Funerals, Foundations, and Focus - Fixing Our Eyes On Jesus
Posted by Douglas Twitchell on Mar 27, 2006
Recently a young man in our community was killed. It was a sad and tragic time for those who knew him. What made it even more tragic was the fact that there was a group of protesters
who made plans to picket his funeral. If I told you the bizarre sequence of illogic that made these people think it made sense to protest a funeral, you would hang your head in shame at the idea that there are people in this world so completely incapable of logical thought.
What makes it far worse, however, is that these protesters were representatives of a church
. So you would not just hang your head in shame at their illogic, you would hang your head in shame at the thought that there might be Christians
so utterly incapable of compassion and decency.
Over the last week, I've had several people comment to me that they are concerned that these protesters will "bring harm to the name of Christ" I understand their concern, but I think there is far less to worry about than they realize. The people I've talked to - both Christian and non-Christian - realize and understand that these people have absolutely nothing to do with Christ, even though they might claim His name. They have as much to do with Christianity as my left big toenail has to do with the current government in Bangladesh.
And everyone understands that...
In fact, I visited that church's website and went to their "about" page (which should tell us all about who they are, right?). I found that their about page talks in three places about the cause that they protest against, and only once
mentions the name of Jesus. That in itself isn't a big deal, except that, the one time they mention the name of Jesus, it is to make a point about what the Gospel isn't
This reminded me of two verses. One is I Peter 2:4
- And coming to Him as to a living stone which has been rejected by men, but is choice and precious in the sight of God...
The church is to be built on the foundation of Jesus Christ, and He must be the center and foundation of everything we are, and everything we do. I think it is possible
that at one time this church had Jesus Christ as their foundation, but certainly that is no longer the case; now their foundation is the cause and the protest which they have embraced. One has to only visit their website or listen to their interviews to realize, this is a people which has lost its foundation.
How does something like this happen? That's the other verse I was thinking of: Hebrews 12:2
- fixing our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of faith...
If Jesus is our foundation, He is also our focus. We must never take our eyes off Him, off His life, His character, His acts, His teachings, and His death and resurrection. When we take our eyes off Him, we run the risk of having our attention fixed instead on other things.
And the other things might not even be bad
things. Sometimes in the church we even get caught up in good
causes. But the moment a cause, a program, or an activity causes us to lose our focus on Jesus Christ, then it becomes a danger to us all.
Where to Go from Here...