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1  Theology / Apologetics / Re:Scriptural question; on: August 08, 2003, 09:07:28 PM
Mmmmmmm! If God had forsaken Christ, what do you make of these Scriptures: 2Timothy 2:13 and 2Corinthians 5:18-19?

2Co 5:18  And all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation; 19  whereas God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and putting the word of reconciliation in us.

Now, if our Father was in Christ while Jesus hung on the cross paying our debt, how could He have forsaken His Son? The word, "forsaken" in Matthew 27:46 and Mark 15:34 is egkataleipo (S.1459) from S.1722 and S.2641; to leave behind in some place, that is, (in a good sense) let remain over, or (in a bad one) to desert: - forsake, leave.

While I might understand those who may say that the Father let His Son remain on the cross, this is not what is taught today by most Christian "scholars". They teach that God abandoned Christ. They teach that God turned His back on Christ. Not only does this not fit the character of God, but the idea is emphatically denied in Scripture. All one has to do is search a little to find the truth.

Pro 25:2  It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.

It seems to me that modern theology is lame and lazy. God cannot deny Himself as 2Timothy 2:13 says. We still worship only ONE God. Do we not? He may be revealed in three separate Personages, but our faith is in ONE God. If God cannot deny Himself, how could the Father have abandoned Christ while He hung dying on the cross?

The word for "deny" in 2Timothy 2:13 is, "arneomai" (S.720); perhaps from S.1 (as a negative particle) and the middle of S.4483; to contradict, that is, disavow, reject, abnegate: - deny, refuse.

Remembering that modern theology does not allow "forsaken" to mean to "let remain" in the case of Christ on the cross, how does one "desert, leave behind, forsake" (S.1459) and not "reject, deny, refuse" (S.720) at the same time? If a close friend or loved one deserted me, I would have to say that they were also rejecting me. To me it says the same thing.

I personally knew saints who have lain in bed dying and singing old hymns that have meant so much to them throughout the years. Jesus began His final journey with a hymn (Matthew 26:30). It isn't a big reach for me to believe He was ending His journey in the same way.

You all may believe what you please about the character of our God, but I for one do not believe He forsook His Son for a moment. The Scriptures deny such a doctrine, but as I said: believe what you wish.


2  Theology / Apologetics / Re:Scriptural question; on: July 24, 2003, 09:07:04 PM
Greetings BDoggy,
This question was asked on another thread on the Prophecy and Current Events Board. I'll tell you what I wrote to my Moslim friend.

Your question is: When Jesus was on the cross and He said, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" what exactly did he mean?

Many Christians believe that this was one of Jesus' weakest moments and it was His flesh crying out. For this to be true we would have to say that Jesus was not always filled with the Spirit, and that there were times when He almost gave up. For this to be so, we would have to say that Jesus was never really God in the flesh.

Jesus hung on the cross from 9AM until nearly 6PM. We know He was alive at least until 3PM which is the time of the Evening Sacrifice. At the time of the killing of the Passover lamb (a ram's horn was blown at the Temple just as the priest was killing the lamb) Christ yelled out "It is Finished!" and then said to the Father "Father, into your hands, I commit my Spirit." He bowed His head and died.

All morning and into the afternoon He was mocked and accused of lying, that God was not His Father. The priests wagged their heads, saying to one another, "Let God save Him, if He will have Him." They said many blasphemous things to Him, but He said nothing (Matthew 27:38-44; Mark 15:29-32). Then around 3 PM, just prior to the slaying of the Passover Lamb, Jesus repeated the words of Psalm 22. It begins: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"

You have probably read Psalm 22, but have you ever pondered the words while thinking about Jesus on the cross?  It speaks of one suffering and dying, but the psalmist looks for a resurrection. Most of the psalms were prayers. Men often begin to pray in despair, but in the presence of God they are encouraged, and by the end of the prayer they have new hope. The Psalms were also hymns - prayers that were sung to God in worship. Jesus was singing a hymn to His Father expressing His trust in Him that He would be raised from the dead. Think about it; just before Jesus died, He was singing a Psalm of faith to God. This particular Psalm would also answer all His accusers, because all day they had been taunting Him saying that God had indeed forsaken Him. The Priests knew the Scriptures and many of them would realize what He was doing. In essence, He was repeating what He had been telling them from the very beginning of His ministry. They asked for a sign, and He repeated over and over that no sign would be given except for the Sign of Jonah. Just as he was three days and three nights in the belly of a fish, Christ would be buried for three days and nights and rise again. This Psalm testifies of Christ trust in His Father to raise Him, just as Jesus had claimed He would from the very beginning.
3  Theology / Prophecy - Current Events / Re:easy questions for christians on: July 22, 2003, 10:50:19 AM
Greetings Allinall,
He is my all in all as well.  Smiley  It is good to speak with a brother in Christ. I have not posted here in a number of weeks. Thank you for your post.

I never really considered the number of men that came to seize Jesus, but your post caused me to search my Bible helps. Here is what I found in Adam Clark:

A band - spira, The band or troop. Some think that the spira was the same as the Roman cohort, and was the tenth part of a legion, which consisted sometimes of 4200, and sometimes of 5000 foot. But Raphelius, on Mat_27:27, has clearly proved, from Polybius, that the spira was no more than a tenth of the fourth part of a legion. And as the number of the legion was uncertain, and their divisions not at all equal, no person can tell how many the band or spira contained. See many curious particulars in Raphelius on this point, vol. i. p. 351, edit. 1747. This band was probably those Roman soldiers given by the governor for the defense of the temple; and the officers were those who belonged to the Sanhedrin.
With lanterns and torches - With these they had intended to search the corners and caverns, provided Christ had hidden himself; for they could not have needed them for any other purpose, it being now the fourteenth day of the moon's age, in the month Nisan, and consequently she appeared full and bright. The weapons mentioned here were probably no other than clubs, staves, and instruments of that kind, as we may gather from Mat_26:55; Mar_14:48; Luk_22:52. The swords mentioned by the other evangelists were probably those of the Roman soldiers; the clubs and staves belonged to the chief priest's officers.

Gill makes reference to at least 500 men and perhaps 1000 men, but I agree with Clark that no one can tell how many really came. We can be assured it was a significant number, enough to impress others with fear and to stay away.

Concerning your thoughts about the men falling back, I agree that something happened here but I cannot at this point prove what you say. This very thing has been argued by others in discussion groups, but those who oppose your idea are quick to point out other Scripture where "I am" is used but cannot refer to Jesus being God. I have spent a great deal of time taking the position that Jesus is God and arguing that point, but I like to use Scripture that my opponents have trouble refuting. This Scripture in John 18 is interesting. I keep going back to it, but I need something else to go along with it before I can agree 100% with you that that is what it means. To be sure "something" happened. I would like to say Jesus was saying "I AM" in the sense that He is God, but at this point I hold back and wait for God to add to it.

Concerning Judas, this is one of my favorite topics in recent months. Why do you suppose he betrayed Jesus? Why was he stealing from the fund (John 12:6)? Why didn't the others detect that he was a thief? He certainly didn't steal to buy the most stylish Sabbath clothes. He couldn't have been keeping a woman. These things would be too obvious and could not be hidden. He was not stealing to give to the poor (John 12:5), for Christ would have agreed to give all if this was Judas' heart. Why did he steal? Who or what was he supporting?

Of course I could be wrong but I do have an idea. The women who followed Jesus supported him from their substance (Luke 8:1-3). It can be shown the twelve were divided into three groups who probably had differing responsibilities. Judas and his group carried the money. Of course Jesus knew what Judas was doing, but it missed the attention of the rest. It is said that Judas was Simon's son (John 6:71; 13:6). This is revealed in a "matter of fact" manner, giving the impression that we should know who Simon is. There are only a few men named Simon recorded in the Gospels, only one has a possible connection with Judas. That would be Simon the Zealot. If you look at the three places where the twelve apostles are named, you will find that they are mentioned in only slightly varying order. Peter is always first; Philip is always mentioned fifth, and James (the less) is always mentioned ninth. The others vary within their little group but they never go from group to group. I believe that Jesus was teaching the apostles about "Body-life" like Paul mentions in Romans 12 and 1Corinthians 12. Each group had their specific responsibilities. Moreover, Jesus seemed to keep families within the same little group. For example Peter and Andrew were brother and so were James and John. James (the less) and I believe Jude Thaddeus were brothers and so on. Therefore, I believe that the Simon who was the father of Judas was Simon the Zealot.

If this is so, Judas being young and idealistic, may very well have been a Zealot as well. He may have been following in his father's steps. Judas could have been supporting the political efforts of the Zealot movement. I think that Judas thought he could manipulate Jesus and perhaps events surrounding His life. I also believe that somehow one or two of the women found out that Judas was stealing. I think this is why Mary anointed Jesus feet in John 12 and then later his head in Mark 14. She poured very expensive ointment upon Him. Judas was beside himself greedy for the money that he could have had if it were sold. It wasn't until Jesus was anointed the second time that he decided to betray Jesus. I think he realized that the gig was up and it would not be long before all would know that he was stealing to support the Zealots.

The idea of betrayal was another way to support his political aspirations. John the Baptist was held in prison for two years before he was beheaded. There was no reason to suspect that Jesus would be immediately killed. I believe he thought that even the women who found out that he was stealing would give money to him to support the Zealots in an effort to take control of the nation and free Jesus.

Well, I don't want to go on and on. I probably have done too much already. I tend to get carried away in my enthusiasm. I could be wrong here, but I offer it to you as "food for thought." Sorry for the long post.  Smiley

God bless,

4  Theology / Prophecy - Current Events / Re:easy questions for christians on: July 22, 2003, 03:23:20 AM
To "youandmeforever81" cont'd
I thought I'd break up this long post in an effort to make it easier to read.

I shall now try to answer the second part of question 2, why did Jesus pray saying "why have you forsaken me?" This, too, is a common error of many of my brethren who claim Christ as their Savior. Too many believe Christ was weak and almost gave up. How anyone could read the life of Christ recorded in the four Gospel accounts and believe such trash I'll never know. Of course, you have an excuse. You don't claim Jesus as your Savior. I am speaking here of my own brethren. Jesus hung on the cross from 9AM until nearly 6PM. We know He was alive at least until 3PM which is the time of the Evening Sacrifice. At the time of the killing of the Passover lamb (a ram's horn was blown at the Temple just as the priest was killing the lamb) Christ yelled out "It is Finished!" and then said to the Father "Father, into your hands, I commit my Spirit." He bowed His head and died.

All morning and into the afternoon He was being accused of lying, that God was not His Father. The priests wagged their heads, saying to one another, "Let God save Him, if He would have Him." They said many blasphemous things to Him, but He said nothing. Then around 3 PM, just prior to the slaying of the Passover Lamb, Jesus repeated the words of Psalm 22. It begins: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Have you ever read Psalm 22? It speaks of one suffering and dying, but the psalmist looks for a resurrection. Often the psalms were prayers. Men often begin to pray in despair, but in the presence of God they are encouraged, and by the end of the prayer they have new hope. The Psalms were also hymns. They were prayers that were sung to God. Jesus was singing a hymn to His Father expressing His trust in Him that He would be raised from the dead. This doesn't sound like Jesus was despairing, does it? Too often we read our own words into what the Bible says. We need to let the Bible, which professes to be the Word of God, to speak for itself. Just before Jesus died on the cross, He was singing a Psalm of faith to God. This particular Psalm would also answer all His accusers, because all day they had been taunting Him saying that God had indeed forsaken Him. The Priests knew the Scriptures and some would realize what He was doing. In essence, He was repeating what He said from the very beginning of His ministry. They asked for a sign, and He repeated over and over that no sign would be given except for the Sign of Jonah. Just as he was three days and three nights in the belly of a fish, Christ would be buried for three days and nights and rise again. This Psalm testifies of Christ trust in God to raise Him, just as Jesus had claimed He would from the very beginning.

Your third question concerned whether Jesus' prayer in Gethsemane was answered. It was, just as I said in question 2a above.

Your fourth question concerned Mary Magdalene "massaging" Jesus' dead body. I believe you are missing the point here. The word is "anoint." Why you bring in your own word here I don't know. The word used in the text is "aleipho" and means "to anoint." In answer to you question concerning three days, it is not normal for Jews to clean, dress and anoint a body after it has been dead for three days. Nevertheless, the Roman guard prevented anyone from breaking the seal on the tomb until the three days and three nights were complete. The women had to wait until they were allowed to handle the body of their Savior. The fact that Jesus was in another man's grave testifies to the idea that they intended to move Him when they were allowed.

Your fifth question concerns why Mary thought the resurrected Jesus was a gardener, and you asked if resurrected people look like gardeners. I don't know - what does a gardener look like? I like to garden and so does my wife, yet we do not look at all alike. Is a gardener supposed to look a certain way? I usually wear a hat  while I garden to keep the sun off my bald head. Are you implying that Jesus was wearing a hat? I am not certain about the implication of your question or if, in fact, you are serious or delight yourself in making fun of the sound of the Scriptures. If you are serious, please be a little more plain.

Thank you for your questions. I hope you will now answer mine.


5  Theology / Prophecy - Current Events / Re:easy questions for christians on: July 22, 2003, 03:14:31 AM
Greetings "youandmeforever81"

Wow! Your username is really unique. Does it have some special meaning? I am intrigued.  Smiley .

You have some questions that people have been asking for quite some time. I hope I am able to enlighten you a bit, since Christianity is not your chosen faith. It is good to ask questions when one desires to grow in knowledge. Are you asking because you wish to grow in knowledge or do you believe these questions somehow reveal Jesus to be less than what we Christians believe?

Well, in any case, I shall try to answer the questions you put forth. I also have a few questions for you. Who is your Savior and how are you saved? Do you know you are saved and can you loose what salvation you have? What happens to you after you die and what do you look forward to in eternity?

Your first question: Why did they (the Pharisees and priests) hire Judas to lead them to Jesus? It is my understanding that Judas went to them and offered his services (Mark 14:10-11). They were not planning to kill Jesus until after the Passover Feast (Matthew 26:4-5), but when Judas came to them, they changed their plans to make the most of the unexpected opportunity. Since they did not know where Jesus was staying during the night, they needed someone who was privy to such knowledge to lead them so they could take Him privately. Jesus was popular, so they had to act swiftly and under the cover of night.

Your second question is really two questions in one. The first part is this: Since Christians believe that Jesus wanted to die on the cross for the redemption of mankind and the forgiveness of their sins, why did He ask to run away and for God to take the cup from Him? Your question is worded a little differently, but I believe that this is the sense of it. If I am wrong don't hesitate to correct me.

You have a great misunderstanding of the character of Jesus. This is certainly understandable since you are not one of His followers. Nevertheless, I have to admit that many of His followers stumble at this question. Many believe that Jesus was trying to get out of a tight spot here. This of course is not so. Let me explain.

For your implication to be true, there would be a great many contradictory events surrounding Jesus' agony in Gethsemane. For example, at the Passover meal Jesus said that He looked forward to the Passover meal He would eat with His disciples just before He would die. He even sang hymns and prepared the disciples for the days without Him. Does this sound like someone trying to escape what was about to happen? For a year Jesus had been teaching the disciples that He would die the death of crucifixion. If He was truly asking the Father to take that cup from Him, He was praying that His Father would make Him a false prophet. This would definitely not be according to the will of God, yet Jesus said that God always heard His prayers (John 11:41-42). We know from Scripture that God hears only those prayers that are according to His will (1John 5:14). Therefore, if the Father always hears Jesus, then Jesus never asks anything that is not according to the will of God. You see why your understanding of this Scripture (Matthew 26:39) cannot be correct? You are assuming you know what Jesus was praying for. You are assuming that the "cup" He asked to be removed was His dying on the cross. Herein lay your error. Nevertheless, I can understand why you think this way, because you have not been taught by His Spirit. What I do not understand is how so many who claim to be Christian would think that their Savior was acting the coward and seeking a way out.

The book of Luke is a great Gospel account. It begins with prayer in the Temple and ends with prayer in the Temple. Many of Jesus' prayers are recorded there. Each time Jesus prayed something significant happened. For example it was immediately after Jesus was speaking with the Father that Peter told Jesus he believe He was the Christ (Luke 9:18-20). Jesus said that this was significant in that Peter's answer was evidence that he was listening to the voice of God in his heart (Matthew 16:16-17). This is important to realize, if you are going to understand what Jesus was praying for in Luke 22:41-42. Why did Jesus keep going back to the three disciples, Peter, James and John, when He prayed for the cup to be removed? What was Jesus looking for when He kept coming to them?

Something happened between their leaving the upper room and their arrival on the Mount of Olives. Notice that Jesus says that He was extremely sorrowful (Matthew 26:38) and desired that the three would "watch" with Him. Scripture says that God laid the sins of all mankind upon Jesus (Isaiah 53:4-6). Sin hides God's face from us and when we sin often we do not have the sense of God's presence (Isaiah 59:2). This is what happened to Jesus. God laid our sins upon Jesus and for the first time Jesus felt alone. He had no sense of the Father's presence. Of course, He knew that the Father didn't leave Him, but sense of His Father's presence was lost because of our sins that were laid upon Him. This is what Jesus was asking when He asked for the cup to be removed. He longed for the sense of His Father's presence. He prayed for it to be restored and kept going to the three He asked to pray with Him looking for God to speak through them. When they kept giving in to the flesh and dozing off, the Father finally answered Jesus' prayer though an angel (Luke 22:43). The presence of the angel strengthened Jesus, because He was able to see the presence of the Father in the appearance of the angel. God always answered the prayers of Jesus (John 11:42). Not one of His words ever fell to the ground.

6  Theology / Apologetics / Re:Where were the witnesses? on: June 12, 2003, 08:44:18 PM
Yehudi, Shalom!
I do not know if you are still looking at this tread or not, but I'll try to address those things that trouble you.

Now, concerning the red/green van and the bloody/unhurt limo driver, do you honestly claim that the Gospel accounts are so blatantly contradictory? Instead of hypothetical color let's get to the nitty-gritty and throw out some Scriptures that contradict and I'll try to answer your claim. I have read all four resurrection narratives and am unable to see the contradictory statements that you claim are there. Please be a bit less vague.

Quote Yehudi:
"It is known that Christians often defend apparent inconsistencies in the four resurrection narratives by explaining it as if it were a car-wreck -- four witnesses who saw the same event will tell the story over differently, from their own perspective, as given in the example above. How can one honestly appeal to this point of view when the New Testament by its own admission tells us that the authors of the Gospels did not witness the events themselves?"

 Hmmmm… It is known by whom that Christians often defend apparent inconsistencies…as if it were a car wreck? I have never heard it explained that way and definitely not in the light that you put it in. Moreover, I see no inconsistencies. I compare them together and see one adding information that others lack. No one account gives the complete story.

I have never appealed to the account of the resurrection in the way you have said that Christians often do. As for the authors, according to the historical record Mark wrote what Peter (a witness) said, just as the court stenographer might do. John wrote the Gospel that bears his name. Matthew is a composite account probably by the eleven and was used to disciple newly baptized Jewish Christians. Luke, by his own admission went to first hand witnesses to get their accounts and recorded what they told him, much the same as an historical biographer would do. I see nothing wrong with how the accounts have come down to me. If you can be more direct in what you see as faulty, present your case.

Concerning the 500 brethren witnessing the resurrected Jesus, you make out as though it was some myth like your "Amazing Flying Man" simply because the Bible does not list their names.

Who counted the bodies after Samson killed a thousand men with the jawbone of an ass? Is that a myth too? We neither know their names nor do we know the name of the one who counted the bodies. Yet, I believe the account. Moses records that God created the universe in 6 days. No one was there to make sure it was not 6 ages or 10 billion years. Nevertheless Moses records the voice of God saying 6 days. I am simple enough to believe it. Is this a myth, as well?

The Bible alludes to the 500 meeting the resurrected Christ  in other accounts. The only meeting that Jesus "advertised" He would appear after His resurrection was in Galilee. If you were told someone you loved and respected (or feared and hated) would appear to you at a certain place after he was dead - but only if you were at that place at the time appointed would you be there? Speaking for myself, the curiosity would be unbearable. I would have to be there.

On the night He was betrayed Jesus announced to His disciples:
Matthew 26:32  But after I am risen again, I will go before you into Galilee.

At the tomb the angels told the women to go and remind the apostles of their scheduled meeting with Christ:
Matthew 28:7  And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you.

If that were not enough, Jesus also appeared to these same women and commanded them to tell the apostles to be at the scheduled meeting:
Matthew 28:10  Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me.

The Bible specifically states that the eleven were there at the meeting, but do you honestly think that the women and anyone else who heard about the resurrection and the scheduled meeting would not have been there?
Matthew 28:16  Then the eleven disciples went away into Galilee, into a mountain where Jesus had appointed them. 17  And when they saw him, they worshipped him: but some doubted

Verse 17 says that some doubted. Who might that be; some of the eleven? Why would any of them doubt. Tradition says they all died a martyrs death, besides they were all elated trying to convince Thomas that they had seen Jesus alive (John 20:25). Who doubted? Is it reading too much into the Scripture to say that maybe some of the people at the publicized event were other than the eleven? Perhaps it was some of the 500. Perhaps more than 500 saw, but only 500 believed, because Paul calls them brethren. Maybe some who saw Jesus were not there for the truth. After all, the chief priests in Jerusalem knew of the resurrection, but paid off the guard to keep it quiet (Matthew 28:11-15). They were not interested in the truth. Were they?

Quote Yehudi:
"Why didn't the 500 witnesses ever come forward to give testimony? Doesn't that mean that Christianity can't prove that there were witnesses?"

What makes you think that they did not come forward? Who were the many witnesses that Luke spoke of in Luke 1:1? Who were the Pharisees who believed in Acts 15:5? Were they all converted at Jerusalem, or were there some there who made the journey into Galilee to see for themselves and believed when they saw Jesus.

Quote Yehudi:
"When one evaluates a claim, doesn't he need to hear the witnesses' testimony to make his ruling, not just be told that witnesses exist? I could tell you that I once was able to fly under my own power, and that 500 people witnessed me do it, but where does that leave my claim if you don't know who the 500, where they lived, or what they had to say about it, especially if you never heard of it from an outside source?
Didn't You See The Sign?"

We often speak of the twelve without mentioning their names. We don't even know who the 70 were, but we trust that there were in fact 70 people that Jesus sent before Him as He journeyed toward Jerusalem to celebrate the Feast of Dedication a few months before His death. Maybe a number of these 500 were known to the people. Luke seemed to know "many" who tried to put some testimony into writing (Luke 1:1). Who are they? We are not told, but it is possible that at least some of the 500 may be included in the "many" that Luke speaks of. We are not told the names of the 500, but we are given the name of Paul who said they existed. If you don't trust Paul, then you won't believe what he says. I have read all of what Paul has written and consider what he wrote to be Scripture.

Do you consider all of what Moses wrote to be the Word of God? I do. Tell me, there are a lot of names written in the genealogies of both books of Chronicles. How many of those names have any significance to you? David, Moses, Aaron and a few others I suspect, but the majority of the names mean nothing to you. What if the names and addresses were given in 1Corinthians by Paul, would it make any difference to you or anyone else today? How would you verify Paul's record? Wouldn't the list, itself, be suspect to you just as much as the lack of one is?

Quote Yehudi:
"Jesus, when asked by the Pharisees to give them a sign, replied he would give them the sign of Jonah -- just as Jonah was in the belly of the whale for three days and three nights, so too would Jesus die and be resurrected on the third day. However, after the supposed resurrection, Jesus didn't appear to the Pharisees. He only appeared to those who had already believed in him. How is this a sign to the Pharisees. If I gave you a sign that defied nature, but disappeared and then my friends, whom you never trusted in the first place, came to you and told you the sign had come to pass, how would you react? What good is a sign if you never see it? "

As I mentioned above, this thing was not done in a corner. The priests paid off the witnesses that they trusted. They knew that Jesus rose from the dead. They were not honest men. Jesus gave them a sign and even produced a preview before the actual event so there would be no mistaking their hearts. Lazarus was dead and was resurrected the fourth day after his death (John 11:39, 46-50), but the leaders planned not only to kill Jesus but also Lazarus whom Jesus brought back to life (John 12:10-11).

Quote Yehudi:
"Aren't we all, Jew or gentile, seeking truth???"

No! Some Jews and some gentiles seek the truth. Most believe what they desire to believe. Which are you?

Be well,
7  Theology / General Theology / Re:God is not only a jealous God, He is selfish also. on: May 18, 2003, 06:08:20 PM
He who does not love, does not know God, for God is love (1John 4:8 >>Moffatt)

"(love) is never rude, never selfish..." (1Corinthians 13:5 >>Moffatt)
"(love) is never haughty or selfish..." (1Corinthians 13:5 >>Living Bible)
"It (love) is not indecent. It isn't selfish..." (1Corinthians 13:5 >>Beck)
"Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage..." (1Corinthians 13:5 >>J.B. Phillips)
"(love) is not rude or selfish..." (1Corinthians 13:5 >>Complete Jewish Bible)
"(love is not) rude; never selfish..." (New English Bible)

Other translations such as the New King James; American Standard, New American Standard; Twentieth Century New Testament; Young's Literal Translation; Darby and Webster have it: "(love) seeks not its own..."

The NIV has it: "(love) is not rude, it is not self-seeking..."

According to Webster's New Riverside Dictionary, the meaning of selfish is: "concerned only or primarily with oneself without regard to others; self-centered; self-seeking."

I cannot help but think that I have missed something in what you are trying to say. Perhaps you could be a bit clearer... or perhaps "selfish" was a poor choice for an adjective to describe our God.

Certainly Jesus is God and He did not seek His own when He chose to become man (Philippians 2:6-8), and this act is Paul's model for us to follow in choosing another's welfare above one's own (Philippians 2:1-5; compare 2:21). While I understand that God does all things for His own glory, why should that be described as "selfish"? Would you say that a man (or woman) who above and beyond the call of duty gave up his (her) life while defending our country did so for selfish reasons? Certainly one's reasons would have to be heroic, honorable or even because one's character could not permit him/her to act otherwise in a crisis, but to say that such a deed is "selfish" would denigrate the act. Would it not?

In my opinion, to compare "selfish" with "jealous" is to miss a very important point. There is "righteousness" in jealousy, but I cannot imagine any righteousness in a "selfish" goal.

God loved Israel and chose her for His exclusive possession. He desired that Israel would choose Him as well, but He repeated found them "in bed" with other gods. He was jealous. There is a sense of honor and righteous indignation in this kind of jealousy. If you can give me one example of how "selfishness" is honorable at any time, under any circumstance, perhaps I could adjust my viewpoint.

8  Fellowship / You name it!! / Re:Mind boggle-check it out!! on: May 08, 2003, 12:30:17 PM
Hey New_self,
I just went to your sight. I was intrigued for awhile but the trick is this. Each 10 number group when added together and then subtracted from the origional number will always equal the same number. For example: any number in the 90's when added together and subtracted from the origional number will always equal 81. For the 80's it will always be 72 and for the 60's it will always equal 63. They change the symbols beside those numbers each time you play the game. Therefore a different symbol will always come up. However, for the session you are playing each key number in the decade has the same symbol along side of it. For example: if 63 has the libra sign next to it, so will 72 and 81 and the rest of the key numbers.

Look again, it's clever but simple. Smiley

God bless,

9  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 05:49:39 PM

1 Cor. 10:16 - "the cup of blessing" or Third cup makes present the actual paschal sacrifice of Christ, the Lamb who was slain.

1 Cor. 10:18 - Paul indicates that what is eaten from the altar has been sacrificed, and we become partners with victim. What Catholic priests offer from the altar has indeed been sacrificed, our Lord Jesus, the paschal Lamb.

As I said above, this Scripture says that if we suffer with Christ we shall also reap the rewards of Christ. That is what fellowship or being partakers of the altar means. Identity with Christ in His suffering reaps identity with Him in His glory when He returns.

1 Cor. 10:20 - Paul further compares the sacrifices of pagans to the Eucharistic sacrifice - both are sacrifices, but one is offered to God. This proves that the memorial offering of Christ is a sacrifice.

Corpus, you keep preaching your denomination as though believing as you do is the ONLY valid interpretation of the Scriptures. As I said before, the elements of bread and wine are memorials to the ONE SACRIFICE - NEVER AGAIN TO BE REPEATED, SACRIFICE. If God were to do something that would not be repeated, but wanted us to remember what He did, what might He do?
  • For creation He gave the Sabbath
  • For the coming out of Egypt, He gave the Passover
  • For the Law and later the outpouring of the Spirit, He gave Pentecost
  • For the wandering in the wilderness and living in tents, He gave Tabernacles
  • For the Crucifixion, He gave the bread and the wine.
Each are memorials. What more could He do or say so people would understand?

1 Cor. 11:26 - Paul teaches that as often as you eat the bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the Lord's death. This means that celebrating the Eucharist is proclaiming the Gospel.

I agree! The Lord's Supper proclaims the death of Christ. It is set up as a MEMORIAL to Him for what He did.

1 Cor. 10:21 - Paul's usage of the phrase "table of the Lord" in celebrating the Eucharist is further evidence that the Eucharist is indeed a sacrifice. The Jews always understood the phrase "Table of the Lord" to refer to an altar of sacrifice.

Lev. 24:6, Ezek. 41:22; 44:16 and Malachi 1:7,12 - for example, the phrase "table of the Lord" in these verses always refers to an altar of sacrifice.

Leviticus and Ezekiel are both speaking of the Table of Shewbread  in the Holy Place of the Temple. Upon it were unleavened cakes that the priests must eat. This had to do with identifying with the altar.

Malachi spoke of what was brought to the altar as being "seconds" or what we might consider flawed produce on the market. We might get things like this at "bargain" prices. You get what you pay for. Nevertheless, this is the type of animal and produce that was brought to the Temple. The "table of the Lord" is that part of the animal and the produce that was not burnt upon the altar. It was considered the priest's portion. The "reward" he received for his fellowship with the "altar". Your interpretation that Paul is using 1Corinthians 10:21 to show that the Lord's Supper is a sacrificial offering in simply not true. The problem is that if you go to Scripture with an idea of what it means, usually you can make it mean what you desire.

Heb. 13:10,15 - this earthly altar is used in the Mass to offer the Eucharistic sacrifice of praise to God through our eternal Priest, Jesus Christ.

Some of what you have posted, Corpus, I have found very interesting. Some other matters show you are really "reaching" to make Scripture say what you want in order that your doctrine would be true. Still other matters show an honest approach to Scripture that simply differs with my own. I have found your commentary both interesting and refreshing in that when I was still Roman Catholic, the Scriptures were not suggested reading. If this has changed, I applaud the change. If this is a personal commitment on your part, than I applaud your interest in God's Word. It has been fun for me to fellowship with you in this way. Too bad we are not neighbors.

The sense of Hebrews 13:10, 15 has to do with the Jewish brethren leaving behind the very religion that brought them to Christ.
  • Verse-1 calls us to love for the brethren.
  • The chapter speaks of our union with Christ (v.4);
  • He will provide for us (v.5),
  • so that we can live in confidence (v.6).
  • We are to remember those who guide the rulership of Christ over us, knowing that Jesus is always the same; God never changes (v. 7-8).
  • We must not be carried away with strange "doctrines" which is linked with meat in verse nine.
  • Then in verse 10 the writer says that we who serve the Temple of God have an altar which they (the Jews in this context) have no right to partake.
Doctrine is meat or food and is linked to the altar of which others have no right to partake. Only the Levites had a right to the altar. The other tribes of Israel had no right to it at all.

The sense is that we need to fix our eyes upon Jesus who is the Author and finisher of our faith (Hebrews 12:1-2). We are told to bear the reproach of Christ and go to Him who is outside the camp (Hebrews 13:11-13). The religious organizations of today whether Christian or Jewish should not have the great appeal that they have upon us, for we have no permanent "city" or "church denomination" here. We look for one to come (Hebrews 13:14). Through Christ, i.e. in His Name we offer the sacrifice of praise which "the fruit of our lips" to our great God, in all circumstance and every day.

This is the day that the Lord has made. We shall rejoice and be glad in it. God bless, Corpus.

10  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 05:30:06 PM

d). The Eucharist Makes Present Jesus' One Eternal Sacrifice; it's Not Just a Symbolic Memorial

Gen. 14:18 - remember Melchizedek's bread and wine offering foreshadowed the sacramental re-presentation of Jesus' offering.

Luke 22:19; 1 Cor. 11:24-25 - the translation of Jesus' words of consecration is "touto poieite tan eman anamnasin." This literally means "offer this as my memorial offering." The Eucharist is a sacrificial offering. Moreover, the Greek word "anamnesis" means to really or actually make present the offering. It is not just a memorial of a past event, but a past event made present in time.

I admire your enthusiasm for your denomination, Corpus, but you know you are taking liberties with the Greek by saying that these words "literally" mean what you say. No! They CAN mean what you say. That is, the grammar is not violated by what you say. A "literal" translation would be something OTHER THAN WHAT YOU SAY. The truth is understood in the context. I believe that I have shown that the context reveals not a literal changing of the substance but represents the greater Reality of Christ's sacrifice for our sins. Nevertheless, you are welcome to your own interpretation. This is what "denominations" do.

Lev. 24:7 - the word "memorial" in Hebrew is "azkarah" which means to actually make present. Jesus' instruction to offer the bread and wine (which He changed into His body and blood) as a "memorial offering" demonstrates that the offering is made present in time over and over again.

Num. 10:10 - further, Jesus' command to offer the memorial in remembrance of Him demonstrates that the memorial offering is indeed a sacrifice. In this verse, "remembrance" refers to a sacrifice, not just a symbolic memorial. It is a re-presentation of the actual sacrifice made present in time. It is as if the curtain of history is drawn and Calvary is made present to us.

Mal. 1:10-11 - Jesus' command to his apostles to offer His memorial sacrifice of bread and wine which becomes His body and blood fulfills the prophecy that God would reject the Jewish sacrifices and receive a pure sacrifice offered in every place.

Again, you are taking great liberties with the Greek and applying what God instituted under the First Testament to apply to what you want the Greek to mean for the New Testament. Like I said above, I admire your enthusiasm for your denomination. Nevertheless, you are reaching here. You are indeed mistaken, if you think that what you are saying will convince anyone except those who wish to believe in transubstantiation.

Heb. 9:23 - in this verse, the author refers to the heavenly "sacrifices" in the plural. Jesus died once. Therefore, the sacrifice is continually offered around the world by priests of Christ's Church. These "sacrifices" fulfill Mal. 1:11, where a pure offering is to be made in every place from the rising to the setting of the sun.

The plural here has to do with a "figure of speech" known in the Greek as "heterosis." It exchanges one voice, mood, tense, person, number, degree, or gender for another. It is quite common in both the Hebrew and the Greek. For example, consider Psalm 51:17 where it says that "the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit…" The plural "sacrifices" with the singular object "spirit".

Heb. 9:23 - the Eucharistic sacrifice also fulfills Jer. 33:18 that His kingdom will consist of a sacrificial priesthood forever, and fulfills Zech. 9:15 that the sons of Zion shall drink blood like wine and be saved.

This is another reach, Corpus. Too often I see my brethren writhing off the Jews as the people of God. All the Scripture that has always been for the Jews has suddenly been absorbed into blessings for the Gentile believers. All the Scripture EXCEPT FOR THE CURSES AND THE JUDGMENT that is still for the Jews. Well, I'll wait for the King of the Jews to return and see what He says.

Heb. 13:15 - this "sacrifice of praise" refers to the actual sacrifice or "toda" offering of Christ. See, for example, Lev. 7:12-15; 22:29-30.

1 Peter 2:5-6 - Peter says that we as priests offer "sacrifices" to God through Jesus, and he connects these sacrifices to Zion where the Eucharist was established. These sacrifices refer to the one eternal Eucharistic sacrifice of Christ offered in every place around the world.

The sacrifice of praise is the fruit of our own lips. We do this when we worship in song and testimony before the brethren. What are you implying here, Corpus? Concerning 1Peter 2:5-6 Peter is speaking of our being built up into the Holy Temple of God. We are living stones and Christ is the Chief Cornerstone (compare Ephesians 2:20-22). As far as the sacrifices mentioned is concerned, Paul mentions this as well in Romans 12:1. We are to offer ourselves as a living sacrifice. This is our fitting service.

11  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 05:16:38 PM

(c). Jesus' Passion is Connected to the Passover Sacrifice where the Lamb Must Be Eaten

Matt. 26:2; Mark 14:12; Luke 22:7 - Jesus' passion is clearly identified with the Passover sacrifice (where lambs were slain and eaten).

John 1:29,36; Acts 8:32; 1 Peter 1:19 - Jesus is described as the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. The Lamb must be eaten.

Luke 23:4,14; John 18:38; 19:4,6 - under the Old Covenant, the lambs were examined on Nisan 14 to ensure that they had no blemish. The Gospel writers also emphasize that Jesus the Lamb was examined on Nisan 14 and no fault was found in him. He is the true Passover Lamb which must be eaten.

Heb. 9:14 - Jesus offering Himself "without blemish" refers to the unblemished lamb in Exodus 12:5 which had to be consumed.

Matt. 26:29; Mark 14:25 - Jesus does not complete the Passover seder meal in the upper room by drinking Fourth Cup (the "Cup of Consummation"). Jesus omits the Fourth Cup. The Gospel writers point this critical omission of the seder meal out to us to emphasize that the new Passover sacrifice of the Lamb was not yet completed. The consummation must follow the sacrifice.

Matt. 26:30; Mark 14:26 - they sung the great Hallel, which traditionally followed the Third Cup of the seder meal, but did not drink the Fourth Cup of Consummation. The Passover was not finished.

Matt. 26:39; Mark 14:36; Luke 22:42; John 18:11 - our Lord acknowledges He has one more cup to drink. This is the Cup of Consummation which he will drink on the cross.

Psalm 116:13 - this passage references this cup of salvation. Jesus will offer this Cup as both Priest and Victim. This is the final cup of the New Testament Passover.

Luke 22:44 - after the Eucharist, Jesus sweats blood in the garden of Gethsemane. This shows that His sacrifice began in the Upper Room and connects the Passion to the seder meal where the lamb must not only be sacrificed, but consumed.

Matt. 27:34; Mark 15:23 - Jesus, in his Passion, refuses to even drink an opiate. The writers point this out to emphasize that the final cup will be drunk on the cross, after the Paschal Lamb's sacrifice is completed.

POST #27
John 19:23 - this verse describes the "chiton" garment Jesus wore when He offered Himself on the cross. These were worn by the Old Testament priests to offer sacrifices. See Exodus 28:4; Lev. 16:4.

John 19:29 - Jesus is provided wine (the Fourth Cup) on a hyssop branch which was used to sprinkle the lambs' blood in Exodus 12:22. This ties Jesus' sacrifice to the passover lambs which had to be consumed in the seder meal which was ceremonially completed by drinking the Cup of Consummation.

Matt. 27:45; Mark 15:33; John 19:14 - the Gospel writers confirm Jesus' death at the sixth hour, just when the Passover lambs were sacrificed. Again, this ties Jesus' death to the death of the passover lambs. Like the Old Covenant, in the New Covenant, the passver Lamb must be eaten.

Matt. 27:48; Mark 15:36; John 19:28-30 - Jesus drinks the final Passover cup. The sacrifice is finished. God's love for humanity is manifested.

1 Cor. 5:7 - Paul tells us that the Lamb has been sacrificed. But what do we need to do? Some say we just need to accept Jesus as personal Lord and Savior.

1 Cor. 5:8 - But Paul says that we need to celebrate the Eucharistic feast. This means that we need to eat the Lamb. We need to restore communion with God.

Heb. 13:15 - "sacrifice of praise" or "toda" refers to the thanksgiving offerings of Lev. 7:12-15; 22:29-30 which had to be eaten.

1 Cor. 10:16 - Paul's use of the phrase "the cup of blessing" refers to the Third Cup of the seder meal. This demonstrates that the seder meal is tied to Christ's Eucharistic sacrifice.

John 19:34-35 - John conspicuously draws attention here. The blood (Eucharist) and water (baptism) make the fountain that cleanses sin as prophesied in Zech 13:1. Just like the birth of the first bride came from the rib of the first Adam, the birth of the second bride (the Church) came from the rib of the second Adam (Jesus). Gen. 2:22.

John 7:38 - out of His Heart shall flow rivers of living water, the Spirit. Consequently, Catholics devote themselves to Jesus' Sacred Heart.

Matt. 2:1, Luke 2:4-7 - Jesus the bread of life was born in a feeding trough in the city of Bethlehem, which means "house of bread."

Except for possible oversights such as the fact that the Passover Lamb (and Jesus) were examined from the 10th of the first month to the 14th, I have no disagreement with your presentation of these Scriptures and commentary. Of course, you understand these things to foreshadow the Eucharist, while I would say that both these Scriptures and the Eucharist are symbols/memorials of Christ's suffering and death. Concerning the fourth "CUP OF CONSUMATION" I was not aware of this significance and the fact that it was consumed upon the cross itself. Thank you, I appreciate your insight. I'll have to study this further to see if everything is indeed as you say. Nevertheless, it seems to fit and is a beautiful commentary.

12  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 05:11:16 PM

1 Cor. 11:23 - Paul does not explain what he has actually received directly from Christ, except in the case when he teaches about the Eucharist. Here, Paul emphasizes the importance of the Eucharist by telling us he received directly from Jesus instructions on the Eucharist which is the source and summit of the Christian faith.

1 Cor. 11:27-29 - in these verses, Paul says that eating or drinking in an unworthy manner is the equivalent of profaning (literally, murdering) the body and blood of the Lord. If this is just a symbol, we cannot be guilty of actually profaning (murdering) it. We cannot murder a symbol. Either Paul, the divinely inspired apostle of God, is imposing an unjust penalty, or the Eucharist is the actual body and blood of Christ.

1 Cor. 11:30 - this verse alludes to the consequences of receiving the Eucharist unworthily. Receiving the actual body and blood of Jesus in mortal sin results in actual physical consequences to our bodies.

1 Cor. 11:27-30 - thus, being guilty of literally murdering the body of Christ, and risking physical consequences to our bodies if we partake unworthily, is overwhelming evidence for the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. These are unjust penalties if the Eucharist is just a symbol.

I think it might be better to quote the Scripture here:
1 Corinthians 11:23  For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you, That the Lord Jesus the same night in which he was betrayed took bread: 24  And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. 25  After the same manner also he took the cup, when he had supped, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood: this do ye, as oft as ye drink it, in remembrance of me. 26  For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord's death till he come. 27  Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. 28  But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. 29  For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. 30  For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.

Thee times Paul says that this is a memorial. In verse 24 he says the breaking the bread is a memorial. In verse 25 He says the drinking of the wine is a memorial. Finally in verse 26 He says that eating the bread and drinking the wine proclaims the Lord's death until He comes.

As far as murder is concerned, you try to make a point of murdering a symbol, but the subject is not murder nor is murder mentioned. The subject is treating the Lord's Supper in an "unworthy" manner; and that such a one is "guilty" of the body and blood of Christ (v.27). Notice this person is not guilty of the "bread and the wine" but "the body and blood of the Lord." Therefore, treating the symbol irreverently doesn't make one guilty of a symbol, but of the reality which the symbol represents.

Concerning this you imply that punishment would be unjust, if the bread and wine were just symbols. If you or I would desecrate the American Flag, what would we be doing? If we did so in front of a U.S. Marine or a Navy Seal or a Soldier in the 101st or 82nd Air Division, what kind of response could we expect for our recklessness?

Nadab and Abihu died because they substituted their own fire in their censers. God killed them for their indiscretion. Was that also unjust? God is a God of ceremony. Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy make this plain. To abuse the symbols that God gives to us to represent a greater Reality is to abuse that Reality.

The remainder of your Scriptural references in this section from Acts 2:42 to Revelation 22:14 cannot be compared with your arguments thus far. You are reaching here Corpus and that is not worthy of you. I understand that the Catholic denomination will have different doctrinal beliefs than those who call themselves Protestant, but I know that the Catholic Church does not teach what you are pushing here.

13  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 05:02:48 PM

(b). Jesus Institutes the Eucharist / More Proofs of the Real Presence

Matt. 26:26-28; Mark. 14:22,24; Luke 22;19-20; 1 Cor. 11:24-25 - Jesus says, this IS my body and blood. Jesus does not say, this is a symbol of my body and blood.

Matt. 26:26; Mark. 14:22; Luke 22:19-20 - the Greek phrase is "Touto estin to soma mou." This phraseology means "this is actually" or "this is really" my body and blood.

1 Cor. 11:24 - the same translation is used by Paul - "touto mou estin to soma." The statement is "this is really" my body and blood. God does not declare something without making it so.

Matt. 26:26; Mark. 14:22; Luke 22:19 - to deny the more than 2,000 year-old Catholic understanding of the Eucharist, others must argue that Jesus was really saying "this represents (not is) my body and blood." However, Aramaic, the language that Jesus spoke, had over 30 words for "represent," but Jesus did not use any of them. He used the Aramaic word for "estin" which means "is."

The verb esti (S.2076) is the third person singular of the verb "to be" (S.1510). Jesus says in John 10:7, 9 "I am the door…" In Revelation 5:12 all of heaven is declaring "Worthy is (S.2076) the Lamb that was slain…" We both know that Jesus is not an animal. Of course, this is metaphorical and the fact that the verb "to be" is used in the above Scriptures (even in the third person singular form) has nothing to do with it being literal or metaphorical. It can be either, grammatically speaking. However it is used, it is understood with the Spirit of God, given to His children.

Matt. 26:28; Mark. 14:24; Luke 22:20 - Jesus' use of "poured out" in reference to His blood also emphasizes the reality of its presence.

The Greek word is ekcheo (S.1632) and means "to pour" or "to pour out." Jesus used this expression of Himself on the cross, as He began to sing Psalm 22 "My God, My God, why have you forsake Me…" In verse 14 the song continues "I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart is like wax; it is melted in the midst of my bowels…" It is used of Jesus "shedding" His blood and often of the Holy spirit being poured out upon man. The word is used in Jude 1:11 for "ran greedily after" (S.1632). It has no special significance for the Eucharist, other than the wine is a memorial of the "poured out" life of Christ. It is not literal as pertaining to the wine.

Exodus 24:8 - Jesus emphasizes the reality of His actual blood being present by using Moses' statement "blood of the covenant."

Moses had sacrificed an oxen (Exodus 24:5). All these offerings were shadows of Christ. The blood represented Christ's blood and the service foretold Christ's death (Luke 24:26-27). The wine is no different. It is symbolic of the true Reality, Christ.

1 Cor. 10:16 - Paul asks the question, "the cup of blessing and the bread of which we partake, is it not an actual participation in Christ's body and blood?" Is Paul really asking because He, the divinely inspired writer, does not understand? No, of course not. Paul's questions are obviously rhetorical. This IS the actual body and blood. Further, the Greek word "koinonia" describes an actual, not symbolic participation in the body and blood.

1 Cor. 10:18 - in this verse, Paul is saying we are what we eat. We are not partners with a symbol. We are partners of the one actual body.

Let's quote the Scripture:
1 Corinthians 10:15  I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say. 16  The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion (S.2844) of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion (S.2844) of the body of Christ? 17  For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread. 18  Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers (S.2844) of the altar?

The first thing to notice is that these words are for men made wise by the Spirit of God (v.15). The cup of blessing that we bless is our fellowship in the blood (or suffering) of Christ. (v.16). When John and James tried to get Jesus to let them sit on the right and left of Him in the Kingdom, Jesus asked if they were able to drink of the cup that He would drink (Matthew 20:22). He was speaking of His suffering and dying. 1Corinthians 10:17 speaks of us the Body of Christ being the bread because we all partake of THAT ONE BREAD which is Christ. We fellowship in His life and in His death. We identify with Him.

Israel (and in particular the Levites), according to the flesh were given the sacrifices as part of their inheritance and their labor. Their service made them partakers of the altar i.e. they fellowshipped in the altar (v.18). This is understood in the fact that as we fellowship in the suffering of Christ, so shall we partake of His rewards (2Corinthians 1:7). Again as we witness the suffering of Christ in our own lives, we shall be partakers of the glory that shall be revealed (1Peter 5:1).

14  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 04:41:45 PM

John 3:5,11; Matt. 16:11-12 - here are some examples of Jesus correcting wrong impressions of His teaching. In the Eucharistic discourse, Jesus does not correct the scandalized disciples.

John 6:64,70 - Jesus ties the disbelief in the Real Presence of His Body and Blood in the Eucharist to Judas' betrayal. Those who don't believe in this miracle betray Him.

I have already addressed Jesus' speech in John 6 and that He did, in fact, warn the carnal followers of their error. Nevertheless, concerning His tying the response of the crowd with Judas' betrayal, if this is in fact a parallel, Judas' activity is reflected in the crowd's activity. They both walked away from Christ. They both thought that Christ was foolish. Neither had any real use for Him. It had nothing to do with the Eucharist. That was not even instituted until the night in which He was betrayed.

Isaiah 9:20; 49:26; Mic. 3:3; 2 Sam. 23:17; Rev. 16:6; 17:6, 16 - to further dispense with the claim that Jesus was only speaking symbolically, these verses demonstrate that symbolically eating body and blood is always used in a negative context of a physical assault.

John 6:54 - thus, if Jesus were speaking symbolically, He would be saying to us, "He who reviles or assaults me has eternal life." This, of course, is absurd.

Was not the Passover Lamb to be eaten? Is not Jesus our Passover Lamb (1Corinthians 5:7)? Are we not to keep the Feast by partaking of spiritual unleavened bread like "sincerity" and "truth" and put away the old "spiritual" leaven of "malice" and "wickedness?" How are we to receive these?

How about Luke 14:24, what are we to make of the fact that the unworthy shall never taste of the supper prepared by God? Is not Christ this Spiritual Meal? The unbeliever, the carnal or natural man, is unable to partake of Him. They reject Him, counting it foolishness to trust Him.

John 10:7 - Some point out that Jesus did speak metaphorically about Himself in other places in Scripture. For example, here Jesus says, "I am the door." But in this case, no one asked Jesus if He was literally made of wood. They understood him metaphorically.

John 15:1,5 - here is another example, where Jesus says, "I am the vine." Again, no one asked Jesus if He was literally a vine…

We have no argument here.

…In John 6, Jesus' disciples did ask about His literal speech (that this bread was His flesh which must be eaten). He confirmed that His flesh and blood were food and drink indeed. Many disciples understood Him and left Him.

Matt. 18:2-5 - Jesus says we must become like children, or we will not enter the kingdom of God. We must believe Jesus' words with child-like faith. Because Jesus says this bread is His flesh, we believe by faith, even though it surpasses our understanding.

Luke 1:37 - with God, nothing is impossible. If we can believe in the Incarnation, we can certainly believe in the Real Presence of Jesus in the Eucharist. God coming to us in elements He created is an extension of the awesome mystery of the Incarnation

Concerning John 6, as I have made clear above, it is my believe that Jesus did, in fact, tell those who were leaving Him that they were not understanding correctly, that His speech was "spirit" and must not be received logically.

Concerning becoming like little children, this is true. We must have a childlike spirit concerning learning the things of God. Children love to learn and participate in new things, and it is in this "spirit" that we must become like a child. Nevertheless, we must not understand as a child (1Corinthians 13:11). Otherwise, we might take something like Mark 9:47 or Luke 14:26 literally. I am certain you and I would have no argument that these verses MUST be taken metaphorically and cannot be received with childlike understanding.


15  Theology / General Theology / Re:Communion on: May 07, 2003, 04:29:46 PM

John 6:60 - as are many anti-Cathlolics today, Jesus' disciples are scandalized by these words. They even ask, "Who can 'listen' to it (much less understand it)?" To the unillumined mind, it seems grotesque.

John 6:61-63 - Jesus acknowledges their disgust. Jesus' use of the phrase "the spirit gives life" means the disciples need supernatural faith, not logic, to understand His words.
Corpus, I am neither scandalized with the words of Jesus, nor am I anti-Catholic. As I have begun my post so I continue. Though I disagree with you, I have received you as a brother in Christ

As for John 6:61-63, it seems plain to me that Jesus is speaking metaphorically. He says that the words He is speaking are "spirit" - that is, they are to be spiritually understood and not to be taken literally like they were doing. Concerning faith, we do not need "great faith" to do this. When the disciples asked Jesus to increase their faith, He told them that the smallest faith is sufficient, because faith grows. When people stumble it is not because thy have little faith, it is because they have NO FAITH. Faith comes by hearing or reading or contemplating the Word of God. In other words, faith grows as we spend time with Jesus (Romans 10:17).

John 3:6 - Jesus often used the comparison of "spirit versus flesh" to teach about the necessity of possessing supernatural faith versus a natural understanding.

Mark 14:38 - here Jesus also uses the "spirit/flesh" comparison. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak. We must go beyond the natural to understand the supernatural.

1 Cor. 2:14,3:3; Rom 8:5; Gal. 5:17 - here again we see the "spirit/flesh" comparision being used to teach that unspiritual people are not receiving the gift of faith. They are still "in the flesh."

John 6:63 - Some often argue that Jesus' use of the phrase "the spirit gives life" shows that Jesus was only speaking symbolically. However, they must explain why there is not one place in Scripture where "spirit" means "symbolic." As we have seen, the use of "spirit" relates to supernatural faith. What words are spirit and life? The words that we must eat Jesus' flesh and drink His blood, or we have no life in us.

Corpus, how can one "teach" a blind man to see or a deaf man to hear? It cannot be done. The significance of 1Corinthians 2 is that the "natural" man will not receive what is of God. The "spiritual" man will. To understand the Word of God, one must have the Spirit of God, just as to see one must have the gift of natural sight. One cannot command it or teach it. It is given by God. When Jesus speaks of the "spirit/flesh" comparison in John 3:6, He is speaking of the "natural" v/s the "spiritual" man. In Mark 14:38 He was speaking of the conflict of the Spirit and the Flesh within the spiritual man as is indicated in Galatians 5:16-17. The "natural" or "carnal" man has no such conflict, He is simply not subject to the Law of God nor can he be (Romans 8:7).

Concerning John 6:63 and my argument that Christ is speaking metaphorically when saying we must eat His flesh and drink His blood, it must be understood as the Word of God teaches that there is a "natural" man and a "spiritual" man (1Corinthinas 2:12, 14-15). Jesus is speaking of His words and says they are spirit (S.4151 - Greek = pneuma). Hebrews 4:12 speaks of how powerful the Word of God is, dividing even the soul and the spirit (S.4151). Notice the effect of the words of Joseph upon his father Jacob in Genesis 45:27. Words have a spiritual effect upon man. Jesus' words were no different. They were spirit and must be understood by those who were spiritual as 1Corinthians 2 claims. Now in Revelation 13:15, the second beast has power to make a "image" to the first Beast and not only so, but to give it life (S.4151). Are you going to tell me that this is not metaphorical? Does a man (even one possessed by Satan) have the power to give life? Only God can give life. Therefore, Revelation 13:15 MUST be metaphorical, and so too MUST the same Greek word (spirit) be taken metaphorically in John 6:63.

John 6:66-67 - many disciples leave Jesus, rejecting this literal interpretation that we must eat His flesh and drink His blood. At this point, these disciples really thought Jesus had lost His mind. If they were wrong about the literal interpretation, why wouldn't Jesus, the Great Teacher, have corrected them? Why didn't Jesus say, "Hey, come back here, I was only speaking symbolically!"? Because they understood correctly.

Jesus already claims that His words are "spirit" in John 6:63. These people cannot understand the Word of God without the Spirit of God, they are carnal. Notice in John 6:26 Jesus says that these carnal people were not interested in spiritual things but only in a "free meal." In verse 27 He tells them to get their minds off that which perishes and put them on eternal things. In verse 28 they ask Jesus what the work of God is. In verse 29 He tells them that the work of God is to believe or trust Him (as Messiah). Then in verse 30 they have the unmitigated insolence to ask for a sign - this immediately following the miracle of feeding so many people with a boy's lunch. NO! these people were carnal, natural men. There was not a spiritual man in the bunch. They didn't know how to take Jesus' words (which were spirit) and understand. To them, Jesus was either a lunatic or a very foolish man (1Corinthians 2:14).

Mark 4:34 - Jesus always explained to His disciples the real meanings of His teachings. He never would have let them go away with a false impression, most especially in regard to a question about eternal salvation.

John 6:37 - Jesus says He would not drive those away from Him. They understood Him correctly but would not believe.

Concerning Mark 4:34, how is this to be understood in the light of Matthew 13:10-11? Jesus did not speak plainly all of the time. When He spoke metaphorically, He revealed all to the disciples, privately.

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