4/06/2011 | Share this article:By Carl S ~
Mary, Jesus’ mother:
“Yes, well, I guess you might say it all started with puberty. Rebelliousness, hyper-active, the know-it-all attitude. We tried to bring him up right, did the best we could. He even became something of a scriptural scholar.“
Naomi, the neighbor lady:
"Jesus started hanging out with the wrong crowd - prostitutes, a tax collector, some zealot trying to overthrow the Romans, stuff like that. Last week I found him talking to one of them Samaritan women. You know, the one with all those husbands, over there at the well. Disgraceful!"
Thomas, a friend:
"Sure, he was a good rabbinical student all right, but you can't trust him. Said he would honor all the scriptures, down to the crossing of the T's and dotting of I’s, and then he puts his own spin on them. Became a heretic, you know? And you know what happens to heretics, sooner or later."
Susanna, friend of Thomas:
"Uh-huh. He started acting weird; cursing fruit trees, saying he was driving devils into the neighbors' pets. If he knew some guy was rich, he’d tell him to get rid of all his stuff, and say stuff like, ‘Don’t let your right hand know what your left hand's doing.’ Duh! Or, ‘Whatever hand does the stealing, cut it off.’”
"Yeah, like one kid asked him how to get more holy, and Jesus told him to cut off his balls. Man he’s got a short temper!"
"I've listened to some of his made-up stories; couldn't make heads or tails of them. Maybe he was drunk. They say, "charismatic," but I say bullshit.
Rebecca, a neighbor:
"And all that changing the law stuff he came up with, like no more eye-for-eye, life-for-life. Nah, give your cloak away to the guy who's stealing your robe, and just forgive everyone. You know, shit like that won't make it. Just try and get that expensive robe away from him by asking. You’d have to just about kill him before that would happen. And you know how he has to have the very best hair oil."
"Poor Joseph. Jesus told him, ‘You can't tell me what to do! You‘re not my father!’ He said his real father‘s in heaven; and yet we know the guy's in the neighborhood.”
Rebecca to Naomi:
"Just between us, I never did like the way he hung about with the little kids. One day he told me that if anyone harmed one of the children, the guy should have a large stone on a rope bracelet around his neck, and be thrown in the river . . . unless the guy's clergy."
"Maybe he's been goody-two-shoes too long, you know? It's tough to look at a well-shaped, nubile virgin and suppress the thought you'd like to lay her. I mean, like, get real. That’ll mess a guy up, right there."
"And all that end of the world coming soon nonsense. Here we go again. Hell, I‘m just waiting for the end of Roman occupation. Let my people go, dude!”
"He never does wash his hands before returning to eat, either."
“We all love him though, with all his faults; like impatience, temper, intolerance for others’ opinions, sarcasm. Pompous ass, yes, but he means well. Like he told that woman, ‘Why do you call ME good? None is good but God.’”
"He said that? Gee, I thought we’re good, now he's got me worried. Oh yeah, we're supposed to be as perfect as God. He said that, too. Go figure."
“Take it easy walking that territory. You know how sensitive he is about being questioned. It’s bad enough he acts the way he does at home, with no respect for family. Oh, well, don’t fret. I’m sure he’ll outgrow these things like his brothers did. Teenagers! I can hardly wait for him to grow up. Besides, I’ve told him, ‘You can only push people so far, and then they won’t take it anymore.’ Just be patient. It’s all we can do.”
Guy in the neighborhood, overhearing conversation:
“I don’t know about that, Mary. I think the boy’s slick like his dad. He might just get away with his attitudes, whatever he does, a real con. Maudlin at times, going out and talking to himself. Maybe not strange, but different. Our only concern is that someone might use him for their own ends; pass him off as something he ain’t; some celebrity, as if anything he says means more than any other popular nutjob rattles on about. Course, they say if you’re handsome, you can do no wrong, and he’s already something of a teen idol. Hate to see fame go to his head. Bigger they are, harder they fall, and all that. Hope it never comes to where he’s a really big deal. Well, if it does, we’ll be around to set things straight".
“I’ll believe it when I see it. He’s too odd for anyone to take him seriously for too long. In the meantime, let’s see if we can do something about John, who Jesus loves.”
“Oh, I just don’t know! Sometimes I wonder if we’re right to just ignore the scriptural command to kill disobedient sons . . . maybe we’ll all be sorry for that someday.”