the death of God

the death of god cartoon by nakedpastor david hayward


God emptied himself. Theologically it is called “kenosis“. God abandoned himself and died to himself on the cross. Christmas says that God desolated the God of Beyond and became Emmanuel, God with us. Easter seals the deal and slammed the door shut to the transcendent God of Beyond. The cries of Jesus asking why God had abandoned him show that God had, indeed, fully emptied himself of himself and died alienated forever from the separate God of the Heavens. Jesus wasn’t a representative of God, but God himself. Our feelings of alienation from God is where our greatest solidarity with God actually is!

The resurrection isn’t the trick up his sleeve either. It wasn’t him holding the ace that he would be back in a couple of days while he went through a mock death. He died! The resurrection is his return as the Holy Spirit in the universal collective of humanity. Even Jesus said that where there is love between the two of us there he is in our midst. It is no longer the God “up there”, but between us!

The story of the two disciples on the road to Emmaus is the metaphor, the spiritual structure, illustrating the human condition now (Luke 24).

Later today I will write a post continuing this theme and try to articulate how, from a unitive-mystical perspective, this spiritual structure is a description of an infinite reality that is fully and finitely present now.

I’ve been writing about this, calling it the z-theory, since May of 2009.

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About David Hayward

David Hayward runs the blog nakedpastor as a graffiti artist on the walls of religion where he critiques religion… specifically Christianity and the church. He also runs the online community The Lasting Supper where people can help themselves discover, explore and live in spiritual freedom.

  • Liberty

    Why then, did Jesus say to Mary at the tomb not to touch him as he had not yet ascended ‘my Father and your Father, my God and your God’? John 20:17

  • Sabio Lantz

    I guess you are steeped and brewed in other religious traditions, but it would be fun to see you try to use their myths and metaphors to spin the same inclusive humanistic [that is a compliment] philosophy as you are doing here. It would also free your efforts from the ropes that bind it to an exclusivist tradition which I know you have totally escaped in a masterful way.

  • Sabio Lantz

    *not steeped (sorry)

  • Kris

    I often wonder if Christianity could exist without the Resurrection? I understand the awesomeness of it but sometimes I feel that is all we focus on. It’s interesting since them most Fundamentalists Christians seem to fear death the most (i.e., taking a brain dead person off life support).

    What about Jesus’ life? I find that more interesting and want more of an emphasis on the fact that he associated with the marginalized people and that the most pious people hated him b/c he was upsetting the status quo. I guess it is because Christianity has become the status quo in many part of the world, so we don’t want to emphasize the part of Jesus that challenged that.

  • John

    Thanks for this David. I can really see your point here. I myself find it extremely difficult to believe the resurrection myth as most Christians tell it. Jesus ascending to Heaven and sitting on his rear on the right side of the Father. Oh yeah and interceding for us because God doesn’t speak human for some reason… I guess all knowing and all powerful don’t actually apply here… 😉 Kris, I totally agree with you by the way. Christians worship resurrection and the Bible and salvation, but they very often fail to emulate Jesus in the least.

  • A Different Michelle

    If I had a quarter for every time I heard Jesus being thanked in prayer for coming to die for us or talk about how Jesus came to die for us…it’s as though they negate his entire life.