Which Is It?

A Summary of the Choices Given for Your Consideration

The 4th century creeds clearly state the divine incarnation of the Galilean “human one,” whom it is so confessed had acted on behalf of humanity’s salvation, suffered, died, rose, and returned to his sky-father while humans wait for his return in judgment of their “faith” in the sky-god’s plan. According to the creeds he will then send unbelievers to an everlasting hellish punishment.

Refusing to confess the above has excluded and led to massive and gruesome acts of punishment of untold millions of humans, heinous acts performed in the name of the church’s sky-god and his sky-god son. (Review the Church’s constant persecution of the Jews during the Dark Ages and after, the Crusades, the Inquisition, the Holocaust, the treatment of scientists like Galileo, Copernicus, and more, even by Reformation Protestant leaders.) This history alone should jolt us into testing our self-consciousness concerning “doing the right thing” to and for our neighbor.

The source of retaliation thinking was the ancient Summerian messianic apocalyptic plan finally described in detail by Zoroaster. It was formulated into the creeds by the official Christian Church. The entire plan which had been adapted by Judaism during their Babylonian captivity had cleverly been reconstructed into Paul’s salvation theology during the mid-1st century. Fortunately, there is still another choice to consider.

Jewish Prophets before and during their captivity encouraged a different mindset, one which said that humanity should live God’s real justice, offering inclusive compassion and forgiveness to all, no matter what. This was totally opposite to a sky-god seeking revenge for humanity’s disobedience. Religious leaders would hear none of such “blasphemy” against their “eye for an eye” standard of justice and against their sky-god’s “holy” word. They soon murdered the Prophets in the name of their sky-god and his “holy” law.

The following seven+ centuries brought on difficult times for the Jews. Did they “reap what they had planted?” You decide. Jerusalem and their holy Temple were destroyed and they were either killed or carried off as slaves into Babylon. When Persians defeated the Babylonians, the Jews were allowed to return home to rebuild their city and the Temple. But not long after, the Greeks took control and turned the Temple into a home for Greek gods instead. Then the Romans took control. During this time the Jewish Maccabees staged several unsuccessful rebellions which always made things worse for the Jews. To maintain peace, those Jewish “Messiah” rebels and their followers were quickly arrested and publicly crucified.

Do we bring on our own troubles and suffering? Sometimes, yes we do, just like the Prodigal son. Other times they are just part of life’s opportunities to learn something better. Jesus’ early experience may have been exactly that.

Living during such a rebellious time and surrounded by an apocalyptic mindset, the Galilean “human one” made a giant leap in understanding. His transition into “doing the right thing,” the loving thing, instead of using payback as a way of justice, was unusual to say the least.

Perhaps it was his horrible experience of growing up as “Mary’s bastard son.” (The neighbors and his siblings ridiculed him with that.) That was the constant reminder that many think caused him to reject all social behaviors that belittled and excluded others, including the religious payback apocalyptic thinking with its vengeful sky-god, such as the message of cousin John the baptizer.

And it may have been that Joseph’s compassionate and loving acceptance of him, as if Jesus were his own son, that helped Jesus to better understand the comforting words of the OT Prophets read in the Synagogue after reading the Torah. He had noticed the difference between the two forms of justice.

Jesus learned about an ever-present Fatherly God, a generous Abba, One yearning to spread unconditional forgiveness and mercy to all his daughters and sons, no matter what their past may have been. This, then, soon became the message of the Galilean Peasant. His message together with his living were examples of the presence and the justice of this Infinite Goodness (Abba) in the here-and-now. But this form of justice disturbed the religious leaders because it “blasphemed” their “holy” words and the “just” ways of their pay-back sky-god.

Jesus’ public message was short lived. Although it comforted the oppressed, it challenged the more educated elite and their “holy” scrolls. Jesus was soon accused of being just another rebel, and he was quickly murdered by the Romans for upsetting local beliefs and causing riots. His chosen followers scattered for their lives. Some returned to Galilee and some supposedly returned later to the Jerusalem Synagogue to find reasons for Jesus’ demise in the “holy” scrolls.

During 50 – 55 CE, a well-educated Paul saw opportunity to spread his vision of an apocalyptic Christ-Messiah among the Greek-speaking Gentiles. He obviously turned Jesus into someone Jesus never was nor ever intended to be. By 70 CE, during another Jewish messiah rebellion, the Romans destroyed Jerusalem, the Temple, and either killed or disbursed the Jews throughout the Empire.

But Jesus’ sayings still influenced many early followers who spread them orally and tried to live them. And many now think that the spirit of his core message can still be found in several of his parables like the Prodigal Son, the Generous Landowner, and the Good Samaritan. Also, see Matt 5:38-48. These sayings reveal the diamond that Jesus discovered concerning an unconditionally loving (Abba) still found among all the apocalyptic weeds of the NT (written two and three generations after Jesus was murdered and one and two generations after Paul’s letters). It is most interesting, however, that his discovery cannot be found in any of the Christian Creeds. Obviously the official Christian Church elected to subscribe to Paul’s ideas of a vengeance-filled sky-god and a saving “Christ” instead of Jesus’ discovery of an always present and unconditionally loving Abba.

The false unjust accusations against Jesus, and an unjust Roman death penalty, was eventually turned into a sky-god’s salvation plan for disobedient humans. Worse, the Church added to Paul’s threatening vision of the returning sky-god’s son for some vengeance of his own in a final judgment and an everlasting hellish punishment for unbelief in his sky-god father’s salvation plan.

None-the-less, “doing the right thing” because that is what Abba would do is like an echo still ringing in the Christian’s “holy” book and in my ears. As for the Christian creeds and their threats… Well, I no longer fear them! Why? With a loving Abba always present with me, I know that the Christian sky-god and his sky-god son are myths and that their return in judgment and their final apocalypse will never occur!

How about you? Can you hear his nonthreatening whisper?

Henry Hasse ~ May 19, 2014

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Published in: on May 13, 2014 at 6:23 pm  Leave a Comment  

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