This is what you people that are so ready to spew biblical reasoning don't understand about those of us that are somewhat taken aback by your zeal. We think you are slaves that try to justify your slavery by telling us that we will not be rewarded by the master unless we become slaves too.
We don't want to be slaves, so you tell us that the master has a special place for us, and that place involves a lot of screaming for mercy, what with all the fire and such.
We feel bad for you. We feel that if there was a god he would be a lot cooler, and let us get to be about a thousand years old before we started slowing down. Without pneumonia or herpes or arthritis or crabs or aids.
We could really get to know our friends and family, and instead of working most of our lives we would be develop our talents and skills to create trully great art (what kind of marble wonders would michaelangelo have been able to give us if he would have lived to be a thousand ?)
Your argument assumes that believers are slaves, and we try to justify our own slavery. To justify our own slavery, we would have to believe we are indeed slaves.
The problem is, you define our situation as slavery, but we define it as believing. Neither is more correct than the other, they are only as correct to each of us as we make them.
Just because you consider it slavery doesn't make it so.
As to the hell and fire and stuff, if that's the problem you have with Christianity, would you have the same problem with sects of Christianity that don't preach that hell is a fiery place of punishment?
What if hell were actually a place of reward, just not as much reward as heaven?
Well, the fire would still be pretty scary.
Ok... let me try and open your scope of thought a little more.
Let's say, there are two places you can go after this life. If you are in the top 50% of God's 'good' children, you go to Heaven. Heaven is a place where you bask daily in the pure love, peace, and happiness of God. You also get to actually live with, walk with, and talk with God.
The bottom 50% of God's children go to Hell. Hell is a place(no fire), where you bask daily in half of the pure love, peace, and happiness of God. Here, you don't get to live with, walk with, or talk with God.
Even though there is no fire in Hell, I would still consider that Hell. Having to spend eternity knowing that if I had been better, I would have been worthy of that better place.
Please note that I'm not actually trying to describe heaven or hell, nor what I believe specifically. I'm only trying to present an idea. With this kind of situation, God is able to show mercy to all, but still reward those of us who really try.
"but still reward those of us who really try
I'm not giving criteria by which God judges. I'm not saying you have to be a Christian, or a Catholic, or any other denomination. After all, if you had to be Christian, would that be fair to the billions of people who never heard of him?
Every person is given access to a certain amount of truth in their life. God just wants to see what we do with what we have.
I'm curious LewSethics... did you start this thread to invite what you expected would be replies so you could attack them to justify your point, or are you actually looking for different ideas and different points of view?
Sometimes I actually get some original thoughts, but most of the time its boring rehashed crap. The few original thoughts are worth all this.
Ok, so an option that I provide which doesn't require slavery to avoid fire just doesn't cut it for you... perhaps you could say 'I've heard that idea before but it doesn't make sense to me' or some such thing... that way we know you've at least considered it in the past.
You are attempting to define 'those who really try' as those who submit to what you call slavery. I'm not saying what his criteria are. I'm just presenting an idea to you to try and help you see a point of view that doesn't involve what you think of as slavery.
I didn't stutter when I said I see you as spiritual slaves. That is my firm belief.
I am not attempting to define anything else, the rest is all on you.
you said : Ok... let me try and open your scope of thought a little more.
When did you ever open my scope of thought one bit?
When I asked the question, what if hell were actually a place of reward, you still thought of fire. I wanted to get you to envision a more heavenly version of hell.
Yes, you said you see us as spiritual slaves, but you start your question with asking us why we try and justify our slavery. Your wording makes me think you're not actually looking for other points of view, so much as expected answers to refute. I'm sorry if I'm misinterpreting, but your responses such as
"but still reward those of us who really try
"Oh, then we go to hell."
seem to show that you're not that interested in a possible new idea.
It is on me to tell you about my beliefs, but it is up to you if you want to actually consider the world from another's point of view.
If you did believe that God created you and the universe it would automatically be worship. It would be because you are in awe of such a being. And you might actually love this being for creating you.
I don't have any issues with the awe thing. I would certainly be awed by such a being. But somehow worship seems so demeaning to me. Not the love, but maybe I see it as a kind of spiritual caste system, with man-made rules. Why would any superior being want lesser beings to grovel at their feet? How would you feel if someone was grovelling at your feet?
(What if hell were actually a place of reward, just not as much reward as heaven?)
You are either the king of strawmen or a troll.
The OP clearly states: "....you people that are so ready to spew biblical reasoning...."
There is no biblical reasoning that advances the idea of hell as reward. This is the sign of a troll - arguing simply to be arguing, with no regard to the actual topic or conversation.
You love !the love you have for family and friends where designed .you as a man would be in the image of God .and the bible says God is love. your emotion shows concern for others yet two people Adam and Eve changed the future for themselfs,and now we live with the effects of thier dissobediance ,Gods love has not abadon us .we still have a future ,where he will correct all damage done here on earth in his own time frame ,not from our human standpoint.the cure for all dreaded deseases have been paid for ! with the value of a prince . his son ,the Universal creator himself gave of this gift .thats why all sacrefices of animals has sease. his blood covered the intire human race.so we could get a chance Adam and Eve lost for us. I am sorry about the pain you feel.
about the ones you love ,and being sick, we all are effected .but the truth is .people have twisted the bible ,and many use it for the gain of money or power .and not helping people to really know the good news .and that is all things will be made new. what you see today is the effects of men trying to rule men and it does not work. history has proven this, and now because everything is all messesd up down here ,now we want to blame God for the mistakes man has caused . Like blame the teacher not the student for bad behavior. and grades! just an example.
So God is love.
Then, as long as I love, then I commune with God.
What need for religion? Or do you think that people didn't know how to love before religion?
we are all free moral agents ,we can believe or not believe,we can act and not act. love and decide not to love ,man creates robots ,the creation of humans is far more coplex then we can learn in our own life time .like the program of DNA. and other things about us. Religion is a title ,just like father , or dad -the saying anybody can be the father ,but just anybody can not be a dad. so goes with religion ,many titles and claims .but the real truth of worship that he approves of is there .only the heart can really accept this invitation of truth. and it depends what you want !do you really want it ,or do you get more out of argueing about the right and wrong of religion. because that is not the real treasure.
It is mankind that creates slavery, not God. God did not create slavery, it was human beings. Jesus came to earth to embody God to show us what God is like. Jesus said that He and the Father were one--that if you have seen Jesus--you have seen the Father. Jesus got very mad at the religious people of His time. He told them that they made up all these religious rules and made the people like slaves. Jesus came to set the slaves free. An even deeper form of slavery was that people were enslaved to sin. No matter how hard they tired, they could not help but to sin. They were enslaved to sin and they were also enslaved to Satan. This is why Jesus came--to set all of creation free from this slavery. He was as a ransom and paid the debt for sin. He was as a Victor and defeated Satan and the Kingdom of Darkness. He did this so that people could be truly free. Each person has a free will to choose to respond to God's invitation or not. Those that do respond, acknowledge that they cannot "buy a ticket" to heaven or get there by good deeds. They know it is through the sacrifice of Jesus and by His gift of grace that they can have eternal life. Jesus came not to condemn the world, but to save it. And so those that receive this gift through Jesus, are reconciled to God. The relationship between man and God was broken by sin but Jesus is like the bridge that makes a connection. Worship is lifestyle. Religion can make worship seem like "have-to" and "ought" and "you better or else" kinds of tasks--but this is not God--this is once again, mankind. God desires relationship. When one encounters God, the response is automatic worship, God is so holy and "other" and awesome and beyond description. To worship is to love. It actually means "to attribute worth." God is worthy of worship because He is good--perfect. When I sing Him a song--that is worship. When I talk to Him (prayer), that is worship. When I laugh--that is worship. When I help a friend in need--that is an act of worship. When I write a story or draw a beautiful piece of artwork--that is worship. All I do, I do unto His glory because He is the creator of all that is good.
As far as hell, it is the place set aside for those who of their own free will, made the decision that they did not want to have relationship with God through Jesus. It is the place of the "absence of God." If a person doesn't want to know God in this life, then why would they commit to an eternity of being with Him in heaven? Hell is a person's choice to say "no" to God's invitation of relationship with Him. But a reason it is so bad, isn't because of fire, if there is fire, but its because when people see God as He really is, they are sad and regret that they can't spend forever with God. What people miss, is that they often have a very skewed view of what God is like. They get their ideas from all kinds of places, but if people could really see what God is like, they would not say no. Not to a perfect God who loves perfectly and wants to bless unceasingly. God is the great reward of heaven--not the place, itself. Which is quite hard to imagine, by the way. If you think of the most extremely beautiful and perfect place, that is dull in comparison to how amazing heaven actually is--and that is dull in comparison to just being with God! This metaphor is lacking, but imagine being in relationship with the girl of your dreams--she's the perfect woman--literally--and in every way. And she is the most beautiful woman on earth--and she loves you. You could stare at her for hours--just being with her is all you need. You don't care if you are in a mansion or a tiny house--being with her is the gift. Small example of the awe and beauty of God.
Also, God is not the creator of evil--the evil in this life is not because God wanted us to suffer. Evil is the absence of good--the absence of God. In this existence of free will, when people chose other than God and His ways, the absence of God creates the evil. For example, God's way is "Thou shall not murder." If somebody chooses the way that is not God's way and they murder--evil then occurs. We are actually a people that love justice when we see it here on earth, but for some reason, people don't want that same justice from God. If a mass murderer went to court and the judge said, "I'll let you off just because I feel like it" people would be outraged. We have a sense of justice--evil should be punished and should not be allowed to prevail. But when God acts in just ways, people say He is not being fair. Justice demands that evil and sin pay a price. But alas, even in His justice, God is merciful. For what did He do? He sent His son, Jesus, to pay that price for those guilty of sin and evil and he offers them not just a "way out" of sin but He offers a gift that actually transforms them--frees them from the bondage of sin and slavery to evil and empowers them to do good and live righteous lives.
Unfortunately, Christianity was created instead and gave us bloodshed and wars for centuries afterward. Now we have Christians who do little more than preach goodness but their actions are the exact opposite of what they preach.
While it's fine to respect that which is good, it is folly to worship it. And of course, God has shown He is not perfect and is not always good.
What a horrible evil God you worship, who sets aside a place of eternal torment for those who do not choose him.
Funny though, other Gods that YOU don't worship also have a similar place. How will you avoid those hells?
We get our ideas about God from the Bible and from believers who claim they know such a God.
Baloney. We can find great evils in scriptures showing extensively how evil your God has been.
So, you're saying that evil is the absence of God and that evil should be punished and not be allowed to prevail, that it should pay a price. And, you equate that evil to mass murderers.
There is no spiritual slavery, whatsoever, in true worship of God, "as he really is", a.k.a., Spirit, based on Christ's perfect and diacritical death on the cross and characterized by "a new way, a living way" with complete freedom from time, place and religion.
We better do some catching up!
(John 4: 21-26; Heb. 10: 19-25)
According to the "complete freedom" in the "new and living way of worship", based on Christ's Spirit-active, perfect and diacritical death on the cross, all religions (including Christianity) are spiritual slavery.
(John 4: 21-26; 8: 21-28; 12: 32-36; 16: 5-15; 19: 30-37; Heb. 10: 19-25)
The current argument aside, I believe the OP's question "What is the difference between worship and spiritual slavery" is this:
Worship: Usually designated to a deity or a loved one, it is reverence, loyalty, and love for that one. May involve faith in the object of one's worship, trust, even understanding thereby enforcing the loyalty. (May or may not be justified).
Spiritual Slavery: Spirit pertains to self. Spiritual slavery literally means being a slave to one's spirit. Always involves past experiences which serve to enforce attachment to behaviors which may or may not serve our better good or enlightenment. We cannot detach from spirit but can practice brain/mind re-entrainment, intentionally creating present and good behaviors and experiences which will then become our past.
The slavery part is getting over allowing past experiences to control our present much as one would not want to allow emotions to rule our judgment and decision making.
Both worship and spiritual slavery can involve religion or deity but would not necessarily.
Many believe we must be slaves to something, spirit, god, our past. This is not so. But it does take a lot of focus and effort.
Being a child of God is service not slavery. It is a choice that is freely made with your eyes wide open. God has no use for slaves-slaves are forced to serve, Christians and Jews choose to serve God out of love. I think followers of Islam probably do as well, not by force.
One who is bound by spirits must do what the spirits want them to do. For instance, a heroin addict must use heroin because they cannot help themselves. It is something they have to have in order to function.
The same goes for worship. Worship is the freedom to give God glory and praise Him. This worship is something a child of God must do. Not because God makes us do it, but because of the spirit inside of us. Jesus said, "The Father looks for those who will worship Him in spirit and in truth."
We also know that the warfare we fight is a warfare of the spiritual realm. We are not fighting against flesh and blood but against spiritual wickedness in high places.
Jesus also said, "Whom the Son has set free is free indeed." Though we are bound to God, we are free.
Slavery is something that is put upon a person to do.
Worship is something someone does out of awe, respect and love.
Slavery is work
worship is appreciation
Its an attitude thing
Voluntary slavery. Its easier to turn off one's mind and become a sheep, just accepting what others tell you without using any reason or actual thinking. What kind of all powerful being would care about things praising it all day long.
Its not that he cares about people praising him all day long, so to speak, but that by doing so, we show appreciation for what He does. Its the same as saying thank you to your parent for the present, but with God we have so much more to be thankful for, that praise is not enough but adequate.
How long would you keep doing things for me for if i never told you i appreciate what you do? And lets face it, God does some very incredible things.
Really? An attitude thing? So, what "attitude" should have a slave have?
A slave should want only to escape, to be free to be himself . . . however, you have Christianity, the Bible, and God assbackwards - you assert that a Christian is a slave and then argue that made-up point when the Bible directly declares "you are no longer a slave, but a son", and goes on to state that you, without God, you are the slave, a slave to your own corrupt nature that you cannot resist or control . . . you shake your fist at God yammering "I'll not be your slave!" when God calls you a son and promises that through Jesus you can be free, and that if you are free in Jesus "you are free indeed".
With you guys it's like arguing about which football team is better and you know you're right and we're foolish because, according to you "The Cowboys have poor batting and their left jab is ineffective and they can't get the ball to the net" . . . you make-up a false notion of 'Christianity' and then argue against it asserting we're fools to believe it - but what you argue against simply is not we believe.
No one makes up false notions of Christianity other than Christians themselves. The rest of us are merely on the sidelines observing the games they play and what we argue is exactly what Christians claim to believe.
The fact that you might believe something different than other Christians is not surprising because it's not related to those whose arguments are based on what they observe.
ATM "No one makes up false notions of Christianity other than Christians themselves"
Well of course they do - it's observable. I am a Christian and I am constantly, always, like relentlessly charged with believing some manner of 'Christian' teaching that I do not believe at all, because it is not Christian at all. And, as I said, admittedly, there are many who identify themselves as 'Christian' who advance, or at least suggest, the same false notions you call 'Christianity' - but to choose the silliest and most frail of a group to strive against is a bit self-serving and pointless.
ATM "what we argue is exactly what Christians claim to believe"
"Exactly", really? That simply inaccurate. Look, I could announce myself to be a follower, even an authority, of history, but if I advanced that George Washington sailed to America on the Mayflower after killing Stalin in Athens, you would certainly say that, I can call myself what I want but I am, in fact, no true follower or authority on history. Because religious beliefs are so defined as private and protected we (in this country) imagine that this means that anyone can say that Christianity means whatever they want t to mean - but that's not what freedom of religion is all about. You are free to believe whatever you prefer to believe, but just because you assert that Washington came here on the Mayflower doesn't make it so.
Christianity is based on the Bible, and the Bible is a book - it says what it says and it doesn't say what it doesn't say . . . if you want to argue that Christianity teaches that believers must become slaves to God you are free to do so - but you are simply wrong, Christianity does not teach that believers must become slaves to God - it says we are no longer slaves but have become sons and are free as no one else is free.
I see little difference from the entire group who wish to call themselves Christians, I certainly don't denigrate the magnitude of their silly beliefs from one group to another. They are all equally silly beliefs.
ATM "what we argue is exactly what Christians claim to believe"
Agreed, but that's what we observe from Christians, their freedom to believe whatever they want and whatever they want it to mean. There is ample evidence of that on these forums.
That's the interesting thing about indoctrination, they accept the decision to believe so they never see themselves as slaves shackled to an ideology.
A Troubled Man,
May I ask you; do you count, in general, that Christians are Christians due to indoctrination while skeptics are skeptics due to deliberation? I don't mean as you sit and consider what the most reasonable view for you to hold is, I mean as you go about your life and come here to these forums, etc - does your approach to people and ideas come from a place within you where you see Christians as indoctrinated to believe as they do while you see non-believers as having escaped indoctrination and informed by their own private deliberations?
That would depend on what you mean by "private deliberations"
I'm asking; is it your view, as you encounter Christians here or wherever, to assume the Christian is someone who has been indoctrinated and is unable or who has not yet been able, through private deliberation (rather than by public 'deprogramming' or group counter-indoctrination, etc), to escape his religious indoctrination - while you see the unbeliever or non-religionist as discounting Christianity because he has not been indoctrinated or has managed to escape the grip of his indoctrination by means of his own consideration of the matter ("private deliberation")? So that, in the end, do you see Christians as simply those who are the less thoughtful more easily manipulated among the population while seeing the skeptics as the more intellectually honest and bold among the population?
Like, are you inclined to think that those who are Christian might just as easily be Muslim or Republican or Klansman, etc, had their upbringing and/or influences been so inclined - while those who are skeptics might very likely be essentially the skeptic/non-religionist they are whether they were raised or under the influence to be Muslim or Republican or Klansman, etc?
A completely different attitude and motivation than you have
The initial distinction that comes to my mind between worship and spiritual slavery is that worship is a voluntary act of celebration while slavery is a forced servitude. As you are willing to generalize 'us people' permit me to offer a generalized apprehension of 'you people'; what you guys who seem so ready to "spew" your own reasoning toward us don't seem to understand about us is, worshiping God is not a matter of of a needy God requiring mortals to over and over fall to their knees before Him crying "you're so great, you're so great, you're so great", etc - Biblical worship is not a fawning all over God to puff-up His shallow ego, worship is enjoying and celebrating who God is and what He is like. And, who He is and what He is like is that He is our Father and He is love . . . when God calls us to worship Him, He's not instructing us to repeat phrases of adoration at Him - He's inviting us to share in and delight in Him and His love.
99 times out of 100 you guys own and present a very false notion of what Christianity is and what the Bible presents as the truth, and then you fault us for believing such foolishness - but we don't believe the silliness that you guys rail against, you're battling against your own religious concoctions and counting us morons or emotional cripples or intellectual adolescents as you do it. Admittedly, there are many who identify themselves as 'Christian' who advance, or at least suggest, the same false notions you call 'Christianity' - but to choose the silliest and most frail of a group to strive against is a bit self-serving and pointless.
And, of course, your finale point of "We feel that if there was a god he would be . . ." is illogical - if there is a God, a God who created and superintends all that exists, the eternal divine Spirit that the term "God" suggests, then how could you guys imagine that whatever your impressions or inclinations or desires of what He would or should be like might be valid?! We're creatures, creatures who get hungry and sleepy and are afraid of the dark, etc, we don't know or understand ourselves how can you imagine that God ought to be as we assume and prefer Him to be?! Certainly whatever man imagines the best God would be like is an asinine idea . . . and then we you say you'll not want or seek God and a relationship with Him, the eternal and infinite creator and sustainer of all that exists, unless He is as you think He should be?!! You? You who can't even remain on a diet if you smell a hot dog . . !? . . it's up to you to define what is proper for God to be like?! How are Christians the goofy ones in this scenario?
@LewSethics, interesting the "cool" God you present, and that would be nice if the only thing at stake were the temporary Homo sapiens vessels. But these bodies don't mean squat.
We were created in God's image -- and NEWS FLASH: God is not Homo sapiens!
God is a non-physical (thus no physical idols), spiritual and immortal (timeless) source of creation. That makes us inherently non-physical, spiritual and immortal sources of creation -- the image and likeness of God.
So, while your wish to be 1000 years old or even a million ignores the very real mission of religion -- the reawakening of the spiritual children of God. After that, these bodies are useless.
All of the creation of Man has been interesting and sometimes beautiful, but don't get too attached to the physical realm. I know, time flies when you're having fun, but in a few million years our sun will become unbearably hot and Earth will lose its oceans. A few million after that, Earth will lose its atmosphere. What good are Homo sapiens bodies on a dead, burned out cinder?
Without these bodies, you're left with your own blind nightmares. The choice is yours and that's the point. Hell isn't something foisted on you by an angry and vindictive divinity. Hell is the result of your choice. Some people commit suicide. Again, choice.
My born again cousin tried to pull me into her cult by telling that in heaven Gawd gives out really cool jobs.
Those who think for themselves, and those who think according to authorities other than themselves, and who are assumed greater.
I choose to worship my God. Nothing at all to do with slavery.
Unlike Islam. Where the submitant is a slave to allah. Where there is no free will or choice. Simply submission to the inflexable will of a hateful master.
See... fairly simple
What is the difference between worship and spiritual slavery?
Acquiring good attributes of the Creator God and thanking Him for all that He has put in service for us is worshipping Him. How and why should it be termed as slavery?
You may say, "I am allowed to do anything." But I reply, "Not everything is good for you." And even though "I am allowed to do anything." I must not become a slave to anything. You say, "Food is for the stomach, and the stomach is for food." This is true, though someday God will do away with both of them. But our bodies were not made for sexual immorality. They were made for the Lord, and the Lord cares about our bodies. And God will raise our bodies from the dead by his marvelous power, just as he raised our Lord from the dead. —I Cor. 6:12-14
Jesus replied, "I assure you that everyone who sins is a slave of sin. —John 8:34
Do not let sin control the way you live. —Rom. 6:12
Sin is no longer your master, for you are no longer subject to the law, which enslaves you to sin. Instead, you are free by God's grace. —Rom. 6:14
Here are a few more good verses on the subject of "spiritual slavery". The truth is that God will set you free by the power of the Holy Spirit. Worship is praising God for his power, his brilliance and his GLORY! He made the very fiber of our being and to praise him is to honor him. God sets you free! Satan will make you a slave of whatever you secretly harbor in your heart. You know what it is. We don't need to know, but God surely does.
Before, you let yourselves be slaves of impurity and lawlessness. Now you must choose to be slaves of righteousness so that you will become holy. —Rom. 6:19
The trouble is not with the law but with me, because I am sold into slavery, with sin as my master. —Rom. 7:14
There is another law at work within me…This law wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. —Rom. 7:23
They promise freedom, but they themselves are slaves of sin and corruption. For you are a slave to whatever controls you. —II Pet. 2:19
While I'm at it, I would like to add one last thought for the day by Einstein. After research, I found this "clip" from Wikapedia. I thought it might be nice to share this with you.
According to biographer Walter Isaacson, Einstein was more inclined to denigrate disbelievers than the faithful. "The fanatical atheists," Einstein said in correspondence, "are like slaves who are still feeling the weight of their chains which they have thrown off after hard struggle. They are creatures who—in their grudge against traditional religion as the 'opium of the masses'—cannot hear the music of the spheres." Although he did not believe in a personal God, he indicated that he would never seek to combat such belief because "such a belief seems to me preferable to the lack of any transcendental outlook."
I am not an atheist, and I believe that organized religion is the opiate of the masses. You are told what to believe by someone who knows no more about it than you do. The key praise...if it is verbatim...is Organized Religion. As to a personal God? How personal God can be is up to the individual. If you really don't want him bothering you, he won't. Unlike the followers in that religious organization. He doesn't much care for them either. It's all in the gospels...in the words of Jesus...there, and there alone. He himself called us all...everyone of us...gods. He also said that he was no different than we are, that we would be able to do all that he had done. I believe that it is our next evolution, but it won't occur until all the sheep are in the corral. A good shepherd doesn't lose most of the flock. A good shepherd doesn't lose a 1/4 of the flock. The good shepherd loses a single sheep, and he no longer is a good shepherd. Here is what I believe about E=MC2. Everything is a manifestation of energy, including that thing that does exist, and therefore must be included in the equation...consciousness. Everything is eternal, and we spend most of our time in the state of pure energy. Does God exist? I think all bets are off. In short, I wouldn't take odds either way...unless I knew something else...and I do.
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