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John 2:19


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#1 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:33 AM

Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.
Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days?
But he spake of the temple of his body.
When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
The Trinitarian argument from John 2:19 consists of three main points:
  • Jesus claimed that he would raise the “temple” (by which he referred to his own body.)

  • While they misunderstood the reference to the temple, the Jews definitely understood that Jesus was making a claim about something that he himself would personally perform.

  • Not even a prophet of God – is capable of raising himself from the dead; ergo, Jesus must be more than human (i.e., none other than God Himself.)
Since this is a major proof text for Trinitarianism, I shall be examining it from every possible angle.

I shall present:
  • My own interpretation of John 2:19.

  • Standard Trinitarian responses to this analysis.

  • A defence of my interpretation.

  • Supplementary arguments which Trinitarians often use when defending their their interpretation of John 2:19.

  • An point-by-point refutation of these supplementary arguments.

  • An open challenge to Trinitarians regarding their interpretation of John 2:19.

'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#2 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:35 AM

At first glance, the Trinitarian argument appears to be perfectly reasonable – until we realise that the entire argument is predicated upon a single verse. What difference does that make? All the difference in the world, for single-verse arguments are notoriously unstable.

They usually fall into one or more of the following traps:
  • Contradicting other passages of Scripture.

  • Ignoring the context of the verse in question.

  • Overlooking alternative records of the same event.

  • Failing to take into account other verses which might qualify what is being said.
The point is driven home in a mainstream Christian article entitled Reformed Hermeneutics: How we Interpret the Bible:
Because God is its primary author, there is an organic unity to Scripture. There is ultimate coherence to the different emphases in particular parts of Scripture. There is an enduring constancy of meaning and purpose underlying the progressive, historical revelation in Scripture.

The basic message of the whole of scripture is – “God through Jesus Christ has redeemed and is renewing his people and his creation from the consequences of the fall; and how we therefore are to live.”

Because of this organized unity – the ultimate meaning of any part of Scripture – a verse or a book - is determined by its place within the whole.

The unity of Scripture as a whole is the context for interpreting any of its parts. (We cannot take texts out of context nor is single verse “prooftexting” acceptable.)

This yields a basic reformed principle of interpretation: Scripture must interpret Scripture.

[…]

What God means to teach us in a specific passage cannot be understood apart from everything else he teaches us. And what God teaches us in a specific passage may not be the whole truth he reveals to us about a topic. Example: Paul and James’ contradictory teaching on faith and works.

Some texts may only be part or one side or one phase of everything God reveals on a matter. The cumulative teaching of Scripture on a particular issue and as a whole cannot be determined without considering what each relevant text means to say.

[…]

What is affirmed in a number of places is stronger than what is taught in one or two.

[…]

A single clear text may be used to support a doctrine. But that doctrine does not have the force of one supported by several clear texts.

Source.

'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#3 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:36 AM

Our first task, then, is to check the New Testament and see if there are any other verses which say (or imply) that Jesus raised himself, since the presence of such verses would greatly strengthen the Trinitarian claim.

But an exhaustive search reveals the following list of verses in which the resurrection of Jesus is ascribed to someone other than himself.
  • Acts 2:24
    Whom God hath raised up, having loosed the pains of death: because it was not possible that he should be holden of it.

  • Acts 2:32
    This Jesus hath God raised up, whereof we all are witnesses.

  • Acts 3:15
    And killed the Prince of life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.

  • Acts 3:26
    Unto you first God, having raised up his Son Jesus, sent him to bless you, in turning away every one of you from his iniquities.

  • Acts 4:10
    Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified, whom God raised from the dead, even by him doth this man stand here before you whole.

  • Acts 5:30
    The God of our fathers raised up Jesus, whom ye slew and hanged on a tree.

  • Acts 10:40
    Him God raised up the third day, and shewed him openly;

  • Acts 13:30
    But God raised him from the dead:

  • Acts 13:33
    God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.

  • Acts 13:34
    And as concerning that he raised him up from the dead, now no more to return to corruption, he said on this wise, I will give you the sure mercies of David.

  • Acts 13:37
    But he, whom God raised again, saw no corruption.

  • Romans 4:24
    But for us also, to whom it shall be imputed, if we believe on him that raised up Jesus our Lord from the dead;

  • Romans 6:4
    Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

  • Romans 10:9
    That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.

  • I Corinthians 6:14
    And God hath both raised up the Lord, and will also raise up us by his own power.

  • Galatians 1:1
    Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)

  • Colossians 2:12
    Buried with him in baptism, wherein also ye are risen with him through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead.
Any exegesis of John 2:19 must necessarily be consistent with the verses above – and already we see problems for the Trinitarian interpretation; for not only do all of these verses credit God with the resurrection of Jesus, but several of them explicitly state that he was raised by the Father. None of them claim that Jesus was responsible for his own resurrection, nor do any of them claim that Jesus himself is God.

Consequently, the Trinitarian claim still rests entirely upon one single verse.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#4 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:38 AM

The standard Trinitarian response to this observation usually takes the following form:
  • Jesus said that he would raise himself – and Jesus wouldn’t lie, would he? So even if we cannot find any other verses which say this, we do at least have the clear testimony of Jesus. Any interpretation which argues that Jesus did not raise himself, is an interpretation which contradicts the Lord and must therefore be incorrect.

  • These other verses do not contradict Jesus’ claim to raise himself, for all three persons of the Trinity (Father, Son and Holy Spirit) were responsible for the resurrection of Jesus. John 2:19 proves that Jesus played his part, while other verses show that the Father and Holy Spirit were equally involved.

    Thus:

    God the Father raised Jesus: Galatians 1:1 (“Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead.”)

    Jesus raised himself: John 2:19 (“Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”)

    God the Holy Spirit raised Jesus: Romans 8:11 (“But if the Spirit of him that raised up Jesus from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up Christ from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwelleth in you.”)
The first verse proves nothing more than that which Christadelphians believe. The second verse does not actually prove that Jesus raised himself, but only that he said he would. The third verse does not prove that “God the Holy Spirit” raised Jesus (it merely says that God raised up Jesus), nor does it prove that the Holy Spirit is a person, nor does it prove that the Holy Spirit is God.

The Trinitarian claim that “all three persons of the Trinity were involved in the resurrection of Christ” is a total cop-out. It is merely an attempt to escape the force of those passages of Scripture which contradict the Trinitarian interpretation of John 2:19.

There is, in fact, only one part of the Trinitarian argument which carries any weight at all – the observation that Jesus claimed he would raise himself from the dead, which is quite undeniable.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#5 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:41 AM

How, then, do we deal with it?

By interpreting Scripture with Scripture, in accordance with the recommendations of the article which was cited earlier:What God means to teach us in a specific passage cannot be understood apart from everything else he teaches us. And what God teaches us in a specific passage may not be the whole truth he reveals to us about a topic.

[…]

Some texts may only be part or one side or one phase of everything God reveals on a matter. The cumulative teaching of Scripture on a particular issue and as a whole cannot be determined without considering what each relevant text means to say.
What verses do we have that might shed light on the meaning of John 2:19? Many – but the crucial ones are these:
  • John 10:18
    No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

  • Galatians 1:1
    Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;)
The first of these verses is important because it qualifies Jesus’ claim to raise himself; this was not a literal ability he inherently possessed, but rather a privilege extended to him by the Father.

The second is important because it reinforces the consistent message of Scripture: that Jesus did not raise himself at all, but was resurrected by the Father.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#6 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:43 AM

Let us now examine John 10:18 more closely:
John 10:18
No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power [Greek = exousia] to lay it down, and I have power [exousia] to take [Greek = lambanō] it again. This commandment have I received [lambanō] of my Father.
Exousia carries a range of meanings, but the one intended here is “authority” and so it has been translated in many modern versions.

See also A. T. Robertson’s Word Studies in the New Testament:
I have power to lay it down (exousian echō theinai autēn).
Exousia is not an easy word to translate (right, authority, power, privilege). See John 1:12. Restatement of the voluntariness of his death for the sheep.
So Jesus is saying that he had the right; the privilege; the authority, to take his life back again.

Some translations obscure this point by adding to the original text. The New American Bible is one such translation:
This is why the Father loves me, because I lay down my life in order to take it up again.
No one takes it from me, but I lay it down on my own. I have power to lay it down, and power to take it up again. This command I have received from my Father."
This strongly implies that Jesus will raise himself from the dead – but although the word “down” (tithēmi) is definitely present in both verses (“I lay down my life…”; “I lay it down…”) the word “up” appears nowhere in the original Greek. It has been added by the translators - most likely to provide additional support for the Trinitarian interpretation of John 2:19.

By contrast, the New English Translation is far more objective:
This is why the Father loves me—because I lay down my life, so that I may take it back again.
No one takes it away from me, but I lay it down of my own free will. I have the authority to lay it down, and I have the authority to take it back again. This commandment I received from my Father.”
Notice also the correct translation of exousia as “authority.”
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#7 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:43 AM

But what did Jesus mean when he said that he had authority to take his life back from the Father? Does this not imply a self-resurrection?

Not at all, for the Greek word in question (lambanō) can mean either “take” or “receive”, as we can see from the translation of the second “lambanō” in verse 18. Jesus is not talking about taking his life back from the Father (an active role) but receiving it (a passive one.)

The point is confirmed by the dual occurrence of lambanō in the same verse: once in reference to the receipt of his life from the Father and again in reference to the commandment that he received from the Father.

So verse 18 should be translated in the following way:
No one takes it away from me, but I lay it down of my own free will. I have the authority to lay it down, and I have the authority to receive it again. This commandment I received from my Father.
What commandment did Jesus receive from the Father? None other than the commandment to lay down his life for the sheep. He will therefore lambanō the commandment to lay down his life and in return lambanō his life back from the Father.

John 10:18 therefore functions as a crucial control text for John 2:19. Far from confirming the Trinitarian claim that Jesus would resurrect himself, it actually contradicts this argument by reaffirming the Father’s role in the resurrection of the Son.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#8 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:46 AM

This brings us back to the words of Jesus in John 2:19. If he did not mean that he would literally raise himself from the dead, why did he say this and what did he mean by it?

Jesus was employing the idiom of permission; a rhetorical device which ascribes the actions of one individual to another. It is explained here.

Lest this be seen as a convenient cop-out, I can show two more passages in John’s Gospel (in addition to John 2:19) where the idiom of permission is employed.

Thus:
  • John 3:22
    After these things came Jesus and his disciples into the land of Judea; and there he tarried with them, and baptized.

  • John 4:1-3
    When therefore the Lord knew how the Pharisees had heard that Jesus made and baptized more disciples than John,
    (Though Jesus himself baptized not, but his disciples,)

    He left Judea, and departed again into Galilee.
John ascribes the baptisms to Jesus but then appears to contradict himself by ascribing them to Jesus’ disciples. The idiom of permission resolves this apparent contradiction, as we see from the following remarks by standard authorities.

Notice that each commentator refers to John 4:2 as a control text for John 3:22, just as I have employed John 10:18 and Galatians 1:1 as control texts for John 2:19. This reaffirms the importance of interpreting a single verse by reference to others.

A. T. Robertson's commentary:Baptized (ebaptizen).
Imperfect active of baptizō. 'He was baptizing.' The six disciples were with him and in John 4:2 John explains that Jesus did the baptizing through the disciples.
Albert Barnes' commentary:And baptized –
Jesus did not Himself administer the ordinance of baptism, but his disciples did it by his direction and authority, John 4:2.
Adam Clarke's commentary:And baptized –
It is not clear that Christ did baptize any with water, but his disciples did – John 4:2; and what they did, by his authority and command, is attributed to himself.
James Burton Coffman’s commentary:Nothing may be made of the fact that Jesus did not baptize, but his disciples baptized. See under John 4:2. What one does through his agents he is lawfully said to do; therefore Jesus baptized. Why did he refrain from doing so personally? It might have given rise to jealousies and strife, later on, through some claiming greater privilege in having been baptized personally by the Lord. Perhaps, as noted above, it was to avoid any mistaken notion that Jesus was one of John's subordinates.
B. W. Johnson’s commentary:Tarried . . . and baptized.
The first intimation that Jesus administered the baptismal rite. He did it through his disciples (John 4:2).
This is the same principle that we see in John 2:19, where the Son "claims" the act of resurrection himself even though the rest of the NT tells us that his Father performed the task.

Jesus could legitimately make this claim because he had the exousia (privilege) to receive his life again. In fact this was one of the many necessary privileges he received from the Father, for as he freely admitted in John 5:30: “I can of mine own self do nothing.”

We find this same principle at work in the Old Testament:
  • Job 1:12
    And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. So Satan went forth from the presence of the LORD.

  • Job 2:6-7
    And the LORD said unto Satan, Behold, he is in thine hand; but save his life.
    So went Satan forth from the presence of the LORD, and smote Job with sore boils from the sole of his foot unto his crown.

  • Job 42:11
    Then came there unto him all his brethren, and all his sisters, and all they that had been of his acquaintance before, and did eat bread with him in his house: and they bemoaned him, and comforted him over all the evil that the LORD had brought upon him: every man also gave him a piece of money, and every one an earring of gold.
What was first attributed to the adversary is later attributed to God. There is no contradiction here, for the adversary acted with God’s divine sanction under the terms of a trial that He had chosen to bring upon God. Thus the actions of the one are treated as the actions of the other.

Additional examples may be found in the article to which I have previously referred (here.)
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#9 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:47 AM

Whilst acknowledging the use of the idiom of permission in other passages, Trinitarians will say that this is not how Christ’s followers understood his words in John 2:19.

This is a reasonable line of argument, for we must not be content with an explanation alone; we must show that it has wider support from Scripture. But is the Trinitarian claim justified or not – and how could we know either way?

We can test it by examining the many passages in which the apostles speak of Jesus’ resurrection. For if they believed that Jesus raised himself from the dead, surely they would say so. Indeed, if they truly believed that Jesus was God Himself and that this could be proved by reference to his resurrection, we would expect to find this message all through their preaching campaigns.

There are nine primary preaching lectures in the book of Acts:
  • Acts 2:22-42

  • Acts 3:12-16

  • Acts 7:2-56

  • Acts 8:30-39

  • Acts 10:34-48

  • Acts 13:15-39

  • Acts 17:22-31

  • Acts 24:14-21

  • Acts 26:2-27
In none of them do we find any claim that Jesus raised himself from the dead, nor do any of them attempt to prove that Jesus is God by reference to his resurrection.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#10 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:50 AM

The standard Trinitarian answer to this is “The speeches are obviously abbreviated, which explains why they don’t contain as much detail as we might expect to find.”

This is fine as far as it goes. But it overlooks the fact that those parts of the apostles speeches which are recorded for us, all consistently repeat the same basic points; the core of the Gospel message, if you like. But from this core message, the alleged deity of Christ and his alleged self-resurrection are still notable by absence.

Moreover, even if the apostles had preached the deity of Christ in words which somehow didn’t make it into the record, we would have some other way of learning this apart from their speeches; some sort of corroborating evidence which proves that they understood John 2:19 in the way that Trinitarians argue for.

What kind of corroborating evidence could we look for? We could look for the confessions of new converts and see if they mention the deity of Christ. We could look at the words of Christians who weren’t apostles but were part of the early church (ie not new converts.) We could examine the accusations that were brought against the apostles by the Jews and their leaders, and see what the apostles had been accused of teaching.

All of these options will give us a bigger picture of what was taught and what people believed as a result of that message.

I have searched the book of Acts thoroughly, but I cannot find any reference to the deity of Christ or the claim that Jesus raised himself from the dead. Nor do I find the Jews accusing the apostles of preaching any such thing.

This is extremely damaging for the Trinitarian argument, because it proves that the apostles did not understand Jesus’ words in the way that Trinitarians do. It also proves that they never preached Christ as God, nor even that he resurrected himself.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#11 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:51 AM

Some Trinitarians will counter this by claiming that “Evidence of absence is not absence of evidence”; in other words, just because we can’t find any passages which show the apostles preaching that Jesus is God (and that he resurrected himself) doesn’t mean that they didn’t do this at some stage.

This defence is flawed for a number of reasons.

Firstly, the preaching campaigns in the book of Acts consistently list the essential elements of the Christian message - but none of these nine major speeches make any reference to the deity of Christ or John 2:19

Secondly, we have ample evidence from the apostles’ own mouths that they believed God to be responsible for the resurrection of Jesus, and not Jesus himself.

Thirdly, if Trinitarians wish to claim that the deity and self-resurrection of Christ was preached at some stage, the onus is upon them to prove this from Scripture. They can’t escape the dilemma by saying that it was preached but not recorded, for this proves nothing.

It is merely an argument from silence.
'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#12 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 11:55 AM

The Trinitarians’ last line of defence is found in John 2:22 –“When therefore he was risen from the dead, his disciples remembered that he had said this unto them; and they believed the Scripture, and the word which Jesus had said”
Trinitarians will claim that the apostles must have believed that Jesus was God and that he raised himself from the dead because “they believed the Scriptures & the word which Jesus said.” At face value, it looks like a reasonable argument. But a closer examination will reveal the flaws.

While they are happy to take their argument from “…and the word which Jesus had said”, Trinitarians always seem to ignore the first half of that statement:…they believed the Scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
But which “Scripture” is John talking about? He must be referring to some passage in the Old Testament which speaks of Christ’s resurrection.

It could be this one:Psalm 16:10
For thou wilt not leave my soul in hell; neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
We know that this is a likely candidate, because Peter quotes it in Acts 2:27, 31, 35.Because thou wilt not leave my soul in hell, neither wilt thou suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.

[…]

He seeing this before spake of the resurrection of Christ, that his soul was not left in hell, neither his flesh did see corruption.

[…]

Wherefore he saith also in another psalm, Thou shalt not suffer thine Holy One to see corruption.
But this doesn’t say that Jesus raised himself, nor does it say that Jesus is God.

Our next stop is Psalm 2:7.I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
We know that this is a likely candidate, because it is quoted in Acts 13:33…God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.
…reappears in Hebrews 1:5…For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?
…and again in Hebrews 5:5.So also Christ glorified not himself to be made a high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, today have I begotten thee.
In all three cases - including the psalm - the Father is credited with the resurrection of the Son, nobody claims that Jesus is God and nobody claims that Jesus raised himself.

So what was it that the apostles believed?
  • They believed the Old Testament Scriptures, which had predicted the resurrection of the Son by the Father.

  • They believed the words of Christ, who in John 2:19 had said that he would raise himself but in John 10:18 had qualified his earlier statement by pointing out that he would actually be receiving his life back from the Father.

'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#13 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 12:52 PM

To summarise:

I have shown that although Christ said he would raise himself in John 2:19, his words were not intended to be taken literally.

This is proved by:
  • Reference to the idiom of permission - which not only used twice more in the Gospel of John, but also demonstrated in other OT and NT passsages.

  • His statement in John 10:18 - which qualifies his earlier claim in John 2:19.

  • Logic and Biblical consistency - which require that Christ's claim in John 2:19 must not contradict any passage in which the Father is said to have raised the Son.
I have also shown that Christ's apostles understood his words in the same way that I do.

This is proved by:
  • Their preaching campaigns in the book of Acts - in which they consistently credit the Father with the resurrection of Christ and never claim that Jesus raised himself from the dead.

  • Their letters to fellow Christians - in which they consistently credit the Father with the resurrection of Christ and never claim that Jesus raised himself from the dead.

  • Old Testament passages predicting the resurrection of Christ - which consistently credit the Father with the resurrection of the Son and never claim that the Messiah would raise himself from the dead.

  • The complete absence of any passage in which the apostles were accused by the Jews of preaching that Christ was God and/or that he raised himself from the dead.

'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.

#14 Evangelion

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Posted 29 August 2004 - 12:55 PM

In conclusion, I offer the following challenge to any Trinitarian who reads this thread:
  • Please show me any place in Scripture where the apostles are accused by the Jews of preaching that Jesus is God.

  • Please demonstrate from Scripture that the apostles used the resurrection of Christ to prove his deity. These passage must explicitly state that Jesus raised himself from the dead and must therefore be God Himself. They must show that this is what the apostles believed and taught.

  • Please show me any place in Scripture where the apostles preached that Jesus literally raised himself from the dead. These passages must explicitly state that Jesus was literally responsible for bringing his own dead body back to life again, despite the fact that he was dead at the time. They must show that this is what the apostles believed and taught.

'Abba Antony said, "A time is coming when men will go mad, and when they see someone who is not mad, they will attack him saying, 'You are mad, you are not like us.'"'

Ward, Benedicta. The Sayings of the Desert Fathers (2006), Antony 25, p. 5.

Credo.




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