Comments about ‘Defending the Faith: Original languages can shed light on scriptures’

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Published: Thursday, March 14 2013 5:00 a.m. MDT

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george of the jungle
goshen, UT

All the words in the world can not change the fact that actions speak louder than words.

Sensible Scientist
Rexburg, ID

The word translated as "day" in the Genesis story of the creation is originally more like "time" or "period" in Hebrew, so young-earth creationists can't even appeal to the scriptures for their mistaken idea.

sharrona
layton, UT

RE:Original languages can shed light on scriptures. The article makes a good case for Biblical Hermeneutics and modern translations.

@ Psalm 8:5 You have made them a little lower than the “angels”/Elohim and crowned them with glory and honor.
Let the N.T. interpret the O.T.. Hebrews 2:7, You made them a little lower than the “angels”; you crowned them with glory and honor.

@ONLY BEGOTTEN. Mormons believe all humans were spiritually begotten by the Father before creation, "Only Begotten" is understood as being limited to mortality.

Although this word is often translated “only begotten,” such a translation is misleading, since in English it appears to express a metaphysical relationship. The word(monogenes) means “one-of-a-kind”. All Christians are children of God but Jesus is God’s Son in a unique, one-of-a-kind sense. The word is used in this way in John (1:14, 1:18, 3:16, and 3:18).

For God loved the world: He gave his “one and only Son”…(John 3:16 NET,NIV).

George Thomas
Mankato, MN

As a convert of 25 or so years and a former theology student in a protestant faith working towards ordination before I joined the church, this is the one subject that I still struggle with after all of these years.

I am sometimes dumbfounded by some members’ lack of understanding of the Bible and the importance of the Hebrew and Greek. Sometimes I say “Jesus didn’t say that” when someone quotes an oft misunderstood passage. The puzzled look I get is usually followed by: “He was not speaking English when he said that . . . the Greek translation reveals . . .”

It would behoove us to delve a little deeper into our scriptures and seek these things out. It is a great idea to study the bible with a concordance and lexicon sitting beside us.

Our footnotes are absolutely wonderful, don’t get me wrong, but it would be impossible for the church to put every single Greek or Hebrew reference in our scriptural footnotes, we need to study it out for ourselves.

Michigander
Westland, MI

This article is nothing more than the author's wresting/corruption of some beautifully correct KJV scriptures to support the two LDS false doctrines noted. His revisionist translation is far from correct because the interpretation (becoming Gods, baptism for the dead) contradicts the other scriptures in the KJV Bible.

In eternity (the new heaven and the new earth) there will be only God the Eternal Father (JEHOVAH) and his eternal sons and eternal daughters, and the holy angels. Also, one must work out his or her OWN salvation with fear and trembling (per KJV and BoM). One can NOT work out THEIR salvation as the erroneous practice of baptism for the dead vainly attempts to do.

What if all these deceased people don't want to be baptized? Do you force them to do so against their own will?

Michigander
Westland, MI

@sharrona:

Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten of the Father [JEHOVAH]. He came forth out of and is in the bosom of the Father per John chapter 1. Except for Adam and Eve, our first parents, the souls or spirits of all men and women who ever lived on the earth were created by the hand of the Father and the Son in the womb at conception. Even the angels of God (both holy and fallen) were created by the hand of the Father and the Son before Adam was created on the earth - both body and soul. That is why Jesus Christ is so special and unique, because He alone had a pre-mortal existance. We are the sons and daughters of God by ADOPTION thru Christ Jesus.

The Scientist
Provo, UT

As one who grew up studying the Bible in the original Greek, I can assure you Peterson's translations are off. He lacks the cultural knowledge necessary to accurately translate many Greek idiomatic expressions.

Mountanman
Hayden, ID

"We believe the Bible to be the word of God as far as it is translated correctly." As one who served as a missionary in an Asian country, I can tell you much is often lost in the translation.

Hospitality
SPRINGVILLE, UT

I find Daniel Peterson's information to be right on: In other words, man can become like God, knowing good from evil; and proxy baptism provides the opportunity for salvation to those who lived without ever knowing of it, if they choose to accept it. We existed before we were born: why is something that rings so true to my ears, so hard to be understood by others?

sharrona
layton, UT

RE: The article, But there is no “they” in the Greek of the passage. Context,

Else what shall they=(poieo G 4160) do which=(**oi) are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all? why are [they] then baptized for the dead?(1 Cor 15:29). **oi,(the ones)=Nominative plural article. Also condemned by early church councils.

RE: Michigander,Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten of the Father [*JEHOVAH]. He came forth out of and is in the bosom of the Father per John chapter 1.

“No one has ever seen God. “The only one”,[*YHWH] himself God, who is in closest fellowship with the Father ,[google*YHWH], has made God known. (John 1:18 NET Bible 2006 supported by, 2nd Century Papyrus 66. Plus earlier and better Manuscripts, Sinaiticus and Vaticanus.

RE: George Thomas, check Strong’s concordance or Thayer’s Greek to English Lexicon(dictionary).

ye might be partakers=(G.2844,koinōnos or communion/sharer)of the divine nature…(2 Peter 1:4)or…that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.” Eph (3:19).

Red Headed Stranger
Billy Bobs, TX

The Scientist
"As one who grew up studying the Bible in the original Greek, I can assure you Peterson's translations are off"

Well clearly you must be right. As someone who is clearly a man or woman of "science", and without clear documentation of you qualifications, nor evidence of a specific misinterpretation on Dr. Peterson's part (who professionally trains translators of ancient languages) then I should whole-heartedly and without reservation believe you. I don't know why Dr. Peterson even bothered to write his article because you so skillfully refuted all of his assertions in a two sentence reply. Because, you as "The Scientist" just know. Well played, sir.

Red Headed Stranger
Billy Bobs, TX

Michigander

"This article is nothing more than the author's wresting/corruption of some beautifully correct KJV scriptures to support the two LDS false doctrines noted. His revisionist translation is far from correct because the interpretation (becoming Gods, . . . contradicts the other scriptures in the KJV Bible.

Really? Let's take Theosis then from the KJV:

we are the offspring of God: Acts 17:29 .

So, if we are the offspring of God, and we are made in Their likeness, (KJV says "our" image) then why do you say we can't grow up to be like Him especially because Paul says that we are

"heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ": Rom. 8:17 .

Huh, doesn't that mean that we inherit what God and especially Christ has? Wait, here is Paul again saying that we can be heirs of God.

"if a son, then an heir of God through Christ:" Gal. 4:7 .

And when Paul and Christ say that we are to be perfect
"unto a perfect man": Eph. 4:13 and Christ on the Sermon of the Mount says we are to "Be ye therefore perfect, even as your Father which is in heaven is perfect."Matt.5:48

The Scientist
Provo, UT

Red Headed Stranger

If they would post my refutations, my assertions would be demonstrated.

Alas, it is apparently not "faith promoting".

Florwood
American Fork, UT

Michigander wrote "What if all these deceased people don't want to be baptized? Do you force them to do so against their own will?"

The act of baptism for the dead as practiced in the LDS church presents an opportunity, but is not a forcing. No person this has been done for is required to acknowledge or accept the ordinance.

This wasn't your main point, but at least now you can rest easier.

Red Headed Stranger
Billy Bobs, TX

Michigander

Now for your willful exclusion of the doctrine of Baptism for the Dead that Paul clearly taught. Jesus taught "Except a man be born of water … he cannot enter into the kingdom of God" John 3:5 So, to enter heaven, you must be baptized. So, let's talk about the "North Korean" problem. Let's say that a good man is born in North Korean. He loves his family, tries to be a good person, and then dies without meeting a duly-authorized representative of Christ, or really even hears of Christ. Is he condemned to Hell? What of all the people who never heard of Christ and then die. Are they condemned to hell? No kind, loving, just and non-capricious Father in Heaven would do that. Where in your theology does the poor soul in North Korea end up?

Baptism for the dead does not negate free will. If the person in this life rejects Christ (as Christ is the true judge) then Baptism for the dead will not save him. If someone on the other side chooses to not accept Baptism, then it isn't forced on them. Talk to real Mormons for real Mormon doctrine.

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

"He loves his family, tries to be a good person, and then dies without meeting a duly-authorized representative of Christ, or really even hears of Christ. Is he condemned to Hell? "

Red. When you write "duly-authorized representative of Christ" , don't you really mean someone of the LDS faith?

There are many many people who are "born of water" that the LDS feel the need to re-baptize.

Kind of hard on one hand to be "Christian, like all the others" while not acknowledging the baptism of the others as valid.

I never understood that.

Strider303
Salt Lake City, UT

I have noted one thing, OK maybe more than one, that is almost for certain, and it is a lot of comments to whatever Dr. Peterson writes. I accept his comments as reasoned and food for thought. I am not forced nor obliged to accept them as from the burning bush (apologies to whoever spoke that phrase in "The Great Santini") but I do note that many who write in opposition seem to be exercised and angry or at least upset with his opinion. Why the high blood pressure? The article is an opinion piece, written to enlarge the understanding of the reader. I take it for that and as I read I weigh other information on the subject(s) he and others write to form a consensus that continues to evolve. I have heard Dr. Peterson speak several times and find him engaging, humorous and knowledgeable. I, for one, look forward to reading or listening to him every chance I get, and the detractors? Not so much.

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

Strider303,

Me neither. Nor do I understand the burning desire to comment negatively about a religion to which I do not belong.

JoeBlow,

The issue of the Christianity of the LDS is not that we proclaim ourselves to be “like all the others” but that we are in fact Christian. When I was younger, the term Christian was a broad descriptor of nearly any who accepted and followed Christ. Now, particular denominations want to be able to define the term so as to exclude groups with whom they disagree (the LDS among those sought to be excluded) and to essentially redefine the term in their own image.

Are we different? Sure. Do we make particular claims of authority and doctrine? Yes (though other Christian denominations do as well).

Would LDS baptism be recognized by other Christian denominations that require it? Does Catholicism recognize any other denomination’s baptism?

JoeBlow
Far East USA, SC

Twin,

First, let me say that I would certainly consider the LDS to be Christian. But, as you say, that really boils down to ones definition.

I do not think that most of the Christian faiths find it necessary to re-baptize those who went thru Christian Baptisms previously. I believe that the Catholics do recognize other baptisms from what they consider to be other "Christian" faiths and see no need for a redo.

That said, many may not recognize LDS baptisms, but that may be because of their classification of "Christian"

Personally, if there is a God, I cannot imagine that he or she cares much one way or the other.

I think the ole "my church is more right/true/correct than yours" demeans religion in general and causes much more problems than religion solves.

I look at it this way. Be a good person, parent, neighbor. If you feel that church makes you better at it, go for it. But I highly doubt that "God" really cares which building you go in on Sunday, (or Saturday)

Twin Lights
Louisville, KY

JoeBlow,

I can tell you that someone close to me was raised a protestant had to be re-baptized as a Catholic.

I think being a good person is great. But religion is not simply about being a better person (though that should be a significant result) but also about our relationship with God.

I love the Church. I believe it to be what it purports to be – the primitive church restored in our day. Do others believe their church to be true – I think so (though it may be a bit different depending on denomination). But none of this excuses animosity.

BTW, I think God cares where you go every day.

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