Home » What Does a Relationship With Jesus Look Like?    


What Does a Relationship With Jesus Look Like? — 32 Comments

  1. This was so encouraging! I love to read when new believers take that next step in keeping the Sabbath! 🙂

  2. What does a relationship with Jesus look like? People showing love (keeping the commandments) not primarily to go to Heaven, or to get a pat on the head from Jesus when He returns, but simply to show love for its own sake (see Luke 17:7-10). This is why salvation can never be by works. Would we want to live in a universe where men don't cheat on their wives because they want to walk streets of gold? Or someone tells you "the only reason I haven't killed you is because I want to see Jesus some day." No one should need an incentive not to steal from people or spread lies about them. This is why Christ is so strict about commandment keeping, not because it earns us anything but because...seriously does anyone really need an explanation for why they shouldn't cheat on their wife? Love for its own sake is the hallmark of a relationship with Jesus.

    • That is true spiritual maturity.

      I'm praying myself to reach that stage--where I do what is right because I agree with God that it is right and because I have that desire myself for it.

    • What incentive does God have to love us? Or to grant us grace? I have or own nothing that God wants other than my heart. We should love in the same way. No agenda or motivating incentives. Just love.

    • Good point. Most adult relationships are at a level above mere obedience. Jesus calls us friends (Jn 15:15). One does not disrespect his/her friends but does those things that show love. However, it may take time for baby Christians to grow to that level of maturity hence obedience may be a helpful concept initially.

  3. Hi William,

    Thanks for sharing two enjoyable stories-one about children and the other about a woman who wanted to work on Sabbath, and how you handled it with her, explaining that she had a choice.

    I really liked the ending you shared, " It did my heart good to see faith growing her relationship beyond just reading the Bible to actually doing what it said."

    Sabbath keeping sometimes involves choices that are not always easy to make, no matter how long we've been keeping the Sabbath. Right now I am faced with an up coming volunteer position and the volunteers are all expected to work Sabbath afternoon to clean up after lunch and after a week-long health program. So I've stated my preference of helping out a little after the meal but not all afternoon. And I hope and pray for understanding.

      • God is good and I am granted understanding. Some of the people will know I am a SDA now and maybe that is a good thing.
        Funny thing is, I've been an SDA for 34 years and I still get nervous about keeping it in secular places. I need more of God's peace. Thanks for the prayers and good wishes.

    • Is Sabbath and Sabbath Rest under the new covenant the same as under the old covenant? I think Christ gave early indication in His ministry that there might be a difference. When His disciples were accused of sabbath-breaking in the corn field in Mat.12:1-8, Jesus gave examples of men “breaking the law” of sabbath and the temple and they remained justified. . He is indicating that the ordinary regular rules for sabbath observance give way before the requirements of the temple. He declared that “something greater than the temple is here”-- referring to Himself; and that He was “Lord of the sabbath”.

      The first sabbath Israel observed (Ex.16) brought rest but really its main purpose was to demonstrate to them the glory and power of God. There was no manna on the ground to be collected but they would eat meals preserved against rotting by the power of God. In Deut.5:15 God told Israel why he gave them the command to keep the sabbath --- it was a memorial of their redemption or deliverance from slavery in Egypt. It was a “sign ... that you may know that I am the Lord who sanctifies you”(Ex.31:12). This was given to “Israel according to the flesh” with Moses as their deliverer. This was physical rest from physical slavery, work, labor, and toil. God physically set them apart from all the nations but they remained slaves of sin.

      The scripture compares Christ and Moses and it declares Christ greater than Moses.(Heb.3:1-6). Law came through Moses, Grace and Truth came through Christ. Moses delivered Israel according to the flesh from slavery. Christ has come to deliver His people from slavery too. In John 8:31-47 Christ says ....”you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” The Jews replied they had never been enslaved how would they become free. Jesus replied, “Truly, truly everyone who sins is a slave of sin. The slave does not remain in the house forever; the son remains forever. So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed”. Christ says it another way: “All things have been handed over to Me by my Father.... Come unto me all who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest..... and you will find rest for your souls for my yoke is easy and my burden is light”.(Mat.11:27-30). Now Israel of the flesh under the old covenant observed the sabbath and its rest for 24 hours and went back to their work, labor, and toil.

      What’s the work, labor, and toil the “Israel of God” delivered from ---- the Works of the Flesh. see Mat.15:18-20; Gal.5:19,20; 1Cor.3:3; Eph.5:3; Col.3:5,6; James 3:14,15. Christ calls us to Sabbath Rest from these; that is the Gospel; it is what the New Covenant is about. “All things have been placed in Christ”. All the promises made in the old covenant and manifested in types and symbols including Sabbath is to be realized in and through Christ. He is the Way, Truth and Life. “And because of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us Wisdom from God, Righteousness and Sanctification and Redemption”(1Cor1:30).

      Since all things have been placed in Christ, Sabbath Rest is found only in Christ. Now do we go back to “our works” if this Sabbath Rest is the sabbath of the old covenant that lasts 24 hours?. Heb.3&4 speak of this rest as the rest that remains for the people of God. All the promises of the 7th day, the 7th week, the 7th year, the 7 seventy, the Jubilee year, the acceptable year of the Lord, that is Deliverance and Redemption from slavery -Sabbatic references are realized in Christ. We have Spiritual rest. This is the rest that God rested at creation. God is Spirit and they that worship Him must worship in Spirit and Truth. Physical rest does not accomplish that. Physical rest of the old covenant is type and symbol.

      The new covenant is the ministry of the Spirit into sabbath rest. The believers are not in the flesh they are in the Spirit as sons of God(Rom.8:9). “God sent forth His Son..... to redeem those who were under law, so that we might receive adoption as sons. Because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts.... So you are no longer a slave, but a son, and if a son, then an heir through God”.(Gal 4:4-7). There is no more time of days, weeks, months, and years(Gal 4:9-11). The sons of God don’t speak their own words; whatever they eat or drink or whatever they do they do all to the glory of God; when they work, they work as unto God and not to men. The sabbath is Today.

      • That was interesting and if a person is keeping Sabbath rest thinking it will somehow earn them salvation - you are right on! But that really isn't what Sabbath-keeping is about - it is our "full day date" with Jesus! It is about building our relationship with Him! He has asked us to spend that time with a Him and as anyone who has loved an earthly loved one know you do what your loved has asked!! And yes, we do need to spend time with a Him each day but He has also told us six days we should labor.

  4. There must be some significance in the Bible 'every slave and free men' having to run to hide from Christ. Naturally we sympathise with slaves, could there be something they may be doing which would make them decide to run and hide? But maybe there is no need to look that far, and read this verse with the five dimensions of Bible reading , ref from Pastor Ivor Myers, starting with what this verse say to me and my situation. What comes to me mostly is failure to be courageous, cowardice and failure to stand up for what is right. We find that we are enslaved in our addictive habits, etc. And we end up feeling we do not have choices to make. I hope we will all be encouraged, myself included, to take a bold step for God when we have rare opportunities to do that. Courage steps in when it is not easy.

    • Lesego, the significance of the passage in Revelation 6:15 is that sinners will be comprised of every class. This is only to say "all who are lost". None will be exempt from the terror of Jesus' glory when He appears. Only by His grace will the redeemed among men stand in that day. (Notice the question the wicked ask in verse 17) Revelation 7 is the answer to that question. Very important for us to understand this answer, for it is the result of having a close walk with God in our daily life, like Enoch. This is how God's people will appear at that time, which is close at hand.

  5. My prayer is that members of that SDA Church did more than just said, "Amen" when the new Christian gave their testimony; that they sowed a financial seed and blessed her. The Bible also speaks about that as well.

    It is all well and good to tell someone "what they should do", but another thing for us as Christians to sacrifice for the blessing of someone else, especially a New Believer.

  6. Relationship with Jesus is this; "No one who lives in Him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen Him or known Him. No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s SEED remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God." (1John 3:6,9).

    Having a relationship with Jesus means; "I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me." (Galatians 2:20).

    Christ Himself when talking to His disciples, He made this most solemn proclamations; “Anyone who loves me will obey my teaching. My Father will love them, and we will come to them and make our home with them." (John 14:2). A life in Christ Jesus is a life where; "if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live. For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God. The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship." (Romans 8:13-15).

    When we have a relationship with Jesus Christ, every desire of our hearts only desires the life of Christ. Born again and free from any accusation, we stand before God just as if we have never sinned; "This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear." (1John 4:17,18).

    I like sister Whites demonstrations; "If you give your life to Christ and accept Him as your personal Saviour, then sinful as your life may have been; through Him you are accounted righteousness. Christ character in place of your character, you stand before God just as if you have never sinned.

  7. The Beatitudes give a wonderful description of what a relationship with our Lord and Savior will look like from start to finish.(Matt 5:3-12)

    I also see it described in Psalm 1:1-3.

    Peter also gives a clear description in 2 Peter 1:5-7.

    What others will see is the result of such a relationship as described in Psalm 15, 1 Cor 13, and many other passages of scripture, which will be our witness of the character of Jesus and our Father in heaven.

    We can only give the Everlasting Gospel if we have received it ourselves.

  8. God bless you all--However, a REAL relationship with Christ does not develop when one "quickly presented" with consequences (which will happen regardless). Jesus said "I, if I be lifted up, will draw all men unto Me". Share what Christ is doing in YOUR LIFE and how YOU PERSONALLY have been changed and transformed. Share how your witness has positively impacted the community, your family, friends, and the FRUIT that God has allowed you to see. Share how you are BLESSING financially others and making a change in their lives. Witness for real....

    • Yes Sarah, doctrine alone is not the witness. Jesus said YOU will be my witness. The word actually means "record". Yes, a living record of the life of Jesus, who had God's law written on His heart. "...that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" is the witness, just like Jesus' life.

      Only possible after the Holy Spirit takes over our life.

      We need to keep in mind that a record can only play back what has been engraved upon it. This is the result of the relationship.

      • Robert, this whole thing to me is almost a catch 22 situation. While it is true that our lives should be consistently in line with Christ rather than hypocritical we must keep in mind one glaring fact: "The LORD looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one" (Ps. 14:2-3 NKJV) "But we are all like an unclean thing, And all our righteousnesses are like filthy rags" (Isa. 64:6 NKJV) "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" (Rom. 3:23 NKJV). For, "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us" (1 Jn. 1:8 NKJV). And there lies the problem. As Paul said in Rom 7 we seek to do good but find a real hurdle in doing it.

        When Jesus said, "You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven" (Matt. 5:14-16 NKJV) He was not telling us that we should be the focus. It is only when Jesus is lifted up before the world that the real light can shine (Jn 12:32).

        When we do as Hezekiah did and focus attention to ourselves rather than God we set ourselves up for trouble. We are not the Rock, the Great Physician, the vine, or THE light - Jesus is. In my opinion we are to constantly point to Him and Him only (Ex 20:3).

        • Tyler, don't confuse the statements regarding sinners before they are saved. We don't remain clothed in filthy rags unless we have refused the covenant of peace that removed the filthy rags and replaces them with the spotless robe of Jesus' righteousness. We don't remain in the pit (Ps 40:1) if we allow God to save us.

          There is no "catch-22" if we receive the "power of God unto salvation".(Rom 1:16) If God cannot transform lives, the whole "gospel" is a joke on us. But He has proven He can and offers us His strength, which brings Peace; meaning no more enmity with God. (Isa 27:5) The results of the Gospel is lives transformed by faith. God will give us strength and make our way perfect.(Ps 18:32, 2 Tim 3:17, etc)

          The truly saved will never focus on their selves, but will uplift Jesus among men as His witnesses.

          How does this work? Romans 12:1,2

  9. The story of the new member was very inspiring but that was a direct miracle from God - we must be honest with new members that exercise of faith may not be that quickly rewarded! There will be some who will do the same and be fired or if in the US where there is supposed to be religious liberty have hours cut to minimal but not "fired". As Sarah Sulton said we need to be ready to financially encourage the new member who exercises faith but has a different outcome - that of God rewarding their faith through their new family!

    • This thoughtful insight is often overlooked when witnessing to a new convert. It is important to share with them, that their spiritual journey won't be easy at times, however God will not forsake them. Your point is well made, that members may need to assist financially on a temporary basis if needed.

  10. I like the statement : I don't believe in religion, I believe in a relationship with the LORD.

    When learning how to share the Gospel, I came to the conclusion we must show the people how much they need Jesus using the many examples in the Word like, lost/found, blind/see, guilty/pardoned, etc.

    But I have discovered this approach is putting the cart before the horse as well as counter productive as it tends to focus on the negative i.e. being lost.

    What I have realized is that it is more important and productive to focus on the character of the LORD, His love for us, His worldview, His wisdom and His divine power. As Jesus said: if I am lifted up I will draw all men to Me. When we and others are fascinated, attracted, intrigued, satisfied, fulfilled by the love and character of the LORD then we will want to be in a relationship with the LORD.

    Because of this deep relationship with the LORD we will desire to be like Him and the Word gives us the good news that the LORD meets us where we are and he saves and transforms us into His image.

    • Shirley, what do you do with James 1:27 if one doesn't believe in "religion"?

      How do you define religion? Isn't being yoked with Jesus the true definition of religion according to scripture?

      I realize you might be referring to simply being a member of a large organization that dwells on theory while never fully receiving it in the life. This is often called religion, but it does not fit the true definition does it?

      Also, you are not convinced that sharing the teachings of Jesus parables and healings are adequate, when it was His way of sharing the Gospel wherever He went. Isn't this how the character of God is revealed in a sinful world? How does the return of the prodigal and his father's response focus on the negative? How negative is the forgiveness and healing of the paralytic?

      Who were the most effective witnesses during the time of Jesus' ministry? Wasn't it the transformed lives? The demoniacs cleansed of the legion convinced the community that had sent Jesus away to welcome Him gladly at His return. The great sanctifying transformation in the lives of those two men showed their fellow countrymen the character of this Healer and His Father. What do we read in Romans 12:2 as being the optimal witness of God's good, acceptable and perfect will for sinners? What did Jesus teach in Matthew 5:16?

      Without being transformed in our lives, our theories will have no power to convince. Ask yourself, who would be the most effective in leading other "lepers" to seek healing from Jesus, the well-educated leper who delivers such wonderful sermons, or the most wretched of lepers who has been fully healed of leprosy himself? What would he need to say in addition to the obvious transformation?

      God has chosen to use those saved from sin to reach other sinners. Our sanctification will bring convicting power to our words, as we live "sober, righteous and Godly after having previously been ungodly and full of worldly lust. (Titus 2:11,12)

      • Hi Robert,

        It seems I didn't make myself clear.
        Jesus' parables, healings and the transformed lives reveal the character of God and are the best things to share.

        What is not the best way is to start off by telling people how bad they are and that they need to change. Rather we should tell people how wonderful Jesus is and as they learn to love Him and grow closer to Him, then to share the good news that no matter what happened n their past He can heal them.

        • I agree that our effort is not to condemn sinners, but to uplift the Savior of sinners. THIS alone will draw them to Him. It is this drawing to Him that reveals our corruption to ourselves, and lead us on the path of being saved by His grace. The beatitudes define this path, which must being with beholding the Lamb of God in His purity, dying for US. We then can see our need and like Peter sinking in the waves, turn and cry for help.

  11. Hi Robert,
    Yes, I was thinking in terms of institutionalized religion, like these texts from Paul in Acts 26:5 and James 1:26.

    Act_26:5 who knew me from the first, if they would testify, that according to the strictest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.
    Jas_1:26 If anyone thinks to be religious among you, yet does not bridle his tongue, but deceives his own heart, this one's religion is vain.

    So what do I do with James 1:27 - I change the statement, it should say I believe in pure religion but I don't believe in vain religion, pure religion is a relationship with the LORD and vain religion is a form of godliness that denies the power of God.
    Jas_1:27 Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit orphans and widows in their afflictions, and to keep oneself unspotted from the world.

    • On those terms, I would agree with your original statement as well Shirley. Religion must be pure and undefiled, not some creed we just follow with others without really experiencing for ourselves God's saving grace. Transformed lives will be a powerful testimony. Lazarus raised was a living testimony of the power of Jesus to "save to the uttermost". The lame walking, the blind seeing, etc, all these invite others to find Life in the Life-Giver.

      Our lives can be the same witness if our religion is pure, and our sure connection to the Vine will always bring forth fruit.

      • The question here is not whether there is a transformation but how that transformation is implemented. Let me put a sharp point on this whole thing. Assuming that you have the Holy Spirit within you as a real Christian are you now sinless in that you no longer sin and therefore have no need to confess anything to God? Or let me ask you this, when Paul wrote to the Philippian church and said, "Not that I have already attained, or am already perfected; but I press on, that I may lay hold of that for which Christ Jesus has also laid hold of me" (Phil. 3:12 NKJV) was he describing his experience before conversion or after it?

        You seem to reference Zech 3 implicitly but I would suggest that that is the action of justification not sanctification of which you seem to be discussing otherwise why would the Lord say to him after the change of clothing, "If you will walk in My ways, And if you will keep My command, Then . . . (Zech. 3:7 NKJV). It is basically the same admonition that Jesus gave to the woman caught in adultry, "Neither do I condemn you; go and sin no more" (Jn. 8:11 NKJ) first justification then the call to sanctification. To me justification is instantaneous in that it cleanses us from past sins where sanctification can be both instantaneous and spread over an entire lifetime depending on what we are talking about. To me it is sanctification that does the actual changing, not justification which is only a declaration. According to scripture we are to grow up into Christ where we are considered babes in the truth at the time of baptism but are expected to eventually mature into a matured adult believer. To me that is sanctification, something that takes time to complete.

        • Tyler, how do you understand the following verses of scripture?
          Mark 4:26-29
          Zeph 3:12,13
          Phil 2:5-8
          Jude 24
          Psalm 18:32
          Revelation 7:3,13-15; 14:1-5

          What is God looking for in His people as the last events close in like stormy clouds?
          The other question should be; What has delayed the appearing of the Lord with His eternal reward?

          While I could offer many "quotes", I believe the scriptures above tell us all we need to understand as God's professed people. What our relationship with our Lord should look like is: Him. The highest form of worship is to imitate the One we worship.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

HTML tags allowed in your comment: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>