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I’m Christian, unless you’re gay.

Today I want to write about something that has bothered me for the better part of a decade. I’ve carved out no fewer than a dozen drafts of this post, all strangely unalike, all ultimately failing to accomplish the job I’ve set out to do. Truth is, I’ve been trying to write it off and on for more than a year now, and the right words have been seemingly impossible to come by.

In the end, and in order to post it, I guess I had to care more about the message than I do about potential backlash. I’m not being facetious when I say that I hope I can get this message across without offending… well… everybody.

What I really hope is that this post will spark and encourage poignant and worthwhile discussion that will lead to some poignant and worthwhile changes in the lives of at least a few people who are hurting.

That being said, I believe some strong words need to be said today.

“God hates fags.” We’ve all seen the signs being waved high in the air by members of the Westboro Baptist church. On TV. In real life. It’s hard not to take notice.

Over the years, I’ve watched seemingly never-ending disgustingness and hatred spill across the media airwaves from those who belong to the organization. For those who don’t know much about that “church,” they have made a seedy name for themselves by doing drastic things like picketing beneath atrocious signs and hosting flagrant anti-gay protests at military funerals.

Almost every person of nearly every religion has no problem loathing and condemning the Westboro Baptist Church and its members, and perhaps with reason. They take freedom of speech far beyond what our founding fathers intended when they fought to give us that right, and they laugh at the rest of the world while they do.

But today I don’t want to talk about those idiots. I want to talk about you. And me.

And my friend who I’ll call Jacob.

Jacob is 27  years old, and guess what… he’s gay.

Not a lot of people know. He lives in a community where being gay is still very “frowned upon.”

I was talking to him on the phone a few weeks ago, telling him about my failed attempts to write this post. He was trying to hold his emotions in, but he eventually became tearful as we deliberated the very problem that this post attempts to discuss.

Before I go on, I feel I must say something one time. Today’s post is not about homosexuality. It’s not about Christians. It’s not about religion. It’s not about politics. It’s about something else altogether. Something greater. Something simpler.

It’s about love.

It’s about kindness.

It’s about friendship

And love, kindness, and friendship are three things that Jacob hasn’t felt in a long time.

I’m thankful he gave me permission to share our conversation with you. It went something like this.

“Jacob, I honestly don’t know how to write it,” I said. “I know what I want to get across, but I can never find the right words.”

“Dan, you need to write it. Don’t give up. I’m telling you, it needs to be said.”

I paused. “You don’t understand. It’s too heated a subject. It’s something people are very emotional and touchy about. I’d be lynched.”

My friend hesitated. “Dan, you are the only friend I have that knows I’m gay. The only freaking one,” he said.

“What do you mean? I know you’ve told other friends.”

That’s when his voice cracked. He began crying.

“Every single person I’ve told has ditched me. They just disappear. They stop calling. They remove me on Facebook. They’re just gone,” he said. “They can’t handle knowing and being friends with a gay person.”

I didn’t know what to say. So I didn’t say anything.

“You don’t know what it’s like, man. You don’t know what it’s like to live here and be gay. You don’t know what it’s like to have freaking nobody. You don’t know what it’s like to have your own parents hate you and try and cover up your existence. I didn’t choose this. I didn’t want this. And I’m so tired of people hating me for it. I can’t take it anymore. I just can’t.”

How do you respond to that?

I wanted to tell him it was all in his head. I knew it wasn’t. I wanted to tell him it would get better and easier. The words would have been hollow and without conviction, and I knew it.

You see, I live in this community too. And I’ve heard the hate. I’ve heard the disgust. I’ve heard the disdain. I’ve heard the gossip. I’ve heard the distrust. I’ve heard the anger. I’ve heard it all, and I’ve heard it tucked and disguised neatly beneath a wrapper of self-righteousness and a blanket of “caring” or “religious” words. I’ve heard it more times than I care to number.

About gay people.

About people who dress differently.

About people who act differently.

About fat people.

About people with drug addictions.

About people who smoke.

About people with addictions to alcohol.

About people with eating disorders.

About people who fall away from their faiths.

About people who aren’t members of the dominant local religion.

About people who have non-traditional piercings.

About people who just look at you or me the wrong way.

I’ve heard it, and I’ve heard it over, and over, and over again.

Hell, in the past (and to some degree in the present) I participated in it. I propagated it. I smugly took part in it. I’ll admit that.

And I did so under the blanketing term “Christian.” I did so believing that my actions were somehow justified because of my beliefs at the time. I did so, actually believing that such appointments were done out of… love.

CONTINUED ON PAGE 2

23897 comments
SwissJon
SwissJon

You know, it's people like you two who make it worth the effort :)

HarryJohnson3
HarryJohnson3

I have been greatly encouraged by the testimonies from those that Dr Love Spell caster Solution have helped to get their ex back between 48hrs .


I have the same problem Two months ago,I fell in love with a Lady at work and we were in deep love for one year and half but the moment she discovered that i lied to her about my real age she decided to break up with me and After couple of weeks we break up she got New job with another company in a different City about 105 km away from me ,We communicate with each other once in a while but all what she want from me is just a friend .

I really need her back in my life because i love her so much and i never feel this way before , cant stand the pain i go through everyday by day thinking about her because i miss her so much,then a friend of mine David refer me to contact DR Love Spell Caster for solution ([email protected])  

i contact Dr Love for help ,he assure me she will come back to me between 48 hrs after performing spell on her,at first i don't believe it will work because i don't know someone like Dr Love spell caster solution exist in the world to help people get there love back until the next day i saw my ex girlfriend kate knocking my door early in the Morning . she told me she was very sorry that she don't meant to hurt my feeling about her ,Now we are planing to get married soon .thanks so much DR Love.

MercyBrown3
MercyBrown3

I’m Mercy brown by name I have a few testimony to share with you all about myself, I was in a relationship with this guy and for 3years and we were about getting married when we both have misunderstanding with each other and he ask me for a divorce and we both agreed and after 4months I head that he was having an affair with one of my closest friend and I was very upset and worried so a friend of my advice me and told me if I still love my ex and if I really want to have him back so I told her yes, and she ask me to contact Dr. Madurai the spell caster and I did although I never believe on spell so he gave me something when he was casting the spell and ask me to say my wishes on it and after the casting of the spell a receive a phone call from my ex and was ask me at which I did and now we are back together again I’m so happy and I wish not to ever have this mistake again in my life. I will also advice anyone with this kind of issue to contact him for help he is really nice on phone and always there to answer you question giving you the good advice that you need. his email is [email protected]

Debbie Fisher
Debbie Fisher

Dan, I just read this again today. I love it just as much as the first time. I sure hope more and more people not only share it but adopt the principals you write about. Love is my religion! 

Keep the blogs coming! Your work is brilliant.

NatashaMichael
NatashaMichael

I m Natashai lives in Texas and i was in a serious relationship with my Ex Guy for 3 good years.. One day we were in a dinner party, we had a little misunderstanding which lead to a Quarrel and he stood up and left me at the dinner party. i try to call him but he was not picking my calls so after than i contacted my brother and told him about it,my brother so much love me that he had to see him on my behalf,he told my brother that it is over between us.. Then i contacted a friend of mine that had this similar experience and she directed me to THE HIGH PRIEST OZIGIDIDON and i contacted him on [email protected], at first i thought it was not going to be possible and i contacted him i was ask to come up with a little requirement information of me and my Ex Guy,so i did what i was ask to do, after 24Hours after the spell was cast i was in my office when my Ex Guy called me and was asking me to forgive him and come back to him. i was very surprise it was like a dream to me,so ever since we have been happily married with one kid my lovely baby(Anita)...i wish you the best of luck... friends you can contact HIGH PRIEST OZIGIDIDON on his email, [email protected]  I know you will Thank me later

evesaldivar
evesaldivar

That was beautiful! It moved me to tears. It made me realize that even though I have tried to be this way there are still times I fall very short. With a nasty boss or rude customer. To be honest I don't honestly know if I will ever be able to love some people, people who have really hurt me, but I can work on it.


My mom is gay, and I must admit that I don't understand the attraction to women because I'm not gay. But I still love her, and support her and I love her partner as well. I can see how happy she makes my mom. 


People should be aware also that young gays are can be a very high suicide risk in situations like Jacobs, when family and friends reject you. They didn't choose to feel that way, ask yourself this, would you rather have a gay son or daughter or a dead son or daughter. Your rejection is not going to change what they are. I wish I could give Jacob a hug.



Ono
Ono

@DavidStevens @Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon 

I don't know if I deserve your faith, I falter a lot, get angry, sucked into arenas I shouldn't go into, but I keep learning, resetting myself, and try harder to be the change I wish to see in the world. It's hard to do though! So very hard.

 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@NatashaMichael 

I wish you all the best. Just be on your guard that somebody doesn't reverse the spell at the worst possible moment. Since it isn't clear on what basis this spell was done, there is no way to know the strength or the duration of the spell. Hopefully you have a long and blessed life.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@evesaldivar 

The question of whether one should reject a person for who they are is simple. NO.

But the real question is what happens with anyone who rejects the love of Jesus.

At that time, when Jesus is the teacher of how to love and what love is, then life is the best it will ever be. Accepting or rejecting Jesus and His sacrificial love and the resurrection is the key to living.

fajitaknocks
fajitaknocks

@Tim Conley 

Tim,
The article is about precisely the opposite of what you talk about. He asked you to remove religion from the picture. Remove judgements and biases. Making little comments like the one you have is completely unnecessary. You won't make a believer out of anyone by riding in on some high horse talking about Jesus and how you won't experience life until you accept his love. Whatever the hell that means.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@fajitaknocks @Tim Conley 

Right on. I would hope talk of a relationship with Jesus is not the equal of religion. Just the opposite actually. The only judgment is looking at the produce coming from the heart through actions. God's love is to any one who accepts it. My mode of travel is walking or bicycle in the metaphor of meeting peoples needs. Ergo, when I see a need, I use any means given to me and meet that need. But I get why the confusion of love when not enough people show the love that God created. I used to be as confused as you until I found the answer and now it all makes sense. My words or actions are not only harmless but they have helped many who have considered the meaning and the application, and now you don't have to judge me either. I am only here to help with life and how to process issues with the love of Jesus.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @fajitaknocks Hey Tim,

You have been on here, saying these same things for over a year already, in some real or faux name and/or capacity and you still refuse to LISTEN. 


God gave you two ears and one mouth for a reason...you are suppose to listen twice as much and hard as you talk...so be quiet and really listen for a change to what people have been  saying to you for over a year! 

The things you say( one mouth) are hurtful and are harming people!

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @fajitaknocks

Hi Tim, you have repeatedly insisted that your words are harmless, despite hearing from multiple LGBTQs and allies that in fact, your words do great harm. Allow me to share a story from my own life.


Some years ago, I was talking with a friend who is a man of color. I was speaking of a certain white artist's use of the n-word. I said something to the effect of, "He's using it as a term of respect, so it's okay." 


My patient, loving friend told me (in a respectful tone, in a voice tense with suppressed anger) that despite the artist's intent, his use of the word was still inappropriate, and that for any white person to think that they can be justified in using that word displays a profound ignorance of history.


Finally, I got it. I understood that it simply was not okay for me to use that word, no matter what my intention. I won't even say it if I'm rapping along with a song. It is off limits, period.


Tim, your declaration that same-sex love is against God's law is a harmful declaration. Now and forever. Stop it, man.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I do listen. I listen to all sorts of people. People in person, people on this forum, people in authority. The ONE person that I listen to most is Jesus and after Him then his disciples.


Actually, most everyone has the same accessories that you described and I have taken in all of what was said with humility and I appreciate all of your thoughts. However, when all has been said and done, it has to make sense with God's word and the common sense that I assume everyone has, (at least to begin with).


I don't recall saying anything that isn't in the Bible. But I say it in my own words as much as I can. I haven't made any of my beliefs up with my imagination or my feelings. Nobody has refuted what I have said. So it must be true. If anyone is hurt by the truth, I am sorry for that. The truth I speak of is not from spite or hate, it is on the basis of love for the soul. That love is the kind of love that lasts.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

Great story. I see what you are talking about. However, the problem is not that simple with God. God is the only provider of truth and love. I know it is hard to accept truth with love, I used to be there myself. That's why I don't mince words or say what someone wants to hear. The story about the 'n' word is worth something but not in this context. The 'n' word has such negatives attached and it isn't necessary to use it anyways. Apparently, some people equate truth that goes against their beliefs as hate. If so then that is really sad. However, the truth is going to set them free of any sadness IF the truth is comprehended and accepted for what it is.

The way out of the paths leading to depression and death is to look to the one who conquered death. That is the true meaning of love, an innocent man dying for the guilty.

Same sex 'love', or any 'love' that is of this world is not love at all. It is a person fulfilling their flesh in lust. It is hard to hear this, and it is not going to be silenced simply because I stop saying it. The man paying for pleasure is the same sin as same sex 'love'. Anyone in an affair is the same sin of lust. Jesus said "Anyone who looks at a woman for pleasure is guilty of lust". Playboy, Hustler and Planned Parenthood make billions from lust. Jesus also said "The way into a relationship with God is straight and narrow and few there be who find it. That is the truth and no one can make it into something someone wants to hear.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks  Hmmm... I've been looking on this thread for a while now, recently I've been reticent to say anything because I feel that with Tim, I'm flogging a dead horse, but allow me to interject.

It is written, in every version of the bible I know of, in every language "God is Love".. This isn't a euphemism, it's not code for something, it's stated as a clear and simple fact. "God is love, and if you do not know love, you do not know God."

Now the love of God here is all encompassing, it has to be, God sent his only son to die, knowing that it was the only way for you and I to understand the depths of Love that God has for us, it's all encompassing. God didn't send his only son to die for you as long as you aren't gay, he sent his only son to die for EVERYONE.

So.. There are no limits to Gods love.

Homosexuality is not something that people choose, otherwise you would also state that heterosexuality is a choice, and I really don't make any choices over whom I am attracted to, nor do you, so why would you say it's different for someone else, just because they're different to you.. Would you also state that someone who has blonde hair should dye their hair brown because the majority of people have brown hair?


To then state that God will punish you for BEING gay would be to state that God will punish you for being blonde. God made you blonde, and God made you straight or gay. To then go and punish you for being something that God made you would be unjust, and almost everywhere in the bible, it says God is a just God.. How can something that is love be anything other than just?

Quite simply, God doesn't care if you're straight or not, white or not, God made you that way, so God loves you that way.


Come on Tim, get your head out of the bucket and open your heart to what is real, God loves people for being true to themselves.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks Really Tim? Because you are not listening AT ALL to Christ. He specifically told you to , " Love God with your whole heart and soul, To love your neighbors as you love yourself and not to judge. He told you these were the two most important commandments.

We aren't getting the love part Tim. And please don't give me another dissertation about how none of us know what "real love" is, which BTW was another one of the many judgements you've thrown at people here.

Many of us here have refuted what you've said, you just haven't been listening......two ears Tim, two ears.


We have tried many, many, many times to no avail. You can think and believe anything you want Tim but when people ask you, repeatedly, to stop and you don't and we say you are hurting people, well that is the exact opposite of loving.


So I'll leave you with yet another oldie but goodie....

"If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all"


If you feel the constant need to get confirmation and ego boosting on your understanding/prowess/delivery of scripture or what a true follower/believer in Christ you are, you should probably go to a site where they have the same convoluted understanding and belief of Christ that you do. They are out there Tim, go find them

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks

This line of yours Tim, "That is the true meaning of love, an innocent man dying for the guilty."


I agree that is the true meaning of the unconditional love the Father has for ALL of his children, and yet you cannot even show a speck of that loving heart and spirit and stop saying harmful, hurtful things, when repeatedly asked.


It sounds very much that you are only seeing love in one aspect, sexually, because that is exactly what you say, " Same sex 'love', or any 'love' that is of this world is not love at all. It is a person fulfilling their flesh in lust." 


And I know I've mentioned this to you before, that you only seem to focus on the sexually aspect. Real love, as you like to term it, has nothing to do with sex, sex can and does become a part of some real loving relationships, but we all know they aren't based solely on sex. You see one thing, that any sexually misconduct, ( I use the term misconduct for how you see it) is sin, you miss completely the possible reasons for such " misconduct". The pain and suffering someone might be experiencing that is causing the misconduct. 

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks


Clearly, Tim, I have failed you. My communication skills are unable to penetrate the hardened shell of your world view.


I'm sorry, brother, I have tried. I have given it my best effort. I will continue to pray that somehow you will learn this lesson before you do more harm, clearly this one is out of my league.


Peace to you.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

You are correct in saying that God is love and God's love is all encompassing.

You believe God made certain people straight and other people homosexual. I don't believe that because it doesn't make sense. You do in fact make choices of who you are attracted to. The color of hair is rather a shallow choice and that might be the problem. God knows the inner most part of our being and that is what is most important. God's love is based on how we handle temptation. A relationship with God is dependent on being us seeking the truth. God sent His son because He wanted to reach out to us since we couldn't reach out to God without the Holy Spirit to guide us.

The part you are missing is about making so much of your lifestyle. The Bible also states that God's love leads one to righteousness. The meaning of that is that the flesh is the problem. If one is to connect with God then the Holy Spirit is the guide, not the flesh. By making the pleasure of the flesh important then the Holy Spirit is out of that life.

God doesn't punish anyone, unless not having a relationship with God in heaven is punishment. You make that choice.

You are also correct to say it doesn't matter what a persons sin is, if any part of this world, this life or possessions, then that sin might be more important than God's righteousness. If so then God's love is limited by choices made which lead to limited faith.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I have two ears and two eyes. The distinction between us is how we see the words of Jesus. Yes, Jesus did say those were the two most important commandments. Following that is the application of those commandments. You seem to have this thing about love is not recognized if it is different than what you are expecting. There is a standard and I use the Bible as my standard. If you want to discuss other verses that connect with the few that you already know, fine. If you only want to stay with what you have now, I get that but I can't stay there with you. My thing is to keep expanding my knowledge of God and to seek God until God's will and my will the same. That means the whole Bible has to be used, not only the parts that support your pretext. If your pretext is your version of refuting my words, I am sorry but that is not going to make it.


Also, your oldie saying is a good one to remember except when one is seeking the truth.


I have none, zero of the needs you mentioned. My only motive is God's love to be expressed in truth which came from Jesus's words or those of the apostles, which Jesus appointed. If you want to think of the straight and narrow that Jesus taught is hate or convoluted, I am sorry but that is not correct.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks  Of course Tim will disagree with EVERYTHING you say Kathleen. He's not here to understand how other people experience the love of God, he's here to force his point of view on others.

Here's the reality of this situation.. Tim won't change his mind about anything, not because he can't see what you're saying or anything like that, but because he's afraid to admit that he may have got it wrong.. So far, since I've been a part of this thread, I've not experienced one occasion when he's even slightly adjusted his point of view.. He's not willing to look at the broad spectrum of people in this world, with different experiences of God.. If you don't experience God in EXACTLY the way he thinks he has, then you are wrong..

I have to say, that sounds like the workings of a sect.. Or to put it in Tims words, the devil.


I've tried, I really have, so have many people in this forum, but when someone do desperately needs to put God into his box, there comes a point where you have to say.. You're lost to us.. I cannot force you to see the error in your ways if you're so afraid to let go of what you think you know.

My personal opinion on this is as follows.. IF what Tim believes to be true turned out to be so, I would be happy to have turned my back on that and found the God of Love and kindness instead. But I cannot believe it to be true, there are so many contradictions in Tims opinions that the convoluted path he thinks he's following is just lost between the words and the actions.

I will continue to do what I believe to be the right thing.. I will avoid judging people for their lifestyles, since that's not my place.. Including Tim.. He has a right to live his life the way he choses, just not the right to force people in the way he's trying to do.. There's seven billion people in the world. I'm doing my best to help the ones who need my help, as I'm sure you are, so, for now, I will turn my back on Tim and leave him to study his book. One day he may choose to look outside that book and find God in the real world.. When he does, I will welcome him with open arms.

Sorry Tim, I've nothing more I can say to you. 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks 

It is hard to see how the truth that Jesus taught and I refer to can be hurtful. To say words that make you into a inferior, fragile person that can't handle the truth would be hurtful. To say words that soothe the feelings but lead to destruction would be hurtful.


Apparently, it's only love if it connects with you with the words that you accept. If you don't see/hear the words of your choosing then it automatically is hate. You don't ever refute the words used without attacking the person who said them.


You are the one who is focused on the sexual aspect. I have included the concept of following Jesus and the disciples. They taught much more than sex. "The pain and suffering someone might be experiencing that is causing the misconduct." Nowhere is this concept found in the Bible. Pain and suffering is dealt with in the context of sin. Jesus is the one to heal the pain and suffering. The misconduct is not of any consequence when sin is removed by obeying Jesus's teachings and following Jesus on the straight and narrow pathway that He lived when he was here.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

My 'world view'??? Everybody has a world view but is that what was got from our discussion? It really is much more than a world view. For me it has to do with God's view.


Just curious.....you are praying to who? Under what auspices? It would appear to me that you only believe in Jesus Christ as one to reinforce your world view rather than look at ALL of Jesus's teachings for wisdom, guidance and prophecy.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks Here we go again...That's a very simplistic analysis of attraction Tim.. 

Attraction is not a conscious decision, I don't say "She's got blonde hair, therefore I'm attracted to her"..  I can't explain what made me choose my wife over the other 3.5 billion women in the world, I simply found her attractive. If she'd been a man, but all the other qualities about her were the same, I wouldn't be attracted, that defines me as heterosexual. A person who is homosexual would find the opposite to be true. Don't you see, that isn't something I've made a choice over, I've simply chosen not to be in a relationship with someone who I don't find attractive. I "could" be in a relationship with a man, but it wouldn't feel right, not because I don't like men, but because I don't find men attractive. The opposite is also true of a gay man.. He could be in a relationship with a woman, but he wouldn't find her attractive. Would that be fair? for either party?

A relationship with God is "dependant".... ARRGH! How can Gods love be all encompassing and limitless when it is "dependant" on something?? The two are mutually incompatible.

If "the flesh is the problem" then what does it matter what your sexuality is? Surely that's simply a function of the flesh?? You're referring to "original Sin" I guess? What's that got to do with who you're attracted to? Being gay is no more or less sinful than being straight..

It also means that ANYONE, no matter what their sexuality can have a relationship with God, and YOU, a mere mortal have no right to tell someone based on something like sexuality that you yourself have (And have admitted to denying, at least at some stage of your life, if that stage is not right now.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks Yes you have two ears and two eyes which you refuse to use, and one giant mouth which never closes long enough to hear anything anyone has said to you. I use the same few verses, not because I don't know more but because I hope against hope that maybe those verses will be straight forward enough to accommodate your simple understanding.

I never once said that Jesus' straight and narrow is hate or convoluted, I said yours was. You have the ability to take the loving words, actions and immense love of Christ for ALL his children and twist it into something mean, hurtful and damaging. So if, as you keep claiming, this is not your intent, but this is what we all are still getting from you, you have to admit something is amiss. The one common denominator here is you because no one here has said they feel that from Christ's words, only yours...the way in which you twist ( from your convoluted understanding of them) Christ's loving words.


So again I urge you to step outside of that box you have yourself bound in and look to others who have a much greater understanding of the scriptures, the world in which we all live, science ( these are not mutually exclusive) and the great love of Christ. Until then I agree with SwissJon that you are lost.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks So very true SwissJon, and I agree with you 100%. It's just my nature, (which is sometimes a hindrance) to not give up. I still have some learning to do of my own.  As when to say, " I've done all I can do" and be done. 


I have a hard time accepting that anyone can not see just plain old common sense, I feel that I must be lacking in some way, that if I just say this thing or that in another way then they will get it. Because in this case, it really is just common sense. If God SO loved the WORLD that he gave his son, ( and in the most horrific, torturous way) to save us all, that means US ALL, there were no exclusions. So I feel that I am just not saying it in a way that this concept is understood. 


But I do this with most everything, everyone, and for as long as I can remember as well. I'm still trying to decide if this is my gift or my curse, this never giving up, it's my delivery thing, today it feels like a curse, LOL.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I don't see or hear many, if any, changing either. The only reason I haven't changed is because I follow Jesus. It is not my point of view since I used to be where you are and I did change to meet up with Jesus and the apostles.

You can claim anything you wish to about my words but that is a compliment since my standard is the Bible, which are all from Jesus through the Holy Spirit. It is not about what I think or what I know unless Jesus makes the connection.

You say I have many contradictions. That is possible and if it is a fact that I have even one contradictions, I would be glad to correct it and make it right. I have not claimed to be perfect.

God is in the real world to the extent that people believe on Jesus Christ and people pray to, follow and obey.

I trust you will be straight up and honest enough to point out where I have had any contradictory words. 

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks Again you miss the boat on every level Tim. 

The "misconduct" that I refer to I only use that term for you. I don't see it as misconduct at all, I see it as the pain and suffering that someone may be experiencing that causes them to look in all the wrong places, so to speak. And what you call "sin" and say that the pain and suffering is removed by obeying Jesus' teachings and the "straight and narrow" path is the problem. First you have to know the person, their life experience and how they think, feel and believe about THEMSELVES. 


Do you not get that until you get to the root of the pain someone is experiencing that nothing will change for them? If they are feeling unworthy, unlovable, inadequate in some way they will not believe or feel that even Christ could love them, especially (maybe) Christ could love them. And I certainly don't claim that this is true for everyone but you seem to think it is like some magic pill. You can't change a person's view of themselves by just telling them....Just believe Christ loves you and follow all his teachings and you'll be fine, without changing their view (that they may have felt for their entire life) of themselves, and that only comes with listening, trying to understand, empathy, and helping them to start changing the way in which they see and feel about themselves. Only then can the acceptance and belief that Christ or anyone else can and does love them  will come.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks

And here Tim, once again, is your arrogance. Yes, you have a world view. It is informed by your experience of God through Christianity, but it is yours alone. Own it, dude. Anything else is dishonest.


I'm not a Christian, haven't been since my teens. I recognize Jesus as an enlightened master, but not the only one.


I pray to God, The Great Spirit, Buddha Nature, The Goddess, or whatever else human's have chosen to call that ineffable force which animates us all and makes life possible. I know that my understanding of this force is profoundly limited and is mine alone.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks 

I disagree that attraction is not a conscious decision. Of course there are many steps to arriving at any relational decision. I am rather offended by the idea that my relationship with anyone would be by chance or some other means where I wouldn't be able to either opt out or to ensure it happening. To be at the whim of nature would be on the same level as some animal. I can list each and every reason for choosing my wife. As for the fairness of a homosexual person in a heterosexual relationship, that has many mitigating factors.


Gods love is all encompassing and limitless but the dependency is from our limited comprehension. It's like the limits of any airborne craft. Some people are quite satisfied with a model airplane experience, with the handler being firmly standing on the ground. Some other people are less limited by riding in a balloon or a blimp. Still others want to be more in control by hangliding. The point is that, in reality we choose our own path and our own limitations, whether we know of our own life choices or not.


"Being gay is no more or less sinful than being straight.." This is true. However, being straight is not without sin either. There is many paths that lead to destruction. Only one path is with Jesus. That path is straight and narrow and few people find it. It takes much effort to seek the truth and rejecting many distractions and errors.


Sexuality is only one among many ways to sin and not have a relationship with God, who is righteous and holy. Jesus Christ was the only perfect man to live a life on this earth and aside from following Jesus, there is no hope. I am not saying this except by repeating what I have read in the Bible. I don't live by being sexual (even though I am in a loving relationship and do enjoy that), I live by knowing Jesus and living by His precepts, teachings and examples. In other words, being sexual is secondary to anything God wills for my life. It is not about what I can do, it is about obedience to God because I know how much God loves and cares for me. 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I won't argue with you nor will I trade insults. It's ok if you choose to use any verse you wish, that is not my call. My understanding of the Bible is like a tripod. One verse alone will be easy to understand, but three verses that say similar points in slightly different words are easier still to understand and difficult to knock down. If you wish, I could get as many verses to discuss as you would like.


Jesus's straight and narrow is also my straight and narrow, unless you can refute that, that statement is true.

The next sentence is your judgment to make. Does not make it true simply by your saying it. If words are hurtful, it could be the receiver of those words has a problem. I haven't seen anything but accusations that it is as you claim.

My words are NOT Christ's words, however, they do come from Jesus Christ's teachings or those of the apostles.

If my words are twisted and convoluted, I will take correction. It has to be real correction that has an actual foundation, rather than vague phrases or words to make someone feel good.


You can make your claims and I can make my claims. You claim I am in a box, and from your viewpoint it may look that way. From where I am and looking at where I came from, I WAS in a box. But now I am free because of what Jesus did for me.

You can agree with whom ever you want. Agree with everyone, if you want. Even if the whole world THINKS I am lost, that is not anything compared to God's wisdom, strength and plan. Besides, I am one among many that have a foundation for what we believe.

Ono
Ono

@kathleen z  and @SwissJon I believe what happens with those who are so rigid in their beliefs that they become fanatical, cold, and closed down, and what they say about others is a projection of what they loathe in themselves. When I read Tim's words, I can see how shut down he is and that makes me feel sad for him. All I can do is pray that something will give him a jolt, that makes him "feel the love of God"--get him out of his head and into his heart. We've watched him desperately waffle all over the place. He can't even define God's love, we've witnessed him change the meanings of scriptures when backed into a corner. 


I think what Tim needs is loving kindness, a lot of it. His self loathing needs to be broken into and he desperately needs to heal from his own hatred. I wish I could help him, but only he can decide to do the work and let God help him heal from his own hatred that he projects outwardly to others. I know that Tim will be reading this, but I am not saying this for his benefit, but for ours. Tim behaves like an unfeeling robot, because he is closed down. All I can do is pray that his heart will be opened one day, and I hope he does. People can change, and realize their own crap, and most of it comes from not loving themselves. God becomes the excuse to keep them there, instead of God being the vehicle to deliver them out of their self-made hell. I know this because I've been there myself, I know the despair. And have been surrounded by dysfunctional Christians that desperately need God's healing. 

I had to do a lot of work, God didn't hand the healing on a silver platter. I had to walk to places in my head and heart I didn't want to go, I had so much fear. Yet he was there guiding me gently, when I had to work through the pain and the anger and the issues of abuse that life gave me. I am still a work in progress, and would love to reach out to Tim, I don't know if I have the wisdom to help him. And until he makes a step out of what is binding him, no one can reach him, not even God. However, I think God will do the work necessary, give him the right teachers if he opens his heart. I can't say for sure, I don't know the mind of God, and I don't know what has happened to Tim to make him have so much pain that has shut him down emotionally. All I can do is hope and pray that he will be able to work his way out of it and find God's joy in this lifetime.


So anyone that has read posts such as Tim's should realize that if you're gay and they are putting you down for it, this is about the person's unhappiness, not about your sexuality. They will find anything to pin on another so as not to look at themselves. And usually what they loathe in themselves is what they complain about in another. And if we can find compassion for their pain, realizing it is a projection of what they are feeling, their words can no longer hurt anyone, and that is a place of healing for ourselves too. 

That I believe is one of the things Christ was teaching us. Why he called on us to love and not judge. Because judgement of another is just a projection of our own heart. If we love one another as we love ourselves, well don't we need to love ourselves first as God loves us? And when we love ourselves the judgement falls away.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks  So, once again we are in the situation where someone contradicts themselves in a single post.. "The distinction between us is how we see the words of Jesus" meaning that Tim admits to "seeing" the words differently from yourself or I.


"My only motive is God's love to be expressed in truth which came from Jesus's words or those of the apostles, which Jesus appointed." Yet he's already admitted that this truth is different for each person looking at those words.

Yet in a previous post we have "It is not my point of view....." and "I used to be where you are and I did change... " So, apparently he's been travelling around Asia, Africa and South America assisting people who are struggling with their lives (I'm currently in Bolivia) and it's led you to be like this? I doubt that, very much..

There is NOTHING in Tims words that convinces me he holds the only truth, in fact, I'm fairly convinced, given the contradictions, he doesn't know clearly what is being asked for from Jesus, yet he clearly believes he does, and is the only one that knows God on this thread. The stronger we object to his viewpoint, the more convinced he becomes that he is the holder of the truth.


So I say to you this Tim, for the last time.. Jesus spent time among people. He spent his life, not in a synagogue among the religious zealots of the time. You are in danger of becoming a zealot, if you are not already. Put your bible down, you already know the scriptures, and go out there into the world and show people love as Christ did. 


I have worked with prostitutes and drug takers, orphans and other people who are lost to the world. With Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus and Atheists, and many others, in equal partnership. I make no judgement on what someone "is", only that they work with me with an open heart. But you're exhausting, your heart is so closed, you think you feel the love of God, but from the outside your words seem so cold and empty and meaningless. You repeat Christ's words in an order that suits you without understanding the key messages that you are given.

I'm tired of this Tim. I'm tired of listening to your strange judgemental world you surround yourself with, I'm tired of being polite to you. I am not God, I do my best, but I am not God, and my patience has run out.

You believe you follow Jesus and understand the words, yet I believe I follow Jesus, and understand the meaning of those words as they are applied to the real world. This is so much different to the meaning that you put forth, I have seen with my own eyes children with no food and water, with bellies inflated from malnutrition, and never once asked if the people I was working with were Christians, it made no difference, the actions of those people were Christian enough for me. God is not limited to a book, God is found through action not words.

Please Tim, stop preaching such a hateful, insulting interpretation of Gods words.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks 

Your standards are relative to this world but could you explain how your standards relate to God or His standards? Please use terms from some translation of the Bible to explain how  First you have to know the person, their life experience and how they think, feel and believe about THEMSELVES. I am certain YOU know you are right but that might change with the next high tide or hurricane storm.


The root of someones pain is relative to some action they took or a relationship with someone who decided to act on some belief of theirs. If a person decides to not take a lifeline thrown to them, that is their choice. If a person can hear the whole message of Jesus's life, ministry, sacrifice and resurrection, that is their choice but it is the truth that God sent for ALL mankind. The life changing experience comes from God, not me. I can minister to any outward expression or need but it takes the Holy Spirit to direct me and heal the heart. In fact the Holy Spirit can use anyone or any object to heal the hurt regardless of how deep or severe it might be. This is way more, much more than any "magic pill". I am pointing to the living God, creator of the world. The ONLY God there ever was, is or ever will be. This living God knows more about any person than they know about themselves. Nothing else compares and God is ALWAYS the same for everyone, from eons before Jesus and for all time in the future.

If one chooses not to believe then they have to take that up with God. It doesn't do any good to argue with me since I am on the same level as everyone else on this planet. I didn't write the Bible, nor do I understand all of it. What I do know is that I am getting closer to Jesus all the time. And, Yes, I am rigid in my belief until someone can show me, with scripture, where I need to change. Just reiterating how I am making everyone miserable, how I am hurting people, how I need to show love, all these are relativism pertaining to how the world thinks. It will never have any bearing on my belief.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I am not going to get into a God volley. My God is the creator of the world, the universe. There is no other God. Never has been nor will there ever be any other living God. This is not arrogance at all. It is acknowledging who God is and what His attributes are. They are all clearly spelled out for all to read.


I do own my world view. But it is NOT only from my experience. It is a world view that is from the beginning of time that will last until the new world is created.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks I can't anymore, I know I've said this before, but I'm learning my lesson, finally.


You believe whatever you want Tim, and if you truly want to help and bring people the love and peace Christ has to offer how about just saying that. That Christ has infinite love, peace and serenity to offer, and leave it at that, instead of pointing out all the ways in which someone is lacking.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon 

Why he called on us to love and not judge. Because judgement of another is just a projection of our own heart. If we love one another as we love ourselves, well don't we need to love ourselves first as God loves us?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon 

Could it possibly be the hearer or the reader that is missing some meaning of what they might otherwise understand? Just maybe.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon Yes Ono!! More or less what I was saying as well. We cannot love ourselves so we cannot believe anyone else, including Christ, could love us, until we do the work as to why we feel unworthy, unlovable in the first place, and that is exactly when we can truly feel Christ's and anyone else's love and judgment most certainly falls away!


Love that, BTW. 


Thank you Ono for your loving heart 


Tiffani
Tiffani

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks Tim, I think David's just trying to get you to own the fact that you have a particular lens through which you see the world (i.e., a worldview) just like everyone else does. I get the impression that you think your particular lens is wholly infallible because it isn't yours at all, but God's.


You're human, and your very human worldview is flawed, just as mine is. To argue for anything else is to make God in your own image. 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I will be happy to speak to the hope, love, peace, mercy, grace, wisdom and healing of Jesus. That is what most of the Bible is about. I would be dishonest and irresponsible if I didn't mention the other side of the coin. The rest of the story.

The truth is important because otherwise, none of the benefits are possible. Oh, sure people get some benefits anyways. But to be consistent, the truth is like what wraps it all into a neat package that is really, really, really cool. It's kind of like getting a gift and not noticing any of the wrapping or the name on the tag of who it is from. If I got a gift from someone that has told me lies and tricked me and did all kinds of nasty things to me, I would refuse that gift. However, if the tag said it was from a one who was known to love and care, then I would take as much skill and care as possible in opening that package so as not to damage anything. The point is, truth ties all the other gifts into one package that is easy to recognize and enjoy. Without the truth holding it all together, none of the gifts make any sense. In fact the reality is like many times the gifts are not recognized for what they are.

You are so right in some of what you say. If only it was balanced with the rest of the story. One has to take the bad with the good when it comes through the Bible from God. Especially when there is more good than bad.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon  I think that is about the first realistic thing you have said in a long time Tim.. I wonder though whether you would apply that to yourself, or whether you only think it applies to others who don't share your opinions?


SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @fajitaknocks  So how can you talk of the love of God when you cannot allow others to find comfort in their relationship with God, Tim?


You have been hurt, by the sound of it, but that's not a reason to hurt others, it's an excuse, you choose to use God as a way to make you feel better by making others feel worse.

I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm doing the same, but I'm holding up a mirror to you.. If you manage to become without sin, then go and cast the stone, but until that time, you can lead your life of sin, as we all do, and find a way to make the world a better place without your judgements. You are not God, you have no place in this world to make judgements, least of all upon yourself.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

I believe most people would say that learning anything from history could be included in their world view without them experiencing it. I know I have read or heard various people relating their world view and I have incorporated that into my world view without actually experiencing it.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Tiffani @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @fajitaknocks 

You are so right on. However, the truth I have been talking about has nothing to do with my world view but everything to do with my belief system. My world view is what I am trying to replace with Jesus since His world view is perfect and mine is not.


I realize that I am fallible and God is not fallible, nor will God ever be since He is the only one to create a world and I intend to live by His teachings and example even though I know I will still fail if it depends on my world view.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks I'm happy to hear this Tim, and I agree I wouldn't be opening a gift from someone who lied, tricked and did nasty things to me either.


What I believe we have all been trying to say Tim is, for the most part, what you just said. The difference, for me at least, is that I take and use the bible for what it is....the inspired word of God, still written, translated, interpreted by men...all fallible, all with their own bias. I see, feel and believe God to be limitless in his love and devotion to us humans that he presents himself in many different ways, each with the same purpose, to bring us closer to him. I believe that God's infinite wisdom about how, what and why we humans tick is the reason for different religions, all get us to the same point just down a different road, all began at a particular time and place that that was exactly what people needed. He made us all unique and different why would we think that he would only present himself to us in a "one size fits all" kind of way?I certainly don't think he would, I believe he would design many ways in which we all can come to him.


All I'm saying, we are saying, is what you just said,( a gift from a tricking, nasty liar), no one is drawn nearer with negative, whether you think it is truth or not. It is not showing the great unconditional love, compassion and awesomeness of Christ when you start condemning people ( and saying he is doing the same), which you have no right to do, you have no business deciding for God who he accepts or what his plan is for that particular person. His love for us is already,(always has been) there, it's up to us to see, feel, find and accept it...stop getting in the way of people doing that, please!


Tell them of how his great love has always been there, how he knew each and every one of us before we were even born, how he will love us unconditionally no matter what, how his love will never leave us and even when we may stumble and fall he will always be there to help us back up, with open loving arms, even if we stumble and fall many times. That his love is limitless. And even then, if someone asks you to stop, STOP, your work is done, you have planted the seed, let God do the watering, pruning and caring for that seed, it is his after all.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z 

I apply that to myself every time I read the Bible or hear any message about/from the Bible.


I don't have a problem with changing my belief or my life when a clear message of what should be changed and why. The truth does that for honest people and that is how I arrived at the place where I am currently.


I love God, God loves me. I am spreading God's love by telling the truth as Jesus did. No body can refute that. Attacking me is not a refutation regardless of how many people think alike in their group. The truth will always stand on its own merits.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks 

Do you have any proof of me not allowing "others to find comfort in their relationship with God"? I have presented the truth and you don't respond to that.


I have been healed of my pain and suffering. I actually learned more from that than I could have learned from any other experience. The reason others feel worse is not from the truth because hearing the truth doesn't have those results.


Finally, I am not making judgments. My words are from Jesus or one of the disciples. I change some words and make the message my own but it is based on Jesus or the disciples message. You can't attack Jesus directly so you attack someone delivering the same truth. It doesn't affect me except it is sad when the truth is dismissed and people keep living according to their own principles, or lack thereof.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

Is the truth of any value here? I could respond in ways that should be regarded as love and truth but for some reason it is taken for what it is not meant to be.

If God meant for us to all be different, on different paths, then Jesus would not have said anything about finding a narrow path and few would find it. He didn't say anything about many paths except that many people would find the broad way. Jesus also said that He was the way, He was the light of the world, He was the bread of life, He was the water of life. In other words, Jesus is THE ONE to follow and obey. That doesn't sound like one size fits all. That sounds like Jesus is what every body needs and He should know when He is the one to create us.

So now you equate a gift from a tricking, nasty liar with the truth? or at least what I think is the truth? Again, if it were my words, your opposition would make sense. Don't believe the words from Jesus if you don't want to, or you believe they mean something than what was meant. All I do is read the Bible and try to live by the words as the Holy Spirit leads me. Maybe it would be better just to quote the verses, but you have already said you believe they are only the words from people like you and me.

The words of Jesus are never to be stopped. To take your last analogy, the watering and pruning and caring is to be done by each one of us for each one of us. Of course, God does work behind the scene at times. But that does not mean we stop nurturing our fellow brothers and sisters as opportunity presents.

Finally, I never have condemned anyone. We all have the choice to be what God wants us to be. To condemn would mean that I was deciding for them and I am not.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z  No Tim, you aren't, you are driving people from God. You are no more doing Gods service than the self-serving evangelists who promise on TV miracles if you just donate $10 to their pockets. You twist the truth and close Gods words by making them inaccessible to anyone. You've never once stopped to consider that God may be talking to you through those people who "think alike in their group".. Those people who are Christians in their thoughts and deeds and not just because they can read.


People with attitudes like yours are the cause of the decline in Christianity in this world, and you don't care because you enjoy the exclusivity, and it's THAT selfishness which is proof enough for me that your "Christianity" is what Christ came to this earth to remove, the Zealots would be proud of you.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @Tiffani @fajitaknocks 

A world view is how I deal with the world. The world and myself is limited by my five senses. Of course it includes my imagination and experiences but I can't relate to any of it until one or more of my five senses is aware. For instance, I can do mind altering drugs, alcohol or any other mind altering phenomenon. But until it affects my hearing, feel, sight smell and/or taste then my world view stays the same. I can think of something within or beyond my limited world.

A belief system is my trust in the living God, the creator of the universe. Belief has nothing at all to do with the world. I believe in Jesus to bridge the chasm between me, being mortal and sinful, and God who is Holy, righteous, and the source of love, all enlightenment and wisdom.


That is the long version. The short version is my world view is physical. My belief system is spiritual or at least leads to a spiritual world.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @fajitaknocks Well first, couldn't Christ/God/ go by any name, at any given time? Couldn't he be all of these, from all religions, presenting himself at the time and place and in the way that was needed and where it was needed? Of course he could.


And I'm sorry I believe God is always doing work and we only think it is behind the scenes.I believe he never stops working, in us, through us and for us, all! And I never said we shouldn't be nurturing, what I said was when a fellow brother or sister, one of your fellow humans, one of God's children, tells you you aren't be nurturing you should stop and let him take it from there. He will know where they need to be and when they need to be there, certainly far better than you or I will.


And lastly, from where we are all sitting, you have exactly done the deciding for us and deciding who is the recipient of God's love, and you have repeatedly let us know where, what, when and how we all are lacking. 


P.S. The gift analogy was yours not mine, I was just agreeing that I wouldn't feel secure receiving a gift from a tricky, nasty liar.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z 

Thank you for pointing out that I am driving people from God. They are not any more distant from God than when they were born. Unless you have proof, that is what you want to believe. I never ask for money and if I got any from someone, somehow or if I was forced to take money, I would give it back or otherwise get rid of it as fast as I could. You SAY I twist the truth but that is as far as it gets to what is real. You don't know one thing of what if I consider or don't consider. As for me, if it doesn't make scriptural connection then it is irrelevant. Scriptural reference is the real time guide for all Christians.


The rest of your posting is more of the same. It looks/sounds like you don't agree and that is the cause of the attack. When I disagree with someone, I try to make connection with them through some common ground. Again, this would be some scripture, any scripture rather than personal attacks.


It's not the scripture words alone that are important. The only important thing is the Holy Spirit using scripture to speak to ones soul, their spirit. I am sorry I have failed in this regard, but if I used scripture in any way, you would be offended at that also. The only way to connect with some people is to give them what they want, agree so they won't have any bad experience, make their world so peaceful they won't have any choice but to be happy. That's not me.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @fajitaknocks 

Good question, but no, God has many names from Jewish tradition. But to have a name from some other source it would be confusing and God is not the author of confusion. First thought is how Jesus is exclusively the only path to get to heaven after one dies. No other religion has Holiness as part of their beliefs. Many other attributes apply also, if you want the whole list. All other religions are seeking and reaching out for a god, but the only god they will find is one made up from a mortal imagination.

Why are you sorry? It is true about God working behind the scenes.

It is rather curious as to why someone would not see nurturing in truth as it is presented from Jesus. Everything about Jesus's life and resurrection is filled with love, hope, peace, longsuffering, grace and mercy. It is becoming more clear now that the love that is referred to most often has to do with emotions and worldly comforts rather than the love that Jesus taught and exampled. Of all the teachings in the Bible, there is none about not caring, not witnessing, not encouraging others to be growing in the wisdom of the Lord. Finding God's will is most important and I find it ironic that other Christians would not be encouraging me to continue in the faith. Instead, it is harping on either love or not judging, both of which is a form of "accept a given premise if we are to accept an outsiders concepts".

In reality, we are all in the life construct together and it behooves each participant to be honest with ourselves and then as a group so that progress can be had in the war of the flesh against the spirit. If anyone is lacking the only part that I point out that it might be that some basic choices have been made in error. It doesn't take much time to respond in truth as much as I have attempted to talk about truth and all that follows. My prayer is that we all get right with God and live according to His will. To that extent, why not have that conversation?

The gift analogy was mine and the message was totally missed. Probably because of my presentation by leaving out crucial words. The dichotomy was supposed to be a gift from Satan or a gift from Jesus. The the risk of making up anything on the spot is it might be unclear.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @Tiffani @fajitaknocks 

Right, nothing I believe will change or modify the world in any way. I can believe for something to happen, for however long I want and nothing will change because I believe it.


My spiritual beliefs are not for the purpose of interacting or responding to the world. My spiritual beliefs are for the sole purpose of acknowledging God's presence and His attributes. If God wants to alter the world in any way, it would not change my relationship with my Heavenly father. That is my belief system based on Jesus's teachings and those of the apostles.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley I believe that your prayer IS that we all get right with God and will have a loving peaceful life with him. I believe the issue we all have is that you don't give anyone a chance to find that for themselves. Each of us is on our own personal journey through this life of ours, and the way in which you have found love and peace in Christ might not be the same path for someone else, whether or not the circumstances of your life and someone else's are identical, God may have a different plan for someone else, a different path to get them to the same place. You don't seem to want to give everyone the opportunity for them to have their own journey, you keep telling everyone what and how their journey needs to be. Let people take the time on their own journeys to find what they need to find. 

I'm not saying you should lie, what I'm saying is your path got you where you are today, let everyone have their own path, and stop trying to make your path theirs, and maybe trust that God knows what he's doing.


Now to touch on your first paragraph, about God and names for him. You say it would be confusion, and this is another place we differ. I think it makes perfect sense. What's confusing about God revealing himself to his children at any given place or time, in what means he sees fit? It's only confusing if you limit God.  I'm pretty sure you base this on the bible, but what about before the bible existed, or what about those people, for instance some hidden people deep in the Amazon? Do you think God would deny any of his children Himself, simply because a book wasn't compiled yet, or  to those without access to that book? I don't, not for one minute, think that God denies himself to any of us, now or at any time in the past or will he in the future. I believe he would reveal himself to all of his children in every place in time and geography, and would be called many different things, in whatever capacity that was appropriate and needed for those times and places. You don't know whether or not there are still undiscovered peoples in this great big world of ours and you honestly think that the bible is the only way in which God reveals himself? Oh Tim, how you limit God. And just to use what you know,   doesn't it say in the bible, "that with God ALL things are possible"? And here's another;


"Jeremiah 32:27 Behold, I am the LORD, the God of all flesh: is there any thing too hard for me?"


When I see God I see endless possibilities, I see the impossible made possible.  I don't believe I have all the answers, I just believe that God does, and I trust in him for all of his children, and I trust that he knows each and everyone of our hearts, minds and souls. My problem is I don't trust man to know a persons heart, mind and soul and to pass judgment on it in the name of God.

And, no I don't believe it has anything to do with what one person calls him or what another person calls him, he knows what is their heart.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley


Tim, I recommend the film Fearless with Jeff Bridges. It is about a man who undergoes a powerful spiritual awakening and succeeds in alienating himself from almost everyone around him.


The truth he encounters is great and powerful, but incomplete, and he finally realizes that he must listen and be with the people around him, not live in a realm of ideas and abstractions.


Check it out:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fearless_(1993_film)


Similarly, Into the Wild:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Into_the_Wild_(film)


What these seekers come to understand is the importance of this world and its inhabitants, warts and all.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @Tiffani @fajitaknocks


Okay, so your behaviors in regards to the world and everyone in it have nothing to do with your beliefs, are not influenced by your beliefs, have no bearing on your beliefs, and cannot affect your beliefs? In other words, there is no connection whatsoever between your earthly behavior and your beliefs?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

Everyone has their own journey and most people would like to journey with someone because a companion will be helpful when we befall tragedy like the man the good Samaritan found. Contrary to the common belief here, I am not, nor would I even if I could requiring anything of anyone.

Yes, God could reveal Himself to anyone, anywhere, anytime. The Bible says to test the spirits to know if in fact God is the source or not. If anyone does not have a book or a leader to introduce them to the true living God, then God has said He would meet them where they are as a place to start. However, The Bible is the one source we have to check what God says about present day revelations. In so many instances people accept the enlightenment that makes the most sense and that is ok if that satisfies them. But if it isn't in the Bible then it is going to lead to a dead end. Literally.

I probably do limit God in some ways. That is another good reason to have a companion to talk with that can connect with the living God of creation. Any other God is false, and there are many false gods in this world. Also, my limitations of God is only temporary because sooner or later even I wake up to God's voice.

The verse in Jeremiah is one of my favorites. The answer to that question is No. The point of the question is not rhetorical or academic. The point of it to me is to get me to think of God as much more wise, omnipotent, omniscient, loving than I could ever be. God is the source of every good gift. Which was my point of the gift package story.

I agree with the last part except I would add one caveat: God will never go against any words from any part of the Bible. So that is a big reason to know ALL of the Word, not just a convenient part that supports what I already believe/think.

Please, if I have missed any part of the meaning of God's word, I would appreciate hearing about it.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley 

What don't you get about my background? I have lived on both sides of the alienation. I have been subjected to people who believe all kinds of strange precepts and demand that others go along with each strand. If anyone is alienated from what I have said then maybe their feelers are a little too long or if not that, then I am sorry they don't get what I project about the Word of Jesus.

That last sentence is most curious since you speak of "this world and its inhabitants, warts and all." I ask how that doesn't include me? Am I being alienated again? Yes, it could be that I am the biggest wart of all, but I don't consider myself important in any sense of the word. When I raise up Jesus and His teachings, I get personally alienated rather than the teachings. This must be very ironic in any discussion. Again my words are NOT important, my feelings are NOT important. My only intention is to present the most perfect person and that the precepts and principles I talk about are worth consideration for a faithful life.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @Tiffani @fajitaknocks 

Now you have gone from belief to behavior.

Staying with the original topic of my belief influencing the world, no, my belief is a response to Jesus's teachings.

In the reverse, my beliefs can be modified by the world, IF I don't keep centered, focused on Jesus.

Since you have changed the topic to my behavior, yes, of course my behavior will change by way of my beliefs. But that does not preclude my world view will change. My world view may or may not change, but that does not have any bearing on my beliefs or my spiritual life. My world view is inconsequential with anything since my spiritual life and my beliefs are first consideration.

It is like this: When I believed in Jesus and I received a new life and relationship, spiritually, then this physical world(along with any view of it) was less of a factor. And it will continue to be less and less of a factor the closer I get to God and that relationship grows.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z P.S. I guess what I'm trying to say in a rather too long comment is this. 


First there was the Torah, the book the jews had. They were waiting for their messiah, but they must have been missing something because God sent his son, Christ. But because HE didn't meet the criteria they had in their book, their words of God, they could/didn't believe he WAS their messiah. I feel like if Christ came here today he would still be crucified, only this time by we christians, because of our book, and all the words that we are bound up in. That we wouldn't believe He was who he is, always has been, before the beginning of time, now, and long after we are gone.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z Hi Tim, I have a few things to maybe think about. First is the point I was making about before the bible existed or people had access to it. God couldn't go against any word from the bible if it didn't exist yet, or preachers, clergy etc. So people would not have had a comparison to know or to see if was or was not against God.

And you do realize that for many years ( way back in the day) that the bible was withheld from the common man, the church held it and only allowed clergy (so to speak) access to it, or to preach from it, telling everyone what it said, what to believe or what God said. Which is one of my reason for not seeing the bible as the be all end all, because if those holding it could keep it from God's children, they could have kept some parts, altered some parts etc. 


So when you say, "to know ALL of the word" you cannot be 100% certain you have even been given ALL of the word in the first place, or that it hasn't been altered. And I certainly am not so arrogant that I think we christians are the only ones that God has revealed himself to in this one way and that those who never had the bible didn't receive the same loving relationship with God. And as for the  part where you said, "God will not go against any words from any part of the bible", well how do you know that for sure when parts have been withheld, possibly altered? But even to use the bible, did the words of God not differ from the old testament to the new? In the old testament there was no Christ, it was a waiting game for the messiah, and the with the new Christ came and yes some of the words did change. No longer were we waiting and Christ gave new, expanded versions and said that some of the old laws were now void, so to speak. The jews were no longer the only chosen people, we all were!


And just to give an example of each personal journey and not knowing the mind of God, (because we are mere humans). Take the book of Job for instance, now that was some personal journey he took. Looking at it from a human perspective, at the time it was happening, people may have said, " how horrific is this, it couldn't possibly be something that God knows and has allowed". So how do you know that everyone's personal journey is not what God knows, allows and wants for that individual? You couldn't possibly know, because you don't know what, if any, lessons God has set forth, to be learned , for the benefit of each person.


So when I believe with God all things are possible, I truly believe that and that he has things under control. 


And just a little more food for thought, maybe, just maybe we as a people accepted and knew God from our heart before any words were put to paper, but we got so far away from our hearts that God put something in motion to give us our understanding and belief and relationship with him through our hearts, but we ruined that too, and started to put more love, faith and trust in a book rather than in the heart and hands of the creator. Use it as a starting point, a reference, but if you truly trust God allow HIM to fill your heart and stop filling it with so many words ( that may or may not have truly come from him) that HE can no longer get through.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens

Well, you should watch the movies, as art is so much more powerful than my words. That said, SPOILER ALERT!


Bridges character in Fearless experiences a profound truth and begins living his life fearlessly and with no tolerance for the mundane. He cannot relate to most people and anything less than the absolute cannot hold his attention. Before long, he is almost completely alone in the world, though he is on some level happy as he is buoyed by his new found freedom. In the end, circumstances yank him back to the mundane reality he shares with his wife and family and he finds that being present and loving with them is more important than the high spiritual plane he had been occupying.


Chris McCandless, the young man upon whom Into the Wild is based, was a brilliant individual who profoundly rejected modern society. He saw his parents as sell-outs who only valued money and had no idea of what was truly important. After purposely isolating himself in the wilderness and achieving the "more perfect state" he sought out, McCandless become very ill from eating a poisonous plant. Shortly before his death, he realized the precious value of the people who loved him and, though he did not make it back to them, he embraced them in his heart and saw past the differences.


So, no, Tim, you are not the wart I speak of. We all have our warts, whatever they might be. When you say, "You can't be in a gay relationship and get to heaven," it's the equivalent of saying, "You sure are warty!"


If you truly wish to save people, Tim, quit talking about the warts. Tell people about their beautiful souls and how Jesus can help them be more in touch with their divine origins. Leave the rest to Jesus and God, I'm pretty sure that they can take it from there.


Watch the movies, Tim.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @Tiffani @fajitaknocks


I don't know where you are or what the weather is like, but here in Portland the sun is shining on the green trees, God's glory is immediate, apparent and available. No intermediary text or teacher is needed.


Praise the Lord.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @Tiffani @fajitaknocks


I don't understand the value of your belief system if it doesn't have a bearing on how you interact with the people around you.


It sounds like omphaloskepsis which is, admittedly, enjoyable, but does very little to help others.


Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

The only action needed by the Jews would have been to follow the prophesies throughout Isaiah, Jeremiah and some others. Actually, the Bible is all inclusive in that nothing other that Gods word is needed. The same is true of Jesus Christ return. God has told us every detail, if only one wants to know then believing is required.

Ono
Ono

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

I just want to thank you for sharing your personal experience with God. It's full of good news.  There is no condemnation when you walk with God. Thank you for letting others see this in your heart!

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

CONTINUED.......

Jesus himself said he didn't come to do away with the law but to fulfill it. Meaning: Jesus showed everyone how to live the law since Jesus was the ONLY person to obey every law even to the point of being His own sacrificial lamb and that for everybody. So, yes we all are grafted into the family of God.

It's not that Job lost everything that is so important. The lesson of Job is to have faith in God for everything. Even his kids that were killed were not tortured but taken by God to be with Him. The journey is not the same for everyone but everyone has the same resources to live by. It definitely is terrible that some have too much tradition for them to see the truth, but God will find a way to reveal the truth to who ever seeks it.

The Bible is a guide book, study text, prophecy, history, source of love, source of encouragement. So to say it is only a starting point is not the full story. In fact, if I were given one choice on a deserted island of what I wanted for the rest of my life, there wouldn't be any other choice but the Bible that could sustain life. Faith in God that is promoted in the Bible means that God would provide any and every thing needed. This can't be proven in that scenario outside of it except to say this planet is a deserted island for many people that have chosen other means to live by and they will live a relatively good life until some life threat happens. When that happens that relatively good life is not possible and when they end up in that afterlife is the revelation of what they should have chosen. That choice being the gift from God or the gift from Satan. The Bible is the only place to go that explains the two choices. Not just a starting point, but it points in the right direction for anyone who seeks to know the truth.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

When God first introduced himself to Moses, God said he was "I am". God will make known what he wants us to know about himself and that includes what his name is. God has changed what to call Him for various times. My impression is that God in His wisdom chose to reach out to us at all is in itself a miracle. For some it was and is a special name like Jehovah. And for many centuries the people of Israel wouldn't say any name for God. The closest they would get to a name was the letters "YHWH" (pronounced Yahweh. The point is now that it matters more that we show respect and honor, not exactly a formula or set of rules.

Yes, the official church held all the power from about 300 A.D. till about the 1400's. Still though, the Holy Spirit would guide people as they sought God's will and the truth. Even through the Dark ages, the original manuscripts were preserved and that is what is used to translate into modern day languages. It is amazing and something to have faith in what God preserved and inspired, in spite of tradition and the institutionalized religion. If we don't have all of the word that God wants for us then all we have to do is pray for wisdom.

Arrogant? Really? So help me with this one, please. My understanding is that I am a Christian because I believe in Jesus Christ and follow as close as I can to His teachings. And if I were to expect to get a Christian insight or wisdom, I would go to Christ for that. How is it arrogant to expect to get Christian wisdom from none other than Jesus Christ? You might come back with how wisdom is not exclusive to God or Jesus Christ and that is true to a small degree. The true wisdom comes from God and all other sources have been duplicates of that. Although it is possible to go back to before anything was written and say there was another source. The way it makes sense to me is the origination of everything. Some people are satisfied with life of all kinds spontaneously started out of nothing. So with wisdom, truth, love, etc., it had to have a source. Since life itself couldn't have started spontaneously, neither could any other good gift. It ALL had to be created and given to us by God the creator. Again, please show me how that is arrogant.

The Old Testament was a prophetical book. From Adam on there was prophecy and planned reconciliation. The new testament is also prophetic. Of course, there are lessons about living and worship. But there is great hope and love expressed in the prophecy that Jesus Christ is coming back to conquer Satan and take believers the way home. No other religion or belief is capable of reconciliation us with the creator. They don't even speak about it, except to speak of nirvana or some such nebulous and vague idea that could mean any thing. And they certainly don't have anyone to bridge the gap between this life and the next one. Even the belief of reincarnation, although it has been tradition for many generations and no real consensus on it's origination, it has no proven results and yet people believe it to their own detriment. Some people are so steeped in tradition or their own imaginations that believing a lie is easier than the truth. That's another reason for believing the Bible, the ONLY source of truth.

    TO BE CONTINUED........... 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley 

The movies were not material in connecting me to the topic at hand. When Jesus met anyone, He ALWAYS made their life changed in a way so profoundly that they could not stay as they were. Also Jesus said we are to show His love to others by ministering in a more profound manner. Jesus said that we would be a servant and give love and hope by living by example how the truth that He taught would resonate. I am working on that but I can't stay as I was and not tell everyone the truth of how my life was changed. I witness to all that I meet so they might enjoy a life of truth and love as I have experience it. A movie is great, but I have my own witness story to tell and I do that as best as I can.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @Tiffani @fajitaknocks 

My belief is in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. That is my relationship and it is up to God to direct the impact of my beliefs. All I know is how much joy it is being available to be a servant to anyone who comes along and God supplies the way to interact and the means to fill any needs.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z And there in lies some of the problem Tim. From my, admittedly limited, knowledge and reading of the Jewish faith, we Christians have indeed mistranslated and misinterpreted their original books. For instance the jews say that in Isaiah what is meant by the singular HE is really not one person but one nation, all the jewish people, because they are bound as one, so the suffering servant is, to them meant as the jewish nation. Which is consistent throughout their books, but we Christians have changed their original meaning to be one person, HE, Christ.


So this comes right back around. If we have books in our bible that were originally from another religion, ( the jewish religion) and we have changed their text and meanings, and christianity has, (the jews have the original scrolls so they know it has been changed) where does that leave us?


I know where it leaves me, using all of this as what it is, words of men, inspired by God, but still open to the flaws of men and I trust that God fills my heart with his truth, as it relates to the words men have written down.


here is a link that you might find helpful or interesting.

http://www.jewfaq.org/torah.htm

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Ono @kathleen z @Tim Conley Thank you Ono. I have been truly blessed to find you and our little group here. You are always a source of inspiration.


And I have not forgotten your idea of having a conversation about our kids. If you want to start working on it my schedule is not so crazy right now?

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @kathleen z

"The journey is not the same for everyone but everyone has the same resources to live by. It definitely is terrible that some have too much tradition for them to see the truth, but God will find a way to reveal the truth to who ever seeks it."

Here's a story you've probably heard, Tim.

A man is in his home and hears that a flood is coming. He says, "The Lord will take care of me." His neighbors start fleeing their homes and tell him, "Come on with us, the flood is coming!" The man says, "No, the Lord will take care of me."

Soon, the waters are rising. A National Guard truck drives by and the driver says, "Get in! The water is getting higher!" The man says, "No, the Lord will take care of me."

Later, as the road has become a river, some people go by the man’s house in a motor boat. By now, the man has moved to the second floor of his home. The people in the boat say, “Get in, before your house is underwater!” The man says, "No, the Lord will take care of me."


The water is soon flooding the second floor, and the man climbs on the roof. A helicopter flies overhead, lowers a ladder, and over the loudspeaker the man hears, “Climb up, before you get swept away!” The man says, "No, the Lord will take care of me."


The water continues to rise, the man is swept away, and drowns.


When he gets to Heaven, he meets God and says, “Lord, I put my faith in you, why didn’t you keep me safe?”


God says, “My dear child, I sent your neighbors, I sent a truck, I sent a boat, and I sent a helicopter. Why did you turn a blind eye to the help I offered?”


We’re trying, Tim. We’re trying to help you break free of your ossified notions. Please open your eyes.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z I didn't say you were arrogant I said believing God limits himself, in any way, at any time, to reveal himself in only one way was. And I never said looking to Christ was arrogant, I said limited him to only thinking he reveals himself to "christians", through the bible is arrogant.


And do you really not see the point I was making? That if the jewish scrolls, (the originals) of certain books of the bible, the text was changed, altered, mistranslated or misinterpreted,(which it was), it isn't what was intended to start with. Just trying to get you to see that if someone didn't understand anothers culture or language fully, like HE meaning the whole of the jewish people and not a singular person, that will lead to other things that followed to be misunderstood.


And I wasn't asking what the lesson was in Job, I understand the lesson, the thing I was trying to get you to see was that was his journey, but maybe people seeing it at the time would have said some of the same things you have said to us here..." it's because of sins of the flesh", " your not following the word of God", etc. when in actuality it had nothing to do with that. Looking at something from the outside, we'd have no idea what God's plan is and what each person's journey might look like.


As for a deserted island, again we differ, It's God that sustain life, not the bible, and my faith in him fills me and HE goes with me wherever I am.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens  Tell me Tim.. Tell me something about the Love of God that you experience, and why you think that is exclusive to you? Why do you believe that I and the others on here don't know what it is to experience the Love of God?

Do you think we do not know? Do you think we have no relationship with God, simply because we haven't shared the path that you are on?

Honestly Tim, for someone who claims to know the Bible so well, you don't demonstrate the lessons that the book was trying to teach..

Back in the day when I had my own head stuck inside the Bible, the preacher came to me and told me this: One day Jon, you will come to realise that you can't feel God through a book. You can only feel God by emulating the lessons you find there.. God is not in the printed word, those words are 2000 years old, and were only ever meant to guide us to learn how to love one another. God is out there, among people, showing himself every day in acts of kindness by people who have no cause to be kind.. The feeling you get about what a good Christian you are by coming to church every Sunday and studying the bible.. That's nothing compared to the joy of putting bread in the hands of the poor and needy, by helping to protect the innocent and the vulnerable. By putting yourself out, not to spread "the word" but to spread "the Love".. People won't meet God because you force the word down their throats, people will meet God when you allow God to work through you, by showing the love and compassion of Christ, and only showing them the word when they ask.. The Bible isn't a set of rules for others to live by because you say so, it's a set of lessons that help us learn what Compassion and Love really are.

It took me some time to learn the lessons he wanted to teach me. Some gentle, and sometimes fairly strong arguments, but eventually I got it.. God is not a "mental concept" that requires thought, God is the thing that fills the void in the absence of thought. God is everything nice about me, God is kind and accepting. God is more patient than I am. God will allow me to take the risks I need to take to find my calling, and God has ALWAYS been there when I've fallen, even when I was afraid.

Tim. I know you're fearful to go back to where you were if you leave the confines of the safety of the Bible, but trust in God.. You are being led, not astray, but towards a new growth in your relationship to God.. The Bible will still be there, unchanging, if you need to turn back, but find some courage, trust in God to lead you along the path that you need to travel, the one that we're trying to lead you down, not further from God, but closer. You don't need to trust me, David, Kathleen and the others, you only need to trust God and decide "Ok, let's listen to what they have to say with an open heart, and see what I', actually being told.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens

If you were ministering to people in Tanzania, do you think it would make sense to study Swahili first? Or would you just show up and start preaching in English and expect to be understood?

Watching these films might help you to understand communication with others better and might actually help you to bring more people to Christ.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

That is fine to think of scripture in that way.

For me, the written word is one way for God to reach out to me in my limited understanding. If God wants to change a complete chapter, that is great since it means God cares to keep me up to date. I am not going to pretend to know all about the translating and how it has gotten us to this point. Everything I read in the Bible has several places other than the one place it is read that give it context. So, to sum it up, reading all verses that pertain to that topic gives a complete picture. God knows how to preserve His message, in any way He wants to present it. That is why I have faith in God.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

And what, pray tell, would I need rescued from?

My relationship with God is solid but of course growth in many areas would indeed help with being closer but this progress is happening every day even when I face new trials as I go about ministering to other pilgrims.

Thanks for caring and sharing.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

And I certainly am not so arrogant that I think we christians are the only ones that God has revealed himself to in this one way and that those who never had the bible didn't receive the same loving relationship with God.

This is precisely the opposing view that I have. So it is the same as saying I am arrogant. Otherwise it would be splitting hairs so finely that it would have to be organic. If Jesus Christ and his teachings are not exclusive to Christianity then I sure would not know where to make the cut. Is there any reality in believing Christ has revealed any truth to anyone from any other belief? There should be some proof of some kind.


The statements that God can do anything and then in the almost same paragraph it is stated how impossible it would be for God to overcome the point you make of the Jewish language, scrolls and culture is germane to God's message being lost. It just does not compute in my logic. Either God can plan overcome these obstacles and getting his message out or he can't.


Jobs ordeal and Gods message to Job is the same message to us in our ordeal. Job didn't know about the Holy Spirit like we have today. God met Job where he was and made connection with Job exactly the same as God will do for anyone else, if they want to honor God because of Gods attributes just like Job did.


You are correct in fact God does sustain life. The Bible is Gods word so why would it not have authority if God wants His word to have that and more power? Especially when it is backed up by the Holy Spirit? How do you test the spirits? I know the Holy Spirit is with me since I am able to follow and obey the word of God when the Holy Spirit and the Bible are in agreement.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

First of all, I never claimed to have exclusivity to anything.

Secondly, I have never attempted to silence anyone, even if I could I would not want to.

Thirdly, my intent was and is to share what I know and I believed others would do the same.

Fourth, I have never forced anything on anyone. And I have given to others more needy than myself and I would not hesitate to give my last slice of bread or anything else.

You make it sound like you know all about me while in reality it is all your perception. Ultimately, I am accountable to God but also to those people around that know the circumstances and needs of my community. For that reason I choose to not respond to every insinuation that I don't live up to Jesus commandments in any way. I don't mind questions about me but reject assumptions.

The Bible is at least 2000 years old. Most of it is older than that. I have no clue why you assumed I don't get any farther than the confines(whatever that might be) of the Bible. At any rate, I keep up to date by 1)reading and studying scripture, 2)praying, 3) listening to the Holy Spirit 4)listening to other people that care to share, 5)referring and checking everything with the written word of God.

Of course we should be trusting God to lead us closer by His side. That is very basic, fundamental. You are correct that God will never lead anyone astray. However, there are other spirits in the world that will lead to any where BUT to the Lord. That is the reason for the verse that says to "test the spirits" to be sure of their motive and the direction they lead. No spirit of this world will ever lead anyone towards Jesus and the Holy Spirit will lead away from Jesus. That's the reason for going back to the Bible, God's written word. That's the only way to stay on the straight and narrow, like Jesus said. I listen to everyone here and in my life, but only if they are in alignment with scripture.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley 

I seen these movies and the little I learned from them did advance my knowledge of the topic some. I learn from all sources and I also know Jesus will have patience and give guidance so that it will all make sense to everyone someday. I just hope it is not to late for everyone.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @Tiffani @fajitaknocks 

If I interact with someone, it is me of course. My prayer and hope in that is that God would see fit to use me as proxy for getting His will accomplished. But if you want the real truth on that score, you will have to get God's viewpoint.

Lover of truth
Lover of truth

@Tim Conley @kathleen z

All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.


This includes all the teachings of Jesus, as well as the portions that condemn homosexuality. As professing followers of Christ, I'm amazed to see such little regard for the importance of Scripture when it comes to shaping your values and your opinions ~ and I'm speaking specifically to kathleen z and SwissJon.


Adhering to cultural values and aligning yourselves to popular opinion is more important to you than submitting yourselves to the written word of God. There is no way to read The Bible and walk away with the idea that God approves of same sex relationships, any more than you can arrive at the conclusion that he actually is in favor of adultery.


Because your allegiance lies more with what the world thinks than what God thinks, you can only see disagreement with homosexuality through the lens of hate and bigotry. 


True Christians don't hate homosexuals or mistreat them, but at the same time they cannot support their sin.


It's disgusting to see the two of you using the name of Christ while you spend weeks pontificating and lecturing someone who is trying to uphold the word of God.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @kathleen z And Tim , maybe, just maybe, David was trying to get you to see that the rescuing you need is to not be so bound up in one way that you "miss the boat" that God has sent.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z Right, so God was giving Job a lesson, again which is my point. Everyone's journey may be a lesson that they have to learn, in their own time and way. If it was your lesson you were trying to teach you wouldn't want others coming along and messing with the lesson plan you had laid out would you?


Then again, maybe we are all part of each others personal journeys. All I'm saying is when someone, anyone, asks you to stop, stop. It's disrespectful to them, to yourself and to God not to.


And I never said it would be impossible for God to overcome anything. Maybe the way in which the bible has been compiled, taking books from the jewish faith and christian faith are all part of lessons from God. Maybe we were suppose to be working together instead of the rigid exclusivity both seem to have, and the withholding that has occurred.  Christ was a jew from which Christianity came, he came for us ALL, doesn't sound like there should be any exclusivity involved, the very word ALL tells us that, but we continue to keep missing that.


How do I "test" the spirits,( I don't like that word but for lack of a better one I'll use it). I just talk to God/Christ, and you know what, it never seems to matter if I call him Christ or God, I always get an answer, although sometimes it is not the answer I want or expect, he has never not been there. And I admit, fully, that there are times I get so wrapped up in things that I'm not listening. At those times it always seems that things start getting more chaotic and I wonder " what is going on" and I have to stop, take a deep breath, get to a feeling of calm and then I can hear what God is saying to me.


As far as proof, well isn't that really the opposite of what faith is? I have my own "proof", that is nothing that can be proven by anyone but myself, because it is how and what God has done for me, with me, through me, and only I really know the extent of that "proof" you refer to.  It is my personal proof, through my personal journey. Can you see God working for and through others? Certainly, but whether that is a provable thing, maybe it is, maybe it isn't, maybe it's only proven for the individual. My proof is my personal relationship with God. Isn't that exactly what God wants for each of us? To have a personal relationship with him? My faith is my faith, it doesn't need to be proven to or for anyone else.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @kathleen z

"And I certainly am not so arrogant that I think we christians are the only ones that God has revealed himself to in this one way and that those who never had the bible didn't receive the same loving relationship with God."


So are you saying that God HAS revealed Himself to people of other faiths and those people without the Bible have the same loving relationship with God?

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens  :) Happy to share. When I finally "got it", I got the chills as well..

Let me just share a moment of happiness with you.. This was in 2012 in Malawi.. I had been working with a group of people in the highlands, we had put a water well into a village that was an hours drive on a 4x4 up the most rocky road imaginable.. Shortly after the first water had been taken, we turned to leave, walking away back to the vehicle, when we heard cries and giggling from above the hill.. I turned to see this.. Some of the children from the village were running down the hill toward me.. They grabbed me and my wife round the legs and said "Zikomo... Zikomo.. Zikomo" over and again.. "Zikomo" means "thank you" in the local language.. I will never forget these children.. They have a piece of my heart.. Such joy when they have so little.. A real lesson in humility..

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Lover of truth @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

The light will shine and truth comes from the one source that they think they know but in name only. We have to keep praying for every person to see the light and follow it like the wise men when they were going to the baby Jesus. The truth isn't in the light but it shows the way to the light.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Lover of truth @Tim Conley @kathleen z 


Hello Tim.


For your information, I don't wear Christianity as a badge of honour, so what you think "True Christians" do or don't do is irrelevant to me. Get off your keyboard, stop preaching and actually do something to help some people, and I might start to believe that you have something worth listening to.


Your comment about pontificating, after expressing such a dogmatic point of view for so long, made me chuckle. Thank you for that.

Ono
Ono

@Lover of truth @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

Um Tim, you are reincarnating again. Oh wait, I think you had this moniker last year, or year before? So you are regressing. Did you forget, we already knew you as Lover of truth?


And Tim you are not trying to uphold the word of God. You are using the word of God to beat people over their heads with it. I hope that whatever causes you to behave in this dysfunctional manner, that you will eventually stop the self loathing, and find God's true love. I can tell you by experience, the joy of knowing God truly takes the bigotry, self loathing, and negative spirit away. I will keep praying for you that God sheds his light and love on you and that your journey will take you to a place where you tire of feeling this way and want to stop hurting yourself and others and that you will allow God to heal your spirit. I hope you will pray for this too.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

I make sure I am on the boat every morning. Praying for people, including myself, throughout the day while checking that I am living up to scriptural principals is all about getting on board. God's love abounds.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley 

Jobs lesson is a lesson for all. If it were possible to mess with Gods plan for someone elses life, then we would give up praying and caring. I find it feasible that the friends of Job would learn a lesson also and they were first in line to mess up Gods plan. If being in touch with God is to mean anything at all, it should mean that God would direct me in an alternate way than I am in now. I will try to detect that message from God in everything I do, hear and feel.

Remembering one time as a EMT, I had a patient that wanted me to stop what I was doing and if I had done as he would have wanted, he would most likely have bled to death.

The word ''all'' is inclusive, as it should be. The exclusive part is what happens when a person accepts Jesus' teaching and sacrifice with obedience. Any body is included if they want to be. The time, energy and academic brain power that has been expended on getting the Bible written in modern day words is amazing. I have been informed on most of the work that was put into the scriptures but my main focus is on the factor of God saying it the way He wanted it to be said. What I mean is how I trust God to make it clear in other ways if I get something wrong. But studying the whole Bible and accepting it completely is being faithful to the verse saying, "If I ask for bread, God would not give me a rock."

The testing of the spirits idea came from the Holy Spirit through one of the apostles, not me. It means to have assurance that whatever is guiding me is not my own desires nor a evil spirit, or something in between. I test the spirits by the standard of the scriptures, the written word of God. Also, is what I am hearing leading me closer to the living God, the creator of the world? Or is it making me more comfortable where I am at the moment?

Proof could be the opposite of faith. Proof could also be the necessary result of relying on Gods providence. Like when God leads, I follow and miracles happen that are only defined by Gods wisdom. Faith is believing because we can't see but we trust in Jesus and his life.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

It is entirely possible. I am not privy to Gods relationships nor do I make any pretense to inside info. Yes, God has many children but they still will be expected to follow edicts found in the Bible. You see, Gods Holy Spirit can be in touch with other people when they seek a relationship. There is likely to be truth in many forms but God doesn't cut any slack simply for lack of interest. Honesty about ones own condition is also required. At some point Jesus will be introduced and faced as leader and savior that he is. Love is always in the relationship but it isn't the worldly kind of love.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens

Hi Jon,


I wonder if in your time in Malawi you've had cause to work with these folks: http://malawiorphans.org/


My friend Charlie is the primary person on the U.S. end of the project and has been deeply involved for years. From what I can tell they are doing great work.


P.S. I would be happy to be in touch with you outside of this forum. Do you Facebook? (I try to spend as little time on there as I can, but it can be a useful tool for connecting)

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Lover of truth @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

Well I do wear Christ as a badge of honor. Faith in Jesus Christ is my shield. His word is my sword to divide truth from deception.

If you only had half as much wisdom as you think you do. Knowing how much time I spend on my keyboard is impossible for you.

My preaching is the result of Jesus being my Savior and so I want to spread the truth that He has bestowed through the love he lived, taught and still gives through the Holy Spirit.

Helping people is what I do constantly as they present a need. Justifying it with anyone would not be believed now as it hasn't in the past.

You listen to what ever makes you feel good.

Being called dogmatic is a step in the right direction. Thanks for the true tag.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @Lover of truth @Tim Conley @kathleen z 

If truth means anything to you, Lover of truth and I are two people who believe in the same God and Son, Jesus and the Holy Spirit. You are aware that more than one person can believe in truth at the same time. Right?

One can never pray for more light, or light for someone else, when we don't take advantage of the light one has already.

The consistency of this thread is that God loves us all unconditionally. However, if the reader reads words that they don't agree with, then that gives them license to defend oneself by attacking the truth.

I do pray for light and love, but the light I pray for is the light of the word of Jesus because that is where the love is. That is the only source.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens  Tim.... I've heard you speak so often about "I"..... What YOU do to ensure that YOU are the perfect Christian... Only God didn't make us perfect, you included.. What Kathleen and David.. And me, although I'm imperfect, so I'm beginning to give up on you... What we're trying to tell you is that God made us PERFECT as human beings.. You talk about feeling "Love" from a book, which suggests to me that you don't feel love from other human beings.. Maybe the book is your safety net. Maybe you have been hurt and need to find a way to ensure that you don't feel that pain again, but that's not Gods wish for you, not to feel pain again, but to not feel anything again.

This is what I'm feeling from your posts here.. A real lack of emotion.. How can you talk of love and separate this from emotion, love is the most powerful of all emotions, but your life seems devoid of it.

If I had one prayer, one request from God, it would be that you find the strength one day to allow yourself to feel. But then I suspect Gods response would be "I've shown him the door so often, I cannot make him enter, that's his choice.

Choose to feel Tim. Christianity isn't a mind game, an intellectual challenge, it's something you do every day, not by kneeling beside your bed and praying for all the lost souls, but by going out and helping the lost souls find themselves, and allow them to feel Gods love through your actions, not your words..

You know, on my travels I don't speak of God unless someone asks me. I cannot imagine a world without my faith, but I can imagine a world where people push me away in times of need because I spent my time "ministering" instead of offering people what they need.. They can find God through me if they choose..

One final thought Tim.. You're resistant to us for whatever reason. You act and behave as if we are beneath you. Imagine how that comes across to people who are less persistent than us.. Because that is not the way to lead people to God..

SwissJon
SwissJon

@DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley  Hi David

No, they're further north than I was, I was in Blantyre and further south. What your friend does seems very worthwhile, I might look in on them, as you can imagine, there are a lot of people running orphanages in Malawi, it's rife with HIV deaths, really terrible.

I first went to Malawi to get involved in the water program with my wife at Fishermans rest, http://www.fishermansrest.net/projects/water.html as we wanted to have a holiday doing something for others, and then happened across Kondanani http://www.kondanani.org/ and then my life changed (for the better) and I've been following my nose round the world doing whatever I can to make a difference, often one lead follows another, they haven't dried up so far.

The past year I've been mainly involved in educational projects, trying to bring education to people who have none. One of the undeniable truths that someone once said is "if you bring a man a fish he will eat for a day, teach a man to fish and he'll eat for the rest of his life.

So that's what I try to do. Bring education to people.. It's difficult to explain exactly what I do, because it changes, I tend to follow my nose and do whatever is needed from me, I'm rather lucky to have found a way to pay for this lifsttyle..

I try to keep Facebook for my direct family. As you can imagine, with all the travelling I do I need to keep in touch somehow, I've seen my wife for a total of 5 months so far this year, we're lucky to have a strong relationship that survives that, but I do need to be exclusive on Facebook, I used to spend so much time on it, and it's a real time killer when I'm really time poor. I'm trying to find another way to keep in touch with others who influence me, but so far I'm failing at that.. One day something will turn up.


If you get the chance to go and work with your friend Charlie, mention me in a comment on here, perhaps we can meet up somewhere. I assume you're in the US, unfortunately I doubt I'll be there, although my next lead take me to Mexico city at the end of November for 3 weeks before I FINALLY get to spend a few weeks with my wife and start writing..

Hey ho.. Life is a journey, I love this journey. Maybe when I get to the destination I'll be able to reflect on my failings and my inadequacies, but until then, I'll just follow the path that I'm on, because the smiling faces I find along the way make every day worth living, every discomfort, every mosquito or flea bite, the malaria, the tears, the friends that I have had to say goodbye to. The smiles are the things I carry with me in my heart, and those are the things that tell me I'm on the right path.. I encourage anyone to go out and find those smiles.. Go find your friend Charlie and help out.. You'll see what I mean.. It'll change your life :)

Ono
Ono

@Tim Conley @Ono @Lover of truth @kathleen z 

Not getting sucked in Tim. For one that is constantly yammering on about truth while getting caught showing your falsehood after falsehood, you will not convince me or anyone else who has watched you "preach" that you hold the truth. Your truth changes as much as you change your underwear. Whether you call yourself Lover of truth, Tim, or whatever your next new name will be, you still are spreading darkness, not light or love of God. You think love and God are in the pages of the bible, they are not. You would know that they are in your heart, if you had it in your heart. 


Sometimes I believe you may be mentally ill, Tim. Either that or you are playing a very wicked game which also is a form of mental illness. Whatever it is that you are doing, I will continue to pray that God helps you, because you really seem in need of some sort of help. I don't mean this to disparage you, but hope that someday you will find some peace with God and stop this. I will disengage now, as I don't want to feed your need for attention any further. Please, get some help. Seriously.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

Well, you hear wrong. I have said more than once that I am not perfect. If I were perfect, I would be sitting next to God. Realistically, perfection is a good goal but getting there is only possible with the intervention of Jesus.

We were not made perfect. I have had a lifelong medical condition. I would like to hear how you mean "we were made perfect". How is that possible?

I didn't say that I got love from any book. What I said was how the concept of love is presented in the written words of Jesus and God. What Gods plan is for everyone is the feelings we do have will have meaning and purpose. Pain is an inevitable part of life and God is the only source of wisdom to make any sense of it.

Love is an emotion but love is so much more than emotional. Love, as created by God, is action. Love is sacrifice for value of life itself.

I don't know for sure, maybe I feel more than others do. The issue is that I think and feel differently and for some people different is scary. Being different has to be defined.

All people are in the same situation unless and until it a person is responsive to Gods invite to study and accept the written word. Believe it or not, the power in Gods written word is life itself. Plus with the Holy Spirit guiding to the application of the word is supernatural.

Sometimes, as Jesus experienced, people in need only know what they want. Many times my needs turn out to be what I want and so praying and waiting on God to supply what I actually need is the key. I continue to pray that God makes me the servant to give to anyone in need, since I sure can't give them what they want.

If someone thinks of me being above them or anything but all of us on the same level then they don't know what God has said. What I try to do is Gods will and put others first. However, I can't put others first if my words are not comprehended, not understood. Since I think differently, speak differently and am different than what is expected then it follows that others stay where they are for the sake of being comfortable. To the extent possible, I follow in Jesus' footsteps as closely as I can and even Jesus did not win over everyone He talked to. Some people just couldn't accept the concept of a spiritual life meaning more than physical life. Same is true in this day and age. My prayer is for me to be humble and to let the light of Jesus shine through. If I have failed in this way, please accept my apologies. I will pray for more help from the Lord.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

I am probably guilty of missing many people and to that extent, I have to be more humble, more truthful, more wise in the way of the Lord. I am sure that I will improve as I mature in Gods wisdom, grace and mercy.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@SwissJon @DavidStevens @kathleen z @Tim Conley

Thank you for sharing a little glimpse of your beautiful work. I completely understand and respect your desire to keep Facebook as simple as possible.


I do hope to do some similar work in my life (insert self-absorbed, first-world excuse here). For now, my job in a publicly funded Emergency Department will have to suffice.


A friend of mine who is a Lakota Medicine Man once told me that an unconventional approach to life makes for great story telling around the fire with grandfather when this life is finished.


I will see you at the fireside, if not before.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @Tim Conley @Lover of truth @kathleen z 

For someone to not know the difference of truth or falsehood is not real encouraging. Pointing to the truth that Jesus taught and lived is not preaching or convincing. If you don't know how to detect truth then it's time to go back to basics. Truth, light and gospel are close to basic but maybe learning about what the sermon on the mount or the shepherds psalm are very basic.

It's not a problem if you want to believe I have a new name. I have no idea what the benefit to post under more than one name would be. At any rate, I welcome any person of wisdom.

Why would a fellow Christian say another believer is mentally ill? I have heard that and worse many times but never from a brother or sister in Christ. Why not respond to the truth rather than attack?

It is so hard to see one who does what they say is bad when another person does the same action. They say my action is bad because it goes against their game but they won't consider another ones' action could be true.

I get help everyday, but probably not the help you are meaning. The help I get is available to you and everyone.

Seriously.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens "We were not made perfect. I have had a lifelong medical condition. I would like to hear how you mean "we were made perfect". How is that possible?"


If you really need to ask this Tim, you have certainly missed ALL of God/Christ's teachings. We are all perfect in how God created us, warts and all, maybe we don't look that way to others but I guarantee we look that way, we are that way, to God.There is no imperfection with God, we are exactly the way he intended each of us to be.


And please don't misunderstand Tim, what we choose to do IS under our control. But haven't you ever heard of someone who became blind saying something like, "it wasn't until I became blind that I could see", or someone saying that their disease is a gift? That's because they are not seeing what society has deemed as imperfection or a disability but what God sees, his perfect children.  Their own personal journey, with their own personal lessons to be learned. 


I don't understand Tim, after all this time and all you've said, at least in this aspect, how you could ever think God created anything less than perfection in each of us. What we do or don't do has nothing to do with whether or not God created our perfection.

When it says "we all fall short of the glory of God", it is talking about what we chose to do, not how God created us.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens That's all we are asking Tim, to keep an open heart and to listen more closely with the two ears God gave you. Everyone, has something to teach, whether it is something we should or should not be doing, saying etc. doesn't matter it's still teaching. I know I have learned from you in ways that I didn't understand at first, but God kept pulling me back here for a reason, and so here I still sit. I've learned from everyone here. 


From Beau, Rob, David, SwissJon, Tiffany, Ono, Jerry, Ed who have shared words of wisdom, made me laugh, cry, who have filled my heart so many times. And my very special sister Traci, who I feel God sent this special angel to me because he knew I needed her so, I can't begin to explain all she has given to me, my heart. I am forever thankful, honored and humbled by each of these amazing people in my life, who I now call family, I love them ALL.


Even you Tim, I know God put you in my life for a reason, and I am humbled and honored and love you too.

I'll tell you what I tell my daughter, just because I may get angry at you or not like things you may have done doesn't mean I don't love you anymore. You have been a thorn in my side, on and off for over a year now. I just keep trying to remember that thorns are attached to beautiful roses, and they are all a part of God's garden.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley

Don't think that you need a world class excuse, you don't. Stay where you are, or travel like me, it makes no difference, it's the smiles that you bring to peoples faces just by being alive that make the difference.

In the end, I'm not doing this for anyone else.. My "work" isn't beautiful, I just do whatever I need to to make this world a nicer place every day.. But the people I meet every day are. People like you and Kathleen, who decide to find beauty and compassion in their daily life without going to the other side of the earth.. You're just as amazing as anyone. If we all just did one kindness for someone else without thinking "What do I get out of it? Will this get me to heaven?" If we simply do things for a smile or a thank you, even if the thank you remains unspoken or the smile is given on the inside, if we each do this thing, then the world will be a nicer place, and whether you believe in God, Jesus, Allah, Yahweh, or simply the human spirit, it makes no difference, we are all the same.


Hmm.. I remember walking past a Hindu shrine one day somewhere in South East Asia, I forget where, probably Bali, it had a swastika on the door and this attracted my attention as it reminded me of the time I was living in North London and I came home to find my Indian neighbour had a great many swastika's on their door, knocking on the door worried that some brainless neonazi had decided to make their life hell, they opened it and told me that it was they that painted it as a part of their religious ceremony to invite a Hindu god in, but they thanked me for my concern, and invited me to join their celebration.. Home cooked original Indian food is soooo much better than you can get in a restaurant.. Anyway, back to the door.. I was standing staring at it lost in my memories when the door opened and this short brown woman walked out. She saw me looking, and then spotted the ॐ symbol I wear round my neck. Om is the Hindu symbol that represents the thing that connects us all. I'm not Hindu, but I wear it as a way of finding connection with others, as was the case here. She walked up to me and invited me through her door. Inside was a beautiful garden temple. She turned to me and said "Hindu?" I said "Not really, me Buddhist Christian".. She pointed at my neck and said "Buddist, Christian, Hindu same"... Then she said something I've carried with me for a long time.. This short brown woman in her late sixties and grey hair and a few missing teeth smiled, looked up at me and said.. "You. Me. We same inside"... I looked at her, a complete stranger, and said "Yes.. Inside we the same" and gave her a hug..

I've met so many amazing people that have changed my life.. Each time I meet someone I carry a story about them with me.. I remember the first time I went to the United States, I was travelling from LA to Nappa Valley for work.. I got robbed in San Francisco and was feeling a bit fed up, so on the bus to Nappa I got chatting to the lady next to me, she was shocked that the first time I was in the US I had been robbed "We can't have that" she said, "that can't be your memory of our country" so she took me home to her place, introduced me to her family and made me food and gave up her bed so I could sleep comfortably for the first time in a long time. In the end, my lasting memory was of generosity and friendship, not of the robbery, but that lovely encounter..

One day David, one day we'll meet.. You'll recognise me, I'm the white dude with ॐ around his neck :)

Ono
Ono

@Tim Conley @Ono @Lover of truth @kathleen z 

It's not meant as an attack, it's out of concern that you need help. There is nothing wrong with having mental issues, I've had them myself and with professional help and God's help I overcame them. 

Get help.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

We were made perfect at the moment of creation. After sin entered into the world, is when the problem began.

There are few people that has zero medical issues for the first 60 years. Perfection in Gods view has to do with our soul and how we, as part of creation, respond to Gods wisdom and providence. Warts and all is part of the sin issue.

I don't know how you can say "we are exactly the way he intended each of us to be." when there are people with downs syndrome, MS, cerebral palsy to name a few. Speaking for myself and others that I have met, we are not the way God meant for us to be.

Yes, I agree, there are many ways to see, and hear, and feel and live. But the issue is to share with and care for others and still be in Gods will. As our journey goes, I see people that have been injured or need aid as I do from time to time. Please excuse me if I have different viewpoints and other definitions for words that make other people uncomfortable.

I know that your outlook on perfection means to you that whatever one does is up to them to make sense of. Our creator Lord and savior has said otherwise and when this goes contrary to ones life choices then it is time to change the meaning of words and look for loopholes. I mean, there must be hope in looking for viewpoints that agree with ours and saying that is what love looks like.

We all do in fact fall short of the glory of God. This has to do with what our choices are plus what is ones response to Jesus Christ. Ones choices can be counterproductive when we decide to follow Jesus, but only if one can name the terms. That, dear pilgrim, is not possible to work.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

Let me put this to you slightly differently to Kathleen. I was born with a hyperactive thyroid, which culminated in cancer of the Thyroid. This was resolved, thanks to the wonders of modern medicine, by killing off my thyroid rather than killing off me, and I'm left with resulting problems that I've learned to live with, because the alternative is unthinkable to me.. I'm not ready to leave this earth yet, God put me here, and I'm not going to sit around wasting that precious gift by lamenting that I wasn't born blonde blue eyes and perfect.. That was Hitler's vision, not God's.


 I was still born perfect as a human being, at the moment of my birth, God could have chosen to take me, but I'm still here. If I'd been taken back by God, then God would not have judged me, because I was innocent.. 

God does not judge me on my medical problems any more than my hair colour or my sexuality.. God judges me on my actions, or rather my intentions, because we can all have the same action, but if our intent behind that action may be different. That's the point Tim, our what we do, and why we do it is known only unto God, so how, as human beings, are we in a position to judge another human being?

I'll give you a fairly simple example.. You come across a purse in a shop. You pick it up, open it and look inside, it's empty. You put it down again. On the one hand your intent might have been to see whether the owners information was inside, on the other, whether there was any money.. The action was simple, it was the same, only the intent differed.

So taking this to same sex love.. Which is, after all, what this post is all about.. HOW do you know that someone who loves someone of the same sex has ANY different intention or feeling to someone who loves someone of the opposite sex? You aren't inside their head.. That's not our place to judge. If God judges a person on their intention, and the only difference between a gay person and a straight person is their action, not their intention, the only God can know whether we are worthy to enter the Kingdom of Heaven. As a Christion, it is ABSOLUTELY our duty to show every human being on this planet equal love and compassion.

I suggest that you read Kant.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

Open heart? For sure. Open mind? Not so much.

Everyone has something to teach, that is correct. However, if one listened to all that was being taught, it would be very little time until that one would be crazy trying to keep track of it and remember it. It's almost daily when what is reported is a retraction or other wise contrary to what was said previously. Not all doctors agree. Nor scientists. Nor any other experts. Now I find it good practice to filter it through the Bible. The Bible never changes. Translations might change. Idioms do change. One culture has precedent over another and then it reverses. The meaning of Gods word has never changed and that makes it a good filter to see the world as God sees it. My ears, eyes and feelings function as well as they have all my life except now, Gods appendages work better than mine do on my best days.

I have learned much also from postings here and other places, and my prayer would include that God would use my shortcomings to enhance and encourage other peoples lives. If I have any high points that make someones day closer to Jesus, I would celebrate and give glory to God in the highest. 

God Bless all who have read my words. 

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@SwissJon @DavidStevens @kathleen z @Tim Conley 


I look forward to that meeting. Here's something that happened recently:

I was out for a jog with my girls (9 and 12). Sometimes they are into it, sometimes not. This was mostly a "not" day. About 6 or 8 blocks from home, as we crossed the street, a guy waiting for the bus said, "You'll kill your knees in the long run!"

I was pretty angry. I'm trying to instill good habits in my girls, and this random fellow decided to torpedo that. I stopped to tell him so. I tried to keep my voice calm, but let him know clearly that I didn’t appreciate his words. Unfortunately, the conversation quickly became heated, and he started calling me names like, “mother-earth loving, Birkenstock wearing…” (which is pretty funny, since I cut off my long hair a couple of years ago and have no idea what he was basing this on). I felt my own blood rising, and it about popped when he said, “I’ll bust you up.”

Here’s the thing: I’ve been practicing martial arts for several years now. I earned my brown belt last year and will likely test for black in 2015. I have been in zero fights (my last fight was in the 5th grade) and there is, admittedly, a part of me that wants to test my skills for real. When this guy threatened me, that part of me was saying, “PLEASE, throw the first punch, give me an excuse.” Or, “Go ahead, make my day.”

Luckily, the larger lessons of the martial arts training kicked in. I looked this man in the face and said, “Are you okay, bro?” He angrily told me (and I sensed that tears were not far behind his voice) that this was none of my business. I repeated, “No, seriously, are you okay, bro?”

I don’t remember the precise course of the conversation from there, but things quickly de-escalated, and he apologized, saying that he shouldn’t have said what he said, and he told me to “go run with your kids.” We shook hands and exchanged first names. I told him I hoped that he had a good day, and (as if to confirm his assessment of my hippie status) I touched my heart and told him, “Namaste.”

I felt the Lord’s presence in that exchange. He touched my heart and helped me to touch this other man’s heart. Through His help, I attempted to inoculate this man with love. For the moment, at least, I think it worked. I hope a seed was planted that will grow. I am grateful to the masters who came before me whose trainings helped me to be ready to meet that man and pierce his shell.

He is always there, offering His help. It is up to us to accept the offer.

Thank you for the reminder, Brother Jon.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @Tim Conley @Lover of truth @kathleen z 

It's not me that you are attacking when the truth is regarded as a falsehood. I am safe in Jesus Christ and I am protected from all, that is ALL, forms of evil.

If I did have mental issues and Jesus didn't heal me by some means, then I would still know the truth and love of Jesus.

Help is living in and with me, also leading and sustaining my life now and throughout eternity.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens 


"I don't know how you can say "we are exactly the way he intended each of us to be." when there are people with downs syndrome, MS, cerebral palsy to name a few."

So you're saying God makes mistakes?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

God knows and is the only one who knows intent. That is true unless the intent produces words or actions. I don't judge anyone and that is not my intent here. Are you always aware of your true intentions? If you are then you are more aware than anyone I have ever known. As far as anyone can make sense of ones psyche and mental condition, it is wishing and hoping on a star to believe your intentions are not judged by others throughout the day. Only God is in control of any life situations and then only if God is invited.

Hair color and sexuality? Do you see any degree in importance? Especially when it has to do with ones being as a mortal or a spiritual being.

Love in the way God made it to happen is the only love that is blessed by God. I don't have to be inside anyones head to know how God created mankind. All the prayers from all the saints that have existed in the world would not make God go against His creation. I know my intention is to live with Gods will and within His plan for life. I have looked all the way through scriptures, which is Gods ultimate and only plan, and it is clear that God made one way for us to live and any other way is rebellion.

I have great respect for other beliefs and other lifestyles, as long as it is not contrary to Gods plan. Showing them love, compassion and respect is the right thing to do. But what I can't do is change the meaning of words as defined in the Bible.

I would read Kant, if I had a good reason to do so.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley 

What a nice experience. :)


Remember that hippy you carry within you.. Don't let the disciplines of martial arts cause you to lose touch with that side of you, ying and yang, everything in balance..


I'm far from being a monk, but I'll be your brother any day :)


Namaste.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

No, definitely not. God does not make any mistakes.

Any disease or medical condition is the result of sin in the past, either near or far but at some time the DNA was damaged. The main thing now is to give any problem back to Jesus and the "mistake" or burden will be taken care of. 

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens  "That is true unless the intent produces words or actions." "Are you always aware of your true intentions? If you are then you are more aware than anyone I have ever known" If you can't know what your intentions are, how can anyone else? As I described, outside actions are not a display of inner intent. As humans, we judge people on actions, their outer life, because we cannot see peoples intent, their inner life except what they choose to show us (whether or not it is true, you cannot know). God can, so God is the only one fit to judge one anyone.

"Showing them love, compassion and respect is the right thing to do. But what I can't do is change the meaning of words as defined in the Bible."


The word "Love" has many meanings to many people. If you take the bible out of the human context, you're going to lose the true meaning Tim, and that's what you are doing, losing touch with humanity, and all of Gods beautiful creation.


Saints weren't Saints because they adhered to every word in the bible, they were saints because they led exemplary lives of love, humility and compassion toward their fellow human beings..


Lord, I've tried, he's just refusing to listen. Help me please. 

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

"Any disease or medical condition is the result of sin in the past, either near or far but at some time the DNA was damaged."

So I'm born imperfect because of the sins of my great grandparents, and great great grandparents and so on, all the way back to cave men? At what point does God get a look in here Tim? You know the ALMIGHTY? The omnipotent one? Could, and should, God not make each human perfect in his own image at the time of their birth? Or maybe, just maybe, God does, but on the inside, where it counts.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens SwissJon, I ask the same question, " Lord, I've tried, he's just refusing to listen. Help me please."


I've asked for his guidance throughout this blog, most times I listen to the guidance he gives, and I admit at times I've not listened, those times I was angry and just wanted to say it my way. But the good percentage of times I've listened and been guided by God in my responses. This last time, when I sat down and waited for God's guidance, his answer to me was, " You've done all you can, this is bigger than you, I'll take it from here".

Now I know that may sound crazy, but each and every time I've sat down to respond to something or someone, I've gotten my responses from God, (even when I disregarded what he has given me, he still gave it), so I'm kind of taking a back sit for the time being.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I have had the Holy Spirit show me what the intent of another person is.

Not so about the meaning of "love" or many other words. Remember God is Holy and righteous, hence the meanings of words will be from His perspective, not ours. God will keep me in touch with His creation in any way necessary. A Saint is who they are for their connection with God and those attributes are useless without Gods blessings.

If you want me to believe your words then you need to produce some credentials or the source of your words. It could be that it is you trying and some of your ideas are skewed, contorted from what they should be.

If you want to make the impression that you seem to think that you have made, if you want your words to have the impact that you want them to, the source will have to be the living God, the creator of the world.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

That is a good synopsis.

"At what point does God get a look in here Tim? You know the ALMIGHTY? The omnipotent one?" Not only did God make the world perfect at the beginning, but God made the world carefree. Adam and Eve didn't have a care in the world. Everything changed after the fall from grace. From that point till this, it has been a down hill disaster.

Although God does make each soul perfect to begin life, it is a very short time till Jesus needs to intercede and make it possible for that soul to be in touch with God again. God does not make each baby perfect and except for the mercy of God, nobody would be in touch with God.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens  The truth is Kathleen, maybe God IS working through Tim, just not the way he's expecting it.

Think about this. As a result of Tim's stubbornness to admit that he may be being misled in his search for the truth, you, me, David, and a few others have been given an opportunity to examine and share our faiths. We've looked deeply inside ourselves and heard that small voice when we've asked "Lord, is the truth that I really on the wrong path? Or am I following the path that I'm meant" 

No matter what Tim's approach to his understanding of Gods word. I think the reality here is that by Tim's point of view coming into contention with our own faith, we have the opportunity to affirm those beliefs.


That I take as a gift. I'm exhausted by the brick wall that Tim surrounds himself with. He changes the meaning of the words he uses to prevent any chance that someone may get in and ask the question that is really on my mind, which is basically, why he feels the need to cut himself off from humanity in order to meet God. If you look at the stories of Jesus, at no point did he build walls around him to keep people away, he welcomed those who were lost.


At this point, I think the "frustration" I have had with Tim has just turned into a sad resignation that sometimes you have to let things go. I'm sure that we have done what God has asked of us, and stood proud for those things we believe, now it's time to let go.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

"A Saint is who they are for their connection with God and those attributes are useless without Gods blessings."


What do you mean by this Tim? Because last time I checked it was the catholic church that decided who was or was not made a saint.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens Thanks Tim, but I take my guidance directly from the source. I've already explained that I don't use scripture as the "be all, end all", it is the inspired word of God, written, compiled, interpreted, translated by man with all of his flaws, bias, etc., 

as well intentioned as I'm sure it was, it's still made by man.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens Exactly SwissJon,

This is what I meant when I said I learned from Tim. I wasn't specific about what I learned, but as you said it has confirmed that I am on the path I am meant to be on.


And your point about the frustration is exactly how I've felt as well, and why I feel like God said he'll take it from here. I'm sure if the opportunity presents itself, where God feels there is something we should or could say in the future, he'll let us know.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

What is so difficult about looking at ALL of scripture for the answer that applies.

It isn't about you nor me being stubborn. It is about life as God intended. If you want to keep it as a personal issue, that is your choice. I choose to make it as reality directed towards God and accept what God's message is in response, by way of scripture, to our needs

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

Best check with the Bible. The Catholic church decides who is a saint in their church. They are likely to be a saint for attending regularly, if the trend keeps going at the same trajectory as in the past.  I have met people in different churches that are only there because someone married them if they joined.

A person is admitted into heaven by their acceptance of Jesus Christ and obeying His teachings.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

The guidance of the Lord is going on every day that we are ready for it. The actual import of leading by real moving in ones senses is not as often but it is real. It makes every minute into a decision moment. It's not to be taken lightly nor is it to be taken for granted simply because I think that I need or deserve it because I have been searching the scriptures for guidance. God is much more capable of detecting ones sincerity or honesty than any mortal is. I believe God only gives us a fraction of a fraction of what He knows. If only I were deserving enough to receive wisdom or power from the only living righteous God. God gives it to me anyways because of my reverence and acknowledgement of His real sovereign perfection in all of His doings. That is called grace.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

That's your take on the Bible and if your belief gives you what you need then what can I say.

It doesn't change what the Bible is. Plus there is no other source of wisdom that is comparable nor unabridged.

The Bible, even if it was only man made, has been an inspiration to me. It is also the only source book on the next life and that is the most important part of this present life.

Best regards on finding a better path.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z Again Tim I believe this is where you have it backwards...... "God gives it to me anyways because of my reverence and acknowledgement of His real sovereign perfection in all of His doings. That is called grace."


God gave you and showed you his grace FIRST and that is what lead you to him. Something happened in your life (before you were following), you saw, felt, knew the grace God was offering and you accepted it. You just think you are receiving his grace because of all your acknowledging, but it's really just that you have accepted it and are aware of it now. And I'm not saying you shouldn't be acknowledging God now.  God gives his grace, it's only a matter of whether people are paying attention, and want to accept it.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I could have included the whole of the bible, but this verse tells you everything I think you're missing from your faith, that perhaps you need to learn BEFORE you decide to spread Gods word...

"Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience"

To answer your previous question. "What is so difficult about looking at ALL of scripture for the answer that applies.

It isn't about you nor me being stubborn. It is about life as God intended. If you want to keep it as a personal issue, that is your choice. I choose to make it as reality directed towards God and accept what God's message is in response, by way of scripture, to our needs"


Because that is NOT what Jesus did. You made an assumption a long while back that Jesus spent his formative years studying the Torah, but there is no reliable source that verifies this assumption, Joseph, the father of Jesus, was a carpenter, it seems highly likely that Jesus spent his formative years studying the trade. Jesus spent the documented years with people, listening to them, talking in parables so that people could understand what God wanted from them. But you've missed that.

The problem with the way you approach people is that you don't listen, you talk. You talk about rules, Jesus talked in parables about understandings. You pray without action, Jesus acted and that was his prayer.

If you want to know and understand how to live your life, don't ask "What does the Bible say?" because you ignore the real truths that Jesus tried to tell you (John 18:9-14 comes to mind). I live my life as best I can by trying to do as I believe Jesus would. I'm not perfect. Not by a long shot, but I do my best. I don't live my life by the word of the Bible, I live my life by the meaning of the bible, I try (and fail regularly) to be all of those things in Colossians 3:12.


kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens You are correct Tim, it doesn't change what the bible is, a book made by man, as the inspired word of God, which can be very inspirational.


And when I say I go right to the source, I speak with God directly when I have questions, or I'm scared, worried, happy, sad, confused, .....all of it, that includes the next life. 


And thank you for the regards as to finding a better path, found it, and have gotten the "a-ok" from God, who skips happily with me along my path.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens Thank you SwissJon, it does reassure me that I am not alone on this path.  And what I've found is the company I have on this path is a truly unique, inspiring group of loving, compassionate people who are more Christ like than the majority of devout christians I know. So thank you again for the awe inspiring company!

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

Good question. The main thing is, does my decision draw me closer to God or does it make my life easier? One big factor to keep in mind is that I have to give up any gratification. If I get more knowledge of what God is really like and who God wants me to be, what He wants me to be like. If my life is to be what God wants then the Holy Spirit guides me to read particular scriptures and how to apply them in the world that I know of. Sometimes I read pages of scriptures, mainly because it is so interesting. Inevitably, one or two verses will stand out more than the others. Then these two verses might be reread with other verses that then make a whole new application and an answer to some need of someone, maybe someone that I wasn't directly aware of previously. This is only one scenario. It varies each and every day or each time.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

Jesus didn't study much of word because Jesus IS the word. Remember, at the age of 12 his parents found him teaching the learned teachers in the synagogue. Jesus listened to people only to the extent they were seeking the truth.

You assume I don't listen to people. You have no clue what I do. The one thing you do know is that I don't listen to you. I listen to anyone who shows they got their wisdom from scripture.

You probably meant to quote Luke 18:9-14. That fits more to the context you were saying. When I pray, I pray more along the lines of the Lord's prayer. Then I ask God for more specific answers or direction. We don't have to agree with each other but it is important to agree with Jesus's word. If one lives their life by the meaning of ANYTHING, that is more like relativism than any teaching of Jesus. The meaning of what one reads is really important but where does the meaning come from? I live by the meaning also but the meaning I am referring to is the Word of Jesus in context with ALL of the Bible.

I will keep trying to encourage you and others to take in the whole word rather than only the part that makes me feel good. I hope and pray God direct you and others to encourage me also, since we are all mortals, all equal in the sight of God. The only difference is those who accept Jesus as their savior and obey His word. Not the meaning of His word but as close to His teaching as He would have taught us by being in His presence when He was walking amongst us.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

Enjoy. Enjoy to the max.

You have definitely reached some sort of nirvana.

If it is in reality God who is approving and walking with you, even skipping along with you, at some point this living, righteous Holy God will try to communicate as maturity continues. He will communicate many truths that are already written and the security will increase beyond what is assumed to be the max blessings currently.

All this will transpire except if God treats some people differently. Actually many people I have known over the years have accepted what you have as the ultimate in God's divine guidance and they have lived their whole lives that way. They are happy most of the time, so again, as I tell them, ENJOY.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens @SwissJon Well unless I misunderstood you, you said God gave you his grace once you started acknowledging and showing reverence to him. I say God gives his grace first, someone sees, feels, hears it ( and God may have offered it many times before someone sees it as God's grace) and that is how or why the reverence and acknowledgement come in, once the person realizes it is God's grace it changes who they are.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens  Actually Tim, my assumption has been based on the last many months I've been trying to convince you to pull your head out from the bible long enough to appreciate the beauty of Gods work. My assumptions are based on the "Tim" you have chosen to share with us. If that is not the reality of your life, then take off this false persona and share the real you. You may find that person does not meet so much resistance as that person may well be more meek and humble than the one you choose to be here.. Don't blame me for my assumptions, look to yourself and question why I have made them, each of your comments are not in isolation.


Yes, I meant Luke, not John.

Tim, I don't care if you agree with me, but I simply don't think you are doing as you tell others to do. You pick and choose bible verses and ignore others, by doing so, you contradict yourself regularly. You are hoping and praying that God will direct me and the others to encourage you to follow this path, but have you considered whether you are actually on the path that God wants you to follow, and that maybe those of us that persist with you are trying to guide you onto the path you were meant to follow?  

As I said to you many months ago, if you want to live purely by Gods word, put down your bible, give away your computer and go out into the world humbly as a servant of God. I have walked into a village in Malawi where the only thing of value in the village was the very large silver cross.. The children were dressed in rags, they did not have regular food and the nearest water was 6 hours away, yet they were able to bow down before an ornate cross. Given the weight of it, if the church had thought about it, the cost of building a well for these people would have been less than the value of the cross, yet it took me and some others to look at these peoples needs.. What the church brought to the village was religion, not Christianity. For 30 years the Church provided bibles for the villagers without seeing to their needs for food and clean water. That is not what I believe is what Christ wanted from his church, but it's what you are condoning.. So I can't agree with you. While there are people starving in this world, and while Christian churches fill themselves with finery and gold and pat themselves on the back for being "good Christians" because they read the bible, I will turn my back on the church and the bible, and follow the path God is leading me down, to fulfil peoples needs, and when the needs are met, perhaps people will be willing to listen to Gods word in its entirety.. Stop forcing the bible down peoples throats while there are people who don't have enough food or water.. Be a christian, not a Christian.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens I'll give you a small example of what I mean. 


I am an animal lover, activist etc. I have had too many animals many times, because I feel like I have to save them all. 

When my (last of many) cat past away a few years ago, I decided I was not going to get more cats, (I still have two dogs, and various other small animals). Well recently one of my husband's customers had a guinea pig they wanted to give away and our daughter had asked for one so we were considering it. On the day we were suppose to contact the customer and say we'd take it, a stray cat I've been trying to befriend so I could feed and get sprayed or neutered was outside my bathroom window. I watched where she went and saw she had already had kittens, (watched them come out of their hiding spot). At that very moment God spoke to me, he said, " you aren't going to take the guinea pig, which has a safe home, and I know you didn't want more cats, but you need to go and get these kittens, NOW". 


So now we have kittens. They are adorable, loving, so very young and had been filled with fleas, so many in fact they more than likely would have died had we not scooped them up. And the really strange thing was, (for whatever reason), God wanted me to have these two kittens, even though there were three. I couldn't catch the third one and I've tried many times,( even tracked the new spot the mama moved this kitten to), but these two just sat there. They didn't move a muscle and let me pick them up, stick them under warm running water (to bathe and get the fleas off) all without a sound, scratch or wiggle. 


This is just one of the ways God speaks to me everyday, in every way, I'm just thankful I was listening and paying attention.


BTW, my daughter named them, Cupcake and Frosting, LOL, and they truly are sweet!

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens I haven't reached some sort of nirvana, it's just real life, with all it's wonders and warts.


And God doesn't try to communicate with me, he already does, every day, in every way!


I have been to many different churches, I have, ( and still do) read the bible, but in all of that, over the course of my many years, I would be left feeling empty, hurting, like something was missing (not with all of it, but with more of it than it should be). 


I never feel that way when I go directly to Christ, I never feel hurt, confused, empty or like something is missing, because it isn't. That isn't nirvana to me, it just is. It does give me a peace because I am safe in Christ, even when the hard times of life are surrounding me. I still feel the pain and hurt of life, but I know I will always find peace, love and comfort in Christ loving arms, and he will be right there by my side whether I'm skipping today or barely able to carry myself, he never leaves me.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon 

We are both right on this issue.

You are saying grace is presented first and I said acknowledging grace is first. So God seen what I needed was grace and after I recognized God's grace, my first act was acknowledgment and worship. So there is two "firsts" and of course I would not have acknowledged anything that wasn't there or that I didn't see.

Thanks for the chance to make it clear, at least in my own mind.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

It happens just as it does with anyone else that desires to have a relationship with another person. They are constantly in touch with each other by any means possible. For me, I can't get enough of God or his love. That is the way others find out about my relationship with God, since it keeps growing and blossoming then others are going to hear about it. Of course, just like any other relationship, if they are not privy enough, or willing to spend the time and energy to find out, then that relationship will seem odd and maybe even weird. It's too strange for anyone who is on the outside looking in but I will keep trying to show and share Gods love. Anyway, there is no other relationship like the one with our heavenly Father. I intend to tell everyone about it in any way I can.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens This is it exactly! Too worried about words in a book that they forget about the very people who need less of the words and more of the actions of Christ, the words are shown, proven and exemplified through those actions.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I have related many times where I have ministered to people in my community and beyond, as the need and ability come together. I am not going to play volleyball with the ministering part of being a Christian. We all have our cross to bear and we do our part to show the love of Jesus.

Please show where I have forced my ideas or myself on anyone, at anytime.

As to the listening issue, I listen to many sources and resources. One never knows where, when or how God's next directive or lesson will happen. What I do know for certain is God's word is ALWAYS paramount. God will never go against His word and to the extent people have directed in error, I choose to go with God's word.

I commend you for any work you have done on Jesus's behalf. It doesn't mean the cross was necessarily wrong. It really is confusing how someone can say some work or a effort on someone else's part is or is not Christian, but when another person says words that are against you then that is judging. And we all have heard how it is wrong to judge.

My intent is to point to a better way as Jesus taught and I am accused of judging. If you want to show how I have judged, I am listening.

I do agree with your assessment of the value in capital would be better used elsewhere. In water or food supplies would be much better. However, is it clear who decided to put up the valuable cross? If it was the church and that is their whole impact on those people, I would agree with you, that capital expense was not the best way to go. But if it was the local congregation that chose and paid for it, then its a whole different picture.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

It is great that you can have peace, love and comfort. I don't get how all of that resolves the pain and hurt or insecurity that is part of life. You don't say anything about the truth.

What did Jesus Christ say about the truth?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

That sounds like almost everyone in the world could have said what you just said. Except maybe doctors and nurses training to fix peoples physical bodies, or pilots training to fly planes weighing hundreds of tons and hundreds of people on board. Yes, they get their relevance skills and their value by action in the real world. However, they start with reading books, studying books and listening to others talk about books. And they if they want to keep current with technology they go back to the books that are updated. But the real laws of physics that technology is based on never change.

Spiritual laws are very much the same. The biggest difference is the consequences of listening to the author of the laws will be more in the spiritual book than in the physical books.

I wouldn't trust any one who hadn't been well versed in appropriate books. I wouldn't trust my car to someone that says they get the work done by instinct or feeling really good about putting that engine together. I can't imagine trusting someone's actions if I detect that they don't hold to the truth in the highest regard.

But I still encourage you to enjoy your nirvana, if you can.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z @DavidStevens  Ministry on its own is irrelevant Tim, as it does nothing for the people who need help from desperate circumstances.. Volleyball?? I'm out there digging holes in the dirt and caring for orphans whose parents died from HIV and you come up with "volleyball" as an alternative to ministry.. But let's look at this sensibly.. WHY wouldn't you play volleyball with people if they need that to be able find God? Are you really above that? Really..

Where exactly did I say "forced" Tim?


You know, I don't go travelling the world trying to do things "On Jesus behalf".. I don't. I'm very fortunate to be able to do these things, and I'm a Christian BECAUSE I do these things, I don't do these things because I'm a Christian. And if you think it's "judging" someone because they think a silver cross is more important than food and water to starving people, then I think I can live with that. Remember Jesus fed people before ministering to them, he took care of their physical needs before their spiritual, if you've never seen a child waste away or cry without tears because they're so dehydrated, then you're fortunate, but you can't eat silver crosses.


Fairly regularly people have pointed out how you judge others, you didn't hear them then, I'm not about to go back and dig them out, because you won't hear me this time either..

I've done my best with you, but this thread has become about "Tim", and lost focus..


Lord, I've seen your children cry and comforted them, I've held the hands of lonely dying people as they left this place to join you.. I've put food and water into the mouths of those who you showed me needed it, each time you've thrown me a challenge, I've gratefully accepted it, but there are some challenges that are too much for me.. To try to convince someone who thinks that Christianity is an intellectual challenge, to walk in your footsteps and reach out to the needy and helpless with something real and tangible, that's beyond me, I'm sorry.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

 It resolves the pain, hurt or insecurity of real life through Christ, he offers me comfort, peace, love, understanding and has completely blessed me with all my family and friends that help with all life has to give, the good and bad.


kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens 


   Well that is true with books about nursing, pilots learning to fly, car repair etc. because those books are based on science, facts, that are scientifically proven, the bible is not. We have already "proven" how parts of the bible have been misinterpreted, mistranslated etc., but beyond that, it is based on faith, so your analogy is lacking. Faith is faith, it doesn't need proving except in personal ways for each individual. The proof is for the person not for the benefit of those around that person, and that is not to say that others don't share that same faith, but again each is a very personal thing. My proof of my faith is completely personal to me, you don't share that same personal faith because my experience is mine and mine alone.


 I could try to explain it to you but it wouldn't do justice to my experience. You would be able to relate but never to fully understand MY experience, because it is mine. The same way I can relate to your faith, I cannot fully understand because it is YOUR experience, completely unique and personal to you.


   And as I stated before, I don't have nirvana I have real life, with all of the good and bad that comes from living a real life.  Please stop calling it nirvana, do you even know the definition? When you say it I assume you are referring to #3, and I am not oblivious to pain, worry or the external world, I just have Christ to comfort, offer peace and understanding, and really good, loving family and friends to support and help me through it.


       Here is the definition; nirvana [nir-vah-nuh, -van-uh, ner-] Spell Syllablesnoun1.(often initial capital letter). Pali nibbana. Buddhism. freedom fromthe endless cycle of personal reincarnations, with their consequentsuffering, as a result of the extinction of individual passion, hatred,and delusion: attained by the Arhat as his goal but postponed by theBodhisattva.
2.(often initial capital letter) Hinduism. salvation through the union ofAtman with Brahma; moksha.
3.a place or state characterized by freedom from or oblivion to pain,worry, and the external world.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I said ministry volley ball. As in the competiveness of each of our own ministry to the world. Suffice it to say I am not able to travel but I do give to my community. Everybody has a cross to carry and in our own way the Lord provides connections of people in need and other people that give.

I don't see how doing these things makes one a Christian. The thing that makes me a Christian is following Christ and obeying His commandments.

Judging the cross as opposed to the money being provided to the people is like me being accused of judging others for reasons that baffle me. My "judging" was simply stating the truth as Jesus said it. My offense might have been restating those principles and commandments in my own words, but I didn't change the reason Jesus said those words. If any one judged, it was others judging me because they didn't like to be reminded of the commandments or principles.

Of course one can't eat silver crosses, but if the cross was put there by local people then that is their choice. The suffering of a child by dehydration, or for any suffering, is not God's will and you are to be commended for remedying that.

If this thread has become about "Tim", whose fault is that? I have repeatedly brought the topic back to what Jesus said.

If this is an intellectual challenge then I am really sorry and I apologize. I keep responding to questions in a Biblical manner. Jesus Christ is continually at the fore front of any of my comments. I have to keep it simple since that is what I am, SIMPLE. I don't have any more intellectual skills than the next person.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

The Bible may have proven to be unreliable and man made to you, I find wisdom and truth. No where else can anyone find the love, security, peace, hope, truth and wisdom. My analogy is not lacking. All the "science" books are not all based on scientific anything. Yes, they do have more current presentations, those presentations are what works in the real world as it is with the Bible. You can't disprove the Bible by the statement of it being personal. The truths in the Bible are eternal, never fails if one wants an answer to life's issues. The Holy Spirit can make it personal by applying a verse as it is needed.

Agreed, faith doesn't have to be proven. Faith is tested and made into a truth by how it is used. Some people have used faith as the last resort, never to be taken serious except when nothing else works. Other people don't waste any time or energy because they rely on their faith in Jesus as above all other wisdom.

One's experience is one important aspect, no doubt. However, experience is like memory and both can fluctuate to match whatever one wants it to be.

Many definitions from various religions have been adapted into modern language when the use is not pertaining to original applications. Nirvana is used by many people to mean a mind state that is optimum but not necessarily connected to reality.

Again, it is important what Jesus declared truth to be. If you don't wish to respond, that's ok.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens  You know Kathleen, that first sentence could be expanded thus..

A doctor or pilot can only learn "theory" from books. It's only by practice that they find that they need to adapt and extrapolate in order to manage the real life situations. In fact, someone who only knows theory from books, but has no experience or practice in real life under the guidance of someone who has walked that same path many times before could not pass the end exams and check out as either a doctor or a pilot because they would be dangerous. 

The same could be said of someone who lives their life by the word in the bible and refuses to adapt it to life as it appears 2000 years later. there are roughly 800,000 words in the Old and New testament put together. There are 7Billion of us on this planet. Those 800,000 can't possibly apply literally to all 7,000,000,000 of us in all our different circumstance unless you are willing to concede that some of what is being said is meant as guidance or metaphorically, rather than literally, and one should NEVER expound the Bible until one has had a chance to experience the real hardships that so many millions experience on a day by day basis and tried to help them improve their lives. Only when you can see how God works in real lives should you begin to comment on how the Bible should be employed, and perhaps then you won't, you'll simply employ it and let your actions do the talking.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

I totally agree with the experience being included with theory. In fact, some colleges issue degrees upon being presented proof of experience that meets or exceeds course requirements. When it is clear that someone navigates the subject matter then that person is given credibility.

As for the other part of the post, I have not idea why the number of words or the number of people are such a big deal. It would make more sense to look at details, not about generalities. For sure God's work in real lives makes the biggest change and improvements. It doesn't take any expert to find truth in God's word and experience the Holy Spirit. After all that is what the Bible is all about. God intends for us to have a joyous life and that can only happen one on one with Jesus Christ leading the way.

My comments are an invite to find what I have found in Jesus Christ. That's all. Very simple. Truth is simple and reassuring.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

I agree completely SwissJon. 


  My son is an RN,BSN,CCRN,SRNA and currently back in college at SUNY Downstate at Brooklyn Medical Center for his masters degree to be a nurse anesthetist. And although his course load is huge and with all that entails,  one of the biggest parts of his study is his clinical work, his actual doing, under the supervision of an anesthesiologist.


In response to Tim;

   I didn't disprove the bible by making it personal, I said it is not a provable thing, but that, as a matter of fact, parts have been proven to be mistranslated, misinterpreted and so forth.


  What you said here, "All the science books aren't based on scientific anything", really Tim?  What would they be based on?  Can you please explain that since you are the who brought up using science and the laws of physics, and in talking about nursing, pilots etc., all based on science. 


And to answer your question Tim, Jesus said He was the truth, the way and the light.





 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @SwissJon @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

Mistranslated and misinterpreted has not been proven in any significant way. That is unless you want to not believe it anyway, especially where it is important.

Most if not all of the science books in schools have evolution which is nothing but total faith based. But that faith is based on wishful thinking. There is no basis for evolution in the creation of life. It is all supposition with little or no evidence. Sometimes they have a theory that has no evidence nor science to back it up.

My initial comment on using books to rely on for truth meant they have to continuously update them and it is not always for technology. Sometimes it is for changing practices that have been changed by administrative or bureaucratic decisions. The point intended compared what has stood the test of time and which to rely on for truths of life, even when the scope of topics are considered. I still wouldn't trust any expert to operate in my sphere if they are not current with the latest book. In the case of the Bible, it would be a miracle of bringing together 44 authors writing and/or transcribing all the writings that span over 2 thousands years with only a few errors and none that are material to the text.

Jesus claimed to be more than those essences. To focus on why I keep the truth at the forefront of my postings it is because Jesus said knowing the truth will set the seeker free. My belief is that most people would like to be free. So when my talk about the truth is offensive and hurtful, the result is to be free. Free from all kinds of shackles. Free from lies and injuries put on us by Jesus's enemy. Of course everyone is free to reject the truth and free to remain a prisoner of the worlds influence.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens I'm sorry that is just blatantly wrong. Science backs up everything. No evidence for anything? They have nothing but evidence! I don't know where you went to school or what you read but science is exactly about facts, it is not faith based. 


And there are tons of examples of how the bible has been mistranslated or misinterpreted, one we just touched on, how the catholic church interpreted "saints" from what is said in the bible, another is how the jewish use the singular to mean all of them, one nation, but christians interpreted it to be singular, one person. The word homosexual did not appear in any english bible before 1946. Those are just a few things, there are many and to say that none of them are material to the text is just you not accepting truth.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@DavidStevens @kathleen z @SwissJon @Tim Conley 

He loves it! He is doing an accelerated program, 27 months straight through, no semesters or monthly breaks. Of course he basically gave up what was his normal life. He had to stop working, ( he saved for a year before going into the program), and it only chose 12 new candidates for each new class so he wasn't even sure if he'd get in when he started saving, he had to move, but he thrives on it. He is a heavy duty type A personality, LOL. I believe that is why he went with this program.


But in any case he loves it, is excelling and is where he is meant to be. You sound very much like my son to me, you should check into it. I believe my son said there is a shortage of nurse anethestists.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@BeauJackson @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

That may seem to be true. However, if those were the only two steps to this journey then why did Jesus say to keep ALL of His commandments? And "if you love me you will keep all of my commandments". It is way more than two different authors writing what they remember.

The real truth is there is no end to Jesus' love and no end to the journey with Him.

The belief that Jesus would have only two steps (or even any limit to how many steps) is rather absurd. In fact the this start of a journey with my Lord will continue throughout eternity.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

What is science's evidence for evolution? Where do they say life began?

Global cooling? Global warming? Global climate change should cover everything according to their computer models and 97% of scientists. However something isn't working according to plan.

The catholic church doesn't speak for me nor half the Christians. The Mormons misinterpreted/mistranslated also. Whenever someone has an agenda and a particular form to fill then that can't be counted for a Christian seeking the truth.

That is what I am talking about, anyone who wants the truth can find it in the Bible and no where else.

Jews use the singular to mean one nation? They are one nation. Christians can be anyone, from anywhere.

So what if the word "homosexual" doesn't appear before 1946? What is the point? If one is seeking the truth then that word is antithetical.

Those are a few things that are for anyone who doesn't want to know God's will because all the things you mentioned are of mans concern, not God's. God has no interest in naming saints, nor what Jews do as a nation as long as it fits His plan. The truth the way the world sees it is not material to God's plan and God wrote the text. Doesn't matter if I or anyone else accepts or approves of it or not.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens So everyone except the christian bible you use mistranslated and misinterpreted is that it Tim? The jewish use of one nation is referred to as "he" which the christians mistook to mean one person, and the adding of the word homosexual is just another reinforcement of how the words you keep claiming are the only basis for your truth, have been manipulated over the course of all those thousands of years.


And I am not about to give you a basic science lesson because I am inclined to believe it has nothing to do with you not knowing and more to do with you not accepting facts, because of your bible.


God isn't threatened by science, in fact he created it. The only ones who are threatened by science are those who limited God and themselves because they put all their stock in one book. God and science are not mutually exclusive, and there are plenty of scientist who believe in God,  who have no problem living and working with the two side by side.

Ono
Ono

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

Kathleen said: "God and science are not mutually exclusive, and there are plenty of scientist who believe in God,  who have no problem living and working with the two side by side."

Religious institutions have bucked science for millennia when it doesn't align with their world view. I can remember when I was a kid, Christians saying dinosaurs were a hoax. Now of course they know they can't say it anymore without looking ignorant. But how quickly they forget their own ignorance! So now they say humans and dinosaurs walked the earth at the same time. They don't think that is ignorant so they still say such nonsense as well as deny that which opposes what they have been spoon fed by their leaders or talk radio, Fox News, etc. None of which is about God, but about fear, control and greed. There will always be those who walk in ignorance, afraid to go beyond the bill of goods they've been sold. Until their leader tell them otherwise they will continue to follow the path laid before them in happy ignorance. Fortunately, many Christians are waking up and speaking up and as you said, have no problem with the science of evolution, based on facts. Neither does God.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

The Jewish people as a nation continue to use the Torah. Christians, have followed Jesus Christ. Jesus is the one that taught the truth and the apostles expounded on those teachings. We, as Christians refer to the Old testament because Jesus did. Jesus is the only way to get in touch with the living God who created the world. The word homosexual and many others are used to clarify Jesus's teachings. Anyone who is seeking the truth can find it and prove it by studying the Bible. The way you state the situation leaves no room for God to speak, except to codify ones beliefs so they are comforted.

My needs do not include science lessons. I know how to mix chemicals, process metals, make biology and mechanical scientific experiments work to teach great grandchildren and neighborhood kids. I know a lot about astronomy and rocketry and aerodynamics. I don't know these things to the expert level but I know beyond the basics. What I don't agree with is evolution that teaches life began from nothing to develop into what we have now. That is NOT science. I know the basics about earth science enough to know when I am being lied to. I use simple logic for most of reality. I lived through the 70's with a prediction of the next ice age, the 80's included the prediction of global warming, the 90's started with fake data along with the program "models" to make the data. Now, after almost two decades of the globe NOT warming the "experts" have introduced global climate. This name is from not having any other words that have any credibility.

Thank you, Kathleen, that last paragraph is true. People who are threatened or fear anything that is obvious and is able to be replicated, these people might have psychological issues.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

No. The "proof", if you please, is from scripture. Experience is rather novel and only slightly interesting.

It's important to keep in mind that we are talking about the living God of creation. God doesn't need me but He is the one that wants me to be part of His world. NOT of this world. That is my experience that I need to remember.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

The only belief from the past that Christians believed is how some scientists were so enthralled with dinosaurs that there were many skeletal "finds" that turned out to be frauds.

It is infantile to state how your opposition is spoon fed by whoever they don't agree with. I agree there is fear, control and greed but it is never limited to one's opposition.

Ignorance is bad and ignorance coupled with false wisdom is very dangerous.

Science and evolution is not the same as science of evolution. Christians have no problem with talking and believing facts. Actually, facts are what we yearn for. Facts are not easy to come by but when they are presented then we have agreement. You know, peace and harmony. That is God's will also.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Ono @kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @DavidStevens  It's funny.. You see, to say Science is wrong limits God.. There is NO REASON why an all powerful being couldn't have (and I happen to believe did) create a universe in which the laws of physics are as they are in this universe, where history appears as it does in this one.. It's totally irrelevant whether God decided that we will get to this point in history by setting the ball rolling 14 billion years ago or just a few millennia, it makes no difference to the present, and to simply state that God must have created a universe in such a way because that is the only way the Bible makes sense limits this all powerful being in such a way that they lose their omnipotence..


Tim picks and chooses his metaphors from the bible, especially when they condemn homosexuals, but then states that the Bible must be taken literally when it describes a time before man, and a time when man didn't know how to read and write.

To state that "evolution is rubbish" is just daft. To deny global warming is just selfish. To deny that God cannot make the world in such a way that you cannot catch a glimpse of more of Gods beauty simply by looking very closely at stuff, which is all that science really does, is denying God is here and present with us. It limits God to only being present in the paper pages of a book, which only got its meaning when a printer typeset and printed "Bible" on the spine.. Before that it was just a bunch of paper, that's not omnipotence.

So if the meaning is in the words, and not the paper, then you can, and must take those words and give them meaning in the world.. Not to condemn, but to learn how to show love and compassion, as God did through Jesus.. And you can't do that by finding excuses in the hidden meanings in words that have not been written, and then tell everyone that the Bible is the only source of truth.. Either it is, in which case, your hidden meanings and interpretations are wrong, or it's not, in which case everyone is just as correct with their interpretations.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z @SwissJon @DavidStevens 

"Ignorance is bad and ignorance coupled with false wisdom is very dangerous."

None of us are the ones refusing to read anything unless we are sure it will agree with what we already know Tim. None of those posting here have said they won't read something unless it's useful to them.. EXCEPT YOU.


So, since the only thing you take in on this thread are your own words, I suggest that you apply that quote to yourself before you further expose your ignorant and dangerous point of view.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

The Bible does not claim to be a complete history book. In fact God did create the earth as He claims in the Bible. When God created anything is impossible to say and to believe in creation rather than macro evolution is not limiting God.


"Tim picks and chooses his metaphors from the bible" How so.? When did I claim "that the Bible must be taken literally when it describes a time before man, and a time when man didn't know how to read and write." This totally against what I believe or what I have said. You can say anything you want but words not based on facts are so much a waste of time.

Macro evolution is false but you will continue to believe in laws of biology and physics being broken just so your mind can stay in it's warped condition. Your choice.

I have never denied global warming. Even the politicians have moved on from global warming, to be current you have to say "climate change". However saying it is science is stupid. Saying man caused it and can do anything to reverse it is foolish. To deny the fraud that is going on in the name of science means the facts are of no importance.

Again, the Bible never claimed to be a complete history book, although it does contain precise history.

Give words meaning in the world??? No body can show how that would work. Jesus did show love and compassion but not as much as when Jesus taught truth and wisdom.

Hidden meanings in words??? How does that connect with the Bible being the only source of truth?

Of course you may continue with your interpretations of anything. You don't need my permission, as long as it makes sense to you and a circle of friends for moral support. 

Ono
Ono

@SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

Since our perception of time comes from human experience and God is outside our timeline, it isn't hard to think that a billion years is nothing for God. I have to say evolution deniers are putting extreme limits on who God is. It is understandable to a degree, we are after all extremely limited in conceptualizing anything outside our own experience. Even the Bible mentions that for God a day is like thousands of years, which should be clue for young-earthers to understand that our perception of time and God's time is different. But you know, there are some who still believe the earth is flat, because the Bible told them so. Those that claim wisdom from the book, but remain steeped in ignorance are only fooling themselves.


Love what you said: "Not to condemn, but to learn how to show love and compassion, as God did through Jesus."

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

My faith is in Jesus Christ who either wrote the Bible or inspired it to be written. Either way it wouldn't be possible to have faith without Jesus as the foundation. The written word is the way to know about the blessings as well as the blueprint, the building permit, the energy with all the material to make a life that will last forever.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevens You do realize Tim that they didn't really change the name. They are used interchangeably and both terms have been around for decades.


Global warming refers to the greenhouse gases put into the atmosphere, climate change is the consequence of global warming.


http://www.skepticalscience.com/climate-change-global-warming-basic.html


And just .01% of the climate scientists reject global warming, 97% agree  that humans are responsible and here is another link for you in which a scientist shows just that...through, what do you know, SCIENCE. Saying there is no such thing as a science which studies climate and climate change is stupid, or that their science is stupid, is a ludicrous statement.


http://motherboard.vice.com/read/the-statistical-probability-that-climate-change-is-natural-is-01-percent.


But how wonderfully convenient for you Tim that you pick which science to accept and use and which ones to deny. All the technology, (the computer your using), the medical advancements, and there is a whole science  of Biblical Archeology, etc. You claim that we like to only pick the parts of the bible that go along with our way of thinking, but you only take the science that agrees with your way of thinking. 

      All science uses the same strict standards for testing, evaluating etc., applied in specific ways in each discipline. All must go through many steps and be able to be replicated.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@Ono @SwissJon @kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens 

No body that I know believe in flat earth or a young earth. The Bible definitely doesn't talk about a flat earth.

It takes more faith to believe in Darwinian evolution than it takes to believe that God made the earth and every good creature on it.

In fact, macro evolution is totally against the Bible. The Bible doesn't claim to record the complete history of the earth nor the universe.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevens 


I don't need to prove anything Tim. But... "I would read Kant, if I had a good reason to do so." seems like a good start.. That's nothing like you stated, and personally I don't believe you have actually read Kant, or you'd know what I was referring to.


Why would I point fingers if I want the truth?? Well, I do want the truth, only I don't think you hold it.. Your behaviour is not reflective of Christ's behaviour, so.... I point fingers where there the two ways depart.. Why would I point fingers? To try to lead you back onto Christ's path and to try to stop you leading people down a different path that is not the way to Christ.. THAT is why I point fingers at you..

No.. I'm not perfect, I've never claimed to be.. But then I'm also not the one condemning others. You want to avoid the tag of "Intolerant".. Stop persecuting others while you're imperfect. I'm just holding a mirror to you Tim, if it hurts, it's because you hurt others.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevens You refused to read Kant and another link, ( which I don't remember what it was ) that someone posted, saying, " you'd read it if you thought it would help" or something along those lines. And that is just two things right off the top of my head that I remember, there are more.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

Where does global cooling fit in the picture? Climate change was not started until the global warming didn't work since we haven't had global warming for the last 18 years. The politicians need something to keep the gullible in line and climate change covers anything that happens, since climate changes regularly.

The scientists that don't agree with the politicians are the scientists that don't get government grants or are not employed by an entity that gets government grants.

My statement was that the science that pertains to climate change is fraudulent and biased. I didn't say no science studies climate or climate change.

You may pick any science example or topic you wish. I simply picked the two that are perennially in the news in some form or fashion. Go ahead pick your favorite.

What can be replicated of the programs depicting climate change? It is like these brainiacs have been working on various programs for years, one program after another until something works. I remember when one of the university, it may have been UC at Berkley, anyway they predicted global warming would produce more than the normal hurricanes and more violent ones for the next 5 years and the next 7 years came and went with less than half the normal and very mild ones happened. Then Katrina hit the 8th year but that was the only one they could point to. The point being, their work was not able to be replicated. They forgive and forget any errors. They predicted a rise in the tides where many beach towns would be inundated. Has not even risen enough to measure. If they were to fit the predicted timetable, they will have to start going up dramatically, like 6-8 inches per year. Many scientists that were on board are now realizing this is all a politically driven event. The politicians have to make a crisis, if they can't find one to their liking.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

It's definitely not intellectual. It's more like finding a vast unending treasure, a discovery. Each day is quite different. Sometimes it is surreal because I don't understand it as it happens. Maybe more than a few days goes by and the big picture comes into focus. It's hard to explain a spiritual life to anyone who thinks in terms of this physical world. Although the two can mingle, they seldom do.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I have a hunch what you are referring to. The writings of Kant I read was in the beginning of his writings and this is a good example of a long winded writer. His words that would go on for hours if he were speaking and by the time I got done with about a half dozen pages, I still had no idea of what the point that he was making. Maybe I don't have the intellect and he is too wise for me. It was a total waste of time.

You are correct, I don't have the truth, no person does. The best we can do is quote Jesus and the apostles because they taught the truth.

Your verbiage tells me that you are desperate. You claim to know for sure that I am leading people away from Jesus Christ but no examples or proof. Only your lack of logic and incredible claims.

I am not condemning, persecuting nor leading astray others. If anyone is being persecuted it would be Jesus and that is sin. The hurt happens because I see people believing lies and Jesus died and was resurrected to conquer the author of lies and sin.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@SwissJon @Tim Conley @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevens 

I have read enough of Kant to know he is as confused as the next mortal. It doesn't mean that I read all of Kant but I don't need to. I wonder, just curious, have you read all of the Bible?

I am not condemning, I am not intolerant, I simply point the way that truth has been presented to me by Jesus Christ.

I refuse to point fingers at anyone except to the ONE to follow, Jesus Christ.

You seem to know for sure that you know more of the Bible than I do. But the proof is in how one treats others who don't agree with them or might have a few questions. The truth is what Jesus taught and that is my main point because all of the rest of life's lessons are dependent on knowing the truth. Otherwise love or forgiveness or grace or anything else will not make sense. 

I am not perfect either. Never claimed to be nor have I ever said it was necessary. Perfection is a good goal but only by following and obeying Jesus Christ can it ever be possible. 

Persecuting? Jesus is the one that being persecuted here.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

I have so read Kant. Sorry if I didn't respond the way you expected. I am also sorry if I didn't get the point you wanted to make with that portion of Kant. I didn't think it was a valid point the way you did.

As accusations go, I accept your debate for what it is, although I don't agree with your stated positions. I certainly do refuse to make personal accusations. I always respond to the topic as I see it. If that isn't good enough, maybe I am not the intolerant one.

A person doesn't have to agree with some premise to avoid the tag of "intolerant".

I encourage everyone to look at the issue that is presented and offer a direct response. I intend to keep doing just that as well as I am able.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens This statement, "The scientists that don't agree with the politicians are the scientists that don't get government grants or are not employed by an entity that gets government grants.",  you have backwards Tim. 

It's the .01% of scientists who are getting the funding from big oil companies, the Koch brothers and the politicians, ( and the reasons should be obvious), not the 97% who are giving the facts.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens

 Tim, just stop now, 

"Climate change was not started until the global warming didn't work since we haven't had global warming for the last 18 years. The politicians need something to keep the gullible in line and climate change covers anything that happens, since climate changes regularly."


This is simply not true! Scientist have used the term global warming AND the term climate change for decades. If you had bothered to read, global warming refers to the greenhouse gases, climate change refers to the consequences of those greenhouse gases, but the terms are used interchangeably.
I'm Done. I refuse to continue with you when you don't read, don't do some basic simple research and refuse to use the common sense the good lord gave you! 

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z

Are you saying that there is an intellectual component (study), but it is not intellectual? And there is a visceral or feeling component, but it transcends feeling? And there is an experiential component, but it goes beyond any experience?

And that ultimately, it defies any description that can happen in words?

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @kathleen z @DavidStevensThe truth is what Jesus taught and that is my main point because all of the rest of life's lessons are dependent on knowing the truth. "


Well Jesus Christ never taught that homosexuality was a sin so maybe you should stop referring to homosexuality as a sin, or stop saying you only speak of Christ's teachings and truth.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

So you are ok with letting the government take over?

I am 100% sure that the government has more money and influence than any other entity.

Do the Koch brothers have more than Bill Gates, George Soros, Buffet, and many other liberal billionaires? I think not but the Koch brothers are accused of funding everything everywhere that liberals don't like. Has to be a boogeyman and a scapegoat to get the masses in line.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

I have done my research. The terms global warming and climate change do in fact interchange and they do impact what the other term means.

The problem is for what reason. The reason is political control. The leaders will tell us practically anything if it is going to keep us scrambling to make a life and a better world. Whether it works or not is not their thinking. That's the confusion that helps control the masses. Make another commission, more government bureaucracy, more authority where none is needed and credibility is diminished.

I could finish with the same words that you finished with but I have hope that people will wake up and take some individual accountability. Use that common sense that comes by thinking after looking at all of the evidence, not stopping at the evidence presented by the "leaders".

Cheers. Peace. 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@BeauJackson @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

That is a play on words. "10 hottest recorded years" is easy if they don't have to explain how they got the data.

For just one example, how do they compare records when the collection of the data is vastly different than it was even 30 years ago.

Another example is the data collection points have changed and many collection points have been added with a few that have been deleted.

If the data has been "adjusted" or "counter weighted" for the advancement in technology and for the population placement, then who is holding them accountable to make sure there is as few errors as possible?

To start with, the NOAA began as a research facility with interest in the oceans and the affect of the oceans on the land mass. They collected data by volunteers and it was primarily run that way until after WW1. Then their data was collected by paid staff but it was assimilated and analyzed regionally. Only since about 1950 have they made it professionalized and only since about 1973 have they used satellites to compare their data with. That is when the big push agenda about politicizing the global climate issues. Ever since then it is hard(if not impossible) to know what to believe.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

Study is intellectual but it has its limitations. So intellectual is way down on the list of necessities in relations with God.

Feelings are also important but if that is all one has remaining after any relational encounter with God, then it will be worse than containing a triple decker ice cream cone in desert heat. In other words, it won't happen in reality.

Experience is open to interpretation. Experience is good, though if it isn't backed up with empirical facts, it will always be lost as the morning fog is evaporated. That's why we have photographs. We take notes. The Bible is what God wants us to experience, in scriptural form. All this is meant to have a good experience last and in the case of scripture, that experience will last through eternity.

One's experience and relations with God is not always possible to put into words. At least not my words, but then maybe I am limited more than others in that regard.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

If you are interested, I can show you where Jesus taught that homosexuality is as much a sin as any other mortal, fleshly person does practically every day.

If you are not interested then you have no authority to tell me to stop referring to Jesus's teachings and life and resurrection as the way to eternal life.

I shall go on pointing the way to the truth until God or some entity with more authority telling me to stop.

BeauJackson
BeauJackson

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens The problem is that you give too much weight to the climate change deniers.  I agree with you on the fact that the left extreme are climate change fear mongers and are absolutely bonkers.  However, to look at the extreme doom and gloom global warming people and to throw the whole thing out is just as bad as it is to buy into all the Ebola fear mongering that is going on now.  The secret to finding the truth is to seek the middle.  The extremes on both sides are full of shit.  Climate change deniers are just as bad as the climate change extremists.  I do not believe the coasts will disappear in ten years, but it is happening none the less.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @BeauJackson @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens

The bottom line is this.


We've been given the gift of this earth, we are the stewards of it, and we are failing miserably, in EVERY way.


We're destroying the land and water, filling it with poisons, pesticides, over using with no recovery time. We treat animals as if they are inanimate objects, not living breathing beings. And if I'm remembering my facts correctly, the 3rd biggest contributor of methane gases is livestock, so not only is it killing us from the inside (as they are pumped full of antibiotics, hormones and are fed with GMO corn), it is killing us from the outside, and that is not a natural occurrence. Animals are becoming extinct at rates that are not natural. We hunt, kill and torture them for nothing more then folklore, (ancient medicines that don't work), profit, greed, ignorance and sadistic pleasure.


We can't even get along with each other. As we kill one another over the color of skin (even to the point of the shades of skin), religion, my book is right yours is wrong, how and what some call God, which piece of land is whose. We have even gone as far as within Christianity we can't get along, (my way of believing in Christ is correct and your way is wrong). We are killing and persecuting people over who they love, LOVE!! 


Do you not see the lunacy and hypocrisy in any of this? ALL of this is manmade Tim, ALL OF IT!!


This planet isn't destroying itself, WE ARE!! In every possible way available to us we destroy the land, water, animals, each other.


Do you really believe this is what God wants? Do you think he wants us killing each other over a name, a piece of land, or who someone loves, or the color of their skin? Because I don't. I don't for one second believe he gives two hoots as to what we call him if it means killing/ persecuting instead of the clear direction he gave that LOVE is the most important. Love of him, each other and this earth and all that is on it. 


We are failing, God isn't. And still he gives us the very things we need to help ourselves. He gives us the science, and all those who devote all their time and knowledge to those sciences to help us to see and understand how we destroy, and what can help us thrive. And still there are those who choose to ignore what God gives us, in fact is shouting at us, to stop destroying what he gave us, this great gift.


He made it really very simple, we are suppose to love, him, each other and the earth. That no where is love ever going to be a bad thing. That helping, providing, caring, loving will never make you lose anything. That when you do those things and treat every living thing humanely, with respect and dignity...that when you make things better for some you really make things better for all. That giving up something doesn't mean loss, that you get what you give.


So you can continue to argue and deny (what is right in front of you) all you want Tim, about science, the bible, the name of God ( which BTW there are about 200 different names that Christ is called in the bible), but it isn't doing one damn thing to help any of the problems that are happening right here, right now! How many times does God have to hit us over the head with a brick to wake us up? 

Does it matter what we call anything? A rose by any other name would still smell as sweet.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@BeauJackson @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

I have seen all of these data links before. The real full story is more than they are saying.

For the biggest fly in the ointment, the records doesn't show anything about the length of a cycle nor the cause of why a cycle happens nor what cause a cycle to reverse course. For instance, we know from the native Indians that a mini ice age cycle had lasted for about 270 years and that "ended" in the 1890's. Of course that is not scientific data, but neither is the first 20 to 30 years of NOAA.

Also, if the data about the "hottest since" whenever is to believed, then what is the cause, when the most pollution of the USA, China, India and many other developing countries began about 1970 and still has not shown any signs of slowing or diminishing. By all accounts of the "expert scientists", this record pollution should be steady record increases. But it has not been record increases with some leveled or reduced temperatures.

Plus there is the memory of global cooling predictions beginning in the early 70's and into the early 80's.

They don't have a whole lot of credibility.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens I am not referring to the sins that all people are capable of, sexual or otherwise.  He didn't single out homosexuals, sexually or in any way, at all. The way you and others do, and using Christ as your scapegoat for bigotry and hatred. They are just people, capable of all the same sins, they don't have this one sin that is exclusive to them because of who they love.


So if a father loves his son, a son loves his father, a brother loves his brother...those are men loving men. And if straight couples can ( and do) the same exact sex acts that two men or two women can do, where is this sin that is exclusive to homosexuals? And be careful Tim because earlier in you comments you accused me of only making it about sex, (which I absolutely was not) and you said it was about more than the sex acts. So what is it Tim? If two men, friends, brothers, fathers, sons can love each other and it's not a sin, and straight couples can have the same kind of sex as gay couples, ( and lets just say, for arguments sake, that they are all married) where is the sin part?

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens

Hey Tim, it's clear that we'll never agree if homosexuality is a sin. So I'd like to ask you a more earthly question.


If same-sex marriage came up for a vote in your state, would you vote to legalize it? By legalize, I mean offer same-sex couples the same privileges, protections, and responsibilities legally afforded to hetero couples?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@BeauJackson @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

" The secret to finding the truth is to seek the middle."  And you already know where is that "middle"?


Have you known of any beaches to disappear? That is more than the normal erosion of one beach and the enlarging of another? I may be naïve more than most, however, one question.....if the water level rises wouldn't it rise everywhere about the same?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

It's like when people who said I was picking and choosing....

Doesn't make any difference who listens to what. The politicians will set policy and decide what needs to happen. They pick and choose what they want the world to be.

It's like you are saying a few people at the top will know best because their experts know all that there is to know.

It's all about preserving the lifestyle for the people in charge since they don't abide by the rules set for the lower class. You know, the ones who don't even know what questions to ask.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @BeauJackson @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

The source of ALL the love, the answers to any and all problems is Jesus Christ. He is the one who created the world and yes we are the ones messing it up. Like sin in our hearts is messing our heads and heart. God had to start over once because the sin of people and He will do it again. We could make some parts of the world better, but the part of us that is wrecking the world is not our hands or our head. The problem comes from not being able to correct what is on the inside no matter how much we try.

The sciences and computers that we think are able to solve all our problems, will only delay the inevitable. No, the real problem has nothing to do with anything physical. The only peace, love, order and blessing is from God, our creator. Our leaders don't have any chance of resolving even one problem. I see what is right in front of me, I also see beyond these problems. God is the only one who has the ability to see the big picture. The WHOLE picture.

Of course we should do what we can to make this world a better place, IF we can. It is all impossible if we don't give God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit their due. By honoring them and worshiping them for the wisdom and sacrifice already given to us and this world, then we can live in peace and harmony. By NOT honoring our creator we are only spinning our wheels regardless of what we name our love or who we love or how we love.

Please see how all the wisdom and intellect in this world only makes the problem worse and delays our solution.

The only help that matters will come from above through our hearts within us.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

If you want to call the Lord's blessings, guidance and teachings experience that's your choice. But I put the emphasis on "Bible" rather than experience. Of course living a life with events is experience. How those events are responded to, or better yet the affect on one's spiritual journey will determine if the relationship with God is improved or is it a simple experience. The preparation by reading, studying and obeying the Bible is going to make all the difference.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

If you want special attention, you will get it. But you still won't be happy since God has many believers that know the truth.

Who they love isn't the real sin. Actually the real sin is the lust and the believing the lies that get one to sin. They are people, but not "just" people. God made each one of us to know love in the way God does. God gave us a guide book to show us the way to love and be loved. It happens that he teaches one form of love that He accepts.

Straight people are sexual in God's design. Not all heterosexuals are straight. Another fact: love has nothing at all to do with sex. Love and sex are two distinct acts based on two entirely different emotions, at least the way God designed things to be.

Here it is in one sentence: Sin is the choice of believing a lie and living according to how the author of that lie tempts one to live.

I am not going to spend the time to list each and every a relationship could and/or should be. Anybody capable of thinking will know what is right if they have any interest in knowing.

If one wants to know the truth then spend more time seeking the truth than defending a lie.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono 

Agreeing with me is not the important part. It's Jesus that will be the judge.

That would be a resounding NO to any body who wants to get married that don't have the same vision as God does about WHY they want to get married. Can't limit heterosexuals getting married for the wrong reasons. Can't limit same sex people getting married, in some states. But we can still limit people marrying multiple partners or underage or bestiality. And don't think those unions are too far ahead in the future.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @BeauJackson @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

What I have is right, yes. I may not have the full story but as I look around I don't see anyone who does. I see a whole lot of noise and excited emotions from our supposedly bright leaders. The problem is that they can't answer some basic questions with honesty and credibility. It just doesn't make sense what they are telling us. It does make sense if one doesn't ask any questions and accepts everything as it is laid out. Just don't look behind the curtains. No peeking!

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon @kathleen z

Would it be fair to say that there was a moment (or perhaps a period of time, like a day, month, or year) wherein you felt the Lord move in your life, and you went from being "not saved" Tim to "saved" Tim?


And would it be fair to say that since that time, you have continued and deepened your study of the Bible, and with the deepening of your study, your life has become more meaningful, made more sense to you, and become richer in every way (I do not necessarily include the monetary sense here)?

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens   If I want special attention? That's a joke, you have asked many questions and then complained when someone didn't respond to it. And I never once said that there was no difference between love and sex.  But, yet again you did not answer the question and just used your typical diversions to go around it. 


So if a man and a man or a woman and a woman love each other the same exact way a straight couple does, and they all have sex the same way....where is the sin specific to homosexuals? Why are they being singled out? What lie that's unique to them are they believing that makes THEM sinful? And if they are all sinners for the same reasons why are the only ones being singled out the gay community?


And what design of God's are you referring to? The one that has a man marrying many women, or the one that has a woman give her slave to her husband to impregnate?


But you are right that God did give us a design for loving...HE SAID TO LOVE YOUR NEIGHBORS AS YOU LOVE YOURSELF!  He said LOVE, there were no exceptions to that, he didn't say love everyone except.... And there is no place in the bible that Christ himself says anything about homosexuality and that just by virtue of who they love are any more sinners than anyone else. If it was such an important distinction, this particular sin, you would think Christ would have spoken about it, as he did, at length, about divorce.


So if that is really your cause, saying everyone is a sinner who isn't loving according to God's design, whether they be straight or gay, then go after EVERYONE, don't single out one group!


The one believing lies here Tim is you. Believing that marriage is just this one way that christians say it is. It wasn't even just that one way in the bible.


Just a little piece from an article written by biblical scholars;


“As academic biblical scholars, we wish to clarify that the biblical texts do not support the frequent claim that marriage between one man and one woman is the only type of marriage deemed acceptable by the Bible’s authors,” the scholars wrote.

AvalosCargill and Atkinson tackle, in particular, the many formulations and types of marriages that they believe the Bible includes. From polygamy to celibacy, the mechanics and compositions are intriguing. They write:

The phrase “at least one woman” recognizes that polygamy was not only allowed, but some polygamous biblical figures (e.g., Abraham, Jacob) were highly blessed. In 2 Samuel 12:8, the author says that it was God who gave David multiple wives: “I gave you your master’s house, and your master’s wives into your bosom. … And if all this had been too little, I would have given you even more” (Revised Standard Version).

In fact, there were a variety of unions and family configurations that were permissible in the cultures that produced the Bible, and these ranged from monogamy (Titus 1:6) to those where rape victims were forced to marry their rapist (Deuteronomy 22:28-29) and to those Leviratemarriage commands obligating a man to marry his brother’s widow regardless of the living brother’s marital status (Deuteronomy 25:5-10; Genesis 38; Ruth 2-4). Others insisted that celibacy was the preferred option (1 Corinthians 7:8; 28).

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono

You made several statements there, but I was unable to discern your answer to the question I posed. 


I will ask it again as plainly as I know how:


If it came up in YOUR state to grant EQUAL LEGAL PROTECTION to same-sex marriages, would you vote in favor of it or against it?

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@BeauJackson @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

However you wish to measure is fine with me. What is the plan to measure the agriculture belt migration?

Oh, I know, check back with the experts being paid by the government. Yeah, they will tell the whole story and publish the full data and how they arrived at the data.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @SwissJon @kathleen z 

Yes, that moment was when I learned what it meant to have life in a kingdom under a new King. I had to be born again and that was by my acceptance of Jesus's truth.

That is all true and more. Much more.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

The question you put forth is not reality. The question itself is a diversion. The lie that is being blind to you is that of believing that living against God's design will be love.

The homosexual community is not being singled out. That is a ploy of being a victim makes more people have pity on them.

God's design is obvious if you read the Bible in search of the truth. Yes, there is the aspect of slave and master. That is man's idea. God's idea is to live in truth and in love. Love, honesty, grace and caring are the framework of God's design. Jesus was the servant teacher and the whole plan is based on giving what one has to another that lacks. When this plan is lived out in harmony because of God's love towards us then it works every time.

What difference would it make to have Jesus mention a particular word? If it goes against what you don't like, you then look until you find a loophole. However there is many references to the concept of lust, greed and gluttony. There is many people who commit sin and they rationalize their sin, homosexuality is one of them. You have scriptures that are clear in meaning and I can supply more if you would honestly look at them.

The verse in 2 Samuel 12 says the Lord gave these unto David's care. The story is about how David got the wife of another man by murder. The verse in Deuteronomy 22 is about what a man should do if he rapes a woman.

Look, I see that you wish to justify and rationalize for the sake of living the way you want. If a person wants to live according to God's will then that person makes every effort to seek the truth of what God's will is. Why pretend to be righteous when it is clear that the agenda is already set in your heart.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon @Ono 

If that is what you want to see in the words I wrote, you are free to do so. But if you take a closer look you will find the word "limit". I was referring to the practice of moving the boundaries, limits until there is no boundaries or limits.

For instance, after the homosexuals get everything they are going for in the marriage issue, then some evil person will petition the courts to allow his idea of marriage. What would there be to stop the court from not allowing anything he could come up with? It might seem ridiculous and gross now but there would be that reality.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @BeauJackson @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens That you don't recognize the things God sends to help and show. For instance all the scientists that are showing us what is happening to our world and the things we need to change to help ourselves. You only see that politicians can't agree on a name, not the facts of what the problems are. Whatever politicians call it doesn't change the facts or what is happening.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens Umm I don't know Tim, what difference would it make to have Christ mention a particular word, that you and others seem to put so much importance on? You and others have put so much importance on it that it is the very basis for the persecution and denial of rights you inflict on them.  Since you are the one who keeps saying " the bible says, the bible says" and "the bible is the only truth" and that you put all your faith in those words, but when it is pointed out to you that Christ himself said nothing about it all of a sudden there isn't so much importance on those words or the lack of those words,or that truth you claim to live by. If Christ thought it that important, if it truly was a sin, than Christ most certainly would have instructed on it.


You say everything you need to know about God's truth is in the bible, but when something is not there, as spoken by Christ, the living God, you no longer put any stock in it. Or, for instance when you talk about a clear design for marriage set by God, and you are shown, through your truth, the bible, that God had many designs for marriage....... giving some many wives, and saving Hagar from Sarah's wrath, marriage is ordained even if it is based on rape, or having to marry your brother's wife (if the husband dies), whether or not he already has a wife, etc. etc. etc. All of these examples (and there are many others) don't support what you say is God's clear design for marriage. 


So all the very things you accuse us of doing, only using the parts of the bible that support what we believe, you are doing, again and again and again. You sidestep, divert, and twist. Your problem is that all of us see all the sidestepping, diverting and twisting and the total hypocrisy in your comments and your "form" of christianity.....all of it so unChrist like it sickens me.

DavidStevens
DavidStevens

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono


Thank you for your concise answer.


Because my marriage is recognized by local, state, and federal governments, if I die, everything goes to my wife, despite the fact that I have not written a will. No one, including my parents or siblings, has any legal standing to argue against this.


If a partner in a same-sex marriage dies, and they have a detailed and legally notarized will, there are many U.S. states wherein the family of the deceased can challenge the will and often win, utterly over-ruling the intentions of the deceased and leaving the surviving partner destitute.


By your statement, this is a policy you support, Tim. That seems neither Christian nor American to me. Please explain to me how you can justify this.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@Tim Conley @DavidStevens @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono  There you go Tim.. So in you are against allowing people to be equal in the eyes of God because you are against homosexuality. Two consenting adults are not allowed to make their peace with God because Tim has a problem with their actions..

So much for your Christianity..

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @DavidStevens @SwissJon @Ono No there absolutely would not be that reality. Do you not see the difference? Animals would not and do not have a say in what we humans do to them, they are, unfortunately, at the mercy of we humans.  Two consenting adults entering into marriage , and having equal protections under the law, is not even close to what you are suggesting.


And the very fact that you can jump to such illogical, irrational conclusions without one ounce of sense, common or otherwise, does tell me all I need to know.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @BeauJackson @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

One thing I know for sure is when there is an agenda afoot and everything has to line up with what they want us to believe. Us mere mortals don't get to ask any questions that might change the course of their agenda. That is very plain by the questions that I asked and no response. Silence, except to try to put the onus back on me that my naiveté is my downfall. 

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 

I specifically said it is not the word homosexual that is in Jesus's teachings. If you don't like the Bible and the words in it, then it follows logically that you would be upset about what is in it.

If one doesn't recognize the truth in the Bible then of course you would say I don't put any stock in it. Fact is you are driven by one issue and as long as the Bible has any good words, i.e.:love thy neighbor, it is good to go. However, you have no interest in the other side of the issue. But I am not here to convince anyone of anything, I only intend to point to the truth and to the extent that anyone wants to engage in that conversation, I am ready to go.

The examples you give for many designs for marriage were not of God's design. Many of the cultures surrounding Israel were adopted and God acquiesced but He sure didn't condone those practices. Example: The Jews had worship practices that were adopted from surrounding cultures and for a time God let those practices go on because of the peoples choice. God never approved or condoned simply from being recorded in the Bible.

Oh, contraire, I could use the whole Bible if you prefer. Would you respond any differently? I think NOT. If you think you would respond differently, how and why if seeking the truth is not in your intentions. You call my responses hypocrisy and say it is sickening, should I wait for details?.

SwissJon
SwissJon

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens 


Kathleen.. You aren't alone.. When it all comes down to it, remember, you walk with God beside you, and when the going gets tough, he will carry you.. Tim is lonely and fooling himself by thinking that God wants to play mind games.. God does not, and can see through it all..

Take care of yourself. That beauty you find in the world, and in your own faith.. That acceptance of others that are unlike you, that's God working through you.


I hope you find happiness in life.. And find God waiting for you when this life ends, as it must for each of us.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono 

The other legal matter is the access in medical institutions when anyone gets sick. Any medical institution is bound to accept any agreement drawn up legally and notarized. I am told if one gets a medical directive, it can say anything the participants want it to be.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@DavidStevens @Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono 

Despite the fact that I am not a legal expert by any measure, I have heard many ways this problem could be taken care of.

One simple way that I have heard of that is legal and airtight in any jurisdiction is to draw up a contract. Of course it would have to be done by an attorney to be reliable. If you are talking about real property, who ever has their name on the title is the owner. Same for vehicles or bank accounts.

If that is the reason for getting married then that is not love. It could be an expression of one definition of love, but not the way it is used in God's will.

I will not hold you accountable for judging whether I am Christian or not simply for holding a view on a legal matter.

Tim Conley
Tim Conley

@kathleen z @Tim Conley @DavidStevens @SwissJon @Ono 

Do you really believe the court will rule on behalf of animals? The reality is that this culture is getting closer to being animals except that animals don't practice deviant behavior for the sake of pleasure. In fact they don't practice deviancy at all.

Two consenting adults doesn't mean they are making choices that benefit anyone, even themselves. Plus, to make people that choose to be nonparticipants and require them to celebrate that they don't believe in is wrong because it is against the will of God. Consenting adults can do anything they want, just don't expect everyone to accept it. Especially bad to require participation. Egregious to expect celebration of it.

I am not jumping to any conclusions. What I predicted is happening in places such as England now and it is only a matter time until it gets here to the USA.

kathleen z
kathleen z

@Tim Conley @kathleen z @SwissJon @Ono @DavidStevens It is you who don't like the fact that Christ said nothing about homosexuality , using that word or any other that refers to it, so you have to keep sidestepping and diverting to justify you hatred and bigotry. And you are wrong again Tim, God GAVE David many wives and said he would give him more. If that isn't God's design I don't know what is.


The passage involving 2 Samuel 12:8 rather clearly reveals otherwise.

"And I gave thee