Jesus in John 15:18 consoles the apostles that he was hated first "If the world will hate you and want to harm you, keep remembering that it hated and abused me first."  Those who do not detest Jesus if he is a fraud in fact are hardly moral people.   Jesus knew what he deserved.  An implication of what he said is that if you are hated by the world - symbol of the godless and worldly social and political system, you really are following him.  Christians praised by the secular world are not really Christians.

Gary Wills in Why Priests? talks a bit about Jesus as role model. He points out that he is not really what most people want or more importantly need.

He was not a parent.

We know little about him as a son.  I would say that what we do know is a lad who never once says anything nice to his parents.  He comes across as insubordinate.

We know nothing about his marriage – we believe he was not married.

In John 8 Jesus was tested by a mob who brought an adulteress to him.  They wondered if he would condemn the law commanding that she be stoned to death and thus offend Judaism his religion and lose all his followers.  Or if he would break Roman law by agreeing to let her be slain.  All he needed to do was walk away.  He didn't need to dodge but Christians want us to think he did look for a way out.  The accusers were breaking the law themselves for she was not tried.  They were not authorised.  To torment her he pretended she should be stoned but only if any of the men were good enough to kill her.  They surprisingly did walk away and leave her but he said at the end she was an adulteress thus leaving her open to being murdered by stoning within the Jewish law.  He validated mob extremism by even listening to them.  He did nothing to make sure she even got home safely.  He validated the accusation against her and thus sent to a life of hell where she was seen as unemployable and a reject and an outcast.

He did a lot of anti-cultural things – raging in the Temple, telling a man not to bury his father, using strong scary language, left a farmer robbed of his pigs.

Marriage is a core thing in Christianity.  The family is the basic unit of the Church which is why the Church involves itself in it and blesses it and regulates it.  But Jesus did nothing to set this up.  “Before the eleventh century there was no such thing as a Christian wedding ceremony in the Latin church, and throughout the Middle Ages there was no single church ritual for solemnizing marriage between Christians” (Joseph Martos, Doors to the Sacred: A Historical Introduction to Sacraments in the Catholic Church (Liguori Publications, 2001)

What Jesus did however was to say that divorce to remarry was adultery.  This was terrible in an age where girls were made to wed before they knew any better and he was locking them into marriages with potential paedophiles and men who saw them as breeders.   Women in new relationships when their husbands were still alive were stigmatised.   In those times women were demonised and despised anyway.  Jesus wanted to add to that by sticking the adulteress slur on them even if they were married to their new men.  And because they had new men.  Any children would have been hated as much as children outside of wedlock were.

All you can say that those who say they would do only what Jesus would do are fooling themselves.


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