It has often been claimed that Jesus led a perfect, blameless life on earth.
This claim is, indeed, one of the pillars of Christianity.
However, it seems to me that reading the sacred Scriptures with even only a faintly jaundiced eye can lead to an altogether different conclusion. For instance:(All quotes from the KJV)
THE MIRACLE OF CANA.
Such rudeness and irrelevance packed into one short statement! Of course, in that culture
at that time, women, even those later to be considered to have been immaculately conceived,
were, in the opinion of men at least, somewhat less than human; only slightly higher than the animals.
JC here shows his all too human feet of clay.
"And seeing a fig tree afar off having leaves, he came, if haply he might find anything thereon: and when he came to it, he found nothing but leaves; for the time of figs was not yet. And Jesus answered and said unto it. No man eat fruit of thee hereafter for ever. And his disciples heard it."
(Matthew 21:19 has a different version of what He said.)
Cursing a fig tree for not having fruit out of season? Childish pique if you ask me. After the tree had withered, JC used it to promise his disciples that, were they only to have faith and not doubt Him, they could be as destructive as he!
".....there met him out of the tombs a man with an unclean spirit. .....For he said unto him, come out of the man, thou unclean spirit. And he asked him, What is thy name? And he answered, saying, My name is Legion: for we are many. ....Now there was nigh unto the mountains a great herd of swine feeding. And all the devils besought him, saying, Send us into the swine, that we may enter into them. And forthwith Jesus gave them leave. And the unclean spirits went out, and entered into the swine: and the herd ran violently down a steep place into the sea, (they were about two thousand;) and were choked in the sea."
Where were the SPCA when we really needed them?
Jesus really didn't need to do those devils any favours at all! He could just as easily sent them back whence they'd come, where, presumably, they went a few moments later anyway. But instead he permitted them to infect 2000 little piggies, innocent bystanders if ever there were, whose only sin was to stand too close to our Lord and Saviour.
And if you think that drowning is a pleasant way to go, just try holding your head in a bucket of water and then breathing.
Nor should we forget the owner of the swine, and his family. All of a sudden their livelihood was wiped out. With no insurance company to pay for this loss (and any way, wasn't it an 'Act of God'?) the family was ruined.
How many lives were destroyed so JC could do those darned devils a little favour?
"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth; I come not to send peace, but a sword."
(Luke 12:51 says much the same thing.) Peace on Earth and good will toward men? Yeah, Right!
And a Merry Christmas to you too!
"Then Jesus went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon.
And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts and cried unto him, saying, Have mercy on me, Oh Lord, thou son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil.
But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and besought him, saying, Send her away; for she crieth after us.
But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.
Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me.
But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children's bread, and to cast it to dogs.
And she said, Truth, Lord; yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters' table.
Then Jesus answered and said unto her, O woman, great is thy faith: be it unto thee even as thou wilt. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour.
(The quote is from Matthew; Mark says much the same, but adding that "The woman was a Greek,
a Syrophenician by nation;".)
Several points to consider in this, in some respects, delightful little story of JC being out-humbled and out-smarted by a Greek woman.
First he ignores her; then he tells her that he is concerned only with the Jews; then he likens non-Jews to dogs, and only gives in when she laps up this insult also only to spit it back at him. Humbly of course.
I rather doubt if JC would have approved of St Paul.
"For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
And a man's foes shall be they of his own household."
"If any man come to me, and hate not his father, and mother, and wife, and children, and brethren, and sisters, yea, and his own life also, he cannot be my disciple."
Doesn't this remind you of just about any cultist you've ever heard of?
"From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go into Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men."
Simply because Peter couldn't stand the thought of what was to happen to his friend, and said so, Jesus calls him Satan; a real
swear word at that time. What a nice guy! But don't you ever dare contradict him.
To set the stage:
JC, after having been baptised by John the Baptist, goes into the wilderness for a few rounds with 'the tempter'. he prepares for this by fasting for forty days and forty nights! After this He is, not surprisingly, 'an hungered'. (Not to mention delirious.) After losing two rounds on points, the devil goes into the third, and final, round with this grandiose roundhouse:
"Again, the devil taketh him up into an exceeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them;"
...and asks for worship in return for all this stuff. JC counters with a knockout rejection, the devil
retires discomfitted and JC ends up being ministered to by his angelic seconds.
Now, the question here is where did Matthew get this story? The devil presumably was not saying very much at all about it and nobody else was there except JC Himself. So Matthew heard it from JC. JC obviously believed that, given a mountain sufficiently high, it would be possible to see all the earth at once. In other words He thought that the earth is flat!
No evidence of divine knowledge there.
When asked what the signs would be of the His coming and the end of the world, JC spoke about these signs and then said:
"......This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled."
That generation has been gone nearly two thousand years and still the world is not ended.
"And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying.......that is to say, My God, My God, why hast thou forsaken me?"
Of course, JC was here under nearly unimaginable stress, having suffered an impossible pain for nearly
half a day. Maybe He'd expected his Heavenly Father to send down a couple of hosts of angels to rescue Him.
Or at least put Him out of His misery faster than this?
Nine hours of such agony was simply too much for any man to bear in silence. And that's all He was, really, wasn't He? Just another man? Not really a superhuman He, but only an ordinary, everyday he.
That is, if he ever actually existed at all.
Well, there you have them: Just a few examples of ordinary human behaviour that seem to belie
those claims of a perfect earthly life.
Maybe those with more biblical experience than I could add to them.
Or, perhaps, explain them away?
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