Three Men

Discussion in '2003 Archive' started by Patriot, Aug 14, 2003.

  1. Patriot

    Patriot
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    Does Baptist theology accept that God presented himself to Abraham in the form of 3 men to which he called Jehovah? I've read somewhere that this is a confirmation in the Old Testament, but it seems kind of a vague argument. What do you all think?
     
  2. Xingyi Warrior

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    There are lots of vague things in the Old Testement. The Bible leaves a lot of things open to speculation that gives rise to many apocraphyl stories that try to fill in the gaps. The Bible doesn't tell us whether the men were angels or God and two angels, etc... Honestly I don't see its that important. The meeting's importance was to inform Abraham that he and Sarah were going to have a son (Isaac) and to tell Abraham about his plans to visit Sodom and Gommorah to see if the evil that was being told about the place was indeed true. If it was, and they were all running around gay, and committing a host of other sinful attrocities, then he was gonna mack the place. (Sorry, I don't buy the modern interpretation that he destroyed the cities for "dissing" tourists. In that case New York better look out!)
     
  3. Helen

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    Hi Patriot,

    The part of history you are referring to is found in Genesis 18. The three visitors appear to have been the Lord and two angels. The two angels proceed down to Sodom where they are taken in by Lot instead of being allowed to stay in the town square for the night, which was normal in many cities then.

    In verse 16, we see the men who had visited Abraham got up to leave. Evidently two of them did, for at the beginning of chapter 19 we read that the two angels arrived in Sodom on the evening. The Lord, however, stayed behind to reveal to Abraham what He was about to do, and the conversation is fascinating, for it appears that Abraham is bargaining with the Lord. While it may have looked that way from a human point of view, what was happening as well was a very important spiritual lesson: when, in a civilization, there are not enough godly men to expose the next generation to the truth, then that civilization gets wiped out. We see the same on a MUCH larger scale with Noah, who, the Bible tells us, was the ONLY righteous man of his time! That is incredible! One man preaching righteousness to a world full of people.

    As far as Sodom was concerned, the Lord promised to spare it if only ten righteous men could be found there. There were not that many in the entire city. So, no, the cities of the plain were not destroyed because of the way they treated the two visitors. Where Warrior got that idea I don't know. The Bible is quite plain about them being destroyed because of their general rebellion and wickedness.

    We learn in Isaiah 3:9, that not only was Sodom involved in pervasive sinning, but they were parading it. I could not help, when I checked that verse for you just now, but think of the gay parades in San Francisco and other places! That aside... there are a number of references to the fate of Sodom and the cities of the plain in the Bible.

    In Ezekiel we learn this from the Lord through that prophet in 16:49-50: Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy. They were haughty and did detestable things before me. Therefore I did away with them as you have seen.
     
  4. Dr. Bob

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    These are often called "theophanies" (God + manifest) but in reality, most OT are more accurately "Christophanies" (Jesus + manifest).

    Think of all the times when God (the Son, usually) in a pre-incarnate bodily form, visited with man.

    Jacob wrestled with Him
    Moses talked to him in a bush that didn't burn up
    Joshua met him on the battlefield
     
  5. Artimaeus

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    Dr. Bob, not that I disagree with you (because I don't) but, what reasons do you have for calling them Christophanies rather than Theophanies?

    I realize it is easy to imagine because we think of Christ with a body and don't think of the Father with one.

    Why not pneumophanies? If fire, a cloud, and a dove aren't a problem then appearing as a man wouldn't be either.

    Just thinking and asking out loud.
     
  6. Paul of Eugene

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    Here's an very thought provoking passage concerning the spirit and Jesus:

    Acts 16:6-7
    6 They passed through the Phrygian and Galatian region, having been forbidden by the Holy Spirit to speak the word in Asia;

    7 and after they came to Mysia, they were trying to go into Bithynia, and the Spirit of Jesus did not permit them;
    NASU

    Now it appears to me that Paul and his party were not dealing with different spirits here but in some fundamental sense these two are really the same in this passage.
     
  7. Patriot

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    Weird Paul, very interesting. Had never read that.
     
  8. Dr. Bob

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    God, Jesus, YHWH, Spirit, are all often interchangable in the early church that recognized the three as one.
     

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