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First published January 1, 1905
This being so, the only way of arriving at a conclusion of any value is to experiment, to test, by working them out, two hypotheses--that Jesus felt Himself to be the Messiah, as the sources assert, or that He did not feel himself to be so, as His conduct implies; or else to try to conjecture what kind of Messianic consciousness His must have been, if it left His conduct & his discourses unaffected. The conclusion is that we possess no psychology of the Messiah.Later, Schweitzer examines the research of two other scholars, Bahrdt & Venturini & comments that "from a historical point of view, testimony by the disciples on the life of Jesus offers no real explanations for the series of occurrences surrounding the life of Jesus, seeming to make Him subservient to a secret society, not acting with a perfect freedom but as showing a certain passivity, rather than someone who purposed to found a kingdom."
a strange longing for persecution & martyrdom had taken possession of Him. He has turned aside from His true path. The gentle, faithful, long-eyelashed mule bears Him amidst the acclamation of the multitude, through the gate of the capital.There is also a commentary on the fact that three languages met in Galilee in the time of Jesus--Hebrew, Aramaic & Greek, with the relation that each stood to each other, not completely known but perhaps the inherent cause of different & even contradictory translations of religious writings & religious instruction.
The stage is dark & becomes constantly darker, until at last, through the darkness of the scene, there is faintly visible the figure of a woman--of her who in her deep grief beside the grave was by her vision to call to life again Him whom she loved. There is darkness too in the disciples & in that of the master. Did He regret His too exalted nature? Did He, a martyr to his own greatness, weep that he had not remained the simple carpenter of Nazareth? We do not know.
When, at some future day, our period of civilisation shall lie, closed and completed, before the eyes of later generations, German theology will stand out as a great, a unique phenomenon in the mental and spiritual life of our time. For nowhere save in the German temperament can there be found in the same perfection the living complex of conditions and factors-of philosophic thought, critical acumen, historical insight, and religious feeling-without which no deep theology is possible.