The Jesus Problem
by M. Russell Thomas, PhD
A man got out of the boat and was met by a man possessed with demons! There wasn’t just one evil entity but a plethora of devils. So many that the label “Legion” was assigned. And their message was unified: “Don’t send us away!” They wanted to stay. They had set up camp and had a stronghold. But this was no warm, fuzzy endearing crowd. Quite the contrary. They were sucking the life right out of this man. We don’t know anything about the man’s history or how they got there, only that Legion had established a stronghold to the point that the man had to be chained hand and foot, and even then, the chains didn’t hold him, as he was often driven into “solitary places”. Legion tried to negotiate. “Send us into the pigs!” they cried. And while they got their way, it was a Pyrrhic Victory, as the entire heard goes headlong into a lake to meet their death. As it turns out, Legion had a problem. A Jesus Problem!
The head mucky-muckies of religion are in session. Like Legion, they have established a stronghold that is now being threatened. Alliances are formed and contracts signed. People are making money. The situation lacks the violence of Legion but theirs is a stronghold, nonetheless, established in the church...go figure! They’ve set up their flea market right there in the vestibules and foyers. They walk freely throughout the sacred place of worship selling, trading and bartering. Where’s the prayer? Where’s the reading of sacred Scripture? Where’s the worship of Jehovah God? Well, some certain man wondered the same thing. His conviction and principle demand action as his zeal foments. He begins to overturn the tables and forcefully usher the squatters out of church. Not exactly an excerpt from Dale Carnegie’s “How to Win Friends and Influence People”! There’s too much to lose. The committee is formed and a meeting called. Discussion centers on how to kill this man. They, too, had a Jesus problem.
“THIS LEAK IS THE GRAVEST, MOST UNFORGIVABLE SIN” is one of the recent headlines in our modern world. It relates to the leaked information that the Supreme Court has drafted legislation that will have a profound impact on abortion in this country. Immediately after the leak, groups gathered outside the Supreme Court building. Tension is high. Nine-foot walls were erected around the Supreme Court. Liberal and conservative groups gathered to say their piece and as far as I can tell, so far, the reactions have been limited to verbal altercations. The war continues as dissenters on the disruption that the potential ruling will place on abortions in America. The tables have been overturned, the merchants driven out and now, the committee plots. But, like Legion and the head religious mucky-muckies, there’s a problem. A Jesus Problem.
This Jesus Problem begins with His words on the cross, “IT…IS…FINISHED!” With the words that all authority in heaven and earth is given to Jesus (Matt. 28:18). So when He said to his followers, “ask what you will in My name and My Father will give it to you” (John 14:14; 15:16) He had the goods to back it up. Modern-day followers have taken Him up on the offer and have been calling on the Father for almost 50 years to end abortion. They ask Him to turn hearts, protect the unborn, and ultimately, break this country’s allegiance with the adversary. Specifically, to destroy the covenant with Molek and Jezebel, two evil spirits that demand child sacrifices (Look at Leviticus 20:1-5). These prayers have intensified and the cries of God’s children are reaching fever-pitch before the throne of God. The committee has convened and have issued their threats to kill judges, interrupt worship services, introduce radical legislative bills to make abortion permanent and encourage outrage from the masses who mistakenly still believe that this battle is all about choice. The strategy includes gaslighting and censorship of anyone with a different opinion. While I didn’t watch it, apparently the latest Saturday Night Live broadcast portrayed SCOTUS members as “medieval idiots”. Even our highest leadership in the land is blaming the conservatives and painting the Christian voice as an antiquated, false, “terrorist” voice spewing hatred all over society. But Christians are not their problem. It may feel that way but that’s not the truth.
Jesus is the problem and a problem that focuses on control: who’s in charge here? Jesus humbled himself and came to earth. Why? To offer Himself as a sacrifice for sin, absolutely. But He also came for another reason: to do only what the Father wanted Him to do. His life wasn’t His own. Control was yielded to the plans and purposes of the Father. In doing so, Jesus answered the question of who’s in charge here. The problem isn’t the supreme court or any group of God’s people. Jesus is the problem. If He had just not shown us how to do this thing we call life. If He had just not been the fulfillment of the law. If He had just not trusted the Father, that maybe, just maybe, the Father’s way is the path of abundant life. Legion, the Religious Leaders and now, the government and the woke, all trying to maintain their strongholds, are running headlong into the Jesus Problem: who is in charge here?! Theirs is not a problem with you and I, who serve Him. It’s a problem with Jesus.
Now believers in Jesus, abandon your discouragement and anxiety like a broken down Chevy having just gone its last mile, to this one thought: If the Jesus Problem is a matter of who’s in charge here? and you’ve followed Jesus’ example, then you qualify for His peace. Remember, The Jesus Problem didn’t work out too well for Legion and it didn’t work out too well for the Pharisees. It didn’t work out for Judas, Anania & Sapphira, Simon the Sorcerer, or Jezebel or Molek. So take heart, in the end, there…it…is. Truth! Jesus, as the Lion of Judah, with all authority under heaven and earth flanked by His bride. And the Jesus Problem is solved!