What Made Jesus So Popular?

It might be worthwhile to take a moment and consider what were the characteristics of Jesus that drew people to him.  Of course, today we have television, movies, the Internet, but not back then, 2000 years ago.

Let’s first dismiss a few things —  It was not wealth or money.  Jesus came from a very modest family, with very modest means.  Some would even say poor.  It was not His good looks, for the Bible clearly says he was not handsome, or one that would be desired.

Now we get to the miracles.  And it is true, miracles brought a great crowd together and helped Jesus gain fame.  But, what did the person on the street find attractive in Jesus?  After all, not everyone was seeking miracles.

  1. Jesus treated everyone with respect and dignity.  In a time when it was common to treat Samaritans or women as second-rate citizens Jesus treated everyone fairly.
  2. Jesus was a good listener.  People are so smart today, no one needs to listen anymore.
  3. Jesus didn’t condemn or judge people.  He talked to them, not as their judge or ruler, but as a friend.
  4. Jesus was accessible.  Anyone who wanted to could come talk to Him.  There were no special admission rules.

These are not common traits.  But, fortunately, you don’t have to be born with them, either.  They can be learned.  You can train yourself in these attributes.  No, it’s not easy, and practice makes perfect.

Of course, the goal is not to become popular.  The goal is to be attractive to people so we can win them to the Lord.  But winning them doesn’t always mean preaching to them or telling them what they are doing wrong.  In brief, winning them means being their friend first.  When Jesus walked the Earth anyone could be His friend.  I don’t think it has changed since then…

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