I was reading this morning and ran across a sentence that said this, “Jesus is a divisive character.” Certainly Jesus stirred up some controversies with his claim to the throne of God, but I wonder about Jesus today. Is Jesus the divisive character, or are Jesus followers the ones causing division?
Around the world, there are wars raging everywhere, and then there’s all the “skirmishes” too. People want peace. Jesus offers peace. The poor and the outcast long for a voice, a spokesperson, an advocate. Jesus came to the poor and hungry. The oppressed desire justice. Jesus sought justice in the face of oppressive systems. People want to feel worthy. Jesus offers love.
Around the globe, I believe, these are the things for which people are longing. Whether Jew or Christian, Muslim or Hindu, we all desire peace, justice, and love; these basic longings were addressed by Jesus. You see, Jesus was not the divisive character. The divisive characters are those of us who claim the name Christian, yet declare war, ignore the outcast, and shun our neighbor. The division we see in the world today is not because of Christ, but at least in part because of Christians. But our whole lives are about reflecting the life of Christ to others. I guess we’ve got a lot of work to do.