|"We are to be like Jesus."|
THERE ISN'T ONE PERSON who went to hell and said, "This is where I want to be." They were all deceived. It is a place of torment. There isn't one demonic power that is "on your side." They want you dead, and if not that, then miserable. If they can't deceive you, then they will steal your health, ruin your relationships, anything else to keep you from doing the thing they hate the most. Be like Jesus.
Here's a man who could preach you clear up a hillside, then feed you (mass miracle), and heal you, and make you want to follow Him around like a sweet little chihuahua. He wasn't intimidated by anyone. He said what needed to be said to whomever He was facing. He called the Pharisees "vipers" and "hypocrites" in one breath and told demons to be quiet in the next one. He was gentle with the weak and kind to those in need. Then, when the pressure was on, said not one word, except to agree with Pilate's words that He was King of Israel.
Here's the thing, though. He was filled with the Holy Spirit. He walked in the fullness of the Spirit, doing only what He saw His Father doing. He was led of the Spirit, speaking what His Father had spoken. And the wisdom of the Spirit flowed through Him, and the power of the Spirit sustained Him. Because of His obedience to His Father, He raised the dead and walked on water.
“And don’t get drunk with wine, which is rebellion; instead be filled with the fullness of the Holy Spirit. And your hearts will overflow with a joyful song to the Lord Jehovah. Keep speaking to each other with words of Scripture, singing the Psalms with praises and spontaneous songs given by the Spirit!” (Ephesians 5:18-19)
We are to be like Jesus. Speak like Jesus. Lay hands on the sick like Jesus. Cast out devils like Jesus. Preach the gospel, prophesy God's plan for the future, operate in the gifts of the Spirit like Jesus. Stand for truth when it matters. Show compassion always. We are to lay down our lives to save our friends and are to love our enemies and bless those who persecute us. No one did this more than Him. He gave His life so that all those who crucified them could be saved, be cleansed by His blood, and be filled with the Comforter. He made sure those who killed Him could be free of sin because of Him.
This has been said many times before. But consider the Levitical sacrifices. An animal was killed, its blood drained humanely, its body washed with water, and its sacrifice laid on a beautiful altar, designed by God, in a building built according to God's design. Solomon's temple was the most beautiful edifice, filled with intricate woodwork, overlaid in gold, and filled with vessels made of gold and silver, the whole temple worth more than anything in existence. Yet, Jesus died as a criminal, on a wooden cross, on a hillside. If everything the Levitical system portrayed was a picture of Him, then why the extreme difference? Why did the God of heaven allow His Son to die that way?
Because of sin. In their eyes, His. They didn't believe He was the Messiah, much less that He was sinless (Hebrews 4:15). They saw the miracles He performed, saw people healed of a myriad of incurable conditions. They saw Him raise the dead. He raised Lazarus from the tomb in front of a huge crowd, yet the religious leaders despised Him for it. They even considered killing Lazarus. Like the parables He told, having eyes they couldn’t see, having ears they couldn’t hear the meaning of His life reflected in their system of laws, so that they would be free.
In God's eyes, their sins. They were performing the feasts and atonement in the temple and plotting to kill Him in their spare time, more worried about their reputation with Rome than the Truth He represented. And it's so much worse than we have accepted. They told Pilate they couldn't have anyone killed, yet they'd tried to stone Him more than once. But not just the religious crowd was filled with sin. The world was filled with it, and the figure on the cross should have been us.
Jesus on the cross is mankind free of sin and filled with the Holy Spirit if they will accept Him. It's the devil defeated forever. The Word of God says if the devil had realized who Jesus was, He would never have killed Him (1 Corinthians 2:8). Because now, men and women can be saved by Jesus’ blood and freed forever from the kingdom of death. Now, we are translated into the kingdom of light, we are full of God, with access to anything we need to live healthy, prosperous, and successful. Now, we can speak like God and spread the life of God around the world, and when we do that, when the world is full of Him, then the end will come. That’s God’s promise.
The devil loves to steal, kill, and destroy, and he uses deception to do it. He makes it look like it’s the most normal thing. We should be sick with that virus. Other people are. We should accept money troubles happen to everyone. It’s completely okay to be angry at God now and then. You can’t help how you feel. After all, Jesus was angry sometimes. No, sickness is never okay. By Jesus’ stripes we are healed of everything. No, our heavenly Father knows what we have need of. If He can feed the sparrows, then He will feed us, little faith and all. No, do not let the sun go down on your wrath, but give it to Jesus and do not carry the care of it. Give Him all of it, and BE LIKE JESUS, who triumphed over the devil for good. And because He did, no one anywhere, ever has to listen to that fool devil again.
“Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.” (Luke 10:19)
Suzanne D. Williams, Author