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Nephilim, Demiurge, Apocrypha QUESTION from Ikari December 26, 1999
This is my second question posed to the Saint Michael Apologetics forum ; And is far more 'question-like' then my first, which will in all likelihood be completely ignored.
Here goes. I am admittedly not Catholic, as I stated in my previous question. I do, however, have a fascination with your faith, and any faith associated with Christ - Due primarily to the huge impact on the history of our race, for good and ill, that your church has had. I chose this forum to post my question in because I like the style of the forum monitor. He seems to post thoughtfully, if a bit dogmatically (Excuse the poor pun), and also because I cannot find a more suitable forum for such a question. I have done a lot of research into Gnosticism and its common roots in the history of Christianity.
What are your feelings on the Apocrypha?
What are the church's feelings on the Apocrypha?
It is clearly outlined in your mythology that exactly 200 of the hosts of Heaven were sent to monitor the race of humanity, and also to protect the race of humanity from the blasphemy of knowledge. It would appear that the knowledge we were protected from was primarily scientific knowledge, but also philosophical. Why would YHWH not want us to understand, first-hand, the differences between good and evil, so that we can then make an informed decision?
It is also clearly outlined, primarily in the Book of Enoch, that these Watchers ended up imparting chunks of knowledge onto mankind ; Not unlike the serpent in the garden. They were assigned here by YHWH to prevent us from obtaining certain secrets of heaven and earth, and changed their minds at some point. For this trangression they were later destroyed by Rapheal (And the Flood). Why do you suppose they changed their minds?
If we were the only creation of god that was given free will (As I have so heard it), how did it come that Lucifer, still a member of the hosts of Heaven, exhibited free will and rebelled against god?
If Lucifer is evil because he A) rebelled against God, and B) Exhibited jealousy towards humanity, then would YHWH not be evil for A) encouraging Christians to rebel against Rome [ The bible does, indeed, teach obedience of government ], and B) Being so jealous as to demand we have no other gods or idols?
What motivation drove YHWH to create in the first place?
Under what doctrine do you denounce the concept of Demiurge? I presume you are familiar? (I also presumed the Catholic church denounced the concept - I could be wrong.)
The things that were taught to us by the Watchers and the serpent were supposedly 'Knowledge of Good and Evil' and the 'Secrets of Heaven and Earth'. So, if those arts (Language, mathematics, astronomy, sorcery, seduction, botany, war and weaponry-creation, astrology, and so on) were the 'Secrets of Heaven and Earth', practiced in Heaven most assuredly, why are they evil? If God and his angels practice these arts, why can we not know of them?
Please enlighten me to any misconceptions that become readily apparent - I am obviously not flawlessly informed.
I just read over this post and realized it was quite a few questions. I hope that even if you don't have the space to answer my questions publically, you will be willing to answer them via e-mail (It asked me to supply my e-mail address to post a question).
ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius on December 27, 1999 Dear Mr. Ikari:
You stated: This is my second question posed to the Saint Michael Apologetics forum ; And is far more 'question-like' then my first, which will in all likelihood be completely ignored.
Yes, it was rejected for consideration since your first question submitted was not a question but an invitation to debate. This is not a debate forum.
Let me take a moment to clarify something on that issue.
You and others have asked for continuation of debates and discussions in private email if it can’t be done on the Forum. As mentioned, this is not a debate forum, so we try to avoid debates. But I also will almost never continue a discussion in private email, or debate an issue in private email. The reason is that I just don’t have time.
I can debate these issues, and debate them successfully. I have debated these issues MANY times, but I just don’t have time.
Right now I am over 600 emails behind in my In Box. Some emails go all the way back to summer that have not been answered yet. Hundreds more emails come in each week. There are just not enough hours in the day.
So, emails, or questions, that are bashing, are for that reason alone not worthy my time. Emails and questions that wish or beg debate may be worth my time IF I had any. I just don’t have any. And if I had the time, I would want to do it publically so as not to repeat the same debate over and over which is a waste of time.
You ask: What are your feelings on the Apocrypha? What are the church's feelings on the Apocrypha? Well, it depends are what you are calling Apocrypha. The Protestants think that Deutero-canonical books of Tobias, Judith, Wisdom, Ecclesiasticus, Baruch, 1 and 2 Machabees, ver 4 of Chapter 10 to the end of Esther, and Daniel verse 24 of chapter 3 to verse 3 of Chapter 4, and Chapters 13 and 14 are all Apocrypha, but they are not; they are inspired Scripture.
The entire Christian world from Jesus Himself and the Apostles, who quote from these books some 300 times I think, to the 1500’s believed these books to be Inspired Scripture (in the Old Testament). The Catholic Church officially proclaimed this when it pronounced the official canon of Scripture.
Then in the 16th century a group of revolters took it upon themselves to rip out parts of the Bible (those Deuterocanonical texts). I call them revolters because they reformed nothing. They revolted and in their arrogance started new religions made in their own images.
Now as to other books and writings not on the list of Deuterocanonical texts I gave above, those would be considered Apocrypha to Catholics and non-Catholics Christians alike.
As to the Church’s feeling about them? They are books with NO authority at all. They are not inspired by God as is Sacred Scripture and thus are NOT a measure of our faith.
Some Apocryphal books may have some value historically, and have some value in giving us an idea what some minorities of people may have thought or speculated, but they have no real value in discussing Christian theology and teaching.
You state: It is clearly outlined in your mythology that exactly 200 of the hosts of Heaven were sent to monitor the race of humanity, and also to protect the race of humanity from the blasphemy of knowledge.
This is NOT my or the church’s mythology. There is no point in discussing the various fanciful things contained in these Apocryphal books as they have no meaning or authority to Catholics or Christians. I will certainly not defend them, since they are just books written by individuals with no import on Christian theology or teaching.
As far as I am concerned, they are fairy tales and speculations. There is no value in discussing sometimes wild speculations that have no relevance to Christian doctrine.
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