Headline – Austrailian Priest Claims Jesus Was Not God
For those who don’t want to click over to the article, here is their summary. The page has a link to the full article on another website.
Jesus Christ was not God, and Mary was not a virgin, according to a controversial new book written by an Australian Catholic priest.
“This whole matter regarding Jesus being God … not only does violence to my own intelligence, but must be a sticking point,” Father Peter Dresser writes in his new book, “God Is Big. Real Big.”
“For millions of people trying to make some kind of sense of the Christian religion … No human being can ever be God, and Jesus was a human being. It is as simple as that.”
Dresser claims Joseph was Jesus’s father, Mary was not a virgin â€“ and actually had six children â€“ and that the story of the resurrection should not be taken literally.
Dresser’s book has angered conservative Catholics across Australia.
“The Council of Nicaea settled the question that Christ was God in 325, so he is 1700 years out of date,” Sydney priest Anthony Robbie said. “The rest is a regurgitation of every discredited 19th-century liberal Protestant German cliche in the book.”
Wow. I mean, wow. First off, the amount of cognitive dissonance going on in this man’s thought processes must be astounding. I don’t mean that as an insult, not at all. How can one be a priest in a belief system and not hold to the most fundamental beliefs of that belief system? The realities of Jesus Christ being God in the flesh and the resurrection are the most foundational tenants in the Christian faith, Catholic or Protestant. And to be a priest in that system and trying to juxtapose those tow things, it makes no sense.
Without writing a whole theological treatise, here are just a few things to consider.
- Jesus claimed to be God. The Pharisees believed He claimed to be God, that’s why they wanted Him killed.
- When Peter said to Jesus, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” Jesus affirmed that statement.
- Father Dresser needs to read 1 Corinthians 15. Paul addressed the issue of the resurrection way back. If Jesus wasn’t God then His death was meaningless. If He didn’t rise from the dead then we are still lost in our sins. Did the Apostle Paul take the resurrection too literally, having been a witness of the resurrected Jesus?
Father Dresser is also somewhat hypocritical in his conclusion that Jesus wasn’t God and just a human being. Look at the title of his book; “God Is Big. Real Big.” If God couldn’t manifest Himself in human form then that kinda limits his real big God.
The only partial truth in this article is the statement that Mary wasn’t a perpetual virgin. While she was a virgin when Jesus was born she did not remain a virgin. The New Testament is pretty clear that Jesus had brothers and sisters from Mary and Joseph. That particular Catholic doctrine is clearly contrary to scripture.
The nature of Jesus, the nature of God is the heart, the core of the difference between Biblical Christianity and everything else in the world. If Jesus isn’t God, if God is just an entity or a force, if the Bible is just a moral guide with stories to help us out, then all of this is really meaningless. If there is no absolute truth then nothing really matters. There is no real right an wrong. We are just chemical machines reacting to stimulus and environmental variables like an insect or a bacteria.
But if there is absolute truth, if there is a Creator, then He makes the rules. If we violate those rules we are responsible for the consequences, the resulting “evil”, not Him. Yet, what does God do? He takes the consequences on Himself so that we don’t have to. He sends His Son who is both human and God, to pay the penalty of death for us. 2 Corinthians 5:21 “God made Jesus who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Jesus.” Sweet! How do we get in on this? 1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” We have to recognize that we are sinners (c’mon, you know you are), repent of our sin (c’mon, you know you want to), ask forgiveness (c’mon, you know you need to), and love on God with our lives not because we have to, but because we want to (c’mon already!).