Imitating Jesus; May 15, 2022

John 5:30 “By myself I can do nothing; I judge only as I hear, and my judgment is just, for I seek not to please myself but him who sent me.”

This is a very powerful statement. When the Son of God Himself did nothing on His own, why would we think that we could accomplish anything on our own? I think Jesus’ use of “judge” and “judgment” here is not as in the sense of a courtroom, but as in the sense of evaluating things. We are all too prone to evaluate things – and people – on false criteria, when Jesus always listened to what the Creator had to say about anything. That often gives a very different result! Many things the world applauds are worthless or worse in God’s sight, and many things we might overlook are precious to Him. Jesus lived the most fulfilled life of any human being, and it goes without saying that the more we are like Him, the more fulfilled we too will be. Several years ago there was another run on the saying, “What Would Jesus Do?” WWJD was plastered on bracelets and bookmarks and t-shirts and hats. That wasn’t bad, but to the extent that it was a fad, it had little impact. Actually, we know what Jesus would do in every situation, which is to seek the Father and be obedient to Him. That’s not a slogan, it’s a mindset. We too need to evaluate everything on the basis of God’s will, knowing that He is our Father just as He was Jesus’ Father, even though the mechanism of our sonship is a bit different. (John 20:17) Because of our faith in Jesus, we have as much right to seek the Father’s will as He does, and that’s saying a great deal. However, in seeking, we need to be committed to following, or it is all hollow.

I’m certainly preaching to myself here! I too am quick to evaluate things on my own criteria, instead of seeking God’s evaluation. The foolishness of that is pointed out by the fact that if I had been evaluating myself, I would have rejected myself a long time ago! I am reminded of the fact that the first time my wife laid eyes on me her reaction was, “Yuck.” I’m very thankful God changed her mind! Just last night I was asked about some major life decisions by someone. As I told them, God is more than faithful to guide us if we will let go of our preconceptions and let Him show us what is good. I’m pretty consistent in giving that sort of good advice, but how consistent am I in following it myself? I need to be proactive in seeking God’s will, and not just go with the flow of whatever happens. As I will be saying in the message this morning, God has some awesome plans for us, and I need to seek them with joy and anticipation.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for the recent reminders of my own foolishness and frailty. As You told me years ago, may I indeed rest, relax, and rejoice in You, so that I may do Your will on Your schedule for Your glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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