He Gets Us & The Whole Truth About Abiding In Jesus
If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. — John 15:6-8
When discipling someone, you need to tell them what to do and what not to do. In addition, you should show them the outcomes of both. I call this "playing the tape forward." And that's what Jesus does so well as a disciple maker. He plays the tape, metaphor, story, and choices all the way out, which means the good news also has some inescapable bad news.
Some believing parents, teachers, and pastors fail to do this. They spend far too much time focusing on everything that's great about abiding in Jesus but completely avoid addressing the negative consequences of not abiding. Most who do this do so out of fear and concern that this information might alienate and scare people away. But Jesus never ever did this. This was because doing so would dilute the good news because it would fail to tell about the victory over the bad news and drive people to an incomplete understanding of Jesus and the Gospel truth.
One recent example of this is the "He Gets Us" advertising campaign. You have probably seen their artistic and cryptic commercials recently. The stated goal is to "reintroduce people to the Jesus of the Bible and His confounding love and forgiveness." And I want you to know I am not against any marketing campaign that wants to talk about Jesus, but I am against one that presents an inaccurate or incomplete message leading people away from Jesus. And in my opinion, this marketing campaign does this. It's just a new version of what the church has done wrong in presenting Jesus and the Gospel over the last few decades. We have been telling people only part of the truth about Jesus. We tell people that Jesus is loving and forgiving, but we don't tell them that they are sinners who are fruitless, withered, pruned, gathered, and thrown into a fire without him. And this is untruth and unloving.
The church has been withholding the whole truth for too long, and it's time to put an end to this. If you are a believer, it's your responsibility to "play the tape forward" for people, which means telling them the whole truth about both the love and judgment of Jesus. Failing to do so is a failure in discipleship. By only sharing about a loving and forgiving Savior, you are not helping the Gospel or people; in fact, the Gospel doesn't need your help because your help might hurt. Your role is to convey the message as it is. Attempting to "help" the Gospel by limiting or softening the message might actually hurt people and send them to hell.
Six Things "He Gets Us" Gets Wrong:
- Ignores Jesus's Divinity: The message presently simplifies Jesus to a spectacular human, ignoring his divinity.
- Jesus as a Role Model, Not Savior: It plays on Jesus's human traits, not his essential role as Savior.
- Modern Disciples Got Him Wrong: It suggests that believers have him wrong, and we need a more appealing version for today.
- Alignment With Cultural Trends: It promotes cultural preferences about Jesus, ignoring troubling issues like sin.
- Faith as Social Justice: It interprets issues through a secular and social justice worldview only, not a biblical worldview.
- Inspiration Over Salvation: It attempts to inspire and overshadows the need for salvation by Jesus.
- How do you personally reconcile the loving and forgiving nature of Jesus with the consequences of not abiding in Him, as described in John 15:6-8?
- In your daily interactions and teachings, are there times when you might be holding back the full truth of the Gospel for fear of alienating others? How can you ensure that you present a complete and balanced understanding of Jesus and His teachings?
DO THIS: Tell them the whole truth
PRAY THIS: Father, grant me the courage to "play the tape forward" and share the complete truth of Your love and judgment, as Jesus did. Help me not to dilute the good news but to lead others to a full and genuine understanding of You and Your saving grace. Amen.
PLAY THIS: Abide In Me.
SIGN UP — THE DAILY DEVO
short + biblical + practical
Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.