Which Jesus Are You Looking For?
Jesus’ coming was anticipated, but He did come in the package that was expected and many misunderstood His mission. There were many prophecies about Him prior to His arrival on earth. The Romans oppressed the Jewish people, so the thought of the Messiah excited the Jews. Surely, He would overthrow the Romans, lead a military coup, and bring freedom to His people. But plans quickly seem to sour when the expected King was first born to a poor virgin in a stable, a place for stinky animals. His crib was the feeding trough for said animals. No palace to receive this King and lowly shepherds in the field were the first visited with the news of His birth.
They were looking for Jesus, but He didn’t come in the package they expected and as He grew, He didn’t do what they perceived as most important. Sadly, many rejected Him and missed Him altogether.
Jesus didn’t come to overthrow the Roman Empire; He came to overthrow sin so that we could be spiritually free-true freedom. Jesus understood that chains on the heart are more lethal than chains on the hands. He didn’t come in all the pomp and circumstance of an earthly king because he understood that humility unlocks the power of God. Today, many claim to be looking for Jesus but have missed Him altogether because they are expecting a certain package and are more focused on deliverance from the temporal. Pain and oppression can be blinding if you let it. What does it matter if we have all the comfort and “freedom” this world offers, yet sin binds us in our heart? The Jesus that is often being preached to tickle our ears is a far cry from the Jesus of the bible. The one who left his heavenly abode, emptying himself of all divine privileges to bring freedom to us. The true Jesus that was born in a stable over 2,000 years ago asks us to deny ourselves, embrace humility, freely forgive, surrender our lives and set our affection on things above. This true Jesus reminds us WE WILL have times of suffering here on earth, but His grace is sufficient and that we must set our gaze on the eternal. Jesus offers true freedom and peace. This Christmas season and the rest of our lives, let us not reject Jesus because He doesn’t meet our carnal expectations. Who He is and what He offers is far greater!
About the Author
Anika Jones is a speaker and author of the book Lessons Learned Along The Way: A 40 Day Devotional. She blogs about faith and family at LivingForLater.com and posts weekly videos on her YouTube channels, Living For Later (@livingforlater) and Living Life Now (@livinglifenow). Anika loves speaking about developing intimacy with God and understanding who we are in Christ. She serves alongside her husband in ministry. They live in Illinois with their 6 children.