Why I lost faith

Scripture
Scripture

November 26th, 2013, 11:40 pm #41

[color=#0000FF" size="4" face="times]I think that the first mention of "chemotherapy" in this thread was in relation to a discussion of "faith" (or the lack of it) in conjunction with "healing." "Miracles 'still' happen today!" -- a misleading declaration and popularization by today's televangelists and "miracle workers." As if to say that today's "miraculous" healings are a continuation of and are no different from the miracles done during the time of Christ and the apostles.

(The author of this thread agrees with the known assertion about chemo treatment and the doctors, if they themselves were to face similar medical issues. The mention of "chemo" was only an example or a miniscule part of the overall discussion of faith-related matters contained in both the Old and New Testaments. But Dr. Bill felt the need to dwell on this particular medical subject [of all things] and to [perhaps unintentionally] divert [cf. post on November 25 2013, 7:28 AM]. Now we see what's happened.)

Let's return to the discussion of: "Why I lost faith." This is not a medical forum.

My contention is that the Bible is comprised of segments that deal with: the law, the psalms, the prophets, history (of BOTH good and evil occurrences), narratives of both good and evil characters, doctrine, etc. -- all in there for a reason.[/color]
Yes, I've seen the same data from non-alternative sites.

Doctors find themselves in the same position, often, as preachers and Bible Scholars.

That is, their positions are related to practice in the profession.

Strangely enough, data show that the average atheist actually knows more Bible than the average Christian.

(There's a lot of work to do.)
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

November 26th, 2013, 11:53 pm #42

Deism was discredit because it gave no hope that God would ever intervene in a person's life. They believed that God created the world like a clock, and just went off and left it. It was up to man to solve his own problems, but God had placed His laws in motion, and man had to use rationale to solve his own problems.

Progressives believe that God wound up the clock but it ran down and simply was not keeping time with the changed culture (that culture: it is always a changing on us). Therefore, a "spirit" spoke to them and told them that they needed to keep time by Boulder: a standard running much faster than the God of the olden Bible could have even imagined.

Now, having said that, what are your opinions of the Absentee Landlord?
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Scripture
Scripture

November 27th, 2013, 12:23 am #43

That would be the belief of the Positivist, that today's humanity knows more than the Deist. Let's say that God did put things in working order and then left for vacation--which I reject--then with today's arrogance the Modernists would say that the old laws and rules no longer work in today's technological society.

The great mistake of the Modernist is similar to the Positivist, in that they both deny that "anything older is new again."

As sure as the Positivist, the Modernist, and the Futurist ignores the past, he is likely to leave out "hope." There is no pattern.

The teenage suicide rate could be related to hopelessness (despair) in that by the time they are graduated from high school, they have been bombarded with every kind of secularism. Many have no appreciation for the accomplishments of the past, and believe that today's generation are going to escape the mistakes of previous generations.

With the ascendance of information technology, cyber systems, and instant news; the past is a forgotten child. With no knowledge of the past they are much more likely to descend to the depths of hopelessness.

We can go further to link this false faith in today's new generation to the climate of constant and chronic change in some church organizations and worship. This is evident when a "worship leader" gets up to say "We're going to do things a little differently today."

Tell me, how can we improve on the Lord's Supper, from the bread and the cup? We can mangle that Communion by merging the bread with the cup (for example, one prayer) but by doing so we ignore the historical sacrifice separating doctrine (bread) from fruit of the vine (sacrifice). Jesus set an example, by taking the bread and the cup and blessing them separately. However, one may say, that this is not a "pattern." For those rejecting patternism, I want to ask one question, "Why is it, that Jesus, each time the Gospels take a meal, that he blesses it." In other words, the gospel writers had a pattern. Paul said that all things are good to eat (no forbidden foods) if they be received with thanksgiving and prayer. Here is another statement of a pattern.

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Confused
Confused

November 27th, 2013, 6:04 am #44

My thoughts on cancer and faith is if you believe in God having total control, why not only pray and let whatever happens, happen. Why turn to science then? If God can guide a surgeons hand, could he not boost one's immune system to kill the cancer without medical treatment, or alternative medicine.

Deism died out because there is not a church of a deist. It is not a thought one feels the need to meet on Sunday weekly to agree that there is a God that set things in motion. Let me state this, just because a belief in God or Jesus makes you feel fuzzy inside, or gives you a comforting thing to tell your child does not make it true. I only call my self a deist because I am agnostic on Jesus being God and I think the Old Testament that gives the reason for Jesus a fable. I do believe that something created all this and I lean toward God and Jesus in the hopes that the Bible is not. God's message to us without error , but or book of errors that explain the true concept of God the best a man can. Even if man had to embellish the whole thing. What the OT says, vs Jesus in Gospel, vs Paul are all so different.

I have been reading some other threads on here and I think you have a valid point for being upset with what happened to Madison CoC. I knew a few of the elders and I used to know Jason Shep years ago. None of them are bad people and the comments made about Jason's beliefs are the reason that I feel fine as a spectator. Ira North is dead. Steve Flatt used Madison as a stepping stone, and everything since seems to be a downward spiral. None of that influences my beliefs, I would still be confused just off the Bible. Then add in all the different religions and denominations that all know the only true God and way to worship. Take the next step, and even when you find a denomination, it might splinter another hundred time due to one verse. Outside of that you have science teaching billions of years, evolution, Pangea, etc. that all go against all the religions. There is a Creation Musem that displays children riding on dinosaurs which is a sad display of what faith has come to.

Church is a business. To survive it must grow. The elders are treating it as such. It seems they are attempting to do anything to attract more people which in turn give more money, which makes a larger building which gives them more power or ego. A preacher is only a paid messenger or parrot. If numbers go down, like any business he gets replaced. The elders want to be relevant in the religious world again like they were back when they did the Sunday night TV show back in the day. It probably gets under their skin that Madison is not a mega church like Rick Warren's.

Just to let you know, this site popped up second on Google when I was looking for Madison's website to possibly see about visiting. I have no desire to go now. Not because of this forum, just that this forum confirmed why I mentally checked out of the CoC. This is a better way for me to communicate than a face to face class. I would just sit in a class and stare at the wall the entire time.



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Scripture
Scripture

November 27th, 2013, 1:51 pm #45

Confused said "I do believe that something created all this and I lean toward God and Jesus in the hopes that the Bible is not God's message to us without error, but or book of errors that explain the true concept of God the best a man can." There is the view that the Bible "contains" the Word of God, but is not perfect in its details, but we do not endorse that. Belief in inerrancy and belief in God or Christ are not mutually inclusive, and some have stated their creed that the Bible is perfect in its original writing, or in the earliest manuscripts. Many who doubt the Bible here or there are also God-Believers.

I think the basic question you have to answer is what vehicle are we going to teach Biblical morality if we don't have the church? Rejection of the church is the rejection of the house that holds the moral teachings of the ages--teachings that have stood the test of time. I do think that one has to rightly divide the Word of God (Bible) in order to understand it, for sure. The Old Testament is filled with accounts of the Israelites slaying an entire village, men, women, and children. But sometimes the writer does not endorse the killing, but just describes it. Other times he endorses the killings.

These stumbling blocks from the Hebrew scriptures are undone or erased in the New Covenant, where the teaching is to love God and neighbor, and to turn the other cheek. I read that turning the other cheek does not include completely making oneself vulnerable without defense, but to not return violence for violence, or offense for offense.

You hit the nail on the head in paragraph 4. The treatment of the MCOC as a business is the greatest error. True leaders must be led by an appreciation for the truth of God, and how to transform lives. This must be done not as an imitation of what works in California, but what works in Madison. It must take into account the local skills and abilities. To place the High Growth Church Model from one of the most mixed up states in the union (California) is not the way to grow the church in Madison. That's being proved daily.

Your comment concerning Jason is apt, and I think this is true for the last preacher as well. The wellspring of church growth has to come from the pulpit [not from the singing], and Jason as well as Phil never were able to get their own vision onto the Madison scene, since they just "canned" the ideas from California. There are hundreds of persons at Madison that are not wanting to import ideas foreign to their religious past, and it will not work. So the importation leads to degradation and destruction. Phil was prompted to present Rick Warrens' theology, and Jason is presenting Judah Smith's can of worms. Where is the real "Phil Barnes?" Who is the real "Jason?" Those preachers who take the pulpit at Madison are under the finger of the "spiritual leaders", and it's not clear who that is, but these preachers may never "come into their own" since they are presented with an imported program, but there is no real "Phil" or "Jason."

The real irony is that after Phil had presented the program of the "spiritual leaders," he failed to get traction, and either labeled himself as falling short, or was so labeled. So he went on to greener pastures in Florida. Perhaps there, they will allow him to study the scriptures and get a clear definition of himself and his role.

In your first paragraph, you said "My thoughts on cancer and faith is if you believe in God having total control, why not only pray and let whatever happens, happen. Why turn to science then? If God can guide a surgeons hand, could he not boost one's immune system to kill the cancer without medical treatment, or alternative medicine." We are workman together with God, not that God will determine all unilaterally, but that we work with Him to accomplish His will. The importance of faith is critical here, since many doctors assume that faith will strengthen the human body. [Here I go being an "oncologist."] The linkage between the mind and the body is still up for discussion, and there are new avenues of academia that link the mind with the body. After all, Jesus said "Be made whole." "Whole" indicating the interaction of mind and body, or faith and body.


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Bill
Bill

November 27th, 2013, 6:41 pm #46

Scripture, since we're talking about faith, perhaps you would give us your views on the "selective faith" of some Christians. For example, some Christians readily accept the miraculous, biblical accounts of the burning bush, the Israelites' crossing the Red Sea, Jesus' birth, and His ascension into heaven. Yet those same Christians balk at or flatly deny other passages, for example, where Jesus said that He "came down from heaven" and would "ascend up where He was before" (meaning back into heaven where He originally came). In other words, some Christians have selective faith; they selectively accept in the Bible what makes sense to them and deny what the Bible says about other issues. Any thoughts about why some Christians are so selective?
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Joined: July 29th, 2010, 2:32 pm

November 27th, 2013, 7:13 pm #47

When God SENDS something from heaven that does not mean that the SENT existed in the SPIRIT World which has NO PERSONS OR PEOPLE. It is idolatry to think of God existing the the form of a man.

When God moved Jesus to the THRONE (not a place but an office) He is still called THE MAN JESUS CHRIST and God MADE Jesus of Nazareth TO BE both lord and Christ.

God sent ALL spirits from heaven but we are not part of a TRINITY which is the only object of trying to make Jesus of Nazareth an ETERNAL member of the godhead. God, FROM HEAVEN, sent Jesus as the SEED (sperm) of Abraham which would be just silly if He sent Jesus from Heaven. Jesus was in the DNA of Abraham before He was born and HEAVEN is up in the air or CLOUDS and that is where they say Jesus go: they assuredly could not see Jesus enter into the Spiritual Dimension.

The Spirit OF Christ warns about the Lying Pen of the Scribes: we are not called to pass judgment because it is LAWFUL for God to use PARABLES: Jesus said that He did just that to KEEP those OF THE WORLD from understanding: it worked pretty well, huh?
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Scripture
Scripture

November 27th, 2013, 8:16 pm #48

Scripture, since we're talking about faith, perhaps you would give us your views on the "selective faith" of some Christians. For example, some Christians readily accept the miraculous, biblical accounts of the burning bush, the Israelites' crossing the Red Sea, Jesus' birth, and His ascension into heaven. Yet those same Christians balk at or flatly deny other passages, for example, where Jesus said that He "came down from heaven" and would "ascend up where He was before" (meaning back into heaven where He originally came). In other words, some Christians have selective faith; they selectively accept in the Bible what makes sense to them and deny what the Bible says about other issues. Any thoughts about why some Christians are so selective?
I can't add much to this discussion, since it has been going on for years. The Nicene people also used this belief as a wedge issue against those who disagreed.

Selectivity is common in belief and practice. For example, why not the Holy Kiss, and Footwashing, but Singing? We need to reason from details of scripture to conclusions. Conclusions should not trump over detail, since detail must support conclusions.

Even as the Golden Calf was raised in the Wilderness, so our singular beliefs can be exalted above the clear evidence of the Word. It is hard to overturn our conclusions, at least until an overwhelming number of details do not fit the conclusions.

"Selective literalism" refers to taking some passages literally, while passages we don't agree with are taken figuratively. A perfect example is the nature of the kingdom. When Jesus said that the twelve apostles would sit on thrones judging the nation of Israel, amillenial people take that figuratively. Millenialists take it literally.

If the overriding conviction is that there are no human personalities in heaven, then it would follow that there is a difference between the earthly Jesus and the eternal Word. To convince someone that there are human personalities in heaven would require a change in the stance concerning the Godhood, to believe that there are human persons in the Godhead. In other words, if you say that the Godhead is not human, then there would be no humans in that Godhead. I think that some think to recognize the earthly Jesus as the pre-existing Word, makes the Godhead human, and might lead to Trinitarianism. Muslims make that charge, that Christianity is not monotheistic. Some professing Christians are Unitarians, some Ditarians, and other Trinitarians. Philip's suggestion "If you believe with all you heart you may," would be the sufficient requirement to being a Christian, and "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." See Acts 8:37. Our restoration tradition would lead us to leave this topic to individual conviction--i.e. the belief about the nature of the Christ.

1 Corinthians 15 is helpful in this regard, since Jesus is referred to as the "first fruits"--the first after which many may follow. Paul continues to say in 1 Corinthians 15:35-41. The "body" that we are given is not the same flesh as we have on earth. The glory of the heavenly bodies is greater than the glory of earthly bodies. The heavenly glory (i.e. the stars) are apparently looked at by Paul as above the glory of earthly bodies (i.e. the earth, and sun).

Paul goes on to say that "it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body." It may be critical here that Paul refers to a "spiritual BODY," and this is what moderns would call an oxymoron, or an irony. How can there be a "spiritual body?"
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Bill
Bill

November 27th, 2013, 9:14 pm #49

When God SENDS something from heaven that does not mean that the SENT existed in the SPIRIT World which has NO PERSONS OR PEOPLE. It is idolatry to think of God existing the the form of a man.

When God moved Jesus to the THRONE (not a place but an office) He is still called THE MAN JESUS CHRIST and God MADE Jesus of Nazareth TO BE both lord and Christ.

God sent ALL spirits from heaven but we are not part of a TRINITY which is the only object of trying to make Jesus of Nazareth an ETERNAL member of the godhead. God, FROM HEAVEN, sent Jesus as the SEED (sperm) of Abraham which would be just silly if He sent Jesus from Heaven. Jesus was in the DNA of Abraham before He was born and HEAVEN is up in the air or CLOUDS and that is where they say Jesus go: they assuredly could not see Jesus enter into the Spiritual Dimension.

The Spirit OF Christ warns about the Lying Pen of the Scribes: we are not called to pass judgment because it is LAWFUL for God to use PARABLES: Jesus said that He did just that to KEEP those OF THE WORLD from understanding: it worked pretty well, huh?
Ken wrote: "It is idolatry to think of God existing [in] the form of a man." Apparently the Scriptures do not think it is idolatry for God to exist as a man:

"And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins. Now all this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying, Behold, a virgin shall be with child, and shall bring forth a son, and they shall call his name Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us." (Matt. 1:21-23 KJV).

Since Jesus is Emmanuel, or God with us, then God as Jesus dwelt in the form of a man among men.
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Bill
Bill

November 27th, 2013, 9:38 pm #50

I can't add much to this discussion, since it has been going on for years. The Nicene people also used this belief as a wedge issue against those who disagreed.

Selectivity is common in belief and practice. For example, why not the Holy Kiss, and Footwashing, but Singing? We need to reason from details of scripture to conclusions. Conclusions should not trump over detail, since detail must support conclusions.

Even as the Golden Calf was raised in the Wilderness, so our singular beliefs can be exalted above the clear evidence of the Word. It is hard to overturn our conclusions, at least until an overwhelming number of details do not fit the conclusions.

"Selective literalism" refers to taking some passages literally, while passages we don't agree with are taken figuratively. A perfect example is the nature of the kingdom. When Jesus said that the twelve apostles would sit on thrones judging the nation of Israel, amillenial people take that figuratively. Millenialists take it literally.

If the overriding conviction is that there are no human personalities in heaven, then it would follow that there is a difference between the earthly Jesus and the eternal Word. To convince someone that there are human personalities in heaven would require a change in the stance concerning the Godhood, to believe that there are human persons in the Godhead. In other words, if you say that the Godhead is not human, then there would be no humans in that Godhead. I think that some think to recognize the earthly Jesus as the pre-existing Word, makes the Godhead human, and might lead to Trinitarianism. Muslims make that charge, that Christianity is not monotheistic. Some professing Christians are Unitarians, some Ditarians, and other Trinitarians. Philip's suggestion "If you believe with all you heart you may," would be the sufficient requirement to being a Christian, and "I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God." See Acts 8:37. Our restoration tradition would lead us to leave this topic to individual conviction--i.e. the belief about the nature of the Christ.

1 Corinthians 15 is helpful in this regard, since Jesus is referred to as the "first fruits"--the first after which many may follow. Paul continues to say in 1 Corinthians 15:35-41. The "body" that we are given is not the same flesh as we have on earth. The glory of the heavenly bodies is greater than the glory of earthly bodies. The heavenly glory (i.e. the stars) are apparently looked at by Paul as above the glory of earthly bodies (i.e. the earth, and sun).

Paul goes on to say that "it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body." It may be critical here that Paul refers to a "spiritual BODY," and this is what moderns would call an oxymoron, or an irony. How can there be a "spiritual body?"
When Jesus said He "came down from heaven" and would "ascend up where He had been before," those with selective faith would say Jesus was just speaking "figuratively," that He didn't literally come down as He and the Scriptures said He did, and He literally didn't ascend as He said He would as and the Scriptures said He did.

It sounds like those Christians with selective faith are selectively atheistic at heart. They're trying to juggle the "best" of Christianity and atheism. If we cannot serve God and mammon, which are two opposite ends of the spectrum, then we certainly cannot hold Christian beliefs and atheistic beliefs at the same time, for they are also at opposite ends of the spectrum.
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