Answering Folly

In a previous post, my friend Joe from Oil For Your Lamp attempted to inform a commenter with the screen name of GMpilot, that what he spews against the evidence for Jesus Christ in the Scriptures (as well as what is shown through historical, extra-biblical sources) is a matter of a person being “irrational, delusional, and insane.”

Sounds harsh…right?  But after reading what the Bible (and Jesus Himself) says about such persons, we prove the points in Jeremiah 17:9-10.

For clarity, here is the comment written by Joe:

Black3Actual Says:

August 6, 2016 at 7:24 pm

CJW: GM’s response to you is why we should hold EVERYTHING he says suspect. He claims Josephus was born some 400 years after Christ Died, HOWEVER, even Wiki knows he lived 37-100 AD (they use CE, but same general thing). This means Josephus was alive and old enough to have had actual discussions with first-hand witnesses.

Furthermore, GM likes to argue that people do not respond to his points, or make spurious replies, yet he has just done the same thing. It does not matter about WHAT Josephus said, it matters that he acknowledged that Christ was a real figure in history, and that his life outside Scripture was generally acknowledged to have been the same as IN the Scriptures. To the intellectually honest, this is called corroborating evidence.

Furthermore, notice how he picks on one narrow aspect of this outside evidence, and only on that evidence which he believes he can ‘interpret’ to his favor. First, he has NO EVIDENCE that anything has been ‘corrupted,’ so — like Franklin — he admits he is only speculating according to his own biases. Second, he ignores the corroborating evidence which is stronger than the one he chose to dissect. ALL of this is fallacious (and if you know that while you are doing it, deceitful) argumentation.

There is MUCH outside evidence to testify that the Scriptures are accurate, and that Christ died and rose again. I bet GM does not even know that the global eclipse and a global earth quake were recorded by at least 3 extra-Biblical sources considered — in their times, anyway — to be “scholars.’ The interesting part of these records is they were recorded in distant geographical regions, and all of them agree — pinning Christ’s death to the year 32-33 AD! This is not only powerful support of the Scriptures but — if it were not connected to the claim that Christ IS God — it would be considered definitive proof. But because people do not want to face the ramifications of acknowledging Christ’s true identity, they deny what would otherwise be counted as FACT!

So, how does one argue with a person who — by their own admission — refuses to acknowledge fact? I mean, by definition, such people are not only irrational, but delusional, which is also defined as insane.

My response:

Joe, you and I both know that no matter what evidence is provided to GM, his purpose here is to ignore it and continue to spew his rhetoric – no matter how irrational, delusional and insane he makes himself appear to be.

I love how God’s Word is filled with answers regarding such people. Proverbs tells us to “answer a fool according to his folly.”

Pro 26:5

Answer a fool according to his folly,
Lest he be wise in his own eyes.

Yet, Proverbs also tells us to “not answer a fool according to his folly.”

Pro 26:4

Do not answer a fool according to his folly,
Lest you also be like him.

This is godly wisdom that informs us that there will come a time when “answering a fool” becomes too ridiculous to continue to do so. That is where you and I are… regarding GM.

You nailed it when you wrote:

But because people do not want to face the ramifications of acknowledging Christ’s true identity, they deny what would otherwise be counted as FACT!

So, how does one argue with a person who — by their own admission — refuses to acknowledge fact?

Unregenerate man is described in Jeremiah 17:9. Jeremiah 17:10 informs us what happens through the entire lifetime of a man or woman.

1. The LORD searches the heart.
2. He tests the mind.
3. He gives every man according to his ways.
4. According to the fruit of his doings.

If a man or woman’s heart rejects the salvation and regeneration of the heart afforded by Christ, then his/her heart remains deceitful and desperately wicked. Some would object to this because they believe that they are “good.” But the truth about the evil in man is revealed by Christ Himself! That link is only a portion of examples where Christ agrees with the fact that “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; Who can know it?!”

Jer 17:9

“The heart is deceitful above all things,
And desperately wicked;
Who can know it?

Jer 17:10

I, the LORD, search the heart,
I test the mind,
Even to give every man according to his ways,
According to the fruit of his doings.

The Gospel of Christ solves our most deep and desperate need. Jesus said that we must be “born again” of the spirit. There is no other way! Christ IS THE WAY!

Every person’s heart is searched by the LORD. Every person’s mind is tested. Every man – according to his ways and according to the fruit of his doing – will result in reconciliation with God or separation from Him forever in eternity.

What we discuss here is vital! Though many choose to mock it, there will be some, perhaps a remnant, who will heed what is shared and as Jude informs us:

Jde 1:23

but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire,[fn] hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

Jude 1:3-1:16 and 1:17-19 describes those with “deceitful and desperately wicked hearts.” It’s not a pretty picture!

However, the following beautiful verses from Jude instructs us and informs us of what believers in Jesus Christ recognize as being what is in store for us.   Jude’s words teach us what we are to do and  how we can endure what evildoers throw at us in this fallen world:

Jde 1:1

Jude, a bondservant of Jesus Christ, and brother of James,
To those who are called, sanctified[fn] by God the Father, and preserved in Jesus Christ:

Jde 1:2

Mercy, peace, and love be multiplied to you.

Jde 1:3

Beloved, while I was very diligent to write to you concerning our common salvation, I found it necessary to write to you exhorting you to contend earnestly for the faith which was once for all delivered to the saints.

Jde 1:20

But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit,

Jde 1:21

keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

Jde 1:22

And on some have compassion, making a distinction;[fn]

Jde 1:23

but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire,[fn] hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

Jde 1:24

Now to Him who is able to keep you[fn] from stumbling,
And to present you faultless
Before the presence of His glory with exceeding joy,

Jde 1:25

To God our Savior,[fn]
Who alone is wise,[fn]
Be glory and majesty,
Dominion and power,[fn]
Both now and forever.
Amen.

NKJV Footnotes

(1:1)

NU-Text reads beloved.

(1:4)

NU-Text omits God.

(1:12)

NU-Text and M-Text read along.

(1:22)

NU-Text reads who are doubting (or making distinctions).

(1:23)

NU-Text adds and on some have mercy with fear and omits with fear in first clause.

(1:24)

M-Text reads them.

(1:25)

NU-Text reads To the only God our Savior.

(1:25)

NU-Text omits Who . . . is wise and adds Through Jesus Christ our Lord.

(1:25)

NU-Text adds Before all time.

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11 Responses to “Answering Folly”

  1. Black3Actual Says:

    They will not be able to claim they were not warned…

    Liked by 1 person

    • christinewjc Says:

      Very true! It is the willful rejection of the Gospel of Christ! With all the ways that this generation’s technology advances have produced, people cannot legitimately claim that “they didn’t know.” Many choose not to know! They let the “cares of the world” block out truth, righteousness and godliness. Instead, they are immersed in every kind of evil imaginable; or, they allow themselves to be hooked on mindless video games, social media, and the latest craze – like Pokemon Go. Even worse is the porn addiction. There are ads here in CA for a proposition to require condoms for porn actors! I thought…what??? How far down the cesspool of evil has this world fallen? The criminality of politicians has skyrocketed, but people either fear for their lives or for the loss of money so there is no prosecution for wrongdoing anymore.

      Today, we are living in the times as the Bible prophesied – “it would be as In the days of Noah and the days of Lot.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • Black3Actual Says:

        EXACTLY! To the 1st Century Hebrew, “As in the Days of Noah” is like us saying “In Star Trek:” It sounds like a few words, but it is an entire story — and is understood that way.

        As for people not having an excuse: remember Romans 1-2. Even if they never hear the Gospel, the universe testifies that there is a Creator. The BEST scientists all say that, at first, ‘science’ makes you into an Atheist, but once you dig deep, below the surface, you WILL find God there waiting for you. So even the heavens testify to His name, and only those who deliberately CHOSE not to believe will deny Him.

        Liked by 1 person

      • christinewjc Says:

        Joe,

        Interestingly enough, I heard a brief portion of a sermon on the radio yesterday. I was not familiar with this particular pastor and can’t remember his name, but he mentioned several things that apply to “the days of Noah.” He stated that 1,800 years had passed since man sinned in Eden and Noah built the ark. One hundred years (or was it 120 years?) was the time that Noah spent building the ark and encouraging people to repent of their sins. We know that none of the sinning mockers believed Noah or his family members when they were given the warning about the upcoming flood. Not one additional person (besides Noah’s family) saw themselves in need of repentance to God!

        It is like that today. There are so few people who think that they are in need of repentance to God for their sins. Therefore, they ignore the warnings given by followers of Christ. What’s more, we see a huge increase in sin, evil and death all around us! Yes…we are “in the Days of Noah,” and the sexual immorality going on shows that we are also “in the Days of Lot.”

        The Pharisees asked the question, “when the kingdom of God would come.”

        Luk 17:20

        Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation;

        He gives them foresight about the indwelling of the Holy Spirit when he said:

        Luk 17:21

        “nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’[fn] For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”

        Jesus warns of the future desire “to see one of the days of the Son of Man”, but they “will not see it.” following false prophets:

        Luk 17:22

        Then He said to the disciples, “The days will come when you will desire to see one of the days of the Son of Man, and you will not see it.

        Jesus warns of following false prophets:

        Luk 17:23

        “And they will say to you, ‘Look here!’ or ‘Look there!’[fn] Do not go after them or follow them.

        Jesus tells us how he will appear “in His day” and shares the foresight of His rejection and crucifixion:

        Luk 17:24

        “For as the lightning that flashes out of one part under heaven shines to the other part under heaven, so also the Son of Man will be in His day.

        Luk 17:25

        “But first He must suffer many things and be rejected by this generation.

        Jesus described how people will be on the earth before He returns:

        Luk 17:26

        “And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man:

        Luk 17:27

        “They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.

        Luk 17:28

        “Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built;

        Luk 17:29

        “but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all.

        Luk 17:30

        “Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed.

        Luk 17:31

        “In that day, he who is on the housetop, and his goods are in the house, let him not come down to take them away. And likewise the one who is in the field, let him not turn back.

        Luk 17:32

        “Remember Lot’s wife.

        Luk 17:33

        “Whoever seeks to save his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Black3Actual Says:

        Christine,

        There is a further warning to the Church in Christ’s words. When He reminds us that the fire and brimstone came down even as Lot was leaving, Christ is reminding us that God saves His people JUST as His judgment comes to the world. So this notion of a pre-trib rapture should be held suspect. By embracing the idea that we will be spared the tribulation, the Church goes to sleep (becomes lukewarm). This is why I suspect that understanding is the work of Satan; that and because the Apostles tell us that judgment starts with the Church. So I see a many-fold warning in Christ’s words: not just to the unsaved, but to His Church, as well.

        Liked by 1 person

      • christinewjc Says:

        Yes. Judgment does start with the church. That is why the following verse to be “diligent” and “rightly divide[ing] the word of truth” is essential in our Christian walk:

        2Ti 2:15

        Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, a worker who does not need to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.

        However, once saved, believers appear at the Judgment Seat of Christ while the lost appear at The Great White Throne Judgment.

        I don’t wish for the differing views of the Pre-Trib, Mid-Trib., and Post-Trib views of the end times to divide us. But in the studying that I have done, the Pre-Trib Rapture makes the most sense. Yes, Lot and family were escaping from Sodom as the fire and brimstone came down, but they were obviously rescued from the wrath of God at that time. The same can be said of The Flood. Noah and his family were rescued from the flood waters and thus the wrath of God at that time.

        The first book that I ever studied and read about the book of Revelation was Ed Hindson’s The Book of Revelation: Unlocking The Future. I attended a lecture series done by Ed Hindson at a church that our family attended for 10 years and it was excellent!

        In a review at Amazon, it shows that Hindson is respectful of other views but concentrates on the Pretribulation view:

        Hindson sticks to his view while still being respectful of others, even quoting them favorably at times. This volume is not in any way an attack on other eschatological views, which is refreshing, since others devote countless pages to debate rather than the actual biblical text. The downside is that Hindson interacts very little with other views, so the reader will not get a wide variety of ideas to ponder in this book. However, Hindson’s goal is to focus on the key issues in each chapter, and he is focused throughout. I used this commentary in a 400 level Bible course. I got the book secondhand, and it is holding up well. It cleared up a lot of my misconceptions about Pretribulationalism. I would recommend it to any adult with even the slightest desire to have a better understanding of Revelation. It delivers.

        Joe, I know that you have done much study on the book of Revelation and that you reject the Pretribulation Rapture. I also read at your blog that you do not think that there is one “person” who becomes the Antichrist. Yes, there are many Scripture verses that describe that there are many antichrists in the world. However, Hindson does a great job (using Scripture) in Chapter 13 – “Rise of Antichrist” (especially pp. 144-149) to explain that both concepts are true! The great conflict of the End Times pits the unholy trinity (Satan, Antichrist, False Prophet) against the holy Trinity (Father, Son, Holy Spirit).

        It is OK for us to agree to disagree on this issue. These different views STILL acknowledge what is most crucial to Christianity – Christ will return, defeat Satan, and reign forever! Jesus Christ unites all believers!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Black3Actual Says:

        Christine,

        In Revelation, we see the same story told two different times. Revelation is a bifid: a form of Hebrew poetry in which the book is split in the middle, both halves telling the same things two different ways and — often — to two different audiences. Isaiah is a bifid. So is Daniel.

        Revelation also contains 2 chiasims. A chiasim is another form of poetry. It is also called the ‘step ladder’ effect. The best example is: “Your ways are not My ways, My ways are not yours.” Revelation contains a chiasim in each half of the book.

        Finally, Hebrew poetry often uses parallelism. The poet will stress the same things over and over in parallel ways, telling us different information about the same things every time. Revelation is filled with parallels. The two different chiasims are parallels, but so are the seals, trumpets and bowls: ALL ARE THE SAME THING TOLD TO DIFFERENT PEOPLES IN DIFFERENT WAYS!

        Once we understand Hebrew poetry, Revelation loses much of its difficulty of understanding. Learn the symbolic language of prophecy on top of that and Revelation actually becomes pretty clear. NO! It does not help us nail down specifics, but it isn’t supposed to. What it does is tell us God’s general story line so that we can look for the patterns and where we are in the timeline of the story.

        Also, when we look, we will find most of Revelation was already given to us in the Old and New Testaments. John is just being used to put it all into proper focus, much the same way Jesus put ‘the Law’ back into proper focus when He spoke to the Pharisees.

        I know this is probably new to you. It was to me, too — when I started. But it is all there in the Scriptures. God’s Word even tells us this — IF we know what to look for, and understand how to read it. Learn to read Scripture as a 1st Century believing Jew and you will find I am not far off the mark. Read Scripture as a 21st Century Christian and you will find you miss the mark quite often. At least, this is how it was for me 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • christinewjc Says:

        Thanks for sharing what you have learned in your studies. I agree that it is important to look at the Jewish ways, culture at the time, meanings of words, and the details of apocalyptic Scriptures. In the past, another fellow Christian and I had a friendly debate and he made the possibility of the mid-trib view very convincing!

        One of the points of debate was how the Church isn’t written about in Revelation after Chapter 3. Several Bible Scholars write that is because the Church was raptured. Another point was the Marriage Supper of the Lamb occurring in heaven while the tribulation was happening on earth. When Jesus returns to rescue Israel and defeat the wicked, believers dressed in white robes accompany him. We both know that this is because all that Jesus needs to do is speak with the sword of His mouth and the enemies will be defeated!

        One of the reasons that the post-tribulation idea isn’t a good one (IMHO) is because the Saints would need to go up to heaven and then immediately come right back down with the Lord. In such a scenario, when would the Marriage Supper occur? Plus, there are Scriptures that support “meet[ing] the Lord in the air” meaning the rapture.

        I think it is good to debate these issues. I can always learn more!

        I will be back posting probably on Wednesday. Meanwhile, thanks my friend for sharing what you have learned from your studies!

        Like

      • Black3Actual Says:

        Christine,

        I have a post scheduled to publish Friday morning. Please try to read it. It is about Hebrew poetry. If we do not understand how Hebrew poetry works, then we will never understand prophecy. Case in point: your friend claims the church is not mentioned in Revelation after chapter 3. He is wrong (not to be rude, just stating a fact). It is mentioned over and over again. It’s just that we do not understand the symbolic language of prophecy, or the structure of Hebrew poetry. Therefore, we miss what would have been crystal clear to the 1st Century believer.

        I have a post up today about the need to understand the ancient Hebrew culture. Then, on Wednesday, I have a post scheduled which will discuss the need to understand the original language of Scripture. These two tie together to answer the question concerning how we would meet the Lord in the air, then immediately follow Him back to earth. There was this thing called ‘apantesis,’ where the people would go out to meet a returning king as he approached the town, then celebrate his return as they accompanied him back into the city. This is exactly what the crowed did when it met Christ as He entered Jerusalem riding on the donkey. The next time He comes, we will do so again, only, this time, we meet Him in the air, in our transformed bodies. Then we return with Him as part of the army of the saints.

        You see, I understand where you are. I WAS ONCE IN THE SAME PEW WITH YOU! 😀 But then I started to actually read Scripture, and I found many — not a few — but many contradictions and inconsistencies in the notion of a rapture, seven year tribulation, return of Christ, thousand year reign, only to have to defeat Satan all over again. Exactly how many times does Satan have to be defeated? You see, there were too many problems with this story line for me, so I started to study — HARD! And as I did, I found other brothers and sisters who had gone before me, and they had explanations for all the very questions you raised (and more). But what they had that the ‘Left Behind” interpretation does not is consistency.

        This is what I want to share with others: an understanding of prophecy that is internally coherent, Christ-centered and consistent. What the Lord has shown me makes ALL of Scripture harmonize — not just prophecy. What’s more, the way it has been shown to me, EVERYTHING points to Christ! And it all works together to build up the faith of the believer. There is no need to worry about identifying specifics in the material world because we can now understand the cyclical pattern in human history. So, yes, we may see a manifestation of prophetic predictions, but we know that it may not be the FINAL manifestation of that prediction. So, if the Lord does not return as we expect, it does not have to weaken our faith. It only affirms that we are not yet at the very end of the story.

        Anyway, I will keep explaining on my blog. I hope you’ll be able to follow my series. I know it is time consuming, but it is necessary. We have a lot to unlearn before we can start to learn to see things ‘The Hebrew Way’ 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • christinewjc Says:

        I will be happy to read it when you post it on Friday!

        Meanwhile, I know I need to catch up on any previous posts at your blog. Will get to that soon!

        Like

  2. GMpilot Says:

    That’s what followers of every religion say, B3A.

    Like

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