When you claim to know the pre-determined answer, then, no matter what questions are fired your way, your position will always be defensive. The phrase ‘Jesus is the answer’ is often used by Christians as both an advertising slogan and go-to answer for all of humanities problems. For those of us who claim to know Jesus, this means that when faced with questions beyond ourselves, we defensively revert to rephrasing problematic questions asked of us into something we can steer towards the one solution we claim to believe in. Instead of answering the question we do not fully comprehend intelligently, we just change or silence the question!
With a new wave of censorship in the midst of the pandemic, as mainstream media and career politicians; now faced with unprecedented exposure to public and professional scrutiny, try to cling to their positions for dear life, Christians should step back and reflect on our own censorship toward those who challenge long held narratives and positions. God’s spotlight shines on all. Religion has defended many things which never originated with Jesus and his apostles in the first place. The true kingdom of God will not collapse under a good shaking, so why should Christians walk on fragile eggshells in such challenging times?
Interestingly, a reading of the gospels reveals that Jesus himself did not believe the slogan we have manufactured around him. Though, as a teacher he often revealed hidden answers after his disciples tried and failed, it is evident he became frustrated when he had to produce the answer we were supposed to already have. Cast out a demon? Sure, Jesus did it better than any, but sometimes he got angry when his own generation could not get the job done first. Feed the multitudes? Jesus did it, but first he tested his students to see if they could work it out. Land disputes amongst siblings? Jesus did not seem interested in being the solution to arbitrary problems that took focus away from His Father’s kingdom mission.
Casting our burdens onto Jesus never implied we should cast our responsibilities onto Him also. He did not come to do our laundry. The things some Christians ask for prayer and direction about on social media means that the obvious needs spelling out again. Who would have thought that in 2020 the advice the world needed to combat viral cold and flu infection most effectively is washing hands? A trip to modern shopping centres in the most affluent countries in the world will reveal that there are still many who simply cannot flush a toilet or wash their hands properly.
Quick and obvious answers are for the immature, the person who really wants to grow needs to be taught the mechanisms by which they can come to a conclusive answer. Some of the world’s greatest minds spent their lifetimes looking for the answer to just one question. Their brilliance was not defined by their certainty but by their sacrificial journey towards their goal.
Jesus, with his wisdom, knew His crucifixion was the answer humanity waited for, but instead of giving that answer away, he gave his disciples the mechanism by which they could reach His conclusion. It is His faith that He desired his disciples to obtain. Faith is the substance and evidence of things hoped for and unseen. Faith caused Abraham to go out not knowing where he went or would end up being. Abrahams conclusion was not certain answers as to where, why and how, the things you do for romance with God cannot be explained! Faith was his conclusion! Faith is the equation humanity is searching for through which the answers we need can be revealed. The Son of Man never said He is coming to simply identify how many people can claim Jesus as the answer. The box he wants to tick is: “will he find faith on the earth?”
We are living in a time when no-one knows the day or the hour or what may happen next. Uncertainty surrounds us. What, where, when, why and how cannot be answered by anyone. Pre-determined answers and positions are crumbling under the pressure of the hour. People are scrambling for provisions to get them through. Everyone is asking questions beyond answering.
My question to you is, do you have enough faith in your lamp to see you through the night?
Joshua Robbie is currently serving the Lord under Pastors Ronnie and Shirley Naidoo of KZN Celebration Centre in Tongaat South Africa. He and His wife Rene’ moved from Australia to South Africa in April 2016. Their desire is to help in whatever way they can so that the church can become all that God has purposed her to be. Josh is a painter by trade and also enjoys sports such as surfing, basketball and boxing. He has also written a book, now available for purchase on Amazon called: “Your Father sees: Living the sermon on the mount”.Josh Robbie previous articles may be viewed http://www.pressserviceinternational.org/josh-robbie.html