Have you met Jesus?
Prior to 2013, my only conscious encounter with Jesus was through his words found in the Bible. It was no different than reading someone’s biography to seek knowing the person through his or her struggles and successes.
But today if I was to tell anyone that I had met Jesus, they would probably suggest that I am lying or delusional.
My encounter with Jesus was not as Mary Magdalene’s encounter following his resurrection. My encounter with Jesus was not as the disciples’ who sat down and ate with him following His resurrection. Yet, my encounter with Jesus was very tangible. It wasn’t in a vision that he filled me up with the Holy Spirit. It was on a Sunday morning, a day like today, during worship that he overwhelmed me with the Holy Spirit and caused me released of all my anxieties, and doubts, and fears. After then, he appeared to me in many visions.
So today, if you were to ask me, “Have you met Jesus?” I would say, “not I, but he came down on me and met me”. And the experience of our meeting could not be contained by one or many books.
In the Bible, you find stories how Greeks were to go through hoops and loops before they were allowed to meet with Jesus. Sometimes, that’s how it feels when others come to meet with Jesus. We take them through hoops and loops. But the reality is that we fear admitting that we haven’t met Jesus the way that many are boasting to have met him.
The gospel made me curious about Jesus. Many had said many things about him, but the gospel left me thirsty to not only believe that his words have a level of truthfulness, but to know him. It was the pouring of the Holy Spirit in me that filled the thirst left by the gospel. And Jesus did that, Jesus the Baptizer of the Holy Spirit.
“I baptize you with water for repentance. But after me comes one who is more powerful than I, whose sandals I am not worthy to carry. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire.” (Matthew 3:11)
My friends, until you know Jesus, you will always be thirsty to know more and more. Until you hear the gospel and treasure it, you will have no thirst for knowing Jesus. The difference between Jesus and others of old you’ve read about is that you can only experience those of old through their words. But Jesus is alive, and he can make you know him by baptizing you with the Holy Spirit.
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will beg in you.” (John 14:15-17)
I fell in love with Jesus after hearing the gospel from Bob Christopher. He said it in a way that made sense to me. And I suddenly became interested in knowing what else did Jesus say that I had entirely misunderstood. And the more I learned, the more Jesus and God made a whole lot of sense to me. And when I started comparing what I had heard and treasured from Bob with what I had heard for many years but had a difficulty to digest, I suddenly realized how totally lost in our thoughts and beliefs that we’ve been about Jesus.
Bob wasn’t just telling me something opposite of what I have always heard, he was telling something that truly made sense to me. The whole new covenant helped me with turning away from my old beliefs, the very beliefs that I had been swallowing and rejecting by my own failures. The new covenant settled everything to even me, a Gentile by birth.
““This is the covenant I will make with them after that time, says the Lord. I will put my laws in their hearts, and I will write them on their minds.”
Then he adds:
“Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more.” And where these have been forgiven, sacrifice for sin is no longer necessary.” (Hebrews 10:16-18)
The new covenant caused me to become thirsty for the real Jesus, the tangible Jesus. And one day, without any announcement, as my mind and heart together were tuned to the gospel song, “Follow Me”, singing the song while treasuring the new covenant in mind and heart, the Holy Spirit came down on me and filled me with joy, peace and rest that I have never known before.
Read the new covenant my friends. It will cause you to thirst to the real Jesus, the Jesus you can deal with, and he will pour into your thirst the Holy Spirit whom he so promised to everyone who believe in him. Only the new covenant can deliver to you the real Jesus. Whatever religion is giving nowadays is like the work of some generic brand that sometimes promises to do the same, while yet lacking the core of the real thing. Jesus is the real “thing”.
The new covenant is a deal you can grab and run with. Take it. Anything else has an expiration date on it.
Jesus is real and well alive. Therefore, you can know him. He knows you. And he wants you to know him. More than enough reason for you to know him. He will not push you away.