04 January, 2007

A Conversation With Jacques

Jacques original post:

Precisely because Jesus threatens unbelievers with Hell in the NT, the Church used the Purgatory as a place where stillborns and people who died before Christ's coming go to be purified, along with those who died with venial sins.
http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12575a.htm#II

Christian doctrine fill in gaps and justify biblical contradictions. Were the "Word of God" perfect it wouldn't need an army of apologists through the ages.

I concur with you in that Hell was a place created by men and women. Religions were created by men and women too.

Even Jesus said "let the dead bury their dead" implying that there's no afterlife. But what does he say in Luke 23:43? Verily I say to thee, To-day with me thou shalt be in the paradise.'

Luke 16:23 and in the hades having lifted up his eyes, being in torments, he doth see Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom
After reading the above, to me is clear that Jesus believed in Hell as a place of eternal torment akin to the Hebrew Sheol and Greek Hades.

www.newadvent.org/cathen/05528b.htm
Death is not extinction; but Sheol, the underworld of the dead, in early Hebrew thought is not very different from the Babylonian Aralu or the Homeric Hades, except that Jahve is God even there.

Also, was Lazarus in heaven yet Jesus resurrected him to suffer earthly vicissitudes once again? Was Lazarus in hell? There's no soul at all and Jesus just reanimated Lazarus' body? Lazarus' soul was just asleep?

If even you know Carbon-14 is an unreliable method to measure geological ages past the million years mark, don't you think Paleogeologists and Paleontologists know better than you? They use radioactive isotopes with longer half lives other than those of carbon, such as uranium.

The Hebrew calendar counts since the Creation, we are now in 5767. 2000 years have passed since Christ's coming, 4707 years since Tyre's foundation (Herodotus). What do you think about dinosaur and hominid fossils? Did humans and animals change drastically in the 1060 years between the Creation and Tyre's foundation?
Was Earth created with fossils built-in?

Fossils are very scarce. Had the Flood happened there would be millions of fossils stacked in the same geological layer, everywhere.

There aren't any remains of animals foreign to the Middle East near the site where the Ark is supposed to have landed. There are no fossils of penguins, no kangaroos, no sloths, etc., near Mt. Ararat, Turkey.

Speaking of Turkey, the Black Sea flooding (The Mediterranean pouring its waters in the Black Sea basin) was not a global event. The Black Sea flooding was gradual, it didn't happen in just 40 days and 40 nights.

Daniel is as vague as Nostradamus in his prophecies. http://www.aboutbibleprophecy.com/daniel_2_32.htm

For example:
2. Daniel said that the head-of-gold empire would be followed by an empire symbolized by arms of silver. Christian scholars have often interpreted this to refer to the Medo-Persian empire which later conquered the Babylonian empire. The scholars say that the two arms refer to the two groups - the Medes and the Persians - who comprised the Medo-Persian empire.

Wow, amazing! The Medopersians were described with astonishing exactitude and detail! In this case the prophecy would have been valid had the author clearly written the name of that empire i.e. "Medo-Persian Empire"

According to Genesis 1:14-19 the stars, that gigantic balls of hydrogen that dwarf earth by several orders of magnitude, were made just to modify Earth's darkness a bit. Genesis also says that day, night, Earth, dirt, water, atmosphere, vegetation were created before stars. We now know stars predated Earth, and it seems logical since hydrogen is said to be the most abundant element in Universe and that helium and hard elements like iron, carbon, etc., are created by nuclear fusion in stars.

28 Comments:

Blogger Jason said...

Are you an atheist, agnostic or Catholic?

Purgatory
The Church invented a place called purgatory to offset their own teachings of evil people suffering for eternity.

Jesus never threatens anyone with spending eternity burning in hell and I ask you to provide verses explicitly saying as such. And since hell condemnation was instituted by Christ, surely he would also have set up purgatory. Verses for purgatory as well please. Bible only.

The Word of God
The Word of God is prefect because God is perfect. Also 2 Timothy 3:16-17 “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works.”

Note: “…the man of God may be perfect.” And this was long, long before any apologist got his greedy hands on things.

Luke 23:34
Where did Jesus spend the next three days? Dead. In a grave. Is the grave “paradise”? The thief did not request a place in heaven. He said, "Lord remember me when thou comest in thy kingdom." (vs. 42). The same hope was expressed by Paul (2 Tim. 4:1,8). The thief was requesting a place in a future event – the setting up of Christ’s kingdom, on earth.

How to explain the "But he said "today" problem"? One of the biggest issues with this verse is the placement of the comma. Since there was no punctuation in the earliest Greek manuscripts, it was left up to the translators to decide. Some got it right, others got it wrong. Given the Bible’s teachings of death, resurrection, and Christ’s kingdom, it's only natural the comma should go after “today”.

Luke 16:23
This is a parable. Unless you choose to take everything in this account as literal:
1. The passage speaks about bodies not souls;
2. There is a great gulf between Abraham and the rich man, yet they could both see and converse with each other (vs. 26);
3. Conversations can be carried on between those enjoying bliss and those agonizing in hell;
4. Lazarus went literally to Abraham's bosom, even though Abraham (as now) was unquestionably dead and without his reward. (Heb. 11:8, 13, 39, 40);
5. When you die, do you except to be carried to Abraham’s bosom? If so, what about all those good people who died before Abraham had a heavenly bosom to share?;
6. If you were being tormented in flames of fire, as the rich man was, would you request only a "drop of water" to quench your agony? Would not a jug or jar, or even a handful of water be more logical?;
7. Do you believe that the rich man was so stupid as to expect righteous Lazarus to leave the comfort of "Abraham's bosom" and spend time visiting the rich man in flames of fire?

No. There are too many absurdities to take this a literal teaching of hell as a place of eternal torment.

Death
Provide verses that explicitly show death isn’t extinction. "(Man's) breath goeth forth, he returneth to his earth; in that very day (moment) his thoughts perish" (Ps. 146:4).

Dating Methods
Radioactive isotopes don't tell too much at all about the age of sedimentary rocks (or fossils). The age date using this method would say nothing about when the rock was formed.

“The study of the evolution of modern humans from hominid ancestors is very speculative. Much of our present understanding is based on very little evidence. Only a few thousand hominid fossils have been discovered and most of these are incomplete. Sometimes anatomically similar bones collected over a wide area are assumed to be from the same individual, but they may actually be from different individuals.” (Advanced Biology by Michael Kent, Oxford University Press (2000))

On life-size models of Australopithecines in the American Museum of Natural History in New York: "The tableau is presented with such conviction that it is easy to overlook the consideration that virtually everything above the footprints is imaginary" (A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, Black Swan (2003)

“Bryson describes the fossil record for human ancestry as "unhelpful" (p. 554). "The total world archive of hominid and early human bones" could fit "into the back of a pickup truck." (A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson, Black Swan (2003)

Daniel's Prophecy
You misunderstand Daniel’s prophecy and have chosen not to read Scripture to verify your opinion. Read Chapter 8 & 11. As a neutral observer, state whether or not this is a “vague” prophecy:

• Daniel 8 – two empires are named: The Greeks (goat) and the Medes & Persians (ram)
• In the vision, the goat defeats the ram, after which the goat grows incredibly powerful
• The horn of the goat is broken and four smaller horns take its place (vs. 22)
• Another little horn comes up out of the four horns (vs 9)
• This little horn turns against the people of God and stops the daily sacrifice (vs. 9-11)
As history clearly shows, this is exactly how events unfolded:
• The Greeks, under Alexander the Great, destroyed the Medes & Persians
• After his untimely death, Alexander’s four generals divided his kingdom amongst themselves - Antigonus took Macedonia; Cassander, Asia Minor; Seleucius, Syria and the East; and Ptolemy, Egypt
• The Greek empire as THE world power lasted around 300 years. Halfway through this reign, Antiochus Epiphanes, a successor of Selecius, reared his ugly head.
• After declaring himself coregent, the Antiochus marched against Jerusalem, destroyed it and cruelly put to death many of its inhabitants
• Besides desecrating the sanctuary of the people of Israel and forbidding the daily sacrifice, Antiochus required that they give up the laws of the lord, God and practice the ways of the heathens (See Daniel 8:12)

Vague or precise?

January 05, 2007 12:01 AM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

We both agree in that Purgatory was invented by the Church. Anyway, consider this: http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/12575a.htm

This is a quick list made by entering the word hell in the search field of bible gateway http://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?quicksearch=hell&x=18&y=10

The Word of God
I think you're familiar with SAB, please refer to http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/abs/long.htm

The Bible is the Word of God because the Bible says it's so, nothing new there.

Luke 23:34
Christ's very existence is debatable. I should care less about where Jesus went after dying.

This is from Young's Literal Translation:

Luke 23:43 and Jesus said to him, `Verily I say to thee, To-day with me thou shalt be in the paradise.'

Luke 16:23
Either Jesus knew Greek mythology, or the Evangelists knew about Hades, or their source was Greek.(Refer to the synoptic problem, the two sources theory, and the Q document theory http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/q.html)

The 4 canonical Gospels were chosen arbitrarily by bishops from the 3rd and 4th centuries from amongst several writings.

This is the "mystic" reason Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons and Father of the Church wrote regarding the NT cannon:
Adversus Haereses, book 3, chapter 11 http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/0103311.htm
It is not possible that the Gospels can be either more or fewer in number than they are. For, since there are four zones of the world in which we live, and four principal winds, while the Church is scattered throughout all the world, and the "pillar and ground" of the Church is the Gospel and the spirit of life; it is fitting that she should have four pillars, breathing out immortality on every side, and vivifying men afresh….. . . The living creatures are quadriform, and the Gospel is quadriform, as is also the course followed by the Lord.
It seems Irenaeus never saw a starfish.

Eusebius (died 340), when sorting out the universally received books of the Canon, in distinction from those which some have questioned writes: "And here, among the first, must be placed the holy quaternion of the Gospels", while he ranks the "Gospel according to the Hebrews" among the second, that is, among the disputed writings (Hist. Eccl., III, xxv).

Clement of Alexandria (died about 220) and Tertullian (died 220) were familiar with our four Gospels, frequently quoting and commenting on them. The last-named writer speaks also of the Old Latin version known to himself and to his readers, and by so doing carries us back beyond his time.

The alleged Word of God is nothing but the work of men. None of these scriptures were written by Jesus himself, but by human “witnesses” years after Jesus alleged death.

On evil:
Christadelphian doctrine says man is the origin of evil. http://www.christadelphia.org/evil.htm but remember, the first human couple ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil set by God in the middle of Eden; before that they were naive, they didn’t know what death, good or evil meant, therefor they were easily deceived by the Serpent.

Also, Christadelphian doctrine conflicts with the words God himself uttered according to Isaiah 45:7 Forming light, and preparing darkness, Making peace, and preparing evil, I [am] Jehovah, doing all these things.'

On Radiometrics:
http://pubs.usgs.gov/gip/geotime/radiometric.html
A chemical element consists of atoms with a specific number of protons in their nuclei but different atomic weights owing to variations in the number of neutrons. Atoms of the same element with differing atomic weights are called isotopes. Radioactive decay is a spontaneous process in which an isotope (the parent) loses particles from its nucleus to form an isotope of a new element (the daughter). The rate of decay is conveniently expressed in terms of an isotope's half-life, or the time it takes for one-half of a particular radioactive isotope in a sample to decay. Most radioactive isotopes have rapid rates of decay (that is, short half-lives) and lose their radioactivity within a few days or years. Some isotopes, however, decay slowly, and several of these are used as geologic clocks.

Uranium-238 and Lead-206 have a half life of 4.5 billion years

On Fossils:
What you just wrote only adds to the scarcity of fossils. Hominid fossils share a number of morphological similarities with bones from modern humans.
Please refer to http://www.mnh.si.edu/anthro/humanorigins/ha/a_tree.html for further information.

Humans aside, what do you think about dinosaurs? Are these the famous Leviathan described by the Bible?
This site comes in handy: http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/faq-transitional.html

I think whales are a favorite subject for creationists, I think you’d like this site on whale evolution: http://www.edwardtbabinski.us/whales/evolution_of_whales/

Also check out this http://www.edwardtbabinski.us/whales/hind_limb_buds/ for atavism in dolphins.

On Daniel:
"Porphyry [3rd century Neoplatonist philosopher] wrote his 20th book against the prophecy of Daniel, denying that it was written by the individual to whom it is ascribed in its title, but rather by some person living in Judea at the time of Antiochus Epiphanes; he further alleged that Daniel did not prophesy the future so much as he related the past, and lastly whatever he spoke of up until the time of Antiochus contained genuine history, whereas anything he may have conjectured beyond that point was false inasmuch as he would have not foreknown the future."
(St. Jerome, Commentary on Daniel, 407 C.E.)

"The book ['Daniel'] must therefore have been written during the persecution under Antiochus Epiphanes and before his death, even before the success of the Maccabaean [Hasmonean] revolt; that is to say between 167 and 164."
(The New Jerusalem Bible, Introduction to Daniel)

January 05, 2007 11:31 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Are you an atheist, agnostic or Catholic?

1. No more discussion about purgatory if you’re not going to provide verses. It’s a man-made creation not found in Scripture.

2. Simply listing all the times “hell” is used does nothing for this conversation.

3. No more quotes from the SAB please. I’d like to hear YOUR thoughts and opinions about these things referencing the Bible in the process.

Luke 23:24
You referenced this verse as a possible contradiction to an afterlife. If you’re going to debate Christ’s existence and don’t care about where Jesus went after dying, it's a waste of time to quote him.

You also haven’t responded to any of my comments about this verse. If you’re not going to put any effort into this, please let me know. The same day he died, Jesus was in the grave. Is this or is this not “paradise”?

Luke 16:23
Again, let’s stick to the Bible. You haven’t acknowledged any of the points I’ve made. If hell is literal here, can people rejoicing in heaven literally have conversations with people suffering in hell?

Gospels
The point behind all your extra-Biblical quotes about the gospels escapes me. The Word of God was written by men who were inspired by God. I’m not sure what you’re arguing here.

Evil
Again, you’re choosing not to refer to Scripture to prove your point. Man is the root of evil. Gen. 6:5, 8:21; Mrk. 7:21-23; Jer. 17:9; Jms. 1:13-15, 4:1; I Pet. 2:11, 4:2; Rom. 7:17 - 8:13; Gal. 5:16.

God told Adam and Eve not to eat from the tree. They voluntarily decided to break God’s commandment. They were punished. What exactly is the problem?

Isaiah 45:7
There’s no contradiction here. God made everything, including evil. This is only logical since nothing would exist if God didn’t create it. God “preparing” something doesn’t mean He’s the "cause" of it when it occurs. If I cheat on my wife, it’s my fault, not God's/ Because I know the difference between good and evil means I take responsibility for whichever path I choose.

Radiometrics
There’s about as much evidence of the world being billions of years old and having single-celled creatures crawl out of the soup then there is evidence God created the earth with age built-in, etc. This is going to be a cyclical argument, we’ll both continue to state our positions without enough evidence to refute the other.

Fossils
How many complete skeletons of hominoids have been found? Explain the existence of fossils including fossilized animal tracts, rain drops and ripple marks
A plant or animal left to sit in the elements can be expected to rot fairly quickly. So how is it that millions and millions of fossilized marine animals and plant life are found? How could millions of years pass by, and yet the fish becomes fossilized intact? Then there’s the lack of what should be innumerable transitional forms. A "transitional form" is a hypothetical animal species that is the bridge between more commonly observed species in the evolutionary chain of events. Even avid believers in transitional forms would admit that relatively few transitional forms have been found. If evolution is constantly occurring, then why is the ratio of transitional forms to commonly observed species so low? We should be finding them all the time! In actuality, all "transitional" forms have been shown objectively to belong to commonly observed species.

Please, no more site links. Just write it yourself in layman’s terms.

Daniel
Matthew 24:15. Jesus refers to Daniel. Matthew was written before 100AD, therefore, so was Daniel. The Hebrew Bible was complied in approx 450BC. The book of Daniel is in the Hebrew Bible. Therefore, Daniel was written before 450BC. The prophecy stands.

Look at the quotes you provided. Both of them are nothing more then personal opinion. Where are the facts to go along with their claims?

Please, some work on your part would be appreciated.

January 05, 2007 12:38 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Right now I think I'm your Satan.

Do you consider death your reward for a life of pleasing Christ?

I tried to make you think outside the box. You make the Bible your only reference frame for everything; yet the Bible doesn't explain computer programming, does it? The Bible was manipulated, compiled and revised by men your Christadelphian faith would consider heretics.

Radiometrics
Radioactive decay is a fact. About Earth's built-in age, uhm, I think I saw pictures of young stars and planets in formation, this is what I can provide at the moment: http://origins.jpl.nasa.gov/library/roadmap97/science07.html
I couldn't see any humanoid God shaping the stars with his hands, though.

Transitional forms
The ratio of transitional forms to commonly observed species is low because, uhmm, how many paleontologists do you know? I think they're scarcer than bomb-defusers. Fossils became destroyed by geological processes such as tectonics and weathering; many fossils could still be entombed between geological strata, waiting to be unearthed; fossils could be inadvertently destroyed by builders, heavy machinery, etc.; urban areas have not been searched for fossils, etc.

Fossilization occurs as a corpse is buried under sediment at the bottom of a lake, stream, river, or sea. This may happen, for example, if an organism is swept away in a flood.

Had Noah's Flood happened there would be millions of fossils (air breathing animals included) stacked in the same geological layer, everywhere.

Alternatively, organisms can be buried under sand during storms, under ash during volcanic eruptions, in amber (polymerized tree sap)

In time, with water seepage, the atoms associated with the once living organism are replaced by minerals which precipitate out of the water within the structures of the organism before these structures are lost. Additionally, the buried sediments containing the buried organism gradually turn to stone, thus entombing the fossil in stone as well as converting imprints to stone.


http://www.mansfield.ohio-state.edu/~sabedon/biol1520.htm

I provided you with links to transitional forms. I don't think Basilosauruses are a common sighting these days.

Isaiah 45:7
There’s no contradiction here. God made everything, including evil.

Ah yes you're right sir. God made evil but man is the origin of evil, wait! God made evil, no wait! Man is the origin of evil, no wait! Erm…

Gen 8:21 speaks of the wickedness of men, not that man is the origin of evil.

On Dead:
Only because you asked it so nicely

sh'owl (sheh-ole')
Hades or the world of the dead (as if a subterranean retreat), including its accessories and inmates -- grave, hell, pit.

Genesis 37:35 http://scripturetext.com/genesis/37-35.htm
and all his sons and all his daughters rise to comfort him, and he refuseth to comfort himself, and saith, 'For -- I go down mourning unto my son, to Sheol,' and his father weepeth for him.

Numbers 16:30
and if a strange thing Jehovah do, and the ground hath opened her mouth and swallowed them, and all that they have, and they have gone down alive to Sheol -- then ye have known that these men have despised Jehovah.'

Isaiah 5:14
14Therefore hath Sheol enlarged herself, And hath opened her mouth without limit. And gone down hath its honour, and its multitude, And its noise, and its exulting one -- into her.

2 Peter 2:4
For if God did not spare angels when they sinned, but cast them into hell and committed them to pits of darkness, reserved for judgment;
http://scripturetext.com/2_peter/2-4.htm

Luke 8:31
and he was calling on him, that he may not command them to go away to the abyss

Mat. 13:42
and shall cast them to the furnace of the fire; there shall be the weeping and the gnashing of the teeth.

Etc.

On Daniel:

Matthew 24:15 is irrelevant. Christ's authority fades since the first recordings of Christ's life were written decades after Christ's death. The evangelist may have deliberately included a quote from Daniel in his forgery.

Hebrew Bible being compiled in 450BC? What's your source?

From Catholic Encyclopedia:
In the Hebrew Bible, and in most recent Protestant versions, the Book of Daniel is limited to its proto-canonical portions (chaps. i-vi). In the Septuagint, the Vulgate, and many other ancient and modern translations of the Bible, it comprises both its proto- and its deutero-canonical parts (chaps. vii-xii).

From Wikipedia:
The dating and authorship of Daniel has been a matter of great debate. The traditional view holds that the work was written by a prophet named Daniel who lived during the sixth century BC. Alternative modern views maintain that the book was written or redacted in the mid-second century BC and that most of the predictions of the book refer to events that had already occurred.
Traditionally, the Book of Daniel was believed to have been written by its namesake during and shortly after the Babylonian captivity in the sixth century BC. A significant number, though far from all, in the Judeo-Christian tradition continue to believe this today. In this point of view, the book is a work of divinely-inspired prophecy which correctly predicts book's content and world events for at least 400 years after its original composition.
While Orthodox Jewish and some Christian scholars still assert this as a realistic date, a considerably later writing or redaction is widely held on the basis of historical and textual analysis. In this view, except for possible minor glosses, the book reached its final form around 164 BC (Hartman and Di Lella, 1990, p. 408; Towner, 1993, p. 151). This gave the events that had already occurred during the fifth to second centuries BC the appearance of prophecies. The later date of composition explains why from 11:39 on, the prophecies fail to track accurately later events in the reign of Antiochus IV.

January 05, 2007 5:46 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Why don’t you want to answer this question: Are you an atheist, agnostic or Catholic?

Luke 23:42-43. Are you willing to submit that these verses are not referring to an afterlife?

Luke 16:23. Are you willing to submit that these verses are not referring to a literal hell as a place of eternal torment?

Reward
The reward I hope to achieve is the only reward laid out in Scripture: Entrance into God’s kingdom here on earth which Christ His son will establish when he returns. Matt. 6:10, Matt. 5:5, Ps. 37:11-35

Bible
I make the Bible my only reference for things concerning God and salvation because it’s everything we need to be “perfect” 2 Timothy 3:16. Why would I use some other book? It’s like a teacher telling you that every answer on the final exam is found in the yellow study book. You decide to “think outside the box” and buy the red study book. You ignore the yellow study book, memorize the red study book, and then fail miserably in your exam. Why think outside the box when the answers are most obviously right there in front of you?

Again, I'm a little confused here. Are you arguing against the validity of the Bible as a whole or the validity of my beliefs?

Please provide proof as to when and how the Bible was manipulated to such a point that false teachings have now corrupted the modern day Scripture. Remember, the writings that make up the modern day Bible are much, much older then the “Bible” itself…

Radiometrics
The fact that there are young stars and planets in formation does nothing to disprove the theory that God created the universe with age built in. It’s like saying “The fact that there are new apple trees growing today is proof God didn’t create a 10-year old apple tree.”

Here, let me ask YOU a question. What event conspired to result in the subsequent creation of our universe?

Humaniods
God is a humanoid? John 4:24 says God is a spirit. No wonder you didn’t seem him.

Transitional forms
I hear what you’re saying but the question still remains: If evolution is constantly occurring, then why is the ratio of transitional forms to commonly observed species so low?

And again, we can keep doing for ever:
Extensive fossil beds contain many remains of plants and animals in a perfect state of preservation, showing they were killed and buried suddenly by a great flood. Fossil fish are also sometimes found in distorted positions, showing instant burial and suffocation. Explain.

Those poor Basilosauruses. There are many changes required for a whale to evolve from a land mammal. One of them is to get rid of its pelvis. This would tend to crush the reproductive orifice with propulsive tail movements. But a shrinking pelvis would not be able to support the hind-limbs needed for walking. So the hypothetical transitional form would be unsuited to both land and sea, and hence be extremely vulnerable. The lowest whale fossils in the fossil record show they were completely aquatic from the first time they appeared. Basilosaurus did have small hind limbs (certainly too small for walking) but they were probably used for grasping during copulation (they’re very similar to the reduced legs used as copulatory guides on boas), according to even other evolutionists. For example, the evolutionary whale expert Philip Gingerich said, ‘It seems to me that they could only have been some kind of sexual and reproductive clasper. (The Press Enterprise, 1 July 1990. A–15) And finally, although hundreds of skeletons of Basilosaurus have been found, and hundreds of whale skeletons, nothing which would qualify as intermediate between these two has been uncovered.

Isaiah 45:7
Now you’re just being argumentative. God “created” darkness. The same Hebrew word is used for God “creating” evil. We wouldn’t say that darkness ‘originates’ with God to the extent that every time the sun goes down, darkness proceeds out of God, we would say that darkness is caused by the absence of light. In the same manner, the origin of evil is man.

The Christadelphian statement that “man is the origin of evil” assumes the reader possesses a basic understanding in the difference between God and His creation. If I say God created horses, I’m assuming you understand that baby horses originate from other horses.

Evil
Gen 8:21 says that man is wicked from his “youth”. Evil is inherent in everyone and comes to fruition when “lust has conceived” (James 1:15). The other verses I gave all show the same thing.

Death
Haven't you already stated you think hell was created by man...? Nonetheless, looking at the verses you provided. First, substitute “sheol” for “grave” and then reread your verses. Second, none of the references you provided mention hell as a place of eternal suffering.

Gen 37:35 “And all his sons and all his daughters rose up to comfort him; but he refused to be comforted; and he said, For I will go down into the grave unto my son mourning. Thus his father wept for him.”

Jacob was a righteous man. Are you suggesting a righteous man is now suffering for eternity in hell on account of his dead son?

Numbers 16:30
You’re reading into this. Moses told the people that if the wicked men died a normal death (:29), then the people would know that God hadn’t sent him. Therefore, he told the people the men would die an abnormal death. Hence, God opened up the ground, the men fell in and died, the ground closed back up. There’s no mention that Moses intended these people to suffer for eternity in burning hot magma.

Isaiah 5:14
The subject of this verse is the splendour of Jerusalem, not wicked men.

2 Peter 2:4
“Angel” = “messenger”. The word is used for human messengers in the following locations: Matt. 11:10; Luke 7:24, 27; 9:52; and James 2:25. We know these are human messengers in 2 Peter because:
1. The wages of sin is death;
2. If angels were sinners, they would die;
3. But angels don’t die (Luke 20:36)

Secondly:
1. There is compelling evidence that the human angels were the princes of the Israelite congregation which were led in rebellion by Korah, Dathan and Abiram (Your previously mentioned Numbers 16). Consider the following:
A. They were "angels" since they were assigned to "minister" to the congregation. (Num. 16:9).
B. Their "first estate" or "principality" (Jude 6) was that of "princes" or "leaders" (Num. 16:2).
C. They left this "former estate" when they sought the priesthood. (Num. 16:10).
D. They were delivered into "chains of darkness" (death) when they were swallowed alive by the earth. (Num. 16:31-33).

Luke 8:31
Jesus also went into “the abyss” in Romans 10:7 where the same Greek word is translated “the deep”. In keeping with previous definitions of the concept, it’s clear that “the abyss” is the grave: “Or, Who shall descend into the deep? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)”

Mat. 13:42
A better translation (KJV) of this verse reads (note the break after “fire”): “And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth.” The comparison in this section is made between wicked people and tares. As tares are thrown into the fire, so will the wicked. Since tares don’t suffer eternal suffering in hellfire, why would we assume people will? Much like the appropriate disposal method for tares, fire is used in Scripture for utter destruction, not for preservation in torment. Consider Sodom and Gomorrha, both destroyed by fire and brimstone and are now set forth as "an example, suffering the vengeance of eternal fire." (Jude 7 cf. Gen. 19:24). But are these cities still burning? Scripture affirms that these cities were overthrown in a moment. (Lam. 4:6) and turned to ashes. (2 Pet. 2:6 cf. Deut. 29:23).

Daniel
Matthew 24:14 is irrelevant??? If you don’t believe the entire Bible is the inspired word of God, then I can understand your position. However, if this is indeed your opinion, please explain why you’re quoting Scripture to prove your points.

I was initially confused by your CE quote but then I realized you added to the paragraph. The real quote reads: “In the Hebrew Bible, and in most recent Protestant versions, the Book of Daniel is limited to its proto-canonical portions. In the Septuagint, the Vulgate, and many other ancient and modern translations of the Bible, it comprises both its proto- and its deutero-canonical parts, both of which have an equal right to be considered as inspired…”

So if we’re to use the Church as an authority (ugh), the Book of Daniel is inspired. Note also that the CE goes through great lengths to prove the book was written when the Bible says it was written (during the Exile): 586 – 536BC

Codification of the Hebrew Bible (the Tanakh, or Old Testament)
http://www.owlnet.rice.edu/~reli207/elements.html

Tanakh [תנ״ך] is an acronym for the three parts of the Hebrew Bible, The threefold division of the Hebrew Bible reflected in the acronym Tanakh is well attested to in documents from the Second Temple period and in Rabbinic literature.
http://www.reference.com/browse/wiki/Tanakh

The Second Temple period ranges from 515BC – 70AD…Therefore, Daniel's prophecies were bang on.

January 07, 2007 11:24 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

I think Jews know their Tanakh better. Here are some quotes from Judaism 101:

http://www.jewfaq.org/olamhaba.htm#Gan

Traditional Judaism firmly believes that death is not the end of human existence. However, because Judaism is primarily focused on life here and now rather than on the afterlife, Judaism does not have much dogma about the afterlife, and leaves a great deal of room for personal opinion.

The spiritual afterlife is referred to in Hebrew as Olam Ha-Ba (oh-LAHM hah-BAH), the World to Come, although this term is also used to refer to the messianic age. The Olam Ha-Ba is another, higher state of being.

Gan Eden and Gehinnom

The place of spiritual reward for the righteous is often referred to in Hebrew as Gan Eden (GAHN ehy-DEHN) (the Garden of Eden). This is not the same place where Adam and Eve were; it is a place of spiritual perfection. Specific descriptions of it vary widely from one source to another. One source says that the peace that one feels when one experiences Shabbat properly is merely one-sixtieth of the pleasure of the afterlife. Other sources compare the bliss of the afterlife to the joy of sex or the warmth of a sunny day. Ultimately, though, the living can no more understand the nature of this place than the blind can understand color.

Only the very righteous go directly to Gan Eden. The average person descends to a place of punishment and/or purification, generally referred to as Gehinnom (guh-hee-NOHM) (in Yiddish, Gehenna), but sometimes as She'ol or by other names. According to one mystical view, every sin we commit creates an angel of destruction (a demon), and after we die we are punished by the very demons that we created. Some views see Gehinnom as one of severe punishment, a bit like the Christian Hell of fire and brimstone.


On Daniel
Even the Church acknowledges that the deuterocanonical part of Daniel i.e. chapters 7 to 12 aren't in the Tanakh, and that these chapters are a later addition (Septuagint). Catholics still consider the whole of Daniel "inspired" because, well, it serves to their purposes. Mormons consider The Book of Mormon "inspired" but of course you'll never take them seriously. Also, I wonder why is that Daniel was not included with the Tanakh's prophetic books???

http://bible.tmtm.com/wiki/DANIEL%2C_BOOK_OF_%28Jewish_Encyclopedia%29
http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=34&letter=D&search=daniel
The Book of Daniel was written during the persecutions of Israel by the Syrian king Antiochus Epiphanes. This assertion is supported by the following data: The kingdom which is symbolized by the he goat (viii. 5 et seq.) is expressly named as the "kingdom of Yawan"—that is, the Grecian kingdom (viii. 21) the great horn being its first king, Alexander the Great (definitely stated in Seder "Olam R. xxx.), and the little horn Antiochus Epiphanes (175-164). This kingdom was to persecute the host of the saints "unto two thousand and three hundred evenings and mornings" (viii. 14, R. V.); that is, "half-days," or 1,150 days; and Epiphanes did, in fact, profane the sanctuary in Jerusalem for about that length of time, from Kislew 15, 168, to Kislew 25,165 (I Macc. i. 57, iv. 52). The little horn described in Dan. viii. 9-12, 23-25 has the same general characteristics as the little horn in vii. 8, 20; hence the same ruler is designated in both passages. The well-known passage ix. 23-27 also points to the same period. The first and imperative rule in interpreting it is to begin the period of the seventy times seven units (A. V. "seventy weeks") with the first period of seven (ix. 25), and to let the second period, the "sixty-two times seven units," follow this; forif this second period (the sixty-two weeks) be reckoned as beginning again from the very beginning, the third period, the "one week," must be carried back in the same way. The context demands, furthermore, that the origin of the prediction concerning the rebuilding of Jerusalem be sought in Jer. xxv. 11-13 and the parallel passage, ib. xxix. 10. The "anointed," the "prince," mentioned after the first seven times seven units, must be Cyrus, who is called the anointed of the Lord in Isa. xlv. 1 also. He concluded the first seven weeks of years by issuing the decree of liberation, and the time that elapsed between the Chaldean destruction of Jerusalem (586) and the year 538 was just about forty-nine years. The duration of the sixty-two times seven units (434 years) does not correspond with the time 538-171 (367 years); but the chronological knowledge of that age was not very exact. The Seder 'Olam Zuṭa (ed. Meyer, p. 104) computed the Persian rule to have lasted fifty-two years. This is all the more evident as the last period of seven units must include the seven years 171-165 (see "Rev. Et. Juives," xix. 202 et seq.). This week of years began with the murder of an anointed one (compare Lev. iv. 3 et seq. on the anointing of the priest)—namely, the legitimate high priest Onias III.—and it was in the second half of this week of years that the Temple of the Lord was desecrated by an abomination—the silver altar erected by Antiochus Epiphanes in place of the Lord's altar for burnt offering (see I Macc. i. 54).

Matthew is irrelevant because the quote from Daniel was known beforehand, the evangelist could have quoted whatever verse he liked and included it with the gospel. I find it strange that Jesus couldn't name the 10 commandments (Matthew 19:19) but he was able to quote Psalm 22:1 verbatim while nailed to the cross!

Noah's Flood
Why so many fossil fishes? Because of sediments deposited by water where fishes lived. We were discussing about air-breathing, land animals. Anyway, how come exotic animals such as the giant anteater made it from South America to the Middle East??? I think the Ark (if ever existed) was way short to house all of the world's animals, water, and food. Also, how come 900,000+ species of insects made their way to the Ark?

It baffles me that God, that omniscient being, couldn't foresee that Noah's descendants would be as rotten as the people he drowned along with their newborns and children. He should have drown them all, so he wouldn't need to send Jesus to die.

God's shape
Forget about John, this is what YHWH said in Genesis 1:26
26And God saith, `Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness

Bible manipulation
I don't think God created Adam and Eve with language skills built-in 'cause, for a start, they couldn't even tell good from evil; and because oral tradition could had degenerated into chinese whispers.

Intermediate forms
You forgot Pakicetus, Ambuloscetus, Rodhocetus, Protocetus, to name a few transitional forms, Basilosaurus was just another one. Remember that water supports the weight of marine animals. Lo and behold! You just admitted Basilosauruses or Basilosauri, whatever, had small hind limbs. I think they didn't require claspers in order to mate because, you know, they were mammals and mammals have penises, male whales still have penises. I provided you with the photo of an atavistic dolphin, and here http://www.wksu.org/news/story/19362 you'll find the photo of a dolphin embryo, notice the hind limbs buds and the tail. I wonder why did God provide dolphins with vestigial pelvises???? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Dolphin_anatomy.png

Evil
Remember Isaiah 45:7 and I quote you:
There’s no contradiction here. God made everything, including evil.
So, God created evil therefore God is the origin of evil.

January 09, 2007 5:21 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

I'm not sure why you're avoiding this one. Are you an atheist, agnostic or Catholic? No, it's not a trick question.

Hell
1. Luke 23:42-43. Are you willing to submit that these verses are not referring to an afterlife?
2. Luke 16:23. Are you willing to submit that these verses are not referring to a literal hell as a place of eternal torment?

We’re not discussing Jewish “personal opinion” here. This is a discussion revolving around the supposed evidence for hell as a place of eternal suffering using the Bible as guide. I’ve laid things out quite clearly using Scriptural references and am patiently waiting for your rebuttals, if any.

Daniel
I’m extremely confused by your continued insistence to misquote the Catholic Encyclopedia. The Catholic Encyclopedia never says Daniel chapters 7-12 are deutero-canonical. Please, look at it again. This is what’s found under the title “PROTO-CANONICAL PORTIONS”, word for word: “The Book of Daniel, as it now stands in the ordinary Hebrew Bibles, is generally divided into two main parts. The first includes a series of narratives which are told in the third person (chaps. i-vi), and the second, a series of visions which are described in the first person (chaps. vii-xii).” This is precisely the reason why extra-Biblical quotes aren't welcome here. In the future, I would appreciate a more careful reading of your sources before posting. You’re serving only to cloud and confuse the issue at hand.

This being said, I can’t continue to discuss Daniel until you address points that need to be examined, specifically Daniel’s inclusion in the Hebrew Bible. Everything else aside, if Daniel was written during the reign of Antiochus, the book couldn’t have been included in the Hebrew Bible since this was complied approx. 400 years earlier.

Flood
Explain how sediments could have settled so quickly so as to instantly suffocate and bury fish.

Who said anteaters were ever in South America prior to the Flood?

The Flood Solution
Ah, you think you have the answer: God should have drowned all the bad people a second time!!!! Makes perfect sense…from man’s perspective. Why do you think God sent His son to die? To SAVE people instead of destroying them all again. I’m glad you’re not God. You’re far too quick on trigger.

God’s Shape
No, don’t forget about John. God is spirit. That’s what the Bible says. The problem comes with your assumption that the “us” in Genesis 1:26 is talking about God. You’ll be happy to know there’s more evidence the “us” is referring to about angels then it is God.

Bible Manipulation
You’re whole comment is a personal opinion. In response to your claim, I was asking for proof as to when and how the Bible was manipulated.

Transition forms
What proof is there that the animals you listed aren’t just extinct, unique animals instead of transitional forms?

I don’t know how you mate but most people I know use their hands during the process, you know, for clasping purposes...

Evil
God “created” darkness. The same Hebrew word is used for God “creating” evil. We wouldn’t say that darkness ‘originates’ with God to the extent that every time the sun goes down, darkness proceeds out of God, we would say that darkness is caused by the absence of light. In the same manner, the origin of evil is man.

The Christadelphian statement that “man is the origin of evil” assumes the reader possesses a basic understanding in the difference between God and His creation. If I say God created horses, I’m assuming you understand that baby horses originate from other horses. God created air but today, air originates from the complex process of photosynthesis. God created apples but today we don’t get apples from God, we get them from a tree. God created darkness but darkness doesn’t originate with God. More?

As for the other unanswered questions you’ve missed, there are some important ones there so I’d like to know if you have answers for them or not. Like purgatory, maybe we can start putting some of these other issues to rest.

January 09, 2007 11:46 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Hi there!

Oh, you don't know how I mate. What was that phrase you used... Aw, shucks. Well I tried to save you from pulling ad-homini, being that only you Christians(tm) are the keepers of truth and absolute moral; although Christianity is divided in countless sects each one with their own set of beliefs.

About claspers
These are shark claspers, proper claspers: http://www.amonline.net.au/FISHES/fishfacts/images/cleucl1c.jpg
Did you see that? There are two and they're under the animal not protruding from the sides.

Now look at the loins of an Orca (which is a dolphin): http://img70.imageshack.us/img70/4318/orcapenis8gs.jpg
Did you see that? No claspers, just one frigging big choad. And cetaceans don't need hands to copulate.

Transitional forms
For a start, those transitional animals show the nostrils migrating from the snout to the top of the animal's cranium, and they also show the shrinking limbs. http://www.edwardtbabinski.us/whales/evolution_of_whales/
Also, cetaceans like dolphins have vestigial pelvises. Explain that.

On Daniel
The difference in style and the use of Aramaic for chapters II:4 to VII:28 and Hebrew for the rest made the Catholic Church admit the separation of Daniel in protocanonical and deuterocanonical parts. Jews, who know their Tanakh better than you would ever do, are also aware of this issue and in Jewish Encyclopedia they specifically state that the Book of Daniel was written during the persecutions of Israel by the Syrian king Antiochus Epiphanes http://bible.tmtm.com/wiki/DANIEL%2C_BOOK_OF_%28Jewish_Encyclopedia%29
http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=34&letter=D&search=daniel
Now, who would be more reliable, you or the Jewish scholars? Uhmmm....

Evil
Yeah, that's the Christadelphian statement, not the Jewish nor the Catholic, nor the mainstream Christian statement.

Ponder this: You know Adam and Eve were created blameless, right? They couldn't tell good from evil until after they ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Now ask yourself this: Who created the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil and put it in the middle of Eden???? Answer: God. Therefore, God is the origin of evil.

Bible manipulation
Well, there's our discussion on the book of Daniel.

http://bible.tmtm.com/wiki/DANIEL%2C_BOOK_OF_%28Jewish_Encyclopedia%29
Nor would a contemporary of Nebuchadnezzar and his successors have written the stories of the Book of Daniel in the form in which they exist, since they contain many details that can not be harmonized with the data furnished in other historical sources. The first verse, for instance, contradicts other passages of the O. T. in saying that King Nebuchadnezzar came to Jerusalem in the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim, and besieged it. For the verb (image) means here, as elsewhere, "come," "arrive," and can not be equivalent to "break up"; this is also proved by the context of i. 1.

Daniel 1:1
In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah, come hath Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to Jerusalem, and layeth siege against it;


But Jeremiah announced the coming of the Chaldeans only in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, a year that is expressly designated, in Jer. xxv. 1, xlvi. 2, as the first year of King Nebuchadnezzar.

Jer 25:1
YLT: The word that hath been unto Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim son of Josiah king of Judah, -- it [is] the first year of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon,


Purgatory and Hell
Did you read about Gan Eden? Or you just avoided it?

Only the very righteous go directly to Gan Eden. The average person descends to a place of punishment and/or purification, generally referred to as Gehinnom (guh-hee-NOHM) (in Yiddish, Gehenna), but sometimes as She'ol or by other names. According to one mystical view, every sin we commit creates an angel of destruction (a demon), and after we die we are punished by the very demons that we created. Some views see Gehinnom as one of severe punishment, a bit like the Christian Hell of fire and brimstone.

That's what the Jews believe, and they must know better since they're the original beneficiaries of god's plan (not that that's a good thing) god's chosen people according to the Old Testament.

Remember what Jesus himself said:

Matthew 15:24
and he answering said, `I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.'

Matthew 10:5
These twelve did Jesus send forth, having given command to them, saying, `To the way of the nations go not away, and into a city of the Samaritans go not in

Although he mysteriously changed his mind later. What would be more probable, Jesus changing his mind or St. Paul and/or the evangelists hijacking Jesus' mission?

Luke 23:43

σημερον semeron say'-mer-on
on the (i.e. this) day (or night current or just passed); generally, now (i.e. at present, hitherto) -- this (to-)day.

παραδεισω noun - dative singular masculine
paradeisos par-ad'-i-sos
a park, i.e. (specially), an Eden (place of future happiness, paradise) -- paradise.

43and Jesus said to him, `Verily I say to thee, To-day with me thou shalt be in the paradise.'

Yes, the Bible refers to an afterlife paradise. According to Luke, Jesus promised the thief they would be together in paradise that same day.

Luke 16:23
23and in the hades having lifted up his eyes, being in torments, he doth see Abraham afar off, and Lazarus in his bosom.

You wrote that that's a metaphor. One featuring a place called Hades and that could have been influenced by Greek mythology I added.

http://bible.tmtm.com/wiki/Hell
In Scripture there are three words so rendered:

(1.) Sheol, occurring in the Old Testament sixty-five times. This word sheol is derived from a root-word meaning "to ask," "demand;" hence insatiableness (Prov 3015f). It is rendered "grave" thirty-one times (Gen 3735; Gen 4238; Gen 4429ff; 1Sam 26, etc.). The Revisers have retained this rendering in the historical books with the original word in the margin, while in the poetical books they have reversed this rule.

In thirty-one cases in the Authorized Version this word is rendered "hell," the place of disembodied spirits. The inhabitants of sheol are "the congregation of the dead" (Prov 2116). It is (a) the abode of the wicked (Num 1633; Job 2419; Ps 917; Ps 3117, etc.); (b) of the good (Ps 1610; Ps 303; Ps 4915; Ps 8613, etc.).

Sheol is described as deep (Job 118), dark (Job 1021ff), with bars (Job 1716). The dead "go down" to it (Num 1630, Num 1633; Ezek 3115ff).

(2.) The Greek word hades of the New Testament has the same scope of signification as sheol of the Old Testament. It is a prison (1 Pet 319), with gates and bars and locks (Mt 1618; Rev 118), and it is downward (Mt 1123; Lk 1015).

The righteous and the wicked are separated. The blessed dead are in that part of hades called paradise (Lk 2343). They are also said to be in Abraham's bosom (Lk 1622).

(3.) Gehenna, in most of its occurrences in the Greek New Testament, designates the place of the lost (Mt 2333). The fearful nature of their condition there is described in various figurative expressions (Mt 812; Mt 1342; Mt 2213; Mt 2530; Lk 1624, etc.). (See also Hinnom.)


God's shape
No. YOU don't forget what the Bible God said in Genesis 1:26. John (if he ever existed) was just a man for Pete's sake!
I can't believe the lengths you go to twist the Bible to make it conform to your views, you're not being honest with yourself.

The problem comes with your assumption that the “us” in Genesis 1:26 is talking about God. You’ll be happy to know there’s more evidence the “us” is referring to about angels then it is God.

So what now? Man was created by angels?

January 10, 2007 10:44 AM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Sediments
Are you familiar with earthquakes? Tsunamis? Landslides? Well, that is why. Remember that minerals replace the bone tissue, this doesn't happens instantly.

Who said anteaters were ever in South America prior to the Flood?

Do we have to believe they swam all the way from South America to the Middle East?

http://www.maiaw.com/anteater/
Edentates diverged from insectivores during the Cretaceous (135 million years ago) in South America and were greatly diversified already by the end of the end of the Age of Dinosaurs (beginning of Age of Mammals) some 65 million years ago. The Myrmecophagidae family is known only back to the Early Miocene (25 million years ago) in South America, though the fossil record is poor so the group may go back a good deal further.

The Flood Solution
Ah, you think you have the answer: God should have drowned all the bad people a second time!!!! Makes perfect sense…from man’s perspective. Why do you think God sent His son to die? To SAVE people instead of destroying them all again. I’m glad you’re not God. You’re far too quick on trigger.


Oh yes! God killed nearly all humankind, all except 8 people in a wooden ship with no rudder, no compass, no sail, no water, no food, not enough space, no nothing, just so he could send Jesus!!!! That sadist!.

Noah, the only "righteous" man on Earth was a drunkard and a wicked man, he cursed his grandson for Ham's indiscretion.

January 10, 2007 11:34 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Jacques, if you’re going to insult the God I believe in, we’ll end this conversation now. I’m not here to listen to you bash my God because you have nothing more intelligent to say.

If you'd like to continue, I'll post my responses to your comments.

January 10, 2007 1:25 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

I'm sorry Jason, I didn't want to offend you.

I couldn't come up with any euphemism for the being who according to the Bible nearly wiped humankind off the Earth, innocents and guilty alike, saving a sample (not a good one) to try the race over again. Either he was not able to foresee that humankind would go rotten again, or he did it on purpose to witness humankind writhing in suffering again, so that he could send his only begotten son (he himself according to Trinitarianism) to die to wash away the world’s sins, although to this day newborns are still tainted with the Original Sin, sinners and unbelievers are still doomed to Hell/Grave/Sheol/Hades/Pit/Gehenna. Also, Jesus gave us the gift of his death for 3 days and then he took it away from us.

What were humans created for? God's amusement? Why does he need our love, anyway? Why is he wildly jealous? Jealous of what, golden calves? The maker of everything is afraid of the creations of his creation (Genesis 11:1-9) If he found men's pride unbearable back then, why didn't his mighty hand crush the Vostok-1 with Gagarin inside, and destroyed the Apollo 11?

The all-loving God sentenced a man to death for the abominable sin of gathering wood on Sabbath (Numbers 15:32-36)

God allowed the massacre of the Midianites (Numbers 25:10-17)

The same caring God killed Aaron's sons for offering him the wrong kind of incense. (Lev 10:1-2)

God forbids murder, but he let the Levites carried out Moses' orders (Exodus 32:27-28) of pass over and turn back from gate to gate through the camp slaying brothers, parents, espouses, and friends; right after Moses was given the stones with the 10 commandments. Exodus 32 speaks lengths of absolute morals

How could I love a God like that? How could I be sure that that God wouldn't do to me injustices like the ones quoted above? How could you be sure that the Bible God will treat you fair and won't dismiss you in the hereafter for brushing your teeth on Sabbath?

Do I have to bind myself to the bed on Sabbaths, make burnt offerings, get circumcised, kill unbelievers, hate my parents, give away all my belongings, gouge my eyes out whenever I see a girl in a miniskirt, in order to be saved?

I'd like to comment about the red and the yellow books: How do you know the answers from the yellow book are not wrong? You need to compare them with other sources; you buy the red, the blue, the white, and the green books, analyze the data and make a conclusion. Then you can tell whether or not your teacher was wrong.

January 11, 2007 1:22 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

The NT says that the days of Noah foreshadow the times immediately prior to Christ’s return, an age when men will be wicked through and through. The fact that things have gotten to the point where evil reigns so supreme that God has to put a stop to it (e.g. the Flood and Christ’s return) is a reflection of human nature, not God’s sadistic ways.

For all those who do believe the Bible is God’s Word, there can be no debate about the choices we have: life or death (Deut. 30). The fact that it’s OUR choice speaks volumes to me in regards to who’s fault it is that the world is/was at the point it is now/time of Noah.

As for Noah being a drunkard, etc., this serves to tell me that Noah was human, suffering the same weaknesses and temptations that I do. The fact that God would save a man like Noah means that God will hopefully save someone like me.

As for newborns, we simply don’t know enough to pass judgment either way. The responsibility to judge a newborn is thankfully not up to us. God will save who He saves. Original sin or not, newborns end up in the same place we do when we die: the grave. It does us no good to spend time figuring out what will happen to them before and when Christ returns – our faith is that whatever God decides in terms of judgment, it will be a perfect judgment.

Remember as well that children are sanctified under their parents: 1Cr 7:14 “For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.” In other words, parents have a huge responsibility in terms of the their walk in Christ since it could very well affect the salvation of their children.

Reading the Bible from front to back will leave anyone with the impression that we weren’t created for God’s amusement. God doesn’t get enjoyment out of people dying (2 Peter 3:9). Genesis 11 doesn’t say God was afraid of His creation, it simply says that with everyone speaking one language, there would be no restraint man’s desire. The fact that God only confused the people instead of destroying them again shouldn’t be overlooked. The tower of Babel wasn’t simply a conquest to reach space, the tower was a temple which was to be elevated to compete with the authority of God (:4).

I wonder what perception critics would have of God if He never punished anyone? The catch phrase, instead of “An all-loving God shouldn’t punish people”, would be “God is a weakling with no backbone.” It’s very much lose-lose. ☺ God punishing people, whether through death or otherwise, isn’t an indication He’s not all-loving, it’s an indication that there are consequences to our actions. The man who was put to death in Numbers 15 reflects that. God said, “If you do this, you’ll die.” The man does it, God isn’t slack concerning punishment, the man dies. Once again, it comes back to personal responsibility.

24,000 Israelities were killed in Numbers 25 as well. It’s not as if God is one-sided in His wrath.

God had specific rules regarding incense. The “strange fire” was something the Lord “commanded them not” (:1) but Aaron’s sons went ahead and did it anyway. Again, this is all about personal responsibility. If Aaron’s sons were a little more diligent and took God’s commandments a little more seriously, they wouldn’t have been killed.

Once again, in Exodus 32, we have an account of the people constructing an idol and then worshipping it, a huge faux pas when it comes to God. The people were well, well aware of what they were doing and considering they had only just been delivered out of Egypt by God, you can image why God was so angry.

None of these examples are “injustices”. They are the direct results of decisions made by people. It’s not as if God decided one day to wipe 20,000 people for no reason other then it made Him feel good. For example, let's pretend the American Supreme court is perfect. It passes a law that says, "If you murder someone, you will be put to death." Someone breaks the law, kills another person and then is sentenced to death. Is this an injustice? The law was clear, the judgment was perfect, the offending party was put to death. Why blame God when it's quite obviously man who's at fault?

How am I sure God will ‘treat me fair’? Because I see nothing to suggest God is unfair.

Brushing my teeth on the Sabbath won’t get me in trouble as the old law is no longer in effect - yours is the same question the Pharisees asked Jesus, minus the teeth brushing part, and it was something which Jesus went through great lengths to explain. Because of the new law brought in by Christ, there’s no longer any requirement for circumcision, etc. The letter to the Hebrews spells this out very clearly since these people were hanging into the old law and questioning the validity of the new law.

Baptism is a vital ingredient to be “saved”. As is prayer, forgiveness of sins, works, faith, etc.

I believe the Bible is God’s word. The Bible says that Scripture is enough to make a man perfect in righteousness. I therefore have no need to look elsewhere to compare notes.

January 11, 2007 4:53 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Matthew 5:17
Do not suppose that I came to throw down the law or the prophets -- I did not come to throw down, but to fulfill;

Don't brush your teeth on sabbath :)

I think the American Supreme Court could never sentence a man to death for gathering wood.

Aaron, Moses, and the men that brought the poor chap from Numbers 15:32-36 to the Assembly and keep him in custody weren't working??? I think that God should had killed them too. I wonder why is that God didn't kill that poor guy himself, He being all-powerful and stuff, so that Aaron and Moses could keep the Sabbath as it was intended.

The Letter to the Hebrews was written by St. Paul, how come a man who had just a glimpse of Jesus could overthrow the laws given by YHWH himself!?

Yeah, YHWH is an angry God.

Deuteronomy 6:15
for the LORD your God, who is among you, is a jealous God and his anger will burn against you, and he will destroy you from the face of the land.

I think it's about time Christians give up the idea of a personal, cute, forgiving, cuddly god and realize that every time they talk about how much they adore Coca Cola, Mickey Mouse, Shakira, Oprah, Wacko Jackson or Borat they're stirring God's wrath. People should realize that they are not especial, they are not God's sons but his slaves. Would you kill your son for such an insignificant thing like burning the wrong incense? No, you're not God but even you wouldn't even think of carry out such an injustice.

The fact that things have gotten to the point where evil reigns so supreme that God has to put a stop to it (e.g. the Flood and Christ’s return) is a reflection of human nature, not God’s sadistic ways.

Yet God in all his omniscience didn't keep humans from procreating, maybe he wanted humankind to reach a population of millions to have one massive drowning-fest. Also, millions of animals were innocent victims of God's wrath. That's what I call unfairness.

I want to share this with you: http://resources.theology.ox.ac.uk/library/data/pdf/THD0040.pdf
"A commentary on the book of Daniel" by John Collins.

I think you'll find it enjoyable.

On page 39:
1.The individual tales of chaps. 2-6 were originally separate.

2.There was probably an initial collection of 3:31-6:29 which allowed the development of two textual traditions in these chapters.

3.The Aramaic tales were collected, with the introductory chap. 1, in the Hellenistic period.

4.Daniel 7 was composed in Aramaic early in the persecution of Antiochus Epiphanes, before the desecration of the temple. Chapters 1-7 may have circulated briefly as an Aramaic book.

5.Between 167 and 164 B.C.E. the Hebrew chapters 8-12 were added, and chap. 1 was translated to provide a Hebrew frame for the Aramaic chapters. The glosses in 12:11-12 were added before the rededication of the temple.
The text underwent further development in its Greek recension.

January 12, 2007 4:07 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

We're getting a bit off topic here...

The Old Law
To put this one issue to rest, there can be no mistaking the NT teachings regarding the old law: Col 2:14-17 “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances (the old law) that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross; And having spoiled principalities and powers, he made a shew of them openly, triumphing over them in it. Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come…”

Gal 4:9-10 "But now, after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye again to the weak and beggarly elements (the old law), whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage? Ye observe days (e.g. the Sabbath), and months, and times, and years."

The whole point of Christ’s death and resurrection was the bringing in of the new law. To suggest that Christians must still keep the Sabbath is to suggest we should also still be offering sacrifices and keeping the feasts. This most obviously isn’t the case: Hebrews 7:12 “The priesthood being changed (from the Levites to Christ), there is made of necessity a change also of the law"

Hebrews 8:7 “For if that first covenant had been faultless, then should no place have been sought for the second.”

Hebrews 9:28 “So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”

Again, the issue you’re attempting to raise is the same that many Jews in the NT had trouble accepting: the doing away of the old covenant (sacrifices, feasts, fasting, etc.). We can make single verses say many things, but when tied together with other references, we get the big picture: It is evident that the law of Moses has been ended by the sacrifice of Christ. To trust in a human priesthood or to still offer animal sacrifices means that we do not accept the fullness of Christ's victory. Such beliefs mean that we do not accept Christ's sacrifice as completely successful. So, if we are going to observe the law of Moses, we must attempt to keep all of it. Disobedience to just one part of it means that those who are under it are condemned: "As many as are of (i.e. rely on) the works of the law are under the curse: for it is written, Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them" (Gal. 3:10). "Christ hath redeemed us from the curse of the law, being made a curse for us" (Gal. 3:13)

Because of this, we are quite obviously no longer required to keep any part of the law of Moses.

Brush your teeth on the Sabbath.

And Paul didn’t in any way overthrow the laws himself. Read the first chunk of Hebrews and reference verses where it says someone other then Jesus replaced the old law.

Numbers 15:32
You’re missing the point about the Supreme Court. Regardless of what we think about the law, the law is still the law. If the law says, “Don’t gather wood on the Sabbath, punishable by death” whether you think it’s a silly law doesn’t make the law void. If God says you don’t gather wood on the Sabbath, you don’t gather wood on the Sabbath. End of story.

Your argument and Aaron and Moses were “working” because they put a man in prison is ridiculous. Aaron was breathing, is that “work”? Moses was walking, is that “work”? No, God tells us exactly what “work” involved:

Exodus 16:27 – Work involves gathering food
Exodus 20:9 – Work is whatever duties, etc. one would normally do during the week.

In other words, “work” was doing those things that would take your focus away from God (e.g. working the field). Whatever we think about this law is once again of no consequence. The law is the law.

Exodus 31:15 clearly states that any man who is found working on the Sabbath would be put to death. No excuses can be made for this man. If God had killed the man himself, you’d be wondering why He didn’t just get Aaron and Moses to do it.

God
God gets angry, God loves and God forgives. You’re the only one saying that Christians think God is cute and cuddly. Much the same as a parent, only one that gives life and takes life away, God punishes people when they break His commandments, God rewards people when they follow His word, and God loves people when they act faithfully. Scripture even says “God so loved the world…”

The problem with your view of God is that you’re attempting to ascribe human logic and human reasoning to explain Him away. “Unfair” and “injustice” are ineffective words when describing God because a) we’re not perfect, b) we can’t see the big picture and c) we don’t like taking orders so our view is naturally biased. Scripture presents God as a loving God who punishes those who incur His wrath. Since this is what it is, the key is not to incur God’s wrath by doing things contrary to His commandments. It’s like following the laws of the land: Don’t want to be put in jail? Don’t break the law.

Why should God stop people from procreating? That’s like telling mankind to stop having babies so the murder rate will fall to 0. The fact that’s He’s all powerful doesn’t mean He should be the one taking responsibility for our actions, actions which, by the way, are done out of complete free will. The Bible is quite clear on WHY God sent the Flood. Whatever you or I think He should have done instead is irrelevant. What’s done is done.

The Poor Animals
Millions of animals were innocent victims?????? You’re saying God’s cruel and evil because He killed animals??? Maybe you should stop eating burgers if it’s got you that upset.

Let's get back to our old conversation. This one is all ranting and raving and opinionizing.

January 13, 2007 11:49 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

The original conversation:

I'm not sure why you're avoiding this one question. Are you an atheist, agnostic or Catholic? No, it's not a trick question...I'd like to peg you as an atheist but you use the Bible to support common Christian doctrine...?

Hell
1. Luke 23:42-43. I’ll ask this question again: Where did Jesus go immediately after he died? Is the place that he went considered “paradise”? I’ve already given you an explanation about these verses and you chose not to refute them.
2. Luke 16:23. So we agree this is simply a metaphor and not to be taken literally.

Purgatory
You’ve already stated that hell and purgatory are inventions of man. What are we discussing if neither one of us believe they exist? And you’ve lost me about Jesus changing his mind. To help me out a little, please communicate what you’d like me to respond to and which things are just idle pokes and pinches.

Sheol
Yes, the grave does contain the congregation of the dead, it is the abode of the wicked, dead people go into it, and it is the abode of the good. Christianity doesn’t teach that hell is a place where good people go though. So what’s the deal? Solution: the grave is where every dead person goes. It’s a prison because there ain’t no getting out. Once dead, always dead. Until Christ’s return, of course. Your description of what hell is fits perfectly with it being the grave and not a place of torment.

The real nail in the proverbial coffin is that all those Christians who believe that hell is a place of suffering can offer no evidence for anyone ever going to heaven since Scripture is quite clear that “no one has seen God” and that “no one has ascended to heaven”. Secondly, the belief in in the existence of both places a huge emphasis on the individual to show where in Scripture two judgments are taught instead of the common one judgment.

Claspers
Hey man, I’m not a biologist or whatever those animal people are called, I’m just repeating what the experts say: the claspers are used to grab the female during sex. Some animals have them, some don’t.

Transitional forms
Explain vestigial pelvises? Forget that, why not first explain exactly how whales evolved from land mammals and how the transitional animal was able to survive without a pelvis. Do you know that the only relationship Mesonychids (the animal which is said to have evolved into whales) have with whales is their triangular shaped teeth? This evolution thing sure is a stretch...

Daniel
For the last time, the protocanonical portion of Daniel includes Chapters 1-12. The deuterocanonical portions include:
• the Prayer of Azarias and the Song of the Three Children
• the history of Susanna
• the history of the destruction of Bel and the dragon
There is nothing left to say on this matter. You’re abusing the information that’s available and blatantly twisting about what it’s saying. An apology would be in order.

The whole issue critics have with Daniel come down to this: Since certain prophecies in the book of Daniel seem to have their fulfillment in Antiochus IV Epiphanes and since some/most people have a bias against prophecy, they believe the book of Daniel must have been written at the time of the Antiochus. Simply put, there is no evidence whatsoever that the book was written in 164/5 BC. The arguments are all based on inferences (Jewish Encyclopedia) and opinion (“Daniel is as vague as Nostradamus” – interestingly, this is a point you haven’t brought up again). Difference in style and the use of Aramaic doesn’t prove a later writing of Daniel because the question then becomes, why would someone have written a book in two different languages and why Aramiac and Hebrew when the predominante language of the time was Greek? Here are the arguments:

1. If the book had been forged by a Jew in the time of Antiochus, there is every reason to believe that he would have been careful to write it in as pure Hebrew as possible because that was the language in which the canonical books were written. If the writer was trying to gain credit for the book as one of divine authority, he would not have intermingled so much of a foreign language.

2. If the book was written under Antiochus, why are there so few Greek words in the text? To state it another way: if the book was written during a time of such intensive and extensive Greek influence then why are there only THREE Greek words in the entire text? There are more words borrowed from the Persian language then there are Greek, so for what purpose would an older language assume more prominence? It’s the exact opposite of what we should expect given the major language(s) of 'Later Daniel’s' time.

3. The dialect of Aramaic found in the book of Daniel is most decidedly of eastern dialect, markedly different then the same dialect spoken in Israel around 165BC.

4. The word "herald" in Dan. 3:4 is of Old Iranian origin. [Iranische Beitrage I (Halle, 1930)] Just the use of this word alone means that the book had to have been written long before the 2nd century (because knowledge of it had been lost) and that the book of Daniel was not written in Israel.

5. It is noted even by liberal scholars that there is marked degree of correspondence between the books of Ezra and Daniel. Ezra wasn't written around 165BC.

6. The very fact that the book was translated by Septuagint translators also tells us that the book could not have been written in 165 B.C.

7. As for the “discrepancy” with when King Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem, Daniel is using the Babylonian system of dating the king's reign whereas Jeremiah is using the Israeli system of dating. In Babylon, the year in which the king ascended the throne was designated specifically as 'the year of accession to the kingdom,' and this was followed by the first, second, and subsequent years of rule. In Israel, on the other hand, there was no accession year as such, so that the length of rule was computed differently, with the year of accession being regarded as the “first year” of the king's reign. Therefore, the alleged contradiction actually supports a sixth century date for the book. Had the author Daniel been an unknown Jew in second century B.C., it is extremely unlikely he would have followed the obsolete Babylonian chronological system of computation in preference to his own Jewish method, which had the sanction of so important a person as the prophet Jeremiah.

Evil
Again, you seem to be placing great importance on those sources who you personally deem to be more intelligent. Can we please get back to quoting the Bible for proof of our points?

The tree in the Garden wasn’t the Tree of Evil, it was the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God created evil, 21st century men and women have knowledge of both. This knowledge means men and women can chose between doing one or the other. This decision results in men and women either doing good or doing evil. If a man does good, it’s because he chose to do so. If a man does evil, it’s because he chose to do so.

Bible Manipulation
Your “proof” that the Bible was manipulated is a theory people have about Daniel? Surely there’s something a bit more concrete... How would you respond to the fact that the Bible has remained unchanged for almost 2000 years and that even the ancient writings found on papyrus remain unchanged from later copies of the same? Given the massive number of people who have translated and copied it from paper to paper and book to book, from all over Europe, no serious errors have crept in. No one has managed to change the overall message of the Bible for thousands of years. This in itself is something to be pondered. What other religious book on the same scale as the Bible can claim the same?

God’s shape
I believe the Bible is the inspired word of God. So while John was just a man, he was a man inspired by God to write what he wrote. This is what I don’t really get about your arguments; if the people who wrote the Bible are merely men who wrote whatever they wanted to write without any direct guidance from God, why are we even having this conversation?

God often performed His creative work through His angels. Exod. 3:4-8 - Acts 7:30,35. Exod. 20:2 – Acts 7:38. Gen. 32:30 - Hosea 12:3-4. “Elohim” means “mighty ones”, the same description given to angels in Psalms 103:20.

Sediments
Are you familiar with giant floods? Let’s move onto something else. This topic is getting a bit cyclical.

The Flood
You missed my point: You're assuming anteaters were in South America prior to the Flood only because 21st century anteaters live in South America. But what about in 4000BC?

January 13, 2007 11:59 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

To trust in a human priesthood or to still offer animal sacrifices means that we do not accept the fullness of Christ's victory.

Yet you're trusting in what St Paul, a mere human, not even one of the twelve, wrote. I already told you what Jesus allegedly said.

I think that he was allowed to break Sabbath because he is considered God by mainstream Christianity which teaches that God is above the law.

This chunk?:

1In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom he made the universe. 3The Son is the radiance of God's glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word.

Would that mean that Jesus is God?

After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. 4So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.

Does the above mean that Jesus was once inferior to angels?

Work

Your argument and Aaron and Moses were “working” because they put a man in prison is ridiculous. Aaron was breathing, is that “work”? Moses was walking, is that “work”? No, God tells us exactly what “work” involved:

Exodus 16:27 – Work involves gathering food
Exodus 20:9 – Work is whatever duties, etc. one would normally do during the week.


Is cooking work? Is eating work? Is going to the bathroom work? Were Jews allowed to do the aforementioned on Sabbath? Is walking a man to jail work? Is sentencing a man to death work? Is executing a man work? Those are activities they would normally (heh) do during the week. Don't you think prison guards work? They're paid for walking around prisons halls. And what about judges, attorneys, etc.? Arresting, judging and executing a man implies way more work and more people than one man gathering wood.

Exodus 31:15 clearly states that any man who is found working on the Sabbath would be put to death. No excuses can be made for this man. If God had killed the man himself, you’d be wondering why He didn’t just get Aaron and Moses to do it.

No, actually I'm asking myself why God didn't kill the Israelites himself during the golden calf episode.

Why should God stop people from procreating?

So he didn't have to kill innocent newborns, children and animals during the Flood?

The problem with your view of God is that you’re attempting to ascribe human logic and human reasoning to explain Him away. “Unfair” and “injustice” are ineffective words when describing God because a) we’re not perfect, b) we can’t see the big picture and c) we don’t like taking orders so our view is naturally biased. Scripture presents God as a loving God who punishes those who incur His wrath. Since this is what it is, the key is not to incur God’s wrath by doing things contrary to His commandments. It’s like following the laws of the land: Don’t want to be put in jail? Don’t break the law.

The Biblegod has many inherently human flaws like jealousy, wrath, etc. Don't want to be killed by the loving Biblegod? Don't move a finger on Sabbath.

Millions of animals were innocent victims?????? You’re saying God’s cruel and evil because He killed animals??? Maybe you should stop eating burgers if it’s got you that upset.

God didn't kill all of those animals out of hunger, he killed them to vent his anger.

There are plenty of cows and chicken being bred for human consumption, humans are not trying to make them extinct either.

January 16, 2007 5:33 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Paul
You’re trusting that Paul is a saint… ☺ Why use “saint” if you think Paul was just some guy?

The Bible is the inspired word of God. Paul was just a man, yes, but what he wrote came from God and I trust in God’s word. This is a fundamental principle taught in Scripture. You’re saying Paul overthrew the law, I’ve asked for references.

Sabbath
You think Jesus was allowed to break the Sabbath? No, Jesus never broke the Sabbath. He was “born under the law” (of the Jews) which meant the Sabbath was still a day to be recognized even by Jesus. The problem was that the Jews and Pharisees were confused about what actions constituted “work” and therefore broke the Sabbath (see John 5:18). The people were accusing Jesus of breaking the Sabbath, which is why he had to continually and patiently explain what he was actually doing. For example, Mar 3:3-4 “And they watched him, whether he would heal him on the sabbath day; that they might accuse him. And he saith unto them, Is it lawful to do good on the sabbath days, or to do evil? to save life, or to kill? But they held their peace.”

Remember though, that as the verses I showed you before explain, the Sabbath was no longer mandatory after the death of Christ, after which the old law was made null and void.

Work
Geez, if you were in charge of the Sabbath, you’d have executed someone for rolling out of bed in the morning… Once again, work on the Sabbath involved only those things that would take one’s focus off God. The execution of a man guilty of breaking the Sabbath, at the behest of God, would have highlighted the importance in keeping it a sacred day. At the end of the day though, Moses and Aaron were following a direct commandment of God and no one was punished for this “so-called” work.

Golden Calf
Why God didn’t kill the people Himself is a question that will never be answered. It’s like wondering why God created elephants. Who knows and does it really matter?

Hebrews 1
No no, Jesus isn’t God ☺ The chunk you’re referring to is in Hebrews 1. The misunderstanding of what this verse is saying comes as a result of the Greek word “aion” translated “universe” in verse 2. In actuality, “aion” means “age”. For example, Luke 18:30 using the KJV “Who shall not receive manifold more in this present time, and in the world to come life everlasting.” And now a better translation from the NIV: “...will fail to receive many times as much in this age and, in the age to come, eternal life.” In other words, the reference to "he made the worlds" is referring to the new creation, not the old creation. This is made clear in Hebrews 2:5 "It is not to angels that he has subjected the world to come, about which we are speaking." Jesus is the creator of the this new world to come. The redeemed are described as a new creation, and Christ our creator. Christ will create "new heavens and a new earth", wherein dwells righteousness.

Yes, Jesus was absolutely made inferior to the angels. There’s the verse you provided and then there’s Hebrews 2:7 Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:”

The Flood
Who says the newborns and children killed during the Flood are doomed to an eternal death? We’re not the judge. It’s not our call to make either way. As for the animals, well, I’m sure they’re resting comfortably in animal heaven. :) Seriously though, I wouldn’t worry too much about them. An animal isn’t innocent any more then an animal is guilty. They’re non-entities when it comes to Christ’s judgment. Let the animals go…

Human Flaws
Jealousy and wrath are only flaws when they’re misused. Scripture says God is perfect so as far as that’s concerned, “flaw” and “God” don’t mix. For the third time, move a finger on the Sabbath, brush your teeth, roll of bed, gather some sticks, do whatever you want. The old law is done away with.

I once killed a mosquito out of anger. I think I also once broke a branch off a tree because I was angry. Am I cruel...?

January 17, 2007 10:09 AM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Hell
1. Luke 23:42-43. I’ll ask this question again: Where did Jesus go immediately after he died? Is the place that he went considered “paradise”? I’ve already given you an explanation about these verses and you chose not to refute them.


Wasn't I clear enough? I wrote that the Bible says Jesus promised the thief the two would be in paradise that same day. You quoted Matthew 6:10 out of context, that's the "Our Father" prayed by Jesus. Whose kingdom are you waiting for, Jesus' or YHWH's???? And Mat 5:5 is the Sermon on the Mount quoted from Ps. 37:11

What is Mat 5:3 about?
Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

Poor in spirit = Unbelievers?

Purgatory
You’ve already stated that hell and purgatory are inventions of man. What are we discussing if neither one of us believe they exist?


Yes, why are we discussing that? We reached a consensus already :) I wanted to know how your doctrine reconciles with that of Catholicism.

Scripture is quite clear that “no one has seen God”

Read again:

Gen. 32:30
And Jacob calleth the name of the place Peniel: for `I have seen God face unto face, and my life is delivered.

The apostles saw God
John 14:9
Jesus answered: "Don't you know me, Philip, even after I have been among you such a long time? Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father. How can you say, 'Show us the Father'?

but

John 6:46
No one has seen the Father except the one who is from God; only he has seen the Father.

Probable contradiction?

God the One and Only is at the Father's side? Is Jesus God?:

John 1:18
No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only,[a][b]who is at the Father's side, has made him known.

Sheol
I'm with you in that once people die they cease to exist. I was just commenting on the differing Christian views on what happens after death, I don't believe the dead will rise when Christ returns though.

It’s a prison because there ain’t no getting out. Once dead, always dead. Until Christ’s return, of course.

Yet people believe in long deceased saints performing miracles on them every now and then. That's just a comment no need to argue this ad infinitum.

The real nail in the proverbial coffin is that all those Christians who believe that hell is a place of suffering can offer no evidence for anyone ever going to heaven

Please read:

Luke 23:46
46Jesus called out with a loud voice, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit." When he had said this, he breathed his last.

Peter 3:18-19
18For Christ died for sins once for
all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God. He was put to death in the body but made alive by the Spirit, 19 through whom[a] also he went and preached to the spirits in prison.

Where did Jesus' spirit go? Paradise/Heaven? Hell? Both?

Scripture is quite clear that “no one has seen God” and that “no one has ascended to heaven”.

What about Elijah?
2 Kings 2:11
As they were walking along and talking together, suddenly a chariot of fire and horses of fire appeared and separated the two of them, and Elijah went up to heaven in a whirlwind.

What about Jesus? and (heh) St Dimas?

Claspers and Dolphin hands
Yeah, but you dared to write that no animal can copulate without hands to grab its mate. Claspers, at least in sharks, are made of cartilage, unable to become fossilized unlike Basilosauruses' hind limbs.

Transitional forms

Explain vestigial pelvises? Forget that, why not first explain exactly how whales evolved from land mammals and how the transitional animal was able to survive without a pelvis.

Pakicetus and Ambulocetus, a couple of the earliest whale ancestors, had pelvises as seen on http://www.edwardtbabinski.us/whales/evolution_of_whales/

I'm not paleontologist either, but I think that an animal like Basilosaurus survived without a pelvis because it didn't need one, being a fully aquatic animal its weight was supported by water like today's whales.

http://www.edwardtbabinski.us/whales/evolution_of_whales/ has many specimens other than Mesonychids.

Daniel

Please refer me to your source. Uhmmm.. forget it, I think I’ve found it: http://www.thechristadelphians.org/forums/index.php?s=3f2cfe6aaa90146f47fd8b29b9f9f42e&showtopic=7345&pid=223397&st=30&#entry223397

1. If the book had been forged by a Jew in the time of Antiochus, there is every reason to believe that he would have been careful to write it in as pure Hebrew as possible because that was the language in which the canonical books were written.

Yeah, why did Daniel do such a thing, mixing Aramaic with Hebrew if that would discredit him? Maybe “Daniel” didn’t write the Aramaic part. The chapters in Aramaic present a case for the view that these chapters once constituted an independent Aramaic book.


2. If the book was written under Antiochus, why are there so few Greek words in the text?

I'm going to speculate here since I can't read Hebrew nor Aramaic to spot any Greek word in Daniel. You know Jesus lived during the Roman Occupation of Judea, Galilea, Samaria, etc., yet he didn't speak Latin or Greek. What you said doesn't rule out the possibility that the author of Daniel didn't know the language of his enemies.

A Comentary on Daniel, Pg.21
The evidence for Greek influence on Daniel is too slight to prove anything. Conversely, the paucity of Greek influence cannot be taken as evidence for an early date because Greek loans are conspicuous by their absence also in the Dead Sea Scrolls. The date of the tales in Daniel must be established on other grounds.

3. The dialect of Aramaic found in the book of Daniel is most decidedly of eastern dialect, markedly different then the same dialect spoken in Israel around 165BC.

A Comentary, Pg.20
When S. R. Driver pronounced that Daniel exemplified Western Aramaic, he was assuming the Palestinian origin of the book. It’s now recognized that the classic distinction between Eastern and Western Aramaic only holds in the Christian era. Kutscher concludes that eastern features in the dialect don’t necessarily require eastern provenance, since the influence of the (eastern) chancery style was pervasive.


4. The word "herald" in Dan. 3:4 is of Old Iranian origin. [Iranische Beitrage I (Halle, 1930)] Just the use of this word alone means that the book had to have been written long before the 2nd century (because knowledge of it had been lost) and that the book of Daniel was not written in Israel.

English have a ton of words of Latin and French origin but that doesn’t mean that you live in Britannia under Hadrian’s or William the Conqueror’s rule.

A Comentary, Pg.19
Kitchen accepts 19 words as of Persian origin: counselor, certain, satrap (…) and herald. The last term is questionable, as it is often taken to reflect the Greek “kirnx” (…) Kirchen claimed that the Persian words in Daniel are Old Persian words prior to 300 B.C.E.c the Old Persian equivalent of many of these terms, however, are not extant, and several of these terms are reconstructed on the basis of later Persian forms. Kitchen observed that the administrative terms for counselors, etc., are predominantly Persian, not Greek, and that many of them were not understood by the Greek translators, this observation doesn’t necessarily require a pre-Hellenistic date for the extant text of Daniel, but it does weigh against the theory that the whole book originated in the second century. However, while a late 6th century date is compatible with the Persian loanwords, a later date is more probable because extensive linguistic borrowing doesn’t occur instantaneously. Persian loanwords are well attested in the Aramaic papyri of the 5th century.

5. It is noted even by liberal scholars that there is marked degree of correspondence between the books of Ezra and Daniel. Ezra wasn't written around 165BC.
I found something about a 4th Ezra, a Jewish apocalypse from the end of the first century C.E. Comments on Daniel, page 83


A Comentary on Daniel, Pg.85
The correspondences do not require that 4 Ezra was influenced by the Similitudes, rather they point to a shared tradition fo the interpretation of Daniel 7.

6. The very fact that the book was translated by Septuagint translators also tells us that the book could not have been written in 165 B.C.

The Pentateuch was translated for Ptolemy II, the Septuagint wasn't finished until the 1st Century B.C.

7. As for the “discrepancy” with when King Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem, Daniel is using the Babylonian system of dating the king's reign whereas Jeremiah is using the Israeli system of dating. In Babylon, the year in which the king ascended the throne was designated specifically as 'the year of accession to the kingdom,' and this was followed by the first, second, and subsequent years of rule. In Israel, on the other hand, there was no accession year as such, so that the length of rule was computed differently, with the year of accession being regarded as the “first year” of the king's reign. Therefore, the alleged contradiction actually supports a sixth century date for the book. Had the author Daniel been an unknown Jew in second century B.C., it is extremely unlikely he would have followed the obsolete Babylonian chronological system of computation in preference to his own Jewish method, which had the sanction of so important a person as the prophet Jeremiah.

I grew tired of typing.

http://www.infidels.org/library/magazines/tsr/1998/4/984bad.html
The writer of Daniel claimed that he and others were taken captive in Jerusalem by Nebuchadnezzar in the "third year of the reign of Jehoiakim" and carried away to Babylon (1:1-3), where he was selected to be educated in "the learning and the tongue of the Chaldeans" (v:4). Jehoiakim was king of Judah from 609 to 598 B. C. (Eerdmans Bible Dictionary, 1987, p. 559), so if Nebuchadnezzar took him captive in the "third year of Jehoiakim," this would have occurred in 606 B. C., which was a year before Nebuchadnezzar became king. From Babylonian records previously mentioned, we know that Nebuchadnezzar engaged the Egyptians under the command of Pharaoh Necho II and defeated them at Carchemish in 605. Later that year, his father died, and he succeeded to the throne. The next year he sacked the Philistine city of Ashkelon for refusing to pay tribute to him, and from 604 to 601, he was kept busy securing the Egyptian front. He suffered a setback in 601 at the hands of Pharaoh Hophra, but by 598, he had recovered sufficiently to lay siege to Jerusalem. The Bible records this siege (2 Kings 24:10), and says that it was at this time that captives from Jerusalem, along with treasures from the temple, were taken to Babylon (2 Kings 24:13-16). This siege of Jerusalem happened not in the third year of Jehoiakim but in his last year. The Bible is unclear about what happened to him, whether he was killed during the siege or captured and taken to Babylon. Jeremiah 22:19 predicted that he would be "buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem," but 2 Chronicles 36:6 claims that Nebuchadnezzar "bound him in fetters" and took him to Jerusalem. Second Kings 24:6 merely says that Jehoiakim "slept with his fathers and Jehoiachin his son reigned in his stead," after which the chapter describes Jehoiachin's surrender to Nebuchadnezzar, who then carried him, the royal family, and other "chief men of the land" to Babylon. So both biblical and Babylonian records indicate that Jerusalem fell to Nebuchadnezzar in the last year of Jehoiakim's reign and not in his third year as the writer of Daniel indicated. It seems rather strange that this man, who possessed all of the great wisdom claimed in this book, did not even know what year he was taken captive to Babylon. It's reasonable to think that someone living four centuries later could have been confused about when Nebuchadnezzar captured Jerusalem and took captives back to Babylon, but it's hard to believe that one of these captives would not have known when it happened.

You provided me with a link to a student's webpage with the Tanakh's codification date, I had some trouble finding the specific date for the Tanakh compilation, this is what I got:
http://home.iprimus.com.au/epe/sci&rel/N12.html:
A. General formation of Tanach
1. Torah codified probably by 400 BCE (probably in Babylon).
2. Prophets seem to have taken shape by 200 BCE
3. Writings had a final form by Council of Jamnia in 90 ACE.


God created evil, 21st century men and women have knowledge of both.

Cool, that’s what I wanted to read.

What other religious book on the same scale as the Bible can claim the same?

The Koran?

I believe the Bible is the inspired word of God. So while John was just a man, he was a man inspired by God to write what he wrote.

A man writing what God wrote or what Jesus wrote? I don’t remember Jesus writing any Gospel or YHWH writing Exodus.

This is what I don’t really get about your arguments; if the people who wrote the Bible are merely men who wrote whatever they wanted to write without any direct guidance from God, why are we even having this conversation?

They didn’t need God’s direct guidance, just traditions, previously written manuscripts, etc. Islam is a plagiarism of Christianity and Judaism, for example.

God often performed His creative work through His angels. Exod. 3:4-8 - Acts 7:30,35. Exod. 20:2 – Acts 7:38. Gen. 32:30 - Hosea 12:3-4. “Elohim” means “mighty ones”, the same

Are angels gods since they can create life from the mud? Again I'm confused by Elohim, once I read Elohim was used as singular by Hebrews, now you're telling that it's a plural noun.

Genesis 3:22
And the LORD God said, "The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil.


Ok, man was not created by God but by his angels. What are their names so that we can worship them? Since God didn’t created us, does that mean that God didn’t has the right to kill nearly all humankind in the Flood?

Exodus 3:4 and Jehovah seeth that he hath turned aside to see, and God calleth unto him out of the midst of the bush, and saith, `Moses, Moses;' and he saith, `Here [am] I.

No angels there.

Acts 7:30
and forty years having been fulfilled, there appeared to him in the wilderness of mount Sinai a messenger of the Lord, in a flame of fire of a bush


Misquoting of Exodus 3:4?

Gen 32:30
30And Jacob calleth the name of the place Peniel: for `I have seen God face unto face, and my life is delivered;'


I'm confused with this, I have also read that Jacob wrestled with an angel instead of God. Was God amongst the angels or messengers that visited Jacob?

Ah, and since angel means “messenger” these messengers can be human too, like you said before? Maybe man was created by man, then what’s the deal with humans becoming like humans (angels)?

Are you familiar with giant floods? Let’s move onto something else. This topic is getting a bit cyclical.

Yes, there’s one related in a book called the Atra Hasis, closely resembling Noah’s but instead of YHWH it features like 3 Gods, the Godhead named Anu who couldn’t bear the noise humankind did while copulating, Enki Lord of the Apsu who loved humankind, and Enlil Enki’s brother.

The Flood
You missed my point: You're assuming anteaters were in South America prior to the Flood only because 21st century anteaters live in South America. But what about in 4000BC?


I told you that no fossils of giant anteaters (Myrmecophaga tridactyla) have been found in Asia.

January 17, 2007 3:02 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

Aye! This conversation is gonna take forever.

Sabbath
You think Jesus was allowed to break the Sabbath? No, Jesus never broke the Sabbath. He was “born under the law” (of the Jews) which meant the Sabbath was still a day to be recognized even by Jesus.


What you're saying is that Jesus didn't broke Sabbath yet you feel free to broke it because something Paul wrote. Jesus resurrected, does that mean that Mosaic law resurrected too? Jesus had 40 days before going to Heaven, but I don't remember whether or not the Gospels make him say that he abolished the Old Law.

Golden Calf
Why God didn’t kill the people Himself is a question that will never be answered.


Because there was no God? Maybe. And notice how Moses placates the angry God, i.e. a mere human influencing the all-powerful maker of the Universe. Moses could made YHWH change his mind but he didn't dare to speak to his own people because he was slow of speech and of a slow tongue (Exodus 4:10-17) so he had to use Aaron.

John 1
1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2He was with God in the beginning.
3Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood[a] it.


The Word was God and the Word was made flesh, How could Jesus be inferior to angels if he was with God in the begging and through him all things were made, even humans?

The Flood
Who says the newborns and children killed during the Flood are doomed to an eternal death?


I said that newborns and children unfairly died along with their "evil" parents during the Flood.

An animal isn’t innocent any more then an animal is guilty. They’re non-entities when it comes to Christ’s judgment. Let the animals go…

Heh, now you're having a laugh at my expense :) it's good to know that you still have sense of humor.

Human Flaws
Jealousy and wrath are only flaws when they’re misused. Scripture says God is perfect so as far as that’s concerned, “flaw” and “God” don’t mix.


What about repentance?

Exodus 32:14
14and Jehovah repenteth of the evil which He hath spoken of doing to His people.


I once killed a mosquito out of anger. I think I also once broke a branch off a tree because I was angry. Am I cruel...?

How could you!? Don't you know animals feel pain? A mosquito is one of God's creatures, for Pete's sake!

January 17, 2007 5:27 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Okay, I'm confused!! It would REALLY help me if you could explain the extent of your religious beliefs. Sometimes you're discounting the Bible, other times you're discounting the people in the Bible, other times you're defending Catholic beliefs and even other times you're discounting the existence of God.

Help!

January 17, 2007 10:04 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

No answers for the easiest set of questions yet...?

January 21, 2007 8:14 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

I'm an apostate.

You surprised me with your unorthodox beliefs, I tried to reconcile them with my previous ones in order to understand you.

What's the set of questions that I still have to answer?

January 24, 2007 4:08 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Do you believe the Bible is the inspired word of God?

January 24, 2007 7:49 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

I don't believe the Bible is the inspired word of God.

January 25, 2007 4:06 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

I'm at a loss to understand why you've gone through so much trouble to refute my beliefs by quoting from a book you don't believe is divinely inspired. What do you care about heaven or hell or Adam or sin or Jesus or Paul or Daniel or OT commandments? You've been arguing all this time simply for the sake of arguing and I find this shameful.

It took you so long to answer the very first question I posted here because you wanted to see how far you could string someone along before they snapped. Is that it?

Had I known your views on the Bible, I wouldn't have wasted my time discussing and defending doctrine with a person who doesn't care one way or another.

January 25, 2007 7:36 PM  
Anonymous Jacques said...

I answered your first question last because I thought you could dismiss me for being an unbeliever.

I genuinely became interested and I've learned a lot by discussing with you. I'd like to thank you for having this conversation with me, I don't think this was a waste of time.

January 27, 2007 7:35 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

I'm still in the dark why you care about Bible doctrines and why you choose to argue them if 1. We don't have a common foundation of belief (the Bible), and 2. You're an "unbeliever".

Kind of makes future discussions difficult, if not impossible because quoting Scripture is pointless. No?

January 28, 2007 12:08 AM  
Anonymous jason said...

Hello? Are you there?

March 27, 2007 6:55 PM  

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