It Doesn't Work That Way

Arthur's Journal on God & Politics
What Does It Mean to be Christian in America?
A God of War
Apocalypse & End Times
Biblical Literalism
Christ Path
Conformity & Orthodoxy
Fear, Shame & Guilt
God & Politics
Goodness, Morality & Sin
Heresy & Heretics
History, Mystery & Doubt
Kindergarten Religion
Mental Spiritual Constructs
Mystical Christianity
Mythical Proportions
Passion of The Christ ...
Someone Else's Magic

It doesn't work that way. There is no damnation awaiting and no punishment for not getting all the jots and tittles in place.
If the posts are too long for you, take a break half way through. Go out and consider the lillies of the field.

It was never necessary to believe in the death, burial and physical resurrection of Jesus Christ in the sense of some sort of punishment or damnation if one did not. It has never been in terms of "you have to believe or go to hell" - but always in terms of "knock and it shall be opened unto you."

For me, the resurrection is the marvelous evidence of the immortality of the soul. For me Jesus proved our immortality in a way that truly relates to joy in understanding that being alive and taking joy in living is more important than a mortal state of fear and trembling for one's own existence.

Certainly the belief you describe is helpful - extremely helpful. I subscribe to it. But I don't subscribe to it because someone thinks that the Bible says I have to or that some group of believers, large or small, will not validate me and consider me Christian unless I say conform to some traditional mindless formula.

I'm not sure I understand how you use the term "necessary." Necessary in the sense of something wise and useful to understand? Or necessary in the sense of "mandatory" and "you cannot pass if you don't believe properly?"
"We won't consider you "Christian" if you don't do the "necessary?"

In fact, Christianity is better served by those who completely deny the above story of Christ and resolve to equate the story of Jesus with all other such handed down mythology.

Christianity is better served by those who do not equate a rigid and "necessary" (as in mandatory) way to believe and understand the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

The point of the resurrection is the realization that we all die yet we all continue;

that we all die in our imperfect and flawed lives but not subject to a mindless qualification before being "allowed" to continue existing;

that we do not die as sinful and lost conscripted warriors in God's ongoing battle against evil and that such a battle does not exist in the way it has been taught;

that the whole construct of God's reality is not the deteriorated Jewish version that existed in Jesus' lifetime in which obedience or punishment are the only choices;

nor is it the perversion added by the early cleric dominators of the Bible who taught that it was necessary in some vague mandatory way to align your belief and understanding with some "established" (by who?) order of belief or suffer excommunication or torture as a heretic.

I propose that Jesus sought to free us from the bondage of the mind that governs outward behavior and that death is not a punishment or even any kind of a final moment.

What dearer understanding than to know that God became mortal to show us exactly how things are and how life in communion with God is constant and continues beyond death - and that in revealing such things, God was not then nor is God now bound to follow any mortal's self-evolved understanding of the same. Not mine nor yours nor any church's.

It doesn't work that way.

You do not approach God with permission nor thru Holy Curtains guarded by Biblical Sentries. You don't even go "somewhere" to find God, because God has, as stated earlier, poured himself into humanity and lives in each of us.

The secret that seems to terrify the shallow legalistic interpreters of Christian dogma is what Jesus really gave us: "I am God ... and so are you. If you have seen me you have seen God.
God is in his kingdom and that kingdom is within.

Our Christianity has seemed to want to make it more difficult and complex than that and create an idolatry around concepts of piety and righteousness.

Righteousness as an expression of morality will never work. Morality will never absorb ethics. Rather, we will come to a more natural and universally helpful way of living when our ethics have absorbed our morality.

The tragedy of this conflict around religion is that none of us need each other's permission to know and understand God in our own way.

There is no damnation awaiting and no punishment for not getting all the jots and tittles in place.

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