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Re: [Covenanted Reformation] Re: Apostles Remembrance of What Christ Looked Like...is Idolatry?

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  • Gary Gearon
    Hi Riley, Not to be rude my friend, but this is not the question that I asked. In regard to your point on the Reformers, from what I recall, a former
    Message 1 of 6 , Apr 23, 2003
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      Hi Riley,

      Not to be rude my friend, but this is not the question that I asked. In
      regard to your point on the Reformers, from what I recall, a former
      Augustinian Monk, and catalyst of the Protestant Reformation, named Dr.
      Martin Luther, allowed for images of Christ in the form of a Crucifix,as
      well as in the nature of Bread and Wine. He also held to what is termed the
      doctrine of Consubstantion (defined below), in which the substance of
      Christ's body and blood is really present in the form of bread and wine.

      "According to it, the substance of Christ's Body exists together with the
      substance of bread, and in like manner the substance of His Blood together
      with the substance of wine. Hence the word Consubstantiation. How the two
      substances can coexist is variously explained. The most subtle theory is
      that, just as God the Son took to Himself a human body without in any way
      destroying its substance, so does He in the Blessed Sacrament assume the
      nature of bread. Hence the theory is also called "Impanation", a term
      founded on the analogy of Incarnation."

      I hope this helps to explain a Reformation Theologian's postion.

      Gary


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    • Dan Fraas
      I understand that wasn t your point, but this is my point. I think your question is irrelevant because we do not have any information of the apostles
      Message 2 of 6 , Apr 24, 2003
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        I understand that wasn't your point, but this is my point. I think
        your question is irrelevant because we do not have any information of
        the apostles' remembrance of Jesus appearance. There is no known
        recorded evidence from those who knew Jesus to describe or illustrate
        His appearance, and so the question of whether or not it is proper
        for us to justify images of Jesus based on the Apostles' recollection
        is irrelevant. We do not have any account of His actual appearance
        and so any image we make will not be instructive, but rather
        misleading. Besides that there is the issue of idolatry. Although
        images are not idolatrous in and of themselves, (as Luther noted)
        they can easily create a stumbling block and a temptation for weaker
        believers to use them in worship (as Calvin noted.) Recall that
        Abraham, Moses, and Jacob saw God incarnate but did not therefore
        presume to make images for worship.

        Riley

        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Gary Gearon"
        <GGearon@p...> wrote:
        > Hi Riley,
        >
        > Not to be rude my friend, but this is not the question that I
        asked. In
        > regard to your point on the Reformers, from what I recall, a former
        > Augustinian Monk, and catalyst of the Protestant Reformation, named
        Dr.
        > Martin Luther, allowed for images of Christ in the form of a
        Crucifix,as
        > well as in the nature of Bread and Wine. He also held to what is
        termed the
        > doctrine of Consubstantion (defined below), in which the substance
        of
        > Christ's body and blood is really present in the form of bread and
        wine.
        >
        > "According to it, the substance of Christ's Body exists together
        with the
        > substance of bread, and in like manner the substance of His Blood
        together
        > with the substance of wine. Hence the word Consubstantiation. How
        the two
        > substances can coexist is variously explained. The most subtle
        theory is
        > that, just as God the Son took to Himself a human body without in
        any way
        > destroying its substance, so does He in the Blessed Sacrament
        assume the
        > nature of bread. Hence the theory is also called "Impanation", a
        term
        > founded on the analogy of Incarnation."
        >
        > I hope this helps to explain a Reformation Theologian's postion.
        >
        > Gary
        >
        >
        > ------------------------------------------------------
        > [This E-mail scanned for viruses by Pike Online, Inc.]
      • Gary Gearon
        Dear Riley, Thank you for your response, although I must respectfully disagree with your view. On the contrary, my friend, there is Scriptural information on
        Message 3 of 6 , Apr 24, 2003
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          Dear Riley,

          Thank you for your response, although I must respectfully disagree with your view. On the contrary, my friend, there is Scriptural
          information on the Apostles recollection of the Lord Jesus. The two men in white apparel said
          to the men of Galilee, that they will see Him coming, as they saw him ascend, in the Scriptures Acts 1:10-11.
           
          And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel;
          "Which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." They do not forget His appearance.

          They will remember how the Lord looked when he went up, and they will recall from memory what he looked like, when he comes down from His
          throne to return to the earth. I am not aware of any verses that state he will change his appearance between then and His return, but I am open to receive whatever you would like to forward to me. Again, please feel free to provide a relevant response to my "irrelevant" (as you call it) question, if you care to.
           
          Please bear in mind, I am not dealing with anyone but the men who saw him, and knew His personal appearance. I am not speaking about people who did not see him literally, such as you and I. Also, this is exploratory on my part.

          In regard to your comment on God being "Incarnate" (Human Flesh), prior to the Holy Spirit's
          fertilizing the Blessed womb of Mary the Mother of God, I am not sure there
          is any support for your view, but I am willing to receive any input you
          would like to provide on this topic.

          In closing, do you hold to the Reformer Luther's or the Reformer Calvin's view on images, or perhaps, would you say that you accept both views, since both are Reformers? Was Luther an idolater, and Calvin not, in your opinion?

          Thanks, Riley, and God's peace to you,

          Gary
           
           

          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Dan Fraas" <fraasrd@...>
          To: <
          covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Thursday, April 24, 2003 10:08 AM
          Subject: [Covenanted Reformation] Re: Apostles Remembrance of What Christ
          Looked Like...is Idolatry?


          > I understand that wasn't your point, but this is my point.  I think
          > your question is irrelevant because we do not have any information of
          > the apostles' remembrance of Jesus appearance.  There is no known
          > recorded evidence from those who knew Jesus to describe or illustrate
          > His appearance, and so the question of whether or not it is proper
          > for us to justify images of Jesus based on the Apostles' recollection
          > is irrelevant.  We do not have any account of His actual appearance
          > and so any image we make will not be instructive, but rather
          > misleading.  Besides that there is the issue of idolatry.  Although
          > images are not idolatrous in and of themselves, (as Luther noted)
          > they can easily create a stumbling block and a temptation for weaker
          > believers to use them in worship (as Calvin noted.)  Recall that
          > Abraham, Moses, and Jacob saw God incarnate but did not therefore
          > presume to make images for worship.
          >
          > Riley
          >
          > --- In
          covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Gary Gearon"
          > <
          GGearon@p...> wrote:
          > > Hi Riley,
          > >
          > > Not to be rude my friend, but this is not the question that I
          > asked. In
          > > regard to your point on the Reformers, from what I recall, a former
          > > Augustinian Monk, and catalyst of the Protestant Reformation, named
          > Dr.
          > > Martin Luther, allowed for images of Christ in the form of a
          > Crucifix,as
          > > well as in the nature of Bread and Wine. He also held to what is
          > termed the
          > > doctrine of Consubstantion (defined below), in which the substance
          > of
          > > Christ's body and blood is really present in the form of bread and
          > wine.
          > >
          > > "According to it, the substance of Christ's Body exists together
          > with the
          > > substance of bread, and in like manner the substance of His Blood
          > together
          > > with the substance of wine. Hence the word Consubstantiation. How
          > the two
          > > substances can coexist is variously explained. The most subtle
          > theory is
          > > that, just as God the Son took to Himself a human body without in
          > any way
          > > destroying its substance, so does He in the Blessed Sacrament
          > assume the
          > > nature of bread. Hence the theory is also called "Impanation", a
          > term
          > > founded on the analogy of Incarnation."
          > >
          > > I hope this helps to explain a Reformation Theologian's postion.
          > >
          > > Gary
          > >
          > >
          > > ------------------------------------------------------
          > > [This E-mail scanned for viruses by Pike Online, Inc.]
          >
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        • Dan Fraas
          Dear brother Gary, As far as your suggestion that the apostles saw Jesus and remembered what He looked like, that is obvious. I would generally go along with
          Message 4 of 6 , Apr 25, 2003
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            Dear brother Gary,

            As far as your suggestion that the apostles saw Jesus and remembered
            what He looked like, that is obvious. I would generally go along
            with your statement that Jesus will not change appearance when He
            returns for His people. Now if you're thinking that we have a
            justification to make images of Jesus because the apostles saw Him
            and didn't forget what He looked like, I don't follow your logic. We
            still don't know what Jesus looked like. Although the apostles
            obviously saw Him, we have no verifiable description or drawing of
            Jesus by those apostles or anyone else who saw Him.

            "In regard to your comment on God being "Incarnate" (Human Flesh),
            prior to the Holy Spirit's
            > fertilizing the Blessed womb of Mary the Mother of God, I am not
            sure there
            > is any support for your view, but I am willing to receive any input
            you
            > would like to provide on this topic."

            There are a few instances in the Old Testament when God appeared in
            human form. (Gen 18:1, 22:25-30; Ex 33:23) Most theologians agree
            that this was none other than Jesus the Messiah. There is an
            excellent article on the subject:

            http://www.reformationonline.com/angel.htm

            "In closing, do you hold to the Reformer Luther's or the Reformer
            Calvin's view on images, or perhaps, would you say that you accept
            both views, since both are Reformers? Was Luther an idolater, and
            Calvin not, in your opinion?"

            I agree with Calvin on images. Like Calvin, I believe they should be
            excluded from houses of worship (and any display in general) so as
            not to create a temptation for weaker brothers to fall into idolatry
            by using the images in worship. I do not believe that Luther was an
            idolater. Luther did not use images in worship, he only had them on
            display and considered them indifferent objects. I agree that they
            are indifferent objects, but I think that prudence requires
            thoughtful Christians to take them down to prevent others from
            sinning.

            For Christ's Crown and Covenant!

            Riley
          • Gary
            Dear Riley, Thank you for your kind and thoughtful reply to my message. When you wrote: Now if you re thinking that we have a justification to make images of
            Message 5 of 6 , Apr 25, 2003
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              Dear Riley,

              Thank you for your kind and thoughtful reply to my message.

              When you wrote:

              "Now if you're thinking that we have a justification to make images
              of Jesus because the apostles saw Him and didn't forget what He
              looked like, I don't follow your logic."

              I have made no mention of that, but only want to know if the
              Reformers considered it idolatry, for the Apostles to think of
              Jesus' actual appearance when they prayed to the Father. From all I
              can tell, they never touched this question, directly. I am wondering
              why...

              In regard to God appearing prior to the Incarnation in Human form,
              my questions is: "was God Incarnate (Human Flesh) back then? Or was
              he in another form? I am studying on this topic, presently.

              Thanks also for your reply to my questions on Calvin and Luther, and
              your thought on images as indifferent. In regard to the sin
              associated with images, I certainly believe that worship of an
              image, in its essence (wood, stone, etc.) is clearly idolatry of
              created matter. It is indifferent otherwise.

              I will check out the article you referenced.

              Thanks, and God's blessings to you,

              Gary




              --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Dan Fraas"
              <fraasrd@y...> wrote:
              > Dear brother Gary,
              >
              > As far as your suggestion that the apostles saw Jesus and
              remembered
              > what He looked like, that is obvious. I would generally go along
              > with your statement that Jesus will not change appearance when He
              > returns for His people. Now if you're thinking that we have a
              > justification to make images of Jesus because the apostles saw Him
              > and didn't forget what He looked like, I don't follow your logic.
              We
              > still don't know what Jesus looked like. Although the apostles
              > obviously saw Him, we have no verifiable description or drawing of
              > Jesus by those apostles or anyone else who saw Him.
              >
              > "In regard to your comment on God being "Incarnate" (Human Flesh),
              > prior to the Holy Spirit's
              > > fertilizing the Blessed womb of Mary the Mother of God, I am not
              > sure there
              > > is any support for your view, but I am willing to receive any
              input
              > you
              > > would like to provide on this topic."
              >
              > There are a few instances in the Old Testament when God appeared
              in
              > human form. (Gen 18:1, 22:25-30; Ex 33:23) Most theologians agree
              > that this was none other than Jesus the Messiah. There is an
              > excellent article on the subject:
              >
              > http://www.reformationonline.com/angel.htm
              >
              > "In closing, do you hold to the Reformer Luther's or the Reformer
              > Calvin's view on images, or perhaps, would you say that you accept
              > both views, since both are Reformers? Was Luther an idolater, and
              > Calvin not, in your opinion?"
              >
              > I agree with Calvin on images. Like Calvin, I believe they should
              be
              > excluded from houses of worship (and any display in general) so as
              > not to create a temptation for weaker brothers to fall into
              idolatry
              > by using the images in worship. I do not believe that Luther was
              an
              > idolater. Luther did not use images in worship, he only had them
              on
              > display and considered them indifferent objects. I agree that
              they
              > are indifferent objects, but I think that prudence requires
              > thoughtful Christians to take them down to prevent others from
              > sinning.
              >
              > For Christ's Crown and Covenant!
              >
              > Riley
            • Dan Fraas
              ... I apologize for the assumption. I don t possibly see how it could have been idolatry for the apostles to think of Jesus appearance as they thought of
              Message 6 of 6 , Apr 29, 2003
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                --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Gary"
                <GGearon@p...> wrote:
                > Dear Riley,
                >
                > Thank you for your kind and thoughtful reply to my message.
                >
                > When you wrote:
                >
                > "Now if you're thinking that we have a justification to make images
                > of Jesus because the apostles saw Him and didn't forget what He
                > looked like, I don't follow your logic."
                >
                > I have made no mention of that, but only want to know if the
                > Reformers considered it idolatry, for the Apostles to think of
                > Jesus' actual appearance when they prayed to the Father. From all I
                > can tell, they never touched this question, directly. I am wondering
                > why...

                I apologize for the assumption. I don't possibly see how it could
                have been idolatry for the apostles to think of Jesus' appearance as
                they thought of Him. I don't see what reason any Reformers would have
                had to comment on the subject, but you never know. They did not
                remember a man-made image, but the true body of God in the flesh.
                That's truth, not idolatry.
                >
                > In regard to God appearing prior to the Incarnation in Human form,
                > my questions is: "was God Incarnate (Human Flesh) back then? Or was
                > he in another form? I am studying on this topic, presently.

                Well He definately appeared as a human. I don't know whether or not
                the flesh was real, but it felt real to Jacob as he wrestled God.
                >
                > Thanks also for your reply to my questions on Calvin and Luther, and
                > your thought on images as indifferent. In regard to the sin
                > associated with images, I certainly believe that worship of an
                > image, in its essence (wood, stone, etc.) is clearly idolatry of
                > created matter. It is indifferent otherwise.

                I agree and I would like to add that very few idolaters mean to
                worship wood and stone. Even pagans intend to worship deities through
                an image, which they regard as a mere representation (consecrated.)
                God makes it clear in His word that He is not to be worshiped through,
                by, or with any use of an image. Images are indifferent in and of
                themselves, but the religious use of images is not an indifferent act.
                It is the definition of idolatry.
                >
                > I will check out the article you referenced.
                >
                > Thanks, and God's blessings to you,
                >
                > Gary
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, "Dan Fraas"
                > <fraasrd@y...> wrote:
                > > Dear brother Gary,
                > >
                > > As far as your suggestion that the apostles saw Jesus and
                > remembered
                > > what He looked like, that is obvious. I would generally go along
                > > with your statement that Jesus will not change appearance when He
                > > returns for His people. Now if you're thinking that we have a
                > > justification to make images of Jesus because the apostles saw Him
                > > and didn't forget what He looked like, I don't follow your logic.
                > We
                > > still don't know what Jesus looked like. Although the apostles
                > > obviously saw Him, we have no verifiable description or drawing of
                > > Jesus by those apostles or anyone else who saw Him.
                > >
                > > "In regard to your comment on God being "Incarnate" (Human Flesh),
                > > prior to the Holy Spirit's
                > > > fertilizing the Blessed womb of Mary the Mother of God, I am not
                > > sure there
                > > > is any support for your view, but I am willing to receive any
                > input
                > > you
                > > > would like to provide on this topic."
                > >
                > > There are a few instances in the Old Testament when God appeared
                > in
                > > human form. (Gen 18:1, 22:25-30; Ex 33:23) Most theologians agree
                > > that this was none other than Jesus the Messiah. There is an
                > > excellent article on the subject:
                > >
                > > http://www.reformationonline.com/angel.htm
                > >
                > > "In closing, do you hold to the Reformer Luther's or the Reformer
                > > Calvin's view on images, or perhaps, would you say that you accept
                > > both views, since both are Reformers? Was Luther an idolater, and
                > > Calvin not, in your opinion?"
                > >
                > > I agree with Calvin on images. Like Calvin, I believe they should
                > be
                > > excluded from houses of worship (and any display in general) so as
                > > not to create a temptation for weaker brothers to fall into
                > idolatry
                > > by using the images in worship. I do not believe that Luther was
                > an
                > > idolater. Luther did not use images in worship, he only had them
                > on
                > > display and considered them indifferent objects. I agree that
                > they
                > > are indifferent objects, but I think that prudence requires
                > > thoughtful Christians to take them down to prevent others from
                > > sinning.
                > >
                > > For Christ's Crown and Covenant!
                >
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