On the occasion of Reformation Day 2017:
Theses giving a secular explanation of Holy Scripture
If I did not know exactly, it must be the Christ child, I would say it is the Easter bunny.
This old Bonmot, the answer of a twelve-year-old to a picture shown in religious education and the question “what is that?” Shows the problem of ecclesiastical interpretation of the Bible: the answers are always already fixed.
Here are theses on biblical history and literature
which make the biblical narrative understandable as an inner-world event, determined by cause and effect.
The inner-world explanation:
In eight steps to Christianity
Inner-World Causes : With my theses I try to make a natural explanation of the origin of the Bible and the Jewish and Christian religion. Modern science is characterized by a practical atheism, that is, historical phenomena, including religion, are traced back to purely internal causes.
Suddenly Emperor : The emergence of new religions, new religious ideas and new moral prescriptions everywhere in the world social and political changes. In the rise of Christianity, these large-scale political changes are the transformation of the Roman Empire from a city republic, which sank in the civil war, into a thriving imperial empire under the long-standing ruler Augustus.
Herrscherkult : At the same time there was also a monarchist movement under the Jewish Prince Herod Antipas (4 v. – 39 nd c.), Which was based on the Jewish royal and Messiah tradition and regarded the government of the Emperor Augustus as a model ( imitatio Augusti ). Here there were correspondences to the imperial cult in Rome and Kleinasien, here the roots of Christianity lie.
In 1517, Martin Luther fixed his 95 theses at the entrance gate of the Schlosskirche at Wittenberg and, for the sake of the truth and the endeavor to inquire into a disputation. Luther went with the times, however, and had his theses printed and distributed. Today he would spread it on the Internet.
That is why I will tell the new story in a blog and show why it must differ from the ruling narrative.
I am looking forward to interested Christian, Jewish, Muslim and atheistic readers, to zealous discourses from all scientific directions, to mocking letters from agnostics and to critical questions from curious contemporaries.
The Bible can be so exciting if we can explore it curiously, instead of following the papal interpretation. Martin Luther 1520 (To the Christian nobility …): Not the (pope) church alone with its priests and professors, no, all Christians, even the laity are to interpret the Bible!
I do not revoke , said Martin Luther on April 18, 1520 at the Reichstag in Worms, unless I am disproved by the Holy Scriptures or by reason .
Philosophical thinking , written in the Encyclical FIDES ET RATIO (paragraph 104), Pope John Paul II, on September 14, 1998, is often the only terrain for understanding and dialogue with those who do not share our faith.
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