I perceive God in Jesus, the Christ. God chooses to show Godself as Father and Holy Spirit, but today I take the time to write about the apprehension of God in Jesus, the Christ, and make no excuses for the practice.
Jesus is the Ultimate example of the Moral Exemplar. His life is The Good Life, and I love Him. Therefore, the active emotional agents called regret and resentment are not required of me.
Yes, I agree that Christianity is a shame-based religion established in the tragic death of its Founder. His death, however, was a tragedy, not a catastrophe. A tragedy has seed, root, stem and fruit. A catastrophe can be a flood, fire, a cog that slips, a lever that will not pull. A tragedy comes from somewhere, may not be immediate in occurrence, but has a lesson to teach in and of itself. The lessons of a tragedy are usually found in the fate of its characters, so the fate of Jesus, His intended passion and complete death is the place where idealism refuses to give way to despair, no matter the painful circumstance.
Thus, His life is the answer to any person of conscience who asks the question, “What is a good life?”
Jesus was moved inwardly by grotesque inequality, conspicuous waste, gross exploitation and unnecessary poverty. He saw all these impish iniquities all around Him and condemned each one in time and forecast each one would outlive His era. Jesus would be called a prophet, if His ministry had not so exceeded the preaching ministry of all the prophets combined. Jesus proved to be…
- the conscience of a people across generations and social lines;
- the voice of the mute;
- the advocate of oppressed persons in His day;
- the One who stood when others ran away;
- the One who delivered a prophetic word against institutionalized sin.
Any one of those attributes would have made Him special. The presence of all five in one person made Him the Ultimate Good. His existence teaches us this immutable fact about a good life; that is, a good life has to come out of a good heart. Jesus, as presented to us, has a good heart. We can judge Jesus the way we would judge anyone if we are persons who believe goodness is to be measured by one’s belief in the dignity of all persons. A society becomes a society in the first place because it believes in the existence of an ideal of free persons. Jesus’s tragic death is once, for all, to set all persons free.
There is no secret to a good life, if, by secret we imply something hidden. A real life, a good life, a real and good life, is lived out in front of us by Jesus, the Christ. Jesus demonstrates a good life requires one to have the right loyalties held in the proper scale of values. Jesus is good, but not silly, or weak or stupid. Jesus is a dissenter, but not a dissenter only. Jesus is the kind of dissenter who makes us reappraise what we think in light of a supreme concern for truth.
The life of Jesus is good because He both establishes the faith and keeps it. In His life we find the foundation of proper race relations, of real human dignity, of loving companionship. Jesus does not have a comfortable place to live while He is here, but He could sleep comfortably wherever He laid His head