What Separates Jesus From Every Other Teacher

Aristotle said to his disciples, “Follow my teachings.”  Socrates likewise said, “Follow my teachings.”  Buddha said to his disciples, “Follow my meditations.”  Confucius said to his disciples, “Follow my sayings.”  And Mohammed said to his disciples, “Follow my noble pillars.”

But Jesus says to his disciples, “Follow ME.”

In all the religions and philosophies of the world, a follower can follow the teachings of its founder without having a relationship with that founder.  But not so with Jesus Christ.  The teachings of Jesus cannot be separated from Jesus Himself.  Christ is still alive, and He embodies His teachings.  This is what separates Him from every teacher and moral philosopher in history…

…and then there was also that resurrection thing.

Our Own Personal Mission Field

Each of us has a personal mission field.  These are the people who are in our lives and don’t know Christ or have a church family.  It’s imperative that we first pray for them and then for a divinely appointed opportunity to have a conversation or interaction that leads to the gospel.  Before we try to talk to them, we need to walk with them in terms of identifying ourselves as someone who genuinely loves them.  That takes actions more than words.

2 Kinds of Churches

There are two kinds of churches. Some ask the question, “What can we do to improve our church?”  And others, “How can we serve others?”  The former operate from self-focus.  The latter operates from focusing on others.  Some just care about their own preservation, image, and success.  And others care about the needs of others.  We can only do that when we are confident and secure in our own identity.

When you know you are, you’ll know what to do.

2 Ways People Seek Happiness and Fulfillment

According to Tim Keller, there are 2 basic ways people try to find happiness and fulfillment:

  1. Moral conformity: Living “RIGHT”
  2. Self-Discovery: Living “FREE”

Everyone chooses one of these two ways and everyone thinks those in the other group are the problem in the world.

Those people are “immoral.”  NO!  Those people are “bigoted.”

Some go back and forth or hide behind one even though they are part of the other.  And BOTH of these approaches are WRONG!

Actually the 2 ways are more similar than they appear.  Moral conformists have the sin of pride as a barrier.  It’s how they CONTROL life.  If I am “good,” then I will be blessed.

But it doesn’t work that way.

This means you can rebel against God by breaking the rules OR by keeping all of them diligently.

You can avoid Jesus as Savior by keeping all the moral laws.  Then God OWES you answered prayer and a good life.  Religious people try to get leverage over God, to control Him.

They obey to get things.  They don’t obey God to GET GOD HIMSELF.  Sin is not just breaking the rules.  It is putting yourself in the place of God as Lord.

So both ways are wrong and lead to Hell.