The Bible says God exists in three persons. Each person has a different role in our relationship with God. But preachers talk mostly about Jesus. In fact, they use His name ambiguously to represent any or all of the members of the Trinity. They say He makes us, loves us, and saves us. They want people to meet Him, follow Him, and pray to Him. They say He wants to live in us and change us from the inside out. They say He is with us and has a plan for our lives. As one famous preacher says, “It’s all about Jesus.”
A Harmful Trend
It is good to preach about Jesus. It is only as we preach salvation by grace through faith in Him that people will come to know God and be saved. But when we preach about Him too much, we neglect the other members of the Trinity. The Bible tells us what role each member has in our relationship with God. We must be careful to explain how we relate to each of them and not use “Jesus” as a vague label for the entire Godhead.
How To Not Preach About Jesus Too Much
We avoid preaching about Jesus too much not by talking about Him less but by talking about the other members of the Trinity more. Jesus has a role in our relationship with God and we need to be clear about what it is. But God the Father and the Holy Spirit also have roles in our relationship with God, and we need to clear about what those are too. Our relationship with God is:
- With God the Father. He makes us and predestines us even before that (Eph. 1:4-5). He loves us in our sin and makes provision for our eternal life (John 3:16; Rom. 5:8). He reconciles us to Himself (2 Cor. 5:18) and we have access to Him (Eph. 2:18). He meets our needs (Matt. 6:33; Phil. 4:19) and we pray to Him (Matt. 6:9; Phil. 4:6).
- Through Jesus. He is the one and only way to the Father (John 14:6). He is the “one mediator between God and men” (1 Tim. 2:5). He sits at the right hand of the Father interceding for us (Heb. 7:25) and defending us (1 John 2:1). In fact, the verses quoted in the previous paragraph show that all God the Father does for us is through or in Jesus.
- By the Holy Spirit. By Him, God lives in us (1 John 3:24; 4:13) and we are marked as God’s possession (Eph. 1:13-14). By Him, we address God as our Father (Gal. 4:6; Rom. 8:15). By Him, we are empowered to overcome sinful desires (Gal. 5:16) and serve the church (1 Cor. 12:7).
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One thought on ““Overemphasizing Jesus”: What Happens When You Preach About Jesus Too Much”
I think you are right that the name “Jesus” is often incorrectly used, “as a vague label for the entire Godhead.” I think the best correction for this is to use Yahweh as a label for the entire Godhead. The word “God” works, but it fails to differentiate which God we are talking about. By using Yahweh we limit our reference to “God” as the God of the Bible and the God of the Christians and Jews, as opposed to Allah (the god of Islam) or Zeus (the Greek god).