Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Why didn't Jesus stick around?

Soon after Jesus resurrected he disappeared into the sky, never to be seen again for about 2000 years so far. Why?

It seems to me so many problems would be solved if he had stuck around. The whole world would have had a chance to see that it really was Jesus resurrected, instead of just the reported five hundred. He could have reestablished the Kingdom or Israel with himself as King. No one would have been forced to "believe" or "have faith" in the testimony of questionable witnesses in order to be saved. And we would have all lived happily ever after.

But no. He does his disappearing act and for 2000 years we have had confusion and strife over who he was and what he did and what he will do.

"Aha," you will say, "he went away for two reasons. One, to build a place for us. And two, so that the Holy Spirit could come."

But I ask, "Just how long does it take someone to create a place for us to live who was able to make the entire universe in seven days just by speaking?" And two, "Why couldn't the Holy Spirit come while Jesus was still around? Why did he have to exit first?"

And how good of a job has the Holy Spirit done? Would there not be more believers if Jesus had stayed and lived and reigned forever? Would there not be more unity of doctrine and practice with Jesus as the head of the church? An invisible Holy Spirit seems like a poor substitute for the real thing!

And, from a skeptical point of view, it's too convenient for the believer to have an absent Jesus, the miraculous evidence no longer there to inspect. Some will say that the absence of a body in the tomb is evidence for the resurrection. I say that the absence of a body after the resurrection is evidence of something sketchy.

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