There’s a meme called “When You See It”. You’re given a photo that looks pretty mundane, but once you’ve spotted a particular detail, the picture shifts from mundane to hilarious (or maybe horrifying). You can never go back to seeing the picture the way you first did. In the same way, my feeling is that once you’ve seen the gaping flaws in the Gospel of Matthew’s resurrection account, you’ll never go back to thinking it’s anything but garbage.
A significant segment of the population has gotten to the point they feel more kinship with animals than with their fellow human beings. Gorillas are their neighbors; children aren’t. But is this any surprise? In the U.S. we kill nearly a million unborn children a year. How does this happen if not by withholding empathy from them? And you can’t develop the lack of empathy needed to kill the unborn without losing empathy for the born.
Every religion contains some expression of our desire that good be rewarded and evil be punished. Eastern religions generally look to reincarnation; Western religions look forward to a resurrection and final judgment. But both paradigms are built on the recognition of a stark truth: “What goes around comes around” is usually not a given in this world. We live in a world of loose ends.
You might be willing to suffer torture or even give up your own life to keep your enemies from getting what they want. But if your child’s safety or life is on the line, you’ll just fold like a house of cards, won’t you? You’ll do anything to keep him or her in one piece…or will you? What if there’s a fate to be avoided that’s worse than death?