Unless you reason outside the box of human reason, you can forget about understanding the Jesus of the Bible. Only those willing and able to break the constraints of common experience and human rationalism can hope to make any sense of Jesus’ life and ministry.
The birth narrative of Jesus demands that we think outside the box. We have no conceptual or experiential category for a woman conceiving a child without sperm from a man. But the biblical authors announce that Jesus was conceived in the womb of a virgin named Mary by a direct act of God. We are to understand that although fully human, Jesus had no earthly, biological father—a reality Mary found no easier to grasp than we do (Luke 1:31-35).
Mental - Box - Jesus - Bible - Explodes
Another mental box the Jesus of the Bible explodes is our understanding of kingship. Beginning with nursery rhymes and children’s stories and then attaining higher levels of historical awareness, we learn to conceive of kings as people born in palaces, attended by servants, and consumers of every luxury afforded by their culture. Kings rule their realms and lead armies. They conquer and reign, or at least try to.
But once again the Bible bursts the walls of this mental box. King Jesus is born in a cattle stall to a peasant woman. He is a wood worker and itinerant preacher who befriends commoners, carries no sword, and leads no army. And the placard proclaiming him king does not hang from an archway leading into his royal palace. It is not etched on a gold plate fixed to the back of an ivory throne. That placard is nailed to a rugged cross where Jesus is being tortured to death by soldiers and languishes under the curse of God (Matt. 27:35-46).
King - Critics - Scoff - Jesus - Crucifixion
“Some king!” the critics scoff. Yet Jesus prophesied His crucifixion (Luke...
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