Author Topic: Hello from a new Christian  (Read 1119 times)

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Offline victoriousgospel

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Hello from a new Christian
« on: November 19, 2012, 11:02:14 PM »
I've been browsing the forums for a while. Glad to be here.

I was raised in a very strict, very chaotic Pentecostal church. Very scary hellfire and brimstone stuff, even in the kids Sunday School classes. We never handled snakes or drank poison or anything, but just about everything else was fair game.  A very prevalent "buckle down for the end of the world" withdrawal mentality. Then my parents split up, and I started attending a Church of God with my mother as a teenager. It was much less chaotic, but still seemed very focused on lists of 'how to stay out of Hell'.

Shortly after my parents split up, I had a really long one-on-one talk with that Church of God minister about predestination to Hell, 'the people in the jungles of Africa who would never have heard of Jesus', all that classic stuff that kids so obviously smell as being wrong, but adults easily swallow whole. He was a very nice man, but was never able to give satisfying answers that seemed to unify the confusing worldview of Christianity-at-large. In fact, he didn't seem to be quite sure of exactly what God's plan for humanity was at all and seemed to be just as confused as I was.

Eventually, I fell away from the faith and experienced a gradual hardening of heart. I spent the last ten years going from Christian-in-name-only, to agnostic, and finally bordering on atheist. I started to look at all religion as superstition, and took great pride in my worldview of 'self-sufficiency'. Ten years of that.

Then, a couple of months ago I fell into a deep depression and couldn't bear the ultimate meaninglessness that atheism results in - eventually the Universe freezes out, and everything means nothing. But I saw purpose everywhere! How could that jive? Everything about our existence as humans would have to hinge on a series of unbelievably improbable coincidences, all stacked on top of an 'uncaused cause' that has no sentience or purpose! What a bunch of junk!

After a week of throwing up, no sleep, and researching philosophy, various world views - I decided that Christianity, to my agnostic state of mind, seemed the least "made up", despite my terrible experiences with it in the past. Then, I was led to Tentmaker.  I read.  And I thought that Universal Salvation had to be total BS!  :laugh: How could the bulk of what I had been taught, and what most Christians believe, be unsupported by the very Scriptures they base their beliefs upon? After reading some of the articles on the site, I decided to just tear the Band-Aid off - I was going to read the Bible, cover to cover, and decide. If I hit a passage that seemed related to ET or UR, I would cross-check against multiple translations, etc...

Well, I'm almost done with my first read-through! And I believe! The most confusing thing for me is, even with a really average Bible translation (I'm using NIV as my primary for readability) there are WAY more passages that indicate UR than those that seem to indicate otherwise! And those are easily explained with better translations, etc. How is this not the majority position of the Church?! I'm really astonished. There are so many passages that clearly link Christ's work on the cross as the act that will completely undo the consequences of Adam's fall... ALL men, ALL things... how could someone ignore this?

Why do we cling to ET doctrine? Christianity is so beautiful! And truly just! It's so sad that people are actively leading each other away from this! And for what? Why do we hang on to the idea of eternal suffering for anyone? We're supposed to love our enemies! The traditional idea of God paints him as a real do-as-I-say, not-as-I-do kind of guy! But Jesus came to be The Way! He DID it! God will accomplish all his purposes, and the world will LEARN RIGHTEOUSNESS! Nobody left behind!

Thanks everyone!

Offline lomarah

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2012, 11:07:51 PM »
 :cloud9: Awesome. He is Love.  :HeartThrob:
From Him and through Him and to Him are all things.

Offline onlytruth

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #2 on: November 20, 2012, 02:52:07 AM »
great intro! :thumbsup:

Offline jabcat

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #3 on: November 20, 2012, 05:22:06 AM »
Awesome!  Praise God!
Looking unto Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.  Heb. 12:2

Offline reFORMer

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #4 on: November 20, 2012, 07:52:02 AM »
We may seem to be going rather slow, those of us who hang out here.  It's partly due to this medium we are using for our fellowship.  But, from it there keeps falling out on the road rare treasures, answers and challenges that get us closer to our goal to be like Him and walk in total victory, even over death.  We hope you'll come back to us and participate with some kind of regularity.
I went to church; but, the Church wasn't on the program!  JESUS WANTS HIS BODY BACK!!  MEET WITHOUT HUMAN HEADSHIP!!!

Offline eaglesway

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #5 on: November 20, 2012, 08:26:59 AM »
A wonderful, beautiful testimony. Welcome!
The Logos is complete, but it is not completely understood. hellisamyth.webs.com

Offline ded2daworld

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #6 on: November 20, 2012, 03:34:12 PM »
Hi Victoriousgospel,
There is a website that has over 20 different translations available to read for free.
You can even plug in to read 5 different translations of your choosing side by side for comparison.
here is the address:

http://www.biblegateway.com/

I quit paying exhorbitant prices for Bibles and read for free now. Also, if you use an e-reader, the Holman Christian Bible can be downloaded for free.
Thanks for participating.
"Why do so many people think that the Bible is only inspired at certain points -  and that  THEY are inspired to pick out which points?"

Offline victoriousgospel

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #7 on: November 20, 2012, 06:23:10 PM »
Thanks Ded! I just got Blue Letter Bible on my iPad, and it has been very helpful. I will have to check out the other stuff you mentioned as well.

Offline Lazarus Short

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Re: Hello from a new Christian
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2012, 12:20:24 AM »
Welcome, and thanks for sharing!   :friendstu:

Stick around, learn and share with us - it's good to have you here!  :dsunny:

BTW, I was an atheist for about ten years too.
« Last Edit: November 22, 2012, 01:37:09 AM by Lazarus Short »
Socrates taught Plato.  Plato taught Aristotle.  Aristotle tutored the son of Philip of Macedon.  This boy grew up to become Alexander the Great, largely by slaughtering a lot of people.  That's philosophy.

Jesus spoke the Truth.  He blessed the poor.  He healed the sick.  He even raised the dead.  He died on a cross for us, lived again, and came back long enough to tell us to love one another.  That's religion.