Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Did He or Didn't He?

Here on Mercy, I’ve written posts based on thoughts and topics piqued by Adam Hamilton. I’ve  thought about/meant to write many more posts based on things I’ve read that he authored (Why?) and sermons that he preached. On the Church of the Resurrection website, where he is senior pastor, there is a vast collection of sermon archives dating back to 1999.

This new year, as part of my goal of getting more structured in my “devotions”, I decided I would listen to sermons (by Adam Hamilton, Nadia Bolz-Weber and Greg Boyd) AND read the Bible (Book of Common Prayer reading plan) while exercising at the gym. Talk about multitasking. So far, so good. Well….so far, pretty good. Not a failure, not a raging success. Still plugging along.

So, I randomly picked a sermon series from last January called Jesus: Myth, Madman or Messiah and listened to the first sermon in the series, “Searching for the Historical Jesus.” I listened to it twice. Learned a thing or two and picked up a different perspective about the historical Jesus. From the sermon notes available on the website:

Let’s begin with an easy question, as there is great consensus even among secular scholars,agnostics and atheists that Jesus actually lived. He was a real, historical person. Dr. Louise Antony, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Massachusetts and a noted atheist stated,“I don't personally know a single atheist who would deny that Jesus existed.” Bart Ehrman, a popular agnostic writer and professor at the University of North Carolina recently wrote a book called, Did Jesus Exist? in which he offers an emphatic yes....

Well, isn’t that cool? And if you want to read a short writing by Bart Ehrman on Huffington Post discussing why he is sure Jesus existed, click HERE.

More from the sermon:

I finished reading Zealot last week. Aslan lays out the premise of the book,
writing: “In the end, there are only two hard historical facts about Jesus of Nazareth upon which we can confidently rely: the first is that Jesus was a Jew who led a popular Jewish movement in Palestine...the second is that Rome crucified him for doing so.”

To watch a 27 minute Huffington post video of Aslan discussing his views about Jesus, click HERE.

Another New Year’s post more frequently on this blog. In order to do that (and also fit in living my life/exercising/and working at a challenging and full time plus some job) I’ve got to be less picky. This post feels a bit unfinished and unpolished. In the past, I would save it in draft form and plan a series…..which most of the time never actually came to fruition.  

So here it it is. There is fodder for those who might want to read/listen to a bit more. I have intentions to write more about the sermon because it piqued many thoughts and insights. We’ll see if that happens.  For now...I’ve gotta’ get moving and get ready for work.

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