Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Liar, Loony or Lord

I'm sure you've all heard the argument. Jesus was either a insane, lying or he really is god and the son of god at the same time (put forth, I understand, by C.S. Lewis). Since there is addtional corroborating evidence (which I have never seen), this particular delusion MUST be right.

I don't remember where I saw it, but another blogger added two possibilities (if anyone knows who, please let me know so I can give them credit): Jesus never claimed to be what people say he was, and the story came after (entirely plausible, considering that the Bible was written hundreds of years after he was supposedly crucified), or he never existed, and the whole thing is made up (again, entirely plausible).

It would never occur to Christians to consider these possibilities. I mean, many are prepared to accept that parts of the Bible are allegorical, or even untrue. But if the whole Jesus thing never happened, then there's really no such thing as a Christian. And so, if the idea is presented, they have to reject it completely.

I don't know what it is about this Howse guy, but Christian Worldview's on a hitting streak. I was emailed an article from a week ago, Jesus: Messiah, Prophet or Liar?, by Walter Martin. Obviously, it brings up the Loony, Liar or Lord argument, while omitting the crazy bit, and obviously ignoring the other two options:

Jesus prophesied His resurrection. He even prophesied the nature of His resurrection. He put it to rest forever when He said, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.” The prophecy of His bodily resurrection is the foundation of all Christian theology. Without its fulfillment, He was a liar. He was a false prophet. He was deservedly executed, and Deuteronomy 13 could be applied to Him without question.

But if Jesus is the Messiah, then He is in the true, classic sense of prophetic fulfillment, a Person with enormous power; not just charisma, but a Person with enormous power. The Old Testament record reveals in Daniel 8 and 9 that Messiah will die—but not for Himself. He will die for the sins of the people. He would be the conqueror, and David said it would not be possible that death should hold Him hostage. This is more than just an earthly ruler. This is someone with enormous power. We’re talking about the Redeemer, we’re talking about the Conqueror of death, we’re talking about someone who died not for Himself, but for the sins of all mankind.

Christianity is the exclusive way to Heaven. Why? Because Jesus Christ rose from the dead. If He didn’t rise from the dead, He was a phony. He was a false Messiah, a false prophet, a liar, a deceiver and demon possessed—at the very worst.
It's awfully neat, really, but it underlines the essential problem with religion. It is internally consistent (for the most part), but it need not rely on evidence, corroboration, or reality. Quite simply, if you accept the Bible is true, then Jesus is the way to heaven. Martin puts it right out there, pointing at his only evidence. And it's the only evidence he needs, really. Asking for more is quite simply asking too much. He explains his point a little more clearly, but it's ultimately a reiteration of what he's already said.

If He rose from the dead, as the Scripture says, then He is the Son of God with power, because of His resurrection. He is the way, the truth and the life because no one else could rise from the dead and no one else could conquer death as He did. His unique claim to everything is by virtue of His resurrection. Therefore, He is the Son of God. He is the Savior of the World, and that’s why Christianity is the truth.
"[A]s the Scripture says" is all he's got. The fact that nobody else comes back from the dead? Doesn't matter. The fact that the only evidence you need a messiah at all comes from earlier parts of the same book? Who cares. It's a closed system, folks, and we'd do well to remember it.

There are several things I don't understand. Here are two: Apologists' constant attempts to "prove" their faith is the right one, and other people's attention to those attempts. Religion can't be proven, so it's pointless to try. When we pay attention, it only encourages them.

And I'm aware of the irony.

But the certainty of that last sentence is worth noting, too: "He is the Savior of the World, and that’s why Christianity is the truth. "It's circular reasoning at it's finest, and Martin is absolutely sure of his position. It's more than a little frightening, honestly. And many believers are like that.

(Please give me credit for the image if you use it. Email me if you'd like a larger version. Thanks.)

1 comment:

ElderChild said...

Who is this 'christian' 'jesus'?

Truth is the name 'jesus' was first imagined some
500 years, or so, ago! Truth is that the name 'jesus'
was not spoken for some 1500 years after The
Messiah "ascended to His GOD and Father".

And The Messiah's GOD is The GOD of His Brethren
and The Messiah's Father is The Father of His Brethren.

The Messiah, "ascended to His GOD" and was the
"first-born of many Brethren", "The Beginning of The
Creation of The Only True GOD".

The Messiah('christ') is "the mediator between The
Only True GOD and man".

The Messiah's GOD given name when translated
into today's english would be Joshua. Should not
The Son of The Only True GOD be called by The
Name given to Him by His Father and GOD? Yet
His exalted title is The Messiah, The Son of The
Living GOD, for as there is only One True GOD,
so also there is only One True Messiah, Yahshua
(Joshua in modern day english)The Son of GOD!

The Messiah testified, "I ascend to My GOD and
your GOD, to My Father and your Father"!

Truth also testifies that the name 'jesus' was "imag"ined
just prior to what 'the god of this world' and his 'christianity'
declared to be the 'reformation'. That also was some 500
years, or so, ago.

Prior to the 'reformation' there was no letter 'j' in the english
language! Indeed 'catholicism' was reformed, in the sense
of being restructured and made to appear differently. The
various 're-formed' systems of religion were, and are, her
offspring! And they all bear the 'mark' of their 'god' 'jesus'!

Either they name one head of their three headed pagan
'god' 'jesus' or they make the one they call 'jesus' their
'god'. All are but harlot religions fornicating with 'the
god of this world' because they love this world, it's things,
and their own lives in and of this evil, wicked world!

"The ONLY TRUE GOD", HE Has No 'god'!

"Truth" Tesifies:
"The Messiah is The Son of The Living GOD"!
"catholic/christian" lies:
'jesus' is 'god' or 1/3 of a 'god' or an angel or ????

"Truth" Tesifies:
"Love your enemies! Turn the other cheek"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
fight and war in the flesh! kill your enemies ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"This world is evil!" "Come Out of her, MY people"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
we can change this world and make it 'better' ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"The WHOLE world lies in wickedness"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
there are righteous nations, the usa and others ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"Love not the world or the things of this world"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
love this world and thank 'god' for it's things ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"Pagans observe days, months and years"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
christmas, easter, halloween, 'good' friday, etc. ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"Serve The Only True GOD and HIM alone"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
serve family, country and their "imag"ined 'god' ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
GOD asks, "What building will you build unto ME"?
"catholic/christian" folklore:
various buildings dedicated to their "imag"ined 'god' ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"As The Messiah suffered so His Brethren will suffer"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
eat, drink, be merry, especially during x-mass season ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"GOD helps those who cry unto HIM for help"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
'god' helps those who help themselves ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"NO man has seen The Only True GOD"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
many saw their "imag"ined 'god' 'jesus' ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"GOD is Spirit and a Spirit has not flesh and bones"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
except for their "imag"ined 'god' 'jesus' that is ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"When you pray do so in private"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
pray aloud so that others might hear ;-(

"Truth" Tesifies:
"Swear not! Let your yes, be yes, your no, no"!
"catholic/christian" folklore:
put your hand on their 'bible' and swear to their 'god' ;-(

The Messiah testified, "That they might know YOU,
The ONLY TRUE GOD, and The Messiah, Whom YOU
have sent"!

The Messiah testified, "Love Your Enemies"!

Islam, Judaism, and that which calls herself 'christianity':

Religious systems of this world and all alike they are,
for they have fought and killed both near and far;

And then once a week or multiples times a day they pray,
and then as hypocrites begin each new day;

Days filled with deceit and lies,
for in their religious systems Truth cannot abide;

And so the fruit of death is born of their religious ways,
for life is but a pawn in the wicked game they play!

Multitudes have been seduced by " the commandments
and doctrines of men and devils"! Theo'ry'logy has bound
the common people in the chains of "strong delusion".

The Only True GOD has given HIS Call, "Come out of her,
MY people", to all who are held captive by this wicked,
evil world and it's seductive religious systems, especially
the one that calls herself "christianity".

"The mother of harlots", "catholicism", and her "protesting"
"christian" daughters, as well as today's "judaism" and
"islam", are but seductive harlots fornicating with 'the god
of this world'!

They believe in, and are authors of, death ;-(

The Only True GOD would have us "set our affections on
things above". HIS Children desire that which is eternal,
and have quit serving 'time' in the prison that is this wicked
world. HIS Children have heeded The Call to repent and:

"Come out from among them and be seperate"!

They have "Come out" of this wicked, evil world and it's
systems of religion for they realize that "the WHOLE world
is under the control of the evil one". (I John 5:19)

Sadly, a wicked, worldly "christianity" and "catholicism"
are reasons why "The Way of Truth is evil spoken of" ;-(
(II Peter 2:2)

Yet there is Hope!

For Miracles do happen!

Hope is there would be those who "set their affections on
things above", Heavenly things, for they will quit serving
'time' in the prison that is this world! Worldly systems but
feed "the lust of the eye, the lust of the flesh and the pride
of life" and such systems are of mankind's "imag"ination,
and mankind's "imag"ination is under the dominion of
"the father of lies", he who is "the god of this world", he
who is "d"evil spirit of darkness who genders but death,
destruction, perversion, and fear!

Heed GOD's Call and "Come out of her, MY people"!

Experience Peace, in spite of the dis-ease(no-peace) that
is of this wicked world and it's systems of religion, for "the
WHOLE world is under the control of the evil one"....... francisco