Friday, January 15, 2016

Two types of fools (jesus the jester)

In chapter 3 of Michael Frost's book 'Jesus the Fool: The Mission of the Unconventional Christ,' the author discusses two different types of fools. This chapter is named "Jesus the Jester." He begins:
"What do I mean by saying Jesus was a fool? There are two levels of meaning. The first is that by this world's standards of success, prestige, and influence, Jesus can be considered a failure, a misguided (though commendable) fool. the second level is the more provocative. It suggests that Jesus actually played the fool in order to enhance his ministry. I think both are true."
"The natural fool lacks the capacity to reason. He is a simpleton, naive and innocent. The artificial fool is the professional clown, the court jester. The artificial fool says, under the cover of comedy, the things others think, but would never dare utter."

***Peter Sellers movie, "Being There."

Towards the end of the chapter Frost shares his belief that the Gospel accounts of Jesus are "the best kept secrets in Christianity." He feels it has to do with the agenda with which we read the Bible...
"I've heard it said that in the southern US churches during the civil rights movement, this was glaringly apparent. On one tragic Sunday, in Birmingham, Alabama, someone threw a Molotov cocktail into the Sunday school of a black church. It was a senseless act of violence against innocent children and it sparked an outcry from both sides of the debate. One newspaper thought to survey all the churches of the city to find out what their preachers were using as the text for their sermon that particular morning. Without fail, all the white pastors were preaching from Paul and the black pastors were preaching from one or other of the Gospels. In other words, the white churches were dealing with heavy, philosophical/theological considerations. The black churches were looking at the details of Jesus' life and thought. Their agendas determined what parts of the Bible they looked at."

As you can see I did not highlight a lot from this chapter, but it was good nonetheless. I noted the Sellers movie because of an illustration used from it - and I would like to see the movie.

Once again, good stuff.