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the world is flat & dinosaurs & humans lived at the same time
May 8, 2009
10:19 pm
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free
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Here are some of the problems with fundamental Christianity as we "know" it today. Perhaps these issues can be addressed?

1)The blood atonement of Jesus Christ. The doctrine of blood atonement illustrates a God who demanded the human sacrifice of not only an innocent man, but of his own child. Any God who demands murder to appease justice would be unworthy of worship or adoration.

2)People cannot be evil by nature. People are not inherently evil. They can't be.

3) A devil which leads people into sin enables people to escape responsibility for their own actions. Humans have produced enough devils of our own without having to create or envision a variety or "species" in order to explain the evil acts that we do to each other. Seems we, both as individuals and as a group, should be accountable to God for our acts of inhumanity towards each other.

4) The doctrine of hell and eternal torment comprises, by definition, immoral beliefs due to its vengeful nature. The doctrine of final judgment perverts and distorts mercy, compassion, and forgiveness.

There are many issues with all religions, especially fundamentals. But these 4 issues (perhaps there others) seem to be the biggies. And "I don't know" doesn't seem to appease inquiring minds.

free

May 9, 2009
1:16 am
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Mary,

If you knew me, you would know that I do not have to be right. I'm very humble, and getting moreso in my old age. But followers of Jesus Christ, know that He was right, and that really is all that matters. I am not perfect and I make mistakes, but as a follower of Jesus Christ, life is good.

We believe that we have a gift to give away to anyone, and we call that truth. Anyone can believe in God, the muslims, buddhists, etc. they all believe there is a God. But Jesus Christ?...He's the most powerful person in the world. And whter you choose to believe it or not, He's coming back. Do I care if you beleive that or not? Yes, but I don't lose sleep over it. You offer a service to those you work with. Surely you believe that what you do is right. I'm the same way, I believe that Jesus is right.

I'm dropping out of these conversations at this time.

May 9, 2009
1:23 am
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on my way
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JESUS

May 9, 2009
1:43 am
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CraigCo
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Destiny,

You asked, "Instead of hiding behind someone elses words or the words in the bible, why cant someone use their own and talk about what is happening in their life today not what supposedly happened hundreds of years ago?"

Cause that's all they've got and
it's clear that it only serves to really drive people even further away from Xianity, don't it!?

i.e. I was just about to give my life to Christ, then I started reading this thread & now I've changed my mind. Don't want to be associated with nutty Sun worshipers anymore.

Hmm...maybe I just need a good ol fashioned exorcism er sumthin?

May 9, 2009
1:59 am
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free
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"as a follower of Jesus Christ, life is good."

Agreed. Jesus was and is an awesome being and his teachings priceless.

"I'm dropping out of these conversations at this time. "

Well that's a bummer. IMO. You have such great insight into these spiritual paths. People follow in different ways. People interpret in different ways. And that's okay really, as it's how we grow.

I say agree to disagree when need be, and pick each others brains for new thoughts and ideas at other times. After all, Jesus was an enigma, not well understood. That's still true I suspect.

You've such a gentle spirit OMW. Over time you've shown the patience of Job. There are problems and issues with many of the teachings. But not all people dismiss the teachings due to these problems and issues. There's something there, and those who seek, find. some people need answers, resolution, and it's through discussions such as this that those resolutions are found, answers discovered, new thoughts pondered.

I'm drawn to it like a bug to the light. I just know there's something there, but I have problems with some things. And I for one have always valued greatly your input.

free

May 9, 2009
2:45 am
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marypoppins
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Here are the Imagine lyrics, again:

Imagine there's no Heaven

It's easy if you try

No hell below us

Above us only sky

Imagine all the people

Living for today

Imagine there's no countries

It isn't hard to do

Nothing to kill or die for

And no religion too

Imagine all the people

Living life in peace

You may say that I'm a dreamer

But I'm not the only one

I hope someday you'll join us

And the world will be as one

Imagine no possessions

I wonder if you can

No need for greed or hunger

A brotherhood of man

Imagine all the people

Sharing all the world

You may say that I'm a dreamer

But I'm not the only one

I hope someday you'll join us

And the world will live as one

May 9, 2009
3:53 am
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Craig- Hi. The last time I looked this was a counseling site. Can you imagine if someone were to seek out professional counseling and all they wanted to do was to recite scripture?

I dont think counseling is about discussing Jesus life and problems but about discussing our lives and issues that brought us to this site to begin with.

I suppose as long as we have Jesus to hide behind we dont have to deal with ourselves and as long as we have him or the devil to blame we dont have to be responsible.

If someone is all that hell bent on Jesus and Gods will then all they have to do is type that into a search and go to whatever site that leads to.

The only seeds some of these people are planting is a seed of doubt in my mind.

May 9, 2009
3:58 am
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Free- Your input was well thought out.

But, do you think that the bible is symbolic as opposed to literal?

I believe in the holy spirit.

May 9, 2009
1:31 pm
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bevdee
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When Mary first started this thread, I immediately understood the analogy to the bible and the inaccuracies. I wondered how long it would take before it degenerated to the preaching that has occured here. And the offense the Xtians stated at the differing opinions, jokes, irreverencies.

Bitsy - I am always slightly offended that discussions about other faiths are not respected, but what good does it do to state that? Is my being offended by your opinion and comments about Xtianity and the very fallacious Bible enough to make you stop? I wonder if Mary read the first response to this and thought, "Oh I try to start a conversation about the inaccuracies in the bible and this is what I get"?

This time, I have watched this thread and wondered if those that are so vehemently pro-Xtian, anti -any-other-belief in the athiest threads spend a lot of time going to other sites to interject their warnings about a blistering hell on the non-believers. There's a site I have visited as long as I have this one- more Hindu and Buddhist. There are a couple of regular members that always ad nauseum, jump right on non-Xtian threads, to point out why their way is right, to offer their services as an Xtian. As if any other way of thinking is frightening to them, so they try to control the conversation by veering it to their belief, then if the thread starter or anyone else disagrees, they'll be told they are going to hell. Just like being in church, "religion" or not. That's just the way a lot of Xtians are. Winning souls to Jaysus.

In any forum I have visited, I have observed that most people that are considering and discussing other faiths are not ignorant of Xtian scripture, so that's why the copy/pastes of scriptures- without discussion get ignored. Overkill - like billboards all along the highway, or monologue. Not dialogue.

Usually the most though provoking discussions are the ones where actual study and comparison of many scriptures and writings, and deep introspection is possible. It's usually the ones that try to use scripture that have the least knowledge of it. IMO.

On my Way, do you know the scriptures that quote Jaysus warning against hell for non-belief?

Mary? godluvya, you rock.

May 9, 2009
2:25 pm
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This will tell you how long ago it was...I once had a college professor who said the only way to discuss abortion with ANYone was to page yourself and remove yourself from the conversation. That is about how I feel about religion now. I am glad we can discuss religion on this side because I do like ALL the words to the Serenity Prayer and can only post them on this side due to what some of my fellow Christians have done.

All of us here are damaged in some way or we wouldn't be here. Some are damaged by being continually beaten over the head with religion like I once was and some are damaged from a relationship like I currently am.

Some of us had alcoholics for parents and some of us have had other things happen to us. All ANY of us can do is muddle our way through life the best that we can.

Peace and Healing to ALL of you.

Bitsy

May 9, 2009
2:40 pm
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bevdee
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Bitsy,

What I was trying to point out, without bringing all my childhood trauma into the discussion (not sure why you did that, was that what is offensive discussion to some is not to others. Your first post in this thread offended me, but I just watched to see how it would evolve. I guess "offense" depends on your perception.

Like your example of the abortion topic, when I get offended at the tactics that some people use to distract a conversation, whether they are scriptural, emotional, or whatever, I back off to evaluate where the fear or offense is stemming from.

Have you ever noticed that the Xtian threads that are respected by the non-Xtians kind of die out? Not enough variety, I spose. Re-runs.

May 9, 2009
2:48 pm
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Hepburn
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I think what needs to happen (and has started happening) is a NEW spiritual revolution of enlightenment.

The bible was written how many eons ago? People back then lived differently, spoke differently. The civilization of humans was running amok. I've read and have seen movies of what people used to do back then. I can see why the "fear of God" was used to try and control people.

And here we humans are once again running amok but in a different era. We live differently and speak differently. I think human beings (well at least most of us) have evolved to where we need inspiration that fits with our era.

Being hit over the head with scripture that can mean different things to different people just doesn't work. I don't even understand most of it. Let's face it, it was transcribed by several different humans in a language that's not used anymore. It's like playing the telephone game.

When the Dead Sea Scrolls were being exhibited at the museum in my area, I went and saw them. It was fascinating! To actually see in person these writings, well, I can't put into words. The thing is is that apparently there were many scrolls, some of which were copied and hidden. Some were written with false info, so if found the writers wouldn't be persecuted. Which were the real scrolls? How many were there? How do they know that the scrolls they exhibited weren't the "fake" ones? Who knows.

I think Jesus was an awesome being. I take the basics of what he taught and go from there. I started my spiritual quest quite a few years ago. Everybody has their own time and way of doing it.

Unfortunately a lot of people feel that the only way they can get through this life is to have that belief system of fearing God. Everyone knows how daunting being responsible for ourselves can be.

Prejudice of people who are "different" is a fear. And I think that FEAR is the root of all evil. Fear takes on many faces; loss of control, extinction, change, not being enough, acceptance, etc.

Sometimes I believe some "fundamentalists" are really questioning their own belief system when they continue to try and change another person's belief system.

It's got to be exhausting to live in fear of going to hell all the time.

Ok, I'll shut up now.

Hep

May 9, 2009
3:54 pm
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bevdee when I first read your response it upset me. I had to leave the house and I ended up crying all the way back thinking of all the scathing things I wanted to say to you. I sat down and read the post once more and it did not hurt my feelings.

My point is that I am as equally offended by what the extremely judgemental Christians say and do as I am offended by what the extremely judgemental non-Christians do. Over on the support side we can no longer mention God because of some Bible Thumpers banging people over the head.

I brought up my damage and my issues and the fact that we all have issues or we wouldn't be on a site like this.

I was brought up in a Christian school where one of my biggest fears was that God was going to call me to be a missionary (since every time we turned around they had a missionary from somewhere talking to us). I now realize that my Christian calling is not to be a missionary. Hell, I am still trying to figure out what my secular calling is.

I do not hold myself up as Ms. Perfect Christian. I have plenty of sin in my life. I need to get the TREE out of my own eye before I can worry about the splinter in yours.

I want everyone to find their pathway to peace and happiness. For me that seems to be Christianity. If it isn't for someone else. Sorry. I have enough to worry about without worrying about you too. You're an adult. Make a decision and all my best to you.

There was also a time in my life that I would have worried myself sick trying to figure out what I could have possibly said that you would find offensive. Now? That is you not me.

This is me. I spent years in therapy. I bought and paid for this personality.

Bitsy

May 9, 2009
4:02 pm
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bevdee
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Bitsy,

I was responding to this -

" Bitsy
7-May-09

You know what? I have tried to present the "other" side of Christianity. That there is a loving God. What did I get? Redneck Communion: SPAM, CRACKERS, AND A BEER.

Feel free to carry on. At least I know I was a little more respectful of your beliefs than you were of mine. I don't know if I am more offended as a Christian or as a Southerner. Either way it is pretty insensitive.

I will go now and turn the other cheek. Tomorrow this may not bother me as much as it does tonight."

Although it was not specifically addressed to me, I was sure it was directed to me or about me, not other Xtians, since redneck communion came from me. That's why I posted what I did. Offense comes from perception.

May 9, 2009
4:39 pm
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There you go. Perception. I also participate on a Christian Blog where some of the people can be quite conscending about southerners. As I refer to myself as the Resident White Trash Southerner (see if I "own it" it takes the sting out of it) I think I was more offended as a southerner than I was as a Christian. The wafer and the wine are only symbolic of the body and blood of Christ. I truly do believe that the God I worship would accept crackers and beer if that were the only thing someone had to represent the Body and Blood and wished to be in Communion with the Saints. Truly the wafer is no more than a cracker and most churches now use grape juice not wine. I think God would prefer a strong ale? What do you think?

Bitsy

May 9, 2009
4:39 pm
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There you go. Perception. I also participate on a Christian Blog where some of the people can be quite conscending about southerners. As I refer to myself as the Resident White Trash Southerner (see if I "own it" it takes the sting out of it) I think I was more offended as a southerner than I was as a Christian. The wafer and the wine are only symbolic of the body and blood of Christ. I truly do believe that the God I worship would accept crackers and beer if that were the only thing someone had to represent the Body and Blood and wished to be in Communion with the Saints. Truly the wafer is no more than a cracker and most churches now use grape juice not wine. I think God would prefer a strong ale? What do you think?

Bitsy

May 9, 2009
4:49 pm
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bevdee
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Bitsy

What do I think? I probly don't have the same belief about "God" as you do. Not the all loving, casting-into-hell, populace flooding, Jesus'Daddy, benevolent father of all. (I don't know that that is your belief, though- I just used that as an example of a theistic higher power) My belief is that the higher power is a mostly untapped one within myself.

I think if you need a ritual and a symbol for it, it doesn't matter what it is. It could be nilla wafers and kool-aid. It could be racoon meat and possum blood, as long as you are focused on what that means to you.

Bitsy, you know I'm from the South don't you? I laugh at the customs and mores here because they are funny. Especially those of me and my family.

May 9, 2009
5:21 pm
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Well, then, we are prack tick lee related.

Bitsy

May 10, 2009
2:03 am
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glittered when he walked
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Happy Mother's Day to you moms out there.

May 10, 2009
3:44 am
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Hepburn,

I have thoughts about the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Nag Hamadi writings. They found them in a cave. Maybe cave persons wrote them?

You say - "Sometimes I believe some "fundamentalists" are really questioning their own belief system when they continue to try and change another person's belief system." Trying to confirm their own tenuous beliefs? If they can convince someone else that they are right, that will help confirm it in their mind? I always thought that's why people went to church - the meaning of fellowship.

And you say, "It's got to be exhausting to live in fear of going to hell all the time."

I've been thinking about the Xtians that damn and condemn others to hell for not believing, or conforming to the set of beliefs set forth in a particular book or society. Censorious as it might seem to gentler, less vindictive souls, it IS as Christ would do, if the bible is to be believed. Here's one example -
according to Luke, in warning his disciples the Son of God warns about the behaviour of the Pharisees, giving this example-

"Luke 11:42 But woe unto you, Pharisees! for ye tithe mint and rue and all manner of herbs, and pass over judgment and the love of God: these ought ye to have done, and not to leave the other undone."
saying a lot more, of course in the interim before this - warning in Luke 12:5 -"But I will forewarn you whom ye shall fear: Fear him, which after he hath killed hath power to cast into hell; yea, I say unto you, Fear him."

The Christian religion was formed mostly on the writings of the beliefs of Christ, so, from those who preached blistering words on this site, it seems as if y'all have adapted the teachings of Christ, if not necessarily the religion that formed from Christ's teachings.

If you ask yourself What Would Jesus Do? Wear the little bracelet to remind you? This is one of the things that Jesus did- admonished non-believers and those who would not conform and follow him- by warning them they would burn and blister in hell. It's pretty either-or.

May 10, 2009
11:59 am
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Hello,

Thank you, Bevdee, for your compliment and for posting on this thread.

And thank you, Glittered, for your Mother's Day wish. Here I am instead of in bed, being served breakfast and presented with diamond jewelry. Those commercials are not to be believed.

Craigco - you crack me up. Please, keep it coming.

Nice that Bitsy and Bev found common ground and worked towards an understanding. It CAN happen, can't it?

Doesn't seem you will get a dialogue with TB, SpecialK. And will you get a dialogue with OMW, Free? I don't know. OMW may not agree that there are any "problems" or "inconsistencies" in God's word.

Hepburn, yes, right on. I like your point. But fundamentalists wouldn't dare to be so flexible. Simply questioning is heresy.

As you wrote, Bevdee, it's either-or. I wonder if Bereft and TB think that Ma is not as devout as they are, not as likely to go to Heaven, because she doesn't continually warn us about Hell.

There are those fighting in Iraq, on both sides, who believe they're in a Holy War. Our taxes are funding a Holy War??

OMW, you mentioned a desire to work with people from different countries and cultures, as I do. I'm not a missionary. I could not hold a belief that would divide me from others - though it turns out, my belief in peace and acceptance does divide me from those who believe their ways are the only ways.

I couldn't do my work with an honest and open heart if I believed that my religious beliefs were not only good for me but best for others. That is something one learns from living in other countries, other ways work just as well, sometimes even better in some respects - politically, culturally, and so on.

I've written this before to OMW, Bereft, and TB, I get that you are crazy about Jesus and that you want to spread his word. However, it seems to me, when you continue to push it, despite a resounding "no thank you", that it is more about YOU and much less about our well-being.

TB, you've said before, "I will not be silenced!!". That's fantastic. It seems to me though, if you truly want to give Jesus' message, IN LOVE, we should see love rather than hostility.

My life is great, even without believing Jesus is the only way to Heaven. There is NOTHING that anyone can say that will convince me to adopt a fundamentalist religious belief, one that damns all infidels to Hell.

With love to all,

Mary

May 10, 2009
12:20 pm
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Hi free,

Thank you for your compliment. 🙂 Happy Mother's Day to you, by the way!

Let me tall you what I think. I don't think that there is a problem with Jesus's teachings per say, but there is a problem with how 'man' has interpreted Him and the Bible over the years. I beleive that there are so-called Christians out there who "in the name of God" do horrible things. People look at churches that are screwed up (some, not all), people look at other people and how 'they' interpret who Jesus Christ is, people look at the cults for an interpretation and automatically assume that God caused the problem. People look the the Roman catholic church and the Pope as the 'center' of Christianity, and I'm sorry, but the Catholic church does not portray Jesus Christ correctly. Jesus is the way to God, not a priest, then Mary, then Jesus, then God. So with all of this considered and more...because of people's own mind set of what they have learned from others, they determine that Christians (Christ in you) are all nuts or crazy. There are so-called Christians who don't have a clue and think that if they just go to church every Sunday and Wed. that that makes them a Christian. What upsets me the most? Is that people look to a group or a building, or an individual that has been a mentor in their lives, but then disappointed them, instead of a personal relationship. The personal relationship with Jesus Christ is what works, and should be sought after first. I amfar from perfect, totally far. I have much to learn and I gave my life to Jesus Christ over 30 years ago. Just 'believing' in something does not make a person that something. Sitting in a garage does not make a person a car, for instance. Sitting in a church and going through the motions is dead, and boring which is why some people say 'relgion never did anythign for me'...well no s**t!

Seeking Jesus in a personal way, finding out who He is and how HE makes a difference is what is important over all else.

When I read what is being posted here on this thread, I see anger from Mary, CraigCo, I see dissension, judgement, because some here would rather berate, and get angry rather than find the answers themselves. I mean at some point, you would think that it would end, rather than everyone trying to PROVE who THEY ARE, and what another person IS NOT. Jesus never did this.

Another thing? I don't see someone like bereft doing this or TerriB. They are not arguing. bereft is quoting Scripture and song, not arguing or condemning, yet it is being taken that way. YES Christians (Christ in you, a born again follower of Jesus) believes they are right, because the Person of Jesus Christ is right. There are still some things that seem impossible to me to do, and in my own power I simply cannot do. I have not healed people in my own strength, it is God, I don't have that power. I have not made $16,000 show up for my son's legal case out of nowhere, those were many prayers from family and friends, and I could go on and on.

My main point is this. God does not love anyone any less or more than anyone else. I believe that He created everyone. I believe that here on earth, there is division, evil, greed, etc. etc. and I don't believe that God causes that. There is also love and forgiveness, as you know. You also have an in depth knowing free about all of this. To look at some of the representatives of Christ, one will inevitably find fault or disappointment, but to look to the source, Jesus Christ, that is the smartest thing to do.

Glad you are back posting. I hope all has worked out for you, have not spoken to you in awhile, but remember our good converstions on AAC over the years. Hope you are happy, and doing well. 🙂

May 10, 2009
1:15 pm
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OMW,

You wrote:

"When I read what is being posted here on this thread, I see anger from Mary, CraigCo, I see dissension, judgement, because some here would rather berate, and get angry rather than find the answers themselves."

You just can't help yourself, can you?

I am not angry, and I DO have the answers for MYSELF. Once again, you imply that "the answer" is Jesus. Perhaps for YOU, but not for others.

And if you read the posts on this thread, those who don't believe that Jesus is the one and only way are the ones who are being BERATED.

You cannot see it. I realize this. You're so entrenched in your RIGHTNESS, so convinced that Jesus is the only way, that you're unable to see past it. That's OKAY - for YOU.

If there is frustration on my part, it's that you and Bereft and TB cannot accept that others are JUST FINE without believing what you do.

In your world, the only way is Jesus. Therefore, the only way to peace is if everyone believes in Jesus. That divides people. And of course you think that Bereft and TB are just fine because they believe what YOU do. But not everyone does.

Your way is not the only way. It's not the best way. It may be for you, but not for others.

However, you can't accept that.

I accept my way is not best for everyone, but it's best for me.

Whatever. We're just going in circles.

Mary

May 10, 2009
1:33 pm
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marypoppins
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Dear Virgin Mary,

Please give this message to Jesus to give to God. I'm appealing to you on Mother's Day. That virgin birth was really cool. Thank you for that. It must have been very difficult to watch your son die on the Christ. I know it was all for us.

As much as I'd like to believe I can get along with and accept others, I realize that it's always in my mind that I'm doing what is "right" and that others who don't believe as I do are "wrong". Not only are they wrong, they're going to Hell, as you well know.

It's not an easy path. Sometimes I think people don't accept God's word because they love sin too much, or they don't really understand how wonderful it can be to have a relationship with all of you. Certainly, my life is much better now that you're all a huge part of it. Wait, you're more than a part of it. You guys ARE my life.

Anyway, Mary, holy mother of Jesus, I just can't believe that others can truly be happy without you. Don't they realize they're going to Hell? Don't they realize that all other beliefs are inferior? I suppose people don't like hearing that. No one wants to be wrong, but they are, if they don't accept your son.

Please tell Jesus to tell God that I have tried to spread your word. Some people are just too stubborn and sin-loving to get it. They'll wish they had listened to me when they're burning in Hell. They'll wish they had chosen the Jesus door on the Let's Make a Religious Deal game show. Oh, yeah.

Mary Poppins

May 10, 2009
1:34 pm
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whoops, I wrote "your son die on the Christ" - I meant "your son, Christ, die on the cross"

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