Jesus, The Revolutionary

Jesus Christ is NOT ONLY…

The Saviour The Messiah The Prophet The Priest The Apostle The Healer The King

He is also the Revolutionary
He was not a rebel…or even rebellious The difference:

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

Jesus was and still is a revolutionary … wanting to change the future / your’s, mine, the world’s

YET, few Christians think of Him as a revolutionary Fewer yet know Him as a revolutionary

If you read the Bible without your religious and traditional glasses If you read the Bible with the Holy Spirit helping you to see clearly You will discover Jesus, the revolutionary

The revolutionary teacher
Radical prophet
Annoying and even irritating preacher (provocative)
Controversial in His lifestyle
Iconoclast – a person who attacks established beliefs and institutions Implacable opponent of the religious establishment (relentless, unstoppable)

Remember:

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

Jesus was never harsh or critical with His own people He is full of mercy and kindness

He loves His people passionately
And, this is precisely why He is passionate and jealous for His Church – the one He is building

This is also why He will not compromise with the entrenched traditions by which His people have been held captive – traditions that nullify the Word of God

He did not tolerate pointless religious traditions in the pages of the New Testament Called those who held to lifeless traditions “Whitewashed tombs”

(Matthew 23:27) “Your traditions have made God’s Word null and void” (Matthew 15:6)

He does not tolerate them today

He will not ignore our devotion to lifeless religious and traditional aspects of spiritual life and the Church

He is a revolutionary out to change what is to make a better “what could Be”
“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the

future”

Consider the way Jesus acted – responded while on the earth Jesus was never a rabble-rouser nor a ranting rebel

Matthew 12:18-20a “Look well at my handpicked servant; I love him so much, take such delight in him. I’ve placed my Spirit on him; he’ll decree justice to the nations. But he won’t yell, won’t raise his voice; there’ll be no commotion in the streets. He won’t walk over anyone’s feelings, won’t push you into a corner.” (The Message Version)

Yet, He constantly defied the traditions of the scribes and Pharisees

And He did not do so by accident, but with great deliberation

The Pharisees were those who, for the sake of “truth” as they saw it, tried to extinguish the truth they could not see

Their traditions and religious glasses prevented them from seeing so much of the truth

This caused a constant blizzard of controversy between the “traditions of the elders” and the acts of Jesus

After all, Jesus “came full of grace and truth” Jesus said, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life”

Someone once said (oh, that was me):

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

Jesus is a revolutionary

Jesus brought drastic change to the world Change to man’s view of God Change to God’s view of man Change to men’s view of women

Our Lord came to bring radical change to the old order of things Replacing it with a new order

He came to bring forth a … New covenant

New Kingdom New birth
New race
New species New culture New civilization

As you read through the Gospels without your religious glasses

Behold your Lord – the Revolutionary
Watch Him throw the Pharisees into a panic by intentionally their traditions

The way things were usually done – the way tradition says they must be done
Often tradition that is passed off as “the word of the Lord” or “the Bible says”

Numerous times Jesus healed on the Sabbath day Flatly breaking their cherished tradition

If the Lord wanted to keep the peace with His enemies and not rile them up
He could have waited until Sunday or Monday to heal some of the people

Instead, He deliberately healed on the Sabbath, knowing full well it would make His opponents livid

This pattern in the life and ministry of Jesus runs pretty deep

Jesus heals a blind man by mixing mud with spit and putting it in the man’s eyes

Such an act was in direct defiance of the Jewish ordinance that prohibited healing on the Sabbath by mixing mud with spit

According to the Mishnah: “To heal a blind man on the Sabbath it is prohibited to inject wine in his eyes. It is also prohibited to make mud with spit and smear it on his eyes.” (Shabbat 108.20)

Yet your Lord intentionally shattered this tradition publicly and with absolute resolve In other words, He did it on purpose – that day and that way!

Watch Him eat food with unwashed hands under the judgmental gaze of the Pharisees He knew they were watching for Him to break their traditions

He did it intentionally defiling their fossilized tradition

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

In Jesus, we have a man who refused to bow to the pressures of religion and religious conformity

In Jesus, we have a man who preached a revolution
In Jesus, we have a man who not tolerate hypocrisy (talk and walk must line up)

In Jesus, we have a man who was not afraid to provoke who suppressed the liberating Gospel He brought to set men free

In Jesus, we have a man who did not mind evoking anger in His enemies, cause them to declare outright war against Him to get rid of Him regardless

MY POINT:

It is this … Jesus came not only as Messiah, the Anointed One of God, to deliver His people from the bondage of the Fall (Adam and Eve and the first sin)

He came not only as Saviour, paying a debt He did not owe to wash away the sins of mankind

He came not only as Prophet, comforting the afflicted and afflicting the comfortable

He came not only as Priest, representing people before God and representing God before people

He came not only as King, triumphant over all authority, principality, and power

He also came as Revolutionary, tearing apart the old wineskin with a view to bringing in the new wineskin

Behold your Lord, the Revolutionary!
For most Christians, this is a side of Jesus Christ they have never known before

Because of this they have settled for religion and not relationship

Because of this their have routine and never experience revival I love what an old Archbishop of Canterbury, England once said:

“Everywhere Paul the apostle went there was either a riot or a revival; everywhere I go

they pour tea.”

Jesus the Revolutionary

This is a side of Jesus Christ that most Christians have never encountered Because of this they experience death and not life

Because they don’t know Jesus as at the Revolutionary they experience boredom and not adventure

And, as a result the Church – God’s people – is dead and no longer experiences His life His Presence, His Power, His peace

The Church – our life, worship, and ministry outreach – is meant to be an expression of our Lord’s revolutionary nature

The Early Church, whose history is recorded in the New Testament, understood that they were an expression of Jesus’ Revolutionary nature

And so it is recorded in the Book of Acts, “These men who have turned the world upside down have come here also” (Acts 17:6b)

They were not rebels with a cause – they were revolutionaries

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

The early Church understood this and viewed Jesus as the Revolutionary that He was As a result:

They understood the purpose of the Church – to change the world’s future They understood God’s passion for His Church – and lived in that passion

They walked in His power to release this revolution within their own hearts and out into the world … seeing the lost saved

They knew they were a part of a living organism – the Body of Christ – and not an organization perpetuating itself with rituals and rules and regulations

And, the message of the Gospel of the Kingdom spread to the whole known world at the time of the Roman Empire

God is looking for people who are no longer satisfied with what is – as good as it may be God is looking for those who are feeling unsettled inside

Looking for more Needing more Wanting more

God is looking for people who are experiencing divine discontent – a strange feeling inside that something is not right

Something is missing Something needs to change

God is looking for people who recognize that what is needed is a revolution within the Christian faith

A complete upheaval of those Christian practices that are contrary to biblical principle

God is looking for those who are willing to begin all over again, on the right foundation – because anything less will prove defective

And, I am so thankful that among the young people – and even some of us who are a bit older – revolutionaries are catching that vision and are willing to run with it regardless of the cost

Oh, the world and organized religion may call us rebels

But we are revolutionaries – willing to give our lives to overthrow what is so that we can have what should be – the Church of Jesus Christ, alive and victorious

Always remember:

“a rebel attempts to change the past; a revolutionary attempts to change the future”

And, together with the Holy Spirit, we can do it!

A.W. Tozer wrote:

“If Christianity is to receive a rejuvenation it must be by other means than any now being used. If the church in the second half of [the twentieth] century is to recover from the injuries she suffered in the first half, there must appear a new type of preacher. The proper, ruler-of-the synagogue type will never do. Neither will the priestly type of man who carries out his duties, takes his pay and asks no questions, not the smooth-talking pastoral type who knows how to make the Christian religion acceptable to everyone. All these have been tried and found wanting. Another kind of religious leader must arise among us. He must be of the old prophet type, a man who has seen visions of God and has heard a voice from the Throne. When he comes (and I pray God there will not be one but many) he will stand in flat contradiction to everything our smirking, smooth civilization holds dear. He will contradict, denounce and protest in the name of God and will earn the hatred and opposition of a large segment of Christendom.”