Monday, May 16, 2005

land of make believe

I am convinced that most church people would have hated Jesus. Yes it's true, we might be fanatics of morality and religion - but that could be said of the Pharisees, and lest we forget, they were labeled a "brood of vipers" - ouch! More than anything, I think many are adherents to legalism - to a list of rules that are easy to follow, because they require no relationship - only mindless obedience. When I read the Gospels, I am confronted with a Jesus that I didn't learn about in sunday school. Believe it or not, Jesus and Mr. Rogers didn't really have a lot in common (well, you know, except for the cardigan and Keds). Jesus was not proper, He didn't wear a suit, His best friends were poor and dirty and He hung out with drunks and whores. Needless to say, the possession of any one of those characteristics would be grounds for dismissal in many churches today. Yet, all the while we value pride, wealth, success and self-righteousness...all things that Jesus failed at pretty dern miserably. It seems that we have this thing upside down.

"I believe it to be a great mistake to present Christianity as something charming and popular with no offense in it.... We cannot blink at the fact that gentle Jesus meek and mild was so stiff in his opinions and so inflammatory in his language that he was thrown out of church, stoned, hunted from place to place, and finally gibbeted as a firebrand and a public danger. Whatever his peace was, it was not the peace of an amiable indifference." Dorothy Sayers
posted by Christie