Tuesday, September 01, 2009

The Real Jesus

From Blog09


Give me no garage-sale Jesus,
    Pasted onto kitsch
    That matches my decor.
Give me the real Jesus--
    God and sweat,
    Mercy and fire.

Give me no corporation Jesus,
    Carefully groomed,
    Packaged in hypo-allergenic plastic.
Give me the real Jesus--
    God's pure image
    Dining with prostitutes.

Give me no philosophy-class Jesus,
    Limned in lofty phrases
    Signifying nothing.
Give me the real Jesus--
    Speaking God's deep truths
    In simple images.

Give me no politically-correct Jesus,
    Founded on fads,
    Sketchy on sin.
Give me the real Jesus--
    Convicted criminal
    Bearing my sin, not his.

Give me that Jesus, the real Jesus--
    Or no, don't.
    Already I'm his; he's mine.

Jesus told him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me."
--John 14:6 HCSB

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
--Hebrews 13:8

Notes:
The photo is of a Bible from the year 1895. It's been re-bound and is still useful. How many science books of 1895 are still useful?
The phrase "garage-sale Jesus" is not original with me, but I found it striking.


Photo and poem ©2009 James L. Swindle. You may print up to 100 copies, provided that you include the copyright notice, you don't alter the text of the poem, and you don't sell them.

8 comments:

Myra said...

Thank you for your comment on God's voice thundering.

I like this photo with the water droplets traveling down the material.

Do you write a poem every day?

Jim Swindle said...

Thanks, Myra.

No, I don't write a poem every day. I may write two or three on the same day, then none for a week or more. Sometimes I write part of one and then come back and finish it a day later or months later. I may think, "I wonder whether I could write a poem about ____" and then the answer is either yes or no. After reading your comment about the thunder of silence, I wrote a poem about that idea, but am not satisfied with it yet.

Ρωμανός ~ Romanós said...

Jim, this is a powerful poem, and I'd like to post it on my blog. May I do that, showing your copyright line?

Also, there seems to be a typo: "Limned in lofty phrases…"

What is that first word supposed to be, "lined" or "limed"?

Jim Swindle said...

Romanós, you're always welcome to use anything of mine from this blog, without asking further, on your blog. I do appreciate the copyright note, mainly so that if some publisher ever wants to publish these poems, the publisher can maybe make a profit.

I think ¨limned¨is the word I wanted. If you want, put an asterisk and a definition. To "limn" something is to make a drawing or a painting of it, or to portray it in words. (See Dictionary.com.)

Meanwhile, "limed" would give another whole interesting range of meaning...I think of quick-lime. It's an interesting thought, maybe appropriate, but not what I'd intended.

Thanks, brother, for your encouragement.

Ρωμανός ~ Romanós said...

It is indeed humbling to realise that logothete Romanos has never heard of the word limn. Bravo! for introducing me to a new word! Thanks for letting me post this great poem.

Jim Swindle said...

Well, Romanós, I'd never heard of "logothete." You can out-Greek me any day. :-)

Ρωμανός ~ Romanós said...

What a friend you are to me. I thank God for you every day.

Jim Swindle said...

I'm humbled.