My Jesus Isn’t a Dead Jesus

There is little debate in scholarly and historical circles that the Jesus of the Bible actually lived.  What do we then do with that person of Jesus?  Some say that Jesus was a “good man”, a “prophet”, a “teacher, a rabbi”.  They place him in the same category as Siddhartha Gautama (Buddha), or Mohammed, or Ghandi.  They don’t deny his having lived, but many who say these things about him deny his being God. 

I ask this question…if Jesus claimed to be God but wasn’t, how could he be considered a good man?  And how could he have been a prophet if he himself didn’t even know who *he* was?  And what sort of rabbi lies about truth?  Either Jesus is God, as he claimed, or he isn’t.  He could not have been a good man, a prophet, or a teacher if he wasn’t.  If we are to be intellectually honest, we must admit that we cannot have it both ways.  We can’t embrace him on one hand and reject him on the other.  If  Jesus wasn’t God as he claimed, then he was a liar and led people horribly astray.  If he wasn’t who he claimed to be, then he was not only not a good man, but he was a very bad one.

The Apostles returned to their homes. But Mary Magdalene remained by the tomb, crying. Then she turned and saw a man who asked her why she was crying. Mary Magdalene soon realized that the man who was talking to her was Jesus Christ. Jesus had risen from death. Mary Magdalene was the first person to see the resurrected Jesus.  (John 20:10-18)

This verse in the Bible particularly strikes me as proof of the truth of what Jesus claimed to be.  If Jesus and his disciples cooked up the resurrection as a scheme, then they would have had Jesus first appear to men.  Women didn’t hold much of a place in that society, and certainly wouldn’t be considered good witnesses to an event.  And yet Jesus chose to reveal his risen self FIRST to a woman, and Mary Magdalene at that.  If Jesus wasn’t who he said he was, he picked a very socially unacceptable witness to his being raised from the dead.

But Jesus was a good man (a perfect one, in fact), and he was a prophet, and he was a teacher.  And he gave his life as the perfect and final sacrifice for our sins, for MY sins.  And to seal the deal to give his sacrifice the power to once and for all make us acceptable in the eyes of God the Father, he conquered death and was resurrected into life.

I rejoice because my Jesus isn’t a dead Jesus.

Happy Easter! 

… 

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About Lou (Linda)

Just a girl from Colorado trying to live life to God's glory with a certain amount of gusto! View all posts by Lou (Linda)

7 responses to “My Jesus Isn’t a Dead Jesus

  • Author

    Lovely. It’s good to remember the real reason we celebrate Easter.

  • Steven Carr

    ‘ If Jesus and his disciples cooked up the resurrection as a scheme, then they would have had Jesus first appear to men.’

    John 4:39 says ‘Many Samaritans from that city believed in him because of the women’s testimony.’

    I guess many people did find the testimony of a woman credible.

    For the Bible says that there were people who believed in Jesus because of a woman’s testimony.

    Of course, we now know that nobody found the testimony of a woman credible.

  • Lou (Linda)

    Jan,

    I hope your Easter across the pond is a wonderful one.

    Steven,

    Thanks for your input. However, I did not say that “nobody found the testimony of a woman credible”. I only said women weren’t considered good choices as witnesses in that time in history. And Mary Magdalene had previously been possessed of many demons which would probably have made her, in particular, a poor choice of a first witness to a made-up event. In actuality, her being a woman only adds to the credibility of the resurrection reports of Jesus.

  • Steven Carr

    Thank you for the good wishes.

    The Gospels considered women perfectly good witnesses. (See John 4)

    A glance at the gospels shows that the first person to announce the resurrection to the reader in the 4 Gospels was a young man, an angel of the Lord, two young men in dazzling clothes and Jesus himself.

    It seems the gospellers took no chances on people thinking women were the first to announce the resurrection and made sure that their readers knew that it was an angel of the Lord or Jesus himself who told the world that a resurrection had taken place.

    Suppose I did know that women were regarded as not credible witnesses. How would I use such a prejudice to persuade my readers of what I wanted them to believe?

    First I would have a women examine the evidence and come to a false conclusion – that the body had been taken by persons or persons unknown. The first-century reader would smile at the foolishness of a woman, always getting the wrong idea. No wonder women’s testimony was unreliable.

    Then I would have some men examine the evidence that the woman looked at. Naturally, they would do a more thorough job than an unreliable woman, and they would not jump to such a false conclusion that somebody had taken the body.

    Then I would have the woman’s unreliable testimony corrected by a man, or possibly by two angels, or even Jesus himself, who would explain why it was wrong for the woman to conclude that the body had been taken.

    So starting from a belief that a woman’s testimony was unreliable, and that somebody would use that prejudice to discredit ‘false’ claims about the body being taken, we have pretty much got to John’s Gospel as a perfect example of how a false story would be written about an alleged resurrection.

  • Steven Carr

    Why do you think Mary Magdalene was a credible witness, bearing in mind you yourself claim she was possessed by demons at one point.

    Why do we not have one word written by her? Why does not one person say ‘Mary said this and that to me’?

  • Lou (Linda)

    Steven,

    Welcome back. Thanks for your additional commentary and questions.

    Yes, the Gospels considered women to perfectly good witnesses, but the society of the day did not. Jesus (and the writers of the Gospels were disciples of his) treated women in a revolutionary new way, as equals. Middle Eastern society, Jewish society, did not treat women as equals. The words credible and unreliable are yours. I am stating that from the perspective of the society of the day, a woman was not the best choice of a witness. I have never stated that women, and Mary in particular, were unreliable or not credible, only that the society of the day would have perceived them as such.

    It is recorded that Jesus went on to reveal his risen self to the apostles and hundreds of other people before and during his ascension. I refer to Mary only because she was the first human recorded human witness.

    As to why we do not have one word written by Mary Magdalene perhaps like most women of the day she was not taught to read or write. However, the writings we don’t have aren’t important. It’s the ones that we do have that are.

    However, we have managed to get far away from the point of my post, which was to point out that Jesus could not have existed and been a good man if he claimed to be what he was not. Either he existed and was God incarnate, or he existed and was a fraudulant and horrible man, or he did not exist at all.

    I believe that he is fully God and fully man and that he was all he claimed to be and that he died for my sins and conquered death so that I might one day do the same, and I just wanted to share my thoughts about that on this Easter day.

  • Cousin Laurel

    Well said, Linda!!!!! CHRIST HAS RISEN!!!!!!! That is all one needs to know. HE HAS RISEN INDEED!!! and I know that my redeemer lives and hopefully others will, too. Easter blessings to you. xoxo

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