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Author Topic:   Spiritual Death is Not Biblical
Peg
Member (Idle past 3160 days)
Posts: 2703
From: melbourne, australia
Joined: 11-22-2008


Message 256 of 281 (535797)
11-18-2009 1:52 AM
Reply to: Message 245 by Jazzns
11-17-2009 11:12 AM


Re: Daniel
Jazzns writes:

Making him by definition NOT a king. That is why you change the definition.

is a ruler not a king?

A king is a sovereign who has authority to rule over others

Was Belshazzar a sovereign? Yes, his mother was Queen, his father was king, his grandfather was king

that makes him a king.

Jazzns writes:

You conviently ignored my main point which is that you cannot prove that a 2nd century Daniel did not know about Belshazzar.

explain how a 5th century historian did not know about belshazzar, but a 2nd century writer did

And you are simply assuming that Daniel was written in the 2nd century but can you prove that?

I dont think you can. Can you explain why the scrolls of Daniel were in circulation when Alexander the Great conqured jerusalem in the 3rd century? According the the Jewish historian Josephus, Alexander visited the Temple in Jerusalem and was shown the scroll of Daniel which contained information about him.

Please explain how this can be and provide proof.

Jazzns writes:

If you want to discuss this in more detail perhaps we should take it to a different thread. I'll try to re-find my references to the Babylonian lineage that I mentioned in my previous post.

a new thread is a good idea. Its an interesting topic to discuss...it would be intersting to see both sides of evidence for late and early authorship.

OFF TOPIC - Please Do Not Respond to this message by continuing in this vein.
AdminPD

Edited by AdminPD, : Off Topic


This message is a reply to:
 Message 245 by Jazzns, posted 11-17-2009 11:12 AM Jazzns has not yet responded

    
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1688 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 257 of 281 (535821)
11-18-2009 6:12 AM
Reply to: Message 254 by Iblis
11-17-2009 10:13 PM


Impact vs Meaning
quote:
Wouldn't part of the appeal for using this phrase be the fact that it's a way of getting back behind our logical faculties and making an emotionally compelling argument? We can talk about alienation or bad tendencies or lack of self-control all day long without really waking up our audience, but when we start crooning about "speerachool DAYUTH" we can get them foaming pretty quick.
I agree the emotional impact of the phrase is probably more the point than any actual meaning to the phrase. The phrase is ambiguous enough to attach it to many different issues as we've seen in this thread.


"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
This message is a reply to:
 Message 254 by Iblis, posted 11-17-2009 10:13 PM Iblis has not yet responded

  
jaywill
Member (Idle past 172 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 258 of 281 (535822)
11-18-2009 6:35 AM
Reply to: Message 249 by ICANT
11-17-2009 1:07 PM


Re: Out of Death Into Life
Greetings ICANT,

jaywill writes:

"We know that we have passed out of death and into life because we love the brothers. He who does not love abides in death" (1 John 3:14)

What kind of "death" do you think John is writing about ?

ICANT:

I don't have to think because John tell's me himself.

John writes:
Revelation 20:14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death.

Everyone who has not been born again is already dead as they are under the penalty of the second death.

John writes:
3:18 He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

John declares those who have not believed ( 1. to think to be true, to be persuaded of, to credit, place confidence in a) of the thing believed 1. to credit, have confidence) the only begotten Son of God is CONDEMNED ALREADY. Therefore he is dead.

ICANT, while I agree with the proclaimation of Revelation 20:14 and John 3:18 these passages, I think, should not used to say there is no such thing as spiritual death.

It will not be easy for me to explain because I am not sure if you are regarding spiritual death to mean the annhilation or non-existence of the human spirit. You seem to emphasize that the human spirit is eternal.

Let me try to examine this closer with you. I will try to hit my target.

Firstly, 1 John 3:14 strictly speaking, is talking about the divine love being practiced as evidence that the brothers have passed out of death into life. This precludes that some Christian brothers could not act as brothers should act. They may be born again but not practicing the divine love. They are abiding in death.

John does not want the Christian brothers to abide in death.
In the same way Paul says to the Chrisians that for them to set their mind on their regenerated spirit is life and peace. But if they would be fleshy and set their mind upon the flesh, that is death.

Of course for the unbleliever to set the mind on the flesh, which is all he knows to do, is death. Yet even for the one who has been saved eternally, to be immature, and to set his mind on the old nature instead of his regenerated spirit is likewise death.

Regardless of who you are then:

"For the mind set on the flesh is death ..." (Rom. 8:6a)

The one who has received Jesus Christ has an alternative way to live, to set the mind on her regenerated spirit. So ...

"For the mind set on the flesh is death, BUT ... the mind set on the spirit is life and peace."

Likewise John exhorts the Christian brothers, for whom the question of eternal redemption has already been settled - the evidence of them having passed out of death into life is the practice of the divine love.

The divine love issues from the divine life. The one without the divine life cannot practice the divine love. He of course may love very much, his wife, children, friends. And atheists or unbeleivers of course can love. But it is not the divine love in the divine fellowship of the childen of God for one another.

John exhorts the disciples that to restrain this divine love from flowing out "shut up your bowls" is to abide in death. This has to be spiritual death. The disciple has spiritual life in his spirit. But he does not abide in his spirit or set his mind on his spirit. He still lives practically like an unbeliever and he abides in spiritual death.

In this passage Paul speaks of judicial redemption as in being forgiven or reconciled to God positionally, PLUS a salvation in life "organically":

"For if we being enemies, were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more we will be saved in His life, having been reconciled." (Rom. 5:10)

As to the past the Christian has been reconciled to God through Christ's death. Judicially and positionally he has been justified. Yet dispositionally he will experience something "much more". That is to be dispositionally "saved in His life".

His having been reconciled judicially is the bases upon which the "much more" salvation in the realm of Christ's life is carried out.

Practically speaking, to the Apostle John warns that the Christian should practice the flowing out of the divine love or they may be abiding in spiritual death. They neglect the "much more" salvation in the sphere of Christ being lived out as life.

I have two questions for you and I will answer both. If you disagree you can give your answer.

1) Will the physical body we have die? Yes, Thus we have physical death.

I agree.


2) Will a Spirit die? No all spirits are eternal. Thus there can be no spiritual death.

Here you capitalize Spirit which indicates to me the Spirit of God, ie. the Holy Spirit probably. The "eternal Spirit" does not die. He cannot be annhilated for He is God. He cannot pass into non-existence because He has immortality. He always was and always will be.

From that you say all spirits are eternal, therefore there can be no spiritual death.

This may be difficult to handle in one post. But to say that the human spirit cannot be annhilated "die" or cannot pass into non-existence "die" does not preclude that their can be no spiritual death.

For John to say that the Christian disciple who does not practice the divine love is to abide in death, does not mean that his spirit is actually non-existent. It means practically speaking he is not using his spirit even though it is regenerated with divine life.

To set the mind on the flesh is not to cause the regenerated spirit to actually become annhilated or non-exist. But practically speaking the one setting his mind on the flesh fills his living with spiritual death.


There can be and is the second death which is eternal separation from God in a lake of fire where those there are tormented for eternity.

That is true. And the unbeliever's entire being - spirit and soul and body perish there forever. His being there is not to pass out of existence or be annhilated though it is to be destroyed. So this would really be death in all manners of speaking. It would include spiritual death forever.

It does not mean however, that the man "dies" in the sense of pass out of existence, be non-existence. This meaning is applied by Annhilationalists or Universalists. Jehovah's Witnesses and Christian Science also teaches annhilation into non-existence.

I do not use spiritual death to mean the annhilation into non-existence of the human spirit. And John could not mean that the disciples of Christ who do not love abide in actual non-existence in any regard.


jaywill writes:
And what kind of "death" have those who practice the Christian love have possibly passed out of ?

Those who have been born again are not now or ever will be under the penalty of the second death. Glory to God.

Those born again will never perish forever. And it is a glory to God. However, a Christian may be "hurt" of the second death (Revelation 2:11) temporarily in some particular cases.

And First John 3:14 is talking more about the flow of divine love as evidence of having passed out of death and into life. The brothers not practicing the divine love are abiding in death. They are not abiding in the lake of fire. They are abiding in a spiritual deadness which they ought to leave behind as they learn to set the mind on the regenerated human spirit.

Please note that John 3:14 at least does not say "We know we have passed out of death into life because we have been born again." The emphasis here is not being born again but living practically in that new life. The evidence of such living is the flow of the divine love.

Furthermore, the Christian may have passed out from under eternal condemantion yet practically be abiding in an immature backslidden spiritual death. That is why both John and Paul exhort us believers so.

John does not use the concept of spiritual death to indicate the annhilation or non-existence of the human spirit.

I welcome your comments.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 249 by ICANT, posted 11-17-2009 1:07 PM ICANT has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 265 by ICANT, posted 11-18-2009 2:20 PM jaywill has responded

  
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1688 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 259 of 281 (535823)
11-18-2009 6:41 AM
Reply to: Message 253 by jaywill
11-17-2009 9:00 PM


Re: Spiritual Death
quote:
I already gave you the Ezekiel passages about a heart of stone being replaced by a heart of flesh.

A heart of stone implies a dead and unresponsive non living heart. A heart of flesh in the word picture represents a living heart.

"I will also give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you; and I will take away the HEART OF STONE out of your flesh, and I will give you a HEART OF FLESH."

And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and My ordinances you will keep." (Ezek. 36:26,27)


Unfortunately for your explanation, a non-living heart means the person is physically dead. The figurative use of stone isn't depicting a physically dead person.

The other problem is that we've already found that the word death in the phrase spiritual death has nothing to do with the straight meaning of the word death. So equating the meaning of stone with non-living doesn't equate the verse with spiritual death. The contrast of stone and flesh deals with pliability and this isn't just my take on the verse. Any teaching I've heard or commentary I've read depicts the stone as symbolizing hardness and therefore not impressible.

Until you come up with a concrete definition, your reasoning for this verse doesn't fly with what we've discovered about the definition so far.


"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
This message is a reply to:
 Message 253 by jaywill, posted 11-17-2009 9:00 PM jaywill has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 260 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 10:34 AM purpledawn has responded
 Message 262 by Dawn Bertot, posted 11-18-2009 11:50 AM purpledawn has responded

  
jaywill
Member (Idle past 172 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 260 of 281 (535838)
11-18-2009 10:34 AM
Reply to: Message 259 by purpledawn
11-18-2009 6:41 AM


Re: Spiritual Death
Unfortunately for your explanation, a non-living heart means the person is physically dead. The figurative use of stone isn't depicting a physically dead person.

No it does not.

The flesh is alive but the psychological and spiritual heart is of stone, not alive.

In this word picture -
Flesh = living.
Stone = NOT LIVING.

In order to MATCH the living flesh God want to implant a CORRESPONDING "flesh" psychological and spiritual HEART to REPLACE the stone one.

I do not interpret this as God doing a physical heart transplant surgery. I regard this as a SPIRITUAL and psychological allegory.


The other problem is that we've already found that the word death in the phrase spiritual death has nothing to do with the straight meaning of the word death. So equating the meaning of stone with non-living doesn't equate the verse with spiritual death.

In the word picture the natural spiritual and pyschological cannot cause the people to walk in God's ways. It is unresponsive, as stone and not spiritually alive to God.

In order to get them to walk in God's ways truly, God must implant His Spirit into them. This promise to put His Spirit into them involves them receiving a new spirit and a new heart.

That new heart will not be of stone - dead to God's will. It will be "of flesh" a metaphor for LIVING and vital. God's Spirit entering into man will implant a livingness and spiritual vitality in contrast to the spiritual death the people have from their natural birth.


The contrast of stone and flesh deals with pliability and this isn't just my take on the verse. Any teaching I've heard or commentary I've read depicts the stone as symbolizing hardness and therefore not impressible.

A heart of stone is indeed a non-pliable heart, a stubburn and hardened heart. And I will not split hairs with you.

However, the Old Testament uses stone to convey death in 1 Samuel 25:37,38.

"And in the morning, when the wine had left Nabal, his wife told him these things. And his heart died within him, and he became like a stone.

And about ten days latter Jehovah struck Nabal, and he died."

To convey "death" the Old Testament used stone. So it is appropriate to understand a psychological and spiritual heart of stone to be a spiritually dead person.

Having said that I would hasten to add that it does not mean a HOPELESS person. Even the person who realizes within themselves that there is this kind of "death" between them and God is entirely more hopefull than one who is totally unaware of his state.

To sense spiritual death is infinitely better than to be oblivious for there is hope for repentence toward God.

To be aware of the spiritual death within or aware of a hardened and unpliable heart towards God is a good thing if it leads to repentance and enlivening.


Until you come up with a concrete definition, your reasoning for this verse doesn't fly with what we've discovered about the definition so far.

I can define what I mean. It will not be exhaustive. And it will not be a total theological systemization of the whole bible. If it is not defined then how can you be so certain that it is not biblical.

And where are your plain words in the OT that it does not exist ?

As far as I am concerned you have no case to say that the phrase "spiritual death" is unbiblical. And I know too many expositors who would not take your contention seriously for a moment.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 259 by purpledawn, posted 11-18-2009 6:41 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 264 by purpledawn, posted 11-18-2009 2:14 PM jaywill has not yet responded

  
jaywill
Member (Idle past 172 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 261 of 281 (535843)
11-18-2009 11:12 AM
Reply to: Message 247 by purpledawn
11-17-2009 11:31 AM


Re: Paul and Spiritual Death
If you are unable to restate in non-figurative language what is stated in figurative language, there is no way for a reader to understand how you understand the figurative language.

Perhaps you should speak just for yourself.


Statements like this tell me you either don't really understand figurative language or you don't want to discuss Paul seriously.

That is interesting because to me you are the one who does not want to be serious about what is read in many places in the bible.


The phrase spiritual death is not in the Bible.

I already submitted that.


You have yet to define what spiritual in the phrase is referring to. Augustine seems to be referring to disposition when referring to the nature of man. No, that doesn't mean that every use of the word spirit refers to disposition.

But spiritual death I am mostly refering to the damaged human spirit of man. Or I am refering to not living by the regenerated spirit of man.

Man has been damaged by the fall of Adam. God created man "very good". That "very good" creation suffered damage at the sin of Adam.

Man was invaded with some kind of foreign element. He was really "poisoned" and the human spirit was made comatose, deadened, spiritually deadened.

This truth is more clearly developed in the New Testament in conjunction with the salvation of God being more developed ALSO in the New Testament.

But I say the concept of spiritual death is not altogether absent from the OT. Your rejection of my examples, I regard as unwarranted.

And it is equally perculiar to me that you are so cock sure that something not defined absolutely is unbiblical.


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
That is right that I have not yet labored on a rigorous definition of spiritual death.

In this post I gave you something to work with.
I anticipate your objections. And on a case by case basis I may deal with these expected objections.


A definition is needed to support your position that I've jumped the gun.

Why do you not also say that a definition is needed to support your insistence that "spiritual death" is unbiblical then ?

Do you think this comes across as open minded or objective about the subject ? So I use the phrase "jump the gun". You're eager to announce something as unbiblical.

I considered your title hype attraction grabbing - "Come argue with me Fundies."

Aside from that, I gave examples that even without and exhaustive definition, spiritual death of a sort certainly can be understood as being conveyed in Ezekiel 36.

You want a definition so you can go after inconsistencies. But I don't think total theological systemization of is possible on many subjects of the Bible.


quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
When Paul writes:

"But she who gives herself to pleasure is dead while living" (1 Tim. 5:6)

do you think he is not refering to "spiritual death" ?

Do you wish to dismiss this as just some "creative writing". It may depend on how seriously you take the apostles exhortation. He is speaking about unruly Christian sisters in the church life who instead of giving themselves to hope in God are consummed with being given over to pleasures.

In principle that same thing refers to the Christian brothers. Now here in this passage is one of the issues of definition. I believe he is talking about people who have been regenerated. Their human spirit has been quickened with the Holy Spirit. Yet their minds are set on the old nature, the fallen flesh. Remember Paul wrote:

"The mind set on the flesh is DEATH, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace" (Rom.8:6)

I sympathize with you somewhat if you find this confusing. But when I see you fight against the teaching, my sympathy turns into caution because you are not humble to receive the Bible's utterances.

If you do not see in these passages a "spiritual death" and more importantly a spiritual divine life, it may be that someday you will appreciate it.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

"Dead while living" is figurative language. Your explanation of the verse shows that "dead" refers to immorality or wrong behavior, which is what I've said before concerning Paul's figurative use of the word dead or death.

This complaint could be that you do not appreciate to what extent Christ is life and God is life. You have no contrast to compare experiencially to say that this behavior is really death spiritually.

Could it be that you have not "pass out of death into life" therefore you do not take spiritual death seriously ?

If immorality were the only manifestation of this death then I doubt that John would have included the case of Nicodemus, a "good" man by our standards. Regardless he needed to be born spiritually.

The unruly and immoral sister Paul is speaking of may have been born again, but she is [not] living by that seed of life but by the old fallen nature. So he says she is dead while living.

Spiritual death is implied because physically and psychologically she is alive.

You think being born again means to simply turn over a new leaf, so to speak, don't you?

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 247 by purpledawn, posted 11-17-2009 11:31 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 266 by ICANT, posted 11-18-2009 2:45 PM jaywill has not yet responded
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Dawn Bertot
Member
Posts: 3571
Joined: 11-23-2007


Message 262 of 281 (535848)
11-18-2009 11:50 AM
Reply to: Message 259 by purpledawn
11-18-2009 6:41 AM


Re: Spiritual Death
To Jaywill PD writes:
Statements like this tell me you either don't really understand figurative language or you don't want to discuss Paul seriously.

PD quotes and follows this principle.

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

Dont mean to interupt here just a quick question. You insist for the plain and simple reading and interpretation of the text which is fine.

However, a couple of points and questions. You and I started this discussion and you have insisted that the death spoken of in the Gen text is physical only, correct? yet you speak and write and imply that Pauls words are to be taken creatively, that he speaks about death as an illustration of disobdience, what gives you that right. What gives you the right to interpret Pauls words about sin and death, specifically death in some other fashion besides physical. You seem to be violating the plain and simple meaning of Paul in the statement.

IOW, whether Paul is talking about Physical death or spiritual, what right do you have to make his words a creative sense of disobedience.

Here is another way you violate your own principles and the plain and simple reading of the text. Paul says plainly that sin and death entered the world by one man, sin being disobedience and death as at least physical (even if you do not believe it is spiritual), because you have no right according to your own principles to insist otherwise.

Yet you insist that God commuted this sentence, the sentence of PHYSICAL DEATH, which indirectly implies you believe it WAS physical death, BUT NOW WATCH THIS, the commute is no where STATED IN THE PLAIN AND SIMPLE TEXT. Where do you get the lisence (given your method of interpretation) to insist the sentence of death was commuted, it is not stated directly in the text, you have to ASSUME this, not knowing if some sort of death, either progressivley physically or spiritual death had not actually had taken place. your reading into the plain and simple text, are you not.

You dont seem to go by your own principles of interpretation

EAM

Edited by EMA, : No reason given.

Edited by EMA, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 259 by purpledawn, posted 11-18-2009 6:41 AM purpledawn has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 267 by purpledawn, posted 11-18-2009 3:11 PM Dawn Bertot has not yet responded

    
jaywill
Member (Idle past 172 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 263 of 281 (535860)
11-18-2009 12:57 PM


The Apostle Paul writes:

"Therefore He says, Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you." (Eph. 5:14)

This sounds like his quotation of either a poem or a song known to the Ephesian Christians to whom he writes. But what is the context of this exhortation to "arise from the dead"? It is a spiritual walk. Now observe the context of the quotation:

"For this you realize, knowing that every fornicator or unclean person or greedy person (who is an idolator) has no inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.

Therefore do not be partakers with them;

For you were once darkness but are now light in the Lord; walk as children of light (For the fruit of the light [consists] in all goodness and righteousness and truth),

Proving what is well pleasing to the Lord.

And do not participate in the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather even reprove them.

For the things which are done by them in secret it is shameful even to speak of.

But all things which are reproved are made manifest by the light; for everything that makes manifest is light.

THEREFORE HE SAYS, AWAKE, SLEEPER, AND ARISE FROM THE DEAD, and Christ will shine on you." (Eph. 5:5-14)

In Paul's usage of this sentence "THE DEAD" is applied to those walking in the named sins and spiritual darkness.

"Spiritual death" is indicated in the exhortation - "Awake, sleeper, and arise from the dead ..." In contrast Jesus Christ is spiritual life to enlighten and enliven them.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.

Edited by jaywill, : No reason given.


  
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1688 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 264 of 281 (535873)
11-18-2009 2:14 PM
Reply to: Message 260 by jaywill
11-18-2009 10:34 AM


Re: Spiritual Death
quote:
The flesh is alive but the psychological and spiritual heart is of stone, not alive.

In this word picture -
Flesh = living.
Stone = NOT LIVING.

In order to MATCH the living flesh God want to implant a CORRESPONDING "flesh" psychological and spiritual HEART to REPLACE the stone one.

I do not interpret this as God doing a physical heart transplant surgery. I regard this as a SPIRITUAL and psychological allegory.


Again, you're going to have to stop using figurative language in your explanations. You obviously aren't talking about the physical heart that pumps blood. You also aren't using the word living as the blood pumping, breathing body or non-living to mean the opposite.

Heart in the OT usually referred to the mind. So I agree the writer is referring to the mind. Flesh = pliable or compliant and stone = not pliable or stubborn. Life and death aren't part of the verse.

quote:
In the word picture the natural spiritual and pyschological cannot cause the people to walk in God's ways. It is unresponsive, as stone and not spiritually alive to God.
Are you talking about three different things here: natural, spiritual, and psychological? Today, psychological = mind and rational soul (spiritual) = mind.

quote:
That new heart will not be of stone - dead to God's will. It will be "of flesh" a metaphor for LIVING and vital. God's Spirit entering into man will implant a livingness and spiritual vitality in contrast to the spiritual death the people have from their natural birth.
Now you're making up words. Spiritual death from natural birth is a later concept. Probably Augustine again. The born sinful concept wasn't in the OT. I don't recall it being in the NT either.

Yes, the verse says God will make their mind pliable so that when he gives them a new disposition, they will not fight the change. No figurative life or death is mentioned in this verse. Are you saying spiritual death is stubbornness?

quote:
A heart of stone is indeed a non-pliable heart, a stubburn and hardened heart. And I will not split hairs with you.

However, the Old Testament uses stone to convey death in 1 Samuel 25:37,38.

"And in the morning, when the wine had left Nabal, his wife told him these things. And his heart died within him, and he became like a stone.

And about ten days latter Jehovah struck Nabal, and he died."

To convey "death" the Old Testament used stone. So it is appropriate to understand a psychological and spiritual heart of stone to be a spiritually dead person.


Actually the word died conveyed death, the word stone just conveyed that he was motionless like a stone.

I'm sure some writer can use the word stone figuratively to mean death, but it didn't in the Ezekiel verse or the verse in Samuel. How one writer uses a word figuratively doesn't automatically impact how another writer uses the word. It depends on the use in the sentence. In these two cases the use of the word stone is playing off the properties of a stone: rigid, motionless, unyielding, etc.

quote:
Having said that I would hasten to add that it does not mean a HOPELESS person. Even the person who realizes within themselves that there is this kind of "death" between them and God is entirely more hopefull than one who is totally unaware of his state.

To sense spiritual death is infinitely better than to be oblivious for there is hope for repentence toward God.

To be aware of the spiritual death within or aware of a hardened and unpliable heart towards God is a good thing if it leads to repentance and enlivening.


You really can't explain this without using the figurative language?

quote:
And where are your plain words in the OT that it does not exist ?
Well you haven't clearly stated what "it" is yet.

The phrase exists, but it is a post biblical creation. My guess is still with Augustine. He used the phrase in defense of original sin to describe man's nature corrupted by sin.

Augustine vs. Pelagius
When Adam failed to obey God and partook of that tree, along with his wife Eve; he disobeyed God and thus failed the test. As a result Adam died spiritually, that is, his nature was corrupted by sin. Whereas before, his nature was holy and desired God, now his nature was corrupted by sin and enslaved to sin.

The doctrine of original sin is a later concept and not supported by the OT.

The doctrine of original sin was first developed in second-century Bishop of Lyon Irenaeus's struggle against Gnosticism.[2] The Greek Fathers emphasized the cosmic dimension of the Fall, namely that since Adam human beings are born into a fallen world, but held fast to belief that man, though fallen, is free.[2] It was in the West that precise definition of the doctrine arose.[2] Augustine of Hippo taught that original sin was physically transmitted from parent to child through the concupiscence (roughly, lust) that accompanied sexual reproduction, weakening the will and making humanity a massa damnata[2] (mass of perdition, condemned crowd). In Augustine's view (termed "Realism"), all of humanity was really present in Adam when he sinned, and therefore all have sinned. Original sin, according to Augustine, consists of the guilt of Adam which all humans inherit. As sinners, humans are utterly depraved in nature, lack the freedom to do good, and cannot respond to the will of God without divine grace.


"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
This message is a reply to:
 Message 260 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 10:34 AM jaywill has not yet responded

  
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 265 of 281 (535875)
11-18-2009 2:20 PM
Reply to: Message 258 by jaywill
11-18-2009 6:35 AM


Re: Out of Death Into Life
Hi jaywill,

jaywill writes:

ICANT, while I agree with the proclaimation of Revelation 20:14 and John 3:18 these passages, I think, should not used to say there is no such thing as spiritual death.

It will not be easy for me to explain because I am not sure if you are regarding spiritual death to mean the annihilation or non-existence of the human spirit. You seem to emphasize that the human spirit is eternal.

A physical death is the ceasing of that body to exist.

Spiritual death would be the ceasing of that spirit to exist.

Eternal separation from God in the lake of fire is called the second death.

Everyone who has not been born again possesses this second death in the present and anytime that ever comes to be present. They are condemned already John 3:18

Nowhere in the Bible is this second death refereed to as spiritual death. I do know that most preachers refer to it as spiritual death.
I don't, simply because that infers the spirit will be annihilated.

jaywill writes:

Those born again will never perish forever. And it is a glory to God. However, a Christian may be "hurt" of the second death (Revelation 2:11) temporarily in some particular cases.

Revelation 2:8 - 2:11 is addressed to the messenger of the church in Smyrna.

Verse 10 tells of the devil casting some into prison, being tried and there would be tribulation and for them to remain faithful unto death.

Verse 11 says the one who is victorious will not be hurt of the second death.

I have no problem with that.

But your statement "However, a Christian may be "hurt" of the second death (Revelation 2:11) temporarily in some particular cases."

Is not supported by this text as it does not read:

Rev 2:11 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that is not victorious shall be hurt of the second death temporally.

jaywill writes:

Firstly, 1 John 3:14 strictly speaking, is talking about the divine love being practiced as evidence that the brothers have passed out of death into life. This precludes that some Christian brothers could not act as brothers should act. They may be born again but not practicing the divine love. They are abiding in death.

John simply says if a person claims to be following Christ and do not love the brethren he is a liar and has never been born again.

jaywill writes:

"For the mind set on the flesh is death ..." (Rom. 8:6a)
The one who has received Jesus Christ has an alternative way to live, to set the mind on her regenerated spirit. So ...

"For the mind set on the flesh is death, BUT ... the mind set on the spirit is life and peace."

In the 8th chapter of Romans Paul makes it clear that the born again person is not condemned just as John put forth in John 3:18. Romans 8:1 says:

quote:
[There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.

Paul declares those who are born again do not walk after the flesh but after the Spirit.

Jesus declared the same thing in Jhn 10:27 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:"

jaywill writes:

Furthermore, the Christian may have passed out from under eternal condemantion


He can't be cast into the lake of fire which is the second death.

jaywill writes:

yet practically be abiding in an immature backslidden spiritual death.

How can he/she be spiritually dead as their spirit is sealed by the Holy Spirit of God who can commit no sin?

quote:
Eph 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.

You seem to be putting forth that the sacrifice of Calvary is not enough to give a person eternal life.

jaywill writes:

John does not use the concept of spiritual death to indicate the annhilation or non-existence of the human spirit.

John does not use the concept of spiritual death for any reason, as he simply does not use it at all.

As far as John is concerned a person has either passed from death unto life (been born again).

OR

That person is condemned already and is dead period never having been made alive by the Holy Spirit of God.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 258 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 6:35 AM jaywill has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 268 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 4:13 PM ICANT has responded

    
ICANT
Member
Posts: 6187
From: SSC
Joined: 03-12-2007


Message 266 of 281 (535879)
11-18-2009 2:45 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by jaywill
11-18-2009 11:12 AM


Re: Spiritual Death
Hi jaywill,

jaywill writes:

Man has been damaged by the fall of Adam. God created man "very good". That "very good" creation suffered damage at the sin of Adam.

Man was invaded with some kind of foreign element. He was really "poisoned" and the human spirit was made comatose, deadened, spiritually deadened.

Mankind was not invaded or poisoned.

Mankind died when the first man disobeyed God and came to know good and evil.

This was the exact moment all mankind became condemned to the second death that John talks about in John 3:18:

quote:
He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.

From that moment on Calvary was necessary. No one has ever received eternal life or will ever receive eternal life without the sheading of the blood of Calvary.

God Bless,


"John 5:39 (KJS) Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."
This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 11:12 AM jaywill has not yet responded

    
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1688 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 267 of 281 (535884)
11-18-2009 3:11 PM
Reply to: Message 262 by Dawn Bertot
11-18-2009 11:50 AM


Peshat Again
quote:
PD quotes and follows this principle.
"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
The quote is humor and not part of the discussion. Just as the title and subtitle are not the discussion or argument. It's all those words in between that make up the argument/discussion.

quote:
IOW, whether Paul is talking about Physical death or spiritual, what right do you have to make his words a creative sense of disobedience.
Fascinating that you think I alone determine what Paul means. This may come as a surprise to you, but there are many Christian articles dealing with Paul's writings and the personifications he uses. There are also books. I read a lot and I read fast. When I use insights from others, I usually provide links.

PaRDeS
Note that within the p'shat you can find several types of language, including figurative, symbolic and allegorical. The following generic guidelines can be used to determine if a passage is figurative and therefore figurative even in its p'shat:

1. When an inanimate object is used to describe a living being, the statement is figurative. Example: Isaiah 5:7 - For the vineyard of the Lord of hosts is the house of Israel, and the men of Judah his pleasant plant; and he looked for judgment, but behold oppression; for righteousness, but behold a cry.

2. When life and action are attributed to an inanimate object the statement is figurative. Example: Zechariah 5:1-3 - Then I turned, and lifted up my eyes, and looked, and behold a flying scroll. And he said to me, What do you see? And I answered, I see a flying scroll; its length is twenty cubits, and its width ten cubits. And he said to me, This is the curse that goes out over the face of the whole earth; for everyone who steals shall be cut off henceforth, according to it; and everyone who swears falsely shall be cut off henceforth, according to it.

3. When an expression is out of character with the thing described, the statement is figurative. Example: Psalm 17:8 - Keep me as the apple of the eye, hide me under the shadow of your wings ...

If you feel that Paul is using the word to mean physical death, then make your case as it pertains to the topic, but this isn't a discussion about Paul's technique.

quote:
Yet you insist that God commuted this sentence, the sentence of PHYSICAL DEATH, which indirectly implies you believe it WAS physical death, BUT NOW WATCH THIS, the commute is no where STATED IN THE PLAIN AND SIMPLE TEXT. Where do you get the lisence (given your method of interpretation) to insist the sentence of death was commuted, it is not stated directly in the text, you have to ASSUME this, not knowing if some sort of death, either progressivley physically or spiritual death had not actually had taken place. your reading into the plain and simple text, are you not.

I gave support for my position in Message 149 from the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia. I didn't invent the idea.

Death
1. Conception of Sin and Death:
According to Gen 2:17, God gave to man, created in His own image, the command not to eat of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, and added thereto the warning, "in the day that thou eatest thereof, thou shalt surely die." Though not exclusively, reference is certainly made here in the first place to bodily death. Yet because death by no means came upon Adam and Eve on the day of their transgression, but took place hundreds of years later, the expression, "in the day that," must be conceived in a wider sense, or the delay of death must be attributed to the entering-in of mercy (Gen 3:15).

Just as when we read any other book, certain things are understood without being specifically stated. Mercy can be understood by the action in the story. Spiritual death cannot be understood from the simple reading without applying the post-Biblical concepts of original sin and spiritual death. How would the original audience or a child hearing the story for the first time, understand those concepts?


"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
This message is a reply to:
 Message 262 by Dawn Bertot, posted 11-18-2009 11:50 AM Dawn Bertot has not yet responded

  
jaywill
Member (Idle past 172 days)
Posts: 4519
From: VA USA
Joined: 12-05-2005


Message 268 of 281 (535894)
11-18-2009 4:13 PM
Reply to: Message 265 by ICANT
11-18-2009 2:20 PM


Re: Out of Death Into Life
Eternal separation from God in the lake of fire is called the second death.

Everyone who has not been born again possesses this second death in the present and anytime that ever comes to be present. They are condemned already John 3:18

ICANT I'll have to think about some of these finer points. But I will comment a little as I go along.

You are saying from John 3:18 that the condemned unbeliever "possesses" the second death even before being cast into the second death.

In some sense I can see that. In some sense perhaps not. Let me see where you want to take it.


Nowhere in the Bible is this second death refereed to as spiritual death.

I have not written that one must wait until being cast into such lake of fire to experience spiritual death. I have shown that such a spiritual death is spoken of in terms of unbelievers who are unregenerated and believers who are regenerated but live by setting their minds on the flesh and not the regenerated spirit.

I think those cast into that eternal perdition must experience this "death" of not properly setting the mind forever. I would understand that as a perpetual spiritual death.

It is started in the natural life outside of being cast into the lake of fire. It is continued after being so cast into that lake of fire.


I do know that most preachers refer to it as spiritual death.
I don't, simply because that infers the spirit will be annihilated.

Okay. But you are speaking with me now. So I will respond to the points which refer to what I have said.

I understand you here to be saying that to be cast into the second death, the lake of fire is to have the human spirit annhilated, pass out of existence. If that is what you mean I think I would not agree.

The reason I would not agree will be stated. A full defense may not follow in this post.

The CONSCIENCE of man is in the human spirit. And I think the Scripture indicates that the conscience of the loss continues to convict them.

To prove this I think I would do two things:

1.) Show how the human spirit in the Bible has a function which we would identify as those things which the human conscience does. I think I can do this.

2.) Show how the conscience continues to bother the lost unbelievers even after they have been cast into the second death.

I think I can do both of these. Should I? Do you think it is sufficiently related to our subject here?


jaywill writes:
Those born again will never perish forever. And it is a glory to God. However, a Christian may be "hurt" of the second death (Revelation 2:11) temporarily in some particular cases.

Revelation 2:8 - 2:11 is addressed to the messenger of the church in Smyrna.

Verse 10 tells of the devil casting some into prison, being tried and there would be tribulation and for them to remain faithful unto death.

Verse 11 says the one who is victorious will not be hurt of the second death.

I have no problem with that.

But your statement "However, a Christian may be "hurt" of the second death (Revelation 2:11) temporarily in some particular cases."

Is not supported by this text as it does not read:

Rev 2:11 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; He that is not victorious shall be hurt of the second death temporally.

Think about this ICANT. This letter is written to a church. Now man may be sloppy or mistaken and include unbelievers in a "church". But Jesus Christ would not be sloppy or mistaken. He knows who is a part of His church and who is not. Do you agree?

So, if Jesus is speaking to the church He is speaking to believers for whom the question of eternal redemption has already been settled. No non-believers are a part of the church in Smyrna.

For all the seven churches a reward for overcoming is promised. This particular reward to the overcomers in the church in Smyrna is spoken of in somewhat negative terms -

ie. "If you overcome I will NOT do something." This strongly implies that that there is the possibility that this negative something COULD happen if they do NOT overcome.

"He who overcomes shall by no means be hurt of the second death."

The reward is that something will NOT happen. Therefore that thing COULD happen. The converse of the promise reward is logical. He who does not overcome this particular trial will be hurt of the second death. I don't think anyone can get away from this logic.

I use to think that the Lord Jesus was being too hard on the church in Smyrna. Then I realized that because He is so sufficient and so ABLE to sustain them, the promise is so strict. If He were not so faithful and so able to uphold them then it would be too strict and unfair.

The overcomers had to overcome their particular assigned ten day trial. If they were faithful by Christ's all sufficient grace to overcome they would not be hurt of the second death.

Since they are eternally redeemed, any "hurt" of the second death should be temporary and not eternal. And the Holy Spirit uses the word "hurt", I think, to indicate something short of perishing forever.

I know that this is not the thought of many mainstream evangelical Christians. But we should realize that Jesus, as the Righteous Judge has a very large scope of lattitude with which to deal with His children. Just like a worldly Judge has a very wide range of things she may do to discipline someone, so Christ has a wide range of things He can do to perfect His believers.

One of the mistakes we Christians make is to not realize how wide a range of possibilities could be used by Christ the Lord to deal with His people. This is not the milk or the word or even the meat of the word. This is the hard bones of the word of God.

He who overcomes shall NOT be hurt by the second death. I submit to you that some Christians will be temporarily hurt by the second death after the second coming of Christ.


jaywill writes:
Firstly, 1 John 3:14 strictly speaking, is talking about the divine love being practiced as evidence that the brothers have passed out of death into life. This precludes that some Christian brothers could not act as brothers should act. They may be born again but not practicing the divine love. They are abiding in death.

John simply says if a person claims to be following Christ and do not love the brethren he is a liar and has never been born again.

Please indicate exactly which verse you are here refering to. Is the term "born again" used in that verse?

ICANT, I think we have to be realistic. I know and probably you know Christians who have been born again, who carry grudges or resentments with them. They may not walk in love and may not repent though they are born again. They may carry those unloving attitudes with them to the grave.

Sometimes you or I may not forgive a brother right away. Huh ?

So I think it is a mistake to think that all Christians that are stuck in not loving the brothers are false Christians. Now some MAY be false brothers. But check your experience.

Some genuine brothers may not be walking in the love. In 1:10 John says that if we say we have not sinned we lie.

But if it is impossible for a Christian brother to not walk in love then the Apostle John would not exhort them to do so. The exhortation to love proves that the disciples could not be walking in that love.

But show me the verse you mean saying he lies and is not "born again".

jaywill writes:
"For the mind set on the flesh is death ..." (Rom. 8:6a)
The one who has received Jesus Christ has an alternative way to live, to set the mind on her regenerated spirit. So ...

"For the mind set on the flesh is death, BUT ... the mind set on the spirit is life and peace."

In the 8th chapter of Romans Paul makes it clear that the born again person is not condemned just as John put forth in John 3:18. Romans 8:1 says:

quote:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
[There is] therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ICANT, the condemnation spoken of in Romans 8:1 refers to the SELF CONDEMNATION elaborated on in the previous chapter 7:

"Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from the body of this death?

Thanks be to God, through Jesus Christ our Lord! ... There is now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus for the law of the Spirit of life has freed me in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and of death."

Chapter 7 of Romans elaborates Paul's self condemnation at not being able to carry out the good that he knows. In his members is another law driving him to commit the things which he hates and does not delight in his moral mind and in his agreement with the law of God. This failure to live as he ought to live causes him to feel wretched and self condemned.

The self condemnation is broken by his discovery that he can walk by the Spirit in his regenerated spirit. A more powerful law of the Spirit of life sets him free from the law of sin and death. Therefore he feels gloriously free and no longer has self condemnation.

The freedom from God condemnation through Justification by Faith has already been elaborated on in earlier chapters of the book.


Paul declares those who are born again do not walk after the flesh but after the Spirit.

They should. But he exhorts them that they WOULD.

The fact of the matter is that we NEED such exhortation because every born again Christian does NOT walk after the Spirit. Sometimes you and I do not walk after the Spirit. Am I right ?

So we too need to be exhorted to walk thus. This is to be normal. And to overcome in Revelation 2 and 3 is also only to be normal. The promises to the overcomers is not promises to super spiritual people of some elite. They are promises of reward to the disciples to be NORMAL. They are not called to live ABOVE the standard. They are called to live AT the standard.

It is normal that we should overcome. It is not typical that Christians do. What is normal is not average. Too many are adnormal. Sometime you and I are not normal in our enjoyment of Christ's grace. So the New Testament is filled with exhortations because it is not automatic that we overcome just because we are born again - justified from perdition.


Jesus declared the same thing in Jhn 10:27 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me:"

jaywill writes:
Furthermore, the Christian may have passed out from under eternal condemantion

He can't be cast into the lake of fire which is the second death.

Can a Christian in the church in Smyrna be hurt of the second death ?

Do unbelievers constitute a new testament church in any regard ?
I will continue latter.

Prove all things. Hold fast to that which is good.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 265 by ICANT, posted 11-18-2009 2:20 PM ICANT has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 271 by ICANT, posted 11-18-2009 10:13 PM jaywill has responded

  
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 1688 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


Message 269 of 281 (535913)
11-18-2009 4:53 PM
Reply to: Message 261 by jaywill
11-18-2009 11:12 AM


Meaning of Spiritual Death
quote:
But spiritual death I am mostly refering to the damaged human spirit of man. Or I am refering to not living by the regenerated spirit of man.
What do you mean by spirit?

quote:
Why do you not also say that a definition is needed to support your insistence that "spiritual death" is unbiblical then ?
I'm taking the phrase at face value, mainly because people keep attaching it to the words or situations dealing with death.

At face value the idea of the phrase is not biblical. In Monism, the spirit (an animating or vital principle held to give life to physical organisms) cannot die apart from the body. The OT does not support the idea of the spirit (an animating or vital principle held to give life to physical organisms) dying separate from the body. (Message 19, Message 212)

My contention was and still is that the Old Testament prophets and writers of the Torah (first five books) in the Jewish Bible do not present a concept of “spiritual death”. I feel that the spiritual death concept is a later concept influenced by Greek philosophers.

We have discovered that the doctrine of spiritual death is a post-Biblical creation, most likely by Augustine and influenced by Greek views on the division of body and soul. Even Augustine's use of the word refers to the corrupted human nature due to original sin and not the actual meaning of the word death.

The NT shows the influence of the Greek rational soul.

Please explain how the words translated as death/dead/die in the OT now mean spiritual death (sinful nature or wrong disposition) as opposed to physical death or actual wrong behavior despite what the author wrote?


"Peshat is what I say and derash is what you say." --Nehama Leibowitz
This message is a reply to:
 Message 261 by jaywill, posted 11-18-2009 11:12 AM jaywill has not yet responded

  
Iblis
Member (Idle past 2126 days)
Posts: 663
Joined: 11-17-2005


Message 270 of 281 (535954)
11-18-2009 9:40 PM
Reply to: Message 246 by jaywill
11-17-2009 11:12 AM


of death / in death Re: harrowing Re: cherubim
While I work on your issue in Peter's writing I remind you.

John says that the believers who love one another have passed out of death and into life:

"We know that we have passed out of DEATH into LIFE because we love the brothers. He who does not love abides in DEATH." (1 John 3:14)

I'm happy to get to this, now that we've done some of the groundwork. First, let's look at the next verse to get an idea of the context

First John 3:15 writes:

Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer: and ye know that no murderer hath eternal life abiding in him.

Again we find John commenting on a doctrine that already exists in the church. In this case it's one of the loggia or Dominical Sayings, something which would have a great priority among believers.

Let's look at the original saying as Matthew gives it

Matthew 5:21,22 writes:

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment:
But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

This is normally preached in conjunction with the parallel teaching on adultery that follows its exposition in the Sermon

Matthew 5:27,28 writes:

Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery:
But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

In other words, just as lust is "heart" adultery, so also hatred must be understood as "heart" murder. This is the doctrine that John is expounding in this passage. Notice that he doesn't say "dead" in 3:14, but rather "of death" and "in death." Hatred is the same sin as murder, though perhaps to a lesser degree. The intention is the same, whether it is carried out or not; and the effect on the sinner is qualitatively, if not quantitately, similar.

We see this in real life a lot. Just as murderers feel guilty, repress their guilt, fear discovery, and may react to attempts to reach them with violence; so also people repressing hatred are likely to suffer guilt, fear, and uncontrollable reactions. It often happens that someone who hates in their heart without acting on it will feel a terrible irrational sense of guilt when the object of their hate suffers an unrelated death. "I killed them! I wanted them dead! It's my fault!" is the sort of thing we tend to hear, often about a parent or spouse.

But John is clearly going beyond this, he's developing further doctrine in addition to the plain reading of the saying. He seems to be postulating something like the "culture of death" we tend to talk about in modern philosophy. That makes this verse a great choice on your part to find some basis for the tentative ideas you are expressing about what "spiritual death" might mean.

The kill-and-be-killed cycle of crime and punishment, atrocity and vendetta, striving and failing, that produces such intellectual nausea in us in modern times isn't new, though we may hope to have some new thoughts about it. The feeling of alienation and impending doom that it inspires in us is exactly what Jimi Hendrix is singing about, and the philosophers are canting over, and the street preachers are appealing to to get our attention, souls, money, or whatever it is they might be trying to acquire.

This is a close cognate to the Buddhist idea of the chain of causation (nidana) which characterizes our material reality as a cycle of suffering (samsara). One popular poetic expression of this quandary is as a "Wheel of Horrors" (karma) which we must somehow find a way to stop, cease contributing to, and escape from.

Robert Anton Wilson writes:

Then, returning from school one afternoon, Luna was beaten and robbed by a gang of black kids. She was weeping and badly frightened when she arrived home, and her Father was shaken by the unfairness of it happening to her, such a gentle, ethereal child. In the midst of consoling her, the Father wandered emotionally and began denouncing the idea of Karma. Luna was beaten, he said, not for her sins, but for the sins of several centuries of slavers and racists, most of whom had never themselves suffered for those sins. "Karma is a blind machine," he said. "The effects of evil go on and on but they don't necessarily come back on those who start the evil." Then Father got back on the track and said some more relevant and consoling things.

The next day Luna was her usual sunny and cheerful self, just like the Light in her paintings. "I'm glad you're feeling better," the Father said finally.

"I stopped the wheel of Karma," she said. "All the bad energy is with the kids who beat me up. I'm not holding any of it."

And she wasn't. The bad energy had entirely passed by, and there was no anger or fear in her. I never saw her show any hostility to blacks after the beating, any more than before.

The Father fell in love with her all over again. And he understood what the metaphor of the wheel of Karma really symbolizes and what it means to stop the wheel.


http://www.deepleafproductions.com/...y/texts/raw-karma.html

* * *

You may have noticed that I'm not the least bit shy about using other texts to help show the meaning of the one we are touching on. This may seem like a violation of the principle of the "plain reading" that we are trying to adhere to, but it isn't. And it isn't just that these texts are closer together in time, similar to the way the Law and the Prophets might be seen as being. Purpledawn may be allowing us to use Zechariah to explain Genesis or whatever, but that's just a mercy, it's not good use of the peshat principle.

The reason I'm doing it is because it seems clear to me that the passages in question, which are written before John, and which he either had available to him or at least was intimately familiar with the doctrines expressed in, are what John is talking about. In other words, it's no good using Paul to explain Adam until we are sure what Adam is about on its own. Then we can see whether Paul is saying something new which was hidden from us in the text (sod), or simply appealing to what Moses or one of the prophets has already told us.

This is why I refer to Peter in conjuction with the earlier passage from John. When John talks about the gospel already having been preached among the dead, and some of them being raised back to life in the process, he is making reference to something the early church believed was real and actual, not metaphorical, something that had genuinely happened in literal terms and many people had witnessed.

He may be saying something more; he may be saying we are a lot like those dead patriarchs, we may have to wait and be patient, we may have to be faithful and believe like Abraham, and have that belief be the sum of our righteousness for right now. He may be saying that our life in this world is a lot like the "Hades" that Noah and David were waiting in until they got harrowed the hell out of there, and that we will too.

But he can't be saying anything less. He can't be saying it didn't happen, it's only a metaphor, in short, that the plain meaning of the doctrine is false and only the hidden things he is revealing now are true. Can he? Sure, some weak brother who doesn't want to rationally believe in the harrowing of hell might still get some value out of John's further exposition. But that's just a mercy; it doesn't mean it didn't happen does it?

The principle of peshat is not just an interesting critical tool for understanding ancient documents, it's an absolutely essential approach to the scriptures if we want to show proper respect to the original authors and their inspiration. Moses had something important to say, and he said it. He doesn't need Paul to make his message clear for us. Paul also has something to say; and if what he is talking about is what Moses said, then we ought to take a good look at what Moses said so what Paul says can build on that properly.

This goes back to what I was saying about the cherubim. Sure, in a perfect world we would all know every word in our language, but if we don't, we can use a dictionary. In a perfect church, we might all have the loggia and related doctrines memorized; but if we don't, we can look them up. But we can't look them up in some book that didn't exist at the time the author was writing, or the doctrines of men are liable to confuse us. This is why I started off by talking about griffins, they are a derivative of the Akkadian term kiribu which cherubim also descends from, and which predates or is contemporary with times as early even as Moses.

Linguistic scholar Roland De Vaux wrote that the term cherubim is cognate with the Assyrian term karabu, Akkadian term kuribu, and Babylonian term karabu; the Assyrian term means 'great, mighty', but the Akkadian and Babylonian cognates mean 'propitious, blessed'.[2][5] In some regions the Assyro-Babylonian term came to refer in particular to spirits which served the gods, in particular to the shedu (human-headed winged bulls)[6]; According to the authors of the Jewish Encyclopedia, Assyrians sometimes referred to these as kirubu, a term grammatically related to karabu.[2]

According to Peak's Commentary on the Bible, a number of scholars have proposed that cherubim were originally a version of the shedu, protective deities sometimes found as pairs of colossal statues either side of objects to be protected, such as doorways.[7][8] However, although the shedu were popular in Mesopotamia, archaeological remains from the Levant suggest that they were quite rare in the immediate vicinity of the Israelites.[9] The related Lammasu (human-headed winged lions — to which the sphinx is similar in appearance),[dubious – discuss] on the other hand, were the most popular winged-creature in Phoenician art, and so most scholars suspect that Cherubim were originally a form of Lammasu.[10] In particular, in a scene reminiscent of Ezekiel's dream, the Megiddo Ivories — ivory carvings found at Megiddo (which became a major Israelite city) — depict an unknown king being carried on his throne by hybrid winged-creatures.[11] According to archaeologist Israel Finkelstein, the Israelites arose as a subculture in Canaanite society, and hence regarded it is as only natural for the Israelites to continue using Canaanite protective deities.[12]

According to the editors of the 1906 Jewish Encyclopedia, the Lammasu was originally depicted as having a king's head, a lion's body, and an eagle's wings, but due to the artistic beauty of the wings, these rapidly became the most prominent part in imagery [2]; wings later came to be bestowed on men, thus forming the stereotypical image of an angel.[13] The griffin — a similar creature but with an eagle's head rather than that of a king — has also been proposed as an origin, arising in Israelite culture as a result of Hittite usage of griffins (rather than being depicted as aggressive beasts, Hittite depictions show them seated calmly, as if guarding),[14] and a few scholars have proposed that griffin may be cognate to cherubim, but Lammasu were significantly more important in Levantine culture, and thus more likely to be the origin.[2]


http://en.wikipedia.org/...n_contemporary_biblical_criticism
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