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Thus Saith Paul

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Another clue is when Jesus told the 12 specifically to make disciples of all nations in his name and preach the gospel to every creature.

I swear he must have stuttered.

The verse you cite is not even talking about preaching the gospel.

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I'm not surprised why you might have difficulty putting yourself in someone else's shoes, and trying to consider something from what might be their perspective.

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You have to be dumb as a brick and deliberately distorting the words of Jesus to take a comment that is not about spreading the gospel and apply it in a way that absolves them of a specific instruction to spread the gospel.

I don't think the problem is that I can't put myself in their shoes. The problem is that I respect their intelligence far more than you seem to.

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You don't believe it was ever said by Jesus, as written in scripture, so why are you even on this thread?  Isn't this supposed to be about what Paul said? Frankly, I don't really give a hoot whether or not the 12 apostles did or didn't understand his instructions.  Fact is, their focus and intent was reach all of Israel with their message first and foremost.  All you seem intent on doing is accusing me (by implication) of any and every ill or stupid thing you can think of, as if you know exactly what was meant in words that you don't believe were ever spoken by Jesus.  And you dare talk about having to be as dumb as a brick.  But, I guess it's some game you like to play to control whatever board (or thread) or conversation you can.

 

Edited by TLC
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BUT YOU DO.

What difference does it make if I believe it? YOU DO.

On this thread, I am taking for granted that Paul said these things and that Jesus said these things, unless there is some need to question that.

You asked for a scripture in which the 12 were instructed to preach to the Gentiles. I gave you one, and you have bent yourself into a pretzel at a Twizzler factory to deny the obvious -- Jesus absolutely DID tell the 12 to preach the gospel to the Gentiles. Sadly, you are so embarrassed at being schooled by an atheist that you refuse to admit the Bible says what is says, and you're using MY unbelief to prove that YOUR Bible is wrong about what it says?

I. have. every. right. to. post. on. this. thread. or. any. other.

If you read my comment carefully, I did not say you are dumb as a brick (much as I would have been thrilled to do so). I said the apostles would have to be dumb as a brick to take a comment Jesus made that had nothing to do with preaching the gospel and apply it to undermine his extremely clear instruction to preach the gospel to every creature and make disciples of all the nations.

And they would have to be that stupid.

Easier explanation: Jesus said it. They didn't do it. Jesus gets Paul to step in where the original (well, the new and improved) 12 fell short.

This fits the scriptural evidence without turning the 12 into quibbling idiots who don't know what "preach the gospel to every creature and make disciples of all nations" means.

I do not understand why you are so unwilling to believe what Jesus said that you will cite my unbelief to justify your ignoring the red-letter words in your Bible.

Edited by Raf

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On 5/3/2019 at 4:59 PM, Raf said:

I said the apostles would have to be dumb as a brick to take a comment Jesus made that had nothing to do with preaching the gospel and apply it to undermine his extremely clear instruction to preach the gospel to every creature and make disciples of all the nations.

And they would have to be that stupid.

That's a crock of BS that anyone with half a brain could see through.

Evidently you find some sort of perverse pleasure in thwarting any sort of discovery or discussion of differences between the gospel message that the twelve apostles preached and the gospel that Paul introduced.  Continue playing your sick little game, Raf, but I won't.  You went back over 3 pages (July of last year) in this thread to spin some comment made in a rather different context (concerning a change in the gospel and the authority that Paul might have had) into what I thought was a discussion about differences between what the twelve preached and what Paul preached.   Yet, rather than consider or look at what the actual message is or isn't, you remain hell bent on patting yourself on the back that you (an atheist) think you might have found a scripture that I didn't know was in the Bible or don't believe what it says (even though you're flat out wrong on both accounts.)

Not that you will care or give a hoot, but I'll ask this for the sake of anyone else reading.  Did Jesus (while he lived here with his disciples) ever not keep and follow the law? When did trying to do likewise and teaching others to "observe all things whatsoever" Jesus commanded them [the 12] to do change?  Or did it... ever?

Edited by TLC

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Here is where this thread started:

 

The "nostalgia for research" article/thread prompted me to contemplate the significance of "inerrancy".

The Way Ministry focused primarily on study of The Pauline Epistles. This was a precedent that was established early in the PFAL class via the introduction of Biblical administrations (Dispensationalism), the concept of observing "To Whom It Is Written" and the idea behind all people belonging to three specific categories. ("Jew, Gentile or Church of God") In addition, it was established early in the PFAL class that what "Holy Men of God" spoke or wrote was tantamount to words directly from God, himself. Thus, we were to consider the contents of The Church Epistles to be equivalent to words from God (Holy Men Of God Spoke.), directly to us (To The Church of God), At one point during the course of the Fellow Laborer program, we were to read Ephesians a minimum of once a day. Then, we were to rehash it at our night twigs every night. Given the rigidness of the schedule we observed, this didn't last long nor were people very consistent in their diligence. That, however, is probably fodder for another topic.

Here is were it gets sticky. Using the aforementioned criteria, it became an accepted "given" that whatever Paul said in Ephesians, Corinthians, etc was the same thing as God saying it directly to us. Suppose for a moment, though, that Paul was, perhaps, the VPW of his day. (So often, people would put forth the inverse idea that VPW was the Apostle Paul of our day and time.) Even now, years after his death, with the advent of the internet and the plethora of information it puts at our fingertips, some people still aren't able to see that VPW was really a con-man. People in the first century did not have access to resources that could prove or disprove Paul's legitimacy.

We have heard people say that it's God's will we all speak in tongues (one example) because God said so in "His Word". Did He? Or, was it Paul who made that statement? Question five, of "listening with a purpose", in session eleven, poses the question, "Is it God's will that we all speak in tongues?" According to the answer key, the correct answer is "Yes". But think about it. Who really said "I would that ye all speak in tongues."? Wasn't it, in fact, Paul? Did he really say that "to us" or to a specific group of people two thousand years ago? There are many, many more examples of places where you could insert "Thus Saith Paul."

What if Paul was really a forerunner of what we now call "con men"? What if Paul was the VPWFHDAT? (VPW for his day and time) It certainly shines a very different light on the importance and "inerrancy" of The Epistles.

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2 hours ago, TLC said:

That's a crock of BS that anyone with half a brain could see through.

Evidently you find some sort of perverse pleasure in thwarting any sort of discovery or discussion of differences between the gospel message that the twelve apostles preached and the gospel that Paul introduced.  Continue playing your sick little game, Raf, but I won't.  You went back over 3 pages (July of last year) in this thread to spin some comment made in a rather different context (concerning a change in the gospel and the authority that Paul might have had) into what I thought was a discussion about differences between what the twelve preached and what Paul preached.   Yet, rather than consider or look at what the actual message is or isn't, you remain hell bent on patting yourself on the back that you (an atheist) think you might have found a scripture that I didn't know was in the Bible or don't believe what it says (even though you're flat out wrong on both accounts.)

Not that you will care or give a hoot, but I'll ask this for the sake of anyone else reading.  Did Jesus (while he lived here with his disciples) ever not keep and follow the law? When did trying to do likewise and teaching others to "observe all things whatsoever" Jesus commanded them [the 12] to do change?  Or did it... ever?

you are off topic

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Look, I am sorry that you asked a very specific question that the Bible very specifically answers and you have to be shown the answer from the Bible by an atheist who knows the book better than you do. But that is no excuse for you trying to make this thread about me. You really need to get back on topic. You asked a question. The Bible answered it. Accept the Bible's answer, or admit that you don't believe the book any more than I do.

Edited by Raf

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Discuss the topic all you want, but attacking other poster’s character or motives will NOT be tolerated. Further posts in that vein will not be edited, they will be deleted in their entirety. If part of those posts are on topic, that part will be gone too. It is your responsibility to stay on topic and not violate our rules, not mine.

Discuss, object, disagree in the thread all you want. The key is to not make it personal or about another member. Got it?

 

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There is an implication here that I took a question out of context and spun it.

I'll leave it to readers to go back to the posts in question and decide if I did any such thing.

Quite simply, Jesus told the apostles to preach the gospel, and he did not limit them to Israel first, reserving a special, later commission for Paul. Scripturally, Paul is special because he took "disciple all nations in my name" seriously. Despite having heard the clear instruction from the lips of the risen savior himself, the original 12 did not do what he said.

Now, it could very well be that they thought of themselves as ministers to the circumcision, and that was certainly the case before the crucifixion. But if we are going to ask the question whether there was a clear Biblical directive for them to preach to the gentiles, the question has explicit Biblical answers.

The apostles did not do what Jesus said to do. No amount of "but months earlier he said something else" changes the fact that after the resurrection, the biggest change in circumstance in the history of the world, Jesus changed the instruction and the apostles didn't do it.

Why?

Biblically, it's simple. The apostles weren't perfect. They were wrong not to go beyond Israel. He told them to and they didn't do it. Had to give Peter an amazing vision just to get him to preach the gospel to A gentile after he had already told all the apostles to disciple ALL NATIONS in his name.

PETER!

What made Paul special? He seems to be the only apostle who took that instruction seriously.

That's not so hard. It allows scripture to tell its own story without pretending the apostles were obedient when they clearly fell short on one instruction. Doesn't make them bad people. But if they had done what Jesus specifically told them to do, Jesus wouldn't have needed to commission Paul for that particular purpose.

Simple and scriptural.

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35 minutes ago, Raf said:

What made Paul special? He seems to be the only apostle who took that instruction seriously.

...or so he claimed. (hence: Thus saith Paul.)

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I was answering from a doctrinal perspective.

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Speaking of which, Waysider, considering your opening post and your latest comments, should this thread be moved?

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10 hours ago, Raf said:

Speaking of which, Waysider, considering your opening post and your latest comments, should this thread be moved?

I'm not sure. The thread is over 9 years old. My thoughts on many things have certainly changed over that stretch of time. If I was starting the thread today, I would probably start it in Questioning Faith.

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Questioning faith didn't exist in 2010.

Nonetheless, we either move the thread or start a new one there. Your call.

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10 hours ago, Raf said:

Questioning faith didn't exist in 2010.

Nonetheless, we either move the thread or start a new one there. Your call.

It makes sense to move it.

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It is done.

We are now in "Questioning Faith." Please check the original post on this thread; I am sure reasonable people will agree that this is where the thread belongs.

Until this point, I have answered questions as though the Bible contains the definitive answers to the questions being asked. However, the original post contains a question the Bible cannot answer.

Quote

What if Paul was really a forerunner of what we now call "con men"? What if Paul was the VPWFHDAT? (VPW for his day and time) It certainly shines a very different light on the importance and "inerr

ancy" of The Epistles.

I suppose it would be presumed that the atheist position is, of course he was a conman. But that's not really fair. Maybe he was and maybe he wasn't. But let's see what the Bible actually says about Paul.

Paul wants us to believe (as we noted on another thread, or was it here?) that he did not learn the gospel from the apostles. He met them, according to Acts, but didn't discuss anything of significance with them. Or he didn't meet them until three years into his ministry, according to Galatians.

That is not credible. Paul MUST HAVE talked to the apostles if he had information about the Last Supper. Where else would he have gotten that information? Yeah, God. Um, no. Remember that Paul is writing before the gospels were written, and he is adamant that he did not learn the gospels from the apostles. This is significant because the apostles are alive when Paul is writing. If he is lying, they could easily have called him out. They didn't.

In case I am not being clear, I am insinuating that Paul invented the Last Supper and the gospel writers retconned that into the life of Jesus. It doesn't take much work to learn that Christians were not first to the table with a Eucharistic type of meal. 

Now, let's look back at everyone's behavior. Again, according to Paul: The apostles are very much concerned with preaching to Israel. Only Paul goes to the Gentiles. And this is a BIG DEAL. They have long discussions about the implications. Finally, they make it clear: Paul goes to the gentiles: the rest stick with Israel.

WHY ON EARTH WOULD THEY DO THAT IF JESUS TOLD THEM SPECIFICALLY TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO EVERY CREATURE AND DISCIPLE ALL NATIONS IN HIS NAME?

The easiest biblical explanation is they were stubborn.

The easiest explanation is, Jesus never gave any such instruction. If he had, they would have done it

Paul went to the Gentiles first because the original apostles never dreamed of taking it outside of Israel. They had no reason whatsoever to believe otherwise until Paul forced them to contend with the issue. THEN, afterwards, the church needed to have the mission to the Gentiles come from the lips of Jesus instead of "just" Paul. Suddenly, the post-resurrection appearances (all of which were written decades after Paul's ministry) contain Jesus giving clear and unambiguous instructions to preach the gospel to every f-ing thing that moves. No explanation is given for why the apostles don't follow that exceedingly clear instruction save the vague "zealous for the law" implications in Acts.

But what about being told before that they were ministers to the circumcision?  Doesn't matter. If the risen Christ tells you to do something that seems to conflict with the living Christ, you either ask him for clarification or you just up-front follow the new, clear instruction. Preach the gospel to every creature is pretty danged clear.

They didn't seem to ask for clarification. And they didn't follow the instruction. Either they're stupid, or the new instruction is a fantasy ret-con designed to show the faith community that what Paul was doing was specifically what Jesus instructed.

Except he didn't. Jews, who know their own scriptures and prophecies, were rejecting the Christian message, so Paul sold it to people more likely to buy it: Superstitious pagans who erected shrines to unknown gods just in case they missed anyone. It's easy to say Jesus fulfilled prophecies to people who did not know the context of those prophecies and could not determine for themselves it was a load of bunk.

Jews know the Book of Daniel is a work of fiction. That's why Daniel is not counted among the prophets in Jewish Bibles. Law, Psalms and Prophets, remember? Daniel is counted among the Psalms. It's a work of literature, not history. It's not because Jews don't know their holy book as well as Christians do (the arrogance!).

It's easy for Gentiles to be swayed by the prophecy that a virgin shall be with child, because they do not know the context of that prophecy, which was (a) fulfilled in its own time, (b) not referring to a "virgin" as we know the term and (c) not Messianic. 

Prophecy after prophecy in the New Testament applied to Jesus fails on any level of inspection. "Out of Egypt have I called my son" is not a Messianic prophecy -- it's not a prophecy at all! "He shall be called a Nazarene" is not a prophecy, Messianic or otherwise. Rachel weeping for children was not a Messianic prophecy. Isaiah 53 is not a Messianic prophecy!

Jews know this. That is why they are not impressed by Jesus "fulfilling" non-prophecies. The easiest people to impress were people least familiar with Hebrew scriptures. That's why Christianity leaped so easily from being a Jewish sect to being a Gentile one. Fooling Jews about their own religion was a LOT more difficult than fooling superstitious pagans about the identity of their unknown God.

Why Pul converted, we'll never know. He admits persecuting the church. Acts embellishes on that admission, but the author of Acts is a liar. He lied about Jesus' birth and he flat out contradicts Paul about Paul's own life. Who are you going to believe?

Was Paul a con man? Hard to tell. The "road to Damascus" story comes to us second hand. His letters don't recount it. He clearly believes he's on a mission from God. But he can't possibly know the things he claims to know about Jesus and the gospel WITHOUT having obtained that information from the apostles -- unless... unless... unless he made it up. 

And THAT is why the epistles precede the gospels, historically.

Jesus, insofar as he existed, was an itinerant preacher who made the wrong enemies and got himself killed. Paul is the one who elevated him.

Why?

Why did Joseph Smith find golden tablets?

Why did VPW see snow on the gas pumps?

Why did Charles T. Russell's math lead him to believe Christ would return at the end of the 19th century?

Different people believed different Messianic claims in the First Century. It would appear Paul not only seized on the Messiah Y'Shua movement but entirely co-opted and seized control of it, to the chagrin of those who tried and failed to make it a significant movement within Judaism. The history was rewritten using Paul as a framework, not the other way around. The Jesus of history became the Jesus of Paul's legend. History's Jesus was executed by the Romans for sedition. Paul took the crucifixion and declared it to be the work of spiritual forces on high -- no mention of Romans, Jews or Pilate. He didn't need it. No empty tomb. Who cares? People saw him.

It's only when trying to relate it as a history that writers are compelled to fill in the blanks Paul did not consider necessary. Whose tomb? Joseph of the Place No One Heard of Before or Since. Who saw him first? She did. I mean they did. I mean he did. I mean... Why didn't he stay in one place? MAGIC! Did the 12 see him? Yes!

All 12?

Yes! Wait, no. I mean, Matthias was retroactively added to the 12 and...

Mmm hmm.

 

 

Edited by Raf
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On ‎5‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 11:50 AM, Raf said:

You really need to get back on topic. You asked a question. The Bible answered it. Accept the Bible's answer, or admit that you don't believe the book any more than I do.

The topic had (obviously) changed.  Say or call it whatever you want, it is and will remain your interpretation (be it right or wrong) of the Bible's answer.  Which, has no affect or correlation to what I do or don't (much less should or shouldn't) believe concerning the book. 

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On ‎5‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 6:07 PM, Raf said:

He seems to be the only apostle who took that instruction seriously.

Why suppose that the instructions given to Paul were exactly the same as what was given others previously?

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5 minutes ago, TLC said:

Why suppose that the instructions given to Paul were exactly the same as what was given others previously?

Because there is no scripture to indicate otherwise

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19 minutes ago, TLC said:

The topic had (obviously) changed.  Say or call it whatever you want, it is and will remain your interpretation (be it right or wrong) of the Bible's answer.  Which, has no affect or correlation to what I do or don't (much less should or shouldn't) believe concerning the book. 

I'm literally doing nothing other than quoting scripture, while you're stammering but, but, but, but 

You asked a question. I am QUOTING THE BIBLE'S ANSWER.

This is KILLING you, isn't it?

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4 minutes ago, Raf said:

I'm literally doing nothing other than quoting scripture, while you're stammering but, but, but, but 

You asked a question. I am QUOTING THE BIBLE'S ANSWER.

This is KILLING you, isn't it?

not in the slightest...  even though after being admonished for it by another moderator, you continue wanting to make it personal.

we see it differently, and long ago I gave my view of it.  you can neither acknowledge or accept that. "your way" is the only right way and everyone else is wrong.  there are words for that, but you certainly don't need any more help making this any more about you.

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16 minutes ago, Raf said:

Because there is no scripture to indicate otherwise

Sure there is. But that would be off topic from what seems to be the originator's intent of this thread.

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"Your view of it" is incompatible with scripture.

The scripture you cited is irrelevant to the question you asked.

For some reason you seem incapable of letting it go. Jesus answered your question explicitly, according to the Bible. Take it up with him

 

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