of Jesus
I thank thee, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hidden these things from the wise
and understanding and revealed them to babes; yea, Father, for such was thy gracious will


After finding error in parts of the New Testament, (Paul's teaching), on what do you base your faith?  Certainly, if a part is found to be suspect, it must all come into question.  I do not mean to be trite, but do you simply say, "This part sounds good to me, therefore I believe that Christ is the Messiah?

The utterances of Jesus of Nazareth as recorded in the New Testament is the basis of my faith.

I do not proceed as you suggest.  My quest began with the ethical questions of war (I was in the Navy during WW II) and racial discrimination  (I grew up in the segregated rural south where a black person was a "nigger" and he better believe it.)  From these sprang the consciousness of many other inequities, including wealth/poverty and human bondage (slavery) issues.  

Then, as I read the gospels, I could see that Jesus was speaking directly to just such issues as these, and he gave me hope of finding some answers.  So, I claimed his promise:


    [31] Jesus then said to the Jews who had believed in him, If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples,
    [32] And you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free.
He has not disappointed me.  I have found in him the answers to my most pressing questions, answers that make sense of the world and of my experience of life in this world.  That is why I believe in him and trust him with my life and soul. I should also emphasize that his message is very simple, such that an ignorant or unlearned person can grasp it.  Yes, even a child.  It is the wise and the learned that have trouble with it, because they look right over it in the quest of complexity!

One of the most difficult things for me to come to terms with was that Christendom has completely misrepresented him to the world and continues to do so.  So, as we grow up in a "Christian nation" we are thoroughly conditioned (brain washed) by the daily input of fallacious ideas, mistaken values and unremedied despair.  

You are correct, of course, in saying that "if a part is found suspect, it must all come into question."  I questioned Jesus, but every time I did, he gave me a good answer.  

Jesus is different.  If you haven't noticed this, you will if you stick with him.  One of the most significant differences is that he is absolutely non partisan in any human contention, all of which are transparently founded on the love of life in all parties.  I doubt very much that one can truthfully make the same statement of any other teacher of religion, all of whom retain a strong interest in mundane affairs.  To give substance to this assertion, it means, for example, that neither Jesus nor the Father has any favorites in any human conflict, such as the current U.S./Iraq affair.  They side with nobody!


Because everybody in this and all human conflicts is moved by their anxiety for earthly values and interests, including life in this world.  But here is the Word:


    [19] Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal,
    [20] but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal.
    [21] For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Jesus is concerned with our hearts, and what we treasure within them.  So, the issue is not East or West, or Democracy or Communism, or Islam or Christendom.  It is earth/heaven.  It is life in time, or life in eternity.  He has revealed the Truth and the choice is ours.  Having made the choice, we are free.

The churchmen, under the influence of Paul, have misrepresented the core elements of the Truth that we have in Jesus.  Most notably, the doctrine of the sacrificial, substitutionary atonement by crucifixion is far from the Lord.  So, if you stick with Jesus, and I hope you do, you must be prepared for a radical revision of any doctrine that springs from the churchmen.