1. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    19 May '09 14:571 edit
    FMF,

    I have moved to this discussion from the Koran verses the Bible to its own space. I think you wanted make comments about Revelation and your frustration with my references to it.

    Here is a place where you and I can talk about Revelation exclusively.

    Here was my last post to you:
    You citicize me for knowing a bible book "by rote". I think if you're going to discuss it, or criticize it, you should be familiar with it. No?


    ===========================
    I question the validity of "John"'s vision and writing. Your comeback seems to be "John"'s writing is valid because he had no doubt whatsoever that his writing was valid.
    ================================

    I was drawing a contrast between Muhammed's attitute and that of John's per se.

    Why do you question the validity of John's writing of Revelation then ?

    Say, as compared to what? Are you saying "This biblical book I regard as valid disclosure from God. But Revelation I do not regard as valid disclosure from God."

    You said something about "corporate" motives or some such accusation. Explain that.
  2. SubscriberFMF
    Main Poster
    This Thread
    Joined
    28 Oct '05
    Moves
    29835
    19 May '09 17:00
    Originally posted by jaywill
    Why do you question the validity of John's writing of Revelation then?
    Why do you assert that it is valid?
  3. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    19 May '09 18:132 edits
    Originally posted by FMF
    Why do you assert that it is valid?
    Do you assert that the default position is that it should not be regarded as a revelation of God?

    Why is that the default position ? I think you should not be bothered to simply answer what I first asked you.

    Do you mean that Matthew's Gospel you regard as a valid revelation but the book of Revelation you do not regard as a valid revelation ?

    My belief is that the 66 books are the inspired word of God as God's revelation. That is my given.

    If you don't think ANY book of the Bible is God's revelation than this discussion is the wrong one. For that would be a discussion on whether or not God has spoken to man by a revelatory book at all.

    If your position is that no revelation of God has been given at all then as far as I am concerned that is the end of this thread. If you think there are some books which are revelatory but John's Revelation is not one of them, then I ask you why you don't think Revelation is one of them?
  4. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    19 May '09 18:17
    FMF, I do not intend to show you up as wrong. I do intend to explain why what seems a problem to you may not be a problem to me.
  5. SubscriberFMF
    Main Poster
    This Thread
    Joined
    28 Oct '05
    Moves
    29835
    20 May '09 00:39
    Originally posted by jaywill
    If your position is that no revelation of God has been given at all then as far as I am concerned that is the end of this thread. If you think there are some books which are revelatory but John's Revelation is not one of them, then I ask you why you don't think Revelation is one of them?
    So the premise of this thread is that you cannot recall any of the things I posted before and that I have to type them all out again?
  6. Cape Town
    Joined
    14 Apr '05
    Moves
    52945
    20 May '09 05:45
    Originally posted by jaywill
    Do you assert that the default position is that it should not be regarded as a revelation of God?

    ...

    My belief is that the 66 books are the inspired word of God as God's revelation. That is my given.
    I am curious, do you have any reasons or not? Do you simply trust the people who chose those 66 books for you, or have you read any of the other books and have your own reasons for thinking the 66 are special?
  7. SubscriberFMF
    Main Poster
    This Thread
    Joined
    28 Oct '05
    Moves
    29835
    20 May '09 05:51
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Do you simply trust the people who chose those 66 books for you, or have you read any of the other books and have your own reasons for thinking the 66 are special?
    I have read somewhere that there were as many as 70 Gospels written. Is that right?
  8. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    20 May '09 14:401 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    I am curious, do you have any reasons or not? Do you simply trust the people who chose those 66 books for you, or have you read any of the other books and have your own reasons for thinking the 66 are special?
    My reason did not come suddenly at one time. I did not in one moment decide that the entire Bible was the inspired word of God.

    When I first met the Lord Jesus for weeks I would not read the Bible. I read philosophy and theology books. Eventually I humble myself to approach the four gospels.

    I had a big filter which I intended to "weed out" the things I did want to regard as valid. Gradually I noticed that Jesus took the Old Testament seriously. That more than anything else caused me to open my mind to Genesis.

    So accepting the whole Bible as God's word was for me a gradual process of opening my mind and heart to it.

    I eventually came to believe that it all stands together or all falls together as one product. The whole book gives me life. The whole book conveys the spiritual life to me which I first encountered in the priovacy of my living room the night I called on the name of Jesus.

    When you find the source of the food and comfort, you return to it. What I encountered in calling on Jesus I also definitely encountered in all the books of the Bible.
  9. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    21 May '09 01:32
    Since I made some typos which I cannot now correct I will repeat a little.

    I came to the Bible reluctantly weeks or months after having an experience with Jesus Christ.

    I came to the Bible with a bg mental "filter" in which I was going to filter out as not valid, things which I didn't believe or had a problem with.

    As I read through the Gospels, I noticed that Jesus took the Old Testament seriously. I decided that Jesus' integrity could not be questioned. And if something was good enough for Him it must be good enough for me.

    But I was real concerned about Origins and Creation and things like that found in the book of Genesis. So I got a few comentaries which I hoped would help me to resolve conflicts between what I thought I knew about science and the story of Genesis.

    None of them were vey helpful. But eventually I read a book called Earth's Earliest Ages by G.H. Pember. He was a more thorough teacher and his logic was very convincing. I said to myself "Now this makes some sense."

    Pember helped me to go into the original language as much as permitted from a layman's standpoint who did not read or write ancient Hebrew. Pember helped me to see exactly what WAS said and what WAS NOT said.

    This carefulness helped me also to realize the verbal inspiration of the Bible. Each phrase and each word was sovereignly chosen by God. God's oversight mysteriously governed what the prophets said and even how exactly they put it.

    It wasn't long after this that I opened up to the whole rest of the Bible. Though there were some things which I wished were not written there.

    Openeing to the whole Bible was a gradual process. And also I learned to discover which commentaries were useful and which were inferior.

    It seemed that most of the helpful and spiritually healthy commentaries were 19th or early 20th century. I think the quality of Christian writing went down hill. I got a lot of help from the Brethren teachers.

    The biggest help came from Watchman Nee and Witness Lee, Chinese Christian teachers. It could be that being from mainland China they were from "virgin soil". Meaning that they were not plagued by some old erroneous traditional ideas of Christiandom. They had a fresh outlook and amazing insight.

    Of course reading the Bible itself was indispensible. For spiritual nourishment and enlightenment there is nothing which can replace the Bible itself.
  10. England
    Joined
    15 Nov '03
    Moves
    33497
    22 May '09 13:57
    Originally posted by jaywill
    FMF, I do not intend to show you up as wrong. I do intend to explain why what seems a problem to you may not be a problem to me.
    first thing i ask is who is john??
    as not one of the followers was called john, but the baptist, and he got it in the neck before christ.
    the 66 books you mention were put together about 500ad others under concideration were left out.
    As for revelations you want to know about, there is a secret not written down but mentioned and if you put in Daniel you may get some better understanding,.
    pray brethren you seek the knowledge and god grants
  11. Joined
    07 Oct '08
    Moves
    6236
    23 May '09 09:08
    Originally posted by jaywill

    ...
    As I read through the Gospels, I noticed that Jesus took the Old Testament seriously. I decided that Jesus' integrity could not be questioned. And if something was good enough for Him it must be good enough for me.
    ...
    Pember helped me to go into the original language as much as permitted from a layman's standpoint who did not read or write ancient Hebrew. Pember helped me to see exactly what WAS said and what WAS NOT said.
    1. The 'Old Testament' can only refer to the testament which Moses made with God - the texts themselves cannot be 'The Old Testament'. Allow me to elaborate.

    The Jewish Cannon was not actually set even by the time of the man called Jesus. Rather Rabbis, Priests, scholars, and gentry would possess libraries of scrolls and texts; much the sme as one might have a poetry/history collection today. There was a common theme in such collections - the history of Israel, and the ways of God.

    In the first to third centuries BC, a tranlation was made of 45 of these scolls into Greek - the Septuagint - thus producing the first vague 'canon'. Though the Jews at the time did not the suggest that this was difinitive or complete.

    The greek septuagint was used by the early church, and when the gospels and other new testament texts, quote the so called old testament, they tend to quote the Greek. However, this test is not the one used in most bibles today. Most bibles actually derive the old testament translation from the Masoretic Text, a composition made in Hebrew between the 7 - 10 ceturies AD, by Jewish scholars. It excludes some of the books of the septuagint and in places the meaning differs; though it was regarded as more authorative by many of the protestant reformers, purely because it was written in Hebrew rather than greek.

    However, more recently, the Dead Sea Scrolls have been discovered. these are a collection of pre-Jesus texts, again relating to the ways of God and Jewish history. Among them are numerous texts contained neither in the septuagint not the masoretic text - and yet these can be rightly be classed as texts pertaining to the Old Testament. Where discovered texts overlap with those included in the so called 'old testament' canon, they tent to correlate more in meaning with the septuagint than the masoretic text.

    My point is that the old Testament texts are in no way diffinitive, and were still being added to at the time of Jesus. the Jewish authorities only really decided to close seal the canon in response to the pseudo-jewish texts produced by the christian movements. However they do have a common theme - the history of Israel, future revelation, and revelation of god - the focal point of which is the Mosaic testament.

    2. I suggest that Jesus himself did not regard the old testament as difinitive, rather it was the tradition in which he was trained. You say you studied philosophy, you will be familiar with the Platonic dialogues. Have you noticed that though Socrates questions and doubts and reforms everything, there are some principles which are concrete, which he does not touch, which act as the corner stone of all he says:
    those principles are thoughts found in the Greek poets.
    At every stage he refers back to the peots and traditions; in much the same way jesus uses the old testament tradition in which to base his own teaching.

    Indeed, if we look at an authentic gospel, such as Thomas, we notice that he uses different language when he spoke to Greeeks from when h spoke to Jews; that is, he doesn't refer to his Jewish tradition, because this of course means nothing to greeks or romans.

    I suggest that the authors of the 'old testament' texts are comparable to our own poets - in my case Chaucer Shakespeare, Spenser, Jonhson, Donne, Milton, Dyden &c.

    Indeed, in some Jespects Jesus was quite critical of the Jewish leaders who clung to every word of the Law (tradition) without genuine regard for god.

    Jesus came to 'complete the Law'. the jews were concerned with rules and rituals and suchlike - Jesus was not. His concern was love of God - the right inward state of mind out of which right action will arise. To see the essence of what he 'added' to the Law, I must refer the reader to the Teachings of Buddha. the two are remarkably similar.

    This testament - the new testament - that of genuine love for God - encompasses and replaces that of Moses, that of comandments and custom. 'The covenant of my blood' - to graps the true 'new testament' message, one must consider what Jesus' blood stands for.

    3. As FMF says, there are also numerous Gospels. The new testament texts are even less homogenious than the old testament ones. Henry Chadwick's History of the Early Church provides interesting insight into the conflicts within the church - they are too many to mention here. i would suggest though that the VAST MAJORITY of litriture writen about Jesus, heretical or otherwise, has been destroyed and will never be recovered.

    The New Testament canon was pieced toether in response to marcion. Marcion renounced the importance of the old testament traditon claiming Jesus had nothing to do with Mosaic tradtion. he produced the first christian canon composed of Luke, Acts (which was part of Luke at the time), and the epistle of Paul with all the mosaic-tradition references deleted. the orthodox christian responded with there own canon, which looked something like our own.

    Of course the gnostic tradition showed a completed different aspect of Jesus from the Orthodox one. Most of the gnostic gospels and texts have been lost or destroyed.

    4. regarding the revelation of John: it was a very narrow decisin between this and the Revelation of Peter (a similar style text) based on the marginally greater popularity of John.

    5. the book of mormon challenges the reader:
    And when ye shall receive these things, i would exhort you that ye would ask god, the eternal father, if these things are not true.
    (personally, in the case of mormon, i do not believe it is) Presumably, if you believe the 66 biblical books to be authorative, you could apply this test and recognise a biblical passage hidden amongst non-biblical passages, becasue you could recognise the Word of God in it?

    6. The letter killeth but the spirit giveth life. I rever any text which provides insight into God, or into myself; or which provides inspiration for my livelihood. You can tell a tree by its fruits.

    The Word became man. I find it easier to believe that the spirit enterd the flesh, than that the man-made letter entered the flesh.
  12. Cape Town
    Joined
    14 Apr '05
    Moves
    52945
    23 May '09 10:25
    Originally posted by jaywill
    I eventually came to believe that it all stands together or all falls together as one product. The whole book gives me life. The whole book conveys the spiritual life to me which I first encountered in the priovacy of my living room the night I called on the name of Jesus.

    When you find the source of the food and comfort, you return to it. What I encountered in calling on Jesus I also definitely encountered in all the books of the Bible.
    So if you had been given a copy of the Bible with say the Apocrypha included, you would have believed them to be the word of God?
    Am I right that the key element in every book that leads you to believe it is the word of God is that it happened to be included in the collection currently known as the 'Bible'? In other words you trust the decisions made by those who chose the books.
  13. SubscriberFMF
    Main Poster
    This Thread
    Joined
    28 Oct '05
    Moves
    29835
    23 May '09 10:33
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    In other words you trust the decisions made by those who chose the books.
    Those decisions and the people who made them were, for want of a slightly better expression, Corporate Christianity.
  14. Joined
    07 Jan '08
    Moves
    34575
    25 May '09 13:57
    Originally posted by FMF
    Those decisions and the people who made them were, for want of a slightly better expression, Corporate Christianity.
    Or, to be more precise, orthodox Christianity.

    Irenaeus saw an opportunity to quash other Christian sects and took advantage of it. By creating an 'official' canon centered around Johnian theology and using the structure of priests and deacons, the early orthodox church was able to nearly obliterate all other practices and canon, such as that of the Gnostics.

    They nearly succeeded. I'm always amazed that the writings at Nag Hammadi ever survived.

    The books in their present canon were first proposed by Athanasius, that we know of. Even then, Revelations was a book that was hotly debated in terms of whether it should be included in the canon.

    To me, Revelations is not terribly essential to an understanding of Christ. It was written for an audience of long ago that has long since perished and has no application today, other than metaphorically.
  15. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    25 May '09 14:132 edits
    Originally posted by stoker
    first thing i ask is who is john??
    as not one of the followers was called john, but the baptist, and he got it in the neck before christ.
    the 66 books you mention were put together about 500ad others under concideration were left out.
    As for revelations you want to know about, there is a secret not written down but mentioned and if you put in Daniel you may get some better understanding,.
    pray brethren you seek the knowledge and god grants
    =====================
    first thing i ask is who is john??
    ===========================


    It is not John the Baptist who wrote Revelation. It was John of the twelve disciples.

    As with most things this is contested. And I will not be spending a lot of time to defend that the author of Revelation is the same author of the Gospel of John.

    Prepare yourself to hear that John of the 12 disciples did not write Revelation.

    =============================
    the 66 books you mention were put together about 500ad others under concideration were left out.
    ==============================


    I regard canonization as discovered and not assigned. I don't believe that the books of the canon had that right bestowed upon them. Rather they had that characteristic discovered about them.

    The canon is not an authoritative list of books. It is a list of authoritative books.

    The ancient people of God did not decide which books would enjoy an authoritative status. They discovered which books inherantly had this authoritative status.

    ===================================
    As for revelations you want to know about, there is a secret not written down but mentioned and if you put in Daniel you may get some better understanding,.
    pray brethren you seek the knowledge and god grants
    ================================
Back to Top