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  1. In some circles such a question as this would be ridiculed. And the principle they are following is they sin everyday, and can tell you what the sins are, yet do not attempt to repent change or believe it is possible to walk in purity and holiness. I have exchanged posts with such as these, and their answer is always confusing. They tend of have hard hearts and desire to cause the opponent to sin to show up the fact they are hypocrites and there is not a problem at all, just hypocrisy. The real issue is we need to know what transforming love is in our hearts, and walk in it. Our walk is the fruit of Christ indwelling us. We are not trying to be good to score rewards but rather as the outflow of the love we have towards others. And this is where the problem of failure really lies. God says this 29 But if from there you seek the LORD your God, you will find him if you look for him with all your heart and with all your soul. Deut 4
  2. This is an interesting topic. Paul says if we sow to the flesh we reap death If we sow to the Spirit we reap eternal life For some this causes a problem. By faith they say they have eternal life that cannot be lost so if a believer sows to the spirit they will reap a short mortal life, but there eternal life is unaffected. Equally sowing to the Spirit reaps rewards, but not eternal life because we already have it. The problem I have with this argument is it only works if you change the meaning. Paul is saying is we have faith in Jesus we will sow to the Spirit, but it is the sowing that reaps eternal life and not just the faith. The fruit of the faith is the sowing. Some will call this heresy and unbelief and a lie of satan to cause people to invest in good works to save them through the illusion of righteous deeds, which are just rubbish. It is so complex an argument, it destroys the love and beauty of Christs work within us, and believes we are truly sinful and lost until we met Christ face to face. The positive aspects of faith are maintained because we have a perfect pure spirit untouched by the sinful flesh which binds us to imperfection and defeat. I am much simpler. Paul is simply saying sow to the Spirit and you show your faith in Christ and will reap eternal life when you see Him face to face. It says what it means, so walk the path you were called to follow.
  3. This is a good question. I can only speculate. To give creation free choice to choose the Lords way or rebel, there is a compromise where rebels know their fate, yet they are an example of where this leads. Satan will be thrown into the lake of fire to be tortured for all eternity. Gods heart is not to force loyalty and praise, but to show behaviour that deserves loyalty and praise. As in Job, the Lord takes pleasure is Jobs righteous behaviour and love for Him. He is looking for people who love God for who He is, and know the life that comes from His ways and His commands, not in legalism but in love. And why create creation and bring about this split? Because there is no other way to create a creation that chooses to follow the Lord, rather than a creation that is dictated to follow the Lord.
  4. I like to think about this issues as 3 righteousnesses 1 Righteousness by faith in Jesus and the cross 2 Righteousness of the heart that is brought about through repentance and cleansing through the blood of Christ 3 Righteousness of action that comes from a pure heart All these 3 are only possible if we believe in Jesus and in the cross for the forgiveness of our sins by the atoning sacrifice of Jesus. I have heard believers claim faith does not change the heart of the believer, it is desperately wicked and can never be resolved. The problem with this view, is then there is no redeemed people or Holy nation, or blameless and pure church, which Paul clearly saw that there was among the churches he established. What is more likely is easy believism is common, and deception of faith in Christ saves without transformation and obedience, following the way of Jesus. Without the faith to believe Jesus changes us, nothing progresses. The key is the heart of the believer, through repentance, confession and love working then the door is open to a new life and a new walk with Jesus.
  5. There is a simple logic behind the resurrection 1. Jesus did not get His disciples to write anything down, because only after the resurrection would it make sense 2. 3 years is a very short time to truly get to know someone and trust them. They saw His miracles, His authority, His life, His way 3. Jesus's challenge to the authorities was spiritual not physical. He wanted to set a righteous, honest truthful example 4. Jesus's death was totally unexpected, and the disciples expected a revolution and the reigning of the Messiah 5. In the last week, Jesus went from ruler, to innocent victim of execution, defeat at the hands of His enemies. 6. Without the resurrection none of the above would work or make sense. With the Holy Spirit, and conquering death all would be unstoppable. And this was the point. Everything hung on righteous, loving, walking empowered by the Holy Spirit, Heaven on earth.
  6. I agree your argument is sound, ie. the trinity is something that comes from Jesus. Or to put it simply, Jesus prayed to the Father, and mentions the Holy Spirit being sent, and being sinned against. So clearly Jesus taught all three are separate yet one in God as Matt 28:19 declares
  7. Suffering is the result of the choice not to walk Gods way, which is inherited from Adam and the fall. The problem of suffering is normally argued if God truly loves us He would not permit suffering. But without suffering there would be no choice or opportunity to get to know Him. Suffering is innate within love, the ability to take pain and still forgive, to hope in a situation of difficulty and danger and come out victorious. So my proposal is if you take away consequences from actions, then nothing has meaning as the outcome is always bland resolution. And those who cannot take real risks, cannot have real responsibility or the ability to choose that which is right over that which is wrong. Jesus declared we are co-heirs with Him reigning on His throne, so we are to carry ultimate responsibility and authority. It appears the whole of our life experience is testing and refining this relationship with Him and the responsibility we carry in all things He has given us as stewards.
  8. Before the fall, there was no suffering. The choice of the fall, brought suffering and death. When we are born, our rejection of love and choosing sinful behaviour brings suffering and consequences. We are born separate from God, so in sin itself, unable to do that which is right, and always getting it wrong. The struggle to stay alive, to grasp and maintain that which we are given brings suffering and failure along with it.
  9. He is my Lord and Saviour. The cross demonstrates how His heart is driven, the depths of love to which He will go, and His understanding of everything I know.
  10. This is a deep question. And the answer is love and choice. Knowledge of good and evil, means we are provided with choices and consequences. The problem with consequences is they involve others, and the guilty and innocent. God appears to regard creation like a field, His word and love is sown, and left to grow and finally a harvest is taken. As far as society is concerned it can choose how to live and relate one to another, from loving societies to ones where cannibalism is their highest ethic. What are we to conclude? It is unjust to allow freedom, or without freedom we would not have the chance to know God? God considered the chance to purchase a people of His own into eternity worth the loss and failure of all who are given the precious gift of life.
  11. Repentance is something God told us about through the prophets http://www.hebrew4christians.com/Holidays/Fall_Holidays/Elul/Teshuvah/teshuvah.html Four Steps of Repentance Teshuvah: 1 Forsake the sin (Prov. 28:13). "Sincere repentance is demonstrated when the same temptation to sin, under the same conditions, is resolutely resisted" (Talmud Yoma 86b). Note that according to traditional Jewish views, the atonement is of no avail without repentance (Midrash Sifra). [shuv/strepho] 2 Regret the breach in your relationship with God and others (Psalm 51). [nacham/metanoia] 3 Confess the truth and make amends with those we have harmed (Prov. 28:13; 1 John 1:9; James 5:16, Matt. 5:23-4). Note that we must ask for mechilah (forgiveness from others) before receiving selichah (forgiveness from God). [shuv/strepho] 4 Accept your forgiveness and move forward with the LORD through faith (Phil. 3:13-14; 1 John 1:9). Be comforted by the Presence of the LORD in your life: Nachumu: "Comfort ye my people" (Isa. 40:1). [nacham/metanoia]. Finally, it needs to be said that authentic repentance is a lifestyle, not a "one time deal." We never get past it. Although there is certainly spiritual progress as we walk in grace, all genuine progress comes through ongoing teshuvah. We may repent from a certain action at a given point in time, but that does not mean that no longer need to do teshuvah. Teshuvah is perpetual and timeless, since it corresponds to our spiritual rather than our temporal lives (i.e., chayei olam rather than chayei sha'ah). Indeed, a true penitent is called baal teshuvah , a "master of returning," who is always turning away from self and toward God. We never get beyond the call to "repent and believe the gospel" (Mark 1:15). That is why the season of teshuvah is always timely. The message of Elul and the High Holidays is meant to be carried over throughout the rest of the year. John the baptist preached repentance and Jesus said His ministry was founded on Jonahs message to Nineveh.
  12. Praise the Lord that there are people here who love the Lord. God bless you
  13. Today a "brother" had shared about losing their mother, who had died. I gave my condolences, which were ignored, and my sharing about love and following Jesus's ways are regarded as drivel. I am still amazed at how anyone who loves Jesus could even say this. It suggests to me, in truth, they do not know Jesus or the cross in their hearts, but rather believe a sinner is saved by the cross, but they stay unchanged and immobile in there life, continuing in sin, but just pointing to the cross as if this is what it means to follow Jesus. I share this, as my experience, wondering if this community is a reflection of discovering walking in the ways of Jesus as the walk of life and salvation. God bless you all, Praise the Lord for His love sacrifice that brought us forgiveness of sins through faith and the Holy Spirit to dwell in our hearts, Amen.
  14. I spent years witnessing to muslims, asking them about their faith, and reduced everything down to one word love. God calls us to do two things, love Him with all we are, and to love our neighbours as we love ourselves. Now this is a staggeringly difficult thing to do, if we do not know God, or do not know ourselves, let alone our neighbours. I have met believers who responded to talking about love, by saying this was old religion, of polite society and charity, but now we are in the period of spiritual gifts and displays of Gods authority. Interestingly when I talked about the heart their response was to say I had no right to challenge them about their heart, when all I asked was how was their heart. It is impossible to love God unless we have had a cleansed purified heart, but it appears some have never heard this or even experienced it.
  15. Hello and welcome brothers and sisters in Christ. I am here because a OSAS member on another site suggested this site was full of people who desired to walk in the ways of Jesus. It is odd to me, that to some believers, to share about Jesus's ways and to explore what Jesus is saying and asking why and how is deemed as self righteousness and leading people to hell.
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