Saturday, May 14, 2005

'Whitewashing Jesus'

Here's a quote from Dave that is worth repeating:

'Whitewashing Jesus is when we twist the evidence to make him squeaky-clean. It's irresponsible to make a dogma such as the sinlessness of Jesus the primary interpretive lens through which we approach the gospels, at least if we're going to claim we're getting at the original meaning in its historical context. It's dishonest and unfair to approach the text with unquestioned assumptions and then claim to be finding the original meaning; and that holds whether your assumption is Jesus the Grace Teacher, Jesus the Fundamentalist, Jesus the Radical Liberal, Jesus the Second Person of the Trinity, of One Substance with the Father, Jesus the Neo-Conservative, Jesus the Egalitarian Defender of Human Rights or Jesus the Proto-Hippy. Sure, we might find elements of all those things, but when we approach the text with our minds already settled, we invariably twist things to fit our preconceptions.'