Originally posted by LemonJello
i want to belive in the christian god, but there are many things about the faith that make no sense to me. here are just a couple:
1. am i to believe that our only purpose here on earth is to worship and glorify god? that seems egotistical on god's part to the extreme. what satisfaction could god possibly derive out of forcing me to try but knowing ...[text shortened]... i think are crucially important. i am open to all forms of criticism and alternative viewpoints.
Hello, Lemon, I want to welcome you to RHP first of all. Those are some great questions, and I want to reassure you with what God says in His Word, the Bible:
Proverbs 8:17 I love them that love me; and those that seek me early shall find me
Actually, our purpose on Earth is to make a choice. Our choice is to accept that no matter how good we are in life, it is filthy and evil compared to God, and as such, we deserve Hell but His sacrifice on the cross paid our way to Heaven. Or we can make a choice against Him, deny our Maker, the one who gave us existence and gives us breath, and die in our sins. If we choose the former, He works in our lives and molds us not into someone worse than who we were, but into who we were MEANT to be, before our sins twisted us. Glorifying God is something we do because He is worthy of it. When you look at the stars, and you know He molded them, or your family, and you know He crafted them, who is like Him? He is Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. Your soul cries out to praise Him when you know Him.
He gets no pleasure out of you failing to live a sinless life, but He gets pleasure out of you turning to Him because He is your only hope, your rock, your Savior. If we could open the Bible and find one word, it would be FAITH. God just wants us to acknowledge that without our Maker we are nothing. Without Him to save us from our self induced punishment in Hell, we would all suffer. He would have been well within goodness and justness to leave us to our fate, but His love for us was too great.
We are no game, dear Lemon. We are one of His most beautiful creations. We are intelligent enough to stand in awe at His Majesty and have free will to be able to choose to do so or not. Don't you see? If Adam never had the possiblity of disobeying God, we would be glorified slaves. We would be happy, of course, but it would be a shallow form of happiness, when we've never known sadness. God would forever know that it wasn't our choice and that He forced it on us. He did not set us up for failure, He set us up for victory through Him, and with it, the truest love there is.
What better way of transmitting vital information than the Bible? It preserves our free will, and it gets His message accross. It is our choice to see if the Bible contains God's message to us, and no one forces us to. God didn't 'rely' on anything. He inspired those men while they wrote and He protected His Word throughout the centuries, insuring that men would be able to see it. And He chose the Jews to be His beacon to the world. He promises to protect them until the end of time to proclaim His existence. Have you heard of the War of independance or the Six Day War in 1967? In both, Israel was vastly outnumbered by Arab neighbors and won. Even non-believers thought the Six Day War that won them Jerusalem was a miracle. God uses Israel to proclaim His existence to this dying world, because of His love for us.
Jesus spoke in parables because of the many proud people who weren't interested in His message. As difficult as it is to believe, some people CANNOT love God, because they are too in love with themselves. People saw Jesus' miracles and explained them away, because they worshipped themselves more than their Maker. Jesus said in the Gospels "Father, I thank you for hiding this (His message of salvation) from the wise and the prudent, and revealing it to the meek.' Those who want truth and not comfort will find God, He promises us. If you read the Gospels, Jesus ALWAYS explained His parables to His disciples (when they were alone) because they wanted the truth.
I understand you are confused. Let me show you a quote from God's Word in 1st Corinthians 1:
18 For the preaching of the cross is to them that perish (unsaved)foolishness; but unto us which are saved it is the power of God.
19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.
20 Where is the wise? where is the scribe? where is the philosopher of this world? hath not God made foolish the wisdom of this world?
21 For after that in the wisdom of God the world by wisdom knew not God, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe.
22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:
23 But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumblingblock, and unto the Greeks (Gentiles) foolishness;
24 But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
25 Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.
26 For ye see your calling, brethren, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called:
27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
28 And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are:
29 That no flesh (man) should glory (boast) in his presence.
The hardest lesson Man has to learn is that only God is worthy of praise and not Man. Once we learn that, we are open to the truth, and open to His everlasting love and His grace, which saves us from wrath.
I will end with a few verses I think are important, and I want you to know you are in my prayers.
Romans 3:23 For all
have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again (from flesh to Holy Spirit), he cannot see the kingdom of God.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
Romans 10:9-11 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved
. For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.
Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me.