“What Would Jesus Do?”
You don’t hear Christians asking that question very often any more. Some of that probably has to do with the “WWJD?” trend passing, but I suspect it also has to do with a realization that we didn’t know how to accurately answer the question. Instead, those of us who attempted to answer it usually ended up being influenced by our own desires and agendas- essentially transforming “What Would Jesus Do?” into “What Can I Justify Doing?”
The better question (which we seldom seem to ask) is “What Did Jesus Do?” In other words, what is the actual example that Christ set for us? That’s still a pretty hard question sometimes, in many cases because we don’t like the answers we find when we take an honest look.
After all, when it came to the people in Jesus’ culture that society had rejected- those who didn’t necessarily think, believe, or live the way the religious Jews thought they should- how did Jesus treat them? Did he condemn them? Did he distance himself from them? Did he tell them they weren’t welcome among his followers? No, it seems to me that those are the people he intentionally sought out so that he could talk with them, eat with them, spend time with them, and just love them as they needed to be loved…as we all need to be loved. In fact, if he had a harsh word for anyone in his culture it was for those who claimed to be most religious, those who elevated themselves while passing judgment on others, those who deep down probably comforted themselves with the expectation of seeing God smite “the wicked” around them.
This strip embodies all of those ideas. What do I think Jesus would do if he encountered someone who claimed to not believe in him? I think he’d love that person anyway, and yes, probably sit down and have a meal with him. The sad thing to me is that far too many of us would probably be like the guy lurking in the background, hoping to see Jesus condemn someone so that we could feel better about ourselves.
I’m not perfect by any means, nor do I have all of the answers, but I’d rather spend my life striving to emulate Jesus’ love rather than waste my life hoping to witness the condemnation of another of God’s children. Thanks for reading.