When it comes to partying, I think Christians get a bad rap. If you think the Bible doesn’t like a good party, then make sure you read this post all the way to the end, and decide for yourself. Jesus made a declaration that may not seem like it has to do with parties, but I’m saying it does. Change my mind:
“I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples. (John 15:5-8, NIV)
A Connection not a Curse
Jesus told his disciples that they were connected to him like branches to a vine, and that they should remain in him, abiding in a constant connection in order to receive sustenance and bear fruit. I used to think that such an arrangement would result in a somber kind of life, just meditating on Jesus all day or doing devotionals and such. A party would be out-of-place. The first impression many have about Christianity is that if we going to hang out with Christ 24/7, we are pretty much doomed to head straight to the monastery.
And if we were honest we’d admit that Christians probably aren’t the group the world thinks of inviting first when they decide they want to party… Especially a “hold my beer and watch THIS” kind of party, where epic tales come from epic fails. But I would contend that Jesus liked to party, and that his parties had epic stories told about them, and long-lasting legends with different outcomes than your average bacchanalia.
Would You Invite Him to YOUR Party?
Consider these ACTUAL descriptions of Jesus: “On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding party“. (John 2:1-2). “While Jesus was having dinner at Matthew’s house, many tax collectors and sinners came and ate with him and his disciples.” (Matthew 9:10). [Jesus said] “The Son of Man came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Here is a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.’” (Luke 7:34) Apparently Jesus and his crew were just the kind of guys people would WANT to roll up on their social gatherings (and I’m talking sinners here, not Sunday school teachers).
Sadly, that’s probably not what the prostitutes and sinners would say today about most Christians. I wonder what has changed… Jesus went to parties. He was criticized for it! HE HAD FUN. So. Should. We. Come on, ya’ll, being a Christian is AWESOME! Being connected to Jesus is a sustaining, spiritual nutrition-delivering pathway to life and growth. Jesus says that if we remain in him we will bear “much fruit”. His party doesn’t end with a hangover, it ends with a new beginning! His analogy of fruit signifies new life and new possibilities. You may be unimpressed with fruit as the big party payoff, but it works on several levels.
Tell me—what could be better on a hot day in July than biting into a sweet, succulent peach or cutting open a ripe, delicious watermelon? The appetite-satisfying succulence of fruit may not sound like a wild party, but go walking all day in an arid desert and give it a try.
Fruit is also a vehicle for new life! A piece of fruit is both the carrier of and the sustenance for the next generation of fruit. If your activity bears fruit, you are creating a multi-generational legacy that will enrich not only your own life but those of others as well.
Jesus goes on to say that our fruitfulness is something that glorifies the Father! Do you ever stop and think of yourself as an example of God’s GLORY? You ARE! God has inspired men to dance, to write music, to have visions, and to experience awe–all things we like to do at a good party. So, if you want to have a great party, take some of God’s glory along with you. According to Jesus, that’s what his disciples are. That’s what you are. If Jesus gave a party, then Robert Earl Keen would be RIGHT: the party would never end! So celebrate! Be glorious! Party!
The Never-Ending Party
Some folks think that Jesus is a bunch of do’s and don’ts,
A list of things you cannot do–mostly can’ts and won’ts…
They say they’d rather party than spend all their time in prayer,
And yeah they went to church but it was pretty boring there…
Well let me tell you this: my Jesus hung out with the sinners,
And losers (his disciples) later turned out to be winners.
My Jesus (yes I know I said these words redundantly)
Said that he came so we could live our lives abundantly!
His followers went to parties, got invited to events;
They saw him spreading love and joy most everywhere he went.
So if you want to party, follow Jesus and his friends,
Where the road goes on forever and the party never ends.
To buy my latest book, Real People, Real Christmas: Thirty-one Days Discovering the Hidden Treasures of the Christmas Story, go here: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1729034918/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1
For Slaying Giants: Thirty Days with David, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Slaying-Giants-Thirty-Devotions-Ordinary/dp/172568327X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1535814431&sr=8-1&keywords=Slaying+Giants%3A+Thirty+Days+With+David
To buy my book, Beggar’s Bread, go here: https://www.amazon.com/Beggars-Bread-Devotions-Ordinary-Guy/dp/1535457392/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1473336800&sr=8-1&keywords=Beggar%27s+Bread