Is the church representing Jesus Christ’s vision of the world?
Many historians and analysts cast doubts the biblical characters (Abraham, Moses, Saul, David…) really existed, since the only source is the Holy Scripts and the oldest writings found are thousand years after the events; but Jesus Christ is a different story, his teachings coming for more then one source, and his life is so inspirational that the most powerful faith on Earth started with those events, bearing his name, Christianity.
I doubt that the resurrection (that is central to Christianity) really happened, but for me Jesus’ guidance marked a turning point in humankind civilization.
Jesus was kind and compassionate, a Jewish rabbi that revolted against the other rabbis because of their greed and misconduct; actually, the only time recorded as Jesus being violent is when he turned upside-down the tables in the temple where the other rabbis received gifts for themselves, claiming the gifts are for God. Maybe this event and stories like the good Samaritan obfuscated the temple’s rabbi to a point that they joined hands to condemn Jesus to death, asking Pilate (the roman governor) to crucify him.
In a time when the law was “an eye for an eye” Jesus advised his followers ”do not resist the one who is evil. But if anyone slaps you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”… Even today for many it is difficult to accept such a behaviour.
His vision that a good society should be based on understanding and forgiving is well outlined in the story below. Those times the traditions (and the law of the land, by the way) were very tough and unfair for women. A woman caught cheating her husband was stoned to death by the angry mob; and some of them were rather raped. Many women were forced in arranged marriage, and when they committed such an act was rather out of love, and for the man was for pleasure; still, the man got a tap on the shoulder, and the woman killed in a horrific way.
And here is the story…
A woman was caught cheating her husband and the mob ready to stone her; but someone in the crowed stopped the process, asking Jesus to be the judge. Christ was known as understanding and forgiving, but in the same time fair. Going against such a powerful tradition, and pardon the woman, would have been probably ignored by the crowd and Christ’s reputation blackened. But he could not accept such a barbarity. Jesus picked up a stone, turned to the crowed with his hand stretched and said: “The one who think never committed a sin in his life take this stone and hit me.” The crowd dropped the stones and left the plaza.
Going back to my original question… with such a positive message to the world, how comes that the institution representing Jesus on Earth have such questionable standings along centuries, involved in murders, false accusations, bloody fighting among different Christian branches (Catholic, Orthodox, Protestants, Anglicans,…). My take: the church became an institution that fight for itself rather then fighting to promote the true Christian dogma.
I cannot tell it better than Dostoevsky did in one of his stories, and well explained in the article below in Wikipedia…