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Paige Elizabeth

My head is exploding with questions...

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So last weekend I went to this Winter Joy Fest teen church revival thing. It was pretty cool. I'm in the Assembly of God church, so we're pretty laid back and stuff.

Anyway, I have those annoying sentences that require an answer from someone else. ;_; Here we go:

How do we know God is speaking to us and it’s not just an overactive imagination?

And another one

In Mark 10:18, Jesus asks why they’re calling him good, because only God is good. If he’s God, doesn’t that make him good too? So then why would he say that?

How did Noah fit the millions and millions of species of animals on this planet into his ark?

If Christianity is the only true religion, then why do practitioners of all other religions feel fulfilled in their faith and achieve the same desired results as Christians?

In the beginning God created Adam and Eve, and they had Cain and Able. How did they keep producing kids if there were 2 boys that were born?

So many questions. :crying:

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How do we know God is speaking to us and it’s not just an overactive imagination?
Amos Niven Wilder said that if the religious experience is positive, then that is a good thing. If the religious experience is negative, then that is a bad thing.
In Mark 10:18, Jesus asks why they’re calling him good, because only God is good. If he’s God, doesn’t that make him good too? So then why would he say that?
I usually read it as an act of humility, but somebody more learned than me might be able to answer this question more satisfactorily.
How did Noah fit the millions and millions of species of animals on this planet into his ark?
The story is not a literal history. All the species of animals were not in one tiny boat, and there was never a canopy of water over the Earth.
If Christianity is the only true religion, then why do practitioners of all other religions feel fulfilled in their faith and achieve the same desired results as Christians?
Christianity is not the only true religion. As a Catholic, I believe that Christianity and Catholicism reveal God the most of all religions, but we do believe that other religious faiths (Islam, Judaism, Hinduism, Buddhist) are full of God's Grace.
In the beginning God created Adam and Eve, and they had Cain and Able. How did they keep producing kids if there were 2 boys that were born?:
The simple answer is that there were no literal-historical Adam and Eve.

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Amos Niven Wilder said that if the religious experience is positive, then that is a good thing. If the religious experience is negative, then that is a bad thing.

I think you're jumping the gun by saying something like that. It is possible that God may be putting us through a challenging time which may not seem very positive to us for a reason. In the end, it may still be glorifying to Him and be positive. A bit of tough love is good for us sometimes, you know what I mean?

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I think you're jumping the gun by saying something like that. It is possible that God may be putting us through a challenging time which may not seem very positive to us for a reason. In the end, it may still be glorifying to Him and be positive. A bit of tough love is good for us sometimes, you know what I mean?
It depends on what we mean by "God speaking to us". I was under the impression she was thinking of hallucinatory/visionary experiences. If we take it to mean something more broadly, then I am quite certain God speaks to me every single day.

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It depends on what we mean by "God speaking to us". I was under the impression she was thinking of hallucinatory/visionary experiences. If we take it to mean something more broadly, then I am quite certain God speaks to me every single day.

Here is a scenario:

We are having a heavy worship at church and all the kids are up at the alter praying and crying. I'm sitting on the back row praying to God to give me a sign or tell me I'm doing the right thing by making a decision. The next day someone walks up to me and reads me the bible verse James 4:17 "So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin."

Is that God talking to me?

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So, you got John's radical postmodern answers, which were all intelligent, but now for the conservative Protestant perspective.

How do we know God is speaking to us and it’s not just an overactive imagination?

If it's in line with Scripture and good conscience, then you can safely assume it is probably God. After all, demonic influence and the flesh won't tell you anything Biblical.

In Mark 10:18, Jesus asks why they’re calling him good, because only God is good. If he’s God, doesn’t that make him good too? So then why would he say that?

I'm no scholar on this, but it has always seemed to me to be counter-intuitively a subtle assertion of deity. He knows the soldier does not believe He is God, so He asks why call Him good? Only if He really is God can He be called good, though He self-evidently is good.

How did Noah fit the millions and millions of species of animals on this planet into his ark?

He didn't. From an old earth creationist perspective, Noah only had to gather animals from Mesopotamia, which limits the number of specimens. In addition, due to microevolutionary speciation he would not have needed all of each individual species, but representatives of each genera, which would have been fewer in number during that time, if only slightly. But you shouldn't focus too much on that. There are so many theories on Noah, from the most literal to the most allegorical, that it is really of little consequence.

If Christianity is the only true religion, then why do practitioners of all other religions feel fulfilled in their faith and achieve the same desired results as Christians?

Because Satan is great deceiver. And they don't acheive "the same desired results." The ultimate desire of Christianity is God Himself, and those who follow other religions do not know Him or fellowship with Him. They at best know a cheap imitation that is enough to satisfy their conscience and hunger for the supernatural.

In the beginning God created Adam and Eve, and they had Cain and Able. How did they keep producing kids if there were 2 boys that were born?

Simple: they also had girls. While they were not named in the Biblical account, Jewish tradition strongly affirms the existence of sisters. In the beginning, incest would not have been a problem among a highly pure DNA line and before the prohibition in Mosaic Law.

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How do we know God is speaking to us and it’s not just an overactive imagination?

What is God saying?

In Mark 10:18, Jesus asks why they’re calling him good, because only God is good. If he’s God, doesn’t that make him good too? So then why would he say that?

Jesus asked why He is being called "good" when Jesus is clearly good, as demonstrated throughout Mark. He is proclaimed to be the Son of God throughout Mark as well. The best answer I can give is that He is asking the man why that man specifically calls Him good if the man doesn't believe Jesus is the Son of God. If Jesus is not the Son of God, then the man would have no reason to call Jesus "good." Because Jesus is the Son of God and the man doesn't believe so, he asks why the soldier specifically called Jesus, "good."

I hope I didn't confuse you, anyways take a look at a few more passages from Mark.

1:11 And a voice came from heaven: "You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased."

3:11Whenever the evil spirits saw him, they fell down before him and cried out, "You are the Son of God."

9:7Then a cloud appeared and enveloped them, and a voice came from the cloud: "This is my Son, whom I love. Listen to him!"

1:23-27 "Just then a man in their synagogue who was possessed by an evil spirit cried out, ‘What do you want with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are - the Holy One of God!’ ‘Be quiet!’ said Jesus sternly. ‘Come out of him!’ The evil spirit shook the man violently and came out of him with a shriek. The people were all so amazed that they asked each other, What is this? A new teaching - and with authority! He even gives orders to evil spirits and they obey him."

Another pretty stellar verse is Jesus claiming He is Lord of the Sabbath. Mark 2:28 So the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath.

I could keep going if you ask me to, but I hope that's sufficient enough evidence from Mark.

How did Noah fit the millions and millions of species of animals on this planet into his ark?

From a literal perspective they were all babies and God helped gather them.

If Christianity is the only true religion, then why do practitioners of all other religions feel fulfilled in their faith and achieve the same desired results as Christians?

Certainly Islam is nothing like Christianity, and the goals in Christianity are nothing like that of Islam. Do you have any Religion in mind that you're talking about?

In the beginning God created Adam and Eve, and they had Cain and Able. How did they keep producing kids if there were 2 boys that were born?

I still have trouble believing that when God said, "Be fruitful and multiply" to all of humanity that only Adam and Eve existed, I'm sure there were others.

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Here is a scenario:

We are having a heavy worship at church and all the kids are up at the alter praying and crying. I'm sitting on the back row praying to God to give me a sign or tell me I'm doing the right thing by making a decision. The next day someone walks up to me and reads me the bible verse James 4:17 "So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin."

Is that God talking to me?

That could be it. I mean, if you feel very compelled and a particular tug at your heart then God is probably trying to get something across.

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That could be it. I mean, if you feel very compelled and a particular tug at your heart then God is probably trying to get something across.

It was really interesting because lately when I'm praying or worshiping I haven't been able to get a spark or any connection with God then Saturday night we were all praying and I bursted out crying because I really wanna be a pastor in the youth part of the church but I can't do that if I can't even get in contact with God. I'm not even sure what to do.

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Hey, about the Adam and Eve question. How they had kids was because they had some more kids the just Cain and Able. It's just that they don't really talk about them. But if you read Genesis, I think shortly after Abel was murdered, it talks about them having more kids. So the boys probably would have married their sisters.

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It was really interesting because lately when I'm praying or worshiping I haven't been able to get a spark or any connection with God then Saturday night we were all praying and I bursted out crying because I really wanna be a pastor in the youth part of the church but I can't do that if I can't even get in contact with God. I'm not even sure what to do.

Pray to God. You need to show Him your desire, but let Him work through you. I know how you feel, because I would want Jesus so bad, i would not be sure if it was me or God doing the work. Let your heart and mind be open, and if you feel no instant tug, don't be guilty. This may be a test of your faith. Jesus has a plan for you. :)

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So, you got John's radical postmodern answers, which were all intelligent, but now for the conservative Protestant perspective.
None of them were intelligent, I do not think. They were rather paltry, short and uninspiring.
Because Satan is great deceiver. And they don't acheive "the same desired results." The ultimate desire of Christianity is God Himself, and those who follow other religions do not know Him or fellowship with Him. They at best know a cheap imitation that is enough to satisfy their conscience and hunger for the supernatural.
I want to note that my position is not merely postmodernism. It is a standard Catholic theological teaching. I wish to quote what a theological doctoral student told me once:

"Salvation as that term is usually used in American religious discourse is ultimately alien to Catholicism. We're interesting in sanctification or theosis - the process of cooperation with divine grace whereby we overcome the defects of our nature that are the result of sin and become holy and participants in the life of God. When it viewed in that light, I think it's easier to see that progress toward sanctification is possible outside the institutional Church as long as one is nevertheless cooperating with the work of God in their lives.... I also want to address the idea that the Holy Spirit provides no grace to those who are not baptized. The unbaptized fall in love, they know beauty, they create - all good things come from God, and to call that anything other than a form of Grace is incoherent."

The root of the difference is not one of Postmodern or Conservative. Rather, it is a different understanding of God and the process of salvation. It is a Protestant/Catholic divide, I think. We understand those who love and practice kindness as undergoing the process of sanctification through the Grace of God. Salvation is intrinsic regeneration, not being extrinsically justified according to some legalistic standard. We truly believe in the Parable of the Good Samaritan.

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Thank you for all the answers. I was working on a sermon I'm going to preach soon and a question popped into my head.

As many of you know there are still Indian tribes in much of Asia and India. Hardly any of them know about God if I'm correct. Will they go to Heaven if no one witnessed to them, or will they go to hell?

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As many of you know there are still Indian tribes in much of Asia and India. Hardly any of them know about God if I'm correct. Will they go to Heaven if no one witnessed to them, or will they go to hell?

Traditional Protestant theology says yes. Are they held accountable for not believing a message they have not heard? Of course not! They are, though, held accountable for their own sins and refusing to repent. Paul himself said that all men are without excuse (Romans 1). If one could get to Heaven if no one witnessed to him, wouldn't evangelism be a bad thing? Wouldn't it mean people who were safe suddenly have a chance to go to Hell?

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It was really interesting because lately when I'm praying or worshiping I haven't been able to get a spark or any connection with God then Saturday night we were all praying and I bursted out crying because I really wanna be a pastor in the youth part of the church but I can't do that if I can't even get in contact with God. I'm not even sure what to do.

Hm. You are setting up your own expectations here when you say that you really want to be a youth pastor. It is a righteous expectation, but we must remember that when we set up our own plan, it's possible that it's not in line with God's plan. So, it doesn't really surprise me that you feel a lack of connection or spark when your expectations aren't being met. Perhaps God wants you to trust him completely and surrender all expectations. Keep in mind that I have very limited knowledge of your story so I can't really say anything with great confidence.

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As many of you know there are still Indian tribes in much of Asia and India. Hardly any of them know about God if I'm correct. Will they go to Heaven if no one witnessed to them, or will they go to hell?
Moderate Catholic theology would argue that so long as they have committed no mortal sins, or have repented for the one's they previously committed in their heart, there should be no obstacle to their getting into Heaven.

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As many of you know there are still Indian tribes in much of Asia and India. Hardly any of them know about God if I'm correct. Will they go to Heaven if no one witnessed to them, or will they go to hell?

I was working at a customer's house not too long after I received Christ. After working one day I was wrapping up and we got into a discussion about God and it was really cool. I think we had been talking for over an hour but when the conversation turned salvation and Christ the conversation went downhill bigtime! The question the husband threw at me was alot like your question; what about those in remote areas of the earth who have never heard the gospel, your saying they are condemned to hell simply because they never read a bible or heard about Jesus. I honestly did not know what to say, I knew within my heart that God has provided away to Him but I really at the time the only answer I had for him was in Acts 17:26-27:From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us.

I knew He gave all the opportunity to find Him but that was not enough for my customer and honestly I wanted to know more also. I came to the book of John in chapter 9 Jesus heals a man that was blind from birth. Now Jesus does this on the Sabbath so of course now the Pharisees get involved. So now they want to question him is parents ect to try and disprove the miracle. So the ex-blind dude makes the Pharisees look stupid so the kick him out and Jesus finds him. So Jesus asks; "Do you believe in the Son of Man?" (vs35) the response goes like this;

9:36 "Who is he, sir?" the man asked. "Tell me so that I may believe in him."

9:37 Jesus said, "You have now seen him; in fact, he is the one speaking with you."

9:38 Then the man said, "Lord, I believe," and he worshiped him.

9:39 Jesus said, "For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind."

9:40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, "What? Are we blind too?"

9:41 Jesus said, "If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains.

If you were blind you would not be guilty of sin. God's word is pretty cool in giving us the answers but my answer did not stop there because I was like God then how would someone like that know about You? So here is what He gave me;

Rom 1:20-21 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.

God has made Himself known to everyone in away each person can comprehend. Now whether they move in that or reject that, thats a different story but no one will ever stand before Him and say I did not know because they would have known what they themselves needed to know.

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Genesis 5:3-4

When Adam had lived 130 years, he fathered a son in his own likeness, after his image, and named him Seth. The days of Adam after he fathered Seth were 800 years; and he had other sons and daughters.

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It was really interesting because lately when I'm praying or worshiping I haven't been able to get a spark or any connection with God then Saturday night we were all praying and I bursted out crying because I really wanna be a pastor in the youth part of the church but I can't do that if I can't even get in contact with God. I'm not even sure what to do.

I had the same attitude durring the same time my youth pastor was preaching: "Worship isn't about what God can do for you it is about thinking him and just basking in his glory."

I still struggle with this. Just keep your eyes on him. It's all about him.

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