Jesus as the Master Teacher

As the master teacher, Jesus used a variety of methods and presentation styles but His course content was consistent; whether by parable, teaching, or preaching His message was the Kingdom of God.

Jesus knew who He was speaking to and used examples that were at His audience’s level. With the crowds, He spoke parables using examples that they saw every day. Yeast in flour, marriage feasts, and sowing crops are examples of things He used in parables to illustrate the Kingdom of God. His parables could be taken on multiple levels of understanding but I think the meanings were always hidden because Jesus wanted people to ask questions. Isaiah had talked about this fact when he said that they would be “ever hearing but never understanding”; just because you enjoy a story does not mean that you understand the symbolism and metaphors that are written into it by the author.  With the leaders, His meanings were still veiled but they knew when he was talking about them; the example here is the Good Shepherd vs. the hired help.

He used current events as part of His teaching like when he talked about the tower that fell or when Pilate mixed pigs’ blood into the sacrifice.

Jesus used various strategies for where He was and whom He wanted to reach. He talked to massive crowds, small groups, and even one-on-one when the people or persons needed that in order for His message of the Kingdom to be gotten out and understood.  He would launch a discussion question like, “Who do the people say I am” or He would ask a question and patiently wait for an answer like when the woman was about to be stoned for adultery. (Of course, that could be Him as a Master Judge also.)

He had chosen the disciples they got special treatment. He would explain parables to them but He knew that He would have to send the Holy Spirit (re-teach) because they were not progressing fast enough. They got quantity and quality time with Jesus and I think He even gave them tests. If I may, the teaching that God can provide was the feeding of the five thousand and their test was the feeding of the four thousand. (see Test Revisited)

The picture was taken at Houston Baptist University.

Christmas Trivia

Now for some Christmas trivia questions!

 1. Was Jesus actually born in December?

No, because just like now shepherds are not “in the field keeping watch over their flocks at night” in December – it is too cold.  What is really important is not when we celebrate but that He was born and that the world celebrates Jesus with us.

2. How many wise men were there?

We do not really know. Tradition holds to three wise men and we have even given them names.  I think we have concluded that there were three because there were three gifts.

3. When did the wise men show-up?

Probably two years after the actual birth. In the book of Matthew the wise men find Mary and the baby in a house not in a stable.  Also Herod killed all the baby boys two years old and under because that is the “time” that the wise men gave Herod.

4. Is Jesus a grandson of Solomon?

No, Mary’s lineage that is listed in the book of Luke goes back to David’s son Nathan (Luke 3:31,32). However, both Mary and Joseph do have Zerubbabel in their lineage.  Zerubbabel is the governor of Israel that is responsible for rebuilding the Temple – see Haggai, Zechariah and Ezra.  There is an interesting reference in Zechariah 12:12 about the family of David and Nathan.

5. Jesus is our High Priest but how could He be a priest if He is not in the line of Aaron?

This may be a stretch but please follow long. Mary went to go visit Elizabeth her “cousin.” Elizabeth had to be in the line of Aaron in order to be married to Zechariah, who was behind the curtain in the Temple when the angel visited him; so Mary was related to Aaron probably on her Mom’s side.  The scripture that backs this up is in Zechariah 6:9 -15 especially verses 12 + 13.

So have a very Merry Christmas and in the words of Tiny Tim, “God bless us ever one!”