What books are you currently reading?

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Wrangler

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Do you think you’re going to go to heaven when you die? If so - and the average Christian does - then you’re not a Christian.
I prefer thought translations. While the common man talks about ‘going to heaven’ the learned man knows we are bound for a New Earth.

I don’t quibble over such things with the common man. Furthermore, I deny the claim it is a requirement for salvation.

I have heard - and rejected claims that if you do not do X, then you are not a real man or real Christian.

You’ve encouraged me to NOT read the author’s writings. This too, I appreciate. Thanks!
 

Wrangler

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Aha! Now you understand!
My original point is not altered by my decision of what books to read, silly!

My original point is general; that reading is an end to itself, a joy and a hobby. I did not specify which books are on my personal reading list and which books are not.

I think you gave a nebulous reply to my post about epistemology and some may say my selection criteria examplifies confirmation bias. Don't care. An atheist philosopher introduced to the idea of thinking down to the fundamentals of an issue, which makes following a long, logical train (i.e., a book) unnecessary. It is called axiomatic analysis.

A pastor who retired did not use these words but applied the concept in her ministry. She said "Whenever I hear that family members are not talking to each other, I don't have to know the details to know their problem. They don't have enough grace."

I'm interested in reading more about what I am interested in and not interested in reading more about ideologies that have already been debunked - by me or others. While there is a body of work by what is called The Church Fathers, at this time, I am primarily interested in more deeply understanding what we call 'the word of God' is and means.
 

Mr E

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My original point is not altered by my decision of what books to read, silly!

My original point is general; that reading is an end to itself, a joy and a hobby. I did not specify which books are on my personal reading list and which books are not.

I think you gave a nebulous reply to my post about epistemology and some may say my selection criteria examplifies confirmation bias. Don't care. An atheist philosopher introduced to the idea of thinking down to the fundamentals of an issue, which makes following a long, logical train (i.e., a book) unnecessary. It is called axiomatic analysis.

A pastor who retired did not use these words but applied the concept in her ministry. She said "Whenever I hear that family members are not talking to each other, I don't have to know the details to know their problem. They don't have enough grace."

I'm interested in reading more about what I am interested in and not interested in reading more about ideologies that have already been debunked - by me or others. While there is a body of work by what is called The Church Fathers, at this time, I am primarily interested in more deeply understanding what we call 'the word of God' is and means.

lol.... well don't bother reading 'Wild at Heart' because you'll get nothing from it.

(I say this to make sure you do). How's that for axiomatic?
 

Matthias

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Salvation Of The Rich Man wasn’t quite what I anticipated. Clement (of Alexandria) ends with a story about John the Apostle which I had not heard before. I would like to find out if the story is preserved in anyone else’s writings. (I‘m doubtful that it is.)

I’m currently reading Rescuing Jesus from the Christians, written by Clayton Sullivan (a retired Baptist pastor whom I met around 20-25 years ago.) It’s been in my personal library and on my reading list for a couple of decades. [Clement of Alexandria, and my planned reading of Origen next week, lead me to feel the time for reading it has, at long last, arrived!]
 

Matthias

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I finished reading Rescuing Jesus from the Christians this morning. Why did I put off reading it for nearly a quarter of a century? Short answer, a misperception on my part.

When I met Sullivan years ago, he introduced himself as “a beat up Baptist”. I was raised Southern Baptist, and left. He was raised Southern Baptist, and remained.

What could he tell me about the Southern Baptist Church that I didn’t already know?

I thought his book would be similar in purpose to that written by Harold O.J. Brown (with it’s theme of “come back to historical orthodox trinitarianism” - something which I frequently reconsider doing.) It isn’t.

It didn’t occur to me at the time of our meeting to ask Sullivan who it was that had ”beaten him up“ over the years. His book barely even mentions his connection with the SBC. Having read the book now, I have a pretty good idea who his maulers were and are.

Sullivan is a trinitarian. Trinitarians who read his book will be positively infuriated by him. Non-trinitarians who read his book will feel as if they have been on a roller coaster ride - at once thrilled and nauseated.

I had originally planned on reading The Instructor (written by Origen’s teacher) before reading Origen again. Change of plan. I’ll read instead the Didache (authors unknown) this afternoon before tackling Origen tomorrow. I’m planning now to read The Instructor after - how long after, I don’t know - I read Origen.

One thing remains undetermined - which work of Origen to begin with. I’ve gone back and forth on the question for months. I’ll sleep on it tonight and go with whatever strikes my fancy when I wake up in the morning - very uncharacteristic of me, but fitting, I think, when dealing with Origen. (Let the erratic deal with the erratic!)
 

Matthias

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I hope you enjoy it. Thought to be one of the earliest organizational writings-

I did. It is among the first extra-biblical writings that was required reading when I was a student. I think this was either my third or fourth time reading it.

We students were from a wide theological background. I remember well classroom discussions concerning which among these things were and weren’t practiced in the various churches we were reared in. There was some commonality, but quite a bit of disparity; we were a microcosm of the unity and diversity that exists in Christianity.

Sullivan mentioned the Didache (aka The Teaching of the Twelve Apostles) near the end of his book. (That’s what prompted me to read it this afternoon.)

Sullivan’s point is that Christianity isn’t static. Things, including doctrine, have changed over the centuries, and we [Christians] aren’t obligated to go along with those changes.
 

Matthias

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I had originally planned on reading The Instructor (written by Origen’s teacher) before reading Origen again. Change of plan. I’ll read instead the Didache (authors unknown) this afternoon before tackling Origen tomorrow. I’m planning now to read The Instructor after - how long after, I don’t know - I read Origen.

One thing remains undetermined - which work of Origen to begin with. I’ve gone back and forth on the question for months. I’ll sleep on it tonight and go with whatever strikes my fancy when I wake up in the morning - very uncharacteristic of me, but fitting, I think, when dealing with Origen. (Let the erratic deal with the erratic!)

Sleeping on it produced an unanticipated result. This morning I read A Letter To Origen From Africanus About The History of Susanna, A Letter From Origen To Africanus, and A Letter From Origen To Gregory. I hadn’t read any of the three before and hadn’t planned to read them when I got around to reading Origen again.

Reading the letters helped me to decide which work of Origen to take up first - On The First Principles. Starting Book 1 today.

Down the rabbit hole I go. Anyone care to join me?
 

Matthias

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I neglected to mention that On The First Principles is a four volume work. One down, three to go.

So - someone might be wondering - how’s it going?

Reverend Dr. Spencer‘s writes in a footnote -

“The language used by Origen in this and the preceding chapter affords a remarkable illustration of that occasional extravagance in statements of facts and opinions, as well as of those strange imaginings and wild speculations as to the meaning of Holy Scrpture, which brought upon him subsequently grave charges of error and heretical pravity.”

It’s going like that.

What does Origen say? -

“… it is proper to treat in the following pages according to our dogmatic belief, i.e., in agreement with the creed of the Church.”*

Well, then. On to Book 2.

* What creed is Origen referring to he? He is writing 100 years before the Nicene Creed was produced.
 
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Mr E

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I neglected to mention that On The First Principles is a four volume work. One down, three to go.

So - someone might be wondering - how’s it going?

Reverend Dr. Spencer‘s writes in a footnote -

“The language used by Origen in this and the preceding chapter affords a remarkable illustration of that occasional extravagance in statements of facts and opinions, as well as of those strange imaginings and wild speculations as to the meaning of Holy Scrpture, which brought upon him subsequently grave charges of error and heretical pravity.”

It’s going like that.

What does Origen say? -

“… it is proper to treat in the following pages according to our dogmatic belief, i.e., in agreement with the creed of the Church.”*

Well, then. On to Book 2.

* What creed is Origen referring to he? He is writing 100 years before the Nicene Creed was produced.

It's like saying that everything you say agrees with the Moderator's position of everything, because they are the Administrators and are in charge and so if you write, it must be in agreement with the powers that be.... i.e. official creed, doctrine and dogma.

Of course you are free to disagree and NOT believe.... but you couldn't/can't write about it.
 
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Matthias

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It's like saying that everything you say agrees with the Moderator's position of everything, because they are the Administrators and are in charge and so if you write, it must be in agreement with the powers that be.... i.e. official creed, doctrine and dogma.

Sounds like a dual purpose new thread topic to me.

Of course you are free to disagree and NOT believe.... but you couldn't/can't write about it.

Start the thread in one of the “Christians Only” forums of the board … and prove yourself a prophet. :)
 

Matthias

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Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of death
Rode the one.

I’ve come this far, might as well ride it to the end now. Currently reading Book 4 of On First Principles.

Origen to the left of me, Origen to the right,
Origen in front of me,
Volleyed and thundered.
 

Mr E

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Half a league, half a league,
Half a league onward,
All in the valley of death
Rode the one.

I’ve come this far, might as well ride it to the end now. Currently reading Book 4 of On First Principles.

Origen to the left of me, Origen to the right,
Origen in front of me,
Volleyed and thundered.

Here I am..... stuck in the middle with you.
 
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