What Makes Christianity Relevant Today?

Discussion in 'Christianity' started by lunamoth, Sep 12, 2008.

  1. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Matthew 24:14 14And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

    The writers of the synoptic Gospels certainly seemed to believe that the Kingdom was immanent. By the time John was written Christians saw that it was taking some time and were settling in for the long haul.


    Matthew 4: 17 From that time on Jesus began to preach, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near."


    Daniel 2: 44 "In the time of those kings, the God of heaven will set up a kingdom that will never be destroyed, nor will it be left to another people. It will crush all those kingdoms and bring them to an end, but it will itself endure forever.

    Daniel writes about the troubles of his own time and as an apocalyptic writer he writes to instill hope in the people. The early Christians, and Christians still today, retain much of the apocalyptic views reflective of this time of war, foreign occupation and corruption. Hope is in the new era of God, when God's justice prevails and the corruption and oppression by human rulers ends.


    How does it help us here if it is in heaven?

    God has always reigned in heaven, not just starting in 1914.

    And what help does being put on notice do?


    What is the response to the good news?

    If I'm getting you correctly, the good news is that Jesus reigns in heaven (since 1914), the response to this is to believe and preach that Jesus reigns in heaven (since 1914).

    Is there anything else you would like to add to this summary?
     
  2. wil

    wil UNeyeR1 Moderator

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    Namaste Luna,

    I guess that is my personal cross, I believe Christianity is for Christians. We are totally relevant, but not for everyone.

    Our biggest challenge is to act like Christians.

    The bumper sticker "Jesus save me from your followers" wasn't made, isn't sold, isn't put on cars because it doesn't resonate
     
  3. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    I think it is very relevant to myself of course, and so it also impacts on those around me. As Dondi points out, since Christianity is very much a world religion, its continued presence impacts the world. However, growing numbers of people would say that it is not relevant, and not necessary, for modern life. I probably can't really say anything to that, only do.

    I'm not sure I would say 'salvation' as my answer. I think that salvation does come through Christ, but not necessarily through Christianity. I think even the RCC would say that salvation is not limited to baptized Christians.

    So, instead I'll say it's grace. There is of course grace outside of Christianity too, but what I mean is what I consider a unique understanding of grace and one that, if absorbed as our worldview and with the help of the Holy Spirit, has a transformative power that makes all the other parts of Jesus' teachings into the living water, the commandment to love, to forgive, to be charitable and forebearing, to give up our self and live in Christ.

    The thing about grace is that it is unmerited...unconditional. Even within Christianity we have a difficult time with the unconventional wisdom of unmerited favor, unconditional love. It is not as the world gives, it is not quid pro quo, it is not a product of evolution.


    I agree with mee on this one, and with path of one: the good news is Matt4:17 "From that time on Jesus began to preach, 'Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is near.'"

    The veil is torn from top to bottom and there is nothing between me and God. I only need to turn and see.

    The response to this is to take the love of God back out into the world. We participate in a cycle of eternal love, dipping from a bottomless source.

    We can keep discussing into Saturday if you want!
     
  4. Dream

    Dream Well-Known Member

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    No, I'm just admitting that lately I've been in doubt.
    Sorry. This comes from Psalm 51 and is referred to in Romans 3:4 : Psalm 51:4 "Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done that which is evil in thy sight, so that thou art justified in thy sentence and blameless in thy judgment." The issue being raised is that the LORD's judgment against adam will be proven correct. This is likely why confession is important. IMO, Christianity is supposed to, somewhere down the road, finally support this divine proof. Romans 3:4 "By no means! Let God be true though every man be false, as it is written, 'That thou mayest be justified in thy words, and prevail when thou art judged.'" (I'm not proving anything, just pointing out a line of thought.) I think it is a subject that appears many times and in many places throughout the Bible, for instance: Job 40:6-14.

    Thank you. I am in transition -- free, in fact. I have been in three kinds of Christian meetings and learned different things in each, but the thing I've learned most recently is that faith is all about attitude. It about how you respond to God when the Red Sea is in front and the Egyptians are at your back. (I don't have a lot of faith) I also learned that 'Antichrist' is when we're hung up on 'I'm right and you're wrong', which I posted about recently, citing 1 John 1:5-10 and I'll cite 1 Corinthians 8:1. Judging that others are not in Christ on the basis of what they know -- this is against Christ, IMO.
     
  5. sonoman

    sonoman Interfaith Forums

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    Christianity contains the Gospels which contain the words of Jesus which contain the truth about God and humanity. No other religion has the truth about God and humanity's relationship to God. No other spiritual leader knew who the Father really was yet it is true Christianity fails to deliver when blind faith in the words of men fall to historical exposure as the writings of fallible men. Something more is needed and that is gnosis and science combined. When both paths to knowledge unite, then we will have something great and for me that has happened through my Christian path.
     
  6. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    very true ,and the will of JEHOVAH is that the GOODNEWS will be preached in all the inhabited earth .
    matthew 24;14 matthew 28;19-20


    and he is having a GREAT CROWD from all nations working along with his annointed ones, and the purpose is to get the job done , and those annointed ones and the GREAT CROWD are working along with his son Jesus christ , and they are all in unity of purpose .


    and it is the will of the Almighty.


    and as ROMANS 10;13-15 says


    For "everyone who calls on the name of Jehovah will be saved."

    However, how will they call on him in whom they have not put faith?

    How, in turn, will they put faith in him of whom they have not heard?

    How, in turn, will they hear without someone to preach?

    How, in turn, will they preach unless they have been sent forth?

    Just as it is written: "How comely are the feet of those who declare good news of good things!"



    yes its all happening in the time of the end :) and it is VERY GOOD :)
     
  7. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    it helps us because as a reigning king Jesus is directing a great preaching work ,


    and yes you are correct ,God has always been in heaven.
    but that heavenly kingdom that was established and set up in 1914 ,inline with bible prophecy and chronology, was not set up until 1914 , it is spoken about in the last book of the bible in REVELATION chapter 12 .

    The Symbolic woman is giving birth to GODS KINGDOM .

    and that heavenly kingdom has now got Gods protection .
    its all happening in this time of the end .

    And I heard a loud voice in heaven say:
    "Now have come to pass the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our God and the authority of his Christ, REVELATION 12;10

    Yes Jesus is now a reigning king in that heavenly kingdom, and he had to WAIT for that kingship , when he went back to heaven years ago after being put to death ,he had to wait for his kingship, he didnt get kingship right away , not until 1914


    the time of waiting at God’s right hand in heaven ended for the "Servant," Jesus Christ, in that autumn of 1914 C.E. (Psalm 110:1, 2; Hebrews 10:12, 13)

    For him the year 1914 marked the commencement of a ‘time of beginning’ in the active exercise of his kingly rights.

    Then, right on time, the Messianic kingdom of God was born in the heavens, too high above the feet of the Gentiles for them to trample upon in defiance of God.

    (Revelation 12:1-5; Luke 21:24; Ezekiel 21:25-27)


    responding to the goodnews about the kingdom means that we are putting out trust in that kingdom and its reigning king.

    because soon that reigning king JESUS CHRIST will go into action and put the sheep on his right and the goats on his left ,

    when he comes with his holy angels to Judge the inhabited earth people will already have proved what they are by their actions . either sheeplike or goatlike . but only JEHOVAH and JESUS are the judges of that .

    but NOW we are making our choices , to go along with Gods kingdom, or to reject it .

    it is very GOODNEWS, so mee is going along with Gods purpose for the earth

    that was my response to hearing about the GOODNEWS . i am symbolicly speaking getting into the ark ,it is the only way to SALVATION .

    And Jesus himself did say that our times would be very much like the days of Noah,
    Noah preached about a coming flood and the way to protect themselves was to get into the ark , but they thought he was joking and they TOOK NO NOTE

    its the same to day , our way to salvation is to put out trust in GODS KINGDOM and the reigning king JESUS CHRIST


    It will be to late when Jesus comes with the holy angels to judge the whole earth .

    .
    now is the time psalm 2;12



    so listening to Jesus is the way to go , and its all in the bible .

    but as others have mentioned , we also have to seek righteousness and seek meekness.
    having a christion personality is also what it is all about. and it is all in the bible to help us .



    being a part of the GREAT CROWD is the place to be
    revelation 7;9-10
    notice they are all waving their symbolic palm branches to welcome Jesus as a reigning king :)













     
  8. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Only Christ offers direct contact for man, to the Father. No other faith dares offer that promise...that's good enough for me.
     
  9. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

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    In certain varieties of Paganism and in mysticism in a variety of faiths, we are told we can reach God directly. I still think that is possible because of Christ (the eternal Christ) but just pointing out that there are other religions that claim direct communication between humans and God/dess.
     
  10. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    And Jesus approached and spoke to them, saying: "All authority has been given me in heaven and on the earth.

    19 Go therefore and make disciples of people of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the holy spirit,

    20 teaching them to observe all the things I have commanded YOU. And, look! I am with YOU all the days until the conclusion of the system of things."

    matthew 28;19-20

    that command from Jesus is still relavent for today, sticking to what Jesus taught is the way to go .



    but many who claim to be christan followers of christ , (religious leaders)have added many manmade thoughts and gone away from what Jesus REALLY taught.



    but those who are doing the will of God are out there and they are faithful ones matthew 24;45-47


    mee has found them:)
     
  11. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    Do they offer redemption on a grand scale? I guess that was the point I was making. Certain aspects of Wicca, for example, offer union, but not Comnunion, with the dieties.
     
  12. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    What Makes Christianity Relevant Today?


    the gathering of a GREAT CROWD from all nations revelation 7;9-10
    who will get through the GREAT TRIBULATION revelation 7;14

    matthew 24;14

    its all happening on a worldwide scale, and Jesus is directing the preaching work to gather these ones in unity :) and its very good
     
  13. path_of_one

    path_of_one Embracing the Mystery

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    In order to answer the question, I'd need to know what is "redemption on a grand scale"? Most Christians think salvation is based on belief and/or works- that is- our choice to accept or not. Redemption is therefore based on both God's grace and our own acceptance of it. (Not saying this is my idea, but it's the party line I hear most often.)

    Most varieties of Paganism I've studied just think we are all bound for the Summerlands and then more lives later, and union with God is possible for everyone. The "why" this is- that's a more dicey question and a lot of folks don't really care to answer it, I think. But there were ideas about self-sacrificing gods...

    The second thing I wonder is how you differentiate between "union" and "communion"? If union is "the act of joining, or making one, two things" and communion is "intimate fellowship" (both from the dictionary), I would say most varieties of both Wicca and Druidry offer both. In fact, for many, the main point of ritual is to build relationship... fellowship... with god and goddess, and for many, this leads to a unity with all beings and with the Divine. In fact, most Pagans I know believe much more strongly in intimate fellowship with deity than most Christians I know... conversation is more often seen as a two-way street, and the gods/goddesses are less distant. I'm not saying that is better or worse, but simply what it is.

    I can't see how either communion or union is uniquely Christian. Redemption on a grand scale was floating around as a belief before Christ as well... I figure Christ is eternal, so all this stuff wasn't necessarily "new" when Jesus came on the scene as an embodied Christ. Therefore, it isn't problematic to me to think of these things as not uniquely Christian, yet stemming from Christ Itself. I realize, however, I am in a minority view on the matter.
     
  14. GlorytoGod

    GlorytoGod There is a River

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    the Truth is just as relevant today yesterday and forever
     
  15. mee

    mee Interfaith Forums

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    truth ......

    Jehovah, the God of Truth.

    Jehovah is "the God of truth." (Ps 31:5)

    He is faithful in all his dealings. His promises are sure, for he cannot lie. (Nu 23:19; 1Sa 15:29; Ps 89:35; Tit 1:2; Heb 6:17, 18)

    He judges according to truth, that is, according to the way things really are, and not on the basis of outward appearance. (Ro 2:2; compare Joh 7:24.)


    Everything that emanates from him is pure and without defect. His judicial decisions, law, commandments, and word are truth. (Ne 9:13; Ps 19:9; 119:142, 151, 160)

    They are always right and proper, and they stand in opposition to all unrighteousness and error.
     
  16. Dondi

    Dondi Well-Known Member

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    Redemption is all about communion/union with the Divine. It's about the elevation of the spirit to the Ideal, operating in the Realm of the Spirit, and making means to sustain thus as much as we can. It is recognizing that a life-change is necessary. The concept of self-denial must be complimented with a desire to love and serve others. Very hard to do with some people.

    The object of the Law is not to thrust upon us some set of rules and regs to follow, but to get us into the habit of doing good, so that eventually it will become our nature to do so. It's a tug of war, to be sure, we'll slip sometimes, maybe a lot. The important thing is not to give up. That is the process shown in I Peter 1:4-8 where we become partakers of the divine nature:

    "Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity. For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ."

    This is the realm where God will operate with people. And furthermore, there is a great latitude of Grace that is available, and I dare say that not in a merely Christian construct. I would venture to say that if one is truly seeking God with all their heart that they will find themselves in such a state regardless of the paradigm for which they are familiar. I read too many testimonies not to believe it true.
     
  17. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    Good post Dondi. Just to clarify, I was not saying that grace is only within Christianity (far from it!).
     
  18. lunamoth

    lunamoth Episcopalian

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    I think you need to read further than Matt 24 mee.

    It does not sound like God waited until 1914 to declare victory.
     
  19. Dor

    Dor Bible Thumper

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    Hmm let me think of a tactful way to answer this. :p
     
  20. Quahom1

    Quahom1 What was the question?

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    No tact required on this one.

    Hope, instead of a fatalistic resignation to the way things are (and they are bad, and getting worse).
     

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