What If Jesus Had Carried A Smart Phone?

November 19, 2014

And so I muse…What if Jesus and the disciples had carried smart phones? Wouldn’t it be helpful to have some Facebook video of a quadriplegic leaping to his feet? Or, how about Jesus taking a few selfies while strolling on the water? I wonder how many likes that would get? My favorite would have been Lazarus. I could just picture the disciples standing around Peter as he says, “Hey guys, check this out!”  Later, the man who was raised from the dead, would get to watch his own resurrection, over and over, because it had gone viral. “Lazurus, look right here! Man, everybody is holding their noses because you bro were rank! (That insight taken from John 11:39, one of the more amusing verses found in the Bible when read in the old King James Version, “Jesus said, ‘Take ye away the stone…’ Martha, the sister of him that was dead, saith unto him, ‘Lord, by this time he stinketh: for he hath been dead four days.’”) I love the old English. It just doesn’t get any better than “he stinketh.”

We live in an age of information. When it comes to matters of faith, we might be curious as to why God didn’t send His son to the earth when the prospects of publicity were a little more advanced. Wouldn’t a website, a Facebook page, a Jesus tweet, and a few selfies have helped the cause? Moreover, how about T.V. appearances, book deals and say…a Christmas Special? “And here he is folks…the One born in a manger, the King of of Kings and Lord of Lords…let’s give it up for Jesus!”   

But the Scriptures tell us that Christ came in the fullness of time and in a surreptitious way. Obviously that means he came before the cellular revolution and a mass media reach that is able to bring us news from around the globe in real time. He came in a time of Roman dominance and Jewish obsequiousness, a time of cobblestone roads, chariots and wind powered ships. Jesus arrived to a world where communication was slow. His works and His words were entrusted to eyewitnesses. Does that seem like poor planning on heaven’s part?

I‘m not so sure. The explosion of information has not improved our natural proclivity toward skepticism. It doesn’t matter all that much if we read it or saw it on the internet – we remain dubious (or should) about certain material posted for our viewing. We have all been “had” by clever photo-shopped images and by inspiring stories that turn out to be fabrications. The point being, technology has not improved the credibility of current events much if any more than the witness of a group of astonished fisherman relaying what they saw with their own eyes 2000 years ago. There were skeptics then and there are skeptics now. Availability of information aside, that has remained constant. And we should also mention this – even some who were eyewitnesses to Christ’s life and works remained skeptical. Their skepticism was such that they would soon lead the crowds in the thundering ball-park chant of, “Crucify him!”

I mentioned in my last post an intentionality to introduce, or perhaps re-introduce my readers to a prospective life of faith. I understand that in so doing we need the gloves off at the outset. I write with a supreme confidence that you are a skeptic or that you intimately know one. Or, even if you are a person who believes, your faith flame may be little more than a faint flicker.  That is okay for now. If you’re reading this you’ve at least arrived at a place of respectful consideration. You’re also, in case you didn’t know, at a place where you are the recipient of my affectionate prayers. Whether you have the wherewithal to pray for yourself doesn’t matter just yet. I have you covered. 

As we move along, we will talk more about skepticism. I believe we can go quite far in removing, what the Scriptures refer to as: “…speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God.”  As we do so, I will remain profoundly respectful of sincere unbelief and persistently pesky towards slovenly unbelief.

Okay, that’s enough for today. Let me close with something I once heard - a clever aphorism which I have found helpful over the years. It went like this:

We have always been taught that seeing is believing, but a great truth that I have learned says just the opposite: believing is seeing.

And so it goes…sometimes we have to take a step toward the light before we begin to see the light. 


© Patrick Crossing 2015