Hi, Brotherrr. Thanks for asking. The term "Amen" is a transliteration of אָמֵן, an adverbial form of the verb אָמַן (aman), which means "to support, affirm, to be faithful". The verb is a "primitive root" which could go back to the very formation of the early Hebrew/Aramaic language. Loan words were common in the early development of all language groups that had some contact with others. When in common usage, the word "amen" means "Let it be so", that is, agreeing with what has been said. The veb is related to the word for "truth" (אֱמֶת) which transliterates emeth, being a feminine noun formed from amen. The idea is certaintude or faithfulness. The Jewish Talmud likely used the acronym with this in mind (perhaps to add more "meaning" to the word as a statement of faith in the one they could not pronounce outright.
As for the Egyptian god Amun-Ra, this is from a merging of two other gods: Amun and the sun god Ra. From Wikipedia: "The name Amun (written jmn) meant something like "the hidden one" or "invisible"." ( Hart, George (2005). The Routledge Dictionary of Egyptian Gods and Goddesses. Abingdon, England: Routledge. p. 21. ISBN 978-0-415-36116-3). From my limited understanding of transliteration standards, the j does not reproduce the same as the a (but I may be wrong).. The point is, the meaning is almost opposite of the Hebrew word "amen".
I am sorry I did not get to this until now. I have had personal things going on that kept me from my admin duties here. I trust this reaches you in a timely manner and helps in your search for the emeth.
May Yahweh bless you in your journey.
SouthWriter (talk) 00:43, February 7, 2020 (UTC)
There is a lot of discussion on this, with basically two camps among Christians: those who believe in a "young" earth, and those who believe in an "old" earth. The latter cannot be found in the clear text of the Bible. Since it is the intent of this wiki to treat the Scriptures with utmost respect, our source on all matters is the Bible itself.
Given that Bible indicates that Jesus Christ is a trustworthy witness, it is our position to take Him at his word. He speaks of Adam and Eve being "at the beginning of the creation" on or soon after the sixth day of creation. After that, Adam is said to be 130 years old when his son Seth was born, and the pattern continues to Abraham's father Terah via Noah. Some ambiguity enters with the exact date of Abraham's birth, but from his son Isaac through his great grandson Joseph it continues, though a bit harder to figure.
Through the lists of kings, and events mentioned from the exodus and the conquest, dates can be figured before and after the destruction of the temple. At that point, secular dates can be used to show a correlation between the Bible and the rest of history. All of these dates put the sack of Jerusalem at about 3500 years after the time of Adam. Counting forward, we see Jesus to have been born somewhere around 4000 years after Adam.
The difference of interpretation between Bible students comes down to the way the accounts in Genesis are treated. The six days of creation seem to be confirmed as days of normal length by God Himself in the giving of the Fourth Commandment (see Ten Commandments, so the Earth is Biblically dated along with Adam. That point in time was a little over 6000 years ago within a margin of error of 5% (about 300 years of ambiguity).
However, many see a problem based on what modern science seems to have shown concerning the speed of light and distant places in space. Through use of assumptions based on wavelengths of light and unprovable hypotheses concerning how the universe came to be the way it is, the "age of the universe" seems to be growing longer the more it is studied. This is where the billions of years comes in. Therefore, for the most part, those findings are not considered in interpreting the Biblical record.
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Paul, you are correct, the post was by a troll. You are also right that the question is misstated, not to mention "answered" in a way as to doubt the doctrine of vicarious atonement.
In offering a response to the "question" (or objection), I will be touching on some misconceptions I see in you answer. I mean no offense in disagreeing with you.
First, the Original Post:
(1) How did Jesus pay the penalty for people's sins?
To that he asserts:
(a) The penalty for sin is going to Hell for eternity.
(b) Jesus did not go to Hell for eternity.
The question could more easily be stated: "How could Jesus pay the penalty for sin? That would indicate an appreciation for the severity of the problem. Mankind is "infected" with a condition: the default setting ever since Adam fell. The apostle Paul deals with this when he compares the "first Adam" with the "last Adam" (Jesus Christ). Theologically, this called "Original Sin". As Paul points out, Jesus represents believers the same way Adam represents all of mankind.
Now, what is the penalty for sin? Quite clearly it is death. Another way of stating this that death is the "wages" due for sin. This started all the way back in Genesis 2, where God warned Adam that to eat of a certain tree would cause death. Adam's wife Eve knew about this warning, but was tempted and succumbed to the wiles of the Devil. By God's grace, the couple did not die immediately, but were saved. God gave them coats of skin to wear, a type of the substitution that Jesus fulfilled on the cross.
Yes, Hell is a place to which unsaved people go after dying. A complete knowledge of this place did not come until Jesus and his followers taught of the conditions there. In the Old Testament the word for "hell" was Sheol, which can be translated "grave" or "pit". These words were descriptive of where the body was placed, and not much more. The New Testament word is hades, which makes a transition to place of suffering.
The point is, death comes to all people. The sacrificial system of the Old Testament was a picture of how God deals with covering the sins of His people. A substitute is used to remind the one that offers a sacrificial animal--innocent by nature--of what should have been the consequences. Jesus--innocent by nature--fulfilled that type.
Now, to you response:
You state that Jesus died "so we would have a chance of purifying ourselves so we don't taint Heaven with sin".
We are not being "given a chance" to live a godly life (assuming that is the "purifying ourselves") by Jesus dying in our place. We are in a very real way covered by His sacrifice "once and far all" (see Hebrews 9 passage cited above). While it is true that we will live a godly life, our sanctification is not a result of works making us "worthy" to enter Heaven.
The time units in the Bible are days, months and years, just like in our time. Specific numbers are given for the ages of men at the birth of their significant sons--at least up to Abraham. The ages of those before the flood may have been "rounded" or bracketed (ending in 0 or 5) when they got so old no one could remember exactly!
It might be that the years were originally exactly 12 lunar revolutions around the month at 30 days per revolution. This is because the months are never given over 30 days anywhere in the text. Five months is said to be 150 days in one place. After the flood, months are assumed the same, but calendars begin to be "corrected" when dates did not line up with expected season changes. The moon had begun to cycle at 29.5 days rather than the expected 30 days.
At the time of the Passover, the new "year" switched to spring for religious observations related to the agricultural calendar. This put an extra month somewhere around February in years that didn't have an early harvest of Barley. The feast of Trumpets began the fall harvest period in the seventh month after this new beginning.
As for the old ages, these are confirmed to be true when Jacob tells the Pharaoh that he was 130 years old, but that his forefathers lived a lot longer. Just as Jacob knew the age of his father Isaac and grandfather Abraham, so the ages of previous generations were known as history.
The reader of the Bible cannot help but admit that a straight reading of the text presents long ages for individuals both before and after the flood. Only a world-wide "climate change" type of event could reduce these ages by a factor of ten or so. That event is recorded as the Great Flood of Noah's time.
Actually, that is a theory based on certain symbols found in the Biblical narrative. The fact that there may be aspects of worship of the true God in pagan religions is no surprize. The early Canaanites had the witness of Melchizedek and the Kenites, both with close relationship with the people of God.
Please don't waste our time here. This is a place for questions, not spam. The name of God first appears in the writings of Moses, reflecting his experience in the desert in front of the burning bush. It is then inscribed upon the tablets containing the Ten Commandments. Theories are certainly worth considering, but this is a place to discuss the Bible.
In Christ, SouthWriter (talk) 02:08, September 7, 2018 (UTC)
First things first. Your "Username" is as bogus as the day you were born. For all I know, you created it just to spam this site. Since "666" is obvious code for Satan or, more specifically his minion, the man of sin, it can truly be said that one bearing that number is "out of time". I doubt if you would wish that upon yourself.
Now to the point of your post, let's get a few points out of the way. An eternity in hell is not the penalty for sin. Hades and its Hebrew equivalent Sheol are most generally the abode of the dead. The penalty for sin is death, the consequence of being a born sinner. I would advice that you read the Epistle to the Romans, especially the first half, to get a fuller idea of what salvation really means.
Your analogy is quite lame. It equates a sinner's life to a misdemeanor and the "fine" he lays out as out of proportion to the "crime". It is clear that you have not read the Bible, for there are parables there that lay out far better analogies. If you are serious about this "question", perhaps you might read the Gospel of Matthew or one of the other gospels. Most Bibles have headings to help you find these practical stories relating real life with spiritual things.
To answer your concluding "Question"--No. You are not able to save anybody, because you are not the sinless Son of God. Even if you were an innocent, faultless human being, you could only pay the penalty for one other person. You may think you are a "good guy", but this is not a game.
Thank you for your time. Now, read the Bible and get back with us when you know what you are talking about.
In Christ, SouthWriter (talk) 01:45, September 7, 2018 (UTC)
Hi, Zava, if I may shorten your Username, I am glad you have shown interest in this wiki. Please do not hesitate to contact me directly (see my profile). I have been a Christian since I was a teen -- and that is a very long time!! -- and I am retired. And so, if you need help on the wiki, let me know.
In Christ, "SouthWriter", administrator.
We are providing extra-biblical information when we provide dates based on the Julian and Gregorian calendars. Is this to be avoided? As much as I would like to provide only Biblical reckoning, the purpose of an encyclopedia or a wiki is to provide accurate information so that the reader can better understand the text.
When we provide historical context, for instance, we are providing things like location on a map and approximate dates for what happened. Sometimes these things cannot be found in the text.
That being said, I will refrain from attempting any theories as to "how" God did anything. I will stick to God's word for any clues to enlighten our readers.
Full disclosure, I am the source of Supe's consternation. If you check these articles, I have used the language of scripture for the most part. Yes, I speak of the time/space and energy/matter continua. But time, distance, fire and dust are concepts that everyone understands.
I can take out anything that might sound "semi-scientific"--though to say that the writers were not scientific is a mistake. The scientific method is based on observation, or "phenomenological language" (describing things as they look to be). The method was developed by Christians, for the most part, to glorify God by discovering how, and to some extent why, God works in the world.
From "The Creation":
I clearly based the concept of forming the universe out of "raw materials" on the text. I plan to link light and fire in the Light article. In the Day article, I did use the concept of rotation, a concept not directly "understood" in the Ancient Near East, but which is clearly taught. Should we leave the wiki open to attack by atheists and other skeptics by assuming that Moses and the other writers accommodated to their culture in "believing" in a flat earth on columns over Sheol and a dome across which the sun, moon and stars traveled?
Now, it is true that Moses probably didn't make a connection between matter and energy, but he certainly understood the correlation between distance and time. The concept of "distance" is measured by "a day's journey" in the law, prophets, Gospel, and Acts.
I agree that the information must be drawn from the Book, but I do not want to leave the impression that the Bible is so written as to not display the true glory of God and His Creation.
I am going to close this thread, so any more "discussion" will have to be with me directly. Your responses seem to be circular reasoning, starting and ending at the same place. Please read the articles on Sin, Salvation and Jesus Christ and get back to me on my talk page. I will answer your questions from the Bible there.
But, before I go, I will try to answer your objections/questions above.
God is not a man, so when he punishes it is not "wholesale" but purposeful and personal. He knows the condition of the souls of each person dealt with. Whatever the treatment, it will be in line with the "crime" against His law.
The relationship between providence and free will is a tricky one, but essentially it comes down to the omniscience of God. He knows the beginning from the end and works things out so that the right thing is done in all cases to come to the "endgame".
"Cruel and unusual" punishment is a relative thing. But our sense of what that is comes from the conscience attuned to the Law of God. God's Law sets a standard for us which He also keeps. It is "an eye for an eye" -- meaning the punishment fits the crime. Though many are punished, the punishment always fits the crime.
Your "take" on the incarnation, death and resurrection of Jesus is a false one. In Christ, God did not just "show up". He had a job to do and he finished it. After over 4000 years of dealing with humanity, "showing up" in various ways along the way, God kept his promise to Adam, Noah and Abraham. The "seed of the woman", a new start after sparing mankind, and finally the Messiah who descending from Abraham to be a blessing to the whole world, were all acts that God did for us.
No, God's punishment is not "equivalent to a parent" with a child. God's punishment is that of a King to an enemy combatant. Those who stand against the King of the universe should not expect to get away with it. However, the trials and difficulties to those who are children of God are like the punishment of a parent to a child.
The problem with your a premise is that in is false. Everyone is given sufficient evidence of God's existence. It is all around them and within them. The fact that anyone "doubts" has no bearing on this. Doubt does not diminish the evidence.
Finally, the Abrahamic faiths do not present the dichotomy you think they do. It is not that people decide for or against God, but that God chooses between people. Left to themselves, all people would live for themselves. It is quite natural to doubt when you don't trust anything beyond our own senses and condition. That is why something supernatural must first happen. God chooses and changes those who end up following Him.
Please, click on the "talk" link on my signature and let's continue this elsewhere.
SouthWriter (talk) 19:22, June 2, 2018 (UTC)
First, Have you read the articles I have twice recommended?
Strictly speaking, God seldom "outright kills somebody". In the Old Testament, he usually dealt out punishment by means of armies of men acting on their own volition. There are some places where direct action is used, but they are rare. In the final judgment, as in the great flood, many will suffer physical death, but they will live on as spiritual beings.
In asking why we should trust God rather than demand things of him, you show a total misunderstanding of who God is. God is infinite, and we are finite. That means He knows every thought we have. That means He is the Creator and we are the creatures. He made us and not the other way around.
What can we know? We can know that we exist and that we don't know much directly. This is because we are finite, and very limited. However, God is not limited, and He has made Himself known through His creation and through His working through His people in the past. If we look with an open mind, we will see the evidence.
God has provided a world in which we can live and grow. He sends rain to make the crops to grow. He patiently lets us mess up our lives trying to live without Him. So, sure He respects us. He has lain down a few very simple rules, summarized in this: Love God and love people. So, can you do that? That is respect.
Meanwhile, most people in this world live only for themselves. They want what others have and tend to hurt others when they don't get what they want. And, for the most part, they "get away with it". It is convenient to not believe God is there, watching over everything and keeping records.
You keep coming back to "belief" being a compulsion. On the most basic level, you are correct. To believe is to be persuaded. It is to trust what one perceives beyond a doubt. That trust is what is called faith. It is beyond natural abilities to take the word of one you have never met. That is why God personally meets with those he considers "friends" and gives them the gift of faith. Without that gift, no one can believe God. And if you don't believe God, you won't "believe in" Him.
Please consider again the three articles I referenced above. And please contact me directly and we can talk over what is found in the Bible about those important subjects.
SouthWriter (talk) 02:11, June 2, 2018 (UTC)
Metal-Magic wrote Well to say ANYBODY deserves death is pretty harsh. (I'm anti-death penalty)
Well belief isn't a choice, it's a compulsion beyond the realm of choice.
That's not my intent at all. The point was, it's harsh to punish people for not believing you exist.
Death is the natural end to all life in this world. As a punishment it is harsh, and left to man it is often misused. However, if there is a God, then he doesn't answer to man.
What you trust, or believe, to be true is not definitive. This is because you are not a god, but human. There are things beyond our understanding. On the other hand, we know enough so that we should "know better", but we chose to remain ignorant, denying the obvious.
God does not punish people with hell, for it is the natural destination for mankind. The terms used in the Biblical languages, Sheol and Hades, are general terms for the grave. The survival of the soul after death gives a new meaning in context.
The good news is that the destination for the soul is determined by God. It is by His grace that He chooses a huge number to save from Hell. Those whom He has saved accept Him as Savior, trusting Him to be Who He says He is, and to do what He says He will do.
An atheist chooses to disbelieve, trusting his own judgment over against that of God and theists. Logically, an atheist rejects the idea of "life after death". It then becomes an idle charge against someone thought not to exist.
SouthWriter (talk) 17:09, May 31, 2018 (UTC)
The first Bible was likely a record of creation handed down from Noah to his sons. Then, Abraham's family kept records. From this, Moses was directed by God to write what is now Genesis. At the same time, he wrote down his own story, including the Law. This became the Scriptures up until the time of David.
Some people of this time period, and quite possibly Moses, knew of the story of Job. It is not known when that was written down, though.
I hope that helps.
No where are we called to "hate ourselves", though it is pretty clear that none of us are considered good enough to enter Heaven on our own merits. However, the Judeo-Christian answer to behavior is to show love to God, to our neighbors "as ourselves". This lines up with the "golden rule" as Jesus stated in another context.
God tells us we are bad people, but as a rule we don't believe Him. But the history of the world indicates that it is pretty much true. So, please don't misrepresent what the Bible teaches. There is a way to be at peace with God. Your analogy actually points directly at it.
Belief and faith are grounded in truth, that which is solid evidence which persuades us to trust the one who has told us. Let's say that somebody takes your punishment for a crime you thought you got away with. A friend tells you that this has happened but you figure "so what? It's like I never did that thing". Would that change the fact that you had done the deed? No. Would you be "denying" that your benefactor saved you from prison, or worse? No. What if you don't believe the benefactor exists? That wouldn't change the fact that he does exist. All he would have to do is show up and tell you himself. Then you would be able to accept his generosity.
That is what happened. God did show Himself in the person of Jesus Christ. He took the punishment that sinners like you and me deserve. It is so much more than you can imagine. Please take the time to read the articles about Sin, Salvation and Jesus Christ.
In Christ the Savior, SouthWriter (talk) 03:56, May 20, 2018 (UTC)
Two things to realize: 1. Justice is getting what you deserve. We all have sinned and deserve God's wrath.
2. Mercy is not getting what you deserve. God is gracious to those to whom he shows mercy.
A corrallary to #2 is that Grace is getting what you don't deserve. None of us deserve to be chosen by God to be saved from his wrath. But praise God that he is merciful and sent His Son to die in our place.
God wrote the rules, so it is HIS "game." There are no spectators, so those who brake the rules, lose. Unfortunately, everyone breaks the rules. Therefore, there are no winners. But then, for no particular reason, God aopts some of us losers into his family. We become winners because of who we know. Is that fair?
My point is, eternal life is not a matter of fairness, but rather of grace and mercy. It may seem like denying God exists is not such a bad thing, but it is a form of idolotry. The God denier sets himself, or nature, or job, or anything else in the place that God belongs. After breaking the first "rule" many of the others follow. So, it is not "simply for not believing".
As we have discussed, the "topical" headings very often are the work of scholars that have done exactly as you say. Blocks of text ("pericopes") are what they look for when they put those headings up.
What you are trying to do is get inside the head of the writer. In the historical books (like the Gospels and Acts) usually have clear indicators of a change of time and place. In the letters and didactic (teachings, or homilies, like Hebrews and Revelation), the logic of the argument must be followed. That will be a bit harder.
Debate is definitely in order. You guys want to redefine terms in a drastic measure to entice new contributors. Calling an edit writing will not make it so. For sure, improving stubs is needed, but that does not mean we should give it the priority. I do not want to pull rank, but as a full partner in the administration I dont like this one bit. We should encourage editing, while at the same time recruit writers. Active contributors who have started articles should be encouraged to finish them. Those articles should be monitored and administrators should encourage fellow writers to help in editing where needed.
Changes are not needed. This is a wiki, and those who contribute should treat it like one. We need contributions that add both quantity and quality. Those who cannot produce both can do one or the other. This is a team effort, so let's act like one.
There is already a button for creating articles. Rather than changing the paradigm, teach contributers to use the wiki. Direct them to the home page.
Actually, writing is the heavyweight job. It is easy to edit. Contributing to an article is not the same as writing it. I have written a book, short stories and poetry. It is hard work. My book was heavily edited by hard working grammar and style "Nazi" who settled for an acknowledgment (he is a friend). The work of an editor is vital, but the heavyweight work is the writing. Anyone who commits to writing should be willing to contribute to actual content. Editing of other people's stuff is mutual duty of all contributors.