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No "paradise" in the Greek text of Luke 23:43?


Rob Bowman

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The worst case that can be made here is that Joseph missspoke, that he should have said the word "paradise" as referenced was "a modern concept" rather than a "modern word".

Isn't it interesting to note that our friend from the I.R.R. (also known as IRReligious) is LITERALLY trying to make Joseph an "offender for a word"?

Perhaps Dan Peterson should sue for copyright infringement?

I could not agree more.

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Three short sentences (Luke 23:34, 43, 46) constitute "chatting away on the cross like he's at a picnic"?

It's the tone of Luke's additions:

"Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do."

"Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise."

"Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit"

There's nothing but peace and serenity here.

And did you miss Mark 15:34 (which reports a statement by Jesus prior to his final cry, v. 37)?

No, that's what I was referring to. "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" sounds like a cry of agony to me. Verse 37 may be another (unintelligible) cry or just a retelling of this one.

How can he commend his soul to someone who's just forsaken him? It's a total clash. There's no sensible way to merge the two stories. You have to pick one or the other.

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It's the tone of Luke's additions:

"Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do."

"Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise."

"Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit"

There's nothing but peace and serenity here.

No, that's what I was referring to. "My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?" sounds like a cry of agony to me. Verse 37 may be another (unintelligible) cry or just a retelling of this one.

How can he commend his soul to someone who's just forsaken him? It's a total clash. There's no sensible way to merge the two stories. You have to pick one or the other.

I think these verses could be used against the nicean creeds. I should start a new thread as to not derail this one.

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Jesus didn't speak Greek.

Sure he did.

Matthew 16:18

???? ?? ??? ???? ??? ?? ?? ??????, ??? ??? ????? ?? ????? ?????????? ??? ??? ?????????, ??? ????? ?|??? ?? ????????????? ?????.

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

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Sure he did.

Matthew 16:18

???? ?? ??? ???? ??? ?? ?? ??????, ??? ??? ????? ?? ????? ?????????? ??? ??? ?????????, ??? ????? ?|??? ?? ????????????? ?????.

And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

Ok.

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Ok.

Well actually it depends on what you think he was trying to say. In Aramaic he may have just said, "you are Kepha, and on this kepha", since the name he gave Simon, "Cephas", means "rock". You can't use "petra" for a man's name in Koine Greek because it's feminine, so you pick up the "pebble" vs. "boulder" subtlety, which has caused raging wars between Catholics and Protestants for all these centuries.

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In 1843, Joseph Smith made the following remarks about Luke 23:43:

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Nathair,

Let's get something straight here. Are you claiming that Elisha acted wrongly?

If we grant that this may be an example of Brother Joseph's hubris, will you grant that this does not disqualify him from being the Lord's anointed Prophet any more than Elisha's siccing a bear on some kids for mocking his baldness disqualifies him from the same position?

Yours under the standardized oaks,

Nathair /|\

No; but Jonah did, Samson did, Solomon did, Peter did, Moses did . . .

And what is your answer to that?

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Mola,

Would you also agree with me (assuming I am correct about Joseph getting the point at issue wrong) that it was rather arrogant for him to criticize the translators and modern scholars of his day, when clearly it was Joseph who did not know what he was talking about?

Not at all. Joseph said that in response to the Protestant/Evangelical belief in "justification by faith alone without works," and their use (or rather misuse) of that scripture to prove their point. Whether his "translation" was correct or not I wouldn't know; but I find no fault with his motives for saying what he said. Traditional Christianity being apostate, those kinds of errors unfortunately abound within it.

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I have a couple of questions concerning Joseph Smith

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If we grant that this may be an example of Brother Joseph's hubris, will you grant that this does not disqualify him from being the Lord's anointed Prophet any more than Elisha's siccing a bear on some kids for mocking his baldness disqualifies him from the same position?

Yours under the standardized oaks,

Nathair /|\

Or say, Samuel lying to Saul?

(Putting on my anti-Mormon blinders and looking at Samuel)

In 1 Sam 13:8 Samuel had LIED to Saul and told Saul that he, Samuel would arrive in seven days.

Saul waited the seven days, but no Samuel.

(Anti-Mormom style conclusion) Samuel couldn't be a true prophet because he lied to Saul.

AND THEN,

Samuel "hewed Agag in pieces" even after Agag plead for mercy. Now how could a true prophet do such a thing?

(Anti-Mormom style conclusion) Samuel couldn't be a true prophet because he violently MURDERED Agag.

WOW!!! Those anti-Mormon blinders are fun!!!

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Mormon Apologists have a problem with explaining what is the conclusion drawn from what doesn't seem to strictly be relevant to point out; that others had done it or done worse. Leaving you to ask yourself, what do Mormons consider the mark of a false prophet? It seems its not fallibility, its not even sinfulness. A false prophet is defined as either the prophet of a false god, or one who falsely claims God said something he didn't say. Even a prideful and ignorant prophet is still a prophet, in need of some elective redemption or a lesson in humility, he still is God's mouth piece until God removes him.

Hence, a supposed public laps in his knowledge of Greek is not enough to dissuade us much. It is not clear where Joseph's "knowledge" on the matter originated. Prophets commonly use their own "modern" knowledge when they feel there is a correction in those things that they think permits the gospel to be understood and applied to "modern" people. The ancient Prophets clearly accepted a geocentric (earth centered) cosmos, a flat earth, heavens supported by four pillars, etc. Yet, God does not correct them, He sends revelation about matters of more eternal significance, those things simply get integrated in their explanations. Despite all their the inspiration, we find their knowledge is sometimes no higher than that of their contemporaries.

In this Mormon Apologetic realization, we try to explain that we need to be forgiving of prophets in the past the we perceive as being unsophisticated in both their thoughts and actions when compared to the present day expectations of how a prophet should be.

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In this Mormon Apologetic realization, we try to explain that we need to be forgiving of prophets in the past the we perceive as being unsophisticated in both their thoughts and actions when compared to the present day expectations of how a prophet should be.

That is not an LDS apologetic response. What present day expectations of what a prophet is supposed to be is irrelevant. What is relevant is what God expects His prophets to be. The apologetic response is that non-LDS Christians who point out supposed flaws in Joseph Smith which preclude him from being a prophet are also implicitly acknowledging that many whom are called prophets in the Old and New Testament fail the standards that are applied to Joseph Smith.

Glenn

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If one considers 1) what most people thought "paradise" meant in the days of Joseph Smith, and 2) what the doctrine of the church is regarding the spirit world, one can pretty much deduce what the prophet is saying.

The word "paradise" is used five times in the Book of Mormon in relation to the spirit world, or the place which spirits reside after they have departed their sojourn in mortality.

Nephi says, "For on the other hand, the paradise of God must deliver up the spirits of the righteous, and the grave deliver up the body of the righteous; and the spirit and the body is restored to itself again, and all men become incorruptible, and immortal, and they are living souls, having a perfect knowledge like unto us in the flesh, save it be that our knowledge shall be perfect." (2 Nephi 9:13) And Alma states, "And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow." (Alma 40:12)

In Joseph Smith's day, the word paradise was often, and incorrectly, associated with Heaven, our final abode, or residence, once we're resurrected. In the prophet's day, many used Luke 23:43, Jesus' words to the thief on the cross ("And Jesus said unto him, 'Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.'") to try to show that the thief went to Heaven. Thus, he was saying that this was incorrect, and that it is not the meaning of the original text. Paradeis? means "garden," most specifically, the "king's garden," a place of happiness or joy. It does not mean Heaven. Even today, the first meaning given "paradise" in the American Heritage dictionary is "The abode of righteous souls after death; heaven." The Jehovah's Witnesses believe the righteous, now in the grave, "will live eternally in Paradise." In fact, in the Luke passage cited, they believe that the comma is misplaced in most translations, and that the Lord is telling the thief today, "Thou shalt be with me in Paradise." Others believe Paradise is "a place in which existence is positive, harmonious and timeless."

So Joseph Smith was stating, for the record, that the common beliefs about what Christians thought they were reading was, in fact, quite different than the original intent of the word. Paradeis?, the garden, was a temporary place of rest -- not the eternal destination most thought. And though Alma refers to it as a place of happiness, still later prophets taught that, technically, Paradise also included the Spirit Prison, in which the unrighteous also dwelt, though there was a line of demarcation separating Paradise from the Prison, or Hell. Both, in reality, were physically located in the same place, which is the same physical place we dwell, but in another dimension.

James Talmadge states: "That righteous and unrighteous dwell apart during the interval between death and resurrection is clear. Paradise, or as the Jews like to designate that blessed abode, 'Abraham's bosom,' is not the place of final glory, any more than the hell to which the rich man's spirit was consigned is the final habitation of the condemned. To that preliminary or intermediate state, however, men's works do follow them; and the dead shall surely find that their abode is that for which they have qualified themselves while in the flesh." And Elder LeGrand Richards said: "You remember how the whole world believed that the thief upon the cross went to heaven with the Savior because He said: 'Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.' Now the men of this world, understanding things according to man's wisdom, thought he went to heaven. But according to divine truth, he went only to paradise where the Savior arranged for the gospel to be preached to him to prepare him so that he would be worthy to stand with the sanctified and the redeemed of his people."

.

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If the question is: did Joseph make mistakes? Then the answer is yes, just like all other prophets.

If the question is: Is the sectarian Protestant concept of Paradise in the 1840s what Jesus had in mind in the early first century? Then the answer is no. Joseph's basic point is correct. The ancient concept of Paradise as found in the NT and LXX is not the same as the sectarian Protestant concept in the 1840s. Do you agree?

By the way, is Paul's etymology of Melchizedek and Salem in Hebrews 7:2 correct? Does Melchizedek mean "King of Righteousness" or does it mean "My King is Zadik (righteous, just)"? Does Salem mean "Peace"? (Or does Shalom mean peace?) Do Paul's mistakes about ancient philology mean he is not a true prophet?

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