Jesus Does NOT care! REALLY?! Yes it is true, it is what I believe. Jesus does not care.
With this belief, I live my life confidently, as I move in and out of each day.
I go to a restaurant with my buddy Brad. We sit at the table. We get a menu. Brad decides on the chicken fried steak. I am torn between the Reuben sandwich and the Cobb Salad. What should I order? I need some immediate help. I ask the server for her recommendation. I ask the waitress, why? Well she has an idea about the food, and although these are two completely different dishes she sees and serves them daily. She could be helpful as I try and choose. I have to make a choice. I choose the Rueben, “the best in the city!” And dinner is served. I did not pray for wisdom, I did not seek God’s help. Oh, by the way, Jesus does not care which choice I make.
After Lunch, I am running errands around Tulsa. The fuel light in my car pops on and makes the beep sound. I know this warning and what it means. I have enough gas in my car to go around 30-40 more miles. it is a frequent occurrence in my driving life. I know what the light means to my driving future. I know what it represents from experience. Should I stop and fill up now, or do I drive home 12 miles to fill up at the station by my house? I can fill up where I am right now or in 12 miles. What do I choose to do? Do I fill up now? Do I wait and fill up in the morning? In similar circumstances past, I have made all of the choices. Knowing if I wait for the next morning I might forget to fill up in my haste, and interrupt my day with an empty tank and a call to roadside assistance to bring me a gallon of car nectar. What do I do? Frankly, it does not matter. I do not even pray about it. I don’t ask for God’s wisdom. Because Jesus does not care which choice I make.
This “Jesus does not care thing” started for me decades ago.
Forty years ago, my Christian friend Camille graduated from college. She was a College volunteer leader of High School girls. She had to make a serious life choice. She did not know what to do next. She had narrowed it down to 2 choices. She had a big job offer in Kansas City, or she could go to graduate school. She had prayed and prayed. “What is the right decision?” she asked me. It is good to prayer prior to many decisions. But you might not hear the voice of God. My response was, “I don’t think Jesus cares which one you choose.” “WHAT!?” She was shocked. “What kind of advice is that!?” This was my response as a follow up. “Neither choice is a sin. Both are good, solid choices. I don’t think Jesus cares.” Many times in life, I have to make a choice between several good options. That is what I believe. I do believe He cares how you honor Him, regardless of which you decide to do. I believe God is Sovereign and the choice is mine…. or yours. Feel free to choose what you want to do. By the way, I think Camille just retired from that job after 40 years.
Jesus cares about many things. But, I believe Christians tend to overthink a task. I never had to pray for guidance when I go to the dog park. I do not need Jesus’ guidance to find out whether to play fetch with my boy Tank. Jesus does NOT care if I toss the ball for my dog. My dog, on the other paw, truly does care.
And now for the “big one” given today’s environment. In November you find yourself in the Voting Booth. Before you is a ballot. You have to make a choice. Trump or Biden, Biden or Trump. Or an Independent choice. Back and forth in your mind. You pray, you ask, you make a decision. You vote. You place your ballot in the ballot box. For whom did you vote. I know you care, you have spent your election season yelling at folks about who THEY should vote for, but Jesus DOES NOT care. (You may start screaming at me now.) I don’t believe He cares who I vote for, or who you vote for. He writes no endorsements for any candidate ever. In spite of what the Television ads tell you about their faith and their family. So folks who line up to think Jesus is on your party’s side, well I believe those folks are just wrong. It infuriates me when I see folks post about Christianity and Political parties. Do you think Ramakrishna cares who the candidates are in India? What about Mohammed’s advice to Egyptian voters? Or more Importantly, does Jesus care about the choice of candidates in those countries? Or does Jesus just care about this country’s electoral process?
In the First Century, during the days of Jesus on Earth, the Mediterranean region and the lands to the North, including Israel were a part of the Roman Empire. A Empire ruled by the Caesar or Emperor. During Jesus’s time that Title was held by Augustus and then Tiberius. I know little about Jesus and His interaction with the Roman Government, but I know the Romans had a cause and effect relationship with Jesus.
The Birth of Jesus Christ Luke 2:2
“2 In those days a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered…3 And all went to be registered, each to his own town. 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, from the town of Nazareth, to Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed,[b] who was with child. 6 And while they were there, the time came for her to give birth. 7 And she gave birth to her firstborn son and wrapped him in swaddling cloths and laid him in a manger, because there was no place for them in the inn.”
He was born in Bethlehem because Joseph and Mary had to return home to be counted for the Roman Census.
We know that Jesus had fellowship with Zacchaeus Tax Collector working for Rome.
Zacchaeus the Tax Collector Luke 19:1-6
” Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. 2 A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. 3 He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. 4 So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way. 5 When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” 6 So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.”
And we know that Pontius Pilate, a Roman Governor ordered the Crucifixion of Jesus.
Jesus Before Pilate Mark 15:12-15
12 “What shall I do, then, with the one you call the king of the Jews?” Pilate asked them. 13 “Crucify him!” they shouted 14 “Why? What crime has he committed?” asked Pilate. But they shouted all the louder, “Crucify him!” 15 Wanting to satisfy the crowd, Pilate released Barabbas to them. He had Jesus flogged, and handed him over to be crucified.
There are not many mentions of the Roman influence on the life of Jesus. Looking for Biblical direction in the time of Jesus regarding the Roman government is limited indeed. I believe that if political action were an important part of life His life, there would be a larger record of Jesus addressing what was required of His followers politically to extend the Kingdom of God.
When I go to the Bible to discover the teachings and insights and directives for how to vote, Jesus might have said more. What he said with just a few words reveals much. Jesus does have much to say to me about political and government interaction. So few words, but a complete message. This directive of Jesus regarding the Ruling Government over the land where Jesus taught and worshiped and lived, leads me to believe Jesus did NOT care about government, nor did he care what the government thought of Him. But He understood it. And obeyed it. And actually taught briefly on it. Following is the Jesus directive concerning His council on my political involvement and honoring God. In Mark 12:16-18 Jesus was asked about Paying Taxes to Caesar…”16 So they brought a coin to Jesus, and He asked them, “Whose image is this? And whose inscription?” “Caesar’s,” they answered. 17 Then Jesus told them, “Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s, and to God what is God’s.” And they marveled at Him. 18 Then the Sadducees, who say there is no resurrection, came to Jesus and questioned Him:…”
But Jesus did not appear to be involved with affairs of the state. And in turn He does not care who you vote for. Perhaps I overstep my boundaries, but it infuriates me when Christians point at one party or the other, as if the government might be a Christian voice. I makes me mad just to put this thought on “paper.” I hear the voices. I see the advertisements that say their candidate is a Christian and a family person. Jesus cares about the candidate, He cares about you. He does NOT care about your vote.
But there is much Jesus does care about, I will share about that soon.
My friend Aaron made a comment on my Facebook page yesterday, as I was hammering out my thoughts about Jesus and Politics. This is what I posted.
I got several comment/replies for my post, but one was striking. Aaron’s statement was a brilliant light and revealing. “… Bob. If Jesus is the leader of a nation that he claims to be, is not the use of Christian rhetoric to any other party political dissent?” What a great question. Jesus was called the “King of the Jews.” Jesus spoke always of His Father’s Kingdom. What an incredible insight. Jesus is not a “political” party guy, Jesus is a “Kingdom of God” Guy. His ministry was a Kingdom of God ministry. He did NOT care about the political system that surrounded Him. He made almost NO comments on the Roman Empire. He did speak to a different form of government. He did reside under the Roman laws of where He walked and taught, but He also challenged the laws and direction of the Jewish leaders and the Synagogue. He cared about the work of His Father’s Kingdom. Somehow in the world in which I live, some Americanized political view, and ever more Westernized Christianity, my many friends believe the battle is for the control of this world by the master race of that person’s chosen political party. Oh and by the way, that means by default the opposing party is filled with unknowing imbeciles. I watch both sides accuse the others It makes NO difference which group is in power for the moment. Lord have mercy.
Jesus is also a choice kind of guy. Because His Father is a “choose wisely” kind of God. But just like the menu at the restaurant, not all choices are connected to Sin. Sometimes God directs us on Choices. Sometimes you are warned, that there are good choices and bad choices.
Genesis 2:16-18 — 16 And the LORD God commanded him, “You may eat freely from every tree of the garden, 17 but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil; for in the day that you eat of it, you will surely die.” 18 The LORD God also said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make for him a suitable helper.”
YOU MUST look to God for guidance to make a choice between blessings and curse, life and death. (Deuteronomy 30:19) And that is when God cares deeply, and advises completely.
And there are times that same God speaks to the same folks about upcoming choices and I think HE just says, “Have a good day. today You should name all of the animals. Have a good time.” It is Dealer’s Choice. It is a clean slate. From Ant to Rhinoceros, animals were named, there were no bad choices. “Let’s call that cute little stuffed animal a Koala Bear!” “Hey Adam, Look, it’s a Sloth.” Enjoy the menu. There are no bad choices. Except for the name of the mosquito, which sounds like it would be something fun. They did get “head lice” right, because what else could those things be?
I call these “cheeseburger” choices. Sometimes I am just free to choose. These are NOT Kingdom of God decisions. Like who I vote for, or if I want cheese on my hamburger. These are the same things for me. You are free to feel differently. I know some Christian leaders teach a different message on politics. I know many of my friends actually believe that God is keeping a tally of my cheeseburger choices. I have friends on both sides of the political spectrum who believe they have some kind of insight as to voting and Christianity. But seriously, that would mean that there are actually people choosing to Sin if they vote one way or the other.
I am not certain when the church got tricked into believing that God cares about candidates and their “anointing,” It probably began with Jerry Falwell and the Moral Majority or the Pat Robertson for President thing in the 1980s. Did Pat Robertson get elected President? Did Jesus forget to care? Jesus DOES NOT care who you vote for. Jesus cares about you extending His Kingdom, regardless of who is President of the USA. If He has a Kingdom, which I believe He does, then ultimately He is saying “Vote for Me. Choose Me. Choose the Kingdom of God.” Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s, render unto God, that which is God’s. Your party affiliation in the United States of America has NOTHING to do with your eternity. If you don’t believe in the Kingdom of God, then there is nothing to see here, move along. If the Kingdom of God is a Fairy Tale story for you, I am sorry, you are just wrong. That is your choice to choose “wrong.” God has spoken to you. If you are reading this, He is using me to speak to you. You can choose to believe, you can begin at any moment, like right now. There is no specific start line for all, each begins their Faith at their personal moment. And God responds accordingly.
Thanks for the insight Aaron.
I think the founding fathers understood separation of Church and State. This is a new thought for me, and it is “new” wisdom. A coming alive of the Word that I was ready to hear today. Bible believers seem to forget that Jewish leaders had to conspire with the Roman Government to get Jesus crucified. Jesus was crucified because the Church needed the power of the State. Under the Roman Empire, only Rome had the power to put someone to death. The crucifixion of Jesus is the merging of the church and state. And under the Kingdom of God, only God can anoint a Blood sacrifice for Atonement, for the Salvation of Man and access to His Kingdom.
And why did all of this happen? Why did Jesus come to reveal the Kingdom of God? Why was Jesus a blood sacrifice in the most horrible of death sentences?
Oh yeah, it is because Jesus really does CARE.
For God so loved the World, that He gave His only Begotten Son, that whosoever believes on Him, shall not perish, but have Eternal Life. John 3:16.
Welcome to the Kingdom. Access is actually very easy, even if it takes a lifetime to understand. This is your invitation, should you choose to accept it. There is much to learn. Lao Tzu, the Chinese philosopher, and founder of Taoism, is the author of a familiar quote many of you have heard, and many have used. “The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.”
And so it is with the Christian life. There is a first step. It is a step of Faith. Nothing else. No matter what you think, there is NO other first step. You have been told. The message has been shared. It is, of course, your choice.
And Jesus DOES care.
Romans 10:8-10 The Word Brings Salvation
“…8 But what does it say? “The word is near you; it is in your mouth and in your heart,” that is, the word of faith we are proclaiming: 9 that if you confess with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with your heart you believe and are justified, and with your mouth you confess and are saved.…”