Meeting Expectations

In case I haven’t mentioned it recently, I’m a big sports fan. The problem with being a fan is that more often than not, an expectation exists to win, and the truth is, most teams lose a good percent of their games.

Sure, there are the teams like the Alabama University football team that can reel off a good streak, but when they lose the “big game,” the expectations of the fans are dashed. Or how about the Dodgers’ baseball? They held something like a 20 game lead in their division, clinched a playoff spot before any other team, and still didn’t even make it to the World Series.

Never mind all the mid-tier teams that probably have no realistic shot of even making the playoffs. Like my Denver Broncos in the NFL. When the season started, I expected them to be pretty good. And they are. But they have lost 4 games in the final minute of play, once by not scoring and 3 times by allowing the other teams to score. Four loses in football are highly significant. A team that is 8-4 in December has a legitimate chance at a playoff spot. But the Broncos are languishing at 4-8 instead. My expectations for the team aren’t being fulfilled.

But that’s really life. There aren’t a lot of times that our expectations in life are all met. Something tends to gum up the works. It might be a transfer from a comfortable location to one that is far from family. It might be a promotion that went to someone else, or a love interest that did not reciprocate the feelings. It might be a leaky pipe that requires hours of plumber work. It could be as disastrous as a tornado or blizzard or wild fire. I’ve heard people who lost their homes saying things like, Yes, this was our dream home and now it’s gone.

Or how about illness or injury? Or a son or daughter who doesn’t like the same stuff you love. You want to share your passion with them, but they just don’t care. Then there are new pastors who don’t handle the job the way we thought a pastor would, or should.

What about the program you worked hours and hours on, practicing, preparing, and the night of the big performance, the mic doesn’t work properly and no one can hear what the performers say.

I could go on and on. I probably have too long already. I think it’s pretty clear that all of us, in whatever walk of life, are acquainted with unmet expectations.

I can only think of one instance in which we are never let down. That’s spiritually. Jesus Christ never lets us down.

Oh, sure, people might expect the wrong things from Him. They might expect that He answer their prayer the way they want and according to their timetable. Well, in that case, they can just put “answered prayer” in the column of unmet expectation. God doesn’t operate according to our dictates. He doesn’t take orders from us, because quite clearly He’s the one in charge. And He works stuff out for our spiritual good.

Our spiritual good is not necessarily the same as our physical good. I think of the Christians who left such strong witnesses by their suffering and even their deaths, and I know that the “momentary, light affliction” of this life is in no way comparable to the eternal weight of glory we will experience through God’s work in our lives.

It’s like putting temporary on one side of the scales and eternal on the other side and seeing which weighs more. Yeah, not even close. The scales tip so drastically toward the eternal, that it’s not even a contest.

So when something in the temporary doesn’t meet expectations, but all things in the eternal always meet expectations, how are we to react?

Honestly, if we were looking at the whole picture, we’d see how silly frustration or disappointment over the temporary actually is. It’s a lot like not doing well in practice. We might try hard, but if we come up short, what have we lost? Maybe a start in the big game, maybe even a chance to play at all. But what have we actually lost? Our poor play in practice did not hurt the team, and it might have actually taught me what I need to know for the game. It might actually be for my good.

Shocking, I know. But that’s actually how God works with us in life. We might face failed expectations and have to endure suffering or hardship. But the experience will never be wasted. God will use it to prep us for eternity. He might even use it in the here and now: like He did for Corrie ten Boom or Elisabeth Elliot or Joni Eareckson Tada. Suffering and hardship in the here and now, but astounding accomplishment and success in the here and now, also.

But even that success is spiritual. I mean, any number of lives have turned to Christ because of the witness of people like these three, or like Greg Laurie who lost his son, but not his faith in the goodness of God.

So in among all the disappointed expectations, we will never see our faithful God fail us or forsake us. But who is “us”? Any and all who believe in the name of His Son, the promised Messiah, the Christ, who takes away the sins of the world. We can go to the spiritual bank with the capital of His shed blood, and we will be spiritual millionaires.

Published in: on December 2, 2019 at 5:14 pm  Comments (94)  
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94 Comments

  1. “He doesn’t take orders from us, because quite clearly He’s the one in charge.” So good. So true. So comforting, and hard .. at the same time.

    BTW, Greg Lorry is actually Greg Laurie. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the encouragement, Amy. Also for the help with spelling Greg’s last name. Corrected now, thanks to you! 🙂

      Becky

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  2. So in among all the disappointed expectations, we will never see our faithful God fail us or forsake us.

    Didn’t the character, Jesus of Nazareth say:

    34 Verily I say unto you, This generation shall not pass, till all these things be fulfilled.

    So that was one unfulfilled expectation.

    And as for the character,Paul:
    There are several passages which indicate he expected the imminent return of Jesus, certainly within his lifetime.

    There are probably plenty of verses/passages which qualified scholars could identify.

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    • Context, Ark. I’ll explain more tomorrow when I have time, but there are context clues that let us know “generation” doesn’t mean precisely how we define it today. The word has many for meanings than “the people who all lived during a certain time period.” And the context helps us discover that meaning. As do other things Jesus said, such as the fact that no one would know the day or the hour of his coming back.

      Not sure why you think Paul was expecting Christ’s imminent return any more than any other group of followers down through the ages. We all think, it might be today. Or we could, if we don’t. I’ll admit, I don’t think about His return every day. But I know it’s coming. I’m just not sure if I’ll be one who sees it this side of heaven. Doesn’t really matter. God’s timing is as good as He is. He won’t be late.

      Becky

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      • Ah, the old ”context” defense.
        The hand waving piece of disengenuity you Christians always run to when you refuse to see the trees for the wood.

        Biblical Genocide: Context
        Slavery: Context.
        Murder: Context.

        It is so passe….

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        • How very postmodern of you, Årk, that you want to divorce words from their meaning.

          I guess I’ll spare the time I planned to use to explain the passage. Too bad. I think the question is legitimate, but clearly you don’t really want to know what Jesus was talking about. You just want a place you can point to in the Bible and claim that God didn’t do what He said. Well, your misunderstanding of it doesn’t mean that God is not faithful. In fact there’s a verse about that in the Bible, too. “What then? If some did not believe, there unbelief will not nullify the faithfulness of God, will it? May it never be. (Romans 3, somewhere around verse 4).

          Becky

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          • Nothing in my reply above is out of context.
            Christians just don’t like that the truth.

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          • You’re wrong, Ark. You have to look at what the question was that Jesus was answering and all the other stuff that He said. You have to look at what the word means in the Greek of the first century, and understand that our English translation may not carry with it the meaning Jesus was conveying. But no, you are just into “got-cha” and don’t want to actually learn what Jesus was saying. I get that. It’s par for the atheist course.

            Becky

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          • First, you have no idea what the character Jesus said, only what isclaimed he said by some unknown writer who put down the first gospel at least 40 years after his death.

            Theonus is on yhe claimant – you – to demonstrate the veracity of anything from the bible.
            So, if you wish to holler ”context” every time anyone pulls you up over such texts then you have to explain why your version is correct and why those who were with him or who heard the tales did believe his return was imminent.
            So far, neither you or any pother apologist has been successful in convincing any other than those already predisposed /indoctrinated in the christian religion.

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          • Ark, I’m sorry. Time got away from me, but I want to get back to you on this.

            You said we don’t actually know what Jesus said. As I think I’ve pointed out before, this is the point that divides us. I accept the revelation of God as factual, true, and authoritative; you don’t. It’s all a matter of declaring who you believe. You believe the “scholars” that don’t accept the Bible as the word of God. I believe the Bible itself as well as the scholars that verify its truth, both spiritually and historically.

            The “onus” you wish to put on me has been handled over and over and over; you simply choose not to believe it. I could give you book titles or links to videos and you would simply counter by giving me your own list of book titles and links. It’s a matter of who you choose to believe!

            But about the issue of context, I’m shocked that you find this to be some questionable “tactic.” Anything in all of history needs to be put into context to understand it. This is not something I’m inventing or something only Christians believe. It’s an accepted way of research and study.

            I can hardly explain to you why someone else looks at the same verses I do and comes up with a different interpretation. False teaching, perhaps? A misunderstanding of the context? I’d simply be guessing. But you sound as if I am coming up with my own ideas that somehow are in isolation from the main body of Christianity. I’m not.

            As to the fact that many Christians in the first century expected Jesus to return within their lifetime, that’s without a doubt. I dare say, people in every generation have expected His imminent return. To the point that Scripture even addressed the subject because some people were worried about friends or family who had died before Christ returned. The fact is, Christ Himself said no one knows the day or hour of His return. They didn’t know; we don’t know.

            As to others being convinced—Ark, that’s kind of an ignorant statement. Let’s start with Nabeel Quereshi who was raised as a Muslem, or how about Dr. Butterworth who was a university professor dedicated to the gay community of which she was a part. I could go on and on. It’s really a “head in the sand” statement to say that only people raised in Christian homes become Christians. It’s either naive or denial. Only you know which.

            Becky

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          • I accept the revelation of God as factual, true, and authoritative;

            Most young western children accept that Santa is real.

            So, the onus is on you the believer to provide evidence to substantiate your claim regarding what the character Jesus is claimed to have said.

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          • No, Ark. Most children early learn to differentiate between the real and the pretend. As I’ve said, scholars, theologians, apologists, down through the centuries have answered the arguments, showing that Jesus is exactly who He said He was and is. I can give you links, if you insist. But the point is, you will just find counter arguments to disprove the points. It’s not a matter of “evidence” as you claim. It’s a matter of who you choose to believe!

            Becky

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          • As I’ve said, scholars, theologians, apologists, down through the centuries have answered the arguments, showing that Jesus is exactly who He said He was and is

            Only those who are Christian.
            I will ask again, please provide evidence (and not simply claims,) for those things you claim were spoken by the character Jesus of nazareth.

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          • Ark, you keep changing your questions. The “claims” of things spoken by Jesus are conveyed in the primary and secondary documents, some written by eyewitnesses, some by first century scholars (at least one who stated that he had researched the facts.) These, you discount because you choose to believe what atheists say instead of what the eyewitnesses and first century scholars say. I get the feeling that the only thing you would accept as “evidence” would be a video of Jesus’s life, and even that you may suggest has been tampered with.

            The fact is, there were no reporters following Jesus around. Christianity wasn’t “a bit thing,” so there were no Roman or Greek historians noting His every move. Only after His resurrection when Christianity grew and became a notable movement, did any of the secular scholars have any reason to comment about Him and His life. It’s actually more amazing that He’s mentioned in secular records (which He is) at all.

            But interestingly, in all the discussion about Christianity and the early attempt to stop its growth and to silence its message, did any scholar say that Jesus had not really lived or done or said what His followers said. That is simply a modern construct, born out of the choice to believe something other than the truth.

            But earlier your question was about the very existence of Jesus. Here’s one video of many I could link to. I chose this one because it’s short. I don’t like the title of it, but it’s factual and clear. https://youtu.be/HFC6hHnoX9E

            Becky

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          • some written by eyewitnesses,

            There are no eyewitnesses accounts and there goes any argument you have for a ball of chalk.
            Period.

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          • And we are at the bottom line: even though the apostle Paul said he met the resurrected Jesus, you choose not to believe him. That’s really what the issue is: who do you choose to believe.

            Becky

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          • You mean the character Saul, claimed he heard a voice, obviously.
            Or are you referring to the claim in Acts 22?

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          • Yes, Ark. I mean the “character Saul” also known as Paul who identified himself as an apostle and a person to whom the resurrected Christ appeared. Would you like chapter and verse so you can look up his words for yourself?

            But my point is, you choose not to believe Paul, just because you choose to believe what others say to undermine his eyewitness account. It’s all a matter of who do you choose to believe.

            Becky

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          • Eyewitness account to what? An hallucination?

            Why would you beleive such a claim?

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          • And you continue to make my point, Ark. Paul said on multiple occasions that he saw the resurrected Jesus, and you don’t believe him. You choose to believe a different narrative that says he hallucinated, even though you have no scrape of evidence for such an idea. You have no reason to call into question Paul’s statements other than that you personally have never seen the resurrected Jesus. Essentially you’re saying, if you haven’t seen Him, it didn’t happen. You believe your own narrative, and I believe Paul and the many others who agree that Jesus did in fact rise from the dead and did in fact spend time in His resurrected body walking, talking, eating, with His followers.

            Becky

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          • Aside from the fact that dead people do not come back to life, I’m saying all we have to go on is the unverified testimony written in a book riddled with every conceivable error of someone for whom there is no evidence.

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          • A couple things, Ark. First, the “dead people do not come back to life” part. You are absolutely right, which is why the resurrection of Jesus is evidence of God and His power. Apart from Him, it doesn’t happen.

            Second, you say “book” as if all the books of the Bible were written as one whole. They were written independently of one another. Thus, when one verifies or confirms something a different book says, it’s a stronger evidence. So Paul did not say in his letters that he had seen the risen Christ out of the blue. The Gospels, the book of Acts, the letters of John, etc. also made the same statements—that eyewitnesses saw the resurrected Christ.

            Third, the “errors” you mention are atheist claims. There is no evidence of errors. I find it funny that the claim is first, the books of the Bible have no independent corroboration, and then that they are in error. If there is no independent corroboration, how is anyone able to discern error in the particulars? It’s really an illogical statement.

            Becky

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          • No evidence of errors?
            Let’s look a few shall we.
            Off the top of my head and in no particular order.
            The Johannine comma.
            Noah’s Ark and the Flood
            The long ending of Mark – interpolation. (there are in fact three known endings)
            Adam and Eve
            6 of Pail’s epistles are pseudoepigraphic – forgeries.
            Domestication of camels.
            The Exodus.

            All of the above attested to by biblical scholars historians and archaeologists.

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          • “The Johannine comma.
            Noah’s Ark and the Flood
            The long ending of Mark – interpolation. (there are in fact three known endings)
            Adam and Eve
            6 of Pail’s epistles are pseudoepigraphic – forgeries.
            Domestication of camels.
            The Exodus.”

            1. I have no idea what you mean by the Johannine comma. And since punctuation is not part of the original, that’s hardly evidence of error.
            2. You have no proof that there was no flood.
            3. The end of Mark is not accepted as part of the original. Not an evidence of error.
            4. You have no proof that Adam and Eve did not exist.
            5. You have no proof that any of Paul’s letters accepted into the canon of Scripture are forgeries.
            6. Domestication of camels? What an odd thing to say as evidence of errors. You have no proof that camels were not domesticated (and I’m not even sure when the Bible first mentions domesticated camels. But you have no evidence when they were, either).

            Again, your “biblical scholars historians and archaeologists” who “attest” to such things are not all in agreement, so it depends, as I’ve emphasized in this thread, on who you believe!

            Becky

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          • Odd you claim to know you bible yet you have no idea what the Johannine comma.
            I suggest you research it.

            2. You have no proof that there was no flood.

            Seriously? You actually beleive in a global flood and reject all the scientific evidence?
            I did not realise you were a Young Earth Creationist.
            Sorry, Becky, I have no interest in dialogue with someone who is so indoctrinated to make themselves look like a fool.
            Say hello to Ken Ham for me.

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          • I said nothing about being a YEC. You jump to wild conclusions, Ark. Again, you have no evidence to disprove a universal flood. You have claims.

            And I don’t mind that you think me a fool. That’s something the Bible tells us–that in the eyes of the unbelieving world, we will appear to be fools. So you have just given more Scripture validation in your effort to discredit me. Interesting how the Bible just keeps coming out as the most accurate description of the world!

            Becky

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          • Only YEC consider the tale of Noah’s Flood to be fact, so it stands to reason you are YEC.
            And anyone who considers the Noah’s ark a la the bible is simply a misguided idiot.

            Geological evidence demonstrates unequivocally there was no global flood.
            Example: How old do you think the pyramids are, for the gods’ sake?

            Stop being so willfully ignorant,, Becky. It just makes you look very silly.

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          • So sad, Ark, that you haven’t met any other people who believe the Bible than the ones who fit your stereotype. Read A Matter of Days by Hugh Ross and you’ll see you are dead wrong.

            And no, there is no such evidence you believe in. Seriously, it all depends on who you believe!!

            I’m afraid you’re the one being willfully ignorant, Ark. Apparently you think that people who believe the Bible just shut our eyes to other pieces of information. Well, that’s just not so. We also have science and geology and history we can point to that corroborates our belief in the Bible. That you don’t realize this is quite interesting.

            Becky

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          • Well, that’s just not so. We also have science and geology and history we can point to that corroborates our belief in the Bible.

            Fair enough. Please post a link to a peer reviewed article that fully corroborates the tale of Noah’s ark and the biblical flood.

            Regards.

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          • Hahah! As if you’ll find a journal of unbelievers publishing anything that refutes their firmly held beliefs. I can send you lots of articles by respected scholars who have published with publications open to people of faith.

            Remember, it’s all about who you believe.

            Becky

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          • Open to people of faith . Yes, quite!
            But not evidence.

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          • Evidence that points to what people of faith believe. People without faith find some way around the evidence.

            Becky

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          • There is no evidence to what ”people of faith believe,” there is only evidence.
            You either accept, reject it, or ignore it..

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          • That’s the point, isn’t it, Ark. You want atheists to control what you accept as evidence. But something as clear and obvious and relevant as what happened at Mount St. Helens, that somehow is not evidence. Really, how can this be? It’s a case of atheists either rejecting or ignoring the evidence and then saying it isn’t evidence because people of faith reach different conclusions than they do. It all depends on who you believe.

            Becky

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          • That’s the point, isn’t it, Ark. You want atheists to control what you accept as evidence.

            Not in the least.
            If one of your family or friends was convicted of murder because eyewitnesses claimed they saw him / her at the scene, identified a car that your family member drove and similar bits of ”evidence” you would be more than happy if a forensic scientist produced DNA results that showed conclusively that your family member could not possibly have committed the crime and thus was spared a life sentence. And before DNA forensices just how many people have been sentenced because of faulty ”evidence”?
            And THIS is why all you have are claims and arguments and NOT evidence.

            The claims put forward by Creationists regarding Mount st Helens have been explained/debunked.

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          • Say what you want, Ark. Doesn’t change the fact that I believe those eyewitnesses, as do other Christians. And since there is no DNA evidence, no surveillance cameras, you have to decide who you believe. The eyewitnesses or the doubters. You’ve chosen one, I’ve chosen the other and consequently we see the world differently.

            The thing is, built on top of those original eyewitnesses is so much more, down through the centuries, of God working in people’s lives. Not to mention that the Christian view of the way things work (why we are here, what our destiny is, etc.) is the most coherent one of all the various worldviews. It makes sense of life!

            Becky

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          • I believe those eyewitnesses,

            There are no eyewitnesses. The gospels are anonymous.

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          • You keep making this claim. But the early church identified the authors of the gospels and that has been passed down throughout time. You simply do not choose to believe. But I’m not even talking about them. I’m talking about guys who wrote the letters, like Paul, who signed his name and we have his words and his own report of his encounter with Jesus. Or Peter in his first letter. They are eyewitnesses, but you clearly ignore, reject, or explain away their direct testimony.

            Becky

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          • At least 6 or Paul’s letters are forgeries.
            ”Signed his name”? Really? You’ve seen his signature have you?

            He never encountered Jesus. That is a blatant falsehood.
            He saw a vision or had an hallucination.
            You are correct in as much as the church attached names to the gospels.
            However, the actual authors of the gospels are unknown.
            I Peter is now recognised as a forgery by many scholars.

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          • You’ve brought up the forgery claim before, Ark. And as I’ve said, even if I give you that (which is nothing but an unsubstantiated claim), it doesn’t take away from his other letters.

            Yes, he starts every one of his letters by telling the recipient right in the beginning, who he was: “Paul, an apostle, “Paul a bond-servant,” Paul and Timothy bond-servants,” and so on. This was the form of letter writing of the day. Peter did the same and so did others.

            When you say that Paul never encountered Jesus, you are making a claim based on no facts at all. You simply do not believe his word. For no factual, evident reason. YOU say he was hallucinating, but Paul said he saw Jesus.

            Again, your claim that the actual authors of the various books, particularly the gospels, are unknown, but you have no reason to disregard the centuries of history, passed down in various ways, that say we do know who these writers are. You simply do not choose to believe what others have said for centuries.

            The idea that 1 Peter is a forgery is laughable. You might be thinking of 2 Peter, but the only “scholars” who take the forgery view of parts of the Bible are those who don’t believe it. Why don’t you study what those who do believe it say? They are in a much better position to know.

            Becky

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          • So, the answer have you seen his signature is a ‘No’, then.

            The idea that 1 Peter is a forgery is laughable.

            Nope, 1 Peter is a forgery, but I am at least a little heartened that you consider the possibility that 2 Peter is a forgery.
            I have read up on the fundamentalist view, and it is all driven by tainted scholarship that is underpinned by faith.
            The same nonsense that cause you to believe that Noah’s Flood was a literal historical event.

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          • Not at all, Ark. No forgery for either of Peter’s letters. I just know that’s the claim about 2 Peter.

            Please, all the Biblical scholars who believe it is true are doing “tainted scholarship”? Doesn’t that say right there that you have a determined outcome that you expect and anyone else is “tainted.”

            Again with the claim that you have not every proved about the flood. You can’t do it. There is no evidence to say this did not happen.

            Becky

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          • Oh, as to the “debunking” of the evidence from Mount St. Helen’s, that is factual, verifiable evidence that can’t be “debunked.” What you are referring to is that atheists have found a way around the evidence, to ignore it, to explain it away (though all I’ve ever read is something like, Doesn’t prove anything.)

            Becky

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          • Nope. It’s been debunked.

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          • You don’t even know what I’m talking about, Ark. You can’t “debunk” the fact that a canyon now exists where one did not exist before. You can’t “debunk” the geological strata or the existence of the bed of rotting logs at the bottom of a lake. There’s no “debunking” actual facts that come with pictures and scientific data!

            Becky

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          • So you are a young earth creationist?

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          • Not taking the bait, Ark. Sorry.

            B

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          • You don’t have to. Your silence condemns you.

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          • Hahah. Quite manipulative, but I’m still not biting.

            Becky

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          • How many times must I tell you: I will not set myself up for you to mock on your own site. Been there, done that, not doing it again. I don’t know why you would expect me to do so.

            Becky

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          • Hypocrite.

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          • Typical resort to name calling when deflection has failed. The point I made is, you can’t “debunk” actual facts and evidence that has taken place in modern times. No debunking possible. There are new canyons and peat beds that have formed which shows that a flood is not beyond the possibility of known experience. It’s not something that can be dismissed just because. You need evidence, and there is none.

            Becky

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          • Name calling?
            Hypocrite is a character description, Becky.

            Your resources are YEC – this is not scientific data.

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          • I’m sorry, but everything I’ve said about the Mt. St. Helens event can be verified by any scientist. Any!

            And, Ark, I don’t know why you think you’ve uncovered my “hypocritical” character when the facts do not bear this out. I said I wouldn’t discuss my position about the age of the earth. It’s not hypocritical for me to repeat, I’m not discussing it with you.

            Becky

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          • Yes, I am aware of this but your false interpretation is derived from Young Earth Creationists, who I have already mentioned practice pseudo science.

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          • You are jumping to conclusions, Ark. My belief in the flood as an actual historical event is no different from any other Christian who believes the Bible, whether young earth or old such as Hugh Ross. Perhaps you should read his book “A Matter of Days,” to see that believing the Bible does not cement someone into a particular, non-biblical idea about creation. Once again, the issue is that God did create, that the events of the Bible did really happen. No more, no less.

            Becky

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          • blockquote>Once again, the issue is that God did create, that the events of the Bible did really happen.

            What evidence can you provide that verifies the tale of the biblical flood.
            Oh, and as far as I am aware, Ross does not consider the flood tale as described to be historical.

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          • Sorry for the delay in answering, Ark. Actually Ross does believe in the flood: “I trusted in Jesus as my Savior after a two-year personal study of the Bible that convinced me that Scripture is free of contradiction and error—doctrinally, historically, and scientifically” (p 14).

            As far as evidence is concerned, I’m pretty sure you will not appreciate the evidences from Christian sources like Answers in Genesis, so here are two others. The video is long, but I’m also linking to an article which reads in app. 10 minutes. First the video:

            And the article: https://science.howstuffworks.com/nature/climate-weather/storms/great-flood1.htm

            Becky

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          • So? It seems a legit site and I see nothing untoward regarding the flood theory, although I can’t find anything that suggests it is a given there was a global flood.
            Irrespective, how does this tie in with your YEC Noah’s Flood nonsense?

            Re Ross:
            Dr. Ross and his Reasons to Believe organization teach that the extent of the flood was only local, around the Mesopotamian plain. They state:

            Despite this consideration, (that a worldwide flood would require more water than the earth and the atmosphere can hold) the description of the flood does read as if the water covered the entire globe. Perhaps, however, we are forgetting that the writer would have had no concept of planet or globe. “The whole earth” or “the face of the whole earth” to an ancient might mean something like “from horizon to horizon,” or, “as far as anyone has ever ventured.” The size and sphericity of the earth are relatively recent discoveries.[2]
            One of the reasons that Dr. Ross believes in a local flood is that he believes only the birds and mammals were killed. He says:

            A close examination of the text reveals that only two Hebrew words are used in the Genesis flood account to refer to the animals destroyed by the flood, and to those taken aboard the ark. The words are nephesh and basar. The word nephesh translates as “soulish” animals and refers to those creatures endowed with characteristics of mind, will, and emotions, creatures with a unique capacity to relate to humans. We call them mammals and birds. It is their soulishness which makes them particularly susceptible to the effects of man’s sin. The word basar refers more specifically to those birds and mammals that are part of man’s economic system, that is, to livestock, poultry, game animals, any birds or mammals that have had contact with man.[3]

            https://www.icr.org/article/hugh-ross-icr-bible

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          • YOU are the one who has labeled my YEC, Ark. I have consistently refused to jump into that or any other box, and I’ve given you my reasons. I believe the Bible to be true. You asked for evidence of Noah’s flood. You can’t pretend that it’s nonsense when there is so much evidence worldwide! But that’s beside the point. Yes, a good many Christians believe the flood was local as opposed to global (I think the article pointed that out). That’s their prerogative. It’s a matter of interpretation. It doesn’t detract from someone saying he believes the Bible to be historically true and yet to disagree with someone else who says he believes the Bible is historically true and has a different view. The fact is, there are unknowns that people basically speculate about. None of it matters except that God saw wickedness that needed to be punished. Since the Old Testament is the record of God interacting with the Hebrews for the benefit of the whole world, it’s easy to see both approaches to interpreting the specifics. But they remain speculation. God didn’t give us the dimensions of the area covered with water, or the depth of it. People speculate. And none of it can measure what God might do that is beyond the pale of human experience. So we don’t know the details. Arguing over them is pointless. I’m only answering you request for evidence.

            Becky

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          • Fair enough. So are you saying you are not a Young Earth Creationist?

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          • Ark, you are too funny. I’m saying, as I’ve said multiple times in this discussion, I’m not saying.

            I have a perspective based on my interpretation that may or may not be right. I don’t believe God has given us the kinds of details that make it practical to hold adamantly to any of the current positions. I believe the Bible is true, but how God created or how long it took Him isn’t something we have to worry over.

            Becky

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          • I have a perspective based on my interpretation that may or may not be right.

            A perspective based on personal interpretation that is not supported by evidence is nothing more than opinion.

            And opinions are like backsides …. we all have one.

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          • Exactly. It’s my opinion, not Scriptural fact, which is why I have told you I’m not going to tell you my thoughts on the subject. They are purely subjective. I think they are based on fact but I could be wrong, because I am speculating.

            Becky

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          • I think they are based on fact but I could be wrong, because I am speculating.

            And what facts are they based on Becky?

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          • The main one—that God created the heavens and the earth.

            Becky

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          • Right … opinion and no evidence.

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          • And, as always, there is evidence. Just because you arrive at some other conclusion, doesn’t mean there’s no evidence. You even admitted that there are no structures that have not been built by someone, that nothing in this world could be created with causing this world. The existence of this world is direct evidence that God exists.

            Becky

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          • You have yet to provide evidence, Becky.
            The existence of this world is evidence of existence of this world.

            A presuppositional claim without evidence remains an unsupported claim.
            Period.

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          • And yet I have provided evidence. We’ve even discussed it. The origin of the universe proves that Someone with personality and a moral compass brought it all into being. The universe simply cannot bring itself into being. The existence of the universe is irrefutable evidence that God exists. You can call Him the First Cause, if you want to, but you can’t deny the evidence of all nature you see around you. Something outside this world had to bring this world into being.

            And then there are the other things we’ve discussed before, starting with complexity.

            See https://rebeccaluellamiller.wordpress.com/2020/02/17/the-character-of-god/ for the short version of the list.

            Becky

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          • Nonsense!
            The Kalam argument holds no water and has been refuted.
            Go see Sean Caroll

            And as for ”God”, you have never demonstrated how your god is the cause.

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          • Sorry, Ark. I had to look up “Kalam argument,” I have no idea who Sean Caroll is or why you think he has said something that disproves what simple logic makes clear. There is NOTHING in our world that has been made without there being a maker. Things made have makers. That’s it. And since this world/universe had a beginning, we can deduce that it is not eternal, therefore it is made by someone or something outside of this world. Because clearly, something within a made thing can’t also be the maker. A character in a book, didn’t write the book.

            But interestingly, as a side note, the author can choose to put himself in the book as a character. That’s interesting because that’s what God did in the incarnation.

            But to your last statement. You’re right. I haven’t at this point addressed how I know that the God of the Bible is also the God who is the First Cause.

            That’s also by logic and deduction, and I’m happy to have that conversation if you want.

            Becky

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          • OK, I looked up the term “Johannine comma,” not a phrase that’s in the Bible, of course. I had no idea this was an issue atheists clung to. There is no debate here. The verse “does not appear in the oldest Latin manuscripts.” Consequently modern English (and I suppose, other languages) do not include it. That the 17th century King James Authorized Version had the verse in the text is actually a byproduct of those translators working off only 7 documents, whereas today’s scholars use the hundreds that have been uncovered since. Which has nothing to do with “errors.”

            Becky

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          • Oh, and it doesn’t matter what these ”books” claim nothing that was claimed was corroborated.

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          • Ark, the point is, John corroborates Paul and Peter corroborates James and James agrees with Luke and Luke testifies of the veracity of Paul. And on and on. That the books have been collected into one document should not be used as evidence against them. You’re looking for someone who did not believe to corroborate the message. Then I suppose you’d be somewhat willing to listen. But the fact is, when the people met Christ or met people who had been with Him and seen Him in His resurrected form, they became convinced. Unlikely, then, that someone would come face to face with someone who they had seen hanging lifelessly on a cross and say, “Well, OK, I’ll give you this resurrection point, but that’s it. I’m still not believing in what He said He was all about.”

            Becky

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          • Internal corroboration is not evidence as the gospels are anonymous, and 7 of the epistles are pseudoepigrahic (forgeries).

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          • Once again, Ark. Not sure why this is hard for you to understand. Until the 4th century, all the books WERE independent of one another, other than that Christians were passing them around from church to church. They only became “internal” evidence after they had been collected. And you have made claims without evidence about some (but not all) of the independent books. Your idea that this is some internal corroboration is not factual!

            Becky

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          • Yes they were.
            Once again,Becky. Not sure why this is hard for you to understand.
            The synoptic gospels are NOT independent accounts. of historical events
            The gospels didn’t need to be in book form for the writers of Matthew and Luke to have plagiarized from gMark, which is what happened.
            They were for different audiences after all.
            To illustrate this point further.
            One doesn’t need to be a scholar to realise that 600 plus verses of gMatthew are in gMark, some almost verbatim.

            So, ostensibly what we have are anonymous, plagiarized gospels, written at least 40 years after the supposed events, 7 epistles written by the same hand – someone called Paul, the rest of the epistles being pseudoepigraphic (forgeries) , and various other interpolations and falsely assigned text.

            That’s your New Testament.

            Much of the Torah is simply geopolitical foundation myth.

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          • Again, Ark, you completely miss the point! What you say about the Bible depends on who you believe. I have no problem understanding your ideas. You really don’t need to insult me. I simply DISAGREE. Is that so impossible to understand? I do not think the same about the gospels as you do. There are hundreds, possibly thousands of Bible scholars who do not agree with you.

            Your idea of “plagiarism” is an unsubstantiated claim. As if two people could witness the same event and record the same actions and words “almost verbatim.” First, they aren’t verbatim and second, if they both heard and saw the same thing, why wouldn’t they record the same thing?!

            Your ideas of the Bible are nothing more than atheist claims so that you can dismiss the truth God reveals there. I trust the Bible. You don’t. That’s the divide between our thinking.

            Becky

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          • Evidence is evidence. If you wish to dismiss evidence and disagree then that’s fine by me. ‘Tis a free world(sort of).

            After all if that nutter Ken Ham can build a copy of Noah’s ark and charge people to visit it then more fool them. He’s laughing all the way to the bank.

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          • I have no idea what he believes or what motivates him and I’m certainly not going to judge him on hearsay. What his project does do is bring the facts the Bible presents, to life. Believe it or not. You choose who to believe. That it could have happened has never been refuted.

            You seem to be tied up into knots by what some people say the results of such a flood would have been. The fact is, we can only speculate. Certainly a cataclysmic event would have cataclysmic results, but we have no record (not even a geological record people agree upon) that tells us what the world became. You can speculate all you want, but as atheists love to say, those are just claims.

            Becky

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          • What his project does do is bring the facts the Bible presents, to life.

            So, like Ham, you consider that humans and dinosaurs co existed?

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          • Have you read the book? No, I suppose not. My point is, not everyone who believes the Bible to be true and accurate reaches the same conclusions as you are saying that that guy reaches. I haven’t read up on what he believes, and I’ve already told you I’m not opening myself to more mocking on your site by giving you the specifics of what I believe, apart from this: I believe the Bible. I believe it’s factual and authoritative. That doesn’t mean I take the same passages others do and reach their conclusions. Same as Huge Ross. Believes the Bible to be true and accurate; does not make the same conclusions you are suggesting. The only thing that matters actually is this: God created. How and when and how long ago, He didn’t tell us. So the assumptions of some may differ from the assumptions of others. You need to realize that there are differences of opinions. Not every Christian draws the same conclusions. I know that’s true of atheists. I hope you see this point.

            Becky

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          • That’s all god and well, but, like Ken Ham, do you believe humans and dinosaurs co-existed?

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          • I find it funny that you think this is an important question, Ark. I have already told you, I’m not putting my ideas on the subject out there for you to mock. I believe what the Bible says. To my knowledge there is no info on dinosaurs per se in the Bible. Anything about them, then, is speculation. I have my ideas, but it bears no relevance on the truthfulness of the Bible because they are simply my ideas.

            Becky

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          • Christianity is ALL about interpretation and ideas. This is why there are so many, many sects.
            It is also why some Christians are Trinitarians and some are not and why there has been in fighting and pogroms and internecine wars since the movement got started.

            If you think I will mock your view regarding any beliefs that humans and dinosaurs co-existed suggests that you do, in some way, believe they did, otherwise you would simply deny it outright.

            And it bears every relevance to the the supposed truthfulness of the bible, because of Christians can’t understand it then how on earth do they know where it is true or not?
            So, you are a YEC who considers humans and dinosaurs co existed.
            What evidence do you have to base this on?

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          • Go ahead, Ark. Jump to conclusions since YOU are basing your opinion on facts you DON’T have. I see why you dismiss Christianity so readily. You really only have a surface understanding of things that are complex and detailed. You also don’t seem to care that I have said, Christians, like atheists, don’t walk in lock step on these issues. What we agree upon is central to our identification with Christ and His work in the world, but that doesn’t mean we all see some of the peripheral issues exactly the same.

            You are right and wrong about the various Christian sects. Some are false—not actually even trying to align with the Bible, though they want to identify as Christians (for some strange reason). Some see those peripherals I mentioned differently, but we still agree on what defines a Christian. There is more unity than you’re aware of.

            Becky

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          • You really only have a surface understanding of things that are complex and detailed-

            Perhaps you would like to offer an example or two?

            Some are false—not actually even trying to align with the Bible,

            If the bible is all about interpretation then
            everyone who considers themselves a Christian is a Christian.
            Christadelphians for example.

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          • Ark, no. Words have meaning. People can’t just make up what they want the Bible to say. That’s called false teaching. So is inventing other books that are . . . invented.

            Examples: groups like the Mormons or Jehovah’s Witnesses who don’t believe in the deity of Christ. (The Mormons believe in all kinds of other strange things—Satan was Jesus’s brother, we’re all becoming gods like Jesus, and a bunch of other stuff that does not come from Scripture). I don’t think it’s hard to understand: people who call themselves Christians but who intentionally do things that show they do not believe what Jesus Christ said, they aren’t Christians.

            Becky

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          • people who call themselves Christians but who intentionally do things that show they do not believe what Jesus Christ said, they aren’t Christians.

            You don’t do some of the things Jesus said and no Christian that I am aware of does either …. including my own mother.
            Christadelphians consider themselves to be Christian, as do Catholics.
            But you donpt really consider either of these sects to be proper Christian, do you?
            Hypocrites one and all.

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          • I’m not familiar with “Christadelphians.” But there are many Catholics who are Christians. Not all, just as not all people of other denominations are Christians. The group you belong to, the church you attend, does not define you as a Christian. What you believe about Jesus, does.

            Of course Christians sin, but the idea here is intentionally, knowingly going against something He taught. Not once. But as a lifestyle. I was thinking of a hate-filled group (family, really) called the Westborough Baptists who some years ago picketed military funerals with awful signs and slogans. I’ve written about them here before. They are so far from Christ’s command to love our neighbors as ourselves, it is tragic, because they took the name of Christ as if they actually were following Him. But they were doing the opposite.

            There are any number of other examples. It’s not hard to spot them if you know what Christ said and what He wanted for His followers.

            Becky

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          • What you believe about Jesus, does.
            And who determines if that belief is correct?

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          • The Bible does.

            Becky

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          • It’s a matter of who you choose to believe!

            No, Becky, it isn’t.
            Evidence is evidence.
            The is no evidence that shows the earth is flat.
            There is no evidence that shows the earth is 10,000 years old.
            There is no evidence of an ark or a global flood and only the willfully ignorant choose to think these things are true.

            So, I reiterate, you have to provide evidence for any claim you make regarding the character Jesus of Nazareth.

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