Monday, 25 July 2011

The Nazareth Manifesto

Luke 4:18-19 New International Version

   18 “The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
   because he has anointed me
   to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
   and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
   19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.”

Max Lucado refers to these verses as The Nazareth Manifesto. Manifesto is a public declaration of principles and intentions.

These verses are not only Jesus’ public declaration of His principles and intentions, as His followers they are also to be ours. If you are following Jesus it is important to know the principles and intentions by which you have committed to live. I spent a little time breaking down the verses in which Jesus gave this manifesto and the verses in Isaiah that Jesus is referencing.

This is the “life application” I understood from them:

When I chose to trust and follow Jesus the Holy Spirit fills me up and empowers me to be like Jesus. Not only does the Holy Spirit empower me but He qualifies (meets the criteria, meets the requirements, makes eligible) me, it is not anything I do, but chose to trust and follow Jesus that qualifies me, it is all Him.

When I call myself a Christian, when I chose to follow Jesus, I am making a public declaration that my life’s intentions (meaning, purpose, aim, intent, goal, objective, plan) are to:

  • Preach (share) the Good News (God loves the whole world, He has forgiven us all, and we can be free from death (sin and hell) and receive the full, abundant, eternal life when we trust and follow Jesus) to all those who need to hear it.
  • Comfort (console, reassure, soothe) all those who are physically, emotionally, spiritually suffering, distressed, tormented, worried, and weary.
  • Proclaim (make known) that there is freedom for those who are captive and being oppressed by sin and death (e.g. bitterness, anger, addiction, abuse, fear) and that they can see Jesus and live in the Way, Truth and Life.

I am a Christian, enter into my world…

I meet Jesus and my life was flipped upside down, I was filled with His Holy Spirit, who is transforming my mind and heart to produce love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, goodness, faithfulness and self-control.

I am a Christian, enter my world...
        Mine is a world that begins when I meet Jesus... I'm everyone and anyone, I felt that something was missing, that there was more...
        I searched for truth.

        I may explore different religions and lifestyles. I might try sex, drugs and rock n roll.   I ask questions. I don’t settle for the status quo. I keep pushing.

        Than one day I meet the Way, Truth and Life.  I meet Jesus.  He is everything I was searching for. He is the answer. He loves me…
I am complete in Him.  He is my Creator. The Lover of my Soul. My Friend and Savior

        When I first trust Him... a door is opened to a world... a world which I was created for, but was blind to… His Spirit fills me up and empowers me.
        This is it... this is where I belong...
        I am at peace here... I have been adopted into a family...
        I am a kid of the King.  I am free.  I am living...

        We Christians are all different... we come from different nations, cultures... we speak different languages, wear different clothing and eat different food… we have had different experiences and have different struggles and gifts… the only thing we have in common is that…

The Spirit of the Lord is upon us,
      he has anointed us to tell everyone about the Good News.
   He has sent us to make known that there is freedom for all people, and that now is the time to meet Jesus and chose to follow Him.

We welcome you into our world... the Kingdom of love, hope, peace and freedom in Christ Jesus our King

        Yes, I am a Christian.  My life is Jesus.

        I am a Christian, and this is my manifesto. I am not alone… will you join me?

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