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Thread: For Sincere Inquisitors ONLY: MAD Explained

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ktoyou View Post
    I would think not, as to my understanding, I would assume Mid-Acts is independent of Open Theism, or the Settled view.
    That's true, Kat. Whether we believe that God foreknew & planned the change in Acts 9 or not, it doesn't change the fact that a change was made.
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    They can't compete with a real writer and grammar scholar
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    You're too literal to get it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    The New Covenant preceded the Old Covenant.

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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenman View Post
    Those of us who hold to this approach believe that we must read and study the Bible FORWARD, rather than BACKWARD.
    do you agree that Paul's epistles were written before all of the gospels?
    a voice crying in the wilderness :chrysost:

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    A few brief comments from me; I only have a couple of minutes, so no time for anything substantive.
    Quote Originally Posted by assuranceagent View Post
    Hey Randy...glad you decided to do this thread! I've been bouncing little tidbits off of you and STP for a while now but it'll be good to focus on this for a while...

    The first question that springs to mind...
    I see STP addressed your question, AA. I thought his post was great. I'll come back later to add a couple of thoughts (that are much less valuable than STP's, by the way. )


    Quote Originally Posted by This Charming Manc View Post
    A fair request, but I did try to keep my enquirey polite and cultured rather than confronational and arguementative.

    The difficulty is that ive never seen the particulat point I picked up on articlated anywhere else, so its hard to respond anywhere else.

    Want to create another thread to look at that particlar issue?
    TCM,
    You did make your post in a polite way; thank you. However, I know for a fact, from reading your posts on other threads, that you are not sincerely interested in learning and stand strong against Dispensationalism. So I and others will honestly be happy to address your questions...just not here. This thread is not for you.


    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond_Dantes View Post
    Thanks for starting this thread I've been curious about this view since I saw it here.

    So right now, I mean at this very time, are there two gospels? One for gentiles and one for Jews?
    Hi, Edmond.
    Thanks for asking. Today, there is only one gospel. All who believe that one gospel are baptized into the one Body of Christ by the one Spirit. Today, there is no distinction between Jew or Gentile.


    Quote Originally Posted by SaulToPaul View Post
    That's true, Kat. Whether we believe that God foreknew & planned the change in Acts 9 or not, it doesn't change the fact that a change was made.
    Amen. Thanks for making that note, STP.


    Quote Originally Posted by chrysostom View Post
    do you agree that Paul's epistles were written before all of the gospels?
    chrys,
    I'm willing to address your questions, but not here. Like TCM and cistercian, you are overtly against this position that I hold. So you are not welcome here. Ask on another thread, or start another thread, and I or others will be happy to address them.
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


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    Thumbs up You score again!!!

    Quote Originally Posted by SaulToPaul View Post
    Howdy, bro!
    If Randy doesn't mind, I'll take a stab at this.

    Here's the initial promise to Abraham:

    Genesis 12
    1: Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:
    2: And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:
    3: And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed.

    Immediately, we can see that there are two groups involved. A "great nation" and "the families (or nations) of the earth".

    Fast forward a little.

    Genesis 15
    4: And, behold, the word of the LORD came unto him, saying, This shall not be thine heir; but he that shall come forth out of thine own bowels shall be thine heir.
    5: And he brought him forth abroad, and said, Look now toward heaven, and tell the stars, if thou be able to number them: and he said unto him, So shall thy seed be.
    6: And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness.

    So, Abraham, a heathen, yet uncircumcised, was counted as righteous by faith alone. No action was required in believing God's promise.

    Moving ahead, God changes his name from Abram to Abraham and...

    Genesis 17
    10: This is my covenant, which ye shall keep, between me and you and thy seed after thee; Every man child among you shall be circumcised.
    11: And ye shall circumcise the flesh of your foreskin; and it shall be a token of the covenant betwixt me and you.
    12: And he that is eight days old shall be circumcised among you, every man child in your generations, he that is born in the house, or bought with money of any stranger, which is not of thy seed.

    14: And the uncircumcised man child whose flesh of his foreskin is not circumcised, that soul shall be cut off from his people; he hath broken my covenant.

    The covenant of circumcision is given to Abraham, and an action IS required to remain in this covenant.

    So, within the umbrella of the Abrahamic covenant, Gen 12:1-3, God is now beginning to set apart the "great nation" within that covenant.

    From Gen 17 forward, it's all about the circumcision. It's all about getting that "great nation" through whom the nations of the earth would be blessed.

    Well, the Messiah comes to the circumcision. The majority reject him, he's crucified, buried, risen, and ascended. Israel continues to reject the ministry of the Holy Spirit in early Acts, Israel is fallen.

    But, God raises up another apostle with a message that was hidden in the scriptures concerning Gentiles, the uncircumcision.

    Gal 3
    5: He therefore that ministereth to you the Spirit, and worketh miracles among you, doeth he it by the works of the law, or by the hearing of faith?
    6: Even as Abraham believed God, and it was accounted to him for righteousness.
    7: Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham.
    8: And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the heathen through faith, preached before the gospel unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed.
    9: So then they which be of faith are blessed with faithful Abraham.

    So, instead of blessing the nations of the world through the rise of that "great nation", they are blessed through the fall of that "great nation"...and, he can do it by their faith alone.

    During Acts, you have two groups. Both are the children of Abraham, and both fall under the umbrella of the Abrahamic covenant. One group, a nation, are children of Abraham (in circumcision). The other group, a Body, are children of Abraham (in uncircumcision). The covenant of circumcision requires action, works. No action is required of the uncircumcision.

    You can follow these two groups through the book of Acts. You can see the circumcision being diminished, you can see the uncircumcision growing.

    The two groups are clearly seen here,

    Gal 2
    7: But contrariwise, when they saw that the gospel of the uncircumcision was committed unto me, as the gospel of the circumcision was unto Peter;
    8: (For he that wrought effectually in Peter to the apostleship of the circumcision, the same was mighty in me toward the Gentiles: )
    9: And when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that was given unto me, they gave to me and Barnabas the right hands of fellowship; that we should go unto the heathen, and they unto the circumcision.

    In Galatians, Paul contrasts the two covenants which spawn these two groups. He contrasts the Abrahamic covenant with the Mosaic (the circumcision). The promise is unto both, the Jerusalem above which is free, is the mother of them all.

    Hope this helps...
    Dear StoP, I'm so glad that you brought up the Abrahamic Covenant and referenced it's ramifications so cogently. I fell asleep last night thinking about the Abrahamic Covenant and it's meaning to "The Faithful" even today. It is necessary, as Randy stated, to get to the fundamental truthes of our story. Thanks for the "many eye-openers" which you have provided for me! peace, bybee

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    Hi, AMR.

    I don't have the time right now to read through everything in that link you posted. So I can't say if I agree with the details or not. But after skimming it, I'd say that I generally agree with it and that it at least generally represents the MidActs position. It might thoroughly represent the position, but I just can't say for sure without digging into it.

    If you have any specific questions about something that the author wrote, I'll be happy to give you my thoughts on them.

    Thanks,
    Randy
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


    "You should never wave to someone you don't know. What if he doesn't have a hand? Then he'll just think you're being cocky!" ~Mitch Hedberg

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    Thanks for the reply CM, Next..

    Is the content found in the New Testament prior to MAD applicable to Christians from MAD onward? None, all of it, some of it? If some of it how do you discern?

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    Quote Originally Posted by bybee View Post
    Dear StoP, I'm so glad that you brought up the Abrahamic Covenant and referenced it's ramifications so cogently. I fell asleep last night thinking about the Abrahamic Covenant and it's meaning to "The Faithful" even today. It is necessary, as Randy stated, to get to the fundamental truthes of our story. Thanks for the "many eye-openers" which you have provided for me! peace, bybee
    STP really raised a great point, didn't he bybee? It's neat that you already recognized the need to understand that. We have to have an understanding of the Abrahamic covenants (land and circumcision) in order to understand everything that happens after that. Those who disregard the two covenants are missing the crucial start to the story.
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


    "You should never wave to someone you don't know. What if he doesn't have a hand? Then he'll just think you're being cocky!" ~Mitch Hedberg

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond_Dantes View Post
    Thanks for the reply CM, Next..

    Is the content found in the New Testament prior to MAD applicable to Christians from MAD onward? None, all of it, some of it? If some of it how do you discern?
    We must discern all of the Bible the same way. If it's a letter, then we must understand who the audience is and the commission under which the author wrote. For some books, the author is somewhat irrelevant. For instance, I Chronicles is simply a chronicling of history, as it relates to what would become the nation of Israel, from the first man through the time of the kings and captivity. So the authorship isn't relevant. And the timing of the writing isn't relevant. The point of the book remains the same. We discern what it's about and who/what it pertains to and we accept that.

    The four gospel accounts are similar. They chronicle the life of Jesus and His ministry on earth. So we're to read them and understand from the content what's going on, who the players are, and in what context the players are operating. And we can see that the storyline fits within the context of the Old Covenant for Israel. So in light of that, we apply them in the same way we might apply something from Leviticus or Malachi. We strive to understand it as written and as intended. ONLY after doing that, can we make application where appropriate. When we do that, then we can see the specific intent of things like the so-called "Be Attitudes" or the Sermon on the Mount and understand that the message is specifically for Israel. But is meekness something that is valued by God under any dispensation? Of course! So I'm happy to take that away from Matthew 5, but I'm not going to force the sermon to be directed to the Body when it is, in fact, directed at God's nation who was being commanded to repent in preparation for their coming kingdom.

    There are some things from which I CAN'T make straightforward application, though. I can't apply Acts 2:38 to me in any way. Today, we are not required to repent and be baptized for the remission of sins and to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. So I'm going to recognize it's for the kingdom program, not garble it up to make it something it's not, and leave it at that.

    Long answer to your question. Did I adequately address your question?
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


    "You should never wave to someone you don't know. What if he doesn't have a hand? Then he'll just think you're being cocky!" ~Mitch Hedberg

    __.._

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    Quote Originally Posted by assuranceagent View Post
    So according to MAD, prior to and following this, sort of "parenthetical" dispensation of the gospel of uncircumcision, were works once a necessary ingredient for the salvation of men and will they be again?
    If I could, let me take a stab at this. Jesus describes the tribulation in Matthew 24 and in it describes the gospel of the kindgdom:

    Mat 24:13But he who endures to the end shall be saved. 14And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come.

    Again, describing the Kingdom in Mat. 25, Jesus says the following:

    Mat. 25:26“But his lord answered and said to him, ‘You wicked and lazy servant, you knew that I reap where I have not sown, and gather where I have not scattered seed. 27So you ought to have deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I would have received back my own with interest. 28So take the talent from him, and give it to him who has ten talents.
    29‘For to everyone who has, more will be given, and he will have abundance; but from him who does not have, even what he has will be taken away. 30And cast the unprofitable servant into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’

    This is consistent with what James wrote to those of the circumcision who were saved before the dispensation of the grace of God:

    James 2:14What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? 15If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit? 17Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.

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    CM,

    I think I'm with ya so far.

    Now if you would'nt mind going a little further, can you show me at what point it is explicitly or implicitly stated that we need no longer repent?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond_Dantes View Post
    CM,

    I think I'm with ya so far.

    Now if you would'nt mind going a little further, can you show me at what point it is explicitly or implicitly stated that we need no longer repent?
    I Cor. 15:1-4 states the gospel by which one is saved, and belief is what is mentioned...not repentance. Now, that doesn't necessarily PRECLUDE repentance. The topic of repentance is something that is best understood if the foundation is understood. So if it's okay, I'll turn the tables and ask a couple of questions that are a little more foundational.

    Do you believe that Matt-John represent a time period when Israel is under the Old Covenant? And do you believe that Jesus' teachings in those accounts were specifically for Israel under the Old Covenant, awaiting the coming kingdom?

    Thanks for your respectful participation, Ed.

    Randy
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


    "You should never wave to someone you don't know. What if he doesn't have a hand? Then he'll just think you're being cocky!" ~Mitch Hedberg

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    Quote Originally Posted by -FoC- View Post
    I think thats a given, isnt it
    You would think.

    But some people oppose common sense with every fiber of their being.

    Quote Originally Posted by assuranceagent View Post
    Hey Randy...glad you decided to do this thread! I've been bouncing little tidbits off of you and STP for a while now but it'll be good to focus on this for a while...

    The first question that springs to mind:

    In talking to STP recently, he helped me understand the distinction between the gospel of the Kingdom and the gospel of uncircumcision. (And I think it's clear that they are two different gospels...on that much I'm right there with you guys...)

    It seems to me, though, that Paul indicates that Abraham, in particular and among others, was accounted righteous on the basis of his faith, just as we are. Now clearly his faith took different form than ours must since he was looking forward to Messiah while we get to look both ways. The question, though, has to do with the requirement for salvation during what I recognize as the dispensation of the Promise, or the time of the Abrahamic covenant.

    It seems that you guys see the gospel of the Kingdom as a kind of development on the Abrahamic covenant, being the promise of earthly reward in exchange (at least in part) for obedience. Yet Paul seems to make a point of the fact that it was Abraham's faith that saved him, and not his works.

    I'll leave James out for now since, if I understand correctly, in writing to the twelve tribes, he is preaching the gospel of the Kingdom...

    So according to MAD, prior to and following this, sort of "parenthetical" dispensation of the gospel of uncircumcision, were works once a necessary ingredient for the salvation of men and will they be again?

    Thanks Randy!
    I just want to put forth a simple answer to this question, for those who may still have trouble understanding the answers already given: Abraham's faith was accounted to him for righteousness before there were any commands he had to follow.

    We can see that after he was given his first command, circumcision, that God demanded this of him in the story of his son, when God sought to kill Abraham for not circumcising the child.

    Abraham was breaking the covenant in that, and it would have come to an end if things hadn't changed, and God had killed Abraham.


    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    Is MAD necessarily an Open Theist only understanding? It seems to me that it nearly must be and the question probably has you holding your sides and desperately refraining from spitting all over your keyboard/monitor. Keep in mind my theological training is only surpassed by my humility...

    Glad you finally decided to do this.

    Also keep in mind that I have a tiger ally if this turns ugly.
    There were two camps of MAD when I joined TOL. One camp was OV, the other Calvinist. So it's clearly not specific to the OV.

    However, if you are OV, it's easier to believe that the plan changed.

    Quote Originally Posted by Edmond_Dantes View Post
    Thanks for starting this thread I've been curious about this view since I saw it here.

    So right now, I mean at this very time, are there two gospels? One for gentiles and one for Jews?
    No. There is currently only one gospel. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile in the Body of Christ. And the previous dispensation is at an end, or at least on hold.
    Last edited by Lighthouse; June 18th, 2009 at 09:22 AM. Reason: I was mistaken on this story.


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    Quote Originally Posted by bybee View Post
    I fell asleep last night thinking about the Abrahamic Covenant and it's meaning to "The Faithful" even today.
    Dear bybee, I don't want to rabbit trail the thread, we can talk about this in a PM. But, you and I are not children of Abraham. There was another mystery revealed after Acts 28 that concerns us
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    They can't compete with a real writer and grammar scholar
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    You're too literal to get it.
    Quote Originally Posted by Interplanner View Post
    The New Covenant preceded the Old Covenant.

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    STP,
    It's up to you, but it's fine by me if you and bybee want to discuss that here.

    Randy
    Funny how threads morph.


    For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." ~ Paul


    "You should never wave to someone you don't know. What if he doesn't have a hand? Then he'll just think you're being cocky!" ~Mitch Hedberg

    __.._

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    Quote Originally Posted by SaulToPaul View Post
    Dear bybee, I don't want to rabbit trail the thread, we can talk about this in a PM. But, you and I are not children of Abraham. There was another mystery revealed after Acts 28 that concerns us
    Thats not a Mid Acts position then! Thats an Acts 28 position.

    Zeke.

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