'Reverend' doesn't care for biblical concepts - 11/30/2003

Hi

I have battled for years to accept faith of any kind, due to the following things:
1. Christians say God punishes
2. Rapture
3. 90% of Christians condemn (the greatest sin of all)


until I found the following:

1. a good father will never hurt his children (even one in this world), in fact, a good father will try to give his children everything he can! How much more will God to us His sons. We live under a cursed world and punishment is due to all, believers and unbelievers alike, due to the fall of Adam. In the curse their is "good and bad" (tree of good and evil) God stands at the door and knocks, if we don't open, we don't get!!! If we believe in His protection, He protects (Exodus 14v27-30 - Israel at the red sea, Daniel 6v22 - Daniel in the Lions den, Dan 3v23-25 - Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego) Christians go on and on about the fact that God will do it if He thinks so? that’s a trait of man! These men trusted and believed God and they received. So what’s different today? Well I believe it is the fact that we cannot trust Him to do it anymore, every time you ask a Christian about this, its "but you must remember", or you must know look at it this way" or some other excuse. Nowhere did any Prophet or believer in the Bible say "BUT"!!! HAS JESUS COME TO REDUCE GOD'S POWER???? The way Christians have it, it really seams so!!!

2. Rapture - where do we get that from, what about the righteous shall inherit the earth"(Ps25v13, Ps37v11, Ps37v22, Matthew5v5)???

3. Luke6v37 - "Judge and you shall not be judges, condemn and you shall not be condemned" - Not once have I gone to a Church where I was not judged or condemned either from the pulpit or by its members. We have become so accustomed to the fact that we must show the way that we do it through judgment. "You sinners, look what you are doing!!" many ministers say "but we must show you the errors of your ways, well 10 drunks in a pub can tell me where I do wrong. It is a Christians and Ministers job to "GIVE CHRIST AND HIM ALONE" (1Pet4v11, Acts8v5, Romans8v10, 1 Cor2v2, 1Cor1v23, Romans13v14) How can we put on Christ when our ministers and other Christians only give condemnation??? - He alone may judge!!! The Christ we give will drive out what is not of Christ in us, thereby removing those things we puffed up Christians so like to point out in our self-righteousness!! (there every evil thing dwells!)(James3v16)

I would have liked to continue, and believe me I can, but I have to go give Christ and Him alone, to those who seeks His blessing and grace.

Since I have found a God that cares, my life has changed, no more weakness - this earth is my and my fellow Christians' inheritance.

May the God of abundant life bless you in all your ways.

Daniel *****, Reverend





CONTENDER MINISTRIES RESPONSE:


Hi Daniel. I hope you studied the Word of God in its entirety. It seems like you selectively picked verses to fit your preconceived notions and desires.

First, God DOES punish sin. Sin has always required a death sacrifice. That's why temple sacrifices were instituted in the Old Testament. God judges and condemns sin. When Jesus became our sacrifice, we are now only required to submit to and accept His sacrifice for us. Otherwise, we continue on a path to condemnation. We all have free will, so anyone that chooses to reject the gift of salvation basically condemns himself. Here are a few verses that tell us that God DOES judge and punish sin:

- "See, the Lord is coming with thousands upon thousands of his holy ones to judge everyone, and to convict all the ungodly of all the ungodly acts they have done in the ungodly way, and of all the harsh words ungodly sinners have spoken against him. " Jude 1:14b-15

- “But if our unrighteousness brings out God's righteousness more clearly, what shall we say? That God is unjust in bringing his wrath on us? (I am using a human argument.) Certainly not! If that were so, how could God judge the world? ” Roman 3:5-6 (See also 2 Timothy 4:1, Hebrews 12:23, Romans 6:23)

The rapture is also a biblical idea, and it is the BLESSED HOPE of Christians! I am so excited when I think that Jesus may rapture us in this lifetime, and I may meet with Him in heaven before I face my earthly death. The word "rapture" comes from a word meaning to "snatch up". Basically, this will mean Jesus will take all born again Christians to Heaven - both those who are alive, and those who have died. The rapture IS scriptural:

- "In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am. " - John 14:2-3

- "We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will come down from heaven, with a loud command, with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet call of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. After that, we who are still alive and are left will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And so we will be with the Lord forever. " - 1 Thessalonians 4:14-17

- "Listen, I tell you a mystery: We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed--in a flash, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, the dead will be raised imperishable, and we will be changed. For the perishable must clothe itself with the imperishable, and the mortal with immortality. " 1 Corinthians 15:51-53

To judge one's soul is the role of Jesus Christ alone. As Christians, we are not to act as judge of people's souls. Yet we ARE to discern right from wrong, truth from error, righteousness from sin. Jesus taught this and Paul's epistles are geared heavily towards this teaching. We are warned of false christs and false teachings, and taught to reject them (Matthew 7:15, 24:11, 24; 2 Corinthians 11:13; Galatians 1:6-9; 2 Peter 2:1; 1 Timothy 6:3,4; 1 John 4:1; Jude 1:3-4). A minister is not only called to preach Christ, but also to encourage and rebuke (1 Timothy 5:20, 2 Timothy 3:16, 2 Timothy 4:2, Titus 1:13, Titus 2:15)

I hope and pray that you understand the truth of the gospel and the truth of the Word of God. I pray that you do not disregard biblical teachings simply because they make you feel uncomfortable. May God bless you and give you wisdom.

In Christ,

Ben and Jennifer Rast
Contender Ministries