Do bumper stickers say a lot about a person? Bumper stickers on your car could say a lot about what you believe and what is important to you. In this episode, Jeff ponders, “If people in the 1st century would have had stickers on their donkeys, what would some of those have said?”
Snippet from the Show
Be doers of the Word and not just hearers.
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In order to tell others who they were, Jews attached tassels to the edge of their garments. You can read about this in Numbers 15:37-41:
The Lord said to Moses: Speak to the Israelites and tell them that throughout their generations they are to make tassels for the corners of their garments, fastening a violet cord to each corner. When you use these tassels, the sight of the cord will remind you of all the commandments of the Lord and you will do them, without prostituting yourself going after the desires of your hearts and your eyes. Thus you will remember to do all my commandments and you will be holy to your God. I, the Lord, am your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt to be your God: I, the Lord your God.
Bumper Stickers: Yes or No?
Bumpers can say a lot about you and it is a form of communication to others. So before putting a bumper sticker on your car, ask yourself the following questions
- Is the message on your bumper sticker, the truth?
- Is the message on your bumper sticker going to get you run off the road in road rage?
- Are you able to defend what you are purporting or is it just an idea?
- Does this idea or thing on your bumper sticker really stand for you as a disciple of Jesus?
- Would Jesus, Mary or Joseph put the bumper sticker on their donkey?
1st Century “Donkey Stickers”
Instead of bumper stickers, what if people in the 1st century had donkey stickers? Imagine with Jeff what kind of stickers, Mary, Elizabeth and others may have had.
My Son Is God
Perhaps, Mary’s donkey sticker would have said “My Son is God.” Read the Scripture below to understand why this probably would have been perfect for Mary’s donkey.
“Philip said to him, “Lord, show us the Father, and we shall be satisfied.” Jesus said to him, “Have I been with you so long, and yet you do not know me, Philip? He who has seen me has seen the Father; how can you say, ‘Show us the Father? Do you not believe that I am in the Father and the Father in me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on my own authority; but the Father who dwells in me does his works” (John 14:8-10).
The Council of Ephesus, in modern day Turkey, was a council of Catholic Bishops who convened in Ephesus in Turkey. In 431 AD the Roman Emperor, Theodosius II convened the council, the third of its kind. The goal was to reach a consensus in the church regarding just the question of Jesus’ divinity. At the time, Nestorius was teaching that the Virgin Mary ought to be called the Christotokos, “Christ-bearer,” instead of the Theotokos, “God-bearer.” The council met for two months, and concluded that Mary is the Theotokos.
Perhaps, on Paul’s donkey there would be a sticker that said “Coexist.” Here is what Paul taught in Galatians 3:27-29:
“For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ’s, then you are Abraham’s offspring, heirs according to promise.”
I Love You
What about Jesus’ donkey? Maybe the sticker on Jesus’ donkey would have simply said “I love you.” There is nothing that could communicate Jesus’ relationship with the world like, “I love you!” Over and over in the Scriptures, we are told that Jesus loved us so much that he gave his life for us.
It seems right that the disciples may have all had the same “donkey stickers.” Perhaps, they all would have said “Got covenant?” With the new movement they were a part of, the question was pondered, “What would bond them together?” They needed something more than just rules. They needed a covenant.
BONUS: Make Disciples Not War
There is one more “donkey sticker” that would have been very fitting for Paul. It would be a sticker that says “Make Disciples Not War.” To understand the fittingness of this, read Ephesians 6:12-18 below:
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces_ of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore, take up the full armor of God, that you may be able to resist in the evil day, and having done everything, to stand firm. Stand firm therefore, having girded your loins with truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the Gospel of peace; in addition to all, taking up the shield of faith with which you will be able to extinguish all the flaming missiles of the evil one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.”
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Meet Your Host: Jeff Cavins
Jeff Cavins is passionate about helping people understand Scripture and become disciples of Jesus Christ. Though he was born Catholic, Jeff went to Bible school and served as a protestant minister for twelve years before reverting to the Catholic Faith. Jeff then received his MA in Theology from Franciscan University of Steubenville. Since then, he has become a leading Catholic evangelist and author.
Jeff created The Bible Timeline learning system, which revolutionized Catholic Bible Study for millions of Catholics. Since its introduction, Jeff has developed The Great Adventure series of Bible studies to help people better understand Sacred Scripture and its meaning for their lives.