I Am the Word: An Autobiography of Jesus, is the third and final in a series of three autobiographies about the life and times of God, Satan, and Jesus. The first two are entitled, I Am Who I Am: An Autobiography of God, and E-mails From the Underworld: I Am Not Who I Am Not.
We often speak of humankind experiencing the "inner presence of God" or of suffering from "inner demons." Moreover, Christians often like to describe themselves as "the hands and feet, the arms and legs of Jesus." In all three cases of God, Satan, and Jesus, it is this inner presence that gives rise to the “autobiographical” nature of the work. In the case of Jesus, humankind is the resurrected Christ. Humankind is what remains after the empty Cross. C.S. Lewis used to refer to humankind as "little Christs." This is true of those who believe and those who do not believe.
Albert Schweitzer once observed that portraits of Jesus often reveal as much, if not more, about the painter than the subject of the painting. What is true about the visual medium of painting is equally true about the word. What is said about Jesus often reveals as much, if not more, about the speaker than about the spoken.
When we speak of Jesus the man who went on to become the "Resurrected Christ," we speak, of course, within the framework of the Christian faith tradition. But it is important to recognize that nearly every major culture, every major religion – cultures and religions much older than the Ancient Hebrew world out of which the Christian story comes – are replete with theological stories of mythological truths similar to the story of Jesus. Virtually all traditional faiths center around a central story involving the son of a heavenly king who "descends" to a "lower" world, suffers, dies, and "ascends" as a "savior" once again to the "upper world." The Egyptian faith, for example, a tradition that pre-dates the Ancient Hebrew world by millennia, includes stories about a "Father God" ("Ra"), a "son" by virgin birth ("Horus"), stars in the sky announcing the birth, a life of walking on water, casting out demons, healing the sick, being transfigured on a mountain, being crucified, buried, and resurrected.
The story of Jesus is so rich, so honest, so "true" in its complexity that his story is often cited for inconsistent propositions: Jesus, the political conservative seeking to co-exist with Caesar (". . . render unto Caesar . . . .") vs. Jesus, the political revolutionary seeking to "turn everything upside down;" Jesus, the proponent of conventional wisdom vs. Jesus, the radical opponent of convention; Jesus, the proponent/opponent of Temple ritual/practice; Jesus, the proponent/opponent of priestly piety; Jesus, the proponent/opponent of standard "family values;" Jesus, the lowly son of a carpenter vs. Jesus, the Resurrected Christ; Jesus, wholly human vs. Jesus, wholly divine.
I Am the Word is the story of the birth, the life, the death, and the resurrection of Jesus as told through the medium from which it all began: the empty Cross. From polytheism, to the Creation stories of Genesis, to Noah, to the Ten Commandments, to the Sermon on the Mount, to the death of Jesus, to the un-death, and to so much more, the story of Jesus is painted before your very eyes. It is a story pre-dating the birth of Jesus the Man and post-dating the death of Jesus the Man. It is a story of Jesus before the beginning of time and after the end of time. More than anything else, it is a story of the universality of Jesus – a story of deep meaning for Christians but also a story of equally deep meaning for those of other faith traditions and for those without any faith tradition -- the on-going struggle of humankind to transcend finitude.
I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.