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post #76 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:20 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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You believe that, and that is fine. Billions of people believe different things. How can someone else know what to believe unless God has spoken to them personally? Why should I go to a church and not a Mosque or a temple to Athena?
You must make up your own mind. As you probably know, the Bible states that Jesus Christ is the ONLY way to God. When I first started reading the Bible, I did have a sense that God was speaking to me from the pages. It was true.

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post #77 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:24 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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They're all wrong, as are you. I can say that as definitively, decisively, and arrogantly as you can about your belief.
Sure you can, you just did.

Yet, the truth is still there. Man can say or do whatever he wants to do, yet God remains the same yesterday, today and forever. You are free to believe what you want to believe.

As for me:

Joshua 24
[15] And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.
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post #78 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:32 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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Sure you can, you just did.

Yet, the truth is still there. Man can say or do whatever he wants to do, yet God remains the same yesterday, today and forever. You are free to believe what you want to believe.

As for me:

Joshua 24
[15] And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD.
Yes, the truth is still there, despite what you or I believe. I happen to THINK the truth is that God is a figment of man's imagination, and nothing more. However, as it is not possible to prove a negative (that God does not exist), the burden of proof is on those who say God does exist. Of course, you can always just say it's a matter of faith, and I'd be happy to leave it at that - unless you want to also convince me that God exists.

Love is an ideal thing; marriage is a real thing; a confusion of the real with the ideal never goes unpunished. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

CELIBACY IS NOT HEREDITARY.
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post #79 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:39 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

@UMP, when my husband and I were still engaged, my dad was asked to preach one Sabbath at church. Now, he wasn't a stranger to doing sermons, and he was even a yeacher/co-teacher for a Sabbath School class. But, when asked this particular time, he was hesitant. Why? The subject was prayer. He really didn't have any clue how to speak in the subject, and he told the person who asked just that. That day, the person's family prayed that dad would have an experience that would help with the sermon.

That evening, my mom, my sister, my fiance, and I were driving to a town about 1.5 hours away. Dad had an overwhelming feeling to pray for us. At that moment, we were hit, head on, by a woman having a seizure. People who drove by honestly thought there would be no survivors. The wreckage was that bad. But we all lived. Mom had a few cracked ribs, sister a bruised midsection, fiance a bruised shin. Only I got the worst... a fractured and dislocated hip, which required a total of three surgeries.

But, dad isn't the only one who learned from this. I can't speak for all involved, but I know I learned a lot. Have I made bad choices since then? I absolutely know I have. But I also have asked to be forgiven. I also understand that to be with Christ, I am to accept Christ as my Savior. But it's not a "one and done" thing, either. I can choose to follow a different path at any time I wish. If I do, then that will separate me from Him. And if I am doing things apart from Him, why would I want to be WITH Him, right? Same thing with those who have lead a poor life... whether lying, cheating, stealing, or even killing. If presented with the Word, and that person truly converts, he is forgiven. God knows the heart, we don't. This is why HE is the One who decides, not us.

On a related note... I can't say this is certain, but it was presented to me, once, that Jesus didn't need to be baptized. He really didn't. Someone once said that He, the Perfect Lamb of God, chose to be baptized as an example for us, and I heard it said that His baptism covers those who cannot make that decision for themselves... or cannot physically take that plunge. This makes sense, to me, because babies cannot make that decision themselves (our church does not baptize anyone who cannot make that decision for themselves, including babies). Some adults are physically unable to do it, too.

Anyway, I only intended to mention about the prayer exanple, because of the exampke about the call in reference to the colonoscopy.

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post #80 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:40 AM
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God: Summing it up

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This is the point of the OP.



Some do not believe in God sitting on a big chair with a beard who sets rules (I do not). Others do not believe in a God that is reality and glimpsed through spirituality and love (though I do). Some believe in neither.



The literalists claim a monopoly on God, even though their belief in bearded God looks more like superstition and idolatory to me. Each to their own.


That is fine of course. Anyone is free to believe what they like. My worry is that we do need to use our rational mind in order for humanity to function and survive. Superstition/mixing up cause & effects is a slippery slope. Imagine someone else's phone ringing with a wrong number and the person concludes that god told them to kill 6 million people for a higher reason only known to god. I mean what's really at the bottom of it and why would it be less logical to conclude this instead, given the right circumstances. People look for signs and patterns but they will conclude whatever they want to conclude. Same with the scripture: they will take from it whatever they want to take and often justify abhorrent actions and killings. History is full of it.
I sometimes think that birds will in fact outsmart and outlive us; even though they are also superstitious, at least they don't have the power to take the whole planet down with them because of voices they might hear in their head.


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post #81 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:47 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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@UMP, when my husband and I were still engaged, my dad was asked to preach one Sabbath at church. Now, he wasn't a stranger to doing sermons, and he was even a yeacher/co-teacher for a Sabbath School class. But, when asked this particular time, he was hesitant. Why? The subject was prayer. He really didn't have any clue how to speak in the subject, and he told the person who asked just that. That day, the person's family prayed that dad would have an experience that would help with the sermon.

That evening, my mom, my sister, my fiance, and I were driving to a town about 1.5 hours away. Dad had an overwhelming feeling to pray for us. At that moment, we were hit, head on, by a woman having a seizure. People who drove by honestly thought there would be no survivors. The wreckage was that bad. But we all lived. Mom had a few cracked ribs, sister a bruised midsection, fiance a bruised shin. Only I got the worst... a fractured and dislocated hip, which required a total of three surgeries.

But, dad isn't the only one who learned from this. I can't speak for all involved, but I know I learned a lot. Have I made bad choices since then? I absolutely know I have. But I also have asked to be forgiven. I also understand that to be with Christ, I am to accept Christ as my Savior. But it's not a "one and done" thing, either. I can choose to follow a different path at any time I wish. If I do, then that will separate me from Him. And if I am doing things apart from Him, why would I want to be WITH Him, right? Same thing with those who have lead a poor life... whether lying, cheating, stealing, or even killing. If presented with the Word, and that person truly converts, he is forgiven. God knows the heart, we don't. This is why HE is the One who decides, not us.

On a related note... I can't say this is certain, but it was presented to me, once, that Jesus didn't need to be baptized. He really didn't. Someone once said that He, the Perfect Lamb of God, chose to be baptized as an example for us, and I heard it said that His baptism covers those who cannot make that decision for themselves... or cannot physically take that plunge. This makes sense, to me, because babies cannot make that decision themselves (our church does not baptize anyone who cannot make that decision for themselves, including babies). Some adults are physically unable to do it, too.

Anyway, I only intended to mention about the prayer exanple, because of the exampke about the call in reference to the colonoscopy.

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So if the unbelievers do not go to Him, where exactly do they end up?

Ps: Sorry to hear about the accident.


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post #82 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:49 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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I never understood this: a serial killer on death row can repent his sins, ask for forgiveness and then enjoy eternity in heaven.

Then a perfectly decent person worshipping the 'wrong' kind of god or not worshipping anything at all is going to automatically spend eternity in hell. Bit unfair if you ask me.
There are some Christian secs who believe what you wrote here. No all do.

For example, Catholics do not believe that the guy who worships the 'wrong' god or does not worships any god will automatically spend eternity in hell.

Further, that serial killer has to do a whole lot more than verbally repent his sins and ask for forgiveness. Only God can forgive sins because only God knows if a person has actually had the enormous shift that would be required for serial killer to really repent.
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post #83 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:56 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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That is because you don't fully understand the concept of a perfect Holy God.

God cannot look upon sin. If a man lived a perfect life and sinned only once, he would be guilty before God. So much so that God had to give up His perfect sinless son as a perfect sacrifice, because it was the ONLY sacrifice that could satisfy God's perfect justice.



He could have just as easily and JUSTLY condemned the entire human race and save none. In fact, God could have punished Adam and Eve on the spot and ended it all there. Instead God chose to show His mercy and grace.


Why didn't he just get rid of the snake before the 'incident'? I always felt it was a bit unfair on the two of them. They were just a little gullible and were set up IMO.
He then wouldn't have had to sacrifice his own son which was also a bit much.


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post #84 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 11:56 AM
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Re: God: Summing it up

Bedazzled 2000 iMDb:

Elliot's Cellmate: She's the devil that one.
Elliot Richards: What?
Elliot's Cellmate: I said she's the devil... that lady cop.
Elliot Richards: Oh... yea. I guess.
Elliot's Cellmate: So what are you in for brother?
Elliot Richards: Eternity
Elliot's Cellmate: Oooo... that's a long time. You must have done some really bad ****.
Elliot Richards: Yea. I sold my soul.
Elliot's Cellmate: Hope you got something good for it.
Elliot Richards: As a matter of fact, I got nothing for it.
Elliot's Cellmate: Well that's a really bad deal if you ask me.
Elliot Richards: Well I'm not asking you.
Elliot's Cellmate: Doesn't really matter, though. Can't sell your soul anyway.
Elliot Richards: Oh, really? Why do you say that?
Elliot's Cellmate: Because it doesn't really belong to you in the first place. No way, no how.
Elliot Richards: So who does it belong to?
Elliot's Cellmate: It belongs to God. That universal spirit that animates and binds all things in existence. The Devil's gonna try to confuse you, that's her game. But in the end, you're gonna see clear to who and what you are, and what you're here to do. Now, you gonna make some mistakes along the way, everybody does. But if you just open up your heart, and open up your mind, you'll get it.
Elliot Richards: ...Who are you?
Elliot's Cellmate: [smiles] Just a friend, brother. Just a really good friend.

Regardless of what I believe in, I love Elliot's Cellmate's description at the end...

नमस्ते
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post #85 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 12:16 PM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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So if the unbelievers do not go to Him, where exactly do they end up?

Ps: Sorry to hear about the accident.


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No need to be sorry about the accident. It was almost 20 years ago. But, thank you.

As for unbelievers... ok, one thing thst differs from my belief and that of other Christian denominations is that many of them believe they will burn in the fires forever. I do not believe that. I mean, how can one enjoy paradise for eternity when hearing the cries of those who are cast into the lake of fire? But, Revelation 21:8 refers to it as the "second death", meaning they will die, not be tormented for all eternity. But, again, my beliefs differ from most mainstream Christian denominations. I do not believe tgat when you die, you go immediately to Heaven or Hell. I believe you are in the grave and will be resurrected when Christ returns. So, at this point, I believe both believers and nonbelievers are in the grave, waiting for His return. I do not believe that loved ones are watching over me, visiting, etc.

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post #86 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 12:18 PM Thread Starter
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Re: God: Summing it up

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No need to be sorry about the accident. It was almost 20 years ago. But, thank you.

As for unbelievers... ok, one thing thst differs from my belief and that of other Christian denominations is that many of them believe they will burn in the fires forever. I do not believe that. I mean, how can one enjoy paradise for eternity when hearing the cries of those who are cast into the lake of fire? But, Revelation 21:8 refers to it as the "second death", meaning they will die, not be tormented for all eternity. But, again, my beliefs differ from most mainstream Christian denominations. I do not believe tgat when you die, you go immediately to Heaven or Hell. I believe you are in the grave and will be resurrected when Christ returns. So, at this point, I believe both believers and nonbelievers are in the grave, waiting for His return. I do not believe that loved ones are watching over me, visiting, etc.

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I think eternity is the key word. I am recalling what I was taught as a child, but eternity is very different from for ever. Kiros rather than kronos. The question is to truely live.
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post #87 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 12:23 PM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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Why didn't he just get rid of the snake before the 'incident'? I always felt it was a bit unfair on the two of them. They were just a little gullible and were set up IMO.
He then wouldn't have had to sacrifice his own son which was also a bit much.


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Better yet, why did God create an angel (satan) that He knew would fall, that He knew would deceive Eve, that He knew would plunge the entire human race into sin and pain?
Actually, God IS and has been forever. Before the world existed, before man existed, GOD IS. Perfectly perfect on His own from all eternity past.

Yet, He decided to make a people, allow them to fall and then give His only PERFECT Son (GOD in the flesh) as a sacrifice to die for a people not worthy of ANY of His mercy. Why??????

Because without sin entering the world, no one would know of God's Love, Mercy and Grace.....not to mention justice.
Man cannot complain. He is doing everything he wants to do. Man, in his natural state wants nothing to do with the God of the Bible.

Mans entire purpose is to glorify God and we will, one way or the other.

Last edited by UMP; 03-15-2017 at 01:46 PM.
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post #88 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 01:06 PM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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3) The existence of Hell, and the concept of being punished for all eternity for a relatively minute lifetime of sin that apparently we're programmed to commit, when God could have chosen to prevent that programming in the first place.
Think of it this way. Let's try to pick one of the most evil men in human history, Hitler.
Hitler, more or less, caused the death of around 60,000,000 people. Even when all was lost he married Eva Braun, then killed her too, and unrepentant to the end. (just an assumption for this example)

Let's say God were to place Hitler in hell for eternity. I would dare say that many sinful humans might stand up and say, "yes, I can see that is just."

Let's now say we have one man who killed one person, and unrepentant to the end.
Some men may even say, "yes, I can see that a murderer in hell is just."

Now, let's think of only a mans mind. He hates. Now we have crossed a line. Man will say, "no, just because a man thinks of killing or hating, but has not actually done the act, he should not go to hell."

In God's mind, all the above examples deserve the same punishment. The punishment for sin is death. (true and final "death" is the eternal separation from God.) The very thought of murder is murder, in God's eyes.

Keep in mind, the above is only my man made example. I am no mans judge. Only God will judge and judge finally and justly.

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post #89 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 01:17 PM
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Re: God: Summing it up

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3) The existence of Hell, and the concept of being punished for all eternity for a relatively minute lifetime of sin that apparently we're programmed to commit, when God could have chosen to prevent that programming in the first place.
Picture a glass of pure water. Even if you place a small drop of poison in the glass, it contaminates the ENTIRE glass. Sin is the same way. If I put one drop vs. 100 drops of poison and asked if you would drink of the glass with only one drop, what would be your answer?

You would not drink. It is contaminated. God is perfect and Holy. He cannot behold sin. Sin is NOT in Him. Even when His only perfect Son died on the cross, the moment in which all sin was transferred onto the back of Jesus Christ, God turned the other way.

Mark 15:
[34] And at the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eloi, Eloi, lama sabachthani? which is, being interpreted, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?
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post #90 of 769 (permalink) Old 03-15-2017, 01:18 PM
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Re: God: Summing it up

It all comes down to if the bible is true or untrue. People can debate it all day long. You can quote bible verses all day at me. But in the end, prove to me that God really wrote it through ordinary men and the content is accurate. You can't.

I grew up in a Christian home, graduated from a private Christian school. When I think for myself, it's very hard to believe. But it's also very hard to believe that this universe just created itself out of nothing. Or perhaps maybe it was just always there, there was no beginning. That is after all how God became. It's a crapshoot.

If they somehow discover life on another planet, can you imagine how the Christians will respond? It would making life really interesting!
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