by Jonathan Bailey
Jesus was a Rabbi. You need to know that. If we are going to take Jesus seriously again we are going to have to see Him as a Teacher or Rabbi. As students of Jesus we must commit ourselves to understanding the Jewish culture of Palestine during His time. This acknowledgement and knowledge will give us the ability to read the teachings of Jesus with new lenses. Lenses make all the difference. With the correct lenses we see the details. Details are so important. At the age of thirteen I received my first pair of glasses. As I left the optometrist at our local mall, I remember remarking to my mom, “Look at the leaves on the trees!” Evidently for some years my vision had slowly been detioritating and I was losing my focus to see details. But because it was occurring slowly I was not able to detect a change. Apparently I thought trees were big oblong blocks of green. Weird, huh? To be honest, before I knew about Jesus being a Rabbi, I felt like the red words I read in the gospels were more like red oblong blurs than mysterious life giving teachings. This new feeling of seeing details gave me a new perspective on life and my surroundings. I now loved to look at intricate things and marvel at the complexity. It was almost like I was seeing things for the first time.
This can happen with Jesus.
Knowing Jesus was a Rabbi gives you the same attention to detail we need as His students. It is at this point that we begin to understand His teachings and in His words, we have “eyes to see, and ears to hear.” We read, we listen, and we apply everything Jesus says. Thus we apprentice ourselves to the Master.