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View Poll Results: Who was Jesus?

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  • The Son of God (in the traditionally understood evangelical sense)

    43 37.72%
  • A very good and wise man.

    22 19.30%
  • Definitely more than human... but nothing else can be said with clarity.

    7 6.14%
  • A man tapped into the "ineffable Greatness" of the cosmos/universe.

    3 2.63%
  • A idiosyncratic nut.

    9 7.89%
  • It is unclear whether Jesus actually lived.

    21 18.42%
  • Jesus existed, but it's unsure whether he was human or "more than human"/godly.

    9 7.89%
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Thread: Who Was Jesus?

  1. #71
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon67 View Post
    I thought it had something to do with this:



    I took that to mean that you thought that the stature of Jesus was no more than a means to an end, as it had been thoroughly exploited by Constantine the Great. Perhaps I misconstrued your post...?



    I probably overreached in assuming that because you wrote the following:



    ...that you were expressly contrasting those ancestors with people today. My apologies.

    I have merely pointed out that people like Constantine exploited the stature of Jesus for political gain, and many have done this. Though I did not assert that this is what everyone was about who professed to be a disciple of Jesus.
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  2. #72
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crabapple View Post
    Blue Wing-

    Ummmm- Could you say that in English, for densicles like me?

    I think you're saying- Jesus was probably real;
    What he was really like is uncertain, as you can't trust either what his followers said, or what his detractors said;
    The stories of what miracles he performed are probably symbolic;
    Constantine wasn't really a Christian.
    We follow Christianity because its less gross that chopping out the heart of captured enemies, like the Aztecs did;
    and Jesus was probably a good guy who was murdered by the bad guys.

    Did I get that right?

    Furthermore- Duuuhhhhh? Readin' yo postes makes me feel real stupid.....
    We follow Christianity because it is part of tradition, being less gross than chopping the hearts out of living bodies has nothing to do with this. If that was our tradition, we'd be doing that instead of Christianity, as most people tend to follow whatever teaching is inculcated upon them.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

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  3. #73
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    I have merely pointed out that people like Constantine exploited the stature of Jesus for political gain, and many have done this. Though I did not assert that this is what everyone was about who professed to be a disciple of Jesus.
    My reply was to point out that while many have exploited the stature of Jesus for political gain, I'm not certain that Constantine was one of them. I posited for you the idea that maybe Constantine was of bigger benefit to the church than the church was to Constantine.

    I'm not certain what advantage that publically adopting Christianity would have conveyed to the emperor; until that time Christianity was outlawed in the Empire, and therefore its followers had to avoid official notice. While it was only actively persecuted under three emperors, Christianity was illegal under all the emperors from its beginning to the time of Constantine (some 300 years more or less) and while a "don't ask/don't tell" policy was in place for much of that time, Christians who were publically revealed to be such (without the empire actively trying to ferret them out) were routinely executed.

    For Constantine to have thought to take advantage of Christianity for political gain would have been like the current premier of China joining Falun Gong to reap the attendant political advantages...not a likely scenario.

    While many prominent Romans joined the church after Constantine did, and many previously private Christians uncloseted themselves at the same time, this was because the authority of the emperor lent legal legitimacy to Christianity, not because the church yielded any particular advantage to Constantine.

    Or so I read it. You're welcome to show me where I'm wrong.

  4. #74
    Tenured roisterer SolitaryWalker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon67 View Post
    My reply was to point out that while many have exploited the stature of Jesus for political gain, I'm not certain that Constantine was one of them. I posited for you the idea that maybe Constantine was of bigger benefit to the church than the church was to Constantine.

    I'm not certain what advantage that publically adopting Christianity would have conveyed to the emperor; until that time Christianity was outlawed in the Empire, and therefore its followers had to avoid official notice. While it was only actively persecuted under three emperors, Christianity was illegal under all the emperors from its beginning to the time of Constantine (some 300 years more or less) and while a "don't ask/don't tell" policy was in place for much of that time, Christians who were publically revealed to be such (without the empire actively trying to ferret them out) were routinely executed.

    For Constantine to have thought to take advantage of Christianity for political gain would have been like the current premier of China joining Falun Gong to reap the attendant political advantages...not a likely scenario.

    While many prominent Romans joined the church after Constantine did, and many previously private Christians uncloseted themselves at the same time, this was because the authority of the emperor lent legal legitimacy to Christianity, not because the church yielded any particular advantage to Constantine.

    Or so I read it. You're welcome to show me where I'm wrong.

    I see, you probably know your history better than I do. I wasnt necessarily referring to Constanine per se---was just trying to think of a figure to symbolize those who exploited Christianity for political gain.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

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  5. #75
    Oberon
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    Oh. Okay.

  6. #76
    Senior Member Crabapple's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    We follow Christianity because it is part of tradition, being less gross than chopping the hearts out of living bodies has nothing to do with this. If that was our tradition, we'd be doing that instead of Christianity, as most people tend to follow whatever teaching is inculcated upon them.
    Thank you, BlueWing.
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  7. #77
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    ...as most people tend to follow whatever teaching is inculcated upon them.
    I wish they had been taught to worship me!
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  8. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by oberon View Post
    Oh. Okay.
    Now, I will go back and say that a typical man of year 10 was more likely to be a non-thinker than a conventional man of present day. This is because back then society was less informed of science and philosophy and formal education was more difficult to obtain.
    "Do not argue with an idiot. They drag you down to their level and beat you with experience." -- Mark Twain

    “No man but a blockhead ever wrote, except for money.”---Samuel Johnson

    My blog: www.randommeanderings123.blogspot.com/

  9. #79
    Oberon
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    Quote Originally Posted by BlueWing View Post
    Now, I will go back and say that a typical man of year 10 was more likely to be a non-thinker than a conventional man of present day. This is because back then society was less informed of science and philosophy and formal education was more difficult to obtain.
    I will agree with that, and add that most people in the year 10 were too busy trying to scrape together some kind of living from day to day to have the slightest interest in philosophy.

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    Kant would say that in terms of teleological morality, we have faith (which he classifies as an attitude of the mind) and we can believe in a Higher being for which we have not or can not find any empirical proof in the sensorial sphere, in the teleological in nature. Yet Jesus who lived for a while in the sphere "of the senses" made the assertion that whoever has "seen him has seen the Father/God-I and my Father in heaven are one and the same"; the challenge that one is confronted with is whether to accept this ridiculous statement or to deny this beautiful truth! What matters for each person is whether they can accept Jesus' message, and that is "denial of the self and to follow him". But one thing that people are afraid of the most is to lose the self, something that each will lose either way in the long run (temporal), and not only to lose it but to entrust it into someone else's hands-Jesus'. For some this may be a big challenge, for me it is simple "He is my Lord and Savior".
    [

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