A narrow perspective on who Christ is could lead us to the idea that Jesus would never say anything mean or make anyone feel bad. It could also make others claim He is a jerk or an alien, as we saw in Chapter 1. People have perpetuated these ideas by how they talk about Jesus over coffee or through social media. Jesus is “memed” a thousand times supporting Republicans or Democrats, Gays or Straights, Blacks, Whites, Browns, etc.; each group of people wants to show that Jesus is on their side by using something He said to prove whatever point they want to make. Jesus is also used by those wishing to mock those who follow Him.
All of this grievously misunderstands what God was doing in Christ. To use Jesus to make your point about whatever current socio-political debate is happening is to claim to know Him in a way that is exclusive to you and according to you. But, Jesus isn’t there for us to win arguments. He isn’t at our disposal for the mic drop moment. In fact, He refuses to be placed in any category we have for Him.
Jesus showed this every time the Disciples or others tried to pigeonhole Him. Are you going to be a king? Can we sit at your side? We miss out when we do this type of narrow classification. We miss who He truly is and what that means, and how that impacts how we live. If you believe Jesus is like Santa, you will live a certain way. If you believe in the West Boro Baptist Jesus, you will live a certain way, and the world will look at Him in that certain way, because of you.
We don’t talk about one aspect of Jesus much, and if we do, it is only in specific instances or closed circles. But, I believe we need to talk about it openly and freely. The reality is that Jesus was judgmental. Jesus was critical of people. Jesus said things that made people hurt and angry. Are you sure you want this guy on your side in whatever ‘war’ you are waging on the internet? He would likely condemn you just as quick as He would condemn anyone else! If you remember, He wasn’t overly fond of hypocrites.
Social media and the internet didn’t exist in the First Century, I know. But if it did, it would be interesting to see what Jesus would post, “like,” follow, share or write about. Lord knows, Twitter accounts have the opportunity to inflame the world! If Jesus took to Twitter to make a case for some of the things that were important to Him it would be fascinating! His Twitter feed would run wild with followers, re-Tweets and Twitter wars. People are so brave on the internet or social media, imagine the things they would say!
To paint a complete picture of Jesus, I have taken the liberty of giving Him a Twitter account. Is it a stretch? Maybe. But I want the force of what Jesus said to have an impact on ears inclined to media that didn’t exist 2000 years ago. So, what would He Tweet? I decided, since we have these other versions of who Jesus was and is, I would bring to bear a much different Jesus than normal.
It is selective on purpose, and, be sure to note, my commentary is filled with sarcasm. The Tweets have been taken from the Gospel of Matthew. Here, Jesus is found laying waste to people with his tongue and pointing out their character defects. Matthew records Jesus calling people names and pronouncing judgment on others on a consistent basis. This is not the Jesus most people want to be with, or the Jesus that is fondly remembered. Maybe it’s good He didn’t have a Twitter account. He was savage. #Judgmentaljesus.
Get ready for a healthy dose of sarcasm.
if you call people bad names, you are going to hell. #youareatotalmoron
21 “ You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, ‘ You shall not murder, and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.’ 22 But I tell you that any- one who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’ is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell. Matthew 5.21-22
Clearly, Jesus didn’t know people. I mean real people. If He did, He would have never said if you call people fools, you are in danger of the fire of Hell. Doesn’t He know that people are idiots, and there is no such place as Hell? What’s with this crazy talk?
I know what it is–He didn’t have a Facebook account during the recent Presidential election. If He did, Jesus would know there are fools. Loads of them. And they are not afraid to go online with what they think.
I don’t get it, Jesus. What’s the big deal with telling the truth, anyway? Some people need to hear they are fools, don’t they? What is going on here? And doesn’t Jesus know Hell is only a metaphor? If Hell doesn’t exist, there can’t be any danger, and if there is no danger, then we can say whatever we want, and Jesus was wrong. Jesus, you’re being foolish.
Praise for Not My Jesus
“Bob flips our understanding of Jesus upside down in this courageous book … no reader will remain unchanged upon consuming this content.”
—Kary Oberbrunner, author of Your Secret Name
“This is one of the most relevant books I’ve read in the last few years. It kicks off by illustrating how we try to make God (aka Jesus) in OUR image instead accepting the fact that we are made in HIS image … When we do this, we short circuit what God is trying to do in our lives. Perhaps the most challenging implication for me was that Jesus calls me to love people id much rather be judging. Ouch. But the author also gives us a Biblical way to get back on track.”
“This book is incredible! I laughed out loud, I teared up from truth bombs and I want to go back and read it again as this guy is smart and this books packs a lot of punch. If you are interested in learning more about who Jesus really is and not just who we make him out to be, read this book. If you want to know about love. Real love that God encourages us to do. Life changing, society changing, world changing love, read this book.”
About the Author
Bob Fabey is an Anglican priest with over 20 years of ministry experience with a variety of organizations. He holds a Master’s Degree in Divinity and a B.A. in History from the University of Montana. You can find him speaking at retreats, conferences or in churches, workshops, and keynotes. He has traveled extensively including Africa, Russia, and Central Asia. Bob has a deep passion to see Christians live according to their faith and speaks, mentors and writes to that end. From the beginning, Bob has sought to inspire those who are disenfranchised and increase dignity wherever he goes. Although Montana will always be his home, he resides in the greater Phoenix area. He loves to travel and hang out with his wife and kids, practice Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu and drink coffee.