The Cut and Paste Gospels

James Parker, writes in the Atlantic on the Jefferson Bible, in which Thomas Jefferson carefully excised through razor blade, any references to Jesus’ supernatural deeds.

Surely we need the Jefferson Bible more than ever: an exemplary demonstration of rationalism and intellectual autonomy. Calmly the sage bends over the text; calmly he carves away what doesn’t make sense. But a text like this produces its own anti-text, made of everything that’s been left out: a Jefferson Bible in negative, with a just-the-miracles Jesus hurtling wordlessly from one holy disruption to the next. Censorship by matter-of-factness is censorship all the same: The repressed, the removed, doesn’t go away. Personally, not being Thomas Jefferson, I need Jesus and his miracles and his divine nature—I need the celestial reverb that they give to his words. Mystery, wonder, confusion—they’re the essence. Like the yeast that leavens the bread, like the treasure buried in the field. Take a razor to that, and you’re in trouble.

(emphasis mine)

C.S. Lewis, who argues in Mere Christianity that Jesus was either divine, as he claimed to be, or a madman, precisely because he said he was the Son of God, leaves us without the choice of thinking he was merely a magnificent itinerant philosopher/teacher.

Robert Rackley @frostedechoes

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