1997-03-20 - Experts
There are many people in this world who have a talent, or a gift. It is an area in which they excel, sometimes to extreme levels. Some study for years to develop the knowledge base and needed skills for something in which they have an interest. Surgeons who operate on the brain, for example, must be able to place an arterial clamp directly on a irregularity in an artery. If it slips to one side or the other, they create a devastating stroke. They actually injure the person they are trying to help. I am told it is similar to locking a small set of pliers onto a greased knot on a rubber band. These doctors must be experts before they attempt to perform the procedure on a patient. Others have a knack for cars, or computers, and can pick up a book and quickly digest it. With a little help, they quickly become very able in repair and maintenance. They too become experts.
These men and women are often sought after to teach others from their skills and experience. They have earned the right and the respect to say, "This is how it is done." In an emergency where time might be critical, they can say, "Do it my way. I know it works." In those situations, there can be little room for discussion. It is done their way, or people are hurt badly or die. The very best of these people are also able to communicate to others in a very unassuming way. They are gracious and understanding of questions. These people can command respect and authority without being authoritarian. It is a rare and special combination.
In Christendom, we have men and women who have earned similar respect for their insights and abilities. They are asked to run conferences, revivals, author books and to teach. Dr. Billy Graham is arguably the most easily recognized evangelist of this century. He and his wife Ruth have lived in the mountains of North Carolina in a log cabin for their entire married life. Dr. Graham has spoken to millions, spoken at more crusades, been conferred many honors, and yet he and Ruth have remained humble servants of Jesus Christ.
John 14:6 - Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father, but through Me. (NAS)
Jesus says, "Please do it my way." He is the unquestionable Expert. He is 'the Truth'. He does not simply know truth; He is the Source of truth. The ages are littered with those who have fallen short of the mark of perfection. Jesus is the mark. And yet, He is not haughty and demanding. His heart toward those who do not know Him is seen here.
Matt 11:28-30 - "Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 "Take My yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart; and you shall find rest for your souls. 30 "For My yoke is easy, and My load is light." (NAS)
Would you be an expert in the things of God? If you will, then one thing you must first master, is the broken heart Jesus has for a world that spits in His face. As we looked at last week in 'Persecution', the world will attack the Lord through us as His visible agents. In the midst of all this, Jesus stopped for the children. His wrath was, and still is, against those who would take the Gospel, the good news, and add to it as the Pharisees did. Avoid this leaven of pride and corruption of the simple Gospel.
Once again, I point back to Dr. Graham. He is quoted as saying that he studies even harder now than when he was in college studying to be ordained. Does he do this to 'keep that competitive edge', or out of some sense of obligation? Jesus wants to be our Friend as well as our Lord. How do you get to know a friend? You spend time with them, you learn about them and what they like. Billy Graham is learning about a friend that sticks closer than a brother. There is no club or rule that compels him. It is love that draws Him.
Where eternity is concerned, Jesus is the expert. He created all things. He created the structure of time itself. He has come from eternity past, entered time, and exited to eternity future. He knows there is but one way, His way. Before He made His way, there was no way. If I decide to do it 'My Way', as the song suggests, and it does not match the way that Jesus created, I will not see eternity. Only the experts can say, "Do it my way." Jesus is the Expert. He also has a personal motive. He created each one of us to have fellowship, a relationship, with Him for all time and eternity. Lucifer said, "Do it my way." and fell.
You and I have the same choice before us. Do we believe the 'experts' who say, "God is dead," or a God who gently calls our hearts?
John 10:27-29 - "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they shall never perish; and no one shall snatch them out of My hand. 29 "My Father, who has given them to Me, is greater than all; and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father's hand. (NAS)
There is love, acceptance and security in Christ, the likes of which this world can only dream. God is not a big "Thou shalt not..." in the sky. He has given His very best to reach out to this race who willfully walked away from Him. If you do not know Him, He is reaching to you. He knows you, He created you and knows your deepest hurts and dreams. He is an expert on you. If you would like to know more about Jesus, please write us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love nothing more than to introduce you to Him.
Lord Jesus, Help us to learn that simplicity in love and desire for both You and for a lost a dying world. They march, unknowingly, straight to destruction. To many the answer seems to simple. Help us to reach out to them, with a Jesus we know and love that is simple and true. We are Your ambassadors to this world. Help us to truly represent You in all that we do and say. Amen.