The Upward Look, by Jon Forrest
To Be Like Jesus

Bill was a drunk, converted at a city mission. Before his conversion he had gained a reputation as a tramp and alcoholic for whom there was no hope. But when he was converted everything changed. He became the most caring person at the mission. He spent all his days doing whatever needed to be done. There was never anything he was asked to do that he considered beneath him. Whether it was cleaning up vomit left by some alcoholic or scrubbing toilets used by men who left them filthy, Bill did it all with a heart of gratitude. He could be counted on to feed any man who wandered in off the streets and care for his needs when he was unable to care for himself.

One evening after the mission director delivered his evangelistic message to the usual crowd of solemn men with drooped heads, one of them came down to the altar and kneeled to pray, crying out to God to help him change. The repentant drunk kept shouting, "O God make me like Bill! Make me like Bill! Make me like Bill!" The director of the mission leaned over and said, "Wouldn't it be better if you pray, Make me like Jesus?" After thinking about it for a few seconds, the man looked up and asked, "Is he like Bill?"

When people look at your life, what do they see? Do they see the image of Christ stamped on your life or do they see something else. A vital part of the Holy Spirit’s work is to transform us into the image of God’s Son. He takes a dead sinful soul and regenerates it into the resurrected to vibrant life, Son of God, Jesus Christ. While there is an initial change, the full change takes place throughout a lifetime of walking with and in Him.

In Romans 7, Paul writes of the struggle to be obedient to the Old Testament Law. He says that his inner-being wants to do the right thing, but his flesh keeps screwing it up.

Finally, he cries out in desperation, What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord! So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.
Romans 7:24-25

Paul answers his own question in chapter 8
Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. Romans 8:1-2

From death to life, Jesus though the power of the Holy Spirit not only saves us from the position of condemnation, but from the condition of condemnation. The same grace that saves us from hell changes the heart that put us in that situation. He wants to make you like Bill, I mean, like Jesus so that others will find Him through us. Are you that living example?

This Sunday we will continue in our series of messages called LIFE IN THE SPIRIT When God Moves in to Stay with a sermon titled A Matter of Life and Death based on Romans 7:21-8:12. Come and see how the Holy Spirit brings about that transformation from dead flesh to living Spirit.

Oh, to be like Him,

No Comments




no categories


no tags