What causes the average person to be “taken aback” when they think about Jesus?
It happens in more ways than one, but it’s definitely not because Jesus doesn’t want us to receive Him with an open heart of faith (John 1:10-13); but people still find a reason not to come to, believe in or love Jesus in the way He desires.
Jesus understood that most people weren’t willing to come to Him because of fickleness, faithlessness and straight up foolishness (Matthew 7:14), but He still promised a blessing to those who could swallow the less palatable parts of the gospel due to personal taste and see the Father’s grace filled redeeming work through His Son (John 14:7-9). When one individual worried that Jesus wasn’t acting the way they thought the Messiah should, Jesus said, “…blessed is he who is not offended because of Me.” (Matthew 11:6)
What is so offensive about Jesus that people refuse to come to Him? What wrong do people see in Him? What wrong do you see in Him? What wrong has He committed? Pilate asked this very question:
“Then the governor said, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they cried out all the more, saying, “Let Him be crucified!” (Matthew 27:23)
Pilate got no answer to his question! Does avoiding the question sound familiar?
Perhaps the offensive thing isn’t what we see in Him – perhaps it’s the offensive thing we see in ourselves after we look at Him! That’s one undeniable conclusion the apostle John was led to include after witnessing the gospel with his own eyes.
“He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.” (John 3:18-21)
So what keeps you from coming to Him? EA
“And Nathanael said to him, “Can anything good come out of Nazareth?” Philip said to him, “Come and see.” (John 1:46)