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The Bible: the word of God?

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The Bible: the word of God?

Postby Phylax » Tue Oct 19, 2004 4:50 pm

In another thread on another board Rhuiden wrote:
I believe the Bible to be the inerrant, infallable, complete and perfect word of God.


I am puzzled by this. My belief is that the Bible was written by people. Otherwise, how can one acount for inconsistencies within the Bible?

(It seemed best to debate this point here, rather than in its original thread, since it seemed to be something of a spin-off there)
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Postby klewlis » Tue Oct 19, 2004 6:45 pm

Well, perceived inconsistencies may not actually be so.

But here is the general evangelical view:

Of course the words were written by humans, and the writings therefore retain human perspectives and individual style. Even so, each person was also guided and directed by God so that his words come through the human words. So the whole is God's.

Details which may be perceived to contradict each other could be a result of the individual style, or they could represent gaps in our current knowlege, or they could be rhetorical, or any number of other things. They do not detract from the reliability and inspiration of the scriptures.
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Postby Phylax » Tue Oct 19, 2004 8:25 pm

Well, perceived inconsistencies may not actually be so.

Thank you, Klewis. But I am afraid I have some difficulty with this. How can an inconsistency be recognised unless it is perceived? Or do you perhaps mean "imagined" by the word "perceived", for example someone imagines erroneously that there is an inconsistency, whereas in fact it can be demonstrated that there is not?

If that is the case, I agree with you. What I am not sure of, however, is whether all the Bible's inconsistencies are of that type. (I realize, of course, that your post didn't actually say that they were.)
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Postby classicalclarinet » Tue Oct 19, 2004 11:29 pm

Infallible? No. But for Christians, it IS the word of God, just as the Koran is to Muslims.

But for non-Christians, it is not the word of God but rather a book written by imcomprehensible men of long ago. And thereby lies the question.
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Re: The Bible: the word of God?

Postby mingshey » Wed Oct 20, 2004 12:15 am

Phylax wrote:In another thread on another board Rhuiden wrote:
I believe the Bible to be the inerrant, infallable, complete and perfect word of God.


I am puzzled by this. My belief is that the Bible was written by people. Otherwise, how can one acount for inconsistencies within the Bible?


"Faith is the evidence of what you cannot see." as is written somewhere in the Bible, which explains how a faith can sustain itself in human brain.
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Postby Titus Marius Crispus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 2:11 am

Surely faith can sustain itself in one's brain, but how did that faith come about in the first place? If one claims that the Word of God or even the word of other men creates the faith which is then self-sustaining, one is saying that one found faith through faith. This never made any sense to me. I supposed that faith came from either brainwashing or through the exploitation of human weakness (e.g. offering prizes like Salvation and Forgiveness).

After coming to this conclusion, I was forced to concede that I could have just as easily been brainwashed into believe that the Koran was the ultimate truth. The same applies for all religions. To me it seemed that the only reason I believed in the Bible rather than, say, the Sutras or Vedas, was that I was raised in a Christian environment. That, of course, didn't make any sense. Why would I need to be raised in a Christian environment to find an Omnipotent God's Word meaningful? This led me to believe that the Bible was not, in fact, the flawless Word of God.

The atrocities (in my view) that God committed and/or caused in the Old Testament also contribute to my disbelief in the flawlessness of the Bible. For example, in the book of Numbers, God commands the Israelites to wipe out an entire race of people (the Midianites). When the soldiers come back to Moses, having spared the women and children, Moses scolds them and commands them to kill all the males and non-virgin females. He says to save only the virgin girls for themselves. Omnibenevolent? Merciful?

:?:
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Postby Kasper » Wed Oct 20, 2004 2:35 am

The problem with rationalism is that it fails to understand irrationalism and dismisses it.
Whether you can rationally explain faith or not, it does exist, just as love, fear, etc.

You cannot explain why one would have faith in the bible or why a grown woman would be afraid of spider.

Don't try to rationalise everything, people are not just rational.
We cannot prove the bible is the word of God, you either believe it or you don't. There is nothing more to be said on the subject.

Why do seemingly intelligent people waste their time on this stuff? Use your intelligence to rid the world of violence, hunger and disease or someting. Instead of these pointless debates which seem to be older than the bible itself.
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby Titus Marius Crispus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 3:04 am

I believe I can explain why one would have faith in the Bible: either brainwashing or exploitation of human weakness.

This does not, to me, seem like a pointless question. If I am wrong, I would suffer for all eternity for it. I argue with people about the question in an effort to be sure I have not misunderstood something or made a vital mistake which would cost me dearly.
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Postby benissimus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 3:32 am

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:I believe I can explain why one would have faith in the Bible: either brainwashing or exploitation of human weakness.

This does not, to me, seem like a pointless question. If I am wrong, I would suffer for all eternity for it. I argue with people about the question in an effort to be sure I have not misunderstood something or made a vital mistake which would cost me dearly.

I believe he already answered your question:

Kasper wrote:The problem with rationalism is that it fails to understand irrationalism and dismisses it.

I have come to the same conclusion, that religious people admit to being irrational and even take pride in it through what is known as faith.

However, I do find it confusing to see that religious people separate logic and truth. It has always been my view that the truth is reached via logic, but I think this is where we differ in ideas.
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Postby Kasper » Wed Oct 20, 2004 3:52 am

I have come to the same conclusion, that religious people admit to being irrational and even take pride in it through what is known as faith.

Tite, I understand you consider believers 'brainwashed', but surely you agree that we are all influenced by our surroundings, whether Muslim or Christian, right-wing or left-wing, etc.

May I just add that we should not be fooled into thinking that being rational is the highest level of development.

Every human being has a rational, spiritual and physical side (I hope you can agree with that). None of these should be neglected or we will find ourselves 'out of balance'.

In the end we all just want to be happy (whatever that may be) and if someone finds happiness in a certain faith or believe, even if is it irrational (spiritual) and cannot be ratified rationally, as long as they are happy, shouldn't we just respect that? Seems the world could do with a bit more simple happiness and a bit less difficult debate.
Last edited by Kasper on Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:02 am, edited 2 times in total.
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby Kasper » Wed Oct 20, 2004 3:55 am

However, I do find it confusing to see that religious people separate logic and truth. It has always been my view that the truth is reached via logic, but I think this is where we differ in ideas.


:) very few things are as relative/subjective as truth.

Perhaps justice.
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby Phylax » Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:29 am

The problem with rationalism is that it fails to understand irrationalism and dismisses it.
This is not a problem for me, good Kasper. Could you perhaps explain why it should be a problem for you or for anyone?
Don't try to rationalise everything, people are not just rational.
Well, I disagree. We are not, in the main, brute beasts. A Christian view might be that God gave us reason/rationality. That being the case, would it not be slighting to God not to use our reason?
We cannot prove the bible is the word of God, you either believe it or you don't.
It seems to me that the same could be said of Santa Claus/Father Christmas. However, my difficulty with the Bible as the absolute word of God is that the Bible is not consistent, indeed in several places it appears to be contradictory. I still think people wrote it. I'd be grateful if someone could convince me otherwise.
Why do seemingly intelligent people waste their time on this stuff? Use your intelligence to rid the world of violence, hunger and disease or someting. Instead of these pointless debates which seem to be older than the bible itself.
There could be several answers here: (a) Because God made us intelligent and gave us an enquiring mind. (b) Because some do not think that it is a waste of time. (c) Some do not think that considering these things is pointless. (d) There are many examples in history of those who have been able to enquire and to reason, while at the same time have concerned themselves with addressing practically the misfortunes of violence, hunger, disease etc.. The activities of reasoning and attempting to cure the ills of the world do not seem to be mutually exclusive: indeed, there appear to be cases where they are mutually supportive. I am sure a number of other reasonable answers will occur to people.

There could also be an objection to the way in which you pose your question: why "seemingly intelligent"? Surely you wish to persuade those who are not yet of your opinion to your point of view, rather than to denigrate them?

By the way, excellent Kasper, you have entered the fray and used your intelligence on this subject by posting your kind post. Presumably you did not think it "a waste of time" to do so by doing so? There appears to be a contradiction there!

But thank you for your trenchant point of view!
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Postby mingshey » Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:33 am

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:but how did that faith come about in the first place?


People are ready to believe anything that they hear if he is not trained to raise a suspicion on unproved stories, or if they hear nothing to the contrary.
There can be many reasons to coin up stories. And some of it is used by the political powers to bind people under one loyalty. Or people just like the story and swallow it up. Or the story really moves people's heart. That's always happening. Logical proof is a hi-tech that not many people can master. See how many people believes politicians' lies so easily.
To make it short, a faith or a belief just pops up from thin air with just a soft breath. Nothing's easier.
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Postby Phylax » Wed Oct 20, 2004 5:00 am

but how did that faith come about in the first place?

If you were to substitute "superstition" for "faith" into your question, mi Crispe, would that help at all?
Also, please do not worry about eternal damnation. I have a wonderful proof that should convince you that it will not happen to you!
Eternally yours,
Phylax.
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Postby classicalclarinet » Wed Oct 20, 2004 5:08 am

I have a wonderful proof that should convince you that it will not happen to you!


Is that a rhetorical statement? Just chekin'



a belief just pops up from thin air with just a soft breath. Nothing's easier.


Ah, Mingshey, translate it into Greek!! :)
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Postby Kasper » Wed Oct 20, 2004 5:08 am

Phylax

Rationalism has difficulty understanding irrationalism because anything irrational cannot rationally be explained. As you yourself suggest, you doubt the bible is the word of God because rationally it does not make sense. Obviously rationalism cannot encompass irrationalism. If you say you understand irrationalism and can sympathise with it, then I can only refer to my above statement that human beings are not JUST rational, but equally irrational. Since you are human you can therefore sympathise with the irrational. However, from a purely rational point of view, irrationalism cannot be understood.

As I have stated we are indeed not merely brute beasts, we are also brute beasts. Just as we are civilized thinkers. For reference please read the Bacchae, or any work written by Nietzsche / Schopenhauer / Rousseau.

As you indeed point out, (young) people do believe in Santa Claus (the poor irrational fools!).

Why are there inconsistencies in the bible? I would think because it is written/told over thousands of years during various stages of development of human society and peoples view of God changed. As stated above, people are influenced by their surroundings and as a society evolves from a more primitive war-like society to a more settled and civilized society, their view of their Gods evolve as well.

Then how can we believe the bible to be the word of God? Because faith is irrational. It aims to support people on spiritual, not a rational level.

As for ‘seemingly’ intelligent people, my rhetorical ability leaves something to be desired.

Indeed I thought is worthwhile to reply to this post, but as you have noticed, not to debate whether the bible is the word of God or not, but to point out that that discussion is pointless. See above.
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby Emma_85 » Wed Oct 20, 2004 9:58 am

Indeed I thought is worthwhile to reply to this post, but as you have noticed, not to debate whether the bible is the word of God or not, but to point out that that discussion is pointless. See above.


The thing is that we have started debating whether any Gods exist or not. The question whether it is the true word of God or just something inspired by God can't really be debated by non-Christians. Well it could, I can say it can't be God's word, cause he don't exist, but that would not be very helpful. Basically this is just a Christian theological debate, where as with any Christian theological debate, everything can be logical as long as you take certain things for granted and don't question them. Take God for granted and the rest is logical. Religion is not totally irrational, that would be wrong to suggest. The whole system can make sense, but you have to realise that it is based on things that cannot be proved. Why people take these things for granted, you could call that irrational. I also believe that religion came about because humans wanted to explain the world around them. Scary if you can't explain why that bolt of lightning hit that tree over there, isn't it? Why not imagine some vulture-headed God throwing the lightning down? You don't have proof that it's a vulture-headed God. People didn't like it 'just happens', they wanted to feel that they knew so much at least. That's how slowly religion evolved. But there is no point in people that don't take God for granted to discussing whether or not the Bible is God's word, we just end up with 'can we take God for granted?' - we already have a thread for that http://www.textkit.com/greek-latin-forum/viewtopic.php?t=541, where these things have been debated to death. I'm mean if you think God exists, well then why the heck not? He could do anything, so why not make sure those people wrote down exactly what he wanted? Or he could just 'inspire' them and then laugh his head off while looking down on earth and seeing people start religious wars because some people think passage so and so means you can eat fish on a Friday and the other's think that no! that would be a hell worthy sin! Personally I think if you take God for granted you must either believe he has nothing to do with the world and ignores us totally (that is we just invented the Bible without his help ) and well basically is totally absent apart from that bit about creating the world, or that he does care, in which case he did a pretty lame job of letting people know exactly what it is he wants us to do. Maybe he tried and then gave up cause it was so totally hopeless as people started wondering about the colour of Jesus' socks.
But well, as I said once you take God for granted you can think of many pretty things, but I don't so for me the discussion is somewhat pointless, a bit like discussing what colour his socks were.

:wink: :P

Edit: I forgot to say that while you have to take God for granted religions also have to take another fact for granted - that their religion is the correct one. :roll:
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Postby Phylax » Wed Oct 20, 2004 12:30 pm

Very many thanks for that, Emma, and particularly for the link to the thread about the existence of God. Being a newbie here, I hadn't read back far enough to have found it for myself - though with so many bright and enquiring minds in this forum, I should have realized that it was bound to have been debated. :D

I started this thread off because of Rhuiden's categorical belief that "the Bible [is] the inerrant, infallable, complete and perfect word of God." I was interested in this because I have rarely met a Christian* who has taken such an extreme view. In fact, rather than being "puzzled" by it, I am actually alarmed and perhaps even a little frightened by it.

* I am not a Christian, despite having read Christian Theology at university.
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Postby Emma_85 » Wed Oct 20, 2004 2:09 pm

Hehehe, ok, now I understand why you started this thread too. Well it looks like Rhuiden hasn't actually found this thread though, maybe he doesn't visit the Academy, you should PM him and tell him you've started this thread so that we can listen to what he has to say about the Bible being the perfect word of God.
Personally I think that believing the Bible to be God's wisdom is not that far away from believing in God. I mean if you believe a God exists, then why not believe the Bible was written by God too (like some Christians don’t believe in evolution)? Especially if you believe that your religion is the correct one. I mean why would the Christian religion be the correct one when there are so many others around? Of course because they have the correct book... :wink:
Any Christian who believes that the Bible is perfect is just believing to the extreme that his religion is correct I suppose.
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Postby copain » Wed Oct 20, 2004 2:31 pm

Kasper wrote:Why are there inconsistencies in the bible? I would think because it is written/told over thousands of years during various stages of development of human society and peoples view of God changed. As stated above, people are influenced by their surroundings and as a society evolves from a more primitive war-like society to a more settled and civilized society, their view of their Gods evolve as well.


    Well that´s true the bible (especially the Old Testament) is the collection of many generations experience of life. And wether or how great the influence of God on the writers of this book ever was, this book was/is the base for keeping the jewish - and later the christian society too - in function and that for thousands of years! For comparison the society´s based on the book "Das Kommunistische Manifest" ("The Communist Manifesto", I hope I have proper translatet it :) ) written by Karl Marx - definitely a human and surly not inspired by any god - do not really work so well, do they ?
    The bible is in it`s core a good book consider "the Ten Commandments" I think even a atheist - so he puts aside commandment No 1 - No 2 which refers direct to god - will have no objections against them. And that is the crucial thing about the bible to help humans/society´s to order there life and those who belief it is originated by god will accept the guidance of the
    biblie more intensively. But this is really a matter of faith which cannot discuss in a logical way,I think!

Emma_85 wrote:I forgot to say that while you have to take God for granted religions also have to take another fact for granted - that their religion is the correct one.

    That´s likewise a fact hardly to discuss in a logical way but for practical reasons could we not say, that every religion which keep a community in function is a correct one ? :wink:
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Postby Phylax » Wed Oct 20, 2004 3:50 pm

Rhuiden hasn't actually found this thread
:D :D I'd have thought it would have acted like a red rag to a bull, Emma, such a fierce and fearless champion as he is! :D :D
I mean if you believe a God exists, then why not believe the Bible was written by God too
Certainly the two seem often to go together, but of course there are those from other monotheistic traditions for whom the Bible is not the word of God. Also, there is a rich variety of opinions within Christianity as to the extent the Bible reflects the will, word, or wisdom of God. Most, I think, (and that appears to be true of our kind correspondents above) believe it to be divinely inspired, and to contain in places God's message, though filtered - as it were - by the necessarily imperfect medium that is humanity. The extent to which this filtering has taken place continues to be the source of much theological debate, with people like Rhuiden on one extreme of the spectrum, and David Jenkins late Bishop of Durham, on the liberal/rationalist other extreme.

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Postby Turpissimus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:02 pm

I thought the Bible was meant to be the account of what Jesus said and did. I don't think that the text itself claims that God chose the precise wording or the incidents which were to be related.

Maybe the apostle Paul says something about the book being dictated by God, but I don't think the text of any of the Gospels itself claims that. Mind you I didn't read them looking for this.
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Postby Phylax » Wed Oct 20, 2004 4:18 pm

the Bible was meant to be the account of what Jesus said and did
Excellent point, Turpissime, and one that causes further problems for Rhuiden's assertion, in the form in which he states it.
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Postby klewlis » Wed Oct 20, 2004 7:02 pm

Actually, Rhuiden's view is not extreme, and is in fact the mainstream view of evangelical Christianity. If you check out the doctrinal statements of most evangelical (and even orthodox) churches, you will see statements quite similar to his about the Bible.

But here is the caveat:
The Bible as it was originally written and the translations that we have now are not the same. Our greek text of the NT is estimated to be 95% accurate to the original, but since we do not have the original texts, we can never be 100% sure. Add into that the factor of human translation, and you can end up with some discrepancies. I do not believe that the New International Version or the New American Standard or (especially) the King James Version is inerrant, but that the original texts were.

Further, there is no difficulty (in my mind, at least) in having the texts written by man in the one hand and by God in the other. As Emma said, if you believe in an all-powerful God, then this is quite possible.

I thought the Bible was meant to be the account of what Jesus said and did. I don't think that the text itself claims that God chose the precise wording or the incidents which were to be related.


Only the four gospels were meant to be accounts of what Jesus said and did. That's four books out of 66. The rest are histories of the Israelites and the first Christians, poetry, prophecy, personal letters, etc.

The passage most often referred to in the discussion of inspiration is 2 Timothy 3:16:
"All scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work."
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Postby Turpissimus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 8:13 pm

inspired by God and is profitable


"inspired" seems to be the key word there. I don't know exactly what connotations the Greek word carries, but to me "inspired" is a very weak word. Beethoven's third symphony is inspired by Napoleon, but I doubt he had much say in when the horn comes in.

Also, since this appears in Timothy, isn't there the danger of using circular arguments. If you need to prove that a certain class of writings is God's word, surely one ought not to rely on a statement in those writings. Or is there some notion that the apostles are carrying on God's mandate where Jesus left off. Is that what apostolic succession is?
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Postby copain » Wed Oct 20, 2004 8:21 pm

Turpissimus wrote:I thought the Bible was meant to be the account of what Jesus said and did. I don't think that the text itself claims that God chose the precise wording or the incidents which were to be related.


    I feel the same way about it, not the single words or phrases but the meaning of the NT as a whole is that what we can consider as a teaching which do not not totaly arise from the minds of humans.
    Furthermore consider the fact that at a time when Palestine was occupied by the romans and most jews are not really happy with that fact, word´s of brotherly love or to love your enemies or to recognize the emperor as the secular ruler ("Then render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's") is not the best idea for someone who wants to to gain attention in a serious way !
    Would not words of war and hatred against the occupation and the romans suit more for someone who claims to be the herald of a new time ?
    But Jesus did not so and preaches peace and the Bible was the medium for that new idea
    I think this is worth to consider if thats really a "invention" only from humans ?
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Postby Titus Marius Crispus » Wed Oct 20, 2004 10:17 pm

classicalclarinet wrote:
a belief just pops up from thin air with just a soft breath. Nothing's easier.


Ah, Mingshey, translate it into Greek!! :)


:-D

I was just about to say the same! That would be a very nice Greek signature-type-thing.

Kasper wrote:Tite, I understand you consider believers 'brainwashed', but surely you agree that we are all influenced by our surroundings, whether Muslim or Christian, right-wing or left-wing, etc.


I certainly agree. I must say, however, that I didn't mean to suggest that believers of any faith are brainwashed (although looking back, that's what I said). I should've said that my faith appeared to be only the result of brainwashing.

Phylax wrote:I started this thread off because of Rhuiden's categorical belief that "the Bible [is] the inerrant, infallable, complete and perfect word of God." I was interested in this because I have rarely met a Christian* who has taken such an extreme view. In fact, rather than being "puzzled" by it, I am actually alarmed and perhaps even a little frightened by it.


This belief alarms me also. There are many examples in the Old Testament, that, if taken to be absolute truth, would cause Bad Things to happen (see http://tommyland.sytes.net/drlaura.txt for some examples). Some have told me that they are able to maintain faith in the perfection of the Bible without, for example, stoning to death those who work on the Sabbath, because the New Testament changed all that. They say that Jesus will judge people, so they don't have to.

I can't quite grasp the idea of God changing his mind about what we should and should not do, but that is, of course, on account of my inability to explain things like God's Will with rationalism.
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Postby classicalclarinet » Thu Oct 21, 2004 3:03 am

definitely a human and surly not inspired by any god - do not really work so well, do they ?


It does not matter whether any God had any part in it. People only have to BELEIVE that it is God's saying, true or no.
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Postby Democritus » Thu Oct 21, 2004 5:36 am

Look at the history and origin of Protestantism as such. Some Protestants don't like to be called "Protestants," but it's important to keep in mind that these sects trace their origin to a revolt against the Catholic church.

This page gives a concise summary: http://www.victorious.org/chur40.htm

As the Roman Catholic Church continued with new independence, it added even more remarkable doctrines that were not taken from the Bible. In 1079, Pope Gregory VII declared the shocking decree of celibacy for the priesthood. ... A few of the other beliefs and practices authorized by the church were: The inquisition of alleged heretics (1184), the sale of indulgences (1190), the doctrine of transubstantiation (1215), auricular confession of sins to a priest instead of to God (1215), adoration of the wafer (1220), the forbidding of Bible reading by laity (1229), the scapular (1251), the forbidding of sharing the communion cup with laity (1414), the establishment of purgatory as an irrefutable dogma (1439), and the composition of the "Ave Maria" (1508).


Luther's ambitions of reformation emerged from his lifelong search for spiritual conclusions in his personal life. After many years of studying the scriptures, he came to reject all theology based only on tradition and embraced the idea of a personal relationship with Jesus Christ through faith. He believed that all our actions stem from God and that He chose to forgive the sinner by His sovereign grace — that we are justified not by our deeds, but by faith alone.... "The word of God cannot be received and cherished by any works whatever, but only by faith. Therefore it is clear that as the soul needs only the Word of God for its life and righteousness, so it is justified by faith alone and not by works;..."


"The Word" is scripture.

The Protestant Church generally embraces the Bible as its sole source of authority and faith, while the Catholic Church views the post-biblical traditions of the church and its Popes to have more than equal authority with scripture.


Fundamentalists identify scripture not simply as authoritative and essential, but also as infallible. Not all Protestants are fundamentalists, of course.
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Postby Rhuiden » Thu Oct 21, 2004 11:35 am

Phylax, thanks for the invitation. I actually saw this thread had been started several days ago but had not taken the time to come and read the posts. It has always been my intent to do so and I will try to in the next day or two.

I look forward to the discussion.

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Postby Phylax » Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:44 pm

It will be good to have you here, Rhuiden.
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Postby mingshey » Thu Oct 21, 2004 12:56 pm

classicalclarinet wrote:
a belief just pops up from thin air with just a soft breath. Nothing's easier.

Ah, Mingshey, translate it into Greek!! :)


Uh-oh, a heavy homework for me. Can somebody do this for me?

But let me just try a scratch...

a belief : [face=SPIonic]pi/stij[/face]
pops up: [face=SPIonic]e)kbai/nw[/face] ?
thin air: [face=SPIonic]ai)qh/r[/face]
soft breath : [face=SPIonic]pneu=ma to\ lepto/n[/face]
nothing: [face=SPIonic]ou)de/n[/face]
easier: [face=SPIonic]r(a|=on[/face]

[face=SPIonic] e)k dh\ ai)qe/roj pneu=mati leptw=| e)kbai/nei pi/stij, ou[ ou)de\n r(a|=on.[/face]
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Postby Emma_85 » Thu Oct 21, 2004 1:37 pm

Ok, what about:

[face=spionic]h( pi/stij nu~n fu/etai u(po tou ai)qe/roj su\n ou)keti h)/ tw|~ leptw|~ pneu~mati[/face] .
[face=spionic]ou)de/n r(a|~on[/face]

Not too sure about my sun and h construction there :P .
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Postby klewlis » Thu Oct 21, 2004 4:10 pm

Turpissimus wrote:
inspired by God and is profitable


"inspired" seems to be the key word there. I don't know exactly what connotations the Greek word carries, but to me "inspired" is a very weak word. Beethoven's third symphony is inspired by Napoleon, but I doubt he had much say in when the horn comes in.

Also, since this appears in Timothy, isn't there the danger of using circular arguments. If you need to prove that a certain class of writings is God's word, surely one ought not to rely on a statement in those writings. Or is there some notion that the apostles are carrying on God's mandate where Jesus left off. Is that what apostolic succession is?


"inspired" in the biblical sense means "god-breathed" ([face=SPIonic]qeopneustoj[/face]). It is not as we use it today.

It could be considered circular from an outside viewpoint. However, since it was Paul who wrote the words, it definitely has the apostolic authority.
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Postby klewlis » Thu Oct 21, 2004 4:19 pm

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:This belief alarms me also. There are many examples in the Old Testament, that, if taken to be absolute truth, would cause Bad Things to happen (see http://tommyland.sytes.net/drlaura.txt for some examples). Some have told me that they are able to maintain faith in the perfection of the Bible without, for example, stoning to death those who work on the Sabbath, because the New Testament changed all that. They say that Jesus will judge people, so they don't have to.


The example in the link is invalid for various reasons, which we can explore if you like.

I can't quite grasp the idea of God changing his mind about what we should and should not do, but that is, of course, on account of my inability to explain things like God's Will with rationalism.


While God himself does not change, his dealings with his people do. Many of the instructions given to the ancient Jews were specifically for them because of their particular position in history and culture.

I work with kids in one of my jobs. While remaining quite consistent with myself, I can deal with each child differently depending on their age, maturity, and behaviour. The kids may think I am unfair because I do not give each the same privileges and/or consequences. But I know that I cannot deal with a 9 year old boy the same way I deal with a 14 year old girl, because they have different needs. It is my view that throughout history God has changed some of the rules simply because people and cultures change.

This does NOT mean that his morality has changed. All of the basic moral principles that reflect God's nature have remained throughout both the Old and New Testaments.

:)
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Postby Rhuiden » Thu Oct 21, 2004 5:23 pm

Phylax wrote:
Rhuiden hasn't actually found this thread

I'd have thought it would have acted like a red rag to a bull, Emma, such a fierce and fearless champion as he is!


Actually this discussion does hold great interest for me. I hope I can live up to the lofty position in which you have placed me. I do not think that I qualify as a "champion" though, I am not articulate or knowledgable enough for such high praise (I am assuming that is the way you meant it). I am, though, at least willing to share my opinions.

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Postby Turpissimus » Thu Oct 21, 2004 8:12 pm

"inspired" in the biblical sense means "god-breathed" [face=SPIonic](qeopneustoj)[/face]. It is not as we use it today.


Ah! I think this must be why they make priests and pastors study Greek.

There you go Rhuiden, if you want motivation to study ancient languages for the purpose of reading scripture, there's a prime example of what you might be missing.
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Postby Episcopus » Thu Oct 21, 2004 8:44 pm

If God wrote the Vulgate whether or not directly in Latin God must really suck!
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Postby Turpissimus » Thu Oct 21, 2004 8:53 pm

If God wrote the Vulgate whether or not directly in Latin God must really suck!


Wasn't it Nietzsche who said that God wrote the worst Greek he had ever read?

' Course, I've never read the Bible in Greek.
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Postby Emma_85 » Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:09 pm

I think some parts are terrible, so yeah I think I could agree with Nietzsche on that even if I don't agree with him in other things. Even in English the Bible doesn't read that well in some passages.
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