Was Jesus really a Great Teacher?

Posted: February 17, 2011 in Uncategorized
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Many people refer to Jesus as the “Greatest Teacher Ever.” Is that really true? Here is my definition of a teacher’s job: to explain, teach, reveal, unravel, or simplify. Basically, a teacher takes what ever curriculum they have and attempt to impart knowledge of that curriculum in a way that can be understood by their students. Good teachers will use clear and effective speech for their intended audience. As far as the body of Christ is concerned, the Biblical office of a teacher is quite important and is actually listed before miracle workers(1 Cor12:28). A teacher is responsable for sound doctrine. While a preacher proclaims, a teacher will explain. It is the preaching and teaching of the Word that gives birth to right believing, which leads to right living. Apparently God holds the ministry of this office high enough, that he attaches this warning: My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgement (James3:1). Now back to the original question. Was Jesus a great teacher?

Jesus said, “Unless you eat of My flesh and drink of My blood..”  “For My flesh is food indeed and My blood is drink indeed” (Jn6:53). That was hard for His Disciples to understand. Did Jesus explain it? No, in fact He let many of them walk away. All throughout His earthly ministry, he would say some of the craziest sounding stuff without offering an explanation to the crowds he was speaking to. “If your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off!” When Jesus stood in front of the multitudes, He spoke in parables. When He was done, the disciples would ask Jesus to explain to them the true meaning.  His disciples finally asked Him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” Jesus replied in Luke 8:10: “To you it has been given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God, but to the rest it is given in parables,” that “Seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.” Now wait a minute, did the Teacher just say He spoke in parables so that they would not understand? The answer is Yes. Is that the duty of a teacher? As far as the multitude was concerned, was He being a good teacher?

Near the end of Jesus’ ministry, He said to His Disciples, “These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; but the time is coming when I will no longer speak in figurative language, but I will tell you plainly about the Father.” His disciples said to Him, “See, now You are speaking plainly, and using no figure of speech! Now we are sure that you know all things, and have no need that anyone should question You. By this we believe You came forth from God.”(Jn 16:25,29)  Jesus spoke in parables to fulfill prophesy of Isaiah concerning the Jews. Jesus had to fulfill the law given to the Jews. He said many times that He was sent for the lost sheep of Israel, and that His bread was for the children, not the Gentiles. However, God, in His infinite wisdom perfectly devised a way for the rest of us to be grafted into the family. If Jesus spoke plainly, and the Jews had accepted Him with open arms, the Gentiles would have been left out to dry so to speak. Instead, “God has given them a spirit of stupor, eyes that they should not see and ears that they should not hear”(Rom 11:8) “But through their fall, to provoke them to jealousy, salvation has come to the Gentiles.” Take note that God gave them their chance by giving them the oracles of God, and plenty of prophesy concerning the coming Messiah.

Even though Jesus came for the Jews first, right before He was arrested, He revealed the heart of the Father. John 17:20 “I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word.” That is a direct reference to the rest of us. That is why Jesus explained or “properly taught” His disciples. He knew the Holy Spirit would inspire them to record the true meanings of His parables. Further still, He spoke of the promise of the Helper-the Spirit of truth-the Comforter- the Holy Spirit that would guide us into all truth, and “take of what is Mine and declare it to you.” John 14:26 “But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.” Now,the Holy Spirit is our Greatest teacher. Jesus could only give one sermon on one mound at any given time. Now God can flow through every Spirit-filled believer simultaneously. It truly was to our advantage that Jesus went to the Father so that the Holy Spirit could be given. Dive into His Word, and let Him teach you new truths and give you fresh revelations!

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