Will Jesus (Christ) qualify to be a Christian when he ate with sinners in one table before the public eye?
I was intrigued by this question that I have read from sister’s FB wall. My personal and hypothetical answer to this question is that he would not. I think he himself would disown Christianity (the organized religion) as it is today. I was reminded of Nietzsche’s words:
Truly, too early died that Hebrew whom the preachers of slow death honor: and that he died too early has since been a fatality for many. As yet he knew only tears and the melancholy of the Hebrews, together with the hatred of the good and the just - the Hebrew Jesus: then the longing for death seized him. Had he only remained in the desert and far from the good and the just! Perhaps he would have learned to live and learned to love the earth – and laughter as well!
Believe it, my brothers! He died too early; he himself would have recanted his teaching had he lived to my age! He was noble enough to recant! But he was still immature. The youth loves immaturely …
Jesus was rebel. He was a rebel against organized religion. He saw the absurdities that religious dogmatism created. The idea that the law of God interpreted and then reinterpreted to the point that it run counters to the basic law of common sense drove Jesus to teach common sense. There is nothing earth shaking about the teachings of Jesus. In fact, the simplicity of his teachings testify to its divinity.
Most of his teachings are contained, if not verbatim at least in principles, in the teachings of other sages. There are other religious teachings and myths analogous, but not similar and the same, with the teachings of Jesus. It is quite unproductive to prove the originality or uniqueness of the teachings of Jesus to prove his divinity or deity. I think, the fact that his teachings has some, even at a superficial level, analogy with the teachings of other sages of other religions is a testimony to the truth of God’s general revelation.
The teachings of Jesus are simple because they were not really meant to be complicated and highly abstract. His teachings were meant to be understood by the people of common sense and to be confounding to people who are experts of the laws. The teachings of Jesus was difficult to understand to the experts because they run counter to the way they think, they could find no permutations to his teachings that they could reconcile with their laws.
Why? Experts of the laws think differently. They are, as Jesus when describing them, aptly used these words…”whited sepulchers…filled with bones.” They think they are just; hence Jesus describes them as whited sepulchers, because of the specificity of their laws and it’s careful word for word and step by step study, interpretation and its application gave them legalistic righteousnesses for the technicalities of the law shod them with authority and prerogatives that somehow, in the process, Jesus saw that the spirit of the law has died and what emerged is a monster that has become a tyrant to his people.
Now look at what happened to Christianity? Its two thousand years of History? Isn’t Christianity has become the very thing that Jesus’ fought? Would Jesus even recognize it?
Sometimes I wonder about Paul since most of the Christendom’s conflict came from his theologizing of Christ’s simple teachings. I have often wondered that if Jesus was alive during Paul’s missionary time, would he have accepted Paul’s theology. Would he have acknowledged Paul’s teachings? Paul has given too much Greek abstractions to the simple teachings of Jesus that it somehow destroyed the unity, harmony and graspability of the teachings of Jesus.
Of course, this is just a hunch, isn’t it possible that the teachings of Jesus is a different gospel form those of Paul’s? Isn’t it possible that the message of Jesus was so diluted with Greek that the legalism that killed Judaism is now being repeated by a hydra with a different head, instead of legalism, Christianity is being killed (or was murdered) by abstractionism?
These are some of things that have bugged me for a long time. Haa....faith. Drives me crazy! How wonderful must it have been to experience the simplicity of the early, pre-Bible Christian's faith-centered on Jesus and not on a book.
To answer the above question, I think, if Jesus is alive today, he would be dining with gays, lesbians, pornographers, drug addicts in the same way he has done two thousand years ago. He would not expound Christian doctrine but he would expound the love of God. We, who call ourselves Christians will, I am sure, crucify him again!
My gulay, I have eaten too much ice cream!