There's a lot of going back and forth about how Christians are this that or another. Yet no one ever pins down exactly what specific belief it is that makes Christians delusional, or hateful or whatever. The fact is that not all Christians believe the same thing, and not even members of our own religious group can pin down exactly what makes us Christian, what defining characteristic.... So let's hear your opinions... what exactly defines a Christian or even Christianity.
Chris·tian·i·ty noun: the religion that is based on the teachings of Jesus Christ.
OK, that's pretty concise and I'll venture to guess that most people will say that's a defining characteristic. Note that it doesn't say that it says strictly adheres to every single teaching of Jesus Christ, just that the religion is based on them. It also says nothing about the old testament or any other part of the Bible except the teachings of Christ.
So basically, by this definition, anyone who's religion is based on the teachings of Jesus Christ is a Christian.
Let's go from there...
I have been told by some Christians that you are not a true Christian, if you have not been baptized (as an adult) and have not given up your life for him. Is this true?
That eliminates quite a few denominations including Catholics, Presbyterians and Methodists. Many of which are likely to be surprised that they are no longer Christian.
It also eliminates me from the Christian pool.
I consider it to be it to be an unfortunate belief based on inadequate understanding...don't you?
No not really... I just believe it to be someone mistakenly believing that their denomination defines the whole of Christianity.
Your definition is correct according to what it is officially defined as but it is more than just following the teachings of Christ. It is believing that Jesus is the son of God. Anyone can follow the teachings of Christ like to love your neighbours but this is very secondary to accepting Jesus as the son of God
There are lots of denominations that don't believe that Jesus is the actual physical son of God. Once again you are confusing the teachings of YOUR denomination with the whole of Christianity.
Based on that definition, a self proclaimed "christian" may be a worshiper of nature who feels they are following Jesus example and becoming closer to nature by wearing sandals and eating fish. No need to actually believe in God, Jesus as a historical figure, let alone as God Himself, Creator and Savior. No need to believe in the bible, sin, the need of salvation, or the gospel message. Anyone who finds deep meaning in a single quote from Christ can and may claim to be a follower.
Actually, I think your definition is pretty accurate in terms of how loosely "christian" is now used. Of course this makes the term close to worthless in describing what the person claiming to be one may really believe. No surprise though, since Jesus told us the day would come when all sorts of people would claim to follow Him, while in reality not even knowing, understanding or accepting who He is, why He came or what a relationship with Him consists of.
Christians, by the OP's definition, may not even believe in Satan, but if they did they might realize that creating a plethora of false versions of Christianity is a brilliant way for Satan to cause confusion and undermine the gospel. It is to be so pervasive a deception that Jesus questioned if when He returned He would find any genuine faith. It is kind of like those who believe god is everything and everything is god, which as an equation cancels out and equals zero, rendering the whole concept meaningless. If everyone who is moved by and embraces any small aspect of Jesus teachings are "Christians", those truly following Him become a proverbial needle in the "Christianity" haystack. Their voices will be drowned by the masses espousing whatever versions of "Christianity" they have assembled for themselves to pacify what their itching ears want to hear.
Anticipating the next question, "who gets to decide who is Christian and who isn't?" Jesus does. So in the meantime, that nature worshiper and anyone else who wants to, will continue to claim to be Christian, just as Jesus prophesied. It's just another sign of the times for those with ears to hear.
That was a wholly judgmental post. Almost everything in it. To top it with "Jesus will decide" was just icing. You do realize you just said, effectively, that unless they believe the teachings that you have been taught, they aren't Christian...That they are evil and tools of Satan.
You can't trust a heretic. I bet she/he isn't even Catholic. Talk about perversion. lol...
Well, although you labeled me a "heretic," it seems you, at minimum, agree with the first 2 paragraphs of the post that garnered that response from you.
At least we agree on something.
It was a joke, but you know that. I got it from what you said about all the splinter groups perverting the religion. Are you Catholic? If not then by definition you are part of those splinter groups, what ever your beliefs are.
Then again by definition you are a heretic.
As am I, of course. More so because I was born a Catholic and became an atheist.
But I did like what you said about the belief that everything is god and god is everything. You are so right. If all is god there is no god, as god is defined by Christians as something above all else.
Which makes Pantheism an atheistic belief. The Catholic Church agrees with us too.
I'm glad because that was my intent when I helped create Scientific or naturalistic Pantheism.
No, I'm not a believer in Pantheism, though I am a Pantheist. I don't actually believe anything. I weigh probability. As Paul Harrison once told me, even in the religion I helped found I am a heretic.
I imagine that this forum is possibly born from the unanswered question that I posed to you the other day. Jesus gave specific qualifiers of salvation but they are listed biblically. How does one find out what those qualifiers are if we who call ourselves Christians first tell them that they cannot trust scripture? There is a uniform document that spells out for each of us what the Lord requires. But I am finding that many Christians are more and more reporting that "leaning to your own understanding" is best. How can that be? What is the "thing" that drew any of us? It was not a "talking donkey in the middle of the street" for many of us. It was the reading and the hearing and the doing of biblical text. Jesus started his ministry on earth with the recitation of WRITTEN words of God. How can we not? For me, the worst statement of "Christianity" is "put that bible down and feeeel your way" we must hear it and do it as written. It is imperative we understand what he wants. We cannot without biblical text. To say it is tainted is to say that Jesus was wrong.
This is something that has always troubled me as well. How can ppl say they want to follow Jesus, but then discount the main recording of his life and work? It is like saying you want to write like Shakespeare (we use that example a lot) but saying you don't want to read his writings.
It's at this point you are creating your own god. You are making Jesus a god that is comfortable to you. Yet the first commandment is to have no other gods before you. Either God is who He is, and He is to be accepted on His own terms, as any of us would want to be, or He is our own creation. To me that is an absolute danger... recreating the Creator to fit into your box. I personally could no more discount the Bible when it comes to God than I could discount oxygen when it comes to breathing. It would have disastrous consequences.
And yet, all we have are disastrous consequences from those who think the same way, from those who follow the Bible rather than follow Christ.
Christ followed the WRITTEN documentation of God. He repeated it a lot.
Yep. He warned the scribes. He warns us too.
I wouldn't use the Shakespeare one too often. We're not sure Shakespeare actually wrote what is accredited to him.
LOL, I actually watched a literature professor and a forensic linguistics professor almost come to blows over that once.
Which, of course, has nothing to do with the Bible... although that forensic linguistics teacher had some interesting thoughts on that one too...
Ah, there we go... full circle.
With religious zeal, no doubt. Most people are drawn to authenticity. For them a perfect forgery of a Picasso has no value even though the paintings are identical. Just so a Christian would be appalled to learn that the words of Jesus were actually spoken by another before him or in place of there actually being a Jesus. Same words, same meaning, but of far less value for them somehow.
The brain is amazing.
Makes no difference to me, I never liked Picasso. But a master forger, now that is a person with real skill.
Yeah, Ive heard that too. Of course Shakespeare is just a name... whoever wrote it... they are that man's work... we could call him Bob, but then... could be a little confusing. We could go with "the artist formerly known as Shakespeare."
But would you say the same thing if you found out that Jesus never existed? The messages would be the same.
That is true. If Jesus never existed, most of his msg. would still be the same: "Love your neighbor, help the widow and the orphan" etc... all good stuff... of course the stuff about "I (Jesus) am the way, the truth and the life, no man can come to the Father except by me." would change dramatically... especially concerning salvation.
To some of us, salvation isn't the point.
I never desired a savior. I wanted a role-model.
I understand... and to some of us salvation is everything.
I get that too...
I addressed my views on CYA religion earlier
I only drop in every once in a while but I have to ask, "CYA religion?"
Catholic Youth Association?
What do you mean?
Cover your ass religion. Religion for the sake of not having something bad happen to you.
Weird... I thought you meant this... and it didn't make sense... in any way.
Actually there's no still at all for me.
I don't fear Hell in the least. I don't believe in it, but even if I did I wouldn't fear it.
And I never really needed anyone to die for my sins. I mean it's cool and whatever, but it's not a big attraction for me. I did them, I'll deal with the consequences... whatever those should be.
One might say it is immoral to allow someone else to pay for your sins.
I would consider it shirking my responsibility, yes. It would go against my ethical code, for example, to rob a grocery store and then let someone else go to jail for it.
I understand that. But saying that all the sudden you don't have to because someone else did doesn't really seem right to me.
That's why it's a gift... it's never gonna be right. We'll never deserve it.
I understand that some people think that way, and that's cool.
To me it would be a cop-out. It would be not taking responsibility for my actions. It's too easy to just say "Yes I did this horrible thing, but it's okay now because someone else died for it"
I know you know all this stuff... it's just hard not to share it when I hear your thought process.
It's not supposed to be like we sin, but we get a free ticket out, so do as you please, it's covered.
It's that God is holy... no man is sinless... no man lives a holy life as God requires for those who He calls into His kingdom... so b/c He saw that no man could live up to His request, He made a way. He sent Jesus to be the sacrifice that we were not able to make. It's a beautiful gift.. one we should esteem above all else, b/c the sacrifice was so great and so unselfish. You can't pay the price, no, but you can... as you said earlier, just try to follow Jesus's example. It's kind of the ultimate 'paying it forward.'
Edit: oops... looks like bB and I were on the same page there... sorry...
Sorry, but the Romans forced Jesus onto the cross, it was not a sacrifice or a gift, it was a debt to be paid to the Roman state for the crimes Christ was convicted. It's hilarious you folks can't get your facts straight.
The facts about the death of Jesus on the cross? Well you're getting closer.
Those are the facts of the myth, Beth, if facts can be used to describe a myth. The Roman state crucified Christ, did they not?
Oh... the facts of the myth... ok... yeah, you left that word out. I thought maybe you'd had an epiphany.
I noticed you didn't address the question, hence you must agree that the Romans did indeed crucify Christ for the crimes they convicted Him, which was the debt He actually had to pay. It had nothing to do with any salvation nonsense or dying for anyone's sins.
Yes, Melissa, there are those who attempt to abuse the gift of salvation in the manner you mentioned, but that's not how it works at all.. Christ did not die so that we can go along happily sinning all willy-nilly. His sacrifice was not meant to be a "get out of Hell free" Card. If you recall from the OT, God was a little more... hands on with people who did wrong. Usually, his hands on approach was heavy-handed( to say the least). The death of Christ on the cross Basically lessened that hand and ushered in his Grace. So What That death did was give us the opportunity to take responsibility for our wrongs, To repent and apologize, and then try again to get things right in our lives and settle up with him at the end instead of handling the situation immediately.
I know this is not your belief, Melissa but let me try to explain how we view it. It ties into the premise that "by one man sin entered into the world". No man could pay for another's sin, because they owed the same debt. Jesus did not owe anything. His payment was sufficient to cover all. Like the credit card commercials, you can put a price on each sin, but Jesus sacrifice covered them all...it was "priceless". He paid a debt He did not owe because we owed a debt we could not pay. This was God's means of remaining just, (requiring accountability for sin), and allowing sinners a way to be justified...through Christ.
Oh, I understand it. Disagreement doesn't equal ignorance.
I believe that no other man's sin is my responsibility. I don't owe God for something I didn't do. Original sin is not really a philosophy I believe in.
You don't have to. Unless you purport you have no sin of your own, original sin is a moot point.
No, I'm not saying I have no sin. What I'm saying is my sin is my responsibility. I owe no debt that isn't my own. I don't need anyone to save me from it. I'll bear the responsibility all on my own.
I don't require someone else to die for it. I got this.
It's interesting cause in AA even the Atheists have to get to a place where they say, "I don't got this." It seems to me, none of us really got this, you know?
Not quite the same. There's a difference between leaning on somebody for support and for guidance and allowing others to take responsibility for your actions.
I'm sure you're not suggesting that AA members should be exempt from taking responsibility for what they did when they made the choice to drink... right?
Absolutely not, but then... a sinner has to acknowledge his sin before God. The salvation is not a free ticket in so much as it is a requirement of God. You gotta be this tall to ride this ride... you're not tall enough on your own, but get on my shoulders, Ill lift you. No matter how far you stretch, you will never be tall enough on your own without a savior b/c it is required.. but no fear... salvation is a gift to those who will receive it. It's so incredibly perfect.
Steps 4 and 5 cover just that question, Mel.
Turning your will and your life over to the care of God as you understand him is what a believing addict does in step 3. A non believer simply lets go of his/her need to control everything and lets things happen as they will. And the Big Book doesn't have a chapter addressed to atheists, only agnostics. And, in my experience, non believers most often find that the power greater than themselves is the collective support of their brothers and sisters in recovery.
Im not sure if you understood my point... hopefully you understand that this is an important conversation and not another debate. I feel quite honored that Melissa is allowing me to share my faith... she's been quite generous.
Seriously, Beth!? By all means, carry on with your ''important'' conversation that I was so unbelievably rude as to attempt to contribute to. That was really snarky. And I don't enjoy being spoken to like a child who interrupted while the grown ups were talking.
It was. And I added another statement to the post.
Well it was probably time to move on anyway... Im gonna go outside for a while. Have a good nite all.
(And Melissa, thanks for letting me share that, especially knowing how you were raised in the church, you could have stopped me, but you allowed me to share and I really appreciate it. )
It's hilarious to watch all of you "Christians" fight amongst each other, each trying to tell the other exactly what they don't understand about Christianity, which is pretty much what you say to the non-believers too.
No wonder your religion causes so much conflict in the world.
If scientists behaved like you do, we'd all still be living in caves.
So if a bunch of guys in lab coats had words with one another... the housing market would be affected? I don't really get that.
Yes, I know you don't get it, Beth, that is entirely the point.
Still focusing on the person when you have nothing of value to say. Hilarious.
Why not keep talking about me personally, Beth?
Where do you get that nonsense from, Christ was crucified for the crimes the Roman state convicted him, that was his debt. He didn't just willingly walk up to a cross and had someone nail him to it.
So, trying to get a handle on your thoughts and feelings here, what is your view of the Perfection of God?
I ask because the whole point of the Savior is that God is 100% perfect (and yes, whoever will read this and want to chime in, I understand that perfect means 100%. There either is perfection or there is not, there is no half-way) and that if faithfully killing the lambs for thousands of years failed to make someone 'good enough' to get into His presence then there is no way we can 'deal with it on our own.' But I'm sure you've heard that plenty of times, I'm wondering what your thoughts are on it.
It would interesting if anyone here could actually define that perfection and back it up with scriptures, that is, if they are willing to acknowledge the scriptures that show God behaving like a psychotic despot. Or, is mass murder considered perfection?
I guess if one is going to attempt to obtain the perfection of the God of the bible one should admit to being jealous and cause evil to generations of those who dislike him and reward the thousands (not millions or billions) that love him. You've caused me to re-read the 10 commandments and start another forum.
If another man tried to steal your wife's heart... would you feel jealousy? Would there be sin in that feeling or sin in your reaction? Is the Creator bound to the laws of His creation or does He naturally supersede them?
If your enemy tried to destroy you and your family, should you deal with them or should you allow them to continue? Is the Creator bound to the laws of His creation or does He naturally supersede them?
If you had it in your power to bless your children, would you do it or would you withhold the blessing and why? Is the Creator bound to the laws of His creation or does He naturally supersede them?
If someone dislikes you, do you cause evil on them for generations? Do you continue to punish his children and their children simply for disliking you?
I believe you are changing the facts of the story to suit your need to defame.
Can you see into the hearts of others now, let alone from generation to generation?
You judge God by your standards, but you lack wisdom and knowledge, we all do.
What do you have that He did not give you yet you spit in the wind at Him.
Please stick to the discussion. I asked a very simple question about one of the 10 commandments and you start making it personal right away.
If someone dislikes you, do you cause evil on them for generations? Do you continue to punish his children and their children simply for disliking you?
Please answer the question or don't bother responding.
But I did. It was you who didn't respond. I simply posed the same questions to you that you posed to God, you ignored them completely. If you are interested in the answer, do you need answers from me or do you need them from yourself?
You didn't answer the question all I see in your answer is you you you you yet you spit in the wind at Him. And in this last one the same thing. Nothing about the question of how you deal with a God who admits he is jealous and punishes generation of people for the fault of not being like by one person.
Right, and I said you were distorting facts in order to support your point.
I then asked you the questions you are asking of God... you would like to put God on your level in certain circumstances, but not in others. You ask why God is jealous when His beloved is lead into the arms of another god... I asked would you be jealous if your wife were lead into the arms of another man. I asked if it is wrong to feel the pain of that rejection? Apply the same reasoning to the following questions you posed.
Actually God's perfection doesn't really come into my feelings about a savior. However I don't think that nobody made it into heaven until the death of Christ.
Does that make sense? (Not do you agree, literally is what I wrote understandable?) I mean thousands of years and not one person gets to heaven until Christ?
But really, honestly, it doesn't matter to me. Getting into heaven isn't my goal. I either do or I don't. It mattered at one point I guess. But not that much and not for very long.
Not really. The idea that no one can come to god except through Jesus could be interpreted to mean that we are to emulate the ideal of Jesus. Jesus could just be metaphorical, a parable designed to show the way to a better world and to god. No real Jesus even needs to have existed for the message to be carried on.
A lot of religions teach the same thing, that only by being kind to all living things, living in peace, can we get to god. The messages are basically the same. The benefit for man kind would be the same if more people actually followed such teachings,
Accepting Jesus as the Son of God, born of the virgin Mary is the foundation of faith. Jesus was God in human form, there is no room for interpretation. To be a Christian is to accept this fact by pure faith.
not necessarily true. I know a few Christians that DON'T believe in a virgin birth - and earlier christianity even toyed with the idea of MARY being virgin-born as to not have the concept of original sin so that Jesus could be born.
Additionally, a lot of early christian sects (meaning late first or early second century - I think the docetics, but I could be wrong on the sect) believed that Jesus was adopted by god at the moment of his baptism. Not that he was born the son of god.
Therefore, your post may emulate your idea of Christianity, but it's not necessarily true to say that is accepted as fact by faith across the board.
There is a reason that there are over 44,000 sects or denominations of Christianity. The realistic term would probably be more like "christianities" since specific beliefs may rest on a denominational or even personal level, depending on the person calling themselves a Christian.
It is all a matter of your faith. Whose report do you believe?
I merely believe the Bible. The Bible teachings of Christ are simple in order that even children may uderstand. Theologians and experts argue and overcomplicate (what a surprise) the simple ease of the word of God.
"no one can come to god except through Jesus"
What does that mean? You can interpret it several ways, including that we need to fight Jesus for the right to enter. "You are not getting in here except through me." Not that I would advocate that interpretation as being correct.
The bible as a whole is not an easy book to read or to interpret. In fact it can and has been interpreted to mean slavery is a good moral practice endorsed by god or it can be interpreted to mean the opposite. What ever you want to prove you can prove through scripture no matter what side of a subject you are on.
The scholars argue these things because the bible is not simple or easy to interpret. You interpret it one way and someone else interprets it a different way? Why do you think Catholics were never allowed to read it? It is divisive and Rome understood that all too well..
As soon as it was let loose the religion became divided and continues to splinter over interpretation.
Interpretation=complication...The word is simple. God is good, so only good can be the interpretation. I agree that people like to "use" the Bible to prove or disprove any point under the sun. I disagree however that the teachings of Christ are complex, I believe them to be very direct and simple.
but some of the early Christians by the 2nd and 3rd century WERE using the Bible - well, it wasn't canonized and put together quite yet, but they were reading texts that they circulated and studying what was available. They all came to different conclusions, and it's not until orthodoxy began (in the form of catholicism) that there was A semblance of a unified faith to believe in.
Still today, there are 44000 different versions of Christianity - and almost all of them use the bible as a reference. Are you claiming that your interpretation (or your denomination's interpretation) is the only correct one? What makes you so sure? Was it just what you were taught? That's the no true scottsman fallacy to say that other people aren't "true" christian because their dogma differs from yours. If that was the measure of truth then there would be NO true Christians, because the christianity of today is vastly different from the first scattered Christians in the first two hundred years after Jesus is claimed to have lived.
I would never tell someone they were not a true Christian nor am I delusional enough to believe that I know all...that's where my faith comes in...I pray and read and study with an open mind and I love God with my whole being.God knows each and everyone of us and he knows our hearts and minds.
but the real question then becomes do you care whether or not what you believe is TRUE? How do you verify truth? How do you examine it? Define it? Live by it?
I'm not telling you that your beliefs aren't true. For me, I want to know more than I want to just believe. In order to know, you have to examine. You have to test. You have to quantify, you have to justify and you have to be willing to examine things critically. I can't just "believe" something that was written without examining why or how or by who.
I guess some of us just aren't built that way.
I understand completely how you feel and that is how you are "wired' and how God made you and that is beautiful...myself, I am a leap of faith kind of girl. God rescued me at the age of 9...I was saved and baptized by age 12, and no I wasn't raised in a church family with church parents(far from it)...God made us all different and gave us all different gifts and desires. So God Bless you and I have much enjoyed our conversation and I pray that you find what you are looking for:)
I'm not really "looking" for anything, exactly.
I was raised southern baptist. My parents were part-time missionaries, and I spent some time in Africa growing up. I went to a Bible college and studied Greek, Hebrew, Latin biblical literature and theology. I became an atheist after that, but my doubts began as soon as I started reading the Bible in its original languages and began studying the early church.
I want to believe and know as many true things as possible, and in order to do that, I need to know that the things I know or believe are actually true. Blind faith just isn't my thing.
Thanks for the friendly, on topic conversation. It's much appreciated.
What does it take for anyone to believe anything about anything? A bit of faith. You cannot know for sure the specific dialect of people from that long ago. There is absolutely no way to test that. There are writings but no way to test the specific dialect of the person writing; or dictating; or translating. You must have faith that the deliverer is credible; accurate; not sleepy; or vengeful across the board. There is a lot to factor in. And in the final analysis, you believe the word of one believed by many to be expert. He has a degree from the rocket science institute of rooty-poot in MeVille, Heavenwho. You believe him because he says he is expert. He tested and many others agreed. You don't really have to know much else right? Faith... God needs ID. and some other credentials. You must know his mothers name; his complexion; his hair lengh; his fathers name and his government name... not much faith.
Quite so. It wasn't until Ignatius insisted in a letter to all the churches in 171 ad that Jesus was a virgin birth that it began to be taken as gospel, so to speak. Why would he have had to write such a letter if that was already the majority view?
In the Jebrew the word for "virgin" is the same word for "young woman". The doctrine of the virgin birth may be nothing more than a greek misinterpretation (much like the way one of the gospels has jesus riding on two donkeys into jerusalem due to a mistranslation/misinterpretation of an old testament passage)
Foundation of your faith.
The circumstances of Jesus's birth mean little to me. By that I mean I wouldn't care if he was virgin born, born the "normal way" or if he was laid in a egg on a rock and left for the sun to hatch. It wouldn't change my faith in any way shape or form.
So obviously it's not a foundation of my Christian faith.
That's confusing to me because I believe accepting by faith that every word in the Bible is "the truth," is the foundation of my belief and trust and faith in God. I am not judging, to each their own, but if I didn't believe every word to be truth and fact then I couldn't believe at all.
*Shrugs* I didn't say I didn't believe it, I said it doesn't matter to me.
As far as believing it, it's one of the more plausible of the miracles in the bible. Virgins giving birth to babies isn't common, but it's not exactly unheard of. It happens a few times a year even today.
Regardless, my faith is built more on the lessons of Christ then how he made it onto earth. I don't need to know whether it's true or not because it doesn't factor into my faith.
I understood what you were saying, only wishing to make the point that I believe every word written as fact:)
"I believe every word written as fact:)"
I don't think you do. I think you interpret what you read. If you didn't you couldn't justify some of the things in it.
I read it as written interpreting as little as possible. But many passages do require interpretation.
Human virgin birth? Every few years? Do you have an example. Human conception and birth of a viable baby still requires human sperm as far as I know. Or at least there is no known example of it.
I can give you an example.
Teenage girl. Finds out she's pregnant. Her parents find out and flip their lids. She tearfully approaches them and says "I have no idea how this happened. I've never even had sex!"
Happens in Christian and Catholic schools all the time.
Yes, it does require sperm and an egg...
But it doesn't require intercourse or scientific intervention.
Yes, I know I am replying to my own post here...
I went to grab the links to proven cases
(A case of pregnancy without penetration..... by Gerber btw)
Found a documented case of a girl who was born without a vagina being impregnated by ingested semen after performing oral sex.
Now THAT is a miracle.
Here's the ABC News link.
http://abcnews.go.com/Health/Wellness/t … id=9732562
Once again, what a big ole beautiful world. I don't discount anything.
Ok...I have a question...And this is not to just you, I am just using your post as it has the wording that i wish to base my quesion from....
Why would Jesus (God), need to use the written word of God to explain himself??
And to answer the OP...Christian means little Christ or Christ-like...So that to me would imply one who lives their life in replication of how Christ lived his. So I think to how the bible descibes his actions...(The four Gospels, as most Christians feel these are by eyewitnesses, Not Paul's letters) And I don't know very many who actually live this way...There are many who follow the teachings of Paul (Christianity that ATM was refering to) and completely fail to follow what Christ preached. As many who are Christian say...The Bible is the error free word of God and by such, it should be quite easy to read and understand what Jesus said, did and taught.
Jesus was a Jew and followed the scriptures and law of the Jews (The Old Testament) and he said that not jot or tittle would pass away from that law until all that he had spoken of (the fulfillment of the Kingdom of Heaven/God) had come to past. So I am curious as to how many Christians are following the Old Testament laws that Jesus is speaking of or are they following Christianity that is found in Paul's teachings?
I am thinking there are Alot more Paulians than there are Christians
jot or a tittle.
Jesus came to fulfill the law. He was the completion of what God began. God saw that man constantly failed to follow His law, so in His mercy, He sent Jesus to pay the price for our sin. Paul's teachings are God breathed so Im not sure what the actual issue is there.
As far as it being inerrant, yes, but is your point that inerrant equals simple?
Yes. Jesus came to fulfill the law...That is said alot...But I am curious if Christians actually know what this means...Before I say what is taught about this phrase in religious classes, we'll see what is offered...
So now there is mercy...So is God Just or is he Merciful? One can't be both as mercy is a suspension of Just...Also if God is unchanging...Why would he be Just in his actions for sin in the Old Testament and then Merciful to sin in the New?
If Paul's teachings are from God, why do they differ from what Jesus taught?
Inerrant should mean that there would be no need to "interpret" as it should be read and understood by anyone...Also error free means that nothing should contradict and the Gospels do...If someone needs to go to school to learn apologetics the explain the contradictions then the bible isn't error free...
Also if there is mercy and Jesus fulfilled the law, then why do we still follow the "ten commandments" (and I say it as such as these are not the actual ten commandments as per the bible)...Why do we still hold that homosexuality is wrong? We don't stone our kids for miss behaving, we don't stone people for working on the sabbath (Saturday btw). There are plenty of things in the Old testament that we don't do now, but cherry pick what we use from the OT to condemn others though
The old test... was God showing how serious he considers sin. It is worthy of death. The powers disobeyed the law secretly whilst exposing and "punishing" others. They were no longer worthy to carry out the orders. Mercy came with Jesus. The new test... he SHOWED us what it all means. The words do not SPIRITUALLY differ. It is STILL WRONG to have other Gods before him and not love your brother as yourself, etc.
You need faith to get spirit which you also need to understand.
So God Changed in how he deals with sin.
If you can have another God before God, then there must be more than one God...or is it things we hold(worship) over God. If there is more than one God, how does one know which is the right one...If it is things we hold in worship over God, then the average American (about 99%) is worshipping other "gods"
Oh and the "Powers" you spoke of which disobeyed God, where chosen by God to lead...To include even Moses...which is why he wasn't allowed into the promised land...But God didn't kill him for sinning, he still allowed him to lead...he was just not allowed to enter the promised land...Others who sinned God killed...
And now you judge God. selah
You seem to want to argue over "words". You must use spirit to find out what it all means. God does not change. His nature and his law are forever. He did change the way he dealt with sin for the sake of man. No one can do it all. We ALL have sin and without faith in the sacrifice we are truly dead (spiritually) he has a reason for doing A then B. Since my brain cannot fathom the entire picture; spirit relies solely upon God who does know and understand all of it. God does not and will not change. The spiritual know what that means.
Yes, we have many "Gods" e.g., mom, dad, son, daughter, teacher, preacher, boss, house, car, clothing, sex, drugs, SELF. Nothing and no one more valuable...
Not even we treat all of our children the same. We know our kids. We know their capabilities. As such, God deals with us according to our faith or lack thereof. Oh an as God, he gets to do it like he wants. We have boundaries. Or not...
Nah, I am not judging anyone or anything. I am pointing things out based on your words.
If it is true that God's Nature and Laws do not Change....Then he is still the same God of the OT and the Laws of the OT still stand...
So as a true Christian and following God's laws we should still be doing as the OT law states...Jesus was the sacrifice, so animal sacrifice is no longer required for forgiveness of our sins as was required, but the Laws that dictate what is sin are still in place...
Working on Sabbath= Stoning
Disobedient Kids= stoning
Teaching religion other than God's Laws (OT) = Stoning
and the list goes on...
You keep speaking of spirit to find out what it all means...But then say that no one can know or understand God's ways as his ways are not our ways...Which is it?
If it is true that God's Nature and Laws do not Change....Then he is still the same God of the OT and the Laws of the OT still stand...
Bingo! The penalty is still in effect too. The wages of sin IS still death. He gave us a gift. Jesus. When we believe, we will not perish. Because of our belief.
Because all sin, no one is able to throw the first stone. Remember, we just talked about that.
Ahh...So if only God can now Judge and no-one can throw the first stone?? Then why is there so much stone throwing...???
Seems to me, there is not a single person who still follow the laws laid down by God....
If he is to judge and we are not to throw stones, then why be concerned with things like Gay Marriage, Abortion, killing, raping, slavery or any other sin someone may wish to do? Let each person do as they wish (Free will and all) and let God figure it all out when the time comes?
I would wager that it is because Man created God and not the other way around and so we feel we are "without sin" and thereby allowed to cast stones (Be Judge and Executioner)...
As has been mentioned before by many others....it is a case of " I am right and all others who do not believe as I are wrong and deserve to die"
The law still stands... right??? We cannot punish the offense. Our spiritual eyes may discern a person's fruit. But the judgment of what happens to the sinner is God's business. He deals with us according to our own faith. He has lots to sort out. But he can and will.
Ok so we agree... We should all mind our own damn business and keep it out of Government and other peoples lives and believe as we wish and when our time comes God will Judge accordingly...I don't know very many Christians at all...and I mean very few...that follow this... period...
So it is just a case of "I am right and you are wrong...and everyone must live like me...because anything else is offensive to me and living my my life"
Imo you must study to show thyself approved. Oh wait that is scripture. We have our own faith. We must follow as we have been given. Only God can tell who's who. Minding your own damned business is dangerous if you stand by and watch your brother err. God knows.
How can you know if your brother is erring if only God knows? How can you possibly point out when and where your brother errs if They are following as they believe they have been given by God? It is equally as dangerous to intervene in what is actually God's will for your brother. Study to show YOURSELF approved, not your brother.
Making the assessment that your brother is "erring" (especially if they are saying that they are following the way they were led by God slides into the territory addressed by Matthew 7:1-5. You may be trying to stop your brother from erring based on what YOU see and you may end up erring based on what GOD sees
I have noticed that we consistently speak along the SAME lines. The spirit agrees with spirit in weighy matters. That is why the CHURCH was instructed to not argue over words. That is the thing that breaks off a new denomination. God has one mind. His people do too. My example is the confrontation of Jesus about the petty bicker about his followers "working" on a sabbath to eat. It was NOT that he "disagreed" with the law... he knew what it MEANT. Not ALL is "expedient" for each and ever little... the CHURCH was warned. God has ONE mind.
The WRITTEN is WRITTEN for all to see. Jesus told us what it all means together. He fulfilled the law. He displayed the law of God. Paul agrees with God. He does not differ from Jesus. He had the spiritual discernment that I keep referring to. Paul knew what the words meant. He was CHOSEN BY GOD to tell us. Paul by the spirit knew the MEANING of scripture. God allowed him to tell his side of the story. Paul knew the way. We get a good glimpse of his entire before and after. He was a great example of how to "get" it.
You didn't answer my question...
Why would Jesus (God), need to use the written word of God to explain himself??
And Paul used the Old Testament as well...As the New hadn't been written yet...And yes, what he taught and what the Gospels say of Jesus is not the same.
How did Jesus fulfill the Law? What is meant by that?
Jesus needed the word of God to explain himself because spiritually, he IS the word of God. He came to DO the word correctly. He came to show us PERFECT and then be sacrificed to atone for ALL sin and act as the only "bridge" to God. The curtain to the "private" dwelling was rent. Jesus is NOW the way.
Paul was helping to write the new testament. he KNEW what the OT "meant" he does not differ spiritually. The "meat" is there.
How did Jesus fulfill the law??????? He DID it... He SHOWED us what it ALL meant. He cleared all misconceptions concerning it. Spirit knows. God knows spirit. Jesus displayed for the church God's intent. They no listen...
So Jesus, The word of God, ...needed the written version of himself to explain himself?
Jesus came to live the law (The Old Testament law perfectly, But he broke some of those as well) and to fulfill this law just that, not that he did away with it in anyway...This statement also means that Jesus was to fulfill the prophesies of the Messiah...According to Jesus and the Gospels, the Old Testament laws are still very much in place and never went away...(The Gospels were written for Jews (Christian Jews) NOT the Gentiles)...Paul's letters were written to Gentiles and they differ from what was required of the Jews...So it would seem that the rules for Jewish Christians following what Jesus taught was different that what Paul taught to the Gentiles...
Pauls was not helping write the New Testament...He was writing letters of instruction or inspiration to the Churches he started..He had no Idea it would become part of the Bible that we know today. Paul never met Jesus...His whole teaching was based on his interpretation of the Old Testament (Guided by God if that is what you wish to think)...But as I have said before, Why does God's word need to be "Interpreted" is can be plainly read as to the meaning if one knows and understand the context of the audience of the day and how authors wrote in those times.
So Jesus, The word of God, ...needed the written version of himself to explain himself?
Now if that does not qualify as an argument over words... What was given to the Jews was totally misunderstood by them. They wrestled with words too. Jesus tried to show them. They mostly refused and killed him. But he got the points across to Paul and Paul broke it down in his letters. And maybe he did not KNOW he was writing scripture but God did.
Jesus did not break the law. He knew what it meant (broken record syndrome starting) Jesus DID the law perfectly. He had the correct interpretation of scripture. He was a master at knowledge of God's intent.
He had the same heart. Different person; same mind. God and Jesus agreed "seamlessly".
You have a great way with words, which reflects a lot of great thinking... and perceiving
Grateful! The Lord showed me what he meant. I just regurgitate. sorry did I get that on you? Lol
- delightful word, regurgitate. You've got to come up with a better one to prove me right. Like...interpret, reveal, express, channel, intuit, Do you believe in intuition Miss. C?
She is referring to Someone who was One in consciousness with God's Spirit. We, however, are still identified with our human forms, and not causal Spirit. That consciousness takes a lot of spiritual evolving.
You know you're gonna have to repeat that like 700 more times...
The verse has no reference to Jesus. It is to help us sympathize/realize our weakness without God's strength.
In My View
I really thought that Jesus spoke those words on the cross. I gotta check.
Yes he did, on the cross... because, at that point, he was rather overtaken with pain and suffering (understatement) in his human form and God seemed to be taking his sweet time (in bringing him back into His Ocean of Spirit.)
And God is not. Again, seems that the "one seamless mind" doesn't fit very well.
God = the Ocean of Spirit.
Jesus, being Human, was completely tuned into the Ocean of Spirit.
("Kingdom of Heaven is within."
"Know ye not that ye are gods (spiritual beings)?")
self = soul = equals god. not God. But, we will (eventually through free will,) merge back into His Ocean from which we emerged... where we keep our identity at the same time!
That's why if you pray to Jesus He is able to respond!
Take it or leave it.
I will leave it, thanks.
I find that "ocean of spirit" is a jumble of words without meaning, words strung together that sound impressive but carry no value in communication.
You pay too much attention to words. Many of those have many meanings. Spirit helps in choosing.
Probably because I make a real effort to communicate rather than mouth platitudes constructed by a third party.
Making up new words, or new meanings for old words, does little to promote communication. Much like "spirit helps in choosing"; a phrase with no meaning as "spirit" is a fiction of the imagination that cannot help do anything, let alone choose which meaning of a word is being used.
Yes, it's called communicating effectively. We have moved beyond the grunting of Neanderthals. Making sense is actually an option.
Omnipresent, Omnipotent, Omniscient Realm of Consciousness. Is that better?
It absolutely makes no sense.
But I think it means "I'm right, I have no idea how to cognitively explain anything, but I know that I'm the only person in the world that is a Christian. I must be because no one else is saying such gibberish"
Certainly, Christians have mastered the art of gibberish.
Sounds like you don't believe in the Trinity...
Two different persons? I thought God was a Spirit? A person can be seen and heard by all...and therefore proved to exist...This would certainly get rid of the Atheists if God was an actual person...
Jesus is God...Not a separate person...He was God in Flesh...the WORD of God...Therefore the voice of God...so a part of God...not a separate entity
Jesus mentioned that he and John had been other identities in their last lives, which proves that He had been human at one point. Through spiritual evolving and free will he became an "Only (through Christ consciousness) Begotten Son."
According to my Sources. Just sharing.
You will have to point to that in the Bible...As I don't ever remember reading or seeing that in any of my studies ever...
John had been refered to as Elijah on occasion...The one who wandered the Desert preaching of the Coming Lord (God)...But that is only a comparision between the two to match "modern" prophet (John) with Prophet of old (Elijah).. to account for Prophesy of Jesus being the Lord (God) as spoke of in the OT. Notice John wandered the desert preaching his message as well...the same as Elijah..
No. Not a comparison. John and Jesus were incarnations of Elijah and Elisha
Umm.. please show me where it says otherwise...Myself and every biblical scholar in the world would like to see that please...We don't mind learning new things...Because that is not how any scholar reads or interprets that phrase or comment...Once again...Take it back to the time period and the audience for which it was intended...
They misinterpret. Do they call up Jesus on the Main Line? My Guru has.
Umm.. Ok...your Guru talks to Jesus on a "phone"...
We are done talking...
Actually.. I will say one more thing... We have a name for those who make claims such as your Guru has...They are known as Cult Leaders if they have followers...And not the "Good" kind...Just don't drink the Kool-Aid.. Please...
Now we have nothing else to talk about...I am not a Psychologist
God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit agree. Three separate entities; one mind. You are really on a roll with those "words"
So you believe in three Gods of which they all think alike...
Sounds like a couple of posters on here...
Jesus never talked to Paul...Paul states he never actually met Jesus...So Paul "understood" the Written word...While all the rest of the Pharisee's did not...(Paul was a Pharisee)...
Ok so Jesus did the law perfectly, So why are we not still following that law as Jesus did,,,?
Only Jesus COULD give the CORRECT interpretation of God's word.
Paul RECEIVED the gift.
Ok..and ONCE again I ask...Why are we not following the correct interpretation as given by Jesus.?
And let me see if I understand you correctly... There are only two people in this world who understood and gave correct interpretation of the OT scriptures... Jesus and Paul???
What about John who wrote the Book of Revelations? Or the second and Third century early Church Leaders who wrote, the books of 1,2 Peter, 1,2,3 John, Jude, 2 Thessalonians, Hebrews, Ephesians, James, 1,2 Timothy and Titus...?
The message of Paul and the Message of Jesus do not match...That is why there is a need for apologetics...to explain these differences... there is a whole course of instruction that teaches one how to justify inconsistancies of the bible Based on "religious doctrine" interpretation..and the arguments vary by which denomination one follows...
Yes there is a lot of confusion. But God knows the heart. God has ONE mind. Schools are disadvanaged in that they don't teach spiritual discernment and people go wrong picking at "words" God is not fooled by one's crying Lord, Lord if they don't do Lord, Lord.
Of course the schools teach teach through spiritual discernment - you do those schools a great disservice by insinuating that because their talks with God don't produce the same interpretation as yours do that they don't have spiritual discernment.
Them claiming to be christian defines them as such, No other definition is possible, The loosest definition would be a follower of the words of Jesus. That can mean anything including those who call themselves godless Christians who like the idea of love and peace spoken of by Jesus or attributed to him, and ignore the religious teachings.
Every christian I have ever spoken to has their own angle on the religion and in fact their own version of the religion, bar none. So if they say they are christian they are christian, what ever that means to them. There is not one Christianity, there are thousands of versions out there, one for every claimant.
I tend to agree.
I might argue about specific points, but the only time I've ever said someone wasn't a Christian was to prove a point with irony.
Mother Theresa- Christian.
Westboro Baptists- Christians
If I had to choose who was the best example of a Christian, I'll go with John Stewart and say Gandhi. He said Gandhi was so ***king Christian he was Hindu. I agree.
What specific trait is associated with blonds? I know a lot of people who say they are blond, although I don't consider them to be blond.
You can't fight preconceived notions. Especially ones that make people feel good about themselves.
Can't go with you on this one, Melissa.
The "religion" that was founded as being based on the teachings of Jesus includes murder, torture, slavery and other things unacceptable to modern people. Even if those are removed from the religion (and for the most part they are seldom seen today), the organized religion itself still contains much that is simply wrong in today's world. And finally, if we leave out the idea of the organized religion and leave it up to individuals to decide what Jesus taught we will have millions of different concepts of what Christian means. We see it all the time as Catholics, Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses or whatever other belief system does not agree with the speakers and those believers are not "real" Christians somehow.
So maybe a Christian is just anyone that believes a man named Jesus Christ walked this earth approximately 2000 years ago, was the son of God (or maybe God Himself - this is a little fuzzy) and taught people of the time how they should live and what was necessary to enter heaven one day. Perhaps the idea of Christ being crucified, being dead for several days and coming back to life should be included as it plays such a massive part in the myth.
Any specifics on what Jesus said or meant with his words are open to interpretation by every Christian; only the belief that Jesus was here and was a god is necessary to be a Christian.
Would Christians accept that definition? Doubtful, as one must believe as they do to be a "real" Christian but perhaps, with time...
Your statement is a little convoluted, making it sound as if the religion was based on these things. No matter what group you choose throughout time, they all have ppl within them doing wrong. Mankind does as he wills. Christianity itself is pure.
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
Does that mean that you view a "christian" as one that does deeds acceptable to you as charitable without regard to their belief in Jesus or God?
Problem is that Christianity is NOT "pure" no matter how you look at it. Every single Christian has a different idea of what it means to be Christian - it is as mixed and jumbled as humanity is.
Would it matter what the civilian thought the law was or would it matter what the judge thought the law was? To be a Christian means to be a follower of Christ... even without a dictionary, it would be hard to argue that much. It's in the name.
It is up to each believer to seek the truth, I would agree with that.
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.
A "follower of Christ". As one cannot literally follow Christ around the country, that leaves following his instructions/words as recorded in the bible. Unfortunately, those words mean different things to different people and Christians go off on their own personal path.
Which is why I said that only a belief in Christ as a God is necessary to be considered a Christian - not following interpretations which vary radically person to person.
The Bible says they will know we are Christians by our love. This might cause some Christians to think they should become a little "airy"... if you know what I mean. It causes others to pretend to be loving in public and act like the devil in private. Christians are human... they are not different in the trials they have to face than anyone else. Sometimes they will rise above and draw strength from their savior and love as they should. Sometimes they will fail. They will go thru times of great trial and suffering... they may even fall away, but it is ultimately God who is responsible for their salvation. On my own, I am not inherrantly good. Not at all. But reaching out to God and recognizing His answers to my prayer, I am able to truly love ppl in most circumstance. But never think you'll meet a perfect Christian... the only one ever was Christ.
Exactly, which is why you fail at emulating Christ.
Some days I don't fail... though I wouldn't expect you to know that. You'd have to be following me around and that would be... wrong.
Then there are exceedingly few Christians in the world. Or the bible is wrong (or at least the understanding of what "love" is).
As a usable definition of what a Christian is, it is a total failure.
Maybe you don't hang out with a lot of true Christians. I have met many and they are lovely ppl. I can always find something wrong with them if that makes you feel better... lol. But that's the point... Christians are sinners saved by grace. They're never gonna be perfect. No man is sinless save one.
There's a perfect example of Christianity and not Christ.
This is where I learned that.
For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God--
Exactly, thank you for making my point. Regurgitating those verses from the Bible is indeed Christianity.
Yes, I "regurgitate" biblical verses as a poet regurgitates poetry and a math student regurgitates theorems.
So by grace, not by how much love you show fellow man?
But elsewhere we find that all that is necessary is to believe - not grace, not love, just belief.
Rather inconsistent, the bible, don't you think? How can we take anything from there to form a definition of "Christian" when those words written by man give different answers to the same questions and people consistently cherry pick the answer they want to see?
I believe you have misunderstood.
We are saved BY His grace.
They will know we are Christians by our love.
The first is the means to salvation.
The second is an outward sign of salvation.
That is just Christianity. You still don't get it.
Understood. Being saved and the signs of that are not the same thing. Still, won't all "real" Christians be saved? So if you love (whatever interpretation is given to that term) then grace is automatic and the end result is that love = saving?
Kind of like saying that stepping off the roof won't break your leg; gravity will. If you get what I'm trying to say here.
There are many kinds of love. I agree.
Ppl love their children and spouses and causes... no doubt. Even to the point of sacrifice, but in the end it is not "love" that saves you. You could not even say belief in God is what saves you, b/c as the Bible says, 'even the demons believe and tremble at His name.'
Faith is given by God, it is His grace that saves and love is the outward sign of salvation. There are many aspects to salvation, but it comes down to His grace.
Like you, I find it interesting that many of us here who profess to be Christians, believe differently. My beliefs don't seem to fall in line with Kathryn, Melissa or Brenda's, for the most part. However, I seem to agree with much of what bBerean, Chris and PhoenixV profess. That doesn't mean we always agree, or that we agree with each other's styles of communication... or even that they necessarily see me as someone who views salvation as they do. But that doesn't mean any of us are saved... or aren't saved. Only God knows for sure who belong to Him. It is simply our job to seek and follow.
Understand and pretty much agree with all you've said outside of the specifics of what God wants (I'm not qualified to give an opinion there). It does not, however, address the question in the OP of "What defines a Christian?", except to once more say "Whatever I decide at the moment is the accepted definition for all people everywhere".
Well... the question is tricky isn't it? (Props to Melissa. lol)
It doesn't say, "How do you know for sure if someone is a Christian?"
It says, "What defines a Christian?"
It is tough though.
If you were to ask Stephen in the Bible, he would have to answer you while laying on the ground after being stoned for his faith.
You could ask Paul, but would you ask him while he was murdering Christians or after his "road to Damascus" experience when God revealed Himself to him?
You could ask the woman at the well, with 5 past husbands, having sex with a man she only lived with... but we don't know what her life looked like after Christ told her how valuable she was to God.
You could ask me before 2009, when my life fell apart and I stayed alive b/c I couldn't bear the thought of my children without a mother who loved them... or you could ask me in 2010, after alcohol and cybersex filled the void my husband's affairs left. Or you could ask me now... surviving and learning who I am to God again. Learning to apply the Bible to my life in a new way and trying to learn my value again.
It may depend on who you ask, but it may also depend on *when you ask. God reveals himself to those who seek Him... that's what it comes down to.
I have to take my kids to school now. P/T conf. day. God bless, Wilderness. (And you too ATM.)
Thank you - I do believe you have just made the very same point I did early on here. You don't believe as I do, you aren't a "true Christian". A 100% subjective evaluation of a person and their love - how they treat other people - should never be the deciding factor of whether one is Christian or not.
"We see it all the time as Catholics, Mormons, Jehovah Witnesses or whatever other belief system does not agree with the speakers and those believers are not "real" Christians somehow."
I personally do not know who a true Christian is. It is not up to me to decide b/c I can't see their heart, their past or future. So someone could be a murderer today, but on death row, they might accept Jesus as their savior and be forgiven on judgement day. Only God knows who are His true followers.
I like to laugh... a lot. I don't like to hurt ppl so I try to be careful when making jokes, but you never know who is going to take you seriously. Someone very solomn could look at me and think, 'Surely she is not a follower of Christ. She has no depth.' etc. But in fact Im very compassionate and tend to feel ppl's pain. I love to talk about serious things (as you can see by my repeated visits here) but I never leave my sense of humor far behind... all that to say, it would be easy for someone to judge me, but what ppl often forget about God is that He is a lover of all. It takes all kinds to make a world and a kingdom. He created us all and though He asks us to believe on His son, He never tells us to be clones of one another.
God will never ask us to do or be something that is in opposition to His word, but He does ask us to seek Him and love is the common thread.
Yet, the OP was how to tell a Christian. Here you maintain that love (without defining what is meant by that) is the common thread, elsewhere you quote the bible saying it is purely by grace and even then the bible also says it is purely by believing in Christ. (To be saved, that is, not specifically to be Christian although one could make the case that all "real" Christians would be saved).
Unfortunately, it seems that your answer to "What defines a Christian" is some fuzzy concept that changes constantly, isn't consistent with other Christians and that you cannot even clearly state yourself. Not unusual, and possibly why the OP started the thread - to see if there could be a consistent, acceptable definition of "Christian".
We don't really have a definition, we don't have a common concept of what makes a Christian, but I can't see your concept of the word being useful. It is far too personal, too subjective and too variable. Very few will agree with you, I fear.
I had a couple of reasons for posing this question and a couple of theories as to how it would play out. My main theory was that Christianity was going to end up being defined by the "Born Again" standards by both Christians and Atheists. I've read through the thread already and I'm dismayed but not surprised to find that as true.
Slowly, but surely, the definition of Christian is changing to exclude everybody who doesn't go by the fire and brimstone teachings of that ONE subgroup.
The side effect is unfortunately if you claim the title Christian, you are automatically assumed to go by the teachings of that denomination... even though many traditional Christians don't. As a matter of fact, the whole Born Again thing is relatively new to Christianity in general. Yet older, more established denominations are being ignored in the mix.
I personally find the whole "Born Again" thing to be bunk. The same with fire and brimstone.
The second point/theory I was making/test was that with all the arguing about Christians being this or that from BOTH sides on this forum, neither side has the slightest idea of what a Christian IS. I'm curious of how, with this vast gulf of ignorance, how anybody can attack any faith another based on the title. I also don't understand how anyone can defend an entire faith either.
Since nobody can really agree what it is... except by their own viewpoints or viewpoints of one denomination... it would stand to reason that all sweeping statements either way are stereotypical and innately bigoted.
*Blue emphasis to the above added by Beth
You realize that you have set yourself up as judge and jury, judging not only between the denominations, but between the beliefs of the believer and non-believer? You are giving just your opinion (in blue) just as others have given their opinion.
Some of us *do indeed agree, because we have found a common denominator (the Bible) to build a foundation on. That is not a statement to tear down *anyone who disagrees, simply to say that not everyone is loose-cannoning it. I put my belief wholly on the Bible as the inerrant word of God. I believe that Jesus is the son of God and that we must place our faith in him to have eternal life. Do you believe differently? That is your right and you have the right to share freely your beliefs as well. I feel good about that.
No, I didn't set myself up as judge and jury... I was pointing out that I believe it is bunk yet I am still a Christian. Therefore can that be used to define Christianity?
Yes some of you do agree and have found a denominator.... that's why denominations are called denominations. Other people of different denominations obviously don't agree...or they would be members of YOUR denomination.
I believe Jesus was the son of God in exactly the same way as I believe that we are all the children of God. I don't believe he was the actual biological, genetic son of God, no. My denomination, and several others don't believe that.
Otherwise, I have absolutely no idea where the hostility is coming from. Unless you truly believe that everyone with a different opinion isn't a Christian... in which case everything I said applies to you.
Ack! Hostility... Im sorry... I didn't mean to come across as hostile at all. It's terrible the way tone is not transferable. No, not hostile, I just meant you, like others have your beliefs and they are simply that... your beliefs. And I fully agree with you on the denominational thing. I highly doubt I share the same denomination with even the ppl whose beliefs I tend to agree with.
Sorry, but Melissa is doing no such thing, she amongst the other few here who try to emulate Christ don't judge others at all, that is the point. It is YOU and the others who follow the hate cult of Christianity that judge others.
Exactly. You don't build your foundations on Christ, you build it on the Bible.
And, that is part of the hypocrisy of Christians who say they follow the Bible, who say they believe it is the inerrant word of God, they cherry pick the Bible to suit their version of Christianity rather than getting the full meaning out of Christs teachings an "understanding" how He actually would have liked folks to behave.
Good morning ATM. I know that you would probably like it to bother me that you would consider some Christians and others not, but to be totally honest with you, you are probably the very last person on earth I would go to to ask their opinion on matters of faith... no disrespect, it just seems an obvious statement considering.
So post away! I'm just here for a while.
Notice you have nothing to say about the points I made? You obviously think they're true.
Is that what you say to yourself? "If she does not respond the way I want her to, she is in agreement." lol... Gotta go to work. Have a good day.
Cherry picking is what you and YOUR chosen ones do. "Take this; Oh! And strike that, it just does not make SENSE." All of it is necessary for rePROOF. It is cherry picking that troubles you. But it won't be recognized until you have faith to receive the spirit to guide your studies. The brain cannot fathom the father's will; it is too busy with the "worldly/selfy" desire.
Yet, another believer who follows Christianity but not Christ. He would teach you many things, that is, if you were actually willing to learn anything.
And, you have nothing to say to the points I made, you too, must think they're true.
See? You can't even recognize that your points were responded to. Without spirit you are handicapped in this conversation. You want to talk bible w/o the tools for proper discernment? ...won't fly.
Sorry, but since spirit has never been shown to exist, your statement is obviously nonsense. For Beth to have responded to the points made, she would have to utilize both reading comprehension skills and syntax, but as we both know, most Christians here have yet to even learn how to use a dictionary.
Brutal... the claims that you assert are so off-base. I know that I am capable of dictionary reading. I don't believe you make those claims with knowledge being at the top of your list of "things" to obtain. Of course we can read a dictionary and decipher how them words go. however, we have another ability in addition. Oh!!! Is THAT your issue? I know something you don't. Don't sweat it! It's yours! Just ask. Now since we all know that you have already decided that God is NOT what you want, "What the hell is your problem? oops wrong OP... LOL
Yes, I understand you believe your fantasies are something you think you know over and above others, but they are just fantasies, nonetheless.
Yes, I understand that presenting reality to you is viewed as fantasy, that is the point exactly.
Dear A Troubled Man: You might try accepting that others are entitled to their beliefs. It is an injustice to be so heartless to this young person when her intentions are good. You are not respectful, considerate, or the slightest, tiniest bit helpful. Shame on you.
good point. He should at least grow some compassion and learn to ACCEPT.
Actually, Christianity specifically repudiates murder, torture and human slavery.
This explains a lot.
See that's an issue I have... it really doesn't.
All those things can and have been done by Christianity. All those things have been opposed by Christianity as well.
Which again goes back to my point that there is no definition of what a Christian is except personal or maybe denominational definitions. So how can you defend a whole faith... when you can't even define it?
Of course it doesn't repudiate murder or torture. If it did we would not have abortion doctors or gays killed in god's name, yet both have happened several times in the last few years. One gay man near me was drug for a mile or so behind a car and tied to a barbed wire fence to die. Or were those killers not "real" Christians after all?
Of course Christians have bombed abortion clinics and of course they have killed gays, blacks, Muslims.... (you name it) in God's name.
The were absolutely Christians.
I'm not a big believer in pretending that someone in the same faith as me can't do bad things.
I will also say that they ABSOLUTELY did those things because they faithfully and religiously believed that was what their faith said to do. It was absolutely their very Christian beliefs that guided their hands.
No argument here.
I have seen things done by Christians so devout that they were literally incapacitated by it. There is no way on Earth that I could deny that they believed every single word of the Bible and were acting completely on their Christian faith when they did those terrible things.
On the other hand, I've seen people equally devout turn away from terrible things for the same reason. I personally know I did. I've told the story before, so I won't bore you with it.
So my response is yes, Christians can/have/will do horrible things because of their religion. They are Christians... we don't get to say that they aren't just because they do things that other Christians don't agree with... or else no one would be a Christian.
And yes, Christians have also can't/haven't/will not do horrible things because of their religion. Its hard to judge those numbers because "Christian Doesn't Blow Up Building" doesn't make headlines very often.
My point is" no matter what they believe. They are NOT doing it in the name of God. The spirit of God was shown by Jesus. He said bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you... also, love your enemy. Also do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Also, ye who is WITHOUT sin, cast the first stone. The "killing Christian" is not following Christ. They thought that thing out. Spirit was NOT employed. They know we are Christians by our love.
Melissa is correct, they were behaving that way because they followed Christianity, just like you do. That is why you behave the way you do as opposed to someone who actually tries to emulate Christ.
Of course the fact is that people can try to make religious books say whatever they want them to say. And as someone who tried to figure out whether Islam was truly a 'religion of peace' (in other words, from personal experience) someone who is only passingly familiar with the Bible, or the Koran, or the Bhagavad Gita, can assume that reading certain passages out of context absolutely confirms whatever they already think about it (such as that Christianity endorses slavery and genocide.) I've made my statement and I stand by it. If someone wants to debate verses, I'm all there, but blanket statements meant to be self-evident are bad debate, bad logic and bad history.
Now, having said that, even people who are very familiar with the Bible, or the Koran, or whatever, can have a difficult time and it's also true that many times the person's own bent seems to inform their opinion as much as a straight reading of the texts. I'm not at this point debating who is a 'real' Christian or not, because I think that a great many people who I generally don't agree with make great efforts to figure out what Jesus actually meant by different things He said and did. As these forums demonstrate, nothing is easier than to decree who makes the grade and who doesn't. And Jesus warned us about that.
Or, more precisely, the religious books say what they say based on the actual words written there.
Sorry Chris, you have already failed miserably to defend Christianity regarding slavery, murder and genocide. The words are there far all to see, so it would be you who is trying "to make religious books say whatever they want them to say."
Or, was it actually Christianity that warned us about that?
But, but, but...
I was actually responding to your quote:
"Actually, Christianity specifically repudiates murder, torture and human slavery."
Which is a blanket statement.
I'm not sure that Christianity can specifically repudiate anything. It's not organized enough to have a platform of any type. There are no set values that every single member agrees to. Christianity, as a whole, has no opinion... so it can't take a stand against anything.
So you can honestly say that Christianity has caused YOU to repudiate murder. You might even say that your specific church repudiates murder. But it would be a stretch to even say your denomination of Christianity repudiates murder because with very few exceptions denominations aren't organized enough to have a standard set of values/philosophies.
Now, with that being said, the issue I have with denying that Christianity can produce individuals who do horrible things in God's name is that it is excessively dangerous to deny that it CAN happen. Instead of looking for the warning signs that these people are becoming dangerous in their zealotness, you separate yourself from the zealot after the fact.
If, for instance, a parent reads Deuteronomy 21:18-21 and takes that verse literally. And his her elders also take that verse literally, then how can you claim that they were not true Christians? The were doing exactly what the Bible told them to do. The were following God's word to the letter.
Christ is the firstborn of Christians. He had specific instruction. Those who follow Christ follow HIS commands. There was no Christ in the OT. Only promises of his coming.
...goat blood everywhere
Following God to the letter requires spirit. Jesus has it.
You agree to the fact that there was no Christ in the OT? So you're admitting that the Old Testament was all blood and sacrifice and no prophecies of the coming messiah? What a moment of growth for you! Congratulations!
This actually goes back to what I just wrote to Melissa.
But, for the record (and ignoring your sarcasm)
I've said before that the sacrifices of the OT were necessary in order to show people (over the course of time) that people could never be made clean by them, but only by the once for all sacrifice of Jesus on the cross.
The OT has many, many, many prophecies of the coming Messiah and I've even quoted them and compared them in one of my hubs.
I haven't read enough to know that Cgenaea was saying what you said I agreed with, I was going with one specific statement. I should know better because there's another poster who I got into big arguments with later on after agreeing with what I thought she was saying early on.
And no, redefining the Bible is not a moment of growth for anyone.
This statement wasn't "English" enough for you either? You learneds sure are... read my post again.
I was teasing Chris. Because I respect him and consider him somewhat a friend. Sarcasm and jokes are apparently lost on you in your war against intelligence and learned minds (and Chris is one who actually had studied and learned biblical history and context fyi)
Touche. However, I was really thinking about a certain blue tinged person whose stuff I no longer read when I said that.
I understand your point and to a certain degree can get behind it. Where I was coming from, though, was Christianity as a philosophy, not as an organized religion. And those who've truly studied Jesus (and Paul and Peter and John and Jude and James) know that Christianity does repudiate slavery and murder. "Christianity" (for the sake of argument) may indeed have no opinion but Jesus, and Paul, and Peter and James and John and Jude, definitely did.
I agree, any belief system CAN produce individuals who do what most people consider horrible things, whether or not the system in and of itself promotes those same horrible things. And for the record, Christianity does not. Your point about Deuteronomy 21:18-21 (and I've discussed the applicability of OT verses to Jesus' teaching elsewhere) actually goes to illustrate what I said about people who don't know Scripture very well. Of course people will do it, and I would be slow to say they aren't 'real Christians' even though I don't think any REAL Christian would actually do that, since Jesus didn't tell us to do that. I also, apart from my personal loathing for George Tiller, do not condone having him shot down in cold blood and don't believe that God literally told that person to shoot him.
As for the 'following God's word to the letter,' I know this will seem like a No True Scotsman statement to some people, but which part of God's word? The part meant to apply specifically to Israelites five thousand years ago or the ones meant to apply to all followers of Christ for all time? I ask that as a way of pointing out that sometimes people aren't really doing what they think they're doing.
Even though it's written right there in the Bible, Chris will spin it out of control.
Or, the fact that it has happened, repeatedly, and continues to happen to this day.
Uh no, it is the religion itself that teaches and causes good people to do horrible things, that is the point.
Chris is in serious denial of facts.
And, you do.
But, that is the issue, there are so few that actually attempt to emulate Christ, but instead follow Christianity, the hate cult.
No, it doesn't seem like a No True Scotsman fallacy, it IS that fallacy.
You have said it yourself; learn some stuff! interpretation is important. The bible allows us to know how to think. When knowledge of God is most important to you; you receive the ability to discern. You re reading the bible with bias against it. That is what confounds you. You are severely mistaken in your Godly opinions and you refuse to learn of him. Jesus shows us God. KNOWLEDGE shows us ourselves. We just don't think like God on our own. The bible tells us that too. Refusing to receive is not the same as not being ABLE. If you do not want it, you will not be forced. The Lord could walk into your house and perform 2 miracles. In your line of thinking, you would call him David Spade. He cannot prove himself to the faithless.
Yes, you should. The Bible isn't the only book on the planet.
No, it doesn't.
You have no knowledge of any gods and completely lack any ability to discern fantasy from reality.
That is just silly. Reading words is reading words. Duh.
Sorry, but I'm not confounded.
You are severely mistaken about reality and your refuse to learn anything.
No, He doesn't.
You have very little knowledge of anything.
You just don't think. Period.
The Bible is often wrong.
But, we know that will most likely never happen because your God doesn't exist.
That is BS. God can prove Himself to us all, if He actually existed.
You sure take a lot of time and patience to respond to posts. You don't use much creativity though. You just "unsay" what I said. Cute And I think someone called you insightful. your opinions are acceptable to me. You are entitled to feel as you wish. God gave you that ability. ok no he didn't if you insist. Lol
I don't need creativity to respond to your posts as they are so very fantasy oriented, what is required for your posts is some grounding in reality. You need to actually start learning something about Christ as opposed to just regurgitating what others wrote in the Bible.
The Bible teaches good people to do bad things whereas Christ attempted to get people away from scriptural garbage and simply act like the humans we are, that is the one thing he understood about us, that we already possess the necessary attributes and traits for everyone to get along, we just need to use them.
No, it is obviously you who needs to learn about Jesus, that is what everyone is telling you, which includes other Christians who have learned about Jesus.
You mean the ones that agree with you "sometimes"???
There are those who attempt to emulate the man who was said to be Christ and there are those who speak from the religion formed over the centuries called Christianity, the religion that causes good people to do bad things, that teaches bigotry, intolerance and hatred. The amount of folks here regarding the former can be counted on one hand, while the rest speak from Christianity.
That is probably the first thing you have ever said that I, for the most part, agree with (I realize you count me in the latter group, but that's ok, I still agree with you.)
The part I disagree with is the part about the religion itself causing them to fail. As I said, the religion itself is pure... it is to be Christ-like. Where we (Christians) fail is when we allow our flesh to take the lead. Christ tells us to crucify our flesh and to let his spirit reign within us.
The religion was founded in the early first few centuries and included torture, murder, etc. as a way to enforce it's beliefs on the populace. This is "pure" and acceptable to you? Or has the religion grown with humanity to become what it is today?
Or is our disagreement just semantics on what "religion" means?
Whose teaching is acceptable concerning "religion"? God or man?
It being as man is doing the teaching, it had better be man.
While many claim god is teaching that is not so; preachers tell us how to live, the words of men 2 millenia ago and recorded in bible tell us, etc. So those teachings had better be acceptable to man.
And even if god is doing the teaching when it comes time to convert that teaching into actions, those actions are either acceptable to society in general or the student will rot behind bars. Murder of abortion doctors, for example, is not acceptable whether taught by man or God. Neither is torture or murder of gays or with holding medical treatment from children. Although people will claim God told them to do it, society will punish them for it.
I could hardly move on past your first sentence as that is where I disagree. It is God's word first, man's interpretation second. Then there's the whole issue of whether or not a man is lead by the spirit or flesh concerning interpretation.
As far as issues like murdering abortion doc's etc. It always goes back to God's word... and God's word on a whole, not dissected into to verses that can be twisted to support an argument. As soon as you are in violation of God's word, you are no longer following God... as in the examples you provided. At that point, you are no longer discussing actual biblical Christianity, you are now discussing men using God's name to do their own will. This is a common occurrence with any authority from Kings to judges to police officers. Anyone with any affiliation can use the name of someone in authority, but if their actions don't reflect the desires of the person in authority, it is nothing but a lie.
As god's words are subject to interpretation by man, it is thus man that is doing the teaching. Whether men 2,000 years dead or the preacher telling you what god wants. Now, you can claim God will tell you what He means, but that is worthless as God tells everyone something different.
Beth, while you know better, you have fallen into that enormous trap that only you know what God wants - that everyone else either listens to what you have to say or they aren't Christian. Which is what I said in the very first post in this thread; either get the interpretative values out of the definition or it is of no value as every person will have a different definition.
Huh... thank you for revealing a part of myself to me that I was not aware of. Is it ok if I disagree... cause I kinda do.
Sorry if that offends you, but you are in very good company here. Or at least have a lot of it.
Your own posts here, talking of "real" Christians as opposed to those that profess Christianity but are not "real" is a strong indication. That you are only too happy to pop out with quotations and your personal interpretation is another. Other interpretations are obviously wrong and should be ignored, right? And indeed, one can often tell a "real" Christian by their interpretations and how they follow what you think the bible says...
Well that's an interesting point Wilderness. Yes, I s'pose in my own mind I might identify ppl as mature Christians or young Christians, or weak Christians, or backslidden Christians, or true Christians (meaning ppl who are totally surrendered). So yes, you are right in that respect... I think there is always some amount of judgement going on in our minds. However, the part of me that is analytic reminds me that I am not qualified or necessarily apt in making those judgments... that only God can know a person's heart, so I must be careful.
It's very interesting, in that we do have to use discernment... like we would if our daughters brought a boy home. We wouldn't want to judge him, but at the same time, it is a responsibility to keep our kids safe... so there is a fine line we are always walking. I think what it comes down to... for me anyway... is thinking you are better than anyone else. I think we're all the same. I am the same as the murderer b/c I have hated, and I am the same as the pervert, cause I have been perverted and I am the same as a liar, cause I have lied. So should I discern? I believe so, but should I judge? I am not qualified.
No, where you Christians fail is when you follow Christianity. Those who are in that category do not know Christ, they only know Christianity.
Whom do you know who emulates Christ? - you have met and know someone?? I am very surprised by this admission! So, even if the story of Jesus is unbelievable to you, you like the main character's attributes?
I would say Mo, Deepes and Melissa are the only ones here who I would place in that category, the rest of the Christians here follow the hate cult that is Christianity and it is usually those who call these folks non-Christians, yet they are the ones who mostly try to emulate Christ.
I would apologize to those who I may have missed in that former category.
To emulate Christ is to do as he did. How many times did Jesus tell you that what was "written" is not trustworthy??? We as humans tend to agree with those who agree with us. Hmmm... Mo, Deepes, and Melissa... a VERY telling statement ATM.
Which is pretty much the opposite of you do.
Your "spiritual glasses" are foggy. example please...
Do you have possessions? Are you an itinerant preacher? Have you destroyed temple gates? Do you do miracles? Have you healed people? Do you hold open air "church" services, preaching to hundreds or thousands? Do you go town to town preaching? Have you given away everything you own?
No? Then you aren't emulating very well, are you? More like following what you perceive as instructions from Him. Or does "emulate" mean to pick those actions/characteristics you find easy and useful and do just those?
See your spirit is... ok, listen. God gave Job a lot of stuff. Do you think he was not a follower of God because of his worldly possessions??? Jesus knew what that word MEANT. And as for your questions; I am as poor as sandcastles. but that is not what makes me a "true" follower. God does not require us to have nothin (as I) He just requires that not even material comfort come BEFORE him.
The term cherry pick is too loosely thrown around. Doing as Jesus is more spiritual in nature. We do not always do as we should. All humans falter there. God looks at the heart (intent/will/motivation).
Got it! (I think, anyway)
"To emulate Christ is to do as he did." actually means to choose those "spiritual" characteristics you find right (never having read His mind or even spoken with Him) and declare that those same characteristics are yours. That you will try to let those things control how you behave. If your intent or motivation is pure, the actions won't matter.
Kind of what I said, isn't it? Cherry pick which things Jesus did that you like and behave accordingly? That "spiritual" is suddenly insterted into "To emulate Christ is to do as he did." doesn't indicate general acceptance of His actions; it indicates cherry picking which ones you will emulate.
Its a free country. I didn't know emulate was such a strict word. Maybe it is, but free will and ability come into play here. So what 's wrong with cherry-picking...?
Not a thing wrong with it. It allows one to design their own religion without real regard to what God wants or demands - a good thing as it keeps people happy and productive.
As an aside, I have a different view of cherry-picking. I'm completely cool with it, for a couple of reasons...
1. Not everything in the Bible pertains to me. I don't really need to worry about what the Bible says about adultery, for example, because I'm pretty faithful to my hubby and pretty apt to stay that way. No Bible required. I do read a lot about forgiveness in the Bible though, because that's something I struggle with. The evolution/creationism question doesn't really bother me because I don't need a belief one way or the other. I simply don't care enough to need to verify either way.
2. My faith/denomination encourages me to find inspiration in all religious sources. So cherry-picking for me is very affirming. If the Bible, Quaraan, Torah, scientific textbooks, Hindu texts and Pagan teachings etc all say the same thing (It happens more than you would think) then I can easily accept it as a personal truth (not to be confused with a fact)
3. Everybody cherry-picks, even the non-religious. I don't know anybody that reads and believes every single article of writing in the world. We learn/read/believe things that are important to us personally. We cherry pick newspapers, magazines, college courses etc. That's just how humans work. No one is going to research things that don't matter to them without an external motivation.
Cherry picking is your "baby" you want the entire kingdom to fit into YOUR box. You do not hear "lean not unto your own understanding." Your argument confuses you. Your actions do matter.
I don't want or expect the kingdom to do anything, let along fit MY expectations. I used your words to attempt an understanding. As I obviously failed, it seems clear that you did not mean what the words "To emulate Christ is to do as he did." actually say. Sorry about that...
Cherry picking is your "baby" you want the entire kingdom to fit into YOUR box. You do not hear "lean not unto your own understanding." Your argument confuses you. Your actions do matter. They show what you believe for the most part. God knows who means yes to his will.
"VERY telling statement " of what exactly??
How kind of you to apologize to me! Uh no, my intuition tells me you aren't.
Beth... Beautiful!!! Simply marvelous!!! I am so happy to have had the privelege of reading each and every one of your posts here! I see your "light". I have no idea what denomination you are. And I have NO IDEA what "kind" I am either; but you are speaking my language!!! (so to speak )
...just like Jesus.
The bible is the common thread in my OPINION as well. I absolutely loved the part about the spirit's interpretation as opposed to the fleshy interpretation.
Having read through the thread, I think you missed ATM's point. Those who follow the example of Christ are what the definition originally meant. The religion that has built up is completely removed from what the term implies. And, rightly so. Religion has put him on a pedestal. On display. God incarnate. So far above humanity that his example means nothing because we are so far beneath him that we can only beg his mercy. A pity. Because, if he was God incarnate, his whole adult life was spent hanging out with the common man. On our level. Why? I think, simply to lead by example. To make his words secondary to his works. It was only through his works that his words were deemed worthy of memory.But if he was God even his example wasn't good enough. Humanity jumped straight in to find a way to go back to religion. So many sit around attempting to find something else that God meant because whatever they believe he did while he was here wasn't quite their cup of tea.
Christian, or little Christ as the name means, was simply people attempting to walk in his footsteps before any of what you claim the Bible was put together. That Book pulls you away from the meaning of the word. It gives you excuses to ignore the meaning of the word.
It's funny that those on the outside respect the example of Christ more than those on the inside do.
Actually, I can broadly sweep most of the Christian community by their defense of their religion. By the references they go to in their Bible is support of their beliefs and by their actions
I would agree that I can't know who outside of Christianity respects the example if Christ.
If that is how you judge, it's your prerogative.
I'm not sure labeling it judging is fair. I attempt to look at what someone considers to be one and one, and what their take on two is. And compare it to the values I place on the same conditions. But, even though I'm not happy about the term, it is judgment.
I simply hate to see the name of a man whose example was so impressive be used in the manner it is. Religion seems to think he was special, yet we keep seeing a 'yes, but' argument. I can't seem to fathom how anyone can believe God exists, God chose to walk among us, God did a whole lot of to shit as example for us since everything written had been perverted in practice; and then turn around and use the perverted interpretations and write more contradictory crap behind him.
According to religion, the whole visit was superfluous.
The religion was founded in the early first few centuries
Me According to scripture ( IMO) this much is true, The religion was founded in the early first few centuries! There were no "true" Christians until after Christ died. He had his disciples that followed him around everywhere he taught, but I'm not sure many of them truly believed he was "THE" Messiah. They hoped that he was (?) but did they truly believe?
According to scripture, It was only after they saw him after the crucifixion that they were convinced.These believers didn't kill anyone.
For 100 years the Jewish people went through a tribulation such that would never happen again.
They were being tortured and killed in ways and numbers far exceeding the of the Holocaust. It was only after "The Government" established "The Universal church" (326 AD) that Christianity became the oppressors when it was officially declared to be the only acceptable religion for the Roman Empire. And even then, it was the political aspects of the religion which wanted to conquer the whole planet. The common people just wanted to eat. They did what it took, they followed orders from those in charge, in order to eat.
A few hundred years passed before another institution, similar to the first, rose to power that was friendly to the first.
In the beginning Islam was very tolerant to Jewish believers and Christians.
BUT ... politics enters into the game, and we had the crusades.
In many ways they have never ceased, though they have subsided.
Isn't this what was prophesied in Rev. 13? (almost 240 years before it began)
In addition; God did not expect his words to be remembered or quoted correctly by Moses. He gave him a WRITTEN report. He also allows his spirit to abide within the faithful to assist with proper discernment. As was already stated, we need the spirit of God to properly interpret his written words. Flesh has a different desire than God has. One must be on HIS path of truth. None of us possess a true path to God within ourselves. It takes spirit which ALL who truly follow by faith possess.
So after 6 pages, we've got a general definition of "A Christian has something to do with Christ."
And the more specific definition of "A Christian is someone who thinks exactly like I do" from some and "A Christian is someone who doesn't think like you" from others.
Everyone is arguing specific points of theory. Are those specific points deal breakers? In essence is everyone that disagrees on those specific points in any way, shape, or form no longer a Christian?
Because just from the representation here, it seems to be a case of everyone has their own view...
So is only one person in the entire world a Christian? That should make St. Peter's job pretty easy... although Hell is going to be nothing but asses and elbows.
The "way" is narrow. Only a few find it.
...asses and elbows it will be...
We all know what it truly knows what it means to be a Christian...However, since many of us don't wish to live that way, we bend the "rules" to meet how we wish to live and call ourselves Christian and all others are wrong, because if they are not wrong, then we are not Christian...And as Christians we live in fear of the Hell that we have created as punishment for not living as we should...
LOL...It is a real place...Our english word Hell is just a form of the Hebrew and Greek words used for Death and/or the Grave....And since we all die, sooner or later...we are all going to hell...LOL
Leaving it is an acceptable option. We are not forced to DO it.
Yes, God is beyond intellectual comprehension. We are lucky to have Miss C who is so full of faith. Thank You, Miss C for sharing and attempting to inspire others in the belief of God. "Knock and the door will be opened." Knocking with faith does the trick.
Learned a lot From Miss C.
To God be the glory. Tears (you ALWAYS sting my eyes ) thanks. But I cannot take the credit. I am an empty broken vessel. God is a whiz at using broken pieces. I love his style. You shine just like him
I know you know I speak to yer Soul and not yer Ego. I keyboard to educate others, but my aim is to inspire and encourage.
Just workin' for Mr. Triple O. (see above.)
Ah yes, I thought I heard the sound of knuckles dragging and banjo's picking.
Listen very carefully: Christians do NOT kill, torture, maim, rape, or ANYTHING of the sort in the name of God. That is NOT the nature of God. Old Testament... pesterment... His nature is love. He hates sin because of it. He punishes sin. HE punishes. He...
Wow! An interesting, and revealing, discussion to be sure! Having just finished reading through the thread, I'm going to toss out a few thoughts.
Labels are so, so, so, so messy! My daughter has one Caucasian parent and one African-American parent. Is she white or black? My husband was raised in the Southern Baptist church. My chosen denomination is Catholicism. Which of us isn't a "real" Christian, since the doctrines of our respective churches' are often diametrically opposed? We have identical beliefs about Jesus, he and I, but completely different views of communion, baptism, confession, etc. I don't talk to folks about Jesus unless they ask. Does that mean I don't evangelize, and if I don't, does that mean my faith is phony?
I know folks who are Jewish - members of God's chosen race - and don't believe in God at all. So, is Judaism a racial or a religious identification? I know Christians who are both devout and gay. So, which is it? Are they not "real" Christians, or not "really" gay? Pagan naturalists who don't recycle? Are they not really nature lovers?
THIS is what makes defining and labeling such a huge PITA!
To ATM, thank you for sharing your opinion that I try to emulate Christ. I do try to the absolute best of my ability. To those who scoff a bit and imply that you feel that way because I, and the others you mentioned, ''agree'' with you, I might suggest they get to know us a little better...lol I disagree with ATM - often - but I like him and respect that he often makes astute observations about human behavior and about the faith that I espouse. Melissa and Deepes and I don't always agree with ATM OR with each other even. Oddly enough, we've still found a way to enjoy each other and our discussions. We also don't always agree with other believers. We generally find ourselves castigated and judged by extremists from all sides - Christians, Muslims, Atheists, Agnostics, etc.
I can only speak for myself here, but at the end of the day, I'm at peace with myself and my God, and what others who don't know and love me think or say of me isn't something I spend a lot of time worried about.
It's nowhere near impossible to define a Christian, but it's certainly impossible to agree on any one definition. To more fundamental, evangelical Christians, I'm headed straight to hell because I'm Catholic and I was baptized when I was three months old, and not as an adult. And they didn't dunk me, they poured water from a pitcher onto my head. Still others call me lukewarm and wishy-washy because I don't talk to anyone about Jesus unless they ask me about him. Oddly enough, I've often seen more Christlike behavior from my unbelieving brothers and sisters than from my family in faith.
There's so much I could say on this subject because it's so near and dear to me, but I'm working on blowing up the internet with the length of this forum post, and I want to leave some room for the rest of you to continue the conversation.
*I want to add something - I'm also in fellowship with other believers who truly WALK their faith. They are charitable, kind, compassionate, loving, and wonderful. They give without expectation of return and love without judgment. It is these people who keep me from being ashamed to call myself a Christian. Sadly, they're the ones no one ever mentions. WHY? Because they're too busy living their faith to defend it or argue about it.
The bible is the common factor. We learn all about Jesus, his sacrifice, his commands and his mannerisms in the holy bible. If you feel that the information contained therein is fallacious, where then do you go??? Secondly, those who do read the bible and realize that we still kill the sinner is WRONG... it is written that the Christian's example (Christ) killed no one and admonished that even those who persecute you are to receive your prayer. Also, according to the bible, not everyone who calls themselves Christians makes the cut. It takes the killing of "self" and a desire to do the will of God. I cannot call myself a car because I stand in the garage. The bible teaches us how to properly become folloers of Christ. And the bible tells us that we can never be perfect in it. The heart is considered by God. He knows who means to follow and he knows who is just trying to be "fashionable" our instruction comes biblically. The Lord says, "learn of me." How may we do that without biblical text? The understanding of it is spiritual. The bible says, "Lean not unto your own understanding; in all thy ways, acknowledge him, and he will direct thy path." Jesus is the ONLY example of how to live the life that God desires. A big problem we all have is that we fail to follow. We prefer to lead.what we want (our desire) usually runs parallel to what God wants.
That is why you follow the hate cult that is Christianity, you do not actually follow Christ. Big difference.
Everything you write here is all about Christianity and the Bible, and nothing about Christ himself. You don't know Christ, if you did, you would discard the Bible in the trash and start living as He would have liked you to live.
I think her ethnicity is defined as bi-racial (if I'm currently up to date on my racial terms), but her race is human.
Doesn't matter how you were raised. What matters is what you believe.. Besides, whether you are a "real" Christian or not will be figured out when you get face to face with God
You don't evangelize, and your faith is not phony. But that's a different story
You said a mouthful here.. I think the key thing here is that even though we don't always agree on stuff, we're not here hurling insults at one another, condemning one another anywhere, nor blatantly picking fights with one another. We respect one another's beliefs (or lack thereof, in ATM's case) and can move on with no hard feelings. Last time I checked, Christ did not condemn those who disliked what he had to say (Thinking about his rejection at Nazareth where he helped who he could then went on his way). He didn't even condemn those who turned him over to be crucified ("Forgive them, Father. They know not what they do"). IJS
Which is interesting in itself because... You know what, nevermind.. Not relevant
In addition... the bible says that there is no "in between" category. You are for or against. He pukes lukewarm. There is no mistake about sin. We all know what they are. Sin is sin. From white lies to murder. It is all death to spirit. But we ALL do it. The difference between the yeas and nays is spirit. "God just gon hafta deal with me like this cuz he made me like this (sinful)" is UNacceptable. Taking in the spirit of God is the ONLY way to be acceptable to him. His spirit makes you sorrowful for sin. He can change the habits of a repentant heart. A humble spirit is key. No big I's or little "you's" ATM I AM NO BETTER. Whew!!! Maybe you will hear MY story one day. But I make sense out of the scripture, "He who is forgiven much; loves much." or something like that.
That is why we don't follow the Bible because it is teaching people to act exactly like despots, you are either for or against. That is not what Christ teaches.
Again, that is the hate cult called Christianity speaking, that is not what Christ would say or do. You need to unlearn what you have learned and start looking at the bigger picture.
The BIBLE shows the error in thought word and deed. I aint speaking my opinion. I am mostly quoting scripture. The bible is judge. It is written. It is not written for just me; It is written for my brother too. When one does not believe it, and they keep hearing it; seems like they should walk away. I would not join a conversation about Elvis sightings. Especially not to post to the conversants that they are delusional. It is funny to watch. I know scripture cuts. Is that why you did not read your first paragraphas you typed it?
Apparently, you did not read it either.. Just as you can quote scripture of what the bible shows the error in thought word and deed, your brother can also pull scripture that can justify their actions.. Since both of you are quoting scripture (which is God's word) which of you is correct?
I read my first paragraph, did you? or if you did, did you really understand it? or did you just judge it to be wrong (as you so often love to do)? I was asking a simple question as well as making an observation as to how dangerous it can be for you to come along speaking about God's will when your brother is also acting in God's will
You may not use OT sin-pymt scripture to justify wrongdoing. You cannot marry 700 wives. You may not steal, kill, idolize, lie, etc. You may not stone your sister for sneaking her boyfriend in her bedroom window. It is WRITTEN. plain as day. Jesus told us what to do. Now if I decided that darn Jesus was too soft and I wanna grab some stones, Im WRONG. If someone tells me and I refuse to hear. I am at fault. And I have consequences to deal with .
Of course.. We are in agreement here.. But this is not the only area where there may be issues with you seeing something as wrong where another sees it as right.. Even look at the OT.. You quoted "treat others as you want to be treated", yet you accuse me and others of bending to get along when we treat the atheists here with the respect we want ourselves while you pull different scriptures that allow you to justify your own behavior as "giving it straight" and pointing out their evil ways. And for the principles that you fall short on, you and others fall back on the Christian insanity plea "I'm a sinner, this is why I need Christ" Instead of taking responsibility for that sin and striving not to repeat the behavior
Treating others as I would want to be treated is my "thing" so please, if I one time utter the words that God is imaginary and only for the delusional, please give me scripture that combats that thinking. The word of the Lord is paramount to me; not ME. I am not on trial here. The word of the Lord is. We will stand firmly planted on that; or not. Respect to evil? Consider that. Jesus did not have one who stated, "your God is imaginary." When he spoke the word of God, he was firm in it. Thou hypocrite was spoken often to the ones who interpreted the words of God incorrectly. Now totally dismissing the word of God, I don't remember reading. God's word stands forever. I remember that.
Exactly why I used it.. But it is obvious that it totally missed you. SO on that note, it is obvious that we both have our truths about what is in the bible. All I was doing was reminding you to make sure you were flawless before trying to point out anyone elses flaws. But apparently this concept doesn't apply to you since you are so far above everyone else that you can point out others faults but refuse to look in the same mirror
Again; I am not on trial here. It is the word of God that is being picked at. I cannot be flawless in light of scripture; the scripture tells me that. I am not giving my opinion, I stand behind biblical text; yes, it hides me I cannot be held accountable for biblical text. They are not my words. Truth stands.
Jesus also showed us what to do as far as treating others with love and respect.. This is what some of us here do, yet you and some of the others accuse us of bending, ear tickling, and (my personal favorite) watering down the bible in an effort to be liked. I don't know how many of the others here "like" me nor am i really concerned about that. I do want to be respected even in disagreement. I respect quite a few people here that I personally do not care for. But I still show them the same respect they show me (and in come cases still more)
God is no respecter of persons. His word stands forever. We get with that or we do not. No in between. Respect for God is important; or not. Hmmm respect God or man...uh I guess you know where I stand. And I know where you stand. Jesus did not kindly whip the wrong doing in the temple. That would not have been Godly.
Christ was a respecter of people, Christianity is not. You can either follow Christ or follow Christianity, but don't make the mistake that they are one and the same.
Yes, I understand you believe this is a joke. That is why you don't understand, because you follow the hate cult of Christianity and not Christ himself. That is the real joke.
On the contrary, you have proven and shown that you know and understand nothing about me, yet still claim more truth than I do about God (which you said yourself before you don't even know or understand his mind).. They hypocrisy is so funny.. your words are hot but your actions are cold. And you have the nerve to call anyone else tepid?? There is nothing further for us to discuss.. I know you stand on the side that Christ spoke against as well.. The prideful ones that claim moral and spiritual superiority over others. But that sin of pride is every bit as evil as that which you accuse others of.. As such, you are the same in God's eyes
You have failed to recognize my humility in light of the words that I speak that are in the bible. I am not the one I elevate in these conversations. I am a sinner too. But I recognize truth and stick with it. I can't waver because scripture slaps my face at times. It is all good. I agree with God. He has ONE voice. "Learn of me"' is a directive. Where must we learn? The "faulty" bible???
I know there would be a "but" half way through that post followed by an I am right and you are wrong. Glad you didn't disappoint.
You started by saying he has failed, followed by look how humble you are and then a but... I am right because the bible says so.
Pride? It goes before destruction. I am sure that statement is correct. Pride works against God. What you see as pride is actually scripture. I stand firmly on it. When I am wrong I stand corrected. But I have seen no correction for the bible in this conversation. The bible is right. You quote it. You know. I have not boasted about Genaea. I simply quote scripture and point out errs concerning the understanding of it. My directive. Now if it is your directive to soothe the heart of the unrepentant unbeliever; you are doing a fine job.
Is that what you actually believe Christ was trying to teach people? No wonder you don't understand Him.
The Bible is not the judge, that is not what Christ taught. You are only following the hate cult of Christianity, you are not following Christ. The Bible is Christianity and Christianity is a hate cult.
Care to elaborate? Yes, I agree with some of ATM's points, but not all of them.. I agree with a lot that you say, but not all.. So is that telling as well?? Or is it merely the concept that a Christian can agree, have good conversations, and get along with someone who has a different belief (or lack thereof)?
I'm trying to get a clear understanding of what exactly you are saying regarding what is "Very telling"
He stated that three people actually exhibited Christ-like behavior. The three he named seem to be of the opinion that some of the bible is falsified information and not trustworthy in some cases. But what could he know about Christ? He does not believe in any of it and biblically, that is almost as detrimental as half believing it. Agreement. We tend to side with those who agree with us. He picked the three Christians he "liked" best... consider that.
Jesus was not "politically correct". The people hated him because he gave them truth they were not ready for/ did not want. I can expect no different. I think the bible says that you are blessed when people hate you for his namesake (or something like that) I forget what it says about those who "bend" to "get along"
Unless I misunderstood the question, let me remind you of the question that you asked ATM in the same post that prompted this discussion
So was this a sarcastic and rhetorical question that you asked earlier? Because if this was a valid question (which it is because Christ did mention somethings about what is "written" is not trustworthy), then why would this be an issue? Obviously, you don't follow all of the bible as well, so what does this say for you? It says that either you have not read all of the bible, or it says that you also discard scriptures in favor of what you want to do when it suits you. Let me use another quote of yours from an earlier response to this thread (page 10 to be exact) and show you how you don't follow them
"Bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you.. Love your enemy""
Looking back at some of your posts to ATM, Rad Man, Melissa, Me, Mo, (the list goes on).. Your very words to each of us contradicts these scriptures as there is little to nothing even reflecting the love of Christ in your speech
"Do unto others..." Well, you might actually follow those considering that you have been getting back exactly what you have given to others. You have been condescending and attacking to others in your posts yet call others evil when you feel that they are attacking you.
"Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".. Let's see.. considering all of the stones you have been throwing at others, either you are without sin , Which would make you Christ (who is the only one without sin), or a hypocrite considering this statement
If you are a broken vessel, then you are not perfectly sinless.. Which means you don't even follow what you supposedly "believe" or don't trust in it enough to follow it "in come cases"
He also picked the three Christians that treat him with the respect that they want themselves. Unlike those Christians who demand to be respected for their beliefs yet disrespect him often.. consider that
But he still treated them with respect when he did it. He also did not tall anyone names or beat them over the head with his words. When they were not accepted, he shook the dust from his sandals and moved on to the next thing. He did not stand there and keep hurling insults... Do you emulate that behavior??
Once again, here you are implying that we "bend" to "get along", which is a judgmental statement (Which goes against Matthew 7:1-5) Yet another example of you not following the Word. I can show you biblically where the actions of myself, mo, and Melissa line up with the bible when it comes to our treatment of ATM and the other nonbelievers here regardless of how they speak to us.. It's all over the new testament.
Ok, feeling. That's good. I have no doubt that all of my posts are acceptable. When we have gone back and forth from the utterly silly to the very close to blasphemous my words are warranted. Truth out-trumps feelings. Unless you forgot, Jesus actually whipped a few people for changing the purpose of the house of God. No, I am not God. I can't be. But, again you have "judged" my actions and "thown stones" sorry to have hurt you. Truth stands. A scripture that says by Jesus that it (scripture) is not trustworthy is funny. But you failed (with all your quotes and citing of scripture) to cite. I definitely missed that word from Jesus. But I do understand your obvious anger toward me. Popularity seems to be important to you. You should have MANY "points" now. And you may even feel better about your agreement with your clan. Truth stands. It is written and will not pass away. Even if it convicts. (Which is supposedly what happens every now and then.) Laying down to wishawash to be liked is dangerous. (That is written too) is that the part you deem unfit???
It is perfectly ok to call it as you see it as well. But your bias is showing. Jesus told the truth. Hurling insults is NOT what I do. But being constantly attacked for "complete faith" is what I get. That attack is always met with firm truth. I'm sure it causesva few bruises.
I am clear because the word of the bible is used to do the whipping (that is exactly how it works) I have thrown no stones; but scripture. Yes, I know you were cut a time or two. Please give me an example of a stone toss and I will point out its verse and chapter. The posters here can get brutal. They make completely false statements about God, scripture, and me. I simply allow the evil's velocity to bounce off me, and yes there is usually harsh consequence to the insult hurler. I am not contending with those who want God. We are handling poisonous material. Biblically. Bless them that curse you is different from the battle with evil forces that blaspheme and disrespect the father. I can handle everything that is said about me. it worries me not. But I am glad that at least this is not your brand of quarrelsome, I cannot handle the argument with a "Christian" it becomes a petty war over words which breaks one denomination from another because as we know God's children are divided enough already.
To me, all of scripture is needed for reproof. Please do not neglect the word of Jesus that stated that some of it is tainted or untrustworthy. I need that.
Here are three examples here of judgement you have shown me... At no point have I shown you any anger at all. If you misinterpreted anything I've said as me being angry, I'm sorry, but that's a misinterpretation (Which can happen when you are reading words)
As far as popularity being important to me. You have no idea of what is important to me other than my belief in Christ and the Father. I try to emulate the example of Christ. That people have received it well is only a bonus (just like Christ gaining followers while he was doing his work was a side of him living a life helping others)
I hold no bias toward you at all. Nor anyone else. I understand the difference and respect the differences of belief even in disagreement of application. you did not cut me with the bible.. I believe the bible..
Here in itself are three examples of you giving a judgmental opinion of me with no understanding of me and my beliefs. Same as you have done with others
"Cherry picking is your "baby" you want the entire kingdom to fit into YOUR box. You do not hear "lean not unto your own understanding." Your argument confuses you."
"smile he really likes words"
"Seems as if you do a bit of fantasy as well"
"You sit on the seat of judgment very often. Are you looking to be God?"
"You re reading the bible with bias against it. That is what confounds you. You are severely mistaken in your Godly opinions and you refuse to learn of him"
"The Lord could walk into your house and perform 2 miracles. In your line of thinking, you would call him David Spade. "
"You sure take a lot of time and patience to respond to posts. You don't use much creativity though. "
"The three he named seem to be of the opinion that some of the bible is falsified information and not trustworthy in some cases."
"He picked the three Christians he "liked" best... consider that."
(This one was particularly funny to me... )
" And you may even feel better about your agreement with your clan."
I'm gonna stop here... only because I generally ignore her posts and actually reading them in detail is making me want to be an atheist to avoid guilt by association.
You call that judgment? That was opinion. I am not judgmental.
Yes, the Bible is falsified information, it was not written by Christ, it was written by other men well after Christ was gone. The three I named are folks here who also understand this and realize that whatever is written in the Bible cannot be taken as truth. They also understand that being a Christian does not mean following the Bible, that it actually means to follow Christ in how He behaved, in who and what He respected, in what He understood about human nature, that we all possess traits for how to get along with one another, but we just have to use them rather than turn to scriptures for advice. That is what he taught.
Obviously, I know and understand a great deal more about Christ than many of the so-called Christians here, who only regurgitate verses from the Bible rather than understand what Christ was trying to teach people.
Exactly, you side with those who also regurgitate the Bible and who don't actually understand Christ, that is entirely the problem.
No, I didn't. I picked the three Christians who understand Christ and understand that Christianity teaches good people to do bad things, that is why they don't follow it like you do. They may not ever admit Christianity is a hate cult, but in their minds, they know it to be true based on how so many others who follow it and how they behave as a result.
Again, try to get away from what the Bible is saying and try to figure out what Christ was saying. You might actually learn something and begin to garner some respect for a change.
Oh, Cgenaea, I do wish you would refrain from making statements about those of us you don't know. You have absolutely NO idea what I believe about the Bible. I have never - here or anywhere else - flatly stated or remotely implied that any of the Bible is ''falsified." If you'd like to comment on what I think, say, or believe - then ask me so you aren't just pulling your own assumptions out of thin air.
I don't think it's thin air she is pulling them from.
As her religious philosophy seems to be that she is the only true Christian... she must make assumptions.
After all, it is burdensome, even for one who considers themselves God, to know the actual philosophies of those that are evil... which seems to be everyone but her.
I'm sure she's basking in the adorement of all those beneath her, however. Her posts are so frequent and long that it seems unlikely that there is much more time to do anything BUT bask in said adorement.
I wish that I had that amount of free time, alas being evil has me so busy that I think I'll have to settle for basking in the adorement of those in my real, horribly ungodly, life.
I have PLENTY of time... The Lord made it so. I am grateful to be able to be free and available. You are not correctly seeing me and what I do. You see scripture. That is where your problem lies. You attribute my words to me because scripture shows us our state. That is unsettling for some. And since I'm the one pointing out scripture it is assumed ti be my words. I say often, it's not what I say, it's not about me; scripture. My start with you; my end... scripture. That is the place that tells me all about Christ. By the way, what tells you about Christ?
So you admit to be unwilling to think for yourself? Tell me what do you do when you are confronted with conflicting biblical information?
You haven't been listening.. There is no conflicting biblical information.. She knows and follows all of the bible and is allowed to tell us how wrong we are as long as she backs it up with scripture but we cannot tell her where she is wrong and use scripture because whatever scripture you and the other atheists are dismissed because you lack the spirit to understand and whatever scripture another Christian brings up doesn't apply to her because it was talking about someone else.. I do wish you would pay attention
Ah yes, the mental disorder we lack, I forgot about that.
No.. Spirit is not a mental disorder. But at the same time, you must remember that even some of the most vocal atheists were once the most devout Christians so at one point the spirit did show them some things of God. So for you to say they do not know is disingenuous (at best)
But remember what happens when you turn away?
Yes, you go your own way for a while, but the father still has a place waiting for you (the prodigal son comes to mind).
Not seven more demons worse than the first??? The Lord is ALWAYS available to those who choose his way. But he does not compromise. Right?
This points to another difference in our belief.. You took that statement and was thinking about evil turning and returning with more evil (which is biblical I agree). But I saw that statement and pointed it toward the more positive story of forgiveness and agape' love and the opportunity to come home and get it right (which is also biblical). Apparently you look at ATM, Rad Man and others as evil unrepentant sinners and unbelievers while I look at them as Prodigal Children of God who have gone astray with their inheritance but always have the opportunity to return home and be welcome. So the question becomes, Who is right about how they view others biblically?
Right. The lord is always available to those who decide to choose his way. This is why we cannot speak others as writing them off. Remember, the power of life and death is in the wield of the tongue. We must speak truth, but we must also be careful that the truth is spoken in love and the desire to see others returned to His side, not speak words that drive them further away. Harsh words stir up anger, but soft words turn away wrath
Prodigal sons? The bible speaks of unbelief as foolish. Blasphemy as evil... and a reprobate mind is promised to them that continue down that path. It is written. Unadulterated.
True, but there is a lesson in the story of the prodigal son as well.. especially when looking at the older brother that was angry at the treatment that was shown to the prodigal. You are speaking of a reprobate mind and blasphemy as them not being able to return (which is what is written). But is it not also written that the final word belongs to God as to who is able to enter into the Kingdom and he will judge as according to the heart as well as the other things?
Now the bible does say that a fool says in his heart "There is no god". This cannot be denied.. Now to give you a little insight into atheists. Not all atheists say that there is no God. Atheism is a lack of belief in God. What atheism says is that there is not enough evidence to support the existence of God. This is not the same as saying that there absolutely is no God. From what I've learned of our atheist colleagues, a couple actually lean more toward agnosticism but on the atheist side of agnosticism. they are searching for evidence that passes their standards. So we cannot classify them as fools as according to what the word says.
not to mention what Jesus had to say about calling people fools. So many Christians tend to forget that part.
"But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, 'Raca,' is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell."
Yeah I forgot about that one.. Which proves your point huh..LOL
God is judge. Again...
I'm speaking bible. The truth.
You cannot claim to be speaking truth until you prove that what you're saying is actually, you know, true. additionally, you are not speaking "Bible" nor is that actually a grammatically correct sentence. You're speaking about your interpretation of the Bible, which is at odds with what other Christians believe that the words say or mean. You are one again putting yourself, your ego and your interpretation on a higher pedestal above what other believers think or believe. In their conversations with you, you insist that your meaning is correct because you back it up with scripture while ignoring that their points are backed by scripture as well.
Your education seems to put you on a higher plane in your mentality. Such a funny thing to watch.
Reading the Bible as a layman is good for your faith, but completely refusing to look at the context or the history is the opposite of knowledgeable. One should always strive for deeper knowledge, not shun it or mock it because it may teach you something new. studying deeper doesn't have to mean that you lose your faith. For thousands of biblical scholars it deepens their faith rather than detract from it. You look down on those with greater knowledge regardless of what they believe with that knowledge and is completely unfathomable to me that you can claim absolute right while simultaneity demonizing deeper understanding.
I do not need a academic relationship with God. Man may teach you whatever he wants concerning scripture. It is up to you and the spirit of God to understand. Again, you cannot call me a liar. That is important. Jesus never gave instruction to be liked when speaking as he spoke. He said the world will hate you, they hated me. I never thought that I would see such hate. But again the bible proven correct.
LOL...Trust me when I say there is no one here who hates you...Other than your writings no of us even know you.
From what I have read so far in this thread, is believers and non-believers alike all telling you the same thing...The Message you are attempting to speak on, is being lost in your presentation of the material...This is not hate...This is lack of proper communication.
I have seen several references to the scribe and Pharisees not having the correct understanding of the scripture (Old Testament) and was corrected by Jesus...(Who by the way, formally studied the scriptures as well...You know academically...)....Could it be that you might be the one wrong in interpretation of the scripture? And Jesus (through various forum posters) is attempting to correct your understanding...
I would have to say...I am fairly certain you have surpassed BROTHER in these forums and the discussions held...And for those who know BROTHER, understand what this comment means...And I honestly didn't think that would be possible...
You know what I mean. Hate the message is what I refer to. Jesus quoted scripture correctly. He showed us how. The "world" hates his message. Hating the messenger is easy. I can't say that I have many "advocates" here but it does not matter. The word as written stands. Jesus lives. And he gave instruction. He assuredly was firm when necessary. I should be steadfast and unmovable. I got that.
yes, Jesus instructed his followers to love their "enemies" and to pray for them. Not to call them names and beat them over the head with the scripture - a path that you seemed determined to follow regardless.
Jesus set the example by spending time with the people that society at large hated. He had compassion on them. He held them. He healed them. He taught to them with patience and peace. None of which you're doing.
Plenty of people share the same message you do. Many of them are my friends - and NONE of them have spoken to me as rudely and and arrogantly as you do. The message that you're actually conveying is nothing like the message that you're trying to spread. Nothing.
"I like your Christ. I don't like your Christians. They are nothing like your Christ" Ghandi.
I agree with being steadfast... The difference... Jesus actually studied the scriptures (something you yourself have admitted to not doing) and allowed the "Spirit" to guide his understanding of what he was taught in "school". You might remember his being 12 years old and discussing the scriptures with the teachers and they were amazed at his understanding...
It helps to be steadfast in your use of the scripture when you are correct in your interepretation...Or at least close to correct...
Aside from your use of scripture, which isn't the issue that most are talking of when it comes to your comments...It is the "I am holier than thou" way that you are presenting it...One doesn't need to "sugar coat it", "water it down" or anything of the sort to be able to present the message that is the scripture in a manner that doesn't come off as "being better than others".
You have mentioned that you don't need academics to understand God's word...This can be true...But some of the interpretations you have offered of the bible is in complete disagreement with 99% of other Christians and Scholars alike...So one of two things....Either your interpretation is wrong or you are the only Christian in the world...
Luckily we all have each other to tell us what's wrong with us. What would we do without these relationships?
But of course...If it wasn't for this how would be able to say we are in the right and all others are doomed straight to hell...
For some it isn't a matter of saying someone is right or wrong, but rather presenting an opposing argument based on various information...And for others...well it is finger pointing for sure...
I wonder how (or if) the opinion of hubbers (In religion forums) would change if they all formally studied the topic at hand...namely religion...If everyone here simply sat through the two free courses offered online by Yale on the Old and New Testaments and then came back and we all had a discussion over what we learned...If and how it may have changed our faith or beliefs, either for the Good or Bad...That would be an interesting conversation I would think...
Continue to go along our lives blissfully thinking we're right without taking the time to reevaluate our actions in light of the results we get
In what way are you qualified to analyze the intent, affect or correctness of any of the commentators here?
Well, I think if he is repelled by somebody's tone, he's pretty qualified to judge that. We are all qualified to judge how somebody's deliverance of the message makes us feel. Since it's obviously not the words of the Bible that sour us... it must be the delivery.
He and I disagree when it comes to point of view, however I am curious about certain things... maybe I should just send an email, but sometimes that backfires.
Deepes is exceedingly easy to talk to. I'm sure that email wouldn't backfire.
We haven't had such good luck in the past.
It's cold here.
It depends on what you are seeking with that one. If you need help or even just want a different viewpoint, he's quite easy and rewarding to talk to.
If he thinks that you are trying to reaffirm a position that is going to hurt yourself or others... or if you are just trying to be a sheep... he's quite unpleasant.
I've been on both ends with him. He is very quick to tell me I'm being an ass, and he's generally right about it when he does. He is quicker to try and help though.
Im not trying to discuss him "behind his back" so to speak. I just had that question for him.
If you recall the last email exchange between you and I began with you levelling a bunch of accusations at me. Of course you surely cannot blame me for my response in that exchange. I even attempted to clear the air during that same exchange to no avail. I am very easily approachable when approached respectfully. Like you, I also respond negatively when I feel like I'm being attacked. That's human nature. You asked a fair question that I will be happy to answer shortly. I am mentally editing my response before I type it
Not with the question you asked, no. Which is why I am editing my response in as best of a manner as possible so you won't feel attacked with my reply
This is how it works with me. You reap what you sow. Approach me respectfully and I am more careful with my replies given my understanding of the topic and the person I am in discussion with. Approach me rudely or sarcastically and I respond the same way. You and I have had good discussions in the past.
And I can agree with that. But there is no reason that we cannot have civilized and reasonable respectful discussion with one another.
If you are referring to our last email exchange, you and I both know it was less than civil. But that's behind us. I prefer to look ahead.
Actually, it's not a matter of being "qualified" to do anything. However, I am confident enough in my understanding of some of the other posters here that it helps me (at times) to be able to communicate more effectively. Now what gives me that confidence? The things that I've learned of others based on conversations that either I have had with them or conversations I have seen them have with others.. In college, I took a basic communication course. In that course, I learned that in order to have the most effective communication with others, you must agree on the actual topic of discussion, but you must also have some understanding of the person with whom you are conversing. So I'm not "qualified" to analyze, but I do have the capability to understand them as well as spiritual discernment enough to be able to communicate effectively (no matter how that communication is)
Yes, I see you do this constantly and as far as I am concerned, you lose credibility b/c of it. I have no respect for this tactic, but then Ive told you that in the past. As for the rest of it... I guess the others don't mind you speaking for them. I find it irritating. I think that is why I have respect for Emile. She does not pick sides. She has her own views, states them and if she is wrong, she usually admits it. I only saw her jump on a band wagon once, it was at my expense, I got over it.
May I ask you this question: How can you have a reasonable discussion with others if you cannot agree on the topic of discussion? Not saying you have to agree with each other on what is being discussed, simply that you are discussing the same thing. For instance, looking at your discussion with the others regarding faith and works, you were discussing two different things at one time, which is why it got mixed up and turned into a debate. How do I lose credibility for wanting to discuss one subject with a person. If the discussion is about the color blue, then how can we communicate effectively when I am discussing blue while you are discussing red?
I do not speak for anyone. I do not put any extra words in anyone's mouth. What I try to do is try to make sure everyone has a clear understanding of the other person is saying. I don't pick sides. I acknowledge good points no matter where they come from. I agreed with what you were saying today and I really wanted to explain it to Rad Man because he was not understanding what you were saying. I understand what you think of me regarding my desire for brokering understanding (if not agreement). This is why I asked you first. You said okay, but now you say it's irritating. If it is irritating, I won't try to help anyone understand what you are trying to say. That's no problem at all. I do not try to speak for you or anyone else. What I do try to do is take what has already been said and rephrase it in an effort to get another person to understand what is being said.
And I do not agree with everyone just to be liked. The only time I agree with everyone is when I see that everyone is saying basically the same thing even if it is in different ways. Besides, It's obvious that you dislike me even when I agree with you so if that is my aim then I've failed.. But contrary to what you have allowed yourself to believe, I don't say things just to be liked. Nor just to be agreeable. I speak my mind and opinion here just like everyone else. and it is my opinion and my beliefs. If you are the only one it seems false to, then that is an issue with your comprehension, not mine
No need for you to apologize at all. Especially when you preface it and follow it with telling me how much you dislike me, think I'm false, and pompous. It makes the apology insincere. If you dislike me, then you dislike me and that's fine.. I honestly do like you, Beth.
Rad Man was arguing against something that you weren't talking about at certain points. You were saying something totally different than he was speaking on.
If I tried and I was wrong, I have no issue with apologizing
Who said anything about either of you needing rescuing? Nobody said you were in any trouble..
I'm sorry you feel that way. But you misunderstand my intentions.
I do speak the truth without placating anyone, much less everyone, I don't speak for anyone else, and I am not on any bandwagons. You totally missed the mark on me
You assume that you have said something that would anger me? Why is that? Is it because you think that I am overly emotional and wrapped up in my feelings that I cannot separate them from a discussion? Or is it that you have "put yourself in my shoes" as you asked us to do earlier and you realize that you would be angry if someone said the same thing to you that you said to me? No, wait, Considering that you asked me if you have sufficiently earned my anger, it is because your intentions were to make me angry? Well, let me alleviate your concern about whether you "sufficiently earned my anger". In order for you to anger me, you would have to meet two criteria: 1) You would have to be an important factor in my life, 2) I would actually have to value your opinion. You fall under neither category. I personally couldn't care any less what you think of me. Since you have taken the time to tell me (again) what you really think of me, it would be remiss of me to not return the favor.. I look at you and see three people. The first person that I see is the person that the Christian in me actually likes a lot. You legitimately want to see people saved and to come to Christ and want to help others. You mean well with a lot of your posts and you have a good heart and a good spirit.. The second person I see is what I wanted to speak with you privately about, but, quite frankly, you're not worth the energy at this point as your heart would trample the pearl I would have given. The third person that I see is the person you are currently showing me. The evangelist that just wants to hear herself speak and doesn't care how others feel. You aren't interested in respect or understanding In this regard, you show little concern for the things you say and how it may come across to others.. There are two issues with this person. The first issue is that you say you don't care about being respected or liked, but then you turn around and whine and cry about being attacked and persecuted by everyone who disagrees with you.The second thing about this is that the third person is in direct conflict with the nurturing side of you that wants to help save others from hell. You don't care about conflict because you are in conflict with yourself.. because your negative approach contradicts your empathetic and caring heart. As a result, you come in the forums looking to project your inner conflict onto others. Yes I like to help people and give advice.. Here is some for you.. Maybe you would be a lot happier in your life if the three aspects of yourself were actually in line with one another.. Once again, you reap the harvest of the seeds of the seed you plant but you don't like the taste of the fruit.. I almost feel pity for you.... Almost. But any emotion I would think to have would be wasted on you.
There, I said what I needed to say, now we can be done with it, as you put it
No, b/c the last time I even attempted to say this... you went off big time.
Im not fond of the way you come across, but I don't know you... maybe in real life, you're a wonderful man. That isn't my point though. My point was that I thought you should be real and that you shouldn't speak for others. For some reason you missed those two points when I responded to your email. I tried to explain again and then wondered why on earth I didn't just let it go. I deleted, but you had saved the msg... so here we are.
And the last time you "attempted to say it" you came across the same exact way you just did this time. You were very rude toward me even though I had not been rude at all. I had taken the time to respond to your respectful question in the same manner as to where I was coming from and you basically took several shots at me.. Just like I told you last time, I will respond to you as according to how you approach me.
Sure Deepes. So then we wont have to revisit this again?
Ummmm, notice how some can argue and chat and remain friends.
remain? i don't think any of y'all are my friends, although there are quite a few ppl I like very much. There are even a few I have asked to be my FB friends b/c I liked them enough to ask them to be a part of my more personal pretend life. if you saw me on the street, would you know me rad? ive never even seen your face.
Not to but in, but if one can have emotional affairs online, I assume that one can also be friends.
I had a lot of online friends... we talked for hours and months and shared our personal lives... I simply haven't had that kind of relationship with anyone here like that. Im probably not looking for that anymore. I was isolating at the time, and separated from my husband... Im trying to live a different kind of life now.
And I respect that.
Just a brief reminder that you don't have to go to the opposite extreme to avoid the previous extreme.
I looked you up on FB but couldn't find you Melissa... I spend a lot of time on FB and would have asked you to come into that little place in my life... so I am not running from ppl I like. Seemed like you were mad at me for a few months, but I wasn't worried about it. Ppl go thru stuff... I just wanted to give you whatever room you needed. But we're cool, at least on my end.
I have no problem with you sending that request, I'll email the link if you like. But my facebook is a dangerous place.
If you think these guys gang up on you here, you should see what they do to me on my FB... usually with the help of my husband.
I don't post statuses anymore.
I am going to speak for the others, because I can do that. I don't ask for permission.
The five of us are very blunt people. If you don't know us that can come off as offensive. But I can tell you that the more that they care about you, the blunter they are. It's not insensitivity, not really, it's the honest belief that they love you enough to move past all the extraneous crap that comes politeness. They love you enough to feel safe that you aren't going to be angry if they give their opinion.
We don't know how to deal with those who can't do that. We don't know how to walk on egg shells. None of us. It seems counter-intuitive to communication.
No one hates you because of your beliefs. We would all be hypocrites to love some and hate others. We just don't know how to deal with you.
Mo can say "Mel, you are being a bitch" (and has) and I have no choice but to consider that I likely am... or she wouldn't have said it. It doesn't hurt me, because I know that she still loves me. It's just a statement of fact.
The biggest problem I see right now, is that Deepes was trying to be polite to you. That means that he was actually concerned about your feelings and worried about how you would react. It DID sound fake (sorry Deepes) because he was too concerned about trying to not offend you to be himself. It sounded wishy-washy (sorry again hon) because he WAS trying to see things from your side. He was actually reaching out... and you took offense because it didn't sound genuine.
Well, genuine from Deepes doesn't care about hurting feelings. Not because he doesn't care if feelings get hurt, but because he's used to being able to say things bluntly WITHOUT feelings getting hurt.
I'm not sure if I'm making a whole lot of sense, not because I don't know what I'm saying but because you don't operate the same way and I fear that it's like trying to explain something without a reference point... However I know the conversation we were having while he was trying to talk with you...
He was trying to answer his very best "calmly" and "diplomatically". Those were his words, not mine. He was trying to alter his behavior in a way that might reach you in a different way.
I'm not sure how attempting that can be bad.
You were the 666th post therefore everything you said was false.
lol just kidding... the whole tone was totally too much for me... I can only do serious for so long and it seems like we've all been at it all day.
I have a sprained ankle so I've been lying in bed all day. I'm bored to death. I have nothing to do but type on this computer. I don't know how other people can do it. I'm going all philosophical. It's painful. If it doesn't get better soon, I might become a monk, in goatfukaway. I have people who have people there.
I was being serious though.
Im not going to tell you what I thought your made up country said...
Yeah... I had the day off today and once again tomorrow... two days in a row. Ive worked so hard for so long I forgot what it was like to breathe... now I started a new job and I feel like Im 80 years old. Im ready to retire... but I wouldn't be good at home... bad choices at home... I think Id like to retire and become a huge musical sensation. I think that's the new plan.
It's pronounced go-at-eff-ooka-ahh-ay. The W is silent.
The more you slow it down, the dirtier it sounds. You couldnt have said Peru?
It was serious but necessary. We know where we disagree in principle with one another, but that shouldn't stop us from being able to have conversation. What we told you earlier wasn't blowing smoke. We really do not agree with one another too often.. Half the time I wonder how it is that we like each other...LOL. I guess humor brings people together at times because all of them make me laugh.. and I know my face makes them laugh
Yes, Melissa goes all serious and emotional and I get made fun of.
See why I choose sarcasm and apathy?
Im sorry! I just disagreed with half of what you said and didn't want to face anymore disagreements. lol
Im good at avoidance. Give me an uncomfortable situation and I will make it 10 times more uncomfortable. Who's bad!
No sweat. I probably disagreed with the same half you did (though for different reasons) and maybe more...LOL
We didn't have to visit it this time. I'm kinda disappointed, though. We were doing so well earlier. We were very pleasant to one another. having a great and respectful discussion. Then you went left on me.. **SHRUGS**
No, Beth, We never have to revisit out personal opinions of one another.. We (or at least I. Let me speak for myself) can keep it strictly professional from here on out and stick to whatever topic is at hand.
It seemed we were doing well cause I didn't share my feelings. I resented those things about you. I told you privately... you began speaking for me again and it irritated me enough that I spoke out. Im sorry it was a surprise to you that I still feel that way.
No i didn't speak for you.. never mind.. you don't get it. I'm not going to waste the energy trying to explain it to you since you aren't trying to understand anyway. It is what it is.
On a side note, you notice how well you do in the forums when you separate your feelings from the subject being discussed?? conversations (with some) go a lot further and there is more open dialog.
Ugh. Condescending again... you also approved of my joke earlier, remember? You were pleased with it or whatever... I don't know, maybe Im interjecting tone... we should move on.
Yes, you are interjecting tone. There was nothing condescending about my statement. I was just pointing it out how different the conversations are when your approach is different.. I meant nothing sarcastic by it. I've shown absolutely no anger toward you and continue to show no anger. You are forgiven unconditionally.
You just don't get it. lol
You appoint yourself teacher, translator, parent... it is super irritating. lol
We are all at some point or another trying to teach others. Were you not trying to teach earlier? It seems to me that you were trying to teach the meaning of the scripture of Faith without works and salvation to Rad Man. Am I incorrect? If I am incorrect and you weren't trying to teach anything, the way it appears to me is different than what you say you were actually doing. To me, you appointed yourself teacher as well of the scripture. Same difference as you are saying I do in reverse. you say I'm trying to teach, I say I'm not.
exactly.. never mind.. Let's both dust our feet from this one and move on to another discussion.. It's a shame, though. We were doing so well earlier until you decided to take the first shots at me... again.. Like you so often do
lol... I let it go when you do that... but for whatever reason... Ive had a hard time letting you play your games tonight. You are the one who takes shots... tons of them and I silence myself. Ok then... move on.
True to form.. Look back at our conversation from when you initially asked me about my qualifications. No where in there at all did I take a shot at you. I answered your question with the same respect that it was asked.. You asked me if I was a peacemaker, etc. I not only answered your question respectfully again, but I also defended you against another hubber (who I count a friend I might add) who had a response to you. No, you didn't ask me to, but it was necessary for me to let her know that you did not ask me the question.. I was nothing but pleasant to you up til you launched your little tirade against me. I called you out on it and now you're playing victim again.. You deleting your post doesn't change the fact that you said it nor does it change the fact that it is what you feel. It lowers your credibility (if such a thing is possible at this point) for you to try to back track and delete your comments, especially without offering any type of apology for having said it once it was exposed..
What did you want me to apologize for? I said what I meant. Those two points. You heard them... you received them... you are not ready to move on then?
I don't want nor need your apology.. I mentioned that because you said what you meant then deleted it. Why delete it if you meant them and did not feel bad about them. stand by your statements.
I was glad to speak my mind at the moment, but it's not always wisest... after some time passed it seemed unimportant to be heard.
If it was unimportant to you then you would have never taken the time to post them
It became unimportant later... as the night went on... you misunderstood.
No I didn't. Truth is that it was important for you to get it out. I can understand and respect that. We both got some things off our chest. We understand each other and how we view each other personally. I say it again, I actually do like you a lot. You say you don't want not need any help but as was discussed earlier that faith without works is dead.. We established that sometimes actions do not always match intentions. But I truly mean no harm when I try to help everyone understand what is being said.
Ahhh. Are you drinking again? You really should talk to someone who can help.
How do I do that thing where I put your earlier quote about always being respectful inside this box? Or was it "kind"? Eh... it doesn't matter. I said too much tonight... Im gonna finish Parks and Rec and scrabble and head to bed.
As I said earlier, sometimes one needs to be a little cruel to be kind. I do wish you well. I just noticed that as it get later you make less sense.
That's you my friend.. remember? You have shared that you drink at night before you go to bed, But I appreciate you pretend caring about me while in reality just insulting me once again.
I read at night before I go to bed. And I smoke first thing when I get up in the morning.
What does any of that have to do with the price of tea in China?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?
Seriously, there are times when I feel like I'm reading through the transcript of a recorded preschool class.
Reaching. Scholars have knowledge about a plethora of subjects. Only God may guide you in your understanding of scripture. Teachers have knowledge not spirit. Now if both are present in one being, good business. From what I have ubderstood, young Jesus was in the temple teaching, not learning. I guess I could be wrong. But what you think?
OK.. Religious Scholars...know about religion...
Scholars teach on the text that is the bible, not the interpretation of it according to a set belief system. Although there are courses to that field as well, that teach spiritual understanding of the scripture based on the particular Doctrine one may follow.
When one speaks of God guiding your understanding, that is more about the spiritual understanding as it pertains to your personal belief.
And I can tell you from many years of study, I can only think of one, maybe two Professors who didn't have a very devout faith and a deep spiritual connection with the subjects they taught.. So to say they taught strictly knowledge without some guidance from Spirit as well is not true in the least bit.
I have some other comments, but they will remain unsaid...
Cgenaea, Let my try this once. None of us hate you. None of us hate the message itself. None of us have an issue whatsoever with you presenting scripture. We all agree about what is written in the word (even JM). The biggest concern that I have (only speaking for myself) is the way the word is being presented as well as your tone when speaking to us. I showed you examples of of your condescension toward and judgment of me and you dismissed what I showed you (as predicted) as you merely giving your opinion, yet when we express our opinion of you, you accuse us of judging you. All each of us here has done here has spoken the truth in quoting scripture. We have also used that truth to reinforce our opinion of what we think of each others actions. You mentioned that your directive is to quote scripture. The bible give us the directive that we are not just to spread the message, but also to bring others closer to God. We cannot win people with our words alone. We also win people with our actions as well as our treatment of them.
I believe that at some point in my post I did say I was speaking for myself
Understandable. But if you look at previous posts to mine, you will notice that others also mentioned not hating her. In light of those posts, I used we and us adding my voice to the general consensus. But I also mentioned that I was speaking for myself too.
Yes I saw that. There was definitely a "we" and "you" vibe going.
I understand your message loud and clear. The bible scripture that I qoute comes across as condescending and superior "tones". Good.
Now, if I was speaking about how great genaea is, you have a point. See? Again... I speak from the bible; not my mind. I agree that interpretarion means a lot. Word properly placed can be brutal. It is designed that way for the believers. It is the mirror for reproof. When you quote biblical scripture it shows you you. Not me. I cannot show you you. My mirror is EXTREMELY FOGGY. Comparing yourself to others only brings you further off course. God has the only correct standard. It is written for all to see. And NO... he did not pet the unrepentant. He spoke. He expects us to. Jesus spoke to those who followed him. From town to town he was not talking to the "others" they were not listening. Yes???
Actually, I am a big advocate for you quoting scripture and spreading the word of God. My only concern is in how you address those who disagree with you (especially those who share the same faith that you have). This whole discussion has not been about WHAT you have been saying at all (Even though the atheists lack a belief in God and disagree with religion). It has always been about the WAY you have been saying it. That's all.
Do you use any concordance when reading the Bible? If so, v you are using the work of actual biblical scholars. Study is required to actually see deeper meaning. I don't understand why you are so against knowledge and understanding when it comes to something as important as religious belief. or do you only like knowledge when it confirms what you already think?
Who in earth do you think is being hateful to you? We're disagreeing with you. That's not hatred. That's conversation and debate.
Obviously, there is no getting through to a bible thumper who has disconnected themselves from reality so much, they believe they're Jesus and everyone hates them. No problem, if they want to believe everyone hates them, let them believe it. They obviously don't care, why should we.
actually, to be fair, she has quoted the Bible a lot and what she has quoted is true of what is written in the Bible
The bible corrects all who listen. That is what the written word is for. You tell me that I am not as kind asJesus was with sinful thoughts and ideas. But I am. He did not pet the sinner. He rebuked. He expects us to do as he did. Jesus was kind to the sinful woman at the well. But what do you believe his response would have been if her response was. Sin no more??? God made me sinful. Or, aint no God, Man!
He did not rebuke the woman at the well.. He simply told her to go and sin no more.. He did not call her sinful or ungodly. Please show us where you follow this example.. Don't worry, I'll wait
Hey! You just said what I said.
Now what would his response to her have been if she said to him, what do you mean sin no more??? Or a flat out there is no God???
And yet you did not answer. He did not call her ungodly. But you have called several here ungodly. He did not call her evil.. You have called others evil.. So again, I ask.. Show us where you follow this example...
And to answer your question, he would probably tell her what is written and then tell her that she does not know the truth and remove himself from her presence all the while still showing her love and his prayers. He may even try to convince her by performing another miracle. He will not stand there and call her names. Now would you follow this example?
The bottom line is that he rebuked in gentleness as well as sometimes harsh and when it was not received he went along his way while dusting his feet. He did not stand there and call names.. Show us where you follow this example
Still waiting on where you follow these examples of christ.. If you only hold on to the telling and rebuking part, you aren't following the whole word and example. You must also show them the example of the way Christ lived. Live a life of ministry, not simple evangelism. I hope you know the difference between the two
He called many to the carpet. He rebuked those who did not listen to the truth. He called a spade a spade. He did not allow untruth to stand. No he did not call her sinful, he had no reason to. She accepted his directive. He was harsh with many though.
Will you give me an example of him allowing false ideas to go unanswered?
But who was Jesus harsh with? He was harsh to those who looked down their noses at others. People who were teachers of the law. People who were so convinced that they were superior to others that they missed his message. He was harsh with the priests and the teachers of Scripture. Not with those he came to serve. He was kind, gentle and accepting of people - an example that you seem deliberately unwilling to follow with your insistence of calling other believers wrong, and insisting on calling non believers names. I don't recall where Jesus did that.
Good point. He was not harsh with people who flat out denied what he spoke. Wait... who did that? The scribes and Pharisees. They subjected others to the stuff they made up from their faulty misunderstanding of scripture. They rejected his truth because they were comfortable with their own understanding. And boy did THEY receive a tongue lashing. But I am dealing with flat-out disbelief. Now, I am sure it warrants response. What kind do you think is best?
I don't think you understand what's being said to you. The scribes and pharisees were entrusted with the laws of Moses and leading the people. Jesus repeatedly told them that they were so obsessed with the letter of the law that they missed the message, much the same as the way you're obsessed with quoting scripture to believers and unbelievers that you're not finding the spirit in which it was intended. In order to understand the meaning of Scripture or literature, you have to examine the context. You have to look at why it was written, what it meant at the time and who it was addressed to, all of which you have repeatedly admitted that you don't know or care about. You feel as though you have the correct interpretation and therefore anyone who disagrees with you is wrong, no matter what spirit or study they have. You don't care about context you only care about your own interpretation, which is often at odds with the common interpretation of other believers and scholars alike who have spent lifetimes investigating these questions.
If your goal is to bring others to God, you're failing. People are repulsed from your message because of the arrogant and judgemental way you approach them. You can have the best message in the world, but if your approach forces others to disregard it, you're message is completely pointless and lost. It does no good, for example, to deliver a message of love by demonstrating judgementand hatred. Why do you feel as though you must respond to atheists at all? Why do you not pay attention to how your message is perceived when it is directly related to the negative reactions you receive from others? This is not the example of christ.
Response to the assertion that there is no God is necessary for all who listen. The letter of the law was misinterpreted. The words still stand. Jesus reiterated. The rebuked were corrected for their incorrect thinking. My truth is rejected because I don't say please? truth is truth. If I lie, jump on it. But truth stands.
Can you break down your paragraph into English so that intelligent people can understand it? I have never EVER made the claim that there is no god. If you're going to respond to me, then respond to me and make your responses to thing that I've actually said. You cannot read my mind, you do not know my heart and I don't appreciate you speaking for me for things I've never said.
Jesus did not say 'respond in a negative way to anyone who says they don't believe in me'. He said deliver the message, and if they don't accept it, move on. That's not what you're doing here. You're name calling and bashing non-believers AND other believers who do not fall in line with your interpretation of the bible, coupled with your admitted ignorance of its history. That is not following Jesus' example. That' putting your own will and your own spirit above the commands of what you claim to believe in. It sounds like you're doing it for yourself - not for any other reason. it's selfish, it's arrogant and it's transparent to everyone that you're addressing.
I am not moved by being unliked. It proves scripture. You and others have to put words in my mouth or take them out of context. No one may say that I have lied.
It's not about being unliked. It's about your message being effective, and it's not. You're not getting your message across in a way that brings people closer to a relationship with God. You're pushing them away from it. The effect of your approach is the opposite of the effect that Jesus said you should be aiming for, yet you don't seem to care about that. Therefore it is reasonable to deduce that you care very little about following his example or getting his ultimate results.
Again, you reap what you sew. If your goal is to bring others to Christ, your approach is having the opposite effect. Instead of admitting that your approach may be misguided, you just dig your heels in and keep right on going because your ego won't let you admit that your tone with others may be erroneous. You're too proud (as in the opposite of the humility that you keep repeating) to actually consider the fact that what I'm saying (as well as many others, including your brothers and sisters in faith who are trying to help you)
The bible won't let me stop. He wants us to stand firm. Not waver. But you may know that already.
But your words and actions are contrary to the message you're trying to get across and they're nothing like the example you claim to be following. Jesus didn't speak to common people like you're speaking to us. He spoke with love when reaching out to people. You don't. I sense no love in your words. Only arrogant self righteousness.
You have stepped into a conversation that targeted me from the very beginning. The biggest beef as far as I can tell is that I am too sure of what i say and i leave no room for doubt. I can handle that. Nobody calls me a liar. Now that God does not accept. Firmness? He likes that...
But some of your statements are outright lies, and plenty of people have pointed it out to you. I don't think you're wilfully lying. I just don't think you know or care about the actual truth.
we cannot fairly call them all lies. As has been pointed out before, she has quoted scripture. This cannot be denied. as for some of the other stuff, she has not outright lied exactly. She has given her honest opinion on what she sees which happens to be based on a limited (at best) knowledge of and understanding of those that she is engaging. Of course the issue with this is that without seeking to understand others, we cannot accurately provide scriptures that can actually help nor can we demonstrate and apply scripture that can help bring others to Christ.
I hate that I got busy at this point. Lies??? Plenty of people pointed??? I know it has been a while for me. Soon as I say im free and available, I got busy... but wow... lies?
Yeah, Rad. Sheesh. Keep with the class!
Try me... see what I do with biblical "conflict"
I admit that I am unwilling to "think" for myself. God has the final say.
Matt 19:26 says “But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible.“
Judges 1:19 says “And the LORD was with Judah; and he drave out the inhabitants of the mountain; but could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley, because they had chariots of iron.”
All things are possible = could not drive out the inhabitants of the valley. Meaning not possible.
Matt 13:31-32: ” “the kingdom of heaven is like to a grain of mustard seed which…is the least of all seeds, but when it is grown is the greatest among herbs and becometh a tree.”
The mustard seed is not the smallest seed and never becomes a tree.
But since you admit to not being able to think for yourself. Why bother?
Maybe you should use all that free time the lord gave you to do something useful. Volunteer work pops to mind. Healing the sick, feeding the needy, etc.
Or is the spirit of Christ telling you that he would rather you sit on your butt all day arguing in a small, hidden religious forum on a writer's website and telling others that follow him that they are wrong?
'Cause the spirit of Christ tells me to get off my ass and do something useful most days.
The spirit of God directs me because I acknowledge him in all I do. I am RIGHT where I am supposed to be. now if he directs you to get off your butt... do.
So that's basically saying you do absolutely nothing to help anybody. Do you really believe that's the spirit telling you to NOT help anyone and NOT do charitable works?
Jesus REALLY tells you to not do anything but argue online? Or does the bible say that?
Or can you only find that passage in the bible that says "Sit thee on thy ass and judge my followers on Hubpages" only appear when you are reading with the spirit?
Ok, I'll bite. What do YOU believe my error is concerning the scriptures? Please give an example. Do you too believe that I am in err for consistently quoting scripture? Oh and where do you see me as prideful or arrogant. Specifically, please. Anyone else willing... please. Specifics
There was no bait to bite at, but, uh...okay. I said nothing to you regarding your errors about Scripture. I have no issues with Scripture no matter who is sharing it. Again, you seem to be seeing things in what I'm saying that simply aren't there. If I feel discomfort with what you have to say, it's because of the superior and condescending tone in which it is delivered. And true humility (since you've pointed out SEVERAL times how humble you are and how it's all about God) doesn't generally lead a person to repeatedly point out how humble he/she is.
Well, when my actions are deemed ungodly, I need to check. The bible is superior and actually can feel a bit condescending. But that is my bent; scripture. I can't quote scripture with an unsure voice. I don't know how. I quote scripture. If misplaced, I will correct it. Since you have no problem with scripture (that I speak) then I see no problem we should have between us. Thanks for the response, I needed to know. I am not beyond reproof. The word of God is. I always check myself. So far, the spirit approves.
The spirit approves? Of course your spirit approves as it is the one you listen to telling you that you are correct. Question is though, which spirit are you listening to? Also you are talking about the spirit, but have you checked THE WORD? We have tried to show you where the word shows you wrong in how you apple but you dismiss our showing of the word as not applicable to you because you are following the spirit.
You are calling me puffed up because I have no sugar to sprinkle on the words of God. You tell me that I err in my tone??? But NOT the words of the bible. My "tone" is faithful. Not wavery. I can handle that. Now do you have ANY example of my superiority sound???
But you only quote the parts of the Bible that you like and that you agree with. You do not heal the sick. You do not give all that you have to the poor. You do not reach out to others in love. You spend your time telling people who have devoted years and years or research and study that they are wrong while simultaneously admitting that you have never done that level of study or research. You contradict yourself from sentence to sentence within the same post and talk yourself in circles then call other people names when they point it out to you. You set yourself on a high horse in judgements of atheist and believer alike. You are not a follower of Christ. You're the equivalent of the priests that Christ called vipers and hypocrites, so obsessed with the letter of the law that you completely miss the meaning behind it. According to scripture, jesus said that in the same manner you judge others, you shall be judged. In light of that, I feel sorry for you, so obsessed with trying to be superior that you've lost sight of the message itself.
I presented this already.. She said it didn't apply to her. It was for those who misinterpret scripture.. Or something like that..
You back to God? congratulations! I speak whatever word necessary or expedient at the time. I "like" it all. I have not held anyone to my standard. I speak from the bible. I believe what I say wholeheartedly.
No one has said that you err in presenting scripture.. Where the error lies is in the tone in which you present that scripture. you present it in a tone of superiority over others. You also have repeated dozens of times how humble you are. Who are you trying to convince, us, yourself, or God? True humility does not need repetition as it shines through no matter what you do. To constantly tell others that they are wrong and you're right does not show humility. it shows pride and a desire to elevate oneself above where they should be.
You hit the nail right on the head. I notice this often and not just of her. It goes to show the lengths the mind will go to get what it wants. She wants to feel righteous, superior and humble so she convinces herself she is all three. That's why there is so much conflict in what she says and does. I'd be willing to bet that if we looked into her life we would find all kinds of things the God of the bible doesn't like.
No need.. She has revealed some things herself.. Then of course, like some others, instead of taking responsibility for those actions and turning away from them she falls back on the safety net of the Christian insanity plea: "But it's okay.. I know I'm a sinner, but I'm saved by grace." the problem is that God is not pleased with someone repenting of a sin then going right back to doing the same thing.. The bible mentions this.. It's like a dog returning to its vomit. They take in so much of what tastes good they regurgitate it to purge it then returns to eat the vomit no matter how tainted it might be because they still remember how good it was to them the first time
It is such a blessing to see this type of conversation. We all are sinners, is that your point? Telling the truth of scripture is likened to vomit licking??? I cannot be sinless without the spirit of God to "cover" me. The sacrifice is what that was all about. The bible says that he who says he has no sin is a liar. I tell the truth. No sugar.
“‘This people honors me with their lips, but their heart is far from me"
Jesus will render to every man according to his deeds. Speech is an abomination before the Lord. Only deeds matter.
no.. You missed my point totally (though I am not surprised). The point is that here in the forums you come with an air of superiority and condescension over others. Not sure how you repent in your prayer life, but if you pray and repent for doing everything that is not pleasing to Him then come back to the forums and behave the same way, it is like the dog licking vomit. Repentance means to turn away from doing anything that is not acceptable to Christ.
You are not sinless regardless of if you are covered by the blood or not. Being covered by the blood does not make you sinless. It makes you forgiven in your sin.
You keep pointing out my air of superiority and judgment but you give me no example. I pray that he is with me as he told me he would be. But pray that I don't make people feel bad with scripture? Nah. He knows that people don't like the message. I was warned. Blessed are you when you are persecuted for my name's sake. Uh, I think Im good.
Right. May as well be sinless if you are forgiven. Right? Though my sins be as scarlet... faith covers sin and justifies one who has the spirit of God. Right? Help me out here.
no.. FORGIVENESS covers sin only. It does not justify the sin in anyone (whether they have the spirit of God or not). Forgiveness does not say "hey it's okay to do whatever you want as long as you have the spirit inside you". Neither does faith. Faith says "I believe in his sacrifice for the forgiveness of my sins". Forgiveness says "What you did was wrong, but I will wipe the slate clean" It is our conviction as well as repentance that says "What I did was wrong, I'm sorry, and I will not repeat the same action"
Faith justifies the person. Not the sin. Sin is NEVER justified. An unrepentant heart is unacceptable. If I decide to just be wrong as in "your God is silly and I aint taking it back because his lady though truthful didn't tell the truth like I like it." I am in err. And I will pay a price. A firm disbelief in God requires a harsh response. I aint mean. Just sure. The lives of those who have not made up their minds are at stake.
Take Moses. How far does he get with, "please sir, if you don't mind, the Lord is asking that you let all your slaves go with me, please" He firmly stated with assurance that the people be let go; along with consequences for disobeying. After a bunch of such consequence, God got his way, right? The Lord said, "they hated me, they will hate you too" thanks to all of you for proving my father right once again. But it ALWAYS happens.
you need to re-read the Exodus story. Pharaoh was completely willing to let the Israelite people go on more than one occasion - and then god himself hardened his heart and changed his mind so he could continue torturing the Egyptian people. As if that isn't bad enough, the Israelites then had to smear blood on everything so a supposedly all-knowing, all-powerful god would remember that his people lived there so he wouldn't kill them accidentally when he forgot.
Ritual was important then for some reason. You sound judgmental.
conveying the facts of the story sounds judgemental to you but all of the things you've said to atheists and believers alike doesn't? Your words are just "opinions" as you've now admitted, but other's are judgements? You alone gets to make that distinction? Why?
We all distinguish according to how we view. Are you not judging the Lord's decision about what he wanted them to do?
As if that isn't bad enough, the Israelites then had to smear blood on everything so a supposedly all-knowing, all-powerful god would remember that his people lived there so he wouldn't kill them accidentally when he forgot.
If one judges even God; I have no chance of avoiding it
Do you think an all knowing, all powerful being isn't able to recognize his own people without having a bunch of blood smeared on their door? I'm not judging anything. I'm just pointing out that it seems silly and redundant to something that claims to know everything.
If pointing out your contradictory remarks and quotes is judging you, then I suppose you are reaping what you've sewn - completely heartless disrespect for others who are more learned and educated based on nothing more than the fact that they disagree with you.
Maybe just maybe the Lord only wanted the faithful to survive. Maybe he wanted only those who would obey no matter how silly they felt it to be... just a guess. But for sure, he had a reason.
I find it slightly amusing that you interpret our recognition of your proud nature hateful. No one hates you, honey. We don't even hate the attitude. We just don't care for it, and wish we could help you get past it.
You may do better making another wish. I boast not of myself, Honey. It is the word of God that is hated by those who feel that they are already ok. I do understand that.
You do boast of yourself. You claim repeatedly that you speak Bible but everyone else that uses the bible to prove you wrong just gets an attitude from you. You claim that you and your interpretation is the true interpretation due to your "spirit". You demean non believers and you insult fellow believers. You're unwilling to admit that you may be wrong about ANYTHING. You refuse to admit that you may be wrong and you refuse to rethink the way you speak to or approach others. None of us hate you. Even as an atheist, I don't hate the message that Jesus taught. The way you're expressing it is the big problem - not the message itself. That's what all of us keep trying to tell you, but you're unwilling to even see that much.
Let's keep this truthful. I do not boast of myself *or my education. It just aint important. What is important to me is Jesus. He was not a pleaser of people. He surrounded himself with those who let him in. His own people rejected. He pleased God. He showed us how. He regularly blessed and rebuked and he did not ever relent. He gently urged in truth. Unless he had to get his belt I cannot do different. He wasn't "nice" to disobedience and petty arguers. He spoke.
Yes! That is so with all of us. When you believe, your outcome is different. Speaking the word of God without bias and unfettered does not equal superior mindset. I am sure that the bible is powerful. I speak it. How do you find a superior tone from me? I speak bible. I do not speak genaea.
That's a deliberate lie, and everyone recognizes it but you.
A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.
You speak nothing but Genaea. Everything you preach works for you. Are you holier than thou? I seem to remember you have a bunch of dogs and a bunch of children, but no husband. I'm not judging as my beliefs don't judge, but yours do.
Now, if I say you are wrong; there is scripture to back me up. I do not pose as authority. The bible is superior to me because that is where the unmistakable truth is. I have no truth. That is why I do not give my "opinion" so much. I cannot speak of myself. I would be dead at hello. I speak bible. You know, they told Jesus he was acting superior too. he told them the truth.
You never answered my question... so I'll pose it again...
Why are you ignoring the word and the spirit by not spending time doing good works?
I think we can all agree that Jesus's spirit and actions were all about helping others. I can also pull plenty of the word out saying that you will be judged by your works.
So why are you exempt from that? Is the spirit telling you something contradictory to the slew of verses that instruct you of this... Is the spirit telling you to NOT do something that Jesus specifically said to do and showed with his actions?
Sorry. I am right where I am supposed to be. I must've forgotten to state that earlier this is good work. You all seem to be on a path to correct me where I am wrong. I want to be right. I need correction for my evangelism to transform into ministry. Any suggestions? Be "nicer"? Unsurer? More flexible? Please show me the way to truth.
I don't know the will of Christ.
Yet I do know that even those who follow Christ are repelled by what you claim to be his words.
If you were truly walking with the spirit, you wouldn't be driving believers away from his words. Since it's not his words that are doing it... it's got to be the way you are presenting them.
In short, you are doing the devils work.
As far as a ministry, I would suggest helping people. Leaving your home and walking amongst those who need his light most. The homeless, the sick, the grieving, the poor, the depressed, the needy. Then you show Christ... you don't talk him.
Those with questions want answers. That's what testimony is, is answering questions. It's not lectures, it's not forcing the the word upon those who don't wish to hear.
Jesus didn't round people up in chains so he could preach to them against their will... they gathered around him because they could see his goodness. You have shown me no goodness in you, no light, I can learn nothing from you.
Now you attacked Mo earlier, but I have a question that you really need to think about. If an atheist on these boards were seeking to find Jesus... Not that they are but if there WERE... who do you think they would go to? Who would they be most receptive to hearing from?
In short, who has the best chance of showing an unbeliever the path? You or Mo?
I think it's quite obvious who is repelling those from the word and who is letting their light shine.
So again, who is doing the most evil? She attracts with God's word... you repel.
None of us three are flexible where it comes to our beliefs. Neither are any of us unsure of what we speak of when presenting the word of God. When it comes to being nice, we aren't trying to be liked. Christ wasn't trying to be liked. He simply lived a life that gained him followers and people that respected him. In our speech and actions we also try to emulate Christ. That we are garnering respect is an added bonus that is secondary to us following Christ. It's not only about your words or the mastery of the word. None of us are denying your knowledge of the word.. As far as the difference between evangelism and ministry, let me explain it this way..
If I recall correctly, you are a parent, correct? Let's say that one of your children go missing (God forbid). Do you simply stand on your front porch yelling for them to come home? Or do you go out in search of them to see where they got lost and bring them back home?
Evangelism is like the former.. It is standing on a soapbox or a platform simply yelling for people to come to God and tell them about the bible.No matter what others do, evangelism does nothing more than speak the word. Ministry, on the other hand, identifies a need in others as well as tries to find out where others may have gotten lost at, they then see what they need to do in order to bring others to Christ. Where Evangelism is telling them to come home, ministry is going to get them and bring them home (though not forcibly).
Once again, there isn't anything wrong with evangelizing, but the problem is that people must be within the sound of your voice while you're standing still.
Just a thought
You use scripture to prove that you are right, and others use scripture to demonstrate that you're wrong. You ignore that scripture in favor of your own interpretation. Why do you think that is? Because you're looking for justification for your own behavior so you listen to your own spirit?
Let me quote the bible here.. Iron sharpens iron..
Besides, you believe in treating others how you wish to be treated.. I'm sure you also believe in reaping what you sow.. You planted a negative seed. You are now reaping the harvest.
Planting a negative seed is what I refuse to let go without biblical correction. I am harmless; the word of God harms... "self"
Lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him and he will direct thy path. I firmly believe that is true. I acknowledge God; not feelings or popularity. Jesus was hated for his truth. I am also "hated" for his truth. The bible told me I would be. It seems by that statement that if I am "liked" for the word of God, I am telling it wrong. But that may be a bit hurtful to some.
You wouldn't that because you don't know Jesus, you only know Christianity.
No, you are not hated by anyone. The Bible says that because Christianity is a hate cult and teaches people to hate others for not following it. It is no different than a despot telling his followers that everyone will hate him for his truth.
Notice that the Christian will never allow themselves to act or behave like Christ, but instead they will turn to the Bible, the hate cult of Christianity and shift the burden of responsibility over to it. They will even admit the Bible does indeed does the whipping, that it tells of harsh consequences to those who refuse to follow it, that they are evil.
Again, this is not what Christ taught or wanted of his followers to behave.
Do you not know that Christ upheld scripture? He also told us how it is to be regarded and considered. I am not at fault for using scripture. It is my directive. Feel as you wish.
That is impossible considering scriptures was written long after He was gone. You are not listening to Christ, you are only listening to Christianity.
Oh!!! Now I see... Jesus said, "it is written" a few times. He even sat in the temple with the priests poring over those written words. You are yet mis-taken.
You know it is very telling that someone who professes to follow Christ and be judged by their fruit will ignore requests to show that fruit.
Jesus spoke of such false prophets.
You will know them by their fruits... or lack thereof.
I encourage all reading this who want to walk with Christ to carefully consider any one who professes to speak with the spirit of Christ yet has nothing but words to show. Christ warned over and over that words without deeds were empty.
Anyone who professes to know the will of Christ, yet shows no Christlike behavior, is surely speaking with a forked tongue.
Can YOU give me an example of my ungodliness?
Can you give me an example of Christlike behavior that you exhibit?
I haven't even made the suggestion that the fruit you bear is rotten... I'm saying you don't seem to have any fruit at all.
And you realize that we are encouraging her behavior by responding to it?
Maybe if she didn't get the feedback/conversation that she is obviously desperately seeking, she would be forced to leave her computer screen and actually seek meaningful relationships with others.
I really do think some volunteer work would help her. She could grow spiritually-which I think would be very very good for her- and actually find some companionship and proper social interactions. There seems to be a disconnect between what she thinks she sounds like and what she does sound like.
The only way to help with that is to have human contact.
Anyway, I'm going back to not reading her posts now. I do wish you all would stop quoting her. I keep finding myself being drug back into her drama.
Although I think I know who you're talking about, I don't for sure. I am only responding because it reminds me that since there is a person whose posts I don't read, whenever I check back into this forum I get lost (back around page 13 was the last time I could easily follow) and it makes it difficult.
But as Christians, we are called to help each other if our actions are not lining up. We are not encouraging her behavior, IMO. We are more trying to show her a different way to present the truth as well as show her how our method of reaching others is lining up with the word of God as well as opening minds without compromising our beliefs or the word. It is up to her whether she recognizes our efforts or not.. Either way, We did our part to have open dialogue. This turned into more of a discussion rather than a battle
Joh 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Joh 14:7 If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.
Rom 10:13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?
Rom 10:15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!
Rom 10:16 But they have not all obeyed the gospel. For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?
Who has believed? Who has obeyed?
The Word of God is like a sharp two edged sword, meaning it cuts both ways. It hurts when you are cut.
You want to know what it takes to be a Christian? Unwavering adherence to the Word of God. A life of dedication to God, through Christ Jesus. He is the daysman Job spoke of, the one who can reach down to man and reach up to God.
You have asked what good deeds Cgenaea has done, but if she tells you, then you will say she is bragging. None of you really know what good anyone has done but just doing good deeds does not make a person righteous. You can only be righteous by confessing Jesus Christ as your Savior and doing His commands.
Recently my son went to Columbus, Ohio to help take and distribute items in a homeless camp. He can't wait to get to go again. This is a good work for him to do. He is only 16 years old. He was baptized at age 10. When I see how people are treated in this thread, I wonder, what would I do if my son was the one being treated like this?
Here is the gist of it. God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. John 3:16 God gave everything for all men and women, ever boy and girl. He chose all to be saved, but will not go against your will to save you.
Many of you are against preachers because you have a rebellious spirit about you. Rebellion is wrong and a sin in the eyes of God. The first sin committed was rebellion against God by Satan. Look where he is now. Stop stirring the pot and if you believe in Jesus, that's great. If you don't believe in Jesus, that is your choice. He still died for you that you might have life and life more abundantly.
You are always on time!!! I hate I didn't see this earlier, but it is great to have this fire-quenching word of God now. I felt kinda bloody he knows! He understands! He sends comfort! Awesome God!
I am so glad to be his.
No, actually I wouldn't have said she was bragging. I asked a question, fully expecting some sort of answer. As there was none, I assumed that there ISN'T one.
I don't really consider, IMO, evangelism as a good work in and of itself. See, THERE is why I spurned the Baptist Denomination. To me the entire philosophy says "You don't have to do anything but believe... and all it takes to be a good Christian is to make more Christians that don't DO anything.
It always seemed to focus on doing the bare minimum to save your own ass. In this case the bare minimum seems to be flapping of a cyber-tongue.
It takes NOTHING to copy and paste a verse. NOTHING. And to speak it takes even less.
To me, Christianity has to be more than that. A Christian should be compelled to make the world a better place... not to save their own soul, not to gain followers, not to earn a place in heaven or avoid hell... but just because that's the ESSENCE of following Christ. Otherwise, why bother?
Faith, to me, should be about being a better person. THAT is the reward, not everlasting life. What good is that if it means heaven will be filled with selfish, lazy people who cared for nothing more than ensuring their own cloud.
How is that Christlike?
Now, to that end there are a few Bible verses that really have changed the way I live my life. And while I rarely throw verses around online (after all, there are plenty of free Bibles at the touch of a button) I'm going to quote one.
"What good is it, my brothers, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can that faith save him? If a brother or sister is poorly clothed and lacking in daily food, and one of you says to them, “Go in peace, be warmed and filled,” without giving them the things needed for the body, what good is that? So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead."
That's pretty powerful. Faith-without works-is dead. It doesn't describe the works as preaching either. It specifically describes them as giving food and clothing.
Why are you trying to help those in need by speaking hollow words? They mean nothing to those who are cold with their bellies empty. Even if you COULD go to heaven just by speaking those words, even believing them, to what ends? What good would it possibly do to ensure a place in heaven if it meant that you left another person cold and hungry?
That whole thought process, which I DO believe is the spirit of Christ guiding me, is the reason I will never set foot in a Baptist church again. They were telling me I didn't have to help those people, that I just had to believe. The were telling me something directly opposite of what Christ had shown me.
Faith without works is dead. A very basic teaching.
The Bible agrees with this point of view.
Works without faith is far more important and actually gets things accomplished. The Bible is obviously wrong about that.
Eph 1:18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints,
Eph 1:19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,
no one can understand the Word of God until the eyes of understanding have been opened. Sp many claim this and claim that but most have no clue what it entails. They rely upon their own private interpretation and get others to agree with them. The Bible states, Many are called but few are chosen.
Have you ever thought about what that really means? Many are called, Jesus calls out to many, in fact He has called out to everyone who ever lived and are alive now for it is not the Father's will that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.
Have you ever noticed how the prophets of the Old Testament lived? They kept to themselves almost constantly. Why is that? is it because their messages were constantly rejected? is it because no one wanted to be around them? They lived what they preached. Isaiah went naked as a testimony against Ethiopia. (just one example)
out of here for the night
I am going to take one recent catastrophe, Katrina.
I am going to point to the help of the church... God's church, not a specific denomination, to show clearly that the ppl of God, though never perfect, make great effort to be the hands and feet of God to a world in need.
http://www.umcor.org/UMCOR/Resources/Ne … --Teamwork
Northridge Church (no clue, Christian or possibly non-denom?)
http://www.nac-usa.org/connect/mission- … elief.html
United Church of Christ
I do not belong to any of these denominations. The list goes on and on as I know ppl who personally went down there, with their children, and sacrificed their time, finances, and even safety to serve those who were hurting. I do not agree that the church does not put their faith into action.
I'm sure that the food is just as nutritious whether it comes from the hands of a Christian or an Atheist. Warmth is warmth no matter who lights a fire. A house built by an atheist provides exactly as much shelter as a house built by a Muslim. A coat provided by a Hindu covers just as well as a coat provided by a pagan.
Faith doesn't change the effectiveness of good works, it doesn't change the outcome a bit. Those in need are helped by the act... not the philosophy.
The point of the post was to refute the implication by ATM, that Christians had only faith, but no works.
And though I agree with your main point, I would say that the motivation of love, or concern for your fellow human being is a much valuable gift then someone who might serve for less noble reasons... and of course there are those who would.
If the motive of helping others is to secure a good place in heaven then that's selfish, if the motive is to help other at the expense of one's self then that would be noble.
I doubt the motive would be to help others at the expense of oneself, though that could certainly be the outcome of serving others. I agree with your first statement though.
You don't think someone would help others at their own expense?
Of course I do... it's just not an actual motive, it's an outcome or a result.
Most help that is given is at the expense of one's self. I can't think of one instant where it's not.
There are some people who think that by doing good deeds they are getting a better place in heaven. So they are doing deeds for personal gain. For some it's best they continue along this path as they are at the very least attempting to help others regardless of their misguided reasons.
I could be wrong but I also believe she is suggesting that only Christians of her nature can be compassionate which I have already shown her that is not the case, but she is sticking to it.
8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
As you can see by verse 9, earning your way into Heaven is in direct opposition to the teachings of the Bible.
And yes, you are wrong about the latter. Its no more my belief than the point I was trying to make which was simply that I believed it was better to serve out of love than to serve for any other motive.
Indeed, faith without works is dead. Thank you for those two verses which state the same.
I said that it is God that gives the gift of eternal life, lest any man should boast that it is his works which could earn him salvation.
If you do good works for God, it is based on your love for Him. He says He will reward you, though that is not the motivator, the motivator is love. There are many verses which support this which is why you have to read the Bible as a whole and not just in part.
Of course the motivator for a non-believer is also often love. No God required.
Please understand... God is speaking on the importance of living for Him. Doing good things to benefit others... unselfish act of kindness. This is good to Him. This is the kind of life He desires for us, but it does not have to do with our salvation. We cannot earn our salvation.
Again with the example of the spouse... Your wife is your wife no matter what she does. She can choose to let you do all the work around the house or she can help you. She can help you with the kids or she can ignore you. The bible is saying that if she loves you... she will do good things. Outward signs to show you that she loves you.
So you're saying that it requires both works and faith for salvation?
Because you have to have works for faith. And you have to have faith for salvation.
So far, I'm there.
However that does kinda mean that those who are doing works to keep their faith alive are doing it to get into heaven.
So yes, in that case their personal works would cause their salvation...if they already had faith.
That's the ONLY way that the two verses aren't diametrically opposed.
So you both are right, biblically.
Don't you both feel like you need a shower now?
Now my personal take on it is that if you are trying to follow Christ, your salvation shouldn't matter a bit. You should do works because it is wrong NOT to do them.
No, Im not saying that works will earn you salvation. I am trying to say the opposite.
Ooh, Melissa, that's another very good point... stated in James 4:17
"Therefore to him that knows to do good and does it not, to him it is sin."
So yes, the Bible would support your belief there.
No. We can do nothing to earn salvation. It is a gift of God.
God is simply saying what good is it to believe and nothing else?
Would you want a husband who said he loved you, but did nothing to show it?
God says even the demons believe. So He is saying that if we believe, we should follow thru with actions of love for God and others.
But what I'm saying is
Faith is needed for salvation.... right?
And good works are needed for faith... right?
So you have to do good works to keep your faith alive... right?
So you have to earn your faith through good works... right?
So yes, you do have to earn your way into heaven... It's just not the only step. Because while your good works might not be being judged, your faith damn sure is. And...once again... you can't have faith without good works.