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New Testament

Discussion in 'Christianity in General DIR' started by Matt Houston, May 18, 2006.

  1. Fish and Bread

    Joined:
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    Churches that teach stuff like that need to pay more attention to context and metaphor, in my view. The 10% thing is Jewish is in reference to the Jews, in the New Testament Jesus (Or maybe it was St. Paul) tells his followers to give what is in their hearts. Now, 10% might be a good biblical guideline to start from if people aren't sure what to give -- i.e. thinking "Well, can I afford 10%? Or should I adjust that downward due to tough financial circumstances? Upward due to my wealth?". But 10% is from an obscure Old Testament passage never meant to be thought of as absolute Christian doctrine, as near as I can tell.

    The example about death is a clearcut example of metaphor. Honestly, I admire the faith of evangelical Christians, but there are a minority of them who just seem to take a bible, open it open randomly, read a single verse, take it hyperliterally without reading even the verses around it sometimes, and then tell everyone to base their lives on that. That seems a bit strange to me.
     
  2. angellous_evangellous

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    The variant in John is significant because the community of John did not accept someone as a Christian if they did not receive the footwashing - which could symbolize either Baptism or Eucharist - or both. It seems to me that the Marcan ending is very significant because someone can argue - and many do - that the stories about the ressurrected Jesus appearing to his disciples is a myth added later in the history of Christianity - like 50 to 100 years after Christ - undermining the very essence of Christianity.

    That is as significant as it gets.

    EDIT: Offhand I think that the two variants that I gave as examples are the most significant ones. I will post a pic of some early papyrus -- the earliest of John and show you where scribes just scratched stuff out and rewrote some of the text. To me, every little edit or redaction is significant if one wants exact meanings of the text - particularly if one believes in inerrancy, which I often argue against.
     
  3. Fish and Bread

    Joined:
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    What I've been trying to convey, and what I think we can agree on, is that there haven't really been New Testament texts out there that change the meaning of anything when considered as part of a coherent whole with the other books of the bible. There isn't a version of the Gospel of John out there, for example, where Jesus believes in reincarnation and tells us all we must hop on one foot to enter the kingdom of heaven.

    When one views a particular passage, book, or gospel in isolation from the other scripture and from Christian history and tradition, then I suppose these different copies can make a difference from a historocritical perspective. And I do think it's valid to consider that. But most Christians don't think in those terms, when they ask if a meaning is changed, they're generally thinking of it in the context of the entire bible, I would think, or at leaast that's true of the folks I know.
     
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