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Forum LockedAllah, God... and more Christian/Muslim questions

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 12:02
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 
I respectfully disagree, the Torah and the Brit Hadashah (New Testament) have numerous references referring to Jesus as the Son of God, his virgin birth and his divinity. I thank you not to assume that I am a Catholic as I am not and the Pope does not represent me nor do I recognise his authority. The earliest Christians have always from the start believed in the Jesus as manifestation of God, his virgin birth, his Messiah-ship. It is in the scriptures.
The Jewish Torah? I would like to hear about it! I mentioned the pope because his position wasn't once the one he has now or he had in the medieval era. Do you know the Arianism? It is a christian movement like those of the Nestorians. They didn't believe that God and Jesus are one person. So to say Christians did believe he's the son of God is not correct, because we have no sources for it. We just have the view of Paulus and the later Evangelists. It is the same with the virgin birth. That's not original.
 
Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 I'm assuming you've never even taken the time to read the scriptures or contemplated serious study. I'm also assuming your information is all recycled second-hand information from destractors and hear-say about Christians believe in.
I don't know if I know the bible as good as you. I grew up in an protestant family and I also got confirmation. I am often surprise that I do know a lot more than a lot of self-called good christians. But you're right. I watch the story from those of a historian, not those from the point of theology. I do like to know and not to believe.
 
Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 Your problem is that you assume we made up these teachings centuries after Jesus when really the Ecumenical councils of Nicaea and Chalcedon were a confirmation of Christians believed in for centuries already. What was required was a formal statement of belief and the elimination of heresy since church organisation was still in its infancy and had only recently acquired ecclesiastical stability under Constantine I's reign.
There were a lot of christian movements, even short after the dead of Jesus. All call them christians. The original group surrounding the family of Jesus lost his influence very quick. So what's the real story of Jesus and his teaching? All christians can't be right, isn't it?
 
Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 
Taken out of context, that is one hell of a sentence
 
Ah, but I assure you my friend, nothing is taken out of context when the context itself is consistent - checked and balance by intense scrutiny of translation. Muslims may find it hard to reconcile the idea that One God is Three persons, but is an understandable difficulty. God can do all things, he is not limited by our percieved logic. He is beyond the fullest definition and exists outside of our percieved parameters of understanding. What knowledge we have is just a mere blink. :)
 
By the way, I think it's remarkable that Jesus is a prophet of Islam, the christian view of Mohammed is not that positive.
 
Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 I know that Jesus is accepted by Muslims, but that is only because it is "their version" of Jesus and acceptable to the teachings of Islam by denying his Godhood and divinity. Do you expect us to respect Muhammed in this regard then when he has basically attacked the fundamental core of Christian belief. So really, how does that make Christians look bad?? It doesn't you're being unreasonable expecting us to accept a Prophet who contradicts our own beliefs.
I did not want to take i out of context. It is just a fact, that not all christians belief in trinity. I just wanted to figure that out.
 
Originally posted by Nestorian Nestorian wrote:

 As the apostle Paul himself said in the letter of Galatians: "If a person or an angel from heaven were to come down from heaven and give you a gospel different than that which we have taught you, last him be accursed"
This are very strong words. I hope those angels weren't god-send. That would be his free-travel right down to his christian hell. Perhaps he didn't listen to Jesus: Those who want to be the first will be the last ones!Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nestorian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 14:56
Clap The Jewish Torah? I would like to hear about it! I mentioned the pope because his position wasn't once the one he has now or he had in the medieval era. Do you know the Arianism? It is a christian movement like those of the Nestorians. They didn't believe that God and Jesus are one person. So to say Christians did believe he's the son of God is not correct, because we have no sources for it. We just have the view of Paulus and the later Evangelists. It is the same with the virgin birth. That's not original.
 
Yes, I am aware of Arianism. I am aware there were disparate views of who Jesus before the councils. I am simply saying that the beliefs as confirmed by the councils existed beforehand and not manufactured at that time.  I am not denying that other contrary existed, I am simply saying that the Orthodox teachings we have today did not simply come out of thin air......since they were confirmed at the councils which meant they had prior currency beforehand in the Christian communities. The purpose of the council was to establish a standard statement of faith to combat heresy and contrary views which had existed alongside proto-Orthodoxy beliefs.
 
The apostles themslves qualify and testify that Jesus is the Son of God as Mathew and John themselves were attested disciples of Jesus.
 
All it takes is one person to decide to dismiss the Gospels as reliable accounts to make this discussion pointless really. I accept the Gospels, you don't - what else is there to discuss in that regard then?
 
The Torah gives us a very scintillating piece of information Big%20smile
 
Proverbs 30:4 NLT version.
"Who but God goes up to heaven and comes back down? Who holds the wind in his fists? Who wraps up the oceans in his cloak? Who has created the whole wide world? What is his name-and his son's name? Tell me if you know!"
 
This is an explicit reference to the idea that God has a son.
 
 There were a lot of christian movements, even short after the dead of Jesus. All call them christians. The original group surrounding the family of Jesus lost his influence very quick. So what's the real story of Jesus and his teaching? All christians can't be right, isn't it?
 
Not all who call themselves "Christian" are Christian. I can myself the Caliph of Baghdad for all I want, but theres no credibility to it. You're assuming that the family of Jesus was important in Christianity. Read the New Testament, there was no hint that the relatives of Jesus had any disproportionate influence in the early church at all. Heck, Mary isn't even mentioned outside of the Synoptic Gospels.....
 
All we have is the Letter of James, and even his epistle doesn't reveal anything of his stature or influence.
 
You're right, not all Christians can be right. That was the purpose of the councils in the first place. To reiterate, confirm what was previously taught against heretical movements, sects and offshoots of which Arianism was one.
 
I did not want to take i out of context. It is just a fact, that not all christians belief in trinity. I just wanted to figure that out.
 
I have never disputed that fact. I acknowledge that not all Christians believe in the Trinity. But like I said, not all who call themselves "Christian" are Christian. I was simply irked by the implication by some people that the teachings we had today were simply manufactured at the councils without precedent.
 
There are several Apocryphic writings which run contrary to the orthodox teachings of the councils that are used by heretical/offshoot groups which deny the Trinity.
 
This are very strong words. I hope those angels weren't god-send. That would be his free-travel right down to his christian hell. Perhaps he didn't listen to Jesus: Those who want to be the first will be the last ones!Wink
 
Those words are meant to convey the need to be humble. After all, did he not wash the feet of his disciples. Did he not say those who seek to the greatest (first) have to the ones who serve and therefore out themselves (last)? The last shall be first, and the first shaill be last.
 
Yes, they are strong words. And well....Paul had a very strong personality...hahahahaha.
 
I don't know if I know the bible as good as you. I grew up in an protestant family and I also got confirmation. I am often surprise that I do know a lot more than a lot of self-called good christians. But you're right. I watch the story from those of a historian, not those from the point of theology. I do like to know and not to believe.
 
I am neither an expert on the Bible or a theologian. I approach my scriptures with as much cynicism and scrutiny as any atheist. That is probably why I am a sort of black sheep amongst even my own Christian friends. I can't simply accept anything without scrutinising it. I'd say I'm pretty obnoxious as a Christian! I'm disputatious by nature!
 
Unlike you though, I never grew up as a Christian. I was never in a Christian family. My first religious contacts were Chinese Spiritualism and Islam. I was born in a Muslim country and my early friends were Muslims. So, I didn't accept Christianity just because someone told me so, it was a conscious choice.
 
Although, I've never had any problems with the Trinity though as a new person. But oh well, each person has their individual circumstances.
 
I can appreciate the viewpoint of historian, as I have a Bachelor's degree in History and Political Science Clap
 
One thing we can agree on is Christians will never come into agreement with Muslims about Jesus........but it is fun to discuss and clarify as I do with my Muslim friends as much as I can.
 
I'm bowing out. I'm not interested in converting anyone, nor am I seeking to convert LOL


Edited by Nestorian - 31-Aug-2008 at 15:02
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 18:30

I agree with you that there were different christians befor e.g. Nicaea, even the orthodox one. So if you are a historian as well, you have to look for evidence. The evangelists didn't meet Jesus. The apocryphic letters were written sometimes written of people who met him. But even there we don't know their intention. In the beginning the Christians were a Jewish movement, not an independent religion. This changed with the Jewish revolt and with Paulus. It seems that he gave the christian religion a complete different direction. That's the time were the early christian groups lost their influence. But besides the "Paulus"-way there were different beliefs that all saw themselves in the descendance of Jesus. That Konstantin decided for the orthodox religion had nothing to do with right or wrong, just with power. So the orthodox and now the catholic maybe right but mustn't.

Interesting part of Thora! It would be great to know something about the context of it and the time of its appearance. By the way. Archaelogists have found female sculptures that let argue the jewish god once had a wife like Astarte. So why not a son. The problem is that the Jewish religion is not as old as the bible tells us, I mean this with a view on monotheism. Perhaps the jewish religion is a work of the babylonian captivity. So God's son gets a complete different type then.

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 18:40
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

Do you know the Arianism? It is a christian movement like those of the Nestorians. They didn't believe that God and Jesus are one person. So to say Christians did believe he's the son of God is not correct, because we have no sources for it. We just have the view of Paulus and the later Evangelists.
 
Well, first off, the Arian argument was primarily temporal and etiological rather than ontological. The position of Arius was simply that "there was a time when he [the Logos] was not". It was later carried into an ontological argument by the neo-Arians. And Christians have always believed in the divinity of Jesus, as well as his status as the "son of God"; even the Arians did.
 
Quote It is the same with the virgin birth. That's not original.
 
Of course it's not original; like many things in the Christian faith, it's based on Old Testament prophecy.
 
Quote I don't know if I know the bible as good as you. I grew up in an protestant family and I also got confirmation. I am often surprise that I do know a lot more than a lot of self-called good christians. But you're right. I watch the story from those of a historian, not those from the point of theology. I do like to know and not to believe.
 
It might help if you brushed up on the history of the ante-Nicene Church a bit. It is a period so distorted and prone to pop-history that it is difficult to discuss without a solid foundation.
 
Quote There were a lot of christian movements, even short after the dead of Jesus. All call them christians. The original group surrounding the family of Jesus lost his influence very quick. So what's the real story of Jesus and his teaching? All christians can't be right, isn't it?
 
Ah, which is why we must follow the line of Apostolic Tradition, as well as the history of the Church very closely. If you study patristics, many of the answers will come. And the true Faith is contained in the one holy catholic and apostolic Church, the Orthodox Church. If you wish to discuss this specifically, I will refer you to the Greek Orthodoxy thread.
 
Quote I did not want to take i out of context. It is just a fact, that not all christians belief in trinity. I just wanted to figure that out.
 
All Christians do, in fact, believe in the Trinity. Simply applying a label to oneself is not sufficient to actually own the label. Acceptance of the symbol of Nicaea-Constantinople is the minimal requirement to authentically wear the term "Christian" -- it is the doctrinal fence beyond which we dare not stray (took that from somewhere).
 
Quote This are very strong words. I hope those angels weren't god-send. That would be his free-travel right down to his christian hell. Perhaps he didn't listen to Jesus: Those who want to be the first will be the last ones!Wink
 
Well, that was precisely his point: if anyone, man or angel, proclaimed a different Gospel, it was false. Bear in mind that there are fallen angels as surely as there are fallen men. And the first/last passage doesn't really have any bearing on this specific part of the Pauline corpus.
 
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How is Chrisitianity a jewish sect?????? Christian means follower of Christ.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 18:51
Originally posted by beorna beorna wrote:

I agree with you that there were different christians befor e.g. Nicaea, even the orthodox one. So if you are a historian as well, you have to look for evidence. The evangelists didn't meet Jesus. The apocryphic letters were written sometimes written of people who met him.
 
Actually, different scholars say different things about which writers actually knew Christ. Generally the only people who say that the apocryphal authors did and the writers of canonical Scripture didn't either have an axe to grind or a fiction book to sell. There is no complete consensus on the dating of the canonical corpus, but the preponderance of evidence suggests initial manuscripts at an early date that were augmented by the communities left by the Apostles.
 
Quote In the beginning the Christians were a Jewish movement, not an independent religion. This changed with the Jewish revolt and with Paulus. It seems that he gave the christian religion a complete different direction. That's the time were the early christian groups lost their influence. But besides the "Paulus"-way there were different beliefs that all saw themselves in the descendance of Jesus. That Konstantin decided for the orthodox religion had nothing to do with right or wrong, just with power. So the orthodox and now the catholic maybe right but mustn't.
 
The above "analysis" of Constantine is simplistic nonsense, and I really do suggest that you research the topic in a bit more depth. The assertion that the earliest Christians were a Jewish community is completely correct, and no serious scholar would deny it. They met in synagogues, and immediately after the death of Christ they were still observing the Mosaic Law. That said, the requirement that Gentile Christians adhere to the Law was settled, not by the Jewish revolt, but rather by the Council of Jerusalem, when the Church at Antioch asked the Church at Jerusalem -- the Council of the Apostles -- to examine the issue as it related to Paul's missionary work. The Apostles came to a consensus, and even James, who was the head of the Jewish faction in Christianity, agreed to the definition.
 
Quote

Interesting part of Thora! It would be great to know something about the context of it and the time of its appearance. By the way. Archaelogists have found female sculptures that let argue the jewish god once had a wife like Astarte. So why not a son. The problem is that the Jewish religion is not as old as the bible tells us, I mean this with a view on monotheism. Perhaps the jewish religion is a work of the babylonian captivity. So God's son gets a complete different type then.

Aye, there is one manuscript that I know of that speaks of a consort. Interesting topic, and if you can provide some material it would make for a wonderful thread. Smile That said, it is believed that the Jewish religion existed in recognizable form from around the time of Abraham. It is believed that the period of the Babylonian captivity represents a redaction and codification of earlier beliefs, not a complete revision. There were several other such periods of redaction, both earlier and later than the Exile. I don't see how any of this means that "God's son gets a complete different type," but I may not have understood the statement.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mercury_Dawn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 21:12
For along time prior to going to Iraq, I largely accepted the view that Islam's god was the same as the Christian and Jewish god, but I've come to a few conclusions that have lead me otherwise.

First off, I am a Catholic, but almost Protestant at times. My spiritual mother is Greek Orthodox, and I do have a more than basic understanding of greek philosophy. And before Sept. 11, I already knew a lot of Muslims, and even had a pen pal from Malaysia who was one. I do not, still to this day, have ANYTHING against Islam, and if my brother said, 'I'm converting to Islam', my reaction would be that same as if he said, "I'm converting to Lutheranism or the Coptic church'. I would congratulate him, but warn him to make extra sure about it in this case.... cause they sometimes kill people who change their minds later on (hence why if I ever have kids, they will be forbidden to convert till the age of 18.... they can go to the Mosque all they want, but they better be damn sure of it, and no one is sure of anything prior to 18 (if even then)..... hence why parents have control over them up till then)

Having said this, I couldn't help but think about Jesus and the good Samaritan, and Jesus indifference to the taxation of a pagan roman government while I was guarding a bunch of Shiites on a pilgrimage, watching them beat themselves from time to time, hoping Sunnis wouldn't rise up out of the fishfarms in scuba gear and mow them down on their journey south.

The Muslims claim that the Koran won't allow for other faiths to interfere with their religious community, that they must be a sovereign power in and of their own, as Medina was, and concepts of Jihad. The Christians DID have the crusades, but it wasn't written anywhere to do that, and that happened a good thousand years after. Jesus didn't urge a uprising, he pretty much said, 'Hey, we got bigger issues to worry about here', such as your individual sins, or recognizing others were more good and noble than ourselves, as in the good Samaritan. Christianity is not a religion of Jihad, or even of Crusades.... it a pacifist religion, or at least to the degree possible. Jesus even went so far to accept crucification from a sham court with political motives over urging a rebellion or uprising. I honestly do not see this in Muhammad. He fled, set up a desert outpost, built a army, and conquered, and established a religious state.

Secondly, Jesus was known to skip and bend the rules when it came to matters of salvation and redemption. He did not refute the old laws, but rather said, in the case of the woman of committed adultly about to get stoned "He who is without sin should cast the first stone". The result of this is no one did through it, cause they all knew deep down inside, they were just as much of a turd as she was, and instead of her dying as a criminal and sinner, she had her eyes opened, and changed her ways. Many Muslims..... no, I do not see them doing this. I know there are some liberal judges out there, but I also know their are some birdbrained ones who can't see farther than the text they memorized. I honestly don't know the relation of the Sharia to the Koran, other than I am 20 times more suspect of the Sharia than the Koran in being a complete sham.

Also, I am finding Muslim sacrifice questionable as well. I am no member of PETA, but both me and the Jew from my unit though it was pretty much bull. It wasn't a sacrifice of the best they had, and it wasn't for their salvation, but rather, more of a technique to get into heaven. They said something about when they sacrificed a animal (which they only did once a year) the animals helped them rise above the flames of hell. Obviously, we didn't quite catch what he was saying, and I am sure there was a beautiful story behind what he was trying to tell us (the sacrifice happened IN the base, we had a small mosque there for the Iraqi electric workers, who are pretty nice people in all honesty).

I was also told by a Iraqi that the Koran said the I had three gods, which was news to me and everyone else. Not a Christian among us had three. We counted on our fingers...... one. The revelation that he next said was that One was the Mother, The Father, and the Son. This impressed me much, given the keen insights. (I couldn't get my hand on a Koran in Iraq, believe it or not.... command only letting Muslims have it.... for reasons that have since become obvious with the occasional redneck mutilating it or shooting it after his buddy dies..... but at the time I didn't realize that, only after getting out did I comprehend this hearing about some dipbrain doing it) I do not know what part of it said that, when I went to the mosque in Basic Training in Georgia, the only part we read was the book on the Cows, and half of that exploration was dedicated to explaining what Jinn were.... so it may or may not say it in there, if anyone knows where, tell me.

Basically, I think it is complete bull now to say it is the same god. The god of the Christians wasn't actively seeking a religious state, recognized the exceeding good in others over members of his own faith, and could accept a PAGAN overlordship, because the concern of the faithful wasn't to them, but to their salvation. And in the end, this payed off, cause the militarily stronger pagans broke down spiritually and followed. Islam conquered, and had difficulty to this day of convincing many even in Iraq and Iran, surprising to me, of converting. Christianity didn't take over in a night, but we didn't start off in a position of overwhelming force either. Siwa, a desert oasis in Egypt, didn't even convert till the 12TH century, and there were still many strong Coptic communities on the upper nile till the 19th century. In Iraq, you have Chaldeans, Catholics, Mandeaens, even satan worshippers (Malik Tauk), and Iran has variation of them as well, plus Bahai-ist and Zoroastrians. And I know the Muslims don't like them, cause they were trying to kill them while I was there, but they kept going.

I thought it was pretty amazing until I started to question Islam while watching those pilgrims black and green flags go by. People don't react to antagonism very well, and that is the main strength, and mortal weakness of Islam. It's why they are mostly limited to brutal desert lands, where the sun will kill you quick. You gotta be mean and coordinated to survive, like the desert nomads of Ibn Khaldun. In America, Islam isn't much different in operations from Christian churches. You could take them as a separatist religion like the Jehova Witnesses or the Mormons who claim to be Christians, changed everything up and have deeply unorthodox beliefs. Mormons added and changed the bible to fit their vision, just as Muhammed did (but by no means to the same extent)..... but I can tolerate Mormons here..... just as I could tolerate Muslims here. We are of the same culture, when thanksgiving comes around, we all help the poor families, if you are sick, we take pity and try to help, homeless, we try to give shelter. It is for this reason that I think Islam in America is going to outlive Islam in the middle east.... they are not cruel people here, they are one of us, and because of this, they can go on for thousands of years with minimal friction. I don't see this happening in the totalitarian, zealot driven middle east, Islam has already created offshoot religions, it's only a matter to time till one of them continue the Jihad against their forefathers.




This is my opinion.... and I respect the faith and beliefs of others, and would never stand in the way of them. Please understand this, I am not asking anyone to follow or believe the above, it's just how I see it, but as men grow older, their ideas are in flux, and I may not follow this in 20 years, or even in one year, but at this moment, it's how I see it, and it's from my experiences, observations in ONE part of the Islamic world and in America, and my reflections on my experiences and grappling with questions. Fill free to point out inconsistencies or mistaken views on my part, I'll try to avoid egotistical resistance here.


Edited by Mercury_Dawn - 31-Aug-2008 at 21:15
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote beorna Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 21:56
I guess it's my fault. well all started with the trinity. My statement was, that trinity isn't a common christian belief, but those of a huge majority. It was Arius, who thought Jesus as subordinated to God. It's the problem of homousie and homoiusie. But also monarchianism, Tritheism and Adoptianism do not go confirm with trinity. In the case of Adoptianism Jesus is not the son of God, but adopted or chosen. We can find these in the bible in e.g. Ps 2,7 and Sam 7,14 where the son of God is a chosen human being. In Hos 11,6 and Gen 6,2 the whole people of Israel is mentioned as sons of God respectivly honorable Jews. Jesus is also mentioned as son of Josef of Nazareth, sometimes firstborn son of Mary. In other scripts, e.g. from Qumran but as well in Mark and Luke he is mentioned as Messiah (maschiach) which is translated in septuaginta as christos. A maschiach is in the Tanach not a son of god but a chosen man. The whole story of Jesus birth is linked with that. His descendance from the house of David (allthough he's from Nazareth), so Mary and Josef had to travel to Bethlehem, his birth at the time of a special constellation of stars(?), Herodes attempt to kill him. It#S interesting, we know so much about his youth, but not the date of his birth or that of his dead. So the most of his youth, e.g. in Thomas, is perhaps fiction. There is no sign that he was seen as the son of god at those early days. Even his disciples called him just Rabbi.
And the logos isn't basicly Jewish tradition too. It's probably hellenistic. So this could be a result of the hellenistic group among the Jerusalem christians under Jesus brother Jacobus.
It is correct that there was a concil in the 40th. But the Jerusalem group was still existing.  In 66, four years after the death of Jacobus, they had to go to Pella, as a result of a jewish revolt they did not support. After 135 they were unimportant. But their belief was already haretic even in the beginning of the 2nd century.
So if Muslims don't understand trinity they aren't the first ones. There were christians as well that didn't understand or believed it. We know a lot about the biblical Jesus. The question is, is this biblical Jesus equal with the historical one. I am not sure about it.
 
Let me explain what I meant with the point "...complete different type... I think it was hard to understand what I meant. Sorry. Of course the Israelites had a religion before the babylonian captivity. The question is, was it like that religion we know from the bible. Are there e.g. two older Gods, called El and JHW or even more? By the way. I think it's interesting that IAH in Egypt is moon. It's also interesting that probably the Jewish god(s) had a wife or wifes. So the question is when did Jewish monotheism start. Greek and Roman gods e.g. had sons. So why not the jewish ones. I don't know where the citation was from, so I asked for the context. So that's why I mentioned the possibility that a son of god could come from a polytheistic era. But I do believe that the citation of a son of god can be seen in the way I told you above, as a chosen man and not a devine person. Perhaps it is now a bit clearer what I meant.
 
So what we know about the historical Jesus is that he was the son of Mary, that Josef was perhaps his father but at least Mary's husband. He appeared about 28 as religious leader. He saw himself probably as a Messiah and rebelled against the Jewish establishment. His teaching stood on the Thora as base. That establishment was responsible for his ending around the year 30. All the rest is hearsay or belief.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Mercury_Dawn Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 31-Aug-2008 at 22:13
Yeah, I think the trinity issue is just more or less trying to reconcile greek philosophy with Christianity. I have no concern for it. There is a church in Columbus, Ohio, greek Orthodox, that has enlarged, and they build the new church next to and over the old one. The turned the old one into a bookstore, but you can see the guy who painted the picture of god up on the wall put three human figures there, I suppose representing the trinity, and made the middle one have a triangle over his head, representing the trinity..... so you ended up with FIVE people up there. I call the one on the left Bob, and the one on the right Ed. Bob, Ed, and God just sitting up there, chillin, enjoying the air conditioner.

I think it's silly to think of god having a body to begin with, what's the point of being in human shape prior to creation? Or even afterwards? Some stuff wasn't really thought out, and we stumbled in the stupid era of the later empire. But this is the least important part of Christianity, a people who should be looking after their own salvation and living in brotherhood and helping those in need.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Nestorian Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 01-Sep-2008 at 08:40

I agree that the Trinity was not accepted by all Christians.

It just seems funny that after centuries of existing with Christians that the Muslims still misrepresent our doctrines and attributes teachings we've never taught (since the councils).
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Turenne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 14:05

Well, some of the most respected christian philosophers and experts were actually big believers of the Trinity.  Think of people like Augustine of Hippo.  People did think those little theological points were worthy of a lot of trouble considering that the roman and orthodox churchs were capable of arguing over bread...



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Afghanan Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 14:21
Originally posted by pekau pekau wrote:

I tried not to mention this, but here it goes.
 
There are some theories that say that Christian and Muslim God are the same, but one side became corrupted and another stayed pure. For Muslims, Bible is the manipulated form of God's word and vice versa, except Bible for Muslims is called Quran. Since I never had a chance to read Quran... I have yet another question for Islamic believers...
 
1. About the Islamic Churches... they all have this Crested moon shaped symbol, like Christian chruches have symbol of crosses. What does crested moon mean to Muslim?
 
Nothing.   The Turks made this symbol prevalent to Europe and it was used to symbolize Islam.  Its actually an ancient Pagan symbol similar to the origins of the cross.
 
Quote  (I noticed that some Muslims add this statement "peace be upon him" everytime when the word Prophet Muhammad is mentioned in the text. Is it just for the text, or in verbal statements as well? Is it neccessary to add this statement even for non-believers, or just Muslims?) introduced Islam. I thought Muhammad banned paganism.
 
It is said in regards to all the Prophets mentioned in the Bible and in the Quran, and in the Old Testament. 
 
Quote  According to the Bible, God did not want total obiedence from human beings. Granted, he wanted obiedence, but if that was the case... He would just make puppets. (Just my idea, I have no clue how He thinks.) He said that he wanted to build relationship with human beings. God is love statement is mentioned many times in the Bible.
Now, is that the same thing to Islamic teachings? I heard that total strict obiedence is demanded... so I jumped into the conclusion that Allah wants complete obiedence only. He punishes and awards the souls, but Allah is distant, separated from commoners like human beings because he is too great.
 
Islam (this is my opinion, others may or may not agree with me) basically means submission which is just like the Natural Laws (we know as Physical sciences) also have their own rules.  The Quran has many mentions of nature, of how birds tend their young, of how plants grow, how the sun and moon come up and down, how the rain falls, etc, etc.   What this all boils down to basically is that these natural laws that Allah has created for the entire Earth and all its living organisms.    Similarly, Human beings must also live by rules, but God gave us a choice to think for ourselves.  The Quran is a guideline to keep yourself on the right track and to not stray too far away.  Its mentioned that Mohammed (PBUH) said its better to be on the straight path rather than too far to the left or too far to the right and that balance is the ultimate goal. 
 
Islam always tries to maintain a balance.  That is why the rich are supposed to help the poor, and its stressed many times by Muhammad (PBUH) and in the Quran that a Muslim who sleeps full while their neighbor is hungry is not a Muslim.   That is also why injustice is a big rousing point for Muslims around the world. 
 
Strict obedience is not demanded, because there is no compulsion in Islam.  If you believe in Islam, you must believe there is a day of judgement where you will be tried for your sins.  Its mentioned in the Quran that men can be led astray and may never ask for forgiveness their entire lives...but it equally mentions the fate of those people in the afterlife.   
 
 
 
 
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote es_bih Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 15:01
God in the Qu'ran wants you to choose whatever you want to do or believe, basically freedom of choice and belief is a concrete belief in the Qu'ran. There is God, and there is God's word whether you choose to follow that or learn about it, or whether you want to reject it after hearing is all up to the individual. 

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Turenne Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 15:16
I think it is possible that one of the reasons why we picture that Islam is more ''agressive'' than christianity is because it was not created in the same climate.  Christians has inherited a feeling of persecution from its birth, even though it soon became a dominant force, while Islam was born into a position of power (*I am aware of all the conflicts that the Muslims had to fight to reach that point, but the fact remains that the Muslim prophet died as the leader of his people and ruler over vast lands, while Jesus was executed).
 
I just think that this must have affected the psychology of the members of both religions and many experts, such as the Canadian of Lebanese origin Sami Aoun, have claimed that the fact that the Muslim nations have been into a position of weakness for the past two centuries has been something quite hard to accept for members of a religion with a philosophy based on victory.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JanusRook Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 21:08
Allow me to interject myself into this discussion, I so hate coming across things so late as those who know me will verify, but I digress.....

Quote Basically, I think it is complete bull now to say it is the same god. The god of the Christians wasn't actively seeking a religious state, recognized the exceeding good in others over members of his own faith, and could accept a PAGAN overlordship, because the concern of the faithful wasn't to them, but to their salvation.


Actually the whole conclusion to Christianity is the fact that God is trying to place a religious state on earth. When the end times come we won't have a democracy or a kingdom or a dictatorship, we will have a kind of theocracatic anarchy that has no rulers because there will be no need for them. The difference though is that in Christianity we cannot bring it about by force but we must do so by cooperation and with grace.

Quote And the logos isn't basicly Jewish tradition too. It's probably hellenistic. So this could be a result of the hellenistic group among the Jerusalem christians under Jesus brother Jacobus.


The Logos as the third person of the trinity wasn't defined very well in the embryonic church. It is a hellenistic concept but it wasn't known in the time of Jesus it only came about in it's modern form till about 200 years later.

Quote
I think it's silly to think of god having a body to begin with, what's the point of being in human shape prior to creation? Or even afterwards?


God probably wasn't in human shape prior to creation....(although does God exist outside of creation or is he coterminous with it?) Anyway the reason God is represented artistically as a human is because he chose to become man and for that reason Jesus is the only material form he has. He is represented as being aged to signify that he is the "father" of the trinity as opposed to the son who never achieved that age in his human lifetime.

Quote God in the Qu'ran wants you to choose whatever you want to do or believe, basically freedom of choice and belief is a concrete belief in the Qu'ran. There is God, and there is God's word whether you choose to follow that or learn about it, or whether you want to reject it after hearing is all up to the individual.


Then what is the justification that fanatics use to rebuke those that reject Islam or those muslims who choose to stray from Islam. If Islam gives you a choice then why does it say in the Quran that the punishment for conversion to another faith is death?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 22:08
Quote And the logos isn't basicly Jewish tradition too. It's probably hellenistic. So this could be a result of the hellenistic group among the Jerusalem christians under Jesus brother Jacobus.
Originally posted by Janus Rook Janus Rook wrote:

The Logos as the third person of the trinity wasn't defined very well in the embryonic church. It is a hellenistic concept but it wasn't known in the time of Jesus it only came about in it's modern form till about 200 years later.
 
Well, first it is important to understand that the term logos/Logos is extremely loaded, and can mean a variety of different things. We Christians, as Janus has pointed out, use the term to refer to the Son, who is co-eternal with the Father, and who created the world (among other reason, this is why we use the term to refer to the Son, cf. John 1). Second, the use of the term extends back far beyond the Christian era, which it seems everyone agrees on. Third, precursors to Christian Logos doctrine existed in abundance in the Hellenistic Jewish communities, and was present during the early Christian era, as the Jewish scholar Philo of Alexandria demonstrates. The concept was certainly known in the time of Jesus; it was ill-defined in the embryonic Church. Justin Martyr, represented a watershed, Irenaeus another, and Eusebius an incorporation of the term into a broader Christian historiography.
 
Originally posted by Janus Rook Janus Rook wrote:

God probably wasn't in human shape prior to creation....(although does God exist outside of creation or is he coterminous with it?)
 
Hm. Perhaps this would help. The first term in parentheses, which remains constant, refers to the nature shared by the three persons of the Trinity; the second term, which is variable, refers to the personal aspects by which each person relates to the whole, as well as to the created order:
 
God the Father exists outside the created order (as uncreated and unbegotten), God the Son exists outside of the created order (as uncreated and eternally begotten), and the Holy Spirit exists outside of the created order (as uncreated and eternally proceeding). Thus, according to orthodox Trinitarian theology, the Trinity cannot be said to be coterminous (sharing points of beginning and end, generation and termination, etc.) with anything, because it does not admit of bounds or points of generation and termination. The nature shared by the three in one is uncreated and eternal. Arius, and later his successors in the fourth century, of course, would have disagreed vehemently.
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 23:03
Originally posted by JanusRook JanusRook wrote:



Then what is the justification that fanatics use to rebuke those that reject Islam or those muslims who choose to stray from Islam. If Islam gives you a choice then why does it say in the Quran that the punishment for conversion to another faith is death?
 
I wish people would get their facts straight instead of assuming fanatical positions themselves via bold statements that are inevitably wrong. To repeat, there is no death warrant for apostates in the Quran. It does not say that there is, ever was or will be. The fanatics, on the other hand, create all kinds of laws unto themselves. They always have, they still do and, most likely, will continue to do so.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote JanusRook Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 23:15
Quote I wish people would get their facts straight instead of assuming fanatical positions themselves via bold statements that are inevitably wrong.


I'm sorry I guess I was just repeating a common misconception that I too shared. If not then where is the death warrant found? In one of the Hadiths? In some heretical book? I'm sure there is some legitimacy to the claim since it is a quite common theme in anti-Islamic people against fanatics.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Akolouthos Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 23:24
Originally posted by Seko Seko wrote:

Originally posted by JanusRook JanusRook wrote:



Then what is the justification that fanatics use to rebuke those that reject Islam or those muslims who choose to stray from Islam. If Islam gives you a choice then why does it say in the Quran that the punishment for conversion to another faith is death?
 
I wish people would get their facts straight instead of assuming fanatical positions themselves via bold statements that are inevitably wrong. To repeat, there is no death warrant for apostates in the Quran. It does not say that there is, ever was or will be. The fanatics, on the other hand, create all kinds of laws unto themselves. They always have, they still do and, most likely, will continue to do so.
 
I think the disconnect, which many non-Muslims view as a problem, is the intricate interconnection between the secular and the religious in the Muslim world. That is to say that Christians have always had a very different -- albeit evolving -- concept of the relations between the Church and the State. A greater degree of separation has generally been present in Christian lands, even during the Constantinian era, than has been the case in the Muslim world. In essence, while Christianity and Islam both view themselves as being in a state of "war" with the world, their views of the world bear significant dissimilarities. This, incidentally, is the reason, as I understand it, for the division of the world into different spheres relative to whether or not these spheres have embraced Islam. Thus, in Islam, the sin of apostasy can easily be viewed as a crime against the social fabric of the state ruling the geographical region in which this sin was committed. We may compare this situation to the exercise of the power of the state against heretics on behalf of the Church that was often practiced in Christian kingdoms until the sixteenth century -- the only real difference being the degree to which the secular and religious concepts are wedded. Here's an excerpt of an article written by the Grand Mufti of Egypt which may help to clarify the issue:
 
Originally posted by Ali Gomaa Ali Gomaa wrote:

Freedom of Religion in Islam

The essential question before us is can a person who is Muslim choose a religion other than Islam? The answer is yes, they can, because the Quran says, “Unto you your religion, and unto me my religion,” [Quran, 109:6], and, “Whosoever will, let him believe, and whosoever will, let him disbelieve,” [Quran, 18:29], and, “There is no compulsion in religion. The right direction is distinct from error,” [Quran, 2:256].

These verses from the Quran discuss a freedom that God affords all people. But from a religious perspective, the act of abandoning one’s religion is a sin punishable by God on the Day of Judgment. If the case in question is one of merely rejecting faith, then there is no worldly punishment. If, however, the crime of undermining the foundations of the society is added to the sin of apostasy, then the case must be referred to a judicial system whose role is to protect the integrity of the society. Otherwise, the matter is left until the Day of Judgment, and it is not to be dealt with in the life of this world. It is an issue of conscience, and it is between the individual and God. In the life of this world, “There is no compulsion in religion,” in the life of this world, “Unto you your religion and unto me my religion,” and in the life of this world, “He who wills believes and he who wills disbelieves,” while bearing in mind that God will punish this sin on the Day of Judgment, unless it is combined with an attempt to undermine the stability of the society, in which case it is the society that holds them to account, not Islam.

All religions have doctrinal points that define what it is to be an adherent of that religion. These are divine injunctions that form the basis of every religion, but they are not a means for imposing a certain system of belief on others by force. According to Islam, it is not permitted for Muslims to reject their faith, so if a Muslim were to leave Islam and adopt another religion, they would thereby be committing a sin in the eyes of Islam. Religious belief and practice is a personal matter, and society only intervenes when that personal matter becomes public and threatens the well-being of its members.

In some cases, this sin of the individual may also represent a greater break with the commonly held values of a society in an attempt to undermine its foundations or even attack its citizenry. Depending on the circumstances, this may reach the level of a crime of sedition against one’s society. Penalizing this sedition may be at odds with some conceptions of freedom that would go so far as to ensure people the freedom to destroy the society in which they live. This is a freedom that we do not allow since preservation of the society takes precedence over personal freedoms. This was the basis of the Islamic perspective on apostasy when committed at certain times and under certain circumstances.

-Akolouthos


Edited by Akolouthos - 18-Sep-2008 at 23:26
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Seko Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Sep-2008 at 23:28
Thanks for your acknowledgement. Now, onto informing the masses...
 
Yes, many practicing muslims are confused and ignorant of the variety of Islamic principles and regulations themselves. Sacriligiously multitudes of muslims adhere to hadiths and get into all kinds of theological trouble themselves over it. That being said, hadiths do mention death as a source of punishment for apostates. So do some of the Tafsir (commentaries) of the Quran, but not the Quran itself.
 
Reaching higher knowledge is a journey we all love to take. Many muslims, as well as, non-muslims could always use a refresher course in Islam in order to get things up to par every now and then. Unfortunately, the masses act like sheep most of the time. Rarely do they confront their own masters in order to seek knowledge. Muslims have a problem there. Many are yes men and not enough are pure thinkers. But we shall always hope for enlightened progess.


Edited by Seko - 18-Sep-2008 at 23:44
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