Received my long-awaited copy of December’s Comment magazine. All-around great stuff for Christians who are interested in actually thinking and living like Christians.
In an excellent article (“Why Architecture Matters” by David Greusel), I came across this, which struck me as odd:
“…Jesus obviously excelled at whatever he put his hand to.”
Now, substantively this statement had little to no bearing on the article (which is why I didn’t feel the need to include the context). Nevertheless, I think the assumption is worth questioning:
Why would we assume that Jesus “excelled at whatever he put his hand to”? Couldn’t he have been just a mediocre carpenter, for instance? Being without sin, he would not have been lazy, sure. But what does being without sin have to do with “excelling”? Not saying he did not or was not capable of excelling at some things (a few fairly obvious ones come to mind), but why would we assume that he excelled at everything he set his hand to?
It seems that here “sinless” has been conceptually conflated with “ideal”. But Jesus was not the “ideal” man (“Greeks” he mutters, spitting thrice). All things being equal, I’m happy not looking like Jesus as the Bible describes him. I bet he wouldn’t be able to get a job with Calvin Klein, and that’s not because there’s (necessarily) something wrong with Calvin’s understanding of what makes an attractive male. According to Scripture, Jesus just doesn’t fit the bill.
I certainly mean no disrespect for my Lord and Saviour. I just wonder: Scripturally, why couldn’t he have been (be) mediocre at something?
Post Script – I want to reiterate again what a wonderful periodical Comment is. Please visit them at www.wrf.ca/comment and subscribe. Each issue is humbly spilled perfume.