A Few Thoughts About Jesus
It’s Easter, which I always think of as the actual Jesus memorial day. As much as spring is also a time of lots of Pagan celebrations, Easter is more tied to Passover than Christ’s birth is to December (what did Marybeth tell me - that he was born in April?). Anyway, Easter can be tricky for Unitarians because traditionally, we don’t believe in the divinity of Christ (contemporary UUs can pretty much design their own belief package - but the lack of a Trinity goes way back in the teachings).
I believe that Jesus was the son of God as we are all the sons and daughters of God. And, to me, that makes what Jesus did even more remarkable. The son of a carpenter, he took on the role of charismatic religious reformer, traveling the country and speaking out against those he felt were abusing their power. People followed him and, most importantly, they listened to him - repeating his stories until they became lore. He knew he was poking the sleeping bear, but he also knew it had to be done and he stayed strong even as the soldiers came to lead him to his Crucifixion.
What must that have been like? Did he wake up every day thinking it could be his last? Was he forced to keep his distance from personal relationships because he knew his time was limited and he wanted to make the most of what he had? There were many prophets in Israel at the time of Jesus, but his teachings and story myths are the ones that survived. What was it about Jesus that made him stand out from all of the others? How did people know he was special?
I know some people will say, “He was the Christ,” but unless angels whispered to everyone he came into contact with, I think there had to be more. Others will ask me, “Why this obsession with Jesus?” It’s been more than 2000 years. That’s a long time for anyone to hold the public’s attention. And, he had a lot of great things to say about tolerance and treating other people well. He lived an intentional life and succeeded in having his message outlive him. We should all be so lucky. Happy Easter!