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25

At the heart of this question (and many similar ones) is another question: Is God fair? If God requires acknowledgments of truths that people haven't had a chance to hear in order to be saved, then of course He is not fair. If we begin with the assumption that God will never act unjustly or unfairly though, then we can assume that He will make Divine ...


16

No. See 1 Peter 3 and 4. Starting from the death of Jesus, the Gospel has been preached to the dead as well as the living. 1 Peter 4:6 For for this cause was the gospel preached also to them that are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit. Bringing salvation to the dead who had ...


15

This answer presupposes that the claims of Christianity are true. Since Christians believe this, and this site is meant to give a "Christian" view of things, that's the presupposition required to properly answer this. I realize that many people don't believe the claims of Christianity, but the Truth of the claims isn't what's being asked or what's relevant ...


13

I'm unaware of Jesus preaching anywhere "that the faithful should give up their wealth and worldly possessions and spend a humble existence in servitude of God." In Luke chapter 18 we have the account of one person who Jesus said should divest himself of his worldly possessions and distribute his wealth to the poor if he would be perfect, but this is ...


13

The Spirit of God is everything that will make eternal life worthwhile. My understanding is that the full glory of God will be revealed to everyone at the time of judgement. Hell is torture because it is complete and utter separation from God, nothing more, nothing less. This will be torture for unbelievers and anti-believers because they will first have ...


13

It is problematic to spiritualize verses too quickly. Recall that the Proverbs were written by Jewish people living in the Jewish homeland of Israel under the Mosaic Covenant--not the New Covenant spoken of by Ezekiel and identified by Jesus at the Last Supper. This proverb is speaking about upright and wicked people living in the land of Israel at that ...


12

The Christian definition notion of hell itself already assumes in itself a belief in the Christian doctrines. As such, most atheists have exactly zero fear of hell, and it is considered merely an invention, typically either of fear or of control (depending on who you ask). As such, it isn't the atheists desire to exist in an afterlife without God - simply ...


12

There are two words which come to mind when I read the question, admonish and encourage, and I think we can explore both angles on this particular question. I tend to be a positive thinker, so I will refer to a passage on the latter word. 1 Thessalonians 5:11 (NIV) tells us to encourage and build one another up. This is explained in Verse 9 "For God did ...


9

I think it's important to first note that the bible teaches that everyone is convicted of sin, righteousness and judgement by the Holy Spirit (John 16:8). In other words, people have within them an intrinsic sense of whats right, wrong, and the fact that there is some ultimate accountability for the evil deeds they commit. Romans 1 and 2 indicate that ...


7

I think a proper answer to this question requires that we (re-)examine many of the verses used to form the opinion "Faith in Jesus is necessary for salvation." John 3:16: For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. What it says: Anyone who believes in God's son will ...


7

I think that to understand this issue, we need to question our base assumption of how salvation is "fair". We have a tendency to think about salvation like Whoever doesn't believe in Christ will be damned While that's true, it's a little misleading. We should think about it like Whoever believes in Christ will be saved The problem with the ...


7

The problem with the paradox, as I see it, is with one of your premises: 5) These non-Christian modes of behaviour, such as the books published by Dawkins, inevitably offend many Christians. While Christians may be offended by Dawkins, they should not love him any less. Clearly this is not always the reality. Many Christians do take offense at those ...


7

Perhaps the two "common" responses are not "intellectually satisfying", but at the very least, they are both highly biblical: And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation." {Mark 16:15} and for "Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." How then will they call on Him in whom they have not ...


7

It's because of The Great Commission given by Jesus Christ. Matthew 28:19-20 (NIV) 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” It's the ...


7

It depends what you mean by "once saved, always saved" (OSAS). That is usually a catch phrase of the Free Grace brand of evangelicals (Zane Hodges, Charles Stanley, et al.). That sort of doctrine is refuted better with regard to a James 2-type argument that true faith necessarily results in good works. The other brand of evangelicals that OSAS might ...


6

The Hell's Best Secret teaching is essentially a denouncement on what Ray Comfort calls "the modern Gospel", and a teaching on what he considers the proper use of Mosaic Law to prepare the heart for the Gospel. Early on in the message, he speaks of a certain denomination's evangelism efforts during what they called "the decade of Harvest": Let me make ...


6

The problem you raise is only a problem because a doctrine has been cherry-picked and used out of context. Taken in step with and understanding of God's Covenant relationship with men and the whole counsel of Scripture, this becomes a non issue. And no, your suggestions are not particularly in line with Reformed theology, at least not as a motivation for ...


6

I admittedly did not attend seminary; but ... The general advice I've heard in homilies (and in at least a few videos by prominent Catholics online) was reminded to me a few weeks back at a Bible study when I mentioned to the group about the pitfalls of arguing God, religion, morality, etc. on Facebook. The advice, in brief, is that our main purpose in ...


6

Approaches First of all, some people may evangelize in ways that would be considered "aggressive", but many others are not. In fact, the situation often determines the appropriate approach, so the same person could approach the same person in completely different ways, depending on the situation. When my mother saw me as a child wandering close to the ...


5

The value of a church's resources are based on market value. They don't necessarily have huge bank accounts. Churches have the same expenses any company would have, such as utilities. Now, older organizations, such as the Catholic Church, have large collections of art or relics that have value. But their value is only that to collectors, it's not like they ...


5

Intimacy is the key: God is relational, and even within the Trinity, we know that God is “three persons” that are relational. In His creation, God fashioned man for relationships. If one had to identify the Bible or God Himself with one word, “love” would be the most likely candidate. The reason is that “love” speaks specifically to “relationships”. ...


5

Luke 16 is your answer here. The rich man who is sent to hell clearly says, "Don't let my brothers join me here!" Ergo, hell is clearly NOT a reward. 19 “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20 At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the ...


5

Of course the answer will depend on which Christian tradition the answerer comes from, but since you requested passages from Scripture on the matter, here are a few to consider: Is Jesus your Lord? if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved -Romans 10:9 Do you live for ...


5

I would suggest the answer is found in the book of the Acts of the Apostles. There, Paul shared the gospel in various ways, such as popular culture (Acts 17:23, the unknown god) and local poetry (17:28). Then later he gave his personal testimony to the Jews of how Christ saved him and gave him a new purpose in life (22:1ff). Later he was taken and put in a ...


5

Asuming that there is one objectively True form of Christianity, the mere existence of the wide array of beliefs, some exclusive and contradictory to others means that some forms of Christianity must be false. Simply logic tells us that two mutually exclusive things can't both be true. Therefore, it follows that if some forms of Chrisianity must be false, ...


5

It is the Engel Scale. Originally it went from -8 "Awareness of supreme being, no knowledge of Gospel" to +5 "Stewardship" but now it is often shown as going from -10 to +10 (see eg Bill Hybel's Just Walk Across The Room). A quick Google search will reveal multiple variations, see eg this YWAM variant:


5

Christians go to missions inspired and commanded by the book of Matthew. Precisely: And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I ...


4

Christians often say that we should "love the sinner but hate the sin", and refer to this as a paradox. This completely misses the point. Sin might seem fun or pleasant for a time, but in the long run it destroys. It destroys our relationships with other people, it robs us of dignity, and of course it separates us from God. It is like a disease. My best ...


4

Albeit that the question is a little unclear as mentioned, I can still hopefully offer some thoughts for the heart of what you asked: How do you bridge the gap between giving a person a book and letting them make the most of it >and giving a person a book with the expectation that it will do some good? Christian writing today is not the same as the ...


4

A better question is, why wouldn't we? We have the truth, and the truth is that you may have eternal life by believing in Jesus Christ. Pardon me if I say so myself, and I think I speak for all Christians when I say this, but eternal life is not a bad thing. In fact, if we didn't want to convert anyone, if we just kept to ourselves, it either means 1) we ...



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