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If there is a heaven, what is the point of our world?

Discussion in 'Salvation (Soteriology)' started by Marc Perry, Oct 17, 2020.

  1. Marc Perry

    Marc Perry Member

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    The question speaks for itself.
     
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  2. d taylor

    d taylor Well-Known Member

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    So there will be a place for Gods creation to live.
     
  3. timothyu

    timothyu Well-Known Member

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    God had to put His rebellious creation somewhere to contain them after banishment from the Garden. We are in an asylum because we refuse to put His will ahead of our own and learn how to respect all others instead of serving self. What would happen if the cancer that is man were to run amok in Heaven. Be content with the chance we will have at a new Kingdom for those willing to comply.
     
  4. Jeshu

    Jeshu Bought by His Blood Supporter

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    For us to learn our lesson and reap the rewards of our deeds there is both hell and Heaven. This world is a training ground. Those who persevere to the end, loving and serving the Lord, will reap a great reward, and those who never get any further than their own big I will cease to be a problem and get in the habit of gnashing their teeth and biting their tongue.

    About those who learn love the Lord their God.

    1 Corinthians 2:9 "However, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived”— the things God has prepared for those who love him—"

    And to those who failed the test!
    Luke 13:28
    "There will be weeping there, and gnashing of teeth, when you see Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and all the prophets in the kingdom of God, but you yourselves thrown out.
     
  5. Sabertooth

    Sabertooth Repartee Animal: Quipping the Saints! Supporter

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    If Heaven is an unsettled question for you, why did you become a Christian?
     
  6. Aussie Pete

    Aussie Pete Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The physical earth is God's battleground. The war is between God and Satan for the allegiance of mankind. God had a number of reasons to create Adam, one of which was to bring Satan under control. Satan turned the tables and man became his captive. God knew this would happen. Lord Jesus became the Last Adam (last because there is no need for another now) and defeated Satan in every way. Those who join themselves to Christ are potential warriors in the battle. Lord Jesus told us to preach the gospel of the Kingdom, not just an escape route from hell. So the majority of Christians are effectively non-combatants. There are still enough fighting to ensure that Satan's demise is not far away.

    My suggestion is to get into the fight. No one gives prizes to spectators. Medals are awarded to those who fight. The more who get into the battle, the shorter Satan's time will be.
     
  7. A_Thinker

    A_Thinker Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Experience of good and evil, recruitment, boot-camp ... and battle.

    I don't think that Earth is the last battleground.

    I imagine that the was against evil is eternal ...
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
  8. public hermit

    public hermit social troglodyte Supporter

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    Irenaeus once considered a similar question: Why weren't humans created perfect from the beginning? His answer is basically that the creature cannot be "Uncreated" (i.e. the same as God), and therefore begins imperfect and must be brought to perfection through a process of (spiritual) growth.

    CHURCH FATHERS: Against Heresies, IV.38 (St. Irenaeus)

    We might think of this world as a "vale of soul-making." We are being prepared for existence in the presence of Perfect Love. One does not just waltz into the divine presence, but must be prepared, the Incarnation being a key part of that preparation. He became like us so that we might become like him.

    Of course, this won't answer every possible question that relates to this issue. We might wonder why the angels didn't need a similar process, if in fact they didn't. But, this ignorance, itself, might be a key part of the process. Ignorance means we must act in faith, and faith (trust) might also be key to existence in the presence of the divine. All that being said, who knows? ;)
     
  9. UnpopularOpinion

    UnpopularOpinion New Member

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    The point of this world is so there can exist more than just 1 man .
     
  10. tdidymas

    tdidymas Newbie

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    I once heard from someone that he believed that in heaven all that happens in this life will be forgotten. My response was, "then what's the reason for the exercise?"

    Rom. 8:29 says "For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren."

    So one may surmise that God is developing spiritual people who will be faithful to His will (and willingly), as opposed to angels who went against God's will and permanently vilified themselves. Yet, this cannot be the whole story, and therefore one cannot surmise from this that all here will be forgotten.

    The point of remembering the past and all its evil, calamity, affliction, and sin, in addition to the grace, goodness, fellowship and all the positive events of life, is to praise God for all eternity by appreciating His kindness toward us, "To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the beloved" (Eph. 1:6).

    And there is likely much more to this.
    TD:)
     
  11. Marc Perry

    Marc Perry Member

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    I was just exploring more philosophically. If God knows who will be good and evil, then why not just start the good people in Heaven and not even create the evil people to begin with?
     
  12. Marc Perry

    Marc Perry Member

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    I heard the name John Calvin a million times, so I read through his Wikipedia article and it mentioned his views on predestination. That might have been where I got this thought, but I'm not sure. I think, viewed through Calvin's eyes, his logic does makes sense but naturally leads to this question.

    On pure speculation ... God is all knowing, but he is also all powerful. So is he powerful enough to make himself not know something? This could be argued that he would do this so his wrath would not fall prematurely and everyone would get a chance and retain their free will. So, again on pure speculation, he did create this world as a type of heaven, not actually knowing that Adam and Eve would fall. Or even Satan and his angels before that...
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
  13. Kenny'sID

    Kenny'sID Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Boot Camp, so to speak. Or a filtration process.

    We are put here in this world, given an opportunity, and a set of rules to abide by. Those who make the grade get to level up to a much better world.
     
  14. Kenny'sID

    Kenny'sID Well-Known Member Supporter

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    And there ya' go.
     
  15. fhansen

    fhansen Oldbie

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    That’s a very good question. This world, this exile from Eden, is a teacher, of wisdom, ultimately. It can teach us what life is like apart from God, with the Master gone away for all practical purposes. It’s the world Adam “wanted”, or won for himself and humanity in any case because it’s a world where man’s will reigns, for better or worse. And there’s much here that is worse, as a result of this brave new world autonomous from God. The specter of physical death, itself, cuts us off in a final way from knowing our own fates. We can go through the motions of life here, seeking happiness in worldly offerings and acting as if we know what’s going on but at the end of the day we’re truly lost, not knowing where we came from, if anywhere, why were here, if for anything, and where we’re going, if anywhere. The world is really just a giant slaughterhouse-without faith, that is.

    And faith is exactly the first thing Adam gave up when he chose to believe lies over truth, the truth about who God is vs who man is. By his act of disobedience Adam spurned and rejected God, as his God. From then on Adam had no God above him; man was now his own “god”. But that meant man was now cut of from any higher knowledge that he’s lost without, from the direct and personal “knowledge of God”, the knowledge that Jesus came to reveal and restore when the time was ripe. This knowledge is referred to in the New Covenant prophecy of Jer 31:34 as well as John 17:3:
    Now this is eternal life: that they know you,the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.”

    Man was made for communion with God. He’s sick, wounded, asleep, lost, dead without it. The fall resulted in what is sometimes called the “death of the soul”, the reason man must be “born again”. “Apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5

    So, as we become jaded with this worlds offerings and knowledge and the genuine good that creation has to offer, we may come to understand the truth of those words that Jesus spoke. We may come to know that a world without God is not enough, especially as we also experience the flip side. Here we experience, we literally know, both good and evil, that knowledge being the fruit of the tree that Adam ate of, the fruit of disobedience of God, an act of pride where Adam “preferred himself to God”, as one teaching I’m familiar with put it. The Hebrew word for knowledge in the Genesis account of the Fall is most often used for knowledge gained directly, viscerally, by experience.

    So the evil that we know here, the sin with all the harm it causes large and small, the pain and suffering, and ultimately the corruption and death that face us all and threaten to make life ultimately pointless, meaningless, futile- that make it hopeless- can have the effect of driving us to look for something to hope in, for higher truth in a lost and dying world. We can develop a hunger and thirst for justice and righteousness in a world where those values are so often trod upon.

    We may learn to truly value love in a world that so sorely lacks it, when it’s shown to us especially and most dramatically in the person, in the words and deeds, of Jesus Christ. We may learn of our need for God so that, when He’s revealed, man may finally turn back to Him in faith, which establishes a relationship that begins here and is fully consummated in the next life, a relationship which entails hope/trust, and, ultimately and most importantly, love. As we come to know and love God, we approach our purpose and perfection, our teleios. Then justice and righteousness and order are being restored to God’s creation. And this is why the Greatest Commandment is what it is. Had Adam been capable of that love in Eden, his obedience would’ve flowed naturally. Instead he, along with the rest of us, had to learn of its value, and the means of achieving it, the hard way, in a world such as ours.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
  16. Marc Perry

    Marc Perry Member

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    Can you justify that more? He can just instantly poof the evil away. It's not like he needs the battle. There has to be more to the argument.
     
  17. Rachel20

    Rachel20 Active Member

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    Maybe God is using man to teach a cosmic lesson that will carry into eternity, perhaps preventing any future rebellions (by angel, man, or future creation)? I think he used Israel in the OT in a similar way, much like a skit being played out before the nations, and in the process teaching them about God. Just fun speculation though.
     
  18. Marc Perry

    Marc Perry Member

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    The wisdom argument is a really good point and not something I had thought of. Well done!

    There is still the predestination argument to work through, though. Which I mentioned in my own response. Do you have any perspectives on that?
     
  19. Kenny'sID

    Kenny'sID Well-Known Member Supporter

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    It's all about free will.

    Poofing the evil out of people can be done in a snap, but then God ends up with a bunch of wind up toys...where's the fun in that?

    God wants people who think for themselves, and "choose" to do good, people with hearts and minds, not a bunch of robots.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
  20. fhansen

    fhansen Oldbie

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    Yes, and I was thinking of expanding on that issue since the two are related-but I was already quite wordy in that last post. There really isn't any reason for this particular world unless the will of man is involved in some manner or another-in working out his salvation here-with the help of grace. In a way this world is a sort of half-way house between heaven and hell, a reprieve from the eternal death that Adam should've earned by his sin. Sin, of any kind, is a gross anomaly in creation, a disorder, something that "should not be", something outside of and opposed to God's will.

    But, of course, God foreknew this and already had a plan in place, deeming it worthwhile to create in spite of the evil he knew would result from man's abuse of his free will, free will being a good gift to us. God, alone, is capable of bringing an even greater good at the end of the day out of the evil that resulted. In the big picture He actually made His world in a "state of journeying to perfection" as one teaching I'm familiar with put it. But that perfection naturally involves creation-us-getting on board with and aligned with His perfect will. Anyway, classical teachings I'm familiar with never totally exclude man's will; the concept of predestination is qualified such that it incorporates man's choices as foreknown by God, excluding strict determinism. Anyway, rather than repeating even more words all over again my recent response to this question is in post #181 here:
    Once saved always saved. False?
    And also post #150 here:
    Once saved always saved. False?
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2020
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