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Biblical Responses to the New Age Movement

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  • #16
    So, before one buys into this circular philosophizing, they need to consider whether, logically, this is acceptable to the reality of life we all know. There is no spiritual or mutual ground between reincarnation and resurrection. They are opposites, mutually exclusive. Satan, who opposes God, always attacks the resurrection because death is the penalty for sin. For a reincarnationist, death is the natural process that leads one on to a higher plane of existence, in a new body and a better spiritual condition, and this is universal for all.

    The Bible presents death as a disaster that was brought in as an enemy to mankind. It is a judgment from God that was pronounced on Adam and Eve and consequently passed down to all mankind. We all die because we are all sinners in a fallen state. The Bible tells us resurrection is what will conquer physical death. If there is no resurrection there is no victory over death. Christ said this would be conquered as the last enemy defeated. As it is stated all those who love death hate me ! Reincarnation doesn’t defeat death, it only promotes it.

    The resurrection of Christ is the evidence that the penalty of sin has been paid. He, being the first to conquer death and live life eternally in a body, and he promises the same for all of us. However, where one spends their eternity in their body will depends on their choice of accepting or rejecting Christ and His work for them.

    Reincarnation is not compatible with the Bible. If we live a hundred lifetimes and the resurrection day comes, which body do I rise in? I can only get one so 99 are left in the ground and death is not conquered. Resurrection is applied only to the body. We never see a soul or a spirit resurrected because they continue to exist, while the body decays. We find the Bible teaches us everyone lives once. Resurrection is a transformation of a persons own mortal body to an imperishable, immortal one. It is a one time final event that the sovereign God is in control of.

    Jesus' resurrection disproves reincarnation. He did not take up another body, but the same one in which He lives forever. The word for body is soma and always refers to a physical body. It is a one time final event and everyone will experience this, Christian or not. Hebrews 9:27 tells us it appointed to man to die once but after this the judgment. According to this scripture Christ would have to die again for man to be reincarnated. Since their is a relationship to man dying once and Christ being sacrificed only once. Each person receives one life in which they will choose whether to bow their knee to God, submit to His Lordship, or they will bow their knee to God in the resurrection and face the judgment of eternal separation from God.

    In the later part of this verse in Hebrews 9:27, it says "Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many." If the philosophy of reincarnation is true, Christ would have to die again, since there is a relationship to man dying once and Christ being sacrificed only once.

    Each of us live once and face the judgment. There are no second chances to come back. 2 Corinthians 5:8 tells us at death the believer immediately goes into the presence of the Lord to rest from his labors. I think if one were to chose either of these alternatives, even if reincarnation were true, certainly, only once is enough and to be accepted into paradise with the architect of the universe is a grander offer than the enlightenment that false Hinduism offers. Why try to perfect yourself through your own handiwork when the truth is, Christ did it all? The incarnation of the God/man is better than trusting the reincarnation of man. Christ died for our faults, our shortcomings, our sins. It works because it's the truth and it's the truth that will set you free. It's by God's grace and mercy, a gift given to us freely, not by our own hands. As for me, I'll choose mercy, I need it and I certainly appreciate God's free gift.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Gandalf View Post
      That is about the most biased selection of verses possible! So here are some to contradict yours:

      Some men are righteous:

      I appreciate that Job is probably not a real person so this is not a valid example, but you probably think he was:

      2 Sam 22:21-25 (David speaking):

      Some men do seek after God:

      Some men seem to even seek and find salvation without knowing about Jesus:

      Can't you see that picking out some verse that happens to say what you want it to say and then saying "Thus says the Bible" or worse "Thus says GOD" is rather pointless? It convinces no one who doubts it, or maybe even knows that it cannot possibly be true.

      What is the point of being delivered from the "consequence of our sin" (quoting thomas1961), if we are not also delivered from our inclination to keep sinning - as the consequences will surely be reinstated?

      Take the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt 18:23). As a result of his plea for mercy the consequence of his sin was simply forgiven (with no penal substitute you might notice!). But then as a result of his bad behaviour toward his fellow servants, the consequences of his previously forgiven sin was reinstated!

      I can't give a better description of the difference between forgiveness and real salvation than Sadhu Sundar Singh (speaking for Jesus):

      Please don't take this post as being overly critical of yours. I am sure we agree more than we disagree but it is hard to start a beneficial learning exchange starting with simple agreement don't you think?
      Romans 3:9-20

      Well then, are we Jews in any better condition than the Gentiles? Not at all![a] I have already shown that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. 10 As the Scriptures say:

      “There is no one who is righteous,
      11 no one who is wise
      or who worships God.
      12 All have turned away from God;
      they have all gone wrong;
      no one does what is right, not even one.
      13 Their words are full of deadly deceit;
      wicked lies roll off their tongues,
      and dangerous threats, like snake's poison, from their lips;
      14 their speech is filled with bitter curses.
      15 They are quick to hurt and kill;
      16 they leave ruin and destruction wherever they go.
      17 They have not known the path of peace,
      18 nor have they learned reverence for God.”

      19 Now we know that everything in the Law applies to those who live under the Law, in order to stop all human excuses and bring the whole world under God's judgment. 20 For no one is put right in God's sight by doing what the Law requires; what the Law does is to make us know that we have sinned. Footnotes:

      1. Romans 3:9 any better condition than the Gentiles? Not at all!; or any worse condition than the Gentiles? Not altogether.

      Comment


      • #18
        Heaven is A place of eternal joy and peace with God.
        Heaven is the dwelling place of God and for those who are saved through Jesus.
        • Psalm 20:6, "Now I know that the LORD saves his anointed; he answers him from his holy heaven with the saving power of his right hand."
        • John 14:2, "In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you."
        • See also Psalm 102:19; 123:1; Matt. 5:34; 2 Cor. 12:3, 4.

        Comment


        • #19
          Hell is A place of eternal fire and torment
          Many think hell is a state of mind and right here on earth, or that it simply doesn't exist. It does. The Bible tells us about it.
          • Mark 9:43, "If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out."
          • Rev. 14:11, "And the smoke of their torment rises for ever and ever. There is no rest day or night for those who worship the beast and his image, or for anyone who receives the mark of his name."
          • See also Luke 16:19-31; 2 Pet. 2:4; Matt. 22:13; Jude 6, 23; Rev. 21:8.

          Comment


          • #20
            Most people think that we are all basically good. They admit that we have done some bad things and that some people are worse than others. But they feel that even the worst people are still basically good and that some people are so good that they make it to Heaven.
            This is totally wrong. Jesus said, “You are evil” (Matthew 7:1). The Bible says, “There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10 ). We are evil, not good. In fact, we are not only basically evil, we are totally evil. Our hearts are “full of evil” (Ecclesiastes 9:3). “Every intent of the heart is only evil continually” (Genesis 6:5). We are filled with sin from head to toe (Isaiah 1:6). We are not good people who occasionally do evil – we are evil people who never do good out of pure motives. Our “good deeds” are only sins in disguise. We all deserve Hell.
            God has provided a solution. Christ was the only good person. He was punished in our place (1 Peter 3:18 ). We can be forgiven by believing in Him. God then changes us so that we are truly able to do good.

            Comment


            • #21
              Jesus answered this question in Matthew 7:13-14, “Enter by the narrow gate, for wide is the gate and narrow is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it. Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way that leads to life, and there are few who find it.” Many go to Hell. Few go to Heaven.
              Each of us is on one of these two roads. Most people are on the road to Hell, though they do not know it. They usually think they will end up in Heaven. Only a few have gotten off the road to Hell and are now on the road to Heaven. Though their number is large in itself (Revelation 7:9), it is far out-numbered by those who go to Hell.
              It is absolutely essential that each of us knows for sure which road we are on. There will be no second chance. There are only two destinies. The Bible alone has the answer. Christ is the only way to Heaven (John 14:6). Otherwise, we go to Hell. Which road are you on?

              Comment


              • #22
                The Bible describes the Book of Life in several places. It is God’s list of all persons who are in a right relationship with God. Philippians 4:3 mentions those “whose names are in the Book of Life.” Jesus said, “Rejoice that your names are recorded in Heaven” (Luke 10:20 ).

                The book of Revelation especially describes it. God wrote some people’s names in the Book of Life from eternity, but did not write other names there (13:8, 17:8). The names in that Book will never be erased (3:5). Revelation 20 says that we will appear before God on Judgement Day. God will open “the books” that have recorded all our sins (verse 12). Then God will open the Book of Life to show if our names are written there. Verse 15 says, “Anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire(Hell).”

                We do not get our names in that Book by doing good deeds. It is God, not us, who writes names in it. We get saved only by repenting of sin and believing in Christ (Acts 20:21 ). Is your name in the Book of Life?

                Comment


                • #23
                  Originally posted by Gandalf View Post
                  That is about the most biased selection of verses possible! So here are some to contradict yours:

                  Some men are righteous:

                  I appreciate that Job is probably not a real person so this is not a valid example, but you probably think he was:

                  2 Sam 22:21-25 (David speaking):

                  Some men do seek after God:

                  Some men seem to even seek and find salvation without knowing about Jesus:

                  Can't you see that picking out some verse that happens to say what you want it to say and then saying "Thus says the Bible" or worse "Thus says GOD" is rather pointless? It convinces no one who doubts it, or maybe even knows that it cannot possibly be true.

                  What is the point of being delivered from the "consequence of our sin" (quoting thomas1961), if we are not also delivered from our inclination to keep sinning - as the consequences will surely be reinstated?

                  Take the parable of the unforgiving servant (Matt 18:23). As a result of his plea for mercy the consequence of his sin was simply forgiven (with no penal substitute you might notice!). But then as a result of his bad behaviour toward his fellow servants, the consequences of his previously forgiven sin was reinstated!

                  I can't give a better description of the difference between forgiveness and real salvation than Sadhu Sundar Singh (speaking for Jesus):

                  Please don't take this post as being overly critical of yours. I am sure we agree more than we disagree but it is hard to start a beneficial learning exchange starting with simple agreement don't you think?
                  The scriptures say there is no one righteous. All have fallen short. The believer in Christ receives HIS righteousness as we have none of our own. (Romans 3:10)

                  BTW Job was very much a real person. God does not deal with fables or myths.
                  Learn to expect the impossible, expect the unusual, and expect the miraculous, because that is where God works.

                  Comment


                  • #24
                    Jeremiah 17:9

                    “Who can understand the human heart?
                    There is nothing else so deceitful;
                    it is too sick to be healed.

                    Comment


                    • #25
                      The Bible Says:

                      Gen 1:26 – God created man in His own image. This does not mean physical likeness. God is Spirit. Although the Bible speaks of the “hand” of God, it also speaks of being “sheltered under his wing.” These are just word pictures to help us understand concepts about God. Being in the image of God refers to our personality, intelligence, conscience, awareness of right and wrong, etc. We are individual and moral creatures. Because we are in the image of God we are capable of loving, doing good deeds, sacrifice, etc.

                      So, creation explains why we are capable of great good.

                      We’ve seen what the three major world views say about man’s basic nature as it relates to being good or bad. But let’s look at another aspect of the nature of man. Man is unique from animals in his ability to think logically, reason, etc. Although an animal might learn how to navigate a maze and do so faster and faster each time he is put into the maze, animals don’t engage in abstract thinking. They don’t form different types of governments. They don’t develop advance technologically. A beaver house looks the same now as it has for thousands of years. A bird’s nest looks the same now as it always has. If man is just a more highly evolved animal, how does naturalism explain this huge leap in intelligence? But if we were created in the image of God, then his vast difference from the animals makes sense.

                      Gen 2:8, 16, 17 – God put them in a perfect environment with everything they needed. (Remember that naturalism says, if we just had a perfect environment, everyone would be good.) He gave them a command to obey. God didn’t want robots. He wanted creatures who chose to have fellowship with Him.

                      Gen 3:1-24 – Man disobeyed. We see their guilt (vs 7). We see that the world was affected (vs 17-18). The result was immediate spiritual death and eventual physical death.

                      Because of the fall, the image of God was corrupted. And the Bible teaches that Adam’s sin was passed on to the whole human race. Rom 5:12 says, “So then, just as sin entered the world through one man and death through sin, and so death spread to all people because all sinned.” In Ps 51:5, David says, “Look, I was prone to do wrong from birth; I was a sinner the moment my mother conceived me.”

                      So, the fall also explains why man is capable of great evil.

                      Rom 3:23 says that all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, but they are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Jesus Christ. Otherwise, the penalty for sin is death (Rom 6:23) So, man sinned, but God provided a way to make things right by sending His Son to die and pay the penalty for sin.

                      Pantheism says there is no guilt because you are god and just need to recognize it. Through the process of karma and reincarnation you’ll eventually figure it out.

                      Naturalism says there is no guilt because you are just responding to external stimuli and your environment made you do it.

                      Those religions that teach that there is guilt all have a system by which you can earn God’s approval.

                      Christianity is unique because it recognizes the guilt and it recognizes we can’t do anything about it on our own. Guilt is good because it drives one outside of himself to seek a solution. That solution is Jesus Christ. God has provided a way to take care of our guilt by accepting Christ’s payment for the guilt on our behalf.
                      A. Introduction I read a really good book called The Deadliest Monster, by Jeff Baldwin, in which he compared the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with that of Frankenstein. I don’t know if you’ve ever thought about those books with your worldview glasses on. I know I never had. Do you remember the stories well enough to answer the question: What are the authors’ views of human nature?

                      Comment


                      • #26
                        A person has to recognize he is a sinner before he sees the need for a savior. I think main thing we need to recognize is that the idea that man is basically good strikes at the very heart of the gospel message. t keeps a lot of folks outside the church from coming to Christ. And it even keeps a lot of folks who go to church and think they are Christians from recognizing their sin and need for Jesus.

                        Comment


                        • #27
                          The sin nature is that part of human beings that impels us to commit sin. The Bible teaches that we have a sin nature. Not only do we commit sin, but it is our nature to do so. This teaching is in contrast to that of many religious movements that deny original sin or total depravity.

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                          • #28
                            thomas1961 Very well put! I like this exposition!

                            My experience with new age beliefs tends to indicate that a good portion of New Age individuals do not know the tenets for their own beliefs. They simply "feel" connected to something greater than themselves and then make up a way to connect to it, or have someone tell them how they should go about it. (Crystals, astrology, psychics and mediums, spirit-guides/angels AKA demons, meditation, drugs, etc.) Expounding on it like this allows for them to express themselves more openly, and seek to be understood. That establishes trust. Good work.

                            This all goes without saying anything about apologetic method. I'd assume that in application this all would be included within discussions about each person's individual beliefs. One result of the New Age movement is that they tend to "feel" things deeply. It's their focus and only way they believe they can gain harmony with their "god"- an impersonal god means no real two-way communication after all. Meditation and introspective thinking are mostly all they have left. (Apart from demonic interaction.) Apologetically speaking, I feel it's important to connect with them in their pursuit of this harmony and emotional self-obsession because the heart is deceitfully wicked and will be laid bare before the light of the gospel. Our sinful feelings apart from Christ are easily exposed to the light. This approach has the added benefit of establishing an introduction to God's biblical love and his desire to harmonize with us, instead of chaotically being in dissension with us because of our sin and sin nature. Therefore, God became flesh and dwelt among us... etc. Insert the beautiful truths of the gospel message, ones greater than they'll find within themselves, and trust the Holy Spirits influence through us.

                            Thanks for a fun topic and discourse, thomas1961! I appreciate the time you put into this.

                            Comment


                            • #29
                              Originally posted by Thaillen View Post
                              thomas1961 Very well put! I like this exposition!

                              My experience with new age beliefs tends to indicate that a good portion of New Age individuals do not know the tenets for their own beliefs. They simply "feel" connected to something greater than themselves and then make up a way to connect to it, or have someone tell them how they should go about it. (Crystals, astrology, psychics and mediums, spirit-guides/angels AKA demons, meditation, drugs, etc.) Expounding on it like this allows for them to express themselves more openly, and seek to be understood. That establishes trust. Good work.

                              This all goes without saying anything about apologetic method. I'd assume that in application this all would be included within discussions about each person's individual beliefs. One result of the New Age movement is that they tend to "feel" things deeply. It's their focus and only way they believe they can gain harmony with their "god"- an impersonal god means no real two-way communication after all. Meditation and introspective thinking are mostly all they have left. (Apart from demonic interaction.) Apologetically speaking, I feel it's important to connect with them in their pursuit of this harmony and emotional self-obsession because the heart is deceitfully wicked and will be laid bare before the light of the gospel. Our sinful feelings apart from Christ are easily exposed to the light. This approach has the added benefit of establishing an introduction to God's biblical love and his desire to harmonize with us, instead of chaotically being in dissension with us because of our sin and sin nature. Therefore, God became flesh and dwelt among us... etc. Insert the beautiful truths of the gospel message, ones greater than they'll find within themselves, and trust the Holy Spirits influence through us.

                              Thanks for a fun topic and discourse, thomas1961! I appreciate the time you put into this.
                              Christianity tell the truth! Others tell lies!

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