Thursday, June 09, 2005

The Most Like Christ

In our American culture we like to rank things. Top 100 small businesses, top 5 greatest movies, New York's best doctors, all-time worst sci-fi movies, etc. I think that even within our Mormon culture we rank things. Top 5 scriptures on faith, favorite three mission companions, worst bishop, etc. I'll bet some of us even rank each other on such silliness as arrogance or humility. "He's the most arrogant person I've ever known." has often left my lips.

If the ultimate goal is to become Christ-like, then wouldn't it follow that that characteristic could be ranked as well? I would imagine the first name that we think of is President Hinckley. But is that the case? Is he really the person most like Christ that is living on this earth?

I don't think so for two reasons.

First of all these men are called because that's who God wants in those positions, not because they are the most righteous in the world. This same principle is applied to our home wards, the bishop is often not the humblest, most faithful, or most loving person in the ward, but he's called because God wants him there. And lemme tell ya, administration skills are a valued asset in this Church, and there are some devilish people with incredible admin skills.

Secondly, if this were the case then you could effectively say that no woman has ever been the most Christ-like person living, an idea which I wholly reject. As far as Christ-like attributes, I'd say I know many more women who posses these than men (though I think generally men are better at administrating).

I believe President Hinckley is the Prophet and I believe his words. I do not, however, believe that we can project our man-made ranking system on something such as our likeness to our Savior. Besides, I know too many wonderfully righteous people to automatically put him above them.