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enummaelish

The Image of God

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== This does not fulfill John 4:23, it states plainly: God is a Spirit. It says nothing about the Holy Ghost or the Godhead

This is the lamest argument that Evangelicals need to abandon. In fact, many of them have.

http://kevingraham.net/5spirit.htm

==

Thanks Keven. I've printed it and will read it at work.

Have a great day!

Paul O

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I agree completely Kevin... linking this two verses together as they do opens the biggest can of worms I've ever seen... espcially since Paul calls the ressurected Christ... who a body of "Flesh and Bones" a Spirit.

1 Cor. 15: 45

45 And so it is written, The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit.

So either Paul is Confused or Jesus is... Or you can take the LDS understanding that there are different kinds of "Spirits", spirits with bodies and spirits (Ghosts) without. But then... you must drop the stick you are beating Mormons with and God forbi we do that!

Either way... the EVs haven't a leg to stand on.

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Kevin: In what sense can God's being be considered "transcendent," if He literally exists everywhere, including hell?

Johnny misses the point,

== Do you consider "above all" transcendent? If not could you explain what is mean by "above all".

Yes I do consider "above all" transcendent. This is the point. God is transcendent regarding his location, which is why it makes sense to consider his location in a higher sphere. I am asking you to make sense of this information if we take your argument of omnipresence seriously. Something that exists everywhere is everywhere. It would be superfluous to say it is "above" or "below" or "behind" us. One might as well say "there is oxygen over to my left." It is everywhere.

Therefore, what sense does it make to say God is "above" if it isn't true in any real sense? One of the most unique attributes of the "Most High God" is that He exists in heaven. A realm far above us. But according to what you say, God is everywhere. He is in my pudding, He is in your exhaust pipe, and he is in hell. Your argument interprets the scripture literally when it says God exists in Sheol, the realm of the dead. Sheol is below us. So if we follow your interpretation, we could say God is a God beneath us. But that sounds pretty degradative doesn't it?

The point being, the verses you use are in direct reference to man's inability to hide from God.

== You would agree that the Holy Ghost is spirit ... and would you agree that the Holy Ghost is God ... would you then agree that that God is spirit just like John 4:24 says. If not could you explain your reasoning.

I have already. No less than 4 times with you over the past year. You're never phased by compelling arguments that conflict with your predetermined Catholic viewpoints. And you won't deal with much of anything that is said. You have yet to provide an argument from context as I have. You isolate phrases in sporadic verses and then presume to speak of a theological point "the Bible" was trying to make. All because it fits a Catholic doctrine.

We've gone down this road before. It was a waste of time. It seems that every few months or so someone starts another thread on Gen 1:26 and someone emails me to let me know. I think it would be best if someone would look up the previous exchanges that took place here. They would see the same rehearsed mantra, along with an LDS refutation.

== I am still waiting for you to answer my questions above or shall I assume that you agree that the Lord is at hand and can fill heaven and earth (Jer 23:23,24) and that God is above all, and through all, and in you all (Eph 4:6)?

Johnny, I have answered it. It apparently flew right over your head as you ignored everything I said about the context. You however, have not responded to the argument from context. Probably because there is no real response.

Which is fine. Just stop pretending to be the victor in a lost cause argument that is based strictly upon Catholic council statements which you deem divine, and not proper exegesis of the Bible.

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Do I not fill both heaven and earth? says the LORD.

Now what does God mean to say here? Interpret for us Mr. Kevin.

When God creates worlds, is he not filling the heavens?

Or when he created the world or the earth and put on it everything that is here, was he not filling the earth?

Just a couple of questions I thought to ask.

Marvin

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Kevin W. Graham  writes,

I am asking you to make sense of this information if we take your argument of omnipresence seriously.

And I am asking you to look at the verses in the Bible seriously ... the Bible says "through all" and "in you all" ... the Bible says "fills" ... sounds like omnipresence.

But according to what you say, God is everywhere. He is in my pudding, He is in your exhaust pipe, and he is in hell.

What does the Bible say ...the Bible says "through all" ... sounds like everywhere.

And you won't deal with much of anything that is said. You have yet to provide an argument from context as I have.

You arguments do not deal with context of the scripture ... Jer 23:23,24 is talking about presence ... it says "a God at hand".

I think it would be best if someone would look up the previous exchanges that took place here. They would see the same rehearsed mantra, along with an LDS refutation.

They would see that you have not refuted ...

Johnny, I have answered it. It apparently flew right over your head as you ignored everything I said about the context. You however, have not responded to the argument from context. Probably because there is no real response.

You have not answered it ... The context is presence ... the context is "through all" ... my response is what the Bible reveals ... you have not responded to the scriptures I have provided.

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John Russell  writes,

The first scripture indicates a disjunct sharing of information between the Father and Son, which I have not been able to understand from the Trinitarian perspective. The second citation would suggest that Jesus and His Father function as distinct persons, as Jesus claims that the Father's testimony substantiates Jesus' claims, but that Jesus' testimony of himself is inadequate. Could you clarify this for me?

From a Trinitarian perspective the Father and the Son are distinct persons, I would agree their is distinct sharing of information and each is a distinct person.

From a Trinitarian perspective:

- God is one but not solitary

- The Trinity is not three Gods but one God in three divine persons

- The Godhead (the divinity) of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is one.

- the persons are not blended and their essence is not divided.

- the threee persons are not three eternal beings

- the term "person" is used to designate the real distinction between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit

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russianwolfe  writes,

When God creates worlds, is he not filling the heavens?

He is filling the heavens during creation but Jer 23:23,24 is not talking about creation it is revealing that God is at hand.

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== The answer is no. You and I both believe that he can see us anywhere and at any time.

Right. Since when has agreeing with someone been so excrutiating?

Actually Kevin, it wasn't excrutiating at all. I was quite pleased to see that you and I finally agreed on a point.

== Now what does God mean to say here? Interpret for us Mr. Kevin.

You just did. God being "everywhere" is, according to the context, in reference to his ability to see us. It is possible that God can see something without physically being there. Likewise, I can say "I was there" when the buildings fell on 9-11, even though technology (live broadcasting) is what I am referring to, not my physical presence.

I'm not satisfied with your response here. I was hoping that you would translate what the Lord meant when He said, "Do I not fill both heaven and earth? says the LORD."

Personally, I don't think He is referring to the ability to "see" both heaven and earth. Rather that He "fills" both heaven and earth.

Would you please translate what God meant when he said, "Do I not fill both heaven and earth? says the LORD." Or at least show us how that is taken out of context.

Peace be with you.

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John Russell  writes,

The first scripture indicates a disjunct sharing of information between the Father and Son, which I have not been able to understand from the Trinitarian perspective. The second citation would suggest that Jesus and His Father function as distinct persons, as Jesus claims that the Father's testimony substantiates Jesus' claims, but that Jesus' testimony of himself is inadequate. Could you clarify this for me?

From a Trinitarian perspective the Father and the Son are distinct persons, I would agree their is distinct sharing of information and each is a distinct person.

From a Trinitarian perspective:

- God is one but not solitary

- The Trinity is not three Gods but one God in three divine persons

- The Godhead (the divinity) of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit is one.

- the persons are not blended and their essence is not divided.

- the threee persons are not three eternal beings

- the term "person" is used to designate the real distinction between the Father, Son and Holy Spirit

Thanks for the response, Johnny. I still have a lot to learn about the Trinity, obviously. Is it possible for the father to testify of Jesus, as a Being independent of Jesus, and still be in the person of Jesus? From Jesus' comments in Mark regarding the Second Coming, it is obvious that the Father has information that Jesus does not. How is this interpreted in a Trinitarian context? Do you have some good references on the topic?

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== And I am asking you to look at the verses in the Bible seriously ...

No you're not. You're asking me to accept your self-serving, anachronistic reading of an ancient text in an out of context manner. Sorry, but I'm not interested.

== the Bible says "through all" and "in you all" ... the Bible says "fills" ... sounds like omnipresence.

Perhaps to someone who hasn't a clue how to acknowledge, let alone understand context.

== What does the Bible say ...the Bible says "through all" ... sounds like everywhere.

That's a pretty simplistic approach to scripture. It reflects a 20th century perception which has been foisted upon a 1st century document. But you're trying to avoid the dilemma you created for yourself. If this interpretation is true, then how can God be called "transcendent"? This would mean God is raised to a higher plane (i.e. exalted). But your interpretation of selected verses places God "everywhere," including Hell. You insist God is Most High and also God is Most Low. Why? Because God is "everywhere," period.

You've effectively ignored this twice now. Ignorance is bliss.

== You arguments do not deal with context of the scripture ... Jer 23:23,24 is talking about presence ... it says "a God at hand".

That is almost funny. You dissect one phrase from a verse (Jer 23:24), completely ignoring the entire verse which determines context, and then you run centuries into the future and grab another phrase from the Apostle Paul. You then pretend these phrases are complimenting one another without any support or explanation - only your say so. Yet, I am criticized for following the proper protocol by relying on the immediate context to determine the meaning of a verse. This is a joke. Who ever told you you had any business exegeting scripture?

== They would see that you have not refuted ...

Johnny, I have faith in those who have the aptitude to understand what I have presented. You shouldn't project your own shortcomings onto others just because you don't see what I've clarified twice already.

== You have not answered it ... The context is presence ... the context is "through all" ... my response is what the Bible reveals ... you have not responded to the scriptures I have provided.

Again, this only goes to show why you have no business pretending to know anything about proper exegesis. You take one little phrase and ignore context of the entire verse, all the while obnoxiously declaring that your little synopsis must be what "the Bible reveals."

Dogger: I'm not satisfied with your response here.

I can understand why. It thoroughly undermines what you believed to be true. And this may come as a shock to you, but I never had any intention of convincing you of anything. I am merely refuting yours and Johnny's poor excuse for exegesis through a thorough analysis of the context. If I were you I wouldn't feel satisfied either.

== Personally, I don't think He is referring to the ability to "see" both heaven and earth. Rather that He "fills" both heaven and earth.

Well what you think personally isn't really important. What is important is how the author of the text thought, and the context indicates that he had sight in mind; mans inability to escape God's view. Period.

== I was hoping that you would translate what the Lord meant when He said, "Do I not fill both heaven and earth? says the LORD."

Again, let us now take a final gander at the entire verse in context. It should be obvious why you and Johnny choose to divorce the second sentence from its context. It makes it easier for you to assume my argument from context is invalid.

Jer 23:24: "Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? says the Lord."

According to you and Johnny, God seeing and man hiding have nothing to do with the verse that asks, "Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?

Nevermind the fact that this is exactly what the verse says in the preceding sentence. Dogger says it has nothing to do with it and that is that. Johnny is more interested in leaping a millenia into the future in order to dissect yet another phrase from Ephesians. Why? Because he doesn't like what the immediate context of Jeremiah 23 has to say.

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Jer 23:24: "Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? says the Lord. Do not I fill heaven and earth? says the Lord."

According to you and Johnny, God seeing and man hiding have nothing to do with the verse that asks, "Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?

Nevermind the fact that this is exactly what the verse says in the preceding sentence. Dogger says it has nothing to do with it and that is that. Johnny is more interested in leaping a millenia into the future in order to dissect yet another phrase from Ephesians. Why? Because he doesn't like what the immediate context of Jeremiah 23 has to say.

Kevin,

There are two questions posed by the Lord.

#1 Can anyone hide himself.......

The answer that you and I agree on is...No. Nobody can hide from the Lord.

#2 Do I not fill heaven and earth?

You need to address this question.

You are assuming that because God can see you, that means he has to be watching you from afar. That is simply not the case. God clarifies Himself by saying first that He can see you and you can't hide and secondly that he fills heaven as well as earth. (omnipresent)

Just because you have to watch the news to see what is going on in other parts of the world, doesn't mean that is the way God works as well.

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Kevin W. Graham  writes,

That's a pretty simplistic approach to scripture. It reflects a 20th century perception which has been foisted upon a 1st century document. But you're trying to avoid the dilemma you created for yourself. If this interpretation is true, then how can God be called "transcendent"? This would mean God is raised to a higher plane (i.e. exalted). But your interpretation of selected verses places God "everywhere," including Hell. You insist God is Most High and also God is Most Low. Why? Because God is "everywhere," period. 

Jesus helps us to understand Eph 4:6:

- the Father is the husbandman is "above all"

- the Son is the true vine which is "through all"

- the Holy Ghost is in "you all" because Ephesians 4 is directed toward believers were are abiding in the true vine

Ephesians 4

6 One God and Father of all, who is above all, and through all, and in you all.

John 15

1 I am the true vine, and my Father is the husbandman.

4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me.

5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.

That is almost funny. You dissect one phrase from a verse (Jer 23:24), completely ignoring the entire verse which determines context, and then you run centuries into the future and grab another phrase from the Apostle Paul.

So lets stick to Jer 23 and not dissect it ... it reveals the following:

Jeremiah 23

23 Am I a God at hand, saith the LORD, and not a God afar off?

24 Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD.

Verses 23 is talking about God presence with the words "a God at hand" ... if God is present then he can "see him" as verse 24 reveals ...

According to you and Johnny, God seeing and man hiding have nothing to do with the verse that asks, "Can anyone hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?

If God is present as verse 23 reveals then God can "see" and because God "fill heaven and earth" then you cannot "hide".

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== You need to address this question.

I have. Several times. I am exegeting the text properly. I'm not isolating phrases and then approaching it in a 21st century mentality.

== You are assuming that because God can see you, that means he has to be watching you from afar.

No I'm not. I never said it meant He has to be doing anything. I'm saying that there is nothing in the text that would demand your simplistic, anachronistic reading that says God's being literally fills "everything." The only thing I'm assuming is that Jeremiah just might have a better idea what he meant than either you or Johnny. When he says God fills everywhere, he is not refuting the well established biblical doctrine that God has location as God Most High. Nor is he not contradicting the well established doctrine that God is transcendent and that He is exalted. To say "I am everywhere" is obviously another way of saying "You cannot hide from me." It is clearly a literary technique that is found all throughout the Old Testament.

God explained it in this way so it would be better understood by the primitive mind. The doctrine of God's location in the temple was already a divine, established fact.

== God clarifies Himself by saying first that He can see you and you can't hide and secondly that he fills heaven as well as earth. (omnipresent)

And to declare such a theological notion is anachronistic and makes no sense given the well established Jewish notion of Yahweh enthroned in Heaven. The second sentence is not a "clarification" at all.

== Just because you have to watch the news to see what is going on in other parts of the world, doesn't mean that is the way God works as well.

Having found yourself incapable of responding to your dilemma, you try to force words in my mouth. That is not my position, nor does it resemble anything I've said. You and Johnny are the ones declaring a theological point from these verses, so you two are the ones obligated to prove your interpretation is tenable. I have sense demonstrated that it makes no sense at all once one understand the Jewish background.

You want to insist God "fills everything" in the most literal sense because it helps you reinvent what "the Bible reveals." But you absolutely refuse to address the implications of this assertion. Want me to relist them?

1) How does this not make God pantheistic? Johnny argues by assertion (as always) and insists it isn't pantheism without explaing why.

2) How does this not contradict God's transcendence? If God's being literally "fills everything" as you keep implying, then God is not transcendent. Your theology interpretation of scripture puts God in Hell as well as in Heaven. Is it safe to say your God is in Hell?

3) The text doesn't say how God fills the universe. In what sense is this so? You insist ontologically, but the context says no such thing, but instead points to God's awareness. He is aware of everything that happens, and in that sense He is everywhere. This should not be that difficult to deduce.

I know you so terribly want the text to say God's being exists "everywhere" but the painful fact remains. It doesn't say that.

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Kevin W. Graham  writes,

God explained it in this way so it would be better understood by the primitive mind. The doctrine of God's location in the temple was already a divine, established fact.

God explained that he is a "God at hand" ... it is true that God is most High ... it is true that God is transcendent ... explain the words "God at hand".

You and Johnny are the ones declaring a theological point from these verses, so you two are the ones obligated to prove your interpretation is tenable.

Jer 23:23 proves the interpretation with the words "God at hand".

1) How does this not make God pantheistic? Johnny argues by assertion (as always) and insists it isn't pantheism without explaing why.

The Christian God is not pantheistic because the Christian God is the creator.

2) How does this not contradict God's transcendence? If God's being literally "fills everything" as you keep implying, then God is not transcendent. Your theology interpretation of scripture puts God in Hell as well as in Heaven. Is it safe to say your God is in Hell?

It does not contradict ... Using John 15 I have shown it does not contradict.

3) The text doesn't say how God fills the universe. In what sense is this so? You insist ontologically, but the context says no such thing, but instead points to God's awareness. He is aware of everything that happens, and in that sense He is everywhere. This should not be that difficult to deduce.

It's context says such a thing ... the verse says "God at hand".

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I would like to say to Paul O, that God is not a man, he is an exalted man. To speak of him blatently as just a "man" imo, is somewhat disrespectful. It is more proper to refer to him as "Man of Holiness" or an exalted man as He is refered to in the Book of Moses and in the teachings of latter-day prophets.

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John Russell  writes,

Thanks for the response, Johnny. I still have a lot to learn about the Trinity, obviously. 

To learn more about the Trinity you might goto the following thread:

The Trinity

Is it possible for the father to testify of Jesus, as a Being independent of Jesus, and still be in the person of Jesus? From Jesus' comments in Mark regarding the Second Coming, it is obvious that the Father has information that Jesus does not. How is this interpreted in a Trinitarian context? Do you have some good references on the topic?

Below are some Catholic Church teachings related to this issue. Goto the link below and find the associated paragraph number:

Find teachings of the Catholic Church by paragraph number

- Jesus Christ possesses two natures, one divine and the other human, not confused, but united in the one person of God's Son. (CCC481)

- Christ, being true God and true man, has a human intellect and will, perfectly attuned and subject to his divine intellect and divine will, which he has in common with the Father and the Holy Spirit. (CCC482).

- Christ enjoyed in his human knowledge the fullness of understanding of the eternal plans he had come to reveal. [Cf. Mk 8:31; 9:31; 10:33-34; 14:18-20, 26-30] What he admitted to not knowing in this area, he elsewhere declared himself not sent to reveal. [Cf. Mk 13:32, Acts 1:7] (CCC474).

Below are simliar links but in a different format:

Find teachings of the Catholic Church by topic

Teachings of the Catholic Church (Vatican)

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I would also add that it is quite clear that in its Near Eastern context, the word selem or "image" conveyed a degree of divinity upon human beings.

The exalted view of humanity accomplished through the word selem in Genesis 1:26-27 is evident through an analysis of cognate expressions from Mesopotamia.

In Akkadian, the Semitic cognate appears as a designation for kings who have apparently reached a divine status as physical representations of deity:

O King of the world, Salam d Marduk atta "you are the image of the god Marduk": when you are angry with your servants, we suffer the anger of the king our lord, but we also experience the mercy of the king (SAA 8 333 rev. 2-6).

Who now stays in the dark much longer than

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John 4:24 - God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

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Benji, based on what MOST NT manuscripts contain, your quote should have read:

John 4:24 - God is Spirit...",

and NOT:

"God is a spirit..."

The definite article "a", seems to have been a late addition to the text.

This remind me of the statements / warnigs of the Prophet:

"We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly...", AF #8

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Actually, I was just quoting the King James Version which is one of the "standard works" according to the Mormon church. I personally prefer the NIV which is a much better translation. How ironic that you are criticizing the KJV and advocating the NIV. Either way, you are avoiding the issue at hand which is the fact that the Bible says God is spirit and not a glorified man.

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Oh Goody, Another Trinity topic !, Yummy !. Sorry I am Late. Which Trinity is being discussed : Western, Eastern, Economic, Essential, Modalistic/Sabellian, Social, Monarch, Trithiestic, ?. And who gets the award for the correct form/version as presented in scripture from immediate post Biblical Times till present ?. Thanks !.

Mormon Cristian you are correct there is no "A" in the greek. No indefinate article in the greek, its describing one of GOD'S Attributes =Spirit, not his totality of Nature/Being. Even the late Catholic Scholar [Recognized as the worlds leading Authority on John's Gospel in his Day] stated as such in his Anchor Bible Commentary on John 4:23-25. Grace.

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GOD is also Light/Love according to John, these are clear action metaphores for actions of GOD, not describing nature as I have read from non LDS commentaries from my local School of Theology in my area. Grace.

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Actually, I was just quoting the King James Version which is one of the "standard works" according to the Mormon church. I personally prefer the NIV which is a much better translation. How ironic that you are criticizing the KJV and advocating the NIV. Either way, you are avoiding the issue at hand which is the fact that the Bible says God is spirit and not a glorified man.

Don't tell that to certain KJV ONLY Advocates that venture here periodicaly, them thare are fighten words to them partner !. Grace/Peace.

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