Letting Jesus Disturb Us

Hopping Hadrian's Wall

“This teaching is difficult; who can accept it?”

That’s what people were saying about Jesus’ sermon. And I think it’s pretty obvious that they didn’t mean it as a compliment. Jesus had just finished rocking their proverbial boats by claiming that the only way to experience eternal life is to eat his flesh and drink his blood.

I can only imagine what the response would have been if members of his audience had been the kind of sensationalistic journalists whose voices tend to dominate the media today: “Jesus of Nazareth endorses cannibalism!” or maybe “Radical leader of suicide-cult initiates followers into vampire ritual!” But Jesus’ listeners seem to have been a little more reserved than present-day news reporters, so they stopped at “This teaching is difficult”.

And who can blame them, really? We hear these words with the benefit of two thousand years of church tradition, wherein our pastors regularly…

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