‘Jesus’ Category Archives

30
Jul

A HISTORY LESSON: religion, midlife crisises and violence

by Arnold Jago in Faith, History, Jesus, Persecution, Truth

In the year 622AD, the Prophet Muhammad, a 52-year old preacher of peace, was gaining very few converts among his community in Mecca.
Should he just go on preaching until he got too old — or until perhaps irate unbelieving enemies killed him?
No. He changed tactics, moving north to Medina – now as a warlord – raiding, enforcing conversions, killing men, women and children.
Tactics still in use today….
In the year 29AD, Jesus Christ, aged 30-odd, a moderately successful preacher in rural Galilee, took his disciples south to confront his opposition in Jerusalem.
No violence – still simply preaching God’s “kingdom” and condemning hypocrisy.
These methods soon led to his death on a cross.
Which of these two teachers was strong and which was weak?
Today’s professing Christians seem weak.
Not so much because they fight badly, but because they compromise with secularism and hypocrisy….
Which includes the use of violence in ways incompatible with the gospel of their Founder.

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3
Jan

GOOD THOUGHTS FOR THE COMING YEAR: from Queen Elizabeth II.

by Arnold Jago in Common Sense, Faith, Jesus

Did you watch/hear the Queen’s Christmas speech?
I think it is very good.

31
Dec

MURDER OF CHILDREN: holy innocents, then and now.

by Arnold Jago in Death, History, Jesus, Multiculturalism, Persecution, Recent Developments

For Christians, December 28 is/was the Feast of the Holy Innocents”.
The “innocents” being babies murdered by King Herod, who feared a possible new-born alternative king.
“When Herod realised that he had been outwitted by the Magi (wise men) he gave orders to kill all boys in the Bethlehem region aged two years and under….” (Matthew’s gospel, chapter 2)
We know who killed those Bethlehem victims.
Who is murdering the hundreds of innocents being killed right now — daily, week in, week out?
Don’t we and our politicians and media bend over backwards to avoid suggesting that it’s mostly done by Muslims?
Is Islam, in fact, an ideology of violence dressed up as a religion?
We’d like that not to be true. Don’t we all long for a day when all Muslims renounce violence?
But we see little reason to expect it.
Denial and lies certainly aren’t helping.

6
Dec

CHRISTMAS: why bother?

by Arnold Jago in Contemplation, Faith, Family, Forgiving, Happiness, History, Jesus, Lifestyle, Modern Church, Multiculturalism, Truth, Youth

Why celebrate Christmas?
Because we can’t help liking, honouring and admiring this unique person, Jesus Christ.
He was the ultimate one-off.
Above all, see how he totally refused to compromise.
When his challenging message was leading inevitably to his own painful death, he made his message even more challenging, more confronting.
There was no mistaking it:
“Love your enemies!”
Pray to God, saying:
“Forgive us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us!”
Yes, the Christian church is faulty — tragically unworthy of him who founded it….
Yet it’s in the church that we can hear his gospel read and preached.
In the church we can meet together with others who at least have a go at living Christ’s way.
Jesus Christ, born so long ago, can make you and me better.
He offers a motive for our children to grow into people who are better.
That’s why Christmas is important.
Have a good one.

27
Nov

THE CHURCH’S FOCUS FOR NEXT YEAR: the gospel according to Saint Matthew.

by Arnold Jago in Faith, Jesus, Modern Church

Today is the first Sunday of Advent — from the Church’s viewpoint it’s the first Sunday of a new year.
For the last 12 months, the gospel readings for Mass have mostly come from Saint Luke’s gospel.
Now, for 12 months, they’ll come mostly from Saint Matthew’s gospel.
Interestingly, Matthew is probably the gospel least compatible with the “discernment-type” belief-system of Pope Francis.
Matthew’s first 2 chapters describe Jesus’ family tree, his birth and the 3 wise men visiting.
Then comes John the Baptist, his predecessor-prophet, with the message: “Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand.”
Soon after that John is arrested – and that’s when Jesus starts his own public teaching ministry.
His theme? “Repent for the kingdom of God is at hand.”
Sounds familiar?
But there’s a difference.
Jesus makes it clear that his message is to be even tougher than previous prophets.
More demanding in at least 6 areas.
They are spelt out in Matthew’s gospel chapter 5 (from verses 21 to 48).

18
Jan

CATHOLICS AND JEWS: confused messages?

by Arnold Jago in Faith, History, Jesus, Modern Church, Multiculturalism

The other day, Pope Francis made his first visit to a synagogue as pontiff, greeting Rome’s Jewish community in a show of “interfaith friendship”.

Six weeks ago he was reported to have stated that Catholics should not try to convert Jews to Christianity.

Did he say that?

We’ll never know, but that’s what the media reported and he hasn’t since contradicted it.

My problem with that is that Jesus Christ reportedly said to his disciples, as a parting message, more or less the opposite:

“Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you . . . you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judaea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.”

(Matthew’s gospel chapter 28 and Acts chapter1)