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(On Clouds Imagery |
"The cloud, of course, symbolizes the Divine Glory of God, which, as always, must be hidden from men (even of faith), due to their incapacity to see it in its unveiled splendor" (ibid.).
[T]he cloud (a) manifests by symbolic and representational means the presence of the Divine Glory, (b) veils that glory from men, who cannot behold it, (c) exalts the one enveloped by the intimacy of the association with the Divine Glory, and (d) signals by its physical and visible rise into the heavens the spiritual and invisible nature of the exaltation of the one hidden by and enveloped within the cloud (P. 257).
"[W]e must emphasize that the Lord himself is invisible and is only made visible by the symbolic and representational cloud, which reveals the presence of his Divine Glory by hiding it" (ibid.).
"While [Acts 1:10-11] is generally cited to prove that the glorified Jesus will himself be personally visible at his second coming, it is in fact the case that the glorified Jesus cannot be seen by any man because his glorified person is veiled, hidden, and enveloped within the cloud of God's presence. ...Just as the disciples had not seen Christ going up to heaven, but rather the cloud which veiled him and his Divine Glory, so in the same manner, i.e., hidden within the cloud, he would return (ibid.)." [cite: How was Acts 1:11 Fulfilled]
“The whole Bible, the NT as well as the OT, is based on the Hebrew attitude and approach. We are of the firm opinion that this ought to be recognized on all hands to a greater extent” (Dr. Norman Snaith, The Distinctive Ideas of the Old Testament, p. 185).
“It is clear to us…that there is often a great difference between Christian theology and Biblical theology. [Is this really the Christ of the Bible who is presented to you in tract and sermon?] Throughout the centuries the Bible has been interpreted in a Greek context, and even the NT has been interpreted on the basis of Plato and Aristotle.”
“There have always been Jews who have sought to make terms with the Gentile world and it has in time meant the death of Judaism for all such. There have been Christians who from the beginning have sought to do this. Often it has been done unconsciously, but whether consciously or unconsciously, the question needs to be faced as to whether it is right.”
“If these judgments are sound, and we believe they are, then neither Catholic nor Protestant theology is based on the Biblical theology. In each case we have a domination of Christian theology by Greek thought” (cp. our quotation from Kirsopp and Lake above).
“What then is to be done with the Bible? Is it to be regarded as the norm and its distinctive ideas as the determining factor of Christian theology? Or are we to continue to regard Plato and Aristotle with their pagan successors as contributing the norm, and the main ideas of Greek philosophy as the determining ideas of Christian theology, with the Bible illustrating and confirming those Greek ideas when and where it is suitable?… We hold that there can be no right answer until we have come to a clear view of the distinctive ideas of both Old and New Testaments and their difference from the pagan ideas which have so largely dominated ‘Christian’ thought” (pp. 184-188)
What do YOU think ?
Snaith, Norman H. -- The Distinctive Ideas of the Old Testament Norman Snaith, a conservative scholar, says, “Is there still, in these days, such a thing as revealed religion? … Or, do we look to the transforming Power of the Holy Spirit working in man, and bringing him to God? … The Bible teaches that a man must be dominated by the Spirit of God, transformed, born again into a new life…. Dr. A. Nygren has dealt with the matter in connection with what his earlier translator, Father A. G. Hebert, has called ‘the fatal confusion between Agape and Eros which now obscures the meaning of Christianity’ (italics mine). P. 187 “What, then, is to be done with the Bible? Is it to be regarded as the norm, and its distinctive ideas as the determining factors of Christian theology? Or are we to continue to regard Plato and Aristotle with their pagan successors as contributing the norm, and the main ideas of Greek philosophy as the determining factors of Christian theology, with the Bible as illustrative and confirmatory when and where it is suitable? Father Hebert holds that ‘there can be no right answer to the question, “What is Christianity?” except by a clear view of the real meaning of the Agape of the New Testament, and its difference from the pagan Eros.’ We go no further. We hold that there can be no right answer until we have come to clear view of the distinctive ideas of both Old and New Testaments and their difference from the pagan ideas which so largely have dominated ‘Christian’ thought.” Norman H. Snaith, The Distinctive Ideas of the Old Testament (London: The Epworth Press) 188.
Date: 27 Jul 2010
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