In praise of literalist and symbolist Herb Alvarez: John 14:6 I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/04/06/dismas-to-gestas-have-you-no-fear-of-god-in-praise-of-eruditeexperiencedsagacious-logosrhema-disciple-of-jesus-herb-alvarez/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/in-praise-of-herb-alvarez-from-irresistible-grace-to-irresistible-giving/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/03/12/in-praise-of-our-greatest-wordsmith-symbolist-herb-alvarez/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/03/23/in-praise-of-both-symbolist-literalist-herb-alvarez-lamp-of-faith/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/03/09/in-praise-of-married-couple-sista-clara-and-herb-alvarez-and-sista-claras-under-his-wings-social-ministry/

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+john+1%3a1&qpvt=images+john+1%3a1&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=DCC75B525DD71F965A089A5EEAEBFA2B8BF2D16D&selectedIndex=0

http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+john+1%3a1&qpvt=images+john+1%3a1&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=D4B338DF92AE20E17A6DECE337BA9C1C56B71B20&selectedIndex=5

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+john+1%3a14&qpvt=images+john+1%3a14&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=D2C06A7DA7AB4046EC8A2B0CFDDF5534F9B7C62C&selectedIndex=24

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+john+14%3a6&qpvt=images+john+14%3a6&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=09FEF911D057FA5C9FEF6BEC4A77CBCD610D7591&selectedIndex=5

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+john+14%3a6&qpvt=images+john+14%3a6&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=D0C17A7FAD5CEE033349726372350ED98137C0D7&selectedIndex=58

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+fear+of+god&qpvt=images+fear+of+god&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=BBA74D689A9301A1E04D63BB4BBF567C39793010&selectedIndex=394

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+fear+of+god&qpvt=images+fear+of+god&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=D574F3E6808F6184FE4E8885C49EFFAA830BB05B&selectedIndex=264

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+fear+of+god&qpvt=images+fear+of+god&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=BDCA62B914150338902C195B8FE53EE206E451D1&selectedIndex=8

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+fear+of+god&qpvt=images+fear+of+god&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=0A5EACCB979E50D959F0D568687B6C50D4DABD74&selectedIndex=380

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http://www.bing.com/images/search?q=images+fear+of+god&qpvt=images+fear+of+god&FORM=IGRE#view=detail&id=453F49D60B40DBDE5597CBF16CB9CF7AABB06C73&selectedIndex=443

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Literally, Jesus is the Word, through which living creatures can find salvation.   

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Symbolically, die in the flesh, create a new beginning/life in the spirit of the Word, so to speak.   

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http://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-Word-God.html

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Question: “What do John 1:1,14 mean when they declare that Jesus is the Word of God?”

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Answer:

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The answer to this question is found by first understanding the reason why John wrote his gospel.

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We find his purpose clearly stated in John 20:30-31. “Many other signs therefore Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book; but these have been written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God;

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and that believing you may have life in His name.”

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Once we understand that John’s purpose was to introduce the readers of his gospel to Jesus Christ, establishing Who Jesus is (God in the flesh) and what He did, all with the sole aim of leading them to embrace the saving work of Christ in faith,

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we will be better able to understand why John introduces Jesus as “The Word” in John 1:1.

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By starting out his gospel stating, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God,” John is introducing Jesus with a word or a term that both his Jewish and Gentile readers would have been familiar with.

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The Greek word translated “Word” in this passage is Logos, and it was common in both Greek philosophy and Jewish thought of that day.

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For example, in the Old Testament the “word” of God is often personified as an instrument for the execution of God’s will (Psalm 33:6; 107:20; 119:89; 147:15-18).

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So, for his Jewish readers, by introducing Jesus as the “Word,” John is in a sense pointing them back to the Old Testament where the Logos or “Word” of God is associated with the personification of God’s revelation.

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And in Greek philosophy, the term Logos was used to describe the intermediate agency by which God created material things and communicated with them.

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In the Greek worldview, the Logos was thought of as a bridge between the transcendent God and the material universe.

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Therefore, for his Greek readers the use of the term Logos would have likely brought forth the idea of a mediating principle between God and the world.

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So, essentially, what John is doing by introducing Jesus as the Logos is drawing upon a familiar word and concept that both Jews and Gentiles of his day would have been familiar with and using that as the starting point from which He introduces them to Jesus Christ.

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But John goes beyond the familiar concept of Logos that his Jewish and Gentile readers would have had and presents Jesus Christ not as a mere mediating principle like the Greeks perceived, but as a personal being, fully divine, yet fully human.

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Also, Christ was not simply a personification of God’s revelation as the Jews thought, but was indeed God’s perfect revelation of Himself in the flesh, so much so that John would record Jesus’ own words to Philip: “Jesus said unto Him, ‘Have I been so long with you, and yet you have not come to know Me, Philip? He who has seen Me has seen the Father; how do you say, “Show us the Father”?'” (John 14:9).

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By using the term Logos or “Word” in John 1:1, John is amplifying and applying a concept that was familiar with his audience and using that to introduce his readers to the true Logos of God in Jesus Christ, the Living Word of God, fully God and yet fully man, who came to reveal God to man and redeem all who believe in Him from their sin.

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Read more: http://www.gotquestions.org/Jesus-Word-God.html#ixzz2TgLZHV6J

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http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=John+14:6&version=NIV#

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John 14:6

New International Version (NIV)

6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life.

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No one comes to the Father except through me.”

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http://townhall.com/news/faith/2013/05/13/firstperson-should-we-interpret-the-bible-literally-n1594066

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Should we interpret the Bible literally?

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Should we interpret a Bible verse literally or figuratively?

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It depends on context. A person’s soul is in peril if he thinks Jesus was using poetic exaggeration when He said,

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“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

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On the other hand, a Bible reader might maim himself unnecessarily if he fails to recognize the hyperbole in Jesus’ statement that we should cut off our hands and gouge out our eyes to avoid sin (Matthew 5:29-30).

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Like all people who have ever spoken or written, biblical authors use different styles of communication at different times.

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Of course, everything the Bible affirms is true, regardless of its literary genre.

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Still, every time we open our Bibles, we must determine what style of communication is being used and read accordingly.

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As a primer, here are a few of the literary styles used in Scripture and some rules for interpreting them taken from Robert Stein’s helpful book, “A Basic Guide to Interpreting the Bible.”

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— Historical narrative recounts events and is meant to be understood literally — not as fable. In this vein, Article XIII of the Chicago Statement on Biblical Hermeneutics insists that literary techniques not be used to evade historical accounts. For instance, some scholars have tried to fictionalize the story of Jonah and the fish, but Christ treats Jonah as a real person in Matthew 12:40-42, and so should we. More than 40 percent of the Old Testament and nearly 60 percent of the New is historical narrative, including much of the material in the Gospels and Acts.

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— Songs and poetry are geared toward evoking emotion rather than speaking with scientific accuracy. With biblical poetry, the reader must determine the author’s message without misconstruing symbolism as narrative description. For example, the song in Exodus 15 poetically describes Pharaoh’s army as being “thrown into the  sea” (15:1) even though it actually followed the Israelites through the parted waters before God sent them crashing back down.

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— Proverbs are pithy sayings that express general truths or rules of thumb; they don’t convey ironclad guarantees. A classic example is Proverbs 22:6, “Train up a child in the way he should go; even when he is old he will not depart from it.” While parental training generally sets the course for a child’s life, there are exceptions.

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— Parables are fictional stories that illustrate spiritual points. Generally, a parable teaches one basic point and is not intended as an extended comparison in which every detail has spiritual significance. About a third of Jesus’ teachings are in parables, including the story of the sower and soils in Luke 8 and the lost sheep in Luke 15.

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— Idioms are expressions with meanings not derived from the normal meanings of the words in them. In modern English, our idioms include “raining cats and dogs” and “kick the bucket.” In the Bible you will find idioms like “their hearts melted” to describe a loss of courage and “the apple of His eye” to describe being precious in God’s sight.

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The list could go on, but you get the idea. Unless we know what style of communication a biblical author is using and how to interpret it, we may wonder if archaeologists have ever found the tombs of the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal Son.

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As immense man of wisdom Herb Alvarez says, imparting the Word can be done by 1)  Parable   2)   fellowship/sisterhood group dialogue     3) one-on-one discourse.

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And there can be 3 roles  —   1)  leader Paul     2)  conciliator/intermediary Barnabas    3)  acolyte Timothy.

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Herb Alvarez’ dearest wife and wondrous agent of our Messiah to the forsaken of society, Sistah’ Clara Alvarez   —

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/04/03/in-praise-of-sistah-clara-alvarez-under-his-wings-social-ministry/

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https://curtisnarimatsu.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/in-praise-of-peacemakerproblem-solver-sista-clara-alvarez-proverbs-151-a-soft-answer-turns-away-wrath/

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Our fleshly spirit of fear is cowardice/defeat by suffering needlessly.    

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Conversely, our spiritual fear of God is about obedience to Thy Heavenly Father’s Highest Power, and about carrying out God’s compassion and love for us all, though we suffer in this earthly realm.

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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fear_of_God#Christianity

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The Fear of God is felt because one understands the “fearful expectation of judgement” (Hebrews 10:27).

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Still, this is not a fear that leads one to despair,

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rather it must be coupled with trust, and most importantly, love.

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In Psalms 130:3-4, it is said, “If you, O Lord, kept a record of sins, O Lord, who could stand?

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But with you there is forgiveness; therefore you are feared.”

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The first mention of the fear of God in the Hebrew Bible is in Genesis 22:12, where Abraham is commended for putting his trust in God. The New Testament book of Hebrews comments on this event by explaining, “Abraham, when he was tested, offered up Isaac, and he who had received the promises was in the act of offering up his only son, of whom it was said, ‘Through Isaac shall your offspring be named.’ He considered that God was able even to raise him from the dead, from which he did receive him back.” (Heb 11:17-19).

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Because of this passage many Christians conclude that Abraham’s fear of God was an act of trust in God, that God would give Isaac back to Abraham.

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Others believe that Abraham’s fear of God was his willingness to obey God, even though it would mean losing his Son. 

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Many Jews and Christians believe the fear of God to be devotion itself, rather than a sense of being frightened of God.

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It can also mean fear of God’s judgment.   The fear of God is described in Proverbs 8:13 as “the hatred of evil.”

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Throughout the Bible it is said to bring many rewards.

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Conversely, not fearing God is said to result in Divine retribution.

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Some translations of the Bible, such as the New International Version, sometimes replace the word “fear” with “reverence.”

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This is because the Fear of the Lord incorporates more than simple fear.

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As Robert B. Strimple says, “There is the convergence of awe, reverence, adoration, honor, worship, confidence, thankfulness, love, and, yes, fear.”

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3 Responses to In praise of literalist and symbolist Herb Alvarez: John 14:6 I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

  1. Pingback: In praise of Herb Alvarez: The symbol [Scripture reading] is not the thing [prompting of the Spirit] it represents — True interpretation depends neither on historical inquiry nor on erudite literary analysis but on attentiveness to the promptings of

  2. Pingback: In praise of Herb Alvarez & the House Church phenomenon | Curtis Narimatsu

  3. Pingback: In praise of Herb Alvarez: If you are a leader, do you lead your people to the throne (throne of God — Protestant) or do you force your people into retreat (from oppressive government — e.g. Jehovah’s Witnesses)?? “Saving soulsR

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