Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Tuesday's Top Ten [Why Christians are Jesus Freaks]

Freak (n.)
1. as if under the influence of 
2. an ardent enthusiast or fanatic
3. a person who is obsessed with something

Why do Christians seem to be under the influence of Jesus, or obsessed with Him? Why are we ardent Jesus enthusiasts? Why are we Jesus fanatics? WHY ON GOD'S GREEN EARTH CAN'T WE STOP TALKING ABOUT HIM? 
Many people honestly do not get it and many others are tired of hearing about it. I won't ever, ever, ever apologize for being a Jesus Freak. It wasn't until recently (in the last 2-3 years) that I've been a PROUD Jesus Freak. I used to be a closet Jesus Freak, which didn't really make me a Jesus Freak, because if you truly are a Jesus Freak (aka obsessed, a fan of, an ardent enthusiast) you want everyone to know it. Christians want to share the true joy they have found in Him! You may not agree, you may be tired of hearing about it, but I refuse to let that silence me. I've seen statements such as this written to Jesus Freaks, "Let me go to hell in peace." and I grimace. If you believe in Hell, believe me, based on how it's described in the Bible (which I wrote about here), you do not want to go there! Besides the promise of heaven, there's millions of reasons why Christians become Jesus Freaks (and I'm only sharing 10)

Thankfully, I'm not alone! The Bible very clearly states that all who "...confess with your mouth and believe in your heart that Jesus is Lord, you will be saved..." (Romans 10:9) and if you have accepted Jesus Christ as your Savior, we are family, united in Christ. It's a bond that cannot be broken. And I have that bond with Melany. So join us as we proudly proclaim to be a..
... for the reasons we've listed and so much more.

1. One very BIG reason why we cant shut up about Him is because we do not, under any circumstances, wish hell on our worst enemy. One of the "gentler" descriptions (if there is such a thing) that Jesus gives is that it's a place of "... weeping and gnashing of teeth." (Matthew 8:12) Don't believe in hell? Okay. Christians believe we are eternal beings, that our life here on earth does not end in a casket six feet under ground. That is hopeLESS. We want to be hopeFULL and Jesus is our only hope. We have faith in Jesus' words of hope, that what we experience here on earth is not the end. That's one reason of millions, but it's one of the biggest. (If you want to know what the Bible says about Hell, read this post.)

2. Historians cannot argue that Jesus lived. Historians cannot even argue how Jesus died. So if Jesus lived, taught, became the most famous individual to ever walk the earth, and then died on the cross undeservedly, there's gotta be people who wrote about the greatest story on earth? Right? YES! His disciples. We have faith that what these witnesses wrote in the Bible is truth (not just in the gospels: Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, but also in prophet's like Isaiah who prophesied the coming of Jesus and what He was going to do while He was on earth or even what He'd look like in Isaiah 53:2; or Paul's experience in Acts and what he wrote about Jesus in Romans, Ephesians, &etc.) We believe it because they heard the Word from God Himself and are simply His messengers.
We have absolute faith that what Scripture states about Jesus is absolute truth. And faith that what Jesus taught is absolute truth. I grew up hearing this from my father: "Either Jesus was the biggest liar on the face of the planet, or everything He said about Himself was 100% true." I believe the later (and Jesus had A LOT to say, I had a hard time keeping this list at 10). Based on what Jesus taught, there is no middle ground. (Either you believe Him or you don't. Period.)

3. Jesus taught us to lay up treasures in heaven. Why? Everyone dies and we cannot take our money or things with us. Not only that but the things of this earth rot away, something of value has the possibility of being taken from us, or broken. So Christians rest in the promises of Jesus and what He taught: that heaven is a place where none of this will happen, "Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal." (Matthew 6:19) This earth is corrupt and is constantly falling apart. Jesus promised that heaven is perfect. Christians live for that promise! We live for an eternity in a place that is better than we can possibly imagine (and no, it's not harps and wings and flighty things like the media portrays, it's a place where we will have our own mansion with feasts, time with friends and family... imagine your best day on earth... it's infinitely better than that...) AND we'll be with the one Man we love more than life itself! (Yup, Jesus, the guy we can't stop talking about!)

4. Jesus promised (many times) that whoever believes in Him will have eternal life in heaven (see #3). He states it over and over again in Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, here is one example "Truly, truly I say to you, whoever believes has eternal life. I am the bread of life." (John 6:47) and another worth sharing (OH I could share so many!) "I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die." (John 11:25) Why am I sharing this twice? Because salvation is so easy! It has nothing, absolutely nothing, to do with anything we can or will do. Absolutely nothing. Christ died on the cross for us. We accept Him as our Savior. Thus, He receives all the glory. We gain righteousness through Christ alone. If we confess and believe in Him, we will live in eternity with him. (Again, Christians believe we are eternal beings, that we do not cease to exist after death, this promise given to us by Jesus is one heck of a promise. See #3.) You may think me crazy, but I choose to believe it with all of my heart!
Did you know C.S. Lewis was an atheist who sought to disprove Christianity? In his pursuit He became a firm believer, because he could disprove none of it
5. Jesus told his disciples, "... do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. But even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven." (Matthew 10:42) There's a few truths in this statement for us as well. I'll share one: if we believe in Jesus and acknowledge Him in this life, He will be our Mediator on the day that we meet God, therefore we should not fear death if we truly rest in His promises. For us, death is like our car, it takes us where we want to go: eternity in heaven with Jesus Christ - who we're obsessed with - remember?
Okay, I'll share TWO. Everyone will meet God, either He will acknowledge you or deny you, either you will be in heaven or in hell. (Go back to #1 either you believe in Him or you don't. There is no middle ground. There is either heaven or hell. Period.)

6.  Jesus promised He will be with us in good times, in bad times, and all the in-between. We simply need to rest in Him and trust Him with all our heart, soul and mind. "... behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." (Matthew 28:20)

7. Jesus promised His love for us will never die, never waiver. In fact, He loves us so much that He was willing to die on our behalf. WE DESERVE TO DIE because we cannot keep His Word, His law perfectly. We CAN'T. We sin every second of every day. For that reason, we deserve the wrath of God in Hell. Thanks to Jesus and His love for us in dying on the cross, defeating Hell, enduring God's wrath for becoming sin ON OUR BEHALF, we have eternal life for believing in Him. THAT'S how much He loves us, "Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13) 
Paul wrote this amazing passage in Romans 8:38-39 that explains this love to his audience who is enduring the worst kind of persecution we can possibly imagine (they're losing their homes, families, their own life for their faith in Christ...) "I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God is Christ Jesus our Lord." There's no way I can even fathom the depth of His love.

8. Jesus promised (see a theme?) that He will never lose us, He will never forsake us! That's quite the promise considering how many times I screw up in the course of a day. We are imperfect humans loving a perfect, holy, and blameless God. We cannot live up to His standards, which is why we're Jesus Freaks! He is our mediator. Our High Priest. Our Shepard (John 10:11). "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand." (John 10:27-28) Even on our worst days, no matter what we face, He will be there to give us strength to endure until we take our last breath (See #5).

9. Jesus promised he will take care of us, so do not worry about tomorrow. "... do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life.And why are you anxious about clothing? consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." (Matthew 6:25-34) He promises to take care of what we eat, drink, and wear. Period. It may not be easy, or fun, but we live this life in anticipation for the next. Whether or not we have anything for tomorrow, He knows what we need. He is simply asking us to trust Him. (Like our marriage vows, "...in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health, forsaking all others, as long as I live...". Marriage is a beautiful picture of our relationship with Christ and I could think of no better phrase to describe the kind of trust He wants from us.)

10. Jesus promised deep satisfaction is only found in Him. "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst." (John 6:35) He is not referring to physical hunger or thirst, this is a metaphor, He is comparing himself to items we need here on earth in order to live: food and water. He gives more satisfaction than those items. In other words, He is the only source of life (see #3) and the deep satisfaction I have found in Him cannot be fully described. 


Everything written in red is taken directly from His mouth! Now, do you understand why we're FREAKS ABOUT THIS GUY? 

If you want these promises to be yours as well and you want to understand what deep satisfaction is really like, check out my "True Hope" tab at the top of my page. Melany has written about Him as well (and today's top ten is not the first), so don't forget to check out what she says about being a JESUS FREAK!

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