Author Topic: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.  (Read 6800 times)

George Rahn

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #105 on: March 15, 2021, 06:13:33 PM »
Rev. Stoffregen,

While God did not give an explicit command, He DID only create ONE woman for Adam.  Aren't you the one who tells us, when you are bashing those mean old conservatives, that actions speak louder than words?  And if God had wanted to make 37 women for Adam out his ribs, He could have given Adam 37 more ribs.  Right?  Or are you trying to box God in?


So, why didn't the ancient Israelites believe that monogamy was God's plan?


Sin had already come into the world.

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #106 on: March 16, 2021, 12:04:10 AM »
Rev. Stoffregen,

While God did not give an explicit command, He DID only create ONE woman for Adam.  Aren't you the one who tells us, when you are bashing those mean old conservatives, that actions speak louder than words?  And if God had wanted to make 37 women for Adam out his ribs, He could have given Adam 37 more ribs.  Right?  Or are you trying to box God in?


So, why didn't the ancient Israelites believe that monogamy was God's plan?


Sin had already come into the world.


The first humans in the Garden of Eden, without sin in the world, didn't fair too well.


Jews do not look at Genesis 3 as "the Fall." In their view, humans are constantly exposed to evil impulses, יֶצֶר הָרָע yetzer hara, they also have impulses for good, יֵצֶר הַטּוֹב yetzer hatov. The first humans listened to their evil impulses rather than the good ones. Seeking to obey God's commands can help curb the evil impulses and promote the good impulse.


There are no indications that the Israelites saw polygyny or concubinage as evil. Producing children from wives, slaves, and concubines was seen as normal. Abraham did it (Gen 25:6). Half of the 12 tribes came from slave women. Judges 19 tells a story of a Levite (a priest) and his concubine.) David (2 Sam 5:13) and Solomon (1 Kgs 11:3) seem to boast of the great number of women they had as wives and concubines.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Steven W Bohler

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #107 on: March 16, 2021, 09:08:29 AM »
Rev. Stoffregen,

I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.

Charles Austin

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #108 on: March 16, 2021, 09:29:58 AM »
Pastor Bohler writes:
I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.
I comment:
Jews do not "deny the Messiah." They just do not believe (maybe yet) that Jesus is the One. And saying that something "stares" people "straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament" is not helpful when dealing with Christian/Jewish topics or approaches to scripture. It is unfair to simply dismiss the views of those reading the ancient scriptures and taking them as God's word for a lot longer than we Christians.
Language and attitudes like that - so simply expressed, without nuance - can be the foundation for much difficulty.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Now in Minnesota. Just finished six great days in a beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, with a bunch of friends and relatives. About 18 of us, and the young folks did all the cooking.

Steven W Bohler

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #109 on: March 16, 2021, 09:49:24 AM »
Pastor Bohler writes:
I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.
I comment:
Jews do not "deny the Messiah." They just do not believe (maybe yet) that Jesus is the One. And saying that something "stares" people "straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament" is not helpful when dealing with Christian/Jewish topics or approaches to scripture. It is unfair to simply dismiss the views of those reading the ancient scriptures and taking them as God's word for a lot longer than we Christians.
Language and attitudes like that - so simply expressed, without nuance - can be the foundation for much difficulty.

So, if someone says "Jesus is not the Messiah", he is not denying the Messiah?  Well, you are the wordsmith. 

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #110 on: March 16, 2021, 11:09:54 AM »
Pastor Bohler writes:
I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.
I comment:
Jews do not "deny the Messiah." They just do not believe (maybe yet) that Jesus is the One. And saying that something "stares" people "straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament" is not helpful when dealing with Christian/Jewish topics or approaches to scripture. It is unfair to simply dismiss the views of those reading the ancient scriptures and taking them as God's word for a lot longer than we Christians.
Language and attitudes like that - so simply expressed, without nuance - can be the foundation for much difficulty.

So, if someone says "Jesus is not the Messiah", he is not denying the Messiah?  Well, you are the wordsmith.
Steven, there is an ambiguity in your post that you may not recognize. The vocable "Messiah" can be used to refer to the concept of a Messiah or someone who has been identified as the Messiah. Many Jews do not reject the teaching that God will send a Messiah, so they do not deny the Messiah per se. But they do reject the identification of Jesus of Nazareth as the one whom God sent as the Messiah.


Over time, several groups of Jews, especially among the Hasidic Jews have identified leaders who they thought could be the promised Messiah.
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Charles Austin

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #111 on: March 16, 2021, 11:13:36 AM »
A Jew is not denying the messiah, or that there is/will be a messiah. The Jew says Jesus is not the one. What is so plain to you is not plain to the world. And maybe we Christians haven’t done such a good job at making it clear.
We have dismissed Jews as “Christ killers” and those who just refuse and deny Jesus, nothing else.
Retired ELCA pastor. Iowa born. Now in Minnesota. Just finished six great days in a beach house on North Carolina’s Outer Banks, with a bunch of friends and relatives. About 18 of us, and the young folks did all the cooking.

Steven W Bohler

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #112 on: March 16, 2021, 11:19:24 AM »
Pastor Bohler writes:
I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.
I comment:
Jews do not "deny the Messiah." They just do not believe (maybe yet) that Jesus is the One. And saying that something "stares" people "straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament" is not helpful when dealing with Christian/Jewish topics or approaches to scripture. It is unfair to simply dismiss the views of those reading the ancient scriptures and taking them as God's word for a lot longer than we Christians.
Language and attitudes like that - so simply expressed, without nuance - can be the foundation for much difficulty.

So, if someone says "Jesus is not the Messiah", he is not denying the Messiah?  Well, you are the wordsmith.
Steven, there is an ambiguity in your post that you may not recognize. The vocable "Messiah" can be used to refer to the concept of a Messiah or someone who has been identified as the Messiah. Many Jews do not reject the teaching that God will send a Messiah, so they do not deny the Messiah per se. But they do reject the identification of Jesus of Nazareth as the one whom God sent as the Messiah.


Over time, several groups of Jews, especially among the Hasidic Jews have identified leaders who they thought could be the promised Messiah.

Yes, I am aware of that.  However, those Hasidic Jews (and other Jews who would identify someone else as the Messiah or even as a messiah) are wrong.  There is only one Messiah: Jesus Christ, the Son of God.  And they all deny that.  It doesn't matter (as Rev. Austin wants to claim and as Rev. Stoffregen will undoubtedly bring up -- "but what about Cyrus?") that they believe in a messiah or a singular Messiah who is still to come (or who has already come in the person of this or that Hasidic rabbi): they all deny that Jesus is the Messiah, the Savior.  And whether or not that is plain to them is irrelevant to that fact.

Dan Fienen

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #113 on: March 16, 2021, 11:29:47 AM »
Steven, I agree that Jesus of Nazareth was and is the one and only sent by God as the Messiah. However, the way that language is used, the vocable "Messiah" has a broader usage than just that of Jesus. We cannot dictate how others will use that term and cannot successfully demand that it only refer to Jesus.


Language is a tool for communication and usage is ultimately determined by those who use it. The imposition of usage rules has historically had limited success. Like it or not, in common usage, "Messiah" is not used exclusively to refer to Jesus and communication is hindered if we do not recognize that. There are better ways to communicate our beliefs than by promulgating idiosyncratic rules of usage.
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Brian Stoffregen

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #114 on: March 16, 2021, 01:26:04 PM »
Rev. Stoffregen,

I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.


Judaism does not deny the Messiah. Based on their reading of their scriptures, Jesus could not be the Messiah because the messianic kingdom has not yet arrived. As one Jewish NT scholar wrote (as I remember it): We are looking for the kingdom, not a king. We are looking for salvation for the world, not a savior. This writer, Pinchas Lapide, believes that Jesus was crucified and raised from the dead.


Christians recognize this about Jesus; so we claim that he is the Messiah and that he has to return to bring in the messianic kingdom.


I also note that I have looked up every verse that includes "messiah" in the Hebrew Scriptures. Those verses do not point to Jesus and what he did. Isaiah's "suffering servant," who is never called "messiah," is much closer to the ministry of Jesus. He fulfills those verses; not those that actually talk about the "messiah."


William Holladay's A Concise Hebrew and Aramaic Lexicon of the Old Testament includes the following under מָשִׁיחַ: "N. B. “Messiah” as eschatological savior-figure not in O.T."



"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #115 on: March 16, 2021, 01:31:54 PM »
Pastor Bohler writes:
I don't know that we should be looking to those who deny the Messiah -- even when He stares them straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament -- for a proper understanding of other teachings of the Bible, such as marriage.
I comment:
Jews do not "deny the Messiah." They just do not believe (maybe yet) that Jesus is the One. And saying that something "stares" people "straight in the face, in passage after passage of the Old Testament" is not helpful when dealing with Christian/Jewish topics or approaches to scripture. It is unfair to simply dismiss the views of those reading the ancient scriptures and taking them as God's word for a lot longer than we Christians.
Language and attitudes like that - so simply expressed, without nuance - can be the foundation for much difficulty.

So, if someone says "Jesus is not the Messiah", he is not denying the Messiah?  Well, you are the wordsmith.
Steven, there is an ambiguity in your post that you may not recognize. The vocable "Messiah" can be used to refer to the concept of a Messiah or someone who has been identified as the Messiah. Many Jews do not reject the teaching that God will send a Messiah, so they do not deny the Messiah per se. But they do reject the identification of Jesus of Nazareth as the one whom God sent as the Messiah.


Over time, several groups of Jews, especially among the Hasidic Jews have identified leaders who they thought could be the promised Messiah.

Yes, I am aware of that.  However, those Hasidic Jews (and other Jews who would identify someone else as the Messiah or even as a messiah) are wrong.  There is only one Messiah: Jesus Christ, the Son of God.  And they all deny that.  It doesn't matter (as Rev. Austin wants to claim and as Rev. Stoffregen will undoubtedly bring up -- "but what about Cyrus?") that they believe in a messiah or a singular Messiah who is still to come (or who has already come in the person of this or that Hasidic rabbi): they all deny that Jesus is the Messiah, the Savior.  And whether or not that is plain to them is irrelevant to that fact.


If you would actually read the Old Testament - and look at where the noun/adjective, מִשִׁיח, and the verb, מָשַׁח are used, you would see that they nearly always refer to particular persons, Saul, David, and successors, Cyrus the Persian (Is 45:1), priests, patriarchs.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #116 on: March 16, 2021, 01:37:35 PM »
Steven, I agree that Jesus of Nazareth was and is the one and only sent by God as the Messiah. However, the way that language is used, the vocable "Messiah" has a broader usage than just that of Jesus. We cannot dictate how others will use that term and cannot successfully demand that it only refer to Jesus.


Language is a tool for communication and usage is ultimately determined by those who use it. The imposition of usage rules has historically had limited success. Like it or not, in common usage, "Messiah" is not used exclusively to refer to Jesus and communication is hindered if we do not recognize that. There are better ways to communicate our beliefs than by promulgating idiosyncratic rules of usage.


We agree! Going even further, the way the Old Testament uses the word "messiah," often translated in the 37 verses where it occurs, "anointed one," has little resemblance to Jesus. I just did a search on BibleGateway for "messiah" in the ESV. It is never used in the OT and only occurs twice in the NT in that translation.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #117 on: March 16, 2021, 01:54:51 PM »
Steven, I agree that Jesus of Nazareth was and is the one and only sent by God as the Messiah. However, the way that language is used, the vocable "Messiah" has a broader usage than just that of Jesus. We cannot dictate how others will use that term and cannot successfully demand that it only refer to Jesus.


Language is a tool for communication and usage is ultimately determined by those who use it. The imposition of usage rules has historically had limited success. Like it or not, in common usage, "Messiah" is not used exclusively to refer to Jesus and communication is hindered if we do not recognize that. There are better ways to communicate our beliefs than by promulgating idiosyncratic rules of usage.


We agree! Going even further, the way the Old Testament uses the word "messiah," often translated in the 37 verses where it occurs, "anointed one," has little resemblance to Jesus. I just did a search on BibleGateway for "messiah" in the ESV. It is never used in the OT and only occurs twice in the NT in that translation.
Brian, do you personally believe Jesus is the Messiah who was foretold in the OT Scriptures? Why or why not?

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #118 on: March 16, 2021, 03:40:52 PM »
Rev. Stoffregen,

While God did not give an explicit command, He DID only create ONE woman for Adam.  Aren't you the one who tells us, when you are bashing those mean old conservatives, that actions speak louder than words?  And if God had wanted to make 37 women for Adam out his ribs, He could have given Adam 37 more ribs.  Right?  Or are you trying to box God in?


So, why didn't the ancient Israelites believe that monogamy was God's plan?


Sin had already come into the world.


The first humans in the Garden of Eden, without sin in the world, didn't fair too well.

I don’t read in Genesis 1 and 2 (prior to Fall) that the first human(s) didn’t fare well.  Going “chronologically” and journalistically through the narrative in Genesis, there was a time when the pre-fall human enjoyed complete and even response with God.  No duplicity arrives until Genesis 3. 

Brian Stoffregen

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Re: When “homosexuals” entered the Bible.
« Reply #119 on: March 16, 2021, 04:19:51 PM »
Steven, I agree that Jesus of Nazareth was and is the one and only sent by God as the Messiah. However, the way that language is used, the vocable "Messiah" has a broader usage than just that of Jesus. We cannot dictate how others will use that term and cannot successfully demand that it only refer to Jesus.


Language is a tool for communication and usage is ultimately determined by those who use it. The imposition of usage rules has historically had limited success. Like it or not, in common usage, "Messiah" is not used exclusively to refer to Jesus and communication is hindered if we do not recognize that. There are better ways to communicate our beliefs than by promulgating idiosyncratic rules of usage.


We agree! Going even further, the way the Old Testament uses the word "messiah," often translated in the 37 verses where it occurs, "anointed one," has little resemblance to Jesus. I just did a search on BibleGateway for "messiah" in the ESV. It is never used in the OT and only occurs twice in the NT in that translation.
Brian, do you personally believe Jesus is the Messiah who was foretold in the OT Scriptures? Why or why not?


The word, "messiah," was not used in the OT Scriptures for the the one who was coming. It is nearly always used for someone who was present back in history, like the priests and kings who were "anointed". As I noted, the ESV never translates מִשִׁיח with "messiah." How could there be a foretelling of a future "messiah," when the word isn't even used in the translation?


There are other passages, like the suffering servant of Isaiah, that fit the coming of Jesus much better than any of the "messiah" passages.
"The church … had made us like ill-taught piano students; we play our songs, but we never really hear them, because our main concern is not to make music, but but to avoid some flub that will get us in dutch." [Robert Capon, _Between Noon and Three_, p. 148]