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The House of the Lord Church where Black Political Power was born and nurtured - Part One Hundred Eighteen


Jesus' Friends and Disciples

Next, look at the people who were attracted to Him — the common people, the winos, prostitutes, the outcasts, tax swindlers, zealots, revolutionaries. Is that kind of catering to and organizing of the outcast, misfits, radicals, and revolutionaries the efforts of a leader with no concern for structural change?

Among his inner circle there were some characters with rather shady backgrounds. Had they all been converted to an individual, other-worldly salvation living in peace and goodwill with Romans and their own countrymen? Or did they believe that Jesus was the Messiah who would restore the kingdom of Israel— a real, earthly, material, concrete kingdom? And if this was their thinking, did Jesus know it? Did he lead them on, or was he planning to fulfill their expectations?

Consider Judas Iscariot. Iscariot bears a striking resemblance to Sicarii, the word used by Josephus to identify the knife wielders, the dagger men who had developed a skill of killing people with daggers hidden in their sleeves.

It has been suggested that the only plausible reason for Judas' betrayal of Jesus was that Jesus was not militant enough. Jesus really intended to be peaceful. But if he, Judas, could force Jesus to act, Jesus surely would enjoin the battle and issue a call for the masses to join Him. Judas was a Zealot, and Zealots did not sell out to Romans for a few pieces of silver. On the contrary, they would die themselves, for nothing, if it meant promoting their cause.

Then there was Simon the Zealot, and James and John, the two firebrand brothers, called by Jesus the "sons of thunder." The term Boanerges from which "thunder" is translated, can also be translated "the fierce and wrathful ones." James and John, true to their nature, wanted to rain fire from heaven on a Samaritan village that denied passageway to Jesus (Luke 9:52-54). If they would burn up a people for so minimal act, what would they do to murderous Romans and treacherous Israelites. And these same brothers were ambitious too. They wanted the right and left hand on the throne.1 Additionally, the disciples carried swords too. On the night the authorities came for Jesus, Peter went for his piece and adroitly wacked the ear off the head of one of the policemen (Matthew 24:29-45). Granted, Jesus reattached the ear, but why did He allow Peter to pack the sword in the first place? Surely he knew Peter was packing. You cannot hide a sword as one might hide a switchblade. Did all of them carry swords? If so, what for? What would "turn the other cheek" disciples following a "go the extra mile" leader want with swords?

Ghettos of Nazareth

The place of Jesus' child-rearing, Nazareth, was a hell hole, a ghetto. No good thing ever came from Nazareth, went the proverb. Nazareth was a hotbed of revolutionary activity. There had been a Zealot uprising around 6 A.D. Jesus grew up in the knowledge of the heroics of the Zealots. Can a leader with that kind of background be inflexibly wedded to peaceful tactics? In the early years of His community there were attempts to eradicate class lines and to have everyone shared equitably. Was this socialism? Also, there was the removal of discrimination based on sex. Everyone was equal in Jesus' community (Acts 2:44,45). Was this a statement? Did Jesus know that to teach and to build an alternative community, where everyone was equal and shared all things equally, would automatically condemn social orders predicated upon class structures?

To be continued on Thursday, March 28, 2024.

Stay tuned for more updates from Herbert Daughtry Global Ministries.

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