Tag Archives: jesus

You’re Not Jesus

(In this essay when I use the word ‘Jesus’, I am not talking about the thing they often call Jesus…the idol-thing religions will build and drag around to crush or control people…the thing individuals use to placate their egos, but the Free and Living Jesus Who can be neither institutionalized nor industrialized nor appropriated in any way to be used as a tool.)

You’d imagine it would be simple…people realizing that they are not Jesus. However, it doesn’t seem to happen that way. People just can’t seem to stop from thinking that they’re Jesus or some form of Jesus.

Now, I’m not talking about the mentally ill. For some of them, believing they are Jesus is all they’ve got, bless their battered minds. No, I’m talking about everyone else.

There are the obvious ones…the celebrities, of course. By celebrities, I not only mean the entertainment people but also politicians, mega-church preachers, “motivational” speakers, royalty; all those sort. These people live within the illusion of social hierarchical being where they are seduced into believing the constant accolades in their lives are not simply the results of the cultural worship of mammon, deceptive marketing and the support of various political and capitalist systems that make use of their celebrity, but something real and eternal. They are worshipped by crowds but only in the same way the ancients, to calm their angst, drew a face on a stick and then worshipped that. But, this is not Jesus, not even close to Jesus.

Then there are the subtle less grandiose ways people believe they are Jesus. I see it all the time in their interpretations of the stories handed down through the New Testament. They apply their own selves to the stories, covering over some things, eliminating important facts, taking the stories out of the context of place and time and oral tradition, all to become Jesus. They superimpose their own thoughts, feelings and personal deficiencies upon Jesus, ignoring His Nature. They replace Jesus with themselves to make Him personally useful to them. This is the main reason why Jesus is always portrayed as such an dull goof in movies and shows.

To firmly establish who is not Jesus, (or even like Jesus), let’s look at what we know about some of the Characteristics of Jesus:

  1. He had no respect for or even need of money or material possessions. Matthew 6:26

If you have even an ounce of this need or want, you’re not Jesus.

  1. He refused to placate the elite, (who would have definitely welcomed the use of Him.)

If you are quite able and willing to placate the elite, you’re not Jesus.

  1. He refused to be a part of the hierarchical social structure. John 6:15

If you could not refuse to be socially exalted, (humblebrag is the acceptance of social exaltation), you’re not Jesus.

  1. He could look past a face and see what was in a mind. Matthew 12:25 Luke 5:22 Luke 11:17 etc.

If you are stuck at the face, you’re not Jesus.

  1. He could see past, present and future. John 1:48 Matthew 26:25

If you do not live outside of time, you’re not Jesus.

  1. He could heal bodies and minds.

If you cannot keep sickness from even yourself let alone others, you’re not Jesus.

  1. Jesus was a human being, but yet alone and apart from the constructs of human beings. He existed upon the earth in a place He called The Kingdom of God, and He embodied the Kingdom. John 18:36 John 8:23

If you have a solid place of belonging within the constructs of this world, you’re not Jesus.

  1. He existed well beyond the unhealthy social conformities of his time and place.

If you live as part of any ‘group mentality’ of your time, even a supposed progressive group, you’re not Jesus.

 

When reading the stories of Jesus it’s important to remember three things:

  1. These are oral anecdotes about a Holy Presence in a particular place and time that were written down by people who were not actually there, (with the exception of maybe parts of the Book of John), who had no experience of the Presence and who wrote with a political-religious bias. (Even the people who walked beside Him struggled to understand Jesus.)

 

  1. As such anecdotes they cannot be whole. They are often missing details and intent. They do not come with any understanding of the verbal hermeneutic subtleties from which they originated. They provide only hints of Jesus’ sense of humour, and His wit. Ultimately, these skeletal stories are far from easy to properly interpret, and cannot be analyzed with any accuracy without looking at them as clues to a much larger puzzle.

 

  1. You’re not Jesus, so when reading these stories, don’t believe for a moment that He is anything like you. Think outside of yourself and look to God the One and Only for inspiration, and remember that Jesus was not laying out dogma for a church. He was trying to save the stupid blind souls that were in front of Him.

 

What’s So Good About Good Friday?

It’s Good Friday, and I never really liked it. Even as a child, I could never see what was good about it. It was a tragic day. A horrible day. A day of mourning. And now that it’s become ‘a thing’ to re-enact the crucifixion, it’s even worse. All those so-called Christians indulging in what is essentially sadomasochistic porn, and not even bothering to get the nails in the correct places.

“Don’t you know?” I want to scream at them. “That’s not what it’s about! It’s not about what they did physically! That’s nothing. None of that matters. They couldn’t hurt Him. It’s what they did spiritually. Can’t you see? It’s what they did to themselves and to this world. They were given a great Gift…a wonderful miraculous Gift, and they rejected Him. They rejected truth, love, progress, faith, life, potency, God. They rejected everything we needed for this world to become a better place and all because He interfered with their petty wants and desires…because He challenged their convenient self-aggrandizing identities…because He was proof that their fabricated self-serving narratives were wrong.” That’s exactly what I want to scream at them.

And when I look around and see people worshiping money and class, clinging to man-made politically motivated dogmas, even using the name of Jesus to placate their own soul-eating egos, I wonder, would it be any different today? If He came back as He was, not as many imagine Him to be, would anyone recognize the precious Gift or would it all be the same thing over again? Would people look down at Him for not driving a fancy car or being a botox-filled celebrity on Letterman? Would they turn away from every wonderful thing He offered because none of it made the list of Oprah’s favourite things? Would they ridicule Him because His clothes were not as fancy as Kate Middleton’s? Would they believe He was not a real man of God because, unlike Osteen, Jake, Hagee, Robertson, He didn’t make Himself rich by exploiting religion? Would they do it again? Would they throw away their only hope once more? Would they?

A Few Facts About Jesus

-born to an unwed mother in a sexually oppressive society where both mother and child would have been stigmatized (whether you believe in Immaculate Conception or not, this was His social status)

-born into the lower class of a highly structured class system

-shunned wealth and the wealthy

-shunned power and the powerful

-spoke out for the poor and helpless

-chose truth over making friends

-most of the friends He did make were from the bottom rungs of society

-publicly challenged social injustices and hypocrisies

-publicly challenged oppressive religious traditions and rituals

-publicly challenged social hierarchy

-never bowed to a king, high priest, military leader or wealthy official

-never allowed them to crown Him as an idolized king

-never made alliances with or manipulated people for political or personal gain

-never tried to sell God as a commodity

-was questioned, ridiculed and scapegoated for being from the ‘wrong side of the tracks’

-never turned away from God because more people would like Him and it would make things a whole lot easier

(If He were here today, would you side with Him?)

 

 

The Horrible Things They Still Do To Jesus

Of course, it must have all started near the beginning, but where exactly? I suppose, at first, it was only in small ways—Peter using selective memories of Jesus to ease his immense guilt, and then after him, Paul, a reformed torturer/murderer using Jesus to try and purify himself.  Certainly, it gained real momentum when the new political machine they called the Catholic Church was born, and the crucified man became the mascot. It was genius marketing really—playing on such deep fears, deep shame, and deep perversions. A man unclothed, broken, beaten, and permanently staked up for public display. Oh, the emotions such an image could evoke!

Sometimes I think of what it takes to physically manufacture such a thing. These days, a slave-worker in Asian likely makes most of them, hammering the little nails into the crucified man statue—day after day—tap, tap, tap—thousands of nails into thousands of hands and thousands of feet. I wonder if she’ll ever realize that the nails should actually go into the wrists, and not the hands.

And then there was a little Polish boy I babysat as a teen. One day he pointed to the crucifix on the wall, giggled devilishly, and declared, “The Lord is barren.” At first, I couldn’t figure out what he was talking about in his less than perfect understanding of the English language, but then I realized he meant that the little crucified man was without clothes. The crucifix was a bit of naughty pornography for this boy. Out of the mouths of babes, eh? Suffering-pornography. That’s why I never will watch The Passion of the Christ. It’s suffering-pornography.

And then all because of a fluke generated by politics and the marriage problems of elite inbreds, the Church split, and Protestants were created. Eventually that little switcheroo caused branches to form in all directions…and oh, what directions…directions that, henceforth, resulted in my Sunday school teacher excitedly waving the ‘miracle photo.’ It seems she had gone to a special presentation organized by the church. The key-note speaker was a woman who had been privy to a stupendous, incredible, marvelous miracle! What started out as just an ordinary photo being taken of her and her husband turned into so much more. For when that ordinary photo was developed, POOF! Jesus appeared in the picture next to them!  The Sunday school teacher let us all have a good look at the evidence. Sure enough there was a man, a woman and a guy in a Jesus costume. I was just a kid, but even I knew that was not Jesus. What does it take to perpetrate such a crime? Thinking up the scheme, dressing up as Jesus, setting a price for the photo, going on a preaching circuit, turning Jesus into a bold faced lie—it’s horrible! And this was sanctioned by the church.

And that brings us to the Jews, oy vey! Being part Jewish myself, I really hate to have to have to say this but…added to all the horrible things being done to Jesus is a group of right-wing Jews trying to bake Him into a flavourless bit of unleavened bread. Paper Jesus, (no way as fun as Paper Mario)—a flat two-dimensional Jesus who was a good kosher boy, who wanted to FIGHT! the Romans, who was not particularly amazing in any way except in that he was a Jew. These people even claim that Jews had nothing whatsoever to do with the crucifixion. Well, that’s not true. Some Jews were obviously involved in the crucifixion, but not because they were Jews, but because they were assholes, and assholism knows no cultural nor ethnic boundaries. In nature, God created assholes at the bottom, but in man’s topsy-turvy world, assholes are usually at the top, and it was assholes at the top who were responsible for the crucifixion.

So why would these right-wing Jews have such an interest in Jesus? As it appears to me, it’s a narrative specifically designed to further galvanize the support of the right-wing Christians, who already do their own horrible things to Jesus. It’s meant to correlate and control all of the horrible things done to Jesus in the name of politics, power, money and racism.

Oh, Jesus H. Christ! Isn’t it about time You put an end to this nonsense?

…but praying aside for now, Jesus is so incredibly complicated that it’s very difficult to explain just what He is. So instead let me explain what He is not.

Jesus is nobody’s:

  • self-serving idol
  • political pawn
  • money machine
  • plasticine man
  • security blanket
  • excuse
  • medallion
  • camouflage
  • costume
  • justification
  • surety
  • mascot
  • collateral
  • military uniform
  • ‘get out of jail free’ card
  • influence peddler
  • suffering-pornography
  • a simple easy to swallow sugary elixir
  • free pre-paid ticket to Heaven
  • name-dropping name
  • fraternity or sorority pin
  • self-serving lie

…and to try and recreate Him into any of these things is just plain horrible!

Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are entering the kingdom of God ahead of you. For John came to you to show you the way of righteousness, and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes did. And even after you saw this, you did not repent and believe him.

Matthew 21:28-31