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Christ's Youth

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Thu Jan 26, 2012 2:50 am
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Cole says...



Hey guys,

I wanted to tell you about a novel I have written. I've been working on it for about a year. It is called The Youth. The story is written in the perspective of two different people: Halah and Caleb, both teenaged Jews. These two people live in Nazareth and become friends with Yeshua (Christ). As they become his companions, they witness miraculous events such as resurrections, healings, and exorcisms. Also, throughout the novel, Halah, (the main character) struggles with her love for Yeshua, and must come to understand that he is not merely human, but God, as well.

The story paints a fictional account of what happened during the untold teenaged years of Christ when he was living in Nazareth. One of the biggest themes in the novel is the reality of Yeshua's divinity and humanity. I was inspired to write this after reading a rather sacrilegious novel of the same premise.

But, to Christians, would you find this offensive in any way? Do you think this is a bad idea or blasphemous?

I'd love some feedback. Thanks!
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Thu Jan 26, 2012 3:53 am
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shiney1 says...



Well this is new.

I sure would like to give a novel like this a try!
As far as blasphemy goes, I do not think the plot is at all. I don't find this offensive, although I do see how very orthodox religious people might. (You have had issues with something like this in the past, if I remember correctly..?)

But I think many Christians today would be very open to read a novel like this. Just make sure that Jesus' character never strays from Scripture, and try to find a balance between being tempted to sin and committing a sin. As we both know, Jesus was human while on earth and was allowed to be tempted, but he never ever sinned.

So, I really like this idea, and I do not see any blasphemy here :)
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:35 am
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Lumi says...



With the disclaimer that anything dealing with Christ or anything in canonized scripture will always have people yelling BLASPHEMY, I think you're safe to lie back on the premise that you're not trying to write scripture. With that understanding, blasphemy shouldn't be a worry.

Granted, I'm not part of any Christian church, and I don't subscribe to doctrine, so you may have more critics on your back than one would assume.

But as far as personal comfort goes, you should be fine.
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 6:55 am
inkwell says...



Yeah, expect some zealous feedback! That's a creative gold mine though. I think if you're worried about blasphemy you can create a composite character, who is inspired by Jesus, but writing about Christ himself would make a deeper impression on people. Disclaimers go a long way.
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:23 pm
Rubric says...



As Lumi and inkwell have stated, there's going to be a block who dislike this book. Hater's gon' hate. Discounting that block, I think the thematic direction will probably be more important than the setting. To take a rather platonic view of things, what's the point of this book? Do you think the way that you pursue that representation is going to be controversial in and of itself (beyond the mere depiction of Jesus)?
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:40 pm
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Napier says...



Also remember that controversy often triggers popularity.

Think of Life of Brian, probably one of the most controversial things to come out of the eighties. It offended quite a lot of people and was accused of being blasphemous and insulting.

It's now one of the highest grossing, critically acclaimed comedies of all time.

Just bare that in mind. :)
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Thu Jan 26, 2012 8:52 pm
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inkwell says...



BadlyDrawnLightning wrote:Also remember that controversy often triggers popularity.

Think of Life of Brian, probably one of the most controversial things to come out of the eighties. It offended quite a lot of people and was accused of being blasphemous and insulting.

It's now one of the highest grossing, critically acclaimed comedies of all time.

Just bare that in mind. :)


It was arguably their best film, and not offensive at all. The problem is for both Life of Brian and Christ's Youth, that many of these offended people won't actually watch the film/read the book. That's what you have to be ready for. Obviously, to anyone who's seen it, Life of Brian is not actually about Jesus, and pokes fun at things any religious person could and should laugh at.
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Fri Jan 27, 2012 1:26 am
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Cole says...



Thanks for the advice guys. : )
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Fri Jan 27, 2012 8:45 am
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Snoink says...



Er... I probably wouldn't read it. It makes me uncomfortable to have Jesus dealt with in such a way. I mean, I've read some of the apocrypha (not the deuterocanonical books... like the apocrypha) so I could obviously handle it. But, I wouldn't want to read it because, unlike the apocrypha, it have interesting historical implications to read into.
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Fri Jan 27, 2012 11:02 pm
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Cole says...



That's a little bit of what I'm afraid of. I'm afraid Christians will be too uncomfortable to approach it, that they'll stay away from it. As you know, I am very strong in my faith, and would never alter the portrayal of Christ from Scripture. That was my main priority while writing the story.

But I definitely think you have a valid concern, Snoink.
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Thu Feb 09, 2012 10:21 pm
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hopeispeace says...



Your idea is interesting but I agree that it would be a very uncomfortable depiction to read. Here is why:
The idea of a young female falling in love with Jesus is a little bit awkward- no, actually, very awkward. Then again, if you stick to the truth of Jesus only being tempted and not actually sinning, you might be able to pull it off, with luck.
See, people have a tenancy to apply the sin of human nature into writing. That's why I would never think of trying to write about Jesus, who was without sin.
Just my opinion. Good luck, though.
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Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:37 pm
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Cole says...



I understand your concern.

Scholars and historians often believe that Mary Magdalene loved Jesus, by the way. She is considered to be Jesus' most loyal disciple and it is believed by some that she actually had a tender love for Christ.

In my novel, The Youth, Jesus does not return Halah's affection (that would be extremely awkward—not to mention offensive to me.) He tells her plainly that He cannot be a husband. She later recognizes that He is not merely a man, but God.

However, the point of the story is to recognize that Jesus was human and God. Though He was sinless and perfect, He had friends and enemies, He hurt and He loved. I do, however, make a note in the beginning of the book that everything in the novel is completely fiction and should not be equated with Scripture.

It is extremely likely that women loved or were interested in Him. He was a man, too, not just a deity. But, He denied them. He did not come to experience physical pleasures of humanity, but to know our pain, so He could deliver us from it. Again, though, I stress that He was human.

My purpose for writing this novel was as a response to that one sacrilegious book I read awhile ago. However, I also wrote it to learn more about Jesus myself, to connect with Him on another personal level. It's honestly an exercise for me in a way. The entire book's theme is really "What would Jesus do in any given situation?"
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃




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Thu Feb 09, 2012 11:40 pm
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Sureal says...



As an Atheist, I think this sounds really interested, and would definitely read it.

Obviously it wouldn't offend me, lol.
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Fri Feb 10, 2012 10:34 pm
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inkwell says...



"The most incomprehensible thing about the world is that it is comprehensible." — Einstein




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Sat Feb 11, 2012 8:40 pm
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Cole says...



Well... inkwell. The Last Temptation of Christ is really quite different from what I'm trying to do. I've tried to write a story that could possibly fit within the Gospels and corresponds with the doctrines of Christianity.

The Last Temptation of Christ deviates drastically from the original Gospels and depicts Christ performing some quite impious actions. Not to mention, the story alters many doctrines of Christianity (even if it was just an alternate reality and a means of Satan trying to tempt Him by showing Him He could have a human life).

The book/movie, shows that if Christ had not died, His life would have been meaningless, for His true role is the Redeemer of men... yet...

I was a bit offended by that book/film. Even if it was entirely fictional, it still disrupted the image of Christ's character, making it very uncomfortable to read. Christ is a deity to Christians (including me) and to tamper with His image in any way can really be upsetting or unsettling. I would consider that going a bit too far...
My heart holds all secrets; my heart tells no lies.

~Hosea 6:3~
ונדעה נרדפה לדעת את יהוה כשחר נכון מצאו ויבוא כגשם לנו כמלקוש יורה ארץ׃