Jesus: The Dawn Of A New Jerusalem.

751 words - 3 pages

The rabbi Immanuel Ben Joseph, commonly known as Jesus of Nazareth, regarded by many of his day as, "Israel's finest teacher" came as one sent on a mission from God. His modus operandi: to birth a new ethic of behavior in a pious, ethnocentric culture. Jerusalem was the epicenter of an exclusivist society and religion, melded into its national setting (Israel) to its very core, and planted in the context of an oppressive Roman rule. Jesus' work was to reverse much of what had become the norm of the day, representatively embodied in the Temple, Mosaic Law (Torah) and Sanhedrin. These were the symbols of an authority, society and religion that had, in many ways, become hypocritical and corrupt. Jesus' new socio-ethic standard of behavior was encapsulated in what he held to be the "Two Greatest Commandments," which were to "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength," and to, "love your neighbor as yourself."What then, one may ask, was Jesus' means of spreading this message and implementing this new ethic of reform? As a radical prophet, teacher and worker of miracles Jesus astounded all those who came into contact with him. He outlines his vision summarily in his quotation of Isaiah 61:1&2, "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind, to release the oppressed, to proclaim the year of the Lord's favor" (Lk 4:18.) This apparently ambiguous statement not only alludes to his physical healing of the sick, blind, and lame, the exorcising of evil spirits from the demonically oppressed, but also alludes to the ethical nature of his work.Jesus came to heal a blindness that was evident primarily in religious practices taught by the teachers of the Law, upheld by Jewish authorities (i.e., temple priests and the Sanhedrin) and that permeated every facet of society. The sick, leprous, lame, blind and demonically oppressed were alienated from society, labeled outcasts, in part because of the debilitating effect of their own illnesses (hence they were "captives") and also, in part, due to Temple purity laws that excluded them from...

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