WHO IS JESUS?: GOD OR JUST A GOOD MAN?
Exclusive text by José Nuñez part 2.
BUT, we must remember that for someone to consider himself God, especially in a fiercely monotheistic culture, and then to tell others that their eternal destiny depended on believing in Him, there is no slight flight of fancy but the thoughts of a lunatic in the fuller sense. Was Jesus Christ such a person? Someone who believes he is God sounds like someone who believes himself to be Napoleon today. He would be cheated and scammed himself, and would probably be locked up so as not to hurt himself or anyone else. However, in Jesus we do not see the abnormalities and imbalance that usually go with being crazy. His poise and composure would certainly be incredible if he were insane.
Noyes and Kolb, in a medical text, describe the schizophrenic as a person who is more autistic than realistic. The schizophrenic wishes to escape from the world of reality. Let us be honest; to claim that he is God would certainly be a retreat from reality. In light of the other things we know about Jesus, it is hard to imagine that he was mentally disturbed. Here is a man who spoke some of the most profound sayings ever recorded. His instructions have freed many people from mental bondage.
Clark H. Pinnock asks, "Was he deluded about his greatness, a paranoid, an unwitting deceiver, a schizophrenic? Again, the skill and depth of his teachings support the case only for his utter soundness of mind. If only we were as healthy as him"
The psychiatrist J.T. Fisher states: "If I were to take the sum total of all the authoritative articles written by the most qualified psychologists and psychiatrists on the subject of mental hygiene -- if I were to combine and refine them -- and weed out the excess verbiage -- if I were to take all the meat and no parsley, and if you had these fragments of pure scientific knowledge expressed concisely by the poets who still live, you would have an uncomfortable and incomplete sum of the Sermon on the Mount, (Matthew 5. 3-48) And I would suffer immeasurably through the comparison. For almost 2,000 years, the Christian world has held in its hands the complete answer to its restless and unsuccessful yearnings. Here is the model of a successful human life with optimism, sanity and contentment."
“BLESSED ARE THE POOR IN SPIRIT, FOR THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN. BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO CRY, FOR THEY WILL BE COMFORTED. BLESSED ARE THE HUMBLE OR, MEEK, FOR THEY SHALL INHERIT THE EARTH. BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO HUNGRY AND THIRST FOR JUSTICE, FOR THEY WILL BE SATISFIED. BLESSED ARE THE MERCIFUL, FOR THEY WILL RECEIVE MERCY. BLESSED ARE THE CLEAN OF HEART, FOR THEY WILL SEE GOD. BLESSED ARE THOSE WHO SEEK PEACE, FOR THEY WILL BE CALLED CHILDREN OF GOD. BLESSED THOSE WHO HAVE BEEN PERSECUTED BECAUSE OF JUSTICE, BECAUSE THEIRS IS THE KINGDOM OF HEAVENS. BLESSED ARE YOU WHEN THEY INSULT AND PERSECUTE YOU, AND SAY ALL KINDS OF EVIL AGAINST YOU FALSELY, BECAUSE OF ME. REJOICE AND BE GLAD, BECAUSE YOUR REWARD IN HEAVEN IS GREAT, BECAUSE THUS THEY PERSECUTED THE PROPHETS THAT WERE BEFORE YOU. YOU ARE THE SALT OF THE EARTH; BUT IF SALT HAS BECOME TASTY, WHAT WILL MAKE IT SALTY AGAIN? NO LONGER IS IT USED FOR ANYTHING, BUT TO BE THROWED OUT AND TRAPPED ON BY MEN. YOU ARE THE LIGHT OF THE WORLD. A CITY SITUATED ON A MOUNTAIN CANNOT BE HIDDEN; NOR DO YOU LIGHT A LAMP AND PUT IT UNDER A BASKETBALL CAPACITY MEASUREMENT OF 8.75 LITERS, BUT OVER THE CANDLESTICK, AND IT LIGHTS EVERYONE WHO IS IN THE HOUSE. SO SHINE YOUR LIGHT BEFORE MEN, SO THAT THEY MAY SEE YOUR GOOD DEEDS AND GLORIFY YOUR FATHER WHO IS IN HEAVEN.”
Matthew 5. 3-16
Was He Lord? They say that General Norman Schwarzkopf, who led the war against Iraq, once said that his mission was not to forgive the Iraqis, that is God's mission, his mission was only to bring about an encounter between them. I will explain this at the end. I cannot personally conclude that Jesus was a liar or a lunatic. The only other alternative is that He was the Christ, the Son of God, as he claimed.
To summarise: the importance of making a decision. If we were before a doctor and we had gangrene. We have to choose whether he cuts off a finger now, or the gangrene continues advancing. If we do not decide now, later they will have to cut off our forearm, and soon, if we do not decide, the gangrene will reach the heart, and there will be no solution. The same thing happens with Jesus. It is preferable to say that Jesus never existed then to say that Jesus was a moral teacher who loved little birds and flowers, but that he was not God. Because if the person says that he existed or he was crazy, or a liar or he was God. The Jews of his time
They understood well when they reproached him for not being 50 years old yet and saying that he had seen Abraham, in John chapter 8. They were right, because only a liar or a madman could say that he knew Abraham, who had been born 2000 years ago. A liar or a madman cannot be a teacher of morals and pretty things. So we are left with only that he was God. Accepting that is revolutionary. Because I cannot say that Jesus is God, turn around and have a Coke. That truth would shock me. I would have to admit it, and absolutely recognise myself as imperfect in front of him. Repent and give him my life. I do not want to be like the doctor who urges you to cut off your finger now or you will lose your life later, but I want to pass the responsibility on to you. The decision to say who Jesus is will be faced now, or later when you see him face to face.
Do you remember Schwarzkopf? My mission is not to make an appointment with God for you to ask for forgiveness. Schwarzkopf prepared the appointment for them at gunpoint. You must not die today to know God. But you can recognise, if you are intellectually honest, that Jesus was not crazy, a liar or a good teacher. Jesus died on the cross so that by believing in him, you may have eternal life. That will change your life. And you will become a follower of Jesus.
That you decide who Jesus Christ is should not be an idle intellectual exercise. You cannot put him on the podium as a moral grandmaster. That is not a valid option.
He is a liar, a lunatic, or Lord and God. You must make a choice. But, as the apostle John wrote, "But these are written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and"-more importantly-"so that by believing you may have life through his name" (John 20 :31).
The evidence is clearly in favor of Jesus as Lord. Some people, however, reject this clear evidence because of the moral implications involved. They do not want to face the responsibility or the implications of calling him Lord.
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WHO IS JESUS?: GOD OR JUST A GOOD MAN?
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