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Sunday, April 15, 2018

Liar ban: WATYF

I've never been impressed by WATYF's incessant posturing, but since he usually remained within more or less within the boundaries of the rules. I mostly ignored him. However, seeing how he was blatantly misrepresenting my positions at John Wright's blog, I am now banning him from commenting here.

It's really rather remarkable how dishonest so many self-professed Christian conservatives are about the Alt-Right, particularly the Christian Alt-Right, which they prefer to pretend does not even exist. Because they cannot rationally or scripturally defend either their theological positions or their commitments to various forms of equality, they usually resort to lying about us when they can't simply ignore us. I've indicated WAYTF's false statements in bold text and his omission of the necessary context in italics.
WATYF
To be fair, Vox's emphasis on Christianity is just a bit offset by the fact that he says Christ preaches hatred as a virtue and that murder is totes OK (because war).

Benjamin Wheeler
Care to quote him on that? Or did you just think that because he says that not all men are equal that he preaches hatred? That, because he hates war, he wants to prevent it? I didn't realize that peoples who never meet each other still war.

WATYF
No, I'm not misunderstanding him nor am I drawing an inference from something he said. He has said directly and with no equivocation that hatred is morally good (according to Christianity) and that murder is permissible because we're in a culture war.

Here is the latest "hatred is good" post where he invokes God to justify his position. Remember, this isn't just "we should oppose this view", it's "we should actively hate these people".

Benjamin Wheeler
Strange, because all I got from that was the hatred of sin. The rhetoric is merely a vehicle. "I am proud of my wife for refusing to respect Jack and the social mores enforced by his little Safety Council. What is better than a hot blonde hater? Hate is human, and hatred is a human right. God hates deceit, God hates the wicked, and so should we."

I didn't realize I shouldn't hate evil. I should start loving it! Thank you! I didn't realize how wicked I was not hating sin.

WATYF
Yeah, your rhetoric isn't going to work on me so don't bother. I'm obviously not saying anything in your last sentence.

If all you got from that was the hatred of sin then you should read more carefully. He observably *isn't* just saying, "hate evil". He's saying, "hate these PEOPLE because they do evil (or rather, belong to a group that is disproportionately likely to do evil)". It's right there in the text you quoted.

Benjamin Wheeler
I know. I've got so long to go before I can match Vox.

WATYF
His doesn't work either. Rhetoric is generally only useful on the stupid and those who can't control their emotions. It also makes the user stupider the more they use it.

So as I was saying, Vox openly advocates for a version of Christianity that preaches the hatred of entire groups (and individuals) as well as some other rather unchristian "virtues". Yes, he repeatedly points out how Christianity is a pillar of Western Civilization (which I agree with), but I wouldn't go to him to find out exactly what Christianity is.

Benjamin Wheeler
Right, but he gets a reaction out of you, since you're both emotionally offended by him and unable to think past his rhetoric to any points underneath. I'm pretty sure you ignore any dialectic because it's easier to paint him with a brush thanks to rhetoric.

WATYF
Are you reading anything I'm writing? I'm trying to figure out if you're still trying to use rhetoric or if you just can't understand the argument.

I'm not "reacting" to what he's saying. I'm analyzing it (rather coldly and dispassionately). I'm quite able to "think past his rhetoric" which is why I can present the points underneath, and the points are explicit. People have asked him directly on his own blog to clarify and he has. At first, I assumed it must be some kind of tactic involving irony or whatever, but after enough times where he said it, explained his defense of the position, and confirmed it to people who asked, I saw no utility in assuming the opposite of what was obviously true.

But if you like, you can keep telling yourself that "God says it's OK to hate people" doesn't actually mean "God says it's OK to hate people". That just strikes me as a decidedly self-deluded way to approach the matter.

You're not "pretty sure" of anything here. Nothing you've said has actually addressed anything I'm actually saying. I started reading Vox over a decade ago when he mostly avoided rhetoric and engaged in dialectic debates on a regular basis. That's what attracted me to it. Now, it's almost non-stop rhetoric, all day every day. It's his blog, so whatever, but the change in the quality of the commenters there is a pretty good indicator of how that shift has affected his readership.
It's amusing that WATYF claims that it is non-stop rhetoric here. That's simply not the case. As for the intellectual quality of the commenters, it has naturally gone down as the readership has grown from 3,000 daily to 100,000 daily, but due to my consistently weeding out posers, gammas, trolls, and liars, it is a considerably more honest discourse than one will find elsewhere.

I would much rather have 10 honest commenters of average intelligence than 100 highly intelligent dissemblers and deceivers all trying to push their false narratives on the readers here.

As usual, WATYF is flat-out wrong. God does not just hate sin. God does not just hate wickedness. God hates the wicked. The wicked are clearly people, a subset of the human race set apart by their thoughts and their actions. Now, to the best of my understanding, the wicked are individuals who are not merely sinful, who are not merely weak, who have not merely given into temptation, but are those who have actively and purposefully set themselves against God and hate Jesus Christ. They are described as liars and deceivers and slanderers, among other things.

Should the Christian hate the wicked or should he love them? That is the question that I have yet to see a Churchian answer directly, without equivocation or dissembling or substituting words. And I also have an important follow-up question: is there a difference between sin and wickedness?

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304 Comments:

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Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 9:58 PM  

There is at least one group that you absolutely must hate, and that is false teachers. If anyone doubts this, read 2 Peter chapter 2, and Galatians chapter 1. (Especially note that Paul declared anathema to them - in other words, cursed them to hell).

Blogger Valtandor Nought April 15, 2018 9:59 PM  

I think Churchians are taught to view “the wicked” (as defined above) as an empty set. That is, any given person is either a sinner who has already put his trust in Christ, or a sinner who has yet to do so.

Which means that an injunction to “hate the wicked” is either meaningless or morally repugnant.

Blogger Vaughan Williams April 15, 2018 9:59 PM  

Sin in the languages of the Bible merely means "failure". Deliberate sin is dealt with differently from accidental sin. So, I would consider wickedness to be a subset of sin.

Blogger Skyler the Weird April 15, 2018 10:00 PM  

The only Equality that People really have is that we are all wicked and deserving of death unless we submit to the saving Grace of Jesus Christ and the Power of the Holy Spirit.

Blogger Felix Bellator April 15, 2018 10:02 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Felix Bellator April 15, 2018 10:04 PM  

Psalm 11:5 The LORD trieth the righteous: but the wicked and him that loveth violence his soul hateth.

Anonymous Anonymous April 15, 2018 10:06 PM  

OT: I find so many meme ideas in the comments. Critique if desired.

Conservatives on Immigration in History

Blogger ThirdMonkey April 15, 2018 10:09 PM  

For the Christian, ours is a ministry of reconciliation. After all, He sent His Son to the cross to reconcile us to Him. But make no mistake, we are in a spiritual war against this world and the prince of this world. But the weapons of our warfare are not of this world but have divine power to destroy strongholds. These strongholds are the fortresses (which for them are also prisons) in which men hide and fortify themselves against God. We are called to destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, being ready to punish every disobedience.

Should the Christian hate the wicked? Those who have built themselves up against God have willingly made them His enemy. Their heart is hard, and when God casts them into their eternal punishment, we should and will rejoice, for His justice is good and perfect, as is his lovingkindess toward those who trust in His name.
Is there a difference between sin and wickedness? Yes. Sin is action against God. Wickedness is a life against God.

Blogger Felix Bellator April 15, 2018 10:09 PM  

Hate is not the opposite of love. God hates the wicked, but still loves them:

Romans 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

If we perfectly understood God, He wouldn't be God.

Blogger Solaire Of Astora April 15, 2018 10:12 PM  

Wickedness is revelry in sin.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:14 PM  

WHY is it, that we don't take revenge? Well, Paul answers that.

Rom 12:19 Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:16 PM  

Anyone who preaches you forgiveness that involves pretending the injustice didn't happen or matter, is a false teacher. The Bible is very specific about this. We don't avenge, because God is the primary injured party, even when someone hurts us - his property. He has the right to take first vengeance.

Blogger Edward Isaacs April 15, 2018 10:18 PM  

Love is willing good things for someone. Eternal salvation is the best thing humans can get, so to love a non-Christian is, in part, to desire his conversion. Yes, we must love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us. St. Stephen prayed for the men who were killing him, I hope to someday attain the virtue to be able to do the same if necessary.

"The wicked" is not a great category, since people are so weak and changeable. I think Saul before his conversion would count as "wicked" the way you describe it. But yes, Christians should love the wicked and every other human being, since God loves them and we must love what God loves. The conversion of the wicked serves God's glory better than their damnation does.

God's hatred of wicked persons is related to his willing evil for someone, since that is what hatred is: willing evil for someone. But God's willing of evil is always permissive rather than direct. He allows evil to happen to people rather than commanding it. So his hatred when spoken of in Scripture should be understood as an indirect and permissive willing of evil, otherwise we lose any ground for claiming God to be all-good. Many saints have understood damnation itself as a voluntary self-exclusion from Heaven on the part of the damned which nevertheless is permitted by God in his justice. To the degree to which we can say that God has willed the damnation of some particular person, as Christians we can agree with God's judgment, and will what he wills, thus in effect willing the already damned their damnation, which could be called hatred.

Mere emotions, even those called hatred by a sort of shorthand, are morally neutral and can be either virtuous or vicious depending on circumstance. Emotion uncontrolled or insubordinate to reason however is always vice.

I write from a Catholic viewpoint, so Catholic-based corrections if I have made any errors are welcome.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:23 PM  

Here's our attitude about revenge when the taint of sin has been completely removed and we are in heaven:

Rev 6:9 When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne.
10 They cried out with a loud voice, “O Sovereign Lord, holy and true, how long before you will judge and avenge our blood on those who dwell on the earth?”

Blogger Daniel Paul Grech Pereira April 15, 2018 10:26 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger D. April 15, 2018 10:29 PM  

Q on fire:

"Think timing. LL remains AG HRC. HRC appoints new AS replacement. RBG steps down. LL steps up. New AG. ‘The Plan’. Q"

https://qanonposts.com/

Blogger Carl Philipp April 15, 2018 10:30 PM  

@14 :
I... will have to bookmark that for my literally-too-nice Christian friends, such as I still talk to.

Blogger John April 15, 2018 10:31 PM  

The wicked are those who have actively and purposely set themselves against God and hate Jesus Christ.
Saul actively and purposely set himself against God and hated Jesus Christ.
Saul was one of the wicked.

God redeemed Saul.
God redeems the wicked.

God hates the wicked.
God redeems those he hates.

?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:35 PM  

Saul was mistaken about who Jesus of Nazareth was, and did what he did because he thought it pleased God. Saul was not one of the wicked, even though his actions ended up being.

Blogger MickDundee April 15, 2018 10:37 PM  

Many conservatives are closeted gays. Just sayin...

Blogger fiendeJ April 15, 2018 10:38 PM  

The mistake here is looking at "the wicked" as a locked category, disregarding repentance.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:38 PM  

Normally we'll seldom know what someone's motivations are for doing a wicked act, but in Saul's case we happen to know, because he was born again, and was able to tell us.

Blogger Tobias Templo April 15, 2018 10:38 PM  

The sad truth also is that there are a lot of Christians who thinks like WATYF. That God is all love and everything good. They remove the other side where God gives judgment that which includes physical destruction of the wicked.

I mean, do these people really read the Bible and even bother to get to know the God that they worship?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:40 PM  

The opposite case would be the majority of the pharisees and the scribes, because Jesus was able to tell us.

Blogger Dire Badger April 15, 2018 10:44 PM  

I would say that the First Crusaders were truly Christian.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:45 PM  

Doesn't it seem funny that of all the pharisees, God would choose Saul - who then proceeds to submit to Jesus immediately when Jesus reveals to him who he really is? This is ENTIRELY unlike the rest of them, with the exception of Nicodemus.

Jesus knows what's in a man's heart.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 10:45 PM  

@Markku (19)

how on earth can murdering Christians and persecuting Christ not qualify as wicked? That's quite a stretch. If the mere fact that Saul repented makes his actions retroactively something other than a great evil, then wicked becomes a term reserved for God's use, for none of us can know with certainty whether another man may yet repent.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:47 PM  

I specifically said on two occasions that his actions were wicked. Now you speak of his actions, and say I'm not calling them wicked. Calm down, and read what I actually say.

Blogger Beau April 15, 2018 10:48 PM  

Just this morning I asked a young man whom I observed playing a video game on his phone while the pastor was preaching, "Are you pleased you are going to hell?" This blunt opening statement led to a remarkable conversation challenging him to shove all his chips in for God after he confessed his need to have his sins taken away by the Lamb of God. In my opinion "loving the sinner but hating the sin" is a weak sauce excuse for not confronting the sin in the sinner. We don't want to discomfort people, so we say nothing, or nothing that leads to repentance, such action is seen as "unloving." Nothing can be further from the truth. In our aim to not disturb, discomfort, or offend, we fasten the chains of sin firmer onto the hearts and minds of the sinful, leaving them no path of escape from the wrath of God against all wickedness. I'd rather be hated by someone who told me God's truth than kissed by enablers eager to justify my own or their own wickedness.

Blogger Tobias Templo April 15, 2018 10:50 PM  

@Farinata,

Because of the motivation. Yes it is wicked. Yes, it made Saul one of the wicked. Even Saul himself admitted it as such(since he even reached to a point where who committed murder). And we also know that repentance can change it through the Grace of God.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 10:51 PM  

@14 - why assume that the desire of the saints for justice stems from hatred? That word does not appear in the passage. Moreover, we read elsewhere (Ezekiel 33) that God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. So if hate the word you want to use, at least it needs to have a very narrow and technical meaning.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:51 PM  

Compare Jesus's opening salvo to Saul and Nicodemus, to any of the rest of the pharisees and scribes. They are as if from a different planets. Why do you think this is?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:52 PM  

@14 - why assume that the desire of the saints for justice stems from hatred? That word does not appear in the passage. Moreover, we read elsewhere (Ezekiel 33) that God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked. So if hate the word you want to use, at least it needs to have a very narrow and technical meaning.

I didn't say anything about the passage. I simply quoted it. Whatever you read into that, comes from your own head.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 10:54 PM  

Two times Jesus opens gently. Two times, the person is born again.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 10:56 PM  

@ Markku,
my apologies, then. So when you say that Saul was "not one of the wicked," do you mean that chiefly in the ultimate sense - because he eventually repented? Because I would say that Saul was horribly wicked, and then was saved; he wasn't part of "the wicked" only because he didn't persist in it. Do we agree?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:00 PM  

I'm saying that there is a group called "the wicked", and Saul never belonged to it. He committed wicked acts, because he was mistaken about a crucial fact. He didn't commit them out of the wickedness of heart. The pharisees with whom Jesus just immediately goes for the jugular, are "the wicked".

Jhn 2:24 But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men,
25 and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.

Blogger Jew613 April 15, 2018 11:01 PM  

There are times and people to hate. There are multiple places in Tanach where G-d's hatred is mentioned, Psalm 11 for example. Or Psalm 58 where hatred isnt mentioned but the rejoicing of the righteous at the downfall of the wicked is.

Blogger John April 15, 2018 11:03 PM  

Compare Jesus's opening salvo to Saul and Nicodemus

Saul received a miraculous vision that blinded him.

Saul was mistaken about who Jesus of Nazareth was, and did what he did because he thought it pleased God. Saul was not one of the wicked, even though his actions ended up being.

Or, Saul was one of the wicked and repented on account of receiving a miraculous vision, and God's reasons for choosing him are mysterious, as per usual.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:05 PM  

Act 9:4 And falling to the ground he heard a voice saying to him, “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting me?”
5 And he said, “Who are you, Lord?” And he said, “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting.
6 But rise and enter the city, and you will be told what you are to do.”

There is not a HINT of anger here.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother April 15, 2018 11:06 PM  

The wicked are the non elect. Saul was elect. Jesus was their hearts and knew who the wicked non elect are.

Who are the elect? Who is predestined? I'm not referring to their actions being predestined, but they themselves to eternal life.

Blogger Tobias Templo April 15, 2018 11:09 PM  

And now we are back to the elect thing. Can we categorise first that which we can confirm as elect, like the Apostles except for Judas? Then Paul?

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother April 15, 2018 11:10 PM  

The elect are those who are identified in Romans 8:28, just one example. He shall know them by their fruit, etc.

Blogger John April 15, 2018 11:11 PM  

There is not a HINT of anger here.

"Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?" Matt 25:15

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:11 PM  

Also, I think that he was blinded simply as a side-effect of encountering God's glory in an unsanctified state. Moses was not blinded, looking directly at God's back. The Israelites, however, were almost blinded just by looking at Moses's face.

It's not like Jesus went "ZAP! Now you're blind!"

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:11 PM  

"Am I not allowed to do what I choose with what belongs to me? Or do you begrudge my generosity?" Matt 25:15

I have no idea what you are trying to say with your prooftext.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 11:12 PM  

@36
"I'm saying that there is a group called "the wicked", and Saul never belonged to it."

Agree, although I would stipulate that it's hard for us to know information like that absent divine revelation.

..."He committed wicked acts, because he was mistaken about a crucial fact. He didn't commit them out of the wickedness of heart."

This I don't understand. How can wickedness - a moral quality - stem from a defect of knowledge? Lack of knowledge is not a sin, wickedness is. Wickedness of heart as an attribute solely of "the wicked" seems to run afoul of some basic elements of the gospel: what can it mean to be "dead in our trespasses and sins" if our hearts are not also wicked? Or are you using "wickedness of heart" in some technical sense?

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 15, 2018 11:13 PM  

“God's hatred of wicked persons is related to his willing evil for someone, since that is what hatred is: willing evil for someone. But God's willing of evil is always permissive rather than direct. He allows evil to happen to people rather than commanding it. So his hatred when spoken of in Scripture should be understood as an indirect and permissive willing of evil, otherwise we lose any ground for claiming God to be all-good.”

This is simply not true, nor even remotely biblical...and I too write from the Catholic viewpoint.

God quite deliberately “wills” violence upon the wicked. Your conflation of the word evil and hatred notwithstanding. And God most certainly categorizes people (PEOPLE as “beings” as opposed to “doers”) as either righteous or wicked. Psalm 11

Sin, or wrong/evil/unjust action/what have you, is not a part of the equation related to those two categories. Jesus himself most certainly discriminates one’s actions not by the action alone but by the heart (the being) behind it.

I think Christians who get caught up with the notion Christians can never hate willfully misinterpret who our “brothers” are. Jesus spoke plainly about how the Gospel would tear apart families. Brothers from brothers. Yet no one denies Christ message of loving our brothers, or for that matter John’s message of loving vs hating our brothers.

But then once again, who is our brother, or more famously, who is our neighbor? The post V2 ecumenical movement really confused the answer. I’ve mentioned my problem with Nostra aetate before and I’ll not go into it again, but I do believe Pope Benedict (then Ratzinger) wrote quite compellingly in On the Meaning of Christian Brotherhood. He declares there is brotherhood in faith, brotherhood in righteousness, genetic brotherhood, and finally brotherhood in creation. At no point does he equate them and in fact states each is deserving of a different level of weight and or consideration.

Cain IS NOT deserving of the same consideration as Able. Even Cain himself recognizes this and know because of his wicked nature he will most certainly be killed. His cry of desperation is not repentance however and he is never declared not-wicked, only that he will not be killed by man. God never again makes such a declaration about any other wicked person and in fact he himself commits great acts of violence upon many.

And that’s not just an Old Testament thing either. Revelation is pretty clear if you need a reminder. The Devil, the beast, the false prophet, cowards, the unfaithful, the depraved, murderers, the unchaste, sorcerers, idol-worshipers, and deceivers of every sort, their lot is in the burning pool of fire and sulfur. “There they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.”

That’s pretty freaking violent and quite willful on the part of God. Who do you think does the “throwing?”

Finally. No where in scripture is it written that God both loves and hates a person at the same time. Nor is it prescribed that the faithful ought to love and hate simultaneously. You’re just making that up in an effort to reconcile the false equivocation of the many layers of brotherhood. It is not done. It cannot be done.

Blogger Bogey April 15, 2018 11:13 PM  

"As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated."

Pretty cut and dry on God's feelings about someone specific. I'm pretty sure he can also feel that way in the macro sense.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:13 PM  

Unless you think that I'm saying that Jesus was somehow unfair. No, I'm saying that it is not a coincidence that the two times Jesus spoke gently to one of the religious leaders, are the two times when they converted. As I already quoted, Jesus chose his behavior according to "what was in man".

Jhn 2:24 But Jesus did not commit himself unto them, because he knew all men,
25 and needed no one to bear witness about man, for he himself knew what was in man.

Blogger Matthew April 15, 2018 11:14 PM  

Markku wrote:Compare Jesus's opening salvo to Saul and Nicodemus, to any of the rest of the pharisees and scribes. They are as if from a different planets. Why do you think this is?

'Cause they were "Judeans by birth"?

Blogger Tobias Templo April 15, 2018 11:15 PM  

@Bogey (48):

Anthropomorphism! God does not have feelings like humans do!!! ~sarc

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother April 15, 2018 11:16 PM  

Because they were elect, and born again at the time Jesus spoke to them. Jesus tells Nicodemus the Holy Spirit is like a wind. You can't tell where it's going but you can tell where it's been. So is everyone who is born again.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:16 PM  

This I don't understand. How can wickedness - a moral quality - stem from a defect of knowledge? Lack of knowledge is not a sin, wickedness is. Wickedness of heart as an attribute solely of "the wicked" seems to run afoul of some basic elements of the gospel: what can it mean to be "dead in our trespasses and sins" if our hearts are not also wicked? Or are you using "wickedness of heart" in some technical sense?

We were all wicked of heart, and some of it remains even after rebirth, but these particular actions weren't committed due to that motivation. Which makes them different than the actions of other pharisees, who got Jesus crucified. Jesus laid out with the parable of the vineyard, that they did it because they wanted the kingdom for themselves. This is a very different motivation than thinking that you have disciples of a false messiah in your hands, and you need to stop them from deceiving even more Jews.

Blogger Josh (the sexiest thing here) April 15, 2018 11:17 PM  

The LORD tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother April 15, 2018 11:17 PM  

Right so back to the question people are asking, who are the wicked? Is it wicked by practice or wicked by nature?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:19 PM  

As for how Paul's actions can be described as wicked, that would be because ultimately they stem from the forces of darkness. Saul was just an unwitting tool.

Blogger John April 15, 2018 11:21 PM  

@45. I apologize. To clarify, if Saul is among the wicked, and his repentance does not reflect any particular state of his own heart, but rather is a response to receiving a vision, this can be justified on the basis that Jesus is free to dispense his grace to whoever he wishes, without justifying it to anyone.

Also, I think that he was blinded simply as a side-effect of encountering God's glory in an unsanctified state

I'm not suggesting the blindness reflects Jesus' anger. I shouldn't have mentioned it, the main point is that Saul received a vision and other Pharisees did not.

Blogger Stg58/Animal Mother April 15, 2018 11:22 PM  

Why Saul?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:23 PM  

The parable of the vineyard lays out that the other Pharisees knew they were dealing with the son of the owner of the vineyard, and killed him specifically because of that.

Blogger Josh (the sexiest thing here) April 15, 2018 11:24 PM  

Right so back to the question people are asking, who are the wicked? Is it wicked by practice or wicked by nature?

That's the wrong question.

Strong's Concordance
rasha: wicked, criminal
Original Word: רָשָׁע
Part of Speech: Adjective
Transliteration: rasha
Phonetic Spelling: (raw-shaw')
Short Definition: wicked

Strong's Exhaustive Concordance
condemned, guilty, ungodly, wicked man, that did wrong
From rasha'; morally wrong; concretely, an (actively) bad person -- + condemned, guilty, ungodly, wicked (man), that did wrong.

see HEBREW rasha'

Strong's Concordance
rasha: to be wicked, act wickedly
Original Word: רָשַׁע
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: rasha
Phonetic Spelling: (raw-shah')
Short Definition: condemn

Strong's Exhaustive Concordance
condemn, make trouble, vex, be commit, deal, depart, do wickedly,
A primitive root; to be (causatively, do or declare) wrong; by implication, to disturb, violate -- condemn, make trouble, vex, be (commit, deal, depart, do) wicked(-ly, -ness).

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:25 PM  

Why Saul?

Are you asking me? Because Jesus chose so. But Jesus is entirely free to take, or not take, into account Saul's motivations for his actions. It's not that those motivations merit anything, but they are a piece of information that Jesus knows. It's his business what to do with it.

I'm saying that Saul's very quick submission implies that he wasn't acting out of rebelliousness.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:26 PM  

Some of us God has, in fact, saved in a rebellious state. He's free to do that too. But when that is the case, the work usually takes years, and involves a lot of hardship. It doesn't look like Saul's conversion.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 15, 2018 11:27 PM  

Hahaha! Who’s down with O.P.P?!

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 11:29 PM  

@56
Sounds like we don't disagree about much, then. Cool.

Anonymous Anonymous April 15, 2018 11:30 PM  

Unequivocally, the wicked are to be loved. The entire raison d'etre of Christianity's mission element is precisely to go forth to the wicked, convert them and baptize them so that they might not perish.

Note that it is a going-forth - Christianity should be on the offense, sending its missionaries into unChristian lands. These days, as with so many other things, Christian leaders have reversed the order of things and seem to think the solution is having all the non-Christians come into the Christian lands to improve their material condition without having anything to do with improving their spiritual condition. It is rather like the ultimate tragedy of European colonialism, that when at last the nations of Christendom finally had military supremacy over the Islamic empire, they were no longer terribly interested in smashing that false religion anywhere their armies trod, just interested in how they could make money.

None of this means loving any of the wickedness in the wicked. Admonishing the sinner and praying for their conversion is how one shows love to the wicked. Granted there can be some range of tact in how to approach converting the sinner, but it should never include any hint that the sin is acceptable. If they will not hear, then they will not hear. Ezekiel 33 and the end of the letter of James speak of the importance of admonishing the sinner. The Lord Himself says in Luke 17 that we should rebuke for sin, but if the sinner's response is repentance, even if the cycle keeps repeating constantly, we are to forgive. Matthew 18 is where the non-repentant sinner is to be treated as a Gentile after some attempts at conversion fail.

Blogger John April 15, 2018 11:32 PM  

Some of us God has, in fact, saved in a rebellious state. He's free to do that too. But when that is the case, the work usually takes years, and involves a lot of hardship. It doesn't look like Saul's conversion.

But Saul received a miraculous vision. He wasn't converted the way the other Apostles were, or the way Nicodemus was. And Nicodemus wasn't plotting to arrest or kill the apostles.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:35 PM  

But Saul received a miraculous vision. He wasn't converted the way the other Apostles were, or the way Nicodemus was. And Nicodemus wasn't plotting to arrest or kill the apostles.

I'm saying that human psychology just doesn't work like that. The Pharisees saw Lazarus raised from the dead. That's a LOT more dramatic than seeing a vision, which was viewed at reasonably common in that era. What did the pharisees do? They sought to kill Lazarus. THAT'S what the rebellious and self-interested mind does, when it encounters the miraculous. Which is why God doesn't just save everyone by appearing in a vision.

Visions only work when your problem is lack of, or false, information.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:40 PM  

Again, read the chapters I referred at the beginning of the thread, with Peter's and Paul's words about false teachers. Jesus had perfect knowledge about "what is in a man" but Peter and Paul didn't. How loving do they sound in that chapter?

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:41 PM  

If the answer is "not very loving", then that option must be in our toolbox too. It depends on the person we're dealing with.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 11:42 PM  

@68 - isn't it a category error to address salvation, which by definition is given to us, rather than achieved by us, in terms of human psychological response? It isn't as though God doesn't save Caiaphas because he can't figure out how to convince him to repent. This notion of "what works" seems inapt with regard to divine action in history.

Blogger rumpole5 April 15, 2018 11:43 PM  

Re: "I would much rather have 10 honest commenters of average intelligence..."

As a documented member of a well populated section of the cognitive bell curve, I thank you for your encouragement and support!

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:44 PM  

No, because we also have a lot of experience about salvations where God clearly started the process while they were still actively rebellious against God. We can hear those people's testimonies. They don't sound ANYTHING like this.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 15, 2018 11:46 PM  

“Unequivocally, the wicked are to be loved. The entire raison d'etre of Christianity's mission element is precisely to go forth to the wicked, convert them and baptize them so that they might not perish.”

Not true.

You are inserting the word wicked where it is not used biblically or historically. Matt 28 does NOT say go forth to the wicked. It just says “go.” Jesus himself is clear that when a town rejects his disciples they ought to very insultingly brush the dirt of the town from their feet, leave and go elsewhere.

Wickedness is not the same as ignorance of the Gospel or even a person who has sinned. And a sinner who actually does repent is by definition not wicked. Was Abraham declared wicked because he was a liar? No. He was declared righteous because of his great faith. Was David declared wicked by God? No. He was beloved.

We need to stop conflating these terms just so we can be more comfortable in our faith. Hatred, evil, wickedness, sin...they are not the same things.

Blogger Markku April 15, 2018 11:50 PM  

When those conversions have dreams, visions and/or miracles at the end, it's practically always the case that the heart issue has already been dealt with for years. Then, in the end, the person comes to God in desperation, wanting to know if it's all true. Enter vision.

But look at this: Act 9:1 But Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest

That's where Saul was at the beginning of his journey. He clearly wasn't rebelling against Christ, he was only mistaken about his identity. The vision has such a fast and dramatic effect because this was a knowledge issue. Exactly like the end point of a rebellious person's salvation. The heart issues take time. The knowledge issue can be dealt with in one short moment.

Blogger Lazarus April 15, 2018 11:54 PM  

SIN, TRESPASS, INIQUITY, ETC.

Differing categories of sin, iniquity, and wickedness indicated by nomenclature.

Many sins are derived from fallen nature, wickedness is sought out and cultivated consciously.

Blogger Farinata April 15, 2018 11:56 PM  

@ 75
I don't buy it. What's the difference between a blimp and a zeppelin? They're different words, right?

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:00 AM  

Sin
chata'

to sin, miss, miss the way, go wrong, incur guilt, forfeit, purify from uncleanness
-to miss
-to sin, miss the goal or path of right and duty
-to incur guilt, incur penalty by sin, forfeit

Sin and wickedness absolutely are two different things. Wickedness (ra', and its derived words) is always associated with the heart and motivations. Josh already quoted "The LORD tests the righteous, but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence."

Blogger MLGunner April 16, 2018 12:01 AM  

Pretty simple to answer your two questions:
Do we hate the wicked or love them?
Jesus told his disciples to Love their neighbor, and when asked "who is my neighbor" he gave the parable of the Good Samaritan.
The thing is, the Samaritan never bothered to ask if the man he was helping was good or evil, he just helped him. Jesus also said that we should even love people who do evil to us personally, and not to take vengeance on them, but to give kindness for evil.
But then that is sin, not wickedness.
It is the difference between sinning in our life, and living for sin. Sin is "of" the devil, but the devil is "wicked" in and of himself.
To know the difference between the "wicked" and the "sinful" (which we all are sinful), it is supply and demand.
The sinful are receiving sin.
The wicked are giving it out.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:01 AM  

Sin is going astray from the path.

Wickedness is not even wanting to walk the path.

Blogger MLGunner April 16, 2018 12:06 AM  

@76
A blimp is a bag with no support, a zeppelin has a ridged structure and will hold it's shape even if deflated.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 12:10 AM  

Love is life, and the promotion and prolongation of life.

Ergo, hate is killing, or at best indifference to dying.

In these terms I am scripturally obliged to hate the wicked because by definition the wicked are actively working to destroy me and mine.

But I am neither scripturally obliged to have universally positive feelings towards all professing Christians nor negative feelings towards all unbelievers.

Frankly, a lot of believers piss me off and a lot of unbelievers are good friends.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:13 AM  

Seems like a distinction without much difference. Do we go astray from the path involuntarily? Of course not: sin and righteousness alike depend on the will.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:14 AM  

@80 is that actually the difference? Who knew?

Blogger John April 16, 2018 12:15 AM  

Markku,

Re: false teachers, yes of course. Never in dispute.

I'm saying that human psychology just doesn't work like that. The Pharisees saw Lazarus raised from the dead.

I had to double check, but AFAIK the Pharisees didn't see it: "Many of the Jews therefore, who had come with Mary and had seen what he did, believed in him, 46 but some of them went to the Pharisees and told them what Jesus had done. 47 So the chief priests and the Pharisees gathered the council"

No objection to saying the Pharisees hated Jesus more than Saul did and clearly had ulterior motives.

However: did Saul actively and purposely set himself against God? Insofar as he persecuted the Church, yes. Yes, he was mistaken, but, "They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, the hour is coming when whoever kills you will think he is offering service to God. 3 And they will do these things because they have not known the Father, nor me." John 16:2

Did he hate Jesus Christ? Certainly, as per the Parable of the Sheep and the Goats. (When he approved Steven's death, he may as well have approved of Jesus' death.) Also, John 15:23, "Whoever hates me hates my Father also."

I will check back tomorrow.

Blogger MLGunner April 16, 2018 12:16 AM  

@51
@Bogey (48):

Anthropomorphism! God does not have feelings like humans do!!! ~sarc

We are made in Gods image, all of the emotions we have are the same ones God has. God is a person. Not a "creature" like us, but a "person" none the less.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 12:16 AM  

There’s also a question of focus.

We’re commanded to “do good” to - or love - those who hate us etc, but we’re not commanded to sacrifice our families and entire civilization (including the church) to them. We’re not permitted to do so because we’re commanded to protect the weak from the strong, the prey from the predators.

I am commanded to accept certain things as a believer without taking vengeance for them; I am not permitted to stand idly by while those same things are done to others.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:16 AM  

We go astray out of momentary weakness, while in general wanting to walk the path. That is sin. The wicked don't even want to walk the path. And if you don't make that distinction, then you're stuck with this verse:

1 John 3:6 No one who abides in him sins; no one who sins has either seen him or known him.

Do you sin?

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:18 AM  

I had to double check, but AFAIK the Pharisees didn't see it

They didn't see the act of raising, but they clearly believed that Lazarus was now alive, because: Jhn 12:10 So the chief priests planned to put Laz'arus also to death,

Blogger Darwinite April 16, 2018 12:29 AM  

We are taught to love our neighbor, and to crush the head of the snake. Sin and wickedness are distinct. Sin is weakness and psychological projection, and we are all guilty of it, so must forgive each other. Wickedness however implies a pagan disregard for the value of human life. Sin falls short of glory; wickedness opposes glory.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:29 AM  

I know that ESV translates 1 John 3:6 as "keeps on sinning" but the Greek doesn't say that. It simply says "sins", in the aorist tense. So, either there is a distinction, or we're all going to hell.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:32 AM  

@87 I'm not stuck with the verse, because 1st John uses sin to refer to a pattern of wicked behavior, which would of course not characterize a Christian. But as it happens, a few verses earlier in that same chapter we see a definition of sin: breaking the law. Now the law is summarized as love for God and neighbor. It follows, therefore, that sin implies a defect in love. That makes it a matter of desire.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:34 AM  

The argument for sin as a pattern is contextual - John says "no saint sins", then talks about confessing the fact that we all sin and how to be forgiven.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:39 AM  

With that, you already create two categories. One damns, the other, not necessarily. I argue that wickedness is aorist-sinning and the normal present-tense sinning is what we usually mean by "sinning". Meaning, straying from the path, while wanting to walk it.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:41 AM  

He's also plainly talking in generalities:
3:7 Little children, let no man deceive you: he that doeth righteousness is righteous, even as he is righteous.
8 He that committeth sin is of the devil; for the devil sinneth from the beginning.

Just as one individual good act doesn't make you righteous, a single sin does not make you diabolical..

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:42 AM  

Now, if you don't like the name "wickedness" for the damning category, that's your business. But you still have the same two categories. Names don't matter. A fart by any other name would still smell as foul.

Blogger pyrrhus April 16, 2018 12:42 AM  

I don't think it is necessary to hate the wicked, though most will...I do think it's necessary to eliminate them from society.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:44 AM  

By "generally wanting to walk the path" do you mean "except for the moments in which we lapse into sin"?

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 12:47 AM  

Mostly I am trying to say that sin is sin: it's all driven by rebellion. The advantage of the believer is that by grace we overcome that. But my lust or anger is basically the same as any other fellow's; it's just mine are forgiven and I do them less and less.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:47 AM  

Yes. For the wicked, it doesn't even occur to walk the path. Hence, they won't repent, nor would it even occur to them to repent.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:49 AM  

Absolutely sin is sin. But we still have to make something with these outlier verses, that don't quite fit with our normal understanding of "sin". We have to have some other category for them, or else admit to contradictions in the Bible.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 12:58 AM  

None of us deserve to be saved, no matter how "good" (in human relative terms) our deeds and/or motivations are. But still, I see a pattern with who God saves in the Bible. Jesus often didn't even bother to talk with the actively rebellious and when he did, he went straight to full aggression. With some, he was gentle, and lo and behold: These people appear to get saved as a rule.

Then there's Cornelius the "god-fearer". He wasn't part of the sacrificial system, nor was he circumcised. (The word implies that by definition). Yet, God made his servants take a huge detour just for this one guy. Why THIS one? Why not some random gentile who curses God's name?

It seems to be an undeniable pattern in the Bible, that God takes heart issues into consideration, even though you cannot appeal to them and think you deserve salvation due to them.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 1:04 AM  

So, again, both approaches need to be in our toolbox. Paul and Peter could have been wrong in their assessment, but that didn't deter them from speaking with extreme harshness with some, and gentleness with some. We'll probably get it wrong sometimes, but if we only use one of those modes, we'll CERTAINLY get it wrong.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 1:09 AM  

I'd prefer to say that God prepares the hearts of his people to receive his word. But I see what you're getting at.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 1:12 AM  

If the upshot of this is to demonstrate that Christians can speak sharply sometimes, we already agree.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 1:12 AM  

What I think you're trying to avoid, is that anyone would say "God saw something in me, and that's why he saved me."

Yes, he DID see something, but we probably don't want to hear his itemized list of the totality of what he saw in us. It won't be pretty.

Blogger Ceerilan April 16, 2018 1:14 AM  

In the last half century, the west has faced massive debt, the destruction of its cultures, the literal rape of it's women, and massive population replacement. If that isn't a curse brought on by sin, I don't know what is.

Blogger Vox's Video Editor April 16, 2018 1:21 AM  

If the wicked are in a different category than the 'merely sinful' does the Christian have the ability to discern who they are with the necessary precision? The several verses about them characterize their hearts as perverted and crooked. Heart and mind reading is what God does. The Bible says man is too prone to judge by outward appearance. Who would have been able to know that the apostle Paul (as Saul) would repent?

Then again, Christians have the mind of Christ and we are obviously called to exercise discernment. And we are commanded not to throw pearls before swine, indicating that we can know who the swine are. So we shouldn't expose the Gospel repeatedly to those who would trample it. And there is the whole shaking the dust off your feet principle. We are also called to separate from our brethren who repeatedly sow discord and refuse to repent, both characteristics of the wicked.

So yes, we should hate the wicked, especially by opposing them, exposing them, and shunning them. Based on other Scripture, we should not execute vengeance upon them. We should not slander them. We should not be bitter about them. If they repent, like Saul/Paul, then we can receive them back.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 1:30 AM  

@105 precisely my concern. I don't object to an account of God's choice that makes it non-random: Peter was chosen for chief apostle because he failed in a unique way that helped to fortify him against pride (and a bunch of other less obvious reasons). As long as the X factor isn't a positive attribute unique to Christians like a disposition to accept salvation.

Blogger Markku April 16, 2018 1:36 AM  

I'm of reformed soteriology, it just annoys me how we seem to be saying self-contradictory things so often. "So, does God simply spin the roulette, and determine who is saved that way?" No, we say. So, does he consider the person, then? OMG NO NO NO NO NO!

Well, which is it? You can't have it non-random, and at the same time claim to know that the person was definitely not a factor even in the slightest sense.

I rather say, the person may factor in, and we have no idea how, or how much it factors because God won't tell us, but if he did lay out his entire reasoning for why he chose us, we almost certainly wouldn't feel proud about it.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 1:47 AM  

The key is "so that no man should boast". So God can pick me for any reasons, as long as those reasons do not constitute grounds for boasting on my part. It's the difference between acknowledging that my particular features fit in somewhere in the grand jigsaw puzzle of history, and asserting that I converted because I was wiser or better than those who did not. Orthodoxy compels me to accept the former and deny the latter with equal vehemence.

Blogger jb April 16, 2018 2:09 AM  

Being an ordained Confessional Lutheran, Em., I do not submit to the charge of being a churchian.

However - God hates and detests the wicked,, for they not only speak openly against the Gospel of forgiveness ins Christ through grace, the adamantly live in opposition to it. This is their for doing so -

Mark 3:28-30: "Truly I tell you, all sins and blasphemes will be forgiven for the sons of men. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven, but is guilty of an eternal sin.

EOS

Blogger tublecane April 16, 2018 2:19 AM  

"I can present the points underneath, and the points are explicit."

Huh? That's a bit of a contradiction.

The "I can't even"/"wow just wow" crowd often like to play they secret code/plain as day game. Usually phrased in the manner of "subtext has become text." Yet somehow we still need their analysis to bring out the meaning. So I guess it wasn't subtext after all.

Basically, they're saying simultaneously, "Oh my God, I can't believe he has the audacity to come out and say it openly!...And aren't I a smart guy for seeing through his charade!"

Blogger tublecane April 16, 2018 2:23 AM  

"hate these PEOPLE because they...belong to a group that is disproportionately likely to do evil."

No, that is not in that quote, and I have never read it on this site.

Blogger tublecane April 16, 2018 2:25 AM  

"murder is totes OK (because war)"

What is he, a Quaker? Doesn't he adhere to any Just War Theory?

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 2:26 AM  

Wickedness is the commission of sins.

If the fruit of the tree is wickedness, the tree is evil, thus, hate the wicked.

Blogger Laramie Hirsch April 16, 2018 2:41 AM  

I find that a LOT of people are intellectually incapable of having a red-pulled race realist discussion. They're too emotional. Wright has been no exception, and it almost seems as though his religion is more Americanist Pluralism than Catholicism.

I think they assign these lies to race realists because "they can't roll with this." They can't keep up. The subject overloads their emotions, and they cannot receive your words for what they are.

For what it's worth, I attempted to open minds tonight on his blog, and I'm curious to see how it'll go when I wake up tomorrow:

Even my Black Lives Matter friend wants a return of her black communities. People want to be with their own kind for the most part. Forcing everyone to be pluralistic is like forcing everyone to be vegan. It doesn't go over well.

In the Catholic parish structure, ethnic federalism was the defacto policy for ages. Evidence of this is seen in the historical parish structure of Europe and other regions. Even in America, there's still parishes where ethnic federalism is respected; I speak of Latino, black, and Vietnamese parishes that remain threatened in a culture that oppresses us with pluralism.

When the Catholic Church in America embraced Pan-Catholicism in the 1960s, it was under pressure of the changing American political scene, not because suddenly racial awareness was a sin. WASP Anglophiles utilized this concept of Pan-Catholicism as a tool in their neighborhood-to-neighborhood social engineering programs to destroy the Catholic neighborhoods of Northern cities. The result was an ethnic cleansing of those neighborhoods, so that the Irish Catholics, German Catholics, Polish Catholics and so on were defanged, and made politically harmless. Eventually these neighborhoods disappeared, as the ethnic Catholics--who all that time were practicing ethnic federalism--were atomized and pushed into suburbia, as the government started bussing in blacks to their former neighborhoods, and the Church was beating the drum of Pan-Catholicism.

Thanks to all of this, those ethnic enclaves of Catholics from the Old World became simply known as "white" by the WASP establishment that destroyed them, and a lot of them either left the Church to become Protestants, or they left religion altogether.

Pan-Catholicism was a major contributor to the destruction of Catholicism in America.

Blogger Pax_Romana April 16, 2018 2:50 AM  

I once heard it described: Sin is when you nock an arrow, aim at the target, and miss by accident. Everyone does it. "Transgression," is when you nock an arrow, aim at literally anything else than what you're supposed to aim at, and fire. "Wickedness" is when you nock an arrow and shoot your archery instructor.

Might be a little oversimplified (in terms of culpability, etc), but it helped me understand.

Blogger Bogey April 16, 2018 2:53 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Bogey April 16, 2018 2:55 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Shane Sullivan April 16, 2018 2:57 AM  

@116 Wasn't the United States largely founded as a Anglo-Protestant Union? Why was it wrong for the WASPs to try to unite all of the European immigrants under a common (white)identity?

Blogger The Kurgan April 16, 2018 3:08 AM  

This is the kind of post I enjoy the most from VD.
Clear, unadulterated theological positions.
Truly, as I have said from the start, I believe Churchians are strategically worse than outright enemies. They need to be thoroughly prevented from ever entering any sort of of organisation with a rabid zeal. Imagine what a set of men that unequivocally reject conservatism in general and outright who organise themselves can achieve.
Say like the Dread ilk...
Oh wait...

Blogger The Kurgan April 16, 2018 3:20 AM  

Thank you DJ! Edward Isaac, you’re most certainly not coming at this from any kind of Christian perspective, never mind a Catholic one. You are DEFINITELY coming at it from a Beegoglian one though. And of course he is a satanic apostate and heretic (assuming he ever was even a nominal Christian, which personally I don’t believe he was).
And yes, I am Catholic (there are a few thousand of us left out of the huge Churchian majority)

Blogger Bogey April 16, 2018 3:23 AM  

Need to find a study with more detail than that, sorry about the deletions.

Blogger The Kurgan April 16, 2018 3:23 AM  

Indeed

Blogger Bogey April 16, 2018 3:42 AM  

Found it, that bit about the unforgivable sin

...about 11 minutes in.

Blogger Dirk Manly April 16, 2018 3:46 AM  

Farinata, it is really quite simple:

Do you seek to follow the will of God, or of Satan?

A) If Satan, then you are wicked.

The Pharisees were actively advocating and perpetuating the will of Satan (whether they said so, or not) and opposing the will of God. IF they had changed their behavior after being demonstrated wrong (the many debates in which Jesus cleaned their clocks) or learning that they were opposing actual righteousness (raising Lazarus from the dead), they CONTINUED to oppose Jesus. At that point, they are no longer ignorant, or even mistaken -- they are taking active measures against a PROVEN Godly person. Their DESIRE was to do that which was wicked, for the sole purpose of opposing God's will. THAT is what makes them wicked.


If God, then not wicked.
Saul was deceived by his fellow Pharisees, and so committed wicked acts (out of ignorance). When presented with the truth, it wasn't so much that his heart changed -- he merely realized that his prior activities and conclusions were wrong; he incorporated new knowledge (Jesus *IS* who he says he is), and promptly changed his behavior. When he was doing wicked things, he THOUGHT he was doing Godly things -- when he found out those were wicked things, he promptly stopped them -- BECAUSE HE WANTED TO DO GODLY THINGS. That makes him NOT WICKED.

Blogger Laramie Hirsch April 16, 2018 4:01 AM  

@120 Shane Sullivan

Wasn't the United States largely founded as a Anglo-Protestant Union? Why was it wrong for the WASPs to try to unite all of the European immigrants under a common (white)identity?

I think you're missing my point. Sharing my quote from his blog has nothing to do with Catholic America vs Protestant America.

Wright (and I) are both Catholics. Wright, however, denies the efficacy of ethnic nationalism and race realism--the idea that like people enjoy the company of like people.

I'm showing Wright in a context he MIGHT grasp that ethnic nationalism was a good for Catholic neighborhoods (which he should like, since he's Catholic), and that their disintegration by the government importing blacks into their neighborhood was a bad--that people can't just "switch on" to pluralism and Pan-Catholicism and survive. I'm challenging his Churchian view (which seems to me more and more by the day like pluralism worship).

This fits into the theme of VD's original post, about how many people struggle or simply can't accept certain dialectic, even if it's spelled out for them. It fits the theme we are all discovering that people are too emotional to even handle this brand of discussion.

Blogger Shane Sullivan April 16, 2018 4:27 AM  

@127 My apologies for misunderstanding, that is indeed a fine point.

Blogger Wynn Lloyd April 16, 2018 4:42 AM  

They can't grasp any kind of nuanced view.
To them, hatred of imans preaching war on the English and of the flooding of that country with invaders, is no different than hatred of a two year old Pakistani girl with pink bows in her hair, laughing in a basket of golden retriever puppies while mom and dad look lovingly on.

Somehow they can grasp the difference when it comes to our wars. They can understand fighting against Iraq or Iran, despising its leadership, and even its culture, while not wishing death on its children. But also putting the future of our own children first, and doing whatever we have to do to secure them. They allow this for Israel. They can't make that connection when it comes to resisting the invasion of immigrants in our own homeland, though.
No one hates that Pakistani two year old. Or at least not many. I wish her the best. I want her to have a great life. In her own people's homeland, which is actually best for her and all involved.
I DO hate her Jihadist uncle, without reservation. And I DO hate the traitors who brought her family in. And I do hate that there are more and more coming to the US every year.

It's not all that complex, but something is wrong with these guys. Any ingroup preference already sets them off. Actually hating the destroyers of our people and civilization sends them into fits. Lame.

Blogger Tanjil Bren April 16, 2018 4:48 AM  

"Wickedness" is when you nock an arrow and shoot your archery instructor.
Unless he ate your dog.
Then it's divine retribution.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 5:29 AM  

Markku

We keep saying contradictory things because our whole concept of salvation is upside down.

Vast majority of Christians think in terms of some form of “decision theology” where salvation is passively made available and we have to take or “accept” it in some way.

But salvation is a gift that is given to ALL men and has been “from before the foundation of te world”.

Like Adam, some will KEEP what we’ve been given, some will throw it away in a spasm of immediate emotional gratification.

God hates gammas!

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 5:40 AM  

God decided Adam should live, so Adam became alive.

Adam decided to sin, the automatic consequence of which is death.

God decided the whole race should not die because of Adsm’s sin so Adam remained alive, as have we all sinners since.

Some of us will decide to keep the life we’ve been given, some will decide to throw it away.

God’s decision was made before creation.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 5:47 AM  

To put that in terms of your question, the person’s character determines our actions and our actions determine whether we keep what we’ve been given or we throw it away.

Blogger Beau April 16, 2018 6:05 AM  

Vast majority of Christians think in terms of some form of “decision theology” where salvation is passively made available and we have to take or “accept” it in some way.

Peter’s sermon on Pentecost is the exemplar of persuasive preaching; there is nothing passive whatsoever in this address. Peter aimed his proclamation of the facts at obtaining the individual’s decision to repent. Acts 2:41 reports,

And with many other words he bore witness and continued to exhort them, saying, “Save yourself from this crocked generation.”

Peter called for decisive action, “Repent and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins.” He did not do an infomercial.

Blogger Rantor April 16, 2018 6:06 AM  

Tanjil, there’s a haiku in that... not great, but working on it...

Wicked arrow flies
evil teacher dies bringing
heavenly justice

Blogger Lovekraft April 16, 2018 6:09 AM  

Wow. 133 comments as of this reading and the post only went up around 9 hours ago. Hornets nest got poked.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 6:12 AM  

Beau

If you can read Paul’s entire body of work and conclude that he advocated we save ourselves then I doubt any useful conversation between us is possible.

More generously, I wasn’t talking about anything passive either. Keeping the life we’ve been given, keeping the sabbath, keeping the faith, keeping the commandments statutes and judgements, is anything but passive.

Au contraire.

Blogger GAHCindy April 16, 2018 6:15 AM  

"Yes, I hate them with total hatred, for your enemies are my enemies."
Psalm 129:32

Blogger Beau April 16, 2018 6:18 AM  

God’s decision was made before creation.

We have been warned by Jesus, No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Repentance is a decision, left unmade we perish.

Blogger Rantor April 16, 2018 6:22 AM  

As for the church, Christ told us to throw false teachers and unrepentant sinners out from our midst. We are to purge them, deliver them over to Satan... 1Tim 1. The unrepentant should be treated “as you would a pagan or tax collector”

And being that tax day is coming... biblically speaking, just how should we treat tax collectors?

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 6:24 AM  

Beau

I’m neither Calvinist nor teaching predestination.

I agree that decisions are necessary. Vital, even.

You cannot decide to save yourself.

You can decide to condemn yourself.

Blogger Beau April 16, 2018 6:37 AM  

If you can read Paul’s entire body of work and conclude that he advocated we save ourselves then I doubt any useful conversation between us is possible.

I doubt any useful conversation between us is possible if you wish to take two word expression, Save yourself, employed by Peter on Pentecost as a catch-all for the sum total of another apostle's teaching. Such precision is breathtaking.

I did notice; however, that while you reject my explanation that Peter was aiming at obtaining a decision, you provided no explanation for his use of the urgent phrase Save yourself. You may not like my explanation, but it addresses the text as used by the apostle Peter at that date and time. What is your alternative reading of Peter's usage of this phrase?

Blogger David Rohm April 16, 2018 6:58 AM  

I liken wickedness to iniquity, which is the underlying fallen nature and propensity to sin, while sin is the resulting actual violation of God’s commandments.

Blogger Tobias Templo April 16, 2018 7:13 AM  

@Resident Moron,

Yes, you can decide to save yourself if we base it in the context of what Peter said in verse Acts 2:41.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 7:46 AM  

Beau

You quoted that text as evidence of your position. Now you’re disavowing it.

Maybe you could tell me what your position is?

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 7:47 AM  

Tobias

Is deciding to save yourself a work of your own?

In consequence of your decision, is God somehow obliged to keep you alive?

Blogger Dirk Manly April 16, 2018 8:20 AM  

!146

> Is deciding to save yourself a work of your own?

Yes. That decision is the most infinitesimal amount of the work needed to be saved from damnation, yet it is all that is REQUIRED of you to be saved.


>> In consequence of your decision, is God somehow obliged to keep you alive?

Christians get slaughtered by Moslems a lot, so obviously not.
In fact, in general, no. Salvation does not mean freedom from earthly death, or else we would have a lot of 2000 year old people wandering around the shores of the Eastern Med. And none of the apostles would have been executed by the Romans and others. Your time on earth is limited. What happens AFTER that is eternal. How you want THAT to turn out is your decision -- choose wisely.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 8:27 AM  

Dirk,

I’m pretty sure few readers need it explained that salvation is more than this life.

I reject any doctrine that says any work of ours, however small, can save any of us.

It speaks to me of a massive misapprehension of the nature and consequences of sin.

Perhaps we can leave this as we seem now quite far from the OP topic?

Fortunately, nobody’s salvation depends on agreeing with me.

God’s blessings on you and yours.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 16, 2018 8:33 AM  

According to the Bible, through the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, a Christian most certainly has the ability to know who is wicked and who is not. Understanding and Wisdom, coupled with Knowledge, and buttressed by Right Cousel are imbued in the confirmed Christian by the power of the Holy Spirit and allows him or her to recognize the wicked and discern an evil heart from simply a sinful person. Finally, John declares Christians can also recognize a true brother in faith. We will know they are Christian by their Love.

Honestly, for the Spirit filled believed, this is easy.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 16, 2018 8:38 AM  

Ha! I don’t know if He hates gammas but he sure as hell got pissed at a bunch of them when the “gamma’ed.” Gideon, Moses, Aaron, Job, Jonah, even Peter felt the wrath the couple times he “gamma’ed.”

Blogger dienw April 16, 2018 8:40 AM  

Christianity is founded on Reality. Period. We Christians by necessity ground ourselves in the Real, not in the myths of politics, science and pleasing to the ear "theology."

We do not know the whole of reality; therefore we err; but we are commanded to love the truth/Truth and hence to rethink our positions as we learn more of what is true. Unfortunately, we are not taught what is true in our youth and we spend decades unlearning and learning anew.

At one time theology was called the queen of philosophy; so should the bible be considered the queen of knowledge; for, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

Of physiology and character, I happened this weekend upon the topic of generational curses and epigenetics and how the sins of the fathers - and mothers too- alter their DNA and these changes are passed on to the children; of course the changes go beyond physical to the spiritual nature of the children.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 16, 2018 8:40 AM  

Maybe it’s splitting hairs, but God said if they sin, they will die. Not that he will immediately kill them. Did Adam die? Yes.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 8:45 AM  

@ 117,
I don't think that paradigm holds up, because sin is not an accident. It's not like tripping over an uneven sidewalk or forgetting your kid's birthday. Sins are things like coveting and wrath, conscious, deliberate actions that you could choose not to do.

@126 "do you seek to serve God or Satan?"

totally agree that's the main question. But no-one seeks to serve God.

Blogger Conor Foran April 16, 2018 8:47 AM  

Our works cannot save us. Only grace saves us. But Faith without works is dead.

Our own free choice is a necessary prerequisite for our salvation, albeit wholly insufficient of its own. Yet if He had not first chosen us, we could not choose Him.

Like many things, it is a Mystery.

Blogger Beau April 16, 2018 8:48 AM  

You quoted that text as evidence of your position. Now you’re disavowing it.

Not at all. I stated my position. I stand by it, i.e, that Peter's usage of Save yourself is evidence that he is aiming for a decision, repentance, from his hearers.

Now, per the rules of the blog, as I've already asked, what is your alternative reading of Peter's usage of the phrase Save yourself?

Blogger S1AL April 16, 2018 9:06 AM  

If you throw a drowning man a rope, he still has to grab it. And thus save himself. But he could not have been saved without your intervention.

Anyone take issue with that analogy?

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 9:12 AM  

@156 If we agree that the one throwing the rope also designed the hands of the drowning man and decided since before history whether or not he would use them to grab it... it's a great analogy.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 16, 2018 9:15 AM  

“salvation is a gift that is given to ALL men“

I might be splitting hairs here again but I don’t think scripture says anywhere that SALVATION is a gift given to all men. Paul writes clearly that Christ died as an expiation for the sins of the whole world. That’s a bit different than saying salvation is given to all men.

Blogger DJ | AMDG April 16, 2018 9:20 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger dienw April 16, 2018 9:25 AM  

Matthew wrote:Markku wrote:Compare Jesus's opening salvo to Saul and Nicodemus, to any of the rest of the pharisees and scribes. They are as if from a different planets. Why do you think this is?

'Cause they were "Judeans by birth"?


No, because they were Judahites, members of the historical tribes of the house of Judah. Remember, the priests were mostly Edomites as were the Herodian kings. Saul was a Benjamite a member of one of the three tribes comprising the House of Judah.

Blogger Nate April 16, 2018 9:28 AM  

"Should the Christian hate the wicked or should he love them? That is the question that I have yet to see a Churchian answer directly, without equivocation or dissembling or substituting words. And I also have an important follow-up question: is there a difference between sin and wickedness?"

No man can run so far from God that he can escape Prevenient Grace. That is to say that no matter how far down the path of wickedness you go... God will still be tapping you on the shoulder... saying "This is the way home."

The wicked are our enemies. But we are specifically called to love our enemies. This is tension but it is not contradiction. You show love for your enemy not by capitulation or surrender... but by remembering that each is an individual. So when you come upon a wounded enemy soldier on the battle field you save him if you can. you dress his wounds. You treat your captures with basic decency.

as for sin and wickedness... yes. There is a difference. Sin is anything that separates us from God. so... almost anything can become sin. Wickedness is merely a subset of immoral behaviors... which is much less dangerous than sin. Wickedness is overt and obvious. Sin can be quiet and covert.

Blogger John April 16, 2018 9:36 AM  

@161 Upvoted by a confessional Lutheran, especially: "The wicked are our enemies. But we are specifically called to love our enemies. This is tension but it is not contradiction. You show love for your enemy not by capitulation or surrender... but by remembering that each is an individual. So when you come upon a wounded enemy soldier on the battle field you save him if you can. you dress his wounds. You treat your captures with basic decency. "

Blogger S1AL April 16, 2018 9:40 AM  

"If we agree that the one throwing the rope also designed the hands of the drowning man and decided since before history whether or not he would use them to grab it... it's a great analogy."

Freaking Calvinists.

"No man can run so far from God that he can escape Prevenient Grace."

As I recall, there's this but about blaspheming the Holy Spirit, which may or may not be the same as rejecting Christ after receiving salvation. Both of which are named as unforgivable.

Blogger Nate April 16, 2018 9:50 AM  

"As I recall, there's this but about blaspheming the Holy Spirit, which may or may not be the same as rejecting Christ after receiving salvation. Both of which are named as unforgivable."

that doesn't mean what you think it means. It means rejecting Grace. It is through Grace that we are saved. Thus if you reject Grace.. you cannot be saved.

Blogger dienw April 16, 2018 9:51 AM  

@163
"If we agree that the one throwing the rope also designed the hands of the drowning man and decided since before history whether or not he would use them to grab it... it's a great analogy."

Freaking Calvinists.


The analogy is a restatement and expansion on the metaphor of the potter and the clay; Calvin has nothing to do with it.

Blogger freddie_mac April 16, 2018 10:06 AM  

Over the past few months, I have become more and more convinced that all Christians must read the Bible regularly. I'm finishing up 2 Samuel, and am continually astonished by the foibles/outright defiance of the Jews and God's capacity to still love humanity.

Should the Christian hate the wicked or should he love them?
Hate the wicked, which are entirely different from the sinner. Sinners can turn back to God (hate the sin, love the sinner); wicked have rejected God and Jesus entirely.

is there a difference between sin and wickedness?
Yes, absolutely. We're all sinners, no matter how much we might try not to be. Sin is distancing ourselves from God through our actions (or lack thereof), but wickedness is deliberately turning away and rejecting God which is therefore reflected in our actions. For a modern example of wickedness, look at Rotherham and all the other British towns: the rapists are evil, but authorities who knew and did nothing are indeed wicked.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 10:11 AM  

That is your understanding of being made in God's image. But, is it correct?

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 10:15 AM  

Ah. I have been smiling at your posts. I do not recall you posting this much in the past.
It is good study to hash out this issues.
Good to see your passion and striving for surgical dividing.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 10:17 AM  

"The analogy is a restatement and expansion on the metaphor of the potter and the clay"

Untrue. That the potter forms the pot does not mean that he breaks it.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 10:20 AM  

Christ died for all.
All are called.
All do not respond affirmatively.
The Called are ones that respond "yes Lord."
To them, the right is given to be called "children if God."

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 10:25 AM  

To die in unbelief is to be eternally separated from God. That is the unpardonable sin. Before death, salvation is always at reach.

Blogger S1AL April 16, 2018 10:31 AM  

"The analogy is a restatement and expansion on the metaphor of the potter and the clay; Calvin has nothing to do with it."

My analogy was, his is not. You would do well to refer to the original verse from which Paul drew the analogy. Namely, the portion where God says that the shaping of the pot is the result of the clay's choice.

"that doesn't mean what you think it means. It means rejecting Grace. It is through Grace that we are saved. Thus if you reject Grace.. you cannot be saved."

What's your basis for that statement? Jesus very clearly said: "[it] will not be forgiven, in this age or the age to come."

"To die in unbelief is to be eternally separated from God. That is the unpardonable sin. Before death, salvation is always at reach."

See above. Unless you have some clear resolution of Jesus' statement, I'm not going to accept this notion.

Blogger James Dixon April 16, 2018 10:35 AM  

> Rhetoric is generally only useful on the stupid and those who can't control their emotions

I.e., the vast majority of people, of whom at least one of the two is true. Everyone has problems controlling their emotions at times.

> Should the Christian hate the wicked or should he love them?

An excellent question, actually. Christ, like his father, obviously hated them. We are to strive to be like Christ. But there is an important difference: Unlike Christ, we can't see into the hearts of mean and discern their true nature. So I'm not sure what the correct answer is.

> And I also have an important follow-up question: is there a difference between sin and wickedness?

Obviously, since we all sin, but God doesn't hate all of us. The exact difference is probably that God hates those who know him and willfully choose sin over him.

A lot of comments to read, but I'll have to do that as time allows, which it doesn't now.

Blogger Harry C April 16, 2018 10:41 AM  

Best advice to even the good faith reader - don't 'speak' for Vox in other forums and don't think you're the exception just because you're also a Christian. 'You can't Box the Vox' - he's the bane of Calvinists while affirming God hates sinners (which they love, but makes Arminians/Catholics cry); he's something like an open theist, but again, 'something like' defies easy categorisation. He takes the Scriptures very seriously, despises scientism but I'm not sure whether I've ever heard him state categorically how he thinks Genesis should be read in terms of earth age and the issues that there adjacent lie. In sum, don't speak for him. If you're an enemy, it could get you banned for being a dullard and a bellend. If you're a friend, it can lead to an accidental falling out. Vox is a force of nature. You don't speak on behalf of a tornado. You get out of its way.

Blogger dienw April 16, 2018 10:41 AM  

Azure Amaranthine wrote:"The analogy is a restatement and expansion on the metaphor of the potter and the clay"

Untrue. That the potter forms the pot does not mean that he breaks it.


Yes it does. See Pharaoh.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 10:46 AM  

"Yes it does. See Pharaoh."

Nice try, but Pharaoh isn't directly relevant. This is:

2 Peter 3:9 "The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance."

Regardless, we should probably get back on topic.

Blogger William Milheim April 16, 2018 10:50 AM  

My Bible says that all were lumped under sin with the one man Adam so that God could show mercy to all through one man Jesus Christ. It also says that His will is to restore all of creation. So maybe since sin and death are thrown into the lake of fire, that means the sin and death in all/everyone (the old man) is burned up. The new man, purified by fire, is the one transformed through grace—he can’t take all the sin and wickedness into the new creation so it is burned off. Some are transformed in this life when they recognize the faithfulness of Jesus Christ. Others recognize His faithfulness upon resurrection when every knee will bow and every tongue acknowledge who He is and what he has accomplished.

Do not frustrate the grace of God. He just may be bigger and more amazing than we think.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 10:55 AM  

@ 172 - your analogy posited two essentially independent entities, neither of whom created the other, who just so happen to find themselves at opposite ends of the rope. But there would be no absurdity if the situation were reversed - if A were in the boat and B were in the water.

That doesn't map very precisely onto a relationship between God and man, where the saving-saved relationship is a metaphysical necessity. There's a reason that Paul's analogy in Romans 9 compares a man to an inanimate object.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 10:55 AM  

dienw, let me see if I can explain better.

To sin is to be subject to death. To be without sin is to be free from the penalty of death. In order for the pot to be "broken" (perished) it must have sinned.

Your statement that the potter, in making the pot, also breaks it, necessitates that God produce both a sinful desire in the pot, and that the pot have no choice but to wantonly follow each desire it experiences.

Even if the hardening of Pharaoh's heart leads to sinful desires, it does not force him to follow through on the actions in accordance with those desires.

Blogger S1AL April 16, 2018 10:59 AM  

"There's a reason that Paul's analogy in Romans 9 compares a man to an inanimate object."

I don't remember any indication that Romans 9 refers to "a man". Indeed, if you go back to the verses to which Paul refers, directly and indirectly, you will find that each of them refers to groups and nations - not individuals.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 11:02 AM  

@180 - Romans 9:21 "Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one vessel for honored use and one vessel for dishonorable use?" Potters are typically humans...

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 11:08 AM  

"There's a reason that Paul's analogy in Romans 9 compares a man to an inanimate object."

That an object is inanimate does not mean it is inflexible. The Aristoteleian proof of the existence of God would posit that God is (in one sense) the actuator eventually underlying all things. This would mean that God provided the force for the pot to be shaped. It does not mean that he directs the formed shape to the utmost extent, though he undoubtedly directs some of the shape.

So far as the spirit of a man is his connection to God, and the spirit can direct the body if it lives, the life coming from God can be accepted or refused (causing death).

Any potter will tell you that regardless how steady their hand is, the clay for one pot and the next is not quite exactly the same. It will produce different visible coloration and patterns in the kiln, even if the surface is the same shape.

@Farinata 181, you missed S1AL's point. Even still, God can make one man a cripple and the next a gifted athlete, matching the dishonorable and the honorable vessel. This does nothing to decide that one will end in heaven and the other in hell.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 11:16 AM  

I am puzzled by your argument from Aristotle. If you want to talk Christian theology, let's stick with Christians.

I am sure that potters say a great many things. Most of them didn't invent clay.

Go read Romans 9, then come back and we can talk about whether Paul had sin and judgment in mind, or the next Olympic games.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 11:22 AM  

Beau

My position is that he cannot have contradicted himself because he also wrote that if we have any part in our own salvation then God owes it to us, but in great contradistinction it is entirely a gift.

See also my answer to S1AL, below.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 11:27 AM  

"I am puzzled by your argument from Aristotle. If you want to talk Christian theology, let's stick with Christians."

I'm actually referring to an updated versions of the Aristotleian proof of the existence of God, laid out by Edward Feser.

"I am sure that potters say a great many things. Most of them didn't invent clay."

And yet they still know more about pots than you or I. Or are you claiming to speak for God?

"Go read Romans 9"

I've previously memorized the chapter, as well as 2, 3, 5, 7, 8, 12, and 16. Do you wish to continue putting on airs? I'm quite familiar with vessels of wrath, I actually use the verse from time to time here on this site, though I disagree with your calvinist interpretation.

Look at the very last verse.

Blogger Resident Moron™ April 16, 2018 11:27 AM  

S1AL,

Adam was given eternal life; conditionl, perhaps but if he’d not sinned he’d yet be alive.

So the more accurate analogy is, if you pluck a drowning man bodily from the water you have saved him. But he can choose thereafter to follow the laws of life and stay alive, or he can choose to jum back in and end himself.

But he could not have been saved without your intervention.

Nor was his salvation his decision but Christ died “once for ALL men”.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 11:41 AM  

@185 the analogy of the potter in v. 21 is plainly an answer to the questions posed immediately prior: "Will God still find fault? for who resists his will?" Ergo, the analogy is a direct reference to sin and judgment, hence heaven and hell; there is nothing at all in there about honor or dishonor in the social, human sense of those words.

Anonymous Anonymous April 16, 2018 11:44 AM  

This whole discussion reminds me of a few aphorisms by Nicolás Gómez Dávila:

"Nothing is more dangerous for faith than to frequent the company of believers. The unbeliever restores our faith."

"I listen to every homily with involuntary irony.
My religion, just like my philosophy, comes down to trusting in God."

"The belief of an intelligent person -- any belief -- starts to waver when he listens to his fellow believers."

Regarding the pastor: I don't see how the sermons are important, but then again I'm unable to attend Churches here in Germany anyway: Protestants or Catholics is the choice, both are cucked and SJW-infested.

C. S. Lewis, for what it's worth, found the music awful and the sermons dull. To quote the great Colombian again:

"The ineptitude and folly of the bishops’ and popes’ chatter would disturb us, if we old Christians had not fortunately learned as little children to sleep during the sermon."

Someone mentioned the heretical Second Vatican Council, which was completely rejected by Don Nicolás -- as any real Christian should:

"Tongues of fire didn’t descend upon the Second Vatican Council, as they did upon the first assembly of the apostles, but a stream of fire – a Feuerbach."

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 11:47 AM  

"the analogy of the potter in v. 21 is plainly an answer to the questions posed immediately prior: "Will God still find fault? for who resists his will?""

The analogy of the potter is referring to Israel and the Gentiles. Pharaoh is something like an anecdote in that comparison. This is why I said you missed S1AL's point about it comparing nations rather than individuals.

Try again.

"Ergo, the analogy is a direct reference to sin and judgment, hence heaven and hell"

More or less yes, but irrelevant regardless. The Scriptures are quite clear that God has made his Grace available for all to choose or despise(and die). That God had/has the authority to make that choice does not mean that he chose the way you imagine.

Anonymous Anonymous April 16, 2018 11:48 AM  

@81: You are to die for your faith, like the 21 Coptic Christians who were beheaded by Muslims. "Love" is not the prolongation of life. The Bios is not the highest value for a Christian, as even Cardinal Martini acknowledges.

Dying is my gain, as Paul wrote. Kierkegaard's first sermon was based on these verses. Life is not to be loved, we are to hate our life.

Blogger Farinata April 16, 2018 11:58 AM  

@188

I notice you got all fuzzy on the details of the chapter once I called you on it. Care to be more specific?

But sure, God makes his grace available to all. He also chooses some to save, and always saves those. He also chooses some to damn, and they don't get saved. You gotta deal with the whole Bible: Canaanites, Sodomites, Babylonians and Jews.

Further, when St. Paul tells you how it is, you should listen to him, not retreat to vague generalities.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 12:01 PM  

@176
Try reading what the Old Testament narrates about the events dealing with Pharaoh and his heart.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 12:13 PM  

Good grief!
Analogies and metaphors will all break down at some point. Their use deal with a specific, maybe two, ideas, using commonly understood life experiences.

The potter in Scriptures deal with God's sovereignty and authority and power. He is the the self-existent, primary cause, the Great I AM.

The metaphor proposed about the rescuer's rope, the rescuee's grabbing the rope, IMO, deals with our call to preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the rescuee's choosing to be rescued.

Could Lazarus come back to life by himself? How can a man, dead in his sins bring himself to life? And yet, God granted man free will to do just that! Yet, salvation is a gift granted by God.

Apropos Calvin And Hobbes.
http://www.gocomics.com/calvinandhobbes/2018/04/15

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 12:15 PM  

"I notice you got all fuzzy on the details of the chapter once I called you on it. Care to be more specific?"

I see no reason I need to be more specific. I stated what the chapter was about more accurately than you did. Sorry, I'm not running for your goalposts.

"But sure, God makes his grace available to all.

The above clearly contradicts the following.

He also chooses some to save, and always saves those. He also chooses some to damn, and they don't get saved."

Which you seemingly pulled out of some hidden place, seeing as it does not follow from your references. I've already provided my reference as to how God is not willing that any should perish. Where's yours?

"Further, when St. Paul tells you how it is, you should listen to him, not retreat to vague generalities."

So now you're claiming to speak for Paul the Apostle further than he chose to speak for himself. You'll forgive me for mistrusting you going forward.

"Try reading what the Old Testament narrates about the events dealing with Pharaoh and his heart."

Interestingly, it doesn't seem specify that Pharaoh died in his sins (broken pot), which is necessary to you having a point from that direction. Feel free to correct me if I'm mistaken.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 12:20 PM  

All have the chance to call on Jesus while on this Earth. In retrospect, we can "see" but until then, if we call on the name of Jesus for our rescue, Jesus will respond.

John 6

32 Then Jesus said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, Moses did not give you the bread from heaven, but My Father gives you the true bread from heaven. 33 For the bread of God is He who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

34 Then they said to Him, “Lord, give us this bread always.”

35 And Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst. 36 But I said to you that you have seen Me and yet do not believe. 37 All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will by no means cast out. 38 For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but the will of Him who sent Me. 39 This is the will of the Father who sent Me, that of all He has given Me I should lose nothing, but should raise it up at the last day. 40 And this is the will of Him who sent Me, that everyone who sees the Son and believes in Him may have everlasting life; and I will raise him up at the last day.”

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 12:24 PM  

They're going to angle onto "All that the Father gives Me", Jaime.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 12:27 PM  

@192
Correct me if I am wrong but the context of issue I addressed was not whether Pharaoh died in his sins but God's sovereignty in dealing with Pharaoh's rebellion.

The narrative indicates he probably did, depending whether Pharaoh was physically present in the pursuing or it was just a reference to Pharaoh's authority. I am inclined that Pharaoh was with his army when the Red Sea drowned them.

Blogger JaimeInTexas April 16, 2018 12:28 PM  

@194
Sure. And how would we, mare mortals know unless it is revealed?

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 12:40 PM  

We've conjoined a couple of different topics, Jaime.

Farinata exposited a calvinist interpretation saying that God predestines who will be saved and who will not from the beginning of the world. It is necessary for Farinata to believe that free will does not exist in order to hold that position within the now-existing context. I was in the process of discussing/debating that.

As far as I can tell, Pharaoh survived the events in the Bible that involved him, and the secular historians would appear to agree, naming him Amenhotep II. It's not even really certain that all or most of his armies drowned either (although some almost certainly did).

I was placing Pharaoh as he is found in the context of Romans chapter nine, which in my eyes says that God used Pharaoh like a tool, and such was fitting. Farinata was apparently referencing that rather than directly referencing the hardening of Pharaoh's heart.

Obviously God has sovereignty in dealing with Pharaoh, but the records we have don't tell us much about how that Pharaoh died, so it's neither here or there with regard to whether or not God predestined some to be saved and others to be damned.

Blogger Azure Amaranthine April 16, 2018 12:47 PM  

"Sure. And how would we, mare mortals know unless it is revealed?"

Their logic's even weaker than that. They'd also assert that because the Father gives some, he does not give others, and that those whom the Father does not give cannot choose to go, nor can be taken.

I agree that there's no way for us to know which way people will go. However, the Bible emphasizes repeatedly that people are capable of making choices, and the calvinist interpretation (from within the stated context that anyone can be saved by Grace through faith) strictly negates any such possibility.

"mare mortals"

Brony detected. JK.

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