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Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism

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  • Roger Clough
    Jim R, I wasn t aware that Denmark s Lutheranism was different from Germany s. Maybe it was just what happened to a lot of Lutheranism after his death--
    Message 1 of 18 , Apr 1, 2008
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      Jim R,
       
      I wasn't aware that Denmark's Lutheranism was different
      from Germany's. Maybe it was just what happened to a lot of
      Lutheranism after his death-- watering down.Luther was aware
      of this tendency before he died and felt he had failed.
       
      I try to directly follow Luther, as I am a MIssouri Synod Lutheran.
      Formerly I was with ELCA, the more liberal branch. My former
      ELCA church knew almost nothing about Luther. They featured
      "Leadership Training", for example, which I rebelled at even
      though I had not yet studied Luther.
       
      - Roger 
       
       
      ----- Original Message -----
      Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2008 1:18 PM
      Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism

      Roger --

      I'm not sure that Evangelical Christianity has a uniform opinion of
      anxiety/dread and its sources, but I think we should note distinctions
      between Luther, Lutheranism in general, and the Evangelical
      Lutheranism comprising Denmark's state church. K was a critic of
      Evangelical Lutheranism by being a critic of Denmark's state church.
      I agree with you that K seems far more like an Arminian than a
      Lutheran (who strictly follows Luther) to me. Most Lutheranism is
      modified and watered-down Luther, however. I'm not sure where
      Denmark's state church stood specifically in relationship to
      predestination, but something like that seems to have produced a great
      deal of complacency in K's Denmark in K's opinion.

      Jim R


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    • Donald Anderson
      ... I wasn t either, and there was no substantial difference then, Evangelical was the official name of the early Lutheran Church and may still be in many
      Message 2 of 18 , Apr 1, 2008
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        Roger, you said:

        > I wasn't aware that Denmark's Lutheranism was different
        > from Germany's.

        I wasn't either, and there was no substantial difference then, Evangelical was the official name of the early Lutheran Church and may still be in many cases. This was the name that Luther approved of and wanted. The Lutheran Church was the popular name that stuck however, so that mostly the Lutheran Church became officially known in most places as "The Evangelical Lutheran Church." In the time of K as it mostly is today both Denmark and Germany's Lutheran Church has 'evangelical' in its official name. I dpn't know what distinctions JR is talking about.

        Don the Beachcomber


         

      • James Rovira
        If anyone could read this prior post of mine:
        Message 3 of 18 , Apr 2, 2008
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          If anyone could read this prior post of mine:

          <<Roger --

          I'm not sure that Evangelical Christianity has a uniform opinion of
          anxiety/dread and its sources, but I think we should note distinctions
          between Luther, Lutheranism in general, and the Evangelical
          Lutheranism comprising Denmark's state church. K was a critic of
          Evangelical Lutheranism by being a critic of Denmark's state church.
          I agree with you that K seems far more like an Arminian than a
          Lutheran (who strictly follows Luther) to me. Most Lutheranism is
          modified and watered-down Luther, however. I'm not sure where
          Denmark's state church stood specifically in relationship to
          predestination, but something like that seems to have produced a great
          deal of complacency in K's Denmark in K's opinion.

          Jim R>>

          And tell me where I make a sharp distinction between German
          Lutheranism and Danish Lutheranism, I'd appreciate it. I do
          distinguish between "Lutheranism in general" and "Danish Lutheranism,"
          "Lutheranism in general" referring to all Lutheran churches from
          Luther's time to the present, in all places -- so it includes but is
          not limited to German Lutheranism. Danish Lutheranism was
          specifically characterized by a strong influence from Hegel among the
          up and coming leadership in K's lifetime.

          Jim R
        • Donald Anderson
          Roger you wrote: Luther s theology says ... Does `worldly affairs mean trivial affairs? How far does this go in choice? Where is the dividing line, between
          Message 4 of 18 , Apr 7, 2008
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            Roger you wrote:

            Luther's theology says

            > that there is only free choice in worldly affairs (such as what
            > am I going to eat for lunch ?).

            Does `worldly affairs' mean trivial affairs? How far does this go in choice? Where is the dividing line, between choice and what is determined by the Holy Spirit. For example, suppose a man murdered his children and his wife. Was that his free choice or is it determined by the Holy Spirit? Does every event have to have a determinate cause?

             

            May I also ask you what Kierkegaard books or excerpts of his work or secondary works you have read? I believe that in previous posts you have said that you have read Robinson and Zarate's Introducing Kierkegaard and Palmer's Kierkegaard for Beginners. These are both good books for beginners in the study of K but are limited in scope. I like Palmer the best perhaps because it is one of the first books I read on K when I began my serious study about 7 or 8 years ago. Robinson and Zarate is, in my estimation, more difficult. Both of them oversimplify and, again in my opinion, get several things absolutely wrong perhaps because of the oversimplifications. Feel free to quote these in our discussions as I have them both. Others?

             

            Mahalo (thank you),

            Don

            --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Roger Clough" <rclough@...> wrote:
            >
            > Kierkegard was at best an unorthodox Lutheran, essentially an
            > Arminian, since he believed in choice. Luther's theology says
            > that there is only free choice in worldly affairs (such as what
            > am I going to eat for lunch ?). The Holy Spirit makies the choices
            > for us. I don't know exactly how that appears to us and am still
            > trying to figure it out.
            >
            > An evangelical such as I would say that the dread that
            > Kierkegaard experienced was the work of the Devil to prevent
            > K from ever choosing to free himself (if that was even possible).
            >
            > - Roger C
            >
            >
            > ----- Original Message -----
            > From: James Rovira
            > To: kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com
            > Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2008 2:31 AM
            > Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism
            >
            >
            > Don, do you have any support for this claim at all?
            >
            > > However, To say that his was a total rejection of
            > > the Luther/Calvin doctrine of predestination is going too far. K's
            > > introduction to predestination was through his study of Schleiermacher's
            > > dogmatics and not from direct exposure to Luther or to Calvin on this
            > > subject.
            >
            > Especially since K directly quoted Luther more than once?
            >
            > Jim R
            >
            >
            >
            >
            >
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          • Donald Anderson
            Yes, see: http://www.nancyanddon.com/mydiary/id4.html Don ... Schleiermacher s ... this
            Message 5 of 18 , Apr 7, 2008
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              Yes, see:

              http://www.nancyanddon.com/mydiary/id4.html

              Don

              --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "James Rovira" <jamesrovira@...> wrote:
              >
              > Don, do you have any support for this claim at all?
              >
              > > However, To say that his was a total rejection of
              > > the Luther/Calvin doctrine of predestination is going too far. K's
              > > introduction to predestination was through his study of Schleiermacher's
              > > dogmatics and not from direct exposure to Luther or to Calvin on this
              > > subject.
              >
              > Especially since K directly quoted Luther more than once?
              >
              > Jim R
              >

            • James Rovira
              Don: thanks much. The information you post on that page is very useful. I don t think it supports your point, however. It does support the idea that K did
              Message 6 of 18 , Apr 7, 2008
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                Don: thanks much. The information you post on that page is very
                useful. I don't think it supports your point, however. It does
                support the idea that K did learn of one version of predestination
                through Schleiermacher. It does not offer any evidence that K did not
                read Luther or Calvin for himself, however. K quotes from The
                Smalcald Articles in Concept of Anxiety, for example, which is solid
                evidence that K read at least that much of Luther. And if he read
                that much of Luther, he probably read much more.

                I completely disagree with this reading of the quoted passage in
                Concept of Anxiety:

                <<This primary concept of predestination expressed in I A 295 is found
                again in the works, including The Concept of Anxiety [Dread], pp. 55
                f., where Vigilius Haufniensis declares: "sin presupposes itself, not
                of course before it is posited (that would be predestination) .... "
                This means that a person first appears as sinner in his meeting
                Christ, but at the same time he manifests whether he is destined for
                salvation or for perdition, depending on whether he accepts God's
                offer of grace or rejects it.>>

                Haufniensis says that sin cannot presuppose itself before it is
                posited -because- that would imply predestination, for one thing.
                This statement is predicated upon a rejection of predestination and
                doesn't appear to make distinctions between different "kinds" of
                predestination -- distinctions which, honestly, sound like the
                hair-splitting sophistry Martensen accused Kierkegaard of (the fact
                that K responded this way to the doctrine of predestination implies a
                great deal of discomfort with the doctrine itself).

                Furthermore, Haufniensis's argument throughout CA needs to
                simultaneously affirm God's freedom, human freedom, and the fact that
                sin is heterogeneous with creation (I have already posted quotations
                to that effect). If sin were to presuppose itself before it is
                posited by any one individual, it would exist independently of the
                deciding individual and would therefore be a part of creation, not
                separate from it -- making God the author of sin. Haufniensis claims
                that ethics rejects this possibility because it is blasphemous (I
                believe that was one of my quotations).

                Sin presupposes itself -once it is posited-: in other words, it does
                not exist for the individual until the individual considers it as a
                possibility. Once the individual has done so, however, the individual
                has sinned -- or better, the individual can only do so after the
                individual has sinned. The distinctions between sin and guilt in
                Climacus is not shared by Haufniensis that I can recall, and are
                psychological realities: since both Haufniensis and Climacus believe
                that God exists, both must believe that sin is always sin in God's
                eyes even if we only understand it as guilt before becoming a
                Christian.

                At any rate, "sin presupposing itself only once it has been posited"
                is the inverse of the truth that we don't know that we are innocent
                until we have lost our innocence -- so that we only know innocence
                retrospectively. Sin in Haufniensis (and in K I suspect), as in
                Augustine, is not a "thing" that exists in the world, but a
                misrelation between otherwise inherently good things. This
                misrelation as Haufniensis understands it is specifically
                psychological -- or, perhaps I should say, Haufniensis is primarily
                concerned with the psychological manifestations of the spiritual (self
                to self and self to God) misrelation that is sin.

                Jim R
              • Donald Anderson
                JR, perhaps you missed the point that K s study of Schleiremaker came early in his career. He was still a student of theology in 1834. I have never said that
                Message 7 of 18 , Apr 8, 2008
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                  JR, perhaps you missed the point that K's study of Schleiremaker came early in his career. He was still a student of theology in 1834. I have never said that he did not read a lot of Lutheran theology, especially the Creeds and Confessions of Luther. The Smallcald Articles were no doubt ubiquitous in his home and certainly at school.  He had to have memorized them in order to graduate. The same goes for a lot of other Lutheran doctrine and theology. His Father and friends were constatly discussing it while little Soren listened in. The following quote shows that K himself said in 1847 that he had never really read Luther until then. He was surprised at some of the things he found.

                  «2463

                  Wonderful! The category "for you" (subjectivity, inwardness) with which Either/Or concludes (only the truth which builds up [opbygger] is truth for you) is Luther's own. I have never really read anything by Luther. But now I open up his sermons –and right there in the Gospel for the First Sunday in Advent he says "for you," on this everything depends (see second page, first column, and first page, fourth column). VII A 541   1847

                   

                  So K started reading Luther in or about 1847, rather late in his career. He  had already written most of his pseudonymous works including CA, CUP was published the year before. K seems to have read mostly from a book of sermons he accquired at about that time. There is no evidence he read anything else from Luther first hand. He was, no doubt working on WL when he began reading and there is strong evidence of this in WL.

                   

                  Don

                   

                • Roger Clough
                  Don, Luther doesn t go into any detail, he just says wordly affairs , as if a passing thought, but most people consider it to be any affairs that have
                  Message 8 of 18 , Apr 8, 2008
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                    Don,
                     
                    Luther doesn't go into any detail, he just says "wordly affairs",
                    as if a passing thought, but most people  consider it to
                    be any affairs that have nothing to do with salvation or damnation.
                     
                    As to determinant cause, some things are determined, others not.
                     
                    The Holy Spirit only operates to help save us and is present if we
                    have faith. But having faith requires the HS, so that its action
                    seems to me to be an infinite regress if it is just you you
                    are considering. However, Luther says somewhere I think that
                    it comes from hearing the Word as in listening to a Bible reading
                    or sermon. 
                     
                    I must have two dozen books on and by K, mostly by. Yes,
                    Palmer is the better of the pair.  The other day I read K in 90 minutes,
                    which nicely integrates his life and work.  I suffer from depression
                    these days while getting medicine adjusted, so reading K can be
                    unhealthy for me right now. I started to read Sickness Unto Death.
                    He certainly knows depression.
                     
                    - Roger 
                     
                     
                    ----- Original Message -----
                    Sent: Monday, April 07, 2008 8:06 PM
                    Subject: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism

                    Roger you wrote:

                    Luther's theology says
                    > that there is only free choice in worldly affairs (such as what
                    > am I going to eat for lunch ?).

                    Does `worldly affairs' mean trivial affairs? How far does this go in choice? Where is the dividing line, between choice and what is determined by the Holy Spirit. For example, suppose a man murdered his children and his wife. Was that his free choice or is it determined by the Holy Spirit? Does every event have to have a determinate cause?

                     

                    May I also ask you what Kierkegaard books or excerpts of his work or secondary works you have read? I believe that in previous posts you have said that you have read Robinson and Zarate's Introducing Kierkegaard and Palmer's Kierkegaard for Beginners. These are both good books for beginners in the study of K but are limited in scope. I like Palmer the best perhaps because it is one of the first books I read on K when I began my serious study about 7 or 8 years ago. Robinson and Zarate is, in my estimation, more difficult. Both of them oversimplify and, again in my opinion, get several things absolutely wrong perhaps because of the oversimplifications . Feel free to quote these in our discussions as I have them both. Others?

                     

                    Mahalo (thank you),

                    Don

                    --- In kierkegaardians@ yahoogroups. com, "Roger Clough" <rclough@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > Kierkegard was at best an unorthodox Lutheran, essentially an
                    > Arminian, since he believed in choice. Luther's theology says
                    > that there is only free choice in worldly affairs (such as what
                    > am I going to eat for lunch ?). The Holy Spirit makies the choices
                    > for us. I don't know exactly how that appears to us and am still
                    > trying to figure it out.
                    >
                    > An evangelical such as I would say that the dread that
                    > Kierkegaard experienced was the work of the Devil to prevent
                    > K from ever choosing to free himself (if that was even possible).
                    >
                    > - Roger C
                    >
                    >
                    > ----- Original Message -----
                    > From: James Rovira
                    > To: kierkegaardians@ yahoogroups. com
                    > Sent: Thursday, March 27, 2008 2:31 AM
                    > Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism
                    >
                    >
                    > Don, do you have any support for this claim at all?
                    >
                    > > However, To say that his was a total rejection of
                    > > the Luther/Calvin doctrine of predestination is going too far. K's
                    > > introduction to predestination was through his study of Schleiermacher' s
                    > > dogmatics and not from direct exposure to Luther or to Calvin on this
                    > > subject.
                    >
                    > Especially since K directly quoted Luther more than once?
                    >
                    > Jim R
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    >
                    > ------------ --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- --------- ---
                    >
                    >
                    > Internal Virus Database is out-of-date.
                    > Checked by AVG Free Edition.
                    > Version: 7.5.476 / Virus Database: 269.9.6/865 - Release Date: 24/06/2007 8:33 AM
                    >


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                  • Roger Clough
                    James, My opinion is that Luther was so overwhelmed by the doctrine of by faith alone and Paul s statement that Paul hoped to know only Christ and his death
                    Message 9 of 18 , Apr 8, 2008
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                      James,
                       
                      My opinion is that Luther was so overwhelmed by the
                      doctrine of "by faith alone" and Paul's statement
                      that Paul hoped to know "only Christ and his death on the Cross" that fine details of  theology didn't concern him.
                      His theology is a theology of the heart = cross. So he
                      let Melancthon, who was more of a thinking type, write
                      the Augsburg confession and Book of Concord. 
                       
                      - Roger Clough
                       
                       
                       
                      ----- Original Message -----
                      Sent: Monday, April 07, 2008 11:34 PM
                      Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism

                      Don: thanks much. The information you post on that page is very
                      useful. I don't think it supports your point, however. It does
                      support the idea that K did learn of one version of predestination
                      through Schleiermacher. It does not offer any evidence that K did not
                      read Luther or Calvin for himself, however. K quotes from The
                      Smalcald Articles in Concept of Anxiety, for example, which is solid
                      evidence that K read at least that much of Luther. And if he read
                      that much of Luther, he probably read much more.

                      I completely disagree with this reading of the quoted passage in
                      Concept of Anxiety:

                      <<This primary concept of predestination expressed in I A 295 is found
                      again in the works, including The Concept of Anxiety [Dread], pp. 55
                      f., where Vigilius Haufniensis declares: "sin presupposes itself, not
                      of course before it is posited (that would be predestination) .... "
                      This means that a person first appears as sinner in his meeting
                      Christ, but at the same time he manifests whether he is destined for
                      salvation or for perdition, depending on whether he accepts God's
                      offer of grace or rejects it.>>

                      Haufniensis says that sin cannot presuppose itself before it is
                      posited -because- that would imply predestination, for one thing.
                      This statement is predicated upon a rejection of predestination and
                      doesn't appear to make distinctions between different "kinds" of
                      predestination -- distinctions which, honestly, sound like the
                      hair-splitting sophistry Martensen accused Kierkegaard of (the fact
                      that K responded this way to the doctrine of predestination implies a
                      great deal of discomfort with the doctrine itself).

                      Furthermore, Haufniensis' s argument throughout CA needs to
                      simultaneously affirm God's freedom, human freedom, and the fact that
                      sin is heterogeneous with creation (I have already posted quotations
                      to that effect). If sin were to presuppose itself before it is
                      posited by any one individual, it would exist independently of the
                      deciding individual and would therefore be a part of creation, not
                      separate from it -- making God the author of sin. Haufniensis claims
                      that ethics rejects this possibility because it is blasphemous (I
                      believe that was one of my quotations).

                      Sin presupposes itself -once it is posited-: in other words, it does
                      not exist for the individual until the individual considers it as a
                      possibility. Once the individual has done so, however, the individual
                      has sinned -- or better, the individual can only do so after the
                      individual has sinned. The distinctions between sin and guilt in
                      Climacus is not shared by Haufniensis that I can recall, and are
                      psychological realities: since both Haufniensis and Climacus believe
                      that God exists, both must believe that sin is always sin in God's
                      eyes even if we only understand it as guilt before becoming a
                      Christian.

                      At any rate, "sin presupposing itself only once it has been posited"
                      is the inverse of the truth that we don't know that we are innocent
                      until we have lost our innocence -- so that we only know innocence
                      retrospectively. Sin in Haufniensis (and in K I suspect), as in
                      Augustine, is not a "thing" that exists in the world, but a
                      misrelation between otherwise inherently good things. This
                      misrelation as Haufniensis understands it is specifically
                      psychological -- or, perhaps I should say, Haufniensis is primarily
                      concerned with the psychological manifestations of the spiritual (self
                      to self and self to God) misrelation that is sin.

                      Jim R


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                    • James Rovira
                      Thanks Don -- that quotation definitely supports your point. I did assume from your prior quotation that K studied Scheiermacher early on since he was being
                      Message 10 of 18 , Apr 8, 2008
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                        Thanks Don -- that quotation definitely supports your point. I did
                        assume from your prior quotation that K studied Scheiermacher early on
                        since he was being tutored by Martensen at the time, but that by
                        itself didn't support your assertions about K's reading of Luther.
                        Your quotation from the Journals and Papers certainly does, though.
                        Since CA 1844 the quotation from JP was 3 years later.

                        Weren't the Smalcald Articles written by Luther? To me reading these
                        is "reading Luther." But, that's not the same as reading OBW, Table
                        Talk, the sermons, etc.

                        Jim R
                      • Donald Anderson
                        Roger, I believe you are correct that Luther was rather one sided in his views. Thanks for your insight. Luther tended to emphasize those issues of theology
                        Message 11 of 18 , Apr 8, 2008
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                          Roger, I believe you are correct that Luther was rather one sided in his views. Thanks for your insight. Luther tended to emphasize those issues of theology that concerned him and on which he had a bone to pick with the Roman church. His task in life turned out to be not a theologian or merely an interpreter of the Bible but rather to fight against the entrenched beliefs of the powers that existed at the time that Luther clearly understood to be misguided if not outright false. He wasn't interested in dotting i's and crossing t's, in sorting out the various sides of an issue and weighing them carefully to tease out their various nuances.

                          This latter was a concern of K however and K's major criticism of Luther was that he was not dialectical, which is to say, I think, that Luther often ignored a lot of important issued and that his arguments were too extreme and had been instrumental in making his followers views one-sided to their detriment. Luther emphasized the 'by faith alone' doctrine and didn't say much about the work that faith produces but K believed that Luther clearly in his actions modeled these kinds of works. K somewhere says that Luther saw both sides but his followers forgot the works part because Luther didn't leave enough in writing about it (perhaps) and simply emphasized the 'faith alone' part. K also seemed to feel that Luther as the leader of a movement, so to speak, did not model the works in the latter years of his life but settled into domesticity which he felt also contributed to the problem he saw in later generations of Lutheranism.

                          It seems to me that Luther's greatest influence on K was in what he did rather than anything he wrote or said. This is certainly my view and has been for many years.

                          I'm working on these issues in my studies of K and would be glad to share more for any who would like and would be interested in any and all ideas anyone has such as yours.

                          Don


                          --- In kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com, "Roger Clough" <rclough@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > James,
                          >
                          > My opinion is that Luther was so overwhelmed by the
                          > doctrine of "by faith alone" and Paul's statement
                          > that Paul hoped to know "only Christ and his death on the Cross" that fine details of theology didn't concern him.
                          > His theology is a theology of the heart = cross. So he
                          > let Melancthon, who was more of a thinking type, write
                          > the Augsburg confession and Book of Concord.
                          >
                          > - Roger Clough
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          > ----- Original Message -----
                          > From: James Rovira
                          > To: kierkegaardians@yahoogroups.com
                          > Sent: Monday, April 07, 2008 11:34 PM
                          > Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism
                          >
                          >
                          > Don: thanks much. The information you post on that page is very
                          > useful. I don't think it supports your point, however. It does
                          > support the idea that K did learn of one version of predestination
                          > through Schleiermacher. It does not offer any evidence that K did not
                          > read Luther or Calvin for himself, however. K quotes from The
                          > Smalcald Articles in Concept of Anxiety, for example, which is solid
                          > evidence that K read at least that much of Luther. And if he read
                          > that much of Luther, he probably read much more.
                          >
                          > I completely disagree with this reading of the quoted passage in
                          > Concept of Anxiety:
                          >
                          > <<This primary concept of predestination expressed in I A 295 is found
                          > again in the works, including The Concept of Anxiety [Dread], pp. 55
                          > f., where Vigilius Haufniensis declares: "sin presupposes itself, not
                          > of course before it is posited (that would be predestination) .... "
                          > This means that a person first appears as sinner in his meeting
                          > Christ, but at the same time he manifests whether he is destined for
                          > salvation or for perdition, depending on whether he accepts God's
                          > offer of grace or rejects it.>>
                          >
                          > Haufniensis says that sin cannot presuppose itself before it is
                          > posited -because- that would imply predestination, for one thing.
                          > This statement is predicated upon a rejection of predestination and
                          > doesn't appear to make distinctions between different "kinds" of
                          > predestination -- distinctions which, honestly, sound like the
                          > hair-splitting sophistry Martensen accused Kierkegaard of (the fact
                          > that K responded this way to the doctrine of predestination implies a
                          > great deal of discomfort with the doctrine itself).
                          >
                          > Furthermore, Haufniensis's argument throughout CA needs to
                          > simultaneously affirm God's freedom, human freedom, and the fact that
                          > sin is heterogeneous with creation (I have already posted quotations
                          > to that effect). If sin were to presuppose itself before it is
                          > posited by any one individual, it would exist independently of the
                          > deciding individual and would therefore be a part of creation, not
                          > separate from it -- making God the author of sin. Haufniensis claims
                          > that ethics rejects this possibility because it is blasphemous (I
                          > believe that was one of my quotations).
                          >
                          > Sin presupposes itself -once it is posited-: in other words, it does
                          > not exist for the individual until the individual considers it as a
                          > possibility. Once the individual has done so, however, the individual
                          > has sinned -- or better, the individual can only do so after the
                          > individual has sinned. The distinctions between sin and guilt in
                          > Climacus is not shared by Haufniensis that I can recall, and are
                          > psychological realities: since both Haufniensis and Climacus believe
                          > that God exists, both must believe that sin is always sin in God's
                          > eyes even if we only understand it as guilt before becoming a
                          > Christian.
                          >
                          > At any rate, "sin presupposing itself only once it has been posited"
                          > is the inverse of the truth that we don't know that we are innocent
                          > until we have lost our innocence -- so that we only know innocence
                          > retrospectively. Sin in Haufniensis (and in K I suspect), as in
                          > Augustine, is not a "thing" that exists in the world, but a
                          > misrelation between otherwise inherently good things. This
                          > misrelation as Haufniensis understands it is specifically
                          > psychological -- or, perhaps I should say, Haufniensis is primarily
                          > concerned with the psychological manifestations of the spiritual (self
                          > to self and self to God) misrelation that is sin.
                          >
                          > Jim R
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
                          >
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                        • Roger Clough
                          Don, McGrath makes the point in his recent history of the Reformation that Luther was dismayed to see the various new branches going off in various directions
                          Message 12 of 18 , Apr 9, 2008
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                            Don,
                             
                            McGrath makes the point in his recent history of the Reformation
                            that Luther was dismayed to see the various new branches going
                            off in various directions other than "by faith alone", his minimalist
                            theology.  Many of the other branches were of the arminian variety
                            -- zwingli in particular-- so rather than remove works as credit for salvation,  
                            they sought  to morally reform the RC through doing good rather than bad--
                            they didn't get Luther's point emphasizing faith alone.
                             
                            Yes, many of Luther's statements, particularly about  the Catholic
                            Church, are extreme. But otherwise people would not have had the
                            courage to oppose the RC. (You have to demonize your enemy.)
                            But keep in mind that Luther always would rather have reformed
                            the RC than break with it.
                             
                            As far as dialectics go, Luther was only concerned with Paul's
                            dialectic in Romans-- flesh vs. spirit, law vs. gospel. He wasn't out
                            to create a new theology or philosophy. My impression of K is that
                            he did not examine L's dialectic (which is critical for salvation)
                            to any degree. So my pov is that if you want salvation, study Luther;
                            if you want to understand man in the flesh, study K. 
                             
                            Like K seems to have, Luther also suffered from depression.
                            There is an online letter he wrote to help someone with depression.
                            He takes his method from Paul, it seems, advising the person not
                            to think of dark things. It reads like modern cognitive therapy
                            for depression, which I use.
                             
                            - Roger Clough
                             
                             
                            ----- Original Message -----
                            Sent: Tuesday, April 08, 2008 9:50 PM
                            Subject: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism

                            Roger, I believe you are correct that Luther was rather one sided in his views. Thanks for your insight. Luther tended to emphasize those issues of theology that concerned him and on which he had a bone to pick with the Roman church. His task in life turned out to be not a theologian or merely an interpreter of the Bible but rather to fight against the entrenched beliefs of the powers that existed at the time that Luther clearly understood to be misguided if not outright false. He wasn't interested in dotting i's and crossing t's, in sorting out the various sides of an issue and weighing them carefully to tease out their various nuances.

                            This latter was a concern of K however and K's major criticism of Luther was that he was not dialectical, which is to say, I think, that Luther often ignored a lot of important issued and that his arguments were too extreme and had been instrumental in making his followers views one-sided to their detriment. Luther emphasized the 'by faith alone' doctrine and didn't say much about the work that faith produces but K believed that Luther clearly in his actions modeled these kinds of works. K somewhere says that Luther saw both sides but his followers forgot the works part because Luther didn't leave enough in writing about it (perhaps) and simply emphasized the 'faith alone' part. K also seemed to feel that Luther as the leader of a movement, so to speak, did not model the works in the latter years of his life but settled into domesticity which he felt also contributed to the problem he saw in later generations of Lutheranism.

                            It seems to me that Luther's greatest influence on K was in what he did rather than anything he wrote or said. This is certainly my view and has been for many years.

                            I'm working on these issues in my studies of K and would be glad to share more for any who would like and would be interested in any and all ideas anyone has such as yours.

                            Don


                            --- In kierkegaardians@ yahoogroups. com, "Roger Clough" <rclough@...> wrote:
                            >
                            > James,
                            >
                            > My opinion is that Luther was so overwhelmed by the
                            > doctrine of "by faith alone" and Paul's statement
                            > that Paul hoped to know "only Christ and his death on the Cross" that fine details of theology didn't concern him.
                            > His theology is a theology of the heart = cross. So he
                            > let Melancthon, who was more of a thinking type, write
                            > the Augsburg confession and Book of Concord.
                            >
                            > - Roger Clough
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            > ----- Original Message -----
                            > From: James Rovira
                            > To: kierkegaardians@ yahoogroups. com
                            > Sent: Monday, April 07, 2008 11:34 PM
                            > Subject: Re: [Kierkegaardians] Re: Freedom, possibility, necessity, determinism
                            >
                            >
                            > Don: thanks much. The information you post on that page is very
                            > useful. I don't think it supports your point, however. It does
                            > support the idea that K did learn of one version of predestination
                            > through Schleiermacher. It does not offer any evidence that K did not
                            > read Luther or Calvin for himself, however. K quotes from The
                            > Smalcald Articles in Concept of Anxiety, for example, which is solid
                            > evidence that K read at least that much of Luther. And if he read
                            > that much of Luther, he probably read much more.
                            >
                            > I completely disagree with this reading of the quoted passage in
                            > Concept of Anxiety:
                            >
                            > <<This primary concept of predestination expressed in I A 295 is found
                            > again in the works, including The Concept of Anxiety [Dread], pp. 55
                            > f., where Vigilius Haufniensis declares: "sin presupposes itself, not
                            > of course before it is posited (that would be predestination) .... "
                            > This means that a person first appears as sinner in his meeting
                            > Christ, but at the same time he manifests whether he is destined for
                            > salvation or for perdition, depending on whether he accepts God's
                            > offer of grace or rejects it.>>
                            >
                            > Haufniensis says that sin cannot presuppose itself before it is
                            > posited -because- that would imply predestination, for one thing.
                            > This statement is predicated upon a rejection of predestination and
                            > doesn't appear to make distinctions between different "kinds" of
                            > predestination -- distinctions which, honestly, sound like the
                            > hair-splitting sophistry Martensen accused Kierkegaard of (the fact
                            > that K responded this way to the doctrine of predestination implies a
                            > great deal of discomfort with the doctrine itself).
                            >
                            > Furthermore, Haufniensis' s argument throughout CA needs to
                            > simultaneously affirm God's freedom, human freedom, and the fact that
                            > sin is heterogeneous with creation (I have already posted quotations
                            > to that effect). If sin were to presuppose itself before it is
                            > posited by any one individual, it would exist independently of the
                            > deciding individual and would therefore be a part of creation, not
                            > separate from it -- making God the author of sin. Haufniensis claims
                            > that ethics rejects this possibility because it is blasphemous (I
                            > believe that was one of my quotations).
                            >
                            > Sin presupposes itself -once it is posited-: in other words, it does
                            > not exist for the individual until the individual considers it as a
                            > possibility. Once the individual has done so, however, the individual
                            > has sinned -- or better, the individual can only do so after the
                            > individual has sinned. The distinctions between sin and guilt in
                            > Climacus is not shared by Haufniensis that I can recall, and are
                            > psychological realities: since both Haufniensis and Climacus believe
                            > that God exists, both must believe that sin is always sin in God's
                            > eyes even if we only understand it as guilt before becoming a
                            > Christian.
                            >
                            > At any rate, "sin presupposing itself only once it has been posited"
                            > is the inverse of the truth that we don't know that we are innocent
                            > until we have lost our innocence -- so that we only know innocence
                            > retrospectively. Sin in Haufniensis (and in K I suspect), as in
                            > Augustine, is not a "thing" that exists in the world, but a
                            > misrelation between otherwise inherently good things. This
                            > misrelation as Haufniensis understands it is specifically
                            > psychological -- or, perhaps I should say, Haufniensis is primarily
                            > concerned with the psychological manifestations of the spiritual (self
                            > to self and self to God) misrelation that is sin.
                            >
                            > Jim R
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
                            >
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                            >


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