Have you ever wondered if Jesus was physically here today (incarnation) where he would be?

Where would he be living? Who would he hang around with? Where would you find him?

The only way to possibly guess would be to look at his Modus Operandi. The only way to do that is to look at the Gospel story.

Jesus was born the illegitimate son of an unwanted teenage pregnancy. In a culture of hospitality, he was forced out of the family home and into the stable. The first visitors were a group of shepherds and some star-following Gentiles. His family could only offer a couple of doves, because they were so poor. He spent his formative years as a refugee.

When his family returned he lived in a backwater village, that nothing good came from. When he eventually began a public ministry the first person to acknowledge him was a crazy hermit. He gathered around him a group of 12 men, none of whom were able to pass their 11 plus, and were eking out their existence as fishermen, anarchists and tax-collectors. Some had previously followed the crazy hermit.

Jesus spent three years travelling around touching people who were untouchable, and making them touchable again. Telling stories that we still don’t fully understand. Being accused of being a drunk and a glutton because of the company he kept. Feeding hungry people, and arguing with holy people. Talking in public with an adulterous woman, or a Roman Centurion. Defining his neighbour as the foreigners you hate who live in your country.

Blessing the people that everyone else hated, and cursing the people everyone else admired. Staying with his friends in the home of the poor (Bethany), a social housing project two miles from the centre of Jerusalem. He had no home, lived off the charity of women and told a rich man to sell his possessions in order to follow him into eternal life.

He wrote no books, left no practice to follow to find enlightenment, apart from remembering him with a simple meal of bread and wine. Was tried as rebel, died the death of a thief and was buried in a borrowed tomb.

Based on this, where would you find him today? If you are truly a follower of this Jesus where should you be?

 

 

Michael Shaw

Michael Shaw is the pastor of Devonport Community Baptist Church in Plymouth.