Originally posted by robbie carrobie
i knew you would raise these points jaywill, it was inevitable my friend, do you really want me to address them one by one,
oh well jaywill, if you must
firstly Stephen saw a vision of Christ in the heavens, seated at the right hand of God, this event did not constitute a prayer, yes he spoke directly with the Christ, but this does not mean it ...[text shortened]... he son of God and King of Gods Kingdom, and the greatest teacher ever to have trodden the earth.
firstly Stephen saw a vision of Christ in the heavens, seated at the right hand of God, this event did not constitute a prayer,
I don't think that it matters that he saw a vision. Where is a law saying "Thou Shalt Not Pray While Seeing a Vision?"
yes he spoke directly with the Christ, but this does not mean it was a prayer,
Speaking directly with the Father or with God is not prayer then ?
I don't think it matters that Stephen was speaking directly with Jesus. In fact I think it is quite good that he did so.
for to do so would also mean that when Adam and Eve spoke with God in a similar and direct fashion, it was a prayerful act, thus your reasoning is entirely erroneous my friend, entirely.
I don't think anything
in early Genesis mandates
that it is wrong to direct our prayers to the Lord Jesus.
To ask in His name, as He instructed, is not as superficial as to simply tack on to the end of your prayer "in the name of Jesus". To ask in His name means to ask in the realm of His Person, in His presence, His name is Himself.
Please do not be too superfical as to think asking in the name of Jesus merely means finishing your prayer with "in the name of Jesus"
. It should mean that in your heart you are one with Jesus, before the face of Jesus, in the realm and sphere of Jesus. And it DOES NOT make praying TO Jesus wrong.
Stephen, in asking Jesus to forgive his murderers was asking in the name of Jesus because he was in fellowhip with Jesus. And his asking Jesus was his asking God.
(John 15:16) - "... whatever you ask the Father in My name, He may give you."
Now if this teaching was merely a promise that tacking onto the end of every prayer "in the name of Jesus"
would cause us to receive our request, then a lot of immature Christians would have all kinds of things. That is mosly material things like cars, a better job, a nicer house, a big raise at their job, etc. etc. etc. They could say "But I asked in the name of Jesus and I didn't get a new Mercedes or a big promotion at work. What is wrong?"
Asking in the name of Jesus is not that superficial. First of all it means that you are asking according to the will of Jesus - the will of God. You are asking in harmony with His Person and His purpose.
I think your view of asking the Father in the name of Jesus the Son should be uplifted.
for example the apostle John also received a vision of the Christ as you are very well aware, revelation 1:17 to 19, but was this a prayer, hardly could it be the case, for it was simply a vision, as in the case of Stephen, thus you must bear in mind my friend that simply speaking to God does not in itself constitute a prayer!
Prayer is first and foremost an excersize of the spirit of man - the deepest part of man's being. We must worship the God in spirit and in reality. That means our asking, praying, talking to Christ, talking to the Father, our singing, our reading, indeed our daily living - should be with the excersize of the deepest part of our being. We are not simply to talk from the throat. We are to open up our whole heart and whole being until the deepest part of us touches the Holy Spirit.
" ... out of his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water"
Stephen and John's speaking to God were from their deepest spiritual kernel . John said that he was "in spirit"
four times in the book of Revelation. He was not in the mind. He was in touch with his deepest part within his being.
Prayer to Jesus is something I would give my life for by His mercy. You would have to kill me to forbid me from praying to Jesus.
therefore it would be incorrect to cite Stephens or Johns talking to Jesus as evidence that we actually should pray to him, no, siree!
This prohibition on praying or speaking to Jesus - was it not precisely WHY the mob was stoning Stephen ? It seems to me Robbie, that in this you are more aligned with Stephen's persecutors that with Stephen. Is this not a shame to you?
"Lord [Jesus] do not hold this sin against them." (Acts 7:60)
They held their ears and grinded their teeth and attacked Stephen with stones. They just couldn't STAND to hear Stephen speak of and TO Jesus in this way.
How are you not different from them in their outrage?
the whole fallacious argument of Christians who pray to Christ fails because of their inability to correctly and accurately distinguish the actual being of the Christ, prehuman, yes, creation, yes, with a beginning, yes, always existed, no, son of God yes, exalted, undoubtedly, King yes! God almighty, no way!
The Word that was with God (John 1:1) WAS GOD (John 1:1).
And "THE WORD BECAME FLESH" (John 1:14)
Flesh IS and item of Creation. True. But the WORD Who was with God and WAS GOD is not an item of creation. For as long as God was the WORD was and WAS GOD.
Besides this I do not think you have made a convincing case that Stephen did not pray to Jesus in spite of the circumstances. And certainly Paul requested something of Jesus in prayer three times WITHOUT and accompanying vision.
You should not make this a legal matter. Praying to the Father is wonderful. Praying to Jesus is also wonderful, effective, enjoyable and sweet. There is nothing wrong with praying
to the Lord Jesus.
I would encourage any human being to do so.
once you come to appreciate this Jaywill, then all other things become crystal clear, no mysticism, no mingling of man and God, but the son of God and King of Gods Kingdom, and the greatest teacher ever to have trodden the earth.
No, Jesus is the mingling of God and man. And the old Arian teaching that the Deity of Jesus is incomplete was rightly rejected by the ancient brothers a long time ago. Athanasius and other ancient Christian brothers were correct to declare that Arius heresy and attack against the Triune God should be pronounced heretical.
Today certain groups like Jehovah's Witnesses and The Way International have recycled this old heresy. You have been caught up in it. From what quarter I do not know.
By the way - the word "MINGLE" is scriptural from the typology of Levititcus and the meal offering. And many good expositors say that the mingling of the fine flour and the oil was symbolic of the mingling of God and man in the real offering of Jesus Christ.
Now explain to me why the blood of Jesus is so effectual to remove the sins of the sinner for eternity. Is it because Jesus was some kind of created angel ?
He had to be a MAN in order to DIE. He had to be GOD in order for His death to have such eternal and effectual significance.