Matthew 2:23

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Ulan
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by Ulan » Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:15 am

John2 wrote:
Sat Aug 25, 2018 3:16 pm
Regarding Jesus "eating and drinking" in Luke 7:33-35, I see it as being comparable to Luke 5:29-33:
Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

They said to him, “John’s disciples often fast and pray, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours go on eating and drinking.”
Just because the Pharisees interpreted John's fasting as meaning he had a demon doesn't mean he actually had one. And just because they interpreted Jesus eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners as meaning he was glutton and a winebibber doesn't mean he actually was one.
While I like the nazirite explanation, the following statment from Mk 14 doesn't make much sense if he never drank any wine:
24 He said to them, “This is my blood of the[g] covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.
Of course, if you think this is an interpolation, you have more options. However, why stress you would not drink any wine again if you didn't do so until that point?

On the other hand, verse 25 pretty much looks like nazirite vow in and itself. Most vows of this kind were rather short term. If this was a nazirite vow, then this would also explain why Jesus had to die as the first of the crucified. The sacrifice wasn't made in the presence of dead people that way.

Another option is that we look at a jumbled mess of traditions here.

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MrMacSon
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by MrMacSon » Mon Aug 27, 2018 2:03 pm

John T wrote:
Mon Aug 27, 2018 6:24 am
MrMacSon wrote:
Mon Aug 27, 2018 3:38 am
There is no definitive archaeological evidence there was even a village at Nazareth in the 1st c. (though it will now be hard to do many archaeological digs to find evidence b/c there's now a substantial town there; 40k I think).
"The excavation site located beneath the convent has been known since 1880, but it was never professionally excavated until the Nazareth Archaeological Project began its work in 2006."...BAR 12/01/2017

So, the mythicist argument that Nazareth did not exist due to lack of archaeological evidence was only true in that, no such archaeological digs had occurred before 2006.

....

Again, a mythicist is not going to believe anything that does not support their myth no matter what. They will always find an excuse no matter how ridiculous or lame.

With that being said, I am done with this thread unless the mythcists can provide actual evidence that disproves the recent findings of the professional archaeologists at Nazareth.

John T
I acknowledge absence of evidence does not mean evidence of absence: my comment that "(.. it will now be hard to do many archaeological digs to find evidence b/c there's now a substantial town there ..)" is a hat-tip to that.

The recent findings of archaeologists do not seem to be definitive. All that seems to have been dated are
  1. "fragments of pottery vessels from the Early Roman period (the first and second centuries CE)", and
  2. "several fragments of chalk vessels were found, which were only used by Jews in this period"
ie. contents of the house viz. --
MrMacSon wrote:
Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:30 pm

I can't get access to the article, but there's this
< . . . snip . . . >
...From the few written sources that there are*, we know that in the first century CE Nazareth was a small Jewish village*, located inside a valley. Until now a number of tombs from the time of Jesus were found in Nazareth; however, no settlement remains have been discovered that are attributed to this period”.

In the excavation a large broad wall that dates to the Mamluk period (the fifteenth century CE) was exposed that was constructed on top of and “utilized” the walls of an ancient building. This earlier building1 consisted of two rooms and a courtyard in which there was a rock-hewn cistern into which the rainwater was conveyed. The artifacts recovered from inside the building were few and mostly included fragments of pottery vessels from the Early Roman period (the first and second centuries CE). In addition, several fragments of chalk vessels were found, which were only used by Jews in this period because such vessels were not susceptible to becoming ritually unclean.

Another hewn pit, whose entrance was apparently camouflaged, was excavated and a few pottery sherds from the Early Roman period were found inside it ... http://www.antiquities.org.il/article_e ... ule_id=#as
* it would be interesting to know what those written sources are
1 It would be interesting to know if this building was dated with respect to the period of it's likely construction.

John2
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by John2 » Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:48 am

Ulan wrote:
Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:15 am
John2 wrote:
Sat Aug 25, 2018 3:16 pm
Regarding Jesus "eating and drinking" in Luke 7:33-35, I see it as being comparable to Luke 5:29-33:
Then Levi held a great banquet for Jesus at his house, and a large crowd of tax collectors and others were eating with them. But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law who belonged to their sect complained to his disciples, “Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and sinners?”

Jesus answered them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”

They said to him, “John’s disciples often fast and pray, and so do the disciples of the Pharisees, but yours go on eating and drinking.”
Just because the Pharisees interpreted John's fasting as meaning he had a demon doesn't mean he actually had one. And just because they interpreted Jesus eating and drinking with tax collectors and sinners as meaning he was glutton and a winebibber doesn't mean he actually was one.
While I like the nazirite explanation, the following statment from Mk 14 doesn't make much sense if he never drank any wine:
24 He said to them, “This is my blood of the[g] covenant, which is poured out for many. 25 Truly I tell you, I will never again drink of the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.
Of course, if you think this is an interpolation, you have more options. However, why stress you would not drink any wine again if you didn't do so until that point?

On the other hand, verse 25 pretty much looks like nazirite vow in and itself. Most vows of this kind were rather short term. If this was a nazirite vow, then this would also explain why Jesus had to die as the first of the crucified. The sacrifice wasn't made in the presence of dead people that way.

Another option is that we look at a jumbled mess of traditions here.
Great observation, Ulan. As I said, I'm happy either way. If Jesus was not a Nazirite (as per my prior assumption), fine, and if so, fine. At the most thus far (until you pointed out the above), I would say that it's hard to tell for sure. But here is Mark 14:22-25 for me to take a closer look at.
22While they were eating, Jesus took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to his disciples, saying, “Take it; this is my body.”

23Then he took a cup, and when he had given thanks, he gave it to them, and they all drank from it.

24“This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many,” he said to them. 25“Truly I tell you, I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God.”


I agree that v. 25 looks like a Nazirite vow, so there's at least that. Prior to that (and prior to my consideration of this passage), Jesus appears to me to walk a fine line. I'm still not convinced Jairus' daughter was dead in Mk. 5 or that Jesus drank wine in Luke 7. But yeah, Jesus says here, " I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new," and that sounds like he has drank wine before. But how long ago was that, I wonder? If Luke 7 isn't certain (and it doesn't seem to be to me, at least), what else is there? Is there not even one, clear reference to Jesus drinking wine somewhere?

Even the above passage, for example, says "while they were eating" (which incudes Jesus), but then it doesn't actually say that Jesus drank wine, only that he "took a cup," not "his" cup, though perhaps it could be inferred that it is "his"? No translation I see says "his" anyway, but there doesn't seem to be any kind "a" or "the" or "his" or such in the Greek. But who else's cup could it be, I suppose. But still, how certain is it that Jesus drank from this cup? At least with respect to Jesus eating, Mark is much clearer.

14:12-20:
12On the first day of the Festival of Unleavened Bread, when it was customary to sacrifice the Passover lamb, Jesus’ disciples asked him, “Where do you want us to go and make preparations for you to eat the Passover?”

13So he sent two of his disciples, telling them, “Go into the city, and a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him. 14Say to the owner of the house he enters, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is my guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’ 15He will show you a large room upstairs, furnished and ready. Make preparations for us there.”

16The disciples left, went into the city and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.

17When evening came, Jesus arrived with the Twelve. 18While they were reclining at the table eating, he said, “Truly I tell you, one of you will betray me—one who is eating with me.”

19They were saddened, and one by one they said to him, “Surely you don’t mean me?”

20“It is one of the Twelve,” he replied, “one who dips bread into the bowl with me."
Why is there nothing like this about Jesus drinking wine in Mark, not even in Mk. 14:22-25?

And again, I'm not trying to be nitpicky, just taking a closer look at what's there and setting aside for a moment my assumptions that Jesus did drink wine and touch dead people.
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John2
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by John2 » Wed Aug 29, 2018 5:03 pm

I was looking into Mk. 14:25 more and wasn't sure what to think until I saw something in Focant's The Gospel according to Mark: A Commentary that I think clears up the issue of whether Jesus drank wine or not and if Mk. 14.25 is a Nazirite vow.
His [Jesus'] sentence [in Mk. 14:25] begins with an interruption, a negative aspect: he will no longer drink from the fruit of the vine. In context, this means that his death is going to put an end to all table fellowship with his disciples. This is not an oath of Jesus ... but an indirect announcement of his approaching death.

https://books.google.com/books?id=REJNA ... ne&f=false
This makes sense. I'm willing to buy that Jesus drank wine at the Last Supper (if not also prior to it), and that all Jesus is saying here is that this is the last time he'll drink wine with his disciples until he comes back at the End Time. It goes with the flow of Mk. 14. They have a Passover seder (which I gather only Jesus knows will be his "last" supper), he says one of them will betray him (since the OT says so), then gives some new symbolism to the matzo bread (his body) and wine (his blood), then says he won't drink wine (or "the fruit of the vine," which I take to be wine) again until the End Time, because he is expecting to die and resurrect in accordance with his interpretation of the OT.

So while I suppose Mk. 14:25 is similar to a Nazirite oath, I don't think that is Jesus' intention here, particularly since he seems to know he will die soon (14:35-36: "he fell to the ground and prayed that if possible the hour might pass from him. “Abba, Father,” he said, “everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me").

So it seems like it would be essentially meaningless if it were a Nazirite vow, since it would have been possible for him to observe it for less than a day while he was on earth. And after that, are we supposed to picture the heavenly Jesus abstaining from some kind of heavenly wine while waiting to come back to earth and drink earthly wine with his disciples again? That seems weird to me. No, I think Jesus is just saying "This is the last time I will drink wine with you guys until I come back to earth after I die and resurrect," like Focant suggests.
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spin
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Re: Matthew 2:23 (Driving by,... ... well, in a hotel in Tallinn)

Post by spin » Fri Aug 31, 2018 4:07 am

I thought I'd dealt with most of the discourse in this thread variously in the past. Briefly,

1. the tsade is unaccountable. FC Burkitt did a survey of tsade transliterated as zeta over a 500 year period and found only ten exemplars, most of which were insignificant, with two exceptions: one an apparent mistake with Adoni-bezek confused as Adoni-zedek; the other, a foreign name, Zoar, rendered in Hebrew with a tsade (wrong direction) and rendered in LXX correctly by those who knew, while others transliterated it back into Greek with sigma, as expected. Netser (with tsade) as a source for Nazarene/etc is unsupportable.

2. the earliest manuscript evidence for Mt 2:23, P70bis has the toponym Nazara (not Nazareth), the language of the context reflecting Mt 4:13 which also features Nazara. This makes Nazara the dominant form in Mt. It is also the obvious back-form if one assumes that Nazarene were a gentilic, consider Magdalene/Magdala, Gadarene/Gadara.

3. Nazirite vows are irrelevant to the naziriteship of Jesus, who like Samson was born a Nazirite (as was Samuel according to a DSS copy of 1 Sam, hence Luke's link to Samuel through the magnificat in the birth narrative). See the allusion to Samson in Mt 1:21: just as the angel predicts Samson would save Israel from the Philistines, so according to the angel would Jesus save his people from sin.

More facts: in Mt Nazareth is mentioned once, not part of the Matthean developments, but inserted into Marcan material. In Luke, Nazareth occurs only in the birth narrative, leaving Nazara in 4:16. Mark features Nazareth once 1:9 unsupported by the other synoptics.

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John2
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by John2 » Fri Aug 31, 2018 5:55 pm

That all sounds great, spin. My issue is that Matthew says Jesus being "called a Nazarene" is spoken of somewhere in "the prophets," and Nazareth is not mentioned in the OT. But nezter is (and its synonym tsemach), and in the context of the Messiah. As Basser writes in The Gospel of Matthew and Judaic Traditions: A Relevance-based Commentary:
In this [example from midrashic] tradition "He is called Netzer" is offered as a designation of the Messiah based on an interpretation of Isa 11:1. Now we have just seen above that a fulfillment text need not be from Scriptures to be cited as a fulfillment proof-text. It is enough that the fulfillment text be an interpretation of a text from Scripture to be cited as Scripture in a fulfillment exegesis.

Matthew, or perhaps his source, writes, "And when he arrived he settled in a city called Nazareth, in order that what was spoken by the Prophets might be fulfilled, 'He will be called a Nazorean.' " This fits the conscious type of fulfillment discussed above in 1:23. What is cited as a verse is in reality an explanation of Isa 11:1, at least as the Rabbis, reading the verse from Isaiah literally, understood it. "The Messiah is [to be] called Netzer." This is no different than saying, "and everything that happened to me fulfilled the verse that says, 'all dreams materialize according to oral interpretations.' " As we have seen in the tradition from b. Ber. 55b above, this was how the rabbis interpreted Gen 41:13. Matthew's insertion of this text, while somewhat strange, is within the range of Jewish tradition and must have originated within circles that were adept at interpreting Hebrew Scriptures ... The explanation of the teaching based on a scripture is cited as if it were Scripture itself.

https://books.google.com/books?id=7DRzB ... er&f=false
Another issue I have is that commentators from Eusebius to Lichtenstein have connected netzer with Nazareth/Nazarene, with Lenski noting that Jerome "learned [it] from Jewish Christians":

https://books.google.com/books?id=nQ9rJ ... er&f=false

So by at least the late fourth/early fifth centuries CE Jewish Christians connected Mt. 2.23 with netzer.

And what do you make of Jesus being called Notzri in rabbinic writings? This term is commonly understood to mean Nazarene, as Wilson, for example, notes here:
... "Nazarenes" was likely used as a designation for Jewish Christians from a very early date. It was apparently retained in Hebrew conversation (and later in Hebrew literature) by the term Notzrim, designating "Christians" (literally "Nazarenes") and Notzri , "Christian" (literally "Nazarene"). In the Talmud, Jesus and Christians are called Notzrim. Furthermore, the Jews may have linked the word Notzrim with the "branch [Hebrew notzer] of violence" of Sir 40:15, which has "no tender twig," a figure for "lasting prosperity." In a similar way, Christians associated Notzrim with the messianic Branch (netzer) found in Isa. 11:1 (probably the text upon which Matt 2:23 is based).

https://books.google.com/books?id=RPyAG ... ri&f=false


And as I cited above:
In the surviving pre-censorship Talmud manuscripts, Yeshu is followed by the epithet Ha-Notzri in most occurrences. R. Travers Herford, Joseph Klausner and others translated it as "the Nazarene." The term does not appear consistently in the manuscripts and Menachem Meiri (1249 – c. 1310) in his commentary on the Talmud Beit HaBechirah regarded it as a late interpolation.

Klausner noted objections by other scholars on grammatical and phonetic grounds to the translation of Notzri as "Nazarene" meaning a person from Nazareth (Hebrew Natzrat), however the etymology of "Nazarene" is itself uncertain and one possibility is that it is derived from Notzri and did not mean a person from Nazareth.

In 1180 CE Maimonides in his Mishneh Torah, Hilchos Melachim 11:4 briefly discusses Jesus in a passage later censored by the Church. He uses the name Yeshua for Jesus (an attested equivalent of the name unlike Yeshu) and follows it with HaNotzri showing that regardless of what meaning had been intended in the Talmudic occurrences of this term, Maimonides understood it as an equivalent of Nazarene.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yeshu#Yeshu_Ha-Notzri

My thinking is that Matthew associated Nazareth with the Davidic netzer (and its synonym tsemach) in the same way he links the birth of Jesus with Bethlehem, where David was born, in keeping with what he calls Jesus in Mt. 1:1, "Jesus Christ, the son of David."

While I like the idea that Jesus may have been a lifelong Nazirite, I'm having trouble squaring that with Mk. 14:25, which Ulan pointed out above, in which Jesus says, " I will not drink again from the fruit of the vine until that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God."

Also, what do you make of the Caesarea inscription? The Wikipedia page for Nazareth notes that Nazareth is spelled with a tsade there (and it is spelled with a tsade in modern Hebrew):
The first non-Christian reference to Nazareth is an inscription on a marble fragment from a synagogue found in Caesarea Maritima in 1962. This fragment gives the town's name in Hebrew as נצרת (n-ṣ-r-t). The inscription dates to c. AD 300 and chronicles the assignment of priests that took place at some time after the Bar Kokhba revolt, AD 132-35.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nazareth
Why else would Jewish commentators from late fourth/early fifth century CE Jewish Christians (if not earlier) to Klausner connect netzer and Notzri with Nazareth/Nazarene if not because of a similarity in spelling?
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Re: Matthew 2:23 (on a bus to Riga... love the WiFi)

Post by spin » Fri Aug 31, 2018 8:07 pm

1. The prophets: there are two types of prophets, the named prophets and what we refer to as the "former" prophets (Joshua to Kings), which includes among others Judges. No prophet can be named as a source, hence Mt's "the prophets".

2. "called a nazarene": this is paraphrastic for "will be a nazarene" and we know from the doublet in Mk 1:24, which gives two LXX versions (nazarene [of God]/holy one of God) of a fragment of Jdg 13:5 that nazarene is derived from NAZIR. From Jdg 13:5, "the child shall be a (Codex A: nazirite/Codex B: holy one) of God from the womb". This allows Mark's nazarene to be understood as "holy one".

3. none of the netzer stuff is anything more than flailing about trying to get a handle on the topic. Heed the problem of the tsade. It tells you you have to find a solution to why every single naz- term has a zeta, not just wave the crux away.

4. see my earlier post about naziritism. The vow is irrelevant to the issue. Did Samson stop being nazirite through carousing? (I don't see how Mk 14:25 forces any Nazirite conclusions. The text indicates he's prescient of his imminent death, so if it were a vow, he'd know it'd be for less than 24 hours.)

5. none of the Jewish Notsri/Notsrim references date before 3rd C., so are too late to be relevant, best explained through interactions with, reactions to, Christians.

6. The toponym NATSRAT refers to a real place. Nazareth does not. The gospel evidence suggests that Nazareth is at the end of the evolutionary process from nazarene to Nazara to the loss of nazarene in Mt to the use of nazorean to Nazareth. It is simplest explained as finding the nearest real-world equivalent to Nazara (by appearance, an Aramaic name-form) which was Nazareth. This requires only one dealing with the tsade, to ignore it when the real toponym (NATSRAT) had its final impact on the tradition, because the tradition already had the zeta from NAZIR (and the developments on it: nazarene, etc). The alternative implicit in the common suggestions is that the tsade was transliterated as zeta on at least four separate occasions, never as sigma, a suggestion that is quite farcical on the transliteration evidence.
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John2
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by John2 » Sat Sep 01, 2018 2:57 pm

Well now I'm being swayed back to the Nazirite idea, spin. You've more or less outlined the points in my citation from the messianic apologetics website on page one above, but the way you put it makes me inclined to disregard the netzer angle, unlike the website, which at least considers it a possibility in addition to the nazir idea. But even then the writer favors the latter, concluding the article with:
Matthew, more than anything else, relies on his audience’s knowledge of knowing that the terms nazir, naziraion, and “holy one” are all connected with Yeshua being a “Nazarene.” The major point that Matthew is emphasizing is that Yeshua has been separated out as the Father’s appointed servant and is the ideal of holiness. Hegg validly states, “Yeshua, in all of His life lived out the quintessential meaning of the Nazirite vow, for He was the Holy One of God in every way.” One need not go very far to understand this connection and how it makes Yeshua a “Nazarene.”
Okay, okay, nazir. I can be satisfied that Jesus did not drink wine (though with some reservation still over Mk. 14:25's "again") or touch dead people (I don't think Jairus' daughter was dead in any event) in Mark. However, I've gathered that Matthew does say that Jairus' daughter was dead. Jairus at least says she is dead, unlike in Mark 5:35, where it is said instead by "some people."

Mt. 9:18:
While he was saying this, a synagogue leader came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.”


Mk. 5:35:
While Jesus was still speaking, some people came from the house of Jairus, the synagogue leader. “Your daughter is dead,” they said. “Why bother the teacher anymore?”


And on page 65 of a book I linked to above Aichele writes:
In Matthew 9:18 and Luke 8:53, the girl is described as dead. Commentators on Mark often assume that the girl is indeed dead, although Mark does not say this -in fact, Jesus asserts the contrary (Mark 5:39, par. Matthew 9:24, Luke 8:52).
As I look at Mt. 9:18-26 I'm not sure she is dead here either. Here is the passage for me to examine closer.
18While he was saying this, a synagogue leader came and knelt before him and said, “My daughter has just died. But come and put your hand on her, and she will live.” 19Jesus got up and went with him, and so did his disciples ...

23When Jesus entered the synagogue leader’s house and saw the noisy crowd and people playing pipes, 24he said, “Go away. The girl is not dead but asleep.” But they laughed at him. 25After the crowd had been put outside, he went in and took the girl by the hand, and she got up. 26News of this spread through all that region.
Jesus says the same thing here as in Mark 5: "The girl is not dead but asleep." The only major difference seems to be that Jairus says she is dead instead of "some people." If she is dead in Mark or Matthew, why would they present Jesus as being a liar? In both cases Jesus says, "The girl is not dead but asleep." Are there any other examples of Jesus lying like this in the NT? And if she is dead in Matthew, how would it affect the idea of Jesus being a Nazirite?
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by John2 » Sat Sep 01, 2018 3:41 pm

Oh, I overlooked Mk. 5:22-24:
22Then one of the synagogue leaders, named Jairus, came, and when he saw Jesus, he fell at his feet. 23He pleaded earnestly with him, “My little daughter is dying. Please come and put your hands on her so that she will be healed and live.” 24So Jesus went with him.
Here though Jairus says his daughter is "dying," not that she has died as he does in Mt. 9:18. I suppose one could argue that Jairus only thinks she is dead in Matthew (like I think he only thinks she is "dying" in Mk. 5:23). In both cases though, I have a hard time picturing either gospel writer being comfortable with presenting Jesus as lying when he says, "The girl is not dead but asleep."
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Re: Matthew 2:23

Post by spin » Sat Sep 01, 2018 4:15 pm

How many people did Samson slay? Did he stop being a Nazirite from birth? Did Jesus lose the ability to "save his people from sin" by raising the dead? As I have pointed out, this is not a Nazirite vow: there is no vow to be completed. Acts of abstinence regard a vow, reaching a state of grace Jesus was born in.
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