liberal vs. literal Christian

Discussion in 'Christianity' started by wil, Mar 14, 2006.

  1. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Hi Bandit, for the record I happen to agree that the resurrection of Christ is a foundational Christian belief. But, I also happen to think that the diety of Christ is a foundational Christian belief and I have never been able to figure out if you believe the same. I don't mean to debate with you, and you don't need to answer here if you don't wish, but it goes to illustrate that Christians do hold different beliefs and yet remain Christian.

    But I have long been curious about something. Why do you always refer to the death, burial and resurrection as the foundation. Why is burial important? Are you referring to the idea that Christ descended to death in order to conquer it? If you are willing to explain I've always wondered what you mean.

    peace,
    lunamoth
     
  2. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Come on now, as I indicated I answered your questions, tongue and cheek as they were. You've made what is currently an empty unsubstantiated accusation and are intending on just leaving it on the table? I thought better of you. You've indicated I am a consistent Christian basher (being the blasphemous, heretical follower of Christ that I am)....Please pick 3 of those many alleged abuses to charge me with.
    I'd like you to help me with this, I thought he refered to 'those with ears may hear' ie the parables were designed for those thinking above the average man. sort of like wake up, this is a story, yet deep and important. Sure would've have been nice if those deciiples to which he spoke to in depth had the forethought to take notes...instead of leaving it all to distant memories....
     
  3. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    because Jesus said he would be buried & Paul declared the death, burial & resurrection is the Gospel. the death burial & resurrection is mentioned in many many places. the burial has just as much paradox & meanings as his death & reusurrection. i do not leave his burial out for Jesus predicted he would be buried & things happened during that time.

    In 1 Corinthians 15:1-4, Paul is reminding the church at Corinth about the gospel when he says, "Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached to you, which also you received, and in which you stand; by which also you are saved, if you hold fast that word I preached to you, unless you believed in vain. For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received; that Christdied for our sins according to the scriptures, and that He wasburied, and that Herose again the third day according to the scriptures."

    i do not believe God turned into a man or God came through the womb & no i dont believe in the trinity or any godman doctrines. that is dogma that i do not see required to be a Christian.
    -but do you see me make issues out of it?
    no i do not.

    yes i do believe that Jesus is in the Godhead & that Jesus is the fulness of the Godhead bodily & the mediator between God & man, because the bible says so. i do not remove Jesus from the eternal Godhead...i just see it from a different POV & eternal has more than one definition that can also have a starting point as in THE BEGINNING... & move forward. God does not have a beginning. there is an extra gear & cavern travelled to see what i see with Jesus so i dont discuss what i believe concerning this in public.
    we can discuss it in private or one on one someday if you want.:)

    i did not know you can discard the Gospel of the death, burial & resurrection of Jesus & still be a Christian. that sounds like a different religion, like Islam or Judaism or Hinduism.
    his death burial & resurrection seems pretty black & white, Jesus himself being the chief cornerstone. but i suppose that does not matter either.
     
  4. iBrian

    iBrian Peace, Love and Unity Admin

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    Just as a general note, it would be great if we focused less on different personal stances, and tried to address more the issue of "liberal vs literal Christian" as a meaningful distinction. :)
     
  5. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    wil, i am not going to make issues out of all your postings. i am not spending the day going through all your old postings just to create an argument to satisfy you.
    we already went through this last year & you said you do not know how to word your beliefs & make them come across. i DONT KNOW where all your postings are & i aint looking them up but if i come across them i will certainly bring them to your attention you then.

    read the bible. Jesus told why he talked in parables to the public. the parables were not explained to the public. he explained them in private with the apostles.
    they are like baby talk with many literal hidden meanings that people do not get.

    all the disciples did was write down what Jesus taught them, parables & all. read Matt 13 again. there is a LITERAL meaning behind the parables.
    you & i are most likely not going to see eye to eye on this...so believe what you want to believe.:)
     
  6. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    here you go - use this for a guideline. i doubt people can even agree on these definitons. i see myself fitting both categories.

    Liberal
    broad: showing or characterized by broad-mindedness; "a broad political stance"; "generous and broad sympathies"; "a liberal newspaper"; "tolerant of his opponent's opinions"
    having political or social views favoring reform and progress
    tolerant of change; not bound by authoritarianism, orthodoxy, or tradition
    a person who favors a political philosophy of progress and reform and the protection of civil liberties
    free: not literal; "a loose interpretation of what she had been told"; "a free translation of the poem"



    Literal
    actual: being or reflecting the essential or genuine character of something; "her actual motive"; "a literal solitude like a desert"- G.K.Chesterton; "a genuine dilemma"
    without interpretation or embellishment; "a literal depiction of the scene before him"
    limited to the explicit meaning of a word or text; "a literal translation"
    avoiding embellishment or exaggeration (used for emphasis); "it's the literal truth"
     
  7. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Namaste Bandit, again I'd either like you to retract your accusation or find three out of the many places I blast Christians for their beliefs. but I'll not hold my breath.
    tis true we'll probably not agree, 'all the disciples wrote it down, yet very few wrote very much that we have today and what their is was written what 40 years after Jesus's death, written from memory and verbal history spanned Jesus's whole life, portions where the author was obviously not in attendance..yet very liberal with the quotes...nice to be a member of 'the club' and be able to have control of the secrets....especially when no one is around to dispute the writings.

    The above to me are historical facts, but they do not diminish the value of the writings, simply increase the knowledge of what it is we are looking at...
     
  8. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    you dont know that. no one even knows for sure or can prove any of what you just said.

    you have issues that go & go & go with Christianity AND the bible. the history, the authors, the religions, the secrets, disputing the writings, control & blah blah blah... you know you can always write your own book & make your own bible if you dont like the one that was put together by the catholics. i am not retracting nothing.

    how many books do you need to figure it out? how many writings does it take? you can read 10 biliion books written about Jesus & until it gets into your heart it means nothing.

    this thread is wasting my time. i have not learned a single thing here today.
     
  9. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    You're right Brian and I apologize. I think I got us off track by asking about personal stances. Thirty lashes and all that...

    lunamoth
     
  10. brucegdc

    brucegdc Moderator

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    Might I suggest that ALL posters, especially in this thread, re-read the code of conduct? Personal attacks are not welcome here. Brian pointed that out a while back in his subtle British manner. Being a brash Yank (albeit a transplanted Canuck), I'll be slightly more blunt. Knock off the personal attacks, folks.

    ... Bruce
     
  11. Thomas

    Thomas Administrator Admin

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    Hi Wil -

    I don't know if the terms are correct. It is apparent that I am deemed a liberal Christian if not heretical, blasphemous one by many.

    OK

    But I think, and I am biased that my view of Christianity is often times has more personal requirements than most.

    Not sure what you mean here?

    We have discussed the Jeffersonian Gospels and the omition of virgin birth, resurection, diety of Jesus, etc...

    I can accept that and have it not hurt my belief system or biblical thought at all. Even if it was proved, shown due to historical/archeological evidence that 95% of the biblical historical data were wrong, misinterpretted or even made up....wouldn't affect that I see value in the words that are attributed to Jesus.


    It would effect the way we think about the person ... for example, Christ said "I will build this temple..." and we associate that with the Resurrection. If, however, the Resurrection was 'disproved' - then his statement becomes meaningless. If 95% of the data were wrong, then what is there left, but sophistry and lies?

    For the Christian believes in the Person of Christ, or rather the Act as well as the Word. It's the actions of Christ that carry the weight, as it is how and who we are as people that carry the spiritual charisms - not what we say, but what we do ... "this people honours me with their lips, but their hearts ... " (Matthew 15:8)

    And I think this is why you face accusation. Discard Christ's actions, then his words are words to be numbered among other words, and as many will point out, many have said much the same thing ... the further you pursue this line, the more 'immaterial' Christ becomes ... and once you disassociate the words from the man, then you can interpret the words any way you like.

    It is said often that you can't pick and choose which scripture to accept and which to interpret metaphysically rather than historically.... but it seems even the literalists do.

    I agree. Fundamentalist Christians seem steeped in the vengence of the Old Testmant and ignore the message of Christ almost entirely. There are extremes of every degree. 'Born again' seem to think they'be been issued with a one-way ticket beforehand ... that's human nature ... in my Hermeticist days, I remember 'the man' observing 'these people drive like they've already made it' (I was driving a '68 5.3lt V8 Plymouth Baracuda at the time - and eventually blew up the gearbox doing standing starts)

    Again I think of all the wars that Christians have fought in, all the atrocities that have been committed by churches and Christians (I'm not singling us out, we are not alone, but we do supposedly believe in the new
    testament).


    I would provisionally agree. Christ's words and actions speak of a completely different social order, which too few aspire to - it's simply too revolutionary. Provisionally only in the sense that every ill in history seems to be the fault of Christianity, as if there was nothing else to human nature but man's belief. Also, a fair amount of propaganda - The Crusades, The Inquistition and the Burning of Witches are a case in point, but this is stuff for another discussion.

    And then I think of love your enemy, offer him your coat, judge not less ye, love your neighbor....all these have to be disregarded in order to pick up arms against someone. Sure you can find other texts, if you don't have sword sell your belongings and get one...but again...in my view anytime I see a hateful G-d, or vengeful Jesus...tis time to look at the scripture metaphysically and divine the good and love out of the works...

    Agreed.

    I think don't commit adultery means don't dilute your principles...and not committing murder includes murdering enthusiasm and creativity...in a lot of ways I read the bible to hold me to a higher standard...that is why I don't feel very liberal.

    And I applaud that. I believe the Perpetual Virginity of the Immaculata is a symbol of her fidelity and integrity to her mission, but that is why I believe she is Perpetually Virgin and intacta - like everything about Christianity, it is the spiritual become physical reality.

    I would like to highlight the above paragraph - if someone wishes to deny it, then let that person give the metaphysical reasoning why the higher cannot manifest itself in the lower - this, after all - is the crux of the question.

    Do I believe Jesus is my lord and saviour and died for my sins? Yes, but not in a literal sense.

    Physical and spiritual, see? Are you saying we are 'spiritually' saved, but not 'literally' saved? Then we are saved, but not in a literal sense ... which means in reality we are not saved? The condition of human nature is not abstract, it is a reality - thousands die of it daily - if the crucifixion seems unseemly, or unnecessary, then so does the death of 30,000 children a day in Africa, and they die for precisely the same reason that Christ died, because we don't care and we don't want to be bothered.

    If not in the literal sense, then it is an insult to humanity ... because we die, literally.

    (the question is: why do we lack the moral will to stop what we know to be wrong?)

    I believe that by learning from the way and nature of Jesus by seeing his path to becoming the Christ...

    Here's the rub - I would say that such an attitude, or such an interpretation, is the fruit of the relativism that affects the educated west, a world in which the subjective opinion in king? I might go so far as to say that Christians are told "Your rewligion can't mean that, cos mine doesn't..."

    Wil - the following paragraph reads like I'm shouting, truly, I'm not, but I am asking rhetorically ... and I am smiling ... but ...

    Who is this Christ? If not Jesus himself, a man, then who? If not a man, then what? He is not Jesus, then what is it that we are chasing? Some notion of universal consciousness? Ultimate Being? Some nebulous quality common to everyone someone happens to think worthy? The lowest common denominator of 'Agreed Good Stuff'?

    I ask because once you start down the path of relativising, then there is no stopping. God becomes like the card in a three card trick, always there when it's shown to you, never there when you turn the card ...

    But I am created man, and it is as a man that I shall find my way to God, and it is as a man that God looks for me.

    I would rather be a good man who knew nothing, than a bad man who was conscious of the universe - but then, that's nothing original.

    by not worshipping him, but attempting to follow in loving footsteps...I can do everything he did and more...if I am able to walk the walk...and I believe when he said ye are G-ds....we are the creator and the created...masters of our destiny, brothers and sisters, children of G-d, the trinity does not exist as we are all one...

    Surely to follow in his loving footsteps requires that we lay down our lives for another, without counting the cost, and wanting nothing in return ... "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends"
    John 15:13

    Unless, of course, Jesus then said, "not literally, of course, I mean metaphorically, esoterically ... but not really."

    Thomas
     
  12. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Now there's a parenthetical question that packs a punch.

    lunamoth
     
  13. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    What an...interesting thread. However, my perspective is not quite as "detailed" as some of these thoughts are.

    A Literal Christian, simply takes the Bible as well, literal. By that very nature, the Literal Christian must remain in a conservative and almost rigid stance on specifics concerning the worldly view, particularly concerning moral ethics and code. There are few shades of gray concerning morality and behaviors to a literal Christian perspective.

    Liberal "Christian" (I presume the orginator of this thread attempts to expound upon), perhaps is more accurately described as a Moderate Christian, and is in reality what most Christians, particularly in the United States, Canada, UK and Australia, could be fairly well accurately described as. The Moderate Christian's moral code of ethics and behaviors are not so rigid. The Moderate Christian is not as concerned with stance concerning the worldly view. As such the Moderate Christian tends to wander a bit along the "straight and narrow path". Often enough the "core" values of Christianity remain sound within the thinking and reasoning of the "Moderate Christian", however there is a tendency for the worldly views to distract and at times detour the Moderate Christian from the literal path as perscribed biblically.

    At the other end of the spectrum is the "Liberal" or in some cases Liberal Christian in extremis. This group uses the Christian title in name only. Along with everything else in the world, the literal concepts of the Bible are relative at best and for the most part, irrelevent and quaint. Moral and ethical code are held only as far as the individual Liberal Christian perceives them to be, and tend to refuse/refute anything rigidly imposed over their personal perspective. This group tends to use self as guide along the walk of life, and usually have a Bible as a paper weight, or art on the shelf. Scripture might be considered nice or even beautiful and poetic, but that is about the only value it has.

    So, in short Literal Christian sees life as God/Jesus centered with man as a part.

    Moderate Christian sees life as mostly God/Jesus centered but struggles with man's selfcentered nature.

    Liberal Christian sees life as Man centered with God/Jesus as an interesting abstract.

    As for Thomas' question about us lacking the moral will to stop what we know to be wrong...well that's easy. Because it counters what we desire and we therefore "will" to keep what we desire, over what is right. :eek:

    my thoughts ;)

    v/r

    Q
     
  14. seattlegal

    seattlegal Mercuræn Buddhist

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  15. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    but that is a 'liberal' isaiah the prophet...so it does not count:D

    yes i am still making a pretty good scapegoat these days.

    *heavy sigh - shakes head*
     
  16. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    this is real good Q & i think i am on the same page. but somehow i dont think moral is going to get to the root of this particular case. :)
     
  17. taijasi

    taijasi Gnōthi seauton

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    Wasn't it Dolly Parton's character in the movie Straight Talk who reminded us
    that we must "Get off the cross, somebody may need the wood"?

    andrew
     
  18. Bandit

    Bandit Well-Known Member

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    ok here are my final thoughts on all this. from what i have gathered, i think Wil is trying to explain his beliefs & that they are liberal beliefs concerning the bible & Jesus.

    so i propose this little list because i think this it what i have gathered from many different postings here & other threads. please correct them if they are wrong. i think over all this is what you are trying to say here but dont know how or are not sure how to say it- for reasons i do not know.:)

    1no virgin birth- a liberal birth
    2no resurrection
    3no literal son of God- a liberal son of God
    4no literal savior- a liberal savior
    5no blood for the remission of sin
    6no trinity
    7nothing literal in Genesis- all myth & metaphor
    8no literal righteous seed that Jesus came from
    9no literal Jonah- a liberal Jonah
    10no literal miracles/miracles are natural
    11the scriputures were changed, the Jefferson gospel is better
    12Jesus in not literally God manifested in the flesh
    13not sure on your view of the last supper, except the wine is not real blood
    14no water baptism
    15at some point Jesus traveled to India or some place in Asia
    (why i am not sure & if that is literal or liberal i am not sure)

    16you say you follow Jesus teaching but it appears not all of his teaching
    (i dont know if that is literal or liberal either)

    17open up the vaults of the vatican because there is something in there that is going to change Jesus & the Bible.?

    18if 95% of the bible were proven false, that would be a liberal false & not a literal false.

    19Bandit knows nothing about the hsitory & making of the Bible.
    INCORRECT- Bandit has put the past behind him & chooses not to keep digging up the dirt, because i cannot change the past.:)

    last but not least- we are god(s) - the creator



    Wil, i know you are into something different & that is fine for you. no, i am not going to keep telling people everything is ok because real love would not do that. blaspheme the power of God & the Holy Ghost is one thing you might do if you are not careful with the way you are seeing things, especially saying the miracles are natural or never happened- Jesus taught not to make light of the Holy Ghost & the power of God that way.
    but i have never called someone a heretic in my life. that word does not exist in my vocabulary.

    just a little suggestion for the future & i say this in love, it would be much easier if you just come right out & say what you believe instead of making everyone guess for months. even a short essay would do the trick.
    no hard feelings, just a little understanding of your beliefs & i think i got most of it right- at least some of it.:)
     
  19. seattlegal

    seattlegal Mercuræn Buddhist

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    A way to distinguish the "wheat" from the "chaff." ;)
     
  20. InLove

    InLove at peace

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    Hi and Peace To All Here,

    I find the following to be extremely relevent to the issue at hand, and worth reiteration:

    I cannot separate the Word from the One who gives it, even when (and this is another discussion) I consider that man has tampered with it. Love is bigger than man's faults.

    Yep, I am one of those annoying Christians who will insist that The Word is "layered"; that it is literal, metaphoracal, allegorical, etc. For example, does the Christ of The Revelation literally posess a double-edged sword for a tongue? My answer: If He so desires.:) But perhaps more important is what that double-edged sword symbolizes--the Truth that comes from the Word that He speaks and His embodiment of that Word displayed as well in His action.

    This is what I believe.

    InPeace,
    InLove
     

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