Disappointed by Christ?

Disappointed by Christ?

Jesus does not always fulfill people’s expectations.

►“Teacher,” a man said to Jesus, “tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me” (Luke 12:13 NASB). But Jesus refused, warning him about the trap of greed.

►Those whom Jesus fed with the loaves and fish returned the next day in hopes of another free meal. But when Jesus offered them something far better than food for the body, many of them turned away and did not follow Him ever again (John 6).

►James and John requested places of honor beside Jesus in His glory. He proceeded to teach the importance of seeking places of service, not places of prominence.

►Exasperated, Martha asked Jesus to send her sister Mary to help her prepare the meal. Jesus did not do as she asked, but used the opportunity to teach her (and us) about priorities (Luke 10:38-42).

►After Jesus healed the man possessed by a legion of demons, he wanted to come with Jesus. But Jesus said, “Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you.” And he did (Luke 8:38-39).

►Having heard much about Jesus, Herod was glad when Jesus was brought before him, because he wanted to see Him do a miracle. But Jesus would not oblige (Luke 23:8-11).

Are we willing to accept Jesus on His own terms? Or do we want to fashion Him to suit our own agenda?

Are we willing to follow Christ, even if what He offers is not what we had in mind? Do we trust Him to do right by us, regardless?

Are we willing to serve Him even if His teachings and expectations go against the grain of our pride and selfishness? Will we follow Him even if He takes us places we don’t understand or wish to go? (John 21:18-19)

We have a choice. Will we be like Martha, James and John, and the man freed of the demons who obeyed Christ, even though He did not grant their requests? Or will we be like the disciples who turned away to follow Him no more?

When Jesus asked His remaining disciples if they too wanted to leave, Peter responded, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life. We have believed and have come to know that You are the Holy One of God” (John 6:67-69).

Ultimately, which of these two groups—those who stayed or those who left—were happy with their choice?

Will we be happy with ours?

--David Gibson