"after three nights and three days I will rise again"

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Aug 14 2010 6:40 PM

Andrew McKenzie:
I respect and understand Logos wishes on keeping the theolgocial discussion out of the forums but at the same time love hearing all of your insights...

I also love theological discussions and was close to posting more than once. Perhaps, my reminder of forum guidelines was more for me than anyone else.

Thanks for the good summary, Andrew.

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JRS | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Aug 14 2010 7:26 PM

Tim Lord:

Dr. John MacArthur explains in his excellent MacArthur Study  Bible commentary (available from Logos) that such expressions like this "were common in Semitic usage, and seldom were employed in a literal sense to specify precise intervals of time."  See, for example, other expressions such as "forty days and forty nights" (an expression associated in the Bible identically with Jesus, Moses, and Elijah), and which in some cases refers to a period of time longer than one month.  With that in mind, the statement "three days and three nights" is an emphatic way of saying "three days", which, "by Jewish reckoning this would be an apt way of expressing a period of time that includes parts of 3 days," writes Dr. MacArthur.  Thus we do not need to take an extreme literal meaning of these words as long as we see it from the Hebrew context.

Interesting ... why, I could think about that for a thousand years.

How blessed is the one whom Thou dost choose, and bring near to Thee(Psa 65:4a)

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DIsciple II | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Aug 14 2010 8:58 PM

For me in Brisbane, QLD, Australia its about 25 °C , that's about 72-3 ° F i think, on a Sunday afternoon,  which is a bit warmer than it has been lately.  In some Western parts of Queensland (Brisbane is on the east coast) they've been down to below 0 ° C some nights, but we don't quite get down that low in Brisbane, for us below 10 ° C on a chilly winter's night is a possibility though. In August it's windy season so it keeps things cooler, till Spring kicks in next month.

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Michael Childs | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Aug 14 2010 9:13 PM

There are many times in human communication that things are not intended to be taken literally.  Common sense has to be used.  For example, poetic expressions such as "mountains bursting into song" or "trees clapping their hands."

Expressions like "all the people of Jerusalem" went out to hear John the Baptist do not mean every single person in Jerusalem went to hear him.

Figures of speech like "three days and three nights" have to be understood in the Jewish context.

The failure to use common sense and cultural context of expressions is how cults get started.

One can be conservative - even believe scripture is inerrant - and still use some common sense to understand its inerrant message. 

After all, what is the point?  If you convince someone that Jesus was curcified on Thursday rather than Friday, have you done anything to save their soul or help them grow spiritually?  Personally, I think the time would be better spent trying to understand 2 Timothy 2:23.

"In all cases, the Church is to be judged by the Scripture, not the Scripture by the Church," John Wesley

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Aug 14 2010 9:44 PM

Michael Childs:
One can be conservative - even believe scripture is inerrant - and still use some common sense to understand its inerrant message.

You pegged me on this one Michael.

I believe in the inerrant scriptures. God inspired even the figures of speech he included. Wink

Parabolic, analogical , allegorical, idiomatic. figurative and literal; It is all good to me.

Praise God I have a Bible.to read.

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JRS | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 7:53 AM

Vern Poythress wrote a very interesting article entitled, What is Literal Interpretation?, in which he attempts to show that the term itself is confusing because it has different meanings for different people.   He also has an excellent illustration showing how words/phrases/sentences can change meaning depending on context and warns against what he terms "first-thought" and "flat" interpretation. 

In essence, he argues that the term "literal" (or "plain") is ambiguous when used for anything except indivdual words and should be dropped for the more descriptive term, "Grammatical-Historical Interpretation."

For those that are interested here is a link to a copy of that article ...

http://reformedperspectives.org/newfiles/ver_poythress/ver_poythress.Literal.Interpretation.pdf

It's a five minute, thought provoking read ... and well worth it., imho.

How blessed is the one whom Thou dost choose, and bring near to Thee(Psa 65:4a)

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Bohuslav Wojnar | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 9:38 AM

Matthew C Jones:

Michael Childs:
One can be conservative - even believe scripture is inerrant - and still use some common sense to understand its inerrant message.

You pegged me on this one Michael.

I believe in the inerrant scriptures. God inspired even the figures of speech he included. Wink

Parabolic, analogical , allegorical, idiomatic. figurative and literal; It is all good to me.

Praise God I have a Bible.to read.

You said it very well Matthew, and you needed just a few words to do that. Thanks. Yes

 

Bohuslav

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Bohuslav Wojnar | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 9:39 AM

JRS:

For those that are interested here is a link to a copy of that article ...

http://reformedperspectives.org/newfiles/ver_poythress/ver_poythress.Literal.Interpretation.pdf

It's a five minute, thought provoking read ... and well worth it., imho.

 

Thanks for great article. It takes the subject really well. Very helpful. Yes

Bohuslav

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Milford Charles Murray | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 8:13 PM

JRS:

Vern Poythress wrote a very interesting article entitled, What is Literal Interpretation?, in which he attempts to show that the term itself is confusing because it has different meanings for different people     ..........

http://reformedperspectives.org/newfiles/ver_poythress/ver_poythress.Literal.Interpretation.pdf

It's a five minute, thought provoking read ... and well worth it., imho.

Thank you so very much!  An excellent read, indeed!    *smile*    Peace to you  ..   and Joy in the Lord!

Philippians 4:  4 Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice. 5 Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand..........

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Nathan | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 11:18 PM

Jack Caviness:
This is not aimed at any poster in particular. but this thread is drifting rapidly into theological discussions which are outside the forum guidelines.

Oy!, think I am puking up western greek mindset here!  Seriously this is lame..Get enough stars (sheriffs?)  involved and its ok to talk "theological discussions".  I have been spanked before, think its time for a flogging! Zip it!

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Aug 15 2010 11:39 PM

Nathan Barnes:
Get enough stars (sheriffs?)  involved and its ok to talk "theological discussions".

My casual statistical analysis of this thread does not support your star hypothesis. It appears to me that most posts - with or without stars - either offer resources or are off-topic (something you see lots of stars on). Tongue Tied But you are correct in calling the thread as one which at times crossed the line. And as a forum member you are invited to help with the self-policing as you did.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Nathan | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 12:00 AM

MJ. Smith:
My casual statistical analysis of this thread does not support your star hypothesis

Quite frankly if u geta star you should be held to a higher standard.  The "stars" drive much of the discussion.  Can u say post count? Cmon seriously?  If the line is crossed its crossed lets not blur the issue.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 12:38 AM

Nathan Barnes:
Quite frankly if u geta star you should be held to a higher standard.

I agree.

Nathan Barnes:
If the line is crossed its crossed lets not blur the issue.

As I'm sure you have noticed in the forums, I'm not one who views the world in black, white or lines drawn in the sand. If I were, my foster kids wouldn't have been teenagers.Big Smile Or perhaps I should say that if I did it would terrify me; it would mean I'd settled for belief rather than knowledge.

Orthodox Bishop Hilarion Alfeyev: "To be a theologian means to have experience of a personal encounter with God through prayer and worship."

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Jack Caviness | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 3:43 AM

Nathan Barnes:
Quite frankly if u geta star you should be held to a higher standard.

That is what has kept me from joining this discussion. I apologize for offending you.

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 8:55 AM

JRS:

http://reformedperspectives.org/newfiles/ver_poythress/ver_poythress.Literal.Interpretation.pdf

It's a five minute, thought provoking read ... and well worth it., imho.

Thanks JRS, It is an interesting read. Well done, too. But I must point out it is from "Reformed Perspectives Magazine" and any time someone's theological views (Dispensationalism in this case) are defined by someone who is diametrically opposed to those views (Reformed in this case) there will be those "lines drawn in the sand" that MJ refers to and a color-blind world where there is no room for the rest of us who neither fit into one extreme or the other.

There are, after all, more places to stand in the spectrum. One can be a Christian without being a Dispensationalist or Reformed. Currently in Pre-Pub is this resource: Dictionary of Major Biblical Interpreters http://www.logos.com/products/prepub/details/6063 . On page 417 of the print copy we find just such a moderate stance held by Desiderius Erasmus :

"..he was quite critical of the allegorization of Origen and other church fathers and set forth the principle of simplicity in exegesis: "in divine literature the simplest and least forced interpretations are more satisfactory." (Erasmus 1974.6). In his last great work, the Ecclesiastac (1535), Erasmus set forth a middle way between literalism and wild allegorization.
In addition to the literal and allegorical sense, the tropological was especially important to Erasmus. Not all of Scripture can be interpreted allegorically , but passages can be accomodated to the moral sense. In fact the moral sense was so significant to him that he permitted a departure from the literal sense of the passage. "provided it is of value for the "good life" and "agrees with the remaining passages of Scripture." (Erasmus 1703-5, V274D).

Being neither wholly dispensational nor wholly reformed, some may find themselves standing near Erasmus and I suspect there are even other spots to stand that don't resemble any posted in this thread.

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JRS | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 10:07 AM

Matthew C Jones:
Thanks JRS, It is an interesting read. Well done, too. But I must point out it is from "Reformed Perspectives Magazine" and any time someone's theological views (Dispensationalism in this case) are defined by someone who is diametrically opposed to those views (Reformed in this case) there will be those "lines drawn in the sand" that MJ refers to and a color-blind world where there is no room for the rest of us who neither fit into one extreme or the other.

Hmmmm ... 

If I may, Matthew, I think you are reading too much into the comment and the article link that I posted.  That article is actually an extract/chapter from a book that Poythress wrote in the 80's called, Understanding Dispensationalism.  And while Dispensationalism is the backdrop, it was not the motive for the reference or the comment.  Nor am I trying to promote Poythress (never met him and actually have read very little of his work), or Reformed Theology, or to beat down Dispensationalism (although I will admit to a bit of tweak with respect to my earlier post in response to the citation of John MacArthur's Study Bible note - which I think is, in reality, a very good hermeneutical principle).

By the way, the article is posted on several websites - I just happened to select one called "Reformed Perspectives".  There was no subterfuge intended or implied.

The whole point was to show that the term "literal" as thrown around by many [and NOT necessarily exclusively by Dispensationalists], is empty because it has so many different meanings.  Many have suggested that it is often used as a sort of a magical incantation or prophylactic against what is feared to be heresy (be it classical liberalism, or the so-called spiritualizing of the amil/postmil crowd, or whomever or whatever).  I just happen to think that Poythress did an outstanding job showing that the term "literal" can have any one of several meanings when applied to a phrase or a sentence or an extended passage and, as a result, really should be expunged from from the hermeneutic discussion because of it's ambiguity.  Hence, the title, What IS Literal Interpretation? [emph mine]  If Walvoord or Ryrie had authored the article and I had found a link to it at the BibSac website, I would have been just as happy to cite it.

My apologies if I was inadvertently misleading you or anyone else.

 

How blessed is the one whom Thou dost choose, and bring near to Thee(Psa 65:4a)

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Aug 16 2010 10:30 AM

JRS:
Nor am I trying to promote Poythress (never met him and actually have read very little of his work), or Reformed Theology, or to beat down Dispensationalism

Fair enough. I'm not attacking or promoting Dispensationalism or Reformed theology either. I guess my response proves your point. I was reading it literally. Huh?

I must admit I have not read all of Erasmus either. My post quoted him from the 16th century and his writings are on many web sites too. Stick out tongue Again, literally. Cool

In a post last year we came to a concensus the term "Evangelical" had lost any useful meaning today because it means so many different things to different people. Could it be the word "literal" is falling upon the same sword?      "It depends on what the meaning of the word 'is' is." –Bill Clinton, Devil

Now that is being literal! Geeked

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Paul Davey | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 17 2010 8:02 AM

Jesus foretold his death in both ways, so they must be equivalent:

 

Matthew 16:21 (ESV)

Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection

21 From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.

Matthew 12:40 (ESV)

40 For just as Jonah was three days and three nights in the belly of the great fish, so will the Son of Man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth.

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Matthew C Jones | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 17 2010 11:42 AM

EDIT: Post deleted after reading Romans 16:17

This is not a commentary on other posters in the thread.

fyi: I re-examined my purpose in posting and came up wanting.

Thanks for the edit feature!

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Bill Coley | Forum Activity | Replied: Tue, Aug 17 2010 12:26 PM

Matthew C Jones:

EDIT: Post deleted after reading Romans 16:17

This is not a commentary on other posters in the thread.

fyi: I re-examined my purpose in posting and came up wanting.

Thanks for the edit feature!

 

Matthew,

I had just finished reading your post via e-mail when I visited the forum thread to discover that you had deleted it. I honor your decision. Thanks for a powerful example of self-accountability.

Blessings,

Bill Coley

 

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