Monday, July 02, 2007

Tagged: Five Things About Jesus

Dan tagged me to come up with a list of five things that I "dig" about Jesus. This was an interesting challenge, particularly when there are so many things that I could put here. Let's give it a shot:

1. Jesus picked imperfect people as his disciples, knowing full well they would never be perfect. I often think about how, in today's world, executives who are looking to hire the very best personnel for their companies take the cream of the crop -- folks with outstanding and relevant experience, a proven track record of success, and near-Type A personalities. That certainly wasn't the case with Jesus: the disciples were tax collectors and fishermen, among other professions -- certainly not ones you would pick to help bring about the Kingdom of God on Earth; the tax collectors and fishermen that were picked were either unpopular with their fellow townspeople (Matthew) or not very good at what they did (Peter coming back with empty nets time and again); and they certainly weren't Type As -- if they were, they certainly wouldn't have fallen asleep in Gethsemane.

2. Jesus didn't give up on the people he selected and demonstrated strong loyalty and patience with them until the very end, no matter how ridiculous they acted. He truly had what we refer to as the patience of a saint; if Jesus were to change out his staff every time one of them said or did something that came out of left field, his entire ministry would have been spent filling personnel vacancies.

3. Jesus was a deep thinker who carefully considered his responses to every situation, and he often said more in his short responses than most folks do in long, eloquent speeches. There was no rush to judgement, and he never gave an answer that didn't challenge people on many, many levels. A perfect example to me is the near-stoning of the woman caught in the act of adultery; he sat quietly and wrote in the sand while the crowd questioned him on how the woman should be punished, and then gave one of the most powerful answers in the New Testament -- all in just 12 words: "Let he among you who is without sin cast the first stone."

4. Jesus was a man who made friends easily, and who never forgot them. You only need to look at his obvious devotion to Lazarus and his sisters Mary and Martha to see the strong devotion he had to his friends.

5. Jesus has inspired billions of people over the centuries, and did it all despite a ministry that lasted (by many estimates) barely three years. I can't think of anyone else who, in such a short period of time, made such a positive, powerful, and eternal impact on the world. Many have tried -- none have succeeded.

I'm going to break the rule and not tag anyone specific on this one, but I would love to see your "lists of five."


Dan said...

Thanks for playing along.

Your list is very good.

#3 I'm especially partial to. It sort of reminded me of the Gettysburg Address. Though Jesus' succinctness even put Honest Abe to shame.

Sandie said...

I am going to give this some thought tonight and post tomorrow. I really like your top five!

rdl said...

very interesting answers.

trace said...

wow - what a comprehensive list! I've just posted mine, check it out. Hope all is well with you.

Kansas Bob said...

I love this one Matt:

"Jesus didn't give up on the people he selected "

Inspires me to do the same.

ipanema said...

that's a beautiful list!