=> General Discussions => Topic started by: ericsteven on January 11, 2007, 12:17:33 AM

Title: My heart is broken
Post by: ericsteven on January 11, 2007, 12:17:33 AM
Hi everyone,

My name is Eric, and while I am new to the forum, I actually have been studying the teachings of Ray for about 8 months now - maybe even 10. 

For some reason, I have not felt the urge to stop attending worship and classes at the congregation in which I grew up.  I usually sit quietly and listen to the "by the numbers" answers to all the questions the teacher or preacher asks.  I've repeatedly asked God to keep my mouth shut until the time appointed by Him, if ever, for me to open it speak of what I believe.  Everyone repeats the answers that they've been taught from birth; no one presents anything new.  But I've used it as kind of a trial run - so to speak - to see if I could confidently defend what I've learned against what they teach.  I try to remember Scriptures, I try to remember examples from Scripture to use just in case I do need to present a defense someday for what I believe.

Tonight was our weekly Wednesday night class.  As it so happens, we are studying I Timothy.  And - you guessed it - the discussion tonight centered around the meaning of I Timothy 2:3-4.

This is good, and pleases God our Savior, who wants all men to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.

I remained silent until someone for some reason brought up that we have free will.  At which point I asked, "Doesn't the foreknowledge of God negate the free will of man?"  They, of course, kept saying that we have a choice, obviously interchanging choice and will.  When I gave the example of Judas - that "Jesus knew from the beginning when he chose Judas to be an apostle that Judas would betray him.  Did that mean that Judas could have of his own free will chosen to not betray Jesus?"  Many said that Judas could have chosen not to betray Jesus and even went so far as to say that Jesus gave Judas every opportunity to choose not to betray him. 

We then got off onto the subject of evil.  They, of course, said that God did not intend for evil to be in the world.  And you should have heard the silence in the room when I said that I beilieved He did and in fact I believed He created it.  There was dead silence and even a smirk of unbelief from one of the senior members of the congregation.  One of the elders, who was sitting right beside me whispered, "You are wrong.  Show me a scripture." 

I wasn't able to at that moment, since discussion had resumed with another gentleman saying that the Scriptures are simple to understand and that we shouldn't be reading into them more than what is on the page.  Since he didn't say my name, I chose not to give an answer, but I'm pretty sure he was making a comment on my beliefs.

Needless to say, for the rest of the class, I remained silent.  Interestingly enough, my parents were also in this class, and not once did they speak up, nor after class did they come to me with what they were thinking.  I can't say that they were embarrased or upset with what I was saying, since I haven't spoken with them, but tonight I think I got an inkling of what it may be like when Jesus said that he came not to bring peace, but division, even in our own families.

Anyway, after the teacher wrapped up, I sat with Joe, the elder who had whispered for me to show him the scripture concerning evil, at which point I directed him to Isaiah 45:7 and Amos 3:3-7.  We both had the NIV which translates ra' as disaster, but I explained that the Hebrew word was actually ra' which meant evil or bad, and that the word for create in Isaiah was bara' which is the same Hebrew word used in Genesis for when God created the heavens and the earth.

At which point, he looked at me and said, "Hmm.  It says it right there in the Bible, doesn't it?  Looks like this is something I'm gonna have to study more."  We talked for a few more moments about all being saved and what the purpose of evil might be.

I guess the point for this post is just for me to express my feelings.  While I am encouraged by my discussion with Joe, my heart broke all through the rest of the class.  I think I know what Jesus may have felt when he wept before raising Lazarus from the grave.  Some people think that he cried because Lazarus dies and that is how we know had feelings just like us.  I choose to believe he was crying because he was troubled in his heart by their unbelief.  Why would he grieve for the loss of Lazarus when he knew from the beginning when Mary's sisters came to him that he would raise Lazarus from the grave?  But that's another discussion.

But even now, for some reason of which I know not  :) I do not feel the urge to leave just yet.  I believe I have "come out of her" spiritually, but as for physically attending class and worship, I believe God may have some purpose for me to remain. 

I do appreciate Ray and all of you who post on this site.  Even though I haven't been active in the forum, I still take much encouragement and knowledge away from what everybody says - even those who don't agree.

Thanks to all those who have had the patience to sit through this little expression of heartbreak and be my sounding board for a little while.

Gods blessings to you all,

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: gmik on January 11, 2007, 12:36:24 AM
Eric, my heart goes out to you.  But I am impressed w/ how you handled yourself.  If you have read any of my posts I get flustered and forgetful when I try to talk about this.  I will be praying for you & Joe.  That was amazing.

While most of my family aren't even Christian so they don't really care, the two I care about the most don't "get" me.  That is my grown son & daughter. Every Sunday my son asks if I went to church (he lives in another state),  when I say no, he says why not and I say you know why not.l..we go thru this each week....He loves the idea of salvation for all but thinks I am going way off on others.

However, this Sunday after our usual church discussion, he said he and his wife are going to stop going to church bcz we don't  ??? Well, he doesn't want to see my point of view just argue against it.  That really hurts.   My daughter goes to church and after our initial discussion she does not talk about it AT ALL. That also hurts in a different way.  I said all that to say....

Family emotions are tough to deal with.  I am glad you are strong and are being used at your church. I stayed on for awhile too after learning about BT but eventually left.

Thanks for sharing and welcome to the forum.

God Bless,
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: rrammfcitktturjsp on January 11, 2007, 12:38:42 AM

  It is good that you can use us as a sounding board.  I am proud of you of how you stood up for your beliefs.  I will be in prayer for you as well as the church.

  This was a great first post.  Look forward to getting to know you.  Welcome to the forum.


  Anne C. McGuire
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: DWIGHT on January 11, 2007, 01:35:17 AM

Brother, that was wonderful.  Thank God He gave you the grace to be silent and yet the boldness to speak.  I know that wasn't easy, and I'm sure its still going through your mind.  We love you and welcome you with open arms, and we pray that you will continue to share with us your journey to His Kingdom.

God be with you,

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: Sorin on January 11, 2007, 02:37:45 AM

That took alot of guts to stand up for your beliefs like you did, but more often than not they will try to rip your head off when you tell them that God won't torture any 'guilty sinner' for all eternity. Even the pastor well then say: "Well if there's no 'hell' and everyone will be saved then why should we follow Christ, why should we not be like the world then, and just live it up?"

They will not believe the real reason people come to Christ, because that would mean it wasn't a 'free-will' decision "you mean God drags us to Christ? Why that's popostrous, I chose to come to Christ all on my own using my free will and my carnal mind [ which is enmity against God, hates God, yet chose Christ all on it's own?] and nothing caused me or inspired me to do it". They may not say it quite like that, but that's exactly what they mean, since they believe a person with a carnal mind that hates
God not only can, but has to come to Christ all on it's own, or make that decision all on it's own despite the fact that Jesus said that no man can come to Him except The Father which is in heaven Drags him.

So my point is, since they refuse to believe the scriptures, what good is it to cast thy pearls before them? ;)

Take care,

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: sansmile on January 11, 2007, 05:53:38 AM

God was truly with you. You said enough, i believe, and maybe the message was for Joe, not the others. We all know exactly what you are going through. I find it so hard not to get frustrated with people who refuse to even look at the meaning of words in scriptures, but I need to understand, it is all part of Gods plan. I believe this fully but my carnal self still gets mad. My mother has recently "been saved", and yes i am delighted as she is now starting her walk with Christ, but now i get it in the neck for not attending church, and comments like "who are you to think you know better than a pastor". So, i just have to be quiet for now, and guide her to scriptures and pray for the Lord to open her eyes. Do not be heartbroken Eric just praise God for revealing His truths to you and let Him use you as a vessel.

God Bless You and give you peace

Sandie      ((((((((((eric))))))))
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: Robin on January 11, 2007, 03:14:36 PM
Welcome Eric.

When I shared my beliefs with my pastor he told me my belief in God would only lead me to despair. Before finding this site I often thought he may have been correct. I couldn't find anyone who believed the same as I did and it often made me question whether I was correct in my understanding. My heart was also broken. I was rejected by all in the church. Then God told me to come out of her. It took me a year to listen to God. I wasn't sure it was really him speaking to me. He made it clear though. He also promised he would gather us together and 15 years later I found all of you. All in his time.

You have family here.

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: graceman on January 12, 2007, 12:37:34 PM
God bless you, Eric, and welcome to the forum.  Its OK to go with your gut in what God is leading you to do, specifically.  For some it is to stay in the church (I would say a minority) and some need the courage of God to leave.  Each in God's timing.
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: SandyFla on January 12, 2007, 12:57:31 PM
Good job, Eric!

I, too, still attend church and have brought up contradictions such as free will during Sunday School. It causes others to think. Don't be surprised if some of those people in the congregation start looking into what you said.

Another man with whom Ray used to teach (I forget his name at the moment) believed that every time you see the word "world" in the Bible, it is referring to the church. If that is so, then when Jesus prayed, "I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world" (John 17:15), He was asking that we not be taken out of the church. (This could be one of the reasons he and Ray split ... I don't know.) Anyway, I believe God has us each where He wants us, and where we can do the most good.

You planted the seed, who knows who will water it, but GOD will give the increase (I Cor. 3:16)! :)

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: PKnowler on January 13, 2007, 10:43:25 PM
Hi Eric,

    Welcome! I'm glad you decided to join us. Thanks for sharing! That's cool that God gave opportunity for you to break the ice and share your faith- and with I Timothy 2:3-4, that's awesome! My heart would have been pounding in my chest and I don't think I would have been able to be silent with that scripture either. Even though the majority wasn't receptive- Joe listened, and you were able to share truth with him and his eyes were open to see it! That's great! You never know what seed may grow. God may have more truth for you to share before you leave the church. It's exciting that we are His ambassadors to share the GOOD NEWS!

Blessings, Paula  :)
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: ericsteven on January 14, 2007, 09:39:42 PM
Thanks to everyone for your encouragement.  I'm glad you guys are out there.

Just an update:  I've actually started a dialogue with the preaching minister at the congregation about the things I'm learning here at bibletruths.  His name is Brady.  We've already had one meeting, and he said it was the best part of his week; he said ,"Being able to sit down with someone and really delve into and talk about the Scriptures instead of attend to endless beaurocratic church business and meetings is the real reason I got into ministry."  We didn't really get into many specifics, but I gave him kind of an overview of some of the things that I'm learning, and while he doesn't agree with it all, he did say he is very interested in continuing our discussions.  So, we'll see.

If ya'll would, pray for our time together, that both of our hearts may be open before the Lord.

God bless,

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: YellowStone on January 14, 2007, 11:39:15 PM

You have been given a wonderful opportunity and it appears the wisdom to handle it. :)

You will definitely be in my prayers that you continue to grow in truth and that the eyes and ears of your minister will be opened and receptive to it. This of course includes Joe,

Welcome to the family brother,

Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: rrammfcitktturjsp on January 15, 2007, 12:07:32 AM

  I will be praying for you.  What an awesome opportunity.  Keep us updated.


  Anne C. McGuire
Title: Re: My heart is broken
Post by: Martymonster on January 15, 2007, 12:29:10 AM
Hi there ericsteven!

I loved reading your post!

Do not think about what you will say to those who don't believe that God is the saviour of all,
like Paul says, just be ready give an answer for the hope that is in your heart, and God will put the words in your mouth that you are say!

Believe Me, God will be able to come up something far better than you ever could,
His word is sharper than any two edged sword and He will defeat his enemies!

Peace and Love brother!