Friday, January 31, 2014
What Would Jesus Do?
BACK in the ’90s, there was a fashion for wearing woven bracelets of various kinds, and when the woven W W J D wristbands appeared, they suddenly became hugely popular. It was a quasi-fashion item that became ‘cool’ far beyond church fellowships and Spring Harvest.
The question was – and is – a good one. Jesus is our ultimate model for faith and practice – and His take on living in the value of community and togetherness tells us a lot. What did Jesus do?
1. He knew His Father – really knew Him. He said:
“I and the Father are one… know and understand that the Father is in Me, and I am in the Father.” John 10:30 and 38.
The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit are one, we say straightaway – but that’s not the point. Jesus, 100% God but also 100% man, is speaking here from his earthly, incarnate, human standpoint. If we do what we see Jesus doing, that oneness with the Father is not an impossibility. But we need to work at it, because:
2. Jesus had community with His Father – a lot.
Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where He prayed. Mark 1:35
One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God. Luke 6:12
3. Jesus gained a ‘community view’ beyond Himself of what He was doing. He had a clear sense of direction, and freedom from the kind of confusion that often seems to creep in for us.
Jesus gave them this answer: “I tell you the truth, the Son can do nothing by Himself; He can do only what He sees His Father doing, because whatever the Father does the Son also does. For the Father loves the Son and shows Him all He does. John 5:19-20
These examples mainly point to the ‘vertical community’ Jesus enjoyed with His Father. This was real community, but a narrow expression of it. Tomorrow we will see how Jesus used this strong vertical togetherness to enable Him to exercise a horizontal dimension of community.
That’s the way it works for us as well.