JESUS WOULD LIKE TO KNOW, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

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JESUS WOULD LIKE TO KNOW, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?

A rich man got invited to a Christmas party, so he brought with him a gift. He put the gift in a box; and around it, he tied a ribbon. When he got to his host’s home, he left it under the tree, like all the other presents were. When the time came for all the guests to pick out a gift from under the tree, he looked across the room and saw a young man. He was alone, in clothes that had seen better days, looking a little forlorn. He walked over to that young man and said, “Pick my gift. There is a thousand-dollar bill inside.” If you were that young man, what would you do?

After the frivolities were over, it was time to go home. On his way home, the rich man passed a back alley. There were several people crowding around an old oil drum, trying to keep warm by the fire. He had compassion for the people by the fire, so he stopped, reached into his pocket and pulled out another box. And just like the one he left at the party, it had a thousand-dollar bill inside. Not wanting to draw attention to himself, he just left the box on the floor, at the mouth of the alley, and walked off. If you were there and you saw him leave the box, what would you do?

The route home took this rich man across a small wooden bridge. A little further on, there was a fork in the road. He noticed a young man standing at the fork, visibly lost. From his clothes and the map he was carrying, the rich man could tell that he was from out of town, and so he was probably lost. Having lived here all his life, the rich man knew that the path on the right led home, whilst the path on the left led to a steep ravine. It was already dark and the paths were slippery from the drizzle that had come down a few hours earlier. Not wanting to see harm come to the stranger, the rich man walked over to the stranger and said, “Be careful, the path on the left leads to a steep ravine. Why not head the other way with me. My place is just up ahead. I have a pot of stew on the fire and freshly baked bread on the table. You look like you could use a warm meal.” If you were that lost stranger, what would you do?

That is the million dollar question is it not? What would you do? A few years ago, there was a movement going around the world, the WWJD or ‘What Would Jesus Do’ movement. It moved people to be conscious of Jesus’ will in every aspect of their lives. When making a decision, people often started asking themselves, ‘What would Jesus do in this situation?

But beloved, today it is not about what Jesus would do. Because we know what He would do, we know what He came to do, because He told us explicitly.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.” John 3:16-17

He came to love us, not to condemn us.

“He was in the world, and the world was made through Him, and the world did not know Him. He came to His own, and His own did not receive Him. But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name: who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.” John 1:10-13

He came to make us sons of the Living God, and therefore, co-heirs with Him to the treasures of Heaven.

“For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.” John 6:38-40

He came to give us full and complete remission of sins, pay the price for our transgressions, so that through Him, and in Him, we may with Him die to sin and rise again to an everlasting and abundant life, for He said,

“I come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10

And even more than that, He came to give us provision.

“I am the bread of life.” John 6:35

“I am the true vine.” John 15:1

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declared the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11 [NIV]

When He walked the earth, He healed the lepers (Matthew 8 and Luke 17), He healed the lady with the flow of blood (Mark 5), He raised Jairus’ daughter (Mark 5) and Lazarus (John 11) from the dead, He turned water into wine (John 2), He healed Peter’s mother from her fever, He did distance healing on the Centurion’s servant (Matthew 8), He made the blind to see (John 9) and the lame to walk (John 5) and forgave sins. Just to name a few.

And finally, He came to prepare us for the day when He will come again to bring us to Himself.

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” John 14:1-3

He came to do all that. And just like the rich man, He leaves His gift, His box there in front of you. It is there for you. What will you do?

You do realize, of course, that His gifts cannot reach you unless you respond by doing 2 things. First, you need to believe that in that box, there really is a thousand-dollar bill, and you need to go pick it up. Rich or poor, clean or dirty, young or old, anyone had an equal chance to pick up that box. Anyone who believed, would have been able to walk up to the box, take it, open it, and enjoy the gifts which He had purposed to lavish on them. All they needed to do was believe.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. ” John 3:16

Whoever believes in Him, should not perish but have everlasting life. Do you believe?

And just like that rich man, Jesus’ gifts never run out. He keeps on giving. There is always one more box in His pocket; as He so eloquently told us through the parable of the great supper.

“Then the master of the house, being angry, said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and lanes of the city, and bring in here the poor and the maimed and the lame and the blind.’ And the servant said, ‘Master, it is done as you commanded, and still there is room.’ Then the master said to the servant, ‘Go out into the highways and hedges, and compel them to come in, that my house may be filled.” Luke 14:21-23

Make no mistake, beloved, Jesus has put before you all of His blessings, His provision, His protection, because He put before you the free gift of your salvation and His righteousness. Indeed, all those who preach His love are doing exactly what the servant was ordered to do; compel others to come, that they may enjoy the feast which has been prepared. So what would you do beloved? Will you come?

All the preaching and sharing in the world would not do one bit of good if you do not believe. Because if you do not believe; you will not desire the gift. If you do not desire the gift, you will not reach out and partake, you will not open, and you will not receive. Some people blame God for limiting His salvation. Far from! The ball is now in your court, as it has been since He died for you. What would you do?

And if you would like to come, then come as you are, my friend. Jesus makes no distinction between peoples, between creeds, between races, much less station in life. Remember that He said,

“Then He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, “Drink from it, all of you. For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.” Matthew 26:27-28

His blood was shed for many, and just like the great feast, there is still room for you because you want it. So then my friend, say this prayer with me.

“Heavenly Father, thank You for calling out to me, even when I did not know You, nor did I want to have anything to do with You. Thank You that despite all that, You still left Your gift of salvation there for me, right in front of me. I believe Jesus, that by Your death, I have now died to sin, and by Your resurrection, I am also risen with You and in You to a newness of life. I receive the full and complete remission of all my sins that Your blood was shed to give. I receive Your righteousness which You have imputed to me because my sins were all nailed on You on that cross. Because of this, I know that I now am right with You and with our Father and I now receive all the good, all the blessings, all the provision and protection that You have willed into my life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Beloved child of God, in the words of the knight guarding the Holy Grail in Indiana Jones And The Last Crusade, ‘you have chosen wisely’. Enjoy the gifts which Jesus and our Father have in store for you. And remember, there is always more where that came from.

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