For some reason, while I was reading at Starbucks, this question came to mind.
If Jesus walked on this earth today, would we recognize him? Would we give him a better welcoming than those 2000 or so years ago?
And, I concluded that, sadly, I believe that history would repeat himself. (Though I don’t know if we’d go as far as giving him capital punishment).
He wouldn’t be invited to speak at many events or churches.
Today, it seems like if you have a book published, or a pastor of a mega church, you’re asked to speak at various churches or conferences or events.
Or maybe if you had great connections.
But Jesus wouldn’t have any of that. He wouldn’t have a book to publish. If he did, it would probably be a biography written way after he was gone.
I don’t see Jesus as a pastor to one single church. And, somehow, if he was, I don’t think his church would be a mega church. The question, “who then can be saved?” (Mt. 19:25) comes to mind…
And I don’t see Jesus as having many powerful connections with other church leaders.
He would probably do things that would upset the liberals and the conservatives.
People would be looking so hard at who he is, what he is, what he represents, what he does wrong, what he does right, how we agree with him, how we disagree with him, what he wears, what he doesn’t wear, what he preaches, what he doesn’t preaches, who he hangs out with, who he doesn’t hang out with, what his political stance may or may not be… so much so, that we probably will miss what his message is.
We’d be so busy dissecting him, that we’d miss the big picture.
He may be dismissed by some religious leaders because his tactics may not be conventional. He may be viewed in a way some leaders view the emergent churches. Others may view him as not being post-modern enough. Some might think he’s too political, others not political enough.
He’ll probably stir the feelings of jealousy from church leaders.
“I can’t believe people are following him! We have a nice church building with great programs and opportunities. We are a good seeker church AND we provide means for people to grow in their faith!”
“Who is he to speak like that?”
Ah, maybe instead of capital punishment, he’d just be assassinated by someone who thinks that his act of violence would do the world a favor.
Like how Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated.
Or like how bombing abortion clinic is appropriate to some extremist.
I asked a youth years ago, if Jesus was here today, would we recognize him? And she replied, of course! Things are different now. We’d know that he is good and we’d believe everything he would say.
I wish it were so. But I don’t think Jesus would be recognized by the masses. Just like 2000 years ago, I think only a few would truly recognize the Son of God.