Jesus would make a lousy dinner guest

A few weeks back, one of our pastors gave this great sermon. She started by asking the congregation to play that game whereby you invite three people, living or dead, to a dinner party. We were to share our picks with people sitting near us.

The pastor then said that most of us church folks probably had Jesus on the list, and the congregation murmured in agreement. But do we REALLY want Jesus at our soiree? Because He could be quite annoying.

Look at some examples: one woman, Martha, puts on a nice meal, yet Jesus sides with lazy Mary who is just hanging out listening to Him. At a fancy gala, Jesus allowed “that woman” to wash his feet – with her hair? He ate with sinners, including those tax collectors, who were ALWAYS ripping off people. Not to mention his last dinner where, by the end of the night, he had been denied, betrayed and taken off to prison.

I saw this story – don’t know if it’s apocryphal or factual, and it really does not matter – about how church members mistreat a homeless man in church, unaware it is their pastor in disguise. I DO know, having gone to various churches over the years, that the narrative rings true. So does Sharp Little Pencil’s Memo To Shrinking Churches.

So as we await the coming of the cute little baby Jesus, remember that He grows up to be that pain-in-the-neck guy who wants us to feed the hungry, welcome the stranger, clothe the naked, tend to the sick, and visit the imprisoned. Did I mention He is REALLY IRRITATING?
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Why I Still Go To Church.

12 thoughts on “Jesus would make a lousy dinner guest”

  1. Roger, thanks for the shout-out on my poem. Yes, dinner guest, add that to the list!! I’m going to that homeless man link; it looks intriguing.

    And yes, everybody gets all warm and gooshy about baby Jesus… then they aren’t quite sure what to do with Easter… but that’s what Easter baskets and egg hunts are for…

    Amy

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  2. Good points! I often wonder how so many Christians can focus so much on Jesus’s power of salvation and not at all on His Message. Maybe it’s because His Message can be just as annoying to people as it was 2,000 years ago.

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  3. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. If the real Jesus of Nazareth walked into any typical church on a Sunday morning, then I would give the guy maybe 20 minutes before the congregation frog-marched him out to the end of the parking lot and hung him on a light pole. End of history.

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  4. Once we’re over the lambs and bunnies Jesus, we realize JC was quite the radical. I’d like to think he’d be comfortable in my church. I think it’s one of the most authentic Christian worship experiences I’ve ever been a part of.

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  5. I’m United Church of Christ, and we often have homeless folks join us at the 11am Praise service. The early-service folks would sniff, but we encourage people to bring coffee and donuts into the sanctuary. We feed everyone and our motto is, “That They May All Be One,” and “God is Still Speaking.”

    God speaks most strongly through Jesus’ message of unconditional love. Peace, Amy

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