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JESUS THE CHRIST - THE MERIDIAN OF TIME. Chapter 6 (LDS)
LDS.org ^ | James E. Talmage

Posted on 05/14/2008 6:02:09 AM PDT by sevenbak

JESUS THE CHRIST, by Apostle James E. Talmage is a doctrinal study on the life and ministry of Christ, and is considered by most Mormons as the authoritative treatise on Savior's mission and message.

CHAPTER 6, THE MERIDIAN OF TIME

Unto Moses, with whom the Lord spake "face to face, as a man speaketh unto his friend," the course of the human race, both as then past and future, was made known; and the coming of the Redeemer was recognized by him as the event of greatest import in all the happenings to which the earth and its inhabitants would be witness. The curse of God had aforetime fallen upon the wicked, and upon the earth because of them, "For they would not hearken unto his voice, nor believe on his Only Begotten Son, even him whom he declared should come in the meridian of time, who was prepared from before the foundation of the world." In this scripture appears the earliest mention of the expressive and profoundly significant designation of the period in which the Christ should appear -- the meridian of time. If the expression be regarded as figurative, be it remembered the figure is the Lord's.

The term "meridian," as commonly used, conveys the thought of a principal division of time or space; thus we speak of the hours before the daily noon as ante-meridian (a.m.) and those after noon as post-meridian (p.m.). So the years and the centuries of human history are divided by the great event of the birth of Jesus Christ. The years preceding that epoch-making occurrence are now designated as time Before Christ (B.C.); while subsequent years are each specified as a certain Year of our Lord, or, as in the Latin tongue, Anno Domini (A.D.). Thus the world's chronology has been adjusted and systematized with reference to the time of the Savior's birth; and this method of reckoning is in use among all Christian nations. It is instructive to note that a similar system was adopted by the isolated branch of the house of Israel that had been brought from the land of Palestine to the western continent; for from the appearance of the promised sign among the people betokening the birth of Him who had been so abundantly predicted by their prophets, the Nephite reckoning of the years, starting with the departure of Lehi and his colony from Jerusalem, was superseded by the annals of the new era.

The occasion of the Savior's advent was preappointed; and the time thereof was specifically revealed through authorized prophets on each of the hemispheres. The long history of the Israelitish nation had unfolded a succession of events that found a relative culmination in the earthly mission of the Messiah. That we may the better comprehend the true significance of the Lord's life and ministry while in the flesh, some consideration should be given to the political, social, and religious condition of the people amongst whom He appeared and with whom He lived and died. Such consideration involves at least a brief review of the antecedent history of the Hebrew nation. The posterity of Abraham through Isaac and Jacob had early come to be known by the title in which they took undying pride and found inspiring promise, Israelites, or the children of Israel. Collectively they were so designated throughout the dark days of their bondage in Egypt; so during the four decades of the exodus and the return to the land of promise, and on through the period of their prosperity as a mighty people under the administration of the judges, and as a united monarchy during the successive reigns of Saul, David, and Solomon.

Immediately following the death of Solomon, about 975 B.C. according to the most generally accepted chronology, the nation was disrupted by revolt. The tribe of Judah, part of the tribe of Benjamin, and small remnants of a few other tribes remained true to the royal succession, and accepted Rehoboam, son of Solomon, as their king; while the rest, usually spoken of as the Ten Tribes, broke their allegiance to the house of David, and made Jeroboam, an Ephraimite, their king. The Ten Tribes retained the title Kingdom of Israel though also known as Ephraim. Rehoboam and his adherents were distinctively called the Kingdom of Judah. For about two hundred and fifty years the two kingdoms maintained their separate autonomy; then, about 722 or 721 B.C., the independent status of the Kingdom of Israel was destroyed, and the captive people were transported to Assyria by Shalmanezer and others. Subsequently they disappeared so completely as to be called the Lost Tribes. The Kingdom of Judah was recognized as a nation for about one hundred and thirty years longer; then, about 588 B.C., it was brought into subjection by Nebuchadnezzar, through whom the Babylonian captivity was inaugurated. For three score years and ten Judah was kept in exile and virtual bondage, in consequence of their transgression as had been predicted through Jeremiah. Then the Lord softened the hearts of their captors, and their restoration was begun under the decree of Cyrus the Persian, who had subdued the Babylonian kingdom. The Hebrew people were permitted to return to Judea, and to enter upon the work of rebuilding the temple at Jerusalem.

A great company of the exiled Hebrews availed themselves of this opportunity to return to the lands of their fathers, though many elected to remain in the country of their captivity, preferring Babylon to Israel. The "whole congregation" of the Jews who returned from the Babylonian exile were but "forty and two thousand three hundred and three score, beside their servants and their maids, of whom there were seven thousand three hundred thirty and seven." The relatively small size of the migrating nation is further shown by the register of their beasts of burden. While those who did return strove valiantly to reestablish themselves as the house of David, and to regain some measure of their former prestige and glory, the Jews were never again a truly independent people. In turn they were preyed upon by Greece, Egypt, and Syria; but about 164-163 B.C., the people threw off, in part at least, the alien yoke, as a result of the patriotic revolt led by the Maccabees, the most prominent of whom was Judas Maccabeus. The temple service, which had been practically abolished through the proscription of victorious foes, was reestablished. In the year 163 B.C., the sacred structure was rededicated, and the joyful occasion was thereafter celebrated in annual festival as the Feast of Dedication. During the reign of the Maccabees, however, the temple fell into an almost ruinous condition, more as a result of the inability of the reduced and impoverished people to maintain it than through any further decline of religious zeal. In the hope of insuring a greater measure of national protection, the jews entered into an unequal alliance with the Romans and eventually became tributary to them, in which condition the Jewish nation continued throughout the period of our Lord's ministry. In the meridian of time Rome was virtually mistress of the world. When Christ was born, Augustus Caesar was emperor of Rome, and the Idumean, Herod, surnamed the Great, was the vassal king of Judea.

Some semblance of national autonomy was maintained by the Jews under Roman dominion, and their religious ceremonials were not seriously interfered with. The established orders in the priesthood were recognized, and the official acts of the national council, or Sanhedrin, were held to be binding by Roman law; though the judicial powers of this body did not extend to the infliction of capital punishment without the sanction of the imperial executive. It was the established policy of Rome to allow to her tributary and vassal peoples freedom in worship so long as the mythological deities, dear to the Romans, were not maligned nor their altars desecrated.

Needless to say, the Jews took not kindly to alien domination, though for many generations they had been trained in that experience, their reduced status having ranged from nominal vassalage to servile bondage. They were already largely a dispersed people. All the Jews in Palestine at the time of Christ's birth constituted but a small remnant of the great Davidic nation. The Ten Tribes, distinctively the aforetime kingdom of Israel, had then long been lost to history, and the people of Judah had been widely scattered among the nations.

In their relations with other peoples the Jews generally endeavored to maintain a haughty exclusiveness, which brought upon them Gentile ridicule. Under Mosaic law Israel had been required to keep apart from other nations; they attached supreme importance to their Abrahamic lineage as children of the covenant, "an holy people unto the Lord," whom He had chosen "to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth." Judah had experienced the woeful effects of dalliance with pagan nations, and, at the time we are now considering, a Jew who permitted himself unnecessary association with a Gentile became an unclean being requiring ceremonial cleansing to free him from defilement. Only in strict isolation did the leaders find hope of insuring the perpetuity of the nation.

It is no exaggeration to say that the Jews hated all other peoples and were reciprocally despised and contemned by all others. They manifested especial dislike for the Samaritans, perhaps because this people persisted in their efforts to establish some claim of racial relationship. These Samaritans were a mixed people, and were looked upon by the Jews as a mongrel lot, unworthy of decent respect. When the Ten Tribes were led into captivity by the king of Assyria, foreigners were sent to populate Samaria. These intermarried with such Israelites as had escaped the captivity; and some modification of the religion of Israel, embodying at least the profession of Jehovah worship, survived in Samaria. The Samaritan rituals were regarded by the Jews as unorthodox, and the people as reprobate. At the time of Christ the enmity between Jew and Samaritan was so intense that travelers between Judea and Galilee would make long detours rather than pass through the province of Samaria which lay between. The Jews would have no dealings with the Samaritans.

The proud feeling of self-sufficiency, the obsession for exclusiveness and separation -- so distinctively a Jewish trait at that time -- was inculcated at the maternal knee and emphasized in synagog and school. The Talmud, which in codified form post-dates the time of Christ's ministry, enjoined all Jews against reading the books of alien nations, declaring that none who so offended could consistently hope for Jehovah's favor. Josephus gives his endorsement to similar injunction, and records that wisdom among the Jews meant only familiarity with the law and ability to discourse thereon. A thorough acquaintanceship with the law was demanded as strongly as other studies were discountenanced. Thus the lines between learned and unlearned came to be rigidly drawn; and, as an inevitable consequence those who were accounted learned, or so considered themselves, looked down upon their unscholarly fellows as a class distinct and inferior.

Long before the birth of Christ, the Jews had ceased to be a united people even in matters of the law, though the law was their chief reliance as a means of maintaining national solidarity. As early as four score years after the return from the Babylonian exile, and we know not with accuracy how much earlier, there had come to be recognized, as men having authority, certain scholars afterward known as scribes, and honored rabbis or teachers. In the days of Ezra and Nehemiah these specialists in the law constituted a titled class, to whom deference and honor were paid. Ezra is designated "the priest, the scribe, even a scribe of the words of the commandments of the Lord, and of his statutes to Israel." The scribes of those days did valuable service under Ezra, and later under Nehemiah, in compiling the sacred writings then extant; and in Jewish usage those appointed as guardians and expounders of the law came to be known as members of the Great Synagog, or Great Assembly, concerning which we have little information through canonical channels. According to Talmudic record, the organization consisted of one hundred and twenty eminent scholars. The scope of their labors, according to the admonition traditionally perpetuated by themselves, is thus expressed: Be careful in judgment; set up many scholars, and make a hedge about the law. They followed this behest by much study and careful consideration of all traditional details in administration; by multiplying scribes and rabbis unto themselves; and, as some of them interpreted the requirement of setting up many scholars, by writing many books and tractates; moreover, they made a fence or hedge about the law by adding numerous rules, which prescribed with great exactness the officially established proprieties for every occasion.

Scribes and rabbis were exalted to the highest rank in the estimation of the people, higher than that of the Levitical or priestly orders; and rabbinical sayings were given precedence over the utterances of the prophets, since the latter were regarded as but messengers or spokesmen, whereas the living scholars were of themselves sources of wisdom and authority. Such secular powers as Roman suzerainty permitted the Jews to retain were vested in the hierarchy, whose members were able thus to gather unto themselves practically all official and professional honors. As a natural result of this condition, there was practically no distinction between Jewish civil and ecclesiastical law, either as to the code or its administration. Rabbinism comprised as an essential element the doctrine of the equal authority of oral rabbinical tradition with the written word of the law. The aggrandizement implied in the application of the title "Rabbi" and the self-pride manifest in welcoming such adulation were especially forbidden by the Lord, who proclaimed Himself the one Master; and, as touching the interpretation of the title held by some as "father," Jesus proclaimed but one Father and He in heaven: "But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is Master, even Christ."

The scribes, whether so named or designated by the more distinguishing appellation, rabbis, were repeatedly denounced by Jesus, because of the dead literalism of their teachings, and the absence of the spirit of righteousness and virile morality therefrom; and in such denunciations the Pharisees are often coupled with the scribes. The judgment of the Christ upon them is sufficiently expressed by His withering imprecation: "Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites!"

The origin of the Pharisees is not fixed by undisputed authority as to either time or circumstance; though it is probably that the sect or party had a beginning in connection with the return of the Jews from the Babylonian captivity. New ideas and added conceptions of the meaning of the law were promulgated by Jews who had imbibed of the spirit of Babylon; and the resulting innovations were accepted by some and rejected by others. The name "Pharisee" does not occur in the Old Testament, nor in the Apocrypha, though it is probable that the Assideans mentioned in the books of the Maccabees were the original Pharisees. By derivation the name expresses the thought of separatism; the Pharisee, in the estimation of his class, was distinctively set apart from the common people, to whom he considered himself as truly superior as the Jews regarded themselves in contrast with other nations. Pharisees and scribes were one in all essentials of profession, and rabbinism was specifically their doctrine.

In the New Testament the Pharisees are often mentioned as in opposition to the Sadducees; and such were the relations of the two parties that it becomes a simpler matter to contrast one with the other than to consider each separately. The Sadducees came into existence as a reactionary organization during the second century B.C., in connection with an insurgent movement against the Maccabean party. Their platform was that of opposition to the ever increasing mass of traditional lore, with which the law was not merely being fenced or hedged about for safety, but under which it was being buried. The Sadducees stood for the sanctity of the law as written and preserved, while they rejected the whole mass of rabbinical precept both as orally transmitted and as collated and codified in the records of the scribes. The Pharisees formed the more popular party; the Sadducees figured as the aristocratic minority. At the time of Christ's birth the Pharisees existed as an organized body numbering over six thousand men, with Jewish women very generally on their side in sympathy and effort; while the Sadducees were so small a faction and of such limited power that, when they were placed in official positions, they generally followed the policy of the Pharisees as a matter of incumbent expediency. The Pharisees were the Puritans of the time, unflinching in their demand for compliance with the traditional rules as well as the original law of Moses. In this connection note Paul's confession of faith and practice when arraigned before Agrippa -- "That after the most straitest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee." The Sadducees prided themselves on strict compliance with the law, as they construed it, irrespective of all scribes or rabbis. The Sadducees stood for the temple and its prescribed ordinances, the Pharisees for the synagog and its rabbinical teachings. It is difficult to decide which were the more technical if we judge each party by the standard of its own profession. By way of illustration: the Sadducees held to the literal and full exaction of the Mosaic penalty -- an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth the Pharisees contended on the authority of rabbinical dictum, that the wording was figurative, and that therefore the penalty could be met by a fine in money or goods.

Pharisees and Sadducees differed on many important if not fundamental matters of belief and practice, including the preexistence of spirits, the reality of a future state involving reward and punishment, the necessity for individual self-denial, the immortality of the soul, and the resurrection from the dead; in each of which the Pharisees stood for the affirmative while the Sadducees denied. Josephus avers -- the doctrine of the Sadducees is that the soul and body perish together; the law is all that they are concerned to observe. They were "a skeptical school of aristocratic traditionalists; adhering only to the Mosaic law."

Among the many other sects and parties established on the ground of religious or political differences, or both, are the Essenes, the Nazarites, the Herodians and the Galileans. The Essenes were characterized by professions of ultrapiety; they considered even the strictness of Pharisaic profession as weak and insufficient; they guarded membership in their order by severe exactions extending through a first and a second novitiate; they were forbidden even to touch food prepared by strangers; they practiced strict temperance and rigid self-denial, indulged in hard labor -- preferably that of agriculture, and were forbidden to trade as merchants, to take part in war, or to own or employ slaves. Nazarites are not named in the New Testament, though of specific record in the earlier scriptures; and from sources other than scriptural we learn of their existence at and after the time of Christ. The Nazarite was one of either sex who was bound to abstinence and sacrifice by a voluntary vow for special service to God; the period of the vow might be limited or for life. While the Essenes cultivated an ascetic brotherhood, the Nazarites were devoted to solitary discipline.

The Herodians constituted a politico-religious party who favored the plans of the Herods under the professed belief that through that dynasty alone could the status of the Jewish people be maintained and a reestablishment of the nation be secured. We find mention of the Herodians laying aside their partisan antipathies and acting in concert with the Pharisees in the effort to convict the Lord Jesus and bring Him to death. The Galileans or people of Galilee were distinguished from their fellow Israelites of Judea by greater simplicity and less ostentatious devotion in matters pertaining to the law. They were opposed to innovations, yet were generally more liberal or less bigoted than some of the professedly devout Judeans. They were prominent as able defenders in the wars of the people, and won for themselves a reputation for bravery and patriotism. They are mentioned in connection with certain tragical occurrences during our Lord's lifetime.

The authority of the priesthood was outwardly acknowledged by the Jews at the time of Christ; and the appointed order of service for priest and Levite was duly observed. During the reign of David, the descendants of Aaron, who were the hereditary priests in Israel, had been divided into twenty-four courses, and to each course the labors of the sanctuary were allotted in turn. Representatives of but four of these courses returned from the captivity, but from these the orders were reconstructed on the original plan. In the days of Herod the Great the temple ceremonies were conducted with great display and outward elaborateness, as an essential matter of consistency with the splendor of the structure, which surpassed in magnificence all earlier sanctuaries. Priests and Levites, therefore, were in demand for continuous service, though the individuals were changed at short intervals according to the established system. In the regard of the people the priests were inferior to the rabbis, and the scholarly attainments of a scribe transcended in honor that pertaining to ordination in the priesthood. The religion of the time was a matter of ceremony and formality, of ritual and performance; it had lost the very spirit of worship, and the true conception of the relationship between Israel and Israel's God was but a dream of the past.

Such in brief were the principal features of the world's condition, and particularly as concerns the Jewish people, when Jesus the Christ was born in the meridian of time.

NOTES TO CHAPTER 6

1. The Sanhedrin. -- This, the chief court or high council of the Jews, derives its name from Greek sunedrion, signifying "a council." In English it is sometimes though inaccurately written "Sanhedrim." The Talmud traces the origin of this body to the calling of the seventy elders whom Moses associated with himself, making seventy-one in all, to administer as judges in Israel (Num. 11:16, 17). The Sanhedrin in the time of Christ, as also long before, comprised seventy-one members, including the high priest who presided in the assembly. It appears to have been known in its earlier period as the Senate, and was occasionally so designated even after Christ's death, (Josephus, Antiquities xii, 3:3; compare Acts 5:21); the name "Sanhedrin" came into general use during the reign of Herod the Great; but the term is not of Biblical usage; its equivalent in the New Testament is "council" (Matt. 5:22; 10: 17; 26:59) though it must be remembered that the same term is applied to courts of lesser jurisdiction than that of the Sanhedrin, and to local tribunals. (Matt. 5:22; 10:17; 26:59; Mark 13:9; see also Acts 25:12.)

The following, from the Standard Bible Dictionary, is instructive: "Those qualified to be members were in general of the priestly house and especially of the Sadducean nobility. But from the days of Queen Alexandra (69-68 B.C.) onward, there were with these chief priests also many pharisees in it under the name of scribes and elders. These three classes are found combined in Matt. 27:41; Mark 11:27; 14:43, 53; 15:1. How such members were appointed is not entirely clear. The aristocratic character of the body and the history of its origin forbid the belief that it was by election. Its nucleus probably consisted of the members of certain ancient families, to which, however, from time to time others were added by the secular rulers. The presiding officer was the high priest, who at first exercised in it more than the authority of a member, claiming a voice equal to that of the rest of the body. But after the reduction of the high priesthood from a hereditary office to one bestowed by the political ruler according to his pleasure, and the frequent changes in the office introduced by the new system, the high priest naturally lost his prestige. Instead of holding in his hands the `government of the nation,' he came to be but one of many to share this power; those who had served as high priests being still in esteem among their nation, and having lost their office not for any reason that could be considered valid by the religious sense of the community, exerted a large influence over the decisions of the assembly. In the New Testament they are regarded as the rulers (Matt. 26:59; 27:41; Acts 4:5, 8; Luke 23:13, 35; John 7:26), and Josephus' testimony supports this view. The functions of the Sanhedrin were religious and moral, and also political. In the latter capacity they further exercised administrative as well as judicial functions. As a religious tribunal, the Sanhedrin wielded a potent influence over the whole of the Jewish world (Acts 9:2); but as a court of justice, after the division of the country upon the death of Herod, its jurisdiction was limited to Judea. Here, however, its power was absolute even to the passing of sentence of death (Josephus, Ant. xiv, 9:3, 4; Matt. 26:3; Acts 4:5; 6:12; 22:30), although it had no authority to carry the sentence into execution except as approved and ordered by the representative of the Roman government. The law by which the Sanhedrin governed was naturally the Jewish, and in the execution of it this tribunal had a police of its own, and made arrests at its discretion (Matt. 26:47).... While the general authority of the Sanhedrin extended over the whole of Judea, the towns in the country had local councils of their own (Matt. 5:22; 10:17; Mark 13:9; Josephus, B.J. ii, 20:5), for the administration of local affairs. These were constituted of elders (Luke 7:3), at least seven in number, (Josephus, Ant. iv, 8:14; B.J. ii, 20:5), and in some of the largest towns as many as twenty-three. What the relation of these to the central council in Jerusalem was does not appear clearly.... Some sort of mutual recognition existed among them; for whenever the judges of the local court could not agree it seems that they were in the habit of referring their cases to the Sanhedrin in Jerusalem. (Josephus, Ant. iv, 8:14; Mishna, San. 11:2)."

2. Talmud. -- "The body of Jewish civil and religious law (and discussion directly or remotely relating thereto) not comprised in the Pentateuch, commonly including the Mishna and the Gemara, but sometimes limited to the latter; written in Aramaic. It exists in two great collections, the Palestinian Talmud, or Talmud of the Land of Israel, or Talmud of the West, or more popularly, Jerusalem Talmud, embodying the discussions on the Mishna, of the Palestinian doctors from the 2d to the middle of the 5th century; and the Babylonian, embodying those of the Jewish doctors in Babylonia, from about 190 to the 7th century." -- New Standard Dict. The Mishna comprises the earlier portions of the Talmud; the Gemara is made up of later writings and is largely an exposition of the Mishna. An edition of the Babylonian Talmud alone (issued at Vienna in 1682) comprised twenty-four tomes. (Geikie.)

3. Rabbis. -- The title Rabbi is equivalent to our distinctive appellations Doctor, Master, or Teacher. By derivation it means Master or my Master, thus connoting dignity and rank associated with politeness of address. A definite explanation of the term is given by John (1:38), and the same meaning attaches by implication to its use as recorded by Matthew (23:8). It was applied as a title of respect to Jesus on several occasions (Matt. 23:7, 8; 26:25, 49; Mark 9:5; 11:21; 14:45; John 1:38, 49; 3:2, 26; 4:31; 6:25; 9:2; 11:8). The title was of comparatively recent usage in the time of Christ, as it appears to have first come into general use during the reign of Herod the Great, though the earlier teachers, of the class without the name of Rabbis, were generally reverenced, and the title was carried back to them by later usage. Rab was an inferior title and Rabban a superior one to Rabbi. Rabboni was expressive of most profound respect, love and honor (see John 20:16). At the time of our Lord's ministry the Rabbis were held in high esteem, and rejoiced in the afflations of precedence and honor among men. They were almost exclusively of the powerful Pharisaic party.

The following is from Geikie's Life and Words of Christ, vol. 1, chap. 6: "If the most important figures in the society of Christ's day were the pharisees, it was because they were the Rabbis or teachers of the Law. As such they received superstitious honor, which was, indeed, the great motive, with many, to court the title or join the party. The Rabbis were classed with Moses, the patriarchs, and the prophets, and claimed equal reverence. Jacob and Joseph were both said to have been Rabbis. The Targum of Jonathan substitutes Rabbis, or Scribes, for the word `prophets' where it occurs. Josephus speaks of the prophets of Saul's day as Rabbis. In the Jerusalem Targum all the patriarchs are learned Rabbis.... They were to be dearer to Israel than father or mother -- because parents avail only in this world [as was then taught] but the Rabbi forever. They were set above kings, for is it not written `Through me kings reign'? Their entrance into a house brought a blessing; to live or to eat with them was the highest good fortune.... The Rabbis went even further than this in exalting their order. The Mishna declares that it is a greater crime to speak anything to their discredit, than to speak against the words of the Law.... Yet in form, the Law received boundless honor. Every saying of the Rabbis had to be based on some words of it, which were, however, explained in their own way. The spirit of the times, the wild fanaticism of the people, and their own bias, tended alike to make them set value only on ceremonies and worthless externalisms, to the utter neglect of the spirit of the sacred writings. Still it was held that the Law needed no confirmation, while the words of the Rabbis did. So far as the Roman authority under which they lived left them free, the Jews willingly put all power in the hands of the Rabbis. They or their nominees filled every office, from the highest in the priesthood to the lowest in the community. They were the casuists, the teachers, the priests, the judges, the magistrates, and the physicians of the nation.... The central and dominant characteristic of the teaching of the Rabbis was the certain advent of a great national Deliverer -- the Messiah or Anointed of God or in the Greek translation of the title, the Christ. In no other nation than the Jews has such a conception ever taken such root or shown such vitality.... It was agreed among the Rabbis that His birthplace must be Bethlehem, and that He must rise from the tribe of Judah."

Individual rabbis gathered disciples about them, and, inevitably, rivalry became manifest. Rabbinical schools and academies were established, each depending for its popularity on the greatness of some rabbi. The most famous of these institutions in the time of Herod I were the school of Hillel and that of his rival Shammai. Later, tradition invested these with the title "the fathers of old." It appears from the trifling matters over which the followers of these two disagreed, that only by opposition could either maintain a distinguishing status. Hillel is reputed as the grandfather of Gamaliel, the rabbi and doctor of the law at whose feet Saul of Tarsus, afterward Paul the apostle, received his early instruction (Acts 22:3). So far as we have historic record of the views, principles or beliefs advocated by the rival schools of Hillel and Shammai, it appears that the former stood for a greater degree of liberality and tolerance, while the later emphasized a strict and possibly narrow interpretation of the law and its associated traditions. The dependence of the rabbinical schools on the authority of tradition is illustrated by an incident of record to the effect that even the prestige of the great Hillel did not insure him against uproar when once he spoke without citing precedent; only when he added that so had his masters Abtalion and Shemajah spoken did the tumult subside.

4. Sadducean Denial of the Resurrection. -- As set forth in the text, the Sadducees formed an association numerically small as compared with the more popular and influential pharisees. In the Gospels the Pharisees are of frequent mention, and very commonly in connection with the scribes, while the Sadducees are less frequently named. In the Acts of the Apostles, the Sadducees appear frequently as opponents of the Church. This condition was doubtless due to the prominence given the resurrection from the dead among the themes of the apostolic preaching, the Twelve continually bearing testimony to the actual resurrection of Christ. Sadducean doctrine denied the actuality and possibility of a bodily resurrection, the contention resting mainly on the ground that Moses, who was regarded as the supreme mortal lawgiver in Israel, and the chief mouthpiece of Jehovah, had written nothing concerning life after death. The following is taken from Smith's Dictionary of the Bible, article "Sadducees," as touching this matter: "The denial of man's resurrection after death followed in the conception of the Sadducees as a logical conclusion from their denial that Moses had revealed to the Israelites the Oral Law. For on a point so momentous as a second life beyond the grave, no religious party among the Jews would have deemed themselves bound to accept any doctrine as an article of faith, unless it had been proclaimed by Moses, their great legislator; and it is certain that in the written Law of the Pentateuch there is a total absence of any assertion by Moses of the resurrection of the dead. This fact is presented to Christians in a striking manner by the well-known words of the pentateuch which are quoted by Christ in argument with the Sadducees on this subject (Ex. 3:6, 16; Mark 12:26, 27; Matt. 22:31, 32; Luke 20:37). It cannot be doubted that in such a case Christ would quote to His powerful adversaries the most cogent text in the Law; and yet the text actually quoted does not do more than suggest an inference on this great doctrine. It is true that passages in other parts of the Old Testament express a belief in the resurrection (Isa. 26:19; Dan. 12:2; Job 19:26; and in some of the psalms); and it may at first sight be a subject of surprise that the Sadducees were not convinced by the authority of those passages. But although the Sadducees regarded the books which contained these passages as sacred, it is more than doubtful whether any of the Jews regarded them as sacred in precisely the same sense as the written Law. To the Jews Moses was and is a colossal form, preeminent in authority above all subsequent prophets."

5. The Temple of Herod. -- "Herod's purpose in the great undertaking (that of restoring the temple, and of enlarging it on a plan of unprecedented magnificence] was that of aggrandizing himself and the nation, rather than the rendering of homage to Jehovah. His proposition to rebuild or restore the temple on a scale of increased magnificence was regarded with suspicion and received with disfavor by the Jews, who feared that were the ancient edifice demolished, the arbitrary monarch might abandon his plan and the people would be left without a temple. To allay these fears the king proceeded to reconstruct and restore the old edifice, part by part, directing the work so that at no time was the temple service seriously interrupted. So little of the ancient structure was allowed to stand, however, that the temple of Herod must be regarded as a new creation. The work was begun about sixteen years before the birth of Christ; and while the Holy House itself was practically completed within a year and a half, this part of the labor having been performed by a body of one thousand priests specially trained for the purpose, the temple area was a scene of uninterrupted building operations down to the year 63 A.D. We read that in the time of Christ's ministry the temple had been forty-six years in building; and at that time it was unfinished.

"The Biblical record gives us little information regarding this the last and the greatest of ancient temples; for what we know concerning it we are indebted mainly to Josephus, with some corroborative testimony found in the Talmud. In all essentials the Holy House, or Temple proper, was similar to the two earlier houses of sanctuary, though externally far more elaborate and imposing than either; but in the matter of surrounding courts and associated buildings, the Temple of Herod preeminently excelled.... Yet its beauty and grandeur lay in architectural excellence rather than in the sanctity of its worship or in the manifestation of the Divine Presence within its walls. Its ritual and service were largely man-prescribed; for while the letter of the Mosaic Law was professedly observed, the law had been supplemented and in many features supplanted by rule and priestly prescription. The Jews professed to consider it holy, and by them it was proclaimed as the House of the Lord. Devoid though it was of the divine accompaniments of earlier shrines accepted of God, and defiled as it was by priestly arrogance and usurpation, as also by the selfish interest of traffic and trade, it was nevertheless recognized even by our Lord the Christ as His Father's House. (Matt. 21:12; compare Mark 11:15; Luke 19:45.)... For thirty or more years after the death of Christ, the Jews continued the work of adding to and embellishing the temple buildings. The elaborate design conceived and projected by Herod had been practically completed; the temple was well-nigh finished, and, as soon afterward appeared, was ready for destruction. Its fate had been definitely foretold by the Savior Himself." -- From the author's House of the Lord, pp. 54-61.

6. State of the World at the Time of the Savior's Birth. -- At the beginning of the Christian era, the Jews, in common with most other nations, were subjects of the Roman empire. They were allowed a considerable degree of liberty in maintaining their religious observances and national customs generally, but their status was far from that of a free and independent people. The period was one of comparative peace -- a time marked by fewer wars and less dissension than the empire had known for many years. These conditions were favorable for the mission of the Christ, and for the founding of His Church on earth. The religious systems extant at the time of Christ's earthly ministry may be classified in a general way as Jewish and Pagan, with a minor system -- the Samaritan -- which was essentially a mixture of the other two. The children of Israel alone proclaimed the existence of the true and living God; they alone looked forward to the advent of the Messiah, whom mistakenly they awaited as a prospective conqueror coming to crush the enemies of their nation. All other nations, tongues, and peoples, bowed to pagan deities, and their worship comprised naught but the sensual rites of heathen idolatry. Paganism was a religion of form and ceremony, based on polytheism -- a belief in the existence of a multitude of gods, which deities were subject to all the vices and passions of humanity, while distinguished by immunity from death. Morality and virtue were unknown as elements of heathen service; and the dominant idea in pagan worship was that of propitiating the gods, in the hope of averting their anger and purchasing their favor. -- See the author's The Great Apostasy, 1:2-4, and notes following the chapter cited.


TOPICS: Apologetics; Other Christian; Theology; Worship
KEYWORDS: christ; jesus; lds; mormon
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
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Previous posts in this series.

JESUS THE CHRIST - Chapter 1, INTRODUCTION

JESUS THE CHRIST - Chapter 2, PREEXISTENCE AND FOREORDINATION OF THE CHRIST.

JESUS THE CHRIST - Chapter 3, THE NEED OF A REDEEMER.

JESUS THE CHRIST - Chapter 4, THE ANTEMORTAL GODSHIP OF CHRIST.

JESUS THE CHRIST - Chapter 5, EARTHLY ADVENT OF THE CHRIST PREDICTED.

1 posted on 05/14/2008 6:02:10 AM PDT by sevenbak
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To: sevenbak

This is not the Jesus I worship.


2 posted on 05/14/2008 6:13:27 AM PDT by DManA
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To: sevenbak

Pearl of Great Price...turns out it was actually a Egyptian embalming manual...is actually more exciting than this stuff...Joseph Smith’s perversions and imagination were so colorful


3 posted on 05/14/2008 6:38:23 AM PDT by genetic homophobe (it lay dormant most of my life)
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To: sevenbak
It is no exaggeration to say that the Jews hated all other peoples and were reciprocally despised and contemned by all others.

No Comment.

4 posted on 05/14/2008 6:42:49 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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To: genetic homophobe

RE: Book of Abraham. You will find this of interest. I know the Egyptian embalming manual is fun to believe, but here are the facts.

http://en.fairmormon.org/Book_of_Abraham_papyri_(long)


5 posted on 05/14/2008 6:43:26 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: sevenbak

Oops, bad link, try this.

http://en.fairmormon.org/Book_of_Abraham_papyri_(long)


6 posted on 05/14/2008 6:45:19 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: sevenbak

Hmmm, it’s not linking the last “)” in the URL, you’ll have to cut and paste it. Sorry.


7 posted on 05/14/2008 6:46:28 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: sevenbak
I know the Egyptian embalming manual is fun to believe, but here are the facts.

Aren't you the guy that posted the nonsense about Joseph Smith's statement about Quakers on the Moon might be true because the Apollo Astronauts may have landed in an unpopulated section of the Moon?

8 posted on 05/14/2008 6:47:29 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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To: P-Marlowe
Nice “snip” I suppose that's why Jesus’s message about the Good Samaritan was not needed, because the ancient Jews loved the Samaritans so much...??

Here's the context from your snip.

Under Mosaic law Israel had been required to keep apart from other nations; they attached supreme importance to their Abrahamic lineage as children of the covenant, “an holy people unto the Lord,” whom He had chosen “to be a special people unto himself, above all people that are upon the face of the earth.” Judah had experienced the woeful effects of dalliance with pagan nations, and, at the time we are now considering, a Jew who permitted himself unnecessary association with a Gentile became an unclean being requiring ceremonial cleansing to free him from defilement. Only in strict isolation did the leaders find hope of insuring the perpetuity of the nation.

It is no exaggeration to say that the Jews hated all other peoples and were reciprocally despised and contemned by all others. They manifested especial dislike for the Samaritans, perhaps because this people persisted in their efforts to establish some claim of racial relationship. These Samaritans were a mixed people, and were looked upon by the Jews as a mongrel lot, unworthy of decent respect. When the Ten Tribes were led into captivity by the king of Assyria, foreigners were sent to populate Samaria. These intermarried with such Israelites as had escaped the captivity; and some modification of the religion of Israel, embodying at least the profession of Jehovah worship, survived in Samaria. The Samaritan rituals were regarded by the Jews as unorthodox, and the people as reprobate. At the time of Christ the enmity between Jew and Samaritan was so intense that travelers between Judea and Galilee would make long detours rather than pass through the province of Samaria which lay between. The Jews would have no dealings with the Samaritans.

9 posted on 05/14/2008 6:50:46 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: P-Marlowe

Yeah, that was a mistake on my part. And I immediately and freely admitted it. Thanks for your Christlike forgiveness.


10 posted on 05/14/2008 6:52:54 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: P-Marlowe
And no, that wasn't JS’s statement, but a journal entry from another person who was infatuated with the concept, having been told such things about the Moon by his Father. Also, it was written a decade after after the supposed fact. JS recorded no such thing.
11 posted on 05/14/2008 6:55:36 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: P-Marlowe; sevenbak
"Here let me say again, according to the Book of Mormon, many of those great islands that are found in the Indian Ocean, also in the great Pacific Sea, have been planted with colonies of Israelites. Do they not resemble each other?

Go to the Sandwich Islands, to the South Sea Islands, to Japan--go to the various islands of the Pacific Ocean, and you find a general resemblance in the characters and countenances of the people. Who are they? According to the Book of Mormon, Israelites were scattered forth from time to time, and colonies planted on these islands of the ocean"

- Apostle Orson Hyde, Journal of Discourses, v. 14, p. 333

12 posted on 05/14/2008 7:09:26 AM PDT by Osage Orange (Don't Hose Me, Bro...!!!)
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To: DManA
This is not the Jesus I worship

examples of differences???

13 posted on 05/14/2008 7:21:50 AM PDT by maine-iac7 (Typical Gun-Toting, Jesus-Loving Gramma)
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To: Osage Orange
Yeah, the Scattering of Israel. Do you know where they were scattered?

I will scatter you among the heathen, Lev. 26: 33. The Lord shall scatter thee among all people, Deut. 28: 25, 37, 64. I will deliver them to be removed to all the kingdoms of the earth, Jer. 29: 18-19. I will sift the house of Israel among all nations, Amos 9: 9 (Zech. 10: 9). Jesus was sent to the lost sheep of the house of Israel, Matt. 15: 24. I have other sheep which are not of this fold, John 10: 16.

14 posted on 05/14/2008 7:27:23 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: maine-iac7

My Jesus is 1/3 of the God Head. Of one substance with the Father.


15 posted on 05/14/2008 7:28:10 AM PDT by DManA
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To: DManA

My Jesus is also 1/3 of the Godhead, but not one substance. That part is not scriptural.


16 posted on 05/14/2008 7:35:20 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: sevenbak

Says your false prophet.


17 posted on 05/14/2008 7:39:41 AM PDT by DManA
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To: sevenbak; genetic homophobe

Additional locations for the facts:

http://nowscape.com/mormon/papyrus/by_his_own_hand.htm
http://trialsofascension.net/mormon/abraham.html
http://www.bookofabraham.com/essays.html


18 posted on 05/14/2008 7:40:43 AM PDT by Godzilla (I'm out of my mind, but feel free to leave a message.)
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To: DManA; Grig

Is this post more of the “hosing” that Grig promised us last week?


19 posted on 05/14/2008 7:41:43 AM PDT by Virginia Ridgerunner ("We must not forget that there is a war on and our troops are in the thick of it!"--Duncan Hunter)
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To: DManA

Can you show me anywhere in the Old or New testaments where they are one in substance?


20 posted on 05/14/2008 7:43:20 AM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: sevenbak

In the begining, God... Genesis 1:1

The Hebrew word for God is Elohim and is PLURAL


21 posted on 05/14/2008 7:52:59 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: sevenbak

Jesus is the Word of God and was there in the begining...

Nothing was created that Jesus was not a part of...

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. John 1:3


22 posted on 05/14/2008 7:59:04 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: sevenbak

Can you show me anywhere in the Old or New testaments where they are one in substance?
_________________________________

Jesus said

I and my Father are one. John 10:30


23 posted on 05/14/2008 8:01:17 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: maine-iac7; sevenbak
This is not the Jesus I worship ... examples of differences???

Check out We're Christians just like you! for a well annotated summary of a few of the differences between the LDS Jesus and the Christian Jesus.

RE: Book of Abraham ... here are the facts.

You can get the real facts from this Award Winning Documentary, or by clicking HERE, or HERE.

24 posted on 05/14/2008 8:04:32 AM PDT by Zakeet (Be thankful we don't get all the government we pay for)
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To: sevenbak; DManA
Can you show me anywhere in the Old or New testaments where they are one in substance?

Yes: For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form... (Col. 2:9)

See also: "I and the Father are one." Again the Jews picked up stones to stone him, but Jesus said to them, "I have shown you many great miracles from the Father. For which of these do you stone me?" "We are not stoning you for any of these," replied the Jews, "but for blasphemy, because you, a mere man, claim to be God." (John 10:31-33)

Re: the John passage, if Jesus was only referencing his oneness with the Father as it pertained to purpose, will & spirit, the Jews would not have been reaching for the stones. It wasn't blasphemy for the Jews to be "one" with the purposes & will of God, and the Spirit moving upon people like David in the OT wasn't a new concept, either.

The problem is that Mormons get locked into the Father having a body and that became Joseph Smith's colossal god that was "a strange god, anyhow" statement. That's not the way folks from 1800 to 2000 years ago comprehended "substance"--as only being "physical" oneness.

Examples:

Tertullian, 213 AD: “He commands them to baptize into the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit—not into a unipersonal God.” (3.623)

Origen specifically said it was "incorporeal" -- vs. corporeal: Origen, 225: “The ‘substance’ of the Trinity that is the beginning and cause of all things…is altogether incorporeal.” 4.376

Dionysius of Alexandria, 262: “Next, then, I may properly turn to those who divide and cut apart and destroy the Monarchy, the most sacred proclamation of the Church of God, making of it, as it were, three powers, distinct substances, and three godheads.” (Letters of Dionysius to Bishp Dionysius of Alexandria 1:1)

Gregory, the wonder-worker: “We therefore acknowledge one true God, the one First Cause, and one Son, very God of very God, possessing of nature the Father’s divinity,—that is to say, being the same in substance with the Father; and one Holy Spirit, who by nature and in truth sanctifies all…as being of the substance of God. Those who speak either of the Son or of the Holy Spirit as a creature we anathematize”

Methodius, 305 AD: “For the kingdom of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, is one, even as their substance is one and their dominion one. Whence also, with one and the same adoration, we worship the one Deity in three Persons, subsisting without beginning, uncreated, without end, and to which there is no successor. For neither will the Father ever cease to be the Father, nor again the Son to be the Son and King, nor the Holy Ghost to be what in substance and personality He is. For nothing of the Trinity will suffer diminution, either in respect of eternity, or of communion, or of sovereignty.” (Oration on the Psalms 5)

25 posted on 05/14/2008 8:04:51 AM PDT by Colofornian
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To: Tennessee Nana; sevenbak

John 20:28 (King James Version)
28 And Thomas answered and said unto him, My LORD and my God.


26 posted on 05/14/2008 8:06:42 AM PDT by colorcountry (To anger a conservative, lie to him. To anger a liberal, tell him the truth.)
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To: sevenbak; Osage Orange; greyfoxx39; colorcountry
Yeah, the Scattering of Israel. Do you know where they were scattered?

O.B. Huntington:

The inspiration of God caused men to hunt for a new continent until Columbus discovered it. Men have lost millions of dollars, and hundreds of lives to find a country beyond the North Pole; and they will yet find that country -- a warm, fruitful country, and inhabited by the ten tribes of Israel, a country divided by a river on one side of which lives the half tribe of Manasseh, which is more numerous than all the others. So said the Prophet. At the same time, he described the shape of the earth at the poles as being a rounded elongation and drew a diagram in this form; (see graphic at link) which any one can readily see will allow the sun's rays to fall so near perpendicular to the center that part of the earth may be warmed and made fruitful. He quoted scripture and proof of his theory which says that "the earth flieth upon its wings in the midst of the creations of God," and said that there was a semblance in the form of the earth that gave rise to the saying.

27 posted on 05/14/2008 8:10:10 AM PDT by P-Marlowe (LPFOKETT GAHCOEEP-w/o*)
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To: sevenbak

Isaiah 43:11: “’I, even I, am the LORD, and apart from me there is no savior.’”

Titus 2:10: “and not to steal from them, but to show that they can be fully trusted, so that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Savior attractive.”

Titus 3:4: “But when the kindness and love of God our Savior appeared,” in regard with:

Luke 2:11: “’Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.’”

Acts 20:28: “’the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.’”

Titus 2:13: “while we wait for the blessed hope-the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,”

John 4:42: “They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man [Jesus] really is the Savior of the world.’”

Titus 3:6: “whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior,”


28 posted on 05/14/2008 8:11:23 AM PDT by colorcountry (To anger a conservative, lie to him. To anger a liberal, tell him the truth.)
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To: Tennessee Nana

and the score goes to tenn nan - excellent verse


29 posted on 05/14/2008 8:17:44 AM PDT by Revelation 911 (unwashed gentile swine)
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To: colorcountry

YHEEEEEEEESSSSSSSSSSSSS

:)


30 posted on 05/14/2008 8:22:21 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: Virginia Ridgerunner

I don’t know what you mean.


31 posted on 05/14/2008 8:48:59 AM PDT by DManA
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To: Colofornian

Can you show me anywhere in the Old or New testaments where they are one in substance?

For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form... (Col. 2:9)
__________________________________________

Good verse

:)


32 posted on 05/14/2008 9:00:59 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: DManA; Grig
Sorry, my comment was not directed at you. Here's the context of it:

From Why so many LDS threads?

Down toward the bottom of the initial Vanity post, Grig writes:

Recently some of us have decided to take a more proactive approach. Rather than try to wrestle the pig into taking a bath, we are just going to hose it down. We will actively define our faith here rather than just respond to accusations.

Hence, this is why we are getting all of these LDS threads.

33 posted on 05/14/2008 9:02:47 AM PDT by Virginia Ridgerunner ("We must not forget that there is a war on and our troops are in the thick of it!"--Duncan Hunter)
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To: Virginia Ridgerunner; sevenbak; Grig

“Is this post more of the “hosing” that Grig promised us last week?”

Sevenbak posted to me that he agreed with Grig’s statement, so I’d presume so.


34 posted on 05/14/2008 9:14:24 AM PDT by FastCoyote (I am intolerant of the intolerable.)
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To: Virginia Ridgerunner

Ok, I understand. The heart of my faith is Jesus Christ and who He is. If Mormans and I can’t agree on that then we have nothing else religiously in common either.


35 posted on 05/14/2008 9:20:46 AM PDT by DManA
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To: DManA; Tennessee Nana; colorcountry

Why is it that the people who study the Bible come up with different answers to the question of the number of persons in the God Head?

and

Why are your thoughts better then the others?


36 posted on 05/14/2008 10:58:05 AM PDT by fproy2222 ( Jesus is the Christ)
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To: Tennessee Nana
In the begining, God... Genesis 1:1

The Hebrew word for God is Elohim and is PLURAL

++++++++++

What is your idea about what the beginning was the beginning of?

and

What happened before the “beginning”?

37 posted on 05/14/2008 11:05:58 AM PDT by fproy2222 ( Jesus is the Christ)
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To: maine-iac7
This is not the Jesus I worship

examples of differences???

Our GOD has only ONE physical body!

38 posted on 05/14/2008 11:29:18 AM PDT by Elsie (Heck is where people, who don't believe in Gosh, think they are not going...)
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To: fproy2222

Why is it that the people who study the Bible come up with different answers to the question of the number of persons in the God Head?
____________________________________________

There is no verse in the Bible listing the number of persons in the Godhead ...

However Christians accept the verse...

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 1 John 5:7

as the Trinity..


39 posted on 05/14/2008 11:45:39 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: fproy2222

In the begining, God... Genesis 1:1
The Hebrew word for God is Elohim and is PLURAL

++++++++++

What is your idea about what the beginning was the beginning of?

and

What happened before the “beginning”?
_________________________________________________

God said this to Moses who wrote the words down...

In the beginning, God created the Heaven and the Earth Genesis 1:1

Before the beginning...

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep Genesis 1:2a

John continued the same theme when he said..

Jhn 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Jhn 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

Jhn 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Jhn 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

Jhn 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. John 1:1-5


40 posted on 05/14/2008 11:55:58 AM PDT by Tennessee Nana
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To: Tennessee Nana
Why is it that the people who study the Bible come up with different answers to the question of the number of persons in the God Head?
____________________________________________

There is no verse in the Bible listing the number of persons in the Godhead ...

However Christians accept the verse...

For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. 1 John 5:7

as the Trinity..

++++++++++++++++++=

So, to you, both ideas are OK?

They describe the same God?

41 posted on 05/14/2008 12:25:45 PM PDT by fproy2222 ( Jesus is the Christ)
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To: Tennessee Nana
What is your idea about what the beginning was the beginning of?

and

What happened before the “beginning”?
_________________________________________________

God said this to Moses who wrote the words down...

In the beginning, God created the Heaven and the Earth Genesis 1:1

Before the beginning...

And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness [was] upon the face of the deep Genesis 1:2a

John continued the same theme when he said..

Jhn 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

Jhn 1:2 The same was in the beginning with God.

Jhn 1:3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.

Jhn 1:4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.

Jhn 1:5 And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not. John 1:1-5

++++++++++++++++++++++

So, we both believe that Christ was with God before the beginning?

42 posted on 05/14/2008 12:30:05 PM PDT by fproy2222 ( Jesus is the Christ)
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To: Tennessee Nana
In the begining, God... Genesis 1:1

The Hebrew word for God is Elohim and is PLURAL

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

Careful, someone might confuse you with a Mormon.

You forgot an important reference in Genesis 1:

Genesis 1: 26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: .

US, OUR, OUR... Plural. You are absolutely correct.

Still no "one in substance"

43 posted on 05/14/2008 2:22:41 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: Tennessee Nana
Jesus is the Word of God and was there in the begining...

Nothing was created that Jesus was not a part of...

All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. John 1:3

 

I agree with all three statemnets, 100 percent. You really are sounding LDS. I don't think that was your intent. ;-)

3 Nephi 9:15 Behold, I am Jesus Christ the Son of God. I created the heavens and the earth, and all things that in them are. I was with the Father from the beginning.

44 posted on 05/14/2008 2:30:23 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: Tennessee Nana
Jesus said

I and my Father are one. John 10:30
++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
I did an hasty photoshop job of this a couple days ago. This seems like a good time to post this.

What does is mean that Jesus and the Father are one?

No, this is not a Beast spoken of in Revelations. It's an ancient Apostle with 12 heads, 20 arms and 20 legs.

John 17:
21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:

45 posted on 05/14/2008 2:45:36 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: Zakeet
Very in-depth read on on the Book of Abraham.

Book of Abraham, Fraud or sacred scripture:

http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/FQ_Abraham.shtml

46 posted on 05/14/2008 2:53:44 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: P-Marlowe
Aren't you the guy that posted the nonsense about Joseph Smith's statement about Quakers on the Moon might be true because the Apollo Astronauts may have landed in an unpopulated section of the Moon?

Actually, two people (at least) did that, without attribution to the original "moonbat".

47 posted on 05/14/2008 3:36:16 PM PDT by Graybeard58 (Hillary/Obama or John Mccain - -easy choice for me.)
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To: Tennessee Nana
Thank you for your excellent posts.
48 posted on 05/14/2008 3:40:43 PM PDT by Graybeard58 (Hillary/Obama or John Mccain - -easy choice for me.)
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To: Colofornian
For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form... (Col. 2:9)

+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
First off, I am using the KJV, it does make a difference.

“’For in [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily.’

Not bodily form.

This is the closest anyone has gotten to actually show scripturally the doctrine of “one in substance”.

Still no sale. I know some here have interpreted this passage to mean that the Godhead—Father, Son, and Holy Ghost—are the same person, or three persons in one. However, Paul here is anxious to combat the heretical notion that Christ was not a physical being and that his bodily suffering, death, and resurrection were only fictional. In countering this, and in order to emphasize the supremacy of the Savior above man and angels, Paul teaches that the fullness of the Godhead’s glory, honor, and power is in Christ physically, or bodily—that is, nothing is lacking in the Savior that requires man to seek some other source or means of salvation.

Further, if they are “one in substance” then what happened to Christ's body after he was resurrected. If “God is a spirit, without body parts or passions”, and nothing else (we are all spirits BTW) then where is His body now. Why did he discard it after he left his disciples? He told his disciples he would come in like manner as they saw him leave. He didn't throw away his body. He was resurrected and remains so, as a Testament of His sacrifice for all men.

49 posted on 05/14/2008 4:49:35 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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To: P-Marlowe
OB Huntington again huh? He's already been discredited with his whole life long moon men fetish.

Do you think these quack quotes are a representation of LDS doctrine? Why do you post them as such?

Do I think that the crackpots that started the KKK and murdered blacks and Jews represented the beliefs of the Evangelical movement in early part of the last century? They were mostly Southern Baptists, but I don't go parading their actions and views as representing the beliefs of good Baptists in this country. If you want to know what we believe, then search our doctrines, not isolated words by a few.

50 posted on 05/14/2008 4:55:56 PM PDT by sevenbak (1 Corinthians 2:14)
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