Jesus, the Christ, and I
May 26, 2017 § 4 Comments
Why a thread on Jesus, the Christ, and I?
This series is my testimony regarding Jesus, the Christ, and Jesus Christ, what I know from my own experience, what I choose as a matter of experimental faith, and how I choose to act in my religious life based on my experience. I separate Jesus, the Christ, and Jesus Christ because for me they are separate. I have experienced them differently and thus I think of them differently.
I have been struggling with these relationships since my freshmen year at college in 1965. My struggle has both intensified and clarified since I started writing this blog. Writing has always been an integral and dominant aspect of my spiritual life: I find myself writing about what’s going on for me spiritually and I find myself turned back toward the Light by what it reveals as I write.
More specifically, though, in this blog I find that almost every thread I follow leads me in to the Christ. Almost every Quaker problem or concern I consider seems to have our relationship with the Christ at its heart, or at least, as a radiating epicenter of pressing unanswered questions. I have come to believe that, for liberal, post-Christian Friends, at least, these relationships—with Jesus, the Christ, and Jesus Christ—deserve a level of attention, discernment, and integrity that we do not give them, and that this negligence has become a stumbling block.
Maybe I’m just projecting. I know that I need to sort these relationships out, so here I am in this blog. I feel this need because I believe that the Religious Society of Friends is a Christian movement, and I am not a Christian by any of the five definitions I’ve felt compelled to identify, save perhaps one. So what am I doing here?
As a matter of integrity, I feel I must conduct myself as a guest in the house that Christ built. I am so grateful that I have a place here, but I am clear that Christ belongs in the master bedroom, not out on the living room couch, or in some outbuilding, where so many meetings have put him.
I feel we are a Christian movement for a lot of reasons—historical, demographic, in terms of Quaker discernment—which I won’t go into here. But the most important reason is that, according to the testimony of Friends who were there, we were gathered as a people of God by Jesus Christ. I cannot in good faith, or with integrity, gainsay their testimony. For me, that changes everything. I accept their testimony as truth.
So I feel led to offer my own testimony.