Originally posted by jaywill
I could go on and on and on. It was tremendously incorrect for Nemesio to proclaim that a relationship with Jesus is "utterly foreign to the Bible".
I think Nemesio must be utterly foriegn to the Bible. Let's see if he will acknowledge his mistake or try to vindicate it.
Okay, Jaywill. First let's agree that nowhere in the Bible does St Paul, St John, St James, St
Peter, St Jude or Jesus say that the key to a well-formed faith is in relationship with Jesus.
The word 'relationship,' one so key to your theological perspective, is completely absent in
the Christian Scriptures.
Now, let's go through your quotations. They fall into two categories.
"... the Son of God Who loved me and gave Himself up for me." (Gal. 2:20)
Yes. St Paul viewed Jesus' actions as sacrifice, that Jesus was the Paschal Lamb for the sins
of the world. Of this, there can be no debate or question. While this doesn't exclude a post-
Resurrection relationship, it certainly doesn't necessarily entail one. We're looking for positive
proof that Jesus wants His believers to 'have a relationship with Him.'
"the last Adam [Christ] became a life giving Spirit" (1 Cor. 15:45)
Again, the notion of sacrifice, even one that liberates all Creation from the stain of sin doesn't
entail relationship. We want necessity.
"No longer do I call you slaves, for the slave does not know what his master is doing, but I have called you friends, for all that things which I have heard from My Father I have made known to you." (John 15:15)
Now, naturally, Jesus had a relationship with His Disciples. I'm not disputing that Sts John,
Matthew, James, James, Peter, Philip, &c &c &c didn't know
Jesus or didn't have a relationship
with Him. But this is the pre-Resurrection Jesus. His followers needed to have a relationship
with Him. I was talking about the followers of Jesus after
the NT period. This passage
is a conversation between Jesus and the Disciples, not an instruction for Jesus' future followers.
What are some of those instructions? To keep God's commandments, to attend to those in
need, to avoid hypocrisy of theological thought, to be pure of mind and heart, &c &c. Lots of
instructions, but no mention of having a relationship.
"Jesus said to her, Do not touch Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father; but go to My brothers and say to them, I ascend to My Father and your Father, and My God and your God." (John 20:17)
I find it amusing that you can believe that the author of this passage equated Jesus with God,
when He Himself says that He will ascend to His God, but not to digress....
Like above, it's clear that Jesus established a relationship with His Disciples. Only a fool would
argue otherwise. However, such closeness with His contemporaries doesn't entail that a future
believer (a post-Resurrection/post-Ascension one) need to be His brothers. Indeed, St Paul
never says 'Brothers and sisters of Christ,' but 'Brothers and sisters in
This leads us to the second category of quotations.
"He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit" (1 Cor. 6:17)
" ... Christ in you the hope of glory" (Col. 1:27)
" ... do you not know that Jesus Christ is in you, unless you are disapproved?" (2 Cor. 13:5)
"Jesus answered and said to him, If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word, and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make an abode with him." (John 14:23)
"The Lord be with your spirit. Grace be with you" (2 Tim. 4:22)
Clearly, St Paul thought that the Christ was going to have a continuing presence in the lives
of believers. But what does that entail? Your response is naturally, 'a relationship, of course!'
But that word and the concepts which typically define 'relationship' as between individuals is
conspicuously absent. So, did St Paul mean something else?
St Paul always speaks of Christ being with
a person, and when he is
being more explicit, he always says 'with your spirit
This ties in with the notion of being 'born from above.' For St Paul, a person 'within whom the
spirit of Christ dwells' is a believer. A person who has Christ in his heart, will also have Him
on His lips and in His understanding. Christ, for St Paul, then is not a person with whom to
have a relationship, but a means by which one is transformed to the higher, Godly calling.
For St Paul, believers now have a mediator between God and humankind, and the believer can
imbibe that mediator, and consequently be opened to truths hitherto unavailable to humankind.
Through that indwelling (not relationship), the fruits of the spirit can blossom, first in the hearts
of believers, and then in the lives of believers, sowing the metaphorical seeds of faith within
the fields of the world.
My summary is concordant with St Paul's teaching (though it only summarizes a small portion
of it) and doesn't involve the 'R-word' that was sooooo important, that St Paul fails to mention
it even once.
Now, having offered my rebuttal to your claim, I'm going to ask you this: Rather than spout
out a few more irrelevant or misinterpreted Biblical citations, try addressing my specific claims
directly. Keep in mind that you didn't actually respond to my initial post (to see 'a few of the
main thesis statements of Broadbent's proof'
, but that's okay. You offered what you took to
be evidence of the basic claim. Rather than ignoring what I wrote and just ranting and raving,
address specifically what I wrote. Otherwise, it's just cat and mouse where you make these
sweeping claims based on the tiniest excisions of Scripture (not even full verses!) and I have
to keep putting these verses in context that demonstrates how your claims are false.
Give it a try. Engage in a discussion
rather than the 'on and on and on' soliloquies. I
think a good place to start (rather than Scripture) is with your definition of what a relationship
is, and then how a relationship with Jesus ought to look like, and then support it with Scripture.
But that's just my suggestion (you know, that you offer concrete definitions of the terms being
bandied about, and how those definitions are realized on a practical level). Take it or leave it.