Certain Catholics claiming that the power of the priest is equal to that of Jesus Christ

Unbelievable what we encountered to day at some websites to which was reacted, by repeating it

The power of the priest is equal to that of Jesus Christ.

At the particular website (reacting to it) they also quote some text where it is said that

the priest, reaches up into heaven, and brings Christ down from his throne and places Him upon our alter to be offered up again as the victim for the sins of man. {Catholic Mass vs Biblical Salvation}

We never would think people could be so pretentious to think they have more power than Jesus and can bring him down form heaven.  Though it looks like the people writing at that website sincerely mean what they are writing. Even when they think Jesus is God they think they have so much power, not to say even more power, than their god, able to bring him down and to be equal to their god. They even go so far to consider it possible and righteous that their god would bow down for them.

The priest brings Christ down from heaven and renders him present on our alter as the eternal victim for the sins of man….not once, but a thousand times. Christ, the eternal omnipotent God, bows his head in humble obedience to the catholic priest. {Catholic Mass vs Biblical Salvation}

They even have no scruples to say

Lets compare this breathtaking scenario to what the bible says;

Who needeth daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins and then for the people, for this he did ONCE, when He offered up Himself. {Catholic Mass vs Biblical Salvation}

They do seem to miss the point that it was man, Jesus Christ, who offered himself up. they, who take Jesus as their God, do not seem to understand what it meant for Jesus not to do his own will, but to do the will of his heavenly Father, the God of Abraham, Who is a singular eternal Spirit.

Though they themselves quote the Bible saying

But this MAN, after He had offered one sacrifice for the sins of man forever, sat down at the right hand of God forever. {Catholic Mass vs Biblical Salvation}

They do not seem to see nor understand that Jesus is now made higher than angels, having been lower than angels before, and now been taken up into the heavens to sit next to God and not in God His place, not having taken over from God but been authorised to act in the name of God, like he was authorised before here on earth.

They also seem to miss the point that

11But when Christ came as high priest of the good things that have come, He entered the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made by hands (that is, not of this creation).

They also seem to miss the point of Jeremiah writing down that this sent one from God was going to cleanse the world from all its iniquity by which man have sinned against the Most High Elohim, and that it is the Most High Divine Maker Who will pardon all their iniquities by which they have sinned against Him and by which they have transgressed against God. {Jeremiah 33:8}

It is incredible that those Catholic priests may think they are able to be equal to Christ who appeared as a high priest of the good things to come and entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation. {Hebrews 9:11}

 

They may think that in their temples or churches, made with human hands, they have a building from God, but they do forget The God does not like to see any graven images of Him nor other gods where people bow in front of them or which are worshipped.  How then can their church be a temple for or of God?

We do know they like their churches decorated with saints and so called religious pictures.

The richness of the atmosphere, packed as the building is, with imagery of biblical scenes and saints, both oil paintings and murals, together with vast amounts of gold and silver (in colour, but I suspect real metal too, in leaf form), and the music – taken together it overwhelmed me. {Being Catholic}

writes Struans.

They are proud to have a

Romanish practice of bringing down Christ from heaven to sacrifice him again and again in order to relieve those in attendance from their sins means the Romanish religion says that Christs sacrifice on Calvary wasn’t enough.

but do not seem to fully understand the implications of them not accepting that Jesus ransom offering would not be good enough for God and that they as priest can make such better offerings each time over and over again.

Though he considers that priests are also Christs who can equally forgive sins (forgetting that it was not Jesus who forgave sins but his heavenly Father). He further writes

Cultural conditioning did not stop Our Lord from doing anything during His incarnation on earth nor has the Holy Spirit moved the Church to change what Christ established in His male-only priesthood. That which was begun in the OT Church and perfected in His NT Church is the Will of the Father and instituted by Christ Himself. {The Male Priesthood: Culturally Conditioned?}

Philip Augustine writes

we, the Charity of Christ do not invent our own faith–which is what someone is doing with “I” statements. We receive it from God, and we do so through the Church that Christ founded. Many will reject this sentiment, but it is because just like the Hebrews in the desert calling to go back to Pharaoh, they prefer the chains of slavery–the chains of the world–rather than the liberation of the God the Father Almighty.

On which Jamie Carter reacts

Jesus chose twelve men, mostly from around the Galilee, mostly fisherman, though one was a tax collector and a doctor, I think. They were all Jewish. If you’re saying that because Jesus chose men that only men may serve as priests, then you need to remember that he chose Jewish Galileans who spoke with distinctive accents. If you’re saying it’s not necessary that priests be Jewish Galileans with accents, then I’d agree that it’s not necessary that they be men either.

Grandpa Zeke finds

to insist that the priesthood is limited to males, as the Catholic Church does, is not limiting the power of God’s word and is possible to implement, no matter the ethnicity or language of the priest.

God himself differentiates between men and women, in Genesis 2 for instance. It might be worth a re-read of Gen 2 in light of this discussion. This does not demean women, it merely faces the reality, both physically and spiritual, that God created men and women equally in His image, but different. (We are not all clones of each other, every individual human being is different and still a child of God made in his image.)

But the priests also made in the image of God may not consider themselves to be Christs nor to be equal to Christ and most of all certainly not to be equal to God.

The Three Ages of the Interior Life - Volume 2 - Reverend Reginald Garrigou-Lagrange O.P._html_57ca4d8e

 

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Additional reading

  1. When not seeing or not finding a biblically sound church
  2. Which Christian sect is the only true Christian church?
  3. Not everyone in the churches of Christ are “ungodly”
  4. Church has to grow through witness, not by proselytism
  5. Hello America and atheists
  6. Engaging the enemy

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Further reading

  1. Who Is Melchizedek | Bible Question
  2. Jesus Christ’s High Priesthood was of the Order of Melchizedek
  3. Gospel Doctrine 2017 – Lesson 25: Priesthood: “The Power of Godliness”
  4. Responses to Jesus Christ’s High Priesthood
  5. What is your vocation?
  6. “Lord Jesus, Grant Us More Priests!” – Homily by Fr. Nathan
  7. Ordinations, or the lack thereof – an update
  8. Ordinations: Good men so happy to be of service to the Holy Family
  9. Are All Christians Priests? The Biblical Evidence for Priests Separate from the Laity
  10. Jesus & triple-taps on a priest’s day off
  11. Catholic Priest By the Side of Congressman Scalise
  12. Ye Shall Have Power – Moroni 2:2
  13. The Branch — Zechariah 6.
  14. A Friar Life: Fr. Joe
  15. original therapy
  16. Abram and Lot Part
  17. What a difference a year makes…
  18. Priestly Ordination of Deacon Dennis
  19. Prophets have Melchizedek Priesthood
  20. Lines of Authority
  21. Jesus Overthrows a Corrupt Priesthood
  22. This Catholic priest’s Glock 19 target practice: Rope swinging video
  23. A Royal Priesthood?
  24. Saturday Sermon and a Special Mass
  25. Bruce R. McConkie Explains The Revelation On The Priesthood
  26. What Will Endure?
  27. Men Raised Up
  28. “The Latin Mass Has Made Me a Better Priest.”
  29. Healings, Heroes, and Heartaches
  30. Baptist Church Problems with Race
  31. Congratulations to Newly Ordained Priests
  32. 7 7 7 – Summorum Pontificum: the 10th anniversary in Lourdes. “Just wear dental guards, Father George!”
  33. A Heroic Priesthood 
  34. BBC’s #Broken: 5 things it revealed about Christianity and Faith
  35. The search for shephers: Challenges
  36. Voices and Faith of Women
  37. Women and the Priesthood
  38. She’s my vicar
  39. Sustaining Church Leaders
  40. Famous Exorcist Fr. Gabriele Amorth on How ‘Smoke’ of the Devil Entered the Church

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a Place to discuss religious matters and Christadelphianism

“The proportion of the population who identify as having no religion – referred to as ‘nones’ – reached 48.5% in 2014, almost double the figure of 25% in the 2011 census. Those who define themselves as Christian – Anglicans, Catholics and other denominations – made up 43.8% of the population.” {People of no religion outnumber Christians in England and Wales – study}

wrote the Guardian in May 2016.

No only is it escalating on the Western Islands of Europe, it is a significant phenomenon all over the capitalist European continent. Even the growing Muslim population may not yet outweigh the atheist population in Europe.

People who were brought up with some religion now saying they have no religion at all. They dare to come out for it though in countries like Belgium lots of them though not believing still want to have a participation of the pagan/Christian feasts and celebrate ‘first communion’, ‘second communion’, Easter, Halloween, Christmas and some even other religious connected celebrations.

Religiosity is something where many today only want to talk about in the shade are in the darkness of the night. It is not a subject for a common open discussion in full day light.

The Belgian Christadelphians their electronic mail box though is often full of letters, people having questions about the same things. Them not reacting on our postings on our article platforms, makes that we, each time have to reply them personally and manually, which is a time consuming situation.

For those people who have no faith in God or who our doubting about religion we started a Forum, where all are welcome to discuss matters around religion, faith, how to make the best out of life, how to react on present situations, etc.

We do hope many may find the forum to make use of it. To get it going you are invited to contribute to it also and to bring subjects in the picture.

You may find the Forum on the Message Board Yuku, from a server in the United States of America under the name: Christadelphian

 

Christadelphian Forum (started August 2016)

Christadelphian Forum (started August 2016)

Please do find the following opening articles

  1. Welcome to Christadelphian
  2. Places of interest to get more knowledge about God
  3. Places of interest to get more knowledge about God
  4. Christadelphian a Christian
  5. A god, The God and gods
  6. How do you look at religion
  7. What or which god are you looking at and going for and who or what do you want to worship
  8. Christianity and Religiosity in Europe

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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.

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.
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    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.
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    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.

 

Being Religious and Spiritual 1 Immateriality and Spiritual experience

According to a response on “Focus on outward appearances” some people might be confusing religiousness and spirituality with “having good faith in God“, with that God being the Divine Creator of heaven and earth.

spirituality shelf

spirituality shelf (Photo credit: professor megan)

Spirituality, which has not at all its origins in Christianity, is as old as the street, is a striking aspect of our contemporary times and stands in stark contrast to the decline in traditional religious belonging in the West.  Spirituality is about the quality of being spiritual and comes from the Old French “espiritualte, espirituaute”, variants of “spiritualite”, from Late Latin “spiritualitatem” (see spirituality). It was the church in the late 14th century  early 15th century made it to something which only could belong to “the clergy“. For the clergyman it was impossible that an other person than a qualified priest could know something about the spirit, the spiritual or spiritual life. for them spirituality became “ecclesiastical property; things pertaining to the Church“. The seldom-used sense of “fact or condition of being a spirit” is from 1680s.

The spirituality could mean or concern the immaterial, immaterialityincorporeality, otherworldliness, unearthliness. Spirituality can be the condition or quality of being spiritual but also the state or quality of being dedicated to a god or to the God, religion, or spiritual things or values, especially as contrasted with material or temporal ones. It is the involvement in an inner exploration of the meaning of the existence and the relation to the universe. To quote Random House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary (2nd ed., 1997), spiritualism is an

“attitude or principle that inspires, animates, or pervades thought, feeling, or action,”

Spiritualism in philosophy is a characteristic of any system of thought that affirms the existence of immaterial reality imperceptible to the senses.

English: University library of Nijmegen: Encyc...

At the University library of Nijmegen a world of knowledge is available to the visitors. With the Encyclopædia Britannica people can start their quest in Spirituality and mind awareness. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to the Encyclopaedia Britannica:

So defined, spiritualism embraces a vast array of highly diversified philosophical views. Most patently, it applies to any philosophy accepting the notion of an infinite, personal God, the immortality of the soul, or the immateriality of the intellect and will. Less obviously, it includes belief in such ideas as finite cosmic forces or a universal mind, provided that they transcend the limits of gross Materialistic interpretation. Spiritualism as such says nothing about matter, the nature of a supreme being or a universal force, or the precise nature of spiritual reality itself. {Encyclopaedia Britannica, Micropaedia  Vol IX, p429, 15th edition,1974, 1980}

We may accept that it is the willingness of a person to take the attitude in his or her mind to have a broad sweep in thought, feeling, and practice, all pointing to the inner, subjective world of the spiritual being, the essence of live and the relationship of the human being with its environment, cosmos, plants, animals and different organisms.

It would be totally wrong to base it on an a priori theological standpoint, because it is rooted in the human search, in experimentation, questioning and exploring which existed already long before the theologians where born.

In the very old religions there was already long before Christ interest in the “dharma” meaning the “cosmic law and order” our relation in nature and to each other. The word Dharm means the “path of righteousness”. It is a path many people in the world have sought for through the many ages and it is the path the Creator wants His creation to find. Millions of people wanted to get deeper into their mind and did a quest for finding their own spirit. Spiritualism may be all about that, finding your spirit.

Spiritualism was equated by some Christians wi...

Spiritualism was equated by some Christians with witchcraft. This United States 1865 broadsheet also blamed Spiritualism for causing the Civil War. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The religion Spiritualism, postulating the belief that spirits of the dead residing in the spirit world have both the ability and the inclination to communicate with the living is something totally different. In the 19th century tension between the fanciful and the logical was made explicit, though journals denounced spiritualist beliefs in the supernatural, including “the whole business of mediums and seances”. People wanted to see how far they could go in the extremes of human folly, and if it would be possible to come in contact with people who lived previously. At the end of the previous century more Western people came in contact with Buddhism where there is the believe that we reincarnate after we die. such idea makes the people afraid of their present attitude because they know in case they are not behaving well they will reincarnate in a lower being to have a horrible life.

By the years people got convinced they could not escape the same inevitable destiny, of loosing our life. Death is something nobody can escape. We shall all die one day and many do want to know what happens when we die. They want to know if there is an afterlife and how it looks like.

By the end of the 20th Century, many had become dissatisfied with the Christian Church, especially the Roman Catholics, and had found they had many dogmatic teachings which were not in accordance with what was written in their Holy books, the Bible. Because this life did not seem to be able to bring the reasonable answers for the future, and not making them to come to full happiness, the hope to have more opportunities to grow until full happiness could be reached, looked the solution.  Believing in an afterlife for many meant believing in something which makes our lives more meaningful. With the years more people started believing again, like the ancestors in the early times in life after death and renowned spiritual mediums also talk about reincarnation and the existence of spirit world.

Also the branch of Spiritualism developed by Allan Kardec Spiritism, today found mostly in continental Europe and Latin America, especially Brazil, emphasising reincarnation is something totally different than Spirituality where people search for “the sacred“. That special thing which is “set-apart”, “holy” or “sacred” can be broadly defined as that which is set apart from the ordinary and worthy of veneration,

“a transcendent dimension within human experience…discovered in moments in which the individual questions the meaning of personal existence and attempts to place the self within a broader ontological context.” {Saucier 2007.}

Religion may be considered as

“the feelings, acts, and experiences of individual men in their solitude, so far as they apprehend themselves to stand in relation to whatever they may consider the divine.”

like the American psychologist William James (1842–1910) distinguished this personal, experiential element ”spirituality” within religion from the

“theologies, philosophies, and ecclesiastical organizations [that] may secondarily grow up” around the experience ([1902] 1985, p. 31).

Viewing religion broadly as a transcendent and often transforming experience, he left open the form of the experience itself and the devotional object at the centre of that experience. Being religious is being considered to adhere a form of religion. This is not only restricted to the Christian belief like so many think. Shamanists, Hindus, and Muslims may be even more religious than many Christians are. 20th  and 21st century surveys prove many Christians are less religious than people from other religions. Buddhists, Sophrologists, Confucians and other eastern philosophical religions are more religious and much more spiritual than the sec Christian counterparts. For many Christians there is not at all a reason to go deeper in the mind of the self For many Christians spirituality is certainly not the primary and motivating quality of their religion.

Whether the religion in question, is organized or of movement status or mostly individual; and whether it involves God, Allah, the Supreme High Being, the God of gods, Jehovah, Yahweh, other gods or other-than-human guides and spirits, or the centre of the Self, or an almighty Nature or the Almighty Most High, or an Ideal held to be worth living or dying for, it often concerns looking for a special situation of the self, a Nirvana, Cosmic Consciousness, Christ Consciousness, the Void and a spiritual inner, experiential aspect of being not bounded by a specific Christian religion. It is a general region of awareness within which people of all sorts of denominations or religion may experience, not just think about, a higher power, the absolute, with whatever title or name they may be willing to give to that higher substance, or whatever label is used for that which is not an object but which instead forms the undivided ground of all being (Huxley). Spirituality can also refer to actions arising from such spiritual experiences, the human being looking into the matter of the immaterial.

The spirituality is the willingness to come to think about the matters of the universe and to engage one self in practices that heighten the possibility of spiritual experiences. In addition, those who experience spiritual levels of consciousness often feel called to serve, and spiritually rooted service takes many forms.

Spiritual experience can occur at several levels: physical, emotional, cognitive, and transcendent. Spirituality is a quality that can infuse experience in a wide variety of settings. Spiritual experience can be both transcendent and immanent: it can be both an experience of transcending worldly concerns and an intense present-moment perception that the ground of all being permeates all things. The essence of spirituality is an intense aliveness and deep sense of understanding that one intuitively comprehends as having come from a direct, internal link with that mysterious principle which connects all aspects of the universe.

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To be continued with: Being Religious and Spiritual 2 Religiosity and spiritual life

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Read also:

  1. Living in faith
  2. Self-development, self-control, meditation, beliefs and spirituality
  3. Religion and spirituality
  4. Theology without spirituality sterile academic exercise
  5. Childish or reasonable ways
  6. Words to push and pull
  7. To mean, to think, outing your opinion, conviction, belief – Menen, mening, overtuiging, opinie, geloof
  8. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
  9. Making church
  10. Church sent into the world
  11. Women, conservative evangelicals and their counter-offensive
  12. Cosmos creator and human destiny
  13. Immortality, eternality – onsterfelijkheid, eeuwigheid
  14. A concrete picture of what is to come in the future
  15. Happiness is like manna
  16. Happiness an inner state

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Additional reading:

  1. Is spirituality a passing trend? by Philip Sheldrake
  2. Spiritualism in The Saturday Review and The Princess and The Goblin
  3. Dealing with the inevitable
  4. Possibility of reincarnation?

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  • Research For Spirituality (f1mediaconcepts.wordpress.com)
    We asked a range of students what spirituality meant to them. The most popular responses included these phrases: 

    • Rest for your mind
    • Time to think things through.
    • Values and morals.
    • Inner self
    • Mind and soul
    • Sense of freedom and expression.
    • Religious beliefs and having faith in something
    • Ghosts
    • Afterlife

    +
    Another character we look to include is a religious one. We aim to show the religious aspects of spirituality through the means of this character. There are many angles that can be taken on this, but we have chosen to focus on the Christian lifestyle. We feel that this will be the easiest to convey and understand due to the fact that the majority of people in Coventry are of Christian faith  (53.7%) http://www.facts-about-coventry.com/uploaded/documents/Census 2011 Briefing – Religion.pdf (2011 consensus). By applying core values and beliefs of Christian spirituality we will develop the character and a narrative about how they react to outside stimulus. This reaction will also contribute to how we create generic conventions of the Structured reality genre. This is due to the fact that these types of documentaries are structured around drama and conflict. These conflicts will exist between the outside stimulus, other’s values and this character’s values.

  • Spirituality is a way of life (aaaglass.wordpress.com)
    Spirituality is not about a religion. Neither is it about gods and rituals. Spirituality is the ability to see  the spirit of the creator in everything around us , be it a flower or a stone. And then to act and behave accordingly. We come to this earth to live our lives, fulfill the purpose of life as we evolve, learn and teach others through our existence and then move on to another from of life as we go back to our creator. May I am not spiritual as I would like to be. But one thing is certain – I am not a religious. For me Spirituality is a principled way of life; it’s an attitude. There are a dozen attributes to life, to building a positive attitude, embedded in the very word ‘Spirituality’. Let me walk you through each letter of the word ‘spirituality’ (As mentioned in one of  the article of Rajashree Birla published in TOI).
  • Immaterial (lifeontheapex.wordpress.com)
    Just as theism contains a huge number of organized belief systems (and a potentially infinite number of unorganized belief systems), atheism, while not a belief system in itself, includes in its definition a wide variety of beliefs systems as well. A simple lack of belief does not define a philosophy, but once one has rejected theistic systems many secular options become available, including, but not limited to Rationalism, Materialism, Nihilism, Existentialism, Humanism, and secular varieties of Eastern religion such as Buddhism, Taoism, and Jainism.
    +
    Some argue that ‘atheism’ shouldn’t just indicate disbelief in gods and other spiritual entities, but a complete rejection of all things immaterial.
  • What Wishes to Come to Being through You? (agentleinstigator.wordpress.com)
    “By this age, the ego strength necessary for self-examination may have reached a level where it can reflect upon itself, critique itself, and risk altering choices, and thereby values as well.”
    +
    “Only what is experientally true is worthy of a mature spirituality… A mature spirituality will seldom provide us with answers,  and necessarily so, but will instead ask ever-larger questions of us. Larger questions will lead to larger life.”
  • Wealth usually distracts one from a spiritual path (transientreflections.com)
    Wealth and Spiritual / Religious paths rarely mixes due to the fact wealth usually distracts one from a spiritual path.
    +
    the choice is yours alone so I can not tell you which to follow nor fault you on which you choose. It is a God given gift of freewill that gives you the ability and right to choose your own path.
  • Consumerism vs Spirituality (theiamvibration.wordpress.com)
    Consumerism is a general term with different contexts and therefore slightly different meanings. In this context however, it refers to the materialistic lifestyle, concerned with the acquisition of material things through the process purchasing. In other words it is the culture of buying goods and services.
    Spirituality, likewise does not have a single set definition, because it is a culture so universal that it has a translation in every prominent lifestyle. It is the search of a greater purpose, better and healthier living, in faith of ascension to divinity. The pursuits of spirituality are immaterial in objective.
    The two are based essentially on two opposite premise, one material and one immaterial.
  • Spirituality and the Rat Race: can you maintain a spiritual focus in the 9-to-5 world? (findingtheinnerway.com)
    Can a working professional in a high-stress job maintain a consistent spiritual focus—or are the stresses of work incompatible with the contemplative life?
    +
    Everything in modern city life is calculated to keep man from entering into himself and thinking about spiritual things. Even with the best of intentions a spiritual man finds himself exhausted and deadened and debased by the constant noise of machines and loudspeakers, the dead air and the glaring lights of offices and shops.
    +
    There are some people who are perfectly capable of tasting true spiritual peace in an active life but who would go crazy if they had to keep themselves still in absolute solitude and silence for any length of time…what a hopeless thing the spiritual life would be if it could only be lived under ideal conditions.
    +
    Like all things in life, I suppose it’s about balance, about finding the happy medium between the working life and the contemplative life. It’s a fluid situation, with the demands of work ebbing and flowing—but then isn’t finding and defining our purpose in life fluid as well, a constantly moving target?
  • Paul Lenda ~ 9 Ways To Spot A Fake Guru Or Spiritual Teacher (shiftfrequency.com)
    The old paradigm of life-controlling and mind-manipulating belief systems has left many to finally realize they have been living in an artificial reality created by egotistical people on power trips. This has led to a situation where many are wandering, trying to find their own way in a world without many true leaders, and as a result of this, a new market has developed which attempts to showcase answers to those people who have become disillusioned with the old dogmatic systems.
    +
    There’s an influx of ‘enlightened masters of the universe’ pervading the spiritual sphere these days. Gurus and spiritual teachers are popping up left and right. Many of them seem to provide an easy way out of the voids many people feel they have within their lives, and as a result these gurus and teachers make a ridiculously massive amount of money… even earning social ranks akin to being glamorous superstars.
    +
    genuine spiritual teachers and self-growth coaches are often disregarded as being ‘false gurus’ giving out spiritual-sounding nonsense that lacks substance and is unhelpful for a person’s spiritual growth.
  • (#7) Family, Huh, Yeah, What Is It Good For… (bushmansblogi.wordpress.com)
    Our greatest joys and deepest sorrows are most often experienced within the context of family.
    +
    It is in the home where either a spiritual void is discovered or a spiritual direction is initiated. This is seen in experiences that families go through together and how they adapt, as well as in family traditions, and finally, even the absence of spirituality in the home aids children in determining their own beliefs.
    +
    Lack of spirituality in the home contributes in a different way, but nonetheless contributes, to children’s spiritual development. For many, they believe or don’t because their parents did or didn’t. Yet for others, as they mature they begin to recognize the spiritual void felt in their home and they seek out answers. Many children or young adults are introduced to religious matters through school, media, or friends. The lack of spirituality in their home perhaps causes them to desire it more.
  • Deep Within, We Want it All By Brenda Hoffman (renardmoreau.wordpress.com)
    For many there is an additional more personal piece. You wish to recreate some of the glories of past lifetimes. All of you have experienced both depravity, because of religious teachings, and lives with extreme levels of fame and wealth.You are now more interested in your past glories than the religious penitence that marked at least one of your lifetimes. Yet, you will not allow yourself access to the glories and riches you hold dear in this time and place because you are not certain you can achieve your goal – or that you want to.
  • Are Esoteric Teachings Missing from Christianity? (jesusweddingthebook.wordpress.com)
    In my opinion, Christianity is the only tradition that openly celebrates both spiritual paths. I can agree that there is no secret teaching, because both spiritual paths are out in the open for everyone to see. However, by definition, the esoteric teaching is the second leg of the spiritual journey. The esoteric teaching does not have to be “secret” in order to maintain its mystery. The mystery of the esoteric path can only be revealed when the exoteric path or first leg of the spiritual journey is fully completed.
  • Discovering the Truth (cosmicmacduff.wordpress.com)
    for me it has been and is the walking that is important, not any place that I might arrive at or achievement I might accomplish.  I think that I have discovered  a lot since I started, but do not consider myself “enlightened”,  just aware of who  I am.  For me this primary truth, a recognition that there was/is something  more to me (my soul)  than my physical body, is what allowed me and still allows me, to find meaning and purpose in life.
    +
    there is nothing you need outside of yourself.  Everything you need to know about yourself you already know.  Pursuing or walking a spiritual path is the way in which you will re-discover or access the truth about yourself.
  • Artists forge their own spiritual path at Promenade Gallery – Mississauga (allowinglove.wordpress.com)
    “The Art of Conscious Living,” challenges the traditional view of spiritual enlightenment through abstract paintings each coupled with poetic verse.
  • Meditation – Do try it! (trishbarcatta.wordpress.com)
    Some people find it hard to drown everything else out so as to quiet the mind, but you don’t need to do that. You can just gently bring your focus back to what you need to and not be so hard on yourself.
  • How To Begin On The Spiritual Path (anandasingapore.wordpress.com)
    The seeker cannot be confined to a particular religion, rather, he or she must embrace the Divine teachings of all religions, and bow humbly, and revere the saints of all religions, for all saints have attained to Godhood, and making any distinction within the Fundamental Unity of God is contrary to the Divine Path.
    +
    The Same Thought …
    no saint can say anything different from other saints, because the God all saints revere is the same, except that Prophets down the ages have said things in different ways according to the social circumstances of the times.
  • Am I A Religious Person? (elephantjournal.com) + But is it my religion?
    I’ve heard it said that religion is having someone else’s spiritual experience and spirituality is having your own. It’s certainly true that some Buddhists venerate the Buddha or other teachers to such a high degree that they are just having the Buddha’s experience and not their own. I don’t do that. The Buddha warned us against doing that. He said, “Don’t worship me,” and right after his death, people started doing it.

    I really don’t think the Dharma of the Buddha is a religion—at least not as I practice it.
    +
    we’ve all heard people say, “I’m spiritual but not religious.” I’ve always thought that was a little weird, but it’s probably relatively accurate.
    +
    I believe in spiritual awakening. If I have a religion, maybe spiritual awakening is what it should be called.
    +

    So I’m Told God Isn’t a Buddhist!
    In the East, there was a more pragmatic approach in dealing with reality as it presented itself. Taoism and Buddhism in particular face the real illusions of the mind with philosophies rooted in the nature of man—always geared towards finding harmony.
    +

    To define Buddhahood or Buddha as God is an impossibility as Buddhism teaches self-reliance and that every being is given the opportunity to awaken. Yet, since Buddhahood exists in all things, it really depends on how you define God. God has so many definitions, understandings and misunderstandings. And, tellingly, the gods of Buddhism must ultimately die.

    The core of religious belief is the understanding of a spiritual way to inhabit the world. Whether one uses terms such as God, Buddha, Jesus Christ or Krishna, does not change the intent. The tree is still the tree. The bird is still the bird. If you jump into a lake, you will still get wet!

  • Daily Teaching for Wednesday, November 27th (bishopcraig.com)
    Thankfulness is a practice that acknowledges that we really cannot possibly control everything that happens to us. It is therefore an expression of humility, one of the most important spiritual virtues.
    +
    Daily Teaching for Wednesday, December 4th
    Every generation believes that their children’s generation is something of a lost cause. The difference is that this time my generation just might be right.
  • Simply Being With Nothing to Be: A Commentary (edoshonin.com)
    Renunciation of unskilful attitudes and behaviours is therefore a prerequisite for entry onto the spiritual path. Many people believe that spiritual renunciation means forgetting about the world and everything we know. However, this represents a mistaken understanding because rather than forgetting about or turning one’s back on the world, true spiritual renunciation means completely surrendering oneself to, and becoming fully immersed in, the world. In order to surrender ourselves to the world we have to let go of all our attachments and all our aversions. We have to let go of hope and fear. If we harbour hopes then we leave ourselves exposed to suffering. Hope means that we are not content with the present moment and that we wish to try and change it. However, the only way to really change the present moment is to immerse ourselves fully in it – hope stops us from doing this. If we have hope, then we automatically have fear. We are fearful that our hopes will not be realized. Many people think that in order to be happy they need hope. But this kind of happiness is very conditional and is reliant upon the presence of external factors.
  • Gyo-shin-ki Evolution (gyoshinki.wordpress.com)
    We all spend a great deal of time learning techniques.
    +
    Our techniques are a utility to learning how to interact with the current situation with unified body, speech and mind. Without a deep exploration beyond the shapes, the forms and techniques are fundamentally worthless for the purpose of the art – realization and manifestation of truth.