Can God be "the bigger person" when it comes to non-believers? - U2 Feedback

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Old 11-18-2004, 09:31 AM   #1
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Can God be "the bigger person" when it comes to non-believers?

Yes, it's time for one of my semi-annual worries about my eternal soul, but this time I think I have a question that hasn't been asked, and if it has, it's been awhile.....

The other day I was watching ER. In it, there was a guy who was dying (played by Ray Liotta), and Dr. Kovach (sp?) was talking to him. The guy said "I have never been a believer, and I guess that's going to bite me in the ass now, huh?" to which the Dr. replied, "I think God will get over it."

I felt an enormous amount of relief. It then occurred to me, that perhaps he's right and rather than being petty and saying "you didn't believe so nya nya you're going to hell", maybe God, who is supposed to be all knowing about what goes on in people's hearts, would understand why certain people have trouble believing (either due to their upbringing, or things that have happened in their lives), and would be the "bigger person" and forgive this non/reluctant believer, welcoming him/her to Heaven.

Discuss.
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:33 AM   #2
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I think you're right. God knows the deepest thoughts in our minds and can see into our hearts and souls.
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:45 AM   #3
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but as a non-believer, I dont really care that God can be 'bigger'.
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:49 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally posted by U2democrat
I think you're right. God knows the deepest thoughts in our minds and can see into our hearts and souls.
This is correct. Our faith is a matter between our own heart and God Himself. It is not necessarily a matter of what we say or do.

I have a friend who has an interesting ministry. When telemarketers call his home, he tells them "I will listen to your sales pitch if you can answer one question: What is the only sin that will send you to hell?"

This leads to interesting discussions.

Oh, and the answer to the question is: Rejection of Jesus Christ.

John 14:6

Jesus Himself set a very simple standard. No other sin keeps you from Him. No other sin is unforgiveable.
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Old 11-18-2004, 09:57 AM   #5
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yes you're absolutely right... you know, everybody has "seasons of smaller faith" (i don't know a better name for this)
and God is so wonderful -- he forgives you all your sins o you can come back to Him.
and also i think that people who came to God after longer time will get much more love... cause God gives you just the right amount of love (that you need).

sorry for my english
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Old 11-18-2004, 10:16 AM   #6
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it's these kind of sentimental thoughts about God -- as some kind of old man with a beard looking over my shoulder and whispering into my left ear and granting me my wishes when i pray -- that keep many of us (or at least me) from wanting to be called a "believer."

i won't get into my personal notions of God, but let's say that i choose to have faith, and the biggest obstacles i find to overcome are precisely these sentimental notions.

just my $.02. not to degrade what anybody else things, just to say that i don't understand these highly humanized ideas of something supposed to be infinite.
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Old 11-18-2004, 10:55 AM   #7
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So NBC, you are saying that nothing is worse than non-belief, regardless of how you may have come to that decision (or indecision as in my case).

So to use another example, what do you think will happen to Bono's dad, who was a huge believer for ages, and apparently lost his faith. Is he now sitting in hell, never to be reunited with his wife and sons despite his prior life of belief and any other good things he may have done on earth? If so, I think that's totally crappy and God should be ashamed of himself.
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Old 11-18-2004, 10:57 AM   #8
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If you refer to the man who was next to Jesus on the cross who lived a life of sin, and was an unbeliever... He asked Jesus to remember him in his kingdom on the last day of his life, and Jesus said that he will be in paradise with him.
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Old 11-18-2004, 10:58 AM   #9
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:04 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Macfistowannabe
If you refer to the man who was next to Jesus on the cross who lived a life of sin, and was an unbeliever... He asked Jesus to remember him in his kingdom on the last day of his life, and Jesus said that he will be in paradise with him.
He lived the life of an unbeliever and was guilty of some crime to result in crucifixtion.

He did, in that last moment, find faith in Jesus.

Luke 23:39-43

One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: "Aren't you the Christ? Save yourself and us!"

But the other criminal rebuked him. "Don't you fear God," he said, "since you are under the same sentence?

We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong."

Then he said, "Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom."

Jesus answered him, "I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise."
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:29 AM   #11
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You don't lose God's gift to you. Once you accept him he won't turn back his promise from you.

God is not a man so as to lie,
God is no man so as to regret anything he does.

Once you've accepted Jesus as your saviour he won't leave you behind.
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:50 AM   #12
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Well it's easy for him to believe in Jesus at the last minute, he was right there!
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:51 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by BrownEyedBoy
You don't lose God's gift to you. Once you accept him he won't turn back his promise from you.
Yes so everyone keeps saying but what if you accept and THEN lose your faith again?
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:54 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mrs. Edge
So NBC, you are saying that nothing is worse than non-belief, regardless of how you may have come to that decision (or indecision as in my case).

So to use another example, what do you think will happen to Bono's dad, who was a huge believer for ages, and apparently lost his faith. Is he now sitting in hell, never to be reunited with his wife and sons despite his prior life of belief and any other good things he may have done on earth? If so, I think that's totally crappy and God should be ashamed of himself.
We all go through periods when we doubt, or appear to fall away from the faith. God does not require a "maintenance level" of behavior or belief. If one truly believes (which only God truly knows), then that person is

As was mentioned above, once you receive God's grace, you can't lose it.

Bono and his father will be reunited in heaven.
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Old 11-18-2004, 11:56 AM   #15
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Originally posted by Mrs. Edge
Well it's easy for him to believe in Jesus at the last minute, he was right there!
Not really. There were plenty of people who witnessed miracles, spoke with Jesus, etc., and did not believe.
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