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desupernaturalized Christianity?


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In reply to an earlier post on Nov 30, 2012 4:08:02 PM PST
A Treatise Concerning Religious Affections

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 9:58:25 AM PST
Harry Marks says:
Macheath -

A nice expression of this truth. I particularly liked refering to the gifts as "graces". However, I think the distancing being done by concern for how mystical effects take place is an unfortunate distraction from the lively implications of recognizing that we are the body. John Howard Yoder's view, that the gifts are distinct from talents in working antithetically to personal ego, is a more helpful formulation. The body of Christ involves functions that are intrinsically for each other and for the world, and almost exclude the possibility of being for ourselves.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 9:25:22 AM PST
Macheath says:
Actually Harry, it's we Catholics that take being part of "the body of Christ" more literally than others do.

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/10663a.htm

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 9:13:15 AM PST
Harry Marks says:
Macheath -

Well, that is the first time I have heard anyone take issue with that passage.

I said "what people in NT times said on the subject." It makes very little difference to me whether Jesus of Nazareth actually said those words (in Aramaic, presumably) or someone put those words in the mouth of the character "Jesus of Nazareth" in the Gospels (as "he who is without sin may throw the first stone" clearly was). Either way, it is what was considered "the sort of thing Jesus would say" and that tells us who they thought he was.

The community is "the body of Christ." We should take that far more literally than we do, IMO.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 6:43:28 AM PST
Jeff Marzano says:
D. Thomas says:

[Do you think the Bible is a great work of philosophy ?]

Christ was a great philosopher, at least as Christians see Him. He was able to explain great truths in terms that everyone can easily understand.

Christ actually lived and became the philosophy He spoke about. He told people that He Himself is the truth in living form.

Saint Augustine shows us what Plato would have been like if he had known about Christianity. We can called Augustine the Christian Plato just as Thomas Aquinas is sometimes called the Christian Aristotle.

Jeff Marzano

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 27, 2012 5:50:56 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 27, 2012 6:00:28 AM PST
Macheath wrote: "desupernaturalized Christianity [...] with no spiritual realm"

I don't see how the supernatural or spiritual realm can be removed from Christianity, or from any religion for that matter. However, Christianity can certainly be de-Hellenized by reassessing the various dogmas that were formulated and approved by a majority of bishops at the first seven Ecumenical Councils.

Under other threads, I have pointed out that there are very sound historical reasons to view Jesus in the same manner as the Ebionites, the first followers of Jesus, without the baggage of all the later Hellenistic dogmas. In Eusebius' Ecclesiastical History , Book III Chapter XXVII, Eusebius wrote the following about the Ebionites:

"For they consider him [Jesus] a plain and common man, and justified only by his advances in virtue, and that he was born of the Virgin Mary, by natural generation."

On Page 24 of "The Life of Jesus," Grove Press (1967)" The Life of Jesus , Marcello Craveri points out that the Annunciation narrative in Luke is a later insertion. "However, as is unanimously conceded by all the commentators, even the Catholics, this passage, like the entire story of the birth of Jesus, is written in a style that hardly harmonizes with Luke's characteristic sentence structure. Plainly, the fragment was added later, and the insertion was made rather unskillfully."

Saul of Tarsus is the one who started the process of transforming the country preacher Jesus of Nazareth into a divine incarnation.

"Almost as soon as Christianity had emerged from Palestine and begun to be preached in Hellenistic regions, the person of Jesus--as we shall see--was presented as a divine incarnation." [Craveri, p. 9]

According to the third Council of Sirmium, in 357,

http://ecole.evansville.edu/arians/7arcon.htm

the following was the position of the Arians with respect to the "divine nature" of Jesus:

<<But since many persons are disturbed by questions concerning what is called in Latin 'Substantia,' but in Greek 'Usia,' that is, to make it understood more exactly, as to 'Coessential,' or what is called, 'Like- in-Essence,' there ought to be no mention of any of these at all, nor exposition of them in the Church, for this reason and for this consideration, that in divine Scripture nothing is written about them, and that they are above men's knowledge and above men's understanding>>

This was the traditional "Catholic doctrine."

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 8:19:33 PM PST
D, YET, Paul and Jesus preached the same message. Peace always in the Most Precious Blood of Christ

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 8:18:23 PM PST
D, Excellent, even though Nancy says for certain there is NO HELL. So much for an opinion! Peace always in the Most Precious Blood of Christ

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 6:31:15 PM PST
Macheath says:
And Daniel's orginal point was that any mention of a virgin birth did not occur until "perhaps even a century or more--after Jesus's death".

Most scholars date the crucifixion around 30AD. Do the math.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 4:54:30 PM PST
Bubba says:
Matthew was written c 80-85 CE
Luke was written c 85-90 CE

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 4:29:11 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 26, 2012 4:31:57 PM PST
Vicki says:
Dear D. Thomas,

This is where investigation and reason comes in. It's not that difficult when approaching ancient writings.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 3:01:25 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 26, 2012 3:03:09 PM PST
Macheath says:
"by this shall all men know that you are my disciples - that you love one another"

Harry, how do you know he said that? Don't you already discount a majority of quotes of Jesus in the New Testament as fabrications? Why is something like "Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me" discounted as not a credible quote yet the one you like is "credible"?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:56:59 PM PST
JJB says:
LOl- hahahahaha well that certainly leaves him out :-)

still want more evidence?

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:41:51 PM PST
Alan says:
"Maybe Paul didn't worship the same Jesus as the Galilean preacher we read about in the gospels."

What an interesting hypothesis. It seems as valid as any other.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:41:24 PM PST
Harry Marks says:
Macheath -
" I would say, in my humble opinion, that a Christian would need to at minimum agree with the statements of the Nicene Creed or Apostles Creed. "

You might be interested in what people said on the question in NT times - "by this shall all men know that you are my disciples - that you love one another" for example.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:29:29 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
Luke is dated by most scholars to the very late first century.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:28:27 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Nov 26, 2012 2:42:07 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
Nor does Paul mention Mary and Joseph, or that Jesus preached in Galilee or was crucified by Pilate. He didn't even say that Jesus was followed by 12 disciples. Paul apparently never heard of any of that stuff; he only said that Jesus was crucified and resurrected. He didn't say where or when or by whom.

Maybe Paul didn't worship the same Jesus as the Galilean preacher we read about in the gospels.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:20:37 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
At least he got the second part right.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:19:03 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
JC wrote: "...Thomas Jefferson, however brilliant (and he WAS brilliant), was a man. Limited, finite, and JUST AS PRONE TO ERROR as any other man who ever lived."

Including the authors of the Bible, of course.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:16:32 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
What's your point? Nancy knows that she has the right to "her fallible opinion," just as you have the right to your many erroneous ones.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:14:15 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
Wrong.

No gospel author claimed to have been a companion of Jesus during his earthly ministry. Their quotes of him were NOT direct. They were based on scripture and hearsay.

Matthew and Luke were lifted from Mark, and Mark derived his narrative and pericopes from the Septuagint. That leaves NO independent sources.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:10:10 PM PST
Macheath says:
I am not criticizing you, or condemning you, you may be a much more compassionate person than I. But the point of the thread here is to discuss, "what is it that makes one a Christian?" What minimum beliefs does someone need to hold before others would classify that individual as a Christian. Do we classify Richard Dawkins as a "Christian" simply if he says he finds many of the statements in the Sermon on the Mount moving? I would say, in my humble opinion, that a Christian would need to at minimum agree with the statements of the Nicene Creed or Apostles Creed.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:06:43 PM PST
D. Thomas says:
Where did Jesus say he was the "supernatural son of God"?

Bill wrote: "...was he a liar or a crazy person?"

You left out two other possibilities:

1. He was misquoted in the gospels. The authors WANTED him to be divine, so they put words in his mouth to that effect.

2. The Jesus of the gospels was a fictitious figure, invented by Paul and embellished upon by the gospel authors.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:05:19 PM PST
Macheath: "To me it really is more of an atheism with an official code of ethics or morals. "
------------------
I would agree with this. When I stopped believing in any supernatural aspects of the bible, I therefore ceased believing in the divinity of Jesus. I could continue as some sort of philosophical follower, but modern Christianity requires more than that. I therefore no longer call myself a Christian.

I imagine that people could consider themselves a Christian by declaring the bible and modern Christianity to be a corrupted version of the truth -- and true Christianity simply IS to follow a moral teacher.

In reply to an earlier post on Nov 26, 2012 2:01:47 PM PST
Harry Marks says:
Macheath -

" I simply believe that once someone no longer believes that Christ still exists in heaven, and that human beings have souls which survive the death of the body, then what they believe has ceased to meet the bare minimum of what you would call "Christianity" "

Well, that is the point in the conversation at which I shrug. I mean, my relationship with God means far more to me than your evaluation of it does. I think you might want to consider whether you are making creed into a "work of the law", but hey, that is far from the most important aspect of your relationship with God.
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This discussion

Discussion in:  Christianity forum
Participants:  28
Total posts:  139
Initial post:  Nov 18, 2012
Latest post:  Nov 30, 2012

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