Which Jesus did you grew up with?
I grew up with a Jesus who carried lambs on his back as he laughed and hugged the children. He wore a white robe with a blue sash and spent a lot of time by the flannel-board Sea of Galilee. He died on the cross and rose again so that I could spend eternity in heaven. The power of Jesus was found in his death.
In class, we talked about the Jesus who would have been recognized as a prophet, …but a new prophet came around every few years. He would have been recognized as an orator, but telling parables was commonplace. He would have been recognized as a leader, but he led a group of peasants and outcasts around the countryside.
This had all been done before.
But Jesus was subversive. His stories had an unexpected twist – the underdogs won. He spoke of his peasant followers as if they were royalty. He claimed to be the Son of God.
Jesus not only died a powerful death, but he lived a powerful life.
Just not the kind of power we would expect.