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Author Topic:   Because The Bible Tells Me So
Phat
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Posts: 10230
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.3


Message 1 of 111 (387627)
03-01-2007 4:02 PM


In this thread, I want to examine some of the philosophiesof the Bible that many people accept as inerrant and examine whether or not they are worthy of consideration.(add by edit: Also theologically as opposed to philosophically! :rolleyes:

Some examples:

  • Consider others better than yourself.

  • Turn the other cheek

  • The wisdom of the world is foolishness to God.

  • Whatever you do unto the least of these you do to me. (Jesus talking)

    Any scriptures are open for discussion.

    Faith/Belief?

    Edited by Phat, : emphasis on theology rather than philosophy


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    Message 2 of 111 (387639)
    03-01-2007 5:20 PM


    Thread moved here from the Proposed New Topics forum.
      
    kuresu
    Member (Idle past 126 days)
    Posts: 2544
    From: boulder, colorado
    Joined: 03-24-2006


    Message 3 of 111 (387644)
    03-01-2007 5:37 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    you know, I thought the whole inerrancy thing was about the accuracy of the bible, not in it's moral message. So things like the flood, the genesis account, and angels would be under the umbrella of inerrancy. Not moral messages, because those don't really effect the accuracy of the bible in terms of history or what existed.

    And seeing as how the whole bible has several different moralities (thou shalt not kill; kill your enemy and rape their women), it would be royally stupid to claim inerrancy of moral messages. granted, some will try.


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    ringo
    Member
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    From: frozen wasteland
    Joined: 03-23-2005
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    Message 4 of 111 (387647)
    03-01-2007 6:00 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    Phat writes:

    The wisdom of the world is foolishness to God.

    I consider that a worthless buzz-phrase.

    How can we possibly know what is foolishness to God? The wisdom of the world is all we have.


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    Taz
    Member (Idle past 904 days)
    Posts: 5069
    From: Zerus
    Joined: 07-18-2006


    Message 5 of 111 (387664)
    03-01-2007 7:37 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    Phat writes:

    I want to examine some of the philosophies of the Bible that many people accept as inerrant...


    I'm curious, phat. Just about every fundamentalist here thinks that the extermination of the Cannanites (men and women, young and old) was just and right. Just about every fundamentalist here thinks homosexuality is evil and that gay people should not be allowed the same benefits as the rest of us. Just about every fundamentalist here thinks that scientists are dumbasses and that a quick google search allows you to speak authoritively on disciplines that take people decades to learn.

    I fail to see the significance of this thread.

    In fact, we don't even have to look at current issues. Just look at some of our more popular examples from the past. Every time in our history when society was facing a change, like women's suffrage, civil rights, abolition, etc., the fundamentalists always said that the end of the world was coming and if women, blacks, etc. were allowed to vote god would bring his/her/its wrath upon this nation and rain down fire and brimstone.

    What good is all this biblical moral high ground bullshit if the followers of this biblical moral high ground bullshit keep trying to oppress other people with their biblical moral high ground bullshit?


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    Doddy
    Member (Idle past 3522 days)
    Posts: 563
    From: Brisbane, Australia
    Joined: 01-04-2007


    Message 6 of 111 (387677)
    03-01-2007 9:10 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    Consider others better than yourself

    Yes, Mark 9:35 does go that way.

    quote:
    If any man desire to be first, the same shall be last of all, and servant of all.

    But then equality among all is promoted, such as in Mark 12:31

    quote:
    Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

    This doesn't indicate considering other better, but merely equal. If you did love your neighbor more than yourself, you would be breaking this commandment.

    Then, we have the idea of considering other worse than yourself, such as in 1 Cor 16:22

    quote:
    If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha.

    Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't anathema mean banished or cursed? How can you banish or curse someone, if you wouldn't want that on yourself? Surely this would be considering another to be worse than yourself?

    Turn the other cheek

    Completely useless strategy in game theory. Doesn't work - you get royally screwed. However, I can't see it contradicted anywhere in the New Testament.

    The wisdom of the world is foolishness to God

    Yes, 1 Cor 3:18-19:

    quote:
    Let no man deceive himself. If any man among you seemeth to be wise in this world, let him become a fool, that he may be wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.

    This means then, that those philosophers and scientists we see debating creation (on both sides mind you) are fools.

    But in Ephesians 5:15, it says this:

    quote:
    See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise.

    And Psalms 5:5 says this:

    quote:
    The foolish shall not stand in thy sight.

    So, if "wise in the way of the world = foolish", then "wise in the way of the world = bad", so Christians should not be going to school and getting degrees. Much like Bertrand Russell said: ""So far as I can remember, there is not one word in the Gospels in praise of intelligence."

    Whatever you do unto the least of these you do to me

    Well yes, I can't see this contradicted any more than the first one you gave (in that banishing non-believers isn't nice), but it does also have some problems with the cruelty of the OT.

    Anyway, you said I can have other scriptures, so I'd like to discuss the inerrancy of these two scriptures

    quote:
    2 Thessalonians 3:6
    "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly..."

    2 Thessalonians 3:14-15
    "And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother."


    How does one 'admonish as a brother', without keeping company and with withdrawing? To 'keep company' is to be friends with and to withdraw means to remove yourself from their presence but, even though Jesus kept company with sinners, Christians must somehow admonish the unbelievers or bad Christians, without being their friend or even going near them. How, exactly?


    "And, lo, a great beast did stand before me, having seven heads, and on each head were there seven mouths, and in each mouth were there seventy times seven teeth. For truly there were seven times seven times seven times seventy teeth, meaning there were. . . okay, carry the three, adding twenty. . . plus that extra tooth on the third mouth of the sixth head. . . Well, there were indeed a great many teeth" - The Revelation of St. Bryce the Long-Winded

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    Jon
    Inactive Member


    Message 7 of 111 (387681)
    03-01-2007 10:48 PM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    Why can't we discuss slavery, rape, theft, murder...?
    This message is a reply to:
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    Yohuchanan562
    Junior Member (Idle past 3848 days)
    Posts: 2
    From: Spring City, TN, 37381, USA
    Joined: 03-01-2007


    Message 8 of 111 (387701)
    03-02-2007 2:04 AM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    Shalom All,
    Shalom All,

    Does anyone see the correlation between Psalms 13 & 14 and Mattithyahu 7:13-14 or is it just me?

    Shalom & Ahava,

    John E562

    Mat 7:13 “Enter in through the narrow gate! Because the gate is wide – and the way is broad – that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter in through it.

    Mat 7:14 “Because the gate is narrow and the way is hard pressed1 which leads to life, and there are few who find it. Footnote: 1Or the way is afflicted.

    Psa 13:1 How long would You forget me, O יהוה? Forever? How long would You hide Your face from me?

    Psa 13:2 How long would I take counsel in my being, Grief in my heart day by day? How long would my enemy be exalted over me?

    Psa 13:3 Look! Answer me, O יהוה my Elohim; Enlighten my eyes, Lest I sleep in death;

    Psa 13:4 Lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed against him,” Lest my adversaries rejoice when I am moved.

    Psa 13:5 But I have trusted in Your kindness; My heart rejoices in Your deliverance.

    Psa 13:6 I sing to יהוה, Because He has been good to me.

    Psa 14:1 The fool has said in his heart, “There is no יהוה.” They have done corruptly, They have done an abominable deed, There is no one who does good.

    Psa 14:2 יהוה looked down from the heavens on the sons of mankind, To see if there is a wise one, seeking יהוה.

    Psa 14:3 They have all turned aside, They have together become filthy; No one is doing good, not even one.

    Psa 14:4 Have all the workers of wickedness no knowledge, Who eat up my people as they eat bread, And do not call on יהוה?

    Psa 14:5 There they are in great fear, For יהוה is with the generation of the righteous.

    Psa 14:6 You would put to shame the counsel of the poor, But יהוה is his refuge.

    Psa 14:7 O that the deliverance of Yisra’ĕl Would be given out of Tsiyon! When יהוה turns back the captivity of His people, Let Ya’aqob rejoice, let Yisra’ĕl be glad.


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    Phat
    Member
    Posts: 10230
    From: Denver,Colorado USA
    Joined: 12-30-2003
    Member Rating: 1.3


    Message 9 of 111 (387717)
    03-02-2007 7:34 AM
    Reply to: Message 6 by Doddy
    03-01-2007 9:10 PM


    Topic Synopsis
    Kuresu writes:

    seeing as how the whole bible has several different moralities (thou shalt not kill; kill your enemy and rape their women), it would be royally stupid to claim inerrancy of moral messages.

    I agree. I am not saying that the Bible is Inerrant.
    Here is an example of what I define to be a Biblical truism: Prov 3:5--

    Trust in the LORD with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;

    I realize that I am approaching the Bible from the perspective of how some would say....a giant quote-mine! ;)

    Ringo writes:

    How can we possibly know what is foolishness to God? The wisdom of the world is all we have.

    Good point, Ringo. I have always maintained that some folks believe that the source of all human knowledge is human derived while others of us believe that the source of wisdom is God-derived...but you are correct in pointing out that we could never prove it since it is evident that we are human! :rolleyes:

    From the standpoint of this thread, the Bible is being discussed as a source of philosophy. A fundamentalist may believe the book to be inerrant while a liberal critically thinking person may view the book as simply a collection of writings.

    My stance in this thread is that while the book is not strictly innerrant, it is a source of wisdom and philosophy for many people. Given that this is so, I want to argue the position of why certain Biblically quote mined catch-phrases are used.

    Are these pearls of wisdom...uttered by Jesus Christ and by supposedly spiritually enlightened Biblical authors such as David (Psalms) Solomon (Proverbs) and Saul aka Paul (Many New Testament Books) relevant as a philosophy and as a world view in modern life?

    Tazmanian Devil writes:

    I fail to see the significance of this thread.

    While you may be correct in that there are many fundamentalists who simply do not think, I feel that by discussing Biblical Quotes...be they taken out of context or not---will give us an opportunity to discuss why the quotes that we revere are revered by us.

    Tazmanian Devil writes:

    What good is all this biblical moral high ground bullshit if the followers of this biblical moral high ground bullshit keep trying to oppress other people with their biblical moral high ground bullshit?

    Good point, and it offers me the opportunity to use a mined quote in my defense. (BTW...I am not suggesting that by using Biblical Quotes I am in any way occupying a moral high ground!)
    NIV writes:

    Phil 2:3-- Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.

    This is IMHO a good bit of philosophy. A person can never get in too much trouble by being humble!

    Doddy writes:

    Anyway, you said I can have other scriptures, so I'd like to discuss the inerrancy of these two scriptures

    quote:
    2 Thessalonians 3:6
    "Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every brother that walketh disorderly..."

    2 Thessalonians 3:14-15
    "And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. Yet count him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother."


    How does one 'admonish as a brother', without keeping company and with withdrawing? To 'keep company' is to be friends with and to withdraw means to remove yourself from their presence but, even though Jesus kept company with sinners, Christians must somehow admonish the unbelievers or bad Christians, without being their friend or even going near them. How, exactly?

    Good example! The first quote suggests that Paul wanted the church to draw a distinction in behaviorism. As an example, I may have many rowdy friends who still love to smoke a dozen bongs and drink a case of beer. I may well go over and see them occasionally and show them as much love as I show to anyone in the "church". (I try not to be exclusivist!) If I were to sit around and do bongs with them, I would be angering my Holy Spouse! This is not an admonishment to any of you...it is just a personal thing with me...please understand.

    The second quote is keeping in line with Pauls discipline of the church and...the role of the church in regards to exclusivism. (Exclusivism is a topic unto itself! ;) )

    This brings up the opportunity for another quote! :D

    Jesus is praying in John 17. He mentions this in His prayer:

    NIV writes:

    John 17:14-15
    I have given them your word and the world has hated them, for they are not of the world any more than I am of the world. My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.

    This is another example of exclusivity. Jesus apparently is pointing out that there is a difference...internally and spiritually...between those whom He chose as Disciples and the rest of humanity. I am not nearly as much of an exclusioner as I used to be, but I have experienced times when I was walking in my tip-top behavior and considered myself in touch with Jesus mission. I could feel a difference between myself and many other everyday people that I encountered. (Again, this is another topic. Keyword: Exclusivity. )

    Perhaps we are showing how a staunch adherence to Fundamentalist Biblical philosophy promotes a sense of privilege and exclusivity in the church community. My question would then become: Well what do you expect us to do? Go around and let it all hang out...cussing and drinking and laughing at dirty jokes?

    Another Quote popped into my head as an answer:

    NIV writes:

    1 Peter 1:13-16-- As obedient children, do not conform to the evil desires you had when you lived in ignorance. But just as he who called you is holy, so be holy in all you do; for it is written: "Be holy, because I am holy."

    This seems like good advice as long as I don't get all uppity about it! I could see this philosophy as being of God. I mean, does He expect me to conform to my evil desires?

    Doddy, I know you understand the Bible better than most fundamentalists and that you have chosen to follow your own philosophy in life and not that of this book. And I know that because of this, you are not necessarily following your own "evil" desires just because you do not worship God.

    This could mean that

    NIV writes:

    Rom 1:20-- For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities-his eternal power and divine nature-have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.

    This quote presupposes that morality and the knowledge of right and wrong are imparted into all peoples hearts whether or not they are believers.

    Of course, there is also a contrasting scripture:

    NIV writes:

    Matt 15:18-20- But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these make a man 'unclean.' For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. These are what make a man 'unclean'; but eating with unwashed hands does not make him 'unclean.'"

    On the one hand, the book is telling us that all humanity has an innate awareness of right and wrong. On the other hand, Jesus is telling us that our heart is apparantly the source of it all.
    NIV writes:

    Luke 6:45- The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks.

    This seems to suggest that our behavior and intentions is what allows our heart to be filled with what we want it to be filled with.


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    Phat
    Member
    Posts: 10230
    From: Denver,Colorado USA
    Joined: 12-30-2003
    Member Rating: 1.3


    Message 10 of 111 (387719)
    03-02-2007 7:44 AM
    Reply to: Message 8 by Yohuchanan562
    03-02-2007 2:04 AM


    Re: Shalom All
    Welcome to EvC, Yohuchanan562! :) You must come from a church that really respects and revere the Lords name! Out of your list of scriptures, I had one jump out at me:

    NIV writes:

    Ps 14:2-3--

    2 The LORD looks down from heaven
    on the sons of men
    to see if there are any who understand,
    any who seek God.
    3 All have turned aside,
    they have together become corrupt;
    there is no one who does good,
    not even one.

    This one seems to mean that nobody does any real good in and of themselves...but that it is Gods Spirit within us that makes any good thing happen at all. Perhaps an atheist would take offense to this, but I am coming at it from the view of a-priori and a positive truth claim, anyway.

    I would maintain that a person could be in touch with God without even believing in Him.


    This message is a reply to:
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    Phat
    Member
    Posts: 10230
    From: Denver,Colorado USA
    Joined: 12-30-2003
    Member Rating: 1.3


    Message 11 of 111 (387720)
    03-02-2007 7:47 AM
    Reply to: Message 7 by Jon
    03-01-2007 10:48 PM


    The Daily News
    Jonicus writes:

    Why can't we discuss slavery, rape, theft, murder...?

    Don't you get enough of that in the daily world news? Yes, it is true that the Bible is chock full of it...but....what would be the point of discussing that philosophy? I am not advocating the Bible to be 100% inerrant, remember. I am simply bringing up quotes that I would be so inclined to follow philosophically.


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    crashfrog
    Inactive Member


    Message 12 of 111 (387734)
    03-02-2007 10:22 AM
    Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
    03-01-2007 4:02 PM


    The wisdom of the world is foolishness to God.

    Right. Well, that's exactly what you'd tell people if you were trying to get someone to believe something idiotic.

    "Oh, sure it sounds stupid that a guy could be executed by Romans and magically rise from the dead; that's the proof that it actually happened! Things that sound foolish are actually wisdom."


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    ringo
    Member
    Posts: 13968
    From: frozen wasteland
    Joined: 03-23-2005
    Member Rating: 1.7


    Message 13 of 111 (387740)
    03-02-2007 11:23 AM
    Reply to: Message 9 by Phat
    03-02-2007 7:34 AM


    Re: Topic Synopsis
    Phat writes:

    Are these pearls of wisdom...uttered by Jesus Christ and by supposedly spiritually enlightened Biblical authors such as David (Psalms) Solomon (Proverbs) and Saul aka Paul (Many New Testament Books) relevant as a philosophy and as a world view in modern life?

    That was my point: they are relevant only if they are relevant to us.

    It is not "good philosophy" to take dictation from some external entity (which might not even exist) or to accept the "wisdom" of people who have a vested interest in our obedience. Philosophy (love of knowledge) ought to be about doing our own thinking.

    That's not to say that we can't take "pearls of wisdom" as a starting point. But there's no excuse for using Bible quotes as The Answer™.


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    kuresu
    Member (Idle past 126 days)
    Posts: 2544
    From: boulder, colorado
    Joined: 03-24-2006


    Message 14 of 111 (387758)
    03-02-2007 2:27 PM
    Reply to: Message 9 by Phat
    03-02-2007 7:34 AM


    Re: Topic Synopsis
    a Biblical truism

    quote:
    Trust in the LORD with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;

    this doesn't count as a truism. A truism is something that, by definition, is true. A = A is a truism. The boy is red because he is red is a truism.

    I don't see how your quote counts as a truism--how is it so obviously true, self evidently true? I see A + B = ??. Not A = A.

    just a tiny nitpick.


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    purpledawn
    Member (Idle past 1070 days)
    Posts: 4453
    From: Indiana
    Joined: 04-25-2004


    Message 15 of 111 (387765)
    03-02-2007 3:37 PM
    Reply to: Message 9 by Phat
    03-02-2007 7:34 AM


    Truisms
    While I agree that the Bible contains ancient wisdom some of which still holds true today, but I wonder if people today really comprehend the wisdom. A penny saved is a penny earned; is pretty clear what is meant.

    Now take the verse you shared from Proverbs.

    Trust in Adonai with all your heart;
    do not rely on your own understanding. (Complete Jewish Bible)

    By itself what does that sentence say? Not what you've been told it says, but what does it really say?

    Trust Adonai for what? Don't rely on our own understanding of what?

    By itself the sentence doesn't really say anything specific. When we read the chapters and verses preceding that verse we see that the writer was concerned with right and wrong behavior.

    Look at the very beginning of Proverbs.

    1 The proverbs of Shlomo the son of David, king of Isra'el, 2 are for learning about wisdom and discipline; for understanding words expressing deep insight; 3 for gaining an intelligently disciplined life, doing what is right, just and fair; 4 for endowing with caution those who don't think and the young person with knowledge and discretion. 5 Someone who is already wise will hear and learn still more; someone who already understands will gain the ability to counsel well; 6 he will understand proverbs, obscure expressions, the sayings and riddles of the wise. (Complete Jewish Bible)

    Even though individuals tend to have their own sense of right and wrong, we are governed by laws of the society we live within and the laws of Moses were "corporate" laws for the Hebrews taught to each child through the generations.

    The problem with quote mining is that the original meaning can be lost and many alternative meanings can be applied to suit ones own purposes.

    Is it really a truism for individuals not to ever rely on their own sense of right and wrong? There are times when the government is wrong. Even though the Torah is the basis for the Jewish lifestyle, the Jewish community has still changed over time. Whose sense of right and wrong determines the change?


    "Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
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