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Featured What does "one" mean?

Discussion in 'Interfaith Discussion' started by Teritos, Mar 2, 2021.

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  1. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    Deuteronomy 6:4
    Hear, Israel: Yahweh, our God, is one Yahweh.
    James 2:19
    You believe that God is one, you do right; also the demons believe and tremble.

    What does it mean when the Bible says that God is one?
     
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  2. Brian2

    Brian2 Well-Known Member

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    That there is just one God, one Yahweh.
    At Deut 6:4 it does not necessarily mean that there is not more than one person in the being of God.
    Jesus said that He is in the Father and the Father is in Him.
    That word for "one" is used in the OT scriptures to mean a compound one in some places.
    The Father and Son come to make our home with us when the Holy Spirit comes to dwell in us. (John 14:23, John 14:15-17)
    John 14:23 Jesus replied, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word. My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.
    John 14:15 If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Advocate to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot receive Him, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you do know Him, for He abides with you and will be in you.…
     
  3. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    The section of St James's epistle in question is talking about the necessity for faith to be accompanied by good works. The verse in question is illustrating how useless faith alone is, by pointing out that even the devils and demons believe in "the one God". So they can be said to have faith, even though they are completely evil!

    This reference to "the one God" is certainly a recurrent theme in the bible, because the distinctive feature of Judaism and, later, Christianity is monotheism, as opposed to the polytheism of the surrounding cultures of the time. That's all.
     
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  4. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    No, that is not what James meant. Good works are worthless. Faith alone helps. Grace is a gift that is not earned but given. Just read the context.
    Do you think that is the meaning? It's too simple. I think it has a deeper meaning.
     
  5. Aupmanyav

    Aupmanyav Be your own guru

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    My religion ranges from Polytheism to Atheism. We find no reason to insist on one and leave it to a person's choice.
     
  6. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    ..and black is white, and I'm a teapot, right?;)

    I quote the New International version:

    14 What good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds? Can such faith save them? 15 Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. 16 If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead.

    18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.”

    Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you my faith by my deeds. 19 You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder.

    20 You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless? 21 Was not our father Abraham considered righteous for what he did when he offered his son Isaac on the altar? 22 You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. 23 And the scripture was fulfilled that says, “Abraham believed God, and it was credited to him as righteousness,”and he was called God’s friend. 24 You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone.

    25 In the same way, was not even Rahab the prostitute considered righteous for what she did when she gave lodging to the spies and sent them off in a different direction? 26 As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead.


    And you take that to mean that good works are worthless?

    Really?
     
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  7. cataway

    cataway Well-Known Member

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    a great number of people would like to believe it means the three ,in trinity ,are really called one . how ever that is not the case . the trinity is not some thing invented/discovered by Christendom . there were gods even back then that were worshiped in trinity . to show there is a distinction, that Jehovah is not like the false gods of the surrounding nations , he is known to be one, complete in himself .
     
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  8. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    So sacrificing your own son is a good work?
    Therefore I told you, read the context.
     
  9. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    The New English Translation has plenty of good footnotes about ways that the text can be translated. In the case of the Deuteronomy verse:
     
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  10. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    The concluding summary of this section is: "As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead."

    And you think that means good works are worthless. Apparently. :confused:
     
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  11. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    James lists the works he is referring to. Among other things, he also mentions the work of Abraham where he sacrificed his son and calls this act a work of faith. You do not understand what James means by works. He does not mean "good works" but works of faith. Any man would say that the work of Abraham was evil and bad, but this was a work of faith because God commanded him to sacrifice his sin, and Abraham showed faithfulness and really wanted to do this.
    This has nothing to do with "good works".
     
  12. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    Sounds like you're more moral than the Bible.

    This fact doesn't mean that the passage @exchemist quoted didn't assume that Abraham's actions were righteous.
     
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  13. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    Abraham's work in killing his own son justified him because he wanted to do it out of loyalty to God.
    But to call this a good work is absolutely wrong. It is a work of faith.
     
  14. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    The passage says, explicitly, that faith without deeds is dead. It gives several illustrations of the point, one to do with clothing and feeding those without and one involving a prostitute helping someone, as well as the one you mention.
     
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  15. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    By the way, wanting to kill your own son is against the law of Moses where it is written: "You shall not kill" What Abraham wanted to do even breaks the Torah.
     
  16. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    I agree that killing - or attempting to kill - one's own child is an evil act.

    But interpreting the intended meaning of that passage isn't about what you or I think; it's about what the author thought. He explicitly calls it "righteous."
     
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  17. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    Rahab the prostitute lied to her own people and sent them to their death. If this is also a good work for you, then I cannot help you any further.
     
  18. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    What? You found hypocrisy in the Bible? Colour me not surprised at all.
     
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  19. exchemist

    exchemist Veteran Member

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    This is all rather funny. By quoting St James, he has walked slap-bang into the difficulties with the sola fide doctrine that extreme Protestants get so agitated in defending. And now he is trying to say that black is white. :D

    But really it's off-topic. I should let it drop.
     
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  20. Teritos

    Teritos Active Member

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    As I said, this act justified Abraham because he remained faithful to God.
    By obeying God, he proved his faithfulness, and through that faithfulness he was justified.

    And again: It is a work of faith.
     
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