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About Deborah_

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    Bracknell, UK
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    Fair trade

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  1. Deborah_

    Is this Biblical ?

    Looks like 100% showmanship to me. God is not a cash machine.
  2. Deborah_

    God is not male

    Neither this link, nor the article it links to, give any speech of the archbishop in full. They are just snippets, which could easily be quoted out of context to make them seem worse than they really are. "How can God not be male?" Easily. "Male" presupposes the existence of its complement, "female". Applied to God, it is a meaningless term unless there is also a "female" god somewhere - which we all believe to be false! So Justin Welby is perfectly correct there: God is not male (or female, either). The problem is that the human race is gendered, and that is reflected in our language (or in most European languages, at any rate - I think Japanese doesn't differentiate between 'he' and 'she'). God is personal (that is a given), so we are obliged to use personal metaphors to describe and understand Him (such as 'Father') - and they come with gender attached. If we want to use a pronoun to refer to God, we have to choose between 'he', 'she', and 'it'. None of them are really satisfactory, if you want to convey the idea of a personal yet non-gendered being. 'He' is the least unsatisfactory. The other problem is that the gender debate is so heated at the moment that there are an awful lot of people around who automatically take offence at any 'masculine' terms. Although I think church leaders are wrong to try to appease them, I can understand why they do it.
  3. Deborah_

    What kind of Bible(s) do you have?

    I use the NIV for both reading and study. We do have a number of other versions in the house (NRSV, Good News, NLT, The Message), but in practice I only need the NIV.
  4. Deborah_

    Why Jesus told us to make friends with mammon ?

    Oh, the obscurity of old English! It doesn't mean "make friends with mammon" but "make friends using mammon"! So, the NIV translates this verse: "I tell you, use worldly wealth to gain friends for yourselves, so that when it is gone, you will be welcomed into eternal dwellings." In other words, use Money to do good to people, and it will be an investment for the future life (see also Luke 12:33,34).
  5. Deborah_

    666 revealed

    History shows that anyone's name can be made to add up to 666 if you try hard enough...
  6. Deborah_

    Promised land invasion

    36 men died during the first assault on Ai (Joshua 7:5) As far as I can remember, we are not told of any other casualties - but the Biblical histories generally only record casualty numbers in the defeated side, not the winners. So we can't assume that there were no others.
  7. Deborah_

    Matthew 24 and the end times question

    The short answer to your question is: nobody knows for certain what Jesus meant. That's why there are so many different opinions. When Jesus refers to the fig tree, is it just because it’s a good illustration of the principle of signs, or is He specifically using it as a symbol for the nation of Israel? Many people believed that the reappearance of Israel as a political entity (in 1948) was a sign that the End was near; but we're still waiting. Or was Jesus referring to a spiritual reawakening – as Paul seems to predict (Romans 11:25,26) – that is yet to happen? Personally, I think the latter is the more likely. And what did Jesus mean by "this generation"? Did He mean that the world would end within a few decades of this conversation (it didn’t)? Or that Jerusalem would be destroyed within that timeframe (it was - almost exactly 40 years after)? Or that the generation witnessing the first sign of the End would also see His return? (Which rather begs the question: what is the ‘first’ sign? We don’t know the answer to that question either!) AD 70 saw the partial fulfilment of the prophecies in this chapter, but not everything. So it was a 'foretaste' of what the End would be like, not the actual End itself.
  8. Deborah_


    What on earth does all that have to do with anything? As if the alphabet used makes any difference... I haven't come across "Petio" in Russian, so where did you get that information from? And come to think of it, French has four words that refer to "me".
  9. Deborah_


    That's not universal. It happens to be true in modern English. But in Russian (for example) there are five ways of referring to "me".
  10. Deborah_


    I'm sorry, but this list looks a bit contrived. What about all the things that come in twos, or fours? For a lot of them, it all depends on how you define them. And just to take one example: a musical chord can have any number of notes from two upwards!
  11. Deborah_

    Proverbs 11:24-25 and Proverbs 22:6

    Proverbs 11:24,25 Generosity is never a bad idea; it's the miser who loses out in the long run. The more we invest in relationships, the more we will benefit. Well irrigated soil produces a larger crop! (II Corinthians 9:6) Also, the giver benefits as much as - if not more than - the receiver. The more we give, the more we will get back (eventually) – repaid with interest (Luke 6:38). Proverbs 22:6 Parenting is an awesome responsibility! The way in which we raise our children sets their course for the rest of their lives. General note on Proverbs: Remember that these are proverbs, not promises! They are generalisations (this is how the world works), not guarantees. Being generous doesn't guarantee prosperity, and some children turn out bad despite having had good parents (and vice versa).
  12. Deborah_

    New Testament tithing

    I give to the local church that I belong to.
  13. Deborah_

    Matthew 22 : 36 - 40

    Idolatry lies at the root of all sin, so love for God must be the most fundamental principle of the Law, from which all else is derived. Now if I truly love God, then two things will follow: I will want to obey Him, and I will also love all those who bear His image. And so the ‘greatest commandment’ is not one commandment but two: love God and love your neighbour. You cannot fulfil the first without also fulfilling the second (I John 4:20,21). These two commandments underlie every other commandment in the Law. Together, they summarise all that God requires of us (Romans 13:8-10).
  14. Deborah_

    Isaiah 54:17 Question

    If the KJV/NKJV doesn't seem to make sense, try a more modern and less literal translation. They often do better at bringing out the meaning. "You will refute every tongue that accuses you." (NIV)
  15. Deborah_


    I have found it very useful - for keeping tabs on my (adult) daughter, for keeping in touch with old friends, for arranging parties and disseminating information quickly. Of course it has its downside. A lot depends on how you use it. But I've never regretted joining.