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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) extreme unction (Read 1,453 times)
Seawolf
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #20 - Oct 9th, 2017 at 6:40pm
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Running Deer wrote on Oct 9th, 2017 at 5:41pm:
Are any among you suffering?  They should pray.  Are any cheerful?  They should sing songs of praise.  Are any among you sick?  They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord.  The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed.  James 5:13-16, NRSV (emphasis mine).

This passage clearly says that the sick ought to have the presbyters pray over them and anoint them with oil, not just any Christian.  The passage also says that this action will cause their sins to be forgiven.  Note that the forgiveness is in the passive tense, which implies that it's not the presbyter who has the power to forgive.

So I believe the passage you are quoting is specifically for believers who have already accepted Christ, not for unbelievers.  As I pointed out YOU must first repent and accept Christ yourself before you are saved.  Nothing I have ever read in scripture designates anyone to pray for salvation for someone who has not asked specifically for it.  This verse is speaking regarding the faith and actions by believers for believers.
  


"Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure (and) which insures to the good eternal happiness, are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments."

Charles Carroll, signer of the DOI
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #21 - Oct 9th, 2017 at 6:48pm
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The Power of Confession (5:16)

    "If he has sinned, he will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed." (5:15-16)

Why should confession of sins be so controversial? The Roman Catholic Church institutionalized confession into the Sacrament of Penance (including confession and absolution) by the Tenth Century, based on James 5:16; Matthew 16:19; and John 20:23. During the Reformation, the Protestants protested against the power of the Church, and refused to acknowledge Penance as a sacrament. Confession need only be made to God, they would argue, and not to a priest. Luther taught "the priesthood of the believer."

But I think that we Protestants have thrown the baby out with the bathwater. The roots of the Christian movement were in John the Baptist, who made confessing one's sins part of baptism (Matthew 3:6).

As a pastor I know that some people cannot be freed from certain sins until they will confess them to someone they trust. The Twelve Step Movement, developed in large part by evangelical Anglican priest Sam Shoemaker, took these core principles straight out of the Bible:

    Step 4: Made a searching and fearless moral inventory of ourselves.
    Step 5: Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being, the exact nature of our wrongs.
    Step 6: Were entirely ready to have God remove all the defects of character.

In this kind of encounter, by confessing one's sins to a Christian, the person is making himself accountable for his sin. He is piercing the darkness of this secret that has locked him in this sin for a long time. Once this is done, he can finally let go of this sin to God. Refusal to confess a sin can sometimes mean that the person is still nursing and coddling the sin, and secretly enjoying it. The Christian friend can assure the person making a confession of Almighty God's forgiveness based on 1 John 1:9.

Notice that neither an elder nor a priest is the designated confessor, but Christian believers in general. James says, "Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective" (5:16). After confession comes prayer, and from the prayer of faith comes healing.

http://www.jesuswalk.com/james/8_prayer.htm
  


"Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure (and) which insures to the good eternal happiness, are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments."

Charles Carroll, signer of the DOI
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #22 - Oct 9th, 2017 at 6:50pm
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The above link further clarifies my point that this is about two believers or more, not an unbeliever.  There were no such things as a catholic Priest when James wrote this, this letter was meant for fellow believers.
  


"Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure (and) which insures to the good eternal happiness, are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments."

Charles Carroll, signer of the DOI
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #23 - Oct 9th, 2017 at 8:04pm
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So why was George Marsh burned?

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Marsh_(martyr)


150 yards from my house.
  

Under Capitalism, Man exploits Man.

Under Communism, it's the exact opposite.
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #24 - Oct 10th, 2017 at 7:43pm
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Seawolf wrote on Oct 9th, 2017 at 6:40pm:
So I believe the passage you are quoting is specifically for believers who have already accepted Christ, not for unbelievers.


Correct, and Extreme Unction is given only to Catholics, not just anyone.
  

"If cousins, I would much prefer to marry one my Neanderthal relatives than a screeching chimpanzee which might bite my face off as has happened recently. Of course, chimps are not even a human species so procreation between humans and chimps is out of the question." - joe_christian, on sex
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #25 - Oct 10th, 2017 at 9:35pm
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Running Deer wrote on Oct 10th, 2017 at 7:43pm:
Correct, and Extreme Unction is given only to Catholics, not just anyone.

I understand, it is not scriptural but I get what you are saying.
  


"Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure (and) which insures to the good eternal happiness, are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments."

Charles Carroll, signer of the DOI
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #26 - Oct 11th, 2017 at 10:22am
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Fuddology, straight from the "Reverend" Elmer Fudd, OBT (Order of Bonehead Theologians), based on his "extensive" research and life experience.  But first the verses from James 5:

13 Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. Is anyone cheerful? Let him sing psalms. 14 Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord. 15 And the prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise him up. And if he has committed sins, he will be forgiven. 16 Confess your trespasses[e] to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed.

As stated earlier, the reformers and current Protestants have differing opinions on what is being taught here.  All of them agree it does not require a priest to administer last rites in order to gain entrance to heaven and that confession of sin to a priest is not necessary.  (They also agree there is no such distinction between mortal and venial sin, but that's for another thread.)

Here's what Fudd believes is being taught: believers are instructed to pray for one another, and that requires knowing of needs for which to pray.  Elder is a somewhat generic term and in this case means "congregational leaders."  Not necessarily pastor or pastors. All believers have a duty to pray for one another, but congregational leaders are held to a somewhat higher standard.

The "prayer of faith" is referring to the prayer of salvation, and the sickness from which it will save is the lostness of one's soul.  This verse is saying that salvation is possible right up to the last minute of life.  There are parables that teach this, too, one of them being the one where Jesus defends the fact that those who come late to the harvest get the same "pay" as those who came early.  And the prayer of faith means the Lord will "raise him up" unto heaven upon his passing from this life.  (Clearly last rites administered by Catholic priests seldom result in a person being healed physically and "raised up" from his sickbed.  They don't even pretend it's for that purpose, even.) The prayer of faith will result in the forgiveness of sins no matter when that prayer takes place, even on a deathbed, and the presence of a clergyman or anointing of oil has nothing to do with it.

We are instructed to confess our trespasses to one another (not a clergyman) and be healed, and the healing it's talking about is the restoration of earthly relationships.

Even though I call this Fuddology, I did not come up with it on my own.  I ain't that smart or close to the Creator.  But I know people who are, and I know of people who were who wrote what they knew.

And I do believe that Catholics clearly practice that a priest is required to get to Jesus.  They may not say it that plainly in their dogma, but each of the seven "sacraments" requires a priest.  If a priest cannot be found, then I think a lesser officer (like a deacon) might do in a pinch.  But the parish priest is clearly held out as the gatekeeper to eternal life, having the power even to deny it to someone if he refuses to give last rites.  And that just ain't biblical.  All it does is elevate the clergy to a status not taught in the New Testament. (Nor is it biblical to believe there are ANY "sacraments," let alone 7, that "convey grace" once salvation has occurred.)

I am not sure it was even taught in the Old Testament, though clearly temple priests had considerable authority.  But I don't believe they were ever given the authority of "gatekeepers" to eternal life.
  

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Re: extreme unction
Reply #27 - Oct 11th, 2017 at 7:42pm
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Seawolf wrote on Oct 10th, 2017 at 9:35pm:
I understand, it is not scriptural but I get what you are saying.


I still don't understand how you say the practice isn't scriptural when they literally do exactly what St. James said to do.  Sick Christian, calls a presbyter, presbyter anoints sick with oil, and prays for sick Christian's sins to be forgiven.  There are plenty of obscure and vague passages open to interpretation, but I don't know how this one could be any more straightforward.

Perhaps sola scriptura is not so sola.
  

"If cousins, I would much prefer to marry one my Neanderthal relatives than a screeching chimpanzee which might bite my face off as has happened recently. Of course, chimps are not even a human species so procreation between humans and chimps is out of the question." - joe_christian, on sex
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #28 - Oct 11th, 2017 at 8:00pm
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EF wrote on Oct 11th, 2017 at 10:22am:
As stated earlier, the reformers and current Protestants have differing opinions on what is being taught here.  All of them agree it does not require a priest to administer last rites in order to gain entrance to heaven and that confession of sin to a priest is not necessary.


I don't think the Catholics teach that a Christian goes to Hell simply for not having the Extreme Unction performed.  (Are there any actual Catholics around to confirm this?)  I think they might spend longer in Purgatory, though.

As for confessing sins to priests, that's a whole other argument.

Quote:
Elder is a somewhat generic term and in this case means "congregational leaders."  Not necessarily pastor or pastors.


Again, the word in Greek is presbuteros, which is usually interpreted to mean "pastor", as is the Greek word episkopos.  Perhaps that's a misinterpretation, but it's a long-running one and a reasonable reading of the term.

Quote:
The "prayer of faith" is referring to the prayer of salvation, and the sickness from which it will save is the lostness of one's soul.


This seems wrong.  For starters, the prayer of faith to is probably the prayer of the elder, which was just mentioned in the prior verse.  This passage doesn't mention the sick person praying.  For seconds, there's no indication that when James asks, "Is any among you sick?" that he means anything other than ordinary illness. 

Quote:
the presence of a clergyman or anointing of oil has nothing to do with it.


Then why is the sick person supposed to call for the elders of the church, have them anoint the sick with oil, and pray over them, if it has "nothing to do" with what's going on?

Quote:
I am not sure it was even taught in the Old Testament, though clearly temple priests had considerable authority.  But I don't believe they were ever given the authority of "gatekeepers" to eternal life.


The OT says almost nothing about the afterlife.  Not surprisingly, Jews don't consider it an important thing to worry about.
  

"If cousins, I would much prefer to marry one my Neanderthal relatives than a screeching chimpanzee which might bite my face off as has happened recently. Of course, chimps are not even a human species so procreation between humans and chimps is out of the question." - joe_christian, on sex
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Re: extreme unction
Reply #29 - Oct 11th, 2017 at 9:23pm
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Running Deer wrote on Oct 11th, 2017 at 7:42pm:
I still don't understand how you say the practice isn't scriptural when they literally do exactly what St. James said to do.  Sick Christian, calls a presbyter, presbyter anoints sick with oil, and prays for sick Christian's sins to be forgiven.  There are plenty of obscure and vague passages open to interpretation, but I don't know how this one could be any more straightforward.

Perhaps sola scriptura is not so sola.

It is straight forward as I have already stated.  It was written, not for unbelievers, but believers who are told to pray over other believers with afflictions or who battle sin in their lives but it makes no mention of praying over the lost for the redemption of their sins.  I think we are saying the same thing.  Remember, this is not written for a Catholic Priest, as there was no such thing as Catholicism when James wrote this letter to the church (body of believers in Christ).
  


"Without morals a republic cannot subsist any length of time; they therefore who are decrying the Christian religion, whose morality is so sublime and pure (and) which insures to the good eternal happiness, are undermining the solid foundation of morals, the best security for the duration of free governments."

Charles Carroll, signer of the DOI
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