Repere prin Cartea Daniel cu Valer Brancovan Partea II


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Vezi Partea I-a aici:

  1. Repere prin Cartea Daniel cu Valer Brancovan Partea I Discutie despre escatologie, curentele de teologie a zilelor noastre, o introducere a cartii Daniel si studiu (informal) din capitolele 1-5. Va urma ultima parte, partea 3-a maine.

Notite din introducerea din Partea II-a, Pastorul Valer Brancovan:

Va rog sa mergeti la sursele astea paralele si sa vedeti si pe Hagai si pe Ezra, care pentru discutia noastra sunt relevante. Deasemeni Neemia cu zidirea zidurilor a Ierusalimului, care e aproape 90 de ani mai tarziu deat edictul pentru restaurarea templului. Mai intai a fost Zorobabel si Iosua, dupa aceea a venit Ezra. Ezra a venit cu 13 ani inaintea lui Neemia. Informatie despre templu este compilata de Ezra si pusa in cartea lui Ezra.  Toata perioada dupa templu e acoperita de ce a facut Ezra.

De ce am mentionat treaba aceasta? Pentru ca intr-o parte vedem impactul care l-a avut profetii Hagai si Zaharia la construirea templului. Hagai 2 – zidirea inspirata de Petru Licius Dumnezeu a prevazut-o. Au intarziat cu ea pentru ca Dumnezeu a vrut ca ei sa finalizeze proiectul asta.  De aceea scrie in versetul 3 „,Cine a mai rămas între voi din ceice au văzut Casa aceasta în slava ei dintîi? Şi cum o vedeţi acum? Aşa cum este, nu pare ea ca o nimica în ochii voştri?” Suntem la nivelul anului 537, anul 2 al lui Darius. Din anul 586 pana in anul 536 au trecut 50 de ani.

Mai exista profetii din astea escatologice, pur si simplu coplesitoare prin Evrei, unde zice: Inca putina vreme si voi clatina inca odata cerurile si pamntul, marea si uscatul. Evrei 12 „,Voi mai clătina încăodată nu numai pămîntul, ci şi cerul„. Acum noi stim ca nu este vorba de templul lui Zorobabel. Deschide o perspectiva profetica pentru ultima casa care va fi. Si care casa, nu ar trebui sa o confundam cu templul lui Irod sau vreun alt templu pus pe undeva prin teorii primileni, ci ar trebui s ane gandim ca aceasta este casa spirituala a carei slava va fi cea mai mare dintre toate  si practic reprezinta implinirea completa a ideii cu casa lui Dumnezeu cu oameni.

Dar vedeti cum merge profetia. Asta este o mostra sa vedeti cum telescopeaza de la amanunte si detalii. Uneori perspectiva imediata se confunda cu perspectiva viitoare.  Practic, cand vede ceva in viitor, dar aicea porneste de la evenimente care simbolic le interpreteaza pentru ca sa anunte niste miscari viitoare. Si cumva, cele doua perspective se suprapun si din cauza asta este foarte greu de distins elementele. De exemplu, acelasi lucru este si in discursul Domnului din Matei, Marcu si din Luca unde cele doua perspective sunt foarte interpatrunse, dar acum dupa ce am vazut istoria din anul 70 AD., ne dam foarte bine seama care au fost pana /pentru anul 70 si care au fost dupa aceea.(min. 11:00)

Seminar 2 – Cartea Daniel cu Pastor Valer Brancovan from Metanoia Timisoara on Vimeo.

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Carl Trueman Lecture at SBTS (3) Martin Luther – The Tools of the Trade


Dr. Carl Trueman: In the first lecture I wanted to make the argument that theology and the practice of ministry are intimately connected. Luther is a great example of this. You see that Luther’s theology really drives his understanding of the shape of pastoral ministry. And I wanted to challenge you to move beyond the merely historical point I’m making there, to reflect longer on how you perceive ministry and how your perception actually reflects something about your theological convictions and to urge you to allow your theological convictions to drive how you think about ministry.

The second lecture I talked about Luther’s understanding of the word of God, how God is fundamentally to us, a God who speaks. And God’s speech essential constitutes reality. And I applied that to the nature of preaching. I think one of Luther’s great insights is the connection he makes between the speech of God and the speech of the preacher. And I hope that those of you who are preachers, or are going to be preachers will be excited by that idea that when the preacher speaks God’s word is powerful.

The final lecture- The Tools of the Trade- I wanna make the point that ordinary people mattered to the shape of Luther’s reformation. These are the people that are not typically featured in the textbooks other than as statistics, because, by and large they were too busy working to put bread on the table than to write books about how they’re feeling. But, yet, Luther’s connection with these people profoundly shaped how he executed his task as pastor.

So, in the third lecture I want to examine the practicality of Luther’s own pastoral ministry. As with all pastors, Luther is of course a flawed human being. And the details of his actual practice do not entirely square with his theology. One obvious example would be his increasingly bitter preoccupation with the Jews, which one finds from the 1530’s onwards. Frustrated by their failure to convert to Christianity, Luther adopted, and, indeed sharpened many of the standard –- of the anti Jewish polemic, which was so common in late medieval Europe. Indeed, his very last sermon, preached in 1546 ended with a bitter harangue against the jews. Thus, I accept at the outset that if you dig deep into Luther’s life, you will find inconsistencies and hypocrisies, here and there. My point here is not to argue for the total consistency of Luther, but rather a general conformity of his practice to his theological commitments.

The reform of worship

The first point to make as we now approach Luther’s pastoral practice, is that the way in which he reformed worship was intimately connected to his care and concern for ordinary people. Many of us are familiar with his treatise on prayer, which was originally a letter to his hairdresser Peter, who had told him while cutting his hair that he struggled with his prayer life. Reflect on that for awhile. Luther had time to write a handbook on prayer for the man who cut his hair.

Martin Luther, author of the text of Christ la...

Martin Luther, author of the text of Christ lag in Todes Banden, and who, with Johann Walter, also wrote the melody (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Even the briefest glance at Luther’s volume of letters reveal a man who was equally comfortable writing to powerful princes and to much lesser individuals with words of encouragement, counsel and occasional letters of rebuke. Yet, Luther’s care for people has significance, not simply for his personal relations, but also for the pace and shape of the Lutheran reformation. Basic to the reformation was the education of the people in the patterns of thought and behavior reformers required by their new theology. This issue raised all manner of pedagogical questions, which in turn raised questions about what we might call now broadly – aesthetics. What was church meant to look like? What was church meant to sound like? What was family piety and individual devotions meant to look like and sound like?

In the early years of the reformation, leadership at Wittenberg was shared by Martin Luther and his academic colleague, one time friend and later nemesis, a man called Andreas Bodenstein, (named Karlstadt after his birthplace). In the years after 1517, these 2 men came to represent 2 different visions of reform and Wittenberg would ultimately prove that it was only big enough to allow only one man to succeed.

Things came to a head in 1522. After the Diet of Worms, Luther was kidnapped by his prince, Frederick the Wise’s men and kept for his own safety in the Wartburg castle, high on the hills of Eisenach where he began his work of producing a German reformation Bible, by translating the New Testament.

As Luther is in the Wartburg castle, the leadership passes to Karlstadt. Luther’s young assistant Philip Melanchthon and  his colleague Conrad Zwilling pushed very hard for radical reformation, which has all of the hallmarks of social revolution. Iconoclasm, violent rhetoric at rapid pace. Luther, later in 1521 travels to Wittenberg incognito to see the chaos first hand. And then in 1522 he’s brought back by Frederick the Wise because the riots are getting out of hand and if the reformation descends into total chaos, Frederick will have to act to crush it because the emperor Charles V will move against Saxony. Luther comes back and I think this is the point in his career where he is actually in most danger because if he can’t quell the riots in Wittenberg, and all he can use to do that is his own force of personality, he will be replaced by Frederick the Wise.

Luther comes back, quells the social revolution in Wittenberg and introduces  a much more conservative vision of reformation. There will be no iconoclasm. If you go to a Lutheran church today, you will find crucifixes. The conservative however of Luther’s intervention in 1522 was not simply a piece of political pragmatism. I think it was also connected to his pastoral sensitivity. Luther knew that lasting change could only be brought about by gentle persuasion. Most people then, as ever since did not like change. And so, Luther demonstrated in 1522 and throughout his subsequent career an aesthetic conservatism, which was designed as much to prevent the disturbance of tender consciences as it was to appease the desire of his political masters.

We tend to romanticize the reformation and we think that everybody is desperate for the reformation to come to town. We see evidence of this in Luther’s liturgical innovations. From as early as 1520, it is clear that Lutheran theology demands vernacular liturgy. How could the mass, for example, be any use if the words of promise are not clearly articulated in a language which the people could understand? Yet, for a man who stands out in history as a volcanic revolutionary, Luther’s move towards liturgical reform are gradual and hesitant. This is how he describes his approach in a pamphlet in 1523(6 yrs. after the crisis of 1517): Until now, I have only used books and sermons to wean the charts of the people from their Godless regard for the ceremonial. For I believed it would be a christian and helpful thing, if I could prompt a peaceful removal of the abomination that Satan sets up in the holy place, through the man of sin. Therefore I’ve used neither authority or pressure, nor did I make any innovations for I have been hesitant and fearful, partly because of the weak in faith who cannot suddenly exchange an accustomed order of worship for a new and unusual one and also because of the fickle  and fastidious spirits who rush in like unclean swine without faith or reason and who delight only in novelty and tires of it as quickly when it is worn off. Such people are a nuisance, even in other affairs. But, in spiritual matters they are absolutely unbearable. Nonetheless, at the risk of bursting with anger, I must bear with them, unless I want to let the Gospel itself be denied to the people.

Here, Luther made it clear that he was concerned to handle the delicate consciences with care and also to give no ground to those who seek novelty or innovation for its own sake. The liturgy he then described in 1523 was itself very conservative. Essentially, a cleaned up version of the traditional mass. Still in Latin, except for the sermon and a few hymns. And later, Luther can hardly be described as being in the vanguard of the application of his own theological principles to liturgical reform.

Indeed, even in 1524, as he wrote against the radicals, Luther rejoiced that the mass was now said in German, but also argued that such a practice should not be made compulsory lest it become a new legalism. And also because he was not yet satisfied that the German liturgy captured the full beauty of what was going on. It was not until October 1525 that a full German mass was celebrated in Wittenberg.  That’s as early as Luther feels able to push forward with the full application of theology that he’s fully articulating in 1517-1518. It’s remarkable sensitivity. (17 min mark)

The Tools of the Trade from Southern Seminary on Vimeo.

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