Who is Jesus? I’ve discovered many things about who He is, who He was, as I continue to partake in His words, in my devotions, in my small church group, and in Sunday service. I find myself learning something “new,” and focusing on that one aspect. And then I learn something else and focus on that. I need to learn to incorporate all that I learn into one person, because that is Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior. He was gentle, with gentle hands and words. He was loving and extended that love to all peoples. Jesus was strong. He was faced with adversity, mocked every step of the way, beaten. Even His family did not believe in Him. But through it all he remained strong, and never resorted to the actions that we may resort to when the same thing happens to us. We tend to withdraw into our shells, or we lash out against our persecutors, and make the situation worse. He continued on His path, not letting anything faze Him. Jesus was faced with temptation in the desert and beat it (Mt & Lk 4). He did not succumb as so often we find ourselves doing.
As I look at Jesus and His life, I see all of this, and this is what I focus on. I focus on the gentleness, the love, and the strength. But there is more to Him than that. I find myself at times pushing away thoughts of how He gets angry and takes action. None of His actions were ever sinful ones, but He definitely let people know He was not happy. He saw the temple turned into a “den of robbers” (Mt 21:13; Mk 11:17) and took care of the situation by overturning the tables and telling all of them to get out. In some of His teachings held in front of religious leaders He would incorporate parables that spoke about them and their foolishness and unbelief (such as The Parable of the Tenants in Mt 21:33-46). He never held back the truth even if it made someone angry. He point blank told Judas Iscariot, “Yup, you’re the one who is going to betray me,” and then He let Peter know that He too was going to deny Him that very night. He didn’t worry about what people thought about Him. He was sent to do God’s work on earth, and that’s what He was doing.
Jesus was also a person who, though not needing anything from this earth, asked His friends for emotional support as He awaited His betrayal in the garden, and put a lot of emphasis on the importance of friendship. This part of His life also showed just how scared He was for the next chapter of His life when He would be handed over, beaten, and killed. The final image I have is when He cried out to God on the cross before giving up His life; a powerful image in the hearts of many.
From birth to death Jesus has shown us an array of human emotion and has given us a glimpse into the man He was, and the God who sent Him. I have only spat out a few examples, for there are many, many more. “Jesus wept:” a verse in John that is a topic in many churches (Jn 11:35). Just those two words together can create much to be discussed. It never fails how awed I am by Him each time I read or think about what He did while on this earth. And He continues to work in our lives today with the same array of emotions. God is not a “sterile” being. He is a God of variety, and He Himself is complex. We should not look at Him, His Son, or His Spirit one-dimensionally. We need to focus on all aspects of His character, for then we will be able to get closer to knowing who He really is.
My prayer is that we all seek Him for His true self, and not the image we place on Him. May we remember not to disregard those areas that we don’t seem “fitting” of our God, because what we learn of Him on our walk is our God. He is a beautiful montage of actions and emotions.