Talk Irvine

General => Water Cooler => Topic started by: irvinehomeowner on November 17, 2014, 09:32:05 AM

Title: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 17, 2014, 09:32:05 AM
This is probably a hot-button topic but with all the different ethnicities in Irvine, there is a wide-range of religions, faiths and even non faiths and I was curious as how TI skews.

In our 'hood alone, there are Christians, Catholics, Muslims, Buddhists, Mormons etc etc. There are probably Atheists too.

I think that's the one thing I probably can't understand, how one can believe that there is no higher power. I understand the "science" of it, no visible evidence, material proof etc etc... but to me, just life itself seems to be enough to tell me that there has to be some "god" out there (in my opinion).

I made it a poll just so you can answer anonymously and won't have to worry about anyone knocking on your door. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: lnc on November 17, 2014, 09:56:02 AM

I think that's the one thing I probably can't understand, how one can believe that there is no higher power.

Well, those nonbelievers are probably pretty smart.

Atheists 'have higher IQs': Their intelligence 'makes them more likely to dismiss religion as irrational and unscientific' (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2395972/Atheists-higher-IQs-Their-intelligence-makes-likely-dismiss-religion-irrational-unscientific.html)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: qwerty on November 17, 2014, 01:35:37 PM
well some would say that it is pretty crazy to believe in something you have never seen, heard, smelled, touched, etc.  and they they rationalize it by saying that that is the whole point of faith.

what sounds crazier, to believe in what you have not seen or to not believe what you have not seen?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 17, 2014, 01:57:18 PM
Intelligence has nothing to do with it.  People with higher intelligence are more likely to believe that they have more control over their fate and less inclined to want to subscribe to a belief that tells them otherwise.

Personally, I am a Christian.  I think logically speaking, it is impossible to explain the existence of the universe without a diety of some sort.  We haven't even gotten to the complexities of life and the unique nature of human beings.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 17, 2014, 02:21:59 PM
I predict this thread will have at least 10 pages.

couple question:
1. In English, can we have God"S" or just God?
2. Can multiple God co-exist?  or they dont share power?
3. Can a person believe in multiple God/Religion?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 17, 2014, 02:23:04 PM
Well, those nonbelievers are probably pretty smart.

Atheists 'have higher IQs': Their intelligence 'makes them more likely to dismiss religion as irrational and unscientific' (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2395972/Atheists-higher-IQs-Their-intelligence-makes-likely-dismiss-religion-irrational-unscientific.html)
I've read that Stephen Hawking is an Atheist and does not believe in God, but I think Einstein believed in a higher power... like an Agnostic.

Christopher Langan... the highest IQ in the US believes in God.

Not sure about Kim Ung-Yong... but maybe he believes in Johns Creek. :)

I think Bill Gates is Catholic.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 17, 2014, 02:34:13 PM
I predict this thread will have at least 10 pages.

couple question:
1. In English, can we have God"S" or just God?
2. Can multiple God co-exist?  or they dont share power?
3. Can a person believe in multiple God/Religion?

1.  Gods do exist in the English language...usually describing other religions and cultures (i.e. Chinese or Greek).  US is dominated by the the Abrahamic religions, which all preach the existence of one true God.
2.  Multiple Gods mean an hierarchy like the pantheon of gods in Chinese/Greek culture.
3.  It depends on the religion...Christianity/Judaism/Islam preaches that there is only one God and all other religions are false.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: qwerty on November 17, 2014, 06:15:59 PM
Personally, I am a Christian.  I think logically speaking, it is impossible to explain the existence of the universe without a diety of some sort.  We haven't even gotten to the complexities of life and the unique nature of human beings.

isnt this the whole point of religion?  to explain what science has not explained yet?  you had the rain gods when no one knew why it rained, you had the fire gods, etc.. is this a chicken/egg argument?  isnt the right statement, logically speaking it is impossible to explain the existence of god?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on November 17, 2014, 07:31:34 PM
One thing to consider, we have the right to practice religion in the US. This is what this country was founded on.

Unfortunately there are other places in this world that will stone/kill you because you don't believe in their god.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 17, 2014, 08:16:31 PM
i am almost Atheists and maybe a little bit of buddhism.  i dont believe in god.  however, when i go to the temple with my family, i will kneel down and pray.

on the other hand, i love religious people.  One of my friend never drink alcohol because he thinks bible forbid him. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 08:25:06 AM
Personally, I am a Christian.  I think logically speaking, it is impossible to explain the existence of the universe without a diety of some sort.  We haven't even gotten to the complexities of life and the unique nature of human beings.

isnt this the whole point of religion?  to explain what science has not explained yet?  you had the rain gods when no one knew why it rained, you had the fire gods, etc.. is this a chicken/egg argument?  isnt the right statement, logically speaking it is impossible to explain the existence of god?

I was just addressing IHO's original point about science and the existence of God.  On a very logical basis, you can't explain the existence of God but conversely, it is impossible to explain the universe without one.

As for your point, that is only true for very primitive religions (Egyptians for example).  But the Abrahamic religions spend very little time on explaining how things are.  The New Testament, for example, is completely about personal salvation, your relationship with God, and what it means to be a Christian.  Nothing in there about how things came to be or why they are the way the are. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 08:25:36 AM
i am almost Atheists and maybe a little bit of buddhism.  i dont believe in god.  however, when i go to the temple with my family, i will kneel down and pray.

on the other hand, i love religious people.  One of my friend never drink alcohol because he thinks bible forbid him.

I am curious why you do not believe in a god.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: paperboyNC on November 18, 2014, 09:10:33 AM
Arguments for a "God":


Arguments against a "God":
Title: Re: God?
Post by: qwerty on November 18, 2014, 09:12:30 AM
My belief is people fear the unknown and believing in God/religion alleviates that fear because the unknown is now attributed to gods doing. They have a leader that will show them the way and give them hope

Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 18, 2014, 09:26:22 AM
see next post
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 18, 2014, 09:27:30 AM
i am almost Atheists and maybe a little bit of buddhism.  i dont believe in god.  however, when i go to the temple with my family, i will kneel down and pray.

on the other hand, i love religious people.  One of my friend never drink alcohol because he thinks bible forbid him.

I am curious why you do not believe in a god.

same here, i am also curious why you believe in god. 
how do you know if god exist?

btw, as i mentioned in my previous post, i love religious people and i love YOU.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 09:43:11 AM
Arguments for a "God":

  • This earth works too well to be created by chance. When we find the Egyptian pyramids, do we think they were created by chance?
  • Life (including insects) is so incredible that science has not come even close to duplicating it.

Arguments against a "God":
  • Who created him?
  • Why is there a lot of suffering in this world if he is all powerful?

Well...if you believe in God, there is no need for him to be created.  He just exists.

According to Christian viewpoint, there are a lot of suffering in this world due to God allowing humans to have free will.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 09:44:53 AM
i am almost Atheists and maybe a little bit of buddhism.  i dont believe in god.  however, when i go to the temple with my family, i will kneel down and pray.

on the other hand, i love religious people.  One of my friend never drink alcohol because he thinks bible forbid him.

I am curious why you do not believe in a god.

same here, i am also curious why you believe in god. 
how do you know if god exist?

btw, as i mentioned in my previous post, i love religious people and i love YOU.

Well...on a logical standpoint, it makes sense that a god exists.  The universe by definition is made up of stuff...something or someone had to create all that stuff.   Additionally, things like the existence of things like love, creativity, and the uniqueness of human beings that point to the existence of something beyond scientific explanation. There are a lot more non-logical reasons but that doesn't convince a non-believer.

Why do you need to know if God "really" exists?  It's an issue of faith.  It's the result of free will.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 18, 2014, 09:45:19 AM
I just want to also say that I am not judging anyone who posts in this thread.

What you believe in is what you believe in and I am not in a position to determine if there is a right or wrong answer.

We all have our opinions and I respect anyone who is willing to share theirs.

To touch on qwerchete's comment:

My belief is people fear the unknown and believing in God/religion alleviates that fear because the unknown is now attributed to gods doing. They have a leader that will show them the way and give them hope

This intrinsic desire to find a solution or an answer for what is unknown, even science's quest for knowledge, do you think that indicates a deity at work? Does that indicate to you that this curiosity is proof that a higher power exists? Or is that the chicken/egg conundrum where because man can't fully answer these questions, he attributes that to a "God"?

My question is this:

If God/god/gods/Mother Nature/[?] do exist, for anyone who doesn't believe in the *correct version*, what happens to them when they die?

Although in Christianity, the belief is only through Jesus can a man be saved, it's hard for me to fathom that anyone who leads a moral, charitable life will end up in "the hot house".
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 09:51:02 AM
I just want to also say that I am not judging anyone who posts in this thread.

What you believe in is what you believe in and I am not in a position to determine if there is a right or wrong answer.

We all have our opinions and I respect anyone who is willing to share theirs.

To touch on qwerchete's comment:

My belief is people fear the unknown and believing in God/religion alleviates that fear because the unknown is now attributed to gods doing. They have a leader that will show them the way and give them hope

This intrinsic desire to find a solution or an answer for what is unknown, even science's quest for knowledge, do you think that indicates a deity at work? Does that indicate to you that this curiosity is proof that a higher power exists? Or is that the chicken/egg conundrum where because man can't fully answer these questions, he attributes that to a "God"?

My question is this:

If God/god/gods/Mother Nature/[?] do exist, for anyone who doesn't believe in the *correct version*, what happens to them when they die?

Although in Christianity, the belief is only through Jesus can a man be saved, it's hard for me to fathom that anyone who leads a moral, charitable life will end up in "the hot house".

Because it's the "fairest" way to judge someone.  People do good and bad things all the time.  People are born into ailments and situations that are not of their choosing and often dictate how they act and who they are.  My daughter is growing up in a upper-middle class neighborhood with two loving parents and lots of care.  She has a much better chance of succeeding than someone who grew up in a poor area surrounded by drugs and violence.   This also means that my daughter as a better chance of doing "good" things.

Take for example, child molestors are often victims of molestation.  Now, some overcome that trauma but many don't.  Is it "fair" to judge them as bad if they grew up to be child molestors?  Or mass shooters suffer from mental illness...is it fair to judge them on that?

Also...I think the best explanation of Hell I have heard is that it is not a burn pot of fire...it's a place that is without God and all the things that are good in this world such as love and compassion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: The California Court Company on November 18, 2014, 10:17:49 AM
If you are interested in this debate, you can try renting the movie, God's Not Dead
It is produced by a Christian film company.

A lot of arguments for and against are discussed in the movie.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 11:48:10 AM
Arguments for a "God":

  • This earth works too well to be created by chance. When we find the Egyptian pyramids, do we think they were created by chance?
  • Life (including insects) is so incredible that science has not come even close to duplicating it.

Both these arguments can be rebuffed.


Effectively as qwerty pointed out anything unknown / unexplainable to science is explained using God and religion. This is to answer questions to more complex questions (life, death, purpose, etc.) that us humans try to answer. Believing in God / religion for most people is to explain the unexplainable. No one has said this more effectively than Einstein, who did not believe in a personal God, but a pantheistic one. He has been quoted as saying the following in relation to his beliefs of a God, "an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being."
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 18, 2014, 11:57:44 AM
Effectively as qwerty pointed out anything unknown / unexplainable to science is explained using God and religion. This is to answer questions to more complex questions (life, death, purpose, etc.) that us humans try to answer. Believing in God / religion for most people is to explain the unexplainable. No one has said this more effectively than Einstein, who did not believe in a personal God, but a pantheistic one. He has been quoted as saying the following in relation to his beliefs of a God, "an attitude of humility corresponding to the weakness of our intellectual understanding of nature and of our own being."
But even a pantheistic one is still a "God".

One more wrench:

I don't believe any of the main religions discuss life on other planets (except maybe Scientology).

However, many "intellectuals" do believe there is life out there (which is understandable considering the odds). How can they believe that because like God, they have no concrete  evidence?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 18, 2014, 12:01:52 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 12:13:31 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 12:16:12 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 

If you make the decision that there is a god, then it is up to you decide which one is "right". 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 12:25:21 PM

But even a pantheistic one is still a "God".

One more wrench:

I don't believe any of the main religions discuss life on other planets (except maybe Scientology).

However, many "intellectuals" do believe there is life out there (which is understandable considering the odds). How can they believe that because like God, they have no concrete  evidence?

Most intellectuals argue about the possibility given the probabilistic chance. If one thinks that life is special to earth and cannot exist anywhere else given the vastness of the unexplored universe or in fact our own solar system, one has to be an egoist. Some interesting links below about life in the universe -

Stephen Hawkings take - http://www.hawking.org.uk/life-in-the-universe.html (http://www.hawking.org.uk/life-in-the-universe.html)
Drake Equation - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drake_equation (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drake_equation)
Ferni Paradox (against Drake Equation) - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fermi_paradox (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fermi_paradox)

Interesting debate for SETI (Search for Extra-terrestrial Intelligence)
 A Critique of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence - http://home.honolulu.hawaii.edu/~pine/mayr.htm (http://home.honolulu.hawaii.edu/~pine/mayr.htm)
In Defense of the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence - http://home.honolulu.hawaii.edu/~pine/sagan.html (http://home.honolulu.hawaii.edu/~pine/sagan.html)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 12:26:10 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 

If you make the decision that there is a god, then it is up to you decide which one is "right".

But then it would defeat the purpose if you pick the wrong one, i.e. end up in hell.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 18, 2014, 12:27:53 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 
Ahh, so that's what it's called.

And yes, I posted that question earlier... what if you chose the "wrong" deity?

Or what if you choose no deity but still live a moral and giving life?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 12:30:42 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 

If you make the decision that there is a god, then it is up to you decide which one is "right".

But then it would defeat the purpose if you pick the wrong one, i.e. end up in hell.

Your purpose shouldn't be to hedge your bets.  If you believe there is a god and you want a relationship of some sort with him/her, you should focus on that.   My personal inclination and belief that Christianity is unique in both philosophy and experience.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 12:32:55 PM
I forgot who said this, but I think I saw it on a TV show or something and someone said it's better to believe in God than to not believe.

If you believe in God and there is none, oh well... but if you don't believe in God, and there is one, oh hell.

Didn't mean to thank, but quote.

You are referring to Pascal's wager. It in itself does not prove God or it's existence, but the stacks it against the probability of finding heaven or hell against a finite loss (giving up certain things for eternity in heaven of hell shall God exist). This argument is based on thinking that there is only 1 God of a certain religion and that you picked the correct God to believe in. The flaw is that the concept of heaven or hell is based on religions and not associated with the thinking of God. If merely going to heaven is a motive you have to "choose" the right God to believe in. What if you believe in the Christian God and only a Muslim God exists or one of the Norse Gods (Odin or Thor) or pick any other religion? Just because one wants to go to a supposed heaven believing in a God is not the best thing to do. In fact, scriptures for most religions forbid believing in any God but theirs and banishes the others or non-believers of their God to hell.

 
Ahh, so that's what it's called.

And yes, I posted that question earlier... what if you chose the "wrong" deity?

Or what if you choose no deity but still live a moral and giving life?

Well...each religion has its own answer to the first question.  As to the second question, morality is pretty subjective.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 18, 2014, 12:47:56 PM
This topic started to turn into heated discussion.  Please state your reason why you believe or not believe in god. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 12:49:36 PM
This topic started to turn into heated discussion.  Please state your reason why you believe or not believe in god.

Heated?  It's been pretty calm so far.  I already stated my reasons.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 18, 2014, 02:26:17 PM
is god same as religion? or are they separate subject?

Does all these terrorist using the name of "religion" or use the name of "god"?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 18, 2014, 02:29:53 PM
"Although in Christianity, the belief is only through Jesus can a man be saved, it's hard for me to fathom that anyone who leads a moral, charitable life will end up in "the hot house".

The question put is reasonable however in defining a "moral life" you have to ask "by who's standard?" Since man's standards are ever changing you can't rely on that measuring stick as a ticket to heaven.  I'm sure plenty of people believe they are moral, people who by any rational perspective are hardly paragons of virtue. What was acceptable by some in the 1900's is now taboo in the 21st century.

Since God is pure truth and pure love, that is the standard we are judged by. As a Christian, I know that God's standards are an impossible measure that I cannot meet, no matter how much I try. Only through the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ am I considered blameless and acceptable to a holy God. It is if as at a capital trial, God is to sentence me for my crimes, but Christ stands up and accepts my just deserved punishment in my place instead of me.

God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him. Instead of bending one's life to the will of God as Christians are supposed to saying "Thy will be done", he answers the sinners request - "my will be done", in heaven as it was on earth.

There are plenty of proofs for the existence of a creator. Even at 4x billion years, there isn't enough time or the right conditions to create life out of non-life. Does that disprove evolution? Not really. Micro-evolution is evident today with dogs, cats, birds, all living things changing within their species. Macro-evolution with dinosaurs becoming birds, men evolving from lower species, nope. Was the world created in 6,000 years (Young Earth'ers) or 6 epochs (the "Gap Theory") or 6 literal days? Yes. A creator God could have spoke the universe into existance any or all of these ways. It takes far more faith than I have to believe that as a result of random happenstance over time we have complex and spontaneous life.

Don't know it TI's server space will have enough room for this thread. We'll see. It's been a while since one was locked down.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 02:32:18 PM
I think most people believe in a God / religion because of teachings at a young age, done mostly to teach morality. Unfortunately more times than not, teaching morality is done through fear (going to hell, etc.). This fear and the discouragement of questioning keeps most people religious. In fact, a lot of religions tend to fight people questioning their beliefs, but don't mind questioning people who have different beliefs.

A lot of Christian denominations believe in "spreading" their God's word, through any means and bring non-believers (could be Christians of other denomination) in their fold. Such proselytizing is more prevalent in Africa and other developing nations where Christian missionaries go in and provide food, shelter, education to people after they convert to their religion and accept their God's word. Most of these people convert so that they get access to basic amenities rather than for believing in the new God or new religion.

Some of the bloodiest wars in our history have been fought due to spread word of one's God. Be it the crusades in the middle ages, or the fights between Christians (Catholics and Protestants) or in more recent times fanatics of a certain religion killing other non-believers in the name of their God. God is one concept / word that has been abused by people time and again to control the masses for power.

Once you give thought to how most religions in the past spread because of the religion of the ruler of the region (be it Catholicism in South America, and Islam in Middle East being prime examples) it becomes clear that most people were left no choice except death but to convert to that religion.

Sorry for the long post, might be a little incoherent at times, but just wanted to highlight how people abuse and misuse God and religion for their benefit.

I think yaliu rightly points out, most people mix God and religion and cannot separate one from the other, other than the "new age" believers and "spiritual" who believe in a higher power regardless of religion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 02:40:21 PM
I think most people believe in a God / religion because of teachings at a young age, done mostly to teach morality. Unfortunately more times than not, teaching morality is done through fear (going to hell, etc.). This fear and the discouragement of questioning keeps most people religious. In fact, a lot of religions tend to fight people questioning their beliefs, but don't mind questioning people who have different beliefs.

A lot of Christian denominations believe in "spreading" their God's word, through any means and bring non-believers (could be Christians of other denomination) in their fold. Such proselytizing is more prevalent in Africa and other developing nations where Christian missionaries go in and provide food, shelter, education to people after they convert to their religion and accept their God's word. Most of these people convert so that they get access to basic amenities rather than for believing in the new God or new religion.

Some of the bloodiest wars in our history have been fought due to spread word of one's God. Be it the crusades in the middle ages, or the fights between Christians (Catholics and Protestants) or in more recent times fanatics of a certain religion killing other non-believers in the name of their God. God is one concept / word that has been abused by people time and again to control the masses for power.

Once you give thought to how most religions in the past spread because of the religion of the ruler of the region (be it Catholicism in South America, and Islam in Middle East being prime examples) it becomes clear that most people were left no choice except death but to convert to that religion.

Sorry for the long post, might be a little incoherent at times, but just wanted to highlight how people abuse and misuse God and religion for their benefit.

I think yaliu rightly points out, most people mix God and religion and cannot separate one from the other, other than the "new age" believers and "spiritual" who believe in a higher power regardless of religion.

Religion is often used as an excuse to create war/chaos but it's the covering, not the cause.  Most of the popes in history were political in nature and used the crusades as a way to filter out enemies from allies.  But that's no different than most things.  Mass murder was committed by Hitler, Stalin, and Mao for reasons unrelated to religion.  Chinese history is filled with war and death and religion played next to no role in that history.

Religion is different from God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 02:48:31 PM
"Although in Christianity, the belief is only through Jesus can a man be saved, it's hard for me to fathom that anyone who leads a moral, charitable life will end up in "the hot house".

The question put is reasonable however in defining a "moral life" you have to ask "by who's standard?" Since man's standards are ever changing you can't rely on that measuring stick as a ticket to heaven.  I'm sure plenty of people believe they are moral, people who by any rational perspective are hardly paragons of virtue. What was acceptable by some in the 1900's is now taboo in the 21st century.

Since God is pure truth and pure love, that is the standard we are judged by. As a Christian, I know that God's standards are an impossible measure that I cannot meet, no matter how much I try. Only through the substitutionary sacrifice of Christ am I considered blameless and acceptable to a holy God. It is if as at a capital trial, God is to sentence me for my crimes, but Christ stands up and accepts my just deserved punishment in my place instead of me.

God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him. Instead of bending one's life to the will of God as Christians are supposed to saying "Thy will be done", he answers the sinners request - "my will be done", in heaven as it was on earth.

There are plenty of proofs for the existence of a creator. Even at 4x billion years, there isn't enough time or the right conditions to create life out of non-life. Does that disprove evolution? Not really. Micro-evolution is evident today with dogs, cats, birds, all living things changing within their species. Macro-evolution with dinosaurs becoming birds, men evolving from lower species, nope. Was the world created in 6,000 years (Young Earth'ers) or 6 epochs (the "Gap Theory") or 6 literal days? Yes. A creator God could have spoke the universe into existance any or all of these ways. It takes far more faith than I have to believe that as a result of random happenstance over time we have complex and spontaneous life.

Don't know it TI's server space will have enough room for this thread. We'll see. It's been a while since one was locked down.

I agree with everything you said about this except for the macro-evolution part...not reason why God can't employ macro-evolution as a way to create human beings as we know it.  I do not believe Genesis 1-3 is meant to be literal in anyway.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 18, 2014, 03:16:53 PM
From the theological argument: Macro-Evolution is not compatible with Judeo-Christianity. Man was created in the image of God and has a soul. Non-human life does not have a soul (with regrets I say this as I am an animal lover). Because of this, man cannot evolve from lesser animals who do not have souls. Man was uniquely created, set apart.

From the scientific argument - there hasn't been enough time when you lay out how long it would take to see an evolutionary leap, zero transitionary evidence, no "hopeful monsters" as some of the older theory's used to rely on. The bones we dig up show there are other versions of ape like creatures. That's a given. In 10,000 years there will be fossil evidence of the Black Rhino's, Passenger Pigeons, Dolphins and other exitinct animals, but that doesn't mean unique species lines sprung from them. To a Creationist, the "Lucy's" and other fossil records are simply additional versions of species we have around today that just didn't make it.

Out of order comes chaos, not the other way around as far as I can tell.   
 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 03:29:49 PM
From the theological argument: Macro-Evolution is not compatible with Judeo-Christianity. Man was created in the image of God and has a soul. Non-human life does not have a soul (with regrets I say this as I am an animal lover). Because of this, man cannot evolve from lesser animals who do not have souls. Man was uniquely created, set apart.

From the scientific argument - there hasn't been enough time when you lay out how long it would take to see an evolutionary leap, zero transitionary evidence, no "hopeful monsters" as some of the older theory's used to rely on. The bones we dig up show there are other versions of ape like creatures. That's a given. In 10,000 years there will be fossil evidence of the Black Rhino's, Passenger Pigeons, Dolphins and other exitinct animals, but that doesn't mean unique species lines sprung from them. To a Creationist, the "Lucy's" and other fossil records are simply additional versions of species we have around today that just didn't make it.

Out of order comes chaos, not the other way around as far as I can tell.

Only if you read Genesis literally.  There are clear fossil records of Neanderthal and Homo erectus....yet they no longer exist today.  If you believe homo sapiens are what is meant as "man" in the Bible...what happened to those others?  Scientific evidence is also pretty clear that Neanderthals and Homo Sapien split off from a common ancestor about 500,000 years ago...you can see the transition from apes to homo sapiens physiologically...not so much mentally/psychologically.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_evolution

I'm not a natural historian but if 95 percent of the scientific community is in agreement, I'm going with that until there is reason to consider the alternative.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creation%E2%80%93evolution_controversy

Again...the mechanism in which the modern day homo sapien developed can be evolutionary.  Once the development occurred, homo sapiens are very different from all other species for some unknown reason...that is the God factor.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 04:22:07 PM
Again...the mechanism in which the modern day homo sapien developed can be evolutionary.  Once the development occurred, homo sapiens are very different from all other species for some unknown reason...that is the God factor.

Are you suggesting that it took God billions of years to create homo sapiens?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on November 18, 2014, 04:30:21 PM
Again...the mechanism in which the modern day homo sapien developed can be evolutionary.  Once the development occurred, homo sapiens are very different from all other species for some unknown reason...that is the God factor.

Are you suggesting that it took God billions of years to create homo sapiens?

If you believe in an all powerful God that is not bound by time, a human billion year could just a be a blink of an eye for God.  If God is not bound by time, He can compress, expand, travel, move back and forth between time etc, then creation and evolution theory can both be plausible without being contradicting one another.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 18, 2014, 04:39:58 PM
I don't think morality, at least in the US, is subjective.

Laws and rules define can define what morality is. Morality, in a sense, is encouraged in school.

Morality can be taught and learned without religion, but not sure if you can fully understand morality without a sense of a higher power.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 04:42:08 PM
I don't think morality, at least in the US, is subjective.

Laws and rules define can define what morality is. Morality, in a sense, is encouraged in school.

Morality can be taught and learned without religion, but not sure if you can fully understand morality without a sense of a higher power.

Morality is absolutely subjective in this country.  Gay marriage for example..adultery is another. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 04:44:06 PM
Again...the mechanism in which the modern day homo sapien developed can be evolutionary.  Once the development occurred, homo sapiens are very different from all other species for some unknown reason...that is the God factor.

Are you suggesting that it took God billions of years to create homo sapiens?

Sure...why not?  I don't know why God chose to make modern humans in this fashion but he did...it's nothing to Him as he is timeless and omnipotent.  But the point is that evolution doesn't trip up God...it's our attempts to understand him that gets tripped up.

I mean, human have spends thousands of years and untold paper/ink/data to explain how human can to be.  The Bible does it in two chapters.  I mean it would make no sense to anyone living before 20th century to explain the process in any further detail.

http://www.rareuniverse.org/timeline.html
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 04:56:50 PM
If you believe in an all powerful God that is not bound by time, a human billion year could just a be a blink of an eye for God.  If God is not bound by time, He can compress, expand, travel, move back and forth between time etc, then creation and evolution theory can both be plausible without being contradicting one another.

Does the book of Genesis mention specific timelines without giving scales?

Why is it that the concept of creation according to Abrahamic religions considered to be generally acceptable by most people, as opposed to views held by the ancient Greeks or Taoists or Egyptians or Hindus or the Maya or the Aztecs or any of the other civilizations?

Why is the concept of origin of humans as mentioned by Scientology laughed at?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 05:03:57 PM
If you believe in an all powerful God that is not bound by time, a human billion year could just a be a blink of an eye for God.  If God is not bound by time, He can compress, expand, travel, move back and forth between time etc, then creation and evolution theory can both be plausible without being contradicting one another.

Does the book of Genesis mention specific timelines without giving scales?

Why is it that the concept of creation according to Abrahamic religions considered to be generally acceptable by most people, as opposed to views held by the ancient Greeks or Taoists or Egyptians or Hindus or the Maya or the Aztecs or any of the other civilizations?

Why is the concept of origin of humans as mentioned by Scientology laughed at?

I'm not sure what your first question means.  Genesis gives description of what happened in steps...(days).  The text of Genesis was a collection of texts and oral histories and thousands of years old.  Their understanding of timeline and scale would be much different than ours.

It's generally acceptable because they're the most popular religions.  Many of the explanations offered by the Greeks/Egyptians/Mayans have been debunked.

I don't know anything about scientology so I can't speak to that.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 05:10:19 PM
I don't think morality, at least in the US, is subjective.

Laws and rules define can define what morality is. Morality, in a sense, is encouraged in school.

Morality can be taught and learned without religion, but not sure if you can fully understand morality without a sense of a higher power.

In today's age, you are correct that morality can be taught and learned without religion. But when most ancient religions were invented there was no real concept of law. Most religions at their core define values to live by, e.g. the ten commandments. Most religions have the same fundamental teachings / morals. A lot of our modern day laws take into account morals / values based in religion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 05:14:16 PM
I'm not sure what your first question means.  Genesis gives description of what happened in steps...(days).  The text of Genesis was a collection of texts and oral histories and thousands of years old.  Their understanding of timeline and scale would be much different than ours.

It's generally acceptable because they're the most popular religions.  Many of the explanations offered by the Greeks/Egyptians/Mayans have been debunked.

I don't know anything about scientology so I can't speak to that.

Based on your link, time scales for each day are vastly different. One day it is a few billion years, v/s another being just a few million years. This would be not hold out in any scientific publication.

Popular doesn't real equal true. How are the Greek/Egyptians/Mayan belief's debunked?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 05:28:42 PM
I'm not sure what your first question means.  Genesis gives description of what happened in steps...(days).  The text of Genesis was a collection of texts and oral histories and thousands of years old.  Their understanding of timeline and scale would be much different than ours.

It's generally acceptable because they're the most popular religions.  Many of the explanations offered by the Greeks/Egyptians/Mayans have been debunked.

I don't know anything about scientology so I can't speak to that.

Based on your link, time scales for each day are vastly different. One day it is a few billion years, v/s another being just a few million years. This would be not hold out in any scientific publication.

Popular doesn't real equal true. How are the Greek/Egyptians/Mayan belief's debunked?

It's not a scientific treatise.  The fact that the description lines up with our scientific understanding of the creation of the universe is pretty darn amazing. 

The Bible spends about 2 chapters on the creation of the world and basically doesn't deal with it much thereafter.  Again, why would people writing this document 3-4 thousand years ago need to "match up" years with description?  We're talking about stages of development...not specific time frames.  Scientists breakup the development of the universe, Earth, and life in ages that of different time frame/years. 

I can't go through every part for the Greeks for example thought that the sun was carried on a chariot and and driven across the sky every day.  They also thought that the world was held up by Atlas and that winter was created because Persephone had to go back to the underworld

Egyptians thought that the world was an endless expanse of water with a flat earth.  The sun is basically Ra traveling through the sky and stars are the other deities that Ra spits out at night.

Mayan religion is not as well known and super complicated but basically a lot of deities turning into the sun, moon, the earth, and other things.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 18, 2014, 05:46:11 PM
Every belief system has their origin story. The non-religious have theirs as do the religious. Here's one thing that struck me as a reasonable proof for creation a few months ago:

From Genesis 1:2-3 (NASB)

"The Earth was formless and void, and the darkeness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters. Then God said "Let there be light" and there was light."

This used to get plenty of laughs - "How can there be water and no sun!" Then this came along in September:

http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-old-water-on-earth-20140923-story.html (http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-old-water-on-earth-20140923-story.html)

So all in all, for a Bronze Age shepherd to go and invent this creation story out of thin air as some think Moses did, he seems to be getting fairly accurate to what science is finally able to confirm day by day.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 18, 2014, 05:50:53 PM
It's not a scientific treatise.  The fact that the description lines up with our scientific understanding of the creation of the universe is pretty darn amazing. 

The Bible spends about 2 chapters on the creation of the world and basically doesn't deal with it much thereafter.  Again, why would people writing this document 3-4 thousand years ago need to "match up" years with description?  We're talking about stages of development...not specific time frames.  Scientists breakup the development of the universe, Earth, and life in ages that of different time frame/years. 

I can't go through every part for the Greeks for example thought that the sun was carried on a chariot and and driven across the sky every day.  They also thought that the world was held up by Atlas and that winter was created because Persephone had to go back to the underworld

Egyptians thought that the world was an endless expanse of water with a flat earth.  The sun is basically Ra traveling through the sky and stars are the other deities that Ra spits out at night.

Mayan religion is not as well known and super complicated but basically a lot of deities turning into the sun, moon, the earth, and other things.

Anything can be written to prove after the fact by twisting timeline. This is exactly how psychics "know" everything, putting things generally and letting the person fill in the blanks.

As you very well demonstrate, if you take any scripture / text literally it falls flat on it's head. This eventually applies to any scripture for any religion. Just like you take your interpretation of the Book of Genesis and make it fit just right so that it looks more believable, one can do the same for any text and come up with a reasonable explanation.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 18, 2014, 05:55:16 PM
It's not a scientific treatise.  The fact that the description lines up with our scientific understanding of the creation of the universe is pretty darn amazing. 

The Bible spends about 2 chapters on the creation of the world and basically doesn't deal with it much thereafter.  Again, why would people writing this document 3-4 thousand years ago need to "match up" years with description?  We're talking about stages of development...not specific time frames.  Scientists breakup the development of the universe, Earth, and life in ages that of different time frame/years. 

I can't go through every part for the Greeks for example thought that the sun was carried on a chariot and and driven across the sky every day.  They also thought that the world was held up by Atlas and that winter was created because Persephone had to go back to the underworld

Egyptians thought that the world was an endless expanse of water with a flat earth.  The sun is basically Ra traveling through the sky and stars are the other deities that Ra spits out at night.

Mayan religion is not as well known and super complicated but basically a lot of deities turning into the sun, moon, the earth, and other things.

Anything can be written to prove after the fact by twisting timeline. This is exactly how psychics "know" everything, putting things generally and letting the person fill in the blanks.

As you very well demonstrate, if you take any scripture / text literally it falls flat on it's head. This eventually applies to any scripture for any religion. Just like you take your interpretation of the Book of Genesis and make it fit just right so that it looks more believable, one can do the same for any text and come up with a reasonable explanation.

So rather than accepting that we have a finite knowledge of things, you just toss away the explanation?  Again...the text of Genesis is 4,000 to 5,000 years old...it predicts the origins of the Universe and Earth pretty darn well...that seems pretty lucky.  What part of my explanation falls flat?  Where do I stretch out any reason or explanation? 

Actually, most "psychics" uses suggestive language and coaxing to get information out of the people.  That has nothing to do with hindsight knowledge.   

Please find any other religious explanation of the origins of the world that would line up with our current understanding of the universe or any scientific fact that we have uncover that contradicts or is contradicted by the Bible.

But in reality, we can talk about this matter for years and never come to a resolution because it's really whether you believe or not.  If you don't, you're not going to accept any explanation.  If you do, you are willing to accept those explanations.  It's not a matter of "right" or "wrong" but just human nature. 

Yet, those issues are a small fraction of what it means for me to be a Christian...as Soylent Green has stated, the concept of Christianity is unique in its views on salvation and grace.  It does not require the accomplishment of certain tasks or standards.  No one is more worthy or have a better chance at salvation than another...it's as equal as it gets.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 18, 2014, 11:35:53 PM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7Gx1Pv02w3Q
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 09:15:44 AM
God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him.
I don't think I said God would send them there, my question was would he allow them to end up there if they chose to worship the "wrong" God?

As I said before, many Christians feel the only way into the good place is belief in Jesus, but for those who don't believe in him but do believe in God (like Jewish and Islamic religions), what happens to them?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 09:24:26 AM
God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him.
I don't think I said God would send them there, my question was would he allow them to end up there if they chose to worship the "wrong" God?

As I said before, many Christians feel the only way into the good place is belief in Jesus, but for those who don't believe in him but do believe in God (like Jewish and Islamic religions), what happens to them?

because they chose not to be with God.   God wants to have a relationship with every human but if s/he chooses not to have that relationship, God is not going to force it.   They just end up in a place where God and all his goodness do not exist (i.e. love, compassion, empathy, etc.).
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 20, 2014, 09:35:43 AM
God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him.
I don't think I said God would send them there, my question was would he allow them to end up there if they chose to worship the "wrong" God?

As I said before, many Christians feel the only way into the good place is belief in Jesus, but for those who don't believe in him but do believe in God (like Jewish and Islamic religions), what happens to them?

because they chose not to be with God.   God wants to have a relationship with every human but if s/he chooses not to have that relationship, God is not going to force it.   They just end up in a place where God and all his goodness do not exist (i.e. love, compassion, empathy, etc.).

we really need to separate god and religious.  reading this post i dont know if god does not allow non-believer or christian does not allow non-believer in the good place.

also a quick question, if hilter is a christian, will he be a in the good place right now?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 09:44:36 AM
God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him.
I don't think I said God would send them there, my question was would he allow them to end up there if they chose to worship the "wrong" God?

As I said before, many Christians feel the only way into the good place is belief in Jesus, but for those who don't believe in him but do believe in God (like Jewish and Islamic religions), what happens to them?

because they chose not to be with God.   God wants to have a relationship with every human but if s/he chooses not to have that relationship, God is not going to force it.   They just end up in a place where God and all his goodness do not exist (i.e. love, compassion, empathy, etc.).

we really need to separate god and religious.  reading this post i dont know if god does not allow non-believer or christian does not allow non-believer in the good place.

also a quick question, if hilter is a christian, will he be a in the good place right now?

Well...if you are a Christian, the Bible is the word of God and it clearly separates those would believe in Christ as their savior to those who don't.   The former group is saved and will spend eternity with God.  The latter does not.  I also believe those who never had the opportunity to choose, i.e. mentality handicapped, children, etc, will be saved.

If Hitler truly believed Christ to be his savior, then yes he would be in the "good place".  That's because salvation for Christian is not based on works, good or bad.  You can't earn your way into salvation, just like you can't earn your way out of it.  There is one qualification, whether you truly believe Christ to be your savior. 

Of course, just because you call yourself a Christian, doesn't mean you are.  The true test is in your heart and between you and God. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on November 20, 2014, 09:57:55 AM
My two cents:

I believe in an all-knowing God that knows our thought and heart to the last details.  Thus, with regards to what is going to happen to me in the afterlife, it is between God and me.  With that being said, I would not dare to judge what will happen to others (even the professed Christians) because only God knows their heart.  I also believe in a just and merciful God (way beyond our own standard of mercy and justice) so I would not worry about the "others or exceptions" as I believe God will not treat them unjustly in the afterlife for God knows their true heart and intents.

So I guess the more important question (rather than the what if scenarios) is: are you truly at peace with God deep within knowing God knows everything ?  You cannot hedge your bet with God nor can you try to argue your way out and hope to win against God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 20, 2014, 10:00:18 AM
All people are through human means unable to meet a perfect God's standard. For seekers, there is a guide for people wanting to understand what this life and the next is all about. It's possible to look at all religious faiths on a comparative basis, but at some point, choice and commitment have to be made.

The God I serve is described in the pages of the Bible. It's a sweeping collection of 42 unique books - some historical (Kings, Chronicles), some poetic (Psalms), prophetic (Isaiah),  and personal (Pauls letters to the church), written by 40 authors over centuries of time all telling the same linear story. It's also deeply mysterious and in some situations unknowable, but that's to be expected. If I had to learn about computer programming, it would take a lifetime of reading plus hands on experience and I still wouldn't know as much as I should. I would at some point in time I'd have to trust that the computer I sit in front of, something I don't fully understand, still will operate as expected - that is the "faith" component that we have to accept no matter if it's a computer, a car, or which way to honor God.

Jesus isn't "a way" to God. That's not what he claimed to be. He said he was "the way" - John 14:6, and other passages describe the unique claims of Christ. It's a confrontational statement. Is this Christ someone who is a lunatic, a liar, or who he claims to be - the Lord? Every seeker needs to sort out if they accept this statement or not.   There are great "non-biblical" resources that help answer some of the questions people rightly have about a Christian world view. One of my favorite recommendations is "The Case For Christ" by Lee Strobel (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Strobel#The_Case_for_Christ (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_Strobel#The_Case_for_Christ)

For those people who decide not to follow Christ, there is only one way at the end of our life on earth - eternal separation from God. What form that separation will take is not as clear as it may seem. Hell, lakes of fire, brimstone etc are for the most part described as punishment for Satan and his angels. It may well be for man. I confess that I don't know for certain what the fate of man will be, but what I am certain about is the next life is one eternally separated from a loving God based on decisions I freely and knowingly made in this life.

There's the "what about the eskimo's or aboriginal people who never knew the Christ you're preaching" argument. My God is a God of mercy. What understanding of God peoples have found through revelation and personal experience is a matter for God to settle with those people. The question then turns to those who have heard, who have looked, who have earnestly sought answers and decided to reject the message God has provided? A God of love provides men with a free will and won't force someone to continue on with Him.

Thanks for reading,

SGIP
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 10:58:50 AM
Seems like GH and IC are on opposite sides.

GH feels that what happens will happen between God and that person, to be determined at that time.

But IC is following the Christian rule where as you have to believe in Jesus as your savior.

I ask the question not because I am trying to determine my path, I know where I stand and I have no illusions as to where I will end up, I just wonder about others.

@IC (and maybe SGIP):

So Rabbis who don't believe in Jesus as the son of God will not end up being saved?
The followers of Islam will not live eternal life with God?
Buddhists will forever be separated from God?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 11:02:42 AM
Seems like GH and IC are on opposite sides.

GH feels that what happens will happen between God and that person, to be determined at that time.

But IC is following the Christian rule where as you have to believe in Jesus as your savior.

I ask the question not because I am trying to determine my path, I know where I stand and I have no illusions as to where I will end up, I just wonder about others.

@IC (and maybe SGIP):

So Rabbis who don't believe in Jesus as the son of God will not end up being saved?
The followers of Islam will not live eternal life with God?
Buddhists will forever be separated from God?

No...GH and I agree.  GH is saying that it is up to God to determine who is "believer".  I don't know if GH is a Christian, but if he is...by definition he would agree that the key test is whether a person truly holds Christ as his/her savior.

As to your second question, the answer is yes.  Why does that perplex you (not trying to snarky at all)?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on November 20, 2014, 11:15:10 AM
Seems like GH and IC are on opposite sides.

GH feels that what happens will happen between God and that person, to be determined at that time.

But IC is following the Christian rule where as you have to believe in Jesus as your savior.

I ask the question not because I am trying to determine my path, I know where I stand and I have no illusions as to where I will end up, I just wonder about others.

@IC (and maybe SGIP):

So Rabbis who don't believe in Jesus as the son of God will not end up being saved?
The followers of Islam will not live eternal life with God?
Buddhists will forever be separated from God?

No...GH and I agree.  GH is saying that it is up to God to determine who is "believer".  I don't know if GH is a Christian, but if he is...by definition he would agree that the key test is whether a person truly holds Christ as his/her savior.

As to your second question, the answer is yes.  Why does that perplex you (not trying to snarky at all)?

I agree with IC on the key test.   On the other hand, If God decides to save the others that did not meet this key test because He knows his/her true heart and intent or He has other plans for them, what is that to me and who am I to complain ?  God's standard of mercy and justice is way better than human standard.

That's why I wouldn't worry about the Buddhist in the far end of Tibet or some other people who never heard of Christ on what would happen to them.  God has a special means to reach them.   But for the person asking that question, chances are you have heard about the gift of Christ to be able ask those question.  If you refused to believe, it all on you now.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 11:17:01 AM
Seems like GH and IC are on opposite sides.

GH feels that what happens will happen between God and that person, to be determined at that time.

But IC is following the Christian rule where as you have to believe in Jesus as your savior.

I ask the question not because I am trying to determine my path, I know where I stand and I have no illusions as to where I will end up, I just wonder about others.

@IC (and maybe SGIP):

So Rabbis who don't believe in Jesus as the son of God will not end up being saved?
The followers of Islam will not live eternal life with God?
Buddhists will forever be separated from God?

No...GH and I agree.  GH is saying that it is up to God to determine who is "believer".  I don't know if GH is a Christian, but if he is...by definition he would agree that the key test is whether a person truly holds Christ as his/her savior.

As to your second question, the answer is yes.  Why does that perplex you (not trying to snarky at all)?

I agree with IC on the key test.   On the other hand, If God decides to save the others that did not meet this key test because He knows his/her true heart and intent or He has other plans for them, what is that to me and who am I to complain ?  God's standard of mercy and justice is way better than human standard.

That's why I wouldn't worry about the Buddhist in the far end of Tibet or some other people who never heard of Christ on what would happen to them.  God has a special means to reach them.   But for the person asking that question, chances are you have heard about the gift of Christ to be able ask those question.  If you refused to believe, it all on you now.

Totally agree.  The issue is really about those who had a choice but elected not to choose Christ. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 11:27:11 AM
No...GH and I agree.  GH is saying that it is up to God to determine who is "believer".  I don't know if GH is a Christian, but if he is...by definition he would agree that the key test is whether a person truly holds Christ as his/her savior.
But that's the litmus test. What if GH is just referring to God and not Jesus?
Quote
As to your second question, the answer is yes.  Why does that perplex you (not trying to snarky at all)?
It's the same reason you say morality is subjective.

Man is flawed... thus God can't expect every man to believe in Jesus. While that may be his desire, the reality is life is full of greys, not black and white. Many don't believe in Jesus because of culture, upbringing etc etc, not just because of handicaps, dying while young or whatever reasons they don't have that opportunity. If you were raised Jewish, were taught that Jesus was not the son of God, but you still revere God, you lived a moral life (as defined by the majority) and you even helped other believe in God (albeit the Jewish way), why can you not also spend eternity with God?

This is my struggle with the concept of only through Jesus one can be saved edict at the core of Christianity.

This goes back to the whole "What if you believe in the "wrong" God?" and who is the judge to determine that? As much as every Christian firmly believes that it's because the Bible says so, every other religion has their own written works that claims their way is correct too.

It's like taking a leap of faith within a leap of faith. Not only should you believe in God, but you should believe in God in only this way.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 11:55:48 AM
No...GH and I agree.  GH is saying that it is up to God to determine who is "believer".  I don't know if GH is a Christian, but if he is...by definition he would agree that the key test is whether a person truly holds Christ as his/her savior.
But that's the litmus test. What if GH is just referring to God and not Jesus?
Quote
As to your second question, the answer is yes.  Why does that perplex you (not trying to snarky at all)?
It's the same reason you say morality is subjective.

Man is flawed... thus God can't expect every man to believe in Jesus. While that may be his desire, the reality is life is full of greys, not black and white. Many don't believe in Jesus because of culture, upbringing etc etc, not just because of handicaps, dying while young or whatever reasons they don't have that opportunity. If you were raised Jewish, were taught that Jesus was not the son of God, but you still revere God, you lived a moral life (as defined by the majority) and you even helped other believe in God (albeit the Jewish way), why can you not also spend eternity with God?

This is my struggle with the concept of only through Jesus one can be saved edict at the core of Christianity.

This goes back to the whole "What if you believe in the "wrong" God?" and who is the judge to determine that? As much as every Christian firmly believes that it's because the Bible says so, every other religion has their own written works that claims their way is correct too.

It's like taking a leap of faith within a leap of faith. Not only should you believe in God, but you should believe in God in only this way.

Well...GH wasn't.  He was referring to Jesus as well.

As for the leap of faith within the leap of faith...it's really no different.  If you don't want to make the leap of faith as to Christ, you can be Jewish.   But to me, Christianity is unique.

I think your issue is as to personal views of morality.  Christianity really removes that from the equation...you make a choice to follow Christ or not.  Now, you can add in a bunch of question and what ifs but the bottom line is whether you want to make that choice. 

Just as GH stated, the decision is made by God.  I have a certain belief as to what that decision is based upon but it's only really relevant as to me.  How God deals with others is out of my hands and not within my personal judgment (thank goodness).  As the President states, that decision is way above my paygrade.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 12:06:14 PM
I agree with IC on the key test.   On the other hand, If God decides to save the others that did not meet this key test because He knows his/her true heart and intent or He has other plans for them, what is that to me and who am I to complain ?  God's standard of mercy and justice is way better than human standard.
I would posit that it's actually important to know this.

A large part of Christianity is discipleship. It's not just believing in Jesus, but also leading others to believe in him (excuse my lack of capitalism for expediency). But if you have a friend who is Jewish, do you "impose" your faith on him because you believe that he will not be saved any other way? Or, if you say that "God has his own plans for him", do you focus you efforts elsewhere?
Quote
That's why I wouldn't worry about the Buddhist in the far end of Tibet or some other people who never heard of Christ on what would happen to them.  God has a special means to reach them.
Yes, missionary work. But that only happens because people actually worry about that Buddhist. There are people risking their lives, actually dying, to bring the knowledge of Jesus into the Middle East. Is that reasonable? Is that what God wants?
Quote
But for the person asking that question, chances are you have heard about the gift of Christ to be able ask those question.  If you refused to believe, it all on you now.
So because you heard about Christ but choose not to believe in him but you still believe in God and are a follower of the ways as prescribed by your belief, then it becomes your fault if you don't live with God eternally?

Now, admittedly, a forum is poor form of communication to have this type of back and forth, but these are not just my questions, these are questions others have asked and it all seems to circle back to the same answer, you either believe in Jesus or you do not and then God will sort it out. Seems vague but maybe I'm too dumb or not devout enough to understand it.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 12:11:05 PM
As for the leap of faith within the leap of faith...it's really no different.  If you don't want to make the leap of faith as to Christ, you can be Jewish.   But to me, Christianity is unique.

I think your issue is as to personal views of morality.  Christianity really removes that from the equation...you make a choice to follow Christ or not.  Now, you can add in a bunch of question and what ifs but the bottom line is whether you want to make that choice. 

Just as GH stated, the decision is made by God.  I have a certain belief as to what that decision is based upon but it's only really relevant as to me.  How God deals with others is out of my hands and not within my personal judgment (thank goodness).  As the President states, that decision is way above my paygrade.
Do you know anyone or have friends who don't share your faith? Do you take a stance that if they don't share your faith then you can't closely associate with them? Do you tell them about your faith and ask them how they come to their beliefs? If you don't... why not? Because it's above your paygrade?

Again, this goes back to discipleship. If others ask you these question do you just tell them "You just believe" and then walk away because it's up to God to judge them.

This isn't about you or me judging others, this is about how do you convey the message  effectively. To do that, I think these questions need to have better answers.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 12:17:28 PM
IHO:

Quote
I would posit that it's actually important to know this.

A large part of Christianity is discipleship. It's not just believing in Jesus, but also leading others to believe in him (excuse my lack of capitalism for expediency). But if you have a friend who is Jewish, do you "impose" your faith on him because you believe that he will not be saved any other way? Or, if you say that "God has his own plans for him", do you focus you efforts elsewhere?

You have a misunderstanding of discipleship.  My role to spreading the word of God/Christ is to 1) bring exposure to the person and 2) share my personal story and viewpoints.  There is no "imposition."  It is up to that person to make a decision once given the information and choice.  If that person decides not to make the choice, I respect that choice and love that person as my neighbor.

People think that Christians are supposed to convert people but that's really egotistical.  I can't make someone a Christian anymore than that person can make me some other religion.  I have to make that choice.

Quote
Yes, missionary work. But that only happens because people actually worry about that Buddhist.

I don't think GH is talking about missionary.  He is talking about people who never had the opportunity to learn about God.  In those situations, you leave it up to God on what happens.  As for missionary, I don't think they limit their efforts to individual classes/groups.

Quote
There are people risking their lives, actually dying, to bring the knowledge of Jesus into the Middle East. Is that reasonable? Is that what God wants?

I don't understand this at all...

Quote
So because you heard about Christ but choose not to believe in him but you still believe in God and are a follower of the ways as prescribed by your belief, then it becomes your fault if you don't live with God eternally?

Yes because salvation for a Christian is not based upon actions.

Quote
you either believe in Jesus or you do not and then God will sort it out. Seems vague but maybe I'm too dumb or not devout enough to understand it.

That's why it's called faith.  You have the opportunity to learn about Christ and what Christianity is about.  It's your choice to decide whether it is the "right path."  If you need every question answered before you commit then no faith is required. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 20, 2014, 12:20:42 PM
@IC, some questions -


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 12:22:44 PM
Quote
Do you know anyone or have friends who don't share your faith? Do you take a stance that if they don't share your faith then you can't closely associate with them? Do you tell them about your faith and ask them how they come to their beliefs? If you don't... why not? Because it's above your paygrade?

Yes of course I do.  What does that have to do with whether I associate with them or not?  I am taught to love everyone regardless of their beliefs. 

I have told some people about my faith and have asked them about theirs.  But I am respectful for their decision and choices just like I would like for them to be that to me.

Quote
Again, this goes back to discipleship. If others ask you these question do you just tell them "You just believe" and then walk away because it's up to God to judge them.

I would say I am a believer because X reasons...but those reasons may or may not satisfy you.  I would encourage them to come with me to church and speak to others with more understanding than me.  I would also encourage them to speak with God and ask them to reveal Himself to him and "prove" that Christ is the right way. 

You have a fundamental misunderstanding about discipleship.  Whether someone becomes a Christian is not up to others...it's a personal decision and is based upon the unique nature/experience of each person.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 12:33:02 PM
Quote
Just adding to what IHO said in a prior post, what of the people who are believers in God, but cannot decide on a faith, i.e. religion?

I am not sure what answer would satisfy this question.  As a Christian, a decision has be made:  whether to accept Christ as your savior.  It's a decision that has to be made...if you don't make it, you are not a Christian.

Quote
What of Christian's that inter-marry with a Jew or person of any other religion (i.e. breaking one of the sacred 10 commandments)?

There are no "commandments" as Christians.  Christ came to save all and to allow all sins to be forgiven if you believe in Him.  Now, you can still do bad things and sinful things but there are no 10 Commandments to follow...just mortal consequences from those decision.   For example, in your scenario, you are free to marry anyone you want but having a non-believer as your spouse can lead to many issues including how to raise your family and the values you share.  But it certainly doesn't disqualify you from being saved.

BTW:  Marrying a nonbeliever doesn't break any of the 10 commandments. 

Being a Christian is more "difficult" than just following rules because Christ talks about how it's what you think and feel that is the sin.  For example, Christ states that you have sinned if you have ever been angry at someone (likened to murder) or felt jealous (likened to coveting).  That is why all fail...there is no way you can avoid those things.  Once you realize that, you become aware that nothing you do or say can be the basis of salvation...only Christ.

Quote
What of the current pope that acknowledges other religions and their teachings, he is breaking one of the sacred commandments?

I'm not Catholic and the pope is a human like everyone else.  My relationship is with God through Christ, not any other person/human being.

Quote
What happens to all the Christians, if the God is an Islamic God or a Jewish God (well, Jesus was born a Jew)? Would you choose to be with a non-Christian God for eternity even if they chose to let you in?

Well...the Islamic/Jewish/Christian God is the same...the difference is the mechanism in which you reach salvation. 

I don't know why the latter would be a question...if I die and I was "wrong" then I would be forced re-evaluate my decision making.  At that point, it's not a matter of faith.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: HomeOwner Irvine on November 20, 2014, 12:36:45 PM

Quote
Yes, missionary work. But that only happens because people actually worry about that Buddhist.

I don't think GH is talking about missionary.  He is talking about people who never had the opportunity to learn about God.  In those situations, you leave it up to God on what happens.  As for missionary, I don't think they limit their efforts to individual classes/groups.


IC, I'm not sure if you are aware of missionary work in developing nations, including Africa. I have friends working these areas and they tell me stories of missionaries from various churches and different Christian denominations that want to convert people in believing in their "Jesus" before another church or group of missionaries approaches them. This is so prevalent that natives that believe in their gods are not given food / shelter whereas others from the same village / group that chooses to accept is given their resources. I'm not sure if this so called charity work is viewed by God in good light.

What are your thoughts on this kind of charity work?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 12:39:47 PM

Quote
Yes, missionary work. But that only happens because people actually worry about that Buddhist.

I don't think GH is talking about missionary.  He is talking about people who never had the opportunity to learn about God.  In those situations, you leave it up to God on what happens.  As for missionary, I don't think they limit their efforts to individual classes/groups.


IC, I'm not sure if you are aware of missionary work in developing nations, including Africa. I have friends working these areas and they tell me stories of missionaries from various churches and different Christian denominations that want to convert people in believing in their "Jesus" before another church or group of missionaries approaches them. This is so prevalent that natives that believe in their gods are not given food / shelter whereas others from the same village / group that chooses to accept is given their resources. I'm not sure if this so called charity work is viewed by God in good light.

What are your thoughts on this kind of charity work?

I think it's terrible.  Believers and non-believers should be treated the same.  If you have Christ in your heart, your focus is on love, not "conversion."  If you see someone suffering, you should try and help alleviate that suffering.

Again, many churches put works before God.  That's a failing of humans regardless of context or result.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 01:12:30 PM
IHO:

Quote
I would posit that it's actually important to know this.

A large part of Christianity is discipleship. It's not just believing in Jesus, but also leading others to believe in him (excuse my lack of capitalism for expediency). But if you have a friend who is Jewish, do you "impose" your faith on him because you believe that he will not be saved any other way? Or, if you say that "God has his own plans for him", do you focus you efforts elsewhere?

You have a misunderstanding of discipleship.  My role to spreading the word of God/Christ is to 1) bring exposure to the person and 2) share my personal story and viewpoints.  There is no "imposition."  It is up to that person to make a decision once given the information and choice.  If that person decides not to make the choice, I respect that choice and love that person as my neighbor.

People think that Christians are supposed to convert people but that's really egotistical.  I can't make someone a Christian anymore than that person can make me some other religion.  I have to make that choice.
You have a misunderstanding of what I'm trying to say. That's why "impose" is in quotes, because that's not what I mean but what it can be seen as.

I agree with what you are saying, however, what you are saying looks like a "love it or leave it" idealogy which I'm not sure is exactly what you mean. I read your previous answers as a "It's not my problem" but as you've explained it here... that's not the case.
Quote
Quote
There are people risking their lives, actually dying, to bring the knowledge of Jesus into the Middle East. Is that reasonable? Is that what God wants?

I don't understand this at all...
What I meant is should these people not care about trying to bring the knowledge of Christ to an area that it is not wanted at great risk to their lives? Back before the information age, that was necessary, but now, with the Internet, modern communication and media, is it? It's a question of how much should be done... a contrast of extremes.
Quote
Quote
So because you heard about Christ but choose not to believe in him but you still believe in God and are a follower of the ways as prescribed by your belief, then it becomes your fault if you don't live with God eternally?

Yes because salvation for a Christian is not based upon actions.
I'm sorry but this is such a canned statement. Your beliefs determine your actions, so your actions are based on what you believe. You can't believe in Christ and then go kill someone. So conversely, you can't believe in God and not live a moral (yes, I know that is subjective to you which confuses me) life.

So what I'm asking is can they be saved on their belief in God even if they don't believe in Jesus? You seem to have two answers here:

1) If you don't believe in Jesus, you can't be saved
2) It's not for you to judge, only God knows

This is what I mean by opposing answers.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 01:31:10 PM
I want to go back to this:
Yes because salvation for a Christian is not based upon actions.
This has been mentioned more than once and I want to understand what you are saying.  I think you mean "not based *just* upon actions".

James 2:17,24,26

- So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
- You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
- For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on November 20, 2014, 01:58:44 PM
I want to go back to this:
Yes because salvation for a Christian is not based upon actions.
This has been mentioned more than once and I want to understand what you are saying.  I think you mean "not based *just* upon actions".

James 2:17,24,26

- So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
- You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
- For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.


IHO, I have to respectfully disagree with you on this.   I believe it is by faith alone (true faith between you and God).   Action/Works is just the byproduct of your faith.   If you have no action/work, can you really see face to face with Christ and say you have faith ?

Now if you say you need faith and action, now you are trying to put a human standard.  Would the person with faith but little action be saved ?  How little is little ?  where do you draw the line ?  Now you are turning the focus on the action rather than the faith.   I believe God gave us different talent and expects different things from us based on what He has given. 

Again, it is between you and God and not by any human standard or perception.  God knows your heart.  IF you can truly say that you have exercise your faith to the best of what was given you, then you should have nothing to worry.



Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 02:06:37 PM
@GH:

What is faith without action?

As IC said about discipleship, your life, your example... is a testament to your faith.

Maybe it's just perspective or miscommunication, but "action" to me is how you live your life... you can't NOT do that.
IF you can truly say that you have exercise your faith to the best of what was given you, then you should have nothing to worry.
Isn't "exercising your faith" action?

I think there is a disconnect here. So are you telling me that James was wrong?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on November 20, 2014, 02:33:03 PM
@GH:

What is faith without action?

As IC said about discipleship, your life, your example... is a testament to your faith.

Maybe it's just perspective or miscommunication, but "action" to me is how you live your life... you can't NOT do that.
IF you can truly say that you have exercise your faith to the best of what was given you, then you should have nothing to worry.
Isn't "exercising your faith" action?

I think there is a disconnect here. So are you telling me that James was wrong?

This is a very bad analogy I think but this is the only thing I can think of for now.

You just did your oath of allegiance to become a US citizen.  That's all you need to become a citizen (of course apart from passing other legal requirements).  As a citizen, It is your duty to "support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic" etc etc  .. Is that a requirement ?  No it is not. you can be US citizen without ever the intent of doing that if the time come, but the US government does not know your heart / true intent.

Same thing with being a Christian, but since God knows everything, you cannot be a Christian in paper only.  Your faith in Christ is all that is needed.  It is your duty to follow Christ, but not being able to do certain actions/works won't disqualify you from being a Christian, but if you are doing the works/actions of a Christian, you have a lot of explaining to do to an all-knowing God.   Thus, it is NOT a requirement.. it is more of a duty or byproduct of your faith.



Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 20, 2014, 02:51:10 PM
On the "faith/works" question: One can call themselves a chef, but until you prepare a meal for someone, are you really someone who can cook?

A Christian is saved by faith alone. Works are an outgrowth of that faith. How do I know this? The Thief on the cross didn't have much time to perform works, but by his sole profession of faith, Christ welcomed him into paradise.

Thanks for keeping the dialogue going, and civil. Iron does in fact sharpen iron.

My .02c
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 20, 2014, 03:33:40 PM
I was waiting for the thief on the cross example.

I think the point I am trying to get across is "the by faith alone" is somewhat misleading. I understand what it means but I've seen many a "Christians" who use that as an excuse to do things that is either against their faith, or wrong but claim it's for their faith (like the Crusades or even HOI's missionary example). To me, faith is a journey, not a one time event and we constantly have to practice and develop our faith.

As humans, our works, our actions... are a representation (not a byproduct) of our faith or beliefs. And maybe because I am of the belief that mankind is mostly "good", it's interesting to hear someone tell me that the Rabbi who has done good things for the community will not find his way into eternal life with God... or the Muslim kids I play basketball with who are very devout in their faith, will not have the same afterlife as Christians.

It's been said here many times that we can't make that call because as humans we can't judge other humans, but if you are in the position where your faith says that no one can enter the Kingdom but through Christ, isn't that a form of "judgement"?

Does this mean yaliu will not be there? Even though he loves everyone?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 20, 2014, 04:30:15 PM
As humans, our works, our actions... are a representation (not a byproduct) of our faith or beliefs. And maybe because I am of the belief that mankind is mostly "good", it's interesting to hear someone tell me that the Rabbi who has done good things for the community will not find his way into eternal life with God... or the Muslim kids I play basketball with who are very devout in their faith, will not have the same afterlife as Christians.

Fortunately, this decision on the afterlife isn't left to me as I could make wrong ones pretty easily.

The question isn't what I think or what anyone else thinks about the afterlife, it's what God says. All paths do not lead to God - if they did, there would be no such thing as justice or truth. There isn't a "Christian" path or a "XYZ" path, but only the one God has laid out. That pathway is through Christ and Christ alone. It's a decision everyone has to face at one point or another. People have the free will to believe in anything they wish, but ones faith hopefully is an informed one. The Rabbi you speak about believes that Christians are lost. The Muslim believes that the Christian is lost. Christians believe both the Rabbi and the Muslim are lost. Many people have looked into religion, found it lacking and become Atheists. That happens with free will and because every religion conflicts with each other. Does that mean that a person who is spiritual will be given eternal life? It's not my call (judgement), but God's.

Christians are called to be good witnesses to the unchurched and unsaved - to attract, rather than repel people to Christ. We don't see it as often as we'd like, but that doesn't mean the message is false. We can still befriend the Rabbi and the Muslim, but we should also express our faith in actions and at appropriate times by words - to live in the world but not be of the world.

My .02c
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 20, 2014, 05:03:44 PM
The James quote is a major departure point between Catholics and Protestants.  Some believe that you need to do good works to demonstrate your faith.  Others believe that faith alone saves you.  It's not an easy solve.

Personally, the analysis comes down to what is mean by "faith" and "works."  The term faith for me is two things:  1) I am a sinner and 2) I need Christ to wash away my sins and receive salvation.  Now, I can say I am a Christian and I believe in Christ but deep down inside, do I believe it?   A couple of ways to demonstrate my point

1)  You come to my house and find the door locked.  You call me and I tell you the door is unlock and you're welcome to come in.  You try the door again..still locked.  I tell you that I believe the door is unlock and you can come in...but alas the door remains locked.  Similarly, making that commitment to be a Christian means that you have to make an active and honest decision to "unlock the door" of your heart and soul to Christ.  If you truly do that, you are saved. 

2)  The modern movie demonstration is the Matrix (which clearly had this idea of free will and choice in mind).   You have a choice between the red pill and blue pill...you have to make a choice.  You can say I choose the red pill...put it in your mouth but never swallow.  Nothing happens...you can say it all you want but if you don't take that step, nothing is different.  However, if you do take the red pill, your world is never the same again.

As for the term "work," I take that to mean that once you truly accept God/Christ, you can't help but exhibit works.  As soon as you open that door/take that red pill, your world is turned completely upside down.  You don't see the things the same way and you have a new way of seeing things.  Now, you can choose to ignore those things and "act in the same way" but in reality, you can't.  God/Christ is in you so everything you think about do will be affected.  You may think twice about doing the same things you did before...maybe you see things different.  The best example I can think about is if when you have a kid, everything is different.  You think different, view things differently, and are affected by different things.  Being a Christian is like that but much more.

Additionally, "works" doesn't just mean charitable works.  It also means internal works...being a better person...dealing with your issues.  The thief on the cross did nothing many would deem "works" of any significance but he did.  He acknowledged his sins, confess them to Christ, and ask Christ to forgive him.  Christ did and recognized that the thief truly did this...that is why the thief is going to heaven.

Ultimately, the verse in James to me, in an explanation of what it truly means to accept Christ as your Lord and savior.  James states a few verse earlier that acknowledgment of the existence of God and Christ is irrelevant because even the demon/Satan knows that.  What is needed is the bowing of the knees and acknowledgment that God/Christ is in charge.  That is why free will and faith are so important...if you knew that God existed as a matter of fact, you are not making a choice to follow him.

Quote
I think the point I am trying to get across is "the by faith alone" is somewhat misleading. I understand what it means but I've seen many a "Christians" who use that as an excuse to do things that is either against their faith, or wrong but claim it's for their faith (like the Crusades or even HOI's missionary example). To me, faith is a journey, not a one time event and we constantly have to practice and develop our faith.

With all due respect, you keep mixing up people who say that they are Christian with Christ.  Those are definitely not the same.  Faith is also not "practiced..."  The only act of faith that actually required is for you to take that first step to open the door and let Christ/God in.  Now, you can certainly build on your faith with God/Christ and grew in that relationship but salvation is just dependent up on the one mustard grain seed of faith.

Quote
It's been said here many times that we can't make that call because as humans we can't judge other humans, but if you are in the position where your faith says that no one can enter the Kingdom but through Christ, isn't that a form of "judgement"?

Absolutely, but I am not making that decision.  God is and He has made a single true/false question as the test.  That is the simplest and fairest way to "judge".  It's not based upon one's honest belief or what they do or don't do...it's a simple question of faith.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 21, 2014, 06:30:19 AM
@IC:

I think this is where people like HOI point out the "convenience" of the Bible. What James said is fairly straightforward, faith without works is empty. How is it that "we can only be saved through faith alone in Jesus" can only be translated one way yet what James writes can be seen in different ways?

The example of the thief on the cross is not a good argument against this as not many of us are going to be moments before death talking to Jesus in the flesh and given the opportunity to be contrite.

You are correct, accepting Christ as your savior does change the way you live your life, your works. But I think that's the point that HOI and myself are getting at, too often there are people who claim they are saved. How many Christian leaders have you read about doing un-Christian works? Look at the televangelist scandals, the corruption of leadership of churches (for both power and money) and the sexual abuse issues with Catholic clergy. I'm sure all those people said they accepted Jesus.

Since we can't truly know what is in someone's heart, their actions is really the only thing that helps us as humans understand one's beliefs. To me, faith is practiced... by that I mean lived. Not "practiced" like Allen Iverson but practiced in a sense that it is more than just acceptance of God but also the practical application of that faith so that others see Christ through you, as Jesus said. I guess I should backtrack here as earlier I stated that I know what my path is and where I am headed... it should be I hope I know where I'm headed because as a human, I know that I am fallible and I could do things that cloud that future.

No one is perfect, many people believe in God and think that's enough, but to me, it's more than that. How many Sunday Christians do you know? How many holiday Christians? Now please don't mistake this as a criticism, but prior to this thread, how many TI members would have guessed you were a Christian (and that also applies to me too)? Our action/works should display our faith.

And just like both you and GH says it's God's decision to determine what is the fate of people who don't believe in Jesus, I also feel that I can't confidently say they will not have eternal life with God otherwise as that feels like intolerance. I think that is a big issue for me with some of these forms of Christianity, even as SGIP mentions that Jews and Muslims think that Christians are lost, I don't get that feeling. In my experience, other religions seem more accepting of Christians than vice versa.

And I think that goes back to belief in God and belief in the "right" God. In almost every culture, there is some belief in a higher power, just man's quest for knowledge, the seeking of answers seems to me an indicator that there is something greater than us out there. But this "uniqueness" of Christianity where it's not enough to only believe in God, but also to believe in Jesus as the son of God and God in man's form as the only way to salvation, is a struggle for many outside of Christianity and even within it because the world is made up of so many people and I can't say with conviction like you can that if they don't share that same faith, they will not end up in the same place.

And maybe that's my big fault, my sin. But as I said, to me (and maybe just me), faith doesn't happen during a single moment, it's a continual evolution of my understanding of God. If man were perfect, the idea of salvation by acceptance of Christ would be enough. However, we are not, that's where works/actions comes into the picture. You bring up comparing Christians to Christ... but that's what Christianity is, humans trying to be "Christ-like". No human can be, it's a work in progress that should continually be "practiced" (or lived). I understand your idea of true acceptance will lead to works but you keep forgetting that you're still human. Believing in God doesn't give you superpowers, just like having a child doesn't automatically make you a good father. You have to work at it.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 21, 2014, 08:11:56 AM
Quote
I think this is where people like HOI point out the "convenience" of the Bible. What James said is fairly straightforward, faith without works is empty. How is it that "we can only be saved through faith alone in Jesus" can only be translated one way yet what James writes can be seen in different ways?

Because it's unfair and often misleading to pull a single verse out of the Bible...you need to recognize context and how the quote fits into the narrative.  It's no different than any other quote.  People read into the quote how they would like it.  There are numerous of verses in the Bible that talk about salvation being based on grace and faith, and not your works.

For me, the interpretation make sense because as GH says, if work is a requirement, it diminishes faith and what Christ did on the cross.  I have no problems with people having different interpretations of what the Bible means, that's a human trait.  You read the text, discuss it with other Christians, and ultimately mediate on it through prayer with God. 

Quote
The example of the thief on the cross is not a good argument against this as not many of us are going to be moments before death talking to Jesus in the flesh and given the opportunity to be contrite.

You can do that whether Jesus is here in the flesh or not.  He being in the flesh adds nothing to the equation of your salvation.   Your salvation comes from your true acceptance of Him as your savior...nothing more, nothing less.

Quote
You are correct, accepting Christ as your savior does change the way you live your life, your works. But I think that's the point that HOI and myself are getting at, too often there are people who claim they are saved. How many Christian leaders have you read about doing un-Christian works? Look at the televangelist scandals, the corruption of leadership of churches (for both power and money) and the sexual abuse issues with Catholic clergy. I'm sure all those people said they accepted Jesus.

1)  Just because someone say that they are saved or accept Christ, doesn't mean that they do.  Exactly what James is talking about

2)  Even if you are saved, it does not mean that you do not sin.  I am a Christian but I still have my issues and hangups.   You need to separate salvation (accepting Christ) and development.maturity (growing your faith and developing a relationship with Him).  The first is simple and requires faith.  The latter required faith and action. 

Quote
Since we can't truly know what is in someone's heart, their actions is really the only thing that helps us as humans understand one's beliefs. To me, faith is practiced... by that I mean lived. Not "practiced" like Allen Iverson but practiced in a sense that it is more than just acceptance of God but also the practical application of that faith so that others see Christ through you, as Jesus said. I guess I should backtrack here as earlier I stated that I know what my path is and where I am headed... it should be I hope I know where I'm headed because as a human, I know that I am fallible and I could do things that cloud that future.

1)  It doesn't matter what is in someone else's heart or what their intent is.  That's between them and God.  I can only account for myself and my relationship with God. 

2)  Again, you are mixing up salvation with development.  You can receive salvation but not mature as a Christian.  Two different standards. 

Quote
No one is perfect, many people believe in God and think that's enough, but to me, it's more than that. How many Sunday Christians do you know? How many holiday Christians? Now please don't mistake this as a criticism, but prior to this thread, how many TI members would have guessed you were a Christian (and that also applies to me too)? Our action/works should display our faith.

1)  Again...saying it doesn't mean it's true. 

2)  It should but that's a sign of Christian maturity, not whether you are or are not saved.

Quote
And just like both you and GH says it's God's decision to determine what is the fate of people who don't believe in Jesus, I also feel that I can't confidently say they will not have eternal life with God otherwise as that feels like intolerance. I think that is a big issue for me with some of these forms of Christianity, even as SGIP mentions that Jews and Muslims think that Christians are lost, I don't get that feeling. In my experience, other religions seem more accepting of Christians than vice versa.

Why is it intolerance?  I don't have any disdain or hatred for people who are not Christians.  They are welcome to have their beliefs as I am.   I don't think lesser of them as people and people who say that they are Christians certainly aren't become saints.    I completely accept Christians and non-Christians alike.  Jesus stated that there really two things to do as a Christian:  Love God and love your neighbor...those two things are the pillars of being a Christian.

Whether they receive eternal salvation is not intolerance.  Christians believe that there is a single way...just as Muslims and Jews do.   

I think you are mixing up people who say they are Christians with Christ.  Those are not the same things.  People join churches for a lot of reasons, many of them completely unrelated to Christ.  People also tend to congregate with like-thinking people.  If you are an intolerant racists, you will congregate with intolerant racists...calling such a group a church does not make their views any more acceptable. 

Quote
And I think that goes back to belief in God and belief in the "right" God. In almost every culture, there is some belief in a higher power, just man's quest for knowledge, the seeking of answers seems to me an indicator that there is something greater than us out there. But this "uniqueness" of Christianity where it's not enough to only believe in God, but also to believe in Jesus as the son of God and God in man's form as the only way to salvation, is a struggle for many outside of Christianity and even within it because the world is made up of so many people and I can't say with conviction like you can that if they don't share that same faith, they will not end up in the same place.

Of course it's a struggle...it's a choice and the acknowledgment that you as a person can't do anything to obtain salvation.  Every other religion states that you have to perform certain rituals and acts in order to obtain salvation but those are based upon human capabilities and environment.  To remove salvation from those terms is what separate Christianity from other religion.

Your struggle is the need to square justice with human morality.  If a person is good, why shouldn't he go to heaven just because he didn't believe in Christ.  But what makes a person "good"?  Whose standard are we going with?  Why do some people have two loving parents and a loving home while other are born into an environment of chaos and despair?  If the first person grows up and becomes a good person and the latter doesn't, is that fair? 

What if you have mental illness or were victimize as a child and go out and do bad things for the rest of your life, is that fair?  Where do those people go in their afterlife?  Is that fair?   

What if one spends 4/5 of his life doing bad things but then does great things for the remaining 1/5...what if the ratio was 50/50?  Where is the line?

The simple answer is that human standard of morality is simply too amorphous to judge one person, let alone the entirety of humanity.  The only fair thing to do is to establish a simple test of faith that is not based upon human concept of fairness or morality. 
 
Quote
And maybe that's my big fault, my sin. But as I said, to me (and maybe just me), faith doesn't happen during a single moment, it's a continual evolution of my understanding of God. If man were perfect, the idea of salvation by acceptance of Christ would be enough. However, we are not, that's where works/actions comes into the picture. You bring up comparing Christians to Christ... but that's what Christianity is, humans trying to be "Christ-like". No human can be, it's a work in progress that should continually be "practiced" (or lived). I understand your idea of true acceptance will lead to works but you keep forgetting that you're still human. Believing in God doesn't give you superpowers, just like having a child doesn't automatically make you a good father. You have to work at it.

Again...salvation is different than maturity/development.  You are saved because of a single moment of faith...but you have the rest of the your life to develop and mature in your faith with Christ.  Going back to the door analogy, the moment of faith requires you to open the door and let Christ in but that doesn't make you automatically perfect.  But you will never gain salvation unless you open that door.

I don't know why you think that accept Christ should give you superpowers.  Shockingly, you as a person will pretty much remain the same even after you accept Christ.  What is changed is your eternal salvation and you opening up yourself to God.  It's like turning on a radio...you need to tune it to get stations but the radio is on regardless of whether you tune it or not.

There is a reason why God doesn't just take people who accept Christ right away...He wants you to stay on this Earth so you can develop a relationship with Him and to spread the word about Him to others.   It's a constant struggle between you being your old self as your new person in Christ.  Your body wants to return to the old ways while your new spirit urges you forward toward Christ. 

No, having a child does not make you dad but it does make you a father.  As soon as the child is born, you are a father/mother.  Now, you can squander that opportunity and not become a dad but you will never not be a father.  Even if the child passes away, you were a father at some point. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 21, 2014, 09:12:27 AM
@IC:

You keep saying the same things.

It's not like I don't understand what you are saying but you haven't furthered your point beyond what you have originally said.

You keep saying that I'm applying human standards but that's my point, we are all human so it is going to require that human element to understand. You ask about fairness but are changing the parameters, obviously each circumstance is different but what it comes down to, and I believe what GH and SGIP are saying, is that God is the final judge. Like you said, every religion has different requirements for salvation and you say that Christianity is unique, but are you sure? How many religions are you educated about to state that? Isn't every religion unique?

Let's break this down:

- You believe Christianity is the only path to God and eternal salvation

So for the billions of people on earth who are not Christian, how does that not seem like intolerance (or maybe that's not the right word)?

Quote
...if work is a requirement, it diminishes faith and what Christ did on the cross
And I think you still misunderstand me, I'm not saying action/works is a requirement of faith, it strengthens and displays it. To me, it does not diminish faith, it enforces what Jesus taught us... to be like him.

Just like you said "saying it, doesn't mean it's true"... actions speak louder than words and if you are able (this should take care of all your exceptions), it happens naturally. I think we are on the same page but there may be some disconnect here.

I value this discussion so how about this:

- Can a murderer be saved?
- Can a murderer be saved if they continue murdering?
- People will say if a murderer is really saved, they would stop murdering.
- But, if it's a psychological issue, since they are human, they can't stop having that tendency, and since man is fallible, may sin again... but are they still saved if their belief is although they take the lives of others, they believe in Jesus?

Yes... these are all human morality issues but as humans, we have to address them or else why would man make laws?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Soylent Green Is People on November 21, 2014, 09:28:59 AM
I value this discussion so how about this:

- Can a murderer be saved?
- Can a murderer be saved if they continue murdering?
- People will say if a murderer is really saved, they would stop murdering.
- But, if it's a psychological issue, since they are human, they can't stop having that tendency, and since man is fallible, may sin again... but are they still saved if their belief is although they take the lives of others, they believe in Jesus?

Yes... these are all human morality issues but as humans, we have to address them or else why would man make laws?


A sinner can be saved.
A sinner can be saved, but if they keep on knowingly sinning, are they truly saved? Yes, we all have a sin nature. Yes, we will continue sinning, and because of that we need to confess our sins - recognizing we've done wrong. If one continues to sin and does not acknowledge that it is such, then it can be either willful - and that person may not be saved, or psychological - a madness that cannot be tamed without forced drugs or incarceration.

Just because someone is saved, that does not expunge sin nature. That's an issue with DNA (so to speak, it's embedded) I like the thought Luther had when saying he cannot stop the birds from flying over his head, but he can keep them from making a nest in his hair. All people have sinful urges, some people recognize their offense to a holy God and wish with contrition to repent (turn away from their sin), while others forge ahead and continue sinning. For those that do, the question of them being saved to begin with, or if they've lost their salvation (a debatable subject within Christianity, but not a key doctrine) is simply one for God to settle. I can disassociate from those sinners if I wish, live by the best example I can for them to consider as a better way of life, and pray that they may quit that hurt or habit that has a hold on them.

My .02c
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 21, 2014, 09:37:27 AM
Quote
You keep saying that I'm applying human standards but that's my point, we are all human so it is going to require that human element to understand. You ask about fairness but are changing the parameters, obviously each circumstance is different but what it comes down to, and I believe what GH and SGIP are saying, is that God is the final judge. Like you said, every religion has different requirements for salvation and you say that Christianity is unique, but are you sure? How many religions are you educated about to state that? Isn't every religion unique?

I'm not really understanding this.  Whether you accept Christ is a purely  personal decision.  You learn about it...and make a decision.  The very concept of faith is that it cannot be understood or reasoned out logically.  You either accept certain things as true or not, regardless of logical or human understanding.   

Of course God makes the determination whether you truly accepted Christ or not.  But that's not something I can worry about now.  I have made a choice and taken a stance based upon faith.  Do I know for a fact that I'm doing it right?  Of course not, I believe it as a matter of faith.

I should probably pare my comments down to major religions.  I have studied the major religions:  Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, Hindu, Taoism, and of course Christianity.  Of those, the concept of salvation without personal accomplishment is unique in Christianity.

Quote
So for the billions of people on earth who are not Christian, how does that not seem like intolerance (or maybe that's not the right word)?

I think the word  you are looking for is unfair.  But again, what is more "fair"?

Quote
And I think you still misunderstand me, I'm not saying action/works is a requirement of faith, it strengthens and displays it. To me, it does not diminish faith, it enforces what Jesus taught us... to be like him.

Just like you said "saying it, doesn't mean it's true"... actions speak louder than words and if you are able (this should take care of all your exceptions), it happens naturally. I think we are on the same page but there may be some disconnect here.

Again...you need to separate salvation from maturity.  Salvation only requires faith and a choice.  Maturity requires a lot of faith and work. 

Works can be an indication of faith but it may not be.  None of us really knows each other and what they are.  A person who seemed to have lived a "moral life" could be morally corrupt in private.  Whether people find out about it doesn't change what that person is, just whether there is exposure to it.   

Quote
- Can a murderer be saved?
- Can a murderer be saved if they continue murdering?
- People will say if a murderer is really saved, they would stop murdering.
- But, if it's a psychological issue, since they are human, they can't stop having that tendency, and since man is fallible, may sin again... but are they still saved if their belief is although they take the lives of others, they believe in Jesus?

1)  Yes
2)  Yes.  See no. 4.
2)  I don't know what people say....it's not relevant to my viewpoint.
3)  Yes.  Murdering someone is really really bad for human standards but for God, a sin is a sin is a sin.  As I stated earlier, Jesus views anger as a form of murder.  People get angry again and again....and for God, that's just as damning without the intervention of Christ.

Also, the very concept of murder is subjective and highly dependent on your POV. 

Quote
Yes... these are all human morality issues but as humans, we have to address them or else why would man make laws?

1)  We have laws in order to maintain society.  If there only 100 humans in the world and we lived 1000 miles away from each other...we wouldn't need laws. 

2)  Human morality is important for our interactions and existences on Earth.  It is of little import when dealing with the idea of eternal salvation. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 21, 2014, 11:04:27 AM
Quote
So for the billions of people on earth who are not Christian, how does that not seem like intolerance (or maybe that's not the right word)?

I think the word  you are looking for is unfair.  But again, what is more "fair"?
That's not exactly what I'm getting at. I'm talking about the perception of others and how to deal with that. This isn't about loving them no matter what, it's about how they feel about how you feel.

If your neighbor is Jewish and you get to talking about religion and you tell him that only through Jesus can one spend eternity with God, how do you think he will feel about that? If he asks you the same questions I ask and you tell him: "Well... that's Christianity and there is no other way"... that can come off as intolerant... or even elitist.

Now, I'm not saying you personally do that, but this is the vibe some Christians give off. I remember in college, someone from Calvary Chapel interacting with me in that manner. It actually made me not want to engage with them because they came of as condescending and inflexible.

Let's take Catholicism with the idea of papal infallibity, reverence of saints and prayers to Mary... that's the largest Christian faith in the world, yet non-Catholic Christians don't agree with their "style" (as a side note, from what I remember, they do have a focus on actions). Are they saved?

Here is another scripture that maybe you can explain, Matthew 7:21:

Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.


You keep bringing it back to work as a requirement or personal accomplishments and what am trying to say is that it's not a result of or byproduct of faith... it is part of faith.

To bring it back to your door analogy, believing the door is unlocked is only part of it... actually attempting to open the door is important too.
Quote
1)  We have laws in order to maintain society.  If there only 100 humans in the world and we lived 1000 miles away from each other...we wouldn't need laws.
You are changing the narrative here. Humans were meant to have relationships with each other.
Quote
2)  Human morality is important for our interactions and existences on Earth.  It is of little import when dealing with the idea of eternal salvation.
Really? To me, human morality is based on our belief system, our faith. The 10 Commandments seems to be a base for morality... laws given to man by God. But I think I understand the point you are trying to say here.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: qwerty on November 21, 2014, 12:16:31 PM
i feel like i need to lighten up this thread.

(http://cos.h-cdn.co/14/47/640x360/gallery_nrm_1416261021-set_ellen_christmas_card_kim_kardashian.jpg)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on November 21, 2014, 05:25:39 PM
Quote
That's not exactly what I'm getting at. I'm talking about the perception of others and how to deal with that. This isn't about loving them no matter what, it's about how they feel about how you feel.

If your neighbor is Jewish and you get to talking about religion and you tell him that only through Jesus can one spend eternity with God, how do you think he will feel about that? If he asks you the same questions I ask and you tell him: "Well... that's Christianity and there is no other way"... that can come off as intolerant... or even elitist.

I am taught to love everyone, believers/non-believers alike.  Whether someone is or is not a Christian has no impact on how I treat or view them.

Now, if a non-believer asks me if I am a Christian and if so, what does that mean, I will be truthful about both.  I cannot hide from my beliefs or the principles I believe in.  To do that would mean that I have no religious principles.  One of the beliefs that the only way to God is through Christ.  Now, I would expect that if I asked that question of the non-believer, s/he would respond similarly in that his/her belief system is the true path to God or enlightenment. 

Flip it around as a question, what would you believe to be a non-elitest/intolerant answer?  How can I give such an answer with a belief that Christ is the only path to God?

Quote
Now, I'm not saying you personally do that, but this is the vibe some Christians give off. I remember in college, someone from Calvary Chapel interacting with me in that manner. It actually made me not want to engage with them because they came of as condescending and inflexible.

Christians can definitely come off badly...they can be very critical and ostracizing.  The Religious Right in this country is known for what they are against, not what they are for.  That unfortunately is the image that many non-believers have for Christians.  But I would also say that there are many Christians who are not like that at all.

Quote
Let's take Catholicism with the idea of papal infallibity, reverence of saints and prayers to Mary... that's the largest Christian faith in the world, yet non-Catholic Christians don't agree with their "style" (as a side note, from what I remember, they do have a focus on actions). Are they saved?

I don't agree with Catholics and they have a lot of ancillary issues that I don't care for but ultimately, they have accepting Christ as the central theme to salvation.   That is the key point.  The problem with Catholicism for me is that it can put works over faith. 

But ultimately, I don't make that judgment.  I don't go around telling people whether they are or are not on the right path.  I tell them what I consider to be the right path and why I think so.  It is up to them to make the decision on whether what I say is relevant or not.

Quote
Here is another scripture that maybe you can explain, Matthew 7:21:

Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

I see the verse again about lip service versus actual belief.  Jesus was making this statement as the Pharisees were nearby.  He was telling the people that not everyone who claims to be following God really is. 

Quote
You keep bringing it back to work as a requirement or personal accomplishments and what am trying to say is that it's not a result of or byproduct of faith... it is part of faith.

I think I will have to go back to my salvation versus maturity point.  To obtain salvation, you need to have the faith to truly accept Jesus as your savior and that such a belief means that you are saved.  If that is considered "work", it is.  That's what the thief on the cross did.

Another Bible example is the centurion.  He went to Jesus and asked that his servant be healed.  He simply stated that Jesus has the power to heal the servant, in essence bowing to the concept that Jesus is the Lord.  Jesus stated that the centurion had the most faith in all of Israel.  Again, it was the acknowledge of Jesus' lordship and authority that the basis of faith, not works.

Now, to grow in your relationship with God/Christ and become a more mature Christian, that requires a lot of work and faith.  It's something many many Christians (including me) fail to do well.

Quote
To bring it back to your door analogy, believing the door is unlocked is only part of it... actually attempting to open the door is important too.

Kinda.  Unlocking the door and inviting Jesus into your heart is what leads to salvation.  Question is whether you actually unlocked the door and invite Him in. 

Quote
Really? To me, human morality is based on our belief system, our faith. The 10 Commandments seems to be a base for morality... laws given to man by God. But I think I understand the point you are trying to say here.

Well, many cultures in the world were not influenced by the Ten Commandments or Abrahamic religions.  Some of the stuff is just necessary to maintain society...I mean it would be very hard to maintain a society if you allowed random killings. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on November 22, 2014, 09:51:41 AM
As I look at the poll results, I do wonder how people do not believe in a higher power.

Again, it's not judgement, but to me, as I see life, experience gravity, watch my kids' birth, see the sun rise and set, it's difficult to not know there is a God. And yes, there are bad things too... death, sickness, crimes against individuals and societies but that also demonstrates that we aren't robots or pets and have the freedom to live.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: qwerty on November 22, 2014, 01:02:38 PM
it's difficult to not know there is a God.

i think its more difficult to believe there is a god than not.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeshopper on November 22, 2014, 04:46:45 PM
I think He created the Irvine villages and busy setting new home prices.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: . on November 22, 2014, 10:42:30 PM
As I look at the poll results, I do wonder how people do not believe in a higher power.

Again, it's not judgement, but to me, as I see life, experience gravity, watch my kids' birth, see the sun rise and set, it's difficult to not know there is a God. And yes, there are bad things too... death, sickness, crimes against individuals and societies but that also demonstrates that we aren't robots or pets and have the freedom to live.

haha, i didn't understand what "higher power" mean.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on December 11, 2014, 10:37:38 PM
it's difficult to not know there is a God.

i think its more difficult to believe there is a god than not.
I missed this... can you explain?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on March 28, 2019, 12:21:21 PM
it's difficult to not know there is a God.

i think its more difficult to believe there is a god than not.
I missed this... can you explain?

Necro'd so me and qwerty can start calling each other names. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on March 29, 2019, 12:27:52 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kenkoko on March 29, 2019, 01:06:55 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Personally, I feel organized religion is essentially a scam. But like many things in life, it still has its benefits.

45% actually seems right to me. 35% of Americans polled in 2018 are not religious.

This also has a lot to do with age.

Americans, between the age of 18-44, 45% are not religious.

In comparison, older Americans age 55-64 , 75% are religious.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on March 29, 2019, 02:38:20 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Personally, I feel organized religion is essentially a scam. But like many things in life, it still has its benefits.

45% actually seems right to me. 35% of Americans polled in 2018 are not religious.

This also has a lot to do with age.

Americans, between the age of 18-44, 45% are not religious.

In comparison, older Americans age 55-64 , 75% are religious.

I think being religious and believing in God are two different things.

Also believing in God and living as God's people are totally different as well.

If you(not you Kenkoko but people in general) decide to believe the book (Bible, Koran, Torah, Tripitaka, whatever it may be) then stick with it. Don't try to be hip and cool start accepting all other religions because that is just being religious, not really being genuine and truly living as God's people.

May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 01, 2019, 02:05:11 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Seems like a loaded question.

The Bible is how God communicates with us. It describes who he is, what he has done (I realize the "preferred" way is to capitalize "He", but I'm trying to be conversational), and what his desire is for humanity.

I have my doubts from time to time, and I wonder if that makes me less of (or not even) a Christian... or just human.

I do want to get back to qwerty's statement:

i think its more difficult to believe there is a god than not.

So what happens when we die?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 01, 2019, 02:06:05 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 01, 2019, 04:51:07 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Seems like a loaded question.

The Bible is how God communicates with us. It describes who he is, what he has done (I realize the "preferred" way is to capitalize "He", but I'm trying to be conversational), and what his desire is for humanity.

I have my doubts from time to time, and I wonder if that makes me less of (or not even) a Christian... or just human.

I do want to get back to qwerty's statement:

i think its more difficult to believe there is a god than not.

So what happens when we die?

Having your doubts is normal as we are just humans and have limitation of understanding things only within the boundaries of what we can imagine. But since God the Creator of the universe is limitless and in charge of the whole generations and History, He understands us fine. As we doubt time to time, He ensures us again and again in His words. Where am I getting these information about God? From the book called The Holy Bible. I recommend ESV since that's the closest translation to the original script, but other versions should be fine as long as you really want to know God.

I believe in the God the Father, Jesus the Son of God, and the Holy Spirit. Three in One. This is God I believe and The Bible is the absolute and the fastest source I can know God. There are other ways to recognize God. When we see how this universe is holding together without falling apart, the sky, the rain, the sun, all the creatures from God and also how we as humans, made in image of God, communicate with this thing called "word" differing from animals and insects, we can only conclude there must be a Creator holding this world together. So God picked people from different times of history to write the bible to communicate to us who He is, what He has done and what He desires from us as IHO mentioned.

But to actually believe the word of God is not really our job. We can only ask with sincere heart and desire to know God. Then God willingly grants us the Holy Spirit, the helper for us to understand God's words correctly when we read and study the word of God. When God's word says He made the world in 6 days, I don't believe this perfect God made a mistake for us to translate in our own understanding and turn into some other number than 6 days as we know today.


What happens when we die? Well, first of all, why do we die? Why is every living creature dying? Again, I'll argue only with what's written in The Bible, which I believe is the inerrant word of God.

We die because Adam ate that apple which God told him will surely die if he eats (well, technically Eve first ate then gave it to Adam). Adam's sin brought death into this world when he ate of that apple. Thus the sin separated us from God and the separation from God means no longer eternal life - death. God though gave Adam a chance to repent and live 900+ years on this earth. But what God has said must take place so sin is the main reason why we all die. Now because God the Father so loved us, sent His Son Jesus into this world so that the Son would take all the sins of this world and put death into death. He died in place of us and rose again from the dead to ensure us the eternal life again. So God's curse is no longer what separates us from God. Now it's either we have faith or no faith. Whether if we have faith that Jesus is the Christ who will present us to God the Father as his own, replacing our sinful status as Righteous, or don't believe all these and keep living with loving our sin. What happens when we die? Those who have faith will go into the presence of God living eternally and those who don't have faith are still under a curse thus go into the eternal life without God - what we know of hell.

Again, these are what's written in the bible and it's the work of the Holy Spirit to believe these are true. Our part is we can ask God that we could have faith and those who sincerely ask will be granted as that also is written/promised in His words.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 01, 2019, 04:53:56 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 01, 2019, 04:56:33 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Personally, I feel organized religion is essentially a scam. But like many things in life, it still has its benefits.

45% actually seems right to me. 35% of Americans polled in 2018 are not religious.

This also has a lot to do with age.

Americans, between the age of 18-44, 45% are not religious.

In comparison, older Americans age 55-64 , 75% are religious.

I mean arguably society is a scam but there are benefits.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 01, 2019, 05:19:32 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?

I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 10:30:03 AM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.

I'm not sure what your position is here.

So you do believe God created what we know as the earth in 6 days or you rather believe in the science where it says it should have taken millions of years for earth to be formed?

It seems believing in the former is more making it simple for me.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 02, 2019, 02:05:28 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 02:48:21 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.

Yes, you are right. Those elements are all fine. But if it's missing the main message, the gospel, which really is learning about Christ, then that's where I see them non-biblical.

I wasn't just talking about music. Feel-good-sermons or something that's trying to please people rather than God is not what church is supposed to be, but that's what I see with many churches today. It's actually nothing new. That kind of wrong teachings have been around since the days when The Bible was being written. Christianity is pretty offensive as a matter of fact. Hiding those is not going to cut it.

BTW, worship is not music. It's every day life walking with God. And to go even little deeper, it's pretty safe to say giving sacrifice (in this day, we can say, giving money) is more fit than singing songs in terms of translating the word, worship.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 02, 2019, 02:55:48 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.

Yes, you are right. Those elements are all fine. But if it's missing the main message, the gospel, which really is learning about Christ, then that's where I see them non-biblical.

I wasn't just talking about music. Feel-good-sermons or something that's trying to please people rather than God is not what church is supposed to be, but that's what I see with many churches today. It's actually nothing new. That kind of wrong teachings have been around since the days when The Bible was being written. Christianity is pretty offensive as a matter of fact. Hiding those is not going to cut it.

BTW, worship is not music. It's every day life walking with God. And to go even little deeper, it's pretty safe to say giving sacrifice (in this day, we can say, giving money) is more fit than singing songs in terms of translating the word, worship.

I think you may be too literal.

So there is no music in your church? No singing songs that praise God, that worship his name, that, like the Bible, tells us who he is and how his grace has saved us?

What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? How is giving money more "Christian" than praying, singing, worshiping, supporting your fellow church members, or reading the bible?

As I said before, I don't think any one of us can say what is the right or wrong way but as long as what is done is biblical and follows the scripture it's a good base.

You must be a member of the Perfect Church.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:26:18 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.

I'm not sure what your position is here.

So you do believe God created what we know as the earth in 6 days or you rather believe in the science where it says it should have taken millions of years for earth to be formed?

It seems believing in the former is more making it simple for me.

I don't think it's important at all.  The key is that God made the universe...the exact mechanism of how it happened is irrelevant.  It's just a way to get bogged down on technicalities and inane detail. 

God created the Universe...He can do it 6 days or over billions of years. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:28:05 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.

Yes, you are right. Those elements are all fine. But if it's missing the main message, the gospel, which really is learning about Christ, then that's where I see them non-biblical.

I wasn't just talking about music. Feel-good-sermons or something that's trying to please people rather than God is not what church is supposed to be, but that's what I see with many churches today. It's actually nothing new. That kind of wrong teachings have been around since the days when The Bible was being written. Christianity is pretty offensive as a matter of fact. Hiding those is not going to cut it.

BTW, worship is not music. It's every day life walking with God. And to go even little deeper, it's pretty safe to say giving sacrifice (in this day, we can say, giving money) is more fit than singing songs in terms of translating the word, worship.

Why is worship not music?  The entire book of Psalm is about singing to God and worshiping himself.

I completely disagree on this concept that there is a particular way to worship...it is exactly what Jesus came to break down.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: momopi on April 02, 2019, 03:28:27 PM
People spend an excessive amount of time obsessing over the heavens and afterlife.

Life on earth is ephemeral.  You don't really have a choice in finding out if there's an afterlife.  So what's the hurry?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:35:10 PM
People spend an excessive amount of time obsessing over the heavens and afterlife.

Life on earth is ephemeral.  You don't really have a choice in finding out if there's an afterlife.  So what's the hurry?

It gives you additional purpose while you are alive.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 03:38:02 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.

Yes, you are right. Those elements are all fine. But if it's missing the main message, the gospel, which really is learning about Christ, then that's where I see them non-biblical.

I wasn't just talking about music. Feel-good-sermons or something that's trying to please people rather than God is not what church is supposed to be, but that's what I see with many churches today. It's actually nothing new. That kind of wrong teachings have been around since the days when The Bible was being written. Christianity is pretty offensive as a matter of fact. Hiding those is not going to cut it.

BTW, worship is not music. It's every day life walking with God. And to go even little deeper, it's pretty safe to say giving sacrifice (in this day, we can say, giving money) is more fit than singing songs in terms of translating the word, worship.

I think you may be too literal.

So there is no music in your church? No singing songs that praise God, that worship his name, that, like the Bible, tells us who he is and how his grace has saved us?

What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? How is giving money more "Christian" than praying, singing, worshiping, supporting your fellow church members, or reading the bible?

As I said before, I don't think any one of us can say what is the right or wrong way but as long as what is done is biblical and follows the scripture it's a good base.

You must be a member of the Perfect Church.

I didn't say there was no music in our church. I didn't say feel-good-sermons are bad.  I only said there has to be gospel preached, Christ has to be taught to people. If that's missing, people don't really need to gather in church. They can go somewhere else for those.

I do believe there is right or wrong in terms of these biblical doctrines. It's not like deciding if Delano is overpriced or not. This kind has to be clear cut and dry and that standard only has to be based on The Bible.

What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? Well, if you read especially the book of Acts, the disciples only felt good about their faith when they were persecuted, beaten because Jesus said they would be when they preached the gospel and they were. So that gave them confirmation about their faith and they were only happy. I didn't see any verse that says some kind of cool teacher gave a message and they all felt good about themselves.

I didn't say giving money is more christian. People these days tend to translate the word worship as music so I just wanted to clarify what it really means. As I've said, worship is walking daily with God. And giving money is actually more biblical than singing songs when we say worship. I'm saying money because it really all comes down to money vs. God believe or not. That's why Jesus said you can't serve both money and God. I'm not saying give money to church. You can if your heart desires, but I'm saying sacrifice what's most important to you for God. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:21

I'm not in a perfect church. There is no perfect church until Jesus comes and I'm sure you know this as well. But again there has to be a standard we live by the book and that is The Holy Bible. We can't reach perfection and Jesus actually kept saying that when He walked on earth when spiritual leaders acted like they were. Only Jesus is perfect and it's great to learn that perfection through His words. It DOES NOT mean I'm perfect. Only He is and I'm glad God the Father sees Him when He sees me.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 03:42:37 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.

I'm not sure what your position is here.

So you do believe God created what we know as the earth in 6 days or you rather believe in the science where it says it should have taken millions of years for earth to be formed?

It seems believing in the former is more making it simple for me.

I don't think it's important at all.  The key is that God made the universe...the exact mechanism of how it happened is irrelevant.  It's just a way to get bogged down on technicalities and inane detail. 

God created the Universe...He can do it 6 days or over billions of years.

You don't think it's important?  Do you think God wrote something that's not important?
You are either playing safe or not really believing The Bible as inerrant word of God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:43:44 PM

I didn't say there was no music in our church. I didn't say feel-good-sermons are bad.  I only said there has to be gospel preached, Christ has to be taught to people. If that's missing, people don't really need to gather in church. They can go somewhere else for those.

I do believe there is right or wrong in terms of these biblical doctrines. It's not like deciding if Delano is overpriced or not. This kind has to be clear cut and dry and that standard only has to be based on The Bible.

What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? Well, if you read especially the book of Acts, the disciples only felt good about their faith when they were persecuted, beaten because Jesus said they would be when they preached the gospel and they were. So that gave them confirmation about their faith and they were only happy. I didn't see any verse that says some kind of cool teacher gave a message and they all felt good about themselves.

I didn't say giving money is more christian. People these days tend to translate the word worship as music so I just wanted to clarify what it really means. As I've said, worship is walking daily with God. And giving money is actually more biblical than singing songs when we say worship. I'm saying money because it really all comes down to money vs. God believe or not. That's why Jesus said you can't serve both money and God. I'm not saying give money to church. You can if your heart desires, but I'm saying sacrifice what's most important to you for God. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:21

I'm not in a perfect church. There is no perfect church until Jesus comes and I'm sure you know this as well. But again there has to be a standard we live by the book and that is The Holy Bible. We can't reach perfection and Jesus actually kept saying that when He walked on earth when spiritual leaders acted like they were. Only Jesus is perfect and it's great to learn that perfection through His words. It DOES NOT mean I'm perfect. Only He is and I'm glad God the Father sees Him when He sees me.

I don't understand your point...being a Christian has good, bad, sad, happy, tragic, elated, excited, and normal moments.  Being a Christian makes one no different than a non-Christian in terms of experiences, just a difference in how one views those experiences and what to take away from them. 

While there are certainly description of Christians being prosecuted in Acts, there were also moments of great joys and elation like Pentacost.  Paul said to take joy in all times and experience because Christians are supposed to have a higher level of understanding and different POV. 

While I don't believe in a church that only preaches in joyful messages (I'm looking at Joel Osteen)...a church can talk about many different aspects of life both good and bad.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 03:44:49 PM
May I also say many if not most people who say they are Christian may not really be Christian...

How do you make that determination?
I believe the church is where the word of God is preached and taught. The gathering originated from the believers of Christ being taught by the Apostles, learning the Old Testament and how the scripture all pointed out to Jesus Christ and these are all written in which we know of as the New Testament.

Today, churches seem more like a concert gathering or some fancy speakers trying to be cool and hip up to date with the current trend of the world cracking nice jokes. Some places give positive vibes and some places take the role of the Holy Spirit in total wrong (un-biblical) ways where teaching and learning the word of God alone has become a rare thing. I wonder how many people are actually interested in God? Can you love God without all these nice lightings and music? Are you interested in knowing God more besides from trying to get your own benefits? I mean if you really are gathering because of Jesus, you at least would want to know more of him from His own words instead of listening to uplifting music only, right? The Apostle Paul and John kept on writing letters of warnings and commands of staying in faith, abiding in His words instead of accepting weird teachings which will corrupt eventually. Church is not supposed to have nice programs to attract more people. It's a place to learn His words which actually might scare away people.

I believe though even from a non-biblical church, there could be genuine believers who really seek God and desire to know him, which is how to love God, and God will see them as real Christians.

In this, I think each can make their own interpretation.

Church is also a place where you worship God, thus, singing songs of praise (whether with an elaborate rock/pop band, a choir, or an acoustic guitar) is worship.

If a sermon is entertaining and topical but still based on scripture, is that non-Christian?

I think church has a broader definition because it's also about community, support and worship than just preaching and teaching.

Yes, you are right. Those elements are all fine. But if it's missing the main message, the gospel, which really is learning about Christ, then that's where I see them non-biblical.

I wasn't just talking about music. Feel-good-sermons or something that's trying to please people rather than God is not what church is supposed to be, but that's what I see with many churches today. It's actually nothing new. That kind of wrong teachings have been around since the days when The Bible was being written. Christianity is pretty offensive as a matter of fact. Hiding those is not going to cut it.

BTW, worship is not music. It's every day life walking with God. And to go even little deeper, it's pretty safe to say giving sacrifice (in this day, we can say, giving money) is more fit than singing songs in terms of translating the word, worship.

Why is worship not music?  The entire book of Psalm is about singing to God and worshiping himself.

I completely disagree on this concept that there is a particular way to worship...it is exactly what Jesus came to break down.

Read what I replied to IHO. Music or singing songs about God can be part of worship. And believe me, it's a beautiful thing.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:45:34 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.

I'm not sure what your position is here.

So you do believe God created what we know as the earth in 6 days or you rather believe in the science where it says it should have taken millions of years for earth to be formed?

It seems believing in the former is more making it simple for me.

I don't think it's important at all.  The key is that God made the universe...the exact mechanism of how it happened is irrelevant.  It's just a way to get bogged down on technicalities and inane detail. 

God created the Universe...He can do it 6 days or over billions of years.

You don't think it's important?  Do you think God wrote something that's not important?
You are either playing safe or not really believing The Bible as inerrant word of God.

No...I don't think it's something to worry about.  I think God wrote a lot of things in the Bible to give people three thousand years ago for them to understand.  Their understanding of the universe is far different than ours.  It matter not to my faith or belief in God whether the term 6 days is symbolic or literal.  It's unimportant.

Thanks for telling what I believe or do not believe.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 03:46:41 PM

I didn't say there was no music in our church. I didn't say feel-good-sermons are bad.  I only said there has to be gospel preached, Christ has to be taught to people. If that's missing, people don't really need to gather in church. They can go somewhere else for those.

I do believe there is right or wrong in terms of these biblical doctrines. It's not like deciding if Delano is overpriced or not. This kind has to be clear cut and dry and that standard only has to be based on The Bible.

What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? Well, if you read especially the book of Acts, the disciples only felt good about their faith when they were persecuted, beaten because Jesus said they would be when they preached the gospel and they were. So that gave them confirmation about their faith and they were only happy. I didn't see any verse that says some kind of cool teacher gave a message and they all felt good about themselves.

I didn't say giving money is more christian. People these days tend to translate the word worship as music so I just wanted to clarify what it really means. As I've said, worship is walking daily with God. And giving money is actually more biblical than singing songs when we say worship. I'm saying money because it really all comes down to money vs. God believe or not. That's why Jesus said you can't serve both money and God. I'm not saying give money to church. You can if your heart desires, but I'm saying sacrifice what's most important to you for God. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:21

I'm not in a perfect church. There is no perfect church until Jesus comes and I'm sure you know this as well. But again there has to be a standard we live by the book and that is The Holy Bible. We can't reach perfection and Jesus actually kept saying that when He walked on earth when spiritual leaders acted like they were. Only Jesus is perfect and it's great to learn that perfection through His words. It DOES NOT mean I'm perfect. Only He is and I'm glad God the Father sees Him when He sees me.

I don't understand your point...being a Christian has good, bad, sad, happy, tragic, elated, excited, and normal moments.  Being a Christian makes one no different than a non-Christian in terms of experiences, just a difference in how one views those experiences and what to take away from them. 

While there are certainly description of Christians being prosecuted in Acts, there were also moments of great joys and elation like Pentacost.  Paul said to take joy in all times and experience because Christians are supposed to have a higher level of understanding and different POV. 

While I don't believe in a church that only preaches in joyful messages (I'm looking at Joel Osteen)...a church can talk about many different aspects of life both good and bad.

It could be my bad writing, but I don't see much different view from what you wrote here so I don't know what you are not getting. Please describe more.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:48:17 PM

Read what I replied to IHO. Music or singing songs about God can be part of worship. And believe me, it's a beautiful thing.

I don't understand what you are arguing about at all.  Jesus hung out in parties with sinners and shared wine with them.  He didn't preach to them...he just hung out with them and made them feel accepted.  Not everyone is on the same spiritual level as thus the level of acceptance of message are different.

Just like babies drink milk, a newcomer needs spiritual milk.  As one grows more mature in the spirit, one can take more solid (less pleasant) aspect of Christianity.  I do not understand your objections.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:51:41 PM

It could be my bad writing, but I don't see much different view from what you wrote here so I don't know what you are not getting. Please describe more.

Honestly, I do not understand what you are arguing.  The delivery of something is not representative of the message being conveyed.  The Pharisees were very prim and proper when it came to rituals and presentation but then spewed complete nonsense in what they preached and practiced.

I listen to a lot of the "established" Christian leaders in this country and just cringe at the damage they are doing to Christianity.  They put their beliefs and understanding before spreading the word of God.

There are two commandments for Christians:  Love your God and Love your Neighbors.   It's as simple and as complicated as that.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 03:54:27 PM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Well...that depends on your definition of literal.  I believe that the Bible is the the world of God but that each of the books/verses have to be put into the context of when they were written. 

Take your "six day" example...that came from Genesis.  So when it was written and transmitted thousands of years ago...the concept of the universe and billions and billions of years were not accessible to the common person.  It makes much more sense to make it a simple categorization of what happened and how the universe was formed.

I'm not sure what your position is here.

So you do believe God created what we know as the earth in 6 days or you rather believe in the science where it says it should have taken millions of years for earth to be formed?

It seems believing in the former is more making it simple for me.

I don't think it's important at all.  The key is that God made the universe...the exact mechanism of how it happened is irrelevant.  It's just a way to get bogged down on technicalities and inane detail. 

God created the Universe...He can do it 6 days or over billions of years.

You don't think it's important?  Do you think God wrote something that's not important?
You are either playing safe or not really believing The Bible as inerrant word of God.

No...I don't think it's something to worry about.  I think God wrote a lot of things in the Bible to give people three thousand years ago for them to understand.  Their understanding of the universe is far different than ours.  It matter not to my faith or belief in God whether the term 6 days is symbolic or literal.  It's unimportant.

Thanks for telling what I believe or do not believe.

The number is actually important (as every word is important) in the bible. "For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished." - Matthew 5:18

Is the number 3rd day when Jesus rose from the dead not important to you? From the beginning to end every word is very important and especially when we are talking about days and numbers since God must have put the exact number system any generation will understand. Please don't take it or mix down with what others or your own idea are saying especially if you call yourself a Christian.

If you feel offended. It was meant to be. Repent.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 03:57:58 PM
The number is actually important (as every word is important) in the bible. "For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished." - Matthew 5:18

Is the number 3rd day when Jesus rose from the dead not important to you? From the beginning to end every word is very important and especially when we are talking about days and numbers since God must have put the exact number system any generation will understand. Please don't take it or mix down with what others or your own idea are saying especially if you call yourself a Christian.

If you feel offended. It was meant to be. Repent.

I don't feel offended.  My faith is not dependent upon your view of what you believe I should or should not be. 

I feel sad that you feel the need to tell me that my understanding of the Bible and numerology is somehow less than yours and thus you are then somehow spiritually entitled to tell me to repent.   But again, if it makes you feel spiritually superior, it's your thing.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 04:09:18 PM
@ Irvinecommuter,

My point is simple as this.
Church is where gospel is preached, where Christ is taught to people. Is that hard to understand?
Do you think Jesus hung out with sinners and drank wine just for the heck of it? He taught the Kingdom of God everywhere He went by teaching the scripture correctly. And He did so with people the religious leaders would not even look at as human beings. He always taught and commanded people to repent to everyone.

BTW, all those so many people Jesus hung out with and healed, do you know where they went when Jesus died? Yeah, they all turned their back on Him. Only about 120 people were left at the Pentecost you were talking about. That's pretty sad, isn't it?

I don't feel more superior than you or anyone. I'm just stating what's written in the Bible and usually that makes people mad. It's one thing that people invent things non-biblical and make it as biblical things as Jewish leaders were doing which Jesus condemned them for, but when I take The Bible as written, why do you see that so much wrong?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 04:23:16 PM
@ Irvinecommuter,

My point is simple as this.
Church is where gospel is preached, where Christ is taught to people. Is that hard to understand?
Do you think Jesus hung out with sinners and drank wine just for the heck of it? He taught the Kingdom of God everywhere He went by teaching the scripture correctly. And He did so with people the religious leaders would not even look at as human beings. He always taught and commanded people to repent to everyone.

BTW, all those so many people Jesus hung out with and healed, do you know where they went when Jesus died? Yeah, they all turned their back on Him. Only about 120 people were left at the Pentecost you were talking about. That's pretty sad, isn't it?

I don't feel more superior than you or anyone. I'm just stating what's written in the Bible and usually that makes people mad. It's one thing that people invent things non-biblical and make it as biblical things as Jewish leaders were doing which Jesus condemned them for, but when I take The Bible as written, why do you see that so much wrong?

Church is where God and the Holy Spirit dwells...a church can be a huge group of people or just two people praying.  It could be a group of people confessing their sins and asking God for salvation.  It could be people sharing their struggles while other just be there in support.   At Pentacost, people could not even speak because the Holy Spirit filled the room.  Again...if you want to criticism specific teachings and churches, you are going to need to be specific.

No one is mad about what is stated in the Bible, at best nonbelievers are meh or humored by it.  People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude.  Example would be your comment that I should repent because my understanding of the Bible is different than yours.

You know who else turned his back on Jesus?  Peter and most of the other disciples.  You know who consistently turned its back on God for thousands of years?  Israel...and yet God continues to allows us back into his good graces as long as we ask for forgiveness.  Failure and sin are in our nature as human being...it's the recognition that we all sin and need forgiveness that makes us Christians.   

Jesus definitely taught but he also just hung out with people at parties.  Just the mere fact that a rabbi would sit with the untouchable was message enough, no one needed to be bashed over the head with more preaching.  You know who is in Heaven with Jesus?  The thief that hung next to Jesus on the cross...not because he believed that God created the universe in 6 days or that the numerology in the Bible points to the 2nd coming of Christ...it's because he believed that Jesus was the Lord and the only pathway to salvation.  That's it. 

Two commandment...Love your God and Love your neighbor...everything else just complicates things.  To add more rules or guidelines or things to argue about is utterly pointless...it's basically what the Pharisees and Sadducees did with Jesus at every turn..ask him technical and legalistic questions in order to try and trap him.  Jesus told them that they are missing the point completely.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 04:36:44 PM
@ Irvinecommuter,

My point is simple as this.
Church is where gospel is preached, where Christ is taught to people. Is that hard to understand?
Do you think Jesus hung out with sinners and drank wine just for the heck of it? He taught the Kingdom of God everywhere He went by teaching the scripture correctly. And He did so with people the religious leaders would not even look at as human beings. He always taught and commanded people to repent to everyone.

BTW, all those so many people Jesus hung out with and healed, do you know where they went when Jesus died? Yeah, they all turned their back on Him. Only about 120 people were left at the Pentecost you were talking about. That's pretty sad, isn't it?

I don't feel more superior than you or anyone. I'm just stating what's written in the Bible and usually that makes people mad. It's one thing that people invent things non-biblical and make it as biblical things as Jewish leaders were doing which Jesus condemned them for, but when I take The Bible as written, why do you see that so much wrong?

Church is where God and the Holy Spirit dwells...a church can be a huge group of people or just two people praying.  It could be a group of people confessing their sins and asking God for salvation.  It could be people sharing their struggles while other just be there in support. 

No one is mad about what is stated in the Bible, at best nonbelievers are meh or humored by it.  People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude.  Example would be your comment that I should repent because my understanding of the Bible is different than yours.

You know who else turned his back on Jesus?  Peter and most of the other disciples.  You know who consistently turned its back on God for thousands of years?  Israel...and yet God continues to allows us back into his good graces as long as we ask for forgiveness.  Failure and sin are in our nature as human being...it's the recognition that we all sin and need forgiveness that makes us Christians.   

Jesus definitely taught but he also just hung out with people at parties.  Just the mere fact that a rabbi would sit with the untouchable was message enough, no one needed to be bashed over the head with more preaching.  You know who is in Heaven with Jesus?  The thief that hung next to Jesus on the cross...not because he believed that God created the universe in 6 days or that the numerology in the Bible points to the 2nd coming of Christ...it's because he believed that Jesus was the Lord and the only pathway to salvation.  That's it. 

Two commandment...Love your God and Love your neighbor...everything else just complicates things.  To add more rules or guidelines or things to argue about is utterly pointless...it's basically what the Pharisees and Sadducees did with Jesus at every turn..ask him technical and legalistic questions in order to try and trap him.  Jesus told them that they are missing the point completely.

I agree with you the most, but those highlighted, I don't.

People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude.
Yes, that could happen, but I think the main reason people get mad when they hear the gospel is because it hurts their sin. People don't want to be called a sinner and don't like their sins to be exposed as Jesus did to pretty much everyone He met.

he also just hung out with people at parties
I don't think Jesus just hung out with no reasons.

everything else just complicates things
This is where I'm saying many Christians are not as they are supposed to. To love God is to KNOW God. How do you know God? By reading and studying His words. Is that a complicated thing or not really loving God? Yes, it's hard so the church should at least teach them while people are there. And also if you love someone, you would let them know about His words.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 02, 2019, 04:52:36 PM
People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude.
Yes, that could happen, but I think the main reason people get mad when they hear the gospel is because it hurts their sin. People don't want to be called a sinner and don't like their sins to be exposed as Jesus did to pretty much everyone He met.

No...most people get mad because they are put down as people and the religious people use the sin as an excuse to put those people down.   It's the "splinter in your eye...log in mine" teaching.

Jesus did not expose most people's sin...he praised people for exhibition of faith but very seldomly commented on their sin.   To God, every human is a sinner and equally bad.  What Jesus did a lot of was slamming of pharisees who were constantly measuring people by their actions and alleged "holiness"  I would say that the "sin" that Jesus seemed to be most concerned about was spiritual pride...or at least self-proclaimed/self-indulgent spiritual pride. 

Jesus saw the person...not the sin.  Just like the father saw the prodigal son for the son he lost...not for the dirt

Quote
he also just hung out with people at parties
I don't think Jesus just hung out with no reasons. 

I didn't say that he did it for no reason...I said that he was not preachy.

Quote
everything else just complicates things
This is where I'm saying many Christians are not as they are supposed to. To love God is to KNOW God. How do you know God? By reading and studying His words. Is that a complicated thing or not really loving God? Yes, it's hard so the church should at least teach them while people are there. And also if you love someone, you would let them know about His words.

What about people who can't read the Bible...what about the thief on the cross?   

Everyone is where they are supposed to be.  To assume otherwise would mean that God does not know what he is doing...being a Christian is messy and difficult.   God knows that and works within our sins and failures.Of course a Christian needs to grow and mature spiritually but to assume that everyone has the same level of growth at all times is ridiculous. 

Just like the shepherd leaves the 99 to find the one lost sheep, a church's job is to find the lost and bring them back into the fold.  A church should provide resources to allow its members to mature and grow but Sunday services are generally for the new believer and/or non believers.

Why do you assume that people are not being taught the word of God?  Again..you want to point to specific churches or pastors then we can have a discussion.  Painting in broadstrokes just makes everything dark.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 02, 2019, 06:06:43 PM
@Irvinecommuter,

I think you are thinking from non-believer's perspective and trying to protect them from a person who might sound preachy. I understand that and I apologize if I sounded like one, but my main focus was from believer's, so-called-Christians' in America perspective per IHO's questions. You yourself might know some big mega church pastors are not really preaching the gospel but the "prosperity gospel" and damaging the Christianity. Believe or not, there are many churches that preach other things than the real gospel that might lead so many flocks to misunderstanding Jesus.

As for Jesus exposing people's sin other than Pharisees and Sadducees, He did expose for that is the only way for one to repent and turn back to God. Some people, He didn't have to for they just asked for forgiveness beforehand like Peter, but for some He had to like the Samaritan woman and Paul.

For people who can't read or don't have access to The Bible, I believe one can certainly come up with a conclusion that there must be God by just mesmerizing this world and the universe. One who seeks God WILL find God for that is the promise written and I'm 100% positive God WILL open the way for that person to know Jesus. Job, David and those Old Testament believers are the examples who lived before Jesus came.

As for us, who have FULL access to The Bible, we don't have any excuses. We are given more responsibility and must strive to know God more than anyone if you ask me. I fail too. I still sin also. But like you said, God keeps forgiving and forgiving, in fact, He doesn't remember my sin anymore even the ones I will commit later on. I'm sure you know all these. All I'm saying is if we think we are Christians and have the full access to know God more than anyone, then we need to focus on that more than anything especially in church. Fellowship, dinning and singing, we can do that also, but those are not the priorities. I think church exists for that purpose. You said churches are for non-believers. I believe there could be people who will come and know God in those churches as well, but just saying we need to be careful and not forget what the most important thing is. You may agree or disagree. I pray you will know God more everyday as well.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 09:05:53 AM
@mety

I am only addressing your comment about churches and the style that you don't seem to like.  Obviously there are those who are leading flocks astray but I would say that God can use those charlatans to save people.   My view is that the Church's main job is to spread the Gospel and bring people into the fold.  Once they are brought in...each person/believer will progress on their own.   The Church should provided resources and structure to allow members to grow and mature but their primary goal is to find the lost.  Jesus said it himself...He did not come for the saved...he came for those who needed saving. 

Quote
Fellowship, dinning and singing, we can do that also, but those are not the priorities.

I fundamentally disagree...all those things are equally important...just as learning the word and praying etc...it's all about experiencing God and being a better Christian.  You can be brilliant in your Biblical knowledge but fail to fellowship with others or help those in need etc.  All of it is important...there is no one thing more important. 

Pharisees were all about the law..but forgot about the people.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 09:26:56 AM
I didn't say there was no music in our church. I didn't say feel-good-sermons are bad.  I only said there has to be gospel preached, Christ has to be taught to people. If that's missing, people don't really need to gather in church. They can go somewhere else for those.

But you assume that is missing. How do you come to that conclusion? And there is no single purpose for church, it's many things. To you, it seems that it's to teach/preach about Jesus... and I agree, but that's not the only thing.

Quote
I do believe there is right or wrong in terms of these biblical doctrines. It's not like deciding if Delano is overpriced or not. This kind has to be clear cut and dry and that standard only has to be based on The Bible.

Again, how is that determination made? Using the Bible, I'm not sure you have made your case on those items.

Quote
What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? Well, if you read especially the book of Acts, the disciples only felt good about their faith when they were persecuted, beaten because Jesus said they would be when they preached the gospel and they were. So that gave them confirmation about their faith and they were only happy. I didn't see any verse that says some kind of cool teacher gave a message and they all felt good about themselves.

Does there have to be a specific verse that says "Thou shalt deliver a sermon with humor."? Acts mentions the breaking of bread in church, if that doesn't happen is that not church?

Quote
I didn't say giving money is more christian. People these days tend to translate the word worship as music so I just wanted to clarify what it really means. As I've said, worship is walking daily with God. And giving money is actually more biblical than singing songs when we say worship. I'm saying money because it really all comes down to money vs. God believe or not. That's why Jesus said you can't serve both money and God. I'm not saying give money to church. You can if your heart desires, but I'm saying sacrifice what's most important to you for God. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:21

So you are saying giving money is more "biblical"? As IrvineCommuter said, Psalms is in the Bible and that's pretty much all music. Is there a book of Donations in the Bible I don't know about? Ok... I'm being a bit facetious here but I assume this is your opinion and that's fine but I can think of many more things that are just as or more biblical than giving money.

Quote
I'm not in a perfect church. There is no perfect church until Jesus comes and I'm sure you know this as well. But again there has to be a standard we live by the book and that is The Holy Bible. We can't reach perfection and Jesus actually kept saying that when He walked on earth when spiritual leaders acted like they were. Only Jesus is perfect and it's great to learn that perfection through His words. It DOES NOT mean I'm perfect. Only He is and I'm glad God the Father sees Him when He sees me.

You still have yet to show me that all those things you dislike about some churches are not biblical. And I agree that there are many churches that don't seem to following scripture but that's an overall philosophy, not exactly tied to specific elements in their service. I just don't think that any of us are qualified to be that infallible judge of what is right or wrong.

Edit: Typo.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 09:29:10 AM
... but Sunday services are generally for the new believer and/or non believers.

This is the only thing that you've said that I'm not totally in agreement with.

I feel Sunday service is for everyone, long time believers included.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 09:31:56 AM
... but Sunday services are generally for the new believer and/or non believers.

This is the only thing that you've said that I'm not totally in agreement with.

I feel Sunday service is for everyone, long time believers included.

It is definitely for everyone but Sunday services are generally geared toward the casual believers....most churches don't go seriously deep in Sunday services.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 09:57:24 AM
... but Sunday services are generally for the new believer and/or non believers.

This is the only thing that you've said that I'm not totally in agreement with.

I feel Sunday service is for everyone, long time believers included.

It is definitely for everyone but Sunday services are generally geared toward the casual believers....most churches don't go seriously deep in Sunday services.

Ahh... I see what you are saying.

I do think that the sermon can be both. But yes, for "deeper" discussion, that's usually what community groups are for (and even for new members).

That's something that is not mentioned here, church is not just a Sunday thing.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on April 03, 2019, 09:59:14 AM
For those of you 45% who voted yes i, am a christian, may i ask when you accepted Christ as your savior.

I first accepted Christ in my life when i was 12. I later recommited my life to Christ during my freshman year in college in Ann Arbor.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 10:33:34 AM
@mety

I am only addressing your comment about churches and the style that you don't seem to like.  Obviously there are those who are leading flocks astray but I would say that God can use those charlatans to save people.   My view is that the Church's main job is to spread the Gospel and bring people into the fold.  Once they are brought in...each person/believer will progress on their own.   The Church should provided resources and structure to allow members to grow and mature but their primary goal is to find the lost.  Jesus said it himself...He did not come for the saved...he came for those who needed saving. 

Quote
Fellowship, dinning and singing, we can do that also, but those are not the priorities.

I fundamentally disagree...all those things are equally important...just as learning the word and praying etc...it's all about experiencing God and being a better Christian.  You can be brilliant in your Biblical knowledge but fail to fellowship with others or help those in need etc.  All of it is important...there is no one thing more important. 

Pharisees were all about the law..but forgot about the people.

We disagree on that point then.

I do think knowing God is the priority and other things will follow naturally as I think if you really love God, you will love your neighbor as well. I think "seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you," verse is applied here. But you are right. God may use all circumstances and churches to bring people into the fold as well.

I actually believe Pharisees were too concerned about the people and forgot God. They were all about how they would be looked and seen great outside but inside was full of corruption. They sought after people's approvals and one of the ways were by robbing the poor which God continually warned them not to in the Old Testament. Jesus pointed out this throughout the whole 4 gospels and their only concern was they would lose their reputation and position to Jesus. Thus He said, “Therefore render to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and to God the things that are God's,” because they were doing the opposite, giving God their money only and their heart to people.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kenkoko on April 03, 2019, 10:40:54 AM
Surprised to see more than 45% do believe in God and call themselves Christians in this forum.

If you are one of them, do you literally believe everything that's written in The Holy Bible (yes, 66 books of the Old and New Testaments) and it is a inerrant word of God? There could be arguments from different versions of translations and even language barriers, but I'm asking the original classic Hebrew, Greek scripture version.

If your answer is, "Well, I don't literally believe the earth was made in 6 days," then you're not really a Christian.

Personally, I feel organized religion is essentially a scam. But like many things in life, it still has its benefits.

45% actually seems right to me. 35% of Americans polled in 2018 are not religious.

This also has a lot to do with age.

Americans, between the age of 18-44, 45% are not religious.

In comparison, older Americans age 55-64 , 75% are religious.

I mean arguably society is a scam but there are benefits.

Not sure I see your point entirely. Society is necessary for Human beings as we are social animals. Organized Religion is not necessary and is essentially a scam.

I think the realization of that is at least in part why higher and higher percentage of the US population are identifying themselves as not religious. This is especially obvious when you look at the Millennials.

Only about half of Millennials are religious. Even in the religious group, 38% says religion is "very important". ( 29% somewhat important, 17% not too important, 16% not at all important)

Millennials also see religions play an entirely different role when it comes to guidance on right and wrong. 46% pick common sense, 23% picked religion.

44% of Millennials say the holy scripture is " not the word of God"
31% of Millennials say the holy scripture is " the word of God but not everything taken literally"
20% of Millennials say the holy scripture is " the word of God and should be taken literally"

This is a seismic shift from boomers and Gen Xs.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 11:29:22 AM
I didn't say there was no music in our church. I didn't say feel-good-sermons are bad.  I only said there has to be gospel preached, Christ has to be taught to people. If that's missing, people don't really need to gather in church. They can go somewhere else for those.

But you assume that is missing. How do you come to that conclusion? And there is no single purpose for church, it's many things. To you, it seems that it's to teach/preach about Jesus... and I agree, but that's not the only thing.

Quote
I do believe there is right or wrong in terms of these biblical doctrines. It's not like deciding if Delano is overpriced or not. This kind has to be clear cut and dry and that standard only has to be based on The Bible.

Again, how is that determination made? Using the Bible, I'm not sure you have made your case on those items.

Quote
What's wrong with a sermon that makes people feel good about their faith? Well, if you read especially the book of Acts, the disciples only felt good about their faith when they were persecuted, beaten because Jesus said they would be when they preached the gospel and they were. So that gave them confirmation about their faith and they were only happy. I didn't see any verse that says some kind of cool teacher gave a message and they all felt good about themselves.

Does there have to be a specific verse that says "Thou shalt deliver a sermon with humor."? Acts mentions the breaking of bread in church, if that doesn't happen is that not church?

Quote
I didn't say giving money is more christian. People these days tend to translate the word worship as music so I just wanted to clarify what it really means. As I've said, worship is walking daily with God. And giving money is actually more biblical than singing songs when we say worship. I'm saying money because it really all comes down to money vs. God believe or not. That's why Jesus said you can't serve both money and God. I'm not saying give money to church. You can if your heart desires, but I'm saying sacrifice what's most important to you for God. "For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also." - Matthew 6:21

So you are saying giving money is more "biblical"? As IrvineCommuter said, Psalms is in the Bible and that's pretty much all music. Is there a book of Donations in the Bible I don't know about? Ok... I'm being a bit facetious here but I assume this is your opinion and that's fine but I can think of many more things that are just as or more biblical than giving money.

Quote
I'm not in a perfect church. There is no perfect church until Jesus comes and I'm sure you know this as well. But again there has to be a standard we live by the book and that is The Holy Bible. We can't reach perfection and Jesus actually kept saying that when He walked on earth when spiritual leaders acted like they were. Only Jesus is perfect and it's great to learn that perfection through His words. It DOES NOT mean I'm perfect. Only He is and I'm glad God the Father sees Him when He sees me.

You still have yet to show me that all those things you dislike about some churches are not biblical. And I agree that there are many churches that don't seem to following scripture but that's an overall philosophy, not exactly tied to specific elements in their service. I just don't think that any of us are qualified to be that infallible judge of what is right or wrong.

Edit: Typo.

Since you seem like you want to get real technical, I will write on.

Like I've replied to Irvinecommuter, I think teaching the word of God has to be the priority in church. Yes, there are many other things in the Lord's day like singing hymns/praise, reading the word together, fellowships, dinning, etc. (I NEVER said those are bad. Please don't misunderstand.) Those are all elements of the Sunday gatherings. But if you have to choose one thing because of whatever reason (world is ending tomorrow/no one will see each other again/etc.), what would it be? I think proclaiming the gospel, which is really teaching who Christ is would be the only thing left. So that people would come to a conclusion whether to have faith or not. This is an extreme example, but just so that what's most important is rendered.

About the relation of giving money and worship, let me get real real deep here since it is required to explain. You've been warned. What is worship? It's recognizing God and responding to Him by sacrificing what's very WORTH to us. When God had Moses bring Israel out of Egypt, He gave them the instruction how to WORSHIP. Yes, all those many regulations and rules to sacrifice animals and so on. We all know those regulations could not be kept, but God did give them so because He wanted His people to be set apart different which really means "holy" from the rest of the nations. He wasn't going to punish them if they couldn't keep up. He wanted to see if their heart really desires to follow His words, not expecting the perfection of human will. Anyways, those giving "sacrifices" were what was originally called "worship." But since Jesus sacrificed Himself once for all, we don't have to do those ritual ceremonies anymore. The only thing we can do is having faith that Jesus completed the Law. Now the only sacrifice really left is the "will offering," which from the original laws was granted to Israel to do so when they had willing heart to give additionally. So we can still do so by giving money. It could be our time, food or clothes anything that's worth to us. But as you know, those all require money. So this is the originated context of worship. Now these days for some reason, Christians think worship is some kind of band playing music and singing songs about God up on stage. Please remember, I'm not saying that's not worship nor bad. Those are all beautiful for I was heavily involved in music ministry myself. But saying worship is music is not quite right. Worship is everything like you said, but more so daily walk with God, devoting ourselves to know Him more, be like Him more as we will be one day.

What I'm disappointed with churches in America or many developed countries today is that they seem to focus on people more than God. How to attract more people? How to have better programs so that more people will be pleased? I think having those are all fine, but if the main focus (Christ) is missing, is that really church? Church is a body of Christ, correct? If the body does not know what part of the body it is, isn't that considered a malfunctioned? Why do I assume that? Because I've seen that happen in many churches including mine. Thousands of people attending a big mega church and not knowing a thing about what Jesus did is pretty sad, isn't it? Maybe like Irvinecoummter said, they are baby Christians and will grow more spiritually. Why then are so many younger generations leaving church? They might have been in it because of the cool music and nice feeling sermons, but once the scripture touches the subject of their sin, what would be the reaction? Would they still come repent or would they get disappointed and leave? I think many already left so younger people are not really believing in God anymore these days. If they really want to know why people are leaving it's because of the lack of teaching about Christ at front and smart younger people are fed up with programs that are trying to catch up with the world's trend. Well, you might still say that's my assumption and maybe it is. But I believe if churches were to teach gospel only more younger people or even non-believers will come to find out more about Christ for that is what the real church is from outsider's perspective anyways. One thing to clarify just in case someone takes it to whole another discussion, I'm still at my church even though it's not perfect and pray that we are pleasing God more than people thus we can serve and love people correctly.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: fortune11 on April 03, 2019, 02:05:09 PM
the problem with hyper focus on growth is not just about churches - it is every part of society now

Look at the non profit sector today . Attend any board meeting. The way they talk about “metrics” and “ROI” etc you will quickly be lulled into thinking this is a Fortune 500 corporation. 

This is the problem when society has run out of new big ideas and all that is left is “optimizing “  and chasing efficiency gains . Organized Religion is no exception

Problem is what is the ultimate end goal after all this hyper optimizing ? 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 02:16:15 PM
"People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude."
Yes, that could happen, but I think the main reason people get mad when they hear the gospel is because it hurts their sin. People don't want to be called a sinner and don't like their sins to be exposed as Jesus did to pretty much everyone He met.

No...most people get mad because they are put down as people and the religious people use the sin as an excuse to put those people down.   It's the "splinter in your eye...log in mine" teaching.

Jesus did not expose most people's sin...he praised people for exhibition of faith but very seldomly commented on their sin.   To God, every human is a sinner and equally bad.  What Jesus did a lot of was slamming of pharisees who were constantly measuring people by their actions and alleged "holiness"  I would say that the "sin" that Jesus seemed to be most concerned about was spiritual pride...or at least self-proclaimed/self-indulgent spiritual pride. 

Jesus saw the person...not the sin.  Just like the father saw the prodigal son for the son he lost...not for the dirt


I must address this for it might mislead people. You might already know, but just to make it true to how it is written in the Bible.

Jesus praising of someone's faith was mentioned only 2 times in the Bible. One with a Centurion and another one with a Syrophoenician woman. Both were Gentiles not Jews. Jesus praised, literal Greek translation would be, He said, "MEGA is your faith." You can look it up yourself, but just wanted to address correctly.

Mostly other times, Jesus had to rebuke His disciples or someone's lack of faith. Just count how many times He said, "O you of little faith." It does not mean He hated or looked down on them. He had to rebuke so that they would wake up. Jesus even rebuked Peter saying "Get behind me, Satan," when Peter tried to stop Jesus when He said He would die on the cross. Again, it doesn't mean Jesus didn't love Peter. He was literally rebuking Satan and saving Peter from falling into Satan's desire. There are so many other times He exposed people's sins for them to repent. Some did repent, but some left sadly like that rich young man.

Praising someone's faith is good, but truer love is shown when rebuking those you really love for them to not fall into Satan's lies. Please don't take my writing and think Jesus only praised someone twice. I'm sure He did so more, but The Bible is clearly telling us there were more rebuking, but it was definitely out of LOVE.

Jesus had to address sins so that people could be saved. If you carefully read the full story of the prodigal son story example, the prodigal son regretted his sins and repented of his sins so he was accepted again when he returned, but the older son was not accepted because of his un-willing heart to repent of his sin when he was not happy of his brother coming back home. Why was he not happy? Because return of the brother means he would have to share his father's will again. Not only the father's accepting the sinful son returning home was the climax but also the older son being arrogant was the punch line Jesus was saying in the faces of hypocritical Jewish leaders who loved money and people's praise more than God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 02:37:47 PM
the problem with hyper focus on growth is not just about churches - it is every part of society now

Look at the non profit sector today . Attend any board meeting. The way they talk about “metrics” and “ROI” etc you will quickly be lulled into thinking this is a Fortune 500 corporation. 

This is the problem when society has run out of new big ideas and all that is left is “optimizing “  and chasing efficiency gains . Organized Religion is no exception

Problem is what is the ultimate end goal after all this hyper optimizing ?

You bring a good point.

Church being influenced by these strategies and implementing just for the growth is pretty gross actually. I'm not saying growing or big churches are bad. They could be great if they spread the gospel. But I'm questioning the motives of these kinds of tactics. I once heard some big name leader trying to encourage church to be top dogs in America in every career or working field so that they can influence more people. I mean, where in the Bible or Jesus ever say things like that? I so believed and supported this guy for awhile but realized how un-biblical it was and he was doing it to collect more money.

Are the churches doing these to make more disciples or make more money? See, here is another money vs. God issue. I think the only strategy the church needs is just focusing on His words, teaching Christ from the Bible and God will take care of the rest. I really hope Christians in this nation wake up and take the privilege to read and study the word of God. Well, it could only be done by the Holy Spirit. I can only pray.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 04:00:22 PM
Since you seem like you want to get real technical, I will write on.

Like I've replied to Irvinecommuter, I think teaching the word of God has to be the priority in church. Yes, there are many other things in the Lord's day like singing hymns/praise, reading the word together, fellowships, dinning, etc. (I NEVER said those are bad. Please don't misunderstand.) Those are all elements of the Sunday gatherings. But if you have to choose one thing because of whatever reason (world is ending tomorrow/no one will see each other again/etc.), what would it be? I think proclaiming the gospel, which is really teaching who Christ is would be the only thing left. So that people would come to a conclusion whether to have faith or not. This is an extreme example, but just so that what's most important is rendered.
I agree that teaching the word of God is a priority but again, it's not the only thing. If I were to chose what would be the one thing, it would be fellowship, that's what God meant for us, to love him and to love one another... we are a relational species and we use those relations to express God's will. And you can say that is actually from the word of God.

Quote
About the relation of giving money and worship, let me get real real deep here since it is required to explain. You've been warned. What is worship? It's recognizing God and responding to Him by sacrificing what's very WORTH to us. When God had Moses bring Israel out of Egypt, He gave them the instruction how to WORSHIP. Yes, all those many regulations and rules to sacrifice animals and so on. We all know those regulations could not be kept, but God did give them so because He wanted His people to be set apart different which really means "holy" from the rest of the nations. He wasn't going to punish them if they couldn't keep up. He wanted to see if their heart really desires to follow His words, not expecting the perfection of human will. Anyways, those giving "sacrifices" were what was originally called "worship." But since Jesus sacrificed Himself once for all, we don't have to do those ritual ceremonies anymore. The only thing we can do is having faith that Jesus completed the Law. Now the only sacrifice really left is the "will offering," which from the original laws was granted to Israel to do so when they had willing heart to give additionally. So we can still do so by giving money. It could be our time, food or clothes anything that's worth to us. But as you know, those all require money. So this is the originated context of worship. Now these days for some reason, Christians think worship is some kind of band playing music and singing songs about God up on stage. Please remember, I'm not saying that's not worship nor bad. Those are all beautiful for I was heavily involved in music ministry myself. But saying worship is music is not quite right. Worship is everything like you said, but more so daily walk with God, devoting ourselves to know Him more, be like Him more as we will be one day.

I understand where you are going here but there has to be a balance. By the same token, there are many people who give money, time and talent but are not very Christian. It goes both ways.

Even though you say you don't, I think you have bias against more modern services/churches. I don't think it's fair to say that people equate worship with music/band, it's a type of worship and if people prefer it, why is that any less "biblical"?

Quote
What I'm disappointed with churches in America or many developed countries today is that they seem to focus on people more than God. How to attract more people? How to have better programs so that more people will be pleased? I think having those are all fine, but if the main focus (Christ) is missing, is that really church? Church is a body of Christ, correct? If the body does not know what part of the body it is, isn't that considered a malfunctioned? Why do I assume that? Because I've seen that happen in many churches including mine. Thousands of people attending a big mega church and not knowing a thing about what Jesus did is pretty sad, isn't it? Maybe like Irvinecoummter said, they are baby Christians and will grow more spiritually. Why then are so many younger generations leaving church? They might have been in it because of the cool music and nice feeling sermons, but once the scripture touches the subject of their sin, what would be the reaction? Would they still come repent or would they get disappointed and leave? I think many already left so younger people are not really believing in God anymore these days. If they really want to know why people are leaving it's because of the lack of teaching about Christ at front and smart younger people are fed up with programs that are trying to catch up with the world's trend. Well, you might still say that's my assumption and maybe it is. But I believe if churches were to teach gospel only more younger people or even non-believers will come to find out more about Christ for that is what the real church is from outsider's perspective anyways. One thing to clarify just in case someone takes it to whole another discussion, I'm still at my church even though it's not perfect and pray that we are pleasing God more than people thus we can serve and love people correctly.

I think what you are talking about are different issues. Churches like Mars Hill is an example that I think you are referring to, but focusing on people isn't a bad thing. As IC and I mentioned, that's part 2 of God's commandment (Matthew and Mark).Neither of us can say what is the "best" way for a church to function. You may not think the new type of service works but what if it does for some? Getting people to come to hear the word of God takes effort, and if that effort is being the son of God, playing music in a band, having a nice facility, giving an entertaining service... why would you discount that? I'm sure some Pharisee thought loaves and fish was not the "biblical" way. I guess I look more at the end rather than the means. And yes, I admit that some churches screw up both ends and means... but we just have to keep trying.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 04:48:52 PM
Since you seem like you want to get real technical, I will write on.

Like I've replied to Irvinecommuter, I think teaching the word of God has to be the priority in church. Yes, there are many other things in the Lord's day like singing hymns/praise, reading the word together, fellowships, dinning, etc. (I NEVER said those are bad. Please don't misunderstand.) Those are all elements of the Sunday gatherings. But if you have to choose one thing because of whatever reason (world is ending tomorrow/no one will see each other again/etc.), what would it be? I think proclaiming the gospel, which is really teaching who Christ is would be the only thing left. So that people would come to a conclusion whether to have faith or not. This is an extreme example, but just so that what's most important is rendered.
I agree that teaching the word of God is a priority but again, it's not the only thing. If I were to chose what would be the one thing, it would be fellowship, that's what God meant for us, to love him and to love one another... we are a relational species and we use those relations to express God's will. And you can say that is actually from the word of God.

Quote
About the relation of giving money and worship, let me get real real deep here since it is required to explain. You've been warned. What is worship? It's recognizing God and responding to Him by sacrificing what's very WORTH to us. When God had Moses bring Israel out of Egypt, He gave them the instruction how to WORSHIP. Yes, all those many regulations and rules to sacrifice animals and so on. We all know those regulations could not be kept, but God did give them so because He wanted His people to be set apart different which really means "holy" from the rest of the nations. He wasn't going to punish them if they couldn't keep up. He wanted to see if their heart really desires to follow His words, not expecting the perfection of human will. Anyways, those giving "sacrifices" were what was originally called "worship." But since Jesus sacrificed Himself once for all, we don't have to do those ritual ceremonies anymore. The only thing we can do is having faith that Jesus completed the Law. Now the only sacrifice really left is the "will offering," which from the original laws was granted to Israel to do so when they had willing heart to give additionally. So we can still do so by giving money. It could be our time, food or clothes anything that's worth to us. But as you know, those all require money. So this is the originated context of worship. Now these days for some reason, Christians think worship is some kind of band playing music and singing songs about God up on stage. Please remember, I'm not saying that's not worship nor bad. Those are all beautiful for I was heavily involved in music ministry myself. But saying worship is music is not quite right. Worship is everything like you said, but more so daily walk with God, devoting ourselves to know Him more, be like Him more as we will be one day.

I understand where you are going here but there has to be a balance. By the same token, there are many people who give money, time and talent but are not very Christian. It goes both ways.

Even though you say you don't, I think you have bias against more modern services/churches. I don't think it's fair to say that people equate worship with music/band, it's a type of worship and if people prefer it, why is that any less "biblical"?

Quote
What I'm disappointed with churches in America or many developed countries today is that they seem to focus on people more than God. How to attract more people? How to have better programs so that more people will be pleased? I think having those are all fine, but if the main focus (Christ) is missing, is that really church? Church is a body of Christ, correct? If the body does not know what part of the body it is, isn't that considered a malfunctioned? Why do I assume that? Because I've seen that happen in many churches including mine. Thousands of people attending a big mega church and not knowing a thing about what Jesus did is pretty sad, isn't it? Maybe like Irvinecoummter said, they are baby Christians and will grow more spiritually. Why then are so many younger generations leaving church? They might have been in it because of the cool music and nice feeling sermons, but once the scripture touches the subject of their sin, what would be the reaction? Would they still come repent or would they get disappointed and leave? I think many already left so younger people are not really believing in God anymore these days. If they really want to know why people are leaving it's because of the lack of teaching about Christ at front and smart younger people are fed up with programs that are trying to catch up with the world's trend. Well, you might still say that's my assumption and maybe it is. But I believe if churches were to teach gospel only more younger people or even non-believers will come to find out more about Christ for that is what the real church is from outsider's perspective anyways. One thing to clarify just in case someone takes it to whole another discussion, I'm still at my church even though it's not perfect and pray that we are pleasing God more than people thus we can serve and love people correctly.

I think what you are talking about are different issues. Churches like Mars Hill is an example that I think you are referring to, but focusing on people isn't a bad thing. As IC and I mentioned, that's part 2 of God's commandment (Matthew and Mark).Neither of us can say what is the "best" way for a church to function. You may not think the new type of service works but what if it does for some? Getting people to come to hear the word of God takes effort, and if that effort is being the son of God, playing music in a band, having a nice facility, giving an entertaining service... why would you discount that? I'm sure some Pharisee thought loaves and fish was not the "biblical" way. I guess I look more at the end rather than the means. And yes, I admit that some churches screw up both ends and means... but we just have to keep trying.

Irvinecommuter and you focus on the greatest commandment, love God and love others verse and that's great. But as I've mentioned, if you really love God, you WILL love others as yourself automatically for the Holy Spirit will do so through you. You can't love others like yourself. Period. Even further, you can't love God by your will. How am I so sure? That's what Jesus has been teaching all along. You can't fulfill the Law by your will while Pharisees and religious leaders acted like they could and asked heavy burdens on people. Only Jesus can fulfill and He has done it FOR you. Now if you accept that faith, The Holy Spirit dwells in you that moment you have faith so He will guide you to love God and naturally love others. So if one thinks Pharisees loved God but not people, that's mistaken. They did not love God The Father in the first place and Jesus pointed that out that was the very reason why they were not accepting The Son, Jesus.

My point? Love God and He will make you love others. That's the best way for church to even exist. How do we love God? We can love God by knowing Him. For example, if you loved your kids, you would want to know more about them everyday, wouldn't you? Yes, you accept them as they are and have fellowships, but again there is eager to know more and more everyday about them, discover about them so that you could guide them into right directions until they are fully grown. Knowing God comes from hearing His words and His words are available for us to read free in this country. As you pointed out the greatest commandment, reading and studying your bible so that knowing/loving God more does fulfill that commandment in a sense. You will love others naturally once that's done in your life and that's why I keep emphasizing that's the responsibility of the church and church leaders.

Please don't take it in a way I'm saying no fellowship, no music, no modern church. I never said those. I only said it is sad when church takes those above studying the word of God. I would take total different approach if this thread was about non-believers, but since almost half of the poll vote said they were Christians, I must take more strict standard here.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 05:12:36 PM
I don't necessarily believe that just by loving God one will also love others.

That is why Jesus had to spell that out.

There are many points in history where man used the love for God as a reason to do horrible things to their fellow man. You can say they really didn't love God but that's not how they felt.

By the way, it's not lost on me that this conversation is a perfect example of why people don't understand Christianity.

I guess I feel that it is relative, each person has their own idea of church, that's why so many different ones exist and that's just within the scope of Christianity.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:16:08 PM
"People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude."
Yes, that could happen, but I think the main reason people get mad when they hear the gospel is because it hurts their sin. People don't want to be called a sinner and don't like their sins to be exposed as Jesus did to pretty much everyone He met.

No...most people get mad because they are put down as people and the religious people use the sin as an excuse to put those people down.   It's the "splinter in your eye...log in mine" teaching.

Jesus did not expose most people's sin...he praised people for exhibition of faith but very seldomly commented on their sin.   To God, every human is a sinner and equally bad.  What Jesus did a lot of was slamming of pharisees who were constantly measuring people by their actions and alleged "holiness"  I would say that the "sin" that Jesus seemed to be most concerned about was spiritual pride...or at least self-proclaimed/self-indulgent spiritual pride. 

Jesus saw the person...not the sin.  Just like the father saw the prodigal son for the son he lost...not for the dirt


I must address this for it might mislead people. You might already know, but just to make it true to how it is written in the Bible.

Jesus praising of someone's faith was mentioned only 2 times in the Bible. One with a Centurion and another one with a Syrophoenician woman. Both were Gentiles not Jews. Jesus praised, literal Greek translation would be, He said, "MEGA is your faith." You can look it up yourself, but just wanted to address correctly.

Mostly other times, Jesus had to rebuke His disciples or someone's lack of faith. Just count how many times He said, "O you of little faith." It does not mean He hated or looked down on them. He had to rebuke so that they would wake up. Jesus even rebuked Peter saying "Get behind me, Satan," when Peter tried to stop Jesus when He said He would die on the cross. Again, it doesn't mean Jesus didn't love Peter. He was literally rebuking Satan and saving Peter from falling into Satan's desire. There are so many other times He exposed people's sins for them to repent. Some did repent, but some left sadly like that rich young man.

Praising someone's faith is good, but truer love is shown when rebuking those you really love for them to not fall into Satan's lies. Please don't take my writing and think Jesus only praised someone twice. I'm sure He did so more, but The Bible is clearly telling us there were more rebuking, but it was definitely out of LOVE.

Jesus had to address sins so that people could be saved. If you carefully read the full story of the prodigal son story example, the prodigal son regretted his sins and repented of his sins so he was accepted again when he returned, but the older son was not accepted because of his un-willing heart to repent of his sin when he was not happy of his brother coming back home. Why was he not happy? Because return of the brother means he would have to share his father's will again. Not only the father's accepting the sinful son returning home was the climax but also the older son being arrogant was the punch line Jesus was saying in the faces of hypocritical Jewish leaders who loved money and people's praise more than God.

Again...you make general broad statements without specific reference, which makes it really really hard to discuss the matter.

With respect to faith, there are plenty of quotes regarding it and its critical and central role in salvation.  The mustard seed parable, the discussion re not worrying,

I do not believe there were any discussions previously about "praising" someone's faith.   I was making a point that faith is the critical element...everything else is secondary.   To get bogged down on those things detract from the main message...which is faith and love.  Going back to my previous points, Jesus stated that there are two commandments, Love your God and Love your neighbor.  Those things are not separate and apart.  To love God is to love his creation. 

I would disagree that he often "exposed" people's sins...most of the time, he talked in generality.   He would often correct his disciples not because of "sin" but rather than they lack faith...Peter looking down at the water, disciples not being able to cast out demons, disciples coming to him at telling him that things are impossible, etc.  With respect to incident re Peter you mentioned, it was a way to remind Peter to have faith that there is a greater plan.  Peter always wanted to take charge and do things on his own as a way to prove to Jesus that he was loyal to Jesus.  As the remainder of Mark 8:33 states:

But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you bare not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”

Of course, it is fair game for Christians to course correct and we should keep our brothers/sisters on the proper path but again, that should be done in love and without a sense of authority or righteousness.  We are all sinners and thus should always look to God for guidance and growth.  The fact that we are all sinners and need God for salvation is the key to being a Christian, not whether one translation is more accurate than another or what the original Greek/Hebrew meaning is or isn't. 

You seem to preach this concept of self-improvement is the path to enlightenment when it is my opinion that Jesus preached the opposite.  Jesus demonstrated love and faith...not read up about it.   Reading the Bible and understanding the word of God are ways to keep ourselves in line/in tune with God but it should not be a stick to bash others.  Jesus quoted scripture to counter Satan and those who attacked him but he did not use them to bash people or tell them that they are wrong.

Going back to the prodigal son discussion, yes the younger son realized his faults but the father did not know that...he just welcomed him back...dirt and all.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:22:27 PM

Irvinecommuter and you focus on the greatest commandment, love God and love others verse and that's great. But as I've mentioned, if you really love God, you WILL love others as yourself automatically for the Holy Spirit will do so through you. You can't love others like yourself. Period. Even further, you can't love God by your will. How am I so sure? That's what Jesus has been teaching all along. You can't fulfill the Law by your will while Pharisees and religious leaders acted like they could and asked heavy burdens on people. Only Jesus can fulfill and He has done it FOR you. Now if you accept that faith, The Holy Spirit dwells in you that moment you have faith so He will guide you to love God and naturally love others. So if one thinks Pharisees loved God but not people, that's mistaken. They did not love God The Father in the first place and Jesus pointed that out that was the very reason why they were not accepting The Son, Jesus.

My point? Love God and He will make you love others. That's the best way for church to even exist. How do we love God? We can love God by knowing Him. For example, if you loved your kids, you would want to know more about them everyday, wouldn't you? Yes, you accept them as they are and have fellowships, but again there is eager to know more and more everyday about them, discover about them so that you could guide them into right directions until they are fully grown. Knowing God comes from hearing His words and His words are available for us to read free in this country. As you pointed out the greatest commandment, reading and studying your bible so that knowing/loving God more does fulfill that commandment in a sense. You will love others naturally once that's done in your life and that's why I keep emphasizing that's the responsibility of the church and church leaders.

Please don't take it in a way I'm saying no fellowship, no music, no modern church. I never said those. I only said it is sad when church takes those above studying the word of God. I would take total different approach if this thread was about non-believers, but since almost half of the poll vote said they were Christians, I must take more strict standard here.

It flows both ways...God is love so love in any form in a reflection of God and a sign of faith.  Yes the Church is supposed to help a Christian mature and grow but it is also supposed to help bring in unbelievers.   Jesus said himself that he came for the unbelievers...not those who are saved.   He was training his disciples to spread the Gospel after he leaves but those disciples were not rabbis or biblical academics.  He taught them to have faith and demonstrate God's love and salvation. 

I don't know what you mean by "church takes those above studying the word of God."  Again, I think IHO and I are both saying that you can do all those things together...not one element is more important than the other.

After a day plus worth of discussion, I am still not understanding your points.   
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:24:01 PM
I don't necessarily believe that just by loving God one will also love others.

That is why Jesus had to spell that out.

There are many points in history where man used the love for God as a reason to do horrible things to their fellow man. You can say they really didn't love God but that's not how they felt.

By the way, it's not lost on me that this conversation is a perfect example of why people don't understand Christianity.

I guess I feel that it is relative, each person has their own idea of church, that's why so many different ones exist and that's just within the scope of Christianity.

Thanks for your honest opinion.

Yes, I think those who has done horrible things in the name of God in history were not really Christians. I do think they were using God's name to accomplish what their own heart desires. Crusades is one example.

BUT those people later on could have repented and returned to God (which I doubt, but there is always possibility so let's leave it at that).

So we disagree on loving God will do loving others. Let's pray and ask God what His will is then.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:31:30 PM
"People are annoyed about the preachy and holier-than-thou attitude."
Yes, that could happen, but I think the main reason people get mad when they hear the gospel is because it hurts their sin. People don't want to be called a sinner and don't like their sins to be exposed as Jesus did to pretty much everyone He met.

No...most people get mad because they are put down as people and the religious people use the sin as an excuse to put those people down.   It's the "splinter in your eye...log in mine" teaching.

Jesus did not expose most people's sin...he praised people for exhibition of faith but very seldomly commented on their sin.   To God, every human is a sinner and equally bad.  What Jesus did a lot of was slamming of pharisees who were constantly measuring people by their actions and alleged "holiness"  I would say that the "sin" that Jesus seemed to be most concerned about was spiritual pride...or at least self-proclaimed/self-indulgent spiritual pride. 

Jesus saw the person...not the sin.  Just like the father saw the prodigal son for the son he lost...not for the dirt


I must address this for it might mislead people. You might already know, but just to make it true to how it is written in the Bible.

Jesus praising of someone's faith was mentioned only 2 times in the Bible. One with a Centurion and another one with a Syrophoenician woman. Both were Gentiles not Jews. Jesus praised, literal Greek translation would be, He said, "MEGA is your faith." You can look it up yourself, but just wanted to address correctly.

Mostly other times, Jesus had to rebuke His disciples or someone's lack of faith. Just count how many times He said, "O you of little faith." It does not mean He hated or looked down on them. He had to rebuke so that they would wake up. Jesus even rebuked Peter saying "Get behind me, Satan," when Peter tried to stop Jesus when He said He would die on the cross. Again, it doesn't mean Jesus didn't love Peter. He was literally rebuking Satan and saving Peter from falling into Satan's desire. There are so many other times He exposed people's sins for them to repent. Some did repent, but some left sadly like that rich young man.

Praising someone's faith is good, but truer love is shown when rebuking those you really love for them to not fall into Satan's lies. Please don't take my writing and think Jesus only praised someone twice. I'm sure He did so more, but The Bible is clearly telling us there were more rebuking, but it was definitely out of LOVE.

Jesus had to address sins so that people could be saved. If you carefully read the full story of the prodigal son story example, the prodigal son regretted his sins and repented of his sins so he was accepted again when he returned, but the older son was not accepted because of his un-willing heart to repent of his sin when he was not happy of his brother coming back home. Why was he not happy? Because return of the brother means he would have to share his father's will again. Not only the father's accepting the sinful son returning home was the climax but also the older son being arrogant was the punch line Jesus was saying in the faces of hypocritical Jewish leaders who loved money and people's praise more than God.

Again...you make general broad statements without specific reference, which makes it really really hard to discuss the matter.

With respect to faith, there are plenty of quotes regarding it and its critical and central role in salvation.  The mustard seed parable, the discussion re not worrying,

I do not believe there were any discussions previously about "praising" someone's faith.   I was making a point that faith is the critical element...everything else is secondary.   To get bogged down on those things detract from the main message...which is faith and love.  Going back to my previous points, Jesus stated that there are two commandments, Love your God and Love your neighbor.  Those things are not separate and apart.  To love God is to love his creation. 

I would disagree that he often "exposed" people's sins...most of the time, he talked in generality.   He would often correct his disciples not because of "sin" but rather than they lack faith...Peter looking down at the water, disciples not being able to cast out demons, disciples coming to him at telling him that things are impossible, etc.  With respect to incident re Peter you mentioned, it was a way to remind Peter to have faith that there is a greater plan.  Peter always wanted to take charge and do things on his own as a way to prove to Jesus that he was loyal to Jesus.  As the remainder of Mark 8:33 states:

But turning and seeing his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you bare not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”

Of course, it is fair game for Christians to course correct and we should keep our brothers/sisters on the proper path but again, that should be done in love and without a sense of authority or righteousness.  We are all sinners and thus should always look to God for guidance and growth.  The fact that we are all sinners and need God for salvation is the key to being a Christian, not whether one translation is more accurate than another or what the original Greek/Hebrew meaning is or isn't. 

You seem to preach this concept of self-improvement is the path to enlightenment when it is my opinion that Jesus preached the opposite.  Jesus demonstrated love and faith...not read up about it.   Reading the Bible and understanding the word of God are ways to keep ourselves in line/in tune with God but it should not be a stick to bash others.  Jesus quoted scripture to counter Satan and those who attacked him but he did not use them to bash people or tell them that they are wrong.

Going back to the prodigal son discussion, yes the younger son realized his faults but the father did not know that...he just welcomed him back...dirt and all.

Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:31:51 PM
I don't necessarily believe that just by loving God one will also love others.

That is why Jesus had to spell that out.

There are many points in history where man used the love for God as a reason to do horrible things to their fellow man. You can say they really didn't love God but that's not how they felt.

By the way, it's not lost on me that this conversation is a perfect example of why people don't understand Christianity.

I guess I feel that it is relative, each person has their own idea of church, that's why so many different ones exist and that's just within the scope of Christianity.

Thanks for your honest opinion.

Yes, I think those who has done horrible things in the name of God in history were not really Christians. I do think they were using God's name to accomplish what their own heart desires. Crusades is one example.

BUT those people later on could have repented and returned to God (which I doubt, but there is always possibility so let's leave it at that).

So we disagree on loving God will do loving others. Let's pray and ask God what His will is then.

That's not true...there are plenty of people in the Crusades who truly believe that they were doing the will of God by driving out Muslims in the promise land.  It's not that different than what a lot of end of days Christians now believe about the ME.  That it is a Christian's duty to protect Israel and Christians in the ME.  It's also not that different than the Evangelical Christians being singly focused on abortion.

I don't think that IHO means that loving God could not result in loving others but rather that there are plenty of example in history where people believe that they are loving God while ignoring the need to love others.  For example, Benedictine Monks lock themselves away for the sole purpose for focusing on studying the word of God and refine their relationship with God.   The focus should be two fold...loving God will help make your a "better person" because your old self is being replaced by God/Holy Spirit but that it is impossible to say that such an event is happening if you just stay in the church.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:35:11 PM

Irvinecommuter and you focus on the greatest commandment, love God and love others verse and that's great. But as I've mentioned, if you really love God, you WILL love others as yourself automatically for the Holy Spirit will do so through you. You can't love others like yourself. Period. Even further, you can't love God by your will. How am I so sure? That's what Jesus has been teaching all along. You can't fulfill the Law by your will while Pharisees and religious leaders acted like they could and asked heavy burdens on people. Only Jesus can fulfill and He has done it FOR you. Now if you accept that faith, The Holy Spirit dwells in you that moment you have faith so He will guide you to love God and naturally love others. So if one thinks Pharisees loved God but not people, that's mistaken. They did not love God The Father in the first place and Jesus pointed that out that was the very reason why they were not accepting The Son, Jesus.

My point? Love God and He will make you love others. That's the best way for church to even exist. How do we love God? We can love God by knowing Him. For example, if you loved your kids, you would want to know more about them everyday, wouldn't you? Yes, you accept them as they are and have fellowships, but again there is eager to know more and more everyday about them, discover about them so that you could guide them into right directions until they are fully grown. Knowing God comes from hearing His words and His words are available for us to read free in this country. As you pointed out the greatest commandment, reading and studying your bible so that knowing/loving God more does fulfill that commandment in a sense. You will love others naturally once that's done in your life and that's why I keep emphasizing that's the responsibility of the church and church leaders.

Please don't take it in a way I'm saying no fellowship, no music, no modern church. I never said those. I only said it is sad when church takes those above studying the word of God. I would take total different approach if this thread was about non-believers, but since almost half of the poll vote said they were Christians, I must take more strict standard here.

It flows both ways...God is love so love in any form in a reflection of God and a sign of faith.  Yes the Church is supposed to help a Christian mature and grow but it is also supposed to help bring in unbelievers.   Jesus said himself that he came for the unbelievers...not those who are saved.   He was training his disciples to spread the Gospel after he leaves but those disciples were not rabbis or biblical academics.  He taught them to have faith and demonstrate God's love and salvation. 

I don't know what you mean by "church takes those above studying the word of God."  Again, I think IHO and I are both saying that you can do all those things together...not one element is more important than the other.

After a day plus worth of discussion, I am still not understanding your points.

What is your point? What are you trying to prove?
I think I made my points pretty clear, but it could be that you're not fully getting because I'm just answering IHO's questions and replying to your arguments.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:35:28 PM

Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:39:35 PM

Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.

Haha. I think you are the one who's being broad here.

As for Jesus rebuking, I only replied to your comment since you said Jesus never used scriptures to tell someone wrong. But now you are saying He did so, I'm kinda confused where your position is.

You still have not answered my another question. Do you think I love you?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:41:59 PM

Irvinecommuter and you focus on the greatest commandment, love God and love others verse and that's great. But as I've mentioned, if you really love God, you WILL love others as yourself automatically for the Holy Spirit will do so through you. You can't love others like yourself. Period. Even further, you can't love God by your will. How am I so sure? That's what Jesus has been teaching all along. You can't fulfill the Law by your will while Pharisees and religious leaders acted like they could and asked heavy burdens on people. Only Jesus can fulfill and He has done it FOR you. Now if you accept that faith, The Holy Spirit dwells in you that moment you have faith so He will guide you to love God and naturally love others. So if one thinks Pharisees loved God but not people, that's mistaken. They did not love God The Father in the first place and Jesus pointed that out that was the very reason why they were not accepting The Son, Jesus.

My point? Love God and He will make you love others. That's the best way for church to even exist. How do we love God? We can love God by knowing Him. For example, if you loved your kids, you would want to know more about them everyday, wouldn't you? Yes, you accept them as they are and have fellowships, but again there is eager to know more and more everyday about them, discover about them so that you could guide them into right directions until they are fully grown. Knowing God comes from hearing His words and His words are available for us to read free in this country. As you pointed out the greatest commandment, reading and studying your bible so that knowing/loving God more does fulfill that commandment in a sense. You will love others naturally once that's done in your life and that's why I keep emphasizing that's the responsibility of the church and church leaders.

Please don't take it in a way I'm saying no fellowship, no music, no modern church. I never said those. I only said it is sad when church takes those above studying the word of God. I would take total different approach if this thread was about non-believers, but since almost half of the poll vote said they were Christians, I must take more strict standard here.

It flows both ways...God is love so love in any form in a reflection of God and a sign of faith.  Yes the Church is supposed to help a Christian mature and grow but it is also supposed to help bring in unbelievers.   Jesus said himself that he came for the unbelievers...not those who are saved.   He was training his disciples to spread the Gospel after he leaves but those disciples were not rabbis or biblical academics.  He taught them to have faith and demonstrate God's love and salvation. 

I don't know what you mean by "church takes those above studying the word of God."  Again, I think IHO and I are both saying that you can do all those things together...not one element is more important than the other.

After a day plus worth of discussion, I am still not understanding your points.

What is your point? What are you trying to prove?
I think I made my points pretty clear, but it could be that you're not fully getting because I'm just answering IHO's questions and replying to your arguments.

No...I don't think you made your points very clearly.  You would make points and then say that it's not what you mean or that you did not intend to convey certain message/points.  For example, you specifically told me that I should repent because my understanding of the Bible is different from you...and then you said that you did not really mean it. 

Alternatively, you would state certain criticisms of certain churches but then never provide any specifics.

That is why I am asking you what your arguments and/or criticisms are. 

I already stated above that church is where God/Holy Spirit dwells...it is not a specific building or a specific location....it can be a Christian music concert with 30,000 worshipers or a private moment between 2 or 3 believers.  It could a meeting in which a non-believer is talking to Christians about what it means to be a Christian.  The location and agenda are not important...the key is whether God and the Holy Spirit are present. 

Yes, I think it is important to learn the Bible and discuss it but I do not think that such items are more important than worship or extending a hand to those in need or going on missions trips to help the less fortunate or going to a friend's house to comfort him or her in their time or need.  Those are all things that a Christian should do because that's what Jesus did.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:42:24 PM
I don't necessarily believe that just by loving God one will also love others.

That is why Jesus had to spell that out.

There are many points in history where man used the love for God as a reason to do horrible things to their fellow man. You can say they really didn't love God but that's not how they felt.

By the way, it's not lost on me that this conversation is a perfect example of why people don't understand Christianity.

I guess I feel that it is relative, each person has their own idea of church, that's why so many different ones exist and that's just within the scope of Christianity.

Thanks for your honest opinion.

Yes, I think those who has done horrible things in the name of God in history were not really Christians. I do think they were using God's name to accomplish what their own heart desires. Crusades is one example.

BUT those people later on could have repented and returned to God (which I doubt, but there is always possibility so let's leave it at that).

So we disagree on loving God will do loving others. Let's pray and ask God what His will is then.

That's not true...there are plenty of people in the Crusades who truly believe that they were doing the will of God by driving out Muslims in the promise land.  It's not that different than what a lot of end of days Christians now believe about the ME.  That it is a Christian's duty to protect Israel and Christians in the ME.  It's also not that different than the Evangelical Christians being singly focused on abortion.

I don't think that IHO means that loving God could not result in loving others but rather that there are plenty of example in history where people believe that they are loving God while ignoring the need to love others.  For example, Benedictine Monks lock themselves away for the sole purpose for focusing on studying the word of God and refine their relationship with God.   The focus should be two fold...loving God will help make your a "better person" because your old self is being replaced by God/Holy Spirit but that it is impossible to say that such an event is happening if you just stay in the church.

Well those are your takes, then they are. I'm not going to argue these cases.

I'm fine as long as you are not interpreting the scripture wrong and post here. I must get it straight then.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on April 03, 2019, 05:43:54 PM
Hi Mety,
I haven't been here for a while, but wanted to say that I am really encouraged by the content you are putting out there about your faith as a believer. Just wanted to say thanks.

Panda


Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.

Haha. I think you are the one who's being broad here.

As for Jesus rebuking, I only replied to your comment since you said Jesus never used scriptures to tell someone wrong. But now you are saying He did so, I'm kinda confused where your position is.

You still have not answered my another question. Do you think I love you?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:45:44 PM

Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.

Haha. I think you are the one who's being broad here.

As for Jesus rebuking, I only replied to your comment since you said Jesus never used scriptures to tell someone wrong. But now you are saying He did so, I'm kinda confused where your position is.

You still have not answered my another question. Do you think I love you?

Yeah...if you go back and look at my statement...I used words like seldomly or not very often. 

I think that you believe that you are acting in love and I have no doubt that you believe that you are acting in love but you have not quite set forth that message.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:47:36 PM

Irvinecommuter and you focus on the greatest commandment, love God and love others verse and that's great. But as I've mentioned, if you really love God, you WILL love others as yourself automatically for the Holy Spirit will do so through you. You can't love others like yourself. Period. Even further, you can't love God by your will. How am I so sure? That's what Jesus has been teaching all along. You can't fulfill the Law by your will while Pharisees and religious leaders acted like they could and asked heavy burdens on people. Only Jesus can fulfill and He has done it FOR you. Now if you accept that faith, The Holy Spirit dwells in you that moment you have faith so He will guide you to love God and naturally love others. So if one thinks Pharisees loved God but not people, that's mistaken. They did not love God The Father in the first place and Jesus pointed that out that was the very reason why they were not accepting The Son, Jesus.

My point? Love God and He will make you love others. That's the best way for church to even exist. How do we love God? We can love God by knowing Him. For example, if you loved your kids, you would want to know more about them everyday, wouldn't you? Yes, you accept them as they are and have fellowships, but again there is eager to know more and more everyday about them, discover about them so that you could guide them into right directions until they are fully grown. Knowing God comes from hearing His words and His words are available for us to read free in this country. As you pointed out the greatest commandment, reading and studying your bible so that knowing/loving God more does fulfill that commandment in a sense. You will love others naturally once that's done in your life and that's why I keep emphasizing that's the responsibility of the church and church leaders.

Please don't take it in a way I'm saying no fellowship, no music, no modern church. I never said those. I only said it is sad when church takes those above studying the word of God. I would take total different approach if this thread was about non-believers, but since almost half of the poll vote said they were Christians, I must take more strict standard here.

It flows both ways...God is love so love in any form in a reflection of God and a sign of faith.  Yes the Church is supposed to help a Christian mature and grow but it is also supposed to help bring in unbelievers.   Jesus said himself that he came for the unbelievers...not those who are saved.   He was training his disciples to spread the Gospel after he leaves but those disciples were not rabbis or biblical academics.  He taught them to have faith and demonstrate God's love and salvation. 

I don't know what you mean by "church takes those above studying the word of God."  Again, I think IHO and I are both saying that you can do all those things together...not one element is more important than the other.

After a day plus worth of discussion, I am still not understanding your points.

What is your point? What are you trying to prove?
I think I made my points pretty clear, but it could be that you're not fully getting because I'm just answering IHO's questions and replying to your arguments.

No...I don't think you made your points very clearly.  You would make points and then say that it's not what you mean or that you did not intend to convey certain message/points.  For example, you specifically told me that I should repent because my understanding of the Bible is different from you...and then you said that you did not really mean it. 

Alternatively, you would state certain criticisms of certain churches but then never provide any specifics.

That is why I am asking you what your arguments and/or criticisms are. 

I already stated above that church is where God/Holy Spirit dwells...it is not a specific building or a specific location....it can be a Christian music concert with 30,000 worshipers or a private moment between 2 or 3 believers.  It could a meeting in which a non-believer is talking to Christians about what it means to be a Christian.  The location and agenda are not important...the key is whether God and the Holy Spirit are present. 

Yes, I think it is important to learn the Bible and discuss it but I do not think that such items are more important than worship or extending a hand to those in need or going on missions trips to help the less fortunate or going to a friend's house to comfort him or her in their time or need.  Those are all things that a Christian should do because that's what Jesus did.

I still think you should repent if you don't literally believe everything in The Bible as inerrant word of God. I never took that back in case you didn't know (sorry).

I'm not interested in naming people and churches to criticize. I believe that's pretty ugly especially in a public forum.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:50:04 PM

I still think you should repent if you don't literally believe everything in The Bible as inerrant word of God. I never took that back in case you didn't know (sorry).

I'm not interested in naming people and churches to criticize. I believe that's pretty ugly especially in a public forum.

Did I say I did not believe that the Bible is the word of God?  If I did not believe it so, why would be citing Scripture to you in support of my points? The dispute was as to the interpretation of the text of the Bible, which you basically stated that your interpretation is the accurate one and that I should repent for believing something else.

You don't have to name specific churches or people..you can list practices that you believe are improper. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:52:47 PM

Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.

Haha. I think you are the one who's being broad here.

As for Jesus rebuking, I only replied to your comment since you said Jesus never used scriptures to tell someone wrong. But now you are saying He did so, I'm kinda confused where your position is.

You still have not answered my another question. Do you think I love you?

Yeah...if you go back and look at my statement...I used words like seldomly or not very often. 

I think that you believe that you are acting in love and I have no doubt that you believe that you are acting in love but you have not quite set forth that message.

Well, if you don't feel like I'm not showing enough love but only being preachy, then that's unfortunate you took it like that. I hope you know I'm loving you with patience and not being irritable. I may not love you as much as Christ did yet, but hopefully we will one day.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 05:56:16 PM
Hi Mety,
I haven't been here for a while, but wanted to say that I am really encouraged by the content you are putting out there about your faith as a believer. Just wanted to say thanks.

Panda


Jesus did rebuke people with the Old Testament scriptures when needed.

For the prodigal son again, the main concept is he "returned." It's not just the father accepting without knowing what's going on. Yes, he did run to embrace his son which was very rare and even un-dignifying at that time of era, but that's not the point.

Let me ask you these. Silly questions, but has reasons.
Do I sound like I love you as a brother in Christ? And Do you love me also?

I love all humans regardless of whether they are or are not Christians for they are the cherished creation of God.

Jesus rebuked his disciples due to their lack of faith...he rebuked the Pharisees for their misuses/abuses of their positions and for ignoring the true intentions of God.   He would reference Old Testament verses but generally to counter legalistic arguments or to affirm that he was fulfilling prophecies.

Haha. I think you are the one who's being broad here.

As for Jesus rebuking, I only replied to your comment since you said Jesus never used scriptures to tell someone wrong. But now you are saying He did so, I'm kinda confused where your position is.

You still have not answered my another question. Do you think I love you?

Thanks Panda.
Glad to hear there was encouragement.
I'm a learner as well, but I hope to strengthen brothers in Christ with His words more and more.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 05:56:55 PM

Well, if you don't feel like I'm not showing enough love but only being preachy, then that's unfortunate you took it like that. I hope you know I'm loving you with patience and not being irritable. I may not love you as much as Christ did yet, but hopefully we will one day.

Yes...clearly my fault that I took it the wrong way.   


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 03, 2019, 06:06:11 PM

I still think you should repent if you don't literally believe everything in The Bible as inerrant word of God. I never took that back in case you didn't know (sorry).

I'm not interested in naming people and churches to criticize. I believe that's pretty ugly especially in a public forum.

Did I say I did not believe that the Bible is the word of God?  If I did not believe it so, why would be citing Scripture to you in support of my points? The dispute was as to the interpretation of the text of the Bible, which you basically stated that your interpretation is the accurate one and that I should repent for believing something else.

You don't have to name specific churches or people..you can list practices that you believe are improper.

Believe the Bible as the "inerrant" word of God? No mistake, no wrong, not confusing, every single letter is the perfect word of God?

That's my question. If you believe so, then praise God. If not sure, then let's pray about it.

See? I never said I don't like certain practices. I only addressed the original context of worship from the scripture per IHO's questions (DID NOT say music should be banned), and I also said we should learn and study the word of God more if not set it as priority. Like you said, I think any elements/styles could be in the Lord's day gathering. I just have the priority. If a church has 30min concert, 40min positive message, then 20min praying that's fine as long as the message has teaching Christ. BUT if it's only to please people without any message of Christ, that's not church in my opinion. I'm not talking about using the name Jesus more and more. The context should be preaching the gospel like you said, which really is teaching Christ.

Still unclear?

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 03, 2019, 06:18:11 PM

Believe the Bible as the "inerrant" word of God? No mistake, no wrong, not confusing, every single letter is the perfect word of God?

Absolutely...except Jewish and Christian scholars have greatly differed on the interpretation of those words/text.  You apparently take a literal reading of Genesis while I do not.  I would never proclaim to state that I have a more "accurate" reading of the Bible than you but you do not seem to share in that opinion.

Quote
See? I never said I don't like certain practices. I only addressed the original context of worship from the scripture per IHO's questions (DID NOT say music should be banned), and I also said we should learn and study the word of God more if not set it as priority. Like you said, I think any elements/styles could be in the Lord's day gathering. I just have the priority. If a church has 30min concert, 40min positive message, then 20min praying that's fine as long as the message has teaching Christ. BUT if it's only to please people without any message of Christ, that's not church in my opinion. I'm not talking about using the name Jesus more and more. The context should be preaching the gospel like you said, which really is teaching Christ.

Still unclear?

Yes because even with something like the Prosperity Gospel...they still teach and sing about God and Jesus.  The issues it that they overly focus on one aspect of God/Jesus...which is the happiness/joy portions.  That does not make their teachings "wrong"...just incomplete.  There is nothing stopping a person in that church to read the Bible and learn about the other parts of being a Christian.   I mean people who are/were in Joel Osteen's church are not any less saved than me or any other Christians who were saved.

The church is not just one locale or one building...if you go into a church because the initial message appeal to you...you may go to another a few years later because you do not feel that the messages are substantive enough for you.  Great...it means that you have grown and mature as a Christian.  It doesn't mean that the first church was "wrong" or "misleading" followers.

People switch churches all the time both for style and substance...it's not that different than someone who goes from kindergarten to elementary school to junior high etc.   You should not expect a preschooler to understand or stay interested in a college level course, just like you would not expect a college student to go and learn at a preschool.

Now...if the school is teaching nonsense and falsehoods then absolutely...it's a problem but to say I don't think that it is correct to say that a church is "bad" because it focus on biblical based message that make its members feel happy or joyful.

Personally...there are times when I just feel like listening to and signing Christian worship song...while other times I listens to Cavalry Chapel sermons in which they break down verses one word at a time.   My time singing songs is not "better" or "worse" than when I listen to a bible study.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 03, 2019, 07:14:03 PM
Funny how I agree with IC on many things but we don't agree on lot size. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 04, 2019, 01:59:56 PM

Believe the Bible as the "inerrant" word of God? No mistake, no wrong, not confusing, every single letter is the perfect word of God?

Absolutely...except Jewish and Christian scholars have greatly differed on the interpretation of those words/text.  You apparently take a literal reading of Genesis while I do not.  I would never proclaim to state that I have a more "accurate" reading of the Bible than you but you do not seem to share in that opinion.

Quote
See? I never said I don't like certain practices. I only addressed the original context of worship from the scripture per IHO's questions (DID NOT say music should be banned), and I also said we should learn and study the word of God more if not set it as priority. Like you said, I think any elements/styles could be in the Lord's day gathering. I just have the priority. If a church has 30min concert, 40min positive message, then 20min praying that's fine as long as the message has teaching Christ. BUT if it's only to please people without any message of Christ, that's not church in my opinion. I'm not talking about using the name Jesus more and more. The context should be preaching the gospel like you said, which really is teaching Christ.

Still unclear?

Yes because even with something like the Prosperity Gospel...they still teach and sing about God and Jesus.  The issues it that they overly focus on one aspect of God/Jesus...which is the happiness/joy portions.  That does not make their teachings "wrong"...just incomplete.  There is nothing stopping a person in that church to read the Bible and learn about the other parts of being a Christian.   I mean people who are/were in Joel Osteen's church are not any less saved than me or any other Christians who were saved.

The church is not just one locale or one building...if you go into a church because the initial message appeal to you...you may go to another a few years later because you do not feel that the messages are substantive enough for you.  Great...it means that you have grown and mature as a Christian.  It doesn't mean that the first church was "wrong" or "misleading" followers.

People switch churches all the time both for style and substance...it's not that different than someone who goes from kindergarten to elementary school to junior high etc.   You should not expect a preschooler to understand or stay interested in a college level course, just like you would not expect a college student to go and learn at a preschool.

Now...if the school is teaching nonsense and falsehoods then absolutely...it's a problem but to say I don't think that it is correct to say that a church is "bad" because it focus on biblical based message that make its members feel happy or joyful.

Personally...there are times when I just feel like listening to and signing Christian worship song...while other times I listens to Cavalry Chapel sermons in which they break down verses one word at a time.   My time singing songs is not "better" or "worse" than when I listen to a bible study.

You seem to keep adding caveats. When it comes to believing God's words, the scholars' and others' interpretations don't really matter. It is what YOU believe and you did make it clear you don't think God created the earth in literal 6 days. I'm not arguing numerology as you've accused before. Genesis is the first book of The Bible and if you don't really take His words in literal interpretation there, then where do you draw the line what to take literal or not? I don't think it's fair to take something literal and some other things symbolic. That view is actually pretty popular today because it nicely blends the modern science into their Christian belief. But I see that as a cop out, playing safe, and if further don't really have faith in God. Those are the ones who turn Jesus being born from a virgin as symbolic and not literal. And all this really comes down into this: To gain people's approval more than God's. This is what I keep repeating over and over for the last two days here as the main problem of Christianity today though it's nothing new because as I've said before this kind of fake faith has been around since the Old Testament times. Money is a part of it, taking only music as worship is a part of it, not focusing on studying the word of God is a part of it.

You keep saying I'm acting like I'm more holy or mature than you or baby Christians, but isn't that what you are assuming? Seems like you are the one taking a view of studying the word of God as more mature act. Switching/hoping around churches is not actually that great. If you are mature then you should serve people in your church, not look for somewhere "more mature." (The word more mature doesn't make sense, but I'm using it to bring the point.)

I apologize agin to any non-believers or even to you if any of my words hurt your feelings. But I still haven't changed my views on this matter of belief of Christianity. It must have been either my poor writing skills or your own interpretation of my words if you still think I kept changing my mind (which you accused me of), but what I'm saying is still the same. To bring my belief even further, I believe in science for many things, but I don't believe in the science that goes against The Bible at all. I take God's words over science. Period.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 04, 2019, 02:04:39 PM
Funny how I agree with IC on many things but we don't agree on lot size. :)

Funny how you and I almost never agree on anything. lol
It's all good though. It's great to share our thoughts and beliefs in God here.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 04, 2019, 02:13:35 PM
Funny how I agree with IC on many things but we don't agree on lot size. :)

Funny how you and I almost never agree on anything. lol

What?!? You think I'm sexy remember? Also... we both think Delano is overpriced.

Quote
It's all good though. It's great to share our thoughts and beliefs in God here.
If God is the only thing we agree on, that is more than enough. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 04, 2019, 02:20:42 PM
BTW:

I don't think any of us are trying to change the other's mind, we are just trying to understand what the other is thinking and why.

Just like there are different churches for different people, there are different ways people walk with God. While you may think yours is the only correct way as stated in the Bible, others may see either the Bible saying something similar but not exactly the same.

I still believe that one of the best ways to show how much you love God is to love people.

1 John 4:7-8

(and yes, despite my disagreements with eyephone I do have love for him and don't want him to leave TI like he thinks I do, I just want him to stop hating on other members :P )
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 04, 2019, 02:32:18 PM

You seem to keep adding caveats. When it comes to believing God's words, the scholars' and others' interpretations don't really matter. It is what YOU believe and you did make it clear you don't think God created the earth in literal 6 days. I'm not arguing numerology as you've accused before. Genesis is the first book of The Bible and if you don't really take His words in literal interpretation there, then where do you draw the line what to take literal or not? I don't think it's fair to take something literal and some other things symbolic. That view is actually pretty popular today because it nicely blends the modern science into their Christian belief. But I see that as a cop out, playing safe, and if further don't really have faith in God. Those are the ones who turn Jesus being born from a virgin as symbolic and not literal. And all this really comes down into this: To gain people's approval more than God's. This is what I keep repeating over and over for the last two days here as the main problem of Christianity today though it's nothing new because as I've said before this kind of fake faith has been around since the Old Testament times. Money is a part of it, taking only music as worship is a part of it, not focusing on studying the word of God is a part of it.


I have added no caveats.  You understanding that the paragraph you just typed is your interpretation of the Biblical text that is not shared by many Biblical scholars.  I mean Catholic church did not even believe in the common person interpreting Biblical text...which led to the Protestant Reformation.  I am not even arguing whether you are right or wrong but rather your confusion with objective fact with your subjective opinion.

You can keep repeating this quote "To gain people's approval more than God's" but you cite no specific examples.  You seem to present a stance that you have a firm grasp of what it means to gain God's approval and deviate from that understanding constitutes trying to "gain people's approval".   

Quote

You keep saying I'm acting like I'm more holy or mature than you or baby Christians, but isn't that what you are assuming? Seems like you are the one taking a view of studying the word of God as more mature act. Switching/hoping around churches is not actually that great. If you are mature then you should serve people in your church, not look for somewhere "more mature." (The word more mature doesn't make sense, but I'm using it to bring the point.)


No...I am literally taking the opposite view.  I am saying that studying the Word of God is an important part with being a Christian but so is service or worship (singing), or fellowship.  They are all equally important.  If you just study of the Word of God like a Benedictine Monk...you will have all the Biblical knowledge but none of the practical applications.  Different people have different ways of learning and applying knowledge...to put an emphasis on any one way misses the point complete MO.

Spiritual maturity is a main theme in the New Testament...for example Hebrews 5.   Yes one is supposed to mature and grow as a Christian.

Changing churches is not wrong or right to me...it's you trying to find a style and a fit.  Sometime the change is voluntary...sometime it's not.  Sometimes you grow beyond a church and sometimes the church changes directions.  The church stated in the Bible is not a singular building or location (otherwise, we would all need to go to Jerusalem) and the disciples and other early Christians (including Paul) moved around churches all the time to help them grew. 

Quote

I apologize agin to any non-believers or even to you if any of my words hurt your feelings. But I still haven't changed my views on this matter of belief of Christianity. It must have been either my poor writing skills or your own interpretation of my words if you still think I kept changing my mind (which you accused me of), but what I'm saying is still the same. To bring my belief even further, I believe in science for many things, but I don't believe in the science that goes against The Bible at all. I take God's words over science. Period.

I am not trying to convince you of anything.  It's not my job to.  I can only tell you what I believe and we leave it at that.  I don't play a pastor on TV or in real-life and I never went to seminary.  Your view that somehow God is incompatible with science is illogical and nonsensical to me because God created this world, the physical and natural laws of it, and for people to be able to reach an understanding of those laws through science and logic.  In my view, they don't conflict at all unless you are looking to hold on to some hyper technical reading of the words in the Bible.  But again..that's my view, you don't have to agree.  I just don't care that you think that I should have to repent because I disagree.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 04, 2019, 03:15:36 PM

You seem to keep adding caveats. When it comes to believing God's words, the scholars' and others' interpretations don't really matter. It is what YOU believe and you did make it clear you don't think God created the earth in literal 6 days. I'm not arguing numerology as you've accused before. Genesis is the first book of The Bible and if you don't really take His words in literal interpretation there, then where do you draw the line what to take literal or not? I don't think it's fair to take something literal and some other things symbolic. That view is actually pretty popular today because it nicely blends the modern science into their Christian belief. But I see that as a cop out, playing safe, and if further don't really have faith in God. Those are the ones who turn Jesus being born from a virgin as symbolic and not literal. And all this really comes down into this: To gain people's approval more than God's. This is what I keep repeating over and over for the last two days here as the main problem of Christianity today though it's nothing new because as I've said before this kind of fake faith has been around since the Old Testament times. Money is a part of it, taking only music as worship is a part of it, not focusing on studying the word of God is a part of it.


I have added no caveats.  You understanding that the paragraph you just typed is your interpretation of the Biblical text that is not shared by many Biblical scholars.  I mean Catholic church did not even believe in the common person interpreting Biblical text...which led to the Protestant Reformation.  I am not even arguing whether you are right or wrong but rather your confusion with objective fact with your subjective opinion.

You can keep repeating this quote "To gain people's approval more than God's" but you cite no specific examples.  You seem to present a stance that you have a firm grasp of what it means to gain God's approval and deviate from that understanding constitutes trying to "gain people's approval".   

Quote

You keep saying I'm acting like I'm more holy or mature than you or baby Christians, but isn't that what you are assuming? Seems like you are the one taking a view of studying the word of God as more mature act. Switching/hoping around churches is not actually that great. If you are mature then you should serve people in your church, not look for somewhere "more mature." (The word more mature doesn't make sense, but I'm using it to bring the point.)


No...I am literally taking the opposite view.  I am saying that studying the Word of God is an important part with being a Christian but so is service or worship (singing), or fellowship.  They are all equally important.  If you just study of the Word of God like a Benedictine Monk...you will have all the Biblical knowledge but none of the practical applications.  Different people have different ways of learning and applying knowledge...to put an emphasis on any one way misses the point complete MO.

Spiritual maturity is a main theme in the New Testament...for example Hebrews 5.   Yes one is supposed to mature and grow as a Christian.

Changing churches is not wrong or right to me...it's you trying to find a style and a fit.  Sometime the change is voluntary...sometime it's not.  Sometimes you grow beyond a church and sometimes the church changes directions.  The church stated in the Bible is not a singular building or location (otherwise, we would all need to go to Jerusalem) and the disciples and other early Christians (including Paul) moved around churches all the time to help them grew. 

Quote

I apologize agin to any non-believers or even to you if any of my words hurt your feelings. But I still haven't changed my views on this matter of belief of Christianity. It must have been either my poor writing skills or your own interpretation of my words if you still think I kept changing my mind (which you accused me of), but what I'm saying is still the same. To bring my belief even further, I believe in science for many things, but I don't believe in the science that goes against The Bible at all. I take God's words over science. Period.

I am not trying to convince you of anything.  It's not my job to.  I can only tell you what I believe and we leave it at that.  I don't play a pastor on TV or in real-life and I never went to seminary.  Your view that somehow God is incompatible with science is illogical and nonsensical to me because God created this world, the physical and natural laws of it, and for people to be able to reach an understanding of those laws through science and logic.  In my view, they don't conflict at all unless you are looking to hold on to some hyper technical reading of the words in the Bible.  But again..that's my view, you don't have to agree.  I just don't care that you think that I should have to repent because I disagree.

I can give specific examples, but don't want to here since it might do more damaging to non-believers. I will write on if you insist, but let's not for now.

A better way would be if you pray about it, He will somehow open your eyes to those issues. I'm not saying He will show you visions or anything like that, but how it will be is really up to God. If you don't think there is any issue at all to begin with, then that's your choice not to care about.

Yes, I'm taking the un-popular view of interpreting the scripture which goes against many scholars. Trust me, it is much more simple and easier that way.

Spiritual growth is something I wasn't really focusing on but I do agree there has to be maturity. And like you and IHO mentioned about loving others, I think then we can really love and serve people more with that maturity in the same community/church. Going some other church that seems more feeding to me is sort of selfish in my opinion, but God could lead someone to move churches so I'm not against it. It's just not so great IMHO.

As for Benedictine Monk, I'm not too familiar with that so I won't make arguments. Although I think if one really really seeks God and does so by reading and studying The Bible, he/she will end up loving others also as a result. Someone who ends up with studying the word of God only and not loving others might not really have been someone eagerly seeking God after all. But only God knows the true intention of our hearts. I think at least if we are 100% honest with God, that would be a great start.

**Added: God created everything including what we call it as science. It can be used great to discover what God has created for us, but sometimes it is used to go against God, challenging how the Scripture's words are wrong and old thus subtly influencing people to believe them which results to completely manipulates and destroys His words (or at least they're trying to though they can't). And when that takes place, I must choose God's words rather than what people know as scientific theories and proofs (which are proven in total different results again and again). This is one of the ways of what it means to have God's approval rather than people's if you want to ask me. I'm not against science. I did not say that. Please read again and stop assuming beyond what I have written in every post.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 01:48:44 PM
I feel I must address this issue of if God really created the earth in 6 days especially to those call themselves Christians who don't literally take the word of God as is.

Did it really take only 6 days while the science says within 10-20 millions years? Two views are very different that one must be a false statement. Not only how long it took align within these arguments but also the age of the earth is stated quite differently between The Bible and the Science.

This is what Wikipedia says when you google how long did it take for earth to form? ,
"In a process known as runaway accretion, successively larger fragments of dust and debris clumped together to form planets. Earth formed in this manner about 4.54 billion years ago (with an uncertainty of 1%) and was largely completed within 10–20 million years." However, The Bible says the creation must have taken place no earlier than only about 10,000 years ago. The gap between two are pretty huge, but we can't ignore the fact the scientists keep adding the caveat of "with an uncertainty of 1%" when it comes to present their results. What it seems to be saying to me is that they are not absolutely 100% sure. Theses are smart scientists full of knowledge with many degrees and they sure know how to play the game when it comes to legal issues. The statement, "with an uncertainty of 1%" will let them off the hook in case the results come out differently in another decade or so.

The Bible, however, says pretty clear without any caveats,
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. - Genesis 1:1-5

These are the very first words of God written in the book of what we know as The Holy Bible. It keeps on going and explains how God created the earth in 6 days with much details. The interesting note is that after the creation of each day, it says, "And there was evening and there was morning," then there it says the second day, the third day and on and on. In the six consecutive 24-hour periods of days are clearly presented here and the very things we call as Day and Night are named and created by God Himself.

To me as a believer, I take the view of the earth was created in 6 days by the word of God rather than something that has uncertainty even if that uncertainty is only 1%. There is also another view, mixing these two theories together and saying a Day in the beginning of the creation was not a literal day as we know today. But then did God make mistakes by calling the light Day and the darkness Night and saying the evening and the morning calling it one day? What other than light and darkness should we expect about? What other day and night system are we talking about? I don't think two arguments can be blended at all and it's either one is right and the other is wrong. This is belief. This is faith. As continually encouraged to abide in His word by Apostles, we must not accept the different gospel, which is fake gospel even if it is the most popular view.

This 6-day creation is only one example of many that how Satan subtly tries to attack the Christians and church with so-called science, the scholars and even the Bible teachers. They can't destroy the word of God as it's written in the scripture so they are influencing societies, cultures, people and then churches that end up teaching God's creation "days" are not literal "days" we know today. Such teachers will meet the greater condemnation as Jesus warned the spiritual leaders leading flocks astray will face the greater condemnation unless they repent and turn to God.

For those who just became a Christian or someone who's interested in Christianity or someone who believed in that popular view of blending two theories together, I would encourage you to learn the word of God and stay true in your faith. Always ask help from The Holy Spirit to guide you to understand His words correctly for that is the main purpose of The Holy Spirit Jesus gave you. Don't get hindered by someone teaching other than what's written in The Bible and interpreting in popular views because that's not really a Christian message but just a motivational speaking which could be done in places other than church.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 05, 2019, 03:01:13 PM
I feel I must address this issue of if God really created the earth in 6 days especially to those call themselves Christians who don't literally take the word of God as is.

Did it really take only 6 days while the science says within 10-20 millions years? Two views are very different that one must be a false statement. Not only how long it took align within these arguments but also the age of the earth is stated quite differently between The Bible and the Science.

This is what Wikipedia says when you google how long did it take for earth to form? ,
"In a process known as runaway accretion, successively larger fragments of dust and debris clumped together to form planets. Earth formed in this manner about 4.54 billion years ago (with an uncertainty of 1%) and was largely completed within 10–20 million years." However, The Bible says the creation must have taken place no earlier than only about 10,000 years ago. The gap between two are pretty huge, but we can't ignore the fact the scientists keep adding the caveat of "with an uncertainty of 1%" when it comes to present their results. What it seems to be saying to me is that they are not absolutely 100% sure. Theses are smart scientists full of knowledge with many degrees and they sure know how to play the game when it comes to legal issues. The statement, "with an uncertainty of 1%" will let them off the hook in case the results come out differently in another decade or so.

The Bible, however, says pretty clear without any caveats,
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. - Genesis 1:1-5

These are the very first words of God written in the book of what we know as The Holy Bible. It keeps on going and explains how God created the earth in 6 days with much details. The interesting note is that after the creation of each day, it says, "And there was evening and there was morning," then there it says the second day, the third day and on and on. In the six consecutive 24-hour periods of days are clearly presented here and the very things we call as Day and Night are named and created by God Himself.

To me as a believer, I take the view of the earth was created in 6 days by the word of God rather than something that has uncertainty even if that uncertainty is only 1%. There is also another view, mixing these two theories together and saying a Day in the beginning of the creation was not a literal day as we know today. But then did God make mistakes by calling the light Day and the darkness Night and saying the evening and the morning calling it one day? What other than light and darkness should we expect about? What other day and night system are we talking about? I don't think two arguments can be blended at all and it's either one is right and the other is wrong. This is belief. This is faith. As continually encouraged to abide in His word by Apostles, we must not accept the different gospel, which is fake gospel even if it is the most popular view.

This 6-day creation is only one example of many that how Satan subtly tries to attack the Christians and church with so-called science, the scholars and even the Bible teachers. They can't destroy the word of God as it's written in the scripture so they are influencing societies, cultures, people and then churches that end up teaching God's creation "days" are not literal "days" we know today. Such teachers will meet the greater condemnation as Jesus warned the spiritual leaders leading flocks astray will face the greater condemnation unless they repent and turn to God.

For those who just became a Christian or someone who's interested in Christianity or someone who believed in that popular view of blending two theories together, I would encourage you to learn the word of God and stay true in your faith. Always ask help from The Holy Spirit to guide you to understand His words correctly for that is the main purpose of The Holy Spirit Jesus gave you. Don't get hindered by someone teaching other than what's written in The Bible and interpreting in popular views because that's not really a Christian message but just a motivational speaking which could be done in places other than church.


I am just going to respond with the fact that there is significant Christian literature disclaiming the literal interpretation of Genesis and the whole young earth theory. 

I do not need to bend my Bible reading to logical absurdity to fit with scientific data...God created science and the Bible...there is not need for conflict.  Satan didn't corrupt anything...God made the Earth and fossils...they are compatible logically and scientifically.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 03:26:31 PM
I feel I must address this issue of if God really created the earth in 6 days especially to those call themselves Christians who don't literally take the word of God as is.

Did it really take only 6 days while the science says within 10-20 millions years? Two views are very different that one must be a false statement. Not only how long it took align within these arguments but also the age of the earth is stated quite differently between The Bible and the Science.

This is what Wikipedia says when you google how long did it take for earth to form? ,
"In a process known as runaway accretion, successively larger fragments of dust and debris clumped together to form planets. Earth formed in this manner about 4.54 billion years ago (with an uncertainty of 1%) and was largely completed within 10–20 million years." However, The Bible says the creation must have taken place no earlier than only about 10,000 years ago. The gap between two are pretty huge, but we can't ignore the fact the scientists keep adding the caveat of "with an uncertainty of 1%" when it comes to present their results. What it seems to be saying to me is that they are not absolutely 100% sure. Theses are smart scientists full of knowledge with many degrees and they sure know how to play the game when it comes to legal issues. The statement, "with an uncertainty of 1%" will let them off the hook in case the results come out differently in another decade or so.

The Bible, however, says pretty clear without any caveats,
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. The earth was without form and void, and darkness was over the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. And God saw that the light was good. And God separated the light from the darkness. God called the light Day, and the darkness he called Night. And there was evening and there was morning, the first day. - Genesis 1:1-5

These are the very first words of God written in the book of what we know as The Holy Bible. It keeps on going and explains how God created the earth in 6 days with much details. The interesting note is that after the creation of each day, it says, "And there was evening and there was morning," then there it says the second day, the third day and on and on. In the six consecutive 24-hour periods of days are clearly presented here and the very things we call as Day and Night are named and created by God Himself.

To me as a believer, I take the view of the earth was created in 6 days by the word of God rather than something that has uncertainty even if that uncertainty is only 1%. There is also another view, mixing these two theories together and saying a Day in the beginning of the creation was not a literal day as we know today. But then did God make mistakes by calling the light Day and the darkness Night and saying the evening and the morning calling it one day? What other than light and darkness should we expect about? What other day and night system are we talking about? I don't think two arguments can be blended at all and it's either one is right and the other is wrong. This is belief. This is faith. As continually encouraged to abide in His word by Apostles, we must not accept the different gospel, which is fake gospel even if it is the most popular view.

This 6-day creation is only one example of many that how Satan subtly tries to attack the Christians and church with so-called science, the scholars and even the Bible teachers. They can't destroy the word of God as it's written in the scripture so they are influencing societies, cultures, people and then churches that end up teaching God's creation "days" are not literal "days" we know today. Such teachers will meet the greater condemnation as Jesus warned the spiritual leaders leading flocks astray will face the greater condemnation unless they repent and turn to God.

For those who just became a Christian or someone who's interested in Christianity or someone who believed in that popular view of blending two theories together, I would encourage you to learn the word of God and stay true in your faith. Always ask help from The Holy Spirit to guide you to understand His words correctly for that is the main purpose of The Holy Spirit Jesus gave you. Don't get hindered by someone teaching other than what's written in The Bible and interpreting in popular views because that's not really a Christian message but just a motivational speaking which could be done in places other than church.


I am just going to respond with the fact that there is significant Christian literature disclaiming the literal interpretation of Genesis and the whole young earth theory. 

I do not need to bend my Bible reading to logical absurdity to fit with scientific data...God created science and the Bible...there is not need for conflict.  Satan didn't corrupt anything...God made the Earth and fossils...they are compatible logically and scientifically.

"But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong" - 1 Corinthians 1:27

Please choose the word of God over the well known or any literatures in this world especially if you call yourself a Christian and have hunger to know Christ correctly. Brilliant scientists and even so-called Christian authors are living in the lies of Satan trying to corrupt the gospel some even without knowing it themselves when they disclaim the literal interpretation of Genesis. I didn't write any scientific data here to prove the Bible if you haven't read my post. I would encourage you to read when you have time. Satan did corrupt everything God created, but one day He will restore everything and we live to hope to see that day soon.

I really hope and pray you will believe and live by the truth not by things of this world. Only The Holy Spirit can do that so I will keep presenting what's true and will keep praying for you.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 05, 2019, 03:36:54 PM

"But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong" - 1 Corinthians 1:27

Please choose the word of God over the well known or any literatures in this world especially if you call yourself a Christian and have hunger to know Christ correctly. Brilliant scientists and even so-called Christian authors are living in the lies of Satan trying to corrupt the gospel some even without knowing it themselves when they disclaim the literal interpretation of Genesis. I didn't write any scientific data here to prove the Bible if you haven't read my post. I would encourage you to read when you have time. Satan did corrupt everything God created, but one day He will restore everything and we live to hope to see that day soon.

I really hope and pray you will believe and live by the truth not by things of this world. Only The Holy Spirit can do that so I will keep presenting what's true and will keep praying for you.

Again...you confuse your opinion and interpretations of the Bible with objective facts and then tell others (including me) that we are all wrong and under the spell of Satan.   There is literally no discussion or debate that can result from this. 

It is fine that it is your interpretation of the Bible but it's pretty pompous IMO for you to proclaim that you have the absolute truth and everyone else is wrong, which is exactly how we got into this discussion in the first place.  I have my views on what the Bible means and how it is to be interpreted but I don't get to tell anyone else how is it is to be interpreted.   That's way above my (or any human's) pay grade. The irony of the quote that you selected when you are portraying yourself as some sort of Biblical certainty is not lost on me.

It is interesting that you continuous claim not to want to offend non-believer when this is the exact attitude that turns a lot of non-believers off.  "DON'T BELIEVE IN SCIENCE...BELIEVE ONLY IN MY INTERPRETATION OF WHAT GOD SAYS!"
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 03:54:37 PM

"But God chose what is foolish in the world to shame the wise; God chose what is weak in the world to shame the strong" - 1 Corinthians 1:27

Please choose the word of God over the well known or any literatures in this world especially if you call yourself a Christian and have hunger to know Christ correctly. Brilliant scientists and even so-called Christian authors are living in the lies of Satan trying to corrupt the gospel some even without knowing it themselves when they disclaim the literal interpretation of Genesis. I didn't write any scientific data here to prove the Bible if you haven't read my post. I would encourage you to read when you have time. Satan did corrupt everything God created, but one day He will restore everything and we live to hope to see that day soon.

I really hope and pray you will believe and live by the truth not by things of this world. Only The Holy Spirit can do that so I will keep presenting what's true and will keep praying for you.

Again...you confuse your opinion and interpretations of the Bible with objective facts and then tell others (including me) that we are all wrong and under the spell of Satan.   There is literally no discussion or debate that can result from this. 

It is fine that it is your interpretation of the Bible but it's pretty pompous IMO for you to proclaim that you have the absolute truth and everyone else is wrong, which is exactly how we got into this discussion in the first place.  I have my views on what the Bible means and how it is to be interpreted but I don't get to tell anyone else how is it is to be interpreted.   That's way above my (or any human's) pay grade. The irony of the quote that you selected when you are portraying yourself as some sort of Biblical certainty is not lost on me.

It is interesting that you continuous claim not to want to offend non-believer when this is the exact attitude that turns a lot of non-believers off.  "DON'T BELIEVE IN SCIENCE...BELIEVE ONLY IN MY INTERPRETATION OF WHAT GOD SAYS!"

I'm not saying I'm the only one who's right. There are more than you think amount of people who genuinely believe in the word of God as is. Not the majority though, at least what I'm seeing. But then again Jesus also said "Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able." We should take this as warning from our Lord, but it sure is out of His love that He warns us.

What is belief? What is faith? It's not believing in something that might not be true or could have many kinds of interpretations. It's believing in something as the absolute truth and it sometimes is offensive. Like I've mentioned, when we point out someone's sin, most will react with "Who are you to trying to judge me?" It hurts, but needed when we present the gospel. Most if not all prophets were killed because of they spoke God's warnings. They finally killed Jesus too. What was Jesus' first message when he started ministry? “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Irvinecommuter, you might think I'm acting like I'm the only one correct. If no one in TI believes God's word as is, interpreting Genesis literally, then you are right that I'm the only one right. But isn't that your assumption that no one else has the same belief?

If you feel like I'm totally wrong and doing damage to God, then please tell me repent. I'll take that as your act of love of brother in Christ.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 05, 2019, 04:10:23 PM

I'm not saying I'm the only one who's right. There are more than you think amount of people who genuinely believe in the word of God as is. Not the majority though, at least what I'm seeing. But then again Jesus also said "Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able." We should take this as warning from our Lord, but it sure is out of His love that He warns us.


No, you are saying that your interpretation and only your interpretation of the Bible is accurate.  The fact that other people may agree with you does not make your interpretation any more or less accurate. 

You literally and repeatedly have stated that anyone who does not hold the literal 6-day creation interpretation of the Bible as being lead astray by Satan.

Quote
What is belief? What is faith? It's not believing in something that might not be true or could have many kinds of interpretations. It's believing in something as the absolute truth and it sometimes is offensive. Like I've mentioned, when we point out someone's sin, most will react with "Who are you to trying to judge me?" It hurts, but needed when we present the gospel. Most if not all prophets were killed because of they spoke God's warnings. They finally killed Jesus too. What was Jesus' first message when he started ministry? “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Pride is also a sin...the concept that one believes that him/herself is somehow the arbiter of all things Biblical seems pretty prideful to me.  Throughout history and even now, there are significant and divergent views of what the Bible means and how it is to be interpreted.   Is the Catholic Church right?  What about the Council of Nicea?  What about Martin Luther?  What about Joseph Smith?  Who is "right"...who is "wrong"...honestly, only God is the arbiter.  Pharisees believe that they were so right that they crucified Jesus for it.  Paul believe that he was doing the right thing by persecuting Christian until God told him otherwise.  History is filled with examples where people of faith so believe that they are right that they take up arms and force others to take specific and particular belief systems.

One can have core beliefs but to then go out and tell other people, including other Christians, that they are objectively wrong is incredibly and spiritually arrogant.  You can have a discussion and debate about who is right or wrong but one should not be not allowed to say that someone else is wrong and Satan has blinded that other person. 

Faith and belief are deeply personal things.  Your statements continuously ignore the possibility that those who disagree with you also seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit and come to a different conclusion as you.   Instead, you come to the conclusion that those who disagree with you are not in line with God and are being mislead by Satan. 

Quote
Irvinecommuter, you might think I'm acting like I'm the only one correct. If no one in TI believes God's word as is, interpreting Genesis literally, then you are right that I'm the only one right. But isn't that your assumption that no one else has the same belief?

If you feel like I'm totally wrong and doing damage to God, then please tell me repent. I'll take that as your act of love of brother in Christ.

No...that is not what I am saying at all.  I am saying that your belief is your belief/interpretation.  It may be right...it may be wrong but I don't get to tell you that you are wrong...just like you don't get to tell me that I am wrong.   I (nor any other human being) do not get to make that call.  My journey with God has provided me with experiences and history very different from yours...I do not doubt that you believe that you are walking in line with God...don't doubt that I am as well.

Not to mention the triviality of the whole discussion...During Jesus' day, there were three main sects of Judaism, Pharisee, Sadducees, and Essenes.  They all had different interpretations of various aspect of Jewish beliefs and what laws/rules to abide by.  Pharisees and Sadducees took turns questioning Jesus about the technicalities of Jewish law and beliefs and Jesus basically told both of them that they are missing the forest through the trees.   Focus on the forest...not the trees.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 04:37:23 PM

I'm not saying I'm the only one who's right. There are more than you think amount of people who genuinely believe in the word of God as is. Not the majority though, at least what I'm seeing. But then again Jesus also said "Strive to enter through the narrow door. For many, I tell you, will seek to enter and will not be able." We should take this as warning from our Lord, but it sure is out of His love that He warns us.


No, you are saying that your interpretation and only your interpretation of the Bible is accurate.  The fact that other people may agree with you does not make your interpretation any more or less accurate. 

You literally and repeatedly have stated that anyone who does not hold the literal 6-day creation interpretation of the Bible as being lead astray by Satan.

Quote
What is belief? What is faith? It's not believing in something that might not be true or could have many kinds of interpretations. It's believing in something as the absolute truth and it sometimes is offensive. Like I've mentioned, when we point out someone's sin, most will react with "Who are you to trying to judge me?" It hurts, but needed when we present the gospel. Most if not all prophets were killed because of they spoke God's warnings. They finally killed Jesus too. What was Jesus' first message when he started ministry? “Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.”

Pride is also a sin...the concept that you are somehow the arbiter of all things Biblical seems pretty prideful to me.  Throughout history and even now, there are significant and divergent views of what the Bible means and how it is to be interpreted.   Is the Catholic Church right?  What about the Council of Nicea?  What about Martin Luther?  What about Joseph Smith?  Who is "right"...who is "wrong"...honestly, only God is the arbiter.  Pharisees believe that they were so right that they crucified Jesus for it.  Paul believe that he was doing the right thing by persecuting Christian until God told him otherwise.  History is filled with examples where people of faith so believe that they are right that they take up arms and force others to take specific and particular belief systems.

One can have core beliefs but to then go out and tell other people, including other Christians, that they are objectively wrong is incredibly and spiritually arrogant.  You can have a discussion and debate about who is right or wrong but one should not be not allowed to say that someone else is wrong and Satan has blinded that other person. 

Faith and belief are deeply personal things.  Your statements continuously ignore the possibility that those who disagree with you also seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit and come to a different conclusion as you.   Instead, you come to the conclusion that those who disagree with you are not in line with God and are being mislead by Satan. 

Quote
Irvinecommuter, you might think I'm acting like I'm the only one correct. If no one in TI believes God's word as is, interpreting Genesis literally, then you are right that I'm the only one right. But isn't that your assumption that no one else has the same belief?

If you feel like I'm totally wrong and doing damage to God, then please tell me repent. I'll take that as your act of love of brother in Christ.

No...that is not what I am saying at all.  I am saying that your belief is your belief/interpretation.  It may be right...it may be wrong but I don't get to tell you that you are wrong...just like you don't get to tell me that I am wrong.   I (nor any other human being) get to make that call.  My journey with God has provided me with experiences and history very different from yours...I do not doubt that you believe that you are walking in line with God...don't doubt that I am as well.

You are right that I literally and repeatedly have stated that anyone who does not hold the literal 6-day creation interpretation of the Bible are being lead astray by Satan. Oh yes, sir, I do stand by that. But I was arguing just with this Genesis issue, wasn't I? There are many other things we can discuss that I can tell you I'm not 100% sure of yet since I'm still studying and learning the word of God myself, which will be a life long process anyways.

This creation message is at the very front of the Bible and if someone tries to manipulate it, then I must stand by my faith even if it means to call someone Satanic. But then by that I wish those someone will eventually return to God. If we are discussing something I'm not sure of, I would be honest and say I don't know this yet, but this is something I'm 100% sure of and it's sickening to see so many people even Christians are discrediting God's words.

Just like I could misunderstand what you are saying, you could as well misunderstand me. You keep telling me I'm prideful and Pharisee-like so I will ask God for forgiveness if this was wrong. Only He knows my intention so I will be honest with God. I will pray. I appreciate that you pointed it out.

I didn't say I didn't want to offend non-believers. In fact, I do want to offend them and sometimes I don't as much as I should. I fail too. BUT I don't want to show them the ugly side of Christian brothers fighting and dropping names of certain pastors and talk trash on them. That is damaging. That actually is rebuked by Paul in his letters. The reason why I want to offend them is, like previously stated, because I want them to deal with their sin and turn to God. Who am I to point out someone's sin? Well, everyone is a sinner if you literally take the Bible and we must bring the importance of sin and repentance as that was what Jesus was doing.



Instead of naming wrong pastors and churches (in my opinion), I will name some pastors I would encourage you to listen to or read books of if your heart desires - Paul Washer, John F. MacArthur, R.C. Sproul (RIP), John Piper, and even Charles Spurgeon.

Most are old or dead, but I couldn't find much younger ones yet. Hopefully there will be more...
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 05, 2019, 04:45:44 PM

You are right that I literally and repeatedly have stated that anyone who does not hold the literal 6-day creation interpretation of the Bible are being lead astray by Satan. Oh yes, sir, I do stand by that. But I was arguing just with this Genesis issue, wasn't I? There are many other things we can discuss that I can tell you I'm not 100% sure of yet since I'm still studying and learning the word of God myself, which will be a life long process anyways.

This creation message is at the very front of the Bible and if someone tries to manipulate it, then I must stand by my faith even if it means to call someone Satanic. But then by that I wish those someone will eventually return to God. If we are discussing something I'm not sure of, I would be honest and say I don't know this yet, but this is something I'm 100% sure of and it's sickening to see so many people even Christians are discrediting God's words.


So, you are not sure about interpretation of other parts of the Bible but absolutely 100% sure about the interpretation of Genesis.   That is bridge that I will never be able to reach...certainly not something as trivial as whether God did or did not actual create the universe in 6 days. 

What if I told you that I prayed about this and asked the Holy Spirit about it and I am absolutely 100% sure that one should not take a literal reading of the 6-day narrative regarding creation in Genesis?

Quote
Just like I could misunderstand what you are saying, you could as well misunderstand me. You keep telling me I'm prideful and Pharisee-like so I will ask God for forgiveness if this was wrong. Only He knows my intention so I will be honest with God. I will pray. I appreciate that you pointed it out.

Again, it matters not to me whether you are or are not prideful.  I don't get to tell you if you are or are not sinning.  I can tell your what I observe and see but I don't get to make that call re sin.  That's something that God gets to do.  I don't have the spiritual authority to do that. 

Quote
I didn't say I didn't want to offend non-believers. In fact, I do want to offend them and sometimes I don't as much as I should. I fail too. BUT I don't want to show them the ugly side of Christian brothers fighting and dropping names of certain pastors and talk trash on them. That is damaging. That actually is rebuked by Paul in his letters. The reason why I want to offend them is, like previously stated, because I want them to deal with their sin and turn to God. Who am I to point out someone's sin? Well, everyone is a sinner if you literally take the Bible and we must bring the importance of sin and repentance as that was what Jesus was doing.

And yet you felt it proper and necessary to rebuke those who do not take a literal interpretation of the 6-day creation.

Jesus came in love..not in condemnation.  He came to show believes and non-believers that God is Love and Forgiveness.  This shock therapy concept of spreading God's word is contrary to everything that I read Jesus and the Gospel to stand for.  If everyone is a sinner, why not just accept them as they are...introduce them to Jesus and let Jesus/God do the work?  How many people do you think gets saved because they have an Encounter on the road to Damascus?  Even in the gospel, Jesus told stories and parable and took time to heal and talk to people.  That's what lead people to him, not him screaming at people that they are sinful.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 05:13:47 PM

You are right that I literally and repeatedly have stated that anyone who does not hold the literal 6-day creation interpretation of the Bible are being lead astray by Satan. Oh yes, sir, I do stand by that. But I was arguing just with this Genesis issue, wasn't I? There are many other things we can discuss that I can tell you I'm not 100% sure of yet since I'm still studying and learning the word of God myself, which will be a life long process anyways.

This creation message is at the very front of the Bible and if someone tries to manipulate it, then I must stand by my faith even if it means to call someone Satanic. But then by that I wish those someone will eventually return to God. If we are discussing something I'm not sure of, I would be honest and say I don't know this yet, but this is something I'm 100% sure of and it's sickening to see so many people even Christians are discrediting God's words.


So, you are not sure about interpretation of other parts of the Bible but absolutely 100% sure about the interpretation of Genesis.   That is bridge that I will never be able to reach...certainly not something as trivial as whether God did or did not actual create the universe in 6 days. 

What if I told you that I prayed about this and asked the Holy Spirit about it and I am absolutely 100% sure that one should not take a literal reading of the 6-day narrative regarding creation in Genesis?

Quote
Just like I could misunderstand what you are saying, you could as well misunderstand me. You keep telling me I'm prideful and Pharisee-like so I will ask God for forgiveness if this was wrong. Only He knows my intention so I will be honest with God. I will pray. I appreciate that you pointed it out.

Again, it matters not to me whether you are or are not prideful.  I don't get to tell you if you are or are not sinning.  I can tell your what I observe and see but I don't get to make that call re sin.  That's something that God gets to do.  I don't have the spiritual authority to do that. 

Quote
I didn't say I didn't want to offend non-believers. In fact, I do want to offend them and sometimes I don't as much as I should. I fail too. BUT I don't want to show them the ugly side of Christian brothers fighting and dropping names of certain pastors and talk trash on them. That is damaging. That actually is rebuked by Paul in his letters. The reason why I want to offend them is, like previously stated, because I want them to deal with their sin and turn to God. Who am I to point out someone's sin? Well, everyone is a sinner if you literally take the Bible and we must bring the importance of sin and repentance as that was what Jesus was doing.

And yet you felt it proper and necessary to rebuke those who do not take a literal interpretation of the 6-day creation.

Jesus came in love..not in condemnation.  He came to show believes and non-believers that God is Love and Forgiveness.  This shock therapy concept of spreading God's word is contrary to everything that I read Jesus and the Gospel to stand for.  If everyone is a sinner, why not just accept them as they are...introduce them to Jesus and let Jesus/God do the work?  How many people do you think gets saved because they have an Encounter on the road to Damascus?  Even in the gospel, Jesus told stories and parable and took time to heal and talk to people.  That's what lead people to him, not him screaming at people that they are sinful.

Irvinecommuter,

Since now you finally said you are not sure about this 6-day creation, let's just move on for now. Again I hope you will believe one day. Thanks for being honest finally. But like you said, if you really really sincerely prayed if you should take 6-day concept literally, God will answer you. Let's discuss again about this then.

You absolutely have the authority to call me prideful anytime any day. Well, you already have done so many times. Haha. But you can do that because brothers in Christ must do so. That way we can stay awake. We shouldn't to non-believers at first though. They first need to hear the gospel.

And gospel deals with sin and repentance.  I didn't even know if that was called shock therapy concept. I don't agree that is a shock therapy. Although Jesus shocked many if not all of the people He met by first His authoritative speech, and more than the first, His message. You said, introduce them to Jesus? Well how do we introduce? Do we just say, "Hey, there is this Jesus I believe, you should check Him out. Follow instagram." Is this the proper way? Ok, I was being a little sarcastic with this example, but seriously, what context would there have to be to introduce Jesus? It's that He died for us because of OUR SIN and more importantly He ROSE AGIAN from the dead concurring the curse everyone can't escape from. You said Jesus came in love and rightly so He did. And what better way to display that but dying on the cross for you?

Jesus started speaking in parables from a certain point when Pharisees kept displaying un-willingness to repent. And those parables were "condemnation" to them believe or not. Those were not nice stories to attract people with soft voice.
"This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand." Matthew 13:13
Jesus is quoting OT which is being fulfilled that those hard hearted Jews will NOT be saved until they repent.
But you're right. He did love His disciples though they still were not fully loving Him back for He said couple verse later,
"But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear." Matthew 13:16

Yeah, maybe He wasn't screaming and yelling at them. But why do you think I am? I might be talking in a total chill mood.  :D

How do we introduce Jesus? We need to tell them about sin, but also how He loved us and died for us. And that's not the end. He rose again from the dead, living forever as our mediator that some day we will be like Him.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 05, 2019, 05:29:31 PM

Irvinecommuter,

Since now you finally said you are not sure about this 6-day creation, let's just move on for now. Again I hope you will believe one day. Thanks for being honest finally. But like you said, if you really really sincerely prayed if you should take 6-day concept literally, God will answer you. Let's discuss again about this then.


And what if I said that I have and I am firm in the belief that Genesis is not to be read literally?

Quote

And gospel deals with sin and repentance.  I didn't even know if that was called shock therapy concept. I don't agree that is a shock therapy. Although Jesus shocked many if not all of the people He met by first His authoritative speech, and more than the first, His message. You said, introduce them to Jesus? Well how do we introduce? Do we just say, "Hey, there is this Jesus I believe, you should check Him out. Follow instagram." Is this the proper way? Ok, I was being a little sarcastic with this example, but seriously, what context would there have to be to introduce Jesus? It's that He died for us because of OUR SIN and more importantly He ROSE AGIAN from the dead concurring the curse everyone can't escape from. You said Jesus came in love and rightly so He did. And what better way to display that but dying on the cross for you?


Here is a good way to do it...get to know the person.  Get to know what that person is about...have a relationship with him or her.  Talk about your own journey and how Jesus has helped you.   Ask him or her about any concerns or issues he or she says.  Invite them to Church consistently and without preconceptions or instructions.  Let God/Jesus do the work.

Quote
Jesus started speaking in parables from a certain point when Pharisees kept displaying un-willingness to repent. And those parables were "condemnation" to them believe or not. Those were not nice stories to attract people with soft voice.
"This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand." Matthew 13:13
Jesus is quoting OT which is being fulfilled that those hard hearted Jews will NOT be saved until they repent.
But you're right. He did love His disciples though they still were not fully loving Him back for He said couple verse later,
"But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear." Matthew 13:16

Yeah, maybe He wasn't screaming and yelling at them. But why do you think I am? I might be talking in a total chill mood.  :D

He spoke in parables because that's how things were taught and passed on in those days. Most of the masses were not educated and learned through parables relating to their daily lives.  The parables were not for the pharisees or even the disciples...they were for the masses and the unbelievers.  Jesus took the time and effort to get to know individuals and their pain and spoke to them in their language.  He hung out with them without condition, he healed them without making them jump through hoops or pay money. 

God is Love...not condemnation.  He wants a relationship with all of his children...a deep and personal relationship.  That does not start with chastisement or rejection of those that he loves.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 05, 2019, 07:00:09 PM

Irvinecommuter,

Since now you finally said you are not sure about this 6-day creation, let's just move on for now. Again I hope you will believe one day. Thanks for being honest finally. But like you said, if you really really sincerely prayed if you should take 6-day concept literally, God will answer you. Let's discuss again about this then.


And what if I said that I have and I am firm in the belief that Genesis is not to be read literally?

Quote

And gospel deals with sin and repentance.  I didn't even know if that was called shock therapy concept. I don't agree that is a shock therapy. Although Jesus shocked many if not all of the people He met by first His authoritative speech, and more than the first, His message. You said, introduce them to Jesus? Well how do we introduce? Do we just say, "Hey, there is this Jesus I believe, you should check Him out. Follow instagram." Is this the proper way? Ok, I was being a little sarcastic with this example, but seriously, what context would there have to be to introduce Jesus? It's that He died for us because of OUR SIN and more importantly He ROSE AGIAN from the dead concurring the curse everyone can't escape from. You said Jesus came in love and rightly so He did. And what better way to display that but dying on the cross for you?


Here is a good way to do it...get to know the person.  Get to know what that person is about...have a relationship with him or her.  Talk about your own journey and how Jesus has helped you.   Ask him or her about any concerns or issues he or she says.  Invite them to Church consistently and without preconceptions or instructions.  Let God/Jesus do the work.

Quote
Jesus started speaking in parables from a certain point when Pharisees kept displaying un-willingness to repent. And those parables were "condemnation" to them believe or not. Those were not nice stories to attract people with soft voice.
"This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand." Matthew 13:13
Jesus is quoting OT which is being fulfilled that those hard hearted Jews will NOT be saved until they repent.
But you're right. He did love His disciples though they still were not fully loving Him back for He said couple verse later,
"But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear." Matthew 13:16

Yeah, maybe He wasn't screaming and yelling at them. But why do you think I am? I might be talking in a total chill mood.  :D

He spoke in parables because that's how things were taught and passed on in those days. Most of the masses were not educated and learned through parables relating to their daily lives.  The parables were not for the pharisees or even the disciples...they were for the masses and the unbelievers.  Jesus took the time and effort to get to know individuals and their pain and spoke to them in their language.  He hung out with them without condition, he healed them without making them jump through hoops or pay money. 

God is Love...not condemnation.  He wants a relationship with all of his children...a deep and personal relationship.  That does not start with chastisement or rejection of those that he loves.

If you end up with that Genesis is not to be taken literally then let me know. But please spend some time praying and asking God before you come to that conclusion. Also I urge you to read, even just the 1st chapter of Genesis a lot with asking for guidance of the Holy Spirit that you would undertand His words correctly. I look forward to hear back on this topic later.

It seems like you might have talent/gift or whatever you want to call with hospitality. You seem to care a lot on relationships with others and you should keep doing that with brothers and even reach out to non-believers. But also know that Jesus commanded us before He was taken up to heaven to make disciples and teach them.
“Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age." - Matthew 28:19-20

For Jesus speaking in parables, is that how you learned from church or your own idea after studying the time of that era? I’ve stated with Bible verses to translate the meaning and you seem to not really get it or not care for it. Speaking in parables was technically “judgement” on Pharisees. No one understood His parables and He always explained to His disciples after to let them know what Kingdom of God is like. There are other parables used not as judgement also, but the main point of Him using was to fulfill the OT’s prophesying about Jews of thise who didn’t accept Jesus. I’ve said this before, but almost all those who were healed and Jesus hung out with didn’t really believe Jesus. They only cared about the food He was giving and interested in miracles. Some were genuine, but only about 120 people were left though after Peter received the Holy Spirit and preached, thousnds repented and came to God.

God is love, but God also brings jugdement. That is how we distinguish good and evil.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 08, 2019, 03:33:50 PM
BTW:

I don't think any of us are trying to change the other's mind, we are just trying to understand what the other is thinking and why.

Just like there are different churches for different people, there are different ways people walk with God. While you may think yours is the only correct way as stated in the Bible, others may see either the Bible saying something similar but not exactly the same.

I still believe that one of the best ways to show how much you love God is to love people.

1 John 4:7-8


(and yes, despite my disagreements with eyephone I do have love for him and don't want him to leave TI like he thinks I do, I just want him to stop hating on other members :P )

You are correct and I believe Irvinecommuter also might be in the same page with you in terms of how we should love one another especially among Christian brothers. I'm quoting in the same chapter you mentioned above,
"If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother." - 1 John 4:20-21

So How do we love in Christ? What does it mean to love someone? Is it by donating much money to the poor? Is it by having relationship with someone rejected? Is it by going to other countries and serve in that region for a certain amount or even a life time? All these could be act of love and God bless those people who's done these, but these could also be done by someone who completely rejects Christ. The Apostle Paul says in his letter before he says the infamous love verses,
"If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing." - 1 Corinthians 13:3

To see what true love is, we must reference from Christ Himself to learn correctly of what it means to love one another in Christ as Jesus truly displayed real love for us. We can see how He loved us first so we can love one another as a result. God showed His love by many things, but clearly showed the world by sending His one and only Son. And The Son, Jesus, showed us how He loves us by obeying the Father, dying on the cross for our sins. And if only it wasn't enough for us to realize what His love meant, He also told the disciples (also so that we have that in The Bible) before He was crucified,
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:12-13

And the Christian message is not done here. If Jesus just died for us and that was it, it doesn't really do much since there are some people brave enough to die for others. Like some of us husbands would die for our wives and children. The fire fighters are always risking their lives to save others. We hear stories of someone dying by rescuing others in the news. Then again, these all could be done by someone who doesn't believe in Christ. (Also the main difference between them and Jesus would be that He was without sin to begin with so His sacrifice was a total different kind, but without getting all technical, I'm just illustrating what we see as a bravery in our lives so we can at least compare.) Those are very honorable acts, but it doesn't contain fully what it means to love one another in Christ. Jesus not only died for us but also ROSE from the dead. He concurred sin and death. That is the full message of LOVE. And those who have this good news must also proclaim that message to others. This is what it means to love. Preach the gospel(good news) and always remain thankful together no matter what the circumstances are because we have no fear in "sin and death" anymore.

When you find some good eatery place, you would want to share that with loved ones and would love to tell them about the place. If you've truly found the greatest love which concurs sin and death, you would definitely want to tell everyone but also you would surely 100% tell your loved ones. This is what it needs to be done in church. This is what peaching the gospel means. This is what it means to love one another. Keep reminding of this love without getting swayed by all kinds of teachings and technics and programs to draw people's attentions. The one and only thing that needs to be done in church is love and that love is displayed by preaching the gospel. There are people out there who masters at relationships. There are people who can give you counseling and listen to you problems. But there is NO ONE who died and rose from the dead for you except Jesus Christ who is the true master of love, the head of church. On that foundation, we can have relationships, get to know each other, stay true in faith as we encourage one another with this gospel message.

IHO and Irvinecommuter pointed some people might say they love God but fail to love others. The 1 John verses I've quoted above says that's impossible. And I agree that there are times we first get to know people and have relationships before we present the gospel as every case and scenario is different. But I'm writing the basic foundation the standard we should have as Christians to love one another. While I believe if someone really really loves God, that person will surely love others, I also believe loving someone is displayed when they preach the gospel. I’m not encouraging Christians to neglect having relationships and helping others. That would not be something a genuine Christian would ignore. Reaching out is great, but you must first proclaim the full message of gospel. And that contains sin, death, Christ’s suffering and His resurrection. Preach the gospel then let God do the work. He will take care of the rest to those people who heard the gospel.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on April 08, 2019, 06:00:03 PM
Mety,
You really have a gift of evangelism. Seriously. I get spiritually lifted reading your posts. Thank you for taking the time to care enough to write these posts.

Panda
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 09, 2019, 12:49:03 PM
Mety,
You really have a gift of evangelism. Seriously. I get spiritually lifted reading your posts. Thank you for taking the time to care enough to write these posts.

Panda

Panda,

I don't know if I have a gift of evangelism. I'm just presenting the gospel as all Christians should, but it's great to know you are spiritually lifted. I appreciate your feedback.

I'm not too comfortable with giving my testimony since it could hinder God and present me more in a sense, but here is my story of walk with God so far, hoping it will only glorify Jesus.



I was born in a Christian family and as far as I remember I started going to church since elementary school. There were many pastors and teachers, some taught about Jesus and some uplifting messages which I liked. I was officially introduced to believe in Jesus when I was 7th grade by one of the small group teachers and for some reason, I just believed without any doubts. I've been reading The Bible since then, about one chapter a day, sometimes more, but I was doing it because I felt like God would punish me if I were to skip a day. This was a wrong motivation though I'm sure God was using this time for me to get familiarize with His words.

I was able to serve in music ministry from college years as all my friends were in that ministry so I was very involved in that for 10+ years. But from the time I was about 30, I  started to realize (which I believe The Holy Spirit gave that conviction) that I've been involved in the ministry only because all my friends were there and I loved music. Yes, I've read the entire Bible couple times by then and all, but I never really fully knew what Jesus has done when He walked on earth 2000 years ago except He died for me. I've decided to focus on His words to know God more. I felt like I needed to know who God was/is more than just the broad picture.

More and more I was reading, I could understand the role of The Holy Spirit was to guide me to understand His words correctly. There are many people who read the bible without actually believing but to use as for their own purposes, without the guidance of the Spirit. I came to believe only The Holy Spirit can give us the true meaning and interpretation of the scripture correctly. And my part was only to "ask." Then the Bible was actually pretty clear and simple to understand. There are no hidden meanings and codes to break as some scholars have accused.

The Old Testament and The New Testament were all aligning perfectly with Jesus Christ, The Son of God. OT was the prophesying of Jesus and NT was the fulfillment of Jesus. From the creation of the world, how people have brought sin into this world, then God giving The Laws, sending the prophets, sending His Son finally, and the concurring of sin with His resurrection were all so amazing acts of Him written throughout. With Jesus' explanation of Kingdom of God from OT and living as a living sacrifice were all making sense then. Now with humble and trembling fear, but also with rejoicing heart, I with many other genuine believers eagerly wait for Him to come back as He said He will for then He will rule over us in His perfect complete Kingdom of God. If I were asked when did I meet Christ, this would be my true moment I've met Christ. I realized of my sin, how there was nothing good in me, and repented of my entire life. I realized I was sentenced with death because of my sin, but Christ died in place of me so that I could live forever with Him. Yes, God saved me from even before I was born or even before the creation of the world, but He thankfully gave me a chance for me to realize after I've lived only about 30 years. Only by reading and knowing His words, it all made sense both spiritually and logically.

From our sinful nature, we tend to take His words from our perspective and distort the meanings and start questioning. I think we all deal with that phase. But only by the Spirit if we ask, God's perspective is displayed when reading His word. It's full of love and forgiveness despite our sins and betrayals on God. I mean He is literally waiting 2000+ years (more years if we include OT) for the humanity to come back to God and not perish. What kind of love is this? And Him giving us this beautiful thing called, "faith" is just a magnificent amount of His patience to us.

I think we as more smart, developed, and logical than previous generations, are not excused with a reason, brain-washed. We at certain point all have the responsibility to come to an honest conclusion to have faith or not. God will meet you if you are really honestly seeking God. Even from my wrong motivations and selfish reasons of using church as my playground with friends, God still came and convicted me to know Him with all my heart, soul, and mind. I can only say this is the work of The Holy Spirit.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 09, 2019, 02:30:55 PM
BTW:

I don't think any of us are trying to change the other's mind, we are just trying to understand what the other is thinking and why.

Just like there are different churches for different people, there are different ways people walk with God. While you may think yours is the only correct way as stated in the Bible, others may see either the Bible saying something similar but not exactly the same.

I still believe that one of the best ways to show how much you love God is to love people.

1 John 4:7-8


(and yes, despite my disagreements with eyephone I do have love for him and don't want him to leave TI like he thinks I do, I just want him to stop hating on other members :P )

You are correct and I believe Irvinecommuter also might be in the same page with you in terms of how we should love one another especially among Christian brothers. I'm quoting in the same chapter you mentioned above,
"If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother." - 1 John 4:20-21

So How do we love in Christ? What does it mean to love someone? Is it by donating much money to the poor? Is it by having relationship with someone rejected? Is it by going to other countries and serve in that region for a certain amount or even a life time? All these could be act of love and God bless those people who's done these, but these could also be done by someone who completely rejects Christ. The Apostle Paul says in his letter before he says the infamous love verses,
"If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing." - 1 Corinthians 13:3

To see what true love is, we must reference from Christ Himself to learn correctly of what it means to love one another in Christ as Jesus truly displayed real love for us. We can see how He loved us first so we can love one another as a result. God showed His love by many things, but clearly showed the world by sending His one and only Son. And The Son, Jesus, showed us how He loves us by obeying the Father, dying on the cross for our sins. And if only it wasn't enough for us to realize what His love meant, He also told the disciples (also so that we have that in The Bible) before He was crucified,
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:12-13

And the Christian message is not done here. If Jesus just died for us and that was it, it doesn't really do much since there are some people brave enough to die for others. Like some of us husbands would die for our wives and children. The fire fighters are always risking their lives to save others. We hear stories of someone dying by rescuing others in the news. Then again, these all could be done by someone who doesn't believe in Christ. (Also the main difference between them and Jesus would be that He was without sin to begin with so His sacrifice was a total different kind, but without getting all technical, I'm just illustrating what we see as a bravery in our lives so we can at least compare.) Those are very honorable acts, but it doesn't contain fully what it means to love one another in Christ. Jesus not only died for us but also ROSE from the dead. He concurred sin and death. That is the full message of LOVE. And those who have this good news must also proclaim that message to others. This is what it means to love. Preach the gospel(good news) and always remain thankful together no matter what the circumstances are because we have no fear in "sin and death" anymore.

When you find some good eatery place, you would want to share that with loved ones and would love to tell them about the place. If you've truly found the greatest love which concurs sin and death, you would definitely want to tell everyone but also you would surely 100% tell your loved ones. This is what it needs to be done in church. This is what peaching the gospel means. This is what it means to love one another. Keep reminding of this love without getting swayed by all kinds of teachings and technics and programs to draw people's attentions. The one and only thing that needs to be done in church is love and that love is displayed by preaching the gospel. There are people out there who masters at relationships. There are people who can give you counseling and listen to you problems. But there is NO ONE who died and rose from the dead for you except Jesus Christ who is the true master of love, the head of church. On that foundation, we can have relationships, get to know each other, stay true in faith as we encourage one another with this gospel message.

IHO and Irvinecommuter pointed some people might say they love God but fail to love others. The 1 John verses I've quoted above says that's impossible. And I agree that there are times we first get to know people and have relationships before we present the gospel as every case and scenario is different. But I'm writing the basic foundation the standard we should have as Christians to love one another. While I believe if someone really really loves God, that person will surely love others, I also believe loving someone is displayed when they preach the gospel. I’m not encouraging Christians to neglect having relationships and helping others. That would not be something a genuine Christian would ignore. Reaching out is great, but you must first proclaim the full message of gospel. And that contains sin, death, Christ’s suffering and His resurrection. Preach the gospel then let God do the work. He will take care of the rest to those people who heard the gospel.

I'm not sure what your point is here.

Just like you say there are people who give up so many things for others but don't love God, there are people who can claim to love God but then are very greedy, judgmental and uncaring.

You should do both. But loving people is usually a great indicator of your love for God and something tangible that everyone can see and may seek to understand. Love for others is at the core of being a disciple, along with your love for God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 09, 2019, 02:50:57 PM

I'm not sure what your point is here.

Just like you say there are people who give up so many things for others but don't love God, there are people who can claim to love God but then are very greedy, judgmental and uncaring.

You should do both. But loving people is usually a great indicator of your love for God and something tangible that everyone can see and may seek to understand. Love for others is at the core of being a disciple, along with your love for God.

I think the best way you can show that you love God is that you love people, friends and enemies.  It's why Jesus has not yet come back...it's to allow His believers to practice love and spread the word of God. 

God is love...love is the ultimate testament to being a follower of God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 09, 2019, 03:25:24 PM
BTW:

I don't think any of us are trying to change the other's mind, we are just trying to understand what the other is thinking and why.

Just like there are different churches for different people, there are different ways people walk with God. While you may think yours is the only correct way as stated in the Bible, others may see either the Bible saying something similar but not exactly the same.

I still believe that one of the best ways to show how much you love God is to love people.

1 John 4:7-8


(and yes, despite my disagreements with eyephone I do have love for him and don't want him to leave TI like he thinks I do, I just want him to stop hating on other members :P )

You are correct and I believe Irvinecommuter also might be in the same page with you in terms of how we should love one another especially among Christian brothers. I'm quoting in the same chapter you mentioned above,
"If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother." - 1 John 4:20-21

So How do we love in Christ? What does it mean to love someone? Is it by donating much money to the poor? Is it by having relationship with someone rejected? Is it by going to other countries and serve in that region for a certain amount or even a life time? All these could be act of love and God bless those people who's done these, but these could also be done by someone who completely rejects Christ. The Apostle Paul says in his letter before he says the infamous love verses,
"If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing." - 1 Corinthians 13:3

To see what true love is, we must reference from Christ Himself to learn correctly of what it means to love one another in Christ as Jesus truly displayed real love for us. We can see how He loved us first so we can love one another as a result. God showed His love by many things, but clearly showed the world by sending His one and only Son. And The Son, Jesus, showed us how He loves us by obeying the Father, dying on the cross for our sins. And if only it wasn't enough for us to realize what His love meant, He also told the disciples (also so that we have that in The Bible) before He was crucified,
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this, that someone lay down his life for his friends." - John 15:12-13

And the Christian message is not done here. If Jesus just died for us and that was it, it doesn't really do much since there are some people brave enough to die for others. Like some of us husbands would die for our wives and children. The fire fighters are always risking their lives to save others. We hear stories of someone dying by rescuing others in the news. Then again, these all could be done by someone who doesn't believe in Christ. (Also the main difference between them and Jesus would be that He was without sin to begin with so His sacrifice was a total different kind, but without getting all technical, I'm just illustrating what we see as a bravery in our lives so we can at least compare.) Those are very honorable acts, but it doesn't contain fully what it means to love one another in Christ. Jesus not only died for us but also ROSE from the dead. He concurred sin and death. That is the full message of LOVE. And those who have this good news must also proclaim that message to others. This is what it means to love. Preach the gospel(good news) and always remain thankful together no matter what the circumstances are because we have no fear in "sin and death" anymore.

When you find some good eatery place, you would want to share that with loved ones and would love to tell them about the place. If you've truly found the greatest love which concurs sin and death, you would definitely want to tell everyone but also you would surely 100% tell your loved ones. This is what it needs to be done in church. This is what peaching the gospel means. This is what it means to love one another. Keep reminding of this love without getting swayed by all kinds of teachings and technics and programs to draw people's attentions. The one and only thing that needs to be done in church is love and that love is displayed by preaching the gospel. There are people out there who masters at relationships. There are people who can give you counseling and listen to you problems. But there is NO ONE who died and rose from the dead for you except Jesus Christ who is the true master of love, the head of church. On that foundation, we can have relationships, get to know each other, stay true in faith as we encourage one another with this gospel message.

IHO and Irvinecommuter pointed some people might say they love God but fail to love others. The 1 John verses I've quoted above says that's impossible. And I agree that there are times we first get to know people and have relationships before we present the gospel as every case and scenario is different. But I'm writing the basic foundation the standard we should have as Christians to love one another. While I believe if someone really really loves God, that person will surely love others, I also believe loving someone is displayed when they preach the gospel. I’m not encouraging Christians to neglect having relationships and helping others. That would not be something a genuine Christian would ignore. Reaching out is great, but you must first proclaim the full message of gospel. And that contains sin, death, Christ’s suffering and His resurrection. Preach the gospel then let God do the work. He will take care of the rest to those people who heard the gospel.

I'm not sure what your point is here.

Just like you say there are people who give up so many things for others but don't love God, there are people who can claim to love God but then are very greedy, judgmental and uncaring.

You should do both. But loving people is usually a great indicator of your love for God and something tangible that everyone can see and may seek to understand. Love for others is at the core of being a disciple, along with your love for God.

You say you have love for eyephone even though you argue him back all the time. But let's say you really do have love for him and your reason of arguing is so that he will stop hating others, correct? If that's correct, why are you trying to stop him from hating others? Doesn't he have his freedom to hate others? Well, I can answer for you. It's because you want him to be more like Christ. Hating others is totally not what Christ would do for He commanded to love. But how do we know that? We only know because it's written in The Bible and whether you read it yourself or heard from someone, you know because it's written there. So we all want to love, but what that's really saying is we all want to be like Jesus Christ. And He fully showed His love on the cross and by His resurrection. This is true love we all are referencing at the end of the day. Doing nice acts doesn't full complete love. Love will produce those nice acts, not the other way around. So if you really want to love someone, present Christ though you already were doing in a way with eyephone. How can we talk about love without talking about Christ? How can we talk about Christ without talking about His crucifixion and resurrection?
(Now, whether if eyephone was hating other members or not is a total different discussion, but I've used as examples to respond to you. Sorry eyephone, for using your screen name often.)

And yes, there are people who claim to love God but then are very greedy, judgmental and uncaring. These are the ones who only "claim." I don't see them as real Christians. They are either lying to themselves or to others. They are either delusional or fake. As I've quoted 1 John 4:20-21, that issue is clear. There can only be two scenarios of lyings on those verses. Either they are lying on loving God or lying on hating brothers. True believers WILL love brothers. This again only can be done by The Holy Spirit and those who have The Holy Spirit are true Christians who love God.

As a side note, if we say someone is greedy, judgmental or uncaring, isn't that another form of judgment on our end also? Only God knows one's intention and heart. Even though that greedy looking person looks to be that way, we shouldn't be judgmental.

I think many times, I'm on the same page with you or with IC. But you guys keep thinking as if I'm saying all those things I wasn't really saying. I don't think I ever said I'm against loving others. I only said what I believe what it means to truly love others whereas the world might disagree since I'm referencing Christ.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 09, 2019, 03:43:06 PM

I'm not sure what your point is here.

Just like you say there are people who give up so many things for others but don't love God, there are people who can claim to love God but then are very greedy, judgmental and uncaring.

You should do both. But loving people is usually a great indicator of your love for God and something tangible that everyone can see and may seek to understand. Love for others is at the core of being a disciple, along with your love for God.

I think the best way you can show that you love God is that you love people, friends and enemies.  It's why Jesus has not yet come back...it's to allow His believers to practice love and spread the word of God. 

God is love...love is the ultimate testament to being a follower of God.

Again, I fully agree that we should love others. But if you disagree with what I'm saying of love, then you should clearly present yours. People especially non-believers you care about are more interested to hear the clear definition of love rather than just using the word alone.

"Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things." - 1 Corinthians 13:4-7
This is the verse we all know as love verse. And it surely shows the characters of Christ. Also further says,

"Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part, but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known. So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love." - 1 Corinthians 13:8-13
This is showing Jesus is the true love surpassing anything in this world even the ones we might see as spiritual things. When we know not love, we live like a child. But when we know love, Jesus, we live like a grown up, giving up childish ways. Living by showing His love to others. We are still unable to perfectly love like Jesus, but when He finally comes, when we see Him face to face, we shall love perfectly like Him finally.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 11, 2019, 04:57:36 PM
Is Jesus the only way to salvation?

This is the ultimate question everyone wants to know yet struggling to accept. I have been emphasizing the importance of taking The Bible as the inerrant word of God. The reason is because the only way to really accept that Jesus is the only way to salvation has to be based off that matter first. If you take The Bible and translate some parts literally and some parts symbolically, then you end up struggling even more since you wouldn’t know which part to accept literal and symbolic. Was Jesus even literally living on earth 2000 year ago? It could go that far wrong if we are not clear on taking the word of God as is. So based on the fact that you believe in God and take The Bible as is without translating in any famous scholars’ or historians’ studies, taking the view of Jesus as the only way to salvation will be much easier to understand. With that being said, you can either stop here or keep reading to find out more. But here is the short answer if you don't want to read all these: Jesus is the only way to salvation because He is the only one died and resurrected with a bodily form appeared before more than 500 people including His disciples. Now if you are curious to know in more detail, please read on.

The concept of salvation is really something we must understand the origin of it first. According to the Old Testament, God chose Noah with the promise of salvation to save him from the flood. God saved Israel with the promise of salvation from Egypt. God delivered Israel from the enemies with the promise of salvation when they were attacked by other nations. Each time, God “anointed” certain people to be filled with His Spirit and used those people to deliver them out of trouble. Ultimately God promised the salvation to all people to save them from eternally dying to eternally living. God the Father anointed Jesus the Son to do this work thus He is Jesus Christ, Christ meaning the Anointed. We need to see why Jesus came to earth and why He died and why He rose again to see the full picture of the concept of salvation.

Jesus was and is and always will be with God the Father. The Father and The Son are One with The Holy Spirit. There is no way a human expression can completely grasp the concept of how this Three in One God is, but as far as we know from the Bible, this is the God we believe in. One way to kind of understand the concept would be there is 1) the Father who manifests through all creation and anything that is good and 2) the Son who is visible like how He walked on earth 2000 years ago and who also has the resurrected bodily form and 3) the Spirit who is the one that works through humans to have faith, do His works, and so on. This is just a little bit of my explanation with my own little language to help understanding the concept. This can’t fully prove nor explain accurately of the Trinity God Himself. The important truth is that Jesus is not any lower than the Father and the Holy Spirit is not any lower than the Son. They are all equally one. Jesus says,
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” - John 14:6-7
Jesus is not only saying if anyone saw Him, he/she saw the Father but also saying He is that very “I AM” from the Old Testament Moses asked what God’s name was. Whenever Jesus said “I am…” and so on this is referring to the “I AM WHO I AM” from Exodus 3:14. So we need to understand the Son Jesus is also the same as God the Father although Jesus Himself decided to have restrictions while He walked on earth such as not knowing the specific time of end days, but this was because He was limited with only a humanly form. After He was risen from the dead, with the resurrected body, I believe He was just like the Father then without any limitations. I mean, He walked through walls and stuff so we are talking beyond what we can understand in the science of physics here after His resurrection. Jesus came to save us from the eternal death. He came to give us salvation from the king of trouble, death. The only way was that He had to die in place of us then He had to rise again to concur death, showing the proof He really is above death. Then Jesus proved to be that very I AM.

Where is this concept “dying in place of us” coming from? We have to go back to the Old Testament again when God was giving Moses The Law to know what it means of “dying for us” is. The night before God delivered Israel out of the slavery bondage of Egypt, He ordered every Israel family to sacrifice a lamb and paint its blood on the entrance door. That night was the night God passed through the land and a household without the lamb’s blood on their door was found the next morning with their firstborn killed. Thus all Israel’s firstborns were spared alive and all Egypt’s firstborns were killed. This sounds horrible if you just heard this without any background, but God before this all happened, warned Egypt with numerous plagues to release the people of Israel to Moses. With Pharaoh’s hardened heart, he didn’t let go of God’s people but kept holding them as slaves with harder tasks after each plague. Pharaoh classically illustrates the destiny of mankind living under the bondage of sin and death without accepting the grace God gives. Although we all die because of sin Adam brought into this world, God still wants us to be saved and the only way is through recognizing His grace. When God passes over the people, people will only have to face the consequence of death because God is the perfect holy God and the sin before the perfect holiness is no more. This was what happened that night in Egypt and God, just as an image of Christ, had them sacrifice the lamb to spare them alive though they equally deserved death. Then after finally Pharaoh let His people go and so on, the Law was given to Israel so that they would recognize their sin and will come to realize they can’t achieve the perfect holiness like God Himself (also so that they would be worshiping God in different and separate practices than other nations where they were doing all sorts of orgies - false religions). Jewish leaders were to give that sacrificial lamb every year celebrating the Passover as an image of symbolic practice of restoring the ‘fellowship’ between God and man, only to be reminded of their sins again and again and ultimately would ask God for forgiveness. But Jesus became that ultimate lamb so that not only we wouldn’t have to sacrifice a lamb every year but also the fellowship between God and us is restored again just like before the fall in the Garden of Eden. Just so that it would be ‘good’ again as God originally intended for all to be from the creation of the world.

Some people might say Jesus was having a success for awhile then somehow His plan failed so He ended up getting arrested and died. Well, that’s not true at all. Jesus in fact knew exactly when He would be crucified. He followed exactly what God the Father has planned for the humanity’s salvation. The spiritual leaders and all those people might have thought they were finally successful to kill Him at the time they wanted, but little did they know that Jesus was the one who timed everything in His control. This is why He kept saying not to tell anyone who He was ‘yet’ and warned some people to not to say anything ‘yet.’ He was accurately timing His death. He was crucified at the time of Passover so that He would be the final lamb for all. Some people also argue Jesus didn’t want to die and that’s why He prayed “Remove this cup from me,” before he was arrested to be crucified. I believe this argument is false. What Jesus meant for “this cup” is not the humanly pain and suffering He will face at the cross. It’s the ‘separation’ from God that one has to deal with when there is sin. Jesus, the sinless, had to be the sinful sacrifice to die in place of us. He, the Son would have to experience the separation from God the Father Himself. That was what made Jesus suffer. But as we know, He obeyed and said, “Yet not what I will, but what you will.” - Mark 14:36
Jesus took away that separation from God and man. That’s why He is called ‘Christ’ the Messiah, the Anointed, the Chosen Lamb to wash away all the humanity’s sin once for all. Again, just so that it would be good again as God originally intended for all to be from the creation of the world.

No one knows where we are going after we die. Well, at least ones who don’t know the word of God will say that. But as for us, believers, we know our spirit will be with God the moment we die (if Christ hasn't returned yet) for the Holy Spirit is in us dwelling and we are waiting for Christ to return so that we will have a perfect body like Him one day. We know and believe Jesus after dying, rose again with the bodily form and still is alive with that very resurrected body. He not only preached He was the only way to God but also showed with His own bodily presence that eternal life is for real through Him. The only way to receive this grace is by “faith.” But first of all Jesus Himself is the creator of faith so He has to give us this faith to believe all that is written of Him. Our part is ‘asking.’
“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it.”- John 14:12-14
This verse is not something we ask God anything and He will do whatever we ask even if it’s evil. Jesus is saying this after “I am the way, and the truth, and the life,” so that whoever asks of believing Jesus as the Christ will be granted to have that faith and further preach this good news to many people which did take place after the Pentecost and so on. This is the promise that whoever asks of believing Jesus as that very I AM who delivers us not only from some kind of bondage we might have in this world such as slavery or difficulties like how it was in the Old Testament but also from the ultimate bondage of all people, death. Christ’s resurrection is the only proof the Apostles could preach on of God’s salvation with eternal life until they were executed or exiled. Christ’s resurrection still remains as our only hope we have for salvation, the eternal life with God forevermore.

What other religion or what other belief system offers this kind of teaching? What God sends His beloved Son to die in place of humanity and promises to just ask and receive this love freely? Many other religions require certain works and achievements for them to be at least accepted. Some promises all kinds of weird sexual orgies in heaven and some offers we will be born as animals and so forth. Those are all not only out of humanly fear systems but also no one really promises with someone dying and coming back to life again. Movies like Matrix are trying to take this concept and distort on their own, but The Bible, the inerrant word of God is clear. Jesus died for you and rose again as a promise for you to receive this freely as faith. And that is the only way to salvation. Like I've said before gospel is pretty offensive because not only it hurts one's sin but it also denies all other religions. You might call it disrespectful or rude, but if Jesus says He is the only way, what other translation should we take that into? I believe all other religions are made by Satan to counterfeit God. While Christianity might be the one that's hard on other religions, Christ never taught to kill or encourage of massacre on any human beings. Christianity is never meant to violate physical harms to another like some other religious organizations do. Hitler, KKK, or all those people who perform wrong acts in the name of God are not real Christians. Those are all false who God actually condemns. We are to present gospel and show love, Christ. What about people from uttermost corners of the world who might not have heard the gospel or even the word, Jesus? I have said this before, but if you seek God with all your heart and soul from whatever time or situation, God will come to you. Deuteronomy 4. He will introduce you Jesus Himself. But also that is why we keep on preaching and preaching so that all will be heard of gospel as Jesus commanded of this. What about those devoted Jews who serve God? Being devoted could just mean being religious externally. If his/her internal heart is truly seeking after God, that person will come to an understanding of Jesus as the Son of God by the work of the Holy Spirit. What about infants? I believe this is also dealt with in 2 Samuel 12 when David lost his infant son saying,
"But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me." - 2 Samuel 12:23
David says he shall go to him, meaning he trusts that baby is with God and this shows how God is love who would save someone who couldn't make one's own decision of whether to have faith or not. David even after fasting and crying, doesn't show any signs of grieves here. Maybe he was even joyful his dead son was with God by then? In contrast, he surely showed much grief when his another son, Absalom died out of his own sin.

BTW, for those of you who might say how come God brought salvation to His people only while the other side of the people were destroyed? Like I said before, all mankind is under God’s judgment since God is the perfect holy God. But here are a few lists of showing how God is a patient God who wants all mankind to come repent and be saved.
Through Noah’s Arc, God was giving 120 years until he finished building the Arc so He was giving a long time for anyone to repent there.
Through plagues and warnings in Egypt, God was giving many many chances for them to repent as well before the Passover.
Through many chosen people by God, the enemies had the chance to see God’s greatness and surrender earlier, but instead, they kept on having hardened hearts and died.
Through Jesus, God was giving them a chance to repent while He walked on earth with His perfect teachings, examples and even miracles, but even after His resurrection, people still denied Him and rather loved their sin more than God.

It’s not really on God for those who choose eternal hell. It’s on themselves. God is patiently waiting and waiting and waiting. But that time will come to an end some day. Hope we all receive this free grace before it’s too late for God said that He really wants everyone to be saved,
"..I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but that the wicked turn from his way and live; turn back, turn back from your evil ways, for why will you die.." - Ezekiel 33:11
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 18, 2019, 11:00:44 AM
Tomorrow is Good Friday. We don't know the exact dates when was Jesus born and crucified, but roughly estimated times are picked and remembered or celebrated for the believers. There is a history that Christianity bought the Pagan holidays like December 25th and so on, but the important matter is that we believers are to remember those moments when Jesus came to this earth and when Jesus was crucified for our sins and when Jesus was resurrected from the dead, now called Easter. The only day we can know 100% sure of is The Lord's Day which we know as Sunday (a day after Sabbath, Saturday) is the day when Jesus was not found in the tomb He was buried. From this day, the resurrected Jesus Christ appeared to many believers and comforted them to remain faithful and shortly after He was taken up to heaven with a promise to give them the Holy Spirit. This is the day since then the Christians started to gather together to remember the Lord and to celebrate Him with The Scriptures and His very own words to proclaim the gospel started by The Apostles and other followers of Christ.

I have briefly covered in the previous post that there are some people who misunderstand that Jesus, before He was arrested and crucified, didn't want to suffer those humanly pains because He prayed "Remove this cup from me" prayer, but that is not what the Bible is teaching us at all. What was giving Jesus so much pain was that He had to be separated from God the Father for a moment. Jesus, the sinless one, had to bear all humanity's sin and become a sin offering in place of the lamb that was slaughtered annually and ultimately in place of us. We were separated from God because of our sin. The perfect Holy God is only distinguished as Holy when He is separated from what is un-holy. Because all humans sin, there is no one qualified to be perfectly holy before God. Thus the result is death. God is holy and forever, but we are unholy and dying. This is the curse Jesus took away by dying in place of us. By believing this, we are born again as 'Holy' and promised to live forevermore with God. Jesus had to bear this separation the sin causes and He had to be unholy for the moment He was tried and crucified. This was what Jesus was saying in that "Remove this cup from me" prayer how much He didn't want to be not 'one' with the Father and despised sins because He is naturally perfectly holy with God the Father. This is how much Jesus loved God the Father. This beautiful relationship is shown throughout the gospel and Jesus finally shows His sincere love again with obeying the Father by dying on the cross. When He prayed that prayer, His sweat became like great drops of blood (Luke 22:44). This is not to be translated as He was scared or tried to avoid the cross because if that was the case, He would not even have entered Jerusalem by the time He did which everyone knew He would be arrested by the Jews with the help of Roman soldiers because of what He was teaching and healing people at Sabbath (false accuse anyways) and so on. He would not have even let Judas Iscariot do what he did. He would not even said He was to be crucified at all from the beginning if He was just scared of the cross. Jesus gladly took all those humanly pains and sufferings for us. By that prayer, He was showing how much we are to despise sin which separates us from God. His sincere prayer is the example we are to set as a model and live like a born-again holy person God made us to be. We can try on our own, but we will fail again and again. Only by the Holy Spirit, we can pray such prayer and live such life.

The history is where we see the relationship of love between God the Father and His Son, Jesus. They are always one and their relationship is telling us what true love is. We, His creation, are participated in that love and are privileged to be called God's children, making us the same status as The Son, Jesus Christ. The amount of suffering Jesus was having to be separated from the Father is the example of how we ought to take sin as and pray to be like Him. May this Good Friday be a day when we pray as such with the help of the Holy Spirit. May it also be the day not just remaining sorrowful but also remembering with joy the glory that came in His resurrection shortly after His death on the Lord's Day.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 12:36:17 PM
"So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead." - James 2:17 (ESV)

Many people confuse this issue while you might have heard it's by your faith alone that saves you, but in some other verses, it emphasizes on works as well. However, it's pretty clear on what God is saying if we base from the entire Holy Bible all together. The salvation is by believing in Jesus is the Christ. That is the only way. Period. But to illustrate easier what it means to have 'works,' we should think of the word 'works' as our 'action.' That action we need to take as a believer is quite simple: to help those in need.

If you come to the pulpit because the pastor asks to come up front if you decided to believe in Jesus after the sermon, does that make you a genuine believer of Christ who are now saved? The answer is you could be or not at all. It could go both ways. If you really have decided to follow Jesus and put away all the sinful life you had in the past, then yes, you are now a genuine believer who are saved. That will make Jesus as your master and you are His servant. That means you will do whatever pleases your Master. So what pleases God?
"Religion that is pure and undefiled before God the Father is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world." - James 1:27

God kept saying this throughout the whole Bible that we as God's people are to take care of the poor, needy and even the foreigners living among us. The religious Jewish leaders were supposed to help the widows and orphans per God's command, but from OT times, they failed to do so. Jesus Himself came and showed this to us even by becoming the very poor among us. But instead of repenting and accepting Jesus as the real Savior, people betrayed and killed Him. Jesus, though people's rejection, rose again from the dead to confirm His deity and completed the Law to love God and others by doing that very 'work' or 'action' He did among those in need. Even with people's failure, God continues to carry His plan and love for those who believe and He calls His servants, friends.

"He executes justice for the fatherless and the widow, and loves the sojourner, giving him food and clothing." - Deuteronomy 10:18

Those who just came up to the pulpit and prayed the prayer but since then didn't show any love to those rejected, poor and needy are probably not saved for they are the very ones James or even God pointed out having faith without works.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 23, 2019, 01:26:09 PM
@Mety:

Your posts remind me of the style of some pastors who over explain. I realize your message is probably for non-believers who may need this depth, but at the same time, this is where I think ELI5 may work better.

Just my opinion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on April 23, 2019, 01:45:42 PM
I think Mety is doing a good job.
 :D
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 02:04:39 PM
@Mety:

Your posts remind me of the style of some pastors who over explain. I realize your message is probably for non-believers who may need this depth, but at the same time, this is where I think ELI5 may work better.

Just my opinion.

Thanks for your opinion.
I'm actually writing these for believers who might think they know all these stuff. If there is any question or disagreement, anyone can always chime in and ask or argue back. I thought this board said the majority was actually a believer. I do understand though because I tend to not read long posts like these in other threads either ;D  But I do go back and read when I get some down time.

For non-believers, I may go with a total different approach. The same message, but like you said maybe something for like 5 year olds or something. But at the same time, non-believers, who are fully grown adults can read these whenever they have time or even when they try to kill some time at a bathroom or something. I'm not really looking for approvals or praise from anyone. I just felt I must write these as I find many TI members here valuable to share what I treasure the most. I didn't know this thread existed. Thanks for bringing back up.

May I ask what pastors you are referring to?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 23, 2019, 02:13:56 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 02:17:43 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

Let me ask you this before I say anything further.
Are you a Christian?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 23, 2019, 02:19:39 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 02:26:38 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 23, 2019, 02:32:08 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?

I make no judgments as to you cause I do not know you personally other than what you post here.  I was speaking as to Christians and the American Christian movement as a whole. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 02:48:21 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?

I make no judgments as to you cause I do not know you personally other than what you post here.  I was speaking as to Christians and the American Christian movement as a whole.

Seems like you're more judgmental toward American Christianity than how you were accusing me of being judgmental. lol.
I don't know why you are so turned off by pastors preach with Bible verses. Isn't the Bible the main source of their message? Are you looking for more personal stories and experiences? I guess you saw some pastors looking like they were being authoritative with verses and whatnot, but I think if they genuinely site and speak to preach the gospel, I don't see what the problem is. Again, maybe you saw someone being hypocritical, but as much as you personally don't know me, are you sure you can say you know them?


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 23, 2019, 03:49:24 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?

I make no judgments as to you cause I do not know you personally other than what you post here.  I was speaking as to Christians and the American Christian movement as a whole.

Seems like you're more judgmental toward American Christianity than how you were accusing me of being judgmental. lol.
I don't know why you are so turned off by pastors preach with Bible verses. Isn't the Bible the main source of their message? Are you looking for more personal stories and experiences? I guess you saw some pastors looking like they were being authoritative with verses and whatnot, but I think if they genuinely site and speak to preach the gospel, I don't see what the problem is. Again, maybe you saw someone being hypocritical, but as much as you personally don't know me, are you sure you can say you know them?

I'm not being judgmental...I am saying that it's ineffective and counter-intuitive .  If the Bible has any level of authoritative sway on a non-believer, they would already be interested. 

Before you try and convince someone of a particular point, you need to agree on some basically ground rules, background facts, and parameters.  You can't mandate that the other person agree with your rules and facts before starting a discussion or debate.  That person is just going to walk away.  Worse yet, it just becomes "preachy" and people are adversely affected by it. 

It is why I mentioned that Jesus sometimes just hung out with people and affected them by His mere presence.   He did not start quoting Old Testament to the masses...He was with them and listened to their plight and addressed their concerns.   He took the opposite approach with the Pharisees because they were so beholden to the law and the texts.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 23, 2019, 05:13:07 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?

I make no judgments as to you cause I do not know you personally other than what you post here.  I was speaking as to Christians and the American Christian movement as a whole.

Seems like you're more judgmental toward American Christianity than how you were accusing me of being judgmental. lol.
I don't know why you are so turned off by pastors preach with Bible verses. Isn't the Bible the main source of their message? Are you looking for more personal stories and experiences? I guess you saw some pastors looking like they were being authoritative with verses and whatnot, but I think if they genuinely site and speak to preach the gospel, I don't see what the problem is. Again, maybe you saw someone being hypocritical, but as much as you personally don't know me, are you sure you can say you know them?

I'm not being judgmental...I am saying that it's ineffective and counter-intuitive .  If the Bible has any level of authoritative sway on a non-believer, they would already be interested. 

Before you try and convince someone of a particular point, you need to agree on some basically ground rules, background facts, and parameters.  You can't mandate that the other person agree with your rules and facts before starting a discussion or debate.  That person is just going to walk away.  Worse yet, it just becomes "preachy" and people are adversely affected by it. 

It is why I mentioned that Jesus sometimes just hung out with people and affected them by His mere presence.   He did not start quoting Old Testament to the masses...He was with them and listened to their plight and addressed their concerns.   He took the opposite approach with the Pharisees because they were so beholden to the law and the texts.

I agree with your point. If a pastor or a Christian out of no where just says Bible verses to a non-believer and forces them to believe in, that most likely won't happen. That non-believer most likely will walk away like you said. Although I do think God still can use that circumstance and let it be a point where that non-believer can think back on what that pastor was saying and so on (think of John the Baptist), I get your point.

However, do you think Jesus was really trying to be effective and intuitive to get more crowd? You say He was just there to hang out with people. But don't you agree that every word out of His mouth was the very living word of God? He Himself was the living testimony of the OT and the new covenant. While I can imagine He did just hang out with people, I can't really find such verses in the NT but I find so many if not all the time He grabbed each moment and opportunity to speak the truth, to preach the gospel, to tell them about the Kingdom. If you find a verse where Jesus was just there to hang out, please let me know. Maybe He did, I don't know. I just can't find such verses.

Pharisees or religious leaders' approach was not really that much of teaching the OT either. If you really study deeply about how the religious leaders at that time were teaching people, they were teaching people with 'ambiguity.' They would go like this - "Such and such Rabbi translate this scripture as this while some other Rabbi says that so you, lower class, won't be able to understand what it is, but it for sure says you need to submit to our authority and pay your money." Out of OT, they made their own regulations (which some are still practiced today) to press the poor and common to get money from for themselves. They were using God's holy words to get what they wanted which was pretty much mammon. (Interestingly this is exactly how fake church or cults are doing to get more crowds and money out of them.) Jesus was condemning that and taught people 'correctly' and 'clearly' without any ambiguity of what OT really was or what God really meant for His people. That was why people saw Him as so much more authoritative than the Pharisees as repeatedly stated in NT.

Another thing to note is that I think you and I both would agree it's not really our humanly work for someone to believe in Jesus. It really has to be the work of the Holy Spirit, right? Then why would we worry so much about being effective and intuitive? Isn't it God's work to convert someone once we proclaim the gospel? To proclaim the gospel I think you do need to site from the Bible verses. So I don't really get what your concern is. You say if a Christian is being preachy, then it's a turn off. Well, I may be seeing something totally different than what you are seeing, but I see less and less churches are preaching the word of God and do other worldly secular things to attract more crowd. I'm not against it, but I'm against it if they think that's the way to win souls to Christ. They might win them for their church attendance, but to really have them believe in Jesus, I think the Word has to be preached to sow the seed.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 24, 2019, 01:07:21 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

Let me ask you this before I say anything further.
Are you a Christian?

IHO, still haven't decided on it yet?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 24, 2019, 01:08:55 PM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

I agree re non-believers.  It never made sense to me why pastors/Christians preach to non-believers by citing to the Bible.   It's an appeal to authority that is unpersuasive. 

I get the allure but most Christians are way into their own bubbles to relate to non-believers.

Well then now you know all my posts were for Christians or believers like yourself like most TI members (at least that's what they said). I do believe you can certainly use the Bible verses to non-believers, but that is something we can discuss later since the way I was doing here was meant for believers who all have read those verses before.

So are you saying I'm in my own bubble and can't really relate to non-believers?

I make no judgments as to you cause I do not know you personally other than what you post here.  I was speaking as to Christians and the American Christian movement as a whole.

Seems like you're more judgmental toward American Christianity than how you were accusing me of being judgmental. lol.
I don't know why you are so turned off by pastors preach with Bible verses. Isn't the Bible the main source of their message? Are you looking for more personal stories and experiences? I guess you saw some pastors looking like they were being authoritative with verses and whatnot, but I think if they genuinely site and speak to preach the gospel, I don't see what the problem is. Again, maybe you saw someone being hypocritical, but as much as you personally don't know me, are you sure you can say you know them?

I'm not being judgmental...I am saying that it's ineffective and counter-intuitive .  If the Bible has any level of authoritative sway on a non-believer, they would already be interested. 

Before you try and convince someone of a particular point, you need to agree on some basically ground rules, background facts, and parameters.  You can't mandate that the other person agree with your rules and facts before starting a discussion or debate.  That person is just going to walk away.  Worse yet, it just becomes "preachy" and people are adversely affected by it. 

It is why I mentioned that Jesus sometimes just hung out with people and affected them by His mere presence.   He did not start quoting Old Testament to the masses...He was with them and listened to their plight and addressed their concerns.   He took the opposite approach with the Pharisees because they were so beholden to the law and the texts.

I agree with your point. If a pastor or a Christian out of no where just says Bible verses to a non-believer and forces them to believe in, that most likely won't happen. That non-believer most likely will walk away like you said. Although I do think God still can use that circumstance and let it be a point where that non-believer can think back on what that pastor was saying and so on (think of John the Baptist), I get your point.

However, do you think Jesus was really trying to be effective and intuitive to get more crowd? You say He was just there to hang out with people. But don't you agree that every word out of His mouth was the very living word of God? He Himself was the living testimony of the OT and the new covenant. While I can imagine He did just hang out with people, I can't really find such verses in the NT but I find so many if not all the time He grabbed each moment and opportunity to speak the truth, to preach the gospel, to tell them about the Kingdom. If you find a verse where Jesus was just there to hang out, please let me know. Maybe He did, I don't know. I just can't find such verses.

Pharisees or religious leaders' approach was not really that much of teaching the OT either. If you really study deeply about how the religious leaders at that time were teaching people, they were teaching people with 'ambiguity.' They would go like this - "Such and such Rabbi translate this scripture as this while some other Rabbi says that so you, lower class, won't be able to understand what it is, but it for sure says you need to submit to our authority and pay your money." Out of OT, they made their own regulations (which some are still practiced today) to press the poor and common to get money from for themselves. They were using God's holy words to get what they wanted which was pretty much mammon. (Interestingly this is exactly how fake church or cults are doing to get more crowds and money out of them.) Jesus was condemning that and taught people 'correctly' and 'clearly' without any ambiguity of what OT really was or what God really meant for His people. That was why people saw Him as so much more authoritative than the Pharisees as repeatedly stated in NT.

Another thing to note is that I think you and I both would agree it's not really our humanly work for someone to believe in Jesus. It really has to be the work of the Holy Spirit, right? Then why would we worry so much about being effective and intuitive? Isn't it God's work to convert someone once we proclaim the gospel? To proclaim the gospel I think you do need to site from the Bible verses. So I don't really get what your concern is. You say if a Christian is being preachy, then it's a turn off. Well, I may be seeing something totally different than what you are seeing, but I see less and less churches are preaching the word of God and do other worldly secular things to attract more crowd. I'm not against it, but I'm against it if they think that's the way to win souls to Christ. They might win them for their church attendance, but to really have them believe in Jesus, I think the Word has to be preached to sow the seed.

IC, Please do let me know if you find them.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 25, 2019, 09:48:02 AM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

Let me ask you this before I say anything further.
Are you a Christian?

IHO, still haven't decided on it yet?

Interesting question. Do my posts tell you otherwise?

Until you posted in this thread, I had no idea you were a Christian so I guess I could have asked you this question too.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 09:54:16 AM

IC, Please do let me know if you find them.

Quote
Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.

While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Mark 2:13-17

Jesus got to know the people and accepted them first and without conditions so that they would accept Him and His message. 

I believe that the Bible is the word of God and that Jesus is God but non-believers don't.  To tell them that they need to accept those concepts based upon my faith is illogical and unrealistic.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 09:56:20 AM
Just pastors... or even Christians in general.

So then if they are meant for believers... seems a little bit like "preaching to the choir" (to use a topical phrase).

There are points in your posts that I am not totally in sync with with but just by our previous discussions, I don't think pointing them out will result in anything other than we agree to disagree.

As you can tell, I seem to be more aligned with IC's stance which seems to be at odds with your own (notice the non-use of "right" or "wrong").

Let me ask you this before I say anything further.
Are you a Christian?

IHO, still haven't decided on it yet?

Interesting question. Do my posts tell you otherwise?

Until you posted in this thread, I had no idea you were a Christian so I guess I could have asked you this question too.

Well, I guess you do believe in God based on what you posted here, but I don't know if you believe in Jesus as the only Savior. Who knows? You might be Jewish or Catholic. You still have not provided the clear answer yet.

I didn't want to talk about God or anything religious in other threads just like anyone wouldn't bring up political stuff to RE threads. Since this thread is about God, then I will freely talk about God I believe in. I try to stay to topic in each thread, of course with some jokes and entertainment like Delano and whatnot.  :D
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 10:13:09 AM

IC, Please do let me know if you find them.

Quote
Once again Jesus went out beside the lake. A large crowd came to him, and he began to teach them. 14 As he walked along, he saw Levi son of Alphaeus sitting at the tax collector’s booth. “Follow me,” Jesus told him, and Levi got up and followed him.

While Jesus was having dinner at Levi’s house, many tax collectors and sinners were eating with him and his disciples, for there were many who followed him. When the teachers of the law who were Pharisees saw him eating with the sinners and tax collectors, they asked his disciples: “Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?”

On hearing this, Jesus said to them, “It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners.”

Mark 2:13-17

Jesus got to know the people and accepted them first and without conditions so that they would accept Him and His message. 

I believe that the Bible is the word of God and that Jesus is God but non-believers don't.  To tell them that they need to accept those concepts based upon my faith is illogical and unrealistic.

Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 10:16:00 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.   

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 25, 2019, 10:21:56 AM
@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 10:25:31 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.

The point of the message the verses you quoted is Jesus calls and accepts anyone even people consider as sinners or sick.
Hanging out part is really not what these verse are saying though I agree He did eat and drink with people, but that's not the focus and I know you would know as well.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 10:27:25 AM
@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 10:29:31 AM
@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

Yes...it does seem somewhat cruel but what is the definition of doom?  If humanity is tainted by sin and unacceptable to God/Heaven...what else can be done? 

If a group of people were born with a condition that has 100% mortality rate in 5 years and 100% contagious...wouldn't you have to quarantine those people away from the healthy?  And if those people could be cured by a single dose of medicine but than rather stay sick than drink it...what else can be done?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on April 25, 2019, 10:32:00 AM
Mety:
Maybe you that you are talking to is Jewish or something. (guessing)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 25, 2019, 10:32:10 AM
@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 10:33:33 AM

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Same as the angels who rebelled against him...separation from God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 25, 2019, 10:35:24 AM

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Same as the angels who rebelled against him...separation from God.

And maybe, just how Jesus loved everyone, it comforts me to think that in the end, God will accept everyone too.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 10:38:32 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.

The point of the message the verses you quoted is Jesus calls and accepts anyone even people consider as sinners or sick.
Hanging out part is really not what these verse are saying though I agree He did eat and drink with people, but that's not the focus and I know you would know as well.

No...it is exactly the point of the verse.  It is that a Christian should be with the sinners and accept them for who they are so that one can bring the Gospel to them.   

If Jesus just started preaching to them about how they are sinners...they would probably just walk away.  Instead, Jesus stopped and shared a meal with them, which if you are focusing on historical and social context is an extremely important (perhaps the most important) gesture.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 10:51:36 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.

The point of the message the verses you quoted is Jesus calls and accepts anyone even people consider as sinners or sick.
Hanging out part is really not what these verse are saying though I agree He did eat and drink with people, but that's not the focus and I know you would know as well.

No...it is exactly the point of the verse.  It is that a Christian should be with the sinners and accept them for who they are so that one can bring the Gospel to them.   

If Jesus just started preaching to them about how they are sinners...they would probably just walk away.  Instead, Jesus stopped and shared a meal with them, which if you are focusing on historical and social context is an extremely important (perhaps the most important) gesture.

Haha I love when you say just "No" like that. It almost happens every time. LOL
No disrespect to you. I just thought it was funny because that's always the first word in your post.

Re-read what I said and what you just replied. It's the same thing we are talking about. You just somehow assume or accuse me as if I'm saying Jesus screamed and yelled at people with so much anger and didn't care about them at all. That's not true and I hope you really understand it someday .

The point of the verse is Jesus called sinners and those sinners responded/accepted Him while the religious leaders did not accept and only pointed out why Jesus was hanging out with sinners. The contrary is the point as almost always was the case in all 4 gospels. Jesus is saying I'm not just hanging out with sinners as you assume or accuse.  Jesus is saying I'm accepting these so called sinners you would not consider as human beings while you were to love neighbor as yourself.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 10:57:19 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.

The point of the message the verses you quoted is Jesus calls and accepts anyone even people consider as sinners or sick.
Hanging out part is really not what these verse are saying though I agree He did eat and drink with people, but that's not the focus and I know you would know as well.

No...it is exactly the point of the verse.  It is that a Christian should be with the sinners and accept them for who they are so that one can bring the Gospel to them.   

If Jesus just started preaching to them about how they are sinners...they would probably just walk away.  Instead, Jesus stopped and shared a meal with them, which if you are focusing on historical and social context is an extremely important (perhaps the most important) gesture.

Haha I love when you say just "No" like that. It almost happens every time. LOL
No disrespect to you. I just thought it was funny because that's always the first word in your post.

Re-read what I said and what you just replied. It's the same thing we are talking about. You just somehow assume or accuse me as if I'm saying Jesus screamed and yelled at people with so much anger and didn't care about them at all. That's not true and I hope you really understand it someday .

The point of the verse is Jesus called sinners and those sinners responded/accepted Him while the religious leaders did not accept and only pointed out why Jesus was hanging out with sinners. The contrary is the point as almost always was the case in all 4 gospels. Jesus is saying I'm not just hanging out with sinners as you assume or accuse.  Jesus is saying I'm accepting these so called sinners you would not consider as human beings while you were to love neighbor as yourself.

Again...why is "hanging out" something bad?  Why does it assume that "hanging out" is somehow not worth of Jesus?  Jesus also spent plenty of time with his family and friends...just to rest and talk.

I am seriously not understanding why you are making this a discussion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 11:25:51 AM
Thanks for responding.

I don't think the message there is about Jesus hanging out with "sinners." Of course He ate and drank with people, but I don't think it was just for the sake of "hanging out." He was there to accept and call those sinners into His Kingdom as you said. To accept and believe Him as a Savior is up to them and their heart to decide, but unfortunately many did/do not accept that as Jesus Himself pointed that out.

Also you need to understand that in those days, there was no internet and iphones and so many cultures and things to do like today.  Back in the day especially in the land of where Jews resided, they pretty much lived with the culture of God's words only. Talking about His words and worshiping Him were the majority of things people did. Since the religious leaders were not teaching the people correctly and only saw them as lower class and sick/diseased people, Jesus had to come and teach them correctly, accepting those so-called "sinner" and "sick." Jews taught with ambiguity, but Jesus taught very clearly until He started teaching with parables.

Sorry...what exactly are you trying to convey?  I am not even sure what you are pointing out or disagreeing with.  There is absolutely nothing wrong about "hanging out"...it's exactly what Jesus did in that verse.  He went there and hung out with the sinners. The mere fact that Jesus elected to even associate with them on any level is an incredible break from the norm.    Jesus modeled the concept of accepting people as they are, without conditions or lecturing.

I also don't know why you feel like I don't understand historical context.  I would disagree with you that people were so how more religious in Jesus' time especially since Israel was under Roman control.

The point of the message the verses you quoted is Jesus calls and accepts anyone even people consider as sinners or sick.
Hanging out part is really not what these verse are saying though I agree He did eat and drink with people, but that's not the focus and I know you would know as well.

No...it is exactly the point of the verse.  It is that a Christian should be with the sinners and accept them for who they are so that one can bring the Gospel to them.   

If Jesus just started preaching to them about how they are sinners...they would probably just walk away.  Instead, Jesus stopped and shared a meal with them, which if you are focusing on historical and social context is an extremely important (perhaps the most important) gesture.

Haha I love when you say just "No" like that. It almost happens every time. LOL
No disrespect to you. I just thought it was funny because that's always the first word in your post.

Re-read what I said and what you just replied. It's the same thing we are talking about. You just somehow assume or accuse me as if I'm saying Jesus screamed and yelled at people with so much anger and didn't care about them at all. That's not true and I hope you really understand it someday .

The point of the verse is Jesus called sinners and those sinners responded/accepted Him while the religious leaders did not accept and only pointed out why Jesus was hanging out with sinners. The contrary is the point as almost always was the case in all 4 gospels. Jesus is saying I'm not just hanging out with sinners as you assume or accuse.  Jesus is saying I'm accepting these so called sinners you would not consider as human beings while you were to love neighbor as yourself.

Again...why is "hanging out" something bad?  Why does it assume that "hanging out" is somehow not worth of Jesus?  Jesus also spent plenty of time with his family and friends...just to rest and talk.

I am seriously not understanding why you are making this a discussion.

1. I didn't say hanging out was bad. I mentioned multiples times I'm sure He did hangout with people.

2. Your assumption of Jesus spent plenty of time resting with family and friends is something not really mentioned in 4 gospels.

3. Jesus' presence and talking were the very Kingdom of God, preaching a message of Salvation.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 11:39:10 AM

1. I didn't say hanging out was bad. I mentioned multiples times I'm sure He did hangout with people.

2. Your assumption of Jesus spent plenty of time resting with family and friends is something not really mentioned in 4 gospels.

3. Jesus' presence and talking were the very Kingdom of God, preaching a message of Salvation.

I am not at all understanding what you are arguing about at this point...actually I wasn't really sure what you were arguing about previously.

I didn't say he did it all the time, I said that there were plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family just to be with them.  He didn't stop being Jesus during those times.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 11:54:05 AM

1. I didn't say hanging out was bad. I mentioned multiples times I'm sure He did hangout with people.

2. Your assumption of Jesus spent plenty of time resting with family and friends is something not really mentioned in 4 gospels.

3. Jesus' presence and talking were the very Kingdom of God, preaching a message of Salvation.

I am not at all understanding what you are arguing about at this point...actually I wasn't really sure what you were arguing about previously.

I didn't say he did it all the time, I said that there were plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family just to be with them.  He didn't stop being Jesus during those times.

I can't find "plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family" in any verses in 4 gospels. You keep saying He did so I thought you knew couple verses, but so far you haven't provided any either. It's only your assumption. What I can find Jesus did in a matter of "going away" was He kept going away to withdraw Himself from the crowd when they were trying to make Him King by their means, a political Messiah.

I'm only asking and talking about this matter because people have misconception of Jesus. Not a complete wrong concept of Him, but people think He was some kind of hipster who would just chill with people. This is a result of not knowing enough Bible especially about Jesus from the 4 gospels. Based on the 4 gospels, I believe His main ministry on earth was to preach the Kingdom by bringing up the importance of repentance and being born again by Him. Of course He did spend time with others. But I'm sure He always taught people about Kingdom since THAT is the biggest treasure one could have. When I say the word "taught" or "teaching" it's not like yelling and screaming condemning so please don't take it like that. I'm sure He taught with just general talking sense also.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 12:03:10 PM

1. I didn't say hanging out was bad. I mentioned multiples times I'm sure He did hangout with people.

2. Your assumption of Jesus spent plenty of time resting with family and friends is something not really mentioned in 4 gospels.

3. Jesus' presence and talking were the very Kingdom of God, preaching a message of Salvation.

I am not at all understanding what you are arguing about at this point...actually I wasn't really sure what you were arguing about previously.

I didn't say he did it all the time, I said that there were plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family just to be with them.  He didn't stop being Jesus during those times.

I can't find "plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family" in any verses in 4 gospels. You keep saying He did so I thought you knew couple verses, but so far you haven't provided any either. It's only your assumption. What I can find Jesus did in a matter of "going away" was He kept going away to withdraw Himself from the crowd when they were trying to make Him King by their means, a political Messiah.

I'm only asking and talking about this matter because people have misconception of Jesus. Not a complete wrong concept of Him, but people think He was some kind of hipster who would just chill with people. This is a result of not knowing enough Bible especially about Jesus from the 4 gospels. Based on the 4 gospels, I believe His main ministry on earth was to preach the Kingdom by bringing up the importance of repentance and being born again by Him. Of course He did spend time with others. But I'm sure He always taught people about Kingdom since THAT is the biggest treasure one could have. When I say the word "taught" or "teaching" it's not like yelling and screaming condemning so please don't take it like that. I'm sure He taught with just general talking sense also.

I feel like you keep setting up strawman arguments/discussions just so you can knock them down. 

Pretty sure I have never used the term "yelling or screaming" in any of the posts on this topic.  Nor have I ever said that Jesus' main goal was something other than preaching the word of God and saving people.     

I am also not sure what this discussion has anything to do with my criticism that the use of the Bible as the definitive source to convince non-believers that they need saving.  Telling a non-believer that they need to repent because they have sinned in accordance with the Bible adds nothing to the equation.  Nonbelievers don't believe in the Bible, sin, or that they are doing something "wrong".

A much better way is to get to know non-believers and find out what troubles them in life and why they do not believe...then you can speak with them about God and salvation. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 12:11:11 PM

1. I didn't say hanging out was bad. I mentioned multiples times I'm sure He did hangout with people.

2. Your assumption of Jesus spent plenty of time resting with family and friends is something not really mentioned in 4 gospels.

3. Jesus' presence and talking were the very Kingdom of God, preaching a message of Salvation.

I am not at all understanding what you are arguing about at this point...actually I wasn't really sure what you were arguing about previously.

I didn't say he did it all the time, I said that there were plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family just to be with them.  He didn't stop being Jesus during those times.

I can't find "plenty of examples in which Jesus went away in the Bible with friends and family" in any verses in 4 gospels. You keep saying He did so I thought you knew couple verses, but so far you haven't provided any either. It's only your assumption. What I can find Jesus did in a matter of "going away" was He kept going away to withdraw Himself from the crowd when they were trying to make Him King by their means, a political Messiah.

I'm only asking and talking about this matter because people have misconception of Jesus. Not a complete wrong concept of Him, but people think He was some kind of hipster who would just chill with people. This is a result of not knowing enough Bible especially about Jesus from the 4 gospels. Based on the 4 gospels, I believe His main ministry on earth was to preach the Kingdom by bringing up the importance of repentance and being born again by Him. Of course He did spend time with others. But I'm sure He always taught people about Kingdom since THAT is the biggest treasure one could have. When I say the word "taught" or "teaching" it's not like yelling and screaming condemning so please don't take it like that. I'm sure He taught with just general talking sense also.

I feel like you keep setting up strawman arguments/discussions just so you can knock them down. 

Pretty sure I have never used the term "yelling or screaming" in any of the posts on this topic.  Nor have I ever said that Jesus' main goal was something other than preaching the word of God and saving people.     

I am also not sure what this discussion has anything to do with my criticism that the use of the Bible as the definitive source to convince non-believers that they need saving.  Telling a non-believer that they need to repent because they have sinned in accordance with the Bible adds nothing to the equation.  Nonbelievers don't believe in the Bible, sin, or that they are doing something "wrong".

A much better way is to get to know non-believers and find out what troubles them in life and why they do not believe...then you can speak with them about God and salvation.

I assume non-believers are not even looking at this thread like I'm not even looking at the political thread. This is a discussion among the believers so I guess that's where you kept misunderstanding me from.

My argument with you overall is that you post something I can't find in the Bible verses to back it up, so I ask you if it's something from the Bible. It was like that even from the Genesis/6-Day Creation issue. I only back my arguments with The Scriptures. You seem to have studied some more stuff outside the Bible sources so you keep bringing those up even the idea of Jesus was just hanging out with people.

It's an argument between you and me. I'm not involving non-believers here.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on April 25, 2019, 12:21:04 PM
I assume non-believers are not even looking at this thread like I'm not even looking at the political thread. This is a discussion among the believers so I guess that's where you kept misunderstanding me from.

My argument with you overall is that you post something I can't find in the Bible verses to back it up, so I ask you if it's something from the Bible. It was like that even from the Genesis/6-Day Creation issue. I only back my arguments with The Scriptures. You seem to have studied some more stuff outside the Bible sources so you keep bringing those up even the idea of Jesus was just hanging out with people.

It's an argument between you and me. I'm not involving non-believers here.

I quoted you scripture and gave you examples but you keep saying that you disagree with my interpretations.   I have not quoted any sources outside of the Bible.  You then keep setting up strawman arguments to knock down that have nothing to do with the original discussion point.  For example, I raised a concern that many Christians have a fundamental messaging problem when it comes to the Gospel and spreading the Word and somehow that went to a discussion about whether Jesus was or was not a hippie.

God gave us the Bible but also gave us the ability to think and be logical.  He gave us the Holy Spirit to guide us in our journey.  Jesus looked beyond the words of the Old Testament and preached and taught people through actions, words, and empathy. 

Honestly, discussing these matters with you is quite tiring because it appears that you keep dancing around the specific issues of dispute while trying to convince me that I am wrong or somehow spiritually misguided.  If you believe that my interpretation of the Bible is incorrect, that's your view.  I walk with God in my own manner and I cannot speak about how others should or should not walk.  I do take some offense to anyone who tells me that my relationship with God is somehow "wrong" or that I am somehow less of a Christian than them because I do not proscribe to their POV.   
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 04:04:11 PM
I assume non-believers are not even looking at this thread like I'm not even looking at the political thread. This is a discussion among the believers so I guess that's where you kept misunderstanding me from.

My argument with you overall is that you post something I can't find in the Bible verses to back it up, so I ask you if it's something from the Bible. It was like that even from the Genesis/6-Day Creation issue. I only back my arguments with The Scriptures. You seem to have studied some more stuff outside the Bible sources so you keep bringing those up even the idea of Jesus was just hanging out with people.

It's an argument between you and me. I'm not involving non-believers here.

I quoted you scripture and gave you examples but you keep saying that you disagree with my interpretations.   I have not quoted any sources outside of the Bible.  You then keep setting up strawman arguments to knock down that have nothing to do with the original discussion point.  For example, I raised a concern that many Christians have a fundamental messaging problem when it comes to the Gospel and spreading the Word and somehow that went to a discussion about whether Jesus was or was not a hippie.

God gave us the Bible but also gave us the ability to think and be logical.  He gave us the Holy Spirit to guide us in our journey.  Jesus looked beyond the words of the Old Testament and preached and taught people through actions, words, and empathy. 

Honestly, discussing these matters with you is quite tiring because it appears that you keep dancing around the specific issues of dispute while trying to convince me that I am wrong or somehow spiritually misguided.  If you believe that my interpretation of the Bible is incorrect, that's your view.  I walk with God in my own manner and I cannot speak about how others should or should not walk.  I do take some offense to anyone who tells me that my relationship with God is somehow "wrong" or that I am somehow less of a Christian than them because I do not proscribe to their POV.

I have already gave you my position on delivering Christian message using the Bible. Having relationship and hanging out with people first are all good. But if you treasure the word of God the most as it is our God the Father's and His Son's message to us, I think sharing it is natural especially to those you really love. Doing so sow the seed that God will do the rest work to convert souls.

The importance of having relationship with people and finding common grounds, I even mentioned in couple posts ago that you seemed to have almost like a gift of hospitality so I encouraged you to continue to do so. The reason you mentioned Christians should do those is because you yourself might be doing those, right? Maybe you are more comfortable in that area as I'm more comfortable with sharing His words especially for platforms/forums like these since we are limited to use words only.

Yes, God gave us the ability to think and be logical. I would encourage you to use those to know Him more. Wouldn't that be a part of the greatest commandment to love Him with all our heart and soul and strength? God gave us those abilities to get closer to Him, not far away from Him. I'm not saying you are getting far away or you're not using those strength to know Him more. I'm only encouraging you as I would say that to any believer. Also your words like those could come as insulting me as if I'm not thinking and being logical. As much as I may have offended you, I could have taken your replies offensive every time. But I apologize if I offended your walk with God in any way. I only try to be clear on what the Bible is saying. I wasn't dancing around or trying to do strawman argument to prove you wrong or anything. Seems like your interpretation of those verses you quoted today is different than my interpretation. I will think upon your view also as I read those verses. I encourage you to view my interpretation as well if you are willing. Maybe both views are His message to us.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 06:01:28 PM
@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Happiness on April 25, 2019, 06:18:40 PM
Which of the following is true:

1. People ignorant of Christianity are going to hell so we should try to make them believers to save at least some of them.

2. People ignorant of Christianity are not going to hell but if they learn about Christianity and refuse to believe, then they are going to hell.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 25, 2019, 10:38:41 PM
Which of the following is true:

1. People ignorant of Christianity are going to hell so we should try to make them believers to save at least some of them.

2. People ignorant of Christianity are not going to hell but if they learn about Christianity and refuse to believe, then they are going to hell.

 Number 1 is closer to being true though we can’t really “make” anyone to believe, we should sow the seed, meaning proclaim the gospel. How that person who heard the good news becomes a real believer is really up to God. We can only seed or plant, then it works in the soil to grow. We can of course help that person grow, but really it’s the soil that determines how it grows. This is one of examples Jesus used. I can explain further if you want to know more.

The latter part of the number 2 is also true though just learning about Christianity could be totally different than hearing the good news, hearing His words. Those who are fully exposed to listen to His words yet refuse to believe are because they want to enjoy their sin rather than to reside in truth.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 26, 2019, 08:13:51 AM

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way.

Maybe you're not reading my posts. Not once did I question Jesus as the only way to salvation, what I questioned is what happens to those who don't believe in Jesus. And if I was Jewish, why would I be quoting New Testament scripture? And why couldn't I be Muslim? Or Buddhist? Or Mormon?

Quote
If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

But what happens if they don't realize this? Does that mean they don't really believe in God?

Quote
Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

This goes back to my previous posts of imposition. Just like this thread, Jews/Muslims/whoever think that their version of faith is "correct", we think ours is... it's a stalemate.

Quote
Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

It can be argued that those who do not believe in (or have not even heard of) Jesus due to cultural/religious reasons are in the same boat as a newborn who dies early, disabled people etc... aren't they also able to receive God's grace and be saved?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on April 26, 2019, 08:18:35 AM
Which of the following is true:

1. People ignorant of Christianity are going to hell so we should try to make them believers to save at least some of them.

We shouldn't spread the word because they are going to hell, we should spread the word to show them heaven... I am a firm believer that heaven is here and now for those who follow God and Jesus. You don't have to die to experience living with God.

Quote
2. People ignorant of Christianity are not going to hell but if they learn about Christianity and refuse to believe, then they are going to hell.

This is similar to my question about those who believe in God but do not believe in Jesus. By the same token, this also applies to people who live just, moral, giving lives (by society's definition) but do not believe in a higher power at all.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on April 26, 2019, 08:36:09 AM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 26, 2019, 10:27:33 AM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

You mean is it ok for a Jesus believer to take medicines, eat shellfish or play instruments in church?

Yes, those are all God's given common grace to everyone whether you are a believer or not. Using/taking those are freely given to us to enjoy and we can give God the glory for those.

However, if eating certain stuff in front of certain people are offensive to them, then we should use God's wisdom to self control to be careful for them. Apostle Paul wrote about this in the New Testament which I can get in detail if you ask, but what it's saying is while we have freedom, we should use it wisely to win every possible soul to Christ.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on April 26, 2019, 10:38:24 AM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

You mean is it ok for a Jesus believer to take medicines, eat shellfish or play instruments in church?

Yes, those are all God's given common grace to everyone whether you are a believer or not. Using/taking those are freely given to us to enjoy and we can give God the glory for those.

However, if eating certain stuff in front of certain people are offensive to them, then we should use God's wisdom to self control to be careful for them. Apostle Paul wrote about this in the New Testament which I can get in detail if you ask, but what it's saying is while we have freedom, we should use it wisely to win every possible soul to Christ.

We are talking about different things. If you research the questions I asked. Then you will understand my question.

Hint: I’m not talking about the Bible, but what people believe. (allegedly)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 26, 2019, 02:19:10 PM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

You mean is it ok for a Jesus believer to take medicines, eat shellfish or play instruments in church?

Yes, those are all God's given common grace to everyone whether you are a believer or not. Using/taking those are freely given to us to enjoy and we can give God the glory for those.

However, if eating certain stuff in front of certain people are offensive to them, then we should use God's wisdom to self control to be careful for them. Apostle Paul wrote about this in the New Testament which I can get in detail if you ask, but what it's saying is while we have freedom, we should use it wisely to win every possible soul to Christ.

We are talking about different things. If you research the questions I asked. Then you will understand my question.

Hint: I’m not talking about the Bible, but what people believe. (allegedly)

Who you talkin about?
IHO? SoCal? or Belly Fever?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on April 26, 2019, 02:20:12 PM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

You mean is it ok for a Jesus believer to take medicines, eat shellfish or play instruments in church?

Yes, those are all God's given common grace to everyone whether you are a believer or not. Using/taking those are freely given to us to enjoy and we can give God the glory for those.

However, if eating certain stuff in front of certain people are offensive to them, then we should use God's wisdom to self control to be careful for them. Apostle Paul wrote about this in the New Testament which I can get in detail if you ask, but what it's saying is while we have freedom, we should use it wisely to win every possible soul to Christ.

We are talking about different things. If you research the questions I asked. Then you will understand my question.

Hint: I’m not talking about the Bible, but what people believe. (allegedly)

Who you talkin about?
IHO? SoCal? or Belly Fever?

Not them at all.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 26, 2019, 02:21:38 PM
Mety: I’m not judging, I was just guessing. Does that person who you are talking about believe in medicine? Does he eat shellfish? Does he think it’s not okay to play musical instruments in church?


@Mety:

Maybe you should re-read the thread from the beginning... I just did and it's weird because I don't think I have found a resolution to this one issue that being a Christian weighs on me:

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God?

One of the cornerstones of Christianity is that the only way to salvation is through belief in Jesus (I paraphrase) yet it is difficult for me to understand that the billions of other people who don't believe in Jesus will not be saved.

I actually feel that is un-Christian-like to think that way, which is the conundrum I have struggled with throughout this thread.

Outside of Christianity, the biggest religions don't believe in Jesus, whether by choice, upbringing, culture etc... so will they all be doomed to be without God for eternity? And this isn't even counting those who do not believe in God.

So you believe in God, but accepting Jesus as the only Savior is to be determined. Am I correct?
I will answer your other questions once you answer this.

For Christians, accepting Jesus as the one path to salvation is tantamount to being called a Christian. I cannot be otherwise.

However, I wonder what are God's plans for those who do not.

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way. The reason I ask this is because if you're not Christian, all my posts might not make sense. Believing Jesus as that very I AM who spoke to Moses is the key difference from Christians to Jews. So if that is not agreed upon, whatever I say might not make sense to you (unless of course The Holy Spirit works through us).

What happens to those who do not believe in Jesus but do believe in God? I have answered this before in one of those long posts. I will assume you didn't bother reading :D so I will say again in a brief version.

If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.

Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.

Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.

You mean is it ok for a Jesus believer to take medicines, eat shellfish or play instruments in church?

Yes, those are all God's given common grace to everyone whether you are a believer or not. Using/taking those are freely given to us to enjoy and we can give God the glory for those.

However, if eating certain stuff in front of certain people are offensive to them, then we should use God's wisdom to self control to be careful for them. Apostle Paul wrote about this in the New Testament which I can get in detail if you ask, but what it's saying is while we have freedom, we should use it wisely to win every possible soul to Christ.

We are talking about different things. If you research the questions I asked. Then you will understand my question.

Hint: I’m not talking about the Bible, but what people believe. (allegedly)

Who you talkin about?
IHO? SoCal? or Belly Fever?

Not them at all.

Man, it's Friday. I'm afraid I'm not completely understanding your question.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 26, 2019, 04:29:42 PM

Ok, so I will take that as you are Christian. You do sound very Jewish as eyephone pointed out. Not saying that's bad. Just saying that since your view of questioning Jesus as the only way to salvation seemed that way.

Maybe you're not reading my posts. Not once did I question Jesus as the only way to salvation, what I questioned is what happens to those who don't believe in Jesus. And if I was Jewish, why would I be quoting New Testament scripture? And why couldn't I be Muslim? Or Buddhist? Or Mormon?

It is very possible a non-Christian would know the Bible verses. But if you are Christian, then you are Christian. 

Quote
If any person believes in God and seeks to know Him more, God will reveal His Son Jesus to that person. The OT saints have not seen Jesus walking on earth. But people like Moses and David, because they were humble and after God's own heart, had the privilege to either see a vision of or prophesy of Christ (I can point those verses if you want). God reveals Jesus to anyone who seeks Him with all heart, soul, and strength. Let's say there is a devout Jewish man who believes in God. If he really really believed in God and wanted to know Him more everyday walking with Him, studying His words, worshiping Him always, God will give knowledge and wisdom for that Jewish man to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and believe that the very OT was prophesying of Messiah or Christ is Jesus. Also the NT says there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of the Lord, finally realizing Jesus as their Messiah.
Quote
But what happens if they don't realize this? Does that mean they don't really believe in God?

It's really up to God to have someone believe in Jesus. Our part is spreading the gospel (with of course having fellowships and loving one another). Jesus is the vine, we are the branches. Only the vine dresser, God the Father, in this example, brings forth the fruit. We can only remain in the vine. We ourselves can't really do this job of converting people Christian. Why am I saying this here? Because we need to know God is in control of saving His people. "What if this and that" kind of question is kind of pointless worrying since that is really in God's territory and we Christians are not to worry but keep praying, loving, and spreading His words with believing that He is fully in control. If you feel the need of spreading more eagerly to reach out to those people who may have not had a chance to hear the gospel, then that's your calling.

Quote
Another way is that God also comes to those who may not seek Him at all. This is grace. By His sovereignty, He also reveals Himself. It could be through missionaries, some random person preaching gospel, or just by a pastor from a TV. God's ways are limitless so we can't think of the only way or the best way of how He comes. He will make Himself known to whoever He chooses to reveal Himself whether that person was seeking God or not. You seem to have much concern for people who believe in God but not in Jesus because it's sad to think they will go to hell. Well then doesn't that make you should be so much more equipped with His words to preach the good news to them so that they will also be saved? You might be that very channel God uses to proclaim the gospel and save others.
Quote
This goes back to my previous posts of imposition. Just like this thread, Jews/Muslims/whoever think that their version of faith is "correct", we think ours is... it's a stalemate.

We as Christians are to believe Jesus is the only way to salvation. That means (this may sound offensive to some) we are in the "right" whereas people with other religions are in the wrong. BUT AGAIN, that is not because we are right. It's because God CHOSE us to be in the right. This is another reason we are called to spread the gospel so that people will come to know the truth and further remain in the truth. But when the truth is proclaimed, the world doesn't always welcome since Satan will try to stop this at all costs. While other religions might persecute, we are the ones who might GET persecuted. That is also another main difference of Christianity from other religions.

Quote
Those who are not able to make up their mind to decide on believing God or Jesus are also under His grace. Such examples could be infants dying early and people born with disabilities who can't think/reason like us. I can also give you verses on these if you want. God always provides His grace to anyone at His will which is He wants no one to die in their own sin. This is not to say there is no hell or God will save everyone eventually. Though He does want to save everyone, those who reject God are really not in place of sharing His glory. Those who end up going hell are really because they chose to end up there themselves. It's because they loved their sin rather than loving God.
Quote
It can be argued that those who do not believe in (or have not even heard of) Jesus due to cultural/religious reasons are in the same boat as a newborn who dies early, disabled people etc... aren't they also able to receive God's grace and be saved?

This is another one that is in God's territory. God knows who are saved and He will MAKE SURE to save those He chose to be saved.

I think you have said it's really hard not to believe in God than to believe. It's because we can see that through the nature, the universe and even the very people with cells and how perfectly everything functions in a way it does. One can only conclude there has to be a Creator, someone who is in control. This is the very beginning that one can start to seek God. He/she may keep wondering upon this thought and even worship God in a way. If that worship is genuine, I believe God WILL make sure to come visit that person. Enoch and Job are examples from the OT who had no knowledge or whatsoever of the Law or anything like that but feared God and called on the Name of the Lord so that He saved them, one has not even experienced death. Others around them at the time must have had a thought of how they loved God and God loved them. That was their way of preaching/spreading the good news of God who saves, which means they all had their chances of hearing the gospel.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 30, 2019, 02:00:59 PM
Ok, so I'm re-reading this thread from the beginning as IHO suggested. I will try to answer questions asked. I will also try to comment here and there as needed.

Arguments for a "God":

  • This earth works too well to be created by chance. When we find the Egyptian pyramids, do we think they were created by chance?
  • Life (including insects) is so incredible that science has not come even close to duplicating it.

Arguments against a "God":
  • Who created him?
  • Why is there a lot of suffering in this world if he is all powerful?

Who created God?
God is a self existing One. He said "I AM WHO I AM" when Moses asked what His Name was. Usual response of any created person like us would say "I was born in such and such and I grew up here and there." We can't say "I am who I am," but that was God's response when asked of Him. No one created Him or is above Him. God the Father, Jesus the Son, and the Holy Spirit are One God. The Father didn't create the Son. The Spirit was not created by anyone either. God said on the 6th day of the earth, "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness..." indicating that God is Three in One, self existing already.

Why so much suffering in this world?
This is precisely because of the "sin" that's brought into the world. God clearly warned Adam not to eat the certain apple in the garden because that would be the only way Adam would recognize that God created him and his obedience would be his worship to God. But Adam's disobedience was the sin thus brought forth into this "good" world God first originated, destroyed by the Satan's deception. God is also allowing Satan to rule over this world for now until Jesus Christ returns and destroys him completely then the world will be good again as God originally intended. That is the day the Christians are hoping to see and eagerly waiting for Him to return soon.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 30, 2019, 02:39:42 PM
My belief is people fear the unknown and believing in God/religion alleviates that fear because the unknown is now attributed to gods doing. They have a leader that will show them the way and give them hope

You have clearly defined what religion is.
Pretty much all religions are baed on fear and work they need to produce to earn salvation or anything good they can get for themselves. This is clearly saying the religion exists for someone's selfish desire.  They also seem to be brain washed or even threatened by the community to believe in certain religion to stay in their system safely. In contrast, people living here or any developed country like us are pretty much "choosing" the one religion that's mostly satisfying your needs, sometimes choosing multiples religions. These are all for fulfilling selfish needs.

However, Christianity is not to be selfish or seek for anything for our own needs. Christianity is about the loving relationship of God the Father and the Son Jesus. Their love relationship is what we are after to reflect while living here on earth and we ought to be thankful, joyful and humble to be part of that truth. Taking care of the weak and welcoming the rejected are all parts of how God is showing us what love is. We should also admit we are still sinful while living here and ask God to turn our lives to be more like Him, to be more selfless. Fear is there since the perfect holy God is all knowing, but we are only to "ask" Him to forgive us and transform us to be more like Him. Then He will grant our prayer and let us be in that beautiful plan of God's loving relationship.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 30, 2019, 03:53:37 PM
To touch on qwerchete's comment:
My belief is people fear the unknown and believing in God/religion alleviates that fear because the unknown is now attributed to gods doing. They have a leader that will show them the way and give them hope

This intrinsic desire to find a solution or an answer for what is unknown, even science's quest for knowledge, do you think that indicates a deity at work? Does that indicate to you that this curiosity is proof that a higher power exists? Or is that the chicken/egg conundrum where because man can't fully answer these questions, he attributes that to a "God"?

My question is this:

If God/god/gods/Mother Nature/[?] do exist, for anyone who doesn't believe in the *correct version*, what happens to them when they die?

Although in Christianity, the belief is only through Jesus can a man be saved, it's hard for me to fathom that anyone who leads a moral, charitable life will end up in "the hot house".

Chicken or egg first? I can tell you with certainty, chicken first. A fully grown chicken, probably a pair of male and female one each. How do I know? Well, the Bible clearly says He created, "every winged bird according to its kind" (Genesis 1:21). Surprisingly, the Bible covers so many questions people have. It has so many, if not all clear answers.

Now to your main question,
Living a moral charitable life is not really what God is after. Of course it's better to live like that than to live as a jerk since that will affect more positively in our society, but you can certainly do those nice things without knowing or believing in Christ.

Now, if you look at Pharisees or religious leaders at the NT times, they were doing nice acts also. They would donate much money or gifts to the synagogues. There is nothing wrong with that itself. The problem was how they got rich and how they were being so proud of their so called nice acts. Whenever the poor people were to come and give sacrifice, the religious leaders would send them back to the front temple and force them to purchase "more clean" sacrifice (animals usually). This was done so that the leaders would make money in their pocket by forcing people to buy more and more each year, disregarding the very ones the poor wanted to present. It was robbing the poor as opposed to the command God gave them to be merciful especially to those in need. This is the very reason Jesus turned the tables and rebuked people at the temple twice during the feast. It was a small preview of judgement. The religious leaders would also blow the trumpets and make such a huge announcement whenever they dropped the money in the bag. This was a hypocrisy at best so Jesus condemned those things also. I believe those hypocritical leaders knew deeply inside their heart that what they were doing was hypocritical. They just weren't willing to repent for they loved sin and the glory of this world more than God.

But was every religious leader then like this? I can't say that, but I can say someone like Nicodemus would come to Jesus and ask Him questions since he knew it wasn't just right and enough to be doing what was going on to be saved. The gospel of John tells us that he after Jesus was crucified showed up to take care of Jesus' body, showing he was genuinely believing in Jesus. There was also Joseph of Armethia who boldly showed his faith. These are the ones who were truly seeking God even in the midst of hypocritical system they were in. I do believe, as I've mentioned before, if someone is truly seeking after God, He WILL reveal Jesus to that person. Many Pharisees also did come to believe Christ as there must have been some genuine ones and it also shows in the book of Acts as well.

This is all to say someone who is in "wrong" religions because of whatever reason, the culture, the background, or even the pressure from others is still exposed to have chances of believing in God genuinely. Just because someone goes to church and say I believe in Jesus, it doesn't mean that person is saved. It's the genuine heart God is after. I'm sure Job from the OT never heard of the name Jesus, but he surely was aware of his sin and feared God if you read the first part of the chapter 1. He was not a Jew. He was a gentile which means he was not in a "correct version" of religion. Yet he was even giving burnt offerings and sacrifices for he recognized sin before God. Many argue this was a time even before Exodus which means before the Law was given. So Job even though was not 100% sure of the concept of Trinity God at first yet, was worshiping Him with his genuine heart. His sincere heart even after all the sufferings he had resulted in knowing of the Christ which God allowed him to recognize as we can see he prophesied about Him throughout the book.

It's not a matter of being in a "correct version." It's a matter of having a genuine seeking heart after God no matter what church, system, culture you are in. Any genuine heart will come to repentance and finally believe in Jesus as a Savior even though that person might have not gone to church once in a life. As for us living in Irvine of USA, who can stay in a church and fully exposed to be in a "right version" all the more, we have no excuse to not to believe. For those outside of such environment, God who is fully in control will do the work to save His people.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Happiness on April 30, 2019, 04:29:29 PM
Many of the signature beliefs of Christianity existed in Jewish society before the birth of Jesus. For example, some of the Dead Sea Scrolls describe apocalyptic beliefs of their Jewish authors which more closely resemble modern Christianity than modern Judiasim but these particular scrolls predate Jesus by many decades.

The first inkling that Christianity may be something different than mainstream Judaism is found in Luke which historians unanimously agree was written by someone decades after Jesus’ execution and who was not a contemporary of Jesus. Jesus’ actual disciples such as Peter, and his contemporary followers such as Paul, never gave any indication that they were believers in anything other than Judaism.

If you were to take a time machine back to the first century and commented to Peter, Paul, etc. about their preaching a new religion called Christianity, they would have looked at you like you were crazy. They would have told you that they were observant Jews and if you want salvation, you must obey the Law of Moses.

Jews, the original Christians.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on April 30, 2019, 05:22:18 PM
Many of the signature beliefs of Christianity existed in Jewish society before the birth of Jesus. For example, some of the Dead Sea Scrolls describe apocalyptic beliefs of their Jewish authors which more closely resemble modern Christianity than modern Judiasim but these particular scrolls predate Jesus by many decades.

The first inkling that Christianity may be something different than mainstream Judaism is found in Luke which historians unanimously agree was written by someone decades after Jesus’ execution and who was not a contemporary of Jesus. Jesus’ actual disciples such as Peter, and his contemporary followers such as Paul, never gave any indication that they were believers in anything other than Judaism.

If you were to take a time machine back to the first century and commented to Peter, Paul, etc. about their preaching a new religion called Christianity, they would have looked at you like you were crazy. They would have told you that they were observant Jews and if you want salvation, you must obey the Law of Moses.

Jews, the original Christians.

Essenes, one of the sects of Jewish people around the time of Jesus were the ones out in the wilderness writing those Dead Sea scrolls copying of the OT. They served as how accurately the Holy Bible is written throughout the generations and some are still kept in churches today.

The Hebrew nation, a Jewish is the God's chosen. No doubt about it. God chose Abraham, his son Issac and his son, Israel (Jacob) because of God's grace purely, not because particularly they were any better than other nations or they did any works to earn it for then it was even before the Law was given by Moses. Those people though did demonstrate acts of faith later on in their lives.

Peter and Paul were Jewish indeed. They first tried to preach to their own people, Jews. When Peter first preached right after he received the Holy Spirit, 3000 Jews around the world who were visiting at the time of Pentecost were converted to believe that Jesus was the Messiah they were waiting for. However numerous persecutions broke out as Jesus promised would happen and the disciples then fled to all other countries which they kept spreading of Jesus as Christ all the more. This is also what Jesus promised would happen before He was taken up to Heaven. Paul (Saul then) was one of the very devoted Jews from the sect of Pharisees of Zealots who persecuted "Christianity" or "The Way" or the church. Those terms were used to insult the believers by the Jews. If they were to say "You, Christian" that meant as if "You, cult." Anyways Paul then met Jesus on the way to persecute Christians and was converted to believe Jesus as Christ also. Though God called Paul to be the channel of spreading the gospel to the gentiles, he also first tried to preach to Jews. Even after many rejections, he still continued and then finally he became an instrument to spread to gentiles and further in Romes as well (possibly to Caesar also).

Both Peter and Paul were confirmed by Jesus in a vision that they are also to accept gentiles which means the good news is not only limited to be heard among the Jews. Peter preached to Cornelius a centurion of Italian and Paul to many other un-circumcisions. They did not prohibit the Law of Moses, but they only preached that the salvation is not by practicing those. Their message was Jesus was the one who completed the Law and by believing Him only you are saved. There were couple times mentioned in the book of Acts that Paul did Nazarite vows as prescribed in Numbers, but those were not as a way to earn salvation. He did once when he wanted to show the Lord his thankful heart and another time when the elders among Jewish believers suggested him to do so so that other Jews would not misunderstand that Paul ignored the Law.

Also the book of Acts shows the transitional periods of Judaism to Christianity (to those who believe). Many Jews still had their habit of following the traditions which is not a bad thing at all as long as the heart and the motives are pure before God, but the transitional period also shows us that Paul started to bring the importance of accepting Jesus as a Savior by faith alone, not by any works or following the Laws, as Pharisees gave burdens to people to do so. Therefore he actually rebuked those Jews who taught in a way that you must follow the Laws to be saved. He also warned churches, especially Galatians believers to see those teachings as a false religion.

Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

Edit: typo
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on May 01, 2019, 07:25:36 AM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on May 01, 2019, 08:32:06 AM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.

Standard POV is that Jews are in heaven because they are God's chosen people but that non-Jews must go Jesus. 

But like you...a lot of things are above my pay grade.  I have enough to deal with myself.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 01, 2019, 02:05:16 PM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.

You can either take the debt paid in full already or you could try to pay the debt on your own which you're never able to complete anyways. Jesus did die for everyone. If you don't accept and believe, then you're on your own to pay for the penalty of your sin.

The same thing applies for Jews or non-Jews. It was never by observing the Law you could be saved. It was always the same from the book of Genesis that you are saved by receiving God's grace by admitting your sins and inequities, asking God to be merciful and forgive you. Those who denied that all went to hell by their choice either Jews or non-Jews.

God particularly chose a nation Israel to be His everlasting nation with His own covenant. This is still kept with His promise and they just need to admit the sinful nature themselves and accept the Savior God already sent, Jesus Christ. Those who accept will go to heaven, those who don't will go to hell.

How the Jews one day all will accept Jesus as Christ? Like you said, there will be a rapture of church before the Tribulation described in the book of Daniel and also in the book of Revelation. The word, rapture might sound weird since many false scholars twisted their own interpretations and gave a bad name, but what it really is is that God will call His church, The Bride back to heaven whether by them dying of old age or take them up to heaven as Jesus was taken up. This is a part where many denominations of churches have their own interpretations each, but I'll state what I believe. I think there will be a rapture of His church, those who really really have believed in Jesus. Those who were just superficial church people probably will not be raptured. Only God knows the heart and He will decide who will be. When will this be? No one knows and those who claim they perfectly calculated the time and the date are all false. Jesus specifically said it's none of our business to know when. Once it really takes place, then people around the world will probably start to take the Bible as serious since what's described in it will start taking places. Jews will be jealous of church (as described by Paul) then they will call on the Name of the Lord, Jesus. Surprisingly many will still deny, Jews or non-Jews according to the book of Revelation. There will be persecutions against God's very people, Israel. This is the time of the Tribulation when the world will be facing the darkest hour. God, however, set a time for such days to come to an end and He will come and save His very own nation then. Those Jews who finally admitted the very One they pierced was their own Savior and who have accepted and waited for Jesus Christ will be comforted by Him and enter His Kingdom. This is the moment all Christians should also be seeking for. Think about how God's own words and promise are finally being completed. This will be a moment when the raptured saints will come with Jesus from heaven and rule over the Kingdom of God with Christ. A beautiful reunification of God and His people. We can talk about A Thousand Year Kingdom and the final rebellion of Satan and all that, but for now I'll leave at where Israel will be saved.

This again is my interpretation of Eschatology along with many Bible teachers who tend to take His word as is without any compromise, without twisting in any human desire. However, having a different interpretation does not mean you're not saved. The OT saints didn't fully have this revelation either, but that didn't stop them to be saved by God. The salvation again is by admitting your sin and repenting of it in the Name of Jesus Christ. This Eschatological theology I explained above though is how I believe Jews, as a whole nation, will come to know Jesus as their Savior one day.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 01, 2019, 03:48:38 PM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.

Standard POV is that Jews are in heaven because they are God's chosen people but that non-Jews must go Jesus. 

But like you...a lot of things are above my pay grade.  I have enough to deal with myself.

I don't know if that's really the standard POV, but that seems a little off with God's character since God is a God who saves people with the same base even from the OT times whether you are Jew or non-Jew. That base is that you have to acknowledge your sin and repent by submitting your life to Him the Creator God who saves from inequities.

What I've written above post is what my take is on Israel. They ARE God's special people since He chose them out of all nations and also He said to Abraham whoever blesses them God will also bless and whoever curses them He will also curse. So we as believers of His word and covenant are to be on Israel's side, but I don't think God's saving grace plays favoritism.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on May 01, 2019, 04:01:16 PM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.

Standard POV is that Jews are in heaven because they are God's chosen people but that non-Jews must go Jesus. 

But like you...a lot of things are above my pay grade.  I have enough to deal with myself.

I don't know if that's really the standard POV, but that seems a little off with God's character since God is a God who saves people with the same base even from the OT times whether you are Jew or non-Jew. That base is that you have to acknowledge your sin and repent by submitting your life to Him the Creator God who saves from inequities.

What I've written above post is what my take is on Israel. They ARE God's special people since He chose them out of all nations and also He said to Abraham whoever blesses them God will also bless and whoever curses them He will also curse. So we as believers of His word and covenant are to be on Israel's side, but I don't think God's saving grace plays favoritism.

I don't really know how that is different than what I wrote.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 01, 2019, 04:09:24 PM
Paul who followed the Law all the more than anyone preached the importance of receiving God's salvation by God's grace, not by the works or following the Law just like how God gave grace to Abraham, Issac, and Jacob to be saved. This is actually what Jews still don't believe today, but there will come a day when Israel will call on the Name of Jesus as their Lord. For now since the "Christians" or even the "Gentiles" have received God's grace, they are the ones who are now being saved. But God surely promised His salvation for Israel also so it WILL happen one day. Hopefully soon.

So this is why I wonder what will happen to those who don't believe in Jesus.

Everyone received God's grace, Jesus died for everyone's sins... how will there be a day that Israel will call Jesus their God? After the rapture?

I guess it's just above my pay grade.

Standard POV is that Jews are in heaven because they are God's chosen people but that non-Jews must go Jesus. 

But like you...a lot of things are above my pay grade.  I have enough to deal with myself.

I don't know if that's really the standard POV, but that seems a little off with God's character since God is a God who saves people with the same base even from the OT times whether you are Jew or non-Jew. That base is that you have to acknowledge your sin and repent by submitting your life to Him the Creator God who saves from inequities.

What I've written above post is what my take is on Israel. They ARE God's special people since He chose them out of all nations and also He said to Abraham whoever blesses them God will also bless and whoever curses them He will also curse. So we as believers of His word and covenant are to be on Israel's side, but I don't think God's saving grace plays favoritism.

I don't really know how that is different than what I wrote.

The standard you said of that "all Jews are in heaven and non-Jews must go Jesus" POV is not what I agree with. You didn't say you agree with it either so I'm not arguing against your opinion. I'm just saying Jews or non-Jews, they all need to go through the Savior, Jesus. Jews don't have the special ticket to heaven without believing in Jesus either.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 02, 2019, 10:32:34 AM
After I wrote the last post, there came a good comparison we could use. How come if Jesus died for everyone, then He can't just save everyone? Here is an example we could use (though can't be exact comparison) to illustrate what we need to do on our end to participate in God's grace.

If someone gave you a free plane ticket to Hawaii or any of your favorite place to be ultimately, would you take it and go there? It's an obvious answer that of course you would. But you yourself would have to do your part to get to that destination. You first would have to confirm check-in, go to the airport, get on the line for all those security check-ups, wait in another line on the gate, and finally need to get on board. The rest is on the air where you just wait until you get to the place. For whatever reason though, there might be people who would not go there because you would either not wanna go through all those checkups and lines at the airport or you would just rather stay home or maybe you just came up with something you think is better and so on. The point is, if you don't do your part, you will not get there. The free ticket is no longer activated for you. The person who gave you the free ticket can't force and grab you to the final destination either. It's your choice.

If you choose to go and get to your ultimate favorite place, you would be thanking that person who gave you the ticket. It's that person who gets the glory.

If you choose not to go, then it's your own fault that you're not there. The person who gave you the ticket has already done much. You just ignored the gift.

God gave everyone the free ticket to His Kingdom. God gave us His Son, Jesus as the way to salvation. Now, we need to do our part to accept, repent, believe, and naturally live as He commanded by loving one another. Then we're on the right path to get to the final destination. If however anyone does not accept Jesus and live on their own, then that person is on his/her own without receiving God's best gift.


Side Note - On that sense, I guess we could say Jews do have a special free ticket to heaven. Probably the 1st class. They still do need to go to the airport and go through the check-ups. If they choose not to go, then it's that 1st class privilege is not any more useful than the economy seats. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on May 02, 2019, 10:40:50 AM
This is where I may stray from scripture, but I don't think Jews have any privileges above anyone else.

We are all equal.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 02, 2019, 10:48:54 AM
This is where I may stray from scripture, but I don't think Jews have any privileges above anyone else.

We are all equal.

I don't know where you are straying from, but indeed, all under the same grace. Though it's clear God first chose Israel. They are like the first son from the prodigal son story Jesus gave. They are the ones God gave the Laws to. Though they share the same equal amount of grace in terms of salvation, they only have much more responsibility to know His words.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on May 02, 2019, 01:24:42 PM
This is where I may stray from scripture, but I don't think Jews have any privileges above anyone else.

We are all equal.

I don't know where you are straying from, but indeed, all under the same grace. Though it's clear God first chose Israel. They are like the first son from the prodigal son story Jesus gave. They are the ones God gave the Laws to. Though they share the same equal amount of grace in terms of salvation, they only have much more responsibility to know His words.

So why them? Do you ever wonder why it started with Israel?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on May 02, 2019, 04:47:54 PM
This is where I may stray from scripture, but I don't think Jews have any privileges above anyone else.

We are all equal.

I don't know where you are straying from, but indeed, all under the same grace. Though it's clear God first chose Israel. They are like the first son from the prodigal son story Jesus gave. They are the ones God gave the Laws to. Though they share the same equal amount of grace in terms of salvation, they only have much more responsibility to know His words.

So why them? Do you ever wonder why it started with Israel?

Maybe God chose Israel because that was the way God wanted to have the line of offspring to have Jesus? Why not from England or China? I think God chose to be the line of Israel because that was the best way it could work out throughout the whole generation if we believe God is the perfect God who is in control of everything and every generation. Technically God made Adam and Eve first so it all started with them.

Also I suggest reading Romans 9. It kind of covers the question you have.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 19, 2019, 11:47:42 AM
God hasn't sent anyone to the hot house. Never has, never will. After a lifetime of rejection on earth, a God of love wouldn't force someone to spend eternity living with him.
I don't think I said God would send them there, my question was would he allow them to end up there if they chose to worship the "wrong" God?

As I said before, many Christians feel the only way into the good place is belief in Jesus, but for those who don't believe in him but do believe in God (like Jewish and Islamic religions), what happens to them?

because they chose not to be with God.   God wants to have a relationship with every human but if s/he chooses not to have that relationship, God is not going to force it.   They just end up in a place where God and all his goodness do not exist (i.e. love, compassion, empathy, etc.).

we really need to separate god and religious.  reading this post i dont know if god does not allow non-believer or christian does not allow non-believer in the good place.

also a quick question, if hilter is a christian, will he be a in the good place right now?

Jesus talked about hell in Luke 16:19-31. This is the example of the rich man and Lazarus. The rich man who had all his glory while alive is now suffering in flames being tormented and even wanting to send back Lazarus alive to warn his brothers. Jesus teaches us though that those who don't receive Moses and the prophets won't receive someone came back to life from dead. Those who don't receive God's word won't receive Christ who did come back to life from dead. If you think there is no hell or think of hell as just a place without God which some might think of it not so bad, then you are very mistaken.

Hitler was not a Christian. He might have said he was, but we all know his actions were proven otherwise therefore he is not in heaven. I even think he was a preview of the upcoming anti-Christ.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 19, 2019, 11:55:08 AM
I want to go back to this:
Yes because salvation for a Christian is not based upon actions.
This has been mentioned more than once and I want to understand what you are saying.  I think you mean "not based *just* upon actions".

James 2:17,24,26

- So also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.
- You see that a person is justified by works and not by faith alone.
- For as the body apart from the spirit is dead, so also faith apart from works is dead.


Faith is a proof before God that you are a genuine believer.
Work/action is a proof before men that you are a genuine believer.
Those two do come together.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 24, 2019, 11:26:40 AM
Since about half of you guys voted you guys are Christians and sounds like many people do believe in God in TI, what are you guys' thoughts on getting rich?

Do we need to strive to become rich? Do we need to get financially well situated? If so, what about Jesus' warning on the rich? According to Jesus, a camel to go through the eye of a needle is easier than for a rich to enter into heaven. I would say the most Irvine people with MAXROI homes are considered pretty rich in any perspective.

What are you guys' thoughts? I have what I believe in this matter as of now, but interested to see what others think which might change my view also.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: AW on June 24, 2019, 12:14:18 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 24, 2019, 01:51:11 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on June 24, 2019, 02:18:18 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Wise with money to further the kingdom of God...not to make more money.  You need to store riches in Heaven...not in this world.  Money can also mean talents, one needs to maximize one's talent to further the kingdom of God.

If one is a Christian, he or she knows that earthly wealth is fleeting.  Job was one of the richest people on Earth for his time (also Solomon) and has his riches taken away in an instant and seemingly without cause. 

There is nothing wrong with being rich...it's whether one makes money one's god. 
Title: Re: God?
Post by: AW on June 24, 2019, 03:05:34 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.


I don’t think the main point is to strive to become rich (can’t serve 2 masters, can’t serve both God and money), money is a tool to be used and should not be the main goal of life, it’s more like, are people good stewards (Luke 16:11, "If you have not been trustworthy in handling worldly wealth, who will trust you with the true riches of eternity!")
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kings on June 24, 2019, 03:15:50 PM
step 1. work hard and make money
step 2. invest and be smart with money
step 3. become a rich sinner - money is god
step 4. repent
step 5. still rich but now god is your master

heaven or no heaven?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 24, 2019, 03:20:15 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on June 24, 2019, 03:22:11 PM
step 1. work hard and make money
step 2. invest and be smart with money
step 3. become a rich sinner - money is god
step 4. repent
step 5. still rich but now god is your master

heaven or no heaven?

You seem to confuse actions with salvation.  Salvation is independent of actions...if God was truly your master, the answer to your question would be easy and evidence.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 24, 2019, 03:35:36 PM
step 1. work hard and make money
step 2. invest and be smart with money
step 3. become a rich sinner - money is god
step 4. repent
step 5. still rich but now god is your master

heaven or no heaven?

If you truly repent at step 4, then most likely you have got rid of your wealth because repenting means you let go of your old god. Zacchaeus in the Bible would be one of examples. So at step 5, you might be poor but Jesus is your master thus you go to heaven. As always, there are exceptions so I can't say there never can be a case of your step 5, but repenting isn't just saying sorry and keeping it up at your old self.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kings on June 24, 2019, 04:00:04 PM
step 1. work hard and make money
step 2. invest and be smart with money
step 3. become a rich sinner - money is god
step 4. repent
step 5. still rich but now god is your master

heaven or no heaven?

If you truly repent at step 4, then most likely you have got rid of your wealth because repenting means you let go of your old god. Zacchaeus in the Bible would be one of examples. So at step 5, you might be poor but Jesus is your master thus you go to heaven. As always, there are exceptions so I can't say there never can be a case of your step 5, but repenting isn't just saying sorry and keeping it up at your old self.

i've grossly simplified step 4, but i would assume there must be some middle ground between rich and poor, how much wealth is given away, to whom, etc.

separately, but on the topic of money - can one donate to and support other religions monetarily while still having a relationship with the jesus?  is $5 a month to the local mosque the same as $5 billion a month?  would god look down upon you if you gave up all your wealth (let's say billions of dollars, which would have a significant effect) to the furtherance of other religions?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 24, 2019, 04:09:08 PM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 24, 2019, 04:23:15 PM
step 1. work hard and make money
step 2. invest and be smart with money
step 3. become a rich sinner - money is god
step 4. repent
step 5. still rich but now god is your master

heaven or no heaven?

If you truly repent at step 4, then most likely you have got rid of your wealth because repenting means you let go of your old god. Zacchaeus in the Bible would be one of examples. So at step 5, you might be poor but Jesus is your master thus you go to heaven. As always, there are exceptions so I can't say there never can be a case of your step 5, but repenting isn't just saying sorry and keeping it up at your old self.

i've grossly simplified step 4, but i would assume there must be some middle ground between rich and poor, how much wealth is given away, to whom, etc.

separately, but on the topic of money - can one donate to and support other religions monetarily while still having a relationship with the jesus?  is $5 a month to the local mosque the same as $5 billion a month?  would god look down upon you if you gave up all your wealth (let's say billions of dollars, which would have a significant effect) to the furtherance of other religions?

Well, it all depends on the motivation of that donation. If that donation is simply because they were in need or in hunger, then God would actually praise that no matter what religion, nation, or whatsoever. If that donation is because you get to tax deduct or secretly for your own benefits, then God won't like it even if you were to donate $5 billion to a Christian church.

For your step 4 scenario, how much should be given up is actually described in Leviticus 6:5 and Numbers 5:6-7 about the penalty of defraud money, which Zacchaeus told Jesus he would. But the main thing, I say, would be your heart. If your heart desires to give up certain amount of money after repenting, then you should pray earnestly and follow in action IMHO.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on June 24, 2019, 04:27:11 PM
Money is not evil -- LOVE of money is root of all evil.

Its just not about being wealthy.  It's about how being wealthy (or your journey to being wealthy) changed you --    Are you closer to God now compared to before ?  Do you exhibit the fruit of the spirits now more than before you were wealthy ?  Are you a better Christian now ?

If you are blessed by God to have more wealth, it also means you were given more responsibility to use that wealth to help further his kingdom and you will be accountable for that when you face God in the end times (same goes for talent, wisdom etc that were given to you).
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on June 24, 2019, 04:34:35 PM
What do you guys think about this article? His life was demanded of him at 40 Years old. I don't know about you guys, but everyday when I wake up at 5AM, I the first thing that is going to come out of my mouth is "Thank you Lord for giving me another day to live."

Millionaire Doctor Dying From Cancer Warns That Money, Nice Things Bring ‘No Joy’ in the End.

This medical doctor passed away at a young age of 40. He shares his reflections about his life. Very powerful testimony.

https://nextshark.com/richard-teo-singaporean-physician/?fbclid=IwAR2W2GiuA3KbxS21ATIbuwQIWbmZar5BCvRZ8lX9SPsP90FtUkQne5ybwR4

Men, it doesn't matter if you've had a great start in the Christian Life. It doesn't matter if you've stumbled time and time again - or even fallen flat on your face. What matters most is how you finish.

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."

John 3:16
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Happiness on June 24, 2019, 05:00:25 PM
If you take the NT literally, don't be a FOREX trader.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 25, 2019, 07:51:04 AM
Thanks Mety for keeping this thread active.

To answer your question, I do believe "rich" is a relative term. And like others have said, it's your motivation that is the difference.

I would like to be "rich" so that my family can have the things they need... and want... but at the same time, it makes it easier for us to serve and share God. We can donate more time, talent and money to our church, we can help others in need, etc etc.

What's interesting to me, is for those who get to a point where they consider themselves "rich" (or financially successful), I would think they would naturally turn to God to seek something beyond worldly possessions. For me personally, while I would not consider myself rich, I am at a point where I want to help others with their lives and finding God rather than continuing to increase my net worth. I am at this point because of God and I would like others to see that having Him in their life helps you worry less about the struggle and that building these relationships with God and others is a "richness" worth striving for.

That doesn't necessarily mean talking about God every chance I get (although we should try), but helping people out, being positive, showing them a contentment with your life that makes them curious about that peace you have with yourself. Obviously, I'm human, and I fail many times at doing this (especially on TI when I get snarky), but I continue as best I can and try to be helpful based on my experience even though I am by no means an expert on real estate, economy, technology or whatever we talk about here.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 08:54:06 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless even if it’s not popular? (My self, belly, and maybe another person) It all comes down to the core principles. Some or a lot of people might not agree, but there’s nothing we can do. But at the end of the day, I can say I tried to help another fellow human being. Can they? Also, I have done things to help other people.

All I have to say regarding ROI. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 10:04:30 AM
Thanks Mety for keeping this thread active.

To answer your question, I do believe "rich" is a relative term. And like others have said, it's your motivation that is the difference.

I would like to be "rich" so that my family can have the things they need... and want... but at the same time, it makes it easier for us to serve and share God. We can donate more time, talent and money to our church, we can help others in need, etc etc.

What's interesting to me, is for those who get to a point where they consider themselves "rich" (or financially successful), I would think they would naturally turn to God to seek something beyond worldly possessions. For me personally, while I would not consider myself rich, I am at a point where I want to help others with their lives and finding God rather than continuing to increase my net worth. I am at this point because of God and I would like others to see that having Him in their life helps you worry less about the struggle and that building these relationships with God and others is a "richness" worth striving for.

That doesn't necessarily mean talking about God every chance I get (although we should try), but helping people out, being positive, showing them a contentment with your life that makes them curious about that peace you have with yourself. Obviously, I'm human, and I fail many times at doing this (especially on TI when I get snarky), but I continue as best I can and try to be helpful based on my experience even though I am by no means an expert on real estate, economy, technology or whatever we talk about here.

I probably am doing the same thing as you stated mostly in order to walk in faith. However, do we really need to be "rich" to feed our family? Does it really make it easier to serve others when you are "more rich?" Jesus probably had less money than any of us and He still had no problem serving God the Father and others. Okay, He is the Son of God so you might say His case was a little different. Then how about all the Apostles and first believers in Jerusalem? I'm not against money. I think the problem is when you have "love of money" as GH said and also as Jesus said. Wanting to be rich in order to feed family or to serve others doesn't sound like loving money, but isn't this kind of saying we see money as more priority than God in order to share the good news? Isn't that in a way saying we think more money would work more effectively than just straight up sharing Christ?

This is my inner struggle also. That's why I keep asking you guys, but I believe Jesus was commanding us to have priority the other way. I think Jesus was telling us to get to know God more rather than get to know how to make more money even if it means to serve others because once you know God more and more you will most likely share the good news naturally and God will take care of those needs you have. Thoughts?


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 10:18:05 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless? (My self, belly, and maybe another person)

All I have to say. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)

Thanks for your answer. What part exactly are you disagreeing with?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 10:19:06 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless? (My self, belly, and maybe another person)

All I have to say. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)

Thanks for your answer. What part exactly are you disagreeing with?

Read my updated posts. Thanks
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 10:47:38 AM
I know this may be controversial.
You can greet your neighbor in church and shake their hand. How about be cordial to people in real life?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 10:47:58 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless even if it’s not popular? (My self, belly, and maybe another person) It all comes down to the core principles. Some or a lot of people might not agree, but there’s nothing we can do. But at the end of the day, I can say I tried to help another fellow human being. Can they?

All I have to say regarding ROI. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)

Living an honest life is great, but sin is a different category. Everyone is under sin. Proof? Everyone is drying as we get older. Death is the result of sin or a sinful life as that's what God promised sin would do to us from the book of Genesis. If anyone is not dying and living forever, only that person is not under sin. (hint. there is Someone like that already)

Your support for homeless people or the shelter in Irvine was one of very few. Belly probably was more enthusiastic because of his hatred toward GP in a political sense, but I'm not him so I can't fully speak for his motivation. As I mentioned earlier to king's reply, helping others is good as long as the motivation is good and pure before God. I could say I donated $5 billion to a homeless shelter or a church but still have a prideful heart wanting to show off and get all other benefits and praise from other people. Then that's not really a good faithful action in God's eyes but a lie and a deceitful corruption. But since only God knows one's heart, we can't really fully know yet of anyone's motivations or intentions. For example, no one knew Judas Iscariot would betray Jesus until the very moment he actually did. No one knew he was a fake believer though Jesus knew from the beginning.

Making ROI is fine. Being smart with God's given talent and money is a good way to present good stewardship. But if we think we must make more ROI and money to expand God's Kingdom, then that's where I'm having a question since God never commanded in The Holy Bible for us to get rich in order to do His work. God rather tells us to trust in Him more than worldly riches and He will do take care of our needs.

I'm not sure who was being jealous, but again this is the heart issue where we can't fully know of others.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on June 25, 2019, 10:52:32 AM
I heard from some message before that one of the greatest tool Satan use is to try to make us compare ourselves to others to distract us from our true calling in following Him based on the gift He has given us.   Comparing with others either make us deficient (because some may be seemingly more closer to God than us) or make us proud and complacent (when some are weaker in faith than us) --   

So there is really no point of discussing the merit of the rich donating a lot of money and guessing their intent because only God knows their true heart.  If you see a brother/sister in Christ (that you know well) that is sliding in faith because of his/her pursue of wealth, gently remind him/her out of brotherly love.  But I think to compare yourself to some random folks that you barely know their circumstances and their calling and what they do with their wealth is just not the right direction to do.

There was a story somewhere in John 21, where Peter asked Jesus "what about Him"? and Jesus reply was in the line of if I want him alive until I return, what is that to you -- just follow me --- 





Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 10:53:14 AM
@Mety

What do you think is a better option. A person makes money legally or illegally. (Only two choices)

I guess a third option is to live off the government or bum off relatives.

The Bible or someone from the church would most likely agree with legally.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 10:55:26 AM
I know this may be controversial.
You can greet your neighbor in church and shake their hand. How about be cordial to people in real life?

This is a very good point I actually want to speak of.
I see many problems with Christians that they are acting so nice and "holy" in church and to church people, but then they are exactly the opposite at home and in a non-church environment. I believe this is one of the biggest reasons that children saw their parents such hypocriticism and not wanting to go to church these days. Of course, their fake actions do not represent God at all, but it sure does become hinderance.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 11:02:41 AM
I heard from some message before that one of the greatest tool Satan use is to try to make us compare ourselves to others to distract us from our true calling in following Him based on the gift He has given us.   Comparing with others either make us deficient (because some may be seemingly more closer to God than us) or make us proud and complacent (when some are weaker in faith than us) --   

So there is really no point of discussing the merit of the rich donating a lot of money and guessing their intent because only God knows their true heart.  If you see a brother/sister in Christ (that you know well) that is sliding in faith because of his/her pursue of wealth, gently remind him/her out of brotherly love.  But I think to compare yourself to some random folks that you barely know their circumstances and their calling and what they do with their wealth is just not the right direction to do.

There was a story somewhere in John 21, where Peter asked Jesus "what about Him"? and Jesus reply was in the line of if I want him alive until I return, what is that to you -- just follow me ---

I agree. We don't need to bash on some random people of what they do with their money. I didn't mean to do that. I was only rendering examples to drive the point of my question.

I wanted to ask.. what is the right way to manage our wealth as a Christian? Because in order to make ROI or profit, you sure need to spend much time thinking and giving your heart into. Would God rather want us to spend our time getting to know Him and think/talk/share of Him in those times instead?

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 11:13:00 AM
@Mety

What do you think is a better option. A person makes money legally or illegally. (Only two choices)

I guess a third option is to live off the government or bum off relatives.

The Bible or someone from the church would most likely agree with legally.

Of course the best option would be making money legally. Although there could be many ways of making legal money ending up as a corruption in this world before God's eyes. Just because I've made money legally, it doesn't mean I'm more righteous or better than those who made illegally or someone living off the government.

What matters would be how much "heart" are we putting into in terms of making money?

Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 11:18:28 AM
@Mety

No offense. Let me try to help you out. I think you are trying to talk about greed. (Like loving money)
There are many versus that talks not to be greedy.

Is this what are you trying to say?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 11:38:07 AM
@Mety

No offense. Let me try to help you out. I think you are trying to talk about greed. (Like loving money)
There are many versus that talks not to be greedy.

Is this what are you trying to say?

I want to know what you, as a Christian, would think about money. You can still participate in the discussion even if you're not Christian, but I wanted to hear how other believers are handling this issue. Believe or not it really does come down to serve one or the other of these two - God or money. You might disagree, but if you really really think deeply inside your heart, you end up either wanting to serve God or wanting to serve to have more money. You can't serve both. Greed is a part of that system of loving money, but it's not the only way.

The reason, I think, of wanting to serve money is because of one reason - you don't want to serve God. I might sound like I've overly simplified, but again, if you really really honestly deeply think of your heart, you can see yourself loving money more than God especially living in this modern age.

I'm not saying I'm perfectly handling this issue no problem. I think about MAXROI too. I think about feeding our family with money also. But deep inside my heart, I know it's not really right to have too much of this concerns or worries in my heart. I even think I shouldn't have this worry at all. If I truly believe God will take care of my family and I, I only need to work hard and try to live an honest life. And instead of worrying about money, I should rather read His words, praise of His love, and share of His goodness with others as we fellowship. What comforts me is that I know God will take care of us no matter what and I only need to remain in His love. But as we all fail time to time, I wanted to hear how others are thinking of this matter.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 11:46:18 AM
I think you are stretching it.
However, if a person says they only care about money. I think you have a valid argument.

Use my example selling Tuna or sustainable fish. Is the person who sells Tuna considered a bad person? Would you say that person committed a crime?
I believe most people would say no to both. (Don’t consider the fishing laws. I know some smart person might bring that up. Lol)

At the end that person selling Tuna most likely would have more money.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 12:22:56 PM
Maybe I am stretching it. It's either an area no one really thinks about or doesn't want to talk about. But most people reacted the same way when God's prophets talked about warning against people's sin in Israel and when Jesus was teaching people, commanding them to repent. I'm not saying God sent me to prophesy or anything like that, but most people who call themselves Christian who love money more than God might not want to admit so.

Anyways, if you are passionate about catching tuna and selling it, then I don't see a problem. If you are super eco friendly and want to sell only sustainable fish, then that's your calling also. I don't know much about fishing laws so I could be very wrong on this issue, but I think the topic where I want to stay is are you really loving God more than money? Simply put, do you think about God more than money?

Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 01:08:44 PM
You are stretching it. Also, your statements are going in circles. (circular)

Btw- you are not a prophet. (You said your not, but I would to express my opinion you are far from one.)

The fisherman is an example of an occupation of how they make money and it depends on the variety of fish they catch.

I think people are intimidated about money and then blame people if they are not.

A person should take ownership and responsibility and stop blaming society. You can pursue your education, read books or articles about it, asks your friends, or simply hire someone.

So do you play the lottery? That’s a form of gambling.

Maybe I am stretching it. It's either an area no one really thinks about or doesn't want to talk about. But most people reacted the same way when God's prophets talked about warning against people's sin in Israel and when Jesus was teaching people, commanding them to repent. I'm not saying God sent me to prophesy or anything like that, but most people who call themselves Christian who love money more than God might not want to admit so.

Anyways, if you are passionate about catching tuna and selling it, then I don't see a problem. If you are super eco friendly and want to sell only sustainable fish, then that's your calling also. I don't know much about fishing laws so I could be very wrong on this issue, but I think the topic where I want to stay is are you really loving God more than money? Simply put, do you think about God more than money?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 01:49:21 PM
You are stretching it. Also, your statements are going in circles. (circular)

Btw- you are not a prophet. (You said your not, but I would to express my opinion you are far from one.)

The fisherman is an example of an occupation of how they make money and it depends on the variety of fish they catch.

I think people are intimidated about money and then blame people if they are not.

A person should take ownership and responsibility and stop blaming society. You can pursue your education, read books or articles about it, asks your friends, or simply hire someone.

So do you play the lottery? That’s a form of gambling.

Maybe I am stretching it. It's either an area no one really thinks about or doesn't want to talk about. But most people reacted the same way when God's prophets talked about warning against people's sin in Israel and when Jesus was teaching people, commanding them to repent. I'm not saying God sent me to prophesy or anything like that, but most people who call themselves Christian who love money more than God might not want to admit so.

Anyways, if you are passionate about catching tuna and selling it, then I don't see a problem. If you are super eco friendly and want to sell only sustainable fish, then that's your calling also. I don't know much about fishing laws so I could be very wrong on this issue, but I think the topic where I want to stay is are you really loving God more than money? Simply put, do you think about God more than money?

So you think it's completely fine for a Christian to think about making money more than God?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 25, 2019, 01:57:10 PM
You are stretching it. Also, your statements are going in circles. (circular)

Btw- you are not a prophet. (You said your not, but I would to express my opinion you are far from one.)

The fisherman is an example of an occupation of how they make money and it depends on the variety of fish they catch.

I think people are intimidated about money and then blame people if they are not.

A person should take ownership and responsibility and stop blaming society. You can pursue your education, read books or articles about it, asks your friends, or simply hire someone.

So do you play the lottery? That’s a form of gambling.

Maybe I am stretching it. It's either an area no one really thinks about or doesn't want to talk about. But most people reacted the same way when God's prophets talked about warning against people's sin in Israel and when Jesus was teaching people, commanding them to repent. I'm not saying God sent me to prophesy or anything like that, but most people who call themselves Christian who love money more than God might not want to admit so.

Anyways, if you are passionate about catching tuna and selling it, then I don't see a problem. If you are super eco friendly and want to sell only sustainable fish, then that's your calling also. I don't know much about fishing laws so I could be very wrong on this issue, but I think the topic where I want to stay is are you really loving God more than money? Simply put, do you think about God more than money?

So you think it's completely fine for a Christian to think about making money more than God?

My previous statements:

1. No offense. Let me try to help you out. I think you are trying to talk about greed. (Like loving money)
There are many versus that talks not to be greedy.

2. However, if a person says they only care about money. I think you have a valid argument.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 02:11:29 PM
You are stretching it. Also, your statements are going in circles. (circular)

Btw- you are not a prophet. (You said your not, but I would to express my opinion you are far from one.)

The fisherman is an example of an occupation of how they make money and it depends on the variety of fish they catch.

I think people are intimidated about money and then blame people if they are not.

A person should take ownership and responsibility and stop blaming society. You can pursue your education, read books or articles about it, asks your friends, or simply hire someone.

So do you play the lottery? That’s a form of gambling.

Maybe I am stretching it. It's either an area no one really thinks about or doesn't want to talk about. But most people reacted the same way when God's prophets talked about warning against people's sin in Israel and when Jesus was teaching people, commanding them to repent. I'm not saying God sent me to prophesy or anything like that, but most people who call themselves Christian who love money more than God might not want to admit so.

Anyways, if you are passionate about catching tuna and selling it, then I don't see a problem. If you are super eco friendly and want to sell only sustainable fish, then that's your calling also. I don't know much about fishing laws so I could be very wrong on this issue, but I think the topic where I want to stay is are you really loving God more than money? Simply put, do you think about God more than money?

So you think it's completely fine for a Christian to think about making money more than God?

My previous statements:

1. No offense. Let me try to help you out. I think you are trying to talk about greed. (Like loving money)
There are many versus that talks not to be greedy.

2. However, if a person says they only care about money. I think you have a valid argument.

Alright. I guess you made your point.
I also responded to you that greed is a part of the system where you choose to love money more than God. You think that's stretching, but please explain how that is stretching? Remember, I'm not trying to blame anyone or any rich people. The point was to see the motivation and your heart of how you use money which no one can know except God alone (and you, if you're real honest to yourself).
My statements do go in circles since I'm still talking about the same thing over and over but within different areas of our lives.

Added - no,  I don't do lottery nor gambling. lol
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 25, 2019, 03:33:11 PM
Thanks Mety for keeping this thread active.

To answer your question, I do believe "rich" is a relative term. And like others have said, it's your motivation that is the difference.

I would like to be "rich" so that my family can have the things they need... and want... but at the same time, it makes it easier for us to serve and share God. We can donate more time, talent and money to our church, we can help others in need, etc etc.

What's interesting to me, is for those who get to a point where they consider themselves "rich" (or financially successful), I would think they would naturally turn to God to seek something beyond worldly possessions. For me personally, while I would not consider myself rich, I am at a point where I want to help others with their lives and finding God rather than continuing to increase my net worth. I am at this point because of God and I would like others to see that having Him in their life helps you worry less about the struggle and that building these relationships with God and others is a "richness" worth striving for.

That doesn't necessarily mean talking about God every chance I get (although we should try), but helping people out, being positive, showing them a contentment with your life that makes them curious about that peace you have with yourself. Obviously, I'm human, and I fail many times at doing this (especially on TI when I get snarky), but I continue as best I can and try to be helpful based on my experience even though I am by no means an expert on real estate, economy, technology or whatever we talk about here.

I probably am doing the same thing as you stated mostly in order to walk in faith. However, do we really need to be "rich" to feed our family? Does it really make it easier to serve others when you are "more rich?" Jesus probably had less money than any of us and He still had no problem serving God the Father and others. Okay, He is the Son of God so you might say His case was a little different. Then how about all the Apostles and first believers in Jerusalem? I'm not against money. I think the problem is when you have "love of money" as GH said and also as Jesus said. Wanting to be rich in order to feed family or to serve others doesn't sound like loving money, but isn't this kind of saying we see money as more priority than God in order to share the good news? Isn't that in a way saying we think more money would work more effectively than just straight up sharing Christ?

This is my inner struggle also. That's why I keep asking you guys, but I believe Jesus was commanding us to have priority the other way. I think Jesus was telling us to get to know God more rather than get to know how to make more money even if it means to serve others because once you know God more and more you will most likely share the good news naturally and God will take care of those needs you have. Thoughts?

This goes back to your comment that singing isn't really worshipping God.

That’s why I said “rich” is relative. My definition is being able to provide for my family or making enough so my wife doesn’t have to work.

To me, making money is loving my family. Loving God is using my talents to make that money. I choose to make less because I want to spend more time taking care of my kids. There are so many variables it’s hard to say just let God take care of it. How do you know that God doesn’t want you to make money?

And yes, having money can make you a better disciple because you don’t have to worry about the needs of your family and have the time/resources to devote to others. Sure, you can and should disciple no matter your station but modern day America is different than Israel over 2000 years ago.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 25, 2019, 04:32:53 PM
Thanks Mety for keeping this thread active.

To answer your question, I do believe "rich" is a relative term. And like others have said, it's your motivation that is the difference.

I would like to be "rich" so that my family can have the things they need... and want... but at the same time, it makes it easier for us to serve and share God. We can donate more time, talent and money to our church, we can help others in need, etc etc.

What's interesting to me, is for those who get to a point where they consider themselves "rich" (or financially successful), I would think they would naturally turn to God to seek something beyond worldly possessions. For me personally, while I would not consider myself rich, I am at a point where I want to help others with their lives and finding God rather than continuing to increase my net worth. I am at this point because of God and I would like others to see that having Him in their life helps you worry less about the struggle and that building these relationships with God and others is a "richness" worth striving for.

That doesn't necessarily mean talking about God every chance I get (although we should try), but helping people out, being positive, showing them a contentment with your life that makes them curious about that peace you have with yourself. Obviously, I'm human, and I fail many times at doing this (especially on TI when I get snarky), but I continue as best I can and try to be helpful based on my experience even though I am by no means an expert on real estate, economy, technology or whatever we talk about here.

I probably am doing the same thing as you stated mostly in order to walk in faith. However, do we really need to be "rich" to feed our family? Does it really make it easier to serve others when you are "more rich?" Jesus probably had less money than any of us and He still had no problem serving God the Father and others. Okay, He is the Son of God so you might say His case was a little different. Then how about all the Apostles and first believers in Jerusalem? I'm not against money. I think the problem is when you have "love of money" as GH said and also as Jesus said. Wanting to be rich in order to feed family or to serve others doesn't sound like loving money, but isn't this kind of saying we see money as more priority than God in order to share the good news? Isn't that in a way saying we think more money would work more effectively than just straight up sharing Christ?

This is my inner struggle also. That's why I keep asking you guys, but I believe Jesus was commanding us to have priority the other way. I think Jesus was telling us to get to know God more rather than get to know how to make more money even if it means to serve others because once you know God more and more you will most likely share the good news naturally and God will take care of those needs you have. Thoughts?

This goes back to your comment that singing isn't really worshipping God.

That’s why I said “rich” is relative. My definition is being able to provide for my family or making enough so my wife doesn’t have to work.

To me, making money is loving my family. Loving God is using my talents to make that money. I choose to make less because I want to spend more time taking care of my kids. There are so many variables it’s hard to say just let God take care of it. How do you know that God doesn’t want you to make money?

And yes, having money can make you a better disciple because you don’t have to worry about the needs of your family and have the time/resources to devote to others. Sure, you can and should disciple no matter your station but modern day America is different than Israel over 2000 years ago.

Singing can be a part of worship to God if that wasn't still clear.

Yeah, I guess you're right. We do have responsibility to take care of our family so making money is also responding in a right way to God's calling.

Although we are living about 2000 years after Jesus taught in Israel, I believe the principal stays the same no matter where or when. So in that sense, we are not to worry about what to wear, what to drink, or what to eat as those are pretty much what we do with money. God knows we need those things, so we should rather seek His Kingdom first as He will provide what we need anyways. Isn't that what faith is? What is seeking His Kingdom? I believe that is to know God more. How to know God more? Through reading His words sharing them. If we really read and love His words, we will naturally make money to take care of our family also as those are what His words tell us to do so. Thus knowing Him more correctly would make us a better disciple rather than having more money. Money could help, but that's not the most necessary thing to become an effective disciple IMHO. If we have enough money, I guess the best way to spend it to spend on people who need them. But even if we don't have enough to do so, I believe God can still provide one's needs.

I'm starting to realize as I write these posts. I wasn't really saying don't make money. I was originally trying to say "Are we spending MORE time on thinking about how to make MORE money and fulfilling financial or material needs than at least having any interests in God?" I call myself a Christian, but I often find myself doing that so I'm praying and repenting of that sin. I also wanted to see if any other Christians find themselves doing that. Or how if any, they managed to get out of that trap. I hope it all makes sense.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 25, 2019, 06:53:15 PM
Like the singing/worship, to me it’s the same.

Back in the OT, making money was farming, raising livestock, etc, and God never said not to do that. He encouraged it so we can offer it to Him, the same way today we offer the money we make to churches or others in need.

Again, it’s a human trait we all fail at but I don’t know if i would classify it as a sin. Like you said, love of money is different than wanting to make more money to help your family.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 26, 2019, 12:03:22 PM
So what is love of money then? How do you define it?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on June 26, 2019, 12:10:10 PM
First Timothy 6:10 does not say that money is the root of all evil. It says, "For love of money is root of all kinds of evil" It is not about the money, it's about our attitude. God doesn't like it when we worship anything other than him. He's a jealous God, and if our love of money (or family, or career, or hobbies, or 3CWG in Irvine... you fill in the blank gets in the way of our relationship with him, then we have a problem. He doesn't like that.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 26, 2019, 01:44:25 PM
So what is love of money then? How do you define it?

As Panda said, when you put it above God.

And yes, at times I think all of us do... I see so many pastors who use very expensive MacBooks, why? A cheap Chromebook would work for what they do, it's not like they are graphic artists.

But humans want nice things, and I believe God wants us to have nice things, just as long as that's not the only thing we want.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 26, 2019, 02:13:53 PM
Sorry for getting too technical, but how do we know if something is getting in the way of our relationship with God?  How do we know if it's being put above God? Is it by thinking of it more than God? Is it by spending more time on it? Is it different for everyone? Can anyone share your own?

IHO says we want nice things and it's ok as long as that's not the only thing we want, but isn't that what Israel was pretty much doing as they served both God and other gods also? God called them out and said of them as an adulterous wife. The Bible I read seems to be saying God wants our whole attention, not divided heart. And it seems to be that money, which tempts us that we can get anything we want, is the very thing that our heart could be led divided mostly.

Am I still stretching? If you think so, please explain instead of just calling it out.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: GH on June 26, 2019, 02:30:35 PM
Sorry for getting too technical, but how do we know if something is getting in the way of our relationship with God?  How do we know if it's being put above God? Is it by thinking of it more than God? Is it by spending more time on it? Is it different for everyone? Can anyone share your own?

IHO says we want nice things and it's ok as long as that's not the only thing we want, but isn't that what Israel was pretty much doing as they served both God and other gods also? God called them out and said of them as an adulterous wife. The Bible I read seems to be saying God wants our whole attention, not divided heart. And it seems to be that money, which tempts us that we can get anything we want, is the very thing that our heart could be led divided mostly.

Am I still stretching? If you think so, please explain instead of just calling it out.

My thought on this is where the Holy Spirit comes in --- He will guide and give you discernment to know the answer.  The closer you are to God, the more you know God (through His word, through fellowship based on other brother's experience etc), the clearer the answer will be -- 

An analogy (i remembered from some message before -- probably a bad one but will throw out nevertheless) -- It's like your relationship to your earthly father -- If you are very close to your father and really know him inside out, you can probably easily discern if he approves or not on what you are doing without a word from him (or maybe from just little hint or reaction or even none at all).   But if you not very close -- it will be very hard to discern his opinion or reactions even if its staring right in your face --- I guess this is the same thing with our heavenly father -- the closer you are to Him, the more you will know the answer to your question

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on June 26, 2019, 04:08:04 PM
Really like the direction of this thread guys! Lots of great comments. GH, I agree and like your post above. Mety… I told you this before and I will am going to say this again.. God has gifted you as an evangelist. I am not sure if there is such a term, but you are like a digital evangelist. Poll shows 38.2% Christians in the house... Mety… continue to do what you are doing and light this place up and we will follow your lead :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 26, 2019, 05:21:15 PM
I wouldn't call it a divided heart.

Your desire for money should be fundamentally different from your love for God, if they are not, that is when it becomes a problem.

Do you love your wife the same as you love your favorite food? Do you consider your heart divided between your spouse and your car?

Like GH said, the Holy Spirit will let you know. And I do like the father analogy... but that can also be applied to any relationship.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 10:50:03 AM
Sorry for getting too technical, but how do we know if something is getting in the way of our relationship with God?  How do we know if it's being put above God? Is it by thinking of it more than God? Is it by spending more time on it? Is it different for everyone? Can anyone share your own?

IHO says we want nice things and it's ok as long as that's not the only thing we want, but isn't that what Israel was pretty much doing as they served both God and other gods also? God called them out and said of them as an adulterous wife. The Bible I read seems to be saying God wants our whole attention, not divided heart. And it seems to be that money, which tempts us that we can get anything we want, is the very thing that our heart could be led divided mostly.

Am I still stretching? If you think so, please explain instead of just calling it out.

My thought on this is where the Holy Spirit comes in --- He will guide and give you discernment to know the answer.  The closer you are to God, the more you know God (through His word, through fellowship based on other brother's experience etc), the clearer the answer will be -- 

An analogy (i remembered from some message before -- probably a bad one but will throw out nevertheless) -- It's like your relationship to your earthly father -- If you are very close to your father and really know him inside out, you can probably easily discern if he approves or not on what you are doing without a word from him (or maybe from just little hint or reaction or even none at all).   But if you not very close -- it will be very hard to discern his opinion or reactions even if its staring right in your face --- I guess this is the same thing with our heavenly father -- the closer you are to Him, the more you will know the answer to your question

Thanks for your opinion.
You're saying as you get closer to God, you would know more/better how to handle with God's given money. I agree since money itself is also something God gave you or He allowed for you to have. But without being close to God, it's more likely that we would tend to love money more than God. So I guess the first step before anything is that we need to get close to God. God's word and fellowship with other believers, like you said, are good starting ways to get closer to God in my opinion also. Then, also like you said, The Holy Spirit who dwells in believers would guide us to handle rightly with God's given money. I guess this could be a lifelong process or journey with God until we meet Him.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 11:30:29 AM
Really like the direction of this thread guys! Lots of great comments. GH, I agree and like your post above. Mety… I told you this before and I will am going to say this again.. God has gifted you as an evangelist. I am not sure if there is such a term, but you are like a digital evangelist. Poll shows 38.2% Christians in the house... Mety… continue to do what you are doing and light this place up and we will follow your lead :)

Thanks Panda. I believe every believer is gifted with preaching the gospel in some sort of ways. Some might do well in podiums, some might do well in books, and some might do well in internet forums like this. I'm not sure if I'm doing a good job, but as someone who's received God's grace, I must keep continue to talk about Jesus and His love.

I find money many times get in a way for me and others to have relationship with God. And that is definitely hindering His love in my life and others as I encounter with other believers who are struggling with dominated thoughts about money. And they don't seem to have wrong reasons. They're trying to get rid of debt or tying to buy wife and kids good stuff. So they don't really seem bad, but I can see some kind of anxiety or worries we all have about these financial matters. We might not directly love money, but everything we do sort of ends up with dealing with money for my/our own benefits rather than other's.

I believe we, as living in a sinful human nature, cannot do this job of not loving money on our own. We keep failing and failing. I think that's what Jesus was speaking about as He was teaching the impossibility of rich entering heaven. As most of His teachings were pretty much telling us we can't live a holy life and be saved on our own, He kept telling His disciples and others to come to Him, the Way. How do we come to Him? As GH said, we can come and get closer to God by the work of The Holy Spirit as The Spirit guides us to live more and more like Jesus Christ. In the Name of Jesus, this access is fully granted for those who genuinely believe and admit one's sinful nature. That's where we repent. That's where we turn from going wrong. That's where to re-direct our lives. We might fail again, but the beauty is that God keeps forgiving us as long as we admit. I think as we mature spiritually, we wouldn't live a life of loving money as much as before, but I wanted to hear if any believers here had some practical things they do or exercise to not love money as much.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 11:42:14 AM
I wouldn't call it a divided heart.

Your desire for money should be fundamentally different from your love for God, if they are not, that is when it becomes a problem.

Do you love your wife the same as you love your favorite food? Do you consider your heart divided between your spouse and your car?

Like GH said, the Holy Spirit will let you know. And I do like the father analogy... but that can also be applied to any relationship.

Maybe you're good at dealing with God's money and don't feel like having a divided heart.

Of course I love my wife more than any person, favorite food or cars, but I'll be honest. I did have a thought of craving my favorite food more than wanting to see my wife. Again, maybe you're not as bad as me and perfectly love your family and God, but I fail time to time. And I need to repent and re-direct my thoughts as The Holy Spirit guides me especially through His words, The Bible.

You've mentioned before that it’s a human trait we all fail, but it doesn't make it okay to just bypass and not deal with it. We don't need to point out someone's wrong and try to deal with that. We should start with our own issues. I see these little things as sins and I need to deal with them before they pile up and dominate my thoughts. Satan can get very smart to do his work subtly.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 27, 2019, 12:12:25 PM
I'm not sure where I said "bypass and not deal with it".

What I did say is to recognize our shortfalls and try to do better but not get down on ourselves whenever we fail.

My mantra is always look for the positive (just how I hope that Muslims and Jews may also get into heaven).
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 01:02:01 PM
I'm not sure where I said "bypass and not deal with it".

What I did say is to recognize our shortfalls and try to do better but not get down on ourselves whenever we fail.

My mantra is always look for the positive (just how I hope that Muslims and Jews may also get into heaven).

Staying positive is good. I was just saying things we overlook might pile up and change our behavior and even attack our faith eventually. I'm not saying you said it's okay to overlook. I'm not trying to put you on a trap out of your own words or anything so please don't take it that way.

Muslim, Jew, Buddhist, or whatever, the only way to heaven is by believing in Jesus, the Son of God. Believing in Jesus means you repent of your sin and have Jesus as your master. And Jesus said you can't have both masters but need to choose between money and God. I think the reason He was saying that is because it's pretty important and should not be overlooked.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 27, 2019, 01:43:18 PM
@ Mety
Only 1
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 27, 2019, 01:50:31 PM
I guess I try not to worry about things that are unavoidable.

This is why my philosophy on real estate is what it is. You can save 5-10% by waiting but then you have to worry about timing the drop, missing out on homes you really like, renting, etc etc. Just get what you need/like now, trust that God will help you afford it, and be positive that prices will rebound (as it tends to do in Irvine). And if they don't, look at the pluses, you have have a place to live, you can make the payment and your housing situation is stable.

So should I say that instead? If you believe in God, your home purchase in Irvine will work out? Then I would really need to publish a disclosure. :)

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 03:07:11 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 03:09:04 PM
I guess I try not to worry about things that are unavoidable.

This is why my philosophy on real estate is what it is. You can save 5-10% by waiting but then you have to worry about timing the drop, missing out on homes you really like, renting, etc etc. Just get what you need/like now, trust that God will help you afford it, and be positive that prices will rebound (as it tends to do in Irvine). And if they don't, look at the pluses, you have have a place to live, you can make the payment and your housing situation is stable.

So should I say that instead? If you believe in God, your home purchase in Irvine will work out? Then I would really need to publish a disclosure. :)

What are you talking about real estate here?  ???

So sounds like you don't worry about money. I guess that's better than thinking too much about money.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 27, 2019, 03:43:08 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 04:01:57 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 27, 2019, 04:04:07 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?

No. I can’t give you the answer. You need to think what the Bible says. Then you will find the answer.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 04:11:02 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?

No. I can’t give you the answer. You need to think what the Bible says. Then you will find the answer.

Are you asking if Jesus is the one and only way? Then yes.
I didn’t ask for the answer. I asked you to explain what you are saying. You kind of did explain a bit more.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 27, 2019, 04:13:47 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?

No. I can’t give you the answer. You need to think what the Bible says. Then you will find the answer.

Are you asking if Jesus is the one and only way? Then yes.
I didn’t ask for the answer. I asked you to explain what you are saying. You kind of did explain a bit more.

Think about it. The context of your message and how the other PERSON talked about other religions.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on June 27, 2019, 04:52:58 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?

No. I can’t give you the answer. You need to think what the Bible says. Then you will find the answer.

Are you asking if Jesus is the one and only way? Then yes.
I didn’t ask for the answer. I asked you to explain what you are saying. You kind of did explain a bit more.

Think about it. The context of your message and how the other PERSON talked about other religions.

The other PERSON you are talking about is Jesus?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on June 27, 2019, 05:08:47 PM
@ Mety
Only 1

What do you mean only 1?

You don’t know? Think about it.

Sorry, can’t figure out what you mean. Would you please explain?

No. I can’t give you the answer. You need to think what the Bible says. Then you will find the answer.

Are you asking if Jesus is the one and only way? Then yes.
I didn’t ask for the answer. I asked you to explain what you are saying. You kind of did explain a bit more.

Think about it. The context of your message and how the other PERSON talked about other religions.

The other PERSON you are talking about is Jesus?

The other person on TI. As he talked about other religions.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on June 27, 2019, 05:10:58 PM
Mety, I totally agree. Creativity is also an expression of God's love. King David loved to dance and also played the harp for King Saul. Ever since I was a kid, I loved to design, but it was dormant inside of me most of my 20s and 30s. I realize that this is a gift that God gives you and you have to nurture develop that gift for his glory, otherwise God may take it away from you. Therefore I designed this piece not for business purposes but to bless others. I also want to share about Jesus and his love through my designs. I really enjoy reading your posts as they are very uplifting to those who are believers.

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/yzt86ssnlj3qq9e/jamespark_design_30_jeremiah_17_8.jpg?raw=1)

"I believe every believer is gifted with preaching the gospel in some sort of ways. Some might do well in podiums, some might do well in books, and some might do well in internet forums like this. I'm not sure if I'm doing a good job, but as someone who's received God's grace, I must keep continue to talk about Jesus and His love."

Here is another one I recently designed.

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/5r5c4zu9d967xfe/jamespark_design_27_shame.jpg?raw=1)

Really like the direction of this thread guys! Lots of great comments. GH, I agree and like your post above. Mety… I told you this before and I will am going to say this again.. God has gifted you as an evangelist. I am not sure if there is such a term, but you are like a digital evangelist. Poll shows 38.2% Christians in the house... Mety… continue to do what you are doing and light this place up and we will follow your lead :)

Thanks Panda. I believe every believer is gifted with preaching the gospel in some sort of ways. Some might do well in podiums, some might do well in books, and some might do well in internet forums like this. I'm not sure if I'm doing a good job, but as someone who's received God's grace, I must keep continue to talk about Jesus and His love.

I find money many times get in a way for me and others to have relationship with God. And that is definitely hindering His love in my life and others as I encounter with other believers who are struggling with dominated thoughts about money. And they don't seem to have wrong reasons. They're trying to get rid of debt or tying to buy wife and kids good stuff. So they don't really seem bad, but I can see some kind of anxiety or worries we all have about these financial matters. We might not directly love money, but everything we do sort of ends up with dealing with money for my/our own benefits rather than other's.

I believe we, as living in a sinful human nature, cannot do this job of not loving money on our own. We keep failing and failing. I think that's what Jesus was speaking about as He was teaching the impossibility of rich entering heaven. As most of His teachings were pretty much telling us we can't live a holy life and be saved on our own, He kept telling His disciples and others to come to Him, the Way. How do we come to Him? As GH said, we can come and get closer to God by the work of The Holy Spirit as The Spirit guides us to live more and more like Jesus Christ. In the Name of Jesus, this access is fully granted for those who genuinely believe and admit one's sinful nature. That's where we repent. That's where we turn from going wrong. That's where to re-direct our lives. We might fail again, but the beauty is that God keeps forgiving us as long as we admit. I think as we mature spiritually, we wouldn't live a life of loving money as much as before, but I wanted to hear if any believers here had some practical things they do or exercise to not love money as much.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on June 27, 2019, 05:32:10 PM
Is there some disclosure about talking about other religions? :))
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 08, 2019, 10:21:50 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless even if it’s not popular? (My self, belly, and maybe another person) It all comes down to the core principles. Some or a lot of people might not agree, but there’s nothing we can do. But at the end of the day, I can say I tried to help another fellow human being. Can they?

All I have to say regarding ROI. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)

Living an honest life is great, but sin is a different category. Everyone is under sin. Proof? Everyone is drying as we get older. Death is the result of sin or a sinful life as that's what God promised sin would do to us from the book of Genesis. If anyone is not dying and living forever, only that person is not under sin. (hint. there is Someone like that already)

Your support for homeless people or the shelter in Irvine was one of very few. Belly probably was more enthusiastic because of his hatred toward GP in a political sense, but I'm not him so I can't fully speak for his motivation. As I mentioned earlier to king's reply, helping others is good as long as the motivation is good and pure before God. I could say I donated $5 billion to a homeless shelter or a church but still have a prideful heart wanting to show off and get all other benefits and praise from other people. Then that's not really a good faithful action in God's eyes but a lie and a deceitful corruption. But since only God knows one's heart, we can't really fully know yet of anyone's motivations or intentions. For example, no one knew Judas Iscariot would betray Jesus until the very moment he actually did. No one knew he was a fake believer though Jesus knew from the beginning.

Making ROI is fine. Being smart with God's given talent and money is a good way to present good stewardship. But if we think we must make more ROI and money to expand God's Kingdom, then that's where I'm having a question since God never commanded in The Holy Bible for us to get rich in order to do His work. God rather tells us to trust in Him more than worldly riches and He will do take care of our needs.

I'm not sure who was being jealous, but again this is the heart issue where we can't fully know of others.

@Mety - How many times have you used ROI on TI? (besides this thread) I rest my case.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 08, 2019, 11:15:59 AM
@Panda,

I didn't know you were making these posters. Great job! Keep designing these. I'm sure your designs are being used for God's glory somehow.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 08, 2019, 11:31:01 AM
You mean like the parable of talents, (story of stewardship of talent/money of the 3 servants and what they did with it when the master is away, MAXROI was praised and the one that buried in the dirt and got 0 ROI got punished)?
Basically be wise with money

Interesting example. I didn't think about this verse when I was asking the question, but I guess we can relate to this parable Jesus gave also.

I think the main theme Jesus wanted to teach of this verse you brought up is that the man who made 0 ROI had a wrong knowledge of the master, who really is Jesus Himself. The man who made 0 ROI speaks of Jesus as "a hard man, reaping where you did not sow, and gathering where you scattered no seed.." which are all wrong information about the master, Jesus. However, Jesus gave praise to others because of their faithfulness not because of the result they made with talents/money.

Being wise with money, like you said, is a right advice, but I'm not quite sure if that answers where I was going originally. I was asking the question if you should strive to become rich or if you should not care about that in your mind at all as a Christian. Or if you would like to bring up something in the middle between those two ideas, please share.

Max ROI is just a figure of speech. The best outcome for the situation. Would a fisherman make more money selling tuna or a sustainable fish?

I’m sure being a fisherman back in the day they made a profit or traded for goods that they didn’t have. (barter) It’s like almost a necessity of making money. (like survival)

Those fishermen who were Jesus' disciples gave up their profession and followed Jesus. That means they didn't really go back to their old job though Peter kind of almost did, but Jesus confirmed Peter to feed His people which means Jesus ordained Peter to preach the gospel, to be a fisher of men. So after Jesus ascended to Heaven, Peter didn't really work as a fisherman anymore but became a preacher along with the rest of the disciples/Apostles. How did they manage to have money? Well, people started selling their possessions and bringing money and goods to share in the church. That would be seen as collecting offerings now days. But to get real technical, that's nothing new because God did commend Israel in the OT to pay the Levites certain amount of money for them to minister God's works. So that in the same way is still kept on even to now.

Anyways, it seems like trading and trying to make profits for ourselves were not really what God's people should be after but they should seek to help the poor and strive to learn the Word of God as the main goal. THEN God would take care of the rest as He knows we need money, clothes, housings, etc. I'm not saying don't work and just to go church to learn gospel. I'm saying what our heart desires as the most important thing should not be making money or profits. But I'm curious, if you don't really put money before God, then why are we even looking at stock trying to make the most out of it? Why are we even investing our lifetime trying to be debt free or whatsoever? Why care so much for MAXROI? Many big companies or famous rich people show off their donation to help the poor, but I'm sure they are tax deducting big time off those donations for their own profits anyways. What seems good on the surface doesn't always mean it's the right thing especially with God. Of course, only God knows our heart so we ourselves can't really condemn anyone, but I'm trying to see what you guys are really after in this matter. Is God really before money for you? Do you read God's words and strive to know Him more before looking at the stock portfolio every day?

I want to start off by saying thanks for your post. I have to disagree with you. A person who makes an honest living is not committing sin.

Let’s be clear about helping out people. Who’s the one compassionate to help the homeless even if it’s not popular? (My self, belly, and maybe another person) It all comes down to the core principles. Some or a lot of people might not agree, but there’s nothing we can do. But at the end of the day, I can say I tried to help another fellow human being. Can they?

All I have to say regarding ROI. Don’t knock the person because they work hard, read, up to date with the news and trends. (What does the Bible day about jealousy? Actually there are many versus about jealousy. I rest my case.)

Living an honest life is great, but sin is a different category. Everyone is under sin. Proof? Everyone is drying as we get older. Death is the result of sin or a sinful life as that's what God promised sin would do to us from the book of Genesis. If anyone is not dying and living forever, only that person is not under sin. (hint. there is Someone like that already)

Your support for homeless people or the shelter in Irvine was one of very few. Belly probably was more enthusiastic because of his hatred toward GP in a political sense, but I'm not him so I can't fully speak for his motivation. As I mentioned earlier to king's reply, helping others is good as long as the motivation is good and pure before God. I could say I donated $5 billion to a homeless shelter or a church but still have a prideful heart wanting to show off and get all other benefits and praise from other people. Then that's not really a good faithful action in God's eyes but a lie and a deceitful corruption. But since only God knows one's heart, we can't really fully know yet of anyone's motivations or intentions. For example, no one knew Judas Iscariot would betray Jesus until the very moment he actually did. No one knew he was a fake believer though Jesus knew from the beginning.

Making ROI is fine. Being smart with God's given talent and money is a good way to present good stewardship. But if we think we must make more ROI and money to expand God's Kingdom, then that's where I'm having a question since God never commanded in The Holy Bible for us to get rich in order to do His work. God rather tells us to trust in Him more than worldly riches and He will do take care of our needs.

I'm not sure who was being jealous, but again this is the heart issue where we can't fully know of others.

@Mety - How many times have you used ROI on TI? (besides this thread) I rest my case.

How many times have I used ROI? I'll tell you. I've used the word MAXROI here probably more than 100 times. Now, am I always making MAXROI? No. Am I always thinking and making decisions based on MAXROI? No. I write those facts for whoever wants those information. Delano is one example. I don't personally live or own there.

Now, am I benefitting MAXROI in terms of God's purpose? Yes, because He does not define success on money or fame of this world. Even if I've made half ROI than others in terms of RE or any money, that's still fine because even though I might be planning and making decisions myself, God is the one who completes and makes those things happen. That means even if I were to be eligible and buy the most MAXROI home, if God's plan is NOT there for me, then that will NOT happen no matter what.

We still need to do our best to do everything including making money, but if I think of money all the time, how I would benefit more and more each moment, that is surely having money as my god. I don't want that to happen to any of us especially if you call yourself a Christian.

Why do you want your kids to go to good colleges? Why are you investing in Irvine? Why are you not buying in Santa Ana? Why afraid of TUSD? There is nothing wrong with having these thoughts and plans, but if the final outcome you want out of it is money, then money is probably your god.


Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 09, 2019, 03:55:54 PM
So I guess not that many people really cared about this matter or doesn't want to get involved in such discussion since only a handful of people responded.
Are you guys really all about making more money? More MAXROI brings more happiness for you?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kings on July 09, 2019, 04:21:52 PM
they say money doesn't buy happiness, but it sure helps
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Happiness on July 09, 2019, 04:46:37 PM
they say money doesn't buy happiness, but it sure helps
Prostitution: You can't buy love but you can rent it.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kings on July 09, 2019, 05:18:13 PM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on July 09, 2019, 05:47:13 PM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?

Nope because wealth is not a measurement of faith.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 07:12:56 AM
they say money doesn't buy happiness, but it sure helps
Prostitution: You can't buy love but you can rent it.

It's not love if it's rented. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 10:15:12 AM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?

Nope because wealth is not a measurement of faith.

I think Kings is asking are we not supposed to work hard to bring MAXROI on God's given money. That is correct in a sense. But making MAXROI of money itself is not really something God seeks for. God wants us to use money to love and help others rather than making money for our own benefits. The talents example (Matthew 25) also shows that those who made double the talents were working hard for the master, not for themselves. The master just ended up giving it all to them as a result. We might say we'll help others once we make MAXROI, but that's not true because ones who really wants to love and help others will do so with or without ROI made.

Wealth or anything is really something God has to allow for you to have. You might work hard, diligently, and honestly which could result in much wealth for you, but God is the one who makes that (or anything as a matter of fact) happen for you whether you are His children or not. That's why He is the almighty, all knowing, all controlling God. Otherwise, what makes Him God, right?

Remember, the wealth is not always a positive blessing God allows. It could also be for His purpose to smash you down hard from the top. Egypt, Babylon, Persian, Greek, and Roman Empire are all examples for that purpose throughout the Bible. The U.S. is currently the wealthy powerful nation in this world which God allowed also. The only way we don't end up like the rest of all the powerful nations is repentance. And the true repentance will lead us to help the poor and needy in the Name of Jesus, the true love.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Irvinecommuter on July 10, 2019, 10:24:41 AM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?

Nope because wealth is not a measurement of faith.

I think Kings is asking are we not supposed to work hard to bring MAXROI on God's given money. That is correct in a sense. But making MAXROI of money itself is not really something God seeks for. God wants us to use money to love and help others rather than making money for our own benefits. The talents example (Matthew 25) also shows that those who made double the talents were working hard for the master, not for themselves. The master just ended up giving it all to them as a result. We might say we'll help others once we make MAXROI, but that's not true because ones who really wants to love and help others will do so with or without ROI made.

Wealth or anything is really something God has to allow for you to have. You might work hard, diligently, and honestly which could result in much wealth for you, but God is the one who makes that (or anything as a matter of fact) happen for you whether you are His children or not. That's why He is the almighty, all knowing, all controlling God. Otherwise, what makes Him God, right?

Remember, the wealth is not always a positive blessing God allows. It could also be for His purpose to smash you down hard from the top. Egypt, Babylon, Persian, Greek, and Roman Empire are all examples for that purpose throughout the Bible. The U.S. is currently the wealthy powerful nation in this world which God allowed also. The only way we don't end up like the rest of all the powerful nations is repentance. And the true repentance will lead us to help the poor and needy in the Name of Jesus, the true love.

Right, like most of our current society, worth generally viewed in lockstep with wealth/money.  This is not a Biblical concept.  Wealth is means to an end...not the end itself.  If you use your wealth to help the Kingdom of God, great.  But rather than spending time "maximizing" your ROI, you volunteer or help your church, that is arguably better. 

There is also a fundamental myth (at least for Christians) that you work to maximize your net worth/income.  Monetary wealth is something that God provides...doesn't mean you should be lazy or not work hard but that monetary reward should not be the measurement of faith or your connection with God.  In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

Quote
Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; 5in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; 6in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; 7in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; 9known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; 10sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

2 Cor. 6:4-9.

Quote
Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.

Eph. 4:28.  Note the purpose for working is to share with those in need.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 10:29:27 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 10:35:30 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 10:38:21 AM
Belly found God?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 10:44:19 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 10:59:11 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 11:00:57 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.

Don’t mess with Mety  ;)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Kings on July 10, 2019, 11:01:19 AM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?

Nope because wealth is not a measurement of faith.

I think Kings is asking are we not supposed to work hard to bring MAXROI on God's given money. That is correct in a sense. But making MAXROI of money itself is not really something God seeks for. God wants us to use money to love and help others rather than making money for our own benefits. The talents example (Matthew 25) also shows that those who made double the talents were working hard for the master, not for themselves. The master just ended up giving it all to them as a result. We might say we'll help others once we make MAXROI, but that's not true because ones who really wants to love and help others will do so with or without ROI made.

Wealth or anything is really something God has to allow for you to have. You might work hard, diligently, and honestly which could result in much wealth for you, but God is the one who makes that (or anything as a matter of fact) happen for you whether you are His children or not. That's why He is the almighty, all knowing, all controlling God. Otherwise, what makes Him God, right?

Remember, the wealth is not always a positive blessing God allows. It could also be for His purpose to smash you down hard from the top. Egypt, Babylon, Persian, Greek, and Roman Empire are all examples for that purpose throughout the Bible. The U.S. is currently the wealthy powerful nation in this world which God allowed also. The only way we don't end up like the rest of all the powerful nations is repentance. And the true repentance will lead us to help the poor and needy in the Name of Jesus, the true love.

Right, like most of our current society, worth generally viewed in lockstep with wealth/money.  This is not a Biblical concept.  Wealth is means to an end...not the end itself.  If you use your wealth to help the Kingdom of God, great.  But rather than spending time "maximizing" your ROI, you volunteer or help your church, that is arguably better. 

There is also a fundamental myth (at least for Christians) that you work to maximize your net worth/income.  Monetary wealth is something that God provides...doesn't mean you should be lazy or not work hard but that monetary reward should not be the measurement of faith or your connection with God.  In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

Quote
Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; 5in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; 6in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; 7in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; 9known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; 10sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

2 Cor. 6:4-9.

Quote
Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.

Eph. 4:28.  Note the purpose for working is to share with those in need.

nowhere did i say wealth.  when i said maxroi, i said it in metaphorical terms of preaching the good word of god and expanding the belief in him.

let me rephrase: if god has created us all, then the ones that provide him with the best return on investment in the form of maintaining and spreading his beliefs and receiving christ are rewarded with salvation.  is it not fair to say that god invests a piece of himself in all of us with the eventual transaction, for lack of a better word, that we will provide roi on his original personal capital?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 11:07:09 AM
Are you an atheist?
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 11:09:22 AM
Belly found God?

Seems like you are so firm that I'm YF/BTB. Believe however you want to believe. I gave plenty of answers and evidences that I'm not him. The choice is yours you make.

Which brings me want to say... God gives plenty of evidences that He exists. The skies, air, water, how things are so organized and in order. Some people say they believe in Physics. Okay, who do you think made physics? This is how you can answer when someone asks you how come God didn't give faith to everyone. Everyone is exposed to God's creation and grace. The choice of believing is something you need to participate. If God just makes you have faith then that makes us nothing different than robots, doesn't it? Although He is in full control of everything, He wants us to give our heart.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 11:11:35 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 11:13:02 AM
Take it easy and Relax.  ;)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 11:25:00 AM
Are you an atheist?

I’m not surprised.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 11:30:05 AM
if we are all god's children, then isn't god rewarding those that provide him with maxroi in carrying on his faith?

Nope because wealth is not a measurement of faith.

I think Kings is asking are we not supposed to work hard to bring MAXROI on God's given money. That is correct in a sense. But making MAXROI of money itself is not really something God seeks for. God wants us to use money to love and help others rather than making money for our own benefits. The talents example (Matthew 25) also shows that those who made double the talents were working hard for the master, not for themselves. The master just ended up giving it all to them as a result. We might say we'll help others once we make MAXROI, but that's not true because ones who really wants to love and help others will do so with or without ROI made.

Wealth or anything is really something God has to allow for you to have. You might work hard, diligently, and honestly which could result in much wealth for you, but God is the one who makes that (or anything as a matter of fact) happen for you whether you are His children or not. That's why He is the almighty, all knowing, all controlling God. Otherwise, what makes Him God, right?

Remember, the wealth is not always a positive blessing God allows. It could also be for His purpose to smash you down hard from the top. Egypt, Babylon, Persian, Greek, and Roman Empire are all examples for that purpose throughout the Bible. The U.S. is currently the wealthy powerful nation in this world which God allowed also. The only way we don't end up like the rest of all the powerful nations is repentance. And the true repentance will lead us to help the poor and needy in the Name of Jesus, the true love.

Right, like most of our current society, worth generally viewed in lockstep with wealth/money.  This is not a Biblical concept.  Wealth is means to an end...not the end itself.  If you use your wealth to help the Kingdom of God, great.  But rather than spending time "maximizing" your ROI, you volunteer or help your church, that is arguably better. 

There is also a fundamental myth (at least for Christians) that you work to maximize your net worth/income.  Monetary wealth is something that God provides...doesn't mean you should be lazy or not work hard but that monetary reward should not be the measurement of faith or your connection with God.  In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

Quote
Rather, as servants of God we commend ourselves in every way: in great endurance; in troubles, hardships and distresses; 5in beatings, imprisonments and riots; in hard work, sleepless nights and hunger; 6in purity, understanding, patience and kindness; in the Holy Spirit and in sincere love; 7in truthful speech and in the power of God; with weapons of righteousness in the right hand and in the left; 8through glory and dishonor, bad report and good report; genuine, yet regarded as impostors; 9known, yet regarded as unknown; dying, and yet we live on; beaten, and yet not killed; 10sorrowful, yet always rejoicing; poor, yet making many rich; having nothing, and yet possessing everything.

2 Cor. 6:4-9.

Quote
Anyone who has been stealing must steal no longer, but must work, doing something useful with their own hands, that they may have something to share with those in need.

Eph. 4:28.  Note the purpose for working is to share with those in need.

nowhere did i say wealth.  when i said maxroi, i said it in metaphorical terms of preaching the good word of god and expanding the belief in him.

let me rephrase: if god has created us all, then the ones that provide him with the best return on investment in the form of maintaining and spreading his beliefs and receiving christ are rewarded with salvation.  is it not fair to say that god invests a piece of himself in all of us with the eventual transaction, for lack of a better word, that we will provide roi on his original personal capital?

Interesting. I thought since we were on a topic of money, you were referring that. My bad for misunderstanding.

I wouldn't want to think of a way that God invests in us. Though He made us in His image which we are to bring glory to God (which really means reflect His goodness to others), it's not like He is waiting for us to make good returns of His investment. I would say that the most important thing God wants us to do is have faith in Him and abide/remain in Him. For example, when are we most happy of our babies? Is it when they do something new? Saying some new words? Those are all good, but we're probably most happy when they are in our arms sleeping and remaining in us peacefully. We don't really force our kids to bring MAXROI or anything.

God doesn't really need us to do anything to display His glory. He is already the Glorious One. Then why are we even trying to evangelize or preach His words? It's like a natural thing as we're exposed to a good thing. We share in Yelp, Facebook, etc when we find a good eatery or anything. If we have truly received His grace and are surely thankful for Him that He forgave our sins through His Son, Jesus, we WILL spread the good news no matter what. But at the same time, we'll continue to stay in His arms instead of worrying and thinking about bringing MAXROI to our God. If anyone is trying to teach you need to do additional stuff to gain God's favor, then that's probably a false teaching.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 11:33:57 AM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.

Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 12:18:21 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.

Technically a person can be poor if they live in Irvine. (low income apartments)
Also, if they don’t save, spend like no other, house payment too much to handle. [the gain/equity is unrealized aka funny money until they sell]

I’m not passing any judgement.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 01:31:42 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.



I think you crossed some posts here.

I was responding to irvinecommuter's post:

Quote
In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

So I was saying that's why I'm not rich... heh.

And I did not say that not being rich (or being poor) means automatic entry into heaven, not sure how you drew that conclusion.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 01:42:51 PM
I was respond to Mety’s post
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 01:53:06 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.



I think you crossed some posts here.

I was responding to irvinecommuter's post:

Quote
In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

So I was saying that's why I'm not rich... heh.

And I did not say that not being rich (or being poor) means automatic entry into heaven, not sure how you drew that conclusion.

Rich or not, you and God know your situation more than I do so I can't say any further. However, if you're a Irvine home (SFR) owner, you're probably wealthier than the majority of the folks in OC or even in this country. So from the perspective of common people, you're rich. If you say your're not, then you're what you say you are.
 
Being more difficult of having connection with God (as IC puts) or being rich so that you're farther away from God (as The Bible puts) are both hindrance into Heaven. The way you were saying you were 99%er was you're not rich so that you're kinda of safe. Well, if you didn't mean it that way, then I apologize, but that's why I said I knew you were sort of joking.  ;)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 01:55:15 PM
Belly found God?

Seems like you are so firm that I'm YF/BTB. Believe however you want to believe. I gave plenty of answers and evidences that I'm not him. The choice is yours you make.

I don't think Mety is BTB. I only joked that Mety was his wife because Mety kept supporting BTB's posts/position.

BTB was notorious for his risque (to put it mildy) posts, and there has not been any post by Mety that remotely comes close to that.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 02:11:16 PM
Belly found God?

Seems like you are so firm that I'm YF/BTB. Believe however you want to believe. I gave plenty of answers and evidences that I'm not him. The choice is yours you make.

I don't think Mety is BTB. I only joked that Mety was his wife because Mety kept supporting BTB's posts/position.

BTB was notorious for his risque (to put it mildy) posts, and there has not been any post by Mety that remotely comes close to that.

To be fair, I wasn't really supporting BTB. I only tried to clear any misunderstandings you guys had from him. I do that with others TI members also, but since most of you didn't get BTB most of the time, which resulted me to clarify a lot, it seemed like I was supporting him or some sort. I did agree with him many times, but also didn't fully agree with what he was saying on some topics. However, I do think TI is better with his presence.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on July 10, 2019, 02:12:26 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.



I think you crossed some posts here.

I was responding to irvinecommuter's post:

Quote
In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

So I was saying that's why I'm not rich... heh.

And I did not say that not being rich (or being poor) means automatic entry into heaven, not sure how you drew that conclusion.

Rich or not, you and God know your situation more than I do so I can't say any further. However, if you're a Irvine home (SFR) owner, you're probably wealthier than the majority of the folks in OC or even in this country. So from the perspective of common people, you're rich. If you say your're not, then you're what you say you are.
 
Being more difficult of having connection with God (as IC puts) or being rich so that you're farther away from God (as The Bible puts) are both hindrance into Heaven. The way you were saying you were 99%er was you're not rich so that you're kinda of safe. Well, if you didn't mean it that way, then I apologize, but that's why I said I knew you were sort of joking.  ;)

Not if you live in low housing apartments.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Mety on July 10, 2019, 02:13:46 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.



I think you crossed some posts here.

I was responding to irvinecommuter's post:

Quote
In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

So I was saying that's why I'm not rich... heh.

And I did not say that not being rich (or being poor) means automatic entry into heaven, not sure how you drew that conclusion.

Rich or not, you and God know your situation more than I do so I can't say any further. However, if you're a Irvine home (SFR) owner, you're probably wealthier than the majority of the folks in OC or even in this country. So from the perspective of common people, you're rich. If you say your're not, then you're what you say you are.
 
Being more difficult of having connection with God (as IC puts) or being rich so that you're farther away from God (as The Bible puts) are both hindrance into Heaven. The way you were saying you were 99%er was you're not rich so that you're kinda of safe. Well, if you didn't mean it that way, then I apologize, but that's why I said I knew you were sort of joking.  ;)

Not if you live in low housing apartments.

You are correct and I had a friend who lived in a low income housing in Irvine.
But we were talking about IrvineHomeOwner.  ;D
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on July 10, 2019, 05:04:15 PM
So that's why I'm a 99%er. :)

Define 99%er.

Someone who is not a 1%er. :)

I know you are kind of joking, but if you live and own a home in Irvine, you are for sure not a 99%er.


Not really. I forgot the number but to be in the 1% in the US you have to make much more than what we do.

I don't live in a $4m Irvine home... nor do I want to.

I'm not trying to be all accurate with numbers but trying to stay with the point. That is you're rich in many perspectives of this world, even of this country, and even of this county. You're not excused to say you're poor therefore you have no problem entering the Heaven.



I think you crossed some posts here.

I was responding to irvinecommuter's post:

Quote
In fact, God says that the richer your are...the more difficult it is for you to have a connection with God. 

So I was saying that's why I'm not rich... heh.

And I did not say that not being rich (or being poor) means automatic entry into heaven, not sure how you drew that conclusion.

Rich or not, you and God know your situation more than I do so I can't say any further. However, if you're a Irvine home (SFR) owner, you're probably wealthier than the majority of the folks in OC or even in this country. So from the perspective of common people, you're rich. If you say your're not, then you're what you say you are.
 
Being more difficult of having connection with God (as IC puts) or being rich so that you're farther away from God (as The Bible puts) are both hindrance into Heaven. The way you were saying you were 99%er was you're not rich so that you're kinda of safe. Well, if you didn't mean it that way, then I apologize, but that's why I said I knew you were sort of joking.  ;)

I see “rich” differently which is what I said many posts ago.

We work many hours a day to afford our home. Just like a family who has to work hard to rent in Irvine or live in a less expensive city.

If one or both of us didn’t have to work, that’s “rich” to me. And that’s what I mean, if I could work less and do more for others, that would be great (although the work I do I consider beneficial to my company and thus to my fellow employees).

Should I move to a less “rich” area like where I grew up? Get a different job where I work less? But we always want better for our family than what we had.

And my statement as a 99%er wasn’t meant to be a qualifier of salvation, it was more of a tongue in cheek verification that I’m not all about money (so not worried about MAXROI as I said in an earlier post).
Title: Re: God?
Post by: fortune11 on July 10, 2019, 05:27:55 PM
I have nothing of value to add to the “god” angle of this discussion but on the definition of “rich “ —

when your passive income is more than your run rate living expenses , that defines “rich”  in my view, regardless of what’s wealth level you are at .

This is why you will find seven figure income earners who are always feeling poor whereas someone who makes a lot less , but invests and spends wisely can feel rich and relatively free

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on July 15, 2019, 07:09:27 AM
Thanks Mety,

We all have spiritual gifts. For example, you have a really amazing gift of sharing God's love with your words. I could never write like you do. For me, I like express myself through design and that is one of my spiritual gifts. Outside of work: real estate, finance, and business, I enjoy designing for God's Glory. I will upload some of my recent designs for your guys to see. It usually takes me about 30 minutes for each design.

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/toi0w9g08hwas1v/rescued_by_love.jpg?raw=1)

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/j7kvmzovwrstccf/jamespark_design_28_mom_prayer.jpg?raw=1)

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/94pptfgp2u02cpz/vision.jpg?raw=1)

Panda

@Panda,

I didn't know you were making these posters. Great job! Keep designing these. I'm sure your designs are being used for God's glory somehow.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 01, 2019, 10:36:07 AM
My family moved the United States from South Korea when I was 4 years old so pretty much English is my native tongue. These are my two designs attempts using Korean Typography. Hope you guys like Panda's K-Designs. Panda is going to teach you guys Korean.

But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

Matthew 6:6

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/rvrc4mcbxhcuc1v/Praying-Girl.jpg?raw=1)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 01, 2019, 10:41:41 AM
This was my first attempt designing with Korean Typography and I must say that Korean Typography is beautiful.

Translation by Panda:

What is the meaning of Love? Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

1 Corinthians 13:4-8

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/nb4ulgoeotso165/husbands_love_your_wife_korean.jpg?raw=1)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:22:23 AM
하나님은 당신을 사랑하십니다.

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/fo544f79l0dt4x6/the-word-of-god.jpg?raw=1)

For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrows; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.

Hebrews 4:12
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:23:14 AM
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. - John 14:27

(https://www.dropbox.com/s/k0a9nezc805elrc/Peace.jpg?raw=1)

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:24:42 AM
(https://www.dropbox.com/s/d3dwcja7pvqgn3q/cinderella_design_korea.jpg?raw=1)

Source: https://www.thegospelcoalition.org/article/christianity-quit-growing-korea/ - I was inspired to design this piece after reading this article.

"If South Korea were a Disney Princess, she would be Cinderella."

"Oppressed and abused for years by her closest relatives, Japan and China, the country finally broke free in the early 1950s after World War II and the Korean War."

I will give them a heart to know me, that I am the Lord. They will be my people, and I will be their God, for they will return to me with all their heart.

Jeremiah 24:7
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:30:57 AM
(https://www.dropbox.com/s/xq7wbaqrdqn769j/worry2.jpg?raw=1)

하나님은 당신을 사랑하십니다.

Philippians 4:6-7 & Isaiah 26:3 | Do Not Worry.
Do not worry about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, presenting your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7

When we worry about things that haven't taken place yet, we are pretty much on our own. God can't help us with those things, because his will is that we fully live and enjoy today, while completely trusting him for the future.

When we worry, we are letting our minds wander around from the past, to the present to the future, and we wonder or reason about what is going to happen to us, and we start to lose our peace. God intends for us to keep our minds on what we are doing. I don't mean to say that we never take the time to reflect about our past or make plans for the future. But when we do, it should be something we do intentionally with purpose, but not with loose mind that never focuses on anything. All these type of thoughts will pressure us, because they are not God's will. The prophet Isaiah said that God would keep us in perfect peace when our mind is fixed on him.

You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.

Isaiah 26:3

Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:40:09 AM
(https://www.dropbox.com/s/6q4g8rnhvau3kcd/marraige-book.jpg?raw=1)

"What if God designed Marriage to make us holy more than to make us happy?"

"It makes sense that God would design the fundamental human relationship - that between husband and wife - as a relationship that complements our spiritual walk. The stronger we grow as spouses, persevering and pressing further into our marriage, the more we'll develop the very character traits we need to become mature believers. Growing in our marriage, then, can build up our faith, even as growing in our faith will build our marriages. It's a wonderful circle of spiritual life!

- Gary Thomas

May the Lord direct your hearts into God's love and Christ's perseverance.

2 Thessalonians 3:5
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on August 22, 2019, 07:49:12 AM
@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Panda on August 22, 2019, 07:58:33 AM
Haha.. I have no idea what Disney character North Korea is.

If Mety evangelizes like he does and I continue to design for the lord, we are going to have Irvine locked down with the good word. :)

@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on August 22, 2019, 08:51:03 AM
You can talk about it. But to live by it is another thing. For example, To let people clearly discriminate other people based or race and sexuality on TI and not saying anything. (passive Christian, turning your back)
But I’m not surprised anybody can copy and paste lines.

Haha.. I have no idea what Disney character North Korea is.

If Mety evangelizes like he does and I continue to design for the lord, we are going to have Irvine locked down with the good word. :)

@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: Happiness on August 22, 2019, 08:55:56 AM
@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)

South Korea is an awesome country. They have bested their old colonial master Japan in terms of technology and pop culture export.

South Korea maintains close relations with the United States, Russia, mainland China, Taiwan, and Japan, countries with serious conflicts with each other that South Korea refuses to be drawn into or take sides on. In other words, South Korea is no other country’s bitch.

North Korea is still mainland China's bitch.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on August 22, 2019, 09:57:25 AM
I don’t want to quote Trump, but I am. But like he said about Ted putting his hand on the Bible. That’s what I feel some members do on TI. Praise God, but turn your back when people are treated worse than animals.

#RadioSilentorSomething

You can talk about it. But to live by it is another thing. For example, To let people clearly discriminate other people based or race and sexuality on TI and not saying anything. (passive Christian, turning your back)
But I’m not surprised anybody can copy and paste lines.

Haha.. I have no idea what Disney character North Korea is.

If Mety evangelizes like he does and I continue to design for the lord, we are going to have Irvine locked down with the good word. :)

@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)
Title: Re: God?
Post by: irvinehomeowner on August 22, 2019, 10:20:31 AM
You can talk about it. But to live by it is another thing. For example, To let people clearly discriminate other people based or race and sexuality on TI and not saying anything. (passive Christian, turning your back)
But I’m not surprised anybody can copy and paste lines.

Haha.. I have no idea what Disney character North Korea is.

If Mety evangelizes like he does and I continue to design for the lord, we are going to have Irvine locked down with the good word. :)

@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)

You still seem to be the only one who think other members are promoting discrimination. In fact, you are doing that yourself every time you call other members "fat'" (which you have done numerous times now). I asked you before why you are discriminating against people who are weight challenged.

Discrimination is not just about race or sexuality.
Title: Re: God?
Post by: eyephone on August 22, 2019, 10:26:48 AM
You can talk about it. But to live by it is another thing. For example, To let people clearly discriminate other people based or race and sexuality on TI and not saying anything. (passive Christian, turning your back)
But I’m not surprised anybody can copy and paste lines.

Haha.. I have no idea what Disney character North Korea is.

If Mety evangelizes like he does and I continue to design for the lord, we are going to have Irvine locked down with the good word. :)

@Panda: I think you do a pretty good job at spreading the good word too.

So if South Korea is Cinderella, who is North Korea? :)

You still seem to be the only one who think other members are promoting discrimination. In fact, you are doing that yourself every time you call other members "fat'" (which you have done numerous times now). I asked you before why you are discriminating against people who are weight challenged.

Discrimination is not just about race or sexuality.

1. How is it discrimination when it’s true? (If it’s not true let me know, but the previ