Why Was Jesus Around Prostitutes to Begin With…?
The fact that this is even a question a vast majority of us are asking eludes to the bigger problem; that being, assuming the best, there is this social hierarchy that has impacted our way of thinking; at least to now question why Jesus would hang out with women engaging in what our society has deemed “sexually immoral.”
The religious elite, ironically similar to today, considered these women to be unclean – little has changed as our modernized version of deeming one unclean is seen through things that have been labeled as “slut-shaming,” negatively using homosexual labels as degrading terminology… etc.
In the words of Nietzsche, “Christianity is a protest against the merciless mechanism of selection in this world.” Understanding the irony, Jesus’ mission was one in which was just this; He pointed towards an upside-down Kingdom.
Swinging it back around, this is exactly why He hung out with “prostitutes” in the first place. Furthermore, this is exactly why He had zero issue with Himself (Jesus Christ) showing and receiving public physical affection with a woman known as a prostitute throughout the city (Luke 7).
His actions being made so very public in front of the religious elite were absolutely done with a motive; as they were prophetically symbolic; intentionally hyperbolic; purposely offensive; all of which, taking note from OT prophets such as Isaiah (running naked for three years [Isaiah 20]) or Hosea (marrying a “prostitute” or “adulteress” [Hosea 3]).
“People often get upset when you teach them what is in the Bible rather than what they presume is in the Bible.”
– N.T. Wright
We think of “transcendence” as this lofty metaphysical idea only monks could achieve; looking through the life of Christ, we see this type of transcendence as being tangibly practical. His physical presence and very willingness to dine with sinners, be massaged by a prostitute, and heal the sick… this was his radical and very transcendent way of shattering the boundaries in which excluded, reduced, and dehumanized these people defining them either by their actions or their illnesses.
And, just as a reminder…