White Privilege Conference (WPC) wanting to keep the press out for obvious reasons

WPC organizers reacted very poorly to the discovery that this year’s conference was being reported on from inside. This is unsurprising, since WPC has attempted to totally ban reporters from covering its proceedings and has actively kept them out in the past.

It must not surprise you why it was kept secretly for the press the previous years. When you look at the debates it is clear we should seriously pose several questions by the speakers invited and by the set up of that conference.

Today there is a renewed attack (in the Western world) on anything to do with believing there is a God, a Creator of any kind!

There are even people who hold conferences to make it clear to others that almost every dysfunction in society, from racism and sexism to global warming and a weak economy, is united by the ideology of ‘Christian hegemony.’ That is at least what a lecturer at the 2016 White Privilege Conference (WPC) claimed.

Believers are again open to ridicule. Academics, who are confident they have the answer (or at least acceptable opinions) to everything about how the world began, compete among themselves for the “glory” they can receive from each other and from the public with their notions. Some also want others to believe that all more active believers would be creationists and do not seem to get the difference of believing that there has been a Most High Supreme being ordering everything  and being responsible for the creation.

Contingency, Hegemony, Universality

Contingency, Hegemony, Universality (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Certain people, like Paul Kivel, think Christians “colonize our mind.”
Paul Kivel, is a social justice educator, activist, and writer, who to our mind looks not so social at all but is perhaps an atheist socialist against religion and willing to attack it. Though he claims to be an innovative leader in violence prevention for 35 years, it either looks like he has changed gear or has always loved to set up non-believers against believing people .

He defines Christian hegemony as the

everyday, pervasive, and systematic set of Christian values and beliefs, individuals and institutions that dominate all aspects of our society through the social, political, economic, and cultural power they wield. Nothing is unaffected by Christian hegemony (whether we are Christian or not) including our personal beliefs and values, our relationships to other people and to the natural environment, and our economic, political, education, health care, criminal/legal, housing, and other social systems. {Christian hegemony}

For him

All people who are not Christian, as well as most people who are, experience social, political, and economic exploitation, violence, cultural appropriation, marginalization, alienation and constant vulnerability from the dominance of Christian power and values in our society. {Christian hegemony}

It looks like Christendom and/or Christianity (though he constantly refers to Christianity) is/are the badness of this world.

The internalization of dominant western Christian beliefs and values by individuals in our society seems to bring all badness into the world and being the cause of the present problems we have with fundamental Muslims. but it seems also to be in participial white Christian men who are dominating this world and causing inequality and injustice.

He writes

Another level of Christian dominance is within the power elite, the network of 7-10,000 predominantly white Christian men who control the largest and most powerful social, political, economic, and cultural institutions in the country. And finally there is the level which provides the foundation for all the others – the long and deep legacy of Christian ideas, values, practices, policies, icons, and texts that have been produced within dominant western Christianity over the centuries. That legacy continues to shape our language, culture, beliefs, and values and to frame public and foreign policy decisions. {Christian hegemony}

He even wants us tot believe, that we believers are blind. It is true that we cannot go without all those companies and organisations which have their say in our communities and that economical as well as political parties want to have everything in their hands. But we think it over the top, him saying

Christian dominance has become so invisible that its manifestations appear to be secular, i.e. not religious. In this context, the phrase “secular Christian dominance” might be most appropriate, Christian hegemony under the guise of secularism. Of course, there are many forms of Christian fundamentalism which are anything but secular. Often fundamentalists want to create some kind of theocratic state. But the more mainstream, everyday way that dominant Christian values and institutions influence our lives and communities is less evident, although no less significant and certainly not limited to fundamentalists. {Christian hegemony}

According to him Christian leaders have established an annual holiday cycle that extols US militarism/ triumphalism, the nuclear family, consumerism and whiteness. Perhaps he is so much focussed on the U.S.A. that he does not see the holidays of other countries and mistakenly takes many heathen holidays as Christian holidays, though it mostly are also the heathen people who celebrate those and try to lure Christians to celebrate with them.

The holiday cycle which he presents on his website present many secular holidays which he presents as so called holidays of Christianity though Christianity argues a lot against the celebration of those feasts. But we do agree in Christendom we see many people with the name Christian celebrating those heathen festivals as so called Christian holidays.

English: Painting of Christopher Columbus. The...

Painting of Christopher Columbus. The painting Virgen de los Navegantes (in the Sala de los Almirantes, Royal Alcazar, Seville). A painting by Alejo Fernández between 1505 and 1536. It is the only state sponsored portrait of the First Admiral of the Indias called Don Cristoval Colon known today as Christopher Columbus in English. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For him those holidays downplays the violence in our history, holding up a few white Christian men, such as Christopher Columbus and his American presidents,

for uncritical praise and emphasizes faith, family and country.

he writes and continues:

For many in the US, this cycle has come to seem traditional, even though it is constantly recreated and most of the holidays originated within the last 150 years. For some, these holidays have come to feel familiar, unifying and just plain American even though for millions of others they can be painful and alienating. Most of our national holidays are seen as secular, even though their underpinnings are deeply Christian. Even Christmas and Easter are viewed as secular by many. (I have been told that the phrase Merry Christmas in bold letters on the public buses in my
city is not religious but merely a general holiday greeting.)

It looks like he does not know that Jesus was not at all born on the 25th of December and that all the traditions people flirt with have nothing to do at all with the birth of Christ nor with God, and are an abomination in the eyes of God, of which a real Christian should abstain.

That New Year’s day for Muslims, Jews, Hindus, Chinese, Vietnamese, Mayans and many Native peoples happens at other times of the annual cycle, has nothing to do with Christianity not with Christendom but with choosing an other calendar system.

The fact that western countries imposed this calendar worldwide, even though those in the West are a minority in the world, is never acknowledged.

he writes, but we do think that is a matter of choosing a time indication where the West has chosen to keep to that Gregorian calendar, even after some countries tried the Napoleonic calendar for some time, but whatever calendar they would choose always there would be people able to complain about the system chosen.

We do not see any reason at all why not to say “Happy Chinese New Year” or “Happy Jewish New Year”, like we do in the West of Europe? He should know that these other calendars are also culturally specific and that everybody is free to follow one or the other and that nobody would mind you saying “Happy New Year” when it is a new year for that person.
For us this article is written on the 12th of Nisan, 5776 but in the West most people would not know about which day we are talking therefore we also use the common general practised calendar indicating that it is today April the 20th of the year 2016 of the common Era (CE). For us on 22 April (Taanit Bechorot) Friday night we are looking at the 14th of Nisan, 5776 going to celebrate the Passover, the “Feast of Unleavened Bread” Erev Pesach and on the 23rd the 15th of Nisan, 5776 we look at the holiday yomtov, being part of the “Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread”or “Pesach I”, having on Sunday the 1st day of the Omer (or Pesach II) the period between Passover and Shavuʿot, the 16th of Nisan of the year 5776. {The holiday of Pesach, or Passover, is an annual week long festival commemorating the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt and slavery. Before the main festival begins for the Jews, the Christians remember the night that Jesus came together with his apostles for the Last Supper and announcement of the installation of the New Covenant. for us this 14 th of Nisan is the most important day of the year and precedes the Pesach festival which begins on the 15th day of the Hebrew calendar month of Nisan — which derives its name from the passing over of the homes of the Israelite slaves during the tenth plague. It is that liberation and the liberation by Christ that we should remember for ever.} Next year the Passover shall be on Monday, April 10 and in 2018 on Friday, March 30.
But this is all about arrangements and agreements and depending on which calendar you want to base your daily activities.

For economical and practical reasons an agreement has to be made to use what calendar and what to consider the first day of the week: Thursday (certain Hindus), Friday (like Muslims), Friday night – Saturday night or Sabbath (like the Jews), or the week beginning on Sunday or Monday, as such beginning the day at 00.00 hours or when the sun gets down. Here you may find calendars beginning the week with Sunday and others ending with the weekend (which I personally find more practical).
It is true that

holidays can be destructive when they celebrate war or colonialism, are promoted aggressively or when corporations use them to promote values hostile to our environment and us. {The Christian Holiday Cycle}

For sure we need to think seriously about what we celebrate and why, who is included or excluded in the celebration and what values are implicitly or explicitly communicated. But we never should condemn certain groups of people if they want to celebrate certain days, though it is our duty to point out to Christians what they are celebrating and which festivals are alright to take part in and which not.

For Kivel the choice of calendar use and the days celebrated shows the dominance of a certain group and the normalization of such a group.

It is said that WPC takes tremendous pains to protect everybody’s feelings, but this year many toes were stepped on. To ensure a gender non-conforming person isn’t labeled with a wayward “he,” attendees are asked to always introduce themselves with their name and their pronoun set. Presenters routinely ask for anybody to pipe up if they’re triggered by a presentation, and will apologize if such a complaint arises. Almost half the conference revolves around microaggressions and how to avoid them or defuse them.

A major part of WPC are the daily caucuses, where attendees segregate themselves by race and talk through their feelings on white privilege. They were assembled collectively beforehand and assigned to a specific smaller room ‘because of the large number of white people in attendance’. Organizers warned they could start physically exerting their white privilege by walking too aggressively and not paying heed to their surroundings. If attendees weren’t careful, they said, they risked getting in the way of non-white attendees who would have no choice but to shy away and debase themselves before these barreling vectors of overwhelming privilege.

Disaffected participants in the 2016 White Privilege Conference (WPC) have taken to Twitter to complain that the conference was, ironically, too white and was actually filled to the brim with white supremacy. Adopting the hashtag #WPCSoWhite, inspired by the recent #OscarsSoWhite campaign, Twitter users claimed the conference that was supposed to battle white privilege instead served to entrench it. The tag appears to have been started and pushed with particular vigour by Aeriel Ashlee, an education consultant who attended WPC and objected to several parts of a keynote address delivered by (white) historian James Loewen. Some of his comments where even described as “deeply offensive and traumatizing.”

More than 700 Barbie dolls are displayed during an exhibition which takes place from March 10 to September 18, 2016.       (MATTHIEU ALEXANDRE/AFP/Getty Images)Frederick Gooding, Jr., who styles himself as “The Race Doctor” gave a half-comedic, half-serious lecture intended to point out various moments of subtle white supremacy and white privilege throughout the past year. Near the end of his address, Gooding went after Hollywood for the recently-released film “Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice,” which features three Caucasian heroes in the form of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman.

“I have a quota where it’s just a little too much whiteness, I gotta tap out,”

the Doctor said to a laughing audience.

“One white hero at a time, I can kinda take that, but you have two of them … but then, the White Man said, we gonna show you something. And they throw in a white woman!”

For people discussing other folks it may not be easy today how to call them. All sorts of new terms have to be looked for to talk about people with an other skin colour or with an other faith. In this time of many fleeing from the Middle East and from Africa for discussing different terms are looked for, and one term which could be right at one time a few weeks later may be considered totally wrong to be used.  Undocumented immigrants may still be called “illegals” despite the fact that this also could be a highly inaccurate and pejorative term.  Whether intentional or accidental, the use of such terms has shaped public opinion on immigration policy.  Of course, not everyone who uses these terms intends to colour undocumented immigrants with the stigma that these terms carry with them.  Today the phrase “illegal immigrant” is by many considered

decidedly not okay

During a workshop titled “Nativism 101,” on the topic of immigration and the groups opposed to it, one attendee objected to another’s use of the term “undocumented immigrant.”

Instead of illegal or undocumented, the woman proposed that such immigrants be labeled

“unauthorized immigrants.”

Unauthorised where those who brought out photographs and texts from this conference where very high income prizes where charged, as if the poor people and immigrants ever would be able to pay such fees.

Dividing the people in categories for the debates Kivel finds it are the Christians who divide people and put them in hierarchical order. For him it is in-acceptable that there would be a

“God over people, men over women, parents over children, white people over people of colour,”

inevitably creating systems that justify and even glorify oppression, but was he and the organisers not doing just that?

 

Please do read also:

  1. The 17th annual White Privilege Conference a militantly Christophobic conference held in Philadelphia
  2. White Privilege Conference Attendees Complain Conference Is Too White
  3. White Privilege Conference: Almost Everything Bad Is Tied To Christianity
  4. 7 Things That Offended People At The White Privilege Conference

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Can a scientist believe in God

Once again some debates about science, beginning of the universe, evolution and who can believe in what, is being going on in several heated debates.

English: A composed satellite photograph of No...

A composed satellite photograph of North America in orthographic projection. The observer is centered at (40° N, 95° W), at Moon distance above the Earth. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Lots of North Americans seem to have a lot of difficulties with the way people want to look at the creation. For many of them it seems impossible to take the creation as having taken part in different phases others than a day of 24 hours. They seem to forget that God has a total different measuring than our present time system.

In the United States of America many science professors say they do not think it is possible that a scientist believes in God. In other countries we can find scientist who were atheist but by their scientific findings  and getting to see what was written in the Bible did come to the Christian Faith.

, American religious figure.

Billy Graham, American religious figure. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Billy Graham in care of Billy Graham Evangelistic Association wrote about this question:

Over the years I’ve met many outstanding scientists who not only believed in God, but were also dedicated followers of Christ. Many, in fact, told me that they’d first become believers because of their scientific studies.

Why was this? One reason, they said, was because they came to see that it was more logical to believe in God than not believe in Him. No matter where you look — through the most powerful telescope or the strongest microscope — the complexity and the beauty of the universe point to an all-powerful Creator. In other words, believing that the universe “just happened” takes far more faith than believing in God! The Bible says,

“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” (Romans 1:20).

But my scientist friends also realized that science has its limits. Science can describe what the world is like, but it can’t answer the questions of why we’re here or where we’re going when we die. Only God can give us the answer to these spiritual questions, and He has answered them through Jesus Christ.

Don’t be put off by the unbelief of others. Instead, turn to Jesus Christ and open your heart and mind to His truth as it is revealed in the Bible.

…. Only in Christ, the Bible says,

“are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge” (Colossians 2:3).

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Additional literature:

  1. The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (1)
  2. The mythical conflict of science and Scripture (2)
  3. Science and the Bible—Do They Really Contradict Each Other?
  4. Are people allowed to have doubts
  5. Science, scepticism, doubts and beliefs
  6. Science, belief, denial and visibility 1
  7. Science, belief, denial and visibility 2
  8. Ian Barbour connecting science and religion
  9. Are Science and the Bible Compatible?
  10. Reconciling Science and Religion
  11. Science and God’s existence
  12. People Seeking for God 1 Looking for answers
  13. Challenging claim 2 Inspired by God 1 Simple words
  14. Challenging claim 4 Inspired by God 3 Self-consistent Word of God
  15. Interpretation of archaeological data
  16. Bible and Science: Scientific Facts and Theories
  17. Bible and Science (2): In the Beginning
  18. Genesis 1 story does not take away an evolution
  19. Nothingness
  20. “Before” and “after” the Big Bang
  21. Cosmogony
  22. Is it “Wrong” to Believe that the Earth is a Sphere?
  23. A viewpoint on creation
  24. Suboptimal design and special creation
  25. Debating Darwin
  26. Living on the Edge
  27. Genesis Among the Creation Myths
  28. Other stories about the beginning of times
  29. Creation Creator and Creation
  30. Background to look at things
  31. Scripture about Creation and Creator Deity
  32. God, the Father, the Sole Creator of Heaven and Earth
  33. Something from nothing
  34. Means of creations
  35. Genesis 1 story does not take away an evolution
  36. The very very beginning 1 Creating Gods
  37. The very very beginning 2 The Word and words
  38. How are we sure God exists?
  39. Coming to the creation of human beings in the image of God
  40. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  41. From waste and void coming into being by God’s Word
  42. How Many Persons Created the Heavens and the Earth?
  43. Genesis 1:26 God said “Let us make”
  44. Sayings around God
  45. Attributes to God
  46. Experiencing God
  47. Incomplete without the mind of God
  48. Understanding God’s Word through His Creation -2
  49. A look at evolution from a Christadelphian perspective
  50. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 1
  51. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 2
  52. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 3
  53. Forbidden Fruit in the Midst of the Garden 4
  54. A dialogue about the earth moving and spinning around the sun
  55. Is it “Wrong” to Believe that the Earth is a Sphere? Inclusive the first generation of Christadelphians their views
  56. Ignorance of Today’s Youth (and Adults)
  57. Old Earth creationists and other conservative Christians denying any evolution
  58. Without God no purpose, no goal, no hope
  59. The professor, God, Faith and the student
  60. Book Review: Ann Gauger, Douglas Axe & Casey Luskin, Science & Human Origins. Seattle: Discovery Institute Press, 2012.124pp.
  61. An anarchistic reading of the Bible—(1) Approaching the Bible
  62. An anarchistic reading of the Bible (2)—Creation and what follows

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  • David Platt: Church Planting Is Key to Spreading the Gospel “In This Nation and to All Nations” (blackchristiannews.com)
    With over 80 percent of people on our continent now living in metropolitan areas, the need for more biblically faithful churches in key urban centers is critical.Over the last year, I have had the privilege of visiting and preaching in many of the “Send” cities designated by the North American Mission Board. As I have interacted with church planting and revitalization teams, I have been deeply encouraged to see and hear about all the avenues God is blessing for the spread of the Gospel in North America.The rapidly shifting moral landscape of our culture, combined with the sobering reality that many of the most influential cities in North America are filled with lost people — yet are home to very few churches — beckons us to do more together to reach these cities.

    God’s primary instrument for the spread of the Gospel here and around the world is the local church. We know from the New Testament that Christ is building His church and that the gates of hell will not prevail against it (Matthew 16:18).

  • No Big Bang? Quantum equation predicts universe has no beginning (basedheisenberg.tumblr.com)
    The universe may have existed forever, according to a new model that applies quantum correction terms to complement Einstein’s theory of general relativity. The model may also account for dark matter and dark energy, resolving multiple problems at once.
  • How we read the Bible (standupforthetruth.com)
    Sanctification is a long process, and sometimes we can lose patience with one another. What is the biblical way to contend for the faith?
  • Abraham Kuyper: God Crowns Creation With Humanity (stream.org)
    Read the article “Abraham Kuyper: God Crowns Creation With Humanity” here: http://blog.acton.org/archives/76377-kuyper-god-crowns-creation-with-humanity.html
  • Being a creationist conservative in Canada ‘gives your opponents a tremendous amount of ammunition’ (themoderatevoice.com)
    Alberta premier Jim Prentice’s hand-picked education minister Gordon Dirks told forum attendees last weekend that he was an “Old Earth guy” – a reference to a doctrine of Creationism that generally rejects biological evolution.Mr. Dirks has declined to clarify his views. He’s also declined to comment on whether or not he accepts the scientifically accepted understanding of evolution when asked directly by the Post.
  • Subcrustal ocean roof found? – National creationism | Examiner.com (servehiminthewaiting.com)
    This team could have found the roof of a now-drained subcrustal ocean. That same ocean, he says, broke confinement about fifty-three hundred years ago. We know that break-out as the Global Flood.
  • Gallup: U.S. Population Highly Militaristic (stateofglobe.com)
    “Which country do you think is the greatest threat to peace in the world today?” the overwhelming winner had been the United States of America.
  • Old Earth creationists and other conservative Christians denying any evolution (christadelphianworld.blogspot.com)
    conservative Christians gained terrain and could blown up the whole evolution thing in a ridiculous way. A big problem with the creationists is that they all undermine the normal Christian thinking and Christian concept of creation and the relationship of man versus the creation.

Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth

Accusations

The previous weeks we got very strong reactions at certain things we said about God and His son on the net and on our replies to certain writings on the net about Jesus, God and the Christadelphians.

Title page to the ASV

Title page to the ASV (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On several websites we where accused of being a sect and of being God haters and/or Jesus haters. When we tried to give a polite answer with what we could find in the Bible and how we funded our believes on the Holy Scriptures we were silenced and did not get an opportunity to show where our believes came from and why they are not so stupid.

The bad language send to us, plus other negative elements like viruses and Trojan horses, made us not afraid to find other ways of giving a reply or showing people what we think, why we think it and why there is reason not to consider Christadelphians being a sect or cult.

Apostolic times and Jesus’ definition of God

At the beginning of the apostolic times the followers of Christ Jesus were considered to be a Jewish sect. Their faith was based on the classic traditional monotheist faith of the People of God, the People of Israel, the Jews. Jesus coming from an Essene, and therefore a very traditional devout Jewish family, grew up in a family where they believed in Only One God. Jesus also worshipped the God of Abraham, which was considered by the Jews the Only One True God.

The Christadelphians do have the same faith as the Jews, in the Only One True God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, the God of Jacob. Jesus was in perfect agreement with a Jewish scribe, as together they discussed the greatest of all questions we humans must face. Who is God?
So prepare now to hear what Jesus commands us in terms of our definition of God.

In the New testament we do find:

“24 Jesus said unto them, Is it not for this cause that ye err, that ye know not the scriptures, nor the power of God? 25 For when they shall rise from the dead, they neither marry, nor are given in marriage; but are as angels in heaven. 26 But as touching the dead, that they are raised; have ye not read in the book of Moses, in [the place concerning] the Bush, how God spake unto him, saying, {1} I [am] the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob? {1) Ex 3:6} 27 He is not the God of the dead, but of the living: ye do greatly err.

28  And one of the scribes came, and heard them questioning together, and knowing that he had answered them well, asked him, What commandment is the first of all? 29 Jesus answered, The first is, {1} Hear, O Israel; {2} The Lord our God, the Lord is one: {1) De 6:4 ff 2) Or [The Lord is our God; the Lord is one]} 30 and thou shalt love the Lord thy God {1} with all thy heart, and {1} with all thy soul, and {1} with all thy mind, and {1} with all thy strength. {1) Gr [from]} 31 The second is this, {1} Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. {1) Le 19:18} 32 And the scribe said unto him, Of a truth, Teacher, thou hast well said that he is one; and there is none other but he:” (Mark 12:24-32 ASV)

God being the One Who is One

Excerpt of the book of Exodus from the The Gre...

Excerpt of the book of Exodus from the The Great Bible (entitled The Byble in Englyshe), publ. 1540. The English form Iehovah (Jehovah as the “J” stands for both I and the later J) is used for the Tetragrammaton at Exodus 6:3. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Clearly for Jesus the Most High Elohim Creator deity is only One as is also written in the Book Deuteronomy of the Old Testament

“Hear, O Israel: {1} Jehovah our God is one Jehovah: {1) Or [Jehovah our God, Jehovah is one]; Or [Jehovah is our God, Jehovah is one]; Or [Jehovah is our God, Jehovah alone]}” (Deuteronomy 6:4 ASV)
For Jeshua or Jesus Jehovah is his God and is only one, not two or three.
Jesus also added we should love that One God with all our heart.

“And he said unto him, {1} Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. {1) De 6:5}” (Matthew 22:37 ASV)“And he answering said, {1} Thou shalt love the Lord thy God {2} with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; {3} and thy neighbor as thyself. {1) De 6:5. 2) Gr [from] 3) Le 19:18}” (Luke 10:27 ASV)

We as Christadelphians do love God and do love His creation. They want to open their heart to all people and not only just to some who belong to the same denomination as they. We also want to give attention to other minded persons and do respect them for what they think and feel. This cannot be said about those who call themselves Christians and attack us.

Jewish unitarian creed and Jesus’ creed

As we can find in the New Testament Jesus stated that God is a single Lord. He uttered the Jewish unitarian creed and made it the pinnacle of good Christian understanding and practice.

What else can we say about this One God of Jesus’ creed?

He could not possibly be the triune God of traditional Christendom. Jesus is on record as recognizing no god but the God of his Jewish heritage based on the Scriptures preserved as God’s oracles. That God was never the Trinity. Jesus was not a Trinitarian, on the plainest evidence of his testimony in Mark 12:28-34. He himself never claimed to be God and knew very well he could not do anything without his Father in heaven.

“Jesus therefore answered and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing: for what things soever he doeth, these the Son also doeth in like manner.” (John 5:19 ASV)

“I can of myself do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is righteous; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 5:30 ASV)

God’s Will and Jesus’ will

In case Jesus is God Jesus would do his own will by doing the Will of God and nothing would be to difficult for him. But Jesus clearly tells us he was placed on this earth not to do his will but the Will of the One Who had sent Jesus and was not him but God. Jesus also submitted himself totally to the Will of God.

 “For I am come down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 6:38 ASV)

“Jesus therefore said, When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that {1} I am [he], and [that] I do nothing of myself, but as the Father taught me, I speak these things. {1) Or [I am] he: [and I do]}” (John 8:28 ASV)

Jesus also not speaks out of himself but brings the Word of the one Who sent him and Who commands him. We believe those words written in the scriptures which tell us about Jesus his position.

 “For I spake not from myself; but the Father that sent me, he hath given me a commandment, what I should say, and what I should speak.” (John 12:49 ASV)

“Believest thou not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? the words that I say unto you I speak not from myself: but the Father abiding in me doeth his works.” (John 14:10 ASV)

God’s call to be seekers and lovers of truth

God calls us to be lovers of truth and seekers of truth. Jesus let his followers know that they should search those Scriptures and belief the Words of God.

We would not like it to see our heart hardened like the one of the Pharaoh of Egypt, him refusing to believe God’s agents, Moses and Aaron. The same we would not like our ears to be deaf like the ones of the sons of the prophet Eli to be deaf to Eli’s words of warning so that they did not repent of their sin and turn back to God (1 Samuel. 2:22-25).

For  us it is most important, not to follow human doctrines and as such pleasing man, but following the teachings of Jesus Christ continuing in God’s truth, continuously willing to seek truth and to endure sound doctrine, which is provided in the Holy Scriptures.

Sound doctrine

We do believe God will guide us by His Word and by the teachers he allows us to find, who will encourage us in sound doctrine and not in a teaching according our own, or the majority of man’s own desires, even when they claim to be the majority and therefore being the right ones. It is  not because they belong to the most numerous denomination in Christendom, which are the Roman Catholics, that all others are the wrong ones, not keeping to the main rules and being sects.

We are convinced that anyone, including believers, pastors, church leaders and Bible scholars, can be deluded in some area of their understanding, if they are not always “lovers of the truth,” if they are not always open to criticism, to other perspectives and scholarship which may give new insights and even improve our Bible translations, which in turn may lead to the need to discard some of our pet doctrines or practices.

In fact, we can see a God-sent delusion that has infected much of the Christian Church for many of the last 1900 years in a number of very significant areas of faith and practice! We may wonder if  the traditional Christian Church may not be blind to significant portions of God’s clear truth. for sure we can see lots of Christians who refuse to try to read the Bible without their known doctrine of the Trinity. Are they afraid that in case they would try to leave that doctrine away for a moment, they would loose track?

Why is it that sincere and earnest pastors seem happy to rest in their beliefs that were perhaps ingrained from Bible college or from their time in the pews? Why do so many pastors seem unwilling to read widely, to read honest critiques from Bible scholars, to read the criticisms of their opponents, to be challenged by and confront the beliefs of such ideologies as Catholicism, replacement theology, prosperity religion, materialism, paganism, and Islam, etc?

Insecurity, fear opposite confidence

Is it not best to wonder why people are afraid to put their Trinity doctrine for a moment at the site to read what is really written there black on white in the Book of books. Are they so insecure or fearful to do the test of sound reasoning? Or is it a form of  cowardice or fear or insecurity that prevents many from being earnest and zealous seekers after truth?

Yet are we not all cowards by nature? Are we not all fearful of standing against the tide of this world — standing against the crowd when they practice evil?

When Paul was in prison he was encouraged that many of his fellow believers gained confidence in their stand for the truth of the Gospel.

“Most of the brethren, trusting in the Lord because of my imprisonment, have far more courage to speak the word of God without fear” (Philipeans 1:14).

Each of us has different opportunities to play our part in the teaching of truth. The Church exists mainly to teach the Gospel of the Kingdom of God, and we take to heart Jesus’ warning that we must never be ashamed of him and his Gospel (Mark 8:38).
It is each of us individually and not our pastor or church leader who will stand before the Messiah, the righteous Judge, and have our heart searched on these matters.

Which leader to follow

Christadelphians do not have one specific worldly leader or organisation which we all have to follow. We do not have to be obedient to an overall organisation or church institution. By us no specific gifts or tenths (teeting) obligated. So how can it be certain people accuse us of being a sect, where this are all elements particular to sects.

Jesus in the Gospels

Jesus in the Gospels (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Christadelphians do not follow someone here on earth, but do follow Jesus Christ, who, according to the Holy Scriptures is now seated at the right hand of his heavenly Father to be a mediator between God and man.

We do believe each individual is himself or herself responsible and shall have to be answerable before the judge Jesus Christ on his return, which he even did not know when it would be, though God knows everything.

It is therefore you and I who need to be sure regarding where we stand before God for our own peace of mind and salvation. We ourselves have to make our own choice who to follow, Jesus or those who claim to be the traditional church.

Task to help others

But we also have received the task to help others and to “Rescue those being led away to death” (Proverbs 24:10-12) Therefore we may encounter lots of discouragement but we must continue and may not falter in times of trouble. We should not fear man but more fear God and count on the strength He is willing to give us.

I think perhaps in this issue of God we have to be careful to pay close attention to the unitarian statements of Jesus.

“You, Father, are the only one who is truly God” (17:3).

Is that statement unacceptable?
Does it not obviously tell us that no one else is the true God?

Jesus also tells us that he is the Way to God and we should follow him so that he can lead us through the small gate of the Kingdom of God.

Clearly Jesus being the Way to God and to life, we should focus on him, not as being the God, but as being the Way to God and being part of the Plan of God.

Once we say that Jesus is God we are counting two Gods — and that contradicts the Shema which Jesus says is the most important commandment (Mark 12:29).

Jesus learned everything from God as he grew up in wisdom and stature. If he were God he would have nothing to learn! God also tells us that He does not tell lies, is an eternal Spirit Who cannot seen by man or they would fall death, and that he cannot be tempted. Jesus was seen by many who did not fall death. Jesus also was tempted more than once. God Who knows everything and does not tell lies would not have told the truth when He is Jesus, and was been asked when he would come back and who would be seated next to him. Jesus told his disciples he did not know that and that only his Father knows that. God obviously cannot die. Jesus did die. The Son of God died. This is one of the special elements of our faith or a core element of the Christian faith.

All those facets we should tell others and help them to see what is written in the Bible about Jesus and the Plan of God.

Having no opportunity to explain this and to go deeper into detail, we were confronted with that censorship and saw the necessity to explain this more to the general public.

Therefore we started looking for an other means to show how Christadelphians next to the Word of God put their focus on that Nazarene man Jesus Christ, who we believe to be our saviour and example to follow.

Spokesmen for Jesus

Looking on the internet for means to help others to come to see who Jesus really is and what is really written in the Bible, we tried out some blogging systems.

As such we created:

C4A: Christ for all a site to show the reasons why to love Jesus.

C4U:Christ for you and Christadelphians for you, an other site to site of Brothers and Sisters in Christ, who love the Creator and His creations, to show which way we do have to go and whom to follow.

Both do have some negative points and made us not satisfied. Therefore we went back to a well known source. Once more we decided to go for WordPress and created last but not least the site with the focus all on Jesus Christ our Messiah, a “Messiah for all“.

We invite you to come and have a look at those site and to give your impression, so that we can work on it and improve.

We do hope we can show the world why we need to follow Jesus Christ of Nazareth and how Christadelphians do that, and as such should also been seen as true followers of Christ or real Christians and not as a sect or cult because they do not follow any human worldly leader nor institution of this world.

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Please do find additional to read:

  1. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  2. Background to look at things
  3. Synagogue, Church or Ecclesia for the Christian
  4. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  5. United people under Christ
  6. Disciple of Christ counting lives and friends dear to them
  7. A participation in the body of Christ
  8. Who are the Christadelphians
  9. Christadelphian people
  10. Our Christadelphian faith
  11. What Christadelphians believe
  12. Our Creed and Practice
  13. About Brothers in Christ
  14. What are Brothers in Christ
  15. Often asked questions: faq – English
  16. What Christadelphians teach
  17. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  18. A small company of Jesus’ footstep follower
  19. Evangelisation, local preaching opposite overseas evangelism
  20. Those who love Jesus
  21. The Law of Christ: Law of Love
  22. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  23. Agape, a love to share with others from the Fruit of the Spirit
  24. The task given to us to love each other
  25. Christianity is a love affair
  26. The Greatest of These is Love
  27. Unarmed truth and unconditional love
  28. Unconditional love
  29. Compassion and Discipline
  30. Character transformed by the influence of our fellowships
  31. Integrity of the fellowship
  32. Fellowship
  33. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom

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  • Rule and Reign (activeinspiration.wordpress.com)
    As reported in the news these days we hear Christians are persecuted at all time highs. Maybe its because perfect love from God our Father that we share with the world is seen as weakness to the world of nonbelievers.
  • Stand Tall In Faith (mylordmyfriend.com)
    Jesus answered Peters confession, “That Jesus is the Christ, and the Son of The living God”Matthew 16 verse 16: Jesus declares that upon that Confession, the He is The Christ, He will build His Church.That is the concrete slab of faith, what Jesus came to do and what He did through the Cross. One of the statements of faith, that was established, by the forefathers, to counteract, heresies and mysticism which tried to wrongly attach themselves to the Truth, about Christ Jesus was.
  • Charles Spurgeon (rulookingforjesus.wordpress.com)
    It is a sweet thought that Jesus Christ did not come forth without his Father’s permission, authority, consent, and assistance. He was sent of the Father, that he might be the Saviour of men.
  • Feast of the Presentation of Jesus in the Temple (emmanuelchatham.typepad.com)
    Almighty and everliving God, we humbly pray that, as your only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple, so we may be presented to you with pure and clean hearts by Jesus Christ our Lord; who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
  • Scripture of the Day, 2/5 (sowegalive.com)
    And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. He who has the Son has life; he who does not have the Son of God does not have life.
  • Daily prayer (0: have a free day (0: (hmweimar.wordpress.com)
    Lord- thank you for always giving us a way to salvation and peace. Thank you for the grace you cover our lives with and thank you Lord God for your son. In his holy name amen
    Believe and make it so
  • Monday, 26 January 2015 : 3rd Week of Ordinary Time, Memorial of St. Timothy and St. Titus, Bishops (First Reading) (petercanisiusmichaeldavidkang.com)
    I invite you to fan into a flame the gift of God you received through the laying on of my hands. For God did not confer on us a spirit of bashfulness, but of strength, love and good judgment. Do not be ashamed of testifying to our Lord, nor of seeing me in chains. On the contrary, do your share in labouring for the Gospel with the strength of God.
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    From Paul, servant of God, Apostle of Christ Jesus, at the service of God’s chosen people, so that they may believe and reach the knowledge of truth and godliness. The eternal life we are waiting for was promised from the very beginning by God who never lies, and as the appointed time had come, He made it known through the message entrusted to me by a command of God, our Saviour.

Is God behind all suffering here on earth

At Bijbelvorsers, vereniging voor Bijbelstudie – Bible Scholars, Association for Bible study on June 29, 2011 at 9:42 am was written by Bible scholar Marcus Ampe. Until 2014, December 22 it got 400 viewings

Often we do find people saying it is a vengeance of God when people suffer. By earthquakes, tsunamis and other disasters they like to warn people that it is a penalty from God and that they should change their way of life.

The central character of the Book of Job, Job (Arabic: أيّوب, Ayyūb‎), as portrayed by Bonnat

In the ancient Hebrew writing The Book of Job we can find a story of the suffering Job and the attempted explanation of these events by his friends. But at the end we also do get to know God’s answer. This is so much different from what lots of people do want us to believe.

In some Christian denomination the preachers even do focus on the terror. They proclaim that it is God who punishes the evil doers. And because the people do such wrong they and their environment has to undergo all the suffering.

If that was not enough they even tell those people that after all the suffering on this earth it shall not be finished. God shall punish them even more. (That is what they tell them.) Those preachers say that those evildoers are going to be tortured for ever after they die. They present them a picture of a hell, which is going to be a torture room full of fire for all those people who sinned veraciously. They want to give the others, who did some little sins, some hope, and present that they also have to face some extra punishment, but that will only happen for a short time in the purgatory.

But as you shall see when you read the Book of Books,  the Bible, you shall be able to come to the conclusion that this is not the truth they are telling. They do the same thing as the friends of Job and try to mislead the people who have trust in them.

In the world around us we are able to find believers and non-believers. People who do good and people who do wrong. Those who do bad things have mostly the opportunity to be confronted with more problems than those who do good. But do not make the mistake, that the ones who do good shall have it always good. No, also they can become confronted with a lot of badness and have to suffer a lot. Their doing good is no free way to have a life without problems.

Perhaps you think it being righteous that everything goes well with such people who do good. But you’ll notice that the world does not turn like that. Everywhere you look you shall be able to find good an bad things.

Throughout the history of humankind we found a lot of troubles coming over people who had nothing to do with it. Wars seem to be insurmountable. History books have pages over battles between different people. Those battles brought a lot of pain to many people. But it are not only such big events which can bring pain to humans or animals. Even the flora world came and still comes into problems many times

Job's Evil Dreams (illustration)

Job’s Evil Dreams (illustration) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

In the Book of Books, the Bible, we can find a Guide Book to Life and a Guide to our Suffering. Each of those Books in that Library can give us the the power to change. We can find the history of humankind but especially also the history of the chosen people, who wanted to stay under the wings of their Creator, the Only One God.

It is normal that when we live that we wonder what on earth we are doing here. It is not so weird to question the reason of us being here and to think about what we have to do or to think about what is expected and by whom here on earth.
Would there be a reason to be here, and to go through all those problems to grow up, to get a job, a way of living, etcetera.

Do you know there is a Higher Being who took care that we can find the answers to many life questions? His Words are written down by patient scriptors who opened up a world of knowledge which had first to be brought over verbally, then written on tablets, later scrolls and at last found a better way to got multiplied so that They could become available to as many interested persons as possible. Thanks to Gutenberg and many Biblestudents the Words of God became spread over the whole world and were put against the human teachings of several persons and institutions which proclaimed being spokesmen of God.

But be careful, as you shall be able to see in the book of Job, those so called friends can bring misleading messages and even can tell you things which are not according the Truth. Therefore we always have to listen carefully but also look at their sayings and compare them with other sayings or with reactions on their words.

Also in the book of Job we get to hear at first many things about God, which seem to be very acceptable. Some denominations use those words of the friends quite often to tell their story of the picture. But they forget to bring into attention the lost chapter of that Book, when God gives His reply to Job and his three friends. For some people that chapter does not give them the satisfying answers, but their at least we get the real answer from God who we do have to believe.

The bible is full of examples of difficulties people had to encounter. But the Book of Job is in a certain special, because it treats the subject of Suffering in particular.

We can find a more than blessed man who had at first nothing to complain of. But at a finger click everything can change quickly. Such a wealthy man got pulled down under until he did not see any light any more. Though he considered himself as a man of God he did not see any use any more to live longer. He just wanted that his life would come to an end soon, because he had enough of all those problems.

As in the other stories of the assemblage of scriptures we can find an example of a person in need who can not be helped by his friends. We get to see that man is not always the right guide nor able to help sufficiently. Perhaps people can give us wrong advice. But we may find that there are also others who sincerely try to help us but who are also not always able to bring the right solution.

In the Holy Scriptures we do find on several places One Helper who always came back into the picture. Several people were helped by Him and it is not because we do not seem to get any answers or signs from Him this day that He would not be around us. Job also thought that God had abounded Him. Do you think at certain moments that God has left you? Do you think God would leave you on your own?

Look very carefully around you and you shall be able to see the Hand of God. He is there at places where you would not expect Him.

Today we can have the opportunity to find God His Words at our coffee-table. The only thing is that we do have to take the Book and have to open it and read it. Without reading it we are not going to get as much answers as God is willing to give to us. Also in our time of affliction He is there to guide us, but we do have to want to see His stretched out arm. Let Him carry you through the storms.

The Bible is not just a book from and for the old days. It still can be very very useful. Also today we find a lot of people who are wrongly accused of something. More and more we can find people being bullied. This often because they dare to be different or to do good. It is as if today the world does not like people who want to be goodhearted. Working hard and doing what is expected from you by the higher ones is being looked at as being week. The world today does not like to have people who want to live according to rules, morals and ethics, and they prefer to scum them.

In case we have to face problems it can be good to look at the problems of some one else like Job.

Let us be aware that everything we have to undergo in this life can be a learning experience. Even from the moments we do not like we can learn. We also can learn from suffering. The experience of the pain, having to face problems can bring us to moments to look for solutions and give us the chance to grow stronger.

I do agree than we have to make a big shift in our attitude how to look at that suffering. But we should be able to manage.

The Book of Job can be a very good teaching tool for us to make a new start or to find new ways to dope with our suffering and with all the problems which seem to be too much for us.

Therefore I would like to advice you to take that Old Book at hand and to read it. Perhaps my Bible Study I wrote on our ecclesia site can help you to go through it and to see solutions to your own situation.

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Please do find out in the Bible Study at the Christadelphian Ecclesia Brussel-Leuven.

  1. Bad things no punishment from God
  2. Profitable disasters
  3. Facing disaster fatigue
  4. Fragments from the Book of Job #1: chapters 1-12
  5. Fragments from the Book of Job #2: chapters 12-20
  6. Fragments from the Book of Job #3: chapters 21-26
  7. Fragments from the Book of Job #4: chapters 27-31
  8. Fragments from the Book of Job #5: chapters 32-37
  9. Fragments from the Book of Job #6: chapters 38-42
  10. Fragments from the Book of Job #7 Epilogue
  11. Let us recognise how great God is

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Additional reading:

  1. A world in denial
  2. Why Think There Is a God? (3): Why Is It Wrong?
  3. Philosophy hand in hand with spirituality
  4. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #15 Exposition before the Creator
  5. A risk taking society
  6. Securing risks
  7. God does not change
  8. יהוה , YHWH and Love: Four-letter words
  9. Bad things no punishment from God
  10. I Can’t Believe That … (2) God would allow children to suffer
  11. Science, belief, denial and visibility 2
  12. Fragments from the Book of Job #3: chapters 21-26
  13. Newsweek asks: How ignorant are you?
  14. We are ourselves responsible
  15. Weekly World Watch 24th – 30th Oct 2010‏
  16. Reacting to Disasters
  17. Certainty in a troubled world
  18. Tragic coach crash in the Swiss Alps
  19. If there is bitterness in the heart
  20. A great man does not lose his self-possession when he is afflicted
  21. The blessing of a broken leg
  22. Signs of the Last Days
  23. National Natural Disaster and Bible Prophecy
  24. I Only hope we find GOD again before it is too late !
  25. Just be yourself…
  26. What happens when we die?
  27. All Souls’ Day
  28. Fear and protection
  29. Bible a guide – Bijbel als gids
  30. Finish each day and be done with it

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  • The Secret Book of Job (npr.org)
    the tornado went away. Wait, wait – the things the tornado said came to pass. My harvest was bountiful. My flock stretched out like the sea. My wife, she gave me more children, 10 sons. And once again, she held her head high in the marketplace, servants trailing after her. And only I heard her sobs at night.
  • ‘The Norton Anthology of World Religions: Volume II’ (rss.nytimes.com)
    the selected Jewish writings show that contrary to some popular assumptions, religion does not offer unsustainable certainty. The biblical story of the binding of Isaac leaves us with hard questions about Abraham’s God, and later, when Moses asks this baffling deity for his name, he simply answers: “Ehyeh-Asher-Ehyeh”, which can be roughly translated: “Never mind who I am!” The Book of Job finds no answer to the problem of human suffering, and Ecclesiastes dismisses human life as “utter futility.” This bleak honesty finds its ultimate expression in Elie Wiesel’s proclamation of the death of God in Auschwitz.
  • The Norton Anthology of World Religions (3quarksdaily.com)
    At a time when religious faith is coming under intense scrutiny, “The Norton Anthology of World Religions” is presenting a documentary history of six major faiths with sufficient editorial explanation to make their major texts intelligible across the barriers of time and space. – See more at: http://www.3quarksdaily.com/3quarksdaily/2014/12/the-norton-anthology-of-world-religions.html#sthash.msely1Oh.dpuf

     

  • Leviathan wins best film award at IFFI in Goa (in.rbth.com)
    The film is a modern reworking of the biblical book of Job. It is set on a Barents Sea peninsula and tells the story of a man who struggles against a corrupt mayor who wants his piece of land. 
  • In One of William Blake’s Final Works, the Engraved Trials of an Unfortunate Soul (hyperallergic.com)
    When his younger brother died of tuberculosis in 1787, the Metropolitan Museum of Art explains, Blake “reported discovering his wholly original method of ‘relief etching’ — which creates a single, raised printing surface for both text and image — in a vision of Robert soon after his death.” This technique also meant he had total control over his books, even if it involved incredible patience, including writing backwards onto the plates for the types of dense borders that are part of the Illustrations of the Book of Job.
  • Is Atheism a Specifically Western Phenomenon? (the-american-interest.com)
    dam Garfinkle, the editor of The American Interest, asked me this question. He told me that he had met a Saudi who claimed to be an atheist: What does this mean? We know atheism in its Jewish or Christian context, as a rejection of the Biblical God. What would atheism mean in a Muslim, or Hindu, or Buddhist context?
  • Russian film Leviathan nominated for Golden Globe awards (tass.ru)
    A 2014 Russian drama film Leviathan directed by Andrey Zvyagintsev has been nominated for the Golden Globe’s Best Foreign Language Film.
  • Wrestling with the Big Questions: A Day In Job at LICC (bibleandmission.redcliffe.org)
    The book of Job speaks a compelling word of honesty and hope into the deepest and most difficult of human experiences. Job’s story of suffering and the process he goes through with his comforters and with God is just as relevant for Christians and local churches today as we wrestle with our own questions and the questions of those around us.

Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims and Muslims do not understand Christians?

A Catholic girl denouncing Christians

On WordPress can be found an article with the title: Why is it that Christians don’t understand Muslims? by a Roman Catholic convert to Islam, who now has found the need to inform others that don’t know about Islam: the true message of the religion. From what the media has to say nowadays, it’s quite a shame to see the wrong ideas people have about Islam. but this girl seems also to keep promoting the wrong ideas many do have about Christendom or Christianity.

The writer of the article has been raised in a Latin culture, which explains a lot about her previous heathen uses and pagan rituals she had in her church. She says she had never been exposed to Islam ever, and I wonder if she ever has been exposed to other forms of Christendom or strangely enough did not get to know other Christian communities which keep to the Biblical faith.

Convert to Islam

Not sharing the belief any-more

In her article it is made clear that even many who converted from Christendom (mostly Catholics) to Islam, did never undertook a search in Christianity where they could find lots of Christians who only adhere One God and do not accept a Trinity.
Most Muslims do have a misunderstanding of Christians because they only see those Trinitarian Christians and do not get enough contacts with non-trinitarian Christians. shame to find an ex-Christian not confirming to her Muslim brothers and sisters that there are many Christians who are not liked by the Trinitarian Christians, because they only want to worship One Holy God of gods, Allah, the Elohim Most High Almighty Merciful Hashem Jehovah.

Wrong picture

As such we can find many Muslims who give like many Christians a wrong picture of Christianity:  presenting that “The first point of interest is that Christians believe in a trinity.” This author, being an ex-Catholic may be raised up, like many, to believe that God is not one – all Supreme, all Knowing – but that He would be composed of three “sections” that form Him as one.  Each Christian has the Bible, which speaks clearly and can give enough inside in “Who is who”. The only matter is the persons have to investigate themselves, and that is what we do not see to happen much.

Decision of a Fatwa committee on the case of a...

Decision of a Fatwa committee on the case of a convert to Christianity: “Since he left Islam, he will be invited to revert. If he does not revert, he will be killed pertaining to rights and obligations of the Islamic law.” The fatwa outlines the same procedure and penalty for the male convert’s children, on reaching the age of puberty. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

She wrote:

A year ago I was a Catholic and I currently live in a community where everyone is mainly Catholic. Catholics, like any other Christian branch believe in a few points that blind them from the truth of Islam. This creates a shield between them and the religion.

Where I’m from you are simply a Catholic and that’s it. If you dare venture out of the religion you are automatically tagged as a betrayer and mocked upon. I saw this with some family members that have left the roman Catholic church and decided to follow other Christian churches. They were laughed at and even called fanatics.

It might well be that the one who dares “venture out of the religion” is automatically tagged as a betrayer and mocked upon, this we can find in many religions, like in Hinduism and in Islam as well, where even people have to fear for their life when they took on an other religion.

Converting to another branch of Christianity

She adds:

When you are raised into a community where everyone follows their father’s religion without questioning it’s rather difficult for people not to judge you if you convert to another branch of Christianity, like my brother did. It’s even worse when you revert to Islam.

Normally at a certain age each infant starts questioning the teachings of its parents and of its teachers. I wonder how it came to be that in the transition to adulthood this girl did not question her parents, priests and people around her about her religion and about her faith. Wwhat did she believed or wanted to believe from childhood onwards and how did she work around it?
When her brother did find an other church where he felt at ease, did he not share those ideas of that church with her sister. I presume he stayed in a trinitarian church of Christendom, and wonder how he made his decisions to change church-community.

Human instructions and teachings people follow

Instruction to examine

She herself admits she did not follow the Torah or Bible instructions, which say the same as the Quran, not to follow human (parents/teachers) instructions about ‘belief’, without examining them:

In the Qur’an it tells us:

And when it is said to them, “Follow what Allah has revealed,” they say, “Rather, we will follow that which we found our fathers doing.” Even though their fathers understood nothing, nor were they guided? (2: 170)

Allah (subhana wa’ tala) mentions those that follow their generation’s religion and ignore the truth.

and the problem is that we see that in every religion, also in Islam, where many people do not prefer to follow the Quran, but give more attention to the Hadith, a report of the teachings, deeds and sayings of the Islamic prophet Muhammad, according to traditions, and other writings by human beings. she must remember and know that the Hadith also had a profound and controversial influence on molding the commentaries (tafsir) on the Quran. As such it is common knowledge that the earliest commentary of the Quran by Muhammad ibn Jarir al-Tabari is mostly sourced from the hadith.

Islamic teachers

In Islam there is even less basics on the Quran writings than in many Christian denominations where the individual theologians are taken to be just as people who study the Bible professionally, but have not an overall everything saying power. In many Muslim groups those theological imams are given the power to say it all. Like we have different schools in Christendom, we can find also many madhhab or Islamic Schools of Law: evolution, devolution, and progress in the Islamic world. to give a few examples: Awza’i, Thawri, al-Fazarl, Malik, madrasah,Al-Ghazzali, plus having lots of writings out of the regular Quran, like: al-Risala al-qudsiyya fi qawa’id al-‘aqa’id (“The Jerusalem Epistle”), al-Arba’in fi usul al-din (“Forty Points on Islamic Orthodoxy”, al-Iqtisad fil-i’tiqad (“The Golden Mean in Belief’), Faysal al-tafriqa baynal-Islam wal-zandaqa (“The Criterion of Distinction between Islam and Clandestine Unbelief” al-Maqsad al-asna fi sharh asma’ Allah al-husna (“The Brilliant Aim of Explaining Allah’s Beautiful Names”) and Iljam al-‘awam ‘an ‘ilm al-kalam (“Saving Muslims from Scholastic Theology”).

Islam by the passing time has undergone the same dangerous introduction of human teachings which have received more attention by its followers than the original Holy Scripture, in this instance the Quran which also refers that the faithfull to God have to read the Hebrew Bible is a term that refers to the Tanakh (Jewish canon) and the Greek canon or New Testament.

Holy Scriptures should be the main Source and Guide

She continues:

Even in Muslim countries there are those that follow the religion without truly believing and being a devote Muslim.

which does not make it clear if she understands that reading the Holy Scriptures should be the main source of building up the faith. but she mention a general problem of all times that we can find in all religions people who say they are part of such a religion and who follow lots of traditional rites in that religion, but who are not real believers.

What is said in the Quran about disbelievers is also to concer for atheists, Jews, Christians as well as Muslims:

It says in the Qur’an:

Indeed, those who disbelieve – it is all the same for them whether you warn them or do not warn them – they will not believe. (2:6)

From the Bible we should know it says the same as in those older books:

“in whom the god of this {1} world hath blinded the {2} minds of the unbelieving, {3} that the {4} light of the {5} gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should not dawn [upon them]. {1) Or [age] 2) Gr [thoughts] 3) Or [that they should not see the light…image of God] 4) Gr [illumination] 5) See marginal note on 2 Co 2:12}” (2 Corinthians 4:4 ASV)

“14 Be not unequally yoked with unbelievers: for what fellowship have righteousness and iniquity? or what communion hath light with darkness? 15 And what concord hath Christ with {1} Belial? or what portion hath a believer with an unbeliever? {1) Gr [Beliar]}” (2 Corinthians 6:14-15 ASV)

“but brother goeth to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?” (1 Corinthians 6:6 ASV)

“Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to the unbelieving: but prophesying [is for a sign], not to the unbelieving, but to them that believe.” (1 Corinthians 14:22 ASV)

“And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages teaching.” (Mark 6:6 ASV)

“yet, looking unto the promise of God, he wavered not through unbelief, but waxed strong through faith, giving glory to God,” (Romans 4:20 ASV)

“Well; by their unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by thy faith. Be not highminded, but fear:” (Romans 11:20 ASV)

“And we see that they were not able to enter in because of unbelief.” (Hebrews 3:19 ASV)

“And he did not many {1} mighty works there because of their unbelief. {1) Gr [powers]}” (Matthew 13:58 ASV)

“For what if some were without faith? shall their want of faith make of none effect the faithfulness of God?” (Romans 3:3 ASV)

“And they also, if they continue not in their unbelief, shall be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again.” (Romans 11:23 ASV)

“though I was before a blasphemer, and a persecutor, and injurious: howbeit I obtained mercy, because I did it ignorantly in unbelief;” (1 Timothy 1:13 ASV)

Demand to open up the mind in willingness to receive faith

The Word of God is clear a believer has to open his mind and be willing to come to belief and to the right faith. In the world there are lots of people who, like told in the Holy Scriptures, do all that is possible to oppose the name of Jesus of Nazareth and to work against those who believe in the Most High God Jehovah.

Endpoint of a Christians’ acceptance of the unity of God

The author of the spoken of article does still finds that the

trinity is truly the endpoint of a Christians’ acceptance of the unity of God and believing that God is One (tawheed). Although Christians state that they believe in one God only, they are actually denying this since they have the belief in the trinity and associating  another with Allah (swt).

With such a statement for her Muslim brothers and sisters, she does injustice to the many Christians who do not believe in the false teaching of the trinity, and continues to create false ideas about Christians by Muslims.

Incarnation by Christians, Jews, Persians and Hindus

Even worse she wants them to give the impression that even other faith-groups have such contorted ideas:

The reason behind this is that Christians also believe in that Jesus (peace be upon him) was God incarnate on this Earth. Christians believe that Allah (swt) came down on Earth in the form of a man, as well as Jews, Persians and Hindus believe in that God has taken Himself into some human or animal form here on Earth. This happens when you lose the transcendency of Allah and the importance of his highness and start to believe that Allah (swt) is everywhere, when He is in fact above and beyond his creation.

Page from an 11th-century Aramaic Targum manuscript of the Hebrew Bible.

The Jews who did not accept Jesus as their Messiah and who stayed religious Jews never would agree with any idea of their God having taken on a human or animal form. About the Messianic Jews I do agree we can find two sorts: the faithful Israelites which accept Jeshua (Jesus) as the son of man who brought salvation; but then strangely enough we also can find Messianics who take Jesus Messiah also to be the incarnate God.

Picture representing a cross and trinity

This girl also present pictures, but if she would have read her Bible very carefully she also should have found out Jews and Christians may not make or use pictures of God. So in case Jesus is God why did she use such pictures in her childhood and why did she pray in front of pictures and statues, which is forbidden by the Word of God, which can be found in the Bible. (You could also wonder if she agrees that Allah is the Most High God, why she publishes a picture of somebody who has to present the Divine Creator?)

Taking everything for granted

Growing up in one’s parents faith

It all points out, that most people just grow up in a denomination and just take everything for granted. Most of them take over the dogmatic teachings and refer all time to such dogma’s, which make them blind for what is really written in the Holy Scriptures. The same we can see by several Muslim groups which take other books than the Quran for their guide.

Encountering other Christians

The girl, also making the cross, the sign of the god Tamuz (the god of evil), thinking that all Christians would do such abolition in the eyes of God, has, we regret, not found other Christians, which could have shown such signs are not right. Strange enough you would think in her life she should have at least encountered some preaching Christians, like the Mormons and like the Jehovah Witnesses. Why did she not encounter and talk with Jehovah Witnesses. And when she did, why does she not refer in her article to such other Christians who do not believe in the Trinity? Everywhere in the world people can find people knocking at the door in the name of Jehovah. How did it come that it not happen to this girl’s house?

We are happy she at last came to see that the Trinity is not true, but regret she left Christendom without finding real Christianity. Now she herself finds places in the Bible which say it all. Why could she not find them before she became a Muslim?

Late discovery

Now she herself got also got to see how and where the trinity came into existence:

The trinity is actually not true. This ideology was a man made factor that later on throughout the years became a basic principle in Christianity. This so-called trinity was actually obtained by Greek philosophers (Plato’s theories) and Jewish Gnosticism; none of it is pure Christianity.

How did it come she discovered this so late?
How did it come she did not find the Gospel faith and turned away from Christianity? Was it because she did not look enough for the truth? Was she so blinded by the doctrinal teachings of her church?
Was she not willing to accept thinkings from those who preached the truth, but other Christians called them Antichrist or said it were not Christians, which frightened her so much she did not dare to meet them again or continue looking for more of such people?

Allah is everywhere

Though we can see she does not want to see, yet, that the Most High God (Allah) has His Eyes everywhere, and is everywhere. She writes:

” Stating that Allah (swt) is everywhere would mean that you also believe that Allah (swt) is in excrement or in dirty and filthy places, which obviously He’s not.” though why should God not be there where people live in slums, prisons and dirty places? Why would the Most High Merciful Allah not be there by those who are most in need of Him?

She also says:

” If you as a Christian respect, cherish and fear your Lord, then explain to me how on Earth you will ever learn to fear a God that made himself into a man, or is in these filthy places?”

but does not see that God never made himself into a man. Christ Jesus is a man of flesh and blood who was born and died, whilst Allah/God, the Elohim Most High, is an Eternal Spirit, Who has no beginning and no end, and as such was never born and cannot die. (Naturally she started of with the thesis that all Christians believe in the trinity,which was already a wrong start.)

Allah knowing each heart

According to the Holy Scriptures God is everywhere and as the Creator of the universe allows everything to be what is on earth and in heavens (the Worlds where the Quran and God, Allah, The Cherisher and Sustainer of the Worlds is talking about).
Also the Quran agrees that Allah knows the hearts and as such knows every individual. Having His eyes on each person He sees than also each person even on dirty places. Nobody can hide before Allah.

ثُمَّ أَنْتُمْ هَٰؤُلَاءِ تَقْتُلُونَ أَنْفُسَكُمْ وَتُخْرِجُونَ فَرِيقًا مِنْكُمْ مِنْ دِيَارِهِمْ تَظَاهَرُونَ عَلَيْهِمْ بِالْإِثْمِ وَالْعُدْوَانِ وَإِنْ يَأْتُوكُمْ أُسَارَىٰ تُفَادُوهُمْ وَهُوَ مُحَرَّمٌ عَلَيْكُمْ إِخْرَاجُهُمْ ۚ أَفَتُؤْمِنُونَ بِبَعْضِ الْكِتَابِ وَتَكْفُرُونَ بِبَعْضٍ ۚ
وَأَقِيمُوا الصَّلَاةَ وَآتُوا الزَّكَاةَ ۚ وَمَا تُقَدِّمُوا لِأَنْفُسِكُمْ مِنْ خَيْرٍ تَجِدُوهُ عِنْدَ اللَّهِ ۗ إِنَّ اللَّهَ بِمَا تَعْمَلُونَ بَصِيرٌ

فَمَا جَزَاءُ مَنْ يَفْعَلُ ذَٰلِكَ مِنْكُمْ إِلَّا خِزْيٌ فِي الْحَيَاةِ الدُّنْيَا ۖ وَيَوْمَ الْقِيَامَةِ يُرَدُّونَ إِلَىٰ أَشَدِّ الْعَذَابِ ۗ وَمَا اللَّهُ بِغَافِلٍ عَمَّا تَعْمَلُونَ

Do they not know that Allah knows what they keep secret and what they make known?(2:77)

Yet you it is who slay your people and turn a party from among you out of their homes, backing each other up against them unlawfully and exceeding the limits; and if they should come to you, as captives you would ransom them– while their very turning out was unlawful for you. Do you then believe in a part of the Book and disbelieve in the other? What then is the re ward of such among you as do this but disgrace in the life of this world, and on the day of resurrection they shall be sent back to the most grievous chastisement, and Allah is not at all heedless of what you do.(2:85)

Fear for Allah, Jehovah, the God of heaven and earth

Yes, all people should fear Allah/God, Whose Name He also has given to the world and which we should honour. In fear we should come to see that it is better to get to know the Word of God as best as we can. Even when we are or to live in the dirtiest place in the world, or in the most evil place of the world, we should know that Allah sees us and know what goes on in our heart. It is not because we are in the worst place in the world that God would not see us, would not have attention to us, would not be willing to reach out His Hand to us. Wherever we are we personally do have to make our own choices, and this also concerning who to follow, the world or the Most High God, Allah the Elohim Hashem Jehovah.

“For Jehovah your God, he is God of gods, and Lord of lords, the great God, the mighty, and the terrible, who regardeth not persons, nor taketh reward.” (Deuteronomy 10:17 ASV)

“And he said, Behold, I make a covenant: before all thy people I will do marvels, such as have not been {1} wrought in all the earth, nor in any nation; and all the people among which thou art shall see the work of Jehovah; for it is a terrible thing that I do with thee. {1) Heb [created]}” (Exodus 34:10 ASV)

“And in thy majesty ride on prosperously, {1} Because of truth and meekness [and] righteousness: And {2} thy right hand shall teach thee terrible things. {1) Or [In behalf of] 2) Or [let thy right hand teach]}” (Psalms 45:4 ASV)

“The fear of Jehovah is the beginning of wisdom; {1} A good understanding have all they that do {2} [his commandments]: His praise endureth for ever. {1) Or [Good repute] 2) Heb [them]}” (Psalms 111:10 ASV)

“He hath sent redemption unto his people; He hath commanded his covenant for ever: Holy and reverend is his name.” (Psalms 111:9 ASV)

“I will give thanks unto thee; For I am fearfully and wonderfully made: Wonderful are thy works; And that my soul knoweth right well.” (Psalms 139:14 ASV)

“The fear of Jehovah is to hate evil: Pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, And the perverse mouth, do I hate.” (Proverbs 8:13 ASV)

“And Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus, and said, Ye men of Athens, in all things, I perceive that ye are {1} very religious. {1) Or [somewhat superstitious]}” (Acts 17:22 ASV)

“So then, my beloved, even as ye have always obeyed, not {1} as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; {1) Some ancient authorities omit [as]}” (Philippians 2:12 ASV)

“But even if ye should suffer for righteousness’ sake, blessed [are ye:] and fear not their fear, neither be troubled;” (1 Peter 3:14 ASV)

“Jehovah will be terrible unto them; for he will famish all the gods of the earth; and men shall worship him, every one from his place, even all the {1} isles of the nations. {1) Or [coast-lands]}” (Zephaniah 2:11 ASV)

Every day to learn from the Word of God, the Holy Scriptures

We do have the warnings from the Holy Scriptures which we should take seriously. For better and for worse, we do have to learn every day, we do have to open our mind (every day) for the Word of God, and let it enter in our minds so that It can feed us, more than the worldly food. Are main interest should go to the Spiritual Food, that God is prepared to give to all those who want to receive His Word, wherever they might be.

All faithful should know how important it is to open their hearts to Allah, because it is God Who knows the hearts and shall judge the people, allowing only those who are justified, because of their willingness to learn and to get to know the Divine Creator.

Let us all cherish the Word of the Sublime Supreme Being Divine Creator and try to get to know Him better.

 “{1} But unto us God revealed {2} [them] through the Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. {1) Some ancient authorities read [For] 2) Or, it}” (1 Corinthians 2:10 ASV)

“14 Now the {1} natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them, because they are spiritually {2} judged. {1) Or [unspiritual]; Gr [psychical] 2) Or [examined]} 15 But he that is spiritual {1} judgeth all things, and he himself is {2} judged of no man. {1) Or [examineth] 2) Or [examined]}” (1 Corinthians 2:14-15 ASV)

“I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of my heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, that are present here, offer willingly unto thee.” (1 Chronicles 29:17 ASV)

“Concerning which salvation the prophets sought and searched diligently, who prophesied of the grace that [should come] unto you:” (1 Peter 1:10 ASV)

“I can of myself do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is righteous; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.” (John 5:30 ASV)

“Now these were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of the mind, examining the Scriptures daily, whether these things were so.” (Acts 17:11 ASV)

“3 But with me it is a very small thing that I should be {1} judged of you, or of man’s {2} judgment: yea, I {3} judge not mine own self. {1) Or [examined] 2) Gr [day]; See 1 Co 3:13. 3) Or [examine]} 4 For I know nothing against myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that {1} judgeth me is the Lord. {1) Or [examineth]}” (1 Corinthians 4:3-4 ASV)

“Good and upright is Jehovah: Therefore will he instruct sinners in the way.” (Psalms 25:8 ASV)

“howbeit in the church I had rather speak five words with my understanding, that I might instruct others also, than ten thousand words in a tongue.” (1 Corinthians 14:19 ASV)

“not forsaking our own assembling together, as the custom of some is, but exhorting [one another]; and so much the more, as ye see the day drawing nigh.” (Hebrews 10:25 ASV)

“And many peoples shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of Jehovah, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth {1} the law, and the word of Jehovah from Jerusalem. {1) Or [instruction]}” (Isaiah 2:3 ASV)

Let us all read the Bible regularly so that we would not have to question like the author of the article does, with saying:

If this is in the Bible, then I really don’t know why Christians continue believing this so-called trinity.

Remember the former things of old: for I am God, and there is none else; I am God, and there is none like me. (Isa 46:9)

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Please do read as well:

  1. God of gods
  2. God, Creation and the Bible Hope
  3. Attributes of God
  4. God is Spirit
  5. God Helper and Deliverer
  6. Only One God
  7. God is One
  8. Sayings around God
  9. “Who is The Most High” ? Who is thee Eternal? Who is Yehovah? Who is God?
  10. The Divine name of the Creator
  11. God about His name “יהוה“
  12. Jehovah Yahweh Gods Name
  13. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #2 Calling upon the Name of God
  14. Jehovah my strength
  15. One God the Father, a compendium of essays
  16. Praise the most High Jehovah God above all
  17. Lord or Yahuwah, Yeshua or Yahushua
  18. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  19. Yahushua, Yehoshua, Yeshua, Jehoshua of Jeshua
  20. Who was Jesus?
  21. Seeing Jesus
  22. Jesus Messiah
  23. Jesus spitting image of his father
  24. Jesus and his God
  25. Is Jesus God?
  26. Jesus is the Son of God but Not God the Son
  27. How much was Jesus man, and how much was he God?
  28. Yeshua a man with a special personality
  29. A man with an outstanding personality
  30. Christ begotten through the power of the Holy Spirit
  31. Do not be afraid. Good news because a Saviour has been born
  32. About a man who changed history of humankind
  33. Reasons that Jesus was not God
  34. He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. #1 Creator and His Prophets
  35. One Mediator
  36. Christ Versus the Trinity
  37. Doesn’t the name “Immanuel” show that Jesus is God, and therefore proves the Trinity? (Isa. 7:14, Mat. 1:23)
  38. Is Isaiah 9:6′s “Wonderful counselor” related to Isaiah 7:14 and 8:8′s “Immanuel”?
  39. Why does Isaiah 9:6 call Jesus “Mighty God, Everlasting Father”?
  40. Is God a Trinity?
  41. The Trinity – true or false?
  42. The Trinity – the Truth
  43. The Trinity: paganism or Christianity?
  44. How did the Trinity Doctrine Develop
  45. History of the acceptance of a three-in-one God
  46. Altered to fit a Trinity
  47. Preexistence in the Divine purpose and Trinity
  48. The Great Trinity Debate
  49. Christianity without the Trinity
  50. Articles about the Trinity by the Free Christadelphians
  51. Articles about the Trinity by the Brothers in Christ or Christadelphians
  52. Articles about the Trinity by the Bible Students
  53. Articles about the Trinity by the Bible Researchers or Bijbelvorsers
  54. Articles about the Trinity on Our World
  55. Articles about the Trinity by Guestwriters
  56. Faith
  57. Concerning gospelfaith
  58. Of the many books Only the Bible can transform
  59. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  60. Do not forget the important sign of belief
  61. Religions and Mainliners
  62. Not all christians are followers of a Greco-Roman culture
  63. Vision blurred by cumulative burden of divisions
  64. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  65. A Society pleading poverty
  66. Russell and his beliefs
  67. Belonging to or being judged by
  68. Not words of any organisation should bind you, but the Word of God
  69. Idolatry or idol worship
  70. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  71. Muslims should also Fear God

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  • The Abrahamic Religions (robertjrgraham.com)
    When the emotions are removed, and we just look at the facts.  There really isn’t that much difference between the major religions at all.  Is there room for us to look at our beliefs objectively?  What about learning from each other, and evolving to understand?  Is it possible that there is something we don’t understand about God, the meaning of which could change everything?  Just a thought.
    +
    Islam is the second largest religion in the world after Christianity. As a monotheistic faith that originated in the Middle East, Islam holds many beliefs and practices in common with Judaism and Christianity.Judaism, Islam and Christianity are collectively known as “Abrahamic religions” because they trace their history to the covenant God made with Abraham in the Hebrew Bible.The Prophet Muhammad met both Jews and Christians during his lifetime, and Islam has come into frequent contact with both of its fellow monotheistic faiths throughout most of its history.

    As a brief guide of the similarities and differences of Islam, Judaism and Christianity, the following chart compares the statistics, origins, history and religious beliefs of these three great monotheistic faiths.

  • Dr. Reza Azlan’s Argument on the ‘Kalimah Allah’ (aimanamani.wordpress.com)
    Dr. Aslan says that “Al-Ilah means The God”.

    “Al-Ilah means ‘The God’. Allah is not the name of God.”

    Fine – Dr. Aslan says that it is okay for the Christians to call their God, Allah because to his understanding, Allah simply means ‘The God’. What Aslan failed to understand is that the Arabic word ‘Al’, meaning ‘the’ in English is used to emphasise the fact that ‘Allah’ is one and the only God. When a Muslim says ‘Allah’, he is referring to our one and only God. Now, for the Malaysian Christians who want to call their god, ‘Allah’ , does it means that they are rejecting the Christian doctrine of the Holy Trinity? Or do they think that Elohim, YHWH and Jehovah are not classy enough to refer to their god?

  • Celebrating Christendom’s Demise? (juicyecumenism.com)
    Celebrating liberation from the church’s supposed captivity under reputedly fallen Christendom has become popular among some conservative and liberal Protestants. According to this narrative, cultural Christianity often suffocated authentic faith and facilitated superficial religion.
    +
    Christendom’s obituary was even hailed at the recent Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s 221st General Assembly (2014), where it was determined, according to a denominational news report, that “post-Christendom life in the United States can be pretty exciting.”But should Christians really welcome the “excitement” of a more unChristian America? Apparently so, according to one speaker among the Presbyterians.
    +“Christendom is over,” declared Lillian Daniel of First Congregational Church in Glen Ellyn, Illinois at the General Assembly Breakfast. “The denominational market-share no longer exists. And in some ways, that is a beautiful thing.” She added, “It is good that we live in a multi-faith world.”

    Of course, Christianity has always existed in a multi-faith world, but maybe here she was referring to America specifically, although the adherents of non-Christian religion, according to one recent survey, are only 5 percent of U.S. population.

  • Islam, Violence, and the Nature of God (catholicworldreport.com)
    Although the topic of violence in Islam is a controversial one, Benedict XVI placed it at the center of his treatment of our knowledge of God within his often misunderstood and misrepresented Regensburg Lecture, given eight years ago, on September 12, 2006. Put simply, false views of God’s nature can lead to religiously motivated actions, such as terrorism and violent persecution, which are contrary to the nature and will of God. This discussion is all the more timely and important as the United States marks the anniversary of the attacks on September 11, 2001, as radical Islamist groups such as ISIS persecute Christians in Iraq and other countries, and as Catholics seek ways to move forward in authentic and meaningful dialogue with Muslims.Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? A number of prominent Catholic apologists and bloggers have addressed this question recently. This essay will briefly summarize and comment on each of their arguments. It will then present some further thoughts arguing that the question requires assistance from philosophy: how do we know God correctly, or more precisely, how do we get knowledge of God wrong?
  • Muslim convert calls the Pope’s bluff on Islam (ivarfjeld.com)
    Egyptian-born Magdi Cristiano Allam, 61, a prominent journalist and outspoken critic of Islam, publicly entered the Catholic Church on March 22, 2008 during an Easter Vigil service, receiving baptism directly from Benedict.
    After his conversion, Allam founded a small right-wing political party that lost badly in Italy’s general elections last April.The late Pope kisses the Koran. Writing on Monday in the right-wing daily Il Giornale, Allam explained that he considers his conversion to Catholicism finished “in combination with the end of (Benedict’s) pontificate.”
  • Malaysian Court: “Allah is not Bible’s God’ (rehmat1.com)
    The court decision provided the Zionist Mafia another excuse for Islam-bashing while showing their ignorance of their own Judeo-Christian religious scriptures.The presiding judge, Zawawi Salleh along with Federal Court judge Mohamed Apandi Ali and Appeals Court judge Abdul Aziz Abdul Rahim, provided sufficient religious background to support the court’s decision, which, naturally, was ignored by the Zionist-controlled mainstream media.Judge Zawari said there was potential for ambiguity if Allah was allowed to be used in The Herald.

    If the word Allah is to be employed in the Malay versions of The Herald to refer to God, there will be a risk of misrepresentation of God within Christianity. This is because the Christian concept of God as symbolised by the Trinity is absolutely and completely dissimilar to the concept of Allah in Islam. The potential for confusion is not confined only to Muslims but also to Christians,” said Zawari.

  • ‘I Realized It’s A Beautiful Religion’ – Mexican Catholics Leaving ‘Dios’ For ‘Allah’ (patdollard.com)

    For almost five centuries Catholicism has been the dominant religion in Mexico.

    In 1970, Catholics comprised 96.7 percent of Mexico’s population. By 2010, that number had fallen to 82.7 percent, according to the Pew Research Center. Most of this change is attributed to growth in other Christian denominations. Evangelicals, Protestants and Jehovah’s Witnesses now account for 8 percent of Mexicans who identify with a religion.

    And a small yet growing group of converts are seeking spiritual salvation in Islam. In fact, Pew estimates Mexico will be home to 126,000 Muslims by 2030, up from 111,000 in 2010.

  • For Bumiputera Christians, ‘Allah’ ban akin to cultural ‘genocide’, says archbishop (malaysia-today.net)
    Putrajaya’s persistence in refusing non-Muslim Malaysians the right to use the word “Allah” is tantamount to the systematic destruction of the language and culture of the Bumiputera community in Sabah and Sarawak, the head of the Anglican Church in Southeast Asia said.Archbishop Datuk Bolly Lapok said the word “Allah” has been part and parcel of the community’s language for generations and has become “embedded” in every aspect of their culture, including for the Bumiputera Christians, who make up the majority of Malaysia’s Christian population.However, the government’s prohibition and the Federal Court’s denial for the Catholic Church to appeal for the right to publish the “Allah” in its weekly newspaper, had made the Bumiputera Christians feel they had been wronged, said the Sarawakian senior clergyman.

    “In other words, it is in our language and culture DNA. We feel that the judgment was made without taking into due consideration of what the word means to us.

    “We feel there has been a miscarriage of justice. It is insidious. It is tantamount to an act of language and culture genocide,” said Bolly, who also chairs the Association of Churches in Sarawak.

  • Can we call God ‘Allah’? (christiantoday.com)
    The language used in the Bible has long been the subject of contention – not least in Malaysia, where authorities ruled this week that non-Muslims cannot refer to God as ‘Allah‘.A Muslim-majority country, many Malays believe that the national conscience must be firmly rooted in Islam, and therefore resent the influence of the Chinese Christian population who are active in evangelising among Malays.However, Mark Beaumont, senior lecturer in Islam and mission at the London School of Theology, says that while there is controversy regarding the way that God and Allah are referred in Malaysia, in other parts of the world it’s considered far less of a contentious issue.

    “In the Arab speaking world there’s no difficulty in calling God ‘Allah’ – they’ve been doing it in the Christian church and in the Bible for hundreds of years,” he explains.

    “In the Coptic Church in Egypt, the church in Syria, Jordan, Iraq and even Iran, it’s always been the practice to call God ‘Allah’ using the Arabic form. Although the Arabic Bible wasn’t translated fully before Islam came, it’s obvious that people were reading the Gospels using ‘Allah’ before the rise of Islam.

    “In the ancient history of the Middle East, ‘Allah’ is the equivalent of ‘Elohim’, the Hebrew word for God.”

  • Hajj 2014 – The Day of Arafat… (faithiswheretheheartis.wordpress.com)
    One has to remember that The Day of Arafat is a significant day for every Muslim. It is significant in many aspects for the Hajj Pilgrims as they travel from Mina to Arafat and it is also significant for the Muslims who are not performing Hajj. The Hajj Pilgrims will be travelling from Mina to Arafat (the place near Makkah, Saudi Arab – where the Mount Arafat is located). Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal-e-Rahmat (Mountain of Mercy) is the place where the Prophet Muhammad (Peace Be Upon Him) stood and delivered his last, farewell sermon on 10th Hijri (632 AD); in accordance with the Islamic calendar.
    +
    One of Prophet Abraham’s main trials was to face the command of Allah (SWT) to kill his only son. Upon hearing this command, he prepared to submit to Allah’s Will. When he was all prepared to do it, Allah (SWT) revealed to him that his “sacrifice” had already been fulfilled. He had shown that his love for his Lord superseded all others; that he would lay down his own life or the lives of those dear to him in order to submit to God.

 

Marriage of Jesus 2 Standard writings about Jesus

The 4 New Testament gospels – do not tell us explicitly whether Jesus was married or not. They don’t mention his having a girlfriend or a wife. Nor do they state that he was unmarried.

Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and Martha at Bethany

Jesus, Mary Magdalene, and Martha at Bethany (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Man is a strange being which thinks often a man has to have a sexual feeling and a sexual relation. Not talking about such sexual feelings would indicate, according to some, that there is something wrong. For that reason some see in the choice of canonic gospels a plot to cover up the truth about Jesus his true character and personal feelings. Others see the silence of the gospels as proof that Jesus could not have been married. I do think it is all speculation and really does not matter if Jesus had been married to Miriam (Myriam) of Magdala, today better known as Mary Magdalene, or to any other woman for that matter. The ones against the Bible naturally would love to bring up that the earliest Christians conspired to hide any information because it confirmed ‘the fact that Jesus wasn’t divine‘, but they do forget that the Bible tells everybody that Jesus is the ‘son of God‘ and nowhere is told that he would be the ‘god son‘.  So on that matter they have no leg to stand on.  Like my wife can be divine, Jesus also could and really was divine without being the divine, a big difference. Real believers in the One God do not have any reason to become conspirators, hiding more human factors of Jesus, nor looking at imaginative texts which are based on fiction, like the Da Vinci Code and the Gnostic Gospels.

The early gospel writers where not at all afraid to tell anything about personal issues of Christ, but what would it contribute to his message or to the reliability of this Messiah? At that time, most of them Jews, knowing that there was only One True Divine God, there was also no reason at all to make an explicit difference between His son Jeshua (Jesus Christ), the Master teacher or rebbe/rabbi they were following, and the Divine God. For the early followers of Christ it was clear as water that their teacher was a prophet and man of flesh and blood. There was no reason at all to explicitly bring any proof of his manhood into their writings, because everybody saw in him a man who was the son of Abraham and the son of David. There was not yet any question of a ‘Holy Trinity‘. Jesus his position as son of Adam, a man being born (begotten), having his mother Miriam (Mary/Maria) from the tribe of King David, had naturally the same human feelings like any other human being. That is why it is so important that the Messiah would be some one who really could know very well how human beings thought and felt. After he had totally done the Will of his Father in heaven, and not his own will, God made him higher than the angels and took him up into heaven to come and sit at His right hand to be a mediator between God and man.

The Gospel According to Jesus Christ

The Gospel According to Jesus Christ (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The apostles and followers of the movement of Christ Jesus (the Way), trusted so much in the position of Jesus Christ that they were not afraid to give their lives for their faith in him.There was no reason at all for the New Testament writers to include very personal material on their subject, which they considered to be the Messiah, the long awaited Saviour, about whom many prophets had spoken of for years. The apostles their writings containing no explicit answer to the question of Jesus’ marital state does not say anything about a well or not divinity of Christ, nor can it be proven that they omitted certain things for special reasons, to make their ‘figure’ more important or special.We may assume none of the four gospels mention Jesus his wife, nor that he was unmarried, because it was of no importance to the message or the bringing of Good News, which was the essence of the Gospel. The New Testament gospels give us everything we do have to know to place Jesus in his time. It tells how he was born and refers to Jesus’ natural relatives (his heavenly and his earthly father, mother, and siblings). Though Jesus had reached the age at which young men in his day married, Jesus and his family realized that he had a special calling which would make marriage quite difficult. From early in his childhood Jesus was aware of his calling and we can imagine that he also could have been aware which problems his task would bring onto the people around him. For him it could have been already very difficult to face that he was having to hurt his own earthly parents so much. The grief his mother would have when she would loose her son, could have been already sufficient not to involve any other female person in his life.

In our matriarchal and patriarchal societies most people assume a human being can not stay on his or her own and has to make a sexual connection with somebody of the other or of the same sex.  Not many people do believe two or more people can live together, without having sex with each other. Therefore two women or two men living together mostly bring certain ideas in the onlookers minds. Long time it has been considered strange as well, when a person wanted to live on his or her own. But through the ages there were several people who preferred to remain single.  At the time of Jesus this would have been perceived as an unusual, even a counter-cultural choice. But then Jesus never shied away from the unusual or counter-cultural, especially when it came to his relationships with women.

Lots of people forget that we do not only have to look at religious books to get something to know about Jesus and his time. Many lay books tell us about customs in the time we consider the Messiah lived. In case Jesus preferred not to have intimate feelings for somebody of the other sex and wanted to stay single by choice, he would not be a real exception. Jesus his mother Miriam (Mary/Maria) belonged to a Jewish sect (the Essenes) which was very devote and had many people who stayed single whole their life.

The Jewish philosopher Philo, who lived in Alexandria, Egypt, was a contemporary of Jesus who wrote many volumes in the first half of the century. As in any time he looked at marriage and how people coped with it. He wrote:

Again, perceiving with more than ordinary acuteness and accuracy, what is alone or at least above all other things calculated to dissolve such associations, they repudiate marriage; and at the same time they practise continence in an eminent degree; for no one of the Essenes ever marries a wife . . . . This now is the enviable system of life of these Essenes, so that not only private individuals but even mighty kings, admiring the men, venerate their sect, and increase their dignity and majesty in a still higher degree by their approbation and by the honours which they confer on them. {Philo, Hypothetica 11.14-17}

An other well known Jewish historian wrote near the end of the century:

These Essenes reject pleasures as an evil, but esteem continence, and the conquest over our passions, to be virtue. They neglect wedlock, but choose out other persons’ children, while they are pliable, and fit for learning, and esteem them to be of their kindred, and form them according to their own manners. They do not absolutely deny the fitness of marriage, and the succession of mankind thereby continued; but they guard against the lascivious behaviour of women, and are persuaded that none of them preserve their fidelity to one man. {Josephus, Jewish War, 2.8.2}

It also deserves our admiration, how much [the Essenes] exceed all other men that addict themselves to virtue, and this in righteousness; and indeed to such a degree, that as it hath never appeared among any other men, neither Greeks nor barbarians, no, not for a little time, so hath it endured a long while among them. This is demonstrated by that institution of theirs, which will not suffer any thing to hinder them from having all things in common; so that a rich man enjoys no more of his own wealth than he who hath nothing at all. There are about four thousand men that live in this way, and neither marry wives, nor are desirous to keep servants; as thinking the latter tempts men to be unjust, and the former gives the handle to domestic quarrels; but as they live by themselves, they minister one to another. {Josephus, Antiquities 18.1.5}

According to Philo and Josephus many Essenes chose to be unmarried because they thought that women had a negative impact on men. A specific personal relation with somebody else could interfere with the connection and with the amount of time available for worship of God. They believed it was better to be unmarried and having enough time to spend to do the work for God, bringing people to know the Most High Elohim.
Some may think there is no reason to believe that Jesus shared this perspective, but been brought up in an Essene family it could well be. He too did join the Essenes in accepting an apocalyptic worldview that anticipated the coming of God’s kingdom. This helps to explain Jesus’s unusual attitude toward singleness and marriage.

The social decorum during the time of Jeshua and his apostles may have virtually forbidden a Jewish man to be unmarried, because according to Jewish custom, celibacy was condemned , in fact, we have solid evidence that some Jewish men chose to remain unmarried, and that leading Jewish thinkers praised them for this choice.

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Jesus wife payrus transcript Jesus wife papyrus translation

Preceding article: Marriage of Jesus 1 Mary, John, Judas, Thomas and Brown

Next articles:

Marriage of Jesus 3 Listening women

Marriage of Jesus 4 Place of the woman

Marriage of Jesus 5 Papyrus fragment  in Egyptian Coptic

Marriage of Jesus 6 Jesus said to them “My wife”

Marriage of Jesus 7 Impaled

Marriage of Jesus 8 Wife of Yahweh

Marriage of Jesus 9 Reason for a new marriage

Marriage of Jesus 10 Old and New Covenant

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Additional reading:

  1. Jesus begotten Son of God #6 Anointed Son of God, Adam and Abraham
  2. Jesus begotten Son of God #9 Two millennia ago conceived or begotten
  3. Jesus begotten Son of God #10 Coming down spirit or flesh seed of Eve
  4. Jesus begotten Son of God #11 Existence and Genesis Raising up
  5. Jesus begotten Son of God #12 Son of God
  6. Jesus begotten Son of God #13 Pre-existence excluding virginal birth of the Only One Transposed
  7. Jesus begotten Son of God #15 Son of God Originating in Mary
  8. Jesus begotten Son of God #16 Prophet to be heard
  9. Jesus begotten Son of God #17 Adam, Eve, Mary and Christianity’s central figure
  10. Jesus begotten Son of God #19 Compromising fact
  11. Jesus begotten Son of God #20 Before and After
  12. Nazarene Commentary Matthew 3:13-17 – Jesus Declared God’s Son at His Baptism
  13. In the death of Christ, the son of God, is glorification
  14. The meek one riding on an ass
  15. Servant of his Father
  16. Philippians 1 – 2
  17. Creator and Blogger God 2 Image and likeness
  18. Patriarch Abraham, Muslims, Christians and the son of God
  19. Getting out of the dark corners of this world
  20. Many forgot how Christ should be our anchor and our focus
  21. Not all christians are followers of a Greco-Roman culture
  22. Concerning gospelfaith
  23. Epitome of the one faith
  24. My faith
  25. Only One God
  26. God is one
  27. The Trinity – the Truth
  28. God’s salvation
  29. Knowing rabboni
  30. One mediator

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  • ‘Gospel Of Jesus’ Wife’ Papyrus Is Ancient, Not Fake, Experts Say (huffingtonpost.com) (video)
    An ancient, business-card-sized papyrus fragment that appears to quote Jesus Christ discussing his wife is real, Harvard University announced Thursday. The fragment caused international uproar when it was revealed by a Harvard historian in September 2012, with prominent academics and the Vatican swiftly deeming it a forgery.Harvard officials said scientists both within and outside the university extensively tested the papyrus and carbon ink of the badly aged fragment, dubbed the “Gospel of Jesus’ Wife.” The document, written in Coptic, a language of ancient Egyptian Christians, is made up of eight mostly legible dark lines on the front and six barely legible faded lines on the back. The handwriting and grammar were also examined over the last year and a half to confirm its authenticity. Scientists have concluded the fragment dates back to at least the sixth to ninth centuries, and possibly as far back as the fourth century.
  • Was Mary Magdalen Jesus’ wife or merely his bitch? (freethinker.co.uk)
    Christian tradition holds that Jesus did not marry. But a number of experts vouched for the authenticity of the fragment. They said, in the early years, Jesus’s marital status was subject to debate. This text, they added, proved that some early Christians believed Jesus was married.But Wolf-Peter Funk, a professor and noted Coptic linguist, who co-directed the francophone project editing the Nag Hammadi Coptic library at Laval University, in Quebec, questioned the claim
  • Reality check on Jesus and his ‘wife’ (cosmiclog.nbcnews.com)
    Fans of the Dan Brown thriller are already familiar with the theory that Jesus and Mary Magdalene had a husband-and-wife relationship. The basis for such speculation lies in Gnostic gospels that came out in the second, third and fourth centuries, but were left out of the standardized scriptures — texts such as the Gospel of Philip, the Gospel of Mary and the recently reconstructed Gospel of Judas.Even though only a few phrases can be read on the papyrus fragment that’s just come to light, those phrases are consistent with the Gnostic view of early Christianity — which tended to give a more prominent role to women, and particularly to Mary Magdalene. The text, written in the Sahidic Coptic dialect, includes the phrase “Jesus said to them, ‘My wife…'” as well as references to a woman named Mary being “worthy of it,” and to a woman who “will be able to be my disciple.”
  • ‘Too holy’ for sex? The problem of a married Jesus (usnews.nbcnews.com)
    If a fourth-century fragment of papyrus that purportedly quotes Jesus telling his disciples about “my wife” is authenticated, it could upend the modern church’s understanding of the “son of God.”“If Jesus is a normal human being and he’s sexual, that’s the real fear,” James Tabor, a biblical scholar at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and the co-author of books about Jesus and his family, told NBC News. “You can’t think of Jesus like that because he’s too holy.”
  • Why Jesus Christ Is Not a Jewish Prophet (guardianlv.com)
    A leading rabbi claims Jesus Christ’s behavior in the New Testament was that of “not a very good Jew” in a candid interview in which he explains to Guardian Liberty Voice readers why the historical religious figure is not a Jewish prophet. On Wednesday, May 14, the Jewish faith marks Pesach Sheni (Second Passover), a time set aside one month after Passover to allow Jews to make up the Korban Pesach, or pascal lamb sacrifice, if they missed it the first time.Yet while Jews use the time to reflect on one of, if not the most significant date in their calendar, in three days’ time, Christians will observe Ascension Day, which marks the last earthly appearance of Jesus Christ. He was arrested on – before being crucified – the most talked about Passover meal in history.
  • Jesus as the “Way of Life”: Deconstructing John 14:6 (musingsfromabricolage.wordpress.com)
    The similarities between John and the Synoptic gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke) indicate John’s author may have been familiar with one or more of the Synoptics. While scholars have debated whether or not John’s author used the other gospels as sources for his own work, most agree that he had known at least Mark’s – and possibly Luke’s – oral traditions and may have seen some of their pre-gospel manuscripts. For that reason, the majority of scholars claim that the earliest John could have been composed was after Mark’s composition date: around 68-73 AD.
  • Jesus Preaches in the Synagogues of Judea // Jesus Calls the First Disciples (travismikhailblog.wordpress.com)
    The kingdom of Christ is closely connected with the ancient kingdom of David. For centuries David’s empire lay in ruins, existing only in the minds of the prophets who foretold its glorious restoration by the Messiah (Is 9:6-7; Amos9:11; Mk 11:10; Acts 1:6). Jesus now comes as the messianic heir to resurrect this fallen kingdom in a spiritual way, ruling from his throne at the Father’s right hand (Mk 16:19; Acts 2:33-36). His everlasting reign in the heavenly Jerusalem thus fulfills God’s covenant oath to establish David’s throne for all time (1:32– 33; Ps 89:3-4).
  • Avoiding the Sin of Adultery Matthew 5:27-30 (whatshotn.wordpress.com)
    In many ways, the Sermon on the Mount is a face-off between Jesus and Judaism. You see this confrontation in a number of places, such as in Matthew 5:20, where Jesus said, “Unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you are not going to make it into the kingdom of God” (my paraphrase). These are pretty strong words, especially for the scribes and Pharisees who thought they had 50-yard line tickets to the kingdom of God. At the end of the Sermon on the Mount, you may remember that the people came away saying, “Wow!” They were amazed and said, “This man teaches with authority and not like the scribes.” And so the Sermon on the Mount is a confrontation between Jesus and the scribes and the Pharisees, who will be His most aggressive opponents in the Gospels.
  • Daily Homily: I Know Those Whom I Have Chosen Thursday of the Fourth Week of Easter (blackpoolparish.wordpress.com)
    In their respective overviews, Peter emphasized the fulfillment of the prophets and psalms in Jesus the Lord and Christ; Stephen showed how the people resisted the action of God in the past and how they resisted and betrayed Jesus Christ, the Son of Man; Paul now emphasizes how God saved his people in the past and offers them definitive salvation (forgiveness of sins) through Jesus Christ, the descendant of David.
  • Man claims he’s Jesus, girlfriend is Mary Magdalene (mobile.wnd.com)
    An Australian man is gaining worldwide attention and followers from America as he claims he’s actually Jesus Christ of Nazareth and his girlfriend is Mary Magdalene from the Bible.
    +
    He says his first marriage fell apart when he began to remember details of his incarnation.But irrespective of Miller’s ex-wife in Australia, he refers to Luck as “my soulmate, and who was actually married to me in the first century, and was pregnant with our daughter when I died.”
    +
    Miller who lives near the small town of Kingaroy in the state of Queensland, has a regular following of some 150 people, and strongly rejects any suggestion he’s a cult leader forcing people to do what they don’t wish.

    “All we do is present seminars and answer people’s questions. I still for the life of me can’t quite understand where the cult thing has come from,” he told Sky.

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Depression, Anxiety, Pressure and megachurches

Big churches with many dreams but also with anxiety

In the church world many say because they are the biggest church they must be the church closest to the truth and the right church.

In the United States of America you may find lots of Mega Churches and Holland is not doing bas getting also more people in churches where all sorts of happenings attire lots of people with entertaining services. In those mega churches we also often find preachers who seem to be obsessed with religious rules and legalism and who try to make their flock afraid of what they do. Everywhere seems to be the devil looking around the corner. They preach about the Satan going to destroy them if they do not turn away from him and come to Jesus.

Those preachers are more obsessed with the sins and shortcomings of others and make it their obsession to point out their faults.

Preachers like Perry Noble, are known more for what he attacked rather than what he built up! But by Noble some change took place after he had taken a sabbatical year.

Perry Noble

To his mega church where he ministered for 12 years for a congregation which drew around 16,000 people every weekend, in 2012 he made it clear to them that he was committed to NewSpring, which he founded, and that he wasn’t leaving to figure out if he’s supposed to stay. His goal was to lead the church for another 20 years until age 60. That is when he wants to pass the baton to the next generation.

“In order for me to lead this church well for the next 20 years, there’s got to be some changes in me,”

he told his congregation in 2012 when he preached his final message before his break.

Layers to be peeled

“I noticed the closer you get to Jesus, he just peels back another layer on your life of something that you’ve got to work on.”

Noble has not shied away from admitting his weaknesses and how “screwed up” he was to his church. He was open about having battled depression just a few years ago.

“I’m not the perfect person but I am trying my best to pursue Jesus,”

he said.

Men of God and Burn out

That pastor may have been very passionate in what he was doing and had to face a burn out. A few thousand years ago, the prophet Jeremiah also suffered burnout. Decades of pronouncing judgement on an unrepentant Israel wore him down. In the book named after him, he begs for release from this horrible work, but God forbids him to leave it. Jeremiah’s battle against burnout reveals who he really is as a leader – a mixture of character traits and weaknesses we can all appreciate.

The man in the old times we can imagine, got very frustrated, having to speak about the bad things people do and having to pronounces only destruction.  Other prophets get to speak of magnificent future events but Jeremiah is confronted with a stubborn people (the Israelites) who could see what God had done already for them, but where not appreciative for it, and were not interested to change their way of living, so that the prophet also could not change his message.

Losing sight and falling in a pit

"The Prophet Jeremiah" (1968)

“The Prophet Jeremiah” (1968) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The great prophet demands to know why God has allowed him to fall into this pit. Years of throwing himself into his work without any results or reward has left him burned out and resentful. The problem, God tells him, is that he has forgotten his calling. Jeremiah must return to the original vision that launched his ministry.

Today, in the churches all over the world we also can find lots of people who have lost sight of the reason why they were called. Many when they were young were really looking for God, but found a stable home, were they could feel at ease by a certain church denomination. In that church they were comforted they could have a living and do not have to worry about their income, nor have to make steps themselves on their own to build places where they could preach and worship God.

To stay fresh and focused, many like to make sure that they have certain getaway rituals. By many ministers the attraction of a growing church, having lots of people coming to listen to them, brings them to put on shows or to present some sort of entertainment which can attract more people. They start losing track of their real purpose and do think it is best for church to have many people joining in. Most of them do prefer to control everything themselves; They forget that the body of Christ is one of many people doing different jobs in that body, the church. they themselves start thinking they have to do it all. They count on themselves (instead of on God) to do everything what is needed to make a big church, to solve the many problems, build products with too many features, and often they can not say ‘no’ to lots of thing of which they should be able to say “no” or “I can not”.

They forget that if they include every decent idea that comes along, they’ll just wind up with a half-[baked] version of their product.

Outside world

Prophet Jeremiah, Russian icon from first quar...

Prophet Jeremiah and the Scriptures – Russian icon from first quarter of 18th cen. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If we say yes to all outside influences, including everyone else’s expectations, opinions, and criticisms, we shall end up with a half-baked, burned-out version of ourself.

Perry Noble made it his goal to catch people doing something wrong and condemn them and perhaps forgot to see the person he himself really was.  Instead of reaching out to them with compassion and a genuine concern he became judging them.

We also have to be careful not to judge others, and we certainly can damn them or threaten them with places of torture for indefinitely. According to the Scriptures no such place exist. The hell being spoken off is just the grave where we all shall end up. Even Jesus, who never sinned landed up in hell for three days.

Faith, Correctness and discussions

Today we may find many who do not like to associate with anyone or any group that does not acknowledge that he or she is completely correct in his or her view and for religious people this concerns also their interpretation of the Scriptures. On the internet but also in real life we see can  hear heavy discussions going on … and, if the other person does not want to think or see just like him he would attack and malign them as often as possible. (Kind of goes against what Jesus said in John 13:34-35)

Perry Noble admits he fell also in such a trap. He also remembers the very first time he ever had to deal with someone who told him they were struggling with anxiety and depression. He did not understand and could not relate-so, he told them what he thought was the typical “Christian” answer to all problems … they should pray more, read their Bible more and memorize more Scripture.

Instead of lessening the load he was unintentionally adding to it.

The person mentioned, their doctor had told them about going on a certain type of anti-depressant, to help out with their struggle, and so they asked his opinion.

He says now:

In a completely illiterate and uneducated manner I told them that people with “weak faith” are the ones that needed such meds, that godly people did not struggle with feelings of anxiety and depression and that taking such medication would essentially be screaming to God, “I don’t trust you.”

Coming through the storm by learning

He himself also got into a terrible state of not seeing any more where he could go. Through a series of situations in his life that needed to be changed, along with some intense and excellent Biblical counselling he was able to come through the storm that had dominated him for so long. From what he learned at his time of depression, many others can also learn. Today he is willing to share his experiences so that others can learn from it and avoid coming into such a mess he came into. For today’s believers it is not made easy either, because they are tossed about by every wind of “doctrine” because so few preachers seem to be preaching absolute Truth and sound doctrine. They also see what lots of those ministers or priest do in their daily life, not according to what they are preaching or demanding that their churchgoers would have to do.
So many people have become so frightened by other people, instead of knowing that human beings can not totally destroy an other person. He might kill him or her, but that will not solve the problem for the killer. For the one killed he might not have pain any more so the worldly problems would be solved.  A Satisfied Spirit does not have to fear. Most people also want to have the right in their hand and want to believe they are right in everything. In case they would be more humble and come to see that not one person can be right in everything, life would be easier. We should give each other much more “the right to be wrong about everything” and allow ourselves also to have mistakes and getting to learn form our mistakes.

> Please do continue reading about Depression and Anxiety, in:

  1. Searching for fulfillment and meaning through own efforts, facing unsatisfaction and depression
  2. Depression Is and When
  3. Anxiety’s Hold
  4. Believe What You Will
  5. When feeling sad, not sure of there being a Divine Creator
  6. Be an encourager
  7. Duty of encouragement

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Additional reading:

  1. When discouraged facing opposition
  2. Words to push and pull
  3. No prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation
  4. Christendom Astray The Devil Not A Personal Super-Natural Being
  5. Satan the evil within
  6. Does God exist?
  7. Our relationship with God, Jesus and each other
  8. Many forgot how Christ should be our anchor and our focus
  9. Jesus Christ being dispatched as the Figurehead of a Religion
  10. Jesus three days in hell
  11. Parts of the body of Christ
  12. The task given to us to love each other
  13. Reasons to come to gether
  14. Testify of the things heard
  15. How should we preach?
  16. Good or bad preacher
  17. Who are you going to reach out to today
  18. Attitude to others important for reaching them
  19. Many churches
  20. Who are the honest ones?
  21. Six Reasons Young Christians Leave Church
  22. Greatest single cause of atheism
  23. What’s church for, anyway? (by Marcus Ampe)
  24. Knowing where to go to
  25. Democratic principles for the church of today
  26. Church is a Hospital for sinners
  27. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  28. God is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him
  29. The Spirit of God brings love, hope and freedom
  30. Love for each other attracting others
  31. Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair
  32. Holiness and expression of worship coming from inside
  33. Doctrine and Conduct Cause and Effect
  34. Being Religious and Spiritual 8 Spiritual, Mystic and not or well religious
  35. Be humble like Christ
  36. Faith and trial
  37. A Living Faith #4 Effort
  38. Caricaturing and disapproving sceptics, religious critics and figured out ethics
  39. Some one or something to fear #3 Cases, folks and outing
  40. Raise a standard to which the wise and honest can repair
  41. If you want to go far in life
  42. Remember that who you’re being is just as important as what you’re doing
  43. We have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace
  44. Abhor evil. Adhere to goodness
  45. Kill the messenger
  46. Work with joy and pray with love
  47. Act as if everything you think, say and do determines your entire life
  48. Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience
  49. You only lose energy when life becomes dull in your mind
  50. No good thing will he withhold
  51. Is the Megachurch the New Liberalism?
  52. Problems attracting and maintaining worshippers

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  1. Should Christians Take Medication for Mental Illness?
  2. 5 Practical Things to Consider Before Taking an Antidepressant
  3. One of the Most Powerful Leadership Principles I’ve Ever Learned
  4. The One Thing That Holds Most Leaders Back
  5. Why Are So Many Churches Hearing So Little of the Bible from Their Preachers?
  6. Preachers of L.A. Dressed to Impress, But Is Jesus Pleased?
  7. #PreachersofLA: As Real as It Gets
  8. Preachers Of LA’s Bishop McClendon Says He Was Set Up
  9. What if Modern Preachers Preached What Jesus was Preaching?
  10. A Plea for Sharp and Polished Preachers…
  11. In Have You Seen the Viral Videos of the ‘Pint-Sized Preachers’ Yet? (theblaze.com) you can see how children can be exploited and which impression some people have about “teaching” and “preaching” and what certain people do call a “sermon”.
  12. TD Jakes Disses Preachers Of LA
  13. Strange Fire Conference: Preachers or Witch Doctors?
  14. church oh church1
  15. Debating with theologians and preachers and their somewhat constricted views….
  16. Can Faith Ever Be Rational?
  17. Political Correctness and “Bashing”
  18. The one religion that’s not part of my spiritual quest
  19. Word Power
  20. The Right To Be Wrong About Everything
  21. A Satisfied Spirit Fears Not

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  • Is the Megachurch the New Liberalism? (blackchristiannews.com)
    The emergence of the megachurch as a model of metropolitan ministry is one of the defining marks of evangelical Christianity in the United States. Megachurches — huge congregations that attract thousands of worshipers — arrived on the scene in the 1970s and quickly became engines of ministry development and energy.
    Over the last 40 years, the megachurch has made its presence known, often dominating the Christian landscape within the nation’s metropolitan regions. The megachurch came into dominance at the same time that massive shopping malls became the landmarks of suburban consumer life. Sociologists can easily trace the rise of megachurches within the context of America’s suburban explosion and the development of the technologies and transportation systems that made both the mall and the megachurch possible.
  • Joel Osteen’s message of hope connects faithful, churches (ocregister.com)
    Osteen, senior pastor of the 50,000-strong Lakewood Church in Houston and nicknamed “the Smiling Preacher” for his toothy grin, travels with a crew of 30. Many in the audience Friday seemed to connect with the preacher’s observations, delivered in a lyrical Texan drawl, his interpretation of Scriptures and most of all, his positive energy.During his sermon, Osteen drew quite a bit from personal experience in his message about “redeeming time,” or making the most of our time in this world. He broke down as he talked about his mother’s valiant and victorious fight against liver cancer. He reminisced about the first time he met Victoria, his wife of 27 years, at a jewelry store while shopping for a watch battery.He told how the tragic death of his father, John Osteen, who founded the church at the back of an old feed store with 90 members, pushed a behind-the scenes guy into the limelight – as a preacher. In the last 15 years, Osteen has grown a congregation of 6,000 to the nation’s largest megachurch.
  • Has the Megachurch Lost Its Luster? (juicyecumenism.com)
    In the future, the 1990s and early 2000s may well be called the “Megachurch Era” by ecclesiastical historians. Suburban commuter culture, television broadcasting, the Internet, the book publishing industry, the rise of self-help gurus, digital media technology, and the contemporary sounds of Jesus People music all provided essential ingredients for enormous churches with a plethora of programs. All that the ingredients needed were men with the vision, initiative, and charisma to muster together like-minded individuals for a common purpose: planting, building, and increasing a congregation (well beyond the previous conceptions of a “large congregation”).
  • Huge Money Stolen From MegaChurch, But That’s Not The OMG Moment (crooksandliars.com)
    The Young Turk’s Cenk Uygur discusses the recent robbery at Joel Osteen’s megachurch, and the incredible amount of money they’re raking in there every single week.
  • How to Run a Megachurch: T.D. Jakes, Marvin Winans, and Others Provide an Inside Look (blackchristiannews.com)
    On just about any Sunday, as many as 10,000 people may fill the pews of Bishop T.D. Jakes’ Dallas-area megachurch. Some believers say he has an uncanny way of connecting with his audience anyway.

    “It doesn’t matter about the size,” says Faith Johnson, a 13-year member. “It’s almost like nobody else is in that church, but me.”
    It takes some help for leaders of the largest megachurches and national ministries to make believers reject the idea that a smaller church is more intimate and personable. A big staff of associate pastors and elders is indispensable.
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    Pastor Matthew Cork knew he’d have to rely more on his leadership when his nearly 6,000-member Friends Church in Yorba Linda, Calif., committed to building 200 schools in India over the next 10 years for dalit children, who are part of the country’s lowest caste. He’s also promoting a book and movie about the number of dalits who end up being trafficked as sex slaves.
    “We have a teaching team, so I’m not teaching every week, which gives me freedom to do some of the other things that I do,” said Cork, who speaks about twice a month at his church. “It’s worked great for me and my schedule.”
  • Fort Lauderdale Megachurch Pastor Resigns Over ‘Moral Failing’ (miami.cbslocal.com)
    “Bob Coy resigned as Senior Pastor of Calvary Chapel Fort Lauderdale, effective immediately, after confessing to a moral failing in his life…Pastor Bob will be focusing his full attention on his personal relationship with God and his family. The governing board of the church is providing counselors and ministers who will help guide him through the process of full repentance, cleansing and restoration.”+
    “There should have been more accountability at Calvary Chapel,” he says.  “Pastor Bob shouldn’t have been put on such a high pedestal and he should have never had so much power. Whenever there is that, it’s a formula for disaster.”The popular church boasts over 20,000 members, has 10 campuses, and 1,000 employees.“You know he did a lot of good,” said Mitch Guertler a church member. “He helped out a lot of people and I’m just really sad but like he always said up on stage—don’t follow him, follow Christ. So, you know, he’s a sinner like the rest of us and it’s just too bad.”
  • Arguing over trifles while the world burns: Megachurch pays millions to leave nation’s biggest Presbyterian denomination – major rift over ‘Who Jesus is’ (sott.net)
    A California megachurch has voted to officially leave the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), a Christian denomination that is the largest in the nation.Menlo Park Presbyterian Church in Menlo Park, Calif., one of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s largest congregations, made the choice despite facing a $8.89 million cost for the church’s property and membership fees, Religion News Service reported.With 4,000 members, including former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Menlo Park’s decision is a major development in the lifecycle of a denomination that continues to experience ideological infighting over its more liberal stances on controversial issues.
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    In a document published by Menlo Park last year, leaders described their reasons for seeking a split with Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.), noting that the church’s “evangelical identity around who Jesus is and our understanding of the authority of scripture are increasingly out of alignment” with the denomination as a whole.

    Specifically, the church expressed concern that many Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) leaders do not believe in the deity of Jesus, nor do they embrace salvation through Christ. These are central tenets of most mainstream Christian churches, leading to a difficult ideological splintering.

  • Amazingly Elaborate Hoax Targets Megachurch Pastor (newser.com)
    Somebody has put a massive amount of work into a hoax claiming that pastor Joel Osteen has renounced his faith and is resigning from the Texas megachurch his father founded, the Houston Chronicle reports. The hoax includes a fake Twitter feed, a YouTube video from “ChristianityNews” containing mockups of news websites trumpeting Osteen’s loss of faith, and a fake website that looks similar to the pastor’s own site.
  • Dallas Megachurch To Encourage ‘Tweeting’ For Jesus During Sermons (dfw.cbslocal.com)
    You could call it “facebooking” for Jesus. One North Texas mega-church could soon be encouraging its congregants to keep their cell-phones on instead of turning them off during Sunday service.
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    “We have a pretty young congregation — the median age is 33 — and so many of them I deal with them on social media as much as I do in presence of them,” says Liberatore. “I just think this is a different way for people to connect with each other, to share their faith — and I think Jesus would make use of it.”
  • Study: Megachurches can trigger false spiritual highs (alanrudnick.org)
    worshipers at megachurches experience a greater release of oxytocin, thought to add to a sense of euphoria. That would lead us to believe that these types of megachurch worship experiences can trigger a false sense of a spiritual high.
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    like a rock concert, there is a degree of psychological multiplication that can be added with a shared emotional experience with light shows, loud music, and a celebrity presence. Perhaps megachurches can add this additional element to worship that causes this “spiritual high”.
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    So, is the spiritual high that Christians experience in worship just a chemical response or is it a part of the worship of God? Does worship in a megachurch lend more to a shared emotional or perceived than other types of Christian styled worship?
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