Reincarnation/Biblical Inerrancy

Discussion in '2000-02 Archive' started by btouch, Apr 28, 2002.

  1. btouch

    btouch
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    My wife and I have taken over teaching the young singles (18-28) Sunday school class at our Baptist church. To try to gain more involvement and personal study, we have opted for a somewhat informal, open forum. This has really seemed to help get them thinking and talking.

    The class has taken on a somewhat apologetic type of discussion where questions are asked and discussed on one Sunday, we do our individual research on the questions during that week, and we attempt to provide some solid answers the following Sunday. This also leads to more
    questions and discussion topics and the cycle continues.

    Recently the topics and questions have seemed to focus on the "spiritual realm", heaven, hell, angels, etc. The most recent topic has been about reincarnation and what to say to those who believe in the idea of reincarnation.

    I quoted Hebrews 9:27, which says that man is appointed to die only once. Everyone seemed ok with this answer it appeared the discussion would end there. My goal is to help these young Christians to be able to defend their faith and for them to have the boldness to do so, so I wasn't willing to let them give up on this question of reincarnation so easily.

    I decided to play the role of my own devil’s advocate, by asking, "but what about Lazarus? Didn't he die more than once?"

    This question currently has the class, including me, stumped. I'm Sure this is going to lead our discussions more into the area of the inerrancy and uncontradictory nature of the Bible, but for now we're stuck on this one seeming contradiction that prevents us from leaving the reincarnation topic behind.

    Can someone provide some help in overcoming this?

    In Christ,
    Billy
     
  2. Rev. Joshua

    Rev. Joshua
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    Billy,

    There are minor contradictions within the biblical writings, but this is not one of them.

    The author of Hebrews is describing the natural order of things: humans die once, Christ comes twice. There are a few exceptions outside of that natural order: Elijah & Lazarus come to mind.

    Joshua
     
  3. Michael Edwards

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    Billy:

    Yes, I echo the above post. Also, remember not to divorce a text from its CONtext. If you do that, the Bible could be twisted to teach many things it does not.

    In Christ,
    Michael
     
  4. btouch

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    I sincerely appreciate your responses and I truly hope you don't find my reply offensive as it is not intended that way.

    First, I believe that the Bible is the inerrant Word of God and even though it was delivered through men, it was written as by His own hand. God is perfect in nature and cannot contradict Himself, even in the most minute details. We as imperfect humans, can, however, interpret the scriptures wrong. This can cause us to see some things as possible contradictions, but I believe if we read prayerfully and listen to where the Holy Spirit leads us, it is possible for us to see throught the assumed contradiction to the truth.

    You are right about taking Hebrews 9:27 out of context. I had read some books that used that as the basis of the argument against reincarnation. But, where in scripture does it say anything against the idea of reincarnation? Or is the fact that it doesn't say anything about reincarnation the whole argument?
     
  5. TomVols

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    A distinction to remember about Lazarus was the he was resucitated, not resurrected. If he had been resurrected, he'd never have died again. Obviously, Lazarus's situation was there for Jesus to perform an attesting miracle. That's hardly anything to bank on given the billions of people who have come and gone over the course of history [​IMG]
     
  6. Dr. Bob

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    Matthew 27 gives another instance of folks who were dead who came back to life:
    But notice the distinction clearly drawn:
    (many dead) arose = Greek "egeiro" from the root of collecting one's faculties; to waken or rouse (lit. from sleep, from sitting or lying, from disease, from death; or fig. from obscurity, inactivity, ruins, nonexistence):--awake, lift (up), raise (again, up), rear up, (a-) rise (again, up), stand, take up.

    Jesus resurrection = Greek "egersis" a special word from the above, meaning a resurgence (from death); or resurrection.
     
  7. tyndale1946

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    Tom Vols said:
    Is this Baptist doctrine? My bible tell me Lazarus was dead... Dead as a doornail, dead as a post, pushing up daisies, wormfood and any other idiom for being dead! He also was resurrected and came forth in his grave clothes... Now how dead is dead!

    Jesus said he sleepeth and to Jesus we are just asleep but Jesus told his disciples plainly Lazarus is DEAD! I believe he had to die again as there are no saints in heaven now and they are all waiting for the resurrection and judgement day. If Lazarus is resurrected now where is he? He is in Abrahams bosom as the parable says awaiting the resurrection of his body. If he is not there then the white throne judgement has already passed and we missed it!... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  8. Helen

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    Hi Billy,

    I come from a non-Christian background and when I was in my twenties and my mother's New Age jazz was part of my life, I really ended up wrestling with the concept of reincarnation and the Bible.

    Biblically, at least as important as the Hebrews verse mentioned above, is the story Jesus told about the rich man and Lazarus in Luke 16. They had both lived once, died once, and their judgment was pronounced. No second chances for the rich man.

    From another point of view, I realized something else: reincarnation keeps the same soul and exchanges bodies. This doesn't help a thing! It is not a new body we need but a new heart!

    Reincarnation is also tied hand and foot to the concept of karma -- you get what you have earned and you have to work it out yourself through as many lifetimes as it takes. When you understand this, you understand that the concepts of forgiveness, of love, of sacrifice of God for man, of mercy -- all are negated by the reincarnation idea. In other words, it is demonic to the core, substituting different flesh for a different spirit.

    Now, I'm the first one to admit I am looking forward to my Resurrection body! I'm sitting here with a sinus headache (again), arthritis in my thumbs and big toes, and a generally detiorating body at only 54 years old! But I have the new spirit and so I am not worried at all about the time coming, soon or later, when I get to shuck this body, step out of it, and not hurt anymore!

    The LAST thing any person in their right mind would want is to go through pimples again, and then watch the downhill slide take its toll -- again!

    Praise God that He never asked us to do that!
     
  9. Bro. Curtis

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    Amen, Helen. If I knew I had to go thru another lifetime down here, I would be pretty bummed out.

    "And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" Hebrews 9:27

    (I know, it was already quoted, but it says all we really need to hear.)

    [ May 02, 2002, 05:14 AM: Message edited by: Mr. Curtis ]
     
  10. blackbird

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    Ole Lazarus was raised from the dead. Resurrection implies "beyond corruption." Resurrected bodies do not die again! Ole Laz still had a body that would corrupt after he walked away from the tomb. He had to die again one day. In fact, there were those in the metropolis who wanted that day to hasten on. But do you think that that threat bothered Laz!? Do you think that threat from the outside had Laz all worked up in a frezzy?! Shucks, no!

    Ole Laz was not reincarnated! Reincarnation philosphy teaches that you die and come back as something else. Read about the weard, weard philosphy of some who believe reincarnation such as General George Patton. When Lazarus died--he died as Lazarus. When Jesus raised him from the dead--he was still Lazarus!

    This kind of thread does not require a "Thinking Cap!"
     
  11. Johnv

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    I think there's a difference between reincarnation and reanimation. When we talk reincarnation (the sould coming back into a different body), that's clearly unbiblical. But God created one sould to go with one body. If, in a case like Lazarus (he was clearly dead, and his body was already decomposing) His physical body is restored and his soul reunited, he;s reanimated. Don't forget that the Bible also talk about our own bodies being resurrected one day.

    So yes, it's one body, one death, but as it was already said, there are exceptions (Lazarus, Elijah).
     

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