To the Christians...

Discussion in 'Religion Archives' started by H-kon, Oct 22, 1999.

  1. truestory Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,122
    Searcher,

    The "Prince of Peace" prophecy (which you excerpted from Isaiah) and Jesus Christ's teachings in the flesh concerning the Ministry and Mission in Galilee (which you excerpted from Matthew), if compared, would certainly seem like a contradiction. However, Isaiah's prophecy was speaking about the future "Reign of Christ" (not the temporal life of Christ on this earth as we know it) as being characterized by peace while Christ was speaking to the twelve disciples concerning their mission, the persecution which they would endure, how their discipleship would cause division (like a sword) and the conditions of discipleship.


    As far as the Old Testament is concerned, I never wondered why there was no mention of an Anti-Christ. Actually, I'm not quite sure if that assessment is even accurate. There might be some who see the Anti-Christ in the symbol of the serpent in the first book of the Old Testament. This does not cause a problem for me, though. (Perhaps the "term" Anti-Christ was not developed in human phraseology until after we understood the term "Christ?")


    The above refers to Jesus' teachings about the conditions of discipleship and the importance of forsaking temporal earthly matters for the sake of eternal salvation. Specifically, it means that one who denies Jesus in order to save one's earthly life will be condemned to everlasting destruction; loss of earthly life for Jesus' sake will be rewarded by everlasting life in the kingdom.

    I understand that you are speaking what is on your mind, that you have many questions... that you are searching for the truth. Personally, I think that's a good thing.

    You are not the first (or the last, I'm sure) to refer to accepting the gift of eternal salvation as being a "slave". There are many who perceive God's plan in this manner. I believe that to be a great deception. I do not think that loving God can be equated to slavery.

    In reality, God's plan is to share (walk with) the souls of mankind, eternally, in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit. God gave us the wisdom, the truth and a free will to decide whether or not we will accept the greatest of all gifts. It is up to each of us, as individuals to accept or deny.

    Well, thanks for asking and thanks for listening... May God be with you.
     
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  3. Searcher Registered Senior Member

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    651
    Truestory,

    Yes, that translation would certainly make much more sense than the KJV does. I read that passage a number of times and simply couldn't make anything else out of it. It would certainly help to be able to read the books of the Bible in the original languages in which they were written rather than have to depend on others to translate for us. Thank you for helping with that.
     
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  5. Searcher Registered Senior Member

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    651
    Truestory,

    I have a big problem with dumping the responsibility for my own actions on anyone else's shoulders, and I have an inborn distrust of anyone who tells me it doesn't matter what I've done - all my debts will be paid in full once I sign on the dotted line. I grew up believing I should pay all of my own debts, and bankruptcy was not an option.

    I definitely have the sense that there is something I am agreeing to that isn't quite out in the open. It's as if someone is asking me to sign a document I'm not even allowed to read until it's too late, and eternity's a very long time to regret making a bad bargain. Even if it's really just that easy, why should I be able to dump the blame on someone else and skip merrily away? Maybe perishing isn't such a bad thing after all, but we really won't know until we get there. Maybe I'm looking a gift horse in the mouth, but this isn't what I would call an "informed choice".

    Thank you for your patience.
     
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  7. Searcher Registered Senior Member

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    651
    Another discrepancy that bothers me is regarding God's attitude toward nudity in the beginning vs later on. For example, God didn't seem to mind the nakedness of Adam and Eve in the least when they were in the Garden. But in 1 Corinthians 11:5,6, it seems that God is so distracted just by a woman's uncovered head, that she shouldn't even pray to him without being completely covered up.

    It certainly seems to me, as others have stated before, that a great deal of the Bible reflects more the attitudes of the men who wrote the books of the Bible than the God who supposedly inspired them. It may seem like a minor point, but if the Bible could be corrupted in small ways, why not in more substantial ways as well?
     
  8. cats Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    36
    Searcher, you are right about that. I have read in the book, "The Twelth Planet" and other books that the church fathers translated the Bible to their way of thinking. If a word had two meanings then they went with what they think it should be. The Holy trinity was not added until about the 14 to 16 centuries by the church elders.
    Remember the church killing people because they did not belong to it.
     
  9. truestory Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,122
    Searcher,

    I believe it is the common man, rather than God, who was confused... In Paul's first letter to the first generation church of Corinth he is responding as an authoritative figure (the founder) to both questions addressed to him and to situations of which he had been informed. Some things are puzzling because we only have the correspondence in one direction. However, to treat the wide spectrum of questions, Paul wrote on behalf of the majority of the faithful "at that time" to guard against the perceived threats posed to the community by the views and conduct of various minorities. As you know, conformity is almost always the easiest way for any organized society to conduct itself. The verses you referred to above was "part of" Paul's response to a question concerning one of the perceived problems of conduct in liturgical assemblies... whether or not women and men should keep their heads covered/uncovered while praying.

    What I find interesting is the summation of his response to the issue of Women's Headdresses which can be found in 1 Corinthians 11:13-16...

    "13 Judge for yourselves: is it proper for a woman to pray to God with her head unveiled? 14 Does not nature itself teach you that if a man wears his hair long it is a disgrace to him, 15 whereas if a woman has long hair it is her glory, because long hair has been given [her] for a covering? 16 But if anyone is inclined to be argumentative, we do not have such a custom, nor do the churches of God."

    It sounds to me like Paul and God agree with you, Searcher. In the big scheme of things, this is a minor issue. It was important to the contemporary Greek society at the time, though, and that is who Paul was addressing. Verses 14-15 contain a final appeal to the sense of propriety that contemporary Greek society would consider "natural." However, in my opinion, Verse 16 is "timeless."



    [This message has been edited by truestory (edited October 26, 1999).]
     
  10. truestory Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,122
    Searcher,

    You don't have to dump the responsibilities of your own actions on anyone else. Without Jesus Christ in your life, you are spiritually bankrupt. God sent the Son, Jesus Christ, in the flesh, to show us the way. We have all of the information we need to exercise our free will in the manner it was intended for salvation. "IF" you would like to share eternally with God in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit, "THEN" the one thing you have to do is, not to dump, but to accept Jesus Christ into your life. It is not too late. All things can be forgiven. Behold the Son (Jesus Christ). Through Him all good things will come.
     
  11. Searcher Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    651
    Truestory,

    Okay, call me argumentative, but if they didn't have such a custom, why was it brought up in the first place? One moment Paul is saying that it is a shame for a woman to worship God without a covering on her head, and the next moment he's saying that if anyone disagrees with that, then it really doesn't matter so much after all?

    And what does Paul mean by nature teaching us that if a man has long hair it is a shame to him? Nature doesn't keep man from growing his hair long (unless, of course, he is suffering from male-pattern baldness). In fact, most often in nature it is the male of the species that has the most adornment. It is the male lion who has the beautiful mane, while the female is quite plain. The male deer sports an awesome set of antlers, while the female, again, is plain. And look at how the peacock struts around with his tail all fanned out - he doesn't seem very ashamed to me! The poor peahen can't compete with that.

    It seems to me that Paul was once again spouting his own narrow views without anything to back him up.
     
  12. 402 Registered Member

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    23
    Truestory,

    There are many misinterpretations of the original biblical writings.

    Aramaic, the language of Jesus was mis- translated many times by many people throughout the centuries. Sometimes by accident more often, intentionally.

    When Jesus said that 'he was the way', this meant that his methods were the way to God.

    To go peacefully and privately into one's heart to find the source. Not buildings, not through ministers. But within, in God's temple.

    All else is nothng more than ego, greed and control of those less informed.

    I am Christian and since my childhood, have sought the truth about that which I had been misled for years by the church and it's proponents.

    Although the clothing and communications are different today than in Jesus time, the fatal flaws of humans have not wained one bit.

    People had agendas and lied then as well as now.

    It is often said that we are God's children and that God wants us to rejoin in Heaven.

    What parent in their right mind would go out of their way to create a road map as confusing and contorted as the Bible and then give it to his/her children? That would require a very sick mind indeed.

    We have been told that we are separate from God and unworthy. This is nothing more than manipulation of peoples minds and emotions.

    The truth is not complicated. We need no interpretation and it is for each to find his/her own truth.

    No minister or other clergy had the right or the knowledge to tell any of us how our lives should be led. They have a vested inerest, cut and dried!

    We all are born with the ability to function and function well. It is only those who are unsure of themselves who feel the need to control others, so as to feel in control of their own, out of control lives.

    No clergy has walked in my/your shoes or lived my/your life, or experienced my/your pains and joys.

    They have no power save that which we choose to relinquish. That is our birthright.

    Why throw it away?!

    They have done nothing to deserve such a gift!
     
  13. Flash Registered Senior Member

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    771
    402,
    Perfect...just perfect!

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    Bravo! That soooooo needed to be said.
     
  14. truestory Registered Senior Member

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    1,122
    Searcher,

    Again, these questions were brought to Paul by the members of the community of the first Church of Corinth who were looking for conformity in common church practices. (This small church community was a first, and the members of this community were looking for guidance, trying to find organization in their manner of worship). That is why the people brought it up.

    Paul first responded to them within the context of the natural laws which the majority of these ancient Greeks understood and lived by at the time. Paul first appealed to the community for conformity when answering this question and others, in accordance with the lifestyles that they were accustom, because "conformity" is what the majority was looking for. However, in his summation, Paul empasized that although "doing what the Greeks do when in Greece" might be considered important (in Greece) individuals who did not dress "properly," individuals who did not "conform" to a dress code were certainly welcome and worthy to worship in the church.

    "We have no such custom," meaning the founders and teachers of the church of God did not have such a custom. Paul was entrusted with founding the church to bring the word of God to people of all lands, with all of the varying cultures and lifestyles. If you understand that this was just the first, and a very small church community at that, I think you can see why Paul (and God) would attempt to bring harmony into the community but would certainly not limit worshipping only to those commoners who followed a certain dress code.

    402,

    I agree with you whole-heartedly... Bricks and mortar are not needed (at this point in history) in order to bring Jesus Christ into your life and to follow the way to God. However, we, at this time, know a heck of a lot more about Jesus Christ/God than did those who lived before us. This is due, in part to the albeit imperfect work of the church. I agree, "organized" Christianity has gone astray in many respects and I am not a big proponent of organized religion in general. I do not respect or condone the acts of those who abuse their ministerial calling. The indiscretions and abusive acts by others, however, should not stop us from sharing the life of Jesus Christ and the word of God with others so that they, too, might be saved.

    [This message has been edited by truestory (edited October 28, 1999).]
     
  15. 402 Registered Member

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    23
    Truestory,

    The key however to salvation is that act which takes place in the heart of each of us in our own manner and time. Not by way of conversion through the words of others or their insistance.

    Words and scripture are those things of the mind and have no real bearing on spirit.

    They are the stuff of intellect. Understanding of God is not a matter of mind.
    It is internal now as it was in the begining.
    God is not a complex concept.

    The actuality of God is so simple in fact that it is difficult for some human minds to actually grasp. Thus, scriptures have evolved as mental handles to hold onto.

    We have been led to believe that we are separate and divided form God & Christ(the origin of this coming from the ancient Greek which means Love, correct me if I am in error here).

    We have never been separate from salvation or God or Christ. We have only been led to believe that this is so.

    A veil has been draped upon us for 2000 years and the time to awake and see clearly is upon us.

    That which is out side of us is temporal and fleeting (scripture being subject to this on all levels). God/Christ is neither temporal nor fleeting.

    The letting go of words and the noice and allowing our minds to be still and our hearts to be heard will bring us the truths we all seek.

    What ever they may be.
     
  16. truestory Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,122
    402,

    I am very much in agreement with most of your words above.

    As far as the origin of the word, I am not sure, however, I have read that the best translation for "Christ" is "the annointed." Jesus is seen as the "truly annointed" by the Spirit of God.

    In a previous post you stated the following:

    Now, if we never "heard" of Jesus through "words" or never "read" of Jesus in the "scriptures" how would we know what His methods were? How would we know the way to God. Yes, there were a few souls prior to the coming of Jesus Christ who were able to go inward and find God without the benefit of Jesus Christ, His words or scripture. However, they were few and far between... The main reason why God came to us in the flesh of Jesus Christ... So that we could "hear" God's words perfected and so that God's words would be written for the future benefit of mankind and its salvation.

    On the conditions of discipleship, Jesus told the crowd, "Whoever wishes to come after me must deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake and that of the gospel will save it. What profit is there for one to gain the whole world and forfeit his life? What could one give in exchange for his life? Whoever is ashamed of me and of my words in the faithless and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels."

    Therefore, I must disagree that the words of Jesus Christ are not important.
     
  17. 402 Registered Member

    Messages:
    23
    Truestory,

    I must agree with your disagreement!

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    Jesus' words were/are important. However, there is a difference between his teachings and those of people who's agendas were less than legitimate regarding spiritual matters.

    Although there were those in Judeo/Chritian culture who did reach God within, without the benefit of scripture, there were and are those of the East, India, Tibet etc. who accomplished this long before Jesus arrived as we know him.

    These cultures, have, for what seem obvious reasons, been left out of the Bible and virtually all Christian teachings.

    There is again as we both know, the factor of human fatal flaws that tend to leave out important details such as these.

    I think we are on the same river, just paddling different canoes!!

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    Godspeed!
     
  18. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    36,616
    Truestory ....

    I need to quote an excerpt from your 10/26 post to Searcher; I hope I am still within context:

    "I believe it is the common man, rather than God, who was confused... "

    Here I must agree with you. By your interpretation (rather, what little pieces of it I know) or mine, that statement reflects proper truth.

    Normally, I would ask a question here: "Why has God not intervened more directly if this confusion is threatening His establishment?" This, I know, is a paradox of faith, since we do not question God's motives or methods. Furthermore, who am I to declare this is actually what's happening or not.

    So the question becomes: "How can we begin to clear this haze of confusion?" You and I have tangled often over how generally the label of "Christian" may be applied. This only becomes important when, as individuals and institutions have, throughout history, apply the tools of God's wisdom to the wrong purposes. I would cite here my usual list of human tragedies, but I'm aware they're getting stale.

    Does the confusion in the modern day start with the pulpit? Does it even start in the modern day? Is it impossible to reconcile the breaches of old, which opened when this or that bishop or council applied God's mercy through death and politics?

    It seems to me that much of the confusion is exploited on the Christian side when faithful use God as their excuse to legislate and demand dominion over the lives of others. Similarly, the American movement away from Christianity often leaps for the jugular in this sense, pointing out the perceived "unchristian" attitude of these followers of the Schlaflys, Mabons, Robertsons, et cetera. I really don't think that any religion is so far removed from any other that they cannot reconcile the most part of their differences; and I don't think that the "nonreligious" people are that far removed from the religions they fear.

    Which is why I advocate some of the whacked ideas I do ... God as universe, and so forth. I honestly believe that if I can demonstrate that a given image of "God" reconciles with its source material (e.g. The Bible), then perhaps that individual and I might move past petty bickering and philosophical sniping. Nonreligious people are trapped fighting back against the actions of some of the dumber religious individuals and the organizations they support. Likewise, religious people feel constant pressure, from all sides, religious or otherwise, to constantly restate their faith. The sum total of these processes seems to be that communication between the bodies philosophical is rare.

    I don't expect the Christians to reject God and Christ for anything or anyone. Likewise, I don't expect Muslims or Buddhists or anyone else to abandon their core philosophy. But there must be a common range in which everyone can communicate certain ideas. Anything getting in the way of that, I think, must necessarily be useless pride.

    Truly, it is man, and not God, that is confused. But what is to be done?

    thx,
    Tiassa

    ------------------
    "Let us not launch the boat until the ground is wet." (Khaavren of Castlerock)
     
  19. Searcher Registered Senior Member

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    651
    It seems to me that all the Christians, except for Truestory, left this board about a week ago. Did we drive them off? Although I can't speak for anyone else, that certainly wasn't my intention! I'm sorry if my questions and opinions have hurt some people's feelings - that's not my intention either. But I must voice them!
     
  20. 402 Registered Member

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    23
    Searcher,

    No hurt feelings here! Just been up to my butt with work!

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    In general discourse of this topic, I think there is an inherent danger in getting caught up in quoting scripture form the Bible. (or any scripture in any faith for that matter)

    The trip wire here is, what evolves out of quoting and extraction out of context is that a group mind set develops that can lead us away from the true source that lies within.

    It is very easy to get caught up in the furvor of the "group" and to stop thinking for ourselves and what it is that each of us feels is right for us.

    History shows that the group mind has caused tremendous damage to the Earth and it's people. Community and conscious liveing are of great benefit as long as there is balance and moderation.

    Maniacal fanatacism has a deep and long tradition of being born from such group mind set. That of formal religion, being the most lethal.

    Scripture is a guide, not an immutable law. The interpretation is for the individual in their own context. Each of us lives a different life regardless of the similarities.

    To assume that one book has all the answers for all people is a dangerous assumption to say the least.



    [This message has been edited by 402 (edited October 31, 1999).]
     
  21. H-kon Registered Senior Member

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    312
    Searcher - There is a lot of people that used to be here that are now gone.. If they were driven off, i don't know. But there have been lots of people that are just passing through here so to speak. I am a little bit amazed that this BBS isn't more populated when there are so many people interested in this stuff. Maybe we should help Dave here to get some more people in here? ( like I am a member of 10 BBS, and i discuss on them daily)
     
  22. Lori Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    1,065
    Flash,

    He brought both. The only way to true peace is by the sword. We made it that way, when we let Satan into our lives. The only way to peace is to rid ourselves of the influence of Satan. See how easily you are confused? Maybe it's more logical to assume that you just don't understand EVERYTHING in the Bible, than to assume that just because you don't understand EVERYTHING, that the whole thing must be false. I'm sorry, you know I wub you, but that is a VERY arrogant assumption to make. Especially when considering your exposure to Christianity. All you were ever exposed to were holier than thou phonies (to say the least), who obviously used their religion in an inappropriate manner. You've never been saved, never asked for the Holy Spirit, won't pray in Jesus' name, and will not under any circumstances even consider changing anything about yourself to comply with the Word of the Lord, so why is it that you would assume that you would have any flippin' idea about the Bible or Chrisianity? I think it's pretty clear that you are not being objective in your decision-making. Until you honestly give your life to Christ through faith and prayer, you're not going to understand everything, and even then it could take 20 lifetimes to find all of the meaning and revelation in the Bible. But let me be very, very clear that the main and most important messages in the Bible are crystal. No mistaking it. You can't get it wrong, it's so basic, and repeated, and driven home with 18 different paraboles and verses. You don't understand the Bible because you choose not to. And that's it.

    ------------------
    God loves you and so do I!
     
  23. Flash Registered Senior Member

    Messages:
    771
    Lori,
    Did you even read the rest of the scriptures???????????????? How can you say that??? You paint this picture..and ahhhhhhhh!!
    It sounds like he is trying to divide and split the families a part... Come on Lori!
    You think one has to "saved" to get all this
    wisdom???? Ha!
    P.S.
    ummm you kind of got carried away there..IF
    you get my drift?
    Also, that is not all I was exposed to..that was the later part of my life.. I was raised
    in a Lutheran chuch. Now what do ya have to
    say about that??

    [This message has been edited by Flash (edited November 04, 1999).]
     

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