Thursday, September 22, 2011
Today’s Topic: Humanly Unattractive
Today’s Text: Isaiah 53:2 He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to Him, nothing in His appearance that we should desire Him.
From the beginning of human existence on the earth when God created Adam and Eve, we have been attracted to people and things that we believe add value to our lives. It doesn’t matter what the environment is like or what the influence of culture or society is, we have been given the God-image-bearing right of choice, and we have a tendency to use it to serve ourselves. Just look at the historical record of what happened in the perfect environment of the Garden of Eden –
When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it. (Genesis 3:6)
Eve did what we all do; she took her eyes off of her perfect identity in Christ and began looking at what was humanly attractive.
In a nutshell, (wow, this turned out to be a big nutshell) here’s what the Lord is teaching me about this:
- I have a hard time not wanting God to simply make this life better.
- The reason for that is that I don’t really believe that my spiritual life is more important than my physical life.
- God promised to take care of me physically if I put my spiritual life ahead of everything else.
- I must not really trust Him all that much if I keep trying to provide for my physical needs ahead of my spiritual.
- God knew that we would all be in that same condition when He sent Jesus to be our Savior, so the human form Jesus took was totally unattractive to us, and the lifestyle He modeled and taught was unappealing to most.
- There was nothing about the appearance, personality, or leadership style of Jesus that made people instantly want what He had.
- When the people of Israel wanted their first King, they chose Saul because he was the most physically qualified and attractive, and look where that got them.
- The crowds that followed Jesus did so primarily because they thought He would bring them the physical and political benefits they wanted. They were, like us, focused on the immediate and not on the eternal.
- The ENTIRE focus of the ministry of Jesus was to provide spiritual restoration and deliverance from the bondage of the physical. That is the ultimate goal of redemption, and all of creation cries out for that day when we will be delivered from the physical – so why do we spend so much time trying to nurture and strengthen what God wants destroyed?
- If we are attracted to Jesus because of what we think He offers us in this life, then we are missing the point of salvation. There are far too many teachers and preachers who proclaim that God and Jesus are your tickets to human wealth and health, when from the very beginning of His introduction to us God says that Jesus would come with absolutely no human attraction and that His purpose would be completely spiritual. Any and all who come to Him for salvation must come on those terms.
I wonder what would be different about American Christian churches if we all understood this. I wonder how it will change our lives.