Saturday, February 13, 2010

One More Response to Edward Reiss

Edward Reiss has a post titled "Calvin's Framing of the Question about the Incarnation ... is Flawed."

Edward's basic argument is this:

1) An allegation that we can't properly ascribe things to a nature that we ordinarily ascribe to a person.

There's not much support for this allegation. Christians have been distinguishing between person and nature for centuries and attributing certain things to Christ's human nature as distinct from his divine nature. The distinction between the natures is an important part of orthodoxy.

Failure to understand this distinction yield odd results when applied to texts such as:

Luke 2:52 And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man.

For those of us who recognize that this discussion relates to Jesus with respect to his human nature, there is no problem. For those who blend the two natures, or who refuse to acknowledge the distinction (attributing everything that Jesus does to both natures), there proceeds an absurd result of the only wise God (Romans 16:27, 1 Timothy 1:17, and Jude 25) increasing in wisdom and stature.

2) An allegation that Jesus body (at least post-resurrection) was a deified glorified body.

This again appears to be an attempt to confuse and mix the natures. The proofs that Edward sets forth are miracles that Jesus did. Those miracles, however, are more easily explained as manifestations of Jesus' ability to do miracles, not a quasi-human body.

Specifically Edward points again (he had done so before) to Jesus' miracles of: disappearing, going through doors, walking on water, glowing etc.

However, note that Simon Peter also walked on water, Moses face also glowed and his body disappeared. Indeed the door of Lot's house effectively disappeared without becoming an inportation of God. The angels who assisted Peter walked him through locked doors to escape execution. And we could go on.

I'm not sure if Edward's etc. also included walking through fire:

Daniel 3:25 He answered and said, Lo, I see four men loose, walking in the midst of the fire, and they have no hurt; and the form of the fourth is like the Son of God.

Yes, miracles sometimes involve men doing things that they could not normally do. That testifies to the power of God. It does not suggest that Simon Peter or Moses was an incarnation of God, or that the door of Lot's house was God-in-the-door.

-TurretinFan

2 comments:

natamllc said...

I will go to the link shortly.

However, I cannot resist but point out an obvious "reality" of that old saw, "don't mess with fire, as it will burn you"!

Consider the rest of the story, here with regard to Daniel 3:::>

Dan 3:19 Then Nebuchadnezzar was filled with fury, and the expression of his face was changed against Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. He ordered the furnace heated seven times more than it was usually heated.
Dan 3:20 And he ordered some of the mighty men of his army to bind Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, and to cast them into the burning fiery furnace.
Dan 3:21 Then these men were bound in their cloaks, their tunics, their hats, and their other garments, and they were thrown into the burning fiery furnace.
Dan 3:22 Because the king's order was urgent and the furnace overheated, the flame of the fire killed those men who took up Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego.
Dan 3:23 And these three men, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego, fell bound into the burning fiery furnace.
Dan 3:24 Then King Nebuchadnezzar was astonished and rose up in haste. He declared to his counselors, "Did we not cast three men bound into the fire?" They answered and said to the king, "True, O king."

I would want to personally point out to the reader what happens to a live human being who gets to close to a really really really hot fire as the King's servants surely cannot attest too and for good reason, the fire was so hot they died by its heat just throwing those guys into the belly of the furnace!

What a miracle it was indeed for those Servants of God to come out of that furnace alive!

The miracles of God, at times, will make unbelievers realize that the only protection they have against the heat of the fiery furnace is the miracles of God. And the miracles of God sometimes makes unbelievers out of believers because the miracles of God are so naturally unbelievable! :)

I know for a fact that as I started reading the Old Testament I began to not believe what I was reading because I naturally could not get my carnal mind around what I was reading!

I believe a natural minded person cannot understand or believe in the Miracles of God even if natural science proves their occurrence. It takes a spiritual mind to believe the things so unbelievable and recorded in the Scriptures.

I don't recommend you read the Bible without the aid of the Holy Spirit and the spiritually minded.

Case in point would be the story we read about with Philip and the Ethiopian Eunuch in Acts 8. That there is some amazing stuff going on there!

natamllc said...

Here is what I posted over at Upstate and I suppose I am posting it here just to be coddled a bit? I see some mispelled words so I will edit them:::>

Posted at Upstate Lutheran, Ed Reiss's blog forum:
ED,

I just think you don't understand the Scriptures well enough.

Let me ask, are you three or four parts? Are you, "flesh/sarx", "body/soma", "soul/psuche" and "spirit/pnuema" or just a human being with a quickened spirit?

Let me ask, are you right now "conjoined" to Christ by the Hand of God? cf. Eph. 2:5 and Col. 2:13. And I point out that the Greek Word "suzoopoieo" is used in those two verse only and nowhere else in Scripture is it used or by any other writer of the New Testament. The Greek Word "zoopoieo" is used far more times in the New Testament.

I believe you just misunderstand Calvin's ability to see clearly Christ as four parts. And I am not sure the strain of this matter is a major issue when it comes to the body of his work and his contribution and its importance in the development of the Reformation that he most certainly was a major voice of and party too as Martin Luther and others, even to this day? What is the major relevance of your point as to the Gospel of the Kingdom being preached to every creature for a witness so that God can end this godless world devils full?

You noted:::>

"....A typical human being cannot heal sickness and cast our demons, but the person Jesus Christ can--asking if his nature is what is doing this is to attribute personal properties to nature, which is a category error. We read in Scripture "The Word became flesh"--the Word being the second person of the Trinity--"I and the Father are one"--the "I" referring to the person making the claim and not the divine nature--"For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily"--the fullness dwells in a person, Jesus Christ. Calvin’s framing of the question as "what is omnipresent" as opposed to "who is omnipresent" is the wrong question.".

I believe it is you I asked over at Triablogue to explain for me Hebrews 9:14 and pointedly asked if you were personally washed with His "blood"?

Let me ask you with regard to the apparent appearance of Christ, and ask inside that question also where He went after being recoginzed, if it was His "four" part being, flesh, body, soul and Spirit, that was seen in the fiery furnace at Daniel 3?

With that, can you explain the phenomenon that maybe upwards to six or more men "instantly" died throwing those three men into that fiery furnace and not one of those three men were smoked or burned one bit while they approached, were thrown into the air by the men who instantly died and falling into, standing around inside and then, somehow removed from that fiery furnace afterwards, all the while Christ was there, and there "only" while they were all inside the belly of the furnace? How is it physical persons, those men that carried the three men to the furnace die instantly by the heat of the furnace but they don't? How did God pull that miracle off, if you know?

I am not sure really where I am going with this, except I am poking at you poking at Calvin's philosophical commitment, which, I believe isn't meritorious for you to do. What's the great benefit of doing that? Are you attempting to convert some weak Calvinist believers to your form of Lutheranism by undermining this great man or the PCA to boot?

Thanks for your consideration in any event!