‘What would Jesus do?‘ seems like an innocent question to ask, but it is impossible to answer literally and does not reflect the teaching of the New Testament. As Christians we are not called to do what Jesus did (or what we might think he would do if he were in our shoes) but to do what he tells us to do — to obey his commands, not to copy his actions (unless, of course, that is what he tells us to do!) We must resist the temptation to turn Jesus into the first Christian, or as some translations of Hebrews 12:2 put it, the ‘pioneer’ of our faith. A Christian is a sinner saved by grace, which Jesus was not. His life was lived in a different context and had a different purpose from anything that our life could ever have. He is not a man who discovered a new relationship with God that he is now sharing with us, but our Saviour and Lord, and we must respect that essential difference. What he was capable of is not possible for us because we are still sinners, and must continue to depend on him for the grace we need to live the life he wants us to live.
To claim to be able to copy the actions of the historical Jesus (or guess what he would do if he were alive today and do the same) is to claim to be in a state of sinless perfection, which is a lie.
Gerald Bray, Article 15: Of Christ alone without Sin in The Faith We Confess: An Exposition of the Thirty-Nine Articles (London, UK: The Latimer Trust, 2009), 86.
It is very easy for us to buy into popular memes without carefully thinking through what they actually mean (no matter how well-intentioned they are.) I just discovered that there are many others phrases like P.U.S.H., G.O.L.F., F.R.O.G…. etc. (Try to guess or go google them.) You know, first of all they are quite lame and uncreative. Secondly, they might actually be theologically unsound. I think we really need to stay away from these acronyms and the hoard of products that come with it.