1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Who Claims Authority?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by cardero, May 24, 2006.

  1. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669
    Who Claims Authority?




    There has been much discussion lately about authority and who has the right and recognition to speak about or for GOD. Many think it is a right bestowed upon early followers of their church but in the light of current religions and different belief systems it seems that this authority is being shared and is not designated to one group or one individual. This shared authority usually promotes an unfounded mistrust or insincerity towards the people who promote these messages but also confuses not only the messenger (GOD) but the prophets He entrusts his message to.

    What are the requirements or qualifications needed to have the authority to speak about or for GOD?
    How are we supposed to identify when a religion or an individual has the authority to speak about or for GOD?

    This is a thread that will expectantly reveal not only who has this authority to speak about/for GOD but whether or not this authority is even required or if it is misplaced.
     
  2. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    8,762
    Ratings:
    +604

    Speak ABOUT God? I'm not sure there are qualifications. But remember that one parable. "But Lord, didn't we preach in your name, and cast out devils in your name, and heal in your name?" "Truly I say to you, I did not know you." (Or something like that.) People can talk ABOUT god all they want, but they have to have qualifications to talk FOR god.
     
  3. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669
    Thank you for clearing that up Aqualung, the opening post has been edited to reflect both options. Proceed with your reasonings.
     
  4. Feathers in Hair

    Feathers in Hair World's Tallest Hobbit

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2004
    Messages:
    14,605
    Ratings:
    +1,796
    I was going to offer my thoughts, but then I realized I wasn't sure if you were asking about all religions, Mr. C, or just the ones that you mentioned.
     
  5. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669
    I really didn't mention any religions but I did quote the ones who did express knowledge of such authority. I was wondering how many religions actually professed to this. I know of three and each of these religions have some different beliefs but yet all claim authority. I welcomed the individual aspect into the mix because I know of some people who believe that they can speak about and/or for God but may not know that authority was required or how to acquire it.
     
  6. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2006
    Messages:
    31,938
    Ratings:
    +3,793
    Religion:
    Christian/Shamanic
    As you hinted, there is no clear ecumenical thought with regard to authority to speak for God. And each part of the Church has its own thought with regard to ecclesiastical authority. Hence, my statement about the "red phone to God." I don't think anyone should presume sole authority. Maybe we all need to learn to share authority and to recognize the veracity of all the other parts of the Body of Christ, whether we agree with them, or not.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  7. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    8,762
    Ratings:
    +604
    To speak FOR god, you must be called of god, like that parable I mentioned at the beginning. There is also a great illustration of this is 1 Kings 22, which I wrote a paper about in my OT class. Matt 10:1 also is a good one, because Christ had to GIVE authority to his apostles before they went out and preached. mark 13:34 is similar. Luke 22:29 says that even Christ needed authority from his father to do his duty. John 8:28 is similar. John 15:16 again says that the apostles needed authority to do what they do. Eph. 4:11 says that one's position in the church must be determined by Christ.

    People cannot take authority. It must be given unto them by Christ or the Father. Considering that before his death Christ set up a church founded on the Rock, not all churches have this authority. There is one church that is Christ's, and a bunch of other churches that aren't Christ's. Only the Church that is Christ's has this authority.
     
  8. lunamoth

    lunamoth Will to love

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    9,871
    Ratings:
    +1,630
    Religion:
    Episcopalian
    In the Abrahamic religions, at least, there are lots of exclusive claims of authority. What it comes down to is whose authority do you accept for yourself as closest to the truth? What tests do we use? Personal comfort or agreement with the tenets of belief? Fear of being wrong? Taking the word of someone else you personally admire or trust? How compelling the scriptures are? Prophecy fulfillment? Because you we born into that faith? Practical religious life concerns? Evidence of positive effects on the world through the work of its adherants? To rebel against something you strongly reject?

    Personally I go by the fruits, and how well aligned a religion is with the two love commandments in creed and in deed. Obviously I have a strong Christian bias, but as I've said elsewhere we do not have total control over the elements and influencing factors we experience and are born into. We are responsible for the choices we make knowing whatever it is that we know.

    2 c,
    lunamoth
     
  9. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669
    Double post, like the explanation below better.
     
  10. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669

    I disagree, I believe it is GOD who is “on call”. Even if someone were to be called on by GOD does that automatically authenticate their messages?


    The trouble with quoting from scriptural text is that the validity of the book itself comes under scrutiny. Biblical and other scriptural texts cannot be proven as fact, not everyone can rely or agree on which authors were inspired no matter how much faith a religion professes or promotes. Once another person claims contact of a revelatory nature from a Supreme BEing and documents it into a book, there is going to be a new understanding and another book to examine and analyze.



    I think authority must be earned. If anyone is qualifying as an expert in any field, these credentials have to be professionally displayed and competently experienced.


    What of the authority given to authors before the church was formed? Are these inspirations to be disregarded? What of the authors after the formation of the church? Ar these messages to be disregarded because the unfounded authority of one religion says that such inspirations cannot occur again? If a religious organization believes and encourages prayer of their congregation and believes that a Supreme BEing can answer prayers, why do they become offended and so quickly guarded when someone receives a message that goes against previous teachings?
     
  11. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    8,762
    Ratings:
    +604

    No. And if they are not called to speak for God, it doesn't mean they will necessarily be wrong, either. It just means they don't have the authority, and speaking for God without the authority is wrong.

    Well, then, what are we supposed to talk about? We could talk about the Book of Mormon, but you don't believe ANY of that.

    Untrue. Faith can go a long way.

    ... most of which will be written by uninspired people who are not called to speak on behalf of God, and therefore which are written exclusively based on man's knowledge.


    As do I. God isn't going to call somebody who hasn't earned it.

    There was always a church. It was formerly based in the Israelite community. Then, that community apostosized, and Christ came and restored the church and its authority. The authority has been on the earth numerous times.

    Depends if they were made with authority or not (ie, when and who was making the messages).

    Because of the fact that knowledge from God can be confused with other things. There is a quote in Amos that says God won't do anything new without first telling his people through a prophet. That means he has to call a prophet. That means he has to do it through it his established means (because he's not going to call a prophet in a new way without first telling a prophet to tell a person). People don't just "receive" messages that go against previous teachings. In fact, people NEVER receive messages that go AGAINST it, just ones that expound on it.
     
  12. cardero

    cardero Citizen Mod

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2004
    Messages:
    11,110
    Ratings:
    +1,669

    I cannot trust or apply faith in the fruits. Any religion worth its weight in humbleness will openly and honestly confess their imperfection. This imperfection can and will transfer over into their inspirations, the cataloging of such messages, the collection of these revelations, the translation of these doctrines and the interpretation and preservation and preaching of said documents. The emotion of GOD’s love and the reliability of how to accurately express it can only come from encountering and experiencing a Supreme BEing’s love first hand and cannot be imitated by relying on the accounts of other people who have felt or explained it.
     
  13. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2006
    Messages:
    11,135
    Ratings:
    +3,803
    Religion:
    Philosophical Taoist/Christian
    As far as I'm concerned, any man who claims to speak FOR God, is not only a liar, but a fool, besides.
     
  14. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    8,762
    Ratings:
    +604
    Care to give a reason for your claim?
     
  15. lunamoth

    lunamoth Will to love

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    9,871
    Ratings:
    +1,630
    Religion:
    Episcopalian
    I actually agree with most of what you say here. But we can trust love when we see it. Remember I said that there are many claims to authority and it is up to which one we submit ourselves to, even if we decide to submit only to our own (I did not say that there is only one that is completely right). However, I feel that the whole is greater than the sum of its parts with respect to religion, and like an impressionist painting up close there are many imperfections but when you stand back and look at the whole picture it is beautiful.

    2 c,
    luna
     
    • Like Like x 2
  16. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2006
    Messages:
    11,135
    Ratings:
    +3,803
    Religion:
    Philosophical Taoist/Christian
    I believe that if God wanted us to know something, it would become known to us directly. God would not place another (notoriously biased, confused, and self-centered) human being between his will and our understanding. Even I would know better than to do something that dumb. *smile*

    Also, it places a human being in the position of being God's 'stand-in', which is a very, very dangerous place for any human being to imagine himself to be. When we humans begin thinking that we're God's stand-ins, we very often become murderous monsters.
     
  17. Aqualung

    Aqualung Tasty

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2005
    Messages:
    8,762
    Ratings:
    +604
    Do you beleive the Bible? (just asking, since you're a taosit/christian), and if you don't, it would save me a lot of time arguing this point with somebody who doesn't believe the bible anyway.
     
  18. PureX

    PureX Veteran Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2006
    Messages:
    11,135
    Ratings:
    +3,803
    Religion:
    Philosophical Taoist/Christian
    I always find that to be such an odd question; as though we would for some reason have to presume a book or story to be either true or not true in it's entirety.

    The bible is a great collection of religious and theological thought, and it conveys much truth and wisdom from generation to generation. However, it is a book written by men, about what they thought about God and God's will for themselves. It is not a book written by God about what God wants men to think and do. Taken for what it is, I find it to be a wonderful and amazing collection of texts. I value it's truth and wisdom, and I dismiss it's ignorance, prejudice and absurd superstitions as the usual foolishness of my fellow men.

    I don't "believe" it's anything other than what it is. But what it is, is amazing enough.
     
  19. Booko

    Booko Deviled Hen

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    18,523
    Ratings:
    +1,380


    OK -- I'll start out with the very brief answers, and we can develop things from there...

    Requirement:

    To be a Messenger of God

    Or, when the Messenger is no longer available, then it falls to whatever person or organization the Messenger gave authority to

    AND/OR

    The Writings/Teachings left behind by the Messenger.


    First you identify a valid Messenger, and then see what He said about authority and go from there.


    It does rather depend on whether one believes in the phenomonon of Revelation or not. If you don't, then it's unnecessary.
     
  20. Booko

    Booko Deviled Hen

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2006
    Messages:
    18,523
    Ratings:
    +1,380
    Is there not at least some general agreement within Christianity that Peter was to be in authority after Christ?

    I know there's disagreement about the implications, and disagreement about what it means today.

    Also, don't at least the red letters in the NT constitute an authority in Christianity, no matter the denomination?
     
Loading...