richard rives book ‘too long in the sun’ in a nutshell

Feb 2014

Earlier this month I finally completed reading richard rives book “Too long in the sun” here is a brief description of it’s theme and why it is incorrect.

rives portrays modern Christianity as pagan using snippets of history, Church history and lots of eisegesis to prove his hypothesis that he is right and the rest of us are wrong. In his book he lays down the ground work seemingly taken from other authors like acharya s, various atheists and other authors to make his point.

Allow me to review in brief what he is trying to warn fellow Christians about.

1 “sun worship” was once part of the following civilizations.

a “Chaldeans”

b “Assyrians”

c “Babylonians”

d “Medo-Persia”

e “Greco Roman gods”

And despite the fact that each civilizations religions had gods & goddesses and various pagan ritual rives insists that their ways were eventually incorporated into modern Christianity.

At a later date I will review the evidence rives has in his books and post my findings as a attempt to refute his supposed ‘study’.

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2 roman mithraism:

The subject of roman mithraism has been used as a regular attack by various religious groups in order to provide false ‘evidence’ of pagan doctrines & symbols that ancient Christians somehow borrowed. Such un-necessary attacks only make the offending religion or philosophy look idiotic and ignorant of what roman mithraism really was.

It was a ‘mystery’ religion with no known text. It’s followers were held in strict secrecy of its teachings, rituals, doctrines and so forth. It was a religion of male Roman soldiers there were no female or children followers. As far as we know nothing in mithraism was ‘borrowed’ by Gentile Christians when it was an operation religion…

(PLEASE NOTE: I have already answered rives on this subject. Please review my blog for my posts on roman Mithraism)

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3 Iniquity translation:

Page 74 He translates “Iniquity” as “Transgression of the law” (AKA) The law of Moses. However according to Matthew 7:21-23. However most Bible resource websites translate it as 2 words.

“Adikema”

“a misdeed, evil doing, iniquity”

“Lexicons – New Testament Greek Lexicon – New Testament Greek Lexicon – King James Version – Adikema”

“Anomia”

“the condition of without law because ignorant of it because of violating it contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness”

“Lexicons – New Testament Greek Lexicon – New Testament Greek Lexicon – New American Standard – Anomia”

http://www.biblestudytools.com/search/?q=iniquity&s=References&rc=LEX&rc2=LEX GRK&p=2

Depending on which website you refer to the Greek word can be translated like:

“ἀνομία,n  \{an-om-ee’-ah}”

“1) the condition of without law  1a) because ignorant of it  1b) because of violating it  2) contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness”

http://www.greekbible.com/l.php?a)nomi/a_n—–asf-_p

While study Bibles translate it as Adikema

If rives ideas were correct than an actual translation of ‘iniquity’ would be breaking the Law of Moses instead it appears that either word can be translated as breaking (ANY) Law.

Other Christians also translate iniquity in the same way.

“Is Sin Transgression of the Law?”

“Posted on May 9, 2011”

http://lenjoson.com/is-sin-transgression-of-the-law/

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3 Pagan festivals: Christmas, Easter, Images:

After significant study about the issue of paganism in Christmas, Easter. I have concluded that there WERE pagan aspects in both celebrations. However I have noted that both celebrations are not celebrated for paganism. Otherwise we Christians might as well go be wiccans or some type of sycretist occultism. Our beloved God is BIGGER than any pagan god / goddess or power. Those who foolishly believe that paganism has power over God through fear mongering are idiots.

As I read my Bible I recognize that there are NO specific COMMANDMENTS to keep Jewish holidays. And so it would seem to me that it is the decision of the believer to celebrate such activities or not.

As for images, symbols. Most of us in Christianity donot worship a image or symbol. Images and symbols in my opinion are used as identifiers between believers and hold other possibilities for story telling and communicating the Gospel to those who don’t speak out native languages.

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4 Sabbath and the Ten Commandments

Rives is absolutely sure that Christians are part of Israel. Pages 88, 106-107 rives belief is that “TRUE” Christians keep the Ten Commandments along with Faith in Jesus Christ. His go to Scriptural text is Revelation 14:12 (Pages 249).

His philosophy is borrowed seemingly from seventh day adventists, hebrew roots and many other organized groups or sects. Rives is not alone in his accusations several other people are making similar claims and it is only a matter of time till we find out whom they all serve.

When they deny Gentiles the right to exist without attempting to live according a specific section of the Law of Moses without keeping the whole law I fear for their souls sake.

Here is where he is wrong.

Rives accuses modern Christians of not adhering to the old Law of Moses. And he uses ALOT of Scriptures with his own eisḗgesis. This of course causes several problems in his philosophy.

#1 The Law of Moses is not JUST the Ten Commandments. But 613 Commandments that Moses gave the WHOLE OF ISRAEL. See Exodus 20:1-17 to Exodus 40:1-38. And Leviticus 1:1-17 to Leviticus 27:1-34. To break Gods Law meant death.

#2 Gods Law is a Theocratic System fore only one group of people. Israel. See Exodus 20:1-26 to Leviticus 27:1-34.

#3 Jesus as God has / had the right to change whatever he wished about the ‘Law’. His answers to a Pharisee ‘lawyer’ about the greatest Commandment in Law of Moses from Matthew 22:34-40 is proof at least for me that as God Jesus has the answers while men only have philosophy.

#4 The Disciples or Apostles taught a new and distinctive doctrine from the Law of Moses. That Jesus as God canceled the Law in order to bring Gentiles into a new religion. A religion eventually called Christianity that is based from Faith in Jesus and following his Teachings or Commandments. Examples: Acts 15:1-31, Romans 8:1-14, Romans 13:8-10, Galatians 2:15-16, Galatians 3:1-29

While rives may have heard all my arguments countering his accusations and eisḗgesis I am not the only Christian that has sought after the answers to what rives, youngblood and many other wannabe hebrew roots clowns have poisoned the internet with false accusations and desires to see all of Christendom under the Law of Moses.

See here:

“Question What is the Hebrew Roots movement?”

http://www.gotquestions.org/Hebrew-roots.html

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“The Haters GotQuestions vs. the Hebrew Roots Movement”

http://www.blogos.org/gotquestions/hebrew-roots-movement.html

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“Question: “Who were the Judaizers?”

http://www.gotquestions.org/Judaizers.html

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“Question: “Do Christians have to obey the Old Testament law?”

http://www.gotquestions.org/Christian-law.html

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“Are Christians expected to obey the Old Testament law?”

http://www.compellingtruth.org/Christian-OT-Law.html

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“Are Israel and the church the same thing? Does God still have a plan for Israel?”

http://www.gotquestions.org/Israel-church.html

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As you have already noticed I have included information about hebrew roots, judaizers and questions about the Law of Moses as counter information authored by various Christian apologetic websites. As part of my investigation of rives claims I have forwarded rives website information to each website and others who I have not included in this post their response to my queries / questions are easily read in this post.

“What other Christian apologetic authors have to say about richard rives”

https://acriticalchristian1971.wordpress.com/what-other-christian-apologetic-authors-have-to-say-about-richard-rives/

While this post may not cover every issue rives attempts to bring up in his book I think this is a good start at countering his judaizing and attempts at wrongfully pushing fellow Christians back into First Century Christianity that rives calls ‘nazoreans’.

To conclude this post.

In order to provide specific answers to Questions fellow Christians ask about rives and his doctrines I decided to buy his books in order to gain understanding about his philosophy and doctrines. My intent IS NOT TO SUPPORT rives teachings but to counter the videos and other products he willing sells on his website. While my answers are brief in this post it is my later intent on focusing a larger more informational response to rives products that hopefully will shed more light on what he is actually doing in attacking Christian culture and to a larger extent fellow Christians who are not giving in to a specific philosophy that rives believes is true. Periodically check back on my blog and see how I answer rives products at a later date.

~Will

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