Wow! Great post!I don't think God judges at all. I think that there is a natural Way that works best. Many possible paths within that way. We can choose to swim upstream or down. We can choose to manipulate the natural way for profit at the expense of other life. Whatever we choose sets up the circumstances of our life and determines the extent to which we connect with, walk with if you will, God. There are consequences to every choice we make- some are obvious and some aren't.
If we choose not to decide, or are oblivious to our ability to choose, the consequences are still the same. But if we consciously choose to align our intentions with, and actively participate with the Way we gain the ability to tap into the power source that creates and sustains the universe, and that's some kinda power!
I'm going to have to think about that Karen. What you're suggesting has very deep ramifications.
"Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual."
I don't believe ALL atheists, have this agenda, to challenge religions. I would say the majority just haven't been convinced by religion, so they get the atheist mark branded upon them... Something about the title atheist...
"Hi, yeah I'm 17th... I'm an atheist..." lol, I would never say that. I guess with some it could be a name to identify them, and because of this they want to live up to bringing as many from the religious side to the "atheist side" But I would suspect the majority of atheists couldn't give a rats butt, about challenging religion. But, I think how religious people hold on to their little titles oh so proudly. I'm a jew!! I'm a muslim! I'm a christian! It means something to them and they will hold on to it cause it apparently means something important to be able to call themselves by this name... I guess they expect everyone who doesn't believe to hang on to some title...
Deep ramifications, indeed. I am taking the intense beauty and grace of the cross into consideration.
...Until the end, of course - His Final Judgement.
I agreed with and loved the rest of your post.
I don't understand the necessity of Jesus death, or original sin, or the "plan of salvation." I know what Christians believe, and I know what the Bible says, but I don't understand the nuts and bolts of why and how.
Just a question: Does God actually do any judging at the "final judgement"? IOW, aside from judgement being passed, is there any debate where God makes judgement calls? You know, like instant replay on an iffy call?
I truly wish you would realize that true Christianity has nothing to do with titles or labels. At the second coming of Christ, I seriously doubt there will be any self-aggrandizement.
My favorite line in the above article:
Yet one critic, New York Times columnist Nicholas Kristof, calls for a truce: "We've suffered enough from religious intolerance that the last thing the world needs is irreligious intolerance."
Even the best apologetics won't sway those whose mind is made up. What science must inherently lack, religion has always provided. We are born into this crazy debate, and it will continue long after we are gone, and the only thing a believer could ever do to sway anyone's opinion is to embody that which she/he believes in the spirit of compassion, love, and the actions that are spawned by those truths.
I think another *good* possibility is that you will reject the idea of blood sacrifice altogether - as something humanity has outlived and outgrown... and that the plan of salvation may come to mean something else entirely. This still has everything to do with accepting Christ.The necessity of Jesus death was ... satisfying the law of blood sacrifice with his death on the cross.
If you are truly sincere in your studying, you'll eventually get the plan of salvation.
I think another *good* possibility is that you will reject the idea of blood sacrifice altogether - as something humanity has outlived and outgrown... and that the plan of salvation may come to mean something else entirely. This still has everything to do with accepting Christ.
I think it does.... To many. People seem to cling on and love titles... ooooh a title... goody goody gum drops! Titles In my own opinon mean jack. But alot more people seem to see titles, with more value and worth than deeds.