Sunday, January 5, 2014

A Palestinian Jesus?

Mahmoud Abbas, chairman of the Palestinian Authority gave a Christmas message. This sounded rather strange knowing that Abbas is a Muslim, hates Jews and Christians. It is due to the P.A’s encouragement that Muslim pressure has meant an exodus of Christians from such places as Bethlehem.

However as Abbas spoke about Jesus two things became apparent. The man didn’t know what he was talking about and secondly Chairman Abbas was using Jesus as a ‘Poster boy.’ The reason for this was to make Jesus out to be a Palestinian (the term means Philistine in the bible) who was the original freedom fighter. Such a ploy has been used many times by cults, gay rights activists and anti establishment groups. To make Jesus Christ a mere ‘poster boy’ for a cause is ridiculous to the facts and scurrilous to the person. How such leaders from Arafat to Abbas try to use the Church as a political platform while seeking its extinction is beyond comprehension. Still hypocrisy has no shame.

The apostle Paul has called such endeavours as an attempt to create another Gospel and thereby another Jesus (Galatians 1:6–9. 2 Corinthians 11:4). His verdict upon such promoters is that they are cursed.

I wondered how the Islamic world would have reacted if the Pope had twisted the history of Mohammed in a similar fashion. What if it was said that the founder of Islam was a secret admirer of Israel and supportive of their right to the God given land. What if Mohammed was seen as a freedom fighter against the forces that occupied the land of Israel when he lived. Oh boy there would have been a jihadist uprising to put things right as they understood it. Here is a big difference between the two belief systems. Christians are called by their Lord Jesus Christ to pray for their enemies and the ignorant leaders such as Mahmoud Abbas. Islam says ‘kill them!’

In Matthew 24 Jesus gives some insights into what precedes His promised return to earth. Part of His message included a warning about pretenders to His name and authority. In verse 23 the Lord said ‘If anyone says to you “look! Here is the Messiah!” or “there he is!” – do not believe it.’ Such expectations are built upon similar delusions as to who is Jesus and denying what the bible reveals about Him. Chairman Abbas’ comments fall into that arena.

When you look at all the founders of religious belief and enterprises one thing stands out. You can take all but one of them out of their faith system and it would roll on as if nothing happened. However should it be possible to do that to the Judeo–Christian Faith and remove the Messiah Jesus everything falls apart. On top of that the Christian Faith actually becomes meaningless. The same applies to the person, work and promises of Jesus in the life of His followers. Why?
Because He is their Lord and Saviour! He is the Way the Truth and the Life. It is by Him and with Him that we enter into the Father’s kingdom. Without Jesus there isn’t any message of amazing Grace. There isn’t any foundation for sin’s penalty paid and forgiveness available. Without Jesus there is a desperate groping around to be good enough for a god you can never know. For where would you look and how would you know such a god if you found him or her, or it? Humanity, you and I, needed God to come seek us and present Himself with verifiable proof from a previous record able to be checked out. Such information must then be tested as to whether His life and history matched the prophesies. That is the purpose of the Old Testament and its history. It is the claim of Jesus in the Gospels to check Him out (John 5:39). It is the testimony of the New Testament writers to what they saw in this Jesus. It is the beauty of God’s amazing, transforming and sustaining Grace that Jesus fulfils all the requirements.

That is Jesus. He is from the tribe of Judah, a Jew, not a Palestinian.He is the Messiah! Jesus fulfilled scripture even to dying on the cross (check Psalm 22. Isaiah 53. Palm 110.) He is risen from the dead and is coming again. Don’t settle for counterfeits or the ‘cover boy’ of terrorists.

1 comment:

  1. Amen. But many times we Christians forget that we are to follow the precepts of the Lion of the Tribe of Judah. Charles Spurgeon helps us.