I find it very interesting how people view Jesus today. I am not a bible scholar and cannot quote more than just a few very common scripture verses, but is being able to quote chapter and verse from the Holy Bible really that important? Knowing what the Bible says is important. Living by Scripture, especially by the New Testament things taught by Jesus and his Apostles are important, but I find a lot of people who are so quote-crazy they don’t really seem to know much about what they are quoting.
For instance, Jesus is portrayed in most churches that I know of, and by every Christian I know as pious, benevolent, quiet, and soft spoken. I don’t see him that way at all, at least not all the time. As a matter of fact I think of Jesus as quite forceful, and a pain in the butt to the bureaucracy of his time; and to the “progressives” who now control our nation. I see a side of Jesus that is often more like a drill sergeant in the Army.
The drill sergeants, and instructors I had throughout my military training were very good at their job. They knew what they were teaching inside and out, and were very adamant about following the rules. They were stern but as calm as could be until one of us stepped out of line. They didn’t kill us for it, but made sure we got back in line and learned from our misstep. They were teaching us to survive war. I bet if I could sit there and actually watch Jesus I would see many times when he was like a drill sergeant; well-intentioned, stern, no-nonsense and fair. He was teaching us to survive sin.
One scene every liberal and quasi-Christian likes to go to is the woman about to be stoned for adultery and Jesus says “he who is without sin cast the first stone”. Everyone is real good at quoting that part to intimidate a Christian who is standing up for their beliefs. And, Christians often use that as an excuse to cower, but I rarely hear the part quoted when He turns to the woman and says “go and sin no more”. I don’t know which book, chapter, or verse it is but I do know the story. People in general like to point to this episode as Jesus accepting the activities of this story, and giving the Joel Osteen fake smile while He makes everyone feel good about themselves. I have always been taught that Jesus was so mild mannered and passive, yet he took a stick/club and drove the money changers out of the Temple in a fit of rage. I find it very easy to believe Jesus was much sterner in the rock tossing scene than most would have us believe.
Jesus took on the Roman Empire and their puppet lackeys ruling the land of Israel. That isn’t my idea of the Joel Osteen, smiley faced, passive looking, man Jesus is portrayed to be. I see Him as compassionate for those truly in need but at the same time having the ability to get on someone’s case mighty hard when necessary. I don’t see Jesus handing out Obama phones to deadbeats. What was it He said about those who don’t work, meaning those who refuse to work????? I think of Jesus as a hard-nosed but fair and compassionate leader. He seemed to be quite the outspoken young man when he was found in the Temple after Joseph and Mary left Bethlehem without Him.
He didn’t have any problem making the Pharisees and Sadducees look like village idiots as they tried to trap Him into saying something they could use against Him. He certainly didn’t seem to mind “hurting their feelings”. And again, He didn’t have any inclination to shy away from violence and rage in the money changer incident. Not quite as timid as I have always been taught!!!!! And Jesus wasn’t exactly pleased when He came out of the Garden of Gethsemane and found his apostles sleeping. Did He give them the Joel Osteen smile and softly ask them in a whiny voice why they couldn’t stay awake for a few hours, or did He scold them? Again, I wasn’t there but from instances I have read in the life of Jesus I tend to think he was more like a drill sergeant “quite displeased” with the actions of his “trainee” followers.
He wasn’t the military leader the Jews of the day were looking for so many refused to accept His kingdom and follow Him, but then He allows all of us freedom of choice. I wonder how the conversation really went when Satan took Jesus to the mountain top to tempt Him. Was Jesus as passive and dry as the text makes him sound? I think of Him as defiant, even dismissive, in a matter-of-fact sort of way at Satan’s blatant attempt at bribery. Not arrogant but confident, not passive but bold.
Am I right or wrong about Jesus and His demeanor? I don’t really know because I wasn’t there. But from everything I read, His words and the words of His early followers, I see Jesus as a stern but loving example for us to follow. Pandering to the “progressives” and their evil ways is not what Jesus would have us do. He didn’t pander. He said “hate the sin but love the sinner”.
Phil Robertson showed this in the magazine interview that has the GLAAD panties in such a wad. He was matter-of-fact. Phil stated what the Bible says, but also said that if people wanted to live their life that way it was their choice. Phil said that he would disagree and live his life as he sees fit, and allow them the same option. As I mentioned in a previous article, Moslems don’t have that same benevolent attitude towards homosexuals. Telling someone that standing out in the middle of a highway during the rush hour isn’t a good idea (Christians) isn’t the same as running over them with a car to save them from traffic (Moslems).
Jesus didn’t cut sinners any slack, but He gave them an option for something better. I happen to agree that His way is best but it isn’t my responsibility to force everyone to live that way, and I won’t ever do that. My responsibility, and that of every other Christian, is to state the Word of God, the Holy Bible, as it is written without forcing compliance; and doing my best to live as such. Moslems force compliance under the penalty of death for those not so compliant. Christians never call for death to those we disagree with. We call for repentance, not forced compliance.
I continually hear Christians, and often from other Christians, belittled as “intolerant”. Does anyone believe Jesus was really all that tolerant? If everything in the Holy Bible, especially the New Testament, is the guide to live by, how “tolerant” would Jesus really be if He were here today? Would Jesus jump up and down and applaud GLAAD, or would He scold them and tell them they are sinners????? I do believe He would allow them the choice to make their decisions as they wish while telling them scripture says they will not enter into the Gates of Heaven.
Abortion is another subject that causes quite a stir when it is pointed out to be murder by Christians. “Progressives” once again get their panties in a bunch because Christians are “trying to impose their values on others”. That isn’t true either. Christians merely say that according to Scripture abortion is murder. It goes against the passage that says “before you were in your mother’s womb I knew you”. That removes the “blob of tissue” excuse from play in my mind, and that of other Christians. If a woman wants an abortion it is between her, her doctor, and God; but don’t demand that abortion be the law of the land, don’t demand that I approve of it, and don’t demand that I pay for it. That isn’t giving me the same freedom of choice that the pro-abortion crowd likes to crow about so much.
I don’t care how someone lives their life and don’t presume to have the authority to decide that for them, but I do have the authority and the responsibility to share my faith with them and to point out what is very clearly stated in the Bible. The commission given to me by Jesus Christ is to enlighten people with the Word, not beat them into submission with it. At the same time pandering to avoid hurting their feelings or “offending” them isn’t what I see Jesus expecting me to do either.
Would Jesus expect me to ignore what He said is wrong so as to avoid “offending” someone or would he expect me to stand up for what I profess to believe and speak loud and clear as He did 2,000 years ago? Passive, go along to get along, Christians are not what I believe Jesus is looking for. All through the Bible the Israelites had to fight battle after battle. God was with them but they still had to go out and fight the battle. Christians are no different, at least according to the words of Jesus.
I submit this in the name of the Most Holy Trinity, in faith, with the responsibility given to me by Almighty God to honor His work and not let it die from neglect.
January 6, 2014