• Welcome to Christian Forums
  1. Welcome to Christian Forums, a forum to discuss Christianity in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to be able to join in fellowship with Christians all over the world.

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

  2. The forums in the Christian Congregations category are now open only to Christian members. Please review our current Faith Groups list for information on which faith groups are considered to be Christian faiths. Christian members please remember to read the Statement of Purpose threads for each forum within Christian Congregations before posting in the forum.
  3. Please note there is a new rule regarding the posting of videos. It reads, "Post a summary of the videos you post . An exception can be made for music videos.". Unless you are simply sharing music, please post a summary, or the gist, of the video you wish to share.
  4. There have been some changes in the Life Stages section involving the following forums: Roaring 20s, Terrific Thirties, Fabulous Forties, and Golden Eagles. They are changed to Gen Z, Millennials, Gen X, and Golden Eagles will have a slight change.
  5. CF Staff, Angels and Ambassadors; ask that you join us in praying for the world in this difficult time, asking our Holy Father to stop the spread of the virus, and for healing of all affected.
  6. We are no longer allowing posts or threads that deny the existence of Covid-19. Members have lost loved ones to this virus and are grieving. As a Christian site, we do not need to add to the pain of the loss by allowing posts that deny the existence of the virus that killed their loved one. Future post denying the Covid-19 existence, calling it a hoax, will be addressed via the warning system.

The Elephant in the Bible (Video and Discussion)

Discussion in 'Discipleship: Following Jesus' started by John Helpher, Jan 10, 2021.

  1. Michael Collum

    Michael Collum Everything began with a voice, use yours Supporter

    +5,299
    Canada
    Christian Seeker
    Married
    Not really. My grammar was fine. It just appears that the premise of logic or theologic we are examining things from is contrary - so what I say just doesn't make sense.
     
  2. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    Right. Paul had more trouble with the church at Corinth than he did any of the other churches. The context is that the members of the church thought Paul wasn't carrying his weight. He wasn't doing the same kind of physical labor that they were doing. He would just show up, tell them all what to do, eat their food, and then move on again to the next church. It sounds like they had developed a grudge against him, like he was the moocher, taking their food and drink and all he offered in return was criticism.

    Here, he is saying, yeah, they do owe him something, though you can see in the way he communicated it, Paul was very concerned about being seen as abusing this power. It's similar to the dilemma the apostles found themselves in, in Acts 6:2-4 where Peter essentially says, "We're the leaders; why are we serving tables? We need to delegate this job to someone else so that we can more clearly focus on spiritual leadership".

    That's the situation Paul found himself in. He tried very hard to "work with his own hands" so that no one could accuse him of being a moocher but eventually he realized that not only was he not able to keep up with the demands of leading several churches while doing so, but that he wasn't properly teaching the Corinthians how to respect his contributions to their spiritual welfare.

    In 2 Corinthians 12:13 he address this issue one last time. Look carefully at what he says, "For what is it wherein ye were inferior to other churches, except it be that I myself was not burdensome to you? forgive me this wrong."

    This is why he decided to take up tent making with Priscilla and Aquila; he wanted to show the Corinthians that he would not be a financial burden on them, and he recognized that he was wrong for thinking he had to do it this way. You can see from the record in Acts 18 that he was in Corinth when this happened. Notice in verse 5 when Timothy and Silas arrived he was "pressed in the spirit" and started preaching the gospel again. He was embarrassed that two of his disciples had come to find him busy making tents for money instead of preaching the gospel. He had realized just how foolish it was to try so hard to convince the Corinthians that he really wasn't a mooch.

    In conclusion, Paul made a mistake. We should not exploit that mistake as justification for ignoring Jesus. Let us just say, for argument, that Paul didn't think he had made a mistake, that he did think it was okay to sometimes demand payment for his love. So what? Paul isn't the savior. He is not the messiah. He is not the one who will save us.

    Follow Jesus. Paul himself recognized this when he said, "If I, or an angel from Heaven, preach any other gospel than Jesus, let me be accursed" (Galatians 1:8). He knew that he was not infallible and did not want anyone using his mistakes to justify behavior contrary to what Jesus taught.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2021
  3. ~Cassia~

    ~Cassia~ pondering the things of God Supporter

    +11,314
    Canada
    Christian
    Private
    That’s another way of looking at it.
    We have reached different conclusions to say the same thing, I’m sure. But there are always different paths to take when looking from a corporal view and another from a discipleship with Jesus path, which is the context of this forum.
     
  4. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    I don't know what this means. I posted a video which made a point that Christians today largely ignore Jesus' teachings about money and materialism. You posted a circumstance from Paul which contradicted what Jesus said about not using our time to chase money (i.e. since Paul made tents for a brief time, and Paul is found in the Bible, then we can also work for money).

    I spent a fair bit of time going through the text to show how Paul made a mistake, and that this mistake should not be used to contradict Jesus. Now you're talking about different paths in a way which doesn't at all address my comments.

    Yes, discipleship is the context of this forum. When he said, "follow me" his disciples forsook all their stuff and quit their jobs to follow him. That is the example of discipleship we see in the record.
     
  5. ~Cassia~

    ~Cassia~ pondering the things of God Supporter

    +11,314
    Canada
    Christian
    Private
    No problem. The aspect from the video is according to the administration of organized religion as a blanket statement. My pov was more from a relational individual view, that is what the NC is about. Where Christ is so are we.
     
  6. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    Alright well, that's essentially the "God knows my heart" argument. It goes like this, "Yeah, God told some people to obey him, but God knows I am an exception". It presumes that, for some reason, you are above the standards that not only Jesus' followers held themselves too, but Jesus himself.

    I mean, imagine when Jesus told the adulterous woman to go and sin no more she replies with, "Nah, I'mma keep doin it. God knows my heart. I have a unique, individual relationship with him". Jesus said, "If you love me, you will obey me". No amount of "in my heart" will cancel that.
     
  7. ~Cassia~

    ~Cassia~ pondering the things of God Supporter

    +11,314
    Canada
    Christian
    Private
    No it’s more : He who loves his wife loves himself for no man ever hates his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, as Christ does the Church because we are members of His body. For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one flesh.” type of relationship. That doesn’t depend on division but that which the sword of truth provides. Two becoming one, in the term alone, within Christ, leaves no room for blanket statements. Which is your cookie cutter argument.
     
  8. MMXX

    MMXX Jesus Loves You

    +1,123
    United States
    Christian
    Single
    When I asked you about obedience, you said it was a matter of being willing, which is a matter of the heart.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  9. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married
    This helps me to understand a bit more of your position. So let's see where we agree.

    -work is good and necessary
    -Sharing is good and necessary.
    -work may involve more than just direct evangelizing, but may involve working with your hands.

    Your main objections seems to be that people ask for money for work?

    If you could please give your take on this Scripture so I can understand where you are coming from.

    II Thessalonians 3:6 But we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you withdraw from every brother who walks disorderly and not according to the tradition which he received from us. 7 For you yourselves know how you ought to follow us, for we were not disorderly among you; 8 nor did we eat anyone’s bread free of charge, but worked with labor and toil night and day, that we might not be a burden to any of you, 9 not because we do not have authority, but to make ourselves an example of how you should follow us.

    10 For even when we were with you, we commanded you this: If anyone will not work, neither shall he eat. 11 For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. 12 Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread.

    Was Paul sinning by paying for his food?


    Why did he want people to eat their own bread, rather than receiving from others?
     
  10. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    They don't ask. They demand. It's not a request. It's a requirement. If you don't get paid, you don't work. When you ask, you're prepared to take no for an answer. But with payment, you're not; if they don't pay, they don't get the service or goods. Can you see how you've diminished this aspect of working for money in the way you've phrased the sentence, to make it sound more innocent? It's subtle, but it is there. That is the problem with working for money; it's not about helping others or sharing. It's about getting paid. The number one reason people give for justifying this attitude is, food and clothing, the most basic necessities. But, this is exactly the issue Jesus addressed in Matthew 6:24-34. Don't let worry about food and clothing stop you from stepping out in faith. Either you believe him, or you don't.

    The problem is not with the money itself, but with the motivation. The payment could be anything and it would still fall into the same problematic category. That's why Jesus used the word mammon; it means money and the things money can buy, which means even bartering would be wrong. It's an issue of motivation. God looks on the heart; why we behave the way we do.

    First, I'd like to make it clear that Paul is not the savior. He is not the boss. He is not the master. Jesus is. This is why he said, "If I or and angel from Heaven preach any other gospel, let me be accursed".

    Secondly, we all have a bias of some kind, which colors the way we view any given issue. A sincere desire to recognize that we have such biases is what will help us to see past them even if it takes time. It is inherent in what it means to have a bias that it is not easy to recognize it when it is there. That is why sincerity is so important.

    Look again at the verses you quoted; Paul does not say anything about payments. Yet, that's how you interpret it. Why?

    The context is made clear in verse 11, but you do not see it because, from the start, you reject the idea that these are Christian believers who are living and working together; a body of servants who have already forsaken all and share all things in common. See Acts 2:44-45 and Acts 4:32-37.

    Try to imagine it from this context, and consider again what Paul is telling them:
    " For we hear that there are some who walk among you in a disorderly manner, not working at all, but are busybodies. Now those who are such we command and exhort through our Lord Jesus Christ that they work in quietness and eat their own bread."

    Have you ever heard the word "moocher"? It's someone who takes advantage of the kindness of others; a lazy person who expects others to take care of him. That's what Paul was addressing. People were coming into the church thinking, "wow, everyone shares everything? Cool, make me a sandwich. I'll be resting on the hammock outside".

    Yes, love and sharing, but not exploitation and laziness. If you wanted to eat in the church, you need to work in the church. If not, fine; you're free to hang out, but you'll need to eat your own food. Clearly, this rule was designed to weed out those lazy trouble makers who weren't really interested in working for God. Paul wasn't telling them that they have a responsibility to make a profit from one another.

    Can you see that?
     
  11. MMXX

    MMXX Jesus Loves You

    +1,123
    United States
    Christian
    Single
    I interpret Matthew 6:24 as Jesus is saying to not make the pursuit of riches (possessions) the main pursuit in life. For people of the world their career and what they own, their level of material success, is what defines them. I don't think Jesus is saying "don't work for money". He's simply saying don't put money ahead of or in place of God, which would be a form of idolatry.

    I interpret Matthew 6:25-34 as what Jesus is saying is to not to have anxiety over money, food and clothing. He says not to be anxious (have anxiety over, worry about, fret over) six times in the passage. So Jesus is commanding us not to worry about it. Worrying over things displays a lack of faith. But He said to them, “Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?” Matthew 8:26

    Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. 1 Timothy 6:17

    Put your hope in God, not riches.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2021
  12. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married
    So what did he mean by eat your own bread?
     
  13. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married
    I see that he says he didn't eat free of charge, but worked with labor and toil night and day, so as to not be a burden to them.

    Not eating free of charge, but laboring so as to not be a burden is not just the language of sharing as you suggest.
     
  14. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    Sorry, Tall73, but I've given you a lot of explanation, including the answer to this issue. I'm gonna need more effort from you if you want more effort from me. Look again at my post.
     
  15. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married

    I read your post. It didn't explain it.
     
  16. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married
    No one else thinks it was a mistake. Just you. And we don't see a contradiction between Paul and Jesus. But I do know quite a few who reject Paul because they don't care for what he says.
     
  17. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    As you say.
     
  18. John Helpher

    John Helpher John 3:16 Supporter

    +391
    United States
    Christian
    Celibate
    Perhaps the most important question in all reality is, why? Why did Jesus say the things he said? The only way to really answer that question is sincerity.

    Sincerity is perhaps the most rare thing in all reality. You can't buy it. You can't coerce it. You can't fake it. You can't manufacture it.

    It's a reaction between your spirit and the Holy Spirit. That is the key to interpreting the teachings of Jesus. This is why Jesus said, "No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him:"

    He's talking about the Holy Spirit, reaching out to our spirit; an attempt at communication. Sometimes we accept, and sometimes we reject. The teachings of Jesus are the ultimate expression of the Holy Spirit attempting to reach out to us. Jesus said so, "The words I speak to you are spirit and life". What spirit do you think he was referring to?

    His teachings are, in fact, the most naked, sincere, and humble attempt by God to reach us. It is perhaps the single greatest act of humility on his part since creating beings who could say no to him. Imagine exposing the most intimate, private, vulnerable part of your spirit to those who have the freedom to treat it as though it was just a convenience for their own selfishness. It's incredible. It's unbelievable, and yet, that is exactly what Jesus is. He is the ultimate miracle. And he asks, "Why do you call me, 'Lord', but do not obey me"?

    In John 16 he says, "I have many things to tell you, but you cannot bear them now". I had never even thought of this verse, until someone in a Bible study commented on it; she said there was so much that Jesus must have wanted to tell them, much like his comments to Nicodemus, "How can you believe me about Heavenly things if you will not believe me about earthly things"? It must have been so frustrating for him to have so much wisdom and yet he had to hold back because of our stubbornness.

    "This people draw near to me with their mouth, but their heart is far from me". You can hear the frustration in his voice. Perhaps the saddest declaration of this frustration was when he said, "When I return, will there be any faith left on the Earth"? What a sad commentary for we who remain.
     
  19. MMXX

    MMXX Jesus Loves You

    +1,123
    United States
    Christian
    Single
    I believe that if you reject Paul, you in turn are rejecting Jesus, because Jesus chose Paul to teach His gospel. The only reason why we know what Jesus taught, is because of what the apostles wrote. Jesus speaks to us through His apostles.
     
  20. tall73

    tall73 Sophia7's husband Supporter

    +4,294
    Christian
    Married
    I don't see that he ever addressed why those folks still have houses instead of selling them.
     
Loading...