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Couple of Questions

Silmarien

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Does anyone have any experience converting as an adult? Particularly after having once been hostile towards the religion? I'm all over the place theologically right now.

I could believe in the Resurrection (non-bodily, at least)--I like the argument that the disciples had to have experienced something to go to such lengths after the fact, but I've also seen the counterarguments so it's a bit of a coin toss. That's a jump I could make, but I've realized that I'm still very divided--on an aesthetic and moral level, I love the religion, but my atheist years were spent going after Christian theology in philosophy classes, so there's a fair amount of intellectual hostility there that I never actually defused. It's getting better, but I'm probably going to have to do a lot of theological reading. C.S. Lewis first, though.

Would anyone have any advice for this sort of situation? I've moved close enough to the religion now that not being able to believe (or not believing enough) is a bit stressful, but it's a long way back from hostile atheism, especially if you're not entirely convinced that this isn't just some mad flight of fancy (I'm prone to such things).

Also, I'll have to discuss it with the priest eventually, but at what point is it appropriate to take communion? It'd feel blasphemous to do so right now, since I don't identify as Christian, but I'm not sure when that changes. Episcopal, so the actual requirements are lax.
 

th1b.taylor

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Bill,

That's an excellent resource. I have a hard-back copy and it cost me over $50. It's called Baker Encyclopedia of Christian Apologetics by Norman Geisler (Baker Books 1998). Amazon has used copies from $11.63. See HERE.

Oz
Since I cannot deal with fonts below a 13 point, these days, I gave most of my commentaries and Norman's greatest work to a pastor that had just surrendered to the ministry. I miss being able to use that when answering this type of questions, it is so on the mark and every reference isw bibliographed, beautiful work.
 

OzSpen

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Since I cannot deal with fonts below a 13 point, these days, I gave most of my commentaries and Norman's greatest work to a pastor that had just surrendered to the ministry. I miss being able to use that when answering this type of questions, it is so on the mark and every reference isw bibliographed, beautiful work.

Here! Here! Geisler is such a careful scholar. I don't agree with his dispensational eschatology, but his apologetic and systematic theological works are brilliant in their extent and carefully reasoned assessments.
 

Silmarien

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Okay, I'm looking into some of the names that have been coming up. I'd rather stick to what I can find in the library instead of building up my own private collection just yet. I don't think we have any of the specific recommendations, but the more seemingly relevant stuff I've found:

Craig:
Reasonable Faith

Wright:
Simply Christian : why Christianity makes sense
Christian origins and the question of God
Paul and his recent interpreters : some contemporary debates
Simply good news : why the gospel is news and what makes it good
Simply Jesus : who he was, what he did, why it matters
The challenge of Jesus : rediscovering who Jesus was and is

They've also got debates between Craig and Crossan, as well as between Wright and Borg, on the historical Jesus. I haven't read them but I certainly recognize those liberal names, so seeing the two sides debate instead of reading stuff in isolation would probably be helpful.

N.T. Wright is a bit of a treasure trove. He seems to be specifically geared towards absolutely everything I'm looking for, and from what I can tell, addresses postmodern issues in a constructive way. And Anglican, so I can almost certainly discuss him with my priest. Seems like a very good conservative option to dive into first.

Geisler, on the other hand, appears to be a bit too politicized, which means I'm unlikely to be able to read anything by him without hostility. Really not the right mindset right now, so that'll have to wait.

There's a fair amount of Timothy Keller available too, though I'm probably going to be chewing on Wright for a while.

Reasonable Faith and Simply Christian seem like the best starting points, what with being general apologetics. Do you guys know if they (or any of the others above) really deal with the Resurrection evidence?

Have you ever heard the Gospel?

Yep! Well, I skipped Luke and went straight to John, but I'll backtrack once I pull myself out of apologetics. :)

Here! Here! Geisler is such a careful scholar. I don't agree with his dispensational eschatology, but his apologetic and systematic theological works are brilliant in their extent and carefully reasoned assessments.

Are you a theologian? You certainly don't strike me as a layperson!
 

OzSpen

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1. No formal training, I've just accumulated knowledge here and there--mostly of a liberal bias, yes. Not specifically Christianity but religion in general. It's uncomfortable for me to switch from viewing something as interesting in the greater scheme of world religion to zeroing in on one and saying, "Maybe this one actually is true." It's getting less strange with time, but it's definitely still jarring.

Silmarien,

I'll reply to your 5 points one at a time to make my posts shorter. I was raised in a religiously liberal home and it wasn't until my parents were converted from liberalism to biblical Christianity that I was even open to other evidence. I did not pursue the evidence wherever it led until that time of conversion for my parents.

What has caused you to consider that the liberal bias of accumulate knowledge is correct? This indicates that you have censored some important areas for consideration. Why have you done that? Have you ever considered how your 'liberal bias' lines up with reality - the truth? Why liberal and not conservative? What attracts you to liberal religion?

You don't like going from the general (greater scheme of world religion) to the specific of one religion being true. Surely this should not be a difficult thing for you to do because you are forced to do it in everyday life, even with much lesser products. Do you use a mobile phone? If so, surely you have examined a range of mobile phones before concluding a certain one was the best for you. That's what I had to do recently.

You do this in a whole range of activities. What causes you and me to take medicine prescribed by the Dr and not swallow


The purpose of the product influences that choice.

When it comes to the choosing which religion is the truth, it takes care in comparing that religion with reality, facts/truth. What is truth when you examine religion?

Have you found a better search engine on the www than Google? Why does Google seem to be the preferred product over, say, Bing or Yahoo?

Another analogy would be when something happens to the motor of your automobile. Do you choose to take it to a motor mechanic instead of a painter or cabinet maker? You can be narrow in your choices.

When it comes to dealing with the worldviews of any religion, I challenge you to examine which of those worldviews fits reality. See the difficulties with:
Silmarien, you face a major hurdle before you can even begin to investigate worldviews, religion and God. You start at the wrong end of your inquiry, by excluding certain evidence. When you start with a liberal bias, you will see liberal views in a much more favourable way and anti-liberal views negatively. This is not a beneficial way to examine evidence.

I hope you realise the self-defeating nature of your view with a ‘liberal bias’. You don’t like one-way religion but you have chosen that view yourself with your present worldview, i.e. religion with a liberal bias. That’s every bit as one-way as biblical Christianity. Do you realise how self-defeating your argument is?

May I suggest a better approach: Pursue the evidence, wherever it leads.

Sincerely,
Oz
 
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OzSpen

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Okay, I'm looking into some of the names that have been coming up. I'd rather stick to what I can find in the library instead of building up my own private collection just yet. I don't think we have any of the specific recommendations, but the more seemingly relevant stuff I've found:

Craig:
Reasonable Faith

Wright:
Simply Christian : why Christianity makes sense
Christian origins and the question of God
Paul and his recent interpreters : some contemporary debates
Simply good news : why the gospel is news and what makes it good
Simply Jesus : who he was, what he did, why it matters
The challenge of Jesus : rediscovering who Jesus was and is

They've also got debates between Craig and Crossan, as well as between Wright and Borg, on the historical Jesus. I haven't read them but I certainly recognize those liberal names, so seeing the two sides debate instead of reading stuff in isolation would probably be helpful.

N.T. Wright is a bit of a treasure trove. He seems to be specifically geared towards absolutely everything I'm looking for, and from what I can tell, addresses postmodern issues in a constructive way. And Anglican, so I can almost certainly discuss him with my priest. Seems like a very good conservative option to dive into first.

Geisler, on the other hand, appears to be a bit too politicized, which means I'm unlikely to be able to read anything by him without hostility. Really not the right mindset right now, so that'll have to wait.

There's a fair amount of Timothy Keller available too, though I'm probably going to be chewing on Wright for a while.

Reasonable Faith and Simply Christian seem like the best starting points, what with being general apologetics. Do you guys know if they (or any of the others above) really deal with the Resurrection evidence?

Yep! Well, I skipped Luke and went straight to John, but I'll backtrack once I pull myself out of apologetics. :)

Are you a theologian? You certainly don't strike me as a layperson!

Silmarien,

You have chosen some pretty good starting points with William Lane Craig's Reasonable Faith and N T Wright's Simply Christian. Be warned that Craig can become strong in a philosophical approach at times and you'll need to read carefully to go with his reasoning. He's a strong defender of orthodox Christianity. He will challenge your liberal bias.

I'm concerned with your statement, 'Geisler, on the other hand, appears to be a bit too politicized'. What do you mean by that? How much of Geisler have you read to arrive at that conclusion? Could you be jumping to conclusions before you pursue the evidence, wherever it leads?

As for myself, I'm an ordained evangelical Christian minister and independent New Testament researcher, living in Brisbane, Qld., Australia. I'm enjoying some dimensions of retirement.

My specialty is the historical Jesus. I joined this forum in 2014 to get a little light relief from the PhD dissertation I was writing (dissertation-only in the British system). I finished it in 2015 (488pp) and the topic was an examination of the presuppositions of John Dominic Crossan (liberal scholar and member of the Jesus Seminar) that led him to believe that Jesus' resurrection was an apparition. I'm in the process of organising multiple journal articles, based on that dissertation. They will not be stodgy journal articles like those found in many academic journals. That is because of my background.

I was a radio DJ, advertising copywriter, TV journalist and newsreader by trade before entering the Christian ministry.

Oz
 
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OzSpen

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Reasonable Faith and Simply Christian seem like the best starting points, what with being general apologetics. Do you guys know if they (or any of the others above) really deal with the Resurrection evidence?

Silmarien,

I have William Lane Craig's, Reasonable Faith (Crossway Books 1994) in my library. His chapter 8 (pp 255-299 in my edition) covers 'The Resurrection of Jesus'.

Chapter 8 of Wright's Simply Christian is titled, 'Jesus: Rescue and Renewal'. It might contain some info on the resurrection. However, please remember that this book is one of abbreviated material by Wright. If you really want to get into Wright's extensive (but readable) research on the resurrection, I highly recommend, The Resurrection of the Son of God (Fortress Press 2003). I have a paperback copy and have read big chunks of it. Magnificent examination of this crucial topic.

Oz
 

th1b.taylor

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Okay, I'm looking into some of the names that have been coming up. I'd rather stick to what I can find in the library instead of building up my own private collection just yet. I don't think we have any of the specific recommendations, but the more seemingly relevant stuff I've found:

Craig:
Reasonable Faith

Wright:
Simply Christian : why Christianity makes sense
Christian origins and the question of God
Paul and his recent interpreters : some contemporary debates
Simply good news : why the gospel is news and what makes it good
Simply Jesus : who he was, what he did, why it matters
The challenge of Jesus : rediscovering who Jesus was and is

They've also got debates between Craig and Crossan, as well as between Wright and Borg, on the historical Jesus. I haven't read them but I certainly recognize those liberal names, so seeing the two sides debate instead of reading stuff in isolation would probably be helpful.

N.T. Wright is a bit of a treasure trove. He seems to be specifically geared towards absolutely everything I'm looking for, and from what I can tell, addresses postmodern issues in a constructive way. And Anglican, so I can almost certainly discuss him with my priest. Seems like a very good conservative option to dive into first.

Geisler, on the other hand, appears to be a bit too politicized, which means I'm unlikely to be able to read anything by him without hostility. Really not the right mindset right now, so that'll have to wait.

There's a fair amount of Timothy Keller available too, though I'm probably going to be chewing on Wright for a while.

Reasonable Faith and Simply Christian seem like the best starting points, what with being general apologetics. Do you guys know if they (or any of the others above) really deal with the Resurrection evidence?



Yep! Well, I skipped Luke and went straight to John, but I'll backtrack once I pull myself out of apologetics. :)



Are you a theologian? You certainly don't strike me as a layperson!
There is an Elephant in the Church that I pray you get past. Liberal Christian is an Oxymoron. You see, repent means to turn from or to go the or another way. When I was a Lost Sinner I was a very Liberal Man. I did what made me feel good and better than half of those first forty-five years, I was a Diest because God had spoken to me in Vietnam.

Jesus teaches us in the Gospels to seek to obey His Commands. To obey, one must submit to... Now, when the Holy Spirit overcomes and indwells you you will be able to see Him in action in the Old Testament and because you will have come to believe John 1:1-3.

You will also hear from the Liberal Christian that the Old Testament was replaced by the New and that there is no need to study what God did before the birth of our Savior. However, if you read the Bible through it is clear that Jesus taught from the Bible and the New Testament had not been written at that time. With any good Scofield Bible, and other good Chain Referenced Bibles it is easily seen that the Bible is the first 39 books and that the following 27 books are God inspired Lif Application Commentaries.

Now, what is the point of all this gibberish I spout? You should learn that nobody was ever saved obeying the Ten Commandments and that their attempt to do so only got them as far as Paradise/Abraham's Buxom and they were not released from there to go to Heaven until Jesus had died on the cross and spiritually went there to preach the Gospel to them and when they accepted Him as Savoir, He released them and they were seen walking the streets of the Holy City, Jerusalem. (Matt. 27:52&53)

But oh that word, but, Paul who was seated under the one on one instruction of Jesus for about three years (Phil 1:11-18) taught us that the Ten Commandment, written in stone by the finger of God, are our Teacher. You, like I, have without doubt broken them but when and if you take the LORD for your own you, as was I, will be forgiven, justifying you.

It is for that reason that I do my feeble best not to break them and if or when I dom I pray for forgiveness and repent of that. Praying for your Eternal Soul.
 

OzSpen

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It's necessary to have an experience with God to get to know Him. Reading words in a Bible only gives you stories about other men who had experiences with God.

iam777,

That's not what 2 Tim 3:16-17 (ESV) states: 'All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work'.

Scripture is theopneustos (breathed out by God, i.e. it emanates from God). Reading words in the Bible is reading the message from God that is profitable for teaching, correction and training in righteousness. It equips the people of God to be competent in every good work - what we are supposed to do following salvation.

You won't know which God you are wanting to experience unless you know the Trinitarian God revealed in Scripture. When you separate experience with God from the God revealed in Scripture, we have no idea which God you are talking about.

Oz
 

Silmarien

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What has caused you to consider that the liberal bias of accumulate knowledge is correct? This indicates that you have censored some important areas for consideration. Why have you done that? Have you ever considered how your 'liberal bias' lines up with reality - the truth? Why liberal and not conservative? What attracts you to liberal religion?

I walked away from Christianity as a child because of evolution. I'm not sure if dropping literalism means dropping conservativism, because there have been people who've read Genesis as allegory since the religion first started up. That seems to be even more common in Judaism. I didn't know that this stuff could be read in layers when I was seven, but I certainly know it now. I'm not ready to say it's divinely inspired because I'm not actually a believer--if I decide the Resurrection happened, I can then start working on the question of how much of the rest is true, but that seems a bit backwards as a starting point.

Can you be conservative and read the Garden of Eden metaphorically? I find it a very powerful statement when viewed symbolically, but when taken literally, I think it's blatantly misogynistic. My liberal bias very clearly lines up to the reality that Eve has been used as an excuse to justify the oppression of women throughout all of Judeo-Christian history. This is a tragedy in Christianity's case because the Gospel is the opposite of misogynistic, but there's other stuff in there that people have used to defend whatever terrible point of view they've had for centuries. I could very easily look at the Garden of Eden metaphorically and say that man's estrangement from God has had many results, including a tendency towards gender oppression, but a literal reading of it is beyond me. I am sympathetic to evangelical feminist thought (i.e., that female subordination was a result of the curse and Christ's blood washed it away as well), but I lean towards the liberal view that the Word of God was filtered through a patriarchal culture and picked up some of its bias. Could God have intended the systemic oppression of women throughout almost all of known history? I don't know one way or the other, but I'd rather not blame Him for it when I know enough about mankind to realize that we absolutely would have edited stories to fit our own agenda. We do it all the time, so my liberal bias is matching up perfectly with reality. This doesn't mean the Bible isn't divinely inspired, but it does mean infallibility is a hard sell for me.

I also strongly disapprove of the suppression of free thought. The answer to someone having problems with certain issues isn't, "Your view is wrong and needs to be corrected." It's open dialogue. "Correction" throughout Christian history has tended to involve inquisitions and crusades, dissent led to massacres between Catholics and Protestants. Are all views equally valid? No. That doesn't make coercion a legitimate way of enforcing agreement. This is by definition a liberal view, though not necessarily inconsistent with conservative theology.

And my final major issue is that I have linguistic concerns. This again isn't at odds with conservative theology, but it does mean I would need to master Hebrew and Koine Greek to be able to trust Scripture entirely. I've seen translation controversies pop up in debates as serious as eternal damnation vs. universal reconciliation, and that is kind of a major issue. I'm multilingual and have some interest in translation, so I'm very aware of how complicated it is and how much room for error actually exists. If I do ever come to believe that the Bible actually is the Word of God, I'll go learn the languages, but that seems like overkill right now.

I hope you realise the self-defeating nature of your view with a ‘liberal bias’. You don’t like one-way religion but you have chosen that view yourself with your present worldview, i.e. religion with a liberal bias. That’s every bit as one-way as biblical Christianity. Do you realise how self-defeating your argument is?

May I suggest a better approach: Pursue the evidence, wherever it leads.

Did you write this up before my last post? I would think it obvious that pursuing the evidence is specifically what I want to do. I have every intention of taking a look at conservative scholarship.

But could you please stop berating me for the way my mind works? This isn't a debate, and you're really not winning me over to your side of the argument by attacking where I am right now. My 'liberal bias' mostly consists of the types of questions and concerns that come up for me. If they can be answered in a way I find convincing, I'm not at all opposed to adopting different views. I've done it plenty of times in the past.

I'm concerned with your statement, 'Geisler, on the other hand, appears to be a bit too politicized'. What do you mean by that? How much of Geisler have you read to arrive at that conclusion? Could you be jumping to conclusions before you pursue the evidence, wherever it leads?

His endorsement of Donald Trump. :) In all seriousness, I disapprove immensely of the politicization of religion. He seems to mix the two a fair amount, and that makes me believe that I'm not his intended audience. N.T. Wright seems the perfect first stop, and I can only read so much at once anyway. I'll probably need to grab his behemoth Resurrection work eventually, but I'll stick to the basic apologetics for now.

There is an Elephant in the Church that I pray you get past. Liberal Christian is an Oxymoron. You see, repent means to turn from or to go the or another way. When I was a Lost Sinner I was a very Liberal Man. I did what made me feel good and better than half of those first forty-five years, I was a Diest because God had spoken to me in Vietnam.

There are politically progressive, theologically conservative Christians out there. I've even seen a couple here. ;)

I'm not sure why liberalism is always conflated with hedonism--you can be against shaming women for sexual behavior that would be excused in a man without being a proponent of (and much less a participant in) modern hook-up culture. I assume it involves a lot of careful introspection, but politically conservative Christianity should too--when you've got a history of using the Bible to justify slavery, segregation, and denying people suffrage, you've tossed out the Synoptics and turned yourself into an oxymoron too.
 

eddif

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I will tell a little story from my experience.

One of my bored buddy decided to take me to take me to talk with an atheist couple ( he has since died).

For an hour or so I defended Christianity with scripture and science (the science angered them).

At the end the lady said (well one day we will know). The atheist man in shock said ( well I guess we all have our doubts).
So
The best testimony for Christianity probably came from the atheists. A work was already going on inside them. I just happened to be there.

I thoroughly believe human body anatomical symbolism is an encouragement for Christian belief, but it is not all about knowledge and presentation. God has placed a measure of faith in everyone. That one measure is enough to bring salvation.

To this day I still give the atheists credit for the best testimony that day.

eddif
 

OzSpen

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Ask the Bible if all the words in it came from the knowledge of Christ.

Ask the Bible if it knows that atheists and liars read the words in it and use them for their own benefit.

Ask the Bible if it knows you're authorized by the Holy Spirit to interpret the prophecies.

Ask the Bible if it can see, hear or speak.

Anyone who believes the Bible is the word of God has been deceived by the heathens who told them that lie.

You used 'ask the Bible' 4 times. That's an irrational statement. You cannot ask a written document anything!

You say that 'Anyone who believes the Bible is the word of God has been deceived by the heathens who told them that lie'. The Bible says something radically different to your false statement. It states:

16 All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, 17 that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work' (2 Tim 3:16-17 ESV).​

The Bible is Scripture and it is breathed out by God (theopneustos). I'll believe what the Bible says about itself and not what iam777 invents.

Oz
 

atpollard

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Can you be conservative and read the Garden of Eden metaphorically? I find it a very powerful statement when viewed symbolically, but when taken literally, I think it's blatantly misogynistic. My liberal bias very clearly lines up to the reality that Eve has been used as an excuse to justify the oppression of women throughout all of Judeo-Christian history. This is a tragedy in Christianity's case because the Gospel is the opposite of misogynistic, but there's other stuff in there that people have used to defend whatever terrible point of view they've had for centuries. I could very easily look at the Garden of Eden metaphorically and say that man's estrangement from God has had many results, including a tendency towards gender oppression, but a literal reading of it is beyond me. I am sympathetic to evangelical feminist thought (i.e., that female subordination was a result of the curse and Christ's blood washed it away as well), but I lean towards the liberal view that the Word of God was filtered through a patriarchal culture and picked up some of its bias. Could God have intended the systemic oppression of women throughout almost all of known history? I don't know one way or the other, but I'd rather not blame Him for it when I know enough about mankind to realize that we absolutely would have edited stories to fit our own agenda. We do it all the time, so my liberal bias is matching up perfectly with reality. This doesn't mean the Bible isn't divinely inspired, but it does mean infallibility is a hard sell for me.

If you have some free time, I suggest you check out a debate:
Topic: A Christian wife is to obey her husband in all things (except sin) in fear of him since he is her lord/master/head.

https://www.christforums.org/main/debate/theological-debate/24670-debate-a-christian-wife
 

Silmarien

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For an hour or so I defended Christianity with scripture and science (the science angered them).

Haha, yeah, we do get angry about it easily. I've now had three atheist friends react with shock and displeasure when I mention I've been going to church a bit.

The hostility runs deep, though. I desperately want to give in and believe sometimes, but I'm still recoiling when actually faced with the possibility. Hopefully enough apologetics will deal with that, but in the meantime I'll continue praying to the Trinity I can't believe in, haha. This is so weird.

I saw you mention the anatomical symbolism elsewhere, by the way. I'm pretty intrigued.

If you have some free time, I suggest you check out a debate:
Topic: A Christian wife is to obey her husband in all things (except sin) in fear of him since he is her lord/master/head.

https://www.christforums.org/main/debate/theological-debate/24670-debate-a-christian-wife

Ooh, thank you! I won't have time for anything but C.S. Lewis till the weekend, but I'll certainly take a look at it then! That's definitely my type of thing. :)
 
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Yep! Well, I skipped Luke and went straight to John, but I'll backtrack once I pull myself out of apologetics. :)

Are you a theologian? You certainly don't strike me as a layperson!
Hi Silmarien, I'am a born again believer.. Many in the visible Church scoff at being born again. The difference is that I was called by the word in a Spiritual calling while listening to a preached. It was not the preacher, but the Scripture truth he was preaching and the Holy Spirit saying come. Being born again is Spiritual and supernatural by fiat . Until men can see what they really are, they can not understand salvation or Grace. Every man that refuses to look at his (not someone else s) human nature, and claims to be a mature Christian is noticeable by the addition of added works of their own effort in order to be saved. Here are two things to look for in false teachers. Adding self effort to the work of Christ and denying the deity of Christ (Son of God) John 3:1-21.; 1 John 4:1-6.

Christ in us
Douglas Summers
 

Silmarien

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If you have some free time, I suggest you check out a debate:
Topic: A Christian wife is to obey her husband in all things (except sin) in fear of him since he is her lord/master/head.

https://www.christforums.org/main/debate/theological-debate/24670-debate-a-christian-wife

I ended up finding some time to read it after all! Have you seen some of the controversies over the translation "help meet"? The feminists would deny that Genesis implied a subordinate status in Hebrew at all! There's a claim out there that the Hebrew could be translated as "equal power" instead of "help meet." There was also an 11th century Rabbi who translated it as "help against" and said that a wife would help her husband if he were worthy and be against him otherwise. http://www.godswordtowomen.org/ezerkenegdo.htm

There is an Elephant in the Church that I pray you get past. Liberal Christian is an Oxymoron. You see, repent means to turn from or to go the or another way. When I was a Lost Sinner I was a very Liberal Man. I did what made me feel good and better than half of those first forty-five years, I was a Diest because God had spoken to me in Vietnam.

Hey, I think my last comment may have come out a bit harsher than I intended. If so, I'm sorry.

All the anti-liberal rhetoric around here gets frustrating, especially when it involves stereotypes that are completely off base for you. I'm kind of the ivory tower intelligentsia sort, so I run in activist circles. I've got tons of problems to deal with, but I don't think caring about civil rights is one of them!

And being liberal at 35 doesn't mean you have no brain. :tongue If you don't want to knock some sense into the university students, there might be a problem, but there are more sophisticated views out there!

Hi Silmarien, I'am a born again believer.. Many in the visible Church scoff at being born again.

They do? I don't think I've seen that term used disparagingly except by secular folk!
 

atpollard

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I ended up finding some time to read it after all! Have you seen some of the controversies over the translation "help meet"? The feminists would deny that Genesis implied a subordinate status in Hebrew at all! There's a claim out there that the Hebrew could be translated as "equal power" instead of "help meet." There was also an 11th century Rabbi who translated it as "help against" and said that a wife would help her husband if he were worthy and be against him otherwise. http://www.godswordtowomen.org/ezerkenegdo.htm
Apparently Paul (and the Holy Spirit if you believe that Scripture is divinely inspired) misunderstood as well, because the New Testament uses the Marriage relationship as an example of Jesus and his Church ... unless those same feminists believe that God should submit to men and women in an equal partnership as well?

Ephesians 5:22-24 "Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord. For the husband is the head of the wife as Christ is the head of the church, his body, of which he is the Savior. Now as the church submits to Christ, so also wives should submit to their husbands in everything." [NIV]

[PS: Isn't that denial EXACTLY what God's curse said women would do? They would resist the headship of the man, just as mankind naturally (sinfully) resists the headship of God.]

"God's Word to Women" (the website you linked to) also ignores the basic facts of the story and the context. Read Genesis 2 and 3 for yourself.

Did God create man and woman at the same time?
Did God give the command not to eat the fruit when both the man and woman were present?
After they ate, did God summon both the man and woman before Him to ask what have you done?

Or rather, did God create the man first, give the instructions to the man and confront the man first when those instructions were not obeyed. That sounds like "responsibility" to me. If only one of two people is held responsible, then the story is not one of absolute equality and 'co-responsibility'.

It is not about what I want, it is about what God has said. He said what he said. Wishing will not change that. So the question then becomes, how can a man lead like Christ led? That is a thought that should make your knees shake more than a little.
 
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"Hi Silmarien, I'am a born again believer.. Many in the visible Church scoff at being born again."
They do? I don't think I've seen that term used disparagingly except by secular folk!

They do not always come out and say it, but they scoff at our admission of Spiritual rebirth. Why do we preach, "you must be born again",....Because, You must be born again! (John 3:3, 5)

In the visible church there are, Baptist, with many different beliefs,(Free will, Southern, Independent) all with different doctrines. Also there is C of C, Catholicism, Methodist, Presbyterian, Church of God and so on. Then you have cults such as The Mormons, JW's, Scientology, etc.
All of these visible churches are not compatible with their own different doctrines (not known by God).

But their is a sanctified (Holy) Church that is joined to Christ by His Spirit in us through rebirth (John Chapter 3). If you were to give a proper name to The Church, it would be, "The Church of God in Jesus Christ at (location)"
 

Silmarien

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Apparently Paul (and the Holy Spirit if you believe that Scripture is divinely inspired) misunderstood as well, because the New Testament uses the Marriage relationship as an example of Jesus and his Church ... unless those same feminists believe that God should submit to men and women in an equal partnership as well?

I would actually be very interested in knowing how those feminists handle Paul. For myself, I'm with the crowd that says that being born into an extremely patriarchal society, it absolutely makes sense that Paul would not consider alternative interpretations. I also strongly believe that if the Gospel account of the Resurrection is true, it was no mistake that the women were at the tomb first. That is a powerful statement, and carries far more authority for me than Paul's social theory.

[PS: Isn't that denial EXACTLY what God's curse said women would do? They would resist the headship of the man, just as mankind naturally (sinfully) resists the headship of God.]
Where are you getting that women resist the headship of men because of the curse? All I see is this:

Genesis 3:16 "Yet your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you."

...which indicates that man's desire to rule over women comes from the curse. Even if the subordinate position of women is natural, it's pretty clear to me that it was twisted into something very ugly afterwards.

Did God create man and woman at the same time? Actually, yes. Hebrew appears to follow the same rule as English--the word "man" (ha'adam) often means humankind rather than meaning a male individual. Adam does not refer to himself as "male" (ish) until after Eve exists as well, which would make sense--the concept of "male" is incoherent if "female" does not exist as well. Of course, there is also Genesis 1:27. "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them." Clearly as ideas, they show up simultaneously before the story of the Garden of Eden comes into play at all. Perhaps Adam initially was both--the word translated as "rib" is apparently "side" in Hebrew.

Did God give the command not to eat the fruit when both the man and woman were present? Possibly. Eve was aware of the prohibition, so either 1) she has Adam's memories from when she was still a part of him, 2) God told her separately afterwards, or 3) Adam told her. I'm not sure why we would assume the third option; it seems the least likely.

After they ate, did God summon both the man and woman before Him to ask what have you done?
To the extent that He summoned anyone ("Where are you?" is a pretty inoccuous question), he summons "ha'adam," which is again not necessarily a gender specific word. God also only explicitly drives "ha'adam" from the Garden in Genesis 3:22-24, but it would be absurd to say the exile was not for both of them.

Or rather, did God create the man first, give the instructions to the man and confront the man first when those instructions were not obeyed. That sounds like "responsibility" to me. If only one of two people is held responsible, then the story is not one of absolute equality and 'co-responsibility'.

Adam is more than just "man" as opposed to "woman." Eve's part of the curse falls only upon women, but Adam's falls upon everyone--women have most certainly had to toil alongside men for all of human history. Gender specific language is almost never used to refer to Adam in Hebrew, so I'm disinclined to view him as proof of male authority.

It is not about what I want, it is about what God has said. He said what he said. Wishing will not change that. So the question then becomes, how can a man lead like Christ led? That is a thought that should make your knees shake more than a little.

How so? If you're right, I don't have to worry about leading one way or the other, haha. I do agree that God said what He said in Genesis, except that I'd point out that He made nothing at all explicit before the curse itself. You can infer whatever you want, but I wouldn't conflate interpretation with divine will.

In the visible church there are, Baptist, with many different beliefs,(Free will, Southern, Independent) all with different doctrines. Also there is C of C, Catholicism, Methodist, Presbyterian, Church of God and so on. Then you have cults such as The Mormons, JW's, Scientology, etc.

Scientology is certainly a crazy little cult, but it's not remotely Christian! :tongue
 

eddif

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John 7:38 KJV
He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water.

To get rivers flowing out of mountains you need water there:
Cold rocks with cloud banks yields sweating rocks.
Mist on cold rocks / ground yields trickles.
Snow and ice prepare for spring thaw.
Showers yield creeks.
Rain downpour yields rivers, when combined with all the rest.

John 7:38 KJV
But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.)

John 16:8 KJV
And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
.........
Our mind may take us to:
II Chronicles 7:14 KJV
If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

A temporary fix
But
Confessing sins will take us to Jesus and the new birth.
And
The Holy Spirit will cause the rivers to flow.

Mississippi folks just are strange.
eddif
 
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