What You Do For God vs What God Did For You (Bus Accident Analogy)
I think serving God is amazing. He’s so kind, that my heart and affections are always toward Him. But have you ever noticed that what God really wants is for us to serve other humans?
Sometimes people over obsess over what THEY are doing for God. As if God were expecting to be paid back.
The Bible says “God is not served by human hands, as if He needed anything” – Acts 17:25
People whose main message is about what THEY do for God are spiritually unhealthy, and frankly, arrogant. It also leads people away from Jesus.
The gospel isn’t AT ALL about what we do for God. It’s about what He did for us. He’s God.
The gospel is what leads people to Jesus. The “what God did for me” message focuses on Jesus, whereas the “what I did for God” places the emphasis on “self”.
Bus Accident Analogy of God
Imagine, there you are, standing in the middle of the road. Unbeknownst to you, a bus is coming around the corner at 70 mph. Imagine you are about 3 seconds from dying, and out of nowhere the guy named ‘Bob’ jumps out and saves you. Bob literally pushes you out of the way and dies in your place.
Sure, it would be natural to want to do nice things to honor ‘Bob’, but is it honoring him if all we do is talk about what we’re doing for Bob? If you wanted an audience to honor Bob, which message would draw them to him? A message of all the things you are doing for Bob, or a message of what Bob did for you?
You see, no one cares about what you’re doing for Bob, or for Jesus. The appeal is what they did for us.
Now religion will tell say ‘oh, so you’re saying doing nice stuff for Bob’s family isn’t okay? And I’d say, sure, I think that’s great, but if I’m doing it for Bob, well I don’t need to boast about it in every conversation. I’d rather talk about what Bob did for me.
Serving God is part of the natural Christian life. Boasting about them is not. Guilting others to serve is not. We honor Jesus when we talk about Him giving His life for ours. That’s the message that broken and lost hearts so desperately want to hear.
So, if you want to honor Jesus, and I know most people do, let’s use this holiday season to talk about Jesus, and what He has done for us. You’ll find people are a lot more interested in what He did for you than they are about what you’re doing for God.
Author: Mike Cynar
Mike Cynar was raised in a church setting where he frequently noticed that many attendees would eventually drift away. The church labeled these individuals as ‘back sliders’ or ‘fake Christians’ just looking for ‘fire insurance’. However, Mike realized the issue was rarely with these individuals but instead with the church’s message itself. The teachings heavily emphasized behavior improvement and one’s flaws, with only a fleeting mention of one’s identity in Christ. It felt as though every sermon was tailored to the church of Corinth, who as we know or committing sins that even unbelievers don’t partake in. This trend was noticeable not just in one denomination, but across Baptist, Catholic, Pentecostal, and many other churches. Upon understanding the true essence of the gospel – that our righteousness comes from Jesus’ actions, not our own – Mike was inspired to liberate believers from lifeless sermons and reconnect them with the genuine teachings of Jesus. He believes that one can nurture a vibrant and growing bond with Jesus, unhindered by rigid religious practices. And thus, “Jesus Without Religion” was born.
It turns out that it is grace that leads to repentance. And if our heart is to get others to walk in the Spirit and live a godly life, then the best approach is not a beat down sermon, but rather to remind other that it is only when we understand our true identity in Christ that we will live it out. Yes, it’s true, if you’re convinced that God thinks you’re a dirty sinner, you will ultimately continue a lifestyle that mirrors that view, but if you truly believe that even on your worst day, you are called holy, sanctified, justified, and will be presented blameless in the end, well, it turns out this is the secret to living out on the outside what has been worked in to the inside.