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Is Jesus Bigger than Your Favorite Football Team?

October 2, 2012

From his excellent devotional on preaching the gospel to yourself daily, Joe Thorn writes:

Dear Self,

Take note–your view of Jesus tends to shrink over time. It is not that your theology itself drifts, but sometimes you so focus on one aspect of Jesus that you tend to forget the rest. The result is a shrinking Jesus (in your faith). And as your shrinking Jesus becomes small Jesus, he is easily eclipsed by your idols and ego.

The bigger and more biblical your understanding of who Jesus is, the more likely he is to be such an object of love and adoration that the idols that aim at capturing your attention and swaying your allegiance will lose their power. This is why you sometimes lack earnestness for the kingdom and the glory of God while you overflow with passion concerning temporal things. Instead of making a joyful noise and singing earnestly for the victory Christ has over sin and death, you express a dispassionate approval and mouth the words to the songs sung in worship. But there is often a fire in your belly and shouts of joy when your favorite college football team is victorious over the competition. This is probably why the church is shrinking in North America–because small Jesus does not compel us to talk of him (much less suffer for him). And small Jesus is too little to arrest the attention of the world.

So please remember–Jesus is bigger than you tend to think. He is the perfect revelation of God, the radiance of his glory, the exact imprint of his nature; he is the Creator and Sustainer of all that exists. Everything belongs to him and exists for him. He is the author of your salvation, the perfecter of your faith, and the only one in whom you can find life.

Joe Thorn, Note to Self: The Discipline of Preaching to Yourself (Wheaton: Crossway, 2011), 47-48.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 2, 2012 12:11 pm

    “But there is often a fire in your belly and shouts of joy when your favorite college football team is victorious over the competition”

    So true and so convicting! How much more do we enjoy talking about, indeed, celebrating our successes, our sports teams success, our hobbies etc. Do our lives…do our faces…do our behaviors…show the incredible joy we have in the victory Christ won for us? Somehow I think we New Englanders still think “religion” is a somber affair, one to be agonized over instead of celebrated. Expressions of great joy and revelry are flow naturally for Patriots victories but checked at the door for worship service, lest God think we are not sufficiently serious about Him. Our great joy, expressed in its fullest (but with reasonable guardrails against superficial emotionalism) should be a hallmark of the Christian Life. I submit that we show God we ARE serious about Him when we most celebrate the victory of the Cross.

  2. October 2, 2012 12:45 pm

    Good word, friend.

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