November 27, 2021
Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. Zec 9:9
Who is like unto thee, O LORD, among the gods? who is like thee, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders? Ex. 15:11
We, Americans, are a nation known by the title of Christians and we are known for our multitudes of churches, bibles, Christian television programming and preaching, but who is like the Lord? We can possess the name but do we actually carry the mantle? Many of us say we desire to be like the Lord, but do we really. There are some words that are so popular until they have become a cliché. For instance, what does the word cool means? For some it immediately means a temperature that is not hot but rather cold. To others it immediately means sunglasses and a turned up collar. It really depends on your generation’s definition of the word. Definitions change; people change.
The word Christian has become a cliché for many. Our nation is Christian. Our church is Christian. My family is Christian. What does it mean to be a Christian? Some would say it is to believe in who Christ is, but the scriptures say the devils believe and tremble. That passage of scripture looks at what is true faith in Christ. So many of us aspire to be like Christ, but does to be like him represent more than a cliché? Does it mean to go to church and sing songs and pray like your parents? Does it mean to be a preacher like your pastor? Jesus asked if when the Son of Man comes will he find faith on earth. Will your faith endure? Will mine? Will there be more than a cliché at His coming?
Then there is the story of the religious ones who occupied the temple when Jesus came. They were performing their religious duties, but were they in line with what the Lord required? I think not. They were performing, but their duties lacked truth. Jesus did not commend them; and they did not acknowledge Him. They and their ministries were in conflict with the Lord.
What does it mean to be like the Lord? We all want to be approved at His appearing, but how can we be like what we cannot identify? All throughout the Old Testament God painted a picture of the Lord for us. He was like the lambs that David attended. He was like the shepherd that David represented to the sheep. He was like the smooth stone David used to kill the giant. He was like the still small voice that spoke to Elijah. He was the prophetic voice to the people crying repent and return to God. He was the voice that spoke to Mary and to Joseph to trust in God’s will. We have been taught what He is like through so many examples in the Old and New Testaments.
When He came on the scene in Jerusalem, He was all that and more. Sadducees and Pharisees did not recognize Him because they had not hidden the Word of God in their hearts. Neither did they have a true devotion towards God. Theirs was a pious service without heart, but can we be better than they? Jesus actually requires more of us.
The Law could not make us holy or righteous. Righteousness came to Abraham by his faith in God and his faith acted out in deeds,. David had a true heart for God and he served God. Then, of course, Enoch walked with God and was not because God took Him without the sting of death. How do we be like any of them? We actually have more than they because we can have all they had; plus the Word of God, the example of Christ and the Holy Spirit.
Why does God teach us in Romans that we are without excuse?
Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Rom 1:19-21
The God that made us has given us an inward knowledge of Himself that is revealed in creation itself. He has revealed Himself to all of us. Our spirit can discern Him but we must also accept Him in our heart and conscience.
After we have learned of Him, we can choose to walk like Him, that is what Enoch did. We have a greater opportunity to know God because of what He reveals through past servants in scripture, through the life of Jesus and the availability of the Holy Ghost. So today we are without excuse.
As in days past, the deception is great; and we must persevere beyond the trials. I must prevail and you must prevail. We must prevail beyond the lies and distortions. God paints for us a picture of love and perfection but the devil, who hates God, wants us to be evil and hateful like him. The evil one paints a wholly different picture of existence and we must choose whom to follow. So are you like the Lord?
I previously addressed an article to pastors entitled: “Pastor: How Much Are You Really Like the Lord?” That article was written in 2013 on another web site. Pastors have a responsibility to imitate Christ and to present a living witness of Christ for young believers until they can see Him for themselves. Today there are so many witnesses of Christ available to every person through those who show compassionate love in action, plus all the written and visible accounts. Once we have caught a vision of Him, we must pursue Him until He is found
But if from thence thou shalt seek the LORD thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. Deu 4:29
That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him, and find him, though he be not far from every one of us: Act 17:27
There is a drive that every one of us must have to pursue the Lord and follow Him until we are like Him. We do not journey alone because He is with us, helping us all the way to be like Him. It is our job to make the right decision at crossroads because we have been given the right answers and have the help on the inside if we have chosen to obey. God did not say it would be easy; but it is possible by faith.
I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. Php 4:13
We must learn to say as Jesus said: “…My meat is to do the will of him that sent me, and to finish his work”. Joh 4:34
We live in a very dark world today as sin and evil seem to abound, but…” where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: (Rom 5:20). Despite all the hindrances and darkness; we can make it if we trust and believe God. Some may say: “Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief” (Mar 9:24). The Lord delivered the man that made that cry and He will deliver us when we cry unto Him in our time of need.
Ours is a day-to-day walk with the Lord. We have to trust Him every day.
Jesus said unto him, If thou canst believe, all things are possible to him that believeth. Mar 9:23
As we believe day by day, we become transformed and conformed to be like Him.
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Rom 12:2
What Does Jesus Look Like
For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
Jesus Christ is in no way described as we see many examples of Christian leaders today that are full of self-glory, pride, extravagance, fame, a life of comfort and served as kings. Many people have not caught the vision of Jesus and are being led astray by self-serving ministers. With the wrong vision of Jesus, it is impossible to become like Him. By spending time in the Word of God, praying and walking out what you see; your vision of Christ can become bigger on the inside than what you see imitated in the world. Jesus asked His disciples: “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?” They told Him what the people thought; but then Jesus asked: “But whom say ye that I am? (Mat 16:15). To this Peter responded: “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God (Mt. 16:16).” Those that spend time with the Lord know Him and are best able to imitate Him. We can become disciples of what we see, follow and believe in; but we need to read the scriptures to see if our discipleship looks like Jesus. The Word is our looking glass or mirror to see if we look like Jesus. Do we look at the word and say like Isaiah: “Woe is me! for I am undone…(Isa 6:5)” or are we thankful to see progression from where we were. If we strive to be like Christ then His life should shine through our life. Apostle Paul said: “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus” (Php 3:12). We see in Paul’s life the image of Christ. His words express what should be our determination: “I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus. Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you” (Php 3:14-15). Paul expressed his greatest desire: “That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death…(Php 3:10). Paul counted all things a loss and as dung, but he sought desperately to know the Lord and to be like Him. He introduced to us what our yearning should be as well because we cannot make it in except that we be conformed to Christ. “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren” (Rom 8:29).
Why We Need to Be Like Him
God has a work for all of us to do; and we cannot carry it out until we are conformed to be like Him. The work we do is an extension of the mission He started out in the earth to deliver a lost people. Christ as the Head in heaven gives instruction to His body in the earth and we carry out that work as the body of Christ. We carry His name, power and authority to do the will of the Father as Jesus prayed for us before He was crucified. In these days of trouble and fear, we need the empowerment of Christ to help our ailing world. We are the help our world is waiting on. We find our hope and assurance in fellowship with the Lord. Our world becomes brighter when the saints work in the vineyard and let their light shine!
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on n hill cannot be hid. Mt. 5:14