Christian Theological/Philosophical Book Club discussion

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The Forum - Debate Religion > Is Jesus really in the Old Testament?

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message 1: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Is Jesus really in the Old Testament?

Many people I chat with say NO. What are your thoughts?
(I, of course, have my answer all ready)


message 2: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments Joel writes "whoever calls on the name of the LORD will be saved". Peter repeats this in his preaching referring to Jesus.

Jesus is YHWH manifest as a human.


message 3: by Brent (new)

Brent McCulley (brentthewalrus) Jesus is not יהוה in human form, Joshua, this is Modalism, and a serious misunderstanding of God and the biblical witness, not to mention a heresy, which was nevertheless sufficiently endorsed in your book which we all read.

Contrary to your belief, Jesus was never talking to Himself, but as one of the subsistences of God, shared the one essence and ουσία with the Father and Son, which is why God is One.

Rod, yes I believe that Jesus is in the OT, not as Yahweh, but as the mysterious λόγος of God that had not fully been revealed and would not be revealed until the apex of time. Of the various theophanies (Θεοφανία) that you read through the OT, the Patristic testimony is almost universal at identifying them as the Logos of God, who had Himself not yet been manifested. Remember what David wrote? My LORD (YHWH) said to My Lord (Adonai).

So fascinating. We serve a mighty God indeed!


message 4: by Brent (new)

Brent McCulley (brentthewalrus) Also, sorry I have been a little distant! David the other moderator has been doing a kickass job, so everyone tell him so. I am three months away from finishing my M.Div and am finishing up my masters thesis so I have been extremely busy!

Excited to start to go through Origin with everyone! Russel was great fun.


message 5: by Joshua (last edited Apr 26, 2015 10:01PM) (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments Quite right Brent, Jesus is not YHWH in human form. The Holy Spirit is YHWH. As Peter said it was the Holy Spirit who spoke to the prophets.


message 6: by Joshua (last edited Apr 26, 2015 10:58PM) (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments By the way, I don't endorse modalism. Acknowledging that the Father is the source of all things doesn't carry the implication that Jesus, or the Holy Spirit, are not persons.

What makes God, God has nothing to do with "persons" it has to do with how He "fills all of heaven and earth" and "upholds all things by the power of His hand." It's why Jesus sits at the right hand of the "Power"


message 7: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle The Trinity is an amazing thing.


message 8: by Brent (new)

Brent McCulley (brentthewalrus) The Holy Spirit is not YHWH, Joshua, this is quite incorrect. The Holy Spirit testifies of the Son and the Father, so economically He is seen less in His works than the Father and the Son, but is not to be confused with the Father or the Son. We affirm the the works of the Trinity cannot be divided ontologically, but economically, each person has there specific function. Iam simply drawing a basic Analogiam per modum eminentiae. I am a person, in that I am self conscious, aware, etc., God is not simply just a Platonic abstract form of "power" or "filling the heavens" but is also a conscious being, as such, He is three persons.


message 9: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments Oh that's a lot of fancy words, I do ascribe to the persons of God as I wrote

Acknowledging that the Father is the source of all things doesn't carry the implication that Jesus, or the Holy Spirit, are not persons

Who then is YHWH to you? Creation begins with Elohiym and then in chapter 2 see YHWH Elohiym creating man and walking in the garden.


message 10: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Many people think Jesus was invented after Creation. I say creation was invented For Jesus and through Jesus. He appears numerous times throughout the Old Testament to prove this.


message 11: by Jake (new)

Jake Yaniak | 151 comments I think sometimes it can be confusing the way we talk about 'Jesus' being in the Old Testament. We say, 'Jesus created the world,' as if there was a Galilean with bones, muscles and a Latinized name summoning up water from nothing. 'He' certainly was at the beginning. He was the 'wisdom' by which God made the heavens (Psalm 136) and the wisdom by which he made the earth (Prov. 3). He was the Word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD without which bread will avail us nothing (Deuteronomy 8).

He was not a man named Jesus, however, or the incarnation was not an in-carnation.


message 12: by Brent (new)

Brent McCulley (brentthewalrus) Notice how I used the proper nouns Son and Logos λόγος and not Jesus, since that is merely The Son post incarnation, AS a Man.


message 13: by [deleted user] (new)

A λόγος is a word, something that in its Greek etymology is related to the verb legein, 'to collect.' Indeed, words do betoken collections, that is, groups of similar things, actions or concepts. They make things concrete and understandable at the expense of losing some of the uncollected detail. Yeshua is a λόγος in the sense that he is made concrete as a human form, and in that form is partially abstracted of his full assimilation into the One God - he is an expression of the One as a persona, or hypostasis, as the original Greek more adequately put it. The Word, the coalescing expression of God, was made flesh and dwelt among us.

This is the viewpoint of the philosophy of lectics, which as you can see has a name based on the same Greek root word. It is the official position, insofar as there is one, of the Tserkvem tse Vweialer, the main church denomination of the country that begins my science-fiction novel :P .

Some further thoughts about that are already posted in our forum at https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...

I'd love to see Brent's critique of Saraa's ideas in that passage. As her author, I'd be interested to know if she'd missed something important in her historical overview.

As an example, this paragraph about the idea of a later-begotten Jesus:

“Imagine the perplexity of poor Arius of Alexandria, excommunicated and exiled in the 320s because he insisted that Jesus, as a ‘begotten son’ of God, had a later starting point than God the Creator. But by putting Jesus out of God’s eternity and into the time stream as later-begotten, he reduced the participation of God in Jesus’ life, and through that, in ours. You could say that his downfall lay in implying that God had conserved power against humanity by not sending us (his) co-equal eternity in Jesus. Arius, in his nit-picking of words, diminished God’s compassion and thus, by extension, compassion in general."


message 14: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments I made comment, but it is perhaps pointless. Jesus is the word of the LORD (YHWH). Let me know if you figure out which person YHWH is.


message 15: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments ps Mark nice comment on logos


message 16: by [deleted user] (new)

The only Jesus I know of in the Hebrew Bible is the one who fought the battle of Jericho, and went on an Islamic State-type rampage through the Jordan region (just watch the IS videos to see how it was done back then too) because "God" told him to, and put men, women and innocent children to the sword ... while the sun and moon stood still ... and kept virgin girls as slaves.

But I've yet to meet a single Jewish person or Hebrew scholar who accepts the notion that a sired-by-Yahweh, Christian-style Jesus/Joshua is written of anywhere in their scriptures ... and it's their own culture - so you would expect them to know it quite well.


message 17: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Actually Stewart, I expect them to miss the obvious and continue rebelling and sinning - like the Old Testament continually shows. Golden Calf anyone?


message 18: by [deleted user] (last edited Apr 30, 2015 10:56AM) (new)

Jewish people who convert to Christianity tend to reinterpret the references in the OT and join the mainstream Christian spectrum of understandings. Re-tuning the epistemology is a good tonic, sometimes.

The Joshua of the OT is a separate topic. We don't generally translate his name into Greek. The NT Joshua was an Aramaic speaker first, apparently, so either the Greek or Hebrew forms of his name are translations.

If ISIS took up the stance of the Joshua of the NT, we would have a middle east with good cause for hope.


message 19: by [deleted user] (new)

Rod wrote: "Actually Stewart, I expect them to miss the obvious and continue rebelling and sinning - like the Old Testament continually shows. Golden Calf anyone?"

"Obvious" ...?

To find the Jewish god-man Jesus in the Hebrew writings, you have to really, really want him to be there and if you try very hard, you can maybe find something that looks as though it could perhaps be seen as referencing the local deity breeding with one of the local virgins.

If it was "obvious" you wouldn't have posted this topic.


message 20: by [deleted user] (new)

Mark wrote: "Jewish people who convert to Christianity tend to reinterpret the references in the OT and join the mainstream Christian spectrum of understandings. Re-tuning the epistemology is a good tonic, some..."

"Interpret" is the important word here.

When you have faith, things can mean just whatever you choose them to mean.

If the "God" of the supposedly monotheistic Hebrew writings was really the Yahweh/Jesus/Holy Ghost combo deal, you would expect "God" to have inspired the possibly fictional Moses and other "prophets" to make clear mention of it, and not leave it up to believers of numerous persuasions to interpret the mythology and propaganda to make it fit their beliefs.


message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

Worth considering carefully ...

https://www.facebook.com/theskepticsg...


message 22: by [deleted user] (new)

Maybe Jesus was in the OT after all ...!

Here's a picture of him to prove it:

https://richarddawkins.net/2015/04/di...


message 23: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Stewart comment:
"If it was "obvious" you wouldn't have posted this topic."

Stewie at no time do I think anything Biblical is obvious to you. But i'm more interested in where others in this group are headed - an atheist has no horse in this race. :cp

But it always fascinates me when people who claim to be Christians do not see what is right before them. Usually this is a clue that they are a NEW believer... or on their way out.


message 24: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle Stewie quote:
" you would expect "God" to have inspired the possibly fictional Moses and other "prophets" to make clear mention of it"

You really haven't spent much time with the Bible now have you?
God does say a few interesting things about When His word will NOT be understood. Even Jesus mentions this issue. I'm sorry Stewart that you are on the outside looking in. But any hope for your salvation is quickly slipping away.

But, back to Jesus in the Old Testament. Joshua 5:
13When Joshua was by Jericho, he lifted up his eyes and looked, and behold, a man was standing before him with his drawn sword in his hand. And Joshua went to him and said to him, “Are you for us, or for our adversaries?” 14And he said, “No; but I am the commander of the army of the LORD. Now I have come.” And Joshua fell on his face to the earth and worshiped and said to him, “What does my lord say to his servant?” 15And the commander of the LORD’s army said to Joshua, “Take off your sandals from your feet, for the place where you are standing is holy.” And Joshua did so.


message 25: by [deleted user] (last edited Apr 30, 2015 07:53PM) (new)

One advantage we have as Christians is that the paraclete ('Clete' to his friends) may occasionally intercede in these thinking processes. I knew right away that Stu would consign me to his institute for the religiophrenic when HS had a chat with me about this thread as I wandered through an art gallery.

"Of course Jesus is in the Torah and the Prophets here and there, apart from the obvious," he said - not that it was said in so many English words, you understand. "Who do you think Job is? That novelette there is clearly an allegory, but what's it an allegory of? Yes, you can take it at face value, a parable of faith and concession to God's ineffable overview, but all these passages have multiple levels. When you level up to level 7 in Job, he's clearly Jesus in those last few days - and vice-versa. Jesus, he's had everything: he's had it even better than Job - the crowds adored him, he could heal people with his shirt and his glance and his word. Now, he's like a man diseased and rendered stupid, this isn't just stiff upper lip - favour has fallen away from him like a lead cloak and Satan is having his last wager with God over him. Eloi! Eloi! Lamma sabacthani!??! Boils, whip marks, dead sons, lost disciples - it's the story of being with God and losing him according to God's will - through no conceivable fault of your own, as it happens, in this one case. Who else ever underwent a story like that?

"'Is it by your order that the eagle flies high and makes its nest on the heights?" Do you find God unfair in these stories? 'Can you give strength to a horse or dress its neck with a flowing mane?' Huh, huh? Can ya, Mr/Ms. Big Shot? In that case, go ahead and brand Job's interim lot wrong, and call the crucifixion wrong. Yet these 'victims' of divine abandonment held their faith, and let God's will be done. 'Not my will but thine,' as my sometimes fallible buddy King James' translators once aptly put it in your North Sea tongue.

And the two who yielded to that Will prospered overwhelmingly in the end, one in a parable of fiction, the other in eternity."

The above may contain trace elements of nuts, that is, storytelling - this is a forum for authors, after all. But I think there's something in Northrop Frye's contention (in The Great Code: The Bible and Literature ) that the Bible hangs together as a series of repeated archetypes. The travails of Job are a Type of the travails of Jesus. So there he is - the Word bumping into and out of the time stream.

Whoever has ears to hear, let him hear.

There is no chemical evidence.


message 26: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 1864 comments Unless we disbelieve the virgin birth story, then Jesus is not physically "in" the Old Testament. However, as has been noted by many, the glory and magnitude of his coming out party was certainly given plenty of advance notice!


message 27: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments "Draw near to me, hear this:
from the beginning I have not spoken in secret,
from the time it came to be I have been there."
And now the the Lord God has sent me, and His Spirit.

Isaiah 48:16


message 28: by Joshua (new)

Joshua Woodward | 556 comments Ok so here "Lord God" is Adonai Elohiym, not YHWH. The context of this passage is YHWH speaking to Israel. "me" is YHWH

As Paul said there is one God, the Father, and one Lord, Jesus Christ

I recall my concession. Jesus Christ is in fact YHWH manifest, which is why He is called the Lord Jesus Christ.


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