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The Lion of Judah
on September 23, 2009
If you read all of the Bible, chapter by chapter, it becomes very clear that Jesus is not the ever gentle, tolerant "He loves you just the way you are" Jesus so often taught by pastors who pick and chose through Scripture to fit their sermons, and as so often is depicted in art. He is a dispenser of tough love when needed, and a scathing critic of hypocrisy and religion used for self-glorification, as most Pharisees did in His time, and as we can find within our own churches today. Yes, He is ALL love, tender and merciful to the broken, repentant sinner, and loves us in spite of our failings, but will tell us shape up in no uncertain terms, if we are willing to listen.
Author John MacArthur has written a timely book with "The Jesus You Can't Ignore," with so many denominations seeming to be scattered in their direction, and many of them with a weak message to their flock. We need the bold Jesus, to guide us and teach us. As MacArthur writes, "Nothing is more thoroughly evil than false religion, and the more false teachers try to cloak themselves in the robes of biblical truth, the more truly Satanic they are."
Chapter 6, "Hard Preaching," surmises how Jesus would be received today, were He preaching in a stadium of "typical twenty-first century evangelicals," and is right on target, and every chapter contains nuggets of truth well worth highlighting and remembering. On page 191, MacArthur writes, "The tenor of His words reminds us that spiritual warfare is just that: a battle. It is a fierce conflict against spiritual lies, damnable erroneous doctrine, and destructive false religion."