Thursday, March 30, 2006
What Kind of Night
Tonight was a tough night. Have you ever been in a mud pit? That's what tonight was like. I went in so totally prepared. I left thinking I was so totally prepared. The other side doesn't have to follow certain sensible rules of interpretation. Let me give you an example. I have hundreds of passages. One that I have used is John 4:13, 14, "13 Jesus answered and said unto her, Whosoever drinketh of this water shall thirst again: 14 But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life." Let me tell you what this passage has in it for eternal security---at least three things. One, the context contrasts lots of drinking (works) with one drink (grace). Jesus was saying that she didn't have to keep drinking, but drink once. Two, the second "drinketh" is aorist in the Greek, which means drink completed at one point in time, punctiliar action. Third, "shall never" is a double negative in the Greek (ou me), which means "no, not ever." So this is emphatic. One drink and she will never thirst, contrasted with the physical water that one must keep drinking and drinking. I showed it to him three times. He finally answered tonight, and he just twisted it to pieces. I had to sit and listen to him. He quoted a "Mr. Shank" and gave page numbers and said the guy was "accredited," implying that I wasn't. He used "Shank" to say that the aorist really was not one drink, but was a lifetime of drinking. He went to a passage that uses the aorist to "show" that the temple was built over a period of 46 years and it "was built," using the aorist. He said that the aorist showed that she didn't have to keep drinking and drinking, and yet she was drinking and drinking. I was angry, very angry. I sat and listened and it was hard to keep composure. I did, but it was hard to take. When I got up, I got rather loud. It seemed that this was the best recourse for his rhetorical devices. I ridiculed Shank. I called him Mr. McGillicuddy who got his degree from a post office or cereal box. I was thinking of a cut of meat when he said Shank. It was off the wall.
John 17 is a wonderful passage on eternal security. At least 6 times eternal security is promised with the use of the perfect verbs. The Lord's prayer must be answered, since it surely was in the Father's will. Essentially, he didn't care. Judas wasn't kept. That was his argument. The counter is: Judas wasn't given to the Son by the Father to be kept. Judas may have done miracles, but Jesus never knew him. It never says that once in the verse, but he goes all over showing that Judas was an apostle, did miracles, etc., and yet Jesus lost him (v. 12). Judas was lost because he was not given, and perfect verbs say that He couldn't be lost, but because it says that no one was lost except Judas, that meant that anyone could be lost and all of John 17 is rendered moot on that point. He used numbers of rhetorical techniques to help the home audience along, essentially telling them that they were smart enough to see what he was telling them, and that I couldn't fool them with the things I was attempting to say.
I'm on the affirmative. My first speech was great, maybe even spectacular, but then he gets up and the mud slinging begins. His goal, I'm sure, is to win ugly, but just win, baby. I want the people to get what the Bible teaches on the issue from Scripture statements. He pieces together inferences and implications, extracting from thin air his doctrine. He makes OT Israel saved when they crossed the Red Sea and then lose it in the wilderness. And, yes, so much more. I'll tell you how it goes folks, but tonight, it wasn't pretty. He uglies it down so that when you're done, the whole forest is burned down in an attempt to get one tree. I'll debrief you pieces at a time, but I sat amazed tonight listening to this guy wax, not eloquent, but itchy ear wax.
OK, I'm done. I've got to go get the slime off.