Monday, January 26, 2009

Jesus Is Not Your Homeboy

I am a sinner and for that reason I am a huge fan of the doctrine of grace. In fact I could probably go toe-for-toe with Paul as the world's worst. Actually I have no idea how I would rank among sinners in God's economy but suffice it to say we would all be dead apart from the gifts of grace and mercy.

As I have read through the first few books of the Old Testament this year I see, as I'm sure many of you would, a particularly clear pattern that displays the holiness, sovereignty, and omnipotence of God. Read Exodus 20-40, this is the beginning of the Law of Moses and the instructions on how to build the Ark of the Covenant and the Tabernacle. These chapters include precise instructions and specifications for each item to be included and used in the tabernacle. These instructions were so precise because this is where the glory of the LORD was to reside with the people of Israel.

Only the high priest could enter into the Holy of Holies once a year and this was only after he had followed very specific cleansing rituals and was wearing special garments.

Why does this matter? Like I said, Im a very big fan of the doctrine of grace but I also see that there is a lot more to this picture than fluffy sheep-hugging Messiah. Jesus is not our homeboy. We can approach him with confidence to receive mercy and grace in a time of need (Hebrews 4:16) but we should not approach him arrogantly or with an attitude that might make him seem less than the eternal all powerful son of God.

Justin Taylor had 2 great clips on his blog talking about this very subject today. In Mark 14 Jesus stands before the Sanhedrin and they clearly ask him "are you the Christ?" He responds without any caveats or conditions "I am, and you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven."

The title Jesus frequently used, "the Son of Man", is not a reference to his humanity while "Son of God" is a reference to his diety. No, rather "the Son of Man" is a reference to Daniel 7 where Daniel said he saw "one like a son of man" who came before the Ancient of Days and was presented with all glory and a kingdom that all people should server him.

Jesus is not A son of man nor is he the son of A man...he is but this is not what the title mean. He is THE son of man as referenced in Daniel 7. This statement by Jesus in front of the Sanhedrin is particularly poignant because only one of them could enter the earthly Holy of Holies one time a year while Jesus, the son of man, can freely come and go before the LORD in the heavenly Holy of Holies.

The long and short, Jesus in not your homeboy.

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