Flower girls throw petals on a road during the annual Corpus Christi procession organized on the Feast of Christ the King in Kolkata, India, on Nov. 20, 2016. About 10,000 Catholics joined the annual rally organized by the Catholic Association of Bengal. (AP Photo/Bikas Das)

On Christ the King Sunday, Christians pledge allegiance to the Prince of Peace

(RNS) — Lost in the shorter, busier, cooler days of late November is a major Christian observance called the Solemnity of Our Lord Jesus Christ, King of the Universe.

Better known by its Protestant name Christ the King Sunday, this liturgical innovation of relatively recent vintage poses profound and countercultural theological implications for Christians.

In an era when religion can be a nominal identity marker worn lightly or a lifestyle choice based on aesthetic, convenience and intensity preferences that take on consumeristic character, Christ the King challenges all believers.

Is Christ king? If so, what does that require of the Christian? How should it shape individuals’ faith and devotion? What does it demand for the church and its relationship to the temporal order?

If Christ is not king, what’s the point of all this anyway?

Pope Pius XI, in his 1925 papal encyclical Quas Primas, says that the kingship of Christ is a bulwark against the “manifold evils in the world.” Pius, who instituted the feast day of Christ the King, reminded Christians reeling from the aftermath of World War I that the central theme of Jesus’ teaching was the kingdom of God.

For Jesus’ followers, this is what it’s all about.

In a fallen world corrupted by sin and lust for power, Christ proclaims a kingdom based on love and mercy. Grace and truth flow freely, beyond the goodness of what any earthly kingdom can provide.

Situated at the end of the liturgical year, Christ the King Sunday is a joyful exclamation point. It reminds Christians of the joys of our greater citizenship just as they prepare in the holy season of Advent to make way for the newborn King.

Pope Pius XI in 1930. Photo by Alberto Felici/Creative Commons


 This image is available for web publication. For questions, contact Sally Morrow.

In his encyclical, Pius points to the familiar words of the prophet Isaiah: "For a child is born to us and a son is given to us, and the government is upon his shoulder, and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, God the mighty, the Father of the world to come, the Prince of Peace. His empire shall be multiplied, and there shall be no end of peace. He shall sit upon the throne of David and upon his kingdom; to establish it and strengthen it with judgment and with justice, from henceforth and forever.”

The kingdom, as Isaiah imagines it, is a place of justice and blessings for all. Those promised blessings inspired Pius to institute a feast day honoring Christ as king.

“That these blessings may be abundant and lasting in Christian society, it is necessary that the kingship of our Savior should be as widely as possible recognized and understood, and to the end nothing would serve better than the institution of a special feast in honor of the Kingship of Christ,” wrote Pius.

Pius speaks to modern people who are pulled in competing directions about where their highest loyalties should lie. His encyclical points them to the rich teaching of the Old and New Testaments about divine kingship.

All manner of Christian prayers and devotions, especially hymns, also give beautiful and powerful expression to faith in Christ as king.

A well-loved hymn proclaims, “Crowns and thrones may perish, kingdoms rise and wane; But the church of Jesus constant will remain.”

If this is to be believed, Christians have to reaffirm their faith in one whose reign and kingdom would never end.

Christ the King offers a hopeful reminder to Christians whose loyalty to Jesus becomes subsumed by or subordinated to political ideology. This is especially urgent in an era of resurgent nationalism. Belief in Christ as King also guards against the ever-present and profoundly un-Christian tendency to elevate politics over faith.

This vital holy day also invites believers to consider Christianity’s eschatological claims and ramifications.

Christ the King is not just about what has already happened or is happening now. It points to the kingdom Jesus proclaimed reaching its culmination at the end of time.

That focus on the kingdom reminds Christians that their hope is in God’s kingdom—not in short-term political gains.

“When once men recognize, both in private and in public life, that Christ is King, society will, at last, receive the great blessings of real liberty, well-ordered discipline, peace and harmony,” Pius wrote.

Lastly, the feast of Christ the King reminds our political leaders that they do not rule by their own power or might – and that their leadership role is not meant for their own gratification.

Instead, they should “make laws and administer them, having in view the common good and also the human dignity of their subject,” wrote Pius.

"The result will be a stable peace and tranquillity, for there will be no longer any cause of discontent."

(Jacob Lupfer, a frequent commentator on religion and politics, is a writer and consultant in Baltimore. The views expressed in this commentary do not necessarily represent those of Religion News Service.)

Comments

  1. This works better when individuals decide (individually) to make Christ king in their individual lives, and when they do not rely solely upon their groups and affiliations to supposedly make Christ king of everybody else in a particular iteration of belief. The more a religion is seen as a group activity, the more it misses the boat.

  2. You wrote: “…they do not rely solely upon their groups and affiliations to supposedly make Christ king of everybody else in a particular iteration of belief.”
    Interesting…..Christ had Paul set up a church for that reason.
    Christ also taught: ” “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[b] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18

  3. Yes, indeed, THE Christ Jesus of the gospels, epistles and revelation is:

    “The King of the Jews”!
    “The King of Israel”!
    “The King of kings”!
    “The King of the nations”!

  4. “Christ had Paul set up a church for that reason.” Or so Paul claims.

    “I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Since the age has come and gone several times already, we must conclude that Christ, having fulfilled His promise, is no longer with us.

  5. Or so Paul claims! lol…….lol………..lol
    You missed: “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[b] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”

  6. Jesus also said to His disciples, “Do not go among the Gentiles”. He seems to have been a sower of confusion, which might imply that He Himself was occasionally in a state of confusion.

  7. Or that you’re barking up the wrong tree and your exegesis has some defects.

  8. This I didn’t know. I always learn something new. But I already knew that Paul never had a problem with contradicting Jesus.

  9. Of course, silly – the disciples were sent to the Jews. Paul was the one sent to the gentiles. If you are going to pick scripture from a hat, at least understand it.
    And you still avoided ; “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[b] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.”

  10. “Go therefore …”

    Is it possible that this was added later by some enterprising copyist to justify the expansionist strategies by the Church leaders of the 2nd and 3rd centuries who realized that the Gentiles had a lot of money waiting to be tapped?

  11. Re: “Is it possible that this was added later by some enterprising copyist to justify …” 

    It’s possible, yes, I suppose. I’m not aware of any scholarship asserting the entire passage is an interpolation. The only proposed interpolation in that passage, which I’ve heard about, concerns only the phrasing of the last part of Mt 28:19. Currently, e.g. in the NASB, it reads: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” But writing in the early 4th century, Eusebius quoted its last portion as follows: “… Christ, who had said to them, ‘Go ye and make disciples of all the nations in my name’.” (Eccl. Hist., Bk III, ch. 5, s. 2) 

    The thinking currently is that the wording originally was what Eusebius quoted, but “the Father, Son and Holy Spirit” were inserted into it, to make the text align with later christology. The reason this might have happened after Eusebius’ time is that it wasn’t until after him that christological conflicts began to include speculation about the Holy Spirit and its relation to the Godhead — it really erupted with the rise of Macedonius, Patriarch of Constantinople, in the 340s, by which time Eusebius was probably dead, and wasn’t really resolved until the council of I Constantinople in 381. Now, might there have been an earlier layer of interpolation, prior to Eusebius, which was subsequently altered, itself? Perhaps, but if so I’ve never heard any evidence of it has been found. 

    I’ll end this by pointing out there might be scholarship out there which I haven’t heard of which posits what you suggest. It might be worth looking into. The problem is that pre-4th century manuscript evidence, which would provide the most likely support for it, is scant. There are c. a dozen 2nd-3rd century fragments of Matthew but I’m pretty sure none of them contain this passage. Barring something like that, the only way to propose it as an interpolation is by other means, e.g. linguistic style evidence. 

  12. It’s also possible that Christ was beamed up to a space ship, and has as much probability as your comment. Thanks

  13. HpO: Speaking of “a state of confusion”, what do you have to say, then, about your goddess?

    alwayspuzzled (a year ago): “Infinite god … she [is] cognizant of the flow of time in its entirety, from the Big Bang to the Cosmic Contraction. … She knows what our choices are from her unlimited perspective. … Not omniscient … she is as surprised/ disappointed/ pleased/ bored/ alarmed/ exhilarated by our choices as we are.”

    HpO: Oh so your goddess is “as … bored … by [y]our choices as [you] are”? No wonder you’re consigned to an alwayspuzzled state. Say hi to her for me, as you oscillate on that collapsing bridge over the blue tsunami between Pat & Hetic.

  14. No, you did not since Paul did NOT contradict Jesus.

  15. I’ll end this by pointing out that there is definitely scholarship out tyhere which you haven’t heard of.

  16. There were no “expansionist strategies”.

    That was added by copyists.

  17. Yes, she really has left the trail of debris behind her here at formerly at National Catholic Reporter Comments.

  18. More “pointed” debris found at Patheos blog, Rational Doubt, reveals that 2 aunts persuaded their Catholic priest to permit their Catholic niece to marry off a non-Catholic Agnostic, Biological Male having deep-seated & forever-unresolved, hence self-defecat… I mean -deprecatingly “alwayspuzzled”, “binary” (his term) issues with Theism & Atheism. He attacked Atheists at that Ex-Christian, Anti-Jesus blog – yet spared every Atheist at RNS. Clearly because of his Broiling Hatred Toward Conservative, Traditional Christians. Poor wife.

  19. How does your Catholic wife cope with your Constant Catholic-Bashing Agnosticism? Do her 2 aunts who “tapped” on the “always gullible and st*pid” (because Christian) priest to marry off their niece to Lucky You, regret their waste of “a lot of money” on their parish, ever since then?

  20. Info on alwayspuzzled for you on this thread, for next time when he attacks you.

    Great weekend, ‘sis!

  21. Thanks for this:

    Currently, e.g. in the NASB, it reads: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.” But writing in the early 4th century, Eusebius quoted its last portion as follows: “… Christ, who had said to them, ‘Go ye and make disciples of all the nations in my name’.” (Eccl. Hist., Bk III, ch. 5, s. 2)

    I never knew that, though having similar suspicions. But I go by researches by born-from-above, fired-up and die-hard followers of THE Christ Jesus of the gospels, epistles and revelation – who are Non-Trinitarians.

  22. And I’ll remind you, there’s a lot of scholarship out there you have never heard of. The question is, is this a concession you’re capable of admitting to? 

  23. Earth to Sandi! Earth to Sandi!
    We have no reason to believe that a space ship was hovering over Jerusalem 2000 years ago.

    We have every reason to conclude, from what we know of the history of the Church during its first 300 years, that an ambitious leadership structure was emerging and evolving and that several of those leaders wanted to market Christianity to the Gentile community.
    Marketing to the Gentiles would be much more effective if the Church leaders could show that it was authorized by Jesus Himself. Since Jesus had earlier said that his message was only for the Jews, we have good reason to suspect this passage was a later insertion to support the Church leadership’s Gentile strategy.

  24. So does mine. It’s pretty clear to most of us that you don’t know what it is you don’t know. 

  25. My focus goes beyond knowing who and what I hate.

    As to “clear to most of us” – who all is in there?

  26. A very useful summary of the manuscript attestation relevant to this passage. Thank you.

    Since the manuscript trail for much of the Gospel is so spotty, in order to bring a thoughtful understanding to bear, it seems reasonable to apply other parameters. I realize that this approach lacks academic rigor, though I think it has some intellectual validity.

    One useful screen is “Who benefits?”. The primary beneficiary of the passage in question would have been those early Church leaders who wanted to show that their decision to expand their marketing of Jesus’ message to the Gentile community was divinely authorized.

  27. Re: “I realize that this approach lacks academic rigor, though I think it has some intellectual validity.” 

    Some alternative analysis methods are more reliable than others, and some specific applications of these methods are better than others. Sometimes an interpolation can be detected simply by narrative continuity. That is, does the wording fit within the sequence of the text around it? Famously, using an example outside of the Bible texts, there’s the Testimonium Flavianum, Flavius Josephus’ mention of Jesus in his Antiquities of the Jews. It’s in Bk 18, Ch 3, s 3. If you read the sections before and after it, one sees it doesn’t fit at all … sections 2 and 4 both deal with disasters in Roman-Jewish relations, but as it’s written, the Testimonium doesn’t relate at all. All by itself this doesn’t necessarily “prove” the Testimonium is an interpolation, but it IS a compelling piece of evidence for it, and as such, it’s definitive. 

    As for things like linguistic style evidence, that works better in some places than others. There is, for example, compelling style evidence that Ephesians is not a genuine Pauline epistle, and this was noted as long ago as the 16th century (Erasmus, IIRC noticed it). In this case, style evidence carries weight because an entire book can be compared with several entire other books — i.e. there’s a large sample-size to review. For shorter passages, this kind of analysis won’t work very well. 

    Re: “One useful screen is ‘Who benefits?’. The primary beneficiary of the passage in question would have been those early Church leaders who wanted to show that their decision to expand their marketing of Jesus’ message to the Gentile community was divinely authorized.” 

    You’re correct about this. It’s useful to ask who benefits from any given wording in scripture, and how they do so. This sort of question is implicit, and sometimes explicit, in scholarship. 

    In the case of the Great Commission as a whole, though, it doesn’t help much, per se. For all we know, it might have been to the original author’s benefit to include it, because his own agenda might have been to expand Christianity, thus making it original to the gospel itself. 

    As for the text of the Great Commission itself, it’s worth pointing out that there’s nothing about it which specifically talks about Church-building. The original Greek word for “making disciples” is μαθητεύω (mathéteusate), a form of the verb μαθητευω (mathéteuó) which means “being apprenticed.” Now, apprenticeship in the ancient world, as now, carries a connotation of individuality … i.e. it refers to a discrete mentor/student relationship. As such, it doesn’t say or even suggest anything about groups, churches, institutions, etc. 

    So even the person who put the Great Commission into the gospel (whether it was its original author, or a later editor) may not even have had “church-building” as such in mind at the time he wrote it. It may simply be that he wanted individual Christians to go and spread Christianity individually to their own “apprentices” in the religion. That the Great Commission later was construed as a “church-building” imperative, later on, may well have been an unintended consequence. 

  28. There is no confusion there. Context really DOES matter, folks.

    In Matthew chapter 10, Jesus specifically sends only 12 people on a limited evangelistic tour, limited to a few cities or towns, and limited to Jewish audiences. Your snippet does not contradict anything, because it only pertained to the 12 folks who were sent on a one-time evangelistic tour.

    2 These are the names of the twelve apostles: first, Simon (who is called Peter) and his brother Andrew; James son of Zebedee, and his brother John; 3 Philip and Bartholomew; Thomas and Matthew the tax collector; James son of Alphaeus, and Thaddaeus; 4 Simon the Zealot and Judas Iscariot, who betrayed him.
    5 These twelve Jesus sent out with the following instructions: “Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. 6 Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel.”

  29. PsiCop wrote, “The only proposed interpolation in that passage … concerns only the phrasing of the last part of Mt 28:19. Currently, e.g. in the NASB, it reads: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.”

    Okay, let’s deal with it. Some folks have tried to claim that Matt didn’t write the last nine words there (commonly known as “the tripartite phrase”). But that specific claim is No Good. It’s just plain false. Why is that? Because of two knockout sets of facts:

    (1) “The traditional reading of Matthew 28.19 was alive and well before AD 325, and people knew about it. Furthermore, I have not found any controversy over the authenticity of this text anywhere. This is mounting up to be a really solid case: Not only do ALL extant Greek manuscripts with Matthew 28.19 in them contain the traditional reading, but all of the church fathers in the second and third century that quote or allude to it use the traditional version. Suddenly the case from Eusebius’ quotations does not seem so impressive.”
    — Quoted from Sean Finnegan’s article, “Is Matthew 28:19 Authentic or Forgery?” at the Kingdom Ready blog (see the link at end of post).

    (2a) Eusebius did know of the tripartite phrase in Matt. 28:19 (Letter to the Church in Cesarea).
    (2b) The times that Eusebius does quote or allude to Matt. 28:19 without reference to the tripartite phrase, are in contexts where his primary object is to show the necessity of making disciples in general, quoting only that part of Matt. 28:19 that fits his immediate purpose.
    (2c) Why are the quotes from Eusebius that **leave off** the tripartite phrase considered of greater weight than other Church Fathers who quote or allude to the text **with** the phrase?

    — Quoted and adapted from Tim Hegg’s TorahResource article, “Matthew 28:19.”
    https://www.torahresource.com/pdf-articles/matt-28-19-a-text-critical-investigation.pdf

    Bottom line: No use trying to use Matt. 28:19 to attack the trustworthiness, accuracy and authority of the Bible. That move clearly don’t work.

  30. Come on now. You really gonna sit there and endorse some brazen lie like “Ephesians is not a genuine Pauline epistle”, (supposedly based on “style evidence”), on MY watch?

    Just outright begging for WAR with sugar on top, is that it?

  31. Re: “Come on now. You really gonna sit there and endorse some brazen lie like ‘Ephesians is not a genuine Pauline epistle, (supposedly based on ‘style evidence’), on MY watch?” 

    You bet your backside I’m going to say precisely that! Because … now, stay with me here! … it’s true

  32. You speak of Eusebius’ other quotations of Mt 28:19. Please list them … all of them. Thank you. 

  33. Re: “As to “clear to most of us” – who all is in there?” 

    Myself, for one. As well as other commenters who’ve identified you as the erstwhile “Bob Arnzen.” 

  34. In addition to my previous request: 

    Re: “Furthermore, I have not found any controversy over the authenticity of this text anywhere.” 

    Sorry, but some raging Biblical literalist claiming he hasn’t “found any controversy” on something, is irrelevant, and not compelling to anyone but him. Whether he wishes it to be the case or not, there HAS BEEN discussion of this issue. That he would deny this discussion has ever taken place, is childish on his part. Waaaaaah wah waah … to him, and to other Biblical literalists like yourself. Go cry to someone who gives a crap about your lies and B.S.&nbsp

    Waaaah wah waaaah! 

  35. Thank for your usual side trip into muck throwing and off the topic.

    The question, btw, was about “clear to most of us” which indicated you were not alone at your keyboard.

  36. So sayeth the apostate with an axe to grind and less information than most on both the manuscripts and the exegesis of them.

  37. Re: “Thank for your usual side trip into muck throwing and off the topic.” 

    Just calling it as I see it, dude. Don’t like it? Too freaking bad … there’s not Thing One you can ever do about it! 

    Re: “The question, btw, was about ‘clear to most of us’ which indicated you were not alone at your keyboard.” 

    In case you haven’t figured it out already, the “us” was other commenters, as well as myself, who’ve discerned your disingenuousness, dude. 

    Grow up already and kwitcherbeefin’! 

  38. “The thinking currently is that the wording originally was what Eusebius quoted” – just to be clear that is the thinking currently of the source you used and whose opinion you wish to promote.

    The vast majority of Christians both currently and historically reject that.

  39. You’ll have to actually cite the “other commenters”, dude, which of course will require growing up already.

  40. If you can’t cite them, your comment remains unsupported.

    Have a nice day.

  41. Re: “The vast majority of Christians both currently and historically reject that.” 

    The vast majority of Christians don’t know the slightest thing about their own scripture, so why does their thinking matter? They haven’t any expertise. Their opinions are worthless. 

  42. Re: “If you can’t cite them, your comment remains unsupported.” 

    Their words are their words. Whether I cite them or not, cannot and will never magically change them. They can speak for themselves — and as it turns out, they already have! For me to speak for them … in front of them … would be rude. What’s even ruder is you pitching fits and demanding, childishly, that I do so. 

  43. If I run across their words, I’ll read them.

    Meanwhile I’m reading you claiming they said …. something …. which you can’t support.

    Speaking of course of childish fits and rudeness.

  44. So, you’re saying you and the vast majority of Christians are at about the same level.

    I think they’re way ahead of you.

  45. Again, and to repeat, “Bob,” you’re the rude one here. Is it fun being a sockpuppet?

  46. Re: “So, you’re saying you and the vast majority of Christians are at about the same level.” 

    No, that’s not what I’m saying, and you know it, sockpuppet. I’m saying most of them are nowhere near my own level. I know vastly more about Christianity’s history and scripture than the vast majority of Christians. Very few of them, for example, can read the New Testament in its original Greek, and of those, fewer still can read nearly all of the Church Fathers in their original languages (many Greek, some in Latin, and a few in Coptic and Syriac). 

    This is important because some scripture, and resultant Christian dogmas and doctrines, are based on passages originally written in languages they don’t know, and the ramifications of that are many. For instance, there’s one particular doctrine that’s commonly held by American Christians which is based on a passage (in English translation) which, in turn, is founded on wordplay which makes sense only in the Greek language. 

    I’m guessing neither you nor they know what passage that is. If you had my knowledge of Christianity, you’d immediately recognize what I’m talking about. 

    What I’m saying is that most Christians are pig-ignorant about their own religion. And that remains true, without regard to whether or not you agree. I assume you won’t, and really don’t care what you say about it. Believing in Jesus is simply not enough to grant anyone any expertise in Christianity. It just isn’t. If you’re offended by that statement, good! I want to offend you. You need to be offended. Because I’m offended by your sockpuppetry. 

    … which, unsurprisingly, you haven’t denied … 

  47. PsiCop calls someone a “sockpuppet”.

    Speaking of “pig-ignorant”.

  48. Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    For I belong to somebody.

    I feel, I feel, I feel like a morning star,
    I feel, I feel, I feel like a morning star.

    Oh, shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    For I belong to somebody.

  49. The 19th Century Russian theologian Alexei Khomiakov once wrote: “One may fall alone, but one is never saved alone.”

  50. When one reads the gospels in their entirety, and chronologically, the problem with your argument becomes obvious.

    This was no add-on passage. The change in the Kingdom message is clear from the triumphant entry onward, particularly in the Mount Oliver discourse.

  51. The issue is not the chronological order of the final product, which is irrelevant to this question. The issue is how much revision took place in the oral tradition and in the early written fragments before the final product

  52. No read English? Norwegian – can read? Here:

    Shoo, fly, ikke bry meg,
    Shoo, fly, ikke bry meg,
    Shoo, fly, ikke bry meg,
    For jeg tilhører noen.

  53. Arabic better?

    شو ، ذبابة ، لا تضايقني ،
    شو ، ذبابة ، لا تضايقني ،
    شو ، ذبابة ، لا تضايقني ،
    لأني أنتمي لشخص ما.

    shw , dhababat , la tdayiqni ,
    shw , dhababat , la tdayiqni ,
    shw , dhababat , la tdayiqni ,
    li’aniy ‘antami lishakhs ma.

  54. The chronological order of the gospels is not only relevant but critical to understanding the whole. After the triumphant entry into Jerusalem (the official arrival of the Messiah and the Kingdom) the narrative shifts from a promised Kingdom gospel offered to the Jews to a promised Kingdom offered and rejected (as foretold) and therefore taken to the “nations” who would be held accountable for how they received it. That is, after all, what the parable of the King’s wedding banquet is all about, as well as the overall vision of the lengthy Mount Olivet discourse.

    Your argument would necessitate the later addition of not just the Great Commission but also the entire last quarter of the gospel of Matthew and the other gospels as well, and upon exactly zero substantive evidence other than that you prefer the result.

  55. The author makes a fine explanation of Christ the King Sunday. Well worth the read. But it seems no one wants to talk about the content of the article. Instead we hear the same arguments from the same people carried over from another comment string and repeated once again. Nevertheless, Good job Jacob Lupfer.

  56. I have indeed taken the inoculation of reason and have discovered a lot of things, even with thorough applications of science, medicine, sociology and the other investigatory disciplines; cannot be understood without accepting intervention of the Divine.

    While it may be difficult for some to evaluate directly Son of Man and Only begotten Son of God claims by Jesus Christ as per the Bible, the results in how this is out pictured historically through his own helps establish the proof of stated divine sovereignty.

    For example, Joan of Arc she stated “I was in my thirteenth year when I heard a voice from God to help me govern my conduct.”

    This peasant teenager, unknown, claims she heard voices sent by God commanding her to see Charles VII, become his general, lift the siege at Orleans, break the enemy power, and crown him rightful sovereign of France at Rheims, then over a hundred miles deep inside of enemy territory.

    She actually achieves it all in ONE year.

  57. According to prevalent Christian theology, Jesus along with Father and Holy Spirit is part of the Divine whole which is GOD. Therefore since Jesus is not a created being but always existed, another such as Him cannot be brought into existence as you suggest.

    Yes Christianity is utter nonsense which should never have succeeded. It’s founder died within three years of establishing his public ministry. The first few Christians lived as heretics in a country of 2-4 million Jews who themselves were part of a hostile empire of over 58 million pagans inside the Roman world. Everyone already had their own well established religions.

    They did not use swords, no imperial decrees, no forcible Christianizing; the Christians won by ad campaign with divine love–claiming Jesus Christ rose from the dead, and there is true life to be found in Him.

    The study of the Bible along with examining the lives of God’s own, such as Joan of Arc, and how they influenced the world from Tiberius Rome to the present hour; offers plenty of evidence over the past 2000 years, God indeed has been giving continual communication.

  58. Actually, Peter was the first apostle to go and convert gentiles, the House of Cornelius.

  59. Over a long period of time you have claimed to be conversant in several extinct languages, a former elected official, a legal expert, and now you’re an assessor of other people’s intellects.

    PsiCop – what is that but a sockpuppet?

  60. Re: “Over a long period of time you have claimed to be conversant in several extinct languages …” 

    I said that, because I am literate in some extinct languages. 

    Re: “… a former elected official …” 

    I said that, because I was an elected official. 

    Re: “… a legal expert …” 

    You made that up, because I’ve said no such thing. Not as a general claim. There are some legal things I’m familiar with, based on experience, as would be the case for a lot of people (e.g. having been a zoning official in my homestate, I’m familiar with a lot of zoning laws here), but I’m no lawyer or generalized “legal expert,” and have never, ever said I was. 

    Re: “… and now you’re an assessor of other people’s intellects.” 

    I said that, because depending on the topic being discussed, I have enough knowledge to detect B.S., illogic, and ignorance. 

    Re: “PsiCop – what is that but a sockpuppet?” 

    Nothing you sniveled here indicates I’m a sockpuppet. Allow me to introduce you to a definition of that term

    “2 : a false online identity used for deceptive purposes” 

    If you need an example of sock puppetry, a famous one is John Mackey, CEO of Whole Foods

    The real sockpuppet here would be YOU, “Bob Arnzen,” or whatever your real name is. Not me. Even if I’d lied about knowing Latin, κοινη Greek, or Coptic … or if I’d lied about being an elected official … that wouldn’t make me a “sockpuppet.” 

  61. In Korean better?

    슈, 날아, 날 괴롭히지 마라.
    슈, 날아, 날 괴롭히지 마라.
    슈, 날아, 날 괴롭히지 마라.
    나는 누군가에 속하기 때문이다.

    syu, nal-a, nal goelobhiji mala.
    syu, nal-a, nal goelobhiji mala.
    syu, nal-a, nal goelobhiji mala.
    naneun nugunga-e soghagi ttaemun-ida.

  62. Apparently the “extinct languages” in “I am literate in some extinct languages” refers to English.

    “The real sockpuppet here would be YOU, ‘Bob Arnzen,’ or whatever your real name is. Not me.”

    So, your real name is PsiCop?

    Loud Mouth would be much more likely.

  63. Re: “So, your real name is PsiCop?” 

    Pay attention to definitions, dude. Anonymity is not sock puppetry. The latter is when one goes and creates extra false identities in order to throw people off — and it’s often used by desperate and childish people to bolster their own arguments (i.e. by making it seem as though more than one person agrees). 

    That happens to be the game YOU play, “Bob.” 

  64. If anonymity is not socket puppetry, then I am not guilty of sock puppetry.

    If it requires simultaneous posts on a thread or topic under multiple names, then I am not guilty of sock puppetry.

    In short, you have no case – just an axe to grind.

  65. Hear hear

    Reason, like the Blue Tsunami, is overrated

    Rate Reason Over Religion an F, therefore, and a borderline has-been

  66. Re: “If anonymity is not socket puppetry, then I am not guilty of sock puppetry.” 

    You are, because you’ve previously posted as “Bob Arnzen,” among other IDs here on Disqus. As I told you before, I’m not the only one who’s noticed this. 

    Re: “In short, you have no case – just an axe to grind.”7nbsp;

    … says a sniveling, crying, whiner who has an axe to grind. Hypocritical much? I expect you know, your own Jesus explicitly and unambiguously forbid you ever to be hypocritical. Right? 

    Hmm. Maybe you don’t actually know that. Oh well, here’s some instruction for you: https://www.agnostic-library.com/ma/whats-wrong-with-christians-being-hypocritical/

  67. ?Argument from ignorance, ? Joan of Arc’s activities previously mentioned are more consistent with a Divine explanation than a secular one,
    Please explain, why not unless your satisfied with giving a Logically Fallacious argument -“Appeal to authority” (your authority i presume? ).

    ?plus anecdotal fallacy ? That’s how God works, study the Bible and the lives of saints. Their compiled anecdotal stories changed the world creating the proof
    Again Please explain, why not unless your satisfied with giving another Logically Fallacious argument -“Appeal to authority” ( which I gather is your authority ).

  68. I do understand that PsiCop is a sockpuppet as you define it.

    So is Ben in Oakland.

    Your problem is you’re all meat and no potatoes, and it shows.

  69. Re: “I do understand that PsiCop is a sockpuppet as you define it.” 

    No, you don’t “understand,” because it’s not. 

    Again, and to repeat: Anonymity =/= sock puppetry. 

    On the other hand, creating a “Mark Connelly” identity, because other users have blocked you previously when you were “Bob Arnzen,” IS sock puppetry. 

    See the difference? It’s not hard to figure out, dude. 

    Like I said, it helps to pay attention to the meanings of words. I know this is difficult for you, but please, do try to keep up. 

  70. Portuguese?

    Shoo, voe, não me incomode
    Shoo, voe, não me incomode
    Shoo, voe, não me incomode
    Pois eu pertenço a alguém

  71. An interesting tactical approach, HpO. (Now I must steal it from you, of course.)

  72. Well, that’s a good declaration of war, PsiCop. I like your fighting spirit. (But alas, you are fighting against the Bible, and rationally, nobody’s gotta snowball’s chance against it. The Bible is just THAT good.)

    (1) Half of Ephesians — the last half — is already okay. In other words, the last 3 chapters already “falls within customary Pauline range” (Carson & Moo, see ref). So it’s just the first 3 chapters under fire.

    (2) The first 3 chapters feature long-ish sentences (e.g. one sentence might take up 7 or 8 bible verses). Lotsa prepositional phrases, participles, multiple synonyms, etc. So because Paul writes the first 3 chapters in this florid, long-ish, “pleonastic” style, some skeptics pretend like Paul somehow ain’t capable of writing in this different mode. So the skeptics say Paul didn’t write Ephesians (“compelling style evidence”, right?). Which openly denies Eph. 1:1 where Paul ays that HE wrote Ephesians.

    (3) BUT — and here it comes — we DO have biblical evidence of Paul using this unusual style after all. Turns out that when Paul does sweeping grand prayers, doxologies, big theology, he occasionally slips into that mode. E.g., Rom. 8:28-39 and 11:33-36. Hence, the Multi-modal Paul equals Skeptics Defeated AGAIN !!

    Ref: Carson, DA and Moo, Douglas J. An Intro to the New Testament, 2nd ed. Zondervan, 2005, pg 484.
    Accompanying Musical Selection: from Israel & New Breed: https://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=houghton+i+am+not+forgotten+lyrics&view=detail&mid=DBF036150A963DCC98A0DBF036150A963DCC98A0&FORM=VIRE

  73. Believe it or not, it’s already been done.

    And they actually DO support Tim Hegg’s points (2a) and (2b).

    godglorified.com/eusebius.htm

  74. Sorry, but you said, “I’m not aware of any scholarship asserting the entire passage is an interpolation. The only proposed interpolation in that passage, which I’ve heard about, concerns only the phrasing of the last part of Mt 28:19.”

    But now Mt 28:19 (and Eusebius) have been fully accounted for. You don’t have any more ammo against it.

  75. Apparently PsiCop is not a sockpuppet because you SAY it is not.

    Anyone can block another commenter in two clicks, so that goes nowhere.

  76. “As I told you before, I’m not the only one who’s noticed this.”

    Yes, the voices in your head …..

  77. Be my guest.

    But oops watch out now. Spuddie may call us out on that, with yet another of his True Scotsman indictments that here we are, in plain sight of Evangelical-Bashing Atheists like him, breaking gawd’s commandment, Thou shall not “steal”.

  78. Re: “Apparently PsiCop is not a sockpuppet because you SAY it is not.” 

    Not because I say it … but because it’s not. Again, you being “Mark Connelly” now, after having been “Bob Arnzen” previously … among other IDs … on the other hand IS sock puppetry. 

  79. Re: “But now Mt 28:19 (and Eusebius) have been fully accounted for. You don’t have any more ammo against it.” 

    Of course I do! I cited Eusebius and quoted what he wrote. Are you saying he wrote something other than what he wrote? 

  80. Re: “In other words, the last 3 chapters already falls within customary Pauline range’ (Carson & Moo, see ref). So it’s just the first 3 chapters under fire.” 

    Ah. I see. So you can find someone who claims Ephesians is only half a forgery, so that makes all of it — magically, somehow! — not a forgery. Is that it? 

    Let me explain something to you: Something can’t be half a forgery. No more than a woman can ever be a little bit pregnant. Forgery (and other kinds of fraud) are all-or-nothing propositions: If part of something is a forgery, then … stay with me here! … it’s a forgery! 

    Re: “Hence, the Multi-modal Paul equals Skeptics Defeated Again !!!” 

    Uh, no dude. Not even close! Analysts have long ago noted those changes in style and have an easy, not to mention obvious, explanation for them … Paul is citing existing creeds or other formulations. Sort of like when, in the old days, people wrote legal documents that included the phrase “in the year of our lord.” It doesn’t mean the people who composed those documents had actually come up with that phrase themselves, they were using a familiar contruction. 

    Stop patting yourself on the back, because you haven’t won anything. Actually, that you’d have fallen for this particular notion provides evidence of your ignorance of the subject. 

  81. So, the fact that your other IDs have not been brought to anyone’s attention – you think – makes PsiCop non-sockpuppet.

  82. I have no other IDs on Disqus. Hence, not a sockpuppet. 

    You, on the other hand, have a few others, particularly “Bob Arnzen.” Curiously, though, you’ve never denied having been him … even though I’ve said so a number of times over the past few days. Hmmm … ! 

  83. You say “I have no other IDs on Disqus. Hence, not a sockpuppet.” BUT there is no way to verify that.

    You say “You, on the other hand, have a few others, particularly ‘Bob Arnzen.'” BUT there is no way to verify that.

    Hmmm … !

    Do have a nice day.

  84. It”s **what** he wrote that got’cha this time.

    He affirmed the Mt 28:19 “tri-partite phrase” five times on his own, and his shortened phrases elsewhere can be explained via his context and his purpose on each occasion.

  85. How many people of the past who heard voices or had visions they attributed to god suffered from schizophrenia or other mental illnesses?

  86. Basic argument from Bot Spam Reasoning fallacy from you there. Rejected.
    Bot Spam reasoning is a virus of the mind. Inoculate against it with GOOD RELIGION.

  87. >>Again, the whole Christ Jesus story, the foundation of the mythology of Christianity, is utter nonsense from the get-go.
    How is it again that your purportedly omnipotent being, your “god” couldn’t do his saving bit without the whole silly Jesus-on-sticks hoopla? <<<>And how was Jesus’ death a “sacrifice”, when an omnipotent being could just pop up a replacement son any time with less than a snap of his fingers?<>For that matter, why is it that your “god” can’t respond to clear up the sincere disagreement here about his instructions, or even his own existence? Your sky fairy never made it to the digital, networked world; he can’t even produce his own website, nor even respond in a forum.<<

    An overall consistent message across traditional Christianity (both Catholic and Protestant )is maintained. Other disagreements regarding non-essentials of Christan faith is learning how to agree to disagree.

    God is communicating through the Bible, through the miracles, signs and wonders of his empowered (See Joan of Arc, Fatima 1917, Padre Pio, Charles S. Price, many examples available) and other areas, available for study in the digital, networked world.

    By examining the life of Jesus who did not, for example, do miracles for King Herod or prove that he was the Son of God by leaping from a tall building whereupon angels would rescue him; it can be understood God will NOT take away your free will in deciding whether or not you are going to love Him.

  88. You speak Russian?!

    3 дня назад
    Шу, летай, не беспокойся,
    Шу, летай, не беспокойся,
    Шу, летай, не беспокойся,
    Потому что я принадлежу кому-то.

    3 dnya nazad
    Shu, letay, ne bespokoysya,
    Shu, letay, ne bespokoysya,
    Shu, letay, ne bespokoysya,
    Potomu chto ya prinadlezhu komu-to.

  89. Re: “Eusebius affirmed the Mt 28:19 ‘tri-partite phrase’ five times on his own (Do we need more affirmations? Isn’t 5 good enough?)” 

    So you say. 

    Re: “And his shortened phrases found elsewhere can still be explained via his context and his purpose on each occasion.” 

    Irrelevant. 

  90. Re: “You say ‘I have no other IDs on Disqus. Hence, not a sockpuppet.’ BUT there is no way to verify that.” 

    Sure there is. That you don’t know of any, doesn’t mean the means to know that doesn’t exist. 

  91. >>How many people of the past who heard voices or had visions they attributed to god suffered from schizophrenia or other mental illnesses?<<

    A question along with that would be
    How many people who heard voices or had florid hallucinations and so diagnosed with schizophrenia or other mental illnesses have gone on to accomplish the same or similar as Joan of Arc while so afflicted?

    Science and medicine examining such individuals find they have had such problematic issues they are unable to function in a normal capacity let alone with superiors who would introduce them to still higher level individuals (such as royalty) who would trust them with serious responsibilities such as running an army.

    Moreover, from her voices and visions, Joan obtained accurate information she used in her battles and other dealings. Persons diagnosed with schizophrenia, temporal lobe epilepsy or other mental illnesses tend not to disseminate accurate prophetic type information.

    Persons such as Joan of Arc, a peasant female teenager, an unlikely person expected to successfully lead an army; except by the power of God; is one of the factors for some, that gives credence that Jesus Christ, as this article suggests; is indeed Christ the King.

  92. My (Breaking) Bad. I didn’t know TReason Over Religion reads only in Afrikaans. So here you go:

    Shoo, vlieg, pla my nie,
    Shoo, vlieg, pla my nie,
    Shoo, vlieg, pla my nie,
    Want ek behoort aan iemand.

  93. New Zealandish?

    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    Shoo, fly, don’t bother me,
    For I belong to somebody.

  94. Repetitious reply already answered.
    Marked as SPAM.

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