If you were alive while Jesus was, would you have followed?
That was the question asked by a church intern after going through a course on the Life of Christ. The background to this question is that there were, generally, a kind of people who followed Jesus, and those who didn’t. Then you have to wonder, of which kind would you have been? And so, what kind of person you might have been during Jesus’ day may determine whether you would’ve been a follower of Jesus or not.
You see, the people who Jesus appealing usually were those who had nothing else to fall back on. They were the outcasts, the fools, the beggars, the widows, the Samaritans, the prostitutes, the Syrophoenician, the Roman soldiers, the slaves, the sick, the demon-possessed. And when they heard revolutionary words of hope and justice from this man, and when they saw the proof in healing and exorcism, this was good, beautiful, life-giving news.
As for those who were already in, those who had a rabbi to follow, those who served in the temple, those who had good healthcare, those who were influential, those who were rich, those who knew the Scriptures, and all who were faithful to all God commanded, they needn’t need Jesus. And even though they were looking for the Messiah, Jesus didn’t fit the Scriptural description . And who can blame them?
When I think about the Pharisees, the scribes, and especially Paul before his conversion, I can’t help but identify with them. I know if I lived during that time, and because of my personality, and my desire to know God’s word and to interpret it right, I would not have seen Jesus as the Messiah. I would’ve dismissed Jesus as, although a good and wise and miracle-working man but, a self-deceived man. I would not have been a follower of Jesus. Hopefully, I would’ve seen the light, like Saul.
So, Would you have been a Christian during Jesus’ day?