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Jesus and Ethical Considerations

If the Kingdom of Heaven were not advancing, then Christ’s commands would be of the most wicked variety.

I laugh when I see people call Jesus a great moral teacher but no Messiah. If he weren’t a Messiah reconciling the world to God, his teachings should be thrown out, for they call us to forsake our lives for his and to give up everything we hold dear and to love others with a wholly self-sacrificial and self-denying love that would have no place in a YOLO (Oh, somebody shoot me for using that) universe.

He would have no authority, and no ethical justification, for calling us to sell all that we have and give to the poor, to deny ourselves, and to die for his sake, if the Kingdom of Heaven were not rapidly and truly advancing. It’s not even if he sincerely believed that it were but it actually wasn’t—unless the Kingdom is actually advancing, Christ’s obligating commands are meaningless and dangerous.

I leave you with this quotation by the deceased Christopher Hitchens,

When C.S. Lewis, for example, says–now, I don’t particularly admire the writer but he did have some moral courage–says, ‘If this man [Jesus] was not the Son of God, then his teachings were evil. Because, if you don’t believe that the Kingdom of Heaven is at hand and that you can’t get to it by the Way, the Truth, and the Life offered by the Gospel, then there’s no excuse for telling people, “Take no thought for tomorrow,” for example if he did. There’s no excuse for telling people that they don’t have to practice thrift, care about their children; they must leave everything and follow him. That would be a wicked thing to say–it would be like Jim Jones–if he didn’t sincerely believe that the story–the preaching–was true. It would be an evil nonsense.’

I extend his argument:  even if Christ sincerely believed it, unless it were existentially and ontologically true that the Kingdom of Heaven is advancing, Christ’s commands are worthless. The Kingdom of Heaven must be advancing and Christ must be the Son of God for these commands to have merit.

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  1. May 2, 2012 at 8:27 pm

    Hmmm… what if his Kingdom is not of this world? How then would we “see” it advance? This is why one of the greatest arguments of atheists like Hitchens against the gospel are misdirected.

  1. May 3, 2012 at 10:48 am

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