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location Pittsburgh, PA
age 63
visits member for 10 months
seen 2 hours ago

For the last 56 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 40 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 was certified recently as a paralegal. 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) .


2d
comment Implicit Biblical References in Popular Secular Works
Yeah, I guess it's the phenomenon that is called "the dumbing down of America." By the way, I read "Confederacy of Dunces." Hated it, just hated it. I feel guilty having read it. In my opinion, it was a complete waste of time, but I slogged through it because a former professor of mine said I'd be culturally illiterate if I DIDN'T read it. How wrong he was. Don
2d
comment Implicit Biblical References in Popular Secular Works
OK. Gotcha. You might be interested in reading Allan Bloom's "The Closing of the American Mind." Though not a Christian, Bloom bemoans "how higher education has failed democracy and impoverished the souls of today's students." One reason for this failure and impoverishment is our culture's giving short shrift to the classics of literature, including the Bible. It's a good read. Don
Apr
13
comment Implicit Biblical References in Popular Secular Works
I'm not sure I understand your question. Let's say someone DOES count, for example, the # of allusions to the Bible in the "top ten" you cite (Don Quixote and Huck Finn), to what "top ten" MODERN books would you compare the older books? Doesn't a great deal depend on who the authors are? I would not expect authors who do not have a biblical worldview to allude to Scripture very much, if at all. If you were to take on this project yourself, you would probably be better off choosing 20 books--of similar genres--at random from yesteryear and from modern times (e.g., 1800-1900, and 1900-2000).
Apr
12
comment What is the “great mystery” in Ephesians 5:32?
@WalrustheCat: It's not unusual for me to delete a comment, edit it, and then re-submit it. My question--ahem--still remains: whom did John consider himself to be? What was his role as "friend of the bridegroom"? Why wouldn't he be part of the church universal? Are there two churches, as it were, with OT saints comprising one church, and NT saints comprising another? Inquiring minds want to know. Don
Apr
11
comment What is the “great mystery” in Ephesians 5:32?
@WalrustheCat: Did I say "gotcha"? Our only point of disagreement may center on our divergent interpretations of John 3:29. Whereas my interpretation sees 1) Jesus as the bridegroom; 2) the yet-to-be-created church universal as the bride; and 3) John the Baptizer as the friend of the groom who introduces Him to the world, your interpretation sees John as what? John identified with the bride. IOW, he considered himself a part of the church universal, which the apostle John later called Christ's bride (see Revelation 19, 21, and 22). IYO, whom did J the B (the "friend") consider himself 2b?
Apr
10
comment What does Jesus mean by “father” In Matthew 23:9?
@user2479: Point taken. I've edited my post accordingly. See my last two paragraphs. Thanks. Don
Apr
9
comment Jewish Captivity
I think you mean, "Did the Jews who believed in Jesus forget about the Babylonian captivity (not to mention the Hebrews' Egyptian servitude) when Jesus told them the truth would set them free"? John was just recording things as he witnessed and heard them, either by himself or via other witnesses to Jesus' public ministry.
Apr
5
comment Is dispensationalism a theological framework or a hermeneutical approach?
@user2479: Easier said than done, my friend. Scripture tells us we should rightly divide the word of truth. Take the division of Law, Prophets, and Writings. Take the concept of progressive revelation (which is probably a whole 'nother can of worms). Perspectives aren't to be shunned; they are to be embraced. Jesus Himself had a perspective, which should be perhaps the most important perspective, and one which we embrace: "the things concerning Himself" (Lk 24). No perspective is complete, but each one has something to offer, except the anti-supernatural perspective.
Apr
3
comment What is the “great mystery” in Ephesians 5:32?
@WalrustheCat: You could be right! How do you deal with 1 Corinthians 12:13? From the NET Bible at NETbible.org: "On the day of Pentecost, all 120 believers were plugged into the brand new Body of Christ—the Church—by Spirit Baptism. 1 Corinthians 12:13 —”… For in one Spirit we were ALL baptized into one body…” Permanent immersion into the body of Christ. Paul stated clearly that all had been Spirit baptized and placed permanently into the Body of Christ" (from "A Fiery Beginning," by Melanie Newton).
Mar
26
comment Does the Holy Spirit have a name
@DrFry: Good point. If you'd care to edit my answer accordingly, feel free to do so. Don P.S. If you don't have sufficient reputation yet to do so, I'll be happy to do it another time.
Mar
6
comment Exo. 34:33 - Did Moshe speak with the Israelites veiled or unveiled?
@ Daи: The answer to the OP's question is found in the first paragraph (as promised), and the answer is based on the English text in EXODUS (in the NASV Updated). The passages in Corinthians may be "WAAAY off target," as you put it, but in the tradition of the analogy of Scripture, they are certainly germane to the topic and add some interesting and instructive information as well. Don
Mar
5
comment Exo. 34:33 - Did Moshe speak with the Israelites veiled or unveiled?
@ Daи: I recommend you read the first full paragraph after footnote 78. Perhaps I'll re-word it and make it the first paragraph in my answer. Don
Mar
5
comment Are there two different types of “tongues” spoken about in the NT?
You might want to do that again, as your edits may have been erased between the time you made the edits and the time I finished my editing. Don
Mar
5
comment Are there two different types of “tongues” spoken about in the NT?
making melody to the Lord with one's heart; always being thankful for all things; and submitting to one another in the fear of Christ. (It almost goes without saying, the filling of the Spirit always comes with supernatural power and enabling in the use of our spiritual "gift mix" (C. Peter Wagner). 3) The Spirit's "intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered" is not necessarily speaking in tongues. By insisting it is, one is reading more into the text than is warranted. 4) Keeping one's "utterance from ...[disrupting] the flow of the service" is a good idea, but not biblical.
Mar
5
comment Are there two different types of “tongues” spoken about in the NT?
Good answer! +1. A couple suggestions for improvement. 1) the phrases "baptism of the Holy Spirit" and "baptized in the Holy Spirit" are not strictly biblical. True, the Spirit is "poured out," can be "received," and can "come upon" people, but people are not baptized INTO the Spirit; rather, they are baptized INTO THE NAME OF JESUS. 2) "praying in the Holy Ghost" (Jude) is not necessarily the same as praying in tongues, just as being filled with the Spirit isn't always accompanied by tongues. Being filled could be evidenced by the speaking of psalms, hymns, & spiritual songs to one another;
Mar
5
comment Does the Holy Spirit have a name
I like your "So instead of saying that the Holy Spirit has a distinct name, I think we should say that God who revealed himself to Moses and the prophets by his singular name YHWH has further revealed himself by his singular name which is 'Father, Son, Holy Spirit.'" That's an interesting way of putting it. IOW, in God, you get three for one (or Three for One), so to speak!
Mar
3
comment Why is the dividing of clothes considered the fulfillment of scripture?
@user2479: Thank you. Perhaps it bears repeating: "It's good to be back . . . I think." Don
Mar
2
comment Difference among “Word”, “word” and “Doctrine”
The same lower-case W and upper-case W apply as well to scripture, scriptures, Scripture, and Scriptures. Usually, the upper-case Scripture(s) is preceded by the article "the" and the word denotes the entire Bible (or perhaps the entire Old Testament). When we write "There is a scripture, I believe, in Exodus, chapter 21 where . . .," a lower-case S is fine. The same with "There are a number of scriptures which agree with this answer; for example, . . .." Second Timothy 4:2 uses the Word to refer to the whole of Scripture, whereas many more verses, esp. in Paul's letters, use the lower-case W.
Mar
1
comment Why would Mary and Joseph offer “turtle doves” in Luke 2:24?
Perhaps the gifts of the Magi served to "tide them over" while Joseph looked for work in an unfamiliar city. In other words, they may have sold the gifts on the open market. Perhaps eBay! (a joke)
Mar
1
comment What is the “great mystery” in Ephesians 5:32?
@PaulVargas: Yes, at least from my point of view. God declared many Old Testament saints (such as Abraham) to be righteous in His sight (Romans 4:3; Galatians 3:6; James 2:23). In other words, God imputed His righteousness to them and imputed their unrighteousness to His Son, who was the Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the world (1 Peter 1:20 KJV, and Revelation 13:8 KJV), just as He does to us today in this "dispensation of grace."