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GaWx

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I understand but what defines someone as "good?"
Being respectful of others regardless of differences like religion, nationality, race, etc.. is a big part of it to me. Not looking down on others just due to these differences. I firmly believe humans were created as equals.
 

Poimen

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Being respectful of others regardless of differences like religion, nationality, race, etc.. is a big part of it to me. I firmly believe humans were created as equals.
No doubt. We are all created in the image of God and therefore every human is worthy of respect and honor, regardless of age, color, ethnic background, country of origin, religion, sexual orientation, etc, etc.
 

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This also applies to all folks alive today. These are just beliefs, regardless. Nobody could possibly know where any of us are going after we pass away.

Hope this helps. Bible is very clear on this subject.

What Happens When You Die?
Ray Pritchard | Keep Believing Ministries
Thursday, August 22, 2019
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We live in a time when there is great fascination about life after death. Why this fascination with the world beyond the grave? Is it not because death is so final? Whatever one thinks about the reports of “near-death” visions, death when it finally comes is irreversible. When you finally cross the line, there is no coming back from the other side. Death wins the battle every time. After the doctors have tried the latest wonder drug, after the best minds have pooled their wisdom, after the philosophers have done their best to explain that death is only a natural part of life, we come face to face with the ugly reality that someday we will all die. And that death—whether planned or accidental, whether comfortable or painful—will be the end of life as we have known it.
Questions about Life after Death
In answering questions about life after death, we are left with only two sources to consult. Either we turn to human experience or we turn to the Word of God. If we turn to human experience, we find many guesses, many ideas, many theories—but no sure answers. That’s because, in the nature of the case, no human has a sure answer. The only people who have the answer are dead! That leaves us with the Word of God. In God’s Word we find ample, abundant answers. God who knows the future knows what happens when we die, and he hasn’t left us to wonder about it. The Bible is filled with information on this subject, so much in fact that we can offer only a brief survey in this chapter.
If you want the answer in one sentence here it is: What happens after you die depends on what happens before you die. Consider what the Bible says in Hebrews 9:27, “It is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (NKJV). This is an appointment no one will miss. As someone has noted, the statistics on death are appalling. One hundred out of one hundred people will eventually die. We are all terminally ill with a disease called death; we just don’t know when the end will come.
Before we go further, let’s stop and think about some important questions that people often ask about death and dying.
Is There a “Second Chance” after Death?
This is the popular view of many people who hope that those who did not accept Christ in this life will somehow have a second chance after death—either in the afterlife or perhaps through reincarnation. The answer is quite simple: There is no biblical support whatsoever for the notion of a “second chance.” Hebrews 9:27 declares that we die once and after that comes the judgment of God. Let no one be mistaken on this point. The only opportunity you will ever have to get right with God is the opportunity God affords you right now. If you dream of coming to God after you die, you are nursing a vain hope.
What about “Near-Death Experiences”?
Such experiences are very popular today. I’ve already mentioned the pioneering work of Raymond Moody. Other books in recent years have purported to tell of people who “died,” went to “heaven,” and then were given a “second chance” to return to the earth. Some of those books have been extremely popular, and a few have been embraced by Christians. However, a close inspection shows that most of those books embrace unbiblical heresy, either the notion that we are saved by doing good works or the idea that everyone is going to heaven in the end.
In thinking about this question, we need biblical balance. On one hand it’s undeniably true that some Bible characters did see the Lord before they died. Stephen saw Jesus just before he died in Acts 7. Paul was evidently given a vision of heaven—perhaps during his stoning at Lystra in Acts 14. He alludes to the event in 2 Corinthians 12. However, it’s important to say that such revelations did not happen often even in Bible times. Not every believer had or will have a revelation of heaven. Could such a thing happen today? Yes, but we shouldn’t expect it or base our hope of heaven upon a last-second experience.
Let’s also remember that Satan is the great deceiver. He can create scenes that seem to be scenes of heaven but are actually creations born in hell. Some near-death experiences are demonic in nature. You should never base your hope of heaven—or the hope of seeing a loved one in heaven—on a supposed vision or revelation. The only reliable ground given to us is the eternal, unchanging Word of God.
What Happens to Children Who Die?
This is obviously a very tender subject to many people. Parents want to know: Will I see my child again? The place to begin in answering this question is with the observation that the Bible doesn’t specifically address this question. However, we do know two things are true. First, children are not born innocent, but sinful. If children who die do go to heaven—and I believe they do—it is not because they are morally innocent in the sight of God. All of us are born with an inclination to sin that leads us away from God. Ephesians 2:1 says that we are spiritually dead by nature. That applies as much to young children as it does to adults. Second, we know that God’s grace is always greater than human sin. Romans 5:20 reminds us that where sin abounded, grace superabounded. God’s grace always goes far beyond sin’s disgrace.
I believe that God’s grace credits children with the merits of Jesus’ blood and righteousness so that children who die before they are old enough to believe are covered by His blood, and their entrance into heaven is made sure and certain. Thus they are saved by grace exactly as we are.
Can We Contact the Dead after They Are Gone?
The answer is no. Any attempt to dabble in spirit contact is strictly forbidden in the Bible. It is sometimes called necromancy or sorcery or dealing with familiar spirits. Remember, demons can masquerade as the dead. They can even mimic the voices of our loved ones and give information that only the dead person would have known (for more on this subject, see Leviticus 19:26-28, Leviticus 19:31; Deuteronomy 18:9-14; Galatians 5:20). In case this isn’t clear, let me make it plain. Do not attempt to contact the dead through any means at all—séances, parlor games, crystal balls, psychic readers, channelers, or mediums. You are involving yourself in that which God forbids. Leave the dead alone.
What Do You Say to Someone Who Has Lost a Loved One?
Over the years I have discovered that it really doesn’t matter what you say in terms of the precise words. Those who are grieving will not remember the words you say, but they will never forget that you cared enough to be there when they needed you. If you go with God’s love in your heart, he will give you any words you need to say. That means we don’t need to answer questions only God can answer. If we don’t know the spiritual state of the deceased, we shouldn’t speculate, either to offer false hope or lay a heavier burden on those who are left behind. God is both just and merciful, and in every case He will do what is right.
What Happens at the Moment of Death
Now we come to the central question: What happens at the very moment of death? I have already given the general answer: What happens when you die depends on what happens before you die. The Bible classifies the whole human race into two broad categories—the saved and the lost. The saved are those who have trusted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. The lost are those who haven’t. What happens to the saved is radically different from what happens to the lost.
. . . For the Saved
The Bible is abundantly clear on this point. When the saved die, they go directly into the presence of the Lord. At this point we remember the words of Jesus to the thief on the cross, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise” (Luke 23:43, emphasis added). This appears to be a straightforward promise that at the moment of death the repentant thief would pass from his life of crime and his agonizing death into the realm called “paradise.” This would seem to contradict the teaching called “soul-sleep,” which implies that at death a believer “sleeps” in a kind of suspended animation until the day of the resurrection. How could the thief be that very day in paradise if his soul went to sleep when he died? At the moment of death the believer passes immediately into the personal presence of Jesus Christ. This is our hope and comfort as we stand at the graveside of a loved one.
Paul said he had a desire “to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far” (Philippians 1:23, emphasis added). He also said, “We are confident, I say, and would prefer to be away from the body (that is, separated from the body by death) and at home with the Lord’ (2 Corinthians 5:8, emphasis added). These are the words of a man who believed that heaven would begin at the moment of his death. Was Paul looking forward to an unconscious slumber after his death? No! He was looking forward to the personal presence of Jesus Christ.
But that’s not the whole story. The soul goes to be with the Lord in heaven, and the body is buried until the day of resurrection when Jesus returns to the earth. 1 Thessalonians 4:14 says, “We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.” Here you have both sides of the truth. Christians who die are said to be “with Jesus” (that’s the soul in the conscious presence of the Lord) and “have fallen asleep in him” (that’s the body which “sleeps” in the grave). Listen to Paul’s description of that great reunion of body and soul: “For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first” (1 Thessalonians 4:16, emphasis added). Here is a clear promise of future bodily resurrection for the believer.
1 Corinthians 15:51-55 adds the crucial fact that our bodies will be “raised imperishable"—that is, with a body that is perfect in every way, free from the vestiges of death and decay In this life our bodies wear out, like a clock continually running down, but when we are raised, it will be with bodies that can never decay, never wear out, never suffer injury, never grow old, never get sick, and thank God, never die.
Many Christians have a wrong view of death. We think we’re going from the land of living to the land of dying. But the opposite is true. If you know Jesus, you are going from the land of dying to the land of the living. Here are some of the images the Bible uses for the death of a Christian: going to sleep and waking up in heaven . . . moving from a tent to a mansion . . . walking from the darkness into a well-lit room . . . coming home to see your family and friends . . . being set free from prison . . . taking a long journey to a new land . . . riding a chariot to the New Jerusalem . . . moving into a brand-new home . . . opening a gate to a brand-new world.
Christians have always faced death with confidence. The very word cemetery comes from a Greek word meaning “sleeping-place,” which refers to their confidence in the promise of the resurrection. Many pagans cremated their dead because they saw no further use for the human body. But Christians buried their dead as a statement of faith in the coming resurrection of the body. I have been asked more than once how God can raise the dead if the body has been burned or lost or vaporized in some terrible explosion. I don’t think that’s a difficult question at all. If you can raise the dead, you can raise the dead. Resurrection is God’s problem, not ours. We don’t need to know the how of the resurrection as long as we know the who.
As he lay dying, D. L. Moody proclaimed, “Earth recedes, heaven opens before me.” Catherine Booth, wife of the founder of the Salvation Army, cried out, “The waters are rising, but I am not sinking.” And George MacDonald, the English novelist, said, “I came from God, and I’m going back to God, and I won’t have any gaps of death in the middle of my life.” John Wesley summed up the faith of the early Methodists with four simple words: “Our people die well.”
When Benjamin Franklin was twenty-three years old, he wrote the following epitaph. His words catch the essence of the Christian doctrine of bodily resurrection:
The body of Benjamin Franklin
Printer;
Like the cover of an old book,
Its contents torn out,
And stripped of its lettering and gilding,
Lies here, food for worms.
But the work shall not be wholly lost:
For it will, as he believed, appear once more,
In a new and more elegant edition,
Revised and corrected
By the Author.
Once our bodies are raised, we will be with the Lord forever. Wherever he is, there we will be, rejoicing, praising, singing, and celebrating throughout the ages of eternity. 1 Thessalonians 4:17 says, “We will be with the Lord forever.” Speaking of his own return, Jesus said, “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. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am" (John 14:2-3, emphasis added).
What is ahead for us when we die?
  • Our soul goes into the conscious presence of the Lord.
  • Our body is buried until the day of resurrection.
  • When Christ returns, we will be raised bodily from the grave.
  • Body and soul reunited, we will be with the Lord forever.
As Tony Evans says, “Have a good time at my funeral, because I’m not going to be there.”
... For the Lost
Now we turn to briefly consider the fate of those who die without Jesus Christ. The lost fear death and with good reason. Job 18:14 calls death “the king of terrors.” Hebrews 2:14 reminds us that the devil holds people in bondage through the fear of death. And 1 Corinthians 15:26 calls death “the last enemy.”
Before saying any more, we should note one similarity between the fate of the saved and the lost. At the moment of death, the body is buried in the grave while the soul enters a new realm. For the believer, the moment of death brings him into the personal presence of Christ. For the unbeliever, death begins an experience of unending conscious punishment.
We can summarize the fate of the lost in four short statements:
1. At the moment of death the soul of the lost is sent to hell where it is in conscious torment. In Luke 16:19-31 Jesus told of a rich man who upon his death went to hell and suffered in the flames of torment. It does not matter whether you think this passage is literal or figurative. If you say it is literal, then it must be a terrible punishment. If it is figurative, the figure itself is so awful to consider that the reality must be much worse.
2. That punishment is eternal. Though this is debated in some circles today, Christians have united across the centuries in their belief that the Bible teaches an eternal punishment for those who do not know our Lord. Mark 9:43-48 speaks of the fire that is not quenched and the worm that does not die—a reference to the continuing existence of human personality in hell.
3. The body is raised at the Great White Throne judgment. Revelation 20:11-15 describes the awesome scene as the unsaved dead are raised to stand before God and receive their final sentence of doom.
4. The unsaved are then cast into the lake of fire where they will reside forever, eternally separated from the presence of Almighty God. If this is unbearable to think about, if we shrink from such a thought, then let us by all means do whatever is necessary to make sure that such a fate does not befall us or the ones we love the most.
This is the final destiny of those who do not know Jesus Christ. To make it more personal, it is the final destiny of your friends and neighbors, your loved ones, your parents, your brothers, your sisters, your children, if they die without Jesus Christ. And it is your destiny if you die without Jesus Christ. Let that thought linger in your mind. The reality of hell is more than just a theoretical doctrine. There is a place reserved for you in the lake of fire unless you by a conscious choice put your complete trust in Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior.
Dr. Barnhouse and the Shadow of Death
Only one question remains. How can you personally face your own death with confidence? Dr. Donald Grey Barnhouse—beloved Bible teacher of another generation—told the following story. While he was still a young man in the ministry, his first wife died. As he was returning from the funeral with his heartbroken children, their car came to a stoplight just as a massive truck pulled up next to them, blocking the light of the sun. Seeing the immense shadow that had overtaken them, Dr. Barnhouse asked his children if they would rather be run over by the truck or by the shadow of the truck. “By the shadow,” the children instantly replied, knowing that a shadow could not hurt them. “That’s what has happened to your mother,” he told them. “Death cannot hurt her because the Lord Jesus Christ took her to heaven. It is only the shadow of death that took her from us.”
If you know Jesus, you have nothing to fear when death knocks at your door. Death comes to all of us—it will come for you one of these days. Do you know Jesus? If so, then you need not live in fear. Death may be quick or slow, painful or painless, but when the moment comes, you will find yourself ushered into heaven where you will see Jesus face to face.
Some people wonder if they will have enough faith when they die. They worry about losing their faith and wonder if that will cause God to turn them away. When she was a young child in Holland Corrie ten Boom worried about her own death and whether or not she would have enough courage when the moment finally came. Her father—Papa ten Boom—knew of her fears and calmed her heart with these words: “Corrie, when I am going to take you on the train, when do I give you the ticket?” “Just before we get on board.” “That’s right. Dying is like taking a trip to see the Lord Jesus. He will give you whatever you need just when you need it. If you don’t have the courage now, it’s because you don’t need it now. When you need it, the Lord will give it to you, and you won’t be afraid.”
In another generation, believers talked about “dying grace.” They meant the special enablement God gives to his children as death draws near. Countless Christians who worried about their last moments on earth have exited this life full of faith because the Lord gave them grace just when they needed it most.
Jesus Has the Keys
Here are the words of Jesus in Revelation 1:18: “I am the Living One; I was dead, and behold I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.” Keys are a sign of authority. If you have the keys to my house, you can open it and go in anytime you want. It is often said that the devil owns the gates of hell—that is, he has the power of death. But that’s okay. The devil has the gates, but Jesus has the keys. We have nothing to fear in the moment of death for when the time comes, Jesus will personally unlock the gate and usher us into his presence.
“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” (John 11:25). If you believe in Jesus, you will never die. What an amazing promise. But believers die every day. Yes, but for the believer, death is merely the passing from this life with all its sorrows into life eternal in the presence of our Lord. The question is not: What happens when we die? But rather: What will happen when you die?
Death is not the end of the road, it is only a bend in the road. For the believer, death is the doorway to heaven. For the unbeliever, it is a passageway into unimaginable suffering. These things are true even if we do not fully understand them. They are true even if we don’t believe them.
What happens when you die depends on what happens before you die. Here is my final word to you: Make sure you’re ready to die so that when the time comes, you won’t be surprised by what happens next.
A Truth to Remember:
What happens when you die depends on what happens before you die.
Take a moment to calculate the number of days you have lived so far. Now take a guess as to how many more days you expect to live. What is the most eternally profitable way you can spend your remaining days?
  1. Have you ever had a near-death experience, or do you know anyone who has? Why is it crucial that such experiences always be evaluated by the standard of God’s Word?
  2. Why does the Bible contain such strong warnings against trying to contact the spirits of the dead? What happens when those warnings are ignored?
  3. Picture the moment of your own death. How do you expect it will happen? Do you fear that moment? Describe what will happen to you the first five minutes after your death.
  4. Do you believe in the resurrection of the dead? Why is this doctrine essential to the Christian faith? Name at least five Christians now dead who will be raised when Christ returns.
  5. Read 1 Corinthians 15:35-58 and Revelation 20:11-15. What does the first passage teach about the resurrection of the saved? What does the second passage teach about the resurrection of the lost?
  6. Do you believe in a place called hell where unbelievers are punished for eternity? Why or why not? Why is this doctrine sometimes denied today?
 

Matthew70

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That article there is why so many confess Jesus as their savior. What person would read that especially a child and not be scared to death. A eternal punishment. So we that are Christians are told from a young age we’re not good enough and if we don’t confess then pain and suffering forever will be your punishment. Does that really sound like free will and love? I believe but is it because of fear I do? So question does someone that commit suicide go to hell? I believe they don’t. I believe God has love and mercy for everyone. This world is so upside down. Sins are now twisting peoples thoughts and actions. Same as alternative lifestyles. There is so much Pollution and medicines and shots given to kids. No telling what it does to the makeup of individuals now. I mean look at Cain. He murdered because sin was in people’s lives. Their thoughts and actions. In other words tainted blood. Hence why Cain was son of Satan. He bred with Eve. That’s my belief. That was the bloodline of Satan. There is no way to know the truth while here on earth. Just have to wait till it’s time.
 

Bham 99

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That article there is why so many confess Jesus as their savior. What person would read that especially a child and not be scared to death. A eternal punishment. So we that are Christians are told from a young age we’re not good enough and if we don’t confess then pain and suffering forever will be your punishment. Does that really sound like free will and love? I believe but is it because of fear I do? So question does someone that commit suicide go to hell? I believe they don’t. I believe God has love and mercy for everyone. This world is so upside down. Sins are now twisting peoples thoughts and actions. Same as alternative lifestyles. There is so much Pollution and medicines and shots given to kids. No telling what it does to the makeup of individuals now. I mean look at Cain. He murdered because sin was in people’s lives. Their thoughts and actions. In other words tainted blood. Hence why Cain was son of Satan. He bred with Eve. That’s my belief. That was the bloodline of Satan. There is no way to know the truth while here on earth. Just have to wait till it’s time.
We have to accept Jesus to accept the atonement for our sins. we send ourselves to hell not God. Humans are who strayed from being righteous, not God.
 

GaWx

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@NCSNOW,
Thanks for the info. That is a basis for strong beliefs since it is based on the Bible. However, even so, still nobody knows for sure. One may feel it is for sure based on strong faith.

FWIW, I do believe there’s an eternal afterlife.
 

NCSNOW

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We have to accept Jesus to accept the atonement for our sins. we send ourselves to hell not God. Humans are who strayed from being righteous, not God.
Well said
Also on suicide question. Jesus died for All my sins. Past,present future. Sin is sin in Gods eyes. He has 0 tolerance for all of them. In Mans mind we have like degrees with them. Hard to understand but thats Bilical.
 

NCSNOW

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@NCSNOW,
Thanks for the info. That is a basis for strong beliefs since it is based on the Bible. However, even so, still nobody knows for sure. One may feel it is for sure based on strong faith.

FWIW, I do believe there’s an eternal afterlife.
Your welcome.
I know that I Know where ill spend eternity.
Please dont take that as a whoa is me,chest thump statement. Its my faith in Gods promise. Also its only because of what his son did. No way I could get to heaven on my merit,no matter how hard I try. Tell you when Im outside looking at this earth thats been created,weather patterns, human anatomy, physiology it just confirms what an awesome designer God is. Then I reflect on how he ,Jesus changed my old being day I got saved. My whole heart,attitude did a 180. Lord knows im still a work in progress,not perfected. None of us will be till we get a glorified body in heaven.
I just try to answer questions,topics in here with Bible truth. Last thing I ever want to do is get in Gods way being me. Which I probably do trafficking around political thread, uncle Don statements lol.
 
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I just believe ... and I truly believe do unto others and love your God ... now I am Christian, but do not feel I have any business whatsoever faulting good folks who are not ... so long as they are good folks ... and if they are not and if I can help them, then all the better ... but I do not think it is good to force myself on anyone ... unless I just want to cause rebellion and hate ...
I understand but what defines someone as "good?"
Now we are into the age old question ... and I am not that far up the food chain to decide ... but I know "good" when it happens ... from me or to me ...
Phil, I think you are an excellent poster, so I'm truly not meaning to be argumentive, but I echo Poimen's question here. I would personally agree with your description of "good," as would a lot of people. However, what about people who define good differently. Some people (a disturbing number in fact) think it is "good" to steal, hurt, rape, kill, etc. To them, gettting what you can, when you want is "good" and consistent with the animal world; therefore "natural." What makes our view of "good" any "better or more correct" than theirs? To have any real meaning behind the idea of being "good", there has to be a standard beyond what any of us think, otherwise it is just opinion.

So if "being good folks, as long as they are good folks" were enough, whoose opinion of "good folks' should we use to asses them with? Just because you or I think they are "good" does that make them so? Just because Hitler thought someone was "good" did that make them so?
 

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Phil, I think you are an excellent poster, so I'm truly not meaning to be argumentive, but I echo Poimen's question here. I would personally agree with your description of "good," as would a lot of people. However, what about people who define good differently. Some people (a disturbing number in fact) think it is "good" to steal, hurt, rape, kill, etc. To them, gettting what you can, when you want is "good" and consistent with the animal world; therefore "natural." What makes our view of "good" any "better or more correct" than theirs? To have any real meaning behind the idea of being "good", there has to be a standard beyond what any of us think, otherwise it is just opinion.

So if "being good folks, as long as they are good folks" were enough, whoose opinion of "good folks' should we use to asses them with? Just because you or I think they are "good" does that make them so? Just because Hitler thought someone was "good" did that make them so?
First, thanks for the compliment.
Second, you ask an age old question and I might not be wise enough to answer, but from a pedestrian angle, I'll try ... I think society, or the overwhelming majority of people innately "know" what good is (that ability to somehow "know" being a gift from God, which sets us above the animal kingdom); I think the vast majority of people ingrain that "good" into base-line societal norms, and that we then as individuals somehow strive to exceed the baseline, and when we do, we're doing God's will on an everyday level; as to "bad" people who define their own "good" ... God also gifted us with free will and how we use that is the ultimate measuring stick from on high ... Don't know if this makes sense (but it does to me anyways) ...
 

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Peace and Hope
5 Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we[a] have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we[b] boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we[c] also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.

6 You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. 7 Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were God’s enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Death Through Adam, Life Through Christ
12 Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned—

13 To be sure, sin was in the world before the law was given, but sin is not charged against anyone’s account where there is no law. 14 Nevertheless, death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who is a pattern of the one to come.

15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God’s grace and the gift that came by the grace of the one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Nor can the gift of God be compared with the result of one man’s sin: The judgment followed one sin and brought condemnation, but the gift followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of the one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God’s abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ!

18 Consequently, just as one trespass resulted in condemnation for all people, so also one righteous act resulted in justification and life for all people. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

20 The law was brought in so that the trespass might increase. But where sin increased, grace increased all the more, 21 so that, just as sin reigned in death, so also grace might reign through righteousness to bring eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
 
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First, thanks for the compliment.
Second, you ask an age old question and I might not be wise enough to answer, but from a pedestrian angle, I'll try ... I think society, or the overwhelming majority of people innately "know" what good is (that ability to somehow "know" being a gift from God, which sets us above the animal kingdom); I think the vast majority of people ingrain that "good" into base-line societal norms, and that we then as individuals somehow strive to exceed the baseline, and when we do, we're doing God's will on an everyday level; as to "bad" people who define their own "good" ... God also gifted us with free will and how we use that is the ultimate measuring stick from on high ... Don't know if this makes sense (but it does to me anyways) ...
I would agree completely, and in fact, am arguing exactly that. Specifically, that the ability to truly define good can only come from a standard outside of ourselves (God). I also agree that most people have this knowledge, even if they choose to ignore it ("God's law is written in our hearts") yet some do not recognize that knowledge as coming from Him.

Perhaps I misunderstood your post, or at least the context of it. It sounded to me like you were presenting the view that "being good folks" was enough (to get to heaven; ie. One can get to heaven by being good) in the context of the conversation about folks in other parts of the world whom had never heard or whom had lived prior to Christ. In other words; if they had never heard the Gospel, but were good folks, they would go to heaven. I would not necessarily agree with that as I do not think "being good" delivers us back into God's presence (only the sacrifice of Jesus does). And further, if being good could, how would we define good? But I agree the standard is God, not personal opinion of what is good.
 
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I did not know that folks who were never exposed to Christianity could not go to heaven ... where are all the good folks who lived in Africa, North America, South America, Asia, Australia ... for say 1700 plus years? I do not recall Jesus saying that Moses and Abraham and Isaac (who could not have "accepted" Jesus, being before His time), or American/Native Indians or Australian Aborigines or Eskimos, or Cave people are/were banned ...
That’s my thinking also. We have a God that loves us but creates people to just go to hell? That’s why I don’t discuss my Christianity much or get into discussions. I believe people have to find what they believe and not what others believe. Everyone has a different interpretation of the scriptures and what they mean. No one can truly say their way is completely wo a doubt the correct way and beliefs. When I say completely I mean with living actual no doubt proof.
The questions about people never having heard or living before Christ are very good and important questions. Many in the old testament, long before Jesus's time, worshipped God and knew there was a Messiah coming. Forgiveness resulting from Christ's sacrifice was also retroactive (God is not bound by time afterall). For people living after, other's have mentioned that "all men" have knowledge of God's existence but many choose to ignore it, or ascribe that knowlege to something else. Here are a couple of good responses, but there are many more if anyone wants to listen:


 

pcbjr

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I would agree completely, and in fact, am arguing exactly that. Specifically, that the ability to truly define good can only come from a standard outside of ourselves (God). I also agree that most people have this knowledge, even if they choose to ignore it ("God's law is written in our hearts") yet some do not recognize that knowledge as coming from Him.

Perhaps I misunderstood your post, or at least the context of it. It sounded to me like you were presenting the view that "being good folks" was enough (to get to heaven; ie. One can get to heaven by being good) in the context of the conversation about folks in other parts of the world whom had never heard or whom had lived prior to Christ. In other words; if they had never heard the Gospel, but were good folks, they would go to heaven. I would not necessarily agree with that as I do not think "being good" delivers us back into God's presence (only the sacrifice of Jesus does). And further, if being good could, how would we define good? But I agree the standard is God, not personal opinion of what is good.
Thank you; we do have a small bit of a difference but what's that among friends?
 

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Jesus said " I am the way, the truth and the life, no man cometh unto the Father but by me" Some may believe differently or not believe at all and that is their right, but it is what I believe. For those who believe there are many pathways to God, either they are right or Jesus was not who he said he was, totally your choice
 

Rain Cold

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Regarding the concept of "good", how can you know if you have been good enough? What's the empirical threshold? There has to be one, if this is the right answer.
 

Rain Cold

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The Bible is the one absolute, empirical threshhold. For me it has the final say.
I was talking about the viewpoint that good people are saved because they're good, though. What is the threshold for good? There has to be a line in the sand for this position to be valid: Good enough or not good enough.

Fortunately, the Bible is clear that Jesus is the only way and that we don't have to worry about whether or not we're good enough. Because we're not.
 

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Exactly. The problem with saying “good people go to heaven” is that how do you know if someone is “good?” We never know all that a person has done, or what kind of thoughts one harbors in his/her mind. How does God determine if one is good? Does he grade on a curve? I mean, surely some are more good than others, right?

This is why Jesus and the NT raised the bar so high that no one could possibly make it over on his/her own. If you have harbored hate/anger in your heart toward anyone, that’s the same as murder. If you have looked at another with lust, that’s the same as the physical act of adultery. The truth is none of us are good in comparison to a perfectly holy God.

But praise be to God that anyone—regardless of what they have done—can be made holy in God’s sight through faith in Christ.

For he who knew no sin became sin so that we might become the righteousness of God.
 

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So I've asked this question in other forums and to friends and tend to get the same answer over and over so I'll ask it here. I may have already way earlier and dont remeber if I did or not.

What's the going take on the omnipotent paradox.

Can god create a stone he cannot lift?
 

Arcc

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So I've asked this question in other forums and to friends and tend to get the same answer over and over so I'll ask it here. I may have already way earlier and dont remeber if I did or not.

What's the going take on the omnipotent paradox.

Can god create a stone he cannot lift?
We'd never know. With each rock he would create to test his strength, he would move and thus have to create a bigger rock, which he would move, and thus make a even bigger rock which he would move and this would continue through eternity.
 

Rain Cold

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So I've asked this question in other forums and to friends and tend to get the same answer over and over so I'll ask it here. I may have already way earlier and dont remeber if I did or not.

What's the going take on the omnipotent paradox.

Can god create a stone he cannot lift?
The answer to the following question is the key to answering the above question: How many miles is the moon from Mother's Day?
 

Matthew70

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So I've asked this question in other forums and to friends and tend to get the same answer over and over so I'll ask it here. I may have already way earlier and dont remeber if I did or not.

What's the going take on the omnipotent paradox.

Can god create a stone he cannot lift?
No. The question is hypothetical, but even if we were going to take it literally there are a couple of points to consider. One is that God is outside of (therefore not bound by) space, time, and matter. He is not bound by the same laws of creation (gravity for example) the rest of us are, so size and weight would have no meaning. Further, God would not have to "lift" things. He created the universe through his word (thought/mind...) so I doubt moving a large object would be an issue. But another issue is that we are asking the question from the perspective of finite beings, in the the created universe, who are bound by it's laws. Our undertanding of the question itself is also bound by our own understanding and the laws we know. By our understanding, God cannot do things that violate logic, such as making a one ended stick or a square circle. Making a stone He cannot lift would be illogical based on the nature of God Himself, as I hinted at above. It's certainly possible there are aspects of logic (and most other concepts for that matter) we can't understand with our limited minds that aren't bound by natural laws, that we'll only learn of in God's presence. However, God also uses logic and laws consistent with His nature so He would not be able to violate His own nature.

Just curious, what is the answer you normally get and what is your take? Why do you ask?
 
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Slightly off topic but I want to give a shout out to everyone in this thread. I was reading some religious posts on another forum and the intolerance, name calling, and vitrol was just sad to behold. Too bad we can't get along better, we're all brothers and sisters trying to make sense of our world after all. Thanks to everybody for being cordial and respectful here!

(Where's the group hug emoticon?)
 
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