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Messages - Mike Bennett

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976
Your Turn / Re: The Gospels -- Jesus Remembered
« on: August 03, 2007, 03:08:24 PM »
Where do I learn of such an astonishing thing as the faithfulness of God to unfaithful, sinful believers?  The craziest optimist couldn't make it up, and I can't rely on the witness of Scripture?
Read the gospel of Mark. Assumption one about reading scriptures: the people were expected to read through the entire book; not just pick and choose parts of it. Assumption two about reading scriptures: the people were expected to read it from start to finish, not jump around. So, read through the gospel and note especially how the disciples are characterized in this gospel.

Brian, I was reading books of the Bible at one sitting long before I ever heard your name.  Mark has been one of them, several times. So where, in Mark, if I can't rely on the trustworthiness of Scripture's accounts, do I get such a wild and crazy idea as resurrection of the dead?  The resurrection is what I was trying to find support for before the "faithfulness" red herring was dragged across the path and I followed it like a dedicated but stoopid bloodhound.  

Mike Bennett ???

977
Your Turn / Re: The Gospels -- Jesus Remembered
« on: August 02, 2007, 10:55:58 PM »
If I believe the reality of the resurrection but can't rely on the Scriptural resurrection accounts, what do I rely on? 
The faithfulness of God to unfaithful, sinful, believers.

Where do I learn of such an astonishing thing as the faithfulness of God to unfaithful, sinful believers?  The craziest optimist couldn't make it up, and I can't rely on the witness of Scripture?
 
 :(  Mike Bennett

978
Your Turn / Re: The Gospels -- Jesus Remembered
« on: August 02, 2007, 04:26:10 PM »
Are you saying you dont believe the Gospel writiers where inspired by God to give thier accounts?    Is Jesus' resurection simply a "common element"  in "just one person's experience of what happened".    So Scriptures do not declare what "really happened," .   WOW!! 
I return to my often asked question, did Mark 16:8 really happen as reported? Did the women say nothing to anyone?

Steven Tibbetts answered that question last week.  Most recently.  I believe his answer was "Not then."

Mike Bennett

979
Your Turn / Re: The Gospels -- Jesus Remembered
« on: August 02, 2007, 04:23:43 PM »
And specifically, where on earth would I come up with a crazy concept like "the resurrection" without the "resurrection appearance stories"   as they're recorded in Scripture?
The stories are based on true events. Details are likely to have been changed over the decades, or selectively remembered.

If I believe the reality of the resurrection but can't rely on the Scriptural resurrection accounts, what do I rely on? 

Mike Bennett

980
Your Turn / Re: The Gospels -- Jesus Remembered
« on: August 02, 2007, 12:12:06 PM »

You don't seem to catch the difference between believing that the resurrection really happened and that it is necessary for Christian faith; and that the resurrection appearance stories probably did not happen just as they are recorded in scriptures.

What is the difference?

How are you able to tell when you are reading "a story" and what is "the truth" on which one would base faith? Or is faith based in something else?

And specifically, where on earth would I come up with a crazy concept like "the resurrection" without the "resurrection appearance stories"   as they're recorded in Scripture?

Mike Bennett

981
Forum Blogs / Re: Johnson Goes Ballistic
« on: August 02, 2007, 12:07:26 PM »


Tonight at dinner there were eight or nine pastors sitting at our table. The discussion across the table turned to the creeds. One pastor was explaining how at their church, they don't make the confirmands memorize the Apostles' Creed. "Once in a while we pull out the Apostles' or Nicene Creeds, on high holy days. But we won't use it for confirmation Sunday." I could feel my blood pressure rising. Why is this? I asked. The reply was that the creeds have a hole in them big enough to drive a truck through (by which was meant that "there's nothing in there about Jesus's life, it just jumps from birth to death"), and what they do instead is have the confirmands (and maybe others, I was feeling a little dizzy and didn't quite follow it) "write their own creeds" which they then use in worship.

The "holes big enough to drive a truck through" resonated a bit with me, but in a different way.  A couple of years ago, after one of the major seasons (Easter I think) when we'd confessed the Nicene Creed every Sunday for several weeks instead of the Apostles Creed, it occurred to me that the Apostles Creed is so sketchy in places, and the Nicene Creed so meaty, that it's worth the small effort to memorize the Nicene Creed (which I'd never done before - very complicated, don't you know  ) for use in personal daily prayers and meditation instead of the Apostles Creed.  Does anybody know why the sketchier Apostles Creed has been the one used for catechesis?  

As for "writing my own creed," heaven forbid!  I still need to ponder on the Church's creed.

Mike Bennett

982
Your Turn / Re: Does It Really Matter?
« on: August 01, 2007, 12:32:08 PM »
But if there are Christians planning and leading the services, perhaps along with others, are not the services at least in some measure "Christian"?

And I have a later worry about the poster upstream who said at such a service he might "bow his head out of respect," but not pray. Watch out! Someone just might think that one who does that is actually praying, thereby prompting all kinds of charges and potential damage to one's career.

I was the one who said that.  And my career is in business, so not to worry.

I also take off my shoes at the front door of a house where the host/ess expects it.  Same sort of thing. 

Mike Bennett

983
Your Turn / Re: Does It Really Matter?
« on: July 31, 2007, 07:13:25 PM »
Mike Bennett writes:
I can say I'd be very uncomfortable with the notion of joining in any part of "worship" at, say, the unitarian fellowship.  I'd bow my head during prayer in courtesy, but would not pray.

I comment:
Let me get this straight. If I am surrounded (fully? partially? in the same room with?) those "others," God doesn't hear my prayers? How do they do that? Keep God from hearing my prayers in a place like that? Or if I think those "others" are not even praying to the "real" God, how is it that my prayers are unheard and useless?

Well, I assume we're talking here about praying *with*, for instance, the unitarians.  I could pray to the most Most Holy Triune God while I sat in the unitarian meeting, and I don't expect that there's anything on the walls or ceiling that would block my prayers from reaching God's ears.  But I could not in good conscience pray *with* them, because they are not praying to God;  they're praying to some other god.  Further, if I feigned to be praying with them, I would be committing a very unloving act to those who observed (not that anybody but me would be paying attention to me, but I'm playing the whole thing out here) and thought that I was fine with the unitarian god.  Because, frankly, I still hold the backward view that there is one way to the Father, and that's the Son.  And that anybody who is seeking another way to the Father, or whoever their god is, is eternally lost.  I won't add to anybody's case of the vapors by being explicit about the fate of the lost, but as I understand Scripture, it isn't pretty.

Mike Bennett

984
To the poll that has just appeared in the midst of this thread, I cast "none of the above."  Though of the choices offered, I'm probably closest to the six-day option.

pax, spt+

Still being in business, I'm better at following exam instructions than Steven, so I picked six days as the best answer available.

Mike Bennett

985
Your Turn / Re: Does It Really Matter?
« on: July 31, 2007, 06:10:07 PM »
Mike Bennett write (re being in synagogues):
 I honored the young woman featured in the first, grieved for the old man mourned in the second, and enthusiastically dis'ed Haman in the third, before going downstairs for very good holiday pastries.  But no Christian worship there. 

I comment:
I've been there, too. But I sneaked in some prayers to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (and Jesus). No, it wasn't "Christian worship," but neither was it nothing.

You and I know that the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the God of Jesus.  I quite agree that what's done in the synagogue isn't "nothing."  I think it's further from "nothing" than any non-Christian place of worship I know.  I'd overlooked that I heartily joined in the Psalms when I went to sit shiva (sp?) one evening for the old boy whose funeral I'd attended.  I expect that gets me on the wrong side of the line Pr McCain refers to (that's a speculation of fact, not a snide comment) but I can say I'd be very uncomfortable with the notion of joining in any part of "worship" at, say, the unitarian fellowship.  I'd bow my head during prayer in courtesy, but would not pray.  (Does that sound like a stubborn little kid or what?)

Mike Bennett

986
Forum Blogs / Re: Memorials Committee Tries to Avoid Trainwreck
« on: July 31, 2007, 06:02:29 PM »
The prospectus of Concordia Publishing House's twenty volume extension of the American Edition was a particularly big hit at the conference.

Say what?

And when will the Logos version be available?

Mike Bennett

987
Your Turn / Re: Does It Really Matter?
« on: July 31, 2007, 05:02:44 PM »
Mike Bennett writes:
In Christian worship we hear the Word and receive the Body and Blood of Christ. 

I comment:
Not always. Sometimes we just sing and pray. Sometimes we hear readings from scripture and readings from other things. Sometimes we just praise God. Sometimes we just stand around a tree, a campfire, a flagpole, a site of historical significance or an accident scene and do whatever people do at such times. And sometimes all the people around the tree, campfire, flagpole, site of historical significance or accident scene are not all Christian. Sometimes - (LC-MS-ers cover your ears!) - they aren't even all Lutheran.

Well, in the Daily Office we don't receive the Body and Blood - I'll give you that.  But we do hear the Word, sing Psalms, and pray to the Most Holy Trinity.  I've played in a woodwind ensemble in a unitarian assembly, and the morning's talk was thought-provoking but not Christian.  I've been in synagogues several times - for a Bat Mitzvah, a funeral, and (my favorite) Purim.  I honored the young woman featured in the first, grieved for the old man mourned in the second, and enthusiastically dis'ed Haman in the third, before going downstairs for very good holiday pastries.  But no Christian worship there.  

Mike Bennett

988
Your Turn / Re: Does It Really Matter?
« on: July 31, 2007, 04:21:59 PM »
Someone writes:
Pastor McCain...please clarify bullet C.  Are suggesting that we should not allow non-Christians to join us in worship?   Or, is this bullet centered along the lines of Christian's attending a non-Christian worship?

I ponder:
If a Christian attends and worships, isn't his or her worship Christian?

Hmm.  Trying to think along with you here.  In Christian worship we hear the Word and receive the Body and Blood of Christ.  In what non-Christian worship setting would a Christian expect to receive those things, so that (s)he could be said to have engaged in Christian worship? 

Mike Bennett

989
ELCA Churchwide Assembly 2007 / Re: Welcome to Chicago
« on: July 31, 2007, 03:36:05 PM »
To the ELCA folks out there - has a more complete schedule of the CWA been released yet?  I have looked on the ELCA website and only found the times for the plenary sessions, services, meals etc.   Is there anything more specific?  Thanks.
Pr. Ben Ball, St. Paul's Ev. Lutheran Church, Brookfield, IL

This might be what you're looking for, unless you've already been here:

http://www.elca.org/assembly/votingmatters/

Mike Bennett

990
LCMS Convention 2007 / Re: ELDoNA?
« on: July 31, 2007, 03:03:49 PM »
My favorite name was always "The Church of Christ".


"Disciples of Christ" is like unto it.

Did I ever mentions my ancestral church body?  I.e., the "American Carpatho-Russian Orthodox Greek Catholic Church (of the Eastern Rite)".


My little brother was charismated in your ancestral church body about 10 years ago.  I think they've shortened up the name a bit now. 

Mike Bennett

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