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Teachings of Jesus - Sermon on the Mount

Teachings of Jesus in his Sermon on the Mount  

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You guys are forgetting about David Blaine......

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There is hope for him though. He seems to like Jesus after all. :)

 

Actually many people (from different religions or atheists even) like Jesus or at least his teachings.

Things go awfully wrong when you say that he is God, the only son of God.

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Well, actually I most like the parts that seem to me to be most wrong. That's pretty much why I am persuing education in this direction. It is rather pointless for me to say anything like "I believe the Bible to be infallible (or whatever)" because I understand it so little. I understand a little more all the time. The Bible's authority, if any, is not gained through appeal to divine authorship. It is actually the other way around. God is by definition the "author" of all truth.

Persuing "education" in the Bible... you may as well persue education in The Lord of the Rings. The fantasy is the same, one's just pimped as reality when it's even more unbelievable than hobbits and magic rings. In a thousand years I wonder if there will be a religion based on the LotR books. "It's written right here, the truth! Praise be to Frodo!"

 

he seems to love to quote physics like Richard Feynman completely out of context.

Please present a few of these misquotes and their proper contexts (as you see them), as I am interested to see your evidence.

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Please present a few of these misquotes and their proper contexts (as you see them), as I am interested to see your evidence.

It is really off-topic, but it was in regards to "If you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don't understand quantum mechanics." I happened to watch both the original quote and Dawkins use of it back to back in videos freely available on the web. It must be nice to be so arrogant.

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It is really off-topic, but it was in regards to "If you think you understand quantum mechanics, you don't understand quantum mechanics." I happened to watch both the original quote and Dawkins use of it back to back in videos freely available on the web. It must be nice to be so arrogant.

 

Dawkins use of it:

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You guys are forgetting about David Blaine......

 

....and Darwin even though I don't follow that. :)

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Dawkins use of it:

Dawkins uses it often. In that video he gets it pretty right. Feyman certainly doesn't mean we can't understand it (like it is too complex). It is more like we just don't want to--it is strange to us. Feyman himself though is partially responsible for many understanding it quite naturally now--in that sense the quote is pretty much irrelevant now.

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I don't consider myself a Christian, but those are very good principles to live by.

 

agreed.

 

 

The Silmarilion kind of sucks, but I don't blame J.R.R. Tolkein. I don't think it was his intention to have it published in it current form. It is interesting, especially after reading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, but on its own as literature it is pretty poor. I really enjoyed C.S.Lewis' Till We Have Faces though it is certainly not epic (in the sense of grand scale.)

 

The gospels do not intend to be historical biographies, just like Genesis is not offering a theory of biological development. We should ask about the accuracy of both, but that evidence doesn't have to be solely external. A single historical record can be accurate by itself, though we would certainly wish to have independent collaboration.

 

I could point out that many of the parts of the Bible, such as the gospels aren't excellent literature. They would be rather poor fiction if they are not true.

 

 

 

I read that C.S Lewis book too. It was okay, though the charcter of a perfect, both in beauty and spirit, girl is pretty poor. All the characters were rather black and white come to think of it.

 

They come off as if the author is judging them.

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You have your set of beliefs, I have mine. I won't try to prove that mine are better than yours, because that would be foolishness.
Again you use my vocabulary. I am happy we are getting somewhere.

 

The problem with your "beliefs," Alessandro, is that you are quoting the gnostic gospels as if they are legitimate, alternative sources of credible information. That's like using a tabloid newspaper against an authentic piece of journalism.

 

Even gnostic scholars date the gnostic gospels to second century at best. If you even read them as literature, whether you believe in the canonical gospels or not, they are radically different.

 

New Testament Jesus spoke of sin and redemption from sin. Gnostic Jesus spoke of enlightenment and spiritual awakening.

 

The other problem is that you have a misunderstanding of Christianity and what it teaches, and a misunderstanding of Jesus and what he taught. More on this below.

 

What happens if she tells you one day she's learned that Allah wants her to pray several times a day... Will you respect her decision?
You can't force anyone to believe anything.

 

if you believe the Bible holds up to scrutiny, why are there so many different factions of Christianity? Would not every Christian have the exact same thoughts?
There are so many factions because the Bible was removed from the "authority" of the Catholic church, and every Christian is allowed to read and interpret it for themselves. Some are more apt at Greek and Hebrew and cultural studies than others, and are better at exegeting the texts than someone who just reads it in a translation, without compensating for exegetical considerations such as contemporary culture of the text.

 

People have different fringe beliefs, but everyone agrees on one thing: Jesus of Nazareth.

 

Actually, broadening it out, if the Bible is as 100% consistent, would not Jews, Christians AND Muslims all be united behind it? These three would not be distinguishable by name, they would all simply be Bible followers.
(1) Jews use strictly the Old Testament (first half) of the Bible, they do not use the Bible.

(2) Christians use the Bible.

(3) Muslims use the Bible, and then add a totally separate book of Mohammad on top. It is the book of Mohammad that is inconsistent with the consistency of the Bible.

 

Once again, it appears that your misunderstanding of the subject is the only thing that is hindering here. When the facts are revealed for what they are, it very clearly and easily dispells any confusion.

 

I loved your last 2 sentences: people who believe they can sell everything because they are clever with words.
I agree! Excellent way to put it.
This is my point made once again. I don't even have to use hypothetical arguments or situations, you are literally feeding all of this straight to me to illustrate to you.

 

SubZero spreads some misinformation (as I have displayed immediately above), and you all jump to say "Huzzah!," without any analysis or critical evaluation of the information.

 

Misinformation is spread like rampant, when you simply need to study the subject.

 

I have no doubt that Richard Dawkins knows a lot more about the subject matter than you could ever hope to...
Dawkins is not a manuscript scholar. Dawkins is not a theologian. Dawkins knows a very mediocre amount about the subject matter, and there are thousands of people that know infinitely more than he does. As a matter of fact, his book is so fallicious that it has sparked an entire wave of rebuttals.

 

It's a bit sciency
Actually, this is the chief argument AGAINST his book- that he has gone off the deep end. He has abandoned sound reason, and has become what is now being called a "fundamentalist atheist." His first chapter of his book sets this tone, proclaiming "very religious anti-religionism". It is extremely correct to say that his work is downright irrational, as has been pointed out over and over again.

 

Let me make a more pointed remark- even many ATHEISTS have discarded this book and distanced themselves from Dawkins, due to his fundamentalist-like rantings.

 

-3nigma

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I'm not going to type some really long explanation about what I believe about the text 3nigma typed up. However, put this into consideration: from the 3 possible conclusions about Jesus' life on earth, he most certainly has to be the Holy Spirit. I say this as a follower of Christ because in the Bible, there are references to God's work with many people. God helped those who were poor and those in pain or suffering. There's no doubt to that, because of the extensive stories in the Bible. So saying that he was a lunatic or a liar are both pretty much obsolete. God came through Jesus to do work on earth so that many abroad could see the power of God and realize what he did for them. If Jesus was some lunatic man or a liar, how is it that he came out of a tomb 3 days later with marks on his hands and feet from his crucifiction? Take all of what I said into consideration and you can see how we can rule out 2 of the 3 conclusions about Jesus Christ. There, thats my 2 cents...

 

 

So I can basically make up any old cobblers and people like you will believe it in 2000 years?

 

Oh (your) god this is so cool.

 

Do I need to write it down on regular paper, then do the old coffee stained trick I did to create medeival documents in third year of secondary school? Do I need a large wooden box that looks ancient? Where should I bury the box?

 

This is awesome, I'm off to set to work on my religion :D:D

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Actually many people (from different religions or atheists even) like Jesus or at least his teachings.

Things go awfully wrong when you say that he is God, the only son of God.

Jesus said he is God, the only Son of God.

 

So how good is Jesus, then?

 

C.S. Lewis put it this way:

"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him:
“I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.” That is the one thing we must not say. A man who said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher.
He would either be a lunatic — on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg — or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God: or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God.
But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.

Jesus is either:

(A.) Lying, therefore worthless

(B.) Insane, therefore worthless

(C.) Telling the truth

 

So which is it?

 

(We have already discussed the fourth option, that we don't have an "accurate record of Jesus," but this has been refuted conclusively, as displayed during this thread).

 

Jesus had a very strong message. It was so strong that he was killed for it.

 

He said that there is a God.

He said that this God is a righteous and just God, and a loving God.

 

He said that every human is in a state of alienation from God, because people reject him and live their lives going against God's ways, and pursue evil in their deepest innermost parts of their heart. For God, the punishment for evil is death. God, because he is righteous and just, demands a punishment for the evil that people perpetuate.

 

However, God is also a God of love

 

Jesus said that he is the son of this God. Because of Jesus' divinity, he lived the 100% perfect life, that no one else would be able to do. Because he lived a perfect life, he did not need to bear the punishment for evil, which is death.

 

God loves the world very much. He doesn't want it to die in evil, and he wants to bring people back into relationship with him.

 

However, because God is fully just and righteous, evil must be paid for- he cannot allow it to just go free.

 

Jesus said that he will be the punishment. He will die an excruciating death, in order that anyone who would put their trust in him and live in his ways, would not have to bear that punishment. God provided Jesus as a substitution in our place, to satisfy the justice, and yet extend his great love for us.

 

After being buried, Jesus' displayed his divinity by being resurrected from death. He also displayed how his life and death paid the ultimate sacrifice by defeating evil and death altogether, and that he would not die.

 

Jesus said that if you believe in what he said, and put your trust in him and that he is who he says he is, you would be adopted into God's family, embraced by God who wants to be with you.

 

THIS is Jesus' message. His Sermon on the Mount is his teachings on how to live according to his ways in the Kingdom of God (or "rule" of God in your life).

 

Jesus said to give up your old life. Give up your life of pursuing self-centered things and going against God's ways.

He said believe in him. He said that he is the only way to bridging the gap to restoring relationship with God. If you put your trust in him, and believe that he is who he says he is, you will live with him in relationship forever.

 

This is his message. We can accept it or deny it.

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This is his message. We can accept it or deny it.

 

True, this is his message.

 

But what god did he mean?

There are thousands of gods in thousands of religions. How do we know which one(s) is/are real?

 

The answer: we don't. :)

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what god did he mean?

There are thousands of gods in thousands of religions.

Jesus was referring to the God as displayed in the Old Testament, who claims to be the one and only true God of the universe.

 

I'm not saying you have to believe it's true, but I am saying without question that this is the God that Jesus was referring to.

 

But the topic of this discussion is Jesus, and his message. If Jesus is real, and if this is his message, then this is what we are left with.

 

Jesus cannot be accepted as merely a "good teacher." He is either worthless to be cast aside, or he is who he says he is, and what he says is true.

 

But it is you that has to make the decision. Jesus leaves it up to us to put our trust in him and who he says he is, and what he did as a substitution for our place.

 

This is his message. We can accept or deny it.

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True, this is his message.

 

But what god did he mean?

There are thousands of gods in thousands of religions. How do we know which one(s) is/are real?

 

The answer: we don't. :)

 

 

All those "Gods" are the same.

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But what god did he mean?

There are thousands of gods in thousands of religions.

All those "Gods" are the same.
Here is an interesting story.

 

Paul of Tarsus converted from Judaism to Christianity. He was traveling in Greece, and came to Athens. He came to the marketplace and was discussing Jesus with some of the local Epicurean and Stoic philosophers. Jesus was new at that time (rather than "old" compared to the modern ear), so they were interested in hearing what Paul was talking about.

 

Paul went to the Acropolis, and saw many altars to many 'gods.' So he met with the people there. Luke of Antioch recorded the events, and Paul said this-

"Men of Athens, I notice that you are very religious in every way, for as I was walking along I saw your many shrines. And one of your altars had this inscription on it: ‘To an Unknown God.’"

These people were so religious with so many 'gods,' that they even made an altar for an "unknown god" that they maybe missed, and still wanted to honor. Paul goes on, to say:

"This God, whom you worship without knowing, is the one I’m telling you about.

 

“He is the God who made the world and everything in it. Since he is Lord of heaven and earth, he doesn’t live in man-made temples, and human hands can’t serve his needs—for he has no needs. He himself gives life and breath to everything, and he satisfies every need... he created all the nations throughout the whole earth. He decided beforehand when they should rise and fall, and he determined their boundaries.

 

“His purpose was for the nations to seek after God and perhaps feel their way toward him and find him—though he is not far from any one of us. For in him we live and move and exist. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ And since this is true, we shouldn’t think of God as an idol designed by craftsmen from gold or silver or stone, or an image formed by the art or imagination of man.

 

“God overlooked people’s ignorance about these things in earlier times, but now he commands everyone everywhere to repent of their sins and turn to him. For he has set a day for judging the world with justice by the man he has appointed, and he proved to everyone who this is by raising him from the dead.”

Paul here is referring to Jesus.

 

The account ends with the following:

When they heard Paul speak about the resurrection of the dead, some laughed in contempt, but others said, “We want to hear more about this later.” That ended Paul’s discussion with them, but some joined him and became believers. Among them were Dionysius, a member of the council, a woman named Damaris, and others with them.

This is who Jesus said he was. Some denied him, others followed him. But these are the only options left to us.

 

Here is what Jesus himself said:

“For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him.

 

“There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged, for not believing in God’s one and only Son. And the judgment is based on this fact: God’s light came into the world, but people loved the darkness more than the light, for their actions were evil. All who do evil hate the light and refuse to go near it, for fear their sins will be exposed. But those who do what is right come to the light so others can see that they are doing what God wants."

Jesus left no room for being on the fence. He left no room for merely saying he is a good teacher, or a good person.

 

He said that he is the one and only way to have a relationship with the one and only God. He is either a counterfeit, or he is serious.

 

Jesus said to give up the darkness, and welcome the light. He said that he is the "Light of the World." He made these bold claims, but it is left up to us to accept or reject it.

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Jesus said to give up the darkness, and welcome the light. He said that he is the "Light of the World." He made these bold claims, but it is left up to us to accept or reject it.

 

And I reject his claims for more veritable ones

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That's your decision to make. But bear in mind that there are men and women in every field of academia and science, that acknowledge that Jesus' claims are veritable ones. Just make sure you dig deep and hard for who Jesus is and what he said, because as this forum has shown, there is an unlimited amount of fake misinformation spewed out there.

 

If Jesus' claims are legitimate, it is not an issue to take haphazardly or lackadaisically. Set aside the time to find out, it could prove to be the most crucial thing to devote any time to.

 

Jesus made bold claims. Everything he said is either nonsense or the truth, but he seriously cannot be taken on the fence. Another thing Jesus said is "Anyone that is not for me is against me," so there is no middle-ground as far as he is concerned. You have to either reject him altogether, or accept him altogether.

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All his messages of love are practical whether he was the son of god or not. Maybe he didn't leave room for thinking he is merely a human teacher, but that doesn't mean he wasn't.

 

 

 

And I simply can't accept some of his teachings when it comes to god and religion. The idea that people aren't saved because they belief in a different god is horrible. If you believe hes the son of god and all that he said is true, your believing that all Jews are damned. Clearly a rediculas, horrible belief. It isn't in line with his teachings of love and forgiveness at all.

 

 

 

He also asks everyone to belief in a vengeful, violent god. The old testament....

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Jesus said he is God, the only Son of God.

 

So why did you start this topic by writing:

 

"For conversation's sake, let's assume Jesus of Nazareth was real, and that the New Testament accurately renders his life and teachings."

 

As if you wanted to tell us only about his moral teachings (which, as I said, can be accepted by many of us)?

 

And besides, we are all God according to the Advaita Vedanta: Tat Tvam Asi

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tat_Tvam_Asi

 

 

All his messages of love are practical whether he was the son of god or not. Maybe he didn't leave room for thinking he is merely a human teacher, but that doesn't mean he wasn't.

And I simply can't accept some of his teachings when it comes to god and religion. The idea that people aren't saved because they belief in a different god is horrible. If you believe hes the son of god and all that he said is true, your believing that all Jews are damned. Clearly a rediculas, horrible belief. It isn't in line with his teachings of love and forgiveness at all.

He also asks everyone to belief in a vengeful, violent god. The old testament....

 

QFE

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(1) Jews use strictly the Old Testament (first half) of the Bible, they do not use the Bible.

Oh, ok. That makes perfect sense. No, not really.

(2) Christians use the Bible.

The entire thing? There's parts of the Bible you'll *never* hear read at Sunday church. I think if your typical "I like the good parts" Christian trimmed out all the parts they don't like, they'd end up, like the Jews, not using the Bible.

(3) Muslims use the Bible, and then add a totally separate book of Mohammad on top. It is the book of Mohammad that is inconsistent with the consistency of the Bible.

The Bible has no consistency. Translated wrong, interpreted wrong, that's not really what it means. Excuses, excuses.

SubZero spreads some misinformation (as I have displayed immediately above), and you all jump to say "Huzzah!," without any analysis or critical evaluation of the information.

What misinformation?

Misinformation is spread like rampant, when you simply need to study the subject.

I'm glad you understand how religion works!

Dawkins is not a manuscript scholar. Dawkins is not a theologian. Dawkins knows a very mediocre amount about the subject matter, and there are thousands of people that know infinitely more than he does. As a matter of fact, his book is so fallicious that it has sparked an entire wave of rebuttals.

People issue rebuttals against everything. If you wrote a book about your personal beliefs, you can bet other Christians would not necessarily agree with it. Dawkins is a nice big target since Christians, and religious people in general, are genuinely afraid of what he says. The more they whine and bend words and issues, the more silly they look.

 

Actually, this is the chief argument AGAINST his book- that he has gone off the deep end. He has abandoned sound reason, and has become what is now being called a "fundamentalist atheist." His first chapter of his book sets this tone, proclaiming "very religious anti-religionism". It is extremely correct to say that his work is downright irrational, as has been pointed out over and over again.

In The God Delusion he credits the term "radical atheist" to Douglas Adams. He is very anti-religion, and it's a good stance to have. Religion overlays common sense and human instincts with a pretend story to explain it all, and then tries to wrestle those senses away. It's an unnecessary thing, and it causes a lot of strife and grief in the world.

Let me make a more pointed remark- even many ATHEISTS have discarded this book and distanced themselves from Dawkins, due to his fundamentalist-like rantings.

Such as who?

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There's parts of the Bible you'll *never* hear read at Sunday church. I think if your typical "I like the good parts" Christian trimmed out all the parts they don't like, they'd end up, like the Jews, not using the Bible.
You are correct. The modern American church is guilty of what is called the "seeker-sensitive" movement, and the only part read on Sunday is "topical preaching," such as topics of God's love and happy thoughts. This is an attempt to be "sensitive" to "seekers," who might stroll in on a Sunday morning, so they don't want to preach the tough parts.

 

However, this is a modern development that is not consistent with historical Christianity. Historical Christianity utilizes what is referred to as "expository preaching," where a preacher systematically goes through the entire book, cover to cover.

 

You are correct in your assessment of modern, faulty Christianity. Just bear in mind that this is not what historic or proper Christianity is about, nor is it what ever Christian believes in.

 

The Bible has no consistency.
This site was a lot of fun putting my exegetical skills to work.

 

With even minimal exegesis, these passages are not contradictory. The author of the site himself even says that these are not contradictory, they are merely "inconsistent." However, with looking at every one for more than 2 seconds, it is extremely evident the differences.

 

The Bible is not one book, it is 66 "books" by over 40 authors, in multiple languages. "Inconsistencies" are actually corroborative of the factuality of the Bible.

 

In a court of law, if there are 6 witnesses to a crime, each will give testimony. If all of them said the same story word for word, it would be fishy, to say the least. But if they all reveal different facts from different perspectives, even some that appear to be "inconsistent," they always are reconcilable, because the source is always the same. The fact that there are differences in accounts is actual an argument used to corroborate the Bible, not disprove it.

 

The tiniest bit of exegesis, again, eliminates every single one. The problem is, again, going to the wrong, uneducated source on the subject. See my comments on Dawkins as an example of this, below.

 

Religion overlays common sense and human instincts with a pretend story to explain it all, and then tries to wrestle those senses away.
This is exactly correct. Which is why it's so scary that Dawkins has become religious in his anti-religiousness- it has overlayed his common sense and human instincts with a pretend story to explain it all. "Life will all be great as long as all religion is wiped out." "The world will finally be free if religion is wiped out." etc.

 

even many ATHEISTS have discarded this book and distanced themselves from Dawkins, due to his fundamentalist-like rantings.
Such as who?

Michael Ruse, Professor of Philosophy- "The God Delusion makes me embarrassed to be an atheist"

Lawrence Krauss, physicist - "[Dawkins] should have continued to play to his strengths"

H. Allen Orr, biologist, professor

etc.

 

Dawkins is a biologist. He is bad at physics. He is horrid at philosophy. He is terrible at New Testament criticism.

 

He said that the book of "Hebrews" was written by Paul of Tarsus. That is basic elementary New Testament 101: Paul didn't write Hebrews. Everyone knows that, and nobody would try and say that Paul wrote it for even a moment.

 

Find yourself some really good sources for New Testament criticism, like people that know the New Testament.

 

So why did you start this topic by writing:

"For conversation's sake, let's assume Jesus of Nazareth was real, and that the New Testament accurately renders his life and teachings."

As if you wanted to tell us only about his moral teachings (which, as I said, can be accepted by many of us)?

I said "his life and teachings," not his moral teachings.

 

The topic of this thread is Jesus' life and teachings. Jesus taught that he was God. He taught that the one and only way to a relationship with the one and only God is through him.

 

I simply can't accept some of his teachings when it comes to god and religion. The idea that people aren't saved because they belief in a different god is horrible.
Let's just say, hypothetically for a moment, that one God is real, one and only. Whether you believe it or not, let's just hypothetically for a moment assume this is the case.

 

If there is a God, and there is only one true God, why would anyone be saved by worshiping a different, fake God?

 

This isn't "horrible," it's common sense. If what Jesus is saying is true, then this is common sense, it's not horrible whatsoever. However, you are free to disagree with Jesus, but you can't say that his situation he proposes is "horrible." It's just simple.

 

If you are married to a specific woman, you don't get credit for just expressing love to any woman. It has to be the woman you're married to. Otherwise, the opposite happens- you get in trouble for loving a woman that is NOT the woman that you're married to.

 

It's not a perfect analogy, because in this instance nobody is "married to" or "committed to" God, but it serves to make the simple point. You don't get credit for just believing and worshiping some fake God, if indeed God is real. The opposite happens. You only get credit for worshiping the real God.

 

It isn't in line with his teachings of love and forgiveness at all...

He also asks everyone to belief in a vengeful, violent god.

Jesus' teaching is that God is loving and forgiving. But if God were only loving and forgiving, then heaven would also be full of murderers, rapists, and criminals, who have no remorse or regret.

 

What Jesus presents is a very consistent message. God is loving and forgiving, but he is also just and righteous.

 

No matter where you go on the world, regardless of society, culture, time period, or anything else- every society has a concept of justice, and punishment for wrongdoings. God punishes evil. God punishes sin. It's as simple and fundamental as that. You may call it vengeful, but for God (and most ordinary people) it's simple justice.

 

For God, the punishment for evil is separation from him. He is pure good, and cannot be in the presence of evil.

 

The most important part of this is that it DOES NOT END HERE. This is not the end of the description. The most important part is that God is a loving and forgiving God. His love and forgiveness is so great that he extended that to humanity even in the midst of their going against him, in order that he can bring people into relationship with him.

 

Rather than give people justice, Jesus took it on himself instead. Jesus did that for you, so that you would not have to bear the punishment for sin.

 

God is perfectly just, but his love has curved his justice on Jesus instead, substitutionally in our place. Not only does Jesus take off all of our bad baggage, but he gives us all of his good baggage- he makes us in right-standing with God. He gives us a clean slate, and credits his perfect-sinless-life to us.

 

Here is a YouTube video that I found, that illustrates this very well in 3 minutes. It is very cheesy, but it uses cheesy humor to make a point.

 

 

Jesus did all the work. The only thing left is to throw away life's bad baggage, and believe that Jesus is telling the truth.

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The topic of this thread is Jesus' life and teachings.

 

Nope. The title you gave to this topic is "Teachings of Jesus - Sermon on the Mount"

 

Can you be coherent at least with that?

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You're feathers are getting ruffled a bit, Allessandro.

 

You are correct, the original post began with his Sermon on the Mount. However, as has been demonstrated by this thread, the teachings of Jesus cannot be taken a la carte like an all-you-can-eat-buffet. His Sermon on the Mount was one part of his greater teaching, which is what is being discussed.

 

We are not straying radically off topic, like many other of these threads. We have not derailed into tangents, even though many people have tried to. We have taken a step backward and seen the bigger picture of the puzzle that it all fits into, of Jesus and his message.

 

Jesus' message is about sin, about salvation, and eternal life. Jesus' taught that he was God, and the only son of the only God. His Sermon on the Mount is about how to live and walk out life with Jesus as the King over life, and entering into the "ruleship" or Kingdom of God. He wants to reconcile man from his self-centered life to God, and to have an eternal relationship in eternal life with us.

 

If Jesus were a mild teacher to pick-and-mix from, he wouldn't have the historical end that he had. Jesus was so bold he was crucified. The same is true today. He says to give up the life of darkness and pursuit of ungodliness, and to believe that he is who he says he is, and be in relationship and fellowship with him forever. The rest lies on us- we either crucify him as a liar, or accept him for what he says he is. But every person has to decide where they stand.

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And lets say, hypothetically, that their is a perfect god, who could not be more just or loving or understanding.

 

 

Do you think he would reward people based on whether they worship him or not? Do you think he wouldn't realize that what religion you are is based on your surroundings? Do you think he would have less understanding of human nature then any modern man that realizes that people cling to Christianity for hope of a better world? Do you think he would put anything above how they acted?

 

And why would someone be damned for rape, killing, etc when its largely because they're the product of terrible conditions. Who's to say anyone would be different if they came from the same background.

 

 

 

The traditional concept of justice and free will are myths, I think. And if free will is real, then god would have to use an extremely complex algorithm to determine who goes to heaven or not.

 

 

 

And as for the old testament, it is obviously not good to anyone but the faithful to go killing people based on their religion to make way for another...religion. Or killing off a whole family because the husband did something wrong. Damning homosexuals, and telling them people should be killed for working on a certain day of the week. This is the god Jesus asked us to worship.

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Do you think he would reward people based on whether they worship him or not?
Whether anyone worships him or not, every human being is in the same boat. Every single person has done wrong, and every single person needs God to pull us out of the sinking ship.

 

And why would someone be damned for rape, killing, etc when its largely because they're the product of terrible conditions. Who's to say anyone would be different if they came from the same background.
I am extremely sypmathetic with this view point, but one cannot deny human responsibility for wrongdoing. Our culture is obsessed with blameshifting, and always putting the blame on someone else. "Oh, I only did it because I was raised that way, so really it's my parents' fault, not mine." People trip on the sidewalk and sue the owner of the home, because they can't take responsibility for watching where they are going, and it happened to be on someone else's property.

 

People are responsible for their actions, even though their environment plays a huge influence on them.

 

And as for the old testament... This is the god Jesus asked us to worship.
In the Bible, there is a principle known as "Progressive Revelation." This refers to the fact that God doesn't all at once say, BAM, here's the story. He unfolds it over time, with progressive steps that build atop one another. It is likened to a seed that begins in the first book of the Bible, then sprouts a stem in the second book, then buds in a few more books, etc. The blossom of the flower, in this analogy, is Jesus of Nazareth. He is the fulfillment of the Old Testament, and progressively reveals and shines more light on the Old. It is important to note that it is not "cancelling out" the old, or "overwriting" the old, but "fulfilling" the old, and bringing it to completion.

 

How can a person know mercy, if they don't know justice? How can a person understand grace, if they don't understand condemnation?

 

God, as revealed in the Old Testament, is a partial revelation of God. Before God can display his mercy and grace and love in Jesus, he has to show humanity what mercy and grace and love are FOR- to redeem and save us from the death that comes from sin.

 

The Old Testament is half the picture. Many people look at the Old Testament and stop there. That is half the story. The whole point of the Old Testament was to pave the road for Jesus. Jesus is the whole point of the whole book, and Jesus ushers in the FULL revelation of God as a loving and forgiving and merciful God.

 

God's wrath is not one of his attributes. God's wrath is the natural outworking of his holiness. God is holy, and therefore cannot make accommodation for evil. His wrath is simply the getting rid of evil, but it is not an inherent attribute of God.

 

On the flip side, God's love is one of his inherent attributes. This is why he chose to reconcile the world to himself, through Jesus.

 

Jesus lived the perfect life that nobody could, without any sin. He didn't deserve death. But Jesus decided to take on the punishment for sin on himself substitutionally in our place, so that we would not have to. Jesus removes our sin from us, and imparts to us his life of perfection, so that we are "birthed anew," with a clean slate.

 

But Jesus said that the only way for this transaction to take place is by putting our trust in him. We have to believe that he is the son of God, and that he took on the penalty that we deserved, so that we wouldn't have to. But the decision is in our hands- we reject him, or we accept him.

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