Following the terrifying fire at the Notre Dame Cathedral in France, the Daily Wire team discusses its significance on a special edition of “Daily Wire Backstage,” in which god-king Jeremy Boreing shares his insights on how revelation can come through fiction. Video and partial transcript below.
One of the feelings I had during the tragedy in Paris this week, the priest who ran in and saved, as you say, the Crown of Thorns. I do not believe it is the Crown of Thorns. You say it is the Crown of Thorns that rested upon Christ’s head. I think it is a crown that Louis IX bought at a bazaar in the Middle East twelve hundred years after Christ. By the way, I’m not only going to pick on Catholics because that is not the entirety of my point. …
My point is that for hundreds and hundreds of years, millions and millions of people have made pilgrimages to the Crown of Thorns, to pray at the foot of the Crown of Thorns. Many of them have walked away from that having transcendent religious experiences. Others have probably walked away feeling like their prayer wasn’t granted and lost their faith, right? Because human religiosity is a very complex thing.
The experience of God, I am willing to grant, could very well be, in numerous cases in fact, is an authentic experience in God. Though you could not pay me enough to say that the Crown of Thorns that was in Notre Dame Cathedral ever rested on the head of Christ.
Similarly, in Israel, is a garden tomb. It’s interesting if you’ve ever been to Israel, there are Protestant locations where certain things are said to have happened and there are Catholic locations where certain things are said to have happened. Because Catholicism grew into authority at a time when most people lived mean, meager, terrible lives in medieval Europe, when people spent most of their time outdoors. People, you know like in Monty Python, they moved mud from hole to another hole. When they would walk into these cathedrals, they had never seen anything like it.
They didn’t feel the presence of God when they saw a sunset. When they saw the sunset, what they felt was the onset of cold and fear … and darkness.
But when they would make pilgrimages to the Church of the Holy Sepulchre and they would see these gilded statues and these unbelievable buildings that took centuries to build, that elevated the experience of what they were seeing.
When I see the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, I’m not a medieval mud farmer and I’m not a papist, so when I see the Church of the Holy Sepulchre, I don’t have a religious experience. When I go to the Garden Tomb, however, because I have spent my entire life indoors, in the West, air-conditioned, and well-fed, when I see, oh this is what the scene would have looked like. This is like the exact aesthetic. That transports me because evangelicalism and Protestantism came later, when we had modernity. I’m transported out of modernity to touch what once was. The result is millions of Protestants have made pilgrimages to the Garden Tomb in Israel. Millions of them have had experiences praying at the foot of the tomb, weeping at the foot of the tomb.
They will say to you that there is no question that that is where the Resurrection took place because I felt God there. And yet, the Garden Tomb is almost certainly not the tomb of Christ. Almost certainly, there is a one percent chance that the Garden Tomb in Israel held the body of Christ. Millions of Protestants would be mad at me for saying that as would be Catholics for me saying that the Crown of Thorns is not the Crown of Thorns.
The question I want each of you to weigh in on is, because it really was a startling and unsettling notion as I watched that beautiful build burn, and I thought, what is it that we thought the God of Abraham actually identifies Himself as truth. He is not only the god of truth, He is truth. That actual concept of truth is embodied in God. What does it say that His people can have authentic experiences of the God of truth through fabrication, through things that are almost certainly not true?