Formations Lesson for March 7: Missing the Point : Friday, Feb. 20, 2004
February 20 2004 by Jimmy Allen

Formations Lesson for March 7: Missing the Point : Friday, Feb. 20, 2004
Friday, Feb. 20, 2004

Formations Lesson for March 7: Missing the Point

By Jimmy Allen
Focal passage: Luke 13:34-35

The movie, "The Passion of the Christ," has the potential of being a defining moment in millions of people's lives.

Reports of people attending previews tell us that many people cry within the first six minutes of the movie because they are so touched and hurt by the pain inflicted on Jesus. The movie, then, could fill a void of artistry portraying Jesus as constantly having a glow and walking among people as if He had a protective force shield.

Despite the potential of making Jesus' humanity more real to us, the movie has detractors. The chief complaint is that the movie portrays Jews in a negative way. The movie's producer, Mel Gibson, denies he is anti-Semitic.

In reading and seeing responses about the anti-Semitism charge, Gibson indirectly said, "don't miss the point. The movie is about Jesus and what He did."

But we are all human, and we too often miss the point.

Adolf Hitler saw a passion play of Jesus' last days. Afterward, he didn't remark about the incredible story of Jesus. Instead, he talked about what the Jews did to Jesus. Hitler, like he did on so much about life, missed the point.

One person who didn't miss the point was Jesus.

Jesus had a Plan

Luke 13:31-33

Jesus was teaching when someone warned him about Herod Antipas. The bearer of the warning was a Pharisee, a member of a strict group of religious leaders who were the puritans of their day in Jewish life.

Although the Pharisee wanted to help Jesus, he didn't understand the identity and purpose of Jesus. The Pharisee missed the point.

The Messiah sent back a report telling Herod that He would cast out demons and heal people. When He was through, He would then go to Jerusalem.

Jesus wasn't about to allow someone like Herod to stop him from fulfilling His plan, His responsibility. Jesus saw a picture much larger than trying to protect Himself. In essence, Jesus didn't miss the point.

Do we have a plan? Are we looking at life through our faith, or are we allowing the world to define what we should do?

A country song was released in the early 1990s with a catchy refrain: "You've got to stand for something or you'll fall for most anything."

Jesus knew that for which He was standing. He had a plan, and He kept to it.

Jesus Loved

Luke 13:34-35

Jesus knew what would happen in Jerusalem, and He hurt - not for His own suffering but for the people of Jerusalem. In a statement full of emotion, Jesus said: "Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the city that kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to it! How often have I desired to gather your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you were not willing."

Jesus knew Jerusalem. Although Luke doesn't mention Jesus in Jerusalem prior to this declaration about the city, Jesus knew what would happen there.

Jesus wasn't the Messiah they thought He should be. They wanted a military and political king. They missed it when the Messiah came as a spiritual king. They missed the point. Jesus still loved them.

Seeing the Point

Our perspective of Jesus is different from that of the people in Palestine 2,000 years ago. We see Jesus through lenses tinted with various experiences ranging from Sunday School portraits to intellectual discussions.

Maybe we are tempted to please the world and see Jesus as just a good teacher, a prophet or an interesting figure in history. If we fail to see Jesus as the Messiah, then we are missing the point of scripture, and we are missing the point of the Christian faith.

Jesus didn't miss the point. Neither should we.

2/20/2004 12:00:00 AM by Jimmy Allen | with 0 comments

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