Thoughts on apologetics and theological discussions

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Jerome Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 2:44 PM | Locked

I have had an interest in apologetics for many years. I have placed notes on the subject in my book, The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, at 2 Peter 1:16 and elsewhere throughout the volume, which most of you know is a Logos resource.

I have a printed book that is not in Logos or anywhere else that I know of that has been a wonderful resource. It is by Irwin H. Linton, titled A Lawyer Examines the Bible, published by Baker Book House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, reprinted in 1969 or 1970, a work of 318 pages.

This book has been valuable to me because Mr. Linton introduces many of the classic works on Christian Evidences. Neither his book nor the excellent resources he references are available in Logos Bible Software. I wish they were!

A few of the titles he refers to are:

The Testimony of the Evangelists by Simon Greenleaf

Evidences of Christianity by Chas. P. McIlvaine

Cause and Cure of Infidelity by David Nelson

The Conversion of St. Paul by George Lyttleton

The Resurrection of Christ by Gilbert West

Evidences of the Christian Religion by Archibald Alexander (This title is in Logos)

Evidences of Christianity by Mark Hopkins

Horae Paulinae by William Paley (I have summarized this whole book in the New Treasury in notes linked  to Acts 12:12)

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 2:47 PM | Locked

DIsciple II:

DMB:

David Wanat:
abusus non tollit usum 

For those wanting or even needing excellent debating tools:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Latin_phrases_(A) 

Not reflecting on Mr Wanat, but randomly selecting one of these, keeping a poker-face, and adding nothing else in the phrase, is extremely effective. It places in doubt exactly who is missing a screw.

abyssus abyssum invocat

Psa 42:7

ok ... back to apo-logetics.

People think it makes them look superior in their argument. But to me it's a way of completing ignoring the scripture that is a contrario to what you are claiming is the case, I prefer modern phrase though to describe this move, "burying your head in the sand". 

Or you could google it and learn the principle. Abusus non tollit usum is also a useful principle to apply when people bring up "Whataboutism" against Christians who backslide as a reason to reject Christianity.

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 3:37 PM | Locked

Greg Dement:
I have found the banter fruitful, at least for me. Unless I am reading their tones incorrectly the discussion has been respectful with some occasional light-hearted sarcasm. There are some points of view I don’t agree with but they have made me look with different eyes. It makes me realize that we can take something purely good and turn it into something that is not if we are not careful. I like to be tested/challenged to make sure I have the proper guardrails in place. 

Nice attitude.

And for the records, if my use of a particular term here (lacking a more scientific one) is a problem and considered a lack of love, I wonder why is ok for authors to use it in resources available in L9, and are not considered problematic?

See one cannot be apologetic and at the same time appear to have double standards.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 4:14 PM | Locked

Hamilton Ramos:
I wonder why is ok for authors to use it in resources available in L9, and are not considered problematic?
And who said their use was not problematic? The same issue occurs where problematic language of early centuries is used in a contemporary setting The forums had the example of "Popish" IIRC. People addressing a small, insulated group get by using language that is not acceptable in a broader context. One also can get by using a term when using it as an example of what is not acceptable. One can also get by using a term when you have provided a very specific definition and explanation of why you are using the term in a non-offensive way with acknowledgement that the general definition is offensive. 

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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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 5:08 PM | Locked

MJ. Smith:
who said their use was not problematic? The same issue occurs where problematic language of early centuries is used in a contemporary setting The forums had the example of "Popish" IIRC. People addressing a small, insulated group get by using language that is not acceptable in a broader context. One also can get by using a term when using it as an example of what is not acceptable. One can also get by using a term when you have provided a very specific definition and explanation of why you are using the term in a non-offensive way with acknowledgement that the general definition is offensive. 

So Churchianity is a wrong term describing a very real situation that is not in accordance with the Bible revelation and neither with the nature and character of God.

In your opinion what would be the correct term to refer to such?

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 5:37 PM | Locked

Your question is mal-formed. In the context of the forums

Hamilton Ramos:
that is not in accordance with the Bible revelation and neither with the nature and character of God.
does not enter into the equation of my responses nor should it.

Ignoring that, Merriam- Webster defines churchianity as: "a usually excessive or narrowly sectarian attachment to the practices and interests of a particular church" first used in 1837.

Wiktionary defines it as: "(derogatory) Any practices of Christianity that place a larger emphasis on the habits of church life or the institutional traditions of the church than on theology and spiritual teachings of Jesus; the quality of being too church-focused."

Oxford Lexico provides "Devotion or adherence to the rituals and doctrine of the Christian church rather than to the principles and ethics of Christianity. Formerly also: †adherence to or support for the Anglican Church (obsolete)." The obsolete meaning illustrating the derogatory intent of the term and hence, it's inappropriateness in the forums.

Depending upon the circumstances I might use ecclesiolatry, cult-like emphasis, unbalanced understanding, attachment to ecclesial externals, ... what I would use depends on the audience, the context, and whether I am referring to a person, a group, or an institution.

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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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 5:57 PM | Locked

MJ. Smith:
ecclesiolatry
Sounds like a good term, but seems to include more serious transgression. From what I have read so far in the first book in my search depicted in previous post, it seems to deal with a shallow discipleship, instead of particular denominations: :

"Cultural “churchianity,” built on personal preferences, narcissistic consumerism, rugged individualism, and safe status quo, absolutely cannot mix with biblical Christianity. Biblical Christianity involves cross bearing, self-denial, and costly sacrificial love. A “churchian,” not to be mistaken for a Christian, swims in the shallows. A churchian attends church gatherings, serves others, and seems moral. He is a good person. He practices spiritual disciplines but usually only when he wants something from God. He tries to be generous. He looks a lot like a true disciple. However, he is the center of his religion. He keeps Christ at arm’s length. He follows what he perceives to be God’s will as long as it aligns with his conception of “the good life.” As soon as Christ makes demands, as he often does, problems arise. The churchian ignores any call to deny self and pick up the cross. The cross and cost do not figure into his religion of comfort and convenience."

Luchetti, L. (2015). True depth: moving beyond cultural christianity. Indianapolis, IN: Wesleyan Publishing House.

So its origin and use are related to the context of Protestant Churches, so I do not see why is interpreted as attack on other traditions. There are even pictures of showing that the concept is used for the awareness and inspiration to continuously improve in some protestant denominations:

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 6:34 PM | Locked

Hamilton Ramos:

MJ. Smith:
ecclesiolatry
Sounds like a good term, but seems to include more serious transgression. From what I have read so far in the first book in my search depicted in previous post, it seems to deal with a shallow discipleship, instead of particular denominations: :

"Cultural “churchianity,” built on personal preferences, narcissistic consumerism, rugged individualism, and safe status quo, absolutely cannot mix with biblical Christianity. Biblical Christianity involves cross bearing, self-denial, and costly sacrificial love. A “churchian,” not to be mistaken for a Christian, swims in the shallows. A churchian attends church gatherings, serves others, and seems moral. He is a good person. He practices spiritual disciplines but usually only when he wants something from God. He tries to be generous. He looks a lot like a true disciple. However, he is the center of his religion. He keeps Christ at arm’s length. He follows what he perceives to be God’s will as long as it aligns with his conception of “the good life.” As soon as Christ makes demands, as he often does, problems arise. The churchian ignores any call to deny self and pick up the cross. The cross and cost do not figure into his religion of comfort and convenience."

Luchetti, L. (2015). True depth: moving beyond cultural christianity. Indianapolis, IN: Wesleyan Publishing House.

So its origin and use are related to the context of Protestant Churches, so I do not see why is interpreted as attack on other traditions. There are even pictures of showing that the concept is used for the awareness and inspiration to continuously improve in some protestant denominations:

I think the problem with your graphic is, it’s too easy to label people according to one’s approval or disapproval without seeing if it fits.

It’s like the old adage on bias: “I am firm, you are stubborn, they are pigheaded.”

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Hamilton Ramos | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 7:54 PM | Locked

David Wanat:
I am firm, you are stubborn, they are pigheaded.

LOL, good one.

Why I go through all this fuss?

Ok, I will have to explain my view (which is multi-tradition by the way).

There is revealed truth, and hopefully that revealed truth will help us get to true religion, and then to true denomination.

The Bible origin narrative, is way better in terms of rationality and plausibility than the origin narrative of other worldviews.

So far so good.

Our human condition is messed up, because we wanted out of continuous communion with God, when He as creator had designed our life project to be compromised of constant communion with Him for help and guidance, and harmonious relation with Creation (HIs creation by the way), it was designed to be like that forever.

Our break away from such project, got us in this mess we have now as our shared reality, that clearly shows that rebellion against God and His plans do not work.

So how to get out of the mess? Well God is good and His h:hesed is forever.  We cannot get out, God mercifully has taken initiative to help us get out:

Come Jesus Christ. Our Lord and Savior. He incarnated to come show us the way to the Father, also disclosed that He is the origin, and that He is the one that we have to imitate in thankfulness for His atoning work.

So God is willing to receive us back with open arms, but by the way He has selected: only through Jesus Christ can we get to the Father.

Now Jesus mission was two fold: die for us (paying the price of our transgression), but also to restore the koinonia with God, baptizing us with the Holy Spirit.

What is going to be our destiny? Jesus showed us: resurrection and koinonia restored with the Father. No other worldview has such evidence. Yes evidence, back in Roman times the secret network of snitchers was worse than Gestapo. So they never found Jesus body, that if any foul play was responsible for it disapparition, the Romans would have found out real quick.

But what really ticked the Romans that indeed Jesus was alive again, was the miracles that continue happening due to Him being the Miracle Worker, that allowed such to happen for the glory of God.

500 witnesses that He resurrected would in modern times be taken as good evidence too.

Now, why all of this is important to apologetics, not only because is light years away from other worldview narratives, but it also shows us the standard to check if things are aligned with God's plan for His glory:

Jesus incarnated, came as a missionarie to rescue us, He is the good shepherd, to show us the way out of the hole... If we are to be Christlike, we should:

Be likewise, or be involved in the Body of Christ that does the same.

Outreach discipleship against church membership, you want to know who is who, check their fruits, what kind of fruit does Christ give? missional, imbued with power, servers of God.

When you see too much ego, too much structuralism, too many committees and budgets (which are important but not principal), statements like "the church is the hope of the world" which is false, as the only hope for the world is Jesus Christ, and see little anointing, little gifts of the Spirit to continue with the mission of God, etc. then one must understand that something is not right.

We are to receive power from above before being a witness, and such power does not make a human a miracle worker, but a living stone, part of the New Temple of God (Christ0), where the Spirit of the Lord can operate making Himself the miracles, big difference.

Apologetics, yes, but according to the nature and character of God and the example of Christ: Clarity, order, coherence, power (God's), our Father manifesting through His Spirit to set aright what has gone wrong in this fallen context.

Very particular opinion of mine with the interest of having it serve as basis for further research, reflection and constructive comment if needed.

It's God's world, about His creatures, and His plan to save them, we are but fit help (bride of Christ) in the project, no starship at all, but supporting role.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, May 8 2021 8:44 PM | Locked

Hamilton, I have no interest in being drawn into a theological "discussion" with you nor do I wish to be a temptation for breaking forum guidelines on theological discussions.

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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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 3:01 AM | Locked

This thread needs a link to Belief Map provides a format that would be useful with in Logos as in interactive type tool - Faithlife Forums which is a link to BeliefMap.org | The Christian Apologetics Debate Simulator which is an application of Rationale - online argument mapping (rationaleonline.com) which is an example of the argument mapping I have long promoted (since 2011 at least ... although I've let up recently for reasons left best unstated). 

While I would love to find a partner to explore apologetics within the dialogue logic model (How to Play Dialogues. an Introduction to Dialogical Logic (Dialogues and Games of Logic) by Juan Redmond (2011-08-05): AmazonSmile: Books and Dialogues as a Dynamic Framework for Logic (Dialogues and Games of Logic): Rueckert, Helge: 9781848900479: AmazonSmile: Books) I fear my actual experience runs as follows:

Other person: makes statement that makes it clear we lack a common definition of "canon"

Back and forth discussion until we agree on the definition of "canon" for purposes of our discussion

Other person: literally on the next message, uses a different definition of "canon"

Me: I call him on it.

Other person: changes the topic to pedobaptism

Me: I point out we were discussing the canon

Other person: changes the topic to grace ... some subdivision of which I was unfamiliar -- hey, systematic theology is not my thing.

Me: I say I'll have to do some research and get back to him ... it's been 5 years and neither of us "got back to the other" ... I think he thinks he won as I had no comeback; I think I quit wasting my time on a closed mind.

And my original intent was simply to help the person understand the stance of the Logos resource The First Bible of the Church: A Plea for the Septuagint | Logos Bible Software

My point: no tool will do more than organize canned arguments .. although that, in itself, can be useful. Unfortunately, some use canned arguments as an excuse to not listen which is the first skill needed in apologetics. [my epistemology not theology]

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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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 4:12 AM | Locked

MJ. Smith:
Unfortunately, some use canned arguments as an excuse to not listen which is the first skill needed in apologetics.

LOL...that literally sounds like you're saying "use [of] canned arguments as an excuse to not listen" is the first skill needed in apologetics. 😄 We might finally be in agreement. 😏

Greg Dement:

A follow up question for David Paul. Regarding your comment: 

“Explaining YHWH and His purposes and intentions is perfectly fine; it's even obligatory. Defending YHWH is abhorrent to Him. Lk. 21:14-15 NASB95 seems to be a pretty clear injunction against prepared defenses.”

I genuinely want to know your thought process to where you deduce that “defending YHWH is abhorrent to him”?

This is long, so if you are one who doesn't want to, don't read it.

Well, there is just the common sense of the matter: YHWH is simply impervious to attack. Blasphemy, for instance, harms the practitioner, not the object (':Elohhiym). His destructive response is already ordained and it is decidedly a pro-active judgment, not a defense. So, plain and simple, He, 'Eil Shadhdaay, needs no defending. YHWH is never on His back foot. Even suggesting He does/is implies a chink in His absolute sovereignty. It is a sideways insult. That irks Him exceedingly and is a sort of blasphemy all by itself that teeters on being idolatry.

That said, my comments are based on the general narrative in the Book of Job. 'Iyyohbh is being hectored by "friends" who are following "standard party doctrine" (some might even say Christian dogma) in their descriptions of how and why ':Elohhiym does what He does. They are quite familiar with YHWH and most of what they say is true enough. Nevertheless, they fall short in (at least) a couple of respects. One is that their "truths" about YHWH are nevertheless not the whole truth. They have a very common moralistic perception of ':Elohhiym, (which aligns with most historical Christian perspectives of God), but their comprehension and understanding of His driving prophetic purposes is essentially zero. They are ignorant of YHWH's bet with hassaattaan or that their dependable "God-is-all-good-all-the-time" Deity has allowed His "blameless and upright" servant ('Iyyohbh) to suffer undeservedly in order to prove a point and win an argument with His enemy--an argument YHWH instigated (Job 1:8) even though He claims that hassaattaan provoked Him (Job 2:3). 'Iyyohbh, aware of his own righteousness and his New Covenant over-and-above comportment with YHWH's will (Job 31:1; Mt. 5:27-28), calls YHWH to account for His mistreatment of him. YHWH isn't bothered by this aspect of his reaction, as He fully recognizes that 'Iyyohbh didn't deserve the treatment YHWH subjected him to through the proxy of His great enemy. In fact, YHWH to some degree appreciates 'Iyyohbh's pluck and persistence, and most of all, the fact that he is not as annoyingly obsequious as the "friends" are, who (like most Christians do) insist that YHWH would NEVER behave in the way He has, in fact, just behaved. Let's be clear...YHWH killed blameless 'Iyyohbh's ten kids to win a bet...with His enemy. That is NOT a trait you will find in Christian lists of YHWH's character...even though it IS His character. He IS that kind of ':Elohhiym.

Although it is 'Iyyohbh who castigates YHWH's treatment of him, and it is his specious friends who DEFEND YHWH's character, YHWH clearly states (Job 42:8) that 'Iyyohbh spoke what is right of Him and that the friends spoke n'bhaalaah (folly). YHWH DID mistreat 'Iyyohbh (that is, troubled him not according to his behavior), even though the friends said that ':Elohah would never afflict the innocent or cause them to perish (Job 4:7), something I have heard many Christians parrot. That, of course, is sheer nonsense. Ever heard of Yeishuua`...His sinless Son? The scourging? The cross? And I'm barely touching the surface of examples. Some (or perhaps most) failures to comprehend YHWH's purposes come from failing to recognize that YHWH's intentions are fundamentally prophetic, and NOT historical or tied to either moralizing or then-contemporary scenarios.

To be clear, 'Iyyohbh did venture into ill-considered speech when he went from defending himself and declaring his righteousness (both appropriate behaviors because he was correct on those points) veering eventually into suggesting that YHWH was Himself wrong or even unrighteous for failing to treat 'Iyyohbh according to His blamelessness. At this impugning of His character, did YHWH offer a defense of Himself? Or ever bother to address or answer any of 'Iyyohbh's charges?? Decidedly...NO. Rather He simply drew attention to His role as Master of Creation and 'Eil Shadhdaay. He could have simply replied with a varation of Psa. 115:3 NASB, but He rather drew it out with numerous examples of His absolute sovereignty. He did what He did to 'Iyyohbh because He wanted to. Did He have reasons? Sure, but He absolutely didn't need any...and none were offered as explanation. Additionally, but not primarily, 'Iyyohbh also learned from his eye-opening experience. The lesson YHWH taught was...I AM GOD and you are not. That effectively was His only remark. It is almost too much to declare it a justification, primarily since most people perceive that word in terms of human frailty. But YHWH was inevitably just, even in His mistreatment of 'Iyyohbh, because His will--whatever that might be--is the only yardstick of justice; it literally defines justice. MORALITY, on the contrary, does not define "justice". There was nothing moral about killing a man's 10 children to win a bet with a depraved enemy. The Bible doesn't teach morality. It teaches obedience to an Almighty Creator. The "miserable comforters" preached a "moral" God, and nearly paid for their temerity with their lives. YHWH is a prophetically instigated 'Eil, and that motivation is a product of His will. Yes, just to be clear, He always knew where He was going and that He would eventually restore 'Iyyohbh and bless him...but He didn't HAVE to. It's simply His will to bless His obedient children "at their end" of this life, and He pictured that in 'Iyyohbh's object lesson of a life. Between now and our ends, however, pretty much anything is on the table, and our obedience is expected regardless, come what may. 'Iyyohbh knew that (Job 2:10) up to a point.

Though his erring friends perceived "fairness" in YHWH, the fact is YHWH often does things that are not strictly fair from a human perspective. They ascribed "fairness" to ':Elohhiym, but they couldn't acknowledge His unfairness, even to the point that they condemned 'Iyyohbh for suggesting he wasn't treated fairly. Here's the crux (pun intended): YHWH KNEW HE WASN'T TREATING 'IYYOHBH FAIRLY (just as it wasn't fair to require Yeishuua`s crucifixion), but His prophetic purposes ineluctably trumped human notions of fairness. It was more important to YHWH to do what He did than it was to treat His "well-deserving" servant "well" for a season. That fact was not something the "comforters" comprehended, nor were they willing to accept it without Providential prompting. As a result, YHWH in essence considered the friends to be guilty of idolatry, because their idea of ':Elohhiym was incomplete and thus inevitably erroneous, resulting in their active, articulate, and well-meaning DEFENSE of Him being rendered both false and odious to Him. They thought of Him as most believing humans do; they thought it was honoring of Him to speak only "well" of Him. The reality is that YHWH does things that are awful at times. People don't want an awful God; they want an awesome God...effectively declaring that He is only worthy of "some awe" rather than our "full awe". The result is that many people simply choose to deny the "hard" or "unpleasant" aspects of YHWH. It is idolatry to do so. Not surprisingly, I suspect most people aren't eager nor excited to defend an unpleasant God. Most Christians think of YHWH as the three friends did, as moral, but YHWH can do whatever He wants, including things that if done by a human would make that person a monster, and that "whatever" is just, though the innocent may suffer. Just like Yeishuua`, 'Iyyohbh learned from his suffering, in spite of the fact that it was undeserved. He saw YHWH more clearly because of His mistreatment. He had always been one who feared ':Elohhiym (Job 1:1), but the reasons for having that fear mushroomed as a result of his treatment by ':Elohhiym, and were made crystal clear in his sight. Of course, the fear of YHWH, like apologetic defensiveness, is for the most part a drastically misunderstood notion, steeped in "defending His character" and "requiring His 'pleasantness'", mistakes which also bear their own consequences.

This is my point about apologetically defending YHWH: for many reasons, it will not go well. In fact, YHWH may intentionally see to it that it doesn't go well. If He doesn't defend Himself, what makes anyone else think He would want them to do it for Him? Also, proper declarations of actuality and truth regarding YHWH and His purposes are not inevitably nor inherently "defenses", though some apparently think they are. Additionally, if anyone, under the influence of "God-is-all-good-all-the-time", has the intrepid effrontery to declare the death of 'Iyyohbh's ten children "good", be assured that YHWH is horrified and enraged with you. You have declared evil good. YHWH creates (Gen. 1's baaraa') evil (Isa. 45:7 KJV), so He is, as a result of Isa. 5:20, wrathful toward those who jubilantly declare that He is all-good-all-the-time. He simply IS NOT. Yes, it's true that all things work together for good to those who love ':Elohhiym, but a significant part of what YHWH works His purposes through is evil...specifically, evil that He performs, either directly or through proxies. If your "apology" of YHWH doesn't include that little tidbit, you are effectively engaging in idolatry in His sight. You are describing a god that is not according to His revelation of Himself. That can only end badly, apologize though you may.

If you find any of what I'm saying "unbelievable", know also that everything just relayed is a significant facet of YHWH's Unbelievable Work...it's prophesied to be unbelievable, though it is true. Also, if anything I've said here sparks an "apologetic" instinct to jump in and defend YHWH's character because you feel that what has been relayed here shows ':Elohhiym in an ugly light and you can't bear that, know you have chosen to plant your flag in the same hole that the three fools staked. They barely escaped with their lives.

Recall (now and forever) these lines, spoken by 'Iyyohbh, but endorsed by YHWH Himself: Job 13:7-8. YHWH ultimately is asking, "Will you speak what is unjust for Him (i.e. for the sake of His supposed honor)?" Will you, where He is concerned, see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil...even in the midst of Him CREATING evil? "Will you speak what is deceitful and show partiality for Him?"

Want to see an example of what I'm describing here?

I created this pic to bolster a point with someone I was engaged with on FB about five years ago. 

Just a matter of days or weeks later, another similar engagement occurred. A statement I made was forcefully challenged, so I marshalled this pic again. Notice the response of the person who decided to defend YHWH's character against my supposed attack. 

Let me state the patently obvious. I literally cut and pasted (from Logos) scripture of YHWH declaring a revelation about Himself, and the person's response was..."so according to you". NO...according to YHWH. HE SAID IT...I merely posted it, repeated it, and exegeted it. Poor Grover used my minimal interaction with the Scripture placed before him to "speak what was unjust and deceitful" for his god's sake, and in the process He openly declared that the God of Isa. 45:7 was not his god. He literally showed so much partiality FOR ':Elohhiym that he entirely REJECTED His explicit revelation of Himself in Scripture. HIS god was "better" than the ':Elohhiym revealed in Isaiah.

Thus it goes for those who defend, who apologize for, the 'Eil of the Bible. Look at Job 13:8-9 again...do you think his contending for "his" god will "go well for" poor Grover? Will it "be well" when YHWH examines poor Grover? Do you think he will be successful in his attempt to deceive YHWH and convince Him that He doesn't know Himself--that, in fact, He really doesn't create evil and can "only do that which is good"? In Grover's mind, he was DEFENDING "his" god, which he assumed to be The God, but his "defense" of ':Elohhiym forced him to reject YHWH. As Job 13:12 prophesies, Grover's defenses are "defenses of clay". This means (at least) two things. One, his apologia is made of clay, and like any of the Potter's vessels that He finds unsatisfactory, it will be shattered. But because humans are likewise clay vessels, the verse is declaring that Gordon's defenses are human defenses, that is, fallible arguments based on emotion and highly immature "thinking" (aka assuming) rather than YHWH's own plain, explicit revelation.

So that's basically it. Hope that is sufficient.

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scooter | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 6:41 AM | Locked

David, thank you for your extensive comments.  I read them once, but will read them a few more times.  God bless!!

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Greg Dement | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 7:02 AM | Locked

David, that is a long answer that I read briefly. I appreciate you taking the time to do it. A response to the entirety of your post will require a deeper read from me, if I end up choosing to respond further. But if I do it will be in starting another post so as not to detract more from this thread. At first glance while in my mind there are some truths in your post, generally I am, respectfully, probably not going to track with you. For now relatively briefly I will respond in part. I use no Greek or Hebrew because I know no Greek or Hebrew.
Sorry, I don’t know how to paste a quote from a previous post so that it is blue but the entirety of my question is below. I saw you used Job in another post. The context of my question was how you used Lk 21:14-15 to draw the comment you attributed to it.

********

Your comment:

“Explaining YHWH and His purposes and intentions is perfectly fine; it's even obligatory. Defending YHWH is abhorrent to Him. Lk. 21:14-15 NASB95 seems to be a pretty clear injunction against prepared defenses.”

My question:

I genuinely want to know your thought process to where you deduce that “defending YHWH is abhorrent to him”?  Is it possible to see that this was when Jesus was warning them of persecution and destruction to come and giving them comfort about not having to worry about how to defend themselves if they are arrested? Does it give you any different perspecitve if you parallel with “specific“ context in Mark 13:11?

11 “When they arrest you and hand you over, do not worry beforehand about what you are to say, but say whatever is given you in that hour; for it is not you who speak, but it is the Holy Spirit. (Mk 13:11)

**************

There is some truth in some of your perspective and I think Spurgeon agreed to some of your thought process: “The Gospel is like a caged lion. It does not need to be defended. It just needs to be let out of its cage.” Not needing does not necessarily equal abhorrent or even wrong. Although defense is a relatively simple word, how it is defined and used in the context of much of the discussion can vary greatly.  Peripherally defense of my belief/faith, defense of the historicity of scripture, defense for creation using science, philosoph, etc could be deemed as defending God. Perhaps one could say you are defending God from people who defend him. We can agree God does not “need” our defense. If we were not to do anything simply on the basis that God doesn’t need it...what is left. As you know often what we do is for our need or the need of others. 
So many initial thoughts I would like to respond with but i both fairness and need, I should read more deeply your thoughts on Job before I comment further….on another thread. Again thanks for taking time to respond.

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 7:13 AM | Locked

Hamilton Ramos:

David Wanat:
I am firm, you are stubborn, they are pigheaded.

LOL, good one.

I can’t help but think you’re missing my point. One can come up with all sorts of categories about what a church is supposed to be. But it’s easy to look at a different denomination under the assumption that they must be wrong and interpret their differences by giving it a negative motive. Lists like this can be useful if it’s a case of “this is what we need to become“ but dangerous if it is used in the sense of “I thank You Lord that I am not like that tax collector…”

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1Cor10:31 | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 7:55 AM | Locked

I see this discussion distinctly being theological, and only peripherally related to Logos resources. Why are the moderators allowing it to flourish? I find inconsistency in application of Forum guidelines to be hard to digest. I don't like people playing favorites.

Posts 239
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 9:56 AM | Locked

1Cor10:31:

I see this discussion distinctly being theological, and only peripherally related to Logos resources. Why are the moderators allowing it to flourish? I find inconsistency in application of Forum guidelines to be hard to digest. I don't like people playing favorites.

Your angst is probably long-standing ... hard-enforcement vs selective-enforcement. The thread question invited a slippery slope, if only because the software is moving in the same direction.  Foe example, a 'canon' question sounds straight-forward, but for many, it's a theological issue (the Work of the Diety).

Personally, Mr Paul's wandering trail into theology merits discussion, if only because a segment og Logosia sees such as secular definitions, while another (smaller) sees the issue similar to 2nd-Temple, as as a horror-story (thoroughly insulting to the Diety). Logos development tends solidly to the former, and the issue merits a bit of 'why'.

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Mike Binks | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 9:57 AM | Locked

1Cor10:31:

I see this discussion distinctly being theological, and only peripherally related to Logos resources. Why are the moderators allowing it to flourish? I find inconsistency in application of Forum guidelines to be hard to digest. I don't like people playing favorites.

Generally, the moderators take a very light touch and are loath to close down threads by exercising authority.

As, almost by definition, these forums are populated by folk of 'good will' it is usually enough for an MVP to mention that the thread is slipping past the guidelines for 'folk of good will' to reign in and exercise some self-discipline.

Given that we should all be applying the adage 'Everything I read in these forums I will struggle to put the best possible interpretation on and credit the writer with kindness and humour.' It is disappointing that you have had to point out that this thread is well off-topic.

I shall pray that this is the final post in the thread and that nobody is so insecure that they cannot leave it without themselves having the last word.

We will see ;-)

tootle pip

Mike

How to get logs and post them. (now tagging post-apocalyptic fiction as current affairs)

Posts 239
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 9:58 AM | Locked

1Cor10:31:

I see this discussion distinctly being theological, and only peripherally related to Logos resources. Why are the moderators allowing it to flourish? I find inconsistency in application of Forum guidelines to be hard to digest. I don't like people playing favorites.

Your angst is probably long-standing on the forum ... hard-enforcement vs selective-enforcement. The thread question invited a slippery slope, if only because the software is moving in the same direction.  For example, a 'canon' question sounds straight-forward, but for many, it's a theological issue (the Work of the Diety).

Personally, Mr Paul's wandering trail into theology merits discussion, if only because a segment of Logosia sees such as secular definitions, while another (smaller) sees the issue similar to 2nd-Temple, as a horror-story (thoroughly insulting to the Diety). Logos development tends solidly to the former, and the issue merits a bit of 'why'.

Posts 1185
David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, May 9 2021 11:08 AM | Locked

Mike Binks:

I shall pray that this is the final post in the thread and that nobody is so insecure that they cannot leave it without themselves having the last word.

Everybody involved on the thread 😉

(Sorry, couldn't resist)

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