[Human] Being like Jesus?
Another great Mark Wilson post:
I’m not saying that I have this all together, that I have it made. But I am well on my way, reaching out for Christ, who has so wondrously reached out for me. Friends, don’t get me wrong: By no means do I count myself an expert in all of this, but I’ve got my eye on the goal, where God is beckoning us onward—to Jesus.
I’m off and running, and I’m not turning back. – Phil 3:12-14
Humor me please. Let’s pretend it takes exactly 10,000 hours of “contemplating” Jesus to become transformed into His likeness:
And we, who … contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness – 2 Cor 3:18 (NIV, Note the footnote A)
And if you only attend church and hear one sermon lasting 1 hour and attend 1 home group and get another 20 minutes there… to build up 10,000 hours of contemplating… will take… ummm… FAR TOO LONG!
So, since I believe we only have one lifetime, I came up with 3 ways to dramatically shorten the length of time it will take to be transformed into His likeness!
Suggestion 1: Read about Him
Instead I recommend that you set time aside every day to read the bible and pray and ask for wisdom. Do it and do it and do it… slowly the veil gets pulled back from your eyes.
How does this work?
And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; [for this comes] from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit. – 2 Cor 3:18
Slowly slowly the whole picture comes into view and the bible says that as we behold our Lord, we become more like Him. The whole bible points towards this ONE Person. Read and pray and read and pray… until He show His power and His intention to you.
The NIV footnote says it really simply: “And we, who … contemplate the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness” 2 Cor 3:18 (NIV, Note the footnote A)
So spend the time finding out who He is. What He did. What He is capable of. What He is willing to do through you. What He wants. Where He is. Where YOU are (seated with Him). As you dig and dig and dig into Him you will be transformed. I was. You will be too.
Suggestion 2: Use what you have been given to love
It’s hard to over-emphasize this point. If you use what you have been given to love others, MORE will be given. It’s the message of the parable of the talents.
Suggestion 3: Righteousness
But SEEK (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides. – Matt 6:33
Seek the Kingdom and righteousness. Well, depending on the verses that you read, either Jesus is the Kingdom of God, or the love that we show is the Kingdom of God.
But I think the point He is making is SEEK. (I wish I had a bigger font size!) So that refers to suggestion 1 above. Seek. Knock. Ask. Keep seeking. Keep knocking. Keep asking.
But He also mentions righteousness. Righteousness is mentioned 190 times in the OT and 86 times in the NT (Source: ESV). It’s clearly an important topic. In the book of Romans 8 chapters is devoted to explain how to become righteous in the eyes of God and it boils down to this: believe in Jesus Christ.
That word believe… it doesn’t mean to KNOW. Knowing is not enough. There has to be a deep enough conviction that your lifestyle changes:
You say you have faith, for you believe that there is one God. Good for you! Even the demons believe this, and they tremble in terror. – James 2:19
If you actually believe you will listen and obey. Your worship will change. Your lifestyle will change. You will begin to trust. You will grow in faith.
So suggestion 3 really comes back to suggestion 1 again. SEEK. ASK. KNOCK. Until you are transformed into His likeness. THEN the demons will recoil because they see Him in YOU.