The Moment when you become who you are meant to be-reflecting on Luke 2

Posted: March 27, 2018 by Ty in Brunch & Bible
Tags: , , , , , ,

Luke 2

The second chapter of Luke. The physician’s orderly and “historical” treatise on the rise of early Christianities. It is one that can provide conflict, and queries. For as noted previously, if the village was rarely left by those who lived there. How is it that these humble labourers could afford the trek to Bethlehem for a census? Was the census historical? That is a question that can be answered in varying degrees. Yet today I will challenge you, if it is not a historical census, then what is the purpose of the tool in the literature of Gospel. Gospel means good news, yet few understand it is a political platform, an outline of the way of life. This was written as a direct challenge to the Gospel of the Empire. It was written as a rallying call for the early believers that a different path of radical love, shattered barriers and chains of oppression was possible, and radical belonging should simply be a way of life.

So why the Census? It was the tool that showed the affront to the Empire the quickest to the non-Jewish-Monotheist audience. For the census was meant to flex the Empire muscle, and it was usurped by the birth of a baby, in a humble stable/creche. It even more so showed that the first called to this amazing sight was not the wealthy, military powers or religious controllers. The first called was the shepherds. Those outside in the fields, the lesser thans and not so wants arounds. Setting the tone for this political platform. It was about everyone being present—barriers shattered.

Even with following tradition of presentation and circumcision, the prophet and prophetess voice of Simeon and Anna rang out. The voices of the Elders affirming a different path being seen in this life lived. A life that would return to the humble village life, learning his faith at the hems of the matriarchs, growing in life and work with his father, Joseph as a labourer, until his time would come to step out and into the world.

There would be a story that they would return to Jerusalem for Passover where Jesus would teach the Rabbi’s showing his wisdom around his bar mitzvah age, and challenging even his parents to understand what they had agreed to. Was this possible? Maybe. Could it have been smaller in just how Jesus conducted himself in the village? Probably. Yet what was being illustrated was a boy becoming a man, and stepping outside of the caste of labourer close to untouchable, into a scholarly-priestly cast. In the 21st century Canada this may be hard to comprehend. But it is the story of a child breaking a barrier of exclusion. An imposed barrier placed around socio-economics and used to keep people oppressed.

Why is this a story of this barrier shattering?

Simple. Not only was it affirmed by the religious controllers in their own shock. Jesus took the stance of activist. His words struck chords with his parents who were probably hurt when he pointed out of course I would be here in my Dad’s place. But it was more that they were still thinking in the false system, the one where oppression was common place and accepted. Even though both Joseph and Mary had made decisions 12 years and 9 months earlier to step outside the system, they had so easily slipped, relapsed if you will to the addiction of the system. Jesus intervened on their recovery road.

As you enter the Gospel and see these stories of shattering barriers imposed by economics, politics, and religiosity…

  • what barriers do you see in your world today that need to be shattered?
  • Who are the shepherds to be welcomed?
  • What is your Bethlehem stable?
  • Your temple prophecy?

Your moment of throwing away who the world says you are to be, and becoming who you are meant to be?

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