There certainly are a ton of mean things to say to people from Bible verses; I know that first hand! :-D Especially from the non-peacemaker Jesus. His words are some of the harshest, cruelest things I've ever read. But then, he didn't claim to be a peacemaker.
Anyway, I believe in everyone's right to follow whomever and love whomever they wish. If someone wants to follow and love X(christ), that's fine. But so often, I've found that those same lovers of X do not take him for his complete life. Meaning, they cherry pick out the words and examples they find meaningful (a la the cafeteria style of spirituality) and ditch/ignore the rest.
Which is a major disservice to whatever deity one subscribes!!
I think that one should either know the sacred text of their religion EXTREMELY WELL, in it's entirety, or not be a professed follower at all. If one claims that the Bible is the inerrant word of God, then know it back and forth and reconcile the immense contradictions inherent in that flawless, God-inspired 'holy' book.
I just don't think it's enough to say 'God is Love', therefore, I love God'. One really needs to know of whom they love before ever claiming such allegiance.
Original Sin is a concept that serves a socioeconomic service quite well and has been employed to oppress people for some time. If one is born bad and can only be redeemed via 'the blood of X', then anyone outside that relationship is damned, any which way you cut it.
And of course, there is the Xian Tradition and then there is the Biblical texts. Many self-proclaimed Xians are well versed (pun intended) in the Xian Tradition but do not know they sacred text very well at all. Or know just a few key verses to go out and 'witness' with a colored book (black for 'sin', red for X's blood, white for 'sins washed away', gold for Heaven's streets, etc.)
I had to laugh at the idea of 'unoriginal sin'. Indeed! As Solomon is alleged to say, there is nothing new under the sun.
It's called TOLERANCE.
Thanks in advance everyone!
Words like "mean," "cruel," "chauvinistic," "absurd," and "silly" are simply not appropriate when discussing other peoples' faiths. Nor are condescending admonitions to "Look honestly at your Bibles" and "keep your thinking caps on." To make sweeping generalizations that all believers in a particular religion are sheeple and can't do any better because they simply "know no ther way" is extremely disrespectful and brimming with contempt.
Just imagine how a person of, say, the Hindu faith would feel if someone came into the Spirituality forum ridiculing Hinduism. Would you EVER write something like, "I find it ridiculous to pray to blue elephants and 8-legged idols....people in India must be really stupid to buy that crap, must be because they've never been exposed to rational thought..." No! That would be not only disrespectful and intolerant but also would display a very superficial understanding of the religion and would not give a person credit for having a mind. All I am asking is that people extend the same courtesy to Chrisians as is extended to the members of the other minority faiths here--like Islam and Hinduism.
If I find christianity to be "mean and scary", and others have been equally traumatized, well, that is just our exp.
Sorry to have gone OT.
My main complaint with Christianity is it's exclusivity (God's Chosen People), and all the fear mongering I read in the Bible, threats of hellfire for those who don't believe, and that ties back in to the original thread.
While everyone knows the story of how he appeared as a snake in Genesis, I do not think the Bible is specific on whether or not Lucifer took Physical form during the temptations of Christ. It states he came to him but does not say whether or not he took form.
I think that regardless of our particular spiritual beliefs, many of us feel that the threat of the devil was used to manipulate us in the past. It is one thing to believe in the existence of the devil--quite another to put great fear into children. I had an uncle who came back from a missions trip full of tales of demon-possessed children. Anytime I had questions about religion (such as, "Will my friend who goes to church X go to Heaven, too?") I was warned that the devil was planting these thoughts in my head. Now, I think that questioning religion is important part of spirituality, but back then I felt terrified and powerless. About this time, I became irrationally afraid of the dark and would chant hymns to overcome my fear. It was too much for a five-year-old.
I would never suggest that a belief in the devil is somehow inferior or vice versa, but I do think that some caution should be used when presenting the concept, especially to children.
I couldn't feel at peace spiritually in a religion that includes the devil, but we all find peace in different places.
Anyway, I find it odd that when some people find out that I don't believe in god, they ask with much fear if I worship the devil. I have not met any atheists yet who believe in the devil. It seems logical to me that you would either believe in both (god and the devil) or neither.
From looking around on this thread and following some links posted on other threads in the spirituality board, I figured out that I am a secular humanist! Kinda neat to know that there are different types of atheism. And I think that telling someone I am a secular humanist will not be quite so offputting to people who do believe. Atheism (as a term) makes many people uncomfortable (not on this board but IRL) so I think that more education may occur from using the SH term.
GOOD NEWS: The devil loses! God Wins!!!!! That is what Christ died for.
I am so sorry that some of you grew up with parents and/or a church that used scare tactics and abused scripture to control. It is unfortunate that the Biblical teachings about satan are misinterperted and used abusively. Please understand that this is not what CHRIST taught, and not what most Christians believe.
Satan's power is not the opposite of God! The devil is a created being and does not have "evil power" equaling the "good" of God. That would make him a god, and the Scriptures are clear that he is not. Satan is an angel created by God who had free will just like we do. He chose to use his free will for ill.
It is that of an opposing attorney.
Kind of like when you go to the "Heavenly Court" and present your life, well, there's two sides to everything, right? So there's the opposing attorney.
(I'm trying to remember in the movie "Defending Your Life" who played the opposing attorney, she was great ...)
But, while Satan may not Biblically be God's equal, I don't think many people understand it that way. How many times have we seen the image on TV, of a little angel on a person's right shoulder, and a little devil on the left? Whispering and getting equal time?
Puts a whole different perspective on the issue of this fellow doesn't it?
He's just an angel with a job to do.(if you're of an Abrahamic faith that is.)
|... by DaryLLL
... But when the Jews rejected him and killed him ...
And said churches have even made apologies, of sorts, to the Jewish people for having promulgated this canard over the centuries ...
Many, many, many years of hatred and torture and murder resulted from this specific statement, which is historically incorrect.
Go and learn.
Now back to our regularly scheduled thread ...
I believe that most Christian churches also teach that satan is the accuser and tempter of the brotherhood. It is t.v. and hollywood that have given him an image of the personification of evil. Hollywood is probably not the best place to take your spiritual teachings from.
It has always seemed odd too me that any Christian would have a problem with anybody killing Jesus because if they hadn't we would all be going to hell.
And as far as I am concerned people didn't kill jesus. sin did.
The truest answer to violence is love. The truest answer to death is life. The only prevention for violence is for the heart to have no violence within it. We cannot prevent evil through any system devised by mankind. But we can grapple with evil and defeat it, but only with love—real love.
Yammer, perhaps I got on your case because the wording was along the lines of "they did it, that's why antisemitism," as opposed to "this lie is told by antisemites."
As far as the Temple priests, etc., what's your point? So it's okay to throw the blame there?
As a child I was called "Christ-killer" to my face, and hardly think that the fine points of who did what to whom was of any interest to the other kids shouting it (and throwing rocks) at us kids in the Jewish school playground.
Back to your topic, folks.
quoted from Dennis McKinsey's website
The Bible I've got didn't even have the name Lucifer in the index, so I did an online search and found him mentioned by name in the KJV.
He is mentioned in one, and only one place, Isaiah 14. He doesn't, to me, seem to be associated with Satan at all. He seems to be, after reading and rereading it several times, in several different translations, a generic oppressor of the Jews, any king who may have oppressed them. He thought to be better than "the gods," to take a seat on the mountain where the gods assemble, and to be better than the Most High of the gods.
But then he falls to earth and goes to Sheol and/or the pit. As Satan is thought to walk the earth, he can't be Lucifer, as L is in Sheol, surrounded by worms, as a decaying body.
So, the verse uses a polytheistic pantheon, isn't about Satan, but someone called a bright star, an earthly oppressor who thought he was pretty important. Seems like the popular understanding has moved pretty far from the original and fairly obscure text.
I hope you are not more interested in proving your point than in studying the scriptures. I hope I am wrong. I wish you well in your search for truth....I pray that you find God in a way that is relevant to you. God is love, and I pray that His love will encompass you on your path.
Going from verse and book to verse and book is one way to study the bible, I guess it is popular with christian study groups. I am trying to read the bible from my own unique standpoint, as my life has brought me to a certain place. I see it as a historical document, altho ancient, and mixed up (many different traditions), full of hyperbole, song, dreams, mythical beings, philosophy, cultural appropriation, etc, etc.
I don't know if you feel this way, but I have heard some christians feel that the bible is a big jigsaw puzzle, and they try to fit it all together into one picture.
Others, some christians and others, feel it is several different jigsaw puzzles, with many pieces missing. For now, that is one useful analogy for me, altho, who knows, I may change my mind, which I try to keep open.
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