Tuesday, May 26, 2015

The Difference Jesus Makes

Scripture Text: John 5:19-47

Does belief in Jesus really matter? That is the crux of the conversation Jesus is having in this section from John. People all over the world live productive lives, filled with compassion and love, yet Jesus is not part of the equation for them. So, what difference does it make?

Belief in Jesus does not automatically make everything better in our lives, in fact there are times when it makes it harder. The promise of God is not that we will live a better life than another person who does not believe in Jesus, much less follow Jesus. No, the promise is that we will have a fullness of life that is only possible through Jesus.

This fullness comes from having a fullness of relationship with God that can only be found through Jesus. A life that experiences love and compassion without Jesus will come to know love and compassion more fully because of their relationship with Jesus. In other words, when we do not believe and follow Jesus, we are settling for less than everything God desires for us.

The same is true of marriage. There are many successful marriages throughout the world that do not have Jesus as a part of the marriage. Great love and fulfilment is found in these marriages, and for all intents and purposes these marriages are of high quality. Only they are not experiencing the fullness of what God desires for marriage.

There are many who call themselves Christians who continue to leave Jesus out of their marriage. This is easy to do because we have not seen Jesus, nor have we seen God and we live in a seeing is believing culture. Yet, the key to experiencing everything God desires in marriage still comes back to Jesus.

To experience all that God desires in marriage requires two people who are followers of Jesus. Further it requires the couple to invite Jesus into the marriage in tangible ways. This is done by loving our spouse and other people like Jesus loves all of us. It is also done by walking in compassion and mercy with our spouse in the same ways Jesus does with all of us. Anything less can still be productive and good, however, it will not be all that God desires for you and your marriage.

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