How are we supposed to become more like Jesus?

Redpillboomer asks:

The thing with Jesus is that He is the perfect man. I believe all of what we talk about on this blog concerning masculinity is tied up in Him in some way or the other. The difficulty I have with Jesus as a role model for me is exactly what am I to emulate in Him? The closest I can get is to let His Spirit work in me over time (sanctification), and gradually I begin to look more like Him, but always an imperfect version of Him and the process (towards sanctification) is a bit mysterious to me. It just seems to show up over time as I put the time in getting to know Him and endeavor to walk with Him, however imperfectly.

I will say, over the Easter season I watched two programs, The Chosen and The Passion of Christ, and I thought the actors did a good job portraying Christ. Good in that I could relate to Him more in his physical presence on earth and his masculine presence in general; however, still, even in the actor portrayals, Jesus always maintains frame, like he ALWAYS knows how to show up POWERFULLY PERFECT in any given situation, I admire that in Him so greatly; but me be like that? Good luck, not this side of heaven is it going to happen.

I seem to be able to relate more to Biblical characters that have strong masculine traits and corresponding weaknesses about them. It’s like, “I recognize that trait in me too.” I like King David’s resilience and patience with letting God work things out and not trying to force outcomes, I can relate to that and attempt to emulate it. And, what man cannot empathize with David when he sees Bathsheba bathing? Of course what he subsequently did was totally wrong, aka sin, but being mesmerized by a naked beauty and lusting for her, “Yep, I can relate to that one alright.” So David, even though he’s a larger than life figure in so many ways, his masculinity is relatable to in many ways as well.

So, maybe relating to some sort of composite picture of masculinity in the Biblical men is a possible way to get at the question I originally posed, “So what exactly does a man respected by other men look like?”

I totally get this. A good analogy may be meeting an expert in a sport or certain field today when you’re just a beginner in that field. They just know soooo much more than you and have been in that field so long that it seems overwhelming and you cannot compare at all. Then you realize that we’re supposed to emulate God/Jesus who is literally way above any human expert.

What has worked for me personally is focusing on incremental improvement. I was not really a fan of the proliferation of “What would Jesus do?” especially since most of the Christians who parroted it didn’t have an accurate picture of who Jesus was (e.g. feel good nice guy). However, seeing how Jesus didn’t fall for verbal tricks and kept focusing on His mission and showing fruits of the Spirit while calling out hypocrisy is a much broader but simpler thing we can all do.

I think the biggest thing that most men aren’t doing is making God’s mission for us paramount. How are we living that out everyday of our lives? It’s easy to get sucked into life and get busy and ignore making disciples and evangelizing or not using our spiritual gifts. Most Christian men (and women) for that matter would do well to actually write down a mission statement and then taking logical and practical steps to follow that.

That’s the biggest thing with Jesus that stands out to me: He was always on His father’s business no matter if He was with the Pharisees, people who needed healing, crowds, His disciples, in foreign lands and foreign peoples, with authority figures, and whoever else. He found a way to have those spiritual conversations that hit to the heart, even when others were trying to distract Him with worldly things.

The Biblical characters and associating with the traits also appears to be like the Catholic and Orthodox ‘veneration’ of the Saints. It can be hard to say to emulate Jesus, but many of the saints despite their flaws were good with certain virtues that they are known for. We can try to emulate those in our lives.

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13 Responses to How are we supposed to become more like Jesus?

  1. Pingback: » How are we supposed to become more like Jesus?

  2. Rock Kitaro says:

    I grew up with the notion of being “Christ-like”…and by time I read the entire Bible, I acknowledge the impossibility Red Pill Boomer described. Instead…like Deep Strength mentions, there are traits you start to pick up, almost like walking away from a campfire warmer than before you stopped by. For me, the biggest one was his ability to forgive…which was superhuman, no doubt. I don’t want to bust out in a long soliloquy about this, but being more forgiving and trusting in God that justice will ultimately prevail…that was huge for me.

  3. Oscar says:

    RK,

    You are one inspiring dude. I just want you to know that.

  4. Bardelys the Magnificent says:

    *The Imitation of Christ*. That is all.

  5. Brian81 says:

    Brilliantly written, and yes… I can relate.

  6. Maniac says:

    The fact is, we’re never going to attain sinless perfection in these bodies and in this world. But God will improve and refine us with time as long as we stay grounded in His word.

  7. jorgen says:

    Jesus was a monk, so “what would Jesus do?” in the realm of sexuality is “be a monk.” So he doesn’t work as a role model for a man seeking to be a father This is just a simple fact. In fact there is no New Testament character who work as that role model! None or them was a father (Joseph doesn’t count, mor Cleopas because we know nothing about them). Paul, Peter etc. and even John the Baptist were all monks. Its a religion for monks that has been irrationally extended to non-monks and that’s why it doesn’t work in the realm of sexuality. Monks easily take the position that divorce is bad and men should be punished for it (hence all the absurd positions on divorce in the NT and Christianity generally which don’t prevent divorce but just make women initiate it instead and steal men’s livelihoods). For role models of fathers and for rational divorce law you’ll have to look to the OT instead.

  8. Oscar says:

    @ jorgen

    Jesus was a monk

    No, Jesus is the Lamb of God, who takes away the sins of the world (John 1:29), and He is God incarnate (Isaiah 9:6-7). No monk can fill that role.

    So he doesn’t work as a role model for a man seeking to be a father This is just a simple fact.

    Did you read the part where one of His names is Everlasting Father? Are you a father?

    Paul, Peter etc. and even John the Baptist were all monks.

    Peter was married. You don’t know what you’re talking about.

    Its a religion for monks that has been irrationally extended to non-monks and that’s why it doesn’t work in the realm of sexuality.

    You still don’t know what you’re talking about.

    For role models of fathers and for rational divorce law you’ll have to look to the OT instead.

    Sure, there are role models of fathers in the Old Testament, which is good, especially since the Old Testament is Christian, and points towards Christ (John 5:39-47, Luke 24:25-27). But, since the Old Testament points towards Christ, and Christ is God incarnate, and God incarnate told you to not get divorced, then to disobey that law is to disobey God.

    Good luck with that.

  9. Oscar says:

    1 Corinthians 9:5 Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?

    John 1:42 And he brought him to Jesus. Now when Jesus looked at him, He said, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas” (which is translated, A Stone).

    Matthew 8:14 Now when Jesus had come into Peter’s house, He saw his wife’s mother lying sick with a fever. 15 So He touched her hand, and the fever left her. And she arose and served them.

  10. @ Oscar

    Nice responses.

  11. Pingback: » How are we supposed to become more like Jesus? Deep Strength

  12. Pingback: A Summary of Faux-Masculine Archetypes | Σ Frame

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