Scandal-less Jesus

JesusIf I’m being perfectly honest, I think Jesus is quite boring.

If you doubt this, think of the hype that is necessary to manufacture a big Easter, followed by the subsequent attendance and energy lull.

The other day someone mentioned that there’s no need to talk about controversial topics because “Jesus is scandalous enough.”

I beg to differ.

Nothing is less scandalous today than Jesus.

Skeptics

To most of my skeptic friends, Jesus is offensive simply because he’s talked about so much. They’re exhausted with the Jesus blathering. He’s become an irritation with a little “i.”

Christians

To Christians, Jesus is actually more boring that he is to skeptics, because not only is he talked about too much; they feel like they are the ones that have to keep the conversation going.

Put more specifically, I think the Jesus of history is boring.

He’s forever tainted. Marred and incapable of inciting shock in anyone except those used to being manipulated by the Christian machine.

The scandal.

The real scandal.

Is the person with skin on them that chooses to literally live out the teachings of Jesus.

Show me someone who’s crazy enough to literally…

  • Forgive someone who seriously hurt them, not just once, but over and over again
  • Give what they own to the poor
  • Actually go to pagans with the gospel rather than simply “inviting them to church”
  • Control their anger
  • End their lust
  • Stop their lying
  • Turn down any opportunity to garner attention
  • Let the homeless actually live with them in their house
  • Visit the local prison to extend love and grace
  • Stay married, and faithful, for life
  • Pray, but without pretense
  • Identify and pour into a small group of future disciple-makers
  • Give away a large part of what they earn
  • Hang out with prostitutes, the ostracized, and marginalized

Show me someone who starts to live this way and I’ll show you someone that scares the shizz out of church people.

Can you point to just one person in your “church” that is actually doing this?

Honestly.

Just one?

Brian loves helping Christians live thoughtful, courageous lives. He's a popular blogger, author, and pastor at Christ's Church of the Valley in the suburbs of Philadelphia.

  • hdssh

    The scandal is doubly bad if you consider how this translates into our corporate expresssion of Jesus. Knowing there are some exceptions, nonetheless the general corporate expression of Jesus is dull, dull, dull. We gather in churches, speak in jargon, recite words pre-prepared, and go through the motions. For goodness sake, we’re gathering in the presence of Jesus! Where’s the creativity of a meeting with Jesus? Where’s the conversation with Jesus. Where’s Jesus?

    I’m reminded of John Wimber when he recalled how after his conversion he went to church expecting to see the stuff of Jesus’ presence! Needless to say he was frustrated, but he put that frustration to good use … so should we.

    Sigh. Just expressing my frustration as currently being experienced.

    Hadassah (http://hdssh.weebly.com)

  • bblande

    A few, but not many…and my congregation has roughly 4,000 regular attenders. Especially taboo topics are abortion and gay marriage.

  • Billy Pilgrim

    There are one family and one individual in my church family that are doing what you described. Far less than one percent. And I’m not one of them, yet. But I appreciate the challenge you’ve expressed, Brian.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Jim-Kilson/558740263 Jim Kilson

    Perhaps the Jesus that the church has “created” in it’s own image is quite boring, but the real Jesus is anything but boring.

    • http://www.facebook.com/jessicaponce25 Jessica Ponce

      I VERY MUCH AGREE HE HAS CHANGED MY LIFE, I AM FOREVER SAVED HE GAVE ME HIS BLOOD AND HIS FLESH OFF HIS BODY SO I WOULDNT GO TO HELL AND BE APART FROM HIM FOR ALL ETERNITY! NOW YOU TELL ME IS HE BORING NOW? i BEG THE DIFFER

      • http://www.BrianJones.com/ Brian Jones

        I’m not saying he doesn’t change lives. I’m just betting that on any given day you’re more enraptured by the news, lunch, and what’s the new show on TV. Am I wrong?

  • Jeff Alexander

    Excellent!

  • http://www.facebook.com/brenda.l.sampson.1 Brenda L. Sampson

    Wow! Do you even know Jesus at all? I mean really know Him? How can you even think to use His name and “boring” in the same sentence. This baffles me.

    • ChanellyG.

      Dear Brenda, did you read this whole article? This is exactly the kind of Jesus-Promoting blogging we need to get attention to his actual awesomeness! :)

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=749525558 Mindi Cherry

    I can say that my Mother-in-Law would be considered a freak. She sets a great example for her family, gives an obscene amount each month to charity (as well as her time), forgives people no matter what, attends church at least 3x/week and every day during Lent (she is Catholic). Her love and her faithfulness to my late Father In Law was never in question, If my FIL would have allowed her to visit prisoners, I am sure she would. I never met a more even-keeled, peaceful, spiritual and God-loving person

    I love her to bits, but sometimes I just want to flick her in the forehead! ;)

  • Des

    I don’t know who you are hanging out with or what your attitude it but I have never bord with Jesus. I Deffanatly thought that when I became a Christian I would be bord but its actually been a suspenseful ride! It’s actually the most exciting thing I have ever done. I have only read 3 of your blog post but I can’t tell if your Christian or not. It’s not my place to judge someone else’s servant. And if other people find this helpful in glorifying God than cool, but I don’t get it!! Maybe I’m missing something.