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Posts by GarySpFc

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  • The Most Important Passage in the Whole of Scripture

    12/14/2014 6:32:46 PM PST · 115 of 116
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    Theology is the philosophy that there is a need for an “enlightened” man to interpret the word for the lowly and limited sheep.

    Wrong! Theology is not a philosophy, and so you obviously don't have a clue what you are discussing.

  • The Most Important Passage in the Whole of Scripture

    12/14/2014 2:56:38 PM PST · 113 of 116
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor; redleghunter
    I would say that most ‘theology’ students were never in fellowship.
    Theology is just the all-encompassing term for man made beliefs that are promulgated as Biblical truth.
    Believers have no need for theology, nor ‘interpretation.’
    Believers read and hear the word of God, and thereby find faith, through the work of the Holy Spirit.
    Theologians believe in their beliefs and interpretations, and have no need for the Holy Spirit.

    Is that so? I'm a theologian, and almost every theologian I know walks in the light with Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit.

  • The Most Important Passage in the Whole of Scripture

    12/14/2014 2:47:02 PM PST · 112 of 116
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor; redleghunter
    "The rabbit trails of long, rambling sentences that lead the easily distracted astray to follow the error of their own hearts, as Peter so clearly stated."

    You will not find the words in the Bible, but both Trinity and the imputation of Christ's righteousness are thematic facts found in the Word.

  • Ferguson Chief Names Darren Wilson as Cop Who Shot Michael Brown

    08/15/2014 1:56:40 PM PDT · 2 of 16
    GarySpFc to 2ndDivisionVet

    I have seen numerous reports the officer is an African-American.

  • A Sexual Revolution for Young Evangelicals? No.

    07/09/2014 10:13:13 PM PDT · 4 of 15
    GarySpFc to redleghunter


  • Christian Baptism

    06/28/2014 3:19:28 PM PDT · 13 of 13
    GarySpFc to imardmd1; redleghunter
    Not at all the thought. Your imaginative assumption is that water baptism has anything at all to do with The Father's decision to save an individual from eternal death and, on the basis alone of The Father's acceptance of the placement by Jesus, as The Eternal High Priest, of His Life-giving Incorruptible Shed Blood upon the Mercy Seat of Heaven by which alone The Father's righteous demands for the damages caused by Sin were completely satisfied, and by which The Father was unilaterally and righteously able to offer reconciliation and recommencing fellowship as with Adam to the otherwise worthless product of Adam's flesh, thus giving him/her the gift of eternal life.

    I have walked with the Lord over 40 years. I'm an old man with Parkinson's Disease, and typing is very difficult for me, and just to type and correct this short response takes a long time. I never said water baptism alone saves as you are determined to attribute to me, and we made it very clear in the article the Lord does not see water baptism as salvation by works, or a work of the flesh. That said, I will make my point and then leave you.

    They came to Bethsaida, and some people brought a blind man and begged Jesus to touch him. He took the blind man by the hand and led him outside the village. When he had spit on the man’s eyes and put his hands on him, Jesus asked, “Do you see anything?”
    He looked up and said, “I see people; they look like trees walking around." Once more Jesus put his hands on the man’s eyes. Then his eyes were opened, his sight was restored, and he saw everything clearly. NIV Mk 8:22-25

    Jesus used spit on the man's eyes to heal the man. Was this healing using spit a work of the flesh or faith working?

    If the Lord uses spit in healing, why do you think it so strange He uses the element of water in baptism? Could it be He wants to confound the wise by using one of the most common elements found on earth? He clearly has used water in the past working miracles.

  • Christian Baptism

    06/27/2014 10:30:09 AM PDT · 7 of 13
    GarySpFc to imardmd1
    When Peter first preached The Gospel and opened the Kingdom to the Jews with the keys The Lord Jesus Christ had given to him, he preached The Gospel of Christ and the necessity of repentance for Salvation followed by the command to be baptized at once. A few days later Peter had a little better understanding of The Gospel. He did not tell the hearers to be baptized, but he told them to repent and be converted (Acts 3:19). So he moved away from the preaching the act of baptism in connection with Salvation. But in the beginning he preached it because of the understanding from the fact that The Lord Jesus baptized and His disciples baptized and prior to that John baptized. There was a primitive understanding about baptism, but as The Holy Spirit revealed The Truth more clearly, the contents of the message became more precise and the act of baptism was not retained in the message of The Gospel of The Lord Jesus Christ.

    According to your position Jesus command to go into the world and make disciples, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit was an error on His part. Furthermore, we see baptism in water after Acts 3.

    Let me suggest there are two parts to one baptism, one part the sinner does by faith, and the second is completed with God giving the Holy Spirit by grace.

  • SEAL Team 6 member becomes Pentagon’s poster girl in transgender recruiting

    06/26/2014 8:12:41 PM PDT · 59 of 98
    GarySpFc to servantboy777

    I don’t believe this for a second..

  • Parenthetically Speaking (Before We Are Saved From the Wrath To Come)

    06/26/2014 4:13:20 PM PDT · 1,754 of 1,755
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    All of the NT was first written in the only language in which the apostles were sufficiently literate: Hebrew. It soon got translated to Aramaic because much of the dispersion of the house of Israel that they were commissioned to reach were in Aramaic speaking enclaves.

    Nonsense! Hebrew was replaced by Aramaic, when Israel was in BABYLON. After that time Hebrew was only used in worship services.

    Your Hebrew New Testament line has slightly less reality than a cow jumping over the moon.

  • Christian Baptism

    06/26/2014 3:59:38 PM PDT · 3 of 13
    GarySpFc to Responsibility2nd

    That said, you may fully agree with baptism being part of the conversion process, but I strongly suggest you carefully read the article. Many have told us it is one of the best articles they have read on the subject.

  • Christian Baptism

    06/26/2014 3:43:27 PM PDT · 1 of 13
  • Parenthetically Speaking (Before We Are Saved From the Wrath To Come)

    06/26/2014 3:23:44 PM PDT · 1,752 of 1,755
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    Those that did the Greek translations of the NT did it after all the apostles were dead, and used as authorities the least reliable of sources.

    Wrong, wrong, wrong. Time after time you display profound ignorance on this subject. Let's go to, and under the Bible link we find when hundreds of top Bible experts say each Book of the New Testament was written. 72 top scholars list as Mark as being written 59 to 64 AD, Matthew 62 to 69 AD, Luke 64 to 68 AD, and John 84 to 89 AD.

    Furthermore, you are dead wrong about the NT being written in Hebrew.

  • Parenthetically Speaking (Before We Are Saved From the Wrath To Come)

    06/24/2014 11:12:20 PM PDT · 1,749 of 1,755
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    You’re in the same shape as the Greek translators were, depending on unbelieving Jewish scholars for your translation.

    i've worked on two translations, and will state you are dead wrong on almost every point.

  • Parenthetically Speaking (Before We Are Saved From the Wrath To Come)

    06/24/2014 11:06:11 PM PDT · 1,748 of 1,755
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    .There was no name “Jesus” until the KJV translators invented it to hid his true name, which name they had no difficulty correctly translating for Joshua of OT fame. (the J is ‘soft’ as in a ‘y’ )

    His name is Yeshua, because he came to yoshia his people.

    Your poor knowledge of English Bible translations leaves a lot to be desired. The Geneva Bible used the name Jesus 51 years before the KJV. Furthermore, Pilate wrote Jesus in Latin, Aramaic, and Greek, and not Hebrew.

    Now be a nice little gnostic and run home.

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/14/2014 9:28:45 PM PDT · 228 of 255
    GarySpFc to CynicalBear
    We see your kind on a rather regular basis around here always knowing some better way than the apostles taught.

    It certainly sounds like Gnosticism to me. It sounds like Fabian has more faith in Roy Masters than Jesus Christ and the Apostle John. He has nothing to offer us or anyone else, and so kick the dust off your feet, let him go, and offer him silence. He has rejected Christ.

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/13/2014 9:02:52 PM PDT · 188 of 255
    GarySpFc to fabian
    Oh no..I am talking about way way back. The was plenty of very good texts excluded.

    Mr. WayWay Back, Please list them? I'm a theologian, and know quite a bit about the subject.

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/13/2014 4:24:05 PM PDT · 167 of 255
    GarySpFc to fabian
    People who have looked into it know very well that many scriptures did not make it into the bible...hello!

    I have contributed work to two major Bible translations. Yes, there are so-called scriptures which didn't make it into our translations, and for good reason. They are NOT considered inspired by the Holy Spirit.

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/13/2014 12:21:31 PM PDT · 158 of 255
    GarySpFc to fabian
    The sad thing is that your type reject the very power of the holy spirit by over emphasizing the bible. Big mistake!

    If you knew what you were talking about, then you would show Him the honor and respect due by correctly capitalizing the name of the third person of the Trinity, Holy Spirit.

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/13/2014 11:59:16 AM PDT · 156 of 255
    GarySpFc to fabian
    Are you joking? There is plenty left out of scripture..that’s why the spirit is most important!

    Oh really! The name of the spirit you have been listening to wouldn't be named IMeThinkItus would it?

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/13/2014 11:50:06 AM PDT · 155 of 255
    GarySpFc to All

    I’m amazed to see those who profess belief in Jesus Christ reject his words as history. Jesus consistently treats Old Testament historical narratives as straightforward records of fact. He refers to Abel (Luke 11:51), Noah (Matt. 24:37-39; Luke 17:26, 27), Abraham (John 8:56), the institution of circumcision (John 7:22; cf. Gen. 17:10-12; Lev. 12:3), Sodom and Gomorrah (Matt. 10:15; 11:23, 24; Luke 10:12), Lot (Luke 17:28-32), Isaac and Jacob (Matt. 8:11; Luke 13:28), manna (John 6:31, 49, 58), the snake in the desert (John 3: 14), David eating the consecrated bread (Matt. 12:3, 4; Mark 2:25, 26; Luke 6:3, 4), David as a psalm writer (Matt. 22:43; Mark 12:36; Luke 20:42), Solomon (Matt. 6:29; 12:42; Luke 11:31; 12:27), Elijah (Luke 4:25, 26), Elisha (Luke 4:27), Jonah (Matt. 12:39-41; Luke 11:29, 30, 32), and Zechariah (Luke 11:51). The last passage brings out Jesus’ sense of the unity of history and His grasp of its wide sweep. His eye surveys the whole course of history from “the creation of the world” to “this generation.” He repeatedly refers to Moses as the giver of the Law (Matt. 8:4; 19:8; Mark 1:44; 7:10; 10:5; 12:26; Luke 5:14; 20:37; John 5:46; 7:19). He frequently mentions the sufferings of the true prophets (Matt. 5:12; 13:57; 21:34-36; 23:29-37; Mark 6:4 [cf. Luke 4:24; John 4:44]; 12:2-5; Luke 6:23; 11:47-51; 13:34; 20:10-12) and comments on the popularity of the false prophets (Luke 6:26). He sets the stamp of His approval on such significant passages as Genesis 1 and 2 (Matt. 19:4, 5; Mark 10:6-8).

  • How Do we Know the Gospels are Historical?

    03/12/2014 7:33:21 PM PDT · 133 of 255
    GarySpFc to St_Thomas_Aquinas
    If the Church that wrote, copied, preserved and canonized the Bible was fallible, then the Bible could be errant.
    R.C. Sproul had the integrity to admit as much, calling the Bible a “fallible collection of infallible books.”
    It’s not a coherent position, but at least he was intellectually honest.

    Please produce the statement by R. C. Sproul that the Bible could be errant. Dr. Sproul signed the Chicago Statement on Inerrancy affirming his belief that the Bible is inerrant. The following quote is from his website.

    There is a common assumption that the Bible is “full” of errors and contradictions, and that its often-unusual people and events render it useless for today. These ideas are fueled by the teachings of scholarly critics, who seem to delight in raising questions about the Bible’s truthfulness and integrity.

    But the critics of the Bible are wrong, according to Dr. R. C. Sproul in this Crucial Questions booklet. In fact, he says, there are many solid reasons to trust the Bible. With Jesus, with the apostles and prophets, and with men of God throughout church history, Dr. Sproul affirms a high view of Scripture—that it is inspired of God and therefore inerrant and infallible.

  • Moses or Christ? Paul’s Reply To Dispensational Error

    02/27/2014 11:10:10 PM PST · 326 of 346
    GarySpFc to af_vet_1981; redleghunter
    I think he was a Jewish doctor.

    Look carefully at Col. 4:11. 14.

  • Moses or Christ? Paul’s Reply To Dispensational Error

    02/27/2014 8:17:31 PM PST · 318 of 346
    GarySpFc to redleghunter; af_vet_1981
    Indeed. Praise God the archeology of the early to mid 20th century put to shame these scriptural skeptics. Sir William Ramsay put to rest the Luke skeptics. Dr. Gary has a piece on him which I am sure he will share with us.

    The story of the ancient world is recorded by several historians of old, such as Homer, Josephus, Tacitus, Xenophon, Herodotus—called “the father of history,” and Thucydides, who is credited as being one of the most trustworthy of ancient sources. All of them suffer in comparison to the historical pinpoint accuracy of Luke.

    Luke was undeniably brilliant, possessing remarkable literary abilities and a deep knowledge of the Greek language. He was the only non-Jewish author of the Bible. Yet he wrote more of the New Testament than anyone else—28 percent. He was a physician and a scientist. He was a writer and a medical missionary. He has proved himself a historian of first rank. Here he tells us that before writing his Gospel, he did the work of an investigative journalist, recording his findings in an orderly manner based on careful investigation: “It seemed good also to me to write an orderly account for you, most excellent Theophilus, so that you may know the certainty of the things you have been taught” (

    With that in mind, remember that Luke painstakingly and confidently described the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ in his Gospel, chapters 23 and 24; and he repeatedly made reference to the Resurrection in the book of Acts.

    The brilliant Wilbur Smith said:

    "Of all the writers in the New Testament, Luke was the one who knew better than any of them, from his own medical experience, that it was utterly impossible for a dead body to come to life again by its own power. He was also a man who would have no faith in such a great doctrine as the resurrection of Christ, were it based upon a vision, a hallucination, mental excitement, or the blowing of the wind, or the rattling of a window. It was the conviction of this scientist and scholar, true Grecian and true Christian, that the Lord manifested himself to his disciples in many proofs."
    To reject the Resurrection, you have to disregard the demonstrated reliability of one of the foremost historians of the first century, a man who has been proven accurate even in the minutia of his narrative. How accurate was Luke's historical record? He tied everything into history and gave us historical anchors all along the way, both in his Gospel and Acts. His historical pegs have proven accurate even in minute points. For example, notice the way he began chapter 2: those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. (This was the first census that took place while Quirinius was governor of Syria.) And everyone went to his own town to register” (Luke 2:1–3).

    Luke did not just say that Joseph and Mary traveled to Bethlehem. He said they traveled there because of a census instituted by Caesar Augustus and that this particular census occurred while a man named Quirinius was governor of Syria. A hundred years ago, critics had a field day with that statement, finding no evidence in history to suggest that Caesar ever issued such a decree. Furthermore (critics charged) there was nothing to suggest that Quirinius was ever governor of Syria at the time prescribed by Luke. Then a series of discoveries were made. Sir William Ramsay, the Scottish archaeologist, dug up first-century documents showing that the Roman Empire conducted a regular taxpaying census every fourteen years and that this system originated in the days of Caesar Augustus. Another document was found in Egypt, an edict of G. Vibius Maximus written on papyrus, describing the procedure used in such a census, directing taxpayers to return to their ancestral towns to register. Another inscription discovered by Ramsay in Antioch showed that with brief interruptions, a man named Quirinius functioned as military governor in Syria from 12 b.c. to a.d. 16.

    Notice in the next chapter, Luke 3, how meticulously Luke nails down his historical references: “In the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar—when Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea, Herod tetrarch of Galilee, his brother Philip tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene—during the high priesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the desert” (Luke 3:1–2)

    Sound like misty legend and fabricated fable? Anything but! Luke tacks John’s ministry to the wall of history using six different pins. John the Baptist appeared when (1) Tiberius Caesar was in his fifteenth year of rule; (2) Pontius Pilate was governor of Judea; (3) Herod was tetrarch of Galilee; (4) Herod’s brother Philip was tetrarch of Iturea and Traconitis; (5) Lysanias was tetrarch of Abilene; and (6) Annas and Caiaphas were sharing the office of high priest. Most of these facts are easy to verify, but a couple of them caused problems. A hundred years ago, critics were attacking Luke’s reference to Lysanias, saying, “The only Lysanias mentioned in history was killed in 36 b.c., sixty years before John the Baptist.” But the critics were stilled when archaeologists excavated an inscription near Damascus, stating that a man named Lysanias was indeed tetrarch of Abilene at the time mentioned by Luke.
    The skeptics also made hay with Pontius Pilate. For most of modern history his name has been absent on every historical document we have from the ancient world. Critics charged that Pilate was a fabrication. But a stone I have personally seen and took a picture of was excavated in Caesarea. It has the name Pontius Pilate plainly engraved for all the world to see. He was governor of Judea during the very time given by Luke, and he was headquartered at Caesarea.

    I mentioned earlier how William Ramsay traveled to the Middle East to disprove Luke’s historical references and how, to his great surprise, he found the writings of Luke accurate in their tiniest details. This is even more remarkable when we consider that every other historian in the ancient world—men like Polybius, Quintilian, Xenophon, Josephus, and even Thucydides—did not hesitate to misrecord the facts to suit their own purposes.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/06/2014 1:55:19 PM PST · 74 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    What happened to historical evidence? How does history tell you what happened 10 billion years ago or a trillion years in the future?
    This is why I largely prefer science. Scientists (at least the good ones) don't draw massive conclusions from no evidence.

    Oh really! Science tells us inert matter through a virgin birth became living. btw, I don't see the earth as billions of years old.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/04/2014 1:48:29 PM PST · 527 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    Where did Paul, Jesus, or anyone else in Scripture DEFINE the “Tanakh” as you call it, or the Canon of the Holy Bible?

    “You have to understand that the canon was not the result of a series of contests involving church politics. The canon is rather the separation that came about because of the intuitive insight of Christian believers. They could hear the Good Shepherd in the Gospel of John; they could hear it only muffled and distorted way in the Gospel of Thomas mixed in with a lot of other things.

    “When the pronouncement was made about the canon, it merely ratified what the general sensitivity of the church had already determined. You see, the canon is a list of authoritative books more than it is an authoritative list of books. These documents didn’t derive their authority from being selected; each one was authoritative before anyone gathered them together. The early church merely listened and sensed that these were authoritative accounts.

    “For somebody now to say that the canon emerged only after councils and synods made these pronouncements would be like saying, ‘Let’s get several academies of musicians to make a pronouncement that the music of Bach and Beethoven is wonderful.’ I would say, ‘Thank you for nothing! We knew it because of sensitivity to what is good music and what is not. The same with the canon.” Dr. Bruce M. Metzger, Ph.D.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/04/2014 1:42:54 PM PST · 72 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    Where is your evidence that these are the only two options? Have you ever heard of Deism? What about a solution that is beyond human comprehension? I find it silly to think that a species only a few thousands years out of the caves has learned so much that they've narrowed the nature of an infinite cosmos down to Options A & B.

    I am very familiar with Deism, and it falls under believing in God, albeit a god who sleeps all the time, and does not control the universe. For that reason most classify Deism as a form of atheism.

    And time is relative. I find it hard to believe that something that is directly related to (or possibly "controlled" by) mass and gravity is "controlling the universe".

    I am very aware time is related to matter. God controls the universe. Matter is not eternal.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/04/2014 11:04:17 AM PST · 70 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    Can you please let the world know the English language word that describes "belief without evidence"? What is that word?

    Credulity. That many be how you see Christianity, but you are dead wrong, and I can destroy that position.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/04/2014 11:00:46 AM PST · 69 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    I don't have any faith in science, at least not in the same sense as your religious faith.

    You are missing the point, the object of your confidence is the scientific method. Regardless of which theory prevails your confidence is still the scientific method. In reality your religion is humanism.

    Scientific conclusions change all of the time, and if General Relativity or Mass/Energy Equivalence were disproven and replaced with better theories tomorrow, it wouldn't affect how I live my life one bit. In fact it would be exciting since we'd be a step closer to knowing the mechanics of the universe. There could be a massive change in the way science is conducted in the next few generations. Maybe we will ditch the current scientific method(s) for something else. That's what is great about science; it could all be wrong if we come up with a better explanation.

    Here is a quote by one of your fellow Darwinists:
    “I had motives for not wanting the world to have meaning; consequently assumed it had none, and was able without any difficulty to find satisfying reasons for this assumption…. The philosopher who finds no meaning in the world is not concerned exclusively with a problem in pure metaphysics; he is also concerned to prove there is no valid reason why he personally should not do as he wants to do…. For myself, as no doubt for most of my contemporaries, the philosophy of meaninglessness was essentially an instrument of liberation. The liberation we desired was simultaneously liberation from an certain political and economic system and liberation from a certain system of morality. We objected to the morality because it interfered with our sexual freedom..” Aldous Huxley, “Confession of a Professed Atheist,” Report: Perspective on the News, vol. 3 (June 1966), p. 19. From an article by Helming, “An Interview with God.”

    Could you say the same if they disproved Jesus' existence, or his claims?
    Of course not. You've already made up your mind, and no amount of reasonable evidence could make you conclude otherwise

    You are dead wrong. My faith in Jesus is NOT based on credulity, rather it's based on solid historical evidence. If you could prove Jesus Christ was not God, then I would have to change, but my faith is based on CERTAINITY and not the whims of changing opinions.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/04/2014 9:16:44 AM PST · 67 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    You can't possibly know this, nor does anyone else. We're only a few thousand years out of the caves, and we've achieved space travel. Imagine what we'll know in a million years.

    There are only two options:

    1) A God or gods is controlling the universe, or

    2) According to atheists and Darwinists time and chance are the only factors at work in controlling the universe.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/04/2014 8:59:15 AM PST · 524 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    So you think that the blind go to hell?

    Spiritually blind...yes.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/04/2014 8:38:09 AM PST · 65 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner
    I see the word in these discussions to be relatively useless. If you're going to be arguing with non-believers and people of other religions, they're not going to agree with you on the definition of faith, and it seems to make more sense to jump to evidence, instead of trying to convince others that faith in gravity and faith in the inerrancy of the Bible are the same thing.

    I never said they were the same thing. That said, your worldview is blinding you to something far more real than gravity. I fully realize you find that hard to believe, but it's true. The object of your faith is science, and mine is Christ. Your faith is built on empirical evidence, and mine is on historical evidence.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/03/2014 9:24:46 PM PST · 63 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner

    If there is no God, then all that exists is time and chance acting on matter. If this is true then the difference between your thoughts and mine correspond to the difference between shaking up a bottle of Mountain Dew and a bottle of Dr. Pepper. You simply fizz atheistically and I fizz theistically. This means that you do not hold to atheism because it is true , but rather because of a series of chemical reactions… … Morality, tragedy, and sorrow are equally evanescent. They are all empty sensations created by the chemical reactions of the brain, in turn created by too much pizza the night before. If there is no God, then all abstractions are chemical epiphenomena, like swamp gas over fetid water. This means that we have no reason for assigning truth and falsity to the chemical fizz we call reasoning or right and wrong to the irrational reaction we call morality. If no God, mankind is a set of bi-pedal carbon units of mostly water. And nothing else. D

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/03/2014 3:23:38 PM PST · 519 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    And where did God say only those who could actually READ His Word would be saved?

    Read John 3:19

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/03/2014 3:15:12 PM PST · 517 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    Yes, the Oral Tradition predominated in the Early Church, for most Christians. EVERY Christian Scholar worth his salt will agree with me on that point. (You are NOT a Scholar as you claimed, FALSELY, that the Jewish/Hebrew translations of the Greek, used to debate Christians, were original Hebrew and NOT translations. You can not find ANY reputable historian who agrees with you on that point.)
    Yes, there were rare pieces of Scripture, but the Bible did not exist until nearly 400 years into the Christian Era. Scripture was large, heavy, cumbersome, not at all easy to copy or transport, it was perishable and it was expensive and it was rare.
    I did not say it did not exist.

    I agree in part. The church did have the testimony of the Apostles and Prophets as witnesses to the blood of Christ during much of the First Century. Later they had the witness of the martyrs. Today, the church has the Written Word.

    Your excuse that millions didn't have the Word in the first 400 years is not going to satisfy the Lord on judgment Day. He I going to ask, "Why did you call Me a liar?" And in shock you will respond, "Lord, I never called you a liar."

    Anyone who believes in the Son of God has this testimony in his heart. Anyone who does not believe God has made him out to be a liar, because he has not believed the testimony God has given about his Son. The Holy Bible: New International Version. (1984). (1 Jn 5:10). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/03/2014 10:53:10 AM PST · 499 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    Gold is a rare metal even though a majority of the population might own a small amount of gold and even though nearly everyone has seen gold in America.
    Gold is still rare.
    The Sacred Scripture was rare in the early Church.

    May I suggest you invest in a set of the Early Church Fathers. Try reading for a change.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/03/2014 10:46:37 AM PST · 58 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner; redleghunter
    OK, so you're wiping one of the definitions of faith from the Dictionary, and making the word faith mean "belief backed up by evidence."
    OK, fine. I'll let you take that up with the Dictionary committee; I don't care.
    Can you please let the world know the English language word that describes "belief without evidence"? What is that word?

    I previously stated, "Faith is an action or a readiness to act based on the confidence one has in the object of their belief. It is primarily a verb."

    You can go to your English dictionary if you wish. However, I'm a theologian, and it's my job to paint a picture as to how God defines Biblical faith. Maybe your definition of faith does not have an object or the need for confidence in that object, which puzzles me. That said, how can one have confidence in nothing? Is that what science teaches you?

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/03/2014 7:35:24 AM PST · 55 of 77
    GarySpFc to GunRunner; redleghunter
    It seems you've already jumped past the argument of the word faith, and have gone right on to evidence, just like I have noted numerous times on this thread.
    Once again, the word faith is irrelevant, and we're back to arguing evidence.

    Nonsense! You are looking at faith as a blind leap into the dark. Let me paint a picture for you.

    At first glance the Christian faith may give the appearance of a blind leap into the dark, but in reality ii is based on evidence, HISTORICAL EVIDENCE, and one cannot come to a saving knowledge of the Christian's God, without that evidence being introduced into the picture.

    God's grace first opens our heart to His message. Then Christians present some of the evidence to the unbeliever over time, and it may be that it takes hundreds of witnesses to get their attention. Then the unbelievr has the responsibility for examing the evidence. That is how faith is built.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/03/2014 5:15:44 AM PST · 485 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    My claims about how rare Sacred Scripture copies were are not “specious” at all.
    Very few Protestant Theology Schools would disagree with me on that point. You have taken yourself down a blind alley and you can not win in this argument.

    Very few schools of theology would disagree with Alfred Edersheim, Ph.D. See Sketches of Jewish Social Life IN THE DAYS OF CHRIST.

    If Jesus never carried around the Old Testament Books, on his travels, if the Apostles never handed out flyers and tracts and copies of Old Testament writings and Christian Scripture, that alone proves my point.
    Scripture was RARE!

    Christianity didn't even exist until after Pentecost.

    Jesus quoted directly from Scripture, and the Jews knew the OT from memorization. After Pentecost it was Paul's letters, which first became important. They are for the most part very short, and we know each church would immediately copy their letter and pass it on to the next church. The first Christians used inexpensive papyri for his letters, and that is why we have very few first century manuscripts.

    The level of freedom permitted to minor variation in these papyri speaks to the view of canon in the second century. Such deviations as misreading, transpositions, and nonsense readings were allowed to stand uncorrected. This suggests that such deviations were considered minor—and the text was still flexible. This conclusion is supported by the authority of oral tradition in this period and the common practice of loose quotation by early church writers (Aland, The Significance, 117–18; Comfort, The Quest for the Original Text, 21).

    The disorganization and irregularity of the New Testament texts indicate the early Christians’ view of sacred texts. The early papyri are allowed far greater scribal alteration than later manuscript families. This may be connected to the lack of sufficient institutional structure before the early fourth century (Aland, The Significance, 64). The Greek manuscripts are written with varying levels of scribal skill. The presence of a number written in a calligraphic script—such as the Numbers—Deuteronomy manuscript—indicates that professional scribes were enlisted in Egypt for the production of some Christian codices even before the religion gained licit status (Kenyon, The Chester Beatty Biblical Papyri, ix).

    Why was the invention of the printing press so important, if you think it was so easy to copy or mass produce the written word?

    The printing press certainly helped, but your use of the word rare is overdone.

  • The Two Kinds of Faith

    02/02/2014 10:33:53 PM PST · 44 of 77
    GarySpFc to reasonisfaith; redleghunter

    Faith- defined. Faith is an action or a readiness to act based on the confidence one has in the object of their belief. It is primarily a verb.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/02/2014 10:19:51 PM PST · 484 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    I would agree with you 5 or 10 years ago, but knowledge of ancient Israel has grown considerably recently. As but one example, I cannot tell you how many times I have heard atheists like yourself rail,, “You cannot prove King David existed.” Those days are over. We now have solid evidence for his existence. Day after day atheist are getting their nose blooded by archaeologists.
  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/02/2014 9:04:43 PM PST · 479 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58; redleghunter
    What was the literacy rate? I have posted estimates in the region ranging from 1.5% to 20%

    When Jerusalem fell to the Romans in 70 AD there were 482 schools there.

    EDUCATION — the transfer of knowledge, morals, and attitudes from one person to another, and usually from one generation to the next. For the Israelites, the goal of education was to prepare people to know God and to live peacefully with one another (Luke 2:52); education did not emphasize the “three R’s.” The method of education was different, too, although by New Testament times, it had changed significantly. In the Old Testament period education was rather informal. Children were taught in the home by the parents. However, by New Testament times schools had been established to assist parents in the teaching of their children.
    God gave the responsibility of teaching to parents (Deut. 11:19). To be a parent meant to teach. Both parents were involved in the child’s education; however, the father was responsible to see that his children were properly educated (Prov. 1:8–9). A young son stayed with his mother when the father went to the fields to work. Therefore, a boy’s first significant instruction came from his mother (Prov. 31:1–9). As the boy grew, the father’s involvement in his son’s education increased, especially as they began to work together in the fields or in the father’s trade. A daughter stayed on with her mother and continued under her instruction. In the close-knit family structure of that day, as parents became grandparents they also became involved in teaching their grandchildren (Deut. 4:9; 2 Tim. 1:5; 3:14–15). A parent’s responsibility for instructing children continued until death.
    The term “father” was applied to teachers outside the family, also, and teachers often called their students “sons.” God made Joseph a “father” to the PHARAOH (Gen. 45:8), which means that the Pharaoh listened to Joseph as a pupil listens to his teacher and receives instruction from him. Throughout Proverbs the term “my son” indicates the same teacher-pupil relationship (Prov. 1:8, 10, 15; 2:1; 3:1, 11). And in the New Testament Paul spoke of Timothy as his son (1 Tim. 1:18).
    During the period between the Old and New Testaments, SYNAGOGUES and schools were established. Generally, each rabbi taught in a village school supported by the parents of the children who attended. The teacher, or rabbi, of the school helped the parents by instilling religious truths in the boys’ minds; however, the parents still were responsible for their children’s education. In choosing a rabbi as a village teacher, the parents were more concerned with his personal character than with his ability to teach. His example was more important than his teaching skills. The ideal rabbi was a married man who also was industrious and serious. He would never joke with the boys, nor would he tolerate any wrongdoing. However, it was considered important that he be a patient man. Both rabbi and parents took God as their model for proper teaching. God was the Master Teacher (Is. 30:20–21), who taught by word and example (Ps. 78:1; Deut. 8:2–3).
    Every father was expected to teach his son a trade. A Jewish proverb reads, “He who does not teach his son a useful trade teaches him to be a thief.” Usually, a son followed in his father’s occupation, with the father passing on his skills and trade secrets.
    Scholars do not agree on how many Israelites could read and write in Old Testament times. By the New Testament period, however, almost every village had its own school where reading and writing were taught to the boys. Parents sent their sons to school for the purpose of learning to read the Scriptures; they continued in school from the age of 6 or 7 until about 12 years of age. If the parents wanted their son to receive more training, he was sent to Jerusalem, where a number of notable rabbis had schools. Paul spent time there, studying under GAMALIEL (Acts 22:3), a famous rabbi. School was in session year-round, with the day beginning shortly after sunrise and continuing until about 10:00 A.M. On a hot day, the students would be dismissed for the remainder of the day. If the weather was more comfortable, classes reconvened about 3:00 P.M. for several more hours of study.
    The school consisted of one classroom; all the students studied together. The teacher sat on a low platform (Luke 4:20); the students sat at his feet (Acts 22:3). Because the students were at different learning levels, the instruction had to be individualized. While the rabbi worked with one student or group, the others busied themselves with assignments. Because the rabbi believed that if the student did not voice his lessons they would be forgotten, students spoke out loud as they read and memorized.

    Youngblood, R. F., Bruce, F. F., & Harrison, R. K., Thomas Nelson Publishers (Eds.). (1995). In Nelson’s new illustrated Bible dictionary. Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson, Inc.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/02/2014 2:50:12 PM PST · 475 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58
    Jews during the time of Jesus were educated. I cannot copy and post everything, but the following will provide everyone a glimpse of schools in Israel during the time of Christ.

    Supposing, then, a child to be so far educated at home; suppose him, also, to be there continually taught the commandments and observances, and, as the Talmud expressly states, to be encouraged to repeat the prayers aloud, so as to accustom him to it. At six years of age he would be sent to school; not to an academy, or “beth hammedrash,” which he would only attend if he proved apt and promising; far less to the class-room of a great Rabbi, or the discussions of the Sanhedrim, which marked a very advanced stage of study. We are here speaking only of primary or elementary schools, such as even in the time of our Lord were attached to every synagogue in the land. Passing over the supposed or real Biblical notices of schools, and confining our attention strictly to the period ending with the destruction of the Temple, we have first a notice in the Talmud (Bab. B. 21, b), ascribing to Ezra an ordinance, that as many schoolmasters as chose should be allowed to establish themselves in any place, and that those who had formerly been settled there might not interfere with them. In all likelihood this notice should not be taken in its literal sense, but as an indication that the encouragement of schools and of education engaged the attention of Ezra and of his successors. Of the Grecianised academies which the wicked high-priest Jason tried to introduce in Jerusalem (2 Macc. 4:12, 13) we do not speak, because they were anti-Jewish in their spirit, and that to such extent, that the Rabbis, in order to “make a hedge,” forbade all gymnastic exercises. The farther history and progress of Jewish schools are traced in the following passage of the Talmud (Bab. B. 21, a): “If any one has merit, and deserves that his name should be kept in remembrance, it is Joshua, the son of Gamaliel. Without him the law would have fallen into oblivion in Israel. For they used to rest on this saying of the law (Deut. 11:19), ‘Ye shall teach them.’ Afterwards it was ordained that masters be appointed at Jerusalem for the instruction of youth, as it is written (Isa. 2:3), ‘Out of Zion Shall go forth the law.’ But even so the remedy was not effectual, only those who had fathers being sent to school, and the rest being neglected. Hence it was arranged that Rabbis should be appointed in every district, and that lads of sixteen or seventeen years should be sent to their academies. But this institution failed, since every lad ran away if he was chastised by his master. At last Joshua the son of Gamaliel arranged, that in every province and in every town schoolmasters be appointed, who should take charge of all boys from six or seven years of age.” We may add at once, that the Joshua here spoken of was probably the high-priest of that name who flourished before the destruction of the Temple, and that unquestionably this farther organisation implied at least the existence of elementary schools at an earlier period. Every place, then, which numbered twenty-five boys of a suitable age, or, according to Maimonides, one hundred and twenty families, was bound to appoint a schoolmaster. More than twenty-five pupils or thereabouts he was not allowed to teach in a class. If there were forty, he had to employ an assistant; if fifty, the synagogue authorities appointed two teachers. This will enable us to understand the statement, no doubt greatly exaggerated, that at the destruction of Jerusalem there were no fewer than four hundred and eighty schools in the metropolis. From another passage, which ascribes the fall of the Jewish state to the neglect of the education of children, we may infer what importance popular opinion attached to it. But indeed, to the Jew, child-life was something peculiarly holy, and the duty of filling it with thoughts of God specially sacred. It almost seems as if the people generally had retained among them the echo of our Lord’s saying, that their angels continually behold the face of our Father which is in heaven. Hence the religious care connected with education. The grand object of the teacher was moral as well as intellectual training. To keep children from all intercourse with the vicious; to suppress all feelings of bitterness, even though wrong had been done to one’s parents;1 to punish all real wrong-doing; not to prefer one child to another; rather to show sin in its repulsiveness than to predict what punishment would follow, either in this or the next world, so as not to “discourage” the child—such are some of the rules laid down.1 A teacher was not even to promise a child anything which he did not mean to perform, lest its mind be familiarised with falsehood. Everything that might call up disagreeable or indelicate thoughts was to be carefully avoided. The teacher must not lose patience if his pupil understood not readily, but rather make the lesson more plain. He might, indeed, and he should, punish when necessary, and, as one of the Rabbis put it, treat the child like a young heifer whose burden was daily increased. But excessive severity was to be avoided; and we are told of one teacher who was actually dismissed from office for this reason. Where possible, try kindness; and if punishment was to be administered, let the child be beaten with a strap, but never with a rod. At ten the child began to study the Mishnah; at fifteen he must be ready for the Talmud, which would be explained to him in a more advanced academy. If after three, or at most five, years of tuition the child had not made decided progress, there was little hope of his attaining to eminence. In the study of the Bible the pupil was to proceed from the book of Leviticus to the rest of the Pentateuch, thence to the Prophets, and lastly to the Hagiographa. This regulation was in accordance with the degree of value which the Rabbis attached to these divisions of the Bible.2 In the case of advanced pupils the day was portioned out—one part being devoted to the Bible, the other two to the Mishnah and the Talmud. Every parent was also advised to have his child taught swimming. It has already been stated that in general the school was held in the synagogue. Commonly its teacher was the “chazan,” or “minister” (Luke 4:20); by which expression we are to understand not a spiritual office, but something like that of a beadle. This officer was salaried by the congregation; nor was he allowed to receive fees from his pupils, lest he should show favour to the rich. The expenses were met by voluntary and charitable contributions; and in case of deficiency the most distinguished Rabbis did not hesitate to go about and collect aid from the wealthy. The number of hours during which the junior classes were kept in school was limited. As the close air of the school-room might prove injurious during the heat of the day, lessons were intermitted between ten A.M. and three P.M. For similar reasons, only four hours were allowed for instruction between the seventeenth of Thamuz and the ninth of Ab (about July and August), and teachers were forbidden to chastise their pupils during these months. The highest honour and distinction attached to the office of a teacher, if worthily discharged. Want of knowledge or of method was regarded as sufficient cause for removing a teacher; but experience was always deemed a better qualification than mere acquirements. No teacher was employed who was not a married man. To discourage unwholesome rivalry, and to raise the general educational standard, parents were prohibited from sending their children to other than the schools of their own towns. Edersheim, A. (2003). Sketches of Jewish social life in the days of Christ (pp. 133–137). Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/02/2014 5:32:46 AM PST · 473 of 531
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor
    Great pulpit answer, but it still leaves the question of why unbelief would chain a person to such dependence on “authorities.”

    You are so far removed from the faith I don't have time for your heretical nonsense.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    02/02/2014 5:27:46 AM PST · 472 of 531
    GarySpFc to Kansas58; redleghunter
    Common sense, please.
    The population could not travel long distances, easily.

    You have mis-representated the availability of copies of the New Testament in the early church. Qumran fell to the Romans in 68 AD. It was not a part of the Christian community, and yet fragments of the LXX and various books of the New Testament were discovered there. Some of these fragments were in a script known as Zierstil, which was used in Egypt between 100 BC and 50 AD. Other NT fragments were in the Herculann script, used by the scribes from 50 AD to 80. The point being that these copies prove the New Testament was in wide circulation before 68 AD.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    01/30/2014 2:04:47 PM PST · 430 of 531
    GarySpFc to editor-surveyor; redleghunter
    This idea of “canonical” writings has no support to be found in the scriptures. It presupposes the very nicolaitan force that Yeshua so thoroughly denounced. I can see why nicolaitan cults like the catholics promote it, but it denies the concept of the agreement among the members of the body.

    The slavery of unbelief that chains the soul is not apparent, when one starts the gradual descent into outer darkness. This is in sharp contrast to the mountaintop experience and joy of those who submit their hearts to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. It is on the mountaintop that the scales fall off our eyes, and we see the liberating Truth found only in Jesus Christ.

  • Sola Scriptura – An Unbiblical Recipe for Confusion

    01/29/2014 11:11:45 PM PST · 426 of 531
    GarySpFc to redleghunter
    Paul's Letters

    Paul’s letters were written over a period of about fifteen years(51 AD to 66AD) (after he had himself been a Christian for about fifteen years), and sent to churches and individuals far removed from one another. How, then, did these thirteen come together? The short answer is that we do not know; the evidence is too slight to be certain. In some cases Paul himself ordered limited circulation (Col. 4:16). Good arguments have been advanced in support of the view that Ephesians was first written as a general circular letter for believers in Ephesus and in neighbouring towns and cities, a general letter covering more specific ones such as Colossians and Philemon (and perhaps Philippians).

    The first concrete list that has come down to us is the list of ten Pauline letters (excluding the Pastorals) compiled by Marcion (the leader of an unorthodox Christian movement about 140). Some scholars argue that this was the first time any such list was put together. But this is highly unlikely. Only a tiny fraction of written material from late antiquity has come down to us, and Marcion’s list is valuable primarily as evidence that larger, more orthodox lists were probably already circulating. It was the practice of such pseudo-Christian leaders to adapt Christian literature to their own needs. Marcion excluded all of the OT and most of the New; even of the gospels he preserved only a mutilated edition of Luke.

    Others have argued that Paul’s letters were first brought together shortly after AD 90, fifty years before Marcion. Some devoted follower of Paul, spurred on by the publication of Acts (shortly before 90, on this view), pulled the extant Pauline letters together. But it is far more likely that Acts was published much earlier, about 61 or 62, and difficult to see why the collection of at least some of Paul’s writings would have had to wait for that event anyway. There is strong evidence that several of Paul’s letters are cited in the early apostolic fathers (especially Clement of Rome; c. 96). More importantly, 2 Pet. 3:16 refers to the way Paul writes ‘in all his letters’, an expression which, though it does not necessarily embrace precisely the thirteen canonical letters that have come down to us, certainly presupposes that there is common knowledge of a circulating body of Pauline correspondence. Although the weight of contemporary scholarship favours a late date for 2 Peter, substantial reasons can be adduced for a publication date as early as 64 or 65.

  • Chamber spent $50 million on lobbying amid push for immigration reform

    01/21/2014 12:29:20 PM PST · 7 of 12
    GarySpFc to All
    I have been married to a Russian lady for 13 years. In 2006 she obtained her citizenship, and you should have seen the smile on her face. Four years later we were able to bring her daughter and grandson to America. All of this was a very difficult and expensive process, but we are thrilled at the results.

    That said, my blood boils whenever I think about the millions of Americans out of work, and now the D & R are going to give citizenship to illegals. I find it hard to think of politicians as Americans, but more like a den of snakes.

  • The Holy Trinity: Sound Doctrine or a Man-Made Tradition?

    01/19/2014 6:34:27 AM PST · 759 of 773
    GarySpFc to count-your-change

    I think it is far more accurate to label the NWT as a JW commentary.

  • Evolution is Most Certainly a Matter of Belief... and so is Christianity

    01/17/2014 12:26:46 PM PST · 153 of 156
    GarySpFc to ravenwolf
    While it is true that the majority believed we lived on a flat earth the majority was wrong and usually are.

    That is not true.

  • Evolution is Most Certainly a Matter of Belief... and so is Christianity

    01/17/2014 11:58:13 AM PST · 152 of 156
    GarySpFc to hawkaw; redleghunter
    There are also many other verses in the bible that speak to the 4 corners of the earth etc.
    Rightly or wrongly, it is talking about a flat earth.
    Having said that, it is all okay because the bible is all about faith. If there is something not quite right in it, well that is okay as you have your faith and that is fantastic.

    The Bible comes out of another culture and linguistic setting. Metaphorical imagery can mislead the reader into thinking the Bible is saying something, when it means something different. In Hebrew, as in English, one can speak of the four “corners” of the earth (Isa. 41:9; cf. Ezek. 7:2). Is the Bible saying that the world is square? Some critics say so. Yet the earth is also described as a circle or globe (Isa. 40:22). Is it possible that corners is metaphorical language that may mean the geography covered by the four “quarters” of the compass, just as it means when we say it?

    Faith is not a leap in the dark as skeptics like to suggest. Rather, faith is an action based on the confidence one has in the object of their belief.