A couple things WW . . .I know I frustrate you from time to time and sometimes I'll admit, I do it on purpose, but it's not to goad you into an argument, but it's to see if "you" believe what you're saying, or if your just repeating something you've dug up in your research that someone else stated.
So, I know a while back you would claim you're an atheist, is that still true?
And two, and a little more closer to our contentional line . . . I was a bit surprised at your last post where you stated you're more prone to look for patterns. Because many of my points of contention with you haven't been about pattern, but about definition of a word. But because of your emphasis of the importance of defining the word before constructing the pattern, that kind of explains itself as to why I didn't pick up on the fact you search for patterns.
As you well know I'm pretty much the opposite in my initial approach to Scripture . . .to be totally honest with you, I don't ever read Scripture with the conscious thinking that "okay, how can I see this differently from what is actually written?" When I read Scripture, I'll just read it like anyone else, but then stuff starts flying out of the story and I hardly ever get more than 3 or 4 verses at the most when I have to stop and address the patterns that are forming themselves. I'm not looking "for" them so much as just seeing them as they form themselves.
I don't have charts written down so I can remember the patterns or numerology or colors or whatnot. It's a river . . .when I read Scripture, it gets the river to flow . . .I can turn it off like a faucet, but I can also turn it back on again as well. And the more it matures in me, the harder it is for me not to apply it to all the conversations going around in the forum. it's kinda become a part of my personality. It's not an opinion anymore. it's not an observation or an idea, a theology or a doctrine . .. it's kinda overtaken all of that and now it's the biggest share of me and half the time, I do all I can to just hang on to where it's going.
And when you and I tie up in a thread, my responses to you aren't from personal offenses, my responses are to the message, not to the messenger.
I'm in another conversation right now on another forum that's unfortunately not UR for the most part, but I brought up 1 Corinthians 3 and asked the guy to explain to me how he sees it to read. It's the one about those who build upon the foundation of Christ using a range of different kinds of materials, be it gold, silver, hay, wood or stubble . . .all their works will be tested by fire and if they used wood or straw, they will suffer great loss but the builder will be spared . . .you know the one?
I'd never heard the argument against that and I was just curious . . .the guy came back and said it's not about unbelievers versus believers . .it's about believers only. He's reading what's literally there. He doesn't see the fact that his conclusions are contradictory to the "nature" of who God is. His mind is embracing the literal words that are there. He's got the literal definitions, but he's still very much off the mark. And "that's" my point here as well. I don't read Scripture by definition so much because my first concern is, is it in line with God's nature.
Because as I've said before in conversations such as this, the Pharisees were the elite of the elite when it came to knowing the original definitions, and they were lightyears ahead of us even moreso due to the fact that their personal history was the culture from when these things were unfolding. They had it all. But they still couldn't recognize Jesus was the Son of God and he was standing right in front of them. That's why I say I don't rely on what my mind concludes.
It's exactly as you said, if the Holy Spirit doesn't reveal to us what is being said, then we're warped from the beginning.
Would you have ever guessed when Peter saw the blanket drop in front of him with all those unclean animals and the conversation Peter had about what he can and can't eat, would you ever have guessed that it was "really" about God turing "from" the Jews "to" the Gentiles with the good news? That wasn't even hinted at in the dream. It was a huge enough deal that God was telling Peter, for the first time in Peter's religious life, that it's okay to eat a pig now! I would think "that" would have been monumental enough. But out of "that" little revelation came the fact that God was going to offer the same gift to the Gentiles that he'd offered the Jews.
Only the Holy Spirit could reveal that depth of meaning. Which again is why I pose the question . . .why rely on my mind when we already know our minds are finite and flesh? Why can't we rely solely on the sound of his voice "in" us without our minds approval as to whether the definition is accuarte or not?