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What happened to Jesus and what's a Christian to do with it?

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In the March/April 2008 edition of Tikkun Magazine, Walter Wink, Professor emeritus of Auburn Theological Seminary, pondered upon what happened to Jesus and his disciples:

"No two resurrection accounts in the four Gospels are alike. At the core of all these accounts is the simple testimony: we experienced Jesus as alive…The resurrection appearances did not… take place in the temple before thousands of worshipers, but in the privacy of homes or cemeteries. They did not occur before religious authorities, but to the disciples hiding from those authorities.

"What happened was every bit as real as any other event, only it was not historically observable…Though skeptics might interpret what the disciples experienced as a mass hallucination, the experience itself cannot be denied…what may have happened: the very image of God was altered by the sheer force of Jesus being. God would never be the same. Jesus had indelibly imprinted the divine…In Jesus God took on humanity, furthering the evolution revealed in Ezekiel's vision of Yahweh on the throne in "the likeness, as it were, of a human form." -Ezek. 1:26.

"Something also happened to the disciples. They experienced the most essential aspect of Jesus as remaining with them after his death…after his resurrection, to interpret the unleashing of those powers [to heal, preach, and cast out demons] in themselves, [was] as if Jesus himself had taken residence in their hearts…In their preaching they extended his critique of domination. They continued his life by advancing his mission. They persisted in proclaiming the domination-free order of God inaugurated by Jesus." [1]

When Jesus quoted the psalmist, "I said, you are gods: you are all children of the Most High God" he not only agitated the temple teachers of the law, he challenged state authorities by equating all people as sisters and brothers and co-equals with Cesar.

It has been said, tell me your politics and I will know who your god/God is:

A god of war, or the God of peace? A god of injustice, or the God of justice? A god who seeks vengeance or the God of compassionate mercy? A god of violent retaliation or the God of nonviolence?

When we who claim to be Christian learn of and worship the God Jesus illuminated; the God of peace and nonviolence, not the god of state or nation, we will be a person who seeks peace by pursuing justice and remain physically nonviolent, but never silent.

Jesus was NEVER a Christian; the term 'Christian' was not even coined until the days of Paul, about 3 decades after Jesus/AKA: The Prince of Peace walked the earth and taught that it is the peacemakers who are the children of God, NOT those that bomb, occupy or torture others.
2,000 years ago The Cross had NO symbolic religious meaning and was not a piece of jewelry.
When JC said: "Pick up your cross and follow me" everyone THEN understood he was issuing a POLITICAL statement, for the main roads into Jerusalem were lined with crucified agitators, rebels, dissidents and any who disturbed the status quo of the Roman Empire and Military Occupying Forces.
Jesus, while never a Christian, was a social, justice, radical revolutionary Palestinian devout Jewish road warrior who rose up against the corrupt Temple authorities and challenged their job security by teaching the people they did NOT need to pay the priests for ritual baths or sacrificing livestock to be OK with God; for God LOVED them just as they were:
Sinners, poor, diseased, outcasts, widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners all living under the Roman Empire and Military Occupation.
What got JC crucified was disturbing the status quo of the Roman Empire and Occupying Forces by teaching the subversive concept that God preferred the humble sinner, the poor, diseased, outcasts, widows, orphans, refugees and prisoners all living under the Roman Empire and Military Occupation above the elite and arrogant.
The early followers and lovers of Jesus were called members of THE WAY-being THE WAY he taught one should be and that his sisters and brothers were those that DID the will of the Father: "What does God require? He has told you o'man! Be just, be merciful, and walk humbly with your Lord." -Micah 6:8

"Everyone in the world knows that Jesus and his teachings were non-violent: except Christians."-Gandhi

Jesus has been accused of being a pacifist, but his nonviolent responses to evil were never passive!

Turning the other cheek when struck is the sublime response to resist violence by disarming the attacker by maintaining the highest ground: self-controlled nonviolence.

"In the nations in which Christianity has predominated, Jesus’ teaching on nonviolence has been perverted into injunctions to passive nonresistance, which…is the very opposite of active nonviolence…Jesus always resisted evil…The Greek word translated as “resist” [antistenai], is literally “to stand [stenai] against/anti.”

"The correct translation is given in the new Scholars Bible: “Don’t react violently against the one who is evil.” The meaning is clear: don’t react in kind, don’t mirror your enemy, and don’t turn into the very thing you hate. Jesus is not telling us not to resist evil, but only not to resist it violently." [2]

Programs of practical nonviolent responses to the evil that is violence have been articulated since the days of Hebrew midwives, Jainism, Buddhism, Jesus, St. Francis of Assisi, Gandhi, Martin Luther King and the Muslim Badshah Khan.

Jesus vented his righteous wrath when ever confronted with hypocrisy by being outspokenly courageous, aggressive and sarcastically witty. He also was always gentle with humble sinners, children, misfits, outcasts, cripples, diseased, widows, orphans, prisoners, refugees and preferred to spend his time alone in prayer or in the company of regular people.

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Eileen Fleming,is a Citizen of CONSCIENCE for US House of Representatives 2012 Founder of Staff Member of, A Feature Correspondent for Producer "30 Minutes with Vanunu" and "13 Minutes with Vanunu" (more...)
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