This is Holy Week. That seems a good time to look at how Jesus challenged followers to live. While we sometimes revert to the comfort of cultural traditions, Jesus expected something else.

While we won’t admit to it, most (all?) people put other people into people categories.

antisocialSo women can’t be priests. Denominations or congregations which serve a certain racial group make those outside that either uncomfortable or unwelcome. I remember a friend visiting a congregation and was told he had to have a tie to come in. They even had some on hand to offer. Wear it or no entry allowed. Certain people who have different social skills (or lack certain social skills) have been refused a welcome by some religious groups.

Now, I know none of you reading this would ever place a person in a category. You would never judge another by looks or racial connection. A Pentecostal type would never get a cold shoulder in a reformed Presbyterian worship, right?

Jesus repeatedly interacted with people that contradicted social norms. Jesus touched lepers, treated women as people, elevated children to model status, rejected human authority over other humans, denounced human regulations which superceded Scripture or enslaved people to a system, treated social outcasts with respect, washed people’s feet (which was just about the lowest task a slave performed), and attacked the businesses set up in the Temple (literally).

Now, acting like this would get almost anybody either thrown out of a congregation, or avoided at the very least.

Yet this is how Jesus acted and we must copy the ways of Jesus, right?

5040034-jesus-christ-statue-in-crossConsider that God told Paul to write, “You’ve become a new person. This new person is continually renewed in knowledge to be like its Creator. Where this happens, there is no Greek or Jew, circumcised or uncircumcised, barbarian, uncivilized person, slave, or free person. Instead, Christ is everything and in everything” (Colossians 3:10-11 God’s Word).

And God also said, say it again just in case, because “There are neither Jews nor Greeks, slaves nor free people, males nor females. You are all the same in Christ Jesus” (Galatians 3:28 God’s Word).

Well, we are all the same in Christ.

Turn your labelling brain inside out and upside down and re-shape it into the form of Jesus behaviour.

Make every week holy, just as God is holy.