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Author Topic: How do we handle the hard truths?  (Read 7797 times)

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TimothyVI

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How do we handle the hard truths?
« on: March 27, 2007, 09:04:40 PM »

Recently one of these threads had some disturbing posts by one of our brothers who was angry, and in obvious pain, because of recently learning that God did some pretty horrendous things in the old testament. A new Christian will generally start learning about the love of Jesus, reading about how God is love and about all of the wonderful things that God does for us out of love. The new testament is chock full of such glorious things.
A new Christian starts to look at Christianity through rose colored glasses.

Then all of a sudden this new believer sees a different God in the old testament. This God is very disturbing to us. Then as we read more about Him we may at first feel disgusted that our God could do these kinds of things that are told in the first five books of the bible. Eventually we may even become angry. Angry at God for what he did, angry with ourselves that we were fooled into believing how good God was when this God does not seem to be that good at all. Eventually this anger may turn into disbelief. You want to believe that the bible just plain isn’t even true. That the terrible things that God was supposed to have commanded were just made up.

When this happens the person may not know who to turn to for an explanation.
They do not want to hear things like “if God did it, then it had to be good, or it had to be moral”.  If it was clearly an immoral act by any standard, that person does not want to hear that he must accept it because he can not question God’s methods.
God, after all, gave us a mind and a conscience for a reason, He intends for us to use them.

If that person is a member of this forum family, then he very well may not have an actual church family to help him. This may be the only place for that person to turn.

I am not questioning the closing of the thread by the moderators. Lord knows I appreciate how difficult their job must be. I realize that they have an obligation to maintain some semblance of harmony on this forum. I love them all for what they do.
I just wonder what we, as brothers and sisters in Christ, should do with the truly hard questions, the questions that Sorin had on his mind. If the actual scriptures that were posted are so distasteful that we must close down a thread rather than have to read them, or if the questions are so hard that we can not answer them, then perhaps the problem lies with each of us, and not with the person asking the questions.

When we deny that a problem exists because we are unable to deal with it, we are not much different than the Pharisees to whom Jesus said “Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves.

Moderators, feel free to close this thread, or delete it if you wish.
I love Rays teaching and the bibletruths site. I am just saddened that there is not more that we can do to help a brother who is obviously in spiritual pain.

Tim
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gmik

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #1 on: March 27, 2007, 09:18:10 PM »

I feel the pain for our brother Sorin.  I wonder about those questions but just not to that extent....Tim, what IS the answer?

That thread was loaded w/ love & wisdom.  But it didn't answer the question.  Maybe we don't know it yet. 

There has to come a time in our walk where we give all those questions to God, humbly, and by faith, just knowing that we are nothing and He is Everything.  Lord, tho you slay me yet will I follow thee...
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DWIGHT

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #2 on: March 27, 2007, 10:18:42 PM »

Dear Tim,

Although I appreciate your sensitivity concerning Sorin, I must admit that if I was a moderator I would have done the same as they.  This isn't the first time this has happened, and who knows how many times they may have warned him.  I think Tim, they are looking at the big picture and how many people we have looking at us each day.  You have to say brother, that some of the things that were said were close to blasphemy.  I do not think this forum should allow such negativity..that's not the purpose.  Plus who's not to say that such a rebuke won't be beneficial.  This was done many times in the New Testament.  It doesn't mean that we don't love him.  I understand that it is not the most pleasant way, but if there is another maybe some could recommend.

In Him,

Dwight
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Kat

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2007, 10:36:05 PM »

Hi Tim,

The subject that was being discussed was not and easy topic, and sometimes we need to discuss these type things, that we may come to a better understanding of a matter.  
That subject, in my opinion, was used to call into question God's righteousness.  It was not immediately closed, but gave people a chance to answer this, which was done by quite a few.  The answers were not excepted and the discussion began to heat up, as a cycle was beginning to develop of questioning God and people replying to that.  
I do not feel that this kind of debate is appropriate or helpful for the forum.  It is not a place to air your grieves against God.  This forum is mainly a haven for those who want to fellowship and discuss BT.  When there is discord and lack of agreement this disturbs the peace of the forum.  
Nobody here can give someone else understanding unless God opens their eye, we can only share what we believe.  The discussions we have are a good way to share what we believe, but if it erupts into a debate, then this needs to be resolved soon or it must be closed.
This is my personal understanding of how to apply the rules of this forum.  If anyone disagrees with anything I have stated, please pm me and we will discuss it futher.

mercy, peace, and love
Kat

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Redbird

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #4 on: March 28, 2007, 01:01:23 AM »

Hello everyone,

May I suggest that we pray for our brother Sorin ~ as he is clearly going through spiritual warfare.

Love in Christ,
Lisa
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YellowStone

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #5 on: March 28, 2007, 01:03:49 AM »

Dwight you wrote:

I think Tim, they are looking at the big picture and how many people we have looking at us each day.  You have to say brother, that some of the things that were said were close to blasphemy.  I do not think this forum should allow such negativity..that's not the purpose.


Dwight, I respect your opinion and agree with most of it; however, I could care less about the negativity if it is part of the rocky, twisted road to the truth. There was truth behind the Scriptures Sorin asked, and I for one was eager to learn. Not that I thought I had to, but truth is truth which becomes knowledge that is faith. What I would ask is that this forum does not become so political that negativity is viewed more negative than the truth is positive.

Sorin, I believe is hurting bad. He should be in all of our prayers. :)

Much love to you brother Dwight,

Love,
Darren
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Robin

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2007, 06:48:21 AM »

I struggle hard every day to maintain my faith and fight off the spiritual attack against God's character in the middle of all the fiery trials.

It's one thing to question and put your honest questions before God and another thing to attack God's character.

My prayers go out for Sorin. It's a fierce battle for me and I can see the battle that he is in, but I do not think we should give blaspheme a voice on this forum. If I am ever caught in this snare I would hope that you would come against it with everything you have. It took the whole armour of God for me to be able to stand against what was written in that thread.

Revelation 13
6And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his name, and his tabernacle, and them that dwell in heaven.

James 4
7Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.
8Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded.
 

Ephesians 6
11Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

 12For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

 13Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

 14Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

 15And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

 16Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

 17And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

 18Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

 19And for me, that utterance may be given unto me, that I may open my mouth boldly, to make known the mystery of the gospel,

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TimothyVI

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2007, 08:34:17 AM »

Dear Tim,

Although I appreciate your sensitivity concerning Sorin, I must admit that if I was a moderator I would have done the same as they.  This isn't the first time this has happened, and who knows how many times they may have warned him.  I think Tim, they are looking at the big picture and how many people we have looking at us each day.  You have to say brother, that some of the things that were said were close to blasphemy.  I do not think this forum should allow such negativity..that's not the purpose.  Plus who's not to say that such a rebuke won't be beneficial.  This was done many times in the New Testament.  It doesn't mean that we don't love him.  I understand that it is not the most pleasant way, but if there is another maybe some could recommend.

In Him,

Dwight

Hi Dwight,

I am not questioning whether closing thee thread was right or not. If I was a moderator, I may have done the same thing.
I understand that they have rules to inforce on this forum.

I just do not know how to answer a new, struggling Christian who has the same questions as Sorin had.
If the bible tells us that God ordered children killed, then it is not blasphemy for us to repeat that GOd ordered children killed.
I also do not think that it is blasphemy to question why He would do such a thing.
It is, in my opinion, our duty as fellow Christians to have an answer for the questions though.
If we have no answer, God may lose another follower because of our inability to defend our belief.
Not defend God. He needs no defense. But defend our reasoning for not feeling the same as the person asking the
question.

This probably can not be answered in this forum. I know that my answers to Sorin would have been woefully inadequate.
In my private life I have new Christians starting to ask the same kind of things of me and I can't defend my own belief.

Tim
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TimothyVI

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2007, 08:36:04 AM »

Hi Tim,

The subject that was being discussed was not and easy topic, and sometimes we need to discuss these type things, that we may come to a better understanding of a matter.  
That subject, in my opinion, was used to call into question God's righteousness.  It was not immediately closed, but gave people a chance to answer this, which was done by quite a few.  The answers were not excepted and the discussion began to heat up, as a cycle was beginning to develop of questioning God and people replying to that.  
I do not feel that this kind of debate is appropriate or helpful for the forum.  It is not a place to air your grieves against God.  This forum is mainly a haven for those who want to fellowship and discuss BT.  When there is discord and lack of agreement this disturbs the peace of the forum.  
Nobody here can give someone else understanding unless God opens their eye, we can only share what we believe.  The discussions we have are a good way to share what we believe, but if it erupts into a debate, then this needs to be resolved soon or it must be closed.
This is my personal understanding of how to apply the rules of this forum.  If anyone disagrees with anything I have stated, please pm me and we will discuss it futher.

mercy, peace, and love
Kat



Believe me Kat, I do not question your actions.
I think that you are doing a wonderful job as moderator of this forum.
You are a blessing to Bibletruths.

Tim
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YellowStone

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #9 on: March 28, 2007, 08:45:13 AM »

MG, Thank you so much for your post. :)

I agree with you about needing the whole armour of God after reading that post. Perhaps such posts should be deleted by the Mods as soon as they are discovered and the matter discussed privately between the said poster and the moderator, if the moderator so chooses.

Great Scriptures MG :)

We should remember them always! :)

Fare well Sorin, the prayers of many are with you.

Your brother in Christ,
Darren

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YellowStone

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #10 on: March 28, 2007, 10:10:20 AM »

Tim wrote:

I just do not know how to answer a new, struggling Christian who has the same questions as Sorin had. If the bible tells us that God ordered children killed, then it is not blasphemy for us to repeat that GOd ordered children killed. I also do not think that it is blasphemy to question why He would do such a thing. It is, in my opinion, our duty as fellow Christians to have an answer for the questions though. If we have no answer, God may lose another follower because of our inability to defend our belief. Not defend God. He needs no defense. But defend our reasoning for not feeling the same as the person asking the question.


Tim, well spoken; for I too would not know how to answer such questions and I would feel as if I have no basis for my faith. :(

As I posted earlier, and as you did, it cannot be blasphemy for us to repeat that GOd ordered children killed or women killed and raped. There MUST be sound reasoning behind such actions, for it is God who ordered such actions. That sound reasoning may be difficult to discern or comprehend, but there MUST be a TRUTHFUL way to answer such questions, other than shrugging ones shoulders and looking dumb. :)

Kat, do you know of any emails, papers in which Ray speaks on this subject. I for one would very much like to learn more on it.

Your brother in Christ,
Darren
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dogcombat

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #11 on: March 28, 2007, 10:43:17 AM »

This happened to me yesterday when I was discussing the latest paper series on Hell that Ray posted.  The person I was talking to, happened to ask a serious question about translation errors in bibles.  It was along the lines of "Why wouldn't there be one PERFECTLY translated bible?"  I couldn't recite the link to "Which Bible translation is best", so I told him I couldn't honestly answer his question.

This brother is one who questions a lot of things, and lately organized religion (which both he and I equate to a syndicate) is the thing that he has raised a ton of questions about.  I could only assure him that when it was time, God would reveal His truths to him.  He wanted me to show how God planned everything from the beginning and that nothing happened without Him knowing it (Isaiah 46:10), also how God works all things according to the counsel of His will (Ephesians 1:11).  He also let me know that our conversation was the 3rd he had regarding scripture (he had watched John Hagee earlier in the day preaching about the end times in Revelation, and I told him to read Ray's critique of Hagee damnable "Seven Wonders Of Hell" sermon).

He also wondered if Ray is a false prophet.  I reminded him that only God can open his eyes to the truth.  And that (truth) was not something the Church world gets but God gives.  He's beginning to see that the scriptures tell a 180 degree story that what the traditional chuch has been saying.  But all we can do is give what the Spirit leads us to say to someone who is having a hard time digesting God's truths and ways.  Sometimes "Silence Is Golden" because as Artucus noted those whom the Lord calls will "Hear my whisper".

Ches
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Kat

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #12 on: March 28, 2007, 10:51:00 AM »

Hi Tim,

Quote
It is, in my opinion, our duty as fellow Christians to have an answer for the questions though.
If we have no answer, God may lose another follower because of our inability to defend our belief.

I don't think 'our' ability to answer someone question will cause that person to fail or not.
I do believe that God leads the person who has a question, as well as a person who gives an answer.  "... all things according to the counsel of his will," (Eph 1:11). So it is not up to us, He will bring a person to understanding, when He so chooses.  
It is not blasphemy to ask a question about something you do not understand, it is blasphemy to show disrespect for God in any way, I would think saying what He is doing is evil is very disrespectful to Him.  That's not asking a question, that's a brazen opinion or blasphemy.

Darren, you suggest deleting posts.  
I know that I only do this if I see a post that is blatantly teaching heresy or very rude to another member.
At this time, I just don't feel like I need to make the decision to lock a thread or ban a member.  We have guys that have been doing this a lot longer than I have and can discern when this should be done.  You don't see a lot of posts from the other mods, they have jobs and families and things to deal with.  But they come in every day pretty much and check things out, if they see a problem they take care of it.  
I am in a situation that I can spend time here to fellowship and share, that is a blessing for me.  I love to read what others have to say and help out any way I can  :)

mercy, peace, and love
Kat


« Last Edit: March 28, 2007, 12:40:39 PM by Kat »
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YellowStone

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #13 on: March 28, 2007, 11:40:32 AM »

Kat,

You are doing a wonderful job :)

Please do not stop popping in and posting, because you are such a vital part of this (our) family.

Please forgive me if I offended you in anyway.

Love in Christ,
Your brother,
Darren
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TimothyVI

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #14 on: March 28, 2007, 11:44:25 AM »

Hi Tim,

Quote
It is, in my opinion, our duty as fellow Christians to have an answer for the questions though.
If we have no answer, God may lose another follower because of our inability to defend our belief.

I don't think 'our' ability to answer someone question will cause that person to fail or not.
mercy, peace, and love
Kat




This may very well be true Kat. In fact, I believe that everything is of God myself.
But what if it was God's will, that it was supposed to be our answer, that caused the person
to NOT fail?

If I am unable to supply the answer, then I failed what Peter required of us.
1Pe 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and [be] ready always to [give] an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

We should not expect God to accomplish all through devine interaction.
Some of what He wants to happen, He does through us.

Tim
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hillsbororiver

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #15 on: March 28, 2007, 11:48:10 AM »

I actually bowed out of that thread as there did not seem to be a humble search for truth on Sorin's part, just one blasphemous accusation after another, this is not the first time we have patiently attempted to provide council to our Brother Sorin.
 
2Ch 7:14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

Pro 16:18 Pride goeth before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.

Isa 1:18 Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.

Perhaps I missed something but I did not see a reasonable approach (by Sorin) in the manner he presented his questions, or any attempt at understanding the answers that were given to him.

Does God need to prove Himself to us or do we need to pray for the understanding of His Wisdom and ways, which are above our wisdom and ways (methods)?


We are compared to clay or pottery subject to the authority of the Master Potter.

Psa 2:9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.

Isa 29:16 Surely your turning of things upside down shall be esteemed as the potter's clay: for shall the work say of him that made it, He made me not? or shall the thing framed say of him that framed it, He had no understanding?

Isa 64:8 But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand.
 
Jer 18:6 O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter? saith the LORD. Behold, as the clay is in the potter's hand, so are ye in mine hand, O house of Israel.

Rev 2:27 And he shall rule them with a rod of iron; as the vessels of a potter shall they be broken to shivers: even as I received of my Father.

God created us and owns us part and parcel He can do with us as He pleases and in faith we not only accept this but praise Him for His plan of redemption and for the example of His Son our Lord.

In an earlier version of this topic I asked if it could be considered theft or vandalism if I went to a friend’s house and took a sledgehammer to his oil burning, unreliable 1973 Chevy Vega and had it towed away. After the mess was cleaned up (also by me) I had a brand new vehicle delivered to him that I paid for entirely, would that be an evil thing?

If God destroys this temporal corruptible flesh and replaces it with an incorruptible immortal spiritual body is that something we should despise? Only if we love and worship the beast within more than we love Him.

Let's also not forget that the OT is not just a history of Israel but a prophecy of the spiritual Kingdom, the utter destruction described in many parts of the OT are prophecies of the eventual and total death of all carnal action and thought in all creation.

Any questions asked in a humble manner where truth is being sought should be treated with patience and longsuffering, I saw none of this (humble spirit) in that thread's premise.


Pro 26:21 As coals are to burning coals, and wood to fire; so is a contentious man to kindle strife.
 
1Co 11:16  But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God.

1Ti 6:4  He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings.

I am not sure that this was an actual sincere quest for understanding, it seems apparent to me that this was a deliberate attempt to cause strife and division, should we give this type of action a podium here? Should it be tolerated limitlessly?

There have been more than a few that have done this in the past and there will be more in the future, we moderators purposely err on the side of caution but there is no godly purpose in continually giving heed to insincere questions and blasphemous statements in the name of tolerance.

His Peace and Wisdom to you,

Joe
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CEO

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #16 on: March 28, 2007, 12:08:52 PM »


Joe

     You made the right call.  I have been offline for one week and see numerous  new contributors , they nor we need to be thrown into a contentious group.  If we have a hard question we need to listen hard to our fellow members, not create strife.

                                        Askseeknock

                                         Charlie o
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iris

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #17 on: March 28, 2007, 01:33:09 PM »

I don't usually get into threads like this one(and the other one) because I don't feel I have anything worthwhile to add to the discussions, so I just stay on the sidelines and lurk.

While I was reading these threads a scripture came to mind so I thought I would throw it out there.

Isaiah 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and CREATE EVIL: I the Lord do all these things.

Jehovah God is a perfect God, and everything he does is perfect. We may not be able, right now, to see this. But as the light gets brighter and our eyes are opened wider, one day we will be able to understand.

As Joe said God created us and owns us part and parcel He can do with us as he pleases and in faith we not only accept this but praise Him for His plan of redemption and for the example of His Son our Lord.


Iris
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Kat

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #18 on: March 28, 2007, 02:03:58 PM »

Hi Tim,

Quote
If I am unable to supply the answer, then I failed what Peter required of us.
1Pe 3:15 But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and [be] ready always to [give] an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear:

I agree that we should give an answer, if we have the understanding.
Minsters in the church are ready to give answers all the time, but it's the wrong answer.
There is more to this "be ready always to give an answer,"  ready also means prepared.  We want to be sure our answer is scriptural.  With eSword at my fingertips, it's easier to answer here.  
But I think wrong answers are worse than no answer.

2Tim 2:14  Remind them of these things, and charge them before God not to quarrel about words, which does no good, but only ruins the hearers.
v. 15  Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth.
v. 16  But avoid irreverent babble, for it will lead people into more and more ungodliness,

So we have to "rightly handle the Word of Truth."  
We do not want to cause someone to be more confused.  
But it we are blessed with understanding, then we have a joy in sharing it.

Psa 119:130  The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.

mercy, peace, and love
Kat

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Deborah-Leigh

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Re: How do we handle the hard truths?
« Reply #19 on: March 28, 2007, 05:49:04 PM »

To add to what has already been truthfully, Scripturally and beautifully shared.

2 Cor3 : 13 - 17 Nor do WE act like Moses, who put a veil over his face so that the Israelites might not gaze upon the finish of the vanishing splendor which had been upon it. 14. In fact, their minds were grown hard and calloused, they had become dull and had lost the power of understanding: for until THIS PRESENT DAY,  when the Old Testament, the old covenant is being read, that same veil still lies on their hearts, not being lifted to reveal that IN CHRIST IT IS MADE VOID AND DONE AWAY. 15 Yes, down to THIS VERY DAY whenever Moses is read, a veil lies upon their minds and hearts 16. But whenever a person turns in repentance to the Lord, the veil is striped off and taken away.

Tim  I too have extended my fellowship to Sorin. I did not recieve any response but saddly saw that he went from bad to worse regarding his grieviences with our Father God and His Son. For whoesoever loves the Son loves also the Father. The Son is the God of the OT which Sorin was pointing fingers at by the way.

I believe that our time here in Forums is precious to us all. Each word we have for one another and our sharing of our like mindedness is for the purpose of building faith, edification and encouragement. When our faith is ignored or slighted or our God is defamed we should not be lukewarm!

If you notice, it is not so much about what questions are asked it is more about HOW they are asked and HOW the answers are received. Not knowing everything and not understanding everything is okay. Rebellion, rejection, arrogance and offence and abuse of our opportunity to love one another here, is quite a different story. To discern we can ask is this going...my way, your way or God's way?

To witness to the first Scripture on this post here's another :

 1 cor 5 :7 Purge, clean out the old leaven that you may be fresh new dough, still uncontaminated as you are, for Christ, our Passover Lamb, has been sacrificed.

2 cor 5 : 17 Therefore if any person is in-grafted in Christ, he is a new creation, a new creature altogether; the old previous moral and spiritual condition HAS PASSED AWAY. Behold, the fresh and new has come!

Eh 4 : 22 Strip yourselves of your former nature, put off AND DISCARD your old inerrant self, which characterized your previous manner of life and becomes corrupt through lusts and desires that spring from delusion;

This last Scripture makes me think of the OT being the former nature, the old leaven because Christ has come, died, risen and is coming again.

Here is the encouragement that unites with all who love God that we are Heb 12 : 2 Looking away from all that will distract, to Jesus, Who is the Leader and the Source of our faith....3 JUST THINK OF HIM who endured from sinners such grievous opposition and bitter hostility......

If our conversation is giving glory to my way or your way, then we can be sure it is not God's way and it will not be to HIS Glory. It is a mercy that the Mods are here and that ignorance is nipped in the bud!

Peace to you

Arcturus :)
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