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Five Solas

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About Five Solas

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    Separates Water & Dry Land

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  1. Related to the “Baptisms for the Dead in the Second Temple?” thread – but now the question is whether LDS-style “temple marriages”/”eternal marriages” were performed in the Second Temple (prior to its destruction in 70 AD). In the previous thread we established vicarious ordinances for the dead were not authorized until after Christ’s resurrection. Therefore it would have been a very short window of opportunity (from a historical perspective) for any such proxy work to have been performed in the ancient temple. And no one on that thread made any argument in favor of such work being done there. So I think we succeeded in getting that answer. So now I want to shift gears and focus on ordinances for the living, using marriage as an example. Is there any evidence to suggest temple marriages/eternal marriages were performed in the Second Temple? If so, what is that evidence? What do folks think? --Erik PS. I remember a stake fireside, back in my LDS days, where the recently-released temple president (Seattle temple) came and spoke. (This would have been early in the last decade.) He was old and frail and strikingly tall and thin – but he had a strong voice and expressed himself clearly. He had held the position for a long time and was much admired and respected, and I recall a sort of hushed reverence in the room. I came motivated by some mix of loneliness (I didn’t have anything else to do on a Sunday evening) and some curiosity (I had never met a temple president before). So I didn’t have quite the same sentiment as others. And as a result, I undoubtedly gave his words a more critical reception. He talked about being asked numerous questions in his capacity at the temple, participating members sometimes looking to him for guidance and clarity on difficult questions—and how he would always admonish questioners to seek out the answers themselves through a combination of prayer and meditation while there. He didn't answer questions, he redirected questioners--that was an important part of his calling. But what really caught my attention was his expressed belief the temple was carrying on “the same” practices and tradition that had been done at the time of Christ—and indeed all the way back “to Adam.” How exactly that last bit was possible—no one asked, and I dismissed it as a bit of hyperbole (although he gave us no reason to think he considered it such). The LDS temple and what transpired therein was connected to antiquity. He wanted us all to understand he had played his part in a truly ancient play. Afterwards with a few folks who were left I made a small joke that the City of Bellevue (where the “Seattle” temple is actually located) probably wasn’t appreciating their growing herd of feral goats (referring to the ancient Israelite practice of “scapegoating” – where one goat would be sacrificed and the other banished to the wilderness, Leviticus 16:8). But as was not infrequently the case, my humor fell flat. (Yet another spiritual moment soiled, dang it!) So it was particularly interesting to me to read the replies on that other thread. The old gentleman would have disapproved.
  2. Baptisms for the Dead in the Second Temple?

    Well, I don't wish to put words in your mouth, Robert F. Smith. If you're arguing 1 Cor 15:29 is just a natural/logical extension of the "larger context" of Jewish thought & practice that traces back to Maccabees and perhaps earlier--I'm good with it. And if all that similarity you wrote about previously between 1 Cor 15:29 & Mac 12:44 just means Paul used the latter as a sort of template/style guide to make this particular post-resurrection point--again, no worries. I like that you put an idea out there that was new to me. So thank you for that. It's interesting you think a Catholic priest's response to Nibley somehow validates Nibley's work. I'm sure Catholic priests have responded to a great many ideas over the centuries, but I wouldn't imagine their making reply (or rebuttal in this case) necessarily lends gravitas to source. And in this case, the LDS response back to Foschini was downright insulting. The BYU online library tells us Foschini "dogmatically rejected" Nibley. The definition of dogmatic reads (per Google) - "Inclined to lay down principles as incontrovertibly true." Now if that's a fair assessment (and I suspect it actually isn't--but I couldn't access your link without registering)--you'd at least have to concede Foschini was giving Nibley a taste of his own medicine. You'll at least acknowledge that much, am I right? --Erik
  3. Baptisms for the Dead in the Second Temple?

    You were making a *very* strong case for the II Maccabees 12:44 <--> 1 Corinthians 15:29 connection in your previous post, Robert F. Smith. And now you appear to be walking it back. A reader might think that when confronted with the implication of this connection (it refutes the LDS claim that 1 Corinthians 15:29 validates proxy baptism)--you lost your appetite for it. ;0) Let's take a moment to recall your previous language advocating the connection between those passages-- You can't have it both ways. If Paul in 1 Corinthians 15:29 had the words found in II Maccabees 12:44 "in mind"--then it isn't possible Paul had the LDS notion of proxy baptism "in mind"--because the latter isn't possible until after Christ's resurrection (and II Maccabees is well before). Again, we are told-- The point I'm making isn't that hard to follow, is it? clarkgoble, are you following it now? And one more thing, Robert F. Smith. I knew it was likely to be awful (based on previous experience) - but I clicked your Nibley link anyhow. 24,000+ words. Tangent after tangent. The off-topic and non-controversial footnoted to the nth degree. And just when your eyes are watering and your brain is going numb from it all - he drops in a big 'ol slice of baloney. Like this-- Who in the church performed the actual ordinance of baptizing for the dead? It was “those apostles and teachers” of the first generation, according to the Shepherd of Hermas, who “went down living into the water” in behalf of those who had died156 and in speaking of the whole affair as a thing of the past that source implies that the work was confined to those men and their generation. This is clearly borne out in our other accounts. In the immortal words of Withnail, "What absolute twaddle." Why would you foist this on anyone, Robert F. Smith? You can't believe this any more than I do - so really, what's the point? As a side note, my brother-in-law has a large amount of shelf space in his small library dedicated to Nibley - pristine hardback copies, volume after volume. In his mind, Nibley has proved Mormonism can go toe-to-toe with anything out there & hold its ground. He's a great guy in many ways. And if he ever gets around to making a careful read of any of those books... --Erik __________________________________________________ Well, Ramona likes her malt liquor And a band from Wales that's called The Alarm She said she cried when they broke up She still plays their records at the snake farm --Ray Wylie Hubbard, 2010
  4. Baptisms for the Dead in the Second Temple?

    In fact, as I have pointed out repeatedly on this board, the late non-Mormon biblical scholar James Barr believed that Paul had that very passage in mind when he authored 1 Cor 15:29. Barr, Holy Scripture: Canon, Authority, Criticism (Westminster, 1983), 40-43, n. 19. I've read II Maccabees, but I never connected 12:44 with 1 Corinthians 15:29. That's really interesting. LDS often use the latter to argue their practice of baptism for the dead was part of the early Christian Church. But by connecting it to II Maccabees - you imply that whatever it was exactly that Paul was referring to - that activity predated the early Christian Church. And if you are right and this is also true-- Then 1 Corinthians 15:29 has nothing to do with the LDS practice of baptism for the dead--because Paul is referring to an activity conducted "before the privilege of baptism for the dead was granted." The timeline tells us 1 Corinthians 15:29 must have been about something else (even though we're not certain what or who it was). Would you agree with my conclusion? --Erik
  5. Duncan’s interesting thread “Ordinances performed in Temple” popped a question into my head—and I’m a little embarrassed to say I’m not sure of the answer (and it seems like I ought to know). Do LDS believe baptism for the dead was practiced in the Second Temple (destroyed in the Siege of Jerusalem, 70 AD) and in Solomon’s Temple before that, and perhaps even earlier? Or asked differently, has the ordinance been carried out continuously, except for an ~ 18 century hiatus between 70 AD & the time of Joseph Smith? And if so—what is the evidence? And before someone jumps up & spouts 1 Corinthians 15:29! – it’s worth a look at the Wikipedia entry on that topic. ;0) So what do folks here think? --Erik ___________________________________________ Once I wanted to be the greatest Two fists of solid rock With brains that could explain any feeling --Cat Power, 2006
  6. It's an interesting idea and approach to engagement, Bobbieaware. But I would hazard a guess few LDS are going want to seriously explore 2 Nephi in light of the Pentecostal experience. There's quite a stigma and stereotype attached to "holy rollers" & such. And confronted by the possibility of such influence on the book's author, the instinct may be to argue "Nephi" must have meant something else--as we see being done here: And then there's another approach, simply decline to engage, following this advice: I'm guessing approaches 2 & 3 (Calm's and Jane_Doe's) are going to prove more popular on the thread than your idea of an engagement that emphasizes BoM commonality with Pentecostals. But maybe I'm wrong. We'll see. --Erik
  7. Be ye therefore perfect.

    "Eventually" - Calls to mind Augustine of Hippo's famous prayer - "Grant me chastity and continence, but not yet." ;0) --Erik
  8. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    No. And given I've repeatedly (at least half a dozen times in the past 3 pages) told you I consider the 27 books of the New Testament to be Scripture--you already knew (or at least you had reason to know) the answer to that one. What is the purpose of this question? Are you hoping to impeach Luther's opinion on Tobit with his opinion on James? To what end? I said the "evidence" was compelling, Jane_Doe. That evidence is from Scripture (see the link I provided--it contained numerous references therein). Nothing I wrote suggests "argument" transcends Scripture. This is pure distortion on your part (and every reader can see it). So now how about you answer a question: What is your purpose in so doing? Why are you determined to twist this into something it's not, Jane_Doe? This isn't merely my position, it's Protestantism 101. How about you look into the history yourself, if my opinion counts for so little? Color me flattered. ;0) --Erik ______________________________________________ Please beware of them that stare They'll only smile to see you while Your time away And once you've seen what they have been To win the earth just won't seem worth Your night or your day Who'll hear what I say? --Nick Drake, 1971
  9. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    I don't consider the Apocrypha to be the "word of God" written. I share the sentiments of Martin Luther as he expressed them towards the apocryphal Book of Tobit that I quoted for you back on page 17. Here it is again, and the implication is important. I think Luther's perspective on Tobit can be extended broadly (and without much controversy among Christians, Protestant or Catholic) to many of those books--although no doubt to some more than others. There is no "flexibility" in what is considered to be the word of God written (not to be confused with the word of God incarnate--Jesus). For an in-depth treatment of why the 66 books and not others, F.F. Bruce's The Canon of Scripture is thoughtful and well written (it was assigned reading for me in a class I took ~ 10 years ago). For a quick hit on the topic, Google is your friend - and this provides a quick overview along with some Scripture references you requested: https://www.desiringgod.org/messages/why-we-believe-the-bible-part-1#WhichBooks. There's not a smoking-gun verse that enumerates all the books, but I think the evidence taken in total is compelling. Regarding the "self-contradiction" you perceive in Sola Scriptura - it helps to understand the historical context. Sola Scriptura is a response to the Roman Catholic view that authority is a three-legged stool consisting of Scripture, Tradition and the Magisterium - all with equal parts. Sola Scriptura denies this view and instead asserts Scripture is the highest authority - alone (meaning without those other two). It does not mean or imply that Elders/Pastors and Deacons in the Christian Church are without authority. Indeed, those positions, qualifications, authority and responsibilities are enumerated in the New Testament. Hopefully this is helpful. I confess I thought you might be trolling me a bit back there. But if you're unfamiliar with Protestantism & its history and your religious worldview was shaped elsewhere, concepts like Sola Scriptura can seem alien, I'm sure. My apology for previous tension. --Erik PS. In hindsight, we probably should have just opened a new thread on the topic of Sola Scriptura, rather than spend this kind of energy near the end of a 19 page thread. ;0)
  10. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    Whenever a non-LDS tries to tell an LDS what LDS believe--it tends to go poorly for the non-LDS around here. LDS are predictably scandalized and a good deal of piling on tends to follow. But when the roles are reversed (as you are doing to me)--cue the gentle sound of crickets (or maybe that's just the sound of LDS clicking on the "like" icon). Honestly though, it doesn't offend me. To tell you the truth, I find the double-standard amusing. But if I were LDS, I'd be at least a little concerned about the message being sent to any non-partisan readers out there. That said, I'm going to do my best to play it as you would have it. Here's your template, taking it as far as I can go-- I, Erik, believe the 39 books of the Old Testament together with the 27 books of the New Testament to be the Revealed Word of God. The Apocrypha/Deuterocanonical books that are sometimes included with translations of the Bible are not on par with the aforementioned 66, but are none-the-less worthy of study and consideration. I'm very comfortable with their inclusion therein, as was generally the case in both Protestant and Catholic translations alike until the 19th century. The inclusion of the Apocrypha in a bound volume in no way diminishes or compromises the other books therein. If someone believes such inclusion tarnishes the other books therein or otherwise causes offense--that's their problem, not mine. As a Protestant who affirms Sola Scriptura, I hold Scripture (the aforementioned 66 books) as the highest authority in all matters pertaining to faith and Christian practice. Jesus affirmed the books of the Hebrew Bible, explicitly referring to its first two sections, The Law and The Prophets, as well as books from the third section (The Writings), Psalms, Job, etc. Jesus authorized his apostles--and they wrote the New Testament (the question over authorship of Hebrews notwithstanding). The Apocrypha/Deuterocanonical books were neither affirmed nor written by those authorized, and therefore cannot be considered to have equivalent standing. And while Scripture is the highest authority, it is not the only authority. I recognize the authority of the Elders in my Church as well as authorities outside the church including government, my employer, my doctor, and many others besides. Sola Scriptura does not imply the absence of any other authority which would imply anarchy and be against Scripture (e.g., Titus 3:1). Does that help, or am I just fueling your fire at this point? --Erik _______________________________________________________ Gabba gabba, we accept you, we accept you, one of us --The Ramones, 1977
  11. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    To be sure, but that's not what she asked, mfbukowski. Your answer doesn't fit her "framework" any better than mine. Neither one of us has answered her Question 1 along the lines she had in mind. But it's not the answer that's the problem--as I've now labored to demonstrate, and seemingly to no avail. I think I've gone about as far as I can with this one. ;0) --Erik
  12. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    You're conflating two different things here, Jane_Doe. And I suspect this has contributed to a lot of unnecessary and unhelpful back & forth on previous pages. The Bible just means "the books." A collection of sacred texts or scriptures that Jews and Christians consider to be the product of divine inspiration and a record of the relationship between God and humans (I'm taking this straight from wikipedia, btw). What you are actually referring to is not "which Bible"--but which Bible canon. And there are a number of those. In the Jewish tradition, the Bible canon includes the 39 books of the Old Testament. The 27 books of the New Testament are excluded. In the Protestant tradition (to which I subscribe), it's the 39 books plus the 27 for a total of 66 books. The Roman Catholic tradition includes those plus additional books and the Orthodox tradition typically includes the Roman Catholic ones plus several more besides (albeit all beyond the 66 are qualified as lesser authority, "Deuterocanonical"). Worth noting most Protestant translations, including the KJV and the Geneva, included the Roman Catholic Deuterocanonicals and a some of the Othodox ones as well as part of the "Apocrypha." Their inclusion began to be dropped in the 19th century largely to reduce printing costs and thereby make the Bible more accessible. So how am I to answer your question1? Shall I divide 66 by 73 and give you the quotient? That would be nonsense, right? If some Orthodox traditions include 4 Maccabees in the Bible, does that negate everything else therein? Again, that would be nonsense, right? And yet this is what your question implies. I asked you before and you appear to have missed it--so I'll ask you again: How would you have answered your own question? --Erik ______________________________________________________ You have the right to free speech As long as you're not dumb enough to actually try it --The Clash "Know Your Rights"
  13. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    Kudos to you, Calm. I noticed in his reply, pogi carefully steered around the question of using a modern translation aloud in an LDS Gospel Doctrine class. Have you actually done this yourself--read aloud from a contemporary Bible translation in class? And if so--what was the translation you used? And what was the reaction? Once upon a time, I brought my copy of the "Precise Parallel New Testament" to my GD class (see my post mfbukowski replied to for more of my history with that book). We were on the story of the "Widow's Mite" at the end of Mark 12. The KJV reads, "For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living." The bishop's wife was in the class and she spoke up that this was an example of agency - that "want" meant the widow wanted to, that she chose to do it. It was an affirmation of an important LDS doctrine. And with the benefit of contemporary translations in my hand--I replied that this was not accurate, that "want" simply meant poverty. As I not infrequently found in Mormonism (which seemingly values conformity above all else)--being right isn't necessarily a blessing, it can be a curse. And as a side note, I think it actually serves the LDS Church's purpose to have a 400 year-old English prose Bible translation that members sometimes fail to understand. As my GD example illustrated, confusion can be your friend, and clarity--your enemy. I was told not to do it again. But this was early in the last decade. Am I to believe things have really changed that much? Do you think I should pay a visit and check it out for myself, PPNT in hand? :0) --Erik
  14. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    It's an odd question, Jane_Doe. There are multiple translations (which you are taking off the table) and there are multiple Bible canons (e.g., the Jewish Tanakh only includes the 39 books Christians consider the Old Testament). And we've discussed the books beyond these 39 + the 27 that make up the New Testament, those being of lesser authority, Deuterocanonical or Apocrypha (recall our exchanges on page 17). So it feels like we've beat this up pretty good. You could ask me what Bible translation I use. You could ask me what books I consider canonical. Those questions would make sense and I could quickly & happily provide you my answers. But which Bible, apart from translation and canon? I honestly don't understand your meaning. How would you answer your own question? --Erik _________________________________________________ I'd like to drop my trousers to the queen Every sensible child will know what this means The poor and the needy Are selfish and greedy on her terms --The Smiths "Nowhere Fast"
  15. Why argue the bible is infallible?

    Well then, color me reasonable, Meerkat. :0) --Erik