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THE END IS NEAR! Why do some people look forward to this?
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Dec 31, 2005, 01:14 AM
 
whatever you call it, end time, second coming, revelations, armageddon, etc...

why do some people (not all) like fundamental christians in the US that seem to feel it's a great thing to happen?

yes we know that, at the time, the good go to heaven and the bad go to hell...fine...but if a better christian than i dies the day before the end time, he would go to heaven and with the others there have essentially front row seats to the end time....right?

notice i'm trying to be PC...tell me if i am wrong but don't flame peace
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 06:42 AM
 
hmmmmm... aside from the "whatever you call it(s)" not being synonyms for a single event...

i would suppose that those who believe in such things welcome the new heaven and new earth because the respective versions 3.0 are reputed to be so much better than the current versions. unfortunately, i understand that gawd is not currently soliciting for beta testers...

be well.

laeth
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 08:11 AM
 
Originally Posted by ironknee
yes we know that, at the time, the good go to heaven and the bad go to hell...
Errr, you know that? Interesting. Care to elaborate?

Anyhow. I guess these people can't wait to be "come all ove". After all, that's their reward for sucking...

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Dec 31, 2005, 09:15 AM
 
Some people are convinced that their vision of the afterlife is so much better than their current life that it's worth the end of everything to get there. While this worked well in the Middle Ages (when real life sucked rather completely for most people), I don't see it as such a great draw today, at least in the Judeo-Christian ideals of the afterlife.

And I think the Islamic "hoards of virgins for martyrs" thing comes from a mistranslation from a pre-Arabic manuscript. I wish I could remember where I read it, but a scholar pointed out that this particular bit came from a very old writing that not only predated formalized Arabic (note: not all of the Koran was written in Arabic, so it cannot be literally said to have come down directly from The Prophet without translation...) but used terms that were open to interpretation.

It sort of reminds me of the old priest joke:
The priest dies and goes directly to heaven, and when he gets there he asks to see all the original writings and to be able to read them as a native speaker of their languages. Later, St. Peter finds the priest crying and asks why. The priest says "it was a typo; it said CELEBRATE, not CELEBATE!"

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Dec 31, 2005, 09:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by ironknee
whatever you call it, end time, second coming, revelations, armageddon, etc...

why do some people (not all) like fundamental christians in the US that seem to feel it's a great thing to happen?
I think you'll find that when you say; "look forward to end times" what Christians believe are a result of "end times" are anything, but pleasurable. What they're generally referring to in this instance is the return of God to earth. So, it's not the "end times" they're excited for as much as the "divine" opportunity this presents. I for one, appreciate much of what is here and have a couple of children. I'm personally excited to see them grow, marry, and have children of their own. I generally try to leave the big stuff to God. While I believe we live in compelling times, there are a great many "chicken-little" Christians who've been calling for end times for no less than thousands of years. I try not to buy into the guessing game.

yes we know that, at the time, the good go to heaven and the bad go to hell...fine...but if a better christian than i dies the day before the end time, he would go to heaven and with the others there have essentially front row seats to the end time....right?
The are those of both schools of thought. I generally say if you'r waiting on this event either to affirm or authenticate your faith, you may be one of the unfortunate having waited too long. Live life and live it good!

notice i'm trying to be PC...tell me if i am wrong but don't flame peace
no flames necessary. It's a very good question actually.
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Dec 31, 2005, 09:41 AM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter
It sort of reminds me of the old priest joke:
The priest dies and goes directly to heaven, and when he gets there he asks to see all the original writings and to be able to read them as a native speaker of their languages. Later, St. Peter finds the priest crying and asks why. The priest says "it was a typo; it said CELEBRATE, not CELEBATE!"

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Dec 31, 2005, 11:22 AM
 
The only people who get upset at the thought of dying are the folks whose lives weren't worth living.
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 01:25 PM
 
actually we Evangelical Christians believe we'll all be "sucked up" with Christ to Heaven BEFORE the 7 years of Tribulation starts and ends with his return to earth... True Christians won't be around to see the horrors of the Anti-Christ's wrath. We'll be gone.
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Dec 31, 2005, 01:56 PM
 
Originally Posted by italiano
actually we Evangelical Christians believe we'll all be "sucked up" with Christ to Heaven BEFORE the 7 years of Tribulation starts and ends with his return to earth... True Christians won't be around to see the horrors of the Anti-Christ's wrath. We'll be gone.
hmmmmm... i've heard at least three scenarios commonly espoused as accurate by evangelical christians:
- pre-tribulation "rapture"
- mid-tribulation "rapture"
- post-tribulation "rapture"

perhaps the "true christians"® are actually the ones who politely smile whenever these three are mentioned and then quickly get on about the two things jesus said was most important...

:-)

be well.

laeth
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 02:01 PM
 
Originally Posted by italiano
We'll be gone.
I am glad you are saved.

Do you happen to know who is after you (or before you) in line?
"Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.”

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Dec 31, 2005, 09:20 PM
 
some thoughts:

the "end time" or as some call it the rapture, is kinda like the christian version of the superbowl...meaning it's a big deal...but again, my query is why hope for it to happen within one's lifetime. people like jerry falwell said exactly that with a big smile.

my point again is, if i die 10 days, 100 days or 1,000 days before the "rapture", and if i was lucky enough to go to heaven, then wouldn't i STILL witness the rapture?...from up there you know?

so...my thoughts on the phrase, "I hope the end time will happen within my lifetime!"

1) The "Beam me up Scotty syndrome"
Life sucks. Look at all the bad in the world. I can't stand it, please god come back soon and save me (because I don't think i can make it to my death 30 years from now if i live an average life-span)

2) A "free Get out of jail card syndrome"
however dedicated i am to god and all his glories and living a good christian life and will probably go to heaven with my good deeds, underneath i am still afraid of dying.

If the end time comes and i am taken up to heaven within my lifetime, then i bypass death.

3) "revenge"
I want the endtime to happen because i want to see my enemies (who couldn't possibly be saved) sink down to hell...all those who slighted me or the girls who rejected me will see me go up to heaven laughing at them...

what do u think?
( Last edited by ironknee; Dec 31, 2005 at 09:28 PM. )
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 09:26 PM
 
You are going nowhere.
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Dec 31, 2005, 09:44 PM
 
^ i am the nowhere man
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 09:45 PM
 
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Dec 31, 2005, 10:07 PM
 
Originally Posted by ironknee
^ i am the nowhere man
And you have every right to be if that's you wish.

Personally, I don't give much credit to these fables. But that's me.
"Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.”

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Dec 31, 2005, 10:16 PM
 
Originally Posted by Pendergast
And you have every right to be if that's you wish.

Personally, I don't give much credit to these fables. But that's me.
oh dude...you got me wrong...i don't believe this stuff...but it's in the culture and it made me wonder...if u read my thoughts you'd see something is not right with this...there's something deeper that's "unspeakable" i think...primal feelings fear, desire...

but i am not putting down those who do believe in this...i am just asking a simple question to them
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 10:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by ironknee
oh dude...you got me wrong...i don't believe this stuff...but it's in the culture and it made me wonder...if u read my thoughts you'd see something is not right with this...there's something deeper that's "unspeakable" i think...primal feelings fear, desire...

but i am not putting down those who do believe in this...i am just asking a simple question to them
What?

ironknee, you don't have to deny anything, believe me I am with you on this. It is OK to believe in that stuff, really! And I think it's OK not to believe in it as I do.



Kidding aside, I think you asked a great question and about the primality of it, I would not go this far; look at our education, and how the mass media feeds us with extremes all the time, but forgets to mention the nice stuff too often.

That philosopher said: "God is in the details" and beauty is likely to be just as well.

Is there an end coming for us? I'd say nothing lasts, and all is change. Whether we put a religious wrapper around it or not makes no difference.
"Criticism is a misconception: we must read not to understand others but to understand ourselves.”

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Dec 31, 2005, 11:21 PM
 
cool pendergast

i really hope that i am just getting accross that i am asking only the logical questions dirived from the need/want...

an aside: as a child of 4 i said that i couldn't wait til i died. my grandmother scolded me for saying such a thing...then i explained that then i would be with god...she frowned and then smiled...
     
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Dec 31, 2005, 11:45 PM
 
Don't trust gran'ma.

And yes your question appears to be derived from need/want...
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Jan 1, 2006, 08:55 PM
 
[post and run]

[/post and run]
     
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Jan 1, 2006, 09:54 PM
 
In addition to the idea that some people may be looking forward to it, I question the morality of the whole idea. I attended an evangelical church this Christmas, and this was the clear (and only) message: Worship God and get eternal rewards; fail to worship God and get eternal torture.

How different is that system from Saddam Hussein's Iraq? He rewarded his extended family and sycophants, and he cruelly tortured dissenters. How is the God of the evangelicals any different? And how is it anything but cruel and immoral to believe that such a system is a good one?
     
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Jan 1, 2006, 11:07 PM
 
Bad church, then.

Blame the ministers and preachers, not the whole Faith.
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Jan 1, 2006, 11:17 PM
 
Originally Posted by ghporter
And I think the Islamic "hoards of virgins for martyrs" thing comes from a mistranslation from a pre-Arabic manuscript. I wish I could remember where I read it, but a scholar pointed out that this particular bit came from a very old writing that not only predated formalized Arabic (note: not all of the Koran was written in Arabic, so it cannot be literally said to have come down directly from The Prophet without translation...) but used terms that were open to interpretation.


Where did you hear this?


(it's wrong btw)

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Jan 1, 2006, 11:49 PM
 
Originally Posted by RAILhead
Bad church, then.

Blame the ministers and preachers, not the whole Faith.
Why would it be bad?

Aren't allowed to deal their Faith the way they understand it?

Who is to say they are wrong?
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Jan 2, 2006, 12:07 AM
 
Originally Posted by RAILhead
Bad church, then.

Blame the ministers and preachers, not the whole Faith.
Really? I agree in part with Pendergast, that I don't think it was a bad church, just an evangelical one. Isn't the "believe in Jesus -> saved; don't believe in Jesus -> not saved" formulation the basic, and really the only, message of evangelical Christianity?
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 12:08 AM
 
Spare me.

You say I'm wrong, I say you're wrong, so we're all wrong. That's not the point -- the point was not to let one sect define a Faith, just like radical terrorists don't define islam.
"Everything's so clear to me now: I'm the keeper of the cheese and you're the lemon merchant. Get it? And he knows it.
That's why he's gonna kill us. So we got to beat it. Yeah. Before he let's loose the marmosets on us."
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Jan 2, 2006, 12:10 AM
 
That's not what you said in your post. You said worship God and get eternal rewards. If that's what they think the Christian Faith is about, then they are misrepresenting in my opinion.

God's not a vending machine, and He plainly states that we receive salvation through faith, NOT works.
"Everything's so clear to me now: I'm the keeper of the cheese and you're the lemon merchant. Get it? And he knows it.
That's why he's gonna kill us. So we got to beat it. Yeah. Before he let's loose the marmosets on us."
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Jan 2, 2006, 12:14 AM
 
Are you saved RAILhead?
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Jan 2, 2006, 12:32 AM
 
Originally Posted by RAILhead
That's not what you said in your post. You said worship God and get eternal rewards. If that's what they think the Christian Faith is about, then they are misrepresenting in my opinion.
Faith then, rather than worship. It sounds the same to me: Do this thing, and you go to heaven, don't do it, and you get the lake of fire treatment. I can't call that a moral system. Can you explain to me how it is one?
God's not a vending machine, and He plainly states that we receive salvation through faith, NOT works.
Yes, exactly. It's not about how moral you are, it's about faith, or "worship" as I called it. I believe that most evangelicals - correct me if I'm wrong - believe that if you are saved, that's it. It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you have faith, you get eternal rewards, and the most moral person in the world who doesn't have faith will be eternally tortured. It's that emphasis on faith over works that makes that type of Christianity immoral, IMO.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 05:40 AM
 
Originally Posted by BRussell
Faith then, rather than worship. It sounds the same to me: Do this thing, and you go to heaven, don't do it, and you get the lake of fire treatment. I can't call that a moral system. Can you explain to me how it is one?

Yes, exactly. It's not about how moral you are, it's about faith, or "worship" as I called it. I believe that most evangelicals - correct me if I'm wrong - believe that if you are saved, that's it. It doesn't matter what you do, as long as you have faith, you get eternal rewards, and the most moral person in the world who doesn't have faith will be eternally tortured. It's that emphasis on faith over works that makes that type of Christianity immoral, IMO.
hmmmmm... i'll give it a go for you.

faith could be considered confidence in the character of someone who has made a promise or guarantee. you probably purchase insurance from a company in which you have confidence in their financial ability and willingness to pay a legitimate claim.

worship is more of an outpouring of praise and adulation. to be sure it is probably inspired by faith, but they are not one and the same.

faith in itself is not a moral system; however, the object of the faith may well have moral aspects. in the case of christianity the object of faith is jesus - and quite a lot of moral positions are attributed to him in the bible. so while that religion most certainly does address afterlife issues, it mostly addresses life issues. a congregation that dwells mostly on the afterlife issues (sunday after sunday, not a specific sermon) does a disservice to itself. it may make the members "so heavenly conscious that they are no earthly good" (don't recall where i first heard that quip).

as for what "most evangelicals" believe... it's probably dangerous to assume that evangelicals across the board agree more often than they disagree when it comes to the theology of salvation. ;-) scripturally speaking, though, it probably is not unreasonable to expect to see evidences of faith in the life of the purported faithful. faith is supposed to beget good works (it's a dead faith otherwise) if the bible is to be trusted.

now it is also presented that man is not justified by works or morality (likened to dirty rags and such), rather that faith can be reckoned as righteousness. so where does this leave us? probably that a moral code without faith is insufficient unto salvation and that faith without works is not really faith at all and also insufficient unto salvation. apparently both must be present - that faith unto salvation is evidenced by the life and deeds of the faithful.

hth.

be well.

laeth
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:50 AM
 
Originally Posted by isao bered
hmmmmm... i'll give it a go for you.

faith could be considered confidence in the character of someone who has made a promise or guarantee. you probably purchase insurance from a company in which you have confidence in their financial ability and willingness to pay a legitimate claim.

worship is more of an outpouring of praise and adulation. to be sure it is probably inspired by faith, but they are not one and the same.

faith in itself is not a moral system; however, the object of the faith may well have moral aspects. in the case of christianity the object of faith is jesus - and quite a lot of moral positions are attributed to him in the bible. so while that religion most certainly does address afterlife issues, it mostly addresses life issues. a congregation that dwells mostly on the afterlife issues (sunday after sunday, not a specific sermon) does a disservice to itself. it may make the members "so heavenly conscious that they are no earthly good" (don't recall where i first heard that quip).

as for what "most evangelicals" believe... it's probably dangerous to assume that evangelicals across the board agree more often than they disagree when it comes to the theology of salvation. ;-) scripturally speaking, though, it probably is not unreasonable to expect to see evidences of faith in the life of the purported faithful. faith is supposed to beget good works (it's a dead faith otherwise) if the bible is to be trusted.

now it is also presented that man is not justified by works or morality (likened to dirty rags and such), rather that faith can be reckoned as righteousness. so where does this leave us? probably that a moral code without faith is insufficient unto salvation and that faith without works is not really faith at all and also insufficient unto salvation. apparently both must be present - that faith unto salvation is evidenced by the life and deeds of the faithful.

hth.

be well.

laeth

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Jan 2, 2006, 01:18 PM
 
Originally Posted by isao bered
hmmmmm... i'll give it a go for you.
Thanks. You make a good distinction between faith and worship.

But here's my problem: I've not heard any Christians who believe in this model address its morality, let alone struggle with it. Is it a moral system when simply believing in it results in eternal rewards, but simply not believing in it results in eternal torture? Should faith in itself really result in infinitely disparate consequences?

If this was the earthly system, it would be considered a cruel dictatorship, not unlike Saddam's Iraq: "Accept me as your leader, and I'll give you a vacation home in Kirkuk; refuse to accept me, and it's off to the acid showers with you." How is the evangelical/fundamentalist (whatever label is appropriate) Christian model any different?

I also want to point out that, like Railhead said, I don't think this model is the only Christian model out there, although it is the fastest-growing. But Christianity, IMO, is a fundamentally humanitarian religion. That's why the Saddam Hussein model of Christianity irks me so much: It seems to be endorsing the very type of system that killed Jesus in the first place.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 03:04 PM
 
Maybe you are asking the right questions to the wrong person.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 03:28 PM
 
Originally Posted by BRussell
I've not heard any Christians who believe in this model address its morality, let alone struggle with it.
hmmmmm... a.w. tozer is almost always a good read. _who put jesus on the cross?_ may be of particular interest to you. granted, his work ended over a generation ago, but he addresses the situations you describe.

if you are more than casually interested get the book and read it - it contains transcripts of some outstanding sermons that will likely at least exercise your mind.

be well.

laeth
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 04:19 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kevin
Maybe you are asking the right questions to the wrong person.
That's a mysterious post. What do you mean?
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 04:24 PM
 
Originally Posted by isao bered
hmmmmm... a.w. tozer is almost always a good read. _who put jesus on the cross?_ may be of particular interest to you. granted, his work ended over a generation ago, but he addresses the situations you describe.

if you are more than casually interested get the book and read it - it contains transcripts of some outstanding sermons that will likely at least exercise your mind.

be well.

laeth
Well OK, but how about in the meantime you or someone else tell me your thoughts about it. Is a system that puts such consequences on faith a moral system? I think that question is, put in other words, ironknee's question: Is this really a good thing?
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 04:32 PM
 
When we finally destroy civilization, I really want the socialists to stand in the streets waiting for the government to "rescue" and take care of them.
And while they all starve waiting for the calvary, I'll be taking care of myself and family.
Armegeddon will be fun!
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 04:41 PM
 
Relax people.

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Jan 2, 2006, 06:22 PM
 
Most Christians don't so much look forward to Armageddon coming, per se. It's more that they look forward to it being over with. Some believe that this event will bring about the actual end of the world, but for others it's more a matter of bringing an end to the current corrupt system of things. Either way, no true Christian looks forward to the suffering and tribulations which would inevitably occur during such an event; what they look forward to is coming out on the other side of it.
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Jan 2, 2006, 06:48 PM
 
Originally Posted by RAILhead
That's not what you said in your post. You said worship God and get eternal rewards. If that's what they think the Christian Faith is about, then they are misrepresenting in my opinion.

God's not a vending machine, and He plainly states that we receive salvation through faith, NOT works.
What is faith? What are works? If we are saved through faith alone, then is simply believing enough, even if that belief bears no fruit? If, on the other hand, works are required, then can an unbeliever stumble into salvation by simply happenning to do the right thing? Or does faith itself imply works, such that the idea of "faith and works" is redundant?

For most sects, it seems, the third is what holds. Were salvation based solely on merit, then the afterlife would be an awfully lonely place; there's not a person alive who would measure up. Were salvation based solely on belief (note that I did not use the term 'faith' here), then why would there be so many warnings in both the Old and New Testaments against hypocrisy? The Sanhedrin of Christ's day technically stayed well within the Law given to them, and yet Jesus spoke out strongly against them: why?

In the end, there is a difference between simple belief and real faith. Faith and belief are synonyms in the strictest sense, but the term "faith" implies more than that: it implies a belief, or a feeling if you prefer, which moves people to act. This idea is one of the underlying roots of the evangelical movement: someone who wishes to do good and who has faith in a good thing will wish to teach others about it, so that others may share in it. From this perspective, logic dictates that someone who doesn't want to teach others either isn't confident in this good thing and thus doesn't believe, or doesn't wish to do good and thus is a hypocrite.
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:32 PM
 
Originally Posted by Spliffdaddy
The only people who get upset at the thought of dying are the folks whose lives weren't worth living.
It's called a "rescue fantasy" I think.
He can be fixed -- you can't.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:38 PM
 
Christians want the so called 'end times' to come during their lifetimes so they can say to non-believers "See I told you mother****ers the bible isn't bullshit!"
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:49 PM
 
....
( Last edited by ledzeppelin; Jan 29, 2006 at 11:50 PM. )
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:58 PM
 
Originally Posted by ledzeppelin
I think because they don't like having to work for a living.
Who says there is no work after death.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 09:59 PM
 
Originally Posted by Rolling Bones
Christians want the so called 'end times' to come during their lifetimes so they can say to non-believers "See I told you mother****ers the bible isn't bullshit!"
Is that what you really think? Really?
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 10:02 PM
 
Originally Posted by Kevin
Is that what you really think? Really?
Well I think it would be more to convince themselves.
     
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Jan 2, 2006, 10:03 PM
 
Originally Posted by Rolling Bones
Well I think it would be more to convince themselves.
Again...

I have a feeling some of you dislike Christians because of your narrow minded view of what you THINK they believe or feel.
     
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Jan 3, 2006, 12:58 AM
 
Originally Posted by Rolling Bones
Christians want the so called 'end times' to come during their lifetimes so they can say to non-believers "See I told you mother****ers the bible isn't bullshit!"

3) "revenge"
I want the endtime to happen because i want to see my enemies (who couldn't possibly be saved) sink down to hell...all those who slighted me or the girls who rejected me will see me go up to heaven laughing at them...

i think this is a possible reason...again not for everyone. and probably because they has some doubts themselves in the first place so when it does happen...HA! Told you so!
     
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Jan 3, 2006, 03:02 AM
 
Originally Posted by Kevin
I have a feeling some of you dislike Christians because of your narrow minded view of what you THINK they believe or feel.
What do Christians believe? How many Christian faiths are there anyway? Do you all have your own personal Jesus?
     
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Jan 3, 2006, 03:23 AM
 
Originally Posted by BRussell
Well OK, but how about in the meantime you or someone else tell me your thoughts about it. Is a system that puts such consequences on faith a moral system? I think that question is, put in other words, ironknee's question: Is this really a good thing?
hmmmmm... ultimately i suppose it depends upon whether this "system" is actually gawd's or man's. if it's gawd's, then questioning the morality or goodness of it is moot - the creation isn't in much of a position to sit in judgement of the creator.

now if it's man's system, it's of little consequence because it begins and ends with man. finite as opposed to infinite; temporal vice eternal. again, questioning the morality or goodness of it unto eternal salvation is moot. however, the morality or goodness of it for this present incarnation may be a valid pursuit - though that is not what you are asking.

okay. i'll take another swing...

"is a system that puts such consequences on faith a moral system?" again, this depends upon one's understaning of faith. simply put, christian faith is born and raised - authored and finished - in trust and obedience. trust in, as my father likes to put it, that "he who wrote the reading wrote the reading right" and obedience in carrying out that instruction the best you know how. that is the faith begetting the works (or the "morality").

that is not to say that either the trusting or obedience is an easy thing. and that is likely true whether you are discussing christianity, judaism, islam, or most any other religion. do we let our hearts and minds trust that there is even an element of truth to any of it? do we commit our spirts to obedience to those truths? will that faith be reciprocated with fulfilling of promises? there is nothing easy about the questions and the answers are even more challenging. you'll likely search these out from your birth into responsibility unto your slumber and be alternately certain and uncertain the entire journey.

is there a single humanly quantifiable condition that when satisfied produces salvation? how much faith is enough and how do you know when you've attained it? i couldn't tell you, but i don't think that necessarily makes the "system" immoral. ultimately i suppose if this christian "system" is actually gawd's the consequences are not even determined by any human's measure of faith, works, or combinations of the two - whether that be the estimation of the human himself or another human observing. those consequences are left in the hands of gawd who many christians say is the only one who can reckon the matter anyhow.

be well.

laeth
     
 
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