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Religion
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Title: Orthodox Problems with Penal Substitution
Source: Preachers Institute
URL Source: https://preachersinstitute.com/2011 ... blems-with-penal-substitution/
Published: Jun 2, 2011
Author: Alexander Renault
Post Date: 2018-05-27 19:35:05 by A Pole
Keywords: Church, salvation, Christ
Views: 1620
Comments: 46

From book “Reconsidering Tulip”

The penal substitution view was completely absent from the church for over 1,000 years. It was only in the 11th century that Anselm of Canterbury began to introduce the groundwork for this kind of theology to the West. Nor was it fully developed into the doctrine we now know as penal substitution until the 16th-century Reformers came along. To this day it has never been accepted in the east (nor has it ever been fully accepted by the Roman Catholics).

1. Penal substitution compromises the deity of Christ and puts a rift in the Trinity

If Christ died for, and is our solution to, our sins against god the Father, then what about our sins against Christ? He’s just as god as the Father is. or our sins against the Holy Spirit? With penal substitution, God is pitted against God, either dividing God (and thus destroying the Trinity) or saying that Christ isn’t fully god.

2. With penal substitution, God is bound by necessity

If god’s justice demands that He punish sin, then there is a higher force than God—necessity—which determines what God can and cannot do. Calvinists will be quick to argue,

“No, justice is an aspect of God’s nature. There is no necessity laid on Him from outside His nature.”

The problem, though, is that if I do “A” then God must do “B.” If I sin, God must punish. He does not have the freedom to do otherwise. Thus God’s actions are bound and controlled by some- thing outside of Himself, i.e. my actions. This becomes even more confusing if we add in the Calvinistic notion that God foreordained my sinful actions in the first place, thus forcing Him to respond to them. Furthermore, it is often argued by the Reformed that God is sovereign and doesn’t have to save anyone if He chooses not to. On the other hand, He does have to punish sin. So God has to punish sin, but He doesn’t have to save sinners. It’s very interesting that justice (or at least what the Reformed see as justice) becomes the defining characteristic of God rather than love. Justice forces God to respond to our actions, but love does not.

3. Penal substitution misunderstands the Old Testament sacrifices

The Old Testament sacrificial system was not a picture of penal substitution. God was not pouring out His wrath on the animals in place of the Israelites. He didn’t vent His righteous judgment on the animals, sending them to hell in place of the Israelites. On the contrary, they were killed honorably and as painlessly as possible. Their life (i.e. their blood) was offered to God as a sweet smelling aroma. The resulting meat was good and holy—not just worthless carrion fit for dogs and vultures. Such is also the case with Christ’s sacrifice: it is a holy offering of blood to the Father, not a means whereby God can vent His wrath.

4. Penal substitution misunderstands the word “justice”

A quick perusal of the psalms and prophets will reveal that the word “justice” is usually coupled with “mercy.” Justice really means to show kindness and deliverance to the oppressed, and to right the wrongs done to them. True justice is destroying our oppressors—sin, death, and Satan—not punishing us for the sins to which we are in bondage.

5. Penal substitution misunderstands the word “propitiation”

Propitiation should not be thought of in the classical pagan sense, as if our god were some angry deity who needed appeasing and could only be satisfied through a penal sacrifice. It’s really quite different. Propitiation (Greek hilasterion) is also translated “mercy seat.” The mercy seat covered the ark of the covenant, which contained a copy of the ten commandments—the law. While the law cried out against us and demanded perfection and showed us our shortcomings, the mercy seat covered those demands and our failure to live up to them. Was the mercy seat punished for our sins? of course not. Likewise, Christ’s blood was not the punishment demanded by justice, but rather the ultimate mercy seat, covering and forgiving our sins. This is why “propitiation” is sometimes more accurately translated as “expiation” in some versions of the Bible. (“expiation” implies the removal of our sins, while “propitiation” implies appeasing an angry deity.)

6. With penal substitution, God does not show unconditional love

With penal substitution, god Himself does not show the unconditional love that He commands us to show one another. There is a big condition attached: god must have an “outlet” to vent His wrath. His “self-giving” love is only made possible by His “self- satisfying” justice.

7. With penal substitution, God does not truly forgive

With penal substitution, the debt is not really forgiven; it’s just transferred. But we are commanded to forgive as God forgave us. If my brother offends me, should I demand justice and vent my wrath on someone else? Should I beat myself up? No, obviously we are to simply let it go and graciously accept the offense.

8. With penal substitution, God changes

According to penal substitution, God is angry with us because of our sins. But once He expresses His wrath in His Son, He is no longer angry with us. Now He loves us as He loves His own Son. In other words, He changes. First He’s angry with us, then He changes His mind and decides to love us. But how can this be if God is love? How can a God who is infinite, self-giving love ever vary in His degree of love towards us? Besides, not only is God love (1 Jn 4:8, 16), but He’s also unchanging (Mal 3:6) and doesn’t change His mind (Num 23:19).

9. Penal substitution makes the resurrection unnecessary

According to penal substitution, salvation is made possible only by a legal exchange. We are counted “just” and “forgiven” only because god’s wrath has been poured out on Christ instead. Since hell is said to be a punishment for sins, and since our sins have already been punished in Christ, we are free to go to heaven. The resurrection then becomes simply a nice bonus, nothing more than a “proof” that Christ is divine.

10. Penal substitution makes the incarnation unnecessary

Was it Christ’s physical suffering or spiritual suffering which atoned for our sins (according to penal substitution)? If physical, then anyone who has suffered physically more than Christ (and there have been plenty in the history of our race), is exempt from hell, since they already paid for their own sins. If it was Christ’s spiritual suffering that counts, then He didn’t need to be incarnate. (After all, the demons will be punished without needing bodies.) The incarnation becomes just an “add-on” to help us out a little more.

11. One person cannot be punished for another

Contra penal substitution, the Bible tells us that one person can- not be punished for another. each one shall die for his own sins:

In those days they shall say no more:

“The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.”

But every one shall die for his own iniquity. (Jer 31:29-30) Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor shall children be put to death for their fathers; a person shall be put to death for his own sin. (Deut 24:16) The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself. (Ezek 18:20)

12. Penal substitution makes death a punishment rather than a result

God said,

“In the day you eat the fruit, you will surely die” (Gen 2:17).

He did not say “I will kill you” but rather “you will die.” To walk away from God (i.e. to sin) is by definition, death. death is the realm of “Not God.” likewise, if I pull the plug on my own life support system, the result is death. No one else is killing me. If I jump off the roof, after being warned by my mother not to, and I end up breaking my leg, does that mean that my mother broke my leg? No, that was simply the result of my own choice. Christ gave Himself up to death. If death is an active punishment from God, then Christ was punished by His Father (per penal substitution). But if death is the result of sin, then it is an outside enemy, and not God’s own wrath.

13. Penal substitution undermines union with Christ

If death is a punishment for sin rather than a result of sin (continuing with the last point), then it makes little sense to speak of being united with Christ. St. Paul says that we were united together in the likeness of His death (Rom 6:5). He also says

“I have been crucified with Christ” (Gal 2:20).

If death is a punishment, then St. Paul is saying

“Christ and I have been punished together.”

But again, why would two people be punished for one person’s sins? Perhaps it makes more sense to say that Christ, in union with our humanity, experienced the consequence of death, and through His death, defeated death for all of us. Besides, if we really believe that Christ defeated death, then we certainly can’t say that death is a punishment sent from god, or else we’d be forced to say that Christ defeated something that god willed for us. But Christ and His Father are not at war with each other. on the other hand, I will certainly confess that there is a substitution as well. Christ experienced the consequence of sin (i.e. death), as a substitute for us, so that we don’t have to experience the ultimate consequence sin (i.e. eternal death). But note that Christ is taking on the consequence of sin in our place, rather than the punishment for sin in our place. 14. Penal substitution was absent from the entire Church (both east and west) for at least 1,000 years

To quote from the Theogeek blogsite,

“If the apostles taught penal substitution as a central part of their gospel, then it seems almost entirely inconceivable that the generations that came after them and spoke the same language had, worldwide, managed to universally forget the major and central part of the gospel and replace it with something else entirely.”

So what was Christ’s death for, if not to satisfy God’s justice? The purpose of Christ’s atonement was to defeat death and forgive us of our sins. It was the presenting of Christ’s blood, His humanity, to the Father to restore the unity that we had broken. It was a sweet-smelling aroma, a sacrifice acceptable to God.

The depth and purpose of His sacrifice is far beyond the scope of this little book, but one thing is for sure: it was not about punishment. And when punishment is taken out of the equation, things look much different. We can no longer say that Christ was punished in place of John but not in place of, say, Judas. But we can say that Christ defeated death for both John and Judas, both of whom will be resurrected regardless of their acceptance or rejection of Christ…

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#1. To: A Pole (#0)

My current thinking on the subject is that the doctrine of sin is, theologically speaking, "messy". Not because of the atonement part, but because of what constitutes "sin" in the first place. One's intent must be a factor in wrong doing, and yet one's intent is clearly not easily defined or discernable.

Though in defense of Christian doctrine, on the #1 point, I would say that yes, Christ's sacrifice on the cross certainly did pit "God against God", and yes, did destroy the trinity, but only for a time. While on the cross, Jesus was quoted as asking "why hast thou forsaken me?" which it seems to me to have not been intended to show his desperation out of physical pain, but rather, illustrating what was happening spiritually, that he was indeed, at that moment, forsaken by God out of necessity, by reason of being covered with sin. It was required that he be forsaken.

That again, according to Christian doctrine which I generally no longer subscribe to. (Though yet, the story of his sacrifice has love as it's moral, and love is very much real).

#2) I find is a very logically sound argument and one I've taken up myself. I've expressed it as: Did or did not God have a choice in how spiritual laws were written that determine the fate of mankind? Seems to me he must have, in which case, why would he have settled upon a set of laws that see most of his children end up in a sea of fire and brimestone for all eternity? To me, that is illogical. (And the "Newton model" as I term it, is arguably far superior to the Christian model in this regard).

#7) That's funny! To forgive someone who wronged me, I must first go find some totally innocent person and beat them up.

#8) I couldn't agree more. I've argued many times that anger is a result of weakness, primarily insecurity. If a co-worker flies off the handle one day, the Christian reaction is to start praying for him, which is a commendable response. But do we pray for God if God becomes angry? I cannot understand how any deity who is all powerful, all loving, all patient and all wise ever becoming angry. Anger is indeed the result of weakness, in every case. So I cannot agree that God have ever been angry. It makes no sense at all.

Pinguinite  posted on  2018-05-28   3:49:31 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#2. To: Pinguinite (#1) (Edited)

Corrected below.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-28   6:12:27 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#3. To: Pinguinite, redleghunter, sneakypete, Vicomte13, Vicomte13, Tooconservative, Deckard, Justified (#1)

What you wrote rings a pleasant bell :) And it clarified an image that was at the tip of my tongue for a long time.

Imagine a place where there is a delicate dim light, occupied by many people, who are embittered, confused and quarreling with each other, full of suffering and anger.

At some moment a visitor comes - calm, meek and compassionate. He starts to sooth those around, by compassionate and kind words and by his friendly presence.

People get attracted to him, some clinging like neglected and abandoned children (1), others hoping that he might have power to help them to defeat their enemies (2), some who have had longing to establish a semblance of moral order by a set of enforced regulations given them in the remore past in mysterious circumstances (3). The fourth group is full of pain, despair and corrution that can only hurt others and themselves. The fifth proud and talended try to rule over their world and find comfort in selfishness, see in him a threat to their hardly won position.

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

The newcomer said:

"Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart; and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light."

"I tell you: do not take revenge on someone who wrongs you. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek, let him slap your left cheek too. And if someone takes you to court to sue you for your shirt, let him have your coat as well. ... love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you"

"My kingdom is not of this world; if it were, My servants would fight [for me]" ... about food, drink and clothes - "your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well"

At certain moment the wicked crowd decides to mistreat and kill this teacher, what they did. He submitted meekly without trying to fight back.

His new friends and students became terrified and dejected. Yet their teacher rose from the death and appeared again showing them his wounds, urging them to persevere after he leaves their world and promising them to send them the power that will comfort and guide them further.

Centuries later in far away lands, brave rugged and warlike tribes translated this message into story of crime and retribution paid by a generous stranger, accordingly to their savage mindset.

My current thinking on the subject is that the doctrine of sin is, theologically speaking, "messy".

"Sin" in the original Greek is "missing the mark" (the literal meaning of the Greek word for sin, "hamartia"), "falling short", "erring", or the Hebrew word "hata", which means "to miss the mark" and "flawed".

Through the fall of our ancestors in Paradise, the instrument of our souls went out of tune and body got soiled. Christ came to do the tuning and purification.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-28   6:14:48 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#4. To: A Pole (#0)

Thanks for the ping,but I don't have a dog in this fight.

In the entire history of the world,the only nations that had to build walls to keep their own citizens from leaving were those with leftist governments.

sneakypete  posted on  2018-05-28   6:27:21 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#5. To: A Pole (#0)

To me, honestly, the entire subject is very much akin to the question "How many angels can dance on the head of a pin."

I know what I think about it, when forced to think about it. I also know, from long experience, that attempting to express what I think about the subject merely invites people to be personally nasty to me, when then causes me to become very sour and vicious in my own thinking. What good does that do me? None.

I simply don't think the question is important. Why? Because whatever one believes about what Christ "did", exactly, is irrelevant to me. What is important, in my estimation, is what Christ to us to DO (not what others have told us to THINK). All of this penal substitution, or not, stuff, falls into the category of what people are telling me to THINK, and I think it is little more than mental masturbation, in public, provocative of anger and hatred.

What I think is important is taking care of other people and forgiving them their sins, as I would like to be forgiven. And everything else, I think, is not very important.

And in truth, the MORE important a mental masturbator insists something is, the less and less importance I give to it, because I'm very sure that my way of approaching Christ is the right one, and is the thing we should be doing FIRST. So, if somebody is doing something other than that, I think he is behaving suboptimally. And if somebody starts beating his chest like a gorilla and yelling that, No!, what HE thinks about God is more important than what I think about him - well, then he has lost any ability to persuade me, I think he is simply a bellowing monkey, I disregard every single thing he has to say after that, and become certain that, whatever he thinks about theology, MUST be ignorant and inferior to what I already know, because I am not beating my chest like a gorilla and insisting on its importance.

In other words, I don't INITIATE conflict, but when dragged into it, the very fat I have been dragged into it leaves me highly morally certain that I am right, and with God, and whoever has dragged me into the fight is an immoral ape who is much farther from God than me.

This is a very STRONG prejudice of my mind. I don't really LISTEN to religious arguments, because once it has reached the threshold of an ARGUMENT, I'm already ignoring my interlocutor, because he is self-evidently an ignoramus, because he is ARGUING with me about religion.

In truth, when it comes to this penal substitution business, I think that Jesus said one thing, and Paul said something else, and that therefore Paul is wrong, because Jesus is God. End of analysis, for me.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-28   9:22:20 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#6. To: Vicomte13 (#5)

... I'm very sure that my way of approaching Christ is the right one, and is the thing we should be doing FIRST. ... And if somebody starts beating his chest like a gorilla and yelling that, No!, what HE thinks about God is more important than what I think about him - well, then he has lost any ability to persuade me, I think he is simply a bellowing monkey ... whatever he thinks about theology, MUST be ignorant and inferior to what I already know ...

... it leaves me highly morally certain that I am right, and with God, and whoever has dragged me into the fight is an immoral ape who is much farther from God than me.

... I'm already ignoring my interlocutor, because he is self-evidently an ignoramus, because he is ARGUING with me about religion.

In truth, when it comes to this penal substitution business, I think that Jesus said one thing, and Paul said something else, and that therefore Paul is wrong, because Jesus is God. ...

You made yourself very clear.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-28   10:04:42 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#7. To: A Pole (#6)

Yes: the Orthodox are correct to have problems with penal substitution. Jesus said forgive to be forgiven, not do what you want and my death has you covered.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-28   10:35:33 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#8. To: Vicomte13 (#7) (Edited)

The painting below contains subtle details that might relate to the topics that interest you :) Crowning of Christ with thorns, by a student of Bosch.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-28   11:24:55 ET  (1 image) Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#9. To: A Pole (#8)

I don't know who those ugly faces are.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-29   8:30:09 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#10. To: Vicomte13 (#9) (Edited)

I don't know who those ugly faces are.

It is a puzzle.

Hints and allusions are in details, like guy behind Jesus has two headed black eagle sign. They refer to the artist's time but have more general meaning too.

This artist might have had similar worldview to yours.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-29   9:15:58 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#11. To: A Pole (#10)

Ok, so, is the guy in red with the weird hat and the scepter-thingy supposed to be the Pope?

I guess the double-eagle guy is supposed to be the Tsar, or something. Let's see who else is in the picture.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-29   9:56:20 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#12. To: A Pole (#0)

The penal substitution view was completely absent from the church for over 1,000 years. It was only in the 11th century that Anselm of Canterbury began to introduce the groundwork for this kind of theology to the West. Nor was it fully developed into the doctrine we now know as penal substitution until the 16th-century Reformers came along. To this day it has never been accepted in the east (nor has it ever been fully accepted by the Roman Catholics).

Considering the above is quite false, I will consider whether or not to respond to the invective of the remaining.

As I pointed out Ransom theory is correct but not the complete picture. Jesus died a terrible death for a reason. He loved us so we would not take the just punishment we deserve.

I'm not going to quote a Reformer at all. Frankly, I never have in these discussions. I will merely take your own venerated Early Church fathers and show you (as I did on the other thread), they taught Jesus Christ satisfied the penalty of sin which is death. The Reformers may have put a title on it, dressed it up and wiped its nose, but the teaching was not something 'new' as many would like to assert.

For those who did not see our conversation, here are the quotes again with links to source material to ensure no one believes they are being deceived with an out of context quote from some apologetics site.

Eusebius of Caesarea

And Aquila is in exact agreement with Symmachus. With regard first to the words which are apparently said in the Person of our Saviour: "Heal my soul, for I have sinned against thee," you will notice in Symmachus they are not so rendered, but thus: "Heal my soul, even if I have sinned against thee." And He speaks thus, since He shares our sins. So it is said: "And the Lord hath laid on him our iniquities, and he bears our sins." Thus the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sins of the world, (467) became a curse on our behalf:

"Whom, though he knew no sin, God made sin for our sake, giving him as redemption for all, that we might become the righteousness of God in him."

[...]

But since being in the likeness of sinful flesh He condemned sin in the flesh, the words quoted are rightly used. And in that He made our sins His own from His love and benevolence towards us, He says these words, adding further on in the same Psalm: "Thou hast (b) protected me because of my innocence," clearly shewing the impeccability of the Lamb of God. And how can He make our sins His own, and be said to bear our iniquities, except by our being regarded as His body, according to the apostle, who says: "Now ye are the body of Christ, and severally members?" And by the rule that "if one member suffer all the members suffer with it," so when the many members suffer and sin, He too by the laws of (c) sympathy (since the Word of God was pleased to take the form of a slave and to be knit into the common tabernacle of us all) takes into Himself the labours of the suffering members, and makes our sicknesses His, and suffers all our woes and labours by the laws of love. And the Lamb of God not only did this, but was chastised on our behalf, (d) and suffered a penalty He did not owe, but which we owed because of the multitude of our sins; and so He became the cause of the forgiveness of our sins, because He received death for us, and transferred to Himself the scourging, the insults, and the dishonour, which were due to us, and drew down on Himself the apportioned curse, being made a curse for us. And what is that but the price of our |196 souls? And so the oracle says in our person: "By his stripes we were healed," and "The Lord delivered him for our sins," with the result that uniting Himself to us and us to Himself, and appropriating our sufferings, He can say, "I said, Lord, have mercy on me, heal my soul, (468) for I have sinned against thee," and can cry that they who plot against Him, not men only but invisible daemons as well, when they see the surpassing power of His Holy Name and title, by means of which He filled the world full of Christians a little after, think that they will be able to extinguish it, if they plot His death. This is what is proved by His saying: "My enemies have spoken evil of me, saying, When shall he die and his name perish?"

- Eusebius of Caesarea, Demonstratio Evangelica, X.1

Eusebius of Caesarea: Demonstratio Evangelica. Tr. W.J. Ferrar (1920) -- Book 10 Eusebius of Caesarea, Demonstratio Evangelica, X.1

Chrysostom, Homily on Galatians 3:3 (ACD, vol. 3, p. 108)

The people were liable to punishment since they had not fulfilled the whole Law. Christ satisfied a different curse, the one that says, “Cursed is everyone that is hanged on a tree.” Both the one who is hanged and the one who transgresses the Law are accursed. Christ, who was going to lift that curse, could not properly be made liable to it, yet he had to receive a curse. He received the curse instead of being liable to it, and through this he lifted the curse. Just as, when someone is condemned to death, another innocent person who chooses to die for him releases him from that punishment, so Christ also did.

In reality, the people were subject to another curse, which says, Cursed is every one that continues not in the things that are written in the book of the Law. Deuteronomy 27:26 To this curse, I say, people were subject, for no man had continued in, or was a keeper of, the whole Law; but Christ exchanged this curse for the other, Cursed is every one that hangs on a tree. As then both he who hanged on a tree, and he who transgresses the Law, is cursed, and as it was necessary for him who is about to relieve from a curse himself to be free from it, but to receive another instead of it, therefore Christ took upon Him such another, and thereby relieved us from the curse. It was like an innocent man's undertaking to die for another sentenced to death, and so rescuing him from punishment. For Christ took upon Him not the curse of transgression, but the other curse, in order to remove that of others. For, He had done no violence neither was any deceit in His mouth. Isaiah 53:9;1 Peter 2:22 And as by dying He rescued from death those who were dying, so by taking upon Himself the curse, He delivered them from it. CHURCH FATHERS: Homily 3 on Galatians (Chrysostom) Chrysostom Homily 3 on Galatians

Augustine

“This, the catholic faith has known of the one and only mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus, who condescended to undergo death—that is, the penalty of sin—without sin, for us. As He alone became the Son of man, in order that we might become through Him sons of God, so He alone, on our behalf, undertook punishment without ill deservings, that we through Him might obtain grace without good deservings. Because as to us nothing good was due so to Him nothing bad was due. Therefore, commending His love to them to whom He was about to give undeserved life, He was willing to suffer for them an undeserved death.”(Against Two Letters of the Pelagians, Book 4, chap. 7)

CHURCH FATHERS: Against Two Letters of the Pelagians, Book IV (Augustine)

Against Two Letters of the Pelagians, Book IV Augustine

Hilary of Poitiers

“He blotted out through death the sentence of death, that by a new creation of our race in Himself He might sweep away the penalty appointed by the former Law. He let them nail Him to the cross that He might nail to the curse of the cross and abolish all the curses to which the world is condemned.” He suffered as man to the utmost that He might put powers to shame. For Scripture had foretold that He Who is God should die; that the victory and triumph of them that trust in Him lay in the fact that He, Who is immortal and cannot be overcome by death, was to die that mortals might gain eternity.

CHURCH FATHERS: On the Trinity, Book I (Hilary of Poitiers)

On the Trinity, Book I Hilary of Poitiers

Cyril of Jerusalem

If Phinees, when he waxed zealous and slew the evil-doer, staved the wrath of God, shall not Jesus, who slew not another, but gave up Himself for a ransom, put away the wrath which is against mankind?…Further; if the lamb under Moses drove the destroyer far away, did not much rather the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world, deliver us from our sins? The blood of a silly sheep gave salvation; and shall not the Blood of the Only-begotten much rather save?…Jesus then really suffered for all men; for the Cross was no illusion, otherwise our redemption is an illusion also…These things the Saviour endured, and made peace through the Blood of His Cross, for things in heaven, and things in earth. For we were enemies of God through sin, and God had appointed the sinner to die. There must needs therefore have happened one of two things; either that God, in His truth, should destroy all men, or that in His loving-kindness He should cancel the sentence. But behold the wisdom of God; He preserved both the truth of His sentence, and the exercise of His loving-kindness. Christ took our sins in His body on the tree, that we by His death might die to sin, and live unto righteousness.--St. Cyril of Jerusalem, Catechetical Lectures, XIII

CHURCH FATHERS: Catechetical Lecture 13 (Cyril of Jerusalem) Catechetical Lecture 13 Cyril of Jerusalem

And our previous conversation:

This above is post modern atheistic "optics." Show it.

No problem. The atheistic rant is God is a big "meanie." To soften the Holy God of the Bible and His wrath against sin, some Christians are trying to 'soften' the image of God to appease a post-modern sensitive society.

You quote:

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” Complete non sequitur.

Absolutely not. It is a fact. When we try to encapsulate God in man's understanding according to man's ways error will occur.

As I mentioned the Ransom theory is solid. It is just incomplete. I quoted the fathers who quoted and commented on the pertinent Holy Scriptures. They teach Jesus satisfied the Father's wrath by suffering and dying for us.

BTW Anselm and Calvin thoughts are all too human, taken from Germanic tribal law, payment of wergild. Anselm was more about satisfying honor than satisfying the wrath of God against law breakers.

Isaiah 53: NASB

1Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

2For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of parched ground; He has no stately form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.

3He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; And like one from whom men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

4Surely our griefs He Himself bore, And our sorrows He carried; Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken, Smitten of God, and afflicted.

5But He was pierced through for our transgressions, He was crushed for our iniquities; The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him, And by His scourging we are healed.

6All of us like sheep have gone astray, Each of us has turned to his own way; But the LORD has caused the iniquity of us all To fall on Him.

7He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth.

8By oppression and judgment He was taken away; And as for His generation, who considered That He was cut off out of the land of the living For the transgression of my people, to whom the stroke was due?

9His grave was assigned with wicked men, Yet He was with a rich man in His death, Because He had done no violence, Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

10But the LORD was pleased To crush Him, putting Him to grief; If He would render Himself as a guilt offering, He will see His offspring, He will prolong His days, And the good pleasure of the LORD will prosper in His hand.

11As a result of the anguish of His soul, He will see it and be satisfied; By His knowledge the Righteous One, My Servant, will justify the many, As He will bear their iniquities.

12Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great, And He will divide the booty with the strong; Because He poured out Himself to death, And was numbered with the transgressors; Yet He Himself bore the sin of many, And interceded for the transgressors.

I think it is all too clear why the early fathers I quoted taught what they did. That Jesus Christ satisfied the wrath of God against sin.

Colossians 2: NASB

8See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ. 9For in Him all the fullness of Deity dwells in bodily form, 10and in Him you have been made complete, and He is the head over all rule and authority; 11and in Him you were also circumcised with a circumcision made without hands, in the removal of the body of the flesh by the circumcision of Christ; 12having been buried with Him in baptism, in which you were also raised up with Him through faith in the working of God, who raised Him from the dead.

13When you were dead in your transgressions and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He made you alive together with Him, having forgiven us all our transgressions, 14having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross. 15When He had disarmed the rulers and authorities, He made a public display of them, having triumphed over them through Him.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-29   13:00:22 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#13. To: Vicomte13 (#9)

I don't know who those ugly faces are.

I think one is a larger version of Dobby the house elf.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-29   13:01:24 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#14. To: A Pole (#0)

1. Penal substitution compromises the deity of Christ and puts a rift in the Trinity If Christ died for, and is our solution to, our sins against god the Father, then what about our sins against Christ? He’s just as god as the Father is. or our sins against the Holy Spirit? With penal substitution, God is pitted against God, either dividing God (and thus destroying the Trinity) or saying that Christ isn’t fully god.

This is a terrible assertion and I'm surprised you as an orthodox would peddle it. It's total nonsense as what the author is suggesting is that the Ransom theory would have issues as well.

The dude who wrote this has absolutely no understanding of the Incarnation and seems to be devoid of any knowledge of Colossians 2:9.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-29   13:04:28 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#15. To: A Pole (#3)

Through the fall of our ancestors in Paradise, the instrument of our souls went out of tune and body got soiled. Christ came to do the tuning and purification.

How was that "tuning and purification" accomplished?

I rest my case.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-29   15:03:24 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#16. To: (#12)

Look, there is an ocean of Church writings (big part of them untranslated) before the Great Schism, you can find fragments to fit into almost any position, especially if you treat metaphors literally and literally-meant passages as metaphors and take them out of the context. (Putting aside the fact that living Faith rarely comes from the reading.)

Even canonized Books of the Holy Scriptures did not prevent Bible believing Protestants to branch into several sects.

But as our Lord said: "My sheep recognize my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."

I do not hear God in the doctrine of Penal Substitution, no more than in Papal Infallibility or Primacy of St Peter.

I do not believe in such Gods, no more that I would believe in God that orders routine human sacrifices.

Divine Justice and loving-kindness are one thing. Mind you, it does not mean that there is no eternal salvation and condemnation, but that they are based on the fundamental choice of the free and sovereign human heart and that God will provide His indispensable help on your way.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-30   4:21:34 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#17. To: redleghunter, Vicomte13 (#15)

How was that "tuning and purification" accomplished?

Not through the payment of wergild of infinite value. Although for the Germanic barbarian minds it might the closest accessible metaphor.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-30   4:32:09 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#18. To: redleghunter, A Pole (#15)

I'm not convinced by either position.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-30   9:07:13 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#19. To: A Pole (#16)

Look, there is an ocean of Church writings (big part of them untranslated) before the Great Schism, you can find fragments to fit into almost any position, especially if you treat metaphors literally and literally-meant passages as metaphors and take them out of the context. (Putting aside the fact that living Faith rarely comes from the reading.)

I quoted respected church fathers some of them doctors of the church. I guess we can torpedo the notion of the 'ancient way' then if you won't accept even your most venerated church doctors.

Also, can you point out the metaphors? What I quoted was clear exegesis from church fathers even quoting the Scriptures.

If you want to discuss 'living faith' then let's do so. We are speaking of theology here. If you don't want to engage in theology that's fine.

Even canonized Books of the Holy Scriptures did not prevent Bible believing Protestants to branch into several sects.

A red herring. I could easily point out the first "protestants" were the Eastern Orthodox splitting from their Supreme Pontiff in Rome. See how that works.

But as our Lord said: "My sheep recognize my voice, and I know them, and they follow me."

Are you leaning towards Calvinism now? I hope you realize the Shepherd and Sheep discourse is at the heart of Monergism.

I do not hear God in the doctrine of Penal Substitution, no more than in Papal Infallibility or Primacy of St Peter. Then explain why Jesus Christ suffered a horrible death. Why did he have to do it? Why was it the Father's will Jesus suffer and die for our sins? If Jesus leading a perfect life was all that was needed, then the cross was not necessary. What greater love is there than for someone to lay down their lives for their friends?

I do not believe in such Gods, no more that I would believe in God that orders routine human sacrifices. Was Jesus a sacrifice for our sins or not? You are actually starting to sound like Marcion who denied the YHWH of the OT was the same God of the NT who sent Jesus to earth:

Marcion believed Jesus was the savior sent by God, and Paul the Apostle was his chief apostle, but he rejected the Hebrew Bible and the God of Israel. Marcionists believed that the wrathful Hebrew God was a separate and lower entity than the all-forgiving God of the New Testament. This belief was in some ways similar to Gnostic Christian theology; notably, both are dualistic, that is, they posit opposing gods, forces, or principles: one higher, spiritual, and "good", and the other lower, material, and "evil" (compare Manichaeism). This dualism stands in contrast to other Christian and Jewish views that "evil" has no independent existence, but is a privation or lack of "good",[2] a view shared by the Jewish theologian Moses Maimonides.
Marcion Wiki

Divine Justice and loving-kindness are one thing. Mind you, it does not mean that there is no eternal salvation and condemnation, but that they are based on the fundamental choice of the free and sovereign human heart and that God will provide His indispensable help on your way. Whatever happened to God's Sovereignty in the matter of salvation towards mankind?

You can only get so far with peddling the semi-Pelagian human heart and free will. We do have this free will because I can get off my chair and head to the local grocery store. However, St Paul teaches our will is either in bondage to sin and death or in bondage to Christ.

Romans 6: NASB

12Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body so that you obey its lusts, 13and do not go on presenting the members of your body to sin as instruments of unrighteousness; but present yourselves to God as those alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God. 14For sin shall not be master over you, for you are not under law but under grace.       15What then? Shall we sin because we are not under law but under grace? May it never be! 16Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness? 17But thanks be to God that though you were slaves of sin, you became obedient from the heart to that form of teaching to which you were committed, 18and having been freed from sin, you became slaves of righteousness. 19I am speaking in human terms because of the weakness of your flesh. For just as you presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness, resulting in further lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness, resulting in sanctification.       20For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness. 21Therefore what benefit were you then deriving from the things of which you are now ashamed? For the outcome of those things is death. 22But now having been freed from sin and enslaved to God, you derive your benefit, resulting in sanctification, and the outcome, eternal life. 23For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

On the "fundamental choice of the free and sovereign human heart?" That is language not used for obvious reasons in Sacred Scriptures. Here's why...God is Sovereign in His own plan of salvation of mankind:

Ephesians 1: NASB

 3Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, 6to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved.

7In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace 8which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight 9He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him 10with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him 11also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will, 12to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ would be to the praise of His glory. 13In Him, you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation—having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14who is given as a pledge of our inheritance, with a view to the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of His glory.

Summary of the above? We have a loving God who had a plan for us before the foundations of the world. He is sovereign over His Creation. The only question should be "why?" The last two words above say it all---"His Glory."

Now to save you some time I will answer the usual straw man that gets launched in response to Ephesians chapter 1. The antinomian assertion. Meaning, if God did it all for us, aren't we just robots? The clear answer is in Ephesians chapter 2:

Ephesians 2: NASB

1And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, 2in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. 3Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. 4But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-30   17:19:29 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#20. To: Vicomte13 (#18)

I'm not convinced by either position.

I think souls in Acts of the Apostles knew the basics. That Jesus Christ died for their sins and that in Him they have repentance and forgiveness:

Luke 24: NASB

 44Now He said to them, “These are My words which I spoke to you while I was still with you, that all things which are written about Me in the Law of Moses and the Prophets and the Psalms must be fulfilled.” 45Then He opened their minds to understand the Scriptures, 46and He said to them, “Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, 47and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations, beginning from Jerusalem. 48“You are witnesses of these things. 49“And behold, I am sending forth the promise of My Father upon you; but you are to stay in the city until you are clothed with power from on high.”

The above is very simple and is the earliest Gospel message preached by the apostles after Christ's ascension.

So, no, these theological battles should not detract from the simplicity of the Gospel. The problem comes when one denies the blood of Christ shed is for the remission of sins. Some may say, ok that's true but how did that happen and why? He died to pay the penalty for sin and death. Rising from the dead showed the penalty was satisfied. Indeed Jesus did rescue us. And rescue He did by a horrible suffering and death.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-30   17:29:24 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#21. To: A Pole (#17)

Not through the payment of wergild of infinite value. Although for the Germanic barbarian minds it might the closest accessible metaphor.

Yeah, Paul and Peter were not German. I invite you to put the psalter down and start reading the entire Bible.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-30   17:30:58 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#22. To: redleghunter (#20)

A red herring. I could easily point out the first "protestants" were the Eastern Orthodox splitting from their Supreme Pontiff in Rome. See how that works.

No, it was Latins who broke from the universal catholic Church. For filioque doctrine.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-30   18:07:41 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#23. To: redleghunter (#21)

I invite you to put the psalter down and start reading the entire Bible.

I did more or less.

A Pole  posted on  2018-05-30   18:08:32 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#24. To: redleghunter (#20)

I think souls in Acts of the Apostles knew the basics.

And I think they, and Paul, were Jews, wholly filled up with Jewish concepts of religion, and that they clearly, desperately need to square the new wine in the new bottle that Jesus gave them with the old wine in the old bottle they loved.

So they spent a great deal of effort making a synthesis between their old religion, of Sinai, which always had been and still was of primary cultural and emotional importance to them, and this new thing that Jesus had done, the new things he taught them. The Acts of the Apostles and the Apostolic letters are the efforts of those Jewish men to square their Judaism with their Christianity. Within the Jewish world they were partly successful. Quite a few Jews converted, beyond just themselves, and, like them, continued to practice Judaism as Christians, with a new understanding of the significance of each element of Judaism. The Jewish scholars were not impressed by this synthesis. Still aren't. And will poke holes in it when teaching their own children and their own tribe.

I'm not a sheep from that sheepfold. I'm a child of the far, far West, raised in science and logic and law. Jews need a continuity with their storied past, because it makes them who they are. And Easterners, by this I mean the Greeks and the other Eastern Gentiles - and to a lesser extent the Italians proper - they revere history, they revere their past, which was once glorious, but which has been in decay for 1600 years. Therefore, their religious focus is on what men of the past, of that era, when they were great, said and thought. They greatly inflate the importance of "the ancients" and "tradition" for precisely this cultural reason.

As with the Jews, I show respect for the Greeks, the Italians, the Easterners, by quietly listening to their arguments, and by learning these things they think are of premier importance.

But I don't really think that any of it actually IS important. It's old wine in old bottles, next to older wine in older bottles, and it is very thickly imbued with the wants and needs of THOSE men in THOSE cultures in THOSE times. I am not one of them I am from a completely different culture, I need different things, and I am not from those times.

I listen to Jesus. I will accord the men of that time the authority that is claimed for them on one aspect - not their legal thinking, which is relatively poor and imprecise - not their way of blending old wine and what was to them new wine: their blend doesn't appeal to me - but what they came up with when they all came together and spoke authoritatively to the new Church at the Council of Jerusalem. Note how much of all of it they said that Gentiles like me needed to know and practice.

Now, an Easterner, or a Messianic Jew, would say that those minima from that Council are merely the beginning, the first baby steps, that the Apostles were removing impediments, but that once one matures in faith that THEN one must learn the rest of their own cultural confection.

To the extent that is necessary, I HAVE gone ahead and learned the Messianic Jewish and Eastern Christian dances. I understand what the Apostles were saying, and the "ancient Fathers". I'm neither ignorant nor dumb.

I simply disagree with them. I think they have vastly overemphasized authorities that were of great cultural importance to THEM, and filled the bare bones of the religion up with THEIR culture and artifacts. And then they have asserted that THEIR cultural artifacts are fundamental to the religion. They are wrong and I reject that in totality. It is not true.

I prefer different furniture, and different ways of looking at things. I know the structure of the universe and God's creative hand far better than they collectively ever did, or could. They are like children, superstitious children, or like pagans, whose stories about their gods, or their God, infused with their cultures to make something very appealing - to their co-culturalists, AND to primitive tribes on the frontier who wanted in.

But I am not some primitive tribesman looking in. I am a 21st Century scientific man looking back at them, and I see how primitive they really are in everything BUT their realization that God is. I have talked to God myself, not through their filter but directly. I don't like their filter between me and God, it is cranky, annoying and distracting. Most importantly, it isn't NECESSARY. THEIR heirs - the Messianics and the Easterners - assert that their cultural apparatus IS necessary, and they wave this Bible around AS THOUGH they were lawyers of God.

Trouble is, they're NOT lawyers, and I am. I read the same book, and I read it with better comprehension and far greater care, and I see where they joints of their argument fall apart - they believe in a set of connective tissue that IS NOT THERE in that book. They ASSERT that it is, but it isn't. So BECAUSE i know the law book so well, I SEE where people are clinging to their cultural confections and throwing them at me AS THOUGH it were law, and AS THOUGH it were necessary, but I know that it isn't, and that it does not flow from the law AS WRITTEN. It flowed from all of the unwritten laws and cultural concerns of ancient Jews and ancient Greeks - these Apostolic letters and Church Fathers were part and parcel of THOSE people, in THOSE cultures, in THAT time, with their primitive and superstitious knowledge of how the world works.

THEY asserted things about the Jewish sacrifice that are not actually IN the Torah. They mangle the structure of authority that God revealed.

But I don't want to go tearing it all apart: this is the religious basis of huge numbers of people. It "does it" for them, and that's fine. It doesn't do it for me, because it isn't actually true. It's their culture, and it really rubs my own culture the wrong way. I don't load up my religion with my own culture either: I keep it as simple and austere as it really is. It has the virtue of being true, and I know it.

I have shared it. It doesn't persuade people of the other cultures, who return to the vomit of old because they like it. That's fine. They like it. Ambergris is whale vomit, but it's the sweet smelling substance at the heart of much good perfume. To each his own.

Penal substitution was the reasoning of Jews about the sacrifices on the altar. God did not reveal what the Jews thought they were doing. Humans reasoned that out, which is to say, they made it up. Then Jewish Christians faced the death of Christ, in that way, and incorporated what happened to Jesus within the thought box of their Judaism. They wrote a lot about it and struggled about it because they were trying to effect a synthesis between the faith of their fathers and their new faith. They were taking old wine and blending it with the new wine in the new bottle. They succeeded. We're talking about what they said today, 2000 years later.

Their efforts were necessary for them. The whole line of argument leaves me cold, because it starts on a legally false premise: that what happened on the altars of Israel was itself a penal substitution, and that the priests and Jews of old actually understood why they were sacrificing animals, or that fishermen on the margins of Judaism of the time understood it.

Paul and the Apostles had strong ideas about these things. They wrote them. The ancient Greeks of the East had their own strong ideas, and they wrote, and met and jawboned a lot, and left a great corpus of material arguing for their position.

The logic is built on false initial premises and it all falls down. I have not incorporated it into my religion, because it is not true. For me to make the great effort to incorporate a great mass of ancient tradition into my religion, for the sake of respect...well, I'm not Greek. I'm not Jewish. I'm not Italian. So no. Other cultures are ok, but they're not important enough to me for me to adopt them into my religion. No.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-05-31   7:00:43 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#25. To: redleghunter, A Pole (#12)

(To A Pole) And our previous conversation:

This above is post modern atheistic "optics." Show it. (A Pole)

No problem. The atheistic rant is God is a big "meanie." To soften the Holy God of the Bible and His wrath against sin, some Christians are trying to 'soften' the image of God to appease a post-modern sensitive society.

I think it is all too clear why the early fathers I quoted taught what they did. That Jesus Christ satisfied the wrath of God against sin.

When we try to encapsulate God in man's understanding according to man's ways error will occur.

As I mentioned the Ransom theory is solid. It is just incomplete. I quoted the fathers who quoted and commented on the pertinent Holy Scriptures. They teach Jesus satisfied the Father's wrath by suffering and dying for us.

Awesome rebuttal to what was at its core a purposely convoluted mental contortion and caricature of the simplicity of the Gospel. "Man's Way" *is* self-delusion and self-destructive. He cannot get out of the way of creating his own "softer" alternative truth. Truly, "narrow IS the road".

Not only was this entire original exercise and context based on a false premise to begin with, but as you clearly demonstrate, the early Church Fathers backed-up the truth of the matter (thanks for bolding key quotes.)

Moreover, as reinforcement, you've cited (and bolded) key verses in Isaiah 53 and Colossians 2 which help right the ship.

Believers must remain steadfast and continue to expect attacks upon our Faith. Snipers will continue to undermine the clarity of God's Word -- dismissing the fulfilled prophecies, efficacy of Christ's sacrifice and His own words: "IT IS DONE".

Liberator  posted on  2018-05-31   12:34:22 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#26. To: redleghunter, Vicomte13 (#20)

No, these theological battles should not detract from the simplicity of the Gospel. The problem comes when one denies the blood of Christ shed is for the remission of sins.

Some may say, ok that's true but how did that happen and why? He died to pay the penalty for sin and death. Rising from the dead showed the penalty was satisfied. Indeed Jesus did rescue us. And rescue He did by a horrible suffering and death.

Yes, the Gospel is THIS simple.

Believing that one must leap through several hoops of fire...several convoluted layers and protocols as if it's a boot camp obstacle course just isn't the case; nor is believing alternatively that Jesus could not/would not EVER forgive their sins were their heart change. These more Lies designed to discourage, dishearten and misdirect. People can't help but unnecessarily ensnared in over-thinking the theological minutia. Jesus had an answer:

Jesus: "And said, Verily I say unto you, Except you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." ~ Matthew 18:3 (King James 2000 Bible)

Liberator  posted on  2018-05-31   12:48:53 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#27. To: Vicomte13 (#24)

And I think they, and Paul, were Jews, wholly filled up with Jewish concepts of religion, and that they clearly, desperately need to square the new wine in the new bottle that Jesus gave them with the old wine in the old bottle they loved.

I don't see any evidence of this at all in Acts and the epistles.

So they spent a great deal of effort making a synthesis between their old religion, of Sinai, which always had been and still was of primary cultural and emotional importance to them, and this new thing that Jesus had done, the new things he taught them. The Acts of the Apostles and the Apostolic letters are the efforts of those Jewish men to square their Judaism with their Christianity. Within the Jewish world they were partly successful. Quite a few Jews converted, beyond just themselves, and, like them, continued to practice Judaism as Christians, with a new understanding of the significance of each element of Judaism. The Jewish scholars were not impressed by this synthesis. Still aren't. And will poke holes in it when teaching their own children and their own tribe.

Considering Jesus Christ was fulfilling the Law and Prophets, again not seeing the above as a credible argument.

THEY asserted things about the Jewish sacrifice that are not actually IN the Torah. They mangle the structure of authority that God revealed.

How did the apostles do this? Leviticus 16 is all over Paul's and Peter's epistles.

Paul and the Apostles had strong ideas about these things. Probably because Jesus gave them such authority?

The logic is built on false initial premises and it all falls down. Therefore, according to your own view, the apostles were false prophets in accordance with Deuteronomy 18?

Deuteronomy 18:15-22 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

15 “The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him. 16 This is according to all that you asked of the Lord your God in Horeb on the day of the assembly, saying, ‘Let me not hear again the voice of the Lord my God, let me not see this great fire anymore, or I will die.’

17 The Lord said to me, ‘They have spoken well. 18 I will raise up a prophet from among their countrymen like you, and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him. 19 It shall come about that whoever will not listen to My words which he shall speak in My name, I Myself will require it of him. 20 But the prophet who speaks a word presumptuously in My name which I have not commanded him to speak, or which he speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.’ 21 You may say in your heart, ‘How will we know the word which the Lord has not spoken?’ 22 When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.

So in the case of the apostles and NT writers, if they did not faithfully communicate the Gospel of Christ and His doctrines, by the above passage they would be false prophets.

A very tenuous position to be in for a Roman Catholic. Even under the Vicarius Filii Dei of Francis.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-31   17:43:21 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#28. To: Liberator (#25)

Believers must remain steadfast and continue to expect attacks upon our Faith. Snipers will continue to undermine the clarity of God's Word -- dismissing the fulfilled prophecies, efficacy of Christ's sacrifice and His own words: "IT IS DONE".

Bolded above is key. Begs the question...what exactly was 'finished' or 'done.'

Good point.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-05-31   17:45:42 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#29. To: redleghunter (#27) (Edited)

22 When a prophet speaks in the name of the Lord, if the thing does not come about or come true, that is the thing which the Lord has not spoken. The prophet has spoken it presumptuously; you shall not be afraid of him.

By the standards of Deuteronomy 18:22, Jesus was a false prophet. This was the reason for his execution, and Jews still believe that about him (though they are nice about it). He said he was returning soon many times. He never did. False prophet. Christianity is a lie. Here endeth the discussion, for a Jew.

If you're going to cite Jewish law, which never applied to anybody but Jews, then I'm going to apply Jewish law and dismiss Christianity as a religion based on a false prophet. Jesus did not return SOON. He was a false prophet. End of story. End of religion.

I'm not a Jew, and I recognize that the Torah, on its own terms, has no authority whatever over anybody but Jews before the Temple was destroying.

If the Roman Catholic Church does not understand it, then it's wrong on that. Oh well. The Church burnt a messenger of God alive as a witch, so it has certainly made some really terrible errors. This would not be the only one - if, of course, the Catholic Church actually takes up whatever the position it is that makes what I think "problematic".

I don't think you should have this conversation with me.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-01   11:14:02 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#30. To: Vicomte13 (#29)

By the standards of Deuteronomy 18:22, Jesus was a false prophet. This was the reason for his execution, and Jews still believe that about him (though they are nice about it). He said he was returning soon many times. He never did. False prophet. Christianity is a lie. Here endeth the discussion, for a Jew. If you're going to cite Jewish law, which never applied to anybody but Jews, then I'm going to apply Jewish law and dismiss Christianity as a religion based on a false prophet. Jesus did not return SOON. He was a false prophet. End of story. End of religion. I'm not a Jew, and I recognize that the Torah, on its own terms, has no authority whatever over anybody but Jews before the Temple was destroying. If the Roman Catholic Church does not understand it, then it's wrong on that. Oh well. The Church burnt a messenger of God alive as a witch, so it has certainly made some really terrible errors. This would not be the only one - if, of course, the Catholic Church actually takes up whatever the position it is that makes what I think "problematic". I don't think you should have this conversation with me.

We were speaking of the apostles and how you did not view their works as inspired writings.

But that was a good attempt at changing the subject.

It's not about the Jews of the 1st century, but your views here in 21st century.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-06-01   17:09:20 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#31. To: redleghunter (#30)

Ok, then let's have the conversation then.

What the Apostles wrote was inspired by God. Like Genesis. That does not mean that it is without error, or factually true.

The Sistine Chapel painting is also obviously inspired by God. That does not mean that the painter's vision is really what happened.

Inspired by God means just that. It means that the man was filled with zeal and faith and took up the pen. It does not mean that God was dictating what he wrote.

Jesus is the one we have to follow. What Jesus says is what counts. So, what did Jesus say? He said that you will not be forgiven if you do not forgive. Therefore, doctrines that say you are forgiven by his blood, or by confession to a priest, or any other technique that does not require forgiveness of others on your part, is false.

Jesus death and blood, penal substitution, does not forgive your sins if you refuse to forgive others theirs. Jesus himself said so, directly. Jesus is God, speaking directly. Paul is merely inspired by God. What Paul writes is utterly erased by Jesus where it contradicts Jesus.

What is in the Torah is, likewise, erased by Jesus where Jesus changes it - that's for Jews. Nothing in the Torah, including the Ten Commandments, ever applied to Gentiles. A different law was revealed to us.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-01   23:27:11 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#32. To: Vicomte13, redleghunter (#31)

Inspired by God means just that. It means that the man was filled with zeal and faith and took up the pen. It does not mean that God was dictating what he wrote.

Jesus is the one we have to follow. What Jesus says is what counts. So, what did Jesus say? He said that you will not be forgiven if you do not forgive. Therefore, doctrines that say you are forgiven by his blood, or by confession to a priest, or any other technique that does not require forgiveness of others on your part, is false.

Pardon me for wading in here...

Obviously the words of Jesus Christ "count".

But in the case of the prophets as well as the Apostles, their passion was far beyond mere "zeal"; the Holy Spirit was the "inspiration". The authority of the Holy Spirit is co-equal with God the Father and the Son.

Paul is merely inspired by God. What Paul writes is utterly erased by Jesus where it contradicts Jesus.

Paul's authority is as the voice of Jesus Christ. As is the case with all the NT authors.

Speaking of which:

Dismissing the NT Epistles and "inspired" writings as Authority or proxies of Jesus Christ strips away the absolutes of the entire NT, other than Jesus own Red Letter quotes.

You ask, "What DID Jesus say?" DID He dispense and assign His authority?

"But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you." ~ Jesus Christ (John 14:26, NKJV)

With respect specifically to Paul, Jesus Himself selected Paul for his task and position and message of spreading and fulfilling the ministry of Jesus Christ. This claim is indeed supported and cited in several NT verses.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-02   11:45:54 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#33. To: Liberator, Vicomte13, redleghunter (#32)

Paul's authority is as the voice of Jesus Christ. As is the case with all the NT authors.

I have somehow different approach.

I read Saint Paul critically, the same way I read an outstanding philosopher. And I find that almost every time he is writing truth in deeper, wiser way than other wise men.

As a result, I come to the conclusion that he is inspired by God.

Same way even with the Gospels, they persuaded me by their loftiness, purity and rightness, so I became a Christian.

A Pole  posted on  2018-06-02   12:51:36 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#34. To: A Pole (#33)

I read Saint Paul critically, the same way I read an outstanding philosopher. And I find that almost every time he is writing truth in deeper, wiser way than other wise men. As a result, I come to the conclusion that he is inspired by God.

Same way even with the Gospels, they persuaded me by their loftiness, purity and rightness, so I became a Christian.

Amen. The ability to read Paul's writings (say in Romans) "critically" but also recognize his words as "inspired by God" means you are a blessed man....

It should indeed be obvious that Paul's words/writing were "deeper and wiser than other wise men". But why?

Would the reason be that his "wisdom" came directly *from* God Himself? This would also mean that every time Paul addressed others in the Spirit as he spread the Gospel, with each and every word and verse uttered (then written), *only* THE "truth" -- as intended by the Holy Spirit -- was uttered or written for posterity.

There can be no higher "loftiness, purity and right[eous]ness" of philosophy than that of The Father and Son. Again, we are reminded in John 14:26 that Paul and the Apostles would know exactly what to say with respect to the Gospel as well as our instructions as Christians.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-02   13:33:42 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#35. To: Liberator (#34) (Edited)

Amen. The ability to read Paul's writings (say in Romans) "critically" but also recognize his words as "inspired by God" means you are a blessed man....

Thank you. I started to read New Testament as a non-believer, I ended believing.

I read Old Testament and I saw that OT was a preparation for the message of NT.

It should indeed be obvious that Paul's words/writing were "deeper and wiser than other wise men". But why?

I saw that the answers to the questions that puzzled me, were superior to what I found in philosophy and psychology.

While my friends and society around were going slowly away from their religion, I must have reverse gear stuck :)

I felt I was suffocating in the modern world and I found air to breath.

That is why I love "Amazing Grace" song.

A Pole  posted on  2018-06-02   13:48:33 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#36. To: A Pole (#35)

Thanks for sharing -- beautiful account, A Pole. Your are a Brother.

The World is trying to "suffocate" everyone of faith, including nominal Believers. And creating doubt. Give them no oxygen. That's why we must continue feeding on The Word.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-02   14:44:09 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#37. To: Vicomte13 (#31)

The Sistine Chapel painting is also obviously inspired by God. That does not mean that the painter's vision is really what happened.

Lost me here. How is a Renaissance painting equivalent to apostolic writings and teachings?

redleghunter  posted on  2018-06-02   16:47:05 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#38. To: A Pole (#33)

I read Saint Paul critically, the same way I read an outstanding philosopher. And I find that almost every time he is writing truth in deeper, wiser way than other wise men.

As a result, I come to the conclusion that he is inspired by God.

Same way even with the Gospels, they persuaded me by their loftiness, purity and rightness, so I became a Christian.

Excellent post.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-06-02   16:49:43 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#39. To: Liberator, Vicomte 13 (#32)

Dismissing the NT Epistles and "inspired" writings as Authority or proxies of Jesus Christ strips away the absolutes of the entire NT, other than Jesus own Red Letter quotes.

I think that is the goal here. Strip away apostolic authority imbued by God and we only have Vic left to interpret Jesus's red letters for us.

While ignoring it was the apostles who actually recorded the words of Jesus.

Also consider the very early belief by the church which had Luke's gospel account from Paul's perspective.

redleghunter  posted on  2018-06-02   16:54:01 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#40. To: Liberator (#32)

Paul's authority is as the voice of Jesus Christ.

Absolutely not.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-02   22:21:04 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#41. To: redleghunter (#39)

Had to go personal, hmm? "Only have Vic left?"

I have done nothing like that, or suggested anything like that.

I really detest your religion, because you people cannot talk to other people like decent human beings. You go nasty.

I'm not trying to lead you at all. Go where you please. I'm simply going to go away. I don't care what you believe. And I'm not going to talk to you anymore.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-02   22:24:00 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#42. To: redleghunter, Vicomte13 (#39)

I think that is the goal here. Strip away apostolic authority imbued by God and we only have Vic left to interpret Jesus's red letters for us.

Yup. Hear ya.

I don't understand the dismissive 'tude of ignoring what is clearly apostolic authority imbued by God Himself, inspired by the Holy Spirit. Backed by several scriptural citations.

Acts 9:15 (26:16; 22:14,15)

2 Peter 3:15,16

Galatians 2:7-9; Acts 15:22-32

Acts 13:1-4

Etal.

While ignoring it was the apostles who actually recorded the words of Jesus.

Exactly. That historical recording along with the Epistles teachings comprise Christ's Church the teachings and reinforcement of the Gospel. Without Apostolic witnessing and recording, we have no New Testament, do we?

Here's a question for Vic:

If you dismiss Paul as a voice of Jesus Christ, then how can the Catholic Church claim Peter as "Vicar of Christ"?

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-03   11:20:21 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#43. To: Vicomte13, redleghunter (#41)

Had to go personal, hmm? "Only have Vic left?"

I have done nothing like that, or suggested anything like that.

That was obviously only tongue in cheek, Vic. Come on.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-03   11:22:48 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#44. To: redleghunter (#39)

Also consider the very early belief by the church which had Luke's gospel account from Paul's perspective.

Yup. Backed up in spades. Apostle Luke, author of his Gospel namesake and accounts fully links to Paul.

Liberator  posted on  2018-06-03   11:28:33 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#45. To: Liberator (#43)

That was obviously only tongue in cheek, Vic. Come on.

Ok.

Well, I still don't think it's a good idea for me to continue to talk about religion here.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-04   15:13:51 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


#46. To: Liberator (#42)

If you dismiss Paul as a voice of Jesus Christ, then how can the Catholic Church claim Peter as "Vicar of Christ"?

Non sequitur.

Vicomte13  posted on  2018-06-04   15:14:23 ET  Reply   Trace   Private Reply  


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