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Jesus Christ...Who is He?

Discussion in 'Spiritual Growth & Development' started by darkhorse, Jul 28, 2014.

  1. Hello all. Long time lurker but first time poster. I stumbled upon these forums a few months back and find the discussion here extremely interesting and refreshing. I come from a fundamentalist Christian background, and about a decade ago began to actually think for myself and question some of my beliefs. I have known for quite some time that the things I have always been taught were flawed, but I still have not arrived at a place where I feel 100% comfortable with my beliefs. I guess you could say I'm still seeking the truth. With that being said, I am curious to know what the folks on this forum believe about Jesus Christ. Specifically about the Resurrection, the veracity of the Biblical account of his life and ministry, and any thoughts on who Jesus is and how he fits in to the picture. Any comments are appreciated and I apologize if this has been addressed elsewhere.
     
  2. dopier

    dopier Active Member


    Well hello there, from a fellow former fundamentalist and truth seeker to another. Although I've always been one to question everything, my awakening, I think, started back in the late 90's...although it wasn't until about 2001 that I started to seriously drift from my church and religion. It's probably not completely related but here's an experience I had about Jesus:
    I remember one day questioning my love for Jesus out of frustration. Because although I considered myself a pretty decent christian at the time, I simply couldn't understand why I wasn't (or so I thought) quite affected by the mention of his name like I watched of other people. There was this particular lady in my church that I loved like a mother but that I would consider flawed just like all of us. But I noticed every time you mentioned Jesus she would start crying. And I also saw how people reacted on tv. So I asked myself/Jesus if I didn't appreciate his sacrifice enough to not have similar reactions. I really took that seriously because as I said, I considered myself quite serious about God. But the thing is, up to that point I kind of felt indifferent to the sacrifice/resurrection theory...not quite sure how I felt... if you know what I mean. Well, although I rarely get any signs when I pray for anything, that night I got something. It was quite a lucid experience...although I'm not sure I know what lucid dream is. Jesus just came, smiling and quite nonchalant about the whole thing I might add, and took my hands and said (I'm not sure if he actually spoke or not): "ok, I know you question if this happened or not. It actually happened"...kind of paraphrasing here. We went through the entire experience like a movie, but we were actually there walking around and assisting the events. Now since the impression stayed with me for quite a while, I might be embellishing a bit. But what struck me is the fact that I usually pray for signs and would get not a hint. So to have that happen the same night was something I thought was probably significant. And since I didn't know what I do now, I didn't quite know what to make of it. Actually, I still don't.
    I should note that even before I had the experience I was slowly moving away from the idea that Jesus' sacrifice was anything of significance. Because I saw how people reacted to theories that they disagree with, I thought even today anyone could be killed for advancing anything that the powers that be consider dangerous to their society. So I was drifting towards the idea that perhaps Jesus was a revolutionist/master who challenged the norms and brought forth the crop of God's true message at the time and got killed because of his popularity. And I felt that his approach during the tour he was giving me confirmed my suspicion. I'm far from settled on a great many things. In fact, I've found there are as many disagreements out there as I knew to exist among different religious sects. Hey, it's humans with free will! But I've found the best course for me is to read as much as possible (especially about different experiences) and follow my heart.
     
  3. mac

    mac Staff Member

    Christian teachings haven't ever worked for me and neither does the Bible.

    For me it was necesssary to understand something of life, death and what follows. The phenomenon of the resurrection has been debated at length on other occasions and that same understanding may be helpful in this regard.

    Jesus? He was a teacher/guide, a medium, a healer. His ministry was to enlighten the world - I think he did. Was he a saviour, was he the son of God, did he die that we might be saved, must it be through him that we find God?
    What do you think darkhorse - is this what you believe?
     
  4. Wow...thank you for your reply dopier. Very interesting. Did that experience confirm for you that the resurrection really happened? What about the fundamentalist idea that "salvation" is only available through Jesus?
     
  5. Well I'm not sure Mac. That's certainly what I used to believe. And it's what I was always taught. But now I'm undecided. I have developed such contempt for fundamentalism that I sometimes feel I have swung too far in the opposite direction. Thrown the baby out with the bathwater, so to speak. Know what I mean?
     
  6. mac

    mac Staff Member

    I take your point. I can see why you feel that way even though I haven't experienced it myself. I see things like this, though.

    You've been heavily conditioned to accept notions that have demanded faith concerning their authenticity - no evidence was supplied and you just had to believe what you were taught to believe. Now you're thinking for yourself and have lost that comfort blanket; now you're seeking to understand, to challenge, to look for what makes sense rather than simply accepting what you were told. Freedom can be scary if you feel you're on your own. Am I anywhere near right?

    But take a look around at the members here. You're not on your own and you'll find ideas that will stimulate you to think even further for yourself. You've left what used to be and you're ready for what comes next.
     
  7. You are absolutely correct mac. Everything started to change for me when I was unable to reconcile the idea of a loving God with one who would torment his children forever and ever for not believing in him. For me, that god seemed more like the devil. Then slowly I began to question Biblical inerrancy, literal interpretation of scriptures etc.
     
  8. RobertaGrimes

    RobertaGrimes Administrator

    Welcome, Darkhorse! I have spent decades studying nearly 200 years of abundant and consistent communications from the dead, and have learned the following:

    1) Jesus is the real deal! He told us 2000 years ago many things about God, reality, death, and the afterlife that we could not have confirmed by any other means until at least the 20th century.

    2) Christianity's basic doctrine is in error. I have seen no evidence whatsoever in decades of looking for it that Jesus's death ever has redeemed anyone from anything. I have also seen no evidence that God or any religious figure ever judges us! Instead, each of us is our own afterlife judge. When you think about it, that whole doctrine of sacrificial redemption is insulting to God and demeaning to Jesus, don't you think?

    3) Jesus's teachings are identical to what the dead tell us that we are hear to learn. For nearly all of us, learning to love and forgive is the whole ball of wax. And Jesus said that! He told us that he was our teacher. He also railed against religions and religious dogmas and traditions. Seeing what a mess Christianity has made of his message, you can see why.

    4) Jesus probably did rise from the dead. I think his very public death and dramatic resurrection were a way for him to prove to simple iron-age people that death is not real.

    5) Jesus told us that he was the fulfillment of the Old Testament. YAYY!! Now we don't have to read the OT anymore. And everything in the NT other than the Gospels is post-Jesus Iron-age writings, so we don't need to read that either. Thomas Jefferson said that the words of Jesus stand out in the Bible "like diamonds in a dunghill." And so they do! Just read your Gospels, dear friend, and use them to frame your life. The rest of the Bible can be ignored.

    ... Thank you for asking this question! I love to talk about Jesus, who truly is our Wayshower and Best Friend. But he is not anyone's Savior. God loves each of us infinitely more than barbaric Christian teachings envision, so you are safe in God's arms, dear friend, just as you are!
     
  9. One thing I would like to point out is that all Christians are not fundamentalists. In fact just a few days ago I was talking with an old friend who is an Anglican priest. We were discussing the idea of Hell, which we agreed is scarcely Mentioned at all in the Bible. We also agree that a God who would send people to eternal torment for not believing in him is a petulant god not worth following. I'm just saying you can't judge a whole faith by one subset of believers, and it might be of some value to explore other versions of Christianity to see if they hold any meaning for you. I know there are churches out there who would agree to a large extent with what Roberta has said.

    Also, I read a very interesting book recently called Zealot, by Reza Aslan. It is written by a scholar of religion but it is not a religious or particularly difficult book, and it provides an interesting perspective on who Jesus may have really been.
     
  10. dopier

    dopier Active Member

    darkhorse, although I probably had questions, I did WANT to believe "salvation...through Jesus" concept. In fact, that was the reason I was kinda frustrated that I didn't have the passion at the mention of his as I thought I should at the time. Not the resurrection per se, but yes, it confirmed for me that the entire event took place. As for the resurrection itself, I don't necessarily believe it happened as written. I don't know exactly what happened, although I suspect there might have been something of quote "supernatural" taken place since I believe Jesus was probably of a highly spiritually evolved nature. But as you can imagine, that was the least of my problems back then because I was of the mindset that Jesus was supposedly God. Again I had doubts, but since I didn't have much to go with...
     

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