sunflower field

“And as he sat at dinner in the house, many tax collectors and sinners came and were sitting with him and his disciples.”

— Matthew 9:10

WHERE DO WE GET OUR INFORMATION AND JESUS

We are in the midst of a populist revolution. It is occurring in the worlds of politics, the marketplace, and our daily lives. Everyday people are changing the landscape of politics, both in the USA and the world. Companies that didn’t exist a few years ago are growing explosively. We can change a company’s direction with favorable reviews we post online. What is driving this democratization is our access to information and our ability to affect information. The Internet has allowed us to reach outside our own private sphere and state our opinions to a larger audience. The common person is emerging as a driving force for all aspects of our world.

“What and how we believe was modeled by Jesus, two thousand years ago.”

But we are at a crossroads. What do we do with all this information? Who do we listen to? Are we influencers or followers? The avalanche of information has transformed journalism into editorializing versus news reporting. We sift out what we agree with and ignore the rest.  Greater divides are being created within our society. Our religious elite assert what we should believe. What and how we believe was modeled by Jesus, two thousand years ago.

“Jesus knows that among the common people resides the majority of humankind.”

In today’s verse we notice Jesus eating with tax collectors and sinners. In the ancient Judean world, the tax collectors were considered the thugs of the marketplace. Sinners ate with Jesus because they wanted instruction and guidance. The religious elite of this period frowned upon these dinners. They felt pure and righteous. Sinners were welcomed by Jesus because they had made an honest assessment of their spiritual state. They knew they were not accepted by the elite. They were tired of being told about their sin; they wanted a voice. Jesus knows that among the common people resides the majority of humankind.

“With the voice of the Holy Spirit we talk directly to God when we read the Bible.”

When we consider the original twelve apostles, we notice that none are from the religious elite. They are fishermen, a tax collector, a Zealot; they are from the masses. They were given the chance to be influencers. Jesus picked ordinary people because they knew the unvarnished life. They knew the details of everyday living. They knew the struggle of paying bills and tending flocks. In effect, Jesus “democratized” God for us. Today, Jesus is still with us in the Bible. Our direct source of information. Reading the Bible removes the requirement of listening to what others tell us to think. With the voice of the Holy Spirit we talk directly to God when we read the Bible. The information we most need is there.

Blessings, until next time,
Bruce L. Hartman

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