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Either this man was, and is, the Son of God, or else a madman or something worse.

imageAbout four days ago, Joe Boyd (pictured), the founder of Rebel Pilgrim Productions posted Confessions of a Christian Skeptic in the Huffington Post religion blog. This paragraph seemed an echo C. S. Lewis:

Any church I have ever been a part of wouldn’t have let that Jesus within 100 yards of a pulpit. No matter what I want to tell myself, I would have rejected him had I been given the chance. He was (and still is) a lot to try to take in. If we could step away from what we think we know about Jesus and see what the record seems to show… I think we’d agree that he probably came off, at best, as a well-intentioned delusional cult leader. At worst he’s a crazed maniacal egomaniac. Or, I suppose, he could have been sent to us from God with good news. That’s the third option.

But then, too, this reply from a reader who calls himself steamchip seems to echo Lewis, except that Lewis never mentioned the shroud that I know of:

"as a well-intentioned delusional cult leader…. A a crazed maniacal egomaniac. …sent to us from God with good news. "

The disciples after they saw bloody Jesus hang from that terrible tree, taken down and placed into the tomb were probably thinking much of the same. They saw the miracles: the sick healed, the deaf heard, the blind saw, the lame walked. Yet they were looking for an exit strategy. Did they know Jesus, passerby’s asked. Uhg no, have not heard of the guy, that was not me with him..

Then He was alive. Barley recognizable. In His newly transfigured state, he was looking quite good. The miracle of the Resurrection changed their minds. The disciples did an about face and though most came to a bad end, their Jesus faith no longer waned.

The Shroud of Turin exists as some say, as forensic evidence of that miracle. No scientist can completely penetrate its secrets, no artist can duplicate it. Even if it is THE artifact of the Resurrection, and as the faith healers of more modern times suggest, the rough-hewn, Smith Wigglesworth ( 1859-1947); demure yet efficien[t], James Moore Hickson (1868- 1933); and flamboyant and theatrical Aimee Semple McPherson (1890-1944); –that Jesus Christ has the power to perform healing as in ancient times; that Jesus still has to become YOUR Christ.

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