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Reichette

Some Who Believe In Jesus, Won't Go To Heaven

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As far as I understand, an atheist rejects ALL gods, so why would you say I reject ALL + 1?

Or perhaps you meant to say, "you just reject one less God than an total atheist does.", i.e. ALL - 1? If you want to see like that, that's fine by me. I could be your atheist theist, how does that sound to you? :-)

 

(I'll get back to your question later - don't have time right now unfortunately)

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I just find this so contradictory. One one hand you tell us about God's name written this so many times in the OT, as well as believing literally in the account of creation in Genesis, on the other you tell us Jesus chucked out the OT (so that Christians can have bacon for breakfast?) You give us the quotes that tell us about sinners and hell and issue dire warnings, but don't worry so much about the quotes of loving your neighbor and not judging people. Etc. The Bible is a big book, even if you arbitrarily decide to chuck out the OT. The NT gospels even contradict themselves on occasion, as I'm sure you are aware. Plenty of stuff to contradict plenty of other stuff. What's the point, as I asked before, of doing this? You believe what you wanna believe. I believe good people get their just reward in the afterlife, no matter which particular god they pray to or who shares their bed. You believe they have to pray to your particular god and follow certain selected rules from a much bigger bunch of rules. Whatever. My first rule in judging if someone is "godly" or not - even if they are atheist - is what they do to help others, particularly the vulnerable who cannot help themselves. If (and I don't know you reichette, this is not aimed at you but a general if) someone goes to church each Sunday and prays to Jesus and never sins or not big anyway, but doesn't do a damn thing to actually help anyone out there, I don't think Jesus is too impressed. He'd probably rather hang out with Ismail who goes to the local children's shelter each week to hang out with the kids and help them read, etc.

Edited by SJ27
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Shaun, I'll approach it by using reasoning (i.e. ignoring the Bible for the time being): If there is a god, then surely there can only be one.

 

Suppose the different religions' gods did all exist, and suppose those gods were all almighty and creative in nature (like the God of the Bible claims to be), then how come we all look the same? Why is it not that Hindu creatures look different in design to Muslim creatures; look different in design to Buddhist creatures; look different in design to Christian creatures, etc. ? How come one can virtually transplant any person's organs to almost any other person on earth? Did all these multiple gods collude and agree upon some uniform design? Hardly. Did they all create at exactly the same moment in time to be even able to do that? Unlikely!

 

If the many various gods were real, one can also easily imagine untold rivalry among them - who's the greatest, who's the smartest, who's the mightiest, etc. etc. And since they're all assumed almighty, is it that hard to imagine that an enraged god could act in revenge and annihilate the creatures of another from the face of the earth in an instant... ? Has it ever been witnessed in history of a supernatural annihilation of a specific religious group ?

 

Think of the time when people still believed the earth to be flat. No doubt that many, many different theories must have existed of what lurks at the end of the earth: a great chasm, or darkness, or whatever ...? In the end, despite the many theories, only one absolute truth existed when it was discovered that the earth was in fact round and everyone else's was dead wrong. The same principle applies to the question of where we all come from and what will happen to us after this life.

 

Hence, pragmatism already hints that there can only be one god. The question is, which one?

 

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To answer why I believe the Christian God to be the real and true one (i.e. why only the God of the Bible is relevant), and not one of the many others:

 

Taking a step back from the Bible for a moment, for me to be able to believe in any god whatsoever, he has to be PERFECT in EVERY way and posses THE most impressive, noble, pure, untainted characteristics that the mind can ever imagine:

 

  • Almighty
  • Omnipotent
  • Omniscient
  • Omnipresent
  • Most Holy
  • Eternal
  • Transcendent
  • Immutable
  • Infinite
  • Perfectly Loving
  • Perfectly just
  • Righteous
  • Graceful
  • Merciful
  • Sovereign
  • etc.

 

(Just by reviewing the list above, one can already exclude many of the gods out there)

 

But here's the thing: Why is that people believe in a god in the first place (by far the greatest majority in all of the ages have always believed in the existence of some or other deity)? It is because they share a mutual sense of a supernatural creator when they observe and marvel at all created things around them.

 

Another shared trait of most faiths (if not all), is that they sense the greatness of the creator and their own shameful, inferiority and fallibility by contrast when they consider their own sinful nature (no one - incl. atheists - can successfully argue that mankind is not sinful and wicked by nature). And it is at this point that the many different faiths will resort to different ways and methods of reconciliation and appeasement of their gods. Some will self inflict pain and wounds, yet others will try to do as many good deeds as possible to their fellow human beings throughout their entire lives, yet others will pray from dawn to dusk, yet others will engage in all kinds of rituals, etc. etc.

 

Here's the thing: If the god one believes in is truly the ultimate personification of those pure characteristics that I have listed above, incl. being the most Holy, the most Just, etc., THEN what amount of human endeavor can EVER satisfy Him, can EVER absolve one from one's sins and reconcile one with the most High God?

 

The answer: N-O-T-H-I-N-G. There is absolutely nothing that we can do and no price high enough that we can pay in order to restore ourselves before such a great god.

 

And it is on this point that the God of the Bible is so much different from all the others. The only absolution good enough to satisfy a most Holy and Almighty God, is the blood of a most perfect and sinless sacrifice. No one and nothing in God's creation qualifies to be such a perfect sacrifice, but God Himself. Therefore He sent His only Son, Jesus Christ, to take the punishment on Himself that we so rightfully deserve, so that we may live if we would only believe in Him and accept this free gift of His.

 

No other faith on earth has it that its God died and paid for the sins of His created beings - NONE other. No greater love has one, than he who is willing to die for another. Show me any other God that love as much as the God of the Bible, where He died, rose from the death and ascended into heaven as our Savior before God.

Edited by Reichette

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SJ27, thank you for (finally) sharing what you believe in. I respect your beliefs even though I don't agree with any of it.

"Jesus chucked out the OT" were not my words. What I said, was that the laws of the OT that were given to the Israelites, are not binding on Christians. Big difference. If the OT was in any way irrelevant, it will not have been part of the Bible today. On the contrary, it is very much relevant still. Even the laws in the OT that don't apply to us anymore, still hold value in that they reveal God's nature and character to us. (For example - to take a favorite point of criticism among atheists - the law against wearing clothing made of different types of fabric (which was a heathen practice of the time), shows to what extent God is concerned about our lives. That even the clothing that we wear as His followers must bear testimony of His holiness as we try to live holy lives before Him - that our clothing ought to be decent and respectful at all times)

 

The OT does not only consist of laws and rules, it also contains prophesies (eg. Daniel's visions that are repeated in a different form in Revelations in the NT), proverbs, psalms and many records of historic value (such as the story of creation, Noah's flood, etc.). The OT lays the foundation for the coming of the Messiah (Jesus Christ) who would sacrifice Himself for the sins of the world.

The two testaments are complimentary: The OT saw paradise lost for Adam and his descendants; the NT shows how paradise is regained through the second Adam (Christ). The OT declares that man was separated from God through sin and the NT declares that man can be restored in his relationship to God. The NT records the ministry of Jesus Christ and then looks back on what He did and how we are to respond. Both testaments reveal the same holy, merciful, and righteous God who condemns sin but desires to save sinners through an atoning sacrifice. In both testaments, God reveals Himself to us and shows us how we are to come to Him through faith.

 

No, the gospels (and the whole Bible for that matter) doesn't contradict itself. It may seem so on occasion, but the four gospel writers wrote independently, each from his own perspective. It is like having four people witnessing the same motor vehicle accident taking place from different viewpoints, giving four slightly different accounts of what happened that may even appear contradictory on certain aspects. If anything, the gospel writers' occasional differing accounts add more credibility by confirming that these were no "copy and paste" tales being shared.

Jesus is indeed more impressed by those who demonstrate their faith in Him by loving their neighbor and doing good deeds to them. Will good deeds save though? Not according to the Bible. Only faith in Jesus Christ can save. Once saved and filled with the Holy Spirit, one's acts of love in fulfillment of Jesus' command will add to one's reward in heaven one day. Reward vs salvation - big difference right there.

Edited by Reichette

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Wow. None so blind perhaps?

 

You "reasoning" starts with "if there is a god". Why not look at the premise of "we have no proof that there is or is not a god" - the existence of a god is unknown at this time.

 

You are ascribing human failings (Greed, jealousy, pride etc.) to gods!! Let us assume just for a moment that (a) god exists - what makes you so presumptuous as to assume you actually know what they think, how they think and what their end goals are??

 

 

How come one can virtually transplant any person's organs to almost any other person on earth? Did all these multiple gods collude and agree upon some uniform design? Hardly. Did they all create at exactly the same moment in time to be even able to do that? Unlikely!

 

 

All of the above is mans attempt to explain the unfathomable and scary in a manner that the mind can comprehend and, given we do all look alike, it is not hard to understand how humans have imagined gods to be in their likeness (Rather than the other way around).

 

 

And since they're all assumed almighty, is it that hard to imagine that an enraged god could act in revenge and annihilate the creatures of another from the face of the earth in an instant... ?

 

 

Again with assigning human characteristics to an unknown, not understood preeminent being - how would you know?? You would not.

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Lol Shaun there you go again trying to combat faith with reason ;)

 

I seriously doubt reichette knows much about the other gods other than what his church has told him that enables him to choose his one out of hundreds of religions, and tbh my interpretation of what he has stated here as religious tenets/conclusions seems very much at odds with his list of traits of the perfect god....but to each his own.

 

My problem with religions stems from the basis of a philosophy of "first do no harm"; unfortunately a number of branches of religion do exactly that, by starting off a base of hate and exclusion of certain types. Of course this is not confined to evangelical Christians. But it certainly means I totally disagree with some of the "religious" sentiments expressed earlier, just as reichette disagrees with mine.

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Sorry SJ I guess there is a certain streak of Don Quixote in me - tilting at windmills. I know you are correct but a part of me simply cannot resist at least trying to get him to listen to another point of view rather than be this inward looking individual with his fingers in his ears to any point of view except his own.

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Sorry SJ I guess there is a certain streak of Don Quixote in me - tilting at windmills. I know you are correct but a part of me simply cannot resist at least trying to get him to listen to another point of view rather than be this inward looking individual with his fingers in his ears to any point of view except his own.

I understand that entirely, it's the same reason I'm still banging my head against a brick wall in here, haha.

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Shaun, anyone who has placed their faith in Christ and trusted Him with their salvation has received the Holy Spirit. In their hearts they have the proof, the fellowship, the communion, the awareness and assurance of the inner presence of God. He is as real as I am typing here right now (You have never been told a greater truth in your life than what I am telling you here right now, nor will you ever be again. One day - regardless of whether we believed in Him or whether we rejected Him - we will all bow our knees before the one and only Creator that we all have in common).

 

God is spirit and His reality is best experienced in the spirit, though He'll never enter a heart if He is not welcomed there.

 

Without a belief in the existence of a supernatural deity, one is left only with a most ridiculous theory (evolution) to try to explain how everything came to be. Those that believe in it, claim to be realists; claim to be scientific, etc. Yet they can't (and never will be able to) scientifically explain the origins of E in E=mc2. The only credible explanation for it, is that it was supernaturally created by a force so great that the human mind cannot even begin to understand it.

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Seriously?

Science and evolution are garbage and the explanation for the wonders of the universe is ....... a mythical supernatural being for whom no evidence exists apart from anecdotal writings!

It must be magic then!

 

Hey, I have a bridge I'm selling. You interested?

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Correction to the heading of this topic: It should actually have read, "Some who say that they believe in Jesus, won't go to heaven" (or, "Some who "believe" in Jesus, won't go to heaven") as that is what I really tried to convey in my first posting in this thread (but which is incorrectly reflected in the heading of this topic - my apologies for that!)

 

The Bible is clear that whosoever truly believes in Jesus WILL go to heaven. Rom 10:9 "If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved".

 

Some people say that they believe in Jesus, but deep down they don't also believe it in their hearts; they don't really trust Him for their salvation. It is of these "believers" that Jesus spoke of in John 8 - refer again to the first posting in this thread. (James 2 says that even demons believe in Jesus and that they shudder - we know that demon believers certainly won't go to heaven...)

Furthermore, we read in James 2:24, "You see that a person is considered righteous by what they do and not by faith alone". And in Matt. 7:18-20, "A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them."

 

Thus, one cannot claim to be a Christ believer and yet continue to live in sin in direct opposition to God's will as if there is nothing wrong with it, i.e. say that you're a "good tree", but continue to bear "bad fruit".

Edited by Reichette

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