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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #60 on: June 14, 2013, 05:58:53 pm »

 My confusion is with the notion that the body is the soul. As you suggest people have different understandings of what that entails, I, mine and you, yours.

The "soul" is the person who is attached to the brain that resides in the body. When brain death occurs, the person has died. Everything that makes that person who they are, is in the command centre of the brain. Souls do not exist apart from the body because the brain is part of the body.

The formula in the Bible is simple....a body + breath (spirit) = a soul. Every soul is unique.

Adam "became" a soul when God began the breathing process. (Gen 2:7) He was not "given" a soul. Do you understand the difference?
When the breath (spirit) goes out of a body, it dies. All thought processes cease. (Psalm 146:4) There is no planning, no work, no emotions, no activity whatsoever in the grave (Sheol, hades) where everyone goes. (Eccles 9:5,6,10)

The brain is the first to be affected by lack of oxygen. The cells die and the person can become brain damaged beyond repair when it is deprived of oxygen. Death or permanent disability soon follows if oxygen is not restored quickly.

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JW's  believe that the soul is the body and you have clarifies that it is more than just the body as you allude to mind and personality and whatnot. My position is that through your clarification you have just delineated what a soul is, as it is now mind, personality and body. What I am suggesting is that by the differentiation of the operative components of a human being (mind, personality, body) you have left open the door to possibility the the soul has multiple parts, i.e., mind, personality, body and that these parts have different significance and different eventualities pursuant to scripture and therefore can't be generalized as, simply, a soul.

The multiple parts are all components of one soul. It does not live on after death. There is nothing in the Bible about an afterlife for disembodied souls because there is no such thing as a disembodied soul. The soul is firmly attached to the body. That is why resurrection is necessary in order to bring people back to life. The personality of that person is restored in a new body.

The Bible says that souls eat, have blood in their veins and breathe. Animals are said to be souls, yet there is no mention of any of them inheriting everlasting life because of Jesus' sacrifice. The blood in their veins is like the blood in ours....we breathe the same air....like us, it is what keeps them living.

Blood is used in the Bible as being synonymous with life. The lifeblood carries oxygen to all the vital organs of the body, keeping us all alive. Breathing is what keeps the process going. Without the breath (spirit) the body, along with the soul perishes.

The atonement sacrifices in Israel were a reflection of that. Animal blood was used to prefigure Christ's blood. The difference being that animals were sacrificed often as a constant reminder of the ultimate sacrifice that was to come. Christ had to offer his blood only once.

Israel's law regarding the taking of human life was literally "soul for soul"....what did this mean? Think about it from the point of view of those who believe that the soul is immortal. How does that work? Without trying to work falsehood into that simple law, it means "a life for a life". Those who unlawfully took the life of another person, paid with their own life (soul.) There was no punishment beyond the grave in Jewish thinking.

There is future life, but not immortal life ever offered to those who will be earthly subjects of the kingdom. Humans were at the beginning, subject to death if they were disobedient. That will never change. 
Only those who will rule with Christ in heaven are given immortality.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2013, 08:41:09 pm by Jem »
"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #61 on: June 14, 2013, 08:23:27 pm »
No Biep, I am not one of the "chosen ones" who have the "heavenly calling". I have not experienced a spiritual rebirth as one who will reign with Christ in heaven.
But it is not just about reigning with Christ.  There are two kingdoms, of darkness and of light.
Those who are not reborn cannot even see, let alone enter, the Kingdom of light.  They remain forever in the kingdom of darkness, where satan is the god.

I am not 'chosen' to be a ruler or priest in the kingdom Biep...but I hope to be a subject of that rulership. I am ecstatic at the prospect of having a perfect government to rule the earth....isn't that what we all long for? The Revelation given to John was of such a future...."And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying: “Look! The residence of God is among human beings. He will live among them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them. 4 He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death will not exist any more—or mourning, or crying, or pain, for the former things have ceased to exist.(Rev 21:3,4 NET)

An earth cleansed of all unrighteousness, governed by its Creator is an exciting prospect and one that we were meant to have from the beginning...it will yet become a reality. My heart testifies to it.

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I understand you preach the Kingdom - so do you then preach something you cannot even relate to yourself?

I relate to the kingdom with all my heart! The "good news" is that corrupt human rulership is to cease. It will not be given up without a fight, but the fight is not ours.

" For it is right for God to repay with affliction those who afflict you, 7 and to you who are being afflicted to give rest together with us when the Lord Jesus is revealed from heaven with his mighty angels. 8 With flaming fire he will mete out punishment on those who do not know God and do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus. 9 They will undergo the penalty of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his strength, 10 when he comes to be glorified among his saints and admired on that day among all who have believed—and you did in fact believe our testimony." (2 Thess 1:6-10 NET)

Jehovah's "saints" or "holy ones" are not "all who have believed". They are a finite number (144,000) who make up the kingdom with Christ as Chief Administrator.

The Christian scriptures were written "to" and "for" these "holy ones"....the "elect" or "chosen ones". We cannot choose this calling just by becoming Christians. There is a great multitude seen apart from the 144,000 attributing salvation to God and to the Lamb. (Rev 7:9,10,13,14)

What sense does it make to have a government in which all are kings and priests?

There is a "first resurrection" for those who are chosen for this assignment. The kingdom's rulership lasts for 1,000 years. (Rev 20:6)

The kingdom "comes" ready or not. Most will not be ready because they are expecting something else. (Dan 2:44; Matt 24:36-39) The kingdom is not an internal experience but an "administration" of human affairs in the hands of Christ and his "joint -heirs" from heaven over the earth. (Eph 1:8-14; Rom 8:14-17)
Those redeemed by Jesus' sacrifice will live forever as subjects of that heavenly kingdom on earth.

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The coming Kingdom can be dated almost to the minute.  Jesus said it was near, and the apostles stated it was there and they were in it.
The rulership of the kingdom comes in two phases. Paul said it best I think...

"He delivered us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, by means of whom we have our release by ransom, the forgiveness of our sins" Col 1:13, 14)

The first expression of the kingdom rulership of the Christ occurs when people accept Jesus as their king and redeemer. A transference takes place then and there, when Christ begins to rule in their heart, delivering them from darkness. But the physical manifestation of the kingdom is when it takes over rulership of earth's inhabitants in a real way. The healings and the resurrections that took place in the first century were a foregleam of what was to take place on a grand scale on earth under Christ's rulership.

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Now read Luke 22:17-20.  Jesus doesn't drink the fourth cup of the seder meal, because He won't drink wine till the Kingdom comes.  That means the seder hasn't finished for Him yet.  Also, there was no slaughtered lamb.

They had made preparation for the Passover like any other. There is no mention of the absence of the Passover lamb at this celebration with his apostles. Where do you get this idea from?

The first-century celebrants of the Passover customarily ate it while lying on their left side, with the head resting on the left hand. This explains how one of Jesus’ disciples could be “reclining in front of Jesus’ bosom.” (John 13:23)
Wine was not used at the Passover in Egypt nor was there any command given by Jehovah for its use with the festival. This practice was introduced later on. Jesus did not condemn the use of wine with the meal, but he drank wine with his apostles and afterward offered a cup for them to drink as he introduced the Lord’s Evening Meal, the Memorial. (Luke 22:15-18, 20)

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Then Jesus takes our sins upon Him, in Gethsemane.  He spiritually dies - the Lamb is slaughtered.  There is darkness, and light again - "between the evenings" (Exodus 12:6).

Again you are reading into scripture what it does not say.

Jesus died physically, not spiritually. His life was given in exchange for Adam's. If Jesus did not die, the ransom was not paid.

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Then Jesus, who previously had refused wine, suddenly asks for it (John 19:28) - the sign of the Kingdom!

When Jesus was on earth, the Roman soldiers drank a thin, tart, or sour, wine known in Latin as acetum (vinegar), or as posca, when it was diluted with water. This was likely the drink offered to Jesus Christ while he was on the torture stake. Jesus refused the sour wine drugged with myrrh (or gall) that was presented to him to alleviate his suffering. (Mark 15:23; Matt 27:34; compare Psalm 69:21.) However, just before he expired, he received plain sour wine from a sponge when it was put to his mouth. (John 19:28-30; Luke 23:36, 37)

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So John 19:28 describes the moment that the Kingdom opened up for us.  From that point on there is no more preaching of the Kingdom (except explanations to Jews who had to be informed as to its true nature).

Huh? ??? Are you serious? Was the training that Jesus gave his disciples not to be continued after his death?
His main role on earth aside from his sacrificial death, was his ministry. He was a preacher who trained his disciples to do what he did. (Matt 10:11-15) The preaching of the "good news of the kingdom" was to be continued right up until the end of the present age. (Matt 24:14; 28:19,20)

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Jesus could keep His promise to the criminal (Luke 23:43), as Paradise, which is (in) heaven (it remained there when creation left heaven, which is why it cannot be found here on earth) was accessible again.

Sorry? ??? Again you are stating things that the Bible does not say. The first paradise was here on earth. It was a place that God deemed to be the perfect home for his material creations.  Adam lost that paradise for himself and all his children, but  Jesus came to get it back for us. Where does the Bible say that "creation left heaven"? Who told you this?

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This Kingdom is our only hope of salvation.  If you have no access to it, you are lost - whatever people around you may say -, and without rebirth you have no access to it.  Please, don't take this lightly!

What make you think I take anything lightly?  :-\

I have a very good grasp of what the kingdom is and what it will accomplish on earth.
Without rebirth, it is not possible to enter the kingdom, that is quite right, but I am not "chosen" to be part of the ruling body. I am more than content to be a subject of that kingdom and have the best rulership that God can offer me whilst the human race is brought back to it original sinless condition.

Did God create the earth and this incredible universe for nothing? He created the earth to be inhabited "forever". (Isa 45:18; Psalm 37:29; Eccl 1:4)

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If your doctrine doesn't give you access to the Kingdom (something that you can directly test in your own life - John 7:17), it will not save you either!

I am certain of my doctrine and the kingdom as God's arrangement for reconciliation with himself and the human race. (2 Cor 5:18,19) God placed the first humans on earth in a beautiful setting and told them to 'become many and fill the earth with their kind'. This was before they sinned, so they were not in heaven.

They were also told to "subdue" the earth by extending the boundaries of the garden and transforming the whole earth into a paradise.
What a wonderful prospect was placed before the first humans. This was God's first purpose and this is what will be realized in the end...all will go back to the way God intended it to be in the beginning. Lessons are learned and precedents are set for all eternity. No rebel (either human or angelic) will ever be able to interfere with God's purpose again.

Do we imagine that the restoration prophesies in Isaiah are about heaven? (Isa 11:1-10; 65:18-25)

"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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God Is Good

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #62 on: June 14, 2013, 08:38:09 pm »
We are all judged on what we know and what we are taught.

If an atheist chooses to reject God and then dies, he doesn't get a second chance to come to know God.
During his whole life, he had plenty of chances to come to know God and instead, chose to reject God, so when he stands before God, God will show him all the times he rejected him.

We don't get to live a life of sin and then complain after we die that we don't want to be punished.

However, lets assume a person lives on a remote island and never ever heard of God and then he dies.
He can not be judged for rejecting God, because he never did reject God.

dawkins was asked what he would do if after he dies and finds out God is real, he replied that he would ask God why he hid himself from him, however dawkins is making a very invalid claim.

God has relieved himself to dawkins and dawkins chooses to ignore him and all the evidence and has no excuse that he can give God.
Many atheists believe that once they die and find out God is real, they will have worthy excuses to give God.

God will simply tell them all, "you rejected me and I know you not"

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Biep

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #63 on: June 15, 2013, 06:42:27 am »
Jehovah's "saints" or "holy ones" are not "all who have believed". They are a finite number (144,000) who make up the kingdom with Christ as Chief Administrator.
Sorry, I am getting very confused here.
In Revelation 6-7 we see three groups: the souls under the altar, the 144.000 from Israel, and the innumerable multitude from the nations (Goyim).  The first and last are in heaven, and this is before the resurrections.
I would hold these have no physical bodies, as there has been no resurrection yet, so these would be 'disembodied souls' in your parlance (I see that differently, as some hold palm branches, et cetera).  They are all clearly conscious, too.
Given the innumberability, I would hold that these are simply the believers - not some select subgroup of them.  They 'sleep', in that their behaviour doesn't affect their body, which is rotting in the grave.  Their relation to their earthly bodies is like someone dreaming.
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Those redeemed by Jesus' sacrifice will live forever as subjects of that heavenly kingdom on earth.
Yes - because the curse that pushed creation out of heaven will be gone, and the earth will be back in heaven, in the Kingdom of light.  But anyone who cannot enter that Kingdom (as ruler or subject) will then be in the outer darkness.
And whoever isn't reborn cannot enter or even perceive the Kingdom of light, and will stay in the darkness forever.
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"He delivered us from the authority of the darkness and transferred us into the kingdom of the Son of his love, by means of whom we have our release by ransom, the forgiveness of our sins" Col 1:13, 14)
Yes!  This is the wonderful reality of the Christian.  And the non-Christian, not perceiving this Kingdom, considers it foolishness.
This step is already impossible without rebirth (of both soul and the spirit).  The third part of the rebirth, the body, comes at the resurrection, whether we live or are deceased, which is why our bodies cannot yet be in heaven.
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There is no mention of the absence of the Passover lamb at this celebration with his apostles.
That is true, but the meal is described in some detail, and  Jesus being the Passover lamb it is unlikely that the lamb would not have been mentioned.
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Wine was not used at the Passover in Egypt nor was there any command given by Jehovah for its use with the festival.
True, but clearly the Talmudic custom was followed here.  You yourself pointed out the reclining already, which was a very recent addition copied from the Romans, but also the article in "the cup after the meal" points to the established routine of the four cups.
Jesus states that when He'll drink again, the Kingdom will have come.
Quote from: Biep
Then Jesus takes our sins upon Him, in Gethsemane.  He spiritually dies - the Lamb is slaughtered.  There is darkness, and light again - "between the evenings" (Exodus 12:6).
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Again you are reading into scripture what it does not say.
All right, it may not have been exactly then, but it seems likely given Jesus prayer.  Spiritual death, absence from the Father, is attested when Jesus asks why God has left Him.  It was somewhere between His "let this cup pass" and His "why have you forsaken Me", and I have no problems putting in anywhere within this range.
This is the real, the important death.  Physical death happened after all was accomplished (John 19:28).

So we see the order:
  • Real, spiritual death (absence from God);
  • All is accomplished;
  • The Kingdom comes;
  • Jesus drinks wine, the code signal for his disciples that the Kingdom has come;
  • Jesus dies physically.
Likewise we are brought to life spiritually, but our physical resurrection is still pending.

I hope to address the remainder in a later post.

The one important thing is: whoever is not reborn will stay in the kingdom of darkness.  God wants something better for you!  And that is not on an earth which still lies outside heaven, away from God's presence!
« Last Edit: December 08, 2013, 01:52:30 pm by Biep »
-- Biep
I tend to post and run, but always hope to return eventually.  Don't hold your breath, though.

I have very little energy at the moment, so don't expect much of me right now.

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lapwing

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #64 on: June 15, 2013, 08:52:46 am »
Jem,
Do you believe the 144,000 are drawn from the 12 tribes of Israel as written in Rev 7:4-8?
For by one sacrifice Jesus has made perfect forever those who are being sanctified.

"Those who are still afraid of men have no fear of God, and those who have fear of God have ceased to be afraid of men"
"If the world refuses justice, the Christian will pursue mercy"
Dietrich Bonhoeffer

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Biep

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #65 on: June 15, 2013, 02:00:01 pm »
I think one main misunderstanding is the inclusion of physical death.  In salvation history, physical death does play no role whatsoever.
  • The death that Adam incurred the day of his sin was spiritual death.  He didn't die physically that day, and in fact God is careful not to use the word 'death' in Genesis 3:19 when He speaks of physical death.
  • The sacrifice of Jesus is His spiritual death, not His physical death.  All was accomplished before He died physically.
  • The death Jesus' sacrifice saves us from is spiritual death.  We are not physically dead right now, and accepting His offer doesn't prevent us from physically dying at all.
John 11:26 doesn't promise 'no physical death'.

When understanding salvation history, or the real meaning of 'life' and 'death', forget about physical life and death.
-- Biep
I tend to post and run, but always hope to return eventually.  Don't hold your breath, though.

I have very little energy at the moment, so don't expect much of me right now.

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #66 on: June 15, 2013, 06:58:19 pm »
Jem,
Do you believe the 144,000 are drawn from the 12 tribes of Israel as written in Rev 7:4-8?

Hi lapwing,

If you remember that the reason why Israel was chosen as God's nation in the first place, was as a personal reward for Abraham. His faithful course is recorded for us as an example of pure faith and unswerving devotion to his God. Even when he did not understand why God asked him to do certain things, (like leaving a comfortable lifestyle in a large and prosperous city to the life of a nomadic tent dweller in destinations unknown or being asked to sacrifice his beloved Isaac) he obeyed without question, such was his trust in his heavenly Father.
Jehovah told him,
"I will surely bless you and make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as the sand on the seashore. Your descendants will take possession of the cities of their enemies, 18 and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because you have obeyed me.” (Gen 22:17,18 NIV)

His progeny however, were no more righteous than any other humans on earth. The only thing that made them different was that they alone had God's laws to govern their lives and as a dedicated nation, all were under obligation to obey as Abraham did.

Their history reveals a roller coaster ride of sin, punishment, repentance and forgiveness over many centuries. This provided a written record of God's dealings with a people that he claimed as his own. When they broke his laws, he punished them, sometimes very severely, giving us a first hand account of how He dealt with disobedience and false worship.
 
When they repented, he forgave them and poured out blessings upon them, again giving us a record of how God responds when his people do obey him.

When Jesus came, the very ones who should have haled him as their king, rejected him as a false Messiah and had him executed as a common criminal. They did this because they had been influenced by their appalling shepherds who were more concerned with their position and lifestyle than in welcoming correction.
 
Jesus had said before his death, “Jerusalem, Jerusalem, you who kill the prophets and stone those sent to you, how often I have longed to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her chicks under her wings, and you were not willing. 38 Look, your house is left to you desolate. 39 For I tell you, you will not see me again until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.’”

This was the background of Judaism....they had a history of being incorrigible.

The house of Israel was left 'desolate' and abandoned because they had been given exclusive rights to become a "kingdom of priests and a holy nation" as followers as their Messiah, but they spurned him, misled into believing his powers came from the devil.

"When Pilate saw that he was getting nowhere, but that instead an uproar was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd. “I am innocent of this man’s blood,” he said. “It is your responsibility!”

25 All the people answered, “His blood is on us and on our children!”
(Matt 27:24, 25)

They got their wish.  :(

Only those who embraced Jesus as Messiah from among the fleshly Jews came into the new covenant.

The Abrahamic covenant however, was an everlasting one. How could God abandon the fleshly Jews without breaking his covenant with Abraham? Simple! Jehovah redefined what it meant to be "Jewish". (Matt 3:9; Rom 11:17-24; Gal 3:28, 29)
Paul wrote....
"A person is not a Jew who is one only outwardly, nor is circumcision merely outward and physical. 29 No, a person is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is circumcision of the heart, by the Spirit, not by the written code. Such a person’s praise is not from other people, but from God." (Rom 2:28,29 NIV)

"It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. 7 Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” 8 In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring." (Rom 9:6-8 NIV)

"The Israel of God" (Gal 6:16) is not the fleshly nation, but is a spiritual nation made up of both Jews and Gentiles. This is the "Israel" mentioned in Revelation Rev 7:4-8. The list differs slightly from the lists of Jacob’s sons (including Levi) who were the tribal heads of natural Israel. (Gen 49:28)

Jerusalem’s temple and priesthood and all the tribal records of natural Israel were permanently destroyed by the Romans; lost forever in 70 C.E, long before John had his vision in 96 C.E. But more important, John received his vision upon a background of the developments from and after Pentecost 33 C.E. In the light of such events, John’s vision of those standing on the heavenly Mount Zion with the Lamb (whom natural Israel had rejected) revealed the number of this spiritual Israel of God to be 144,000 “bought from among mankind”, not just from among natural Israel.  (Rev 7:4; 14:1, 4)
 


"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #67 on: June 15, 2013, 08:58:49 pm »
Sorry, I am getting very confused here.
In Revelation 6-7 we see three groups: the souls under the altar, the 144.000 from Israel, and the innumerable multitude from the nations (Goyim).  All three are in heaven, and this is before the resurrections.
I would hold these have no physical bodies, as there has been no resurrection yet, so these would be 'disembodied souls' in your parlance (I see that differently, as some hold palm branches, et cetera).  They are all clearly conscious, too.

You are only confused by you own complicated understanding of these verses Biep. There are not three groups...only two.

In John’s vision, he saw 'the souls of those slaughtered because of the word of God and because of the witness work' they used to have, crying out: “Until when, Sovereign Lord holy and true, are you refraining from judging and avenging our blood upon those who dwell on the earth?”

The answer they received shows that there is a definite time for the vengeance to be carried out, namely, when “the number [would be] filled also of their fellow slaves and their brothers who were about to be killed as they also had been.” (Rev 6:9-11) Theses are members of the 144,000 seen symbolically crying out for justice, like the blood of Abel was crying out similarly for justice when murdered by his brother. (Gen 4:10) Revelation is full of symbolism, "signified" to John. (Rev 1:1,2)

"Signified" means "the meaning or idea expressed by a sign, as distinct from the physical form in which it is expressed." Signs are not always expressed as realities, but as symbols representing realities.

The Scriptures reveal that this execution of God's vengeance begins with the desolation of 'Babylon the Great', then proceeds to come upon “the wild beast and the kings of the earth and their armies.” (Rev 19:1, 2, 19-21)

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Given the innumberability, I would hold that these are simply the believers - not some select subgroup of them.  They 'sleep', in that their behaviour doesn't affect their body, which is rotting in the grave.  Their relation to their earthly bodies is like someone dreaming.

You are adding your own meaning again.  ??? This is not what the scriptures say.

The "innumerability" was used in contrast to the finite number of the first group. This is simply saying that the number of the first group is pre-determined, whereas the number of the second group is not...it is left open.

It is not the individuals of the 144,000 who are foreordained but the number of them. Given that even those anointed for heavenly life can "fall away", like the apostle Judas did, just as he was replaced among the 12, so those of the 144,000 can be replaced if necessary to complete the pre-determined numbers. (Heb 6:4-6)

The "great multitude" are not a finite group and "sheep" and "goats" are not determined until Christ comes as judge....only then is their number determined.

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Yes - because the curse that pushed creation out of heaven will be gone, and the earth will be back in heaven, in the Kingdom of light.  But anyone who cannot enter that Kingdom (as ruler or subject) will then be in the outer darkness.
And whoever isn't reborn cannot enter or even perceive the Kingdom of light, and will stay in the darkness forever.

You keep mentioning that 'creation was pushed out of heaven'...where does this idea come from? It is not in scripture. Creation of the material universe and all it contains is in the physical realm. It was never part of heaven. Why do you keep insisting that it was?

Those "reborn" must become spirits in order to dwell in the presence of God. Physical bodies are shed because beings of flesh and blood cannot come into God's presence without perishing. (Ex 33:17-20)
That is what the rebirth is all about. They are reborn as spirit creatures who will rule from heaven with Jesus. These will die in the flesh and be raised "in the spirit" just as Jesus was.

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This step is already impossible without rebirth (of both soul and the spirit).

Please define what you believe "soul" and "spirit" to be according to the Bible.

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The third part of the rebirth, the body, comes at the resurrection, whether we live or are deceased, which is why our bodies cannot yet be in heaven.

Biep, there are clearly two kinds of resurrection spoken about in scripture. The first is for those who are to rule as "Kings and Priests" with Jesus. (Rev 20:6) Theirs is a resurrection to life in heaven as spirit beings.

The second is for those who will experience a physical resurrection on earth. Jesus will call such ones from their tombs to reunite them with their families under the rulership of the kingdom. This is such a simple concept, complicated to no end by Christendom's false teachings about immortal souls and everyone going to heaven and whatnot.

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There is no mention of the absence of the Passover lamb at this celebration with his apostles.
That is true, but the meal is described in some detail, and  Jesus being the Passover lamb it is unlikely that the lamb would not have been mentioned.

There is no such thing even suggested. Given that the Passover meal was the lamb, it would surely have been mentioned that the main feature of the celebration was missing on this occasion?  :-\

Quote from: Biep
Spiritual death, absence from the Father, is attested when Jesus asks why God has left Him.  It was somewhere between His "let this cup pass" and His "why have you forsaken Me", and I have no problems putting in anywhere within this range.
This is the real, the important death.  Physical death happened after all was accomplished (John 19:28).

I fail to see the significance you place on this aspect.

In Jesus asking why his Father has "forsaken" him, it is again good to consult the scriptures instead of adding our own meaning to things.

I believe that one of the main reasons for Jesus’ outcry just before he expired, was that by using these words he could fulfill a prophetic indication about the Messiah. Hours earlier Jesus told the apostles that things would happen “just as it is written concerning him.” (Matthew 26:24; Mark 14:21)

He wanted to carry out the things that were written, including things in Psalm 22. You may find it interesting to compare Psalm 22:7, 8—Matthew 27:39, 43; Psalm 22:15—John 19:28, 29; Psalm 22:16—Mark 15:25 and John 20:27; Psalm 22:18—Matthew 27:35.

Psalm 22, which gave so many prophetic indications of the Messiah’s experiences, begins: “My God, my God, why have you left me?” Hence, when Jesus cried out as he did, he was adding to the record of prophecies that he fulfilled. (Luke 24:44)

His Father would also have to withdraw from him to allow death to take place. His sacrificial death was the crowning achievement of his mission. It had been accomplished.

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So we see the order:
  • Real, spiritual death (absence from God);
  • All is accomplished;
  • The Kingdom comes;
  • Jesus drinks wine, the code signal for his disciples that the Kingdom has come;
  • Jesus dies physically.
Likewise we are brought to life spiritually, but our physical resurrection is still pending.

Jesus never died a spiritual death. How could he? Spiritual death ends in eternal separation from God and from life. Even in his tomb Jesus was not separated from his Father, who made sure no action was carried out contrary to his will and purpose. Jesus was resurrected on the third day just as he promised.

The rest of your list is your interpretation, but it does not fit how the kingdom comes or the drinking of the sour wine that was offered just before his death. I think it is more likely to be symbolic statement.

Since Jesus would not be drinking literal wine in heaven, he obviously had reference to what wine sometimes symbolized in the Scriptures, namely, joy. Being together in the Kingdom was what they looked forward to with highest anticipation. (Rom 8:23; 2Cor 5:2)

King David wrote, in song, of Jehovah’s provision of “wine that makes the heart of mortal man rejoice,” and his son Solomon said: “Wine itself makes life rejoice.” (Psalm 104:15; Eccl 10:19)

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The one important thing is: whoever is not reborn will stay in the kingdom of darkness.  God wants something better for you!  And that is not on an earth which still lies outside heaven, away from God's presence!

God never initially intended humans to live anywhere but where he placed them...and it was clearly not in heaven.
To suggest otherwise one would have to reject everything Moses wrote in Genesis.  :(

The sole reason why any human was chosen to go to heaven with Jesus was to make up the kingdom arrangement which would reconcile sinful humans back to their Father. Adam, by his disobedience caused an alienation for his children, born in sin through no fault on their part, but Jesus was sent to offer reconciliation to them through his sacrifice on their behalf. If Adam had not sinned, no reconciliation would have been necessary....no redeemer....no kingdom.

Can you see the ridiculous complexity added by Christendom to a relatively simple scenario?   :-[

« Last Edit: June 15, 2013, 09:22:06 pm by Jem »
"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Asking_A_Question

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #68 on: June 15, 2013, 09:07:39 pm »
Jem,

You've still failed to interact with my philosophical argument. :( I asked a rather basic question that only needed a yes or no (and that's all I want).  I'll pose it again: if you die and God decides to create two identical bodies both with your exact personality, then are there now two yous or are you two persons now?

Thanks.

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #69 on: June 15, 2013, 09:18:31 pm »
Jem,

You've still failed to interact with my philosophical argument. :( I asked a rather basic question that only needed a yes or no (and that's all I want).  I'll pose it again: if you die and God decides to create two identical bodies both with your exact personality, then are there now two yous or are you two persons now?

Thanks.
To tell you the honest truth AAQ, it was such an absurd question, I didn't want to dignify it with an answer.

What is the likelihood of God creating two "me"s"? If you are going to ask a hypothetical, at least make it logical or even plausible.  :-\

Identical twins are not the same person are they? They are two separate souls who share the same DNA, having been created from a single egg.  Cloning you would not make the clone into you. It would share your DNA like an identical twin, but it would be a different person or soul.

Only a "yes or a no"? You sound like one of those slick lawyers who only wants an incriminating "yes or no" to a question that cannot possibly be answered that way. You know I don't do "yes or no" answers.

What on earth is your point anyway?  ???

"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Asking_A_Question

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #70 on: June 15, 2013, 09:25:00 pm »
Jem,

It's a hypothetical.  Hypotheticals do not need to be plausible.  I'm not sure why you can't answer a simple question.

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #71 on: June 15, 2013, 09:41:56 pm »
Jem,

It's a hypothetical.  Hypotheticals do not need to be plausible.  I'm not sure why you can't answer a simple question.

I have never been interested in philosophy personally. It is useless as a tool for finding or determining truth. (1 Tim 6:2-5)

This is not a simple question; it is a ridiculous question that leads nowhere. Is that where you want this discussion to go? (Col 2:8.) You have addressed nothing of the points of discussion so far but want to take this silly question much further than was ever warranted in the first place.

Get to the point.

I will not participate in useless arguments...sorry.
« Last Edit: June 15, 2013, 09:54:36 pm by Jem »
"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Asking_A_Question

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #72 on: June 15, 2013, 09:59:58 pm »
I have never been interested in philosophy personally. It is useless as a tool for finding or determining truth. (1 Tim 6:2-5)

What?  You are seriously applying that passage?

Quote
This is not a simple question; it is a ridiculous question that leads nowhere. Is that where you want this discussion to go? (Col 2:8.) You have addressed nothing of the points of discussion so far but want to take this silly question much further than was ever warranted in the first place.

Get to the point.

I will not participate in useless arguments...sorry.

That's also a misuse of the passage. 

Nonetheless, I'm not sure why you can't answer my question.  My whole point is that if there is no continuity of person then it's not the same person.  Thus, you must believe in some continuity which is the very thing you are trying to avoid.

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Jem

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #73 on: June 15, 2013, 10:27:33 pm »
I have never been interested in philosophy personally. It is useless as a tool for finding or determining truth. (1 Tim 6:2-5)

What?  You are seriously applying that passage?
Yes I am.

Quote
Quote
This is not a simple question; it is a ridiculous question that leads nowhere. Is that where you want this discussion to go? (Col 2:8.)

That's also a misuse of the passage. 

I don't believe that it is.

Quote
Nonetheless, I'm not sure why you can't answer my question.  My whole point is that if there is no continuity of person then it's not the same person.  Thus, you must believe in some continuity which is the very thing you are trying to avoid.

Why the need to beat around the bush then?

I already answered this....from post #47....
 
As to Abraham Isaac and Jacob..."Now he is not God of the dead, but of the living — to him all are alive.”

To God, all who sleep in death are 'alive' to him. If 'all the hairs on our head are numbered' and God can name every star....what difficulty would he have in remembering the humans who have lived and died on earth?

All the men and women of faith in pre-Christian times did not get the fulfillment of the promises.

"All these people kept on trusting until they died, without receiving what had been promised. They had only seen it and welcomed it from a distance, while acknowledging that they were aliens and temporary residents on the earth"
(Heb 11:13)

There is your continuity. No one is forgotten by a God who remembers everything about everyone and has promised to restore their life. That process is as simple for God as waking someone from sleep....just as Jesus did with Lazarus. (John 11:11-14)

There is no conscious soul that survives the death of the body. Show me in the Bible where the Jews believed in an immortal part of man that departed the body at death. If it was a Jewish belief, then Jesus would have taught it....but he didn't....and neither did his apostles.



"the meek ones themselves will possess the earth,
And they will indeed find their exquisite delight in the abundance of peace" Psalm 37:11

Unless otherwise stated, all quoted material taken from WTBTS sources. jw.org

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Asking_A_Question

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Re: Where debates should be centred on.
« Reply #74 on: June 15, 2013, 10:29:41 pm »
Okay.  So if there is no continuity of the person, then God can take what He remembers about you after you die and create two identical beings and they will both be you and you will be both of them.  That's where the logic takes you.