Sunday, 21 February 2016

A puzzle about Jesus

I'm a big supporter of Jesus but I do have a puzzle about the fuss made over his resurrection.

Jesus resurrected three people Nain, Luke 7:11-17, Jairus' daughter, Mark 5:21-43 et al and Lazarus John 11:1-44.

On the way to Jairus' house and almost as an aside, and seemingly without stopping, he cured a woman who had been menstruating non stop for 12 years.

After resurrecting the young woman he thanked his father. We must assume his father in this case was either God the Father or the Holy Ghost, and it would seem that while Jesus was in human form he wasn't quite fully God because he needed a bit of help from 'above'.

Although Jesus can be a bit gnostic at times and refer the the 'kingdom' (of God) that is within us all.

He had to travel to Bethany on the outskirts of Jerusalem to see Lazarus and was in danger of being stoned for the things he was preaching.

If he made a regular habit of saying wine becomes my blood at supper time, that would have been enough to get him stoned in those days. Drinking blood, and especially human blood is an abomination to Jews and so would be the blasphemy of all blasphemies. Second only to insulting God itself. God as a male wasn't part of the Jewish belief. There were plenty of male Gods around, Mithras for example, who had wine changed into blood to be drunk at meals. It was later Christians, or possibly Jesus himself who androgenized what was to become the occidental triple Roman God of the West.

His disciples suggested travelling by night but Jesus made a comment with hidden meanings about travelling during daylight. I think this comment means stand up for what you believe to be true even if you will get into trouble. Even to the extent being stoned or burned at the stake. So I think Jesus would have been in favour me writing this koan.

When he got to where Lazarus lived he was met by Mary (Magdalene) who told him Lazarus had been dead for, at least four days, he'd been in a tomb for four days. So he was probably dead for about five days. You were entombed very quickly in those days, there was no laying about on trestles in the front room for a week.

When they got to the tomb, which was a cave, it had a big stone in front of it. Bethany was very close to Jerusalem so it must have been near the tomb Jesus would eventually use. perhaps it was the same one?

It might be worth noting that to have a tomb, even a cave, you had to be quite well off, at least middle class a skilled craftsperson (like Saul) or a professional and upwards. Plebs did't have tombs they just put dead bodies out in the desert or somewhere similar until all the flesh had gone and they could put the bones in an ossuary (or down a hole somewhere that served as an ossuary for the plebs).

So Jesus' friends were middle class at least. Worth mentioning that the middle class did very well under Roman rule. The Romans left the middle class of the empire well alone in a similar way that David Cameron won't let his Rottweiler, Ian Duncan Smith - IBS (sorry IDS) loose on the pensioners of Britain. I digress...

Jesus told Mary to roll away the stone. Mary said there would be a horrible smell. Jesus groaned at her lack of faith. When the stone was rolled away Jesus told Lazarus to come on out; and out he came full of life dressed in his grave clothes.

OK so what's the big puzzle?

Why is there such a big deal about him resurrecting himself when he had already done it three times before. The last time involved a tomb and the rolling of a stone - almost like a dress rehearsal.

It should have been expected that he would resurrect himself...

What do you think?