July 14, 2022
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You know, you can learn something from a cab driver, even if his vocabulary is R-rated-or maybe even X-rated in this case. I was on a trip to an airport in a cab a while back. And well, without even knowing it, I must have hit some trigger in this cab driver. Oh, man! All of a sudden I couldn't believe what started to come out of his mouth. He started to pour out all kinds of racial hatred, and he said, "I don't really care about anything in the world or anybody but myself, and let those starving people starve, and let those poor people be poor." Wow!
And then he started to cuss out just about everybody in the world. When he finished with most people, he turned his attention to the church, and he said, "All the church cares about is money, and they've got all this wealth, and they could help solve the problems." I want to tell you, the atmosphere in that cab was dark, and tense, and profane, and angry. I mean, this was a very bitter, cynical guy. To tell you the truth, I felt like sitting back and reading my magazine or getting out. But I mentioned one thing to him as we neared the airport, and suddenly the cab got calm and the cabby was smiling. And that moment reminded me of a focus that's just too easy to forget.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "The Message That Opens Hearts."
Now, our word for today from the Word of God is found in 1 Corinthians 2. Paul begins to talk about that wonder-working word. It is, in fact, the word that calms an angry, tense atmosphere in a taxi cab to the airport. "When I came to you, brothers," Paul said, "I did not come with eloquence or superior wisdom as I proclaimed to you the testimony about God. For I resolved to know nothing while I was with you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified."
Well, as I chatted with this cab driver and he let me get a word in, he had been attacking the church. And I said, "You know, I remember a sign that a demonstrator waved back in the '70s out in California. It said, "Jesus, yes; Christianity, no." I said, "You know, I can understand why you might be cynical about the church, or about some things in Christianity, even about Christians. But you know what? That's why I've staked my life on Jesus Christ. There's just no cause for cynicism there." You know there is something about that name, like the song says. Because beginning to talk about Jesus calmed this man down, seemed to lighten his load, and actually brought a smile to his face.
As you try to represent Christ in your family, or your school, or your job, your message is not Christianity, it is not church, it is not a religion. Paul said, "I came to you with a person-Jesus Christ." Your message is a person. Keep bringing folks back to Him. It's all about Jesus!
So many objections to being a Christian melt away when you turn the attention to Jesus. "Oh, Christians are hypocrites!" Well, is Jesus? "Christians are inconsistent." Is Jesus? "All the church cares about is money." Does Jesus? What is it about Jesus you don't like? See, He's the issue. We tend to get off on detours about doctrine, church, politics. This is a relationship with Jesus Christ-no more/no less. I'm so glad Jesus didn't say, "Follow my church." Or, "Follow my followers." Or, "Follow my leaders." What did He say? "Follow Me."
Every time you have an opportunity, even with an x-rated enemy of the Gospel, turn the attention to Jesus. Maybe you're the one who has had all the bad experiences; all the bad ideas about Christians and Christianity, and maybe for good reason. Can I direct your attention today to Jesus, the man who loved you enough to die on the cross for what you've done wrong? And who was powerful enough to walk out of His grave, and is ready to enter your life today and change it as only He can? Listen to the name: Jesus. I hope you know Him. If you don't, I'd invite you to visit our website. And let me explain to you there how you can. It's ANewStory.com.
And if you do belong to Him, don't be ashamed of His name. You'll discover when you speak His name, what angels and demons already know so well. There really is something about that name.