Lecture 8

Starts with a review of the previous session.

Leb (heart)
The issue of leb (heart) is unique in Old and New Testaments.

Apologetics- I don’t have too much confidence that there are arguments to make someone believe. I don’t believe it is possible. God’s revelation is overpowering evidence. yet something very striking: no where else is there the us of the word heart that we find consistently in the OT.

The heart is the whole of man in his unity.

Book by F. H. Von Meyenfeldt Het Hart (Leb, Lebab) in het Oude Testament in 1960s lectures in Canada The meaning of ethos Toronto: AACS, 1963.
[Section published in Toward a Biblical View of Man: Some Readings ed A. H. De Graaf and J. Olthuis. Toronto: ICS, 1978.]

[long quote from this paper]

Leb used 854 times in OT
The deepest sense of ‘heart’ is the genuine, authentic man. Here any dualism between a detached body and a separated soul is out of the question. The heart is distinguishable but not separable from the person as a whole.

We therefore call the heart the focus of religion.
When we compare briefly both ‘heart’ and ‘soul’ in the Old Testament, we find (1) that ‘heart’ is man, completely speaking, and (2) ‘soul’ is man concretely speaking.

Man is a religious totality.

[end of tape no 7]

1 Sam 16:7
Job 2:13

The deepest sense of heart is the genuine authentic man.
Heart has a predominantly religious sense

  • it determines direction and origin
  • the pivot of conversion

[Ecclesiastes fear God – this is the whole man (duty is not in original)]

318 times religious use of heart.

Heart is the receiver of the word of the Lord.

Heart is not the sum of my parts – but where I am singly ‘I’.
It seems to refer to the whole man, totality of me.
In his central religious focus, in his root as a religious being.

Have to distinguish between cult (ritual and liturgy) and religion (our situation – not something we do). Religion is the pre-cognition of ritual and liturgy.

Heart = the whole of me, not as the sum of my parts, me as in concentrated unity – where I am singly ‘I’

Heart and soil are more or less the same things – the whole man, but also the body refers to the whole man.

Heart, is the whole man as seen inwardly, in the religious directing, the centre of his life.

Body is the whole ,an – as seen outwardly in the great variety of bodily functions, activities ie playing the piano, run a race, think out geometrical problems, appreciate a sunset, …

There is no such thing as mind – mind does not exist!

Man is a religious being – our created situation, before God, under the covenant with God.

Brunner: ‘man is a relational being’
Religion is a relationship. It is not just man on his own – no such thing as autonomous man in the scripture.

William of Occam Deus ex lex
We are not free from the ordinances of God Jer 31:36 – fixed order of nature.

The word of God sets limits/ bounds.
All God’s law has a covenantal purpose.
One thing that the scripture reiterates: God’s faithfulness, faithfulness to his once given word.

In the past man has been viewed as having faculties. Augustine (AD 354-430) had a pattern – faculty psychology.
Traditionally psychology deals with man’s psyche.
Faculty is a Latin word meaning a ‘power’.
A view of man’s psyche: 3 powers –thinking, feeling and willing.
Will is co-ordinate with the other two.
Three co-ordinate powers in man’s psyche.
Augustine was not consistent. he made the will equal to the heart (kardia)
Benjamin Franklin – reason is used to find a reason for what a man wills to believe.
Willing is more fundamental than reason.

Man is a religious being (covenantal).
The word of God is a word of covenant.
Read my ‘Christianity and Humanism lecture. Homo Respondez – I must respond to the word of God.

[end of side 1 of tape]

The Greeks new no creator – they think of man as autonomous and cosmic having life in itself. The whole cosmos has its explanation within itself.
(Autonomous = self law)

Man has been descrined in this tradition as rational and moral … man is first of all basically rational. How do we get moral following from rational?

rational imples analysisng differences, distinguish conceptually, take it apart see how it hangs together. Distinguish differences.

If man is able to distinguish differences, then he should be able to distinguish between what is god and what is evil. then he I responsible to choose good.
He derives his moral being from his rational being. To be moral is one way of being rational.
A lot of people call moral and ethical religious.

Man is subject to law. Law reveals the structure of creation.

Truth (doesn’t mean knowledge)

In modern philosophy, truth has become equivalent to knowledge.
Truth is propositions, judgments.
Truth in modern philosophy is an epistemological concept. In the scriptures this is not the case, it is ontic.

ontology = theory about what is
ontic = what is

Truth refers to what is.
Truth means that which you can count on, that which abides that which is reliable, trustworthy. It will remain what it was created to be.
Ps 89: 49

Read ‘Introduction’ the Relation of the Bible to Learning pp 9-34
There will be an exam/quiz

There is a great disparity between the philosophical tradition and biblical revelation.
Christians who have worked in the philosophical tradition have accommodated to Greek thought patterns. It has become so embedded in Christian thinking.

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