> Introductions, Announcements, and More of Ray's Teachings


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Hello, my name is Mark. I live in Nashville, TN. When I came to the faith of Christ some years ago, I was very certain from the onset that Jesus Christ is very real, as is His promise. But the hell doctrine was like a bug bite that I couldn't help scratching. Though I sensed that it must be wrong, I was also convinced that in order to make that claim it would be necessary to have sound, thorough, biblical support for it. But for some reason I kept asking the wrong questions for quite a while and coming up with very little, until one day I simply started asking the right ones. And then there appeared a great wealth of information about the meanings of words, their context, and the history of hell.

The next issue I was bitten by was the mystery of iniquity, It was difficult for me to accept that God is the author of evil. But I kept worrying over it and eventually came to understand that there is nothing whatsoever, great or small, at any level of analysis that doesn't conform precisely to His will and command, which leaves no room for human free will, or even free choice. But we obviously make choices every day, and it certainly seems to us that we are making decisions as we go along. And the bible text contains many injections to do X and refrain from Y, some of these even expressed conditionally, which gives an impression that we do have choices to make. But I think it's just that, an impression, and that God communicates to us, through scripture, at the level of our perception and subjective impression, and that He gives ears to hear, hearts to understand, and wills to obey to whomsoever He wills, when He wills, such that there is a great order to His creative work.

But we're not robots. Though we make no choices for ourselves in actuality, we're nonetheless enjoined to make the right ones. And we experience making choices and learning from our mistakes. I think God has set things up in this manner to make something of us, though our experience, both personal and historical, that Adam was not. Because we're not God we can't claim this, but since He knows the end from the beginning, the means He uses to accomplish His purpose is justified by the end. It seems to me that we're really very much like actors on a stage, though a real one made of flesh, blood and bone, playing all of our various parts which are very precisely directed by God to provide us with a necessary experience to fulfill His creative intention, and I'm confident that, when the curtain is drawn on the last act in this great drama, there will be nobody who has ever lived who will complain about God's methodology or about having been a robot

Best Regards,

Greetings Mark!
Welcome to the forum.


Dennis Vogel:
Welcome Mark!

Greetings Mark,

It truly is a blessing to believe in the sovereignty of God. It frees us from many false doctrines. :)

Dave in Tenn:
Good to meet you, Mark.


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