Friday, January 03, 2014

Sunk Misplaced Faith

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I am not claiming the stories below are definitely true. I am simply listing sources and will comment.

All Christian News: Januray 2, 2014

Cited:

'Pastor Tries to Walk on Water Like Jesus, Then Drowns in Front of His Congregation' 

'Unfortunately for one pastor on the West Coast of Africa, his attempt to become the second man to make this impossible feat a reality cost him his life. Pastor Franck Kabele, 35, told his congregation that he was capable of reenacting the very miracles of Jesus Christ. He decided to make it clear through way of demonstration on Gabon’s beach in the capital city of Libreville. Referencing Matthew 14:22-33, Kabele said that he received a revelation which told him that with enough faith he could achieve what Jesus was able to. According to an eyewitness, Kabele took his congregation out to the beach. He told them that he would cross the Kombo estuary by foot, which is normally a 20 minute boat ride. Sadly by the second step into the water Kabele found himself completely submerged. He never returned.'

'This is not the first incident of this nature in Africa. At Ibadon zoo in south-west Nigeria, a self-proclaimed Prophet claimed to be able to do what the Daniel of the bible did by walking into a den full of lions. Though he was warned numerous times by zoo keepers, according to NG Newspapers, the Prophet thought of them as nothing more than enemies of progress. The Prophet, with a crowd of people watching, put on a long red robe and proceeded to enter the cage full of lions. Within seconds of opening the door, the lions ripped the Prophet from flesh to bone.'

Red Pepper: January 2, 2014

Cited:

'A news organization, has reported the following unfortunate incident: “An evangelist who tried replicating Jesus’ miracle of walking on water has reportedly drowned off the western coast of Africa. Pastor Franck Kabele, 35, told his congregation he could repeat the biblical miracle, and he attempted it from a beach in Gabon’s capital of Libreville He told churchgoers he’d had a revelation that if he had enough faith, he could walk on water like Jesus,’ an eyewitness told the Glasgow Daily Record. ‘He took his congregation to the beach saying he would walk across the Komo estuary, which takes 20 minutes by boat. He walked into the water, which soon passed over his head and he never came back.’

A researcher at Florida State University believes he has a natural explanation for the account of Jesus’ miraculous walk on the surface of water — ice. Professor of Oceanography Doron Nof and the co-authors of his study theorize that a rare combination of optimal water and atmospheric conditions resulted in a unique, localized freezing phenomenon called ‘springs ice.’ This horrible incident, together with a “professor’s” response, progresses from the tragically untaught to the supremely obtuse. The Tragedy of Ignorance“‘Pastor’ Kabele” obviously was a very sincere man; but sincerity does not nullify ignorance.'

End of citations

Well, on the bright side, if the Pastor had not been baptized full immersion....

Not my position necessarily by the way, and bad joke.

The Florida State University professor attempts a natural explanation with 'springs ice'.

France writes that from the Matthew text,'the disciples groped for adequate words to express their awareness that Jesus was more than an ordinary man'.  The idea that Christ is God's Son is expressed, John 14: 33 by those in the boat.  France (2001: 240).

The idea of Christ as God the Son and deity expressed in Mathew 28 in Christ's own words, for example.

Barclay states in regard to Peter walking on water and other miraculous material that this material from Matthew has the 'flavour of sacred legend rather than fact'. Barclay (1975: 105).

Ellison is his Matthew commentary appears to take the event as actually occurring as presented in text. Peter had the permission of Jesus to walk on water. Ellison (1986: 1137).

Peter was at least temporarily the second person to walk on water, it appears.

If this miraculous, supernatural event is claimed to have a natural explanation then what about the other healings and supernatural occurrences in regard to Jesus Christ?

If this miraculous, supernatural event is claimed to have a natural explanation, then what about the resurrection and post-death appearances of Jesus Christ?

The event appears to be presented as religious history in plain literal language.

Ellison's point in regard to Peter having the permission of Jesus Christ, and therefore God the Son to walk on water is very useful and relevant here.

Rather then getting into a debate about I Corinthians 12-13 and 13:10 in regard to the issue of the existence of supernatural gifts ceasing after the closing of the New Testament canon, or their existence until the 'perfect' God the Son, returns; the issue of the African Pastor supposedly attempting to walk on water as well as the supposed story of the foolish supposed 'prophet' and the lions, is crucially an issue of receiving permission and sanction from God or not to work the miraculous.

I reason in both cases, again if they actually occurred, the permission was assumed and the power to commit such supernatural acts assumed with a misplaced faith.

It was never divinely granted. I reason it rarely is and rarely has been throughout human history and it was not in these cases.

A sunk (sunken) misplaced faith in the walking on water case.

BARCLAY, WILLIAM (1976) The Letters of James and Peter, Philadelphia, The Westminster Press. 

ELLISON, H.L. (1986) ‘Matthew’, in F.F. Bruce (ed.), The International Bible Commentary, Grand Rapids, Zondervan.

FRANCE, R.T. (1985) Matthew, Grand Rapids, IVP, Eerdmans.

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