HOW NOT TO REHABILITATE YOUR BATTERED CREDIBILITY
Franz Luigi Lugena Responds to Gerry Soliman on Eliphaz the Temanite
Bro. Franz Luigi Lugena debunks Gerry Soliman
Mr. Gerry Soliman a.k.a Rodimus of the thebereans.net, in his effort to extricate himself from the pit of shame as a result of his exchanges with Bro. Marwil Llasos, [wherein he was exposed deliberately misinterpreting the statements of Fr. Abe Arganiosa, CRS and Bro. Marwil to force the notion of the existence of contradiction between the two when in fact they are actually talking about different things] tried to shift the attention of his readers by jumping to another topic [he abandoned the issue regarding the Blessed Virgin Mary], this time on the question as to whether Eliphaz is unrighteous or not.
Rodimus is really desperate to get even, going as far as resorting to underhanded tricks to avenge his already damaged reputation incurred from previous skirmishes with catholic apologists. The guy used again his worn out “divide and conquer” tactics by pitting my statements on the subject against Bro. Mars’, willfully disregarding the contexts of our respective statements. Bro. Mars countered that there is no contradiction since he and I were talking about two different moments in Eliphaz’s life: He (Bro. Mars) on the unrighteous Eliphaz questioning the practice of calling on saints (Job 5:1), and I on the already forgiven Eliphaz courtesy of the prayer of Job, who is also a saint. (Job 42:8-10) In his latest blog entry, Mr. Soliman (Rodimus) countered that I “betrayed” Bro. Mars’ position:
From the above, Atty. Llasos asserts that he and Mr. Lugena were talking about two different chapters in the life of Eliphaz. Atty. Llasos was pertaining to the life of Eliphaz where he was still unrighteous while Mr. Lugena was pertaining to a forgiven Eliphaz. Unfortunately, Atty. Llasos is betrayed by this argument of Kapatas:
Nagkamali si Eliphaz yes, pero hindi ibig sabihin eh talagang masama syang tao. Si Haring David ay nagkasala ng pangangalunya pero hindi talaga sya masamang tao. Kaya wag husgahan ang tao sa isang nagawang kamalian. Para namang ang babanal nyo.
[Eliphaz was wrong, yes, but that doesn't mean that he is really an evil person. King David sinned by committing adultery but he is really not an evil person. So don't judge a person who made a mistake, as if you're holy.]
Mr. Lugena gave a similar instance in the person of King David. To begin with, David found favor with God and made him king. But David committed adultery. David repented and he was forgiven. If Mr. Lugena related the person of David to the person of Eliphaz, it only means that for Mr. Lugena Eliphaz was a good man who committed sin.
It seems like Rodimus is implying that for me, Eliphaz was still a good man even though he committed transgression against God. I think this is a case of a depraved imagination working overtime. Let me set things straight: My statement: “Nagkamali si Eliphaz yes, pero hindi ibig sabihin eh talagang masama syang tao,” refers to the reality that Eliphaz, though sinning against God was later forgiven. Taking this into account, you cannot say that Eliphaz is really an evil person. But this doesn’t mean that “Eliphaz remains righteous after sinning” either. The fact that he was forgiven by God shows that Eliphaz had sinned previously and therefore unrighteous. But he didn’t remain in that state because he was forgiven later as the scripture shows.
Catholic apologists Bro. Franz Luigi Lugena and Bro. Mars Llasos
Rodimus also pointed out that ME, agreeing with Bro. Mars that Eliphaz is unrighteous in Job 5:1 will prove inconsistent with my position in Job 22:15, because it will only mean that Eliphaz’s statements in Job 22:15 is also wrong.
So if Mr. Lugena were to agree with the explanation of Atty. Llasos (that Eliphaz was previously unrighteous in Job 5:1) it would not help the case of Mr. Lugena since now it can be interpreted that Eliphaz was wrong in Job 22:15. Furthermore, Mr. Lugena already stated that Eliphaz was not really an evil person.
This is a proof that Mr. Soliman (Rodimus) didn’t read his bible well. Eliphaz is unrighteous precisely because Eliphaz had not said right things about God.
Job 42:7 After the LORD had spoken these words to Job, the LORD said to Eli'phaz the Te'manite: "My wrath is kindled against you and against your two friends; for you have not spoken of me what is right, as my servant Job has.
So those things that Eliphaz said about God that are wrong. With regards to other statements of Eliphaz including the “Ang Dating Daan na nilakaran ng mga masamang tao” in Job 22:15, the Bible doesn’t make an affirmation that they are also wrong. To conclude as such is really unusual for a sola scriptura believer like Mr. Soliman (Rodimus). That is clearly “going beyond what was written.” So Mr. Soliman, in his effort to discredit the Catholic Church, is willing to abandon his sola scriptura credo. That is very revealing.
"Now does it mean that Eliphaz’s statements in Job 5:1 is correct as well? [since said verse is not about God but rather about his criticism on the practice of calling on saints] Of course not. Contrary to Eliphaz's statements in Job 5:1, the scripture demonstrated that it is not wrong to call on saints and ask for their prayers because their prayers do help other people spiritually speaking."
Job 1:5 After each feast, Job would send for his children and perform a ceremony, as a way of asking God to forgive them of any wrongs they may have done. He would get up early the next morning and offer a sacrifice for each of them, just in case they had sinned or silently cursed God.
Job 42:8-10 So I want you to go over to Job and offer seven bulls and seven goats on an altar as a sacrifice to please me. After this, Job will pray, and I will agree not to punish you for your foolishness. Eliphaz, Bildad, and Zophar obeyed the LORD, and he answered Job's prayer.
After Job had prayed for his three friends, the LORD made Job twice as rich as he had been before.
Clearly, Eliphaz' statements in Job 5:1 is wrong. He himself was forgiven precisely because of the prayers of Job, who is himself a saint. The question as to the correctness of Eliphaz’s statements in Job 22:15 is another matter. Job 22:15 is not about God but rather about “ang dating daan” and therefore not included in the wrong things that Eliphaz had said in his conversation with Job. For it to be wrong, Rodimus must first show us verses stating as such. For Rodimus to conclude that Job 22:15 is wrong without biblical verses will be suicide on his part, him being a sola scriptura believer.
As regards to Mr. Soliman’s question: Was Eliphaz really unrighteous when he was talking to Job? My answer is this: Eliphaz was unrighteous when he failed to say right things about God in his conversation with Job. This is verified by God himself in Job 42:7. But Eliphaz didn’t remain in unrighteous state for he was forgiven later. Taking this into account, Eliphaz is not really an evil man.
Now, I want to return the favor and ask Mr. Soliman the following questions: (1) After failing to say right things about God, was Eliphaz righteous or not? (2) Is the statement of Eliphaz in Job 22:15 right or wrong?
I expect Mr. Soliman to answer these questions. Let’s see his stand on the issue.
Franz Luigi Lugena, Fr. Abraham P. Arganiosa, CRS and Marwil N. Llasos, OP
in The Splendor of the Church