We sing songs that go, “Lord, I want to be just like You; I want to do the things that you do.”
We tell each other, “I am trying to be more like Christ.”
We wear obtuse bracelets that remind us to ask ourselves, “What would Jesus do?”
But what do these statements imply? Are we really called to be like Jesus? Is that why He came to earth? To set a good example, and therefore show us how to live?
No. No, we are not called to be like Jesus. Jesus was God, and he was perfect. For Christians to want to be like God is totally misguided.
Who is the one who wants to be like God? Satan.
Satan was originally a high-ranking angel named Lucifer. Lucifer wanted to be like God, and it got him kicked out of heaven, and I’m pretty sure we want to go to heaven, not get kicked out.
“I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the most High.” (Isaiah 14:14)
That is where evil and sin originated. As a result, Lucifer was cast down to earth and doomed to hell. He became the devil, Satan, our adversary, and his entire objective for the past 6,000 years has been to become like God.
All right, so why did Jesus come to earth?
His coming to earth taught us that we are wretched sinners in need of a Savior. His coming to earth taught us that we can’t be anything like God! His coming to earth revealed to us our desperate need for His mercy and grace to save us from eternal death.
Jesus didn’t come to earth to set us a good example! He didn’t come to show us how to be normal human beings. He came to earth to show us our need for salvation.
If you’re not saved, you may be wondering why Christians insist that you need to turn to Jesus. You need Jesus because only He can solve the ‘sin and death’ problem that you have. His coming to earth was the resolution of that very serious problem.
He came to earth to…
- To fulfill the prophetic promise in Genesis 3 that was spoken to Adam and Eve that the Messiah would “crush the head of Satan.”
- To solve the two problems that were created in the Garden of Eden: sin and spiritual death. They sinned, and then they died (God was telling the truth when He told them, “in the very day that you eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, you will die.”) Jesus solved both of those problems.
- To provide forgiveness. His death paid for the sins of the world (because the wages of sin is death); only God Himself had a life worth giving; His life — His blood — was an acceptable sacrificial offering.
- To offer the restoration of life. His resurrection from the dead made His Holy Spirit available once again to people (just as it was originally given to Adam and Eve when God breathed His life into them).
Look over that list. Can you accomplish any of those things? Can YOU be like Christ?
Of course not. Let God be God, and you . . . just be yourself. If you, my dear Christian brother or sister, believe that you are supposed to be like Christ: LET IT GO.
April 10, 2016