For us to even allow the idea of ministers is to negate the sacrifice of Jesus. Jesus came to do away with all boundaries and all hierarchies. In Jesus, we are all equal, all blessed, all worthy.
It is like if you are arrested. The police officer will read you your rights, which include not talking unless an attorney is present. He will then ask you if you understand your rights. The moment after you say yes, he will start asking you questions.
So you answer. He’s an authority figure, and you have nothing to hide, right? But part of the Miranda rights state that anything you say can and will be used against you. But you talk anyway. And you get in trouble, because your words are taken out of context. You would have been better off staying silent.
We give away the power that Jesus gave us when we let ourselves be led by ministers. When we allow a division of us and them, of lay and ordained, we are ignoring the very essence of Jesus’ sacrifice.
Jesus came to remove all boundaries between us and God. Jesus came to set us free from all the guilt that we’ve been given all of our lives, where we’ve been told we aren’t good enough, aren’t worthy enough – basically that we aren’t enough, period. We have been told over and over that whatever we do, whoever we are, it isn’t enough and we need to do more.
We are told this in every facet of our lives. We are told this not only about our relationship with God but our relationship with the world, with each other, with ourselves. We are told that we’ll never measure up. If we just dress better, listen to the right music, get another degree, date the right person, we’ll get there – except when we get there we are told that we are still lacking and we need to try harder.
Jesus tells us that we are there already.
Jesus tells us that we are perfect like we are.
We don’t need an intermediary. To allow anyone to be over us other than God is to ignore the whole reason Jesus came and died.
It is way past time to rethink church and what it means and how it looks and how it works. This is part of why I write this blog. I know I’m not alone in this feeling. But it is hard to undo and remake something as basic as our idea of church. In part, I’m stripping it down to the basics. What did Jesus say? What did Jesus teach? What did church look like? What didn’t it look like? What are we doing right? What are we doing wrong?
It is all a feeling-out-in-the-dark kind of thing. Yet I feel that this is better than blindly following someone who it turns out is also blindly following someone. I think our souls are too precious to place in the care of a person. And I think that isn’t what Jesus wanted.