“That guy.” The very words bring to mind for most of us the “that guy” in our lives. You know–“that guy” who is always doing something inappropriate. “That guy” who says the wrong thing. “That guy” who drives everyone crazy. “That guy” who, when we see him coming, makes us wish we hadn’t rescheduled that root canal appointment.
There was a time when it wasn’t a bad thing to be “that guy.” “That guy” was the most popular guy. “That guy” was the one you could count on to help out. “That guy” was the one with character and honor and valor and all things good. “That guy” was the one you wanted to be doing your root canal for you!
As I read through the Bible I can’t help but think that Jesus was the ultimate “that guy.” In the gospels, He’s both sides of the the “that guy” coin to two very different groups of people, and He knew it. Just this morning I was reading John’s account of Jesus being arrested. Along comes a detachment of soldiers and some officials carrying torches, lanterns and weapons, when Jesus steps up and asks them, “Who is it you want?”
“Jesus of Nazarath,” is their reply.
“I’m that guy,” Jesus replies. OK, so he really said, “I AM He,” but He could have said it another way if He had wanted. There it is. He owns it. He’s “that guy”. He’s the guy. He’s their guy. He says it, and an amazing thing happens. The Bible tells us,
they drew back and feel to the ground
Woah! Definately not the response any average guy would ever get. Jesus doesn’t seem to make a big deal about their response. He just asks them again, “Who is it you want?”
And again they reply, “Jesus of Nazareth.”
And Jesus says, “I told you, I’m “that guy”. If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” (The disciples happened to be with him at that time.) Peter does his own “that guy” thing with his, “Hey this is getting out of control, I better grab a sword and attack the high priest’s servant, chopping off his ear” move.
Jesus, of course, tells Peter to put the sword away and puts the ear back on adding to his list of “that guy” stats, ear putter back onner!!!
The soldiers arrested Jesus. They bound Him. They brought Him before the authorities. The same authorities that saw Him as their “that guy.” “That guy” who the people love and are following. That guy” who is hanging out with the “that guys” of their time. “That guy” who is doing miracles. “That guy” who claims to be God. “That guy” who teaches like nobody’s business. “That guy” who is shaking things up. “That guy” who everytime they see Him drives them crazy with anger, jealousy, indignance, frustration, and rage. “That guy” who they decided they needed to get rid of. “That guy” they were willing to frame, lie about, to trump up charges for, and “that guy” they were willing to crucify.
Jesus was “that guy” to the religous leaders of His day. But he was also the other “that guy” to many of the people of His day as well. Because He was “that guy” who turned water into wine, “that guy” who raised a dead man from a tomb, “that guy” who fed thousands, “that guy” who told them things about themselves no one should have known. He was “that guy” who loved them regardless of their past, and “that guy” who was showing them a whole new way to live for their futures. He was “that guy” who although crucified, overcame death, was raised to life, and was found to be unstoppable no matter how hard they tried to stop him, and He is still “that guy” today.
Don’t you just love it when someone asks you how your life was so radically changed from who you once were to who you are today? Don’t you love even more that you can point to Jesus and say with all your heart, “Who me? I’m changed because of “that guy,” and “that guy” can change your life, too.” Because “that guy” is Jesus, King of Kings, Lord of Lords, Savior, Messiah, Redeemer and Friend. If you don’t know Him yet, you can just ask “this girl,” and I would be honored to introduce you.