Jesus of Nazareth Versus The 72 Virgins
Jesus of Nazareth was heard to say, "If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. I am the vine, you are the branches: He that abides in me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit: for without me you can do nothing. If you were of the world, the world would love his own: but because you are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hates you." (jn15:6,5,19)
Those are some tough, "sounds-like-science-fiction-to-me" words that Jesus of Nazareth spoke shortly before the Romans hung Him out to dry. While Jesus knew what was about to happen, those around Him then didn't. The quotation shown above probably sounded as strange and outlandish to them as it sounds to most people now, including this writer.
Everything about Jesus of Nazareth is other-worldly, alien, and completely unfamiliar. The easiest way to deal with any information about Jesus of Nazareth is to ignore the information. Pretend it doesn't exist. Ridicule and then pointedly ignore anyone who embraces Jesus of Nazareth as the only Begotten Son of God; The Christ of God and The Savior of the Living Soul.
Sure, the good ol' USA and most of the Western world is free and people are entitled by common law to worship "god" however they choose.
But please (many say), "Don't trouble me with ideas about being 'in the world but not of the world,' or any of that other Jesus-stuff. I've got work to do and if God wants to deal with me, one-on-one, here I am. Let Him come on down and give me some personal face-time. That is, IF (big eye-eff) God exists. From what I've seen, your big-time God Almighty must be taking a coffee-break because in case you haven't noticed, things are coming unraveled all over the world. I mean, what's up with a "god" who creates a world and people to live in it, and then allows such cruelty, terror, suffering, disease, famine, torture, horror...YOU GETTIN' MY DRIFT HERE, BUD? If the God-man Jesus you say loves us all so much really loves us all so damn much, how's come there is so much misery and pain? Answer me that one, pal. This oughta be good for a coupla laffs."
People all over the earth are being force-fed a bellyful of "religion." On the outside, looking in, it would appear that all the trouble in this old world can be laid on the doorstep of any religious building. No "religion" of any kind is exempt. Religion on planet Earth is filled with strife, bickering, and constant disagreement. Every zealot of every religious stripe believes his "religion" is the way...the only way for people to live and, if you don't live "that way" then something bad will happen. Ancient eastern religions say you keep going around and around until you get it right. The farther West you move the less chance there is of a second chance. By the time you get to America, buddy, "you're going straight to HELL if you don't believe in the LORD JEEASUs."
All-in-all, every form of human religion contributes to the present form of violence and terror being prosecuted by the zealots of Islam against the larger religious world. As far as the Islamics are concerned, anyone who does not follow the teachings of the KORAN is an infidel and should dispatched, a.s.a.p., to the regions of the damned. The followers of Mohammed are now front-and-center in the global religious perspective. Most people, (at least those who aren't presently being blown to bits by an Islamic zealot wearing a vest full of exploding dynamite) chuckle nervously when they hear about the 72 virgins and all the other nutty stuff that the followers of prophet Mohammed believe.
But then, from the outside looking in, the question is surely a fair one: Are the fantastic beliefs that motivate Islamic zealotry really MORE FANTASTIC than the fantastic beliefs that motivate a highly motivated fundamentalist "christian"?
Certainly, the answer must be "No." When it gets right down to the real nitty-gritty, all "religion" is based on the fantastic, phantasmagoric, woo-woo world of spiritual, supernatural, persons, places and things that the religious devotees and zealots say will bring peace of mind, prosperity, and a happy sense of well-being to those who adopt the way of this-or-that religion. It's no wonder that RELIGION is considered by many to be "the opiate of the masses." A fuzzy dream-world of feel-good nonsense that keeps the little people occupied while the big fish get on with the "real" business of exploiting the stupid, religion-deluded little people. Work! Work, you stupid slaves. Work and pay tribute to your superior and enlightened masters!
The cruelty of a perishing Soul, lost and forsaken in the darkness of atheistic hubris: such a Soul will stop-at-nothing to acquire the means for indulging itself in every whim of desire for any imaginable pleasure. The now-commonplace and bizarre desolation of innocent children visited on the innocent by twisted and depraved Souls who lack the skill for acquiring money and power but "feel" no less entitled to their fair share of carnal indulgence and pleasureŚlay their demoniac depravity at the feet of the altar of all the humanistic religion in the world. No exceptions. Blame "religion." Blame the "devil." Blame the "system" that allows people to fall thru the cracks of a socialistic tabletop that would have enough for everyone if people weren't so greedy and self-centered.
And that's where the rub comes in: It's the people, stupid. People being "themselves" all at once, all the time, all over the face of the earth. Nobody can ever really, consistently and accurately, predict what anybody else will do. Nothing in this world is as unpredictable as a human being. Actuarial "science" puts on a show of forecasting (in general terms using large numbers of people) what the "average" lifespan of a human creature might be. Insurance companies make their money by betting on the "laws of average." But when the number of those taken in the "average" dwindles to just one, single human creature, all bets are off because there's no way to ever really know with certainty what will happen to one person or what that one person will do. The famous "Uncertainty Principle" that Dr. Heisenberg dreamed up more than applies to the whirling mass of humanity that ebbs and flows over the crust of the earth. Taken as a whole, an observant person might see certain predictable movements in the sea of humanity. Taken individually, every person is as unpredictable as an earthquake or the wind. Earthquake happens when it happens, or not. Wind blows when it blows, or not. And there is never any more or less than a 50/50 chance of "it" happening, or not.
The "prediction" business is a big business in this modern world. Everybody wants to minimize their risk and maximize their chances for success. Great gobs of money are made every day by people whose business it is to convince other people that they can sell you a system that will "guarantee" results: in the stock market, in losing weight, in getting a date with a beautiful girl or a handsome guy, in baking a cake: no endeavor of human enterprise is without it's experts who have perfected a method for foolproof success in that endeavor. Everything looks like a sure thing, until you read the fine print. The disclaimers are written to insure the seller against the certain percentage of inevitable failure. In this old world, failure is inevitable. Some fail more than others but sooner or later, everybody fails at something and, in the end, Death is waiting. Death is 100% certain. Betting on the wiggle-room between the cradle and the grave is how fortunes are lost, and made. Big risks reap big returns. Small risks are...small.
There is so much risk-aversion and deadly uncertainty in today's world, the family of man is beginning to look like a collection of hypersensitive schizophrenics who have wandered off the reservation and are badly in need of medication. That's how the news of the day (24/7) portrays humanity at large. Newsorgs are profit-making concerns and operate on the general principle of "If it bleeds, it leads." Nothing like a bit of bloodshed and the old ultraviolence to up the ratings (and the blood pressure) of the viewing audience. The Islamic zealots who organize and indoctrinate the explosive suicide/murder brigades are highly motivated by the hope of seeing their latest explosion broadcast 'round the world, 'round the clock, by the oh-so-accommodating global media. Their partnership is an astonishing dance of the macabre. They both know they need each other to keep on dancing but the burden is on the newsorgs because they can't appear to be a partner in the dance-macabre. The newsorgs must appear to be "objectively reporting the latest atrocity" with appropriate (even sincere?) concern for the terrible loss of life visited upon the victims and their families and the horrible sense of injustice and deprivation that surely must compel the need to resort to such bloody violence. Oh how saddened we all are by the busload of children just blown to smithereens in downtown Jerusalem. Stay tuned for details at the top of the hour after these messages from our sponsors. Boo-hoo.
Another amazing thing Jesus of Nazareth said:
"I will send you my Spirit. My Spirit will lead you into all truth and show you things to come."
By any standard of human interpretation, that statement is a statement of an intended and determined purpose with results following: "I will send you my Spirit. My Spirit will lead you into all truth and show you things to come."
So here we are in a world of "religion" that is being turned upside down by the conflicts of one religion with another. One religion (Islam) is organized around prophecies received from the angel Gabriel by an illiterate desert-dweller named Mohammed. The other religion (Christianity) is organized around the existence of a remarkably well-versed and extremely literate Personality known world-wide as "Jesus of Nazareth."
Islam has been codified (by its literate adherants) in a book called the Koran. Christianity has been codified in a book called the Holy Bible. Islam, according to the Koran, demands obedience and self-control from its devotees. Christianity, according to the Holy Bible, demands nothing more or less from it's followers than becoming a "follower of Christ."
Both Islam and Christianity are global in their reach. Billions of people (living Souls in bodies of flesh?) adhere to the teachings of each religion. Islamic devotees believe anyone who does not follow the teachings of Mohammed and the Koran is an infidel. Jesus of Nazareth says, "I am the way. I am the truth. I am the life. No one comes to the Father [God] except through me." Devotees of Islam believe that the claims of Jesus are an invention of the Jews, designed to keep Arab Islamics (the descendants of Ishmael) from their rightful place in the inheritance of their common progenitor, Abraham. The roots of the conflict between the descendants of Ishmael and the descendants of Isaac run deep and are soaked in fifty centuries of human blood.
Jesus of Nazareth says, "You think I have come to bring peace. I tell you I have come to bring a sword. And, because of me, a man's enemies will be those of his own household." The household of Abraham is an ancient one and the descendants of Abraham are now, as predicted, "numerous as the stars of the sky and the sand of the sea." And the bitterest, most implacable enemies of those who claim Jesus of Nazareth as their LORD and Savior are their long-lost half-brothers, sired by the man from whom they are both descended: Abraham, nee Abram of Ur. Peculiar, ain't it? How at this point in the flow of God's Prophecy to mankind, the biggest military conflict on the planet happens to be taking place on the same ground where young-man Abram was walking around before God called him out.
"Nobody's right if everybody's wrong..."
The genius of pop-music is in it's ability to condense a great deal of important information into a very succinct, appealing format. When David Crosby crooned the lyrics to "For What It's Worth" everybody knew they were hearing a fair summary of the political situation of that day. In many ways, those same lyrics could be applied to the poisonous religious atmosphere of today. But they won't be because, pop-music is a throw-away commodity and most of the people who make the best pop-music despise all forms of "religion." There are no new solutions so far forthcoming from the "philosophers of pop music." There was a time not too long ago when people actually "got a message" from the music. But that was when there was only one "top ten" in Billboard and all the radio stations played from the same list. Pop-music is now a fractionalized, factionalized frenzy of ambition, greed, vanity, violence, misogyny, and murder.
Before the forces of Evil overwhelmed the pop-music idiom, there were plenty of young people who got the same sense of peace and fulfillment from a rock concert as some people get from the practice of "going to church." There for awhile, pop-music provided a "religious experience" for kids who had already seen the hypocrisy of organized "religion." "The Music" was larger-than-life and gave its devoted fans something greater than themselves to believe. Long live Cherry Vanilla! In Western Europe today, Sundays are for recovering from Friday and Saturday night. And the church-houses and cathedrals that haven't been converted into thumping techo-dance clubs are populated only by a few old snowbirds who haven't forgotten their upbringing. "Religion" is out and secular humanism is what's "in".
In the U.S.A, big-time, world-wide, "christianity" is mostly a hard-sell, high-pressure, marketing scheme designed to give the "believer" a peak-experience in "worship" while (at the same time) separating the "believer" from a certain amount of money. It takes lots of money to spread the "good news" of Jesus.
Jesus Himself says, "When you pray, pray in secret and your Father in heaven will reward you openly." Jesus Himself says, "Men ought always to pray and not to faint." Jesus Himself says, "My Father in heaven seeks those who worship, not in a mountain or in a temple, but in Spirit and in truth." Jesus of Nazareth changed the Order of Worship on planet Earth from a visible Order to an invisible Order. The thundering, overwhelming "supernaturalness" of what Jesus of Nazareth said and did is reverberating in this very instant (so long as "time" is called "to-day"). The invisible Orders of "worship in Spirit and in truth" are now in force. How each living Soul on Earth identifies with and practices worship within the field of these new Orders is a matter of utmost secrecy and complete privacy. God Alone (by His Spirit) sees and knows the Mind and Heart of every living Soul. The outward appearance of ordinary humanistic "worship" has been and is now overwhelmed and made void by the New Orders of Worship that Jesus of Nazareth ushered into this death-cursed cosmos of flesh and blood.
If there is any sort of actual, factual, "religion" in this world today, it's the secret "worship in Spirit and in truth" that Jesus unveiled at Jacob's Well in His conversation with the Samaritan woman. The fellowship, and the testimony, and the "good works" done by people who claim allegiance to the Christ-man are admirable but should not be confused with what Jesus Himself defines as "worship." According to the New Order of Worship, worship of Father God is now supposed to be carried out in secret, in Spirit, and in truth.
Jesus said that when Judgment Day comes and He begins to separate His Sheep from His Goats, many of the goats will protest and say, "Lord, we did great works in your Name. Why are you casting us into outer darkness." Jesus' answer is more than a little disconcerting: "Depart from me. I never knew you."
How's that possible? Isn't God supposed to know everything? This writer takes the Liberty of hoping, sincerely, that the people who translated the ancient writing into "Depart from me I never knew you" made a mistake in their choice of words. If there is ANYTHING, small or great, that God does not know fully and completely, then how can God be "god." If God is not absolutely perfect in all aspects of His "godness" then He's not God, right? This writer comforts himself with the hope that the translators of the ancient manuscripts were as prone to mistakes as any other Soul-in-flesh.
From Day One up to this instant, God has used the painful concept of "learning by mistakes" as the primary teaching tool for the instruction of those who earnestly and sincerely seek to worship Him and abide with Him "in Spirit and in truth." From the way things are going now, it would appear that people will continue to make huge "mistakes" in their efforts to develop a man-made world of "peace and plenty."
The all-too-frequent human tendency of ignorance is now, to-day, in full bloom all over the Earth. The Christian nations and the Islamic nations are at each other's throats. The bloody Islamics have deluded themselves (with no little contribution from Satan) into thinking that they really are "doing God a service" when they blow up Jews, Christians, or anyone else who does not adhere to the oppressive religion of Islam. Interestingly, the Jews and the Islams both deny the divinity and the Deity of Christ-man Jesus. The Christian nations support the Jews in their new, reconstituted State of Israel. But the worldwide newsorgs don't present any factual spiritual information about the "real" reasons behind the West's support of Israel. The newsorg storyline on the West's support of Israel is always couched in "political" not "spiritual" terms. The West supports Israel because it is "the only Democratic State in the region." Not because it is where God Himself came down, and walked among ordinary men as the Most Extraordinary Man ever to walk the Earth: Jesus of Nazareth, the Eternal Christ and only begotten Son of God.
What's "religious" about that? Not much. Sure, it's overwhelming; it's certainly Most Holy in its aspect. It's Awful and it's Awesome and it's Most Profound when the Heart and Mind of any living Soul gets anywhere near-able to even slightly IMAGINE that God, Almighty and Eternal, really and truly did walk the dusty streets of old Jerusalem and, in the process, changed the Order of Worship that living Souls in bodies of flesh on planet Earth should follow if, (the big IF) a Soul wants to survive the period of Total Destruction and Annihilation that God by His Spirit has foretold in the so-called "new testament" of the Scriptures nominally referred to as "The Holy Bible."
The deluded Islams are busy right now, inventing the next new atrocity of death for the appeasement of their no-god "allah." The testosterone drenched young men who so willingly don the exploding vest of dynamite believe the reconstituted smithereens of their imploded flesh bodies will land in a place called Paradise and there, 72 dusky-eyed virgins will visit the infinite liquid pleasures of heavenly female pulchritude upon them. Not a bad dream in itself but made corrupt by the fact that it is inspired and driven by the delusional compulsions of "religious fantasy."
This writer has no "special revelation" from the God of Abraham, Isaac, or Jacob. Not too long ago, this writer had a close encounter with a so-called "preacher of the gospel" who simply presented the information contained in the so-called "Holy Scriptures" not as a compendium of "religious" information but as a matter of historical fact. The irreligiousness of the preacher's presentation, led to an infinitely greater appreciation for the Perfect Irreligiousness of God's Christ, Jesus of Nazareth. Not much of what any man says about Jesus can top what Jesus says about Himself. Crossing the chasm between the humanistic religion of men over to the irreligious Liberty and Freedom "wherewith the Christ has set us free" is, after all, the fabled "leap of faith."
If this writer happens to encounter 72 dusky-eyed virgins as the arc of this
long leap lengthens, I won't be thanking "allah" for the pleasure they
might bring my way. I'll thank God in the name of Jesus for enough good
sense not to turn them away because enjoying their company would be
"against my religion."
John L. Jordan
Alabama, 35592, U.S.A.
This page was created July 10th 2005
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