Struggling with this info that is new to me - Hebrews & Other Gods

That is my point. The term “el” is probably just a generic term, similar to our word “god.” As a result, it is not surprising that it is used to refer both to Yahweh and to pagan Canaanites gods.

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my assumption in reading your response is that you may not theologically read the bible or care much for its contents. I accept that I am completely at odds with the majority of users of this forum (most are here because they are evolutionists first, then potentially Christian second). I disagree with that view simply because I am philosophically Christian first, and I study Christian theology deeply…i do not see it possible to reconcile the issues faced by TEism. Perhaps one could blame this on a requirement to study a little Philosophy in Christian Education as part of my university degree back in the 90’s, however, in looking at the various worlds views presented to us at the time, it was universally obvious back then, and remains such today, there is no space for TEism in my world view…its simply untenable. That is because anyone who is honest with themselves knows full well, it is the philosophical that drives the need to study the physical. Science does not come before philosophy.

I say the above because the Bible does provide the answer to exactly those two questions you sprouted…it is the only place where that information can be found anywhere in antiquity from an account that is also backed up by:

  1. extensive archeological evidence,
  2. first hand accounts of the existence of it characters from external sources (study “Polycarp” for starters)
  3. philosophical consistencies with life as we know it today (ie follow 10 commandments and universally, you will be happier even in secular society all around the world),
  4. medically (live according to the biblical health principles and your life will be healthier and longer)…

anyway, I think it irrelevant that one should attempt to use physical evidence to explain God. If that is what you are searching for then I suggest you will never find Him.

The following story comes to mind in answer to this…

11 1Kings 19: Then the LORD said, “Go out and stand on the mountain before the LORD. Behold, the LORD is about to pass by.”

And a great and mighty wind tore into the mountains and shattered the rocks before the LORD, but the LORD was not in the wind.

After the wind there was an earthquake, but the LORD was not in the earthquake.

12 After the earthquake there was a fire, but the LORD was not in the fire.

And after the fire came a still, small voice. 13 When Elijah heard it, he wrapped his face in his cloak and went out and stood at the mouth of the cave. Suddenly a voice came to him and said, “What are you doing here, Elijah?”

Greetings! I’m not sure I understand. I don’t think you are saying we should we approach learning with prejudice against what we may learn–right? God is the God of all truth, is He not? Should we consciously reject some of the truth, because we don’t like it, or it doesn’t fit in our philosophical desire (it’s nice to fit it all in a certainty of a given idea/faith framework, but that doesn’t mean it’s true)

I am sorry if I am misunderstanding this post.

BTW I really like the passage from Elijah–the portion before it, especially, when God deals gently with a man who was at the end of his rope. I have a lot to learn from that.


Wrong! Absolutely wrong.

Most of us Christians here are both Jesus-following Christians and accepters of modern science including evolution.

You malign us by accusing us of putting our acceptance of Christ as somehow in second-place to our acceptance of science. Please desist from such mis-characterisations.


Aboslutely I am saying that. Probably many won’t realise this, however, in reality all education is indoctrination…it’s never unbiased because of culture as just one influence.

So yes, we should do exactly that.
The real world outside these forums consistently uses science to set the stage for philosophical argument.
The truth is, science cannot explain the philosophical…Michael behee intentionally remains agnostic on the question of the biblical account and I believe for good reason…he accepts that science can’t explain God. We can use it to find evidence of God, but not prove he exists. That is a philosophical argument. This does not however put science in front of philosophy. I am a strong believer that we are driven by the questions of epistemology…these provide the driving force to want to search for knowledge. Yes science is a mechanism…but interpreting its data is the issue here…one cannot possibly demand Darwinian angle when dealing with the Bible…it simply doesn’t work theologically.

Wrong. There is no demanding of an ‘angle’, it is just the recognition of truth – the truth that God has revealed in the Bible and the truth he has revealed in creation (if there appears to be a conflict then you are interpreting one or the other or both incorrectly). Theologically it’s no problem if you believe God is sovereign. Are you familiar with God’s providence or is that a foreign concept to you?

This ignores the fact that the verses of the Bible that TEism claims to be an allegory are self reveling truths…they are foundational to all Biblical doctrine. The entire theology of the Bible hangs on the fourth commandment in Exodus 20…“for in six days God created the heavens and the earth”

I find it amazing that people came to me with stuff like, I’m just using my own interpretation…I am not interpreting anything in that verse…it is an identical repeat of Genesis chapter 1 summarised in a few words.
This is also the first part of why Seventh Day Adventists worship on the Sabbath. It has nothing to do with Jewish tradition…where were the Jews in Genesis 1? God took the Jews into the desert more than a thousand years later, not to teach them something new, it was to remind them of something very very old.
I ask you to consider…am I the one interpreting Genesis chapter 1 as an allegory, or is a TEist doing that by claiming because it doesn’t fit the Darwinian model, it must be an allegory despite almost all literary experts denying it is…they universally recognise that it’s a narrative.?

Clearly the latter is the case in that the TEists are interpreting outside of the meaning of the text.

Clearly you are insisting on a myopic interpretation that does not comport with the rest of reality, not to mention insisting that your interpretation is infallible. It’s not.

Remember that God gave the book deal to the Jews. They looked back in faith and wrote the book. Let’s not edge them out.

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Because it’s not true of any state education I received from even primary school on.

Yep. An almost 3 decade indoctrination in critical thinking skills was jammed into my head by a wide variety of types of people involved in my government-funded educations. That’d be about 28-30 years (I’ve lost track a bit) in public schools and public universities. That is precisely the kind of indoctrination we all need.


That does not answer the question.

The point is, there were no Jews for over 1000 years after the time that the narrative illustrates it started. It is complete nonesense to claim Jews existed in that period. Is about as applicable as me claiming Anglo Saxon roots. I was neither born in that region nor lived there. I have a distant history but I’m not alone in making claim to that around the world…I have no exclusive claim to it…neither do the Jews with Abrahimic origins. The Bible clearly claims we are all descended from Genesis origins…Adam, then Noah. I don’t think Abraham is relevant to the discussion…we as Christians accept the Jewish lineage through him, however Noah had a number of other sons through which others can trace their heritage other than Shem.

Indoctrination is a good thing, if the doctrine is true (not that it can’t be misused). Anyone who drives a vehicle has been indoctrinated, I hope!

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I didn’t claim Jews existed back then. It’s still a Jewish story; the writers were looking back in faith.

Hello again.

I’m not sure what this is. Is it implying that because one group is not perfect in interpretation, it doesn’t matter what stance we take–that all stances are the same?

When I was in undergrad, I really struggled with this. A well meaning Christian (the Godliest and kindest man I have ever known; I wish I could be like him some day), said we all make mistakes, no matter how honest we are, and interpret things fallibly. So, I understood that to mean that we could take the Bible and ignore other things, as there could be a mistake with the others (in retrospect, I’m not sure that that is what he meant). However, when I talked with my professor about that impression, he was very kind. He said slowly, “then how can we know anything at all, if we are not able to reason?”

He was right. Jesus asked us to strive for perfection. Any mistake on another’s part does not make it right for me not to self examine.

I learned even more that as a Christian, I chose the faith because I wanted it. I don’t want to leave my comfortable environment, where I interpret things the way I see them. I don’t want to ask questions that leave me uncomfortable.

It is not an impregnable position, to be a person of faith.

If we asked a Muslim, Buddhist or Hindu why they believed the way they did, and they said they could not question anything that their faith forbade, would we feel that they were being honest?

On the other hand, I love the passage in Psalm 103–“As a father pities his children, the Lord pities those who fear him; for He knows our frame. He remembers that we are dust.” Surely, God knows exactly how limited we are, for He made us. He also made us able to seek and ask questions. Like a parent watching a child stumble on the first steps, he probably claps his hands and says, “Well done!” when we ask questions.

I’m not worried if my faith changes, because I know He is just.

Austin Fischer wrote,

“People don’t abandon faith because they have doubts. People abandon faith because they think they’re not allowed to have doubts.”

Too often, our honest questions about faith are met with cold confidence and easy answers. But false certitude doesn’t result in strong faith—it results in disillusionment, or worse, in a dogmatic, overweening faith unable to see itself or its object clearly.

If the man behind the curtain says, “Don’t look! Don’t touch,” then we must think that our hope is not built on something solid. Only a true God would not be afraid of our looking. That is the God that Jesus showed us, as George Macdonald remarked.

Thanks. Blessings!

By the way, I would like to learn more about you. I am a missionary kid, from Northwest Africa (my parents are from Michigan). I love learning about other languages and cultures. My background is nondenominational/ GARB Baptist, and I have attended a very conservative. YEC Baptist church for 17 years. We live in the small town of Fremont, Michigan. The last time I went on a missions trip was 6 years ago–now that Covid restrictions are opening up again, we’ll likely go again.



to treat others like you want to be treated is a selfish outlook on life and sadomasochism does not work on everyone.

Love your neighbour as yourself refers not to oneself but your family/tribe, e.g. those you would lay down your life for, as:

Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends"

and one can not do that for oneself.

I’m not sure how exceptions to a rule disqualify a rule. They don’t in my book. We all want to be treated fairly (those of us who are sane and not full of ourselves). It’s good practice to treat others the same.

Don’t forget:

What good is it if you only love those who love you?


Love your enemies.


The parable of the Good Samaritan.


if someone strikes you on one cheek, turn the other.

Anyone can disagree with Jesus if they want to. His message was rather simple at times. Following it has always been the hard part.



I’ve given up struggling with info like this. A good friend died in the foulest of ways two weeks ago. A pillar of the church. From necrotizing fasciitis. Leaving a shattered widow and two lovely kids. You cannot imagine the stench as he was eaten alive.

Anyone got a theology of suffering? That doesn’t blame the sufferer? Or excuse God? Especially while He’s off intervening for those worth loving?

Anything I can share with his widow a week tomorrow?

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Silent tears are good.


So sorry for your loss and for your friend’s family’s loss. I lost a couple of friends to Covid, and still it is painful at times.
We have been studying Job, and while no good answers are given, his friends did the right thing at first to just be there and listen. Sharing the pain helps you bear it.