Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Ten Things I Wish Jesus Never Said has become of one of my favorite books to read and re-read. It is a basis for a bible study I have put together for a small group. It is a difficult and challenging book to read and absorb. This book deals with subjects and areas of my life, particularly my life that I would rather ignore than have confronted.

Jesus, in many ways, has been misunderstood, misquoted, and certainly misapplied. He has been thought of as a gifted and ingenious teacher to a raving lunatic or mad man. We even have a record of where his own brothers thought he might be insane.

There is no doubt that when Jesus arrived on the scene that the religious crowd was in for a surprise. The events that surrounded his birth and the few insights that we have as he grew older were certainly disturbing. How he lived, what he said and what he taught was far different than what the Pharisees, Scribes, and Priests had been teaching. Jesus taught with authority, clarity, and veracity

We can call his teachings controversial, mind boggling, or even shocking. He made tremendous demands on those who followed him. He made it patently clear what it was that made the majority of religion his enemy. The way to eternal life and happiness was a difficult path. Jesus taught hard things.

Those hard things include such statements as, "If your right eye causes you to sin, gouge it out and throw it away;" If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me;" or "Not everyone who says unto me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven." The religious ruling crowd nor the masses could understand such statements.

Mark Twain, as an unbeliever, remarked, "It's not what I don't understand about the bible that bothers me; its what I do understand that bothers me." Of course the hardest thing about what Jesus taught is applying them to our lives and making the necessary changes or adjustments.

Victor Kuligin does a masterful job of tackling 10 difficult and shocking statements of Jesus and applying them to our everyday lives. He takes just 10 teachings of Jesus and breaks them down for us to clearly see the instruction and implication for each one of us.

Kuligin says: “With the rise of the health-and-wealth gospel and prosperity teaching, we have become accustomed to a comfortable, ‘What a Friend we have in Jesus’ Messiah. It is a picture of Jesus I call ‘Jesus-lite.’ Great taste, less demanding.”

He goes on to say: “The teaching of Jesus was often harsh. He was not a preacher of convenience, but hardship; not a preacher of comfort, but suffering.”

I have read and re-read this book. It is quite challenging and I highly recommend it. Reading this book will change the way you think about how you “do church.” Reading it can transform your thinking about the cost of true salvation and discipleship. Please, pick up a copy today!

Victor Kuligin is a professor and Academic Dean at Bible Institute of South Africa, as well as an international lecturer, author, and assistant pastor. He and his wife Rachel, have served with Africa Inland Missions for the past twelve years in Namibia, Africa. They are now serving under the Pioneers in Kalk Bay (Cape Town) Republic of South Africa They have five children.

13 comments:

WELCOME TO MY WORLD OF POETRY: said...

Most intruiging title, another good post from you Gregg,always leave with plenty to think about.

Have a nice day,

Yvonne.

arlee bird said...

I'm adding this to my wish list. It sounds very interesting and might make for a challanging study.
Maybe I could consider it for an upcoming Bible study at the church I attend.

Lee
Tossing It Out

Lloyd said...

Thanks Gregg, I'm going down to the local Christian book store and get me a copy. Sounds really interesting. God bless, Lloyd

Kansas Bob said...

I love the way that Jesus uses prophetic hyperbole to communicate the importance of our inner life and how it is important to be spiritually healthy.

AL said...

Great post, and sounds like a very interesting book.

I read an article recently called "Spiritual Diabetes" that was quite similar on how the modern Gospel waters down the message and leaves out the hard teachings. You can check it out here:
http://www.newswithviews.com/Daubenmire/dave98.htm

Gregg said...

Yvonne - I am glad you have something to "chew on." I trust you are blessed!

Lee - this is a good book. I have a question about something the author had said, and the publisher gave him by email and he answered my question and we have become friends. He is a great guy who loves the Lord and has a great ministry. I hope you do get the book for yourself and it would make a great study for a SS class or small group.

Lloyd - you will enjoy it but you will also have to take stock of somethings. hopefull not many, but we always need to think where we are at in the Lord.

Al - thanks for your kind words, I will check out the site.

Carol Fleisher said...

Sounds like an interesting book. I am going to have to get a copy of it. I think it might be a good book for our Bible Study Class. Thanks for sharing. :)

Loren said...

I love books that challenge us and this sounds like a great one! I will be adding this to the list of must haves! Thanks so much!

LibbyLibbyLibbyLibbyLibby said...

Awesome! Thanks for the heads up on the book. I'm always looking for something to help me do bible studies for ladies in jail...this may help me out a bit. Thanks!!!

THE OLD GEEZER said...

Sounds like an interesting book. I haven't taken the time to read a good book in a long time.
I plan to buy a copy ASAP and get started reading it.

Thanks, Ron

Gregg said...

Carol - I hope you do get the book, I think you will find it both challenging and helpful to spiritual growth. It would be a good book for a study.

Loren - glad to hear you are adding it to your list. It will challenge you.

Libby - this is for Christians who need to grow and want to grow. I think ladies in prison will find it stimulating, interesting, and challenging as any other study if they are serious about the Lord and His word. Or it can be a dog.

Ron - I hope you pick it up. You will like it. I think that you can also grow as a result of it, even though you are wise, godly, and Christlike, we all can continue to be stimulated for more growth in Christ.

mike fox said...

cool blog you have here. God bless

arlee bird said...

I had a 30% off coupon for Borders so I ordered this book. It wasn't available at my nearest Christian bookstore. It's on backorder at Borders-- hope it doesn't take too long to get it.

Lee
Tossing It Out