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Featured Did Paul champion the Cause of Christ or corrupt it?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by adrian009, Oct 3, 2018.

?
  1. Yes, he championed it

    37.1%
  2. No, he corrupted it

    28.6%
  3. He changed Christ's message somewhat

    14.3%
  4. He made minor changes

    2.9%
  5. This poll does not reflect my thinking

    11.4%
  6. I don't know

    5.7%
  1. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    It appears that Paul takes Jesus very seriously but goes beyond what Jesus appears to have said. First of all, there's confusion over the Law as it shows up in Acts, and Paul gives his take on what should and should not be done, especially with those converting into the Church.

    Also, Paul appears to at the least get very close to deifying Jesus, and yet the gospels have Jesus downplaying himself with "I've come to serve, not be served".

    Paul's concept of Jesus being "the final sacrifice" is not likely anything Jesus said about himself. Plus it makes no sense if taken literally but can make sense if taken figuratively.

    Etc.

    This does not take anything away from Paul, imo, because what he's doing is to take Jesus' teachings and trying to apply it to the early Church, which definitely needed a sense of direction as conditions were rapidly changing with the growth and expansion of the Church into the diasporah and the inclusion of so many of the "God-Fearers" (gentiles) into their ranks. By the end of the century, they appear to have formed the majority of those in it.
     
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  2. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Didnt seem to care much about telling the truth, either.
     
  3. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    So you are another who is unconcerned about
    him being a liar.
     
  4. Kelly of the Phoenix

    Kelly of the Phoenix Well-Known Member

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    The Beatitudes are a good start. Think not of what everyone can do for you, but what you can do for everyone else. :p

    I think the teachings regarding the eye and the hand show us to think ecologically, that we are parts to a whole. Tribalism and conformity will doom us.
     
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  5. CG Didymus

    CG Didymus Well-Known Member

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    It's if he "championed" the cause of Christ also. Without Paul would there be "saved by grace". He championed that it isn't people doing good things to earn a place in some paradise in the sky. He argued that people can never do enough to earn salvation... that Jesus accomplished everything by his sacrifice. Christ, alone, paid the price. All people have to do is accept that free gift. Then, they are supposed to obey Christ's commands.

    In the beginning, wasn't Paul's letters pretty much the only things Christians had that was written down? So use Paul's ideas and to go to non-Jews and tell them they don't have get circumcised, that they don't have to abide by any dietary laws, they don't have to observe the Sabbath laws and all the rest, makes it easy to get converts to this new religion.

    But, what were Christians telling people about this new religion? The main thing was that Jesus had risen from the dead and conquered Satan. That, without Jesus, Jews or Gentiles were going to hell to pay the price for their sins. But, no matter what a person did, they could now accept that Jesus already paid the penalty for them. All they had to do is believe... and, somewhere in the fine print, they obey his rules, just not the Jewish rules.

    I think there is something else happening here too. There is what people think Jesus taught. That would be all the "nice" things like do unto others and turn the other cheek. There is what Paul argued for, that it is not the Law that saves people, it is faith in God and faith in Jesus. But, also, the message of the "gospel". Which was what? What is this "good news" That good news the NT is talking about is that Jesus lives. He has risen from the grave. His life's purpose was not to say nice things and hope people will do them. His purpose was to die as an atoning sacrifice for all the people of the world. Did Paul champion that message or corrupt it?

    But why did Jesus have to sacrifice himself? That's most of Paul's message. If people think they can be like Jesus, and follow his teachings on peace and love, Paul says you can't. You can never be good enough. The NT and Paul teaches that there is a devil. That people are under a curse. That they can't earn salvation. And that God sent his only Son to die, so that people could gain salvation through him.

    But, this is where the Baha'i teachings come in. Because, none of that, means anything if there is no devil... if there is no hell, and if Adam and Eve didn't cause God to curse humans. So all the things that Paul teaches about salvation aren't based on anything real. Christ didn't have to save people from hell and conquer Satan. There is no hell or Satan. Christ's message and Paul's are meaningless.

    The Baha'is message says the opposite. People can earn a higher place in the next spiritual world by doing good. They don't have to worry about a hell nor a devil. Did Jesus conquer death? Not to the Baha'is, he's dead. Baha'is say he lives on in spirit, but not in any physical body. But, who doesn't do that? Everybody lives on according to the Baha'is. So what is real or special about Christ's message or Paul's? Did Paul lie? Sure he did. Everybody in the New Testament is a liar, 'cause they teach Jesus rose from the dead. All of Christianity is a lie... if the Baha'i Faith is true. That's why, I'm saying, for a more realistic Baha'is view, I have to agree with Trailblazer. She don't sugarcoat it.
     
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  6. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    No they don’t. One explanation given is a case of mistaken identity. The island may have been another.

    Many biblical scholars fearlessly examine such contradictions and inconsistencies. For example the once universally accepted notion that Luke was a companion of Paul has been questioned for good reasons.

    The Catholics are on board with this type of scholarship, many of the Christian fundies are not.

    There is nothing phoney about the book of Acts. It has existed in some form since the first century AD. Better questions are “Who wrote it” and “why”. Paul certainly didn’t write it but no one who really knows the Bible would claim he did.
     
  7. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    I agree with all that.

    Doctors and nurses love to play games with each other so we should too :) Jesus emphasised the most important commandment was about love (Luke 22:37-40). Paul mirrors that teaching when he too talks of love (1 Corinthians 13:13). So all you need to do is provide one teaching of Paul that contradicts Christ. How hard can that be?:D
     
  8. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Your ability to deny the stone obvious says nothing
    good about what goes into "faith", sorry.

    There is nothing resembling "scholarship" in that
    bit of rationalizing you linked. In actual scholarship
    or a research sort, one does not start with the conclusion!*
    One looks for and discusses the possible errors and omissions.
    There is even "due diligence" to consider.

    They did nothing whatever of the sort.

    Note btw, that I said that the non-existence of "vipers" there
    is only one of the phony details. You've shown no
    interest, fearless or otherwise, in what those might be.
    Nor did your "scholars". Analysis? Ha.

    *as you did, too.
    nothing phoney about the book of Acts
     
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  9. Marcion

    Marcion Tantra-Yoga Universalist

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    So if you simplify what happened, it went as follows:

    * The historical Yeshua appears as a mystic Teacher. His small group of itinerant followers learn from Him how to become spiritually enlightened through mystic practices. One important (but by no means the only) part of these mystic teachings is that the disciple moves towards the Father through intense devotion for the Master Yeshua. His followers collect these teachings in the Q-lite sayings of Yeshua.

    * The mission is suddenly and dramatically over, not long after it had started. But the great momentum of this tantric-mystic Master motivates movements to continue their following of Yeshua.
    But because they have no proper guidance they mix His teachings with some of their old Jewish ways.

    * Simon ("Magus") of Samaria is an advanced practisioner of the cult that Yeshua taught and becomes famous for his demonstrations of his occult powers. He now sees himself as another Christ.
    Simon objects to the movements that have mixed the teachings of Yeshua with Jewish teachings and his own teachings are reflected in a series of pseudo-graphic letters "by Simon" composed by his pupils.

    * The Church of Rome opposes the sect of Simon Magus as well as the Jewish followers of Yeshua (Ebionites or Nazarenes) but eventually adopts the teachings of Simon as the teachings of just a special apostle to be able to absorb the Marcion Church into its fold. The Church of Rome adds their own pseudo-graphic letters, makes many interpolations in the existing ones, heavily edits the Gospel of Luke (also taken from the Marcion Bible) and writes the mythical pseudo-history of the Church 'Acts' in which it changes the personality of Simon/Paul as subservient to the apostle Peter, hero of the Church of Rome instead of Peter's fierce opponent.
     
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  10. oldbadger

    oldbadger Skanky Old Mongrel!

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    For sure.
    Yeshua's mission and Paul's bore no resemblance to each other.
     
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  11. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    When a scientist examines an hypothesis he looks at all the evidence to establish whether it’s true or false. His null hypothesis may be to establish the falsehood of a statement or its truth. So we can investigate with the perspective of how this could be true or how could this be false. It doesn’t really matter where we start as long as we consider all the relevant evidence. It is ultimately truth we are concerned with. Obviously bias and prejudice can be factors in distorting how we look at the facts.

    So what have you concluded from the obvious non-existence of venomous snakes in Malta and it’s apparent reference in Acts of the apostles 28:1-6? I provided two links for you with two opposing perspectives. One from a journalist (sceptical) the other from the Catholic Church. It’s an opportunity to discuss the facts and what they mean. Nothing more, nothing less.

    I think the reference to Malta is probably an error and another island was intended. It could also have been a snippet from an allegorical story told by Paul that’s included. Perhaps it’s a story that Paul lied about. Maybe someone added it to the text to make Paul appear protected from a nonexistent God. The are several plausible explanations as far as I can see. It sounds as if it’s a done deal for you and there’s only one.

    I’ve no problem with what else you want to bring to the thread as evidence. That’s what I’m encouraging others to do and why this thread is in the religious debates section.
     
  12. metis

    metis aged ecumenical anthropologist

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    One has to be careful when reading Paul because he tends to use dualisms a lot (black/white, light/dark/ etc.), which is likely a reflection of his Hellenistic education. He is not really a champion of faith w/o works because at other times he says things like faith w/o works is like cymbals clashing, and that of faith, hope, and love, the greatest of these is love ("agape"-- an active noun-- one doesn't just have love-- one also does love). Frankly, I don't think Luther and Calvin understood that, thus their "salvation by faith alone" theologies.

    Just my take.
     
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  13. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Seriously? You are telling me how scientific research
    is done? You are not even getting it right.

    You got a point of two tho. Like (trying to) look at ALL
    the evidence. All you or your boys have done is to
    look at what kind of snake lives where. You think
    that is ALL there is to examine? Far from it.

    It doesn’t really matter where we start
    is an extraordinary statement.

    Lets try again. In research, we do not start with
    a conclusion.

    discuss the facts and what they mean. Nothing more, nothing less.

    Nothing less? FAR less. They discussed a couple of
    the details. Left out more than was said. Facile.
    Shallow. Worthless. Shoddy "research" as I said before.
    Why cannot you see that?

    You say it may be apocryphal, though you give no reason
    for that. I'd be interested to know.

    It sounds as if it’s a done deal for you and there’s only one.

    Sometimes, turnabout is fair play. In this case, you
    are trying to tar me with the apologist brush.
    Far from fair, far from true.

    Most of your plausible explanations are fine. I'd thought
    of those long since. None are really to the point of
    what I've said though.

    Which is, that the story is internally contradictory,
    it is NOT a plausible story.

    It is clear by now that you have no interest in why
    the story has no legs, so I guess I wont try to tell you.


    You SURE about this statement? Even if some is
    apocryphal?

    nothing phoney about the book of Acts
     
    #53 Audie, Oct 4, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 4, 2018
  14. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    It is interesting how loathe many are to acknowledge
    a charlatan.

    A friend who works at a bank tells me that they get
    a LOT of people who are victims of scams.

    Sometimes, they've already lost a lot of money,
    and they try to s top them losing more.

    DId you actually enter the Dutch Lottery?

    Uh no

    How could you win if you dont enter?

    Nothing phoney (sic) about the Dutch Lottery!
    They said I won.
    I dont want to lose the money I already sent.


    And so on. Very tough to convince them that
    there is no jackpot waiting for them.

    None of the psychology of scam-victim should
    properly be confused with religious insight.
     
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  15. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    We start with a plausible hypothesis and seek to prove or disprove it looking impartially at all the evidence.

    The Catholic website simply presents some possible explanations in layman’s term. It not scholarship but it’s conclusions are based on biblical scholarship.

    I’ve never mentioned anything about apocryphal books. That’s another story.

    Whose judging who now? Go ahead and explain it but if you don’t think I’ll listen don’t.

    Yes
     
  16. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    As you have shown no interest, a plausible hypothesis
    is that you've no interest.

    Who judge who? You try turnaround, and put it on me,
    yet again? I judge that to be crap.

    You did of course, change your story some on the
    nature of the "research" in the provided link, but thats
    fine; it shows you moving away from your original
    position.

    AND, finally,

    looking impartially at all the evidence.

    That cannot be done starting with a conclusion,
    as they so clearly did.

    As for all the evidence?
    No mention at all of things like how a viper
    does not bite in the way described.

    I will leave you to it.

    I do like the story, though, as it shows what
    nonsense people are eager to believe, and
    how little they are concerned with a q like
    "am I being conned?"
     
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  17. Kelly of the Phoenix

    Kelly of the Phoenix Well-Known Member

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    If there were no prisons, laws saying to do or not do things would be meaningless? Laws are only so the prison industry can reap a prof ... wait ...
     
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  18. CG Didymus

    CG Didymus Well-Known Member

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    You're forgetting God can do anything. In the Garden, he had a walking, talking snake that was demon possessed. So to get a poisonous snake on the island wouldn't be difficult. He could have easily created one on the spot. Maybe he didn't even create a whole snake. Maybe he just put poisonous fangs in a friendly snake just temporally. Or, he could have had the snake stowaway on the boat and was brought to the island. There's so many logical solutions. Right.

    Actually I'm astonished that a Baha'i, who believes that science and religion must go hand and hand, wouldn't just play the "symbolic" card and say that the snake was symbolic for the poison of unbelief of the other people that were with Paul. They dug into his flesh with their fangs, but Paul shook them off like nothing and cast their unbelief into the fire of truth where it was consumed.
     
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  19. adrian009

    adrian009 Well-Known Member
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    This thread has brought out another part of you I have not seen.

    It would be fair to say that Paul was very direct and didn't mince his words. He emphasised the necessity of following Christ as did Christ Himself (John 14:6). It didn't matter whether you were a Jew or relied on the wisdom of the Greeks.

    He didn't teach a doctrine of salvation by faith alone. Paul emphasised a high standard of conduct both through his words and deeds. This is consistent with what Christ taught (Matthew 25:31-46).

    Paul used the symbolism of Christ on the cross to emphasise the sacrifice we all must make. He drew on the stories of the Hebrew Bible such as Adam and Eve to assist his audience understand the purpose and role Christ played in God's plan and for our lives.

    Paul's letters came well before the gospels. However most would have been illiterate and relied on what they heard from those preaching the gospel. This would have resulted in a wide variety of understandings including Gnosticism that fundamentally misunderstood the nature of Christ.

    Paul and the apostles make explicit what Jesus implied, that many of the Mosaic laws were no longer applicable and a New Covenant had been established.

    The language certainly assisted his audience understand some of the fundamentals of Christianity. The problem with Christianity is now literalism where what Paul taught two thousand years ago has been simplified and reduced to the extent the message is lost.

    Paul emphasised love as Jesus did. Jesus hinted at His resurrection and this is what Paul taught (Matthew 12:38-42)(1 Corinthians 15:4-9).

    If you listen to the fundamentalists long enough then you start to believe there's only one way to look at the New Testament and Paul's epistles. That is simply not true.

    If literalism is all that remains of our understanding of the Gospels and the Teachings of the Apostles, then the Christian Message truly is dead and its time for a new revelation from God. If we're unable to rise above a narrative that's past its used by date, then better to have no faith at all than one that causes such acrimony, division and confusion.

    Misunderstanding the Christian Message is one thing. Misunderstanding Baha'i Teachings another.
     
  20. Audie

    Audie Veteran Member

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    Ororor a holographic snake!
    There is just so much logic going around,
    I am getting dizzy!
     
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