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Old 05-25-2018, 11:37 AM   #1
zeek
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Default Poor poor Christianity?

Christianity was invented because the Apocalypse did not come quickly as predicted.
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Last edited by awareness; 05-31-2018 at 07:23 AM.
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Old 05-25-2018, 01:35 PM   #2
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If the God of the Old Testament was invented, then everything that proceeds forward, including Christianity is a man-made invention. If Jesus Christ was not who he said he was, if he didn't come from where he said he came from, and if he did not rise from the dead, then Christianity is just another one of many mystery religions of the Greco-Roman world, simply riding on the coat-tails of still another ancient, invented, man-made religion.
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Old 05-25-2018, 01:44 PM   #3
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Christianity was invented because of the Apocalypse did not come quickly as predicted.
I don't know if "invented" will hold up under scrutiny, but II Peter, written somewhere between 120 & 150 AD, by who knows who, solved the problem by saying a thousand years is as a day in heavenly time.

So now it's been only two days since Jesus went up to spend time with daddy. And if he wants to spend at least two weeks with daddy, he won't come back for another 12,000 years. Thanks whoever wrote II Peter.
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Old 05-26-2018, 05:26 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
If the God of the Old Testament was invented, then everything that proceeds forward, including Christianity is a man-made invention. If Jesus Christ was not who he said he was, if he didn't come from where he said he came from, and if he did not rise from the dead, then Christianity is just another one of many mystery religions of the Greco-Roman world, simply riding on the coat-tails of still another ancient, invented, man-made religion.
-
I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.

So, I'm not asserting that the God of the Old Testament or the claims of Jesus are inventions. Indeed, I'm not saying that Christianity was invented in the sense in which to invent can mean to deceive. Rather, I'm saying it was a human response to a problem of cognitive dissonance.

Jesus did not return in glory during the lifetime of the first generation of believers as promised nor in subsequent generations. An explanation needed to be found, religious belief and practice needed to be modified and formalized, and a permanent structure of government needed to be instituted. The institution that evolved in place of the original Jesus movement is what I'm referring to as "Christianity" here.
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:00 AM   #5
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Default Re: Poor poor Christianity

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeek View Post
I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.

So, I'm not asserting that the God of the Old Testament or the claims of Jesus are inventions. Indeed, I'm not saying that Christianity was invented in the sense in which to invent can mean to deceive. Rather, I'm saying it was a human response to a problem of cognitive dissonance.

Jesus did not return in glory during the lifetime of the first generation of believers as promised nor in subsequent generations. An explanation needed to be found, religious belief and practice needed to be modified and formalized, a permanent structure of government was instituted. The institution that evolved in place of the original Jesus movement is what I'm referring to as "Christianity" here.
Where was that broken promise?
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:06 AM   #6
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I don't know if "invented" will hold up under scrutiny, but II Peter, written somewhere between 120 & 150 AD, by who knows who, solved the problem by saying a thousand years is as a day in heavenly time.

So now it's been only two days since Jesus went up to spend time with daddy. And if he wants to spend at least two weeks with daddy, he won't come back for another 12,000 years. Thanks whoever wrote II Peter.
The proposition that II Peter was written near the middle of the second century would support my hypothesis. Jesus had said "Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place." [Mark 13:30 Matthew 24:34, Luke 21:32]

Yet the original disciples were all dead, and the Lord still tarried. The notion that to God a day equals a thousand years and that the end was delayed to allow all people adequate time to repent attempted to rationalize this dilemma.

Now we need to ask what the bases are for supposing that II Peter was of late origin and is pseudepigraphical. For this I submit the Wiki entry on II Peter as exhibit A. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Epistle_of_Peter
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Old 05-26-2018, 06:08 AM   #7
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Where was that broken promise?
See my response to Awareness below.
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Old 05-26-2018, 08:32 AM   #8
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I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.
I should have known you had something up your sleeve in the OP. I find your hypothesis fascinating, and when one takes an honest, objective and historical view of the earliest post-NT history, it makes a lot of sense. So where would you set the boundary or transitional point when "the Church" transformed or morphed into "Christianity"? I would think most people would say it took place during the reign of Constantine. And frankly, I've never had a good argument against this contention. There is little doubt that the church became more institutionalized during those years.

Your observation about LC taking a "New Testament model" is spot on. Of course Nee/Lee were not the first to make an attempt at "restoration" or "recovery", they are simply the ones we are most familiar with.

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Old 05-26-2018, 09:05 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by zeek View Post
I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.
While there was an apostolic age in the 1st century, I find that a "distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament" is fraught with issues. There never was a "glorious" church, or a pure N.T. church, free from error, problems, heresy, etc. These issues started in the very beginning and have continued unabated until today.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:50 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by zeek View Post
I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.

So, I'm not asserting that the God of the Old Testament or the claims of Jesus are inventions. Indeed, I'm not saying that Christianity was invented in the sense in which to invent can mean to deceive. Rather, I'm saying it was a human response to a problem of cognitive dissonance.

Jesus did not return in glory during the lifetime of the first generation of believers as promised nor in subsequent generations. An explanation needed to be found, religious belief and practice needed to be modified and formalized, a permanent structure of government was instituted. The institution that evolved in place of the original Jesus movement is what I'm referring to as "Christianity" here.
Several comments.

1. I think the first step in this "man made" Christianity in response to a lack of faith (my understanding of your term "cognitive dissonance" and it includes both misunderstanding of the word of God as well as lack of faith in following the Lord) is referred to Rev 2 when the Lord tells the church in Ephesus that "they have left their first love". I understand this expression to refer to the church becoming institutionalized with rules and doctrines that are not aligned with the Lord's speaking in the gospels. So I would disagree with the 1st Post, it wasn't a matter of the Lord not returning during the lifetime of the Apostles but rather the setting up of an organization that veered from the Lord's word in the Gospels.

2. The reason this "man made construct" would "overtake" the church is simply because it is an easier, broad road that leads to destruction. Easier to build with shoddy materials than with gold, and precious stones. I would argue that the church is God's masterpiece which He plans on unveiling at the Lord's second coming (fulfilling the whole marriage symbolism). So it is not so much "Christianity overtaking" but rather it is simply "fool's gold". A poor imitation of the real thing.

3. The assertion that Jesus promised to return in the lifetime of the apostles is not supported by scripture. First, no verse is of its own interpretation, so no doctrine of this promise should hang on a single verse. Second, the Lord said very clearly that "no one knew the day nor the hour" and this interpretation seems to fly in the face of that. Third, the gospel of John indicates that Jesus told Peter by what death he would die, indicating that Peter would not be alive at the time of the Lord's second coming. Therefore, even if there were some who did form Christianity because, as you say, the Lord had not come yet, that "prediction" was based on a poor human interpretation / opinion.
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Old 05-26-2018, 01:42 PM   #11
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Several comments.

1. I think the first step in this "man made" Christianity in response to a lack of faith (my understanding of your term "cognitive dissonance" and it includes both misunderstanding of the word of God as well as lack of faith in following the Lord) is referred to Rev 2 when the Lord tells the church in Ephesus that "they have left their first love". I understand this expression to refer to the church becoming institutionalized with rules and doctrines that are not aligned with the Lord's speaking in the gospels.

2. The reason this "man made construct" would "overtake" the church is simply because it is an easier, broad road that leads to destruction. Easier to build with shoddy materials than with gold, and precious stones.

3. The assertion that Jesus promised to return in the lifetime of the apostles is not supported by scripture. First, no verse is of its own interpretation, so no doctrine of this promise should hang on a single verse. Second, the Lord said very clearly that "no one knew the day nor the hour" and this interpretation seems to fly in the face of that. Third, the gospel of John indicates that Jesus told Peter by what death he would die, indicating that Peter would not be alive at the time of the Lord's second coming.
Brother, would please consider reworking your comments. I'm not sure but, as is, if I respond, I fear I'll take the thread on a tangent.
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Old 05-26-2018, 03:16 PM   #12
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Brother, would please consider reworking your comments. I'm not sure but, as is, if I respond, I fear I'll take the thread on a tangent.
I have added a little more to post #10 to tie it tighter to the 1st post.
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Old 05-26-2018, 07:25 PM   #13
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I have added a little more to post #10 to tie it tighter to the 1st post.
Well that helped, some. But okay bro ZNP,

I think I understand . . . :
1. I think the first step in this "man made" Christianity in response to a lack of faith (my understanding of your term "cognitive dissonance" and it includes both misunderstanding of the word of God as well as lack of faith in following the Lord) is referred to Rev 2 when the Lord tells the church in Ephesus that "they have left their first love".
. . . if you mean leaving the first love caused a man made replacement system.

Also, the "day and the hour" has no effect on "this generation." Neither does Jesus predicting Peters death.

This generation could include them.

And finally, not one verse points to "this generation." Bro zeek listed three witnesses ; Mark, Matt., Luke (Not John ... something perchance we'll kick around up the road on this thread). But three witnesses are substantial for our surviving records.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:29 PM   #14
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Christianity was invented because the Apocalypse did not come quickly as predicted.
I disagree because the early church knew that the whole world needed to be evangelized before Christ returned (Matt 24:14). They were not merely waiting around for Christ to come back.

The early church grew and spread out, to that end. The intention was that the early church would spread across the world.

Before that could happen, the church became institutionalized due to political reasons (the Catholic Church and Constantine). The goal of evangelizing the world was still happening but through the religious-political institution of the Catholic Church. Men such as St Patrick, St Augustine, are known for that. This was God's sovereignty to enable the Gospel to be preached via Catholicism and spread through Europe.

The recovery does not say that all of these things should never happened and then try to re-write history. Rather it recognizes God's Sovereignty and moves through the ages and sees that it's at that time where the church should be preparing for Christ's return and leaving the old institutions which have fulfilled their purpose in history.

The problem is not that these institutions existed or that Christianity became institutionalized, the problem is that people wish to remain in institutionalized Christianity which has served its purpose instead of of moving on.

Even so, the recovery never says that the church will ever or must become the same situation as early Christianity, it is well known that denominations will still be around when Christ returns, it's in the bible.
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Old 05-26-2018, 09:41 PM   #15
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I'm making a distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament much like Witness Lee did. According to my hypothesis, Christianity overtakes the church which is why, in the minds of Local Churchers and others who take the New Testament as their model, the church must be recovered.

So, I'm not asserting that the God of the Old Testament or the claims of Jesus are inventions. Indeed, I'm not saying that Christianity was invented in the sense in which to invent can mean to deceive. Rather, I'm saying it was a human response to a problem of cognitive dissonance.

Jesus did not return in glory during the lifetime of the first generation of believers as promised nor in subsequent generations. An explanation needed to be found, religious belief and practice needed to be modified and formalized, and a permanent structure of government needed to be instituted. The institution that evolved in place of the original Jesus movement is what I'm referring to as "Christianity" here.
You are thinking about this too objectively. The focus of the recovery is not New Testament model but New Testament condition. There's a difference.

The recovery is needed for this time before the Lord comes back, just as Luther was needed in his time.
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Old 05-27-2018, 04:17 AM   #16
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I should have known you had something up your sleeve in the OP. I find your hypothesis fascinating, and when one takes an honest, objective and historical view of the earliest post-NT history, it makes a lot of sense. So where would you set the boundary or transitional point when "the Church" transformed or morphed into "Christianity"? I would think most people would say it took place during the reign of Constantine. And frankly, I've never had a good argument against this contention. There is little doubt that the church became more institutionalized during those years.

Your observation about LC taking a "New Testament model" is spot on. Of course Nee/Lee were not the first to make an attempt at "restoration" or "recovery", they are simply the ones we are most familiar with.

-
Constantine certainly represented a milestone in the development of Christianity. He set a precedent for the position of the emperor exerting influence and ultimate regulatory authority within religious discussions involving the early Christian Councils. But I think the wheels of Christianity were in motion several centuries before Constantine. Two Pre-Constantine trends that I would point to are the development of hierarchical authority and the work of church fathers.
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Old 05-27-2018, 04:38 AM   #17
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You are thinking about this too objectively. The focus of the recovery is not New Testament model but New Testament condition. There's a difference.

The recovery is needed for this time before the Lord comes back, just as Luther was needed in his time.
So that's the real meaning of the parable of the fig tree?

Witness Lee and Hal Lindsey thought it was the state of Israel. They were wrong. What else were/are they wrong about?
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Old 05-27-2018, 04:49 AM   #18
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While there was an apostolic age in the 1st century, I find that a "distinction between "Christianity" and the church as it is depicted in the New Testament" is fraught with issues. There never was a "glorious" church, or a pure N.T. church, free from error, problems, heresy, etc. These issues started in the very beginning and have continued unabated until today.
I agree the distinction is fraught with issues. But I don't see why we can't discuss the issues. I don't expect absolute agreement here. But, perhaps through discussion we can at least clarify the issues in our own minds.
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Old 05-27-2018, 05:09 AM   #19
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I agree the distinction is fraught with issues. But I don't see why we can't discuss the issues. I don't expect absolute agreement here. But, perhaps through discussion we can at least clarify the issues in our own minds.
Ok. Without the standards and teachings of the NT, the church would have drifted further and further off course, not ever knowing where we started from. Growing up in the RCC I would have considered it completely normal to worship the "mother of God" as the rest of my extended family.

I see the true Church continually needing to unload itself of "extras" or traditions that we seem to always accumulate over time. Practices always tend to be codified into ordinances which, though they were once helpful, have become legalistic bondages to successive generations. Hence the need to "return" to the pure word, dumping these leavens.

The LCM began this way in the US. Actively returning to the word of God is a practice that brings blessing from God. Unfortunately and ironically Lee introduced far more baggage over time than most of us started with. Hence the cycle must be repeated.
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Old 05-27-2018, 05:12 AM   #20
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Constantine certainly represented a milestone in the development of Christianity. He set a precedent for the position of the emperor exerting influence and ultimate regulatory authority within religious discussions involving the early Christian Councils. But I think the wheels of Christianity were in motion several centuries before Constantine. Two Pre-Constantine trends that I would point to are the development of hierarchical authority and the work of church fathers.
Let's not forget that there would be no "Christianity" without "Christian." And that brings us to Paul and Antioch :

Act 11:26* And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.*
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Old 05-27-2018, 06:00 AM   #21
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Let's not forget that there would be no "Christianity" without "Christian." And that brings us to Paul and Antioch :

Act 11:26* And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.*
Christianity did not begin until the second century. Until that time it was called "the way". It went from being "the Way", to "Catholic" meaning Universal or all-embracing of pagan things and heresies.
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Old 05-27-2018, 07:22 AM   #22
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Hence the cycle must be repeated.
So we need to recover from The Recovery?

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Ok. Without the standards and teachings of the NT, the church would have drifted further and further off course, not ever knowing where we started from.
Biblically speaking the church started at Pentecost ; Pentecost "invented" the church.

So the early church -- the earliest of the earliest church -- was Holy Spirit animated. Methinks we sometimes get distracted by staring into a book, and that perchance is what brings us astray. According to the record, the earliest church was true because of the Spirit ... or that "pesky" Wind.

Problem is that churchin' by the Spirit is like herding cats, cuz : "The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."

My point being : if we ever hope to recover the early church we're gonna have ta repeat Pentecost.

But Paul writes to the Romans : "Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above*

How do we recover the early church if we can't catch the Wind? I hate to say it but, the early church, if exists today, is literally blowing in The Wind ... or it is not ... but something else ... the something else we see today.

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I see the true Church continually needing to unload itself of "extras" or traditions that we seem to always accumulate over time. Practices always tend to be codified into ordinances which, though they were once helpful, have become legalistic bondages to successive generations. Hence the need to "return" to the pure word, dumping these leavens.
That's insightful. But I still think we need to "return" to pentecost.

Maybe we go astray because we can't ascend into heaven to bring "that" down, and can't control "that Wind."

Hey, didn't Jesus say, "I will build my church?"
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Old 05-27-2018, 07:27 AM   #23
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Christianity did not begin until the second century. Until that time it was called "the way". It went from being "the Way", to "Catholic" meaning Universal or all-embracing of pagan things and heresies.
That's one way to see it. Are you saying that untrue Christianity began with the proto-orthodox?

Still, when was Antioch started?
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Old 05-27-2018, 08:48 AM   #24
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Several comments.

1. I think the first step in this "man made" Christianity in response to a lack of faith (my understanding of your term "cognitive dissonance" and it includes both misunderstanding of the word of God as well as lack of faith in following the Lord) is referred to Rev 2 when the Lord tells the church in Ephesus that "they have left their first love". I understand this expression to refer to the church becoming institutionalized with rules and doctrines that are not aligned with the Lord's speaking in the gospels. So I would disagree with the 1st Post, it wasn't a matter of the Lord not returning during the lifetime of the Apostles but rather the setting up of an organization that veered from the Lord's word in the Gospels.

2. The reason this "man made construct" would "overtake" the church is simply because it is an easier, broad road that leads to destruction. Easier to build with shoddy materials than with gold, and precious stones. I would argue that the church is God's masterpiece which He plans on unveiling at the Lord's second coming (fulfilling the whole marriage symbolism). So it is not so much "Christianity overtaking" but rather it is simply "fool's gold". A poor imitation of the real thing.

3. The assertion that Jesus promised to return in the lifetime of the apostles is not supported by scripture. First, no verse is of its own interpretation, so no doctrine of this promise should hang on a single verse. Second, the Lord said very clearly that "no one knew the day nor the hour" and this interpretation seems to fly in the face of that. Third, the gospel of John indicates that Jesus told Peter by what death he would die, indicating that Peter would not be alive at the time of the Lord's second coming. Therefore, even if there were some who did form Christianity because, as you say, the Lord had not come yet, that "prediction" was based on a poor human interpretation / opinion.
On points 1 and 2 I would say that the fact that Jesus tarried for multiple generations necessitated a more permanent organization and tradition than was envisioned by Paul. To point three my response is that if Jesus did not teach that he would return in that generation then it seems that Paul misunderstood him because he expected that some would be " alive and remain " when Jesus returned as he stated in First Thessalonians 4:17. He told the Corinthians that they were those upon whom the end of the age had arrived( I Cor 10:11) and that they would not all "sleep" meaning die. (I Cor 15:51)
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Old 05-27-2018, 02:34 PM   #25
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On points 1 and 2 I would say that the fact that Jesus tarried for multiple generations necessitated a more permanent organization and tradition than was envisioned by Paul. To point three my response is that if Jesus did not teach that he would return in that generation then it seems that Paul misunderstood him because he expected that some would be " alive and remain " when Jesus returned as he stated in First Thessalonians 4:17. He told the Thessalonians that they were those upon whom the ends of the world had come and that they would not all sleep meaning die.
I agree that these 2 thousand years have resulted in a very large organization known collectively as "Christianity" which is not to be confused with the church. Based on Rev 2-3 I think this is under the Lord's sovereignty because there are a number of things we need to overcome before we are mature enough to rule and reign with Jesus.

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first; 17 then we that are alive, that are left, shall together with them be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

I read the term "we" as referring to the believers collectively who are still alive, not specific to the people who first received this letter.
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Old 05-27-2018, 03:11 PM   #26
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16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first; 17 then we that are alive, that are left, shall together with them be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

I read the term "we" as referring to the believers collectively who are still alive, not specific to the people who first received this letter.
Paul expected for it to happen in his lifetime. Yet 2000 yrs and he still hasn't resurrected. Truth is, there's nothing left of him to resurrect. He's been dust for a couple thousand yrs.
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Old 05-27-2018, 04:51 PM   #27
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That's one way to see it. Are you saying that untrue Christianity began with the proto-orthodox?

Still, when was Antioch started?
The true religion established by Christ was called "the way". The Christianity that was started in the 2nd century adopted many pagan practices such as Easter. Hence the word "Catholic" means "the way plus paganism".
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Old 05-27-2018, 05:57 PM   #28
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I disagree because the early church knew that the whole world needed to be evangelized before Christ returned (Matt 24:14). They were not merely waiting around for Christ to come back.

The early church grew and spread out, to that end. The intention was that the early church would spread across the world.

Before that could happen, the church became institutionalized due to political reasons (the Catholic Church and Constantine). The goal of evangelizing the world was still happening but through the religious-political institution of the Catholic Church. Men such as St Patrick, St Augustine, are known for that. This was God's sovereignty to enable the Gospel to be preached via Catholicism and spread through Europe.

The recovery does not say that all of these things should never happened and then try to re-write history. Rather it recognizes God's Sovereignty and moves through the ages and sees that it's at that time where the church should be preparing for Christ's return and leaving the old institutions which have fulfilled their purpose in history.

The problem is not that these institutions existed or that Christianity became institutionalized, the problem is that people wish to remain in institutionalized Christianity which has served its purpose instead of of moving on.

Even so, the recovery never says that the church will ever or must become the same situation as early Christianity, it is well known that denominations will still be around when Christ returns, it's in the bible.
You're entitled to your opinion. Witness Lee felt otherwise. Matthew 13:31-32 reads as follows
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31 Another parable He put forth to them, saying: “The kingdom of heaven is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field, 32 which indeed is the least of all the seeds; but when it is grown it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and nest in its branches.”
Here's what the Recovery Version says about it:
Quote:
The church, which is the embodiment of the kingdom, should be like an herb that produces food. However, its nature and function were changed, so that it became a “tree,” a lodging place for birds. (This is against the law of God’s creation, that is, that every plant must be according to its kind — Gen. 1: 11-12.) This change happened in the first part of the fourth century, when Constantine the Great mixed the church with the world. He brought thousands of false believers into Christianity, making it Christendom, no longer the church. Hence, this third parable corresponds with the third of the seven churches in Rev. 2 and 3, the church in Pergamos (Rev. 2: 12-17 — see note 121 there). The mustard is an annual herb, whereas the tree is a perennial plant. The church, according to its heavenly and spiritual nature, should be like the mustard, sojourning on the earth. But with its nature changed, the church became deeply rooted and settled as a tree in the earth, flourishing with its enterprises as the branches in which many evil persons and things are lodged. This resulted in the formation of the outward organization of the outward appearance of the kingdom of the heavens.
Since the birds in the first parable signify the evil one, Satan (vv. 4, 19), the birds of heaven here must refer to Satan’s evil spirits with the evil persons and things motivated by them. They lodge in the branches of the great tree, that is, in the enterprises of Christendom.
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Old 05-27-2018, 06:27 PM   #29
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You're entitled to your opinion. Witness Lee felt otherwise. Matthew 13:31-32 reads as follows


Here's what the Recovery Version says about it:
What you posted does not reflect the whole of Lee's teachings on the subject. I recall a specific life study or was it a training or conference where it was mentioned about how God has used Christianity to spread the gospel, even though it is a mixture of paganism and Empire.

On God's use of the Roman Empire (and the Roman Catholic Church) in spreading the gospel, quoting Lee:

"The Lord used the Roman Empire to form and spread the gospel."

On Satan's use of the Roman Empire (and the Roman Catholic Church) in persecuting believers:

"Satan used the Roman Empire to persecute the church and to kill many believers"

On the equivalence between the Roman Empire and the Roman Catholic Church:

"This indicates that the two - the Roman Empire and the Roman Church - are one".

Lee speaks of both genuine and false believers in the Roman Catholic Church.

"In every denomination, including the Roman Catholic Church, there are real, saved Christians. They are God’s people belonging to the Lord".

We could say the same about the USA today because it is the revived Roman Empire:

"The Lord used the USA to spread the gospel."

"Satan used the USA to persecute the church" - an example is prevention of using the name of God or Jesus, or even the local churches being called a cult by the religious arm of the American Empire.
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Old 05-27-2018, 07:46 PM   #30
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The true religion established by Christ was called "the way". The Christianity that was started in the 2nd century adopted many pagan practices such as Easter. Hence the word "Catholic" means "the way plus paganism".
Hey, whoever wrote the gospel we call John, borrowed from the pagans, and even opens his gospel with it. So the gospel of John could be the 'another Jesus' Paul warned about 40 years prior ... cuz it brought paganism into "The Way."

But since John came at the end of the first century, there was plenty of time for what by that time was called Christianity to stray.

For example, we have three witnesses saying "this generation shall not pass away, and two witnesses, btw, Matthew & Luke that has Jesus saying "There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom," yet no mention of either in John.

Obviously, by the end of the 1st c., Christianity had to take another shape, other than expecting Jesus to come back and setup his kingdom.

Jerusalem had been sacked for almost 30 years, and the Romans still occupied the holy land, and ruled over them.

And Christianity was becoming a gentile movement, and therefore Hellenized. It couldn't be helped. Thus all the NT is in Koine Greek ... and John borrowed from the pagan Heraclitus of Ephesus (c. 535 – c. 475 BC) . When he could have used the OT, Proverbs 8, as his basis.
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Old 05-27-2018, 09:59 PM   #31
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Hey, whoever wrote the gospel we call John, borrowed from the pagans, and even opens his gospel with it. So the gospel of John could be the 'another Jesus' Paul warned about 40 years prior ... cuz it brought paganism into "The Way."

But since John came at the end of the first century, there was plenty of time for what by that time was called Christianity to stray.

For example, we have three witnesses saying "this generation shall not pass away, and two witnesses, btw, Matthew & Luke that has Jesus saying "There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom," yet no mention of either in John.

Obviously, by the end of the 1st c., Christianity had to take another shape, other than expecting Jesus to come back and setup his kingdom.

Jerusalem had been sacked for almost 30 years, and the Romans still occupied the holy land, and ruled over them.

And Christianity was becoming a gentile movement, and therefore Hellenized. It couldn't be helped. Thus all the NT is in Koine Greek ... and John borrowed from the pagan Heraclitus of Ephesus (c. 535 – c. 475 BC) . When he could have used the OT, Proverbs 8, as his basis.
I don't think Christianity "had to take" another shape. Imagine a scenario where Constantine did not adopt Christianity as the religion of the Empire. In that case, Christianity would be like Buddhism is today, a way of life, with no real institutional structure.
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Old 05-28-2018, 02:40 AM   #32
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Ok. Without the standards and teachings of the NT, the church would have drifted further and further off course, not ever knowing where we started from. Growing up in the RCC I would have considered it completely normal to worship the "mother of God" as the rest of my extended family.

I see the true Church continually needing to unload itself of "extras" or traditions that we seem to always accumulate over time. Practices always tend to be codified into ordinances which, though they were once helpful, have become legalistic bondages to successive generations. Hence the need to "return" to the pure word, dumping these leavens.

The LCM began this way in the US. Actively returning to the word of God is a practice that brings blessing from God. Unfortunately and ironically Lee introduced far more baggage over time than most of us started with. Hence the cycle must be repeated.
The two most important manifestations of Christianity from the 4th Century on are sometimes referred to as Church Christianity. Church Christianity includes the Roman Catholic Church the Eastern Orthodox church and many of the earlier Protestant churches such as the Lutheran Presbyterian and Anglican churches. Biblical Christianity develops out of Church Christianity but it locates God's highest authority in the Bible.

So by and large what Witness Lee refers to as Christianity I'm now calling Church Christianity. At the heart of it is hierarchical power that flows down from Heaven to Earth from God the Father through his Son the mediator who in turn channels power through his designated representatives on Earth-- the clergy. Church Christianity aims to create a universal Christian Society and when necessary is willing to enter into alliance with political power to achieve this aim.

The Lord's recovery movement, of course, came out of Biblical Christianity which was facilitated by the printing press. With the Bible as a supreme authority for life people no longer needed a priest Bishop Pope or theologian they could form their own community of saints living in conformity to God's word. You know all this, and I think what I'm saying here is essentially an agreement with what you have said above.
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Old 05-28-2018, 03:52 AM   #33
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Let's not forget that there would be no "Christianity" without "Christian." And that brings us to Paul and Antioch :

Act 11:26* And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch. And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.*
That's certainly significant in the shift of the church from being a Jewish sect to Christianity. The followers of Jesus in Judea and Galilee are never referred to as Christians in the Bible. Indeed the term Christian seems to be reserved for Gentile followers of Jesus.

Antioch was the third largest city in the Roman Empire. It replaced Jerusalem as the center of the early Jesus movement. According to Acts a Christian Mission among the antiochian Jews began when refugees from persecution arrived after the martyrdom of Stephen [Acts 11:19].

In the centuries that followed Antioch became a great center of Christian learning. Ignatius who was martyred early in the second century CE was its third Bishop according to tradition. In speaking of the authority of the church Ignatius was the first to use the term "Catholic Church" in writing.
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Old 05-28-2018, 04:24 AM   #34
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The true religion established by Christ was called "the way". The Christianity that was started in the 2nd century adopted many pagan practices such as Easter. Hence the word "Catholic" means "the way plus paganism".
Kind of like saying the ground of locality means church plus Leeism.
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Old 05-28-2018, 07:08 AM   #35
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You are thinking about this too objectively. The focus of the recovery is not New Testament model but New Testament condition. There's a difference.

The recovery is needed for this time before the Lord comes back, just as Luther was needed in his time.
  • Objective inquiry seems to be appropriate to the study of history.
  • Would you care to explain the distinction you're making between New Testament model and New Testament condition?
  • According, Luther was part of the Recovery not someone who came before it.
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Old 05-28-2018, 08:39 AM   #36
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I don't think Christianity "had to take" another shape.
Indeed, "had to" might be too strong. But by the end of the 1st c. (when John was written) can you imagine the disappointment they must have experienced because Jesus hadn't returned, hadn't driven out the Romans, and hadn't setup God's kingdom, like promised?

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Imagine a scenario where Constantine did not adopt Christianity as the religion of the Empire. In that case, Christianity would be like Buddhism is today, a way of life, with no real institutional structure.
Good point. I have to admit I'm having a problem imagining it. With no RCC there'd be no Protestant, no Luther et al. And no Restoration or Recovery. No Lee What would Christianity be today without Constantine? Perchance today real Christianity would still be oral Christianity ... who knows?

But seriously, a lot had already changed since Jesus, by 325 CE. For one thing Paul happened. In Matthew (written after Paul's letters) Jesus tells the 12 "Go not into the way of the Gentiles..." But in Acts (also written after Paul's letters) Jesus is said to have called Paul to go to the gentiles. That was the birth of "Christian." So 'Christian' was a change. (Didn't it start out as a derogatory name, cuz Christ followers were considered atheists, that didn't honor the gods?)

In our earliest accounts, by Paul, Paul was already seeing changes happening ; thus warnings about different gospels and different Jesus's (sp) ; and his troubles with Asia ; not to mention John, who was holding to the 'earliest' Jesus Jewish way. Changes were afoot early on.

And changes went on, long before 325CE. For instance, Marcion of Sinope, early 2nd c.. He was a significant figure. He was excommunicated by the proto-orthodox, but he kicked off the development of the NT canon.

That brings me back to the proto-orthodox. I've seen -- or been close enough to -- how devotees tend to get their masters all wrong. That to me is the proto-orthodox.

I've haven't read all the early church fathers. But I've read enough to question if we should even listen to them at all.

I seek to understand what was before them. In fact, my keen interest is in understanding what was before even Paul. The gospels don't get me there, completely. They were written too many decades after Jesus to convince me of the real Jesus, and what he actually taught and held to.

Cuz I think, "Christianity," so called, changed from its purest form, the Jesus form, during the oral period ; pre any writings.

Of course I can't document any of that. Cuz it was oral, and not written.

Thanks for your thoughts Evan.
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Old 05-28-2018, 11:03 AM   #37
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Paul expected for it to happen in his lifetime. Yet 2000 yrs and he still hasn't resurrected. Truth is, there's nothing left of him to resurrect. He's been dust for a couple thousand yrs.
The only thing that is very clear from this quote is that Paul "expected" that at the Lord's return some Christians would be dead and buried and some would be alive.
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Old 05-28-2018, 12:49 PM   #38
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The only thing that is very clear from this quote is that Paul "expected" that at the Lord's return some Christians would be dead and buried and some would be alive.
1Co 15:51* Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,*
1Co 15:52* In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.*
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Old 05-29-2018, 04:42 AM   #39
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What you posted does not reflect the whole of Lee's teachings on the subject. I recall a specific life study or was it a training or conference where it was mentioned about how God has used Christianity to spread the gospel, even though it is a mixture of paganism and Empire.

On God's use of the Roman Empire (and the Roman Catholic Church) in spreading the gospel, quoting Lee:

"The Lord used the Roman Empire to form and spread the gospel."

On Satan's use of the Roman Empire (and the Roman Catholic Church) in persecuting believers:

"Satan used the Roman Empire to persecute the church and to kill many believers"

On the equivalence between the Roman Empire and the Roman Catholic Church:

"This indicates that the two - the Roman Empire and the Roman Church - are one".

Lee speaks of both genuine and false believers in the Roman Catholic Church.

"In every denomination, including the Roman Catholic Church, there are real, saved Christians. They are God’s people belonging to the Lord".

We could say the same about the USA today because it is the revived Roman Empire:

"The Lord used the USA to spread the gospel."

"Satan used the USA to persecute the church" - an example is prevention of using the name of God or Jesus, or even the local churches being called a cult by the religious arm of the American Empire.
The argument that any particular statement or passage from Witness Lee's teachings do not reflect the whole of his teachings could be used against anything that he ever said refutable only by quotintg his entire body of work. So if one accepts that argument it's useless to quote Lee.

Suffice it to say, Witness Lee's view of Christianity was predominantly negative particularly as it pertains to Church Christianity as I have defined it below. To Lee the Recovery takes place mostly within Biblical Christianity as I have defined it.

As far as using God's sovereignty to justify Christianity or anything else, it made be said that God is Sovereign over Satan and all the evil activity in the world. So if you want to include Christianity in that who can argue?
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Old 05-29-2018, 05:07 AM   #40
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Hey, whoever wrote the gospel we call John, borrowed from the pagans, and even opens his gospel with it. So the gospel of John could be the 'another Jesus' Paul warned about 40 years prior ... cuz it brought paganism into "The Way."

But since John came at the end of the first century, there was plenty of time for what by that time was called Christianity to stray.

For example, we have three witnesses saying "this generation shall not pass away, and two witnesses, btw, Matthew & Luke that has Jesus saying "There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom," yet no mention of either in John.

Obviously, by the end of the 1st c., Christianity had to take another shape, other than expecting Jesus to come back and setup his kingdom.

Jerusalem had been sacked for almost 30 years, and the Romans still occupied the holy land, and ruled over them.

And Christianity was becoming a gentile movement, and therefore Hellenized. It couldn't be helped. Thus all the NT is in Koine Greek ... and John borrowed from the pagan Heraclitus of Ephesus (c. 535 – c. 475 BC) . When he could have used the OT, Proverbs 8, as his basis.
Yes, I think there is evidence of the transition of the Jesus movement from a Jewish apocalyptical sect to what we're calling Christianity beginning in the New Testament itself. The apocalyptic message, so prominent in the synoptic gospels, is absent from the Gospel of John which most scholars think was the last gospel written.

Unlike in the other gospels, Jesus does not deliver an apocalyptic discourse in John. The kingdom of God is entered by those who have faith in Jesus as in John 3:3. When Martha thinks Jesus is referring to the resurrection at the end of time in chapter 11 verse 23, Jesus corrects her. He is referring to himself as the Resurrection in the present. "Those who believe in me even though they die will live and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die [John 11:25-26.] Thus begins the shift of emphasis way from the general resurrection to the fate of the individual in the afterlife immediately upon death which is denied for the believer. This emphasis on the immediate afterlife is a prevalent characteristic of Church Christianity to this day. Biblical Christianity vacillates between apocalypticism and heaven when you die.
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Old 05-29-2018, 08:24 PM   #41
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I agree that these 2 thousand years have resulted in a very large organization known collectively as "Christianity" which is not to be confused with the church. Based on Rev 2-3 I think this is under the Lord's sovereignty because there are a number of things we need to overcome before we are mature enough to rule and reign with Jesus.

16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven, with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first; 17 then we that are alive, that are left, shall together with them be caught up in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

I read the term "we" as referring to the believers collectively who are still alive, not specific to the people who first received this letter.
Your conception of Christianity may be closer to Witness Lee's than Evengelical's is. Lee said that when Constantine brought thousands of false believers into Christianity he made it into Christendom and thus it was no longer the church.(Life study of Matthew, chapter 38, section 2)

You mention that God is sovereign in doing this. Evangelical made the same point. Is there anything that God is not sovereign over in the universe?

Then you're back to your favorite principal ''ruling and reigning' as justification for the delay. How has humanity matured over the past 2000 years when the human lifespan hasn't gotten appreciably longer. But who knows maybe you can make a speculative case using Steven Pinker's statistics and analysis.

Any way, you address the collective "we" as far as being alive and remaining. But you ignore the fact that Paul told the Corinthians that they were those upon whom the end of the world had come and that they would not all sleep. The collective "we" doesn't work in that context. You also ignore Paul's statements that the appointed time has grown short and that the present form of this world is passing away in 1st Corinthians 7.
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Old 05-29-2018, 08:42 PM   #42
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Paul expected for it to happen in his lifetime. Yet 2000 yrs and he still hasn't resurrected. Truth is, there's nothing left of him to resurrect. He's been dust for a couple thousand yrs.
You are of course aware that energy can neither be created nor destroyed; it can only be transformed from one form to another. Therefore that which was Paul exists somewhere in some form or another. Would Resurrection be difficult for the omnipotent, omniscient God who created the universe? Just asking.
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Old 05-29-2018, 08:54 PM   #43
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The true religion established by Christ was called "the way". The Christianity that was started in the 2nd century adopted many pagan practices such as Easter. Hence the word "Catholic" means "the way plus paganism".
In Matthew 13 the parable of the wheat in the tares the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his fields, but the enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat while he slept. It seems like the tares may have been sown during the New Testament period.
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Old 05-30-2018, 01:15 AM   #44
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In Matthew 13 the parable of the wheat in the tares the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his fields, but the enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat while he slept. It seems like the tares may have been sown during the New Testament period.
Starting with Judas, yes.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:10 AM   #45
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Your conception of Christianity may be closer to Witness Lee's than Evengelical's is. Lee said that when Constantine brought thousands of false believers into Christianity he made it into Christendom and thus it was no longer the church.(Life study of Matthew, chapter 38, section 2)

You mention that God is sovereign in doing this. Evangelical made the same point. Is there anything that God is not sovereign over in the universe?
No, that is what "Lord of all" means.

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Then you're back to your favorite principal ''ruling and reigning' as justification for the delay. How has humanity matured over the past 2000 years when the human lifespan hasn't gotten appreciably longer. But who knows maybe you can make a speculative case using Steven Pinker's statistics and analysis.
Forensic science has been an area of tremendous improvement. In my lifetime I remember people getting mugged in Central Park on pay day. You would get a vague description of the criminal. Cars were stolen frequently. There seemed to be no way to catch or stop the criminals. But then the Mob was caught and successfully prosecuted. Surveillance technology and Lojack have all but eliminated chop shops. Now we have a new wave of cameras that every single home owner can afford, not to mention businesses. Now when they have a suspect we always have a photo. Just last night I saw the new wave of photos which are sharp, HD quality. Our ability to catch perpetrators of crimes, convicting the guilty and exonerating the innocent has improved exponentially, it is truly astounding how far we have come. This works both ways. How often do we see a video now of questionable police activity? Without those smart phones those incidents would have all been "justified", but now the actions are scrutinized under the light of a very intense microscope. So accountability from the Police is also going to increase exponentially now that we have cameras on all cops and their cars.

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Any way, you address the collective "we" as far as being alive and remaining. But you ignore the fact that Paul told the Corinthians that they were those upon whom the end of the world had come and that they would not all sleep. The collective "we" doesn't work in that context. You also ignore Paul's statements that the appointed time has grown short and that the present form of this world is passing away in 1st Corinthians 7.
That is right, I use the term "we" to refer to all of us Christians in this age that began with the resurrection. "We" are referred to as "the One New Man" and "the Bride of Christ".
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:33 AM   #46
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No, that is what "Lord of all" means.



Forensic science has been an area of tremendous improvement. In my lifetime I remember people getting mugged in Central Park on pay day. You would get a vague description of the criminal. Cars were stolen frequently. There seemed to be no way to catch or stop the criminals. But then the Mob was caught and successfully prosecuted. Surveillance technology and Lojack have all but eliminated chop shops. Now we have a new wave of cameras that every single home owner can afford, not to mention businesses. Now when they have a suspect we always have a photo. Just last night I saw the new wave of photos which are sharp, HD quality. Our ability to catch perpetrators of crimes, convicting the guilty and exonerating the innocent has improved exponentially, it is truly astounding how far we have come. This works both ways. How often do we see a video now of questionable police activity? Without those smart phones those incidents would have all been "justified", but now the actions are scrutinized under the light of a very intense microscope. So accountability from the Police is also going to increase exponentially now that we have cameras on all cops and their cars.



That is right, I use the term "we" to refer to all of us Christians in this age that began with the resurrection. "We" are referred to as "the One New Man" and "the Bride of Christ".
Okay if God is sovereign over everything that happens in the universe as you have just agreed then I don't know why you bothered to say that you think that God is sovereign over the transformation of the Jesus movement into Christianity as if you weren't sure and were venturing an opinion. Of course he is! He's sovereign over everything.

As far as your use of the term "we" to refer " all of us Christians in this age that began with the resurrection", it doesn't work in all cases. In particular, as I already said, it doesn't work in 1st Corinthians 7 where Paul tells the brothers and sisters that "the appointed time has grown short and now let even those who have wives be as though they have none and those who mourn as those they were not morning and those who rejoice as though they were rejoicing and those who buy as though they have no possessions and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it for the present form of this world is passing away." Because "the appointed time" had not grown short and the present form of the world was not passing away.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:38 AM   #47
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Okay if God is sovereign over everything that happens in the universe as you have just agreed then I don't know why you bothered to say that you think that God is sovereign over the transformation of the Jesus movement into Christianity as if you weren't sure and were venturing an opinion. Of course he is! He's sovereign over everything.

As far as your use of the term "we" to refer " all of us Christians in this age that began with the resurrection", it doesn't work in all cases. In particular it doesn't work in 1st Corinthians 7 where Paul tells the brothers and sisters that "the appointed time has grown short and now let even those who have wives be as though they have none and those who mourn as those they were not morning and those who rejoice as though they were rejoicing and those who buy as though they have no possessions and those who deal with the world as though they had no dealings with it for the present form of this world is passing away." Because the appointed time had not grown short and the present form of the world was not passing away..
You remind me of those people who were mocking Noah.
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Old 05-30-2018, 05:39 AM   #48
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Does this televangelist really need a fourth $54 million private jet?

How do you define "poor"?
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:03 AM   #49
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Does this televangelist really need a fourth $54 million private jet?

How do you define "poor"?
I should have put "poor poor" in quotes when I started to thread. I was really just referencing the other "poor poor Christianity" thread on the main forum where it's a quotation of Witness Lee. Witness Lee seemed to mean that Christianity was poor compared to the Lord's Recovery which through his ministry had recovered the "unsearchable riches of Christ."
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:09 AM   #50
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You remind me of those people who were mocking Noah.
Evangelical accused me of being too objective. I'm just trying to get at the facts, man.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:19 AM   #51
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You are of course aware that energy can neither be created nor destroyed; it can only be transformed from one form to another. Therefore that which was Paul exists somewhere in some form or another. Would Resurrection be difficult for the omnipotent, omniscient God who created the universe? Just asking.
The energy that was Paul turned into fertilizer.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:39 AM   #52
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You remind me of those people who were mocking Noah.
Here's another verse for you to explain if you wish to deny the OP proposition:
"Matthew 10:23 When they persecute you in this city, flee to another. For assuredly, I say to you, you will not have gone through the cities of Israel before the Son of Man comes."
By the way, not only did the Son of Man not come as predicted in Daniel, the disciples were not persecuted so that they had to flee from one city to another.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:50 AM   #53
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The energy that was Paul turned into fertilizer.
He who planted [I Cor 3:6] became a plant?
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:56 AM   #54
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In Matthew 13 the parable of the wheat in the tares the Kingdom of Heaven is like a man who sowed good seed in his fields, but the enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat while he slept. It seems like the tares may have been sown during the New Testament period.
Well maybe. But it happened in the kingdom of heaven.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:58 AM   #55
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Well maybe. But it happened in the kingdom of heaven.
Which was sown on the earth.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:05 AM   #56
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You remind me of those people who were mocking Noah.
You knew them?
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:11 AM   #57
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Which was sown on the earth.
Jesus said he spoke in parables so that people wouldn't understand. Are you able to understand them? The parable opens with "The kingdom of heaven is likened to." Nothing about the earth.

But I think I get your point. That Christianity went south back in the NT age.

If Jesus was the good seed, was Paul a tare?
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:15 AM   #58
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He who planted [I Cor 3:6] became a plant?
Paul became vegetables ... and lived on in vegans. So it's really gonna be confusing to resurrect everybody. Actually, upon thinking about it, Paul did resurrect, into plants. He became immortal.

In that regard, the energy regard, we're all immortal. I'm wheat. Everyone else are tares.
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Old 05-30-2018, 08:07 AM   #59
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Jesus said he spoke in parables so that people wouldn't understand. Are you able to understand them? The parable opens with "The kingdom of heaven is likened to." Nothing about the earth.

But I think I get your point. That Christianity went south back in the NT age.

If Jesus was the good seed, was Paul a tare?
Actually Jesus explains the parable in Matthew chapter 13: 36-43. He says the field in the parable is the world. To establish whether or not Paul was a tare I suggest you look at whether or not his teachings stray from those of Jesus and if they resulted in poor poor Christianity.
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Old 05-30-2018, 08:16 AM   #60
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Paul became vegetables ... and lived on in vegans. So it's really gonna be confusing to resurrect everybody. Actually, upon thinking about it, Paul did resurrect, into plants. He became immortal.

In that regard, the energy regard, we're all immortal. I'm wheat. Everyone else are tares.
Well there you go. Resurrection even works for a materialist. Would Resurrection be confusing to the omniscient God?
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Old 05-30-2018, 09:05 AM   #61
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But I think the wheels of Christianity were in motion several centuries before Constantine. Two Pre-Constantine trends that I would point to are the development of hierarchical authority and the work of church fathers.
I would agree with citing "the development of hierarchical authority" as an catalyst towards the formation of institutional Christianity. "The work of church fathers" was not institutional per se, but they were certainly influential in the formation of most of the seminal doctrines of the Christian faith. So I guess I would agree with your first proposition, but I would strongly disagree that the work of the church fathers had any negative affect. Even the doctrinal errors of some of the church fathers brought forth the opportunity for clarification and correction, and thus even the errors of some turned into great profit for all concerned.

As a personal observation, I have witnessed a great move in modern Church in general, and in Protestantism specifically, of a turning away from "institutional" Christianity. It's rather hard to define this as a "movement" because it has taken it's form or made it's influence in so many different arenas of the Christian church. All the way from the Catholic Charismatic Renewal and the Jesus Movement, to the resurgence of a decidedly creedal/reformed form of teaching/practice/worship. Much to the chagrin of our dear Local Church brothers and sisters, God has apparently chosen to do a "recovery" among those in "poor, poor Christianity" after all.

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Old 05-30-2018, 09:10 AM   #62
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Much to the chagrin of our dear Local Church brothers and sisters, God has apparently chosen to do a "recovery" among those in "poor, poor Christianity" after all.
-
The local church will also have a revival, when they find the new MOTA.
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Old 05-30-2018, 09:37 AM   #63
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The local church will also have a revival, when they find the new MOTA.
But no man knoweth the day or the hour right?
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Old 05-30-2018, 10:00 AM   #64
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Here's another verse for you to explain if you wish to deny the OP proposition:

By the way, not only did the Son of Man not come as predicted in Daniel, the disciples were not persecuted so that they had to flee from one city to another.
What? This doesn't say that you will be persecuted in every city. It says that when that does happen move on because you will need to visit every city on earth before the Lord returns.

This is a great quote to disprove the idea that the NT teaches the Lord was going to come in the lifetime of the apostles.
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Old 05-30-2018, 10:01 AM   #65
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You knew them?
I read about them, and Peter also reminded me of them and warned that these type of mockers would show up again at the end of the age.
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Old 05-30-2018, 11:47 AM   #66
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I read about them, and Peter also reminded me of them and warned that these type of mockers would show up again at the end of the age.
And as in the days of Noah means the Nephilim will reappear.
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Old 05-30-2018, 12:14 PM   #67
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Actually Jesus explains the parable in Matthew chapter 13: 36-43. He says the field in the parable is the world. To establish whether or not Paul was a tare I suggest you look at whether or not his teachings stray from those of Jesus and if they resulted in poor poor Christianity.
Thanks for straightening me out. I stand corrected ... except it was a parable, intending to confuse those that have eyes but can't see, and ears but can't hear.

And yes Paul strayed from the Jesus form of "Christianity." Early Christianity was Jewish, like Jesus and the disciples. Paul brought the gentiles in, and even said to the Romans that, "they [Jews] are enemies of the gospel." And even claimed a mystery, that, a hardening came upon them [Jews], until the full number of the Gentiles has come in.

My goodness, the full number hasn't come in yet? How much do they need to change Christianity to be full? they clearly squashed out the Jewishness of Christianity.

I guess the question is, did they make Christianity poor, poor? From the looks of it, they did.
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Old 05-30-2018, 12:22 PM   #68
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And yes Paul strayed from the Jesus form of "Christianity." Early Christianity was Jewish, like Jesus and the disciples. Paul brought the gentiles in, and even said to the Romans that, "they [Jews] are enemies of the gospel." And even claimed a mystery, that, a hardening came upon them [Jews], until the full number of the Gentiles has come in.
Hardly. Jesus was nearly killed in his hometown for mentioning the Gentiles. The gospel only came to the Jews first, no verse indicates the gospel should stop with the Jews.

Paul said a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart and in the spirit.
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Old 05-30-2018, 01:13 PM   #69
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And as in the days of Noah means the Nephilim will reappear.
That would be "it is the days of Noah" not "as in the days of Noah". Jesus said specifically what elements would be similar between the days of Noah and the end of the age. None of those elements involved the Nephilim.
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Old 05-30-2018, 02:18 PM   #70
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I would agree with citing "the development of hierarchical authority" as an catalyst towards the formation of institutional Christianity. "The work of church fathers" was not institutional per se, but they were certainly influential in the formation of most of the seminal doctrines of the Christian faith. So I guess I would agree with your first proposition, but I would strongly disagree that the work of the church fathers had any negative affect. Even the doctrinal errors of some of the church fathers brought forth the opportunity for clarification and correction, and thus even the errors of some turned into great profit for all concerned.

As a personal observation, I have witnessed a great move in modern Church in general, and in Protestantism specifically, of a turning away from "institutional" Christianity. It's rather hard to define this as a "movement" because it has taken it's form or made it's influence in so many different arenas of the Christian church. All the way from the Catholic Charismatic Renewal and the Jesus Movement, to the resurgence of a decidedly creedal/reformed form of teaching/practice/worship. Much to the chagrin of our dear Local Church brothers and sisters, God has apparently chosen to do a "recovery" among those in "poor, poor Christianity" after all.

-
I would expect that strict Biblical Christians would find their "seminal doctrines" in the Bible without depending on subsequent developments. We'll have to take a closer look at the work of the so-called church fathers to see how true they are to New Testament teachings. Why are they called Church fathers in the first place? The church was already fathered wasn't it? What did they father? Could it be "Christianity"? Why do we ignore Jesus's plain teaching of Matthew 23:9 "do not call anyone on Earth your father; for one is your father, he who is in heaven."?

It's true that Church Christianity got squeezed through much of the 20th century. The mainline churches were criticized by the more conservative Christians as being too worldly on one side and by secular society for being too religious on the other. As a result their numbers declined. I agree with you that there have been vibrant recent developments in Biblical Christianity which Witness Lee's group missed out on because of their centralized top-down authoritarian system.
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Old 05-30-2018, 03:02 PM   #71
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What? This doesn't say that you will be persecuted in every city. It says that when that does happen move on because you will need to visit every city on earth before the Lord returns.

This is a great quote to disprove the idea that the NT teaches the Lord was going to come in the lifetime of the apostles.
You're misquoting Jesus. Matthew 10:23 says "when they persecute you in this city flee to another for assuredly I say to you, you will have not gone through the cities of Israel before the son of man comes." Not every city on earth but the cities of Israel. You're also ignoring the context. Jesus spoke these words to the 12 disciples when he sent them out to preach the kingdom. This is Jesus's specific teaching to the 12 disciples in that special situation not a general teaching for all believers for all time.
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Old 05-30-2018, 03:08 PM   #72
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That would be "it is the days of Noah" not "as in the days of Noah". Jesus said specifically what elements would be similar between the days of Noah and the end of the age. None of those elements involved the Nephilim.
Matt. 24:37 - As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

Are you saying there were no Nephilim in the days of Noah?
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Old 05-30-2018, 03:11 PM   #73
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Hardly. Jesus was nearly killed in his hometown for mentioning the Gentiles. The gospel only came to the Jews first, no verse indicates the gospel should stop with the Jews.
Mat_10:5* These twelve Jesus sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not:

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Paul said a Jew is one inwardly, and circumcision is of the heart and in the spirit.
Yes. Paul changed it.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:10 PM   #74
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Matt. 24:37 - As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be at the coming of the Son of Man.

Are you saying there were no Nephilim in the days of Noah?
36 But of that day and hour knoweth no one, not even the angels of heaven, [o]neither the Son, but the Father only. 37 And as were the days of Noah, so shall be the coming of the Son of man. 38 For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, 39 and they knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall be the coming of the Son of man.
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Old 05-30-2018, 06:17 PM   #75
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You're misquoting Jesus. Matthew 10:23 says "when they persecute you in this city flee to another for assuredly I say to you, you will have not gone through the cities of Israel before the son of man comes." Not every city on earth but the cities of Israel. You're also ignoring the context. Jesus spoke these words to the 12 disciples when he sent them out to preach the kingdom. This is Jesus's specific teaching to the 12 disciples in that special situation not a general teaching for all believers for all time.

The most compelling position, in this writer’s judgment, is that argued by numerous respectable scholars (e.g., J.W. McGarvey, Albert Barnes, F.F. Bruce, D.A. Carson, R.C.H. Lenski, Theodor Zahn, W.W. How, J. Barton Payne, etc.), namely that the “coming” event of Matthew 10:23 is the Roman invasion of Palestine, which occurred in A.D. 66-70.The following factors lend their weight to this view.

First, divine punishments are commonly referred to in the Bible as a “coming.”

(1) When Jehovah providentially sent the Babylonians to ravage the southern kingdom of Judah, Isaiah depicted the event as an invasion of the Lord himself (Isa. 13:2-5).

(2) Christ warned the erring churches of Ephesus and Pergamum that if they did not mend their rebellious ways, he would “come” and bring punishment upon them (Rev. 2:5, 16).

(3) God warned the Jews that he would send “his armies” to destroy those who murdered his Son, and cause their city to be burned (Mt. 22:7); this was to be accomplished by the Roman invasion.And it was represented as a “coming” of the Son of man in power and great glory (Mt. 24:30, 34; cf. Lk. 21:27, 32).For further consideration of this matter, see: “A Study of Matthew Twenty-Four”, elsewhere on this site.

Second, this event fits the “urgency” factor precisely.When the disciples were rejected by the Jews as they proclaimed the gospel, they were to flee from city to city in view of the coming destruction upon this dreadfully hateful nation.Even at that, they would not reach every city in Israel before the Roman “judgment” descended.

Third, there is the parallel evidence supporting this view.When one compares material from Matthew 10, with that found in Luke 21, it becomes apparent that, while the occasions are different, the same general theme is strikingly similar; there are unmistakably common elements in the Savior’s two warnings.
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Old 05-30-2018, 07:16 PM   #76
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36 But of that day and hour knoweth no one, not even the angels of heaven, [o]neither the Son, but the Father only. 37 And as were the days of Noah, so shall be the coming of the Son of man. 38 For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, 39 and they knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall be the coming of the Son of man.
Good quote. But the following quote indicates the flood, and thus Noah, was because of the offspring of the Sons of God, the Nephilim among them :

Gen 6:1 When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them,
Gen 6:2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose.
Gen 6:3 Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years."
Gen 6:4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.
Gen 6:5 The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Gen 6:6 And the LORD was sorry that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart.
Gen 6:7 So the LORD said, "I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them."
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Old 05-30-2018, 08:10 PM   #77
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The most compelling position, in this writer’s judgment, is that argued by numerous respectable scholars (e.g., J.W. McGarvey, Albert Barnes, F.F. Bruce, D.A. Carson, R.C.H. Lenski, Theodor Zahn, W.W. How, J. Barton Payne, etc.), namely that the “coming” event of Matthew 10:23 is the Roman invasion of Palestine, which occurred in A.D. 66-70.The following factors lend their weight to this view.

First, divine punishments are commonly referred to in the Bible as a “coming.”

(1) When Jehovah providentially sent the Babylonians to ravage the southern kingdom of Judah, Isaiah depicted the event as an invasion of the Lord himself (Isa. 13:2-5).

(2) Christ warned the erring churches of Ephesus and Pergamum that if they did not mend their rebellious ways, he would “come” and bring punishment upon them (Rev. 2:5, 16).

(3) God warned the Jews that he would send “his armies” to destroy those who murdered his Son, and cause their city to be burned (Mt. 22:7); this was to be accomplished by the Roman invasion.And it was represented as a “coming” of the Son of man in power and great glory (Mt. 24:30, 34; cf. Lk. 21:27, 32).For further consideration of this matter, see: “A Study of Matthew Twenty-Four”, elsewhere on this site.

Second, this event fits the “urgency” factor precisely.When the disciples were rejected by the Jews as they proclaimed the gospel, they were to flee from city to city in view of the coming destruction upon this dreadfully hateful nation.Even at that, they would not reach every city in Israel before the Roman “judgment” descended.

Third, there is the parallel evidence supporting this view.When one compares material from Matthew 10, with that found in Luke 21, it becomes apparent that, while the occasions are different, the same general theme is strikingly similar; there are unmistakably common elements in the Savior’s two warnings.
How strange that these "respected scholars" missed the obvious fact that Jesus' statement that "the Son of Man comes" in Matthew 10:23 matches Daniel 7:13 that states “And behold, One like the Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven!"
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:42 AM   #78
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How strange that these "respected scholars" missed the obvious fact that Jesus' statement that "the Son of Man comes" in Matthew 10:23 matches Daniel 7:13 that states “And behold, One like the Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven!"
Except it doesn't. He never says "coming with the clouds of heaven". All those harping about this verse like to believe the NT and the Lord Jesus are little simpletons who have a vocabulary of 3 words. He said "coming" so it must be the "coming with the clouds of heaven" and not the coming with the Armies of Rome.
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:45 AM   #79
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Good quote. But the following quote indicates the flood, and thus Noah, was because of the offspring of the Sons of God, the Nephilim among them :

Gen 6:1 When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them,
Gen 6:2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose.
Gen 6:3 Then the LORD said, "My Spirit shall not abide in man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years."
Gen 6:4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.
Gen 6:5 The LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.
Gen 6:6 And the LORD was sorry that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart.
Gen 6:7 So the LORD said, "I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them."
The Lord likened his death to the falling of a seed into the ground and dies then it resurrects and brings forth fruit. Using figurative speech like that is pointing out certain similarities. Interpreting that to mean that Jesus was some form of aberrant wheat grain indicates a poor education and not understanding the use of figurative language.
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Old 05-31-2018, 04:58 AM   #80
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How strange that these "respected scholars" missed the obvious fact that Jesus' statement that "the Son of Man comes" in Matthew 10:23 matches Daniel 7:13 that states “And behold, One like the Son of Man, coming with the clouds of heaven!"
9 It is thy destruction, O Israel, that thou art against me, against thy help.

When Israel was against the Lord He let them know it would be their destruction and He warned his disciples they wouldn't be able to fully evangelize the nation before they got spread to the four winds in the diaspora.

10 Where now is thy king, that he may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges, of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?

This is what they said when they said that Cesar was their king.

11 I have given thee a king in mine anger, and have taken him away in my wrath. 12 The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up; his sin is laid up in store. 13 The sorrows of a travailing woman shall come upon him: he is an unwise son; for it is time he should not tarry in the place of the breaking forth of children. 14 I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction? repentance shall be hid from mine eyes.

The Lord's crucifixion was a ransom from Sheol, from death. They had a chance to receive the Lord's ransom, but repentance was hid from their eyes. That is what the Lord is saying when He says you will not be able to go through all the cities till this judgement comes.

15 Though he be fruitful among his brethren, an east wind shall come, the breath of Jehovah coming up from the wilderness; and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall make spoil of the treasure of all goodly vessels. 16 Samaria shall bear her guilt; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword; their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.

When they demanded the crucifixion of Jesus they rebelled against God. That sealed their judgement. When the Romans came their "spring became dry" and their "treasure was spoiled". The Lord is simply reiterating this prophecy in Hosea. As He said earlier, every jot and tittle will be fulfilled. Matt 10:23 is not referring to Daniel but to Hosea 13:9-16. The breath of Jehovah is the Son of Man.
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:46 AM   #81
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The most compelling position, in this writer’s judgment, is that argued by numerous respectable scholars (e.g., J.W. McGarvey, Albert Barnes, F.F. Bruce, D.A. Carson, R.C.H. Lenski, Theodor Zahn, W.W. How, J. Barton Payne, etc.), namely that the “coming” event of Matthew 10:23 is the Roman invasion of Palestine, which occurred in A.D. 66-70.The following factors lend their weight to this view.

First, divine punishments are commonly referred to in the Bible as a “coming.”

(1) When Jehovah providentially sent the Babylonians to ravage the southern kingdom of Judah, Isaiah depicted the event as an invasion of the Lord himself (Isa. 13:2-5).

(2) Christ warned the erring churches of Ephesus and Pergamum that if they did not mend their rebellious ways, he would “come” and bring punishment upon them (Rev. 2:5, 16).

(3) God warned the Jews that he would send “his armies” to destroy those who murdered his Son, and cause their city to be burned (Mt. 22:7); this was to be accomplished by the Roman invasion.And it was represented as a “coming” of the Son of man in power and great glory (Mt. 24:30, 34; cf. Lk. 21:27, 32).For further consideration of this matter, see: “A Study of Matthew Twenty-Four”, elsewhere on this site.

Second, this event fits the “urgency” factor precisely.When the disciples were rejected by the Jews as they proclaimed the gospel, they were to flee from city to city in view of the coming destruction upon this dreadfully hateful nation.Even at that, they would not reach every city in Israel before the Roman “judgment” descended.

Third, there is the parallel evidence supporting this view.When one compares material from Matthew 10, with that found in Luke 21, it becomes apparent that, while the occasions are different, the same general theme is strikingly similar; there are unmistakably common elements in the Savior’s two warnings.
My, my, the lengths we'll go to, the hoops and loops we'll jump thru, to deny that Jesus could make a mistake, or didn't know everything.

He wasn't omniscient. He admitted that he didn't know the day and the hour. What else did he not know? After 2000 years, he clearly also didn't know the generation.

And II Peter didn't help with his a thousand years is as a day thingie. Calculating the lineage in the gospel called Matthew, Biblically speaking, a generation is around 43 years. 43 years times 365 days equals 15,695 days. According to whoever wrote II Peter that means 15,695 years. Thanks "Peter," but you didn't solve the "this generation problem." You made it worse.
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:56 AM   #82
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9 It is thy destruction, O Israel, that thou art against me, against thy help.

When Israel was against the Lord He let them know it would be their destruction and He warned his disciples they wouldn't be able to fully evangelize the nation before they got spread to the four winds in the diaspora.

10 Where now is thy king, that he may save thee in all thy cities? and thy judges, of whom thou saidst, Give me a king and princes?

This is what they said when they said that Cesar was their king.

11 I have given thee a king in mine anger, and have taken him away in my wrath. 12 The iniquity of Ephraim is bound up; his sin is laid up in store. 13 The sorrows of a travailing woman shall come upon him: he is an unwise son; for it is time he should not tarry in the place of the breaking forth of children. 14 I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction? repentance shall be hid from mine eyes.

The Lord's crucifixion was a ransom from Sheol, from death. They had a chance to receive the Lord's ransom, but repentance was hid from their eyes. That is what the Lord is saying when He says you will not be able to go through all the cities till this judgement comes.

15 Though he be fruitful among his brethren, an east wind shall come, the breath of Jehovah coming up from the wilderness; and his spring shall become dry, and his fountain shall be dried up: he shall make spoil of the treasure of all goodly vessels. 16 Samaria shall bear her guilt; for she hath rebelled against her God: they shall fall by the sword; their infants shall be dashed in pieces, and their women with child shall be ripped up.

When they demanded the crucifixion of Jesus they rebelled against God. That sealed their judgement. When the Romans came their "spring became dry" and their "treasure was spoiled". The Lord is simply reiterating this prophecy in Hosea. As He said earlier, every jot and tittle will be fulfilled. Matt 10:23 is not referring to Daniel but to Hosea 13:9-16. The breath of Jehovah is the Son of Man.
You seem to be trying to obfuscate the plain words of Jesus in Matthew 10:23 with many words. But you haven't given any reason why he could not have meant what he said-- that the son of man would return before his 12 disciples exhausted the cities of Israel.

The teaching that you espouse-- that the entire nation of Israel was held responsible for the sins of a few Jews in Jerusalem who colluded in the arrest and judgment against Jesus that led to his execution-- has been used to justify anti-Semitism and genocide against the Jews for centuries. That is indeed an element of the dark side of Christianity
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:24 AM   #83
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You seem to be trying to obfuscate the plain words of Jesus in Matthew 10:23 with many words. But you haven't given any reason why he could not have meant what he said-- that the son of man would return before his 12 disciples exhausted the cities of Israel.

The teaching that you espouse-- that the entire nation of Israel was held responsible for the sins of a few Jews in Jerusalem who colluded in the arrest and judgment against Jesus that led to his execution-- has been used to justify anti-Semitism and genocide against the Jews for centuries. That is indeed an element of the dark side of Christianity
You are trying to interpret the words of Jesus with a blunt instrument. He didn't say the Son of Man would return, He said "the coming of the Son of Man".

There are numerous prophesies concerning the coming of the Son of Man, the coming of the Lord, the Coming of Jehovah, the coming of the breath of Jehovah.

It is very obvious that they are not all referring to the same coming. If they were why would He say "coming with the clouds" if not to distinguish this coming from the coming that is not with the clouds?
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:37 AM   #84
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My, my, the lengths we'll go to, the hoops and loops we'll jump thru, to deny that Jesus could make a mistake, or didn't know everything.
Good try. My post was a quote from quite a few Bible scholars. It is standard Bible commentary on these verses.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:47 AM   #85
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You are trying to interpret the words of Jesus with a blunt instrument
I don't know but that might be better than putting it on a torture rack, to make it say what you want it to say.

And when Jesus mentioned "coming" maybe he meant he'd show up the next day ... maybe "coming again" to the sea of Galilee ... on a clear day, with no clouds.

See what that torture rack can accomplish?
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Old 05-31-2018, 09:58 AM   #86
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I don't know but that might be better than putting it on a torture rack, to make it say what you want it to say.

And when Jesus mentioned "coming" maybe he meant he'd show up the next day ... maybe "coming again" to the sea of Galilee ... on a clear day, with no clouds.

See what that torture rack can accomplish?
You don't need any contortion to compare Matt 10 with Hosea 13. It is a round peg going into a round hole. Nor does it take any special myopic vision to see the coming Romans as God's judgement on the Jews for rejecting the Son of God. Jesus, Paul and the prophets were all quite clear on this point.

But what does defy many, many verses, what does require extreme myopic vision and contortionism is to suggest Jesus would return to Israel before their redemption.

Let's talk about the "torture rack" you are putting the Bible on. Why would anyone say "it is the red volkswagen" if you are talking about the only car in parking lot? The fact that you are giving terms like "red" and "volkswagen" suggest there are other cars. Likewise "coming with the clouds" would be completely redundant if there were only one coming. But there isn't, there are many comings of the Lord, coming judgements, coming blessings. It takes someone with a Phd in torture, someone who can cram 20 people into a volkswagen bug, to cram every coming into the Lord's coming in the clouds.

But I understand why they would do it. "Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks". If your agenda is to discredit the Lord of All you have to. Otherwise the alternative is to admit he could see the coming Roman invasion. He knew the time frame and he knew how long it would take his disciples to preach the gospel of redemption in Israel.

Here are some significant points of comparison [between Matt 10 and Luke 21].

(1) Both texts warn of an impending time of terrible persecution for the Lord’s disciples (Mt. 10:16; Lk. 21:12).

(2) Both passages affirm that persecution will come from the Jewish leaders, who will beat the Lord’s followers, even in their synagogues (Mt. 10:17; Lk. 21:12).

(3) Both texts declare that the disciples would be brought before governors and kings for the Savior’s sake (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:12).

(4) Both sections affirm that the disciples’ courage under persecution would turn out to be a compelling “testimony” in the interests of others (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:13).

(5) Both contexts declare that when the disciples are called upon to defend their case, they are not to be anxious about responding. Indeed, they are not to even think about preparation, for the appropriate words will be given to them by the Holy Spirit at the needed hour (Mt. 10:19-20; Lk. 21:14-15).

(6) Both texts warn that the coming crisis will be so great that even family members will yield to the temptation of delivering their loved ones over to the persecuting authorities (Mt. 10:21; Lk. 21:16).

(7) Both segments announce that the disciples will be hated by all men on account of Jesus’ sake (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:17).

(8) Both passages encourage endurance or patience, for deliverance will come eventually; there will be a “saving” or “redemption” for the Lord’s faithful (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:19).

(9) Both sections encourage the disciples that when the danger becomes life-threatening, they are to take flight (Mt. 10:23; Lk. 21:21f).

With these obvious parallels in mind, we now are ready to focus upon Matthew’s mysterious phrase, “till the Son of man comes” (10:23).The conscientious student asks: “What is the most likely meaning of this obscure phrase?”Luke’s conclusion is perfectly clear (and quite analogous to Matthew 24); Jerusalem will be surrounded by armies (the Romans) that will desolate the once-sacred city.Many Hebrews will fall by the sword; others will be taken captive.The revered city will be trodden down permanently (Lk. 21:20ff).There is no question.The destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70 is clearly the focus of this text.

In conclusion, let us remind ourselves of this well-known principle of biblical interpretation.When there are Scripture texts that treat the same general theme, and yet one passage is more obscure than the other, the more enigmatic text always is to be interpreted in the light of the clearer.

If we apply this principle to the situation at hand, it is reasonable to conclude that the phrase “till the Son of man comes” represents a “judgment” coming of the Savior upon the nation of Israel and the city of Jerusalem.It was a just punishment for their culminating act rebellion in rejecting their Messiah, the Son of God.
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Old 05-31-2018, 10:49 AM   #87
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The teaching that you espouse-- that the entire nation of Israel was held responsible for the sins of a few Jews in Jerusalem who colluded in the arrest and judgment against Jesus that led to his execution-- has been used to justify anti-Semitism and genocide against the Jews for centuries. That is indeed an element of the dark side of Christianity
This is little different than the policy of liberal "identity politics" -- all white men today should bear white shame and white guilt for the sins of a few slaveholders during the Lincoln Presidency and before. How can a liberal white man live with himself?
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Old 05-31-2018, 11:21 AM   #88
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This is little different than the policy of liberal "identity politics" -- all white men today should bear white shame and white guilt for the sins of a few slaveholders during the Lincoln Presidency and before. How can a liberal white man live with himself?
.
75% of Southern Whites did not own any slaves. Of the 25% that did, less than 5% owned a significant number (plantation owners -- the type we see in the movies). It is less likely that the slave owners with one or two slaves were as abusive since that requires manpower they didn't have.

The South represented less than 40% of US population, therefore when looking at the US as a whole only 2% of whites represented Southern Plantation owners with a lot of slaves.

But, there was still guilt to go around and our "redemption" took place during the Civil War. It seems outrageous to me that a person in your family could die fighting to free slaves and people are still claiming guilt and shame. The civil War was very expensive in both lives and money and it was undeniably fought to free slaves. Yes, both sides tried to deny it initially because Northerners were more interested in "preserving the union" and Southerners were not interested in helping the 5% but rather were fighting to protect their freedom. The hypocrisy of the South was on display because they soon took away all of the rights of the citizens to prosecute the war, proving that it was not about individual rights but rather they would pay any cost to keep their slaves.
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Old 05-31-2018, 11:24 AM   #89
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The teaching that you espouse-- that the entire nation of Israel was held responsible for the sins of a few Jews in Jerusalem who colluded in the arrest and judgment against Jesus that led to his execution-- has been used to justify anti-Semitism and genocide against the Jews for centuries. That is indeed an element of the dark side of Christianity
That is historically accurate. However, since I also espouse that the Holocaust was their atonement with God, hence their return to Israel after WWII my use of this cannot be used to justify anti semitism after 1948. Therefore my teaching is not and cannot be construed anti semitic.

Nor do I justify the anti semitism prior to WWII because the Jews are God's people, what happens between them and God is their business, not mine.

Finally, since my Mother is probably of Jewish descent I think it is absurd to be anti Jewish (My great grandfather on my Mom's side escaped from a Turkish slave ship, changed his name and fled to MO. Our best guess is that he was Jewish and probably had to kill someone to escape, hence the change of name and the hiding out in the midwest).
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Old 05-31-2018, 12:11 PM   #90
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it is reasonable to conclude that the phrase “till the Son of man comes” represents a “judgment” coming of the Savior upon the nation of Israel and the city of Jerusalem.It was a just punishment for their culminating act rebellion in rejecting their Messiah, the Son of God.[/COLOR]
Well isn't that just like the God of the Old Testament? Who punishes a mass of the innocent for the guilt of a few?

And I'm suppose to love that God? John, or whoever, got it wrong when he said "God is love." He's more a God of fear.

But thanks for another example of putting the Bible on a torture rack, by linking verses in Matthew to Hosea ; a book comparing Israel’s abandonment of Yahweh to a woman being unfaithful to her husband, saying Israel abandoned the law, and about the fall of Israel in the 8th c. BC.

By dragging that book into the siege of Jerusalem in the 1st c. AD. you've provided a quintessential example of putting the Bible on a torture rack, to make it say what you want it to say.
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Old 05-31-2018, 12:46 PM   #91
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But thanks for another example of putting the Bible on a torture rack, by linking verses in Matthew to Hosea ; a book comparing Israel’s abandonment of Yahweh to a woman being unfaithful to her husband, saying Israel abandoned the law, and about the fall of Israel in the 8th c. BC.

By dragging that book into the siege of Jerusalem in the 1st c. AD. you've provided a quintessential example of putting the Bible on a torture rack, to make it say what you want it to say.
What hypocrisy. Zeek used the book of Daniel to make it say what he wanted it to say simply because it said "the coming of the Son of Man" -- but the prophecy in Daniel bears almost no relation to the portion in Matt 10 whereas the portion in Hosea also referring to the "coming of the breath of Jehovah" is a far better fit. If anyone was trying to jam Cinderella's slipper on a big fat foot, it was you and Zeek.

There is an excellent comparison between Matt 10 and Luke 21,

(1) Both texts warn of an impending time of terrible persecution for the Lord’s disciples (Mt. 10:16; Lk. 21:12).

(2) Both passages affirm that persecution will come from the Jewish leaders, who will beat the Lord’s followers, even in their synagogues (Mt. 10:17; Lk. 21:12).

(3) Both texts declare that the disciples would be brought before governors and kings for the Savior’s sake (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:12).

(4) Both sections affirm that the disciples’ courage under persecution would turn out to be a compelling “testimony” in the interests of others (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:13).

(5) Both contexts declare that when the disciples are called upon to defend their case, they are not to be anxious about responding. Indeed, they are not to even think about preparation, for the appropriate words will be given to them by the Holy Spirit at the needed hour (Mt. 10:19-20; Lk. 21:14-15).

(6) Both texts warn that the coming crisis will be so great that even family members will yield to the temptation of delivering their loved ones over to the persecuting authorities (Mt. 10:21; Lk. 21:16).

(7) Both segments announce that the disciples will be hated by all men on account of Jesus’ sake (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:17).

(8) Both passages encourage endurance or patience, for deliverance will come eventually; there will be a “saving” or “redemption” for the Lord’s faithful (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:19).

(9) Both sections encourage the disciples that when the danger becomes life-threatening, they are to take flight (Mt. 10:23; Lk. 21:21f).

Anyone who compares these two passages would see far better agreement than the fig leaf you are trying to wrap around your poor interpretation. If you do compare these two you have no choice but to agree that this refers to armies surrounding Jerusalem after the Lord's crucifixion.

There is nothing honest in your interpretation, it is simply someone desperate to cling to some little thread that proves his theory, rather than someone who is unbiased and looking reasonably at the facts.
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Old 05-31-2018, 12:54 PM   #92
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Well isn't that just like the God of the Old Testament? Who punishes a mass of the innocent for the guilt of a few?
What an ugly interpretation of Hosea. According to the prophecy in Hosea the Jews will reject their king (not simply the few who condemned Him to death). What they don't know is that their coming destruction will only be averted by someone who can see the rocks and steer the ship away from them. When they reject Jesus as captain of their ship they doom themselves to crashing on the rocks and sinking their little country and losing everything.

That is what captains do, they steer ships. If you pick a self serving captain who is clueless about the dangers but is only good at lying then you have no one but yourself to blame when your ship ends up on the rocks.

Now if God had not warned them ahead of time that might be a cause of being upset, but He did warn them. If Jesus had not reminded them when they rejected Him of the perils one might still find fault, but Jesus did remind them.

If God did not honor their free will in either choosing or rejecting Jesus you might still find fault, but God did honor their free will.

Instead nothing but hypocrisy and the ugliness of someone not willing to be accountable for their own actions.
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Old 05-31-2018, 01:07 PM   #93
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75% of Southern Whites did not own any slaves. Of the 25% that did, less than 5% owned a significant number (plantation owners -- the type we see in the movies). It is less likely that the slave owners with one or two slaves were as abusive since that requires manpower they didn't have.

The South represented less than 40% of US population, therefore when looking at the US as a whole only 2% of whites represented Southern Plantation owners with a lot of slaves.

But, there was still guilt to go around and our "redemption" took place during the Civil War. It seems outrageous to me that a person in your family could die fighting to free slaves and people are still claiming guilt and shame. The civil War was very expensive in both lives and money and it was undeniably fought to free slaves. Yes, both sides tried to deny it initially because Northerners were more interested in "preserving the union" and Southerners were not interested in helping the 5% but rather were fighting to protect their freedom. The hypocrisy of the South was on display because they soon took away all of the rights of the citizens to prosecute the war, proving that it was not about individual rights but rather they would pay any cost to keep their slaves.
I would only add that it was the Democratic (both the North and the South) Party which resisted emancipation.

I would never take the blame for anything the Democrats have done!
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Old 05-31-2018, 01:20 PM   #94
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I would only add that it was the Democratic (both the North and the South) Party which resisted emancipation.

I would never take the blame for anything the Democrats have done!
Only the most radical Republicans were for emancipation prior to the war. As more and more people were killed many of the Northerners supported emancipation as a way to punish the South. Emancipation was also seen as a strategic way to weaken the South's ability to fight. So I would not give the moral high ground to the Republicans.
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Old 05-31-2018, 06:36 PM   #95
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What an ugly interpretation of Hosea. According to the prophecy in Hosea the Jews will reject their king (not simply the few who condemned Him to death). What they don't know is that their coming destruction will only be averted by someone who can see the rocks and steer the ship away from them. When they reject Jesus as captain of their ship they doom themselves to crashing on the rocks and sinking their little country and losing everything.

That is what captains do, they steer ships. If you pick a self serving captain who is clueless about the dangers but is only good at lying then you have no one but yourself to blame when your ship ends up on the rocks.

Now if God had not warned them ahead of time that might be a cause of being upset, but He did warn them. If Jesus had not reminded them when they rejected Him of the perils one might still find fault, but Jesus did remind them.

If God did not honor their free will in either choosing or rejecting Jesus you might still find fault, but God did honor their free will.

Instead nothing but hypocrisy and the ugliness of someone not willing to be accountable for their own actions.
Thanks for heads up about boat captains. I didn't know that.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:13 PM   #96
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I would only add that it was the Democratic (both the North and the South) Party which resisted emancipation.

I would never take the blame for anything the Democrats have done!
Obama, Hillary, and the democrats killed Jesus. And today they're coming in the clouds.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:33 PM   #97
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Paul tells the Romans :

"The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet."

Did that happen? Was that when Constantine made Rome the state religion?

Relatively, that's soon.
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Old 05-31-2018, 07:59 PM   #98
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Obama, Hillary, and the democrats killed Jesus. And today they're coming in the clouds.
Makes a lot of sense.

Featured Post maybe?
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Old 05-31-2018, 08:02 PM   #99
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Only the most radical Republicans were for emancipation prior to the war. As more and more people were killed many of the Northerners supported emancipation as a way to punish the South. Emancipation was also seen as a strategic way to weaken the South's ability to fight. So I would not give the moral high ground to the Republicans.
Twist the facts to make the innocent look bad?

You have been trained well.
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Old 06-01-2018, 04:53 AM   #100
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Twist the facts to make the innocent look bad?

You have been trained well.
I haven't twisted anything. Look at Lincoln's platform. We know that he personally would have liked to eliminate slavery but he didn't run on that. Claiming that Lincoln was elected president to end slavery or that Northerners enlisted to end slavery is a complete fabrication. The people who were running to end slavery were fringe candidates.

I like to know the facts in history, it helps me sort out the present.

The North wanted to pretend the Civil War was about "preserving the Union" and not about ending slavery. The South wanted to pretend the war was about "State's rights" and not about protecting slavery. But when push came to shove the South had a federal draft (contrary to their claim of State's rights and liberty), they forced a tax down everyone's throat, they made people use their paper money which they then inflated, another tax. Likewise, in the North when they couldn't win a victory for the first two years they began to see that freeing slaves could help them in the war effort. But they didn't emancipate them, they simply said that runaway slaves would not be returned. Only later after atrocities against black soldiers and the realization that having runaway slaves in limbo was not conducive to their goals did they realize they needed to emancipate the slaves.

Remember, the Gettysburg address was not a campaign speech, it took place 2 years into the war.
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:08 AM   #101
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You are trying to interpret the words of Jesus with a blunt instrument. He didn't say the Son of Man would return, He said "the coming of the Son of Man".

There are numerous prophesies concerning the coming of the Son of Man, the coming of the Lord, the Coming of Jehovah, the coming of the breath of Jehovah.

It is very obvious that they are not all referring to the same coming. If they were why would He say "coming with the clouds" if not to distinguish this coming from the coming that is not with the clouds?
Thanks for "he didn't say the son of man would return He said the coming of the son of man. That one made me laugh out loud. Tell me the truth ZNP, do you not see that those are two different ways of saying the same thing?

Matthew 10:23 doesn't say anything about the coming of Jehovah or the breath of Jehovah. It's true that Jesus does not mention the clouds of heaven in Matthew 10:23. But he doesn't mention them in Matthew 13 41 either. There he says " the son of man will send out his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom all things that offend and those who practice lawlessness." Do you suppose he's talking about the Roman army there?

In Matthew 16:27 he says "for the son of man will come in the glory of his father with his angels and then he will reward each according to his works". No mention of clouds there either. In the following verse Jesus says "Assuredly I say to you there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the son of man coming in his kingdom. Still no clouds.

So it's well established that Jesus can refer to the coming of the son of man to establish his kingdom without reference to clouds.
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:21 AM   #102
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This is little different than the policy of liberal "identity politics" -- all white men today should bear white shame and white guilt for the sins of a few slaveholders during the Lincoln Presidency and before. How can a liberal white man live with himself?
If you're saying that it's wrong to hold all Jews responsible for the collusion of a few Jews with the Romans in the execution of Jesus circa 30 AD, then we agree.
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:56 AM   #103
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Thanks for "he didn't say the son of man would return He said the coming of the son of man. That one made me laugh out loud. Tell me the truth ZNP, do you not see that those are two different ways of saying the same thing?

Matthew 10:23 doesn't say anything about the coming of Jehovah or the breath of Jehovah. It's true that Jesus does not mention the clouds of heaven in Matthew 10:23. But he doesn't mention them in Matthew 13 41 either. There he says " the son of man will send out his angels and they will gather out of his kingdom all things that offend and those who practice lawlessness." Do you suppose he's talking about the Roman army there?

In Matthew 16:27 he says "for the son of man will come in the glory of his father with his angels and then he will reward each according to his works". No mention of clouds there either. In the following verse Jesus says "Assuredly I say to you there are some standing here who will not who shall not taste death till they see the son of man coming in his kingdom. Still no clouds.

So it's well established that Jesus can refer to the coming of the son of man to establish his kingdom without reference to clouds.
You have not responded to any of my points. Saying that "it doesn't say coming in the clouds" is pointing out that you need more than "coming of the Son of Man" to tie this to the second coming. Obviously that is one possible theory, but tying Matt 10 to Luke 21 is far more compelling. Why are you avoiding that interpretation? Because surely you would agree that "armies surrounding Jerusalem" in Luke 21 could very well refer to the period when Jerusalem fell and the disciples were scattered.

In my view the fall of Jerusalem was a foretaste of the end of this age. It begins and ends with this. So without a doubt I think there are some interesting correlations with this the fall of Jerusalem after the crucifixion and then the end of the Age and Armageddon.

In Matt 24 Jesus said: 14 And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a testimony unto all the nations; and then shall the end come.. Now this to my understanding clearly refutes your interpretation. He tells them that they won't finish preaching in Israel before the coming of the Son of Man, and here he says that the gospel will be preached to the whole world and all the nations before the end comes. Same book, same author, both attributed to Jesus.

Your interpretation is based on a single verse and doesn't even look slightly further which is why I say it is myopic. I could go on, but no point, you haven't responded to anything I have said yet.
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:31 AM   #104
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That is historically accurate. However, since I also espouse that the Holocaust was their atonement with God, hence their return to Israel after WWII my use of this cannot be used to justify anti semitism after 1948. Therefore my teaching is not and cannot be construed anti semitic.

Nor do I justify the anti semitism prior to WWII because the Jews are God's people, what happens between them and God is their business, not mine.

Finally, since my Mother is probably of Jewish descent I think it is absurd to be anti Jewish (My great grandfather on my Mom's side escaped from a Turkish slave ship, changed his name and fled to MO. Our best guess is that he was Jewish and probably had to kill someone to escape, hence the change of name and the hiding out in the midwest).
This is a deep and difficult topic that gets into the philosophy of history, the overarching narrative of the New Testament in the Bible and even the theological problem of evil. What you're doing is interpreting history in terms of Christian biblical eschatology.

I haven't accused you of anti-semitism, so there is no need to defend yourself against such charge here. That said your argument that you're not an anti-semite because you may have Jewish descendants reminds me of the "friend" argument e.g. "some of my best friends are Jews". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaGdwfykYGY
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:39 AM   #105
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Because surely you would agree that "armies surrounding Jerusalem" in Luke 21 could very well refer to the period when Jerusalem fell and the disciples were scattered.
What's missing in your theory is the fact that books written after AD 70 don't mention the sacking of Jerusalem. Your verses only hint at it, but with no specificity.

If the sacking of the temple was the fulfillment of prophecy, then why isn't it spelled out?
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:46 AM   #106
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This is a deep and difficult topic that gets into the philosophy of history, the overarching narrative of the New Testament in the Bible and even the theological problem of evil. What you're doing is interpreting history in terms of Christian biblical eschatology.

I haven't accused you of anti-semitism, so there is no need to defend yourself against such charge here. That said your argument that you're not an anti-semite because you may have Jewish descendants reminds me of the "friend" argument e.g. "some of my best friends are Jews". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YaGdwfykYGY
My best friend growing up was Jewish, and I spent a lot of time at the synagogue and on holidays like passover. I considered converting to Judaism before being saved. I named my son after David Ben Gurion. I could go on.
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:48 AM   #107
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What's missing in your theory is the fact that books written after AD 70 don't mention the sacking of Jerusalem. Your verses only hint at it, but with no specificity.

If the sacking of the temple was the fulfillment of prophecy, then why isn't it spelled out?
You mean by more than "no stone left upon another".

Are you referring to historical accounts like Josephus? Now I have seen numerous pictures of the Temple mount and there is "no stone left upon the other" if you are talking about the Temple. All they have left is the wailing wall which was part of the complex but not the actual temple.
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:06 AM   #108
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You mean by more than "no stone left upon another".
Good catch, of a vaticinium ex eventu.

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Now I have seen numerous pictures of the Temple mount and there is "no stone left upon the other" if you are talking about the Temple. All they have left is the wailing wall which was part of the complex but not the actual temple.
You forgot about Mark :

Mar 13:2* And Jesus answering said unto him, Seest thou these great buildings? there shall not be left one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
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Old 06-01-2018, 11:48 AM   #109
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What's missing in your theory is the fact that books written after AD 70 don't mention the sacking of Jerusalem.
What are you talking about? I can get multiple references to Titus destruction of Jerusalem and the Roman Senate commemorating that destruction with an Arch which was built in AD 81.
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Old 06-01-2018, 05:59 PM   #110
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What hypocrisy. Zeek used the book of Daniel to make it say what he wanted it to say simply because it said "the coming of the Son of Man" -- but the prophecy in Daniel bears almost no relation to the portion in Matt 10 whereas the portion in Hosea also referring to the "coming of the breath of Jehovah" is a far better fit. If anyone was trying to jam Cinderella's slipper on a big fat foot, it was you and Zeek.

There is an excellent comparison between Matt 10 and Luke 21,

(1) Both texts warn of an impending time of terrible persecution for the Lord’s disciples (Mt. 10:16; Lk. 21:12).

(2) Both passages affirm that persecution will come from the Jewish leaders, who will beat the Lord’s followers, even in their synagogues (Mt. 10:17; Lk. 21:12).

(3) Both texts declare that the disciples would be brought before governors and kings for the Savior’s sake (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:12).

(4) Both sections affirm that the disciples’ courage under persecution would turn out to be a compelling “testimony” in the interests of others (Mt. 10:18; Lk. 21:13).

(5) Both contexts declare that when the disciples are called upon to defend their case, they are not to be anxious about responding. Indeed, they are not to even think about preparation, for the appropriate words will be given to them by the Holy Spirit at the needed hour (Mt. 10:19-20; Lk. 21:14-15).

(6) Both texts warn that the coming crisis will be so great that even family members will yield to the temptation of delivering their loved ones over to the persecuting authorities (Mt. 10:21; Lk. 21:16).

(7) Both segments announce that the disciples will be hated by all men on account of Jesus’ sake (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:17).

(8) Both passages encourage endurance or patience, for deliverance will come eventually; there will be a “saving” or “redemption” for the Lord’s faithful (Mt. 10:22; Lk. 21:19).

(9) Both sections encourage the disciples that when the danger becomes life-threatening, they are to take flight (Mt. 10:23; Lk. 21:21f).

Anyone who compares these two passages would see far better agreement than the fig leaf you are trying to wrap around your poor interpretation. If you do compare these two you have no choice but to agree that this refers to armies surrounding Jerusalem after the Lord's crucifixion.

There is nothing honest in your interpretation, it is simply someone desperate to cling to some little thread that proves his theory, rather than someone who is unbiased and looking reasonably at the facts.
You claim that I used the Book of Daniel to make it say what I wanted it to say simply because it said the coming of the son of man but the prophecy in Daniel bears almost no relation to the portion in Matthew 10.

First let's take a look at what I actually said. I quoted Matthew 10:23 which says " when they persecute you in this city flee to another for assuredly I say to you, you will not have gone through the cities of Israel before the son of man comes." I said not only did the son of man not come as predicted in Daniel the disciples were not persecuted so that they had to flee from one city to the other.

I was taking implicit note of the fact that Jesus was speaking to his 12 disciples upon sending them to minister throughout Galilee. I was interpreting the passage literally.

You asserted that the verse referred to going through every city on earth. I corrected you and said it referred only to the cities of Israel.

At that point you brought in the respected scholars. In the passage you quoted they interpreted the coming of the son of man as referring to God sending the Roman armies to invade Palestine. Yet they provided no explanation for why Jesus used the expression son of man in this verse. It's an expression that Jesus uses 32 times in the Book of Matthew.

I noted that Jesus' use of the term the son of man comes in Matthew 10:23 matches Daniel 7:13 that says and behold one like the son of man coming with the Clouds Of Heaven. You said that it didn't correspond with that

I pointed to other verses in Matthew where are Jesus uses the term son of man referring to the coming Kingdom and does not mention clouds.

I don't see anywhere where I'm torturing the verse to make it say what I want it to say. And I don't know how you can possibly contend that the verse which mentions the son of man in Daniel "bears almost no relation" to Jesus' use of the son of man in Matthew.

Now you wish to compare Matthew 10 with Luke 21. I do see similarities between the two passages. But Luke 21 culminates in the coming of the son of man in a cloud with power and great Glory.

Jesus was speaking publicly in the temple. This passage also seems to support the conclusion that Jesus expected the coming of the son of man to those people.

The surrounding armies were supposed to be a sign that desolation was near. Jesus said that that sign comes before the coming of the son of man in a cloud with power and great glory.

Jesus told them that when these things happened they should look up and lift up their heads. What were they going to see when they looked up? The Roman army? I don't think so.

I think Jesus expected them to see the son of man coming on the clouds when they looked up. He even said when those things happen their redemption was drawing near. Doesn't that refer to the redemption of their bodies-- their transfiguration at the coming of the son of man? The Roman army wasn't going to redeem them was it?
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:31 PM   #111
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My best friend growing up was Jewish, and I spent a lot of time at the synagogue and on holidays like passover. I considered converting to Judaism before being saved. I named my son after David Ben Gurion. I could go on.
That's nice but it's irrelevant. And the "friend argument' e.g. "I can't be a jew-hater because some of my best friends are Jews or my family members are Jews", is fallacious. It's based on the presupposition that if you're close to someone you can't wish to do them harm which is false. People murder friends and family members every day.
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:45 PM   #112
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If people reject Christianity the way Witness Lee did it would make more sense if they didn't call themselves Christians which is obviously the root of the word. They could recover the word Nazratim or, as it is usually translated Nazarene, the name the followers of Jesus were called in Jerusalem according to Acts 24:5.
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Old 06-01-2018, 07:42 PM   #113
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In response to post #110.

Matt 10:23 refers to the coming of the Son of Man before the apostles are able to go through the cities of Israel preaching the gospel. The sense I get from this chapter is that the Lord is telling the apostles to be urgent because they will run out of time.

All the commentaries on this passage see this expression "the coming of the Son of Man" as a point that needs quite a bit of consideration. Obviously you are immediately reminded of the Lord Jesus coming in the Clouds at the end of the age.

However, in Matt 24 the Lord is very clear that many things will happen and "the end is not yet" and He also tells us that we will preach the gospel throughout the entire world and to all the nations and then the end will come.

It is an erroneous practice to interpret the Bible based on a single verse.

So, you have to reconcile both Matt 10 which is very clear that the apostles will run out of time prior to the "coming of the Son of Man" and will not be able to go through all the cities of Israel before that point. And on the other hand there will be wars, rumors of wars, nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, and this is only the beginning of tribulation, the end is not yet. Instead, this gospel of the kingdom will be preached to the entire world and to all the nations. Only then will "the end come". There is no suggestion in Matt 24 that it will be the apostles preaching to all the nations, rather it is "this gospel of the kingdom will be preached".

So regardless of how appealing it is to suggest that Matt 10 is referring to "the end of the age" we know it isn't. Instead if we look at Luke 21 there is a very strong correlation between these two portions that suggest it is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. This destruction of the temple is also spelled out in Matt 24. This also corresponds with the historical record. During the ministry of the apostles the Jews were scattered abroad, both Peter and James refer to this.

So then Matt 10, Matt 24, Luke 21, and the historical record all fit very nicely together leaving us one last question. What does this term "the coming of the Son of Man" refer to?

In my opinion Hosea 13 is instructive here.

v.5 "besides me there is no savior" however Israel has forgotten Him.

v. 9 "it is thy destruction O Israel that you are against Me, your help".

They rejected Jesus as savior, and that is to their destruction. He reminds us that He gave us King Saul in His anger and then took him away in His wrath. Israel's rejecting God and demanding to have a king set over them was a prefigure of their rejection of Jesus Christ as their savior and king.

v. 14 "I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction?"

This is the redemptive work of Jesus, only He can save them, and yet they rejected this and chose "Cesar to be their king". And Hosea says "the sorrows of a travailing woman will come upon him, he is an unwise son".

Finally an "east wind will come". If you live in Israel and east wind would be coming from across the Middle East, a hot, dry wind, a drought. We saw this, Israel as a nation dried up. "the breath of Jehovah coming up from the wilderness" that this will be the judgement of God because they rebelled. The conclusion of this chapter in Hosea is clearly referring to an army destroying the land "fall by the sword", "ripped up" and "dashed in pieces".

I think this prophecy is very well aligned to this period in time from the Lord's crucifixion to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. Therefore "The breath of Jehovah coming up" would be equivalent to "the coming of the Son of Man".
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:07 PM   #114
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In response to post #110.

Matt 10:23 refers to the coming of the Son of Man before the apostles are able to go through the cities of Israel preaching the gospel. The sense I get from this chapter is that the Lord is telling the apostles to be urgent because they will run out of time.

All the commentaries on this passage see this expression "the coming of the Son of Man" as a point that needs quite a bit of consideration. Obviously you are immediately reminded of the Lord Jesus coming in the Clouds at the end of the age.

However, in Matt 24 the Lord is very clear that many things will happen and "the end is not yet" and He also tells us that we will preach the gospel throughout the entire world and to all the nations and then the end will come.

It is an erroneous practice to interpret the Bible based on a single verse.

So, you have to reconcile both Matt 10 which is very clear that the apostles will run out of time prior to the "coming of the Son of Man" and will not be able to go through all the cities of Israel before that point. And on the other hand there will be wars, rumors of wars, nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, and this is only the beginning of tribulation, the end is not yet. Instead, this gospel of the kingdom will be preached to the entire world and to all the nations. Only then will "the end come". There is no suggestion in Matt 24 that it will be the apostles preaching to all the nations, rather it is "this gospel of the kingdom will be preached".

So regardless of how appealing it is to suggest that Matt 10 is referring to "the end of the age" we know it isn't. Instead if we look at Luke 21 there is a very strong correlation between these two portions that suggest it is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. This destruction of the temple is also spelled out in Matt 24. This also corresponds with the historical record. During the ministry of the apostles the Jews were scattered abroad, both Peter and James refer to this.

So then Matt 10, Matt 24, Luke 21, and the historical record all fit very nicely together leaving us one last question. What does this term "the coming of the Son of Man" refer to?

In my opinion Hosea 13 is instructive here.

v.5 "besides me there is no savior" however Israel has forgotten Him.

v. 9 "it is thy destruction O Israel that you are against Me, your help".

They rejected Jesus as savior, and that is to their destruction. He reminds us that He gave us King Saul in His anger and then took him away in His wrath. Israel's rejecting God and demanding to have a king set over them was a prefigure of their rejection of Jesus Christ as their savior and king.

v. 14 "I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction?"

This is the redemptive work of Jesus, only He can save them, and yet they rejected this and chose "Cesar to be their king". And Hosea says "the sorrows of a travailing woman will come upon him, he is an unwise son".

Finally an "east wind will come". If you live in Israel and east wind would be coming from across the Middle East, a hot, dry wind, a drought. We saw this, Israel as a nation dried up. "the breath of Jehovah coming up from the wilderness" that this will be the judgement of God because they rebelled. The conclusion of this chapter in Hosea is clearly referring to an army destroying the land "fall by the sword", "ripped up" and "dashed in pieces".

I think this prophecy is very well aligned to this period in time from the Lord's crucifixion to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. Therefore "The breath of Jehovah coming up" would be equivalent to "the coming of the Son of Man".
Jesus told the people in Jerusalem that when the armies surrounded Jerusalem the son of man would appear in the clouds so they should look up. Jerusalem was destroyed as you say but when they looked up the son of man did not appear in the clouds. As a result there was a shift in the eschatology away from the return of Jesus to establish his kingdom to the church on earth as an enduring institution and the destination of heaven for the individual believer at the end of life. This shift is already evident in the Gospel of John which de-emphasizes the Apocalypse in favor of a realized eschatology.
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:56 PM   #115
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What are you talking about? I can get multiple references to Titus destruction of Jerusalem and the Roman Senate commemorating that destruction with an Arch which was built in AD 81.
Bro Z, think about it. It's not that there aren't historical records on the sacking of Jerusalem & the temple. It was a very big deal ; a big war ; that the Romans won ; and the Jews lost ; and they don't have their temple to this day. .

So you'd think it would be remarked about in New Testament accounts. For instance, John was written 25 years after the sacking, surely the authors knew about it. So why isn't it written about at least in some detail?

Another instance : Matthew, the only gospel that mentions it, have the Jews saying, "his blood be on us and our children." Shouldn't Matthew have mentioned the sacking of the temple -- it meant that his blood was upon them -- that deserved at least some detailed account -- at least something clearly stated about it fulfilling Jesus' prophecy?

But okay, we can't expect the New Testament to be a historical type document. But still. The sacking of the temple and Jerusalem was a very big deal. And completely on topic to the story of Jesus.

Plus, it could have been stated clearly that it was the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy. That it was the 'blood curse.' It wasn't. So we, including you, are left extrapolating.

Don't you think? If not, I guess I/we will now suffer a ton of your extrapolations ... in a long numbered list.
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:28 AM   #116
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Bro Z, think about it. It's not that there aren't historical records on the sacking of Jerusalem & the temple. It was a very big deal ; a big war ; that the Romans won ; and the Jews lost ; and they don't have their temple to this day. .

So you'd think it would be remarked about in New Testament accounts. For instance, John was written 25 years after the sacking, surely the authors knew about it. So why isn't it written about at least in some detail?

Another instance : Matthew, the only gospel that mentions it, have the Jews saying, "his blood be on us and our children." Shouldn't Matthew have mentioned the sacking of the temple -- it meant that his blood was upon them -- that deserved at least some detailed account -- at least something clearly stated about it fulfilling Jesus' prophecy?

But okay, we can't expect the New Testament to be a historical type document. But still. The sacking of the temple and Jerusalem was a very big deal. And completely on topic to the story of Jesus.

Plus, it could have been stated clearly that it was the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy. That it was the 'blood curse.' It wasn't. So we, including you, are left extrapolating.

Don't you think? If not, I guess I/we will now suffer a ton of your extrapolations ... in a long numbered list.
Hey Awareness, what's you're point and what does it have to do with Christianity?
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:35 AM   #117
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Jesus told the people in Jerusalem that when the armies surrounded Jerusalem the son of man would appear in the clouds so they should look up. Jerusalem was destroyed as you say but when they looked up the son of man did not appear in the clouds. As a result there was a shift in the eschatology away from the return of Jesus to establish his kingdom to the church on earth as an enduring institution and the destination of heaven for the individual believer at the end of life. This shift is already evident in the Gospel of John which de-emphasizes the Apocalypse in favor of a realized eschatology.
30and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31And he shall send forth his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

This is in Matt 24, at the end of the chapter, after the following things:

1. Temple is destroyed, not one stone left upon another.
2. Many false Christ’s coming in Jesus name
3. Wars and rumors of war, nation rise against nation, Kingdom against kingdom
4. Famines and earthquakes in diverse places
5. Delivered up and persecuted and “hated of all nations”. You cannot claim that Israel’s persecution of Peter, Paul and the apostles fulfills “hated of all nations”.
6. Many false prophets shall arise
7. Finally, “when you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the Holy Place” — so not only is the temple completely destroyed it must also be completely rebuilt.
8. That sun shall be darkened
9. The stars shall fall from heaven

So how could anyone teach that the book of Matthew taught Jesus prophesied that His second coming would take place during the lifetime of the apostles?

Instead Jesus said many false prophets and many false Christ's would come teaching stuff to confuse the elect.
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:43 AM   #118
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Bro Z, think about it. It's not that there aren't historical records on the sacking of Jerusalem & the temple. It was a very big deal ; a big war ; that the Romans won ; and the Jews lost ; and they don't have their temple to this day. .

So you'd think it would be remarked about in New Testament accounts. For instance, John was written 25 years after the sacking, surely the authors knew about it. So why isn't it written about at least in some detail?

Another instance : Matthew, the only gospel that mentions it, have the Jews saying, "his blood be on us and our children." Shouldn't Matthew have mentioned the sacking of the temple -- it meant that his blood was upon them -- that deserved at least some detailed account -- at least something clearly stated about it fulfilling Jesus' prophecy?

But okay, we can't expect the New Testament to be a historical type document. But still. The sacking of the temple and Jerusalem was a very big deal. And completely on topic to the story of Jesus.

Plus, it could have been stated clearly that it was the fulfillment of Jesus' prophecy. That it was the 'blood curse.' It wasn't. So we, including you, are left extrapolating.

Don't you think? If not, I guess I/we will now suffer a ton of your extrapolations ... in a long numbered list.
The New Testament does refer to it: Acts, Peter and James all refer to the scattering of the Jews. Revelation begins discussing John in exile. Hebrews talks about the physical temple as a type of the spiritual one. Paul talks about the Jews as a "branch that has been cut off" but could still be "grafted in". Matthew goes into very specific detail about what is going to happen. Revelation gives us very good detail about what happens at the end of the age. Both of these accounts tie nicely with OT Prophets.

Paul's ministry was not to the Jews but the gentiles, why should he talk about it other than his calling for an offering to bring to the saints in Jerusalem?

James and Peter are not interested in preserving the Jewish religion, their interest is in ministering to the suffering saints who are of the circumcision.

What do you want them to say "ha, ha, we were right!" Do you even know what spirit you are?
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:57 AM   #119
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Christianity was invented because the Apocalypse did not come quickly as predicted.
This is the main contention of this thread. I agree that Christianity was invented, but not because the Apocalypse did not come as quickly as "predicted". There is no doubt that many expected the Lord to bring in the Kingdom at his first coming, we are told this in the NT, so it is no surprise if they expected it to come with the early church. But the interpretation that Jesus predicted that in Matt 10:23 is just not supportable.

Instead I would say that Jesus prophesied that Christianity would be invented when He warned of "many false Christ's" and "many false prophets". All believers are "anointed" which is the meaning of Christ. It is common in Christianity to refer to "the anointed man of God" referring to some Christian leader. I do not understand why people assume a false Christ or false prophet has to be a mass murderer like Charles Manson, or a cult leader like David Koresh, of a suicidal maniac like Jim Jones. The NT never gives this as a prerequisite. We hear repeatedly of Christians "returning to the pure word of God" -- that implies they were led astray by something other than the fellowship of the Apostles, i.e. a false prophet or false Christ.

So I would change the first post to:

"Jesus prophesied that Christianity would be invented in Matt 24, referring to these Christian leaders as 'false prophets' and 'false prophets' and saying that they would lead many astray."
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Old 06-02-2018, 07:05 AM   #120
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30and then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31And he shall send forth his angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other.

This is in Matt 24, at the end of the chapter, after the following things:

1. Temple is destroyed, not one stone left upon another.
2. Many false Christ’s coming in Jesus name
3. Wars and rumors of war, nation rise against nation, Kingdom against kingdom
4. Famines and earthquakes in diverse places
5. Delivered up and persecuted and “hated of all nations”. You cannot claim that Israel’s persecution of Peter, Paul and the apostles fulfills “hated of all nations”.
6. Many false prophets shall arise
7. Finally, “when you see the abomination of desolation, which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the Holy Place” — so not only is the temple completely destroyed it must also be completely rebuilt.
8. That sun shall be darkened
9. The stars shall fall from heaven

So how could anyone teach that the book of Matthew taught Jesus prophesied that His second coming would take place during the lifetime of the apostles?

Instead Jesus said many false prophets and many false Christ's would come teaching stuff to confuse the elect.
According to modern historians, Matthew was probably written a decade or two after Mark in the 80s or 90s of the first century. By then the original expectation that the son of man would appear to anyone of the first generation was in serious doubt. Many of the predicted events had already occurred by the time the gospel of Matthew was written. The final caveat that no one knew exactly when the son of man would appear including Jesus himself punctuates the uncertainty of the author's point of view. Jesus's earlier statement that the son of man would return before they finished proselytizing Israel may reflect an earlier layer of tradition.
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Old 06-02-2018, 08:42 AM   #121
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Hey Awareness, what's you're point and what does it have to do with Christianity?
My point should be obvious. That, the sacking of Jerusalem & the temple was not discussed specifically and in detail in the NT accounts.

And what does it have to do with Christianity?

Oh I don't know. I guess, according to the NT, it had very little at all to do with Christianity... back then ... to NT authors.

But it has everything to do with Bible believing Christians today. Did you know that Israel was founded as a state? And that they've taken Jerusalem back, and the temple mount, just recently?

Maybe you are like Paul. He wrote before the sacking. Even in his pseudepigraphal 2 Thess, it speaks of the son of perdition sitting in the existing temple, exalting himself as God, in the temple that stood in Paul's day. Paul didn't relate Jesus' prophecy to the sacking of the temple. The temple hadn't yet been sacked.

But these verses in 2 Thess, concerning the existing standing temple, are now very important to Bible believers, particularly of the prophecy sort ; who think that they now today relate to the soon coming 3rd temple, cuz it signals Jesus is on his way in the clouds real soon.

Other than that, it has nothing to do with Christianity. In fact, I wish today's Christians thought like the NT authors - minus the extrapolations. But not like the pseudepigrapha 2 Thessalonians.

Thanks for asking. And bro zeek, you should be proud of me. Thanks to you I'm learning better than to just bust out with my infamous, "Bahahahahaha."
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Old 06-02-2018, 09:17 AM   #122
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The New Testament does refer to it: Acts, Peter and James all refer to the scattering of the Jews. Revelation begins discussing John in exile. Hebrews talks about the physical temple as a type of the spiritual one. Paul talks about the Jews as a "branch that has been cut off" but could still be "grafted in". Matthew goes into very specific detail about what is going to happen. Revelation gives us very good detail about what happens at the end of the age. Both of these accounts tie nicely with OT Prophets.
Noted church historian Phillip Schaff informs us "that the traditional date of Revelation (~90 AD) rests on the testimony of Irenaeus, but the internal evidence strongly favors an earlier date after the death of Nero (6-9-68) and the destruction of Jerusalem (8-10-70). This also helps to explain the difference between fiery energy of the Apocalypse and the calm repose of the fourth Gospel, composed at an old age."

I tend to agree.
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Old 06-02-2018, 10:34 AM   #123
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According to modern historians, Matthew was probably written a decade or two after Mark in the 80s or 90s of the first century. By then the original expectation that the son of man would appear to anyone of the first generation was in serious doubt. Many of the predicted events had already occurred by the time the gospel of Matthew was written. The final caveat that no one knew exactly when the son of man would appear including Jesus himself punctuates the uncertainty of the author's point of view. Jesus's earlier statement that the son of man would return before they finished proselytizing Israel may reflect an earlier layer of tradition.
If I understand this point correctly you are saying the author of Matthew was "adjusting" his quotes based on 20/20 hindsight. That is complete conjecture, but I am willing to put aside those quotes, remove them from consideration. There are still plenty of quotes concerning prophecies that they did not have any benefit of hindsight on.

Personally I think all of this is absurd. We have historians putting out accounts of WWII 60-70 years after the fact, but based on the documents that were created at the time. The fact that the gospel wasn't widely disseminated prior to a certain point is not evidence of anything. How long did it take John Meyers to write his book?
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Old 06-02-2018, 11:08 AM   #124
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If I understand this point correctly you are saying the author of Matthew was "adjusting" his quotes based on 20/20 hindsight. That is complete conjecture, but I am willing to put aside those quotes, remove them from consideration. There are still plenty of quotes concerning prophecies that they did not have any benefit of hindsight on.

Personally I think all of this is absurd. We have historians putting out accounts of WWII 60-70 years after the fact, but based on the documents that were created at the time. The fact that the gospel wasn't widely disseminated prior to a certain point is not evidence of anything. How long did it take John Meyers to write his book?

Did you mean John Myer?
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Old 06-02-2018, 01:01 PM   #125
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In response to post #110.

Matt 10:23 refers to the coming of the Son of Man before the apostles are able to go through the cities of Israel preaching the gospel. The sense I get from this chapter is that the Lord is telling the apostles to be urgent because they will run out of time.

All the commentaries on this passage see this expression "the coming of the Son of Man" as a point that needs quite a bit of consideration. Obviously you are immediately reminded of the Lord Jesus coming in the Clouds at the end of the age.

However, in Matt 24 the Lord is very clear that many things will happen and "the end is not yet" and He also tells us that we will preach the gospel throughout the entire world and to all the nations and then the end will come.

It is an erroneous practice to interpret the Bible based on a single verse.

So, you have to reconcile both Matt 10 which is very clear that the apostles will run out of time prior to the "coming of the Son of Man" and will not be able to go through all the cities of Israel before that point. And on the other hand there will be wars, rumors of wars, nation against nation, kingdom against kingdom, and this is only the beginning of tribulation, the end is not yet. Instead, this gospel of the kingdom will be preached to the entire world and to all the nations. Only then will "the end come". There is no suggestion in Matt 24 that it will be the apostles preaching to all the nations, rather it is "this gospel of the kingdom will be preached".

So regardless of how appealing it is to suggest that Matt 10 is referring to "the end of the age" we know it isn't. Instead if we look at Luke 21 there is a very strong correlation between these two portions that suggest it is talking about the destruction of Jerusalem and the temple. This destruction of the temple is also spelled out in Matt 24. This also corresponds with the historical record. During the ministry of the apostles the Jews were scattered abroad, both Peter and James refer to this.

So then Matt 10, Matt 24, Luke 21, and the historical record all fit very nicely together leaving us one last question. What does this term "the coming of the Son of Man" refer to?

In my opinion Hosea 13 is instructive here.

v.5 "besides me there is no savior" however Israel has forgotten Him.

v. 9 "it is thy destruction O Israel that you are against Me, your help".

They rejected Jesus as savior, and that is to their destruction. He reminds us that He gave us King Saul in His anger and then took him away in His wrath. Israel's rejecting God and demanding to have a king set over them was a prefigure of their rejection of Jesus Christ as their savior and king.

v. 14 "I will ransom them from the power of Sheol; I will redeem them from death: O death, where are thy plagues? O Sheol, where is thy destruction?"

This is the redemptive work of Jesus, only He can save them, and yet they rejected this and chose "Cesar to be their king". And Hosea says "the sorrows of a travailing woman will come upon him, he is an unwise son".

Finally an "east wind will come". If you live in Israel and east wind would be coming from across the Middle East, a hot, dry wind, a drought. We saw this, Israel as a nation dried up. "the breath of Jehovah coming up from the wilderness" that this will be the judgement of God because they rebelled. The conclusion of this chapter in Hosea is clearly referring to an army destroying the land "fall by the sword", "ripped up" and "dashed in pieces".

I think this prophecy is very well aligned to this period in time from the Lord's crucifixion to the destruction of Jerusalem in AD 70. Therefore "The breath of Jehovah coming up" would be equivalent to "the coming of the Son of Man".
So you like to gather these verses together that don't actually relate to draw this picture. It doesn't make it so. It just makes it an interesting opinion. It's extrapolation.
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Old 06-02-2018, 03:11 PM   #126
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Did you mean John Myer?
yeah, sorry
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Old 06-02-2018, 03:53 PM   #127
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My point should be obvious. That, the sacking of Jerusalem & the temple was not discussed specifically and in detail in the NT accounts.

And what does it have to do with Christianity?

Oh I don't know. I guess, according to the NT, it had very little at all to do with Christianity... back then ... to NT authors.

But it has everything to do with Bible believing Christians today. Did you know that Israel was founded as a state? And that they've taken Jerusalem back, and the temple mount, just recently?

Maybe you are like Paul. He wrote before the sacking. Even in his pseudepigraphal 2 Thess, it speaks of the son of perdition sitting in the existing temple, exalting himself as God, in the temple that stood in Paul's day. Paul didn't relate Jesus' prophecy to the sacking of the temple. The temple hadn't yet been sacked.

But these verses in 2 Thess, concerning the existing standing temple, are now very important to Bible believers, particularly of the prophecy sort ; who think that they now today relate to the soon coming 3rd temple, cuz it signals Jesus is on his way in the clouds real soon.

Other than that, it has nothing to do with Christianity. In fact, I wish today's Christians thought like the NT authors - minus the extrapolations. But not like the pseudepigrapha 2 Thessalonians.

Thanks for asking. And bro zeek, you should be proud of me. Thanks to you I'm learning better than to just bust out with my infamous, "Bahahahahaha."
Love the snarky attitude but I thought you were going to offer a hypothesis about why the destruction of Jerusalem & the temple was not discussed in the NT accounts.
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:39 PM   #128
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If I understand this point correctly you are saying the author of Matthew was "adjusting" his quotes based on 20/20 hindsight. That is complete conjecture, but I am willing to put aside those quotes, remove them from consideration. There are still plenty of quotes concerning prophecies that they did not have any benefit of hindsight on.

Personally I think all of this is absurd. We have historians putting out accounts of WWII 60-70 years after the fact, but based on the documents that were created at the time. The fact that the gospel wasn't widely disseminated prior to a certain point is not evidence of anything. How long did it take John Meyers to write his book?
Was John Meyer an eye witness of the events that he wrote about? None of the gospel writers claim to be eyewitnesses of Jesus.

None of the Gospels are not written in the first person singular voice as a witness testifying directly to what he has seen and heard. All four of them keep their identities anonymous, something you wouldn't expect if they were apostles whom Jesus had personally chosen and sent.

According to the Gospels the disciples were mostly uneducated peasants from Galilee. Acts 4:13 says Peter and John were uneducated and untrained men. The gospels as literary documents reflect higher education and for the most part correct Greek grammar. Jesus and his Apostles appear to have spoken Aramaic.

The author of Luke explicitly tells us that he used oral and written sources for his narrative and claims that some of these sources were drawn from eyewitnesses. The others seem to have done the same. The Gospel of Matthew also appears to rely on the Gospel of Mark as source material, something you wouldn't expect the author to do if he were an eye witness himself. The Gospel of John is so markedly different from the other three synoptic gospels that when the accounts conflict John is often thought to adhere less to historical fact.
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:44 PM   #129
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Was John Meyer an eye witness of the events that he wrote about? None of the gospel writers claim to be eyewitnesses of Jesus.

None of the Gospels are not written in the first person singular voice. All four of them keep their identities anonymous, something you wouldn't expect if they were apostles whom Jesus had chosen and sent.

According to the Gospels the disciples were mostly uneducated peasants From Galilee. Acts 4:13 says Peter and John were uneducated and untrained men. The gospels as literary documents reflect higher education and for the most part correct Greek grammar. Jesus and his Apostles appear to have spoken Aramaic.

The author of Luke explicitly tells us that he used oral and written sources for his narrative and claims that some of these sources were drawn from eyewitnesses. The Gospel of Matthew also appears to rely on the Gospel of Mark as source material, something you wouldn't expect the author to do if he were an eye witness.
But what is the point?
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:56 PM   #130
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But what is the point?
The point of what?
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Old 06-02-2018, 07:05 PM   #131
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Instead, this gospel of the kingdom will be preached to the entire world and to all the nations. Only then will "the end come".
This is a failed prophecy. Not only because it hasn't been fulfilled in 2000 years, but because at that time all the nations of the world weren't known. Not only has Christianity changed since then, the known world has changed too. It got much bigger.

Since back then there's been way more nations discovered. So thinking that all the nations back then applies to all the nations today is nonsense, only believed in by blind fanatic prophecy believers, thinking that Jesus knew about all the nations known today.

But we know that Jesus wasn't omniscient. Not only did he not know the day and the hour, he also didn't know that the world was round, not the center of the universe, and included hundreds of nations, not known back then. He was wrong on all accounts.

But because of it, Christianity has dragged that prophecy along thru all the advances of knowledge, of the world and universe.

I guess some things about Christianity never change. It could be said that Christianity tries to stay back in those ancient days, fails, but hangs on anyway ... but still become a totally different Christianity from what it was in Jesus' day ... thinking that it's the same.
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Old 06-02-2018, 08:39 PM   #132
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This is a failed prophecy. Not only because it hasn't been fulfilled in 2000 years, but because at that time all the nations of the world weren't known. Not only has Christianity changed since then, the known world has changed too. It got much bigger.

Since back then there's been way more nations discovered. So thinking that all the nations back then applies to all the nations today is nonsense, only believed in by blind fanatic prophecy believers, thinking that Jesus knew about all the nations known today.

But we know that Jesus wasn't omniscient. Not only did he not know the day and the hour, he also didn't know that the world was round, not the center of the universe, and included hundreds of nations, not known back then. He was wrong on all accounts.

But because of it, Christianity has dragged that prophecy along thru all the advances of knowledge, of the world and universe.

I guess some things about Christianity never change. It could be said that Christianity tries to stay back in those ancient days, fails, but hangs on anyway ... but still become a totally different Christianity from what it was in Jesus' day ... thinking that it's the same.
It's yet to be fulfilled, that does not mean it has failed. Once NK and others e.g. Iran are more open to the gospel then the end is nearer.
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Old 06-03-2018, 07:11 AM   #133
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One of the early seeds that grew into what became Christianity was Hellenism. According to Acts 6:1 there were hellenists in Jerusalem from the earliest days of the church. That verse says that the hellenists complained against the hebrews because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. Acts 9: 29 says that after Saul's conversion he disputed against the hellenists in Jerusalem. Apollos who was from Alexandria, the center of Hellenistic philosophy, was probably a hellenist.

The best known Hellenist of the first century was Philo in Alexandria who was the contemporary of Jesus and Paul. He combined Judaism platonism and stoicism. Philo’s allegorization of the Hebrew Bible set a precedent that was followed by Paul who used a similar method of biblical hermeneutics. Philo also promulgated the concept of the logos which of course is used in the prologue of the Gospel of John. The highly symbolic interpretation of the life of Jesus exhibited in The Gospel of John is typical of a Hellenistic philosophical approach.

The Church Father Clement who's also from Alexandria was a hellenist who taught that philosophy was given to the Greeks as their own kind of covenant and foundation for the philosophy of Christ.
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Old 06-03-2018, 07:19 AM   #134
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It's yet to be fulfilled, that does not mean it has failed. Once NK and others e.g. Iran are more open to the gospel then the end is nearer.
I'm doing all I can to hold back a Bahahahaha.
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Old 06-03-2018, 08:52 AM   #135
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One of the early seeds that grew into what became Christianity was Hellenism. According to Acts 6:1 there were hellenists in Jerusalem from the earliest days of the church. That verse says that the hellenists complained against the hebrews because their widows were neglected in the daily distribution. Acts 9: 29 says that Saul called on the name of the Lord Jesus and disputed against the hellenists but they attempted to kill him. Apollos who was from Alexandria, the center of Hellenistic philosophy, was probably a hellenist.

The chief exponent of Hellenism was Philo in Alexandria who combined Judaism platonism and stoicism. Philo’s allegorization of the Hebrew Bible set a precedent that was followed by Paul who used a similar method of biblical hermeneutics. Philo also promulgated the concept of the logos which of course is used in the prologue of the Gospel of John. The highly symbolic interpretation of the life of Jesus exhibited in The Gospel of John is typical of a Hellenistic philosophical approach.

The Church Father Clement who's also from Alexandria was a hellenist who taught that philosophy was given to the Greeks as their own kind of covenant and foundation for the philosophy of Christ.
That Christianity was Hellenized is obvious by the fact that all the NT books, even Paul's, was written in Greek, and not Hebrew.

I once brought up that they used the Greek Septuagint in Sunday School class, and the preacher that was leading the class said, "If it was good enough for Jesus, and the apostles, it's good enough for us."

But we don't use the Septuagint today. In fact, we completely reject that Christianity was Hellenized. While reading books that were Hellenized ... like the gospel of John, that was clearly Hellenized.
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:08 AM   #136
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Paul tells the Romans :

Rom_16:25* Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,


This mystery that was hidden since the world began was revealed when the Holy Land had been Hellenized.

Why did God wait to reveal it then? Why was Jesus born into a period when the culture he grew up in was ruled by the Romans, and the Jewish people had become Hellenized?

Then, after Jesus ascends, he appears to Saul, a Jew that's a Roman, who brings in the gentiles, that were the Hellenizers.

So was Christianity, starting with the Nazarene's, poor because it started out Hellenized?
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Old 06-04-2018, 07:15 AM   #137
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Paul tells the Romans :

Rom_16:25* Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,


This mystery that was hidden since the world began was revealed when the Holy Land had been Hellenized.

Why did God wait to reveal it then? Why was Jesus born into a period when the culture he grew up in was ruled by the Romans, and the Jewish people had become Hellenized?

Then, after Jesus ascends, he appears to Saul, a Jew that's a Roman, who brings in the gentiles, that were the Hellenizers.

So was Christianity, starting with the Nazarene's, poor because it started out Hellenized?
Since we are distinguishing between the NT church and fallen, degraded Christianity in this thread you have failed to provide evidence that Paul started Christianity. You make that leap when it is very much an unproven assertion.

Paul's ministry builds the church. Shortly after the church arrives on the scene we also see Christianity. Correlation is not causation. I recently saw an ice cream truck, not more than one week later it was 90 degrees. Did the ice cream truck cause the summer? Correlation is not causation.
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Old 06-04-2018, 08:47 AM   #138
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Correlation is not causation.
Thanks. I'll remember that.
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Old 06-05-2018, 12:46 PM   #139
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you have failed to provide evidence that Paul started Christianity.
I re-read my post. I made no such claim. Unless you can prove that Paul degraded Christianity, you're off topic.
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Old 06-05-2018, 03:01 PM   #140
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I re-read my post. I made no such claim. Unless you can prove that Paul degraded Christianity, you're off topic.
1. The first post says that Christianity was invented because the apocalypse didn’t come as quickly as predicted.

2. In Post #4 Zeek defines Christianity for this thread as a human response to the cognitive dissonance that resulted when Jesus did not return in the first generation of believers.

3. In Post #6 Zeek, responding to your comment, says that IIPeter supports his theory of a human response rationalizing the fact that the Lord had not returned yet.

Then you quote Paul in Romans 16:5 about the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret, said this mystery wasn't revealed until the land was Hellenized, and then ask if Christianity was poor because it was Hellenized.

Therefore, based on the context I read your post to say that Paul was the one who brought in the human response with his "revelation of the mystery" which you refer to as "Hellenized".
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Old 06-05-2018, 06:39 PM   #141
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1. The first post says that Christianity was invented because the apocalypse didn’t come as quickly as predicted.

2. In Post #4 Zeek defines Christianity for this thread as a human response to the cognitive dissonance that resulted when Jesus did not return in the first generation of believers.

3. In Post #6 Zeek, responding to your comment, says that IIPeter supports his theory of a human response rationalizing the fact that the Lord had not returned yet.

Then you quote Paul in Romans 16:5 about the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret, said this mystery wasn't revealed until the land was Hellenized, and then ask if Christianity was poor because it was Hellenized.

Therefore, based on the context I read your post to say that Paul was the one who brought in the human response with his "revelation of the mystery" which you refer to as "Hellenized".
I think you got points 1 thru 3 right. Now I understand how you misread my post ; that I said Paul started Christianity.

But I didn't say that. Neither did I say that the "mystery" was Hellenized. I think I made it clear enough that, the Christian era arose when the Holy Land was Hellenized ; during Hellenized times.

And then I ask if Christianity was poor because of it.
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Old 06-06-2018, 04:48 AM   #142
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That Christianity was Hellenized is obvious by the fact that all the NT books, even Paul's, was written in Greek, and not Hebrew.

I once brought up that they used the Greek Septuagint in Sunday School class, and the preacher that was leading the class said, "If it was good enough for Jesus, and the apostles, it's good enough for us."

But we don't use the Septuagint today. In fact, we completely reject that Christianity was Hellenized. While reading books that were Hellenized ... like the gospel of John, that was clearly Hellenized.
The Greeks introduced Hellenism in the 4th Century BCE. Some Jews were captivated by the Greek ideal. But it became a source of conflict in 167 BCE when Antiochus epiphanes ruler of the seleucid empire violated the temple and introduced a Hellenistic cult there. The dynasty founded by The Maccabees was cruel and corrupt. So there was a lot of conflict on both sides of the issue.

The early Jesus movement in Palestine where many of the sects were hostile to Gentiles was unusual in that it attracted Greek-speaking Jews from the diaspora and "God fearers" the non-jews who were honorary members of the synagogues. Diaspora Jews tended to be less exclusive and more open to Hellenistic ideas.

Alexandrian Jews spoke Greek and achieved an interesting fusion of Greek and Jewish culture. But few of them could read classical Hebrew so they couldn't understand the Torah thus the need for the Septuagint translation.

Philo of Alexandria seems to have influenced both Paul and the Gospel of John. He produced a large number of commentaries on the pentateuch that you can read today. He allegorized the Bible using numerological and etymological methods and the Logos.

The apocalypticists stressed the coming of the Kingdom to this world. The Alexandrians or hellenists saw this world as a shadow of the timeless dimension of reality that is more real than its physical or historical dimension. When Jesus failed to return to set up his kingdom on Earth as expected the church moved in the direction of otherworldly salvation that had been laid out by the hellenists. If we want to call that trend "Christianity" then it could be said that Christianity saved the Jesus movement rather than that it polluted it.
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Old 06-06-2018, 04:54 AM   #143
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I re-read my post. I made no such claim. Unless you can prove that Paul degraded Christianity, you're off topic.
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I think you got points 1 thru 3 right. Now I understand how you misread my post ; that I said Paul started Christianity.

But I didn't say that. Neither did I say that the "mystery" was Hellenized. I think I made it clear enough that, the Christian era arose when the Holy Land was Hellenized ; during Hellenized times.

And then I ask if Christianity was poor because of it.
Not clear enough for me to understand, even after the explanation. What does Paul's quote from Romans have to do with it? Have you distinguished between Christianity and the NT revelation of the church? If so, in what post?
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:01 AM   #144
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Paul tells the Romans :

Rom_16:25* Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,


This mystery that was hidden since the world began was revealed when the Holy Land had been Hellenized.

Why did God wait to reveal it then? Why was Jesus born into a period when the culture he grew up in was ruled by the Romans, and the Jewish people had become Hellenized?

Then, after Jesus ascends, he appears to Saul, a Jew that's a Roman, who brings in the gentiles, that were the Hellenizers.

So was Christianity, starting with the Nazarene's, poor because it started out Hellenized?
From a Hellenistic perspective the revelation of the mystery needed a synthesis of the Hebrew religion and Greek philosophy. Whatever Jesus taught was received and interpreted by persons of that perspective. Since they were the educated literate few, they're the ones that left us with the writings that have become the foundation of Christianity.
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:41 AM   #145
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Since we are distinguishing between the NT church and fallen, degraded Christianity in this thread you have failed to provide evidence that Paul started Christianity. You make that leap when it is very much an unproven assertion.

Paul's ministry builds the church. Shortly after the church arrives on the scene we also see Christianity. Correlation is not causation. I recently saw an ice cream truck, not more than one week later it was 90 degrees. Did the ice cream truck cause the summer? Correlation is not causation.
The hope of Jesus's return in his lifetime to set up the kingdom of God on earth was very much alive in Paul and coexisted with his Hellenistic tendencies. As the hope for Jesus's soon return diminished over the generations Paul's Hellenistic teachings were the ones that were more often applied to build the church. With the resurgence of apocalypticism among the Protestant churches of course Paul apocalyptic teaching came more to the forefront.
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Old 06-06-2018, 05:45 AM   #146
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1. The first post says that Christianity was invented because the apocalypse didn’t come as quickly as predicted.

2. In Post #4 Zeek defines Christianity for this thread as a human response to the cognitive dissonance that resulted when Jesus did not return in the first generation of believers.

3. In Post #6 Zeek, responding to your comment, says that IIPeter supports his theory of a human response rationalizing the fact that the Lord had not returned yet.

Then you quote Paul in Romans 16:5 about the revelation of the mystery that was kept secret, said this mystery wasn't revealed until the land was Hellenized, and then ask if Christianity was poor because it was Hellenized.

Therefore, based on the context I read your post to say that Paul was the one who brought in the human response with his "revelation of the mystery" which you refer to as "Hellenized".
Thanks for your summary of my points, ZNP. I attempt to assimilate Awareness's point in terms of my thinking in post 144.
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Old 06-06-2018, 07:02 AM   #147
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From a Hellenistic perspective the revelation of the mystery needed a synthesis of the Hebrew religion and Greek philosophy. Whatever Jesus taught was received and interpreted by persons of that perspective. Since they were the educated literate few, they're the ones that left us with the writings that have become the foundation of Christianity.
I think it is clear that the NT is the foundation of the church (the rock the church is built on is the revelation of Jesus Christ).

So I assume when you use the term "Christianity" in this post it is referring not to the church but to the "poor, poor christianity" of this thread.

Therefore they are both based on the NT, the difference is that Christianity is based very much on the interpretation of these verses by particular Christian teachers whereas the church does not suffer such a limitation.

For example, Witness Lee greatly limited the way in which the NT could be understood, interpreted and even what the members of the LRC could read, write and say.
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Old 06-06-2018, 07:09 AM   #148
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The hope of Jesus's return in his lifetime to set up the kingdom of God on earth was very much alive in Paul and coexisted with his Hellenistic tendencies. As the hope for Jesus's soon return diminished over the generations Paul's Hellenistic teachings were the ones that were more often applied to build the church. With the resurgence of apocalypticism among the Protestant churches of course Paul apocalyptic teaching came more to the forefront.
Again, this is a fair historical analysis which is making the leap from correlation to causation.

Instead, I would argue that the cause for this was that the believers "left their first love". Much of the legalistic and organizational aspects of Christianity are contrary to the Jesus we saw and loved in the gospels.

The fact that the teachings took this course to my understanding is that they chose the easiest route. The principal being that the road to destruction is wide, and the road to life is narrow and there are few that find it. Popular, prevailing views do not indicate an accurate understanding of the word, simply the understanding that those who take the broad way choose to embrace.

I think the Lord describes this in his parable of the good samaritan where everyone in the story is "going down to Jericho" except for the Samaritan who is "journeying". Christianity in that parable is depicted by Jericho.
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Old 06-06-2018, 08:06 AM   #149
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So I assume when you use the term "Christianity" in this post it is referring not to the church but to the "poor, poor christianity" of this thread.
I think the question, Poor, Poor, Christianity?, leaves that open ended.

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Therefore they are both based on the NT, the difference is that Christianity is based very much on the interpretation of these verses by particular Christian teachers whereas the church does not suffer such a limitation.
What's that you are saying? "the church does not suffer such a limitation? How's that? or rather, how's that working out for the church?

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For example, Witness Lee greatly limited the way in which the NT could be understood, interpreted and even what the members of the LRC could read, write and say.
And thus 'burnings.' Supported by Acts 19:18. A verse that implicates that early on Christianity started out poor, to the price of "fifty thousand pieces of silver."
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Old 06-06-2018, 09:06 AM   #150
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From a Hellenistic perspective the revelation of the mystery needed a synthesis of the Hebrew religion and Greek philosophy. Whatever Jesus taught was received and interpreted by persons of that perspective. Since they were the educated literate few, they're the ones that left us with the writings that have become the foundation of Christianity.
That God revealed the revelation of the mystery during the Hellenistic Era is significant.

It did not, however, permit idols. The ten commandments still held. But still, Hellenistic culture couldn't help but influence early Christianity.

They were, after all, using the Koine Greek Septuagint as reference, not the Hebraic text ; even "Matthew," the most Jewish gospel ; mistakenly taking "virgin birth" from it.

So in the end, Hellenistic influence, did not make Christianity poor, but rich.

Exemplified by the fact that all the NT was written in Koine Greek. Christianity, after the canonization of the Greek books, totally and completely depend on that Hellenization.

Paul's revelation of the mystery spring up during the Hellenistic Era, by a Hellenistic Roman Jew (perhaps God couldn't reveal it to a non-Hellenistic Jew). And we should be grateful, and say, "Amen Lord."

Then, after Paul's Greek writings, circa 40 years later, the Hellenized Greek gospel that came to be named John, was written. And the revelation of the mystery continued to be revealed, actually opening with "Logos," that was at the time, totally Hellenistic. And all Christians since say amen.
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Old 06-06-2018, 09:56 AM   #151
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What's that you are saying? "the church does not suffer such a limitation? How's that? or rather, how's that working out for the church?
I think it is a fundamental factor in the growth and maturation of the church.

I think that you are focused on the noise and pomp and missing the masterpiece of God which has yet to be unveiled. It is like looking at some preacher asking for a $54 million dollar jet to "preach the gospel" and thinking that this behavior somehow speaks negatively about what God and Christ are doing. It is simply the black background which will make the revelation of the church all that more glorious.
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Old 06-06-2018, 11:01 AM   #152
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I think it is a fundamental factor in the growth and maturation of the church.

I think that you are focused on the noise and pomp and missing the masterpiece of God which has yet to be unveiled. It is like looking at some preacher asking for a $54 million dollar jet to "preach the gospel" and thinking that this behavior somehow speaks negatively about what God and Christ are doing. It is simply the black background which will make the revelation of the church all that more glorious.
The church is old with gray hair and if not mature yet isn't ever gonna be.
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Old 06-06-2018, 01:45 PM   #153
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The church is old with gray hair and if not mature yet isn't ever gonna be.
I guess it has been hidden from you.

I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou didst hide these things from the wise and understanding, and didst reveal them unto babes: 26 yea, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in thy sight. 27 All things have been delivered unto me of my Father: and no one knoweth the Son, save the Father; neither doth any know the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to reveal him.
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Old 06-06-2018, 02:27 PM   #154
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I guess it has been hidden from you.

I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou didst hide these things from the wise and understanding, and didst reveal them unto babes: 26 yea, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in thy sight. 27 All things have been delivered unto me of my Father: and no one knoweth the Son, save the Father; neither doth any know the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to reveal him.
"no one knoweth the Son, save the Father, neither doth any know the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son willeth to reveal him"

Seems it's not up to me. Glad for you tho ... that you know the Father, that only the son knows ... so you know the Father like the son knows. Glad for you.
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Old 06-06-2018, 07:09 PM   #155
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I think it is a fundamental factor in the growth and maturation of the church.

I think that you are focused on the noise and pomp and missing the masterpiece of God which has yet to be unveiled
So are you saying that, the church is evolving to the Omega Point?
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Old 06-07-2018, 05:17 AM   #156
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So are you saying that, the church is evolving to the Omega Point?
I'm sure I didn't say that since I don't even know what you are referring to by "Omega Point".
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Old 06-07-2018, 05:58 AM   #157
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I think it is clear that the NT is the foundation of the church (the rock the church is built on is the revelation of Jesus Christ).

So I assume when you use the term "Christianity" in this post it is referring not to the church but to the "poor, poor christianity" of this thread.

Therefore they are both based on the NT, the difference is that Christianity is based very much on the interpretation of these verses by particular Christian teachers whereas the church does not suffer such a limitation.

For example, Witness Lee greatly limited the way in which the NT could be understood, interpreted and even what the members of the LRC could read, write and say.
My point was simply that the New Testament writings we have are from hellenists who were of the educated class of that era.

It's possible that the fact that Paul was educated gave him an advantage over the 12 apostles who weren't. The gospels were written anonymously so we don't actually know if Matthew or John wrote the gospels that are attributed to them. Likewise the Epistles of James Peter and John.

But, even if they did write those documents, what about Andrew, Phillip, Thomas, Bartholomew, Simon the zealot, or late comer, Matthias? Despite the fact that Jesus chose all but Matthias to disseminate his teaching we have nothing from them. Jesus appointed them. Where are their teachings?

Paul didn't know the pre Resurrection Jesus. He conveys little of Jesus's pre Resurrection teaching in his letters. And Paul also dominates the story in Acts. Since his Epistles came before the gospels were written Paul's brand of Hellenism may have influenced them as well.

In 2nd Corinthians 5 Paul says "...from now on we regard no one according to the flesh even though we have known Christ according to the flesh yet now we know him thus no longer." Was Paul suppressing the teachings of those who actually knew Jesus before the resurrection in favor his own Hellenistic gospel? If so, he succeeded.

It was the Pauline vision that prevailed and was used to build the church. In his epistle to the Galatians Paul questions the authority of James Peter and John calling them "reputed pillars". He boasts that he opposed Peter to his face because Peter disagreed with him about eating kosher food.

If the Galatians were to accept Paul's teaching over that of Peter and the other apostles then Paul would would be the dominant authority to them. This in fact seems what transpired among the churches eventually. The Hellenists prevailed. Those that didn't accept it came to be called Judaizers when in fact they may have simply been adhering to the practices of Judaism like Jesus did as the Book of Matthew presents him. What do you think?
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Old 06-07-2018, 07:50 AM   #158
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I'm sure I didn't say that since I don't even know what you are referring to by "Omega Point".
Silly me. I thought you said "Omega Point." I must read your posts like you read mine.

But really!? Haven't you heard of Google & Wikipedia?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omega_Point

I must have mistakenly thought I was talking to bro Ohio. He would be more likely to know. The term Omega Point was coined by a Catholic Priest. So he would more likely know the principle I'm talking about.

The principle I thought you were talking about. That the church would become something, eventually; I think you called it a masterpiece. Maybe you didn't mean that it would evolve into something, that it would one day go 'poof' and become something.

So maybe the Omega Point missed your point, when I used it. Please explain to me again how :

Quote:
I think it is a fundamental factor in the growth and maturation of the church.

I think that you are focused on the noise and pomp and missing the masterpiece of God which has yet to be unveiled.
Cuz it still sounds like you are speaking of the Omega Point.

This is important to this thread. Cuz a premise exists, that the early church was the ideal, that was lost, at some point, and further lost down thru the years. (We're trying to find that point).

And there's this thing called the Recovery. That sells itself as recovering that ideal. That claims to be the final preparation of the bride for the arrival of the bridegroom.

So is this what you meant, by the church eventually becoming a masterpiece?

Cuz I have to say, the church doesn't look like that that's what it's becoming. Sorry, if I see the reality.

We're trying to figure out just where the church made a wrong turn. I've basically asked if starting out during the Hellenized Age was that wrong turn.
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Old 06-07-2018, 01:03 PM   #159
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It's possible that the fact that Paul was educated gave him an advantage over the 12 apostles who weren't.
No doubt his ability to connect Jesus' ministry with the OT into one coherent revelation has helped.

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Despite the fact that Jesus chose all but Matthias to disseminate his teaching we have nothing from them. Jesus appointed them. Where are their teachings?
Since I don't know it is simply conjecture. Perhaps their teaching is precisely what we see in the gospels and acts and therefore we have no need of writings from them. Perhaps the gospels, like Luke's writings, represent a thorough summation of all their teachings.

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Was Paul suppressing the teachings of those who actually knew Jesus before the resurrection in favor his own Hellenistic gospel? If so, he succeeded.
This is the problem of being a talented member, it tends to suppress others talents. That said I feel that the gospels are very well represented in the church teachings.

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He boasts that he opposed Peter to his face because Peter disagreed with him about eating kosher food.
The point was not about kosher food, that point was resolved earlier by Peter and his vision. The point of contention was about not eating with believers because they were not "Jews".

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The Hellenists prevailed. Those that didn't accept it came to be called Judaizers when in fact they may have simply been adhering to the practices of Judaism like Jesus did as the Book of Matthew presents him. What do you think?
I don't think the Gospel of Matthew presents Jesus as a Judaizer. I define a Judaizer as one who requires believers to be circumcised, to convert to Judaism, to separate themselves from believers who have not converted, and who still keep the various animal sacrifices. I fully agree with Paul's understanding that Jesus death is the real circumcision and I fully agree with Peter's vision that Jesus death cleansed all of us so that we no longer have "clean" and "unclean" peoples.
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Old 06-08-2018, 05:05 AM   #160
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Here are a few things Witness Lee had to say about Christianity recorded in a book entitled Three Aspects of the Church: Book 2, The Course of the Church for your consideration.
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The worst titles that the Lord gives to the church are “great harlot” and “Babylon the Great” (Rev. 17:1-5). Babylon in Greek is equivalent to Babel in the Old Testament. Both words refer to confusion and fornication. Today the so-called churches in Christianity are Babylon. (Three Aspects of the Church: Book 2, The Course of the Church, Chapter 4, Section 3)
I think Babylon in Revelation symbolizes Rome not the church. What is the bass for claiming that it's the church? Elsewhere Lee says that Christianity is not the church.
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The modernists in today's Christianity preach Christ, but they do not believe that Christ came in the flesh; they are wooden and earthen vessels. Wooden and earthen vessels refers to false believers who are not truly saved. Because God is great, His house is a great house. In His great house there are vessels of gold (those who are divine), vessels of silver (those who are redeemed), and wooden and earthen vessels (those who are constituted with the fallen human nature). We were all earthen vessels, but we have been redeemed and have had a change in nature inwardly to become vessels of silver and gold.

The church today is in desolation and has become a great tree (Matt. 13:32). In this great tree, that is, in Christianity, there are all kinds of preachers and workers, such as Paul, Timothy, Hymenaeus, and Philetus. In the desolation of the church, the Lord wants us to cleanse ourselves from dishonorable vessels, from those who are fleshly, worldly, and natural. The Lord wants us to become vessels unto honor. Although we should not argue with people about doctrines, we need to discern their nature. We should discern whether the nature of someone's work is wooden and earthen or if it is gold and silver. Is it a work of wood and earth or a work of gold and silver? Some people build with wood, grass, and stubble; others build with gold, silver, and precious stones (1 Cor. 3:12). We must discern the nature of the work.(Three Aspects of the Church: Book 2, The Course of the Church, Chapter 5, Section 2)
It's generally true that modernism which is based on modern science is antithetical to religious supernaturalism. Modernism can receive the ethical teachings of Christianity for critical consideration and accept those which pass rational and empirical evaluation.

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Today Christianity is under the teaching of Balaam and the teaching of the Nicolaitans. In Christianity there are idols, wealth, position, and authoritarian control. However, it is difficult for people in Christianity to enjoy Christ, much less the hidden manna. If people refuse human teachings and organization and live a hidden life before God, they will be able to experience and enjoy the hidden Christ. This is why we do not advertise. We are willing to serve the Lord for our whole lives without being recognized by others. We are not willing to do anything in the name, organization, or realm of Christianity. The desire for even a little fame is a Nicolaitan thought. Some people eloquently argue that if we would just slightly change our methods, we would be well known in Christianity, and our work would be more effective. Their words are very persuasive, and if we were like Balaam, they would be like the bait on a fishhook to catch us and carry us away. (Three Aspects of the Church: Book 2, The Course of the Church, Chapter 7, Section 3)
Lee compares favorably to most of the televangelists I know of on this parameter.

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If we want to know what attitude we should have toward today's Christianity, we must understand God's attitude toward Christianity. We should have God's attitude toward Christianity in the present age.

GOD'S ATTITUDE
The light and prophecies in the New Testament show God's heart's desire and His attitude toward Christianity in this age. On one hand, God is dissatisfied with the desolated, confused, and transmuted condition of Christianity. God condemns divisions, mixture with the world, human organization by human will, falling into Babylon, and affording opportunities to Satan. On the other hand, although God condemns these things, He does not intend to eliminate these things in this age or even to forbid them. It seems that God not only allows these things to exist but also to continually increase. Thus, the number of sects in Christianity will increase over time, and Christianity will become more and more worldly and confused. God dislikes and condemns these situations, but He seems to allow them to continue. God does not intend to eliminate them immediately, and He does not even limit them. It seems as though God does not control them but allows them to go on freely.

OUR ATTITUDE
On the Negative Side—Not Participating,
Not Interfering, Not Criticizing, and Not Mentioning
Based on God's attitude, we should have two attitudes toward Christianity. First, if we receive mercy from the Lord, we should not participate in the confused, deformed situation in Christianity. Although God does not eliminate or forbid such an improper condition, He does say, “Come out of her, My people” (Rev. 18:4). Simply stated, one who lives before God, cares for God's heart's desire, has inner light, and is willing to pay the price cannot remain in organized Christianity. I am not exhorting people to leave the denominations; this is not a matter of whether a person is in a denomination. Rather, it is a matter of avoiding mixture with the world.

Second, we are foolish if we think that we can alter the condition of today's Christianity. Such thinking assumes that we are greater and more capable than God. Some people say, “The churches are divided; let us make them one.” Twenty-five years ago I also felt this way; however, I now feel that to say such a thing would indicate that I do not know myself and that to try to do such a thing would be to try to do what God Himself will not do. To hope to correct Christianity and eliminate its mistakes is to be foolish and proud. Who can reform Christianity? We cannot do it because God is not doing it. Of course, if God wanted to do it, He would have a way. However, God's Word shows that He is not reforming Christianity. Since He is not doing it, why should we try?

Therefore, on the one hand, we should not participate in Christianity, and on the other hand, we should not try to intervene in its situation; we should not even criticize Christianity. It is not our place to criticize Christianity. If we understand correctly, we should not even mention the condition of Christianity. When we preach the gospel, give messages, and visit or fellowship with people, we should not mention Christianity. Christianity is not our topic, and we should not intervene in, criticize, or even mention it. Christianity should not be in our eyes and thoughts. This does not mean that because of pride we do not look at anyone else; rather, to have Christianity in our thoughts is a waste of our time because we have no way or ability to do anything helpful. (Three Aspects of the Church: Book 2, The Course of the Church, Chapter 19, Section 1)
Lee isn't practicing what he is preaching here as he he is criticizing Christianity even in the process of saying we shouldn't. This book is composed of messages concerning the course of the church given by Lee during a training on service in Taipei, Taiwan in 1956. And he didn't let up after this. He verbally attacked Christianity frequently in his sermons and lessons during the thirteen years I participated in the LCM.

I think Lee's counsel to imitate God's forbearance is wise, but I include the LCM movement under the rubric "Christianity" that needs to be forbeared.
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Old 06-08-2018, 05:53 AM   #161
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No doubt his ability to connect Jesus' ministry with the OT into one coherent revelation has helped.



Since I don't know it is simply conjecture. Perhaps their teaching is precisely what we see in the gospels and acts and therefore we have no need of writings from them. Perhaps the gospels, like Luke's writings, represent a thorough summation of all their teachings.



This is the problem of being a talented member, it tends to suppress others talents. That said I feel that the gospels are very well represented in the church teachings.



The point was not about kosher food, that point was resolved earlier by Peter and his vision. The point of contention was about not eating with believers because they were not "Jews".



I don't think the Gospel of Matthew presents Jesus as a Judaizer. I define a Judaizer as one who requires believers to be circumcised, to convert to Judaism, to separate themselves from believers who have not converted, and who still keep the various animal sacrifices. I fully agree with Paul's understanding that Jesus death is the real circumcision and I fully agree with Peter's vision that Jesus death cleansed all of us so that we no longer have "clean" and "unclean" peoples.
Some Palestinian Jews hoped for a prophet like Moses who would bring Salvation from their hated oppressors the Romans and those who collaborated with them as well as present the law of God. Moses had prophesied of another Prophet like himself in Deuteronomy 18: 15 to 19. In Matthew Jesus is the new Moses. He doesn't replace the the Old Law rather he's the true and final interpreter of what the earlier Moses had recorded in the Torah. The law which Jesus gives doesn't conflict with the law of Moses rather it is its fulfillment ( 5:17). The followers of Jesus must follow the law of Moses by understanding it in the way directed by the new Moses Jesus the Messiah. I join Bart Ehrman in wondering if Paul in the author of The Gospel of Matthew would have gotten along. https://ehrmanblog.org/is-paul-at-odds-with-matthew/
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Old 06-08-2018, 06:07 AM   #162
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Some Palestinian Jews hoped for a prophet like Moses who would bring Salvation from their hated oppressors the Romans and those who collaborated with them as well as present the law of God. Moses had prophesied of another Prophet like himself in Deuteronomy 18: 15 to 19. In Matthew Jesus is the new Moses. He doesn't replace the the Old Law rather he's the true and final interpreter of what the earlier Moses had recorded in the Torah. The law which Jesus gives doesn't conflict with the law of Moses rather it is its fulfillment ( 5:17). The followers of Jesus must follow the law of Moses by understanding it in the way directed by the new Moses Jesus the Messiah. I join Bart Ehrman in wondering if Paul in the author of The Gospel of Matthew would have gotten along. https://ehrmanblog.org/is-paul-at-odds-with-matthew/
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Old 06-08-2018, 06:31 AM   #163
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Here's the whole thing :

Is Paul at Odds with Matthew?
In yesterday’s post I indicated that I really very much wish that we could have some of the writings produced by Paul’s opponents in Galatia. They believed that in order to be a follower of Jesus, a person had to accept and follow the Law of Moses as laid out in the Jewish Scriptures. Men were to be circumcised to join the people of God; men and women were, evidently, to adopt a Jewish lifestyle. Presumably that meant keeping kosher, observing the Sabbath, and so on. Anyone who didn’t do this was not really a member of the people of God, since to be one of God’s people meant following the law that God had given.

Paul was incensed at this interpretation of the faith and insisted with extraordinary vehemence that it was completely wrong. The gentile followers of Jesus were not, absolutely not, supposed to become Jewish. Anyone who thought so rendered the death of Jesus worthless. It was only that death, and the resurrection, that made a person right with God. Nothing else. Certainly not following the Torah.

I often wonder whether Paul and the author of the Gospel of Matthew would have gotten along.

Matthew’s Gospel was probably…

Matthew’s Gospel was probably written about thirty years after Paul wrote his letter to the Galatians; Galatians is usually dated to the mid 50s, Matthew to around 80-85 CE. We don’t know who the author of Matthew was, apart from the fact that he was obviously a highly educated Greek-speaking Christian living outside of Palestine. His book is often located to Antioch Syria, but in my view that is simply a guess based on flimsy evidence. Still, it certainly *may* have been written Antioch, a city with a large Jewish population and a burgeoning Christian church.

Matthew, like the other Gospel writers, did not produce his account simply out of antiquarian interests, to inform his readers what happened 55 years earlier in the days of Jesus. His is not a disinterested biography or an objective history. It is a “Gospel.” In other words, it is intended to proclaim the “good news” about Jesus and the salvation that he brings. When Jesus teaches something in this Gospel, Matthew expects that the teaching will be relevant to his readers, that they will want to do what Jesus says.

There is no doubt that Matthew would agree with Paul that it was the death and resurrection of Jesus that brought salvation to the world. The Gospel is not *entirely* about Jesus’ death and resurrection. But it is largely about that. It is 28 chapters long, and the last 8 chapters are focused exclusively on what happened during the last week of Jesus’ life in Jerusalem, including the crucifixion and resurrection. This is clearly the climax of the story. And for Matthew, as for his predecessor Mark, the death of Jesus is seen as “a ransom for many” (Matt. 20:28). It is through his death that he “will save his people from their sins” (Matt. 1:21).

So Matthew would agree with Paul there. But so would Paul’s opponents in Galatia. The controversy with the Galatian opposition was not over whether Jesus’ death brings salvation. It was over whether the followers of Jesus, who accept that death, need to keep the Jewish law. And it does seem to me that this is where Paul and Matthew split company. Again, remember that when Matthew decides what to present about Jesus’ life in the Gospel it is not simply so that people can know “what really happened” in the past. It is so that the life and teachings of Jesus can direct the lives of his followers in the present.

And what does Jesus say about the Jewish law in Matthew? He says that his followers have to keep it. One of the key passages is something that you will NEVER find in the writings of Paul.

Do not suppose that I came to destroy the law or the prophets. I came not to destroy but to fulfil. For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away not one iota or one stroke of a letter will pass away from the law until all is fulfilled. And so, whoever looses one of the least of these commandments and teaches others in this way will be called least in the kingdom of God, but whoever does and teaches the law will be called great in the kingdom of heaven. For I say to you that if your righteousness does not exceed that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will not enter into the kingdom of heaven.

This is a really interesting passage. Does it contradict Paul that the followers of Jesus were *not* to keep the law? It seems to.

Now someone *could* say that here Jesus is saying simply that the entire law has to be in effect until he dies (“until all is fulfilled”). But Jesus is saying more than that. His followers must do and teach the law. None of it will pass away until the world is destroyed (“till heaven and earth pass away”). Again, Matthew is not saying this so his readers will have a good history lesson about the Savior of the world and what he taught his disciples. He is including this passage for the same reason he includes all his passages, to teach his readers how they are to believe and live. Jesus in this passage does *not* say, “Keep the law until I die.” He says he did not come to destroy the law. It is still in effect. And will be as long as the earth lasts. His followers have to keep it.

After this Jesus launches into his “antitheses,” where he indicates what the law says and explains its fuller, deeper meaning. The law says don’t kill; to fulfill it you should not engage someone with wrath. The law says not to take someone’s spouse; to fulfill it you should not want to do so. The law says to make punishments fit the crimes (an eye for an eye a tooth for a tooth; not a head for an eye or a body for a tooth); to fulfill it you should show extreme mercy and not punish another for harm done to you. And so on.

I really don’t think that Matthew’s Jesus did not mean what he says. He gives no hint that following the law this closely is impossible to do. He seems to think it is possible. God gave a law. You should follow it. Scrupulously. Even more scrupulously than the righteous scribes and Pharisees. If you don’t, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven.

That’s a tall order. And in my judgment it seems very much opposed to Paul’s views, who insists that *his* readers not think that they must follow the law.
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:29 AM   #164
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As I've come to see it so far, the early Christians were Jews, and at least the educated elite were Hellenized Christian Jews ; reading and referencing the Koine Greek Septuagint.

But there came a split in the two types of Jewish Christians. Some were called Judaizers, and some were called Hellenizers ; in Paul's terms, basically, the circumcisers, and the uncircumcisers. James, the brother of Jesus, was an example of the Judaizers. Paul an example of the Hellenizers, and prolly their leader.

That the Hellenizers won out is without question. Or rather, that the Judaizers lost out is without question. That's obvious. Maybe six of one, half a dozen of the other. I don't know.

There's power in numbers. The uncircumcisers, the Hellenists, won out. Paul proved to be the top dog apostle, over James, Peter, John, and prolly over the rest of the "silent Bob" disciples. The different gospel Paul rebuked in Galatians was that of the original Jewish Christians, the Judaizers, and they lost out.

Was that the first wrong turn in the history of the Christian movement? It is said that history is written by the victors. And they, Christians today, that aren't Jewish at all, certainly can't be trusted to offer an unbiased answer.

Was Hellenization the beginning of poor, poor, Christianity? Should Paul have won out over the original disciples?

Since they were all Hellenized Jewish Christians I guess it couldn't be helped.

I guess those pesky smarty-pants Greeks won again.
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:53 AM   #165
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Quote:
Originally Posted by awareness View Post
Is Paul at Odds with Matthew?
Zeek,

I think this question is misleading. It was Jesus in the gospels (including Matthew) that violated the Sabbath day based on "the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath". Then it was Peter who violated the prohibition of eating with the Gentiles and baptized them into the church.

It is also clear that they were not required by Peter or by the Lord's vision, to be circumcised first. Instead the Vision said that they had already been cleansed and Peter understood that to mean that the Lord's redemptive work on the cross opened the New Covenant to them.

This was then confirmed in a council headed up by James. All of the so called "Judaizers" got to weigh in and everyone agreed that the Lord's redemptive work applied to Gentiles who were not required to be circumcised or convert to Judaism first. None of this had anything to do with Paul whose ministry came later. Since circumcision in the OT was simply the "signature of God on your flesh" that you had a covenant with God it was clearly not required when Peter baptized the gentiles.

Therefore, what is the sign in our flesh that we have a covenant with God if not circumcision? That is the question that Paul answers. He is not the one who told us Gentiles don't need to be circumcised, that was already decided. He merely explained how this decision was consistent with the Bible.

Since most agree that the Gospel of Mark is essentially the Gospel of Peter and that there is a very strong correlation between Mark and Matthew this seems to be much to do about nothing.
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Old 06-08-2018, 09:38 AM   #166
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I don't know that it matters, but your response should be to zeek not me.

This :
Quote:
Originally Posted by zeek
Is Paul at Odds with Matthew?
Not this:
Quote:
Originally Posted by awareness
Is Paul at Odds with Matthew?
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Old 06-08-2018, 07:16 PM   #167
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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
Zeek,

I think this question is misleading. It was Jesus in the gospels (including Matthew) that violated the Sabbath day based on "the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath". Then it was Peter who violated the prohibition of eating with the Gentiles and baptized them into the church.

It is also clear that they were not required by Peter or by the Lord's vision, to be circumcised first. Instead the Vision said that they had already been cleansed and Peter understood that to mean that the Lord's redemptive work on the cross opened the New Covenant to them.

This was then confirmed in a council headed up by James. All of the so called "Judaizers" got to weigh in and everyone agreed that the Lord's redemptive work applied to Gentiles who were not required to be circumcised or convert to Judaism first. None of this had anything to do with Paul whose ministry came later. Since circumcision in the OT was simply the "signature of God on your flesh" that you had a covenant with God it was clearly not required when Peter baptized the gentiles.

Therefore, what is the sign in our flesh that we have a covenant with God if not circumcision? That is the question that Paul answers. He is not the one who told us Gentiles don't need to be circumcised, that was already decided. He merely explained how this decision was consistent with the Bible.

Since most agree that the Gospel of Mark is essentially the Gospel of Peter and that there is a very strong correlation between Mark and Matthew this seems to be much to do about nothing.
It isn't a leading question much less misleading one. All that is required is an up or down vote plus the evidence to back up your choice. I suppose it might lead someone to think and possibly do some research. It would only be misleading to someone who supposed that the Bible represents absolute authority that should not be questioned.

Those questions about the Sabbath seem to be matters of interpretation of law not it's abrogation. The sabbath laws were ambiguous so interpretations varied. So, for instance, according to Rabbi Akiba one should not desecrate the Sabbath for things that can be done the day before or the day after but no desecration exists when such a possibility is not offered. Like Akiba's, Jesus' interpretation fits within the context of Judaism.

In Galatians 2:16, Paul says that no flesh shall be justified by the works of the law. Matthew 16:17 says for the son of man will come in the glory of his father with his angels and then he will reward each according to his works. How do you reconcile those verses? It's not unwarranted to question whether Paul and the author of Matthew would have been at odds if they had been contemporaneous and aware of one another. See post # 163 for Ehrman's more detailed elaboration of the problem that Awareness kindly provided.

The document that we call Mark doesn't have the author's name on it. That it was written by Mark a follower of Peter is matter of tradition begun by Papias. Eusebius mentions it centuries later, but few historical scholars accept it as conclusive.
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Old 06-09-2018, 02:25 AM   #168
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeek View Post
It isn't a leading question much less misleading one. All that is required is an up or down vote plus the evidence to back up your choice. I suppose it might lead someone to think and possibly do some research. It would only be misleading to someone who supposed that the Bible represents absolute authority that should not be questioned.
In the post #163 he presents this position spelled out in Galatians as being Paul's. That is what I felt was misleading since it ignores the history of this question. It was decided in Acts, in a council that included James and Peter but not Paul that "no other burden" would be put upon the Gentiles. Hence, not requiring the Gentiles to be circumcised and not separating the Jewish believers from Gentile believers is not a result of Paul's teaching, but was decided in that council. This is what I found misleading in his post.


Quote:
Originally Posted by zeek View Post
In Galatians 2:16, Paul says that no flesh shall be justified by the works of the law. Matthew 16:17 says for the son of man will come in the glory of his father with his angels and then he will reward each according to his works.
In Galatians Paul also refers to the "works of the flesh" and the "fruit of the spirit". He says "whatever a man sows this shall he also reap". The reaping is our "reward" or our "judgement". Therefore I would compare Matt 16:17 with Galatians 6, not Galatians 2. In Matthew we are rewarded for our work, in Galatians we reap what we sow. I would also use Matt 6 to compare with Matt 16 "this is the work of God that you believe in Him whom He has sent". So then, to interpret being rewarded according to his works as being different from "believing in Him whom God has sent" is contrary to the book of Matthew. Once again, I don't think post #163 does a fair job of presenting Matthew or Galatians and is therefore misleading on that point as well.
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Old 06-09-2018, 06:37 AM   #169
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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
In the post #163 he presents this position spelled out in Galatians as being Paul's. That is what I felt was misleading since it ignores the history of this question. It was decided in Acts, in a council that included James and Peter but not Paul that "no other burden" would be put upon the Gentiles. Hence, not requiring the Gentiles to be circumcised and not separating the Jewish believers from Gentile believers is not a result of Paul's teaching, but was decided in that council. This is what I found misleading in his post.




In Galatians Paul also refers to the "works of the flesh" and the "fruit of the spirit". He says "whatever a man sows this shall he also reap". The reaping is our "reward" or our "judgement". Therefore I would compare Matt 16:17 with Galatians 6, not Galatians 2. In Matthew we are rewarded for our work, in Galatians we reap what we sow. I would also use Matt 6 to compare with Matt 16 "this is the work of God that you believe in Him whom He has sent". So then, to interpret being rewarded according to his works as being different from "believing in Him whom God has sent" is contrary to the book of Matthew. Once again, I don't think post #163 does a fair job of presenting Matthew or Galatians and is therefore misleading on that point as well.
There are number of inconsistencies between Paul's account in Galatians and the account given in Acts which can only be explained speculatively since there are no other contemporaneous historical accounts of the controversy. {Acts was written decades after Paul's letter according to the estimates of most scholars and without the benefit of direct participation in the events that Paul had.} Similarly it's the task of the apologist to reconcile the differences between Paul's gospel and the one presented in the Book of Matthew. All of that goes beyond the scope of Ehrman's topic on that particular blog entry.
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Old 06-09-2018, 07:50 AM   #170
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The document that we call Mark doesn't have the author's name on it. That it was written by Mark a follower of Peter is matter of tradition begun by Papias. Eusebius mentions it centuries later, but few historical scholars accept it as conclusive.
This impulse to link Mark to an eyewitness, is telling. I think we (the Royal Christian we) tend to see the Christian movement, so to speak, as starting out as its most perfection to as Jesus made it.

Isn't that the standard we're seeking to measure from, to determine if and when Christianity became poor?

But that state of Christianity, the earliest stage, or state, of Christianity, is hard to get at ; so it's been used by "Christian" con men time and time again -- The Recovery, for instance -- down thru the ages.

So it's just easier to believe and conclude that the gospels are speaking of eyewitness accounts, to what Jesus did and said, and we're getting the true Jesus, that founded the purest form of Christian teachings.

This leads to an effort to be that pure form of Christianity. The RCC, for example, claims to go back to Peter. The Baptists cooked up Landmarkism, that traces the Baptist Christians back thru a true ribbon down to their founder, Jesus. And we all know of The Recovery.

This idea that the Christian movement strayed from it's purest form, based upon its founder, is an easy sell. And we (the Royal we again) buy it because it sounds good. Of course we want what Jesus founded.

The problem is that that earliest model of Christianity, straight from the founder, was to be a Jewish Christian.

The Hellenist Jewish Christians fixed that. Or broke it. We haven't determined which yet.
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:37 AM   #171
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Originally Posted by awareness View Post
This impulse to link Mark to an eyewitness, is telling. I think we (the Royal Christian we) tend to see the Christian movement, so to speak, as starting out as its most perfection to as Jesus made it.

Isn't that the standard we're seeking to measure from, to determine if and when Christianity became poor?

But that state of Christianity, the earliest stage, or state, of Christianity, is hard to get at ; so it's been used by "Christian" con men time and time again -- The Recovery, for instance -- down thru the ages.

So it's just easier to believe and conclude that the gospels are speaking of eyewitness accounts, to what Jesus did and said, and we're getting the true Jesus, that founded the purest form of Christian teachings.

This leads to an effort to be that pure form of Christianity. The RCC, for example, claims to go back to Peter. The Baptists cooked up Landmarkism, that traces the Baptist Christians back thru a true ribbon down to their founder, Jesus. And we all know of The Recovery.

This idea that the Christian movement strayed from it's purest form, based upon its founder, is an easy sell. And we (the Royal we again) buy it because it sounds good. Of course we want what Jesus founded.

The problem is that that earliest model of Christianity, straight from the founder, was to be a Jewish Christian.

The Hellenist Jewish Christians fixed that. Or broke it. We haven't determined which yet.
One is free to accept the traditions that have been passed on by the historical church. But then of course one isn't going only by the scriptures. And one has to decide how much of the historical church tradition is "Christianity". The result is that different schools of thought, denominations and individuals cherry pick the parts of church history that they like. Hence the many denominations including the local church movement. I don't see any way to get around it. Obviously one is going to claim divine inspiration for their viewpoint. But as far as the Church of all believers is concerned that perpetuates the problem.
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Old 06-10-2018, 08:53 AM   #172
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One is free to accept the traditions that have been passed on by the historical church. But then of course one isn't going only by the scriptures. And one has to decide how much of the historical church tradition is "Christianity". The result is that different schools of thought, denominations and individuals cherry pick the parts of church history that they like. Hence the many denominations including the local church movement. I don't see any way to get around it. Obviously one is going to claim divine inspiration for their viewpoint. But as far as the Church of all believers is concerned that perpetuates the problem.
In other words simply be aware that when you interpret the Gospels as the works of the apostles Matthew and John or their immediate followers Mark or Luke you are not following the Protestant hermeneutical rule of faith which says that scripture is to be interpreted by scripture. Rather you are following the practice of traditional Christianity. Not that there was anything wrong with that except to one who strictly follows only the Bible like Witness Lee and other fundamentalists claim to do. I have yet to meet anyone who really does.
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