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  1. #111
    Lallygag Moderator Geoff's Avatar
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    Journey, do you intend to respond to my post asking if you grant the same authority for the bible to the other religions and their writings, or is just your own (and how by implication I should distinguish your religion from the others)

  2. #112
    Senior Member Journey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Journey, do you intend to respond to my post asking if you grant the same authority for the bible to the other religions and their writings, or is just your own (and how by implication I should distinguish your religion from the others)
    Geoff, I'm sorry, I still haven't seen that post.

    No, the Bible is unique.

    [QUOTE]First of all the Bible claims to be the Word of God Almighty. "The Word of the Lord endures forever" I Peter 1:25, "All Scripture is God-breathed" II Timothy 3:16, "For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" II Peter 1:21.

    Over 2,000 times in the Old Testament alone there are clauses such as, "And God spoke to Moses," "the Word of the Lord came unto Jonah" and "God said," Moreover, the Bible claims to be a record of the words and deeds of God, thus the Bible views itself as God's Word.

    The mere fact that the Bible claims to be the Word of God does not prove that it is such for there are other books that make similar claims. The difference is that the Scriptures contain indisputable evidence as being the Word of God.

    One reason that the Bible is different from other books is its unity. Although this book was composed by men, its unity betrays the hand of the Almighty. The Bible was written over a period of about 1,500 years by more than 40 different human authors. These authors came from a variety of backgrounds, including Joshua (a military general), Daniel (a prime minister), Peter (a fisherman) and Nehemiah (a cupbearer).

    The authors of the various books wrote in different places, such as the wilderness (Moses), prison (Paul), Patmos exile (John). The biblical writings were composed on three different continents (Africa, Asia and Europe) and in three different languages (Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek).

    The contents of the Bible deal with many controvesial subjects. Yet the Bible is a unity. From beginning to end, there's one unfolding story of God's plan of salvation for mankind. This salvation is through the person of Jesus Christ (John 14:6). Jesus Himself testified that He was the theme of the entire Bible.

    "Search the Scriiptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of Me. . .For had ye believed Moses, ye would have believed Me; for he wrote of Me. But if ye believe not his writings how shall ye believe My words?" (John 5:39,46,7).

    In another place, "And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, He expounded unto them in all the Scriptures the things concerning Himself." (Luke 24-27).

    The Old Testament is the preparation (Isaiah 40:3). The Gospels are the manifestation (John 1:29). The Book of Acts is the propagation (Acts1:8). The Epistles give the explanation (Colossians 1:7). The Bible is all about Jesus.

    The entire Bible is a unity with each part needing the others to be complete. Dr. W.F. Albright puts it this way: "To the writers of the New Testament, the Hebrew Bible was Holy Scripture and they were the direct heirs of its prophets. It is, accordingly, quite impossible to understand the New Testament without recognizing that its purpose was to supplement and explain the Hebrew Bible.

    Any attempt to go back to the sources of Christianity without accepting the entire Bible as our guide is thus doomed to failure." (cited by Roger T. Forster and V. Paul Marston, That's a Good Question, p. 67.

    Lest anyone think this isn't something marvelous, we'd like to give you this challenge. Find ten people from your local area who have similar educational backgrounds, all speak the same language, and are from basically the same culture, then separate them and ask them to write their opinion on only on controversial subject, such as the meaning of life.

    When they have finished, compare the conclusions of these ten writers. Do they agree with each other? Of course not. But the Bible did not consist of merely ten authors, but 40. It was not written in one generation but over a period of 1500 years, not by authors with the same education, culture and language, but with vastly different education, many different cultures, from three continents and three different languages, and finally not jut one subject but hundreds.

    And yet the Bible is a unity. There is a complete harmony, which cannot be explained by coincidence or collusion. The unity of the Bible is a strong argument in favor of its divine inspiration.

    The unity of the Scriptures is only one reason among many which supports the Bible's claim to be the divine Word of God. Others which could be explained in detail are the testimony of the early Church, the witness of history and archaeology, and the evidence of changed lives throughout the centuries, to name but a few.

    These factors led the great archaeologist, W.F. Albright, to conclude, "The Bible towers in content above all earlier religious literature; and it towers just as impressively over all susequent literature in the direct simplicity of its message and the catholicity of its appeal to men of all lands and times" (The Christian Century, November, 1958).

    The Bible is special. It is unique. No other book has any such credentials. No other book even comes close...

    From: Josh McDowell and Don Stewart, Answers to Tough Questions skeptics ask about the Christian Faith, Here's Life, 1980, p.1-3.[\QUOTE]

    For a more complete apologetic on the Bible as God's inerrent Word one good source is Josh McDowell's Evidence that Demands a Verdict.

    You can distinguish Christianity from all other religions by it being the only one that has a solution for man's sin problem and resulting alienation from God unconverted man has. Anyone who says that they don't do wrong is a liar and the truth is not in him. Christianity is the only religion with a savior that takes away the sins of man and makes us right with God again if we accept His substitutionary death on the Cross as payment for our sins as the only begotten Son of the Father God.

    It makes absolutely no sense. What are we that God should want us back so badly that He let His Son die for us? It is all so unbelievable, no one could have possibly made it up. It's like a fairy tale. Christians'll all live happily ever after. Only this is the real thing.
    "My Journey is my Destination."

    "Today Counts Forever." R.C. Sproul

  3. #113
    Senior Member Wild horses's Avatar
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    TBH I really don't see what the point of making people study the bible would be... What would it achieve... The Bible is a book that talks about spirtual concepts and so to study it the way you would shakespear would be pointless and in fact possibly even counter-productive. I it to be left the way it is and for people to come to the Bible out of choice and it to be 'studied' with an understanding of the spirtual dimension of the messgaes behind it
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  4. #114
    Senior Member Jeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Journey View Post
    It's like a fairy tale. Christians'll all live happily ever after. Only this is the real thing.
    How selfish. Conform to our way of living and you'll live eternally. God is a masochist in Christianity, to be sure.

    All of your evidence comes from the bible itself. What I don't understand is this: If man is so wrong, then how is it that we selectively chose these men to lead us to the truth? Why do they have a say in this? How do we know that they weren't just making this up, or if some of the authors were personas of the same man? How do we know that the books that have been selectively chosen to be canon are the truth any more than those that are not?

    You're viewing this from the perspective of someone who is already entrenched in Christianity. I was going down that road, but I broke out of it when I was told that "Pokemon was Satanic" by one of the people in my church. I realized, at the tender age of 11, that Christianity was full of people like that - people who use the bible to back up their own twisted worldviews. Could it not be that the bible was written with the same sort of agenda in mind? I don't want to trust my eternal self to mankind, who we know, even according to the bible, is full of sinners. They claim to be "inspired by god", but what proof of that do we have? Do we trust sinful man with our salvation? There are plenty of passages in the bible that were written, either by the original authors or by twisted translators, to change the words of God into a way of proving that their actions were right.

    The bible has been and is used as a justification for all kinds of sins, because "God" says that it's okay. How can we trust a text like that as a spiritual foundation? How can we look at it and say "This is the absolute truth"? I think that the true answer about God is found deep within ourselves. Because if the bible is as you say, the "ultimate truth", then one passage makes the idea that God lies within us true - God created us in his image. And if he created us, then obviously, a small part of him must rest within us. And in that case, I'd rather follow my own soul's path to salvation than rely on the words of long-dead men.

    It's time for humanity to make up its own path to salvation. Even if there is a God, we as a species need to grow up, or we're going to lead ourselves to our own damnation.

    Oh, right, this topic is about why we should know the bible. Sorry for going off to the right.
    "Can you set me free from this dark inner world? Save me now, last beats in the soul.."

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  5. #115
    Senior Member Journey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jeremy View Post
    How selfish. Conform to our way of living and you'll live eternally. God is a masochist in Christianity, to be sure.

    All of your evidence comes from the bible itself. What I don't understand is this: If man is so wrong, then how is it that we selectively chose these men to lead us to the truth? Why do they have a say in this? How do we know that they weren't just making this up, or if some of the authors were personas of the same man? How do we know that the books that have been selectively chosen to be canon are the truth any more than those that are not?

    You're viewing this from the perspective of someone who is already entrenched in Christianity. I was going down that road, but I broke out of it when I was told that "Pokemon was Satanic" by one of the people in my church. I realized, at the tender age of 11, that Christianity was full of people like that - people who use the bible to back up their own twisted worldviews. Could it not be that the bible was written with the same sort of agenda in mind? I don't want to trust my eternal self to mankind, who we know, even according to the bible, is full of sinners. They claim to be "inspired by god", but what proof of that do we have? Do we trust sinful man with our salvation? There are plenty of passages in the bible that were written, either by the original authors or by twisted translators, to change the words of God into a way of proving that their actions were right.

    The bible has been and is used as a justification for all kinds of sins, because "God" says that it's okay. How can we trust a text like that as a spiritual foundation? How can we look at it and say "This is the absolute truth"? I think that the true answer about God is found deep within ourselves. Because if the bible is as you say, the "ultimate truth", then one passage makes the idea that God lies within us true - God created us in his image. And if he created us, then obviously, a small part of him must rest within us. And in that case, I'd rather follow my own soul's path to salvation than rely on the words of long-dead men.

    It's time for humanity to make up its own path to salvation. Even if there is a God, we as a species need to grow up, or we're going to lead ourselves to our own damnation.

    Oh, right, this topic is about why we should know the bible. Sorry for going off to the right.
    Man, oh man, have you got it all wrong. Christianity is not about conforming to a set of rules and regulations or pointing out faults and failings and suspected evils. It's about a relationship with God that has His Holy Spirit living inside of you transforming you by the renewing of your mind to what is God's pleasing and perfect will. Sometimes that involves a lot of self-discipline. The Holy Spirit helps you change from the inside out into the image of Christ. (More self-discipline.) Fake Christians are the ones who live not understanding or doing that.

    You never get close to His perfection and go on sinning til the day you die, but you become cleaner and cleaner on the inside, like washing a cup. You wouldn't just wash the outside and say it was ready for use, but you would wash the inside first to make it ready for use.

    Yes, I used the Bible to prove Itself, but I could use archaeology, testimony, the canon... but you are not open for these either.

    In fact, you didn't really want to hear from me at all so I will leave you with this thought:

    Christians aren't selfish, we want people to go to heaven, that's why we talk about Jesus death and resurrection and what it means to everyone who might want to hear. We would be selfish if we didn't.
    "My Journey is my Destination."

    "Today Counts Forever." R.C. Sproul

  6. #116
    Lallygag Moderator Geoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Journey View Post
    Man, oh man, have you got it all wrong. Christianity is not about conforming to a set of rules and regulations or pointing out faults and failings and suspected evils. It's about a relationship with God that has His Holy Spirit living inside of you transforming you by the renewing of your mind to what is God's pleasing and perfect will. Sometimes that involves a lot of self-discipline. The Holy Spirit helps you change from the inside out into the image of Christ. (More self-discipline.) Fake Christians are the ones who live not understanding or doing that.

    You never get close to His perfection and go on sinning til the day you die, but you become cleaner and cleaner on the inside, like washing a cup. You wouldn't just wash the outside and say it was ready for use, but you would wash the inside first to make it ready for use.

    Yes, I used the Bible to prove Itself, but I could use archaeology, testimony, the canon... but you are not open for these either.

    In fact, you didn't really want to hear from me at all so I will leave you with this thought:

    Christians aren't selfish, we want people to go to heaven, that's why we talk about Jesus death and resurrection and what it means to everyone who might want to hear. We would be selfish if we didn't.
    How do you feel (or react) to the other religions that claim that their's, too, is the one true religion. Do you accept that they might be right?

  7. #117
    Senior Member Journey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    How do you feel (or react) to the other religions that claim that their's, too, is the one true religion. Do you accept that they might be right?
    I feel sad and react with sorrow for them. It is as if we are all on a sinking ship and each person from each religion has put their faith in their religions's lifesaver. The ship sinks and I am the only survivor because I had the only true lifesaver--Jesus. The rest perished because their religions lifesavers (books, ideas, ideals and statues) could not save them. (You can have all the faith in the world, but unless it is in the right object, it will not save you.)

    So, no I do not accept that anything other than Christianity is the one true faith.

    Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" John 14:6

    What is your purpose in asking these questions of me?
    "My Journey is my Destination."

    "Today Counts Forever." R.C. Sproul

  8. #118
    Lallygag Moderator Geoff's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Journey View Post
    I feel sad and react with sorrow for them. It is as if we are all on a sinking ship and each person from each religion has put their faith in their religions's lifesaver. The ship sinks and I am the only survivor because I had the only true lifesaver--Jesus. The rest perished because their religions lifesavers (books, ideas, ideals and statues) could not save them. (You can have all the faith in the world, but unless it is in the right object, it will not save you.)

    So, no I do not accept that anything other than Christianity is the one true faith.

    Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me" John 14:6

    What is your purpose in asking these questions of me?
    Actually, because I was interested in your view on religion. I understand it now, thanks. You believe you have the one true faith, and your evidence is the contents of the bible and what you have been taught.

    Everyone else has it wrong, because the bible says so.

  9. #119
    Senior Member Journey's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Geoff View Post
    Actually, because I was interested in your view on religion. I understand it now, thanks. You believe you have the one true faith, and your evidence is the contents of the bible and what you have been taught.

    Everyone else has it wrong, because the bible says so.
    Because God says so. My evidence is my relationship with God. And God taught me most of what I know of the Bible personally.
    "My Journey is my Destination."

    "Today Counts Forever." R.C. Sproul

  10. #120
    Senior Member Jeremy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Journey View Post
    Man, oh man, have you got it all wrong. Christianity is not about conforming to a set of rules and regulations or pointing out faults and failings and suspected evils. It's about a relationship with God that has His Holy Spirit living inside of you transforming you by the renewing of your mind to what is God's pleasing and perfect will. Sometimes that involves a lot of self-discipline. The Holy Spirit helps you change from the inside out into the image of Christ. (More self-discipline.) Fake Christians are the ones who live not understanding or doing that.

    You never get close to His perfection and go on sinning til the day you die, but you become cleaner and cleaner on the inside, like washing a cup. You wouldn't just wash the outside and say it was ready for use, but you would wash the inside first to make it ready for use.

    Yes, I used the Bible to prove Itself, but I could use archaeology, testimony, the canon... but you are not open for these either.

    In fact, you didn't really want to hear from me at all so I will leave you with this thought:

    Christians aren't selfish, we want people to go to heaven, that's why we talk about Jesus death and resurrection and what it means to everyone who might want to hear. We would be selfish if we didn't.
    It's not that I don't want to hear from you, and I didn't mean my post as an attack, really. I just want to understand you, to understand your reality. I don't really think that all Christians are selfish.. maybe self-centered is a better term. Sometimes, you can seem so convinced of the truth that your message is lost on those who may be willing to listen, but who have doubts. I understand that your faith may be unwaivering, but for some people, unwaivering faith may make them believe that you are unreasonable. Christians who are unwaivering in their belief often have a tendency to ignore contradictions within their own faith.

    As your post says though, our ways of religion really aren't that different. I know God, at least my vision of God, resides within me, and guides me. However, my knowledge of this stems from my own self-reflection, and I refuse to trust the words of men to guide me to this truth. I have to follow my own heart - and God's wisdom - to find my path. I don't know which of us is right, but I respect your decision to follow your own path. Maybe we'll see each other on the other side, or maybe there isn't another side. Who knows?
    "Can you set me free from this dark inner world? Save me now, last beats in the soul.."

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