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Featured Understanding John 1:1

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by filthyrottendirty, Mar 16, 2021.

  1. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    I’m sorry but I find that laughable....is what you post from YOU? Is what the Apostles taught from THEM?

    BB, I have made my case from the scriptures and you can plainly see what they have to say. You are no longer ignorant concerning the Bible’s truth. You can reject if you wish....but you can never say to Jesus that you didn’t know the truth. (Matthew 7:21-23)

    Was Jesus anti-Semitic? Seriously.....that Jews can play that card instead of admitting the truth of their own scripture, is nothing but history repeating.....but with Messianics, Jesus is your excuse. The irony is quite extraordinary IMO.

    No point in continuing.....you have made your choice and you are entitled to it. We all have that freedom. And we will all stand before the same judge. He has no biases. He is only interested in the truth and we should be too. It will triumph in the end.
     
  2. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    I hear your great emphasis on truth and God's judgment, but as so often with my JW cousins, I cannot see agape love.

    Jesus loved the world so much, the Bible says, that He willed Himself to the cross and rose Himself up in great power for our salvation. PRAISE JESUS WITH ME, BROTHER!
     
  3. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Ah, so family members are JW's? All I can say is that you only see things from the outside, but what is on the inside is quite another matter.
    What is "a·gaʹpe"? And how does it differ from "phi·liʹa" or "stor·geʹ " or "eʹros"? We have one word in English for all of those Greek words..."love".

    What a·gaʹpe" are you failing to see? This is not "brotherly love" and it isn't "the love of blood relatives", nor is it "romantic love", but a love that transcends all hatred. It is the kind of love that moves a person to even love their enemies in the sense of not hating them nor wishing evil upon them. (Matthew 5:43-44)

    What is it that JW's do that practically no other Christian brotherhood does in every nation on earth....? We are told to take the good news of the Kingdom to the people, but its offered on a "take it or leave it" basis, as Jesus said when sending his disciples out to preach.
    Matthew 10:11-15...
    "And whatever town or village you enter, find out who is worthy in it and stay there until you depart. 12 As you enter the house, greet it. 13 And if the house is worthy, let your peace come upon it, but if it is not worthy, let your peace return to you. 14 And if anyone will not receive you or listen to your words, shake off the dust from your feet when you leave that house or town. 15 Truly, I say to you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah than for that town."

    What do you see there? Was Christ's message going to be received by all with gratitude, or were they to offer that message to everyone on the basis that the peace bestowed on that household would be returned to the preacher who brought it, if it was rejected? Shaking the dust off their feet was symbolically meaning that the customary foot washing that was accorded all visitors to Jewish houses was withheld, forcing the traveller to shake the dust off, rather than having it washed off. There was no a·gaʹpe demonstrated there.

    So where does a·gaʹpe fit in here? I believe that it is the "love" that motivates a disciple to offer the message to a hostile audience in the first place....to go out to the people to let them know what God's plans are for the future, and how they can be included in them...if they want to. Who is actually doing this work in every nation on earth and suffering rejection and persecution as a result? What did Jesus tell his disciples to expect?

    "If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. 20 Remember the word that I said to you: ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will also persecute you. If they kept my word, they will also keep yours. 21 But all these things they will do to you on account of my name, because they do not know him who sent me." (John 15:18-21)

    Jesus said that just as some (though not the majority) would listen and respond to the message, most would not. Do we stop preaching because the majority resent our visits? Or were we to keep preaching in spite of that, loving humanity enough to go out of our comfort zone and suffer rejection and even hostility, to offer them life? You tell me whether that is showing a·gaʹpe ....?

    Who has not heard of Jehovah's Witnesses and who doesn't know that we are preachers of God's Kingdom in every nation? How does Matthew 24:14 or Matthew 28:19-20 see fulfillment by any of the churches of Christendom.....including your own?

    Jesus loved humanity for sure, but as he is God's appointed judge, he will show his love for God and for obedient mankind by ridding the world of those who oppose his Father's Sovereignty and who reject his appointed King. He will dispatch those whose worship is based on falsehoods and fake gods and corrupted religious ideas. These have no place in God's Kingdom.

    There are only "sheep and goats" in the world when Jesus comes in his capacity as judge.....he knows the difference but apparently we do not. (Matthew 7:21-23)
    His words to those who acknowledge him as their "Lord" at the judgment, will ring in the ears of the "goats" who will never know what everlasting life really means, because they will never get to experience it.

    For you to say...."that He willed Himself to the cross and rose Himself up in great power for our salvation" shows that you have no idea what the scripture really says.....and you don't know who God is (John 17:3).....because he did not "will himself" to do anything, but Jesus was "sent" by his God and Father to rescue the ones he loved so much...those who loved his God with all their heart and appreciated the sacrifice he made on their behalf. It was an assignment offered, and freely accepted because of his love for his Father and for faithful ones.

    According to Acts 10:40-42, it was his God and Father who raised Jesus from the dead......he did not 'raise himself' because that means that he never really died. That in turn means that you have no idea how Jesus' ransom works...or even why he had to come into the world as a human to give his life for us. What does redemption mean to you?

    What? And adopt your unscriptural views? No Thanks!....I praise Jesus' Father in the same way that he did.
    I will never adopt a blasphemy like the trinity and break the First Commandment, insulting my Father by putting a lesser 'god' in his place. I would plead with you likewise to re-evaluate what you have been taught, because there is only one truth.
     
  4. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    Again, I see a commitment to truth, but not to loving the brethren, the hallmark of the saved, or a commitment to studying the Bible for yourself, rather than parroting/adhering to Watchtower "this is what the Bible REALLY means" doctrine...
     
  5. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    The burning question remains BB.....

    Matthew 5:36-39; 42-47....
    36 “But about that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone. 37 For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. 38 For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so will the coming of the Son of Man be. . . . .42 “Therefore be on the alert, for you do not know which day your Lord is coming. 43 But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into. 44 For this reason you must be ready as well; for the Son of Man is coming at an hour when you do not think He will. 45 “Who then is the faithful and sensible slave whom his master put in charge of his household slaves, to give them their food at the proper time? 46 Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes. 47 Truly I say to you that he will put him in charge of all his possessions.” (NASB)

    If Jesus put his “faithful and sensible slave” in charge of his entire household of fellow slaves, then we need to be “feeding” on the “food” that this one source provides. Take note that this appointment is only made at the time of Jesus return. And that he will reward that slave for doing his job well during that time.

    Who is that slave BB? Why did Jesus leave that as a tantalising question.....do you think? Only one source would be ‘feeding’ true spiritual ‘food’...not all at once, but what was needed, when it was needed....”at the proper time”.

    The “love” that Jesus spoke about was “love for one another” (John 13:35) So it wasn’t just a love for mankind in general, because humans alienated from God have no place with him. We show love to them, by offering them the message that Jesus sent his disciples out to preach. (Matthew 10:11-14) But if we see someone in need, we would provide assistance as needed without hesitation. (Like the Good Samaritan) Jesus gives us a past time example in the days of Noah......who warned the people of his day about God’s intentions for decades whilst he built the ark.....yet not a single soul listened.......and they perished. What does that indicate to you? (Matthew 7:13-14) How many are on the right road?

    This was a love that moved his disciples to take care of one another....and JW’s do this in more practical ways than any other global Christian organization that I know of.

    When disasters strike, JW’s are often first on the scene, making sure that their brothers and sisters are taken care of first. Their immediate needs are met with food and water supplies and generators if their homes are still standing, or accommodation if their spiritual family members need this. I don’t know of any other Christian organization who come close to what we do. We all contribute to a global fund that makes sure that resources are available at short notice and sent without delay to those who need them....anywhere in the world.

    How would you address those issues from your perspective BB?
     
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  6. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    You know of no other Christian organization who comes close to what you do? You mean like the ones who put tens of thousands of workers on the scene after hurricanes here or monsoons in Asia? You mean like Health Share groups that have shared BILLIONS of dollars in healthcare bills for Christians who cannot afford insurance?

    Unfortunately, I've not found the love of Jesus among a cult whose members won't even use Jesus's glorious NAME.
     
  7. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    If we go back to the first century, we can see that Christians took care of their own. If everyone did that, what would be the result?
    How many churches actually do that? How many who claim to belong to a specific religion actually know their own brethren, let alone know how to help them when a disaster strikes?

    Our spiritual family cannot be strangers that we merely share a building with once a week...or even once in a while. I came out of such a church, which was more like a gym membership than a spiritual family. There was always a great emphasis on money because the minister depended on the congregation for his income....his home, his utilities and his car. What was left to assist the needy?....not much.

    JW’s have no paid clergy. Like the apostle Paul, they do not wish to be a financial burden on their brothers, so they work at their secular jobs to support themselves, and because there is a body of elders, no one man is responsible for shepherding and assisting congregation members. (2 Thessalonians 3:7-8)

    If for some reason an elder moves to another location, the congregation is not left in the lurch. In my previous country town, two of the churches there were left without a minister when each got a better offer.....better as in a bigger paycheck.

    Where I live now, the Protestant minister was offered a position in the military as chaplain and did the same thing. Apparently they attain the rank of Captain and are paid accordingly. Is that OK with you? His congregation were not very happy with his decision.

    If we call ourselves “Christians” then we should expect to know, and be known, by the shepherds in our own congregation because Jesus said that every one of his sheep were precious. Our congregations are purposely kept relatively small and have a body of elders (shepherds) so that all in the congregation have the guidance and assistance that Jesus said they should.

    What we see now are the mainstream churches dying whilst the mega-churches are flourishing. The emphasis is on entertainment, emotional manipulation and money. Is that what it means to be “Christian”?

    I don’t know how you feel about other “Christians” but since you identify as a “Messianic Jewish Christian”....so, how do you differ from other Jews who are “Messianic” but who don’t believe what you do? How do you feel about all those thousands of sects in Christendom who differ from yourself and each other? Does the Christ exist divided? We don’t believe so.....Jesus has one flock in one pen with himself as “the fine Shepherd”......and unity and peace, was to identify them along with love for one another. (1 Corinthians 1:10; John 13:34-35)

    My experience is the opposite. I have been a JW for over 50 years and love in my brotherhood is real and is demonstrated in many real and practical ways. During Covid lockdowns, our elders regularly call to make sure we are doing OK and to offer help if necessary.

    I have no idea what you mean by using Jesus’ name.....we glorify the same God whom he did. We appreciate his role as Messiah and “son of God”....but never did he glorify himself before his God.

    Micah 4:5..
    “For all the peoples will walk, each in the name of its god; but we will walk in the name of Adonai our God forever and ever. (CJB)

    Who was “Adonai” to the Jews BB? The Tanakh reveals that YHWH was that God. He has only one name.....and it isn’t Jesus. (Psalm 83:18)
    To put another “god” in place of YHWH, breaks the first Commandment.....a blasphemy for any Jew.....so is it any wonder that Jesus promoted the worship of his God....never of himself. (Luke 4:5-8)

    If the use of Jesus’ name was associated with miracles back in the first century, was that to continue? Paul indicates that such “powerful works” are not from God at all in this time before Jesus brings in the rule of God’s kingdom. God’s Adversary was going to be hard at work with “false miracles, signs and wonders”.....would people be able to tell the difference? It is the devil’s last opportunity to lead people away from God, by pretending to lead them to him.

    2 Thessalonians 2:9-12...
    “When this man who avoids Torah comes, the Adversary will give him the power to work all kinds of false miracles, signs and wonders. He will enable him to deceive, in all kinds of wicked ways, those who are headed for destruction because they would not receive the love of the truth that could have saved them. This is why God is causing them to go astray, so that they will believe the Lie. The result will be that all who have not believed the truth, but have taken their pleasure in wickedness, will be condemned.” (CJB)

    Does God prevent people from believing his lies? No! He allows all of us to make our own choices for our own reasons.
    When Jesus comes as judge of all mankind, what excuses do those who consider themselves his disciples offer to indicate their approved status?

    Matthew 7:21-23...
    “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord!’ will enter the Kingdom of Heaven, only those who do what my Father in heaven wants. On that Day, many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord! Didn’t we prophesy in your name? Didn’t we expel demons in your name? Didn’t we perform many miracles in your name?’ Then I will tell them to their faces, ‘I never knew you! Get away from me, you workers of lawlessness!(CJB)

    Look at what is claimed to be done “in Jesus’ name”......yet is that proof that Jesus accepts these ones as his own? No! Just the opposite in fact. He says that he “NEVER” knew them.....”never means “not ever”.....let that sink in.

    If your command of scripture is sufficient, then your responses do not show it. Your condemnation of JW’s as a “cult” is rather amusing considering your own identification.....I believe that your family experience has clouded your opinion and that it appears to be more personal, than scriptural.
    That is my opinion, given what you have stated.
     
  8. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    I agree with you regarding the Bible principle that charity is for the church first, the others second. That is clear. Paul, for example, would request collections for the poor . . . saints in Jerusalem.

    I do not want to argue Watchtower doctrine with you. I'm more interested in hearing your personal Berean opinions on scripture--it will be a good habit for you to get into.

    I'm conversant with the scriptures, very much so. That's why I do not require the Watchtower to tell me what they mean. We are to show ourselves able to divide the Word!
     
  9. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Indeed...so who is following the first century model? I do not see the churches considering individual needs and providing personal assistance....do you? Sure they have charities, but is giving people physical food and clothing catering to their spiritual needs? Do you just give a man a fish? Or do you teach him to fish?
    Which is more important to Jesus?

    Once we learn how to fish, we then teach others to do the same.....we are to become “fishers of men”...correct? So how do we do that?

    The shepherds of ancient times did not let a single sheep go astray because he was not usually the owner of the flock, but the one responsible to care for them as the valuable possession of their owner. If a single lamb went missing, he would make great effort to find it and bring it back to the flock, carrying it in the fold of his garment to comfort it and keep it warm. We get the picture, don’t we?

    Since I have been a disciple and teacher for over 50 years, nothing I have presented to you is “Watchtower” doctrine...it is Bible based doctrine, taking into account all of what the Bible teaches. How many scriptures have I included in my responses compared with how many you have presented to back up what your “church” teaches.....haven’t you got your own doctrines? Haven’t you got your own minority religion? How can you point fingers at us?

    Your family connection I believe is clouding your judgment because your mind and heart are closed for personal reasons rather than scriptural ones.....in your view, your JW family members can’t be right...can they?

    We are told clearly to accept the “food” provided by the “slave” appointed by Jesus to “feed” his fellow slaves “their food at the proper time”. (Matthew 24:45) We are never told to feed ourselves because that has been the reason why there is so much disunity among churches. In all of Bible history, God has provided men to teach and direct his people....when has that not been the case since Israel was first formed into a nation?

    If you want a scriptural exchange....I am all for it. We can allow the Bible to speak for itself because it does not contradict. It is one story from start to finish. The beginning tells us what God’s first purpose was for his creation and how we lost our relationship with God through the disobedience of our first human parents.

    He tells us how he will solve that problem but in a way that will take time and involve a lot of suffering, (like painful surgery used to correct a birth defect) but in the end God will restore all that was lost. The method involved would create precedents and set patterns for all time to come, so that God’s Universal Sovereignty can never be challenged again. This is our “big picture”....

    Is this what the Bible tells you?
     
    #189 Deeje, Apr 14, 2021
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2021
  10. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    The Bible tells me that Hell is eternal--the same word is used of both believers and unbelievers--they go into an eternal age, if unbelievers are annihilated, so are the righteous.

    The Bible tells me that it is heresy to teach that a Millennial Israel is the eternal Earth fate for the righteous--for eyes and ears have not experienced what God has in store.

    The Bible tells me that Jesus is God and that it lacks the word "Agent" for Jesus or any other being, man, angel or god.

    The Bible tells me that I am to evangelize when outside RF, not stand by a table of literature and assume that unless people pursue me with inquiries, God hates them and they are to be annihilated.

    The Bible tells me that breaking of bread is a regular practice, so that if millions of us gather by satellite video, and only a few of us take the bread, and only annually, we are cultists, for our food is being controlled (as our marriages and relationships with those outside the cult are controlled--1 Tim 4:1-4).

    The Bible tells me that only a very few JW's will use a forum like RF, for the rest, once they get out from under the cult leaders and being told in countless books and magazines what the Bible "really says", will flee the cult.
     
  11. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Scripture would be appreciated if we are going to discuss what the Bible really says, rather than what we think it says, so please provide the scripture that is responsible for your beliefs, then we can discuss the scriptures, not just our beliefs.....OK?

    So what is “Hell” in your understanding from the Hebrew “sheol” or Greek, “hades”? Is “Gehenna” the same as “hades”.....and is it the same as “the lake of fire” in Revelation?

    As a Jew, what did the ancients believe about “sheol”?

    If you can answer those questions, then we will have a base to work from.

    What did God have in store for humans when he first put us here on this earth? Was Adam ever given any indication that there was a heaven or hell destiny for all mankind? What was he told about the penalty for his disobedience? Did he know what death was?
    Was everlasting life on earth, God’s original purpose for mankind or was there a natural cause of death that God mentioned to Adam? Was “heaven or hell” always part of God’s purpose for mankind?

    No opinions, just scripture.

    So where does Jesus tell you that he is God? Where does Yahweh ever tell us that Jesus is the Almighty in some kind of equal position with himself? Find me those scriptures please and let’s discuss them....

    OK, why did Jesus send his disciples out to preach? And to whom did he send them?
    What does John tell us about why people respond to the preaching that we are obligated to do? (John 6:44; 65) Who draws people to the truth?
    If they have no visible presentation of that truth, as in the first century, who can respond to a message that they are never offered? (Romans 10:14-15)

    And...what gives you the impression that we simply stand by a table waiting for people to come to us, and not that we have been actively engaged in door to door witnessing for the last 100 years? Where have you been hiding?

    Covid has put an end to face to face preaching for now, out of concern for the safety of ourselves and others, but that does not cancel out the fact that we have been fulfilling our commission on a level that is unmatched in Christendom since the early part of the 1900’s. We have found other methods to preach as we are now writing letters and contacting people by phone, to give them some hope in what appears to be a hopeless situation. There is no real solution in sight as this virus keeps mutating into strains that the current vaccines are not addressing.

    Christendom has been nowhere in sight as far as Jesus’ command to preach is concerned. When was the last time someone contacted you with “the good news of the kingdom” (Matthew 24:14)

    Is your particular group connected to all the other Messianic Jewish groups? Do you all share the same beliefs? Is your organization a united global brotherhood?

    Please share these scriptures too, I would be very happy to discuss them. 1 Timothy 4:1-4 certainly applies to some churches, but in no way do these words apply to us, and I can show you scripture that demonstrates that clearly.

    The only ones who “flee” from our ranks are those who can’t live up to the strict moral standards of the Bible, or who chafe at being told that they can’t do or believe whatever they want.....the “freedom” offered by Christ was never really “free”.....it is a willing ‘slavery’ to a very loving Master, but it means servitude. The only other master we can serve, is the devil....all of us are slaves to one or the other, whether we acknowledge it or not.

    There are only two roads (Matthew7:13-14) and all of us are on either one or the other....the majority are on the wrong one but not many know that they are...or even care. Why?

    What is your definition of a “cult” as you seem to misunderstand exactly what that means. Who is the leader of your “cult”?...or don’t you believe that you yourself belong to one?

    Just the Bible in this discussion OK? Because our personal opinions don’t really matter.
     
  12. BilliardsBall

    BilliardsBall Veteran Member

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    I don't want to goal post shift to other scriptures until you address the Greek word "aeon" or "eon" and how both believers and unbelievers live for an endless age. If unbelievers are annihilated, so are believers.

    Jesus is God, biblically: 10 Biblical Reasons Jesus Is God

    Yes, I'm aware of JW door-to-door efforts. I've hosted JWs for Bible studies in my home. My wife and children found it instructive because we were disallowed from asking any questions and never read merely the Bible, but always Watchtower commentary as fact sandwiched by verses and passages.

    JW's are a cult IMHO based on, for example 1 Tim 4:1-4, where a demonic cult controls followers, including marital relationships and foods/beverages allowed. Food and sex are powerful control units.
     
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