The Weak Rule

Photo by James Douglas on Unsplash

Palm Sunday

 

Philippians 2:5-11 
Non-Christians ignore the Gospels. Most consider them to be fabrications. They may accept Jesus as a great teacher, but they believe his followers dreamed up the notion of resurrection and built a false religion out of it.

The key detail is the resurrection. Is it to be accepted?

As a historian, I see the Four Gospels as trustworthy sources. They differ in their accounts, which is common. It is the nature of the differences that matter. If, for example, one source told us George Washington was 6-2 and another put him at 5-10, we would ignore the difference while accepting each source as equal. But if one said he was white, and another put him down as black, serious study would be required. Multiple sources always have differences. We cannot throw one away because it does not read the way we want.

Forty to sixty years after Jesus left earth, the Gospels were written. There was limited communication; record keeping was expensive, oral histories dominated. Historians agree the four authors received their information from different sources, with some overlapping. That alone accounts for discrepancies.

Even so, accepting the four detailed accounts of the execution and resurrection as history, as the Truth, depends on Faith. The Christian Scriptures consists of 27 documents. The authors of most are in question (including the Four Gospels). How can we say they are authentic?

As a writer of Christian fiction, how do we deal with the Faith issue? I think we must allow our protagonists to doubt, even to disbelieve the fantastic tale of the resurrection. I choose not to accept the beliefs of Hindu and Buddhist people about reincarnation, often as lower life forms. Why can’t I have a character who believes it? Why can’t he be my protagonist? I reject Mohammed is greater than Jesus, but my character might accept it.

We read in verses 10-11 of Paul’s letter, so that all beings in the heavens, on earth and in the underworld, should bend the knee at the name of Jesus and that every tongue should acknowledge Jesus Christ as Lord, to the glory of God the FatherNJB

Paul uses the all-inclusive language used by Jesus, all beings, those in Heaven, but also those in Hell. How can we implement such inclusion in a story?

Verses 5-11holds the key: Let Christ himself be your example as to what your attitude should be. For he, who had always been God by nature, did not cling to his prerogatives as God’s equal, but stripped himself of all privilege by consenting to be a slave by nature and being born as mortal manPhillips

I read few stories where the protagonist is an example of Christ. We make sure they win by being the biggest, strongest, smartest, or most beautiful. What about winning through weakness?

The other scriptures for today are:

Isaiah 50:4-9a
Psalm 31:9-16
Mark 14:1-15:47

 

Read my earlier comments on this theme here.

 

Be righteous and do good.

Mike Lawrence

One thought on “The Weak Rule

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s