The Spirits in Prison

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by Joshuastone7, Mar 31, 2019.

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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    "He was put to death in the flesh but made alive in the spirit. And in this state he went and preached to the spirits in prison." (1Pt 3:18,19)

    I occasionally consider subjects in Scripture I have not fully researched; and, this evening, this is the one I decided to contemplate. As I so often do, I will write a post to record my thoughts, as I work through them with you. Any suggestions appreciated. :)

    I notice a paradox I have not, as of yet, been able to determine a solution.

    The text reads: After Jesus resurrection, he goes to the Spirits in prison, in order to preach to them.

    Now, the part of the discussion from first Peter I am focusing on, is the next verse.

    "Because they formerly did not obey, when God’s patience waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was being prepared." (1Pt 3:20) (ESV)

    "Who had formerly been disobedient when God was patiently waiting in Noah’s day, while the ark was being constructed." (1Pt 3:20) (NWT)

    "To those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built." (1Pt 3:20) (NIV)

    Verse twenty indicates these angels were disobedient while the ark was being built, and God was patiently waiting for its completion. Why does the text seem to indicate these angels were disobedient only after the Ark had begun to be built?

    The fallen angels would have already had sinned years before the Ark had even begun to be built; for, we know they had taken wives before God decided to bring the flood, according to Genesis six.

    As well, why does the scripture say, "the spirits who had formally been disobedient?" The Greek word used here is pote, meaning formally, when; or once.

    Then that begs the question of why Jesus would preach to them. If these were the angels that had taken wives, they were already reserved for judgement day into Tartarus (or Tartaroo); so, I can't find a justification for Jesus speaking with them. Jesus preaching work was redemption through him; was it not? Judgement of the fallen angels is reserved for judgement day, so his message to them couldn't have been one of judgement.

    "Certainly God did not refrain from punishing the angels who sinned, but threw them into Tarʹta·rus, putting them in chains of dense darkness to be reserved for judgment." (2Pt 2:4) (NWT)

    The angels that took wives were not thrown into the abyss; therefore, they would have already known Jesus conquered the world. So why would he preach to them?

    Why doesn't Peter use the same word in 1Pt 3:19, as he does in 2Pt 2:4 when speaking of those angels that were thrown into Tartarus? Instead he uses phulaké, meaning a watching, keeping guard; a guard, or prison.

    Is it me, or does it almost seem as though Peter is saying that there were a separate group of angels that somehow disobeyed God once the Ark had begun to be built? It's almost as though he is saying there were angels that disagreed with Jehovah's choice to destroy the world at that time.

    Of course I could be completely wrong, and I'm probably just missing something; so, that's why I'm at that point of attempting to work it out...lol

    Phulaké also carries the meaning of keeping watch. What if these angels that sinned while God was patiently waiting for the Ark to be built, were simply keeping watch, and not in a prison? The text could be read as though these angels only disobeyed once (pote), after the Ark had begun to be built, and then were simply keeping watch (Phulaké).

    This could provide the answer to why Jesus preached to them. Maybe these were still redeemable?

    I don't know, I'm just thinking out loud. I need to consider this all further. But the fact remains, the text clearly seems to be saying these ones disobeyed while the Ark was being built.

    Please provide your thoughts.

    All love...
     
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    Yes AJ, they were still disobeying Jehovah, and going after the flesh of women. Likely killing whomever they chose.

    In the account when mankind and the “sons of God” became corrupted, God decided to put an end to it. It states; “And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart. So the Lord said, “I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth, both man and beast, creeping thing and birds of the air, for I am sorry that I have made them.” ( Gen 6:6-7 NKJV ) Think how heartbroken God was at that point in time.

    Before this, the Lord said: “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, for he is indeed flesh; yet his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.” ( Gen 6:3 NKJV ) Some so called scholars say this is where God set the lifetime of man to 120 years. Not so! The 120 years was the time that these “mighty spirits” would be allowed to live. This was the time period that Noah was building the ark. Remember this: How many were involved in the building of the ark? Eight! The ark was not a “ship”, “boat”, or “Ocean Liner”. It was a mathematically proportioned box. It’s length, three hundred cubits, width 50 cubits, height 30 cubits. ( Gen 6:15 NKJV ) A cubit = approximately 18 inches. It was a measure from the elbow to the tip of the middle finger of the hand. So, depending on how big a man was, the cubit varied. Generally, 18 inches is the accepted length. The translation from Hebrew to a common word in other languages is “gopherwood” but, it likely is not gopherwood. ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gopher_wood )

    The main idea here is that Jehovah set a time limit, or death sentence on disobedient mankind at that time. And, those spirit creatures/angels. Remember what he said in verses 6-7? If Noah had not found favor with God, we would not be here now!


     
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    Cristo

    Cristo Member

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    Hi...

    This would add support to the notion that Adam & Eve are also redeemable from disobeying. Jesus was a PERFECT man and his death would cover Adam & Eves perfect life in payment. Also to note Jesus was a spirit creature who gave up his existence in heaven to become a man and then die. Perhaps this is also enough to cover the sins of angels as well.

    To cover sin a sacrifice is needed. Jesus not only sacrificed his life here on earth but also his heavenly one. When he no longer existed for three days, both the physical AND the spiritual realms would be covered by his death, would they not?

    Just a thought...
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Greetings brothers, and may His spirit continue to show through you.

    I have also discussed this subject with another brother outside the forum, and I thank you too for your assistance brother...

    You know, I've actually been taking my time with this one...lol I would have normally posted several times by now. ;) But, after carefully considering all possibilities, this has come down to a simple fact, as it always does. The answer truly is in the original Greek, and Hebrew.

    So let's look closer at 1 Peter 3:18-20.

    The beginning of the nineteenth verse reads, "en ho kai." We translate this as, "in which also." These words are speaking of our Lord being in the spirit. So, therefore, it is saying, it is in the spirit form of our Lord, in which Peter is speaking of.

    To continue on: "tois en phylake pneumasin poreutheis ekeryxen." This part of the verse is translated as such, "he went and preached unto the spirits in prison." These appear to be the same spirits Peter speaks of in 2Pt 2:4, "For if God did not spare the angels having sinned, but having cast them down to Tartarus, in chains of gloomy darkness, delivered them, being kept for judgment."

    Now, here is the important part to pay attention to. The verse goes on to read, "apeithesasin pote." Translated usually as, "having disobeyed at one time." Peter changes the time period he is talking about right here. He goes from speaking about the spirits that are currently in prison, to discussing the time period in which they were disobedient. We know this because of Peters continued discussion.

    "hote apexedecheto he tou Theou makrothymia en hemerais Noe." This section of the verse reads, "when God was waiting in longsuffering in the days of Noah." Therefore, what Peter is saying is: Jesus, as a spirit, went and proclaimed/preached to these angels when they were sinning during the time of Noah. Peter only mentions the fact that they currently are in prison, before ultimately going on to discuss the time in which they were disobedient. Therefore, in fact, what this scripture discusses is, Jesus' prehuman existence as a spirit. The context of time Peter is speaking of tells us that it was not into the prison in which Jesus went and preached, but that he preached to these spirits at the time in which they were disobedient.

    Now the verses go on to tell us just how long the pre-human Jesus preached unto the spirits of Noah's day, "kataskeuazomenes kibotou." Translated as, "of the arks construction." There is no way around the fact that the original Greek, along with Genesis 6, intends to tell us that the time period in which God waited, was while the ark was under construction. There just simply is no text to indicate otherwise. It says he waited for the construction of the ark, and there's nothing to indicate this was before it's announcement.

    So, with this in mind, here is a more accurate translation of 18-20.

    "Having been put to death indeed in the flesh, however, being made alive in the spirit, in which also to the spirits in prison he went to preach when they were disobedient; while God was waiting in longsuffering in the days of Noah for the ark's construction." (Joshua Stone)

    "Pote apeithesasin," is translated here properly as, "when they were disobedient." Pote can also be read as, "in times past," or "formally." Pote is a time period something happens, as seen here: "But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luk 22:32)

    This actually makes since now, and answers all of the paradoxes. Once they were imprisoned awaiting their death sentence, there simply is no reason to speak to them. No courtesy would be paid to them; but, instead were warned of their coming judgement before the flood. That was Jesus' message to them.

    Moses was known as a preacher, "and did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a preacher of righteousness, with seven others, when He brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly." (2Pt 2:5) So therefore, there would have been a preaching work leading up to the flood, just as there is today. And it was our Lord who had the lead in that preaching work among mankind, during the building of the ark.

    In Genesis 6, the 120 years were the time period given to build the ark. Therefore the ark had begun to be built twenty years before Noah's 500th year, and the birth of his sons. Therefore, the preaching work before the flood was 120 years.

    As well, these spirits were not thrown into the abyss, they were thrown into tataroo, or tartarus, which carries the idea of being dejected from Heaven, in chains that cannot be redeemed. This was their sentence, and they received the death penalty at the time of their imprisonment. Therefore, they were not placed in an abyss of inactivity such as we know Satan will be thrown in. So, they would have already been aware that Jesus conquered the world. But regardless, Jesus conquering the world had nothing to do with them, they were already condemned to death in the days of Noah. There would be absolutely nothing to declare to these angels after Jesus' resurrection. They were tried and given the death sentence at the flood, period. They have been awaiting the death sentence ever since.

    Through all love in Christ Jesus, to you brothers.
     
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    Here is something else to think about that backs up what we agree on. What had these “spirits” done? They took on human bodies in order to mate with the women, which created these “nephilim”( naphal ) . Here is where the wrong translation comes into play. The Greek Septuagint translated this word as “giants”. It is more accurate in Hebrew as either “fallen” or “fellers”. That last one is not to be taken as a “southern accent” for a group of men. As it says, “Those were the mighty men. . .” And, they were fallen from heaven.

    The Nephilim were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of men, and they bore children to them. Those were the mighty men who were of old, men of renown.” ( Gen 6:4 NASB ) These, the children of the “sons of God” are the ones who would be destroyed in the flood. The “sons of God” were sent to tartaroo ( prison ).

    Those days” is speaking of the time period when the sons of God were doing their dirty deeds. “And also afterward” is the time period after God stopped the angels/sons from carrying on having children with the human women. But, the children of these spirits had children. They were grand children and great grand children of the Nephilim. All of these were destroyed in the flood.

    Here is another thing to think about. The “sons of God” were brothers of Christ Jesus. ( John 1:1-4 ) He helped with His Father in their creation. How heart breaking was that, for Father and Son? That is why it is written; “The Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.” ( Gen 6:6 NASB )

     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Yes indeed, the time period mentioned in first Peter 3:20 is the time in which they were disobedient. And, it was at that point they were judged to be so, and condemned into chains, awaiting their death sentence on the day of the execution of judgement. They would have been proclaimed this information at that time. Being on earth as humans, they would not have known Jehovah's decree of 120 years, unless they were told.

    This is why the only way to fix all paradoxes within the text is to read it in the manner as Christ Jesus being in the form of a spirit, went and proclaimed to those angels, their coming judgement while they were disobedient in the days of Noah, when God was patiently awaiting the construction of the ark. The time he preached to them has to have been during Noah's day. This is the context of time in which Peter is speaking of. It makes absolutely no sense to say Jesus preached to them after his resurrection. It doesn't fit the context, nor any biblical precedence.

    Please note the position of the semicolon below, "when they were disobedient;" belongs in the context of Jesus preaching, and brought all together after the semicolon, into the time period in which all of this took place, in the days of Noah, and the arks construction.

    "Having been put to death indeed in the flesh, however, being made alive in the spirit, in which also to the spirits in prison he went to preach when they were disobedient; while God was waiting in longsuffering in the days of Noah for the ark's construction." (Joshua Stone)
     
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    Tricky Sam

    Tricky Sam New Member

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    Key here seems to simply be that "judgment" is not necessarily code for "Punishment because all judged are automatically guilty." ... but that they could be preached to and some may be judged as redeemable.

    ... then again, a rather tinfoil hat theory I've heard is based on Matthew 24:37-39 "But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be." ... some conspiracy theorists speculate that the fallen angels (and perhaps nephilim) that soiled the earth before the flood may be released as part of our great tribulation. Revelation 9 does specify the "shaft of the abyss" will be opened.
     
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    Cristo

    Cristo Member

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    In fact it makes absolute sense to say that Jesus did preach to them after his resurrection.

    (1Ti 3:16) . . .Indeed, the sacred secret of this godly devotion is admittedly great: ‘He was made manifest in flesh, was declared righteous in spirit, appeared to angels, was preached about among nations, was believed upon in [the] world, was received up in glory.’

    (1Pe 3:22) 22 He is at God’s right hand, for he went his way to heaven; and angels and authorities and powers were made subject to him.

    Perhaps it doesn't fit any precedence because it IS the precedence. Upon his death and resurrection he received authority over all things on earth and in the heavens. Thus, upon receiving this authority he went and spoke to the angels. Perhaps telling them the same thing he told the disciples.

    (Mt 28:18) 18 And Jesus approached and spoke to them, saying: “All authority has been given me in heaven and on the earth..."


    It is not necessary to rewrite bible scriptures according to how you think it should be written in order to understand it.


    _
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    I didn't rewrite anything; I translated the original Greek, into English. There is no capitalization nor punctuation in the original Greek, therefore, I simply corrected the original intent within the originally intended context.

    The word used for "angels" in 1Tim 3:16, is the word aggelos. This word is only used to describe a messenger from God. The demons, or those of the imprisoned Spirits are never described as messengers of God, ie: angles. Over 150 times in the NT, aggelos is used to describe spiritual beings created by God to serve His plan; meaning, heavenly beings in his service. In only a handful of times is the word used to describe humans, when they were serving as messengers of the true God. Never are the demons ever described as angels.

    This scripture again speaks of aggelos, messengers from God.

    This statement from you is in error my friend. This world still remains in the hands of Satan, until the day our Lord is given rulership over the Earth. He currently has rulership of the heavenly realm, and one day will obtain that of this world. Hence why the angels worship and bow to him, while we still worship Jehovah.

    This scripture you quoted contradicts your statement that Jesus received "authority" after his resurrection. This scripture says he received authority while still alive; but, does this mean he was ruling?

    The word used here for "authority" is exousia. This word does not mean Jesus was speaking of ruling as king, but rather that he had literally, authority to act and to direct. Once our Lord was given authority in the heavens and Earth, he had the right to direct others in God's plans. Which means the authority he was speaking of, was his authority over aggelos, or messengers.

    My translation is an accurate and faithful translation of the original Greek.

    "Having been put to death indeed in the flesh, however, being made alive in the spirit, in which also to the spirits in prison he went to preach when they were disobedient; while God was waiting in longsuffering in the days of Noah for the ark's construction." (Joshua Stone)

    There is nothing to say to the imprisoned spirits after Jesus is resurrected, they are not in the abyss, they were fully aware of our Lord's conquest over this world. No courtesy needs to be further given to these spirits after their imprisonment, they were already awaiting the day of their destruction.

    Rather, Jesus preached to those spirits during the time the ark was being built.
     
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    It is important to understand how particular words in ancient Greek are translated into other languages. Many words can be translated differently based on the idea or subject matter being discussed. In this case, Jesus was speaking of the time he addressed this subject with his disciples. One key word in this case is “pas”; translated as “All”. This, along with “Exousia”= authority.

    These two words can be compared to a similar case in John 12. It states: “The Pharisees therefore said among themselves, Perceive ye how ye prevail nothing? behold, the world is gone after him.” ( Joh 12:19 KJV ) Did the world, or whole world, go after Jesus as the Pharisees said? Or even, all those in Judea, or Jerusalem? The obvious answer is NO! So, “All authority” is relative in this case.
    In other words, he had authority to use as he chose to use the authority. The “world”, or “whole world” spoken of at that time only covered the area around Israel, in what is known as the “middle east”. Could Jesus have used “all authority” at that time? Yes! Did He? NO! Why not? Because it wasn’t a part of God’s plan. Remember? His plan was the sacrifice.

    Many people get “world”, and “earth” confused when reading the Bible. They think they are the same. The word, world in Greek, is “kosmos”, having the meaning of a system. Strong’s defines it as: “an apt and harmonious arrangement or constitution, order, government. Another way of using this word “kosmos”, could also be translated as “every one”. “Everyone is going after him.” There again, not everyone went after Jesus.
     
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    Cristo

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    ____________________



    (1Co 6:3) . . .Do YOU not know that we shall judge angels? { hmmm, what about this???}

    (2Pe 2:4) 4 Certainly if God did not hold back from punishing the angels that sinned, but, by throwing them into Tar′ta‧rus, delivered them to pits of dense darkness to be reserved for judgment;
    { Isn't Tartarus a place for imprisoned Spirits ie...angles????}

    (Jude 6) . . .And the angels that did not keep their original position but forsook their own proper dwelling place he has reserved with eternal bonds under dense darkness for the judgment of the great day.
    {Aren't these demons being described as angels in imprisonment???}



    ---------------

    I quoted (Mt 28:18) 18 And Jesus approached and spoke to them, saying: “All authority has been given me in heaven and on the earth..."

    You said the scripture contradicted my statement which was "Upon his death and resurrection he received authority over all things on earth and in the heavens."

    Where is the contradiction?????

    -------

    You then stated that Mt 28:18 says Jesus "received authority while still alive."

    This is twisting scripture to fit your own private interpretation, your eisegesis.
    Where does it say that Joshua? WHERE????

    Or did you just reinterpret the scripture to say what you WANT it to say for the purpose of being right in your eyes? That's EXACTLY what you did sir.




    Lol. Thanks for paraphrasing what I already said in the previous post.


    So lets sum up everything now.

    According to you, JoshuaStone7. Jesus went to preach to the angels during Noahs day to speak to them BEFORE he had authority.
    You do not believe that the mention of angels in these two scriptures below could be the event of him going to the demons in imprisonment because you don't think God would call demons angels, even though that is what they are.

    (1Ti 3:16) . . .Indeed, the sacred secret of this godly devotion is admittedly great: ‘He was made manifest in flesh, was declared righteous in spirit, appeared to angels, was preached about among nations, was believed upon in [the] world, was received up in glory.’

    (1Pe 3:22) 22 He is at God’s right hand, for he went his way to heaven; and angels and authorities and powers were made subject to him.
    Even though just three verses prior it talks of Jesus going to talk to the spirits in prison. (1Pe 3:19-20) 19 In this [state] also he went his way and preached to the spirits in prison, 20 who had once been disobedient . . .

    Can you really continue with this Noahs day line of reasoning once you look at the evidence in the scriptures? Joshua, a person doesn't need to understand Greek or Hebrew to get the sense of what is being said. You of all people should know this.

    _________________


    Joshua, it is abundantly clear to me why this forum has dissipated to what it now is. It's the Joshua/Tsaphah show and nobody wants to watch. I lurk but after this it will be my last post and I will close my member status. This sight is poisonous and I think the loss of numbers clearly demonstrates this.

    Cristo (formerly known as sir_chan OUT!!!)



     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Let me start by saying: The purpose of a forum is to have an interchange of understandings. People come together to learn from each other.

    And it's comments like this below, that are "poisonous" to this process, and frankly are distant from our Lord's loving direction.

    It's comments like this that remind me of my early days of sharing my newly discovered understandings with those around me. I was naive to think that people would be open to discussion, rather then headstrong opposition, and the lack of patience. In my early years of study, I was naive to think everyone could learn from each other, and guide others in love, and spiritual attention, instead of the spirit they showed; that of negativity. I discovered that many are merely more interested in their own understandings, rather then coming together in love, to mold each other.

    "As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another." (Prov 27:17)

    Biblical discussion requires an interchange in love for each other, and the spirit we show in response to others comments, shows the spirit that actually resides in us. You have shown me the spirit that resides in you.

    Since you no longer wish to be a member here, there is no reason for me to comment further.
     
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    Tsaphah

    Tsaphah Experienced Member

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    I have been a member, if that is what it could be called, of this forum since 2003 (when Robert had it on his site.) Oh yes, Christo/Sir_Chan; I never knew you, until recently. And, it is “site”, not “sight”. That, of course, could be a play on words. My first thoughts were to try to be correct, and encourage you to remain here. But, it is likely that you are looking for something else. As for reasons for others who have left, we can’t say what their reasons were. Some of them likely went back to Robert’s new site.

    One of the reasons I joined, was to learn from other viewpoints, and remained after Robert removed himself. He said it was taking too much of his time away from his goals. One of the reasons I stay here, is to help others understand the Gospel. Many of my family members were/are Jehovah’s Witnesses. They continually sent me copies of the Awake and Watchtower magazines; when I was in the military. I hated it!! But, after several years as a civilian, I started a bible study with a “Pioneer Sister”. I had been to just about every denomination you can name. I could not back up their teachings with what the bible said.

    When I started asking questions about their teachings, and the things that didn’t fit, I was told that it was necessary to believe. I could not do that. Well, after studying with the “Pioneer Sister”, I found that the teachings of the Witnesses fit what the bible said. So, I decided to get baptized. That was in 1973. I did not last too long. I left the Witnesses in 1985. It wasn’t because of their teachings, it was because of the corruption within the organization and the Kingdom Halls. I put my books and bible away for 20 years.

    A fellow employee, at a company I worked for, asked me a question about the biblical flood. He asked if I believed it to be true. I told him that I did. That got me started again, and I had a hard time finding my Bible. It was squirreled away in a book bag, in the back of my closet. We started talking about the bible. I had been curious about what the Witnesses were up to, and found Roberts’s site.

    I joined with the idea of challenging some of the members, along with Robert. I found it to be quite interesting and informative. One thing I have noticed is that many who have come and gone were apparently not finding what they wanted. Or, likely, they were afraid of the TRUTH. Maybe not. I can’t be their judge. As my monicker indicates, I am a watcher/sentinel. So, I had to “be sure of all things” in order to keep out anyone dealing in falsehood.

    Over the last 35 years, I have had the privilege of studying the bible, gaining knowledge of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek. I also, along the way, studied philosophy, and ancient beliefs. Oh yes, also, English. I’ll stop here, I believe I’ve already said too much.

    Even if I am the last to be here, I will be the lone guard and Watcher (Tsaphah):)
     
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    Joshuastone7

    Joshuastone7 Administrator Staff Member

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    Greetings brother....

    It's unfortunate when attempting to discuss the original languages with someone, they are simply blinded by their own understandings. I have fought for years to keep my own understandings out of discovering truths, (as you had a front row seat to); and, it is unfortunate when I see this in others.

    I was not wrong about my definition of angels/aggelos. Even worldly commentators understand this word is only used to denote messengers of the true God. A quick look into any interlinear or biblical commentary would have pointed this fact out to anyone.

    When the text speaks of the angels who had sinned, it is speaking of them as they were before they had sinned. The only text that is slightly ambiguous is 1Co 6:3, "Do YOU not know that we shall judge angels? However, any commentary you read will still tell you this text is not speaking of the fallen spirits. The text can mean simply messengers, as in men who were once messengers of God, or simply that of any messengers that are currently still faithful, be it heavenly or earthly.

    1 Cor 6:3, Pulpit Commentary;

    "Verse 3. - That we shall judge angels. Angels, i.e. some who belong, or once did belong, to that class. The statement furnishes no data for further speculation. It can hardly mean "evil spirits," for where the word is entirely unqualified it always means good angels; otherwise we might refer it to the "angels which kept not their first estate" (Jude 1:6). It is impossible, and not straightforward, to explain away the word "angels" as meaning Church officials, etc., or to make the word "judge" mean "involve a condemnation of them by comparison with ourselves." All that we can say is that "God chargeth even his angels with folly, and in his sight the very heavens are not clean" (Job 4:18); and that "to angels hath he not subjected the world to come" (Hebrews 2:5). We must take the plain meaning of the apostle's words, whether we can throw any light on his conceptions or not. The only alternative is to suppose that the word means "those who once were good angels," but are now fallen spirits. It was so understood by Tertullian, Chrysostom, etc. How much more; rather, to say nothing of. The accurate rendering of these verses is a matter of some difficulty, but not to an extent which affects the material sense, or which can be explained without a minute knowledge of Greek."

    1 Cor 6:3, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers;

    "(3) We shall judge angels.--Many conjectures have been made as to the exact significance of the word "angels" here. Some suggest that it must signify bad angels; but this would be an unusual use of the word without any qualifying adjective. It is better, perhaps, to regard the passage as a climax arising out of the Apostle's intense realisation of the unity of Christ and His Church triumphant--a point which seems ever present to the mind of St. Paul when he speaks of the dignity of Christianity. In this sense, redeemed humanity will be superior to, and judges of, the spiritual world. That the words have some such large significance, and are not the expression of a hard and literal fact regarding some members of the angelic host, is, I think, borne out by the subsequent words, where the contrast to "angels" is not "men," but "things" relating to this life."

    1 Tim 3:16, Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers;

    "Seen of angels . . .--It has been suggested that "angels" mean here nothing more than His Apostles and His own chosen messengers, by whom Jesus Christ was seen after His claims to Supreme power had been justified in the Spirit which had raised Him from the dead. These saw Him first, and after that carried the glad message to the distant isles of the Gentiles. But in spite of the ingenuity of such an exposition, the plain, obvious meaning of the word "angels "must be maintained, for the invariable meaning of angelos in the New Testament (perhaps with the exception of the earlier chapters of the Apocalypse) is never "apostle," but "angel." He was "seen of angels"--that is, Jesus Christ, after His resurrection and return to the throne at the Father's right hand, was, in His glorified humanity, visible to angels, who before had never looked on God. (Comp. Ephesians 3:10; Hebrews 1:6; 1Peter 1:12--each of which passages bears in some way on this mysterious subject.) Theodoret and St. Chrysostom have similarly commented on this statement respecting the angels' share in the beatific vision."
     
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