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James Mace 
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Recent Comments

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

Dear outlier, it was the man who wrote the article that we are discussing who broached the interpretation of Scripture. I respond in that field of interpretation. Some are called to understand Scripture to much deeper degrees than others, and it is not pious to cause schism if you are not so called. I am called to academic ministry, and I don't castigate whatever ministry the Lord has called you to.

"But now there are many members, but one body. 21 And the eye cannot say to the hand, 'I have no need of you'; or again the head to the feet, 'I have no need of you'" (1 Cor 12:20-21). What that means is that those who call themselves Christians should not be saying we don't need some other Christians. If you already understood that, then it would have been pious to practice it.

3 likes, 6 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 5:29 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

Dear William, you hit the nail on the head. While it sounds very nice to just say "love all human beings," the church cannot produce such lovers when we take away the means by which such formation is meant to occur--the school of love which the Church is constituted to be. Thus we must restore the pre-Constantinian nature of the Church as presented in Scripture and the early Church.

The Dual Love Command of love for God and love for fellow Christian will enable greater function of the Holy Spirit in a synergistic snowball shaping us into the kind of people who can love not only those in the renewed humanity of the Church but also even those who are enemies to her. But if we continue with our current theological foundation of sand, then we will no better accomplish our commission nor stewardship as humanity is intended.

3 likes, 7 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 5:10 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

Dear Pat Lynch, I understand the position pronounced above by Benedict, but your characterizing what you pasted as "exegesis" in which he "argues for" a position is inaccurate. He does not do other than pronounce conclusions above, not present evidences as to how he arrived at his agreement with a traditional interpretation of other exegesis and argumentation not here seen. I'd be happy to discuss this with him if we could have him join in, but, well, that's not going to happen.

Dear SkyPilot, it seems your argument is that, since the Samaritan existed on the margins, outcast by exclusivist Judaeans, that therefore he cannot be a member of the inclusive Israel which Jesus is in process of restoring. That is poor illogic. For Luke-Acts properly recognizes that pious Samaritans like the one in the Luke 10:30-35 reworking of 2 Chronicles 28:8-15 are part of Israel. Jesus uses him as an example of someone who obeys the Torah of Israel from Lev 19:18. You say the lawyer asked who is his neighbour; Jesus got him to admit it was the Samaritan, and this is the theology of Luke-Acts (as seen in the Acts 8 reunification of Samaria with Judah when they received the Holy Spirit--cf. Ezekiel 37). I hope you don't let some kind of political affiliation/agenda (if you have one) keep you from hearing the word of God by just repeating tradition.

4 likes, 11 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 4:42 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

Dear Pscyclepath, that last unreferenced quote you make is not in Scripture. The closest thing to it is from Galatians 6:10, concluding the Gal 5:14-6:10 pericope about which I just had an international biblical theology conference here at St. Andrews last week.

Most unfortunately, if you are paraphrasing Gal 6:10, you ignore the second part of the verse in a sinful manner that distorts it in a way to support Humanistic universalizing ideology removing all distinctions between the renewed humanity and the portion of humanity that has not yet been renewed in Christ.

Here is Gal 6:10, "So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith." This is the only place that in any way can general benevolence to all humanity be said to enter into Paul's writing. Yet that is by no means an emphasis, for it concludes the entire section emphasizing love of Christians for other Christians. That is what Paul is teaching. He throws in what can be seen as a concessive statement to perform some kind of benevolence toward non-Christians, but that occurs within a huge discussion of focussing on the greater requirement to love Christians.

The Greek adverb "malista" is translated "especially" above. It also conveys such concepts as "primarily, above all, of first importance." It is the loving communitarian solidarity of the Church as a corporate incarnation of the Trinitarian image that is at stake.

Jesus prayed "that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. 22 "The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; 23 I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me" (John 17:21-23).

We thus sacrifice our primary evangelistic witness to the world when we fail to love fellow Christians. Leaping straight over the primary love we are to show in the Church, thinking it is unimportant as long as we distribute goodies to unbelievers, is neither biblically laudable nor empowering the Church to be able to love non-Christians.

There are so many problems with short-sighted (albeit well-intentioned) Christian socialism that I cannot even list them all here. The only way to fulfill the aboriginal Creational intent for humanity over the long run is to let Scripture tell us what we must do. We dare not follow distortions of Scripture out of compassionate but ignorant motives. For true compassion lies in allowing God to best work through his people according to the guidance he has given us in Scripture (and other epistemological factors, of course).

4 likes, 16 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 3:02 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

Dear outlier, BTW I see you follow another distortion of Scripture common to the new Socialists when you abuse Matthew 25. For it clearly shows in both the immediate co-text as well as implicitly from the surrounding cultural context (including the Old Testament intertextual preparation of a culture so we could understand what Jesus would say and do), that Jesus says precisely what you say he did not.

You asserted: "Jesus did not say 'I was a hungry Jew, a thirsty Jew, a naked Jew, a Jew in prison.'" Well, in fact, that is exactly what he said when you bother to read the rest of the story (a sinful shortcoming just like Mr. Lindsay committed re Luke 10).

Matt 25:40 identifies just who the recipients of voluntarily loving economic koinonia are, and they are fellow covenant members of the Israelite community: "The King will answer and say to them, 'Truly I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.'"

Jesus is "the Son of Man" (Matt 25:31) who is the King in the account you are abusing. The brothers of the King of Israel are Israelites and not those who are rejecting the rule of the King of Israel.

Once again we see a parallel teaching to the loyal Samaritan of Luke 10, that of loving aid to fellow covenant members, that is being currently distorted by Crusading socialist zealots in an anti-Christian cause wrongly self-justified by abusing Scripture. And this, like Lindsay's related views, also removes the distinction between the renewed humanity in the Church and as-yet unredeemed humanity. While this conforms to the Humanist heresy of the Universal Brotherhood of Man, it is not biblical and instead subverts the mission of God to redeem the world.

Re socialist Christians, I make analogous agreement with Paul "about them that they have a zeal for God, but not in accordance with knowledge" (Rom 10:2). "Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment" (James 3:1).

4 likes, 18 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 2:34 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

O thou outlier, if you loved Scripture as much as hated other political factions, then you would less incarnate the kind of divisiveness Jesus opposed and more incarnative of the divine Word of life, light, and love in Jesus Christ.

4 likes, 17 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 2:02 PM

Re: “Sunday school is in session: Republicans and the Good Samaritan

I see that William D Lindsey can post about social debates over the government and attempt to justify his posiiton with Scripture, but I also see that he doesn't even know the part of Scripture under discussion. He repeatedly based his exegesis of Luke 10:25-37 upon the presence of a "lawyer" in the story of vv. 30-35, when there is not one. There is a Levite, which has a whole different dynamic from the "lawyer" eisegeted into the text. How can you think someone like that who doesn't even look at the text can make his political theology, however rhetorically eloquent, a biblical one?

In fact we see that the political theology proffered by the author and his bulldog is not biblical but anti-christian. (By way of introduction, I'm getting my PhD at St. Andrews in this pericope of the Samaritan and the Second Great Commandment as a theological foundation for global civilization.)

The heresy of Marxism and similar ideologies like the old Christian Socialist movement and modern derivatives fail to discern any distinction between the Church and the world when it comes to political theology. Often they find supposed biblical justification for this in the Samaritan story of Luke 10:30-35, mistakenly interpreting it as Jesus' supposed universalization of Israel's internal actions outward to still-fallen humanity. This abuse of Scripture is then taken in tandem with an unchristian desire to forcibly redistribute other people's money--all of which is "justified" under the Crusading rubric of alleged divine intent (much like the lawyer in Luke 10 sought to do in order "to justify himself").

Thus they establish a false religion creating an idolatrous enslavement to a secular state and drawing people away from Christ while destroying a just society by creating both resentment among those from whom they steal wealth under false pretenses concomitantly enslaving recipients of secularist government largesse from the blasphemous god-state. The Samaritan story of Luke 10:25-37 teaches covenant loyalty among the people of God, which includes voluntary wealth stewardship for the sake of other covenant members. It does not justify empowering a non-Christian government to arrogate these divine duties to itself, redefining them as practical Marxist heresy.

4 likes, 19 dislikes
Posted by James Mace on 07/15/2012 at 1:31 PM


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