Docetic Dave Green apparently takes issue with the Apostle Paul’s own account of seeing Jesus of Nazareth raised from the dead on the Damascus road. Doectic Dave writes,
Talbotism vs. Scripture
Paul considers himself to have seen Christ in the same
manner in which the others saw him; yet Paul saw Jesus
post-ascension. . . . I used to be an FP and argue that at
the ascension Jesus put off His physical resurrected body
Greg, that is an excellent point. . . . [Paul] had “seen” Jesus
in “appearance” exactly as the Apostles did in his post
resurrection appearances. In setting up this fact, clearlly
Jesus “died” and “rose from the dead” in the self-same
body and “appeared” in his resurrection body to the
witnesses, and lastly “appeared” in the same manner to
Paul: bodily. . . .
Exactly. . . The man Jesus of Nazareth died, was buried and
came back to life inclusive of His body, never to die again.
Paul claims he appeared to him just like He did to Thomas.
“Whereupon, O king Agrippa, I was not disobedient unto the heavenly vision” (Acts 26:19).
My [Docetic Dave’s] response:
This is at least the third time in less than a year that Talbotism has made this …”mistake,” and …”forgot” that Acts 26:19 was in the Bible.
The other two times were April 5, 2011 and September 26, 2011.
The “folk” theology of the RINO’s, as Dr Roger Olson puts it, comes to the forefront at PreteristCosmos. Docetic Dave, no doubt driven by his Docetic view of reality chooses to discount Paul’s own story revealing his semi-literacy when it comes to the Bible. Evidently Docetic Dave thinks Luke contradicted Paul’s witness to what occurred on the road to Damascus. However, if Docetic Dave wasn’t subject to “folk” theology, he would understand what Paul claims in 1 Cor. 9:1, “Am I not an apostle? Have I not seen Jesus our Lord?” and again as explained above Paul equates his experience to that of Thomas, “he [that be Jesus of Nazareth] appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to one untimely born, he appeared also to me” 1 Cor. 15:8,9
So what are we to make of Docetic Dave’s less than astute suggestion someone forgot a pertinent text to the discussion? Is that the case or is this simply a case of recognizing the text for what it is? Does Luke indicate Paul didn’t see Jesus of Nazareth as the Apostle himself claims? What would Luke’s motives have been to portray the encounter as he did in the three narratives as found in Acts 9:3; 22.6; 26.12?
I don’t suppose it ever occurred to the Gnostic-like RINO’s this issue has been dealt with before? I mean, besides 1 John 4:2 which states Christ Jesus “is”, not “was” God incarnate, a text btw Docetic Dave has chosen to ignore there is a reason Christianity didn’t succumb to Mr. Green’s forebears. Docetic Dave’s forebears are the first heretics Christianity confronted, known as “Christian” Gnostics. A real point of amusement is Docetic Dave and his colleagues suggestion they are providing a “refinement” of Christian eschatology.
However back to the Apostle’s testimony, something Docetic Dave apparently discounts, not only does Paul explain, “…there is one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus,” 1 Tim. 2:5. And while Mr. Green and his colleagues seem incapable of realizing dead men are still men, not “sub-human”, at least, unlike Mr. Green and his colleagues, it wasn’t lost on the ancients the distinguishing feature between a live man and a dead one was their live body. This basic feature, clearly lost on the Gnostic-like RINO’s, is no doubt what led the Apostle Paul who, as noted claims he actually saw Jesus of Nazareth to write, “Christ. For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily” Col. 2:3,9
It’s almost as if Paul knew Docetic Dave’s argument before Mr. Green ever argued his case!
Clearly the term “bodily” is lost on Docetic Dave, who somehow fails to grasp live men have live bodies. Apparently Docetic Dave thinks a live man possesses a body that isn’t human. This shouldn’t be that surprising as he classifies dead men as subhuman. Perhaps Docetic Dave will coin a new term, something to the effect of “spiritman” because we all know, according to his Gnostic-like way of viewing the world, the resurrection of the dead entails men in the presence of Christ short their bodies.
Back to the subject at hand, which is, as you will recall, Docetic Dave’s suggestion Luke contradicted Paul. So what are we left with? Is Luke contradicting Paul’s explicit testimony on the subject by relating the events he did as Mr. Green would seem to suggest? Is not only Mr. Green but Luke as well making Paul out to be a liar? Surely there has to be an answer? And indeed there is.
After providing several accounts of the literary techniques employed during the second temple period Dr. N.T. Wright, whom I don’t believe would be accused of “biblical semi-literacy” or maintaining “folk” theology explains,
“Luke’s underlying aim, and perhaps that of his original sources, seems to have been to tell the story in such a way as to align Paul with the prophets and visionaries of Israel’s history, and also (less certainly, but with strong possibility) to place him alongside penitent pagans who turned round and went in a new direction. This serves as both an apologia for Paul’s new life and work, a legitimation of him in the eyes of potentially puzzled or hostile readers, and a heightening of the dramatic tension as the story is repeated in a crescendo to accompany Paul’s progress, through riots and trials, to his eventual arrival in Rome. Luke, ever the artist, has painted a portrait, so as to bring out the features that will speak to his intended audience.”[i] Thus Luke isn’t contradicting Paul he is telling the story of the event in such a way as to maximize the impact. Dr. Wright, contradicting Docetic Dave once again,goes on to explain “The accounts [Luke’s and Paul’s] dovetail quite well. But the historical conclusion from their juxtaposition cannot be that Paul did not after all see Jesus (which neither of them say), or that he ‘saw’ Jesus only with his mind or heart (which, again, neither of them say). You can put apples and pears together and make a fruit salad; you cannot make a pork pie. Paul says that he saw Jesus, and that remains our primary historical datum.”[ii]
I think Dr. Wright’s point about the pork pie is a suggestion Mr. Green is holding onto a sow’s ear as it relates to this issue. I know, I know, we didn’t provide any scripture to back up our claim, (LOL!) nor was our claim supported by expert testimony, (ROFL!). But hey, what are purveyors of “folk” theology left to lob at the Christian point of view on the matter if not false assertions. However, what is truly interesting is that apparently Docetic Dave’s own view of things clearly calls into question the Apostle Paul’s explicit testimony on the issue. Clearly the Gnostic-like RINO’s don’t stop at calling anyone a liar! You got to wonder when the RINO’s will cease and desist from bearing false witness. Truly they could use some firsthand instruction by Thomas. Even Thomas grasped the idea, “…Touch me, and see. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see that I have.” Luke 24:39. It is a sad commentary when men will allow their traditions, as the RINO’s have done, to over-ride Scriptures clear teaching on the matter