Why Jesus? This question will function as the theme for the Lutheran Student Fellowship – Region 12 Spring Retreat. They were silly enough to ask me to present and lead them through a process of answering this question for themselves.
The question “Why Jesus?” makes me immediately think, “Why any God or gods?” Why is this a thing for human beings? Why do we worship? consider the supernatural and the otherworldly? Why do we speak out-loud when we know that no one but a god could hear us?
One of my seminary professors, Dr. Robert Kolb, answered this question in this way: What we are seeking when we seek a god or the true God is three traits: Identity, Security, and Meaning. They are the biggest human questions we have: Who am I? Am I safe/free? What am I here for?
False gods generally do a good job of fulfilling two of the three traits. Money will give you identity and security, but will usually fail to provide you with meaning and purpose. Making an idol of sexuality will give us identity and meaning, but will fail to give us a sense of security that really enables us to live freely.
Jesus gives us all three, however. He gives us an identity that is uniquely created to exist within His Body, the Body of Christ with all of its different gifts. He gives us security in the forgiveness of our sins which assures us that there is nothing that can separate us from Him. He gives us meaning by including us into His Kingdom, and inviting us to make decisions in our lives based on that inclusion.
Why Jesus? Here is how I answer that question: Because I am Jay Allen Winters, Baptized into Jesus Christ. Because Jesus has forgiven me and promises to always forgive my sin and never turn me away. Because He has included me into His priesthood of all believers, and invites me to write the story of my life in terms of that character set.
How about you? Why Jesus?