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    World Religion & Speculative Theology - Thread: Do the ends justify the means?

    1. #1
      MennoSota is offline Expert Member
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      Do the ends justify the means?

      Is there ever a time when the ends justify the means?
      Corrie Ten Boom and family his Jews in Amsterdam during WWII. She felt that lying to spare others was acceptable. He sister said no. There is never an acceptable time to do what is wrong.
      Churches around us may look the other way when it means they get money in their account.
      Can we ever justify the means because the end result is favorable to us?

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    3. #2
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      I am surprised no one has replied...

      When murderers ask you to help find them more victims, you do not help them...
      Indeed, diverting them from their evil is a good thing...
      Nazis looking for Jend ws are helped most by not being helped...
      And sometimes by being prevented from doing what they seek to do...

      Personally, I simply ask God's forgiveness...
      For being so sinful that I can think of no better way...
      And inwardly I pray for the person I am about to lie to...
      Remembering also intended victims...

      I have not done so in decades...
      These days, I don't know...
      Truth is addictive...
      Martyrdom not undesirable...

      The basic idea is to do the best one can for the person before you...
      Christ healed Pilate's relationship with his brother...
      Unseen and unacknowledged...
      Except by posterity...

      God places us in every situation...
      Each is an opportunity to be of help...
      He will often also show us how...
      Yet there are "Devil's alternatives"...

      In the face of these...
      "Whose death do you prefer?"
      A possible response is not to participate...
      "Do whichever evil you love..." is a viable response...

      In the Service of our Lord...
      We are to care for souls...
      To bring them to Christ...
      God will lead the pure in heart...

      Arsenios

    4. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by MennoSota View Post
      Is there ever a time when the ends justify the means?
      Corrie Ten Boom and family his Jews in Amsterdam during WWII. She felt that lying to spare others was acceptable. He sister said no. There is never an acceptable time to do what is wrong.
      Churches around us may look the other way when it means they get money in their account.
      Can we ever justify the means because the end result is favorable to us?
      James 2:24 So you see, a person is justified by works, and not by faith alone. 25 Likewise, we read of Rahab, the prostitute, that she was acknowledged and saved, because she welcomed the spies, and showed them another way to leave.

      Joshua 2: 1 Joshua sent two spies secretly from Shittim with the following order “Go and look over the land well, especially the city of Jericho.” The spies went and as soon as they came to Jericho, they went to the house of the prostitute named Rahab. 2 But someone told the king of Jericho: “Some Israelites have entered here tonight to spy on us.” 3 So the king of Jericho sent word to Rahab: “Send those men out of your house because they came to spy on the land.” 4 But the woman had hidden them, so she said: “It is true; they came to my house but I did not know where they came from. 5 And at nightfall, shortly before the city gates were to be closed, they went out. I do not know where they went, but hurry and you will surely overtake them.” 6 The woman had hidden them on the roof of the house, under the stalks of flax which she kept there. 7 The pursuers went to search for them by the road leading to the valley of the Jordan, and as they went out, the city gates were closed.

      Was Rahab sinning by telling a lie to save the spies? You decide for yourself. But Remember what saint James wrote. He commended Rahab's action to save the spies. Did the end (saving them) justify the means (telling a lie)?
      Pope Gregory I was well known for his alms to the poor, and he gave quite generously of the riches donated to the Church by the wealthy people of Rome. Everything from money to land was given to the poor in some fashion. He made clear to his subordinates that their duty was to relieve the distress faced by the poor.

      He ordered his clergy to go out into the streets to find and care for the poor in person.

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    6. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee View Post
      James 2:24 So you see, a person is justified by works, and not by faith alone. 25 Likewise, we read of Rahab, the prostitute, that she was acknowledged and saved, because she welcomed the spies, and showed them another way to leave.

      Joshua 2: 1 Joshua sent two spies secretly from Shittim with the following order “Go and look over the land well, especially the city of Jericho.” The spies went and as soon as they came to Jericho, they went to the house of the prostitute named Rahab. 2 But someone told the king of Jericho: “Some Israelites have entered here tonight to spy on us.” 3 So the king of Jericho sent word to Rahab: “Send those men out of your house because they came to spy on the land.” 4 But the woman had hidden them, so she said: “It is true; they came to my house but I did not know where they came from. 5 And at nightfall, shortly before the city gates were to be closed, they went out. I do not know where they went, but hurry and you will surely overtake them.” 6 The woman had hidden them on the roof of the house, under the stalks of flax which she kept there. 7 The pursuers went to search for them by the road leading to the valley of the Jordan, and as they went out, the city gates were closed.

      Was Rahab sinning by telling a lie to save the spies? You decide for yourself. But Remember what saint James wrote. He commended Rahab's action to save the spies. Did the end (saving them) justify the means (telling a lie)?
      Yes, Rahab sinned. God's grace is greater than our sin. Should we continue in sin that grace may abound?
      James commended Rahab's faith in the God of Israel. He did not commend her lie.

    7. #5
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      Quote Originally Posted by MennoSota View Post
      Yes, Rahab sinned. God's grace is greater than our sin. Should we continue in sin that grace may abound?
      James commended Rahab's faith in the God of Israel. He did not commend her lie.
      Your reply looks like it is hasty to condemn. Rahab is not criticised for lying in any passage of the holy scriptures that I can recall so why do you write "Rahab sinned" as if you had divine revelation to teach that Rahab's lie to the Jericho rulers was a sin.
      Pope Gregory I was well known for his alms to the poor, and he gave quite generously of the riches donated to the Church by the wealthy people of Rome. Everything from money to land was given to the poor in some fashion. He made clear to his subordinates that their duty was to relieve the distress faced by the poor.

      He ordered his clergy to go out into the streets to find and care for the poor in person.

    8. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee View Post
      Your reply looks like it is hasty to condemn. Rahab is not criticised for lying in any passage of the holy scriptures that I can recall so why do you write "Rahab sinned" as if you had divine revelation to teach that Rahab's lie to the Jericho rulers was a sin.
      Does the Bible condone lying or is lying a sin?

    9. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by MennoSota View Post
      Does the Bible condone lying or is lying a sin?
      Didn't you ask if the ends justify the means? Rahab's lie is the means by which the spies were saved. Saving the spies is commended by God. And Rahab is praised. So you tell me, did the ends justify the means in the story?
      Last edited by MoreCoffee; 07-07-2018 at 01:12 PM.
      Pope Gregory I was well known for his alms to the poor, and he gave quite generously of the riches donated to the Church by the wealthy people of Rome. Everything from money to land was given to the poor in some fashion. He made clear to his subordinates that their duty was to relieve the distress faced by the poor.

      He ordered his clergy to go out into the streets to find and care for the poor in person.

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      Quote Originally Posted by MoreCoffee View Post
      Didn't you ask if the ends justify the means? Rahab'e lie is the means by which the spies were saved. Saving the spies is commended by God. And Rahab is praised. So you tell me, did the ends justify the means in the story?
      This does not mean that the ends justify the means. It means that God uses sinners and their actions to his glory.
      Rahab is commended for the faith God gave her, not for her lying.
      Does God condone lying?

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    13. #9
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      A sin is still a sin even if it helps out someone in the end.
      "Christianity does not require more work but more trust." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "Bearing fruit does not make you a branch. A branch is a branch because it grows from the vine." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "A Christian's life is not defined by what the Christian does. It is defined by Christ and what He has done for us." Pr. Rolf David Preus

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      Quote Originally Posted by MennoSota View Post
      Rahab sinned.
      No she didn't...

      Had she betrayed the spies,
      THEN...
      She would have sinned...

      But she did NOT betray the SERVANTS of God to God's ENEMIES...

      THAT would BE a SIN...

      So you are mistaken in this approach...

      Arsenios

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