Now when Jesus
of Oyingbo saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside, switched on his Galaxy Tab and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2 and he began to teach them.
He didn’t say:
3 “Blessed are the rich in material things
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 Blessed are those who party all weekend,
for they will be comforted before and after their hangovers.
5 Blessed are the outrageously proud,
for they will inherit the earth, Saturn and Uranus.
6 Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for sharwama,
for they will be filled.
7 Blessed are those who love watching Messi play,
for they will be shown Messi.
I dey play… Why so serious? Don’t worry…
I don’t intend to speak so frivolously and it is not my intention to merely glean a laugh or two from you but I always imagined that if Jesus was one of us right now, in this day and age of Rap Music and widespread discontent we would not even notice his absurd uniqueness. The way and manner with which He turned the world on its head, how he stripped the religious institutions of their weight and power, how he stood bold in the face of political opposition remains for me one of the most controversial concepts in scripture.
I speak of controversy because as it appears the church which is His body, His bride is a far cry from what she ought to be. Have you met Jesus? His speech was decidedly different. None spoke with the same audacity as did Jesus. It is for this reason that many marveled at his mannerism. Even the elements stood at attention whenever syllables would spill out from His tongues. Perhaps it is for this reason that He is called the Word of God. He is that very expression of the Father. Indeed He is the LOGOS… the Logic by which all of Heaven operates.
Now John speaks of us who are begotten of the Father as similar in quality and quantity with this Jesus. He makes his assertion known, etching them in eternity with the words: AS HE IS SO ARE YOU IN THIS WORLD. By the phrase “this world” He is referring to this tragic plain juxtaposed between desert sand and starry heaven. He says you and I, even in this “terrafirma” which is lost in lust, are exactly as Jesus is.
To understand the gravity of how Jesus is NOW, let us consider how exactly Jesus was…
Check Matthew 8
8 When Jesus came down from the mountainside, large crowds followed him. 2 A man with leprosy[a] came and knelt before him and said, “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.”
reached out his hand and touched the manhid his hands in his suit pocket “I can make you clean but not now and please Don’t touch my Armani suit,” he said. “ Be clean! Be gone” Immediately he was cleansed of his leprosy. 4 Then Jesus said to him, “See that you don’t tell anyonedon’t try to get healed again, for it is My Father’s will that you suffer till you die. But go, show yourself to the priest and offer the gift Moses commanded, as a testimony to them.”
Now I know I am being facetious with this.. but really isn’t that what we teach today? That God gives us cancer to teach us who are in Christ a lesson, when in actual facts God gave us His SON to teach cancer and co lessons. I imagine Jesus at any funeral today. The theme of his message wouldn’t be anything like what is preached today. Rather He would ruin the burial ceremony by raising the dead. Ask Jairus, Lazarus and the Widow of Nain. This is Jesus before He died… Unconventional. Unpredictable.
Let’s examine Matthew 9
9 Jesus stepped into a boat, crossed over and came to his own town. 2 Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, “
Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven. Are you a member of my church? If you can pay enough tithe and offerings, and if you attend camp meetings every last Friday, you will be one step closer to your healing”
Jesus was effusive in his love for humanity. One underlying trait we see in Him was His ability to be driven by compassion. Everything He did, He did out of compassion. Seeing the woman stripped of her clothes and left to the mercy of stone-hearted, law-bound preachers, He places no demands before her, instead choosing to scribble in the sand mysterious words that till today are unknown and then asks a question that disarms her accusers. Like Hosea the ancient romantic He looks upon this harlot and in a voice that is light as a whisper yet fierce as a judge’s gavel says “I do not condemn you”.
What of Matthew 11?
11 After Jesus had finished instructing his twelve disciples, he went on from there to teach and preach in the towns of Galilee.[a]
2 When John, who was in prison, heard about the deeds of the Messiah, he sent his disciples 3 to ask him, “Are you the one who is to come, or should we expect someone else?”
4 Jesus replied, “Go back and report to John what you hear and see: 5
The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy[b] are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor. The auditorium where we worship is packed to the brim. We have 5 services every Sunday. We have the best choristers in the world. Have you seen our ushers? They are the standard of excellence. From the daycare center for toddlers to our facilities for the aged we stand above the rest. Download my messages and receive a supernatural punch. 6 Blessed is anyone who does not stumble on account of me.”
Does He condemn us today? What does Paul say about this… There is therefore now NO CONDEMNATION TO THEM WHO ARE IN CHRIST JESUS. Christ is the very BLESSING OF GOD. He is the exalted one… who by His nature is the SOURCE and SUPPLY of all BLESSEDNESS. This Jesus came to give sight… DEFEATING DARKNESS. He came to administer strength to crippled limbs… DEFEATING WEAKNESS. He came to proclaim, to announce good news to the poor.
We don’t have the capacity to exaggerate God’s goodness. We can distort it, or even misrepresent it, but we can never exaggerate it. His language and lifestyle was always in direct opposition to the forces of hell. He neither pampered nor negotiated with demons. He was ruthless in his dealings with death, disease and destruction. This LAMB was no ordinary case of mutton. He was the LION that trampled upon the serpent. It is this Jesus that John says we are like. It is the same Jesus who dares to gamble that we would attain to even greater works than He did…
While many may argue and start debating societies over whether the “greater” here is quantitative or qualitative, I want to ask a question…
Before we venture into the realm of greater, have we started walking in the realm of “similar” works?