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  1. #1
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    Bible verse discussions

    Okay, let's start this one up. I know alot of you know i am LDS, and for the purpose of these discussions, I will stick to Old and New Testaments.

    First off, the ground rules:
    1) Those who wish to discuss within this thread, please, R-E-S-P-E-C-T is the main idea here.
    2) We are here to exchange ideas and what we have come to understand/interpret from these passages of the holy bible, not to tell each other they are wrong.

    3) Feel free to use whatever version of the bible you wish when discussing specific verses. I (personally) will use the KJV, but I have access to many different versions, and feel that the fact that there are multiple versions of the same idea shows that its all about interpretations.

    If this somehow violates this board's policies, than by all means, please remove this thread ASAP, but if that does occur, if someone would like to PM me a good forum site to have such a discussion in, please do so. I find, though, that most forum sites are setup by a primary group of believers, who (for the most part), all believe the same thing, and interpret texts in a very similar way.

    My main idea here is by all of us coming together to interpret specific things in the bible, we can all grow as a group. I feel that the more ways we see how God talks to us, the more we grow and understand.

    So, off to the races...............

    Rev 18:3, for all nations have drunk of the wine of the wrath of her fornication, and the kings of the earth have committed fornication with her, and waxed rich through the abundance of her delicacies.

    This chapter, and several before it, are all talking about "Babylon". John is describing (of course) the end days of the world. I think its interesting here how "Babylon" (proper) has already fallen, though there is a country there which stands on the map where Babylon use to stand. The country (primarily) is Iraq, though several countries there in the middle east take up land where Babylon once use to stand.

    Where I go with the interpretation here is something that has made many think in my local "ward" (aka, congregation). I attribute Babylon to Iraq, and the wine as Oil. If interpreted that way, then the verse makes a ton of sense in today's terms. John is describing in this verse how all nations have done very bad things to get their hands on the "delicacies" of Iraq, and have profited greatly from it. John goes on to say (in this chapter) that the world will no longer buy of her merchandise anymore, that the world once lusted of her, and will find her no more. Could this be John speaking of the time when Oil will be no more? As dependent the world has become upon oil, lack thereof would definitely bring about an apocalypse of sorts.

    Thoughts?
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

  2. #2
    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    So you pick the first verse to be from Revelation? Jumping right in to the tough stuff--how about something nice from Luke?

    Anyway, the NLT version replaces fornication with adultery, which I think more clearly illustrates how the world will not just sin, but blatantly sin against God (cheating on their marriage with Christ). Anyhow, the relating wine with oil is an interesting thought. I had always more related the wine with getting drunk, as sin corrupts the mind. Being drunk is a commonly used in the Bible to describe how sin takes over the mind and makes you do things you wouldn't normally do.

    So I had thought more in generalities, but that is the divine nature of the Bible. A passage can mean multiple things to multiple people, and two (or more) different things at once. Certainly oil is interesting...

    What interests me more is what will happen to Iraq. I had read once that Saddam was trying to rebuild up a "Babylon" in the southern area of Iraq where Babylon was supposed to be centered. But now the country has changed governments. A central theme of Revelation is how Babylon will rise up again--I wonder how and when that will happen.
    Jeremiah 29:11

  3. #3
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    Interesting that fornication was replaced w/adultery in your version of the bible. I went back to the greek word it is coming from, and found it to be πορνεία, or porneia, which means: harlotry (including adultery and incest); figuratively idolatry: - fornication. It comes from the greek word πορνεύω, or porneuō, which means: to act the harlot, that is, (literally) indulge unlawful lust (of either sex), or (figuratively) practise idolatry: - commit (fornication).

    From that, I can see the idea your text translated from. I am curious if God feels that what governments do to get their hands on oil is a form of adultery? I am fairly certain that in God's eye, oil isnt a necessity, so the lengths which we go through to get it has to be very "absent of God".... Interesting....
    Last edited by Nephi; 05-07-2005 at 08:04 AM.
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

  4. #4
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    Welp, I honestly believed that we would have had more people respond to this thread (where are you njbair? where are you amanda?) Que sera, I wanna see if I can get more discussion going here...

    1Cor 15:29, Else what shall they do which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? Why are they then baptized for the dead?

    This was a new concept to me when we became a part of this church. I am curious as to what other churches derived from this passage. In the LDS church, we pratice as this verse states: baptisms for the dead. In other churches I have been in, the verse was never spoken of. I am curious as to what other people believe this verse is speaking of?
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

  5. #5
    Converged Hundredaire Socialite njbair's Avatar
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    Sorry for my late arrival. I've been preoccupied with school as of late.

    I'm not going to touch on the Reveleation verse, as I feel I am ill-equipped for such exegesis; but I will share my thoughts on the Corinthians passage. I will note that I'm reading from the New American Standard Bible in e-Sword for Windows. I haven't looked at the divisions in the text, but simply going by the chapter divisions, this entire section of text deals with the implications of the Resurrection. Essentially, Paul is letting the church at Corinth know that Christ's resurrection was/is as necessary as His death. Christ's resurrection paved the way for the resurrection of all future believers. This is apparently in response to some in the church who were claiming otherwise:

    1Co 15:12 Now if Christ is preached, that He has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?
    Paul elaborates on the necessity of the Resurrection, saying that if Christ has not been raised, our faith is worthless. The idea here being that Christ's resurrection was necessary for His ascension, which was necessary in order for Him to sit before the throne of God as a high priest and intercede on our behalf. This entire passage is clearly written for the purpose of "straightening out" some erroneous thinking at Corinth.

    Let's take a look at the immediate context of the verse:

    1Co 15:25-32 For He must reign until He has put all His enemies under His feet. (26) The last enemy that will be abolished is death. (27) For HE HAS PUT ALL THINGS IN SUBJECTION UNDER HIS FEET. But when He says, "All things are put in subjection," it is evident that He is excepted who put all things in subjection to Him. (28) When all things are subjected to Him, then the Son Himself also will be subjected to the One who subjected all things to Him, so that God may be all in all. (29) Otherwise, what will those do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead are not raised at all, why then are they baptized for them? (30) Why are we also in danger every hour? (31) I affirm, brethren, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily. (32) If from human motives I fought with wild beasts at Ephesus, what does it profit me? If the dead are not raised, LET US EAT AND DRINK, FOR TOMORROW WE DIE.
    By skimming the text, it appears that this section could stand alone as a paragraph, although the computerized version which I'm reading does not indicate paragraph breaks. At first glance, this passage appears to be a hodgepodge of disconnected thoughts, but reading it over several times brings us back to the main idea of the chapter, that the resurrection of believers is necessary in order for our faith to be worth anything. So what are the main ideas here?

    25-26. Christ will reign until all of His enemies have been destroyed, The last of whom is death itself.
    27-28. All things are in subjection to Him, except for "He who put all things in subjection to Him", resulting in God being all in all. This is to say, Christ (who is part of the Trinity) will be subject to the whole of the Godhead.
    29. ?
    30-32. If not for our coming resurrection, there is no point in our faith, and it would make more sense to use our time now.

    As is the case with all Scripture, one must extract meaning from this text based on its surrounding context and themes. The Bible is not an erratic arrangement of independent thoughts. Thus, we must reconcile the verse in question with the rest of the text. Would there be any reason to extract a commandment to baptize others on behalf of the dead from this passage? Christ, in the Great Commission, sets a precedent for baptism of new believers; but he does so by coming out and commanding it.

    Some believe that Corinthian Christians had erroneously adopted the practice of baptising others on behalf of the dead, and that Paul uses it as an ad hominem argument for his case of resurrection: "For if the dead aren't raised, why bother baptising on their behalf?" However, there is no reason, aside from pure conjecture, to think that the Corinthians practiced this act. More likely, Paul was referring to Christians in the early church who would put off baptism until they were near death. They did this because persecution in those days (resulting from a public proclamation of faith) was much more harsh than that to which we are accustomed. This would coincide with the contents of the oldest manuscripts, from which the NASB bases its translation, which would more accurately be translated as "for them" as opposed to "for the dead".

    Either way, Paul was not condoning the behavior of these believers. He was simply using it to illustrate a point: "You go through all this, yet you claim there is no resurrection of believers? If that is the case, what is the point?" I see no reason to interpret a precept for ritual here. Oftentimes doctrinal flaws result from viewing scripture under a microscope without ever looking at the entire context. Context is all too important. We read every other book in context. Why should the Bible be any different? God was not giving us a puzzle to solve, but a tool upon which to establish our lives.
    -nickster

    I'm pretty good with a bowstaff.

  6. #6
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    nick: very well written. I am very pleased that you responded. I understand your view, though I do not say that I agree with it. I do see where you must take things within context, but alas, what I dont see in that passage is Paul does not tell them that what they are doing is wrong.

    Also, I looked upon many different versions of the bible (yes, I use e-sword as well, thanks to you ), even the greek version, and they all specifically tell of baptising for the dead, though your idea that they were going of the custom of baptising just before death is a very interesting idea that I must research further. Thank you so much for your imput.
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

  7. #7
    Converged Hundredaire Socialite njbair's Avatar
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    You're right, it is odd that Paul does not explicitly refute the practice. But that is partially what leads me to think that he was not referring to that particular practice, but instead to belated baptisms. The Greek in e-Sword is based on a later manuscript. The earlier manuscripts use a pronoun, "for them", according to the Jamieson, Fausset and Brown Commentary.

    Whichever one paul was referring to, it is odd that he didn't condemn the practice, if in fact it is a wrong practice. But as I said, I don't feel that the lack of reproof is a sufficient scriptural basis for establishing a ritual such as that. It seems to me that if baptising others on behalf of the dead was necessary, that God would have given us explicit instructions to do so.

    I don't know if such instructions exist in the Book of Mormon, but they are not to be found in the OT or NT. Since I am, to a large degree, unclear on Mormon theology, perhaps you can enlighten me a bit:
    • Is your theology dispensational?
    • If so, did the arrival of Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon mark a new dispensation, or is it still the same as that which began on the day of Pentecost?
    • Are non-Mormon Christians (such as myself) children of God? (That is, are we fulfilling the requirements in order to secure our eternity?)
    I'm not sure how fruitful you research will be on this verse. I haven't found very much about it. I think the general consensus among Protestants is that God never gave us a commandment to baptize on behalf of the dead; therefore it is unnecessary to do so.
    -nickster

    I'm pretty good with a bowstaff.

  8. #8
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    I love probing questions, and especially if you have questions about mormons. For ANY christian, if one does not know the answer, they need to research further to come up with the answer instead of just spurting something off the top of their head, nick. However, I can answer this quite well for you.

    The pentacost which you are refering (I am assuming), is Acts, chapter 2. In it, "The Spirit poured out on the day of Pentecost -- Peter testifies of Jesus' resurrection -- He tells how to gain salvation and speaks of the gift of the Holy Ghost -- Many believe and are baptized." Specifically, the main verse here is verse 41, where, "they that gladly received his word were baptized: and the same day there were added unto them about three thousand souls." Now this was a wonderful day for the word of God, and for the spreading of the gospel, but Peter could not have baptized all 3,000. Even if he did, just because one is baptised, does not necessarily mean that someone can then turn around and baptize another. (I am assuming that Peter baptisized some, and they in turn baptized others without the authority to do as such).

    The important thing that LDS church stresses is that the Authority to do God's work on earth was lost during the apostasy. The authority was not transfered during this pentecost meeting, just that souls were added.

    For those that dont know, the apostasy is when the word of God is lost on the face of the earth. This is something that was prophesized throughout several different books in the bible (see 2Thes 2:3 for one example). When the word of God was lost, so was the authority to do his work on earth.

    This is not saying that there were no good people on the earth, for even in the most evil of places, there lives good (see the story of Sodom and Gamora for Lot and his family), however, the authority to do his work on the earth was lost until the time of Joseph Smith. This follows scripture, strait back to pre-NT times when Isaiah stated there would be a time of no word followed by a time of the Word of God, which would never be stricken from the earth again.

    This is what Mormons believed happened in America in the 1800s when Joseph Smith not only found the Book of Mormon, but also was given the keys of Authority, placed in his possesion to be held for the rest of time on earth. The Authority that God gave to Joseph Smith didnt exactly start a new dispensation, moreso, it restored God's church on the earth.

    As for your final quesiton, we are all children of God, I believe, whether or not you are a Christian. Do you have the ability to goto Heaven? Thats between you and God, and you wont know until your day of reckoning. I know that any church I have been to, there are people who will tell you that they know, "you are saved!" or, "I will see you in heaven!", when they have no clue if they or you will be there! Thats between you and God and that book that's in heaven recording your every thought/action/word.

    All I can say is this. I PERSONALLY believe that every single soul on this earth has a chance to end up in heaven, whether or not they are LDS, whether or not they are Christian, whether or not they are any religion whatsoever. Its up to God for that. HAVING SAID THAT, I believe that Christianty is a path setup to give you a good shot at making it to heaven, and LDS is the best of those paths (at least for my family).

    I hope this helps out in your questions. I pray I have sufficiently answered them.
    Last edited by Nephi; 05-11-2005 at 07:06 PM.
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

  9. #9
    Melchizedek Priest Nephi's Avatar
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    Okay, so does anyone else have a verse you would like others to read and discuss? This isnt just my thread.
    Nephi
    "Thy days are known, and thy years shall not be numbered less; therefore, fear not what man can do, for God shall be with you forever and ever." -- D&C 122:9

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