THE OBEDIENT SON
Jesus was obedient to the Heavenly Father. He was obedient to the extent that it included dying on a cross. I think there is something virtuous missing from our present understanding of obedience. His perfect obedience makes him ‘other’ than us. Are we afraid that a dedication to obedience will make us ‘other’ than status quo and perhaps less of our own person?
Obedience is the carrying out of a command. It is doing what you are told to do. We may picture a military man barking orders or an angry boss harassing you complete difficult work in an unrealistic time frame.
If that is the context in which obedience belongs, we must de-individualize in order to comply. The soldier learns to respond immediately to instructions from a superior officer. There is no questioning and no reasonable alternative.
Is there another picture of obedience? Was Jesus obedient to the Father like a private to a sergeant? Did Jesus bite his tongue and act timid like a teenage driver being pulled over by the police?
If we are willing to look further, there can be command and authority deeply rooted in love. To obey such authority may come out of loyalty and agreement with the one issuing an order. How often do we avoid obedience for fear of being lorded over?