Unbelieving scholars love to sit in their book-lined studies, supported by churches they no longer believe are relevant, but whose financial support they greedily accept. There they pontificate on the reasons they refuse to accept the Gospels as authentic accounts of Jesus.
They read the Gospels to criticize, not to learn. One such scholar took time to seriously read as a student the Gospel of Mark. Lo, and behold, the story seized his mind. And as he read he felt the Reality of the Person limned by the author.
Indeed, while Jesus is only the object of higher criticism, he can be anything the skeptic WANTS. But when even skeptics become students of Jesus Christ in the Gospels, humanity flutters into submission before his Majesty!
Skepticism about Jesus Christ is a popular pastime in America, especially in academia, spreading from university classrooms into every phase of education and politics.
And it’s easy. Anyone can publicly promote homosexuality as an acceptable alternative lifestyle—and no one will arrest him. Or publicly promote feminism as the answer to male-dominated life—and no one will arrest him. Or publicly tell the world that God is dead and we’re better off without him—and no one will arrest him.
To the shame of American life and the American church, such public sentiments in Saudi Arabia will get a person arrested and punished! We won’t be that radical, that intolerant, that hateful! That previous generations would take a public stand against any of the above, yes. But not America now, since we have learned the value of diversity in culture, with its accompanying demand of tolerance of all behavior.
The story of Potiphar’s wife vis á vis Joseph as a slave, and Joseph as a national powerhouse, resonates with powerful truth regarding unbelievers and unbaptized sinners vis á vis Jesus Christ. For all who now, in the comfort of a culture that tolerates all moral and religious views, however silly, stupid or outrageously blasphemous, who feel justified in living without Jesus, THINK!
What will they do when they see him high and exalted on his glittering GOLD throne, dressed in blinding-white robes, surrounded by heavenly beings constantly shouting his NAME as LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, Judge of all humans ever to live, including all who don’t believe he matters?
How will they feel when they find themselves unprepared and unable to join the Heavenly Throng of those saved-by-the-blood-of-Jesus? Mortals shouting glory, Glory, GLORY to the FATHER and the LAMB—the Great I AM!
And what will they think when they long to, but can’t, sing the Songs of Zion? And when they find they can never enter the New Jerusalem but must remain outside—longing to enter but unable because they chose to disbelieve Jesus Christ could be so encompassingly GREAT! Fini
In Matthew 27:25, the Jewish leadership harangued, beleaguered and bullied gutless Pilate into killing Jesus. When he protested vehemently, washing his hands as a declaration of innocence in Christ’s death, “all the people answered, ‘Let his blood be on us and on our children’” Matthew 27:25.
Yet, within weeks, they listened to bold peasant-apostles preach Christ’s victory over death; they watched them baptize penitents right and left; they witnessed one miracle after another. They then had another perspective: “You have filled Jerusalem with your teaching and are determined to make us guilty of this man’s blood” Acts 5:28.
What we have in these two instances is the difference in opposing Jesus when it’s safe and opposing him when he has become dangerous.
Potiphar’s wife could understand the difference. Assuming she survived the intervening 13 years after having Joseph imprisoned, she never gave a second thought to having him punished for repudiating her advances. How dare a Hebrew slave dishonor her by honoring his God more than her allure! She likely paid no attention when hearing that a former Hebrew slave had become second in command to Pharaoh. But hearing his name got her attention: the very man her scorned fury jailed! And saw him dressed in linen robes, gold chain around his neck, Pharaoh’s signet ring on his finger. When in public she saw him passing in his chariot, runners preceding and shouting to all “Make Way! Bow Down!”—and found herself on her face until he passed!
What would she have thought then? End Part I