“Be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it.” Romans 12:2 (The Message Version)
I’m both enamored with and terrified by Jesus’ audacious ethic. His Sermon contains some of the most fetching words ever spoken and at the same time the most unachievable to live under human steam. Love your enemies, do something good for the person cursing you, and do it without telling anyone you did it seems pretty out of reach to me!
If you want to be “blessed” be poor, be sad, be meek, be hungry, be persecuted! His is a Kingdom of surprises. As he shatters socio-spiritual stereotypes he lures us into trusting him for assistance.
Jesus’ way of life was so nonsensical that most of his contemporaries thought he was just the newest crank in a long line of cranks. Undeterred, he determined that his upside downness would not end with him. He would perpetuate it in and through those brave enough to follow him. Given our predisposition toward conforming to cultural norms his proposition is nothing less than preposterous.
Therefore the only way for creatures so bent on our own preferences to practice his way of holy nonconformity is from the inside out.
This is an excerpt from a book I hope to publish in the near future on the Sermon on the Mount called: What In The World? Some Moral, Social, and Politically Disruptive Implications of Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount.
As such, I’d appreciate your feedback on this post and others to come in order to make the final copy publish-worthy.