All or nothing

Free Gift

The cry of Universalism is that all men will be saved regardless. That is, even the most hardened sinner will eventually make it into God’s new heaven and earth.

There are many scriptures which, taken alone, appear to confirm this. Jesus died once and for all. There is no doubt that He made the way clear for all men to be saved. But to use these verses alone would not do justice to the whole of the canon. It is always a mistake to rely on a context which begins with a premise. In short, we cannot ignore the passages of scripture which advocate choice.

In saying this, we are declaring that salvation is a matter of choice of the individual at some juncture or other. To simply say that Christ died for all and therefore all will be saved isn’t born out by scripture. Jesus Himself speaks of separating the wheat from the tares in one parable, where the wheat represent people planted by God and the tares people sown by the devil into the same field. The ultimate end will be separation of the wheat from the tares, with the tares cast away.

I do not know you
Then there is the parable of the ten virgins who were preparing for the marriage feast of the groom, who is the Christ. Five had oil in their lamps and were ready when he called, five had no oil, and were left behind, the groom saying, “I did not know you”. Which leads us to the statement by Jesus that there would be people who would knock on the doors of heaven and say, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?’, yet Jesus will say, “Go away! I did not know you!”

Jesus said, “Strive to enter through the narrow gate, for many, I say to you, will seek to enter and will not be able.” This clearly tells us that not all will enter the kingdom of God.

There are many other examples of this – the wheat and the chaff, the sheep and the goats, the rich man and Lazarus, the invitation to the wedding feast.

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’”
Matthew 7:21-23.

This leads us to the conclusion that, although Christ has made the way clear for people to enter, and all have been forgiven, not all will receive the free gift of salvation. This is because there is a choice involved. God offers the free pardon to all, and the  way has been made clear for all, and the cross paid for all sin, but many will reject the gospel.

Preach the gospel
Jesus said, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.”

This is confirmed by Paul.

“For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame. For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. For “whoever calls on the name of the LORD shall be saved.”

How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed? And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard? And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent?

As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace, Who bring glad tidings of good things!” But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Isaiah says, “Lord, who has believed our report?”

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
Romans 10:11-17

Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of Christ. So the way is made clear for all to come in, but it is offered as a free gift. A gift, by nature, must be received or it is merely an offer. It is not thrust or forced upon a person, or it is an obligation, not a gift. It is not earned or bought, or it is not a gift. A gift must be offered and received.

By grace through faith
That is the way of it, and the simple explanation of the doctrine. Salvation is by grace through faith. It is not something which is accredited without faith. The only way to righteousness is through faith. Faith takes the grace offered. Faith works with grace and through love to bring the gift.

Salvation also comes through repentance, that is, a complete change of direction, from our ways to His Way. As the writer to the Hebrews says, “Now the just shall live by faith; but if anyone draws back, my soul has no pleasure in him.” But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.” 

That is why, once we have received Christ, we are admonished to work out our salvation with fear and trembling. So Paul asks the question, “If the righteous one is scarcely saved, where will the ungodly and the sinner appear?”

So, yes, Christ has died once and for all, but now it is up to those He died for to accept His offer of liberty in salvation by receiving Him as Lord and Saviour. Again, Paul says, “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.””

The power of God to salvation for everyone who believes. Here, Paul qualifies it for us. Everyone who believes. The criteria, as always, is faith. We receive the gospel, we believe the gospel. This is what causes us to have righteousness accredited to us.

Righteousness accredited
Speaking of the faith of Abraham, Paul shows us, again, how righteousness comes. It is imputed, or accredited through faith in God’s Promise, or Word.

“And therefore “it was accounted to him for righteousness.”

Now it was not written for his sake alone that it was imputed to him, but also for us. It shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification.

Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ…”
Romans 4:22-25/5:1

Righteousness is imputed to us who believe on Christ Jesus. We are justified by faith. That is how salvation comes. The offer is on the table. We have to take it. We have to receive it. We receive it through faith in Jesus.

This is not works. This is faith. God did everything through Jesus He had to do to forgive us and redeem us. But He left us with the decision to accept His offer. There is so much scripture on this it is almost impossible to miss unless you fail to look at it. I have only scratched the surface.

The universalist idea that all are saved regardless is not confirmed in scripture unless you leave out several substantial doctrinal passages, which conclusively declare that we need to preach the gospel to all the world, because Christ has given His life for all the world, but that all the world must come to Him and receive His offer through faith so they can be saved.

The just shall live by faith.

Post by Steve


174 thoughts on “All or nothing

  1. Which leads us to the statement by Jesus that there would be people who would knock on the doors of heaven and say, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name?’, yet Jesus will say, “Go away! I did not know you!”

    Jesus is speaking to those who already think they are in here…not those who are constantly told they are out.

  2. Love Wins – An Orthodox View

    A comparison of the mainstream substitutionary atonement views and the Orthodox view of salvation illustrated with chairs.

    Why ALL will be saved.

  3. Great video Bones. I firmly believe that the whole Protestant notion around salvation is as wrong as it can get. It make no sense whatsoever for god to come live as one of us, die and be resurrected all to leave it up to how we feel one day when Phil Pringle gives an alter call, just to leave it up to us and our human capacity to believe a certain doctrine. No. Jesus’ life, death and resurrection is all powerful and love wins!

  4. Friends, Romans. countrymen! To enter the kingdom of heaven is to enter a STATE OF BEING defined as PEACE, JOY AND RIGHTEOUSNESS in the Holy Spirit – “I go to prepare a country (place) for you so that where I Am (at) you may be also, and so My Father and I may come and dwell with you.”

    As to “Get out of My face, I never entered you, never knew you” – Jesus talks thus to the religiously self-righteous who savor of the things of Man rather than of God, but remember Peter too suffered such a rebuke, and he is now one of the 24 elders.

    The essence of the matter is to understand that what is Spirit is Spirit and what is flesh is flesh and only the Sword of the Spirit may divide between. It is also critical to understand the difference between Sozo and Soteria, eternal and temporal salvation – the eternal principle and potential, and the present practice or practical application thereof – to wit, the promise and the delivery.

    I liked the Orthodox guy up to the point where he involves hell and eternal judgment – but then we all know and see in part, and prophesy in part. And his operation is what it is and the Pentes do their thing and it is all just the business of religion – are we Ambassadors of Christ or sales representatives of our religions?

    Only when maturity comes, do we see as face to face, whereby we know even as we are known – which is the antithesis to “Get out of my face, I never knew (entered you in the Biblical sense) you.” He is the Husband, we are the bride – the bride does not enter or push into the husband, she yields lovingly.

    The people of Romans 1 who rejected God and failed to acknowledge Him as Creator (and source) were left to their own de-vices, abandoned to their own lusts, abandoned to do what is not profitable, as they did not consider themselves worthy of acknowledging God and so God abandoned them – Ichabod. People who practice such things persistently as Paul listed in that text, were worthy of death – their value system was of death. He then goes on to say that we are inexcusable if we judge others for we revert to the same estate as they – being under judgment instead of in salvation – under the Law rather than in the kingdom.

    Hence it is only for God to judge, so the best place to find the answers is at the feet of Jesus, to whom all judgment was committed, and who judged on one but rather bore our judgment in His flesh, so that we may bear His righteousness in ours and cease from all self righteousness and needing to be as gods, knowing…but not being known…don’t ya know…

  5. So sorry to see that my last two posts didn’t make the cut.

    Not enough swearing, perhaps?

  6. “It is always a mistake to rely on a context which begins with a premise.”

    If you have no car, why open the garage?

  7. If you rely on a context, by definition that will be the premise that you use to build your view or argument.

    Your conditional salvation theory is just as much a premise as universal salvation.

  8. The Spirit is “condemned to Life” or “eternally saved” while the flesh is condemned to death.

    We are bound in the flesh and yearn to be released from the body of this death.

    The LIFE which we now live, the “No longer I which lives but Christ which lives in me Life, or the LIFE GIVING SPIRIT, gives us the heavenly quality of JOY in our life which enables us to bear with those who oppose themselves and others, to love and to pray on behalf of all men everywhere, so that we may lead a peaceable life – a life full of peace and the making of peace – blessed are the peacemakers.

    And the fruits of righteousness are sown in peace of them that make peace.

    We are not set in this place to defend the redoubts of our religion, but to represent and proclaim the Prince of Peace and His Great Salvation.

    When the Love of God flows from out of our inward parts, who cannot be touched by its gracious presence? But first the prodigals need to spend some time slopping with the hogs before He who is lifted up draws them to Himself – and how does He do this? He is the source of all life and those bound in death cannot help but be eventually drawn to LIFE. The rub is for us, are we representing the Life and the Law of Love and Liberty, or do we represent Death and the Law of Sin and Death?

  9. [Irrelevant ad hominem attacks]

    From memory it was more of a question than an attack. I don’t think it is right to change peoples published names either Steve

  10. Not on topic but some may be interested especially in Victoria annd WA (why Perth????). Pity he couldn’t come up to Queensland (God’s Country).

    Obviously a bit too intellectual for Hillsong too

    Wonder who else will be there?

    Top scholars including N.T. Wright headed to Australia in July

    Writer and popular New Testament theologian N.T. Wright will be among hundreds of scholars visiting Perth in July for the largest gathering of New Testament specialists ever to be held in the southern hemisphere.

    It will be the first time the Society for New Testament Studies has met in Australasia, and a number of local scholars have been selected to present papers alongside their international counterparts. Among them are Ridley Melbourne’s Principal Brian Rosner (formerly of Moore College, Sydney) and Theology Lecturer Mike Bird (previously of Queensland Theological College).

    Mike is currently working on a New Testament Introduction co-authored with N.T. Wright and he’s organised for N.T. Wright to spend a week in Melbourne before heading to Perth.

    N.T. Wright will speak at three public conferences in Melbourne during the week of July 16-20, the first of which will be held at Ridley, where he will speak on “Paul, Jesus, and the Mission of God’s People”, while the second conference is based on his new book: “Paul and the faithfulness of God”. He’ll then finish his visit to Melbourne with some filming and a two-day conference for the Uniting Church of Australia on “Wisdom’s Feasts” before leaving for Perth.

    N.T. Wright is a Professor of New Testament and Early Christianity at the University of St Andrews, Scotland, and was the Bishop of Durham until 2010. Not afraid to challenge the status quo, N.T. Wright has made ripples in evangelical circles in the last 20 years by questioning the reformed/traditional understanding of the relationship between salvation and the law in the Apostle Paul’s writings. This so-called “New Perspective” aims to take into account a more positive view of Jewish beliefs at the time of Christ. The traditional view is seen as oversimplifying their relationship to God, as based on keeping the law. The most outspoken critics of the New Perspective include John Piper and D.A. Carson. It is a topic which will no doubt be canvassed during Tom’s time in Melbourne.

    http://www.biblesociety.org.au/news/top-scholars-including-n-t-wright-headed-to-australia-in-july

  11. I would like someone to explain what the verses in the above article refer to, if not eternal banishment from God’s presence?

  12. THE RIVER OF FIRE
    by
    ALEXANDRE KALOMIROS

    As presented at the
    1980 ORTHODOX CONFERENCE
    sponsored by St. Nectarios American Orthodox Church
    Seattle, Washington

    A reply to the questions: (1) Is God really good? (2) Did God create hell?

    But why do men hate God? They hate Him not only because their deeds are dark while God is light, but also because they consider Him as a menace, as an imminent and eternal danger, as an adversary in court, as an opponent at law, as a public prosecutor and an eternal persecutor. To them, God is no more the almighty physician who came to save them from illness and death, but rather a cruel judge and a vengeful inquisitor.

    You see, the devil managed to make men believe that God does not really love us, that He really only loves Himself, and that He accepts us only if we behave as He wants us to behave; that He hates us if we do not behave as He ordered us to behave, and is offended by our insubordination to such a degree that we must pay for it by eternal tortures, created by Him for that purpose.

    Who can love a torturer? Even those who try hard to save themselves from the wrath of God cannot really love Him. They love only themselves, trying to escape God’s vengeance and to achieve eternal bliss by managing to please this fearsome and extremely dangerous Creator.

    Do you perceive the devil’s slander of our all loving, all kind, and absolutely good God? That is why in Greek the devil was given the name DIABOLOS, “the slanderer”.

    But what was the instrument of the devil’s slandering of God? What means did he use in order to convince humanity, in order to pervert human thought?

    He used “theology”. He first introduced a slight alteration in theology which, once it was accepted, he managed to increase more and more to the degree that Christianity became completely unrecognizable. This is what we call “Western theology”.

    Did you ever try to pinpoint what is the principal characteristic of Western theology? Well, its principal characteristic is that it considers God as the real cause of all evil.

    What is evil? Is it not the estrangement from God Who is Life? 1 Is it not death? What does Western theology teach about death? All Roman Catholics and most Protestants consider death as a punishment from God. God considered all men guilty of Adam’s sin and punished them by death, that is by cutting them away from Himself; depriving them of His live giving energy, and so killing them spiritually at first and later bodily, by some sort of spiritual starvation. Augustine interprets the passage in Genesis “If you eat of the fruit of this tree, you will die the death” as “If you eat of the fruit of this tree, I will kill you”.

    Some Protestants consider death not as a punishment but as something natural. But. is not God the creator of all natural things? So in both cases, God — for them — is the real cause of death.

    And this is true not only for the death of the body. It is equally true for the death of the soul. Do not Western theologians consider hell, the eternal spiritual death of man, as a punishment from God? And do they not consider the devil as a minister of God for the eternal punishment of men in hell?

    The “God” of the West is an offended and angry God, full of wrath for the disobedience of men, who desires in His destructive passion to torment all humanity unto eternity for their sins, unless He receives an infinite satisfaction for His offended pride.

    What is the Western dogma of salvation? Did not God kill God in order to satisfy His pride, which the Westerners euphemistically call justice? And is it not by this infinite satisfaction that He deigns to accept the salvation of some of us?

    What is salvation for Western theology? Is it not salvation from the wrath of God? 2

    Do you see, then, that Western theology teaches that our real danger and our real enemy is our Creator and God? Salvation, for Westerners, is to be saved from the hands of God!

    How can one love such a God? How can we have faith in someone we detest? Faith in its deeper essence is a product of love, therefore, it would be our desire that one who threatens us not even exist, especially when this threat is eternal.

    Even if there exists a means of escaping the eternal wrath of this omnipotent but wicked Being (the death of His Son in our stead), it would be much better if this Being did not exist. This was the most logical conclusion of the mind and of the heart of the Western peoples, because even eternal Paradise would be abhorrent with such a cruel God. Thus was atheism born, and this is why the West was its birthplace. Atheism was unknown in Eastern Christianity until Western theology was introduced there, too. Atheism is the consequence of Western theology. 3 Atheism is the denial, the negation of an evil God. Men became atheists in order to be saved from God, hiding their head and closing their eyes like an ostrich. Atheism, my brothers, is the negation of the Roman Catholic and Protestant God. Atheism is not our real enemy. The real enemy is that falsified and distorted “Christianity”.
    ___________________________________________________

    God is Truth and Light. God’s judgment is nothing else than our coming into contact with truth and light. In the day of the Great Judgment all men will appear naked before this penetrating light of truth. The “books” will be opened. What are these “books”? They are our hearts. Our hearts will be opened by the penetrating light of God, and what is in these hearts will be revealed. If in those hearts there is love for God, those hearts will rejoice seeing God’s light. If, on the contrary, there is hatred for God in those hearts, these men will suffer by receiving on their opened hearts this penetrating light of truth which they detested all their life.

    So that which will differentiate between one man and another will not be a decision of God, a reward or a punishment from Him, but that which was in each one’s heart; what was there during all our life will be revealed in the Day of Judgment. If there is a reward and a punishment in this revelation — and there really is — it does not come from God but from the love or hate which reigns in our heart. Love has bliss in it, hatred has despair, bitterness, grief, affliction, wickedness, agitation, confusion, darkness, and all the other interior conditions which compose hell (I Cor. 4:6).

    The Light of Truth, God’s Energy, God’s grace which will fall on men unhindered by corrupt conditions in the Day of Judgment, will be the same to all men. There will be no distinction whatever. All the difference lies in those who receive, not in Him Who gives. The sun shines on healthy and diseased eyes alike, without any distinction. Healthy eyes enjoy light and because of it see clearly the beauty which surrounds them. Diseased eyes feel pain, they hurt, suffer, and want to hide from this same light which brings such great happiness to those who have healthy eyes.

    But alas, there is no longer any possibility of escaping God’s light. During this life there was. In the New Creation of the Resurrection, God will be everywhere and in everything. His light and love will embrace all. There will be no place hidden from God, as was the case during our corrupt life in the kingdom of the prince of this world. 41 The devil’s kingdom will be despoiled by the Common Resurrection and God will take possession again of His creation. 42 Love will enrobe everything with its sacred Fire which will flow like a river from the throne of God and will irrigate paradise. But this same river of Love — for those who have hate in their hearts — will suffocate and burn.

    “For our God is a consuming fire”, (Heb. 12:29). The very fire which purifies gold, also consumes wood. Precious metals shine in it like the sun, rubbish burns with black smoke. All are in the same fire of Love. Some shine and others become black and dark. In the same furnace steel shines like the sun, whereas clay turns dark and is hardened like stone. The difference is in man, not in God.

    The difference is conditioned by the free choice of man, which God respects absolutely. God’s judgment is the revelation of the reality which is in man.
    ___________________________________________________

    I think that by now we have reached the point of understanding correctly what eternal hell and eternal paradise really are, and who is in reality responsible for the difference.

    In the icon of the Last Judgment we see Our Lord Jesus Christ seated on a throne. On His right we see His friends, the blessed men and women who lived by His love. On His left we see His enemies, all those who passed their life hating Him, even if they appeared to be pious and reverent. And there, in the midst of the two, springing from Christ’s throne, we see a river of fire coming toward us. What is this river of fire? Is it an instrument of torture? Is it an energy of vengeance coming out from God in order to vanquish His enemies?

    No, nothing of the sort. This river of fire is the river which “came out from Eden to water the paradise” of old (Gen. 2:10). It is the river of the grace of God which irrigated God’s saints from the beginning. In a word, it is the out-pouring of God’s love for His creatures. Love is fire. Anyone who loves knows this. God is Love, so God is Fire. And fire consumes all those who are not fire themselves, and renders bright and shining all those who are fire themselves (Heb. 12:29).

    God many times appeared as fire: To Abraham, to Moses in the burning bush, to the people of Israel showing them the way in the desert as a column of fire by night and as a shining cloud by day when He covered the tabernacle with His glory (Exod. 40:28, 32), and when He rained fire on the summit of Mount Sinai. God was revealed as fire on the mountain of Transfiguration, and He said that He came “to put fire upon the earth” (Luke 12:49), that is to say, love, because as Saint John of the Ladder says, “Love is the source of fire” (Step 30, 18).

    The Greek writer, Fotis Kontoglou said somewhere that “Faith is fire, and gives warmth to the heart. The Holy Spirit came down upon the heads of the apostles in the form of tongues of fire. The two disciples, when the Lord was revealed to them, said ‘Did not our heart burn within us, while He talked with us in the way?’ Christ compares faith to a ‘burning candle.’ Saint John the Forerunner said in his sermons that Christ will baptize men ‘in the Holy Spirit and fire.’ And truly, the Lord said, ‘I am come to send fire on the earth and what will I if it be already kindled? Well, the most tangible characteristic of faith is warmth; this is why they speak about ‘warm faith,’ or ‘faith provoking warmth.’ And even as the distinctive mark of faith is warmth, the sure mark of unbelief is coldness.

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

    “Do not deceive yourself,” says Saint Symeon the New Theologian, “God is fire and when He came into the world, and became man, He sent fire on the earth, as He Himself says; this fire turns about searching to find material — that is a disposition and an intention that is good — to fall into and to kindle; and for those in whom this fire will ignite, it becomes a great flame, which reaches Heaven…. this flame at first purifies us from the pollution of passions and then it becomes in us food and drink and light and joy, and renders us light ourselves because we participate in His light” (Discourse 78).

    God is a loving fire, and He is a loving fire for all: good or bad. There is, however, a great difference in the way people receive this loving fire of God. Saint Basil says that “the sword of fire was placed at the gate of paradise to guard the approach to the tree of life; it was terrible and burning toward infidels, but kindly accessible toward the faithful, bringing to them the light of day.” 44 The same loving fire brings the day to those who respond to love with love, and burns those who respond to love with hatred.

    Paradise and hell are one and the same River of God, a loving fire which embraces and covers all with the same beneficial will, without any difference or discrimination. The same vivifying water is life eternal for the faithful and death eternal for the infidels; for the first it is their element of life, for the second it is the instrument of their eternal suffocation; paradise for the one is hell for the other. Do not consider this strange. The son who loves his father will feel happy in his father’s arms, but if he does not love him, his father’s loving embrace will be a torment to him. This also is why when we love the man who hates us, it is likened to pouring lighted coals and hot embers on his head.

    “I say,” writes Saint Isaac the Syrian, “that those who are suffering in hell, are suffering in being scourged by love…. It is totally false to think that the sinners in hell are deprived of God’s love. Love is a child of the knowledge of truth, and is unquestionably given commonly to all. But love’s power acts in two ways: it torments sinners, while at the same time it delights those who have lived in accord with it” (Homily 84).

    God is love. If we really believe this truth, we know that God never hates, never punishes, never takes vengeance. As Abba Ammonas says, “Love never hates anyone, never reproves anyone, never condemns anyone, never grieves anyone, never abhors anyone, neither faithful nor infidel nor stranger nor sinner nor fornicator, nor anyone impure, but instead it is precisely sinners, and weak and negligent souls that it loves more, and feels pain for them and grieves and laments, and it feels sympathy for the wicked and sinners, more than for the good, imitating Christ Who called sinners, and ate and drank with them. For this reason, showing what real love is, He taught saying, ‘Become good and merciful like your Father in Heaven,’ and as He rains on bad and good and makes the sun to rise on just and unjust alike, so also is the one who has real love, and has compassion, and prays for all.” 45

    http://www.orthodoxpress.org/parish/river_of_fire.htm

  13. I’ll give him 8 out of 10. The first part of the discourse was excellent, the second part I have issues with but for the most part this is so much closer to the Truth than what is peddled in the West, and I would encourage folk to seek out a good Aramaic Translation of the scriptures – I recommend Victor Alexander at http://www.v-a.com.

    Back about 2001, I heard the Spirit of God say to me that the revival of Truth would come out of the more Orthodox Churches, and that that Western Christendom was Babylon and did not know it, and were actually preventing Jesus rather than representing Him, and that they had a form of Godliness which prevents the Power (Jesus) becoming manifest in the flesh.

    It is all about Jesus being made manifest in the flesh, and the antichrist spirit which prevents the same – and this author absolutely nails it in the first half of this treatise – atheism and unbelief is the product of western theology – and the aim too methinks – it was leavened to be that way.

    But let’s not forget that Jesus rebuked His own disciples (all of whom were Israelites-Jews) for their unbelief which was largely the product of their Pharisaic conditioning, as it still is to this day.

    Maimonides and Francis Bacon, along with lesser luminaries, meddled with the scriptures and have ensured the delusion of the bulk of Western Xians, thus setting the scene for the appearing of the man of sin, and of course, for the Son of Man.

    I once asked Jesus “Why the Cross, why you?” His answer, “It had to be Me, nor one else could do it, Creation is MY RESPONSIBILITY – only I could do it.” The buck stops with Jesus, who will make all to stand before Him – for He is our uprightness. If I be lifted up, I will draw all men to Myself – thus He indicated what manner of death He would die.

    The question is, did He suffer so that I would not have to or so that I should be able to sustain like suffering too? For if they hate the Master, what will they do to the servants?

    25. “Whoever pamper themselves,
    go to oblivion;
    And whoever make themselves unpopular among the people,
    these [are the ones who] await the everlasting Life.

    Our God is a Consuming and a Consummating Fire and He shall try every man’s works of what they be made – Gold, Silver, Precious Gems – Faith, Hope and Love. 0(:->)

  14. Glittergirl – all that glitters is not gold – the word eternal is more correctly translated “age-lasting” or “eon” – or an indeterminate period of time. In Genesis in the Aramaic its says in the first eon of time, etc, instead of day. I suggest a lengthy and arduous study of the scriptures as to the meanings of certain words which have crept, or slithered, into the canon. Start with Easter from the Kink James perVersion – the tip of a very big iceberg. It makes me laugh that Western Xians regard the Kink James as the third or fourth person of the Godhead…or as my wife says, “The best thing most Xians could do is put their Bibles down and learn to hear from God instead of trying to figure Him out.”

    He who comes to God must believe THAT HE IS, not what, who or how, but THAT HE IS. He will fill in the details, or as this man so saliently declares:

    “God is Truth and Light. God’s judgment is nothing else than our coming into contact with truth and light.” Aa-meen.

  15. Hebrews 12
    5 And you have forgotten the exhortation which speaks to you as to sons: “My son, do not despise the chastening of the LORD, Nor be discouraged when you are rebuked by Him;
    6 For whom the LORD loves He chastens, And scourges every son whom He receives.”
    7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten?
    8 But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons.

    Love does and will chasten. Love does not accept sin as if it is nothing. Love corrects sin and therefore sinners. If sinners do not repent they die in their sin. If they die in their sin their life is forfeit. Jesus gave stern warning of this to the Jewish lawyers in the treasury.

    John 8
    21 Then Jesus said to them again, “I am going away, and you will seek Me, and will die in your sin. Where I go you cannot come.”
    22 So the Jews said, “Will He kill Himself, because He says, ‘Where I go you cannot come’?”
    23 And He said to them, “You are from beneath; I am from above. You are of this world; I am not of this world.
    24 “Therefore I said to you that you will die in your sins; for if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.”
    25 Then they said to Him, “Who are You?” And Jesus said to them, “Just what I have been saying to you from the beginning.
    26 “I have many things to say and to judge concerning you, but He who sent Me is true; and I speak to the world those things which I heard from Him.”
    27 They did not understand that He spoke to them of the Father.

    So, yes, Jesus did judge men on earth, and he made it clear they would not be with Him where He was going. That is plainly an exclusion based on their refusal to believe.

    God is both inclusive and exclusive. All are included in His plans for redemption, but those who reject His offer of the free gift of salvation are excluded.

    He is not the one who excludes. Men exclude themselves by their disobedience and their reckless refusal to accept Christ as Lord, or to believe in the work of the cross, or attempt to reach heaven by their own means, works or penance.

    The concept that God is evil because He refuses entry to unrepentant sinners is a blatant misreading and misrepresentation of scripture. It is saying that it is God’s fault that men refuse the free offer. It is saying that God is responsible for being rejected. It is saying that it is God’s wickedness which causes men to turn down the opportunity for salvation.

    How can this be? God has doe everything eternally and legally possible to make the way clear for all men to come to Him. He has given everything, His own Son, to bring forgiveness to the world. he has poured out His love and grace and mercy upon the whole age o men throughout the Time of the Gentiles and remains long-suffering towards us all. What more could He do?

    Jesus’ own words: “God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

    Yet you say He is punishing men. No, they are receiving to themselves the payment for the sin they determined in their own hearts to retain as they rejected the opportunity for salvation and righteousness by remaining aloof in their stubborn pride from the message of the gospel.

    That is their own fault. God is faultless. God is holy. God is innocent of all claims on His actions. He is ultimately and totally just.

    Paradise and hell have never and never will be the same place. Paradise is with God. Hell, represented by Hades, will be cast into the Lake of Fire, which is nothing like Paradise. Otherwise you are claiming the devil will be in Paradise for eternity. I think not.

    If you are a son of God you will be corrected at some juncture in your life. You will be chastised. If you are not you are illegitimate, you are not a real son, and you are not loved. It is the chastening of the Lord which keeps us in our lifetime on our walk with Him as He guides us into salvation.

  16. And you say that the consuming fire of God is the light which will shine on them at the judgment, but Jesus told us that the light is with men now.

    Jesus is the light of the world, who shone the light when He walked the earth, and He shines today through the Church, whom He called the light of the world, the real Church, the real living Body of Christ, the gospel preaching, cross-redeemed, Word-teaching, Spirit-filled, miracle working, Holy Ghost led Church of the Living God.

    The light is in the here and now. The opportunity to repent is now. The day of our salvation is called Today!

    Trying to pull the wool over people’s eyes by claiming that salvation will take place in heaven when the light of God’s consuming fire judgment is shone on hem is total heresy.

    The Light is now. Salvation is Today.

    The Light shines now, and if people reject the light and prefer to remain in their darkness they condemn themselves. Jesus doesn’t condemn them. Their rejection of Light condemns them. Now. Today.

    As Jesus said:

    This is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

    He who seeks the truth comes to the Light. Today!

    “Today, if you will hear His voice, Do not harden your hearts as in the rebellion.”

    And…

    “Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; but exhort one another daily, while it is called “Today,” lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin.”

    And…

    Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.

  17. So God created most of humanity to condemn it to Hell. A place where God Himself eternally tortures the lost souls because there is no place He is not!.

    Nah.

    There’s something wrong with your god.

  18. And by these predictable remarks, Bones, you demonstrate that your folly is so simplistic it takes an unbeliever to come up with it.

    Your theology, if you actually believe the Greek Orthodox explanation you cut’n’paste above, is so full of theological holes it could be used as a colander.

    My God is a Consuming Fire. That is true. But not in the way you are attempting to portray.

    God created no one for condemnation.

    We did it all by ourselves.

    That is why He sent Christ.

    One day, I really hope, you’ll see it.

    What you have done is rejected Christ’s own words to appease your own unbelief. Never a good idea.

  19. It never really made a hell of a lot of sense when you think about it.

    God sent God to suffer and die to save God’s creation from God’s wrath and condemnation.

  20. By the way. The post is on the truth that Christ has died once and for all, but not all will receive the free offer of grace and salvation.

    It is not talking about hell. I didn’t think you believed in hell. I thought the words were Hades, Gehenna and Tartarus, none of which will exist after the judgment.

    Never mind. I guess the cut’n’paste suited your theology for a while.

  21. Compare this trans of Hebrews with the “scourging” version offered above. And I would encourage you Steve to get to know some believing Jews and ask them what dying in your sin is all about and the consequences thereof. Your attempts to validate your belief in hell have the appearance of sound exegesis to the ignorant who know only the Law of Condemnation and know not the Life Giver. We are all guilty of sin – it is not we who sin but sin which sins, just as it is no longer we who live but Christ which lives in us, once we have that revelation that it is not really all about us, and yet to God it is. It is not I which sins but sin which works in me. Death dies, Life lives. The second death is the death of death.

    1. Because of that also, we have all these witnesses around us, like clouds circling us above, that we are relieved of our burdens, also of those sins that we are guilty of (that which please us) in every season, as we preach the hope [of the Kingdom] and run the course of the struggle that has been vouchsafed us,
    2. We gaze upon Eashoa who was the beginning and the fulfillment of faith, who instead of the joy that He possessed, He proffered the Crucifix, conquered its humiliation and sat at the right of the throne of God.
    3. Look to what extent He proffered Himself on behalf of sinners, those who were their own stumbling block, that you may not stop and give up (finish yourself and unravel your soul).

    4. Neither have you lost any blood (reached blood) in your struggle against sin yet.
    5. Nor have you lost the enlightenment (civilization) that He revealed to you as Children,

    “Son, neither lose track of the Lord’s enlightenment,
    nor let your soul quake when your loyalty strays from Him.
    6. “For the Lord is merciful to whom He sanctifies (approves),
    And is generous to those children whom He has willed.”

    7. Teach, therefore, this enlightenment because God bequeathed for you this assistance as Children, for who are the children that are not approved by their father?
    8. And if you are devoid of this enlightenment, through which all human beings may be sanctified, you are better off with strangers than with children.
    Ar. idiomatic construction: “May you have strangers and not children.” In other words, “You may as well not have children.”
    9. And if our parents in the flesh were approving of us and we treated them with deference, how much more ought we to be obliged through submission to our Spiritual parentage and thus live eternally?
    10. For they approved us for a short season according to their wishes; however, God [sanctifies] us for our own good (to assist us), that we may partake in His holiness.
    11. Every form of enlightenment in its season is not proffered as joy, except as a sort of quiescence (weakness). Later, however, it produces fruit of peace and righteousness for those who were trained in it.

    12. Because of that let your hands find solutions and let your knees commence forthrightly,
    13. And set your feet on the straight course, so as the handicapped member may not stumble, except become healed.
    14. Pursue peace with every human being, and holiness without which no human being will see our Lord.
    15. And take heed that no human being should find you lacking in God’s grace, lest the root of bitterness should arise and consume you, by which many are made decrepit.

    Selah and shalom.

  22. Yes, yes, Bones. I remember now why I couldn’t be bothered discussing issues with you. You’re so filled with cynicism against God it actually hurts to watch you curse Him so much.

    So, we’re done! Again!

  23. Ian, if anyone actually could make head or tail of what you are saying they would let you know you are on such a theological tangent no one could actually set you back on the right course.

    Dying in your sin means exactly that. You sin and refuse point blank to receive the forgiveness God offers by accepting Jesus as Lord. That is exactly what the scripture says above and there is no question about and no missing what Jesus was saying.

    Salvation is by God’s grace through faith – believing in Jesus.

    The sin which condemns is the sin of unbelief.

    If you don’t believe you will die in your sin.

    If you die in your sin you will not go where Jesus is.

    The time to believe is Today.

    Now is the day of salvation.

    Very simple.

    Even you must be able to understand such a basic gospel.

  24. No, Bines, you passed sentence on yourself. I just chose to move on and not get bogged down in your unbelief.

  25. “It is not talking about hell. I didn’t think you believed in hell. I thought the words were Hades, Gehenna and Tartarus, none of which will exist after the judgment.”

    Well if ALL aren’t saved where do the rest go?

    I see a lot of Evangelicals leaning towards annihilation because they know the idea of a god as a cosmic torturer is anathema to the Christ.

    Hell isn’t a place. It doesn’t exist as such. There is no pit of fire. It is actually a state.

    btw what are we saved from?

  26. 1 John 5
    10 He who believes in the Son of God has the witness in himself; he who does not believe God has made Him a liar, because he has not believed the testimony that God has given of His Son.
    11 And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son.
    12 He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
    13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

    The life is in the Son. If you don’t receive the Son you have no life.

    It’s too late when you die. It happens while you are alive.

    What Bones proposes makes God a liar.

    God is not a man that He should lie.

    If you don’t believe you make the Son a liar because you don’t believe the testimony that God has given of His Son.

    The life is in His Son. If you don;t have His Son, you don;t have life. If you die without the Son you will not have the Son at the judgment.

    It’s all pretty plain.

  27. “Yes, yes, Bones. I remember now why I couldn’t be bothered discussing issues with you. You’re so filled with cynicism against God it actually hurts to watch you curse Him so much.”

    Actually it’s your misrepresentation of an idol. There are so many holes and inconsistencies in the vindictive god who demands sacrifice and obedience or else, that atheism has flourished.

    god loves you so much he will send you to hell.

    btw people are cast into the lake of fire. They don’t jump in of their own volition.

  28. Well, you know where they go, or you would if you could actually believe the scripture which tells you, but we’ve been through this a hundred times before.

    I don’t really think it is relevant to truth what a growing number of evangelicals think because their sentimentality interfere with what Hod has revealed, when God has told us exactly what will take place, exactly how to be saved, and exactly how to avoid separation.

    it should be a non-issue. Simply receive Christ through faith in Him.

    What could be simpler than that?

    it takes a real sceptic to make such a mess of God’s Word.

    We are justified by faith in Christ in the here and now, Today, not by some searchlight in the after-life.

  29. No, Bones, as I said earlier, it is your unbelief and rejection of the Word which is calling God vindictive. That is why it hurts to watch you curse Him this way.

  30. The idea that people condemn themselves to the place hell is utterly ridiculous. Most of humanity has never even heard of the gospel yet apparently condemn themselves because of it.

    Where’s the mercy and justice in that?

    Steve’s legalistic god (for that is what it is – the torah being replaced with the law of affirmation) has no mercy nor justice.

  31. And the wicked claim that atheism is flourishing because we preach the truth is such a lie from the devil. It is a fiery dart aimed at the Shield of faith to attempt to intimidate true believers form continuing to preach the truth.

    Again, in your rejection of truth, you make the erroneous claim that God loves people so much he sends them to hell. What an enemy of Christ you are becoming.

    God loves people so much he sent his only begotten Son, to save them, not condemn them.

    Which pat of Jesus’ explanation that men are condemning themselves did you not understand?

    Gd is not doing anything wrong.

    It is sin.

    It is those who reject Him.

    It is those who choose darkness over light.

  32. Jesus,
    “This is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in God.”

    Bones,
    The idea that people condemn themselves to the place hell is utterly ridiculous.

    Who should we believe?

  33. “That is their own fault. God is faultless. God is holy. God is innocent of all claims on His actions. He is ultimately and totally just.”

    Steve, that is a religious cop-out worthy of Ray Comfort – sorry mate but it does not make a lot of sense to me, nor offer any abiding comfort…

    Bones, you said “It never really made a hell of a lot of sense when you think about it.

    God sent God to suffer and die to save God’s creation from God’s wrath and condemnation.”

    Ditto – could not work that out – God paying the price to God.

    But if it is GOD BEING THE CONSUMMATION – in other words not holding sin against us as we had no say in our Genesis nor in our sinfulness nor in our righteousness that might make more sense, yes?

    So, what is the whole purpose of it all? Why did God say to Adam “DON’T EAT” (who was still ONE at the juncture)? Any idiot knows “Don’t say don’t!” Say what you want, not what you don’t want – it was a set up for a shake down – and you have to trust that God actually knows what he is doing and where He is going with all of this.

    I asked Him once to show me the meaning of Creation – what is it all about God? He showed me something like unto a giant puffball, and it exploded in every direction – like the Big Bang – and multiplied billions upon billions of spores of life began to expand and disperse, and then to come back together, to coalesce into One again. He showed me how he is reproducing Himself, both increasing and completing at the same time, and how we all came from Him and return to Him.

    Where the problem arises for many Xians is discerning what is Spirit and what is flesh, what comes from above, from the Father of Lights, and what comes from beneath, from the father of lies, and is earthly, sensual and devilish. What is of the earth returns to it, what is of God returns to God – dust to dust, and Spirit to Spirit. Henceforth know we NO MAN after the DUST, after the flesh, but rather, after the Spirit.

  34. “I don’t really think it is relevant to truth what a growing number of evangelicals think because their sentimentality interfere with what Hod has revealed,”

    It’s not sentimentality.

    Evangelicals can see that there are inconsistencies in the whole Jesus sending most of His own creation to burn forever as being totally foreign to the person of Jesus.

    They can see that people are more moral than that god.

    I couldn’t torture my enemies forever.

    Maybe you can.

    Your god can.

  35. Same ol’ same ol’, Bones.

    Can’t believe the Word so hates on God for telling us the truth then wonders why he thinks he’s banging his head against a brick wall, when all he’s hitting is his own stubborn refusal to accept what God has told us.

    He even denies the Words of Jesus.

    At that point I have to let him stew, because there’s no helping such a man, and no point arguing.

  36. God is love. Perfect Love. The true God that is.

    Your god Steve isn’t.

    I would guess that you are more loving than your god.

  37. As Fr. Thomas Hopko points out in volume 7 of his series, The Orthodox Faith:

    According to the saints, the “fire” that will consume sinners at the coming of the Kingdom of God is the same “fire” that will shine with splendor in the saints. It is the “fire” of God’s love; the “fire” of God Himself who is Love. “For our God is a consuming fire” (Hebrews 12:29), who “dwells in unapproachable light” (I Timothy 6:16). For those who love God and who love all creation in Him, the “consuming fire” of God will be radiant bliss and unspeakable delight. For those who do not love God, and who do not love at all, this same “consuming fire” will be the cause of their “weeping” and their “gnashing of teeth.” Thus it is the Church’s spiritual teaching that God does not punish man by some material fire or physical torment. God simply reveals Himself in the risen Lord Jesus in such a glorious way that no man can fail to behold His glory. It is the presence of God’s splendid glory and love that is the scourge of those who reject its radiant power and light.

    http://curiousprimatebs.blogspot.com.au/2007/05/eastern-orthodox-understanding-of.html

  38. Steve, Jesus came as a Jew preaching to Jews primarily. They already had an established theological system, which has remained largely unchanged and it is wise to search out what they believe in order to provide a more complete cultural context.

    I have a more sure Word in that Jesus told me that when I have truly laid down my life, I will look up to all, just as he did and as He does, and I know Him well enough to know that this is the Truth. But not all have this knowledge and so they twist the scriptures to support their own hellish thesis and become hell’s preachers.

    Could it be that the very light you say Jesus brought to the world is the light you are in fact rejecting while all the while upholding your own faith? Maybe you could be more of a Stephen than a Steve? But you might get ‘stoned’ instead of stoning others. LOL. Fall on the Rock lest the Rock falls on you!

    Ask yourself, who do I want to see in ‘hell’? Who do I know (personally) that should be there and why? Doubtless you will have some pious platitude or persuasion to proffer but to me they are simply arguments based on suppositions and are not according to knowledge.

    But there is a very simple answer – just agree with me that the Lord Jesus Christ will correct, comfort and complete us all and teach us all that we need to know by His abiding Spirit within us, the Holy Spirit. Amen? I’m up for it – I can take it! But can you?

  39. “Thus it is the Church’s spiritual teaching that God does not punish man by some material fire or physical torment. God simply reveals Himself in the risen Lord Jesus in such a glorious way that no man can fail to behold His glory. It is the presence of God’s splendid glory and love that is the scourge of those who reject its radiant power and light.”

    EXCELLENT – 10/10.

    The Lord showed me once how it is when a person who has no knowledge of Him encounters him as Love for the first time – they just fall at His feet when they see His Goodness and He raises them up and they fall anew, and again and again as they are consumed in His grace and lifted up to be with Him, and they rise up into the air as in a dance.

  40. “I don’t think it is right to change peoples published names either Steve”.

    So it was ~Steve~ who exercised editorial discretion and removed my posts? LOL: the champion of sound doctrine and defender of the Gospel – that paragon of theological excellence, that steadfastly loyal purveyor of God’s truth – can’t answer a simple question about one of his heroes.

    How does it go, Steve? If you can’t stand the heat, shut off the gas to the oven? Your tactics are typical of your kind, showing you up as the shallow pentecostal bully that you are: you stand over those that you can, but you quickly back away from a fight where you know that you’re going to get hammered. Gutless, but no wonder.

  41. The fact is, Anonymous, that you are the stand-over man, and secretive, hidden and obsessed with it, like a shadow which darkens every area it comes into contact with. You would turn every site, every thread, every commentary into your personal hate zone.

    The only reason you target me is that you assume I have connections with the people you hate the most, but, in your weakness of character, you are afraid to go head to head with anyone from your personal target group who might in any way challenge your own theology, whatever that may be, because no one knows, and no one is able to see where you are coming from with your attacks.

    Like any lily livered milksop you thrive on an uneven playing field. You depend on it. You could not survive without it. But, as you see, you are powerless with it because anyone with half a brain sees so for through it they can totally ignore you and actually see the wood and the trees beyond. You’re the shadow man drying up any well with dirt, dust and ashes.

    That is your strategy. I don’t want anything to do with you, except to call you out when you do your utmost to intimidate people here o elsewhere.

    The reason I won’t toe your line or play your game is that I comment here as steve, have control over what I say, to whom and when, have been a regular commenter, am known by other commenters for what I stand, and rarely back down from sensible commentary from people with reasonable intentions.

    But, having that control over who I say what to, I am free, especially rom you, to whom I am not answerable, nor ever would be, and will not be bullied by a nameless nobody who doesn’t have the courage of his own convictions enough to let us know who he is, what he stands for, or even what he believes, avoids every question asked of him, and turns everything he touches into hatred.

    Bones I’ll talk with, most of the time, and Greg, most of the time, and even wazza, because at least they have the balls to talk about what they actually believe, and we all know something about each other, even if we don’t agree.

    So it’s not me who is backing down, Anonymous, but you who is sniping from your lofty emptiness. You disqualify yourself with your cowardice.

    And yes, I will moderate anything which takes us into your ugly little world of envy, spite and hatred.

    Now we’ll see which self-centredly edited segment you’ll select from this comment for your next cowardly attack. Be sure to note it will be gone by sunset.

  42. Bones, people who are in their sin will remain in their sin. The only way out is through accepting Jesus as Lord. Jesus paid for their sin but will not violate their will if they choose to retain their condition of rebellion against God as the children of disobedience. Sin cannot remain before the Presence of God.

    There shall by no means enter it anything that defiles, or causes an abomination or a lie, but only those who are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life.

    What you are saying is that God will force people against their will to become saints after they have spent a lifetime denying Christ, rejecting God the Creator and following their own ways, or worshipping false gods.

    You are saying that God is so loving that He will violate a person’s right to reject Him by making them something they did not want to be in their lifetime.

    What, then, was the point of the cross, of preaching the gospel, of leaving people in the earth for 2,000 years after Christ to suffer as sinners in the earth and then be changed at God’s own whim, regardless of whether they believed or not on the earth.

    So people engaged in extreme sin and repulsive acts which caused the suffering and deaths of hundreds, thousands or millions on the earth will merely have the light shone on them after they have died and been resurrected at the judgement and God will hose them down and give them a pat on the back for sending innocent people to their deaths long before their allotted time?

    Will He say to these mass murderers and tyrants, “Well done, my good and faithful servant, enter into My Rest”?

    So what we do in the here and now, according to your sentimental logic, has no bearing whatsoever on the final outcome?

    So let’s carry on sinning, then, wouldn’t you say, Bones? Is that what you are saying, because I can’t see any other logic to your claims that the actual time of salvation for all men is at the judgment seat of God and not in the earth, Today, by way of a decision made to confess Jesus as Lord.

    What are we supposed to do then? Stop preaching the gospel? For what is the point if you are correct?

  43. Here’s the deal, wazza, and I’m certain you are aware of it. Zorro/Anonymous, being, probably, the same pseudonym in a different mask, having a growing wardrobe to match his virtuoso vacuousity, has no interest in contributing to the general discussion or debate we enjoy, occasionally become passionate about and gradually build upon as regular contributors.

    He rides on the backs of those of us who do by picking out their particular understandings, ideologies and theologies and, from a safe distance, harpooning and lampooning anything he selectively determines to piggyback like a ghost in drag.

    Lately, he has taken to obsessive attacks on Phil Pringle, not just here, but anywhere he can gain traction.

    Here he is attempting to gain entry into his extended list of gripes by opening an account with me, charging that I am evading his questions, when, in fact, I am sidestepping his desire to create another anti-C3 blog over which he can preside, as he does at several other sites which are specifically aimed at deriding C3, Hillsong and any contemporary movement which isn’t Reformed or Lutheran.

    I see no point in this when most of the things he considers controversial and cultic have been dealt with over the last four or so years on several threads which I have contributed to, often form the position of having been banned or moderated for actually speaking against those who use innuendo, false accusations and incorrectly utilised doctrine to attack C3, Hillsong and the like.

    I have already pointed Zorro to those threads, and even set up a thread especially for him to comment on dedicated to his anti-C3 stance, which he declined, and which, for me, was the end of the matter.

    I am not interested in letting this nominal poltergeist disrupt and invade every thread with his sarcasm, rudeness and obsessive cultishness against a specific group of people and particularly individuals he should be approaching personally.

    Of douse I have a view of these groups, but as you are undoubtedly aware, if I answer even a simple question Zorro poses it will inevitably lead to an introduction of his list of controversies, most of which have been covered in the era when specks ran the blog.

    Specks, who was so anti-C3 he eventually was outed by the very people he claimed to be a friend of when he cruelly turned on them in spectacularly unkind fashion and unapologetically ran off, embarrassed, to create his own dedicated spiteful blogs, on which Zorro is a star pit-bull, ripping into anyone who comments against Elliott, Gorter, Murray or any other contributor.

    Blogs from which I am banned because I am seen as a dissenting voice, even though my comments have been measured and straightforward. Yet Zorro, the sword against all dissent, has full commenting rights, unimpeached and uncut.

    Zorro, who never produces an article himself, who never reveals his own theology, and never answers questions posed by others.

    There are enough anti-C3 blogs out there. I’m not interested in allowing Zorro/Anonymous recreate his ugly obsession on threads I create.

    Is that ‘no’ enough?

  44. “What, then, was the point of the cross…”

    Christ’s death on the Cross was not meant to satisfy some sort of Divine Justice, rather it was to defeat death, by death and restore the image of God within man that was lost at the Fall.

    God’s going to hold them against their will? When Christ comes there will be nowhere to go from God. Nowhere. Every knee shall bow and every tongue shall confess Him as Lord. The saved and unsaved shall see Him in His glory and will be with Him forever.

  45. Melito of Sardis’ homily On the Passover (2nd century)

    The Final Triumph of Christ

    But He arose from the dead and mounted up to the heights of heaven. When the Lord had clothed himself with humanity, and had suffered for the sake of the sufferer, and had been bound for the sake of the imprisoned, and had been judged for the sake of the condemned, and buried for the sake of the one who was buried,

    he rose up from the dead, and cried aloud with this voice: Who is he who contends with me? Let him stand in opposition to me. I set the condemned man free; I gave the dead man life; I raised up the one who had been entombed.

    Who is my opponent? I, he says, am the Christ. I am the one who destroyed death, and triumphed over the enemy, and trampled Hades under foot, and bound the strong one, and carried off man to the heights of heaven, I, he says, am the Christ.

    Therefore, come, all families of men, you who have been befouled with sins, and receive forgiveness for your sins. I am your forgiveness, I am the passover of your salvation, I am the lamb which was sacrificed for you, I am your ransom, I am your light, I am your saviour, I am your resurrection, I am your king, I am leading you up to the heights of heaven, I will show you the eternal Father, I will raise you up by my right hand.

    This is the one who made the heavens and the earth, and who in the beginning created man, who was proclaimed through the law and prophets, who became human via the virgin, who was hanged upon a tree, who was buried in the earth, who was resurrected from the dead, and who ascended to the heights of heaven, who sits at the right hand of the Father, who has authority to judge and to save everything, through whom the Father created everything from the beginning of the world to the end of the age.

    This is the alpha and the omega. This is the beginning and the end–an indescribable beginning and an incomprehensible end. This is the Christ. This is the king. This is Jesus. This is the general. This is the Lord. This is the one who rose up from the dead. This is the one who sits at the right hand of the Father. He bears the Father and is borne by the Father, to whom be the glory and the power forever. Amen.

  46. Well, yes, every knee will bow and every tongue confess Jesus as Lord, but some because they have already bowed the knee willingly, others when they discover, too late, who he really is.

    But there is evidence, in context, that Paul is talking about salvation coming whilst we are yet in the earth, because it goes on to discuss working out our own salvation with fear and trembling:

    Philippians 2
    9 Therefore God also has highly exalted Him and given Him the name which is above every name,
    10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, and of those on earth, and of those under the earth,
    11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
    12 Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling;
    13 for it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.

  47. Does God hate sinners because He detests sin so much?

    How did God treat sinners?

    He says I’ll come and eat with you to the tax collector.

    He says neither do I condemn you to the adulteress.

    Far from condemning sinners to judgment and the pit of hell as the evangelical god has become, that god has become an idol.

    Jesus, our God, sups with sinners, doesn’t condemn sinners, takes pity and has mercy on sinners.

    Jesus is the embodiment of Love.

    It is people who will condemn you of your sins. It is yourself who condemns you of your sins. Not God. Not the God of Love.

    That’s like condemning a person who has a disease.

    It is a judgmental god who created humanity IN THE KNOWLEDGE THAT IT WOULD SIN and then judge humanity to eternal suffering because of that sin, that god is a sadistic god. A god who condemns humanity for inflicting sin, suffering and death on itself. That god makes no sense and is an idol.

    Jesus doesn’t condemn you because of your sins.

  48. No one is saying we don’t sup with sinners. I sup with sinners daily.

    You are getting your scriptures confused.

    Of course Jesus met with sinners. he came for the sinner, not the righteous. He came to give them redemption. He came to save them. He came to announce the arrival of the Kingdom of God.

    He also came to tell them to repent because the Kingdom was at hand.

    He didn’t say to he woman caught in adultery, “OK go and carry on sinning!” He told her to go and sin no more. The accusers were convicted because Jesus said hey could stone her to death if there was none without sin. Their very sin convicted them and she no longer had accusers.

    Jesus confronted sin. He never told anyone it was acceptable to remain in sin. That is why he met with sinners. He showed them righteousness and they were drawn to it.

    He said the Holy Spirit would come when he was raised and the Spirit would convince people of sin, righteousness and judgment.

    That is not condoning sin, as you seem to imply. That is saying the Holy Spirit will convince people of their sin, their need of righteousness and the fact the devil is judged and all who follow the devil with him.

    Therefore they should turn from their own ways and turn to God through faith in Jesus Christ.

    The only way out of sin is to receive the free gift of salvation through faith in Jesus.

    We are called and separated to meet with sinners and prepare their hearts for change. We are called and sent to preach the good news. We can’t preach the gospel if we do not go to them and minister to them.

    Jesus didn’t go tot the tax-collector’s house to condone his sin, but to convince him of his need of change, which is what happened.

    Jesus is the embodiment of love, but don’t mistake love for weak sensitivity which ignores the consequences of sin. Love covers a multitude of sin, but it also makes the way clear for the sinner to repent without fear of condemnation.

    Jesus is compassion, but don’t turn compassion into permission to rebel. He is full of grace, but don’t turn grace into a license for lawlessness.

    Jesus supped with sinners, but he also overturned the money lenders tables, severely chastised the lawyers, rebuked his own disciples for their lack of faith and for representing satan, taught extremely hard doctrines which caused followers to walk away.

    Jesus’ sermon on the mount not only confirmed the Law of Moses for the hearers, but upgraded it into an even more difficult path to follow.

    People talk about God who is love and Jesus being the epitome of love and forget the hard things the Father has said and done through time, and the demanding teachings of the Son.

    I think you have idolised love at the expense of truth.

  49. Bones,
    Jesus doesn’t condemn you because of your sins.

    Well I have not only said this all along, but produced scriptural evidence of it. Jesus doesn’t condemn anyone.

    People are condemned by their own sin.

    But the only sin which counts is that of rejecting Christ.

    That is what Jesus said. That is what I have produced on this thread at least three times, but you still don’t get it. Lok, read it again. Jesus’ own words:

    “God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved. He who believes in Him is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.”

    He who does not believe is condemned already. Why?

    Because he has not believed on the name of the only Begotten Son of God.

    That is what condemns a man.

    Unbelief.

    Not believing in the Son of God.

    Well, how will they believe if they do not hear? And how will they hear if no one is sent? Sent to do what? Preach the gospel, because faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.

    How near is this faith that is required to believe?

    “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith which we preach). Romans 10:8

    Which is a direct quote from Deuteronomy 30:14.

    “But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may do it.”

    Followed by the passage which ends in being admonished to choose life over death and blessing over cursing. Paul is making very clear the importance of our confession of faith in Christ Jesus, Today, whilst we still can, and the fact that it is on our lips, in our hearts, that we believe with the heart to righteousness and confess with our mouths to salvation.

    It is faith through God’s grace which saves, but without righteousness being accredited we remain in sin, even though Jesus has paid the price of it.

    By grace, through faith.

  50. You guys are in essence saying much the same thing a different way, and far be it from me to get in the middle of a dog-fight. Where the contention appears to focus is on the issue of an eternal hell or the reconciliation (renewal) of all things in Christ as described by Paul in Ephesians 1.

    The problem with scripture is that nuances of meaning may be implied which were never really intended, such that the Word becomes a stumbling block so contention arises and debate ensues.

    Jesus uses the metaphor of a thing which arises out of the ground for unbelief, and indeed it is this unbelief that is condemned from long ago and the remedy is to have the faith of God.

    This Oros, this fig tree, sycamine, Mulberry, mountain, which arises out of the earth – is sensual, devilish and earthly – it is the flesh and the flesh is the bastion of Babylon and of unbelief.

    I asked Jesus some time back, when grappling with the concept of hell, as Jesus began to break the spell of hell over my life by showing me that someone I presumed should have been consigned to the pit was in fact in Paradise with Jesus, “OK, so who goes to heaven and who to hell?”

    His reply, “Ian it is like this, whatever is of Me returns to Me, and whatever is not, does not”. Later I found where it said, “For all things are of, too and by Him and without Him, nothing consists.” In other words, everything is His – EVERYTHING!

    I think we are meant to be ambassadors of the kingdom, and not preachers of hell. The Law of Condemnation is for the unbeliever as the default position to grace and is a prison, such that God has imprisoned all in disobedience, for all were sold under sin and not of their own Genesis – hence it is not a free will you have but a freed will you need, and we all need, to serve the Lord in righteousness.

    We are either slave to sin or servant of righteousness, but in the end it is the same imprisonment, the same captivity that contains us all, and God is in all Mankind, He is in everyone, and some vessels are to honor and some to dishonor.

    Unbelief is condemned – it has no power – it has no value – no worth – only faith works – and faith comes by the hearing, and the hearing comes by the Word of God (Jesus, the Power of God) and it is the anointing or Power of the Word which breaks the yoke of bondage to sin.

    Fine, this is beautiful, but Paul too grappled with the flesh and said that it was not him that sinned but sin which worked in his members, and he longed to be free from the Law of Condemnation graven in stone, and it was he who declared that there is therefore now NO CONDEMNATION to those who are in Christ, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit, which is a statement of condition, not a conditional statement (Rms 8:9).

    But weigh this, if all died in Christ and all were resurrected in Him, how many does that leave, Steve? Who is “in Christ?” if not everyone? For He contains all and is all, and by Him do all things consist, both in heaven and in the earth. Aa-meen.

  51. “He didn’t say to he woman caught in adultery, “OK go and carry on sinning!” He told her to go and sin no more.”

    And He didn’t say, “Stop sinning or else’ or “If you keep sinning then look out when you die cause I’ve got a hot place prepared for you”.

    He told the woman to stop sinning.

    Not because God is petrified of sin.

    God’s not that small.

    It’s because sin damages, wounds and destroys us. Nothing at all to do with God.

    Sin is all about us and the consequences which we live with.

  52. “You guys are in essence saying much the same thing…”

    Huh.

    One of us is saying that God doesn’t want to destroy His own creation which is broken through the disease of sin and, when Christ returns in glory, all will behold His glory and saint and sinner will live with Him forever. For some that will be heaven, for some that will be hell, depending upon which way your heart is inclined.

    The other god seeks to destroy its creation because of its sin. It even hates its creation which has inflicted a disease upon itself. So much so that it will drag its diseased creation and throw it into a pit of fire to burn forever.

    Which one is God the Father?

  53. So now sin is a disease? I’d like to know how Adam caught this disease when Eden was disease free! No. Adam sinned by his own will. He disobeyed an instruction from God.

    And you say there will be people in the New Jerusalem, apparently, who hate being there because they are still in sin and can’t stand the light of God which shines forever.

    These are nonsense statements.

    No. There is a new heaven and a new earth and a New Jerusalem where the saints will reside under the Light of God, and where no defiled person will be.

    The Lake of Fire is a completely different place, reserved for the devil ad fallen angels and all who idolise the devil and his false gods, and who rebel against God Almighty.

    It is also tragic to read Bones’ interpretation of God’s justice as destroying His creation. No. Not at all. He has given people every opportunity to be saved on earth. He has preached to the spirits in the prison of Hades. He has led captivity captive and brought them out of the Grave into Paradise. He has sent His disciples int the whole world to proclaim the day of salvation.

    Jesus has died and been resurrected to pay the price of every man’s sin. He took their place at the cross. Their sin was laid upon Him.

    Are you saying Jesus was diseased with sin? He carried our sicknesses and bore our griefs, but he was not diseased with sin.

    He took the sin of the world. It was not disease. It was rebellion. It was the rejection of God’s will. It was disobedience. It was lawlessness. It was falling short of the glory of God. It was idolatry. Gd called it adultery – going after other gods.

    Next you will be saying that rebellion is a sickness, that lawlessness is an illness, that disobedience is a virus.

    You are saying that men could not help their sin, that they caught it like some airborne bacteria which invaded their bodies.

    Sin is an act of the human will which is directly contrary to the will of God.

  54. “He has given people every opportunity to be saved on earth.”

    No, your god hasn’t.

    Many will burn because they never heard.

    That in itself shows a weird solution to the eternal damnation of man.

    If you don’t hear than you are damned.

  55. “And you say there will be people in the New Jerusalem, apparently, who hate being there because they are still in sin and can’t stand the light of God which shines forever.”

    Yes.

    Do you think people will like being in your hell and will go willingly?

  56. Christ’s Death: A Rescue Mission, Not a Payment for Sins

    Because we don’t owe a debt of guilt for Adam’s sin, Jesus’ suffering wasn’t a payment to the Father.

    Every day, Christians pray “deliver us from evil,” not knowing that the Greek original reads “the evil,” that is, “the evil one.” The New Testament Scriptures are full of references to the malice of the devil, but we generally overlook them. I think this is because our idea of salvation is that Christ died on the cross to pay His Father the debt for our sins. The whole drama takes place between Him and the Father, and there’s no role for the evil one.

    But for the early Christians, the evil one was a very real and malevolent presence. Temptation coaxes us toward sin, and sin leads to sickness and death, and ultimately confinement in the realm of the evil one. The devil’s main purpose is not to scare us, in a horror-movie way; when we’re scared of him we’re alert to him, and that might undermine his plans. Instead, he wants to quietly, subtly lure us into stepping away from God. Sin leads to death, but death also leads to sin. Hebrews 2:14 explains that the evil one has always controlled the human race through fear of death; that’s what most deeply terrifies us and makes us grab at earthly security. But “whoever would save his life will lose it” (Matthew 16:25). That’s the bitter trick. Desperate, selfish clutching lands us in the realm of death.

    But God sent Christ to rescue us; He took on human form (showing us that these humble human bodies can bear the presence of God, like the Burning Bush bore His fire), lived a sinless life, went into the realm of Hades like all human flesh, and then blasted it open by His power. Death could not contain Him, because He is Life. When we join ourselves to Him and begin to assimilate His Life, we too are freed from the control of the evil one.

    This is not a “ransom” paid to the Father; the Father wasn’t holding us captive. It is an offering, but not a payment. Look at it this way. Christ suffered to save us from our sins in the same way a fireman suffers burns and wounds to save a child from a burning home. He may dedicate this courageous act as an offering to the fire chief he loves and admires. He may do it to redeem the child from the malice of the arsonist who started the fire. But his suffering isn’t paid to anyone, in the sense of making a bargain.

    Likewise, God redeemed His people from the hand of Pharaoh when He rescued them in the Red Sea. But He didn’t pay Pharaoh anything. He Himself was not paid anything. It was a rescue action, not a business transaction, and our redemption by Christ is the same.

    There are some things that developed in Western Christianity that don’t appear in this account at all. As you can see, there’s no concept that our sins put us in God’s debt legally: No idea that somebody has to pay something before He can forgive us. He just forgives us. When the prodigal son came home, the father was already running toward him with his arms open. He didn’t say, “I’d like to take you back, son, but my hands are tied. Who’s going to pay this Visa bill?”

    This means that something else is missing-guilt. Now, of course we are responsible for our sins, and guilty in that sense. But we’re not born carrying the debt of guilt for Adam’s sin. That’s what the fourth-century theologian Augustine of Hippo meant by the term “Original Sin.” But his theory was not widely accepted in the early church (in fact, not all Eastern Christians call him a saint, and he was far from the towering figure that he became in Western thinking later on.) The idea of inborn debt compelled Augustine to say that, logically, a baby who died before baptism would have to be damned.

    Instead, although early Christian spiritual writings are continually focusing on sin and repentance, the concepts of guilt and debt rarely appear. St. Andrew, like most writers of the age, views sin instead as a self-inflicted wound. Likewise, he sees God as compassionate rather than wrathful. God is always described as rushing to meet us like the father of the prodigal, or coming like the good Samaritan to bind up our wounds.

    In Orthodoxy, there is less of an emphasis on discrete, external acts of sin, and more a sense of it being a pervading sickness. Christ didn’t come to save us just from the penalty for our sins, from death and eternal misery. He came to save us from our sins, now, today–from the poison that flows in our veins, that alienates us from the Light, that marches us toward death. He saves us like the fireman carrying that child from a burning building. We are as helpless as that child; nothing we do saves us. But as we gradually creak open the rusty doors of our hearts, we begin to discover the faint sense of His presence. He was there all along, as He is present in every person He creates. Attending to that flickering flame, we nurture it and allow it to spread, until we are filled with His light and glory.

    http://www.beliefnet.com/Faiths/Christianity/Orthodox/2006/01/Christs-Death-A-Rescue-Mission-Not-A-Payment-For-Sins.aspx?p=2

  57. Again Bones, excellent cutting and pasting. LOL – seriously though, this explanation actually makes sense in a way that the Pentecostal and Protesting Catholics do not, and given the arcane beginnings of Western Church (WC) Tradition, it is not strange that their traditions seem very strange, but what is surprising is the way that those faithful to this exegesis, to this brand of theology, do not really do as Paul admonishes, prove all things and to hold fast to that which is plainly and evidently true.

    Logic would imply that if the deceived are deceivable and satan is as subtle as they say, then “Buying the Brooklyn Bridge” of being made “as gods” is understandable, for if they are of their father, the devil, then to them who is god? They are!

    What is it that we exchange? Our “old” righteousness for His NEW! We go from a righteousness based on our judgment of Him to a righteousness founded in His judgment of us as we forsake our own mind and our own opinions for His, and the more that we are transformed into said likeness the more He and His Lordship is made manifest in our flesh.

    He is the Aleph and the Tav, the Ox and the Mark, the Head and the Consummation.

    “Stay your hand Abraham, I shall provide MYSELF (as) the offering for sin”.

  58. Steve, I asked God to explain to me what sin and holiness is – He said, “Sin is separation FROM ME while holiness is separation TO ME.” To be separated from sin we need to be circumcised in heart by the Sword of the Spirit – the sword which guards the Way to Life – that cuts us free from bondage to sin – from the Tree of knowledge to the Tree of Life.”

    When God said to Adam (who was still one person at that time) “Do not eat for in the day that you do you shall surely die the death” it was a classic case of “Don’t say don’t”. It was after the separation of the woman from out of the man that the serpent came to seduce, to steal and to destroy, the man heading his wife instead of the Lord which started something of a trend….

    Back in 2001, I heard “Ian, I want you to ask me the hard questions.”

    My initial response was “OK what is with the devil, why did you create him?”

    The answer, “If I had not created the devil, then Man would have become his own devil.” He showed me a picture of a Western scene, dry gulch with no life, brush weeds and broken down wooden buildings with a an “end-of-the-line” buffer, which was backed by a mound of dirt and was the only thing that looked in good operating order, even new. I heard, “The Devil is the end of the line – he is there to show you that you have gone TOO FAR!”

    Think Prodigal Son, penury and pig slops…and then imagine a Father with a robe and a ring and a decent meal! Trouble is, we Xians have a bad habit of being like the other brother…and think maybe our errant brother should have been told to go to hell….

    God in Jesus is all about cutting us free from the fetters of the flesh – while the judgmental are all about making Man accountable to and for the flesh – but we are to KNOW NO MAN after the flesh.

    As long as you think God needed to be “paid off” for Man’s sin, then it is possible to believe anything. The reason why Man accepts such concepts is that we are more attuned to punishment instead of correction and we want our tribute too!

    The other day The Lord dropped this bombshell on me – “Salvation is not a BURDEN but a BLESSING!” The Church has made Man responsible for his sin and his salvation, through the lie of original sin and the lie of there being a price to pay – a bounty – but indeed God in Christ did provide a bounty of blessing to those who believe, and to those who reject Him, there is the vanity of their own opinions and the torments of their own judgment.

    Keep those articles coming Bones – they are Manna for Man.

  59. As I have written previously, Bones, according to scripture, there will be no one who defiles in the New Jerusalem, so how could there be anyone who has died in their sins present in the City of God? It’s not going to happen.

    There won’t be a place in the new heavens and earth for those who reject God. The explanation you have presented is wrong Biblically on so many levels.

    The entire reason Jesus was set was to redeem mankind. Why? Because of sin. This is not a concept of the ‘western’ church, as if there was a divide in theology between hemispheres. It is a Biblical truth.

    The problem you have is in believing in the existence of Adam, who is attributed with being the one who introduced sin into the world.

    Sin patently separates us from God. Jesus came to redeem us from sin by paying the price of sin. This is the Great Exchange. His substitutionary sacrifice paid the ransom on our lives.

    Romans 5:13-17
    (For until the law sin was in the world, but sin is not imputed when there is no law. Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over those who had not sinned according to the likeness of the transgression of Adam, who is a type of Him who was to come.

    But the free gift is not like the offence. For if by the one man’s offense many died, much more the grace of God and the gift by the grace of the one Man, Jesus Christ, abounded to many. And the gift is not like that which came through the one who sinned. For the judgment which came from one offense resulted in condemnation, but the free gift which came from many offenses resulted in justification.

    For if by the one man’s offense death reigned through the one, much more those who receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness will reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.)

    You see, those who receive the abundance of grace and the gift of righteousness. Those who receive because they believe.

    Sin was in the world because of Adam’s transgression and continued from Adam, before the Law and since the Law, until Christ, who fulfilled the Law.

    The work of the cross is entirely about redemption from sin. In fulfilling the Law of Moses, Christ put an end to the transgressions which were against us through the Law, and which killed us spiritually.

    Colossians 2:13-14
    And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, He has made alive together with Him, having forgiven you all trespasses, having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us, which was contrary to us. And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.

    This follows on from Paul reminding us that we were saved by the preaching of the gospel.

    Colossians 1:21-23
    And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight–if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard, which was preached to every creature under heaven, of which I, Paul, became a minister.

  60. There have been some spilt-brain people – where the left and right hemispheres of the brain have had to be separated due to a medical condition.

    In these people, you get a different answer to the question “Do you believe in God?| depending on the ear that you ask the question.

    If you ask it in the right ear, the answer will come from the left-brain and they say ‘No’. The left brain is the strictly logical part of the brain.

    If you ask the question in the left ear you often get a “Yes”, as the right brain is the more wholistic, poetic part of the brain – more open to the spiritual.

    Now for the $6M question : Will this person go to heaven or hell, and why?

  61. The idea that God can’t handle sin is a retarded idea. Jesus ie God mixed with sinners and saw sin abound everywhere yet wasn’t tainted by it nor did He go around condemning sinners like Steve’s god will do on the day of judgement.

    God didn’t need the cross to forgive sins. Same with sacrifices. This whole notion that god demands a blood sacrifice to forgive sin is pagan. When the Prodigal returns home did the Father demand of him that he make sacrifice before he will forgive him?

    No.

    Jesus was forgiving sins before the cross.

    Jesus died to defeat death, the consequences of our sin. He was a sacrifice and a ransom to death itself. That’s why He preached to the spirits in Hades. Without the resurrection, the cross is meaningless.

  62. The idea that God can’t handle sin is a retarded idea.

    Exactly, or you do away entirely with a basic tenet of orthodoxy; that Jesus was God from God, Light from Light, True God from true God, begotten adn not made, of one being with the Father…etc etc

  63. Try this trans, especially verses 15-18.
    8. Thus God showed his love for us, whereas we were sinners, Christ died on our behalf.
    9. Therefore, how much more will he sanctify us with his blood and separate us by it from the wrath.
    10. For if while we were enemies, God remained at peace with us through the death of his Son, how much more harmonious [in granting us sanctification through his [Son’s] Life.
    11. And not only so, except we glorify God through Jesus Christ, through whom we now received the harmony.

    12. For whereas through one human being, sin entered the universe, and through sin, death and this death entered humanity, as they all sinned.
    13. For until there was the Law, while sin existed in the universe, it was not considered sin, because there was no Law.
    14. Except death passed from Adam until Moses, also onto those who did not sin, as though that would become the Law of Adam, that being the death which was destined for him.
    15. Except, this injunction was not an endowment as such. For if because of the injunction of one person many would die, how much more the Grace of God and his endowment through one human being Jesus Christ, He would reward so many.
    16. And this endowment was not accorded due to the foolishness of one person. For judgment that originated from one person was with respect to responsibility, however the endowment of being forgiven many sins is with respect to righteousness.
    17. For if because of the foolishness of one person, death was passed on [to all,] more over then that they should receive much grace and endowment and righteousness, that they would pass to eternal life through only one person, Jesus Christ.
    18. In similar manner thus, because of the foolishness of one person, all humanity was under obligation, likewise because of the righteousness of one person, there will be victory with respect to eternal life for all humanity.

  64. I just had to repeat that last verse:

    18. In similar manner thus, because of the foolishness of one person, all humanity was under obligation, likewise because of the righteousness of one person, there will be victory with respect to eternal life for all humanity.

    Now that is a God I can look up to! Once you get over the conditional salvation message, it makes sense, and so does Romans 9…you moldy old chunk of clay you…

  65. So God tell me. Do you desire that Your Son should die to appease Your wrath for Adam’s sin and that anyone who doesn’t accept that is still under Your wrath?

    God: “I desire mercy, not sacrifice”

  66. And Bones, HE cleared out Sheol and triumphed over DEATH! This is the message the world needs, not getting born again as an honorary Jew, but of all Mankind becoming reconciled to God through Jesus Christ.

    There are those who are outside New Jerusalem and who may not enter in until all their sin is expiated from their being – the Jews say that this usually takes from 3 to 11 months in earth time depending on what has to be addressed. Christians struggle with this concept but Jews do not, and guess where we got our religion from?

    Steve perhaps the hardest thing for us to do is to transition from what we have been taught that the scriptures say to what they really do – and this has been going on since Adam was a cowboy. Compare this text to the quote from Colossians.

    13. And you who were dead in your sins and uncircumcised in the flesh, He resurrected you with Himself and He forgave us all our sins,
    14. And He voided with His commandments the conditions of responsibility, those that were against us and He removed them from our midst and piled them on His Cross,

    Now back up to chap 1 and this:

    21. Also those of you who were in olden times but strangers and enemies in your outlook, because of your evil doing, He marks you, (HE MARKS YOU – He is the Mark)
    22. By the body of his flesh and his death, so that He may raise you before Him as saints, without commitment (oaths) or awareness on your part,
    23. If you hold fast to your Faith, as your foundation is true, and if you are not shaken from the Revelation of His Kingdom that which you heard preached in all creation below the sky, of Whom I, Paul, am a servant.

    The trick is to hold fast your faith, but if the faith which we hold fast to is in fact a fallacy, then small wonder so many Xians backslide and lose their grip and slip – it comes from trying to hold on to a greased serpent instead of a rope of hope, or something like that. If you want to make someone fall, simply give them and unsure foundation – but we have a more sure foundation and assurance, the Word of God – Jesus – not (just) a book containing the words of God, but a person containing the Word of God – the Word made flesh.

    Your mother was the door by which you entered this world, but Jesus is the Door by which you enter, or re-enter, the revelation of who you are in Him, by which you enter the Kingdom, and the revelation of how you were born from above and not from beneath, how that your flesh sprang out of the ground but your spirit came down from heaven from out of God and will return to Him. The flesh may not qualify for salvation, there is no good thing in the flesh – until you get the separation of flesh and Spirit, you get nothing except religion and misery and conditional salvation – and backsliders.

    As to none of the sinful being fit to enter the kingdom or New Jerusalem or have any part in it, please be mindful that the Davids of God have been excluded and are outside the camp as it were, and that this situation will reverse in time.

    (New) Jerusalem is a burdensome stone and they that try to lift it shall be crushed by it. New Jerusalem comes down out of heaven, adorned, it is the glory of God, it is you putting on Christ, it is the reality of the glorified God inhabited mature believer, the one who carries Christ like his cloak – not the cowling of religious traditions which prevent Christ being made manifest, but the covering of Christ Himself. When you walk in that reality, people either respond with joy or run in terror.

    This is not some breeding program whereby God is culling the herds to gather His very own flock and to hell with the rest – it is more in the nature of a pruning program! But whatever the metaphor, i have this quiet confidence that God has it way more under control than we may even dare to imagine, and that He was not surprised or undone when Adam (both of them) sinned and fell and began this whole passion play which we are privileged to be a part of and players in.

    Earth, THE Reality Show!

  67. Ian tells us we must not be born again and then proceeds to tell us how we are born again – from our mother and from above. Once and again!

    The fact that Jesus said we must be born again is rather significant, though, don’t you think? Being born from above is being born again, for only those born of flesh can be born from above.

    And this through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, which, wazza, is of the heart, not of the brain or of the mind. A man believes in his heart unto righteousness and confesses with his mouth unto salvation. Those who are unable God accepts as innocents.

    Bones, because he doesn’t actually believe that Genesis is more than myth, and therefore Adam never really existed, because, he says, we all evolved from apes, has to eliminate a key piece of Bible doctrine, then compounds it because he also thinks the whole of Revelation is either myth or fulfilled, and therefore there will be no judgment to come.

    For Bones it has already taken place, so the new heavens, new earth and New Jerusalem already exist, and we, who are saints, must already be there under the light and canopy of God and the Lamb.

    Sin is nothing to God says Greg, yet God has done the utmost thing to conquer sin, death and the grave, in sending His Only Begotten Son to be the Ransom for our sin.

    Sin was everything to God because He gave everything to retrieve us from it, and there was only one way to do it, and that was by the Propitiation, the willing sacrifice of the Son of God, at the cross, whereby God was able to extract those who believe in Him from darkness and translate them into the Kingdom of His dear Son through faith.

    But Greg doesn’t believe that the Propitiation was the substitutionary sacrifice of the Christ, so he can’t accept that this was the reason Jesus hung on the cross, went to the grave and was raised.

    He attributes the status of the Godhead to Christ yet determines to reject the Word, the Way and God’s Wisdom.

  68. Steve’s god is unable to forgive without a blood sacrifice. Steve’s god is inconsistent with the revealed Word. Steve’s god’s creation was set up to fail and be condemned for it. Steve’s god has no compassion or mercy. Steve’s god isn’t a father at all.

  69. I find the notion that God will not forgive sins unless something suffers and bleeds to be abhorrent. Christ died to enter Hades and rescue us from Death- the consequence of sin.

    Jesus didn’t pay a ransom to His Father (what sort of father is that) nor to Satan but to death itself.

    I reject that bloodthirsty Kali-like deity that demands pain, suffering and blood sacrifices before it will accept an apology and I think that is the god most atheists reject as well.

    No doubt that is a god made in people’s own image. A vindictive sadistic god.

    Jesus ie God was able to forgive sins without a blood sacrifice. Sin is a sickness from which we need healing for “by His wounds we are healed’.

  70. Steve :

    And this through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, which, wazza, is of the heart, not of the brain or of the mind

    So is it possible then to have faith in Christ in your heart, but to have a totally incorrect theology in your mind – even an atheistic philosophy? And yet still be saved?

  71. 1 Timothy 2:3-6
    For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour; Who will have all men to be saved, and to come unto the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus; Who gave himself a ransom for all, to be testified in due time.

    Matthew 20:28
    Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

    Matthew 26:28
    For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.

    Hebrews 9:14-15
    How much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? And for this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance.

    Hebrews 9:22-28
    And almost all things are by the law purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission.
    It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us: Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest entereth into the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world:but now once in the end of the world hath he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.

    Romans 3:23-26
    For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness:that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

    Can’t be much clearer than this really.

    If you need more it is all there in the record.

  72. Can’t be much clearer than this.

    If you need more it is all there in the record.

    Saint Athanasius and the ‘Penal Substitutionary’ Atonement Doctrine

    Unfortunately many in the Christian world today accept without reservation ideas that have been passed down to them that do not meet the “great-body-of-Christian-thought-down-the-ages” test. What is even more troublesome is that many Christians do not know (or care) that they are accepting theological innovations of later or modern centuries, some of which are not in keeping with early church teaching (or worse yet, perhaps even contradicting them).

    I believe the cardinal Evangelical doctrine of penal substitution of the atonement (Christ’s vicarious punishment for humanity’s sins as the central work or accomplishment of the cross) is one of these. Contemporary Evangelical Protestant theologian J.I. Packer calls it,

    “a distinguishing mark of the word-wide evangelical fraternity: namely, the belief that the cross had the character of penal substitution, and that it was in virtue of this fact that it brought salvation to mankind.”[1]

    One of the interesting discoveries I made reading St Athanasius’ seminal book, written in the early fourth century, is the complete absence of this notion that for many Evangelical Christians has come to be central to the Gospel message itself: namely the doctrine that Christ paid by vicarious punishment atonement for our individual sins (for which we deserve punishment). Billy Graham is perhaps the most well-known contemporary proponent of this doctrine. I recall hearing him preach many times on television that Christ suffered a horrific death as a punishment (i.e., penalty) for your and my sins. This idea never resonated with me because it raised disturbing issues about the nature of a God Who required such justice served.

    However, as theologian J.I. Packer observes, the stark absence of this view in the early church fathers should not come as a surprise since it is a 16th century medieval interpretation:

    “…Luther, Calvin, Zwingli, Melanchthon and their reforming contemporaries were the pioneers in stating it (my emphasis)… What the Reformers did was to redefine satisfactio (satisfaction), the main mediaeval category for thought about the cross. Anselm’s Cur Deus Homo?, which largely determined the mediaeval development, saw Christ’s satisfactio for our sins as the offering of compensation or damages for dishonour done, but the Reformers saw it as the undergoing of vicarious punishment (poena) to meet the claims on us of God’s holy law and wrath (i.e. his punitive justice).”[2]

    The problem with this doctrine is not in the idea of “substitution”. Early church fathers, of course, understood the meaning and redemptive work of the cross as a “substitution” (IE. Christ in place of us). St Athanasius himself writes:

    “Thus taking a body like our own, because all our bodies were liable to the corruption of death, He surrendered His body to death in place of all, and offered it to the Father (an offering, not a penalty – my emphasis). This He did for sheer love for us, so that in His death all might die, and the law of death thereby be abolished because, when He had fulfilled in His body that for which it was appointed, it was therefore voided of its power for men.”[3] Later the Saint writes that His death on the Cross was a “sufficient exchange (my emphasis) for all.”[4] Later yet he writes of His death on the cross as “a debt owing (my emphasis) which must be paid”[5] And finally he writes, “He died to ransom all…”[6]

    For Saint Athanasius the words exchange, debt, and ransom are used to explain the expiatory work of Our Lord on the Cross on our behalf. Contrast this with the more legalistic and penal (IE punishment) explanation of John Calvin in his Institutes of the Christian Religion:

    “Thus we perceive Christ representing the character of a sinner and a criminal…and it becomes manifest that he suffers for another’s and not for his own crime.”

    What is the problem with the theory of penal substitution? The problem has been expressed well by a contemporary writer:

    “The penal satisfaction theory is entirely legalistic. It assumes that the order of law and justice is absolute; free forgiveness would be a violation of this absolute order; God’s love must be carefully limited lest it infringe on the demands of justice. Sin is a crime against God and the penalty must be paid before forgiveness can become available. According to this view God’s love is conditioned and limited by his justice; that is, God cannot exercise His love to save man until His righteousness (justice) is satisfied. Since God’s justice requires that sin be punished, God’s love cannot save man until the penalty of sin has been paid, satisfying His justice. God’s love is set in opposition to His righteousness, creating a tension and problem in God….According to this legalistic theology, this is why Christ needed to die; he died to pay the penalty of man’s sin and to satisfy the justice of God (my emphasis). The necessity of the atonement is the necessity of satisfying the justice of God; this necessity is in God rather than in man. (my emphasis). And since this necessity is in God, it is an absolute necessity. If God is to save man, God must satisfy His justice before He can in love save man.”

    For many who want to know Our Lord, the God of love, the idea that God the Father required Christ to suffer punishment in order to somehow appease or satisfy His sense of righteousness or justice is an abhorrent idea, keeping many people from accepting the actual love and mercy of God and perverting a correct understanding of the nature of God the Father.

    How do we Eastern Orthodox and the early church tradition understand the debt, the exchange, the ransom and to whom it was paid?

    Saint Athanasius writes,

    “For by the sacrifice of His own body He did two things: He put an end to the law of death which barred our way; and He made a new beginning of life for us…”[7]

    To whom did He make the sacrifice?

    “It was by surrendering to death (my emphasis) the body which He had taken, as an offering and sacrifice free from every stain, that He forthwith abolished death for his human brethren by the offering of the equivalent.” [8]

    The Saint teaches that Christ died, not to appease God the Father, but to rescue mankind (you and me) from death! That was “to whom” he sacrificed himself – the existential/ontological reality of death; that

    “through this union of the immortal Son of God with our human nature, all men were clothed with incorruption in the promise of the resurrection. For the solidarity of mankind is such that, by virtue of the Word’s indwelling in a single human body, the corruption which goes with death has lost its power over all.”

    This may seem like small difference, perhaps even a nuance; however it is a difference that is significant, as it correctly represents the nature of God as “the lover of mankind,” rather than a cosmic egotistical despot or a slave to divine legalism, and the work of the cross as a supreme act of sacrificial love by Our Lord, in which the Holy Trinity was acting (and continues to act) in one accord.

    http://www.antiochian.org/node/25462

  73. Does anyone know why Jesus (God) forgave sins pre-crucifixion without need of a sacrifice?

    There’s a clear theological problem with a God who demands sacrifice for the forgiveness of sins and Jesus who doesn’t.

    The only conclusion is that Jesus wasn’t God with that theology.

    Which is obviously heretical.

  74. So, as long as we don’t discuss these doctrines from scripture you’re OK with the debate, because scripture will forever confound your inability to believe God.

    What you’re saying is that scripture has nothing to do with theology.

    In which case we’re at the mercy of human philosophy alone.

    From a Christian standpoint, you’re position is untenable.

  75. I produced a set of pure scriptures which confound your arguments utterly, and you can only come back with a denial of scripture, of Jesus and of God.

    Based on what? On your own inability to believe.

    That just won’t hold water with God, will it? It can’t.

    You think by bluster you can change one jot or tittle of the Word?

    You actually called Jesus a heretic.

    Now that is unbelievable!

  76. We’ve been here before, but…

    Isaiah 53:4-8
    Surely he hath borne our griefs,
    and carried our sorrows:
    yet we did esteem him stricken,
    smitten of God, and afflicted.
    But he was wounded for our transgressions,
    he was bruised for our iniquities:
    the chastisement of our peace was upon him;
    and with his stripes we are healed.
    All we like sheep have gone astray;
    we have turned every one to his own way;
    and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
    He was oppressed, and he was afflicted,
    yet he opened not his mouth:
    he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter,
    and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb,
    so he openeth not his mouth.
    He was taken from prison and from judgment:
    and who shall declare his generation?
    for he was cut off out of the land of the living:
    for the transgression of my people was he stricken.

    Exchange, substitution!

    For the transgression of my people he was stricken!

  77. Jesus (God) forgives without sacrifice

    Luke 5:17-26

    20 When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.”

    21 The Pharisees and the teachers of the law began thinking to themselves, “Who is this fellow who speaks blasphemy? Who can forgive sins but God alone?”

    22 Jesus knew what they were thinking and asked, “Why are you thinking these things in your hearts? 23 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 24 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 25 Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. 26 Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”

    Luke 7:48f

    48 Then Jesus said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.”

    49 The other guests began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?”

    Mark 2:5-8

    5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

    6 Now some teachers of the law were sitting there, thinking to themselves, 7 “Why does this fellow talk like that? He’s blaspheming! Who can forgive sins but God alone?”

    8 Immediately Jesus knew in his spirit that this was what they were thinking in their hearts, and he said to them, “Why are you thinking these things? 9 Which is easier: to say to this paralyzed man, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up, take your mat and walk’? 10 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the man, 11 “I tell you, get up, take your mat and go home.” 12 He got up, took his mat and walked out in full view of them all. This amazed everyone and they praised God, saying, “We have never seen anything like this!”

    Matthew 9:1-8

    9 Jesus stepped into a boat, crossed over and came to his own town. 2 Some men brought to him a paralyzed man, lying on a mat. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the man, “Take heart, son; your sins are forgiven.”

    3 At this, some of the teachers of the law said to themselves, “This fellow is blaspheming!”

    4 Knowing their thoughts, Jesus said, “Why do you entertain evil thoughts in your hearts? 5 Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’? 6 But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “Get up, take your mat and go home.” 7 Then the man got up and went home. 8 When the crowd saw this, they were filled with awe; and they praised God, who had given such authority to man.

  78. Maybe Jesus knew something about God that Steve doesn’t.

    Luke 23:34

    Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.

    According to Steve his god is unable to forgive without sacrifice and only if that person acknowledges his god’s required sacrifice of his son.

    Jesus obviously didn’t know that or He wouldn’t have asked His Father to forgive the ones who killed Him.

  79. Psalm 51:16-17

    16 You do not delight in sacrifice, or I would bring it;
    you do not take pleasure in burnt offerings.
    17 My sacrifice, O God, is a broken spirit;
    a broken and contrite heart
    you, God, will not despise.

    Psalm 40:6

    Sacrifice and offering you did not desire—
    but my ears you have opened—
    burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not require.

    Hebrews 10

    8 First he said, “Sacrifices and offerings, burnt offerings and sin offerings you did not desire, nor were you pleased with them”—though they were offered in accordance with the law.

    Jeremiah 7:22

    “For I did not speak to your fathers, or command them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings and sacrifices.

    The prophets and Jesus

    Hosea 6:6; Matthew 9:13; Matthew 12:7

    “I desire mercy, not sacrifice.”

  80. Why, Bones, with that kind of exegesis you could start your own cult.

    Greg and Ian would hook up with you I’m sure. Maybe they could start Newcastle and Christchurch chapters. Then you could triangulate with Bundaberg.

    Has it occured to you yet that no one could be born again until Jesus had been raised from the dead? It all comes back to the resurrection, doesn’t it. The resurrection you have stated is not essential to anything.

    No one could be saved until He had died and become the firstborn from the dead.

    “He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.”

    I have never said that God could not forgive before or without the cross. Of course He can. As David said, “Blessed is the man to whom the LORD does not impute iniquity, And in whose spirit there is no deceit.”

    Forgiveness has always been the criteria for fellowship. But washing away the sin of the world took more than this. It took the blood of Jesus. God forgave Israel when they sacrificed animals in the tabernacle of the wilderness and in the Temple. But it only ever covered their sin, never completely removed it. Notice their remission was through blood. Notice. This blood atoned for, covered, but did not remove, sin.

    God imputes righteousness to people on the basis of faith, but what is their faith in? According to the new testament our faith must be in the Son of God, including His shed blood for the remission of sins, in the propitiation, in the cross which saved us from sin. That is why Paul says, “We preach Christ crucified”, and, “the foolishness of the cross confounds the wise”.

    For righteousness to be imputed, we have to believe something, but that something is set by God not theologians who hate the hard sayings and have no idea of the power, grace and glory of God Who is the Almighty, who have a kind of dutiful respect for God but do not fear Him with any kind of holy reverence.

    God imputed righteousness to Abraham before the cross. Yes! But why? Because Abraham believed in the promise God gave him that he would have an heir by Sarah.

    The thing is that, for us, who live in this age, God chose the cross – the death and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ – as the means, the pathway, the faith access by which men could be saved. He chose the blood of Jesus as the propitiation for sin. Without blood, God says, there can be no remission for sin. The blood of bulls and goats, he tells us, is only good for atonement. It has to be ceremonially and faithfully repeated on an annual basis.

    The blood of Jesus cleanses us forever.

    That is what He said, and therefore, that is the means by which a man is saved, and the means by which sin is forgiven for the whole world in one action through the sacrifice of Christ – on the cross – ONCE AND FOR ALL.

    Where you claim God does not require sacrifice you are bending scripture so far it will come back at you one day. He was talking about the sacrifice of bulls, goats and doves, which became no more than a formalised religious chore for a people who constantly fell back into licentiousness and idol worship the moment they forgot that Almighty God was their God.

    The Son, who is the Word made flesh, was always set, before the foundation of the earth, to be the Lamb who was slain – the sacrificial innocent Lamb of God – set apart to be the propitiation for the world’s sin.

    All you’ve done is lazily take a set of scriptures, isolate them, and tie them to your eisegesis, totally ignoring the rest of Scripture, an entire body of Biblical truth which completely annihilates your proposition.

    The verses presented earlier at April 8 2013, 8.39 and at 10.16pm absolutely trump anything you have written here.

    https://signposts02.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/all-or-nothing/#comment-45260

    The thing is that you are not just denying what I have told you or presented, you are denying Scripture itself by attacking it with unconnected verses taken out of context.

    That’s as cultish as it gets.

  81. But, using Scripture alone, I can end the confusion you are sowing even over sacrifice, blood and sin. Long passage, I know, but read carefully and consider the following, matching it against your suppositions.

    Hebrews 10
    1 For the law, having a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with these same sacrifices, which they offer continually year by year, make those who approach perfect.
    2 For then would they not have ceased to be offered? For the worshipers, once purified, would have had no more consciousness of sins.
    3 But in those sacrifices there is a reminder of sins every year.
    4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats could take away sins.
    5 Therefore, when He came into the world, He said: “Sacrifice and offering You did not desire, But a body You have prepared for Me.
    6 In burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin You had no pleasure.
    7 Then I said, ‘Behold, I have come–In the volume of the book it is written of Me–To do Your will, O God.’
    8 Previously saying, “Sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings, and offerings for sin You did not desire, nor had pleasure in them” (which are offered according to the law),
    9 then He said, “Behold, I have come to do Your will, O God.” He takes away the first that He may establish the second.
    10 By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
    11 And every priest stands ministering daily and offering repeatedly the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins.
    12 But this Man, after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down at the right hand of God,
    13 from that time waiting till His enemies are made His footstool.
    14 For by one offering He has perfected forever those who are being sanctified.
    15 But the Holy Spirit also witnesses to us; for after He had said before,
    16 “This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them,”
    17 then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”
    18 Now where there is remission of these, there is no longer an offering for sin.
    19 Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus,
    20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh,
    21 and having a High Priest over the house of God,
    22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.

  82. Dear Lord, that passage of scripture is brilliant. I had to read it over and over it is so marvellous! Halleluiah! Wonderful Jesus!

    Thank you Bones for creating an environment whereby we could be reminded of the glory, grace and power of the cross!

    You do see, don’t you, that he is saying that God once did say ‘sacrifice and offering, burnt offerings and offerings for sin I do not desire’, but in the Lamb Who was slain, He had a Son who was ready to declare ‘Behold I come to do Your will, O God’, a commitment which takes away the first decision to ignore sacrifice and offering by rejecting the people of the Law, to establish a new and living way, called the second covenant, by which Christ sacrificed Himself through blood once and for all!

    O God, that is good!

  83. You should read it from the Aramaic then, it gets even more brilliant. As to being born anew or from above, of course you must be born from above, where else could you have come from except the Father of Lights?

    To me it is quite simple – God offered Himself as a sacrifice, so the buck and the blame game stops with Him. He owns sin and death and the grave by conquest, not by purchase, and he tasted death once and for all with respect to all humanity.

    The principle of sacrifice is that one should die for another, since all die anyway. Abortion is sacrifice, so too is warfare. Laying down your life for another becomes real when you have been so utterly challenged by Love that you run out of answers and are left with only one option, to lay down your life and reckon yourself dead to sin but alive to righteousness.

    The reality of Jesus dying once for all remains a mystery until you have come to the point where you have nothing left to fight with, and you lay it all down and God takes over and the resurrection life of Jesus is made manifest in your life through faith.

    Jesus did not take it all so that we would not have to, it was more so that we could endure in His Might and His Power, being the New Covenant in His Blood which obliterates the note of condemnation against us.

    If however we sin, having this knowledge, then there is no more sacrifice for sin and what remains is the Power which is destined to destroy the works of the devil, never-the-less, your spirit shall be saved in the Day (light) of the Lord.

    In a way it is like a group of people bickering over who is going to pay when the One who has all says, “Mine is the recompense, I will repay”. It was an act of forgiveness, of reconciliation. Jesus said, “I’ll go, I’ll die for them, I will take their place so they can be with Me in My place.”

    So a completely innocent one who should be the King Priest offering up the sacrifice, instead becomes the sacrifice, and puts an end to sacrifices and burnt offerings forever. In the same way He tightened the requirements of the Law such that NONE could ever possibly be justified by the Law. And then He died to fulfill the Law – but which Law? The Law of Love of the Law of Sin and Death? He fulfilled the Law of Love and so negated the Law of sin and death by enacting a higher law, a more perfect covenant.

    And yes Steve, I join with you in celebrating such an act of all consuming Love and humility and grace, for in our weakness is His Power perfected, as we too become transformed into the image of Love, from glory to glory.

    There is no contradiction in God, that is all in us, but it is more important to know what he says than what the scriptures appear to say, which has been the subject of lively debate for thousands of years. I am satisfied that He intends to reconcile all things to Himself – the danger is when we isolate scriptures which appear to support our thesis or hope and then twist them to adapt to fit.

    The price of sin is not death, that is the wages thereof. The COST of sin is separation from God, and this is the “price” that was “paid”. Kapiche?

  84. I just have to run that again.

    The PRICE of sin is not death, that is the WAGES thereof.

    The COST of sin is separation from God, and this is the “PRICE” that was “PAID”.

    Perhaps the only reason why we would think there was a literal “price” is our fixation with money…yes? After all, the love of it is the root of every evil…0(:->)

  85. 1. For the Law bore the shadow of the blessing destined to follow, it was not their human essence that they sacrificed, that is why they offered the sacrifices annually, for they could never sustain those on whose behalf they made the sacrifices.
    2. For if they were sustained, they would be at peace after their sacrifices, because their conscience would not allow them to think of sinning, those that were cleansed for a season.
    3. Except it was through the sacrifices that they remembered their sins every season.
    4. For the blood of bulls and sparrows cannot cleanse sins.
    5. Because of that when He entered in the universe, He said,

    “I am neither satisfied by sacrifices and offerings;
    … as I am coming in the flesh.
    6. “Nor am I asking for the ultimate holocaust (burnt offering).
    7. “That is when I said, ‘Behold, I am coming,
    … just as the Scriptures wrote about me,
    To do your will, O, God.’ ”

    8. From above He said that sacrifices, offerings and final holocausts I did not ask for on behalf of sins, those that were offered through the Law,
    9. And after that He said that, behold, I am coming to do the will of God. With this He retired the First [Covenant] so as to inaugurate the Second.
    10. For by His will we were sanctified, by the sacrifice of His body, Eashoa the Messiah did it in one season.
    11. For every leading King priest who rose to perform this service in his day, he would offer the very same sacrifices, those that could never cleanse sins.
    12. He, however, offered one sacrifice on behalf of sins, and He sat from the right of God forever.
    13. And He stands firm until His enemies are consecrated like the rug beneath His feet.
    14. For with one offering He preserved those who are sanctified through Him forever.
    15. The holy Spirit also witnessed on our behalf, who said,

    16. “This is the [New] Covenant
    … that I will give them after these days,” said the Lord,
    They shall bear the Law in their minds,
    … and on their hearts they shall write it,”
    17. “And their abominable acts
    … and their sins I shall not recall.”

    18. When there is the forgiveness of sins, however, there is no need for the offering on behalf of sins.

    19. Hence we have been given this entry into the holy sanctuary by the blood of Eashoa, with uncovered faces,
    20. And the road for life eternal that has been renewed by the entry through the two-sided door, which is His flesh.
    21. And we have a King Priest who is Lord of His House of God.
    22. Let us, therefore, accept the offering with a sincere heart and through the testament of faith, as our hearts are sprinkled [with His blood] and our consciences are cleansed of evil and our bodies are washed by the cleansing Waters.
    23. And let us become leavened by the celebration of our Hope without fail. For Faithful is He who sent us this Message of Hope.
    24. And let us look at one another with the enthusiasm of love and the performance of good deeds.
    25. And let us not leave our community, as is becoming the habit with certain people, except love one another from within,

  86. I’ve not twisted and adapted a thing, Ian. I have presented the scriptures in their full, unedited glory and asked you to read them for what they are.

    My comments, where I made them, matched the scriptures. I did not even analyse or have to explain them particularly. There is no need to. They are as clear as day.

    You have to actually perform some major spiritual gymnastics to produce your universalist error.

    By the way, being born again is being born from above. Born, first, of your mother, of the flesh, and again, of the Spirit of God. So, once, and again. How could you possibly miss this, unless you’re not looking?

  87. I notice you separate verse 18, but, when read in context, despite the translation, it says the same.

    Because Christ is the offering and the sacrifice is made, remission, or clearance from guilt, is complete, and, from then on, there is no necessity for further offering.

    It is finished.

    At the cross.

    Done.

    But now, in context with all scripture, it must be established how that clearance and salvation is acquired.

    The clearance from sin is achieved by the work of the cross. Christ has paid the price, the ransom price, not just the wages, and the slave to sin is offered liberty.

    It is declared, as the Word of Christ, by preaching the gospel, which is the heralding of the payment of the slave price, the ransom paid by Christ which gives liberty to all slaves of sin.

    It is offered by grace and received by faith.

    In other words, Christ says, “I have paid the ransom price of your slavery to sin. Would you like to be free, or remain in chains?”

    The slave says, by an act of his own will and acceptance, “Yes!” and is made free by his own belief that ransom price is paid, and given the mark of the freeman, the seal of the Spirit, the guarantee of eternal life and liberty in Christ, through faith, by his own confession of acceptance.

  88. Aaah, semantics are such fun…NOT!

    28. “Thus the Son of Man did not come to be ministered to, except to minister and give his life in Salvation on behalf of many.”

    Compare: For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve others and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

    18. As you know that it is neither silver, that tarnishes, nor gold that will save you from your empty works, those that you inherited from your ancestors,

    Compare: 18 For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver.

    Note in the Aramaic texts no mention of ransom as is in the Hellenized texts. The concept of a payment rather than a sacrifice has been leavened in…

  89. Ian, you have to read Scripture contextually and in conjunction with the whole canon.

    The truth of the Ransom is consistent throughout.

    I don’t care for your translation. It seems to change the context without regarding it. I would be very nervous about using it without reference to other translations, particularly literal translations like the Green’s or Young’s.

    “Even as the Son of man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.” GLT

    Ransomlutron
    1) the price for redeeming, ransom
    1a) paid for slaves, captives
    1b) for the ransom of life
    2) to liberate many from misery and the penalty of their sins

    It is absolutely consistent with what I have said.

  90. “Aaah, semantics are such fun…NOT!”

    I’ll say.

    Was Jesus Sent to Heal Man or to Heal God?: A Look at “Propitiation” vs. “Expiation”

    The Eastern Church has always understood Christ’s atoning work as that which accomplished true healing of the entire person; a reconstitution of human nature from that of death to that of life; a cleansing of sin rather than a substitution for the punishment of sin. The differing views between the East and West concerning the atonement are animated in large part by how the two sides understand a very important word in the Greek text of Scripture: “hilasterion” (ιλαστηριον).

    It is from hilasterion that our English Bibles usually derive the term “atonement” and more specifically “propitiation,” as in Romans 3:25 (“Whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed” NKJV).

    The discussion over the proper translation of hilasterion has been en vogue for quite some time in theological circles, and for good reason. If one chooses to interpret hilasterion as propitiation (literally: “to make favorable,” with the implication of placating or appeasing the deity) then the entire Western notion of substitutionary atonement fits well. However, if one chooses to interpret it as “expiation” (literally: “to make pious,” with the implication of removal or cleansing of sin), one can conceivably force a substitutionary view, but with much difficulty. Instead, expiation leads one to understand the atonement of Christ as a cleansing act of mercy and love rather than an act of pacifying God’s anger and punishment.

    The Orthodox Church understands Christ’s atonement in light of expiation, and has not changed this stance in over 20 centuries. Historically, one finds that hilasterion took on the translation of propitiation in the Latin Church after the rediscovery of Greek literature during the Renaissance. Propitiation was the usual Hellenistic rendition of hilasterion and reflected the ancient pagan Greek and Roman idea of placating the gods. For the Jews during the same period, hilasterion was understood as expiation. In a very real sense, when the Hebrew Scriptures were translated into Greek (known as the Septuagint), the Jews adopted a different understanding of hilasterion which complied with their Hebrew notion of atonement (often the term “kaphar,” literally meaning: “to wipe out,” and not merely “to cover up,” as found in many Latin commentators). One will find this translation trend in Rabbinic literature and in the English version of Hebrew Tanakh. The Apostles and early Church Fathers carried on this understanding and it became the paradigm for which they understood Christ’s atonement, hence its dominance in Orthodox theology; and hence why the Satisfaction Theory of the Atonement doesn’t make its way into the Roman Catholic conscience until Anselm – over 1000 years into the story, and the Penal Substitutionary Theory of the Atonement does not make its way into the Western Church conscience until the Reformation – over 1500 years into the story.

    For the Orthodox, Christ’s work on the cross was necessary, not to satisfy an angry God, but to effect a reconstitution of human nature—to bring about a literal change in human ontology. Christ’s death and resurrection joined human nature with God’s nature. I recently came across an ancient Orthodox hymn of praise which beautifully captures this reality:

    “The Lord united two natures; He does not separate them anymore: human and divine. He does not separate them anymore: God and man—One Person. In both respects undiminished, the God-man and Savior” (Prologue of Ohrid, Feb 28th reading).

    For me, the doctrine of the incarnation of Christ clarifies Christ’s atoning work better than any other interpretive method. The purpose of God taking on human flesh was to join human nature with the divine nature, a union that was lost by Adam and Eve in the primordial garden. Mankind needed not only forgiveness of sin but also salvation from an ontological constitution of death in their very beings; according to Romans 5:12, it was death, and not sin-guilt, which spread to all mankind due to Adam’s sin. By reconstituting human nature with the life of God mankind once again had the potential to become “partakers of the divine nature” (2Peter 1:4). This understanding of salvation—as a living and dynamic reality—allows the Orthodox mind to conceive of ‘working out one’s salvation’ without falling into the trap of ‘works righteousness’ (a phrase that has become a doctrinal boogieman for many Protestants); the general Reformed Protestant view of salvation as a static event in which the believer is “once saved, always saved,” forces the false dichotomy of grace vs. works into the believer’s theology of salvation, but I digress.

    Under the view of expiation a person is called to become truly united with God—he or she is called to participate in the great and heavenly re-union. Conversely, under the view of propitiation a person is called to merely accept Jesus and to have righteousness ‘imputed’ or ‘declared’ over him or her. Thus salvation is seen as a passive, one-time event in which, after confession and/or baptism into Christ is accomplished, the person plays no effective role in the relationship.

    The New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology summarizes well the differing approaches of propitiation and expiation:

    “In discussing reconciliation and atonement it has become customary to draw a distinction between propitiation and expiation. In propitiation the action is directed towards God, or some other offended person. The underlying purpose is to change God’s attitude from one of wrath to one of good will and favor. In the case of expiation, on the other hand, the action is directed towards that which has caused the breakdown in the relationship… In short, propitiation is directed towards the offended person, whereas expiation is concerned with nullifying the offensive act” (DNTT, Vol. III, p. 151).

    I know that much has been left unsaid in this brief article, but in closing I’d like to offer an illustration that aided me significantly when I was first attempting to adjust my theological paradigm to this new found understanding of Christ’s atonement. One can think of Christ’s blood as expiation similar to a healing antibiotic when applied to an infection (in this case, that of death and sin). When the blood of Christ is applied to a repentant believer it acts not as a covering that conceals the Father’s view of the believer, as is often taught in the West, but rather it acts to heal, to remove, to expunge the illness of death and sin from the believer—conforming the believer to the image of Christ. This is why the Scriptures continually refer to Christ’s blood as that which “cleanses sin” (1Jn 1:7), as the “washing of sin” (Rev 3:25), as that which “cleanses conscience” (Heb 9:14), and the “washing of regeneration” (Titus 3:15). The object of concern for Christ’s blood was not to change the mind of the Father but to change the condition of fallen man. God sent His Son to die for mankind not so that He could love us, but rather because He already loved us (John 3:16, Rom 5:8).

    http://ehyde.wordpress.com/2012/02/29/was-jesus-sent-to-heal-man-or-to-heal-god-a-look-at-propitiation-vs-expiation/

  91. Wow Bones – that is amazing exegesis and it does not EX Jesus at all! Now I am seeing ever more clearly why God told me the Truth would come out of the Orthodox Church and that what was largely taught in the West was whacky, leavened, contradictory, inconsistent, and just plain heresy in many ways – doctrines of devils – the twisted works of twisted workers. It takes a lot of unraveling as the author says, to encompass this NEW reality of Christ when what you are used to is in essence OLD (and dead).

    I guess the reason why the Orthodox message has been buried in the West is that is it not conducive to the business of guilt and propitiation with which Western Christianity has become associated, and which is largely of Babylon and Edom. When I first encountered the Aramaic scriptures it was like a breath of fresh air, and one by one the old Eye-cons have been replaced by the HOPE or ICON of JESUS and of being transformed into that same image.

    The part that is largely missing in the West is CONVERSION – of actually being transformed – of working out your salvation – and this is why so many Westerners backslide.

    A while back the Lord said this to me, “Don’t make mechanisms out of metaphors or systems out of similes.” Could it be that God has couched it in terms you would understand even if it is not literal? I mean do you cast your pearls before swine? Pearls are our coping mechanisms, our wisdom, our value system. So is there a literal book or ledger to be satisfied? A literal debt to be paid? A specific obligation with a known value? Or is it the principle of indebtedness? Jesus illustrated this with the servant whose unremittable debt was rescinded, wiped clean, yet would not himself forgive a fellow servant and so was made to pay every last penny of an unpayable debt.

    How can one pay and unpayable debt? Again, it is a metaphor, and we may become astute at explaining, even masters of metaphor, and yet miss the meat of the message while ‘measuring’ the minutiae.

    Jesus spoke in METAPHORS (meat-a-fors?) so that while seeing, they may not see and haring they may not hear, lest they understand and make demands of God to be healed. First you have to recognize that the sickness of sin is to be obliterated rather than tolerated…the Law id to manage the disease, grace is to eradicate it.

    Again what messes up the message is the sheer inability of Xians to encompass the deeper issues of faith – such as your eternal self being seated from the right of God – that the eternal Temple of God (New Jerusalem) is YOUR BODY – and that as with God, you can be in more than one place at a time – I know – I have been there on a few occasions when God saw fit to use this vessel thus.

    The Word became flesh and dwelt on earth, and was God manifest in the flesh, but God was also manifest in the flesh of the Roman soldiers who brutalized and nailed Him and he was in heaven and everywhere else at the same time, in fact in every time.

    It pleased God to offer up His own Son of behalf of Man, so to conquer the FEAR OF DEATH which had held Mankind in bondage to death. Now death has no sting, no torment.

    God granted me a revelation of Him on the Cross as I was given to “be” the soldier hammering in a nail as Jesus looked at me with eyes full of compassion and willed me to continue even though I fought not to through hot tears, but God’s intention shall not and will never be thwarted. He is just one step ahead of everyone…

    Where there is delusion is that the Bible can form the bars of a mental prison from which perspective you see and you can be so convinced as to the meaning thereof that it takes some degree of dislocation or disaster to get you to look anew, and to realize that it is about relationship rather than reading.

    Jesus went to the lowest low and to the highest high so that he might fill all things with Himself – He set the boundaries of reality in and by His limitless grace – you cannot go under, over, beside, He is all and in all. There is no escape – resistance is futile! We are all combined in disobedience,so that He might be merciful to all.

  92. OK Steve, Vines says lutron literally means “A means of loosing” from Luo, to loose. I will check what the Aramaic word is. It implies equivalency – reconciliation – from being a slave to being free, and we know that in Christ there is neither bond nor free, so the blood makes us all the same – same blood – same DNA – same LIFE – same essence! His blood in our “house” means death will pass us over.

    So if there is no actual amount to be payed, but rather the principle of indebtedness, then I posit that is what needs to be addressed,or reconciled. We think carnally because we are in this flesh, and we think in terms of debt from a worldly perspective of accountancy, of an actual payment and of keeping ledgers on debtors, whereas God is about LOOSING THE DEBTOR from his debts, which cannot be paid anyway, for there is no payment sufficient, but rather a remitting or releasing of the debt by grace – the debt ceases to exist EXCEPT if you hold someone else in debt…then it comes back full force…but it is also talking of this earthly life…for what is sown in the flesh is reaped in the flesh…temporal salvation is the effect or result of the grasping of eternal salvation…and eternal salvation was settled in Christ before the foundation of the worlds.

    As to what happens after physical death, I am minded of a Pente Pastor who on the night he passed, appeared to me in vision of being in a dark place with a wrathful countenance! In the morning, I asked the Lord why he had showed me this scene and heard that “He has just found out most of what he knew was wrong”. Now this guy could out-Steve Steve – I mean he knew the Bible inside out, but he did not really know Jesus. Three months later I saw him enter Glory – and what a welcoming home he received. Now you can call me crazy, delusional, whatever, but I know what I saw and I know what God was teaching me thereby…that the only thing I really know is what is revealed by Him and not that which is discovered by me and to put it all on the altar and to let Him burn up that which is wood, hay, and stubble…

    You have to ask yourself, do I know Jesus or do I THINK I know the scriptures? You search the scriptures looking for Him when he is merely a heart beat…and a veil away…let Him lead you to the scriptures and tell you what they really mean…

  93. I didn’t realise there were three universalists resident.

    Bones, it’s not actually a game. It’s certainly not over because I acknowledge forgiveness as being from God.

    What is at stake here, from you stand point, is the heresy you are proposing. I would have thought that rather serious.

    Still, if you want to persist, who am I to interfere?

    I’m curious, though, why you abhor the blood yet prescribe transubstantiation.

  94. Hold on just one cotton pickin’ minute – I am NOT a Universalist but I am on a Universal List. The separation is between flesh and spirit, between sin and righteousness. I do not for my part pretend to know it all, and I still have lots of questions pending before the Lord, but we have to be in the right mind to receive them – when the student is ready, then the Teacher may teach.

    What we all say is only mildly different, not wildly so and we all love the same Lord, yes? But as He said to me once (ouch) “Why do you call me Lord and do not the thing that I say?” [Being to love, one to another, even as I first loved you.”]

    If we really do love Jesus then we will love one another enough to believe for the best for one another, and the best is that we should have the mind of Christ in all things. I propose that we agree that whosoever needs to hear whatsoever shall do so from the Teacher within, the Holy Spirit of Almighty God, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the God of Israel and of the Saints in Light, the God of heaven and earth. Just so as we know who we are talking about, yes? Let’s just agree that He is Lord and He shall teach and confute and confound and confront.

    But I do find these debates incredibly stimulating and rewarding, i always come out having learned something, and what is most comforting to me in this recent discourse is to see that the Orthodox Church has such a pure stream of revelation. No wonder the Jews afflicted Russia with Communism! But I am WAY too much of an iconoclast to get drawn into any iconic idolatry or transubstantiation, whatever the hell that is…drinking blood is for Vampires and Catholics…

  95. One thing I do wonder about Steve, is what happens with the kind of sick, sordid souls who engage in Satanic sacrifices, the drinking of human blood (Ambrosia) and pedophilia, bestiality etc? Just what happens to people so given over to evil there is no light in them – they are like black holes?

    I met one once who was like evil incarnate – it really disturbed me that one could manifest such a presence of pure evil. And he was an Ambassador from Belgium!

    But then I have heard of people who have engaged in such matters and have then been set free, so where do we go with that? Is there anything God cannot or will not forgive?

    Actually, there is, and that is the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit,but few understand that one and so many in the West live in fear of POSSIBLY having blasphemed the Spirit – well the good news is most have – and the “bad” news is that only Jesus can walk you through the minefields of your own judgments! LOL.

  96. So God, who doesn’t need a sacrifice to forgive sin, chose to sacrifice God, to save humanity from God’s wrath as God was unable to forgive their sin which He hates.

  97. So God, who doesn’t need a sacrifice to forgive sin, chose to sacrifice God, to save humanity from God’s wrath as God was unable to forgive their sin which He hates.>/blockquote>

    Finally, you get it! Simple isn’t it once you suspend all credulity!

  98. I don’t think you actually grasp Scripture, either of you, and that can only mean one thing.

    1 Corinthians 2:14-16
    But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God:for they are foolishness unto him:neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

  99. “Sin is an illness that needs healing. Passions are inner human sufferings that lead people to do things that separate them from God (becomes sin).”

    Jesus didn’t die to satisfy an angry God.

    An interview with Archbishop Lazar Puhalo by OMNI Television host Randall Mark, on the understanding of God, Salvationt,religion morality and science from eastern orthodox christian view.

  100. So when you claimed to be orthodox, Bones, you meant you had turned Eastern Orthodox. Now I understand. I’m amazed how far from truth they’ve drifted, the weakness of their doctrine.

    What I have learned from this is that orthodoxy is relative and that there are many who claim it.

  101. What I have learned from this is that orthodoxy is relative and that there are many who claim it.

    Yep. What else does that tell you? Does it suggest that if all claim orthodoxy but all believe a variety of different things then possibly orthodoxy is a much larger family than you and Philip and Q and Margot and Roundhouse have previously thought it to be?

    Or…maybe we’re all wrong…and all that really ultimately matters is that you love God and love your neighbours? Novel idea that one.

  102. Last night I happened to watch a small portion of a local “Christian” TV production, wherein the Pastor was using the same old twisted logic to use scripture to screw offerings out of reluctant Xians. I remembered how 12yrs ago in a church setting, the “pastor” had been using “sowing and reaping” a la Galatians 5. As he preached his message, it suddenly came to me that he did not know what he was talking about and was deeply in error – and out of my mouth, quietly, just loud enough so he could hear it, came, “That is not what that means.”

    It was prophetic, it was not my voice per se, neither did I know what it meant, but knew beyond doubt that he did not know and what was more, he was using twisted scripture to screw offerings.

    His immediate response was to stop mid-sentence and look astonished and say, “You are right” and promptly stopped. We spoke afterwards and I told him that while I did not know how he was wrong, I simply knew at the moment that he was, and he too had heard in his heart – deep called to deep – and he stopped dead in his tracks. In time this man would be set free from much that was error, but then hopped into bed with the Creflo Dollar family (of the mammon mafia).

    It was about that time that God introduced me to the translational work of Victor Alexander and his Aramaic Bible project. The hardest part was unraveling the twisted works of the devil with the doctrines I had been taught and tortured by. In time it was like I was having to unlearn my Western perspective and adopt a more Eastern viewpoint – like a mirror – the message the Western Church has championed is a darkened reflection of the Truth.

    Yes Steve the things of the Spirit are off limits to the natural man, but I have noticed in Greg quite a shift in emphasis and indeed attitude, as if One has been talking with him and he is seeing that there is so much that we do not see, largely due to having been blindly led by blind guides.

    The hardest part is to realize that the message God has writ upon your heart, when viewed in the mirror of His manifestation, seems back to front – like trying to read your tee shirt slogan in the mirror. Again, a metaphor, but that is what they are phor, yes?

    Steve, could it be that you are actually, now let me see, how can I put this, wrong? When confronted by Jesus Himself and told that everything I knew was basically a load of old bollocks and I would have to forsake all and learn anew, I threw it all on the altar – what else was there to do? I was to find out that virtually everything I thought I knew about Jesus and redemption was wrong – skewed, twisted, and wrong.

    The Lord challenged me a while back with this, “Is your investment in being right or in being righteous?”

    We pour much of our soul and life into being right to affirm our righteousness, as if what we know is more important than who, but our righteousness is credited to us as an eternal deposit, an eternal value, the treasure of heaven. Then we make the mistake of grabbing the baton and running with it until all we do is to run off at the mouth, but Jesus said “Because you say that you see, you are yet blind” – you have to see with the eyes of faith, with His eyes and to have His mind and then you can rightly read the message which is writ on your heart and begin to manifest the same and the people will run to that light.

    I do not pretend to have attained, but I press on toward the MARK that Jesus is, I cannot help myself, I am compelled by the goads of love to finish this race – but one thing I have found is, that if you have the goods, people will know it, and they will either hate you or love you, but ambivalent they are not – for if they hate the Son, they will hate the servant.

    And just to remind you guys, the way to identify the spirit of antichrist is that “They are of the world, and the world heeds them.” If you follow Jesus as you ought, then the world will hate you and persecute you, and this to me is in no small part the reason why the heartland of faith, the Holy Lands, are inflamed and why so many Eastern believers are beleaguered and set upon.

    My wife has a simple theology, it goes something like “God is, so just get over it, OK?” In a crazy quirk of fate, it was me that had the Leviathan spirit and she who first came to know the Lord intimately and it was she who prompted me to seek to know Him, instead of to know good and evil – sort of a reverse fall. LOL.

    Her SEED crushed my head, and now He is my HEAD! LOL.

  103. I’m not attributing any kind of authenticity to you or Bones, Greg. You are obviously and patently wrong in your understanding of the work of the cross, one of the key doctrines in Scripture.

    I am amazed at the way Bones has brazenly mocked God and slandered the Scripture I presented which clearly sets out doctrine that clearly demonstrates what Christ did at the cross, who the Ransom is, why it was given, and the truth about the blood, the Propitiation and the sacrifice.

    I presented so much Biblical evidence in this thread that it is beyond dispute and yet you chose not only to completely ignore the Biblical record but to scoff at the very Scripture presented in agreement with Bones’ derision of the Word of God.

    My observation of orthodoxy’s relativity isn’t at all an acceptance of the lack of belief and understanding that you are attesting to with your nodding agreement with Bones’ cut’n’paste commentary, which completely ignores key passages of Scripture to such an extent that I am surprised anyone with any kind of Biblical understanding of the work of the cross would not see right through it at a glance.

    Ian has so many different points of view I am not even sure of what he thinks, frankly. But I know this, it isn’t Bible.

  104. Steve can’t get it out of his head that god isn’t angry with all of humanity for something Adam was supposed to have done millenia ago.

    That’s some grudge Steve’s god’s holding onto.

    I like that Orthodox archbishop.

    Atheism is a rejection of the Western god. The angry, violent god who needs blood sacrifices to be appeased.

    Not Jesus at all.

    When you look at that theology you realise that it is clearly unorthodox. At no stage could you say that that god is revealed through Jesus of Nazareth.

  105. We are always acceptable to God.

    At what stage was the son in the Prodigal son unacceptable to his Father.. He was always acceptable to Him even before he said he was sorry. The Father’s love and forgiveness was there from when he took his money and left.

    We’re acceptable to God even BEFORE we repent.

  106. [off topic, inconsiderate, self-centred and liable to detour thread]

    Look, seriously, Zoronymous, why no stop behaving like a toddler and join in the adult conversation here. I’m certain you couldn’t possibly agree with what Bones and Greg are asserting here, could you?

  107. So now Bones blames the rise of atheism on the God of the Bible.

    Yet atheism claims no association with any god, any deity or any religious connection whatsoever. They are not so much against a particular god but any idea that there is any kind of religious entity at all.

    What Bones would like, to appease his personal doubts, fear and unbelief which have replaced God and His Word, and even his own conscience, as his guide in life, is a god who lets everyone into His Presence in the Age to Come regardless of all and anything which is sin, including the primary sin of rejection, in their lifetime, of Christ the Son, the Word, of God Himself, which Jesus states to be the one thing by which men condemn themselves.

    He renames the God of the Bible ‘the western god’ and claims that the Eastern Orthodox Church is the authentic messenger of the Word, when, in fact, it is patently clear that they have departed as far from Scripture as the Roman Catholic Church, only in a completely different direction.

    Bones rejects Scripture which clearly states the work of the cross in paying the ransom, redemption, propitiation and proffers salvation.

    Bons rejects the necessity of the cross, the death and resurrection of Christ by asserting that God forgives regardless of faith, that God redeems regardless of His own words which declared that the life of a man is in the blood, that the wages of sin is death, and that only through blood can remission for sin take place.

    Bones calls God evil and wicked because the Bible declares His justice, judgment and grace to operate in a certain way which Bones personally objects to on the basis that he can’t believe it.

    Bones has not once responded to the scripture I produced on this thread except to put up rejecting theology from the Eastern Orthodox Church which clearly denies authentic teaching on the work of the cross.

    The only scripture Bones produced was taken completely out of context and used as a pretext. Rather than accept the Word of God as it is written and at face value, he produces verses which are speaking of something completely different, of the sacrifice of animals, not the substitutionary act of Christ.

    I even showed, from Hebrews, how God had dealt with the very issue of sacrifice and what he had said about it in accepting His Son’s voluntary decision to fulfil His will by being the Lamb slain before the foundation of the earth, which is an extraordinary passage of scripture that completely annihilates Bones’ claim that God did not require the Son as a sacrifice. The fact is that Jesus was the sacrificial Lamb who shed His blood for the remission of our sin.

  108. Bons rejects the necessity of the cross, the death and resurrection of Christ by asserting that God forgives regardless of faith, that God redeems regardless of His own words which declared that the life of a man is in the blood, that the wages of sin is death, and that only through blood can remission for sin take place.

    No one rejects the necessity of the cross Steve….just your interpretation of why it was necessary….but you are right, the life of man is in the blood…which is already spilt for the remission of sins for all! It’s done buddy.

  109. So I can live any way I want, do sex, drugs and rock and roll, womanise, adulterise, steal, lie and carry on, deny Christ, set up an atheist society, shoot a few people who claim to be Christians and such like, and I’ll be saved?

  110. Of course in all your quotes there are a whole lot of presuppositions formed from your own bias that you just take as fact and which displays a Sunday School reading of the Bible.

    Jesus was an offering to who?

    Jesus paid a ransom to who?

    Who was holding humanity captive to be paid a ransom?

    We were bought with a price. The price was paid to who?

    Jesus was sacrificed as a Lamb to who?

    Who/what are we redeemed from?

    We are condemned by who?

    What has Jesus conquered?

    Jesus has the keys of what?

    Who did God give Jesus up to?

    Does God say if you eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil that he will kill them?

    Or is their death a natural product from being cut off from the God of Life?

    What is the result and consequence of sin?

    Hosea 13:14

    14 “I will deliver this (or ransom) people from the power of the grave;
    I will redeem them from death.
    Where, O death, are your plagues?
    Where, O grave, is your destruction?

    Matthew 27:50-53

    50 And when Jesus had cried out again in a loud voice, he gave up his spirit.

    51 At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom. The earth shook, the rocks split 52 and the tombs broke open. The bodies of many holy people who had died were raised to life. 53 They came out of the tombs after Jesus’ resurrection and[e] went into the holy city and appeared to many people.

    John 10:10

    10 The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.

    John 11:25

    25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;

    Romans 8:31-39

    31 What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son, but gave him up for us all—how will he not also, along with him, graciously give us all things? 33 Who will bring any charge against those whom God has chosen? It is God who justifies. 34 Who then is the one who condemns? No one. Christ Jesus who died—more than that, who was raised to life—is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written:

    “For your sake we face death all day long;
    we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”[j]

    37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[k] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Romans 14:7-9

    7 For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. 8 If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9 For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.

    1 Cor 15

    20 But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. 21 For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. 22 For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. 23 But each in turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when he comes, those who belong to him. 24 Then the end will come, when he hands over the kingdom to God the Father after he has destroyed all dominion, authority and power. 25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet. 26 The last enemy to be destroyed is death. 27 For he “has put everything under his feet.”[c]

    54 When the perishable has been clothed with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality, then the saying that is written will come true: “Death has been swallowed up in victory.”[h]

    55 “Where, O death, is your victory?
    Where, O death, is your sting?”[i]
    56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. 57 But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

    Hebrews 2:9

    9 But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.

    Revelation 1:18

    18 I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.

    Jesus offered Himself as a ransom/sacrifice/offering to DEATH itself.

    Not to the Father nor to Satan.

    He didn’t do it to make us acceptable to God, He did it for us.

  111. Did Jesus die to satisfy God’s wrath against humanity?

    A Biblical View of Christ’s Death

    The central tenet of Orthodox sotieriology is the incarnation of the Lord Jesus Christ. Every other part of Orthodoxy stems from it. Clark Carlton, noted Orthodox theologian, writes, “In becoming man, Christ assumed human nature in its entirety. Because man is created in the image of the Holy Trinity, each human being sums up within himself the totality of human nature. Thus, Christ as man is united essentially to every man. He is one with the Father and the Holy Spirit according to His divinity, and one with each of us according to His humanity.” (Carlton, 105) The Ecumenical Council of Chalcedon says likewise, “We all with one accord teach men to acknowledge one and the same Son, our Lord Jesus Christ, at once complete in Godhead and complete in manhood, truly God and truly man, consisting also of a reasonable soul and body; of one substance with the Father as regards his Godhood, and at the same time of one substance with us as regards his manhood…”

    Hence, because of the incarnation, a path is open for union with God through Jesus Christ. Union with Christ’s life is the essence of salvation. In order to make this union possible, the Lord went to the Cross for our sins. Protestants believe that Christ, in going to the Cross, took upon the full wrath of God the Father for the sins of humanity, and provided a perfect righteousness to be imputed to those who place trust in His work on the Cross. Because of this righteousness, those who have placed faith in Him are allowed access into Heaven.

    Orthodox Christians, by contrast, believe that Christ’s death had nothing to do with satisfying the wrath of God. Rather, Christ’s death served two main purposes. First, Jesus Christ united Himself with humanity in all of its sufferings, sorrows, and pains. He took upon Himself the natural consequence of man’s sin, that is, suffering, rather than the wrath of God the Father for our sins. Second, through His death, Christ annihilated the bonds of death, and in doing so, destroyed the kingdom of Satan.

    Protestants appeal to a variety of texts in attempting to prove penal substitution and imputed righteousness. Perhaps foremost among this texts is St. Paul’s argument in

    Romans 3:25

    “…God put forward [Christ] as an (hilasterion) by his blood, to be received by faith.”

    In most Protestant translations, hilasterion is rendered “propitiation.” Propitiation would imply that Christ satisfied the wrath of God the Father on the Cross. However, New Testament scholar Stephen Finlan writes concerning this passage, “The hilasterion is the place where the impurity resulting from the sins of Israel is ritually cleansed once a year…what Paul is saying is that God has put forward Christ as a ‘mercy seat of faith’, not ‘an expiation’ [or] a ‘sacrifice of atonement’” [Finlan, 40] That is to say, Jesus Christ has been made the mercy seat for our sins. He is where Christians are purified. He is the place of our union with God, not the means of satisfying an angry Father.

    When St. Paul writes, “In his divine forbearance He passed over former sins”, he is not saying that God withheld punishment until Christ’s sacrifice. He is simply saying that He withheld the true purification until the “fullness of time had come”, as it is written in Galatians 4:4.

    Another key text used by Protestants to demonstrate the propitiatory nature of Christ’s sacrifice is 2 Corinthians 5:21. St. Paul writes,

    “For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.”

    According to the Protestant interpretation, this passage references the double imputation. The sins of humanity (or the elect) are imputed to Christ, and Christ’s righteousness is imputed back. There are significant problems with this interpretation. According to the imputation view, Christ merely had sins imputed to Him, and imputed back righteousness. That is, this is a process extrinsic to us, not something that intrinsically changes us. However, St. Paul appeals in 2 Corinthians 5:20 to “be reconciled to God.” The Corinthians were recognized Christians. St. Paul tells them to be reconciled to God, and then declares that Christ was made sin so that we might become righteousness in Him. That is, by attaining close union with Christ, we actually become righteous over time. Because this is a command to already converted Christians, this reconciliation in Christ must be a process of transformation, not an event. Robert Sungenis, a Roman Catholic scholar, writes “The grammatical construction of 2 Cor. 5:21 does not necessarily treat the subordinate clause (‘in order that we might become the righteousness of God in Him’) as an actual or definite result of the main clause (‘He made the one not knowing sins to be sins on our behalf’). [The passage shows] a potential result in process rather than a punctiliar event.” [Sungenis, 322-3]

    Finlan notes that St. Paul is making reference to a scapegoat ritual in this passage. A scapegoat ritual is where the disease of a community is placed on the scapegoat, and it is destroyed, hence destroying the disease of the community. Seeing sin as a disease, St. Paul teaches that Christ has partaken of our disease on the Cross, and by His death has destroyed the disease. By participating in our pure scapegoat, we may actually become righteous in Him. [Finlan, 42-4] Related to this passage is Romans 8:3, which says that God “condemned sin in the flesh” in the person of Christ. This, like 2 Corinthians 5:21, has nothing to do with penal substitution. The passage says in full that “God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh.” Thus, God the Father sends God the Son, in the likeness of men, to partake of our own diseased flesh, so that He may destroy the disease and heal us.

    It is written in Romans 5:9 that

    “Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.”

    The question is first, what is the wrath of God? Second, in what sense are we saved from God’s wrath by Christ’s death. First, the wrath of God is not a wrath of passion, where the Lord has to let off steam against His enemies. When Scripture speaks of God’s wrath, it speaks of it in three ways. St. John Chrysostom spoke of the death of a man, saying “If he was a wicked man, do not mourn but rejoice, for he is no longer able to sin.” That is, God destroys certain men so that they do not fall even further out of communion with Him. Second, God’s wrath is a corrective wrath. God uses certain things as a demonstration so that other men may repent and come into communion with God. Third, God’s wrath is lack of communion with God. It is being in the presence of God while being out of communion with Him.

    The Prophet Daniel writes in Daniel 12:2,

    “Many of those who sleep in the dust of the earth shall awake, some to everlasting life, and some to shame and everlasting contempt.”

    There is one general resurrection of the dead, and some arise in communion with God, eternal life. The others arise out of communion with God, eternal shame and contempt. When Christ speaks of the fires of hell, this is not in a literal sense. Rather, it is representative of the shame one experiences being out of communion with God. Protestant scholars Habermas and Moreland concur, writing “Mental and physical anguish result from the sorrow and shame of the judgment of being forever relationally excluded from God, heaven, and so forth.” [Habermas, Moreland, 169-70] Clark Carlton explains Hell this way: “God’s immediate presence will be to those who love Him the very bliss of heaven, and to those who hate Him the very fire of hell.” [Carlton, 261]

    Understanding that the wrath of God is not an active hatred, but a term representing lack of communion with God, we can understand Romans 5:9. As seen in 2 Corinthians 5:20-21, we become righteous by being reconciled to God through union with Jesus Christ. Reconciliation to God is communion with God, the opposite of hell. Thus, Christ saves us from the wrath of God by bringing us into communion with God through His incarnation. St. Paul confirms this interpretation by bringing reconciliation in view in Romans 5:10, writing,

    “For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life.”

    Confirming this, St. Paul writes in Colossians 1:21-22 that,

    “You, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him.”

    God is reconciling Christians to Him constantly, purifying them.

    Another related function of Christ’s death is the destruction of the kingdom of death, ruled by the Evil One. Carlton writes, “By pouring out His most pure Blood upon the Cross, Christ not only blotted out the record of man’s sin, but overcame the power by which sin holds mankind captive.” [Carlton, 142] It is written in Hebrews 2:14 that

    “Since therefore the children share in flesh and blood, he himself likewise partook of the same things, that through death he might destroy the one who has the power of death, that is, the devil.”

    David DeSilva, noted New Testament scholar, writes concerning this passage, “Since the many children were subject to mortality, the Son also became subject to mortality in order to confront and defeat, through His own death, the devil who had used death as a tool for enslaving the human race.” [DeSilva, 118]

    In his first sermon, St. Peter preaches the essence of Christianity. He does not preach about imputed righteousness, Sola Fide, or penal substitution. Rather, speaking of Christ’s Cross, He cogently identifies the reason for the Lord’s death. He says in Acts 2:23-24 that

    “This Jesus, delivered up according to the definite plan and foreknowledge of God, you crucified and killed by the hands of lawless men. God raised him up, loosing the pangs of death, because it was not possible for him to be held by it.”

    Death cannot hold the very author of life. Because of this, when it attempted to hold God, God took it and destroyed it, bringing about His own resurrection. St. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 15:21-23,

    “For as by a man came death, by a man has come also the resurrection of the dead. For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ shall all be made alive. But each in his own order: Christ the firstfruits, then at his coming those who belong to Christ.”

    Christ, through His death, has broken death itself. Because He has destroyed death, the kingdom of Satan has fallen and the Church is advancing. The purpose of the Lord’s death has nothing to do with satisfying the wrath of God or shuffling righteousness files in a legal file cabinet. Christ, through His incarnation, death, and resurrection, crushes death, swings open the gates of eternal life, and provides us a means of accessing this life.

    http://orthodox-apologetics.blogspot.com.au/2011/02/biblical-view-of-christs-death.html

  112. “So I can live any way I want, do sex, drugs and rock and roll, womanise, adulterise, steal, lie and carry on, deny Christ, set up an atheist society, shoot a few people who claim to be Christians and such like, and I’ll be saved?”

    Your experience of God and His love will be like hell. For darkness cannot stand light.

  113. How does God display His wrath to humanity?

    Romans 1:18-32

    18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth [l]in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident [m]within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not [n]honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and [o]crawling creatures.

    24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for [p]a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed [q]forever. Amen.

    26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is [r]unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing [s]indecent acts and receiving in [t]their own persons the due penalty of their error.

    28 And just as they did not see fit [u]to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers, [v]haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.

    Paul does not speak of wrath in a context of punitive justice. Instead, we see that wrath is the act of God giving them over to their own passions (sufferings) and lust which lead to destruction (Romans 6:23) for those who have chosen to reject Him consistently.

    This is the context that must be used when interpreting all of the book of Romans. As there is no clearer example of wrath in any of his other epistles than this definition can be an interpretive norm for the rest of his epistles. We have no other reason from any other definition of wrath given by Paul to do otherwise.

  114. And that concept of God’s wrath fits in perfectly with Luke 15:11-32, the Prodigal Son.

    The Father allows His son to leave Him and lead a life of depravity which was spiralling to death and destruction until he comes to his senses.

    The Father waits, and loves and forgives and yearns for His son to return to Him.

  115. You included:

    John 11:25-26
    Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection, and the life:he that believeth in me, though he were dead, yet shall he live: And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?

    Well, the criteria is faith. “He that believes!”

    How will a person believe when he is dead?

    The wages of sin is death. Death comes because of sin. All have sinned. The blood of Jesus was shed for the remission of sin. In paying the price of our sin He conquered death, and the one who had power over death, that is, the devil.

    The prodigal returned of his own free will. The father was waiting, but he did not pursue him. The prodigal came repentant saying he would be a servant in his father’s house if he would receive him. The father gave him full sonship and inheritance. That is the act of our Father, but it is we who return to Him through repentance.

    How will the dead who died in their sins repent and turn?

    God has given the criteria for salvation. It is by grace through faith. It is not of our own works, lest we boast. It is not earned, because we all fell short. It is not bought because our guilt made our blood forfeit.

    That is why Jesus was sent. That is why blood had to be shed. That is why a death had to be died. That is why a grave was entered. That is why the resurrection was essential.

  116. And what of baptism, which Jesus said must be entered to fulfil all righteousness? Jesus Himself entered the waters of baptism, saying He must do so to fulfil righteousness.

    Then you say wrath is executed on earth and men pay the price of their own sins through being given over to delusion. Wy then did Jesus pay for anything if they paid for their own sins by being handed over to depravity?

    In their depravity they affect thousands maybe millions of other people. Is this the act of justice? No He hands them over to delusion and depravity because they have rejected Him.

    In Thessalonians Paul speaks of the wrath to come, and that believers are not reserved for it.

    1 Thessalonians 5:1-10
    Chapter 5
    But of the times and the seasons, brethren, ye have no need that I write unto you. For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. For when they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light, and the children of the day:we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others; but let us watch and be sober. For they that sleep sleep in the night; and they that be drunken are drunken in the night. But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation. For God hath not appointed us to wrath, but to obtain salvation by our Lord Jesus Christ, Who died for us, that, whether we wake or sleep, we should live together with him.

    Context.

  117. What’s with the KJV?

    5 Now as to the times and the epochs, brethren, you have no need of anything to be written to you. 2 For you yourselves know full well that the day of the Lord [a]will come just like a thief in the night. 3 While they are saying, “Peace and safety!” then [b]destruction [c]will come upon them suddenly like labor pains upon a woman with child, and they will not escape. 4 But you, brethren, are not in darkness, that the day would overtake you [d]like a thief; 5 for you are all sons of light and sons of day. We are not of night nor of darkness; 6 so then let us not sleep as [e]others do, but let us be alert and [f]sober. 7 For those who sleep do their sleeping at night, and those who get drunk get drunk at night. 8 But since we are of the day, let us be [g]sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation. 9 For God has not destined us for wrath, but for obtaining salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ, 10 who died for us, so that whether we are awake or asleep, we will live together with Him. 11 Therefore [h]encourage one another and build up one another, just as you also are doing.

    A couple of things about these verses.

    1) What is the ‘destruction’ that Paul is referring to?

    The language in 1Thess 5 and 2 Thess 2 for that matter, includes terms like “peace and safety,” “labor pains,” and “counterfeit miracles,” and the idea that the time of the event is unknown, correspond to Jesus’s prediction about the destruction of Jerusalem in places like Matthew 24, Mark 13,and Luke 21. Although the exact time was unknown, Jesus said that it would happen to “this generation,” that is, the same generation that he was speaking to. History tells us that Jerusalem was destroyed in AD 70. Also both Jesus and Paul refer to the suddenness of the event.

    2) What is the ‘wrath’ of God Paul is referring to?

    This is to be read in conjunction with 1 Thess 2 where Paul says of the Jews that “the wrath of God has come upon them at last”, meaning the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. How is this the wrath of God? God gave them over to their own rebellion against the Romans and they suffered the consequences – death and destruction – which hardly anyone escaped.

  118. How will a person believe when he is dead?

    That of course is a question for you as well as all will be raised to be with God and judgement. When we are raised we will be conscious, thinking beings.

    Why then did Jesus pay for anything if they paid for their own sins by being handed over to depravity?

    Where is the idea that we have to “pay for our sins”?

    And who do we pay?

    1 Peter 1:18-19
    For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver. He paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.

    God paid the ransom to who?

    Not God that makes no sense.

    To Satan? Does God bargain with the devil?

    Answer: To Death.

    Hosea 13:14

    “I (The Lord) will ransom them from the power of the grave;[a]
    I will redeem them from death.
    O Death, I will be your plagues![b]
    O Grave,[c] I will be your destruction![d]

    Why did Jesus rise from the dead?

  119. “The prodigal returned of his own free will. The father was waiting, but he did not pursue him. The prodigal came repentant saying he would be a servant in his father’s house if he would receive him. The father gave him full sonship and inheritance. That is the act of our Father, but it is we who return to Him through repentance.”

    Are you a parent?

    He was already His son. He never stopped being his son even when he was sleeping with prostitutes. He gave him him over to his desires. The prodigal experienced metanoia (a change of mind) when he realised how far he had fallen and that he was better off with his Father. When the Father saw the son, the Father ran and kissed his son (Middle Eastern men never run btw) BEFORE His son said anything.

    He always loved His son.

    What father doesn’t?

  120. Which is why God sent His only begotten Son to redeem the fallen.

    Although he was a good father, and a father’s love is unconditional, that is far more than the prodigal’s father did.

    As Hebrews tells us, God gave His Son so that there would follow many sons.

    And you’ve got your ‘wraths’ in the wrong order. The first, in chapter 2 is different to the coming wrath of chapter 5. Besides which, Paul is talking to the Gentiles not the Jews of Jerusalem. He is addressing the Thessalonians.

  121. Steve the more this goes on the more Pharisaical your arguments seem to get – the parable of the prodigal speaks not only of the intention and love of the Father God, but it also speaks to your inner condition – simply put, the older brother is the conscience, the father the heart and the prodigal the ego.

    Trouble is, most Xian’s have an ID-entity crisis – they do not know who they really are – as Jesus said to Nicodemus, “Your are a leader (guide) of your people and you do not know this?”

    Your mother was the door by which you entered this life, and who is your mother except she that does the will of God, a vessel? But Jesus is the Door by which you enter HIS LIFE, His kingdom, His domain, His leadership.

    Simply put, that which arises out of the earth, the “Oros” is the flesh, and is also typified as a Sycamine, a Mulberry. a Fig, (all being of the Fig genus) and a mountain. The flesh is where unbelief resides and the kind of faith, the God kind, which deals with the oros, comes not out (is not made manifest) except by prayer and fasting.

    Now we are to command unbelief to be removed and cast into the sea of God’s forgetfulness, it is buried in baptism. But only we may speak to our own unbelief, and God has to grant repentance to the acknowledging of the Truth. If we are not ready for the Truth, then there is no possibility of repentance – God will simply leave you to your pig tucker until you come to the end of the line.

    That is what loving fathers do. The model we see so much of is the persecutor, victim, rescuer, which is the darkened reflection of the Father, the Son and the Spirit, and because of this, people see from the perspective of the fall until they see themselves in Christ, seated from the Right of Majesty on High.

    Because we had fathers who persecuted us, we grow up with a father image of a persecutor, who betimes was also a rescuer, and also a victim – in essence, we grow into or are conformed to the image of our OROS parents who produced this OROS child,and the god we know is the god of knowledge.

    But God put His Spirit in the child, the life hid in the heart, the SEED, and when the SEED was ready, God sends forth His Word and the SEED is activated by faith and begins to develop.

    We are transformed into the NEW image, yet not NEW but OLD, or AS AT THE BEGINNING, when God has a Lamb slain, even before ever there was is.

    The doctrine that says you are an empty earthen vessel with a God shaped hole and God comes along at a Hillsongs meeting an pops His Spirit in you and you are born again is nonsense! It is dispensationalism in action – it merely makes you an honorary Jew. Yes, you will get a spirit infusion there…but I don’t think it has much to do with God, more the spirit of the age or of the world, and hence why the world listens to them, for they are of the world.

    God once reminded me of how at the age of 7, I heard a man of grace explain what was in essence, looking back, a wholly Orthodox message of grace, love and acceptance, and I had believed him and had clicked with the image of the Father he was manifesting.

    God showed me how that the Life that was inside of me was exchanged, there was an exchange of nature at that moment and it was no longer I which lived but Christ which lives in me, as my God given conscience had been activated – the inner voice witnessed with the message and faith was activated. The SEED came alive, faith came by hearing, and the HEARING CAME BY THE WORD, and the WORD is NOT A BOOK, but the Man, Christ Jesus.

    We are BOOKS, epistles read of all men. The Jews understand this concept of the life you lead being the book you write, while our Book is the Lamb’s Ledger of Life, the Life written for us, and if you are struck from it, you get back to writing your own book and making offerings for sin, year after year, which never truly cleanse…and your second estate is worse than the first, when you knew nothing, before you were illuminated, before the light entered your life…

    God can cut off, burn, regraft – he will do what He must to bring MANY SONS to glory, to being glorified.

  122. Bones, the quote from Peter is quite different in the Aramaic, and I think rather dispels the ransom (pay off) notion completely (in my book – lol).

    17. And if He is your Father that you call Him, He that knows no favoritism and judges every human being according to their works, take care of your affairs through submission during the season of your settlement.
    18. As you know that it is neither silver, that tarnishes, nor gold (your offerings) that will save you from your empty works (outdated holocausts, sacrifices, obligations), those that you inherited from your ancestors,
    19. Except by the precious blood of the Lamb, without blemish or guilt, who is the Christ,

    In other words, you cannot ‘repay’ any debt to Me,for I gave you everything, but I will ‘repay’ your debt FOR you – “for mine is the recompense, I will repay” such that you owe Me nothing. You cannot buy off or pay off God and dead works are no substitute or recompense for sin, but faith works through submission are the right response to righteousness.

    Now compare this with the text you quoted:

    1 Peter 1:18-19
    For you know that God paid a ransom to save you from the empty life you inherited from your ancestors. And the ransom he paid was not mere gold or silver. He paid for you with the precious lifeblood of Christ, the sinless, spotless Lamb of God.

    Did you like that? I think that God did not “pay off death” as such, He “paid off” any DEBT to death, by contradicting and destroying the debt! And those debtors, for we are all debtors, who will not release their fellow servant’s debts, will be made to repay every penny of an unpayable debt.

    Why do you think the world is awash in a sea of DEBT? And this DEBT will lead to POVERTY which will lead to WAR and DEATH. It is all about DEBT and the world is awash with it and our lives are burdened by it, it is the mark of the beast, while being set free FROM ALL DEBT is the Mark of Jesus.

    The Love of Debt is the root of all evil! If we release our debtors, then where is the problem? Debt is THE problem.

    ITS ALL ABOUT DEBT – DEBT IS DEATHS POWER, ITS AUTHORITY – by conquering debt and triumphing over it, Jesus destroyed the power of debt which is the power of death. Hallelujah! BY the way, it would be very smart to get out of debt, any debt, and owe no man nothing except to love them…Jesus can find gold in a fishes mouth…that is what he thinks of debt…and taxes…

    No point trying to scrape the blood from the note so as to see what was writ upon it, the blood of Jesus has obliterated the note, made it illegible, and to deny this is to deny the blood, hence we are to know no man after the flesh (his blood) but by the blood of the Lamb.

    The life, the DNA, is in the blood. When you get that Holy Spirit blood exchange, it is His spiritual blood which flows in your veins, as you have a NEW NATURE, yet not NEW, but OLD, or as at the beginning, and I will keep hammering that point as it is the crux of the whole deal – God having a lamb slain from before time – if you do not get that, you do not get anything really. Its the starting point, the one foundation of faith given and set so that they we may build thereby, but again I say, God did not tell you to build a tower, but to count the cost, and to understand the indebtedness which means you will never complete YOUR tower, or your BOOK – chose your metaphor…

  123. Why not look at 1 Peter 1 in more context?

    17 And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear;
    18 knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers,
    19 but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot.
    20 He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you
    21 who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God.
    22 Since you have purified your souls in obeying the truth through the Spirit in sincere love of the brethren, love one another fervently with a pure heart,
    23 having been born again, not of corruptible seed but incorruptible, through the word of God which lives and abides forever,
    24 because “All flesh is as grass, And all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, And its flower falls away,
    25 But the word of the LORD endures forever.” Now this is the word which by the gospel was preached to you.

    Redeem – lutron,
    To release on receipt of ransom
    To redeem, librate by payment of ransom

    In English, redeem is to gain or regain possession of something in exchange for payment.

    Oh, how excellently well are the two words matched.

    Ransom is a payment or sum of money payed fro the release of a captive.

    That too is perfect. It fits lutron exactly.

    The New Testament was written in Greek, not Aramaic. Jesus may have spoken Aramaic, but He did not write the Testament. Others did, and it was handed down in Greek.

    he not only ransomed those who believe, He is the ransom.

    And born again of the incorruptible Word of God. Through faith.

    Anagennao – begat again, to produce again, to be born anew.

    Born again by he preaching of the incorruptible Word.

    Consistent. Throughout. The New Testament.

  124. Paul on the gospel:

    1 Corinthians
    15:1 ¶ Moreover, brethren, I declare to you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received and in which you stand,
    2 by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word which I preached to you–unless you believed in vain.
    3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
    4 and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures…

    Jesus on the gospel:

    Luke 24
    45 And He opened their understanding, that they might comprehend the Scriptures.
    46 Then He said to them, “Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day,
    47 “and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
    48 “And you are witnesses of these things.

    Jesus on the blood:

    “For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

    Paul on why Jesus was crucified:

    [Righteousness] shall be imputed to us who believe in Him who raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead, who was delivered up because of our offenses, and was raised because of our justification. Romans 4:23-24

    Again:

    Grace to you and peace from God the Father and our Lord Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for our sins, that He might deliver us from this present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen. Galatians 1:3-4

    Again:

    In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace… Ephesians 1:7

  125. Context and consistency – i quite agree – they are vital. I think Bnes will like the full chapter, especially the part which says we are born anew on account of the RESURRECTION.

    But tell me do, by what authority you say that the scriptures were written firstly in Koine Greek? There is a remnant of the Aramaic in Luke where Jesus cries out, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani! and gives up the ghost. By interpretation this means, “My God, My God, this is for why you have left me here (to deal with this). In other words, it was Jesus acknowledging His acceptance of God’s judgment and not questioning it, as is commonly supposed, just as He also accepted the cup, He did not question it except in the Hell-in-ized Versions. I asked Jesus why the Cross, why you? He said, “It had to be me, CREATION IS MY RESPONSIBILITY, only I could do it.” That’s good enough for this believer to believe. For my part, I am convinced that the Aramaic texts are the oldest, truest, purest and most reliable, and the stream of revelation of the Ancient Church of the East is the most reliable and correct, and that the way the WC see it, is largely 180 degrees opposed to the Truth, but that this too shall change, and will split the church right down the middle into the eastern mind and the Western mind and Light shall come from the East to the West.

    1 Peter 1
    1. Peter, the apostle of Jesus Christ, to the chosen and the settlers that are sown in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithymia,
    2. Those that were chosen by the Prescience of God the Father, through the Holy Spirit, to be the adherents and to sprinkle the blood of Jesus Christ — may blessings and peace proliferate among you.

    3. Blessed is the God our Father and Lord Jesus Christ, He Who out of His Providential generosity gave us a new birth from the beginning, through the Resurrection of Jesus Christ, so as we may have the hope of everlasting life,
    4. And the Inheritance that is immutable, undefileable and unspoileable, that which is consecrated for you in heaven.
    5. While you are guarded by the power of God and through the Faith of life everlasting that you are blessed with revealing in the final ages.*
    6. Through which you may be overjoyed forever,* even though in this short season you may be oppressed by changing circumstances that will impinge themselves upon you.
    7. So much so, that the communion of your faith is revealed, that which is of greater value than the purified gold forged in the fire for benediction and glorification and honor, through the revelation of Jesus Christ,
    8. He Whom you did not see and yet loved, and by whose faith you sermonize, with joy, a glorification that cannot be described,
    9. As you receive the recompense of your faith, which is the Salvation* of your souls.
    10. That Salvation* upon whose heels the prophets followed, as they prophesied regarding the blessing that was destined to be vouchsafed you.
    11. And they had a premonition about the season in which the Spirit of Christ that abided in them would appear and be attested, as His passion* and glorification afterwards were predestined.
    12. And all their premonitions were revealed to them, because even though it was within themselves that they wanted to understand, it was for us that they prophesied; this is what is being revealed to you now by those who preach this Hope to you through the holy Spirit that was sent from heaven; imagine, even the heralding angels yearned to know when these prophesies would be fulfilled.*

    13. Because of that set your conscience straight,* and be mature in your awareness, and preach about the joy that came upon you by the revelation of our Lord Jesus Christ,
    14. Like obedient children, and do not be part of the old yearnings. Those things that you yearned for without knowing.
    15. Except be holy in all your affairs,* as holy is He that Called you.
    16. For it is written [in Scriptures,]

    “May you be holy, whereas I am also holy.”

    17. And if He is your Father that you call Him, He that knows no favoritism and judges every human being according to their works, take care of your affairs through submission during the season of your settlement.
    18. As you know that it is neither silver, that tarnishes, nor gold that will save you from your empty works, those that you inherited from your ancestors,
    19. Except by the precious blood of the Lamb, without blemish or guilt, who is the Christ,
    20. Who was from the beginning chosen for this, before the foundations of the universe, and was revealed at the end of the ages for your sake,
    21. Those of you that believed in God through His power,* who raised Him from the dead,* and glorified Him,* so as your faith and Hope may be in God.
    22. So as your souls may be sanctified by heeding the Truth, and filled with love that is not hypocritical, that you may love one another with a pure and mature heart,
    23. Like human beings who are born anew,* born not from the seed that becomes extinct,* except of the seed that does not become extinct, by the living Manifestation of God in the resurrection to eternal life.
    24. Because all flesh is like a weed and grows like wild brush in a field. the weed dries and the wild brush withers,
    25. And the Manifestation of God stands forever.* And this is that Manifestation for Whom you Hoped. *1:4 Lit. Ar. id.: “Seasons.”
    *1:6 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “To the end of the universe.”
    *1:9 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “The lives of your breath,” or everlasting lives.
    *1:10 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Everlasting life.”
    *1:11 Lit. Ar. id.: “Sorrows.”
    *1:12 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction: “And it was revealed to them all the premonition they had, because even though their own souls they wanted, except for us they prophesied, these that now are revealed to you, by the hand of these extenders of hope, by the holy Spirit that is sent from heaven, that through them, by these, extremely desirous were even the angels that heralded you.”
    *1:13 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “Wrap the backs of your consciences.”
    *1:15 Lit. Ar. id.: “Walks.”
    *1:18 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “Currency that wears out.”
    *1:21.1 Lit. Ar. expression: “By His hand.”
    *1:21.2 Lit. Ar. id.: “The house of the dead.”
    *1:21.3 Lit. Ar. id.: “Gave Him glorification.”
    *1:23.1 Lit. Ar. id.: “Born from the beginning.”
    *1:23.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Wears out.”
    *1:25 Lit. Ar. id.: “To the end of the universe.”

    The consistent theme of the New Testament is the SUPERIORITY of the NEW (yet not new) Covenant, which is from the beginning, so we are born anew, from the beginning. When did the Resurrection happen? Before time or at Calvary? When did you “do it” with the woman you lusted after? What is God’s INTENTION? That ALL should come to KNOW HIM? That is what he says to me.

    The faith coming by hearing is for the workers, those who were before ordained to carry the message, to preach the gospel and to immunize the world with the Truth – it is the remnant of these believers who will manifest the Son of Man as New Jerusalem comes down out of heaven and they put on Christ and then witness the same and bring life to a dying world – this is what God showed me back in ’83 and that which is my hope. He is going to harvest the world, and when the whole world will have received the gospel, then the end shall come, and a new heaven and a new earth, and he shall renew all things, both in heaven and earth, and reconcile all things in Himself.

    He is the BOOK, He is the ledger, He RECONCILES ALL WITHIN HIMSELF – He cancels all debts – HE IS MY BOOK, HE IS MY LIFE. Peter is comparing here the old yearnings, wanting to be justified by the Law, with the New Way which is by the blood of the Lamb, by which we are born anew, from the beginning. Is this sinking in at all? Ask God if it be so.

    Aa-meen.

  126. BY the way, an integral part of the WC salvation message is that the Holy Spirit did not indwell Man until after Pentecoste – this is of course a load of bollocks – many OT saints are said to have been filled with the Spirit, notably Joshuah, a fore-runner to Jesus.

    11. And they had a premonition about the season in which the Spirit of Christ THAT ABIDED IN THEM would appear and be attested (be made manifest, the Word becoming flesh), as His passion and glorification afterwards were predestined.

    The Spirit of Christ in the Prophets spoke Himself into being and the faithful believed Him into being by believing that it was possible, that God could and would do what he says – it was not by magic, it was by FAITH and HOPE and LOVE.

    Nothing is impossible to God, He can cut off and regraft, but better that we should remain ingrafted and so ‘saved’ by the incorruptible Word – which is why if you embrace corruption you will be cut-off, for a season, an eon, a time…from the incorruptible word which is able to keep you, and Jesus is able to make ALL to stand before Him!

  127. “Was it two or three witnesses required to establish a fact?”

    Which fact is that?

    We’ve verified that God can forgive sins without a sacrifice.

    God doesn’t need it or want it.

    What then is the purpose of Jesus’s death?

    Well ultimately it was to rise again and pronounce victory to the world.

    What victory was that over?

    Romans 5 states

    12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

    13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

    15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

    18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

    Adam’s sin is not transferred to all people. I am not judged because of Adam’s sin. Adam’s sin resulted in death reigning in the world. Paul says that death ‘reigns’ as a result of Adam’s sin. For the wages of sin is death.

    This is our condemnation but the obedience of one man came to make things right

    Paul explains further

    1 Corinthians 15

    20 But now Christ has been raised from the dead, the first fruits of those who are asleep. 21 For since by a man came death, by a man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, so also in [h]Christ all will be made alive.

    By a man came death. There is only one way that death could be destroyed and the only One who could do it was the Author of Life Himself.

    So the ransom was paid. The price, the offering, the sacrifice of God Himself to give Himself over to Death and defeat it’s reign.

    This was no sacrifice to appease an angry God or to make us acceptable to God. That’s why sin is still with us. The idea that Jesus died for your sins and if you don’t believe that then Jesus died for nothing is nonsense. Jesus defeated death whether people believe it or not.

    It was an offering of God to humanity, for our sakes, because He loves us.

  128. So I produce a number of scriptures which patently declare that Christ died for the remission of our sins, and you still deny it.

    Are you sure you actually read those verses carefully?

    They could not be any clearer.

    Jesus Himslef said, when sharing communion, “This is my blood which is given for the remission of sin”.

    There is no Biblical doubt about it, only Bones doubt.

  129. Actually, it should read:

    “For this is My blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.”

    Hard to miss, really.

  130. Upon awakening this morning, Hebrew 9:22 was the early morning call – the scripture was being spoken to me and I was compelled to compare the Aramaic, and also to look up the Greek and English for REMISSION, as it is re His and our mission of earth! Remission means to CANCEL A DEBT – it does not mean to pay it offf, it means CANCEL, as in He CANCELED the NOTE which was AGAINST US. He OBLITERATED, DESTROYED, CANCELLED FOREVER THE DEBT TO DEATH. Would God pay off death? Nah, more like he would tell it to wrack off like a good Ozzie should!

    But seriously, Bones, and Steve, take the time to read this through, there are some stunnign statements in here which are lost in translation in the HELL-in-ized perVersions.

    Hebrews 9
    1. The first Covenant, however, had in it the instructions for service and a universal holy sanctuary.*
    2. For the first tabernacle had in it the menorah, the consecration table and the sacrificial bread, and it was called the holy Sanctuary.*
    3. The inner chamber, inside the two-sided entrance,* was called the holy of holies,
    4. And there was in it the vessel of the incense,* made of gold and the Ark of the Covenant, which was all covered* with gold, and there was the vessel of gold that contained the manna and the staff of Aaron which had sprouted, and there was the Tablets of the Covenant,
    5. And above it there were the cherubim of glory that foreshadowed the ultimate Sacrifice. For it was not then the season, however, to speak of each one of these as to how they would be promulgated.
    6. And to the outer tabernacle there entered king priests in every season* to offer their services,
    7. To the tabernacle within it, however, the leading king priest entered alone once a year, to offer the sacrifice of blood on his own behalf and on the behalf of the nation’s foolishnesses.*
    8. With this then the holy Spirit was making it known that the way of the saints was not yet revealed for many seasons while the tabernacle stood there.
    9. And this was a mystery* in the season of the offerings and sacrifices, as they could not fathom the mind of the One who would be their Offering,*
    10. Except they understood only about eating and drinking,* and regarding the ceremonial washings and baptisms they did very well indeed — these that were the commandments consecrated with respect to the flesh, until there came the season of fulfillment.
    11. However, when the Messiah came, it was by the oath of Kingly Priesthood that He was affirmed and He was the Lord and Master of the Tabernacle that was neither made with hands, nor was of this creation.
    12. Nor did He enter with the blood of birds and four-legged creatures, except He entered with his own blood, one season, into the holy of holies, and He achieved Salvation for the universe.
    13. For if the blood of the birds and four-legged creatures and their ashes was sufficient for those who were defiled and would sanctify them in the cleansing of their flesh,
    14. How much more the blood of the Messiah — with His eternal Spirit that He offered himself unblemished for God — would that then cleanse our soul from perishable works,* [how much more] would that fulfill the service to the Living God.

    15. Because of that He is the Reconciler of the New Covenant, who is the Savior of those who entered into the First Covenant and inherited the Kingdom, those who were called to inherit the eternal life.*
    16. For where there is a covenant, it is through death that the adherent is resurrected.
    17. It is regarding the dead person only that the truth is confirmed, because while that person is alive, their works are of no consequence.
    18. That is why from the beginning without blood nothing was confirmed.
    19. For when Moses gave the nation all the Commandments, according to the Law Moses sprinkled the blood of animals, using the crimson-marked wool and hyssop, over the Scriptures and over the entire nation,
    20. And he told them, that this is the blood of the Covenant, with which I am commanding from God.
    21. Also over the Tabernacle and all the vessels of service of that blood, he sprinkled it.
    22. Because everything is cleansed by blood in the Law, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.
    23. For it is necessary that these things are cleansed in the likeness of what is heavenly. Those things, however, that are of heaven are of greater service than these.
    24. For neither did the Messiah enter into a holy place that was built by hands, that is in the likeness of the true one, except He entered heaven itself so as to be seen in the visage of God, for our sake.
    25. Nor did He offer Himself many seasons as did the leading king priests, entering every year into the holy place with the blood that was not their own.
    26. And if otherwise, He would have had to suffer the Passion many seasons since the beginning of the universe. Now, however, He offered Himself only one time* at the end of the universe in the Sacrifice that annihilates sin.
    27. And whereas He consecrated for human beings to die one season, and after their death, one judgment,
    28. Likewise also the Messiah offered Himself one season, through His [human] Essence He obliterated the sins of many, so as in the second season those who held onto Him would see themselves Alive without their sins.
    *9:1 Lit. Ar. id.: “House of Holy.”
    *9:2 Lit. Ar. id.: “House of the Holy.”
    *9:3 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction: “That is inside the two faces of the doorway.”
    *9:4.1 Lit. Ar. id.: “House of Incense.”
    *9:4.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic figure of speech: “Won.”
    *9:6 Lit. Ar. id.: “Every generation.”
    *9:7 Lit. Ar. id. retained: “Sins.”
    *9:9.1 Lit. Ar. figure of speech: “Myth.”
    *9:9.2 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction: “Those who could not find to condense the conscience of who would offer them.”
    *9:10 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction: “Except with eating and drinking alone.”
    *9:14 Lit. Ar. idiomatic construction: “Our conscience from dead acts.”
    *9:15 Lit. Ar. idiomatic expression: “The inheritance to the [end of the] universe.”
    *9:26 Lit. Ar. id.: “One season.”

  131. The NT (from Romans to Revelation) is for the most part about the taking away of the OLD to establish the NEW. Where folk get confused is time lines – as in from when was the NEW COVENANT established and which came first. The New Covenant predates the Law and is the ETERNAL COVENANT between God and His One and only BEGOTTEN Son.

    Now verse 22 says:
    22. Because everything is cleansed by blood in the Law, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.

    OK, so this is UNDER THE LAW OF SIN AND DEATH that BLOOD is required, but the Law of Grace requires that the Law of S&D be fulfilled.

    The LSD is cancelled by enacting a higher Law, the Law of Life in Christ Jesus, the NEW covenant cut in His blood, satisfying all the righteous requirements of the LSD.

    Jesus was offered as a sacrifice under the LSD which required blood, and He ministered that same blood in the Holy of Holies in the heavenly tabernacle, that which is not made with hands.

    This was an act of ultimate Love, and this is the Love which covers for the multitude of sins.

    He was the ultimate holocaust, the ultimate sacrifice as He was and is God incarnate. He offered Himself up to God once for one season for the cancellation of Mankind’s debt – which to me was not paying it off but cancelling it.

    The Law requires payment for sin (fine, OK, I get it), But Jesus CANCELLED THE LAW by submitting it to a higher Law and establishing that so we may live thereby and no more under the Law, but under the covering of grace which blinds the accuser and obliterates the Law – where are your accusers now?

    Everything Jesus did on earth up to the Cross was under the Law, and He was resurrected in the POWER of the NEW covenant – which was the original, from the beginning, when God had a lamb slain….

    Your mother was the door to the world of the Law, Jesus is the Door to the kingdom of God’s grace, and he is the POWER to salvation, and the kingdom of God is not in WORD but in manifestation of Power.

    We are washed in the blood, our sins forgiven, cast into the sea of God’s forgetfulness – concerning this we all may agree, yes?

    If you can get your head around the New Covenant begin from the beginning it is a big key to understanding God’s intention, and with God, it is all about intention, it is the ruling principle of the Universe, and God does not INTEND that ANY should be lost but that ALL should come to KNOW Him.

    A question to all, did Jesus cancel the debt by PAYING it, or did He pay the debt by CANCELLING it? 0(:->)

  132. No, Ian, that is not the meaning intended or given.

    The word lutron means a payment was made for a release. It is form the root luo to loosen.

    It is a setting free of the captives or the slaves to sin by the payment of a price, or by an exchange.

    Jesus was the Exchange. The Propitiation.

    What are we slaves to? Sin. That is very clearly the meaning. Jesus shed HIs blood in the new covenant for the remission of sins.

    Anothr word for the same action – redemption.

    In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace

    Redemption – apolutrosis – ‘a releasing effect by the payment of a ransom’; ‘liberation procured by the payment of a ransom’.

    What did the blood do? It brought forgiveness of sins. Jesus’ blood was shed for the remission of sins.

    Romans 3:25…whom God set forth as a propitiation by His blood, through faith, to demonstrate His righteousness, because in His forbearance God had passed over the sins that were previously committed…

    There it is all contained in a nutshell, in one perfect phrase.

    God sent Jesus forth the Propitiation – the Exchange – by His Blood.

    Through faith. We are saved by grace through faith. Faith is the quality which receives the grace which offers the free gift of salvation.

    To demonstrate His righteousness. Jesus fulfilled the requirement of the Law through obedience to God’s will at the cross – our death for our sin, paid for – our ransom for our slavery to sin, paid for.

    Because in His forbearance, God had passed over the sins that were previously committed.

    The blood shed for the remission of sins.

    In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 1 John 4:10

    For our sins.

    W. E. Vines,
    It is God who is “propitiated” by the vindication of His holy and righteous character, whereby, through the provision He has made in the vicarious and expiatory sacrifice of Christ, He has so dealt with sin that He can show mercy to the believing sinner in the removal of his guilt and the remission of his sins.

  133. The word lutron means a payment was made for a release. It is form the root luo to loosen.

    Aha….now I understand why we go to the ‘loo’!!!

  134. Well it is all Greek to me sunshine, to koine a phrase, and Eashoa spoke Ancient Aramaic, the scribal and sacred language, and not the Hebraic variant Greek, although he is the Word, so I guess He speaks them all, and is them all.

    Now I want you to please CAREFULLY compare these two verses for the SUBTLE differences. Remember, Satan is SUBTLE, he knows the Bible better than anyone…except of course the Word Himself…

    Through whom we have salvation, and through his blood the forgiveness of sins, according to his abundant grace,

    In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace

    Now note the juxtaposing of the commas. In the first instance, the Aramaic, it says “Through whom we have salvation – COMMA – and through his blood the forgiveness of sins.”

    So, salvation does not come through the blood it is the obliteration of the record against us, yes?

    But in the New King James it says that redemption or salvation comes through the blood – hmmm – now there’s a hitch. We are back to dispensationalism again…

    Salvation is a Universal constant from before time – you obviously do not really read what I write, but just cherry pick what you feel you can best offer a rejoinder to. But then iron sharpens iron, so do your best, I am up for the debate and like Paul, I debate every point. 0(:->)

  135. Just read those two scriptures again and again – which one makes sense? If you don’t say the Aramaic, then I despair for you…

    Through whom we have salvation, and through his blood the forgiveness of sins, according to his abundant grace,

    In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace,

    That Bacon, genius he may have been, but he is so ham fisted compared to the Word!

    [There is substantial historical evidence that the founder of Rosicrucianism, and who also established French Grand Orient Freemasonry in Great Britain, Sir Francis Bacon, was the “Editor in Chief” for thirteen months with the text delivered by the 54 translators of the AV, for which King James later claimed credit – but only Bacon had the intellect and command of language to complete the task of leavening the scriptures so adroitly.]

  136. And the MAMMOTH GIGGLE is that the Protestants and Pentecostals mostly worship the King James Version as if it were the fourth person of the Godhead! It is the Francis Bacon Golden Dawn Masonic Bible and you don’t even get it! It is cleverly leavened but God can still touch you by it – there is enough truth in there to get you “saved” but it is by no means the immutable Word – otherwise we would not be having these debates, would we? The Word is a person – ad while you seem to trust in your command of the scriptures, tenuous as it may be, I trust in my Lord and He answers you, not me. I hope…

  137. The whole idea that Jesus died to make God happy, to make us acceptable to God comes from the translation of the Greek hilasterion as propiatiation (to appease an angry God).

    However this word can be translated in other ways such as expiation (to make pious or make amends or to remove a problem) and the interpretation really depends upon your theology.

    The problem with hilasterion being translated as propitiation is that it means Jesus was sacrificed to satisfy God,; Jesus was a ransom paid to God; Jesus was an offering made to appease God.

    That is clearly is not the case as God does not need nor is impressed by sacrifices.

    Neither did God need to be bought off.

    But Hilasterion can also be translated as expiation. eg

    Romans 3:25
    “whom God put forward as an expiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.” (RSV)

    “whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation of His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed. (NASB)

    1 John 2:2
    “and his is the expiation for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.” (RSV)

    “And He Himself is the propitiation for our sins; and not for ours only, but also for those of the whole world.”
    (NASB)

    Many of the church father’s interpreted hilasterion as expiation eg

    Gregory of Nyssa who said, “Christ, being an expiation by His blood, teaches each one thinking of this to become himself a propitiation, sanctifying his soul by the mortification of his members.”

    Chrysostom says, “Paul calls the redemption an expiation to show that if the Old Testament type had such power, much more did its New Testament counterpart have it.”

    And there are many more quotes from Origen, Ambrosiaster and Theodoret of Cyr who understood hilasterion as expiation.

    Expiation is more of a healing eg Jesus washes away our sins, He cleanses us from sin which is more of a healing act.

    I think those who translate hilasterion as propitiation do so out of their own image of God as One who needs to be appeased based on the sacrificial system of the Old Testament.

    In Hebrews 9:5, hilasterion is translated in many versions as ‘mercy seat’.

    “and over it cherubim of the glory, overshadowing the mercy-seat (hilasterion), concerning which we are not now to speak particularly.” (Young’s Literal)

    “and above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat (hilasterion); but of these things we cannot now speak in detail.” (NASB)

    This relates back to the mercy seat of the Ark of the Covenant and the referral to Jesus asks some interesting questions.

    What theological significance should be drawn from the connection?

    Is there some imagery at work here telling us that we should think of Jesus in terms of the Ark of the Covenant?

    Is Jesus the Ark of the Covenant?

    He is God’s dwelling place with men!

    Isn’t God the One who is sending the hilasterion as His gift to us, with the plan of removing our hostility towards Him, our separation from Him?

    This seems more in keeping with the teaching of the Church Fathers than is the view that He is somehow trying to appease His own wrathful vengeance on our behalf.

    Christ is instead the hilasmos because of His offering Himself on our behalf as our rescuer in order to open up the way of our reconciliation with God. As Tertullian said, “ Every soul, then, by reason of its birth, has its nature in Adam until it is born again in Christ. Moreover, it is unclean all the time that it remains without this regeneration. And because it is unclean, it is actually sinful.” or Bede, “This is the greatest sign of God’s love for us: when we were not yet able to seek Him because of our many sins, He sent His Son to us, so that we might grant forgiveness to all who believe in Him and call us back into the fellowship of His fatherly glory.”

    Pastorally, this might be seen in the example of Moses who prayed for his faithless, ungrateful people, praying that God would pardon them according to His word. In response to which God puts off, delays the consequences of their faithlessness and rebellion.

    Again when people were faithless and double-minded about who was the true God, wrathful Baal or the Lord, Elijah served as a conduit for their rediscovery of the Lord as the one true God. The passage beginning with 1 Kings 18:17, the passage about the gentle breeze, may well be understood as a comment on the difference between Baal and the Lord, but also as a comment on the wrathful God of much propitiation theology and the loving Lord who rescues us from our sins and opens the path for us to grow into His likeness.

    The translation of hilasterion actually is a reflection of your image of God.

  138. While the early Church viewed hilasterion as expiation, at the time the pagans use the word hilasterion to describe their offerings as propitiations – appeasing their gods.

  139. Bones, I continue to be inspired and impressed with your grasp of this matter and this debate is very stimulating!.

    It occurred to me that it was not God who needed a sacrifice but Man. The first sacrifice of a lamb, a type of the Lamb Slain from before the foundations of the worlds, was the lamb offered by God on behalf of Man. Now obviously there is a Spiritual dynamic at work here, and Man’s rebellion was as the sin of will-craft, so an innocent animal without blemish has to die to cover for Man’s guilt marking or branding by Satan, and so its skin was for covering and its blood for sin. Man should have died, being worthy of death, but Life elected to sacrifice innocence to cover for sin. And so too when Cain sacrificed/slew his brother, did God set up a Maximum Security Prison with guards and guns? No, He marked him such that none should harm him, and that mark became like his ankle bracelet. His brother was in Paradise, but guess who was in Mercy’s prison?

    When we take on the New Wine skin of the Lord for our covering, our containment, when we receive His blood for our sin, we are “saved”, but the salvation does not come through the blood, the salvation already was, it is the forgiveness of sins which comes through the blood, the sacrifice is for sin, not for salvation, but it is so salvation may become your reality instead of sin.

    Our only ambition ought to be submission.

    Now consider this, please. That the salvation comes by Jesus Christ, the Lamb Slain from before the foundation of the worlds, and the forgiveness or remission or expiation of sin comes through the faith in the blood.

    THE FAITH IN, I said “IN” THE BLOOD.

    Note the wording very carefully – “This that God presented in His behalf to purify by faith in His blood”

    IN HIS BEHALF – BY HIS (OWN) BLOOD!

    In other words, we are to have the faith of God, our faith in God is God’s faith, it is a function of His Spirit, one of the Seven Spirits of God, the Spirit of Faith speaks on this wise etc…it is His manifestation in us, and faith comes by hearing, and the hearing comes by the Word, which is a Man, Christ Jesus.

    God is The Initiator, The Healer, The Source – God offered Himself, a sacrifice for all – the innocent blood of the Lamb, so that Man could enter into the Kingdom, which is Peace Joy and Righteousness in the Holy Spirit – Peter said that the Prophets of Old yearned to see the advent of the Messiah, the final sacrifice for sin, and the fulfillment of the Law, but God is not satisfied by the keeping of the Law, that was for Man and for his sin nature, for the Law was added for transgressions until the Promise should come. But Man has by and large rejected the Promise preferring instead the Law.

    21. Now, however, without the Law, the righteousness of God was revealed, and over which testified that Law and those prophets,
    22. The righteousness of God then is through the faith of Jesus Christ for every human being who believes in him, for there is no discrimination,
    23. Because they all sinned and fell short of the glory of God.
    24. And they are sanctified by grace gratis, and by salvation that comes through Jesus Christ.
    25. This that God presented in His behalf to purify by faith in His blood, because of the sins that they sinned from old,

    God is ever the GIVER OF ALL LIFE! That is His GOAL!

    John said that we know we love Him if we keep His commandments – not the ten, but the ONE NEW YET OLD COMMANDMENT, WHICH WAS FROM THE BEGINNING!

    That you should love, one to another, even as I first loved you, and love this love covers for the multitude of sins, for it is the love of God expressed through you. God is made complete in His servants and in His many sons, His Joy is our fulfillment, our fulfillment is His Joy.

  140. “It occurred to me that it was not God who needed a sacrifice but Man.”

    Definitely. That’s the whole point of it. God didn’t die for God.

    So much of what we think is theology is how we see things, not how God sees things.

    When we hear people say that we are unworthy, we are sinners under God’s wrath and judgement, we are depraved, they aren’t speaking for God. That is not how God sees His creation.

    What God sees is people who are wounded, people who are sick.

    It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. – Jesus

  141. That is quite a statement and I concur. Trouble is with the sick is that they (we) tend to forget their (our) humility once they (we) are healed and go back to being carnal again. When Jesus said He came for the sick, the irony was that the self-righteous Pharisees were the sickest of all. In much the same vein He said to them “Does it not say in your own Law that you shall be (as) gods?” I actually had someone try and tell me that meant Jesus was telling them that they were gods and dipso facto, that we are too! Jesus was referring to the Law God ‘gave’ in Genesis “And you shall be as gods, knowing (judging) both the good and the evil”. Because Man had preferred his own judgment instead of God’s, being “In the day that you eat of it you shall die the death”, and so came under judgment, for if you judge in contradiction to God you shall be judged by yourself as god, the determiner of good and evil, and live according to your own seared consciences…

    With Jesus being the willing scape-goat for sin, it was God teaching us about judgment – you earthlings want to know what I think about judgment, here, watch Me! God judged Himself so we would be able to live under His righteous judgment and to CEASE FROM JUDGING! We really have got it all back to front, upside down and have made such a mess of the message.

    Keep working it out Bones, I like what you are laying down!

  142. I think for the most part we just do not “get” God and the reason He needs to come back is it is going to be term time in the Church and there are some examinations about to commence.

    Some time back, a group of Christian Peaceniks from Plowshares “attacked” the Waihopi Valley Echelon Spy Station near Blenheim. They slashed the plastic dome over one of the antennas, ostensibly causing a million in damages (actually about half that amount). I asked God what He had to say about it and heard, “They are innocent in My eyes and they shall go free, and I will destroy Waihopi to show the world what I think of eavesdropping.” So, I expect that it will come to pass, and probably sooner than later.

    Now plenty of well meaning (sic) people were incensed that these guys should be found innocent but they argued that they acted out of conscience and to protect other people from harm. Or take Bradley Manning, who exposed the most egregious murders and it his he who is treated like a criminal! Our values are upside down, back to front. Leaders behave like psychopaths or quislings, and TV is constantly focused upon the pathological aspects of society (which means “of the blood”) such that the image of this Beast is what people become conformed to.

    Note that it is IN THE BLOOD that the Pathological sin nature lurks – the LIFE is in the BLOOD, but so too is the DEATH SENTENCE OF SIN. The Blood of Jesus is SINLESS, PURE. he offers HIS BLOOD for the remission of sin, and His Mind that we may be conformed to it, and He is no respecter of persons.

    My son rang me before to tell me that at the start of the Masters, he looked at the field (he is a pretty handy golfer himself) and the thought occurred to him if he was to venture $5 on someone, who would it be? The name of some obscure Aussie occurred to him but he went with his own judgment. The odds on this guy were 1000:1 – they are now much, much shorter as he is the surprise leader.

    I told my son that God is teaching him a lesson as to listening and judging, and that had he won, he might well have then concluded that he had something to do with it and would get proud and no good would come of it.

    But God does not judge gambling, or my son, and if this guy wins, the five grand could have been a Godsend, or it could have become a stumbling block, its just how it works, yes? God judges the sin, while we judge the sinners, and Paul said it is not “I” which sins, but sin which works in my members, and it is not I which lives, but Christ which lives in me.”

    Like I have said, Jesus tells those He never entered to get out of His face, but He does not tell them to go to hell – for if you die in your sins, there is no more sacrifice of sins, simply the fire which is set to destroy the devil and his works, or another saying, “Fall on the Rock, lest the Rock fall on you” – same net sum gain, but different pain. Submission or rendition – take your pick.

  143. Bones and Ian,
    You people appear to wander from truthfully translated scripture and establish your own.Who are you people?God given scholars or something?
    Just waiting for the next most uninterpreted interpretation of the Holy Bible,and what will you call it?
    How about,’The Bones and Williams Book of Confusion’.
    I like a bit of icing with my cake,
    not a bit of cake with my icing.

  144. Yes EYES, God beamed down the Amplified version or whatever your favourite text is in English. Would’ve saved a whole lot of confusion.

    No interpretation was required.

    By the way the Peshitta is an ancient Aramaic version of the Bible and is the Bible of the Church of the East..

  145. May not have been star trek,Bones,however,

    James 1:17 (AMP)
    17 Every good gift and every perfect (free, large, full) gift is from above; it comes down from the Father of all [that gives] light, in [the shining of] Whom there can be no variation [rising or setting] or shadow cast by His turning [as in an eclipse].

  146. Wow (Amazing, fantastic or shout of acclamation) what a brilliant (excellent or shiny) post (wooden pole, mail service or electronic message).

    I should be so lucky (fortunate or well endowed).

  147. Psalm 119
    (AMP)

    1 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are the undefiled (the upright, truly sincere, and blameless) in the way [of the revealed will of God], who walk (order their conduct and conversation) in the law of the Lord (the whole of God’s revealed will).
    2 Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) are they who keep His testimonies, and who seek, inquire for and of Him and crave Him with the whole heart.

  148. Bones,
    You have always got a good spirit about things,i just wish that we could share an accord on all things,but i guess that is not possible with anyone.
    Be that as it may,it is still titillating to have a laugh with you.
    Ps,
    Well endowed KYLIE is quite titillating.

  149. This topic ended badly with just silly comments, which is unfortunate because it’s a worthy topic, and one that should be discussed reverently.

    I appreciate there are many views about salvation. But let’s make one thing clear. If you don’t accept and believe that Jesus died for our sins – then you really don’t understand the gospel in it’s simplicity.

    You can argue about big theological terms and the ramifications, but do we at least agree on this statement.

    “Christ died for our sins”?

    That’s not Steve’s position or a Protestant position. It’s part of the gospel.

    Paul says clearly what his gospel was. He reminded the Corinthians of it, told them they were standing on it and it’s by that gospel they are saved.

    This is critical.

    “that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, that he was buried, that he ws raised on the third day according to the scriptures.

    Whether particular countries should intervene in other countries and for what reasons is something that I think Christians will all differ on. Just like CHristians will differ on any topic.

    But, to be a person who calls themselves a Christian and who is preaching the gospel, you MUST at least believe that Christ died for our sins – according to Paul, according to the scriptures, and of hardly any importance – according to Q.

    Just thought I’d get that in.

    Let’s begin the new day by thanking GOd that Christ died for our sins.

    Praying for you all and for the persecuted Christians.

  150. Bones,
    The church has gone from being a hospital for the sick to being a law court pronouncing judgement on the world.

    Well that may be the case in your church, but it certainly isn’t in mine. In fact the Reformed Theologists are more likely to pronounce judgment on others than pentecostals, whose main aim is to grow the local church and plant them all over the planet.

    In ct e don’t see very much of the old school Jonathan Edwards fire and brimstone Calvinist preaching these days. David Wilkerson was an exponent, and Paul Washer is definitely in that school. Another Calvinist.

    I don’t mind Washer, actually. I think he has a role to play in the Body, and certainly has a powerful message delivered with passion, but he’s really the John Bevere of the Reformed club. Not a Pastor. An evangelist or a teacher, and severe at that, but you wouldn’t want to sit under that tirade every week. You’d be driven to depression. Always feel like a sinner, never a blood-redeemed saint. Always feel unworthy. How many times do you have to repent in your lifetime? Better to live a repented life. But you need some joy to get you through life. The joy of the Lord is our strength.

    But the complaint has been that contemporary churches or megachurches have a ‘gospel-light’ message and never enough of the Word to change a person, so where do you get your claim that they are pronouncing judgment. I think, as usual, you are making it up so it looks as if you have an argument.

    In fact, contemporary churches are more likely to be teaching personal development. That’s the claim, isn’t it? I hear less meaty sermons in Pentecostal and contemporary churches these days than even ten years ago. It’s all about how to get up out of trouble and into abundance. Isn’t that what you’ve been saying? Is it prosperity teaching or is it pronouncing judgment?

    I think the judgment preachers, like Nalliah, are actually copping flack from contemporary churches.

    Pentecostal, contemporary and mega churches tend to preach how to get better, not how to get worse. They’re more about personal life coaching than they’ve ever been. I think they’re falling short in some areas and missing the target with people by pulling back from what I see as Spirit filled God glorifying Pentecostal ministry, and gone more into personal development classes for the aspirational.

    Maybe a little more fire would perk the Church up. But don’t give me the tripe about the Church being a law court. It’s more like a doctors waiting room.

  151. Indeed let us be thankful that Jesus Christ died on behalf of our sins…I just love this text…1 Cor 15, especially verse 22…

    1. I declare to you then, brethren, the Revelation of the Kingdom, of Whom I preached to you and which you accepted and upheld.
    2. And through Him you Live, whereas it was the Manifestation that proffered [the Kingdom,] if you are confirmed, if you did not believe in idle manner.
    3. For I delivered to you from the beginning that which I received, that Jesus died on behalf of our sins, as is written [in Scriptures,]
    4. That he was buried and rose within three days, as is written [in Scriptures.]
    5. And He appeared to Keepa [Peter] and after him to the Twelve.
    6. And afterwards He appeared to five hundred brethren together, most of whom stand with us until now and some that are in repose.
    7. And after them, He appeared to Jacob and after him to all the apostles.
    8. After all of them, in closing, He appeared to me also.
    9. I am [the one] who is the smallest of the apostles, because I persecuted the church of God.
    10. However, because of the grace of God, I have what I have, and His grace for me is not misplaced, except it is more precious for me than to all the others, not that it is I [who makes it precious,] except because it is His grace that is with me.
    11. If I thus and if they thus preached, then you should thus believe also.
    12. If then, Christ preached that He rose from the dead, how can there be persons among you that say there is no life after death?*
    13. And if there is no life after death then neither did Christ arise.
    14. And if Jesus did not arise, preaching [the message] is in vain, and your faith has become empty also.
    15. And we have been found to be even false witnesses of God, that we testified over God who raised Christ while he did not.
    16. For if the dead do not arise, neither did Christ.
    17. And if Christ did not arise, your faith has been voided, and hence you are still in your sins.
    18. And, therefore, also those who reposed in Christ went to oblivion.
    19. And if through these [false pretenses] we preached everlasting life through Christ, we are the most dispossessed of all humanity.
    20. However now, Christ has risen from the dead and is the Awakening of the Reposed.
    21. And whereas death was wrought by the hands of the human being, likewise the resurrection of the dead is brought about through the human being.
    22. For whereas through Adam all humanity died, likewise through Christ all of them shall Live.
    23. Every human being according to their endurance [in Faith], their Awakening is in Christ, after which those who are in Christ at His Coming.
    24. And then it will be the End, when the Kingdom is in submission to God the Father, when all leadership and all authority and all powers are nullified.
    25. For he was destined to reign till all his enemies were consecrated under his feet.
    26. And the last enemy he nullified is death.
    27. For everyone is in submission under his feet. What was Said then, that everything is under his submission, was recognizable as that which was dictated from whom all shall submit to.

    Aa-meen

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