"The central doctrine of Christianity, then, is not that God is a bastard. It is, in the words of the late Dominican theologian Herbert McCabe, that if you don’t love you’re dead, and if you do, they’ll kill you."--Terry Eagleton

"...doesn't philosophy amount to the sum of all thinkable and unthinkable errors, ceaselessly repeated?"--Jean-Luc Marion

“The opposite of poverty is not wealth; the opposite of poverty is justice."--Bryan Stevenson

Friday, September 02, 2011

Worn from that great strife....

Athenae's comment on the pitfalls of a "biker Jesus":

As to our painter friend, I think the best illustration of Jesus not being a wimp isn't surfing or boxing or riding a motorcycle but GETTING NAILED TO A TREE AND BEING OKAY WITH IT. Forget turning over the tables of the moneylenders in the temple, you want badassery, try getting railroad spikes driven through your palms. Jean Claude Van God Damme.

As to the entire concept, which is gross: I think if you want to attract straight men on Sundays, you don't recast him as a buff biker. You put his head on a Playboy bunny's body, am I right fellas?

What a load of nonsense. I hate this crap for the same reason I used to hate Guitar Jesus Living is Easy Mass in high school, where they acted like all that was holding teengers back from Christianity was the desire to sit on cushions in a circle instead of pews in a row. This is just an argument about the trappings, not the substance, and if the trappings are what's holding you back go find yourself a genuine theological crisis because we all have better things to do.
made me think of this, an excerpt from the Old English poem "The Dream of the Rood":

On shoulders men bore me there, then fixed me on hill;
fiends enough fastened me. Then saw I mankind's Lord
come with great courage when he would mount on me.
Then dared I not against the Lord's word
bend or break, when I saw earth's
fields shake. All fiends
I could have felled, but I stood fast.
The young hero stripped himself--he, God Almighty--
strong and stout-minded. He mounted high gallows,
bold before many, when he would loose mankind.
I shook when that Man clasped me. I dared, still, not bow to earth,
fall to earth's fields, but had to stand fast.
Rood was I reared. I lifted a mighty King,
Lord of the heavens, dared not to bend.
With dark nails they drove me through: on me those sores are seen,
open malice-wounds. I dared not scathe anyone.
They mocked us both, we two together. All wet with blood I was,
poured out from that Man's side, after ghost he gave up.
Much have I born on that hill
of fierce fate. I saw the God of hosts
harshly stretched out. Darknesses had
wound round with clouds the corpse of the Wielder,
bright radiance; a shadow went forth,
dark under heaven. All creation wept,
King's fall lamented. Christ was on rood.
But there eager ones came from afar
to that noble one. I beheld all that.
Sore was I with sorrows distressed, yet I bent to men's hands,
with great zeal willing. They took there Almighty God,
lifted him from that grim torment. Those warriors abandoned me
standing all blood-drenched, all wounded with arrows.
They laid there the limb-weary one, stood at his body's head;
beheld they there heaven's Lord, and he himself rested there,
worn from that great strife. Then they worked him an earth-house,
men in the slayer's sight carved it from bright stone,
set in it the Wielder of Victories. Then they sang him a sorrow-song,
sad in the eventide, when they would go again
with grief from that great Lord. He rested there, with small company.
But we there lamenting a good while
stood in our places after the warrior's cry
went up. Corpse grew cold,
fair life-dwelling. Then someone felled us
all to the earth. That was a dreadful fate!
Truly the classics never go out of style.


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