From the Naked Christian BLOG. . . . . interesting but I have to think about this for a while. . .
7 Surprising Reasons Jesus Was Not A Great Man
Jesus was not a great man. Read the Gospels, read what others wrote about Him. He did not want fanboys or screaming teenage girls chasing after him in a concert. If He walked the earth today I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t have found Him on the cover of success magazines or celebrity rags showing off on the red carpet his latest $20,000 outfit.
When He lived with us, Jesus did not try to set himself apart from the rest of humanity and rise above the din of the masses. He didn’t focus on self-promotion, tweeting He was the great musician of all time or being successful in any generation’s definition of the term.
1. Jesus was not a great man; he was fully a man
Jesus was fully a man, and yet He was the best of us. He was fully a man, in everything that it truly meant and means to be human. Fully involved in the complexities of His world, the duties and responsibilities of being a man to His Heavenly Father, his family, his friends, his disciples, his community, the government, his region—the world.
Weeping for the lost and the broken, crying out against injustice, speaking truth, loving and caring, doing something about the hurt in the world, even to the point of death, death upon a cross. None of this was below him or not worthy of His time and attention while He was busing trying to be successful and great. He was fully, without reservation, a man, unabashedly involved in everything that it means.
2. Jesus was not a great man; he never sought greatness
Jesus was not a great man, so He calls us to walk away from greatness and walk in His footsteps instead. Because who doesn’t hear the siren call of success? The beckon of the crowds, the allure of the 3 seconds of fame, the desire to be recognized, honored, known. How many likes can we get, followers, tweets, or reblogs? Why do we take so many selfies?
Greatness calls all of us to set ourselves apart from the crowds, distinguish ourselves, set powerful goals that will lift us up from the humdrum of everyone else. To be anything, anything else than simply a man, a woman, a human with all of the duties and responsibilities to our Heavenly Father, family, friends, church, community, government, region—our world that entails.
3. Jesus was not a great man; he did mundane work
But in doing all that it requires to be great, are we not setting ourselves apart, trying to be something more? Who has time for the poor and the needy or with the tasks no one wants to do, like cleaning the toilets or sweeping the floors? I’m too busy trying to be important or noticed.
Who has time day in and day out to sit with the kids, take them to school, pick them up, have dinner with the family, help with homework, actually listen to your spouse, your friends, your family—I’m too busy for all of that.
Or I won’t be content with what I have or the paycheck I have; not that wanting to provide for our families well is a problem, but it becomes an obsession to be more, earn more, show what I can really do, more and more. Who has time to be kind, tender-hearted and understanding when I’m busy being important, if even in my own eyes.
In this pursuit of greatness, of I am better than, or I know better than, are we not making ourselves higher than others, trying to stand out and in doing that be great? Let us not fool ourselves, the allure of greatness is not only on celebrity magazines but in our little corner of the world, community, a circle of friends and even church.
4. Jesus was not a great man; he was a man of faith
We all want to set ourselves apart and be great even in our small ways.That is loftier than others. Which means greater than Jesus. greater than God.
But has not God taken what is great in this world and shown it to be foolishness?
Because what else does all greatness have in common? A pointless and fruitless end. What else is it? It is dust, that returns to earth where it came from and soon forgotten in a heartbeat or a blink of an eye. To be great does not take faith in God, but faith in ourselves. Confidence in ourselves is merely blowing in the wind.
But to live a life that is not great takes faith, not in ourselves, but in God. Faith that God takes the ordinary, mundane, duties and responsibilities of being a man or woman in this time and place done in His name and love and consecrate them. He makes them holy and precious in His sight, and they become part of what lasts forever.
5. Jesus was not a great man; he was humble
From scheduling a meeting to cleaning a toilet, feeding the needy to having a position of responsibility, doing homework with the kids to teaching Sunday School, letting others take the lead to leading with humility, and all that comes around and in-between, that is part of not a great life but a human life, living unreservedly in life’s duties, problems, successes and failures, experiences and perplexities is throwing ourselves completely into the arms of God. (Bonhoeffer)
A life that takes seriously not what the greatness of the world takes seriously but what God does. A life that stops taking ourselves so seriously and finally actually takes God seriously.
6. Jesus was a Savior and not a great person
In doing this, we find ourselves at the foot of the cross of Jesus Christ, not a great man but fully a man being exactly what it means to be a human fully. In such a place, God becomes exactly who he is-God. We’ll take seriously the life, hurt and need of this world as we fully live within it and start doing something about it. Even to the point of death on a cross.
This is not greatness, but it is the very salvation of the world that will remain when all fame has turned to dust. That is faith and what it means to be a man, a woman; indeed to be Christian.
7. Jesus relinquished his greatness by becoming human
As we walk into our everyday lives to imitate Jesus Christ, not in His greatness because He was not, but in His humanity, because He was fully all of what that means.
To imitate those who have and continue in faith to imitate Christ in their everyday lives. To follow their example and learn from them as they learned from Jesus. In that struggle, not the futile struggle to be great but the real struggle to relinquish all of our greatness and in doing be like Jesus. When asked what we want to do with our lives, what our goals are, how will we make our mark in this world? For us to learn to say, I am a man, a woman, a Christian.
There is nothing great about that but there is nothing worth more.