Re: Is Jonah to be taken literally?

From: Howard J. Van Till (
Date: Thu Aug 23 2001 - 08:58:56 EDT

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    In response to my recommendation of Richard E. Rubenstein's book, When Jesus
    Became God, George said:

     What Nicea did was to formalize the realization that Christian thought had
    come to over three centuries, that one couldn't make the fundamental
    affirmations that Christ is Lord and Savior in the fullest senses if one
    stopped short of saying in one way or another that he is "one in being with
    the Father."

    Perhaps you're correct that the Athanasian doctrine re Jesus' divinity won
    the day because it functioned to warrant other highly valued doctrines.
    That, by itself, sheds no light on either its truth or falsehood.

    Of course there were various political factors involved at Nicea and its
    aftermath - on both sides, it should be noted. Only the most naive about
    the church will be surprised by that, and only those who don't believe that
    God can act through the less attractive features of human nature will think
    that this disqualifies the council's decision.

    One would have to be equally naive to propose that all major ecclesiastical
    council decisions should be considered to be, in effect, "acts of God" or
    human acts that reflect only God's leading.

    I continue to suggest that Rubenstein's book deserves a reading. Christians
    would be illumined by knowing more of Christian ecclesiastical history.

    Howard Van Till

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