Transcription of Scripture

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Comments

  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    You are fully and solely responsible for what you write, in my book.

    Interestingly, make the ‘you’ here God and assume what he has written not only makes him responsible, it creates a burden on the reader or hearer. What you understand, you carry responsibility for.

    Incidentally, the movie ‘Denial’, places the theme of truth on trial in an English court. It is not what one believes about the facts rather what the facts are. The judge decided essentially that a sincere belief is irrelevant to whether a person is responsible for misrepresentation. A sincere belief can be either mistaken or the alleged mistake can be seen as tendentious and justifying a prejudged conclusion. The latter, is what the court decided.

    If one assumes that God cannot possibly have written anything that seemingly justifies slavery simply because God wouldn’t do that, then you put a wall between his words and your grasp of them.
  • MPaul wrote: »
    If one assumes that God cannot possibly have written anything that seemingly justifies slavery simply because God wouldn’t do that, then you put a wall between his words and your grasp of them.
    But then, that involves an underlying assumption that God “wrote” the Scriptures. That sounds more like a Muslim idea than a Christian one.

  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    If one assumes that God cannot possibly have written anything that seemingly justifies slavery simply because God wouldn’t do that, then you put a wall between his words and your grasp of them.
    But then, that involves an underlying assumption that God “wrote” the Scriptures. That sounds more like a Muslim idea than a Christian one.
    Quite right. Indeed, that is my assumption. As to whether it is more Islamic than Christian, that is yours.

  • MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    If one assumes that God cannot possibly have written anything that seemingly justifies slavery simply because God wouldn’t do that, then you put a wall between his words and your grasp of them.
    But then, that involves an underlying assumption that God “wrote” the Scriptures. That sounds more like a Muslim idea than a Christian one.
    Quite right. Indeed, that is my assumption.
    Fair enough. But my point was that your criticism about putting up a wall depends on the assumption. One has to first be convinced that the assumption is valid before one can accept the criticism as valid.
    As to whether it is more Islamic than Christian, that is yours.
    Not really, because I was more reacting than assuming anything.

    Granted, I was relying on an understanding that the general Islamic belief is that the Quran was directly revealed to the prophet, who wrote down exactly what was directly revealed to him. I have rarely encountered a similar understanding in Christian views of Scripture, and I think one would be hard-pressed to demonstrate that the idea is as widely prevalent in Christianity as it is in Islam.

    But yes, admittedly I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited December 2018
    MPaul wrote: »
    Martin54 wrote: »
    You are fully and solely responsible for what you write, in my book.

    Interestingly, make the ‘you’ here God and assume what he has written not only makes him responsible, it creates a burden on the reader or hearer. What you understand, you carry responsibility for.

    Incidentally, the movie ‘Denial’, places the theme of truth on trial in an English court. It is not what one believes about the facts rather what the facts are. The judge decided essentially that a sincere belief is irrelevant to whether a person is responsible for misrepresentation. A sincere belief can be either mistaken or the alleged mistake can be seen as tendentious and justifying a prejudged conclusion. The latter, is what the court decided.

    If one assumes that God cannot possibly have written anything that seemingly justifies slavery simply because God wouldn’t do that, then you put a wall between his words and your grasp of them.

    What words? He no more uses words than He incarnates.
  • LeRocLeRoc Shipmate
    edited December 2018
    I'm with Nick Tamen. The idea of God directly dictating the Holy Book is a Muslim one.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    edited December 2018
    It's also a primitive Jewish and Christian one. Still.
  • I believe the Orthodox Jewish view is that although the Torah came from God, it is up to humanity to decide how to interpret and implement it, on the grounds that in Deuteronomy it is said that the Law is Not in Heaven.

    The Talmud illustrates this with the story of the Oven of Achnai - in the midst of a rabbinical dispute, a voice from Heaven declares that Rabbi Eliezar is right, but Rabbi Joshua replies that a voice from Heaven is inadmissible evidence, because the Torah is not in Heaven.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is. For me, he wrote it using human conduits with or without their awareness.
  • MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is. For me, he wrote it using human conduits with or without their awareness.

    This is often set forth as an "answer" to the authority of scripture, but it doesn't really address the problem. The reality is that one either recognizes that humans played a part in the creation of scripture -- in which case one needs to deal with the uncertainty of what is human and what is divine; or one insists that it is all divine -- in which case one needs to deal with the evil and idiocy that sometimes has to be attributed to the Almighty. Neither option is entirely comfortable AFAICS.
  • Nick TamenNick Tamen Shipmate
    edited December 2018
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is.
    Not really, no—no more of a problem than you have making the various pieces that conflict with each other fit together, including the inconsistencies about the nature of God. I am simply using a different framework than you, and it simply wrong to suggest that any framework other than yours has a problem with the inspiration or authority of Scripture.

  • tclune wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is. For me, he wrote it using human conduits with or without their awareness.

    This is often set forth as an "answer" to the authority of scripture, but it doesn't really address the problem. The reality is that one either recognizes that humans played a part in the creation of scripture -- in which case one needs to deal with the uncertainty of what is human and what is divine; or one insists that it is all divine -- in which case one needs to deal with the evil and idiocy that sometimes has to be attributed to the Almighty. Neither option is entirely comfortable AFAICS.

    Give me uncertainty over evil and idiocy every time.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is.
    Not really, no—no more of a problem than you have making the various pieces that conflict with each other fit together, including the inconsistencies about the nature of God. I am simply using a different framework than you, and it simply wrong to suggest that any framework other than yours has a problem with the inspiration or authority of Scripture.
    Then you challenge its authority. Logically there is no other path for you. It cannot be standard or bedrock for you it is simply text, created by man to be manipulated and judged by man. The Jews did not see it that way and neither did the apostolic church.

  • MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is.
    Not really, no—no more of a problem than you have making the various pieces that conflict with each other fit together, including the inconsistencies about the nature of God. I am simply using a different framework than you, and it simply wrong to suggest that any framework other than yours has a problem with the inspiration or authority of Scripture.
    Then you challenge its authority.
    Sorry, but no, I really don’t. Your continuing assumption that for anyone who doesn’t read Scripture as you do—which in some cases, as has been discussed before, would include most if not all Christians who lived prior to the last two centuries—it is “simply text, created by man to be manipulated and judged by man,” is simply wrong.
  • What is it then?
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: I am coming at this from a position that assumes the divine inspiration of Scripture but rejects the idea that God “wrote” Scripture
    You have a problem then of defining what inspiration is and how authoritatve the result is.
    Not really, no—no more of a problem than you have making the various pieces that conflict with each other fit together, including the inconsistencies about the nature of God. I am simply using a different framework than you, and it simply wrong to suggest that any framework other than yours has a problem with the inspiration or authority of Scripture.
    Then you challenge its authority.
    Sorry, but no, I really don’t. Your continuing assumption that for anyone who doesn’t read Scripture as you do—which in some cases, as has been discussed before, would include most if not all Christians who lived prior to the last two centuries—it is “simply text, created by man to be manipulated and judged by man,” is simply wrong.
    Well, how then is it authoritative?

  • LeRocLeRoc Shipmate
    The argument that Scripture is either authoritative or just a text is a classic example of a false dichotomy.
  • I think that indwelling Jesus Christ via the Holy Spirit is meant to be the Christian's authority, including over the diverse interpretations of the diverse scriptures.

    There is a lot more to this than I can explain, but at the moment the following says as much and more and better than I can.
    If scripture is understood as a repository of divinely revealed true propositions and moral absolutes, then normativity will appear as an application of those propositions and absolutes, literally understood, to matters theological, missionary, and personal.

    If scripture is understood as the sacrament of divine revelation, of God's historical self-disclosure, then normativity will be understood as the ever-developing guiding influence on our thought and action of an ever-deepening familiarity with God in Jesus.

    Sandra M. Schneiders Ihm. The Revelatory Text: Interpreting the New Testament as Sacred Scripture (Michael Glazier Books) (Kindle Locations 1440-1442). Kindle Edition.

    First, the text is a human artifact produced by real people in remote times and places and under certain historical circumstances; it is written in a particular ancient language according to forms in use at the time of composition and in the styles of particular writers; it was influenced by the thought, culture, and literature of its environment of composition.

    Sandra M. Schneiders Ihm. The Revelatory Text: Interpreting the New Testament as Sacred Scripture (Michael Glazier Books) (Kindle Locations 2344-2346). Kindle Edition.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    LeRoc wrote: »
    The argument that Scripture is either authoritative or just a text is a classic example of a false dichotomy.
    Really? But what other possibilities are there? You either have a divinely inspired and mandated written revelation of the universal God or you have a bunch of human texts speculating about his nature and purpose, cobbled together by many authors over time and edited by others.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    If scripture is understood as a repository of divinely revealed true propositions and moral absolutes, then normativity will appear as an application of those propositions and absolutes, literally understood, to matters theological, missionary, and personal.

    If scripture is understood as the sacrament of divine revelation, of God's historical self-disclosure, then normativity will be understood as the ever-developing guiding influence on our thought and action of an ever-deepening familiarity with God in Jesus.

    Sandra M. Schneiders Ihm. The Revelatory Text: Interpreting the New Testament
    This seems to be a denial of a propositional approach in favour of a relational one. ISTM though that you can have both.

  • LeRoc wrote: »
    The argument that Scripture is either authoritative or just a text is a classic example of a false dichotomy.

    Again, what is it if it isn't just a text?
  • MPaul wrote: »
    You either have a divinely inspired and mandated written revelation of the universal God or you have a bunch of human texts speculating about his nature and purpose, cobbled together by many authors over time and edited by others.
    No. You are setting up a false dichotomy—that Scripture must be viewed as having been written word-for-word by God through human scribes, or otherwise that the texts are no different from any other texts written by humans. There are other choices.

    I fully accept that you may not see merit in those other choices or find them convincing. Fair enough. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t there.

    MPaul wrote: »
    Well, how then is it authoritative?
    Essays and books can be written and have been written. But to try and put in a few sentences my understanding and the understanding of my particular part of the Body of Christ:

    Scripture is not authoritative because God “wrote” it, nor is it authoritative in the way that a codification of laws is authoritative. It is not a user manual, and it is error to treat it as such.

    Scripture is not meant to reveal all things to us. It is not a science text, nor a history book in the way we’d understand a history book in the 21st Century. Scripture is meant to reveal God. If we ask “what does Scripture teach us about the mechanics of how the world was made,” we’re asking a “wrong” question—a question that Scripture is not intended to answer. If we ask “what does Scripture reveal about the God who made the world,” we’re on the right track.

    Scripture is the writings of humans, but of humans who were inspired by the Holy Spirit to witness to God’s self-revelation in the world—about God’s creative and redeeming work in the world, especially through Jesus Christ, who is the most complete self-revelation of God. As Jesus is the most complete revelation of God, all Scripture must be viewed through a lens of the revelation we see in Jesus Christ. As such, all Scripture is read and understood as witnessing to Christ.

    Through the power of the Holy Spirit, the writers of Scripture were inspired to witness to God in the world. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, God speaks—not spoke, but speaks, in a present encounter—to the church and to the believer through the words of Scripture.

    The Scriptures are authoritative not because God dictated them, but because then and now, in every present moment, God speaks to believers and to the church through them. They are not authoritative in and of themselves; they are authoritative because through them, God speaks.


  • LeRocLeRoc Shipmate
    Although I agree with a lot of what Nick has said, I come from a slightly different angle, in that the term 'authority' isn't really a term that's part of my religious vocabulary.

    The Bible is a collection of writings that started nearly 3000 years ago, written by humans, inspired by God, as their stumbling, stammering attempt to understand more about Her and us. This means that in our present-day stumbling, stammering attempts we are not starting from scratch, but we stand on the shoulders of those who went before us, and can build further both on what they got right and on their mistakes.

    Walking along with them on this almost 3000 year old path is what makes it more than just a text.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen: They are not authoritative in and of themselves; they are authoritative because through them, God speaks.

    This begs the question. It also argues in a circle. You are saying that the authority resides in the fact that they are a mode of revelation but really they can only be such because they are authoritative in themselves.

    ‘God speaks through these texts so they have authority but he speaks through them because they do.’

    You cannot divorce the authority of the texts from their function as a mode of transmission.
  • MPaul wrote: »
    Nick Tamen: They are not authoritative in and of themselves; they are authoritative because through them, God speaks.

    This begs the question. It also argues in a circle.
    Not really. It uses a different framework from the one you employ. You see Scripture as authoritative because God dictated it. I see Scripture as authoritative because God speaks through the words written by humans. Either way, it is God who speaks with authority.

    Where I would differ from you is that I would say ascribing the authority of God to the words of Scripture themselves risks idolatry, because it risks confusing the means of communication with God. (I am not accusing you of idolatry, but rather saying the risk is there in an approach that treats the words as dictated by God.). That is part of what I meant when I said that the idea that God literally wrote Scripture struck me as close to an Islamic understanding of the Quran.

  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    ascribing the authority of God to the words of Scripture themselves risks idolatry
    The greater danger is underestimating it.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    God speaks with authority incarnate. Frail. Not in our frail response to Him.
  • MPaul wrote: »
    ascribing the authority of God to the words of Scripture themselves risks idolatry
    The greater danger is underestimating it.
    We have different views on this, @MPaul.

    I’m not trying to win you over to my view. I’m simply inviting you to recognize that there are more options than God dictated Scripture or the texts are the words of humans and nothing more, and to at least consider the possibility that many, many faithful Christians can and do see Scripture as inspired and authoritative without believing that God basically wrote it.

  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    What can they possibly be more than the words of humans?
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    ascribing the authority of God to the words of Scripture themselves risks idolatry
    The greater danger is underestimating it.
    We have different views on this, @MPaul.

    I’m not trying to win you over to my view. I’m simply inviting you to recognize that there are more options than God dictated Scripture or the texts are the words of humans and nothing more, and to at least consider the possibility that many, many faithful Christians can and do see Scripture as inspired and authoritative without believing that God basically wrote it.
    Right and to believe those options one needs to accept a whole lot of other problems such as tautological reasoning. Anyway, the word inspired does not imply dictated, it does imply purposeful, authoritative and linguistically coherent. It also implies grace as in, ‘study this to know me if you care to accept it.’ It does not allow for alteration or twisting according to linguistic theory or cultural zeitgeist.

  • MPaul wrote: »
    Right and to believe those options one needs to accept a whole lot of other problems such as tautological reasoning. Anyway, the word inspired does not imply dictated, it does imply purposeful, authoritative and linguistically coherent.
    No, but you’ve implied if not outright said dictated. That’s what I’ve been responding to. You said “God wrote [Scripture] using human conduits with or without their awareness.” That sounds an awful lot like dictation to me.

    And despite your assurances to the contrary, your interpretation also requires accepting various problems. But that’s all been hashed over many times.
    It does not allow for alteration or twisting according to linguistic theory or cultural zeitgeist.
    And there we get at it again—the implicit charge that anyone who doesn’t employ a literal, inerrant, dispensationalist interpretation of Scripture is following the cultural zeitgeist, rejecting Scriptural authority or whatever.

    I really don’t know why I keep trying.




  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    I really don’t know why I keep trying
    Well probably you’ve nothing better to do ATM. ISTM you are reading in back story. This is ‘dispensationalist’ or this is a ‘false dichotomy’ or this is ‘simply wrong’ or you are ‘judging’ those who disagree. With a view to the last, so are you and so is everyone who has a view and keeps it quiet. There is no possible way for everyone to be right and none of us wants to fess up to being wrong as pride is the impenetrable wall. However, it all starts with one’s view of the Bible. If the Bible is flawed, we have a loophole to let us out of living in the way it demands.
  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    @Nick - you do it to refine your thinking. Which you can in response to my non-rhetorical question above!
  • MPaul wrote: »
    I really don’t know why I keep trying
    Well probably you’ve nothing better to do ATM. ISTM you are reading in back story. This is ‘dispensationalist’ or this is a ‘false dichotomy’ or this is ‘simply wrong’ or you are ‘judging’ those who disagree. With a view to the last, so are you and so is everyone who has a view and keeps it quiet. There is no possible way for everyone to be right and none of us wants to fess up to being wrong as pride is the impenetrable wall. However, it all starts with one’s view of the Bible. If the Bible is flawed, we have a loophole to let us out of living in the way it demands.
    I’ve never said the Bible is “flawed” or that I’m looking for loopholes. That’s your dismissal, and perhaps your projection, of any view not your own. It’s really tiresome to try and engage, and to be repeatedly met with some version “you just want to avoid the truth.”

    I really see no point in further attempts at discussion.

    Martin54 wrote: »
    @Nick - you do it to refine your thinking. Which you can in response to my non-rhetorical question above!
    Sorry, Martin. I didn’t want to dash off a quick answer and have been pondering. I’ll answer as soon as I can.

  • Martin54Martin54 Shipmate
    MPaul wrote: »
    I really don’t know why I keep trying
    Well probably you’ve nothing better to do ATM. ISTM you are reading in back story. This is ‘dispensationalist’ or this is a ‘false dichotomy’ or this is ‘simply wrong’ or you are ‘judging’ those who disagree. With a view to the last, so are you and so is everyone who has a view and keeps it quiet. There is no possible way for everyone to be right and none of us wants to fess up to being wrong as pride is the impenetrable wall. However, it all starts with one’s view of the Bible. If the Bible is flawed, we have a loophole to let us out of living in the way it demands.

    It demands we murder rape victims.
  • MPaulMPaul Shipmate
    Martin54 wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    I really don’t know why I keep trying
    Well probably you’ve nothing better to do ATM. ISTM you are reading in back story. This is ‘dispensationalist’ or this is a ‘false dichotomy’ or this is ‘simply wrong’ or you are ‘judging’ those who disagree. With a view to the last, so are you and so is everyone who has a view and keeps it quiet. There is no possible way for everyone to be right and none of us wants to fess up to being wrong as pride is the impenetrable wall. However, it all starts with one’s view of the Bible. If the Bible is flawed, we have a loophole to let us out of living in the way it demands.

    It demands we murder rape victims.
    Martin54 wrote: »
    MPaul wrote: »
    I really don’t know why I keep trying
    Well probably you’ve nothing better to do ATM. ISTM you are reading in back story. This is ‘dispensationalist’ or this is a ‘false dichotomy’ or this is ‘simply wrong’ or you are ‘judging’ those who disagree. With a view to the last, so are you and so is everyone who has a view and keeps it quiet. There is no possible way for everyone to be right and none of us wants to fess up to being wrong as pride is the impenetrable wall. However, it all starts with one’s view of the Bible. If the Bible is flawed, we have a loophole to let us out of living in the way it demands.

    It demands we murder rape victims.

    Whatever, Martin 54

    @Nick Tamen. Well mate, it works both ways.
  • MamacitaMamacita Shipmate
    OK, we're done here. MPaul, if you want to do nothing but defend inerrancy, feel free to take it to Dead Horses. I'm closing this thread as it seems beyond redemption at this point.


    Mamacita, Kerygmania Host
This discussion has been closed.