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Christians

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Elu Thingol

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Your arguments had me vexed Thorin, and I had never thought of Samuel as being a demon. So being extremely curious I took the time to look through papers, essays, and other things relating to the subject. The essay I found, that I think sums up what most scholars are saying about the subject comes from a Bible difficulties dictionary in the Zondervan dictionary. It reads:


What took place in 1 Samuel 28:8-16? Did Samuel really appear to Saul? Did Saul actually talk with him in the witch’s cave?

There is little doubt that satanic powers are able to produce illusionary images and communicate with the living by this means. Such “lying wonders” (2 Thess. 2:9) are part of the Devil’s stock in trade. On the other hand, it certainly lies within God’s power as well to present an appearance for the purpose of conveying His message by a special revelation.

The oracle delivered by this shade or apparition sounded like an authentic message from God, with its announcement of doom on the guilty, unfaithful king. It even sounded like something Samuel himself would have said, had he remained alive after the massacre of Ahimelech and the priests of Nob (1 Sam. 22:11-19). Therefore it is entirely possible that this apparition was the actual shade of Samuel himself, when he asked, “Why has thou disquieted me, to bring me up?” Apparently Samuel had been directed by God to leave his abode in Sheol or Hades (where even the saved believers awaited the future resurrection of Christ, which would bring about their transferal to heaven itself) in order to deliver this final message to King Saul. Conceivably the deceased Samuel could have communicated long distance through an apparition in the cave of Endor, but the words “to bring me up” make this very doubtful.

On the other hand, it should be observed that the witch herself was quite startled by this ghostly visitor, as she said, “I see a god [Heb. ‘elohim] coming up out of the earth” (v.13). This clearly implies that this authentic appearance of the dead (if such it was) was no result of her own witchcraft; rather, it was an act of God Himself that terrified her and that she had in no sense brought about in her own power. It would seem that God chose this particular occasion and setting to give His final word to the evil king who had once served His cause with courage and zeal. No scriptural basis for spiritism is furnished by this episode, nor for necromancy—both of which are sternly condemned as abominations before the Lord (Deut. 18:9-12; cf. Exod. 22:18; Lev. 19:26,31; 20:6,27; Jer. 27:9-10).(Archer)
 

Thorin

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Well, the above arguments sound somewhat plausible. Direct intervention by God? Possible. However what you have is God working directly with and through a witch, an agent of the devil. God collaborating with the very thing He vehemently condemns? Doesn't sound right to me.

The point I am trying to make, and which your article never supports either, is that the spirit was not Samuel's spirit on its own merit. You can't just take one verse and base your theology around it. You must let scripture interpret scripture. Hebrew theology shows that that Sheol was the abode of all dead. English translates this as hell, but that is not accurate. There was no consciousness in Sheol.

Scriptures do not support what seems to be in 1 Samuel. I still stand by the demonic angle. You don't think even Satan's agents can be surprised by what or whom Satan impersonates?
 

morning star

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Originally posted by Amichi


See, I was going to stay out of this discussion, too...

The fact is, Christianity is nothing more than a composite religion formed on the bones of many an old religion. Contrary to popular belief, Christianity is a relatively new religion, spawned from a tribal religion of the jewish people. Yaweh... or God, if you prefer... was nothing more than one of many tribal gods. Over time, the religion adjusted to make him the prime god.

On the same token, Christians borrowed from the old Norse religions, the Egyptian religion, old Judaism, Greek Mythology.. you name it, elements were borrowed.

Were they? What if They borrowed from Christianity? Instead of Christianity borrowing from them?

I believe the borrowed from Christianity.
 

Amichi

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Were they? What if They borrowed from Christianity? Instead of Christianity borrowing from them?

I believe they borrowed from Christianity.
You may believe what you wish, but the facts don't back you up, here. As a couple of examples.. Christmas is an old Pagan holiday, Easter was founded around the Spring Equinox.. a very old traditional day for rebirth. It is a well known fact that Christianity ursurped these holidays to spread their own religion more effectively. I applaud the shrewd marketing, there, but I must frown on the current insistence that they founded the holidays themselves.
 

HLGStrider

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check a few post pages back... we've already discussed Trees and Christmas.

Christmas was I believe made to combat that holiday. There was a big Roman celebration at that time of year which was quite an orgy. The general excitement of it made the abstaining Christians look quite boring, so they started their own. It was a bit of marketing, but they didn't directly take the holiday away.

Easter you are wrong on. This is the only Biblical date we can be sure of (for instance it is nearly impossible to believe that Jesus was born on Dec. 25th) but Easter coincides with the end of an already in place Jewish Holiday known as Passover. This cannot be denied. I do not doubt that some easter traditions may not be of a pure Christian back ground (The big pink rabbit for instance), but Easter is. Passover is an old tradition based on the Exodus story, I believe. We did not steal this from the Equinox idea, and they fall close together only on coincidence. (Passover hardly resembles pagan Equinox celebrations).
 

Amichi

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Please, then, explain to me why Easter falls on the first Sunday after the first full moon after the spring Equinox? It seems to me that it ought be on.. I dunno... the day that Jesus was arisen, or something?

It seems very pagan to me.. and the general concept of rebirth is the same, is it not?
 

HLGStrider

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Origenally at least it was the end of passover, and it was this year for sure. Probably, having no idea of the date their ancestors were rescued, the jewish people chose this date because it does have astronomical significance. It was the day he arose because he was killed at the end of the Passover on a Friday and arose on Sunday. If you are doing the three day argument the Jewish people count every day even if he was only dead a few hours of it. He died Friday was dead all Thursday and a little of Sunday. In their counting that is three days.

The concept of rebirth is natural and does normally coincide with the begining of Spring. (The Pandora type of thing)... Personally, while I can think of rebirth in natural terms, I can think of no myth at the time where someone actually comes back from the dead... I'm sure there are some, but my mythology is failing me right now... urg..

The idea being that Jesus defeated all death, conquered it, and became something greater than it. He wasn't reborn in the same way. He was reborn greater.

Now coming back to life after death is a dream all men have. However, there is only one who does it. It isn't a pagan idea unless you count the Jews as Pagans. They had been predicting this for years in all the books of prophesy.

A big difference is that Jesus actually existed, as documented by at least two historians at the time.
 

Amichi

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*chuckle*

I think that anyone who believe in reincarnation would argue that only one person has done it.. and they might request proof besides.
 

HLGStrider

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Since I don't believe in reincarnation that provides no hangups for me... however, that is a totally different type of rebirth. I'm not enough of a theologian to describe the difference, however. Reincarnation is not coming back in your old form but more powerful. It is actually being reborn as someone else on this earth. Being reborn as a Christian is also different, it is actually having Christ inplanted, or born, inside of you. Both cases are highly different.

Your call.
I hope you enjoy the moon, Arathin. It has been rather large lately...
 

e.Blackstar

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Hello. I am a Christian (yay) and I am just here to say hi and if another debate starts heating up I'll be back to comment.
 

Tar-Elenion

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Treyar, I think you need to fix whatever you are doing to cause your posts to keep extending of the side of the page (unless it is just my computer).
 

joxy

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Yes, it's already been irritating in another thread.
See if the system will let you spread it over two lines, and if not then cut it down.
 
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