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Thread: Martin Luther King's Religious Beliefs

  1. Top | #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by lpetrich View Post
    Defining certain people as non-enemies so that they can be attacked. That's legalistic hairsplitting and not much more than conceptual gerrymandering.
    Well I am simply explaining what a 1st century Jewish person would have in mind when the terms “neighbor”, “enemy” and “brother” would be mentioned.

    Enemy would have been the Roman context, so would have a samaritan which were actually related to the Hebrew people.

    Christ would not thought of religious leaders as enemies, which is understood when he was before the High Priest...case in point.

    If you attempt to study the text you have to put yourselves in the 1st century mindset and yes even split a few hairs....

    Conceptual Gerrymandering

  2. Top | #12
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    You have to understand what the black Christianity meant to blacks. It was a refuge and it still is. It was a focal point for activism and political action.

    Tradition wise he was a southern Baptist. There are forms and rituals to it. Baptists general use whole body immersion for baptism, preferably a lake, pond, or river.

    I am friends with a black who grew up in La in the 30s-40s as a baptist and is a member of Seattle's Mount Zion Baptist church. He met MLK. Mt Zion is still a focal point for activism.

    I read a book of his sermons called A Knock At Midnight. He may have been pragmatic about religion, but I d not doubt he was a believer.

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by yyr123 View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by lpetrich View Post
    Defining certain people as non-enemies so that they can be attacked. That's legalistic hairsplitting and not much more than conceptual gerrymandering.
    Well I am simply explaining what a 1st century Jewish person would have in mind when the terms “neighbor”, “enemy” and “brother” would be mentioned. ...
    Did you go back in a time machine and find out? Why is it necessary to have a lot of background that is not in the Bible itself? It's advertised as the perfect instruction book, yet it is hopelessly defective, with its total lack of explanation of what presumably needs to be explained.

  4. Top | #14
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    In the 1st century Christianity evolved out of a Jewish heretical sect.

    They cooped the bible and expanded the principles to all. Paul got rid of Jewish requirements for being Christian.

    I expect to the old Hebrews friend and neighbor did not general mean outsiders. The OT is essential Hebrews vs the world.

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    Veteran Member seyorni's Avatar
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    I always thought of MLK as a disciple of Gandhi. He took his non-violent resistance directly from Gandhi's Satyagraha. His followers even wore the "Gandhi caps" favored by the Indian Congress Party.

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    Quote Originally Posted by steve_bank View Post
    I expect to the old Hebrews friend and neighbor did not general mean outsiders. The OT is essential Hebrews vs the world.
    Yep, I agree

    It’s always good to use the word to interpret the word

    The answers are there if we really ask the right questions the right way

  7. Top | #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by seyorni View Post
    I always thought of MLK as a disciple of Gandhi. He took his non-violent resistance directly from Gandhi's Satyagraha. His followers even wore the "Gandhi caps" favored by the Indian Congress Party.
    He did study Gandhi. His non violent approach to civil rights did not have universal support among black activists.

    I wt ached a film clip of a march. MLK was at the front. People were spitting, throwing things, and shouting insults. A young black man lost it and started to break towards the hecklers. Without breaking stride MLK grabbed him firmly by the shoulders and pulled him back in line.

    I never forgot the image. There were were times when I thought if MLK could maintain himself under all that I could certainly deal with much more trivial problems.

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    Administrator lpetrich's Avatar
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    Susan Jacoby's "Freethinkers: A History of American Secularism":
    The extensive participation in the movement of nonreligious civil rights advocates and civil libertarians was a delicate issue for those who wished the cause of racial justice to be seen not as a radical departure from but as the embodiment of American tradition at its best. Like the image-conscious suffragists at the turn of the century, civil rights leaders had good reason not to draw attention to the importance of the nonreligious, and even the unconventionally religious, in their movement. King’s personal association with Jews, who were regarded by most segregationists as indistinguishable from atheists, gave white racists another reason to hate him. As was well known in the sixties, King’s closest white friend and personal lawyer was Stanley Levison, a nonobservant, nonbelieving Jew who was a veteran of the “Old Left” of the thirties and a defense lawyer for communists, socialists, and labor unions throughout the McCarthy era. King and Levison were such good friends that they reportedly spoke on the telephone nearly every night—and one of the topics they discussed was religion. Deeply rooted in his Baptist faith, King found it impossible to imagine that someone could be as morally committed to the betterment of humanity as Levison without believing in any god or any religion. “You believe in God, Stan,” King would tease his friend. “You just don’t know it.”
    This from someone who wrote in his seminary years "What Experiences of Christians Living in the Early Christian Century Led to the Christian Doctrines of the Divine Sonship of Jesus, the Virgin Birth, and the Bodily Resurrection".

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