Whatever your view of Jesus of Nazareth, there is little room to question the claim that He is the most influential individual in history, even though he lived a mere 33 years two millennia ago in a backwater region of the Roman Empire.
Australian blogger and pastor Kurt Mahlburg says that is why Jesus is so often co-opted for causes other than His gospel, noting on his blog:
“Let’s be honest: It’s all too easy to highjack Jesus and make Him the pin-up boy for our cause. Depending on your flavor, He’s the middle-class moralist, the enlightened guru, the hellfire preacher, the social justice warrior—and the list grows every year.
“The reason Jesus keeps getting a rebrand—the reason He simply refuses to go away—is that He is without question the most influential person in history.”
Mahlburg then offers 10 reasons to justify his claim. I especially like reason number two — Jesus Launched An Equality Revolution — and his number 10 — Jesus’ Claim To Be God Is Unique.
Just to give you a taste of Mahlburg’s reasoning, he says of his second reason that “most ancient civilizations practiced slavery; even Plato and Aristotle defended it. Fast forward to the modern world and there are more slaves now than when slavery was abolished.” So much for “progress,” right?
And of his 10th reason, Mahlburg points out that “one final quality that sets Jesus apart is His claim to be God. That might sound odd, given that countless people through time have done the same.
“But actually, the claim of most was that they were a god. Jesus however claimed to be the God—the Creator of the universe, walking among us in human flesh.”
Go here for the full discussion of Mahlburg’s 10 reasons. I can just about guarantee that everybody who reads this will encounter facts that prompt new thoughts about old assumptions.
By the way, I found Mahlburg via The Poached Egg, a great blog that I highly commend to you.