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Please stop saying “Try Jesus”

There’s a saying that’s been going around for many years. It goes like this: “Try Jesus, if you don’t like him, the devil will take you back”. It’s cute. It’s clever. It’s funny. But is it biblical?

Let’s look into God’s word and find out, shall we?

You might recall that Jesus said:

… If anyone wants to become my follower, he must deny himself, take up his cross daily, and follow me.
Luke 9:23 (NET)

It sounds to me like Jesus desires a commitment from us, to follow Him every day, even if we don’t feel like it sometimes. Here’s one is even more convicting.

Jesus said to him, “No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”
Luke 9:62 (NET)

Jesus isn’t interested in people who only have a superficial interest in him. He isn’t interested in people who pretend to follow Him outwardly, often with wrong motives. I had one person tell me that she would become a Christian if I could guarantee that Jesus would give her a grandchild. Of course, I declined to give that guarantee.

Others might pretend to follow Jesus for popularity, or power, or even to make money. Please understand, Jesus doesn’t want a multitude of pretenders who say to Him, Lord, Lord, didn’t we do all kinds of good works in your name, only to tell them, “I never knew you. Away from me you evildoers” (see Matthew 7:21-23).

Jesus is only interested in people who are willing to yield their lives to His lordship. Besides, giving Jesus a try, doesn’t save anyone. I don’t care how many times they’ve said the sinner’s prayer or wept over their sins. Jesus said that unless you are born again, you cannot see the kingdom of God (John 3:3). This only happens when you accept Jesus in your heart (see Romans 10:9).

When Jesus was asked by an expert in the Mosaic law, which commandment in the law is the greatest:

Jesus said to him, “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.”
Matthew 22:37

How can you possibly fulfill the greatest commandment if you treat Jesus as a trial subscription that you can cancel at any time? The Apostle John made it very clear that those who left the faith were never really Christians in the first place. And, by the way, if you’re not really a Christian, you stand condemned before the Lord.

They went out from us, but they did not really belong to us, because if they had belonged to us, they would have remained with us. But they went out from us to demonstrate that all of them do not belong to us.
1 John 2:19 (NET)

They never would have left the faith if they had really believed. When you believe something so deeply that nothing can change your mind… when the threat of pain, or loss of belongings, or death can’t cause you to deny the Lord your God, then you believe the gospel of Jesus Christ in your heart. I once told a friend, who is a casual Christian (so to speak) that I would never deny Jesus, even if it cost me my life. I have never seen anyone’s eyes get so big. But, my friends, this is the kind of commitment that the Lord requires of us.

If you’re saying “Try Jesus, if you don’t like him, the devil will take you back” to people, please stop. It really isn’t cute, or funny, once you’ve really thought about it from a biblical point of view.

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I first professed my belief in Jesus as the Son of God and accepted Him as my Savior more than 40 years ago. Since that day, I’ve never doubted that Jesus is who He claims to be. However, that belief didn’t keep me from living my life on my own terms for several years, which resulted in repeating the same sins over and over. In 2013, I became determined to make Jesus the Lord of my life. It was then that the Holy Spirit gave me an insatiable appetite for God’s word. As I turned more and more of my life over to Jesus and cooperated with the Holy Spirit, He has helped me break free of the sins that once enslaved me. Since then, I’ve been strongly compelled to share God’s word and to warn others that we need to get ready because Jesus is coming soon.

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