Retrofitting Jesus

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sock puppet
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Retrofitting Jesus

Post by sock puppet »

I can't speak for how countries other than the U.S.A. regard and treat Biblical Jesus, but in the U.S., co-opting Jesus and then molding Jesus to be in line with if not a teacher of one's own convictions has become a virtual parlor game. This has become in recent decades the game played primarily by those on the ideological right. At the January 6, 2021 riot/insurrection, one woman carried a poster of Nordic Jesus wearing a MAGA hat. I've seen memes with Rambo's body--bulging muscles, bare chested but for ammo belts hanging across the abdomen from the shoulders--and Jesus' head interposed where Sylvester Stallone's was in the original. There are paintings of Jesus standing behind and protecting The Donald (the appellation Trump preferred in the 1980s and 1990s) while he looks to be working at the desk in the Oval Office. As I see this, and the projection onto the Jesus canvas that takes place, it only reinforces the notion that God is only a figment of our projections (not just of our imaginations).
Gadianton's realized on his mission: the "core of the gospel of the actual church is high-pressure sales, it literally is Amway...And you really got the feeling that if you didn't enjoy high-pressure sales or weren't enamored by hierarchies, that there was no place in the Church for you."
drumdude
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by drumdude »

Indeed. It’s difficult for me to imagine the Gospel Jesus in the board room with the quorum of the 12 discussing hush money payments made to sex abuse victims, but Free Market Republican Jesus is so malleable that Mormons can do it without even trying.
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by Dr. Shades »

In my opinion, you're simply becoming more aware of a phenomenon that's been occurring ever since a few decades after Jesus died. On a meta level, it's not even unique to Christianity.

God didn't make man in God's image; man made God in man's image.
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Jersey Girl
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by Jersey Girl »

sock puppet wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2024 8:08 pm
I can't speak for how countries other than the U.S.A. regard and treat Biblical Jesus, but in the U.S., co-opting Jesus and then molding Jesus to be in line with if not a teacher of one's own convictions has become a virtual parlor game. This has become in recent decades the game played primarily by those on the ideological right. At the January 6, 2021 riot/insurrection, one woman carried a poster of Nordic Jesus wearing a MAGA hat. I've seen memes with Rambo's body--bulging muscles, bare chested but for ammo belts hanging across the abdomen from the shoulders--and Jesus' head interposed where Sylvester Stallone's was in the original. There are paintings of Jesus standing behind and protecting The Donald (the appellation Trump preferred in the 1980s and 1990s) while he looks to be working at the desk in the Oval Office.
I've probably seen all of the above.
As I see this, and the projection onto the Jesus canvas that takes place, it only reinforces the notion that God is only a figment of our projections (not just of our imaginations).
Really? I see it as man's exploitation of Jesus.
We only get stronger when we are lifting something that is heavier than what we are used to. ~ KF

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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by yellowstone123 »

Dr. Shades wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2024 7:46 am
In my opinion, you're simply becoming more aware of a phenomenon that's been occurring ever since a few decades after Jesus died. On a meta level, it's not even unique to Christianity.

God didn't make man in God's image; man made God in man's image.
Almost my exact thoughts. Recent pictures showing Jesus as a mild-mannered Viking are interesting and at times emotionally moving, but also demonstrate to me that God did not create man but man created God. I will say that I have an LDS friend that I've known for over 50 years and we write letters or emails back and forth and mail each other books. The subject of a picture of Jesus came up and he wrote something that he never put up a portrait because it seemed to take away from who you should focus on, or something like that. Based on things he felt on his Mission in Northern Europe and things that have happened to him since he focuses more on a life force not a portrait that is likely inaccurate.
“One of the important things for anybody in power is to distinguish between what you have the right to do and what is right to do." Potter Stewart, associate justice of the Supreme Court - 1958 to 1981.
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sock puppet
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by sock puppet »

Dr. Shades wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2024 7:46 am
In my opinion, you're simply becoming more aware of a phenomenon that's been occurring ever since a few decades after Jesus died. On a meta level, it's not even unique to Christianity.

God didn't make man in God's image; man made God in man's image.
Yes, more and more aware of the phenomenon. In 1982, when watching the movie E.T., I ponderized the alien. Two eyes, two arms, two legs, one head, one mouth, one nose...very human like in many, many respects. Why was the alien so constructed? To make it more 'approachable' for humans? It was then for me that I first postulated that man made the alien, in many respects, in man's image. So I began to wonder if that was what much of mankind has done with its own image, and crafting "God", as you say, in man's image.

I've observed that mankind often imbues God with its positive, uplifting traits. Reason, charity, love, etc.

What I have found interesting with MAGA Jesus and the like, is that a segment in a divided society has co-opted Jesus, armed him in faux pictures with assault rifles, and topped his head with a MAGA hat. While the MAGA opponents point to Jesus' liberal qualities, judge not, be kind to all, help feed and succor the poor, and the Beatitudes. In the political skirmish going on in America, Jesus is like a football. Each team wants the ball. Jesus is becoming the flashpoint for the divide and a tool for demonizing the other side. At least on the MAGA side of that divide, there doesn't seem to be much textual support in the Gospels for the way Jesus is being used.

While I did notice even in the 1970s to some extent that EV preachers on TV were wrapping their cultural views in the name of Christianity, it seems that images altered or drawn to depict Jesus as firmly ensconced on one side have only become vogue in the last 15 or 20 years.
Gadianton's realized on his mission: the "core of the gospel of the actual church is high-pressure sales, it literally is Amway...And you really got the feeling that if you didn't enjoy high-pressure sales or weren't enamored by hierarchies, that there was no place in the Church for you."
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sock puppet
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

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Jersey Girl wrote:
Tue Jul 09, 2024 8:13 am
sock puppet wrote:
Mon Jul 08, 2024 8:08 pm
I can't speak for how countries other than the U.S.A. regard and treat Biblical Jesus, but in the U.S., co-opting Jesus and then molding Jesus to be in line with if not a teacher of one's own convictions has become a virtual parlor game. This has become in recent decades the game played primarily by those on the ideological right. At the January 6, 2021 riot/insurrection, one woman carried a poster of Nordic Jesus wearing a MAGA hat. I've seen memes with Rambo's body--bulging muscles, bare chested but for ammo belts hanging across the abdomen from the shoulders--and Jesus' head interposed where Sylvester Stallone's was in the original. There are paintings of Jesus standing behind and protecting The Donald (the appellation Trump preferred in the 1980s and 1990s) while he looks to be working at the desk in the Oval Office.
I've probably seen all of the above.
As I see this, and the projection onto the Jesus canvas that takes place, it only reinforces the notion that God is only a figment of our projections (not just of our imaginations).
Really? I see it as man's exploitation of Jesus.
I would agree that it is exploitative. Whether the events described in the Gospels actually occurred, or it was a myth that was relatively stable for centuries, it seems that there was a fairly wide consensus of what values Jesus and even Christianity more broadly were. Sure, I've seen some "art" depicting Jesus carrying the cross and extra lines drawn to make it a swastika by the Nazis and crosses in general so mutilated into swastikas, but I've gotten the sense it was not that common as MAGA Jesus is today.
Gadianton's realized on his mission: the "core of the gospel of the actual church is high-pressure sales, it literally is Amway...And you really got the feeling that if you didn't enjoy high-pressure sales or weren't enamored by hierarchies, that there was no place in the Church for you."
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IWMP
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Re: Retrofitting Jesus

Post by IWMP »

It's blasphemy.
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