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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Yakima, Wa
    Posts
    15,146

    Margaret Barker and "Temple Theology"

    I read this post in another thread before the member, who will remain anonymous, deleted it:

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymous member
    I was on a blog yesterday which linked to this site www.margaretbarker.com/index.htm . I was interested to look about the site because she has some writings on angels. I also saw in her publications she has written a book called 'Temple Theology' and wondered if could contain anything informative on the menorah. She is mainly concerned with the first Temple ...the one Solomon built.

    I havent read any of her work yet so dont know much about it
    I did a little research and was about to answer when the poster sent me a private message that the original post should be deleted because it linked to an obviously heretical site. I agreed, and decided that this was a good time to open this new sub-forum called "Deviations, Heresies, and Cults." Obviously we will need it because we encounter such things nearly every day in our walk with Christ, and we need to help others avoid errors.

    One thing is need here. Please endeavor to speak the truth in love. Nothing is gained by mocking or insulting people who have become lost in error. Our job is to show the way of Jesus Christ who is the LIGHT, not to cast sinners into "outer darkness" as if we were the Almighty Judge!

    With that, let us look at the case of Margaret Barker. I know nothing of her personally. Indeed, I had never even seen her name until I read the post this morning. The title "Temple Theology" immediately intrigued me, because it made me think of "Incarnation Theology" which centers on Christ as the Word that "tabernacled" amongst us. God became Man. But the brief description given on her site goes in an entirely different direction::

    Temple theology traces the roots of Christian theology back into the first Temple, destroyed by the cultural revolution in the time of King Josiah at the end of the seventh century BCE. Refugees from the purges settled in Egypt and Arabia.
    "Christian" theology from the seventh century BC? That's a radical thesis! So I checked a little more and found out she's pretty radical in a number of ways. On her "Elements of Temple Theology" page, she claims, amongst other things, that the "Jesus" was recognized as a "Second God" and the "Virgin Mother" was known by the heathen title "Queen of Heaven" ... all in the seventh century BC! Here's a quote from that page:

    Temple theology is based on the ideas that ...
    • The Lord, the God of Israel, was the Son of God Most High, the Second God.
    • Jesus was recognized as the Lord in this sense.
    • The Queen of Heaven, also known as Wisdom, had been part of the original Temple cult as Virgin Mother of the Messiah.
    • Humans could become angels. This was known as resurrection or theosis.
    Its no wonder that her site claims that Mormon scholars "take a great interest in Margaret Barker's work."

    And what are the ultimate implications of her study? Whatever they are, they most definitely are very hostile to the Bible as we know it. Here is how she put it on her "Implications of Temple Theology" page:

    Temple theology suggests:
    • That the current Old Testament is neither the text nor the ‘canon’ that was known and used by the first Christians.
    • That the non-canonical writings were preserved by Christians and excluded by Jews because they marked important differences between them.
    • That Sola Scriptura has hindered rather than helped the understanding of Christianity.
    • That Christianity was heir to the Temple tradition and so was by no means a ‘new’ religion in the first century.
    So according to Margaret Barker, Christianity proper did not originate in the first century with the proclamation of Jesus Christ and Him crucified. It was already around in the form of "Temple Theology" for hundreds of years, with humans becoming angels, Jesus worshiped as the "Second God" and his ever-virgin mom on her throne as the Queen of Heaven! The events surrounding the birth, death, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ "by no means" created "a 'new' religion in the first century." Its rare to find such a dense set of heresies in one package.

    Margaret Barker's teaching is pure heresy.

    RAM

  2. #2
    I haven't heard of her or her teaching, either. Prolly have a look into it at some point. But the mention of the temple reminded me of a site I found about a year ago (http://home.earthlink.net/~tonybadillo/) describing how Solomon's floor plan is shaped like a human being, which leads into a number of analogies. Cool stuff.
    The desert is a surgeon, cutting away the skin to expose what is underneath.

    Fremen proverb

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    England/Austria
    Posts
    43

    Gnostic ideas

    Hi all!

    To me those ideas seem to be derived from Gnostic writings. Most of those concepts were actually taught in the 2nd and 3rd century church in some areas.

    Here is a link to a very insightful article about gnostic christianity by Bette Stockbauer:

    http://www.essene.com/Gospels/GnosticAndSophia.html

    Agape,

    Michael
    "Let both sides explore what believes unite us instead of belabouring those believes which divide us." J.F.K 1961

    "The undeserved kindness of the Lord Jesus Christ be with the holy ones. Amen" Rev. 22:21

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