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  1. #11
    Senior Member Xyk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwn86 View Post
    Sir, do you not see the black and white nature of your convictions? I am not talking about religion or rebellion, but relationship. God is not partial, so someone cannot love God and hate his fellow man by his actions... loving God would include loving others, all of whom God loves. Religion is a sin as is rebellion, and God loves both regardless of this because it is about who God is, not who's done what. God is the reward we are all looking for, my friend.
    As a skeptic, I have to disagree. I mean, the crusades are a good example of a time when convictions and doing what was thought to be the will of God, therefore becoming closer to him, hurt and killed many many many people. Many religious terrorists love their god very much but clearly hate the people they are terrorizing. Yes, there have been terrorists from all different religions throughout history. Absolute conviction that one is right closes his mind to all other options.

    I don't see the black and white nature of my convictions. I don't have many. The closest things I have to certainty are just really dark shades of gray. I'm most certain that human life is valuable, but I also recognize that there is a very slight chance that it isn't.

  2. #12
    Senior Member Sanctus Iacobus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xyk View Post
    As a skeptic, I have to disagree. I mean, the crusades are a good example of a time when convictions and doing what was thought to be the will of God, therefore becoming closer to him, hurt and killed many many many people. Many religious terrorists love their god very much but clearly hate the people they are terrorizing. Yes, there have been terrorists from all different religions throughout history. Absolute conviction that one is right closes his mind to all other options.

    I don't see the black and white nature of my convictions. I don't have many. The closest things I have to certainty are just really dark shades of gray. I'm most certain that human life is valuable, but I also recognize that there is a very slight chance that it isn't.
    This is true what you say about absolute convictions. Consider, though, that absolution is a finished state. Absolute zero is the coldest temperature possible, and there is nothing colder, for instance.

    The one true God, however, is a being, the person that is Jesus Christ. It is not a religious state but someone with thoughts and emotions. We are made in God's image and likeness ("to be like") so we too are persons with thoughts and emotions.

    So it is not a thing to be grasped, or reached. It is not an absolute state of anything I speak of, but Jesus Christ the living God. What's important to know is that Jesus Christ is living at this ever moment, and if although we cannot see Jesus anymore (His body cannot be found because He rose from the dead) if you can incline your heart to believe this, you may pray and begin a relationship with Him.

    See, it is not a solid state thing, such is the word absolute. God is a person and very personal. God desires to have a relationship with His creation (being God and having infitude, why else would He create it?) and this is the purpose and meaning of life. In this we know human life is valuable--God came to earth in the form of His own creation (man) died to fulfill the perfection that no mortal man ever did or ever will, and rose from death... living this present moment solely for the purpose of having dynamic, living relationship with man... with you. You are valuable, sir. This life God offers is dynamic and moving... it is not a stale thing such is the word absolute, and it is certainly not about killing and death, but quite the opposite: new life through Jesus Christ and His love for you.

    I have some laundry to do so I probably won't respond any more tonight. God bless you!

  3. #13
    Senior Member esidebill's Avatar
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    Seems that you would gladly live a life of conviction then jwn? :p

  4. #14
    Senior Member Xyk's Avatar
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    I feel like I shouldn't say any more than this, lest someone get offended: You base all of this on one very large assumption, of which I am quite skeptical. I'm all for universal love, but not because it's how a magic invisible force does things, and it's my goal to be like him. I try to love universally so that everyone's lives are improved. I'm pretty much a secular humanist.

  5. #15
    Senior Member esidebill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xyk View Post
    I feel like I shouldn't say any more than this, lest someone get offended: You base all of this on one very large assumption, of which I am quite skeptical. I'm all for universal love, but not because it's how a magic invisible force does things, and it's my goal to be like him. I try to love universally so that everyone's lives are improved. I'm pretty much a secular humanist.
    I don't know why people expect any more from you You may not follow his God, but you're still a damn good person. Perhaps they just want your donations ;p

  6. #16
    Analytical Dreamer Coriolis's Avatar
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    Yes, quite.

    Just what constitutes a conviction, anyway? Originally, I thought in terms of principles -- like being honest, respecting one's elders, or sticking up for people who are being treated unfairly. In this context, asking what I would sacrifice for my convictions translates into asking what would cause me to go against these principles. jwn86 introduced some religious notions. Are ideas like "Jesus was God and died to save humanity" convictions, or beliefs? How does one sacrifice for these? Or are the sacrifices made in trying to persuade others to accept the same belief? Perhaps the OP could clarify.
    I've been called a criminal, a terrorist, and a threat to the known universe. But everything you were told is a lie. The truth is, they've taken our freedom, our home, and our future. The time has come for all humanity to take a stand...

  7. #17
    Senior Member Sanctus Iacobus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by esidebill View Post
    Seems that you would gladly live a life of conviction then jwn? :p
    My personal convictions are rather flimsy. I used to lie, cheat, and steal without remorse and I still feel like doing it at times. The only conviction I desire it to have faith in Jesus and to know Jesus more. While my personal convictions fail, Jesus' did not, so I trust in Jesus.

    Quote Originally Posted by Coriolis View Post
    Are ideas like "Jesus was God and died to save humanity" convictions, or beliefs? How does one sacrifice for these? Or are the sacrifices made in trying to persuade others to accept the same belief?
    Beliefs, although that's not an entirely true statement... Jesus died to save those who believe/trust/put their faith in Him. This is not an elitist mindset, but actually based on the character of God. God created man with self-control and gave man dominion, and God can't contradict Himself, so it is up to man to believe. Convictions and belief go hand in hand... the Holy Spirit convicts a person to change, believe in God for forgiveness and love, which allows that person to live a better quality of life. This process of conviction and repentance and further belief repeats itself throughout the life of a follower of Christ and nobody will be totally perfect until Christ returns to earth. Arguably the greatest Christian ever (Paul) speaks candidly about his internal struggle and outlines a mature person as one who can talk about their imperfections and strive forward to a better life without self-condemnation.

    Faith in Christ has little to do with self sacrifice. As the Bible says, you can give away everything you have and sacrifice yourself to be burned alive, but have no love, you have nothing. There is no greater love than to lay down one's life for one's friends. As Christ did this, if you have Christ, then you have faith in His sacrifice. No personal sacrifice is needed, nor would it be adequate to appease God's judgement anyways. All people are encouraged to come to Christ exactly as they are... everything required is already taken care of by the life of Jesus. After coming to Christ, if you enter a circumstance where you are persecuted or killed due to your faith in Christ (i.e. if you stay faithful) then you are rewarded, but again it has nothing to do with the individual's accomplishment like it would be in other religious beliefs. It is all about Jesus and faith in Jesus.

    Although, I must say that entering into the faith, there will be things a person sacrifices, but I would hardly call it a sacrifice. It's hard to explain, but I actually enjoy trading these things in for what God has to offer instead. It's exciting knowing He is the architect of life and has much greater things than what I was trying my best to come up with in the past.

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