QUESTION: Christians, If god didn’t sacrifice himself to himself to bypass a rule he made, then what did he do exactly?

ANSWER:

Jesus resolved a “structural” problem that occurred as a result of Adam being swindled out of his God given earthly dominion by Satan, the devil.

As a result of Adam’s fall from grace, Satan managed to enslave Adam and all of his offspring under an evil dominion, based on the power of death.

God permitted such a thing because Adam was properly and completely educated (warned in advance) by God and should have known better. Once Adam lost everything to Satan, there was no (natural) way of reversing (restoring) things. Hence, God stepped up to right the wrong.

True God and true man, Jesus is the sinless, fully authorized and fully qualified “kinsman redeemer” – the only one who has the supernatural power, as well as the “natural right” to step in and redeem mankind from perpetual slavery to Satan, sin and death. But it would not be easy and it would not be accomplished the way most would expect.

Because Jesus is God – and because Jesus is also a sinless man, Satan had absolutely no power (the power of death or otherwise) over Jesus – so Satan and his minions (the corrupt Jews and the pagan Romans of the time) had absolutely no authority to put Jesus to death.

They went ahead and crucified him anyway, even though they should have known better. They had been warned, all the way back in Genesis 3:15.

Jesus permitted it to happen, since when Jesus died on the cross, Satan’s evil dominion over mankind and the earth was forfeit and mankind now had a (perfect and sinless) new leader – the resurrected Jesus Christ, the Messiah, King of Kings and Lord of Lords – the one who Satan had absolutely no power over.

Now, all power on earth and in heaven (as well as everywhere else) was awarded to the New Adam – the resurrected Jesus Christ – fully God and fully man – who had effectively “crushed the head of the serpent” – freeing mankind from the power of perpetual death and hell – just as he promised, so long ago – and who, by his glorious resurrection, proved all that I claim here and more.

God the Father was pleased, freely bestowing grace, peace, divine adoption, protection from eternal death and much, much more, on all who choose to swear faithful allegiance to his divine son, Jesus – something that is typically accomplished through water baptism, in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit, as well as through faithful membership and regular, consistent participation in the work, worship, sacraments and devotions of the only Church that Jesus Christ ever personally founded, authorized, empowered and perpetually guaranteed, for the purpose of our salvation – the Holy Catholic Church.

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What … Who … Huh?

This is the key point, the Pope stressed: “Jesus is risen.”

But, the Holy Father continued, it is not always easy to understand . The Pope then recalled that when St. Paul spoke to the Greeks in Athens he was listened to with interest up to when he spoke of the resurrection. “This makes us afraid , it best to leave it as is.” Pope Francis said.

The Pope noted that “there are also the Christians who are embarrassed. They are embarrassed to “confess that Christ is risen.

…said Pope Francis there is the group of Christians who ” in their hearts do not believe in the Risen Lord and want to make theirs a more majestic resurrection than that of the real one . These, he said are the “triumphalist” Christians.

“They do not know the meaning of the word ‘ triumph ‘ the Pope continued, so they just say “triumphalism”, because they have such an inferiority complex and want to do this …

When we look at these Christians , with their many triumphalist attitudes , in their lives, in their speeches and in their pastoral theology, liturgy , so many things , it is because they do not believe deep down in the Risen One . He is the Winner, the Risen One. He won..”

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Editor’s note: The Holy Father should be much more specific when he aims to “dis” entire groups of Christians. For starters, he might tell us precisely what and/or who he is talking about.

The term “Triumphalism” doesn’t even appear in the 1917 Catholic Encyclopedia, so it can’t possibly be a reference to Pope Francis’ old fashioned, favorite target – the dreaded Pelagians!

What should we take away from this? Best guess: Always giving Christ the glory and the credit, because it the power of his grace … not anything we might do all by ourselves … which makes real victory possible.

It would have been nice if the Holy Father fully explained himself – but that would have required at least some preparation and an essential working knowledge of Catholic theology.

According to a new study, the more intelligent a person is, the more likely he/she would be turn away from religion.

ressurection

Study: “Most extant explanations (of a negative relation) share one central theme —the premise that religious beliefs are irrational, not anchored in science, not testable and, therefore, unappealing to intelligent people…”

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Editor’s note: All of which goes to prove the eminent practicality of Catholicism, which is based on Jesus Christ – an actual historical person – plus faith and reason – including the entirely logical premise that anyone who claims to be God and subsequently raises himself from the dead in order to prove it – most likely IS precisely who he claims to be!

Recovering the theological significance of Sunday is fundamental to rebalancing our lives.

For Christians, Sunday, the Lord’s Day, is a special day consecrated to the service and worship of God.  It is a unique Christian festival.  It is “the day the Lord has made” (Ps. 117 (118):24). Its nature is holy and joyful. Sunday is the day on which we believe God acted decisively to liberate the world from the tyranny of sin, death, and corruption through the Holy Resurrection of Jesus.

The primacy of Sunday is affirmed by the liturgical practice of the early church. St. Justin the Martyr writing around 150 AD notes that “it is on Sunday that we assemble because Sunday is the first day, the day on which God transformed darkness and matter and created the world and the day that Jesus Christ rose from the dead (First Apology, 67).” Sunday has always had a privileged position in the life of the church as a day of worship and celebration. On Sunday the Church assembles to realize her eschatological fullness in the Eucharist by which the Kingdom and the endless Day of the Lord are revealed in time.  It is the perpetual first day of the new creation, a day of rejoicing.  It is a day for community, feasting and family gatherings.

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The seven traditional qualities of a resurrected body

Here we will allow our source to be the Summa of St. Thomas. You can click on each quality (in blue) to read more a the NewAdvent Summa online.

1. Identity – What this means essentially is that the very same body that falls in death will rise to be glorified. We cannot claim that we will get a different body, but rather, that our current body will rise and be glorified. St. Thomas says, For we cannot call it resurrection unless the soul return to the same body, since resurrection is a second rising, and the same thing rises that falls: wherefore resurrection regards the body which after death falls rather than the soul which after death lives. And consequently if it be not the same body which the soul resumes, it will not be a resurrection, but rather the assuming of a new body (Supl, Q 79.1).

This does not mean that the body will necessarily be identical in every way. As St. Paul says above, are current bodies are like the seed. And just as a seed does not have all the qualities of the mature plant, but does have all these qualities in seed form. So too our body is linked to our resurrected body causally and essentially though not all the qualities of the resurrected body are currently operative. Again, the Summa states: A comparison does not apply to every particular, but to some. For in the sowing of grain, the grain sown and the grain that is born thereof are neither identical, nor of the same condition, since it was first sown without a husk, yet is born with one: and the body will rise againidentically the same, but of a different condition, since it was mortal and will risein immortality. (Ibid).

Scripture attests that the same body that dies will also rise. Job said, And after my flesh has been destroyed, yet in my flesh I will see God; I myself will see him with my own eyes—I, and not another (Job 19:26-27). And to the Apostles, shocked at his resurrection Jesus said, Look at my hands and my feet. It is I myself! Touch me and see; a ghost does not have flesh and bones, as you see I have (Luke 24:39).

Hence the same body rises and so there is continuity. But there is also development and a shining forth of a new glory and capabilities that our bodies do not currently enjoy.

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The late historian Dr. Warren Carroll explains what happened in Jerusalem the day Jesus rose again from the dead

The word “perfidious” in the old Good Friday liturgy referred to the rejection of God’s Son the Messiah by the Jews who called for his crucifixion. He had given them proofs of who He was, but they closed their eyes and ears to them.

Though it may be counter-productive to make this point in today’s age, this willful blindness to the truth is spectacularly evidenced by the Sanhedrin when they received the report of Jesus’ Resurrection from the Roman guards at His tomb.

There were 16 guards on duty, only 600 yards from Pilate’s government house and residence; they were certainly not all asleep, for sleeping on watch by a Roman soldier was punishable by death.

If the Sanhedrin believed their report, they knew a miracle had happened.

If they disbelieved it, why did they not denounce them to Pilate and have the apostles arrested for stealing Jesus’ body, either with the complicity of the guards or because of their negligence?

But the Sanhedrin did neither, instead bribing the guards to say that Jesus’ disciples had stolen His body while they slept, and promising to protect them from Pilate. They must have known or at least guessed the truth, and yet refused to believe.

In any case, the expression “perfidious” cannot logically apply to Jews apart from the circumstances of the crucifixion…

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Doubting Thomas