In Jesus’ presence, there is comfort and peace — and complete honesty
In his presence there is comfort, in his presence there is peace. When we seek the Father’s heart we will find such bless’d assurance, In the presence of the Lord.
Cover me Lord with your presence.
The song concentrates on the ascended Lord and our spiritual connection with the Father and the Son. What the song does not mention is the importance of truth in the presence of Jesus.
In a recent reading of the gospels, I was struck by Jesus’ total honesty with the people in his presence. He seldom left people complacent with their lives, because he always told them the truth about themselves and the condition of their lives.
Jesus possessed high standards, never hesitating to speak honestly to people. He never sugarcoated any situation.
In Luke’s gospel, when he was invited home for dinner with a Pharisee, a woman “who had lived a sinful life in that town” washed his feet with perfume, her tears and her kisses. Simon the Pharisee questions why Jesus would allow such a woman to touch him, and Jesus sets him straight with the story of a man who owes 500 denarii and another who owes 50. The moneylender forgives both debts, and Jesus asks who will love the moneylender most. Simon answers that it will be the one had the biggest debt canceled.
Then Jesus confronts his host with reality. He points out that Simonhad not given him a welcoming kiss, nor did he have a servant washJesus’ feet — both serious breaches of hospitality.
In the presence of Jesus, Simon had to see himself as a poor host andman who too easily passed judgment on the woman and even Jesus.
Jesus’ apostles frequently were wrangling about position — who will begreatest in the kingdom? In Luke 9, Jesus used a little child to showthem the spirit they must have to be his followers. He warned thatbeing greatest requires being the greatest servant.
In Matthew 20, the mother of James and John asks if her sons can sit onthe right and left of Jesus in his kingdom. He tells her that thosepositions are for God to determine.
In the presence of Jesus, the apostles, especially James and John,learned that earthly standards of position have no heavenly value.
In John 4, the Samaritan woman whom Jesus asked for a drink of waterhad her whole sinful life exposed as Jesus talked to her. What Jesustold her made her realize that he was not an ordinary man. She told allher friends about Jesus, and the whole community believed in Jesus.
In the presence of Jesus, the woman at the well and her community learned about the salvation Jesus offered.
In Matthew 19, when a rich young man came to Jesus, asking aboutgaining eternal life, Jesus told him to obey the commandments. In theconversation that followed, the young man indicated that he had keptall the commands and wanted to know what he still lacked. Jesus toldhim to sell all his possessions and give to the poor in order to havetreasurers in heaven.
The man had his good works confirmed, but he saw the reality of his own materialistic values.
Peter often was forced to see the truth of his character. Although hewas one of the first to confess his belief that Jesus was the Christ,the son of God, his doubts surfaced when he wanted to join Jesus inwalking on the water. When he took his eyes off Jesus and looked at thewaves, he began to sink, and Jesus told him he had doubts and littlefaith.
At the last supper, as Jesus told that someone would betray him, Peterdeclared that he would never desert him. But Jesus warned him that hewould deny Jesus three times before the dawning of the next day — aprediction that became reality early the next morning. Jesus remindedhim with a single look at the moment of the third denial.
In John 21, before the ascension, Jesus asked him three times if he loved him — a solemn reminder of his weakness.
In the presence of Jesus, there is comfort, peace and blessedassurance. But his presence also requires truth and honesty so that wecan change and be better people who follow Jesus.
FeedbackI will appreciate if I can be helped in the manner of Christian leadership.Kennedy kaundaThe salvation armylusaka, zambian
zambiaNovember, 28 2012