Author Topic: Did Jesus practice what he preached?  (Read 1439 times)

Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« on: July 05, 2019, 09:22:55 AM »
According to Matthew 5:22 (NRSV) Jesus tells us:

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...if you say, ‘You fool,’ you will be liable to the hell of fire.

Yet he says exactly that in Matthew 23:17 (NRSV)

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You blind fools!

And in Matthew 5:39 (NRSV) we are told:

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But I say to you, Do not resist an evildoer. But if anyone strikes you on the right cheek, turn the other also...

In John 18:23 (NRSV) Jesus is struck. Did he turn and offer the other cheek?

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Jesus answered, “If I have spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong. But if I have spoken rightly, why do you strike me?”

No, he didn't!

Why didn't Jesus take his own advice?

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2019, 10:04:25 AM »
Why did Jesus disobey his own instructions and rules?  Because he is a fiction and is a composite of what those who chose which writings to include (and in what order they appear in the finished 'book') in the bible--so Jesus says one thing for those who wanted him to say any particular saying(s) and another for those who wanted him to say that.  The bible was not put together by one person, but a group and so Jesus is made to say conflicting things.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Offline Sal1981

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #2 on: July 05, 2019, 10:39:13 AM »
Did Superman fly so fast he went back in time?
"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool" --- Richard P. Feynman

Offline Shiranu

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #3 on: July 05, 2019, 12:06:20 PM »
It’s almost like the Jesus mythos is a compilation of stories and philosophies of contemporary figures rather than just the historical accounts of one individual... 🤔
Quod est inferius, est sicut quod est superius.
Et quod est superius, est sicut quod est inferius.

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #4 on: July 05, 2019, 01:19:59 PM »
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It’s almost like the Jesus mythos is a compilation of stories and philosophies of contemporary figures rather than just the historical accounts of one individual... 🤔
Yeah, funny thing about that, huh?
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"An experiment is a question which science poses to Nature, and a measurement is the recording of Nature's answer."
Max Planck, Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers (1949)

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #5 on: July 05, 2019, 01:21:35 PM »
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It’s almost like the Jesus mythos is a compilation of stories and philosophies of contemporary figures rather than just the historical accounts of one individual... 🤔
Yes, it is just like that.  Because that is what it is.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #6 on: July 05, 2019, 01:23:45 PM »
What I don't understand is why that isn't obvious to a lot more people. Probably because they never actually read the story.
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"An experiment is a question which science poses to Nature, and a measurement is the recording of Nature's answer."
Max Planck, Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers (1949)

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #7 on: July 05, 2019, 02:05:05 PM »
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Why did Jesus disobey his own instructions and rules?  Because he is a fiction and is a composite of what those who chose which writings to include (and in what order they appear in the finished 'book') in the bible--so Jesus says one thing for those who wanted him to say any particular saying(s) and another for those who wanted him to say that. 

I think the theory you posted here is a viable historical theory for Jesus. The advantage of a fictional Christ is that there were no people who knew him who would dispute what was written and claimed about him. If different people were making up the gospel, then naturally they would not completely agree about what they said he said. If Jesus was historical, then I would expect more consistency in his story than what we read in the New Testament.

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The bible was not put together by one person, but a group and so Jesus is made to say conflicting things.

Real-Jesus apologists seem so naive claiming that different people mentioning Jesus is evidence for his historicity. But as you say, the source for Jesus was a group, and they had common beliefs and motives. So what consistency we do see in their writings about Jesus need not be based in common knowledge of a real Christ but in common beliefs about a Christ who need not be historical.

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #8 on: July 05, 2019, 02:46:31 PM »
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What I don't understand is why that isn't obvious to a lot more people. Probably because they never actually read the story.
I think the huge majority of church going christians simply go along with whatever the current minister says Jesus says; they don't read the bible as a whole--too much trouble.
Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent,
Is he able but not willing?
Then whence cometh evil?
Is he neither able or willing?
Then why call him god?

Offline Baruch

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2019, 04:05:18 PM »
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Why did Jesus disobey his own instructions and rules?  Because he is a fiction and is a composite of what those who chose which writings to include (and in what order they appear in the finished 'book') in the bible--so Jesus says one thing for those who wanted him to say any particular saying(s) and another for those who wanted him to say that.  The bible was not put together by one person, but a group and so Jesus is made to say conflicting things.

I don't see consistency as the same issue.  Would a perfectly logical Vulcan be ipso facto … the Messiah?
𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎌𐎀𐎍𐎎𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀𐎟𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎁𐎀𐎍𐎉𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀
luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline Baruch

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #10 on: July 05, 2019, 04:09:15 PM »
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What I don't understand is why that isn't obvious to a lot more people. Probably because they never actually read the story.

Correct.  Traditionally it is a sin for non-clergy to read the Bible.  And extra-sin for non-clergy to interpret it.  So mostly people … what they know of Jesus is what the priest said.  The notion of lay people reading the Bible is only 500 years old in Christianity.  Judaism and Islam didn't have these problems.  They are less composite (NT is a really different and incompatible scripture).  So Jews and Muslims were encouraged to read and write.  Christians were not.  Paul even denigrates scholarship.

So do Jews see inconsistencies?  Interpretation still insulates.  It works that way for Muslims too.  The interpretations/commentaries become primary eg: Talmud/Hadith.
« Last Edit: July 05, 2019, 04:15:11 PM by Baruch »
𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎌𐎀𐎍𐎎𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀𐎟𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎁𐎀𐎍𐎉𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀
luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Offline Baruch

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #11 on: July 05, 2019, 04:12:32 PM »
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I think the theory you posted here is a viable historical theory for Jesus. The advantage of a fictional Christ is that there were no people who knew him who would dispute what was written and claimed about him. If different people were making up the gospel, then naturally they would not completely agree about what they said he said. If Jesus was historical, then I would expect more consistency in his story than what we read in the New Testament.

Real-Jesus apologists seem so naive claiming that different people mentioning Jesus is evidence for his historicity. But as you say, the source for Jesus was a group, and they had common beliefs and motives. So what consistency we do see in their writings about Jesus need not be based in common knowledge of a real Christ but in common beliefs about a Christ who need not be historical.

That is why the Jesus Seminar attempted to tease out the "true" parts using a consistent technique.  The results were controversial.  John Dominic Crossan tried his own technique, though he was also a member of the Jesus Seminar,  Modern scholarship would claim "community" rather than "individual".  The Johannine writings are clearly different, so it is believed that they were a completely different group from that of Mark for example.
𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎌𐎀𐎍𐎎𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀𐎟𐎍𐎜𐎜𐎟𐎁𐎀𐎍𐎉𐎀𐎀𐎚𐎀
luu shalmaata luu balt’aata
May you be well, may you be healthy

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #12 on: July 05, 2019, 05:11:38 PM »
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It’s almost like the Jesus mythos is a compilation of stories and philosophies of contemporary figures rather than just the historical accounts of one individual... 🤔

Some people have noted that in addition to the things Jesus is said to have done being the acts of more than one figure, his "philosophies" as you say probably did originate in more than one source. For example, Jesus supposedly came up with the parable of Lazarus and the rich man, but in all probability this story is based in The Tale of Khaemwese, an Egyptian fable that long predated Christianity. So either Jesus borrowed all these older beliefs and stories, or several members of the early-Christian sect contributed them to what later became what we call "the teachings of Jesus." It seems unlikely to me that all that thought was confined to one person and originated in one source. If there was a Jesus, then he likely would have encountered many people who already would share his philosophy and theology--the "proto-Christians."

So who needs a (single) Jesus when we can more easily explain gospel-theology as coming from several people working together and contributing thought to create a "new" religion? If there was a Jesus, then he probably had help!

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #13 on: July 05, 2019, 05:40:10 PM »
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Real-Jesus apologists seem so naive claiming that different people mentioning Jesus is evidence for his historicity. But as you say, the source for Jesus was a group, and they had common beliefs and motives. So what consistency we do see in their writings about Jesus need not be based in common knowledge of a real Christ but in common beliefs about a Christ who need not be historical.

Yeah, people who use the eyewitness analogy don't understand how that works. If the Gospel writers (if we even knew who they were) were gathered up, separated into different rooms, and were asked to provide their accounts independently, then maybe you could use that analogy. However, when chronologically later Gospels quote earlier ones verbatim, then it becomes obvious what is really going on. They weren't eyewitness providing their own versions of events by memory. They were taking already existing texts and adding and taking away from it. Contradictions between Gospel books were not accidental, but the result of one author disagreeing with another and "correcting" them as they pleased
"Oh, wearisome condition of humanity,
Born under one law, to another bound;
Vainly begot, and yet forbidden vanity,
Created sick, commanded to be sound."
--Fulke Greville

Re: Did Jesus practice what he preached?
« Reply #14 on: July 05, 2019, 05:51:47 PM »
I don't think the gospel writers ever expected their work to be gathered into one book, as if they were merely chapters in a longer literary effort. I doubt that Mark's gospel, at least, was intended to be considered as literally historical, either. His gospel is a lot like the writings of Homer, as though it was intended to be a theatrical performance.

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"An experiment is a question which science poses to Nature, and a measurement is the recording of Nature's answer."
Max Planck, Scientific Autobiography and Other Papers (1949)

 

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