Hearty Heresy


Kill Christianity, Part Two
September 28, 2007, 10:20 am
Filed under: Christianity, Heresy, Jesus, Religion | Tags: , , ,

Okay, so before we can “kill Christianity,” we have to “kill the Christ.” I don’t want to kill Jesus, mind you–I’m not one of those the-historical-Jesus-never-existed kind of heretics. I wouldn’t be a heretic then, just an unbeliever. But I do believe that the teachings of Jesus still have value, which is why I feel it’s so important to go beyond the standard interpretation of them (Jesus wasn’t just a spiritual teacher and moral exemplar, but the SON of GOD who DIED for YOUR SINS!) and dig the diamonds out of the dunghill of the Gospels (to use Thomas Jefferson’s metaphor). So, where to begin killing the Christ?

Brand Xians sometimes like to point out that Jesus (as the Son of God) not only became human, but became the lowest of the low of humans. After all, he was baptized in the Jordan River, the lowest point on land on earth. That’s a nice metaphor, but remember–John baptized everyone else in the Jordon River, too. They were all sort of equally low. Sure Jesus was born into humble circumstances, but so were all of the other non-Roman citizens at the time. (And Jews even had special privileges in the Roman Empire, like being allowed to continue their exclusive sacrifices at the Temple in Jerusalem.)

So Brand Xians will take it further: Yes, but Jesus was even lower because he was a Galalean, and “nothing good comes out of Galalee.” Of course most the inhabitants of Galalee were non-Roman citizens, so they were all sort of equally no good. Again, that doesn’t make Jesus very special–just part of the great unwashed.

The next step can be taken by the only most non-sentimental Brand Xians, which is to acknowledge that Jesus was considered a “mazmer,” i.e., illegitimate, and therefore relegated to the lowest of the low. But Matthew and Luke inserted an escape clause here by claiming the Mary was actually betrothed and eventually married to Joseph which saved Jesus from being labeled with the worst possible designation–being a bastard.

But that’s actually the place to beginning killing the Christ. Spend some time meditating on the idea that he wasn’t the Son of God, but a Jewish bastard from Galalee–the son of an unwed teenaged mother, if you will. For me, that’s why his teachings about love and forgiveness are so powerful. He really was in a pretty low position in the pecking order of the day, and there would be absolutely no expectation that a country rube who adhered to a quaint relic of a religion would have anything of value to say, especially if he was a bastard. But he did have something of value to say, which is why his teachings survive, in spite of the best efforts of orthodox Christians to elevate him to GodMan status, a status which I believe actually devalues his teachings. So down with the Son of God and up with the bastard Jew from Galalee!