Author Topic: Why are we here?  (Read 1969 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

alihaymeg

  • Guest
Why are we here?
« on: December 06, 2008, 06:50:44 AM »
This is a post from another forum. It is from a conversation I was having with another Christian who was asking what the point of being here is if there is not a choice to be made between Heaven and Hell.

My studying has brought me to this stage in my understanding and I would love to hear your oppinions regarding the subject. This is only the begginning of my study on the subject, and it will probably become more complete as I discover new and relevant information and scriptural support.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 You are absolutely right. It is the voice of the Holy Spirit that we must follow. It is not tradition, or sacrament, or procedure, or opinions that will lead us to the truth. Colossians 2:16, 22-23: 16Therefore do not let anyone judge you by what you eat or drink, or with regard to a religious festival, a New Moon celebration or a Sabbath day. 20Since you died with Christ to the basic principles of this world, why, as though you still belonged to it, do you submit to its rules: 21"Do not handle! Do not taste! Do not touch!"? 22These are all destined to perish with use, because they are based on human commands and teachings. 23Such regulations indeed have an appearance of wisdom, with their self-imposed worship, their false humility and their harsh treatment of the body, but they lack any value in restraining sensual indulgence.

That is why I chose to attend a Christian College and learn all that I could about the original message in its purest form. Let me add that it was a Church of Christ school that I attended. I suffered great opposition as my understanding developed. The Church of Christ is Hell fire all the way. But these professors who had studied the Greek and Hebrew in its earliest forms could not deny the ambiguity in the Latin and English translations. As much as they tried to defend their position from the perspective of eternal damnation, they could not deny that the early Church did not share this view.

Here is the current state of my understanding.
Opponents of Universal Restoration try to call it a "do nothing" religion. According to the Apostle Paul, believing this way turns up the burner to full force. It seems that our entire existence here is a proving ground. Not to prove ourselves worthy of Heaven, but to distinguish ourselves as worthy to become Priests and Kings. This Priesthood will not occur in some far off place but right here. Jesus never said that we could rest comfortably in our assurance and wait for a rapture or our death to become perfected in love. That is supposed to happen here and now.

It all starts with understanding that the punishments and rewards start here and now. We are not to wait for the next age to attain perfection. The doctrine of eternal punishment takes the heat off of us by giving us a false sense of security that we are somehow immune to punishment because of our decision to follow Christ. That is not true in the least.

Romans 14:10,13
10You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God's judgment seat. 13...therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another...

Each man's work will be judged. That which stands will be rewarded and that which is useless will be burned away.

1 Corinthians 3:12-15 (Young's Literal Translation)

 12and if any one doth build upon this foundation gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw --

 13of each the work shall become manifest, for the day shall declare [it], because in fire it is revealed, and the work of each, what kind it is, the fire shall prove;

 14if of any one the work doth remain that he built on [it], a wage he shall receive;

 15if of any the work is burned up, he shall suffer loss; and himself shall be saved, but so as through fire.


This is all of us regardless of our acceptance of Him. The bad will be burned away but he himself shall be saved, even though by fire. This fire is not literal but shows the severity of it. Retribution is real, but it serves a purpose. It is for purification, not senseless endless torment. In this passage the fire serves to reveal the quality of the work.

Those who rise to the top by proving themselves worthy here and now will be placed in positions of authority over all others. St. Paul's first message to the Corinthians states this:

1 Cor. 6:1-8

1 Does any one of you, when he has a case against his neighbor, dare to go to law before the unrighteous and not before the saints?

2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?

3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

4 So if you have law courts dealing with matters of this life, do you appoint them as judges who are of no account in the church?

5 I say this to your shame. Is it so, that there is not among you one wise man who will be able to decide between his brethren,

6 but brother goes to law with brother, and that before unbelievers?

7 Actually, then, it is already a defeat for you, that you have lawsuits with one another. Why not rather be wronged? Why not rather be defrauded?

8 On the contrary, you yourselves wrong and defraud. You do this even to your brethren

Paul is trying to get it through their heads that they are to be seeking perfection and attaining the knowledge that will be necessary to judge the world and even the angels. That is our purpose here; to become Holy as God is Holy. Not at some later time but here and now.

Yes, this will continue into other ages and orders of things, but it starts now.

Is our will stronger than God's?
Our fall was not a surprise to God. It was part of His plan all along. The stage is set for those who accept the challenge to rise above the influence of this world and become perfected in love. Then the real fun begins as the last enemy is defeated, even death itself. There will be a new age and order of things.

You may not be able to see all of this yet, but I'm confident that you will if you seek the truth with an open mind.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------






alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #1 on: December 07, 2008, 11:43:30 AM »
Wow!

Some new information has shed some new light on the ultimate purpose of all of this.
As I understand it, this is the big picture:

God creates man with the intention of having us all be tested by fire. (here and now)

Those proven worthy are placed in positions of authority to finish the work of purging the human race of imperfection. (Judging angels is also a part of that)

All are eventually perfected in love.

All become equal as the need for authority is made obsolete.



There is a point to all of the struggles that we face here. It is a proving ground. We have to understand imperfection and overcome it in order to be like God.

Any thoughts?


Offline Tony N

  • Bronze
  • *
  • Posts: 1631
    • Saviour of All Fellowship
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #2 on: December 09, 2008, 01:22:34 PM »
alihaymeg, I have often wondered about this very topic you bring up.
For instance
2Ti 2:11-13  Faithful is the saying: "For if we died together, we shall be living together also;"  (12)  if we are enduring, we shall be reigning together also; if we are disowning, He also will be disowning us;"  (13)  if we are disbelieving, He is remaining faithful - He cannot disown Himself."

If we are enduring we shall also be reigning together also.
If we are disowning (Christ), He also will be disowning us the right to reign.
That is how I take it.

God has so many injuns and just needs only so many chiefs, so to speak. The cream rises to the top. The thing for me is I don't even know if I will be among the ones reigning. I may be a janitor in the kingdom. But wherever I am that is where I'm supposed to be. May God give us the grace to be faithful to the end.
Just because God says He will save all mankind
does not necessarily mean He won't.

ScarletWren

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #3 on: December 09, 2008, 06:16:39 PM »
Hi

Good thoughts,  Very similar to what I believe, yet I think that we are all still being created, so to speak.  It's not just that this is a proving ground.  Job said to God that He is having a desire to the work of His hands.  We are God's workmanship and He isn't finished with us yet.  t  We are still being formed and all the suffering and falling short we do is what shapes us into His image.  None of us can choose God unless He draws us.  The works that we do that are of any value, He gave us the desire to do them.  In no way does that say we don't have choices.  We have many choices.  In my way of thinking tho, we are not robots, but mice in a laboratory maze.  We can choose one of many ways (or at least from 2 options) but all those doors will eventually lead to the path in the maze that God has chosen us to go.   We will keep going through doors of our choice but we can't end up anywhere different than where God has intended us to be.  Just my thinking at this time.

But just because someone else thinks differently doesn't mean they are to be shunned or beaten into submission into my view.  I can't see the end so my view may change some day.  Only God sees the end of the parade.  I'm glad I really can't see what will happen tomorrow.  It's difficult enough to deal with today. 

Take strength, joy, and peace from His love.

alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #4 on: December 10, 2008, 04:09:48 AM »
Thanks everyone!

     The more I learn the more questions arise. Scarlet, I think we are on the same page. Being perfected is close to the same as saying we are still being created. I guess the important thing is to remember that there is a purpose to all of this. My only question now is if being in that group that will do the judging is preordained or if the "cream of the crop" will recognized for their faithfulness.

Some of the books I have read state that all that believe in Christ as the messiah will be in that group. I'm not so sure. In the end I also will be happy to let God make that determination, but I think (if it is true) that the knowledge that this is an earned position is a great motivator for personal growth and change; certainly better than the false notion of eternal punishment.

ScarletWren

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #5 on: December 10, 2008, 05:26:55 AM »
Alihaymeg,

I speak with virtually no authority on any subject, but I am pretty sure that just as the apostles were chosen by Christ, the firstfruits are specifically chosen by God to their position.  I think that only the firstfruits (or elect some say) reign with Christ at first.  Then the main body of believers who weren't faithful in whatever way disqualifies one, enter in after they are perfected.  Then the 'rest' will be brought in at such a time as their perfection is accomplished. I see my life and can't imagine that I would be in the first group, but as I see the people that He chose in scripture, I won't say that He couldn't make something out of this very weak vessel if He chooses. This is just what seems right in my perceptions at this time.  But the more I understand, the more I know I don't know.  There is so much more spiritual meaning to scripture than I ever dreamed possible.  Our God is awesome indeed.


alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #6 on: December 10, 2008, 05:33:47 AM »
That is my understanding as well.

I just can't shake this feeling that there is a higher challenge offered here. I keep getting the message that the idea that we can rest in our assurance of reconciliation is robbing us of greater things. When I argue with the "voice" it says "Yes you can do it! My grace is sufficient for you."

ScarletWren

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #7 on: December 10, 2008, 06:29:08 AM »
So is there any specific challenge you feel led to answer?  I'd love to hear about it.  All I ever seem to hear is, wait.  But maybe that's all I want to hear?  Sigh.  Go figure. 

Offline Pierac

  • Bronze
  • *
  • Posts: 1377
  • Gender: Male
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #8 on: December 10, 2008, 06:40:25 AM »
Why are we here?

CLV Ecc 1:13 I applied my heart to inquiring and exploring by wisdom concerning all that is done under the heavens: it is an experience of evil Elohim (God) has given to the sons of humanity to humble them by it.

Your here because God has plans for you, plans you and I can't even begin to understand...

CLV Ecc 3:11 He has made everything fitting in its season; However, He has put obscurity in their heart So that the man may not find out His work, That which the One, Elohim (God), does from the beginning to the terminus."

 :thumbsup:
Paul


alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #9 on: December 10, 2008, 06:49:48 AM »
Yes, I feel a call to become holy as He is holy. Not to wait for the flesh to be taken away, but to reach for it now.
My mind has always told me that we are not capable of being perfected here; that the influence of the flesh it too strong. That is not what He is speaking to my heart.

The first important thing is to understand what "falling short" is.
(Keep in mind that this is all what I considder to be revelation and not scripturally based)

Anything that is spoken or performed that does not proceed from love is imperfection.
So, to be perfected is simply to walk in perfect love led by the spirit.
I don't know exactly how to do this yet but I know that it is posible.
I suspect that is accomplished by dying (to the things of this world) a little every day.

ScarletWren

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #10 on: December 10, 2008, 08:56:39 AM »
It would seem logical to my imperfect understanding, to act upon what you feel you are being called to do.  Does that make sense?  You say you think you are called to be holy, but that's not very specific.  In what way...what do you need to DO to become holy.  It is my understanding that being holy is to be set apart, consecrated.  Is that something we can do of our own accord?  Can you splash yourself with holy water or bathe in the Ganges to make yourself holy?  Can you say x number of novenas to become holy or memorize scriptures?   Should you flog yourself and scourge the flesh?  Should u give all your money to the poor?  I'm not trying to be silly, I would seriously like to know what you can DO to make yourself holy.

I believe that since it is God that perfects us, we should simply do what we need to do, or what we feel is on our hearts to do.  Somewhere along the line, God deals with us, but in all of it, He loves us.  We will learn, be admonished, do some things right and take one step forward and two steps back and perhaps learn to be content in whatever place He puts us.  That's the hardest part for me.  I am seldom content.  I appear to be content to many people but I am seething and gnashing at the bit to move on to the next place.  But I know that it isn't when or how I want it, but how God is working it all out, in His timing.  Even knowing that, I too can get irritable wanting to see the good thing He's promised to make of me, and only seeing what I perceive to be failures. 

I hope you find your answers.  Please share them as you do. 

Peace and grace surround you in your quest.  Be kind to me, please, when you get there as I'll probably be at the end of the line.




Offline reFORMer

  • < Moderator >
  • *
  • Posts: 1943
  • Gender: Male
  • Psalm 133
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #11 on: December 10, 2008, 10:10:42 AM »
Something about the process we're in was obsured from me for a long time.  I wondered if God actually changed us or if it was an advance of His presence in us.  I'm not sure that makes it clear.  I'll try again.  I wanted to know if what's happening is our own personal transformation or if it's God manifesting Himself.  In other words, does God anoint us so we can change or is the change an increase of His anointing.  I believe this was eventually answered.  It is the latter of the two.  What made Elijah or Moses different wasn't the human vessel.  What made them what they were was the manifest presence of God.  It's not about our becoming different; but, it is God becoming present in us.  Some have said that first we know He's out there.  Then we know He's in us.  Finally we know Him expressed as us.

What the works that are tried are is what is the presence of God that is built into our being.  As temples of the Holy Ghost we are building a being that has conscious experience of Gods presence and building by doing what God has said so He expresses through his works His presence with us.  Jesus talked about the wind and waves that come against the house, whether it is built on sand or rock determines whether it survives.  The sand are all those little decisions based on all sorts of lesser motives.  The rock is God's presence manifesting in power, making known His will.  Built on that we have a house of His presence radiating in glory.  "In that day you shall know that you are in me and I am in you and that we are one even as I and the Father are one."
« Last Edit: December 10, 2008, 10:19:59 AM by reFORMer »
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline rosered

  • Silver
  • *
  • Posts: 2953
  • Gender: Female
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #12 on: December 10, 2008, 02:13:07 PM »

 
  Good Stuff alihaymeg  and all
    I believe we are all  going to be  the same in the Kingdom
  One  in all thru all  [in Christ Body ] even now , those whom the flesh is out of the way , in the body or out of the Body I do not know  , Paul said
  to me there is a simple way to see it , there are two bodies ,  the body of death /earthly and  the  heavenly Body  / Life in Christ 
 God is forming the  Whole even now ..
 Jesus said this that makes me think ,  mark 10 ,  one account of this  teaching of Jesus this ..

  NIV .  The Request of James and John
 35Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him. "Teacher," they said, "we want you to do for us whatever we ask."
 36"What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.

 37They replied, "Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory."

 38"You don't know what you are asking," Jesus said. "Can you drink the cup I drink or be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with?"

 39"We can," they answered. Jesus said to them, "You will drink the cup I drink and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with,
 the purifying process to me  , it is appointed/ reserved for man to die once than the judgment
 
  I found this in hebrews and than in Job
 
 Job 14:14 If a man die, shall he live [again]? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. 

 now back to Jesus explaining this  process

 
 40but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared."

 
 41When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John.
 
 42Jesus called them together and said, "You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.
  43Not so with you.
 Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,

 44and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.
 
 45For even the Son of Man did not come to be served,
 but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

  the last or least are  cared for by the stronger one whom is  prepared by the Father /God to do this  work ! 
 
 as everything  comes into place 
 

alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #13 on: December 10, 2008, 03:05:13 PM »
That is the essence of it.

"The last shall be first and the first shall be last."
Those who put themselves first in this age shall be last (in rank) in the next age.
Those who put themselves last and serve the rest by sacrificing pride and crucifying the flesh shall be first (in rank) in the next age.

Mathew 20:1 - 16 has been interpreted to be talking about those who are given eternal life in Christ. Knowing that all are to eventually be restored, we must search deeper into this passage to get what is really being said. Another meaning of the word transliterated "Eklektos" (chosen) is elect. Another definition is:

"choice, select, i.e. the best of its kind or class, excellence preeminent: applied to certain individual Christians."

The meaning of the word transliterated "Kletos" (called) is almost synonamous with "Eklektos" exept for the earned quality of the word. It is used to describe Jesus as having been appointed to the highest office.

A better way to understand this statement would be to say that: Many are invited, but few are found worthy.
We know that being found worthy is not required to be reconciled with God, but it is required to be included in the "remnant" that will judge the world and the angels.

1 Cor 6:2-3
2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?

3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

The word ransliterated "Hagios" (saints) means litterally "holy ones".

Offline Doc

  • 500
  • *
  • Posts: 853
  • Gender: Male
  • Jesus Christ is the Savior of ALL men.
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #14 on: December 10, 2008, 10:20:21 PM »
That is the essence of it.

"The last shall be first and the first shall be last."
Those who put themselves first in this age shall be last (in rank) in the next age.
Those who put themselves last and serve the rest by sacrificing pride and crucifying the flesh shall be first (in rank) in the next age.

Mathew 20:1 - 16 has been interpreted to be talking about those who are given eternal life in Christ. Knowing that all are to eventually be restored, we must search deeper into this passage to get what is really being said. Another meaning of the word transliterated "Eklektos" (chosen) is elect. Another definition is:

"choice, select, i.e. the best of its kind or class, excellence preeminent: applied to certain individual Christians."

The meaning of the word transliterated "Kletos" (called) is almost synonamous with "Eklektos" exept for the earned quality of the word. It is used to describe Jesus as having been appointed to the highest office.

A better way to understand this statement would be to say that: Many are invited, but few are found worthy.
We know that being found worthy is not required to be reconciled with God, but it is required to be included in the "remnant" that will judge the world and the angels.

1 Cor 6:2-3
2 Or do you not know that the saints will judge the world? If the world is judged by you, are you not competent to constitute the smallest law courts?

3 Do you not know that we will judge angels? How much more matters of this life?

The word ransliterated "Hagios" (saints) means litterally "holy ones".

To put my opinion regarding your original question in a nutshell, I would say; we're here to learn.
God does not instruct us to pray to change His mind. He wants us to pray so that we'll know His mind.
 
"Prayer doesn't change God, it changes me." --C.S. Lewis

God never had or needed a Plan B. He's still on Plan A.

Res Veritas Loquitur

Offline reFORMer

  • < Moderator >
  • *
  • Posts: 1943
  • Gender: Male
  • Psalm 133
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #15 on: December 11, 2008, 07:15:15 AM »

 
  Good Stuff alihaymeg  and all
    I believe we are all  going to be  the same in the Kingdom
  One  in all thru all  [in Christ Body ] even now , those whom the flesh is out of the way , in the body or out of the Body I do not know  , Paul said
  to me there is a simple way to see it , there are two bodies ,  the body of death /earthly and  the  heavenly Body  / Life in Christ 
 God is forming the  Whole even now ..
 Jesus said this that makes me think ,  mark 10 ,  one account of this  teaching of Jesus this ..

  NIV .  The Request of James and John
 35Then James and John, the sons of Zebedee, came to him. "Teacher," they said, "we want you to do for us whatever we ask."
 36"What do you want me to do for you?" he asked.

 37They replied, "Let one of us sit at your right and the other at your left in your glory."

 38"You don't know what you are asking," Jesus said. "Can you drink the cup I drink or be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with?"

 39"We can," they answered. Jesus said to them, "You will drink the cup I drink and be baptized with the baptism I am baptized with,
 the purifying process to me  , it is appointed/ reserved for man to die once than the judgment
 
  I found this in hebrews and than in Job
 
 Job 14:14 If a man die, shall he live [again]? all the days of my appointed time will I wait, till my change come. 

 now back to Jesus explaining this  process

 
 40but to sit at my right or left is not for me to grant. These places belong to those for whom they have been prepared."

 
 41When the ten heard about this, they became indignant with James and John.
 
 42Jesus called them together and said, "You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them.
  43Not so with you.
 Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant,

 44and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all.
 
 45For even the Son of Man did not come to be served,
 but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many."

  the last or least are  cared for by the stronger one whom is  prepared by the Father /God to do this  work ! 
 
 as everything  comes into place 
 


And he said unto them, The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship
over them; and they that exercise authority upon them are called
benefactors. But ye shall not be so: but he that is greatest among you,
let him be as the younger; and he that is chief, as he that doth serve.
Luke 22:25-26 (KJV)

There's no hierarchy among those who are Jesus's disciples, period. We're simply working other lords when any but Jesus Himself rules over each of us directly. No problem with the boss in his office in the workplace. We honor the President in his Whitehouse. It's as the Church there's little benefit from external or legal rule. When a bunch of youngsters come running in, because I'm so big I can see over (episkopos) them, where they're going, what they're doing. Being younger they give me authority. "Now Johnny , stop that. All of you, quiet down.  Cheryl, go find your mother. Everybody just take it back outside." And the greatest is slave of all. It's not how much I can bring healing or prophecy and the rest that determines my greatness. The measure of ministry is how much of the image of Christ, all he is and does, I can bring forth from others.

Hebrews 13:17 according to the KJV: "Obey them that have the rule over you..." "Rule" isn't there in the original, neither is "over." It more literally has those who are "advanced in 'protecting and caretaking' (one word)." Additionally, this is not the usual word translated "obey," which is to do what somebody else tells you to do. The original is "yield," giving place to those who are already themselves doing something, or, "be persuaded." The subsequent phrase (KJV) "and submit yourselves," aside from the fact it is in question if one desires a pure text, may be translated as, "and be deferring to them." So we have, beginning with the context of maintaining sacrificial good deeds, "Yield to those who are advanced in protecting and caretaking (and be deferring to them, for they are vigilant for the sake of your souls..." Instead of being told to be doing what we're told to do by those who would rule over us, this has us making room for and going along with those in our midst who are doing good works, specially the kind of work that has to do with adjusting our souls to accord with the Lord Jesus Christ. (v.8) A similar phrase is in v.7, and instead of KJV: "Remember them that have the rule over you..." we should read, "Be remembering those who are in advance of you (or, those of your leaders) who speak to you the word of God..."
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

alihaymeg

  • Guest
Re: Why are we here?
« Reply #16 on: December 11, 2008, 07:40:05 PM »
Thanks for all of your input everyone.

I'm still studying and trying to keep myself out of the way. If we can simply rest in our assurance, then great!
I'm still not convinced because of this pesky voice telling me ther is more.
I'll get back to you when I have something more concrete and supported by scripture.
Thanks again everyone. :thumbsup: