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In the Name of God بسم الله

What if it's true?

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On 7/10/2022 at 7:52 PM, Nad_M said:

Whichever way one translates Matthew's Greek, "most of the crowd" or "a large crowd" ... secular histories of his age. 

Many thanks for the work you have put into this reply!

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If Jesus' kingdom of God had nothing to do with what everyone (including his disciples) understood and anticipated, then he did not need to fear the Romans either and be secretive about his operation

Anyone claiming to be the Jewish Messiah as Jesus did was strung up by the Romans, who weren't detail people on that issue. That's why Jesus had to work in secret.

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What did Jesus' death achieve if sin and death are still plenty today just as they were before the crucifixion?

'Now and not yet' (the clip linked above is short and worth a watch). Jesus will not die again, and after the resurrection neither will anyone else. After the resurrection, there will not be any more sin. A two stage process- stage one Jesus resurrected, the door to no death or sin unlocked. Stage 2, Jesus return and the world renewed.

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That is not apparent from the plain reading.

Jesus was asked about the destruction of the Temple (eg Mark 13:4, and his answer continues using a wonderful mixture of OT references, plain speaking and Jewish apocalyptic language (JAL) through Mark 13:30 “generation” until Mark 13:37. That's the plain reading.

(Otherwise he's answering a question he hasn't been asked...)

You're misreading the JAL as literal text, which it isn't. It uses dramatic images to describe future historical events. For instance, no-one believed the monsters of Daniel would arrive like Dr Who villains, but viewed them as standing for empires. Think Joseph and his dream interpretation here.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51f9uEYGeKw

The fig tree is a metaphor for the unavoidable failure of the Jewish people to fulfil their destiny without God's intervention. Paul's earlier letters suggest he is hoping to be alive when Jesus returns, and later ones he can see it likely won't happen.

It's worth noting that the church fathers seem very relaxed about a 'failed' return. In fact, I would invite you to contrast the aftermath of bar-Kochba with early Christianity.

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Once more, contemporary Jews were expecting the end of the world...in their lifetime,

They really were not. Bar-Kochba and his like were expecting everything to happen in real time on this earth. That's why all the messianic movements looked like rebellions. That's why Judas Maccabeus bothered to cleanse the Temple. Again, don't confuse JAL for literal text.

 

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The event is narrated in Luke22:19 whose writer wasnt even an eyewitness of Jesus' last supper but a disciple of Paul.

And in Matt 26, Mk 14, John 13 and 1 Cor 11 making multiple sources and forms, or a slam dunk to have happened historically, as historians would say.

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the miracles witnessed by thousands that marked Jesus' life and death that should have convinced the most obdurate disbelievers.

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Being Jews, these close followers of Jesus knew that the performance of miracles by an individual, although impressive, are no indication of the truthfulness of his prophethood.

Your second quote hits the nail.

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Christian societies

Post Christian secular societies. Unlike Islam, we're really not geared up for running a nation, more for being suffering underdogs.

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As to persecution by Saul/Paul...equally passes unnoticed in the secular histories of his age.

We don't know what powers he might have had, because we lack the information. Both his letter and Acts confirm his Saul persecution activities, which is talked about as very common knowledge. Persecution of Christians continues to be talked about, both in the NT and outside the HB. Paul's impact wasn't important until Xianity reached a particular size, which took a long time, and in any case it was all about Jesus.

Again, why would Saul seek to destroy early Xianity, if it preached the same Torah repentance that he did? And if Jesus preached Torah repentance, why would Paul, now sworn to be Jesus' follower, switch from Torah repentance to selling some nonsense about the KoG, resurrection and the end of sin/death?

 

 

Thanks again for your reply.

 

 

 

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On 7/11/2022 at 1:17 AM, Eddie Mecca said:

It's not about the numbers, it's about quality of the adherents—“The kingdom of heaven is like yeast that a woman took and mixed into about sixty pounds of flour until it worked all through the dough.” Matthew 13:33—and Galatians 5:9, "A little yeast works through the whole batch of dough."

Thanks for the replies.

I think I must have been unclear in my question, so I'll rephrase. Do Muslims generally see the disciples as people of God who were faithful to Jesus during and after his ministry, or do they see them as rather useless people who failed Jesus?

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One reason why the Ebionites vehemently opposed the theology of Paul was because they suspected that he had had a demoniacal hallucination (i.e. his supposed vision of Christ)

I haven't come across this before. Where did you get this information from?

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There were nuances of difference between them but generally the Ebionites, Nazarenes, Symmachians, and Elkesaites (i.e. Jewish Christianity) believed Jesus was the Messiah, they didn't believe he was the divine Son of God, accepted Jesus as a prophet and an exceptional man in the Davidic line, denied the virgin birth, observed Jewish law, observed the Sabbath, performed baptism and lived poor.

“The Nazarenes” was a name for the Early Christians in general in C1. The Symmachians were a late second century sect, therefore no guide at all to what people thought in the early/mid first century. The Elkesaites also didn't get underway until the second century, and their beliefs were...well let's just say they don't exactly fit with Islam or Xianity...

The Ebionites are a bit more interesting. Unfortunately we have very unreliable information about them, and no-one knows what they actually believed.

The early ones followed something resembling the Gospel of Matthew. It's worth noting that much of Matthew is based on Mark. Therefore all of what I said above about Jesus seeing his main task as starting the Kingdom of God still applies to the early Ebionites.

They regarded James as the successor to Jesus, but the NT has multiple sources and forms that James agreed with Paul on Jesus' resurrection, divinity, KoG beliefs etc. That Paul was allowed by the disciples to preach what he did tells us clearly that the disciples agreed with him.

It may well be that in C1 the Ebionites were orthodox Xians who observed Torah, but their beliefs drifted in C2 and later.

In short, we have very strong historical evidence for what the disciples and Early Church believed in C1 and nothing reliable to the contrary.

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