No longer the Need for Kingdoms
So why did God start his religion way back in the Roman times? Why didn’t he come now? We have mass communication, video, and advanced science. We could easily broadcast his miracles mere seconds after he performed them. Why we could even test these miracles and prove unequivocally that they were the genuine article. Why surely… NOW would be the better time and place for a holy celestial being to demonstrate his viability. Why so long ago? Why such a backwards place and time?
Well, looking over the history of the planet and what country became which and when… Planting the seeds of truth of existence during the last years of the Roman Empire was just plain smart. In order to set and shape the future global societies, countries and beliefs the way they are currently… Bethlehem in 33 B.C.- WAS the perfect time.
Let’s see… Because Christ came when he did… he and His new Christ-ian religion could take full benefit of the enormous Roman Empire. Though they were persecuted for some 200 years (a mere blink of an eye in the view of History) Christians would eventually achieve the conversion of Caesar Constantine. This would give the fledgling religion a paved path to the rest of the known western world. The expression “all roads lead to Rome” was fortunately true. And if it leads to Rome, then it could travel back outward from Rome to everywhere. When Constantine finally proclaimed Christianity the official religion of the Empire, God’s word was swiftly transported to every place the empire could reach.
Had it not been for the access provided by the Roman Empire, it’s doubtful that Christianity would have spread as far as it did. Let’s remember, God\Jesus’s new religion started in Israel. Judea was only one of Rome’s provinces. The river trade, camel trade or any other means of “getting word out of the middle east” was very slow. Christianity could easily have become just “one of those little local religions.” It may not have gotten as far as it did were it not for the (at that time) global access that the Roman Empire provided.
No doubt the Mighty and Holy God knew this. What better way to seed the majority of the western hemisphere with this new Good News? God simply used the power and reach of His enemies to spread His word. When enough early Christians were in place, the Roman Empire split and eventually collapsed under its own weight; leaving in its wake, just the right amount of Christian believers to begin the rebuilding of Civilization.
Truly, once the Empire fell… the layout of the modern world was generally formed. Though there have been many and frequent territorial spats amongst countries since the Empire fell, the “lay of the lands” hasn’t changed very much at all. England, France, Germany, Italy, most of Europe in its entirety, are all still where they were at the fall of the Empire. Russia, the Baltic States, and the majority of the Middle East have remained generally where they are now.
By hitting the Calvary hilltop in zero B.C.; God cleverly insured that Christianity had a full and involved hand in shaping the character and direction of all Europe, and later, the entire expanse of the America’s. All throughout the Dark Ages, Middle Ages, the Renaissance and beyond, the Christian Church molded the architecture, music, philosophy, dress, social mores and political policies of the entire western half of this earth.
Christianity (God) had to be here on earth to guide everyone through the Plague, London Fire, French Revolution, the Dark Ages, and Renaissance, all the way to the discovery of the New World. During the past 2 millennia, God needed a Religion that could cause every one of the various royalties, peasants, and warriors to become morally aware of their respective decisions, actions, and futures. A religion packed so full of understandable references and examples that could be understood by anyone for a 2 thousand year expanse of Time.
From the beginning of the Dark Ages on up through the 1800’s, the “Church” was nearly as powerful as the reigning Royalty. At every turn the Royalty had to be certain that the Church was happy with their royal decrees. Their laws had to appease the Cardinals and Bishops of the Medieval Realms. My suspicion is that God encouraged this on purpose. How else could He manage to keep these fledgling countries in line with the Christian life style?
In order to accomplish all that, God looked out upon all the probable Time lines and saw that for nearly the next 1,800 years… the use of the Monarchy, Kings, Queens, thrones, servants, peasants, Masters, slaves etc. would be the most readily available concepts that could be understood by nearly all people. These earthly concepts of royalty were needed in order to explain the non-earthly truth about our existence. That is – until mankind grew a little more in the smarts department.
By filling the Bible with narrations of God sitting on a throne, Arch angels being his servants, Christ being a separate Son of Man on earth sitting at the right hand, and Masters and Slaves, streets of gold, God was assured that his message could successfully survive the next couple millennium.
The notion of Kings, and kingdoms had to last that long. God saw that around the 1900’s and forward, Democracy would replace Monarchy and Anarchy. God could see that the combination of Democracy and Capitalism would topple and conquer over half of the globe. God foresaw the United States of America.
I suppose that’s why he has blessed that nation. He knew that America’s freedom of speech would allow for the most important human resource - freedom of thought. The freedom to think as a person wishes. the freedom to explore any inward notion that comes to mind. The freedom to find the real message of God buried and carefully preserved inside the archaic constructs of the Old World writings and references.
Having the vantage point of hindsight, we (and only we) can begin to understand “WHY” God chose that particular time period so very long ago for his arrival in human form. Also, we can begin to understand the past necessity for Kings and kingdoms references in the Bible itself.
These revelations about the Bible’s old world frame of reference are a double edged sword though. On the one side – it is nice to know and understand the reasons for God’s timing and placement of Christianity historically. It’s just so easy and clear to us, here in the NOW, to grasp God’s unfailing historical wisdom.
On the other side though, it places a great responsibility on us here in the TODAY. Since we, modern Christians, no longer have need of the Kings and Kingdoms references, it befalls to all of us – the Christians of today -to get God’s message - right! (And Boy Howdy do we have the need to.) It’s up to us to begin expanding God’s truths about our existence. I’m not suggesting a complete re-write of the Holy Bible. However, I AM suggesting that it would be good to take a verse by verse, book by book re-look at the bible using the terminology and knowledge of today. Let’s compare the lessons (both commanded and living) given in the Bible and relate them to the here and now.
Isn’t it about time that we started saying our mental/emotional\Self instead of the old word Soul? Wouldn’t it be better to look through the Good Book, counting up all the stories about the ills of Adultery, and then present them as one unified lesson about sexual morality? Let’s begin reading and teaching the Bible verses based on their content instead of their historical context. Yes, the great Creator is a living intelligent emotional life force that commands marvelous and wondrous energies. No, God does not “sit on a throne wrapped in robes of gold”. The latter is the fairy tale version of the truth. It’s doubtful that the Holy Celestial Being even has legs. Hence our challenge lies before us here at the dawn of the 21st century. Do we plow forward expanding our knowledge of our true, complete Human Condition? Or do we continue maintaining a withering status quo, choking on its own antiquated dogma? Myself, I’m all in favor of the former, just because the latter is failing to “cut the Christian mustard.”