The ironically named Good Friday is rapidly approaching, and for Christians everywhere it is commemorated as a fairly significant event in history: The day the Son of God was executed as a sacrifice for our sins. As a thinking person, I encourage all other persons to ponder what exactly it is they are commemorating. I provide you this short but hearty essay with plenty of lead time before the big day, to provide the fertilizer to sow the cognitive seeds of analysis.
If one is to commemorate this alleged historical event–and I say alleged because there is no historical evidence that it happened–one should understand what it is they are commemorating. For this event to be significant in any way, one must believe in the underlying premise wholeheartedly, for if not, it is merely another woeful case of capital punishment, which was popular in the Roman Empire in the First Century, and remains popular in the less civilized nations of the world today.
One must believe that there is a Creator being, a God, and that this God created the Universe–which we know to be 13.8 Billion years old–and created life; at a minimum, human life. One must believe that this God became angry with His first two humans, and punished them. He not only punished them however, He punished their children, grandchildren and all generations of humans to follow. The original duo’s heinous act of defiance enraged this God so much, that He felt the need to punish all of the innocent people who would be born forever after. If you are going to commemorate Good Friday, you have to be ‘All In’ believing that what I have described thus far is an actual historically accurate account.
Let us fast forward many generations, so that we come upon a time when the Creator finally decided to offer up an opportunity for the world’s inhabitants to be forgiven for crimes against Him that they didn’t actually commit. The best way for Him to do this, was to impregnate a young Palestinian woman, possibly against her will, using His most Holy Ghost to do the dirty work for Him and inject her with godly sperm. The Creator would have this young woman give birth to His son, who was also the Creator Himself, as the first part of His plan for a pathway to forgiveness. The Creator’s Son–who was also the Creator–would grow to adulthood and begin to preach to anyone who would listen about the route to forgiveness; which was necessary even if one hadn’t actually done anything that needed forgiving. While I despise being redundant, it is crucial for this thinking experiment that I remind you that you must accept in full everything I’ve written to this point if you are going to commemorate the approaching Christian Holy Day of Good Friday.
After achieving some notoriety for His ability to gain a modest following, and for teaching uncomfortably new ideas, God’s Son was arrested, tried and convicted of some minor offense or other. Exactly what the offense was is incidental to the tale for it was just the means to an end. The real purpose, as designed by the Creator of the Universe, was that His Son (who I remind you was also Him) was to be mocked, ridiculed, beaten, tortured and nailed to a wooden cross to hang there until He died. This filthy, bloody human sacrifice had to happen because the Creator of the Universe, angry at all of His human creation, felt that the only suitable way to offer innocent humans a path to avoid His eternal wrath for crimes they did not in fact commit, was to sacrifice Himself to Himself, in order to appease Himself from His own anger, and to save humanity from Himself. Yes, Jesus died to save humanity from what Jesus will do to humanity if humanity doesn’t allow Jesus to save them.
This utterly illogical, ridiculous and obscene tale of vengeance and bloodthirsty retribution must be believed in full, if one is to commemorate Good Friday as a day worthy of commemorating. The account is so absurd as a premise, that it would likely be passed on by any respectable publisher of fantasy fiction, yet this is precisely what the Holy Day is about, for if a man was executed by the Roman Empire some 2,000 years ago, but He was not in fact the Creator of the Universe, albeit acting as His own son at the time, then His would have been just one more of countless tales of inflicting death as punishment. Sad of course, but hardly sufficient to warrant a day of commemoration by a third of the world’s people.
All I ask is that you think about it for a bit, before following blindly along like sheep, which interestingly, is what the church is prone to labeling their followers.
“I say alleged because there is no historical evidence that it happened–”
At least three historians who were contemporaries of Jesus wrote about Him, his life ,crucifixion and resurrection.
Josepha’s was one.
None of them were Christians and Christ came from low estate. None of them would have written about such a commoner unless there was something uniquely uncommon about Him.
I believe another was Tasitus.
Thanks for reading, and for your comment. The historicity of Jesus is a fascinating study, but there is no contemporary documentation of him. Tacitus wasn’t even born until what would have been 25 years after the death of Jesus and he didn’t start writing the book in which one passage references Jesus until 116 AD. Josephus’ Antiquities of the Jews was written around 93–94 AD, so some 60 years after Jesus’ death. The Gospels and letters from Paul were all written well after the life and times of Jesus as well, so I think my position is well supported.
“If we apply to the New Testament, as we should, the same sort of criteria as we should apply to other ancient writings containing historical material, we can no more reject Jesus’ existence than we can reject the existence of a mass of pagan personages whose reality as historical figures is never questioned.” Classical historian Michael Grant
Even many skeptics agree with this statement. I totally disagree with you’re statement. We have no other historical figure with anything close to this amount of written proof. 5,000 extant copies from ancient times concern Christ. You are in the wrong camp and are a minority as well with your view.
If you find the evidence for Jesus’ existence compelling, that’s great. However, that’s not actually what I wrote about. Let’s assume for argument’s sake there is good evidence to support the execution of this man. As I wrote, he would be just one more of many who have been executed. The underlying concept of why this was planned by the Creator of all that is seen and unseen is what I opined upon.
PS considering that the large majority of humans are not Christians I don’t think I’m in the minority, but even if I were, I’m perfectly comfortable there. Jumping on the bandwagon gives me no sense of security. Quite the contrary.
No talking snakes for me either thanks
A concise exposé of that peculiarly ridiculous belief. As Dawkins said, “it’s barking mad”.
That’s rich coming from a man who believes everything came from nothing.
You left out of your little expose that our original parents were only given one rule to follow, and they broke that rule. We, just like them, have a choice. It was Jesus, not the church, who first called his followers sheep, for our proneness to wander away from Him.
And you have also left out the existence of evil, which is a crucial element in understanding the reasons for God’s actions.
I wrote about the concepts that underlie the Christian Holy Day of Good Friday. I’m not sure how one conflates that with what one believes I believe about the origins of everything.
The first part of my comment was directed towards the comment before about Dawkins, sorry for the confusion.
Thanks, no worries. I appreciate you reading & certainly taking the time to comment.