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#227532 - 05/29/08 04:42 AM Re: Why...? [Re: FormerTexan]
blueshift Offline
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Registered: 01/21/08
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I'm really mistrusting my memory on this so if anyone else remembers this passage then maybe they could help me out here. Anyway I vaguely recall some Bible passage in which Jesus says something to the effect that whatever kindness you show to the least (or lowest in social status) of your brothers that kindness would be considered shown to him.

Well, like I said, I don't remember very well, but my feeling based on totally insufficient information is that any reference to Jesus in the Bible talking about hellfire and damnation is way out of sync with the core of his teaching and my strong suspicion is that those out of sync references are probably more likely coming out of the many rewritings of the Bible by church officials than really coming from Jesus.

I mean, why would Jesus teach love and forgiveness and at the same time teach that God is somehow not an example of those teachings? But I don't consider the Bible to be written by God, yet I do idealize Jesus, so I'm definitely biased in that direction.

But about what you said, freedom,

"If I choose to not cross or leap from the edge that is my choice. I have been given the right to make that choice. He will honor that. But he will continually up until the last minute keep walking with me urging me to the bridge every way he can and in his point of view I guess all else is expendable in order to get me to the bridge."

Where is he? I don't hear him urging me to the bridge and neither do billions of others! The Bible might be said to urge me, but how can he hold it against me for wanting to hear it from him instead of from a book that might just as well have been written
by a bunch of folks thousands of years ago trying to start a religion?

It just seems to me that if God is really serious about this hell business and really wants everyone to avoid it, he would be doing a lot more than inspiring some people to write a book and then expecting us all to accept this book on faith which is something all our experiences on earth tend to teach us not to accept anything on.

Finally, let me apologize in advance for any offense inadvertently given--I mean no disrespect to anyone for their beliefs, but I also realize that I have strong feelings on these issues which tend to make me express myself a little abrasively sometimes when casting my 2 cents.

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#227654 - 05/29/08 07:28 PM Re: Why...? [Re: blueshift]
FormerTexan Offline
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Registered: 09/12/04
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Loc: Denver, CO
Blueshift,

"but my feeling based on totally insufficient information is that any reference to Jesus in the Bible talking about hellfire and damnation is way out of sync with the core of his teaching and my strong suspicion is that those out of sync references are probably more likely coming out of the many rewritings of the Bible by church officials than really coming from Jesus."

If there is ever any doubt over authenticity of today's translations of the Bible, one can always refer back to the original koine greek and see what was being said. One can also see if there is harmony between the greek and old Latin translations.

"why would Jesus teach love and forgiveness and at the same time teach that God is somehow not an example of those teachings?"

To me, God truly is a God of love and forgiveness. However, there are those in this world who reject God and His love. I personally cannot see how one can expect God's love to completely cover rejection of Him and His Word to the point where heaven is an option regardless. It's all about a relationship with God. How can there be relationship where God is completely rejected?

Andy

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#227735 - 05/30/08 12:59 AM Re: Why...? [Re: AndyJB2005]
mike5 Offline
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Registered: 08/01/07
Posts: 170
Loc: Cleveland, OH
Hi Andy -

I'm a bit late reading this thread, but I thought I'd mention a book that it reminded me of: "If Grace Is True" by Philip Gulley and James R. Mulholland. The idea they present is that, if grace is true, it is available for everyone, period. They talk about how radical an idea that is. Apparently it flies in the face of some religious doctrines that say grace is available only for those who satisfy certain requirements first. I found it to be a really inspiring book for a buddhist/uncertain-about-religion guy like me! Thanks for reminding me of it - I'll give it a re-read.

Peace, Mike


--
So the cowboy says "I met God on the way
here, and you know what? He's not mad!"


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#227772 - 05/30/08 08:38 AM Re: Why...? [Re: mike5]
FormerTexan Offline
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"if grace is true, it is available for everyone, period."

I agree, it's available for everyone. But availability does not mean it will be accepted. There are those who flat won't reach out for it.

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#227773 - 05/30/08 08:38 AM Re: Why...? [Re: mike5]
FormerTexan Offline
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(Duplicate post)



Edited by FormerTexan (05/30/08 11:17 PM)
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#227823 - 05/30/08 01:11 PM Re: Why...? [Re: FormerTexan]
AndyJB2005 Offline
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Registered: 11/14/06
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Why would God, if he's all-knowing and all-powerful, make a book that's so full of gray areas and up for interpretation. You'd think he could write it through man a little more clearer being the creator of Heaven and Earth. *shrug*

Not downing it, just always wondered that. \:\)

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#227849 - 05/30/08 02:53 PM Re: Why...? [Re: FormerTexan]
blueshift Offline
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Originally Posted By: FormerTexan
"if grace is true, it is available for everyone, period."

I agree, it's available for everyone. But availability does not mean it will be accepted. There are those who flat won't reach out for it.

A


This will be my last word on the subject, but if I were God and I created sentient beings I would make sure they all had a place where they could all potentially be happy whether they love and worship me or hate and reject me. I might not be able to love the ones who hate me, but them being human and me being God, they would be no threat to me and I would still care about them enough to keep them from having to suffer for eternity.

To my way of thinking, if there is any possibility that beings I create are going to suffer for eternity, it would be grossly irresponsible of me to create them in the first place.

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#227972 - 05/30/08 11:28 PM Re: Why...? [Re: blueshift]
FormerTexan Offline
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Registered: 09/12/04
Posts: 11027
Loc: Denver, CO
“Apparently it flies in the face of some religious doctrines that say grace is available only for those who satisfy certain requirements first.”

Since it’s about relationship between man and Creator, relationship has even the most basic requirements. I’m not so sure that grace covers rebellion and faithlessness. Relationship requires work.

“You'd think he could write it through man a little more clearer being the creator of Heaven and Earth.”

I like to think that He did, and that some people over time have perverted/lied about what His word says. If God was not clear, then no one can be held accountable for any sin.

“To my way of thinking, if there is any possibility that beings I create are going to suffer for eternity, it would be grossly irresponsible of me to create them in the first place.”

So in other words, all the blame rests on God and none on the creation? The ones who spurn God and reject His word are not responsible for their choices?


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#228080 - 05/31/08 10:38 AM Re: Why...? [Re: FormerTexan]
blueshift Offline
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Originally Posted By: FormerTexan


So in other words, all the blame rests on God and none on the creation? The ones who spurn God and reject His word are not responsible for their choices?



I knew I wasn't going to be able to pull off that 'last word' thing.lol The issue of blame/responsibility does not apply here because we are talking about eternity. Blame and responsibility are finite terms describing finite compensation for finite actions. To make any being suffer eternally and call that justice, that being would have to have caused eternal suffering. Who on this planet in all it's history has caused eternal suffering?

We aren't even talking about more punishment than is deserved because the word "more" is also a finite term. Words like "blame" and "responsible" in the face of eternal suffering are simply meaningless. We aren't talking about justice here, we are talking about infinite injustice.

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#228171 - 05/31/08 05:55 PM Re: Why...? [Re: blueshift]
MarkK Offline
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Registered: 04/02/07
Posts: 2502
Loc: Denver, CO
how can we judge God on man's terms?


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