November 05, 2011

Nazareth! ...?

John 1:43-51

“Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?”
John 1:46


When Christians worship in a big multiethnic gathering, they often say, “This must be a taste of what heaven is like.” Richly diverse styles of music and expressions of praise weave a beautiful tapestry. It’s a foretaste of the new creation in which all tribes and people groups of the world will gather together (see Revelation 7:9).

When Jesus came into this world, he entered a specific place and culture. But he also came to be the Savior and Lord of people in every culture and place. He demonstrated how the good news comes to us right where we are. And that’s part of the good news of Jesus—it can be expressed in every language, and it speaks into every culture.

Christ’s followers do not have to speak the same language, dress the same way, or lift up one culture above another. We honor Christ as we take the best of every culture and place it in service to our Lord. In fact, the gospel is so rich that it takes all our cultures, languages, music, and art to fully express it.

Jesus entered deeply into the lives of a ragtag bunch of Jewish Galileans. He shared in their language, music, humor, and lifestyle. He also took what they knew and built on it to build his kingdom.

Jesus loves your neighborhood too. Do you?

Lord, help us to appreciate where you’ve placed us. Help us to value others and not judge them for being different from us. Help us to love as you love. Amen.

About the author — Allen & Lynn Likkel

Revs. Allen and Lynn Likkel have worked in communities across North America for many years—planting churches, nurturing them along, and developing new church leaders. A minister in the Christian Reformed Church, Allen served with Christian Reformed Home Missions for nearly 40 years, and Lynn, also ordained as a minister of the Word, has served to build leaders and new congregations. In November 2010, Allen entered retirement, and the Likkels moved to Washington, their native state. They have four adult children.

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