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Take Up the Cross

5th Sunday after Pentecost

Take Up the Cross

Text: Luke 9:18-24

Who is Jesus?  You could make the argument that’s the most important question of all time.  This last week I saw a video of random people being interviewed on the streets of Richmond, VA.  The people were asked a number of questions including that all-important one—“Who is Jesus?”  The answers were all over the place.  “Jesus was a great teacher who lived a long time ago.”  “Jesus is a wonderful example of how to live that people can follow.”  One college-aged woman said, “I believe that Jesus was a real person who lived and taught and claimed to be the Son of God.  But I don’t believe that part because I’m an atheist and I don’t believe there is a god.”

If you polled other people I’m sure you would find other interesting answers, like, “Jesus is the founder of Christianity.”  “Jesus was a prophet like many of the other religions have.”  “Jesus was powerful figure that was looking to overthrow the upperclass regime of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”  “Jesus is the ultimate example of love.”

This is not a new phenomenon.  Even when Jesus was walking this earth the same thing was happening.  All kinds of people had all kinds of opinions about Jesus.  Listen to the beginning of the Gospel today: Once when Jesus was praying in private and his disciples were with him, he asked them, ‘Who do the crowds say I am?’  They replied, ‘Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah; and still others, that one of the prophets of long ago has come back to life.’” Read the rest of this entry