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 Re:

Quote:
I believe Fox would not at all approve of the extra biblical revelation that is so common today. Today, too many want to find revelation beyond scripture…some through higher criticism of the text, and other through mysticism that bypasses the text.


MC some great comments. Yes I do agree that George Fox would not agree fully with alot of what is happening. In this day there were other dissenter groups such as the "shakers" who would not want to have any religious form and you could compare that to some very off the wall charismatic groups and independent churches (there is nothing new under the sun). As I said in one of my posts that George Fox would always use scripture, it was rightly said: "that if the bible were lost in england it would be found in George Fox's mouth."

But definetly this does come down to the point that Ron is trying to draw that it is not just using the scripture but the theology and belief of that scripture is very important. Ron's words are heavy but addressing a subject like this in this way requires it to be heavy.

Quote:
(btw most non-charistmatics would regard me as a charismatic)


Most people consider SI charismatic :-P go figure.

Quote:
It is important because it is much the same as is professed by many pentecostal/charismatic believers who add 'special revelations' to the scripture and so become 'wiser than what is written'.


Yes. This is alot of the crux of the matter and as Ron is trying to paint the picture for us that the excesses in the charismatic movement is not something new but this type of thing has been going on for awhile. And that some of the discussions and talks even yes possibly the illustration in the sermon by wilkerson enters into this category. I will have to dig up the quotes Ron but I know that George Fox had a signifigant belief in that the Holy Ghost could reveal to Him all truth and arguable (possibly I think as Fox said) truth that goes beyond the black and white writings and pages of the bible. And he does back it up with many proofs such as "we know in part.." and many other scriptures. Hence I need to dig up those quotes. But He is a was a firm believer in the truth of the scriptures and their authority (this was a point that the puritans tryed to get at him with).

Quote:
The question I want to ask is 'is that light which illumines every man' a witness to man's conscience? The passage from John 1 is really all about God's witnesses to us and the Jew's response to the ultimate witness. Is it a witness 'to us' or 'within us'? Does it differ from conscience?


I hope people will delve into this question and continue with this discussion. I am personally captivated where it progresses and goes. Please no major tangents people :-P


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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon

 2005/10/26 8:34Profile
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 Re:

Quote:
..and interpret that to mean there was 'a light that illuminates every man' [b]and that we are born with it.[/b]



I see now, misunderstood where this was going. But does this not still reflect back on;

1Co 2:14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Which is impossible to recieve without the change of ownership.

Quote:
I realize from your comments that this language may be strange to some. In one sense this is a bit a cycle. I cannot start with a definition because this is what the whole thread is aimed at. How are we to define 'light which illumines every man'? and what status does 'extra-biblical' revelation have in the systematizing of Christian truth?



Rom 2:14 For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Rom 2:15 Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)

Hope I am not mudding things here, but isn't the 'remnant' of our original creation in effect our conscience? This seems to be what Earnest O'Neill kept appealing to, not in a sense of something lying dormant, a 'seed' that only needs to be illuminated, but our original construction, constitution, which has been handed over due to sin.

Joh 1:9 That was the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world.

Joh 3:19 And this is the condemnation, that [b]light is [u]come into the world[/u][/b], and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil.

The Light is Christ, the foreign invader.

Mat 10:34 Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword.
Mat 10:35 For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law.
Mat 10:36 And a man's foes shall be they of his own household.
Mat 10:37 He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
Mat 10:38 And he that taketh not his cross, and followeth after me, is not worthy of me.
Mat 10:39 He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.
Mat 10:40 He that receiveth you receiveth me, and he that receiveth me receiveth him that sent me.

Joh 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
Joh 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

1Pe 1:23 Being born again,[i]not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible [/i], [b]by the word of God, which liveth and abideth for ever[/b].

Likely jumping ahead to the extra-biblical and where MC did a much better job of expressing.


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Mike Balog

 2005/10/26 9:56Profile
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 Re:

Austin-Sparks in his book, [url=http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/the_school_of_christ.html]The School of Christ[/url] touches on this topic in Chapter 5 entitled [url=http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/001037.html]The Light of Life[/url].

One has to read the whole chapter to get a grasp of what he's saying but he made things simple when he explained:

Quote:
Looking backward at that tabernacle or that temple of old where the Shekinah glory was found, we mark that that light, that glory which linked heaven and earth like a ladder, had its expression in the Most Holy Place. You know that in the Holy of Holies, everything was curtained around and over, excluding every bit of natural light, so that the place, entered into apart from the Shekinah, would have been black darkness, without light at all; but entered into while the glory rested upon it, it was all light, it was all Divine light, heavenly light, the light of God. And that Most Holy Place sets forth the inner life of the Lord Jesus, His spirit where God is found, the light from heaven, the light of what God is in Him. His spirit is the Most Holy Place, in the holy House of God, and it was there, in that Most Holy Place where the light of the glory was, that God said He would commune with His people through their representative. "I will commune with you above the mercy seat between the cherubim" (Exo 25:22). The place of communion—"I will commune". What a lovely word—"commune". There is nothing hard, nothing terrible, nothing fearful about that. "I will commune with you." It is the place where God speaks; in the communion God speaks, makes Himself known. It is the place of speaking. It is called the place of the oracle, the place of the speaking; and that is the Propitiatory, the Mercy Seat, and that is all the Lord Jesus. He, we are told, has been set forth by God to be a propitiatory (Rom 3:25), and in Him God communes with His people. In Him God speaks to and with His people.

But the underlining must be of those words "in Him", for there is no communion with God, no communion of God, no speaking to be heard, no meeting at all, save in Christ. That would be a place of death and destruction for the natural man; hence the terrible warnings given about coming into that place without the right equipment, that symbolic equipment which spoke of the natural man having been altogether covered and another heavenly Man having enfolded him as with heavenly robes, the robes of righteousness. Only so dare he enter into that place: otherwise it was "lest he die . . ."



The natural man has no access into the inner chamber of life.



Quote:
That means that the natural man cannot come into the light, nor can he come into God's great purpose and be found in that House full of His glory, that vessel through which He is going to manifest that glory to His universe. The natural man cannot come in there: and when we speak about the natural man, we are not just referring to the unsaved man, that is, the man who has never come to the Lord Jesus. We are speaking about the man whom God has reckoned as being put aside altogether.



Quote:
This is stating a tremendous fact. Every bit of real light which is in the direction of that ultimate effulgence, the revealing of the glory of God in us and through us, every bit of it is in Christ Jesus, and can only be had in Him on the basis of the natural man having been altogether put outside, put away, and a new man having been brought into being with a new set of spiritual faculties: so that Nicodemus, the best product of the religious school of his day and of his world, is told, "Except one be born anew (or from above), he cannot see . . ." He cannot see. Well, it resolves itself into this, that to know even the first letters of the Divine alphabet we must be in Christ, and every bit that follows is a matter of learning Christ, knowing what it means to be in Christ.


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Rey O.

 2005/10/26 11:14Profile
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 Re:

MC
I am much of your mind on these things, although (perversely) I do want to leave room for the Spirit to reveal truth direct to my heart. However, when this happens I believe I have a duty to "search the scriptures to see whether these things be so." If we use the scripture just as a manual we risk what Tozer called 'logical deductions drawn from proof texts'. It becomes a sterile fact-book, even though the facts are true facts. It is just knowledge and knowledge 'puffeth up'. Unless a man learns to depend upon the Spirit in his understanding of the scripture he will almost inevitably degenerate into an 'evangelical'. (joking, but wanting to stress that doctrinal orthodoxy is by no means the same as being 'alive'.)

There are some who have used the idea that the Word was the domain of the Brethren and the Spirit the domain of the Pentecostals and that all we need to do is bring the two back together to guarantee revival. I cannot accept this; I don't think it does justice to either the Brethren or the Pentecostals, both of which have had men of Word and Spirit in their ranks. The phrase used is sometimes 'the Spirit must be checked by reference to the Scripture'; I think this expresses it wrongly. The Spirit will always be in accord with the Scripture, always. My job will always be to know for certain that what I am hearing is genuinely the Spirit and not my own bright ideas, or worse the ideas of another spirit. I still think that verse in Isaiah gets close to the matter, although it can be quoted with a deadly condemnation; “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” (Is. 8:20, KJVS) The Spirit will always speak 'according to this word', always. If what I am hearing is not 'according to this word' I am not hearing or am mis-hearing the Holy Spirit.

That opens up the whole question of 'interpretation' which is a different but related topic.

There is an interesting account of Fox with a native American from his journal:The Governor, with his wife, received us lovingly; but a doctor there would needs dispute with us. And truly his opposing us was of good service, giving occasion for the opening of many things to the people concerning the Light and Spirit of God, which he denied to be in everyone; and affirmed that it was not in the Indians.

Whereupon I called an Indian to us, and asked him whether when he lied, or did wrong to any one, there was not something in him that reproved him for it. He said there was such a thing in him, that did so reprove him; and he was ashamed when he had done wrong, or spoken wrong.

So we shamed the doctor before the Governor and the people; insomuch that the poor man ran out so far that at length he would not own the Scriptures. Is this 'all' that Fox meant by 'the light within'? How would this differ from conscience? The scripture makes very plain that the conscience is not a static conviction but a witness 'within' which is capable of being 'defiled' 'seared' and many other states.

Oswald Chambers says"Neither natural love nor Divine love will remain unless it is cultivated. Love is spontaneous, but it has to be maintained by discipline.
Chambers, Oswald, My Utmost for His Highest, May 11th (United Kingdom: Marshall Morgan & Scott) c1927. and, this is one of my all time favourite Chambers quotations: The Christian life is stamped by “moral spontaneous originality,” consequently the disciple is open to the same charge that Jesus Christ was, viz., that of inconsistency. But Jesus Christ was always consistent to God, and the Christian must be consistent to the life of the Son of God in him, not consistent to hard and fast creeds. Men pour themselves into creeds, and God has to blast them out of their prejudices before they can become devoted to Jesus Christ.
Chambers, Oswald, My Utmost for His Highest, July 2nd. (United Kingdom: Marshall Morgan & Scott) c1927. This is walking in the Spirit, and I man who walks like this will not 'keep' but will 'fulfill righteous requirement of the law'. This does not seem to be what Fox is referring to, unless Fox believed that the unregenerate 'Indian' could walk in the Spirit; I'm sure he didn't.

I'll pause here and prepare some Robert Barclay quotes for the next posting.


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Ron Bailey

 2005/10/26 11:46Profile
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 Re:

Word and the Spirit. I like Wersbies(sp?) book on knowing the voice of God, he uses the 3 lighthouse illustration to make a point. We recieve a quickening from the Word of God or have the inward witness, Then we hear the same thing through other channel,ie...radio---pulpit ---etc... and third we search it out in the bible to test it according to scripture. Anyway he put forth the proposition that until all 3 light houses lined up we should keep the matter in prayer. That works for me.


Question on interlight and Quakers, Are they universalists in thier approach to salvation?


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D.Miller

 2005/10/26 12:21Profile
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 Re:

Quote:
Question on interlight and Quakers, Are they universalists in thier approach to salvation?

Some are. bubbaguy has posted to the effect that we keep reincarnating until we are fit for heaven, but I think that is a fairly unique view.


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Ron Bailey

 2005/10/26 12:43Profile









 Re:

Ron, quote "bubbaguy has posted to the effect that we keep reincarnating until we are fit for heaven, but I think that is a fairly unique view."

This needs clarification. I have read enough accounts of reincarnation that have no reasonable other explanation, that I have become convinced that reincarnation happens, at least to some people. See the book Old Souls by journalist Tom Schoder. He starts out completely skeptical and ends up accepting reincarnation because of the mountain of evidence. http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0684851938/002-8909981-6831224?v=glance

You can read the introduction on this page.

But as for the purpose and how it fits into the Christian belief system and salvation, I have lots of questions. As a young child I had visions of living in India as a meditative/religious person. At that age, however, I had no idea or understanding of meditation and religion. Why would a child without understanding have visions of something completely foreign to him? I came to understand this better after reading the Old Souls book.

I know this is a hard thing for SIers to accept. I have a hard time accepting it. But if you doubt gravity, it doesn't make it go away.

Bub

PS. I am digressing here from the subject and don't want to change the subject from what Ron originally posted. (I'm all ears on the subject of the Light Within.) So, if you have comments on this post please just PM me. Thanks.

 2005/10/26 13:28
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 Re:

This is the introduction to Robert Barclays explanations of Quaker Theology. Barclay was a friend and travelling companion of George Fox and enjoyed Fox's confidence. He is regarded with suspicion by bubbaguys brand of Quakerism, but this book has always been regarded as the Systematic Theology of the early Quakers. Its style is very 'dense' and you will need to read it slowly but it is very logical in its progress:Seeing no man knoweth the Father but the Son, and he to whom the Son revealeth him; 2 and seeing the revelation of the Son is in and by the Spirit; therefore the testimony of the Spirit is that alone by which the true knowledge of God hath been, is, and can be only revealed; who as, by the moving of his own Spirit, he converted the chaos of this world into that wonderful order wherein it was in the beginning, and created man a living soul, to rule and govern it, so by the revelation of the same Spirit he hath manifested himself all along unto the sons of men, both patriarchs, prophets, and apostles; which revelations of God by the Spirit, whether by outward voices, and appearances, dreams, or inward objective manifestations in the heart, were of old the formal object of their faith, and remain yet so to be; since the object of the saints' faith is the same in all ages, though set forth under divers administrations. Moreover, these divine inward revelations, which we make absolutely necessary for the building up of true faith, neither do nor can ever contradict the outward testimony, of the scriptures, or right and sound reason. Yet from hence it will not follow, that these divine revelations are to be subjected to the examination, either of the outward testimony of the scriptures, or of the natural reason of man, as to a more noble or certain rule or touchstone: for this divine revelation, and inward illumination, is that which is evident and clear of itself, forcing, by its own evidence and clearness, the well-disposed understanding to assent, irresistibly moving the same thereunto; even as the common principles of natural truths move and incline the mind to a natural assent: as, that the whole is greater than its part; that two contradictory sayings cannot be both true, nor both false; which is also manifest, according to our adversaries' principle, who (supposing the possibility of inward divine revelations) will nevertheless confess with us, that neither scripture nor sound reason will contradict it: and yet it will not follow, according to them, that the scripture, or sound reason, should be subjected to the examination of the divine revelations in the heart. You will see how carefully Barclay tries to steer around things. He is strong in his assertions on the 'inner light' but is equally strong in his statements that these 'revelations...neither do nor can ever contradict the outward testimony, of the scriptures, or right and sound reason.' Please read this and decide whether you think he is on the right track.

What do you think of this statement above...even as the common principles of natural truths move and incline the mind to a natural assent: as, that the whole is greater than its part; that two contradictory sayings cannot be both true, nor both false;

Gravity, btw, is susceptible to scientific testing and proof by experiment. Reincarnation could never be so tested.


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Ron Bailey

 2005/10/26 17:50Profile
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 Re:

according to our adversaries' principle, who (supposing the possibility of inward divine revelations) will nevertheless confess with us, that neither scripture nor sound reason will contradict it: and yet it will not follow, according to them, that the scripture, or sound reason, should be subjected to the examination of the divine revelations in the heart.

That's interesting that he would make that statement. I'll need to re-read the whole again several more times to get it down in this brain of mine. :-(


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D.Miller

 2005/10/26 18:10Profile
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 Re:

Philo,

Quote:
If we use the scripture just as a manual we risk what Tozer called 'logical deductions drawn from proof texts'. It becomes a sterile fact-book



I hope I didn't appear to be saying that the bible as a manual replaces the Spirit. Actually I though your post was saying more clearly what I was trying to say. I was trying to say that scripture and spirit involve each other and are completely in agreement with each other. That is not to say that the spirit cannot speak into your heart without scripture…but such thinking is risky for me. The Spirit never disagrees with scripture but our hearts do!

If Paul had not been a scholar of scripture, but an empty headed student, could the Holy Spirit have quickened in him the revelation of Christ’s gospel? After all, Paul’s’ presentation of the gospel was not based solely on an internal vision…but on a regenerated understanding of Old Testament promises.

I'm not emphasizing the words apart from the spirit, as much as I want to highlight the spirit of the words.

Tommy Tenney (God Chasers) comes to mind as an example of someone who seems to disregard the spiritual aspect within the words of scripture. This popular evangelist calls the New Testament “dusty old love letters” and says that instead of the Word of God, we need to hear from the “God of the Word”. From this separation he then proceeds to testify how the spirit of power needs no words to convert people, or to revive the church. All that is needed is supernatural power.

I feel that our current Christian fascination with supernatural power (which is quite different from spiritual power) is really a misunderstanding of the "spirit of truth" Christians with “words of knowledge” and “prophecies” have their moments…but in the long run I have seen many “spirit-led” supernatural Christians spin out of control, while spirit-led bible believers are quietly plugging along in their devotion. Their “power” is not in gifts but in character, which is lacking in today’s approach to the Holy Spirit. In fact, one of the critiques I have about “revivalism” it that it can portray Christians at one church reading their scriptures as somehow dead, while in another church a mighty wind will blow in and make powerhouses out of all the undisciplined people who barely read their bibles. I believe such an image is based on a belief that the Spirit can operate void of scripture…leading to false revivals.

Well, these are just some loose personal thoughts. I don’t think ink on a paper page is “spirit” but I do think the distinction between God’s words and spirit is more blurred then the complete isolation we tend to hold them in. There is a hymn that captures this blurred distinction between words and spirit much better then my ramblings.

Break Thou the Bread of Life.

Break thou the bread of life, dear Lord to me,
As thou didst break the loaves beside the sea;
Throughout the sacred page I seek thee, Lord,
My spirit pants for thee, O Living Word.

Thou art the bread of life, O Lord, to me,
Thy holy Word the truth that saveth me;
Give me to eat and live with thee above;
Teach me to love the truth, for thou art love.

MC


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Mike Compton

 2005/10/26 18:58Profile





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