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Are We Worthy Of God?
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Baradakas
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2004 1:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

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Quote:
That said, I don't intend to imply that there is anything wrong in the example of christ. He offers morally sound teachings, which we would all do well to emulate. But not because the alternative is an eternity of suffering.


A common misconception in the Bible and christianity is that we suffer eternally for our sins. It is simply not true. We are offered a second chance (the White Throne Judgement) and if we fail again, we suffer the second death, which is utter oblivion of the spirit, not hell, as the Catholics preach it.
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PostPosted: Fri Sep 24, 2004 5:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmmm, you'll have to give me more on this before I can make a comment, although it's a moot point for me.

I have read however, that the "misconception" you mention comes from a deliberate mistranslation of the word eon, which, at the time, apparently only referred to 100 years, but when that translation was done, and the word appeared in conjunction with the word punishment, was translated as "eternal".

This only reinforces my idea that one of the primary reasons for the perpetuation of christianity was that it was in the best interests of the rulers. It's very convenient to be able to say: "Everything may be horrible now, but if you bear your suffering like a good boy, you'll have an eternity of bliss, after you die."

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Baradakas wrote:
The Bible states that we are the way we are because of the Devil's Temptations. However, should we truly follow the example of Christ, we could be worthy of God......


I'm gonna elaborate on this a bit...
The Bible states that we are all born into sin; it's been passed down since the Fall like a black birth-mark on our souls. Jesus said "No one comes to the Father except through me." The Bible also says "...the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men." (Romans 5:18) So, going on the Bible's statements--as you were--even if we never sinned once in our lives, we still wouldn't be worthy to enter heaven unless we went through Jesus; that means accepting His sacrifice and having that birth-mark removed by him *wry grin* don't worry, he doesn't use a scalpel.

So...are we worthy of God?
Well, going on what the Bible says again:
"All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." - Romans 3:23
BUT
"since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God." - Romans 5:1&2
Translation? Christ makes us worthy, and no other.

Not a popular belief, is it? Well...you asked.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 7:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Iryssa wrote:
The Bible states that we are all born into sin; it's been passed down since the Fall like a black birth-mark on our souls.


Now this is a concept that I've always had a problem with. When I look at a new-born baby, I can't conceive of a god who would condemn it to purgatory/limbo/whatever if it dies before it is baptised. (EDIT: Not to mention that I see the "soul" as something we develop as we grow)

What you (christianity) is saying is that we are automatically "sinful". I have enough problems with the concept of sin without having to imagine that they apply to new-borns. A New-born baby is a blank slate. They are impressed with the thoughts and opinions of their parents first, and then those of their environment.

I cannot accept that they are inherently "sinful". They strike me as the only true innocents. We load them down with the psychological and emotional baggage that they have to drag through life.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The thing is, it's human tendancy to sin...I'm sure you can see that. Why do we do things we know aren't good for us? Why do even very young children push the boundaries with their parents, to see exactly how much they can get away with? Why do we go over the speed limits when we know that the faster we go, the more dangerous accidents can be?

As far as babies...
NO, I don't believe that when a baby dies, they go to hell because they couldn't accept Christ...they didn't have the chance, did they? Romans 5:13 says "for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. " (which may make you wonder why God made law...to which I have to tell you to go read my post here because I'm getting sleepy and don't think I could explain it again)
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I agree that humanity has a tendancy to "sin", if thats what you want to call it.

My problem lies in the assumption that because of this tendancy, babies are automatically "sinners".

Surely we should give them the chance to rack up a few sins for themselves before we start saying that they need to be "saved"?

(Wish I could be getting sleepy Smile -- It's nearly 10am for me though, and they'd frown on me sleeping at my desk Laughing)

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 8:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

*laugh* it's 2:30am here...so if I keep getting less coherent, that's why...

Oh, I wouldn't call babies "sinners" either...they don't have the habitual sin patterns like everyone else...what I mean is that the human tendancy is there from birth...even if it can't show itself until after one starts to learn right from wrong. (That's where the verse about thow the Law applies comes into play)
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The tendancy may be there, but that doesn't make us born sinners. It may mean that we will inevitably become sinners, (for the purposes of this discussion anyway) but then the statement that we are born already "sinners" cannot be right.

No baby has committed a sin at the time that it is brought into the world. Thus, it's not (and can't be)a sinner.

BTW I think you're doing great considering it's well past midnight for you.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Neither babies nor children are "sinners". The misunderstanding stems from a basic misinformation about baptism. The catholic and most christian churches baptize babies, yet this was not how it was meant to be!
Baptism was to occur upon reaching manhood, when a man or woman was to be considered responsible for thier own actions (and dedication to God). Sprinkling water was also incorrect, as "the waters of the Lord's Spirit wash over you", you were supposed to be completely immersed! Children and babies are considered pure until they reach maturity, until then they were considered the responsibility of thier parents.
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 27, 2004 6:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right, and not only that, but it has to be a peronal choice for one to be baptized...baptism is an act of obedience, so how can it be considered so if you do it without being able to protest (okay, well, most babies put up quite a protest about all that cold water on their heads Wink ), and without even knowing what the heck is going on?
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 5:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So we're not considered "sinners" from the moment we are born?

I definitely agree with the idea that baptism should be a matter of personal choice. That might also reduce the number of "habitual" christians.

By that I mean that people who are born into christian families (or into any religion) tend to follow it from habit. They have been taught that X is right, and so for them, it is right, and thats what they do/think/believe.

In my opinion, not enough people put the sort of critical thinking that we are into their religions.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 6:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

*nods* I agree, Avatar....

As far as the "sinners" thing goes...no, I wouldn't say they're sinners from birth...as in they don't act on sin...they wouldn't have the first clue how to...but the tendancy to sin is still inborn. i.e. if they live past infancy to a time where they can make such choices, they will inevitably sin...the only one who didn't is Jesus, and he was the son of God.
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 8:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Right, but doctrine is that everybody is a sinner from the instant they're born, by virtue of the Original Sin.

Thats like saying that because your father was a bank-robber, you have to sit in jail.

Again, not fair in my opinion.

BTW, I'm really enjoying these discussions. Thanks.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

woah...now I'm falling victim to the fallacy of equivocation here...sorry...
In the post above, I was talking "sinner" as in actively sinning...
in the context of Original Sin, you're right. Everyone is born with it (which is what I meant by "tendancy to sin"). I don't pretend to know all the secrets of heaven, but the way I've always understood it was that that's pretty much a spiritual law...that the sins of the fathers are passed down. Comparing it to our judicial system is a little bit difficult, simply because spiritual laws don't apply (otherwise, you're right, you would have o go to jail if you father was a bank robber)...If you want to continue on that allegory though, that makes God the judge, and in the trial he's telling you you can get off on bail, for both your crimes and the ones passed down, and that it's already been paid by him, he's just waiting for you to accept it...frankly, it doesn't make sense to me why anyone would refuse that bargain. Of course...you have to believe such a bargain exists for you to accept it, which, I think, is where most people run into difficulties *grin*
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 28, 2004 9:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't necessarily say that the bargain could not exist, everything is possible. However, even if it did, I can't accept it on moral grounds.

To be honest, and I realise that you'll have difficulty with it, if it turns out that the christians are right, I like to believe that I'd turn it down just on general principle, if I had the opportunity.

I don't think that I've done anything that a just god would condemn me for. And the things that I've done in the past that I do feel would negatively affect my "soul", I've done my best to atone for in my own way. If there is a god, and if it all works the way christians think it does, then I'm not sure it's a god I want to be associated with.

Of course, we (humans) are making all this up as we go along. As you say, there is no way to know in advance.

I can't accept that we are held accountable for things we have never, and probably will never, do. The fact that we are supposed to accept god as removing that hypothetical stigma before we can have a pleasant afterlife is not one that I can agree with.

If there is a god, and if he truly cares about the way that we live our lives, it should be that which counts, and not whether you've abased yourself before him.

I do sometimes wish that there is a god, when I hear about attrocities committed, people defrauding the poor, and other morally repehensible things. However, when I do wish that, the god I wish for is one who is truly just.

One who condemns people on the basis of their actions, on the basis of the harm that they've done to others and not made ample restitution for. And not on whether or not they have worshipped him.

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