There are many disagreements about the reality which Jesus and others may have intended, when they used certain words or phrases, because there are such things as symbolism and allegory for example.

Specifically, when we look at the sayings of Jesus, we are met with parables and stories which are open to discussion as to whether they are literal or not literal, perhaps figurative or whatever.

Perhaps some reality may be revealed if we observe that He sometimes further added to what He had said, and clarified it by using the word “plainly”. In other words, He was saying that He was about to speak without using any of these literary devices, and that His words could be taken “verbatim” or LITERALLY.  IE in the plainest possible meaning, understanding, and at face value.

The first one that comes to mind is when Lazarus died. John 11-14. He said that Lazarus “slept”. But then He told them PLAINLY, “Lazarus is dead“. “But I go to wake him”. This is a picture of the resurrection, other than it is a temporary one. But it points out the reality of what the word “sleep” means. It means death. Therefore Christians who “sleep” are DEAD. [it could be argued that this is preresurrection, but there will always be argument] The plainness of speech still stands.

JOHN 16-28  Jesus speaking says “I came forth from the Father, and have come into the world; I am leaving the world again, and going to the Father”. 29 His disciples said, “Lo, now you are speaking PLAINLY, and are not using a figure of speech.  “ this we believe that you came from God”.

Other examples are John 10-24. If thou be the Christ, tell us PLAINLY. 25. Jesus answered them. “I told you, and you do not believe…”

John 11-25 “These things I have spoken to you in figurative language; an hour is coming when I will speak no more to you in figurative language, but will tell you plainly of the Father.”  The language He felt He was compelled to use while on earth was not the language He would be using once resurrected..



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