Advancing the Conversation of Jesus
GOT A MINUTE?
In 2016, a few leaders in the Vatican were exposed to my podcast, ‘THE JESUS MINUTE’, and my last book, SIMPLY ENOUGH: Jesus Plus Nothing. When they shared with the Pope that we had a lot in common about our teachings and emphasis on Jesus, Pope Francis extended a personal invitation to me to gather a group of other non-Catholic leaders who are followers of Jesus plus nothing, for a private audience with the Pope in his apartment in the Vatican. He requested a variety of people he wanted to be included in our group…leadership of the President’s National Prayer Breakfast, US Senators, a College President, the largest pastor in the US, businessmen and women, African businessmen, and a couple of Israeli Jews who are following Jesus. The purpose of the meeting was to interact with one another about the person of Jesus.
To me, the most thrilling of all was what Pope Francis shared about his three most important priorities. This blew our minds! Pope Francis made it clear to the papal conclave who nominated him and voted him in as the Pope the three most primary things he wanted: (1) He wants a poor Church to reach the poor. (2) He believes they don’t need more Catholics. (3) He believes the most important doctrine or teaching of the Church is the teaching of Jesus.
Jesus said it better and more powerfully, when sharing with his disciples, asking this question: “Who do you say that I am?”Simon Peter answered, “You arehe Christ,the Son ofthe living God.”And Jesus said to him,”Blessed are you,Simon, becauseflesh and blood did not revealthisto you, but My Father who is in heaven.(Matthew 16:13-17)
Jesus makes it clear that he is the Messiah, the Son of the living God, yet he’s not a doctrine that anyone can teach to another, so that they are transformed. This kind of conversion of the heart can only take place through a personal work of God, Himself. Our job is to introduce Jesus; God does the conversion!