Thursday, June 7, 2007

what makes jesus so great?

I've heard several atheists (I'm sorry I can't provide the links, it was awhile ago) say that although they don't believe in god, they think the teachings of jesus have merit.

I know that at Evil they have a couple of pages dedicated to the nasty things jesus advocated.

What about the good stuff? What teachings of jesus do you believe (if any) have merit? That are actually worth knowing about and putting into practice?


King Aardvark said...

That's kind of a tricky one. Like most of the bible, Jesus contradicts himself a lot. On one hand, I can say how I appreciate the "love your enemy" and "hate the sin not the sinner" stuff since this mindset can help diffuse many situations before the anger escalates into violence. On the other hand, in another passage Jesus will say something about not reaching heaven unless you hate your father or some such, so you're left wondering if he really meant what he's supposed to have said or if it's all just pulled out of the proverbial ass at random.

Joe said...

I like the "pray behind locked doors" part, though I don't pray. And, helping the poor isn't always a bad idea. But like the King said, most of it is pulled out of the proverbial ass.

janice said...

King, I've never heard about hating the/your father thing. Could you point me in some direction so I can investigate further please? Thanks

janice said...

Nevermind King, I just found it at the link FE provided.

Summer Squirrel said...

There's no proof, as we all know, that jesus is a historically figure. With that in mind, jesus telling us to turn the other cheek is good advice in some circumstances.


Tommy said...

Here is a post I did way back in October on this subject that gives an atheist perspective on Jesus:

As for whether Jesus was a real person, I am inclined to give the benefit of the doubt that he was. The Jesus of the Gospels has personality, but unlike the serene depiction seen in many pictures, in the Gospels he strikes me as a very testy and impatient man.

Fiery Ewok said...

Thank you Tommy for the link to your blog, I'll give the post a read.

I have no access to any of the historical documents that may or may not prove jesus' existence.

I have heard that researchers/historians have been unable to find verification of his existence in Roman records, and apparently they were meticulous about their executions. But I wouldn't know.

Tommy said...

I don't mean to be some sort of Jesus advocate. I would say that the lack of historical documentation dating to his lifetime does not mean he did not exist, but it certainly diminishes the claims that Christians make about him.

Since women don't have virgin births, the virgin birth of Jesus has to be met with skepticism. The visit by the Magi has too much of a Rube Goldberg quality to it.

Charred Atheist said...

I've always supported Jesus's killing of fig trees, you know those are just terrorists waiting to evolve..

Fiery Ewok said...

Welcome Charred! Always happy to have a new face appear on my blog!

I stopped by yours and I hope you keep writing. You've got a great start there.

As for the fig tree- it deserved exactly what it got. Think about it. The creator of the universe's son was hungry. We all know how jesus gets when his blood sugar gets low. When the son of god is hungry, he's hungry now. Not next fig season. That fig tree had a duty to provide lunch and it failed.

Punishment for not serving Jesus his mid-day snack?- DEATH!