By Keith Ward
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Extra info for Christianity: A Beginner’s Guide (Oneworld Beginner’s Guides)
It is in that way that humans come to be images of God, by consciously relating to God and trying to discern the divine purpose in creation. Christians who take this view will not speak of the soul as immortal, and will not be troubled by the question of when the soul enters or leaves the body, or what it does without a body. Clearly, if it is part of a body/brain complex, it is more sensible to think about the development and decay of what we call personal capacities, like intellectual understanding and moral freedom, a sense of personal continuity, and so on.
The whole message of the play is that, when we look at others, what we see is a perverted projection of our own fears and desires. When we see another person as about to devour us, it is our own fear that causes us to see that. When we see another as a victim to be abused, it is our own insecurity and egoism that corrupts our vision. So, when we see God as a tyrannical, vindictive God, it is our own passions that we are projecting onto God. When Sartre rejects God, it is that perverted vision of God that he rejects.
When Christians relate to Jesus today, they often do so through some picture of a bearded, long-haired man, or through a picture of a bleeding body on a cross, or through the symbol of a figure opening its breast to display its heart. It is not at all certain – some would say, it is obviously false – that these pictures are anything like the historical Jesus at all. But that does not matter. Icons have their own spiritual power, and while they do relate to the historical figure of Jesus, all that we need to know is that God did indeed manifest the divine nature through that figure.