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Old 12-16-2006, 10:56 AM   #136
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Originally posted by Dreadsox


Jesus died like many other champions of the excluded, the marginalized, the downtrodden.

I can think of quite a few.

Why did they have to die?

This is about forgiveness...And the billions who do the will of the father by caring for the poor, feeding them, clothing them be they muslim, hindu, ect....because it was the RIGHT thing to do...

Why would God create them to damn them to hell? Just to stand before him and say I accept Christ? Sorry, the verse you quoted indeed points out that just accepting Christ and walking around town in his name is not enough.
the Will of the Father is to accept His Son into our hearts...to paraphrase, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no one gets to the Father except through me"
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Old 12-16-2006, 11:49 AM   #137
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Originally posted by nightninja56


the Will of the Father is to accept His Son into our hearts...to paraphrase, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no one gets to the Father except through me"
We have discussed this verse....

And I do not believe it means an exclusive club.

You can still get to the Father through Christ if you are not a Christian.

thank goodness Grace trumps Christian Dogma.
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Old 12-16-2006, 03:50 PM   #138
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Originally posted by nightninja56


the Will of the Father is to accept His Son into our hearts...to paraphrase, "I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, no one gets to the Father except through me"
Have you missed like half this thread?

We've discussed this, can you answer the questions that have been asked?
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Old 12-16-2006, 08:29 PM   #139
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you would.

why don't you just plant a Union Jack in the ground and claim the land for the Queen while you're at it?

what we're getting at is a lack of respect for other faiths and the lack of self-awareness -- perhaps there are people out there who are every bit as strong in their religion as you are, and for perfectly valid reasons, they view your religion as invalid as you view theirs.

just who are you to tell them otherwise? where do you derive your authority to wag your finger and tell them that, silly Hindus, you're all damned to hell?
Perhaps, I'm misunderstanding you, but are you suggesting that it is somehow wrong or disrespectful to be a missionary or to try to spread your faith to other parts of the world?

Missionary activity has long been a part of many faiths (after all, how would Buddhism have gotten to East Asia? Even today there are Buddhist sects that promote prosyletyzing. Just so we're clear that it's not just the Christians with the "converting" bug). I think that any believer in a free society would expect allowance for a free exchange of ideas and for respectful attempts to share your beliefs with others.

I mean there are places where missionary activity is prohibited. But they also tend to be places that are totalitarian in nature.

Not that there isn't such a thing as "bad" or "unacceptable" missionary activity. There certainly is. Barbara Kingsolver's excellent novel "The Poisonwood Bible" gives a brilliant example of the sort of missionary activity that is totally reprehensible.

Forgive me if I take a little humbrage here, as I'm a missionary myself.
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Old 12-16-2006, 08:31 PM   #140
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Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar


And this is exactly why we should be careful of making statements such as this:

Quote:
I believe that all Muslims are wrong, and will not be going to Heaven


Someone actually said this?!?
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Old 12-16-2006, 08:36 PM   #141
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I think the will of the father starts with accepting Christ as your Lord, though. That's what it says, too. It's throughout the NT.

And again, if you sent your son to die so someone could spend eternity in heaven, would you allow them to take a different way?
I wouldn't. It would negate my son's sacrifice. Why did Jesus die then?
I find your implication interesting here. . .it would seem to me that you're implying that the magnitude of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross is so great that it nullifies our freedom of choice. I don't buy that (if that's what your saying).

God is love. Love is rooted in free will. So of course God would allow us to "take a different way. . ."

Oh wait. Are you saying "take a different way" as in reject God's offer of salvation or are you saying "take a different way" as in take a different road to salvation.

Perhaps you should clarify first before I go barking up the wrong tree.
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Old 12-16-2006, 08:47 PM   #142
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Originally posted by maycocksean


Someone actually said this?!?
Unfortunately yes.
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Old 12-16-2006, 09:16 PM   #143
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Originally posted by maycocksean


Someone actually said this?!?
Do your life a favour and don't visit the Fundies Say The Darndest Things website. That sort of statement is so tame that it probably wouldn't even be approved for publication there.

I would like to post my thoughts on this topic, but firstly, I don't normally post about religion on this forum so I'm a bit nervous about doing so, and secondly, I think some of you folk have already stated pretty much all of what I wanted to say anyway. This has been an interesting thread.
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Old 12-16-2006, 09:55 PM   #144
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Originally posted by maycocksean


Perhaps, I'm misunderstanding you, but are you suggesting that it is somehow wrong or disrespectful to be a missionary or to try to spread your faith to other parts of the world?

Missionary activity has long been a part of many faiths (after all, how would Buddhism have gotten to East Asia? Even today there are Buddhist sects that promote prosyletyzing. Just so we're clear that it's not just the Christians with the "converting" bug). I think that any believer in a free society would expect allowance for a free exchange of ideas and for respectful attempts to share your beliefs with others.

I mean there are places where missionary activity is prohibited. But they also tend to be places that are totalitarian in nature.

Not that there isn't such a thing as "bad" or "unacceptable" missionary activity. There certainly is. Barbara Kingsolver's excellent novel "The Poisonwood Bible" gives a brilliant example of the sort of missionary activity that is totally reprehensible.

Forgive me if I take a little humbrage here, as I'm a missionary myself.
See here is my idea with this. I don't think religion should be promoted or subltely "pushed" onto people. I think religion should be something people look for, or find.

I don't like the religion care charities who go into countries and give aid ALONG with religious paraphanalia. These people are desperate, starving people. They don't need their minds toyed with ideas that are not accpeted by a lot of people in the world, or swayed by kind people saying 'we're not giving you this food, the love of god is giving you this food' and guilt trip them into something.

I understand why there are missionaries, but surely, you would want people to come from their own curiosity into your faith rather then have to push push push it on people until they bend to the ideas (which is how i see it, im sure others see it differently)

Anyway, just a thought as i was reading
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Old 12-17-2006, 04:01 PM   #145
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Originally posted by AussieU2fanman
Acutually the first book of the new testament has been dated to be written at least 55 years after the death of Christ at best. However, it doesn't matter because the new testament is divinely inspired, inerrant and is the word of God because somebody with self proclaimed authority deems it to be so.
The first book in the ordered New Testament, Matthew, has been dated as late as 55 years after the death of Christ. Mark, the second book of the Bible, can be dated as early as fifteen years after Jesus' death and resurrection. Paul's letters, which were begun written in the early 50s, include canonical statements which indicate that theology was already fairly well-formed in terms of Jesus' identity, even without written word (the early Christian church, which was primarily Jewish, followed the Jewish oral traditions).

Not to derail from the interesting places this thread has gone.
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Old 12-17-2006, 09:27 PM   #146
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[Q]I find your implication interesting here. . .it would seem to me that you're implying that the magnitude of Jesus' sacrifice on the cross is so great that it nullifies our freedom of choice. I don't buy that (if that's what your saying).[/Q]

What if the sacrafice of Christ is not one of choice on our part but completely dependant on him?

If that is the case then the sacrafice he made is truly representative of all people no matter what the faith.

SO what does it boil down to?

There are many who go out and do things in Christs name...

But only those that do the will of the father get in.

And that makes sense to me
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Old 12-17-2006, 10:34 PM   #147
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Originally posted by maycocksean


Perhaps, I'm misunderstanding you, but are you suggesting that it is somehow wrong or disrespectful to be a missionary or to try to spread your faith to other parts of the world?

Missionary activity has long been a part of many faiths (after all, how would Buddhism have gotten to East Asia? Even today there are Buddhist sects that promote prosyletyzing. Just so we're clear that it's not just the Christians with the "converting" bug). I think that any believer in a free society would expect allowance for a free exchange of ideas and for respectful attempts to share your beliefs with others.

I mean there are places where missionary activity is prohibited. But they also tend to be places that are totalitarian in nature.

Not that there isn't such a thing as "bad" or "unacceptable" missionary activity. There certainly is. Barbara Kingsolver's excellent novel "The Poisonwood Bible" gives a brilliant example of the sort of missionary activity that is totally reprehensible.

Forgive me if I take a little humbrage here, as I'm a missionary myself.


i don't think it takes too much to agree that much of missionary history coincides with colonialist history. religion being one of many justifications that white people used to subjugate the unwashed brown masses across the globe.

as for contemporary missionary work -- yes, in some senses, i do have a problem with it. if you are in a country doing good humanitarian work because you feel as if your religion asks to you do so, that's one thing; if you share your religion in a respectful manner as part of a larger conversation about yourself, that's one thing; however, to show up and resolve to convert the masses to Christ (which, as history has shown us, makes them easier to govern) out of a mixture of contempt and guilt, that's something else entirely.
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Old 12-18-2006, 01:16 AM   #148
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Originally posted by dazzlingamy


See here is my idea with this. I don't think religion should be promoted or subltely "pushed" onto people. I think religion should be something people look for, or find.

I don't like the religion care charities who go into countries and give aid ALONG with religious paraphanalia. These people are desperate, starving people. They don't need their minds toyed with ideas that are not accpeted by a lot of people in the world, or swayed by kind people saying 'we're not giving you this food, the love of god is giving you this food' and guilt trip them into something.

I understand why there are missionaries, but surely, you would want people to come from their own curiosity into your faith rather then have to push push push it on people until they bend to the ideas (which is how i see it, im sure others see it differently)

Anyway, just a thought as i was reading
Believe it or not, I actually agree with most of what you're saying.

I don't believe that my faith (or anyone's for that matter) should ever be "pushed" on anyone. Missionaries that take that approach (and I know they exist) are in the wrong.

I also agree that charity or aid work used as a "cloak" for the REAL agenda of getting people into one's church is wrong too. This mindset is far more common. . .I hear people talk like this sometimes in my own church and it always bothers me. But just this past Saturday the guy preaching talked about how Jesus never gave in order to get something (like followers) and I thought, wow that is really right. If Christians are going to go out and do aid work, they should just go out and do it without the expectation that they're going to somehow use it as "an entering wedge" for eventual conversion.

Finally, you're right I would prefer that people come to my faith through genuine interest rather than through coercion or manipulation (both of which are antithetical to the spirit of my faith).

But that does not mean that I think that I or believers of any faith (or lack thereof) should just shut up and not say anything about what they believe (or don't believe).

There's one key difference in our assumptions about missionary work. You assume that religion is nonsense, a lot of silly fables and superstitions. So naturally, you would prefer if people weren't hoodwinking other people with these ideas. From that perspective I can understand why you would dislike missionary activity. . .it's not the activity itself so much as it is the ideas that you view as at best useless and at worst downright dangerous.

But step into my shoes. What if you believed that the faith was a really good thing, something that would enrich a persons life and bring them very real personal satisfaction. What if you thought you had something really good to offer? How could you not share that?

Now obviously one of us is mistaken. Maybe it's me. Maybe it's you. But in a free society, we have to allow for both views to be put out there. I should have the freedom to share my faith. You should have the freedom to speak out against it (or mock it. . .A_Wanderer's favorite tactic! )
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Old 12-18-2006, 01:36 AM   #149
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i don't think it takes too much to agree that much of missionary history coincides with colonialist history. religion being one of many justifications that white people used to subjugate the unwashed brown masses across the globe.
Indeed. But I think the primary issue there is the mixing of church and state which we both agree is absolutely the worst thing for the state and the worst thing for the church. But Christianity pre-Constantine certainly wasn't being used a force of subjugation. Joining the early church meant you put your life on the line, and yet it grew like wildfire. To take it out of the Christian context for a moment--because again I want to emphasize that prosletyzing isn't something unqique to the Bible-beaters--as far as I know the spread of Buddhism into East Asia (China, Japan etc) did not happen through subjugation either. It happend through missionaries who genuinely believed they had something better to offer, and apparently a lot of people in East Asia agreed.

Quote:
Originally posted by Irvine511

as for contemporary missionary work -- yes, in some senses, i do have a problem with it. if you are in a country doing good humanitarian work because you feel as if your religion asks to you do so, that's one thing; if you share your religion in a respectful manner as part of a larger conversation about yourself, that's one thing; however, to show up and resolve to convert the masses to Christ (which, as history has shown us, makes them easier to govern) out of a mixture of contempt and guilt, that's something else entirely.
Agreed. I've always believed it's entirely outside of human power to convert anyone and it is foolish--and harmful--to try. It is my belief that conversion, if and when it happens, is strictly the work of the Holy Spirit and there is nothing a person can do to "make" it happen, other than, perhaps, to pray.

However, I do believe that I'm asked, as a Christian, to put my faith out there. The best way to do that is just to treat people with love and compassion. St. Francis said something to this effect: "Preach the gospel always. If necessary use words." (Course you know me, I do love using words )

So what do I do as a missionary?

I teach in a private, mission school. The students know that we are religious school and so the fact that I teach a Bible class, have worship every morning, pray at the beginning of the day etc is a given. I hope that my example, the concept of "Christ living in me etc" will draw them to Him. I like teaching in a mission environment because teaching back in the states in SDA school it'd be just a bunch of jaded, borded "born and raised Adventist" kids who've heard it all before and seen the movie too. (Plus though the church is more conservative here, the church is much more "present" in the schools in the U.S. so I wouldn't be able to get away with things like playing U2 in class!). I also prefer it to teaching in a public school environment where I'd feel it would be inappropriate to talk about my faith.

I also direct a traveling Christian theater troupe. We perform at schools, churches, and community events on our island and in other parts of the Pacific. When we perform at public schools we focus on general postive values that we all share rather than anything tied to our religion specifcially. In neutral arenas or at religious events we strive to tell "parables" spiritually themed stories that the audience can take or leave. It's also a mission in the sense of working with the teens in the group, giving them the opportunity to see God at work in and through them through what we do.

So that's how I'm a missionary. Feel free to pick it apart--we have a lot of mutual respect, so I can take it!

But I'm getting off topic here. . . .
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Old 12-18-2006, 03:18 PM   #150
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[Q]However, I do believe that I'm asked, as a Christian, to put my faith out there. The best way to do that is just to treat people with love and compassion. St. Francis said something to this effect: "Preach the gospel always. If necessary use words." (Course you know me, I do love using words ) [/Q]

I love being a Lion. We come from all faiths and backgrounds....not worried about anything other than helping others.

I feel my actions are better than words. But that is me.

I totally respect the job you do.
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