Help Wanted: Public Relations Manager for Jesus

PublicRelationsEvery day on the job as the Public Relations manager for Jesus would have been part comedy, part nightmare. The man was born without a political bone in his body.

To begin with, he had poor taste in friends. Case in point: the Jews detested the money-hungry, backstabbing tax gougers, but Jesus marches right up to one of those traitors and says, “Follow me.” He welcomed a zealot into his inner circle, even though those guys were the ancient equivalent of domestic terrorists. And the fact that he rubbed shoulders with women in the sex trade, Samaritan heretics, leprous pariahs, and other miscreants of society is well known. If the old adage is true, that if you hang out with dogs, you’re gonna get fleas, then Jesus must have been crawling with them.

There was also the ongoing problem with his unwillingness to keep his mouth shut. He told stories that were designed as attacks upon the most powerful men in the religious establishment. Many of his parables were the verbal equivalent of slapping the pope in the face. In one of his tirades, he went on and on about how these religious elites were nothing but attention-hungry, big-headed sons of Satan. Yet these men whom he attacked were the very ones who, if properly handled, could have been used to accelerate his career.

He also opened himself up to slanderous accusations. Because he hung out with the wrong crowd, his enemies mocked, “Look, a gluttonous man and a drunkard, a friend of tax-collectors and sinners!” (Matt 11:19). Imagine if Zaccheus, top dog among the tax-gougers, had taken a selfie with Christ at his dinner table and posted it on Jerusalem’s social media. Oh, the outrage! Jesus was ruining his reputation by not only welcoming, but actively seeking out, the wrong people.

And I won’t even go into the public embarrassment that must have ensued when he went berserk in the temple courts, upending tables, untying animals, and giving the crowd a tongue-lashing for transmogrifying his Father’s home into a business.

In short, from a PR perspective, Jesus chose the wrong friends and made the wrong enemies; opened himself up to a smear campaign; never learned to scratch the right backs; and sawed off any and every political limb he was sitting on. From a career perspective, he was a fool. From a religious perspective, he was a troublemaker. From a streetwise perspective, he danced with death. From a public relations perspective, he was a train wreck.

And from his Father’s perspective, he could do no wrong.

I never did care much for the WWJD question because Jesus is the poster child of unpredictability. If you ask me, “What would he do?” I’d say, “Probably what you would least expect.” He would ruin his reputation among religious folk by hanging out with those with soiled reputations. He would speak hard truth when soft, white lies would make life easier. He would touch lepers; compliment prostitutes and insult priests; flaunt his freedom in the face of legalists; and eventually get himself so deep in trouble that he ends up in handcuffs, in court, and onto a cross.

The wisdom of God will always look like foolishness to men. He is the God who chooses ungodlike ways to bring ungodly sinners into his kingdom of losers who get everything by grace. Jesus matches none of our expectations. Thank God he doesn’t. He befriends all of us, no matter who we are, no matter how ruined we are, no matter how good or bad we think we are. He call us, one and all, to himself, that in him we might become part of that motley crew of redeemed fools whom Jesus calls friends.

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What we need in our fragmented world, full of hurting people, is the love of Jesus Christ, who InfantPriestfrontcoverwelcomes home sinners with a grace that knows no bounds. My book Christ Alone: Meditations and Sermons, is packed with reflections that go that extra mile of grace. Again and again, they present the Christ who is crucified and risen for you. Please take a moment to check it out here. You may also be interested in my collections of hymns and poetry entitled, The Infant Priest, which you can purchase here. Both books are also available on Amazon, as is my booklet Why Lutherans Sing What They Sing (also on Kindle). Thank you for your prayers and support!

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6 thoughts on “Help Wanted: Public Relations Manager for Jesus

  1. Ginger Arrant on said:

    Dare I venture to say that Jesus, friend to sinners, might have provided wine at a gay wedding?

    • Kaladin Stormblessed on said:

      No Ginger, Jesus wouldn’t have provided wine at a homosexual “marriage”. I understand the sentiment, but it doesn’t take into account Jesus’ clear teaching on marriage in Matthew 19:4-6. He would befriend them, but wouldn’t attend said “marriage” nor did he ever. He would’ve loved them and called them to repentance, having showed the better way through love, faith and repentance. He affirmed the union of man and woman in marriage as the complete image of Himself and his Bride the church. He didn’t preach sentimental and romantic love at the expense of truth. He preached the truth in love.

  2. Dead Mann on said:

    One of the inevitable results of PTSD is low self esteem, depression, and anxiety. Your trauma leaves you thinking that you are something people scrape off shoes, that you deserve nothing, and you can never really be human again. You are flawed or damaged too badly to be repaired. My progress against this conviction has everything to do with the fact that my Father God loves me and that whatever way man might think of or treat me, Christ has redeemed me and is not only my savior and lord, but my brother under God. Christ has washed me clean of my many sins, and is also healing me of my damaged mind and body, and has given me some solace when I’ve been nothing but a coyote in a leg trap. Thank GOD He associates with the low and damaged or I would be beyond help. Perhaps PR is a lot less important than the glory to God of this association and accomplishment with those would need and love Him.

  3. No, Christ would have followed His Father’s will and perhaps healed the sinners in His love if they repented and accepted Him, but would not have celebrated or promoted sin. Love the sinner, hate the sin.

  4. Fantastic article.

  5. I once heard a preacher talking about racial issues. He said a black man’s heart would fit and work perfectly in a white man’s body. And a white man’s heart would work for a black man. He said God made us all out of dirt. Some dirt is white, some brown, some black, some red, some yellow….but we are all still dirt. I think if we get down to the lowest common denominator life/death, we have to face the fact there is no difference in people. However, how people act, that is what Jesus addresses. Who does He say I am? I’m broken. He’s the Healer. I’m prideful. He’s will bring me to humility. After all, all I am is dirt.

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