GODLY EDIFYING - EDIFICATION OF THE BRETHREN - OR SOPHISTRY?

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GODLY EDIFYING - EDIFICATION OF THE BRETHREN - OR SOPHISTRY?

Postby George » Thu May 30, 2013 4:09 pm

Aloha all,

After observing and taking part in several so-called "Bible Forums" on the NET I have reached some serious conclusions - i.e. that most of what takes place on those Forums consists of vain jangling, evil surmisings, idle tales, fables, superstitions, and speculations, which are never edifying or spiritually profitable.

GODLY EDIFYING & EDIFICATION OF THE BRETHREN OR SOPHISTRY?

DEBATE
Context determines meaning. Proverbs 25:9 illustrates where “debate” can serve a useful purpose, or may be profitable to the participants.
Proverbs 25:9 Debate thy cause with thy neighbor himself; and discover not a secret to another:

However, the vast majority of the time that the word debate (or debates) is used in the Holy Bible it is used in a derogatory manner.
Isaiah 58:4 Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.

Romans 1:29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,

2 Corinthians 12:20 For I fear, lest, when I come, I shall not find you such as I would, and that I shall be found unto you such as ye would not: lest there be debates, envyings, wraths, strifes, backbitings, whisperings, swellings, tumults:

It should be noted that the words “debate” in Romans 1:29 and “debates” in 2 Corinthians 12:20 are listed amongst some obviously wicked and abominable sins; which would indicate that Christians have to be extremely cautious engaging in “debates” and real careful as to our motives for doing so. If “godly edifying” [1Timothy 1:4] does not result from a debate, we should avoid engaging in one; for if there is nothing to be gained from a debate (i.e. no “profit” to be had), it becomes unprofitable and vain to persist in debating, and an exercise in futility to continue do so.

WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY

DEBATE, n [Fr. Debat; Sp. Debate; Port. id.; de and battre, to beat.]
1. Contention in words or arguments; discussion for elucidating truth; strife in argument or reasoning, between persons of different opinions, each endeavoring to prove his own opinion right, and that of his opponent wrong; dispute; controversy; as the debates in parliament or in congress.

2.  Strife; contention.
               Behold, ye fast for strife and debate. Is. Lviii.

3.  The power of being disputed; as, this question is settled beyond debate; the story is true beyond debate.

4.  Debate or debates, the published report of arguments for and against a measure; as the debates in the convention are printed.  
  
DEBATE, v. t. [Fr. debattre; Sp. debater; Port. debater. See Beat and Abate]
To contend for in words or arguments; to strive to maintain a cause by reasoning; to dispute; to discuss; to argue; to contest, as opposing parties; as, the question was debated till a late hour.
    
    Debate thy cause with thy neighbor himself.   Prov. Xxv.

DEBATE, v. i.
1.  To debate on or in, to deliberate; to discuss or examine different arguments in the mind.

2.  To dispute.

3.  To engage in combat.   [Not in use.]

DEBA'TED, pp. Disputed; argued; discussed.

DEBA'TEMENT, n. Controversy; deliberation.

DEBA'TING, ppr. Disputing; discussing; contending by arguments.


DISPUTE
Again, context determines meaning. Once in a great while the Apostle Paul “disputed” with certain people - as illustrated in the following verses:
Acts 9:29 And he spake boldly in the name of the Lord Jesus, and disputed against the Grecians: but they went about to slay him.

Acts 17:17 Therefore disputed he in the synagogue with the Jews, and with the devout persons, and in the market daily with them that met with him.  

Acts 19:8  And he went into the synagogue, and spake boldly for the space of three months, disputing and persuading the things concerning the kingdom of God.
9 But when divers were hardened, and believed not, but spake evil of that way before the multitude, he departed from them, and separated the disciples, disputing daily in the school of one Tyrannus.
10 And this continued by the space of two years; so that all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks.

And yet Paul was critical of “the disputer of this world”:
1 Corinthians 1:20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?

The Apostle Paul did not spend all of his time (or most of his time – or even a substantial part of his time) “disputing” with people. However, when it served God’s purpose (i.e. “Godly edifying”), Paul “disputed” with “the Grecians”; “the Jews”; “the devout persons”; and “with them that met with him”. A search of the words dispute, disputed, and disputer in Scripture (found only seven times in the entire Holy Bible) reveals that the meaning of the word “dispute” is determined by the context in which it is found. It takes true spiritual discernment (which is only given by the Holy Spirit) to determine IF, or WHEN, or with WHOM, a Christian should engage in disputes. However, in the context, the words in 1 Corinthians 1:20 clearly teach that a genuine Bible believer should not be a “disputer”.

WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY

DISPUTE, v.i. L. Dispute is radically very similar to debate and discuss, both of which are from beating, driving, agitation.
1. To contend in argument; to reason or argue in opposition; to debate; to altercate; and to dispute violently is to wrangle. Paul disputed with the Jews in the synagogue. The disciples of Christ disputed among themselves who should be the greatest. Men often dispute about trifles.

2. To strive or contend in opposition in a competitor; as, we disputed for the prize.

DISPUTE, v.t.
1. To attempt to disprove by arguments or statements; to attempt to prove to be false, unfounded or erroneous; to controvert; to attempt to overthrow by reasoning. We dispute assertions, opinions, arguments or statements, when we endeavor to prove them false or unfounded. We dispute the validity of a title or claim. Hence to dispute a cause or case with another, is to endeavor to maintain ones own opinions or claims, and to overthrow those of his opponent.

2. To strive or contend for, either by words or actions; as, to dispute the honor of the day; to dispute a prize. But this phrase is elliptical, being used for dispute for, and primarily the verb is intransitive. See the Intransitive Verb, No. 2.

3. To call in question the propriety of; to oppose by reasoning. An officer is never to dispute the orders of his superior.

4. To strive to maintain; as, to dispute every inch of ground.

DISPUTE, n.
1. Strife or contest in words or by arguments; an attempt to prove and maintain ones own opinions or claims, by arguments or statements, in opposition to the opinions, arguments or claims of another; controversy in words. They had a dispute on the lawfulness of slavery, a subject which, one would think, could admit of no dispute.
Dispute is usually applied to verbal contest; controversy may be in words or writing.
Dispute is between individuals; debate and discussion are applicable to public bodies.

2. The possibility of being controverted; as in the phrase, this is a fact, beyond all dispute.

QUESTIONS
1 Timothy 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.

1 Timothy 6:4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,

2 Timothy 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.

Titus 3:9  But avoid foolish questions, and genealogies, and contentions, and strivings about the law; for they are unprofitable and vain.


WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY


QUESTION, n. ques'chun. L. quaestio. See Quest.
1. The act of asking; an interrogatory; as, to examine by question and answer.

SURMI'SINGS
1 Timothy 6:3 If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;
4 He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,
5 Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself.

WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY

SURMI'SING, ppr. Suspecting; imagining upon slight evidence.

SURMI'SING, n. The act of suspecting; surmise; as evil surmisings. 1 Tim. 6.

VAIN JANGLING
1 Timothy 1:5  Now the end of the commandment is charity out of a pure heart, and of a good conscience, and of faith unfeigned:
6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling;


WEBSTER’S 1828 DICTIONARY

JAN'GLING, ppr. Wrangling; quarreling; sounding discordantly.

JAN'GLING, n. A noisy dispute; a wrangling.

Whereas, on occasion, and under the right circumstances (i.e. genuine godly edification and/or spiritual profit), Christians can engage in a debate or a dispute in an attempt to persuade people of the Truth – it is clearly understood that vain jangling, evil surmisings, idle tales, fables, and superstitions, are never edifying or profitable.

You can not win an argument or a debate with a zealot, a sophist, or a fool. There is a difference between people engaging in a reasonable discussion concerning a particular subject (or issue) upon which they may disagree, where an exchange of ideas is calmly presented between parties; and disputing (or quarreling) over an issue where contention and strife are the final result. The first may be profitable and edifying, the second is unprofitable and a waste of time.

IDLE TALES
Luke 24:11 And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.

FABLES
1 Timothy 1:4 Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies, which minister questions, rather than godly edifying which is in faith: so do.

2 Timothy 4:4 And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables.

2 Peter 1:16 For we have not followed cunningly devised fables, when we made known unto you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of his majesty.

OLD WIVES FABLES
1 Timothy 4:7 But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness.

JEWISH FABLES
Titus 1:14 Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

SUPERSTITIONS
Acts 17:22  Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars' hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.

I do not consider Webster’s 1828 Dictionary to be the “Final Authority” when it comes to the definition or meaning of all English words. When it comes to spiritual words, such as “soul”, “spirit”, “heart”, “mind”, “conscience”, etc., Noah Webster may not have been totally accurate, simply because those words (and many others like them in Scripture) are spiritually discerned [1Corinthians 2:14]. And although Noah Webster obviously was a true scholar when it came to the definition (or meaning) of many English words, words that have a spiritual definition (or meaning) must be defined by the context in which they are found in the Holy Bible – “comparing spiritual things with spiritual” [1Corinthians 2:13] and seeking the guidance of the Holy Spirit as to their meaning [John 16:13; 1 John 2:20-21, 26-27].

Psalms 33:4 For the word of the LORD is right; and all his works are done in truth.
George Anderson    http://www.thywordistruthkjv.com/

. . . . . yea, let God be true, but every man a liar; as it is written . . . . . Romans 3:4
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Re: GODLY EDIFYING - EDIFICATION OF THE BRETHREN - OR SOPHIS

Postby Chette » Fri May 31, 2013 12:27 pm

Thanks be to our Lord and Saviour for this timely reminder and edification.
Psalm 49:3 My mouth shall speak of wisdom; and the meditation of my heart [shall be] of understanding.

www.chettesblog.wordpress.com
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Re: GODLY EDIFYING - EDIFICATION OF THE BRETHREN - OR SOPHIS

Postby PeanutGallery » Fri May 31, 2013 4:38 pm

My parents were dev out Roman Catholics; I told them I had left the RCC, and trusted in  Christ alone for salvation.
I was labeled a heretick and rebuked by letter; anyway, we continued to visit but could not discuss the Jesus of the Bible.

I got involved in forum debates with catholics because I wanted to better understand where my parents were coming from and it seemed to be better to get blasted from unknowns in forums than from my parents.

Last Oct 2012, my dad had a stroke, paralyzed and couldn't speak; I had at that point a captive audience and took opportunities to share the truth of salvation by faith in Christ alone to save one from God's wrath.  He passed away; I have no idea if he responded to the gospel and holy Spirit.
I then asked my mom, on two occasions, who had shed his blood for her; on both occasions she refused to reply.
Two months later, she had a stroke; outcome to same as my dad, paralyzed and couldn't speak; and I shared the same message with her. She passed away; and I still don't know the outcome for either of them.

The point?  I debate, not for the sake of debate, but opportunity to share scripture with the audience; perchance God would use scripture to convict.

I have no illusion;  debates, discussions, dialogues, human reasoning will never convict of sin; Scripture and the Holy Ghost alone reproves the world of sin.

John 16:8  And when he is come, he will reprove the world of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment:
1Peter 1:18,19 Redeemed with the precious blood of Christ
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