Just listened to an NPR interview of Tom Harpur, author of THE PAGAN CHRIST: Rediscovering the Lost Light. Now, really folks, I understand today's Good Friday for many people, so discussing Christ is date-appropriate but...sheesh. Are we so eager to embrace any other possible version of Christ that we'll listen to anything?! Are we this dead-set against the Church's testimony?
I thought I left behind ideas like, "Even though there are very real differences between the religions, underneath all that there's something all religions have in common, something that unites us all as humans" when I left high school. Yeah...that "something in common" we all have? It's called humanity, which is the problem! We need the divine Christ to unite our fallen humanity with the divine! This is miles away from Hinduism or Islam, and, ultimately, is not concerned with the union of man with God as much as it is the losing of one's physicalness in the spiritual, anti-material-ness of God.
Also in the interview was someone--I forget the name--was an SMU theology school professor whose objections were "answered" in amazing fashion by Harpur:
SMU Guy: You can't possibly prove any of this from the New Testament.I wanted to hurl. This, along with "disproving" that Christ claimed to be divine with such verses as Christ's "rebuking" the rich young ruler for calling Him "good teacher" (Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone."), or saying that Christ always "skirts the issue" of His divinity when He calls Himself "SON of God" (as if this were any different from directly saying "I AM GOD" -- which He also did (John 8:58--and why'd the Pharisees get so mad, anyway, if He wasn't making Himself God?)).
Harpur: On the contrary...(quotes from Paul's quotation of pagan poets in Acts, plus Jesus' quotation that we are "all gods.") So you see, it is compatible with the New Testament, it is that universal and ancient common faith of all pre-Christian peoples...as St. Paul says, it's "Christ in you; the hope of glory." And we see this when we allow ourselves to approach the New Testament in a way that's not bowed down with literalism and historicism.
Christ our God--co-equal and co-eternal with the Father, of a different person yet sharing the divine essence with Him and the Holy Spirit, one Godhead in three Persons and one Essence...why is this so hard?
Ah yes...because so many other faiths and ideas of men will have to answer to it. To all western Christians who may read this and are celebrating Good Friday today: may Christ our GOD bless all of you, now and ever, and unto the ages of ages.