When Jesus met His first disciples, they were curiously following Him to see where He would go. He turned abruptly and asked them something like, “Hey, what do you guys want anyway?” And they responded with something like, “Uh… well… we were wondering if we could see where you live. Can we come over?” (my paraphrase of John 1:38) Jesus’ response was “Come… and you will see.”
Almost a year ago, our third child was born and we named him Andrew (and we call him “Drew”). We named him after the apostle in the Bible that most people only know because of his association with Peter. We talk about PETER… oh, and Andrew. But Andrew actually followed Jesus first and was then responsible for bringing Peter to the Lord.
Had you grown up in Jesus’ day, you would have witnessed the seeming brutality of multiple, repeated animal sacrifices taking place in the temple. Animals go in on a leash and… never come out. In God’s design, the entire scene was intended merely as a foreshadow of what would take place on the cross when Jesus, the ultimate sacrifice for sin, gave His life on that wooden altar.
If you’re like me, you’ve mistakenly thought before that God has just been waiting to show you how bad He thinks you are and how much you deserve His wrath. Certainly God wants you to be warned about the consequences of wrong choices, but what He REALLY wants to show you is something entirely different.
All Christians are simple-minded people who believe in fairy tales. At least that’s the attitude of plenty of skeptics today, as if there are two levels of human intelligence – the kindergarten in which it’s okay to believe in a higher power, if you must, and then grad school where we’ve grown out of the need for religion.