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33

This question cuts to the core of an apparent conflict between the teachings of James and Paul. Here's some of the relevant scripture: James 2:17-18, 24 (NIV) 17 In the same way, faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. 18 But someone will say, “You have faith; I have deeds.” Show me your faith without deeds, and I will show you ...


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 ...


24

The issue is not that OECs have a "weak faith," but we believe we are taking a more appropriate view of the scripture. Indeed, if the text is written metaphorically (as we believe), then reading it literally is the weaker position. If you don't want to read my rather long (yet still way too short to pay true justice to this topic) answer, I suggest jumping ...


20

In 1670, Blaise Pascal published Pensees, which was a defense of the Christian religion. (It should be noted that this book was published after his death in 1662.) In that book, he has a quote: “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every person, and it can never be filled by any created thing. It can only be filled by God, made known through ...


19

At one level, this question is easily answerable. Christianity is based upon the idea that Jesus is who He claimed to be. And He said, in John 14:6 I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. And if Jesus is who He claimed to be, then Christianity must be the only true religion, because He said ...


16

It would be unnatural to never have doubts. If you blindly accept everything you are told then you will end up believing in lots of contradictory things. When you have a doubt, turn it into a challenge to get answers. Read the scriptures to find answers and pray for affirmation and your doubt will be replaced with confidence.


16

Muslims may not appreciate (or perhaps they would) this distinction. But Hilare Belloc claims in The Great Heresies, that Islam is a heresy of Christianity. Therefore, if Mohammed had had a vague inkling of Christianity and claim the inheritance of Ishmael then yeah, of course they worship the same God. However, we couldn't say they worship Him fully ...


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 ...


16

First a disclaimer, I come from the camp that salvation is by faith alone. The answer will be coming from my perspective, since the question seems to be geared toward those who hold this view. It also intentionally goes against the definition of Christianity as accepted for the sake of this community because I think that it's the only way to address the ...


15

Clearly not I do not think either a Christian or Muslim would hold to that. The only people who would like to think so are Universalists, but that is not really the orthodox position. John 14:6 (NIV) Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.


15

I don't think the world was created in such a complex way that there are always new discoveries to be made just to test our faith. I would say that God can use scientific discoveries to help us test and fortify our own faith. I think Proverbs 25:2 can be applied here. I believe scientific discoveries are really just discovering what God has hidden. Is ...


14

Short Answer, YES; Long Answer, YES YES First we need to define what repentance is. The word in Greek is Metanoeo which means: To change ones mind. The word repent in Hebrew is Nacham which means to: to be sorry, be moved to pity, have compassion. Repentance is a state of mind, of sorrow over your actions. Now that we understand the word's definition ...


14

Romans 3:23 (NIV) for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God No one is righteous. Better is not enough. God demands 100% holiness. No one can achieve that. Therefore, we need the Blood of Jesus Christ. Only in Jesus, can we have salvation. Romans 5:12 (NIV) Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through ...


13

Pauline-Lutheran answer According to Paulus and later Luther's doctrine, faith is enough – it's the famous Justification by faith alone. Realizing that, Luther changed from a late scholastic to a reformer. The realization is based on Romans 1:17 (NIV), which says: For in the gospel the righteousness of God is revealed—a righteousness that is by faith ...


13

The correct answer to this question is clearly … <err, not so fast> You see that's just the problem. Christianity doesn't have a clear unequivocal answer to this question that is broadly agreed on across traditions. Islam has now been around for about 1400 years promoting its ideas about the nature of God – who they usually claim is the same God ...


13

Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. NKJV Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see. NIV Faith is tangible in a certain sense of the word in that it is tangible to me and God. Hebrews 11:6 And without faith it is impossible to please God, ...


13

Because God decided faith was an absolute requirement in His kingdom: But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is Hebrews 11:6 KJV Actually, Jesus is apparently frustrated with those who desire the type of "sign" you suggest: And he sighed deeply in his spirit, and saith, Why doth this ...


12

I'm going to have to limit my quotes from Scripture and leave some compelling verses out, because there are simply so many. This answer would be even longer than my normal long-winded answers if I included all supporting Scripture references. Please forgive me if I miss something you consider relevant. First, there is the entire book of Romans, which ...


12

Unfortunately, the problem is a result of the "Modern Gospel". (God is love, come to Him and He will fix your broken marriage, drug problem, financial woes, etc.) The Gospel as told in Scripture is not even close to what's being preached by most Evangelical Churches today. (That we're sinners who have offended God by our selfishness, disobedience, and ...


12

The term "born again" comes from a passage in John 3: Now there was a Pharisee, a man named Nicodemus who was a member of the Jewish ruling council. He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the signs you are doing if God were not with him.” Jesus replied, “Very truly I ...


12

Reasons (my rantings) we can't talk to God - Result of our sin. Romans 3:23 "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" We all inherit the sin of Adam. Adam could talk directly to God but as we fell from grace we lost access to divine grace. But one day we would talk to Him directly. As a test. If one could see God face to face, ...


11

I think it is important to consider how you would react if God did exactly what you asked for, in an unmistakable way. While doing so consider the many times in the Bible where Jesus healed people. The Pharisees saw this and knew (or should have known) they were dealing with the Christ. Yet they plotted to kill Him. They would have seen the evidence for ...


11

The much used ode to faith in the NT book of Hebrews tells us a little bit about what faith is. Here are the first couple verses: Hebrews 11:1-3 (ESV) Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the people of old received their commendation. By faith we understand that the universe was created by the ...


11

First of all, this is definitely something that should be left to God. A great example is in Jude: Jude 1:9 (NLT) 9 But even Michael, one of the mightiest of the angels, did not dare accuse the devil of blasphemy, but simply said, “The Lord rebuke you!” (This took place when Michael was arguing with the devil about Moses’ body.) Satan is ...


11

God expects us to use our own minds: Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you. Psalm 32:9 And he expects us to achieve and be proud of our accomplishments, so that we don't burden others: Each one should test his own actions. Then he can take pride in ...


11

These two lines of reasoning are, as you've presented them, problematic as you suggest. Ideally, they'd be used together and be founded in the true message of the gospel. First, the few details to be cleared up: I don't understand how can someone venerate Jesus for his act of ultimate selflessnes and love (the crucifixion) but at the same time try to ...


11

Faith without Good Deeds Is Dead (James 2:14-26 NLT) First, What is salvation? Many times, people tend to misunderstand the meaning of the salvation that Christ brings. One of the primary purposes of the salvation of Christ is the forgiveness of sins - the ultimate sacrifice in which you need to believe in order to be saved. This does not mean that faith ...


11

First question to ask is what are Christians being saved from or for? Thankfully someone has saved me time from having to write that answer up (Thanks @Caleb): What does it mean to "be saved" Again, I would promote the necessity of relationship with God so that a follower knows the nature of God well enough to know what His desire for us. This is ...


10

Yes. And God's grace is such that you can just be honest. Consider Mark 9:24, one of my favourite NT verses: 'Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”' Doubt mixed with faith is natural. Jesus' response is not recorded - so apparently He was neither surprised nor condemning.



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