Wednesday, April 18, 2012

A Book About Jesus

A pastor led a Bible study for some new people in his congregation. The church had sponsored a group of Laotian immigrants and was helping them make the U.S. their home. These folks had been attending his church, but didn’t know much about the Christian faith. The pastor aimed to teach his new friends foundational Christian principles through the study.

One week, they read a passage about Jesus calming a big storm. The pastor began to interpret the scripture for the new attendees. He described how Jesus calms the figurative storms of life. He described how Jesus eases the challenges that arise in relationships and finances and careers. His Laotian friends gave him a blank look.

After an awkward pause, one of the students asked, “Do you mean that Jesus actually calmed the wind and sea in the middle of a storm?" The pastor thought the Laotians doubted the miracle. He insisted that they not focus on the particularities of the story, but see how Jesus might help them during hard times. They gave him another blank look.

Another student interrupted the silence. She said, "Well, if Jesus calmed the wind and the waves, he must be a powerful man!" The group of students nodded the heads excitedly and began talking with one another in Laotian. They were struck with the wonder of Jesus’ character.

The pastor realized that, in trying to teach the foundations of the faith, he had forgotten one of its most foundational principles: the Bible is about Jesus. The Bible isn’t as much about our lives as it is about Jesus. The pastor realized his friends understood the scripture better than he did.

As you go through this week, hold onto the most foundational point of the Bible: Jesus. As you read the scriptures, you will see His incredible character revealed in a lot of different ways. Before you begin to interpret what He means for your life, simply get to know Him and His power.

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