Who Is the Real Jesus?
By Rick Warren
— February 16, 2011
Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.” John 9:39 (NIV)
"This real relationship is with the real Jesus who hung on a cross for you."
Why is a real relationship with Jesus so difficult? Why is it so challenging? It is because we tend to create a quasi-relationship with a made-up Jesus.
We create a version of Jesus in our minds, one who makes few demands on us. This made-up Jesus basically does what we expect, and then leaves us alone.
Here’s the problem, this made-up Jesus doesn’t care about us. He doesn’t care if we succeed or fail, if we’re blind or able to see, if we live or die.
But the real Jesus cares deeply about you. He loves you passionately. He’s been pursuing you since the day you were born. You can ignore him; you can curse him; you can refuse to believe he exists. But Jesus he passionately pursues you.
Jesus says in Revelation 3:20, “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me” (NIV).
He loves you passionately. He doesn’t want a relationship of rote prayers, rule keeping and formulas. As the apostle Paul says, “May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it. Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God” (Ephesians 3:19 NLT).
This is a messy, uncomfortable, passionate relationship. It’s rich and deep and ultimately fulfilling. That’s why Jesus won’t leave you alone, because he wants you to experience real and eternal life.
This real relationship is with the real Jesus who hung on a cross for you. Picture him there, looking across through time and into your eyes saying, “I love you. I’m willing to die for you. I’m willing to give everything so that you can know me and have a real life of passion, love and eternal life.”
Where are you at? Are you content to live the life that you’ve lived? Or are you ready to cross that line to live a passionate, messy, real relationship with a real Jesus who loves you?