04-07-2004, 05:59 PM #1
The Passion of the Christ (arguments for and against)
Tock asked me to start a new thread on this. So that is what I am doing. It was in response to why he did not believe in Jesus Christ. Since this is still related to the Passion of the Christ and the crucifixicion, that's how I will start off the thread. You will find the subject followed by the Old Testament prediction and followed up by the New Testament description of the events. I am on things that pertain to the movie. The odds of 48 prophecies being fulfilled is
1 in 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,
000,000,000,000. Below are just a few.
Originally Posted by Short Version
Isaiah 40:3, "A voice of one calling: 'In the desert prepare the way for the LORD; make straight in the wilderness a highway for our God.'"
Matthew 3:1-2, "In those days John the Baptist came, preaching in the Desert of Judea and saying, 'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.'"
Isaiah 53:3, "He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not."
Rejected by His own people
John 7:5, "For even his own brothers did not believe in him."
John 7:48, "Have any of the rulers or the Pharisees believed in Him?"
Zechariah 12:10, "And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication. They will look on Me, the Aleph and Tav, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for Him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for Him as one mourns for an only Son."
His side pierced
John 19:34, "...one of the soldiers pierced Yeshua's side with a spear, bringing a sudden flow of blood and water."
Psalm 22:1, 11-18, "For the director of music. To the tune of "The Doe of the Morning." A psalm of David. My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?...Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help. Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan. Dogs have
surrounded me; a band of evil men has encircled me, they have pierced my hands and my feet. I can count all my bones; people stare and gloat over me. They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing."
Luke 23:33, "When they came to the place called the Skull, there they crucified Him (Yeshua), along with the criminals -- one on His right, the other on His left."
John 19:33, "But when they came to Yeshua and saw that He was already dead, they did not break His legs."
John 19:23-24, "When the soldiers crucified Yeshua, they took his clothes, dividing them into four shares, one for each of them, with the undergarment remaining. This garment was seamless, woven in one piece from top to bottom. Let's not tear it, they said to one another. 'Let's decide by lot who will get it.' This happened that the scripture might be fulfilled which said, 'They divided my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing.' So this is what the soldiers did."
These are my beliefs as well. You could argue that the Old Testament had been changed to match the teachings in the New Testament, however if you look at the recent discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls (which was translated by a variety of people with different religions, including atheists, and is available for purchase in your local bookstore now) you will find an almost identical match to the current version of the Old Testament. Therefore, it is my conclusion, that the Old Testament truly predicted the coming of Jesus, and the events that would happen to him hundreds of years before the event happened. I'm just trying to keep the debate to what I see as facts, instead of opinions.
04-07-2004, 07:31 PM #2
Very nice Jason.........u spent some time making this thread.
I for one liked the movie and think it was close to how it happened....it seemed to follow the bible. I had never really thought how much Christ suffered to make it where my sins can be washed away by the blood of the Lamb(Jesus Christ for those that don't know). With allows me a mere sinner the chance to repent and be cleaned and enter the Kingdom of God.
04-07-2004, 07:57 PM #3Originally Posted by bornbad71
I've seen the movie twice now and hope to see it once more. I cannot begin to imagine the pain that He suffered. There is no way He could have endured that torture without God keeping Him alive. There was some artistic interpretation in there (Satan and the Anti-Christ), but most things seem to line up very well with the Bible. One thing that I didn't necessarily agree with was the hanging of Judas. I would think he would have had to have been much higher for his guts to come out after he fell from the tree that he was hanging on, but still the same basic concept.
I would say it was probably the most accurate interpretation we will ever see.
04-07-2004, 08:05 PM #4
I do respect anyone's beliefs as their own but it isn't too hard to make things line up nice when the book about it was written well after the fact. Am I wrong or wasn't the bible scribed well after these events?
04-07-2004, 08:06 PM #5
i'm in on this. i havent the time now but i'll be back to add some insight into tocks side of the debate
04-07-2004, 08:16 PM #6Originally Posted by bookman
When various books of the Old Testament were written?
How they were translated?
The oldest original manuscript found?
The accuracy of the manuscripts found in relation to one another?
The time periods of the books of the New Testament written?
The # of original manuscripts found around the world?
How close they were to one another, even though they were found all over the world?
The fact that pieces of the Old Testament were found AFTER the New Testament was written, and they were still accurate?
That's a big question and each question could have a whole chapter of a book written about it if you want a full explanation. If you really want to know, and want to read about it.....check out A Case for Christ written by Lee Strobel who was an atheist when he began writing this book. It gives a brief rundown on some of those specific questions. I believe that's the right book.
I'm out for the night guys. I'll debate another time.
04-07-2004, 08:56 PM #7
Alright....... here is the only post i will make here on this subject..
The message, the meaninig of the suffering, the sacrifice was done as an act of love... Imagine, he was showing us what it meant to follow his 2 commandments that he gave to us... Love God, and to Love one another..
then he showed us the level of love that he had for us...
Now, If you have a child, (wife, mother, whoever is most important to you)(and i will use myself as an example) and my daughter was taken from me, sexually abused, tortured, and killed in the most vial way... For me to have the same love as Christ... I would have to put myself, my life in the gas chamber in his place, to accept his punishment and allow him to go free..
that is the sacrifice that God gave to us, and the sacrifice that Jesus did for us..... and to me............. that is the real message.........
Now imagine that for each stroke of the whip, each punch from the guard, each indignity that he suffered, each one was a punishment for every sin that i had committed in my life, every lie, every feeling of pride in self, every greed, and curse that i had, everytime i became angry with someone.......
I cannot love as Jesus, nor will i sacrifice as he did.......... it is not in me.. I know that in my life, all that is good, is because he is with me......
And yes the other thread on this after some debate with Tock, I gave up.. to a point.. and i told him several times that i would pray for him.... but in truth, i did, I prayed for mercy for him... and for all non believers, that they will be shown mercy... this is not a message of fear.... (love me or else) for i do not fear God, or judgement, for i am promised that i will be saved.
Rather the message is that he loved you and sacrificed for you long before you were created........... If someone loves you that much.......... how could you not love them back.??
Originally Posted by PTbyJasonThe answer to your every question
A bigot is a person obstinately or intolerantly devoted
to his or her own opinions and prejudices, especially
one exhibiting intolerance, and animosity toward those of differing beliefs.
If you get scammed by an UGL listed on this board or by another member here, it's all part of the game and learning experience for you,
we do not approve nor support any sources that may be listed on this site.
I will not do source checks for you, the peer review from other members should be enough to help you make a decision on your quest. Buyer beware.
Why the Police will Kick your ass
04-07-2004, 08:56 PM #8Originally Posted by bookman
The old testament was scribed hundreds of centuries before the New Testament. There have even been some discoveries this century (the Dead Sea Scrolls) that show the accuracy of the Old Testament. So the Old Testament was not just put together after the New Testament in order to make it match.
04-07-2004, 09:01 PM #9Originally Posted by floyd_turbo
I'm gone for the night once again.
04-07-2004, 09:05 PM #10Originally Posted by PTbyJason
04-07-2004, 11:47 PM #11Originally Posted by bookman
68 AD for Matthew
60-70 AD for Mark
60 AD for Luke
90 AD for John
Considering that the event is reputed to have happened in 30 AD, you can see that by the most charitable assessments, the gospels were written some 30 to 60 years after the actual events. Considering how most people were illiterate back then, and how people are prone to "pump up" stories about celebrities, given the length of time until things were written down, and given the lack of the sorts of verification and double-checking methods used in modern journalism, my guess is that there is a significant difference between what actually happened and what got written down.
What is fun is to ask a fundamentalist who wrote the first 5 books of the Bible, and who wrote them. Moses is supposed to have written them, or at least, this is the "traditional" view.
A note from Halley's Handbook:
"The modern critical view is that it is a composite work of various schools of priests, made about the 8th century BC, for partisan purposes, based on oral traditions, the principal redactors of which are called "J", "E," and "P." And although the critics differ widely among themselves as to just which sections to assign to these respective editors, the theory is put forth under the specious claim that it is the "assured result" of "modern scholarship." According to theis view, it is not real history, but only a "patchwork picked out of a rag bag of scattered legends."
Yah, they don't think too much of "modern scholarship," and go on to explain how Moses could very well have written the books in question. Only thing is, "modern scholarship" is based on the best fragments of the oldest documents in existance, and the Halley's Handbook authors are clinging to nothing more than "tradition."
Moses supposedly wrote the account of his leading over half the population out of Egypt and the subsequent decimation of the Egyption pharaoh's army. But, there is no corroborating mention of these cataclysmic events in any of the then-contemporary writings, and they are plentiful. The only place this story occurrs is in the Old Testament of the Hebrews.
So . . . if the "Exodus" account in the Old Testament is nothing more than myth, can other parts of the Bible be "fiction" as well?
To anyone with a lick of common sense, the answer would be yes, of course. But . . . to anyone taught that the Bible is 100% inerrant, 100% true, 100% accurate, and 100% the Word of God, such an admission would be heresy, and would amount to them saying that the entire Bible was NOT the Inerrant Word Of God, and because of this attachment to the "Inerrancy Doctrine," you will find many fundamentalists clinging to the certainty of the Bible's account of the Exodus fable even though there is a conspicuous absence of evidence that such a thing ever happened.
Ya, I can explain why the Noah's Ark story is only a fable, but you will find fundamentalists clinging to the fiction with so much certitude that they not only beleive Noah existed 6000 years ago, but that he had dinosaurs on the ark with all the other animals (Institute for Creation Research) . . .
And then these fundamentalists, so wedded to their Bible fictions, insist that young school children be taught this stuff as fact in public schools. Imagine what would happn to American Education if they suceed. Kids grow up thinking the Earth is only 6500 years old, that dinosaurs lived 6000 years ago, that evolution is "the devil's doctrine." Now, put a generation of minds thusly trained against a generation of Chinese, Korean, Indian, and European minds trained in mathematics, modern biology, geology, languages, etc. Which cultures would you think would be better prepared to compete in technological endeavors?
Hah . . .
Anyway, back to the topic at hand . . .
The bible is not a reliable text for much of anything.
Yah, that about sums it up . . .
04-08-2004, 01:11 AM #12
Jason, you bring up good points, but the ambiguity of the Psalms of David leave much to be imagined. In the Psalms David speaks of a prophet who would be rejected by his own people, tortured, and slain, all in the eyes of those who saw him as a heretic. Any prophet of that time would have fit that description. Any man who came to preach the word of God, claiming of his own kingdom in heaven (indirectly of course) would be crucified in much the same fashion. I am not disputing the sanctity of Christ, not his contributions, but in this argument merely that the descriptions of Christ's coming as the Messiah would have fit any man at the time preaching the name of Yahweh.
04-08-2004, 01:22 AM #13New Member
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As far as the movie itself goes, I don't think they were even trying to tell the real Jesus story. The included a little "let he who is without sin cast the first stone" scene, and even the Church will admit now that this little patr of the story is a fiction.
04-08-2004, 09:11 AM #14Originally Posted by Tock
If you look back in history you will indeed find that many in that time could not write. Stories were passed down by word of mouth throughout the world because of this. In fact you will find most "documents" from that time written down hundreds of years after the actual event happened. Do you rememebr before we had cell phones and you had to write down or remember all of your friends phone numbers? I honestly knew tons of phone numbers because it was what I was use to. Today however, with my cell phone, I never have to write down or remember a phone number. Half the time, I can't tell you my phone number. lol It was just the way things were done back then. Things were remembered and passed down from person to person. Now here are a few things that Tock forgot to mention.
Many books of the New Testament were written down by witnesses of the events that happened. That doesn't happen normally. You won't find many times that events were written down by the actual witnesses in ancient history. So the fact that these events were written down only 30 - 60 years after the actual event shows that there were more likely to be accurate than other historical documents.
Edit: Table isn't working. I'll type it out
Author.....................................When Written..........Earlierst Copy........Time Span.....# of copies
1) Homer (Iliad).....................900 BC.................400 BC.......................500 years.......643
2) Ceasar (The Gallic Wars)....100-44 BC..........900 AD.......................1,000 years...........10
3) Plato (Tetralogies)...............427 - 347 BC......900 AD......................1,200 years............7
4) Aristotle.................................384 - 322 BC......1,100 AD....................1,400 years............49
5) Herodotus (History)..............480 - 425 BC......900 AD.......................1,300 years............8
6) Euripedes................................480 - 460 BC......1,100 AD....................1,500 years.............9
7) New Testament.......................50 - 90 AD...........130 AD......................30 years.............24,000
If you look at the chart, you can draw your own conclusions on the accuracy of the Bible vs other historical documents that are accepted.
One other thing.....with the # of documents found (24,000) they were amazingly accurate from one copy to the next, even though they were passed down only by word of mouth.
04-08-2004, 09:36 AM #15Originally Posted by rambo
All verses NIV
Psalm 22:14 - I am poured out like water; and all of my bones are out of joint.
Jesus had his side pierced, "poured out like water" and when he was crucified his bones were pulled out of joint.
Psalms 22:16 - .....they have pierced my hands and my feet.
Crucifixion was not even in existance at the time of David's writings
Psalms 22:18 - They divide my garments among them and cast lots for my clothing
Kind of a weird statement to be put in there. How often does that happen to someone anyway?
04-08-2004, 09:56 AM #16
I look in to this stuff a lot and always like to hear peoples thoughts. Just to share this thought, I was watching a show talking about an incredible piece of architecture built around 1500 years ago that just withstood a 7.5 mag earthquake. That's not the point though, what interested me was the accounts of the building from people at the time it was built. It had a large dome with windows encircling the bottom where the dome connected to the building. People described this as the dome "sat on a chain of light" and "floated on angels" and things like that. These are really beautiful describing sentences to illustrate the look but all I could think was this is how these people described things back then, and then thousands of years later we look at these things for our factual evidence of what happenned. Descriptions in all old scriptures have this fantastical way of describing things and I could imagine over 30-60 years some fantastic things might have been added to these stories. But I have as much proof of that as you have that it didn't happen so .... who knows. I certainly won't sit here and pretend I do.
04-08-2004, 10:28 AM #17Junior Member
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I don't have a lot of interest in attempting to prove the bible right or wrong. As far as belief and worship goes, I ask, why should I bother?
04-08-2004, 11:15 AM #18Originally Posted by Skin-and-Bone
It's your choice bro. No one can force you to believe one thing or another. I sought after more knowledge and understanding of past events, and because of that it changed every aspect of my life. My life is completely different now, and that is not just an opinion. Others can see that as well....before that argument even gets started. Now if that is just because it's something I believe in and I molded myself that way, as some will argue, then so be it. I have a much happier life now, and I am enjoying it. I personally feel there was a change from within me, that I could not have done on my own.
04-08-2004, 11:39 AM #19Junior Member
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What I'm driving at, is that isn't the idea that everyone will be forgiven for their sins? So, even if you die without caring about anything in the bible, you should still be forgiven anyway?
04-08-2004, 11:54 AM #20Originally Posted by Skin-and-Bone
For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten son, that whosever believeth in Him, shall not perish, but have eternal life.
Based on this, you must believe that God gave His only Son to die on the cross for our sins, and if we want to have eternal life (in Heaven) we must believe this to be true.
04-08-2004, 11:59 AM #21Originally Posted by Skin-and-Bone
I'm sure there are some Christian groups that interpret the Bible that way, but the ususal interpretation is that the vast majority of people that God created are doomed to suffer in the most vile invention ever imagined -- an eternal Hell. Some Christians will tell you that you're going to Hell if you are not baptized in the name of the Father Son and Holy Ghost, some will tell you that if you do not "accept Jesus into your heart" then you'll go to Hell, others will tell you that there is "only one true church" (like the Catholics, the Jehovah Witnesses, the Worldwide Church of God, the Church of Christ, and others) and if you don't have your membership with them, you're going to Hell.
The Jehovah's Witnesses, when they first started out, said that only 144,000 people were going to Heaven. Then when their membership reached 145,000, they had to revise that number upward. It went up to 244,000, then some other number, then they decided that there would be 144,000 "elect" (some sort of special) that would sit on the right hand of God.
It's all just craziness.
Then there are churches that are certain that there is no literal Hell, that God never intended to send anyone to a nasty place like that. But there aren't too many of those, because you motivate more people to support your church if you can convince them they'll go to Hell if they don't.
So, to answer your question, there are as many "official" answers as there are official churches. In the end, it's all up to you, what seems most reasonable to you.
04-08-2004, 12:02 PM #22
Gentlemen, just as a quick aside, I would like to say that there is no beverage quite as satisfying on a cool crisp morning as hot, fresh, black, coffee.
That's all I wanted to say . . .
Back to the wrangling . . .
04-08-2004, 12:17 PM #23Originally Posted by PTbyJason
Yah . . . Believe, "or else."
That, my friend, is what I call a "religion based on fear."
04-08-2004, 01:43 PM #24Originally Posted by Tock
I will address this post later. You gave an explanation, but you missed a lot of stuff. Some points I will agree with you on, others I will explain it in greater detail.
04-08-2004, 04:03 PM #25Originally Posted by PTbyJason
Yah, but the general gist is the Bible gives a choice. Either
a) Beleive and go to Heaven, or
b) Don't beleive and suffer Eternal Torment in Hell.
Not much of a choice, IMHO.
Plus, it seems to me that any god that would invent such a thing as a place of eternal, neverending torture would probably be a demon, and not a benevolent, loving God who could just snuff out people with honest doubts and let it go at that.
That's one reason why I think the whole thing is just a silly work of fiction.
04-08-2004, 04:54 PM #26Originally Posted by Tock
Will you listen to the explanation with an open mind?
I won't be able to respond to anything else until tomorrow.
04-08-2004, 05:03 PM #27Originally Posted by PTbyJason
Yes, I will.
04-09-2004, 10:27 AM #28
1) Who Likes Hell?
2) Hell, the Torture Chamber?
- A) Separation from God
- B) Various Physical Aspects of Hell
- - 1) Flames
- - 2) Worms
- - 3) Gnashing Teeth
3) Identical Punishment for All?
5) Forced to Go to Heaven
Iím writing this post in response to Tockís post. It is the argument of the existence of Hell and a loving God co-existing. These are my views based on my opinions and inspired by the notes of J.P. Moreland. I never take anything someone else says as the final word, but I use it as a basis to dive deeper into the Word of God and learn for myself. I would not encourage anyone to take my words as the Gospel or final word on this subject, and I am merely offering up my personal views on the subject and will give reference to the verses that justify my views.
To have the ability to take what is being said, one must forget their current mindset for one moment. You must believe the Bible to be the Word of God, and all that is within it, to be true. If you are not able to accept that for a few moments, then you will not be able to accept what I have typed. However, if you can believe for a moment that the Bible is the Word of God, you can easily argue that a loving God would never send people to burn in hell for eternity. Which could be a valid argument. But I ask that you do not take it at face value, but that you dig deeper within the Word to have a better understanding of it. First, we cannot truly understand all aspects of Hell, God, eternity, etcÖ. Our minds are not able to understand it completely. However, if we can begin to understand parts of it, I believe we can get past our hang-ups on turn-or-burn, and can begin to understand that Hell is a justified place, that a loving God has set up for non-believers. (Think Iím burying myself pretty deep, huh?)
1) Who likes Hell?
I donít think anyone can say that they like the whole notion of Hell. I personally donít. And just because I am ďsavedĒ does not mean I can breathe a sigh of relief and be all happy about it. I have friends and family that do not believe in God. It is uncomfortable to think that one of my best friends in the world could spend eternity in Hell. I donít like that one bit, and it hurts. How can God take someone and send him or her to Hell just because they have doubts? They are a normal human being who wants to believe, but cannot get past certain elements, so now they are being punished for eternity? But God doesnít like Hell either. He created Hell as a place for those who did not want to follow Him. You are given a life that God took the time to create. A life that He gave His only Son for, that died on the cross because of everything we have done. He only wants you to trust Him, but your whole life you reject Him. However God doesnít create a life and a soul for 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, or even 80 years only to have it go away. He created it for eternity. He wanted each person and each life to last forever. God wants everyone to join Him in Heaven, but for those who reject Him their entire life, He gives them an alternative. But if itís an alternative, letís dig a little deeper into what Hell really is.
2) Hell, the Torture Chamber?
Weíve all heard this before. Either you get ďsavedĒ or you will burn in Hell in complete agony forever and ever. Turn Or Burn. Scary thought, and used a lot over the centuries as a method to scare people into getting saved. So if God is a loving God, how can He sit there and let someone burn in fire while screaming out in pain? I certainly couldnít do that to someone, and I wouldnít think Jesus would throw someone on a fire just because they believe differently. So how does this all make sense?
- A) Separation from God Ė If you ask anyone who is very religious the worst thing that could happen to him or her, they would say separation from God. When you believe in God with all of your heart, and you donít feel his presenceÖit is truly torture. Not being able to hear God or do what you feel He wants you to do is devastating. If you give up everything just to follow Him, the last thing you want is for Him not to be there by your side. That is torture. Hell is a place that no believer would ever want to go to, because they would be eternally separated from God. When you are saved, God is suppose to be more important to you than anything or anyone here on earth. Many of us have been in relationships that are one-sided. You love someone or care about someone so much, but he or she just doesnít seem to care. That is painful. That is torture. It is more painful than any physical pain you can imagine. In fact many of us try physical pain with the hope that it will make the deeper emotional pain go away. Having your heart ripped out is the hardest thing most of us go through. Hell is the worst thing a believer could ever go through. It is torture, a separation from God.
- B) Various Physical (?) Aspects of Hell
- 1) Flames Ė For a moment you have to forget your reality of things. Actually, go ahead and keep your reality for a moment. Hell is full of flames. Now imagine that for a moment. Imagine Hell burning bright with flames. But Hell is also described as a place of utter darkness. Major contrast to one another. You cannot have flames burning all over the place and have complete darkness too. Flames are related to torture. When we think of being burned, we think of utter torture. Itís a relational aspect that gives us an understanding of the torture (see Separation from God). Fire in the afterlife, doesnít necessarily mean that same thing as we know it. Hebrews 12:29 say that God is a consuming fire. You donít find many people who say that God is really on fire though. It means He is a God of Judgment.
- 2) Worms Ė Back in the time of Jesus, animals were sacrificed every week in the temple, and there was a sewage system for the blood to flow outside, and it gathered into a pool. Worms were all inside this pool, ingesting what was in it. It was a disgusting place. Hell is a place more disgusting than this pool of blood with worms crawling throughout it. Itís a metaphor.
- 3) Gnashing teeth Ė This is a description of a state of anger or realization of great loss. A rage at realizing one has made a huge mistake. You find gnashing of teeth in many parables throughout the Bible. I won't go deeper into this unless someone wants me to.
3) Identical Punishment for All?
How can it possibly be fair that someone who just has doubts receives the same punishment as say, a Devil worshipper? Thatís not a just God, if that is the case. Even we as humans understand that. But that is not the case. Revelations 22:12 & 13 And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the thrown, and books were opened. Another book was opened, which is the book of life. The dead were judged according to what they had done as recorded in the books. The sea gave up the dead that were in them and each person was judged according to what he had done. In Matthew 11:20 Ė 24 it also talks about the how different cities would be judged differently because of their actions. A Just God would have to be fair in punishing people according to what they have done. That is exactly what is done. Itís not simply a heads or tails, turn or burn, type of thing. Each and every person is judged according to what they have done.
So we only have a few years to make up our mind that will shape our destination for eternity. You screw up one thing and then for eternity you live with those consequences? Well actually, yes. But donít get hung up on this. God gave His Son to the world, but He surrounds us with people to tell us about it. He gives us churches to go to, libraries to look at books, and the Internet to explore deeper into. We canít say that we donít have the opportunity to learn about God. He tells us that he created us for eternity. Itís not like He is hiding anything. We either choose to believe it, or we donít. He took the time to create each one of us. He molded each of us differently and all He asks is that we believe in and trust in Him. Thatís it. However if we constantly reject Him and just ignore Him and everything He does, what else can He do? He gives us multiple chances throughout life to turn to Him, not just one single opportunity. He gives us so many chances throughout life. Some of us see things or live through things that are unbelievable, and we think that only God could have saved us. He just showed you His power and mercy, and yet you still do not want to believe in Him. He may have sent someone to your door to tell you about Him. He may have put this feeling in your heart that you need Him. He gives us opportunities to turn to Him. If we wonít even take the time to see what is the truth, we are cheating ourselves. It may be the fear of spending eternity in the burning Hell that motivates some to want to know for sure if God is real or not. We all have brains, we all have resources, and we can all decide if God is true or not. If you simply ask Him to prove Himself to you, I assure you He will. Even I have done this very thing. He had to prove Himself to me, and after that, I would be wrong to turn my back on Him. Jesus said, ďLove the Lord your God with all your heart and with all of your soul, and with all your strength and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as yourself.Ē God just wants us to love Him like He loves us. We either choose to love Him forever or we donít. Itís not like we donít have an opportunity to know the truth. He wants us to just believe and trust in Him. He wants us to spend eternity with Him. He pleads and shows you His mercy time and time again. He puts people in your life to show you the truth. What more can He do? When you take that leap of faith, He shows more and more of Himself. He proves Himself more and more, but you have to want that. When you have a close friend, and trust builds, you find each giving more and more of themselves to the relationship. But it never starts off that way. However God does exactly that. He start off by giving life, but giving possessions, family, friends, etcÖ before we give Him back anything. He is a friend to us long before we ever are to Him. And He does this so he can spend eternity with us. What more could he possibly do to be looked at as fair, Just, and loving?
5) Forced to Go to Heaven
So back to the statement that God hates Hell. So if God hates Hell why doesnít he just force everyone to go to Heaven? If He did that, God would not be a loving and Just God. God is like any parent. They have to let their children make their own decisions and live their life the way they choose to live it. Have you ever seen one of those parents that force their child to do everything the parent wants them to do? What do you think about these types of parents? He tries to guide each of us, but He wonít force you to follow and obey Him. He will remind you of Him and step into your life occasionally to let you know He is there, but the ultimate decision is up to you. That is a moral thing to do. Every time the government steps up and limits what we are allowed to do, and takes away our choices of free will, everyone cries and complains about it because it is unfair for them to do that. God doesnít do that. He tells you the way it is (just), He is unchanging in what he wants (love), and He lets you decide from there what you want to do (fair). He is a fair, loving, and a Just God.
The above is my argument that God is who He and the Bible says He is. He is a loving God who gives each of us a choice. He wants each of us to spend eternity in Heaven with Him, but he does not force anyone to do anything they want to do. We can either spend eternity with Him or we spend eternity away from Him. He gives us the resources to learn and research more, and we can always ask Him to show us the truth (you would be surprised what happens when we do that). Hell is a place of complete separation from God, which I would consider to be torture. It is beyond our understanding of every aspect of Hell. Our knowledge is limited, and since I have only recommitted my life back to Christ a mere 6 or 7 months now, I realize I have much more understanding that I have yet to learn. I am merely expressing my view of this phenomenon of Hell, as I see it today. I can only hope that in time I understand more of this subject and all aspects of life related to God. With everything I have come to learn and know about Hell to this point, I feel that Hell is a Just place. It is a place where those who live their life and do not want to follow God, can do just that for eternity. They never have to be around Him again. Hell and Heaven are not necessarily physical places like what we live in. I donít know what it is exactly, but our souls go there. So the pain and torture that we think of in a physical sense, is not the same thing. How else could we begin to understand it though, unless it was described to us in that way?
04-09-2004, 06:23 PM #29Originally Posted by PTbyJason
Jason, I hate to say it, but this guy gets off to the wobbliest of starts as I've ever seen. First, (1) he says that the reader has to already beleive the Bible to be the Word of God for what he says to make sense. So . . . he is actually writing to the already converted who will have an inclination to go along with whatever he has to say on the subject. For certain, he is not writing to unbeleivers like me.
Then, he says (2) "If I can beleive for a moment that the Bible is the Word of God . . ." to which I can only say that no "just decides to beleive" anything; before a rational, thinking, analytical mind accepts something as true, it needs to be presented with persuasive evidence, and then after the mind accepts something as true, it requires another body of persuasive evidence to convince it that it is untrue before the mind can change its opinion again.
No, never does a rational mind just decide to beleive something one minute and then decide not to beleive it another moment later.
I'm going to read this anyway, more out of curiousity, I suppose, than anything else. I am disappointed, though . . . I thought you'd have something convincing . . . but even the guy who wrote this article admits it won't make sense to non-beleivers accustomed to, um, more substantial and more convincing arguments/evidence.
I'm also disappointed that you have to rely on someone else's thinking/writing to answer my criticism on this point. The Bible says that even if you live a selfless life devoted to taking care of the poor and hungry, if you do not beleive a certain way, then you deserve (and will get) eternal Hellfire. But if the vilest of human vermin were to repent and accept Jesus on his deathbed, then despite his years of wickedness and destruction, he would get to go the Heaven forever and ever. Well, it doesn't take a genius to see that that sort of morality plainly sucks. And it doesn't take a genius to see how that sort of morality could have been developed by unscrupulous Church leaders to gain control over both the general population and political leaders . . . Anyway, I had hoped you would have noticed that, and maybe had the independance of thought to come up with an explanation on your own . . .
Nah, the Bible's morality stinks worse than a ton of dead salmon after a week on a hot parking lot.
But, ya, I'll read the rest of the article, for what it's worth . . . but the writer sure didn't get off to much of a beginning . . .
04-09-2004, 07:34 PM #30
I find the more times I hear opinions from the christians I run across the more I come to the decision that, even if God turns out to be true, ..... f*ck him, the arrogant bast*ard. I'll be in hell with Lucifer.
Anyone read the comic book series "Preacher"?
04-10-2004, 02:24 AM #31
These posts are getting too lengthy...
Biggest Prophecies/Inconsistencies with J.C.
- Did not save the Jews, destruction of Temple and Temple Judaism shortly after his death. Start of Diaspora and horrible persecution of Jews and Christians alike.
- Is purported to be God (Greek/Pagan Adaptation). Anathema to monotheism and Judaism especially.
This doesn't even begin to scratch the surface of the inconsistencies of Paul's writings.
04-10-2004, 02:27 AM #32Originally Posted by Tock
Secular Humanism did a lot for people in the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany didn't it?
04-10-2004, 07:55 AM #33
Whether the film was accurate or not it doesnt really matter. God sent his only son to redeem us of our sins. The church on the other is a human institution which is not perfect. Through the centuries the Church was the voice of god on earth which it used for its own benefit and purpose. Whatever the case i can go on and on about church conspiracies etc. etc. ALA da vinci code but i will not.
I beleive that to be a good christian, we do not have to necessarily go t church etc. etc. Jesus pretty much summed it up when he said that there is a church in every human being. what he meant was as long as are good person, not necessarily catholic, treat others the way we want to be treated then we are all worthy of salvation. ST. Ignatius of Loyola said, "love thy neighbor as thyself" that pretty much summed up Jesus' ministry on earth.
04-10-2004, 07:23 PM #34Originally Posted by MMC78
More than Hitler's and Stalin's dictatorial excesses did.
Give me Secular Humanism any day over theocracy, dictatorship, the the Republican Party of Texas.
04-10-2004, 08:36 PM #35Originally Posted by Tock
04-11-2004, 04:53 PM #36Originally Posted by MMC78
Actually, I can't think of any country that was ever secular. When you get right down to it, human beings make lousy neighbors.
04-11-2004, 06:13 PM #37Originally Posted by PTbyJason
Jason, I'm still chewing on your post; I haven't forgotten about it.
While I'm chewing, can you clear up a few points for me?
1) What is Hell like? I don't expect a detailed description, just its general properties . . . like is it eternal? is it painful? will it always be painful? Will the pain be physical or emotional? If the pain is mostly emotional, then IYHO, is there much difference, morally speaking, in inflicting emotional pain over physical pain?
2) If punishment in Hell is supposed to be eternal, why should it be considered "moral" for God to subject a moral human to millions upon billions of unending ages of any sort of pain in retribution for a mere 70 years of human life spent in honest doubt (or even for 70 years of deliberately ignoring God?)?
3) The fate of infidels is described one way in Revelations, as you mentioned. I hadn't checked yet, but are there other accountings of what happens to infidels given in the Bible?
4) If you had your choice between a universe with a god as described in the Christian Bible, and a universe without, where you could make independant choices on your own and live with the consequenses, and fear no divine repercussions whatsoever, which would you choose?
Thanx, it's a lot to chew on . . .
04-12-2004, 09:12 AM #38Originally Posted by Tock
04-12-2004, 10:50 AM #39Originally Posted by Tock
1) 1) What is Hell like? I donít think anyone can tell you exactly detail for detail what Hell is like. I really donít think anyone can truly comprehend it. My post was somewhat a description, but I will answer your more specific questions. Is it eternal? Yes, the Bible tells us that both Hell and Heaven are eternal. Is it painful (always)? Yes, it will be painful and I think it will always be painful. But the amount of pain and the type of pain is what I donít think anyone completely understands. I would definitely think it would be emotionally painful. And to me, that would seem to be the deepest pain. (What I am about to say is just my own thoughts, not intending to scare people. Iím just trying to express it and the only way I can do it is to put myself in the situation. Itís going to look like a typical turn or burn type speech, but I canít think how else to explain it). If I were in Hell, I would be thinking back over the times in my life that I did not give God a chance. I would remember the times I was invited to church and did not go. Or read something and just blocked it out. Or tried to ignore God with the hope that He wasnít real. I would think about my mistakes over my lifetime and wonder why I didnít change at various times in my life. I think I would spend eternity just thinking about what could have been. I personally think that would be the most painful part for me. (Thatís all of that) Again, touching on the physical pain, I donít think we understand that totally. I certainly donít. But letís twist one thing around. Letís pretend we are God. So you create this human being. Made this person for a specific purpose and love this person tremendously. However, their whole life they ignore you, they curse you, and they wonít even try to find out who you are. No matter whom you bring into their life to tell them about you, they just donít want to hear it and they try their best to tune you out. For years no matter what you do, they just donít want to hear about you or what you did for them. Now you took the time to make this person and you arenít going to just destroy your hard work. So you create a place of isolation for them. A place they never have to be with you or acknowledge you ever again. Is that fair? You see, two people are hurt in this situation. Not just the human, but God as well. Both suffer for eternity, but at the same time, the human is allowed to spend eternity without God just like they lived their life. So my question is, in the endÖÖ.who really suffers? Is it the human, who chooses not to learn about God and chooses to ignore Him, and for eternity never has to acknowledge Him, or is it God, who created the life, gets rejected over and over, and eventually gives the person eternal separation from Him? (That kind of answers the last question in the first section.)
2) 2) I kind of hit on this with the last part that I typed, but let me go a little further. Would it be moral for God to force someone who doesnít want to acknowledge Him to be with Him? No It would be immoral to force someone to love Him and be with Him. Would it be moral for God to destroy someone that He created? No, I donít think that would be fair either. Imagine this. There is this person that gets all of the attention no matter where he goes. You completely get overlooked no matter what. Now imagine being stuck with them for the rest of your life. No matter what happens, no matter what you do, no matter what you say, he gets all of the attention and all of the thanks for what you do. Would you be more miserable if you were forced to be with this person all the time or if you could live forever without ever having to be near this person?
3) 3) I need to read more on this to answer your question. I honestly donít think they are judged until the end times, but I might be wrong. I havenít seen anything that tells of the exact punishment though. Iím sorry I donít have more info on this right now, but if anyone else knows, feel free to answer this question.
4) 4) Kind of a loaded question there? LOL Let me put it another way and you can decide. Would you rather have a best friend that is always there to protect you, love you, guide you, and forgive you when you screw up, or go alone to make your own decisions and always look out for yourself? Let me show you a bit of history that tells everything. 8/9/03 I made a post that I had accomplished everything in my life that I ever wanted to accomplish on my own (#10 on my list). Absolutely, 100% true. I wanted God to be in my life more (#5), but I wanted to make my own decisions and do my own thing. I made things in my life happen. I was living my life, my way. It wasnít a good life though. I looked for happiness in a variety of things but never found it. I got into drugs for a while in my life, I slept around some, etcÖ. I was a ďgood guyĒ. I wasnít robbing banks or anything, but no matter what I did, I just never found happiness. But you know what, I accomplished everything I wanted to accomplish. My life is different now bro. It honestly is. The last few months of my life have been unlike any in my life. I donít need ďthingsĒ or people to make me happy. I have begun to find happiness in some of the simplest things in life. I am finally able to start listening to God. I found that all of those things I was doing to make myself happy were just making me more miserable. All of the selfish things I did for myself, turned out to be counterproductive to what I was trying to do (finding happiness). Afterlife or no afterlife, I couldnít be happier right now. Itís not always easy, Iím not trying to say that, but I am happy. I have this peace in my life that I canít explain. So just in quality of life on earth in general, I love this life. Things that come in my life where I feel like God is involved is another layer. Itís amazing to see things happen that there is no explanation for besides God. Things I never dreamed of and never thought were possible. Some of shared, many I havenít. Some are just too remarkable for most people to believe. But thereís nothing like waking up and wondering what could happen today that you never dreamed of. Itís a great feeling. I canít describe Heaven, but if I can feel like I have at some of the best moments in the last few months, it will be amazing. The times I described as ďnot always easyĒ are even great. When I look back over my life and look at the hardest times in my life, I find that in the end they made me a better or stronger person. They were bad at the moment, but I see the benefit in them eventually. The bad things that have come into my life over the previous few months, I accepted much easier. I didnít struggle with them near as much. I basically just trust that there is a reason and a purpose for it. I start praying asking for help/support, and ask to see the reason for it. Within no time the things I am going through are gone. And I see verses in my daily reading that just seem to apply so well to my experience. Or the pastor will preach a service that is dealing so closely with my experience that it is scary. So even my worst times seem great to me because I donít suffer as much as in the past and I learn my lesson from it almost immediately instead of months later down the road. Itís a wonderful life that I wish I had years ago.
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