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Points To Ponder Lesson 18

#1 User is offline   drlmorris 

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Posted 24 September 2009 - 10:48 AM

Please enter your answers to the questions given in this lesson here.
Instructor: Master of the Historical Jesus
Founder: The Historical Jesus Project
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#2 User is offline   graham 

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Posted 05 April 2010 - 08:49 AM

Please note: these answers are intended to apply to lesson 17 also as the task set seems to be very similar.

1. This verse from the book of Revelation (12.10), when considered in isolation, seems to suggest that God's kingdom has been made available to all those who accept it by virtue of the sacrifice of Christ and and the testimony of those who were willing to accept martyrdom on his behalf. The kingdom of God has now entered into their lives and souls and has become the ground of their being. The kingdom, therefore, has arrived in a spiritual manifestation not as one of this world. This excerpt is, however, bracketed by quite bizarre and apocalyptic passages which do not sit comfortably, in my opinion, with the overall tenor of the message of Christ and have more in common with passages in the Hebrew Scriptures which are intended to overwhelm by dint of the florid and hyperbolic style that is employed.

2. In this verse from Matthew (3:2), John the Baptist announces that the kingdom of heaven is imminent, thereby suggesting that the arrival of Jesus amongst them will signal that event. Jesus, therefore, is the embodiment of the kingdom of God which is characterised by humility, compassion and hope. This was, of course, in contradistinction to the expectations of many of his listeners and perhaps also to those of John himself who appears to have entertained a more apocalyptic vision as to how the kingdom might come about and the earthly turmoil that would accompany it.

3. Revelations (11:15) contains the celebrated words used by Handel in the Messiah which announce the transformaton of the kingdom of this world into the kingdom of God which will endure for ever. Once again, it is a nugget of simplicity in a morass of weird imagery and almost hallucinogenic depictions. It reinforces the message that the world has now finally and irrevocably been incorporated into the heavenly kingdom according to God's purpose. The significance of the announcement by the seventh angel to give the seal of finality should be noted.

4. It is a relief to return to John (18:36) and the essential message in Jesus' own simple words. He states that his kingdom is not of this world, attempting to impress on his interlocutors that his claims do not spring from earthly power but transcend such temporary and venal empires. Hereby, he hopes to explain to those who still hope for a saviour who will establish an earthly paradise and will punish those who oppose him according to earthly traditions, that his kingdom is very different. 'Now'. i.e. at this particular 'time'. his kingdom is from another place but this leaves open the possibility of the final judgement.

5. Hebrews is another strange and, in some ways, rather eccentric inclusion in the New Testament canon. The impression given is that is intended to recapitulate and reinforce the similarities and points of contact between nascent Christianity and the Jewish heritage. Dependent upon such factors as the date of authorship, the context and the intellectual symapthies of the writer, it may well be that it reflects the robust debate within the emerging church as to links with Judaism and the role of the Torah in their lifestyle and practices.
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#3 User is offline   rev c watson 

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Posted 24 July 2013 - 02:10 PM

Refer to lesson 17 :headbang:
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