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Jesus of history, is the reflection of the social importance of Jesus in religious pretext, Jesus was famous in his region because he attempted to modify and improve the social and ethical setup of the society.
Christ of Faith is the same Jesus, but not the one who is handling hardships from society, and is the one who struggled to improve the religious understanding and scope of people, to bring them closer to God. Therefore, Christ of Faith, is the personal approach of an individual towards the Jesus Christ to develop religious understanding, where as, the Jesus of History is the approach towards Jesus Christ for improving social and ethical setup of the society, and furthermore, seek assistance from his worldly actions during the time of tribulations and hardships.
What can we learn about Jesus from his words and actions? What are the various models of Jesus we encountered?
Jesus Christ reflected patience and endurance during his entire lifetime. He remained firm and determined in his religious quest to apprise the people about the divine authority. Jesus reflected understanding for the people of time, and never expressed frustration and anger on his opponents. He struggled and worked hard to preach, and invested large amount of time in this regard. He was calm and composed during his entire quest, and tried to convince the people on the religious understanding and divine authority, repeatedly. His moral and spiritual character is not to be made comment over, except for it is commendable. The various model of Jesus though existed, but were centered towards strong spiritual and moral character. He was a reformer, peace activist, socialist, missionary, philanthropists, and above more he was a Prophet i.e. son of God.
Church is platform where the follower can develop and enhance himself spiritually. It is important to understand that Church is place where the spiritual and moral grievances of the follower can be handled; the purpose of the Church is to reflect love and support for the mankind, this is based on the principles of Jesus Christ. Beside, Church has supported and tried to attract the attention of the follower towards religious matters through his different sessions and prayers. Church is aware of the fact that, it is responsibility of the Church authority to support the spiritual growth of the followers, and furthermore, it is responsible for teaching and practicing different moral values based on love and peace. Church has also involved itself in certain political and social aspects with reference to society, and has therefore has distracted from its main objective of spiritualism and peace.
According to Rahner, belief may be adjusted or even thrown out, without faith necessarily having to suffer, 'Just because some Catholics no longer hold to belief in purgatory doesn't mean that their 'faith' has diminished. Or just because some Christians now address God as Mother (and not only Father), doesn't mean that their faith has been destroyed (indeed, it has probably grown)." Rahner has a liberal opinion on the religion.
According to Rahner, 'If an idol is something that takes the place of God or limits God, wasn't the Catholic church, or any religion for that matter, an idol, when in the past it said that it was the only way to find God and be saved? And what about people who blindly follow religious leaders like the pope, and accept their teachings as the only or unquestionable way of knowing for sure what God wants? Isn't that idolatrous?'
According to Merton, 'Whereas Protestant fundamentalists invest absolute authority in the literal interpretation of Scripture; fundamentalist Catholics invest absolute authority in the literal interpretation of Vatican declarations and in the figure of the pope. In the words of Catholic theologian Thomas O'Meara, 'creeping infallibility,' that is, the belief that everything said by the pope or a Vatican congregation is incapable of error, accomplishes for Catholic fundamentalists what the biblical page does for Protestant fundamentalists. Like other religious fundamentalists, Catholic fundamentalists are selective about which aspects of their religious tradition are truly 'fundamental. Catholic fundamentalists may overlook -- of course, without necessarily denying -- the big fundamentals such as the Trinity. They will instead 'select items that will 'stand out,' such as Mass in Latin, opposition to women priests, optional clerical celibacy, or support for papal dismissals of 'artificial birth control'." Merton has stressed over and suggested reforms, and has demanded the sincerity of the Catholic Church towards handling the spiritual issues of the followers, instead of jumbling into political and local issues.
According to Merton, 'truth is a multilayered and ambiguous reality. Truth is often not a matter of black and white. There seem to be degrees, levels, and kinds of truth. Many theologians today would argue that foundational stories are true if they illuminate significant dimensions of our world. In the story of Jesus, we find revealed the nearness of God and the saving power of love. The story can empower us to change the world for the better. When Christ's presence is experienced in community and in the celebration of the Eucharist, when acts of love and justice in service of God and neighbor are seen to heal divisions and reconcile people with one another, then Christians have evidence of the truth of their foundational story. The Church should therefore revised its policy and should improve'. (P.J. Kennedy. The Catholic Church Through The Ages: A History. Paulist Press. 2005. pp.154)
S.J.Gerald O'Collins, S.J.Mario Farrugia. Catholicism: The Story of Catholic Christianity. Oxford University Press. 2004. pp.29
Joseph Epiphane Darras, Charles Ignatius White. A General History of the Catholic Church: From the Commencement of the Christian Era. P.J. Kennedy. 1898. pp.214
P.J. Kennedy. The Catholic Church Through The Ages: A History. Paulist Press. 2005. pp.154[continue]
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