February 22, 2005

Jesus at the Festival / Marjorie

About the middle of the festival Jesus went up into the temple and began to teach. The Jews were astonished at it, saying, "How does this man have such learning, when he has never been taught?"

Aha, a scriptural basis for my for my choice of educational philosophies, unschooling. Maybe I'm twisting that a bit, but I love the Biblical reference to the idea that people can learn best on their own and do not need to be 'taught' in order to learn. Of course, Jesus being God may undercut my application of this to my children.

Then Jesus answered them, "My teaching is not mine but his who sent me.Anyone who resolves to do the will of God will know whether the teaching is from God or whether I am speaking on my own. Those who speak on their own seek their own glory; but the one who seeks the glory of him who sent him is true, and there is nothing false in him."

This is a great comfort to me as I try to discern the Lord's leading in my life. Of course, its also a huge responsibility, which is probably why it makes me anxious. It is reassuring to hear that we will know if we truly seek; God is not playing games with us.

"Did not Moses give you the law? Yet none of you keeps the law. Why are you looking for an opportunity to kill me?"The crowd answered, "You have a demon! Who is trying to kill you?"Jesus answered them, "I performed one work, and all of you are astonished... If a man receives circumcision on the sabbath in order that the law of Moses may not be broken, are you angry with me because I healed a man's whole body on the sabbath? Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment."

Jesus points out the hypocrisy of legalistic religion -- those who technically keep the laws but have no mercy or compassion or love for others, the concepts underlying the laws. The charge against Jesus for healing on the Sabbath is a pretext and everyone knows it. The charge they eventually nail him on (oh, bad pun) is claiming to be God, which is a clear violation of Deuteronomy; for those who don't believe Jesus is God, it is a serious and truthful charge. Such a hard choice -- if Jesus is God, you'd better listen up and do as he says; if he's not God, you'd better not think he is God or you're an idolator. But how does one know? Jesus says above that if you're seeking to do the will of God, you'll know. I guess faith is confidence in what we believe.


At 8:47 p.m., Blogger Larry said...

What Jesus said and did is the fullest proof that he was not "taught" by that pack of wolves. And so it is with those who decline or reject conventional schooling; it serves primarily to condition children to be good citizens of the domination system in which we live.

You may remember that William Blake, a towering intellectual and spiritual genius, spent less than one day in formal schooling.

Here's one of his small jewels that any mother has to love:
Little Black Boy.


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