Joy in trying

There are some battles which you can be pretty certain the outcome will not be in your favor and yet you fight them anyway because they need to be fought. The almost 5 years in Iraq is one that comes quickly to mind. Even if you are successful in the military operation you may still lose the political battle back at home. War is never popular, but occasionally it still needs to be fought. Where would we be with out defending values? We could be British, we could be slave masters, we could be part of the Japanese empire, we could be flying a swastika over the Whitehouse and most recently we could have bowed down and become Islamic republic under sharia law. Sometimes battles need to be fought.

Over the past few days a couple of significantly smaller battles have come to mind.

My Progressives in the air post explains my concern over outside agendas being pushed through local candidates and local media. The Herald had 2 opinion pieces about the situation and yet neither attempted to represent the facts nor call on the candidates to even acknowledge their supporters let alone the supporters agenda. Of course the comment section took on it’s usual character. Conservatives calling for facts and liberals calling for I don’t know what.

The other battle is one that I readily accept will never be won until the big final battle is fought. The First Congregational Church is hosting The Jesus Seminar and the Herald was right there to promote this for profit event that’ll cost you $60 bucks. They titled the article Historical Jesus is focus of seminar and described the seminar as

The Jesus Seminar is an effort by Bible scholars to promote religious literacy, said Rod MacKenzie, a member of the church. Based at the Westar Institute in Santa Rosa, Calif., the scholars explore, “what the historical Jesus was really like, MacKenzie said. “What did he actually say and what did he actually do?”

This all sounds good on the surface. In fact if I had more warning I might have actually liked to attend. But I would have been attending with a knowledge of The Jesus Seminar to which the article only alluded.

“These are not people who see the Bible as the literal word of God,” he said. “They see the Bible as a human document.”

The Jesus Seminar calls the divinity of Christ into question and in fact purports that almost all of what Jesus said and did, never actually happened. No son of God, No trinity, no miracles and no resurrection. They take a decidedly naturalistic point of view regarding Jesus, that he was just some guy like you and I. I’m sure this is a very popular philosophy in Bellingham. Again this aspect of the seminar must have slipped by the articles author, but I brought it up in the comment sections.

For decades this group has been preaching not only a historical perspective on Jesus the human, but the historical perspective that Jesus was only human, not God as He said. They teach that He didn’t perform miracles and wasn’t resurrected at all, let alone to take on the sins of the world enabling us to gain salvation.

Can you guess the response to this comment? I don’t guess anymore nor concern myself. The responses are part of the joy I find in trying. Here are a couple of highlights.

Biblical scholar is an oxymoron. Right-wing Christian is an oxymoron.
Religious education is an oxymoron. Wally, he’s just a plain old moron.

Tell us what Jesus really said, Wally.
I’m sure you were there.
Those dammed Liberals!
What a dope!
You are a disgrace to your own ignorance.

Fun thoughts for the day and just part of the joy I find in trying. Part of the reason it doesn’t bother me much is something that may or may not have been said in the Bible which may or may not be historically correct according to a consensus of scholars.

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
(Ephesians 4:29-32)NIV

I jest a bit as I believe wholly that the whole Bible is the holy word of God, Christ if you will. So now that you know how little it bothers me, if anyone has any further amusing names for me; the comment section is wide open and I’m even tossing around the idea of starting a Top 10 names that I’ve been called. It could be fun.

But if you are the serious type or just feel serious right at this moment and would like a different perspective of The Jesus Seminar then here are a few links to get you started.

Probe Ministries

Rev. Dr. Mark D. Roberts

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2 Responses to “Joy in trying”

  1. wally says:

    It is part of my testimony of Christ as my Savior, that he did not leave, nor reject me through all the time in my life that I rejected him and all forms of religion in this world. And as these guys sometimes get pretty passionate in their words, I remember how Paul was transformed and then redirected his passion against Christians into a most amazing ministry for Christ. Who knows, one of these haters today may be a pastor tomorrow.

    So from a fellow ex religion hater, I pray you have a great day!

  2. nick says:

    Amen, Wally

    God help us if we were ACTUALLY HELD ACCOUNTABLE FOR OUR ACTIONS ON EARTH. It makes us feel better to yell and rant and call those who believe names.

    In EVERY SINGLE CASE, haters of ANY religions do so because THEY DO NOT WANT TO BE HELD ACCOUNTABLE.

    This is a fact. I was a religion hater for 40 years.