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Date Posted:29/04/2012 5:45 AMCopy HTML

I would be very grateful to know how an unlearned person suchas myself can easily determine between which ancient or modern spiritual textsare directly inspired by God and those that are just inspired by the mind ofman.I would imagine this is critical to know because the texts andcharacters that are contained in publications such as the Bible which aredirectly of God would need to be studied and followed implicitly to remain infavour with the Creator… while texts contained in the Bible about God that have been written by theinspiration of man, as wise and profound as they may be, can and possiblyshould be taken with a grain of salt when it comes to following the true willof God.Any help along these lines is much appreciated.  
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:29/04/2012 5:58 AMCopy HTML

Hello, Guest.

If my memory serves me correctly you've raised this topic before.

Blessings,

Ian
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:29/04/2012 1:18 PMCopy HTML


Yes it has been raised before and unfortunately no-one was able to answer it. I know you already tried but if my memory serves me correctly even you ended up saying you could not prove the scriptures are of God... and then went on to say that it in fact was up to ME to prove that they're not of God... which is as rediculous as asking me to prove there are no easter bunnies on Mars.

As I said earlier I think it would be of the utmost importance to first establish if a text is of God or not before we even think about how to follow its content.. otherwise I imagine we would be in danger of Gods wrath for compelling people to follow something that is not of Him. 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:30/04/2012 2:41 AMCopy HTML

It is well noted that there are more books written about the bible than the bible itself. On one hand, no other book has caused so much controversy, debate or ridicule as the bible has. On the other, it has given to millions a certain hope and assurance in its truest form that no book or story can ever achieve. Not only a hope for a secure eternity, but a pillar and a stay as we live in a fallen, dysfunctional and greedy world brought on by mankind’s inability to solve his own problems, whose god is ‘themself’, and their quest today is to live only for to gain material wealth.

The bible is the book that reveals God to all mankind more than any other written, but still, one has to believe and be “born again” (and I don’t mean Revivalist way) of his Spirit before one ‘sees’ it is the word of God.

Scripture is “proved” to be of God as the Spirit ‘enlightens’ it to us as we read it for what it is worth.

I would say, not all that has been interpreted and said about scripture is necessarily the word of God, heaven knows, the originals have yet to be found, but the message is there for us to take hold of and be safe and secure in this life and that to come.

I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen; not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. C.S.Lewis.
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:30/04/2012 7:58 AMCopy HTML

Hello, Guest.

Yes it has been raised before and unfortunately no-one was able to answer it. I know you already tried but if my memory serves me correctly even you ended up saying you could not prove the scriptures are of God... If such represents your understanding, then I can only conclude that your memory isn't serving you correctly at all :) ... and then went on to say that it in fact was up to ME to prove that they're not of God... which is as rediculous as asking me to prove there are no easter bunnies on Mars. If my memory is correct I demonstrated there was more than sufficient proof to establish the biblical canon as the sure Word of God, when the term 'proof' is applied in its ordinary legal sense: i.e. the establishment of a fact by the use of evidence. Anything that can make a person believe that a fact or proposition is true or false.

And, as I apparently pointed out to you in our previous discussion, the burden of proof must surely rest with you to demonstrate otherwise.

As I said earlier I think it would be of the utmost importance to first establish if a text is of God or not before we even think about how to follow its content.. otherwise I imagine we would be in danger of Gods wrath for compelling people to follow something that is not of Him. Unfortunately you apparently still misunderstand the function of Scripture in the life and faith of the Christian. However, to advance this conversation perhaps you would state, succinctly, what would constitute 'proof' to your satisfaction?

Ian
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:01/05/2012 12:08 PMCopy HTML



Thank you Biblianut for your reply.

You wrote: It is well noted that there are more books written about the bible than the bible itself. On one hand, no other book has caused so much controversy, debate or ridicule as the bible has. On the other, it has given to millions a certain hope and assurance in its truest form that no book or story can ever achieve.

Although I haven't actually seen the research I am inclined to believe that your statement is probably quite true. I have no doubt (and speaking from experience) that spiritual texts such as the Bible can have a profound and positive effect on peoples lives... nevertheless it is a massive leap to then claim that those same texts are from God himself. Such claims I imagine could almost be considered blasphemous unless the person making those claims has an iron clad way of verifying it to be correct.

The bible is the book that reveals God to all mankind more than any other written,

 

This may very well be correct... but what I want to know is how do we determine which parts of the Bible or other Spiritual texts are from God himself and which parts, as wonderfully inspirational as they may be, are nothing more than the inspired mind of man and his thoughts and experiences of what he believes to be the workings of God.

 

but still, one has to believe and be “born again” (and I don’t mean Revivalist way) of his Spirit before one ‘sees’ it is the word of God.Scripture is “proved” to be of God as the Spirit ‘enlightens’ it to us as we read it for what it is worth.


 

Perhaps Biblianut this is indeed the answer I seek. It is certainly the most common and emphatic answer I get from the many people of various faiths and religions that I have spoken to over the years... and practically everyone of them also give a similar caviet as you did (and I don’t mean the xxxxxx way)

 

In fact, this was the very same answer I used to give people until I realised that practically every faith made the same claim...Of course this lead me to question how could we all be right? Are you saying that ALL spiritual texts are of God as long as we believe it to be so and if such convictions are accompanied with a feeling of enlightenment?


Somehow I don't think so. So then, based on your answer, how do we tell who really has the enlightened gift to tell which of the multitude of spiritual texts are of God... and who are those who just think they are enlightened but are in fact just experiencing a very common but very human phenomena and can't tell the difference? Surely there is a far more clear cut way to determine which texts are of God rather than relying on an experience which is easily confused to be 'of the spirit' when in fact it is NOT. (Note that I haven't even begun to explore how one then determines how that text should apply to their life)

 

but the message is there for us to take hold of and be safe and secure in this life and that to come.

 

As I mentioned before... I have no problem what so ever with using spiritual texts to inspire and give us comfort in our life... but I do take issue with claiming them to be of God unless one can absolutely know that to be the case... otherwise you may risk the wrath of God for making false claims.


 

Thank you Ian for your reply (and patience)

 

You wrote: Unfortunately you apparently still misunderstand the function of Scripture in the life and faith of the Christian.


 

Perhaps I do misunderstand... so am I wrong or nieve to think that there are texts available to us that are of God himself? And if not, then apart from the obvious advantages of living say a Christian life, why should I be compelled to follow them? If they are not of God then please just be honest and say so. And if so as a side issue: Is it possible that God has never directly given us HIS written word to follow? Is it possible that he guides each of us some other way?

 

Or if you claim there are indeed texts directly of God himself then how do I go about to verify which of the ancient or modern texts are actually of Him (and therefore should be followed) and which ones aren't?

 

However, to advance this conversation perhaps you would state, succinctly, what would constitute 'proof' to your satisfaction?


If God has or is directly influencing people throughout history and now to write done his will and intends mankind to take notice and follow these texts then surely he would also provide a simple means for the average person to be able to tell beyond all doubt, (and which couldn't be confused with human enlightened emotion), which of the countless spiritual texts are directly from him and which ones are just of the mind of Man. ie So I guess what would constitute proof for me would be something along these lines that would meet these conditions.


 

Also the answer to this question should not be ambiguous or subjective otherwise it makes a mockery of the whole concept of God giving us his 'written' Word and will to follow if He has not provided a clear cut way for us to determine which texts are indeed his will and purpose. I somehow don't believe God would put us in such an impossible to determine position.

Thank you!


 

 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:04/05/2012 8:39 AMCopy HTML

Hello, Guest.

Thank you Ian for your reply (and patience). You're welcome. You wrote: Unfortunately you apparently still misunderstand the function of Scripture in the life and faith of the Christian. Perhaps I do misunderstand... so am I wrong or nieve to think that there are texts available to us that are of God himself? If you're expecting a Bible that was lowered from heaven on a golden string untouched by human hands, then I'd say 'yes', such would be particularly naive. The orthodox Christian position is that Scripture is both a divine and a human undertaking: God's Word given to us in human words. Unlike Jesus Christ, however, who is both fully divine and fully human, the Bible should not serve as an object of worship. I say this because I have the distinct impression that you believe the place of Scripture in Christianity is analogous to the place of the Qur'an in Islam. Let me assure you that such isn't the case. And if not, then apart from the obvious advantages of living say a Christian life, why should I be compelled to follow them? If they are not of God then please just be honest and say so. And if so as a side issue: Is it possible that God has never directly given us HIS written word to follow? Is it possible that he guides each of us some other way? We covered this ground adequately enough the last time: Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians.  


To respond to your other question, God certainly guides individual believers in several ways. He does so through Scripture both privately read and publicly preached; through the ministrations of other believers, individually and corporately; and through the gentle leading of his Spirit, again individually and corporately. However it is Scripture that serves as the objective rule against which all subjective impressions and leadings are either confirmed or rejected.
 

Or if you claim there are indeed texts directly of God himself then how do I go about to verify which of the ancient or modern texts are actually of Him (and therefore should be followed) and which ones aren't? See above. 


However, to advance this conversation perhaps you would state, succinctly, what would constitute 'proof' to your satisfaction? If God has or is directly influencing people throughout history and now to write done his will and intends mankind to take notice and follow these texts then surely he would also provide a simple means for the average person to be able to tell beyond all doubt, (and which couldn't be confused with human enlightened emotion), which of the countless spiritual texts are directly from him and which ones are just of the mind of Man. ie So I guess what would constitute proof for me would be something along these lines that would meet these conditions. I read and re-read that lengthy sentence a few times, and try as I might I simply couldn't find anything that approached a clear, succinct and unequivocal answer! This reinforces my earlier contention that you simply don't understand the function of Scripture in the life and faith of the Christian. It also makes me wonder if your intention, here, is simply to be disingenuous.
 

Also the answer to this question should not be ambiguous or subjective otherwise it makes a mockery of the whole concept of God giving us his 'written' Word and will to follow if He has not provided a clear cut way for us to determine which texts are indeed his will and purpose. Who says it's up to each of us individually to determine which texts constitute God's Word? Given that greater than 99.9% of Christians lack the specific skills, training and technical expertise needed to be able to make informed assessments of "what's what" regarding the biblical texts, how can you possibly suggest (presumably with a straight face) that it remains a strictly individual decision? What criteria would each person use to decide? How would they put the theory into practice? And given that you've rasied a concern several times now about subjectivity, how is what you propose about individual determination not a perfect example of a thoroughly subjective methodology? I somehow don't believe God would put us in such an impossible to determine position. Apparently you would.


Ian


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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:05/05/2012 11:40 AMCopy HTML



 

 Again thank you for your time,

You wrote: If you're expecting a Bible that was lowered from heaven on a golden string untouched by human hands, then I'd say 'yes', such would be particularly naive.

Now that you mention it, perhaps with the benefit of hindsight this would have been a better option for God to take. There would be no possibility of confusion as to which texts were of him or not plus it would have avoided any chance that man could 'muddy' Gods direction by unwittingly adding his own thoughts to the scriptures.

Anyway I think I was giving a bit of leeway by my opening question which was "which ancient or modern spiritual texts are directly inspired by God (through man) and which are those that are just inspired solely by the mind of man?"
=====================


The orthodox Christian position is that Scripture is both a divine and a human undertaking: God's Word given to us in human words... the Bible should not serve as an object of worship. I say this because I have the distinct impression that you believe the place of Scripture in Christianity is analogous to the place of the Qu'ran in Islam

I don't think I am suggesting the Bible should or needs to be an object of worship... I am just seeking to know how to determine which parts of it are of God and which are of the mind of man. Is that not a reasonable enough request especially, as far as I can tell, most main stream religions claim that the Bible is the word of God?

You say it is a joint undertaking between God and man which presumably is still happening to this day. Surely this must give rise to the possibility that many of the Spiritual texts that exist on earth have been 'muddied' and manipulated by the thoughts of man and therefore should be treated with a great deal of scepticism. To me, your answer makes it even more imperative that we have a clear cut way of determining which texts are the 'pure' message of God and which aren't... because I certainly don't want to follow something and to be claiming it is of God when clearly there is a very good chance it isn't.

On the other hand however I have no problem following spiritual concepts where people are honest and openly admit that this is what 'they' think might be Gods will for us or what 'they' think is a good way to live... and use references which they think are quite inspired but most importantly... stop short of the blasphemous claim that what they are teaching is the will of and direction of God himself.

As far as I am aware orthodox religion does indeed claim that what they teach is 'Gods' will (as opposed to what they 'think' might be Gods will, or what they think is a good way to live - ie as in following the teachings of Jesus) and they largely use references from the Bible which they claim IS the 'Word of God' himself (as opposed to simply referring to inspired and prudent ancient texts written by the minds of wise men from the past, drawing from their own experiences and subjective observations of God working in their life) If I am wrong in the assumption that mainstream religion claim the Bible is the divine Word of 'God' then please correct me.

==================
Unlike Jesus Christ, however, who is both fully divine and fully human


Sorry, you've lost me a bit here. I understand the 'fully human' part but not sure how you arrive at the 'fully divine' part. Are you referring to the mythology of Christ or are you privy to factual information that no-one else is? Or are you just suggesting that all mankind is fully divine?

=====================
Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians

Yes that's nice and probably a great philosophy to live by... but doesn't for one second mean that it is of or from God. Unless of course my concept of God is completely wrong... my perception of God is that of a very real, very alive, all powerful being who is the supreme commander and creator of the universe... not just a religious concept made up to promote a way of life.

==========================

However it is Scripture that serves as the objective rule against which all subjective impressions and leadings are either confirmed or rejected

Why would anyone use Scripture as the objective rule when clearly it is itself a collection of subjective impressions... developed in collaboration with the mind of man?... unless of course one had no interest in following the true will of God and just wanted to play religion using a book they can pretend is Gods word but never really bothering to determine if it is or not.
====================

I read and re-read that lengthy sentence a few times, and try as I might I simply couldn't find anything that approached a clear, succinct and unequivocal answer! 

Yes perhaps I was a bit vague... but if I already knew what would constitute a definitive way of determining which scriptures are by the direct inspiration and will of God himself and which are simply from the inspired mind of man then I would already have my answer. 

This is where I am hoping that people like you may be able to point me in the right direction... after all, you seem to have spent most of your life studying it... I'm sure you wouldn't waste so much time and effort doing so unless you had first checked that what you were dealing with was the genuine article from God himself?

==================

This reinforces my earlier contention that you simply don't understand the function of Scripture in the life and faith of the Christian.



And yes maybe I don't understand their function.... but at this stage I am simply seeking to determine how to sort out those scriptures which are of God and therefore must be given weighty consideration and those which are of man and would therefore be up to my discretion as to whether to take them on board or not. Again, if any Scripture is not of God then please just plainly say this and point out which ones... and if any are of God then please plainly show how one can determine which ones they are.

Why would anyone be interested in following or studying the ancient writings of someone else's concept of God, ie the Bible, if it is not actually from God himself? At the very least it would be a sham. I'm not saying that history or even religion is unimportant but apart from a historical curiosity it would be of no more significance than studying and following the ancient Mayan civilisation and their writings.

==========================



It also makes me wonder if your intention, here, is simply to be disingenuous.

My purpose here is to seek the truth and possibly to determine if you and others are being disingenuous or even blasphemous in their claims of divinity of Scripture


=====================================

Who says it's up to each of us individually to determine which texts constitute God's Word? Given that greater than 99.9% of Christians lack the specific skills, training and technical expertise needed to be able to make informed assessments of "what's what" regarding the biblical texts, how can you possibly suggest (presumably with a straight face) that it remains a strictly individual decision?

This statement seems to be a little at odds with your earlier claim where you state that "God certainly guides individual believers. He does so through Scripture privately read... through the ministrations of other believers, individually...and through the gentle leading of his Spirit, again individually"

....anyway that aside for the moment... are you saying here that it is NOT given for the average individual to be able to determine for themselves which spiritual texts are of God and which aren't? That it in fact should only be left up to the educated in that field who presumably are not influenced by the subjective mind of man?

If so then that of course begs the rather obvious question of how does the average person then determine which 'expert' they should entrust with the critical responsibility of choosing which texts are directly inspired by God himself and which are just of man? And even more to the point... what exactly are the methods these educated people use to determine which is Gods word and which isn't? If anyone knows what they are I would be delighted to know even if I am just one of the uneducated lacking technical expertise.


==============================

What criteria would each person use to decide? How would they put the theory into practice?

Ummmm... I think those are my questions too.

======================================


And given that you've rasied a concern several times now about subjectivity, how is what you propose about individual determination not a perfect example of a thoroughly subjective methodology?


 

Yes well perhaps this gets right to the heart of my concerns. At last we seem to have some common ground in that we agree that us individuals are very prone to subjective behaviour and given that the Bible and other spiritual texts were and are, as far as I am aware, written by various individuals who are no different to us today gives me no confidence in the claims the Bible is the divine word of God. Which is why it is imperative that there be a way to discern what writings are of God (if in fact there be any) and what's not.

And while we are on the subject of subjectivity I will make the personal comment that unless there comes to light a viable way to be able to determine what actually is Gods word and what isn't and if in fact the discerning of Gods will for my life boils down to relying on the subjective writings and mind of man to decide what it is... then I would much rather, and am in fact obligated to take the responsibility, that it be MY subjective mind that decides what is Gods will for my life rather than yours or that of someone who lived centuries ago.

I can certainly take suggestions and be guided by you and others from the past about what they think it should be, but in the end it must be what I believe to be the right leading of God in my life... not someone else's best guess or subjective observation (ie the Bible) of what is Gods will for me and my life.

To a certain extent I believe that each and everyone of us has a 'bible' just waiting to be written based on our own observations and experiences of God in our life which would be just as valid to the individual, if not more so, than the Bible itself. It is beyond me why so many people are so dogmatic about sticking to the thoughts written by others in the Bible when they have their own God experiences to be writting down and be led by. 

If there be a judgement day I don't think anyone will be able to use the excuse "well I was just following what the Bible said" to absolve their responsibility to have followed the personal leading of God in their life when they could and should have reasonably known that the Bible was NOT the word of God but that of man.

Don't get me wrong... I love the Bible and its teachings but am sensible enough to keep it in perspective. And again don't think for one moment I would begrudge anyone studying and embracing the tenants of Christs teaching and applying it to their personal life as long as they don't claim the Gospels are the will and teaching of the Creator himself that I must follow (unless of course they have a way to show me those teachings are the express will of God for everyone)

My best guess would be that much of Christs life and teachings were indeed inspired maybe even by God... but are they appropriate for me to follow and apply to my own life?... well that's for me to determine...at the very least I think they are an excellent pattern for anyone wanting to discover how to find their own leading from God and to live a fullfilled and happy life (again these are just my opinions just as the Bible is full of someone elses opinions)

That being said I am still very open to any one's comments on how one can reliably determine which texts are of God and which ones aren't or how to find one of those educated people who can explain how it is done.


 

PS: Someone once told me that numerics was a way of telling what was divine text and what wasn't. Does anyone know if this method holds up to scrutiny?


 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:05/05/2012 1:52 PMCopy HTML

Hello, Guest.

I initially responded to each of your points, in turn, but it proved an unproductive exercise that resulted in an unnecessarily long and repetitive post. Consequently I've pared it back to the following, briefer reflections.

From my perspective your reasoning throughout has been significantly flawed and is a prime example of the logical fallacy known as post hoc ergo propter hoc. More on this later. You began your quest here by claiming to wanting to know how to discern God's Word inscripturated. Unfortunately, when presented with a logically consistent and historically validated response, you chose to dismiss it out-of-hand. Simply ignoring another's position by referring to it as 'nice' isn't to defeat or discredit its central argument; to do this requires a better, more compelling counter argument.

Next you've consistently used words that are pivotal to the discussion, but then without properly understanding either their meanings or significance. In epistemology when something is labelled 'objective' it corresponds to reality existing outside the thinking subject. Conversely, 'subjective' corresponds to reality existing inside the thinking subject. No matter which way you might care to slice or dice it the Christian Bible is objective, just as a rock or a building is objective. But the central belief underpinning your position, being based on your thoughts and ideas, is thoroughly subjective. Ergo I found it fascinating that you went on to dismiss as irrelevant an objective source (i.e. Christian Scripture), to posit instead a god with a will for your life that was completely internalised and comprehensively individualistic! Naive indeed.

The clincher for me came during my reading your latest post. It became obvious very quickly that 'valid perspective' = what you're prepared to accept. I've no doubt that you would happily claim to possessing an open mind. However, the evidence provided through your responses to date disproves the claim. And simply assuming that you're correct is quite different to demonstrating that you are, in fact, correct. As I pointed out to you the last time that you raised this issue on the forum: it isn't Scripture that is the ultimate expression and record of God's will for humanity, but Jesus Christ.

Therefore, rather than continuing to repeat myself ad infinitum in the hope that you'll take note of what I present and engage with my positions, I commend to you instead a re-reading of what's gone thus far.

In closing, several general observations: First, you've claimed to be wanting 'proofs' that Christian Scripture reveals the will of God for humankind. And yet when prompted you can't provide any examples of such that you would be prepared to accept. Second, you've presented the argument that an individual can rightly discern for him/herself what properly consistitutes God's Word inscripturated. However, when challenged you've been unable to explain 'how' this would be done, neither can you reconcile the logical dislocation caused by the first observation. Third, you've subsequently made it clear that your conception of God and his will is thoroughly individual and subjective. Yet you continue to rail against 'subjectivism' in your demand for 'objective' proofs from me. Given observations first and second, observation third must be evaluated as noting a position that is internally inconsistent, logically fallacious, and therefore a nonsense (i.e. post hoc ergo propter hoc).

For these reasons I fail to see any point in continuing with this line of discussion at the present time. It's a waste of my time, my keystrokes and the forum's bandwith. Of course I think it self-evident that your intention all along was to be disengenuous ;)

Ian 
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:06/05/2012 7:24 AMCopy HTML


Hi Ian,

I can assure you that my quest for truth is genuine but not being a particularly educated person I deal with things at face value and smell a rat if I sense that people are being dishonest or trying to 'pull the wool over my eyes' with reasonings that are designed to distract the reader from the heart of the matter rather than answer the question directly... a bit like politicians who duck and weave trying to defend a position which they don't want to admit they know to be flawed.

For example when I asked how one should go about to determine between which spiritual texts are the 'pure' word of God himself and which ones have been 'muddied' by the mind of man the only answer I could find you gave in this discussion was... Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians. Now admittedly I did say well that's 'nice, and I certainly didn't mean to offend, but the fact is, and still remains, I totally fail to understand how that directly answers my question. In fact you referred to it as a logically consistent and historically validated response but give no explanation what so ever as to how you come to that conclusion or, more to the point, how it even remotely addresses my original question. So to me it just comes across as someone arrogant using big words to try and bs or bully someone into accepting that what they say must be right.... not saying that was your intention but that is certainly how you come across.

Next you've consistently used words that are pivotal to the discussion, but then without properly understanding either their meanings or significance. Yeh maybe so, but I did warn you right from the start that I am an uneducated person. Anyway, what really matters is that you are an educated person and should be smart enough to understand the context in which I am using them.

  
No matter which way you might care to slice or dice it the Christian Bible is objective, just as a rock or a building is objective. Ok, so you say that the Bible like a building are objective... I'm simply trying to find out who is the architect. Everyone keeps telling me it is God (not man) who is the architect but wont or can't provide me with one scrap of evidence as to how they know that to be so.

 

But your central belief, being based on your thoughts and ideas, is completely subjective. . . I freely admit that my thoughts and ideas are completely subjective just as I must conclude so are the scriptures (due to the lack of any evidence to the contrary).

If the original writers of the scriptures penned their thoughts and observations based on their own subjective reasonings then how does that make them any different to mine? And more to the point... why should I place any more weight on their thoughts over mine or other spiritual texts.
 

I've no doubt that you would happily claim to possessing an open mind. However, the evidence provided through your responses to date disproves it  At least I am attempting to give a response and give you some insight as to why I have reached my present conclusions. You give me nothing but smoke screens and rhetoric.

And simply assuming that you're correct is quite different to demonstrating that you are, in fact, correct  I don't think I once claimed to be 'correct' but have made it very clear that until evidence to the contrary comes to light I am morally bound to NOT make bogus claims about the divinity of Gods word. Please give me something (anything) concrete that proves otherwise and I will happily change my point of view.

 

First, you've claimed to be wanting 'proofs' that Christian Scripture reveals the will of God for humankind. And yet when prompted you can't provide any examples of such that you would be prepared to accept As I keep saying if I knew what the evidence was then I would already have my answer... that's why I have thrown it open to see if anyone may know of anything out there which would justify me taking a hard line position that can back up the claims of divinity of Scripture.

Right now I am happy to consider anything as long as it is not subjective because that doesn't prove anything and only serves to reinforce my original conclusions about the writers of the Bible... which by the way I don't have a problem with... I only have a problem with people who claim the Bible was not written from a subjective viewpoint and then fail to provide any evidence as to how they reach that conclusion... and then study it and attempt to ram it down the throats of others as if it were the word of God himself


Second, you've presented the argument that an individual can rightly discern for him/herself what properly consistitutes God's word inscripturated. However, when challenged you've been unable to explain 'how' this would be done, neither can you reconcile the logical dislocation caused by the first observation  All I am saying is if the Bible is nothing more than a wonderfully inspired, but nevertheless entirely subjective collection of the thoughts and observations of man throughout history than how does that make it any more important than the subjective enlightenment that you or I may have when we consider the weightier matters of life and the creation.

Sure, if one wants to study and gain insight as to what was the real message those subjective Bible writers were trying to impart with respect to the times and the environment they were living in etc etc, then knock yourself out and do all the theological courses you can lay your hands on... just don't insult me by claiming you now know more about the will of God when all you have done is spent years studying other peoples opinions of God.

 

Third, you've subsequently made it clear that your conception of God and his will is thoroughly individual and subjective. Yet you continue to rail against 'subjectivism' in your demand for 'objective' proofs from me. The only time I have a problem with your arguments  Again, the only time I have a problem with your arguments being 'subjective' is when you present them as if they're not.  I take a very dim view on dishonesty and the inability for someone to admit when they are wrong.

Given observations first and second, observation third must be evaluated as noting a position that is internally inconsistent, logically fallacious, and therefore a nonsense Hence, I fail to see any point in continuing with this line of discussion at the present time. It's a waste of my keystrokes and the site's bandwith You miss the whole point of this post... the reason for this post is not so much for me to convince anyone of my position but for someone to convince me of the claims of divinity of scripture and how to tell which ones are and which ones are not. And right now I must conclude that your reasons for not wanting or being able to do this is because you have nothing to stand on and worse still wont admit it. Further evidence of this is that you instead resort to trying to humiliate your fellow poster and attacking my comments rather than presenting any new information to back up your position.

Finally I think it self-evident that your intention all along was to be disengenuous ;) Isn't interesting that two people can come to the same conclusion about each other :o)

 

 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:06/05/2012 8:45 AMCopy HTML

Hello, Guest.

You've admitted several times that you wouldn't be able to recognise the answers to your questions when given, and yet you now suggest that because you lack the necessary conviction that my own must be false? Perhaps you should think a little less highly of your capacity to "smell a rat", "recognise dishonesty" or identify apparent "weaknesses" in the arguments of others, and be a little more receptive to the possibility that some of us have more insight than you credit us with given that some of us have investigated the matter to our own satisfaction. And of course this is not now, nor ever has been, a question of "politics", "smoke screens" or "rhetoric"; but one of epsitemology, historicity, and logical reasoning.

The simple fact is that on two separate occasions over the years I've presented you with considered responses that addressed all of your questions. The impediment, from my perspective, is that you're just plain unwilling to think through where these responses lead in order to grasp the final implications for yourself. Given that you've demonstrated that you haven't yet got a hold of the starting point, why is it that you think you can grip up the ending? And to correct yet another false assumption of yours, noone here has demanded that you must believe that the Christian Bible is God's Word to humankind. Accept it or reject it as you will. Given that the choice remains yours, I'm surprised at your overtly adversarial attitude. After all, I won't lose a wink of sleep tonight if you choose to disagree with me, consequently I'm somewhat surprised how quick you are to personalise my rejection of your views because I found them naive, uninformed and simplistic.

Here are a few final bits of advice offered for your reflection: first, sort out your facts. Then become a little better acquainted with the history of the subject matter, and the key vocabulary. And finally, do try being a little more open-minded in your engagements with others. People in your position really should ditch the 'tude until you have the skills, the knowledge and the personal experience to justify it.

In closing, this forum exists to discuss, dispute and debate Revivalism and her unique teachings. I think you would be happier somewhere the various merits of competing postmodern spiritualities are the main event.

My 'pearls of wisdom' for the day ;)

Ian
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:06/05/2012 12:43 PMCopy HTML

 

and be a little more receptive to the possibility of you being completely mistaken in your views Ian Ian Ian ... you don't really read my posts do you. How often do I need to remind you that I am completely open to changing my views as soon as someone can present a credible explanation to my question on this thread. Here again you continue to duck and weave and not present any argument to support your position


Given that I'm quite a bit more philosophically sophisticated  Well if that be the case why do you find it so difficult to give a straight answer to my specific question on this thread? Surely it's not because I am so unsophisticated for you to answer such a lowly being. I have no doubt that you are far more educated than Jesus and the apostles ever were but I do appreciate if you could make a bit more effort to connect to the common man such as I.


The simple fact is that on two separate occasions over the years, I've presented you with considered responses that addressed all of your questions. Well that is certainly debatable but one thing is for sure you are NOT addressing the question I am now bringing up on this thread. Again you duck and weave to avoid answering the present question which has nothing to do with any discussions we've had in the past which were about slightly different matters


Further, and to correct another false accusation that you've made, noone here has demanded that you must believe that the Christian Bible is God's Word to humankind  Ok, thank you. Finally some meaningful dialogue (even though it still doesn't really address my question) .... so is the Christian Bible God's Word to humankind? 

If so how do we know that?

And if not how do you explain the often dogmatic contention that people often get involved in over meaning of scripture... if its not of God but of man is it really that important?


 

Here are a few final bits of advice offered for your reflection: (1) sort out your facts. (2) Become a little better acquainted with the history and philsophical underpinnings of the subject matter, never mind the vocabulary. And,(3) do try being a little more open-minded in your engagements with others.Groan.... and once again lets fill up the post with more diversion and drivel.... anything to avoid answering the question. But thanks for the advice I guess.


 

Anyway, if you feel like answering there is no rush as I am likely to be absent from this forum for a couple of weeks... that will also give you plenty of time to formulate a far more considered and intelligent response to my question than what you've been able to dish up so far  :o)

Peace

 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:06/05/2012 1:32 PMCopy HTML

Guest,

As I've pointed out several times now, I've already answered your question. Clearly. Succinctly. Fully. Now if you don't want to believe that my response was credible, so be it. But please, don't accuse me of "ducking and weaving" when I've done neither :)

This is what I posted in my reply to you on 4 May 12. It is materially the same as my rejoinder the last time that you raised this question on the forum:

We covered this ground adequately enough the last time: Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians.

I really don't know how I could be any clearer.

Ian

P.S. I revised my previous post well before you submitted your reply. Is there any reason that you failed to take this into account?
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 6:48 AMCopy HTML

Reply to Didaktikon

Guest,

As I've pointed out several times now, I've already answered your question. Clearly. Succinctly. Fully.

Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians.

I really don't know how I could be any clearer.

Ian



Hi Ian,

After many weeks of considering your answer I am still no closer to understanding how it even comes close to addressing my original question.

I asked: How can the average person determine which Spiritual texts are directly inspired of God and therefore must be followed (inc scriptures ancient or modern contained in the Bible, Book of Mormon, Koran and later works etc etc ) and those texts that are no more than made up by the inspired mind of man? (as wise and as inspirational as they may be but therefore carry no real authority when it comes to following the true will and purpose of God)

You answered... the way the average person can determine which scriptures are of God and which ones aren't is... "Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians".

You then even went on to say... "I really don't know how I could be any clearer".
Quite frankly I don't think you could have been any more obscure.

Your answer gives absolutely NO direction, NO method and NO instruction whatsoever on the steps the average person can take to validate the divinity of the particular Spiritual text they may be reading. Furthermore you give no explanation as to how or why Jesus Christ and others so called "affirming" the scriptures makes all the scriptures up to that point to be of God.... (yes I do understand how the Bible scriptures represents the authority Christians use to run their organisations, rule their personal lives and give them a humans view of what God might be like... but not how they know or can claim them to be of God himself)

Please do not underestimate the vital importance of knowing the answer to this question before all else. Without this understanding first established it is absolutely pointless to delve into the meaning of any scripture with the view to claiming it is Gods will and purpose for mankind to follow.... because anything else is just mans opinion of God's will.

If you don't really know the answer to my question then just say so.... I respect honesty and integrity.

If you DO know the answer to my question then please articulate it in a way that is usable and would make sense to me and perhaps even convince the average, but intelligent, non Christian or the native who has lived their entire life in the jungle and worshipped rocks.

So again, if you or anyone else would like to help me with my question then please answer the following sentence... "the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"...

 


 

Thank you for your time.


 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 8:04 AMCopy HTML

Guest,

After many weeks of considering your answer I am still no closer to understanding how it even comes close to addressing my original question. And? I struggle seeing how your inhibited capacity to follow a logical argument through to its inevitable conclusion should be my concern ;)

I asked: How can the average person determine which Spiritual texts are directly inspired of God and therefore must be followed (inc scriptures ancient or modern contained in the Bible, Book of Mormon, Koran and later works etc etc ) and those texts that are no more than made up by the inspired mind of man? (as wise and as inspirational as they may be but therefore carry no real authority when it comes to following the true will and purpose of God). You answered... "Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians".

You then even went on to say... "I really don't know how I could be any clearer". Quite frankly I don't think you could have been any more obscure. I suppose there must be something of a '2 Corinthians 4:3' thing at work then.

Your answer gives absolutely NO direction, NO method and NO instruction whatsoever on the steps the average person can take to validate the divinity of the particular Spiritual text they may be reading. Furthermore you give no explanation as to how or why Jesus Christ and others so called "affirming" the scriptures makes all the scriptures up to that point to be of God.... (yes I do understand how the Bible scriptures represents the authority Christians use to run their organisations, rule their personal lives and give them a humans view of what God might be like... but not how they know or can claim them to be of God himself). I'm sorry, but this charge of yours should concern me why, exactly?

Please do not underestimate the vital importance of knowing the answer to this question before all else. As I'm the believer enjoying the saving relationship in Christ; further, given that I do know the answer to this apparently Sphinx-like riddle that you perceive there being, I imagine I've neither underestimated nor overestimated anything. Without this understanding first established it is absolutely pointless to delve into the meaning of any scripture with the view to claiming it is Gods will and purpose for mankind to follow.... because anything else is just mans opinion of God's will. Forgive me, but yours is simply one man's opinion about what he doesn't believe constitutes God's will.

If you don't really know the answer to my question then just say so.... I respect honesty and integrity. Do you though? You've left me with the distinct impression that you'd struggle respecting any views on this issue that would differ from your own. However, as I've provided you with the simple answer to your concern several times over the years, the lack of clarity on the issue rests with you and not me. Ergo, the dilemma is and remains yours and not mine.

If you DO know the answer to my question then please articulate it in a way that is usable and would make sense to me and perhaps even convince the average, but intelligent, non Christian or the native who has lived their entire life in the jungle and worshipped rocks. Well, here's the thing: I've not experienced too much difficulty in convincing 'the average, intelligent non-Christian' about the veracity of the message articulated by Christ as recorded in Christian Scripture. And whilst I can't speak for the natives who worship rocks (I've never come across any of 'em, the truth be told); I suppose I have encountered my fair share of people who think more highly of their own scepticism and rhetorical 'cunning' than the facts or common sense warrants. And interestingly enough, more than few of them have come from your former Revivalist sect!

So again, if you or anyone else would like to help me with my question then please answer the following sentence... "the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"... I'd be surprised if anyone would bother; your 'concern/question' is clearly disingenuous and frivolous.

Can I take it the GRC Facebook site isn't meeting your needs for 'communication' nowadays? :)

Ian

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 11:43 AMCopy HTML



 

Oh Ian...I have never seen anyone come up with so many ways to not answer a question while simultaneously pretending they are as you do...

===========================================

And? I struggle seeing how your inhibited capacity to follow a logical argument through to its inevitable conclusion should be my concern ;) and I'm sorry, but this charge of yours should concern me why, exactly?

Well I guess because you were the one pretending to answer the question you may have had an interest to know that your statements make not one ounce of sense. I would have thought that clarity and effectiveness of communication would be a priority in your profession. I think it is important that you should at least try to be coherent in your answers ;)


================================

given that I do know the answer to this apparently Sphinx-like riddle

Sensational... then rather than keep it to yourself please share... "the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"...

So why do I get the feeling that you will do everything in your power to avoid finishing off this sentence and continue to duck and weave?


==================================

Forgive me, but yours is simply one man's opinion about what he doesn't believe constitutes God's will.

Yes, that is correct... just as is yours and indeed all the writers of the Bible... unless that is you have a method to determine otherwise. If so, please share... I really am open to any sensible answer you might have. I have a feeling though that you are far from open to accepting that I maybe correct, despite the fact that you have been unable to provide anything other than mumbo jumbo that bore no resemblance to the discussion at hand.

===========================================

You've left me with the distinct impression that you'd struggle respecting any views on this issue that would differ from your own. However, as I've provided you with the simple answer to your concern several times over the years, the lack of clarity on the issue rests with you and not me. Ergo, the dilemma is and remains yours and not mine.

What amazes me is that you continue to talk about this so called "simple" answer you have apparently given me yet I find it no-where on this post.... NO-WHERE... oh wait.... that's because you never gave one.

==================================================

Well, here's the thing: I've not experienced too much difficulty in convincing 'the average, intelligent non-Christian' about the veracity of the message articulated by Christ as recorded in Christian Scripture

Of this I have no doubt. Most people with a belief in God will accept hook line and sinker whatever you quote from the bible as long as you can do it with conviction and reasonable articulation... the revival centres are full of people like this. But I can be fairly sure that few have ever asked you to first of all verify that the scriptures you quote actually come from God and not man... most people just take it for granted and never question its authenticity.

=======================================================

I'd be surprised if anyone would bother; your 'concern/question' is clearly disingenuous and frivolous.

... and once again, rather than trying to answer the question you try to pass it off as if it doesn't matter. So who here is really the disingenuous one?

================================

Can I take it the GRC Facebook site isn't meeting your needs for 'communication' nowadays? :)

What is it with you and the GRC Facebook crowd? It's almost like you are jealous of them. Truth is... I have never participated in that forum nor am I a member of it.

============================================


While I do give you some credit for at least attempting to interact with me it has become fairly obvious that you are either unable or unwilling to provide a coherent solution to my simple question. If you decide to respond to my post is there any chance you could just simply start with this sentence..."the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"... and then answer it... no need for smoke and mirrors, ducking and weaving, misdirection or the myriad of other devices you use to avoid actually answering it :)


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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 12:38 PMCopy HTML

Hello, Crying Guy.

Oh Ian...I have never seen anyone come up with so many ways to not answer a question while simultaneously pretending they are as you do... Actually I reckon this thread, and the earlier one from a few years ago, adequately demonstrates otherwise. Well I guess because you were the one pretending to answer the question you may have had an interest to know that your statements make not one ounce of sense. I would have thought that clarity and effectiveness of communication would be a priority in your profession. I think it is important that you should at least try to be coherent in your answers ;) Ha, ha, ha. You're the only person I've enountered who has ever suggested otherwise. Consequently, I'll let you decide how credible that makes your claim ;)

As I'm the believer enjoying the saving relationship in Christ; further, given that I do know the answer to this apparently Sphinx-like riddle that you perceive there being, I imagine I've neither underestimated nor overestimated anything. Sensational... then rather than keep it to yourself please share... "the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"... So why do I get the feeling that you will do everything in your power to avoid finishing off this sentence and continue to duck and weave? Concrete handbags.

Forgive me, but yours is simply one man's opinion about what he doesn't believe constitutes God's will. Yes, that is correct... just as is yours and indeed all the writers of the Bible... unless that is you have a method to determine otherwise. 'Yep', I was clearly correct in questioning your English comprehension skills earlier. Go back and look at what I wrote, then spend a moment or two reflecting on your response. If so, please share... I really am open to any sensible answer you might have. I have a feeling though that you are far from open to accepting that I maybe correct, despite the fact that you have been unable to provide anything other than mumbo jumbo that bore no resemblance to the discussion at hand. I generally tolerate, even humour, silly people with silly points-of-view. However, I must admit that your attempts at making an artform of petitio principii is becoming a little tedious.

Well, here's the thing: I've not experienced too much difficulty in convincing 'the average, intelligent non-Christian' about the veracity of the message articulated by Christ as recorded in Christian Scripture. Of this I have no doubt. Most people with a belief in God will accept hook line and sinker whatever you quote from the bible as long as you can do it with conviction and reasonable articulation... the revival centres are full of people like this. There's a pattern developing here. Go back and re-read what I wrote, then reflect yet again on how you responded. But I can be fairly sure that few have ever asked you to first of all verify that the scriptures you quote actually come from God and not man... most people just take it for granted and never question its authenticity. Really? Those university-educated professionals with whom I occasionally discuss Christianity and her truth-claims are far more critical and sophisticated in their thinking than you would credit them with being. And my vocational circle is literally jammed full of such people, many of whom have formally studied philosophy, and so who understand suffciently the importance of questions of epsitemology. Ergo I feel compelled to ask: do you believe yourself to be the brightest 'spark' in this here universe, after an Archimedes-esque fashion? If you do, then I feel compelled to quote Darryl Kerrigan: " ... tell him he's dreaming." :)

Can I take it the GRC Facebook site isn't meeting your needs for 'communication' nowadays? :) What is it with you and the GRC Facebook crowd? It's almost like you are jealous of them. That must be it :) Truth is... I have never participated in that forum nor am I a member of it. So you're more the 'Lone Ranger' ex-GRC type, huh? The question was provoked by your earlier angst concerning my involvement in the former GRC pages :P

While I do give you some credit for at least attempting to interact with me it has become fairly obvious that you are either unable or unwilling to provide a coherent solution to my simple question. If you decide to respond to my post is there any chance you could just simply start with this sentence..."the way to determine which scriptures or texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"... and then answer it... no need for smoke and mirrors, ducking and weaving, misdirection or the myriad of other devices you use to avoid actually answering it :) Ha, ha, ha. One thing at least is obvious, but I'm not sure it has to do with my capacity to engage in simple apologetics with the uninformed ;)

Ian

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 2:51 PMCopy HTML



 

Hmmmm.... now let me see................................. oh surprise surprise, not a single attempt to expand on the answer to the question!


Now just to be perfectly clear here... if a native, who had no real knowledge of the Bible and a limited grasp of English came out of the jungle and asked you how he could determine which scriptures contained in the Bible, the book of Mormon and the Koran, were of God and which weren't your answer would be..."Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians".

And if they then said (and quite rightly so)... wt* are you talking about... your answer would be (and I quote)... "I've already answered your question. Clearly. Succinctly. I really don't know how I could be any clearer".

Are you seriously suggesting this is the most coherent and reasonable response you could give such a person?

(I would also like to point out that this is in fact the only answer you have given on this entire thread on this discussion... and even this response was a bit like extracting teeth).

If so, is there any chance you could persuade.... "Those university-educated professionals with whom I occasionally discuss Christianity and her truth-claims are far more critical and sophisticated in their thinking than you would credit them with being. And my vocational circle is literally jammed full of such people, many of whom have formally studied philosophy"... to attempt an answer to my question because it is obviously beyond your intellectual capacity to do so.

And please remind them to just simply start with this sentence..."the way to determine which scriptures and texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to"... and then get them to answer it... no need for smoke and mirrors, ducking and weaving, misdirection or the myriad of other devices you use to avoid actually answering it  :)

Thank you.


 


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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:23/09/2012 9:03 PMCopy HTML

Crying Guy, once more.

Hmmmm.... now let me see................................. oh surprise surprise, not a single attempt to expand on the answer to the question! There was no need to expand on the answer, given that it was simple enough to grasp :) Now just to be perfectly clear here... if a native, who had no real knowledge of the Bible and a limited grasp of English came out of the jungle and asked you how he could determine which scriptures contained in the Bible, the book of Mormon and the Koran, were of God and which weren't your answer would be..."Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians". And if they then said (and quite rightly so)... wt* are you talking about... your answer would be (and I quote)... "I've already answered your question. Clearly. Succinctly. I really don't know how I could be any clearer"

Are you seriously suggesting this is the most coherent and reasonable response you could give such a person? I think you're somewhat confused about what we've been discussing, and the parties involved in said discussion. Consider, we haven't been addressing the needs of the rock-worshipping native. To the contrary, we've been reviewing the intellectual and pragmatic foibles of little ol' you. Consequently, the approach that I'd provide to someone who had never heard of Jesus Christ would be markedly different to the response I'd give to someone raised in a western culture. And clearly it would be poles removed from how I'd address a former Revivalist such as yourself.

(I would also like to point out that this is in fact the only answer you have given on this entire thread on this discussion... and even this response was a bit like extracting teeth). Go back and review. The response was provided very early in the piece this time around, just as it was several years ago. It's simply that you've refused to accept it :) If so, is there any chance you could persuade.... "Those university-educated professionals with whom I occasionally discuss Christianity and her truth-claims are far more critical and sophisticated in their thinking than you would credit them with being. And my vocational circle is literally jammed full of such people, many of whom have formally studied philosophy"... to attempt an answer to my question because it is obviously beyond your intellectual capacity to do so. D'ya think? My experience of such people has been that they're far brighter, and considerably more open to accepting of sound and logical arguments, than you've demonstrated yourself as being to date ;)

Stultum est sicut stultus facit.

Ian

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:24/09/2012 2:51 PMCopy HTML



 

Ah ha... I think I have uncovered why this discussion seems to be bogged down...

You said... "There was no need to expand on the answer, given that it was simple enough to grasp" :)

... I think you just assume that everybody knows what you are talking about... a common mistake made by intellectual types and by people who have been in the same profession for many years. To you the answer may have been simple but to me I was at a complete loss to understand how it even remotely addressed my question... so yes you do need to have the skill to be able to articulate and expand your answer and communicate it in such a way that people understand... otherwise your answer becomes meaningless

I must confess that your unwillingness to explain your statement led me to believe that you really didn't have a logical or reasonable answer to my question and instead was trying to hide behind a smokescreen of some religious dogma to try and divert the conversation away from what I was asking.

Consequently, the approach that I'd provide to someone who had never heard of Jesus Christ would be markedly different to the response I'd give to someone raised in a western culture.

You see, here again I am confused... I would have thought that the method one would use to determine which scriptures and modern texts were directly inspired by God would by the same whether I was a Christian, Muslim, Hindu or Heathen... why would one use a different method to someone else? Or are you just saying that you would go into more detail on how to apply the method depending on the person? If so, then please consider me as one of those people who needs a little more detail to understand what you are getting at. I did after all make this very clear in my opening question... the answer was to be in such a way that even an unlearned person would be able to easily comprehend it.

The response was provided very early in the piece this time around, just as it was several years ago. It's simply that you've refused to accept it :)

No... its just that I have failed to understand it... big difference... and I do believe it is primarily your responsibility to be able to effectively communicate your answer particularly when I made it very obvious that I couldn't see how your answer bore any relevance to the question at hand, namely... What method should one use to determine exactly which scriptures are of God and which are of the mind of man? Even just a general overview of the method at this stage would be better than none.

My experience of such people has been that they're far brighter, and considerably more open to accepting of sound and logical arguments, than you've demonstrated yourself as being to date ;)

... again, to you your argument may appear to be sound and logical... to me it was like we were discussing totally different topics...

So yes please feel free to elaborate. Also please explain if you would why you find it so difficult to simply complete this sentence......"the way to determine which scriptures and texts are directly of God and which ones are not is to"... (Your answer here...)

Thank you.

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:24/09/2012 9:09 PMCopy HTML

Crying Guy,

Ah ha... I think I have uncovered why this discussion seems to be bogged down... Quite so. It has to do with you altogether lacking the will to grapple with the implications of my response, and you altogether lacking the integrity to be open about what it is that truly motivates you, here :)

... I think you just assume that everybody knows what you are talking about... a common mistake made by intellectual types and by people who have been in the same profession for many years. To you the answer may have been simple but to me I was at a complete loss to understand how it even remotely addressed my question... so yes you do need to have the skill to be able to articulate and expand your answer and communicate it in such a way that people understand... otherwise your answer becomes meaningless ... However, given your particular religious background, the specious claim that my response was somehow meaningless doesn't really apply, does it? Rightly or wrongly, superficially or in detail, you inherited a body of belief and understanding about Christian Scripture. And such speaks to, and necessarily informs, any subsequent understanding.

Consequently, the approach that I'd provide to someone who had never heard of Jesus Christ would be markedly different to the response I'd give to someone raised in a western culture. And clearly it would be poles removed from how I'd address a former Revivalist such as yourself. You see, here again I am confused... I would have thought that the method one would use to determine which scriptures and modern texts were directly inspired by God would by the same whether I was a Christian, Muslim, Hindu or Heathen... why would one use a different method to someone else? The answer is obvious: because such speaks to the twin issues of ignorance and presupposition, and both have to do with the foundational fact of epistemology. Furthermore, how a Christian perceives Scripture is markedly different to how a Muslim perceives the Qu'ran, or how a Hindu understands the Vedas. Consequently, there is no, and cannot be, a one-size-fits-all answer.

Or are you just saying that you would go into more detail on how to apply the method depending on the person? If so, then please consider me as one of those people who needs a little more detail to understand what you are getting at. I did after all make this very clear in my opening question...
Au contraire. Your opening salvo was, as I pointed out at the time, and have pointed out subsequently, clearly disingenuous. The principal difference between you and the rock-worshipping native isn't one of a lack of information, but a lack of commitment. Ergo my approach with you necessarily differs considerably from the approach that I'd follow with him. To begin with, the rock-worshipping native would likely be sincere in his/her questions ... the answer was to be in such a way that even an unlearned person would be able to easily comprehend it. The answer that I've provided you is refreshingly simple. 'Tis only your attitude that makes it difficult.

The response was provided very early in the piece this time around, just as it was several years ago. It's simply that you've refused to accept it :) No... its just that I have failed to understand it... big difference... and I do believe it is primarily your responsibility to be able to effectively communicate your answer particularly when I made it very obvious that I couldn't see how your answer bore any relevance to the question at hand, namely... What method should one use to determine exactly which scriptures are of God and which are of the mind of man? Even just a general overview of the method at this stage would be better than none. Two things. First, the 'big difference' as you've put it isn't that you've failed to comprehend the answer, but that you've refused to entertain it, acknowledge it, grapple with it, or be shaped by it. Consequently yours isn't in any sense a matter of cognition but of will. I doubt that you lack the former, but clearly you do the latter. Next, who says that it's my 'responsibility to effectively communicate' anything about this or any other topic to you? Such might well be your assumption, but I can assure you that it's far from being my reality.

My experience of such people has been that they're far brighter, and considerably more open to accepting of sound and logical arguments, than you've demonstrated yourself as being to date ;) ... again, to you your argument may appear to be sound and logical... to me it was like we were discussing totally different topics... Those possessing of a sincere desire to get to the heart of the matter invariably find discussions such as this one profitable. Not so much for people whose motivations are less noble.

So yes please feel free to elaborate. Also please explain if you would why you find it so difficult to simply complete this sentence......"the way to determine which scriptures and texts are directly of God and which ones are not is to"... (Your answer here...) Surely that is the wrong question? The right question, the one which you need to ask of yourself, is this: 'why do I struggle accepting Ian's answer?'

To conclude, let's be brutally honest for a moment. It's obvious that you've no real interest in learning the answer to the question that you make a fiction of continually asking. For my part, I seriously doubt that you have any real interest in following God in Christ. And given that the only party who seems capable of carrying this 'conversation' is me (given that you continue to maintain that communication isn't taking place), it's unlikely that I'll commit any more of my discretionary time to humoring you :) 

Quis equum ducere aquam non bibant faciunt. Et sed timeo ne forte te mergere.

Ian

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:26/09/2012 11:40 AMCopy HTML

Have you finished editing? :o)


So I see you continue to duck and weave by this time attacking my character and motives.


I have kept you informed all along of my reasons to get to the heart of this matter yet you choose to ignore this and fabricate your own ill informed conclusions to justify your unwillingness to explain your answer... so please allow me to again remind you of my motives...


I have a very deep belief in God and I know I feel his love, guidance and blessing in a personal way on a daily basis. Yes, I know this is very subjective, but for me it is very real and most importantly works for me.


So I feel I understand how God may guide an individual personally but sometime ago I wondered if God also had an overall plan for mankind or if he had ever given us a Spiritual blueprint in written form for all mankind to follow.

Admittedly this seemed most unlikely for many reasons... but the fact remained that many people do indeed claim that texts such as the Bible, the Koran, book of Mormon etc or at least parts of these works are of God himself and more importantly claim they are intended by God for us to follow.


The problem of course is knowing which of these texts are of God and which ones aren't. I am very aware of how easy it is to have a 'personal' experience and then turn it into something that 'God' has decreed the whole tribe must follow.


Because I have a great respect for God I know that if I were to follow a scripture or text claiming it was of Him when in fact it was just someones opinion of what God required then I would be in grave danger of Gods wrath. At the very least I would be a hypocrite, particularly when it is blatantly obvious that many things that are written in Gods name are just from the mind of man thinking that it is from God... and this would have been no different in ancient times if not more so.


It greatly concerns me that your motives Ian seem to be far more about protecting the historical context of the various Biblical texts rather than being open to seeking truth and discussion about the actual validity of the scriptures you protect.


So do I have a motive to seek out truth from fiction?.... you bet I do. Do I have a reason to vigorously challenge you when you make a statement concerning the divinity of Gods word?... absolutely. There is probably no greater blasphemy than that of the person who claims something is of God when it isn't. (not saying you are doing that, but I am still waiting to understand how you went about to determine which texts are of Divine origin) When you say "why do I struggle accepting Ian's answer?"... too right I do, possibly even my eternal life depends on it.


 

======================================= 

You say... "Furthermore, how a Christian perceives Scripture is markedly different to how a Muslim perceives the Qu'ran, or how a Hindu understands the Vedas. Consequently, there is no, and cannot be, a one-size-fits-all answer".


That may be, but the fact remains... initially at least, how anyone perceives Scripture is of no consequence if that Scripture is NOT of God but from the mind of man. It is either from God or it isn't... quite simple really. And importantly if there is any possibility that a scripture may not be of God then it must be immediately discounted so as to err on the side of caution, because to do otherwise would be a great injustice to God. Once that is established then and only then can one move on to how one perceives or follows that text or we are guilty of hypocrisy.

 
I also doubt that you have any real interest in following God in Christ because of your unwillingness to expand on how you know which scripture to be of God and which of man. You seem far more interested in preserving your long held religious beliefs than seeking the truth about Gods will... which can only be done by first applying a credible method of determining which texts are actually from God... all other texts are just someones best guess of what is Gods will and purpose.

Remember, this has nothing to do with anyone trying to win an argument... I was hoping it would be a rational, non religious exchange of information on how to solve a very serious issue.

The fact is, I most certainly would desire to follow God in Christ if that is in fact what God requires us to do and not just some imagined philosophy conjured up by the religious or spiritual mind of man. Having said that, on a personal level I do very much admire the example Jesus set in living an exemplary life and would have no hesitation in learning more about his beliefs and philosophy and how they can be applied to my own life.

 

========================================
You claimed "The answer that I've provided you is refreshingly simple" ...the way to determine which scriptures and texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to... "Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians".

I seriously doubt that anyone who is honest of heart would find your above statement to be a credible attempt to answer my question. I beg you to explain how anyone could possibly use this method to determine which texts of the Bible, Koran, book of Mormon etc are of God and which are of man.

You talk about various ones affirming bodies of scripture... which means absolutely nothing to me if any of the texts being affirmed were from the mind of man and not from God. No matter who, how many or how much people affirm a lie... it is still a lie. (not saying the ancients deliberately lied... but is it possible that much of what was written came from their own understanding and experiences... ie not the express instruction of God himself)


I find it notable that your answer makes no reference to God what so ever but instead refers to the "received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians"... a very different topic indeed to my original question.

You have already expressed your reluctance to continue this conversation but if you do decide to reply I will be away for a few days so enjoy the break :o)

 


 



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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:27/09/2012 12:07 AMCopy HTML

If you cannot accept the simple Christian truth, Jesus suffered, died and rose again for you so that your sins be forgiven and it's through the Grace of God alone, through Christ alone, through Faith alone you have eternal life, then you are most wretched.
All the knowledge, works and learning are based on this very foundation, with out this you will never be convinced no matter what is put to you.
Not Mohammed, not Joseph Smith, not Lloyd Longfield etc., but JESUS is the way.
I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen; not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. C.S.Lewis.
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:27/09/2012 4:25 AMCopy HTML

Crying Guy,

Have you finished editing? I edit for expression. Consequently, when I'm happy the expression is just right, the editing then ceases. Given this forum presents a permanent record of the theological discussions that take place here, I'm of the opinion that what remains 'on the record' should be cogent, coherent and conclusive. So I see you continue to duck and weave by this time attacking my character and motives. To the contrary I've attacked nothing, ducked nothing, and woven nothing. I have questioned your motives; however, and rightly so given your history here.

I have kept you informed all along of my reasons to get to the heart of this matter yet you choose to ignore this and fabricate your own ill informed conclusions to justify your unwillingness to explain your answer ... so please allow me to again remind you of my motives ... I have a very deep belief in God and I know I feel his love, guidance and blessing in a personal way on a daily basis. You spoke of your 'deep belief' in God. Which god? And how did you come to know him/her? Yes, I know this is very subjective, but for me it is very real and most importantly works for me. I'd offer that you're being incredibly inconsistent. On the one hand you quite happily embrace spiritual subjectivism, and all that such implies, when it relates to you. And yet on the other you would demand some sort of Cartesian objectivity regarding the pronouncements of others? Interesting. 

So I feel I understand how God may guide an individual personally but sometime ago I wondered if God also had an overall plan for mankind or if he had ever given us a Spiritual blueprint in written form for all mankind to follow. You feel the former do you, but you also demand to know the latter? Still, we're getting ahead of ourselves a little. Again, which god have you been discussing? If you had in mind the Christian God; the biblical God, then I've previously addressed the issues of 'if' and 'how' with you in some detail. But if you had in mind some other sort of personalised, subjective god; then I'm afraid I'm not going to be of too much help to you. Admittedly this seemed most unlikely for many reasons ... If I may? T'would be much less unlikely than is your claim to the primacy of private, individualised revelation ... but the fact remained that many people do indeed claim that texts such as the Bible, the Koran, book of Mormon etc or at least parts of these works are of God himself and more importantly claim they are intended by God for us to follow. The problem of course is knowing which of these texts are of God and which ones aren't. That would, again, depend on which God is in view. If it's the Christian God, then the matter is very easily resolved, and is done so via the reasoning process that I spelled out for you earlier. I am very aware of how easy it is to have a 'personal' experience and then turn it into something that 'God' has decreed the whole tribe must follow. I do wonder. Have you considered the implications of this statement?

Because I have a great respect for God I know that if I were to follow a scripture or text claiming it was of Him when in fact it was just someones opinion of what God required then I would be in grave danger of Gods wrath. At the very least I would be a hypocrite, particularly when it is blatantly obvious that many things that are written in Gods name are just from the mind of man thinking that it is from God ... So you have an abiding respect for a god about whom you have no objective basis? This leads me to ask the obvious: how do you know that you'd be in 'grave danger of God's wrath'? Second, by what measure have you judged it 'blatantly obvious that many things that are written in Gods name are just from the mind of man thinking that it is from God'? ... and this would have been no different in ancient times if not more so. According to whom? It greatly concerns me that your motives Ian seem to be far more about protecting the historical context of the various Biblical texts rather than being open to seeking truth and discussion about the actual validity of the scriptures you protect. If I may, I'd offer that it likely I have a much greater respect for Christian Scripture than you clearly do. Further, I'd suggest that I probably understand its history, composition and intended and actual uses much better than you do as well. For me Scripture is but a means to an end. Consequently, when you first raised this issue a couple of years ago I very clearly indicated that it is epistemologically naive to begin with the premise of Scripture (i.e. special revelation) in an attempt to posit God (i.e. the Revelator) when logically one must begin with the latter in order to arrive at the former. And this is why I subsequently provided you with the answer that you have apparently rejected because it doesn't suit you, subjectively.

So do I have a motive to seek out truth from fiction?.... you bet I do. And I'm glad to hear it. Do I have a reason to vigorously challenge you when you make a statement concerning the divinity of Gods word?... absolutely. Actually, your challenge is neither 'vigorous' nor 'reasonable'. The fact remains that you've consistently failed to recognise the implications that result from the answers provided to you. What this demonstrates to me is that you're capable of generating considerable 'heat' but precious little 'light' :) There is probably no greater blasphemy than that of the person who claims something is of God when it isn't. Look up the word 'blasphemy', friend. It doesn't mean what you think it does ... (not saying you are doing that, but I am still waiting to understand how you went about to determine which texts are of Divine origin) ... Then re-read this entire thread, but slowly. When you say "why do I struggle accepting Ian's answer?"... too right I do, possibly even my eternal life depends on it. Oh, I agree with you there.

You say... "Furthermore, how a Christian perceives Scripture is markedly different to how a Muslim perceives the Qu'ran, or how a Hindu understands the Vedas. Consequently, there is no, and cannot be, a one-size-fits-all answer". That may be, but the fact remains... initially at least, how anyone perceives Scripture is of no consequence if that Scripture is NOT of God but from the mind of man. It is either from God or it isn't... quite simple really. Which is why I've suggested several times now that you review my earlier comments. And importantly if there is any possibility that a scripture may not be of God then it must be immediately discounted so as to err on the side of caution, because to do otherwise would be a great injustice to God.  Once that is established then and only then can one move on to how one perceives or follows that text or we are guilty of hypocrisy. There is a world of difference between 'possibility', 'probability' and 'certainty'. Something you might like to consider.
 
I also doubt that you have any real interest in following God in Christ because of your unwillingness to expand on how you know which scripture to be of God and which of man. Such being the case, I can only suggest that you haven't much of an inkling as what's required in order to be following God in Christ. You seem far more interested in preserving your long held religious beliefs than seeking the truth about Gods will... which can only be done by first applying a credible method of determining which texts are actually from God... all other texts are just someones best guess of what is Gods will and purpose. If by 'credible' you mean: endorsed by the Source, then I'd happily agree with you. If, however, your sense of credibility isn't derivative from the Unmoved Mover, then I would very strongly disagree with you. Remember, this has nothing to do with anyone trying to win an argument... I was hoping it would be a rational, non religious exchange of information on how to solve a very serious issue. Really? To begin with 'rational' infers logical. Logic tests propositions in order to proffer theories, which are tested again in order to establish facts. I don't know what approach you've been taking, but it certainly doesn't merit the label 'rational'. Second, would you please explain to me how a topic which, by your own admission, is religious to its core, can be addressed via a "non-religious exchange of information"? I'm sorry, but that's what we rational-types describe the term, 'illogical'.

The fact is, I most certainly would desire to follow God in Christ if that is in fact what God requires us to do and not just some imagined philosophy conjured up by the religious or spiritual mind of man. Having said that, on a personal level I do very much admire the example Jesus set in living an exemplary life and would have no hesitation in learning more about his beliefs and philosophy and how they can be applied to my own life. So if I've understoof you rightly, Jesus Christ isn't the God whom you claim to believe in and be subjectively guided by; rather, to you he presents as simply a good example of a fellow who set a good example?

You claimed "The answer that I've provided you is refreshingly simple" ... the way to determine which scriptures and texts are directly of God and which ones aren't is to... "Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians". I seriously doubt that anyone who is honest of heart would find your above statement to be a credible attempt to answer my question. That would entirely depend on whether such a person was seeking an internally consistent, logically valid and defensible point of departure for a conversation about the Christian God, and Christian Scripture. I beg you to explain how anyone could possibly use this method to determine which texts of the Bible, Koran, book of Mormon etc are of God and which are of man. Think about it  ;)

You talk about various ones affirming bodies of scripture... which means absolutely nothing to me if any of the texts being affirmed were from the mind of man and not from God. Let me give you a wee hint in the hope of provoking some reflection on your part: what, or who, is God? No matter who, how many or how much people affirm a lie... it is still a lie. (not saying the ancients deliberately lied... but is it possible that much of what was written came from their own understanding and experiences... ie not the express instruction of God himself). Actually, your entire supposition is based on the inference that a lie has been told. We scholarly types refer to this approach as a 'hermeneutic of suspicion', which is to be distinguished from a 'hermeneutic of trust'. I'd like for you to demonstrate how, and why, the former should be viewed as the correct starting point for our discussion, rather than the latter.

I find it notable that your answer makes no reference to God what so ever but instead refers to the "received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians" ... a very different topic indeed to my original question. I don't know about that. I'm comfortable that I've referenced the primacy of God plenty of times in this conversation. It's simply that you don't understand how the Christian Bible functions in the historic orthodox Church, and that despite the fact that I provided you with the answer several times.

You have already expressed your reluctance to continue this conversation but if you do decide to reply I will be away for a few days so enjoy the break. As you are but a minor side issue in my various ministries to others on this forum your absence, like you presence, troubles me very little. However, unless you start thinking I simply won't continue to devote much more of my time to you.

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:03/12/2012 2:35 AMCopy HTML

Reply to Biblianut

If you cannot accept the simple Christian truth, Jesus suffered, died and rose again for you so that your sins be forgiven and it's through the Grace of God alone, through Christ alone, through Faith alone you have eternal life, then you are most wretched.
All the knowledge, works and learning are based on this very foundation, with out this you will never be convinced no matter what is put to you.
Not Mohammed, not Joseph Smith, not Lloyd Longfield etc., but JESUS is the way.



Thank you for your reply Biblianut... it's good to know that there is someone else other than Ian on this forum prepared to defend the Bible as being the literal word of God of which every letter must be obeyed and accepted as Gods express will and truth


Yes I am well aware that the Christian truth is that Jesus died and rose again to free me of my sins... what I am more importantly trying to determine is if it is also Gods truth, the supreme creator and master of the universe... because if it isn't then obviously I wouldn't be as keen as you to take it on board. In fact, I may as well follow the way of Mo or Jo or Lloyd for all the good it would do me to be right with the true God

No where in your reply do you address my original question of how to determine if this Christian concept you speak of is of God or not... all you say is that I must just accept what you or some book you read says whether I like it or not... which sounds a lot like the RCI method of teaching

If the Christian truth is no more then mans best guess at Gods will for us then apart from a historical curiosity I really have no interest in becoming too dogmatic about it because that means that I am just as capable as they were of determing Gods will and truth for my life... which might vary a bit in places to what they came up with :o)




 

 

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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:03/12/2012 6:45 AMCopy HTML

Well there you have it mate, you have given yourself the answer you have been seeking all along. (SELAH)
I believe in Christianity as I believe the sun has risen; not only because I see it, but because by it I see everything else. C.S.Lewis.
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:04/12/2012 2:47 AMCopy HTML

Crying Guy,

Still at it, I see.

Thank you for your reply Biblianut... it's good to know that there is someone else other than Ian on this forum prepared to defend the Bible as being the literal word of God of which every letter must be obeyed and accepted as Gods express will and truth. Yet again you've misrepresented what I both believe and profess, and that despite the fact that I spelled out my position on the matter at the very beginning of this one-sided discussion. This alone would cause me to question your capacity to understand what you read ;)

I'll restate my position for you, but slowly this time: I read Scripture l-i-t-e-r-a-r-i-l-y not 'literally'.

Given that you seem to be both unwilling and unable to read others' posts authentically, take a wee break from the forum for a while.

Goose.

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:21/12/2012 7:29 AMCopy HTML

Reply to Didaktikon

Crying Guy,

Still at it, I see.

Thank you for your reply Biblianut... it's good to know that there is someone else other than Ian on this forum prepared to defend the Bible as being the literal word of God of which every letter must be obeyed and accepted as Gods express will and truth. Yet again you've misrepresented what I both believe and profess, and that despite the fact that I spelled out my position on the matter at the very beginning of this one-sided discussion. This alone would cause me to question your capacity to understand what you read ;)

I'll restate my position for you, but slowly this time: I read Scripture l-i-t-e-r-a-r-i-l-y not 'literally'.

Given that you seem to be both unwilling and unable to read others' posts authentically, take a wee break from the forum for a while.

Goose.

Ian


 

Hi Ian,

Firstly, I sincerely apologise for not understanding your initial replies. I truly did believe from your answers that you were of the opinion that the entire Bible was the literal word of God given to mankind by divine inspiration which must be obeyed… as opposed to the Bible (or parts of it) just being man’s opinion of Gods will for us (and therefore does not particularly have to be obeyed from a Divine point of view).

 

I know you chastise me for not understanding your responses but right from the start I have pleaded with you to keep your answers simple and where ever possible to expand on your thoughts so that an uneducated person as myself may understand them.

 

I don’t think you would stoop so low to ban a fellow poster just because they don’t see eye to eye with your views but I do find it very disappointing that you would ban someone from the forum simply because they were unable to comprehend your responses… and particularly because I have always been courteous and not once have I been abusive, deliberately contentious or resorted to name calling as indeed you have. Furthermore my postings on this topic have not been so prolific to necessitate a break because, apart from my reply to Ralph, my previous ones were way back in September and before that May.

 

I also cannot fathom why you choose not to elaborate on your answers, use layman’s language or to clearly explain in detail your responses because it makes it extremely difficult for someone like myself to even begin to understand your position. As a result I am accused of misrepresenting what you both believe and profess.

 

For example, I have no idea what you mean by or the implications of… I read Scripture l-i-t-e-r-a-r-i-l-y not 'literally'… again you give no explanation what you mean by this or how you apply it and I don’t dare guess for fear of being kicked off the forum again.

 

I am fairly sure though, judging by your last response, that you are certainly NOT claiming…

1) “The entire bible is the literal word of God given to mankind by divine inspiration and therefore must be obeyed to the letter”.

However I am still not clear whether this then means;

2) “Only some parts of the Bible were directly given to man by God” so therefore some of it must be obeyed and some of it can be ignored… or you are implying that…

3) “None of the Bible is the actual Divine word of God… ie It is all of man’s thoughts and inspiration” so therefore it is up to the individual’s discretion to decide whether they should base their religion and spiritual beliefs on what is essentially just another man’s thinking.

While you have now made it very clear that you do not “profess or believe” the number 1 scenario I originally ‘accused’ you of, I dare not again attempt to guess which of the other two outcomes you support or if indeed there is a fourth scenario that I am unaware of that you subscribe to.

 

You said  I spelled out my position on the matter at the very beginning of this one-sided discussion”. Well I will go back to the answer you originally gave to help me determine which of the above possible outcomes you support. It was;

The way to determine which parts of the Bible are from God and which are not is to… Jesus Christ affirmed the Old Testament. He also affirmed the apostles. The apostles affirmed the New Testament, and the Christian Church (i.e. Christ's Body) has affirmed both. This heirarchy represents the received understanding of the place the Bible's authority has over Christians”.

You also went on to say that this answer explained it “Clearly. Succinctly. Fully.and I really don't know how I could be any clearer”.

Do you think you may have been clearer if you actually explained to me how the people you refer to here affirmed the scriptures and more importantly why and how this meant they were following the express will and purpose of the true and living God or not? If the solution to my original question really does lie in your answer then surely it is worthy for you to expand on your idea and give it proper explanation.

Perhaps you could give me a practical example of how you would apply the above ‘affirming’ method to a random scripture to determine if it is directly of God or simply of man.

 

You see, from this, I honestly thought you were saying that ALL the Bible is the literal word of God given to mankind by divine inspiration which must be obeyed… but now that I look at it again closely it seems you are hinting that you in fact support the number 3 scenario above…it is indeed of man and that the Christian believers simply just use the Bible as their authority or rule book so to speak to try and understand and worship ‘God’ and as a guide on how to conduct their affairs and way of life.

However other things you write would seem to contradict this thought and suggest that you really do believe the Bible is actually or literally God’s word given to man, so I really don’t know where you stand on this and it has left me totally confused.

 

Rather than leaving it up to me to try and guess what you mean and risk getting it all wrong again perhaps you could also clearly indicate to me in very simple terms which of the above scenarios (1, 2 or 3) you actually “profess” to be true… because I do not deliberately intend or want to “misrepresent” you again.

 

When it comes to this matter my world is very black and white. Either the Bible literally is of God or it isn’t… so what is it? If my thinking is wrong here then please explain. I really don’t know what other options could possibly exist…and if just parts of the Bible are his word then I want to know exactly which parts and more importantly how I may determine for myself which parts they are so that I may have total confidence that what I am following is indeed the will of the all mighty true and living God, creator of all things and not just the notion of man.

 

Peace


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Re:Which parts of the Bible are the Word of God???

Date Posted:21/12/2012 10:15 AMCopy HTML

Crying Guy,

Save your breath to cool your porridge.

Ciao.

Ian
email: didaktikon@gmail.com
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