I find it the highest delusion that a human can perfectly know the Holy Spirit.
I understand, dear BOTR (again, peace to you!), but since quoting the Bible apparently isn't a problem with you, may I share the following from Paul? Thank you!
"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit." 2 Corinthians 3:17, 18
I join with the masses of true Christians proclaiming the triune God
Yes. Unfortunately, a smaller "flock" of us can't join you folks.
but realize that I am an imperfect human.
As we all are, dear one, truly.
I grope to find a solution for myself based on knowledge and experience.
Why, when there is so much better, easier Way? (John 14:6)
No one knows it all (except for Manson and the WTBTS).
There is One, dear one, who knows even more than those AND it is all TRUE:
“To YOU , O men, I am calling, and my voice is to the sons of men. O inexperienced ones, understand shrewdness; and YOU stupid ones, understand heart. Listen, for it is about the foremost things that I speak, and the opening of my lips is about uprightness. For my palate in low tones utters truth itself; and wickedness is something detestable to my lips. All the sayings of my mouth are in righteousness. Among them there is nothing twisted or crooked. 9 All of them are straight to the discerning one, and upright to the ones finding knowledge. T AKE my discipline and not silver, and knowledge rather than choice gold." Proverbs 8:4-10Now, I understand that you might believe this doesn't apply to Christ, but only to wisdom in the abstract. But that is not accurate. The word used for "wisdom" is a fminine noun, which is why scholars portray "wisdom" as a female; however, the word for "understanding/discernment" is a male noun. Both are accurate as there is both male... and female... in both God and Christ. That's how Eve came to be OUT of Adham, who was made in God's image: male... and female.
But, to help you understand that it IS my Lord speaking, I offer:
“Y OU are searching the Scriptures, because YOU think that by means of them YOU will have everlasting life; and these are the very ones that bear witness about me." John 5:39
Isn't there an inspirational quote that may be from the Bible that we know God but through a glass darkly in this life.
Yes. Do you know, though, what that "glass" is? It is a mirror... which mirror, is Christ. By looking at him... he who is NOT God but the REFLECTION of Him... we can see God. Because right now, while we are in the flesh, we cannot look on God. So, we must look at something... or rather, someone... else who bears His image: Christ.
I know that nontrinitarians call themselves Christian but I personally fail to see how this is a different from a HIndu or Buddhist or Muslim who may believe in Jesus as a special teacher.
Oh, Christ is SO much more than a teacher, dear one... special or otherwise. He is not only the Holy Spirit, but he is the LAMB of God... that takes away the sins of the world.
My experience is what makes me believe the Trinity. As I said before, both the Trinity or lack of Trinity are extrapolitions from the Bible.
Actually, the idea of a trinity, which has its roots in idol and false god worship, comes from some scribal tampering as to my Lord's words recorded at Matthew 28:19, which tampering, in order to support the teaching of a trinity, rendered the verse as:
"Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit..."
What my Lord said, however was:
"Go make disciples of me from people of all nations, baptizing them, in the name of the Father, INTO the Son... in holy spirit."
Which is exactly what the accounts show the Apostles, brothers of my Lord, and Paul did.
The Gospels and Paul's epistle (which are much earlier so I tend to believe worship statements in Paul) lack neat, precise Creeds.
There is no way to understand what Paul believed or what the Jersualem group with James as head believed.
I disagree: there is a Way, but only One... and only one means by which he reveals it:
"These things I write YOU about those who are trying to mislead YOU . And as for YOU , the anointing that YOU received from him remains in YOU , and YOU do not need anyone to be teaching YOU ; but, as the anointing from him is teaching YOU about all things, and is true and is no lie, and just as it has taught YOU , remain in union with him. So now, little children, remain in union with him, that when he is made manifest we may have freeness of speech and not be shamed away from him at his presence. If YOU know that he is righteous, YOU gain the knowledge that everyone who practices righteousness has been born from him." 1 John 2:26-29
My personal take is that the Jerusalem Apostles did not believe a new religion was founded.
They did not believe a new religion was established, but a clarification, correction, and fulfillment of the Laws of the old one.
They worshipped in the Temple as Jews.
Yes. Better Jews... because they had now been set free from the Law by means of the NEW Law. Thus, they no longer had to worry about transgressing the Law... but got back to the ROOTS of being Israel and Abraham's seed... which was shown by SURPASSING the Old Law... through by fulfilling the NEW Law... of love. For love is the Law's fulfillment.
Obviously, Stephen proclaimed something that was complete heresy to Jews.
Well, yeah. It's like a JW telling others JWs that they don't need to attend meetings, or go out in service, or place magazines, or wear suits and skirts. Because NONE of that makes one spiritual or proves one righteous. But, like the temple priesthood and its ritualistic washing and giving of the tenth and observance of festivals... all the while stepping over your brother, let alone your enemy, dying in the street... JWs believe that such things make them "clean" and "righteous." The same with other "christians" who put their national loyalties over their spiritual loyalties.
It is confusing. Why engage in Temple worship after the Resurrection?
Because (1) that's where the Jews were, (2) they were NEVER directed or sanctioned to stumble the Jews, to the contary, in fact; (3) my Lord told them to remain until HE told them to flee; which (4) evidence when they saw "the disgusting thing standing in a holy place." Which didn't occur until the Roman occupation, some 40 years later.
The apostles are completely clueless and dense in the gospels.
Perhaps. But it isn't them that we're supposed to be listening to anyway, is it? (Matthew 17:5; John 10:1-10, 27; John 7:37, 38)
Yet Stephen is emboldened to speak of the nature of Jesus to ignite the passions of the Jews to stone him.
And what so emboldened him? Was it not the holy spirit that he had received from Christ, the Holy Spirit? They weren't stoning Stephen - they were attempting to silence the Spirit... which Spirit they could not receive.
I don't believe Jesus as a doer of good works or miracle worker would cause a stoning.
Well, it depends on the results of such doing, doesn't it? And whether those who cast the stones realized what they were doing... or were being used by another?
The Jews had many self-proclaimed Messiahs. Jesus did not proclaim himself the Son of Man. He is rather coy at his trial.
Yes (although, he did acknowledge that they were calling him a blasphemer because of who he said he was)
In any event, the lack of a defined formula for belief in Paul and the Gospels, well into the next century with John, is telling. The disputes between Paul and Peter and the discovery of the Nag Hammadi scriptures shows there was not agreement even in the years immediately following Christs' death and resurrection.
Which is why LOOKING for agreement among THEM... is... well, what truly IS the purpose? Isn't it CHRIST we're supposed to be looking at/to?
I am Anglican, which is mostly progressive. The traditions of centuries appealled to me, esp. after being raised a Witness.
Traditions... yes. Appealling, indeed. Always have been, haven't they? Take care there, dear one...
Compare the complex in Brooklyn to the wonders of Medieval and Renaissance Art. Michelangelo's Last Judgment contains very unflattering portraits of his enemies at the Vatican. I wept at the Sistine Chapel and looking at Giotto and Duccio. Why must every Witness creation be so bad.
I don't quite know what you mean (i.e., so bad) but I can say that I have yet to see a piece of art that has caused me as much... well, emotion... as Michaelangelo's Pieta. Not what it depicts, but the very piece itself. Every intricate line and detail. I have a black in white photobook on my coffee table and I can look at that thing for hours... and still see something I missed the last time. I consider Michaelangelo's art one of the wonders of the world, of man, of the creation (along with many others). I marvel that one can take a rough piece of stone and bring forth such... well, beauty doesn't do justice. There is no word. Or put oil, charcoal, watercolor, whathaveyou, to canvas, cardboard or other medium and create a product that even the real thing doesn't appear to equal. Or play an instrument (as some here do). I can't do any of these things. But I most certainly am appreciative that some can!
Music and art can reveal human truths the Watchtower writing never will.
Oh, I wouldn't limit that to music and art, dear one - LOLOLOLOLOLOL! The WT will NEVER reveal truths, beyond it's one or two very tiny pieces of knowledge (which it must recycle again and again).
Of course, I marveled that I could be at the Vatican and Fiorenze. My eyeballs were not singed by Jehovah's wrath.
My husband says he longs to see Paris. Knowing him, I think he'd most likely turn into a puddle in Rome, Florence, and Venice. So, I intend to take him there and personally see it done, one day.
Again, peace to you, dear BOTR!
Your servant and a slave of Christ,