Jamie’s latest response
Here is Jamie’s response to my reply to him here.
Believing in Jesus as God does not answer these questions. Believing puts the priority of life on a relationship with Jesus (which gets into spiritual/mystical issues, I realize) and that makes all other issues secondary. For instance, I believe that a primary man existed who caused the Fall even if I can’t prove reasonably when he existed. (Perhaps that will be discovered or proven at some future point.) The reason I believe in that primary man is because that is what the Bible (Romans 5:12 & others) teaches in the plan of redemption (from a Reformed theological perspective).
One might say that this is an insular or circular argument (the Bible is true because it says it’s true and therefore I believe it). My point, though, is that because I accept that Jesus is God (not the Tooth Fairy or Santa Claus) then the things the Bible teaches about him are True, and that includes things I don’t fully understand.
L. Ron Hubbard was not God, so it wouldn’t matter much if four or five people witnessed his resurrection.
Your email outlines some reasons for thinking that Jesus either didn’t exist (not enough non-Biblical evidence) or wasn’t God (his life was myth or embellished over the last 2,000 years); that would seem to me to put him in the “liar” category. As I said, if you think him a liar (or non-existent) or lunatic then any Philosophy will do because there’s no Absolute Truth. All things are relative, including ideas of god, history, existence, etc.
Jesus is what the whole Bible is about. Jesus is the lynchpin in the plan of redemption. Jesus is the counterweight to Adam. Jesus is what separates Christians from Jews and Muslims because we see him as the fulfillment of the Law (Jews) and the only true Prophet (Muslim). Jesus is the “word made flesh”; he is the Bible. His importance to Christians (true believers, not just religious persons) can’t be understated. Without him as Absolute Truth then any person, thing, idea, or system can take the place of Truth; it can become god.
So that’s why the evil isn’t a problem. It had a beginning and it will have an end.