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Monthly Archives: November 2015

My Letter Published in the Concordia St. Paul Student Newspaper Three Years Ago

Reflection on the recent convocation on “Sexuality in the context of the Christian Gospel” by Nathan Rinne, Concordia librarian

I realize that in the aftermath of this event – and the recent election as well – the hopes of those advocating for increased acceptance of “gay-friendly” viewpoints at Concordia is probably quite high. If this is you I hope that you might take a moment to hear the view of one who found the event to be disappointing and discouraging. To me, most of what was said seemed overly emotional and was deficient in the kind of rational discussion that befits a university – especially a university that was founded, and remains rooted, in the Word of God.

Please understand, I want as many students with homosexual inclinations to be at Concordia as possible!  I also want Concordia to be a place where the bullying of such students is utterly condemned.  As the father of five young boys, I will teach them to show genuine kindness towards all people – whoever they are.  As Christians, we not only must do this – we are to delight in doing this.

That said, I also want Concordia to remain what it is – that is, a university that follows in the historic train of the orthodox Christian faith – which means upholding the Scriptures that were delivered to us by the Apostles who were taught and called by Jesus Christ.

One of the frustrating things about a discussion like this is that, as regards the Christian faith, the issue of homosexuality is simply not a focus – even though today many seem to think it is.  I have probably heard my pastors talk about homosexual activity from the pulpit less than five times in my entire life (inevitably when the text specifically mentions it).  Yet, whenever a conversation like this happens, many persons get the impression that the Church is “obsessing over sexual issues”.

The Church does have rather clear teachings and boundaries as regards issues of sexuality, but if we are to be “obsessed” about anything, it is upholding the authority of the Scriptures – of the faith once delivered to the saints.  We long to be faithful to the teachings of our Lord, for He bled and died not only for our sins, but for the sins of the whole world.  Our concern should be that all find their ultimate personal identity in the crucified God-man, Jesus Christ – not in human sexuality.

Really, I would much rather be talking about Jesus’ rescue of the whole world from death, the devil, and, of course, our sin.  I would rather talk ad nauseum about how when we call “sin” what God calls “sin”, we are to immediately call “grace” what God calls “grace”.  And not only to freely receive it for ourselves, but also that we might eagerly give it to our neighbors…. This is what Christianity means to me, and has meant for countless generations of Christians.

In any case, homosexual activity is one of those things the Scriptures call “sin”.  So is all sexual activity outside of marriage by the way – “committed” cohabitation (oxymoron) included.  The same goes for divorces enacted for reasons other than adultery.  In each of these cases, we obviously can’t sensibly talk about persons gladly embracing forgiveness where there is no corresponding repentance.   After all, why is forgiveness needed if there is no wrongdoing?

The mission of organizations like the Gay-Straight Alliance, who some would like to see on campus, is to “educate the school community about homophobia [and] transphobia”. I for one, do not see how the University can possibly endorse such a group on campus.  Those who believe the Scriptures not only contain but are the Word of God realize that they can’t, in good conscience, encourage views that are contrary to its teachings. Written passages from the New Testament like Romans 1, even understood in their original context, are simply too clear to be denied (for those disagreeing here, please stick with me for the rest of what I want to say…)

All this said, there should be plenty of opportunities for robust conversations about topics such as these at Concordia.  For example, students should be able to write papers and give speeches on this topic, arguing either for or against it – without recrimination (I must admit, I was very puzzled when one professor told me he did not let his students write their persuasive paper on the issue of abortion.  If I recall, he said this was because the topic gets discussed too much, or something to this effect).

At the same time, those professors at Concordia who are Christians ought to be concerned to make clear not only what the Scriptures say about this issue, but also not be afraid to encourage persons to look at the variety of social and scientific studies that have been done.  Many times, the popular accounts echoed in the media do not accurately reflect the complex realities the studies speak to.

If there are some faculty who wish to be identified as Christian who are nevertheless convinced that the Church’s historic interpretations of Scriptural passages that deal with this issue are incorrect – and desire to share this in their classes as this seems appropriate – they should also be willing to find the best defenses of the traditional views to share with their class as well.  As I recently wrote in a paper for pre-seminary students:  “We have nothing to fear from a robust conversation with the world.”[1]   But this presumes that we are actually talking about a conversation!

Overall though, I think the fact that the Christian church has historically seen this as a “closed question” needs to be acknowledged as well.  If homosexual activity is indeed a sin, this makes sense of course.  We don’t approach the issue of adultery as if it is an “open question”[2].

But it this position really disturbs you, just keep this in mind: just because your conversation partner seems rather intransigent, it does not mean either that they can’t be civil (and even your friend!) or that either side should think that they have nothing to learn from the disagreement.  This truth, sadly, is often missed.

Let me say for the record that I am pleased to have friends and acquaintances who defend and do things I believe are contrary to God’s will.  These people know that even though I cannot condone their views or behavior, I continue to genuinely care about them (seems I do something similar with my kids all the time).

Can you say the same thing?  Whether you say “yes” or “no”, let’s have a coffee together.  I’ll buy.

 

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Posted by on November 30, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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In a Fallen World, Anger is Meant to be a Good Thing

As regards our anger,  we strive to eliminate the blue more and more.

As regards our anger, we strive to eliminate the blue more and more.

That title sums up my current thoughts about how to biblically think and speak about anger.

A few weeks back, I commended a short piece on anger by David Scaer: “Anger: an Appreciation”.  Shortly thereafter, I was made aware of an article on the same topic published on Concordia seminary’s (in St. Louis) website by professor Jeffrey Gibbs, “The Myth of Righteous Anger”.

I sympathize with both men, but I think that Dr. Gibb’s article highlights a basic Lutheran weakness: because we know that all good works are infected by evil, we sometimes feel like – and give the impression – that we should not talk about good works and emotions vs. evil ones. But indeed, as we well know, there are indeed intrinsically good actions and emotions vs. instrinsically bad ones. “We sin in all our good works?” Well, yes, but “So what?” (that is not just a rhetorical question – see this post).

Take a look at Dr. Gibb’s post, which was very well received.

Here is my first comment to him:

Dr. Gibbs,

First of all, I agree with many (most) of the insights and arguments in your article – particularly your practical advice in the end.

Second, may I be so bold to push back a bit? (please note: this all coming from a person who personally sees little if any righteous anger in himself) Some questions…

Why should the element of emotion – that so clearly lies behind the words in the Psalms – not also be taken as being from God? Including what clearly seems like anger?

You said: “…in the case of Moses or Elijah or Paul, the texts do narrate that they were angry and then acted in response to evil of some sort. But this does not mean we should think that our anger is like theirs, or even that in their anger they did not sin at all.”

And I agree. In like fashion, even though desire for one’s spouse is good (even better than anger, which would not have existed in a pre-fall state) that does not mean it can ever be totally pure. So this being said about anger (its lack of purity), doesn’t the fact remain that they were right to be angry, and that the sinfulness of their anger is made pure through the blood of the Son? In like fashion, it is good for one to desire one’s wife, even though ever purer blood-covered desire should be sought. Do you think that this is a productive way of looking at these matters?

Finally, the real practical problem here, as I see it: if human righteous anger “is a theoretical possibility” (even though you yourself later say “I do agree that we can begin with the notion that human emotions, including anger, are not intrinsically sinful”), we are even less likely to take seriously those persons who may, perhaps, be rightly angry with us (e.g. “that is just a smoke screen, an ‘attempt to justify sarcasm and punitive actions and angry insults’”)

+Nathan Rinne

Here is how he kindly responded:

Dear Nathan,

Thank you very much for writing, and for offering some excellent food for thought! As for your last point, I had not considered that a person might dismiss objections to his/her behavior entirely by rejecting the notion that another is “righteously” angry. We are, of course, capable of turning anything into an opportunity to excuse ourselves. That would be a particularly creative sort of ad hominem defense: “Oh, that’s just he–he’s angry and so I don’t have to listen to him.”

As to the question of the psalmists’ (and others) anger, I’m not sure I would think of them as being made pure through the blood of the Lamb. I don’t think that Christ’s work makes sinful things about me acceptable or pure; rather, his work covers over what is sinful in my motives and pleads for mercy.

I think that I would be more sympathetic to taking directly the anger exhibited in the psalms as acceptable or even exemplary were it not for a basic fact. That is, both testaments have direct teaching about anger in/among the people of God, and none of the explicit teaching casts a favorable light upon it. That’s why, I guess, I’m willing on the one hand to have a “back-up” category of righteous anger. On the other hand, I don’t think it should be a main category in which we think and move.

Just a few thoughts–and thanks again for writing!

In Christ,

Jeff Gibbs

I responded in kind:

Dr. Gibbs,

Thanks for your response to my post. I want to clarify something though.

You said:

“As to the question of the psalmists’ (and others) anger, I’m not sure I would think of them as being made pure through the blood of the Lamb. I don’t think that Christ’s work makes sinful things about me acceptable or pure; rather, his work covers over what is sinful in my motives and pleads for mercy.”

I talked about the Psalmist’s anger being made pure through the blood of the lamb assuming that their anger was righteous (perhaps discussing specific texts – and talking about how anger evident in them could be or should be seen as righteous, is necessary here) – not that it was sinful. I do not think that God sees our sins as good works through the blood of Christ but rather washes them away.

In wanting to defend righteous anger in general and in the Psalms in particular I don’t want to be misunderstood here either. I am not saying, for example, that we should constantly be in a state of anger – but rather that injustice should make us angry, and that anger should drive us to prayer – both for justice and mercy for our enemies.

For example, ISIS in general – not even any individual, but what they are and stand for – makes me angry. I want the wrongs to be righted, even as I want them to find mercy in Christ.

While my motives in my anger are surely not pure here – they need to be washed in the blood of the Lamb – I do think one should be angry. In like fashion, in general, why should our default not be to assume that somehow the anger evident in some of the Psalms is anger in line with God’s cause?

I hope this helps to better explain my thoughts here. Again, I say this as someone like yourself, you would like to be angry less, and usually does not sense much righteousness at all in his anger.

Pax,
+Nathan

His final reply to me:

Dear Nathan,

Thank you for clarifying on the “making pure”–I confess that I misunderstood your words, and I apologize for that. I see now what you mean. And I certainly did not hear (or read) you as promoting anger or something like that.

As to whether the anger in the psalms is in line with God’s cause, I do think it is possible, and I don’t want to dismiss that entirely. As I suggested before, I am just stopped in my tracks by the direct teaching, in both testaments, about anger. For me, that teaching makes me not trust anger, and to do what I can to work through it, rid myself of it, confess my sins, etc.–all of which you also affirmed.

Peace be with you!

Jeff Gibbs

It looks like there has been some other good conversation on the post in recent weeks as well. It might be worth looking at. In world that is getting angrier day by day, it is a good thing to reflect on as Christians.

FIN

 

 
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Posted by on November 28, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

35 (or 33) Christian Theses (and Core Assumptions) About the Character of God, Man, Language, and Interpretation

“It is impossible to revere the Scriptures more deeply or affirm them more completely than Jesus did."—Kevin DeYoung

“It is impossible to revere the Scriptures more deeply or affirm them more completely than Jesus did.”—Kevin DeYoung

For discussion. What would you take out? What would you add?:

  1. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.” (John 1:1-4)
  2. “God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.” (I John 4:16)[i]
  3. “In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.” (I John 4:10)
  4. “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.” (I Cor. 1:18)
  5. Language – communication with those who address us or whom we address in order to talk to or about one another, the world, the variety of goals therein, etc. – is from God and is a great gift of His love.
  6. Operating under the assumption that there is a Divine Being who is responsible for the cosmos, it makes perfect sense to think that this Divine Being would take appropriate measures to clearly communicate with His creatures.
  7. Communication exists primarily for the sake of love between persons, particularly the Creator and the crown of His creatures, man.
  8. Johann Gerhard’s statement, “God has communicated his entire self to you. Communicate also your entire self to your neighbor”, is well said.
  9. While we communicate by a variety of largely non-oral means, God chooses to give us certainty of His gracious presence for us through simple and humble things like His words to us (also bread and wine).
  10. Not only are appointed ministers of the Gospel told that “he who hears you hears me”, but “if anyone speaks, let him speak the oracles of God”, that is, words, which are “at work in you believers”. (I Thes. 2:13)
  11. In fact, “The word… is a living and life-giving instrument of the Spirit; it is in and of itself light, life, power, as many, many Scripture passages explicitly and implicitly make clear”. (Wenz, Armin)

    A question: Was any of the N.T. God’s will? “Christ never wrote a word. Christ never commanded his disciples to write a word. They were commanded to go forth, preach the gospel and to Baptize.” -- Father Freeman

    Was any of the N.T. God’s will? “Christ never wrote a word. Christ never commanded his disciples to write a word. They were commanded to go forth, preach the gospel and to Baptize.” — Father Stephen Freeman

  12. At work in us, words shape and change us, either in the direction of maturity, as God desires, or immaturity, as His enemy the devil desires.  It is through language that God reveals Himself to us and calls us by name.[ii]
  13. More specifically, the key purpose of communication, specifically but not limited to oral language, is that it enables us to share, intelligently navigate, pursue goals in, and enjoy the world and with other persons, present as well as past (i.e. remembering).
  14. Such is God’s design:  all things were created first and foremost for us human beings to inhabit and share together in communion with Him.
  15. This is not to say that truth in language is unimportant – it is always important, even as technical accuracy is not always needed nor even desirable.  To say “the sun rises” today still, post-Galileo, still does not strike us as wrong or in need of adjustment.  This holds true for both oral and written communication, for example.
  16. What is more important – the basis for beneficial communication – is that persons be true, hence acting truly.[iii]
  17. Providentially, speech and the written word are especially critical for making clear to human beings what may be known about God, humanity, and God’s creation – as well as knowledge of our salvation: what it means to be justified before God and to live as His people.
  18. Usually – and sadly – when one hears about how we must articulate the “living reality” of Christian faith and an “organic-historical view” of the same, the real and substantial core of historic Christian proclamation is in the process of being removed.
  19. As regards the matter of proper interpretation of God’s word, man cannot avoid being an interpreter of what he hears, and yet, by the Spirit, he gladly acknowledges that the criterion of God’s word is not himself but God’s self.[iv]
  20. Passages like Rom. 3:19-20 instruct us that when we hear God’s word it is not the time for us to be emphasizing how we are inevitably interpreters of the words of others (perhaps even testing them against other things we know and are confident are true).
  21. The “validation” of God’s word is never subject to our evaluation of its truthfulness to any degree whatsoever.  Nor is the establishment of God’s word in any degree based on our critical evaluation of it.
  22. Re: most modern theological hermeneutical approaches: “By principally making the interpretation [of the Christian Scriptures] dependent on an existentialist preunderstanding, which is supposedly “universal” to modern man, the result is not communication with the author of the message.  Instead the result is nothing but a monologue with the reader.” (Wenz, Armin)[v]
  23. As God unfolds the Christian message before us, particularly from the Holy Scriptures (not a “dead letter in need of an external light”[vi]), much can be learned about the specific nature of the world He has created, including the crown of His creation, humanity.
  24. As regards the Christian Scriptures in particular, “Truths that might not be understandable or plausible, when seen in the light of preunderstanding [i.e. something like Plato’s anamnesis], receive their plausibility when seen in the light of their specific, that is, canonical context.” (Wenz, Armin)
  25. “It ain’t those parts of the Bible that I can’t understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand.” (Mark Twain)
  26. “…when [the Holy Spirit] comes, he will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment: concerning sin, because they do not believe in me…” (John 16: 8, 9)
  27. “[God] has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30)

    Bart Erhman, mountain or molehill? The latter: highly respected by the world, but nevertheless easily dismissible.

    Bart Erhman, mountain or molehill? The latter: highly respected by the world, but nevertheless easily dismissible.

  28. “To join the human race is not merely a consequence of our biological birth; to become human is to answer, to become a language-maker ourselves, an activity that presupposes an interlocutor.” (Bade, David, linguist)
  29. We have no right to assert when that answering begins or has not begun. We should always error on the side of caution, assuming that it begins, in some real sense, when what we call “biological life” begins.
  30. We can responsibly speak about the meaning of the words persons speak to us.  For example, “what do you mean by that?”
  31. Related to this, as regards the idea of “dialectic”, Abelard’s teacher Rosylyn was wrong to insist on what some have called “vocalism”: the idea that dialectic deals with words and not things.
  32. And yet, in addition to saying “…mean by that?” we also say “What do you mean?”, rightly putting the focus on the person and his intended meaning.  And it is even more important to recognize and understand the persons involved – the wider context of the relationship, and, in fact, the meaning of the relationship.[vii]
  33. To say this is not to say that the world of non-persons – perceptible but uncommunicative or less communicative objects – is unimportant.  It, of course, is critical.
  34. “God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God, and God in him.” (I John 4:16)
  35. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.” (John 1:1-4)

    "God’s Word is like bread, intrinsically possessing nutritious power that does not depend on whether it is eaten or not." - Abraham Calov

    “God’s Word is like bread, intrinsically possessing nutritious power that does not depend on whether it is eaten or not.” – Abraham Calov

Additional food for thought:

For more on the issue of the perspicuity of the Scriptures, listen to this White Horse Inn podcast. To see how what a “behind-the-times” piker Karl Barth was see this post. For more about biblical hermeneutics, listen to this Just and Sinner podcast interviewing Pastor Rich Shields and see this post about Luther, Zwingli, and the Hermeneutical Principles of the Lutheran (Christian!) Church. For thoughts about the self-attestation of the truth and “self-authenticating” nature of the Christian message and its relation to evidential and rational considerations, see my series on TSSI (i.e. the “testimonium Spiritu Sancti internum” or internal testimony of the Holy Spirit).

FIN

Notes:

[i] This is truly what it means to start on a high note, rightly praising and exalting love, and strongly exhorting and enticing with the highest and most perfect example. If you talk all day about love being the most precious and most perfect virtue, it is as nothing compared to what John says: “God himself is love.” Accordingly, if you wanted to give a fitting depiction of God, you would have to come up with a picture that is sheer love, as if the divine nature is nothing but a fiery furnace and heat of such a love that fills heaven and earth. Conversely, if you could draw and depict love, you would have to come up with such a picture that would not be artful or human, not even angelic or heavenly, but that would be God himself. (Vol. I, Wittenberg ed., on 1 John) Luther’s Bible Treasures, Lutheran Press, Minneapolis, 2015

[ii] Some quotes from non-theologians exploring this more from a simple human perspective:

“Out of a thousand cares, impressions, and influences which surround, flow around, and beset it, a child gradually stakes out its borders as an independent entity. Its first discovery on its own, therefore, is that it is neither world, nor mother or father, nor God, but something else. The first thing that happens to the child–to every person–is that it is spoken to. It is smiled at, entreated, rocked, comforted, punished, given presents, or nourished. It is first a “you” to a powerful being outside itself–above all to its parents. …Hearing others say that we exist and mean something to them, and that they want something from us, precedes our articulating that we ourselves exist and our articulating what we ourselves are. We develop self-consciousness by receiving commands and by being judged from outside.” (Rosenstock-Huessy,  quoted in David Bade, unpublished paper)

The linguist David Bade comments: “[in] Rosenstock-Huessy’s insistence that language is in its origin and [sic?] always the call of one to another, then rather than referring to language as a thing out there he is always referring to a community of speakers teaching us their language that we might make it our own, voices not within our brain but from the world around us who guide us into the world we make together “towards an unknown future.” It is the speaking community, not a linguistic system, that teaches us and guides us…

For Rosenstock-Huessy, our language is always a response to a prior call from another: we listen to the past and speak now towards the future. His understanding is also in marked contrast with the “scientific” linguistics of Max Müller who argued that “Languages can be analysed and classified on their own evidence … without any reference to the individuals, families, clans, tribes, nations or races by whom they are or have been spoken” (quoted on p. 16, Bade, unpublished paper)

Rosenstock-Huessy again: “Nature” is an abstraction from the saturated-with-language-world, the world minus speech. “Nature” is the result of a subtraction. It is a misleading word, because it seems innocent, a primordial sound, an “a priori.” Yet this is to get everything upside-down for in our actual experience voices call us into life first of all, and water, earth, and wind may concern us only after membership in society and participation in language securely lash us above the abyss of nature. (Rosenstock-Huessy, quoted in David Bade, unpublished paper)

[iii] “true” can also mean good things like being genuine, authentic, sincere, caring, firm in allegiance, loyal, steadfast as well. For example, we speak of true feelings, having a true interest in another’s welfare, or being a true friend. Here, in this sense, it seems to me that “real” could serve as a synonym of true. See http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/true

[iv] For example, these statements from Fowl, in his book “Engaging Scripture”, are problematic: “…theological convictions, ecclesial practices, and communal and social concerns should shape and be shaped by biblical interpretation” and “Biblical interpretation will be the occasion of a complex interaction between the biblical text and the varieties of theological, moral, material, political, and ecclesial concerns that are part of the contexts in which they find themselves.” (p. 60).

As an alternative to this way of putting it, I recommend something like the following:

In the midst of the regular human act of listening (or reading), proper interpretation of the Christian Scriptures in man’s imagination in these last days is a gift of God given by the Holy Spirit, has Christ as its focus, and no longer interprets particular books of the Scriptures in, to some degree, the light of the contemporary circumstances of the church within the world, but now interprets contemporary circumstances in the church within the world primarily in light of the whole of the Scriptures, as the Holy Spirit uses Scripture to interpret Scripture, in line with the legitimate oral tradition bound by the rule of faith (i.e. interpretation is conformed to the articles of faith, the loci, or “seats of doctrine”) and attested to by miracles, i.e. those performed among men by the Triune God

[v] And in the context of an scientifically naturalistic understanding of the world, even infused with some kind of pantheism or soft theism, doing theology from an existential framework is simply a stepping stone towards shifting or adapting “universal” understandings – antithetical to God’s eternal law and gospel.

[vi] Because of God’s providence and the personal power of the Holy Spirit who is always ready to speak to mankind, we cannot responsibly say otherwise than that God’s Word is like bread, intrinsically possessing nutritious power that does not depend on whether it is eaten or not (Calov) – this means that the Scriptures as well must always be seen as a spiritual, effective and sacramental power (Wenz, Armin)…

[vii] “When we answer, we neither repeat merely what the first speaker has said nor do we start in our own language.  … To articulate, then, is a highly complicated act that implies both: identity and variation. Without identifying ourselves with the language as it stands, and as we find it, we cannot say our word, and without varying and deflecting this material in a specific direction that is constituting a new situation created by our own choosing, our entering the ring of the speaking folks would be useless.  … the irresponsible way of using ready-made slogans and judgments in mere repetition without making them ourselves here and now, under our own name, is a vilification of language.” (Rosenstock-Huessy)….

The linguist David Bade comments again: “Barthes, Harris and Rosenstock-Huessy might all have agreed that the unsponsored language of slogans was politically irresponsible and destructive of human relationships, but Rosenstock-Huessy went so far as to insist that in authentic speech there are not only no repetitions but “Es gibt keine Synonyme. [There are no synonyms.]” (Rosenstock-Huessy).”

My note: all interesting thoughts worthy of reflection: but to avoid an infinite regress here, we must assume some common ground somewhere – where we can, in a very real sense, begin to understand one another and the things we choose to speak about because we begin to really understand the words that are being used.

 
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Posted by on November 25, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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The Confession of a Bad Boy Christian

confessionforrestNo, this post is not about me – I’m not what we call a “bad boy” today, though I am, like the Apostle Paul, a person who does find himself thinking, saying and doing evil things (more on that kind of thing here).  The reason for the title of this post will become clear by the end.  Stay with me.

Recently, I have been studying the issue of confession and absolution in the church. One of the interesting books I have taken a look at is “Confession: Doorway to Forgiveness” by Jim Forest (Orbis Books, 2002). Forest is a convert to the Eastern Orthodox Church and so his account is a nice introduction to the topic for those of us who may only be familiar with the Western forms of the tradition.

The last chapter of the book is titled “True Confessions”, and is made up of a number of shorts stories about confession. Most of these stories, anonymous in the book, were solicited by Forest from his friends, and come from several lay people, nuns, monks and priests.

As someone who is eager to uphold and promote the practice of private confession and absolution in the church (literally a matter of life and death, as this short clip from the old TV show “ER” shows), it was heartening to read these accounts, even if occasionally some of the theology they contained made me wince a bit. Here is an excerpt from a rather self-reflective story that I found to be refreshing and worth noting:

“I must admit there is a feeling of companionship somehow, even as we sit separately in the darkened chapel. There is not a lot of contact or talk as we wait. And when glances do meet on occasion, usually the slight smile of acknowledgment fades as your eyes fall to the floor. I sit in my chair, hands folded nervously on my lap. There was only one time I just couldn’t face the process and left. It had been raining and as I sat watching I tried to talk myself out of staying because if I missed my bus, I’d miss my subway train, and on and on, until I got up and walked out the door. But as I walked in the rain to the corner, I realized it wasn’t the commute I dreaded but confession.

I have problems with trying to know what to say. It’s not that I don’t recognize that I’m a sinner, but I seem to accept sin as part of human nature or personality, which makes it something that is not going to really change very much or go away. Thinking like this kind of normalizes relations with sin while at the same time ignoring the darkest consequences or source of sin. It’s like favored nation trading status with a dictatorship. We want all the benefits of trade but overlook the violations of human rights and integrity.

There are a lot of problems with this, I realize, but in some ways I’ve used sin to define myself and not necessarily in a negative light. I’ve noticed that when my old friends and I get together and talk we spend hours laughing and retelling stories about our wild youth. It seems, however, that those stories are in many ways stories about how much we enjoyed committing sins. Maybe that’s where the expression “sins of youth” comes from. Sin is expected in the young. Of course we’re not talking about major crimes against people, but when I stop to think about it, they may be crimes against God and certainly the teachings of the Church.

I still have a tendency to see the wild side as freer than the temperate, and to see rebellion as much more positive than negative and a way to distance oneself from the banality and mediocrity of mass society.

My impatience and temper, my sarcasm, my so-called “biting wit” are ways I define “me as me” in the world. Of course, those somehow become translated and calculated in a vast personal algebra of character and predisposition.

Unfortunately, I have a tendency to reduce those traits into a continuum of understandable explanations and excuses for my personal behavior and relations to others and the world. I weave stories and reasons into a systematic construction that leads me to conclude that what I have done is generally acceptable given the circumstances of my life. I reduce my sins to a group of personality traits.

As I sit waiting for our priest to complete hearing the confession of the person before me, I consider what I will say. I think about my actions during the period since my last confession and sort out what a sin is from what is not. It’s not hard to recall my anger or sharp words. It’s not hard to recall my foul mouth and quick temper. It’s not hard to recall too many vodkas. I count and measure, divide by time and guilt, and usually come up with a list of behaviors I’m not proud of. I guess being ashamed about something is a pretty good sign that some definition or variable of sin may be involved. A guilty conscience was the first compass I had in learning how to recognize sin.

Though I don’t like doing it, and I don’t do it well, there is a great respect and intimacy in the act of making confession and that seems understood and respected by everyone in the church. There is a quietness in waiting that surrounds us in our quandary and distress.”

As a Lutheran, I am eager to not only talk about confession, but the issue of absolution (our churches do not require private absolution, even as it is encouraged – see Luther’s Small Catechism on the topic and  here for more). As pertains to confession, there are surely times, when, reflecting on the ten commandments, we will be very aware of our specific sins.  And at the same time, there will surely be times we may wonder whether or not a particular action that we did – even if the action itself is unobjectionable* – showed a lack of true love (“Should I have spent time with the kids helping them with their latest project instead of the ‘me time’ I took yesterday?”). And of course, it is no surprise that Martin Luther, always eager to point out that sin touches all of our actions, takes us deeper into the meaning of confession. Here is one of his key writings on the topic (the Smalcald Articles), where he also highlights for us the importance of the absolution, or Gospel, as well:

This, then, is what it means to begin true repentance; and here man must hear such a sentence as this: You are all of no account, whether you be manifest sinners or saints [in your own opinion]; you all must become different and do otherwise than you now are and are doing [no matter what sort of people you are], whether you are as great, wise, powerful, and holy as you may. Here no one is [righteous, holy], godly, etc.

Here Luther, eager to share the biblical themes of deep sin and deep grace, is putting forward something like this provocative and well-intentioned blog post – but without the real measure of offense which that post contains. He goes on:

But to this office the New Testament immediately adds the consolatory promise of grace through the Gospel, which must be believed, as Christ declares, Mark 1:15: Repent and believe the Gospel, i.e., become different and do otherwise, and believe My promise. And John, preceding Him, is called a preacher of repentance, however, for the remission of sins, i.e., John was to accuse all, and convict them of being sinners, that they might know what they were before God, and might acknowledge that they were lost men, and might thus be prepared for the Lord, to receive grace, and to expect and accept from Him the remission of sins. Thus also Christ Himself says, Repentance and remission of sins must be preached in My name among all nations.

But whenever the Law alone, without the Gospel being added exercises this its office there is [nothing else than] death and hell, and man must despair, like Saul and Judas; as St. Paul, Rom. 7:10, says: Through sin the Law killeth. On the other hand, the Gospel brings consolation and remission not only in one way, but through the word and Sacraments, and the like, as we shall hear afterward in order that [thus] there is with the Lord plenteous redemption, as Ps. 130:7 says against the dreadful captivity of sin.

Read more of this from Luther here.

FIN

 

*The author of this account discusses the actual sins and sinful habits (activities that are objectively evil) that he feels guilty about. Luther also makes some comments about confessing actual sins in the Smalcald Articles as well:

“And in Christians this repentance continues until death, because, through the entire life it contends with sin remaining in the flesh, as Paul, Rom. 7:14-25, [shows] testifies that he wars with the law in his members, etc.; and that, not by his own powers, but by the gift of the Holy Ghost that follows the remission of sins. This gift daily cleanses and sweeps out the remaining sins, and works so as to render man truly pure and holy…

It is, accordingly, necessary to know and to teach that when holy men, still having and feeling original sin, also daily repenting of and striving with it, happen to fall into manifest sins, as David into adultery, murder, and blasphemy, that then faith and the Holy Ghost has departed from them [they cast out faith and the Holy Ghost]. For the Holy Ghost does not permit sin to have dominion, to gain the upper hand so as to be accomplished, but represses and restrains it so that it must not do what it wishes. But if it does what it wishes, the Holy Ghost and faith are [certainly] not present. For St. John says, 1 John 3:9: Whosoever is born of God doth not commit sin, … and he cannot sin. And yet it is also the truth when the same St. John says, 1:8: If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

 
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What One of My Classes at Concordia St. Paul Looks Like

Last night for the online class I teach at Concordia (an introduction to “historic, biblical Christianity” as we say), I was doing the class from within a moving car and forgot to record our WebEx session. Ugh. As a student missed the class, I was not sure what to do.

I decided to go back to one of the transcripts from one of my previous classes when we did not use WebEx, but only text chat.  I changed all of the names and dates in the chat and thought it might be interesting for some of you to see what the class basically looks like.

Just by perusing the transcript you might get a feel for why I like the online style of teaching so much. Look at the kind of participation that you can get.  My comments are in ALL CAPS.  When people use the asterisk (*), that just means: “OK / I am following you / I understand, etc”

The chat is done 7 times but the main component of the class is the reading the students must do and the discussion boards. Each week’s chat looks more deeply at the previous week’s reading.

I hope you enjoy the peek.

 

Nathan Rinne: LET’S GET STARTED… THE FIRST 3 CHAPTERS OF GENESIS – WHAT STOOD OUT TO YOU? EVERYONE THROW OUT SOMETHING… Xxx 25, 2015 8:04:44 PM CDT
Josephine H.: I’ve been finding a lot of interesting ideas that I don’t have time to further explore now, so making marks in the Bible to go back later 🙂 Xxx 25, 2015 8:04:52 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: The part where God asked Abraham to sacrifice his son. I was a little upset by this, even though he stopped him before he actually did it. Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:22 PM CDT
Anita Z.: I almost wish this class was seperated into 2 classes, I totally agree with you MEGAN! Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:25 PM CDT
Megan A.: I’m finding it interesting to see how the names I have heard throughout my life are related ad connected. Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:35 PM CDT
Susan R.: @MIRANDA I agree Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:39 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: oh whoops. First 3 chapters! Sorry Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:40 PM CDT
Susan R.: Adam and Eve. They ate the apple. This is where everything seems to start Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:44 PM CDT
Julie B.: Cain killing Abel Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:46 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: YEP – FIRST THREE… Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:47 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: Adam and Eve Xxx 25, 2015 8:05:51 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: The serpent Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:00 PM CDT
Karen M.: Abraham having to sacrafice his first child Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:02 PM CDT
Susan R.: I also liked reasing about the creation of the world. Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:09 PM CDT
Jillian O.: Something that has always stood out to me is when God refers ho himself as “us” a few times in the beggining of Genesis Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:10 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: o good one KAREN Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:14 PM CDT
Mason L.: Humanity starting out from Adam & Eve.. Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:19 PM CDT
Martha O.: learning how all the creation started Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:25 PM CDT
John W.: Abraham being asked to sacrafice his son was an intense passage. I was thoroughly impressed with Abrhams response. Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:27 PM CDT
Jillian O.: also the serpent, which is not specifically described as the devil Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:31 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: The marvelousness of what he is creating. Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:44 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THAT COMES LATER GUYS – ABRAHAM AND ISAAC THAT IS.. Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:45 PM CDT
Karen M.: Also yes how everything was created including man and woman Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:49 PM CDT
John W.: sorry Xxx 25, 2015 8:06:54 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: The notes that you gave to us were also something that made me really think when you suggested that the the tree was put there because we need to want to obey God Xxx 25, 2015 8:07:31 PM CDT
Martha O.: reading about the flesh and using the ribs to create a woman right? Xxx 25, 2015 8:07:33 PM CDT
Josephine H.: The idea of God “walking through the Garden”…really great to imagine God enjoying his creation like a gardener enjoying their garden and hard work Xxx 25, 2015 8:07:39 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: OK. YES, IN THE BEGINNING THINGS WERE MADE VERY GOOD. ADAM AND EVE HAD IT ALL – THEY WERE ONLY TOLD TO NOT EAT FROM THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:07:51 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: ANYONE WONDER ABOUT THE IDENTITY OF THE SERPENT? Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:06 PM CDT
Michael A.: Your notes tipped me off to how God created Man differntly than everything else… Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:13 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: I did! Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:14 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: MARTHA…I love that part! We read that passage at my wedding. Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:16 PM CDT
Susan R.: Yes, I just think of the devil Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:18 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: I always felt it was the devil Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:21 PM CDT
Susan R.: I thought he was the devil Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:23 PM CDT
Jillian O.: CASSIDY-good point. free will Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:25 PM CDT
Martha O.: wow MIRANDA Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:26 PM CDT
John W.: I thought devil Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:35 PM CDT
Rebecca S.: devil was my thought Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:36 PM CDT
Megan A.: I’ve heard that he represents Satan Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:37 PM CDT
Karen M.: I did and then kept reading, didn’t think too much about it Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:42 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: I just thought it was a snake. Haha Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:55 PM CDT
Jillian O.: I did wonder Xxx 25, 2015 8:08:57 PM CDT
Jillian O.: Why is it assumed that he is the devil? or it… Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:18 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: IV. HE IS USUALLY ASSOCIATED WITH SATAN, LUCIFER, THE DEVIL. HIS BEGINNING IS A BIT OF A MYSTERY, BUT THERE ARE SEVERAL SCRIPTURAL PASSAGES THAT SUGGEST HE WAS AN ANGEL, WHO, IN HIS PRIDE, REBELLED AGAINST GOD AND TOOK 1/3 OF THE ANGELS WITH HIM. IN THE N.T. IT TALKS ABOUT THE CHURCH CRUSHING SATAN UNDERNEATH THEIR FEET… Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:21 PM CDT
Susan R.: Could he have been God trying to see if they would decieve him?? Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:22 PM CDT
Michael A.: “Talking” snake made me think Satan Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:33 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: What i didn’t really think about until reading now was if God put him there to tempt Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:43 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: wow I would have never considered that Xxx 25, 2015 8:09:50 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: i just assumed he came to try to mennace what God had created Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:00 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Good point, MICHAEL! Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:04 PM CDT
Martha O.: me neither Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:05 PM CDT
Rebecca S.: i had always heard the saying the devil used to be an angel when I was little but didn’t understand it at the time Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:13 PM CDT
Karen M.: interesting, I wouldn’t have thought about it in that light Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:13 PM CDT
Jillian O.: I started on next weeks reading and Job specifically talks about the angel satan Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:14 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DEFINITELY ALLOWED BY GOD TO BE THERE. THAT IS FOR SURE…. SO, WHAT IS THE MAIN THING THE SERPENT SAID TO THEM? Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:18 PM CDT
John W.: Wow I never heard about the fact he was thought to be an angel previously Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:18 PM CDT
Mason L.: So God created his angels before he created man? Xxx 25, 2015 8:10:40 PM CDT
Mason L.: Were they around before creation of the world? Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:05 PM CDT
Susan R.: nothing will happen if they dont obey Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:06 PM CDT
Susan R.: That if they eat the fruit they will become like God and know good from evil. Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:11 PM CDT
Michael A.: He told them that if they eat the apple their eyes will be opened Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:13 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: MASON – SEEMS TO BE THE CASE… THEY ARE CREATIONS OF GOD, AND SO WOULD HAVE BEEN MADE AT SOME POINT BEFOREHAND… Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:18 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: they would be like God Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:22 PM CDT
John W.: That God would want them to think for themselves and eat the fruit. Nothin would happen Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:23 PM CDT
Megan A.: That they would be like God Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:26 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Agreed, SUSAN. And that they won’t die. Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:28 PM CDT
Julie B.: to make them question what God said Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:35 PM CDT
Karen M.: eat the apple, they won’t die Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:38 PM CDT
Susan R.: I don’t think they were told that they would not di Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:43 PM CDT
Susan R.: or become immortal. Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:51 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: OK GUYS – YES – HE SAID ALL THESE THINGS. HERE, THOUGH, IS THE GIST OF IT: “DID GOD REALLY SAY?” Xxx 25, 2015 8:11:59 PM CDT
Susan R.: tempting them Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:11 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: NOTICE THE SEED OF DOUBT…. DID GOD REALLY SAY?…. I SUGGEST THAT HIS TACTICS HAVE NOT CHANGED SINCE THE BEGINNING OF TIME. Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:25 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:45 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:49 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:53 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:55 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:56 PM CDT
John W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:56 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DO ANY OF YOU SEE THE IRONY IN SATAN TELLING THEM THEY WOULD BE LIKE GOD? WHY SHOULD THAT PERHAPS STAND OUT TO US? (GREAT JULIE- THAT’S IT) Xxx 25, 2015 8:12:56 PM CDT
Anita Z.: Evil can protray itself as good at points Xxx 25, 2015 8:13:28 PM CDT
Mason L.: It sounds like all Satan needed to do was just plant a seed of doubt.. Xxx 25, 2015 8:13:40 PM CDT
John W.: Yeah because if God said not to eat it why would eating it make them like God? Xxx 25, 2015 8:13:42 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: Because no one can be like God. He is the creator of all Xxx 25, 2015 8:13:50 PM CDT
Megan A.: Feeding into their ego Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:01 PM CDT
Susan R.: I don’t know actually Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:12 PM CDT
Megan A.: Pride is a deadly sin Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:24 PM CDT
Susan R.: what @CASSIDY said Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:26 PM CDT
Michael A.: People always seek to rationalize their behavior somehow… Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:26 PM CDT
Martha O.: me neither SUSAN Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:28 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: OK – HERE IS WHAT I AM THINKING: THEY WERE LIKE GOD ALREADY. THEY WERE NOT GOD, BUT HIS CREATION BUT THEY WERE LIKE HIM – IN HIS IMAGE… Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:30 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:42 PM CDT
Josephine H.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:44 PM CDT
Susan R.: I understand now. Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:46 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:47 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: QUITE THE LIE, HUH? Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:49 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:50 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:50 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:50 PM CDT
John W.: Oh i see Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:50 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: true Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:53 PM CDT
Karen M.: got it Xxx 25, 2015 8:14:56 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: AFTER ADAM AND EVE COMMIT THE SIN, SOMETHING CHANGES WITHIN THEM. HOW DO WE KNOW THAT? Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:03 PM CDT
John W.: Yeah very much so Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:04 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:04 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: they covered themselves Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:14 PM CDT
Mason L.: They feel shame Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:16 PM CDT
Susan R.: bcause they knew that hey were naked Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:22 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: they felt shame Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:25 PM CDT
Susan R.: Cover themselves Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:27 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: They hid when they heard God coming. Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:29 PM CDT
Karen M.: how they felt, shame Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:29 PM CDT
John W.: They start questioning things and did not want to be naked because they were ashamed Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:30 PM CDT
Susan R.: and covered themselves when God arrived Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:30 PM CDT
Michael A.: Their innocence was gone Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:31 PM CDT
Martha O.: they laid naked on the ground Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:33 PM CDT
Megan A.: They realize their nudity and try to hide it – shame Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:34 PM CDT
Jillian O.: yes they were ashamed to be anked Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:36 PM CDT
Rebecca S.: they felt ashamed and covered Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:45 PM CDT
Julie B.: they needed to cover themselves, feeling shame. Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:45 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: ashamed of themselves embarassed Xxx 25, 2015 8:15:52 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: they also hid when God came back Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:05 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: VERY GOOD…. THAT’S RIGHT. THEY TURN FROM TRUSTING GOD AND HIS WORDS TO THE DEVIL AND HIS WORDS AND THEY REALIZE THEY ARE NAKED. THIS IS KNOWN AS THE FALL. THIS SHOWS US THEIR INNOCENCE BEING LOST. SOMETHING – NOT NECESARILY SOMETHING TOO TANGIBLE – IN HUMANITY HAS FUNDAMENTALLY CHANGED…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:10 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:26 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:30 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:34 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:37 PM CDT
Michael A.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:38 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:38 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:40 PM CDT
Josephine H.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:50 PM CDT
John W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:50 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:51 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THEY ARE NO LONGER SEEKING GOD, LOOKING FORWARD TO WAKING WITH HIM IN FELLOWSHIP IN THE GARDEN. THEY ARE RUNNING FROM HIM… Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:53 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:16:55 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:05 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:15 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:18 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:19 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:25 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: AND THIS IS A SIGN FOR US – WE ALL, BY NATURE, CONTINUE TO RUN FROM HIM. WHEN ADAM AND EVE HAVE CHILDREN, WE ARE NOW TOLD THEY ARE IN THEIR IMAGE…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:35 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: They now fear him that is something new to them too. Am i correct Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:36 PM CDT
Susan R.: not in God Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:54 PM CDT
Susan R.: s image? Xxx 25, 2015 8:17:56 PM CDT
Susan R.: but in the image of Adam and Eve correct? Xxx 25, 2015 8:18:30 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SO… WHAT DID GOD TELL ADAM AND EVE WOULD HAPPEN THE DAY THEY ATE FROM THE TREE OF THE KNOWLEDGE OF GOOD AND EVIL (NOT FROM THE TREE OF LIFE) … DEFINITELY CASSIDY…SUSAN – NO, THAT IS STILL THERE (SEE GEN. 9) FRACTURED MAYBE… BUT STILL THERE… BUT IT DOES SAY SETH IS IN THEIR IMAGE…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:18:44 PM CDT
Michael A.: Why was the apple forbidden in the first palce? Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:10 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SO BOTH… ITS JUST NOW THE EMPHASIS IS ON THE THEIR BEING IN THEIR OWN IMAGE…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:17 PM CDT
Megan A.: they would surely die Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:23 PM CDT
Susan R.: gotcha Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:37 PM CDT
Susan R.: they were cursed Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:56 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DID THEY MEGAN? Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:59 PM CDT
John W.: They would die Xxx 25, 2015 8:19:59 PM CDT
Martha O.: without the ability to not love, without the ability to disobey? Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:20 PM CDT
John W.: No they didn’t because they were punished and forgiven Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:30 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: no they didn’t Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:34 PM CDT
Megan A.: No, not immediately, he gave them punishment instead Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:36 PM CDT
Martha O.: without the option to chose? Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:42 PM CDT
Megan A.: The first example of his grace Xxx 25, 2015 8:20:59 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: GOOD… THEY DID NOT DIE PHYSICALLY…. THAT WOULD TAKE A WHILE (THE PROCESS UNDOUTEDLY STARTED AT THAT TIME THOUGH) – THEY DID DIE SPIRITUALLY THOUGH… Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:05 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:24 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: MICHAEL – I’D SAY IT WAS A TEST OF SORTS… THEY HAD TO BE FREE TO NOT LOVE Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:36 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: i never considered that they died spiritually but it makes a lot of sense Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:40 PM CDT
Susan R.: How did they die spiratually? They stil believed in God and had faith in him. Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:42 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: I was thinking that too, they died in a way. Their perfect life had come to an end Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:42 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:42 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:47 PM CDT
Rebecca S.: makes sense Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:55 PM CDT
John W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:21:56 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:03 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: YES, SPIRITIUAL DEATH…. AS WE SAW – SOMETHING CHANGED. INNOCENCE LOST. RELATIONSHIP SEVERED. FAR FROM HIM. NOT SEEKING HIM. WITHOUT HIM THERE IS NO LIFE. WE SHARE THE NATURE THEY CORRUPTED… WE ARE BORN SPIRITUALLY DEAD. Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:05 PM CDT
Susan R.: Thanks, I understand now. Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:27 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SO THEY HAVE SEVERED THEMSELVES FROM HIM. BUT WHAT DOES HE DO NEXT FOR THEM? (DID THEY SUSAN?) Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:30 PM CDT
Karen M.: thanks, makes better sense now Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:38 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: so do we ever become spiritually alive then? Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:44 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DID HE DESTORY THEM AND START OVER? Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:44 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DID HE PUNISH THEM AND LEAVE THEM HIGH AND DRY? Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:54 PM CDT
Jillian O.: No gives them children Xxx 25, 2015 8:22:57 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: No he let them live and have a life, family, and children Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:11 PM CDT
Karen M.: no Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:13 PM CDT
Susan R.: He did later on with Noah and the arc. Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:22 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: He punishes them by making women feel pain during childbirth and man having to work hard in the fields for food. Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:27 PM CDT
Michael A.: no, Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:27 PM CDT
Megan A.: No, he gave them the ability to produce and eat food, still have children, but with pain Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:30 PM CDT
Susan R.: Gave them clothing and a family Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:31 PM CDT
John W.: No he forgave them Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:37 PM CDT
Josephine H.: He punishes them, but he’s still there for him: kind of like when a parent grounds their chilld…still there and loving them, but there is consequences Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:42 PM CDT
John W.: but made them feel the pain of their choices Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:48 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: He does give them pennace with what will now change in their lives Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:51 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: HE REACHED OUT TO THEM. HE DID MAKE CLOTHES FOR THEM AND WE CAN ASSUME THIS IS THE FIRST TIME BLOOD IS SHED AS WELL… A HARBINGER OF HOW BLOOD PAYS FOR THE PRICE OF SIN.. Xxx 25, 2015 8:23:56 PM CDT
Susan R.: He sort of forgave them but he did punish them, like everyoine else is saying Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:02 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: @JOSEPHINE! I like that. Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:04 PM CDT
Michael A.: did he change them from immortal to mortal? Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:21 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THERE IS NO DOUBT THAT THERE WERE PUNSHMENTS OR CONSEQUENCES FOR THEIR SIN… BUT THE EMPHASIS IS ON THE GRACE…. (NICE JOSEPHINE…) Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:27 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:58 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: I am Catholic and it is kind of like the penance after confession! 🙂 Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:58 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:24:58 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:25:04 PM CDT
Julie B.: But they received two punishments to the one sin?? Xxx 25, 2015 8:25:09 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: MICHAEL – IT WOULD SEEM THAT THEY THEMSELVES DID THAT… THEY WERE NOT IMMORTAL IN THEMSELVES BUT MEANT, IT SEEMS, TO TAKE PART IN IMMORTALITY THROUGH FAITH/UNION WITH HIM. Xxx 25, 2015 8:25:14 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: JULIE- COULD YOU EXPLAIN WHAT YOU MEAN? Xxx 25, 2015 8:25:33 PM CDT
Julie B.: So Eve received the pain of childbirth and the death of spirituality Xxx 25, 2015 8:25:57 PM CDT
Julie B.: and Adam recieved to the punishment to work in the soil and the death of spirituality Xxx 25, 2015 8:26:21 PM CDT
Julie B.: I want to make sure I’m following, thanks. Xxx 25, 2015 8:26:31 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: I AM SAYING THE EMPHASIS IS ON GRACE….GOD REACHED OUT TO ADAM AND EVE NOT JUST WITH CLOTHES BUT WITH WORDS – IN THE BIBLE WE ARE TOLD THAT IT IS THESE WORDS OF GOD THAT HAVE THE POWER TO NOT ONLY CREATE THE WORLD FROM NOTHING BUT TO GIVE REAL SPIRITUAL LIFE…. (JULIE- THERE WERE ALSO MORE PUNISHMENTS AS WELL… BUT HERE, I DO SUGGEST IT IS EASY TO OVERLOOK THE GRACE SHOWN… SO I AM HIGHLIGHTING IT – ITS THERE!) Xxx 25, 2015 8:26:51 PM CDT
Josephine H.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:13 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:16 PM CDT
Susan R.: & Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:17 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:24 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:35 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:35 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:39 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: He is showing he still loves them, and is there for them Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:40 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:42 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:44 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: GOD’S WORDS ARE SPIRIT AND LIFE, AND AS JESUS WILL TELL US LATER IN THE BIBLE, WE LIVE BY EVERY WORD THAT COMES FROM HIS MOUTH… Xxx 25, 2015 8:27:52 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:21 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:26 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:31 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: IT IS THAT WORD THAT RESTORES ADAM AND EVE…. THESE ARE WORDS THAT BRING US FROM DARKNESS TO LIFE. THEY ARE NOT JUST INFORMATION THAT WE ACT ON – THEY ARE WORDS THAT DO SOMETHING – LIKE A PASTOR SAYING “I PRONOUNCE YOU MAN AND WIFE” Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:33 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:35 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DID ANY OF YOU REMEMBER WHAT GOD PROMISED TO EVE? Xxx 25, 2015 8:28:49 PM CDT
Megan A.: No, not off the top of my head. Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:14 PM CDT
Susan R.: I do not. Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:26 PM CDT
Martha O.: sorry Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:30 PM CDT
Megan A.: And sorry, I had Lasik this afternoon so I cant really read it right now Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:32 PM CDT
Karen M.: no, drawing a blank Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:36 PM CDT
John W.: No Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:52 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SEE – IT IS HARD TO REMEMBER THE GRACE SHOWN…. IN GENESIS 3:15 GOD GIVES HER THE PROMISE THAT HER OFFSPRING WILL DESTROY EVIL (HERE WHERE WE GET INTO LORD OF THE RINGS/HERO KINDS OF STUFF) Xxx 25, 2015 8:29:53 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: OR STAR WARS…. LUKE…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:02 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: BUT THIS IS THE REAL CHOSEN ONE Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:12 PM CDT
Megan A.: Oh, yes, I missed that completely Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:22 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: WHO IS THAT OFFSPRING? IN THE NEW TESTAMENT THE CONNECTION IS MADE SPECIFICALLY… Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:28 PM CDT
Susan R.: I did too. I just overlooked that part. Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:35 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: HER OFFSPRING, WHO WILL CRUSH SATAN’S HEAD, IS JESUS…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:42 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:30:57 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: HE IS THE PROMISE WHO EMBODIES THE GRACE AND MERCY ALREADY SHOWN RIGHT AFTER THE FALL… Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:00 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:01 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:19 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:22 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:23 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:26 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:28 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:29 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: NOW, ADAM AND EVE WERE RESTORED TO A RELATIONSHIP WITH GOD THROUGH HIS LOVING WORDS TO THEM. BUT THEY STILL BORE THE EFFECTS OF SIN. THE FACT THAT THEY WOULD PHYSICALLY DIE SHOWS THAT THE INFECTION OF SIN STILL WAS IN THEM – IN SPITE OF THEIR BELIEIVNG… Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:34 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:38 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:50 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:31:54 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:00 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:05 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:06 PM CDT
Josephine H.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:10 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: WHEN THEY WOULD HEAR THE WORD THOUGH, THEY WOULD BE SUSTAINED SPIRITUALLY, BUT THEY WOULD NOT BE TOTALLY HEALED UNTIL AFTER DEATH – WHEN THEY WOULD LIVE FOREVER… Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:10 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:46 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:50 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:57 PM CDT
John W.: Oh I understand that . Xxx 25, 2015 8:32:59 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THIS IS THE STORY FOR BELIEVERS TODAY AS WELL. THEY NEED TO KEEP HIS WORD. CLING TO IT. IT GIVES LIFE. IT SUSTAINS. BECAUSE IT IS FROM THE SOURCE OF LIFE AND ALL GOOD. Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:03 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: DOES THIS MAKE SENSE TO YOU? Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:21 PM CDT
Susan R.: yup Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:25 PM CDT
Mason L.: Everlasting life Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:29 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:30 PM CDT
Michael A.: yes Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:34 PM CDT
John W.: Yes for sure. Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:37 PM CDT
Karen M.: yes, it makes sense Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:39 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Makes sense. Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:41 PM CDT
Jillian O.: yes Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:44 PM CDT
Megan A.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:47 PM CDT
Susan R.: yes Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:50 PM CDT
Martha O.: yes Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:55 PM CDT
Josephine H.: Definitely Xxx 25, 2015 8:33:57 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: IF YOU ARE INTERSTED IN THIS ANALOGY OF SIN AS A FATAL INFECTION, CHECK OUT ROMANS 7 – WE’LL GET TO IT EVENTUALLY. BUT HERE WE SEE THAT EVEN CHRISTIANS STILL DEAL WITH THE POWER OF SIN IN THEIR LIVES – BEING IN THEM… CAUSING THEM TO DO WHAT THEY REALLY DON’T WANT TO DO… Xxx 25, 2015 8:34:17 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: BUT THAT CHAPTER ENDS WITH HOPE IN CHRIST WHO HELPS US FIGHT SIN IN THIS LIFE AND WE KNOW WILL TOTALLY RID US OF IT IN THE LIFE TO COME… Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:00 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: ALRIGHT – LET’S LOOK AT EXODUS – WHO IS GOD DEFEATING? Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:20 PM CDT
Michael A.: Pharoh Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:45 PM CDT
John W.: Pharoah Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:54 PM CDT
Megan A.: Egyptians Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:54 PM CDT
Josephine H.: Pharoah Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:56 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: Pharoh Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:57 PM CDT
Martha O.: Aron Xxx 25, 2015 8:35:58 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THIS IS A CHALLENGING QUESTION…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:01 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Pharoh Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:01 PM CDT
Susan R.: Pharaoah Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:02 PM CDT
Karen M.: Pharroah Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:04 PM CDT
Susan R.: The Pharoh and Egyptons Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:10 PM CDT
Julie B.: cruelty to people Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:16 PM CDT
Jillian O.: yeah this is a trick question but I don;’t know the right answer Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:20 PM CDT
Megan A.: The worship of others not HIm Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:21 PM CDT
Michael A.: thought it was too easy Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:21 PM CDT
Martha O.: yes Pharroach…sorry Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:27 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: IT SAYS IN EXODUS 12:12 HE BEATS THE GODS OFTHE EGYPTIANS… OH JILLIAN, WOULD I DO THAT? : ) Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:41 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: BUT WHO WERE THEY? Xxx 25, 2015 8:36:55 PM CDT
Jillian O.: demons? Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:10 PM CDT
Michael A.: False Gods? Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:23 PM CDT
Mason L.: Oppressors Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:24 PM CDT
Karen M.: first born people? Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:29 PM CDT
Julie B.: first born Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:32 PM CDT
Susan R.: I agree, false Gods? Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:39 PM CDT
Jillian O.: either demons or false gods…..?? Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:40 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: JILLIAN – YOU GOT IT. THE APOSTLE PAUL IN 1 Corinthians 10:20 Xxx 25, 2015 8:37:50 PM CDT
Jillian O.: yay! Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:01 PM CDT
Martha O.: go JILLIAN 🙂 Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:09 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Way to go, JILLIAN!!! Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:12 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SO YES – ULTIMATELY GOD IS OUT TO BEAT THE DEVIL. GOD JUDGES HIM AND HIS OTHER FALLEN ANGELS. HELL IS ACTUALLY FOR HIM, NOT MAN. Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:13 PM CDT
Julie B.: good job JILLIAN 🙂 Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:17 PM CDT
John W.: Wow nice JILLIAN Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:23 PM CDT
Jillian O.: now I get it….I was wondering what these “magicians were” Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:25 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THAT SAID, THOSE WHO GET CAUGHT UP IN HIS TRAIN, FOLLOWING THE DEVIL, GO WITH THE DEVIL. Xxx 25, 2015 8:38:29 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:03 PM CDT
Karen M.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:06 PM CDT
Anita Z.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:09 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:15 PM CDT
Jillian O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:19 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: WE MAY THINK GOD IS HARSH IN THE OT. BUT – I SUGGEST – WE REALLY HAVE THIS BIG, BIG PROBLEM OF UNDERESTIMATING THE EVILS OF HUMAN NATURE. HAVE YOU EVER ASKED YOURSELF – AFTER WATCHING ONE OF THOSE OLD NEWSREELS FROM THE 30’S… WHAT YOU WOULD HAVE DONE IF YOU WERE IN NAZI GERMANY? Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:20 PM CDT
Martha O.: very scary Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:40 PM CDT
Michael A.: It is hard to say… Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:55 PM CDT
Megan A.: yes Xxx 25, 2015 8:39:59 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: HOW DID ALL OF THOSE FINE, CULTURED EUROPEANS GET CAUGHT UP IN THAT? WHY DID SO MANY PERSONS THINK THAT HITLER WAS A GOOD LEADER, AND LEADING THEM IN A RIGHTEOUS CAUSE? Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:03 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Yes. It is very hard to imagine. Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:03 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: Conformity? Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:16 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: brain washed Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:20 PM CDT
Mason L.: It’s easy to see how people will do whatever they can to avoid death, or conform Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:21 PM CDT
Megan A.: fear of being different Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:31 PM CDT
John W.: Your faith would be tested for sure Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:34 PM CDT
Julie B.: If you say enough it becomes true. Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:35 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: AND REALIZE THAT THESE ANCIENT CULTURES IN THE BIBLE WERE BRUTAL BEYOND OUR IMAGINATIONS SOMETIMES. EGYPTIAN MEANT “HUMAN”. EVERYONE ELSE WAS?…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:37 PM CDT
Michael A.: The “boiling frog” theory Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:45 PM CDT
Jillian O.: people always want someone to blame….they were upset about losing ww1 and needed someone to blame Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:45 PM CDT
Martha O.: scared to not follow the leader Xxx 25, 2015 8:40:46 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THEY SACRIFICED INFANTS, ACCORDING TO THE BIBLE (VERIFIED BY ARCHAELOGY) – NOT THE EGYTPIANS, BUT THE CANAANITIES…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:06 PM CDT
Jillian O.: animal Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:08 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: THESE CULTURES MADE REJECTING GODS LOVE, LIGHT AND LIFE A FINE ART…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:26 PM CDT
Susan R.: that ia terrible Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:30 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: horrible Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:36 PM CDT
Susan R.: sad Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:38 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: MANDATORY TEMPLE PROSTITUTION , DISREGARD FOR THE YOUNG, THE WEAK, WOMEN, THE POOR. CORRUPTION…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:45 PM CDT
Karen M.: that’s sad Xxx 25, 2015 8:41:48 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: GOD DESIRES ALL TO BE SAVED, BUT WHEN HE AND HIS PURPOSES ARE RESISTED…. THE MESSAGE HERE IS THAT WE MUST WATCH OUT. Xxx 25, 2015 8:42:12 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: so awful, and yet so similar to today Xxx 25, 2015 8:42:19 PM CDT
Martha O.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:42:24 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: HE WILL DEFEAT EVIL TO SAVE HIS OWN. SEE THIS VERSE: The wicked become a ransom for the righteous, and the unfaithful for the upright. (proverbs 21:18) Xxx 25, 2015 8:42:29 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: NOTE ISAIAH 43:4: 4 Because you are precious in my eyes, and honored, and I love you, I give men in return for you, peoples in exchange for your life. Xxx 25, 2015 8:42:42 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: …FOR THEY WERE CAUGHT UP IN SATAN’S TRAIN… THEY WERE CAUGHT UP IN THE REBELLION… THE HIGH TREASON AGAINST THE KING…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:43:08 PM CDT
Mason L.: Like a failied coup d’etat Xxx 25, 2015 8:43:24 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: STILL THE MESSAGE OF THE BIBLE WOULD BE THAT IF WE HAVE NOT BEGUN TO TRUST, FEAR AND LOVE HIM, WE TOO ARE IN THE SAME BOAT AS THE DEVIL….AND WE KNOW WHAT THE PENALTY FOR HIGH TREASON IS… Xxx 25, 2015 8:43:35 PM CDT
Susan R.: * Xxx 25, 2015 8:44:11 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: BUT, WHAT DO THE SCRIPTURES SAY? THIS: … HERE IS OUR LIFE PRESERVOR: JESUS, THE INNOCENT ONE, BECOMES THE WICKED ONE – TAKING ALL OF OUR EVIL IN AND ON HIMSELF… AND PAYS THE PRICE. Xxx 25, 2015 8:44:11 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: FOR US. HE *BECOMES SIN* FOR US. THE LAMB OF GOD. THE PASSOVER LAMB. SO THAT WE MIGHT HAVE FORGIVENESS, LIFE AND SALVATION… Xxx 25, 2015 8:44:36 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: AND WITH THAT I WILL CLOSE… ITS CLOSE TO 8:45… Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:01 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: SOME WEEKS I GO A FEW MINTUES OVER, BUT NOT TONIGHT… Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:13 PM CDT
Karen M.: you make things so much easier to understand 🙂 thanks! Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:21 PM CDT
Miranda Y.: * Thank you! Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:28 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: I’LL STICK AROUND – FEEEL FREE TO GO…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:29 PM CDT
Susan R.: thank you. good nifght everyone Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:30 PM CDT
Josephine H.: Thank you! Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:30 PM CDT
Martha O.: Thank you for your info, it makes more sense when you explained it 🙂 Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:32 PM CDT
Julie B.: Thanks, goodnight! Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:32 PM CDT
Jennifer C.: ok thanks. have a good night Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:32 PM CDT
[Jennifer C. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:35 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: good night Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:35 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: LOOKING FORWARD TO YOUR JOURALS Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:36 PM CDT
Anita Z.: Thank you Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:36 PM CDT
[Susan R. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:37 PM CDT
[Julie B. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:39 PM CDT
John W.: Thanks for your time. Can’t tell you how much this is helping me to understand Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:39 PM CDT
[Anita Z. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:40 PM CDT
[Megan A. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:42 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: MAKE SURE YOU DON’T FORGET Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:42 PM CDT
Rebecca S.: have a good week! Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:43 PM CDT
Michael A.: good night Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:44 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: GOOD NIGHT Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:45 PM CDT
[Miranda Y. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:46 PM CDT
[Rebecca S. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:47 PM CDT
Susan R.: Thank you. Thanks for translating Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:47 PM CDT
[Michael A. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:49 PM CDT
[John W. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:51 PM CDT
[Susan R. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:53 PM CDT
[Josephine H. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:55 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: when are journals due again Xxx 25, 2015 8:45:57 PM CDT
Martha O.: tomorrow Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:06 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: TOMORROW NIGHT AT MIDNGIHT Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:08 PM CDT
Cassidy W.: thank you Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:13 PM CDT
[Cassidy W. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:16 PM CDT
Martha O.: thx you Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:19 PM CDT
[Martha O. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:21 PM CDT
[Karen M. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:25 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: YOU’RE WELCOME… Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:26 PM CDT
Jillian O.: quick question-in Exodus God “hardens Pharoah’s heart”….why is this? Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:27 PM CDT
[Mason L. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:46:46 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: JILLIAN – YOU WILL NOTE PHAROAH HARDENS HIS OWN HEART FIRST…. IT IS AT THAT POINT THAT GOD HARDENS HIS HEART AND USES HIM AS AN INSTRUCEMTN TO INCREASE GOD’S GLORY – BY GLORIOUSLY SAVING HIS PEOPLE…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:19 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: I THINK IT SAYS 2 OR 3 TIMES THAT PHAROAH HARDENED HIS OWN HEART FIRST…. Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:45 PM CDT
[Mason L. joined the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:45 PM CDT
Jillian O.: that’s what I thought….just wanted to clarify Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:46 PM CDT
[Mason L. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:49 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: OK – ANYTHING ELSE? Xxx 25, 2015 8:47:55 PM CDT
Jillian O.: Nope. Have a good night! Xxx 25, 2015 8:48:04 PM CDT
[Jillian O. left the session] Xxx 25, 2015 8:48:13 PM CDT
Nathan Rinne: GREAT ! YOU TO. Xxx 25, 2015 8:48:13 PM CDT

 
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Posted by on November 6, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

Micah Bournes – Thank God For Evolution

Really good stuff.  Clever, creative, and thought-provoking. Note accompanying the You Tube video:

…This video does not attempt to affirm or deny the validity of the scientific theory of evolution. Evolutionary language is used primarily as a poetic device to illustrate larger issues concerning human nature. Visit http://www.micahbournes.com for more thought provoking videos and poems. Also visit thejusticeconference.com

HT: Virtues in the Wasteland guys.

Bournes is not pronouncing, but I’ll pronounce a bit, utilizing a quote from Michael Hanby, who I think is correct in this assessment:

There is simply no such thing as a methodological naturalism that is not also an ontological naturalism, and ontological naturalism is, at bottom, a bad theology that does not know itself.” (italics mine ; note Hanby himself believes evolution occurred)

Absolute craziness?  More of my thoughts on the topic here.

 
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Posted by on November 2, 2015 in Uncategorized

 

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