Teaching Like Jesus

From Dave Black Online:

I’ve been teaching for some 33 years now. Still hard to believe. I’m finding that only when I am like Jesus can I be an effective teacher. He was gentle yet forceful when necessary. He could be tough or tender. His life perfectly blended grace and grit. He must have been an arresting communicator. The people of Nazareth were amazed at the graciousness of His speech (Luke 4:22). At all times He spoke with great authority (Matt. 7:29). He was a man of solid convictions. He spoke from personal knowledge (I can’t see Him using crib notes) in stark contrast to the teachers of His day. Although He had no formal rabbinical training, He showed no timidity or hesitation as to what He had to say.

Simple, charming, direct, authoritative — how attractive His teaching must have been! He’s my model of a great teacher. But here’s a question. What did He teach? That is, what was the substance of His teaching? The answer can only be the kingdom of God — men and women ruled over by God and thereby finding the real meaning of life. He came to bring God to us and us to God. Christianity is in its final and ultimate analysis the acceptance of God’s rule in our lives.

I’m trying to say that teachers have both a model and a method in Jesus. This was perhaps the most difficult thing for me to learn in my career as a professor. For many years most of my teaching was a pale shadow of the radical kingdom announced by Jesus. By the grace of God, I’m determined to change that. I’d appreciate your prayers — I’m not naive. I recognize this is spiritual warfare. I encourage all of us teachers to follow Jesus’ example in all that we do and say.