12 Bonus Track: 'Too Good to be False' with Archangel Radio

Episode 12 September 15, 2020 00:17:33
12 Bonus Track: 'Too Good to be False' with Archangel Radio
Thinking Christian
12 Bonus Track: 'Too Good to be False' with Archangel Radio

Sep 15 2020 | 00:17:33


Show Notes

I had an enjoyable talk on the radio this morning with Archangel Radio, Catholic radio in Mobile, Alabama, talking about the 3 primary points in Too Good to be False. Check it out!
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Episode Transcript

Speaker 0 00:00:00 Some people live with the fear of and touch. They will not listen to <inaudible> Speaker 1 00:00:24 Welcome back to like Catholic morning radio with Michelle Macklin, Mike, the greats of the command center over there producing like a boss. We have this on the line, Tom Gilson, who's a senior editor in calmness with the stream. You can connect with [email protected] here to speak to us about his latest book, too. Good to be false. How Jesus is in comparable character reveals his reality. Good morning, Tom. Good morning. Since my conversion experience many, many years ago, I have never doubted the reality of Christ is who he said he is. But when I was reading your book, you know, it was fascinating. I never looked at it from a skeptic's point of view. If this was made up, they did a horrible job of making this up because they went so way over the top. This can't be fiction, right? That was my conclusion. You look at how the skeptics think that the story was made up and it was either an over the top job or in my view is an impossible job. Speaker 1 00:01:30 The character of Jesus is so incredibly unique and consistent and good. You can't make that up. Not possible. Now you broke up the book into three parts. Explain those three parts. Sure. Yeah. Part one is about, uh, Jason's character and it's, uh, he's better than we knew when I was starting in for this. I just, I was amazed at things that I hadn't realized about Jesus and the way I discovered it was by not, not so much by looking at what he did or said, but what he didn't do and didn't say, and how different he is from all the other great leaders or religious founders, and even in mythology or history or whatever, give us some examples of that. Well, the easiest one to say real quickly is that there is nobody in imagination, history, or anywhere that had great power and was really self sacrificially, other oriented in giving nobody. Speaker 1 00:02:33 And Jesus is, uh, he's powerful to the extreme and the story. I mean, he's the creator and he's self sacrificial to the extreme and the story. And there's nobody like him anywhere. Um, he never used this extraordinary power for his own benefit. Nobody liked him in that sense. That's just one example of dozens. You know what though, Tom, when you were writing about that and the simplicity of just having the power of altering a football game, and I thought, imagine if you just had Supreme power and you were walking around with that, it really would be so difficult not to corrupt ourselves with that. I think for any of us, it would be impossible. I can't imagine not using it to get myself something, um, and then start overusing it and start using it greedily and uh, and harmfully Jesus, if, if he faced, well, he did face that temptation. Speaker 1 00:03:36 Now that Satan tempted him to turn stones into bread and he didn't do it. He used his power for others. Yeah. And you kind of look at that and go, what's the big deal. If he turns the stones into bread, he's hungry. He hasn't eaten 40 days for crying out loud, give him some bread. Yeah. Right. And apparently, you know, apart from the fact that he said, you know, uh, you don't live by bread alone by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God. It's not clear why that was wrong, but it was to us, but it was clear to Jesus and he did not fall for the temptation. And I'm glad he didn't because that just shows that he did not need his power for himself. He used it for us. Speaker 2 00:04:17 You know, it's interesting that we, as human beings are attracted to people who have a fraction of that ability. So the great leaders, the great heroes that we as human beings have been able to identify special gifts that we could see absolutely completed in Jesus Christ alone. So there's something in us that is really attracted to leaders, but we cannot, a lot of times we can't connect it to this, you know, this man, this God who had the whole package Speaker 1 00:04:55 Yeah. We're attracted to them. And I think there's a sense that, which we fear them too. We worry about what they're going to do to us. Um, and, and for those who know Jesus, well, he's got enough power for us to be very scared. Um, there's something to be said for the fear of God, but he doesn't use it that way. He uses it for our good, if we will just trust him with it. Right. All right. So first part is his character. What's the second part. The second part is too good to be false. And that deals with the, uh, the skeptics. And, you know, in the first part, I talk about the character of Jesus and they say, Oh, okay, that's a character in a story. What if the story isn't true? And so I feel it's taken seriously. Let's look at this character, Jesus in the, in the gospels, in the story, his character is incredibly consistent, incredibly unique, incredibly good. Speaker 1 00:05:55 Well, the skeptics say that this character came about when the early church due to psychological needs and political and theological desires, you know, just essentially built the story over time as a legend. And it landed in four different places. Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, and, and it's all legend. And I look at that in detail. And I say that the skeptics ideas here should have corrupted the character. They should have produced something that was distorted mixed up contradictory. And they'll say, okay, there's little contradictions, like the number of angels at the tomb and the resurrection story. But I found the character of Jesus and he is incredibly consistent and unique and good. This didn't come about the way that they say it came about. I love you because you talk about a lot of the famous atheist and how, if they were just playing telephone and they were sharing the message and it was going around. Speaker 1 00:06:57 And I'm thinking at that, at that point in time, Tom lasers would have been coming out of Jesus's eyes. I mean, come on. So yeah, in fact, I've got an epilogue, I mean an appendix in there, right. Um, I have quotes from a few of the later quote gospels from the second, third century. That was comical. That was comical. I got to tell our readers that's worth getting the book just for that, because it was funny. Yeah. They got Jesus coming out of the tomb, 50 feet high and you know, it's, it comes, it's different when legend creeps in and it's noticeably different. Right. Speaker 2 00:07:35 Right. Legends mythology and human beings did that for a long time. Yeah. So I mean, until it really examined salvation history at the time that when human history in salvation history, when Jesus Christ came, there's, there is such a logic there that, you know, that the, the, the clashing together of historical phenomena, just even human historical phenomenon and how Christ arose in that situation is it does not defy human logic that this man came out of that Maloo of history. Speaker 1 00:08:14 Right. The Bible says in the fullness of time, God sent his son. There was a preparation for it in all kinds of ways, just as you're saying, I agree. All right. So then the second part is it's too good to be false. What's the third part of the book. Third part, I titled Jesus, no matter what. And here I talk about how Jesus is not just true, not just good, but you know, we're, we're in a, in a phase of history, that's unusual. It's new for the Western world. It's not new for the rest of Christianity, but it is for us in the Western world where, you know, people have always had Christians in our part of the world have always had to ask, am I going to follow Jesus? When, when my finances are in trouble or when my relationships or my health are in trouble, we're facing a time. Speaker 1 00:09:05 Now, when we're going to have to ask a question, am I ready to follow Jesus? When following Jesus itself is the cause of my struggles. People are pressuring me to give up my faith. And my point in this third section is to say, follow him. He is worth it. He's real. He's good. He's too good to be false. He's too good to let go of. That's the point of the third section in a nutshell. Yeah. Yeah. And it's extensive and I love how many notes you use and how many other authors do you bring in there? It really was a fun read because like I said, as someone who I enjoy writing just on the side, I'm not a professional writer, but I enjoy, you know, getting in there and thinking about fictional characters and even the greatest heroes. I mean, think about where, when people say that this was made up the traditions that it came from, even the Greek and the Roman gods, no one was anything like Jesus before Jesus. Speaker 1 00:10:05 And no one has been anything like Jesus since that time, this is why all of the, in the Gregorian calendar, this is the Mark right here. I mean, I don't understand how people can kind of look away from this, Tom. Yeah. And I don't know either. And the other thing that confuses me and I still haven't figured out why he said, nobody's talked about it this way in 90 years, this book is new to our generation. This whole approach is new to our generation, but you're right. Yeah. No one, there, there are a few figures since Jesus who somewhat resemble him, Superman is very powerful and very good. But guess what? Siegel and Shuster modeled him after Jesus still doesn't get there. He doesn't cause Lois lane is more kryptonite than anything else. Just saying that Speaker 2 00:10:58 You can take someone like Martin Luther King, Martin Luther King, I believe changed the trajectory of human rights. Not only in this country, but in the world, he actually bended it. He bent our trajectory for human rights. There's no question about it, but you know what? And he was self, self sacrificial as he sat in the Birmingham jail, but he had his human peccadilloes too. He was not a perfect man. He had a, he had an, a strain of self sacrifice and he was willing to do things and to lead people, but he was not perfect. And you see this in the historical figures throughout history, they have a strain, but no one has the full package. They just can't Speaker 1 00:11:48 Right. And no one has a Shakespeare Gerta dust Sophocles. No one, none of the great authors, poets, poets, playwrights, no one has come close to, to making up another character like Jesus. And in fact, one of the surprising things about Jesus and in terms of fiction or literature, is that a good story? Always has character development. Someone grows through their struggles gets better through experience. Jesus doesn't get better. There is no character growth in him. So his story ought to be really boring on that term, on those terms. But you know, 2000 years later, billions of people still interested in him, he's not boring. Yeah. There's something very different about his story and that way too. Yeah, yeah. Was neat though. You brought that up because again, I really appreciate Tom. We're speaking with Tom Gilson. His book is too good to be false. And that perspective was something that I honestly never thought of is that when you're talking about the person of Jesus Christ, I've done it myself, where I've written a little, you know, something and people will read it and go, Todd, the character is too good. Speaker 1 00:13:03 Like you, you, you gotta have a little chink in the armor. There's, there's gotta be a little crack in there, or we're not gonna be able to associate ourselves. We're not gonna be able to connect emotionally. And yet with Christ that he's perfect. He's perfect. And yet we all connect over a billion people, Tom connect with him. That's right. And, and even the other religions, everybody wants a piece of Jesus, the Hindus, the Buddhist, um, even the communist, they all want to have their version of Jesus. There's, there's something incredibly compelling about him. Even though if character growth is part of what's important in a character, no one should be interested in, in him, something very different about him. And he did not come about the way the skeptics think he did by way of, you know, communities of faith, trying to solve their problems and making him up. That's just not possible. Speaker 2 00:14:01 Right? He, he speaks totally to our human nature. He really does. He is absolutely a compass is our human nature in a way that nothing else on the world does, I've always found fascinating that he basically had 18 years of silence in his life of, you know, from bascially, from the 12th to 30, uh, from the age of about 12, I guess, to 30, he was silent. And you know, it just dawned on me that character development where he didn't, we didn't need to see that character development in that 18 years of silence. Speaker 1 00:14:41 Right. And, and I wonder too, if we would have gotten the wrong message from him, if we had followed him through his years, supposedly was working in the carpenter. And, um, you know, what's remarkable about his ministry is that what we see in him is what we're supposed to follow. His teachings, his relationships, his character, what we don't see in him is how to make a good cut in a piece of wood. Um, we might actually be under a legal listic pile of, of something that he did not intend. It has nothing to do with the Christian religion. If we were, if we were shown his character or his, the way he lived in that role. Uh, I think that was probably providential. Speaker 2 00:15:28 Huh? Yeah. Maybe we would have gotten bored, you know, in our stupidity, uh, we would've gotten bored of a lot more of us. Would've had workshops. Yeah. Maybe. So I'm a Jesus, maybe that's right. Maybe, you know, if of seeing that you know, of a Christ, um, development in that period of time. So, uh, very, very interesting. I can see how your book has really touched a nerve because it does, you know, in this age of great questioning of looking for heroes and leaders, ultimately Jesus Christ is, is that he fits the bill on every level Speaker 1 00:16:09 It does while I was writing it. There were times when I just had to stop and fall on my face and say, Jesus, you are like, God, I just worshiped him. I'm hearing from readers that they're having a new experience of worship and of awe and of love for him. And I'm not surprised because it happened to me. He is, uh, he's greater than I knew. I've been a Christian for 40 some years. And this has been a new experience for me of meeting him. And it's been gratifying to me to see that other people have had that kind of experience while reading the book too. Cause he's, he is, uh, he's the most perfect human, the only perfect human life that's ever been lived and God in the flesh and worthy of our worship. Speaker 2 00:16:57 Oh my goodness, Tom Gilson well done. My friend, we look forward to talking to you again. You're really putting out some great stuff right now. And if you get a chance, go get this book. It is fabulous. Uh, next is William Deatherage with clarifying Catholicism, LA Catholic warning. Speaker 1 00:17:14 <inaudible>.

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