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The Not So Secret Rapture
reformed.org ^ | W. Fred Rice

Posted on 01/14/2011 5:57:52 PM PST by topcat54

Evangelical book catalogs promote books such as Planet Earth: The Final Chapter, The Great Escape, and the Left Behind series. Bumper stickers warn us that the vehicle’s occupants may disappear at any moment. It is clear that there is a preoccupation with the idea of a secret rapture. Perhaps this has become more pronounced recently due to the expectation of a new millennium and the fears regarding potential Y2K problems. Perhaps psychologically people are especially receptive to the idea of an imminent, secret rapture at the present time. Additionally, many Christians are not aware that any other position relative to the second coming of Jesus Christ exists. Even in Reformed circles there are numerous people reading these books. Many of these people are unaware that this viewpoint conflicts with Scripture and Reformed Theology.

(Excerpt) Read more at reformed.org ...


TOPICS: Theology
KEYWORDS: crusades; endtimes; eschatology; rapture
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To: kosta50

Uhhhhhhhhhhh

the sentence structure and word choices do not consistently sound

merely

like that, imho.


2,151 posted on 01/30/2011 1:38:11 PM PST by Quix (Times are a changin' INSURE you have believed in your heart & confessed Jesus as Lord Come NtheFlesh)
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To: HarleyD; Dr. Eckleburg; Quix
You are correct that his earlier books are clearer of their own will they went out; of their own will they fell, and because their fall was foreknown, they were not predestined; they would however be predestined if they were going to return and persevere in holiness; hence, God's predestination is for many the cause of perseverance, for none the cause of falling away from Regarding Tradition

However, even in Perservering Grace, Augustine's theology is not for double-predestination. One sees this in Book II, Chapter 33
To which calling there is no man that can be said by men with any certainty of affirmation to belong, until he has departed from this world; but in this life of man, which is a state of trial upon the earth, Job 7:1 he who seems to stand must take heed lest he fall. 1 Corinthians 10:12 Since (as I have already said before) those who will not persevere are, by the most foreseeing will of God, mingled with those who will persevere, for the reason that we may learn not to mind high things, but to consent to the lowly, and may work out our own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God that works in us both to will and to do for His good pleasure. Philippians 2:12-13 We therefore will, but God works in us to will also. We therefore work, but God works in us to work also for His good pleasure.

This is profitable for us both to believe and to say—this is pious, this is true, that our confession be lowly and submissive, and that all should be given to God. Thinking, we believe; thinking, we speak; thinking, we do whatever we do; 2 Corinthians 3:5 but, in respect of what concerns the way of piety and the true worship of God, we are not sufficient to think anything as of ourselves, but our sufficiency is of God. For our heart and our thoughts are not in our own power; whence the same Ambrose who says this says also: But who is so blessed as in his heart always to rise upwards? And how can this be done without divine help? Assuredly, by no means. Finally, he says, the same Scripture affirms above, 'Blessed is the man whose help is of You; O Lord, ascent is in his heart.' Assuredly, Ambrose was not only enabled to say this by reading in the holy writings, but as of such a man is to be without doubt believed, he felt it also in his own heart.

herefore, as is said in the sacraments of believers, that we should lift up our hearts to the Lord, is God's gift; for which gift they to whom this is said are admonished by the priest after this word to give thanks to our Lord God Himself; and they answer that it is meet and right so to do. For, since our heart is not in our own power, but is lifted up by the divine help, so that it ascends and takes cognizance of those things which are above, Colossians 3:1 where Christ is sitting at the right hand of God, and, not those things that are upon the earth, to whom are thanks to be given for so great a gift as this unless to our Lord God who does this—who in so great kindness has chosen us by delivering us from the abyss of this world, and has predestinated us before the foundation of the world?

2,152 posted on 01/30/2011 1:38:30 PM PST by Cronos
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To: Alamo-Girl

AMEN! AMEN! AMEN!

THX THX.


2,153 posted on 01/30/2011 1:39:30 PM PST by Quix (Times are a changin' INSURE you have believed in your heart & confessed Jesus as Lord Come NtheFlesh)
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To: MarkBsnr; Religion Moderator; Cronos; metmom; RnMomof7; Quix; Gamecock; Alex Murphy; HossB86; ...
DR. E: "Posting Latin (without translation) is against the rules of FR."

MARK BSNR: "The hall monitor strikes again. Latin is civilized. Why are you against it?"

Neither I nor the Religion Moderator nor any FReeper who follows the rules is a "hall monitor" nor "against Latin."

Perhaps it's not willful disregard for the rules that leads you and Cronos to post excerpts without attribution (putting FR at risk of copyright infringement) and, as in the post you're referencing, to post in Latin without the translation.

Both these actions are against the rules of the FR RF.

Additionally, an "exorcism" directed at another poster (as Cronos directed at me last night and has now been removed) is against the rules.

For your benefit, here is the Religion Moderator's instruction...

RELIGION MODERATOR: "Do not ever post an exorcism as if a prayer for another Freeper. And do not ever post in a foreign language without also translating it to English."

Are you and Cronos capable of civil debate and posting within the rules of the Free Republic Religion Forum?

2,154 posted on 01/30/2011 1:40:54 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: HarleyD; Dr. Eckleburg; Quix
even in Perservering Grace, Augustine's theology is not for double-predestination. One sees this in Book II, Chapter 46
But it is said, It is by his own fault that any one deserts the faith, when he yields and consents to the temptation which is the cause of his desertion of the faith. Who denies it? But because of this, perseverance in the faith is not to be said not to be a gift of God.

2,155 posted on 01/30/2011 1:43:56 PM PST by Cronos
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To: HarleyD

Do note that at no point does Augustine consider grace to be unavoidable and incorruptible. The only times he uses it is in “On GRace and Free Will” is when he refers to weak will that is made invulnerable by God without losing it’s free will. In the same book he points out that in the case of Adam, God’s infallible foreknowledge of sin is not the same as a predestination to sin, thereby refuting double-predestination


2,156 posted on 01/30/2011 1:56:25 PM PST by Cronos
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To: kosta50; betty boop
Actually, let's see:

You asked who determines if a person should believe. Betty said that each man determines if they should or should not believe.

The statement Then you are the final and supreme authority that determines if you are "saved" or not "saved." is a non-sequitor and the statement From your response, it seems you believe that man is the ultimate god. is quite incorrect assumption.

I disagree with Betty's statement -- man chooses if they want to beleive or not. Determines has a stronger connotation than choosing. Making a choice does not imply divinity either.
2,157 posted on 01/30/2011 2:01:59 PM PST by Cronos
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To: Dr. Eckleburg; Quix
Actually, quite incorrect statement -- the the Lutheran, Anglican, Pentecostal view is NOT double-predestination.

Only the followers of Calvin believe in the idea that God pre-damns people to hell. No other Protestant philosophy believes that.

If you ask Quix -- do you believe that God preordains certain people to go to hell?
2,158 posted on 01/30/2011 2:04:43 PM PST by Cronos
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
And secondly, note that this is the Catholic faith, not the 1932 founded OPC beliefs.

we believe that
The first work of the grace of the Holy Spirit is conversion, effecting justification in accordance with Jesus' proclamation at the beginning of the Gospel: "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."Mt 4:17 Moved by grace, man turns toward God and away from sin, thus accepting forgiveness and righteousness from on high.

When God touches man's heart through the illumination of the Holy Spirit, man himself is not inactive while receiving that inspiration, since he could reject it; and yet, without God's grace, he cannot by his own free will move himself toward justice in God's sight
The Church teaches God's grace is necessary to enable man to be lifted out of sin
2,159 posted on 01/30/2011 2:06:02 PM PST by Cronos
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To: HarleyD; Cronos
I will admit there may be some writing of Augustine that state that a person must persevere or do a bunch of works. But Augustine wrote the Perseverance of the Saints late in life after he came to the realization of this truth. While he declares that he recalled all of his books to be burned, I'm sure not everything was burned. So you have to put his writings on a timeline with this being one of his last (and greatest I might add) works. It's his spiritual growth.

Augustine's work was never accepted in the Church and most tend to ignore it. However, Augustine's argument for God changing the will is overwhelming and compelling. His reference to Cyprian teaching him this truth illustrates that 1) this was a view held by senior members in the Church, and 2) it was a difficult teaching to grasp.

Thank you, Harley. AMEN!

2,160 posted on 01/30/2011 2:08:56 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
1 John 3:4 is clear
4 Everyone who sins breaks the law; in fact, sin is lawlessness. 5 But you know that he appeared so that he might take away our sins. And in him is no sin. 6 No one who lives in him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen him or known him

7 Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. The one who does what is right is righteous, just as he is righteous. 8 The one who does what is sinful is of the devil, because the devil has been sinning from the beginning. The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work. 9 No one who is born of God will continue to sin, because God’s seed remains in them; they cannot go on sinning, because they have been born of God. 10 This is how we know who the children of God are and who the children of the devil are: Anyone who does not do what is right is not God’s child, nor is anyone who does not love their brother and sister.
For a non-Calvinists (Catholic or a Protestant: Pentecostal, Methodist etc.), we believe in repentence and we believe that some can fall away into sin.

For a Calvinist, this means that they fall into the depths of despair as since they do not believe in repentence, then anyone who does not do what is right the Calvinist believe they were never really Christian
2,161 posted on 01/30/2011 2:09:44 PM PST by Cronos
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To: betty boop; kosta50; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HarleyD; Dr. Eckleburg; MarkBsnr; YHAOS; metmom; Cronos; ...

snip: Oh, the “dialogue” goes like this:

kosta50: Who determines if you should believe, God or man?
betty boop: Ultimately, I do — in response to God’s living appeal, given in four revelations....

kosta50: Then you are the final and supreme authority that determines if you are “saved” or not “saved.” From your response, it seems you believe that man is the ultimate god.

Spirited: The great apocalyptic prophet Fyodor Dostoevsky observed that free will ultimately exists for just one purpose: to either accept or reject salvation by Jesus Christ. By extension, Hell exists for those who willfully choose it.

kosta has confused the right use of free will (to accept salvation) with the fatally wrong use of free will (to reject salvation) which he quite naturally equates with “Ye shall be as God.”


2,162 posted on 01/30/2011 2:11:19 PM PST by spirited irish
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To: Cronos; HarleyD; Quix
You are correct that his earlier books are clearer

lol. "Clearer?"

Try "not yet formed." "Less mature." "Incomplete."

The later Augustine learned from not only the mistakes of the church hierarchy which was racing toward gnosticism by following Pelagius, but from his own mistakes.

May we all progress according to the same vector as Augustine.

Post tenebrux lux (From darkness to light.)

2,163 posted on 01/30/2011 2:19:00 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: Cronos

Apparently all you can do is re-post older posts of yours that have already been answered.

Running in circles won’t get you anywhere, Cronos.


2,164 posted on 01/30/2011 2:24:31 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: Cronos

Do not post excerpts without source information.


2,165 posted on 01/30/2011 2:28:56 PM PST by Religion Moderator
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To: Cronos; Quix; HarleyD; metmom; RnMomof7; Gamecock
Traditional Lutherans and Anglicans do indeed believe in double predestination.

Like the rest of the secular world, the more liberal the church, the less likely they will be to understand and embrace the doctrine of God's election.

For your education, here is an excellent article on Luther's embrace of the doctrine of double predestination...

DOUBLE OF NOTHING:
MARTIN LUTHER'S DOCTRINE OF PREDESTINATION

But as has been said dozens of times, a belief in predestination is not a requirement for salvation. The only requirement for salvation is God's grace alone through faith alone in Jesus Christ alone.

There is enormous comfort and assurance in believing the words of Christ -- "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you"

2,166 posted on 01/30/2011 2:36:28 PM PST by Dr. Eckleburg ("I don't think they want my respect; I think they want my submission." - Flemming Rose)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg; MarkBsnr; Religion Moderator; Cronos; metmom; RnMomof7; Quix; Gamecock; ...

>> “”The hall monitor strikes again. Latin is civilized. Why are you against it?” <<

.
Hard to call latin anything other than the official language of all who would negate the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
(Lieyers, occultists, Illuminists)


2,167 posted on 01/30/2011 2:48:04 PM PST by editor-surveyor (NOBAMA - 2012)
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Comment #2,168 Removed by Moderator

To: Cronos

Walter Martin’s assertioin was that . . .

God seemes to preordain some folks to Heaven. Such as John The Baptist.

He did not believe He preordained anyone to hell.

I think that’s a pretty Biblical perspective.

That sounds like the God I know.


2,169 posted on 01/30/2011 4:00:18 PM PST by Quix (Times are a changin' INSURE you have believed in your heart & confessed Jesus as Lord Come NtheFlesh)
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To: editor-surveyor

Latin is a dead language.

hmmmm.....


2,170 posted on 01/30/2011 4:07:03 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Cvengr
The Japanese would not have spent 400 years under Egyptian rule if they had the same mindset during the rule of the samurai. I really don't think that they would do the same.

Insofar as the Japanese might be associated with Shinto, Shinto practices the same.

I am not speaking of Japan under Shinto. They were subjugated by the Chinese.

2,171 posted on 01/30/2011 5:29:27 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Quix
Any male refusing to be taught by Holy Spirit’s wisdom through Angel-Gal is at least at risk of being an idiot.

This post is one of the most idiotic posts I have ever seen on FR. What in the world are you on, Quix?

2,172 posted on 01/30/2011 5:31:49 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Gamecock
Persecution of the Waldenses in France

The Waldensians were heretics, regardless of the romance that you would bring to their story. The Dominicans were charged with dealing with the Waldensians. The Jesuits were charged with dealing with the Reformers. We see which order fulfilled their duty.

2,173 posted on 01/30/2011 5:36:27 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: metmom
Do you have so little on Calvin that you have to go digging back in his family for something to use against him?

It is useful to understand a man, so as to understand why he commits such evil.

2,174 posted on 01/30/2011 5:37:48 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Alamo-Girl
That does not ensure that they [His sheep] will follow.

None of the verses that you posted say any different. There aren't any in the entire Bible, regardless of anyone's rose coloured glasses.

2,175 posted on 01/30/2011 5:42:15 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Quix
Extensive research indicates that a large brilliantly lit UFO in a somewhat typical demonstration . . . blotted out the sun and made the movements described.

Extensive research in the consumption of brandy, perhaps.

Then the Vatican system took over and easily manipulated MOST of the peasants and even elevated persons and their perspectives to the Vatican’s will on the matter—and has been doing so ever since.

And various hallucinogens.

Deceptions from the enemy’s camp are not to be misconstrued as successfully trashing the truths of God and Scripture, however.

Anyone who combines Scripture with space aliens deserves derision in copious amounts.

2,176 posted on 01/30/2011 5:45:45 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
Repent. God forgives a contrite heart.

Calvin believed that only the elite selected from before the universe was created would be saved. Therefore it does not matter what any individual does. If selected, they cannot avoid Heaven. If not selected, they cannot avoid hell. Why would you even post something like this? If your belief system were in force, then your admonition is invalid. If it is not, then it would mean something.

An interesting thought - your belief system only means something if it is not true.

2,177 posted on 01/30/2011 5:49:54 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: HarleyD
And there you go. Thanks for admitting that you don't REALLY believe in the infallibility of scripture. Few Catholics will make such an admission. It puts them at odds with early Church teaching (and teaching as late as the 1600s). But then it's not the first major doctrine the Church has changed from what was taught by the fathers. The Church has left its first love a long time ago.

That's not what I said. I said that you do not have infallible Scripture in your hands. The Early Church did. That separates them from your bunch. The early Nicene fathers never taught that the interpretation was infallible through Church teachings. They knew what was inspired and what wasn't. Jerome, Chrysostom and others must be turning over in their crypts.

Really? The Church has always taught that.

I don't have to be a Pope to read what the early church fathers wrote on the inspiration of scripture and declared at council after council. The Church plainly no longer follows the teachings of the fathers. This is a case in point. It is disingenuous for Catholics to pretend that they do.

Interesting statement. Which Councils are you referring to?

2,178 posted on 01/30/2011 5:58:18 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
Thanks, Gamecock. Everyone would benefit by reading... FOX'S BOOK OF MARTYRS

In the same fashion that one would benefit by reading Hans Christian Andersen. Only less true.

2,179 posted on 01/30/2011 6:00:50 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Cronos
Yes, their lapdogs follow them, not realising that the Calvinists would have their heads at the first sign. The OPC/PCA has dreams about reincarnating the Geneva police-state

Only with female clergy.

2,180 posted on 01/30/2011 6:01:58 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
Does that make sense to you? I doesn't to the rest of us.

That is quite probably correct.

2,181 posted on 01/30/2011 6:03:17 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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Comment #2,182 Removed by Moderator

To: editor-surveyor
. Hard to call latin anything other than the official language of all who would negate the Gospel of Jesus Christ. (Lieyers, occultists, Illuminists)

In that case what would you call Greek?

2,183 posted on 01/30/2011 6:20:22 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: MarkBsnr

>> “In that case what would you call Greek?” <<

.
The modern expression of the language of the classical period. Greek is not an evil language, like Latin.


2,184 posted on 01/30/2011 6:24:43 PM PST by editor-surveyor (NOBAMA - 2012)
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To: editor-surveyor
. The modern expression of the language of the classical period. Greek is not an evil language, like Latin.

And what makes Latin evil?

2,185 posted on 01/30/2011 6:27:56 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: betty boop; James C. Bennett; HarleyD; Dr. Eckleburg; MarkBsnr; YHAOS; metmom; Cronos; caww
But your last statement is a total non sequitur, kosta...

Hardly, betty boop. I asked you who determines if you should believe, God or man, and you answered "I do" (i.e. humans). That doesn't describe an almighty, sovereign God, but a God who depends omn human decisions. In other words, base don what you say, God is simply a provider, but you are the decider.

I will give you another chance to pull yourself our of this hole and save your face. Assuming you didn't understand my question or misspoke in haste, let me rephrase it: whose will is it that you believe, yours or God's?

2,186 posted on 01/30/2011 6:45:58 PM PST by kosta50 (Pagan prayer to Mithra: "give me over to immortal birth so that I may be born again")
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To: HarleyD; betty boop; James C. Bennett
Amen. Everyone who is called freely come to Christ

Talk about non-sequitur! And not to mention not knowing your scriptures Harley, "for many be called, but few chosen." [Mat. 20:16, KJV]*

*Of course, this appears only in KJV...in other versions God didn't write that in/s!

2,187 posted on 01/30/2011 6:57:06 PM PST by kosta50 (Pagan prayer to Mithra: "give me over to immortal birth so that I may be born again")
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
"All of them witches."

Actually, we think of them as harpies...

2,188 posted on 01/30/2011 7:06:04 PM PST by MarkBsnr (I would not believe in the Gospel if the authority of the Catholic Church did not move me to do so..)
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To: spirited irish; betty boop; James C. Bennett; Alamo-Girl; xzins; HarleyD; Dr. Eckleburg; ...
Spirited: The great apocalyptic prophet Fyodor Dostoevsky observed that free will ultimately exists for just one purpose: to either accept or reject salvation by Jesus Christ

Which is another way of saying it is up to you to be saved or lost, i..e man decides his own slavation/ perdition, not God. Dostoyevsky's view basically makes God a provider and man the ultimate decider.

This also flies in the face of Matthew 20:16 which reads "for many be called, but few chosen." [KJV, Douay-Rheims, Russian (1876) Synodal Edition]*

*Do you believe God wrote that? It doesn't appear in other God's verisons of the Bible, such as NAB, NIV, ASV, etc!)

2,189 posted on 01/30/2011 7:26:40 PM PST by kosta50 (Pagan prayer to Mithra: "give me over to immortal birth so that I may be born again")
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To: metmom; MarkBsnr; HarleyD; Alamo-Girl; betty boop; 1000 silverlings; Alex Murphy; bkaycee; ...


Therefore, all the doctrines that the Catholic church appeals to Scripture for authority of, like the papacy, and apostolic succession, the institution of the priesthood, their ability to forgive sins, etc, are all built on unreliable documents (by your argument) and therefore are no more certain that that.”

I have not been following this but saw your post, and would like to say that the charge that the manuscripts, at least originally, are not reliable has not been the historical position of Rome, though it relegates Scripture to a secondary status of authority at best, but in recent times those who impugn the integrity of the Bible have largely predominated Roman Catholic scholarship, regarding which i provide the following overview (sorry for the bold type in some paragraphs; i cannot find why right now).

there arose a dissension between the Pharisees and the Sadducees: and the multitude was divided.” (Acts 23:7)

There has been and is an ongoing divisive battle within Roman Catholicism over Bible interpretation. Very little of the Bible has been infallibly defined as the infallibility of dogmatic definitions is held to refer to the definition itself and not the arguments upon which a definitive decision may be based. The NCE explains, “The merely argumentative and justificatory statements embodied in definitive judgments, however true and authoritative they may be, are not covered by the guarantee of infallibility.” Ott states that “the infallibility of the Papal doctrinal decision extends only to the dogma as such and not to the reasons given as leading up to the dogma.” (Ludwig Ott, Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, ed. James Canon Bastible (Rockford: Tan Books and Publishers, Inc., reprinted 1974), p. 200.)

The Catholic Encyclopedia further explains that, “The Catholic commentator is bound to adhere to the interpretation of texts which the Church has defined either expressly or implicitly. The number of these texts is small, so that the commentator can easily avoid any transgression of this principle. Many more Scripture texts are indirectly defined by the definition of certain doctrines and the condemnation of certain errors. (Biblical Exegesis, http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/05692b.htm)

While the teachings of Rome certainly restrict Bible interpretation from being contrary to Roman Catholic doctrine, the Roman Catholic commentator and apologist has much liberty to use Scripture to support Catholic doctrine, as well as in interpreting areas not officially defined. Roman Catholic apologist Jimmy Akin states that “The liberty of the Scripture interpreter remains extensive. Taking due consideration of the factors that influence proper exegesis, the Catholic Bible interpreter has the liberty to adopt any interpretation of a passage that is not excluded with certainty by other passages of Scripture, by the judgment of the magisterium, by the Church Fathers, or by the analogy of faith. That is a great deal of liberty, as only a few interpretations will be excluded with certainty by any of the four factors circumscribing the interpreter’s liberty.” (emphasis mine) Of course, “excluded with certainty” is a judgment call. (http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/2001/0101bt.asp)

Catholic Answers opines that “only seven passages of Scripture have had their senses partially (not fully) defined by the extraordinary magisterium. These definitions were made by the Council of Trent…” (http://www.catholic.com/thisrock/2001/0101bt.asp)

Also, while implicit trust* (“assent of faith”) is required for official teachings of the assuredly infallible magisterium (AIM) of Rome (which does not claim to understand all things), and she has in the past (Pope Alexander IV (1254-1261) in “Sextus Decretalium”, Lib. V, c.) normally excluded lay persons from engaging in dispute, either private or public, concerning the Catholic Faith,” and discourages “her children to read or to listen to heretical controversy, or to endeavor to discover religious truths by examining both sides of the question," as “there can be no two sides to a question which for him is settled,” (John H. Stapleton, Explanation of Catholic Morals, Chapter xxiii, 1904), as it is stated the Catholic is “sure of a truth when declared by the Catholic Church as he would be if he saw Jesus Christ standing before him and heard Him declaring it with His Own Divine lips,” (Henry G. Graham, "What Faith Really Means,"1914) yet Catholics are allowed varying degrees of dissent in non-infallible teachings of the Ordinary and General magisteriums.

Thus, the condemnation of “private interpretation” (erroneously derived from 2Pt. 1:20) does not prevent one from having much liberty in employing verses to support RC doctrine, but only forbids one from interpreting it contrary to official Roman Catholic doctrine.

Furthermore, even official definitions (the infallibility of which is understood to mean more than exemption from actual error, but even exemption from the possibility of error) are open to some interpretation. As expressed by authorities such as Cardinal Dulles,

Every papal or conciliar definition or condemnation leaves a certain margin for interpretation, so that private judgment has to complete what public pronouncements left unstated... Once a thesis or treatise is censured, "theologians employ themselves in determining what precisely it is that is condemned in that thesis or treatise; and doubtless in most cases they do so with success, but that demonstration is not de fide." (Avery Cardinal Dulles, SJ, Magisterium: Teacher and Guardian of the Faith, Professor at Fordham University and Professor Emeritus at The Catholic University of America, [Sapientia Press: Naples, FL, 2007], 42-43)

A well known examples of ex cathedra statement that has required interpretation would be that of the Unam Sanctam of Pope Boniface VIII (1302), requiring submission by every human creature to the Roman Pontiff for salvation, but teachings after Vatican Two affirm salvation can be found “outside its visible confines,” for those "who believe in Christ and have been properly baptized” “are united with Christ.” (http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/p123a9p3.htm; http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19641121_lumen-gentium_en.html)

How many statements of all that has been taught is open to interpretation, as there is disagreement over how many infallible papal statements have been made, from 20 or less to many more.

How much is open to some interpretation is another issue, and while certain theologians such as Hans Kung have been disciplined (after much long-suffering) for going too far, this is rare.

In addition, while basic conformity of Catholic teaching is normally assured by the Nihil Obstat (Latin phrase meaning that 'nothing stands in the way”) and Imprimatur (from Latin, “let it be printed”) for publications dealing with faith and morals such as will be used as textbooks, or fore public prayer, Roman Catholics have complained that this has not prevented some “stamped” publications with doctrinal error from being printed, while Roman Catholic literature abounds that have not this stamp of approval.

All of this relates to a matter that is of particular concern to conservative Catholics, which is the predominantly liberal Roman Catholic Biblical scholarship since Vatican Two (1962-65). That council “had been summoned by Pope John XXIII not to create new dogmas but to update the pastoral procedures of the Church, to remove anomalies and the unnecessary accretions of many centuries, and to restore the image of the Church in the eyes of the world.” (Bernard Orchard, O.S.B. http://www.ewtn.com/library/SCRIPTUR/DEISYN.txt)

The predominate issues in regard to Biblical scholarship were and are inerrrancy and interpretive methodology. The first conflict is whether the “for the sake of our salvation” statement in the papal encyclical Dei Verbum “the books of Scripture firmly, faithfully, and without error teach that truth which God, for the sake of our salvation, wished to see confided to the Sacred Scriptures." (Vatican II DV 11) refers to all of Scripture or only those which are directly salvific in nature.

Akins explains that “Basically, there was a huge, behind-the-scenes fight at Vatican II about plenary inerrancy. The traditional Catholic teaching--which prior popes had said was infallible--is that Scripture has unrestricted inerrancy. That is to say, any time Scripture makes a factual assertion then, properly understood, it's guaranteed to be true...the present wording of Dei Verbum was worked out, and assurances were given that the formulation--which was still not entirely satisfactory--was not to be understood as excluding the unrestricted inerrancy of Scripture. But there were problems: While the final formula didn't exclude the unrestricted inerrancy of Scripture, it didn't mandate it, either. The formula could be read more than one way, with the clause about our salvation either serving to explain the purpose for which God put his truth in Scripture or limiting the scope of the truth which God inerrantly put in Scripture. (http://www.jimmyakin.org/2006/09/compendium_on_i.html)

The related and second aspect is that how the the historical-critical method of interpretation is to be used, with liberals adopting the JEDP theory, which denies Moses overall authorship of the Pentateuch, despite the Scriptural testimony, (Ex. 24:4,27; Lv. 1:1; 7:37-38; 8:36; 10:11; 14:1-2; 26:46; 27:34; Num. 4:37,45,49; 9:23; 33:2; Dt. 31:9,22; Josh. 8:32; 14:2; 20:2; 21:2,8; 22:9; 23:6; Jdg. 3:4; 1Ki. 2:3; 8:53,56; 2Ki. 14:6; 2Chr. 23:18; 33:8; Neh. 9:14; Mk.7:10; 10:3–5; 12:19,26; Lk. 5:14; 16:29–31; 20:28; 24:27, 44; Jn. 5:45–47; 7:19, 23; Acts 3:22; Rm. 10:5) and which authorship the Pontifical Biblical Commission in 1906 recognized, but which, along with the authors of the individual Gospels being truly those named by Tradition, Ratzinger seemd to allow room for discussion. (http://www.stjeromebiblicalguild.org/pbc062706.pdf; http://www.vatican.va/roman_curia/congregations/cfaith/pcb_documents/rc_con_cfaith_doc_20030510_ratzinger-comm-bible_en.html)

It is not my intent to examine this extensively, suffice to say that as a result of this controversy, Bible interpretation within Roman Catholicism can range from those who deny Old Testament stories of conquests and miracles as being actual historical events to those who presently hold to geocentrism. This degree of disparate understandings has led some evangelical apologists to contend that, at least to some degree, “The Catholic apologist must use his own private interpretation to determine what the meaning of Roman Catholic teaching is. The conservative and liberal Roman Catholic can read the same document and come to two differing opinions.”

However, the conservatives clearly have history on their side in contending against certain aspects of liberal scholarship, the weight of which partly depending on whether any degree of dissent is allowed to papal encyclicals, and Humani Generis (20) requires general submission to them. Regarding Genesis, Pope Leo XIII Arcanum Divinae Sapientiae stated, "We record what is to all known, and cannot be doubted by any, that God, on the sixth day of creation, having made man from the slime of the earth, and having breathed into his face the breath of life, gave him a companion, whom He miraculously took from the side of Adam when he was locked in sleep.

The NAB

Perhaps the most notable example of the modern liberal interpretive school is seen in the officially approved commentary in the New American Bible (NAB), the official Bible of the U.S. Conference of Bishops (who own the copyright) and for Catholics in America. EWTN says, “There is only one English text currently approved by the Church for use in the United States. This text is the one contained in the Lectionaries approved for Sundays & Feasts and for Weekdays by the USCCB and recognized by the Holy See. These Lectionaries have their American and Roman approval documents in the front. The text is that of the New American Bible with revised Psalms and New Testament (1988, 1991), with some changes mandated by the Holy See where the NAB text used so-called vertical inclusive language (e.g. avoiding male pronouns for God). Since these Lectionaries have been fully promulgated, the permission to use the Jerusalem Bible and the RSV-Catholic at Mass has been withdrawn.”

Note: while the U.S. Conference of Bishops support liberal scholarship, they are not as regards sharing their translation, forbidding any part of the NAB to be reproduced, distributed, performed or displayed in any medium, including electronic or digital, without permission in writing from the copyright owner. “ However, in America the “Fair Use” provision clearly allows the degree of purpose of what follows

Conservative Catholics themselves have criticized the NAB for many things, including numerous historical accounts in the Bible to being fables or folk tales, among other denials, including that of texts used by some to support Roman Catholic teaching, and the translation's use of gender inclusive language while not distinguishing sexual sin from general immorality.

I myself first became aware of the basic liberal bent in the NAB when reading the notes in the NAB, St. Joseph’s medium size, Catholic publishing co., copyright 1970, which states that "The Bible is God’s word and man’s word. One must understand man’s word first in order to understand the word of God." ("A Library of Books," p. 19)

It goes on to “explain”, under “Literary Genres” (p. 19) that such stories as Gn. cps. 2, (creation) 3, (the Fall) 4:1-16 (Cain and Able); 6-8, (Noah and the flood) 11 (Tower of Babel) were allegorical, and that Balaam and the donkey and the angel, were fables, while Gn. 37-50 (Joseph), 12-36 (Abraham, Issaac, Jacob), Exodus, Judges 13-16 (Samson) 1Sam. 17 (David and Goliath) are stories which are "historical at their core," while overall the author simply used "traditions" to teach a religious lesson

All of which impugns the literal historicity of the O.T. overall, even though Jesus referred to many of these and other such stories as actual historical events (Adam and Eve: Mt. 19:4; Abraham, Issac Exodus and Moses: Acts 7; Rm. 4; Heb. 11; Jonah and the fish: Mt. 12:39-41; Balaam and the donkey: 2Pt. 2:15; Jude. 1:1; Rev. 2:14)

In explaining away the Bible's attribution of Divine sanction to wars of conquest, it states,

"Think of the ‘holy wars’ of total destruction, fought by the Hebrews when they invaded Palestine. The search for meaning in those wars centuries later was inspired, but the conclusions which attributed all those atrocities to the command of God were imperfect and provisional." ("Inspiration and Revelation," p. 18)

Regarding the Gospels, it only allows that the slaughter of the innocents by King Herod, was “extremely probable,” and that people leaving Bethlehem to escape the massacre, is equally probable, but outside the historical background to this tradition, the rest is interpretation.

Its “Conditioned thought patterns” (p. 20) hermeneutic also paves the way for the specious argumentation of feminists who seek to negate the headship of the man as being due to condescension to culture, a very dangerous hermeneutic, and unwarranted when dealing with such texts as 1Cor. 11:3.

It additionally conveys such things as that Matthew placed Jesus in Egypt to convince his readers that Jesus was the real Israel, and may have only represented Jesus giving the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew, to show that Jesus was like Moses who received the law on Mount Sinai. For in "Reading the Gospels, one should distinguish historical facts from theological elaboration." ("The Gospels," e. p. 22)

It further states,

The Church was so firmly convinced that the risen Lord who is the Jesus of history lived in her, and taught through her, that she expressed her teaching in the form of Jesus’ sayings. The words are not Jesus but from the Church.”

Can we discover at least some words of Jesus that have escaped such elaboration? Bible scholars point to the very short sayings of Jesus, as for example those put together by Matthew in chapter 5, 1-12”

It also explains,

You may hear interpreters of the Bible who are literalists or fundamentalists. They explain the Bible according to the letter: Eve really ate from the apple and Jonah was miraculously kept alive in the belly of the whale. Then there are ultra-liberal scholars who qualify the whole Bible as another book of fairly tales. Catholic Bible scholars follow the sound middle of the road.

The NAB has gone through more than one revision, some of the following is taken from a Roman Catholic apologist who quotes form the 1992 version and is likewise is critical at the liberal scholarship behind it (though he elsewhere denigrated Israel as illegal occupying Palestine) .

The footnotes regarding the parting of the Red Sea informs its readers that it didn’t actually happen. Rather, the Israelites crossed over the Sea of Reeds which was “ probably a body of shallow water somewhat to the north of the present deep Red Sea.” Thus rendered, the miracle would being Pharaoh’s army drowning in shallow waters.

It likewise explains as regards to “the sons of heaven [God] having intercourse with the daughters of men,” (Gen. 6:4) “This is apparently a fragment of an old legend that had borrowed much from ancient mythology.” The NAB footnotes go on to explain the “sons of heaven” are “the celestial beings of mythology.”

The current edition will not use render “porneia” as “sexual immorality” or anything sexual in places such as 1Cor. 5:1; 6:13; 7:2; 10:8; 2Cor. 12:21; Eph. 5:3; Gal. 5:19; Col. 3:5; 1Thes. 4:3; but simply has “immorality,” even though in most cases it is in a sexual context.

It is a slippery slope when historical statements are made out to be literary devices, and Muslims have taken advantage of the NAB's liberal hermeneutic to impugn the veracity of the Bible, http://www.answering-islam.org/Responses/Shabir-Ally/nab.htm.

One of the changes i have noted between the 1970 NAB and the online version of today, is that the former has “justice” (which perhaps the social gospel Catholics preferred) over righteousness in such places as Rom 4:5,6, and that David “celebrates” the man..., while the online NAB has “But when one does not work, yet believes in the one who justifies the ungodly, his faith is credited as righteousness. So also David declares the blessedness of the person to whom God credits righteousness apart from works:”

On the other hand there are Catholics who only sanction the Douay-Rheims Bible, yet a Roman Catholic apologist criticizes them.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*In the past the cathodic church had excluded (open to interpretation) lay persons from normally engaging “in dispute, either private or public, concerning the Catholic Faith,” (Pope Alexander IV (1254-1261) in “Sextus Decretalium”, Lib. V, c.) or publicly making 'a speech or teach, thus investing himself with the dignity of a teacher,” (Quinisext Ecumenical Council, Canon 64) and her attitude has been said to “forbid her children to read or to listen to heretical controversy, or to endeavor to discover religious truths by examining both sides of the question," as “there can be no two sides to a question which for him is settled,” (John H. Stapleton, Explanation of Catholic Morals, Chapter xxiii, 1904), for it is stated that the Catholic is “sure of a truth when declared by the Catholic Church as he would be if he saw Jesus Christ standing before him and heard Him declaring it with His Own Divine lips,” (Henry G. Graham, "What Faith Really Means,"1914)

**"The signature of a bishop in your Bible assures you that opinions, expressed in footnotes and introductions, reflect what is generally accepted as sound doctrine in the Catholic tradition." NAB published by the Catholic Book Publishing Co., New York, 1986. Nihil Obstat, with the Imprimatur from the Archbishop of Washington:


2,190 posted on 01/30/2011 7:53:43 PM PST by daniel1212 ( "Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out," Acts 3:19)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg; MarkBsnr; Cronos

You may have MarkBsnr mixed up with Cronos. MarkBsnr has not had any unattributed posts pulled.


2,191 posted on 01/30/2011 7:56:09 PM PST by Religion Moderator
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To: daniel1212

Thank you for all the work on that.

(Citations noted)


2,192 posted on 01/30/2011 8:08:02 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: Dr. Eckleburg
You know

Reading the mind of another Freeper is a form of making it personal.

Discuss the issues all you want, but do not make it personal.

2,193 posted on 01/30/2011 8:11:37 PM PST by Religion Moderator
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To: Cronos; caww

Yeah, well, the thing about that reincarnation stuff that no one has been able to answer yet is: if there is no personal god, and all things go on and “karma” determines who goes on to the higher planes, then WHO IS KEEPING SCORE???


2,194 posted on 01/30/2011 8:45:58 PM PST by boatbums (God is ready to assume full responsibility for the life wholly yielded to him.)
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To: boatbums

Spoil sport.....


2,195 posted on 01/30/2011 8:48:28 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: MarkBsnr; Quix
Scripture does not show God predestining anyone to damnation. God desires all to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. 2:3-4).

This truth is acknowledged by all Orthodox, Copts, Catholics, Armenians, Assyrians, Lutherans,Anglicans, Methodists, Pentecostals.

only the followers of Calvin have the unscriptural view denying that the love of God is there for all sinners. No one goes to hell because God pre-damns him.

The ones who do, resist the Holy Spirit's work: Act 13:46; 7:51; Matt. 23:37
2,196 posted on 01/30/2011 9:42:48 PM PST by Cronos
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To: metmom
Thank you so much for sharing your insights, dear sister in Christ!
2,197 posted on 01/30/2011 9:51:01 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: kosta50

Yes, there are many religions claiming their own truth is “THE” truth...and believe they have it. So someones wrong...they cannot all be right..... Thus people do search to discover where the truth truly is. (I don’t include Islam in that as they do not have that option.)

It is difficult for those who are not Christian to understand as much as it is for Christians to explain why they have determined Christianity answers it all.

But in Christianity ‘we have Christ within us’....not out there somewhere beyond the blue. And that’s the major difference between Christianity and other religions.

Muhammed is dead....Joseph Smith is dead....etc. etc. We have a risen savior. ..... All which He said He would do He did....all which He says He is HE is.....and all which He says He will do you can, with certainty, know that He will do in the future.

It really is quite simple when you get right down to an encounter with Christ...and when it is each individuals time...they know it.


2,198 posted on 01/30/2011 9:52:38 PM PST by caww
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To: betty boop
Actions speak louder than words.

Indeed, sometimes actions speak so loudly, I can't hear a word they're saying.


2,199 posted on 01/30/2011 9:54:37 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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To: betty boop
Thank you so much for your great analysis and insights, dearest sister in Christ!
2,200 posted on 01/30/2011 9:57:04 PM PST by Alamo-Girl
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