Humble pie…

My short, now-deleted post was poorly conceived and even more poorly executed.  In a word, it was junk so I got rid of it.  BuelahMan kindly responded with a thoughtful comment, so I did not want to trash the entire thing; happily, an interesting exchange has followed.  I hope it proves useful to someone.  Until next time…

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14 Responses to Humble pie…

  1. BuelahMan says:

    I don’t plan on watching others around me, especially my wife and daughter, suffer. I refuse to just “die well”. What is up with that?

    And I’ll tell you something else, God has impressed this within me. My job is to survive (it is hardly “nothing”) and to ensure the survival of my family. There will be a job to do after the fall, as well.

    I also refuse to believe that this entire life is about determining where I end up in eternity (in the Bible, there is but one entity that is eternal). While I’m here, I plan on being the very best I can be. This is life’s stage. This isn’t practice or a try-out. The anionios life is here and now. Not some strange gold lined streets elsewhere in some existence no one has ever experienced and told about.

    THIS is the big show.

  2. Dave1010 says:

    Eamon
    I’ve read every post since the beginning. I can’t believe I missed last nights. I don’t agree but I do respect your right to delete.
    I’m not sure what Buelah Man means about ” The anionios life is here and now.”
    d

    • BuelahMan says:

      Sorry, I misspelled aionios. It is the greek word that is mistranslated into “eternal”, “forever and ever”, etc in Scripture. It is the adjective derived from the noun aion (which is correctly translated as “age” or maybe “eon”). A aion is a timeframe with a beginning and end and never should be translated as “eternal” (nor should its adjective). Anything eternal has neither a beginning, nor end. The only eternal thing in Scripture is God, Himself.

      So, “eternal life” (aionios zoe) is not representative of length of time, but of quality. Those who receive eternal life have received something of vast quality, not unmeasurable length. It is the same for kolasis (eternal punishment). Any punishment from the “Good Father” is corrective and certainly not forever and ever. To believe otherwise makes me a “Better Father” than God is, for I would NEVER punish my child for all eternity. Would you?

  3. Dave1010 says:

    E. You still here? Seek your calling while it may be found.
    d

  4. Dave1010 says:

    No. I have trouble grounding my son for the week-end. Thanks B. Man. I didn’t mean to butt in. I meant no disrespect E.
    d

  5. Eamon says:

    FWIW, I never intimated that any creature is, in fact, eternal in the strict sense of the term. What I said is that what we do in time has ramifications in eternity. Used in this sense, eternity is being distinguished from time; such a usage is perfectly legitimate and common. Properly speaking, our souls are immortal; when we die, we cross over from time into eternity, i.e., a state of being that will have no end and wherein we will undergo no change. I will make a lengthier post about it all, but you can take it to the bank that, just as our potential reward will never end, neither will our potential punishment. We are free to choose either one and that is what this short life is all about: choosing to be elevated and drawn into the very life and light and love of God Himself or remain forever apart from Him. If we harbor a disordered love of self to a degree which excludes God, that is what we get in time and, if we never humble ourselves, forever. While I love and appreciate you, Buelah, you have a few vital matters incorrect. I mean no disrespect and I will not go into such things in a brief comment, but Jesus Christ is crystal clear that there is a hell and those who choose to go there never, ever leave — and their fixed hatred of God makes it so they would not want to be in His supremely holy presence. If you don’t believe what Jesus said, fair enough — but don’t try to water it down just because it annihilates modern sensibilities. I will do what I can to make a lengthier post within the next few days that address some of these fundamental, vital topics.

    • BuelahMan says:

      I never intimated that any creature is, in fact, eternal in the strict sense of the term. What I said is that what we do in time has ramifications in eternity. Used in this sense, eternity is being distinguished from time; such a usage is perfectly legitimate and common. Properly speaking, our souls are immortal; when we die, we cross over from time into eternity, i.e., a state of being that will have no end and wherein we will undergo no change.

      What makes you say that last sentence? Church teaching or an understanding of the original word meanings. These two things are hardly the same thing. I put forth a great deal of effort to explain the word meanings of the Greek and you ignored that.

      I will make a lengthier post about it all, but you can take it to the bank that, just as our potential reward will never end, neither will our potential punishment.

      Not according to the Scripture you refused to examine or discuss. I can’t take what you say to the bank, for it is fraught with error and misunderstanding.

      We are free to choose either one and that is what this short life is all about: choosing to be elevated and drawn into the very life and light and love of God Himself or remain forever apart from Him.

      Who is free to choose either one? The Muslim who NEVER hears of Christ? Or anyone that decides for himself that they want to be a Christian, whether or not the Holy Spirit has moved on them to do so? Or maybe its the one that Jesus wooed into compliance when what He said about the cross plainly means he will FORCE them. Do you know what the Greek word “helkuo” means in every instance it is used within Scripture, except the one time a person like you suggests it is just an invitation to decide?

      Jesus said, “If I be lifted up on the cross, I will DRAG all men unto me.” (Look it up and do it honestly, please). There is nothing worse than debating this subject with a believer that doesn’t even know what the words he uses to instruct others means.

      If we harbor a disordered love of self to a degree which excludes God, that is what we get in time and, if we never humble ourselves, forever. While I love and appreciate you, Buelah, you have a few vital matters incorrect. I mean no disrespect and I will not go into such things in a brief comment, but Jesus Christ is crystal clear that there is a hell and those who choose to go there never, ever leave — and their fixed hatred of God makes it so they would not want to be in His supremely holy presence.

      No, Eamon, it is you who have taken the intentional mistranslations of easily discerned words incorrectly and fuel a belief which would make any sane person question if God is a maniac or, at the very least, two faced and unworthy of being called a “Good father”. You can either look into what I shared with you and then debate it, or you can continue to knee-jerk react via Chruchiology. One proves you to be honest, the other lazy.

      If you don’t believe what Jesus said, fair enough — but don’t try to water it down just because it annihilates modern sensibilities. I will do what I can to make a lengthier post within the next few days that address some of these fundamental, vital topics.

      As long as you are honest in your scholarship, I will enjoy it. But if its just more of the same old (that’s what the preacherman told me) keep it. From this little interaction, I would be forced to believe that I understand Jesus’ words far better than you, but we can double chaeck that with your installment.

      I’ll keep an eye out for something of substance, but at this point, you have shown yourself hardly approved to teach this subject to me. Let’s see if you can do true scholarship, shall we?

      • Eamon says:

        Your focus seems to be knowledge of the “original” Greek and your supposedly superior scholarship. Fair enough, and I have no problem admitting that you are an intelligent and learned man; however, it is good to consider that a grand total of zero of the original manuscripts is actually still extant — nor has any such truly-original text existed for several hundred years. Many moderns love to speak of the “original” Greek or Hebrew, but they have immeasurably less access to the original texts than we have access to the printing press of the Federal Reserve. The extant texts are ALL copies of copies of copies, and on and on, mostly made by monks in whom you are implicitly placing your entire trust (ironic, no?). While you know some things I do not, I can assure you that I know things that you do not. Why not seek to profit from the situation, rather than carry on in mega-scholar attack mode? It is your choice; choose wisely.

        I don’t know Greek and have no plan to learn it; the same may be said about Hebrew. Still, I have no problem trusting or appreciating what you have shared — which, to be frank, hardly required a great deal of labor on your part, yet you want me to pat you on the back for it as if it were some great deed? I hate to disappoint you, but that is not going to happen. As for the Moslem who “never hears of Christ,” do you not realize that Jesus Christ and Mary are mentioned in the Koran? I am supposed to bow before the “superior scholarship” of a man who is ignorant of something so monumentally obvious? Do you not think God can and does provide sufficient opportunity for all to know and embrace the truth, despite the fact that many refuse to do so? If He does NOT provide everyone with sufficient light and grace to save his soul, THAT would be monstrous — not excluding from His presence those who choose to hate Him.

        For what it is worth, one of my areas of expertise is the logic, metaphysics, etc., involved. The reason I said what I did about time/eternity is this: it is something that can actually be know by the light of reason (just as God and many of His attributes, as well as the immortality of the soul, etc., can be known by the light of reason). It has nothing to do with the meaning of a particular Greek word or any particular Church teaching. To be sure, the overwhelming majority of men are far too carnal and dull to know all that can be know by reason alone, but that does not alter the truth or its knowability.

        As for teaching you, who said that is my goal? I believe you are incorrect about certain things and I also believe I can demonstrate that this is so. You clearly believe something similar. What to do? You are being rather pugnacious and starting to get personal, which is fine with me — just don’t be surprised when your unnecessary and disproportionate pugnacity produces a similar response. Personally, I’d prefer if it did not proceed in such a manner, but that is your call, not mine.

        I must ask: Jesus supposedly FORCING or dragging everyone (which has clearly NOT occurred, despite the passage of 2000 years) does not sound maniacal, but God actually ratifying the eyes-wide-open choice of creatures who hate Him and are endowed with free will does? What is more, if Jesus said He will drag ALL MEN after Him, he is: 1. a liar, for this has not actually happened, or 2. His words mean something other than what you seem to indicate. I suppose a third possibility is that you believe He drags ALL men to heaven regardless of how they respond to grace in this life. Any clarification on your part is greatly appreciated. Some of what you say makes me think you either do not believe in free will, or hold to a strange, perhaps incomplete notion thereof.

        Lastly (for now), if no one is going to be excluded from God’s presence forever, why bother with such discussions? If we are all going to make it in the end, talking about such things is nothing but a monumental waste of time. If such were true, there is really nothing substantial on the line at all in this life. While I am certain that I am guilty of violating the following maxim from time to time, it is wise to not overestimate oneself, nor underestimate another. Godspeed to you and yours, Buelah. Thank you for sharing your time and knowledge with us.

  6. Eamon says:

    One question for Buelah: does your wife or daughter ever suffer, however slightly? If so, is it due to your lack of effort, or to your lack of power to stop it? Do you believe that you and yours alone can completely avoid suffering, perhaps by your own Herculean efforts? Suffering is a part of life in this world, my friend. Most moderns cannot accept that suffering has a purpose and cannot be entirely avoided. Their bellyaching changes nothing, other than increasing their own frustration. Until they accept and try to live life as it is, life is and will remain a complete, often-painful mystery to them. While it is your duty to provide for and protect your wife and daughter, there is much that is completely out of your hands — including the appointed-but-unknown hour of your own death. Do you disagree? No one is asking you to allow things that you can and should prevent, but to trust that all things, adversity included, work unto good for those who love God.

    As for Paradise, do you think Jesus was delusional when He told the good thief that he would be with Him in Paradise? Was He delusional when He said that it would have been better for Judas if he had never been born? Do you think Jesus is God and knows about what follows this life and spoke of it and everything else with a kind and degree of authority not seen before or since? If not, why bother reading Holy Writ at all? If so, your comment about streets of gold and no one having experienced or told about heaven is manifestly incorrect. He and the Father are ONE — if you’ve seen or heard Him, you’ve seen and heard the Father. He was crystal clear about it: “Before Abraham was, I AM.” Those who heard this statement had absolutely zero doubt that He claimed to BE God; that is why those who opposed Him sought to stone Him.

    Many who “appreciate” most of the words of Jesus utterly fail to address or think about the ramifications of His many “divisive” statements, but it is impossible to ignore them or explain them away. He claimed to BE God; He either is or is not. He claimed that He IS the way, the ONLY way to the Father; He is or He is not. If He is not what He said, people should oppose Him and all He said or did with every fiber of their being; if He is what He said He is, all who see and grasp the truth should submit to the awesome influence of His grace and love, trusting that such is THE way to truly sanctify ourselves and obtain eternal life.

    • BuelahMan says:

      Is English the only language you have studied in reference to the Bible? Especially the Olde English of the KJV?

      Have you ever even looked at the words I pointed out to you? Are you not even curious to what I explained to you? That the word aion means age or eon and that its adjective cannot mean something MORE than the noun its derived from? This is basic, 3rd grade grammar.

      But don’t be upset. The vast majority of “Christians” believe the very same garbage. I am not surprised you are right there with them.

      Take care and holler if you get the balls to truly evaluate what I told you.

      • Eamon says:

        To answer your first question, no. For what it is worth, I don’t actually read the KJV nor do I hold it in esteem where fidelity of translation is concerned. However, I appreciate your unfounded mockery as much as the next man.

        I already looked up what you told me, but I appreciate your taking an arrogant stance on the matter and presuming otherwise, even throwing in the bit about third grade grammar, etc. Why would I even try to engage in a calm, rational, friendly discussion with a man whose present attitude all but precludes such a thing? It is a great grace that you are not a doctor; your bedside manner would kill your patients — if they did not kill you first.

        I will not insult you or your manhood in order to demonstrate my own, but you might want to take a look at Henry Graham’s “Where We Got The Bible.” It is available online. Pax tecum, Buelah.

  7. Eamon says:

    As for choosing God, which involves eternal, i.e., unending life as a necessary consequence, we have this, from Deuteronomy…

    “I call heaven and earth to witness this day, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing. Choose therefore life, that both thou and thy seed may live.”

    …and this, from Ecclesiasticus 15:

    “Before man is life and death, good and evil, that which he shall choose shall be given him.”

    There are more such quotes, but I feel no need to provide them all. Greek and Hebrew aside, it is crystal clear that how we spend eternity, in the completely legitimate sense I have already used, is up to us — we choose our end. Otherwise, all talk of free will is reduced to absurdity. To be sure, salvation is a gift that no one can attain purely by his own power, but it is one that is not bestowed upon those who do not actually and efficaciously desire it. God forces Himself upon no one; to pretend that this somehow makes Him a two-faced maniac or a monster is a completely irrational and untenable position. He gives unending life to all who want it; those who love sin and all that comes with it more than they love God shall receive the consequences of their choice. How is this even slightly unreasonable or contrary to divine goodness? The monster in this case is not God, but the rational creature who knowingly and willingly rejects God, Beauty and Goodness and Love Itself, because he — a creature created out of nothing — admires himself and his gifts as if they were his own and as if he were their cause, or in order to chase after the passing gratifications of this short life as if they were the raison d’etre of life itself. This is exactly the case with the fallen angels: they loved their own excellence for itself and their own glory, not God’s. All men, at least from time to time, do the same. Some sadly do so until the very end.

    I want to thank Buelah for his time and efforts; however, Buelah, I’d also like to encourage you to rethink what appears to be your present attitude toward this exchange (about which I admit I might be incorrect). While I admittedly do not know everything, about Holy Writ or many other things, neither do you. If you’d like to profit from a friendly exchange, I am all for it. If you’d just like to wax pugnacious and scholastically superior, I will not be playing along. Take that as my having no balls, but it is more a case of life being too short to engage in an endless pissing contest. We both know there is much work to be done and, with each passing day, less time to do it. Either way, I wish you and yours the very best in time and eternity 😉 Godspeed, sir.

  8. Eamon says:

    One need not know Greek to know the truths which are vital in the most emphatic sense of the term; one need not be a Greek or Hebrew scholar to have faith, hope, charity, humility, wisdom, or to receive God’s grace and save his soul. In fact, such learning often proves an obstacle to a living, vibrant faith and docility to the promptings of the Holy Spirit precisely because it puffs us up and makes us believe we are more than we are. The New Testament was not even composed until many years after Jesus lived; the Canon was not determined definitively until centuries had passed. Yet, many moderns think the Holy Bible can serve as the sole rule of belief. It was never meant to play such a role; it never has played such a role; it never will play such a role, except for those prideful men who wrest it unto their own destruction. ALL who make use of any version of it rely upon the trustworthiness and skill of the monks who painstakingly copied it over and over during the course of many centuries. As a final word, I quote one of the many sayings of Jesus that cannot be misunderstood nor explained away:

    “Amen, amen I say unto you: Except you eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, you shall not have life in you.”

    Those who heard Jesus say this understood Him perfectly — and many left Him as a result. He did not chase them down and clarify His ‘true’ meaning precisely because those who left had not, in fact, misunderstood Him. Yet, to this day, men will try to perform the most asinine mental gymnastics in order to avoid the clear, undeniable truth.

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