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Questions concerning John 1

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Guest AnonymousWho

Hello everyone. I was hoping to ask a few questions concerning John chapter 1. I do not know Greek, but I have been trying to learn through the interlinear on biblehub.com and other resources. I have been trying to find somebody that knows Greek so I can discuss Greek grammar, but I have yet to find anyone. It doesn't matter to me if you are a Christian or not, I'm simply wishing for some help in understanding a few things, especially how pronouns work. Here is my translation:

 

Ἐγένετο (becomes) ἄνθρωπος (a man) ἀπεσταλμένος (having been sent) παρὰ (from) θεοῦ (of God), ὄνομα (name) αὐτῷ (to him) Ἰωάνης (John)

 

οὗτος (he) ἦλθεν (comes) εἰς (as) μαρτυρίαν (a witness) ἵνα (that) μαρτυρήσῃ ([he] witnesses) περὶ (concerning the things) τοῦ (of the) φωτός (light) ἵνα (that) πάντες (all) πιστεύσωσιν (believe) δι’ (because of) αὐτοῦ (him)

 

οὐκ (not) ἦν (was) ἐκεῖνος (he) τὸ (the) φῶς (light), ἀλλ’ (but) ἵνα (that) μαρτυρήσῃ ([he] witnesses) περὶ (concerning the things) τοῦ (of the) φωτός (light)

 

The word light is in the Genitive, so this would make περὶ mean "concerning the things/thing of" the light, correct?

 

So my question is, if the author writes about whatever "it" is that concerns "what" the light "possesses", and the associated noun of this is masculine, can the pronoun of the "thing/things" still be masculine? Even though light is a neuter noun?

 

Also, I'm wondering how it is that we know if the aorist tense is a past event, or continuously happening? From what I understand, the aorist carries both.

 

Thank you all and God bless you.

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Guest AnonymousWho

Thank you very much for the reply. I understand that the definite article behind φωτος is neuter. However, because φωτος is in the genitive, this would mean that του φωτος is in possession of περὶ, correct? According to Strong's concordance, περὶ, while following a genitive, can be understood as "concerning the things". So this would make it "concerning the things of the light".

 

What I'm asking is, if the "thing" that the light possesses is a masculine noun, but it has not been mentioned yet, would it's corresponding pronoun still be in the masculine form.

 

Here's an example. Let's say someone asks me to "describe something concerning the things of John", and I say "it (πουκάμισο: shirt) is blue with a picture of Eric Clapton", and then I later reveal that I was talking about the shirt, would the "it" be a feminine pronoun (corresponding to the shirt), or would it be a masculine pronoun (corresponding to John)?

 

Hopefully that makes more sense. Thank you friend.

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Sorry, I don't really understand where you're going with this.

 

The sentence as it is makes perfect sense in Greek. You shouldn't be translating it word for word and trying to make sense of it in English. You should look at the meaning behind it, which is (loosely translated): "he was not the light, but he was there to talk about the light".

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Guest AnonymousWho

Yes, I understand that the sentence makes sense the way it is, but there are a lot of pronouns in this chapter; the logos, the light, the darkness, the God, the John, the kosmos, ect., and I'm trying to correlate all the different possible nouns to a pronoun.

 

English translations make it out as though every pronoun is the logos, and I'm wanting to see if this is so.

 

Also, if the author mentions "the light", and it is understood that this light is "the God", would it be acceptable grammar for the author to revert back to a masculine pronoun, and still be talking about "the light"?

 

I just need to know these two things, and then I have a bit of work to do. If you'd still like to discuss this, I'll definitely show you what I'm working on. Thank you my friend and God bless you.

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Ἐγένετο ἄνθρωπος ἀπεσταλμένος παρὰ θεοῦ, ὄνομα αὐτῷ Ἰωάνης
οὗτος ἦλθεν εἰς μαρτυρίαν ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός ἵνα πάντες πιστεύσωσιν δι’ αὐτοῦ
οὐκ ἦν ἐκεῖνος τὸ φῶς, ἀλλ’ ἵνα μαρτυρήσῃ περὶ τοῦ φωτός.

 

 

That's how I would translate it:

 

A man was made a messenger by God. His name was John.

Thous he came to witness (the light) in order to testify about the light so that all may believe through him

not in him being the light but in his testimony about the light.

 

 

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Guest AnonymousWho

Perhaps it would be better if I explain why I am doing this. This is how I would translate John 1:1:

 

Ἐν (in) ἀρχῇ (beginning) [no definite article just like b'reshit in Genesis 1:1] ἦν (was) ὁ (the) λόγος (reason), καὶ (and) ὁ (the) λόγος (reason) ἦν (was) πρὸς (moving towards) τὸ (the) θεόν (God), καὶ (and) θεὸς (divine) ἦν (was) ὁ (the) λόγος (reason)

 

οὗτος (it) ἦν (was) ἐν (in) ἀρχῇ (beginning) πρὸς (moving towards) τὸν (the) θεόν (God)

 

πάντα (all) δι' (because of) αὐτοῦ (it) ἐγένετο (emerges) καὶ (and) χωρὶς (without) αὐτοῦ (it) ἐγένετο (emerges) οὐδὲ (not) ἕν (one) ὃ (that) γέγονεν (emerged)

 

You see, I believe God had a reason for preparing all things, and this is what John is telling us. All things were made "because of" the reason.

 

I do not believe John is telling us there was a "preexisting Word" that was later "incarnated" into somebody pretending to be a man. 

 

Καὶ (and) ὁ (the) λόγος (reason) σὰρξ (flesh) ἐγένετο (becomes) καὶ (and) ἐσκήνωσεν (tabernacles) ἐν (within) ἡμῖν (us) καὶ (and) ἐθεασάμεθα (we behold) τὴν (the) δόξαν (glory) αὐτοῦ (of it) δόξαν (glory) ὡς (like) μονογενοῦς (of a one and only) παρὰ (alongside) πατρός (of a father) πλήρης (full) χάριτος (of grace) καὶ (and) ἀληθείας (of truth)

 

Then when we get to Yeshua, we read:

 

καὶ (and) ἐμβλέψας (having looked at) τῷ (the) Ἰησοῦ (Jesus) περιπατοῦντι (walking) λέγει (he says)  Ἴδε (behold) ὁ (the) ἀμνὸς (lamb) τοῦ (of the) θεοῦ (God)

 

οὗτός (he) ἐστιν (it is) ὑπὲρ (on behalf) οὗ (of whom) ἐγὼ (I) εἶπον (said) Ὀπίσω (after) μου (me) ἔρχεται (comes) ἀνὴρ (a man) ὃς (who) ἔμπροσθέν (precedence) μου (of me) γέγονεν (has) ὅτι (since) πρῶτός (foremost) μου (of me) ἦν (was)

 

The other times when John the Baptist speaks, he is speaking περὶ (concerning the things of). But when Yeshua appears, John says this is the man ὑπὲρ οὗ (on behalf of whom) he was speaking about.

 

I do believe Yeshua was "the reason", but again, I do not believe this is because He preexisted as a "divine logos". I believe it is because in Hebrews 1:2 we are told:

 

ἐπ' (in) ἐσχάτων (last) τῶν (the) ἡμερῶν (days) τούτων (of these) ἐλάλησεν (speaks) ἡμῖν (to us) ἐν (in) υἱῷ (son) ὃν (whom) ἔθηκεν (he appointed) κληρονόμον (heir) πάντων (of all) δι' (because of) οὗ (whom) καὶ (also) τοὺς (the) αἰῶνας (ages) ἐποίησεν (he makes)

 

And...

 

"For unto the angels hath he not put in subjection the world to come, whereof we speak.

But one in a certain place testified, saying, What is man, that thou art mindful of him? or the son of man, that thou visitest him?

Thou madest him a little lower than the angels; thou crownedst him with glory and honour, and didst set him over the works of thy hands:

Thou hast put all things in subjection under his feet. For in that he put all in subjection under him, he left nothing that is not put under him. But now we see not yet all things put under him.

But we see Jesus...." Hebrews 2:5

 

I believe Yeshua is the fulfillment of Genesis 1:26:

 

And God said, Let us make (Heb. עשׂה H6213: accomplish) man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.

 

I'm not really sure about my use of the Aorist tense, but do any of you see anything wrong with this translation so far? I would really appreciate your help. Thank you all and God bless you.

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Guest FriendofGreece

Hi, Anonymouswho, welcome to the forum!

 

Since you talk about religion, may I ask you some questions? I am not Greek nor Christian, and I don't follow any religion, just for you to know where I am coming from. So my questions are just due to my curiosity and I would appreciate to hear your views. 

 

Why, in the Bible, man is made in the image of God and has dominion over everything? Why isn't man just part of the nature that God created, the same as the animals and the plants?

 

Since man is made in the image of God, does God look like men? Why just the physical appearance and not other characterisitics too, like eternal life?

 

Was the woman created after the creation of the animals and the plants?

 

How could man have the dominion when man did not exist at the beginning,when there were dinosaurs, etc.? 

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Guest AnonymousWho

Hi, Anonymouswho, welcome to the forum!

 

Since you talk about religion, may I ask you some questions? I am not Greek nor Christian, and I don't follow any religion, just for you to know where I am coming from. So my questions are just due to my curiosity and I would appreciate to hear your views. 

 

Why, in the Bible, man is made in the image of God and has dominion over everything? Why isn't man just part of the nature that God created, the same as the animals and the plants?

 

Since man is made in the image of God, does God look like men? Why just the physical appearance and not other characterisitics too, like eternal life?

 

Was the woman created after the creation of the animals and the plants?

 

How could man have the dominion when man did not exist at the beginning,when there were dinosaurs, etc.? 

 

Hello friend and thank you for discussing this with me. I'll try to answer all of your questions the best I can.

 

1) Why does man have dominion in the bible? May I answer a question with a question? Why does man have dominion over everything in nature? Mankind can overcome any beast and any obstacle, we can genetically modify and study the smallest life forms, we can split the smallest atom and observe the farthest depths of the galaxy. This is not just an "idea" in the bible, it is an established fact that mankind has dominion. As Yacob (James) says:

 

"Behold, we put bits in the horses' mouths, that they may obey us; and we turn about their whole body. 

Behold also the ships, which though they be so great, and are driven of fierce winds, yet are they turned about with a very small helm, whithersoever the governor listeth. 

Even so the tongue is a little member, and boasteth great things. Behold, how great a matter a little fire kindleth! 

And the tongue is a fire, a world of iniquity: so is the tongue among our members, that it defileth the whole body, and setteth on fire the course of nature; and it is set on fire of hell. 

For every kind of beasts, and of birds, and of serpents, and of things in the sea, is tamed, and hath been tamed of mankind:

But the tongue can no man tame; it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison. 

Therewith bless we God, even the Father; and therewith curse we men, which are made after the similitude of God." James 3:3

 

The Scriptures just tell us "why" this is so.

 

2) No we do not look like God. God has no form. He is invisible. However, we take on his likeness. Notice above when I quoted Genests 1:26. The Hebrew word translated "make" is עשׂה asah, and it means "accomplish". Mankind is simply a vessel of clay that God breathed His spirit of life into. This spirit is what animates us, but it does not make us His image. His image was accomplished when mankind ate the fruit of the knowledge of Good and Evil:

 

"And the LORD God said, Behold, the man is become as (Heb. like one) one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever" Genesis 3:22

 

God's "image" is not a physical image. The image of God is within us.

 

"Eternal life" in Greek is aionios zoe. It is not something that we get after we die, as if "christians" get to live forever while the rest of the world is tortured and burned forever. Aionios is the adjective form of aion, and aion means "age". So aionios means "concerning the age", or "unto the age". This means aionios zoe is "life unto the age" or "concerning the age of life". This is something we receive now, and it has nothing to do with "heaven" and "hell":

 

"And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent." John 17:3

 

Aionios zoe is to know our Father YHVH and His son Yeshua the Messiah. This knowledge is far greater than anything else that any vain religion or philosophy could ever imagine, because it is the absolute truth. If thinking that God has a name like YHVH seems like nonsense to you, I'd love to discuss His name with you. All I'll say for now is, it does not mean "I AM". 

 

3) Yes, woman was prepared after the animals. There were female animals, but the female counterpart of man had not yet been prepared.

 

4) Whether man lived with dinosaurs or not, I do not know. Archeologists have found dinosaurs that cannot have been as old as we've previously understood, and they have found fossils of mankind that are much older than we ever thought possible. All I know is, archeologists have a lot more digging to do.

 

However, I do know that God made the dinosaurs, because we are told this in Genesis:

 

"And God created great (גָּדוֹל :great, extreme, severe) whales (תַּנִּין: serpent, dragon), and every living creature that moveth, which the waters brought forth abundantly, after their kind, and every winged fowl after his kind: and God saw that it was good." Genesis 1:21

 

If the Septuagint translators had known that Richard Owen would coin the term Dino-saur in 1842, then that is probably exactly what the Septuagint would say, because dinosaur is Greek for "terrible lizard". Isn't that neat?

 

I hoped I answered all your questions. Thank you my friend and God bless you.

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Guest FriendofGreece

Thanks for your explanations. I don't know much about the Bible, so please be patient with my very basic questions, as I am trying to understand.

 

So it looks like the woman comes last in God's creation, lower than the animals. Why is that so, while the female animals are created apparently at the same time like the male animals? And also, why did the woman have to come from the rib of Adam, why couldn't the woman be a whole like the man? Considering that the woman bears the children, it seems so incongruous that the woman comes from the man.

 

It took man quite long to be homo erectus and then to achieve what you said. In the process, since we are told we have the dominion over everything else, man has managed to destroy everything that God gave us. Animals are extinct from over killing, the air and the water are polluted, etc. Did God not foresee how men would misuse the dominion given to them? It seems God gave men the dominion and just let them alone to do what they want with, including the destruction of the Earth and their own destruction (nuclear arms). In other cultures, like India, Asian, or the American natives, there seems not to be that concept of dominion, rather man lives in harmony with nature. 

 

I did not understand what you meant by the scriptures told us "why" man has dominion. The text you quoted seems to refer to what man can do, not why.

 

Why did God not want man to know about good and evil? So, when man knew good and evil, he became an image of God? Why is good and evil so important, since it is not the whole truth or knowledge?

 

YHVH - what does that mean?

 

Eternal life means to know God and His Son, and that knowledge is the absolute truth? Why did God wait to send Jesus to us in the year 0 to let us know about Him (God), why not before? Why does God need Jesus as an intermediary between God and us? If we are the image of God, and God is within us, why don't we know God by ourselves, since we are a part of God? If knowing God is the absolute truth, and Jesus lived in the Middle East at that time, how can people from other far away areas know about Jesus and this God, and so it seems they are doomed not to know the absolute truth? Even till today, there are many people who know absolutely nothing about this God and Jesus. If God is the absolute truth, and He created everything, why did He allow other gods to be adored by men, such that He had to tell us that He is (the real) God?

 

Why did Jesus come to take our sins for us? We still commit plenty of sins, what will happen? Will there be another Messiah?

 

Why does man need to know about God and Jesus? We have lived for so long without that knowledge. Besides, now that we know about God and Jesus, we still really do not have knowledge. We don't know why we live and die on this Earth, we struggle with our science to discover things, but in the process, we make a lot of errors. An example is scientists one day say coffee is not good for you, and the next day say that it is good for you. 

 

The Old Testament seems to me as being basically the history of the Jews. Is the God in the Old Testament the same God as in the New Testament? Why is the God of the Jews changed into the God of everyone?

 

What if I believe in God only (naturally, not through religion) and not in Jesus as His Messiah, would I not know the absolute truth then?

 

Why did God, through Jesus, appear to the people in the Middle East, wherever Jesus went, and not to the people in the whole world? It seems quite a difficult task to send the disciples of Jesus to talk about the religion, in various languages, and to suffer as the Christians had to suffer. All this does not make sense to me.

 

Looking forward to hear your comments. Thanks.

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Guest AnonymousWho

Thanks for your explanations. I don't know much about the Bible, so please be patient with my very basic questions, as I am trying to understand.

 

So it looks like the woman comes last in God's creation, lower than the animals. Why is that so, while the female animals are created apparently at the same time like the male animals? And also, why did the woman have to come from the rib of Adam, why couldn't the woman be a whole like the man? Considering that the woman bears the children, it seems so incongruous that the woman comes from the man.

 

It took man quite long to be homo erectus and then to achieve what you said. In the process, since we are told we have the dominion over everything else, man has managed to destroy everything that God gave us. Animals are extinct from over killing, the air and the water are polluted, etc. Did God not foresee how men would misuse the dominion given to them? It seems God gave men the dominion and just let them alone to do what they want with, including the destruction of the Earth and their own destruction (nuclear arms). In other cultures, like India, Asian, or the American natives, there seems not to be that concept of dominion, rather man lives in harmony with nature. 

 

I did not understand what you meant by the scriptures told us "why" man has dominion. The text you quoted seems to refer to what man can do, not why.

 

Why did God not want man to know about good and evil? So, when man knew good and evil, he became an image of God? Why is good and evil so important, since it is not the whole truth or knowledge?

 

YHVH - what does that mean?

 

Eternal life means to know God and His Son, and that knowledge is the absolute truth? Why did God wait to send Jesus to us in the year 0 to let us know about Him (God), why not before? Why does God need Jesus as an intermediary between God and us? If we are the image of God, and God is within us, why don't we know God by ourselves, since we are a part of God? If knowing God is the absolute truth, and Jesus lived in the Middle East at that time, how can people from other far away areas know about Jesus and this God, and so it seems they are doomed not to know the absolute truth? Even till today, there are many people who know absolutely nothing about this God and Jesus. If God is the absolute truth, and He created everything, why did He allow other gods to be adored by men, such that He had to tell us that He is (the real) God?

 

Why did Jesus come to take our sins for us? We still commit plenty of sins, what will happen? Will there be another Messiah?

 

Why does man need to know about God and Jesus? We have lived for so long without that knowledge. Besides, now that we know about God and Jesus, we still really do not have knowledge. We don't know why we live and die on this Earth, we struggle with our science to discover things, but in the process, we make a lot of errors. An example is scientists one day say coffee is not good for you, and the next day say that it is good for you. 

 

The Old Testament seems to me as being basically the history of the Jews. Is the God in the Old Testament the same God as in the New Testament? Why is the God of the Jews changed into the God of everyone?

 

What if I believe in God only (naturally, not through religion) and not in Jesus as His Messiah, would I not know the absolute truth then?

 

Why did God, through Jesus, appear to the people in the Middle East, wherever Jesus went, and not to the people in the whole world? It seems quite a difficult task to send the disciples of Jesus to talk about the religion, in various languages, and to suffer as the Christians had to suffer. All this does not make sense to me.

 

Looking forward to hear your comments. Thanks.

 

Thank you for discussing this with me. I'm sorry, that is a lot of questions. I'll try to answer a few of them, and hopefully this will get you on track to answering your own questions. If there are questions that are really important to you that my explanation doesn't answer, then please ask again and I'll make sure to address it.

 

First, why was woman made after the man? I do not know. There are several opinions on this, but it is not something I have spent a great amount of study on. I have read a few articles that I'd be glad to share with you, but I'm not quite sure if I believe them. I'm only 25 years old, so if God wills it, this is something I will definitely look into during my life. But for now, I have other matters that I must seek out.

 

Here is an article from one of my favorite theologians, Adolph Knoch. I say favorite because he has a lot of interesting things to say about pretty much any subject, but our philosophies are far from similar. However, this is my current understanding of where woman comes from, but I am definitely not set in this interpretation:

 

http://www.theheraldofgodsgrace.org/Knoch/building.htm

 

You asked if God foresaw the wicked that man would eventually do. Absolutely. God knows all things. This is the first thing we must understand if we wish to know the only true God. He foresees and He has determined all things. Let's start with His name, and hopefully you will understand why the Scriptures tell us to "believe in His name". Then I will explain what I understand happened in the Garden.

 

According to Brown-Driver-Riggs Concordance, YHVH means:

 

"On literature of interpretations see NesEg.67 Drl.c. — Many recent scholars explain יַהְוֶה as Hiph`il of היה (=היהthe one bringing into being, life-giver (compare חַוָּה Genesis 3:20) Schr HSch; giver of existence, creator, Kue Tiele; he who brings to pass (so already Le Clerc), performer of his promises"

 

YHVH actually means "He who causes to become". That is because YHVH is the Determiner of all things. Through Cause and Effect and the Laws of Physics, God has brought to pass all things that have ever happened, and ever will happen. So yes, God foresaw everything mankind would do, just as He foresees every move you will ever make. There is nothing that surprises God, and there is nothing that can stop what God has purposed. I don't know how you feel about "free will", but I have met very few people who are willing to accept that free will is impossible, whether there is the God or not. Here is an article about Determinism if you're interested:

 

http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/determinism-causal/

 

The author mentions Quantum Mechanics, as though these tiny particles are not under the control of the Determiner, but we can discuss that as well if you'd like. However, logically, scientifically, and definitely Scripturally, no man has any sort of thing that could be considered a "free" will.

 

"Why didn't God want Adam and Eve to have knowledge of Good and Evil"? The answer that is usually given by the church is "God wanted man to choose using his free will and blah blah blah...", but that is nonsense. If God did not want Adam and Eve to eat the fruit, then we can be certain they would not have eaten the fruit. Here is my interpretation of Genesis 1-3 (I'm copying it from another forum I wrote on, so some things I've already said will be repeated):

 

"And God said, Let us make (H6213 עָשָׂה asah: accomplish) man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth." Genesis 1:26

 

God tells us right in the first chapter what His purpose is for mankind. He is making us in His Image, after His Likeness. This required something that Adam and Eve did not possess when He made them: the Knowledge of Good and Evil.

 

I believe this next verse is where the true confusion lies:

 

"And YHVH God commanded the man, saying, Of every tree of the garden thou mayest freely eat:

But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou [shalt] not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die (Heb. dying thou die)."Genesis 2:16-17

 

Here, we see that God tells Adam he may eat of every tree in the Garden. Then God warns man that when (because it was gonna happen) He eats of the Tree oKnowledge, he will begin dying.

 

The problem with all translations is the word "shalt" in "thou shalt not eat of it". The word shalt is not in the original Hebrew. The original says:

 

וּמֵעֵ֗ץ (of the tree) הַדַּ֙עַת֙ (of the knowledge) ט֣וֹב (of good) וָרָ֔ע (and evil) לֹ֥א (not) תֹאכַ֖ל (eat) תֹאכַ֖ל (of)

 

http://biblehub.com/interlinear/genesis/2-17.htm

 

God did not "command" them regarding whether they could eat of the Tree, He warned them of the consequences when they did eat. With this in mind, let's see if we can make sense of this all.

 

"Now the serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field which YHVH God had made. And he said unto the woman, Yea, hath God said, Ye shall not eat of every tree of the garden?" Genesis 3:1

 

So now we are introduced to the Serpent, whom God had made more subtile than any other beast. Right from the beginning he lies to Eve. God never said they may "not" eat of every tree, He said they "may" eat of every tree. This confuses Eve, but she responds with what God had told her:

 

"And the woman said unto the serpent, We may eat of the fruit of the trees of the garden:

But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye [shall] not eat of it, neither [shall] ye touch it, lest ye die." Genesis 3:2-3

 

Then the Serpent lies again, but deceives Eve by mixing his lie with truth:

 

"And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die:

For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as (like) gods, knowing good and evil." Genesis 3:4-5

 

Eve did not know any better when she ate the Fruit. She had no knowledge of either Good or Evil. How could she have made a rational decision? This was all in perfect alignment of God's original and only plan. God verifies that everything is going according to His plan next:

 

"And YHVH God said, Behold, the man is become as (like) one of us, to know good and evil: and now, lest he put forth his hand, and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live for ever" Genesis 3:22

 

You see my friend, this was not a huge mishap on God's part, by which He had to resort to plan B. There is no plan B.

 

God desired to make man in His Image, and this required the Knowledge of Good and Evil. God Himself planted the Tree and He made the Serpent to tempt Adam and Eve. Everything went perfectly.

 

So, why evil?

 

"YHVH hath made all things for himself: yea, even the wicked for the day of evil." Proverbs 16:4

 

The church tries to separate God from evil, as though He Himself did not prepare it. They use a lot of nonsensical terms like "free will" and claim that some mythical character named Lucifer thwarted the will of God. 

 

What they don't understand is, God causes you to sin (but God does not commit the sin), and He knows (with 100% certainty) that the consequence of your sins will eventually teach you righteousness. It is the experience of evil that causes you to be humble. 

 

"YHVH, thou hast heard the desire of the humble: thou wilprepare their heart, thou wilt cause thine ear to hear" Psalm 10:17

 

Check out this verse, which is slaughtered by all English translations:

 

"And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven: this sore (רָ֗עH7451: evil) travail (Heb: occupation) hath God given to the sons of man to be exercised (לַעֲנ֥וֹת H6031: brought low, humbled) therewith." Ecclesiastes 1:13

 

http://biblehub.com/interlinear/ecclesiastes/1-13.htm

 

Free will is not the answer to the Problem of Evil. God Himself prepares evil:

 

"I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil (רָ֑עevil): I YHVH do all these things." Isaiah 45:7

 

God is the answer. He is the answer to everything. And He will restore everything.

 

You see, we have the knowledge of Good and Evil, but what we lack is the prudance to use our knowledge righteously. This is why Yeshua came. He shows us the truth about the Scriptures. He teaches us that we are the son of man, and He reveals to us what this means: that we are to love and forgive one another, unconditionally.

 

YHVH is the God of the Old as well as the God of the New. He is the only God. There are things in the Hebrew Scriptures that are very confusing and seem to be barbaric, but when we know God and His son, He shows us the truth. Take sacrifices for example. In the second verse of Leviticus, we read:

 

"Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, If any man of you bring an offering unto YHVH, ye shall bring your offering of the cattle, even of the herd, and of the flock."

 

You see that big "if" at the very beginning of how sacrifices are to be carried out? YHVH neither required nor desired sacrifices. Yeshua explains why there are things in the Law that God does not desire:

 

"He saith unto them, Moses because of the hardness of your hearts suffered you to put away your wives: but from the beginning it was not so." Matthew 19:8

 

And this is why Yeshua says:

 

"But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Matthew 9:13

 

The only true God has no need for sacrifices and burnt offerings, but this is not to say that sacrifice does not play an important role in the perfection of man:

 

"For thou desirest not sacrifice; else would I give it: thou delightest not in burnt offering.

The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise." Psalm 51:16

 

You say you believe in God, but you're not so sure about Yeshua being the Messiah. Yeshua says:

 

"Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews. 

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 

God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. 

The woman saith unto him, I know that Messias cometh, which is called Christ: when he is come, he will tell us all things. 

Jesus saith unto her, I that speak unto thee am he." John 4:22

 

Only a few people are chosen to know the only God and His son, in this age. But there is coming a time when all of mankind will know the truth, for God says:

 

"I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear." Isaiah 45:23

 

God will judge the world, and when He judges, something amazing happens:

 

"With my soul have I desired thee in the night; yea, with my spirit within me will I seek thee early: for when thy judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness." Isaiah 26:9

 

Well, I know this doesn't answer all your questions, but I hope it at least peaks your interest. I look forward to hearing from you my friend. Thank you and God bless you.

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Guest FriendofGreece

Thanks for your comments and references. Most of what you said is new to me. The more I read though, the more I am puzzled.

 

When God made man in his image, after his likeness, I think it was not really so, because man was lacking the knowledge of good and evil, so it was his image minus something, just like when a good cook gives a recipe but keeps the main ingredient. Why didn't God just give man the knowledge of good and evil, if he had wanted that all the way, rather than going through the process of making Eve out of Adam, and have Eve listen to the serpent? Eve sounds like a dumb blonde, by the way.  :D

 

The description of the creation was written by the people who wrote the Old Testament. How did they know that, did God tell them? How is the genesis different from a creation mythology that people in each culture tries to come up with to explain their existence? 

 

So man has dominion over everything but does not have free will, since everything is controlled by God? Although I agree there are many things that man does not control, like life and death, tornadoes, tsunamis, earthquakes, etc., surely man must have some kind of free will, doesn't he? Does God control man to create nuclear bombs and kill each other, the rich to profit from the poor, politicians to lie, etc.? I think men do those things of their own free will and should take responsibility for them.

 

God sought the true worshippers to worship him. Since God made us, why did God have to struggle to make us worship him and not other gods? 

 

Even in this age, only a few people know God and his Son? What happens to all the Christians who have been worshipping God and Jesus? Have they been doing that in vain all those years? Why is God being so mysterious? He sought for us to worship him as true worshippers, but if we don't know who is God, how can we worship him? It is like blind worshipping..

 

On the day of judgement, that is when men will know righteousness? In the meantime, we live not in righteousness? Why hasn't God told us what is righteous so that we can be so and on the day of judgement, we will pass the test with flying colours? It is as if you perform badly in your work, but your boss does not tell you anything, and on the day of performance evaluation, he tells you you did so bad that he is going to fire you. Had your boss told you right away what bad things you did, you could have corrected them so that on performance evaluation day, you would be able to get a good evaluation since you have improved.

 

By the way, are you a priest by any chance, or are you writing another translation of the Bible?

 

Another question: Is good and evil defined in the Bible?

 

I am looking forward to your comments. Thanks!

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Guest AnonymousWho

Thanks for your comments and references. Most of what you said is new to me. The more I read though, the more I am puzzled.

 

When God made man in his image, after his likeness, I think it was not really so, because man was lacking the knowledge of good and evil, so it was his image minus something, just like when a good cook gives a recipe but keeps the main ingredient. Why didn't God just give man the knowledge of good and evil, if he had wanted that all the way, rather than going through the process of making Eve out of Adam, and have Eve listen to the serpent? Eve sounds like a dumb blonde, by the way.  :D

 

The description of the creation was written by the people who wrote the Old Testament. How did they know that, did God tell them? How is the genesis different from a creation mythology that people in each culture tries to come up with to explain their existence? 

 

So man has dominion over everything but does not have free will, since everything is controlled by God? Although I agree there are many things that man does not control, like life and death, tornadoes, tsunamis, earthquakes, etc., surely man must have some kind of free will, doesn't he? Does God control man to create nuclear bombs and kill each other, the rich to profit from the poor, politicians to lie, etc.? I think men do those things of their own free will and should take responsibility for them.

 

God sought the true worshippers to worship him. Since God made us, why did God have to struggle to make us worship him and not other gods? 

 

Even in this age, only a few people know God and his Son? What happens to all the Christians who have been worshipping God and Jesus? Have they been doing that in vain all those years? Why is God being so mysterious? He sought for us to worship him as true worshippers, but if we don't know who is God, how can we worship him? It is like blind worshipping..

 

On the day of judgement, that is when men will know righteousness? In the meantime, we live not in righteousness? Why hasn't God told us what is righteous so that we can be so and on the day of judgement, we will pass the test with flying colours? It is as if you perform badly in your work, but your boss does not tell you anything, and on the day of performance evaluation, he tells you you did so bad that he is going to fire you. Had your boss told you right away what bad things you did, you could have corrected them so that on performance evaluation day, you would be able to get a good evaluation since you have improved.

 

By the way, are you a priest by any chance, or are you writing another translation of the Bible?

 

Another question: Is good and evil defined in the Bible?

 

I am looking forward to your comments. Thanks!

 

Hello my friend and thank you for the reply. 

 

You asked why God didn't just give Adam and Eve the knowledge to begin with. I can only speculate. I have wondered this as well, but I have yet to find an answer that I am comfortable with. Sometimes I just have to be patient. All I know is:

 

In beginning was the reason and the reason was with God, and divine was the reason. It was in beginning with God. All emerges because of it, and without it emerges not one that has emerged

 

There is a time for everything:

 

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which isplanted;

A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

What profit hath he that worketh in that wherein he laboureth? 

I have seen the travail, which God hath given to the sons of men to be exercised (humbled) in it.

He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end." Ecclesiastes 3:1

 

To me, this is like asking "Why does anything happen?" I don't know, but it does. I recommend you read Ecclesiastes, because it answers a lot of questions right from the beginning of it:

 

"Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity." Ecclesiastes 1:2

 

That's what I love about the Scriptures. They don't attempt to burden you with some "purpose" that "you" are supposed to fulfill. They tell you straight up, all is meaningless. So go on with your life because it'll all be over soon. Have you ever heard such comforting words? That's a joke, but really, life is meaningless. This made me sad at first. In fact:

 

"Therefore I hated life; because the work that is wrought under the sun is grievous unto me: for all is vanity and vexation of spirit." Ecclesiastes 2:17

 

But then I understood:

 

"There is nothing better for a man, than that he should eat and drink, and that he should make his soul enjoy good in his labour. This also I saw, that it was from the hand of God.

For who can eat, or who else can hasten hereunto, more than I? 

For God giveth to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy: but to the sinner he giveth travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to him that is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit." Eccl. 2:24

 

And now I know that the best thing for me is to:

 

"Live joyfully with the wife whom thou lovest all the days of the life of thy vanity, which he hath given thee under the sun, all the days of thy vanity: for that is thy portion in this life, and in thy labour which thou takest under the sun." Eccl. 9:9

 

Now I am comfortable, content, and I can finally slow down and enjoy this meaningless journey. I have no fear, no worries, and no meaningless cares. I just trust God, and He leads me wherever He purposed for me to go.

 

I do not believe God "controls" everything. Everything is under His control, but He is not having to put forth any effort for anything to happen. Whatever He did when He brought order to the Universe, that was the initial Cause of all things. Perhaps this scenario will help clear this up. Let's say I know (with 100% certainty) that if John robs a bank, the following situation will happen:

I know that when John runs away, he will accidentally drop the money in front of a children's hospital. 

 

I also know that the hospital will think it's a donation, and use the money to save thousands of children's lives. 

 

I also know that after the children are saved, John will be caught. 

 

I also know that John will have to repay every dime he stole. 

 

I also know that after his prison sentence, John will learn that robbery is wrong, so he will spend the rest of his life reaching out to criminals.

 

I also know that his outreach will save many people from becoming criminals. 

 

I also know that after all of this, John will die a happy and righteous man.

 

If John doesn't rob that bank, none of this will happen. The children will die; John will continue living a life of sin; the people that John reached out to will eventually become criminals; and John will die from a shootout with the police. 

 

So I coerce John to rob the bank. 

 

If I know, with 100% certainty, that all of this will happen, wouldn't it be wrong for me not to coerce John?

 

Does this make sense?

 

God does not struggle. He has simply determined that men should be deceived, worshipping that which they know nothing about. He has even done this with His own word. I'm convinced that God lives irony.

 

You asked if Christians have been living in vain. Well, their lives are no more or less vain than the rest of mankind. God seeks (and finds) those that truly wish to worship Him. But as Yeshua said, "many are called, but few are chosen". However:

 

"And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw (Greek: drag) all men unto me." John 12:32

 

How can we worship Him? We can only do what God has determined for us to do. My whole life has led me to believe in YHVH, and because of this, I believe and worship YHVH. He has shown to me that He is real, because His word is true. My heart and mind accept this, so thus, I worship YHVH. 

 

Godd has told us what is righteous. He has a Law that we are to follow, that He delivered to Moses. Follow the law, and you will act in righteousness:

 

"And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.

He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 

But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. 

He that saith he abideth in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked." John 2:3

 

Christianity teaches that Messiah has "freed us from the Law", as though the Law is the most burdensome and wicked thing a man could attempt to follow. That is nonsense. God's Law is righteous and true, but men do not understand His Law, so they shove it aside and insist that we ignore it. Again, I'm convinced that God loves irony.

 

Is good and evil defined in the bible? Good is Love, and everything that is not done out of Love, is Evil. God is Love. 

 

No I am not a priest. I just love reading the Scriptures. I'm also not writing a new translation, I just want to know what John was talking about. I do not believe in an "incarnate word" or that Yeshua "preextisted" as some sort of Son tool that God used to "create all things out of nothing". There are a lot of pronouns in John, and I just want to know what these pronouns should be associated with. I think I've about got it figured out. I'll share it with you when I'm done.

 

I'm enjoying our conversation. I'd like to ask you a question if you don't mind. Who is your God? Does he/she have a purpose? 

 

Thank you my friend and God bless you.

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Guest FriendofGreece

Thanks for all your explanations and for replying to the personal questions I asked you. I will read more closely what you wrote and think about it and will reply to you later.

 

For the time being, in answer to your question "Who is your God? Does he/she have a purpose?", I can say that God to me is the Creator of the universe (of all things). "He/She" may have a purpose but I do not know it. But, in my opinion, there should be a purpose for all things have a reason, if not a purpose, in life. In my view, things don't happen just to happen.

 

I must say that when I was young, I never thought about God. It was only much later that I started to think about God and to believe in Him. To me, there must be "Someone" who created all that we see, and don't see, around us. Things were not created out of the blue sky. I say "He/She" and "Someone" because of course, God is not a man, but a power far superior.

 

As for us, humans, why are we on this planet Earth? Are there other inhabitants, under whatever form they could be, on other planets? Why are humans so alone in the universe? I don't know. Will we ever know? 

 

Reading what you wrote somehow gives me a sense a peace. Thanks very much, my friend, and God bless you too. 

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Guest FriendofGreece

Si I reread what you wrote. I did not have time yet to read Ecclesiastes, is it in the Old Testament or the New Testament?

 

You mentioned "For God giveth to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy: but to the sinner he giveth travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to him that is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit." Eccl. 2:24". 

 

I have trouble with this. In life, we often see good people suffering from various things while bad people, the "sinners", live happily without a worry, being rich from exploitation of poor people, getting away with many bad things, etc. Since we have only one life, the one we are living, we cannot even say OK it is going to be better in the next life. There is a certain unfairness, don't you think so?

 

Is the Law you talked about the 10 commandments? I was actually surprised why only those 10 and not more. Nevertheless, those were given to Moses for the Israelites, it seems. Why do we have to follow them?

 

You mentioned good is love and God is Love, and everything not done out of love is evil. I guess this is how you define good and evil. I have trouble with that. In the Old Testament, it seems that God cared only for the Jews. How do you make the transition to God is Love? Furthermore, good and evil may depend on the culture. What is evil in one culture may be considered good in another, for example, honor killings.

 

Why would God have determined that men should be deceived and why would God love irony? I cannot envision anything like that. Imagine if a man who is a creator of a robot goes on to put mechanisms inside the robot to deceive it so that he can laugh at the robot. And are humans so important such that God would pay so much attention to us? Humans are just tiny invisible grains of sand in this universe. 

 

When you mention John, are you talking about John the Baptist?

 

And yes, I agree we have only our lives, so we have to enjoy every minute we are given of them. Maybe we will never know anything about God. Does it really matter at the end whether we know God or not? 

 

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 To me, there must be "Someone" who created all that we see, and don't see, around us. Things were not created out of the blue sky. I say "He/She" and "Someone" because of course, God is not a man, but a power far superior.

 

As for us, humans, why are we on this planet Earth? Are there other inhabitants, under whatever form they could be, on other planets? Why are humans so alone in the universe? I don't know. Will we ever know? 

 

 

Seriously? So all the scientific knowledge people have acquired during the past couple of centuries mean nothing to you? You still think that "things were not created out of the blue sky"? Well guess what. This is exactly where life came from. It came from the blue sky through space. And no, there was no god involved with the process... :) except if you call nature "god".

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Guest FriendofGreece

The scientific knowledge produced good and bad things. I am not saying that it means nothing but I am not in awe of it.

 

But where does the blue sky come from? There must be a starting point somewhere. The starting point would be God, I think.

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Guest AnonymousWho

Si I reread what you wrote. I did not have time yet to read Ecclesiastes, is it in the Old Testament or the New Testament?

 

You mentioned "For God giveth to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy: but to the sinner he giveth travail, to gather and to heap up, that he may give to him that is good before God. This also is vanity and vexation of spirit." Eccl. 2:24". 

 

I have trouble with this. In life, we often see good people suffering from various things while bad people, the "sinners", live happily without a worry, being rich from exploitation of poor people, getting away with many bad things, etc. Since we have only one life, the one we are living, we cannot even say OK it is going to be better in the next life. There is a certain unfairness, don't you think so?

 

Is the Law you talked about the 10 commandments? I was actually surprised why only those 10 and not more. Nevertheless, those were given to Moses for the Israelites, it seems. Why do we have to follow them?

 

You mentioned good is love and God is Love, and everything not done out of love is evil. I guess this is how you define good and evil. I have trouble with that. In the Old Testament, it seems that God cared only for the Jews. How do you make the transition to God is Love? Furthermore, good and evil may depend on the culture. What is evil in one culture may be considered good in another, for example, honor killings.

 

Why would God have determined that men should be deceived and why would God love irony? I cannot envision anything like that. Imagine if a man who is a creator of a robot goes on to put mechanisms inside the robot to deceive it so that he can laugh at the robot. And are humans so important such that God would pay so much attention to us? Humans are just tiny invisible grains of sand in this universe. 

 

When you mention John, are you talking about John the Baptist?

 

And yes, I agree we have only our lives, so we have to enjoy every minute we are given of them. Maybe we will never know anything about God. Does it really matter at the end whether we know God or not? 

 

 

I'm sorry for the delay my friend. I had just spent the whole night writing you back, and then my phone died; so it erased everything. I assume this means I was telling you something wrong, so I need to think a bit longer about what you've written me. You asked several questions that literally sound like direct quotes from the Scriptures. "Why does the way of the wicked prosper?" (Jeremiah 12:1) and "What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you visit him?" (Psalm 8:4 and Hebrews 2:5). I feel like these two questions are far more important than the quick and unthoughtful message that I had originally wrote. I will think about these things longer, and reply as soon as I can. Thank you for your patience, and God bless you my friend. 

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Seriously? So all the scientific knowledge people have acquired during the past couple of centuries mean nothing to you? You still think that "things were not created out of the blue sky"? Well guess what. This is exactly where life came from. It came from the blue sky through space. And no, there was no god involved with the process... :) except if you call nature "god".

 

Hello, thank you for joining us. I'm curious to know if this "nature" has consciousness. Also, I'm not quite sure what you mean by "It came from the blue sky through space". What do you mean by "through" in this sentence? Was space some sort of "tool" that "nature" used to make the blue sky. This same blue sky only appears blue because of the molecules in the air, and these same molecules are made up of oxygen, which we breath, which enables our brains to function, which give us consciousness. The Scriptures say YHVH has given this to us:

 

And the YHVH God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul.

 

The Scriptures say that life is a mixture of this breath and "the dust of the earth". Here is an interesting article about the different minerals that make up our bodies:

 

https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&rct=j&url=http://www.jbc.org/content/75/3/789.full.pdf&ved=0ahUKEwj56NmphKzKAhWI4iYKHUtIBl8QFggyMAU&usg=AFQjCNHhm4L7EtUsNNQu4MDymXceljwj3A&sig2=7s71hKibgnB2YsJ87x2wtg

 

I just think this is interesting. But I really would like to know if "nature" has consciousness. 

 

Thank you and God bless.

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admin, on 15 Jan 2016 - 09:53 AM, said:

 

I'd rather if you'd start a new discussion about all this in the general discussion area. All this has nothing to do with the Greek language anymore.

 

Thanks!

I apologize that this has gotten off topic. Nobody else wanted to discuss John, and FriendofGreece and I got a bit carried away. We should probably be private messaging each other. If you would like to join our conversation, I can post in the general area. God bless.

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Guest FriendofGreece

I am sorry to hear about your phone and losing all you wrote. There is no rush, please take your time. I think the posts would be too long to put in PM's. Maybe you could just open a new topic in General, refer to this topic, and we can just continue from there. Thanks.

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Guest FriendofGreece

Hi Anonymous Who,

 

How is it going? Don't fret too much about what you should reply. Our discussion is more an exchange of ideas rather than what is right or wrong. When we talk about God, in my opinion, it is really deeply personal. It is not books that will tell us how we think or feel about God; rather, only us we know.

 

God bless you, my friend!

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