Posts Tagged ‘failure’

Success According to Jesus

April 1, 2008

Was Jesus successful during his time on earth? This may seem an unusual question.  It naturally depends on one’s definition of success is.  In the eyes of the world success could mean :-1.  Financial Wealth

2.  High Status and Recognition in Society

3.  Loving Marriage and children

4.  Ability to enjoy the things in life eg. relaxing holidays,  trips to exotic locations,  lovely restaurants,  sporting or artisitic pursuits.

5.  Feeling of Happiness

6.  Loving friends and family for quality fellowship and support

7.  Beauty and Good Health

There can be other elements that would include success in our modern age.  However these would probably be the main ones  people would look for to guage  if a person is a “success”  in our world today. 

By our worldly standards was Jesus a success? Let’s take a closer look:-

1.  Financial Wealth: he did not seem to possess financial wealth.  His chosen trade was a carpenter which probably would have earned him a modest living able to supply his needs.  During his three years in full time ministry, he  probably received financial support from specific followers.  He also stayed at people’s houses as he travelled and visitied different towns.

2.  High Status and Recognition: Jesus attracted many followers who were searching for spiritual truth.  However he was despised by the  leaders of the Jewish order and eventually condemned by all the governing authorities of the day.  He always seemed to face some form of persecution for his teaching.

3. Marriage and Children: Because God had a special mission for Jesus on this earth he remained single in order to devote his whole life and soul to God’s appointed task.

4. Enjoyment of Life : Since Jesus only had three years in full time ministry, it is unlikely that he took any extensive holiday time to relax.  However he did attend weddings and feasts and probably knew how to enjoy celebrations with friends and family.  John 2

5. Feeling Happy: Jesus would have always had the feeling of peace and oneness with His Heavenly Father since he was sinless and always completely obedient to His Father’s will.  However I don’t know that he was always “happy” in a worldly sense.  After all he knew that his death and crucifixion lay looming ahead of him.  Luke 22:44.  In Isaiah 53:3 it also says ” He was despised and rejected by men,  a man of sorrows and familiar with suffering.  Like one from whom men hid their faces,  he was despised and we esteemed him not”.

6. Loving Friends and Family:  Jesus had a supportive family who helped to raise him in a godly household. He also became very close to the 12 disciples during his life on earth.  He ministered and discipled them so that one day they could spread the gospel message of salvation throughout the biblical world.  However he also experienced the pain of betrayal by one of his friends close to him within this inner circle, namely Judas.

7.  Beauty: In terms of beauty Isaiah 53:2 tells us ” He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,  nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.”  From this passage it would suggest that Jesus may not have been an impressive handsome character by the world’s standards.

At the end of his life  the Jewish leaders of the religious order and all the governing authorities  condemned him to death by crucifixion for speaking the gospel truth.  It would seem that he was losing in the eyes of the world and could have been branded as a failure

However through heavens’ eyes he was accomplishing a magnificent and incredible victory in the spiritual realm.  Evangelical Christians all over the world celebrate the ensuing triumph that was ultimately achieved.

Jesus paid the  penalty for the sins of all mankind in the present ,  past and the future.He rose from the dead, since he was sinless and therefore death could not hold him down forever. Through this act, he enabled a full pardon and forgiveness for all our sins, fellowship with Himself , and eternal salvation for our souls .  To top it all off, it gave us  the promise of eternal life in heavenly paradise when we leave this earth. This gift is offered to all people who wish to actively accept Jesus into their hearts and follow him with their lives.  Due to Jesus selfless life and obedience, he was then elevated to the highest place in heaven to sit at the right hand of God. Romans 8:34.

Therefore we can see that although Jesus did not appear to be successful in a worldly sense, he accomplished a huge victory in the spiritual realm which is a win that will last for eternity.

It also goes to show, that sometimes,  things are not always as they seem.

By Adelle Arwen
Gospel Singer Songwriter & Recording Artist