Sunday, April 20, 2014

He is risen! Hallelujah!

He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay. And go quickly, and tell his disciples that he is risen from the dead; and, behold, he goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you. And they departed quickly from the sepulchre with fear and great joy; and did run to bring his disciples word. And as they went to tell his disciples, behold, Jesus met them, saying, All hail. And they came and held him by the feet, and worshipped him. Then said Jesus unto them, Be not afraid: go tell my brethren that they go into Galilee, and there shall they see me (Mt 28:1-10).
God died on Friday, and the world ended. Yesterday, He was lying in His tomb; all hope and promise of the coming kingdom buried with Him. Today, He is risen: God has irrupted into the present, and now we look forward to the eschatological fulfilment in the transformation of the world order, the ultimate redemption of the believer, and the final judgement.

No matter how hostile, antithetical or 'secularised' the world becomes, nothing will change this immutable truth. Jesus is alive. The resurrection of Christ is the "first fruits" of the full harvest - the resurrection of all believers. The risen Lord is the "firstborn from among the dead". The power of sin has been conquered, but the consequence - physical death - remains, awaiting a future consummation. The Spirit is a "guarantee" of our ultimate redemption.

The resurrection of Christ split history in two; it divided BC from AD. It isn't politic to say so in this age of religious equality, but Moses, Mohammed, Buddha and guru Nanak are all dead and in their tombs. Only Jesus is alive. Of course, to the superior intellects and enlightened ones, this is but a fairytale, a fantasy, an hallucination, a delusion.

But if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and our faith is in vain. The Christian faith stands or falls with Christ's resurrection. His death on the cross is historical fact brought about by man. His resurrection is an eschatological event brought about by God. Just as God delivered the Israelites from slavery in Egypt and gave them the Promised Land, so He delivered mankind from sin and death that we might have eternal life. The blood of the first Passover which spared Israel’s firstborn foreshadows the second Passover and the Lamb who died that we might be born again.

To have mourned at the cross, despaired at the death, wept at the graveside, and then to have met the Risen Christ must have been an inexpressible joy. That joy is now ours. And yet the world is still shrouded in night: we suffer, grieve and feel unbearable pain. As the Archbishop of Canterbury reminds us today in his Easter sermon:
"With Mary there are so many that weep. In Syria mothers cry for their children and husbands. In Ukraine neighbours cry because the future is precarious and dangerous. In Rwanda tears are still shed each day as the horror of genocide is remembered. In this country, even as the economy improves there is weeping in broken families, in people ashamed to seek help from food banks, or frightened by debt. Asylum seekers weep with loneliness and missing far away families. Mary continues to weep across the world.

"But listen, hear the announcement... The one who was dead, is now alive! The one whose body had been a corpse, lying motionless in the grave, inert, lifeless, lying flat on the stone ledge of the borrowed tomb – he now stands before Mary, speaking her name. This day he speaks everybody’s name to engage them with the news that he is alive...

"Someone wrote recently ‘Joy might be a greater scandal than evil, suffering or death’. This is what I have been moved by in Christian communities around the world who face the most devastating of conditions. Their certainty that Jesus is alive enables them to face all horrors with joy. Not happiness, but joy. Joy can exist alongside mental illness, depression, bereavement, fear, because the joy of Christ comes from knowing that nothing and no one less than God has the last word.

"I remember sitting in a room with the Bishop who had come over from Pakistan soon after the attack in September on a church in Peshawar. I asked how Christians were coping with the fear that such attacks brought, and wondered if there had been anyone in church the week following the attack. ‘Oh yes’ the bishop replied, ‘there were three times as many people the next week’. Such action is made possible only by the resurrection. The persecuted church flourishes because of the resurrection. I think of women who I met earlier this year who have survived unspeakable sexual violence, yet who lift their arms in prayer and praise to God. I think of teenagers I met in Luton who have hope and joy, in lives that were dominated by self hatred and harm. This has only been made possible because Jesus is alive.

"The announcement that Jesus is alive changes everything; not simplistically or even instantly do circumstances and situations change. But it changes us. It gives us hope where we were in despair, faith where we were lost, light where we were in darkness, joy where we were entirely in sorrow."
He is risen! Hallelujah!

His Grace wishes all of his readers and communicants a blessed Easter.

77 Comments:

Blogger David Hussell said...

Your Grace,

My most sincere thanks for a truly excellent, thoughtful series over this special period. Your work here is most worthwhile.

He is Risen Indeed !

Hallelujah !

20 April 2014 at 08:35  
Blogger Dr Robert Warde said...

Your Grace,
I can only echo off David Hussell

"My most sincere thanks for a truly excellent, thoughtful series over this special period".
he has risen he has risen in deed.

20 April 2014 at 09:51  
Blogger Martin said...

Of course, the blood had to be spread on the lintel & posts or death would come. Unless you are under the blood you are condemned.

Presumably that was the full text of the ABC's message. It seems somewhat lacking in proclaiming the gospel of God's mercy on sinners.

BTW why did you use Latin in the post @ 07:56, it is the language of the schismatic church of Rome.

20 April 2014 at 10:08  
Blogger Cressida de Nova said...

I wish everyone a very Happy and Holy Easter.

A special thank you to His Grace for his reflective and inspirational posts during Holy Week.

20 April 2014 at 10:16  
Blogger Albert said...

Happy Easter, one and all.

20 April 2014 at 11:06  
Blogger IanCad said...

Greetings to you YG, and to all your flock on this great and glorious day.

Thank you so much for a wonderful series throughout this solemn week.

Would it be improper for me to suggest that all who can and have not, need to place a little something in the collection plate?

20 April 2014 at 11:11  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Happy Easter everybody!

20 April 2014 at 11:32  
Blogger Len said...

He is risen! Hallelujah!

The mixing of the Jewish ' passover 'and the pagan 'Easter' when Christianity became 'the state religion' of Rome has caused much confusion in the Christian and the secular World.
It was the intent to rid Christianity of its 'Jewishness' which led to the deliberate attempt to avoid Passover altogether.
Jesus is' the passover lamb' which God supplied as the means of redeeming the sin of the World and this should not be forgotten amongst the worship of the pagan Goddess 'Ishtar'.
The Jews had to smear the blood of the lamb over their doorpost and lintel to obtain protection so the angel of death would 'passover' them.

It is the blood of Jesus Christ which ensures that the Judgement of God will 'passover' those who accept Jesus Christ as their Saviour.
Everything in the bible is there for a reason and and we cannot add or remove parts of scripture without it being detrimental to the meaning as a whole.

20 April 2014 at 11:42  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

A Blessed and Holy day, indeed.

Peace be to all this day.

E S Blofeld

20 April 2014 at 11:42  
Blogger meema said...



Your Grace,

I just wanted to wish for you and your family, and all who appreciate your work here, to have a blessed Holy Day.

Jesus paid it all, all to Him I owe.
:)a

http://bagsallpacked.blogspot.com/2014/04/jesus-paid-it-all.html

20 April 2014 at 11:43  
Blogger E.xtra S.ensory Blofeld + Tiddles said...

Len

"The mixing of the Jewish ' passover 'and the pagan 'Easter' when Christianity became 'the state religion' of Rome has caused much confusion in the Christian and the secular World." Indeed Len.

The very row that Polycarp had with Rome, when he visited and saw its paganism and influence!!

Blofeld

20 April 2014 at 12:29  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

Happy Easter to all, and thanks to His Grace for all his reflections, insights and instigations of debate and discussion, and his patience with our ways when we have wandered off topic like lost sheep.

Ah, Happy Resurrection Day to those who like Len might prefer it.

But the early churches were built on Holy sites, so that the new building superseded the old superstitions; that was the idea and mostly it has worked so I think it is good if we insist on holding what we have superimposed upon, rather than giving ground to acquisitive pagans!! Just a thought!

20 April 2014 at 12:57  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Happy Easter to All.

Saying such, it occurs to me that perhaps I should have confined the greeting to fellow believers. It is much easier to say "Happy Christmas" to unbelievers, without giving offence, than to say, "Happy Easter."

Christmas, after all requires one to believe that Christ was born. Easter is a tougher prospect altogether.

There is always the solution of liberal theology. Though Christ did not, of course, physically rise from the dead he is still alive to us in his inspiring example, and is existentially present when we think of him.

No wonder liberal theology finds itself confronted with so many empty pews.

20 April 2014 at 13:04  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Christus Vincit.
Christus Regnat.
Christus Imperat.

20 April 2014 at 13:16  
Blogger non mouse said...

Happy Easter Your Grace: to you and all.

20 April 2014 at 13:51  
Blogger Sister Tiberia said...

To all of you

Gold bless you, and God keep you, and I wish you and yours joy this blessed Eastertide.

20 April 2014 at 13:51  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Martin @ 10:08

Latin features in the story of the crucifixion.

Doesn't that give it some validity at this time of year?

20 April 2014 at 14:10  
Blogger Avi Barzel said...

Happy Easter, Your Grace and communicants.

20 April 2014 at 14:26  
Blogger Integrity said...

He is risen. A blessed Easter Your Grace.

I don't understand the AofC words in the first sentence. Mary continues to weep across the world.
Is he being RC and suggesting that Mary is spiritually alive?
A sad sermon for a former evangelical.

20 April 2014 at 14:29  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Martin:

I don't know to what this refers. But I also deliberately chose to use Latin and so I will respond.

[W]hy did you use Latin in the post @ 07:56, it is the language of the schismatic church of Rome.

Not everything that Rome touches is hopelessly corrupted. Not everything that Rome does is wrong. We are free to receive that which is noble and reject that which is base.

Latin is a beautiful language. It has been used to express the truths of God and thereby it is sanctified by those who would so use it. I used it for three reasons:

1. Ad fontes. The source material I chose was originally written in Latin.

2. I wanted to silently direct the reader to specific music that used the Latin wording.

3. The use of Latin establishes a context remote from common ordinary experience. And the Passion was anything but common and ordinary.

The evil that men do proceeds from the human heart. The language by which that evil may be expressed is of no consequence. To suggest otherwise is legalism.

Post tenebras lux

carl

20 April 2014 at 14:50  
Blogger non mouse said...

Martin - until grammar schools were abolished (circa '70s) all well-educated English people learned Latin (and Greek, if they were lucky). This was in the tradition of those who brought us the Bible and, ultimately, a sophisticated system of literacy. Latin, consequently, provides an excellent basis for understanding scientific and medical terminology, law, grammar on a european scale, and the general English vocabulary. Many English words are related to Latin: either from our common Indo-European origins, through the classical education system, or even second-hand though the language imposed by the norman frogules.

Certainly, the Reformation allowed us to shake off the yoke of RC-ism and its vice-ridden socio-economic control. However, we merely reformed its mis-treatment of the Judaeo-Christian and Greek learning it transmitted, and we continued to develop English in that light.

We did not throw out the baby with the bath-water.


20 April 2014 at 15:12  
Blogger Louise K said...

Happy Easter!!!

20 April 2014 at 15:19  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

There in the ground his body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious day
Up from the grave he rose again

And as he stands in victory
Sin's curse has lost its grip on me
For he is mine and I am his
Saved by the precious boood of Christ.

Stuart Towneend

20 April 2014 at 15:26  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

Kindest regards Avi. I shall raise a glass of Jersey Apple Brandy to you and yours.

20 April 2014 at 15:30  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

Martin said...

[. . .] it is the language of the schismatic church of Rome.

20 April 2014 10:08


Not sure whether this means that Martin woke up with a hangover this Sunday morning which has left him, quite understandably, in a foul temper, or whether, on the contrary, he is feeling jolly and in the mood for wisecracks.

One way or the other, a Happy Easter to you, Martin, and to Your Grace and to all communicants.

20 April 2014 at 15:30  
Blogger Dreadnaught said...

Rubbing the Easter Bunny up the wrong way YG?
http://hurryupharry.org/

20 April 2014 at 15:37  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Beatus et Felix Pascha vos Martini

*Chuckle*

20 April 2014 at 16:15  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Luther's '95 Theses' were written in Latin. So were Calvin's 'Institutes'.

I read Virgil in Latin. Marvellous language.

20 April 2014 at 16:17  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Well, with all this Latin flying about the blogsphere I can see I may have to improve my meagre grasp of it - two years of it, 11 to 13 years, from a most irascible Latin teacher convinced me to head towards the sciences. But even that fraction has allowed me to understand many of the inscriptions and what have you, that you come across here and there.

But now its a bit of an itch that I may scratch again.

20 April 2014 at 17:07  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...


David Hussell

If you're looking for somewhere to start, you might like to try
here.

Regards
Brian


20 April 2014 at 18:03  
Blogger Roy said...

Integrity said...

I don't understand the AofC words in the first sentence. Mary continues to weep across the world.
Is he being RC and suggesting that Mary is spiritually alive?
A sad sermon for a former evangelical.


I don't like the suggestion that the Archbishop of Canterbury is not an evangelical. As for his remarks about Mary, I think they were somewhat metaphorical in nature. I don't think the AofC would claim to know what is in Mary's mind now, but I do think that the Archbishop believes that Mary has eternal life.

If she does not, then what is the point of Christianity?

20 April 2014 at 18:32  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Uncle Brian @ 18.03

Thank you Brian, I just had a peek and it's all there !

I'll store it for future use.

20 April 2014 at 18:53  
Blogger IanCad said...

I have to agree with Integrity @ 14:29.

Perhaps it was just an unfortunate choice of words, for surely, no Protestant can believe that Mary has the ability to hear and act upon our prayers.

20 April 2014 at 19:00  
Blogger Integrity said...

Thank you Ian. Exactly what I meant.

20 April 2014 at 19:05  
Blogger non mouse said...

Mr. Hussell - for a selection of 'secular' texts among the classics - in Latin, Greek, and English Tufts is also useful.

They provide all kinds of links and references to aid the scholar! Oxford and Cambridge colleges offer similar fare - it does no harm to explore the range, once you home in on your topic :)

Btw: I'm not sure which bit of Latin engendered this discussion; but no matter... :))

20 April 2014 at 20:14  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Archbishop Welby: "Mary continues to weep across the world."

IanCad: " ... no Protestant can believe that Mary has the ability to hear and act upon our prayers."

Define 'Protestant'? Define hear and act upon our prayer?

Was Mary's body assumed into Heaven at the end of her earthly life? If so, she is physically and spiritually in God's presence.

Heinrich Bullinger, a notable protestant theologian, wrote: " ... we believe that the Virgin Mary, Begetter of God, the most pure bed and temple of the Holy Spirit, that is, her most holy body, was carried to heaven by angels."

Some churches of the Anglican Communion and many Anglo-Catholics observe the feast day as the Assumption of Mary.

20 April 2014 at 20:32  
Blogger MFH said...

Mary wept. Read the context of the bible passage. Not Mary mother of Jesus.
AoC was speaking of those like Mary today.
Just wish he would preach about sin ans salvation. The salvation Mary knew, and we can know too.
He is Risen.

20 April 2014 at 20:40  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Happy Jack

Some whom you refer to as Protestant I think we might refer to as Anglo-Catholic.

It is not part of normal Evangelical Anglicanism. No references to be foun in those great Wesley hymns, or the Olney Hymns or Graham Kendrick to the Assumption of the B.V.M - you get the drift?

20 April 2014 at 20:43  
Blogger David Hussell said...

non-mouse @ 20.14

Thank you too, for your helpful link, also filed and stored !

20 April 2014 at 21:26  
Blogger IanCad said...

Happy Jack,

Just back from a late family gathering and so to bed. A quick, provisional response will have to suffuice. Bear in mind that I have also read both MFH and Lucy Mullen's comments. They offer some correction to my prior post.

"Protestant"

One who rejects the doctrine that the dead are able to hear and respond to those who are alive and on earth.

Who also recognizes no other conduit between himself and his creator.

That should address the question of The Assumption of Mary.

If Bullinger is a Protestant I'm Donald Duck.

Anglo-Catholics are Catholics.

20 April 2014 at 21:47  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Lucy M, Happy Jack gets the drift - sort of.

The term Evangelical seems very broad. Can someone be an Anglo-Catholic-Evangelical?

20 April 2014 at 21:49  
Blogger The Explorer said...

On this Mary issue. "He now stands before Mary speaking her name."

Without wanting to get Da-Vinci codish, could that be Mary Magdalene?

As in her thinking initially it was the gardener?

20 April 2014 at 22:07  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Donald Duck

*chuckle*

Heinrich Bullinger (18 July 1504 – 17 September 1575) most certainly was a Protestant. He was a Swiss reformer, the successor of Zwingli as head of the Zurich church.

Before its suspension, the Anglican - Roman Catholic International Commission
issued a joint statement on Mary for discussion. It is not an authoritative declaration by the Roman Catholic Church or by the Anglican Communion.

It said this:

"We affirm together@

" - that the teaching about Mary in the two definitions of the Assumption and the Immaculate Conception, understood within the biblical pattern of the economy of hope and grace, can be said to be consonant with the teaching of the Scriptures and the ancient common traditions;

" - that Mary has a continuing ministry which serves the ministry of Christ, our unique mediator, that Mary and the saints pray for the whole Church and that the practice of asking Mary and the saints to pray for us is not communion-dividing."


Clearly some Protestants disagree with you.

20 April 2014 at 22:08  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

Jack my lad.

Since the subject won't go away, and as I personally (and at painful cost) rejected the RC faith I was raised in, here is my ninepence worth.

The 'protest' in Protestant is about the emphatic rejection of the unbiblical accretions, omissions, additions of Rome. I became a Protestant after a spiritual awakening at 19 started me reading the bible for myself. I reached a stage where I could see that a plain reading of Scripture and the distinctive doctrines and practices of the Roman church were incompatible, so I had to choose one or the other. I started attending a Gospel Hall where I found like kinded people. That is my Protestantism.

Praying to Mary the mother of Jesus is just plain unbiblical full stop. Why do it? Jesus not a sympathetic enough mediator? Mary's last recorded words (John 2:5) are 'Whatever he (Jesus) tells you, do it'. If obedience is the highest form of respect the we honour Mary by obeying Jesus.

I regularly avoid being drawn into papist versus proddy argy bargies here. They tend towards sterile tedium, I've nothing original to say and I'm happy to avoid judging and to think the best of RCs.

But I am still very much a Protestant, although I prefer the term bible believing Christian....my goodness, this could go on for centuries....oh lumme, -it already has....

PS Welby probably using poetic metaphor re Mary's tears. I think we could be charitable enough to let him? His heart clearlycis in the right place here at least

20 April 2014 at 22:28  
Blogger William Lewis said...

He is risen! Hallelujah!

A belated, blessed Easter to you too Your Grace.

20 April 2014 at 22:31  
Blogger Rambling Steve Appleseed said...

PS re Jack at 22.08

If this joint Anglican-Catholic group made the statement you attribute to them, then good job its disbanded.

The doctrines of the Immaculate Conception and the Assumption are wholly extra biblical and entirely unnecessary to the biblical salvation narrative.

On this of all days we should glorify the risen, ascended and triumphant Christ. Prefer to avoid sectarian dissent but as Paul wrote to the Corinthians (paraphrase) where there is error there must needs be dissent from the true.

Happy Easter and good night.

20 April 2014 at 22:43  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Rambling Steve, Happy Jack was not the one to raise the subject and he understands your position.

However, if you read this joint statement you may see things differently. It explains how these beliefs are drawn from and consistent with Scripture.

A Happy and blessed Easter to you too.

21 April 2014 at 00:00  
Blogger The Explorer said...

To repeat re Integrity"s question @ 14:29.

No, Welby is not being RC. He is referring to the Mary Magdalene episode in John's Gospel.

21 April 2014 at 07:18  
Blogger William Lewis said...

I share the Archbishop's reaction to the extraordinary faith shown by those who have suffered evil within the persecuted church and without it. Extraordinary faith driven, ultimately, from an extraordinary event. It is humbling, awe-inspiring and faith-giving.

He is risen! Hallelujah!

21 April 2014 at 08:01  
Blogger Len said...

I think some of the comments here highlight the dangers of 'compromise' within the church.
Can we 'Christianize' pagan rituals and practices?. And indeed should we attempt to do so.?.
If the church sticks rigidly to the Word of God it WILL be persecuted.

So whats wrong with a little compromise for the sake of peace?. Perhaps we can give a little here and we can get the persecutors off our back and make ourselves more acceptable to the World.What harm would that do?.

This is the dilemma the church faces do we let the pagans into the Church AND bring their pagan practices with them or do we remain true to the Word of God and declare these pagan practices an abomination to God.
The Church need to either come 'out of the World' or to let the World set the agenda that the church follows.
Time to decide.


21 April 2014 at 09:22  
Blogger bluedog said...

Wonderful meditations during Holy Week, Your Grace, thank you.

A belated Happy Easter too.

21 April 2014 at 09:36  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

@ Len

I understand your concerns, but am also concerned at the way pagans & New Age types are constantly using the media to say the jesus myth (in their eyes) is really about the sun rising and setting and Christmas and Easter are really theirs. I spy an agenda and am unwilling to work with it and lose our holidays to their claims. There is a lot of mistruth told, and varying dates given for Jesus birth and crucifixion and I think there is an attempt ongoing to remove landmarks and snaffle territory. I don't want in any way to aid or abet it in a search for a total purity of dating and imagery that may be elusive.

Take the matter of imagery. Are we to let go of St. Peter's cross because Satanists use the upside down cross in their rituals. Should we cede this image to them? Or should we say the egg can only be pagan? There are those who make a living trying to find earlier pagan imagery which they then say Christians had copied, like Jordan Maxwell.

There are a limited number of images available and I think there is an occult New Age attitude towards imagery whereby the image of itself has power, and the CHristian one where the image has power only when the person's will accepts and internally processes the image. So the icthus image has power because we see ourselves as the fishes, and catching fish as the Christian life. So if s.o. goes on about Dagon and the Fisher King preceding Christ it is irrelevant to us and we can say whatever ancient pagan use of this image you have dug up it is irrelevant to us.

Some of those who try to uncover the pagan roots of Christian symbolism are ex-Satanists with an occultic attitude to symbols, and maybe not even as ex as they might seem, so I am very wary of them!!

Despite this some imagery I agree, like Hallowe'en is hopelessly compromised.

21 April 2014 at 12:57  
Blogger IanCad said...

Now, Now, Happy Jack. My statement, Re: Bullinger, was made in response to your quotation from his writings.

His, is not now, a generally accepted Protestant position.

He was an early reformer. Light displaced darkness slowly in those troubled times.

To paraphrase Wylie: "Man did not awake from eight hundred years of slumber with all his senses fully alert."

DD

21 April 2014 at 13:51  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

*chuckle*

Happy Jack is entitled to call you Donald Duck for a few days more. Being avian isn't too bad; just keep away from ole Blowers!

21 April 2014 at 19:37  
Blogger The Explorer said...

HJ:

You don't have to be avian to have old Blowers after you with both barrels.

21 April 2014 at 20:25  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

True, Explorer but nothing gives ole Blowers greater pleasure than a good duck hunt! Jack pays attention to his posts though rarely engages in theological disagreements.

Talking of which:

Donald D and Rambling Steve, Happy Jack has been doing some research.

He discovered this article on Anglican Mainstream by Michael Nazir-Ali, who was on the 'ARCIC' group that produced the statement on Mary. Jack found it very interesting in highlighting different traditions and cultural approaches to reading scripture.

This (bible believing) Bishop (retired) of the Anglican Communion once said: "I am Catholic and evangelical".

According to Wiki: "He is a bitter critic of protestants and considers protestant teachings against the basic commandments of Bible."

21 April 2014 at 21:06  
Blogger IanCad said...

An interesting link HJ, far too much for a speed read.

I will look at it again tomorrow.
Surely your last paragraph can't be true. Can it?

I mean, we're talking about the Bishop of Rochester here.
No, No, No; Impossible.

DDD

21 April 2014 at 22:33  
Blogger Len said...

Lucy Mullen.
We are entering a phase in the church when deception is rife.
If we do not have a love of the Truth (God`s Word} we open ourselves up to all sorts of deceiving spirits.
I do not think we can apply Christian concepts over pagan beliefs[ like a blanket] and by so doing transform them.
Acts 19
Paul in Ephesus 'A number who had practiced sorcery brought their scrolls together and burned them publicly. When they calculated the value of the scrolls, the total came to fifty thousand drachmas'.

All world religious beliefs not founded on the absolute truths of the Bible have descended from Mystery Babylon.

21 April 2014 at 22:59  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Ah Len, Happy Jack says these " ... absolute truths of the Bible" have been studied and debated for 2000 years by minds greater than yours and mine. And look at the divergence of theologies and unresolved issues.

Is anyone capable of fully comprehending and putting into human words their depth and mystery?

21 April 2014 at 23:50  
Blogger IanCad said...

Happy Jack,

Up to your usual tricks again.

Making things tough for me before going to work!

What can I say?

The Anglican Church casts a wide net, and fine. Something for everyone; unless you probe a little deeper.

I will state that his conclusion, is, IMHO, entirely incompatible with Protestant teaching.

As to the "Wiki" quote: There is some question as to its veracity. If indeed it is true then a trip across the Tiber should be encouraged.

Let me add that I was initially shocked. Shocked!

Then I remembered Robert Runcie.

22 April 2014 at 08:16  
Blogger Len said...

Happy Jack.
In answer to your question( 21 April 2014 23:50)
'The Holy Spirit'.
Which Jesus promised to lead us into all Truth.

22 April 2014 at 09:20  
Blogger Len said...

To add further to my comments on" why should Christians observe pagan festivals instead of God`s"(why I should be asking this question at all to Christians I find somewhat surreal!)

WHEN DID GOD AUTHORISE THE CHURCH TO CHANGE THE DATE OF HIS FESTIVALS?
And further;
'He shall speak great words against the Most High - Sermones quasi Deus loquetur; "He shall speak as if he were God." So St. Jerome quotes from Symmachus. To none can this apply so well or so fully as to the popes of Rome.

And think to change times and laws; - Appointing fasts and feasts; canonizing persons whom he chooses to call saints; granting pardons and indulgences for sins; instituting new modes of worship utterly unknown to the Christian Church; new articles of faith; new rules of practice; and reversing, with pleasure, the laws both of God and man.

22 April 2014 at 09:28  
Blogger Martin said...

TE

Latin features in the story of the crucifixion.

Doesn't that give it some validity at this time of year?


In the writing of a pagan Roman official? That hardly makes it the language of Zion.

22 April 2014 at 10:12  
Blogger Martin said...

Carl

Not everything that Rome touches is hopelessly corrupted. Not everything that Rome does is wrong. We are free to receive that which is noble and reject that which is base.

Actually it seems to me that Rome has corrupted the gospel & hence is irredeemably wrong.

Latin is a beautiful language. It has been used to express the truths of God and thereby it is sanctified by those who would so use it. I used it for three reasons:

It has also been used to hide the truths of the gospel.

1. Ad fontes. The source material I chose was originally written in Latin.

2. I wanted to silently direct the reader to specific music that used the Latin wording.


So would it not have been better to have illuminate the minds of your readers?

3. The use of Latin establishes a context remote from common ordinary experience. And the Passion was anything but common and ordinary.

But is not the crucifixion & resurrection of the Lord something that needs to be understandable by all, not shrouded in some mystical language?

The evil that men do proceeds from the human heart. The language by which that evil may be expressed is of no consequence. To suggest otherwise is legalism.

But if the language is not understandable by the hearer what is the point? Did not Paul require a translation when ecstatic speech was uttered that all might understand?

22 April 2014 at 10:14  
Blogger Martin said...

BNM

Martin - until grammar schools were abolished (circa '70s) all well-educated English people learned Latin (and Greek, if they were lucky). This was in the tradition of those who brought us the Bible and, ultimately, a sophisticated system of literacy. Latin, consequently, provides an excellent basis for understanding scientific and medical terminology, law, grammar on a european scale, and the general English vocabulary. Many English words are related to Latin: either from our common Indo-European origins, through the classical education system, or even second-hand though the language imposed by the norman frogules.

And I learnt Latin, but badly.

Certainly, the Reformation allowed us to shake off the yoke of RC-ism and its vice-ridden socio-economic control. However, we merely reformed its mis-treatment of the Judaeo-Christian and Greek learning it transmitted, and we continued to develop English in that light.

We did not throw out the baby with the bath-water.


But should not the hearer understand, is that not one of the greater tenets of the Reformation?

22 April 2014 at 10:15  
Blogger Martin said...

Brian

Not sure whether this means that Martin woke up with a hangover this Sunday morning which has left him, quite understandably, in a foul temper, or whether, on the contrary, he is feeling jolly and in the mood for wisecracks.

Neither in a foul nor jolly mood.

22 April 2014 at 10:16  
Blogger Martin said...

Jack

Beatus et Felix Pascha vos Martini

And I hope you had a blessed & happy Easter too. ;-)

22 April 2014 at 10:19  
Blogger Len said...

H J, Should we take Jesus Christs statements as true because if not this has huge implications?.

Jesus said,
'But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.'
(John 16:13)

Now the catholic response(usually) is.'Knowing this first, that no prophecy of scripture is of private interpretation'(2 Peter 1:20)

This verse above cannot be saying that scripture cannot be understood because such a statement would involve a logical dilemma: it is illogical to try and prove by scripture that scripture cannot be understood. As Paul says ' All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,'(2 Timothy 3:16)




22 April 2014 at 10:23  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Martin

Actually it seems to me that Rome has corrupted the gospel & hence is irredeemably wrong.

Is Rome then wrong about the Trinitarian nature of God? Should I take exacto blade to Hynmal and remove every instance of "O Come O Come Emmanuel." Rome is wrong about the Gospel. It is not therefore wrong about everything.

[Latin] has also been used to hide the truths of the gospel.

English has been used to hide the truths of the Gospel. That is not a fault with the language. That is a fault with the men who use the language.

So would it not have been better to have illuminate the minds of your readers?

Actually I took account of the readership and trusted that it would understand and recognize what I offered. This blog is not a general readership weblog. The population is self-selected and will not be intimidated by a little Latin. Besides, this is the internet. It would take all of five seconds to search for the verses I selected.

not shrouded in some mystical language?

Latin is not a mystical language. It is the foundation of English.

But if the language is not understandable by the hearer what is the point? Did not Paul require a translation when ecstatic speech was uttered that all might understand?

The language is not incomprehensible. An English speaker with no knowledge of Latin can puzzle out "Adoramus te Christe" simply from its commonality with English. And a translation is available for those who didn't recognize instantly what was presented. But I suspect most people in this readership didn't have too much trouble with it.

I think your real complaint is that the use of Latin tacitly legitimizes Rome. It is that argument that I principally reject.

carl

22 April 2014 at 18:44  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Latinae hodie, et cras, et pontifex.

22 April 2014 at 20:03  
Blogger Len said...

The point is why speak latin (which is a language of scholars) to a common man(such as myself)
It has an air of 'elitism' about it IMHO)
(Pride probably one of the worst sins?)
Anyway...with Rome it appears to speak(when one can understand it)the same language when talking of Christian principles but has an entirely different interpretation of scripture.

For example,

Christ is known throughout scripture as 'the Rock,' but Rome claims Peter is the rock so although we think we are using the same language with the same meaning we (when we look into it) Rome is quite clearly teaching 'another Gospel'.
And I haven`t even touched on the 'traditions' which Rome has tacked onto her 'Gospel'.




23 April 2014 at 07:38  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Cephas means "rock" in Aramaic. The Apostle Simon was renamed Cephas by Jesus. Cephas is translated into Greek Πετρος (Petros) and in English Peter.

What do you think Jesus meant by this?

We know from scripture that Jesus is the Rock, or Cornerstone. Therefore, this name change can be understood as Jesus handing on to Peter what He Himself is, Rock.

The difference is that Jesus is “The Rock”, and Peter is “A Rock”. Changing names was very important in scripture. Check it out. A male name change in the bible generally indicates leadership and fatherhood.

23 April 2014 at 23:09  
Blogger Len said...

Peter himself says that Jesus is the rock...
Peter never claimed to be the rock strange that Jack?. Peter never claimed authority over the rest of the disciples(quite the reverse!)
None of the church fathers ever thought Peter was the Rock..even stranger?.
Could it be that when the Donation of Constantine was exposed as a fraud(naughty boys these Catholic theologians)that another invention was needed.
If you catch someone out in a lie can you really believe anything else they come up with?.

24 April 2014 at 08:09  
Blogger Len said...

I suppose the Catholic claim must be that Jesus could not express Himself properly what He should have said( If Peter was the rock)was;
1. Then it should have been “thou art Peter, and upon you I will build my church”
2. Or “thou art Peter, and upon this rock, which is you, I will build my church”
3. Or “I say unto thee, that thou art Peter, a rock, and upon you I will build my church”

If Catholic theologians are right and Jesus could not express Himself properly what else did He get wrong?.


24 April 2014 at 08:14  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Here's what Jesus said:

"Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona (original name): "because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven.

And I say to thee: That thou art Peter;
('Cephas', meaning Rock in Aramaic, a play on words, and a new name to mark the special role) "and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
(the keys being symbolic in the OT of the authority of the master and acting in His absence) "And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven."

It is absolutely clear what Jesus intended in this exchange with Peter.

Argue about the Papacy and the history of the Church, if you will, but not the plain meaning of scripture!

25 April 2014 at 21:26  
Blogger Martin said...

Carl

As Paul says:

But even if we or an angel from heaven should preach to you a gospel contrary to the one we preached to you, let him be accursed. Galatians 1:8 ESV

The Gospel is that we are sinners, dead in our sins, incapable of doing anything to make ourselves right with God, we must throw ourselves entirely on His mercy. No penance, no good deads and no time in purgatory can make any difference.

And how could anyone know what the Bible says if you only have a Bible in Latin? The Bible is for the man in the street not for a priest, bishop or learned man. Latin is, to the one ignorant of it, a mystical language, hence the concepts of spells in Latin.

Nothing legitimizes the church of Rome for it has long left the Church of God.

27 April 2014 at 21:29  
Blogger Martin said...

Jack

Christ is still the rock, He has no need to pass on His foundational nature to anyone.

27 April 2014 at 21:29  

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