Screw ‘Society’

Society tells us that it’s not polite to talk about God when you are with family and friends. Why is that?  What could possibly be more interesting than how we will spend eternity? We spend more time talking about our next vacation, the kids’ dental hygiene, or the crap on TV, by a very large margin. I can understand if you don’t believe in God and don’t want to dwell on your ultimate demise. But, as believers we should know with some level of certainty that eternal paradise – the home which we were created for – awaits for us once we leave this world.  I mean, shouldn’t we all be jacked up about that?

So what I figure is that there is some level of doubt we have that forbids us believers a truly, deep down in our heart certainty, like knowing that your feet will hit the floor when you get out of bed in the morning.  If you definitely knew that salvation awaits you as a statement of fact, wouldn’t that change the way you lived your life? You would at a minimum want to talk about it with someone – right?

Let me tell you, the more I study the more my own belief becomes a statement of fact to me, and I would like to talk about it. Even if it means just writing on this blog – whether you read it or not – whether you respond to it or not. It’s just that important to me – certainly more important than anything else I might be doing when I do sit down to write. So regardless of what ‘society’ might think, let’s talk about it like it is our destiny, like it’s going to happen, like the trip to Disney, or the dentist appointment – because the more we do talk about it the less we will doubt it…What do you think?

Comments

  1. Bryan says:

    I went back and read your original post to make sure I hadn’t wandered to far from the topic. By now you probably know that I have a perspective not shared by the majority, (but a few) not that the majority in the Bible was ever right about anything. As of yet you haven’t hit me with any tough questions and I’ve been picking apart your reply’s, I just want to make sure you understand that it is never my intention to offend or make anyone feel bad about a position they take. Sometimes I get in a debate mode and My wife says I can sound a little mean some times….that’s why I put those smiley faces in once in a while…..anyway to the DEBATE!!:)

    To your last reply: “I don’t find myself hoping for either, just for God’s will to be done…and am trusting more that He meant what He said…”

    So what is God’s will?
    2 Peter 3:9 “…not willing that any should perish
    1 Tim 2:4 Who wants all men to be saved

    That is what the Bible says and since we say we believe what is says, we will have to say God’s will is the salvation of all men.

    Will His will be done?

    Isaiah 46:10 …I will do all that I please..
    1 Tim 4:9-10 This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance (and for this we labor and strive) that we have put our hope in the living God who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe.

    Psalm 145:9 The Lord is good to ALL 10. ALL you have made will praise you 13. …loving towards ALL He has made. 14. The Lord up holds ALL those who fall 16 …satisfy the desires of every living thing 17. …loving towards ALL he has made 21. …let every creature praise his holy name for ever.

    If you read the whole psalm v.20 says…but all the wicked he will destroy.? So that must mean that all are not saved…right? Even though it is easy to find 75 verses that show that God will save all…the fact that other verses seem to say that some will be destroyed must render these …verses not true…?

    Like Matt 7:13 A passage that is often pointed too as one that shows that most of God’s children will burn for all etermity.

    I’m sure you believe that the Bible does not contradict it’s self, which begs the question; If the Bible seemingly gives two statements (which it does not, but for the sake of the argument) if there are passages that clearly say God will save all and others that “seem” to show, not all will be saved, WHY do most choose to believe that most will not be saved??? Even worse, believe that God will fry his children (everyone is his offspring Acts 17:28) like a side of bacon for all eternity???

    This is where I believe we need to actually get our brain involved and not just go on faith. If something doesn’t make sense it is our duty and honor to seek out (Proverbs 25:2) the truth until we find it.

    So what do we have? Passages that say all will be saved and others that say people will be destroyed. For me than the passages that say all will be saved are clear, I look at the word destroy and see what I can find.

    The word “destroy” is the same word used for lost and we know that Jesus came to save the lost. Luke 19:10

    One verse that pops into my mind is 1 Sam 2:6 God brings death and makes alive. Death is no barrier to God. We know that all will be resurrected, 1 Cor 15:20-28 says is best for me, as well as much of the good news in a nut shell.

    I don’t know if I have made any kind of case for ALL being saved and this may be where faith comes in. Dear God, I don’t know whether you will save everyone or burn most for all eternity, but..your will be done…I’m fine with both…? Really? Friends, family….billions of people, tormented for eternity, this is the best that God could come up with?

    Hear is the Good News! With God all things are possible. His plan from the beginning was for his children to learn what it means to be a child of God, which included the fall. Name a virtue that you have learned that wasn’t learned because of suffering, doubt-hope, fear-peace, hate-love, covet-contentment and on and on…?

    Yes, God saved everyone through Jesus dieing on the cross. Jesus said: Father forgive “them”, the “them” is everybody! All of our sins were there.

    I could go on for hours and hours with dozen and dozen of scriptures that say; we have been atoned for, our sins are not held agianst us, we have been bought, we have been reconciled, Jesus came not to judge the world but to save it. That Jesus is the savior of the world, agian, on and on and on.

    Come as you are, and follow Jesus.

    Yes. There is judgment but not from some whacked out creek god, The Father’s judgments teaches righteousness. It is better to repent now but one way or another all rebellion will be removed from all that has ever lived. That is God’s desire and He will do it.

    Think of it, I bring you good news that will be for ALL the people, a Savior has been born to you which is Christ the Lord!!!!

    Merry Christmas RT

    p.s. Matt 8:29 says Son of God, not Lord post 12,12 6:52, 1 Cor 12:3 says no one can say Jesus is Lord, except by the Holy Spirit.

    “So I guess by saved we would have to mean – saved us from a time when we had no choice in our own eternal destiny…For those who hear the message, Christ offers us the choice”.

    You need to explain this a little bit more for me.

    WOW…sorry…once I get rolling…I have to force myself to quit

    Bryan

    1. RT says:

      (SORRY ABOUT THE CAPS – BUT I STARTED IN CAPS AND JUST KEPT ROLLING.)

      JUST NOW GETTING BACK TO THIS POST – FIRST, I DID NOT THINK WE WERE HAVING A DEBATE…NOT SURE WE ARE VERY FAR FROM ONE ANOTHER TO SAY ONE IS RIGHT AND ONE IS WRONG…HOW ARE WE TO KNOW THE MIND OF GOD? AND HOW ARE WE TO SUMMARIZE IT ALL IN JUST A FEW WORDS? I HAVE BEEN TRYING TO PUT TOGETHER A BRIEF SLIDE SHOW SORT OF LIKE ‘SALVATION HISTORY FOR DUMMIES’ – MOSTLY FOR MY OWN BENEFIT TRYING TO MAKE IT AS SIMPLE AS POSSIBLE BECAUSE THAT IS HOW MY MIND WORKS…LIKE BULLET POINTS…ANYWAY I THINK WE CAN SEE HIS INTENTIONS FROM THE VERY BEGINNING. GOD’S INTENTION IS TO COMMUNE IN FELLOWSHIP WITH MANKIND – ALL MANKIND. GOD IS LOVE. LOVE IS RELATIONSHIP. WHEN GOD CREATED MAN HE CREATED A RELATIONSHIP THAT WENT BEYOND THAT OF THE TRINITY. A LOVING RELATIONSHIP BASED UPON THE FREE WILL CHOICE OF EACH PARTY, BECAUSE ANY OTHER RELATIONSHIP IS REALLY NOT WORTH HAVING.

      IN SHORT, GOD’S INTENTION AND HIS WILL HAS NOT CHANGED. IT IS STILL THE SAME: TO COMMUNE WITH HIS CREATION. BUT AS HIS FREE-WILLED CREATIONS WE DETERMINED AT SOME POINT THAT WE DID NOT NEED GOD – THAT WE COULD DISOBEY HIM AND SET UP OURSELVES AS GOD. THIS IS THE SIN OF SATAN. AT ITS CORE ALL SIN IS SEPARATION FROM GOD AND IS THE ROOT OF OUR OF ALIENATION FROM GOD, AND THE ULTIMATE ALIENATION FROM GOD IS PROBABLY THE BEST DEFINITION OF HELL – TOTAL SEPARATION – LONELINESS, PAIN, FEAR, HATRED, DESOLATION, DIS-EASE, DEATH.

      SALVATION IS GOD’S PLAN TO GET US ALL BACK TO WHERE HE ALWAYS INTENDED EACH OF US TO BE – WITH HIM IN PARADISE – LOVE, PEACE, COMFORT, ABUNDANCE, BUT WE KEEP ON SCREWING UP THE COVENANTS WITH OUR FREE-WILL DISOBEDIENCE. AS PARTY TO THESE EARLY HEBREW COVENANTS – IT REQUIRES THAT WE HOLD UP OUR END OF THE BARGAIN. AND WE CAN’T BECAUSE WE ARE IMPERFECT SINNERS AND NO MAN BORN OF THIS WORLD IS SO PERFECT THAT HE CAN UPHOLD ALL 600 PLUS COMMANDMENTS OF THE OLD TESTAMENT. THIS IS TO TEACH US THAT OUR SALVATION, OUR COMMUNION WITH GOD WAS NEVER UP TO US BUT ALWAYS GOD’S WILL. WE DO HOWEVER NEED TO MAKE THE DECISION TO ACCEPT THE OFFER. SO THE ONLY ACTION ON OUR PART THAT DETERMINES OUR SALVATION IS OUR DECISION TO ACCEPT GOD;S GRACE…WHICH IS OFFERED TO ALL OF US THAT HEAR THE GOSPEL.

      I AM NOT DOING A GOOD JOB IN LAYING THIS OUT…TAKE 20 MINUTES AND WATCH THIS VIDEO FROM CREFLO DOLLAR – http://player.multicastmedia.com/player.php?v=uzmo7760 – THE LINK IS ALSO IN OUR RESOURCE SECTION – CREFLO DOLLAR MINISTRIES – LOOK OCTOBER 2 BROADCAST — ALSO HAVE YOU EVER READ MERE CHRISTIANITY? – CHECK OUT CHAPTER 4 OF BOOK 2 – THE PERFECT PENITENT.THE LINK IS ALSO IN OUR RESOURCE SECTION….AND I WILL WORK ON THE BULLET POINT VERSION…RT

      1. Bryan says:

        Listened to Dollar-not bad, doesn’t go far enough.
        Read Norman-It was fine-I think I read some of his work 20-30 years ago, may have become a universalist.

        Copied your last post and am jotting notes on it at work. (on breaks)

        For now I just feel like saying; as this may be the biggest lie out there, is this notion that we have free will. I’m wondering if this thought isn’t “the beast that sits on throne in the temple
        “?. (we are the temple)

        One question then off to work.

        Did God know before He created me, whether I would go to hell and if He did, is there anything I can do to change that? (you know I don’t believe in Hell)

        1. RT says:

          Hi – My concern here is that we have opened a lot of cans that all deserve discussion which I am happy to do, but let’s try to go one at a time…

          As far as Creflo Dollar – He goes far enough if you listen to the entire series of talks via the website link in resources.

          I don’t know who Norman is – if you are referring to the Mere Christianity chapter by C.S. Lewis I recommended – I am impressed that you read the book 30 years ago. It still is the source for me when it comes to explaining Christian beliefs.

          As far as hell, which one of the scriptural references to hell gives you a problem – knowing that some portions of the bible are to be taken literally while some are literary devices…I have come to understand hell to mean complete and utter (and most likely self-imposed) alienation from God whether it be on this earth or elsewhere. YOu can fill in the imagery of what that might mean.

          As far as our pre-destiny – who is to say? I don’t concern myself too much with things that I can not possibly know. I do know that the bible is where I should be looking for any answers that I am seeking…and what I find in Eph. 2:8-10 tells me what God has done is created in advance good works for me to do – so ‘that’ is my destiny.

          1. Bryan says:

            Yes, you are right, a lot of topics have been touched upon each deserving it’s own post…and more. This isn’t the best form for back and forth…maybe we should concentrate on writing some more posts.

            Like you, I write mostly for my owm benifit to help get my belief ducks in a row. I do this on my little blog called “the last enemy” (areavoices.com). Here I must confess I am barely computer liturate, so my blog is pretty simple. It took me an hour just to figure out how to change my header.

            I can tell by your site that you have good computer skills…I should take a class or something…anyway.

            whoops, must have Peale on the brain (Norman).

            I will try to answer your question: “As far as hell, which one of the scriptural references to hell gives you a problem”?

            First I would say none of the supposed references to Hell have anything to do with a Hell as discribed by most today.

            Sheol: translated hell is simply the grave or realm of the dead, a place where everyone goes when he is dead.

            Hades: is the greek equivalent

            Gehenna: (translated Hell) Is the Greek for “valley of the son of Hinnom”. In Jesus’ time this valley was a garbage dump where all the imagery comes from and in old testament time is where isrealites burn there children to molech, which God says never entered His mind to do.

            Tartarus: (translated hell) a condition of constraint.

            The rich man and lazarus is a parable. (not literally true)
            One verse I never get a response to when talking about this story is Matt 13:34 which says as clearly as can be stated that Jesus only talked to the people in parables and in no other way did he speak to them. Then I will ask them, is this story literal or a parable………?

            Fires, furnace, outer darkness, judgements, lost, perish, destroyed, eternal torment,
            etc.

            God does not cast off forever.

            Hell is not taught in the Bible my Friend…God is billions and billions of times better than the churches teach. God never gives up on us. He searches for the lost until he finds us..not the other way around (parable of the lost sheep). When Jesus was lifted up he drew all people to himself. (John 12:32) While we were enemies we were reconciled (Romans 5:10) on and on.

            Perhaps one word that would change peoples minds on alot of this is the word “eternity” which is never used in the bibe but should be “age”. (another topic)

            Bryan

  2. Bryan says:

    Ok, now were getting a little deeper.
    I have union grievances and policy negotiations going on at work right now which is using up a lot of my brain power, but I will defently respond within a day or two to your latest reply, this is the stuff I love to talk about.

    For now I will leave you with a question- You are leaning towards B, do you hope it is B?

    1. RT says:

      I don’t find myself hoping for either, just for God’s will to be done…and am trusting more that He meant what He said…

  3. Bryan says:

    So….
    You say that Jesus saved all, then you say millions of christians have no clue as to their salvation status.
    By “saved all” do you mean (A) all, everybody who has ever lived all and will enter God’s kingdom some day or (B) Jesus saved all but not all will be saved?

    1 Tim 4:10 That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, especially those that believe.

    1John 4:14 and we have seen and testify, that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.

    I mean (A)

    Which is the meaning of Phil “9 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
    10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
    11 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

    A or B 🙂

    1. RT says:

      I am leaning more towards B in that it is not possible for me to know for sure (faith fills that gap), and I do not know what God has in store for those that have never heard of Jesus. The offer of salvation is on the table to all who hear it, some will not take up the offer:

      Matt 7:13 – Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.

      As far as Phil 9 – Even satan and his demons acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord. So acknowledgement and even saying it doesn’t guarantee communion with God – living it does.

      “What have you to do with us, O Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?”—Matthew 8:29

      So I guess by saved we would have to mean – saved us from a time when we had no choice in our own eternal destiny…For those who hear the message, Christ offers us the choice.

  4. RT says:

    I see I am going to have to be careful as to how I word my responses with you – but that is OK – because it is important. Yes Jesus has saved us all – our job would be to let others know that – not everyone understands that…there are millions of self proclaimed ‘christians’ that have no clue as to their salvation status – many think it is still up to them – “if I do this, then this is what will happen”…Many still need to understand that salvation is already theirs, they just need to accept it, believe it for themselves and live accordingly…that is what we do, help others to understand the good news. .

    So, I don’t think I would used the word preach – because I am no preacher. More like – correct a misunderstanding? Or undoing satan’s great lie? And if we are to ‘be like Christ’, preaching once you have established yourself as a credible source is not always a bad thing…as long as preaching is not your only Christ-like character…RT

    .

  5. Bryan says:

    I’m new to this site so I am going through some of the older post.
    This one struck a familiar cord, I like to talk about God but I find that few Christians that I know really do. Some get defensive if you challenge….anything….and I question everything….which may be part of the problem also. Some don’t really know the bible that well but they know church and that’s good enough for them. Some know the Bible real well (a pastor friend) but again I disagree with most everything he says…..I guess it’s me 🙂
    If you ever want to talk God, I’m always game….but I questions…everything 🙂
    Bryan

    1. RT says:

      Bryan – Ultimately we are taught to trust God – Proverbs 3:5-6 says, ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him,
      and he will make your paths straight…’ But I am also the type that needs to know how it all fits together – I need to reconcile any loose ends – which led me to start to dig deeper into the Bible. I started a Bible a study class with an expert (listed in the our Resources section) in the history and culture of the times and it really has helped a great deal – to the point where I am now convinced of the truth that is the word of God. It really becomes a personal journey – each one of us determining the point at which we abandon our search for material proof of God and simply trust in His word…I wish that I could be the type of person that comes to believe strictly from faith, but now understand that coming to believe is what matters and not so much how…RT

      1. Bryan says:

        Hey RT!
        “Ultimately were are taught to trust God” -True, but it is God that teaches….we have to be careful when listening to “experts”. It is never right to except something we don’t understand as truth, and until we understand we can’t put any hope in it. It is he, the Spirit of truth, that guides us into all the truth John16:13

        Isaiah 1:18 “come let us reason together…” Acts 17:11 “……they received the word with all readiness of mind….” Proverbs 3:13 (a little further down from v.5) Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding”.

        Proverbs 3:5
        I don’t believe it is ever suggested that we should in any way check are brains at the doors of “trust”. a question from this verse;
        Can I have an understanding which isn’t mine? Yes, an understanding that comes from God and until that understanding comes, it would be a violation of our conscious and a lie to except it as truth. (what ever the subject is)
        Example: Hell, I can ask a hundred question about Hell that most “experts” say they believe in, but the brain will have to be shut off in order to believe what they say on the matter.
        1. Do we believe that God knows the end from the beginning? Yes
        2. Do we believe that God knows before he created me whether or not I was going to Hell?….Yes
        3. Do we believe there is anything we can do to change this known outcome by God?……..No.
        4. If God created me knowing that I was going to Hell, is there anything that I can do to stop from going to Hell?……..?
        5. If there is nothing I can do about it, do I have free will?
        6. If I don’t have free will….am I a robot?
        7. Arminianism? Calvinism? None of thee above?
        Whoa! slow down Bryan.
        Never be one who believes strictly on faith.
        Personnel Journey? You bet.
        What is his word? 🙂
        As long as what we believe is the Truth.

        When I do bible study the question has to be pretty narrow or I’ll never get to the answer.

        Just Ramblin
        Bryan

        1. RT says:

          Yes – God gave us brains so that we can understand – agreed. There will always be a gap in our understanding as long as we are on this earth. That gap is where we insert our trust and faith – we all have different size gaps….I think of it as a moving sum of understanding and faith that always equals 100%…we may start off at 10/90 and stay there or have revelation and move to 20/80 then maybe 50/50…and so on

          And agreed that it is more a spirit of understanding than anything else…things come to me now that I know are not of my own mind…like after reading your last post, this thought came to me – concerning yourself less with how you fit into God’s scheme, and focus more on how you help others come into salvation…focus on what you can do to save others….

          1. Bryan says:

            I don’t want to wear out my welcome, so any time you want to move on, you won’t hurt my feelings. As for me, I seldom get tired of back and forth.

            I can except most of your last post; gaps in understanding, with revelations we understand more, and concerning ourselves more on how to help others move towards God. (I changed that last one a little)

            And sometimes helping a person for no other reason than to help them. I think an argument could be made that many times the command is simply to; feed, clothe, visit etc. not feed and preach, clothe and preach….

            So to your last line…”focus on what you can do to save others…”

            I’m sure you know there is nothing we can do to save others, but we can help them along the way.

            To focus on a topic, a BIG topic, which gets me branded as a heretic (which doesn’t bother me. :))

            Jesus already saved everyone!!

  6. Gasper says:

    I disagree with your assertion that society does not not think it polite to talk about out god when you are with family and friends. I think just the opposite. Society thinks that is the only time you can talk about god is with family and friends. I am comfortable talking to this group because the nature of the relationship allows for these types of discussions.

    I believe that society does not think it polite to talk about god when you are in a business setting or with strangers/acquaintances. I am less comfortable in this setting because of the practical impact of what it does to this less intimate relationship if there is a disagreement. There are several situations where I need to get over it but I am still not convinced that there are not situations where bringing up the subject may do more harm then good.

    1. RT says:

      I guess I was making a generalization – which was a mistake on my part. The point I would like to make is that God should become a larger part of our daily interactions with family, friends, acquaintances and associates…it should be as comfortable a subject as any other. It was at one time in the not so distant past and would help, in my opinion, maintain the perspective that seems to be missing in our daily lives…RT

    2. eizzle says:

      Gasper: Totally know where you are coming from, about bringing up God at work. But we can’t be–and shouldn’t be–afraid to state our values. And not so much so folks know where we stand, but because it’s important that those who believe also feel comfortable expressing their faith. One of my favorite quotes is, “if you don’t stand for something, you’ll fall for anything.” I’m not suggesting at all that we be provocative or in people’s face, but when it comes up, by all means. This happened last week, in fact. We were discussing questions that business coaches should ask their clients and somebody requested I answer, “What is the one thing you should always remember?”; and I responded, “That God loves me, and that he loves all of you, too.”

      1. RT says:

        During the Nixon years there was a term used, ‘the silent majority’. You probably remember it…it seems that is the case here. I have rarely had anyone object whenever I may have worked God into the conversation. In fact, most were almost relieved that it was OK to mention God in the context of what we were discussing….