19 May 2013

Christology / Christian

Was Jesus fully God, fully human, both, or neither? Could Jesus really know the human condition if He was truly without sin? If Jesus was omniscient, unable to deceive himself the way we can, how could He have struggled with temptation the way scripture tells us He did?

Was Jesus married? Did He have a beard? Did He wear His hair long? Was Jesus an actual historical person or a myth?


By Berihert (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

These are all interesting questions to ponder, but—ultimately—I don’t believe they matter. Jesus’ message wasn’t about His nature, even if scripture occasionally tries to say that it was.

Being a Christian is not—to me—about the Trinity, the nature of the Christ, the Immaculate Conception (which probably doesn’t mean what you think it means), the Cross, the Resurrection, or the Afterlife.

Being a Christian is about a humble attitude, a charitable spirit, and the words & actions that flow naturally from those. It is about being at peace in the midst of strife. It is about loving both the lovable and the unlovable. It is about forgiving the unforgivable. It is about learning to listen to that small, still voice inside. It is about being able to put other priorities above your will. It is about learning that whatever mistakes you may have made, you are worthy of love, you can turn things around, you can make amends, and you can be forgiven.

Is that cherry-picking? Perhaps. I’d rather be called a hypocrite for using reason and prayer to discern the Godly from the human in religion than to be called a hypocrite for putting the letter of the law above the spirit or for preaching one thing while practicing another.

Note that while I may be all three kinds of hypocrite, I am saying that I only aspire to being the first. I’m working on not being the others.


Anonymous said...

Not that I subscribe to any of it, but the essence of Christianity is redemption of humanity through blood sacrifice. It has absolutely nothing to do with one's humility, spirituality or anything else related to how one lives their life (our righteousness is as "filthy rags"). From the Christian perspective, man is in a fallen and sinful condition and damned through imperfection. But God chooses to redeem him anyway through the exercise of faith and nothing more. That may not be how you personally choose to interpret Christianity, but it is the singular message of the Gospels, just for the record.

Robert said...

That’s not the singular message of the gospels. You can’t deny that the message of the Sermon on the Mount, the Greatest Commandment, and the Penultimate Commandant are in there too.

The problem with the blood sacrifice message is that we are so far removed from when blood sacrifice meant anything, that it’s meaningless today unless you take the time to study it. So, when we (Christians) lead with that, we might as well be speaking in tongues.