- Guest Voices
Garry Wills: Jesus a ‘mystery,’ not a role model
Quinn: “You know, one of the things that fascinated me was when you talk about ‘what would Jesus do’? And then you say, how can it be true that human beings are supposed to pattern themselves after Jesus’ life? And he offers no paradigm for married people or parents since he was celibate and childless.
“Was he a family values model when he left his parents without telling them, and went off for days while they searched in anguish for him? Or when he refused to admit his mother when she asked to come into his company, and refused to attend his father’s funeral? I mean, I’ve always … I really have a problem with Jesus not being nice to his mother. (Laughter)
Wills: “Yeah, he’s not a role model. He’s a mystery. He’s something, as Justin said, he seems to be living in a higher weather system and he is. Unless he is of this tremendous mystery, he’s not really joining us as other than us, as God. He’s not the same as we are, and he’s not simply a role model.
“The funny thing is, some fundamentalists now have adopted what used to be the old humanistic reading of Jesus. ‘Oh, he was just a nice human, and we should imitate that.’ He wasn’t just a nice human. He was a very odd mystery of God and man. He’s not a role model in that sense, though people tried to make him that.”