Congratulations FL...but you shouldn't win.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Posted: Sat, Apr 10 2021 3:30 AM

Just noticed the blog article about the Lexham book that has become a finalist for a Christian Book Award. I read the excerpt and was floored by this statement.

Grotesque Mischaracterization
Say what? Let's look at Lk. 11:42. Do you see Yeishuua` saying anything about the Pharisees following the letter of the law? You know why not? BECAUSE THEY WEREN'T!!! If they had been following Tohraah, He wouldn't have had any problem with their actions, period. Plain and simple, this a grotesque mischaracterization of what Yeishuua` was indicating in this confrontation. You know why? BECAUSE "justice and the love of God" ARE PART OF TOHRAAH! Yeishuua` was castigating and condemning the Pharisees for NOT keeping the law...not "for" following the law. This abominable false dichotomy exemplifies the kind of defiled and putrid bath beads Christianity has been leisurely soaking in for ages. It is a grotesque lie with dire consequences.

Am I overexaggerating? Am I wrong? Well, one only need to at the parallel scripture in Mt. 23:23 to see that this characterization of Lk. 11:42 is utterly miscast. See it? Yeishuua` explicitly says that justice and mercy ARE PROVISIONS OF THE LAW!! This award candidate's description is unspeakable malarkey. However, given the appetite that exists for this kind of distortion, I would say the book has an excellent chance of winning.

Take just a moment to contemplate the multiple dozens of people who have encountered this and were not just fully content to let it pass, but considered this laudable and worthy of commendation!

What next, Lexham? Going to start peddling square circles?

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DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Apr 10 2021 6:44 AM

Well, first, Lexham didn't win. The professor did. 

But I agree ... it's Christian scholarship, assigning the present to the past. Plus her students (Biola) can't really be that uninformed about Paul's new converts. Surely.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sat, Apr 10 2021 3:00 PM

David Paul:
Going to start peddling square circles?

I thought they've done so for a very long time, given the variety of resources they carry, they can't all be right ... and some are neither factual or logical. One Amazon gave me for review and I could only make it through the first 23 pages it was so bad. The nice thing about Logos is that the people who enjoyed the book can still buy it and I can ignore it's existence.

I do find it interesting that the resource you mention is up for a Christian Book Award ... tells me something about their standards. 

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xnman | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 5:09 AM

I'm a thinking... this would make for a great discussion! Oh yeah! 

xn = Christan  man=man

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 5:14 AM

xnman:

I'm a thinking... this would make for a great discussion! Oh yeah! 

I’m thinking why has this post been allowed? It goes against forum rules, but hey, I guess some get a break others don’t. Why am I not surprised 😂😂😂

DAL

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 6:28 AM

DAL:

xnman:

I'm a thinking... this would make for a great discussion! Oh yeah! 

I’m thinking why has this post been allowed? It goes against forum rules

DAL makes a good point.

However, the forums have long hosted Book Reviews of resources sold by Faithlife, so one could argue that David Paul has given a very passionate and brief negative book review of the work in question.

Posts 349
DMB | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 6:47 AM

DAL:
Why am I not surprised

Because you're not surprised. He's discussing a 'book'. Cover, TOC, stuff like that. And since Logos caters to the proposed religious, the 'books' are very discuss-able. Like a current tome I'm hiccupping over, where the author has gone off the edge assigning late aramaic to Daniel. Only an idiot could do something so facile (I just made that up). Smiling.

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David Carter | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 6:53 AM

SineNomine:

DAL makes a good point.

However, the forums have long hosted Book Reviews of resources sold by Faithlife, so one could argue that David Paul has given a very passionate and brief negative book review of the work in question.

One could also argue that it's just a diatribe about a blog post. I don't believe he has actually read the book

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SineNomine | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 6:58 AM

David Carter:
One could also argue that it's just a diatribe about a blog post.

In that case, it would belong in the Logos Blog forum.

David Carter:
I don't believe he has actually read the book

In which case he would be like many people who post book reviews on Amazon and other places that collect book reviews.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 7:25 AM

Indeed, I am responding to a blog post that includes an extended excerpt that FL posted on its website. Obviously, FL introduced this subject matter into its public environment. I'm addressing blatant inaccuracy introduced by FL. If this title wasn't published BY FL, I doubt I would have brought it up, since bad Bible study abounds, as MJ said, and I don't usually dispute it. Because this is a BIBLE software/publishing company, pretty much everything they do flirts with issues of doctrine and belief, but I'm addressing the issue primarily (though not solely) from FL's role as editor & publisher. This is a case of not only ignoring evidence and fabricating "facts", but permitting these errors to proceed unaddressed...only to have them (now in post-publication) continue being ignored, overlooked, and/or even considered meritable. If this were journalism rather than Bible study, there would be the sound of dropping shoes audibly echoing. Yes, it results in bad theology, but the problem is more fundamental than that. This isn't an issue of "opinion"--it's simply and flagrantly false, and demonstrably so. The award consideration only compounds the error storm across a wider swathe of culpability. Sadly, this particular error is ubiquitous and long-lived, which makes it all the more egregious.

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 10:48 AM

i know nothing about the author and never read the book. I don’t even know if the image is in context. I’m certainly not giving my own views on this subject.

But, that being said, it seems that the text shown in the OP is contrasting the approach of the Pharisees view of the Law with Jesus. Not the Law itself. We can of course debate whether his views of the Pharisees is correct (and I understand modern Jews disagree). But I think the objections of the OP don’t seem to address what was actually said.

my 2¢ anyway.

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DAL | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 10:55 AM

Well it sounded like a negative complaint with a touch of theology which isn’t allowed in the forums.  I made a comment about not agreeing with Doug Moo and I quickly got reported by someone who had nothing better to do and got an email by a self appointed forum moderator when in reality while I didn’t really agree with Moo on some stuff, I was actually recommending his Romans commentary.  So go figure! Again, I’m not surprised! There are definitely double standards when it comes to certain posts by certain people.  

DAL

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 1:56 PM

Phil Gons (Faithlife):
Please keep your discussions focused on Logos Bible Software: our software, products, websites, company, tools, etc.

The original post was definitively about a FL product and less clearly about a FL website. Whew, one down.

Phil Gons (Faithlife):
Please do not discuss or debate biblical, theological, or other controversial topics.

I've always assumed this meant biblical study, theological studies, ... not statements of fact which usually belong to many disciplines. Was the post longer than necessary to make the point? Yes. Was the post filled with hyperbole? Yes. Did the post complicate reading with idiosyncratic typography - all caps, bold, ...? Yes. But, if you watch the forums, you will know that is the normal communication style of the original poster -- and the reason I often don't finish reading his posts if there is no question that needs answering or his position on a topic is not of personal interest.

I suspect that Faithlife unintentionally initiated this brouhaha by including a factually offensive quotation in the blog. Considering the amount of tagging that encourages us to trust FL on the literal meaning of the text, I suspect this is exactly the sort of thing that would be posted on the forums as a tagging error or bug were it within the tool. And Sean would respond with an explanation and/or correction. It is clear from the tone that this over-simplification is important to the OP although (or perhaps, because) is common.

Feel free to disagree with me, but the above is why I did not report the post as an abuse. Each of you who believe it to be an abuse are free to report it as such and leave it to FL to choose a response.

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 4:41 PM

David Wanat:

i know nothing about the author and never read the book. I don’t even know if the image is in context. I’m certainly not giving my own views on this subject.

But, that being said, it seems that the text shown in the OP is contrasting the approach of the Pharisees view of the Law with Jesus. Not the Law itself. We can of course debate whether his views of the Pharisees is correct (and I understand modern Jews disagree). But I think the objections of the OP don’t seem to address what was actually said.

my 2¢ anyway.

I don't understand your post. The highlighted portion of the quoted passage in the OP contains two statements, both of which blatantly contradict multiple statements of Scripture.

David Wanat:
the objections of the OP don’t seem to address what was actually said.

What was actually said: "the Pharisees focused on the law"

This is emphatically false, as Yeishuua` is constantly upbraiding them for contorting and ignoring the law so that they may keep their traditions. It is His number one charge against them. Josephus, who identified as a Pharisee, plainly says that it was the Sadducees who had the platform of strict obeisance to the law--the Pharisees were very amenable to novel and elastic "interpretations" of the law crafted to suit their own desires and objectives.

What was actually said: "the Pharisees focused on the law while neglecting God's love"

This is impossible by definition...that is, the Bible's own constantly emphasized definitions, only a smattering of which include 1 Jn. 5:3, Jn. 14:15, 15:10, Exo. 20:6, Deut. 5:10, 7:9, 11:1, 30:16, Josh. 22:5, Dan. 9:4, Jam. 2:8, Rom. 13:10, Gal 5:14. To be clear, "what was actually said" can't truly rise to the level of being doctrinal because it is ontologically and epistemically UNbiblical. It violates the Bible's repeatedly stated definitions because anyone neglecting love is inherently rejecting the law. It is impossible to "keep the law" and not love. THE PHARISEES DIDN'T KEEP TOHRAAH, and that was Yeishuua`'s primary and fundamental charge against them. Folks can look at Mk. 7:5-13 for themselves, but the key point is Mk. 7:8 where "the commandments of God" equals the law, which Yeishuua` declares they neglected in favor of men's (not YHWH's) traditions. In Mk. 7:13, He emphasizes that this is their habitual practice and thus the source of His ire. How can anyone read that and say that the Pharisees "kept/focused on" the law???? The exact opposite is true.

What was actually said: "Jesus condemns them for following the letter of the law"

As stated in the OP, this statement is false on its face. It could easily say something that doesn't flirt with dishonesty, but it doesn't. If the book stated, "Yeishuua` (or Jesus) condemns them for only following the law in the little things but not in the big, weightier things", that would have been entirely true, but, I strongly suspect, it also would not have left the particular flavor and aftertaste the author/editorial & publishing team/award grantors wish to imply.

Regardless of the manner or intention in which the highlighted statements were made, they easily meet the criterion of "practicing to deceive". They were crafted to draw (as in "sketch in" as opposed to "extract") a long-standing but nevertheless patently false distinction between "law" (that is, YHWH's expressed will) and "love/grace". The difference between what this award nominee and the Bible describe is dramatically drastic.

Yes, because of the book's subject matter, any discussion of it inevitably veers into religious and doctrinal discussion. My complaint isn't per se with the doctrinal interpretation and theological and eschatological outcomes, potentially tragic as they may be. It's with the blatant falsehoods...and that particularly in light of the potential laudation this work is poised to receive.

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David Wanat | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 8:01 PM

I think you’re reading more into it than intended. But I think at this point, we’d be going into theological debate.

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MJ. Smith | Forum Activity | Replied: Sun, Apr 11 2021 8:32 PM

I would be going into logic and linguistics Wink

Both works (or their equivalents) should be prerequisites to hermeneutics and exegesis ... even when the text is a blog post or a forum post.

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Gregory Lawhorn | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 12 2021 12:26 PM

David Paul:
This isn't an issue of "opinion"--it's simply and flagrantly false, and demonstrably so.

Many disagree. I refer you to David Martyn Lloyd-Jones' excellent "Studies in the Sermon on the Mount". 

What's more, Faithlife also sells Roman Catholic resources, prosperity "gospel" resources, and other false teachers and theologies (such as books by Frederick K. Price and Sarah Young), all of which are significantly more spiritually dangerous than a disagreement over whether the Pharisees followed the Law "to the letter" while missing the spirit of the Law, or completely missed the "letter of the Law." Those other false teachings and doctrines are also "simply and flagrantly false, and demonstrably so." 

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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 12 2021 12:43 PM

Gregory,

I find your examples of "false teachers and theologies" to be offensive, unkind and against the rules in this forum. Please consider editing your post to bring it in line with the overall spirit here, which I believe recognizes that there are different teachers and theologies, and different interpretations, and that all of use want to learn more and have to learn more, using Logos software and Logos resources to that end. 

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David Paul | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 12 2021 1:17 PM

Gregory Lawhorn:
Many disagree.

Indeed! Ah, the many...Mt. 7:12, 13; Mt. 7:21, 22, 23 etc. etc. etc.

Fwiw, the context of both of these scenarios is that "many" are not keeping YHWH's will/law.

Gregory Lawhorn:
What's more, Faithlife also sells Roman Catholic resources, prosperity "gospel" resources, and other false teachers and theologies (such as books by Frederick K. Price and Sarah Young), all of which are significantly more spiritually dangerous than a disagreement over whether the Pharisees followed the Law "to the letter" while missing the spirit of the Law, or completely missed the "letter of the Law." Those other false teachings and doctrines are also "simply and flagrantly false, and demonstrably so."

I think there is a difference in that FL doesn't publish those resources, and it is primarily their role as publisher that I am addressing. I have long advocated for Bart Ehrman resources to be available in Logos even though he is a nonbeliever. I have to know what he says if I am to understand what he says, and I must understand what he says before I can credibly attempt to refute him. That said, I would probably caution Lexham against publishing Ehrman. Publishing is quite akin to endorsing, particularly since publishers typically function as editors, thus participating in what ends up in the final product.

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NB.Mick | Forum Activity | Replied: Mon, Apr 12 2021 1:50 PM

OT:

David Paul:
I have long advocated for Bart Ehrman resources to be available in Logos even though he is a nonbeliever. I have to know what he says if I am to understand what he says, and I must understand what he says before I can credibly attempt to refute him. That said, I would probably caution Lexham against publishing Ehrman.

note that currently four books by Ehrman are sold by FL, one a PrePub shipping on Wednesday - just in case you missed it (none of those published by Lexham).  

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