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Lawfulness of theater (The Act, Declaration & Testimony in error?)

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  • Thomas Britton
    I found this in Thomas Watson s Sermons on the Ten Commandments: Idolatry is devil worship, Ezek 20:27,31. They sacrificed unto devils, not to God; to new
    Message 1 of 3 , Jan 1, 2004
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      I found this in Thomas Watson's Sermons on the Ten Commandments:
       
       "Idolatry is devil worship, Ezek 20:27,31. 'They sacrificed unto devils, not to God; to new gods,' Deut 32: 17. These new gods were old devils. 'And they shall no more offer their sacrifices unto devils,' Lev 17: 7. The Hebrew word La-sairim, is the hairy ones, because the devils were hairy, and appeared in the forms of satyrs and goats."
       
      Now, allow me quote a few things posted last March (post # 7990), and empasize a few things:

      The first "tragedies" were myths which were danced and sung by a "chorus" at festivals in honour of Dionysius (God of Wine). At first these festivals were of a "satyric" nature (gaiety, drinking, burlesque, etc)... As time passed the sung and danced myths developed a more serious form. Instead of gaiety and burlesque the "plays" now dealt with the relationship of man and the "Gods", and tried to illustrate some particular lesson of life.The chorus dressed in goat skins because the goat was sacred to Dionysius and goats were "prizes" which were awarded for the best plays. Therefore, the word tragedy is believed to be derived from the Greek word "tragoidia" which means "goat-song".  http://www.stemnet.nf.ca/~hblake/tragedy1.html
       
      Who is Dionysius?
       
      DIONYSIUS (Roman=Bacchus) God of religious ecstasy and wine, accompanied always by satyrs and nymphs. The force of life in all growing things. Dionysius is the Greek form of Thracian and Phrygian deities of vegetation and fetility, who followers worked themselves into a frenzy and ritually tore apart their god in the form of a goat, a bull or a man. The cult survived the introduction of the Olympian gods and proved so popular that it finally had to be accepted by the Dorian Greeks. In the dark age which followed the decline of the Myceneans, the cult of Dionysius spread rapidly, especially among women. His followers were known as maenads (mad women) and it was best not to be near when their frenzy came upon them. Animals, and sometimes people, were torn apart and sometimes eaten in the belief that they were devouring the god himself. Drunk, lawless and noisy, not terribly impressed by authority or convention, the followers of Dionysius were often unwelcome. His worshippers danced wildly, and his rites were designed to cleanse men of lowly irrational emotions and desires. http://www.witchesway.net/links/goddesses/greek.html see also http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dionysus

      The reference about Dionysius� companions, the satyrs and nymphs, is here:
       
       
      A description of the Maenads:
       "Maenads (also Bacchae and Bacchantes) were female worshippers of Bacchus , the Greek god of mystery, wine and intoxication. The word literally translates as "raving ones". They were known as wild, insane women who could not be reasoned with. The mysteries of Bacchus inspired the women to ecstatic frenzy; they indulged in copious amounts of violence, bloodletting, sex and self-intoxication and mutilation. They were usually pictured as crowned with vine leaves, clothed in fawnskins and carrying the thyrsus, and dancing with the wild abandonment of complete union with primeval nature." http://www.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maenads

       

      So, was the Reformed Presbytery in error on Theater Attendance?

       

      "But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils. Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils. Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?" 1 Corinthians 10:20-22.
       
       
      -TdB


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    • thebishopsdoom
      ... devils, not to God; to new gods, Deut 32: 17. These new gods were old devils. And they shall no more offer their sacrifices unto devils, Lev 17: 7. The
      Message 2 of 3 , Jan 1, 2004
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        --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, Thomas Britton
        <bander1643@y...> wrote:
        > I found this in Thomas Watson's Sermons on the Ten Commandments:
        >
        > "Idolatry is devil worship, Ezek 20:27,31. 'They sacrificed unto
        devils, not to God; to new gods,' Deut 32: 17. These new gods were
        old devils. 'And they shall no more offer their sacrifices unto
        devils,' Lev 17: 7. The Hebrew word La-sairim, is the hairy ones,
        because the devils were hairy, and appeared in the forms of satyrs
        and goats."
        >
        > Now, allow me quote a few things posted last March (post # 7990),
        and empasize a few things:
        >
        > The first "tragedies" were myths which were danced and sung by
        a "chorus" at festivals in honour of Dionysius (God of Wine). [snip]

        Bander,
        a few questions to help clarify your ideas.
        Which of the following propositions would you agree with:

        1. Acting is in itself intrinsically and formally an act of devil
        worship
        2. All things originating from influence or ideas of pagans /
        heretics are inherently formally and always pagan / heretical
        3. Acting is not formally devil worship, but is inherently sinful
        4. Acting is not pagan per se, but doing it or viewing it for
        entertainment is inherently pagan
        5. Theatrical entertainments have historically from their roots been
        a social influence that has been supported by pagans and immoral
        persons but generally opposed by philosophers and theologians over a
        demoralizing and "lowest common denominator" effect the theatre was
        seen to have had over time on cultures in general and on actors
        acting out these things in particular.

        If you agree with any of the propositions 1-4, it would probably be
        helpful to clarify how you would define the term "acting" and whether
        or how you distinguish it from children playing house or with toys,
        police / military / emergency training scenarios, or historical re-
        enactments for educational purposes.
        -doom
      • puritanone
        You raise some good questions. Some of these are addressed at the Movie Review Section of Puritan News Weekly at: http://www.puritans.net/moviereviews.html
        Message 3 of 3 , Jan 2, 2004
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          You raise some good questions. Some of these are addressed at the
          Movie Review Section of Puritan News Weekly at:

          http://www.puritans.net/moviereviews.html

          Let me **briefly** give my views on them below:

          --- In covenantedreformationclub@yahoogroups.com, thebishopsdoom
          > 1. Acting is in itself intrinsically and formally an act of devil
          > worship

          no


          > 2. All things originating from influence or ideas of pagans /
          > heretics are inherently formally and always pagan / heretical

          no


          > 3. Acting is not formally devil worship, but is inherently sinful

          yes


          > 4. Acting is not pagan per se, but doing it or viewing it for
          > entertainment is inherently pagan

          It is sinful to be a stage-actor ("hypocrite"), and thus it is sinful
          to be entertained by stage-actors.


          >
          > If you agree with any of the propositions 1-4, it would probably be
          > helpful to clarify how you would define the term "acting" and
          whether
          > or how you distinguish it from children playing house or with toys,
          > police / military / emergency training scenarios, or historical re-
          > enactments for educational purposes.

          I do not think it is wholesome for children to play "cops and
          robbers" or "Roundheads versus Cavaliers", because someone has to
          imitate the wicked, which is not good.

          With regards to some other things you mention, there is a clear
          distinction between practicing something (e.g., in emergency fire
          drills) and stage-acting. Practicing a skill is not only acceptable,
          it is prudent.

          - Parnell McCarter
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