Jesus was an apocalyptic rabbi who did not believe in family values

Jesus was an apocalyptic rabbi who challenged authority and did not believe in family values. He was crucified for challenging authority and did not sacrifice himself to save humans for their sins.

From the Gospel of Thomas*:

Example 1

(55) Jesus said, “Whoever does not hate his father and his mother cannot become a disciple to me. And whoever does not hate his brothers and sisters and take up his cross in my way will not be worthy of me.”

Example 2

Jesus was speaking to a crowd in a public place that had gathered to hear him speak.

(99) The disciples said to him, “Your brothers and your mother are standing outside.”

He said to them, “Those here who do the will of my father are my brothers and my mother. It is they who will enter the kingdom of my father.”

Perhaps you thought he was all about peace?

Example 3

(16) Jesus said, “Men think, perhaps, that it is peace which I have come to cast upon the world. They do not know that it is dissension which I have come to cast upon the earth: fire, sword, and war. For there will be five in a house: three will be against two, and two against three, the father against the son, and the son against the father. And they will stand solitary.”

Dissension against whom?

Example 4

(63) Jesus said, “There was a rich man who had much money. He said, ‘I shall put my money to use so that I may sow, reap, plant, and fill my storehouse with produce, with the result that I shall lack nothing.’ Such were his intentions, but that same night he died. Let him who has ears hear.”

Example 5

(64) Jesus said, “A man had received visitors. And when he had prepared the dinner, he sent his servant to invite the guests.

He went to the first one and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said, ‘I have claims against some merchants. They are coming to me this evening. I must go and give them my orders. I ask to be excused from the dinner.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master has invited you.’ He said to him, ‘I have just bought a house and am required for the day. I shall not have any spare time.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said to him, ‘My friend is going to get married, and I am to prepare the banquet. I shall not be able to come. I ask to be excused from the dinner.’

He went to another and said to him, ‘My master invites you.’ He said to him, ‘I have just bought a farm, and I am on my way to collect the rent. I shall not be able to come. I ask to be excused.’

The servant returned and said to his master, ‘Those whom you invited to the dinner have asked to be excused.’ The master said to his servant, ‘Go outside to the streets and bring back those whom you happen to meet, so that they may dine.’ Businessmen and merchants will not enter the places of my father.”

Example 6

(65) He said, “There was a good man who owned a vineyard. He leased it to tenant farmers so that they might work it and he might collect the produce from them. He sent his servant so that the tenants might give him the produce of the vineyard. They seized his servant and beat him, all but killing him. The servant went back and told his master. The master said, ‘Perhaps he did not recognize them.’ He sent another servant. The tenants beat this one as well. Then the owner sent his son and said, ‘Perhaps they will show respect to my son.’ Because the tenants knew that it was he who was the heir to the vineyard, they seized him and killed him. Let him who has ears hear.”

With whom did he identify?

Example 7

(54) Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor, for yours is the kingdom of heaven.”

Example 8

(58) Jesus said, “Blessed is the man who has suffered and found life.”

Example 9

(49) Jesus said, “Blessed are the solitary and elect, for you will find the kingdom. For you are from it, and to it you will return.”

________________________________

* The Gospel of Thomas consists of 114 sayings, in no readily apparent order, that are attributed to Jesus. The author identifies himself as Jude, Jesus’s identical twin brother. The book was written in Greek no later than the first half of second century, C.E., and it contains some sayings that are similar to but shorter than sayings found in the New Testament gospels. For this reason, many scholars believe that the author probably had not read the New Testament gospels and independently relied on sayings that probably go back to the historical Jesus.

The gospel was regarded as heretical and probably not included in the New Testament because it:

(1) does not mention the apostle Paul’s prescription for salvation (belief in Jesus’s crucifixion, death, physical resurrection and ascension), and

(2) contains language echoing the Gnostic belief that salvation comes from a spiritual resurrection based on knowing that we contain a divine spark and focusing our attention and identity on that spark. Indeed, the author assures the reader that,

These are the secret sayings which the living Jesus spoke and which Didymos** Judas Thomas*** wrote down.

(1) And he said, “Whoever finds the interpretation of these sayings will not experience death.”

(2) Jesus said, “Let him who seeks continue seeking until he finds. When he finds, he will become troubled. When he becomes troubled, he will be astonished, and he will rule over the All.”

(3) Jesus said, “If those who lead you say to you, ‘See, the kingdom is in the sky,’ then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, ‘It is in the sea,’ then the fish will precede you. Rather, the kingdom is inside of you, and it is outside of you. When you come to know yourselves, then you will become known, and you will realize that it is you who are the sons of the living father. But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty.”

I like this Jesus. I am not fond of family values and I believe my spirit is immortal. I do not believe in a physical resurrection of the dead and I do not believe Jesus sacrificed himself to save all human beings from being punished for their sins. He was crucified because he challenged authority.

The Gospel of Thomas was fortuitously discovered in 1947 at Nag Hammadi by an Egyptian camel driver named Muhammad Ali (no relation) and his companions who were searching for camel dung in a public dump site to use as fuel for fires.

**Didymos means twin in Greek

***Thomas means twin in Aramaic (the primary language Jesus spoke)

9 Responses to Jesus was an apocalyptic rabbi who did not believe in family values

  1. bettykath says:

    Off topic: Making of a Murderer is bringing out a lot of stuff. A recent revelation is that there was a man who killed people and then deliberately framed others for the crime. He moved around a lot but hung around while his victim (the second one) was charged and convicted. At least one of these was executed. It wasn’t unusual for him to attend the trials and even take noes. The allegation is that he was living about 1 hour from this crime scene and that he attended the trial. He is now deceased, apparently from natural causes.

    The girlfriend who had a serious drinking problem and was treated badly by authorities is now claiming that he is a monster. (wish I could remember his name). I think she was encouraged by authorities to switch sides but that’s just my opinion.

    • Malisha says:

      A new way to commit murder: Kill somebody and frame another (officially despised) person for it. Then watch the other, whom you have framed, be killed by the State.

      OMG. It is beyond belief but I think it is probably something that has happened repeatedly.

  2. Malisha says:

    Also, “family values” were not, then, what “family values” are cracked up to be (by the Repugnicans) now. First off, they COULDN’t be. Women did not HAVE families. MEN had families. Women were BORN INTO families (their fathers’) and they later became and produced families (their husbands’) so FAMILY VALUES were values that MEN had. Wives, children (both genders) and slaves were property. There were laws that dictated to the men how they were to deal with these property-units they had married, fathered or bought. (Incidentally they bought their wives.)

    A woman or man born of adultery (which was defined as sex between a man and woman, one of which is either married or betrothed to someone other than the sex partner) was, by law, unable to marry. This shows why Jesus never married; his mother was pregnant by someone or something other than Joseph at a time while she was betrothed TO Joseph.

    So the “family values” of that time encompassed lots of things, just as the law of “man and servant” [read: “owner and slave”] encompassed lots of things. But since a man was allowed to have five, six, ten wives, and concubines, and was not forbidden from having children with his concubines either (kinda Schwartzenegger-ish), and since the law of how to relate to people had different provisions for those of your own group and “gentiles” (those of other groups), it would seem a little weird to try to fit those “values” into any present-day social scenario.

    For instance, if neither a man nor a woman was engaged or married, to each other or to anyone else, there was no law against them having consensual sex. The only problem would be that the woman’s father still owned her and he would get much less for her bride price if she did not maintain her virginity, so the guy who had sex with her had not decreased his own value in the society but he and she together (presuming consensual) had decreased HERS. That would be a family value. It would be the woman’s father’s value in her as a commodity he could sell but that he now had to discount 50%. Boo HOO! If the woman had not consented to the sex, but neither she nor the man was engaged or married (to someone else) at the time, it was rape, which was punished either by coerced marriage (if it had taken place in the fields) or by stoning to death (if it had taken place in the town). It’s hard to guess which one was used more often and what the parameters were.

    You CAN see that the “family values” model of the Bible isn’t exactly what would work here, today. Even in the fields.

  3. Two sides to a story says:

    The historical Jesus reminds me far more of a Buddhist monk or Tibetan lama than of the family values guy who died for the sins of the world as promoted by fundamentalist Christianity.

    • Although indescribable, the truth abides in plain view. Pity that so many are blind to it. Hence the use of parables to describe it followed by the expression “for those who have eyes to see” and a sage nodding of the head.

  4. Malisha says:

    Paul’s vision of who Jesus was, and what that should mean to Christians, was definitely a work of PAUL’s and neither a work of Jesus nor of any divine power or true disciple. As for the rest of it, any explanation or various amalgams of all possible explanations are just as good as each other, on a spiritual level. But for sure, Jesus was a radical, a liberal, and a psychologically complex personality.

    • Paul was a lawyer. What else can I say?

      Jesus also was an apocalipticist who believed the end of the world was at hand and would happen within the lifetimes of his disciples.

      I don’t agree that “any explanation or various amalgams of all possible explanations are just as good as each other, on a spiritual level,” because there are 3 criteria that historians use to estimate the probability that Jesus said or did not say something attributed to him.

      For example, he probably said the parable of the sheep and the goats because that is not something that a Christian likely would have made up since it’s a statement that salvation depends on good acts, not on beliefs. Paul’s main point was salvation depends on believing that Jesus died for everyone’s sins and was resurrected to the flesh. Acts did not matter. This passes the criterion of dissimilarity because it differs from what a Christian like Paul would have expected.

      The other 2 are contextual credibility and multiple independent attestation.

      • Malisha says:

        What I meant by that sentence was that determining whether or not any one particular act occurred in history or any one particular statement was made by the actual man Jesus of Nazareth, if one chooses to be a Christian these particulars don’t matter, on a spiritual level. As in, “to be a Christian, one does not need to have an actual ‘true or false’ belief in a sentence either spoken or not spoken by Jesus.” That was all I meant, but I wasn’t terribly clear about it.

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