JESUS or PLATO?

Learn from him
Learn from the humble King (Image source: Jesus.net)

 

This week, I am teaching my undergraduate class, The Allegory of the Cave, written by the Greek philosopher Plato. It is a short story on the value of learning, and promotes the virtue of using knowledge acquired from learning, to enlighten other members of society. Plato lived about 2500 years ago and was a very wise man.

In his book, THE REPUBLIC, Plato writes about justice and good government. He shared the idea that the best government will be a government ruled by philosophers, who have passed through at least 50 years of training to acquire knowledge, and to love truth. Plato believed that vast knowledge and education will produce good rulers.

Compare this with Jesus, who says in Matt. 11:28-30 (NLT): “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”  

Jesus teaches that finding rest and fulfillment comes from looking up to him, as wise teacher and humble King. This is the type of leader that Plato says the world needs for there to be justice and good government. While Plato believes we can train such leaders, the Bible teaches that only Jesus possesses such qualities.

The Bible also teaches that Jesus can impart his virtues into us as a farmer sows a seed into the ground; and over a period of time, through communion with him, the seed virtues will grow into mature behavioral character in us.

Lord, the world urgently needs Jesus type of leaders, loving-wise-humble-powerful, help us to see and to learn from Jesus, Amen!  

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