By Andy Lund
The Apostle Paul has been requested to see a psychiatrist.
Psych: (Heavy German accent) Do take a seat on the couch Herr...Mr...er Mr...
Paul: Just call me Paul.
Psych: Ah, yes quite....Paul.
Paul: I don't like standing on ceremony.
Psych: Well sit on it then...ha ha ze little joke. Now as you know you have been sent to me to see if zer is something..some little thing I can do for you. Not that you need worry , of course. It's just that ...well some of the things you have been saying have caused ...a little.... worry, really.
Paul: Like what?
Psych: Ah.. ze direct approach. No beating about the tree with you, eh?
Psych: Bless you!
Paul: No beating about the bush.
Psych: Ah, quite so, ze bush..ja, ja. Back to ze matter in hand. You are recorded as having written "If only for this life we have hope, we are to be pitied more than all men." and " The resurrection of the dead comes through a man"
Paul: Correct and that man is Jesus Christ.
Psych: Ah... I was coming on to that. This Jesus Christ appears to be some powerful kind of guy, then?
Paul: He will destroy all dominion authority and power and will reign until he puts all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy to be destroyed is death.
Psych: So...er... let me get you right here. You're saying that this Jesus Christ is actually more powerful than ...err...let us say...death.
Psych: But..correct me again, if I'm wrong...
Paul: I shall.
Psych: Is it not the case that he was crucified by the Romans and buried in a tomb just outside Jerusalem, which can be visited at any time.
Paul: It can, but you won't find anyone there.
Psych: Ah... why not?
Paul: Because three days after he was killed he rose from the dead.
Psych: Ah...what about witnesses...you have to have witnesses to be sure of such a miraculous event. Perhaps this is why people are saying you are mad...I'm sorry - rationally challenged. Perhaps you made it all up.
Paul: Well, he appeared to Peter, the apostle..
Psych: Ah, ze Peter ja, but...
Paul: Then to the 12 apostles..
Psych: Ah, ze inner circle of friends..
Paul: Then he appeared to 500 at the same time..
Paul: Then to James and to all the apostles..
Psych: Quite so, quite so...
Paul: and then he appeared to me on the road to Damascus, where I was going to....
Psych: But you are prejudiced, you were one of these Christians.
Paul: If you let me finish, I was going to Damascus in order to get rid of these Christians off the face of the earth. I detested them.
Psych: And now you are one?
Paul: Precisely. Because I met the risen Jesus Christ.
Psych: Very interesting. ..very interesting.
Paul: That event changed the whole of my life. I, the man who used to persecute the Christians, have become one of their leaders.
Psych: I don't wish to ..how do you say...cast nasturtiums.
Psych: Bless you....But maybe you are not telling us quite all the truth. Maybe it is in your best interests to keep in with the Christians.
Paul: I have worked myself to the bone, been in prison many times, been exposed to death on many occasions. I have been flogged with 39 lashes on 5 occasions, beaten with rods three times, I've been stoned ..
Psych: Ah, ze alcohol problem...
Paul: With real stones.
Psych: Quite so...
Paul: I have been shipwrecked and spent a day and night on the open sea. I've often gone without food water and sleep. I have been cold and naked. I've been taken to court....
Psych: I get your point. But why? Why do all this?
Paul: Because I can't lose.
Psych: By which you mean?
Paul: Whether I live or die, I can't lose. For me to live is Christ and being with him. And if I die, it's a bonus. I will go to be with him. I shall still be alive just like he is. You see, it's not just a belief for me. I know that Jesus Christ has risen from the dead. And my whole life is committed to proclaiming that truth. If he hasn't, it's all been so much rubbish. But I know he has.
Psych: Er quite.. I think I just might need some more sessions with you.
© Andy Lund
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