Apologetics - A Walk On The Wild Side

Redeemed

Well-known member
Is OK -- I dont know if you read the whole post it was pretty long but the message I try and bring is the message of Christ isnt only about what God can do for us it is about what God can do in us by a Loving heart. You are not the only one who misunderstands me.
I think for us old guys doing this is good for our brains, to keep our minds functioning so they don't go stagnant.
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Your thread does not appear to have gotten too "wild" while I was away! :D

Were you wanting to take our dialogue on the Bible further or have we (already) wrapped things up to your contentment?


I believe the text to which you refer is 2 Tim 3:16-17. Based on your comments above, we have very different approaches to the Bible... I would categorize parts of it as inspiring rather than inspired and the whole as culturally-bound rather than timeless. As such, its profitability is limited... it is thus best used as paradigm rather than prescription. Themes of liberation, justice, forgiveness, care for the poor and downtrodden, maintaining hope through pain and suffering, etc. are intermingled with some truly disturbing ideas and practices that need to be filtered out through a critical lens that is sensitive to the real harm these have caused people through the centuries. What remains are inspiring stories that can help people navigate the uncertainties, disappointments and tribulations of life... as they have for nearly three thousand years.
Good to have you back Jonathan! I hope you had a wonderful sabbatical And holidays.

I'm ready to dig deeper and get a better understanding of your approach to the Bible. I also believe this can help me to better understand of my approached the Bible.

I've read your post on your ideas about the Bible several times. I think I can see where you're coming from and I can understand why you feel that way about the Bible. But I don't want to jump to any conclusions or make any judgments on your understanding of the Bible. I'm very interested in finding out why you feel this way. It's obvious you given this a lot of thought and I'm sure I'm going to be able to learn a thing or two from you.

This part right here.. "are intermingled with some truly disturbing ideas and practices that need to be filtered out through a critical lens that is sensitive to the real harm these have caused people through the centuries." I've heard before and I think I get the overall drift of what you're communicating.

How about we start on a positive note? For instance what do you like best about the Bible? What your favorite book of the Bible? Who's your favorite biblical character in the Bible? Or anything else that you like about the Bible.

Unless of course you have a better idea which would be fine with me.

I'm really looking forward to this. ;)
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Good to have you back Jonathan! I hope you had a wonderful sabbatical And holidays.

I'm ready to dig deeper and get a better understanding of your approach to the Bible. I also believe this can help me to better understand of my approached the Bible.

I've read your post on your ideas about the Bible several times. I think I can see where you're coming from and I can understand why you feel that way about the Bible. But I don't want to jump to any conclusions or make any judgments on your understanding of the Bible. I'm very interested in finding out why you feel this way. It's obvious you given this a lot of thought and I'm sure I'm going to be able to learn a thing or two from you.

This part right here.. "are intermingled with some truly disturbing ideas and practices that need to be filtered out through a critical lens that is sensitive to the real harm these have caused people through the centuries." I've heard before and I think I get the overall drift of what you're communicating.

How about we start on a positive note? For instance what do you like best about the Bible? What your favorite book of the Bible? Who's your favorite biblical character in the Bible? Or anything else that you like about the Bible.

Unless of course you have a better idea which would be fine with me.

I'm really looking forward to this. ;)
Or we could jump right into the nitty-gritty with:

The Attributes of the Bible
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
Good to have you back Jonathan! I hope you had a wonderful sabbatical And holidays.

I'm ready to dig deeper and get a better understanding of your approach to the Bible. I also believe this can help me to better understand of my approached the Bible.

I've read your post on your ideas about the Bible several times. I think I can see where you're coming from and I can understand why you feel that way about the Bible. But I don't want to jump to any conclusions or make any judgments on your understanding of the Bible. I'm very interested in finding out why you feel this way. It's obvious you given this a lot of thought and I'm sure I'm going to be able to learn a thing or two from you.

This part right here.. "are intermingled with some truly disturbing ideas and practices that need to be filtered out through a critical lens that is sensitive to the real harm these have caused people through the centuries." I've heard before and I think I get the overall drift of what you're communicating.

How about we start on a positive note? For instance what do you like best about the Bible? What your favorite book of the Bible? Who's your favorite biblical character in the Bible? Or anything else that you like about the Bible.

Unless of course you have a better idea which would be fine with me.

I'm really looking forward to this. ;)
Thanks, glad to be back! Holidays were relaxing and sabbatical productive... but alas, back to the grind (ie work). So my short answer to your questions about what I like best would be those parts of the Bible where the themes I mentioned can be found. In terms of favorite book/character it would be Genesis/Joseph for the Hebrew Bible and Luke/Jesus for the New Testament. I'll be back this evening... in the meantime, what are your favorite book(s) and who are your favorite character(s)? Looking forward to this, as well!

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Thanks, glad to be back! Holidays were relaxing and sabbatical productive... but alas, back to the grind (ie work). So my short answer to your questions about what I like best would be those parts of the Bible where the themes I mentioned can be found. In terms of favorite book/character it would be Genesis/Joseph for the Hebrew Bible and Luke/Jesus for the New Testament. I'll be back this evening... in the meantime, what are your favorite book(s) and who are your favorite character(s)? Looking forward to this, as well!

Kind regards,
Jonathan

I'm also interested in the themes you mentioned insofar as having you explain them to me. But I thought this might be a way to break the ice.

To be honest with you I've never really thought about what Old Testament book I liked best or what Old Testament character I like best. So I had to think and come up with one. I definitely like your answer. There's so much for us in Genesis and Joseph is just an amazing character. So after thinking about it for a while I also chose Genesis with Jacob for my favorite character. I can totally relate to Jacob.

And once again your answer for the New Testament is dynamite, book of Luke, and what better character could there possibly be in the New Testament than Jesus. This one wasn't hard for me to answer it all. Romans is my favorite book and Romans chapter 8 is my favorite chapter. Paul and his teaching about Jesus is my favorite subject with the emphasis being upon Jesus.
 

Gary Mac

Well-known member
I think for us old guys doing this is good for our brains, to keep our minds functioning so they don't go stagnant.
Yeah I call that going into spiritual retirement, retired in a pew where one stops learning. How many life changing sermons can one endure without repeatedly hearing the same messages over and over?

God cannot put into one a responsible moral being, the disposition that was in Jesus Christ, until one is conscious that he needs it.

It is so funny how some here will put others on ignore because they are so insecure in who they are they cant handle anything foreign to their own understanding and close the mind and go no further than that pew with limited knowledge. Many here put me on ignore because they cant handle something they have not considered in themselves about God and His son, considering it blaspheme to actually be that person of Christ anointed of God that God sent Jesus to show us what that is to walk as He walks and have His same mind.
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Many here put me on ignore because they cant handle something they have not considered in themselves about God and His son, considering it blaspheme to actually be that person of Christ anointed of God that God sent Jesus to show us what that is to walk as He walks and have His same mind.
Gary, Gary, Gary there's no way in the world you could have a clue why anyone would put you on ignore. Gary take a look at the sentence that you wrote above. I understand that it makes sense to you but a lot of people just might wonder what you're talking. And that's only one sentence when you start putting together several paragraphs of your stuff It just starts getting a little overwhelming. I know it makes sense to you and I understand you have your opinion why it doesn't make sense to anyone else... but just consider for a moment that you're might wrong.

So you may be the reason why they put you on ignore.
 

Gary Mac

Well-known member
Gary, Gary, Gary there's no way in the world you could have a clue why anyone would put you on ignore. Gary take a look at the sentence that you wrote above. I understand that it makes sense to you but a lot of people just might wonder what you're talking. And that's only one sentence when you start putting together several paragraphs of your stuff It just starts getting a little overwhelming. I know it makes sense to you and I understand you have your opinion why it doesn't make sense to anyone else... but just consider for a moment that you're might wrong.

So you may be the reason why they put you on ignore.
I understand perfectly why they put me on ignore. It is what I repeat what Jesus said we should be like him and will be if we follow him in his standards, and that stirs the religious minds to anger who has a different agenda then to follow the way of Jesus to be like him in the Father.

You say I just might be wrong in that, but for me that isn;t even a consideration.
Thank God it is against the law to be crucified these days for heresy.

In summing up our Lords teachings it is that relationship which he demands that is an impossible feat unless God has done His supernatural work in you that He did in Jesus. Religious minds dont want to hear that.

Im not here for a popularity contest, God is not after perfecting me to be a specimen in His showcase He has gotten me to the place where He can reveal Himself in me just as He reveled Himself in Jesus by identification with our Father who is God.

Why do you think God sent people like Moses, Abraham, Jesus, anyway, only for a good read with sympathetic values to form beliefs from?

I know I am blunt and that is harsh for some whose feelings hang on a thin thread. But that is just who I am. Cut to the heart of it. I think that was the reason God sent me into prisons to counsel with inmates for over 25 years because I dont mind checking and correcting a con when he tries to con me.

Every single one of Jesus disciples put him on ignore, and flat out denied to be identified with him in his trials and tribulations. He was blunt to. And Sure that bothered Jesus, he wept over it, not because he was going to a cross to be tortured for his stance in the Father but that they did not get his message for who they should be like him in the Father.

I know your concerns and trying to help, and I appreciate that, but how can I ignore so great a salvation to not testify of it and just agree and be passive and popular? Sorry but I did that for many years, as in Gary is just a good ole boy so lets vote him in as a deacon, and elder and will not go back to that popularity contest. There is a greater message to be heard than what is being offered.

I dont think you understand me as well as you think you do. I will speak my mind bluntly. Some like that honest approach but most dont.
 
Last edited:

En Hakkore

Well-known member
To be honest with you I've never really thought about what Old Testament book I liked best or what Old Testament character I like best. So I had to think and come up with one. I definitely like your answer. There's so much for us in Genesis and Joseph is just an amazing character. So after thinking about it for a while I also chose Genesis with Jacob for my favorite character. I can totally relate to Jacob.
Yes, our favorite characters in books or movies are always those we can relate to in some way through shared experiences or those whose lives we wish to emulate... both aspects are sometimes at work, on one level lived and on another level hoped since we often fall short of the best qualities of our heroes, whomever they may be.

And once again your answer for the New Testament is dynamite, book of Luke, and what better character could there possibly be in the New Testament than Jesus. This one wasn't hard for me to answer it all. Romans is my favorite book and Romans chapter 8 is my favorite chapter. Paul and his teaching about Jesus is my favorite subject with the emphasis being upon Jesus.
I like Paul through the lens of Luke in Acts, Paul as he expresses himself in his own writings not so much, and ancient people writing in Paul's name not at all. ;)

That said, there are a number of elements in Romans 8 to which I can relate such as present sufferings (v18), longing for redemption (v23) and that even the bad things that happen will somehow work together for good (v28) --- the latter, in particular, is a key theme in the Joseph story (Gen 50:20). Another theme to which I relate is the divine absence... after 39:23 the Israelite deity drops out of the narrative as an agent --- characters (mostly Joseph) do refer to him (though only by a generic title), but his activities can only be inferred since he operates behind the scenes, so to speak, and when he does put in a brief appearance (46:2), it is to Israel/Jacob rather than to Joseph --- our respective choices of favorite character in Genesis are intriguing in this regard and I wonder how closely they relate to the experience (or not in my case) of a divine presence. My experience is one of betrayals by 'brothers' and languishing forgotten amidst a divine silence, as does Joseph in chapter 40, only for a lot longer.

I'm also interested in the themes you mentioned insofar as having you explain them to me. But I thought this might be a way to break the ice.
In terms of the positive (with which you wanted to start), they were "liberation, justice, forgiveness, care for the poor and downtrodden, maintaining hope through pain and suffering, etc." I've touched on a couple of these as they relate to my situation, though I deliberately passed over hope since I have largely abandoned it, at least tangibly in this life for me and I'm not altogether certain there is anything to follow. To bring Luke and his portrait of Jesus back into the discussion, as well as broaden the scope to the plight of others and about which I might be able to do something and offer hope, touches on many of the remaining themes... Luke alone presents Jesus' impoverished beginnings, laid at birth in an open-air feeding trough (Matthew instead situates the infant Jesus in a house bestowed with expensive gifts), and Luke invokes a blessing on the literal poor (Matthew 'spiritualizes' this). Stories such as the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal Son are uniquely Lukan, as is Jesus' petition of forgiveness for his executioners from the cross. My choice of Luke and his depiction of Jesus are intimately connected to the themes I introduced several weeks ago and these are largely absent or muted in the other gospels.

I would be interested to know what it is about Paul's 'teaching' of Jesus, whom he knew only through purported visionary experiences, that you find most attractive... Paul's Jesus is the post-resurrection exalted Lord, whereas the figure with whom I relate most strongly is the pre-Easter suffering Lord (a title for which Luke has a particular fondness) --- I don't think this is an accident and I suspect it reflects something of our very different approaches to the subjects at hand.

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

Algernon

Active member
I dont think you understand me as well as you think you do. I will speak my mind bluntly. Some like that honest approach but most dont.
What do you see as the reason that most Christians don't? What do you see as the reason that they don't understand you as well as they think they do?
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
I understand perfectly why they put me on ignore. It is what I repeat what Jesus said we should be like him and will be if we follow him in his standards, and that stirs the religious minds to anger who has a different agenda then to follow the way of Jesus to be like him in the Father.

You say I just might be wrong in that, but for me that isn;t even a consideration.
Thank God it is against the law to be crucified these days for heresy.

In summing up our Lords teachings it is that relationship which he demands that is an impossible feat unless God has done His supernatural work in you that He did in Jesus. Religious minds dont want to hear that.

Im not here for a popularity contest, God is not after perfecting me to be a specimen in His showcase He has gotten me to the place where He can reveal Himself in me just as He reveled Himself in Jesus by identification with our Father who is God.

Why do you think God sent people like Moses, Abraham, Jesus, anyway, only for a good read with sympathetic values to form beliefs from?

I know I am blunt and that is harsh for some whose feelings hang on a thin thread. But that is just who I am. Cut to the heart of it. I think that was the reason God sent me into prisons to counsel with inmates for over 25 years because I dont mind checking and correcting a con when he tries to con me.

Every single one of Jesus disciples put him on ignore, and flat out denied to be identified with him in his trials and tribulations. He was blunt to. And Sure that bothered Jesus, he wept over it, not because he was going to a cross to be tortured for his stance in the Father but that they did not get his message for who they should be like him in the Father.

I know your concerns and trying to help, and I appreciate that, but how can I ignore so great a salvation to not testify of it and just agree and be passive and popular? Sorry but I did that for many years, as in Gary is just a good ole boy so lets vote him in as a deacon, and elder and will not go back to that popularity contest. There is a greater message to be heard than what is being offered.

I dont think you understand me as well as you think you do. I will speak my mind bluntly. Some like that honest approach but most dont.
Awesome Gary I think are starting to get somewhere and I actually do understand you better. I'm a little to burnout right now your post but I can tell you I do like the honest and direct approach and I hope we keep moving that direction.
 

Gary Mac

Well-known member
What do you see as the reason that most Christians don't? What do you see as the reason that they don't understand you as well as they think they do?
By comparing what they say with the standards Jesus set for who we should be in the Father and like Him and will be IF.

May I ask you -- How many do you know that actually follows Jesus and is like the Father in His perfections as Jesus demands of us if we are to be of Him?
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Yes, our favorite characters in books or movies are always those we can relate to in some way through shared experiences or those whose lives we wish to emulate... both aspects are sometimes at work, on one level lived and on another level hoped since we often fall short of the best qualities of our heroes, whomever they may be.


I like Paul through the lens of Luke in Acts, Paul as he expresses himself in his own writings not so much, and ancient people writing in Paul's name not at all. ;)

That said, there are a number of elements in Romans 8 to which I can relate such as present sufferings (v18), longing for redemption (v23) and that even the bad things that happen will somehow work together for good (v28) --- the latter, in particular, is a key theme in the Joseph story (Gen 50:20). Another theme to which I relate is the divine absence... after 39:23 the Israelite deity drops out of the narrative as an agent --- characters (mostly Joseph) do refer to him (though only by a generic title), but his activities can only be inferred since he operates behind the scenes, so to speak, and when he does put in a brief appearance (46:2), it is to Israel/Jacob rather than to Joseph --- our respective choices of favorite character in Genesis are intriguing in this regard and I wonder how closely they relate to the experience (or not in my case) of a divine presence. My experience is one of betrayals by 'brothers' and languishing forgotten amidst a divine silence, as does Joseph in chapter 40, only for a lot longer.


In terms of the positive (with which you wanted to start), they were "liberation, justice, forgiveness, care for the poor and downtrodden, maintaining hope through pain and suffering, etc." I've touched on a couple of these as they relate to my situation, though I deliberately passed over hope since I have largely abandoned it, at least tangibly in this life for me and I'm not altogether certain there is anything to follow. To bring Luke and his portrait of Jesus back into the discussion, as well as broaden the scope to the plight of others and about which I might be able to do something and offer hope, touches on many of the remaining themes... Luke alone presents Jesus' impoverished beginnings, laid at birth in an open-air feeding trough (Matthew instead situates the infant Jesus in a house bestowed with expensive gifts), and Luke invokes a blessing on the literal poor (Matthew 'spiritualizes' this). Stories such as the Good Samaritan and the Prodigal Son are uniquely Lukan, as is Jesus' petition of forgiveness for his executioners from the cross. My choice of Luke and his depiction of Jesus are intimately connected to the themes I introduced several weeks ago and these are largely absent or muted in the other gospels.

I would be interested to know what it is about Paul's 'teaching' of Jesus, whom he knew only through purported visionary experiences, that you find most attractive... Paul's Jesus is the post-resurrection exalted Lord, whereas the figure with whom I relate most strongly is the pre-Easter suffering Lord (a title for which Luke has a particular fondness) --- I don't think this is an accident and I suspect it reflects something of our very different approaches to the subjects at hand.

Kind regards,
Jonathan
Awesome post Jonathan. I didn't get any notification so I didn't see it till I Looked here for your reply. I really want to take the time to read it . I also want to let you know how much I appreciate you taking time to write it. I don't know if you ever heard me mention my favorite thing is to read stuff By people that know what they're talking about and you most certainly are right at the top of that list. That's why I want to give this some time and thought before I reply. So I'll dig into it tomorrow morning bright and early. Have a good evening Jonathan.
 

Algernon

Active member
By comparing what they say with the standards Jesus set for who we should be in the Father and like Him and will be IF.

May I ask you -- How many do you know that actually follows Jesus and is like the Father in His perfections as Jesus demands of us if we are to be of Him?
From my experience, most don't even know the half of what Jesus said and therefore are unable to follow Him, much less become one with Him. The vast majority don't believe that it's required that they truly follow Him and therefore fall well short of following Him, much less become one with Him.

You didn't seem to answer either of my questions, so I'll try again. I can see that the first question needed to be more specific, so I'll rephrase it.

1) What do you see as the reason that most Christians don't like your honest approach?

2) What do you see as the reason that they don't understand you as well as they think they do?
 

Gary Mac

Well-known member
Awesome Gary I think are starting to get somewhere and I actually do understand you better. I'm a little to burnout right now your post but I can tell you I do like the honest and direct approach and I hope we keep moving that direction.
Thank you I hope we can continue to communicate maturely.

Maturity is a virtue. When Jesus said be be ye therefore perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect actually means to be mature as your Father in heaven is mature. You can look up the translation perfect = mature. Religious folk read that word perfect and automatically get a negative view as in that is impossible. And all that does is confirm their immaturity for not seeking it out and cant relate to the actual message in it.
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Thank you I hope we can continue to communicate maturely.

Maturity is a virtue. When Jesus said be be ye therefore perfect even as your Father in heaven is perfect actually means to be mature as your Father in heaven is mature. You can look up the translation perfect = mature. Religious folk read that word perfect and automatically get a negative view as in that is impossible. And all that does is confirm their immaturity for not seeking it out and cant relate to the actual message in it.
Now that makes good sense Gary. Perfect equals maturity I can see that. The difficulty I can see you and I Having with that is I would say maturity is a growing process sort of like sanctification. I realize I probably misunderstood everything I've read that you posted so with that in mind let me ask you... did you become mature all at once? See because I believe we grow in Christ and I think you may have a different opinion on that which is fine because I really want to find out exactly where you're coming from. So let's try this maturity idea. Looking forward to your reply.
 

En Hakkore

Well-known member
Awesome post Jonathan. I didn't get any notification so I didn't see it till I Looked here for your reply. I really want to take the time to read it . I also want to let you know how much I appreciate you taking time to write it. I don't know if you ever heard me mention my favorite thing is to read stuff By people that know what they're talking about and you most certainly are right at the top of that list. That's why I want to give this some time and thought before I reply. So I'll dig into it tomorrow morning bright and early. Have a good evening Jonathan.
Thanks... I look forward to your thoughtful reply tomorrow morning. In the meantime, have a great evening, as well!

Kind regards,
Jonathan
 

Gary Mac

Well-known member
Now that makes good sense Gary. Perfect equals maturity I can see that. The difficulty I can see you and I Having with that is I would say maturity is a growing process sort of like sanctification. I realize I probably misunderstood everything I've read that you posted so with that in mind let me ask you... did you become mature all at once? See because I believe we grow in Christ and I think you may have a different opinion on that which is fine because I really want to find out exactly where you're coming from. So let's try this maturity idea. Looking forward to your reply.
This may become kinda long so bear with me but here is what changed my life in Christ and here is how and what happened in me over the years.

I grew in Christianity learning all the different doctrines, beliefs, studied the book and the people who wrote it. I studied how our modern day bible came to canon from a com[elation of many other bibles. I studied who decided what was to go into the book. Followed the laws of, got dunked in a tank of water where these said I needed it. I went into the water a Christian and came out of the water a wet Christian. Paid my tithes as was demanded of me, became teacher of all these laws, and did what I was taught to do.

One day in the mid nineties I was invited to go to a prison in Iowa Park Texas right north of Wichita falls with another prison minister who gathered all the prison ministers he could and asked me to bring who I could to help.

I was deacon and elder in this church I was attending so I invited the men that whoever wanted to go and minister the Christ to inmates. Exactly twelve volunteered so I got them clearance. None of these had ever done anything like this in their Christian couriers and I had a session with them what to expect.

When we arrived at the prison I didnt know the the head of the program. He was a former sergeant of arms for the hells angels. Here I was in my three piece suit carrying my big ole black King James bible with a pocket full of tracts ready to save the populous with my twelve disciples, wall all around me were ministers wearing leather pant and jackets, long hair, tattoos. I thought to myself, how can these guys relay anything of Christ looking as they do?

When it was time to visit inmates the head man begin to pair people up separating me from my people. I panicked, I introduced myself and he said he had heard of me. I told him of my people had never visited a prison and they were not ready for lockdown. He said he already figured that by the way the hung to my coattail.

He pointed to a biker, had a long beard, long hair, leathers, chains hanging from his pockets, tatts and the whole works. He said you are going with him to block E, the hardest block in the unit. so off we went.

E is lockdown and these inmates get to leave their cell only one hour a day to shower and go outside to what they call the kennels. Kenels are a series of chain link fence that made a cubical about five foot square where they be outside for a few minutes then return to do it all again in 24 hours.

there were three decks of cells sp we started our ministry on the third level. We agreed he would start on one end I I on the other and meet in the middle. I walked up to this one cell and a huge black man was standing in his underwear in the middle of his cell. Here I was all spit polished and the example for what a Christian is supposed to look like and be. I said hello my name is Gary and just want to know if there is anything I can do for you. He glared at me, turned around went to his bunk, wrapped the sheet around him and over his head, turned his back to me facing the wall.

I went to the next cells until I met with my partner in the middle. He didnt say anything but went right over to that cell where the man rejected me and begin to talk. It wasnt long before that man was in tears giving his life over to God. When they were done I aske him -- why would you talk to him and not to me. He said something that changed my life forever. He said, you are to clean, you have noting I need or can relate to at all.

From that day on, I didnt cut my hair, shed the three piece suit, didnt need that KJV bible to look noble for religious folk. When my hair grew into a ponytail, no more suits, and my appearance changed you would not believe the difference it made being able to be accepted by inmates and communicate with them.

Ironic is the religious folk saw it just the opposite. I no longer looked their part, I no longer could communicate with them even though I had prior. I was the same guy but I was not the same guy if that makes sense.

I haven't stepped back into one of these churches sense and in the mid 2000s I retired from prison ministry. My reward was that some inmates got out of prison and started their own ministries, some built churches, some went into evangelism.

In the twinkling of an eye I was changed. All things became new, a new heaven and earth. Not that I grew into it, , I grew in the laws for belief systems but that God came to me and opened up His heaven and what is really in it. I didnt grow into that I received it as His gift.

In that brought a whole new meaning to born again where I went from looking noble toward man in his beliefs to actually walking as He walks in His same light. And funny is some of these religious folk see that as arrogant, egotistical, braggadocios. Funny is I used to be just like them. Even in judgment of those bikers at that prison.

Thank God He opened all of His heaven to me to know this difference, Gen 3:22. It always has been that way with God and man where at the mercy seat, God and man come together as one and not sperate by the laws for religions.

Was I wrong being the example in these churches, NO' I was only ignorant for who God really is and how He manifests and works in man. And that is so simple, it is His disposition of Love setting aside self beliefs, and becoming like Him in His same image of Love. In that I didnt grow into it that but received that in me and in that I am a happy ,man, for all the \tings I didnt understand and questioned how certain things could be in biblical terms came to light. Nothing is hidden that was hidden. .
 

Redeemed

Well-known member
Yes, our favorite characters in books or movies are always those we can relate to in some way through shared experiences or those whose lives we wish to emulate... both aspects are sometimes at work, on one level lived and on another level hoped since we often fall short of the best qualities of our heroes, whomever they may be.
I can relate to your quote above. And I think that our life experiences and the way our brains get wired growing up may have a lot to do with how we approach the Bible. I've never given much thought to how different people approach the Bible so this is fascinating to me.

You said In your post before your sabbatical “what is important is not one's intelligence or education levels, but their starting assumptions and core values.”

I believe God is living and powerful and so is his word. That God can discern the thoughts and intents of the heart and so can his word. I think that is one of the benefits of studying the Bible... To show us who we really are on the inside.

I'm a big fan of renewing your mind:

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect. (Rom. 12:2)

But there is also this:

And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; [for this comes] from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit. ( 2 Corinthians 3:18)

I mention this in relation to 2 Corinthians 3:18 because Romans 12:2 is a description of how we are transformed, without any reference to the emotional transformation that comes from beholding the glory of Christ.

I think life can and does give us all a beat down. But God and his word can restore us. Like Joseph going from the pit his brothers dumped him in to being in charge of the most powerful nation at the time.

Like the apostle Paul, going from trying to destroy the church to becoming it's biggest defender. Even with all the hardships he had to endure. The guy spread Christianity far and wide. He wrote almost 2/3 of the New Testament.

I think our brains are not fixed or hardwired. If we choose, we can be continuous and beautiful works in progress

I really appreciate hearing your thoughts on the Bible as they really open my mind and make me think about things I've never thought about before.
 
Last edited:
Top