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And the Sun Stood Still


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#181    Jor-el

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 05:47 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 09 May 2013 - 05:19 PM, said:

Do you remember why God granted us with the attribute of freewill? Because He expects us to do what we want out of our own willingness and not like a robot or irrational animal. Otherwise how could we be punished if the will was not in us to do evil but because that's what God wants us to do? Therefore there is no truth in the assertion that we do what God wants us to do. We do what we want to do for good or for evil. Just prior to the murder of Abel, the Lord appeared to Cain in a vision and told him: "If you do well, you can hold up your head; but if not, sin will be lurking at the door urging toward you, yet you can be its master." It means that our attribute of free will is subject to the law of cause and effect. (Gen.4:7)

I believe in free will, and you have it, but God also radically changes peoples lives when he intends it. It happened to me, I would never have become a believer if God had not intervened directly in my life and I found out he was real. I was one of those snickering atheists you mentioned earlier, it didn't stop God one bit.

Some experiences change you, even when you don't intend them to.

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-C. S. Lewis


#182    Ben Masada

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 07:02 PM

View PostJor-el, on 09 May 2013 - 05:47 PM, said:

I believe in free will, and you have it, but God also radically changes peoples lives when he intends it. It happened to me, I would never have become a believer if God had not intervened directly in my life and I found out he was real. I was one of those snickering atheists you mentioned earlier, it didn't stop God one bit.

Some experiences change you, even when you don't intend them to.

It does and I am going to show you it does. Give yourself some credit! free will is second only to intellect. That's what distinguishes us from the irrational animal. God does not change people's lives when He intends to. No, He doesn't. We attribute to God whatever happens to us for the sake of piety. Any literal intervension of God in our affairs would be tantamount to contradict His own design.  Okay, you used to be an atheist and found out the truth of God's existence. You might have been inspired or metaphorically "pushed" so-to-speak on that direction but no active change in your nature took place by an act of God. What about those who become atheists? What about those who become Muslims? What about those who become Jewish?  Was it God who changed their minds into becoming whatever they decided to? Would God change some people to stand against Himself?  If you still agree, how could God punish some one for standing against Himself when He was the author of the change? As you can see, it does not make sense at all. So, give yourself some credit and take responsibility not only over the evil you do but also of what is good.

Edited by Ben Masada, 15 May 2013 - 07:02 PM.


#183    Jor-el

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Posted 15 May 2013 - 10:56 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 15 May 2013 - 07:02 PM, said:

It does and I am going to show you it does. Give yourself some credit! free will is second only to intellect. That's what distinguishes us from the irrational animal. God does not change people's lives when He intends to. No, He doesn't. We attribute to God whatever happens to us for the sake of piety. Any literal intervension of God in our affairs would be tantamount to contradict His own design.  Okay, you used to be an atheist and found out the truth of God's existence. You might have been inspired or metaphorically "pushed" so-to-speak on that direction but no active change in your nature took place by an act of God. What about those who become atheists? What about those who become Muslims? What about those who become Jewish?  Was it God who changed their minds into becoming whatever they decided to? Would God change some people to stand against Himself?  If you still agree, how could God punish some one for standing against Himself when He was the author of the change? As you can see, it does not make sense at all. So, give yourself some credit and take responsibility not only over the evil you do but also of what is good.

Tell me, since you are so well versed in scripture, Did Saul of Tarsus who later became Paul the Apostle, change because he felt like it or was he pushed?

I was indeed pushed, but I also needed to take the 1st step after that push. Yes God does indeed intervene, He did it for me, and he did it for Paul. He has done it for countless others. Sometimes the push is a gentle thing, for other it is a radical shove, as happened to me and to Paul but all of us, after that push, had to accept the evidence of our senses and state, ok God, I accept.

Does he do this for everybody?

yes I think so, more than once I think, but again the choice to accept rests on the individual. I heard and gave in to belief, others have not.

My words in the previous post do not neglect free will and choice, they embrace it.

Do you somehow think God wants unwilling believers? No, if that were the case he would simply appear before all of mankind and lay down the Law, but then he would not have sons and daughters, he would have slaves.

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#184    Ben Masada

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:04 PM

View PostJor-el, on 15 May 2013 - 10:56 PM, said:

Tell me, since you are so well versed in scripture, Did Saul of Tarsus who later became Paul the Apostle, change because he felt like it or was he pushed?

I was indeed pushed, but I also needed to take the 1st step after that push. Yes God does indeed intervene, He did it for me, and he did it for Paul. He has done it for countless others. Sometimes the push is a gentle thing, for other it is a radical shove, as happened to me and to Paul but all of us, after that push, had to accept the evidence of our senses and state, ok God, I accept.

Does he do this for everybody?

yes I think so, more than once I think, but again the choice to accept rests on the individual. I heard and gave in to belief, others have not.

My words in the previous post do not neglect free will and choice, they embrace it.

Do you somehow think God wants unwilling believers? No, if that were the case he would simply appear before all of mankind and lay down the Law, but then he would not have sons and daughters, he would have slaves.

Paul's fall from his horse on the Road to Damascus had nothing to do with a divine call to change his mind about what he was doing. It was a hot day as I know by self-experience how the sun is hot in the Middle East summer. The heat that day exacerbated Paul's epileptic condition and he fell. During these attacks people hear voices and their sight is usually affected, especially aggravated by the sun. The first thing to come to mind was what was bothering him for too long. He figured that by physically persecuting the Nazarenes he would only enhance their growth. Therefore he decided to change his tactics. He would join the Sect and persecute them from within. Fortunately he was rejected as a disciple but it didn't help. He created his own creed and the battle against the Nazarenes went on. (Acts 9:26; 11:26)  You say above that "later he became an apostle." Perhaps a self-anointed apostle because that Jesus made him an apostle we have only his word which was as good as himself. Even the Apostles of Jesus did not believe him. The apostles used to be 12; one got lost and the others replaced Judas with Mathias. (Acts 1:26) What kind of apostle was Paul, the 13th? The apostles could not be 11 or 13 but 12.


#185    Jor-el

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Posted 17 May 2013 - 09:37 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 17 May 2013 - 09:04 PM, said:

Paul's fall from his horse on the Road to Damascus had nothing to do with a divine call to change his mind about what he was doing. It was a hot day as I know by self-experience how the sun is hot in the Middle East summer. The heat that day exacerbated Paul's epileptic condition and he fell. During these attacks people hear voices and their sight is usually affected, especially aggravated by the sun. The first thing to come to mind was what was bothering him for too long. He figured that by physically persecuting the Nazarenes he would only enhance their growth. Therefore he decided to change his tactics. He would join the Sect and persecute them from within. Fortunately he was rejected as a disciple but it didn't help. He created his own creed and the battle against the Nazarenes went on. (Acts 9:26; 11:26)  You say above that "later he became an apostle." Perhaps a self-anointed apostle because that Jesus made him an apostle we have only his word which was as good as himself. Even the Apostles of Jesus did not believe him. The apostles used to be 12; one got lost and the others replaced Judas with Mathias. (Acts 1:26) What kind of apostle was Paul, the 13th? The apostles could not be 11 or 13 but 12.

The apostles started with 12, then there were 70 and now there are countless men and women, who are apostles.... it is ministry, a calling from God.

You can explain away Pauls conversion with sunstroke or epilepsy, but I have a better explanation... God appeared to him and that changed his life... a righteous murderer becomes an ambassador for Christ. A bondservant to Christ.

In his own words:

I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”

That is the man I admire, and whose example very few can live up to.

I too had my encounter with God and that changed me as well, you can disbelieve it all you want but the reason why I am a believer is only because of that encounter, I very much doubt that anything else would have convinced me. Not the bible, not other people and certainly not Christians.

So as I said, I'll leave you to him, he has a plan for you.

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#186    Ben Masada

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 05:33 PM

View PostJor-el, on 17 May 2013 - 09:37 PM, said:

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The apostles started with 12, then there were 70 and now there are countless men and women, who are apostles.... it is ministry, a calling from God.

The apostles were 12 and remained 12 to the last one of them. The disciples yes were 70 who took special orders from Jesus but enjoyed a lower level than that of the Apostles.

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You can explain away Pauls conversion with sunstroke or epilepsy, but I have a better explanation... God appeared to him and that changed his life... a righteous murderer becomes an ambassador for Christ. A bondservant to Christ.

God did not appear to Paul for three reasons: First, Paul was not a prophet; second, he was not sleeping but riding a horse; unless the whole thing was happening in a dream or vision; and third, He could not have been made an apostle without the knowledge of the 12. when Paul tried to join the Sect of the Nazarenes he was rejected and sent back to Tarsus where he belonged. (Acts 9:26,30)

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In his own words: I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me. I do not set aside the grace of God; for if righteousness comes through the law, then Christ died in vain.”


Is it the same "Christ" whom Paul thanked for the priviledge to serve God's Law in his mind and the law of sin in his flesh? (Rom.7:25) I guess not because Jesus himself said that no one can serve two masters. And with regards to having Jesus died in vain, he could have avoided if he had taken the advice of the Pharisees to stop his disciples from proclaiming him king of the Jews at the entrance of Jerusalem that day. That's what caused the crucifixion. (Luke 19:37-40)

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That is the man I admire, and whose example very few can live up to.

That's the man I despise for his policy of Replacement Theology which is an act of vandalism against Judaism.

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I too had my encounter with God and that changed me as well, you can disbelieve it all you want but the reason why I am a believer is only because of that encounter, I very much doubt that anything else would have convinced me. Not the bible, not other people and certainly not Christians.

Madre Teresa also had an encounter with God to dedicate all her life to the Catholic Church.

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So as I said, I'll leave you to him, he has a plan for you.

He definitely does, you can say that again. That's why I have enriched Judaism with 11 souls already, baruch haShem!


#187    Jor-el

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Posted 21 May 2013 - 08:38 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 21 May 2013 - 05:33 PM, said:

The apostles were 12 and remained 12 to the last one of them. The disciples yes were 70 who took special orders from Jesus but enjoyed a lower level than that of the Apostles.

Well then you have a problem because there were a number of recognized apostles (besides the 12) within the church that can be found within the New Testament. A few of them were even women.

After the twelve…
Matthias Judas replacement) Acts 1:26
Barnabas Acts 14:14
Paul (Saul of Tarsus new name) Rom 1:1
Epaphroditus Php 2:25
James, Jesus half brother Gal 1:19
Silvanus 1 Thes 1:1; 2:6
Timothy 1 Thes 1:1; 2:6

All these are referred to as apostles...


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God did not appear to Paul for three reasons: First, Paul was not a prophet; second, he was not sleeping but riding a horse; unless the whole thing was happening in a dream or vision; and third, He could not have been made an apostle without the knowledge of the 12. when Paul tried to join the Sect of the Nazarenes he was rejected and sent back to Tarsus where he belonged. (Acts 9:26,30)

See, there you go assuming... No Paul was not a prophet, but it seems only you believe that God can only speak to prophets, whereas the bible and I clearly state that God can speak to any man and he doesn't have to be sleeping, God can actually speak to someone who is riding a horse and wide awake. Finally yes he was rejected because these people knew him as a killer of Christians, the bible also says that later on he was indeed accepted.

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Is it the same "Christ" whom Paul thanked for the privilege to serve God's Law in his mind and the law of sin in his flesh? (Rom.7:25) I guess not because Jesus himself said that no one can serve two masters. And with regards to having Jesus died in vain, he could have avoided if he had taken the advice of the Pharisees to stop his disciples from proclaiming him king of the Jews at the entrance of Jerusalem that day. That's what caused the crucifixion. (Luke 19:37-40)

Well are you not a slave to sin or have you somehow stopped sinning all of a sudden unlike the rest of us mere humans?

We can have the best of intentions never to sin again, it doesn't help us one bit, because every so often we all get whammied and sin again. God has given us new minds and new hearts, but our bodies remain the same and subject to sin, come-on what exactly do you think Paul was talking about here?

If you are truly honest you know that we cannot help but be subject to sin, even when we are strong in God. David, a man after Gods own heart, sinned terribly, and yet remained loved by God because his heart was in the right place. Only someone who isn't human could judge us humans on the subject of sin, none of us can throw the 1st rock, not even you.

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That's the man I despise for his policy of Replacement Theology which is an act of vandalism against Judaism.

Simply because you have not understood his words, even if you think you have, you are seeing them in a light they were never intended to be used as the church has done.

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Madre Teresa also had an encounter with God to dedicate all her life to the Catholic Church.

Incorrect, she dedicated her whole life to God, the church merely used her for propaganda. And even she had many flaws, some of which could be called sin.

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He definitely does, you can say that again. That's why I have enriched Judaism with 11 souls already, baruch haShem!

And I heartily applaud you, bringing people to God is a wonderful thing. I have done my fair share of bringing people to god, although I must be honest, I don't keep tabs on the number.

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#188    Ben Masada

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 08:08 PM

View PostJor-el, on 21 May 2013 - 08:38 PM, said:

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Well then you have a problem because there were a number of recognized apostles (besides the 12) within the church that can be found within the New Testament. A few of them were even women.

None of them was an apostle. It was part of Jewish tradition for Torah teachers to gather 12 apostles according to the 12 Tribes of Israel. All others were disciples.

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After the twelve…
Matthias Judas replacement) Acts 1:26
Barnabas Acts 14:14
Paul (Saul of Tarsus new name) Rom 1:1
Epaphroditus Php 2:25
James, Jesus half brother Gal 1:19
Silvanus 1 Thes 1:1; 2:6
Timothy 1 Thes 1:1; 2:6

All these are referred to as apostles...

None of them except for Mathias was an apostle. Barnabas was a senior Nazarene that for some weird reason ganged up with Paul and was referred to as an apostle according to the gospel of Paul. This was a self-claimed apostle of a spurious gospel never recognized by James and the Elders in Jerusalem. Epaphhroditus an apostle according to Paul's gospel. James was the head of the Sect of the Nazarenes on behalf of Jesus to keep the physical chain of representation as the Sect was organized in the name of Jesus. Silvanus was Paul's scribe whom Paul would dictate his letters. And Timothy a personal disciple of Paul.

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See, there you go assuming... No Paul was not a prophet, but it seems only you believe that God can only speak to prophets, whereas the bible and I clearly state that God can speak to any man and he doesn't have to be sleeping, God can actually speak to someone who is riding a horse and wide awake. Finally yes he was rejected because these people knew him as a killer of Christians, the bible also says that later on he was indeed accepted.

I am assuming nothing. I am just being loyal to Torah in Numbers 12:6. Why don't you quote your assertion that God actually appeared to someone and spoke to him or her viva-voce? Because I am afraid it never happened.

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Well are you not a slave to sin or have you somehow stopped sinning all of a sudden unlike the rest of us mere humans?

No, I am not a slave to sin. Subject to sin though, but not a slave. There is a huge difference between being a slave to sin and only subject to sin. Subject to sin we all are as mistakes we make by definition of sin. But to be slave to sin is to lack the spiritual stamina to get rid of a sinful condition as was the struggle of Paul with his thorn in the flesh. (Rom. 7:25)

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We can have the best of intentions never to sin again, it doesn't help us one bit, because every so often we all get whammied and sin again. God has given us new minds and new hearts, but our bodies remain the same and subject to sin, come-on what exactly do you think Paul was talking about here?

We can never say we will never sin again but it is up to us to remain slave of sin or not. Just prior to the murder of Abel by Cain the Lord appeared to Cain in a dream and said, "Why are you so resentful and crestfallen? If you do well you can hold up your head; but if not sin is lurking at the door, its urge is toward you, yet you can be his master." (Gen.4:6,7) That's an allusion to man's free will implied to be used against sin.

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If you are truly honest you know that we cannot help but be subject to sin, even when we are strong in God. David, a man after Gods own heart, sinned terribly, and yet remained loved by God because his heart was in the right place. Only someone who isn't human could judge us humans on the subject of sin, none of us can throw the 1st rock, not even you.

...and not even Jesus. Do you remember why he said to the woman "Neither do I throw you the rock?" For the same reason why the others could not. Because Jesus too was subject to sin.

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Simply because you have not understood his words, even if you think you have, you are seeing them in a light they were never intended to be used as the church has done.

Here you are right. I cannot understand his words as you do because I am not a Christian and neither was Jesus. We understand each other as Jews.

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Incorrect, she dedicated her whole life to God, the church merely used her for propaganda. And even she had many flaws, some of which could be called sin.

And so had Jesus who broke the Golden Rule more than several times. Just to refresh the Golden Rule to you, "Don't do unto others what you would not like they did unto you." Jesus armed himself with a whip to cause physical and financial damages to the money-changers before the temple. (John 2:15) I wonder if he was reminded of that when he was being whipped by the Romans. According to Matthew 23:13-33 Jesus insulted the Pharisees with all sorts of woes which no one would like to be addressed to as. The Golden Rule is part of the six commandments on the second part of the Decalogue.

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And I heartily applaud you, bringing people to God is a wonderful thing. I have done my fair share of bringing people to god, although I must be honest, I don't keep tabs on the number.

I am also being honest too. I keep tab only on those I am reported to of their conversions or I assisted to and saw the certificates. Of 5 of them I have seen the certificates. And all of them Orthodox style mind you. Now of those I have not heard of,  the Lord knows.


#189    Jor-el

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 08:42 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 23 May 2013 - 08:08 PM, said:

None of them was an apostle. It was part of Jewish tradition for Torah teachers to gather 12 apostles according to the 12 Tribes of Israel. All others were disciples.

What does "Apostle" mean?

Seriously you seem to give this word and inordinate importance, I want you to tell me what it means and why it can't be substituted by other words such as Missionary, or Evangelist or even Disciple?


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None of them except for Mathias was an apostle. Barnabas was a senior Nazarene that for some weird reason ganged up with Paul and was referred to as an apostle according to the gospel of Paul. This was a self-claimed apostle of a spurious gospel never recognized by James and the Elders in Jerusalem. Epaphhroditus an apostle according to Paul's gospel. James was the head of the Sect of the Nazarenes on behalf of Jesus to keep the physical chain of representation as the Sect was organized in the name of Jesus. Silvanus was Paul's scribe whom Paul would dictate his letters. And Timothy a personal disciple of Paul.

In you view, but the word is right there used of these people, whether you like it or not, that means that it is your view that conflicts with the bible, not mine.

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I am assuming nothing. I am just being loyal to Torah in Numbers 12:6. Why don't you quote your assertion that God actually appeared to someone and spoke to him or her viva-voce? Because I am afraid it never happened.

Ok, I'll give you a few, according to the simple reading of the text which is quite evident without adding or subtracting interpretation as you usually do...

Genesis 12:7

The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land."

1 Kings 9:2-5

2 the Lord appeared to him a second time, as he had appeared to him at Gibeon. 3 The Lord said to him:
“I have heard the prayer and plea you have made before me; I have consecrated this temple, which you have built, by putting my Name there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there.
4 “As for you, if you walk before me faithfully with integrity of heart and uprightness, as David your father did, and do all I command and observe my decrees and laws, 5 I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever, as I promised David your father when I said, ‘You shall never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’

Genesis 26:2

The LORD appeared to Isaac and said, "Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live.

See, no visions no dreams no nothing, it is there for anyone to read, in black and white. Now let me contrast that with something else...

1 Kings 3:5

At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you."

so can you tell me the difference between those verses? In the 1st 3, there is no indication of a dream or vision or anything else, in the last there is a specific indication that God appeared within a dream. See, that is why everyone believes as I do, that God can in fact appear whenever he wants to and speak to them viva-voce. You can cry Numbers 12:6 all you want, the evidence of the text speaks for itself. In other words, if someone is interpreting something incorrectly, it ain't me.

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No, I am not a slave to sin. Subject to sin though, but not a slave. There is a huge difference between being a slave to sin and only subject to sin. Subject to sin we all are as mistakes we make by definition of sin. But to be slave to sin is to lack the spiritual stamina to get rid of a sinful condition as was the struggle of Paul with his thorn in the flesh. (Rom. 7:25)

Hmm, I consider myself corrected, I misphrased the question. You and I are both subject to sin then, or we can say, you and I are both influenced by sin, we can succumb to it, but we are not its slaves. Yet it is also true that our very natures are sinful, or tend to sin.

If you do not agree, with that then so be it, I do not believe humans have non-sinful natures, we can overcome that nature through faith and prayer, with the help of God, but our natures remain sinful. And it is here that I side with Paul, since he too was honest about this, his nature was sinful, like any other human being even when within his mind and heart he wanted to serve God.

Oh and I would really love to have the following question answered... What was Pauls thorn in the flesh? You are so certain it was  a sin of some kind, so please enlighten us.

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We can never say we will never sin again but it is up to us to remain slave of sin or not. Just prior to the murder of Abel by Cain the Lord appeared to Cain in a dream and said, "Why are you so resentful and crestfallen? If you do well you can hold up your head; but if not sin is lurking at the door, its urge is toward you, yet you can be his master." (Gen.4:6,7) That's an allusion to man's free will implied to be used against sin.

Oh absolutely, I agree, we have the power to be the master of our sinful natures, but truthfully, how often do you succeed in overcoming it? Sure you can probably control the influence of most sins, but I am sure that one or two just keep slipping by you every chance they get. Again, I'm not guessing, it is called human nature and sinful nature, you and I are included, even if you don't agree, or are unwilling to admit it.

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...and not even Jesus. Do you remember why he said to the woman "Neither do I throw you the rock?" For the same reason why the others could not. Because Jesus too was subject to sin.

Oh, and where is an example of his sin?

There are none, not because he was not subject to sin, but unlike us, he did indeed master sin from the very beginning.

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Here you are right. I cannot understand his words as you do because I am not a Christian and neither was Jesus. We understand each other as Jews.

Funny, real funny....

I understand his words as a Jew, not as a Christian. Unlike most Christians I understand exactly what he is saying as a Jew, hence the reason I know Replacement theology to be unbiblical and an usurpation of Pauls words.

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And so had Jesus who broke the Golden Rule more than several times. Just to refresh the Golden Rule to you, "Don't do unto others what you would not like they did unto you." Jesus armed himself with a whip to cause physical and financial damages to the money-changers before the temple. (John 2:15) I wonder if he was reminded of that when he was being whipped by the Romans. According to Matthew 23:13-33 Jesus insulted the Pharisees with all sorts of woes which no one would like to be addressed to as. The Golden Rule is part of the six commandments on the second part of the Decalogue.

The biblical "Golden Rule is in the positive, not the negative... Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

I am surprised at you, you don't think they deserved it? After what they did and said to Jesus on numerous occasions?

Let me go one step further, how many times did God break the golden rule with the Israelites? In other words how many times did God lose patience with Israel, after being insulted time and again?

Oh I think Jesus showed great restraint. I doubt I could say the same for myself if I were in the same situation.

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-C. S. Lewis


#190    Ben Masada

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 07:11 PM

View PostJor-el, on 24 May 2013 - 08:42 PM, said:


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What does "Apostle" mean?

According to the context at the time of Jesus, Apostle meant to belong with the 12 traditionally chosen disciples to enjoy the inner circle of a Rabbi.

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Seriously you seem to give this word and inordinate importance, I want you to tell me what it means and why it can't be substituted by other words such as Missionary, or Evangelist or even Disciple?

You can substitute the term Apostle by any word you wish but according to a certain Jewish tradition of the time, that's what Apostle meant after the 12 Tribes of Israel.

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Ok, I'll give you a few, according to the simple reading of the text which is quite evident without adding or subtracting interpretation as you usually do...Genesis 12:7 The LORD appeared to Abram and said, "To your offspring I will give this land." 1 Kings 9:2-5 2 the Lord appeared to him a second time, as he had appeared to him at Gibeon. 3 The Lord said to him: “I have heard the prayer and plea you have made before me; I have consecrated this temple, which you have built, by putting my Name there forever. My eyes and my heart will always be there. 4 “As for you, if you walk before me faithfully with integrity of heart and uprightness, as David your father did, and do all I command and observe my decrees and laws, 5 I will establish your royal throne over Israel forever, as I promised David your father when I said, ‘You shall never fail to have a successor on the throne of Israel.’ Genesis 26:2 The LORD appeared to Isaac and said, "Do not go down to Egypt; live in the land where I tell you to live. See, no visions no dreams no nothing, it is there for anyone to read, in black and white. Now let me contrast that with something else... 1 Kings 3:5 At Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said, "Ask for whatever you want me to give you." so can you tell me the difference between those verses? In the 1st 3, there is no indication of a dream or vision or anything else, in the last there is a specific indication that God appeared within a dream. See, that is why everyone believes as I do, that God can in fact appear whenever he wants to and speak to them viva-voce. You can cry Numbers 12:6 all you want, the evidence of the text speaks for itself. In other words, if someone is interpreting something incorrectly, it ain't me.
All the references above regarding God's appearances to men point to the fact that they all happened in a dream or vision. The prophets never found necessary to remind readers or listeners when it was in a dream or vision. It was taken for granted that all divine communications were by those means. (Numb.12:6) To go literal with this is tantamount to dig contradictions in the Tanach.

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And it is here that I side with Paul, since he too was honest about this, his nature was sinful, like any other human being even when within his mind and heart he wanted to serve God.

You are right. Paul was honest alright but at least as he was concerned there was the alternative to accommodate serving God in his mind and sin in his flesh.(Rom.7:25)

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Oh and I would really love to have the following question answered... What was Pauls thorn in the flesh? You are so certain it was  a sin of some kind, so please enlighten us.

Are you sure you are ready for this? As I can see, you did not take my advice to read Romans 7:13-25. Paul was a Hellenistic Jew from birth. Hellenism was born in the Greek culture. Hellenists were too loose as morality was concerned. Well, without much ado, Paul's thorn in the flesh was his struggle against repressed homosexual feelings. He used to be amoral as homosexuality was concerned. He behaved as if homosexuality was the most natural thing that could happen to a man like a different piece of garment a man chose to wear. He had no idea it was a sin. According to Romans 7:13 he had no idea the behavior was sinful. When he found that out the Law which was a good thing brought death to him. Why? Because he could not get rid of that thorn in his flesh. Then in verse 14 he acknowledged that the Law was spiritual but hey, what could he do if he was weak flesh sold into the slavery of sin. He could not get rid of his feelings. He was about to go crazy for he couldn't even understand his own actions. (v.15) Then he declared that he desired to go according to the Law but but sin dwelt in his flesh. (v.20) He was about to go crazy when he came to the conclusion that he could serve God in his mind while sin in his flesh. (v.25) But he made sure that condition could work for him only because he was not bound by the Law.(I Cor.9:20)

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The biblical "Golden Rule is in the positive, not the negative... Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

If that's so, you mean to say that Jesus was getting revenging for his future whipping by the Roman soldiers? You are getting things worse.

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I am surprised at you, you don't think they deserved it? After what they did and said to Jesus on numerous occasions?

They who, the moneychangers? What are you talking about? They had the permission of the High Priest to do their work to make easier to Jews from abroad to change their foreign money into the Temple sheckel. The animal bought with foreign currency would make the sacrifice unkosher. They had nothing to do with Jesus' rage. Jesus should have brought the complaint to the High Priest and not directly at the moneychangers.

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Let me go one step further, how many times did God break the golden rule with the Israelites? In other words how many times did God lose patience with Israel, after being insulted time and again?

Never. Not even a single time. God is not like a man to break the Law or to lose patience with Israel. Those feelings are emotional and God is not like a man to be moved by emotions. In talking about God you are allowed to talk literal but to think metaphorically. Don't forget that Jesus
said, "God is a Spirit." (John 4:24) A Spirit is incorporeal.


#191    Jor-el

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Posted 29 May 2013 - 10:37 PM

View PostBen Masada, on 29 May 2013 - 07:11 PM, said:

According to the context at the time of Jesus, Apostle meant to belong with the 12 traditionally chosen disciples to enjoy the inner circle of a Rabbi.

Incorrect, the word, 1st of all is Greek, no Hebrew. It means "to be sent out", that is why it is alternatively translated to missionary or even Evangelist.

You are in fact confusing the word with disciple. Which is what the 12 were along with many others, they were close to Jesus than the others, but were not set apart and special in any specific way.

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You can substitute the term Apostle by any word you wish but according to a certain Jewish tradition of the time, that's what Apostle meant after the 12 Tribes of Israel.

Demonstrate this by quoting the relevant text... I don't believe you for the simple reason that the word is a Greek word. Show me the relevant Hebrew word.

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All the references above regarding God's appearances to men point to the fact that they all happened in a dream or vision. The prophets never found necessary to remind readers or listeners when it was in a dream or vision. It was taken for granted that all divine communications were by those means. (Numb.12:6) To go literal with this is tantamount to dig contradictions in the Tanach.

You have got to be kidding me... the simple fact that you have passages that specifically state that the person was dreaming or seeing a vision, absolutely destroy that theory. If it was so taken for granted, we would not have single passage stating otherwise.

And the fact that I can stand here defending the Tanach demonstrates that this does not bring contradictions to the text, just to your perception of it, it would be too uncomfortable for you to even admit the possibility that I am right. It would mean that Jesus just may be who we say he is.

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You are right. Paul was honest alright but at least as he was concerned there was the alternative to accommodate serving God in his mind and sin in his flesh.(Rom.7:25)

Again, this is rubbish, it denies the very words of Paul himself...

1 Corinthians 6:9–11

Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.


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Are you sure you are ready for this? As I can see, you did not take my advice to read Romans 7:13-25. Paul was a Hellenistic Jew from birth. Hellenism was born in the Greek culture. Hellenists were too loose as morality was concerned. Well, without much ado, Paul's thorn in the flesh was his struggle against repressed homosexual feelings. He used to be amoral as homosexuality was concerned. He behaved as if homosexuality was the most natural thing that could happen to a man like a different piece of garment a man chose to wear. He had no idea it was a sin. According to Romans 7:13 he had no idea the behavior was sinful. When he found that out the Law which was a good thing brought death to him. Why? Because he could not get rid of that thorn in his flesh. Then in verse 14 he acknowledged that the Law was spiritual but hey, what could he do if he was weak flesh sold into the slavery of sin. He could not get rid of his feelings. He was about to go crazy for he couldn't even understand his own actions. (v.15) Then he declared that he desired to go according to the Law but but sin dwelt in his flesh. (v.20) He was about to go crazy when he came to the conclusion that he could serve God in his mind while sin in his flesh. (v.25) But he made sure that condition could work for him only because he was not bound by the Law.(I Cor.9:20)

Sloppy my friend, as the passage above demonstrates, that if this were true, he was actively condemning himself, which according to you is exactly what he was trying to avoid.

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If that's so, you mean to say that Jesus was getting revenging for his future whipping by the Roman soldiers? You are getting things worse.

No , merely that the bible does not quote this in the negative as you have done. It is always in the positive.

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They who, the moneychangers? What are you talking about? They had the permission of the High Priest to do their work to make easier to Jews from abroad to change their foreign money into the Temple sheckel. The animal bought with foreign currency would make the sacrifice unkosher. They had nothing to do with Jesus' rage. Jesus should have brought the complaint to the High Priest and not directly at the moneychangers.

It was a business pure and simple, God had nothing to do with it, that is the problem. It has been the disgrace of all believers, Jewish and Christian that faith becomes a business. That is what Jesus was in a rage against, the only time we see him doing so. The High Priest in allowing this was part of the business, there was no God here, God wasn't even part of the equation. It was a disgrace then it is a disgrace today.

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Never. Not even a single time. God is not like a man to break the Law or to lose patience with Israel. Those feelings are emotional and God is not like a man to be moved by emotions. In talking about God you are allowed to talk literal but to think metaphorically. Don't forget that Jesus said, "God is a Spirit." (John 4:24) A Spirit is incorporeal.

God allowed Israel to be destroyed and its people sent to Babylon for 70 years. He treated them as they treated him, but even then he held back. There were numerous other times when Israel was continually unfaithful, but they learnt their lesson as a nation in Babylon.

Excavations in Israel have demonstrated that not even in the time of Jesus was the entire nation faithful, only a part of it was.

Edited by Jor-el, 29 May 2013 - 10:38 PM.

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#192    Ben Masada

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Posted 30 May 2013 - 08:25 PM

View PostJor-el, on 29 May 2013 - 10:37 PM, said:

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Incorrect, the word, 1st of all is Greek, no Hebrew. It means "to be sent out", that is why it is alternatively translated to missionary or even Evangelist.

Well, if you want to go that way, why should Gentiles be allowed to vandalize Judaism with Greek religious literature? I know what "Apostle" means in Greek but according to the Jewish tradition of the time the custom was for Rabbis to gather 12 Apostles (especial disciples) after the 12 Tribes of Israel. Jesus had 12 Apostles and 70 regular disciples. Do I have to quote?

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You are in fact confusing the word with disciple. Which is what the 12 were along with many others, they were close to Jesus than the others, but were not set apart and special in any specific way.

That's exactly what they were. The 70 Jesus would send them away in missions. The 12 Jesus used to go along with.

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Demonstrate this by quoting the relevant text... I don't believe you for the simple reason that the word is a Greek word. Show me the relevant Hebrew word.

The NT was written in Greek and by Greeks. The name apostle is given. In Hebrew apostle is any one with a message to be delivered as in "Malach" which means an angel, an emanation, even a man as long as he has something to report.

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You have got to be kidding me... the simple fact that you have passages that specifically state that the person was dreaming or seeing a vision, absolutely destroy that theory. If it was so taken for granted, we would not have single passage stating otherwise.

Jorel, the Tanach was not written for Gentiles but for Jews. It was taken for granted that Jews would not need any further explanation of a procedure that had been previously explained. "If there is a prophet among you that's how I will make Myself known to him." (Numb.12:6) That's it. From then on, anything a prophet would say
"ex-cathedra" it would be from God through dreams or visions.

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And the fact that I can stand here defending the Tanach demonstrates that this does not bring contradictions to the text, just to your perception of it, it would be too uncomfortable for you to even admit the possibility that I am right. It would mean that Jesus just may be who we say he is.

He can't be what you say he is. As he was a Jewish man he is dead. A dead man could not be what you say he is. Have you also replaced his Faith?

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1 Corinthians 6:9–11 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.


This he said about those who are subject to the Law. It didn't work for him who was not subjected to the Law. (I Cor.9:20,21) He was of the kind so to speak of an extraordinary man. If you read "Crime and Punishment" by Dostoevsky you will know what I am talking about.

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Sloppy my friend, as the passage above demonstrates, that if this were true, he was actively condemning himself, which according to you is exactly what he was trying to avoid.

No, he was not. To condemn himself he had to be subject to the Law but he was not. (I Cor.9:20,21)

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It was a business pure and simple, God had nothing to do with it, that is the problem. It has been the disgrace of all believers, Jewish and Christian that faith becomes a business. That is what Jesus was in a rage against, the only time we see him doing so. The High Priest in allowing this was part of the business, there was no God here, God wasn't even part of the equation. It was a disgrace then it is a disgrace today.

You are making a big deal out of something that was allowed to make things easier to Jews from abroad. What was more important, the Temple or the Jews who sanctified the Temple? When the Jews had been eradicated from the Land, darkness had replaced the light. At the end of the exile when the Jews were returning those Gentiles who dwelt in the land of gloom had seen the great light back in the Land. (Isa.9:2) The money changers were there to make things easier for Jews to sacrifice.

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God allowed Israel to be destroyed and its people sent to Babylon for 70 years. He treated them as they treated him, but even then he held back. There were numerous other times when Israel was continually unfaithful, but they learnt their lesson as a nation in Babylon.

Jorel, now I am going to make you jealous of us. Sorry but I will. It does not matter what we do or miss doing. The Lord is stuck with us. Of the other nations He will eventually make an end of them but of us He will only chastise us as we deserve. (Jer.46:28) To chastise for our wrongdoings is love. Just as Hosea could not give up his wife forever even when she played the harlot, so the Lord  could never renounce Israel who had been betrothed to Him. God would chastise no doubt but it would be the chastisement of the jealous lover longing to bring back the beloved to the flesh and pure joy of their first love. Something like that no Gentile as Gentile can share.





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