As you have heard from Elder Sean Lee, the prayer meeting at church tonight is cancelled due to the snow. You are encouraged to spend time worshipping with your family members at home.
We have been studying the Gospel of John verse by verse in our family devotion. It can be highly edifying to work through the text that way. But it does require a rigorous discipline to focus on the authorial intention:
Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that by believing you may have life in his name. (John 20:30-31)
You heard my complaint in the email I sent Monday (posted here “IMHO, Gary Oldman is better at acting than Jesus” as a blog entry). Popular Christian writers often try way too hard to remake Jesus into a role model, according to certain fashionable image and likeness of theirs. Instead of seeing Man according to Imago Dei, they remake God according to their Imago Hominis. Such “application interest” is often sadly coupled with little regard for the intention of the biblical authors. Look, the evangelists were not interested in teaching you how to become a successful teacher, entrepreneur, activist or what not through the life of Jesus! The evangelists tried to show you how good a job Jesus did as Christ to make the case that He is Christ! The evangelists were not even necessarily teaching you how to live a better life; they were mostly worried that you don’t have a life! KEEP THAT IN MIND!
I will go into chapter 2 of Experiencing God this coming Sunday. Please read Deut. 10:12-22 before you come. The flip side of my warning against mismodeling Jesus is that there are plenty of overtly stated biblical teachings on how to live a better life — how to be a better neighbor, spouse, parent, child, and sibling. They are no less the words of God! Learn them so that you may love God, fear God, and worship God for whom God truly is.
Thank you and I hope to see you at church this weekend.
English Ministry Pastor, CBCGL