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  1. #101
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    Quote Originally Posted by joel View Post
    John, the precise explanation of our "sin" problem is presented in Paul's letter to the Romans chapters 1 - 8.

    A summary is;

    1.) The gospel is God's answer to our "problem". The gospel concerns Christ, Who He is, and what He's accomplished.
    2.) Those things which have been done by us, "sins", are subject to God's wrath.
    3.) When, by faith, we see Christ's sacrifice, the "blood" covers our sins; we are justified. God's righteousness is shared with us as a gift.
    --------------------------------------------------
    4.) Abraham is presented as a model believer. His faith came in two phases (which mirrors the phases of faith for the believer). a. he was "justified"...his sins were covered over. b. His view of himself was changed as he was enabled to see himself as dead after a long period of his own attempts to bring about the promise of God, the promised son.

    This is the area, I believe, where Christians find the greatest challenge. The flesh is where we have lived for so long. We rely on it to carry us through life's experierences. Living in the flesh has been our source of accomplishment. If we fail to see it's impotence as concerning the fulfillment of God's will in our lives, we will wander through this life as an unfruitful tree casting forth its fruit out of season.....or not bearing fruit suitable to God's glory.

    When the time is right, God convicts us concerning our unfruitfulness. We cannot continue to bring forth "Ishmael", the son of the bond woman. God is seeking Isaac, the son of promise. Isaac is the son which is connected with spirit, not flesh.
    ------------------------------------------
    5.) Our unfruitfulness is exposed as we are made subject to manifold trials. We have been justified by Christ's blood, our sins are covered over. But what about the power of sin in our bodies which cause us to continually "miss", and fall short of God's glory?
    God compares the two men; Adam and Christ in chapter 5. Adam, through his disobedience, opened the door to both sin and death into the kosmos. Rule and authority changed. Sin and death reign in and over the old humanity. Christ's victory changes it all back. But, do we believe it?

    6.) In chapter 6, the rule of sin ends by the death of Christ....we are included in His death. The body is a body of sin. It needs a new master.

    7.) In chapter 7, we are exempted from the law as to the flesh serving God. We discover, through Paul's instruction, that there is a law working in our flesh, the law of sin. We agree with God's law in our inner man, but find a contrary law working in the members of us. This reveals a wretched condition from which we must be delivered. The body is a body of death.

    8.) In chapter 8, the wondrous victory of Christ, is magnified in us. We are not condemned for what we have done, and, the righteous requirements of the law can be fulfilled "in us" by a new law that works within the spirit......the law of life, Jesus' life in us. We can be led by God's Spirit, and can move into the liberty of God's children......sharing in Christ Jesus' life....and experiencing the depths of His love....from which we cannot be separated. Chapter 8 describes the "life" which all believers are to experience.

    What stands in the way?......sin,....and death....which both dominate and rule over the flesh of us.....the bodies which we derived from Adam. We are to study, and wrestle with the truths of Paul's Roman's letter....the essence of the gospel. It contains the power of God to save us.

    Joel
    Joel.. What a beautiful and elegant summery of the first half of Romans. Thank-you Joel.

    John

  2. #102
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAM View Post
    I think we have found more phlogiston. The traditional Christian dogma teaches that a "sin" is like a substance that causes God to produce another substance called "wrath" which continues to exist until it is "poured out" on the corresponding "sin substance." It's like the the creation and annihilation of particles and antiparticles in Quantum Field Theory. The sin/wrath pair are jointly created, and the only way to destroy one or the other is in the mutual destruction that happens when they meet.

    What happens to the "wrath of God" when a sinner repents? Does God still need to "pour out his wrath" somewhere?

    Richard
    In an effort to keep it simple... I was under the impression that the penalty for my sin (past, present and future) was dealt with at the Cross of Christ, and that there is no other sacrifice or future wrath for those in Christ since Christ cannot be crucified again for them. I have heard some say that Christ paid the price for only those who were destined to come to Him and that His Blood was not shed for everyone. This would imply that there is a future wrath to be poured out on those who are disobedient to the call of the Gospel (those who reject Christ).

    I'm trying to follow your thought Richard.

    John

  3. #103
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    Quote Originally Posted by jce View Post
    In an effort to keep it simple... I was under the impression that the penalty for my sin (past, present and future) was dealt with at the Cross of Christ, and that there is no other sacrifice or future wrath for those in Christ since Christ cannot be crucified again for them. I have heard some say that Christ paid the price for only those who were destined to come to Him and that His Blood was not shed for everyone. This would imply that there is a future wrath to be poured out on those who are disobedient to the call of the Gospel (those who reject Christ).

    I'm trying to follow your thought Richard.

    John
    Hi John,

    I know it can seem complicated, but my intent was to simplify the discussion by exposing concepts and metaphysical constructs that are not actually taught in Scripture. For example, the idea that Jesus "paid for our sins" is not taught anywhere in the Bible as far as I know, yet it is taught as doctrine by countless evangelicals as if it were the Gospel truth. Since you used this idea in your post, I would be very interested if you could show me two or three clear and unambiguous Scriptures that teach Jesus "paid for our sins." Basically, I'm asking "Where did you get this idea?" (Hint - it is the Penal Substitution theory developed by the Reformers, see below).

    Furthermore, the idea that "sins" are like "things" that have an independent and continued existence and that "wrath" must be "poured out" on each and every one of those "sins" is taught nowhere in Scripture. The Bible teaches that God's wrath is "upon" sinners, not the reified "sins" (as if they had some independent ongoing "concrete" existence).

    Furthermore, the Bible does not state that God "poured out his wrath" upon Jesus. So where did that idea come from?

    As you can see, Christians have been saying words without having any idea whatsoever as to what many of those words (and metaphysical constructs) actually mean.

    We now are entering in to the "Theories" of the Atonement. This is different than the "Doctrine" of the Atonement which states that we are reconciled to God through the death and resurrection of Christ. We all agree about that - but the question of HOW the death and resurrection of Christ saves us is answered by different THEORIES, and there have been numerous theories of the atonement developed over the last two thousand years. Here is a short list of the prominent theories:

    Roman Catholic Church: Satisfaction Theory
    Eastern Orthodox Churches: Ransom Theory
    Conservative & some Mainline Protestants: Penal Substitution Theory
    Protestant Word-faith Movement: Ransom Theory
    Liberal Christians & post Christians: Moral Theory or a non-violent theory

    I am sorry to introduce so many ideas in one post, but this topic has 2000 years of history so there's really no way to avoid it. I have been studying the theories of atonement for a while because my brother-in-law Robin Collins (Professor of the Philosophy of Science and Religion at Messiah College) has been working on a new theory for some years now, and we talk a lot.

    All the very best,

    Richard

    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

  4. #104
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    Smile

    GUILT :

    "JESUS CHRIST PROMISED ANOTHER COMFORTOR"

    ADVOCATE,COUNSELLOR,COMFORTOR.

    The first two are legal terms,so will address those.
    Rom.5:17,18

    We are under a covenant of Grace not Law.
    A free gift of rightiousness was given.
    The words just,justified,justification,righteous,or righteousness are translated from one basic Greek word.A legal term which means "acquittal". It means cleared of all guilt.
    In Rom 5:17 the word receive is the Greek word "lambano" in the active sense,it means accept,or take hold of ,requiring an action on our part.
    The Father,Holy Spirit of Life is the same way.One has to accept him,in the same sense of action,as reaching out and grabing him. We are to have the same Faith in the Father as Jesus did while he was still in a flesh body.
    Jesus is our advocate,in that we accept " HIS " righteousness as our own through faith.Any other form of righteousness on our part is self righteousness.
    You notice that Jesus the Christ in the flow of the Holy Spirit is in between the Father and us.Making him our intercessor,and our covering, and in his Image are we being transformed into. His soul-spirit ( pneuma -psuche).
    When the Father looks at us he see's Jesus first and not us.Through his righteousness only are we found to be not guilty.To believe that we can accomplish righteousness on our own merits,thru any works of our own is simply not so ,or scriptural.

    We are all still in the flesh,but we do the best that
    we can. Our old conscience is seared and takes on the conscience
    of Jesus Christ. That is we try and follow the two commandments that he was given by the Father.

    For man in the flesh to remain in the Law is to be back again yoked to the Law.
    It was an impossible task for the children of Israel, with the added mental picture that Jesus tried to show them. That being ,that all unrighteousness begins within the Mind as a thought. The thought itself preceeds the action or deed.
    According the Jesus, that to even think a deed ,shows that sin remaineth.

    The fact that we within the BOC are found to be not guilty of sin is not
    a licence to sin.
    To me anyway, a violation of the love commandments is what biblical sin
    is all about.

    We are fortunate that we are found to be not guilty, as to love our enemies
    is hardly possible.
    Man has two faces, and as a rule of thumb I try to keep in mind how Man
    is relatively in the same boat. I try to offer him a hand of friendship. If
    he strikes me on the right cheek, I show him my left. Left hook that is.

    If you have Faith in the Father as did Jesus, I would'nt let the problem
    that sin seems to haunt some people get to me.
    Do the best you can and leave the rest to the Spirit of Life.
    Your free of the Law, save conscience. Let conscience be your guide.
    It is your friend ,not enemy.

    Gil

  5. #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gil View Post
    If you have Faith in the Father as did Jesus, I would'nt let the problem
    that sin seems to haunt some people get to me.
    Do the best you can and leave the rest to the Spirit of Life.
    Your free of the Law, save conscience. Let conscience be your guide.
    It is your friend ,not enemy.

    Gil
    Tremendous answer Gil! It's hard to believe the amazing synchronicity here. I was writing an article about the same thing for my blog when I saw your answer:

    How to hear the Voice of God: Your Conscience
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

  6. #106
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    We have two inner inclinations as believers.......the law of sin works in our members to bring forth "death". Death is the rations of sin, the master of our flesh. It is not "wages"....as if pay for work....but "rations" which are meted out to the soldier.

    The second inner inclination, as a believer, is the Spirit of God within, working with our conscience, and as we, with our minds, agree with the law of God, a harvest of godly fruit is developed within and is to be expressed in love and kindness to others.......we are bearing fruit of the Spirit.

    When we were unbelievers, all that we did was "work of the flesh". And, as Cain is our example, if we bring the works of our flesh our offering to God will not be accepted.

    In His loving mercy, however, He provides a sin offering for us which lies at the door.......like the ram caught in the thicket.....God provides the Lamb of God whose blood covers over our "misses".

    Now, it is a matter of sin in us, attempting to be our master again. But, we have a new Lord. His very life is in us and will be expressed through us to others as we seek the good for them.

    The Cross of Christ is where our "old humanity" was impaled, in Him.

    The tomb is where our "old humanity" was placed into death, His death.

    And, by the glorious working of God, we were "born again", together,......all of us.......just as we were made sinners in Adam in the garden, we are born anew in Christ in the belly of the earth.

    Now risen with Him, we are to walk in newness of life, and serve in newness of spirit, and not in oldness of letter.

    Righteousness being placed within us, is expressed as fruit, and good works within which we are to walk.

    Efforts of the flesh are as filthy rags......the earth was cursed, and no offering which comes from it is acceptable to God.

    His wrath will be demonstrated on those works.....His wrath is impending. At present, He is drawing all to the Cross, the blood and body of Christ to receive the redemption that is in Him.....and to receive the liberty that is in Him.....and to be saved by His life having been saved from the wrath of God which is awaiting the sons of disobedience (unpersuadeableness).

    Joel
    For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38,39

  7. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gil View Post
    GUILT :

    "JESUS CHRIST PROMISED ANOTHER COMFORTOR"

    ADVOCATE,COUNSELLOR,COMFORTOR.

    The first two are legal terms,so will address those.
    Rom.5:17,18

    We are under a covenant of Grace not Law.
    A free gift of rightiousness was given.
    The words just,justified,justification,righteous,or righteousness are translated from one basic Greek word.A legal term which means "acquittal". It means cleared of all guilt.
    In Rom 5:17 the word receive is the Greek word "lambano" in the active sense,it means accept,or take hold of ,requiring an action on our part.
    The Father,Holy Spirit of Life is the same way.One has to accept him,in the same sense of action,as reaching out and grabing him. We are to have the same Faith in the Father as Jesus did while he was still in a flesh body.
    Jesus is our advocate,in that we accept " HIS " righteousness as our own through faith.Any other form of righteousness on our part is self righteousness.
    You notice that Jesus the Christ in the flow of the Holy Spirit is in between the Father and us.Making him our intercessor,and our covering, and in his Image are we being transformed into. His soul-spirit ( pneuma -psuche).
    When the Father looks at us he see's Jesus first and not us.Through his righteousness only are we found to be not guilty.To believe that we can accomplish righteousness on our own merits,thru any works of our own is simply not so ,or scriptural.

    We are all still in the flesh,but we do the best that
    we can. Our old conscience is seared and takes on the conscience
    of Jesus Christ. That is we try and follow the two commandments that he was given by the Father.

    For man in the flesh to remain in the Law is to be back again yoked to the Law.
    It was an impossible task for the children of Israel, with the added mental picture that Jesus tried to show them. That being ,that all unrighteousness begins within the Mind as a thought. The thought itself preceeds the action or deed.
    According the Jesus, that to even think a deed ,shows that sin remaineth.

    The fact that we within the BOC are found to be not guilty of sin is not
    a licence to sin.
    To me anyway, a violation of the love commandments is what biblical sin
    is all about.

    We are fortunate that we are found to be not guilty, as to love our enemies
    is hardly possible.
    Man has two faces, and as a rule of thumb I try to keep in mind how Man
    is relatively in the same boat. I try to offer him a hand of friendship. If
    he strikes me on the right cheek, I show him my left. Left hook that is.

    If you have Faith in the Father as did Jesus, I would'nt let the problem
    that sin seems to haunt some people get to me.
    Do the best you can and leave the rest to the Spirit of Life.
    Your free of the Law, save conscience. Let conscience be your guide.
    It is your friend ,not enemy.

    Gil
    As I read through this post, it was like a breath of fresh air... no, better yet, a breath of FREE air!!! What a wonderful exposition! That word "Acquittal" conveys to the guilty, such a spirit of relief & contrition!!!

    Thank-you Gil. Blessings to you!

    John

    PS: I was not planning to post the entire quote in the interest of saving space, but its meaningfulness bears repeating.

  8. #108
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    [QUOTE]
    Quote Originally Posted by RAM View Post
    Hi John,

    I know it can seem complicated, but my intent was to simplify the discussion by exposing concepts and metaphysical constructs that are not actually taught in Scripture. For example, the idea that Jesus "paid for our sins" is not taught anywhere in the Bible as far as I know, yet it is taught as doctrine by countless evangelicals as if it were the Gospel truth. Since you used this idea in your post, I would be very interested if you could show me two or three clear and unambiguous Scriptures that teach Jesus "paid for our sins." Basically, I'm asking "Where did you get this idea?" (Hint - it is the Penal Substitution theory developed by the Reformers, see below).
    I am beginning to see that much of my "Christian Lingo" is really without biblical basis and this forum, with it's learned contributors has been a great eye opener. It has certainly prodded me to examine my own "Biblical Terminology".

    Regarding the idea that Jesus paid the penalty for our sins, comes from my interpretation of the concept of "redemption" or "to redeem". Jesus, as my Redeemer, was my substitute. He stood in my place and became the sacrifice for my transgressions, as John said "Behold the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world". Of course, I'm actually a little intimidated making any statements that once flowed so casually from my tongue and keyboard.

    Furthermore, the Bible does not state that God "poured out his wrath" upon Jesus. So where did that idea come from?
    Much to my dismay, I could not locate any biblical support for that one and I actually removed that phrase from another post of mine.

    As you can see, Christians have been saying words without having any idea whatsoever as to what many of those words (and metaphysical constructs) actually mean.
    Yes, where I once again was blind... now I once again see (more clearly) but still need better focus.

    Thanks Richard for your gentle, corrective spirit.

    John

    PS: I am far from convinced that Jesus returned in AD70, but I trust God will change my mind on that also... if it's true.

  9. #109
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    Richard, are you saying that the substitutionary visions of the Son of Man, as in Psalm 88 where God pours out His wrath on the One Who is speaking, does not refer to Christ?

    Joel
    For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38,39

  10. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by jce View Post
    I am beginning to see that much of my "Christian Lingo" is really without biblical basis and this forum, with it's learned contributors has been a great eye opener. It has certainly prodded me to examine my own "Biblical Terminology".

    Regarding the idea that Jesus paid the penalty for our sins, comes from my interpretation of the concept of "redemption" or "to redeem". Jesus, as my Redeemer, was my substitute. He stood in my place and became the sacrifice for my transgressions, as John said "Behold the Lamb of God who taketh away the sins of the world". Of course, I'm actually a little intimidated making any statements that once flowed so casually from my tongue and keyboard.
    Hi John,

    It is wonderful that you understand the work we must do to really comprehend what the Bible is all about. There is indeed a lot of "Christian Lingo" that must "unpacked" and/or rejected before we can speak with clarity about what the Bible really teaches.

    I hope you realize that there is nothing at all to be intimidated about because the glory of being a Truth Seeker is that our motto is "We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold." So speak freely, and if someone points out that something you or I said was not well-founded on Scripture we can rejoice together that our our vision is being clarified. I trust that you will find this forum is different than almost all others on the internet. We rejoice when our errors and shortcomings are exposed because it gives us an opportunity to repent and it helps us come closer to the truth. I always think of my opponents and those who expose my errors as gardeners who weed out error from my Garden of Truth for free.

    Now as for the idea of "redemption" - you appear to be using a mixed metaphor here. On the one hand, you use the metaphor of Jesus "paying" for your sin. That is a monetary metaphor. It presents the image of a monetary transaction, like Jesus took out his wallet and paid some money. But then you switch to the "substitute" metaphor in which you think of Jesus as having taken your place and suffering the punishment that you deserved because you have sinned. Now there is some basis in Scripture for both of these metaphors, but there are others as well. One of the earliest and most popular understandings of the Atonement was the "Ransom Theory" drawn from this passage:
    Mark 10:45 For even the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.
    The idea was that Christ offered himself to Satan in exchange for all the people that he held captive through the power of sin. This is like a "prisoner exchange." But the devil forgot that Christ was innocent and could not be held by the power of death. Sort of a "bait and switch" idea. Anselm in the 11th century criticized this view on a number of points. For example, he said that Satan was an outlaw and so had no "right" or "authority" to hold anyone ransom. So Anselm used his medieval understanding of honor and shame (based on a social system that classifies people according to "honor" not unlike the Hindu caste system) and came up with the idea that sin dishonors God and this requires somebody to satisfy God's wrath so his honor could be restored. This system is called the Satisfaction Theory of the Atonement. It is still popular today and it is interesting that John Piper carelessly mixes it with the Penal Substitution Theory in his book 50 Reasons Jesus had to Die.

    And then comes along John Calvin. He was a lawyer by trade and so it is little wonder that he latched upon the forensic, legal metaphors that Paul used as the basis of his Penal Substitution Theory of the Atonement which now is accepted by many as "the plain teaching of Holy Scripture" (which is a bit odd since it took 1600 years to be discovered/invented).

    Well as you can see, our Hermeneutical House is stuffed to the rafters with the ideas and theories of the folks who came before us. We have a lot of "house cleaning" to do before we can get a clear understanding of what the Bible really teaches on these matters.

    Quote Originally Posted by jce View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by RAM
    Furthermore, the Bible does not state that God "poured out his wrath" upon Jesus. So where did that idea come from?
    Much to my dismay, I could not locate any biblical support for that one and I actually removed that phrase from another post of mine.
    Dismay??? Bah! Rejoice I say! You have learned more truth about Scripture.

    Quote Originally Posted by jce View Post
    Yes, where I once again was blind... now I once again see (more clearly) but still need better focus.

    Thanks Richard for your gentle, corrective spirit.

    John
    It is a joy to work with you on this. And please, never forget that I am just as prone as you or anybody of stating falsehoods. I will rejoice when you find the opportunity to correct me.

    Quote Originally Posted by jce View Post
    PS: I am far from convinced that Jesus returned in AD70, but I trust God will change my mind on that also... if it's true.
    One thing will help clarify. The Olivet Discourse says nothing about Jesus "returning." The disciples did not even understand that he was "going." The prophecies of the coming of Christ in judgment are just that. The idea of a "Second Coming" is nowhere taught as such in Scripture.

    As you can see, the required "housecleaning" touches ever aspect of traditional Christian teaching. There is an OCEAN of absurdities passed off as "what the Bible teaches" and most people's minds are sunk at the bottom of it.

    All the very best my friend. It is a joy to be working with you this wonderful study.

    Richard
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
    • Remember why we debate. We have nothing to lose but the errors we hold. Who but a stubborn fool would hold to errors once they have been exposed?

    Check out my blog site

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