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Featured Question for Most Christians: God being Spaceless, and Immaterial

Discussion in 'Religions Q&A' started by Skys, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. Skys

    Skys New Member

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    I understand that it is a general Christian Belief that God is a person without a Body, And if God is without a Body, he is Spaceless, not dwelling in the Universe.

    My question is does this belief have any scriptural doctrine behind it? And why would a belief of God having a Body and dwelling in this Universe be false?

    From reading the Bible there seem to be multiple verses suggesting that God does have a corporeal nature.
    Genesis 1:26-27 God made man in his image
    Exodus 33:11 Moses spoke with God face to face
    Genesis 32:30 Jacob saw God face to face

    I'd love to read your response.
     
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  2. lostwanderingsoul

    lostwanderingsoul Well-Known Member

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    John 4:18 No man has seen God at any time.
     
  3. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    I suspect that, from a theological point of view, to say the Christian God has a "corporeal" body is to say God is at least in part physical and thus in some manner and measure subject to the imperfections and limitations of physical things. e.g. The Second Law of Thermodynamics -- would not God's physical nature be subject to entropy? To argue that God is physical but not subject to physical constraints would risk playing semantics with the term "physical" and thus incur rightful disdain for one's views.

    Whether or not saying God has a physical nature can be stomached is, of course, a matter of personal taste.

    Please note that saying God has a physical nature is very different from saying God, in the form of Jesus, "took on" a physical or corporeal body. Presumably, God can take on a corporeal body without that body thereby becoming essential to God's being.

    At least that would be my take on it -- speaking offhand and without having given it too much thought. Your own mileage may vary.
     
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  4. Ellen Brown

    Ellen Brown Well-Known Member
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    In your own LDS belief system, God is "flesh and bone".

    Myself, I say that since he is God, he can be anything he want to be. Who are we to dictate anything to God? I was LDS, but these days my own beliefs are pared down to minimalist standards because I see that there is little that we can actually prove about God or religion. My soul tells me that God exists but not much more. People have violated basic standards of decency so much that I just no longer trust them.
     
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  5. Aurelius

    Aurelius Contemplating Living

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    All forms that we know from observation of the material world are subject to change and breaking down.

    It would almost become necessary for theists to say God isn't material, so seemingly not subject to this.

    The Greeks beginning to really believe their gods were material was the beginning of western atheism. For that very reason.

    We also see in Buddhism where the Devas are seen as merely another kind of creature. Buddhism follows that logic to it's given conclusion. The Devas would therefore be subject to aging and death.

    If eternity is material it presumably implies eternal decay and breaking down.

    We see nothing from our own material experience and what is common to all forms to presume the rules would be different for physical gods.
     
    #5 Aurelius, Sep 1, 2019
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2019
  6. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    Most Christians don't derive every little thing directly from the canon, however about most things there are hints in the canon. 'Theos' as the essence of divinity is both a Greek concept and a Greek word. Its mention by the gospels, Paul, Peter, James, Jude and others indicates an invisible, intangible; and because they are Jewish texts we can assume Jewish monotheism is from a Christian point of view involving an invisible, intangible God.
     
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  7. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    John 4:23-24... especially vs 24.
     
  8. Skys

    Skys New Member

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    I know the scripture you're talking about. How would you say this scripture compares to Genesis 32:30? where Jacob says he saw God. Is it conflicting? or does the scripture mean something different to what I think?
     
  9. leov

    leov Well-Known Member

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    we are spiritual beings, spiritual world us our true home, we fell into physical body. God is spirit, so we are n God's image spiritual beings. Abraham , Jacob, Moses...were speaking with God on God's ground , in spirit.
     
  10. Skys

    Skys New Member

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    Thank you for your insight! you said God took on a physical body in the form of Jesus.
    He was eventually killed then resurrected, he still had a physical body (KJV Luke 24:39 Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have).

    I want to ask do you believe Jesus still lives with a resurrected body or not? Or is that beyond the revelation that is given to us?
     
  11. Sunstone

    Sunstone De Diablo Del Fora
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    I have no idea. That's above my level of understanding.
     
  12. Skys

    Skys New Member

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    I understand that feeling of people getting in the way of personal worship. How do you keep your faith alive without people hindering you?
     
  13. Ellen Brown

    Ellen Brown Well-Known Member
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    First, I resigned the LDS Church. I do and have always done my own study. I love Micah 6:8. Certain folk will try to convince you that you have to have authority and keys and the like and I don't believe that. What about the individual Priesthood of the Believer? 1 Peter 2:9.
    Don't let people convince you that the Prophet can overrule the Bible. That is silly.
    Now if you are a male, and happy in the church, stop talking to me because I will just make you miserable and you'll get in trouble with your Bishop. The Members are a nice bunch, but a bit naive. The GA are devils.
     
  14. Terry Sampson

    Terry Sampson Well-Known Member

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    • Psalm 139
      • 7 Where can I go from Your Spirit?
        Or where can I flee from Your presence?
        8 If I ascend into heaven, You are there;
        If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there.
        9 If I take the wings of the morning,
        And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea,
        10 Even there Your hand shall lead me,
        And Your right hand shall hold me.
        11 If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,”
        Even the night shall be light about me;
        12 Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You,
        But the night shines as the day;
        The darkness and the light are both alike to You.
    • Acts 17 (Paul to the Athenians on the hill of Areopagus)
      • 24 “The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by human hands. 25 And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything. Rather, he himself gives everyone life and breath and everything else. 26 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. 27 God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. 28 ‘For in him we live and move and have our being. As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ "
    • For the record, I believe in every sentence of the Apostle's Creed; although I would not be surprised to find that many Christians consider me to be a heretic. My "formal" background was (1) Baptist, (2) then Lutheran, and (3) Roman Catholic.
    • And I am an Antirelativist.who believes that Space is infinite, Time is without beginning or end, and that that the fundamental substance of the Comos consists of mass-points. Consequently, because my version of the Cosmos consists of the fundamental substance eternally moving through Space, the Cosmos--as a whole--has no beginning and no end, although any combination of mass-points may, probably do, have beginning and an end.
    • I am unable to imagine God the Father consisting of something that has no fundamental substance and that is outside of Space or Time.
    • If I ascend to heaven, He is there. If I make my bed in hell, He is there. In Him, we live, move, and have our being.
    • The Son moved and moves still.
    • The Holy Spirit moved and moves still.
    • To move is to change locations in Space during some interval of Time. I comprehend no other kind of motion, unless one is speaking allegorically.
     
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  15. Skys

    Skys New Member

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    You mentioned that some scriptures hint at an immaterial or intangible God, what are some of those scriptures?

    And do all these beliefs of an immaterial God just come from from the canon, or do you think some of it is apocryphal?
     
  16. Skys

    Skys New Member

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  17. adrian009

    adrian009 Veteran Member
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    From a Christian perspective its necessary to understand the nature and reality of God in relation to Christ. Important scripture includes:

    1 John 4:12
    "No man hath seen God at any time. If we love one another, God dwelleth in us, and his love is perfected in us."

    Mark 13:32
    But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.

    1 KIng 8:27
    But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded?

    Malachi 3:6
    For I am the Lord, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed.

    Scripture seems to imply Jesus can not possibly be God incarnate.

    Perhaps it would be better to think of Jesus as being a perfect image or reflection of Gods' divine attributes?

    Colossians 1:15 in regards to Jesus
    "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature"

    John 5:19
    Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.

    John 8:28
    In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them.

    So in this manner Moses also speaks as God

    Deuteronomy 29:2-6

    So Moses is to the Jews what Jesus has become to the Christians. Although the language is different Moses was the salvation for the Hebrew people, both physically and spiritually.

    Hope that helps.
     
  18. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

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    Individual forms break down, but the material gets reused in new forms. Therefor, existence transcends the limitations of individual material formations. And so could God, even if God were to adopt a material form.
     
  19. Aurelius

    Aurelius Contemplating Living

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    While that is true. It would mean God totally changes. Besides the material matter reappearing doesn't seem ego infused.
     
  20. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
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    By the way don't let my officious sounding post make me seem like a scholar or some authority. I'm not making traditional arguments or even the best arguments, just brainstorming.

    Any NT scripture that uses 'Theos'. Also there is 'Logos' and 'Father' or 'Heavenly Father'. The easiest is theos, and the most difficult is father.

    Logos is one of twin terms Heraclitus coins: Aether is substance without form, and Logos is that which organizes the Aether into something; and for Heraclitus these are the two things which make the world. The existence of aether is assumed just like in Genesis the earth is there just without form and void. Logos is often translated as 'Word' in the gospel of John to show how the passage is similar to the English opening of Genesis, but anything which copies Genesis is also commenting on the language in Genesis. By using 'logos', John interprets the words spoken in Genesis to be form given to chaos. This, then, well suits a pre-existent God with no body, for God is not limited to the forming power nor the pre existing chaos that it organizes. John has God as not limited to the aether or the logos, and John has God not limited to the light and dark in Genesis.

    Father is the more difficult to explain (and I do it roughly), but the lack of 'Mother' makes it easier. There's no heavenly mother and for what reason? Its because 'Father' does not imply masculinity at all but merely inheritance. Similarly all are referred to as brothers in the NT, women included. Paul says there is neither male nor female in Christ, which adds to this. Therefore if the Heavenly Father is not male and the brethren are neither male nor female, then their fellowship is not male or female in nature. It is considered nonsexual. They inherit from the Father nonhuman characteristics. This suits a non physical God, not a God with a specific form; because they are not inheriting any physical form from the heavenly father but spiritual qualities instead.
     
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