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Problems With Parables


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You'd better not persist with this, 'no contradictions in scripture' line, Ironhorse!

 

Nor should you persist with the, 'these are only minors details' line, either.

 

You should give proper value to our genuine concerns.

 

Our trust / mistrust of you is in the balance!

 

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From the article above:

 

"With one straightforward counter-question, Jesus skillfully points out that the claims of God and Caesar are mutually exclusive. If one's faith is in God, then God is owed everything; Caesar's claims are necessarily illegitimate, and he is therefore owed nothing. If, on the other hand, one's faith is in Caesar, God's claims are illegitimate, and Caesar is owed, at the very least, the coin which bears his image.

 

Jesus' counter-question simply invites His listeners to choose allegiances. Remarkably, He has escaped the trap through a clever rhetorical gambit; He has authoritatively refuted His opponents' hostile question by basing His answer in scripture, and yet, He never overtly answers the question originally posed to Him. No wonder that St. Matthew ends the Tribute Episode this way: "When they heard this they were amazed, and leaving him they went away."

 

 

I guess we can agree to disagree, because I don't see it this way.  The article is based on some form of apologetics, trying to make it seem like Jesus was against Rome, and against paying taxes to corrupt rulers.  But, the character, Jesus, clearly states to give the coin to caesar, and give to god what is god's.  I agree that he is basically using wit to dodge being arrested, but he agrees that taxes should be paid.  I'm curious why the son of god would fear being arrested in the first place (?).

 

Many people want to believe that Jesus' message agrees with their own opinions, and do whatever they can to project certain intentions onto the text.  I became a non-believer by stopping and reading the text for what it actually says, not what I wanted it to say.  A picture is worth a thousand words, and the image of beautiful Jesus was burned into my brain as a child.  When the words he spoke (like, for example how the people should have been killing their unruly children) didn't line up with the mental image I had in my mind, I would rationalise and make excuses for him.  Like "surely, he didn't mean that...  What he meant to say was..."  But, I don't see any evidence in the text that Jesus was sinless or blameless, or that he was any more of a good man than was David Koresh.  

 

There is always the excuse of the language translations that the apologists cite.  But, I have found that going back to the greek or hebrew doesn't change the meaning that much, if at all. It is just another one of those excuses that christian leaders throw around.  For anyone that wants to look up passages in different translations, I have found this to be the best resource: http://biblehub.com

 

 

Just for I am not projecting my views onto this passage; I am no libertarian and actually think some people should be paying MORE taxes. Pro and anti Roman sentiment varies throughout scripture. There is a delicate balance to be drawn for the story to be embraced by both Jews AND Gentiles. Matthew seems more Jewish.. Luke not so much. Variations of this story exist in each synoptic Gospel.

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Yes, that is one of the reasons. He could deal with controversial issues without sending up a red flag

to the authorities.

 

Also, He knew some of them really didn’t want to understand. He wanted only those to understand who “in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, keep it, and bring forth fruit with patience” ~Luke 8:15

 

“He that hath ears to hear, let him hear” ~Matthew 11:15

 

"Jesus answered him, I spake openly to the world; I ever taught in the synagogue, and in the temple, whither the Jews always resort; and in secret have I said nothing."  John 18:20

 

Damn, TinPony!  Don't you ever get tired of the contradictions in your holy book?

 

 

 

 

What contradiction?

 

He did speak his words openly.

 

 

Are you just playing dumb?  Some of us have stooped to the level of spoon feeding you and you apparently are pretending not to see.  Is this just a game to you?

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From the article above:

 

"With one straightforward counter-question, Jesus skillfully points out that the claims of God and Caesar are mutually exclusive. If one's faith is in God, then God is owed everything; Caesar's claims are necessarily illegitimate, and he is therefore owed nothing. If, on the other hand, one's faith is in Caesar, God's claims are illegitimate, and Caesar is owed, at the very least, the coin which bears his image.

 

Jesus' counter-question simply invites His listeners to choose allegiances. Remarkably, He has escaped the trap through a clever rhetorical gambit; He has authoritatively refuted His opponents' hostile question by basing His answer in scripture, and yet, He never overtly answers the question originally posed to Him. No wonder that St. Matthew ends the Tribute Episode this way: "When they heard this they were amazed, and leaving him they went away."

 

I guess we can agree to disagree, because I don't see it this way.  The article is based on some form of apologetics, trying to make it seem like Jesus was against Rome, and against paying taxes to corrupt rulers.  But, the character, Jesus, clearly states to give the coin to caesar, and give to god what is god's.  I agree that he is basically using wit to dodge being arrested, but he agrees that taxes should be paid.  I'm curious why the son of god would fear being arrested in the first place (?).

 

Many people want to believe that Jesus' message agrees with their own opinions, and do whatever they can to project certain intentions onto the text.  I became a non-believer by stopping and reading the text for what it actually says, not what I wanted it to say.  A picture is worth a thousand words, and the image of beautiful Jesus was burned into my brain as a child.  When the words he spoke (like, for example how the people should have been killing their unruly children) didn't line up with the mental image I had in my mind, I would rationalise and make excuses for him.  Like "surely, he didn't mean that...  What he meant to say was..."  But, I don't see any evidence in the text that Jesus was sinless or blameless, or that he was any more of a good man than was David Koresh.  

 

There is always the excuse of the language translations that the apologists cite.  But, I have found that going back to the greek or hebrew doesn't change the meaning that much, if at all. It is just another one of those excuses that christian leaders throw around.  For anyone that wants to look up passages in different translations, I have found this to be the best resource: http://biblehub.com

 

 

Just for I am not projecting my views onto this passage; I am no libertarian and actually think some people should be paying MORE taxes. Pro and anti Roman sentiment varies throughout scripture. There is a delicate balance to be drawn for the story to be embraced by both Jews AND Gentiles. Matthew seems more Jewish.. Luke not so much. Variations of this story exist in each synoptic Gospel.

 

 

I was skeptical of your linked article at first because of the political nature of the source. I think the author of that article did a good job explaining the context of the story and the political climate in a Roman occupied area. He exposes the gospels for being seditious political propaganda of the time and not some divine work we should be worshiping in the present...even if that's not really the point he was trying to make. 

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Ironhorse,

 

MyMistake has eloquently and concisely expressed our growing sense of irritation with you.

 

If I give you the benefit of the doubt...

 

(by assuming that you aren't playing dumb, aren't playing a game with us and aren't pretending to not understand us)

 

...you'll repay the hope I'm now putting in you with... what?

 

 

 

Thanks,

 

BAA

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The parables are actually pointing to very deep and powerfully abstract spiritual concepts that can't really be conveyed properly with plain speech.
Jesus certainly could have use plain language and he did explain one of the parables at one point, but that would have lost the subtle message of what he was trying to convey. He's trying to get people to think for themselves and try to figure it out, because that's the only way any of us can grow. 

It's like the difference being told about music and hearing music. You could tell people in great detail how much music moves you, but you know they will never truly get what you're talking about unless they too start listening to music and find stuff that moves them too. 

Jesus knew that anybody who was truly serious about walking a spiritual path instead of just paying lip service would be able to figure out what he was talking about. In his time the Jews weren't just being oppressed by the Romans, they were being oppressed by the clergy who acted similarly to our irritating fat-cat Evangelists like the Hams and Craig and Robertson, corrupted uber-religious politicians like Palin and Santorum, and corrupted wealthy merchants (corporations like Hobby Lobby in 2014). 

I don't think the character of Jesus was a bad guy anymore. Once I finally got enough pieces together through years of studying not just the Bible outside of the influence of Christianity, and studied many different religions along with philosophy and history, I realized that what Jesus said has been repeated many times by many different people. There is no evidence that Jesus ever existed. Maybe he was just a pseudonym for many persecuted wise men and women who couldn't openly express their philosophies due to dangerously deadly oppression they were living under. 

Regardless, when you finally really GET what "Jesus" was talking about, you realize how astronomically far off base mainstream Christianity as a religion actually is. It's been designed to train people to be focused so hard on the religion, they never get a chance to grow spiritually and figure out that churches aren't actually necessary. It keeps the money coming in. Jesus was telling this same thing to people back in his day, that's what the whole Matthew 6:6 quote about praying in closets means and why he overturned the money changer's tables. 

That's why Jesus was conspired against and crucified...he messed with the money. He knew it was a matter of time before they came for him. 

The Bible is just a collection of metaphorical stories. Myths have long been an important tool for teaching spiritual concepts and they don't have to be literal to have truth. There isn't anything in the Bible that an atheist couldn't figure out on their own through another method. Jesus didn't have to have been real or be God himself manifest for the lessons he taught to be relevant. Nobody is going to some literal Hell for not being Christian. Christianity as a mainstream religion is pretty much just a rehash of the Pharisees from Jesus's time. 

That's my two pennies for the pot, anyway. 

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You'd better not persist with this, 'no contradictions in scripture' line, Ironhorse!

 

Nor should you persist with the, 'these are only minors details' line, either.

 

You should give proper value to our genuine concerns.

 

Our trust / mistrust of you is in the balance!

 

 

Have I stated there are no contradictions in the Bible? I will go back and check, but I

think I was using the word in reference to a particular verse.

 

I have said that most of the contradictions in scripture are minor and

do not derail the story or message.

 

I'm doing my best to keep track of the questions and your concerns.

You just gotta give me time. I'm not instant coffee :)

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So what parts are true and what are made up?

 

Not a hot or tittle shall blah blah...

 

Cursed be anyone who adds anything or takes away anything from God's word.

 

It's one or the other

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I'm doing my best to keep track of the questions and your concerns.

You just gotta give me time. I'm not instant coffee smile.png

 

People have given you sufficient time, during which you found time to make multiple posts on multiple threads trying to change the subject when it got too uncomfortable for you.  It's not a lack of time that's your problem.  It's a lack of willingness to discuss your views.

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So what parts are true and what are made up?

 

Not a hot or tittle shall blah blah...

 

Cursed be anyone who adds anything or takes away anything from God's word.

 

It's one or the other

 

I'm a believer in Christ, I believe that is the place to start

in reading and understanding more of the scriptures.

 

I have always liked this quote:

 

“It ain't the parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it's the parts that I do understand.”

~Mark Twain

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Oh Tinpony, not bright enough to realise Twain was criticising god/jesus in that quote.

 

 

Oh Tinpony, not bright enough to realise Twain was criticising god/jesus in that quote.

 

I'm familiar with Mark Twain and his views on the Bible.

 

“The Bible has noble poetry in it... and some good morals and a wealth of obscenity, and upwards of a thousand lies.”

~Mark Twain

 

I like the quote I posted from him because I think he did expres a truth.

 

Unbelievers may not understand many parts of the Bible, but it's not

very difficult to understand the message of Jesus. That's the part, I think, gets troublesome.

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Oh Tinpony, not bright enough to realise Twain was criticising god/jesus in that quote.

 

 

Oh Tinpony, not bright enough to realise Twain was criticising god/jesus in that quote.

 

I'm familiar with Mark Twain and his views on the Bible.

 

“The Bible has noble poetry in it... and some good morals and a wealth of obscenity, and upwards of a thousand lies.”

~Mark Twain

 

I like the quote I posted from him because I think he did expres a truth.

 

Unbelievers may not understand many parts of the Bible, but it's not

very difficult to understand the message of Jesus. That's the part, I think, gets troublesome.

 

More insults, to our intellect this time.  Your behaviour is not very "Christian". 

 

Re Twain, second bible-maligning quote.  Got any more?

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