Archives For Jesus

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From “An Unexpected Peace”:

“When the angels announced that peace had arrived on earth, it was not because Herod was dethroned, or the Jewish people agreed on the identity of the real King of the Jews, or because the message of Christ would ensure that everybody got along. They announced that peace had arrived on earth because Jesus had arrived, and those on whom his favor rested would benefit in a way that somehow transcended political and social realities. The circumstances hadn’t changed – other than that Christ was present.

Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give unto you…not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid” (John 14:27). Jesus spoke these words in the middle of the most tumultuous and violent events of his life. Judas Iscariot was hatching a plot to betray him. The crowds were in an uproar. The chief priests, scribes, and Pharisees were disturbed and fearful, hatching their own plots to rid themselves of this menace to their power and position. Even the Romans could feel the atmosphere of tension in the city.

Yet in the midst of all this, Jesus said he was giving peace. Clearly, the peace he offers isn’t a peace by the standards of the world (John 14:27). Peace is not just the absence of strife. A fuller definition has to involve the presence of Christ: “He is our peace” (Ephesians 2:14). True peace is found when we are in right relationship with Christ. The promise of Christmas is that Christ can bring peace within us even as life remains tumultuous around us.”

 

Jesus never claimed to be God

Scott Smith —  February 2, 2012 — 1 Comment

  • How can we claim Jesus is God when he never made the statement about himself?
  • If Jesus knew there were people calling him divine, he would roll over in his grave.
  • Jesus would be horrified to see us viewing him as more than a teacher, let alone deity.

This is the challenge. Jesus never claimed to be God, so why are we forcing that on the text? The fact is, it doesn’t take a scholar to see who Jesus thought he was. Following are a few examples of things Jesus said and did, as well as things Jesus permitted, which constitute direct evidence of his message that he was God. You may believe or not, but there is no doubt as to Jesus’ beliefs on the matter.

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Here’s the full challenge: Sure, Jesus was a real historical figure. He was a homeless teacher who was a generally good man. His early followers really, really wanted for him to be the Messiah. They attempted to impose this on him but he rejected it. Their desire was so great however, that over time the church itself began teaching Jesus’ divinity. This ultimately culminated in Constantine gathering all church leaders together in 325AD to vote on the matter. After this historic session, Jesus’ deity was firmly established, and taught as Christian truth by royal edict from that point on.

There is one glaring problem with this view: it is patently false. Continue Reading…

The Jesus Inquest

Anthony Weber —  January 13, 2012 — Leave a comment

Charles Foster is a barrister and tutor in medical law and ethics at the University of Oxford. That explains The Jesus Inquest. If you are looking for a book about the death, resurrection, and post-resurrection appearances of Christ that is heavily documented and presented like courtroom testimony, this is the book for you.

Though this may sound daunting,  Foster’s approach works.  He designates two speakers, X (a skeptic) and Y (a believer), to present the best case for each side.    John Lennox has noted that “Charles Foster has managed to do what should be legally impossible: to combine the role of defense and prosecution.” The key arguments deal with the source documents; Jesus’ death, burial, and post-resurrection appearances; the empty tomb; and the early church’s perspective on resurrections in general.  The Shroud of Turin, the Jesus family tomb, and the Gospel of Peter get additional post-debate coverage.
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Did Jesus even exist?

Scott Smith —  January 4, 2012 — 36 Comments

Jesus  never existed. He was merely a myth.

This is typical charge anyway.

So, how about it? Was there ever a man named Jesus of Nazareth?

The very simple answer is, yes. I’m not saying this on faith or on some religious book’s say-so. I’m stating what historians agree is an indisputable fact. You see, history is done a specific way. Historians have rules for what is acceptable evidence. If there is any doubt about Jesus’ existence, then the same doubt is cast on all historical figures. Simply put, if we cannot be certain the Jesus was a real man from Galilee, we cannot be certain of anything.

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