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  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by EndtimesDeut32/70AD View Post
    I disagree. From the time of Jesus and John the Baptist, the new law of the new covenant was being taught. Those of allegience and faith in Christ were beginning the foundations of seperation from the Pharisees and Mosaic law. See again Deut 18. Note again the tone of the author of Hebrews who would say; if the law had brought life; there would have not been a need for the new prophet and new words and his Covenant in his blood.

    It was a progressive transition even after the teaching of Christ and through the 40 yrs of transition; but none the less, the restoration of individual accountablity to one's make and the Teaching of Christ to support it came through John and Christ. Theses principles were contrasted against the conditional / corporal mosaic law from the time Jesus began teaching. Recall how he healed on the sabbath and took grain and so forth. Recall he sermon on the mount and how it would have sounded different than the conditional blessings of keeping all the law of Moses.

    They [the nation of Israel] were powerless at that time, and from the babylonian captivity, to keep every instruction of Moses in order to maintain corporal/national blessing because God had removed the very ark of that covenant upon which they were to sprinkle blood. The covenant of the law had already been broken. What remained were it's latter ends and the fulfillment of the Holy Spirit and the prophecies of the prophets.
    That's all fine and good, but what does it have to do with the moral failings of "God's perfect law" which Paul declared to be "holy, and just, and good"?

    That's the issue. If folks didn't claim the entire Bible to be the "infallible and inerrant Word of God" this would not be an issue. We could look at the corruption that got included (somehow, someway, I don't know) into the Bible. Why is it there? I don't know. But I can't deny that it is there! How do you understand it? Is, or was, the OT the "Word of God?"
    • Skepticism is the antiseptic of the mind.
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  2. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by RAM View Post
    I am presenting whole passages in context that prove there are fundamental moral errors in the Bible. Here are a few of the issues I think are most important:

    I could go on, but it is late. I am not interested in playing any intellectual "hide and seek" games with folks trying to save the Bible from itself. There must be another solution. I don't know what it is, but I do know, with absolutely certainty, that it will not be found in the insipid game of twisting words that has been the staple of the Christian apologetic approach on these issues.

    All the best.
    Agreed: There is another solution.
    I think your missing for one the covenantal context. For example; I dont' think anyone implies that the church of the everlasting covenant of Peace (EZ 38) is to participate in activities of the mosaic covenant. Do you?

    As Rose used to acknowledge, the law was added due to sin and disbelief.

    I know your not judging old testament as inferior to present 'just war theory' for the present past century has likely produced similar actions of 'war' as these though perhaps not 'lawful' actions.
    1Thess 4:8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    If you are oppressed and enslaved by religious law, you may have a tendency to oppress, enslave and attempt to lord over others who are free.

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by EndtimesDeut32/70AD View Post
    Agreed: There is another solution.
    I think your missing for one the covenantal context. For example; I dont' think anyone implies that the church of the everlasting covenant of Peace (EZ 38) is to participate in activities of the mosaic covenant. Do you?
    No I do not "participate" in the OT covenant. That's not the issue. The issue for me is the "status" of the OT. Was it from God? In what sense is it or was it the "Word of God"? If it is the Word of God, why does it contain such moral monstrosities? What do you think?

    If it is the Word of God, why does it contain things so far below basic level of human morality? We can't say it's because God's ways are "higher" than our ways, because "higher" does not mean "lower."
    • 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?

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  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Ram
    That's all fine and good, but what does it have to do with the moral failings of "God's perfect law" which Paul declared to be "holy, and just, and good"?
    I just noticed that you were referencing Rom 7:12.
    In the context, I believe that Paul is saying that the law is holy, just and good in its' designed purposes of showing that attempting to keep conditional laws are not the way of pleasing God. That is accomplished apart from the law as he explains earlier in the book.

    An exegesis of chapter 6-8 would be in order; but just from what I gather in the surrounding text; Paul is saying that his failure in pleasing God through the condition of keeping the law [mosaic or commandment] cause a need to know another way; just as Adam/Eve had found.

    Reading just a few verses earlier gives a contrasting 'verse'.6

    But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not [in] the oldness of the letter. What shall we say then? [Is] the law sin? God forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet.

    This is not God's perfect law of Liberty which is justification through faith and empowerment in HIM and His work.
    Rom 8:2. declares part of it.
    Last edited by EndtimesDeut32/70AD; 03-15-2011 at 07:51 AM.
    1Thess 4:8 He therefore that despiseth, despiseth not man, but God, who hath also given unto us his holy Spirit.
    -----------------------------------------------------------
    If you are oppressed and enslaved by religious law, you may have a tendency to oppress, enslave and attempt to lord over others who are free.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by EndtimesDeut32/70AD View Post
    I just noticed that you were referencing Rom 7:12.
    In the context, I believe that Paul is saying that the law is holy, just and good in its' designed purposes of showing that attempting to keep conditional laws are not the way of pleasing God. That is accomplished apart from the law as he explains earlier in the book.

    An exegesis of chapter 6-8 would be in order; but just from what I gather in the surrounding text; Paul is saying that his failure in pleasing God through the condition of keeping the law [mosaic or commandment] cause a need to know another way; just as Adam/Eve had found.
    No exegesis is necessary. I was only trying to make the point that the OT is supposed to be "good" and "just" and "holy." If you disagree, just say so. That's what I've been trying to clear up. What is you opinion of the OT? Is it the "Word of God" or not? If it's not the "Word of God" then I would guess there is no problem that it presents God as immoral.
    • 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?

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  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by RAM View Post
    According to Wikipedia:
    DeBow's Review "was a was a widely circulated magazine of "agricultural, commercial, and industrial progress and resource" in the American South during the upper middle of the 19th century, from 1846 until 1884. ... Before the Civil War the journal contained everything from agricultural reports, statistical data, and economic analysis to literature, political opinion, and commentary. The magazine took an increasingly pro-Southern and eventually secessionist perspective in the late 1850s and early 1860s. It defended slavery in response to abolitionism, published an article in the 1850s that urged the South to resume the African slave trade, and advocated southern nationalism as the Civil War approached.
    The article mentioned was DeBow’s Review 9 (September 1850) purported to prove that the Bible supports slavery. The article began as follows:

    After presenting many verses to support their argument, the article concluded as follows:

    Note the concluding sentence: "If that book is of divine origin, the holding of slaves is right: as that which God has permitted, recognized and commanded, cannot be inconsistent with his will."

    If the Bible is sufficiently ambiguous to allow for such contrary interpretations, how can anyone claim that it is a reliable source of moral teachings?
    If the Bible is sufficiently ambiguous to allow for such contrary interpretations, how can anyone claim that it is a reliable source of moral teachings?
    Hey Richard,

    I think the Apostle Peter answered that question.

    Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.
    2Peter 3:15-16

    Trying to justify a practice by lifting it from a past cultural and historical setting can lead a person into serious error and is a distortion of scripture.

    I am sure that's how the Mormons used to justify polygamy. Hey, God allowed his people in the OT to practice it so it must be OK to do it now. Just because God allowed something does not mean it was his will. As Jesus pointed out to the Pharisees Moses allowed them to write their wives a certificate of divorce for any and every reason, but that was not God's will from the beginning. He only allowed it because of the hardness of their hearts. I think God allowed many practices in the OT due to this reason.

    Well you might say, the NT for the most part does not condemn slavery either. To understand why it doesn't I think you need to remember the whole thrust of the NT. It was to change men's hearts by the preaching of the Gospel. They knew the only way to truly change society was to change men's hearts. If they went around preaching against all the evil and unfair practices in their society they would have lost their focus and would not have accomplished their main mission of preaching the Gospel. I think the wisdom of this is born out by history. By about 400-500 AD slavery as a practice was almost done away with in the Roman Empire as the influence of Christianity spread through society. Also if they went around encouraging slaves to run away and break the law of their society it would cause civil unrest which would hinder the spread of the Gospel message.

    But in 1Tim 1:8-11 Paul does lump slave traders together with other evil practices.

    We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine

    So if I wanted to justify the practice of polygamy I could point to the Bible and say that men of God in the OT practiced it so it must be OK for me today. That would be a classic example distorting scripture by taking it out of its cultural and historical setting. I think that would fit what Peter said when he wrote that men distort scripture to their own destruction.

    Clifford

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clifford View Post
    Hey Richard,

    I think the Apostle Peter answered that question.

    Bear in mind that our Lord’s patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do the other Scriptures, to their own destruction.
    2Peter 3:15-16

    Trying to justify a practice by lifting it from a past cultural and historical setting can lead a person into serious error and is a distortion of scripture.

    I am sure that's how the Mormons used to justify polygamy. Hey, God allowed his people in the OT to practice it so it must be OK to do it now. Just because God allowed something does not mean it was his will. As Jesus pointed out to the Pharisees Moses allowed them to write their wives a certificate of divorce for any and every reason, but that was not God's will from the beginning. He only allowed it because of the hardness of their hearts. I think God allowed many practices in the OT due to this reason.
    Hi Clifford,

    Of course the Mormons can justify polygamy from the Bible, and they have just as much right to do so as someone who justifies slavery because Yahweh allowed it! The reason polygamy is outlawed in this country is not because of the Bible, because the Bible doesn't condemn it....it's outlawed because people reasoned it was wrong! Jesus only spoke of divorce, not multiple marriages.

    People have been arguing over the meaning of Scripture since it was written, so why would you think that the Hebrews could understand it any better than people do today? If God allows something that isn't his will because of the hardness of peoples hearts, how are mere humans suppose to know the difference between what is God's will and what is not?

    Quote Originally Posted by Clifford View Post
    Well you might say, the NT for the most part does not condemn slavery either. To understand why it doesn't I think you need to remember the whole thrust of the NT. It was to change men's hearts by the preaching of the Gospel. They knew the only way to truly change society was to change men's hearts. If they went around preaching against all the evil and unfair practices in their society they would have lost their focus and would not have accomplished their main mission of preaching the Gospel. I think the wisdom of this is born out by history. By about 400-500 AD slavery as a practice was almost done away with in the Roman Empire as the influence of Christianity spread through society. Also if they went around encouraging slaves to run away and break the law of their society it would cause civil unrest which would hinder the spread of the Gospel message.

    But in 1Tim 1:8-11 Paul does lump slave traders together with other evil practices.

    We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine

    So if I wanted to justify the practice of polygamy I could point to the Bible and say that men of God in the OT practiced it so it must be OK for me today. That would be a classic example distorting scripture by taking it out of its cultural and historical setting. I think that would fit what Peter said when he wrote that men distort scripture to their own destruction.

    Clifford
    If the purpose of the Bible is to change the hearts of men it sure is taking a long time to accomplish its purpose! I can look back in history 2500 years to the time of Confucius and see a man who taught the "Golden Rule", so it is not an idea that is unique to the Bible, and in many cases the Old Testament does not teach equality at all, but quite the opposite especially in the case of women who were considered property, and other races besides the Hebrews who were considered pagans!

    Blessings,
    Rose
    Last edited by Rose; 03-22-2011 at 12:30 PM.
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  8. #18
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    Hi Rich n' Rose

    Scripture says that slaves should be released in the 7th year (sabbath year), so slavery was hardly worse than a seven year apprenticeship. If I was captured in battle and, instead of being killed, was offered a nice 7 year period of slavery (servitude) with a well-to-do Jewish family to be followed by complete freedom, then I would not be at all sad.

    Modern slavery, however, was for life - which is unacceptable.

    Craig

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Craig.Paardekooper View Post
    Hi Rich n' Rose

    Scripture says that slaves should be released in the 7th year (sabbath year), so slavery was hardly worse than a seven year apprenticeship. If I was captured in battle and, instead of being killed, was offered a nice 7 year period of slavery (servitude) with a well-to-do Jewish family to be followed by complete freedom, then I would not be at all sad.

    Modern slavery, however, was for life - which is unacceptable.

    Craig
    Hey there Craig,

    I think you missed a very important point. The command to set slaves free after six years service applies only to male Hebrew slaves:
    Exodus 21:2 "If you buy a Hebrew slave, he shall serve for six years; but on the seventh he shall go out as a free man without payment. 3 "If he comes alone, he shall go out alone; if he is the husband of a wife, then his wife shall go out with him. 4 "If his master gives him a wife, and she bears him sons or daughters, the wife and her children shall belong to her master, and he shall go out alone. 5 "But if the slave plainly says, 'I love my master, my wife and my children; I will not go out as a free man,' 6 then his master shall bring him to God, then he shall bring him to the door or the doorpost. And his master shall pierce his ear with an awl; and he shall serve him permanently. 7 "And if a man sells his daughter as a female slave, she is not to go free as the male slaves do. 8 "If she is displeasing in the eyes of her master who designated her for himself, then he shall let her be redeemed. He does not have authority to sell her to a foreign people because of his unfairness to her.
    Lovely. If the owner of a male slave gives him a wife, and they produce children, the wife and children belong to the Master! And female Hebrew slaves don't go free after seven years. And if the owner of a female slave has sex with her and doesn't like her, he can sell her, but not to foreigners. Are you really going to argue that these are good laws given by a holy God? I can't imagine that you would think these laws are defensible. They are a moral abomination!

    But all that only applies to Hebrew slaves. Remember the Law of God concerning slaves in general:
    Exodus 21:20 "And if a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod and he dies at his hand, he shall be punished. 21 "If, however, he survives a day or two, no vengeance shall be taken; for he is his property.
    It doesn't get any more clear that that. The slavery commanded by Moses in the Bible dehumanizes the slave. We see the same thing with the female slave who is sold if she does not sexually please her rapist/owner. All these laws relating to slavery are moral abominations.

    I think we need to rethink the Bible. If it is from God, it must be a TEST of our MORALITY to see if we have human hearts that reject evil, or if we are religious robots that believe whatever we are told to believe without !

    Richard
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  10. #20
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    Exodus 21:20 "And if a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod and he dies at his hand, he shall be punished. 21 "If, however, he survives a day or two, no vengeance shall be taken; for he is his property.
    This passage is not quoted properly. It should read "If he gets up after a day or two" not "if he survives a day or two"

    The meaning seems to be that corporal punishment of slaves is allowed as long as the slave is not killed or injured.


    You said that female slaves are not released after 6 years. Well ........

    "At the end of every seven years you must cancel debts. This is how it is to be
    done: Every creditor shall cancel the loan he made to his fellow Israelite. He
    shall not require payment from his fellow Israelite or brother, because the
    LORD's time for cancelling debts has been proclaimed.
    Deuteronomy 15 v 1 - 12

    If a fellow Hebrew, a man or woman, sells himself to you and serves you six years, in the seventh year you
    must let him go free. And when you release him, do not send him away empty handed. Supply him liberally from your flock, your threshing floor and your winepress. GIve to him as the Lord your God has blessed you."
    DEUTERONOMY 15 v 12

    "If you buy a Hebrew servant he is to serve you for 6 years but in the seventh year
    he shall go free, without paying anything."
    EXODUS 21 v 2

    As if the Sabbath Year law wasn't clear enough, God also instituted a Year of Jubilee.
    Every seven sabbaths of years - or seven times seven years, a special year of
    ATONEMENT was to be proclaimed throughout the Land. It was a special year of
    LIBERTY when each person was to return home to his family and property.


    "Count off seven Sabbaths of years - seven times seven years - so that the seven
    Sabbaths of years amount to a period of 49 years. Then have the trumpet sounded
    everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound
    the trumpet throughout your land. Consecrate the 50th year and proclaim liberty
    throughout the land to all it's inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each one of
    you is to return to his family property and each to his own clan."
    LEVITICUS 25 v 8
    God's laws indicate that after a period of "seven", debts are to be forgiven and slaves are
    to be freed and allowed to return home. How appropriate, therefore, that after 70 years of
    captivity and enslavement to the Babylonians, the Jews were set free and allowed to
    return to their homeland

    The only time that this sabbatical law does not apply to female slaves, is if the man buys a female slave for marriage. If a man buys a female slave for marriage, then she has the rights of a wife. If he buys her for his son, then she has the rights a daughter. Even if he marries another woman, the female "servant" still has full food, clothing and marital rights - or freedom.

    If he doesn't take her as a wife, then the sabbatical law still applies.

    This policy of cancelling all debts after 7 years is so fundamental that it goes back to creation, when God rested from his labours on the 7th day. It is even intrinsic to Jewish history -

    • - the Babylonian captivity was deliberately set to 70 years, so after 70 years the Jews could return to their homeland. (Jeremiah)
    • - after 70 x 7 the Messiah would come to bring forgiveness for everyone. (Daniel)
    • - after 770 years the northern kingdom judged, but the southern kingdom finds grace (Isaiah)


    The sabbatical laws are all about mercy.

    This case study of slaves is interesting. After all, you can judge the ethics of a society by it's treatment of it's most unfortunate members.

    The Sabbatical laws only applied to Hebrews. People of other nations could be held as slaves permanently. These were prisoners of war - the inhabitants of captured cities.
    Last edited by Craig.Paardekooper; 03-26-2011 at 09:09 AM.

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