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Monday, 29 March 2010

Palm Sunday + 1

So, if my reasoning of yesterday - and that of others - is correct, Jesus of Nazareth, Who rode into Jerusalem on the back of a donkey on that first Palm Sunday, was not a liar. But perhaps He was a Lunatic!

Perhaps He actually thought that He was God; perhaps he was totally convinced, in His own mind, but was simply mistaken! It is, after all, perfectly possible to be both sincere and wrong!

Of course, merely being sincerely wrong doesn't automatically mean that a person is suffering from lunacy. But we must surely remember that for someone to think that he is God - especially someone brought up as a Jew; someone who knew and recited many passages form the Hebrew Scriptures (the Old Testament of the Christian Bible) on a daily basis, especially Deuteronomy 6:4ff that begins "Hear, O Israel, YHWH, your God, YHWH is One ..."; for one like that to think that he is God, and to tell others that what happened to them after physical death depended on their believing in (trusting) him, committing themselves - body, mind, and spirit - to him; this is no little mistake, no flight of fancy. This is way beyond the man who thinks that he is a poached egg (as someone - possibly C.S.Lewis - has put it!). This is the thinking of a lunatic; one who is insane, crazy, mad, senseless. "Who is this?" - a lunatic?!

Permit me to quote from a writer who belonged to a group of people who don't accept the Deity of the Lord Jesus, but that thinks of Him as being no more than a very good man. Speaking of the lunatic theory, William Ellery Channing (honorary transcendentalist, and Unitarian minister) wrote: "The charge of an extravagant, self-deluding, enthusiasm is the last to be fastened on Jesus. Where can we
find the traces of it in His history? Do we detect them in the calm authority of His precepts; in the mild, practical, and beneficent spirit of His religion; in the unlaboured simplicity of the language with which He unfolds His high powers, and the sublime truths of religion; or in the good sense, the knowledge of human nature, which He always discovers in His estimate, and treatment, of the different classes of me with whom He acted?" (The Romance of M. Renan, and the Christ of the Gospels; p.91). And the answer, of course, is that it isn't found anywhere! Whatever else Jesus was, He was no lunatic!

So, "Who is this?" Please check out this blog tomorrow for a final possibility!

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