I like to think in a somewhat mathematical way, and thusly present information or queries in the for of a proof. So here is the paradox that I see:
IF one is to maintain the position of God, in His Divine Sovereignty, to be the same unilaterally within the constraints of our perception of time, yesterday, today and forever. Meaning that God is an ever-present never changing God, THEN, explain how one comes to the position of cessationism, which is the belief that the Apostolic gifts as explained in the Gospels and Acts are no longer in effect today.
The Bible says God is the same forever... His character. It doesn't say His actions are in a repetitive cycle. It more likely has to do with mankind (as Emile said) evolving. My daughter loves My Little Pony and Barbies. Having two older kids, I can guarantee you this will not always be an appropriate gift for her. You don't have to understand the reasons God does what He does to stand in awe of who He is. His ways may never make sense to you b/c you do not have the information He has. He knows what will happen tomorrow for all of mankind. We cannot even plan this evening with absolute certainty.
It's funny how believers use the word 'evolve' when it suits their agendas.
That's not evolving, that's just growing up from childhood to adulthood.
On the contrary, we stand in stark horror at the actions of your God and the reasons He does things.
Baloney, we are not so dense as to not understand psychotic, immoral and unethical behavior.
Ah, so He already has a body count for those who will die of starvation praying for food, today, tomorrow and next year?
Did God know or plan out the tsunami that killed hundreds of thousands of his followers back in 2004?
I counter what you say ma'am simply by using these two references.
1. Christ: "For them, many things are still hidden, but to you, my disciples, who know me and my father, the veil has been removed." Gospels of John, Luke, Mark and Matthew. In this response, Christ was answering a question proposed by one of his disciples, as to why he spoke in parables to the multitude, and the reason for this was two fold. One, to fulfill the scriptures saying that he would speak in parables, and two so that when one of his disciples came across a section of text say like: Isaiah 55:8 where God is telling the people of Israel of how high his thoughts and ways are from the ways of man, we can look upon that text and know that as disciples of Christ, that gap is no longer applicable. Because we now understand his ways, and can grasp how he thinks. The veil that Christ was referring to was one of ineptitude and ignorance. Because of Christ we are capable of knowing not only who God is, but why he does what he does, and the driving force behind all that he does. Which is His own glory.
2. Paul: "Now concering the spiritual gifts, I do not want you to remain ignorant." This opening tells me, that the Church at Corinth had the same issues as many christians do regarding the Spirit of God. And Paul expounds for three chapters on how important it is for the believer not only to understand the "Apostolic GIfts", but on how to exercise in them.
I can appreciate what you're saying. I don't think I was so much referring to gifts as to God's personality in general. His ways are higher than ours and although I do believe a Christian, who studies and has a relationship with God, has a better opportunity to understand the why's than a non-believer does, I still believe there is much we will not know about Him until we meet Him on that day. I would be quite jealous of someone who knew Him fully this side of Heaven, though a little leery maybe.
Nonsense, you have nothing to understand, you have only blind faith and a book of myths, which anyone can read.
Whew! My day was well under way without anyone telling me my beliefs were nonsense... luckily you came along. Good morning!
Perhaps, you have a reading comprehension problem, that's not what I said at all.
YOU were the one who said this...
"I do believe a Christian, who studies and has a relationship with God, has a better opportunity to understand the why's than a non-believer does"
In other words, your day was well under way when you called out the non-believers. So, you can stop playing the victim card.
Yes, all my favorite songs have come on the "radio" this morning. Im in far too good a mood to argue with you.
Beth said: "I do believe a Christian, who studies and has a relationship with God, has a better opportunity to understand the why's than a non-believer does"
I can agree with this in the context that as believers, we try to know and understand the will of God and that can make what happens to us or what happens in the world easier for us to understand.
However, I wouldn't apply that as a general sweeping statement, as in we believers understand better why the sky is blue or why birds migrate etc. Believers tend to answer many questions with "because God made it that way, period." While not wrong in one sense (to those who believe), this does nothing for the unbeliever who asks.
Also, the question "why" in the Bible is often the question asked the most and answered least by God, at least in some aspects. The book of Job is filled with "why", especially why Job suffered. God never tells Job why He did what He did.
I don't mean to pick on you Beth, I just wanted clarify your statement
One of the many contradictions that get rationalized rather than questioned.
He just questioned it. I tried to answer it. This is why I gave up. Even when we do our best to answer, it is immediately dismissed as if we never made the effort at all. You could at least consider our efforts before you dispose of them. I spoke truth to you.
I didn't see your reply when I made mine. What I'm trying to say is your not looking critically at the question, your trying to answer it by rationalizing it. Do you really think man had evolved so much between 2500 years ago and 2000 years ago that he needed new rules and needed to be treated differently? Do you really think rules like it's okay to beat your slave just don't kill them were except-able 2500 years ago?
Are you actually trying to tell us you make efforts to explain things?
I'm not very familiar with cessationism, but with regard to God and Apostolic gifts, I believe that people change, but God does not. There are spiritual gifts that I have seen first hand within the church, but when it comes to healing or tongues, I have yet to see those. I don't know if that is because few have been given those gifts or few know that they have them or have the faith to exercise them.
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