Sample clip of my debate with an
atheist on the issue of morality.
Find the whole debate at this link
Hinduism / Hare Krishna / Krishna Consciousness, part 1 of 10
While this parsed essay specifically comments on the writings of a proponent of the Hare Krishna or Krishna Consciousness Movement, it has wider reaching apologetic value in that, in general, the issues dealt with here relate to a wide variety of subjects.1 Hereinafter, "Parker/Prabhupada" refers to the author of the article upon which I will comment.
This segment will serve as the What's In A Name???
This essay will be parsed into the following segments:
Part 1: What's In A Name???
Part 2: What is Prayer???
Part 3: Teach Us How to Chant???
Part 4: Is There a Magic Word???
Part 5: Let My People Conform???
Part 6: Thou Shalt Not "Kill" or Not "Murder"???
Part 7: Is it All Our Fault???
Part 8: What Do You Mean "Suffer"???
Part 9: Christ the Temporary???
Part 10: Does the Bible Say???
The following are some of the claims that Parker/Prabhupada makes about Jesus:
"…any bona fide preacher of God consciousness must have the qualities of titiksa (tolerance) and karuna (compassion). In the character of Lord Jesus Christ we find both these qualities."
"Lord Jesus Christ agreed to be crucified to free others from their suffering."
"Jesus Christ was such a great personality-the son of God, the representative of God."
"He wanted to deliver God consciousness."
"He is our guru. He is a preacher of God consciousness, so he is our spiritual master."
"Actually, anyone who is preaching God's glories must be accepted as a guru. Jesus Christ is one such great personality. We should not think of him as an ordinary human being."
We should not be impressed by such complimentary language or because it mirrors Christian admiration and devotion to Jesus Christ. Parker/Prabhupada's worldview allows him to pay identical respects to any number of spiritual masters, teachers, gurus or swamis.
"Why do you call me 'Lord, Lord,' and not put into practice what I teach you?" (Luke 6:46).
Likewise, He may say,
"Why do you call me 'God's representative, preacher of God consciousness or great personality' and not put into practice what I teach you?"
"Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father in heaven" (Matthew 7:21). Likewise, He may say, "Not everyone who calls me, 'God's representative, preacher of God consciousness or great personality,' shall enter the kingdom of heaven…"
Lastly, Jesus specifically asked His disciples,
"'Who do men say that I am?' So they answered, 'John the Baptist, but some say Elijah and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.' He said to them, 'But who do you say that I am?' Peter answered and said to Him, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' Jesus answered and said to him, "Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven'" (See Matthew 16:13-17 & Mark 8:27-29).
To say that we believe in God or Jesus is also of no merit. To call Jesus good is not to call Him God. To believe in is not the same as to obey or have a relationship with. The apostle James wrote,
"You believe that there is one God, you do well. Even demons believe and tremble" (James 2:19).
We see that to merle say that we believe is to hold the same theological view as demons and they, at least, have the good sense to tremble before God.
The point is that we may refer to Jesus as whatever we wish. Yet, He is who and what He is, the Messiah the Son of the living God, indeed He is God Himself. We gain not a thing by paying Him respects or complements of any sort. We must stop subjectively searching for the God according to ourselves. Rather, we must objectively search for God in the way in which He has revealed Himself.
C. S. Lewis wrote:
"I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about him; 'I'm ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don't accept His claim to be God.' That is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg-or else he would be the Devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the Son of God; or else a madman or something worse. You can shut Him up for a fool, you can spit at Him and kill Him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to."2
Parker/Prabhupada further wrote,
"We should not think of him (Jesus) as an ordinary human being. The scriptures say that anyone who considers the spiritual master to be an ordinary man has a hellish mentality."
This is another case in which Parker/Prabhupada gave no citation, therefore, I have searched the scriptures and have found a couple of verses to which reference appear to have been made:
"And every spirit that does not confess that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is not of God. And this is the spirit of the Antichrist…" (1st John 4:3).
"For many deceivers have gone out into the world who do not confess Jesus Christ as coming in the flesh. This is a deceiver and an antichrist" (2nd John 7).
These verses are not speaking of generic or numerous spiritual masters but specifically of Jesus Christ only. Moreover, "hellish mentality" is a generic misinterpretation of the specificity of references to the "spirit of the Antichrist" and "a deceiver and an antichrist." Of course, to refer to Jesus as Christ is already proving that He is not merle a man, He is the Messiah. To deny that He is the Messiah, the Son of God, and God in the flesh, that is having a hellish mentality.
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