The enemies of Jesus say that He addressed His appeal to slaves and outcasts, and would have incited them against their lords. They say that because He was of the lowly He invoked His own kind, yet that He sought to conceal His own origin.
But let us consider the followers of Jesus, and His leadership.
In the beginning He chose for companions few men from the North Country, and they were freemen. They were strong of body and bold of spirit, and in these past twoscore years they have had the courage to face death with willingness and defiance.
Think you that these men were slaves or outcasts?
And think you that the proud princes of Lebanon and Armenia have forgotten their station in accepting Jesus as a prophet of God?
Or think you the high-born men and women of Antioch and Byzantium and Athens and Rome could be held by the voice of a leader of slaves?
Nay, the Nazarene was not with the servant against his master; neither was He with the master against his servant. He was with no man against another man.
He was a man above men, and the streams that ran in His sinews sang together with passion and with might.
If nobility lies in being protective, He was the noblest of all men. If freedom is in thought and word and action, He was the freest of all men. If high birth is in pride that yields only to love and in aloofness that is ever gentle and gracious, then He was of all men the highest born.
Forget not that only the strong and the swift shall win the race and the laurels, and that Jesus was crowned by those who loved Him, and also by His enemies though they knew it not.
Even now He is crowned every day by the priestesses of Artemis in the secret places of her temple.