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Old 03-14-2011, 07:57 PM   #46
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Who?



Us?
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Old 03-14-2011, 07:59 PM   #47
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Grace means that we don't have to live with the consequences of our actions -- but in order to receive it, we must believe it. (And believe that we need it.) For many, that's a bridge too far.
Nathan, do you think it might be possible that the grace of Jesus covers everyone unless they actively reject it, as opposed to covering only those that actively receive it? (No longer postluating my church's teaching now--this is just my own pet theory).
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:12 PM   #48
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Us?
And?
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:16 PM   #49
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And?


We are free to decide.
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:25 PM   #50
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Nathan, do you think it might be possible that the grace of Jesus covers everyone unless they actively reject it, as opposed to covering only those that actively receive it? (No longer postluating my church's teaching now--this is just my own pet theory).
It's an interesting question. I don't accept the notion that people are basically good -- I think there's too much brokenness in the world for that -- so I'm automatically of the belief that everyone needs a Savior. I also believe that the conscience is a hint of the Spirit, and that most people know at some level when they're acting out of accord with how they were intended. I suppose that action constitutes such a rejection, at some level, and I think we're all guilty of that...

I'd also hesitate a guess that more people would accept grace than they would accept the cost that comes with it (living a life surrendered to Jesus)...
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:40 PM   #51
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I think you'd make more progress conversing with an Autistic two year old than with Iron Horse
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:41 PM   #52
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Cut it out.
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:43 PM   #53
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Who?

Did I say us?


Did we hear the birds singing today?
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Old 03-14-2011, 08:52 PM   #54
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It's an interesting question. I don't accept the notion that people are basically good -- I think there's too much brokenness in the world for that -- so I'm automatically of the belief that everyone needs a Savior.
Agreed.

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I also believe that the conscience is a hint of the Spirit, and that most people know at some level when they're acting out of accord with how they were intended. I suppose that action constitutes such a rejection, at some level, and I think we're all guilty of that...
Agreed as well, though wouldn't it also follow that someone who following in accord with their conscience constitutes acceptance?

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I'd also hesitate a guess that more people would accept grace than they would accept the cost that comes with it (living a life surrendered to Jesus)...
As I've mentioned before, I'm not sure how useful it is for us to speculate on how many would or wouldn't accept grace.

I'm a teacher, so I guess there's something in me that has to believe that redemption is possible for everyone. If I started dwelling the statastics or the statistically liklihood I wouldn't be very effective in my job. Sure, you know that the reality is that you can't save them all but that's not what you focus on.

Thinking back to Johnny's earlier question about the broad and narrow way, I'd see that quote from Jesus as more illustrative of the idea that "doing what every one else is doing" is not a good guide to salvation. And that's really a life principle that extends beyond religion. For example, in order to achieve economic succes beyond what most people achieve, you'll have to do what "most people" aren't doing. Looking to what the crowd is doing is not the way one achieves succes, of any kind.
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:00 PM   #55
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I'm a teacher, so I guess there's something in me that has to believe that redemption is possible for everyone.
Absolutely agree here.

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If I started dwelling the statastics or the statistically liklihood I wouldn't be very effective in my job. Sure, you know that the reality is that you can't save them all but that's not what you focus on.
To go back to the therapy notion, I don't think you can help people who don't want to be helped, or who don't admit they have a problem. I suppose that's why Jesus avoided the self-righteous who thought they had it figured out; they had no need for Him.

Having just watched Tom Shadyac's new documentary I AM, where he talks about all the things that are killing our souls (consumerism, competition, greed, etc), and how tuned out we are to it all, I think it's safe to say that few of us really know what's good for us. The problem, however, is that we're all being told we're all right, when the reality is far different...
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Old 03-14-2011, 09:19 PM   #56
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To go back to the therapy notion, I don't think you can help people who don't want to be helped, or who don't admit they have a problem. ...
And i think that could sum up what we have going on in here.

Those of us who use science, logic, common sense, and whatever else is used to measure and test whats in the real world will never convince a believer that God/Heaven/Hell/etc does NOT exist.

You really just can't change someone's belief system, because those systems are set up to always change to fit what mood or situation they're in.

Where I would believe in all of the heaven/hell talk if there was something more than just TALK. I am not going to spend one second of my life worrying about a after life of bliss or sorrow until I see one shred of evidence that it exists. That means it's an actual destination, someone has been there, it's proven to be real by any of our senses, aka a real place.

Otherwise it's all people's opinions. And anyone can have an opinion, you can't have your own facts. It either is or isn't, what you make of it is where the grey area exists.

Heaven sounds like a great place from descriptions (though an eternity is too long for me, hopefully there's a lot to do) if it were to be true. As i said before, I can't just pretend in something on blind faith. Tried that with Santa, and that turned out to be a disappointment.

speaking of that, funny how we can lie to kids about a man who travels the world on flying raindeer in one night, delivering gifts to good boys and girls until they get older and we admit it was just a story to make you behave.

Yet we continue to lie about a creator somewhere we can't see who created everything, and may or may not be invovled with everything, and if we're good and follow his 10 laws, we'll meet up with our loved ones in the next life.

Makes perfect sense to me.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:29 PM   #57
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I think we just need to wake up to reality.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:34 PM   #58
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A free man thinks of death least of all things; and his wisdom is a meditation not of death but of life - Spinoza

This thread doesn't interest me.
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Old 03-14-2011, 10:46 PM   #59
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A free man thinks of death least of all things; and his wisdom is a meditation not of death but of life - Spinoza
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Old 03-14-2011, 11:01 PM   #60
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Here's something I read last night, thoughts:

Quote:
Tony M Probable NDE

EXPERIENCE DESCRIPTION:

The first instant (time did not exist from this point, so it may be hard to describe what happened), I fell into a deep, dark pit that seemed infinite in size. I was perplexed when this happened, and looked around to try to find out where I was. As I looked down, I couldn't see my body anymore. I was simply a form of consciousness with my ego intact. I did not have to breathe, nor did I have any difficulty thinking, as though I was experiencing some sort of "super consciousness". I eventually landed with a thud which caused an excruciating pain to pass through my body. This void was the darkest black that I have ever seen in my life. It's as if there was no light whatsoever in this dimension. Even if a light were to shine in this void, the darkness would have completely devoured it. I could not see anything, but the sounds that I heard were absolutely horrendous. I could here what seemed like trillions of people screaming and crying in pain. Even though there were trillions of voices, I could distinguish all of the voices separately in some sort of superimposed, horrendous screech. I wasn't scared, I was absolutely livid. I knew that this was where my fate rested, in this deep dark pit.

Suddenly, in the twinkling of an eye, 150 foot flames manifested all around me. This roaring inferno seemed to be 1, 000, 000 times hotter and more intense than the sun. The colors were unlike any I've ever seen in my lifetime. The reds, oranges, yellows and other indescribable colors were so intense that I had trouble recognizing. I tried frantically to escape this fiery pit, but each time I tried to climb the wall, I slipped and landed back at the bottom of the pit. It was as if the "walls" (boundaries more so than walls, very difficult to explain) were made of some sort of supernatural ice with no friction whatsoever. Surprisingly, I did not feel the flames of this hellish pit, but was still horrified as I could hear the many screams of the innumerable souls condemned to this seemingly eternal fate. I could see nothing but flames surrounding me. I cried out in horror as the scene switched to a disturbingly hideous and disgusting demon who towered over me, quite similar to a skyscraper next to a human being. I got the impression that this being was made out of pure hate and terror. It struck a terror so deep within me, that I still find it absolutely impossible to describe 15 years later. It seemed like this being was about to propel my very soul in to oblivion. Even though I realized that I was dead, I felt as though this being could destroy me in yet again in a horrendously tragic way, forever.

After this, I ended up in the hospital feeling totally relieved and inspired to change my life for the better. I told my nurse about the incident and her eyes widened. She was in complete disbelief, and the look on her face told me that perhaps she had heard this kind of story before.

Was the kind of experience difficult to express in words? Yes This NDE was in another dimension where time ceased to exist and space seemed to follow some sort of supernatural law of physics. Even this sentence is peanuts compared to what the experience was actually like. Although I remember the experience like it happened yesterday, I am still unable to find the words to accurately describe it.

At the time of this experience, was there an associated life threatening event? Yes I went under the knife for surgery on my bowel. I was having problems with my bowel, so the surgeons decided to remove one part of the organ. The surgeons sewed up the incision point, and when I awoke they said I that the operation was a complete success. They wanted to keep me in the hospital for 72 hours to assess my condition before releasing me, but I started to feel a sharp pain in the area where my bowel is. I remember telling the nurse this, and then everything faded to black. The last thing I remember was hearing the alarm in my room. At this point, according to the doctors, I slipped into a deep coma due to internal bleeding. The doctors told my sister that I was not going to make it.

At what time during the experience were you at your highest level of consciousness and alertness? When I first landed in the pit, hearing the countless, disturbing high-pitched screams and cries for help.

How did your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience compare to your normal every day consciousness and alertness? More consciousness and alertness than normal

If your highest level of consciousness and alertness during the experience was different from your normal every day consciousness and alertness, please explain: When I first landed in the pit, hearing the countless, disturbing high-pitched screams and cries for help.

Did your vision differ in any way from your normal, everyday vision (in any aspect, such as clarity, field of vision, colors, brightness, depth perception degree of solidness/transparency of objects, etc.)? Yes The colors that I had experienced were so vivid, so sharp, so colorful that I was in absolute awe despite being trapped in a hellish void.

Did your hearing differ in any way from your normal, everyday hearing (in any aspect, such as clarity, ability to recognize source of sound, pitch, loudness, etc.)?
Yes I could hear trillions and trillions of other beings screaming their heads off, but each voice was heard separately in a superimposed fashion.

Did you experience a separation of your consciousness from your body? Yes

What emotions did you feel during the experience? Indescribable fear, terror, lividness, anxiety, anxiousness, curiosity,

Did you pass into or through a tunnel or enclosure? Yes It was more like a very dark cave, which lead to my rapid descent into the pit.

Did you see a light? Yes The flames emitted a strange light, not dissimilar to the light the sun gives off at close range.

Did you meet or see any other beings?
Yes I saw a demon made of terror, and heard many cries of condemned souls. I recognized many screams in the fire, although I'm not sure how or why. I did not recognize the demon, although he was similar to a bear. I am now absolutely horrified of bears and refuse to go camping anywhere. No knowledge was communicated, except for the fact that the burning people were definitely horrified and in extreme pain.

Did you experience a review of past events in your life? No

Did you observe or hear anything regarding people or events during your experience that could be verified later? No

Did you see or visit any beautiful or otherwise distinctive locations, levels or dimensions? No

Did you have any sense of altered space or time? Yes No sense of time, altered and indescribable laws of physics in the "space" that I found myself trapped in.

Did you have a sense of knowing special knowledge, universal order and/or purpose? No

Did you reach a boundary or limiting physical structure
? Yes The walls of the cave, made with "frictionless ice". I knew that if I'd managed to climb out, I'd have been safe.

Did you become aware of future events? No

Did you have any psychic, paranormal or other special gifts following the experience you did not have prior to the experience? Yes Increased intuition. I know when people are lying to me, and I have increased sensitivity to people's emotions.

Have you shared this experience with others? Yes Immediately after the experience. Total shock and disbelief. Unsure how the NDE influenced the nurse / doctors.

Did you have any knowledge of near death experience (NDE) prior to your experience? No

How did you view the reality of your experience shortly (days to weeks) after it happened: Experience was definitely real Experience was the most real experience I have ever witnessed. Everything about it was totally clear, real and astonishingly life like. Definitely not a dream or hallucination.

Were there one or several parts of the experience especially meaningful or significant to you? Finding myself in a huge, raging inferno left me in disbelief. It has lead me to ponder my existence and the truth about reality. This has become the reason for my lifestyle change.

How do you currently view the reality of your experience: Experience was definitely real Same as above.

Have your relationships changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes Closer to my kids, realize the importance of relationships and the unimportance of material values. Much kinder to people, and as a result I have more friends.

Have your religious beliefs/practices changed specifically as a result of your experience? Yes Stronger belief in the God of the universe. I try to pray daily, and go to church as often as possible. I tithe much more frequently, and share my experience with others wherever I see fit to do so.

Following the experience, have you had any other events in your life, medications or substances which reproduced any part of the experience? No

Is there anything else you would like to add concerning the experience? My advice to you if you're reading this is to take it seriously. This experience, no matter how seemingly absurd or hallucinatory, was absolutely real to me. It felt more real than waking reality. Although it has changed my life for the better, I don't wish this near death experience on anyone. Please read the stories on this website, and learn from the mistakes of others. To the webmaster: Thank you for creating this great website! NDERF has opened up my mind to the seemingly infinite possibilities of God and creation. I look forward to sharing this site with friends and family.

Did the questions asked and information you provided so far accurately and comprehensively describe your experience? Yes Great set of questions; very relevant and easy to answer.

Are there any other questions we could ask to help you communicate your experience? Perhaps you could add a section where the survey asks what type of philosophies or ideologies we have read about / heard of prior to the experience.
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