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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Very good description Sentry. I agree with you somewhat but still have issue with accepting that even if this world is controlled by evil that the Lord Lord cant intervene. I know that scripture can be used to back up any statement. Maybe being due to human failure I still cannot seem to accept many things of this nature. It is possible the reason I am still part of this planet and society is because I have not learned what I need to to progress to the next level. "Good die young and all that". I learn every day so eventually maybe I will be led in the right path or see it myself and follow. I dont think I have had enough coffee this morning to effectively discuss any more intelligently at this point.
We had the opportunity to have free will and we took it. With free will came non-interference. God loves us so much He will let us walk down whatever path we choose, no matter how much it pleases or hurts Him. That being said God can and does intervene for His children. We can never truly know how much or how often. But to be a child of God requires belief, not claims of belief but actual belief. We don't know what is in the hearts of people so we don't know who is truly a believer and who is not. We also do not know who is praying for what. We do know that God provides His believers with mercy and grace. Mercy is not receiving what we deserve and grace is receiving what we do not deserve. I know I receive both on a daily basis. I also know I receive His protection on a daily basis. I have three times stood at death's door step and each time was spared. Perhaps it takes something like that to awaken one's internal spirit and to quiet the voice of free will which often interferes with our choosing to receive such blessings. Like the voice of satan, the voice in our heads do not always give us the best of advice. That is why I rely on Faith instead of sight. My faith has never failed me, and never will.
 

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I don't like the title. The 9 statements can be wrong but to assume they're lies means that the people who say them know the truth and that's not likely. I don't necessarily agree with them all.

I'll address each statement separately as needed.

#1

Yes, our sins are forgiven. We won't have to answer for the sins we committed before we became Christians but we're not free to sin. There are natural consequences to sin. And whatever God does to punish us for our sins. We are accountable to God for our actions. We will all have to give an account for our deeds at the Judgment Seat of Christ.

(Romans 14:10-12 NIV) You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God's judgment seat. {11} It is written: "'As surely as I live,' says the Lord, 'every knee will bow before me; every tongue will confess to God.'" {12} So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God.

(2 Corinthians 5:10 NIV) For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive what is due him for the things done while in the body, whether good or bad.

(2 Corinthians 10:5 NIV) We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
 

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So as the resident atheist it seams #1 between bills and sentrys post reads he will not keep score but you must testify before him. Is that wrong?
 

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#2

I agree for the most part. God is not mad at you 24/7/365. As a parent you can be mad at your child for what they have done but you aren't angry with them 24/7/365. They don't cease to be your child. God is not your abusive father who always told you that you couldn't do anything right. God is a father but because God is spirit it takes a mother and a father to show the full qualities of God. God is more compassionate than a mother.

(Revelation 7:17 NIV) For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes."

(Psalms 103:13 NIV) As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him;

(Psalms 145:9 NIV) The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.

(2 Corinthians 1:3-4 NIV) Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, {4} who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
So as the resident atheist it seams #1 between bills and sentrys post reads he will not keep score but you must testify before him. Is that wrong?
In Christianity of today there are 3 types of believers. 1) Those who still exist entirely in the old covenant, 2) those who keep one foot into each covenant because they are not ready to complete give up the law and embrace righteousness (often referred to as "mixture") and 3) those who embrace the gift of righteousness and focus on the inheritance they received as a co-heir of Jesus Christ (including the propitiation of sin). The answer to your question depends on where the feet of the believer rests. Most mainstream "Big C" churches (denominational religion) live in the 2nd category. Regardless God allows each believer to live in whatever covenant they feel is the one for them. Okay there is really is 4, which are the buffet churches who just pick and choose what to use and what to ignore. But I don't consider them to really be Christians or believers.

2 Corinthians 3:9 If the ministry that brought condemnation was glorious, how much more glorious is the ministry that brings righteousness!

Philippians 3:15-16 "Let us therefore, as many as are perfect, have this
attitude; and if in anything you have a different attitude, God will reveal that also to you; however, let us keep living by that same standard to which we have attained."

However as a part of category 3, I say there is no accounting for sin. In the new testament and in the new covenant people read the word sin and presume it is a verb (sinful acts or thoughts) when in fact it is almost always a noun (our sinful nature).

Romans 5:13 tells us that "Yes, people sinned even before the law was given. But it was not counted as sin because there was not yet any law to break." then later in Romans 10:4 scripture says "For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes." So the law has come to an end for all believers. No law, no sin, no accounting for sinful actions, thoughts or behaviors.

1 Corinthians 10:23 "All things are lawful," but not all things are helpful. "All things are lawful," but not all things build up.

Isaiah 43:25 "I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more."

Hebrews 8:12 "For I will be merciful toward their iniquities, and I will remember their sins no more."

Hebrews 10:17 "Their sins and lawless acts I will remember no more."

2 Corinthians 5:19 "For God was in Christ, reconciling the world to himself, no longer counting people's sins against them. And he gave us this wonderful message of reconciliation."

I don't have time to lash out against the misconception and misinformation that is "confession". Confession is not going to a priest or pastor and telling them what you have done, nor is it falling on your knees and trying to account to God the bad things you have done. The word confession in Greek is "homologia" which in the biblical sense means " the collective agreement of Christians about what God loves and hates and the courage to proclaim it". Meaning the internal and personal acknowledgement of right and wrong in the eyes of the Lord. God never stops loving you, God is never disappointed in you, God never stops forgiving you, God does not hold your sin against you and God sees you as perfect and pleasing just the way you are.
 

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#3 The idea that God punishes his children is supposed to be a lie.

Wrong.

(Proverbs 3:11-12 NIV) My son, do not despise the Lord's discipline and do not resent his rebuke, {12} because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.

(Hebrews 12:5-11 NIV) And you have forgotten that word of encouragement that addresses you as sons: "My son, do not make light of the Lord's discipline, and do not lose heart when he rebukes you, {6} because the Lord disciplines those he loves, and he punishes everyone he accepts as a son." {7} Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as sons. For what son is not disciplined by his father? {8} If you are not disciplined (and everyone undergoes discipline), then you are illegitimate children and not true sons. {9} Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of our spirits and live! {10} Our fathers disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, that we may share in his holiness. {11} No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
#3 The idea that God punishes his children is supposed to be a lie.

Wrong.
Scripture does not seem to agree with you. Not unless you keep your focus in the old covenant anyway.

Isaiah 54:9, "Just as I swore in the time of Noah that I would never again let a flood cover the earth, so now I swear that I will never again be angry and punish you."
 

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4. God makes you sick to teach you things

I don't agree that it's a lie. For instance we have this:

(1 Corinthians 11:28-31 NIV) A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup. {29} For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself. {30} That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. {31} But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment.

I think it's foolish to say that if you got cancer that it's somehow not God's doing. Or that God categorically would never give you cancer, or allow you to get cancer, as a way to teach you something. Or as a way to make you grow.

My wife and I have visited a number of churches where we prayed for the health of the pastor's wife or one of his children. Dealing with sickness and being an example of remaining faithful even in the midst of suffering can definitely be the will of God for his glory.
 

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Discussion Starter · #29 ·
4. God makes you sick to teach you things

I don't agree that it's a lie. For instance we have this:

(1 Corinthians 11:28-31 NIV) A man ought to examine himself before he eats of the bread and drinks of the cup. {29} For anyone who eats and drinks without recognizing the body of the Lord eats and drinks judgment on himself. {30} That is why many among you are weak and sick, and a number of you have fallen asleep. {31} But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment.

I think it's foolish to say that if you got cancer that it's somehow not God's doing. Or that God categorically would never give you cancer, or allow you to get cancer, as a way to teach you something. Or as a way to make you grow.

My wife and I have visited a number of churches where we prayed for the health of the pastor's wife or one of his children. Dealing with sickness and being an example of remaining faithful even in the midst of suffering can definitely be the will of God for his glory.
Your interpretation of the bible seems to be based entirely in the covenant of moses and the law. I sure hope you are sacrificing bulls and goats to ensure your forgiveness of sins. You can't live under the wrath of the old covenant and expect to receive all the blessings of the new.

Twice in the bible it is described how people were ill and it was not of God's doing. Matthew (17:14-18) and Luke (13:10-16) were apparently foolish by your estimate.

I would prefer to live under Psalm 103:2-3, "Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and forget not all his benefits, He forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases"

God is good, all the time, if it is not good, it is not God.

"We know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose" (Romans 8:28). In every situation, even in our darkest situations, we "give thanks to the LORD, for he is good" (Psalm 136:1). In fact, "No one is good except God alone" (Mark 10:18).
 

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#5 God gives and takes away.

Romans 11:29 is being misapplied. Here's the complete text:

(Romans 11:28-33 NIV) As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on your account; but as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, {29} for God's gifts and his call are irrevocable. {30} Just as you who were at one time disobedient to God have now received mercy as a result of their disobedience, {31} so they too have now become disobedient in order that they too may now receive mercy as a result of God's mercy to you. {32} For God has bound all men over to disobedience so that he may have mercy on them all. {33} Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!

Romans 11:29 refers to salvation.

I was married before. My wife died when she was 30. She was definitely a gift that was taken away from me. The Bible says that children are a gift from God. Our two children were stillborn.

Jobs can be a gift from God too but jobs don't last forever either. Just as cars and other things don't last forever.

I agree that that people don't die because God wanted another angel in Heaven. People don't become angels when they die. People in Heaven have a different purpose than angels.

I don't like the idea of judging someone as being in sin as being the reason something bad happened to them. We don't know what's in their hearts or in the heart of God. It's bad enough when bad things happen to people. We don't need to give them false guilt as well.

Other times you have to wonder. I've seen a number of times where the sexual sin of a professing Christian was followed by a miscarriage or a crib death. Not every time. You can't look at any single one and say it was because of sin. But there seems to be significantly more of them in those circumstances.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Many believers who live in the old covenant or mixture attribute things to God that should be attributed to satan. Satan is the ruler of this world, satan brings your pain and suffering, satan brings death and disease, satan brings hurricanes and disasters; NOT GOD. Not in the new covenant anyway. Not since Christ died on the cross and resurrected.

2 Corinthians 4:4, "Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God."

2 Corinthians 3:6, "Who has made us competent to be ministers of a new covenant, not of the letter but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life."

Romans 7:6, "But now we are released from the law, having died to that which held us captive, so that we serve in the new way of the Spirit and not in the old way of the written code."

Hebrews 8:6, "But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises."

Romans 8:1-39, "There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death. For God has done what the law, weakened by the flesh, could not do. By sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and for sin, he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit."
 

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#6 gets interesting. You can't deny these verses:

(Romans 11:21-23 NIV) For if God did not spare the natural branches, he will not spare you either. {22} Consider therefore the kindness and sternness of God: sternness to those who fell, but kindness to you, provided that you continue in his kindness. Otherwise, you also will be cut off. {23} And if they do not persist in unbelief, they will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again.

It would appear that those who follow for awhile but ultimately abandon God and do not return are giving up their salvation. Other people might say that they were never truly saved in the first place.

I have to disagree with the statement that, "Nothing can make you more or less pleasing to God than you already are." God wants his children to be obedient. He wants them to reach their full potential as Christians. In fact, God's ultimate aim for each of us is to make us as much like Christ as possible. God could sacrifice our health, our families, or our possessions to achieve that if necessary.
 

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7. God can be bought

“Grace is free but you have to prove you were worth it. God wants your service, your sacrifice, and your money.” The endless appeals for sweat and coin are a hallmark of DIY religion. “Jesus died for you. What will you do for him?” It’s an anti-Christ message that prostitutes the love of God by putting price-tags on the priceless.

"A holy God cannot be bribed; your Father’s love cannot be bought. You cannot pay for salvation, sanctification, or any of the blessings of God. But the gospel truth is that all the blessings of God are ours in Christ (Eph 1:3). We are not blessed because we give but because he gives."

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Some of it is true but we should serve Christ will all our hearts because of what He did for us. We don't earn our salvation. We already have it. But we are not our own. We belong to Christ. We should serve Christ by serving people.
 

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8. God can’t be trusted

“You have to maintain your place in the kingdom by bearing fruit, pursuing holiness, and being a productive Christian.” Nothing will kill your faith faster than the lie that says, “It all depends on you.” This is serpent theology: “If you fast, pray, give, and do a hundred other things, you’ll claw your way into the throne room. You’ll be a self-made god.”

The gospel truth is that you are saved by grace and kept by grace. You can trust Jesus that the good work he began in you he will carry on unto completion (Php 1:6). You don’t stand on your promises to God, but on his awesome promises to you.

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You aren't saved by works but works should accompany faith. You should bear fruit and pursue holiness because that's what God requires of us.
 

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9. God doesn’t really love you

An angry God that keeps score, punishes you with hardships, makes you sick, and threatens to cast you aside, is not a God of love. He’s an idol made in our own fallen image, a perversion that reveals our fear and insecurity. Remove the religious mask and you will find it is Satan who is constantly accusing you and finding fault with you.

The God that Jesus revealed is nothing like this! “God is your Father in heaven who loves you and holds nothing against you! God doesn’t want to crush you, he wants to hug you and hold you and rejoice over you with singing, for you are the apple of his eye!

The gospel truth is that God loves you unconditionally, no strings attached. He doesn’t love you because you did good or kept the rules. He loves you because he is your Father. Period. Amen. The end.

What if I have bought into these lies?

Listen to the damnable lies of religion and you will bear the bad fruit of fear and doubt. You will lose your peace, joy, and freedom and end up anxious, insecure, and fallen from grace.

What’s the remedy?

Jesus said those who love truth recognize his voice. So fix your eyes on Jesus, get settled in his love, and let nothing move you. Remain in your Father’s embrace and you will never be seduced by the lies of dead religion.

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Yes, God loves everyone but most people will refuse to repent of their sins and accept what Jesus did on the cross as payment for those sins. God doesn't want anyone to go to hell but that's the ultimate choice for most of mankind.

God will reward us in Heaven for the good we have done on earth. God will also punish us on earth for the sins we commit on earth after we were saved.

(Jeremiah 17:9-10 NIV) The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it? {10} "I the LORD search the heart and examine the mind, to reward a man according to his conduct, according to what his deeds deserve."

Yes, God loves us. We don't have to live in fear that we will never measure up. Or that it's over for us because we committed some sin in the past. God is holy. God hates sin. But God is forgiving and compassionate.

(1 John 1:9 NIV) If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.
 

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I'm looking for evidence that God exists that can't be explained away.
That's pretty easy. Read the Bible in a translation you can understand. Like the NIV. Pray to God. Ask Him to reveal himself to you.

A good book for the honest skeptic is this one:

https://www.amazon.com/Evidence-tha...=8-3&keywords=evidence+that+demands+a+verdict

A good site is this one:

https://bibleevidences.com/accuracy-of-prophecy/

Arguably the most compelling of evidences demonstrating that the Bible is the word of God is its unswerving ability to accurately predict future events, often in minute details. Specific prophesies are conspicuously absent from the 26 other religious books that claim to be scripture, including the Muslim's Koran, the Book of Mormon, the Hindu Vedas, and Buddhist writings1. This in itself should be a major eye-opener to the honest skeptic. God through the prophet Isaiah once challenged the pagan idolaters of that time to "tell us what the future holds, so we may know that you are gods (Isaiah 41:23)."

The Jewish Nation

Perhaps the greatest and most obvious testimony to the accuracy of Biblical prophecy is provided by the people and nation of Israel. The Jews went without a homeland for 1900 years, just as God had promised numerous times in the Old Testament2, as a reluctant judgment on His rebellious chosen people. Moses warned Israel that if they corrupted themselves, then "the LORD shall scatter thee among all people, from the one end of the earth even unto the other (Deut 28:64, KJV)". Remarkably, this century God restored the Jews to their ancient homeland, fulfilling many other specific Old Testament prophesies3.

It is inconceivable to me how the honest skeptic could deny God's handiwork in the history of the people of Israel. Throughout history the "wandering Jew" has been hated and despised, yet despite the unbelievable persecution they endured, the Jews somehow managed to maintain their identity such that when God's timeclock warranted they were able to re-group as a nation in their ancient homeland. Indeed, history is replete with once great nations which were eventually overrun and defeated, but whose people were over time absorbed into the culture of the conquering nation. The fact that this did not happen to the Jews is nothing short of miraculous. There are American Jews, German Jews, Russian Jews, etc.; have you ever heard of a German Babalonian, or an American Philistine? The plight of this small percentage of humanity is certainly unique and unprecedented in the annals of world history.

Finally, who can deny the volatility of the Middle East, with Israel as the boiling point, and the worldwide focus of attention she receives. Consider for a moment that Israel is roughly the size of New Jersey, the 5th smallest state in the United States. Yet despite this, it's extremely revealing that the United Nations has adopted 97 resolutions against Israel between 1955 and 2013, and during that same time only 4 resolutions against the rest of the world! And as Fox News reported in March 2016, the UN named democratic Israel as the world's top human rights violator! Bear this in mind when reading the following Bible passage, written almost 2500 years ago, and also consider that this was written at a time when Jerusalem was in complete ruins:

Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah and against Jerusalem. And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces, though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it… For I will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle; and the city shall be taken, and the houses rifled, and the women ravished; and half of the city shall go forth into captivity, and the residue of the people shall not be cut off from the city. Then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations, as when he fought in the day of battle (Zech 12:2-3, Zech 14:2-3 KJV)."
As noted author Dave Hunt so aptly put it:

The fulfillment of hundreds of specific prophecies in the ancient and modern history of the Jewish people is God's great sign to mankind-a sign that no one can mistake or deny…Jewish history stands as a universal visible monument to God's existence4.

Predicted Fate of Numerous Cities and Nations

What if I were to give you the following predictions:

1. Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (Iran) will destroy all but the island portion of New York City.
2. Many nations will fight against New York City.
3. The debris from the buildings in New York City will be thrown in the water to access Long Island.
4. New York City will be made a bare and flat like the top of a rock.
5. Fishermen will spread their nets over the heap that was once New York City.
6. New York City will never be re-built.
7. New York City's glory will never be restored.
8. I will be laughed at and mocked, and disregarded as a lunatic.
I'm sure the last one is about the only one I would get right! I would certainly have earned my rightful place in the heap of ridicule. What is amazing is that the prophet Ezekiel made these same predictions (except for 8, of course), with Nebuchadnezzar replacing Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, and Tyre replacing New York City/Long Island - his prophecy was fulfilled to the last detail!

At the time Ezekiel made this prophecy (Ezekiel 26), Tyre was a powerful city holding a stature much like that of New York City today. Three years after the prophecy Nebuchadnezzar indeed laid siege to the city5. The inhabitants all but abandoned the city and moved off-shore to a nearby island, where they fortified themselves and remained a powerful city for several hundred more years. During this time it must have seemed that Ezekiel's prophecy was not wholly correct, but then came Alexander the Great, who eventually built a causeway to the island using debris from the old mainland city of Tyre!6 More conquerors were to follow7. It wasn't until the 12th century A.D. before the final prophetic chapter was closed on the once great city of Tyre. Its fitting that a secular historian would eventually write the following:

tyre-fishermen…[Tyre] never regained the place she had previously held in the world. The larger part of the site of the once great city is now bare as the top of a rock - a place where the fishermen that still frequent the spot spread their nets to dry8.
Let's see how well the previous description of present-day Tyre matches what the Bible had to say:

"And they shall destroy the walls of Tyrus, and break down her towers: I will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock. It shall be a place for the spreading of nets in the midst of the sea: for I have spoken it, saith the Lord GOD: and it shall become a spoil to the nations (Ezek 26:4-5 KJV)."

The Tyre prophecy is but one of about 1500 Old Testament prophesies of minute detail relating to cities or nations that have already been fulfilled. Anyone can verify the numerous fulfilled prophesies of such cities as Sidon, Edom, Samaria, and nations such as Egypt, Babylon, and Rome.

Speaking of Egypt, there is another prophecy also recorded in Ezekiel that I would like to share with you: "and there shall be no more a prince of the land of Egypt (Ezek 30:13, KJV)." Twenty-five hundred years have passed since this prophecy, and during this period of time not one of its numerous ruling princes were Egyptian! This would be similar to my predicting that their would never again be an American elected President of the United States, and having it actually come true.

Messianic Prophesies

Dr. D. James Kennedy wrote of an encounter he had with a Jewish man who said he did not believe in Christ. Dr. Kennedy responded that he was sorry to hear that, and added "…Since He is the Messiah of the Jewish people who was promised in the Old Testament, you have rejected your own Messiah." He then went on to share with the Jewish man a few verses of scripture:

Jesus-Crucifixion"All who see me mock me; they hurl insults, shaking their heads: 'He trusts in the LORD; let the LORD rescue him. Let him deliver him, since he delights in him (Ps 22:7-8)"
"But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed (Isa 53:5)"
"Even my close friend, whom I trusted, he who shared my bread, has lifted up his heel against me (Ps 41:9)."
"They have pierced my hands and my feet (Ps 22:16)."
"Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors (Isa 53:12)."
"They will look on me, the one they have pierced, and they will mourn for him as one mourns for an only child, and grieve bitterly for him as one grieves for a firstborn son (Zech 12:10)."

When Dr. Kennedy finished reading these scriptures to the Jewish man, he asked him to whom these verses were referring to. The man responded that "Obviously they are talking about Jesus… So what?". Dr. Kennedy then pointed out that all the verses he had just read to him were from the Old Testament! The man was stunned and demanded to see the passages with his own eyes9.

According to secular sources, crucifixion was invented as a method of capital punishment no earlier than the 6th century BC10. This is 4 centuries after David wrote in Psalms 22:16, "They have pierced my hands and my feet". Even if critics try to persuade against a 1000 BC date for Psalms 22, they can't deny this Psalm existed in the Septuagint and Dead Sea Scrolls that were translated around 200 BC11. Does the critic really want to try to convince us that a Jesus pretender would want to self-fulfill such a terrible way to die?

The Old Testament contains 333 prophesies regarding the Messiah, most of which were fulfilled by the first coming of Jesus Christ. Even the most liberal critics acknowledge that these prophesies were written at least 400 years before Christ. Mathematicians have easily shown that the odds of all these prophesies being fulfilled by chance in one man is greater than the number of atoms in the universe many times over.

New Age "Prophets"

Some critics will point to the "success" of non-biblical "prophets" such as Nostradamus, Edgar Cayce, and Jeane Dixon, to name a few. A careful and subjective check of their methods, however, reveals that their predictions were really no better than you or I or the local fortune-teller could make. Take Jeane Dixon, for example. The prediction that made her famous, regarding the assassination of JFK, was really not that amazing after all. She predicted that "the Democratic contender will win, but he will be assassinated or die in office, though not necessarily in the first term". Considering the history of past presidents, and the fact that she allowed 8 years for the event to occur, her chance of success was 7 to 3! She also prophesied that WWIII would begin in 1954, Nixon would defeat Kennedy (contradicting her earlier prediction!), and Jacqueline Kennedy would not marry Aristotle Onasis (she married him the next day!). This is but a handful of her false prophesies.

These "prophets" were also frequently so vague in the predictions they made that you could mold them into about any historical event you wanted. Its amazing to read about the events that Nostradamus supposedly prophesied about, then compare the details of the event with what Nostradamus actually wrote. You're left asking, how in the heck did they draw those conclusions?! Note that these "experts" on Nostradamus's work were only able to make their claims after the supposedly predicted event had passed. This complete lack of a priori analysis, coupled with the incredibly vague nature of the Nostradamus "prophesies", should be more than enough reason for the honest inquirer to dismiss any claims of prophetic success put forth by Nostradamus's advocates12. In contrast, most of the Biblical prophesies are specific and detailed, with quite a few interpreted a priori13.

To the Christian the afore-mentioned individuals are easily exposed as false prophets based on the Biblical tests for a prophet. The Bible forbids the use of occult artifacts, which all were guilty of, and more importantly,

"If what a prophet proclaims in the name of the LORD does not take place or come true, that is a message the LORD has not spoken. That prophet has spoken presumptuously. Do not be afraid of him. (Deut 18:22)"

Woman inside BibleSummary

The Bible contains over 2000 prophesies that have been fulfilled, many with very specific details. One must ask himself why he would remain skeptical in light of this incontrovertible evidence. It would seem that if someone was honestly seeking the truth, it would certainly be a worthwhile effort to to at least investigate a handful of these prophesies. Psalm 22 would be a good start - it contains several prophesies describing Christ's crucifixion, a method of execution that wasn't invented until several centuries after King David wrote about it. A Bible and an encyclopedia is all one would need to verify the prophetic accuracy of Psalm 22.

"Therefore I told you these things long ago; before they happened I announced them to you so that you could not say, 'My idols did them; my wooden image and metal god ordained them (Isaiah 48:5)."
 

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Unfortunately the word has been written / translated by men. (Humans)

I have seen too many things that make me think that a just God would not allow things to be the way they are. Children dying. Children being punished for the acts of their parents? Children with cancer. The list could go on. If the "God" I am instructed to believe in is so cruel to such innocents then why would I want to "worship" a being that "welcomes" us to heaven? We supposedly go to heaven to worship our creator yet this same creator allows such depravity here on earth.

I pray. I pray for those that suffer. I pray for those that cannot protect themselves. I pray for humanity. I believe there is a supreme being out there. I am just not sure what I I'll find when I pass from this existence to the last.

Faith, I suppose, is all we have at this point. I want to believe and understand but for me I have more questions than answers. Sentry, I accept you are a man of faith and there is nothing wrong with that. I am just not sure that I agree with all of that at this point.

I have seen some strange and wonderful things Amish but nothing that has convinced me it is divine intervention at this point. I hope I do some day.
Our biggest need is to repent of our sins and to accept what Jesus did on the cross as payment for those sins. Otherwise we'll spend eternity in hell. If life was perfect on earth we'd have no need for God.

Yes, bad things happen. Most of what's wrong with the world is the fault of mankind.

I could be wrong in your case but I think with most people they don't believe in God because they don't want to believe. The Bible is clear that we're without excuse:

(Romans 1:18-20 NIV) The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, {19} since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. {20} For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--his eternal power and divine nature--have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse.
 

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Scripture does not seem to agree with you. Not unless you keep your focus in the old covenant anyway.

Isaiah 54:9, "Just as I swore in the time of Noah that I would never again let a flood cover the earth, so now I swear that I will never again be angry and punish you."
No, scripture agrees with me. Even if you throw out the Old Testament verses even though Paul quotes from them, there's more than enough New Testament evidence for what I said.

You take verses out of context. Look at it in context:

(Isaiah 54:1-13 NIV) "Sing, O barren woman, you who never bore a child; burst into song, shout for joy, you who were never in labor; because more are the children of the desolate woman than of her who has a husband," says the LORD. {2} "Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back; lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. {3} For you will spread out to the right and to the left; your descendants will dispossess nations and settle in their desolate cities. {4} "Do not be afraid; you will not suffer shame. Do not fear disgrace; you will not be humiliated. You will forget the shame of your youth and remember no more the reproach of your widowhood. {5} For your Maker is your husband-- the LORD Almighty is his name-- the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer; he is called the God of all the earth. {6} The LORD will call you back as if you were a wife deserted and distressed in spirit-- a wife who married young, only to be rejected," says your God. {7} "For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with deep compassion I will bring you back. {8} In a surge of anger I hid my face from you for a moment, but with everlasting kindness I will have compassion on you," says the LORD your Redeemer. {9} "To me this is like the days of Noah, when I swore that the waters of Noah would never again cover the earth. So now I have sworn not to be angry with you, never to rebuke you again. {10} Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, yet my unfailing love for you will not be shaken nor my covenant of peace be removed," says the LORD, who has compassion on you. {11} "O afflicted city, lashed by storms and not comforted, I will build you with stones of turquoise, your foundations with sapphires. {12} I will make your battlements of rubies, your gates of sparkling jewels, and all your walls of precious stones. {13} All your sons will be taught by the LORD, and great will be your children's peace.

It's clear that God is talking to Israel. God is talking about a time that's still in our future.
 

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ENOUGH WITH THE NAME CALLING OR I'LL CLOSE THE DAMN THREAD.

Does anyone know how many christian religions there are, because I sure don't. I wouldn't even want to try to count the different Baptists. Even within the same congregation people disagree about religion.

You are not going to change their opinion and they are not going to change yours, deal with it.
 

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There is only one true religion. Just ask any Christian. Ask anyone who believes in any religion. They will tell you in an instant their religion is the only true religion.
 
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