I am reading A More Christlike Word by Brad Jersak as part of a study group I am attending. I am going to be sharing some of my reflections as I read the book. Here is my sixth reflection:
Jesus is the FINAL Word of God. I am a writer. When I want to emphasize something, I use an exclamation point. Jesus is the exclamation point of God. Jesus is the last word. If there was a gavel, Jesus is the last word before that gavel comes down for the final so-called judgement. The Bible is not the final word. I now require the Bible to submit to Jesus. Not Jesus to submit to the Bible. As Brad Jersak says, “does God send a sacred book or a human who is God?”
I now challenge people. When with much certitude they come at me with Bible verses or judgements blazing like from a semi-automatic weapon. I challenge them now. I ask them, “Is that what God said?” And more specifically, “Is that what God personally said to you?” Especially when it comes to them being so certain about my failures. Did you even ask God about me? Did you even talk to God and tell God what your concerns are about me? Did you even wait for an answer?
Since God seems to talk only to you? Since God seems to have appointed only you to determine what is right and wrong? Did you even ask God?
I doubt it, but I bet my challenge falls on deaf ears. One time I was surprised, though. I told me brother to ask God what God thought of me. My brother said he asked God. Then my brother came back with about three things that he said God told him about me. Which were not true. That really surprised me. I mean, I wanted to give my brother the benefit of the doubt. So I did what I encourage others to do. I asked God. “Why would You tell my brother these things about me?” And just like God, a whole revelation was unveiled to me. More for my healing. Less to do about me and my brother being in agreement. As frustrating as that was and still is for me.
This is where we still hold those formulas so dear. So close. Like, “Surely God, you won’t mess with my favorite sacred cows?” Be ready dear, friend. If so, I believe it is only for healing. Again, these days all I have is Jesus. Not much else remains. Although I have hope that the foundation is just being cleared for hopefully much better than was built before.