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Religious Topic: Who exactly is the Devil?

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  • Religious Topic: Who exactly is the Devil?

    I'm writing this because my beliefs about what's going on in the past, present, and future really depends on understanding who exactly is Satan the Devil.

    Some people believe that the Devil is not real, but an ideology, representing evil.

    Some people believe that God intentionally created the Devil as he is now, so everything that he does is indirectly God's fault.

    And some people think he's the King of Hell, and that he torments people day and night in it.

    Well, here's the biblical aspect of the Devil:

    1. His origins

    I think a fair amount of you know that the Devil was not always "the Devil". In fact, the words "devil" and "satan" are not his names, but rather descriptions of his disposition:

    devil n.

    (Gr. diabolos), a slanderer,


    So devil means "slanderer", no doubt referring to slandering God by insinuating to Eve that God does not have their best interests at heart. (Genesis 3:1-5)

    What about "satan"?

    satan n.

    adversary; accuser.


    Once again, the meaning is obvious since he is the adversary of God, and as previously pointed out, accused God of being unfair with his human creation.

    But, I'm getting ahead of myself; I said earlier that he wasn't always "evil" or "bad". Here's how the Bible defines him:

    "You were in Eden, the garden of God; every precious stone was your covering, the carnelian, topaz, jasper, chrysolite, beryl, onyx, sapphire, carbuncle, and emerald; and your settings and your sockets and engravings were wrought in gold. On the day that you were created they were prepared.
    You were the anointed cherub that covers with overshadowing [wings], and I set you so. You were upon the holy mountain of God; you walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire [like the paved work of gleaming sapphire stone upon which the God of Israel walked on Mount Sinai].
    You were blameless in your ways from the day you were created until iniquity and guilt were found in you ...
    (Ezekiel 28:13-15)

    Notice that it is said that he was "blameless in his ways". So at one point, he was a faithful angelic spirit being. So, God did not create "The Devil" as we now know him. His current disposition has nothing to do with God's creation of him, but everything to do with the decisions he made. Let's read a bit further:

    "Through the abundance of your commerce you were filled with lawlessness and violence, and you sinned; therefore I cast you out as a profane thing from the mountain of God and the guardian cherub drove you out from the midst of the stones of fire.
    Your heart was proud and lifted up because of your beauty; you corrupted your wisdom for the sake of your splendor. I cast you to the ground; I lay you before kings, that they might gaze at you."
    (Ezekiel 28:16-18)

    So he became proud, and basically became wrapped up in himself; this was ultimately how he was corrupted. Instead of putting such thoughts out of his mind, he nurtured until he changed his disposition from being a faithful servant of God into an adversary (Satan), and later, a slanderer (devil).

    Not that it matters, but was "Lucifer" the Devil's name? The word "Lucifer" only occurs in certain Bible versions like the King James Version and the Knox and Darby Translation. The scripture it's mentioned in is Isaiah 14:12:

    "“How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations! For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north.”

    Some other Bibles render "Lucifer" as "shining one", "shining star", or "day star". The name literally means "bringer of dawn" or "bringer of light". In context of the scripture, this is aimed at the King of Babylon. The writer, Isaiah, was writing about his impending doom because of exalting himself above God Almighty. He also wrote what would ultimately become of him. Now whether this could be attributed to the Devil is a debate that could last for ages. However, my personal opinion is: I doubt God would actually use the Devil's name in a book that he inspired, especially considering the issues at hand (which we'll get into later). (2 Timothy 3:16)

    2. His Intentions

    Well, as we've read in Ezekiel, the Devil will be destroyed because of his actions that has caused untold suffering, violence and death. So his agenda is rather clear: to take as many as he can with him. His whole goal is to lead any and everyone away from God using any means necessary. He's doing this by raising two issues that would take time to settle, and that's where we will begin next ...

    [End of Part 1]

  • #2
    some being commonly underestimated.
    My other aliases:
    justp1ayin
    West
    Masai
    On The Shelf

    Originally posted by Nasen
    i seeth for a minute
    Originally posted by Derty JaSoN
    i have no clue who was de-re whatever

    Comment


    • #3
      Issue #1: Are humans better off governing themselves without God's interference?

      Let's read the account in which this issue was raised:

      "NOW THE serpent was more subtle and crafty than any living creature of the field which the Lord God had made. And he [Satan] said to the woman, Can it really be that God has said, You shall not eat from every tree of the garden?
      And the woman said to the serpent, We may eat the fruit from the trees of the garden,
      Except the fruit from the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die.
      But the serpent said to the woman, You shall not surely die,
      For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing the difference between good and evil and blessing and calamity."
      (Genesis 3:1-5)

      Indeed the Devil was very crafty. Notice how he asks the first question .. He asked "Can it really be that God has aid, 'You shall not eat from every tree of the garden?". Obviously, this was not the case, and the Devil knows it. But obviously, the intention was to draw attention to the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil (or Bad). Nothing in the Bible said that there was anything physically special about the tree. Now before we get to the issue that the Devil raised. Some people have concluded that God was testing Adam and Eve. Was that the case? No, it was not.

      For one thing, in the Bible, God does test people, but He does not tempt them to do wrong:

      "When under trial, let no one say: “I am being tried by God.” For with evil things God cannot be tried nor does he himself try anyone. (James 1:13)

      So if it wasn't a test, then what was it? It was a law, much like we have laws such as "Don't drink and drive", and "Obey traffic signals". But someone would say, "those laws are easily understood as to why they exist, what was the purpose of setting up this particular one?"

      Good question ...

      The answer is this: most people tend to forget that Adam and Eve were never children. Each was created as an adult. The point of his law was to understand that their obedience is paramount to living a happy life.

      Speaking of life, most people also tend to forget about the Tree of Life:

      "And out of the ground the Lord God made to grow every tree that is pleasant to the sight or to be desired--good (suitable, pleasant) for food; the tree of life also in the center of the garden, and the tree of the knowledge of [the difference between] good and evil and blessing and calamity."

      We already know of the prohibition from eating of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil, but there was never a prohibition from eating of the Tree of Life! These trees represent two things that are important:

      1) God's right to make the rules (Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil). After all, since humans are his creation, he has, by default, the right to make guidelines as to what is acceptable (good) and what is not acceptable (bad).

      2) Adam and Eve's lives were depicted by the Tree of Life. Basically, the tree represented God's guarantee of continued life for Adam and Eve. However, this was conditional on being obedient to his rules, which goes back to the other tree. Notice God's reasoning on expelling the first human pair after their disobedience: "Then the LORD God said, "Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil; and now, lest he put forth his hand and take also of the tree of life, and eat, and live forever" -- therefore the God sent him forth from the garden of Eden, to till the ground from which he was taken. He drove out the man; and at the east of the garden of Eden he placed the cherubim, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life." (Gen 3:22-24)

      So again, why was it important for Adam and Eve to understand that God is in charge? They were going to be the progenitors of humankind. If they do not understand that obedience is God is paramount, then how could they ever teach their children the same? Wouldn't it be rather pointless for God to allow Adam and Eve to procreate, and then try to install some kind of order after they filled the earth with millions or even billions of people? Had Adam and Eve been obedient, it would only be logical that they understood that obedience is the key to living an everlasting happy life. They would have taught their offspring this, and their offspring would teach their offspring and so on. As time passes by, God would have instituted more laws to govern humans, especially after procreation has taken place, to account for situations that were not present in the Garden of Eden.

      Now, the punishment was death as described in Genesis 2:17 for eating of that Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Bad, but God did not execute Adam and Eve as soon as they disobeyed. God saw fit to let them procreate first, which is the reason why the human race still exists. Plus, this issue the Devil has raised could not be settled if God destroyed the first human pair (and the Devil) right away. Think of it as a loving father who's being accused of abusing his children. Now if the father lashes out and kills the accuser, along with the children that turned against him, would it not seem to substantiate the claims of the accuser? The only way for the issue to be settled is to let the accuser make his case, and let the evidence be presented. So in this case, humans have to be given enough time to try out every form of government there is--democracy, anarch, monarch, communist, what have you. There can be no lingering doubt.

      Judging by the last 6,000 years or so, humans cannot govern themselves successfully. Attrocities are committed on a daily basis, big and small. And while the U.S. has a highly-developed judicial system, does it not fail people in some way? Even if we had "perfect laws", humans cannot really enforce them. So, in essence, humans do not have the know-how or the means to enforce any type of government by themselves. So here lies a choice. Genesis 3:15 says that there will be an enmity between God's seed (or "offspring, children") and Satan's. There will be two sides. One will side with the Devil--as in, they will choose to rule themselves despite the fact that they have no right to do so. They will set their own rules, and will not subjugate themselves to God under any circumstances. Then there's God's side, those who willingly admit that God's way is best, and that his right to rule is absolute, and humans have no recourse in questioning it. They also understand that God's way is ultimately in their own benefit. (Isaiah 48:17, 18; 2 Timothy 3:16)

      I will put this out here to all of you:

      Through your own actions or inactions, you will choose which side you will be on. There's no third "seed" for being "neutral".

      However, there was a secondary issue raised, which will discussed in Part 3 ...

      [End of Part 2]
      Last edited by Benjamin; 08-22-2005, 09:41 AM.

      Comment


      • #4
        Issue #2: Do people serve God out of love or out of self-interest?

        During the time of Job, the Devil accused the humans that remained faithful to God of being selfish, using Job as an example. He stated:

        "Then Satan answered the Lord, Does Job [reverently] fear God for nothing? Have You not put a hedge about him and his house and all that he has, on every side? You have conferred prosperity and happiness upon him in the work of his hands, and his possessions have increased in the land. But put forth Your hand now and touch all that he has, and he will curse You to Your face." ―Job 1:9-11

        So here, the Devil accuses Job of being self-serving. He only served God because of the many blessings he enjoy and the hedge ("protection") that God has put around him. The Devil told God that all of these things were taken away, he would curse Him to his very face. The Devil was wrong. Although Job was confused, he remained faithful. ―Job 1:22

        However, that challenge wasn't issued just to Job ...

        After Devil failed in his first attempt of breaking Job's integrity, he went before Almighty God again and said:

        "Then Satan answered the Lord, Skin for skin! Yes, all that a man has will he give for his life." ―Job 2:4

        So now the challenge is extended to encompass all of humanity. But, Job remained faithful despite the Devil's repeated attempts at subverting his integrity. At the end of Job’s faithful course under test, God constituted him a priest for his three companions who had contended with him, and God restored Job to his former status. He again had a fine family (evidently by the same wife) and double the wealth he had previously possessed. All his relatives and former associates returned to pay respect to him and to bring him gifts. (Job 42:7-15) He lived to see his sons and his grandsons to four generations.—Job 42:16

        However, that was Job .. What about us?

        For those who profess faith in God, do we only do it when times are going good, but seemingly "forget" about them when times are not so good or when we're tempted with somethng that goes contrary to a biblical law or principle? Once again, it will take time to settle this issue. But fortunately, this issue has already been dealt with. The Bible has proven that although imperfect, some of Adam and Eve's offspring, like Job, proved faithful even under the most excruciating of tests.

        However, there's a problem .. We still die. Noah, Abraham, and Moses were all faithful to God, but they still died. Why? Because of Adam and Eve's disobedience, they lost out on the opportunity of having a perfect and everlasting life. Their sinning (which literally means 'falling short' as in falling short of what is required) made them imperfect. This has cataclysmic consequences since they passed this on to their offspring--old age, sickness, and death:

        "That is why, just as through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned—" (Romans 5:12)

        So since we all inherited the sinful state from Adam and Eve, then how can we have the same opportunity that the first two humans had? That will be discussed in Part 4 ...

        [End of Part 3]
        Last edited by Benjamin; 08-22-2005, 04:11 PM.

        Comment


        • #5
          "the woman said to the serpent, We may eat the fruit from the trees of the garden,
          Except the fruit from the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die."

          well she did touch it and Adam ate it and they didn't die, so therefore God lied?

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by SlimPhatty
            "the woman said to the serpent, We may eat the fruit from the trees of the garden,
            Except the fruit from the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die."

            well she did touch it and Adam ate it and they didn't die, so therefore God lied?
            They did die. God did not say specifically that they would die literally the instant they ate from it. He said that the day they ate from it, they will die (Gen 2:17). Most people understood this as meaning a literal 24 hour period [but this is a modern understanding]. However, Moses in Psalms 90:1-4 and the Apostle Peter in 2 Peter 3:8, both attributed that a thousand earth years to us, is like a "day" to God.

            Incidentally, Adam never lived to be a thousand years old, but died at the age of 930 (Gen 5:5) Eve's age at the time of her death is not certain, as she's no longer mentioned after bearing Seth. Her omission in events afterwards would seemingly indicate that she did not live nearly as long as Adam did.

            So God did not lie, but rather His view of time is alot different than ours, which given the fact that He has no beginning or end, makes this obvious.

            Edit: It's noteworthy to point out that no human has lived to be 1,000 years old. The closest was Methuselah, Adam's descendant through his son, Seth; he lived to be 969 years old and died shortly before the Great Flood.
            Last edited by Benjamin; 08-22-2005, 02:41 AM.

            Comment


            • #7
              Even though all humans die, those who accept Jesus are granted everlasting life (John 3:16). In Revelations, The earth and Heavens join and become one. Does the Bible make a distinction between spiritual death and death on the earth? And how does that tie into the prophesies of the Old Testament and what is revealed in the book of Revelations about life and death?

              Comment


              • #8
                St John Chrysostom on the power of the devil, read carefully.

                http://www.newadvent.org/fathers/1909.htm

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by SlimPhatty
                  "the woman said to the serpent, We may eat the fruit from the trees of the garden,
                  Except the fruit from the tree which is in the middle of the garden. God has said, You shall not eat of it, neither shall you touch it, lest you die."

                  well she did touch it and Adam ate it and they didn't die, so therefore God lied?

                  Yeah like Benjamin said, they did die. In a more horrible way than you could have imagined.

                  That was the fall of man. That's why we're mortal. That's why we're sinful. That's why we have to go through such trials and chastisement to reach salvation.

                  All the suffering of mankind comes from there.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Part 4: What did God do to save humankind?

                    In Part 3, we learned that through genetics, we've inherited sin, which includes sickness, old age, and eventually death. So how can God reverse this?

                    Although the Bible does not say so explicitly, I'm willing to bet the Devil thought he won. How so? He was successful in turning the first human pair against God, and in doing so, condemning themselves and their children to endless suffering and death. Romans 6:23a states:

                    "For the wages sin pays is death ..."

                    Someone might ask, "could God just forget about it and just make us perfect?" No, for that would be breaking the very laws he instituted. So at this point, it look like God was checkmated, but that would be a gross underestimation. I quoted from Genesis 3:15 in which I pointed out that there only two sides here, the Devil's seed and God's. Let's take a look at the scripture once again:

                    "And I shall put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed. He will bruise you in the head and you will bruise him in the heel."

                    The Devil must have asked, "Who is 'he' that God is talking about?" God also stated that this person will bruise the Devil in the head, and he will bruise this person in the heel. It is worth noting that a blow to the head of a snake is usually fatal. "Bruising him in the heel" would seem to indicate that the Devil will injure this person, but the damage is not permanent.

                    So who is this person? Yep, you've guessed it, it's Jesus Christ. So, we should learn a bit more about him. Most people know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, but other angels are also referred to as 'sons of God', and even some humans had the same description. (See Job 1:6; Deuteronomy 14:1, 2)

                    However Jesus was special as he's described as such:

                    "For God loved the world so much that he gave his only-begotten Son, in order that everyone exercising faith in him might not be destroyed but have everlasting life."

                    What does "only-Begotten" mean? Well, of course, "begotten" is the past verb tense for the verb "beget" which means:

                    be·get Audio pronunciation of "beget" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (b-gt)
                    tr.v. be·got, (-gt) be·got·ten, (-gtn) or be·got be·get·ting, be·gets

                    1. To father; sire.
                    2. To cause to exist or occur; produce:


                    The fact is, Jesus was the only person created directly by God. Notice what is written regarding his beginnings in relation to all other creation:

                    "He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; 16 because by means of him all [other] things were created in the heavens and upon the earth, the things visible and the things invisible, no matter whether they are thrones or lordships or governments or authorities. All [other] things have been created through him and for him. 17 Also, he is before all [other] things and by means of him all [other] things were made to exist ..." (Colossians 1:15-17)

                    So, Christ was the firstborn of all creation, and apparently God used him (like an instrument) to create all other life. Well, that explains why he could be referred to as "only-Begotten". As seen in John 3:16, God sent his Son to give his life for ours. But why would it only take one life to save billions of other lives? Once again, Romans 5:12 says:

                    "That is why, just as through one man sin entered into the world and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men because they had all sinned ..."

                    So our present condition is because of Adam, and Adam alone. It is noteworthy to see that Eve is not mentioned as the cause of mankind's downfall. For while she was deceived, Adam was not, and chose willfully to rebel against God. Later on Paul stated:

                    "For the wages sin pays is death, but the gift God gives is everlasting life by Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 6:23)

                    But how this possible? Through God's holy spirit, Mary became pregnant. (Luke 1:30, 31, 34, 35) This is not hard to believe for the Bible speaks of God using his holy spirit to create the earth (see Genesis 1), surely he could use the same power to create a human life. But since God was, in effect, the "Father" (which means lifegiver), Jesus did not inherit the sinfuless that Adam had passed down. Whatever imperfections Mary possessed was cancelled out by the perfect holy spirit of God.

                    Now some suppose that Jesus was a half-man, half-God incarnate, but this would not be suitable for what God had in mind. Notice what's said about Jesus sacrifice:

                    "Just as the Son of man came, not to be ministered to, but to minister and to give his soul a ransom in exchange for many." (Matthew 20:28)

                    Definition of "Ransom":

                    ran·som Audio pronunciation of "ransom" ( P ) Pronunciation Key (rnsm)
                    n.


                    1. The release of property or a person in return for payment of a demanded price.


                    In this case, he's giving his life as the price to buy back what Adam lost: opportunity to live an endless happy life [this would be the "property" in question]. If he was anything but human, the ransom would be invalid, because he would have to just as Adam was before he sinned, a perfect human being. As I stated at the very beginning, life is not a right, it is a gift, and is conditional.

                    Obviously, the Devil tried to do the same with Jesus as he did with Adam, tempt him into rebelling against God. However, Jesus, unlike Adam, remained faithful despite whatever temptations the Devil presented. When it was clear that Jesus would not betray his father, the Devil had him killed using the religious leaders, and of course, one of Jesus' own disciples, Judas. (John 13:27) Hence, the Devil did "bruise him in the heel". But unlike Adam, Jesus' death was not permanent, for the simple fact that he did not deserve to die, unlike us. He was resurrected three days after his death (Matthew 16:1-8)

                    Because of his faithfulness, God purposed him to be the King of his new Kingdom (or government) that will eventually replace all the ones that are on the earth now. (1 Peter 3:22; Daniel 2:44)

                    At Revelation 19:11-15, the King Jesus Christ is vividly described as coming with great power to destroy the wicked, and to end the suffering that afflicts millions today. And he is just as eager to help those striving to imitate the perfect example he set while on earth. (1 Peter 2:21) He wants to preserve them through the rapidly approaching “war of the great day of God the Almighty,” often called Armageddon, so that they can live forever as earthly subjects of God’s heavenly Kingdom.—Revelation 7:9, 14; 16:14, 16

                    As you've probably guessed, when this happens, two issues will have come to fruition, and the sides that are chosen. Those who side with Christ will remain on the earth as subjects of God's kingdom as originally purposed, or those with the Devil will be destroyed. In the next part, I will address the future and how it relates to all of us.

                    [End of Part 4]

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Benjamin, you would make a very good CATHOLIC priest. I suggest you look into it. However, I still believe the biblical definition of Satan is a representation of ones "self" and not a (character) in the book. The devil is always there with you in life, as is god. And why does the devil need to exist anyways? What purpose does the "devil" serve when god at the end of the day when god is still the judge, juror and executioner? Why does the devils working not effect the animals around us? or the trees? why is gods work out there but the Devils non-existant? I believe god made the world EXACTLY how he intended to make it, and the Devil is nothing more than a scapegoat or a passing of the buck for bad "human" behavior. again leading us back to the fact that the Bible was written as a text of law where lethal injection was not so much the punishment as inccuring gods wrath is.
                      One convienient location...... somewhere in Africa.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by gdillinjah
                        Benjamin, you would make a very good CATHOLIC priest. I suggest you look into it. However, I still believe the biblical definition of Satan is a representation of ones "self" and not a (character) in the book. The devil is always there with you in life, as is god. And why does the devil need to exist anyways? What purpose does the "devil" serve when god at the end of the day when god is still the judge, juror and executioner? Why does the devils working not effect the animals around us? or the trees? why is gods work out there but the Devils non-existant? I believe god made the world EXACTLY how he intended to make it, and the Devil is nothing more than a scapegoat or a passing of the buck for bad "human" behavior. again leading us back to the fact that the Bible was written as a text of law where lethal injection was not so much the punishment as inccuring gods wrath is.
                        I don't think my beliefs exactly "jive" with the Catholic religion. As for the rest of what you said, I really don't have much comment.

                        It's as I've always stated, people will believe what they want to believe. I won't sit here and try to change your mind. All I'm doing is trying to answer the most common questions people have about Christianity. I also want to present how grave the situation is, and how all of us have choices to make.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Part 5: The future and you ...

                          In Part 4, we learned that God has "made a way out" for us in terms of having the same opportunity to life as Adam and Eve did.

                          However, this provision is not automatic. So what is required?

                          Actually, what is required of us is no different than what was required of the first human couple--obedience. In our case though, it's a lot harder. We don't live in a paradisaic garden with no vices, and on top of that, we have to wage war against our sinful inclinations and the Devil himself.

                          The first thing I want to say is, no one is perfect. While this seems rather obvious, it seems that there's a tendency amongst other humans to get up on our high horse and judge others. This is specifically prohibited according to biblical principles, mainly because God already has appointed someone to do the judging:

                          "I'm not aware of anything that would disqualify me from being a good guide for you, but that doesn't mean much. The Master makes that judgment. So don't get ahead of the Master and jump to conclusions with your judgments before all the evidence is in. When he comes, he will bring out in the open and place in evidence all kinds of things we never even dreamed of--inner motives and purposes and prayers. Only then will any one of us get to hear the "Well done!" of God."

                          That's true, we will all be judged according to own deeds. So the logical question is, what must we do receive a favorable judgment? Well, when Christ walked the earth, he did away with the old Covenant that Moses gave to the Ancient Jews, and replaced it with a better one that applies to us all. There are two fundamental commandments:

                          "And behold, a lawyer stood up to put him to the test, saying, "Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?" He said to him, "What is written in the law? How do you read?" And he answered, "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself." And he said to him, "You have answered right; do this, and you will live." (Luke 10:25-28)

                          Someone may ask: "Okay, how can I show love for God?"

                          The Bible answers that too ..

                          "For this is the love of God, that we keep his commandments. And his commandments are not burdensome." (1 John 5:3)

                          So in essence, our obedience is what counts. If you think about it, it makes perfect sense. Would you believe your child when he or she says: "I love you" but never listens to anything you have to say? Not really. The same applies here.

                          However, I like to be realistic. It's going to be hard to do so. I remember reading the thread Jason put up about D12 members getting inappropriate comments for no apparent reason other than just 'hatin' on them. In the same way, if you start trying to do things the right way, the same will happen to you.

                          There will be people who argue that the Bible is full of nonsense.

                          The Devil doesn't exist.

                          The laws God has for humans are archaic and impractical.

                          etc

                          To those accusations I ask, isn't that what the Devil insinuated to Eve? Didn't he tell Eve that doing things her way, by deciding for herself is the best thing for her and her husband? See the parallel?

                          The Devil's goal is to make God's way of doing things seem like the worst decision you can ever make. However, the one advantage is, if you read everything up to this point, you'd realize that. You see, he has nothing else to lose except his own life, so he intends to take as many people as he can:

                          "Keep YOUR senses, be watchful. YOUR adversary, the Devil, walks about like a roaring lion, seeking to devour [someone]."

                          The Devil can't kill you directly, nor would it do any good since God can resurrect the dead as he did his own Son. So the only way he has a chance to kill you is trick you into forfeiting your own life willingly, by joining his side.

                          If you take a look at recent events, professing to have a religion gets you more 'hate' than you can ever think of. Many people, including some on this board, would tell you that religious zealots are the reason the world is as bad as it is. That would be only half-correct. The correct answer is:

                          "People have twisted religion, especially Christianity, to conform to their own bizarre lifestyle thereby causing others to label all those who profess a belief as 'stupid' or 'brainwashed'"

                          For example, President Bush professes to be Christian, and believes that God is guiding his actions, like his decision to invade Iraq almost 2 and a half years ago. This has given Christianity a bad name, given how much bloodshed there has been on both sides. Yet, as we've seen earlier, the 2nd greatest commandment give to us Christians is to "love your neighbor as yourself". This alone would prevent any true Christian to take up arms against another. Not to mention that God has already purposed a time set aside to deal with all those wicked, but he won't use humans to accomplish this. He will use angels along with his appointed Son, and humans will have no part in this warfare. (Revelation 19; Daniel 4:35)

                          I could go on, but the point has been made. Christianity has been misrepresented to the masses. But would the Devil have it any other way? What better way to prevent people from believing God than to twist the scripture to do unheard of attrocities 'in the name of God'?

                          The biggest problem with us, especially the younger people is distractions. We all have things we'd like to do. Someone want to be famous like the rappers we often hear about on this site. But yet, with Eminem being in the hospital for addiction to sleeping pills tells you that being rich, famous, and talented does not mean you're any happier. All it does is swap one set of problems for another.

                          Okay, so you're serious about doing the right thing. What now?

                          First thing, you would need to do is build faith. Most people's faith in religion is largely traditional--as in they just believe what they parents believe. That does not serve as a solid foundation for faith in God. Faith is based on accurate information presented that gives you reason to believe that God will fulfill all his promises in the future as he's done without fail in the past.

                          The best way to do that is to learn about God. You cannot have faith in anyone if you don't have any information about the person. And if your faith is not based on accurate information, would it not mean that you're liable to be mislead people who claim to HAVE the right information only to find out that they don't? To show how imperative it is to have accurate information, I'll quote John 17:3:

                          "This means everlasting life, their taking in knowledge of you, the only true God, and of the one whom you sent forth, Jesus Christ."

                          So our very lives are involved ... How comforting :/

                          So for those who are interested, I'll be willing to study. What I mean about study, is that I cover any material you feel that you need to know, including answering any questions you may have. Why am I doing this? You've guessed it, it's a biblical commandment. In the words of the Apostle Paul:

                          "Woe to me if I do not preach the Gospel!" (1 Co 9:16)

                          The word "gospel" means "good news". The good news is that the deplorable cesspool of evil we live in called "human society" will not always be this way. As I pointed out before, all of us have the opportunity to gain what Adam and Eve lost: the ability to live forever here on earth without worrying about hunger, disease, war, strife, and most importantly--death. Now, we need to take action to show that we're serious about being part of the new society of individuals that will enjoy this reward. (Revelation 21:3, 4)

                          As Captain Planet stated in that horrible kids TV show .. "The choice .. is yours!"

                          [The End]

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                          • #14
                            At this point, I'll answer any legitimate question anyone has about the Bible or God. Any questions that's deemed stupid or aggregious I won't answer period.

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                            • #15
                              A few questions I have thought about.

                              1. Do you think the existence of Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism are the devils doing to deceive people into not following the word of God?

                              2. The Old Testament has VERY extreme scriptures. Some verses speak of capital punishment for crimes like theft. What is the story on this, and did Jesus call those scriptures invalid when he came to Israel?

                              3. In Romans (I think its Romans) Government of the people is taught. How does the Bible believe man should govern?

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