I think we have to first bear in mind several caveats when reading the Gospels - firstly that it's unlikely anyone was following Jesus around writing down his words, and secondly the gospels aren't intended to be an accurate historical account, they are theological constructs with their own agendas - and each agenda has its own slant. Then there are the usual problems associated with oral accounts being written down decades later by someone who wasn't there and doesn't even speak the same language.Ecurb wrote: ↑March 25th, 2021, 11:01 amYour quote mining is not impressive, Sculptor. In fact, Matthew 25, from which you mine one quote, suggests that love and kindness are more important than obedience or faith. Here are some of those verses:Sculptor1 wrote: ↑March 24th, 2021, 7:30 am
But the sum of what Jesus was supposed to have taught does not amount to kindness, love, concern, and peace.
It amounts to a threat. If you do not act in the way I says you will be damned. Jesus also says you need to jettison family and follow me, or else. Be subservient to me, or else. Be celibate, or else. Jesus says you are born ill and commands you to be well, or else.....
Do yourself a favour and have the courage to read the bits you don't like.[/b]
Those of us who are educated know that "celibate" means "unmarried". Perhaps Sculptor meant "abstinent", since Jesus (as I recall) never contemns marriage. He changed that water into wine at Cana, didn't he?34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visited me: I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink?
38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee?
39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee?
40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
To Scott: don't mind Sculptor. He's a jerk to everyone. Just ignore him. The New Testament is complicated, and Jesus does say, "I came not to bring peace, but a sword", but Sculptor is anti-intellectual, and is not interested in exploring the complexities of seeming contradictions in it.
By the way, as I understand it, Judaism is not heirarchical. "Rabai" simply means "teacher" in Hebrew, and rabais have no official duties, unlike Catholic priests who alone can hear confessions, give communion, officiate sacraments, etc.
So to believe Jesus spoke any specific set of words has to be treated with caution. Quote battles which point to inconsistencies are more usefully addressed when we bear all this in mind.
What we can do is try to get the gist of his message, which was obviously a powerful one. Personally I favour the apocalyptic prophet interpretation. I think Jesus was saying that the current religious leadership were failing, had betrayed Yahweh and his special covenant with his chosen people (one based on Old Testament law). These sort of prophets often popped up in the Old Testament in times of hardship - invasion and enslavement, as an explanation for the situation. The messiah or new leader who will save them tradition is linked to this. And the Jews got invaded a lot!
Jesus's particular message seems to be that Yahweh is going to directly intervene and overthrow the current situation, the Jewish leadership as well as the occupying Romans, instituting his own kingdom here on earth in its place. Imminently. The end of things as people know them is very nigh. And Yahweh will judge those who failed him. (There is a 'save yourselves!' kind of threat in that).
The answer is to make it right for yourself before you get judged. Don't worry about material things or family ties - cast all those concerns aside, every other concern, because everything is about to change. Everything. So listen to me, I've got this special revelation from Yahweh which will save you when it happens.
It didn't happen of course. And that has led to a reinterpretation of Jesus's message, rather than it dying with him. The gospels are already beginning that reinterpretation. Mark is the earliest gospel, and probably more reliable than the others. But it too is a theological narrative, constructed in a way meant to tell a grander story than what Jesus said or did. By the time we get to John's gospel and Paul's letters, we're in deep theological reassessment and interpretation. And Jesus himself is no longer just a man with a message from Yahweh.
Passages like the one you quoted resonate with lots of people, it's powerful. But it fits the same apocalyptic context as the one saying leave your possessions and family behind and follow me, have no care for them. The stories of Mrs Mathew, Mrs Mark, Mrs Luke and Mrs John and their abandoned kids don't get told.