The sheep and goats parable

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I do not understand why we cannot take the parable at face value and interpret it as saying that any service done unto people with intense needs is a service done unto Jesus.

Why do some people believe God or Jesus is so petty that people helping others have to declare that they are doing it to give glory to God? Is it not enough that they are acting as children of God should act? Why make God so needy and self-centered?
I always have taken it as you describe. It's pretty straight forward. The part about his answer when they asked about "when have we..." kind of clinches it for me. There's nothing in that parable about having faith, just that helping others is helping Jesus/God and not doing so means you did not help God/Jesus. The harshness is, I think, just Jesus showing righteous anger as prophets often do. Modern social activists do the same at times. I think the key point is nowhere does he say that faith will save the goats nor does it help the sheep. It is their actions that matter here. Faith might have guided the sheep but it might equally have guided the goats. How often do we see Christian and other religious people turning their noses up at those in need for "not having sufficient faith" or "being fallen"?
"Then they also will answer, ‘Lord, when was it that we saw you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison and did not take care of you?’ 45 Then he will answer them, ‘Truly I tell you, just as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to me.’ 46 And these will go away into eternal punishment but the righteous into eternal life.”
 
The fate of the goats is still troubling to me.

Abraham had trouble with that too as the old goat was suggesting that the son's lights be put out rather that the RAM's ...

Played havoc with the meme system ... what we think of as the depth of memories previous buried as sanctemonia ...

The sacred and hidden nature of truth is thus illuminated as virtue ... in the secular world lies are more valued in downgrading those that call this home ... commercially pushing homelssness out there ... and all this gross activity without a thought ... antipathae?
 
Sometimes Jesus used hyperbole and he certainly got frustrated with his disciples on occasion. Maybe his other followers frustrated him as well.

The other possiblity is that the gospel writer had an end times agenda and put words into His mouth.
 
Sometimes Jesus used hyperbole and he certainly got frustrated with his disciples on occasion. Maybe his other followers frustrated him as well.

The other possiblity is that the gospel writer had an end times agenda and put words into His mouth.

Imagine the heavier denominations of koine being flipped loudly in a resonant collector system! It could cause a wringing of all hands on deck!
 
The other possiblity is that the gospel writer had an end times agenda and put words into His mouth.
And maybe Jesus himself had an end times agenda. A lot of Jewish religious groups in that time did (Pharisees, Essenes), as discussed upthread. This parable, to me, strikes me as more "Jesus" as I understand him than some other passages.

The whole "someone put words in his mouth" thing is risky because the reductio ad absurdum on that is that Jesus never existed and that the early church and gospel writers made up the whole thing. And there are those who argue that. Did the writers distort or add to his words? Sure. But once you make that argument, you are accepting that Jesus is, to some degree, as much a mythological or literary figure as an historical one and you need to decide how far you can go with that.

I think he was an historical figure myself, but remain somewhat unsure of how much of what was written about him applies to the historical figure vs. what people thought about that figure after his lifetime. Certainly, the supernatural bits come across to me as mythmaking. It's more the teachings and concrete events like the Crucifixion that seem historical to me.
 
@Mendalla
Jesus indeed had an end times agenda and I very much see him as an apocalyptic preacher.

My uncertainty is in regards to how He saw His own role. Did he really believe he would be coming to earth again to usher in a new age?

Or did the gospel writers project this onto Him as their Christology developed after the crucifixion?
 
Or did the gospel writers project this onto Him as their Christology developed after the crucifixion?
That's one of the things I'd put myself as unsure on. He might have seen himself literally returning but he migh also have seen himself as the harbinger of another Christ to come, much as John the Baptist was harbinger for him.
 
That's one of the things I'd put myself as unsure on. He might have seen himself literally returning but he migh also have seen himself as the harbinger of another Christ to come, much as John the Baptist was harbinger for him.
Yes that's a possibility for sure. In the Jewish culture of the day, they were quite convinced that prophets such as Moses and Elijah could reappear.

Even today, there is a place set for Elijah at the Passover seder. Or an empty chair. I understand this is symbolic rather than literal in contemporary Judaism.

Christians sometimes leave candles in the window for the Magi. Pretty much the same idea I would say.
 
I do not understand why we cannot take the parable at face value and interpret it as saying that any service done unto people with intense needs is a service done unto Jesus.
Duh, because oral tradition circulates individual sayings of Jesus without accompanying explanation of suppressed assumptions and this "parable" omits reference to the disciple's motives. Among the Jesus texts that specify purpose is Matthew 5:16, where the "hopos" purpose clause males it clear that the purpose of "shining your light" is to inspire the beneficiaries to "give glory to your Father in heaven."
Why do some people believe God or Jesus is so petty that people helping others have to declare that they are doing it to give glory to God? Is it not enough that they are acting as children of God should act? Why make God so needy and self-centered?
If you consider it "petty" for a Christian to consider service inseparable from other acts of worship, you don't belong in Christian ministry.
 
I do not understand why we cannot take the parable at face value and interpret it as saying that any service done unto people with intense needs is a service done unto Jesus.
There is no reason why you can't take the parable at face value and interpret it as saying what you think it says ---

But -------just because that is the way you want to interpret it does not mean that there isn't a Spiritual interpretation needed -----

There is the Logos Written Word and then there is the Rhema Spoken Word -------two different ways to interpret the Word who is Jesus Himself ----
Why do some people believe God or Jesus is so petty that people helping others have to declare that they are doing it to give glory to God?
Maybe this will help you understand or maybe it won't -------

God deserves for us to Give Him the Glory-in all we do ------

He sent His Son to give us our Chance to be heaven bound again ----when we screwed up -----
In my view ---anyone who thinks that God is petty that He needs to be glorified has no understanding of who God is and what He has done for us ------very sad

From Got Questions


To glorify God is to honor Him with praise or worship. God is glorious; that is, He is great and magnificent—He is exceptionally grand in His nature and deeds. “Full of splendor and majesty is his work” (Psalm 111:3, ESV). When we glorify Him, we acknowledge His greatness and splendor and laud Him for it. When we “give Him glory,” as all the world is told to do in Revelation 14:7, we direct our praise, adoration, thanksgiving, and worship to Him who alone is worthy.
Scripture makes our responsibility to glorify God evident from cover to cover.

Is it not enough that they are acting as children of God should act? Why make God so needy and self-centered?
True Christians don't see God as needy -----they want to Glorify Him and please Him ----and they are very Grateful to Him for sending His Only Son to shed His blood and die a horrible death so that anyone who wants to accept Him can have eternal life -----

No greater Agape is there than that -----

By your comments you seem to resent God ----and yet talk about how you rely on the Holy Mystery -----who is God -----very strange that you can Mock God by saying He is needy and rely on Him at the same time -----very stranger thinking ???????
 
Duh, because oral tradition circulates individual sayings of Jesus without accompanying explanation of suppressed assumptions and this "parable" omits reference to the disciple's motives. Among the Jesus texts that specify purpose is Matthew 5:16, where the "hopos" purpose clause males it clear that the purpose of "shining your light" is to inspire the beneficiaries to "give glory to your Father in heaven."

If you consider it "petty" for a Christian to consider service inseparable from other acts of worship, you don't belong in Christian ministry.
I did not say it was petty for a Christian to consider service inseparable from other acts of worship. Everything I do is out of my sense of connection to and gratitude for the Holy Mystery. I did write that a God that demands everything be done to glorify God sounds pretty petty and needy. As I wrote elsewhere, that sounds like a pretty small God, like small people who demand recognition for everything they do. People who cannot do what is right without receiving recognition and adulation are pretty insecure people.
 
Did Jesus suffer a Jesus syndrome because of Godly powers of overwhelming emotions? Thus the light was sub dude ... an under character ... humbled in the light?
 
People saying that the Parable doesn't mention Faith is a cop out statement ----

I say ----You can't please God without Saving Faith ----

In the parable the Sheep had great faith in Jesus and got their inheritance --eternal life
The Goats did not have the right faith and reaped what they sowed -----condemnation

God's Faith ---Saving Faith will propel the person into action ---and therefore God gets the Glory for the action taken -----

without-faith-impossible-please-God.html

In Hebrews 11, we learn about faith from the Bible’s Old Testament heroes. One crucial detail stands out in their lives: they placed their whole confidence in God, entrusting themselves into His hands.
The actions and accomplishments of these men and women proved that faith pleases God, and He rewards those who seek Him: “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Hebrews 11:6).

The author of the book of Hebrews points out two critical convictions of believers. First, “anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists.” Those who desire to draw near to God must have a deep-rooted belief that He is real.

Such belief is not mere intellectual knowledge but a wholehearted devotion to His presence and participation in every part of one’s life. Without a genuine conviction that God exists, it is impossible to have an intimate relationship with Him. Second, the Lord’s followers must believe “that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” This aspect of faith trusts in the character of God as a good, loving, generous, gracious, and merciful Father (James 1:17; Psalm 84:11; Lamentations 3:22–23). These two certainties are the groundwork of saving faith—a faith that pleases God.
 
AN INCIDENT THE EMBODIES THE MEANING OF THE SHEEP AND THE GOATS STORY
.
St. Francis was the spoiled son of a wealthy cloth merchant. He loved to hang with beautiful young women and other attractive successful people. He found the poorest of the poor, especially lepers, repulsive. He sought glory as a warrior knight, but his side was defeated in battle and he was temporarily jailed. Upon his release, the Holy Spirit began to work in his life in various stages. In one key visionary moment Christ told him, "Prefer bitterness to sweetness if you want to know me." This made no sense to him until one key moment when he was riding his horse and noticed a shabbily dressed leper begging for alms.. His initial impulse was to ride on by, but suddenly Francis grasped the meaning of Christ's visionary words.

He dismounted, approached the leper kissed him on his puss-filled cheek, and put money in his outstretched hand. Then he got back on his horse, looked back, and to his dismay, the leper had disappeared, dematerialized. Only then did Francis realize that Christ had come to him as a leper in disguise and that by showing compassion to lepers and the poorest of the poor. he was really loving Jesus through them and deepening his mystical connection with Jesus.
Thus, Frances learned the sweetness that is bestowed on one who lovingly embraces bitter predicaments.
 
And, yes, this approach says the Bible can bring us closer to Truth but is not itself Truth. As Borg suggested in Reading The Bible Again For The First Time (borrowing a Buddhist parable), it's the finger pointing to the Truth, not the Truth itself.
Oh, I remember my younger more heady days at WC: Original Sauce with my riffs on Finger Pointing to the Moon, religion without Religion, g_d without God lol
those were the days
I am not sure what you are saying. I have been Unitarian (i.e. not believing literally in the Trinity) since long before I had a word for it. It's an idea as old as Christianity, even if it has been considered a heresy at times (e.g. Michael Servetus was burned at the stake for his heresies, including advocating unitarianism).
It is difficult for me to remember the mental state I was in at the time, I think I was giddy, akin to how I often felt when I would lucid dream and tell someone in my dream that this was a dream :3An epiphanous state that I wanted you to share? I dunno exactly...
Interesting how you took/were inspired by my lil writing in the way you took it, as an answer to theoretical people as opposed to a question for Paradox3
(and UUism is neat. i found it quite encouraging, like people were encouraged to be encouraging to each other)
Whereas I would argue that service to others should be motivation in an of itself. Rewarding people for giving Glory to God instead of for simply being good people is a bit eff-d up, given how much crap has been done for the "Glory of God".

I used to automatically think like that
Now I have come to grok that Honouring God, Giving Glory to God isn't a bad thing?

(yeah, there are aspects of what do you give someone who has everything?)

It involves being Thankful and Greatful to God. Recognition of His Authority. Obedience (which includes things like prayer, following the 2 Greatest Commandments, speaking positively aboot people...). Honouring Him.

If it helps, think of it as a way to get out of your own way/be more selfless?

It doesn't have to be bad or scary. Tho I can understand why. We human beings can be quite willful :3

Not everything is a debate.
Which I don't think Mystic was trying to do in post #80? I think that is an important post to consider.
In fact, this place should be primarily about discussion, about exchanging ideas, not competitive debating.
Hallelewjah and pass the Frankencense!!! :3

I am glad none of us here are engaging in competitive debating :3
 
One must encompass the entire thing to understand the ultimate ... that missing Sophistication?

Yet still that enigma ... the choice to deny and exile parts of your self ... puzzling???

That should keep the twerps busy until heaven unravels ... basic fabric ... the shroud ... kind of nebulae!
 
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