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Thread: For Sincere Inquisitors ONLY: MAD Explained

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lighthouse View Post
    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.
    That was more to my point. It seems rather irreconcilable else, unless one posits that God intended the alteration...or that God neither intended nor will intend but at all points intends, to muddle things a bit...sorry about that. I'm going to go back to reading silently.
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    This is such a good post it hurts! Outstanding, my friend.

    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...
    What I love about a good understanding of Acts is how simple things become to explain. One can take almost any story or image from the bible and draw an uncontrived analogy to the truth from it. Circumcision, the law, fathers and sons, sacrifice and so many others.
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    Nice threads don't seem to move too fast.


    HOMOS!!!!!!
    Last edited by chickenman; June 19th, 2009 at 10:53 AM.
    Funny how threads morph.


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    Quote Originally Posted by Zeke View Post
    Thats not a Mid Acts position then! Thats an Acts 28 position.

    Zeke.
    Howdy brother Zeke

    We aren't going to agree on this, and that's ok. But, I am thankful that you do see the dispensational significance of Acts 28! I'll just show you quickly my understanding as an Acts 9, and how Acts 28 fits into it.

    Eph 1
    12: That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
    13: In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,

    Paul includes himself and the Ephesians of Acts 18-19 in the "we".
    The "ye" would be the Ephesians Paul had not met who were aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, strangers from the covenants of promise.

    Eph 3
    4: Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)
    5: Which in other ages was not made known unto the sons of men, as it is now revealed unto his holy apostles and prophets by the Spirit;
    6: That the Gentiles should be fellowheirs, and of the same body, and partakers of his promise in Christ by the gospel:

    The "we" and "ye" were joined in the same Body.
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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenman View Post
    Nice threads don't seem to move to fast.


    HOMOS!!!!!!
    Nice threads? Nice threads - Clothes? or Forum threads?

    Maybe I should post, and speed it up?

    C/M, you're a good man, I appreciate your patience with others, you have a good thread going here, so I just stopped by to give you 's up.

    Keep up the good work.

    Psalmist


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    .....To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Psalmist View Post
    Nice threads? Nice threads - Clothes? or Forum threads?

    Maybe I should post, and speed it up?

    C/M, you're a good man, I appreciate your patience with others, you have a good thread going here, so I just stopped by to give you 's up.

    Keep up the good work.

    Psalmist
    Now back to the topic.


    .....O LORD my God, in You I put my trust. Psalm 7:1
    .....To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
    Psalm 25:1

    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~ Leo Buscaglia

    The best portion of a personís life -- are the little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love. ~ William Wordsworth

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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenman View Post
    Nice threads don't seem to move to fast.


    HOMOS!!!!!!
    Isn't that baiting the field?

    I was rather hoping that you would continue from the essential premise of MAD to its distinction from more widely accepted orthodoxy. That is, I think it would be beneficial to answer the old "why does this matter?" by illustrating the errors inherent in alternate understanding of scripture.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    Isn't that baiting the field?

    I was rather hoping that you would continue from the essential premise of MAD to its distinction from more widely accepted orthodoxy. That is, I think it would be beneficial to answer the old "why does this matter?" by illustrating the errors inherent in alternate understanding of scripture.
    Great question, "Why does this matter?" - That is thinking way a head of me.

    Town Heretic


    .....O LORD my God, in You I put my trust. Psalm 7:1
    .....To You, O LORD, I lift up my soul.
    Psalm 25:1

    Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around. ~ Leo Buscaglia

    The best portion of a personís life -- are the little, nameless, unremembered acts of kindness and love. ~ William Wordsworth

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    Quote Originally Posted by chickenman View Post
    Nice threads don't seem to move to fast.


    HOMOS!!!!!!
    WHERE!!??

    Oh...I get it.

    Sorry, man. I've been in meetings for the better part of the last week as we bring on our new acquisition so my time has been on short supply...

    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    That was more to my point. It seems rather irreconcilable else, unless one posits that God intended the alteration...
    Were I to adopt the position, I'd hold to just that idea. And I imagine that, were you to ask STP (a settled theist MADman) his opinion on the issue, he'd likely tell you that the whole change of direction was always a part of God's overarching purpose and plan, in keeping with OT prophecy later quoted by Paul in Romans 9, among other places.

    Of course, I'm not STP, or (at least at this point) a MADman, but I see no trouble with the reconciliation of that line of reasoning.

    Quote Originally Posted by Stripe View Post
    This is such a good post it hurts! Outstanding, my friend.
    I agree. Unfortunately I seem to think as much of many of your posts, so I can't rep you again right now. But I always appreciate your willingness to guide me along on MAD matters, as you well know.




    Next question: Regarding the gospel of uncircumcision and that of the Kingdom -- Is it possible to adhere to both? To be saved by the gospel of uncircumcision but to look forward to the earthly rewards of the gospel of the Kingdom as well? For the Jew only? Or not at all?

    And one more: I'm still trying to get my head around the salvation by faith thing, since I want to separate that from the gospel of the Kingdom. Has the gospel of uncircumcision essentially always been in effect (as evidenced in the salvation of those like Rahab, who were gentiles) but only now, in this dispensation, has it come to the fore? Or was it something altogether new that began with Paul's commission?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    "why does this matter?"
    1. We will be held accountable at the judgment seat of Christ for what we believe & teach. To be approved, we must study to show ourselves approved.

    2. The majority of the church world attempts to worship God in the flesh, through rituals and ordinances. There are no ordinances or rituals for the Body of Christ. If we really want to worship God we must do it in spirit and in truth. How can we really worship God?

    "The words I speak unto you, they are spirit and life"-Jesus Christ
    "Thy word is truth" - the Psalmist

    We worship today by studying & proclaiming the word of God!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    Isn't that baiting the field?

    I was rather hoping that you would continue from the essential premise of MAD to its distinction from more widely accepted orthodoxy. That is, I think it would be beneficial to answer the old "why does this matter?" by illustrating the errors inherent in alternate understanding of scripture.
    I can tell you the biggest aspect of the MAD perspective that seems attractive to me, and the reason I've begun to focus more heavily on it:

    Understanding Paul's commission as distinct from those who wrote before and after him has the necessary effect of offering almost instant apology for seemingly contradictory passages of scripture, particularly pertaining to the whole faith vs. works dialogue (hence my focus on that issue).

    I bear what I believe to be more than reasonable explanations for many of those seeming contradictions, but many of them pose particularly hairy problems that I've always felt caused a stretch in justifying. For instance, Hebrews 6:4-6 has always struck me as a particularly difficult passage for the OSAS club (of which I am a member in good standing) and one for which I've never really heard what I feel to be an airtight apology. You could argue that he who fell, never possessed salvation to begin with, but the language used in the passage is strong, to say the least. I've never felt the argument was stood strong on it's own.

    If I understand it correctly, MAD resolves this issue by positing that Hebrews is not written to the body, but to the Israelites, and is therefore pertaining to the gospel of the Kingdom.

    This is just one among several examples (and one on which I may be waaaayyyy off base) of the potential problems that a position such as this would or could resolve.

    I'd be interested to have one of our resident experts weigh in on those thoughts as well...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Town Heretic View Post
    Isn't that baiting the field?

    I was rather hoping that you would continue from the essential premise of MAD to its distinction from more widely accepted orthodoxy. That is, I think it would be beneficial to answer the old "why does this matter?" by illustrating the errors inherent in alternate understanding of scripture.
    Really great question, TH!

    Here's my take...

    Traditional Christianity says that the NT is doctrine for the Body of Christ, while the OT is doctrine for Israel. Of course, there are variations of this, but that's it in a nutshell. From my one-on-one and class-teaching experiences, this is the overwhelming belief. And also from my experiences, it is abundantly clear that the masses who believe this have not tested the idea. What if it's wrong?

    Well, subconsciously assuming it's right causes a person (who believes the Bible to be inspired) to make everything east of Malachi mean the same thing. The result of attempting to do so: Denominations. Some accept James' epistle at face value and have a works-based denomination. Some accept Paul at face value and have a non-works-based, grace denomination, but say James means something other than what it appears on the surface. Some take Jesus at face value when He says one MUST forgive his brother in order for the Father to forgive him, while others (my former church) take Paul at face value where he says we have already been forgiven, and they say Jesus doesn't mean forgiveness in the traditional sense of the word.

    "Why does it matter?" Failure to recognize the God-determined divisions in scripture, specifically that between the Body of Christ and Israel, is THE cause of doctrinal division today.

    Thanks for asking, TH. Did I adequately answer your question? Would it help to see some practical examples?

    Randy
    Funny how threads morph.


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    Oh! One more question while I'm here:

    What is the significance of the crucifixion, ff. to the gospel of the Kingdom? Or is it significant? Was it always a part of God's plan (from the OV perspective -- so I guess this one will be a Randy question...)? or was it only the result of Israel's rejection and therefore only a part of the gospel of uncircumcision?

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    Could it be argued that the gospels (matthew thru John) can be placed in the OT?
    Contrary to what many Americans seem to think, the document we now call "the Constitution" and the Declaration of Independence are not pretty much the same thing or "connected in spirit," or "two sides of the same coin." The two documents were written by two different groups of people at two different times to accomplish two totally different goals.

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    Quote Originally Posted by assuranceagent View Post
    Oh! One more question while I'm here:

    What is the significance of the crucifixion, ff. to the gospel of the Kingdom? Or is it significant? Was it always a part of God's plan (from the OV perspective -- so I guess this one will be a Randy question...)? or was it only the result of Israel's rejection and therefore only a part of the gospel of uncircumcision?
    AA, a quick stab at this one:

    The death, burial, and resurrection was always a part of the plan. If you look at the feast days that God gave to Israel in Leviticus, they outline the "prophetic program".

    1. Passover (CROSS)
    2. Unleavened Bread
    3. First fruits (RESURRECTION)
    4. Pentecost

    5. Trumpets (TRIB)
    6. Day of Atonement (2nd coming- BLOTTING OUT OF SINS)
    7. Tabernacles (Kingdom)

    For the kingdom saints, they did not understand that Christ died for their sins on the cross. It was merely the passover lamb through which they received remission looking forward to the day of Atonement when their sins would be taken away.

    The Body of Christ, having been positionally risen with Christ, has already received the Atonement, the complete blotting out of sins.
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