William Barclay on Hebrews 6:4-6


#117

Any writer, whether inspired or not, can make a mistake. One clear example:

These words quoted by Matthew are not found in Jeremiah. Similar words ARE found in Zechariah 11:12,13.

Some will declare that this is not a mistake, since Matthew wrote that Jeremiah SPOKE these words; he didn’t say that he WROTE them. So it may have been revealed by inspiration to Matthew that Jeremiah SPOKE these words.

However, this will not do. For Matthew almost always said that prophets SPOKE words which in fact, were written in the Hebrew scriptures. Other examples of Matthew doing this are as follows:

Matthew 1:22—2:15,17,23—3:3—4:14—8:17—12:17—13:35—21:4—24:15

I could find only one place in which Matthew wrote “written by the prophet.” That one place is Matthew 2:5


#118

The apostle Matthew wrote:
Then was fulfilled what had been spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him on whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.” (Matthew 27: 9,10 ESV)

These words quoted by Matthew are not found in Jeremiah. Similar words ARE found in Zechariah 11:12,13.

Some will declare that this is not a mistake, since Matthew wrote that Jeremiah SPOKE these words; he didn’t say that he WROTE them. So it may have been revealed by inspiration to Matthew that Jeremiah SPOKE these words.

However, this will not do. For Matthew almost always said that prophets SPOKE words which in fact, were written in the Hebrew scriptures. Other examples of Matthew doing this are as follows:

I don’t think the scriptures are inerrant but i believe they are true. However sometimes since there weren’t books back in the day but scrolls often containing major and minor prophets in the same scrolls, the scroll may have been called Jeremiah but contained Zechariah within it.


#119

That may be so, Steve. Nevertheless, Matthew wrote “spoken by the prophet Jeremiah.” Wouldn’t Matthew have been able to distinguish between the parts of the scroll written by Jeremiah from those parts written by Zechariah? But whether he could or not, Matthew still made an error didn’t he? It’s in the Bible, and apparently God didn’t prevent the error from being recorded there.


#120

Nevertheless, Matthew wrote “spoken by the prophet Jeremiah.” Wouldn’t Matthew have been able to distinguish between the parts of the scroll written by Jeremiah from those parts written by Zechariah? But whether he could or not, Matthew still made an error didn’t he? It’s in the Bible, and apparently God didn’t prevent the error from being recorded there.

It sounds like an error but we are reading this 2,000 years later in a very different culture so it’s not beyond the realm of possibility that Matthew knew but still simply called everything in the Jeremiah scroll as spoken by Jeremiah.


#121

It is only reasonable, logical and common sense to conclude this Steve.

I should also note… the OT examples I gave are NOT Moses but other OT characters… Samuel, Ezekiel etc, all of whom according to Paidion’s assessment like Moses were self-deceived.

Given as Paidion notes, that Matthew himself was prone to error, WHY can’t one arbitrarily, as Paidion does so well with certain OT scripts not to his liking, likewise summarily question for example the likes of Matthew’s recording of Jesus’ ‘sermon on mount’? Like given these things are just arbitrary choices why not hold everything as suspect and carve away accordingly… like let’s not be inconsistent!

Which brings me to this… given that both Paidion and qaz take issue with certain texts and thereby expunge them from the greater text because their literalistic understanding of such is deficient enough to not grasp what might be being said, HOW do they likewise NOT then question and expunge, for example, Paul’s words here…

In kind with the OT texts I’ve already provided here we have God giving Paul a demon, i.e., “a messenger of Satan” — how nice of God. Is this next on the chopping block, can we now even trust Paul that God would do such a thing?

And how brutal of Paul that he would give an diktat to the elders of the church to have a wayward brother be put to death, i.e., “for the destruction of the flesh” — fortunately like all OT victims under similar bans they would ultimately be saved. But given Paul’s harsh and vicious edict can we be certain that he like certain OT characters was not himself running with whatever just popped into his head? Can Paul be trusted?

Hmmm… here again and not dissimilar to what we see with Ezekiel, God sends yet another “strong delusion” — surely Paul is self-deluded and mischaracterising/misrepresenting God! This must be evidence enough to show, at least according to Paidion’s program of scriptural eisegesis, that like Moses, Samuel, Ezekiel et al, that Paul himself is likewise… suspect!!


#122

An explanation of the Matthew 27:9 problem - answersingenesis.org/contradict … -prophets/


#123

Yes James, if one’s basic premise re the Bible is that it contains no errors, it seems that any error can be explained away.

Anyway, I will bring up another error, one that is found the book of Jude:

I happen to possess a copy of the book of Enoch from which this quote was taken. Clearly the book wasn’t written by the historic Enoch “the seventh from Adam” even though it was believed by the early Christians to have been written by him. For example, Tertullian speaks of the author as “the most ancient prophet, Enoch.”

In Enoch 54:9 we read, “The chiefs of the East, among the Parthians and Medes, shall remove kings, in whom a spirit of perturbation shall enter.”
But the Parthians were unknown in history until 250 B.C. They certainly did not exist in the days of Enoch, “the seventh from Adam.”

In Chapter 71, the author describes the rising and setting of the sun, as the sun passing through 6 different gates.

Conclusion: Jude was in error that the author of the words taken from the book of Enoch, was the ancient Enoch, the seventh from Adam.

However, I am sure that those who believe in the inerrancy of the Bible (whichever Bible they mean—Orthodox, Roman Catholic, or Protestant) have explanations that will satisfy themselves. I can guess one of them:

The present book of Enoch is not the one to which Jude referred. For Jude wrote that Enoch prophesied:

The words in the book of Enoch are somewhat different. They read (chapter 2):


#124

Davo, there’s no question you know the Bible very well. And I think a lot of the time you do a great job expounding texts. But what’s the point of scripture if we have no love?

If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing.

Heck, what’s the point of existing if there’s no love? One of the most powerful statements in Talbott’s TILOG (and I’m paraphrasing here) is that love is the only thing that would make living forever worthwhile. I agree. Love for our fellow man (and woman) must be a core part of our identity.


#125

Well yeah of course qaz, who’s gonna disagree with that, and who here doesn’t have love? But that doesn’t answer to the conundrums yours and Don’s position raises in terms of warping the integrity of Scripture when said arguments are taken consistently to their logical ends, i.e., such creates more problems than solves, IMO; that’s all I’m point out. As to inerrancy — I’m inclined to go with Steve’s take given earlier where he said… “I don’t think the scriptures are inerrant but i believe they are true.


#126

It was also about these that Enoch, the seventh from Adam, prophesied, saying, “Behold, the Lord came with ten thousands of his holy ones, to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him.” (Jude 14,15)

I happen to possess a copy of the book of Enoch from which this quote was taken. Clearly the book wasn’t written by the historic Enoch “the seventh from Adam” even though it was believed by the early Christians to have been written by him. For example, Tertullian speaks of the author as “the most ancient prophet, Enoch.”

In Enoch 54:9 we read, “The chiefs of the East, among the Parthians and Medes, shall remove kings, in whom a spirit of perturbation shall enter.”
But the Parthians were unknown in history until 250 B.C. They certainly did not exist in the days of Enoch, “the seventh from Adam.”

In Chapter 71, the author describes the rising and setting of the sun, as the sun passing through 6 different gates.

Conclusion: Jude was in error that the author of the words taken from the book of Enoch, was the ancient Enoch, the seventh from Adam.

How do we know Jude is quoting the book of Enoch? He could be referencing an event that by chance is found in the book of Enoch. Jude simply mentioned that Enoch said this incident happened. Maybe Jude got this info from his brother Jesus or some other oral tradition? But even if Jude took this statement from the Book of Enoch it could still be true even if the book as a whole is unreliable, all he referenced was the statement not the entire book. Paul did this several times, taking true statements from pagan poets. If Jude is guilty why would you let Paul off the hook?


#127

Exactly… and this is the problem slicing and dicing scripture according to presuppositions brought TO the text. Should we likewise question and impugn Jesus because through prophetic recapitulation he applies a prophecy about the times of Antiochus Epiphanes to himself in bringing the warning of future destruction? But to do so would be to not understand the covenants in light of Israel’s HISTORY.

Take for example the prophetic drama of the overthrow of the four beasts Daniel… this was about the transfer of sovereignty to “one like a Son of man” which in its original setting has reference to the circumstances leading to the Maccabean crisis in the 2nd century BC. Jesus, following Jewish apocalyptic tradition has taken this scenario and transposed it to the circumstances of first century Judaism.

The Greek or Western mindset of “prophecy” is that of prediction and fulfillment. The Hebrew idea of prophecy however is that of pattern and recapitulation of patterns i.e., manifold fulfilments leading to the consummate fulfillment or desired goal. Each of these multiple fulfilments becomes a “type” — teaching something further about the ultimate end.

OT prophecy was more than mere predictive foretelling, but more so prescriptive forth-telling, or telling forth the Word of God… often in times of crisis. Certain “events” were foretold, while on other occasions the prophets’ utterance told forth or was instructive of God’s will to be followed, and or their called response to such.

In relation to “events” — prophecies were fulfilled in that OT setting — however, it was not unusual for Jesus to use such past fulfillment as a “type” of whatever it was Jesus was speaking to, and thus it became the “antitype” — take for example Lk 13:3-5. Or for instance, take Matthew’s references of Hosea’s words “Out of Egypt I called my son” as a prophecy concerning Jesus, where in fact Hosea speaks of Israel (Jesus of course being TRUE Israel aka the TRUE vine… hence the link etc of Jn 15:1 and Isa 5:7; Jer 2:21; Psa 80:8-9). Hosea’s words in Matthew’s mind had more than one meaning i.e., application. They meant historically that God had called Israel out of Egypt, and yet also now meant, contemporarily, that the young Jesus was being likewise delivered, being God’s chosen Son, Deliver and Messiah. More than one dimension is present, as is plain to see.

So this isn’t so much a case of “multiple fulfilments” as it was the reapplying of the meaning of such a fulfillment. One way to understand this is Jesus’ words in relation to the Scriptures or old covenant tradition when he said — “you have heard it said… but I say to you…” — Jesus’ reinterpretation or reapplication is the recapitulation of what has gone before — but with a renewed and somewhat “fulfilled” or completed meaning i.e., its ultimate end — and that always in light of the new covenant of which all of old covenant history and story ultimately pointed. And we know that all redemptive history, of which much was expressed through the prophetic, came to fruition and fulfillment in Jesus’ “this generation” timeframe AD30-70; culminating with ‘the Day of the Lord’ circa AD70 with the destruction of the Temple itself.

However, if “prophecy” is just seen in terms of “multiply fulfilments” beyond the biblical narrative then it is only natural to ask… how many times does prophecy get fulfilled before it is actually fulfilled or realised? Such becomes an endless loop according to the next theory or timetable espoused.


#128

The apostle Matthew wrote:
Then was fulfilled what had been spoken by the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him on whom a price had been set by some of the sons of Israel, and they gave them for the potter’s field, as the Lord directed me.” (Matthew 27: 9,10 ESV)

These words quoted by Matthew are not found in Jeremiah. Similar words ARE found in Zechariah 11:12,13.

Actually this is a paraphrase by Matthew and the reference to the potters field could have come from Jeremiah 19. The 30 pieces of silver did come from Zechariah 11 in a somewhat different situation but it is possible Matthew combined the two and just credited the major prophet Jeremiah. This was done in Mark 1 and combining prophecies was done in Mat 21.5.


#129

No one is accusing Jude to be “guilty” of anything. Jude made a mistake. Jude had no idea that some day his letter would be placed in a book that would be regarded as infallible Scripture. And there’s no “hook” off of which to let Paul.

It doesn’t make sense to take the position that a particular collection of writings form “Scripture” which is infallible and without error. If it were true, then those who collected the writings into one infallible book, had to have been infallibly inspired and infallibly guided themselves in order to choose the “right” writings to comprise the Book. And who is to say that the Protestant Bible is the “correct” collection of inspired writings and not the Orthodox Bible or the Roman Catholic Bible?

What is there about the book of Esther in the Protestant Bible (which does not even contain the word “God” or “Yahweh” or “The LORD”) that qualifies it to be one of the infallible writings that are without error? And what is there about the book of Judith, that is also about a heroine who saved the Hebrew people, that renders it fallible and that renders it subject to error? (By the way, the word “God” DOES occur in Esther, in the Orthodox and Roman Catholic Bibles, as does the book of Judith).

As I see it, the “Old Testament” (whether Protestant, Catholic, or Orthodox) is mostly a history of the Hebrew people, and a record of the words of Hebrew prophets. The events recorded therein are substantially true, though the Mosaic interpretation of those events was in some cases false.

The “New Testament” is mostly a collection of the letters of the apostle Paul, as well as other apostles, and of course, it contains the four memoirs of Christ which are true histories of the acts and sayings of Jesus the Son of God, as remembered by Matthew and John, and from the information that Mark received from Peter, and as Luke received from Paul (I’m not sure of Paul’s source).Then, of course, there is the history of the Church that Luke wrote, called “The Acts of the Apostles.” Some of that Luke knew first hand; other parts were obtained from Paul.

When we went to elementary school, we were exposed to history. We learned about Christopher Columbus, Marco Polo, etc. and we believed that the events of which we learned actually took place. But the history books were not infallible. Some of what was written were interpretations of events.


#130

Steve 7150 wrote:
If Jude is guilty why would you let Paul off the hook?

No one is accusing Jude to be “guilty” of anything. Jude made a mistake. Jude had no idea that some day his letter would be placed in a book that would be regarded as infallible Scripture. And there’s no “hook” off of which to let Paul.

It doesn’t make sense to take the position that a particular collection of writings form “Scripture” which is infallible and without error.

You were accusing Jude of being guilty of making a mistake and i tried to make a comparison to Paul also quoting pagan sources but still making a true statement. My point was that although Jude may have quoted Enoch , it still could have been a true statement.
Additionally i had explicitly said that i don’t consider scripture infallible but i do consider it true. However although i don’t consider it infallible i will try to defend it if possible against criticism.


#131

Paidion said:

Please correct me if I am wrong, but it seems like you take these writings with a grain of sand… I guess I might ask where you stand on the authority of the bible as we have in now, and if you think that anything contained in them is worth studying and following in this present time? AND CAN WHAT IS CONTAINED IN IT CHANGE OUR LIFE HERE IN 2017? :confused:


#132

Where do YOU stand on the authority of the Bible? And which Bible? Orthodox, Catholic, or Protestant? And why do you choose the one you do as authoritative rather than the other two?

I have already explained that I accept the historicity of the events described in the Bible, but I do not subscribe to Bibliolatry. My authority is Jesus, the Anointed One—the Son of God. I accept everything He taught, and receive His law as the authority in my life. I believe the four memoirs of Christ accurately describe His life here on earth and are reliable records of His teaching.


#133

Jesus…

Paidion…

Did Jesus slice and dice the Scriptures? Bah humbug Paidion!


#134

Well I would use this opportunity to say that many folks that say they believe the scriptures usually :

  1. believe the scriptures as someone else has told them what they mean…
  2. believe the scriptures as they read them (in their own language)
  3. read the scriptures and for whatever reason say that there may be more to the story… And thus they start a life long search. :confused:
    I would say that you are going the extra mile and searching for truth… You have learned Greek :smiley: and thus you have an advantage :angry:
    But the advantage is only as good or appropriate as the Spirit that guides you. :wink:

#135

Thank you for replying, Chad. It’s difficult or maybe impossible to determine who is led by the Spirit and who is not. We know only ourselves and our relationship with God.

As for the concept of the infallibility and flawlessness of the Bible—in particular the Old Testament—it is clear that Jesus Himself read it selectively. He knew that Moses and some of the prophets unintentionally wrote about HIM. But we need to notice also, that He never quoted the parts of the Hebrew Scriptures that depicted the Father as a killer of people or of One who commanded the extermination of nations including children, or who required the stoning of disrespectful sons, etc. Rather He depicted His Father as one who is kind even to evil people (Luke 6:35). So who you gonna believe concerning the Father’s character? Moses or Jesus? Were the Canaanites whom the Israelites wiped out even evil? Or did the Canaanites simple wish to go on living in their own land? Were they wiped out simply so that the Israelites could possess their land?

In introducing His New Law in Matthew 5, Jesus contrasted His commands with those of the Mosaic Law. He didn’t say that the Old commands were given by God, or even by Moses. Rather He said, “You have heard that it was said to those of old… but I tell you…” Then He gave commands, some of which contrasted to the old, and others which were even more exacting.

Again, I suggest that you read Dr. Bob Wilson’s article: "Reading the Bible Like Jesus did:

[Reading the Bible Like Jesus Did)

Here a couple of other articles on the same topic:

huffingtonpost.com/pete-enns/3-ways-jesus-read-the-bib_b_5902534.html

therebelgod.com/2017/05/how-to-read-bible-like-jesus-and-paul.html

And on Amazon you can read part of Derek Flood’s book, “Disarming Scripture”:

amazon.com/Disarming-Scripture-Cherry-Picking-Violence-Loving-Conservatives/dp/0692307265


#136

Thanks, Don. That Derek Flood book looks promising - I read the forward by Brian MacLaren and then hit the ‘surprise me’ button for a random page from the book (on Amazon) and this came up, which I resonate with: