Many of us want to become more like Jesus. But sometimes, I think we make it more complicated than it actually needs to be. We’re looking for an extensive formula, when really, it’s much more simple than that.
I love this picture of my son wearing his daddy’s shoes.
It’s such a great reminder that our kids will likely become (for better or for worse) like us. They will – quite literally – follow in our footsteps.
Just as it’s true that our children will likely become like us, it’s also true that we will become like those we spend the most time with.
I’ve heard it said that you will become like the 5 people you are around the most.
It’s interesting to me how many of us say we want to be like Jesus but don’t spend very much time with Him.
(And believe me, I’m just as guilty as anyone else!)
The reality is, if we’re not spending time with Jesus and learning about Him – how He lived, how he spoke, how He loved – then we’re going to have a really hard time becoming like Him.
How can we become like someone we’re never around?
How can we mimic the actions of someone we don’t see?
I love that the opposite is also true, though.
The more we are around someone, the more like them we become.
So the more we dig into the Word of God and the more we study the person of Jesus, the more we will become like Him.
Luke 6:40, in the New Life Version, says this, “But everyone who learns well will be like his teacher.”
All this month here at Do Not Depart, we’ve been talking about why sound theology matters. In the introductory post, Ali explained that theology is the study or knowledge of God.
In the past few weeks, we have shared several reasons why sound theology matters: because it helps us identify false teachers and false doctrines, because it helps us know God better, and because it helps us know how to interact with others.
Another reason sound theology matters is because it is through sound theology that we become more like Jesus.
It is through the study of Him that we become like Him.
The formula for becoming like Jesus isn’t as hard as we often make it.
We often think we have to follow a whole bunch of rules: don’t have sex outside of marriage, don’t get drunk, do go to church every Sunday, don’t steal or kill or lust, don’t do this, do this, etc.
But the truth is, the formula for becoming like Jesus is simply this:
Be with Jesus = Become like Jesus
We become like those we around, so when we’re around Jesus, His amazing qualities begin to rub off on us. And before we know it, when people look at us, they start to see more Jesus.
Sound theology matters because the study of Jesus helps us grow more like Him.
There is one thing I want to warn you about, though.
Just having knowledge of God is not enough.
We can know a lot about God without actually knowing Him.
I think that’s what happened to many of the religious leaders while Jesus walked on this earth.
They had a lot of head knowledge about the Scriptures, but they failed to let their knowledge reach their hearts.
In John 5:39-40, Jesus challenged the Jewish leaders about their knowledge of the Scriptures: “You search the Scriptures because you think they give you eternal life. But the Scriptures point to me! Yet you refuse to come to me to receive this life” (NLT).
So this week, spend some time with Jesus. Open your Bible and get to know Him. But don’t do it just to know facts.
Instead, do it to know Him.
Let’s chat: Have you made the “formula for becoming like Jesus” more complicated than necessary? How?