Will the Real Jesus Please Stand Up
“Hello everybody! And welcome to our show, ‘The People’s Choice’. So glad you could join us here, and it’s going to be a good one today, as we have with us here three potential prophets, or messiahs if you will, all competing for the grand title of “The One and Only Real Jesus”. It’s something we’ve been meaning to get to. We’ve received your requests and letters and e-mails and haven’t ignored them, so I’m happy that we could finally get it done! This promises to be a real interesting day folks, and we do have a lot to cover, so let’s get right to “The People’s Choice!”
“Okay now, our first contestant here this morning, most of you already know or have probably seen around somewhere. As He comes up on stage, you can see that He stands over six feet tall, thin, and with long flowing brown hair—long, which is in itself impressive, considering those ancient lands and the accepted social customs in those days of men having short hair—and as you can see it’s also quite soft-looking and well-tended— which is also quite remarkable, considering the dry air and the sweltering heat during the days and nights. Impressive indeed! Please turn around if you will sir, and show the people how it so naturally flows outward….Good, good, thank you, that was nice. We appreciate it.
“As you can no doubt see folks, He is naked from the waist up, and those six-pack abs are something to envy aren’t they? All that from just walking around? Wonderful! But careful ladies, don’t get too worked up. He may not be available for that kind of love!
“Yes, that’s a golden halo above His head, the yellow glow somewhat identical to the ones that Invictus and Helios wore on our last show when they competed—you all remember that one, don’t you folks? Well, that’s okay. Nothing wrong with a rehashing of old symbols. He’s not the first I’m sure, and those men they borrowed it from another as well…
“And His face? Well, He certainly looks like something from a Botticelli painting. Or He could’ve been painted by the great Italian painter Raphael himself!… And yes He’s crying—that gentle sadness marring an otherwise perfect image.
“He can usually be found in churches across America, usually hanging around or standing alone perhaps. And in other cultures, He takes on their physical traits, so that they can identify with Him a bit better. Oh, I almost forgot. Sorry about that. He is usually referred to as the ‘Resurrected Christ’.
“Thank you sir, and if you will, please take a seat and we’ll talk shortly.
“Okay now…our second contestant for today, coming all the way from…well, here actually, from the lands of the Americas and the surrounding areas, please give a big round of applause and welcome to the one and only ‘White Robed God of the Natives’!
“This contestant goes by different names and travels different areas depending on who you ask, but one thing is for sure folks: He has the power and ideas you’d expect from a messiah! Walking on water, healing the sick and injured, teaching of love for one another and for the earth, and command over the natural elements. He wears the traditional white robe of office, and on His face is a beard—odd that is, seeing as how the natives didn’t have facial hair…but the beard signifies perhaps wisdom or old age maybe. Either way folks, He makes a striking image now doesn’t He?
“This contestant stands out from the first one though, in a unique and very special way—He foretold of His eventual return! Not bad, eh? He said, at a time when the world would so sorely need Him, He would return and lift the people to greater glory. What can be better than that, I ask? There’s nothing quite like a prophesy to help keep us focused and hopeful!
“As you can see for yourself, His image seems undetermined even now. Height? —Unknown. Specific physical appearance? —Unknown. But He’s there I guarantee it, and not just in that wavering white-robed bearded image. You can sort of sense Him there, even though it’s kind of hard to pinpoint the exact location. He seems to be shifting from place to place but His spirit’s always there, and that’s what really matters now, doesn’t it folks!
“Thank you sir for being such a good sport, and if you will, please take a seat over there with the other kind gentleman waiting and we’ll talk to you all later…
“And now folks, we have a special treat ….our last contestant…here to claim the title of “The One and Only Jesus’, hailing all the way from the holy lands of the Middle East, please give a warm and hearty welcome to…..Jesus the Christ!…
“….Umm….I can see by your sudden silence and shocked faces that you weren’t expecting Him to look so plain and ordinary, huh? Well folks, that’s just it—He is plain and ordinary, just like anyone else! His height, as you can see, barely over five feet, pretty much typical for that time and place. And His hair? Yes that’s right, it’s short. And as dry as…well, wool, actually. The heat and hot air in those arid lands, as well as His dark skin—it’s often quite hot over there where He comes from and it’s perfectly normal to look that way. Normal and ordinary. Common. That’s how He looks.
“But folks, don’t count this one out just yet—He has some amazing powers and abilities at his command! Why, He even healed a blind man once they say, and brought a friend back from death! Amazing! And yes, He does share some similarities with our second contestant, walking on water, the ability to heal, the prophesy-bit, and preaching love for one another and being meek. I said ‘meek’, folks, not weak…Meek.
“This one here before you though–why, even now He was able to push forward from the crowd of others back there who wanted to come out in His place. They’re backstage if you want to talk with them later, but for now, see what stands before you—an ordinary and common-looking man, dressed plainly in a brown and worn robe, leather sandals on His dirty feet, and smelling of fish and old bread. Quite ordinary and human, wouldn’t you say? But folks, wait to you hear what He has to say. You are going to love it, I guarantee it!
“We’ll be talking to Him and all the others in a few moments, but for now let’s all give a good round of applause for Jesus the Christ! He deserves it folks, for coming all this way.
“Okay. We’re going to take a quick short break and get ready for the Question-and-Answer round, so don’t go anywhere. This next part’s something you don’t want to miss!
“And now…a word from our local Sponsor.”