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Riches...

Discussion in 'Ethics & Morality' started by Ricky M, Aug 28, 2019.

  1. Ricky M

    Ricky M Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Leviticus 19:13 You shall not oppress your neighbor, nor rob him. The wages of a hired man are not to remain with you all night until morning.

    Deuteronomy 8:17-18 You may say in your heart, “The power and the strength of my hand has made this wealth for me.” But remember that it is the LORD your God who gives you the power to gain wealth, in order to confirm His covenant that He swore to your fathers, as it is this day.

    Deuteronomy 24:12-15 If he is a poor man, you shall not sleep with his pledge. When the sun goes down you shall surely return the pledge to him, that he may sleep in his cloak and bless you; and it will be righteousness for you before the LORD your God. You shall not oppress a hired servant who is poor and needy, whether he is one of your countrymen or one of your aliens who is in your land in your towns.

    Deuteronomy 32:15 Jeshurun grew fat and kicked; filled with food, they became heavy and sleek. They abandoned the God who made them and rejected the Rock their Savior.

    Nehemiah 9:25-26 They captured fortified cities and a fertile land They took possession of houses full of every good thing, Hewn cisterns, vineyards, olive groves, Fruit trees in abundance So they ate, were filled and grew fat, and reveled in Your great goodness. "But they became disobedient and rebelled against You, And cast Your law behind their backs And killed Your prophets who had admonished them So that they might return to You, And they committed great blasphemies.

    Job 31:24-28 If I have put my confidence in gold, And called fine gold my trust, If I have gloated because my wealth was great, And because my hand had secured so much; If I have looked at the sun when it shone or the moon going in splendor, And my heart became secretly enticed, And my hand threw a kiss from my mouth, That too would have been an iniquity calling for judgment, For I would have denied God above.

    Job 20:17-20 He does not look at the streams, the rivers flowing with honey and curds. He returns what he has attained and cannot swallow it; As to the riches of his trading, He cannot even enjoy them. For he has oppressed and forsaken the poor; He has seized a house which he has not built. Because he knew no quiet within him, He does not retain anything he desires.

    Psalm 52:6-7 The righteous will see and fear, and will laugh at him, saying, "Behold, the man who would not make God his refuge, But trusted in the abundance of his riches And was strong in his evil desire."

    Psalm 62:10 Do not trust in oppression and do not vainly hope in robbery; If riches increase, do not set your heart upon them.

    Proverbs 11:28 He who trusts in his riches will fall, But the righteous will flourish like the green leaf.

    Proverbs 13:7-8 One pretends to be rich, but has nothing; another pretends to be poor, yet has great wealth. Riches may ransom a man’s life, but a poor man hears no threat.

    Proverbs 13:11 Dishonest wealth will dwindle, but what is earned through hard work will be multiplied.

    Proverbs 15:6 Great wealth is in the house of the righteous, but trouble is in the income of the wicked.

    Proverbs 18:11 A rich man’s wealth is his strong city, And like a high wall in his own imagination.

    Proverbs 18:23 The poor man pleads for mercy, but the rich man answers harshly.

    Proverbs 22:16 He who oppresses the poor to make more for himself or who gives to the rich, will only come to poverty.

    Proverbs 23:4-5 Do not wear yourself out to get rich; be wise enough to restrain yourself. When you glance at wealth, it disappears, for it makes wings for itself and flies like an eagle to the sky.

    Proverbs 28:11 The rich man is wise in his own eyes, But the poor who has understanding sees through him.

    Proverbs 28:20 A faithful person will be richly blessed, but one eager to get rich will not go unpunished.

    Proverbs 30:8-9 Keep deception and lies far from me, give me neither poverty nor riches; Feed me with the food that is my portion, That I not be full and deny You and say, "Who is the LORD?" Or that I not be in want and steal and profane the name of my God.

    Ecclesiastes_5:10–13 He who loves money is never satisfied by money, and he who loves wealth is never satisfied by income. This too is futile. When good things increase, so do those who consume them; what then is the profit to the owner, except to behold them with his eyes? The sleep of the worker is sweet, whether he eats little or much, but the abundance of the rich man permits him no sleep. There is a grievous evil I have seen under the sun: wealth hoarded to the harm of its owner

    Isaiah 1:23 Your rulers are rebels and companions of thieves; Everyone loves a bribe And chases after rewards. They do not defend the orphan, nor does the widow's plea come before them.

    Jeremiah 22:13 Woe to him who builds his house without righteousness And his upper rooms without justice, Who uses his neighbor's services without pay And does not give him his wages,

    Jeremiah 49:4 How boastful you are about the valleys! Your valley is flowing away, O backsliding daughter who trusts in her treasures, saying, 'Who will come against me?'

    Ezekiel 28:5 By your great wisdom, by your trade You have increased your riches and your heart is lifted up because of your riches

    Hosea 13:6 As they had their pasture, they became satisfied, and being satisfied, their heart became proud; Therefore they forgot Me.

    Micah 6:12 For the rich men of the city are full of violence, her residents speak lies, And their tongue is deceitful in their mouth.

    Haggai 1:3-5 Then the word of the LORD came by Haggai the prophet, saying, "Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?" Now therefore, thus says the LORD of hosts, "Consider your ways!

    Malachi 3:5 Then I will draw near to you for judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers and against the adulterers and against those who swear falsely, and against those who oppress the wage earner in his wages, the widow and the orphan, and those who turn aside the alien and do not fear Me," says the LORD of hosts.
     
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  2. Ricky M

    Ricky M Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Matthew 4:9-10 and he said to Him, "All these things I will give You, if You fall down and worship me." Then Jesus said to him, "Go, Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God and serve Him only’”.

    Matthew 6:24 No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.

    Matthew 13:22 And the one on whom seed was sown among the thorns, this is the man who hears the word, and the worry of the world and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

    Matthew 19:21-22Jesus said to him, "If you wish to be complete, go and sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." But when the young man heard this statement, he went away grieving; for he was one who owned much property.

    Mark 4:19 but the worries of the world, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.

    Mark 10:21-22 Looking at him, Jesus felt a love for him and said to him, "One thing you lack: go and sell all you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." But at these words he was saddened, and he went away grieving, for he was one who owned much property.

    Luke 6:20 “Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the kingdom of God. 21 Blessed are you who hunger now, for you will be satisfied. Blessed are you who weep now, for you will laugh. 22 Blessed are you when people hate you, when they exclude you and insult you and reject your name as evil, because of the Son of Man. 23 “Rejoice in that day and leap for joy, because great is your reward in heaven. For that is how their ancestors treated the prophets. 24 “But woe to you who are rich, for you have already received your comfort. 25 Woe to you who are well fed now, for you will go hungry. Woe to you who laugh now, for you will mourn and weep. 26 Woe to you when everyone speaks well of you, for that is how their ancestors treated the false prophets.

    Luke 8:14 The seed which fell among the thorns, these are the ones who have heard, and as they go on their way they are choked with worries and riches and pleasures of this life, and bring no fruit to maturity.

    Luke 12:13-21 13 Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the inheritance with me.”14 Jesus replied, “Man, who appointed me a judge or an arbiter between you?” 15 Then he said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.” 16 And he told them this parable: “The ground of a certain rich man yielded an abundant harvest. 17 He thought to himself, ‘What shall I do? I have no place to store my crops.’ 18 “Then he said, ‘This is what I’ll do. I will tear down my barns and build bigger ones, and there I will store my surplus grain. 19 And I’ll say to myself, “You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.”’ 20 “But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ 21 “This is how it will be with whoever stores up things for themselves but is not rich toward God.”

    Luke 14: 12Then Jesus said to the man who had invited Him, “When you host a dinner or a banquet, do not invite your friends or brothers or relatives or rich neighbors. Otherwise, they may invite you in return, and you will be repaid.13But when you host a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind, 14and you will be blessed. Since they cannot repay you, you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”15When one of those reclining with Him heard this, he said to Jesus, “Blessed is everyone who will eat at the feast in the kingdom of God.” 16But Jesus replied, “A certain man prepared a great banquet and invited many guests. 17When it was time for the banquet, he sent his servant to tell those who had been invited, ‘Come, for everything is now ready.’ 18But one after another they all began to make excuses. The first one said, ‘I have bought a field and I need to go see it. Please excuse me.’ 19Another said, ‘I have bought five yoke of oxen and I am going to try them out. Please excuse me.’ 20Still another said, ‘I have married a wife, so I cannot come.’ 21The servant returned and reported all this to his master. Then the owner of the house became angry and said to his servant, ‘Go out quickly into the streets and alleys of the city, and bring in the poor, the crippled, the blind, and the lame.’ 22‘Sir,’ the servant replied, ‘what you ordered has been done, and there is still room.’ 23So the master told his servant, ‘Go out to the highways and hedges and compel them to come in, so that my house will be full. 24For I tell you, not one of those men who were invited will taste my banquet.’”

    Luke 16:13 No servant can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth

    Luke 16:19-21 Now there was a rich man, and he habitually dressed in purple and fine linen, joyously living in splendor every day. And a poor man named Lazarus was laid at his gate, covered with sores, and longing to be fed with the crumbs which were falling from the rich man's table; besides, even the dogs were coming and licking his sores … 25 But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony

    Luke 18:22-23 When Jesus heard this, He said to him, "One thing you still lack; sell all that you possess and distribute it to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me." But when he had heard these things, he became very sad, for he was extremely rich.

    Luke 21:1 As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. 2 He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. 3 “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. 4 All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

    Hebrews 13:5 Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, for God has said: “Never will I leave you, never will I forsake you.”

    1 Timothy 3:3 not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money.

    1 Timothy 6:8-9 If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction.

    1 Timothy 6:10 For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs.

    1 Timothy 6:17 Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy.

    James 1:9The brother in humble circumstances should exult in his high position. 10But the one who is rich should exult in his low position, because he will pass away like a flower of the field. 11For the sun rises with scorching heat and withers the plant; its flower falls and its beauty is lost. So too, the rich man will fade away in the midst of his pursuits.

    James 2:6 But you have dishonored the poor man. Is it not the rich who oppress you and personally drag you into court?

    Rev 3:17 Because thou say, I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing; and know not that thou art the wretched one and miserable and poor and blind and naked:

    Rev 3:18 I counsel thee to buy of me gold refined by fire, that thou mayest become rich; and white garments, that thou mayest clothe thyself, and that the shame of thy nakedness be not made manifest; and eye salve to anoint thine eyes, that thou mayest see.

    James 5:1 Now listen, you rich people, weep and wail because of the misery that is coming on you. 2 Your wealth has rotted, and moths have eaten your clothes. 3 Your gold and silver are corroded. Their corrosion will testify against you and eat your flesh like fire. You have hoarded wealth in the last days. 4 Look! The wages you failed to pay the workers who mowed your fields are crying out against you. The cries of the harvesters have reached the ears of the Lord Almighty. 5 You have lived on earth in luxury and self-indulgence. You have fattened yourselves in the day of slaughter. 6 You have condemned and murdered the innocent one, who was not opposing you.
     
  3. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    The problem is not in being wealthy, but putting one's trust in his wealth instead of in God who allowed him to have it.
     
  4. Ricky M

    Ricky M Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Given God's many many repetitions against squiring wealth, I would have to imagine that the number of people God 'lets' have wealth is extremely small. That's like saying God says the only way into 'heaven' is the Cross, but He lets some in without it anyway.
     
  5. Oscarr

    Oscarr Senior Veteran Supporter

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    I don't think that God worries whether people have wealth or not. He is more concerned about whether the person's heart is in his riches or not. It is not a matter of choosing between wealth and the cross. A wealthy person can come to Christ and be born again as well as a poor person, but the difference is that a truly godly wealthy person will be asking God, "I put my wealth under Your lordship, and so what do you want me to do with it?"

    Also there is a great difference between a person gaining wealth through honest hard work and good business, and another who has gained it through ripping people off in some way. Zaccheus knew that he had overcharged folk on their taxes and so when he believed in Christ, he was quite happy to generously pay back even more than he had gained from those folk. The rich young ruler's heart was in his wealth and when Jesus gave him the choice of selling up and following Him, the man could not do it.

    But the Lord is not going to require every wealthy person who comes to Him to sell up and become a itinerant preacher, living like a tramp and begging off people to survive. But the wealth puts the person in a place where he can contribute to the needs of others as the Holy Spirit directs him.

    Jesus was supported in His ministry by people who had the means to do it. We are not told directly about that, but if we use our common sense, we can work out that there were friends who were people of means who believed in Him and were not hesitant in providing Him and His disciples with accommodation and expenses.
     
  6. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    Many people will weasel wealth into the religion primarily because we are a people who adore those with wealth and strive to be like them or near them. The religion is an earthly religion and needs the support of wealth to continue existing. Therefore it ignores all the passages you list concerning wealth.
     
  7. Bèlla

    Bèlla ילדה❣️טובה Supporter

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    If every Christian is meant to be impoverished who funds the work? I would hope believers aren’t expecting the world to come to their aid or support their church and ministries. Its not going to happen.
     
  8. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    That is an excellent question. I don't think that every Christian is meant to be impoverished.

    I do think that every Christian is expected to treat others as they would want to be treated. Jesus did say that those people to whom much has been given, much will be required.

    I think that it isn't just being wealthy that is the problem. I think it is how one acquires and uses the wealth that is the problem. When one builds their wealth on the suffering of others or when one uses one's wealth just to build even more wealth the Second Great Commandment isn't being followed.

    Jesus taught His followers that earthly treasure is not permanent. The only permanent treasure is that which is built in the Kingdom. In the Kingdom, Love is the 'money' which builds one's treasure.

    It is a fine line to be sure, but I think Christians can be wealthy if they use that wealth while following the two Great Commandments.
     
  9. Bèlla

    Bèlla ילדה❣️טובה Supporter

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    No they aren’t and I know a lot of believers with means.

    True and the Lord communicates what that entails to those with means. But He didn’t give believers lacking wealth permission to malign others whose coffers are greater.

    I rarely read anything positive about money on this site and the comments are directed towards everyone in that group. Including brethren.

    God loves a cheerful giver. But that attitude doesn’t inspire anything positive. There are many causes seeking aid. Ingratitude has a price. We should take care that our words don’t compromise our blessings down the road.

    All things under the heavens belong to God. If He has given someone the ability to attain wealth who are we to complain? I think that reflects discontentment and a question why we weren’t given the same.

    Since we are referencing Christians your concerns are not an issue. He would never bless an operation that transgressed His word. And what He does for our neighbor is not ours to judge, direct, or covet.

    That is not your concern. You can’t know the Lord’s intention unless its revealed or their mission. You’re applying worldly ideals to holy work. They have no place.

    It isn’t as hard as you believe. The greatest challenge is the lack of acceptance amongst the brethren and the probability your social circle will include many who don’t believe.

    In a perfect world that wouldn’t be the case. But sin affects the mind and heart. I wouldn’t expect someone to surround themselves with people who questioned their heart or motives. They’re unhealthy connections that would take a toll over time.

    Most prefer to be in the presence of people who are loving and supportive. If that isn’t found in the church you find it elsewhere. In the end we are meant to please God; not men.
     
  10. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    Simply saying something isn't my concern because -I- can't know God's intention negates the reason for having the Bible. Jesus was pretty clear that He was detailing God's 'intentions' when He presented His commandments.

    I'm one of the ones here who often denigrates the wealthy in America. I do that because America's economic engine...Capitalism...is fundamentally in opposition to the teachings of Jesus. To be sure, my comments about wealth and being a Christian are NOT designed to excuse Capitalism or to give Capitalism any support at all.

    Capitalism is based on greed. Greed and self-sacrificing love for others are not compatible. Just as Christians feel they should evangelize the planet, -I- feel like I should be able to inform Christians that by hitching their wagon to Capitalism they are seriously harming their message.

    There is nothing in Jesus' teachings which can be understood as an endorsement of Capitalism. If there is any indication from the New Testament about which economic engine the religion should endorse, it would be a religious socialism where all personal belongings are given to the church and the church shares that to others as they are needed. The wealthy would bring all their wealth to the church just as the poor bring all they own to the church.

    We see that in Acts where Peter officiates over the death of the married couple who withheld a portion of their wealth when making their contribution to the church.
     
  11. Ricky M

    Ricky M Well-Known Member Supporter

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    The op (posts 1 and 2) were 100% scripture without a single word of human opinion. I find it amusing when people still argue with it. Personally, i think God only gives money to those who don't want it and will use it to help others. Those with big bank accounts get there on their own without God's help
     
  12. Hammster

    Hammster I am the wretch in the song. Staff Member Site Advisor Supporter

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    If that’s true, then everyone is wealthy.
     
  13. Bèlla

    Bèlla ילדה❣️טובה Supporter

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    No it doesn’t. We are told to be slow to speak and quick to listen. If you are forming opinions without the Lord’s input or engagement from the ones you’re discussing that isn’t wisdom from above by any stripe.

    Were you instructed to address that to the church? If so, have you developed a ministry or are you working within one that is tackling the issue? Or is your lone focus this website? Godly burdens always have a purpose and target.

    Christians were given a mandate to make disciples. I don’t “feel” I should be a designer. He called me to that path, equipped me for its undertaking, and provided the resources and wisdom I need to bring it to fruition. I wasn’t driven by a feeling. I was given a purpose. The heart is deceitful and every feeling isn’t of Him.

    Christ didn’t require that of anyone. We see no example of the same in the Old Testament. And the couple you’re referencing were slain because of their deception. They said they gave all and withheld some of their resources as the text demonstrates.

    But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back for yourself part of the proceeds of the land? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not at your disposal? Why is it that you have contrived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to man but to God.” —Acts 5:3-4
     
  14. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    It is, however, wisdom gathered from Jesus as His teachings are recorded in the Bible. Personally, I value that teaching over the teachings of mere humans who are quick to claim divine revelation for their personal opinions.

    I make no claim of divine revelation. I claim only to point out information found in the Bible which is largely ignored or rejected by the modern religion. Once the modern religion moved on from the information in the Bible, it really appears to me that it turned into nothing more than a social club which is driven by the desires of the membership.

    I didn't say Jesus required people to give their stuff to the church. I said, "There is nothing in Jesus' teachings which can be understood as an endorsement of Capitalism. If there is any indication from the New Testament about which economic engine the religion should endorse, it would be a religious socialism where all personal belongings are given to the church and the church shares that to others as they are needed. The wealthy would bring all their wealth to the church just as the poor bring all they own to the church."

    I don't think Jesus even considered starting a church. I think the idea of the church was created by the Apostles once it became clear to them Jesus wasn't coming 'right back'. They needed a mechanism to spread His teachings and the church became that mechanism. Jesus taught a way of life and not a religion.

    But my point was that the solution adopted in the New Testament was one of a form of socialism and not capitalism. And Peter's response to that couple was, in my opinion, designed to demonstrate to others that they should not hold back on their financial commitment to the church he was running.

    I note that the rendition in the Bible is careful to not say that 'GOD' killed those people. It only noted that they were killed because they 'lied to God'. The way it is written implies that they they were killed by the people involved in the church and they justified the killing by claiming a lie was told to God.

    Certainly it was a learning experience for everyone else in the 'church' that they should not hold back their commitment to support the church.
     
  15. Dave-W

    Dave-W Welcoming grandchild #7, Arturus Waggoner! Supporter

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    Some take the verses listed above as proof you cannot be saved if you are not impoverished.
     
  16. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    I know it is a complex issue but -my- take is that there is no relationship between being saved and being a Christian. The writings of Paul in 1 Corinthians 15 and Romans 5 makes it pretty clear that all are saved. That would mean that Christians are just a sub-set of those who are saved who have chosen to follow Jesus' teachings as recorded in the Bible. Given my take on the issue, having or not having wealth should not make a difference on whether one is following the teachings of Jesus by behaving in a loving manner to all people.
     
  17. Dave-W

    Dave-W Welcoming grandchild #7, Arturus Waggoner! Supporter

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    And my take is the opposite - the truly saved are a subset of those who claim to be Christian.
     
  18. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    As I said, it is a complex issue. The Bible contains enough of what appears to be conflicting information that people can arrive at a wide range of concepts about what is going on.

    Personally, I long ago decided I would never want to go to an after-life which arbitrarily excludes people based only on whether they -worshiped- God through the proper channel or not. It excludes a whole lot of otherwise awesome human beings.

    So when I stumbled over the two passages I referenced above I became a lot more comfortable with the concept Jesus is reputed to have presented in the New Testament.

    I belong to some exclusive clubs in this life, but my vision of God is such that I don't want to be around a God who deliberately creates an exclusive club for only those people who belong to the 'correct' religion and condemning all others to misery and death.

    But that is just me and I recognize there are many many people who eagerly look forward to being with such a God.
     
  19. Ricky M

    Ricky M Well-Known Member Supporter

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    suppose I built a resort for the homeless, and all I asked for them to get in was that they stop and say thank you to me at the door. That's it. Say thank you, come on in. Tell me to blankety-blank, you can go sit on the curb outside. Am I really responsible for those who chose to sit on the curb?
     
  20. zephcom

    zephcom Well-Known Member

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    I expect more out of God than I do of you.

    See, you didn't build the world, create the creatures in it, and then create an obtuse method of 'salvation' which requires word of mouth transmission when you could have just posted a sign with the rules on it.

    I find it curious that we are expected to 'love' others even if they don't deserve it but God isn't expected to follow the same rules. That is why the passages I referenced above became important to me. It seems that God does play by the same rules according to the Sacred Document of the religion. I suspect the religion is where the problems are.
     
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