Walk As He Walked
1 John 2:3-6
"By this we know that we have come to know Jesus: if we keep his commandments. Whoever says “I know him” but does not keep his commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him, but whoever keeps his word, in him truly the love of God is perfected. By this we may know that we are in him: whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked.
My wife Deborah does a lot of walking. Every morning she’s out there pounding the pavement, raising her heart rate, and building muscle tone. She’s been walking the neighborhood long enough that she knows all the other walkers. She knows some of them quite well.
She talks about Carrie who, like Deborah, works in foster care. And Renee, who walks to experience community. Her parents have passed and she lives in their big house alone. Then there’s Carol, who recently lost her husband. She wants Deborah to get a bicycle and ride the neighborhood with her. There’s Wygene, who sings with the local chorus every Christmas. There’s Patsy and her husband Hal—a couple of Church of Christ folks. In fact, Hal is an elder in the church.
Deborah knows the young lady with some mental illness—a kind of autism. You can say hello to her, but she never engages—won’t even look at you. Her dad follows about ten yards behind her making sure she stays safe. Deborah knows all these people… and they all know her.
On some level, that’s part of what it means to walk as Jesus walked. If we will consistently spend time walking with Jesus—watching His walk and hearing His talk—we will get to know Him better. Walk with Him and see what He values and what he doesn’t value. Learn how He feels about all kinds of things, including power, position, politics, and money.
Over the last two thousand years, millions of people have claimed to walk with Jesus. Because after walking with Him a while, they came to see that His walk was worthy of emulation. They wanted to walk as He walked.
Those who walk as Jesus walked become a reflection on Him. And that, dear friends, is the goal. Christians are to reflect Jesus.
John’s church is under attack from false teachers who are ANTI-Christ. They do not love Jesus and they do not care to walk like Jesus. They would rather walk for themselves. They see the Jesus way of walking as so much unneeded pain and suffering, too much serving and not being served. It brings constant ridicule from outsiders. So they preach, “That’s no way to live! Walk like us. We love only ourselves. We get what we want and we will use anyone to get it. We are living the good life!”
John says, “No. That’s not real life. If you walk with the false teachers your final destination is destruction. You are doomed. If you want real life, true life, you will find it only Jesus. Abide in Him! Walk like Him!”
Our culture tells us that real life means party hardy! Shop till you drop. Buy more! Buy bigger! After all, the one who dies with the most toys wins! Culture puts its faith in the premise that looking good, feeling good, and having lots of stuff is what life is all about. And sadly, this lie has wormed its way into the church--John's church then and the church of today.
John says, “Put your faith in Jesus. Abide in Jesus. He IS real life.”
“This is the commandment of God, that we believe in the name of his Son Jesus Christ and love one another, just as he has commanded us. Whoever keeps his commandments abides in God, and God in him. And by this we know that he abides in us, by the Spirit whom he has given us” (1 John 3:23-24).