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On the God of the Christians > A God Who Asks Nothing Of Us

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message 1: by John (new)

John Seymour | 1824 comments Mod
Do you agree that God asks nothing of us?


Fonch | 1147 comments With the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ it is all done, at least this is the thing that i think to understand while i am reading it.


Manuel Alfonseca | 1415 comments Mod
What Brague means is the following: the God of the Old Testament, and the God of Islam give commandments, as a God who orders us around. The God of the Christians, on the other hand, rather than giving orders, expects us to respond to the Incarnation and death of Jesus Christ by loving Him.

This nuance is similar to the one in the previous chapter (A God who has said everything). I find these two chapters and the last one the most original in the book.


Fonch | 1147 comments Manuel wrote: "What Brague means is the following: the God of the Old Testament, and the God of Islam give commandments, as a God who orders us around. The God of the Christians, on the other hand, rather than gi..."

I have the impression meanwhile i was reading the part of the muslim, that they have the impression that God created the world and afterwards he did not participate in the actions of the world, and he let that the men took their own decissions. I have the impression that i read to the spanish reviewer speaking about the Darren Aronofsky`s movie Noah, that before the universal floodthat there are a moment where God do not speak to the mankind. About the Islam Juan Manuel de Prada the spanish catholic writer dedicated a TV. programme when he was in Intereconomia and he hosted Tears in the rain spoke about the muslim`s view of God. He had the same opinion as Remi Brague the the view of God was different to the christians and muslim. Brague said that in the names to God in the muslim religion did not appear Father.


Mariangel | 518 comments I liked the point about that in Genesis, God only named 5 things while he created them, let man to give the rest of names, and listened while he did. Whereas the God of the Muslims had all the names ready and just gave them to man.


Manuel Alfonseca | 1415 comments Mod
Mariangel wrote: "I liked the point about that in Genesis, God only named 5 things while he created them, let man to give the rest of names, and listened while he did. Whereas the God of the Muslims had all the name..."

In this chapter I also liked the point where Brague says that the statues of false gods are always shown demanding, begging, and what they are begging is sacrifice, to be given life (to be made sacred) by man.

On the other hand, the real God does not demand or beg, He just expects us to act as we should.

Let me explain it in a parabole: Two Islamic suicidal terrorists die in a terrorist attempt and meet God at the other side of death. God tells them: "What you did is not what I expected you'd do." One of the terrorists says: "Lord, I was mistaken. Pardon me." And so, he is in heaven. The other says: "Lord, you deceived me. I'll never pardon you." And so, he is in hell.


message 7: by Jill (new)

Jill A. | 654 comments His point seems to be that right and wrong are known to us internally so God doesn't need to tell us what to do. But there is such wide variation in what individuals and societies accept as right and judge as wrong! Look at marriage, for example--one spouse or many, different genders or not, lifetime commitment or casual coupling... The one who created us in a certain way does us a favor if he lets us know how He designed us to function best!


Mariangel | 518 comments I agree with Jill that we need some rules. The 'one spouse for life' isn't obvious and many cultures didn't follow it (even David and Solomon didn't).

Manuel wrote: "What Brague means is the following: the God of the Old Testament, and the God of Islam give commandments, as a God who orders us around. The God of the Christians, on the other hand, rather than giving orders, expects us to respond to the Incarnation and death of Jesus Christ by loving Him. "

But the commandments are still given to us, since we inherited the Old Testament and Jesus himself said he was not going to change them.

I understand the point of the chapter, but there are Christians nowadays who would (and in fact do) take it as meaning that the commandments are no longer binding.


Fonch | 1147 comments Mariangel wrote: "I agree with Jill that we need some rules. The 'one spouse for life' isn't obvious and many cultures didn't follow it (even David and Solomon didn't).

Manuel wrote: "What Brague means is the foll..."


I suppose that in the case f the kings the Jews imitate the rest of the people, around them.
Jesus was more critic with the repudation that it was tolerated badly with Moses.


message 10: by John (new)

John Seymour | 1824 comments Mod
"So be perfect, just as your heavenly Father is perfect." Matt 5: 48.

"You shall love the Lord, your God, with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the greatest commandment. The second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The whole law and the prophets depend on these two commandments." Matt 23: 37-40

The only way I can understand Brague is to understand that salvation is a free gift from God, for which he asks nothing (I think this is what Fonch is saying), but after which he expects rather a lot (as Jill noted and as is demonstrated in the quotes I note above).

But Brague, in his language, seems to go further, too far.

I agree with Manuel that the last three chapters are the most original, but that brings to mind the reviewer who noted that a work was good and original, but unfortunately the parts that were good were not original and the parts that were original were not good. I don't mean to imply that this describes Brague's book. But my take on the last three chapters is that Brague had some insights, but grew enamored of his insights and pushed them beyond the point that they were supportable. Perhaps I don't understand and perhaps it will take another reading.

I don't want to be too critical. His explication of "And the Word was made flesh"; "[Christ] himself is the message. He is everything that God says and has to say" is really interesting and worthy of hours of meditation. But then he concludes that therefore since God has said everything there is to say he has been silent, makes me wonder, what about Catherine of Sienna, what about Faustina and what about all the other saints who have heard God's voice speaking to them? If God is silent, categorically silent, how are we to understand Fatima, Lourdes, Guadalupe, and other Marian apparitions?


Manuel Alfonseca | 1415 comments Mod
John wrote: "I agree with Manuel that the last three chapters are the most original, but that brings to mind the reviewer..."

At least this book has given us a lot of food for thought, and has been the excuse for a good discussion :-)


message 12: by John (new)

John Seymour | 1824 comments Mod
Manuel wrote: "John wrote: "I agree with Manuel that the last three chapters are the most original, but that brings to mind the reviewer..."

At least this book has given us a lot of food for thought, and has bee..."


I completely agree with that. :-))


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