YES! Jesus, the mighty Prince of heaven walked with us mere mortals on this very real earth! So many eons have passed, so much humanity has come and gone, the fact that He actually lived a human life among us tends to slip away into fantasy land, and we read His story as if it were just a chronicle of His holy life. Oh, not so, not so. His Father sent Him on a mission, and not just an ordinary mission. It was a last-chance mission to give us mortals a real life, last glimpse of His Son Jesus, the Way, the Truth and the Life, living among us and leading us back home. When He comes again, it will be Judgment Day of how well we have responded to His generous Illustration while He lived among us. For He did live a very real life among us, tempted as we are (yet without sin), tortured, despised, denigrated, loved and honored by very few. But His life was oh, so real—and what is so dangerous is that we tend to forget the human side of Jesus, the pure agony of it. The cold and lonely mountain side, the bitter betrayal, and finally the ugliest event of history: His bleeding, aching body hanging on a cross. He had been sent by His Father to offer hope and salvation to a sinful and gainsaying world, and this was our answer.
Jesus is so very real, then and now. He lived among us, loved us, offered us hope. He was a gracious wedding guest, he held little children in His arms and told us that “of such is the kingdom of heaven.” He walked through the cornfield with His disciples where hunger caused them to pluck and eat. He dared to touch the leper as He cleansed him. He chased the thieves out of the temple. He wept at the death of His friend Lazarus. He called short little Zaccheus down out of the tree and went to dine with him. He hated hypocrisy and called it. No pale, withdrawn esthetic was Jesus. He was the Son of God, but He was also the Son of Man. He was one of us, so we could be inspired to be like Him. Oh, how He loved us, every dirty, stinking, diseased, rebellious stripe of us! But you say, “This was long ago and far away.” No, no! This is now and forevermore, until God closes the books and says with His Son, “It is finished.”