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Thread: Why The Sermon on the Mount?

  1. #11
    tWebber Starlight's Avatar
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    When I saw JPH was the final poster in this thread, I predicted two things... a post choc full of insults and a post providing no useful substance. Unsurprisingly I was right on both. Some people just don't change. I found this behaviour of his pretty embarrassing back when I was a Christian and member of the Cadre, and steered clear of him. It provides a terrible Christian witness.


    Quote Originally Posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    What is inconsistent about it?
    Jesus' teachings throughout the gospels consistently rejects the ritual purity requirements of the law and emphasise helping those in need as being all-important. This passage with its emphasis on adherence to even the smallest parts of the law runs pretty squarely contrary to that theme.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Starlight View Post
    When I saw JPH was the final poster in this thread, I predicted two things..
    1) Starscream running away with his buttocks in flames.

    2) Starscream playing the usual Victim Scheme he's had in practice for over 200 million years.

    It's a fine excuse to ignore the weaknesses in his pitiable "arguments" he got out of the gumball machine.


    econsistently rejects the ritual purity requirements of the law and emphasise helping those in need as being all-important. This passage with its emphasis on adherence to even the smallest parts of the law runs pretty squarely contrary to that theme.
    And as shown, Starscream's fanciful notion that some such "theme" exists is a figment of his imagination caused by his profound ignorance of covenantal law and the principles of honor. The Jesus Seminar was slapped hard for being ignorant of such things, and the tradition continues.

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    Department Head Apologiaphoenix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starlight View Post


    Jesus' teachings throughout the gospels consistently rejects the ritual purity requirements of the law and emphasise helping those in need as being all-important. This passage with its emphasis on adherence to even the smallest parts of the law runs pretty squarely contrary to that theme.
    No they don't. When he cleanses a leper, He instructs the leper to go show himself to the priests. Jesus doesn't tell others to do things that violate ritual purity, but seeing as He is YHWH in the flesh, He can transfer purity.

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    tWebber Starlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jpholding View Post
    covenantal law and the principles of honor.
    You seem to like to use these phrases in a very vague way in your apologetics as if they were some sort of catch-all apologetic excuse that could answer almost any concern. They aren't. Your severe misuse of these makes it pretty clear you don't understand those concepts and haven't put the time you should into studying them that you should. Which is unfortunate because understanding the social-historical context of the bible and the honor-shame society of the time is pretty critical to understanding the biblical texts accurately. And the fact that you apparently think you know what they are, when you clearly don't, is probably impeding your further learning.

    If you want to improve your understanding of these ideas, there's a bunch of decent stuff by Malina & Pilch & Rohrbaugh together and separately which can give you a firm grasp of the basics of NT culture, or frankly anything titled The New Testament in it's cultural context or similar. With regard to ideas about covenantal law, there are enough different views among scholars that it's hard to recommend any particular thing, but maybe reading Sanders' Paul and Palestinian Judaism, and VanLandingham's Judgment & Justification In Early Judaism And The Apostle Paul, would together introduce you to a couple of different viewpoints.

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    tWebber Starlight's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    but seeing as He is YHWH in the flesh
    I find it interesting that the gospels are very consistent with regard to their reports of how the general public of the time saw Jesus:

    Matt 21:11 The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”

    Matt 21:46 They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.

    Mark 6:14-15 Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.” But others said, “It is Elijah.” And others said, “It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.”

    Luke 7:16 and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen among us!”

    Luke 9:19 “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They answered, “John the Baptist; but others, Elijah; and still others, that one of the ancient prophets has arisen.”

    Luke 24:19 "Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people"

    John 6:14 When the people saw the sign that he had done, they began to say, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world.”

    John 7:40 some in the crowd said, “This is really the prophet.”

    John 9:17 So they said again to the blind man, “What do you say about him? It was your eyes he opened.” He said, “He is a prophet.”

    There are plenty more passages to the same effect. The gospels are clear that the way the general public understood Jesus, including many he interacted with directly (e.g. healed), was in the traditional Jewish category of "prophet". Possibly a resurrection/reincarnation of a previous specific prophet.

    Jesus own public statements don't seem to reject this public understanding of himself as a prophet, and at times he reaffirms it pretty explicitly:

    Luke 13:33 Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed outside of Jerusalem.

    Mat 13:57 / Luke 4:24 / John 4:44 Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor except in their own country and in their own house."


    I think it's fair to say that if the gospel writers were wanting to project their own theology back onto Jesus, the easiest way for them to do that would be in their narration sections where they are outright giving their own theology (e.g. John 1:1), and the second-easiest would be to record Jesus saying things in private to the disciples (e.g. Matt 16:16,20) because nobody could fact-check secret/private teachings (and indeed, a number of writings about private/secret teachings of Jesus seem to have appeared in the 2nd century). Whereas, insofar as there were people around who had heard Jesus themselves or knew the stories about Jesus' preaching, it would be harder for the gospel writers to take liberties with misrepresenting the public's understanding of Jesus and with the public teachings of Jesus. It seems pretty clear that in his lifetime Jesus was understood by the public to be a prophet - all the gospels attest to this, and that later some of his followers would convince themselves that he was something more than a prophet, and that perhaps (or perhaps not) he had given hints of this to a chosen few in some private teachings not known to the general populace (and I would say we can see a bit of a progression over time with regard to exactly what 'more than' a prophet actually entailed).

    But the gospels attest that the public's understanding of Jesus was as a prophet. So I think you're doing a bit of disservice to the text in this thread when you try and reinterpret the Sermon on the Mount through your own God-Incarnate theology and point to things like speaking with authority as proof of that God-Incarnate theology. The gospels are clear that those who heard him immediately thought "prophet". And I'll grant you your point that this was probably because he taught with authority unlike the standard teachers of the law, who didn't purport to be prophets or to be giving new teachings from God like prophets were understood to do.
    Last edited by Starlight; 06-05-2020 at 12:35 AM.

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    Department Head Apologiaphoenix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starlight View Post
    I find it interesting that the gospels are very consistent with regard to their reports of how the general public of the time saw Jesus:

    Matt 21:11 The crowds were saying, “This is the prophet Jesus from Nazareth in Galilee.”

    Matt 21:46 They wanted to arrest him, but they feared the crowds, because they regarded him as a prophet.

    Mark 6:14-15 Some were saying, “John the baptizer has been raised from the dead; and for this reason these powers are at work in him.” But others said, “It is Elijah.” And others said, “It is a prophet, like one of the prophets of old.”

    Luke 7:16 and they glorified God, saying, “A great prophet has risen among us!”

    Luke 9:19 “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They answered, “John the Baptist; but others, Elijah; and still others, that one of the ancient prophets has arisen.”

    Luke 24:19 "Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people"

    John 6:14 When the people saw the sign that he had done, they began to say, “This is indeed the prophet who is to come into the world.”

    John 7:40 some in the crowd said, “This is really the prophet.”

    John 9:17 So they said again to the blind man, “What do you say about him? It was your eyes he opened.” He said, “He is a prophet.”

    There are plenty more passages to the same effect. The gospels are clear that the way the general public understood Jesus, including many he interacted with directly (e.g. healed), was in the traditional Jewish category of "prophet". Possibly a resurrection/reincarnation of a previous specific prophet.

    Jesus own public statements don't seem to reject this public understanding of himself as a prophet, and at times he reaffirms it pretty explicitly:

    Luke 13:33 Yet today, tomorrow, and the next day I must be on my way, because it is impossible for a prophet to be killed outside of Jerusalem.

    Mat 13:57 / Luke 4:24 / John 4:44 Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor except in their own country and in their own house."
    I don't have a problem with those. It's not like Jesus was fulfilling the Muslim claim of traveling around Judea saying "I am God. Worship me." If Jesus makes those statements, they are more implicit than explicit.

    I think it's fair to say that if the gospel writers were wanting to project their own theology back onto Jesus, the easiest way for them to do that would be in their narration sections where they are outright giving their own theology (e.g. John 1:1), and the second-easiest would be to record Jesus saying things in private to the disciples (e.g. Matt 16:16,20) because nobody could fact-check secret/private teachings (and indeed, a number of writings about private/secret teachings of Jesus seem to have appeared in the 2nd century). Whereas, insofar as there were people around who had heard Jesus themselves or knew the stories about Jesus' preaching, it would be harder for the gospel writers to take liberties with misrepresenting the public's understanding of Jesus and with the public teachings of Jesus. It seems pretty clear that in his lifetime Jesus was understood by the public to be a prophet - all the gospels attest to this, and that later some of his followers would convince themselves that he was something more than a prophet, and that perhaps (or perhaps not) he had given hints of this to a chosen few in some private teachings not known to the general populace (and I would say we can see a bit of a progression over time with regard to exactly what 'more than' a prophet actually entailed).

    But the gospels attest that the public's understanding of Jesus was as a prophet. So I think you're doing a bit of disservice to the text in this thread when you try and reinterpret the Sermon on the Mount through your own God-Incarnate theology and point to things like speaking with authority as proof of that God-Incarnate theology. The gospels are clear that those who heard him immediately thought "prophet". And I'll grant you your point that this was probably because he taught with authority unlike the standard teachers of the law, who didn't purport to be prophets or to be giving new teachings from God like prophets were understood to do.
    I take it you're not familiar with the Early High Christology Club that shows a fully deified Jesus coming right out of the gates at the resurrection. If you want to dismiss private statements made, then fine. Let's go with public ones. Jesus's healing of the paralytic has him claiming He can forgive sins. Jesus with the Pharisees says that one greater than the Temple is here and one greater than the Sabbath is here. Jesus tells His disciples that they would sit on twelve thrones judging the twelve tribes. You can say that's private, but would a later writer make up this statement seeing as everyone knows Judas isn't one of those who will sit? If the twelve apostles sit on 12 thrones, where does Jesus see Himself sitting? Jesus touches lepers and heals them making them clean presenting Himself as a walking temple.

    In the Pauline epistles, we have the same thing. Maranatha is an Aramaic saying which puts it early and describing Jesus as the Lord who is to come. Paul in Romans says whoever calls on the name of the Lord will be saved equating YHWH with Jesus. In 1 Cor. 8, Paul Christianizes the Shema and puts Jesus in it.

    There is a lot more to explain about Jesus if He is not fully deity.

  7. Amen DesertBerean amen'd this post.
  8. #17
    Department Head Apologiaphoenix's Avatar
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    What about your hatred of your brother?

    Link

    ------

    Why should you not hate your brother? Let’s plunge into the Deeper Waters and find out.

    He hurt Allie.

    That’s all you need to know at the start. I won’t go into who it was or what he did, but he really hurt Allie. I was at an Evangelical Philosophical Society meeting and I saw someone sitting in front of me. They looked like him from behind.

    I had rage.

    Honest rage.

    When I left later, I saw that it wasn’t him, and thankfully I didn’t do anything the whole time. Later at that event, I’m hearing Clay Jones speak. Clay Jones is a wonderful apologist who talks so much about the problem of evil, and in this talk he gives me an insight that has stuck with me today. He looks at this section in the Sermon on the Mount as Jesus giving a cost-benefit analysis.

    Let’s look at what Jesus says.

    “You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder; and whoever murders will be liable to judgment.’ 22 But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother will be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother will be liable to the council; and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ will be liable to the hell of fire. 23 So if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, 24 leave your gift there before the altar and go. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. 25 Come to terms quickly with your accuser while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison. 26 Truly, I say to you, you will never get out until you have paid the last penny.

    Why is it that you shouldn’t hate your brother in your heart?

    Because it means that if you hate him and the chance came up and you thought the benefits outweighed the costs, you would murder him.

    I spoke to Clay that evening and we arranged to talk later on together. It’s something that has stuck with me. I am tempted many times with a hatred for someone. If I do that though, that hatred really doesn’t do anything to the person. It just hurts me.

    If I allow it to foster, it becomes a poison that tears away at my own soul. I was created to love and be loved. If I live with that kind of hatred, then I am doing the exact opposite of my purpose.

    This doesn’t mean that we need to make a statement that all hate is wrong. It’s not. There are things you should hate. If you love all people, you should hate racism. If you love women, you should hate rape. If you love animals, you should hate animal cruelty. The reason you should hate something, is because you truly love something that you ought to love.

    What about calling your brother a fool? Didn’t Jesus call the Pharisees fools? Didn’t Paul refer to the Galatians as foolish? Yes on both counts. It depends on the nature of your heart.

    Often times when guys get together, one thing they do to one another is trash talk, especially if they play games together. Do they really mean to hurt one another with the insults? Not at all. It’s just expected behavior. In some ways, when men insult one another, it can actually be a way of bonding and showing love to one another.

    Some insults aren’t like that. Some insults are designed to destroy. Not only destroy, but destroy the person. Now I am not one who rules out insults in argumentation. It’s hard to do that when you see it being done regularly in Scripture. I am one who says that you need to check your heart.

    If you have honest hatred for the person you are answering or evangelizing, then you need to step away from that. You can hate the system all you want to. In fact, you should. I hate atheism, but I should love atheists. I hate Islam, but I should love Muslims. I hate Mormonism, but I should love Mormons, etc.

    Jesus is telling us to check our hearts. Do we honestly have hatred for the person that we are talking to. Left unchecked, that hatred will turn into murder if it is allowed to reach full fruition. The only thing holding us back is fear of consequences.

    Note also that Jesus when doing these things is not downplaying the Law. He is seriously upping the ante. Many of us can go through life very easily without murdering someone. That’s not much of an accomplishment. To deal with the hatred in your heart? That’s huge.

    And if you want to follow the way of Jesus, you have to work to do the same.

    In Christ,
    Nick Peters

  9. #18
    tWebber
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    Quote Originally Posted by Starlight View Post
    You seem to like to use these phrases in a very vague way
    It's not vague at all, you're simply an ignorant bigot kneeling on the necks of members of ancient cultures while you pretend to not be a racist.

    Your severe misuse of these makes it pretty clear you don't understand those concepts and haven't put the time you should into studying them that you should.

    All yap, no explanation or rebuttal/response. Typical Starscream. It was Malina, Pilch, Rohrbaugh, and many more of their quality I took this all from; and you are the very example of the sort of decontextualizing bigot they condemn.

    With regard to ideas about covenantal law, there are enough different views among scholars that it's hard to recommend any particular thing, but maybe reading Sanders' Paul and Palestinian Judaism, and VanLandingham's Judgment & Justification In Early Judaism And The Apostle Paul, would together introduce
    Vague appeals to diversity absent direct application = tactic of loser in over his head. The only people you fool with that kind of buffalo dung blatherskeit are MAGA fanatics. Intelligent and well read people, in contrast, just laugh at you as you gyrate on a stick like a stuck cockroach. Seeing you pontificate on the Bible is like listening to Trump extemporize on wind turbines causing cancer. You stable genius!
    Last edited by jpholding; 06-05-2020 at 05:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    No they don't. When he cleanses a leper, He instructs the leper to go show himself to the priests. Jesus doesn't tell others to do things that violate ritual purity, but seeing as He is YHWH in the flesh, He can transfer purity.
    I thought Jesus was just YHWH's son. Was he just the son,? Or was Jesus both the father and the son? A portion of each, or what? Did he have some of the holy spirit in him too? Or did he separate from the other two when he bcame flesh?
    Last edited by JimL; 06-05-2020 at 10:29 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JimL View Post
    I thought Jesus was just YHWH's son. Was he just the son,? Or was Jesus both the father and the son? A portion of each, or what? Did he have some of the holy spirit in him too? Or did he separate from the other two when he bcame flesh?
    Looks it up in Two Corinthians, Donald. That's about the level of your education, based on the above.

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