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Do you care whether your children believe in G-d? - Page 9

post #161 of 240
Kidzaplenty wrote:
Quote:
The way I see it is like this. We are already condemned, by OUR own actions. Yes, by nature we are sinners. So without any help we are destined to die and go to hell (the payment of sin is death). But my God sent His only Son to us to lead us back to Him. MAN tortured and killed him. But because of His sacrific, His blood in ALLOWING man to kill him, He paid the debt for sin, which by it's very nature HAD to be in blood.
Gee. Well, I am a Christian too--I have accepted Jesus into my heart, I am studying the same Gospels you are, and I strive every day to live in a Christlike way--and I don't see it like that at all!!! We human beings by our basic nature are tempted to sin, so without any help we will tend to waste our lives in sin and selfishness. The "help" that leads us to a better way of living may come from following the way of life Jesus taught, from praying to and being guided by God Himself, or from other people who draw us into the (too-often-ignored) Holy Spirit that is within us all and is also a part of God. To me personally, all three of these forms of help are very important, and I believe that completely rejecting any one of them makes salvation impossible, but some people may use one of them more than the others. God has made many attempts throughout history to get people to turn away from sin and climb spiritually higher. One of these was sending Jesus, whose primary roles were (1) to teach us how to live and how to relate to God and to people (2) to live as a human being for 33 years so that he can advise God on what it's really like to be human and thus help Him reach us better. God's plan also included letting Jesus be betrayed and killed by human beings to show us how horrible are the consequences of going along with the crowd and failing to stand up for justice. Jesus did not allow himself to be killed because God wouldn't forgive our sins unless He got to drink some blood. He allowed it so that we would experience the horror of losing our greatest teacher and seeing him suffer because of our actions (and inactions) and so that this dramatic story would be told for generations to draw our attention to the things he taught while he was here. THAT is the way Jesus shows us the path to salvation. His dying was not a sacrifice (it's how he got back to heaven!); his sacrifice was living as a human, which for all its pleasures is a BIG step down from being divine in heaven!

I'm not saying that only people who believe exactly this are "true Christians." I'm saying I am a true Christian, and this is what I believe. It's different from Kidzaplenty, but hey, we all are one in Christ Jesus.
post #162 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnviroBecca
Kidzaplenty wrote:

Gee. Well, I am a Christian too--I have accepted Jesus into my heart, I am studying the same Gospels you are, and I strive every day to live in a Christlike way--and I don't see it like that at all!!! We human beings by our basic nature are tempted to sin, so without any help we will tend to waste our lives in sin and selfishness. The "help" that leads us to a better way of living may come from following the way of life Jesus taught, from praying to and being guided by God Himself, or from other people who draw us into the (too-often-ignored) Holy Spirit that is within us all and is also a part of God. To me personally, all three of these forms of help are very important, and I believe that completely rejecting any one of them makes salvation impossible, but some people may use one of them more than the others. God has made many attempts throughout history to get people to turn away from sin and climb spiritually higher. One of these was sending Jesus, whose primary roles were (1) to teach us how to live and how to relate to God and to people (2) to live as a human being for 33 years so that he can advise God on what it's really like to be human and thus help Him reach us better. God's plan also included letting Jesus be betrayed and killed by human beings to show us how horrible are the consequences of going along with the crowd and failing to stand up for justice. Jesus did not allow himself to be killed because God wouldn't forgive our sins unless He got to drink some blood. He allowed it so that we would experience the horror of losing our greatest teacher and seeing him suffer because of our actions (and inactions) and so that this dramatic story would be told for generations to draw our attention to the things he taught while he was here. THAT is the way Jesus shows us the path to salvation. His dying was not a sacrifice (it's how he got back to heaven!); his sacrifice was living as a human, which for all its pleasures is a BIG step down from being divine in heaven!

I'm not saying that only people who believe exactly this are "true Christians." I'm saying I am a true Christian, and this is what I believe. It's different from Kidzaplenty, but hey, we all are one in Christ Jesus.
I agree with all of this.
post #163 of 240
I hope my children accept the natural world for what it is; strive to learn about and understand reality through science and art; study, search, then reject organized religion completely; and connect with life and nature deeply enough to be satisfied with THIS world and THIS life.
post #164 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by oregongirlie
and connect with life and nature deeply enough to be satisfied with THIS world and THIS life.
I really like this, whether one connects with an organized religion or not.
post #165 of 240
It is very important to me that my children believe in God. Having said that I am not the model Christian. I don't go to church regularly. I'm doing good to get ther once a month. But I feel that God is part of my heritage and that I must pass the flame to my children. Ultimately I know that it is up to my children to decide what they believe. This I understand. I guess it's important to me to let them know what I believe and share my knowledge and insight's with them. I want them to have a personal relationship with God b/c I find that life without that is never really complete for me. I am very into study and hope my children will search out the answers for themselves as well.
post #166 of 240
Quote:
Having said that I am not the model Christian. I don't go to church regularly.
Being a model Christian doesn't have much if anything to do with going to church. God does not require church attendance for salvation. Church is just a resource that some people find helpful in guiding their behavior the rest of the week.
post #167 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by EnviroBecca
Being a model Christian doesn't have much if anything to do with going to church. God does not require church attendance for salvation. Church is just a resource that some people find helpful in guiding their behavior the rest of the week.
BUT, there are many, many people who do not agree. And they have no qualms about telling that to others.
post #168 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kidzaplenty
I guess I am in the minority here. But I do care whether my children believe in God.

I am a Christian. I want my children to be Christian. I totally believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that He is the only way for us to get to Heaven. I also believe that it is my job to train my children up in this belief. I also teach them that the that although we love everyone, and that we are not better than anyone else, we are right in our beliefs. And it is our ministry to teach others of Jesus.

I teach my children that every moment of every day, every action that we take should bring glory to God. And that we are our happiest when we please Him.

So, yes, I do VERY much care whether or not they believe. I make no appologies or excuses. This is our belief and this is how we will raise our children to believe.
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post #169 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by oregongirlie
I hope my children accept the natural world for what it is; strive to learn about and understand reality through science and art; study, search, then reject organized religion completely; and connect with life and nature deeply enough to be satisfied with THIS world and THIS life.

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post #170 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by trinasmom
IMHO God gave us all a brain. When He told Eve in the garden of Eden not to eat the apple it was up to her to listen and do it. Instead like a defiant child she ate the apple. Therefore spiraling man into being born sinners. Yes, God knew how it was going to turn out, why then would he give us another chance? He sent His Son to die for us to give us the gift of Salvation. Would you do that for mankind? I sure wouldn't. God lets us decide whether to acept him or reject him. I am a Christian. Won't apologize for it. I don't walk in fear of God. I am in awe and wonder of Him. PPs stated they were once Christians. I wonder how you became an unChristian? I belive once you ask Jesus into your heart you are saved forever. There is no way to become unsaved., to my knowledge. I have always wondered if as some people believe there is no God, and you spent your whole life living as though there was, what do you have to lose? However, if you spent your whole life living as though there was no God and come to find out in the hereafter there is a God, I fear you'll have everything to lose.
I have a lot to lose by being a Christian, but, according to your thinking, it doesn't matter. I was a born again Christian 20 years ago, so I guess I'm covered either way--according to your thinking. Other Christians think otherwise, though, they see me burning in hell with Gandhi.
post #171 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by RubyWild
I have a lot to lose by being a Christian, but, according to your thinking, it doesn't matter. I was a born again Christian 20 years ago, so I guess I'm covered either way--according to your thinking. Other Christians think otherwise, though, they see me burning in hell with Gandhi.
Lucky they're not the ones doing the judging!
post #172 of 240
Oh, to answer the question ... yes, I care.
post #173 of 240
Yes, I care whether my children believe in God or not. My dh and I are raising them TO believe in God!

post #174 of 240
My views are the same as Ruby Wild and Boing82 and that crew.
post #175 of 240
I definitely agree with pp's who talked about children going through a "religious exploration stage" that was me too! My parents (mom-agnostic/united and dad-athiest/now druid) really encouraged it and I am thankful to them for that. I was never baptized but I did experiance a plethora of religions and took what spoke to me and made up my own I call it: The religion according to Laura--and I am a devout follower! In all seriousness though, I will encourage exploration and while I will answer the best I can, I feel that spirituality is such an individual thing I will probably follow my parents lead and (when she is old enough) send her out to "find her own way" by experiance. Mind you, while religion may intertwine morals and spirituality I perfer to seperate them. I will always try to model and teach morality and ethics, but I believe that my dd needs to find her own spiritual path without my influence. Then, I will accept whatever she chooses...even if, like me, each religion was only a "brief stopping point".
post #176 of 240
I want my child to grow up with a strong sense of fairness, understanding the importance of honesty, knowing that she has a purpose in this world, and knowing that she is loved deeply. All of those can be part of one's religious belief, and one's belief in a deity (or several), but that isn't the only way for those ends to be achieved. If a belief in God helps lead her to her enlightenment, I will be happy for her. And if she takes some other path to that enlightenment, I'll be just as happy.

I can't put on some show of religiosity for her, though. I can explain what I believe are the positive aspects of (some) organized religions -- mostly community-building and socialization, imo. I can also explain that there are lots of things we simply don't understand yet, and may not ever be able to understand without taking a leap of faith.
post #177 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kidzaplenty
OK...

I have been contemplating asking this question, until now I resisted the urge. But I can't resist any longer. So here goes....

Why is it that so many of you would be disappointed or upset if your children became "Christian"? Why is the Christian God the one that you really don't want your children to worship? Why would it be different if they were to begin worshiping nature, or Buddah, Allah, Baal, or any other god?
This is kind of a different perspective on it...

DH and I were both raised Christian, but we have since converted to the Messianic movement. Messianics believe in the Bible, God and Yeshua (Jesus) but we don't hold to Christian doctine or theology. Our worship style is very Jewish in look and feel. No offense meant here, but for our family converting to Christianity would be like taking a step back in many regards. We've spent so much time and taken so much effort to purge ourselves of Christian thinking that it would break my heart if my children fell right back into that.

DH and I believe that faith cannot simply be felt or believed- it must be acted. We don't believe a person isn't "saved" by saying some magical words, but but understanding who God is, who Yeshua is and by trying to live in a way that honors God (Torah observance, loving other people, etc).

I have many Christian friends and I do not have a problem with Christians at all! However, because Christianity has compromised its fundamental beliefs and no longer teaches or practices a Torah lifestyle, we could not condone our children converting to Christianity.

I would like to see that by our modeling the godly life, taking pleasure in following Torah and creating memories to our holidays and holy days (Passover, Hanukkah, Purim, etc) they will want to stay within our religious beliefs. We plan to read the Bible to our children and get involved with other Messianic families, a congregation, whatever to build that bond.

Kristi
post #178 of 240
No I don't care. What she believes is NOT my decision to make. When she asks me questions I will tell her what I believe and what different people believe and tell her it is her decision to explore and make. I think it is just as wrong to push a child into atheism as it is to push them into a religion. It is really the same kind of thing, either way you are telling them what to believe.

I do hope that she doesn't become so involved in a religion that she allows other people to think for her and speak for her. This goes for any religion.
post #179 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by PrettyBird
No I don't care. What she believes is NOT my decision to make. When she asks me questions I will tell her what I believe and what different people believe and tell her it is her decision to explore and make. I think it is just as wrong to push a child into atheism as it is to push them into a religion. It is really the same kind of thing, either way you are telling them what to believe.

I do hope that she doesn't become so involved in a religion that she allows other people to think for her and speak for her. This goes for any religion.
I have to disagree.

I'm not a Christian and I don't believe we have to "ask Jesus in our hearts" in order to "be saved." Even if I did, I have no way of forcing anyone to believe anything. However, If I believe there is an absolute truth and there are right and wrong ways to live, and that we will be rewarded and or punished for our deeds, I feel I should definately encourage good behavior. To me, it's like saying I won't encourage my child to eat vegetables because that is her choice to make when she's older. Or I won't encourage my child to learn to read because that is her choice to make when she's older.

If you don't believe in absolute truth or stuff like that, then your way makes sense, but telling someone who believes our actions will be judged in the end not to encourage their children to make appropriate choices accordingly is not really possible.

I guess what I'm saying is that our individual understandings of absolute truth must be the same if we are even going to be able to discuss this kind of topic logically. If our foundations are different, it isn't possible for either side to understand how the other can think the way they do. Yk?

Kristi
post #180 of 240
Quote:
Originally Posted by eilonwy
I haven't finished this entire thread yet, but I would be disappointed if my children became Christians because most Christianity is, by it's very nature, exclusionary. It strikes me as exceedingly arrogant to say "My way is the one and only way! Nobody can relate to their spirituality unless they do it this way!" Come now; we don't all wear the same size shoes. We don't all have the same length gait. We can't all relate to the physical world in exactly the same way, so how could we possibly relate to the spiritual world in exactly the same way? It just doesn't make sense to me.

There are Christians who are far more open-minded than this, but the overwhelming majority are not. They adhere to doctrines which expressly state that things must be done this way or they may as well not be done at all. I can't accept that, and I'd be extremely disappointed (perhaps even despondant) if my children could.
This sums up my feelings on Christianity pretty well (and more gently than I would have phrased it ). I honestly see the modern Christian religion to be the near antithesis of everything Jesus stood for, but maybe it's that the conservative Christians are just yelling so loud that I can't hear the rest of them. It feels like a very hateful religion to me, personally, which makes me more than a bit angry because I think the actual teachings and actions of Jesus were really cool. I can see us hanging out and having some really awesome conversations I don't think that about many Christians

I hope my boys feel that there is *something* bigger than themselves. I hope they have a sense that there is *something* that unifies everything, from humanity to nature to the universe. I hope they develop a spiritual, mystical awareness.

I think those beliefs are what create thoughtful, loving & creative people.
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