What does it mean when Christians say “Come as you are?” Many of the unbelievers have the wrong notion thinking that they have to change their habits and lifestyle etc. before they can come to Jesus and ask Him for forgiveness. They think, well I am an alcoholic or a drug user, I am angry or I have too many issues. They think that Jesus will not receive them in their current condition and that they need to clean up their act before asking Jesus for help and forgiveness. Jesus does not see it that way. He had dinner with sinners. He sought out the sinners, just look at the disciples, they were sinners just like everybody else. He chose them in their current sinful condition.
Look at the woman who was caught in the act of adultery or the Samaritan woman at the well who had 5 husbands and was living now with a her boyfriend. He did not condemn them, He ministered and reached out to them in their current sinful condition. There are many more examples of Jesus reaching out to the lost, something the religious leaders of the time did not. The religious leaders looked on the outside and not at the heart. They judged purely on appearance, and instead of welcoming them, they cast them out.
Many Churches today cast out people simply by their appearance which is a shame and not very “Christ-like”. In the late 60’s and early 70’s many of the Hippies came to faith in Christ and they came to a little country church in Santa Ana Ca. They were long-haired “dirty looking” people and not what some might expect coming to church on a Sunday morning. It was small church, and the Pastor was Chuck Smith. The small congregation at the time was upset with Pastor Chuck because they had just installed new carpeting and these long-haired hippies were messing up the carpet. Pastor Chuck assured the complaining members of the Church that he would take care of it. They sensed victory and thought that Pastor Chuck Smith would just cast them out.
Little did they know, when they saw Pastor Chuck ripping out the carpet and welcomed the hippies with open arms. They came by the thousands and were called “Jesus people” or “Jesus Freaks”. The church known as Calvary Chapel has grown into a fellowship of over 2000 churches world-wide. Because of one man who did not look upon the outside, many of these broken people who had believed the lie that peace and happiness can be found in sex, drugs and Rock’n Roll, found true peace, happiness and salvation in Jesus Christ. He transformed a generation. Jesus never told anybody, “clean up your act and then come back to me”, He received them just as the were. Jesus is the One that transforms lives, He changes people. There are millions of testimonies around the world of transformed lives. Drug addicts, alcoholics, broken people, you name it, they all have a testimony and story to tell about how Jesus changed them when they surrendered their lives to Him.
That’s what we need to remember when witnessing to unbelievers, no matter what their condition is, no matter what they have done, no matter how grave the sin, Jesus wants to forgive them and save them from a life of sin that leads into destruction and eternal damnation. Jesus wants them to “Come as they are”.
“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. “For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”Mat 11:28-30
10 thoughts on “Come as you are”
Thank you my friend. God looks at the heart not what someone wears, just as Jesus said: “you are like white washed tombs”. Nice and freshly painted over on the outside, but full of filth inside. Thanks for your kind words. Freddy.
Fantastic Post!! So refreshing to hear someone else preaching this way. It gets a little lonely sometimes when you are preaching come as you are and other Pastors/Churches are condemning you for it. Thanks for sharing!!
What a joy to find someone else who tkhnis this way.
Always the best content from these prdoiguois writers.
Thanks J.R.I love Pastor Chuck, he has changed many life’s through Jesus and simply teaching the word simply as all Calvary Chapel’s do. Many blessings to you, Freddy.
I lived in Anaheim in the 70s and remember well hearing about Chuck Smith and all his Jesus freaks. I wasn’t a believer at the time, but there was a huge billboard on the 5 freeway just south of Anaheim—a life-sized Jesus knocking a door, and the Rev. 3:20 passage that reads: Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. God was really moving down in that area back then.
Thank you for stressing this issue so clearly about coming just as you are.
Thank you Ruben, many blessings to you.
Very well said. I hope many non-believers (and believers) read this. God bless you.
Thank you very much. Be blessed.
yes.. very true.
The prostitutes, tax collectors, adulterer, the person with leprosy
The person with NO Faith, the person with Great Faith
The unrighteous, the lawless, The sinners
They all came to Jesus and Experienced God love and was transformed
The pharisees, who were “righteous”, who kept the law
were not able to experience the fullness of Jesus
They killed Jesus
I love this post.. grace and peace