Speaking as a classicist, I can say that is true of many historical figures from that era. Socrates never wrote anything himself and given Plato's penchant for using him as a mouthpiece for his views, one could be forgiven for thinking Socrates was a fictional creation of Plato if you only looked at Plato. In fact, the best source for proving Socrates' existence is Aristophanes The Clouds. You don't generally satirize fictional figures (It's an absolutely hilarious play if you know the historical and philosophical context, BTW). Xenophon, another pupil of Socrates, helps as well.I don't know that Jesus was fictional, but given how bloody important and influential he appears in the Bible, and not just how little information we have from contemporary sources, but also how sources like Josephus were clearly forged into his Antiquities of the Jews, I think it's reasonable to say that Jesus possibly, if not probably never existed in the first place. Not in the way as was recorded in the Bible.
Who decides who is "considered part of Christianity"? Since there is no arbiter, the question is pointless. Those who are part of Christianity are those who consider themselves part of Christianity. Having said that, there will be various Christian bodies and churches that will not accept some who consider themselves to be Christians as Christians. I suspect there are many who consider themselves Christians who do not accept the idea of the dual nature of Jesus, and there is no one body that has the authority to say that they aren't Christians.Why do we have to believe that Jesus is Fully God and Fully Human to be considered part of Christianity?
Same as what I said above. Since there are many who consider themselves Christians who do not accept the dual nature of Jesus, then what you suggest is far from impossible. It is, in fact, demonstrably possible.Waterfall said:Is it impossible to think that we could follow Jesus even if he is fully human but anointed and chosen by God rather than believing he is God Himself? Would it really have affected Christianity if Jesus was fully human?
I'm not particularly interested in giving you an "argument." I will state my belief. I believe Jesus to be both fully human and fully divine. That makes sense to me. I believe the witness of Scripture that "God is love." The witness of Scripture matches my personal experiences of God. I believe that "God so loved the world ..." I believe that if God loved the world - if God loves the whole creation - then it makes sense that God would choose to be a part of the creation. The incarnation of God in Jesus makes sense to me as the ultimate sign of divine love for humanity. God loved us so much that God chose to be one of us and one with us - to experience all that we might experience, both positive and negative, up to and including a horrible death. To me, this is love. If God did not become incarnate in Jesus (thus making Jesus both fullynhuman and fully divine) then that is a sign that God's love for us is limited. I do not fully understand the incarnation. But the concept makes sense to me, and so I believe it.Waterfall said:Give me your best argument why you believe Jesus is God/or not.
Thousands, last I knew.I left out dozens, probably hundreds. I was giving examples, not an exhaustive list.
Of course I don't mind!I looked up Wesleyan Quadrilateral, because I'd never heard of it before, so I hope you don't mind if I post a definition using Wiki so that others will be aware also:
The sum of the internal angles must be equal to 360 degrees?The Wesleyan Quadrilateral comes from our former Methodist members. (I just assumed it would also feature in UCC discourse?)
At the lay preachers course we learnt that, when preaching, we should be mindful of its requirements....
A wonderful description of a fully human Jesus!To me it is very important to see Jesus as fully human, someone we can identify with and trust to identify with us. We read of Jesus growing not only in stature but in understanding. We see him impatient, tired, disappointed, frustrated, and angry. We see him thirsty or hungry. We see him praying for guidance. And we see him changing water to wine at a wedding, celebrating, rejoicing, talking to children, showing empathy with the poor and disadvantaged. Human qualities. And we see him changing his mind – at least on one occasion. This is the Jesus I follow – fully human.
We're acutely aware of your reasons.Looking at the quadrilateral, it kind of makes sense. But I would point out that Experience and Reason are largely why I ended up abandoning Scripture and Tradition so make of that what you will.
Christians seem to love geometry. I love geometry. That's probably the only parallel between us.You just can't help yourself, can you, lol!
I seem to remember visiting a vineyard with Pinga and bette the red in Canada. Of course, I did my best to talk up our Aussie reds.You, too, eh? Seems to me there's some decent stuff coming out of your country now, too. I think I've had an Aussie Red somewhere recently.
Experience was the door to my faith - and, as for reason, that's why Process Theology appeals..........Looking at the quadrilateral, it kind of makes sense. But I would point out that Experience and Reason are largely why I ended up abandoning Scripture and Tradition so make of that what you will
Half a grei llness? Sad over the short age of whine!I seem to remember visiting a vineyard with Pinga and bette the red in Canada. Of course, I did my best to talk up our Aussie reds.
True story - when I went to the original Wondercafe picnic at Five Oaks I bought an Aussie red with me. As I only had the one bottle I just poured folks a thimbleful.
A certain lawyer - who shall remain nameless - said to me as he surveyed the inch at the bottom of his glass,
"In Canada we usually leave an inch at the top of the glass!"