FLORY REPLOGLE, REV. SHAWN
Last weekend I wore my t-shirt emblazoned with the message "When Jesus said..." across it, to the Kansas State Fair. I was curious to see if I got any responses. No one said anything to me about it all day... except for the ticket taker just inside the entry gate. Sincerely, and even a little quietly, she said, "Nice shirt."
In a world full of so-called religious literalists (Christian, Muslim, Jewish, etc.), where picking and choosing the scriptural texts that "I have decided are the best to take literally" is an art,the phrase "When Jesus said..." reminds us to be rooted in the life (teachings), death, and resurrection of Jesus. If we're going to play the literalist game, we might best start with Jesus, and we often don't because it is right at the foot of the non-violent, power-shedding cross where we are challenged the most.
Why be challenged when it's much easier legislate our way through the scriptures?