‘SO YOU WANT TO BE LIKE JESUS’
Christians have often during worship service or at other times have sang the song echoing these following words:
- "to be like Jesus, to be like Jesus, oh how I long to
be like Him, so meek and lowly, so humble and Holy, oh how I long to be like Him."
Far too many
times we allow terms, comments, phrases, and even songs to be used without the dept and significance of what is actually being used via a specific venue albeit vocal, written, or electronic media; the true essence is somehow lost in our cliched
presentation. To help understand here is an example: we hear people say ‘love you’ but their ‘love you’s possess no true qualities of endearment which should be the compelling and propelling back-up action behind the utterance. So if
I say I want to be an athlete then the essence of what I said should be that I am willing to do what it takes to be the athlete I desire. If I state I would like to be in academia because of inspiration I received from one of my teachers, then there must be
a realization and an engagement into some serious study. Sometimes we want to aspire to a goal, but we do not want to do what it takes to achieve the goals we aspire to.
Jesus says if any man would come after Him, let him deny himself, take up his cross and follow Him. Ref. Matthew 16:24; Mark 8:34, and Luke 9:23....Jesus is putting it out there, if you want
to follow Me and be like Me, you got to pick up the cross; but too many of us have no idea as to what exactly it means to pick up the cross! A song writer by the name George Bennard, in 1913 penned these words... "On a hill far away stood an old
rugged cross, The emblem of suffering and shame" Now if the cross is an emblem of suffering and shame, ‘then why would I want to be a part of that, that just does not make sense
to me,’ what is in the mind and hearts of some is ‘I want to walk, but I do not want walk the hill’! In Jesus’ case He walked and carried His cross not only on level ground, but He walked His cross up the hill of the skull
(Golgotha). People want to sometimes barely to walk level ground, and will even run if it is going down hill, but I don’t do up hill, that’s too much work.
The cross represents a serious degree of toil because it is heavy and awkward, the cross has lent it’s purpose to being a backdrop facilitating death, everyone who is affixed to
a cross is or was put on public display and humiliation. All who have been on the cross have been mocked for their crimes, and based on societal rules the cross represents their just recompense, (consequence or judgement) and ultimate end . The cross represents
one of the most gruesome forms of punishment, for an individual who has been sentenced to death by crucifixion, this person suffers all of the public indignities for their acts, while on the cross with nails driven into palms or wrists and then into the feet.
All while slowly dying, their legs might be purposely broken and after one was crucified and now dead, they were left on the cross for a period of time to hopefully encourage one not to follow the path of the executed, for the cross was to be a testament and
indicator of what their fate would be, if their crimes were of a heinous nature. The word cross is a Latin word crux, which is "in general, a tree, frame, or other wooden instruments of execution, on which criminals were impaled or hanged"
and "in particular, a cross".
So here again you say you want to be like Jesus, and He says take up your cross and follow Him! Here is this man Jesus, who did nothing worthy of death, but had His death take place on a cross, this Jesus did good where ever He went, i.e. healing the sick,
unstopping deaf ears, un-muting voices, feeding multitudes of people with five barley loaves of bread, raising Lazarus from the dead, He cast demons of a man living among the tombs, and this is just a micro, micro list.
To be continued: