Will the Real Jesus Please "Rise?"
Jesus has always been a controversy. Nobody knows for sure what he looked like. The Jews don't believe in him. Neither do 23,000, 000 Americans, according to an article in our local newspaper. The Arabs, Muslims, Buddhists, Mohammedans, etc, have their own different faiths. None related to Christ. Then there is the similarity between the female "Krishna," and Christ as Tim Leedom's book, The Book Your Church Doesn't Want You to Read, states on page 183:
Both are held to be really god incarnate.
Both were incarnated and born of a woman.
The mother in each case was a holy virgin.
The father of each was a carpenter.
Both were of royal descent.
Each had the divine title of "Savior."
Both were without sin.
Both were crucified.
Both were crucified between two thieves.
Each taught of a great and final day of judgment.
On page 167 of the same book is a picture of a black Christ with short, cropped hair. Underneath is a comment from Archbishop George Augustus Stalling, Jr. He said, "Jesus was Afro-Semitic--black man." Stallings is Founder of the Imani Temples of African Catholic Congregation. He asked his Catholic congregation on Easter to burn the white pictures and replace them with black Christ's. He says the popular notion of a white Christ is a myth.--Quoting further on the same page: "The idea of a black Jesus is not novel nor unfounded. In 1894, Bishop Henry McNeal Turner of the African Methodist Episcopal Church said god was a Negro.
Most U.S. churches have a white, sometimes blue-eyed Jesus--which is totally fictitious."
On page 133 of Leedom's book is chapter by Kersey Graves titled "The World's Sixteen Crucified Saviors." The next page over list their names and countries.
In Worldwide, we were lead to believe Christ was homely, had short hair and a beard, and quite muscular.
Now, I present to you a quandary. Why is it that in near-death experiences, people have a vision of the same Christ that is popular in all Christian churches? He either beckons them, or comforts them. He fits the accepted description all Christians have of him. Kindly, beautiful face, long hair, clad in a flowing white robe and holding out both arms.
In the July 17th issue of our newspaper, there appeared an article about a man who suffered a brain aneurysm while jogging in a cemetery. Quoting from the article:
"His first thought was heatstroke. The temperature was nudging towards triple digits, yet he dismissed that notion.
"I crawled over to this tree," he said. He tried to calm himself sufficiently to lower his heart rate.
"The spiritual part of me was praying like a madman. I knew that I didn't want to go unconscious. I had to stay awake. Even though all these people were going by on the road, I knew that none of them was going to see me over in the cemetery."
Blood pooling around his brain, he believes, had induced an altered state of consciousness, a surrealistic sense of his surroundings. "Its like those films you see where it is misty. Nothing is clear, and you are moving through it. "
He closed his eyes momentarily. "When I opened my eyes, I saw a crowd of people standing there. My wife and the kids. The people from my church congregation. They were all holding their hands out to me."
In that throng, he said, he saw Christ. He felt himself being pulled away, as though by some unseen vortex.
The article went on further to state that he managed to make his way to a cemetery caretaker's building where an ambulance was summoned. He recovered after undergoing 14 hours of surgery. People told him it was nothing short of miraculous.
I just cite this one instance. There are many more near death experiences, and a lot of them involve the appearance of Christ, or an out of body state.
One of the first books I discovered on the Painful Truth was Thomas Paine's "Age of Reason." It taught me a lot. To exercise reason and logic when faced with something beyond understanding. It occurred to me that no doubt Christian near death experiences involved the likeness of Christ that hang on their church walls. But is that the real Christ?
When a Hindostan has a near death experience, does he see Krishna? Does an Arabian see Mahomet? Did an ancient Greek see Adonis? Did a Persian see Zoroaster? Does a Jew see Jehovah? And what does an atheist see?
The only logical conclusion I can see is this: When people have a near death incident, they react differently. It depends upon their background. If they are deeply religious, as apparently the man with the aneurysm was, their faith will have an impact on their experiences. I have read about frequent out-of-body experiences, where persons undergo serious life threatening operations and see themselves floating upward toward the ceiling. When they recover, this is what they vividly remember and will never forget for the rest of their lives. Christ was never mentioned. By the same token, the man in the cemetery is just as firmly convinced that Christ saved his life, and nothing will shake his faith for the rest of his life.
So logic and reason tells me that when people undergo a near death experience, the sub conscious mind reacts differently in a lot of cases. The Christian may see Christ: A patient may see himself floating overhead in the operating room: Jehovah may beckon to a devout Jew: An Arab may have a glimpse of Allah, etc.
But America is a Christian nation. Consequently we are Christ oriented and Christ indoctrinated. In early childhood we sang, "Jesus loves me this I know, for the bible tells me so." So when Christianity created the present popular image of Christ, we took for granted this is what Christ looks like. And this is the way the rest of the world's population should accept that image, and resign themselves to the fact that he alone is the Savior of all human beings.
So, applying reason and logic again, and discovering the many, many errancies in a bible claiming to be the word of God, I find this to be a stupid and asinine assumption.
I ask again: Will the REAL Jesus please rise?A more reasonable and logical question would be: Where is the proof that such person ever did exist?
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