Jesus Wasn't Politically Correct--Why are YOU?
The image we have of Jesus today bears little resemblance to the Jesus of the Gospels.
Tradition has accrued multiple layers upon layers of let us call them "enhancements" to the figure of Christ, highlighting some things here, playing other things down there, and generally using him as a form of malleable clay to be shaped in any form that one group or another require in their agenda.
A number of things which occurred to me which illustrate how Jesus symbolized the rebellious spirit which stood against the old traditional behaviors of his society of his world in which he found himself. Yes he was indeed a rebel and it is voluminously documented in the Gospels.
Jesus chose not scholars not holy men not rabbis not teachers not intelligentsia to become his disciples but rather common men for the most part men who worked with their hands man who like the tax collector were not chosen from the A- class list.
Everyone is familiar with the attitude Christ had towards Scribes and Pharisees.(Indeed, it was a Scribe--named Judas--who betrayed him.)
The Scribes and Pharisees were the ultimate members of the politically correct club of Palestine's ruling class and as such to voice any public disagreement or indeed to point them out specifically as illustrations of what holy men should not be was a frequent remark made by Jesus. Jesus healed on the sabbath to the scorn of the Pharisees.
He upheld the rights of sinners, surely a politically incorrect stance. He ate at the house of prostitutes and he accused men who would, (according to the Mosaic law), stone adulterous women of being adulterers themselves.
So what are we to make of this statement by Jesus that we should render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's?
In my view this statement was made by Christ to refer to those things which Rome rightfully espoused but the politically correct overseers were not just Romans so much as they were the Jews, the Pharisees,the Sadducee-- those who set up the moral codes.
It was with this group that Christ found most of his disagreements criticism and attacks. We all know about the day Christ entered the temple and in the most politically incorrect of actions possible a broke up smashed and trashed the money lenders stalls.
These men were part and parcel of the establishment of the time fully participant in the running of the temple. This action was the crowning act of Christ's politically- incorrect mission among men..
But yet an even more potent statement of the Lord's ministry occurred when he stood before the Jewish court-- the Sanhedrin-- and caused the high priest great angst --enough to tear his own garment upon hearing the words he considered so heretical proceeding from the lips of this Jesus of Nazareth.
Could Jesus get more politically incorrect?
And yet are we to think are we to think that we in our modern Judeo-Christian society that Christ came only to hear our prayers and comfort us and be our refuge in times of grief and sadness?
Where do we find that Christ in the Gospels? He may perform such an office here and there--after all the Lord's prayer is itself a comforting instruction to call upon God and indeed some of the parables and stories that he expounded were on the face of it easy to understand and accept within the parameters of the political or moral atmosphere of the ruling classes.
However if we look deep into them many of these parables and stories they contain a germ of revolutionary thought or moral advice which turns traditional politically correct advice on its head. A prodigal son who is welcomed back with open arms, after spending all of his inheritance.
Even the parable of the lilies of the field to my ears is a call to not only cease from worry but cease from work
"the lilies of the field neither toil nor spin yet your heavenly father feeds them and raise them in marvelous colors" etc. if Jesus himself supported himself and his followers with donations (not work per se) it would come as no surprise that this again would run counter to the Jewish ethic of hard work.
We have lost much of what Christ of the Gospels was in favor of enhancements writes ceremonies and Sunday school curriculum.
Christ spoke his mind always.
He may have turned the other cheek but that too is politically incorrect in a society of such brutality and violence where a man presented his views with a sword pointed at your throat not cheek turned in openness. Everywhere we look at this man we see reversals, topsy-turvy logic, surprises and revelations all of which brought him increasingly under the eye of the Sanhedrin who themselves were the staunchly politically correct priests of Palestine.
So the question now is: who are the High Priests,the Pharisees,the Roman oppressors in our world? They don't have the same names but they do have the same purposes--to make us all overly-sensitive, so that we are ever creating havens for the things we should not overlook but do--BECAUSE they are protected under the politically-correct umbrella.
Do you speak up when you see injustice, and evil, or do you refrain for fear of harming the feelings of others? Why?
Are you being politically correct, or do you just lack the faith not to be?
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