Although it has meandered quite a lot, I think this "series" started out as an attempt to clarify why, although I am not enamoured with institutional Christianity, I still follow Jesus. Basically, it is because I see in Him the fulfilment of all that I see as real spirituality, and the antidote to religion. Ironic, huh, that so much religion has grown up surrounding his name!?
Many (perhaps most?) people who are familiar with the Jesus story, see it as a call to live according to Christian "law", perhaps a declaration that there is only one way; that being the Judeo-Christian cultural tradition, a denouncement of sin (because of course, that is how we got into this mess - all our fault!), a demand to ascribe to a particular set of "righteous" behaviours, and a requirement to join and belong to the "right" group. The reward for all this, is that you get to go to Heaven, rather than Hell (where all the non-believers end up) after you die, and an implied assumption that "spiritual" and "holy" are something quite apart from this tainted, earthly life.
The thing is, when you do see it that way, the person of Jesus actually becomes very difficult to reconcile with it. His behaviour and sayings become problematic and contradictory... because they really don't fit in with that view!