Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Do you call yourself a Christian?

"The last thing the mission of Jesus Christ needs is more Christians.

Here is the brutal fact: 85 percent of the people in the United States call themselves Christians. Now, let’s pause long enough to realize that’s a whole lot of people – 247 million to be exact. But how are those 85 percent doing when it comes to accomplishing Jesus’ mission? Here is what the research tells us about people in North America who call themselves Christians:

  • Those who call themselves Christians are no more likely to give assistance to a homeless person on the street than non-Christians.
  • Those who call themselves Christians are not more likely that non-Christians to correct the mistake when a cashier give them too much change.
  • A Christian is just as likely to have an elective abortion as a non-Christian.
  • Christians divorce at the same rate as those who consider themselves non-Christians.
  • Even though there are more big churches than ever before filled with people who proudly wear the title Christian, 50 percent of Christian churches didn’t help one single person find salvation."

    The Big Idea – Dave Ferguson

The message is convicting…Christians are not much different than non-Christians.

So, if I call myself a Christian, how am I different from the rest of the world? The word Christian is really being a Christ follower. Have I answered the call to follow Him? Follow Him where? Do I really know enough about who Christ was to know what was important to him?

"Jesus was not a Christian
He never asked anyone to become a Christian,
never built a steepled building,
never drew up a theological treatise,
never took an offering
never wore religious garments
never incorporated for tax purposes,
He simply called people to follow Him.
That’s it.
That, despite its simplicity, is it.
He called people to follow him…
It is never more
than Jesus’ call: “Follow me”
and a response : dropping familiar nets
and following, in faith,
this sandaled Jewish man.
It is never more than that.
Two thousand years of words can do nothing
To the simple, basic reality of Christianity.
Those first steps
taken by those two brothers.
Peter and Andrew’s theology
was as pure as it gets:
Jesus said, “Follow me.” And we did."

Jesus with Dirty Feet – Don Everts

Matthew 4:18 As Jesus was walking beside the Sea of Galilee, he saw two brothers, Simon called Peter and his brother Andrew. They were casting a net into the lake, for they were fishermen. 19 "Come, follow me," Jesus said, "and I will make you fishers of men." 20 At once they left their nets and followed him. NIV

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