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Pastor doesn't believe in H E L L


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The "Gandhi in hell" argument is completely irrefutable, IMO. It's ludicrous to think that people who were completely exemplary in every way but were born into a different religion must all be in hell. Not only ludicrous, it's insane.

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The "Gandhi in hell" argument is completely irrefutable, IMO. It's ludicrous to think that people who were completely exemplary in every way but were born into a different religion must all be in hell. Not only ludicrous, it's insane.

 

IMO the notion of Hell is ludicrous anyway. I just can't trick my brain into believing it. I've always felt it's a man-made scare tactic.

 

That being said, the congregation has every right to boot him.

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there's a helluva lot more to rob bell's argument than "hell doesn't exist". I am so glad he wrote this book ("love wins"), the reaction to it is shining a light that exposes what a lot of christians really hold dear.

 

I would also encourage some of the people who bash and mock christianity to check out the book themselves.

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HELL does exist but not as a fiery place of torment. Its the eternal grave of mankind. It symbolizes complete destruction as was Gehenna a place outside Jerusalem where the garbage was burned. The bible says Jesus went to hell but was resurrected. The bad will be burned in HELL in that they will be completely destroyed but not suffer eternal torment.

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The "Gandhi in hell" argument is completely irrefutable, IMO. It's ludicrous to think that people who were completely exemplary in every way but were born into a different religion must all be in hell. Not only ludicrous, it's insane.

Well if God is omniscient and knows the beginning and end, than it could be said that people are damned to hell all mamby-pambly. I mean - we can project how a nuclear bomb will explode with a computer and we are grains of sand compaired to the desert planet of Arrakis, that is God. (which is a vast understatement).

 

How is it that he cannot project our every move (knowing us, knowing our peers, enviroments, etc). Its simple cause and effect. A loving God would not put somebody in a country on the other side of the earth and give them loving parents, loving family, loving peers and loving teachers (who are all of a different faith) and damn that person to hell for not accepting Christ as our savior.

 

Folk in the Bible walked beside Jesus. They saw healing and miracles, angels and burning bushes. AND THEY STILL DOUBTED!! Can you imagine seeing Jesus... walking beside him and STILL doubting?

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The "Gandhi in hell" argument is completely irrefutable, IMO. It's ludicrous to think that people who were completely exemplary in every way but were born into a different religion must all be in hell. Not only ludicrous, it's insane.

It's this sort of thing, above most other insane things that I find coming from the church that makes me shake my head. If there is any goodness at all in religion. If god (whatever form he/she/it takes) is as good as advertised, then someone like Gandhi would not end up in hell just because he was going to a different church. To me, that torpedoes any reason for thinking your church is the path to righteousness and outs you as a bunch of close-minded elitists.

 

Same with dogs. It's all so territorial and human-centric.

 

I mean, if the kindest people can't fit into heaven because they're of the wrong religion, and if a creature as prone to goodness and purity as a dog can't make it because they're not the right species, the whole thing is a bunch of crap.

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CS Lewis, evangelical darling that he is, said, "I would pay any price to be able to say ‘All will be saved’ but my reason retorts, ‘Without their will, or with it?’” and also, "I believe that if a million chances were likely to do good, they would be given". seems pretty similar to what bell is saying.

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The Preacher is wrong, we must understand that there is the dreadful pit of the glowing flames of the wrath of God; there is hell's wide gaping mouth open; and you have nothing to stand upon, nor any thing to take hold of; there is nothing between you and hell but the air; it is only the power and mere pleasure of God that holds you up.

 

You probably are not sensible of this; you find you are kept out of hell, but do not see the hand of God in it; but look at other things, as the goodstate of your bodily constitution, your care of your own life, and the means you use for your own preservation. But indeed these things are nothing; if God should withdraw his hand, they would avail no more to keep you from falling, than the thin air to hold up a person that is suspended in it.

 

Your wickedness makes you as it were heavy as lead, and to tend downwards with great weight and pressure towards hell; and if God should let you go, you would immediately sink and swiftly descend and plunge into the bottomless gulf, and your healthy constitution, and your own care and prudence, and best contrivance, and all your righteousness, would have no more influence to uphold you and keep you out of hell, than a spider's web would have to stop a fallen rock. Were it not for the sovereign pleasure of God, the earth would not bear you one moment; for you are a burden to it; the creation groans with you; the creature is made subject to the bondage of your corruption, not willingly; the sun does not willingly shine upon you to give you light to serve sin and Satan; the earth does not willingly yield her increase to satisfy your lusts; nor is it willingly a stage for your wickedness to be acted upon; the air does not willingly serve you for breath to maintain the flame of life in your vitals, while you spend your life in the service of God's enemies. God's creatures are good, and were made for men to serve God with, and do not willingly subserve to any other purpose, and groan when they are abused to purposes so directly contrary to their nature and end. And the world would spew you out, were it not for the sovereign hand of him who hath subjected it in hope. There are black clouds of God's wrath now hanging directly over your heads, full of the dreadful storm, and big with thunder; and were it not for the restraining hand of God, it would immediately burst forth upon you. The sovereign pleasure of God, for the present, stays his rough wind; otherwise it would come with fury, and your destruction would come like a whirlwind, and you would be like the chaff of the summer threshing floor.

 

The wrath of God is like great waters that are damned for the present; they increase more and more, and rise higher and higher, till an outlet is given; and the longer the stream is stopped, the more rapid and mighty is its course, when once it is let loose. It is true, that judgment against your evil works has not been executed hitherto; the floods of God's vengeance have been withheld; but your guilt in the mean time is constantly increasing, and you are every day treasuring up more wrath; the waters are constantly rising, and waxing more and more mighty; and there is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, that holds the waters back, that are unwilling to be stopped, and press hard to go forward. If God should only withdraw his hand from the flood-gate, it would immediately fly open, and the fiery floods of the fierceness and wrath of God, would rush forth with inconceivable fury, and would come upon you with omnipotent power; and if your strength were ten thousand times greater than it is, yea, ten thousand times greater than the strength of the stoutest, sturdiest devil in hell, it would be nothing to withstand or endure it.

 

The bow of God's wrath is bent, and the arrow made ready on the string, and justice bends the arrow at your heart, and strains the bow, and it is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, and that of an angry God, without any promise or obligation at all, that keeps the arrow one moment from being made drunk with your blood. Thus all you that never passed under a great change of heart, by the mighty power of the Spirit of God upon your souls; all you that were never born again, and made new creatures, and raised from being dead in sin, to a state of new, and before altogether unexperienced light and life, are in the hands of an angry God. However you may have reformed your life in many things, and may have had religious affections, and may keep up a form of religion in your families and closets, and in the house of God, it is nothing but his mere pleasure that keeps you from being this moment swallowed up in everlasting destruction. However unconvinced you may now be of the truth of what you hear, by and by you will be fully convinced of it. Those that are gone from being in the like circumstances with you, see that it was so with them; for destruction came suddenly upon most of them; when they expected nothing of it, and while they were saying, Peace and safety: now they see, that those things on which they depended for peace and safety, were nothing but thin air and empty shadows.

 

The God that holds you over the pit of hell, much as one holds a spider, or some loathsome insect over the fire, abhors you, and is dreadfully provoked: his wrath towards you burns like fire; he looks upon you as worthy of nothing else, but to be cast into the fire; he is of purer eyes than to bear to have you in his sight; you are ten thousand times more abominable in his eyes, than the most hateful venomous serpent is in ours. You have offended him infinitely more than ever a stubborn rebel did his prince; and yet it is nothing but his hand that holds you from falling into the fire every moment. It is to be ascribed to nothing else, that you did not go to hell the last night; that you were suffered to awake again in this world, after you closed your eyes to sleep. And there is no other reason to be given, why you have not dropped into hell since you arose in the morning, but that God's hand has held you up. There is no other reason to be given why you have not gone to hell, since you have sat here in the house of God, provoking his pure eyes by your sinful wicked manner of attending his solemn worship. Yea, there is nothing else that is to be given as a reason why you do not this very moment drop down into hell... :wacko:

Edited by SEC=UGA
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Folk in the Bible walked beside Jesus. They saw healing and miracles, angels and burning bushes. AND THEY STILL DOUBTED!! Can you imagine seeing Jesus... walking beside him and STILL doubting?

 

bingo. this is one of the biggest struggles i have in my faith. the entire construct of being saved is based on getting you to believe something that is unbelievable. that's it. if you are able to suspend the reason that god gave you, then you will be saved.

 

god put jesus here to help convince us. to do that, he had to do miracles. if he didn't, we wouldn't believe him. so here we sit 2,000 years later and we don't get to see those miracles. we only get an account of them in a book. surely if those who were with him struggled, and he needed to convince them with the supernatural, then understanding that this is incredibly difficult today has to be understandable. to hang our eternal salvation on it can actually seem cruel.

 

some scripture from john 16

 

25“Though I have been speaking figuratively, a time is coming when I will no longer use this kind of language but will tell you plainly about my Father. 26In that day you will ask in my name. I am not saying that I will ask the Father on your behalf. 27No, the Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28I came from the Father and entered the world; now I am leaving the world and going back to the Father.”

 

29Then Jesus’ disciples said, “Now you are speaking clearly and without figures of speech. 30Now we can see that you know all things and that you do not even need to have anyone ask you questions. This makes us believe that you came from God.”

 

31“You believe at last!”b Jesus answered. 32“But a time is coming, and has come, when you will be scattered, each to his own home. You will leave me all alone. Yet I am not alone, for my Father is with me.

 

33“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

 

so even jesus is relieved/excited when those closest to him finally got over the hump ...

 

small other point. god makes man. brings us into being. designs us. the first one of us sins. the very first one disobeys. this couldn't be a shock as it was god who created us. immediately, we are all cursed. for thousands of years, we continue to act as designed. we are then offered a ministry of 3 years that happened within walking distance in a time without global communications as the sole means to overcome the design flaw that was built into us .... sheesh. under this construct, we are told that god loves us infinitely ...

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I have a personal and unique view into religion now that I am older and I feel that I really don't fit into any of the denominations. So what I type here is strictly my personal beliefs and nothing more.

 

 

HELL does exist but not as a fiery place of torment. Its the eternal grave of mankind. It symbolizes complete destruction as was Gehenna a place outside Jerusalem where the garbage was burned. The bible says Jesus went to hell but was resurrected. The bad will be burned in HELL in that they will be completely destroyed but not suffer eternal torment.

 

Hell is not a place of fire and brimstone nor a place where souls are stored...in fact it's not even a place. Hell is nothing more than the absence of God's grace. When Jesus 'died' and went to hell, he was really outside of the grace of God.

 

How is it that he cannot project our every move (knowing us, knowing our peers, enviroments, etc). Its simple cause and effect. A loving God would not put somebody in a country on the other side of the earth and give them loving parents, loving family, loving peers and loving teachers (who are all of a different faith) and damn that person to hell for not accepting Christ as our savior.

 

We are given the gift of freewill to determine our own actions in life. While God loves us all unconditionally it is up to us to believe in the holy word or not. He may be able to predict our moves because he is all knowning/all seeing but because we have freewill, we can change our minds/actions at anytime.

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The Preacher is wrong, we must understand that there is the dreadful pit of the glowing flames of the wrath of God; there is hell's wide gaping mouth open; and you have nothing to stand upon, nor any thing to take hold of; there is nothing between you and hell but the air; it is only the power and mere pleasure of God that holds you up.

 

You probably are not sensible of this; you find you are kept out of hell, but do not see the hand of God in it; but look at other things, as the goodstate of your bodily constitution, your care of your own life, and the means you use for your own preservation. But indeed these things are nothing; if God should withdraw his hand, they would avail no more to keep you from falling, than the thin air to hold up a person that is suspended in it.

 

Your wickedness makes you as it were heavy as lead, and to tend downwards with great weight and pressure towards hell; and if God should let you go, you would immediately sink and swiftly descend and plunge into the bottomless gulf, and your healthy constitution, and your own care and prudence, and best contrivance, and all your righteousness, would have no more influence to uphold you and keep you out of hell, than a spider's web would have to stop a fallen rock. Were it not for the sovereign pleasure of God, the earth would not bear you one moment; for you are a burden to it; the creation groans with you; the creature is made subject to the bondage of your corruption, not willingly; the sun does not willingly shine upon you to give you light to serve sin and Satan; the earth does not willingly yield her increase to satisfy your lusts; nor is it willingly a stage for your wickedness to be acted upon; the air does not willingly serve you for breath to maintain the flame of life in your vitals, while you spend your life in the service of God's enemies. God's creatures are good, and were made for men to serve God with, and do not willingly subserve to any other purpose, and groan when they are abused to purposes so directly contrary to their nature and end. And the world would spew you out, were it not for the sovereign hand of him who hath subjected it in hope. There are black clouds of God's wrath now hanging directly over your heads, full of the dreadful storm, and big with thunder; and were it not for the restraining hand of God, it would immediately burst forth upon you. The sovereign pleasure of God, for the present, stays his rough wind; otherwise it would come with fury, and your destruction would come like a whirlwind, and you would be like the chaff of the summer threshing floor.

 

The wrath of God is like great waters that are damned for the present; they increase more and more, and rise higher and higher, till an outlet is given; and the longer the stream is stopped, the more rapid and mighty is its course, when once it is let loose. It is true, that judgment against your evil works has not been executed hitherto; the floods of God's vengeance have been withheld; but your guilt in the mean time is constantly increasing, and you are every day treasuring up more wrath; the waters are constantly rising, and waxing more and more mighty; and there is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, that holds the waters back, that are unwilling to be stopped, and press hard to go forward. If God should only withdraw his hand from the flood-gate, it would immediately fly open, and the fiery floods of the fierceness and wrath of God, would rush forth with inconceivable fury, and would come upon you with omnipotent power; and if your strength were ten thousand times greater than it is, yea, ten thousand times greater than the strength of the stoutest, sturdiest devil in hell, it would be nothing to withstand or endure it.

 

The bow of God's wrath is bent, and the arrow made ready on the string, and justice bends the arrow at your heart, and strains the bow, and it is nothing but the mere pleasure of God, and that of an angry God, without any promise or obligation at all, that keeps the arrow one moment from being made drunk with your blood. Thus all you that never passed under a great change of heart, by the mighty power of the Spirit of God upon your souls; all you that were never born again, and made new creatures, and raised from being dead in sin, to a state of new, and before altogether unexperienced light and life, are in the hands of an angry God. However you may have reformed your life in many things, and may have had religious affections, and may keep up a form of religion in your families and closets, and in the house of God, it is nothing but his mere pleasure that keeps you from being this moment swallowed up in everlasting destruction. However unconvinced you may now be of the truth of what you hear, by and by you will be fully convinced of it. Those that are gone from being in the like circumstances with you, see that it was so with them; for destruction came suddenly upon most of them; when they expected nothing of it, and while they were saying, Peace and safety: now they see, that those things on which they depended for peace and safety, were nothing but thin air and empty shadows.

 

The God that holds you over the pit of hell, much as one holds a spider, or some loathsome insect over the fire, abhors you, and is dreadfully provoked: his wrath towards you burns like fire; he looks upon you as worthy of nothing else, but to be cast into the fire; he is of purer eyes than to bear to have you in his sight; you are ten thousand times more abominable in his eyes, than the most hateful venomous serpent is in ours. You have offended him infinitely more than ever a stubborn rebel did his prince; and yet it is nothing but his hand that holds you from falling into the fire every moment. It is to be ascribed to nothing else, that you did not go to hell the last night; that you were suffered to awake again in this world, after you closed your eyes to sleep. And there is no other reason to be given, why you have not dropped into hell since you arose in the morning, but that God's hand has held you up. There is no other reason to be given why you have not gone to hell, since you have sat here in the house of God, provoking his pure eyes by your sinful wicked manner of attending his solemn worship. Yea, there is nothing else that is to be given as a reason why you do not this very moment drop down into hell... :wacko:

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We are given the gift of freewill to determine our own actions in life. While God loves us all unconditionally it is up to us to believe in the holy word or not. He may be able to predict our moves because he is all knowning/all seeing but because we have freewill, we can change our minds/actions at anytime.

So, you are saying that God is so limited that he cannot know how we'd react to something?

 

I mean - I know if somebody puts their hand in fire, they are going to pull it back in pain. If you rip a toy out of a toddler's hands, he is going to get upset. I know if my daughter's boyfriend dumps her that she is going to be depressed.

 

I am only 36 years old, but I know these things well enough. I am 10x wiser than I was at 26 and a hundred times wiser than I was at 16. I can only expect that this should continue in some shape or another. But I also believe that God is so far beyond us that comparatively there is no difference between a infant and person who has lived full life of 99 years on this planet.

 

Once again - when we (pathetic little, seriously flawed humans) have computers that can test nuclear bombs - how is it that God is not so wise to know how we would react with something. Psychologists and profilers do this to one degree or another and even if they are only 10% accurate, they are not God. God should be universes ahead of these folk.

 

How can God not understand how one of his creations will react to another of his creations (be it another person or the enviroment). Do you honestly see him as that limited?

 

You mentioned us changing our minds. Isn't that simply us reacting to our peers and enviroments and whatever other catalyst put their by God? Is that free will at all? Again - if you put a toddlers hand on a hot burner and he/she pulls it away - is that free will or a reaction to his/her enviroment?

Edited by Duchess Jack
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I have a personal and unique view into religion now that I am older and I feel that I really don't fit into any of the denominations. So what I type here is strictly my personal beliefs and nothing more.

 

 

Hell is not a place of fire and brimstone nor a place where souls are stored...in fact it's not even a place. Hell is nothing more than the absence of God's grace. When Jesus 'died' and went to hell, he was really outside of the grace of God.

 

We are given the gift of freewill to determine our own actions in life. While God loves us all unconditionally it is up to us to believe in the holy word or not. He may be able to predict our moves because he is all knowning/all seeing but because we have freewill, we can change our minds/actions at anytime.

 

Excellent insight. I tend to view "hell" as being outside of God's grace as well ,and that "free will" is a gift that allows us to be able to choose, rather than it merely being determined by God.. Seriously, what would be the point in that?

 

 

Kudos for that preacher not focusing on what is perhaps the most fear-laden part of organized religion: Hell. This subject bothers me just like people who try to justify good deeds with things like "karma" and "heaven". Not to say that there's anything wrong with those beliefs, but isn't that such a guilt-ridden reason to do people right?

 

This is something I feel is far too often lost in organized religion: You should do the right thing because it's the right thing to do, not because you expect any reward for your behavior, or that you fear going to hell or not getting into heaven. The only basis for any good act should be to treat people like you'd want to be treated. Why cheapen that by only focusing on your selfish consequences for doing wrong or right?

 

It's also my issue with people who think that they can commit whatever sin they want, but then go on Sunday (or even their deathbed) to suddenly be forgiven by God. Even if that's the case and God will give you forgiveness if you seek it, do you really think the almighty being won't be able to tell that you're full of it in only asking forgiveness when you're suddenly scared of the consequences that you didn't care about before?

 

If you do the right things for the right reasons, then I don't see how any kind God will put you below someone who's "accepted Jesus" and only worries about their soul one day a week...

 

 

(ETA: I don't mean to just attack Christians here, especially those who do the right things for the right reasons, but it's just the only one I have much experience with)

Edited by delusions of granduer
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So, you are saying that God is so limited that he cannot know how we'd react to something?

 

I mean - I know if somebody puts their hand in fire, they are going to pull it back in pain. If you rip a toy out of a toddler's hands, he is going to get upset. I know if my daughter's boyfriend dumps her that she is going to be depressed.

 

I am only 36 years old, but I know these things well enough. I am 10x wiser than I was at 26 and a hundred times wiser than I was at 16. I can only expect that this should continue in some shape or another. But I also believe that God is so far beyond us that comparatively there is no difference between a infant and person who has lived full life of 99 years on this planet.

 

Once again - when we (pathetic little, seriously flawed humans) have computers that can test nuclear bombs - how is it that God is not so wise to know how we would react with something. Psychologists and profilers do this to one degree or another and even if they are only 10% accurate, they are not God. God should be universes ahead of these folk.

 

How can God not understand how one of his creations will react to another of his creations (be it another person or the enviroment). Do you honestly see him as that limited?

 

You mentioned us changing our minds. Isn't that simply us reacting to our peers and enviroments and whatever other catalyst put their by God? Is that free will at all? Again - if you put a toddlers hand on a hot burner and he/she pulls it away - is that free will or a reaction to his/her enviroment?

 

saw this bit earlier today, seems relevant:

 

At an abstract level, people seem to be what philosophers call incompatibilists: those who believe free will is incompatible with determinism. If everything that happens is determined by what happened before, it can seem only logical to conclude you can’t be morally responsible for your next action.

 

But there is also a school of philosophers — in fact, perhaps the majority school — who consider free will compatible with their definition of determinism. These compatibilists believe that we do make choices, even though these choices are determined by previous events and influences. In the words of Arthur Schopenhauer, “Man can do what he wills, but he cannot will what he wills.”

 

Does that sound confusing — or ridiculously illogical? Compatibilism isn’t easy to explain. But it seems to jibe with our gut instinct that Bill is morally responsible even though he’s living in a deterministic universe. Dr. Nichols suggests that his experiment with Mark and Bill shows that in our abstract brains we’re incompatibilists, but in our hearts we’re compatibilists.

 

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Edited by Azazello1313
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We are given the gift of freewill to determine our own actions in life. While God loves us all unconditionally it is up to us to believe in the holy word or not. He may be able to predict our moves because he is all knowning/all seeing but because we have freewill, we can change our minds/actions at anytime.

Which holy word? Where does this leave poor old Ghandi - outside God's grace, whatever that is? If Hell isn't fire and brimstone but merely "outside God's grace", how does that change the argument? It isn't the literal definition of the characteristics of hell that are in dispute, it is the concept that a perfectly good human being would be consigned to it at all.

Edited by Ursa Majoris
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transcript of a very interesting interview with rob bell

 

So, in the Middle Ages, the monks made maps with heaven somewhere on the map. It’s over here or over there. Is there a secret door?

 

 

Jesus turns the whole discussion upside-down. He comes from a first-centry Jewish world view, and he keeps insisting, actually God is interested in restoring you and restoring this world. God made a world and he calls it good, and so the fundamental story that unfolds is Jesus, may your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. So he thinks of it as a real place. The father is in heaven. And yet it’s always heaven and earth becoming one. So as opposed to the “How do we get there?” his interest is “How do we bring there here?” Now that’s a much different kind of discussion.

 

 

Where are the souls of the people I love who are passed away right now?

 

The assumption is that, because physical bodies are buried, that they are disembodied. So you have soul, you have essence, people have used different words. They are nevertheless real and conscious and alive. Others say that everyone is sort of asleep, and at some moment in the future everybody will wake up. There’s endless speculation about that.

 

What would you say?

 

I’d say there’s endless speculation about that. [Laughter] Actually, I’d say it’s very important when you’re bumping up against [mystery], to not turn your speculation into dogma.

....

Are you a universalist?

 

No – if by universalist we mean there’s a giant cosmic arm that swoops everybody in at some point, whether you want to be there or not. And this is why. A couple years ago I did a wedding. The father of the bride made it really clear that he despised the groom, in a multitude of ways. And so, in the ceremony, when he walked his daughter down, and the father of the bride hands the bride off to the groom, he said “She’s yours now” [in a grouchy voice] in front of everybody. It was like, awkward! We could all just feel the love in the room. This father of the bride single-handedly cast the most oppressive dark cloud on the whole occasion, because parties are terrible when there’s somebody there who doesn’t want to be there. So, if by universalist we mean that love doesn’t win, and God sort of co-opts the human heart and says, “You’re coming here and you’re going to like it,” that violates the laws of love. Love is about freedom, it’s about choice. It’s about, “Do you want to be here?” Because that’s what would make it heaven. If you’re there, and you don’t want to be–

 

Now, do I think all sorts of people with all sorts of backgrounds with all sorts of labels, will be – yes, I think heaven’s full of surprises. And I think Jesus brought this up again and again and again. He told all sorts of stories about how all the people who were supposed to be in might be out and the people who are out might be in. This was central to his teaching. Like, ah-ah-ah, be careful. God’s middle name is surprise. That’s not actually a verse [laughter], but I like it.

Edited by Azazello1313
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You mentioned us changing our minds. Isn't that simply us reacting to our peers and enviroments and whatever other catalyst put their by God? Is that free will at all? Again - if you put a toddlers hand on a hot burner and he/she pulls it away - is that free will or a reaction to his/her enviroment?

 

I've actually written several long essays on free-will vs. determinism that I won't bore you with here, but my view is that, while the environment (and God in this case) certainly have a large part to do with the person you are and what you do (i.e., everything is a reaction to the environment or an inherited trait, and thus can be argued as determinism)...

 

But what about those moments when everything in the world tells you to do something one way, but you go with your "gut" and do it another way. The decision could go completely go against what your experiences, personality, etc. have to told you, but you do it any way... I have no way of proving it, but to me that is an example of you utilizing free-will.

 

But back to the subject of God, the question becomes: If God determines everything, then what is the point of our existence? Why should I work to become a better person if God's simply determined that I'm going to be a scum bag anyway? And that's just one example of how it takes away alot of meaning out of our lives if you take away free-will... Thus is the reason that just our perception of free-will, no matter how faulty it may be, is essential to human behavior and progress; And though much of it may be an "illusion", and in actuality mere reactions, but I truly believe that we do have this capacity to think beyond how your simple animal thinks and reacts accordingly.

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But back to the subject of God, the question becomes: If God determines everything, then what is the point of our existence? Why should I work to become a better person if God's simply determined that I'm going to be a scum bag anyway? And that's just one example of how it takes away alot of meaning out of our lives if you take away free-will... Thus is the reason that just our perception of free-will, no matter how faulty it may be, is essential to human behavior and progress; And though much of it may be an "illusion", and in actuality mere reactions, but I truly believe that we do have this capacity to think beyond how your simple animal thinks and reacts accordingly.

 

so god really created us and then just sat back, wondering what kind of a choice we would make? do you really think that he was on the edge of his seat, wondering if adam and eve and then all that followed would live a sinless and perfect life? if he wanted us to be perfect, he could have created us that way. instead, he gave us "free will" to make our own choices. when created being #1 made the wrong choice, god then proceeded to curse that first being, and every single one that followed. we no longer lived for hundreds of years, weeds began to grow, we had to atone for every sin, etc. etc.

 

AND, if we don't comply with all the stipulations, we are condemned to hell.

 

man, it's so cool that he gave us all these choices.

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I'm a Christain, but I dont believe for 1 second that if you're not a Christian, you're going straight to hell when u die....all I know is that God's love and wisdom is so immense its totally beyond comprehension for us humans....I dont know how he will judge us, no one is perfect but him and he knows this and is always willing to give even the most vile of humans a second chance, all they have to do is ask. I also tend to think he might hold other's accountable in his judgement of a person who we might consider a "bad egg" (for lack of a better term)... he woud take into account their upbringing (or lack thereof), influences, etc...maybe I'm wrong in this way of thinking, but its what I believe

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HELL does exist but not as a fiery place of torment. Its the eternal grave of mankind. It symbolizes complete destruction as was Gehenna a place outside Jerusalem where the garbage was burned. The bible says Jesus went to hell but was resurrected. The bad will be burned in HELL in that they will be completely destroyed but not suffer eternal torment.

 

I been away from my studies for a number of years and may have erred. I will try to do better.

 

HELL - The common grave of mankind. Anyone who dies goes to hell until they are resurrected, as did.Jesus. The is no pain or suffering in hell. See Eccl 9: 5,6 and Psalm 146:4

 

GEHENNA - The fiery Gehenna spoken of in the bible. The place outside Jerusalem, the Valley of Hinnom. This was a site of idolatrous worship. This site became an incinerator for garbage, dead animals and criminals. Sulfur and brimstone was added to help the burning. Living persons were not pitched into Gehenna. No one suffered as being tormented. It is referring being completely removed from God's memory as not to receive a resurrection. When the scriptures speak of a "fiery Gehenna" it also has the same meaning as "the lake of fire."

See Matt 10:28

 

So anyone who dies goes to hell until they are resurrected but being pitched into the "fire" means you are removed from God's memory. That's my understanding of the scriptures through my studies. I do not debate or argue with ones about it. Everyone has to decide for oneself. However, I do not mind discussing why I believe this or share info on it. This should be done through a PM though to respect the Huddle's rules. :wacko:

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