By Elizabeth Prata
Two thousand years is a long time. That’s two millennia. Two bundles of hundreds. Fifty generations, give or take. A long time.
Jesus ascended sometime around 33 AD. Before He left, He promised to come back.
He is coming back.
Men of Galilee,” they said, “Why do you stand here looking into the sky? This same Jesus, who has been taken from you into heaven, will come back in the same way you have seen Him go into heaven.” (Acts 1:11).
When He returns, sinners will stand before Him to receive their punishment for their sins. (Psalm 145:20).
We will stand before Him also. We won’t be receiving wrath or condemnation or punishment as the wicked will, but we will account for everything we said and everything we did in His name. (2 Corinthians 5:10, Matthew 12:36, Revelation 22:12).
We have one job. As Christians, we are charged with bringing one message and one message only, containing its necessary elements, to people whom Jesus charged should hear it. (All the world.) We have a job title: Ambassador.
Therefore we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God were making His appeal through us. (2 Corinthians 5:20).
Our sphere is international. Did you know that? The life I live would seem to belie that statement. Maybe yours, too. I have a small job and live in a small town. However that’s only surface. What I say and what I do is seen and heard internationally and inter-galactically. God in heaven hears and sees. Jesus hears and sees. The Spirit in me certainly hears and sees. The holy angels hear and see. The unholy angels (demons) hear and see. If we blog or tweet, anyone in the world can read it. Our efficacy within the sphere Jesus gave us impacts things locally, globally, and intergalactically.
We ambassadors have a Boss: Jesus. If you work at a job for a long time, you might notice your boss changing. If he or she was new when you started, perhaps he changed into a more mature or patient boss. If your boss was old when you started, perhaps over time she has become crabby or a poor listener. Perhaps the Brand of your company has changed or the message of the brand has changed.
Unlike our earthly bosses, Jesus doesn’t change. The message doesn’t change. There is no wiggle room. The message, the task, and the boss is eternally firm and unchanging. We have one Boss who never changes, one message that never changes, and one job that never changes.
He is coming back.
This is what they forget.
Not only is He coming back, but THIS SAME JESUS is coming back. (Acts 1:11). The Jesus that the so-called evangelical world calls Jesus is not the same Jesus that left this world. The boyfriend Jesus or warm fuzzies Jesus or accepting of any-Gospel Jesus is not the one returning to earth. Yes, He is loving, tender, and forgiving, but that is not all He is.
He was angry at times. (Mark 3:5). He rebuked hypocrites. He called some of them vipers. He hated what sin does to sinners. He said that the Pharisees were whitewashed tombs (dead graves!). He was wrathful upon those abusing the Temple. He had zeal for His Father’s house. (John 2:13-22). His wrath already abides on sinners. (Romans 1:18). He is coming in blood and wrath and judgment. (Revelation 14:20).
It’s convenient to forget that facet of the unchanging Jesus. It’s easy to rationalize that we’re allowed to tweak the message. He’s so nice, He won’t mind, right? It’s normal to think that we can talk our way into accepting any ole gospel, after all, we talk our way in or out of things to our parents/professors/bosses so often.
No. This same Jesus is returning. What does this mean to you? How can we apply that Acts 1:11 verse to how we’ve behaved and what we’ve accepted or taught as deviations from the one message? We’re ambassadors, after all. There will be a job evaluation. (1 Corinthians 3:12).
We have the Holy Spirit. We have THE message, We have life.
Don’t forget: Jesus, this same Jesus, is returning. Our job evaluation as Ambassadors will be presented before Him. How did you (I) do?