1. Illinois
    Joined
    20 Mar '07
    Moves
    6266
    25 Dec '07 09:222 edits
    "[Philosophers], in proportion to their superior wisdom (in that they understood the error of false religion) rendered themselves so much the more foolish, for they did not realize that some religion was true... Thus, philosophers have reached the height of human wisdom, in understanding that which does not exist. But they have failed in attaining the power of saying what truly does exist. It is a well-known saying of Cicero: "I wish that I could as easily find out the truth as I can refute false things.""

    ~Lactantius (c. 304-313)

    _____________________

    "[The philosophers] knocked at the door of truth. But they did not enter."

    ~Tertullian (c. 210)

    _____________________

    "We [Christians] are philosophers--not in words--but in deeds! We do not speak great things; we live them!"

    ~Cyprian (c. 250)
  2. Donationbbarr
    Chief Justice
    Center of Contention
    Joined
    14 Jun '02
    Moves
    17381
    25 Dec '07 09:53
    Petitions for a forum devoted to quotations should be posted in the Site Ideas forum.
  3. Standard memberSwissGambit
    Caninus Interruptus
    2014.05.01
    Joined
    11 Apr '07
    Moves
    92274
    25 Dec '07 16:53
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    "[Philosophers], in proportion to their superior wisdom (in that they understood the error of false religion) rendered themselves so much the more foolish, for they did not realize that some religion was true... Thus, philosophers have reached the height of human wisdom, in understanding that which does not exist. But they have failed in attainin ...[text shortened]... -but in deeds! We do not speak great things; we live them!"

    ~Cyprian (c. 250)
    That avatar of yours is messing with my head. I'm starting to picture the bird taking a dump on the guy's shirt.
  4. Joined
    27 Sep '06
    Moves
    9651
    25 Dec '07 17:13
    Originally posted by epiphinehas
    "[Philosophers], in proportion to their superior wisdom (in that they understood the error of false religion) rendered themselves so much the more foolish, for they did not realize that some religion was true... Thus, philosophers have reached the height of human wisdom, in understanding that which does not exist. But they have failed in attainin ...[text shortened]... -but in deeds! We do not speak great things; we live them!"

    ~Cyprian (c. 250)
    It's funny how the dis-believer is unable to recognise truth when they see it.


    Jas 3:13 Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him shew out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom.
  5. Hmmm . . .
    Joined
    19 Jan '04
    Moves
    22131
    25 Dec '07 17:44
    Christ is the first-born of God, his Logos, in whom all people share. That is what we have learned and what we bear witness to ... All who have lived in accordance with the Logos are Christians, even if they have been reckoned atheists, as among the Greeks Socrates, Heraclitus and the like.

    —St. Justin Martyr (100-165 C.E.; my italics)
  6. Joined
    27 Sep '06
    Moves
    9651
    25 Dec '07 18:11
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Christ is the first-born of God, his Logos, in whom all people share. That is what we have learned and what we bear witness to ... All who have lived in accordance with the Logos are Christians, even if they have been reckoned atheists, as among the Greeks Socrates, Heraclitus and the like.

    —St. Justin Martyr (100-165 C.E.; my italics)
    My friend, it has and always will be the purpose and intent by the misinformed and unbelievers to try to diminish who Jesus is.

    God became a man. No amount of effort to change the clear meaning of scripture will ever change that fact.

    Even logic and reason needs that Jesus be the incarnate creator. Without that central truth everything else fails.
  7. Donationbbarr
    Chief Justice
    Center of Contention
    Joined
    14 Jun '02
    Moves
    17381
    25 Dec '07 18:561 edit
    Originally posted by josephw

    Even logic and reason needs that Jesus be the incarnate creator. Without that central truth everything else fails.
    I breathlessly await your demonstration of this claim.
  8. Hmmm . . .
    Joined
    19 Jan '04
    Moves
    22131
    25 Dec '07 22:54
    Originally posted by josephw
    My friend, it has and always will be the purpose and intent by the misinformed and unbelievers to try to diminish who Jesus is.

    God became a man. No amount of effort to change the clear meaning of scripture will ever change that fact.

    Even logic and reason needs that Jesus be the incarnate creator. Without that central truth everything else fails.
    Justin was one of the earliest post-apostolic fathers, who was informed not only by the scriptural texts, but also by the oral teachings (“tradition” ) handed down by the apostles. Modern Protestantism sometimes seems to me to be a different religion altogether from the Christianity of the post-apostolic period (circa 100-600/800 C.E.). How it interprets scriptural texts, for example, is often vastly different (not that the early church was univocal).

    Jesus was a unique, but not exclusive, manifestation (incarnation) of the divine Logos; and is hence called the Christ (ho Christos). The Greeks—who never lost the original language, and who could almost be said today to order their groceries in the same language as that in which the NT texts were written (with due allowances for developed differences in modern Greek from the koine)—continually point out that the word translated as “only begotten” means, and has always meant, unique, but not exclusive. Hence St. Gregory of Nyssa on incarnation—

    “That God should have clothed himself in our nature is a fact that should not seem strange or extravagant to minds that do not form too paltry an idea of reality...that God is all in all; that he clothes himself with the universe, and at the same time contains it and dwells in it.

    “If then all is in him and he is in all, why blush for the faith that teaches us that one day God was born in the human condition, God who still today exists in humanity?

    “Indeed, if the presence of God in us does not take the same form now as it did then, we can at least agree in recognizing that he is in us today no less than he was then.”

    —St. Gregory of Nyssa (4th century; my bold)


    In addition, a reading of the opening verses of the Gospel of John, in the Greek, reveals that everything that exists in the physical universe is viewed as being begotten by/through the Logos, which is of God, and which is God. It is this understanding of Logos and incarnation that folks like Justin and Gregory were articulating.

    I doubt that it was Luther’s intention, when he formulated his sola scriptura as a counter to Roman Catholic ecclesial authority, to undermine the first 5 to 7 centuries of post-apostolic Christianity—but that often seems to have been the result.
  9. Donationkirksey957
    Outkast
    With White Women
    Joined
    31 Jul '01
    Moves
    91452
    25 Dec '07 23:00
    Originally posted by vistesd
    Justin was one of the earliest post-apostolic fathers, who was informed not only by the scriptural texts, but also by the oral teachings (“tradition” ) handed down by the apostles. Modern Protestantism sometimes seems to me to be a different religion altogether from the Christianity of the post-apostolic period (circa 100-600/800 C.E.). How it interprets s ...[text shortened]... st 5 to 7 centuries of post-apostolic Christianity—but that often seems to have been the result.
    I will make an attempt to turn my recollection of this true event into a Zen story. The master asked his student if he were Jesus. The student, incredulous, said, "Well , of course not." The master replied, "That's too bad."
  10. Hmmm . . .
    Joined
    19 Jan '04
    Moves
    22131
    25 Dec '07 23:23
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I will make an attempt to turn my recollection of this true event into a Zen story. The master asked his student if he were Jesus. The student, incredulous, said, "Well , of course not." The master replied, "That's too bad."
    Yes. Wonderful! A Zen Buddhist would certainly affirm that story. There are “Zen Christians” who would affirm it. Based on my reading, a lot of the post-apostolic fathers would affirm it as well.

    I can’t lay my hands on a source without some research, but my recall is that the name “Jesus” often came to be used as a reference, not just to that singular incarnation of the Logos, but to the pre-existing Logos itself; while some used “Jesus” strictly for that historical event, and used “the Christ” to refer also to the pre-existing Logos. I think some of that kind of stuff got batted around in all the debate that led up to the Definition of Chalcedon. So, some early Christians might more readily affirm your story if you said “the Christ”, rather than Jesus.

    But the point you’re making cuts underneath those theological niceties to a deeper level. It also cuts underneath Buddhist philosophical niceties as well.
  11. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    25 Dec '07 23:502 edits
    John's gospel says that the ones who received Him (the Son) were given authority to become children of God:

    "But as many as received Him, to them He gave the authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name." (John 1:12)

    Immediately after this sentence He draws up distinctions qualifying just how this new birth has come upon the future children of God. John says that such a birth is not of three things and of one thing:

    "Who were begotten not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (v.13)

    1. "not of blood" - one cannot become one of the children of God simply because one's parents were born of God. The new birth cannot be transmitted by any natural blood relationship. No one is simply born naturally and therefore is ALSO born spiritually because of who his or her parents were.

    2.) "nor of the will of the flesh" - In this case "the flesh" denotes the fallen man. The man who has been corrupted since the fall of Adam. In the days of Noah's flood God said that the end of all flesh had come before Him. The flesh here is the fallen and sin currupted man who cannot will himself to become one of the children of God. He cannot make himself be born of God.

    3.) "nor of the will of man" Whereas "the flesh" in this passage refers to fallen and corrupted man, "nor of man" refers to that residual good part of man. Remember God created man and declared that His creation was very good. Even though we are sinners there is nonetheless something left over in us by God's creation which is good.

    The good part of man cannot will the second birth to become one of the children of God.

    4.) "but of God" refers to the will of God. The Begetting Father alone can cause the new birth to occur. Thankfully He will do so if we come to Him asking Him. Even if we come to Him RECEIVING the resurrection Lord and Savior Jesus. In our act of receiving Jesus into our spirit - the Begetting Father will cause us to enter into a realm which we cannot bring upon ourselves. God causes us to be born again. And with the birth the "genes" as it were of God come into us. Our future must be to develop into sons of God. We are granted the authority to become children of God. And children matured become sons of God.

    Whatever Justin Martyr had in mind, the birth of children of God with the divine life of God is not cause by natural birth, natural descent, natural willing of the fallen man, or natural willing of the good aspect of the created man.

    It is of the Father alone upon those who received His Son.
  12. Donationbbarr
    Chief Justice
    Center of Contention
    Joined
    14 Jun '02
    Moves
    17381
    26 Dec '07 00:251 edit
    Originally posted by jaywill
    John's gospel says that the ones who received Him (the Son) were given authority to become children of God:

    [b]"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name." (John 1:12)


    Immediately after this sentence He draws up distinctions qualifying just how this new birth has c ated man.

    It is of the Father alone upon those who received His Son.[/b]
    It is clear that you think that sincerely asking for salvation is sufficient for attaining it, since God grants such sincere requests. Do you also think that sincerely asking for salvation is necessary for attaining it? If so, what does "sincerely asking" amount to? Does it require an utterance, a thought, or what?
  13. Hmmm . . .
    Joined
    19 Jan '04
    Moves
    22131
    26 Dec '07 00:45
    Originally posted by jaywill
    John's gospel says that the ones who received Him (the Son) were given authority to become children of God:

    [b]"But as many as received Him, to them He gave the authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name." (John 1:12)


    Immediately after this sentence He draws up distinctions qualifying just how this new birth has c ...[text shortened]... ated man.

    It is of the Father alone upon those who received His Son.[/b]
    I’m not sure that anything I say here is in contradiction to what you’ve written, but perhaps adds what (at least from the perspective of Orthodox—capital “O”—Christianity) might be seen as necessary nuance.

    (1) From the Orthodox perspective, the fall (however one interprets that) did not affect humanity’s—and every person’s—being in the image of God. The image is unimpaired. What is impaired is the ability to realize that image in terms of the “likeness.”

    (2) In John 1:3 (and following verses) the word often translated as “came into being” is egeneto, from ginomai. It is the same word translated elsewhere as “beget”, and is not the same as the words normally translated as “create” or “make” or “form.” It suggests a more intimate relationship between the logos tou theou and all the things that have “come into being” by means of (dia) the Logos.

    We likely have some other areas where we would disagree, but, again I’m not sure these points contradict what you are trying to say. The main area of disagreement might be what I tend to see (correctly or incorrectly) as the exclusivity of God’s saving/transforming activity for those who perform some “work of the head” (or work of the will) in terms of believing rightly in your articulation. I do not see the need to “think right” (or “will right” ) in order to receive saving/transforming grace as any less a work than “behaving right” in order to receive same.

    In the whole soteriological schema (whether one hews to a juridical model or a healing model), there are only three options:

    (a) God saves everyone (ultimately, whether or not our physical death is a bar to God’s salvific action);

    (b) God is unable to save everyone; or

    (c) God does not intend to save everyone.

    Under (b), God’s ability is limited by either human response or the work of the Satan (or both). Under (c), generally there are simply those who (given God’s omniscience) are predestined to salvation and those who are predestined to condemnation (Calvinist double-predestination)—or else (c) as well depends on human response, whether such response is seen as work of the head, the emotions, the will, or behavior.

    All three views have been justified, since the earliest days (except perhaps for (c) ), by appeal to scripture, and different hermeneutical approaches. I am not questioning your ability to exegete strongly and cogently for your position; but you at least have to recognize the implications of choosing one of those three (and I don’t mean to suggest that you don’t).

    _____________________________________

    Note: With regard to your first sentence, I think that the theology of the early church would affirm that Jesus is the Son, but not that the Son is strictly Jesus; rather, it is a term used to designate the relationship of the Logos to the Father in trinitarian symbology.
  14. Hmmm . . .
    Joined
    19 Jan '04
    Moves
    22131
    26 Dec '07 04:30
    Originally posted by kirksey957
    I will make an attempt to turn my recollection of this true event into a Zen story. The master asked his student if he were Jesus. The student, incredulous, said, "Well , of course not." The master replied, "That's too bad."
    Kirksey,

    I just came across this quote by Jean Cardinal Danielou on the use of philosophical categories by St. Gregory of Nyssa—

    “It is substantially the same kind of thought which could express itself in Buddhist technical categories, but would not for that reason be any less Christian mystical thought than Buddhist mystical thought.”

    Quoted in Paulos Mar Gregorios’ Cosmic Man: The Divine Presence (on the thought of Gregory of Nyssa).
  15. Joined
    02 Aug '06
    Moves
    12622
    26 Dec '07 10:331 edit
    It is clear that you think that sincerely asking for salvation is sufficient for attaining it, since God grants such sincere requests. Do you also think that sincerely asking for salvation is necessary for attaining it? If so, what does "sincerely asking" amount to? Does it require an utterance, a thought, or what?


    The passage I was speaking of simply says "But as many as received Him, to them He gave authority to become children of God, to those who believe into His name."

    There may be many ways a person can communicate to God (not to me) that they want to receive Christ and believe into His name. God has the wisdom to know if they are really receiving Him and if they are really believing into the name of Jesus Christ.

    If the receiver needs help, we can help them to pray and confess the name of the Lord Jesus.

    IF some skeptics simply wants to micro parse the passage to pin point how much receiving is receiving and how much believing is believing, I have no heart to split hairs over a debate like that.

    God knows the hearts of all people.
Back to Top