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What Christians Get Wrong About Jesus

Jesus of Nazareth challenged the religious, social and economic structures of his own day, and was put to death by Roman soldiers for being an insurrectionist. But now he is used as an avatar of power.

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Paul wrote that “God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself.” He wrote, “The fullness of God dwelt bodily in Christ Jesus.”

These statements witness to a central truth about the identity of Jesus from Nazareth, that I, by faith, embrace. When the early church developed the doctrine of the Trinity and made Jesus a part of a Godhead, I believe they took incarnation beyond what is presented in the Gospels of Matthew, Mark, and Luke.

I have never embraced creedal understandings of Jesus. I never speak of Jesus as God. Jesus was a God-filled human being who invites us all to have that same relationship with a loving heavenly father.


Rev. Howard Bess is a retired American Baptist minister, who lives in Palmer, Alaska. His email address is
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