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Christ and forgiveness of sins. The Jonah and Nineveh problem.

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posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 02:03 PM
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So I got to thinking about the book of Jonah and how God told Jonah to go to Nineveh and warn them of the coming destruction if they don't repent. Long story short Jonah flees from God, giant fish gets him and spits him up at Nineveh and he reluctantly warns the people there:



1 Then the word of the LORD came to Jonah a second time: 2 “Go to the great city of Nineveh and proclaim to it the message I give you.”

3 Jonah obeyed the word of the LORD and went to Nineveh. Now Nineveh was a very large city; it took three days to go through it. 4 Jonah began by going a day’s journey into the city, proclaiming, “Forty more days and Nineveh will be overthrown.” 5 The Ninevites believed God. A fast was proclaimed, and all of them, from the greatest to the least, put on sackcloth.

6 When Jonah’s warning reached the king of Nineveh, he rose from his throne, took off his royal robes, covered himself with sackcloth and sat down in the dust. 7 This is the proclamation he issued in Nineveh:

“By the decree of the king and his nobles:

Do not let people or animals, herds or flocks, taste anything; do not let them eat or drink. 8 But let people and animals be covered with sackcloth. Let everyone call urgently on God. Let them give up their evil ways and their violence. 9 Who knows? God may yet relent and with compassion turn from his fierce anger so that we will not perish.”

10 When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened.

-Jonah 3:1-10


Notice that they put on sackcloth, mourned, and fasted. No animal sacrifices, no shedding of blood. Yet Christians teach that God can only forgive sins through the shedding of blood, Christ being the final bloodshed needed but here God forgave Nineveh of their wickedness and didn't destroy them.

If he can simply forgive sins as above why go through coming down as a man and dying? What sense does that make, it contradicts what happened at Nineveh.




posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 02:08 PM
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reply to post by TinFoilHatMan55
 


Hey - My name is Jonah! (Now actually begins to read the thread)

Ah yeah, that story. I always imagined a very different ending, where Jonah gets kicked around in Ninevah smelling like the inside of a fish - no one listens, he eventually gets thrown out of the city and has to watch it burn under the fierce angry God's will.

Sounds more realistic, considering the above stated God is "fierce and angry", Jonah smells really bad during the time, and people never listen to the hippy telling everyone to "change their ways, man, like put this cloth sack on and sit in the dirt with me". Nah, not reality.

This story was in vain, I think, hoping that the influence of the Bible would later cause whole city's to bow down before their civilization crumbled due to corruption.
edit on 11-12-2010 by ThinkingCap because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 02:25 PM
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You question is based on a misunderstanding of the plan of salvation. The blood of Jesus was shed to cover God's people Past, Present and Future.
Additionally, It must also be understood that at this time God's chosen nation Israel was in sin and idolatry. The nation was divided and at times at war one with the other. There was little of the might, power and grace of God to be seen in them. Both Israel in the north and Judah in the south were practicing the sin of idolatry. But God will always provide himself a witness.
Further, it was a rebuke to proud and self centered Israel who thought they the chosen people had eternal life as a birth right. God in this case was shunning them and saving the most wicked nation on the face of the earth and Israel's arch enemy. Jesus said, that he came not, "to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance." Israel in their own self righteousness rejected God's righteousness. They would not allow God to bless them and restore His fellowship to them. Thus God went to the hated, Gentiles and saved a whole city of them.
There is also the possibility that it was done just so Jesus could say "The men of Nineveh shall rise up in judgment with this generation, and shall condemn it: because they repented at the preaching of Jonas; and, behold, a greater than Jonas is here" (Matthew 12:41)



posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 03:00 PM
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I thought that Jesus was sacrificed for the Gentiles. The Jews were bound to the Law under the Torah and they were decendents of the Jewish. I don't claim to understand it all and may be off track big time. But as far and the blood and body of Christ, the sacrifice which is done in the Catholic church with Bread and Wine were done in rememberance of Jesus and not for the forgiveness of sin. You still have to repent of the evil ways. And the New Testament about the time of Jesus here is for the Gentiles which the Jewish faith doesn't believe or go by.




posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 03:22 PM
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Originally posted by spirit_horse
I thought that Jesus was sacrificed for the Gentiles.
How many apostles were gentiles? They were all saved by the blood of Jesus. How many of those at Pentecost were gentiles? They were all saved by the blood of Jesus.


The Jews were bound to the Law under the Torah and they were decendents of the Jewish.
The purpose of the law was to underscore our need for salvation by the blood of Jesus. No person ever kept the law except Jesus, thus they were all sinners and condemed under the law.


I don't claim to understand it all and may be off track big time. But as far and the blood and body of Christ, the sacrifice which is done in the Catholic church with Bread and Wine were done in rememberance of Jesus and not for the forgiveness of sin.
Catholicism is not Christianity. That is a whole other thread though.


You still have to repent of the evil ways. And the New Testament about the time of Jesus here is for the Gentiles which the Jewish faith doesn't believe or go by.
There is only one way. Jesus is the way, the truth and the life.


Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me



posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 05:01 PM
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reply to post by TinFoilHatMan55
 
TinFoilHatMan,

There is no doubt at all but that they kept up the ordinances, as they were very much into that even though they had become corrupt. They had sacrificed a lamb morning and evening continually and this was a symbol of the true Lamb that would take away and atone for their sins.

Nu 28:3 And thou shalt say unto them, This is the offering made by fire which ye shall offer unto the LORD; two lambs of the first year without spot day by day, for a continual burnt offering.
Nu 28:4 The one lamb shalt thou offer in the morning, and the other lamb shalt thou offer at even;

That was known as the "daily" also.

Those offerings didn't take away the sins, they would be redeemed by the Blood of the coming Redeeemer but many refused Him when He came. Paul explains then about the blood.

Heb 10:4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins.

His Blood, the blood of God only could suffice.

Truthiron.



posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 06:40 PM
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Originally posted by TinFoilHatMan55
Notice that they put on sackcloth, mourned, and fasted. No animal sacrifices, no shedding of blood. Yet Christians teach that God can only forgive sins through the shedding of blood, Christ being the final bloodshed needed but here God forgave Nineveh of their wickedness and didn't destroy them.


It doesn't say that God forgave them, it says that they repented of their evil ways, and God spared them. Two different things.


If he can simply forgive sins as above why go through coming down as a man and dying? What sense does that make, it contradicts what happened at Nineveh.


Theologically, it comes down to the concept of satisfaction. If God simply ignored the fact that we sin, then he is simply acquiescing to evil -- evil wins, because it incurs no cost. Because that can't happen, in our sinning, we are, in effect, incurring a debt to God because we are offending him. Because of the nature of the insult, the amount of the debt is not one that we can repay -- it is, in essence, an infinite debt, because we offend an infinite being.

The only one who can satisfy such an infinite debt is an infinite being, which is the arrangement that God, through the sacrifice of Christ, has made for us.
edit on 11-12-2010 by adjensen because: Clarification



posted on Dec, 11 2010 @ 11:18 PM
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reply to post by sonofliberty1776
 


Thanks for the clarification!



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 07:19 AM
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reply to post by spirit_horse
 
Happy to do it. If you have any further questions, I would be happy to try to answer them as well.



posted on Dec, 12 2010 @ 02:12 PM
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reply to post by TinFoilHatMan55
 


You have to understand, that before Jesus came, that God, came to one prophet at a time. The message was always the same, that the people needed to repent. In fact, it's the one constant messsage throughout the entire bible. Even in the book of Revelation, when disaster upon disaster plagues mankind, they fail to repent. Time and time again it says, "and they repented not....".

The way a prophet becomes a prophet has been progressively revealed through the scripture. Isaiah gives one of the most detailed descriptions of the process, where he talks of an angel taking tongs, picking up a hot coal and touching it to his lips, which made him clean so that the "Word of God" could dwell/live in him. Prophets after him, all just said "The Word of God came to....(insert name of prophet here).

Then God decided to create something new. How about making a way, so that instead of just tabernacling in a temporary residence with man, how about a way to live inside all who wanted him?

So he created a new thing and he decided to call it salvation. Since he is spirit and we are here in the physical, there has to be a process for how it will happen and a connecting bridge from there to here. Jesus and his blood became the bridge. So God sent John and Jesus. John's baptism makes the outside of a person clean. Jesus' baptism cleanses the inside, with the cleansing fire, Isaiah spoke of.

God's spirit has long been equated with water. Not just any water - but living water. Living water is a gift from God for those who repent and turn to him. God said, "See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?" Through King David he said, "Be still and know that I am God."

People that don't have this gift are considered perishing and not living the quality of life intended for them from the foundation of the world.

The story of Jonah and Ninevah are but one of many, where the people need to repent together, to stop the destroyer from doing his job. Another example is when God had the Israelites put the lambs blood on their doorposts. This was done so that the destroyer could not enter.

In hindsight, everyone should be able to realize, that the work John the Baptist was given to do was to give knowledge of how to find salvation for themselves. The only thing that changed is that repenting is not done as a nation, but it's up to the individual. The way it's supposed to work is that a person decides to have this very personal relationship with God and they attempt to enter into the new promised covenant. So, you get baptized with the baptism John gave and then you earnestly repent and wait for the baptism Jesus gives. But because of a lack of understanding, most people and that includes most christians, tend to think you repent, then get the baptism John was sent to give and suddenly you are saved. Not so.

A person in only saved by being given the baptism that Jesus gives and this is backed up by scripture. Jesus said that the only sign the people of his day would get to confirm anything was the sign of Jonah (3 days in the belly of the fish and spit back out/Jesus three days dead and resurrected).

When a sign is given in the bible it usually is pointing to something happening for all to see. However, there is a greater type of sign for individuals who are in the throws of experiencing God/Jesus and these are called "miraculous signs."

It is Jesus, in his role as the Messiah who teaches of these two signs. Both are found in the Gospel of John and they are both a confirmation from God himself, that what is going on inside your physical body is not only supposed to be happening but it is confirmation from God to the individual that you are on the right path.

One of the greatest things about the true path to God is that he not only gives these two wonderful miraculous signs, we are even told the exact time they will occur. The first is found where Jesus changes water to wine, this miraculous sign always occurs on the "third day" which would be a Tuesday!

The second miraculous sign is found in the healing of the "officials son." Confirmation for the individual is that the miracle happens around the seventh hour, which is around 1:00 p.m. in the afternoon.

The old way to reach the people v's the new way to reach the individual.

Also keep in mind, that the hebrew meaning for the word Jonas is dove ( a symbol of peace). It has other meanings as well, such as, the destroyer. The variation "Jonah" means "gift from God."

I hope this helps and aides you in your studies.

edit on 12-12-2010 by Myrtales Instinct because: Spelling and Grammar.



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