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Re: One last bone...(of contention?)

Sep 13, 1995 07:32 AM
by Arthur Paul Patterson

At 7:06 PM 9/13/95, "Murray Stentiford, Scientific Software and Systems
Ltd"@vnet.n wrote:
>Daniel << >>Yet His own claims extend far beyond any of the other masters.

Art: One of the greatest difficulties in this is that both Daniel, and even
the way that Murray is using the Scripture here - assume that we have the
actual words on Jesus in the Johannine comments. This is called the ipsa
verba or the very words.

What I think we have here are the reconstructed words of Jesus taken from
the 30 AD and placed in the 90 AD. Probably they are transported across a
cultural barrier or two as well. So some words of Jesus are taken up and
used to address the situation in life of the later community. This
community the later one, was struggling to formulate its Christology in
distinction from that of the early church. So we have theological intention
being expressed not the very words of Jesus.

Yet I believe that these words placed in Jesus mouth by the gospel writer
could well have been the words of the "living Christ" given for that
precise time and place. For a variety of reasons the Johannine community
needed to know that Christ was pre-existent but were slightly ambiguous
about the complete identity of Jesus with YHWH or God - this development
did occur when Athanasius 296 ad.-373 ad contested with Arius who held that
Christ while the eternal logos was not equal with the Father - Athanasius
with a little help from Constantinian politics won the day.

What I fear is that when we just read the Scripture from our presuppostions
we end up in grief of interpretation. The first rule in my opinion is to
hold our interpretaion lightly including the one I just gave concerning

>>How do you know?
>Because those that knew Him, wrote about HIm. And those writings are
>well recorded and preserved. Take a look at John 8:48-59. Did Jesus
>make any claims of Divinity? The resuly of His claims is very apparent in
>vs 59.>>

Art: John may very well have been written in 100 Ad so John the Disciple is
probably not the author more than likely it is John the Elder from Antioch
who remembered the Beloved Disciples teaching or had it past on to him. Not
as straightforward a story as first imagined.

>I see this as an example of how there can be an apparently big difference
>of interpretion, yet the possibility of a strong common ground of
>spiritual understanding, between a fundamentalist view and a theosophical

Art: The fact that others have come to realize a certain oneness with God
or the Oversoul does allow for a common experience and thus dialogue. But
the evangelical doesn't usually appeal to direct experience for authority.
Some, the more charismatic do hold that they have had a unifying experience
with the Spirit but unity with God is not a main factor. Catholic mystics
on the other hand have an easier time in dialoguing especially with Eastern
religions. Personally I think that we would have an easier time dialoguing
about direct experience than we would dogmatics anyday.

Thanks Murray for your input it once again reminded me of the need to learn
from each other in group.

Arthur Paul Patterson

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