2,925 reputation
218
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location Pittsburgh, PA
age 64
visits member for 1 year, 4 months
seen 7 hours ago

For the last 57 years, I have been a practicing Christian (liberally conservative and evangelical). Should any posting I make to any Stack Exchange website pique your curiosity as to the what and why of my beliefs, feel free to communicate with me at drlarter@yahoo.com. I do not claim to have all the answers--let alone all the questions(!), but I would consider it a privilege to discuss Christianity with you in a rational and civilized fashion.

My wife (a native Egyptian and Christian) and I have been married over 41 years. We have two grown children who have flown the coop, making us empty nesters.

I have a Master's degree in Speech Communications and three years of doctoral studies in Rhetorical Theory at the University of Pittsburgh. After a brief stint as a teacher of public speaking, I embarked on a couple of different and totally divergent pursuits by owning and operating two small businesses.

Tired of being in business for myself, I went back to school at Duquesne University's Paralegal Institute in Pittsburgh, where I received a General Practice Certificate last December (2013). I am currently looking for employment in that field, and would like to round out the last stage of my work life in some area of jurisprudence.

A rhetorical perspective is almost as natural to me as breathing. Overt and covert attempts at persuasion, whether written or spoken, are my legitimate targets for analysis, evaluation, and criticism. Of particular interest to the EL&U web site contributors would be, with some adaptations and modifications, the traditional canons of speech: style (elocutio), invention (inventio), organization (dispositio), memorability (memoria), and delivery (pronuntiatio or actio) .


Feb
7
comment Who is the referent of 'us' (ἡμῖν) in Matthew 3:15 if not merely Jesus and John?
One "argument" in favor of the Trinitarian reference is that Jesus knew to whom He was referring, but neither Matthew nor John (nor whoever their sources were) knew. They could simply have been quoting Jesus accurately. One danger in an overly rigorous hermeneutic is assuming every author knew exactly at the time of his writing--whether a year ago or one thousand years ago--the full import of both what he wrote through his own powers of invention and what he quoted as coming from someone else. Moses, for example, had no idea what God meant when He told Moses about the serpent bruising the heel
Feb
7
comment Who is the referent of 'us' (ἡμῖν) in Matthew 3:15 if not merely Jesus and John?
A hypothesis not not mentioned in your brainstorming list could be that the referent for the "us" Jesus used was the Godhead. In context, all three persons of the trinity were present at His baptism (the Holy Spirit as a dove, the Father's voice of approbation, and Jesus as the Son of Man and Son of God). Similarly, in John 3, albeit with different pronouns, Jesus said to Nicodemus, "Truly, truly I say to you, WE speak of what WE know and testify of what WE have seen, and you do not accept OUR testimony" (v.11). The we and our could've been used "editorially" but not necessarily. Selah.
Feb
7
comment Who is the referent of 'us' (ἡμῖν) in Matthew 3:15 if not merely Jesus and John?
Forgive me, but your last paragraph, particularly the parenthetical material, sounds (ironically) like a rant. I'm making an observation, not a judgment. Don
Feb
4
comment Hebrews 9:12 - Did Jesus Christ offer his blood in heaven?
@JLB: See my previous comment. I DID watch the video. Don
Feb
4
comment Hebrews 9:12 - Did Jesus Christ offer his blood in heaven?
@JLB: No, I did watch the video, at least until the part where it stated the pope was the antichrist. My comments to you, above, were written after I watched the video. When the video started with the identity of the antichrist, a red flag went up into my mind. As for Ron Wyatt, he seems sincere and all, but even if he did discover the Ark of the Covenant, I have to ask, "So what?" Recently a boat was exposed (I guess because of evaporation?) near the shore of the Sea of Galilee. Some folks suggest it could've been one of the disciple's boats. OK, even IF Jesus sat in the boat: so what? Email
Feb
4
comment Hebrews 9:12 - Did Jesus Christ offer his blood in heaven?
the Roman "cat o' nine tails" which tore the flesh off his body prior to His crucifixion. What about the blood on the Roman spear that pierced His side. What about the blood that mixed with the soil at Calvary and was eventually washed away by rain? Do you see where I'm going with this? As important as Jesus' actual, literal, factual, and bloody death was and ever will be, the truth of what He accomplished through His death both literally and symbolically, will always surpass in importance what is only literal. Both are important, but isolating the physical misses the bigger picture.
Feb
4
comment Hebrews 9:12 - Did Jesus Christ offer his blood in heaven?
@JLB: I'll address your questions more fully via email. I will say here, however, that becoming too literal in the meaning you--or anyone--assigns to the blood of Jesus is simply a place you do not want to go. It is a tangent, and in its literalness misses the symbolic Truths of which the literal truths speak. Symbolic Truth always, it seems to me, has precedence over literal truth, or what can often be referred to as facts. Did Jesus, for example, spill literal blood at Calvary? Yes. Did He gather up that blood after His death and carry it to heaven. What about the blood that was left on
Feb
4
revised Hebrews 9:12 - Did Jesus Christ offer his blood in heaven?
removed a couple unnecessary thats
Feb
3
revised What would Jesus' qualifications have been for a “worthy” person for the disciples to stay within the Matthew 10 narrative?
provided an apt addendum
Feb
3
comment Why would the disciples have rebuked people for bringing infants to Jesus?
@JLB: Thanks for your "vote of confidence"! Don
Feb
3
revised Why would the disciples have rebuked people for bringing infants to Jesus?
relatively minor errata were corrected.
Feb
2
revised What would Jesus' qualifications have been for a “worthy” person for the disciples to stay within the Matthew 10 narrative?
minor grammatical fix-up
Feb
1
comment In Heb 6:4, What does it mean to “again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame”
@user2479: I plan to post an answer to the second part of JLB's question, which concerns the "falling away" phenomenon addressed in Hebrews 6. As for me, I'm a four-and-a-half point Calvinist, and I may never be a full five-pointer. By the same token, however, I'm not a gung-ho Arminian, either. More on that, later. Don
Feb
1
answered In Heb 6:4, What does it mean to “again crucify to themselves the Son of God and put Him to open shame”
Feb
1
comment How does the act of “foot washing” lead to the act of “sexual intercourse”?
@swasheck: But then sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, and feet is just feet! Jesus told us, after all, to wash one another's feet! (Just so you know I'm being facetious, I'll use what the young people use in their texting: LOL.)
Jan
30
revised Why was Zacchaeus saved according to Jesus?
major reorganizing and paring down.
Jan
27
answered What would Jesus' qualifications have been for a “worthy” person for the disciples to stay within the Matthew 10 narrative?
Jan
26
comment What is an “anachronism” in Biblical Hermeneutics?
@user2479: Gotcha. Thanks for the explanation! Don
Jan
26
comment What is an “anachronism” in Biblical Hermeneutics?
@user2479: You're welcome, I'm sure. I also agree with you--I think . . .. I can't, however, seem to unpack your "brush that we tar anything that doesn't suggest postmodernism." Care to expatiate? Thanks.
Jan
24
comment What is an “anachronism” in Biblical Hermeneutics?
@David: In saying Jesus' humanity "added not a whit to His essence as God the Son," I am simply appealing to the clear biblical teaching that God is immutable. "New" or "novel" experiences in time and space change us; but God, never. God the Son wore His humanity; He inhabited His humanity (John: "And the Word became flesh and DWELT [or made His dwelling, skēnoō, among us,] and we saw His glory"), Jesus' body was, figuratively, the Tent of Meeting (the Tabernacle), as it were, through whom sinners could approach God, once being cleansed by faith by the literal blood of His sacrifice.