So, I just finished reading Jesus, A Biography from A Believer by Paul Johnson. He is an acknowledged journalist/historian that has written masterpieces of historical analysis on great people such as Jesus of Nazareth, Socrates, Churchill and Napoleon.
Jesus Was A Cool Dude
Lately, I have been searching for truth and felt compelled to read a simple biography on Jesus. In one hundred and thirty five pages I fell in love with the archetype of Jesus. The crucifixion filled my heart with compassion and love while the resurrection confirmed my belief in the invisible.
Jesus was truly a good soul. The author created a New Ten Commandments based on the four Gospels he used…
1. Each of us must develop a true personality: Jesus taught that each of us is unique, and that each has, in addition to a body, a soul in which our character is preserved. The body is frail and mortal; the soul is indestructible and timeless.
2. Accept, and abide by, universality. The consistent, daily, unremitting implication of Jesus’s teaching is to see the human race as a whole. Each soul is unique, but each is part of humanity.
3. Respect the fact that we are all equal in God’s eyes. Striving to be first was something Jesus found distasteful. He disliked seeing the results as human beings formed hierarchies.
4. The need for love in human relationships, at all times and in every situation. “Love” was a word often on his lips, whether it be the love of God or the love of other human beings.
5. Mercy: We are to show mercy just as God shows it to us. It is an emotional word, like “love”-with which it is intimately connected. It is hard to define, but instantly recognizable when exercised.
6. Balance: enough said.
7. The cultivation of an open mind. Jesus’s life and death were a struggle against those whose minds were closed. He disliked bigotry in any form and spoke out against it constantly.
8. Truth: He so famously said, “I am the way, the truth and the life.” Truth is found by going God’s way, and with the grain of the natural world, not against it.
9. Power, its exercise, and the respect due to the powerless. Jesus had disposal limitless power and, as his conduct during the temptations and thereafter throughout his ministry showed, he was careful always to exercise it with restraint and moderation, with mercy, pity, and love.
10. Show courage: Jesus showed this through his words, actions and sufferings.
Perhaps I am following the tenth commandment through this blog. I am showing courage by agreeing with the way Jesus lived his life. He lived in a cruel, unthinking world just like our terrifying twenty first century. We all must seek an inner life of humility and love, of generosity and mercy, of forgiveness and hope. The famous words still ring true: do as Jesus did.
I found my own simple Bible to keep with me wherever I go and strive to be the best person I can be. I can teach this to my children and have hope that they will live in a more peaceful world. Thanks Jesus. You were a really cool dude.