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Source: (consider it) Thread: "Who Would Jesus Bomb?" bumper sticker
BWSmith
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I like bumper stickers with trivia questions. Saw a fun one last week:

"Who Would Jesus Bomb?"

Give up? The correct answers are: (drumroll...)

- The money changers in the Temple
- Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin
- All Jerusalem (70 AD)

(Would have also accepted "Herod" (either Antipas or 'The Great'), as well as the Philistines, Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Girgashites, Jebusites, Amalekites, Israel (722 BC), Judah (586 BC), and entire family of King Ahab.)

Good to see that ordinary people are so interested in historical Jesus studies that they are asking questions with their cars!

(I hope someone stops this person and provides the correct answer. Wonder what the prize is?) [Biased]

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roybart
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Are you sure that this isn't being asked ironically ... with the expected answer being "No one"? Or is your OP ironical? So complex, I'm ... [Confused]

[ 12. March 2013, 20:13: Message edited by: roybart ]

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"The consolations of the imaginary are not imaginary consolations."
-- Roger Scruton

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BWSmith
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(Yes, I am being facetious.) [Smile]

The bumper sticker is a play on the "What Would Jesus Do?" slogan. It is employed by American anti-war activists to coerce self-professed Christians (with a shallow view of the actual Jesus of history) into believing that "following Jesus" requires opposition to American military policy (in one form or another).

There are countless threads that could be written on whether one agrees or disagrees with anti-war politics, but the concern I have with them is dragging Jesus into the argument and using his name in contexts that are better suited for nonviolence activists like Mahatma Gandhi or Martin Luther King.

The thrust of the bumper sticker is the implicit claim that Jesus was the patron saint of non-violence, which is controversial. To reach this conclusion, one must over-emphasize the tactics of the Kingdom of God (taking up the cross, whoever lives by the sword dies by it, etc) and overlook the whole strategy of the Kingdom (evil in the world is real, unrepentant bad people are real, and God is taking steps to do away with it).

Given that the Jesus of the Bible directly attacked the money-changers of the Temple, and indirectly attacked Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin (and framed his entire message on the impending destruction of Jerusalem), it's not accurate to claim that Jesus was a "pacifist" seeking non-violence for its own sake.

Also, given Jesus' further complete faithfulness to the God of the OT (who effectively "bombed" quite a few people, including Israel and Judah), one would have to answer the real question of "When God destroyed all those people, with which particular destruction did Jesus disagree with God?"

So in short, I think it's clear that "Who Would Jesus Bomb" has clear answers in both the Old and New Testaments. What that implies for us today is complex, and merits more discussion than a quick slogan on a bumper sticker...

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the giant cheeseburger
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quote:
Originally posted by BWSmith:
Give up? The correct answers are: (drumroll...)

- The money changers in the Temple
- Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin
- All Jerusalem (70 AD)

(Would have also accepted "Herod" (either Antipas or 'The Great'), as well as the Philistines, Canaanites, Hittites, Amorites, Kenites, Kenizzites, Kadmonites, Perizzites, Rephaites, Girgashites, Jebusites, Amalekites, Israel (722 BC), Judah (586 BC), and entire family of King Ahab.)

You forgot Satan, goats (Matthew 25) and seasonal fruit trees (Mark 11).

Peter would have been in with a chance every now and then, mainly whenever he engaged his mouth before the brain was in gear.

Ninevah is not an acceptable answer, we know nothing came of that.

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Mark Betts

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I think there might be some truth in the sentiment of the sticker. What about the story of the good Samaritan? The woman caught in adultery? "Blessed are the peacemakers?"

It seems often, whilst Jesus never condemned the law, nor the figures of the Old Testament, he showed us a better way, which was non-violent.

I'm sounding like a proper liberal here, but oh well, so be it.

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"We are not some casual and meaningless product of evolution. Each of us is the result of a thought of God. Each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary."

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Hedgehog

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quote:
Originally posted by BWSmith:
Also, given Jesus' further complete faithfulness to the God of the OT (who effectively "bombed" quite a few people, including Israel and Judah), one would have to answer the real question of "When God destroyed all those people, with which particular destruction did Jesus disagree with God?"

Don't leave out "anybody not in Noah's immediate family"!

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"We must regain the conviction that we need one another, that we have a shared responsibility for others and the world, and that being good and decent are worth it."--Pope Francis, Laudato Si'

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Gamaliel
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Only in America ...

[Roll Eyes]

Whoops, I've been told off a few times for that ...

Short answer. Nobody.

The Sermon on The Mount and the thing about the tower that collapsed in Luke 13 and the Galileans 'whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices' (Luke 13:1-5) suggests that he's not that interesting in judging who is a worse sinner than who ... and hence deserving of being 'bombed'. Yet, 'unless you repent you shall all likewise perish.'

The OP seems to betray a very literal approach to some of the stories of apparent 'bombings' in the OT ... I tend to take these things rather more figuratively or else as a 'God-on-our-side-not-on-theirs' thing on the part of the writers/compilers ... and there's always that puzzling thing in Joshua when the 'Captain of the Hosts of the Lord' appears and when asked, 'Are you for us or for our enemies?' doesn't answer in the affirmative to either - Joshua 5:13-15.

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Praise the Lord for He is kind.

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Arethosemyfeet
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quote:
Originally posted by Mark Betts:
I think there might be some truth in the sentiment of the sticker. What about the story of the good Samaritan? The woman caught in adultery? "Blessed are the peacemakers?"

It seems often, whilst Jesus never condemned the law, nor the figures of the Old Testament, he showed us a better way, which was non-violent.

I'm sounding like a proper liberal here, but oh well, so be it.

Reality has a known liberal bias [Biased]

As I read it, Jesus didn't directly attack the money lenders. The whip was used to drive the animals out, and he overturned the tables the money lenders were using. It was an act of non-violent civil disobedience, like the destruction of GM crops trials or the disruption of coal deliveries to a power station. It was a protest, not a violent act.

[ 12. March 2013, 21:15: Message edited by: Arethosemyfeet ]

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Martin60
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Jesus was the greatest non-violent activist of all time. Gandhi and Dr. King walked His walk. As all Christians should and hardly any have or do.

How one justifies Jesus being ambiguous on war from an undeconstructed narrative of the violent preincarnate God narrative, I don't know.

Without putting the cart of Christian acquiescence and worse to violence before the Horse.

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Love wins

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rolyn
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That sticker would have been appropriate on fuselages of Lancaster and Heinkel bomber planes .

I recently heard an ironic account of how , during WW2 , a formation of British bombers passed an incoming formation of German bombers over the North Sea .
There was no exchange of fire , instead the opposing pilots gave each-other the customary wing salute and continued on their way to drop respective payloads on Churches and civilians.

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Change is the only certainty of existence

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Eutychus
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[citation needed]

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Organ Builder
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quote:
Originally posted by BWSmith:
The bumper sticker is a play on the "What Would Jesus Do?" slogan. It is employed by American anti-war activists to coerce self-professed Christians (with a shallow view of the actual Jesus of history) into believing that "following Jesus" requires opposition to American military policy (in one form or another).

...

What that implies for us today is complex, and merits more discussion than a quick slogan on a bumper sticker...

Oddly enough, most things which persuade people to deface their car with a bumper sticker with an adhesive straight from the maw of Hell merit more discussion than a quick slogan on a bumper sticker.

I would suggest, though, that in the American context this slogan isn't so much a call for opposition to anything the military may do as a call to recognize that unquestioning loyalty to anything done in the name of the military isn't particularly Christian either. The American military (one hopes) has some of the best intelligence gathering capabilities in the world, but they don't quite reach the level of omniscience yet--so whatever God may have done in the OT, and whatever Jesus may have done in the Temple probably shouldn't be used as a justification to bomb the Hell out of some village in a third-world country.

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How desperately difficult it is to be honest with oneself. It is much easier to be honest with other people.--E.F. Benson

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Gamaliel
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So the German bombers didn't have their customary escort of fighters, did they Rolyn?

[Roll Eyes]

I'd imagine that this story has just as much credence as the one told around here - that the reason the Germans didn't bomb Stoke-on-Trent was that they flew over it and saw the smoke from The Potteries/that the place was a wreck (delete version of choice) and so assumed that the job had already been done.

It dates back to a jokey comment in one of the newspapers in the 1960s apparently ...

And there were a few bombs jumped on Stoke - but not that many.

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Gamaliel
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I could get told off here by suggesting that there is something unspeakably naff about Christian bumper-stickers of whatever stripe.

Over on another board I came across an American cleric (I will spare the details) who complained that he was regularly called a moron, insulted and even 'given the finger' by people who took exception to him driving around with a bumper sticker advertising a Creation Museum.

I told him he'd got off lightly.

If it was down to me his car would be impounded and crushed in one of those smart industrial crushing machines ...

[Big Grin]

I mean, how lacking in self-awareness and theological literacy do you have to be to drive around with a bumper-sticker advertising a Creation Museum. A Creation Museum?!

[Help] [Eek!]

You might as well walk around with a whopping big label on your forehead saying, 'I'm an idiot, take the piss out of me ...'

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Crœsos
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quote:
Originally posted by BWSmith:
Given that the Jesus of the Bible directly attacked the money-changers of the Temple, and indirectly attacked Caiaphas and the Sanhedrin (and framed his entire message on the impending destruction of Jerusalem), it's not accurate to claim that Jesus was a "pacifist" seeking non-violence for its own sake.

Also, given Jesus' further complete faithfulness to the God of the OT (who effectively "bombed" quite a few people, including Israel and Judah), one would have to answer the real question of "When God destroyed all those people, with which particular destruction did Jesus disagree with God?"

So in short, I think it's clear that "Who Would Jesus Bomb" has clear answers in both the Old and New Testaments. What that implies for us today is complex, and merits more discussion than a quick slogan on a bumper sticker...

Shorter BWSmith: This [video] is not a satire.

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Humani nil a me alienum puto

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Dafyd
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quote:
Originally posted by BWSmith:
It is employed by American anti-war activists to coerce self-professed Christians (with a shallow view of the actual Jesus of history) into believing that "following Jesus" requires opposition to American military policy (in one form or another).

How does it do that then? Does it leap off the bumper when a Christian drives past and wrap itself around the Christian's neck strangling them until the Christian believes that? Does it hang around in their car singing obnoxious worship songs until they cannot bear it any more?
A bumper sticker that can actually coerce people must be an amazing thing.

For anyone else who gets worked up over left-wing Christian slogans on placards, here's another one I like:
"Obama is not a brown-skinned socialist who gives away free health care. You're thinking of Jesus".

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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Oscar the Grouch

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I'm surprised no-one has so far mentioned the songwriter David Rovics, who wrote the blistering song "Who Would Jesus Bomb?".

This is savage indictment of the religious political right in the US, highlighting the deep discrepancy between their avowed "love of the Lord" and their often violent actions against Muslims (and anyone else regarded as "enemies of the Lord").

To be frank - I'm surprised that a rightwing religious nutter hasn't tried to take David Rovics out with one of their beloved semi-automatics. Check out some of his other songs - especially "Promised Land", "They're building a wall", "Occupation" and "After the revolution"

I'm not sure I agree with him in all things, but he's certainly a powerful protest voice.

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Faradiu, dundeibáwa weyu lárigi weyu

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Kaplan Corday
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The bumper sticker slogan reminds me of an old man I used to know who was a conscientious objector in WWII, and who used to ask, “Can you imagine Jesus behind a machine gun?”

To deny any role to Jesus, the eternal Second Person of the Godhead, in the violent activities of God in the OT, is to be guilty of a theological heresy such as Marcionism, or a Christological heresy such as Adoptionism.

And then there’s the book of Revelation, about which I don’t have any pet theory of interpretation, but which on the face of it is eschatological, and describes horrific judgmental violence on God’s part.

In other words the triune God of Christian orthodoxy, of whom Jesus is a part, has carried out, and will carry out, violence equaling or exceeding anything ever committed by bombs or machine guns.

On the general subject of bumper stickers, those which hijack Jesus to push for a national health scheme (which I in fact support) or a (usually highly selective) pacifism, are just as mindless and unscrupulous as those which claim Jesus’ unqualified support for the United States (and I am pro-American).

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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Kaplan - that rather depends on whether you accept the God of extreme violence. I don't.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Boogie

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quote:
Originally posted by Kaplan Corday:

In other words the triune God of Christian orthodoxy, of whom Jesus is a part, has carried out, and will carry out, violence equaling or exceeding anything ever committed by bombs or machine guns.

Why?

Yes - OT folks believed in a God who would carry out such violence.

But we don't have to, do we?

Yes - God allows violent earthquakes etc, but they are a consequence of the way the universe works - not deliberate cruelty.

Can you really believe in, or worship, a God who would target innocent folks with bombs and machine guns?

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
quote:
Originally posted by Kaplan Corday:

In other words the triune God of Christian orthodoxy, of whom Jesus is a part, has carried out, and will carry out, violence equaling or exceeding anything ever committed by bombs or machine guns.

Why?

Yes - OT folks believed in a God who would carry out such violence.

But we don't have to, do we?

Yes - God allows violent earthquakes etc, but they are a consequence of the way the universe works - not deliberate cruelty.

Can you really believe in, or worship, a God who would target innocent folks with bombs and machine guns?

Some people can. We've been there before. I can't. Therefore I don't.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Boogie

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That's my point - we don't have to.

The kind of God we believe in will always be our own choice. I think the best way to see God's character is to look at Jesus' character, as revealed in the gospels.

Which brings us back to the absurdity of the bumper sticker.

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Garden. Room. Walk

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Laurelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:

Over on another board I came across an American cleric (I will spare the details) who complained that he was regularly called a moron, insulted and even 'given the finger' by people who took exception to him driving around with a bumper sticker advertising a Creation Museum.

I mean, how lacking in self-awareness and theological literacy do you have to be to drive around with a bumper-sticker advertising a Creation Museum. A Creation Museum?!

I don't have a high opinion of the Creation Museum. But I seriously have to wonder about folk who get so incensed by a daft bumper sticker that they would actually 'give the finger' to someone who sported one. Seriously? So the guy is a YEC and has a bumper sticker advertising the Creation Museum. This might make me smile and roll my eyes, but I wouldn't abuse somebody verbally over it.

Perspective! (Of course the YEC getting bent out of shape needs it, too.) But people have a right to publicly express their opinions/convictions, including those we find daft. Who is his bumper sticker hurting, for goodness sake?

I can think of far more offensive things.

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"I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor." J.R.R. Tolkien

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Gamaliel
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No, it's not to be guilty of any of those heresies, Kaplan. It's simply to acknowledge that the OT is effectively 'Christianised' through the interpretation we now put on it post-Incarnation. I recognise that this causes some difficulties too, though and the Jewish people wouldn't thank me for saying it, of course.

It's a bit like the more moderate Muslims interpreting Jihad in terms of an inner spiritual struggle rather than war, bloodshed and massacre.

Now you're going to ask me whether I believe that the events described in Joshua, the Pentateuch (Plagues of Egypt etc) are literal or not.

To be honest, in some cases I'm not sure ... but I do find it difficult to apply a literal interpretation to 'fire from heaven' consuming the captains of 50s and their men in the incident with Elijah.

But even if it were literal, we have Jesus sharply rebuking his own disciples when they wanted to call down 'fire from heaven' on those who did not receive them.

As for Revelation, well, it's clearly Apocalyptic in language and tone and so isn't necessarily describing divine scorched-earth policies and blightings, plagues and literal fire ...

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Gamaliel
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Of course, Laurelin, I'm not advocating 'giving the finger' to anyone, YECies or otherwise. If anything, giving a guy like that the finger would only convince him of the rightness of his cause ... after all, he is surely being persecuted for righteousness's sake ...

[Roll Eyes]

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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quetzalcoatl
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quote:
Originally posted by Laurelin:
quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:

Over on another board I came across an American cleric (I will spare the details) who complained that he was regularly called a moron, insulted and even 'given the finger' by people who took exception to him driving around with a bumper sticker advertising a Creation Museum.

I mean, how lacking in self-awareness and theological literacy do you have to be to drive around with a bumper-sticker advertising a Creation Museum. A Creation Museum?!

I don't have a high opinion of the Creation Museum. But I seriously have to wonder about folk who get so incensed by a daft bumper sticker that they would actually 'give the finger' to someone who sported one. Seriously? So the guy is a YEC and has a bumper sticker advertising the Creation Museum. This might make me smile and roll my eyes, but I wouldn't abuse somebody verbally over it.

Perspective! (Of course the YEC getting bent out of shape needs it, too.) But people have a right to publicly express their opinions/convictions, including those we find daft. Who is his bumper sticker hurting, for goodness sake?

I can think of far more offensive things.

On the other hand, the creationists in the US are actively trying to sabotage science education, and in a sense, science itself. I don't think this is something trivial really. It's an attack on human knowledge itself.

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I can't talk to you today; I talked to two people yesterday.

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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True dat. Creationism is just a lunatic fringe position in the UK, but is a real political force in the US, so it's a little easier to understand the degree of feeling.

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Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Gamaliel
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I know you're not a dispensationalist, Kaplan, but don't you think it's a sad state of affairs when the Brethren I knew used to preach that we didn't have to take any notice of the Sermon on the Mount because that applied to a different 'dispensation' and yet the blood and thunder and judgement and smitings and so on were all to be drooled over?

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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deano
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He he he….

Do you really want my list? Because the list of where I want to bomb exactly matches the list of places that I think Jesus would bomb!

It’s a long list. Not empty by any means.

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"The moral high ground is slowly being bombed to oblivion. " - Supermatelot

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Boogie

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quote:
Originally posted by deano:

Do you really want my list? Because the list of where I want to bomb exactly matches the list of places that I think Jesus would bomb!

It’s a long list. Not empty by any means.

Go on then, what is your list?

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Garden. Room. Walk

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deano
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Ira... Nah. I can't be bothered with another Hell call, and this thread has Hell call written all over it.

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"The moral high ground is slowly being bombed to oblivion. " - Supermatelot

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Boogie

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quote:
Originally posted by deano:
Ira... Nah. I can't be bothered with another Hell call, and this thread has Hell call written all over it.

I suggest you make that list, then visit each place on it. You'll change your mind in every case.

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Garden. Room. Walk

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Gamaliel
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How do you know that Jesus wouldn't want to bomb you, deano?

[Razz]

You see how it works don't you?
Imagine yourself on the receiving end of the 'bomb' and somehow it doesn't seem such a good idea.

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Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

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deano
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Well I've been to Mansfield so that theory is pretty much out of the window.

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"The moral high ground is slowly being bombed to oblivion. " - Supermatelot

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Laurelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
I know you're not a dispensationalist, Kaplan, but don't you think it's a sad state of affairs when the Brethren I knew used to preach that we didn't have to take any notice of the Sermon on the Mount because that applied to a different 'dispensation' ...

WHUT. [Mad] I grew up in the Brethren and never heard anything so monstrously silly. [Help] (There were other issues, to be sure ...)

quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
I suggest you make that list, then visit each place on it. You'll change your mind in every case.

Very wise. [Cool]


I'm nailing my colours to the mast and I say, in no uncertain terms, that Jesus Christ will not bomb anybody, neither does He sanction us bombing other people.

I'm not a pacifist, btw. I believe that a nation-state has a right to defend itself against an aggressor. I'm thinking of Bomber Command. Of the 55,000 young men who perished on those missions ... and the bombs they dropped on German cities, so that the Nazi war machine could be dealt a serious blow. Were those young men evil? - no, of course not. Was my country right, to try to take out the Nazi war machine? - no question in my mind about that. Is it terrible to think of the German civilians who died in those raids? - yes, it is. (And I blame their government more than the Allied forces.)

But to claim this was a holy act? - you have to be kidding me. Jesus sanctioning bombing? No freaking way.

Gah. These issues are difficult, and not black-and-white.

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"I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor." J.R.R. Tolkien

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Gamaliel
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Indeed, and yes, Laurelin, I was exaggerating to make a point about the Brethren. It's a rhetorical device called hyperbole. I use it a lot here on the Boards and I often get 'called' on it. Perhaps someone ought to introduce a 'I'm-speaking-hyperbolically' smiley.

To be fair, the Brethren I knew were nowhere near as bad as I've made out with that example ... although there was a mismatch there, of course.

Very broadly and generally speaking, I find that the more 'catholic' traditions tend to emphasise the Gospels and the more evangelical ones to emphasise the Epistles. In the Brethren you could sometimes be forgiven for thinking that the Gospels were purely there to provide a proof-text mine for eschatological speculation ('the signs of the end of the age') and that the Parables and moral teachings had little practical application or value ... although I'm exaggerating there, but you know what I mean.

The more serious point I'm trying to make is that those with a more conservative theology will often accuse 'liberals' of being highly selective when, very often, they are just as selective themselves.

So, for instance, you might get a conservative evangelical railing against the lib'rul tendency to downplay the judgemental and violent aspects in favour of the lovey-dovey, sweetness and light ones, when they themselves might be doing the opposite - ie. adopting a judgemental and often vindictive approach and overlooking some of the social and ethical issues.

Rather than 'bombing' either of them, I suspect that Christ might have a few gentle but very incisive things to say to those at each pole of these tendencies.

--------------------
Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Organ Builder
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# 12478

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quote:
Originally posted by deano:
Because the list of where I want to bomb exactly matches the list of places that I think Jesus would bomb!

It’s a long list. Not empty by any means.

As someone wiser than myself once said:

“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”

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How desperately difficult it is to be honest with oneself. It is much easier to be honest with other people.--E.F. Benson

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by Organ Builder:
quote:
Originally posted by deano:
Because the list of where I want to bomb exactly matches the list of places that I think Jesus would bomb!

It’s a long list. Not empty by any means.

As someone wiser than myself once said:

“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.”

I have a shorter version:

“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image.”

--------------------
Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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Dafyd
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quote:
Originally posted by Kaplan Corday:
In other words the triune God of Christian orthodoxy, of whom Jesus is a part, has carried out, and will carry out, violence equaling or exceeding anything ever committed by bombs or machine guns.

It rather depends upon your hermeneutic, doesn't it? The orthodox hermeneutic is to interpret everything in the Bible as leading up to or pointing to or fulfilled in the Gospels. Jesus is the definitive revelation of the Father. Other revelations do not trump Jesus. If there is a seeming discrepancy, then you take the Gospel at face value and reconcile the other passage to it.

So the Gospels at face value proclaim that God is the Prince of Peace who comes riding on a donkey, and the foal of a donkey, to Jerusalem, and Revelation or Judges at face value proclaim God as a God of retributive violence on a vast scale. The Catholic response is to take the Gospel passage as normative. Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Any interpretation of Revelation or Judges that implies Jesus was only pretending or biding his time or issuing a temporary dispensation, and that Jesus is therefore really a God of violence is not orthodox.

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we remain, thanks to original sin, much in love with talking about, rather than with, one another. Rowan Williams

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Laurelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
Indeed, and yes, Laurelin, I was exaggerating to make a point about the Brethren. It's a rhetorical device called hyperbole. I use it a lot here on the Boards and I often get 'called' on it. Perhaps someone ought to introduce a 'I'm-speaking-hyperbolically' smiley.

I know what hyperbole is! Sheesh. [Razz]

Often used it myself, in other contexts.

I've encountered enough theological silliness in my time to think that the example you gave was a real one. Never mind. [Cool]

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"I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor." J.R.R. Tolkien

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la vie en rouge
Parisienne
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Maybe the guy getting the finger all the time just wasn't a very good driver? [Two face]

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Rent my holiday home in the South of France

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Penny S
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quote:
Originally posted by Laurelin:
I'm thinking of Bomber Command. Of the 55,000 young men who perished on those missions ... and the bombs they dropped on German cities, so that the Nazi war machine could be dealt a serious blow. Were those young men evil? - no, of course not. Was my country right, to try to take out the Nazi war machine? - no question in my mind about that. Is it terrible to think of the German civilians who died in those raids? - yes, it is. (And I blame their government more than the Allied forces.)

But to claim this was a holy act? - you have to be kidding me. Jesus sanctioning bombing? No freaking way.

Gah. These issues are difficult, and not black-and-white.

I grew up in a pacifist family, and did not think much about Bomber Command until I made a friend whose father was a pilot in it, bombing Peenemunde (good) and other places (hmm), and always returning. I did not realise how many had died until recently (though I knew that on one sortie most of the group were shot down), nor how very young they were (he was about 20), and then my opinion of the government of the time and their raid strategy became very much worse. They knew how many were dying each night, and they kept on sending them. (On Google Earth, their scheme to show overlays of the past has only a few spots in Germany - not Peenemunde, but Dresden, Hamburg, and other names which are familiar, and a closeup of the images shows what the source was. Very questionable use, I think. Our government knew what they were doing there, as well.)

I had an image of the court in the film "A matter of life and death", a huge arena full of those young men - they would fill an average size soccer stadium. And the words from the Kipling poem which accompanies his story about Elizabeth I, "Gloriana", sending young men to die in opposing the Armada, in which the boy Dan accuses her of callousness, and she replies that he would not understand matters of state.
"Valour and innocence have latterly gone hence, To certain death, by certain shame attended...".

Kipling's son's death must have informed that. Bomber Command certainly received that shame which belonged to others. Kipling at least had sent his own son. Those in power sent myriads of other people's children.

And deano, bombs don't target the bad only, or only destroy the terror weapons. Bombs reduce the innocent to ashes and what that POW who was on the radio the other week saw and smelled in the cellar shelter after the firestorm. Jesus bomb, deano? Or are you using de Montfort's logic, that it doesn't matter if you kill the just along with the unjust, because God will know his own?

[ 13. March 2013, 14:26: Message edited by: Penny S ]

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Boogie

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I was brought up to see Germans as the enemy. My grandmother would spit at the word 'German'.

Of course, my view softened with time. But it was only when my son moved to Germany and we visited his GF's home town of Heilbronn that it came home to me. Heilbronn was bombed, very much like Coventry. The city centre was completely destroyed and the surrounding boroughs heavily damaged. Within one half hour 6,500 residents perished, most incinerated beyond recognition. The museum there was every much as affecting as those in Coventry.

We were with his GF's parents and we all had tears in our eyes - war is terrible.

War is necessary, sometimes - but only as the best of two evils when there is no other choice. Not as first choice action - ever.

--------------------
Garden. Room. Walk

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Gamaliel
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Yes, I knew you'd know what hyperbole is, Laurelin, I was just winding you up ... [Biased]

Sorry. I'm a bit of a tease and it can get wearing.

I was exaggerating about the Beatitudes thing, of course, but I have heard and read Brethren people say that it doesn't apply to us ... [Roll Eyes]

The challenge though, is for us who DO believe that it applies to us to actually live by it ... something I signally fail to do.

At least these Brethren types have the excuse that they didn't believe it was applicable to them ...

[Biased]

@la vie en rouge ... [Big Grin]

--------------------
Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Sylvander
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# 12857

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Fine to hear you got to see another side of Germany. I am surprised the museum said much about the city's destruction, though. When I went to school the bombing of German cities never figured in public discourse or museums. While the results were obvious - German cities I grew up in were all made of hideous concrete blocks - the message was: "We got what we deserved and that's all there is to it." Remembering it meant being a Nazi.

Methinks the question in the OP is a wrong question to ask.
It should be "Whom would Jesus bomb?"

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Gamaliel
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On a more serious note, I would meet Kaplan part way in saying that there is a danger in becoming somewhat Marcionite if we see the God of the OT as different to the gracious God of the NT ... but I'm with Dafyd. There's a progressive revelation going on and Jesus trumps everything that came before.

That said, I agree with the point that was often made back in my more full-on evangelical days that God's dealings with people have always been on the basis of grace ...

I can't remember which thread it was on now but Mudfrog's recently opined, if I understood him correctly, that grace came in at the Incarnation. It predates that. There's the ram in the thicket with Abraham and Isaac, there's Abraham believing God and it being 'credited to him as righteousness ' (however we understand that).

--------------------
Let us with a gladsome mind
Praise the Lord for He is kind.

http://philthebard.blogspot.com

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Laurelin
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quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
I was exaggerating about the Beatitudes thing, of course, but I have heard and read Brethren people say that it doesn't apply to us ... [Roll Eyes]

So if you've actually heard people say this, you weren't, in fact, exaggerating, or at least all that much. [Confused]

Anyway, whatever. Now that I think about it, I suppose I haven't heard the Beatitudes preached on nearly enough. There used to be, almost, the impression in some evangelical circles that the Epistles were the theological 'meat' whilst the Gospels were more like the 'bread and butter' ... a shocking approach to Scripture, really, from so-called 'inerrantists' (what could be more weighty than the words of Jesus Himself?!) but a view that has been challenged by evangelical scholars and teachers (thankfully).

quote:
Originally posted by Dafyd:
It rather depends upon your hermeneutic, doesn't it? The orthodox hermeneutic is to interpret everything in the Bible as leading up to or pointing to or fulfilled in the Gospels. Jesus is the definitive revelation of the Father. Other revelations do not trump Jesus. If there is a seeming discrepancy, then you take the Gospel at face value and reconcile the other passage to it.

So the Gospels at face value proclaim that God is the Prince of Peace who comes riding on a donkey, and the foal of a donkey, to Jerusalem, and Revelation or Judges at face value proclaim God as a God of retributive violence on a vast scale. The Catholic response is to take the Gospel passage as normative. Jesus is the Prince of Peace. Any interpretation of Revelation or Judges that implies Jesus was only pretending or biding his time or issuing a temporary dispensation, and that Jesus is therefore really a God of violence is not orthodox.

[Overused]

But Gamaliel also makes a very good point.

quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
On a more serious note, I would meet Kaplan part way in saying that there is a danger in becoming somewhat Marcionite if we see the God of the OT as different to the gracious God of the NT ... but I'm with Dafyd. There's a progressive revelation going on and Jesus trumps everything that came before.

Yes.

[ 13. March 2013, 15:06: Message edited by: Laurelin ]

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"I fear that to me Siamese cats belong to the fauna of Mordor." J.R.R. Tolkien

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Karl: Liberal Backslider
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quote:
Originally posted by Laurelin:
quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
I was exaggerating about the Beatitudes thing, of course, but I have heard and read Brethren people say that it doesn't apply to us ... [Roll Eyes]

So if you've actually heard people say this, you weren't, in fact, exaggerating, or at least all that much. [Confused]

Anyway, whatever. Now that I think about it, I suppose I haven't heard the Beatitudes preached on nearly enough. There used to be, almost, the impression in some evangelical circles that the Epistles were the theological 'meat' whilst the Gospels were more like the 'bread and butter' ... a shocking approach to Scripture, really, from so-called 'inerrantists' (what could be more weighty than the words of Jesus Himself?!) but a view that has been challenged by evangelical scholars and teachers (thankfully).

Inerrancy tends to reinforce this view IMNAAHO; if it's all dictated by God then it's all equally "weighty", but since the Epistles are generally more explicit and directly didactic than the gospels, they appear more "useful" for telling people what to believe.

I always said that if you ask a question, an evangelical will answer you from the Epistles, an Anglican from the Gospels, a Catholic from St Thomas Aquinas, an Orthodox from someone with a funny name, and a fundamentalist from the Old Testament.

--------------------
Might as well ask the bloody cat.

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lilBuddha
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# 14333

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quetzalcoatl posted:
quote:
On the other hand, the creationists in the US are actively trying to sabotage science education, and in a sense, science itself. I don't think this is something trivial really. It's an attack on human knowledge itself.
Exactly why it torques me.

deano, Jesus would bomb golf courses.

[ 13. March 2013, 15:50: Message edited by: lilBuddha ]

--------------------
I put on my rockin' shoes in the morning
Hallellou, hallellou

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Bran Stark
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quote:
Originally posted by Laurelin:
quote:
Originally posted by Gamaliel:
I know you're not a dispensationalist, Kaplan, but don't you think it's a sad state of affairs when the Brethren I knew used to preach that we didn't have to take any notice of the Sermon on the Mount because that applied to a different 'dispensation' ...

WHUT. [Mad] I grew up in the Brethren and never heard anything so monstrously silly. [Help] (There were other issues, to be sure ...)

quote:
Originally posted by Boogie:
I suggest you make that list, then visit each place on it. You'll change your mind in every case.

Very wise. [Cool]


I'm nailing my colours to the mast and I say, in no uncertain terms, that Jesus Christ will not bomb anybody, neither does He sanction us bombing other people.

I'm not a pacifist, btw. I believe that a nation-state has a right to defend itself against an aggressor. I'm thinking of Bomber Command. Of the 55,000 young men who perished on those missions ... and the bombs they dropped on German cities, so that the Nazi war machine could be dealt a serious blow. Were those young men evil? - no, of course not. Was my country right, to try to take out the Nazi war machine? - no question in my mind about that. Is it terrible to think of the German civilians who died in those raids? - yes, it is. (And I blame their government more than the Allied forces.)

But to claim this was a holy act? - you have to be kidding me. Jesus sanctioning bombing? No freaking way.

Gah. These issues are difficult, and not black-and-white.

I think it's very problematic from a Christian standpoint to claim that there can be actions which are "right" but which would not be sanctioned by Jesus.

--------------------
IN SOVIET ЯUSSIA, SIGNATUЯE ЯEAD YOU!

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