Is Jesus G-d?

May 31, 2007

It's a biggie. But this question is not my primary problem with G-d.

Still, no doubt: the issue is a sizzler. About 12 days ago an Israeli news agency reported: Chief Rabbinate Finalizes Ban on Christian Women's Conference. The facts are pretty clear. Israel's Chief Rabbinate (CR) issued a ban forbidding Jewish participation in two "Christian-sponsored conferences." The reason? In spite of advertised objectives to focus on social issues, the CR decided that both events were subtle attempts to persuade Jews "that Jesus is Messiah."

Neither conference was cancelled, however. And last week all sponsors announced success.

But oh the uproar that this ban provoked. Is Jesus the Messiah? Is he G-d?. In 131 Talkbacks there was a scathing storm of words. People on all sides of the issue called each other liars, idolaters and traitors.

It was nauseating. Not because people embrace different answers than I. And not because of anyone's intensity or passion. This question is anything but easy. Arguably it's not even nice. Those who wrestle with it should be fighting hard.

But for heaven's sake with G-d, not each other! Why? Because the G-d of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob blessed his people by naming them Israel, a wonderfully descriptive word that means "he who contends with G-d." It is a designation that is an invitation too.

The idea of G-d inviting us to wrestle shocks a lot of people. In fact I think it's self-evident that most monotheists believe G-d is someone to whom we must submit or die.

The word Islam, for example, means submission--although Muslims are hardly the only ones who approach G-d from this paradigm. Many if not most Christians believe the only way to G-d is submit or die. Sure they have different dogmas than Islam, but it's still submit-or-die.

And moi? As a defendant in G-d's Court of Law here's my affidavit: Jesus is the Messiah. What's more he is the uniquely singular Son of G-d. Meaning that he is, at once, completely human and completely G-d.

So, this means my faith's at ease because I have "right" answers? Oh sure, life's a breeze. The 10 zillion problems raised by my affirmations don't bother me a bit. Like: if this answer's true, why has G-d allowed so many atrocities in Jesus' name?

Ah, but perhaps my sworn testimony is an attempt to convert those who disagree--or maybe recruit gullibles who've never thought about it, hmm? Right; as if I can change anybody's heart about anything. Shoot, I can't even convert myself to stop eating junk food.

But at the very least doesn't my affirmation mean that I regard myself superior to those who answer differently? G-d forbid. Hear me on this: regardless of your answer, you are alright with me.

Why? Cuz charm is deceitful, beauty is vain, and words alone are cheap. Anyone can say anything. This is Torah truth, not mine: it is the heart G-d's after. And what kind of heart? Get this: a circumcised one; yup, one that's been cut up with a knife, then left wounded and scarred for life.

And that's why my biggest problem with G-d isn't the question about Jesus.

Go ahead, take a look. My wife and I are proud parents to 3 sons. They are wonderfully unique. I love each one so much I would gladly give my life to rescue theirs.

My biggest problem with G-d culminated 7 years ago today. That's when one of our sons died. His name is Taylor and he was four days shy of turning 12 years old.

He didn't die at the hands of evil men or by a sudden accident. Instead for 2 long years he fought a war with cancer. It literally hacked off an entire hip and leg, then maimed his torso too. In spite of all my tearful prayers, G-d did not rescue him from 24 months of torture or from a horrific death.

So what have I done with this, my biggest problem with G-d?

I have done the same thing Taylor always did with me. Even in agony and knowing that I could not take his place, he always accepted my invitation to move toward dad.

Sometimes his fists wailed away at pillows that I used to help absorb the blows. But most of the time my son turned to me and held on tight. Resting his head on my chest, we talked and laughed and cried. Somehow he found nourishment in my heartbroken love. It is the greatest honor I have ever known.

That's why I thank my divine Opponent for naming his people Israel. Sometimes it's tempting, but I don't have time to fight with you. I'm too busy wrestling in muck and mire with G-d, clinging in my woundedness to him, crying out in protest and in pride,

My son! My Son!! MY SON!!!

5 comments:

Gigi said...

Taylor's life reached near and far. His courage and determination drew a watching audience to Christ. We miss Taylor with you and miss him with your family. His legacy lives on and his residence in heaven draws us heavenward. On the journey with your family, the Sanders

Anonymous said...

I am so doggone proud to know you. Keep blogging. I'm loving it. Ang

Fred said...

meaningful words, thank you. But your personal affidavit is more potent then your religious one, I mean to say, your son is real, his life was real. Jesus on the other hand is not real, nor is he any son of G-d

Fred said...

Meaningful words; thank you. But your personal affidavit is more potent then your religious one. What I mean to say is that your son is real, his life was real. Jesus on the other hand is not real, nor is he any son of G-d

Anonymous said...

Shalom yes God help us with real big tings in live you are a winner with Him continue the good work ,tanks for your testimony of love and Faith in God even wend some hurting tings happening in ones lives ,Hebrews tel us about Faith heroes some shot the lions mouths others cross a sea but other heroes ware kild in so many ways but still are cold by God heroes ,victory with God as a different meaning than worldly victory
You ave chose the right side

Shalom !!1
Yeshua is coming !!!