Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Jesus as Rabbi (part two)

From chapter 2: "Why a Jewish Rabbi?" from Sitting at the Feet of Rabbi Jesus: How the Jewishness of Jesus Can Transform Your Faith, by Ann Spangler and Lois Tverberg.

Jesus came not only giving us the word of God, words from his Father, but he came as the Word of God, and the last word God has spoken and is speaking to his people. As such it is to be expected that what we find Jesus doing much of the time in the gospels is teaching. And living.

Rabbis not only taught their disciples, or followers how to live, but had to be examples, and exemplary in what they taught. As the authors point out, while Jesus came as Messiah, Deliverer (Savior) and Redeemer, still Rabbi as in "my Master" and Teacher was not only at the heart of what he did as we see in the gospels, but is also at the heart of what he does today by the Spirit through the word within the church for the world.

Too often people see Jesus as Redeemer and Savior so that their sins are taken care of, and they have a place in heaven, period. But Jesus came secondarily as the way to heaven. Jesus is the way that humans are to live in relationship to God, to others, to themselves, and to the world. We today have a Rabbi who perfectly exemplifies what he teaches us. And his name is Jesus.

What thoughts do you have from or on this?


Ted M. Gossard said...

I don't like to comment on my own posting, but I would like to add here that I believe a common problem that we in Jesus all wrestle with is that when we come to faith in Jesus, we then proceed with a worldview that is little changed. Of course a process is to start: one of not being conformed to this world, but of being transformed by the renewing of our minds.

I believe this emphasis on Jesus as our Master and Teacher is important in that we need to unlearn completely the way of this world in learning the way of Jesus and of the kingdom of God in Jesus.

L.L. Barkat said...

The living. That's where it holds such challenge, comfort and possibility.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Yes, L.L. Well said.

Not unlike the disciples of old. Beyond us, but there for us in Jesus, and just as real and down to earth as our everyday existence.