I know the title is sort of strange English; but it makes my point. You can study to know many things ABOUT God; although “Knowing God” is a completely different EXPERIENCE. Knowing what God’s ways, personality, temperament, character and tendencies are is in other words knowing His SPIRIT. Then you can be sure how He will respond in any major circumstance or decision.
1 Corinthians 2:11,10,12 (NKJV)
For what man knows the things of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so no one knows the things of God except the Spirit of God. 10 But God has revealed them to us through His Spirit. For the Spirit searches all things, yes, the deep things of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, that we might know the things that have been freely given to us by God.
1 Corinthians 2:11 (WNT)
For, among human beings, who knows a man’s inner thoughts except the man’s own spirit within him? In the same way, also, only God’s Spirit is acquainted with “God’s inner thoughts”.
John 14:21 (CEV)
If you love me, you will do what I have said, and my Father will love you. I will also love you and “SHOW YOU WHAT I AM LIKE.”
To “Know” God is to know WHAT HE IS LIKE! The Father revealed this to us by the Spirit of Christ in Jesus.
John 14:7 (NKJV)
“If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also; and from now on” you know” Him and have seen Him.”
John 14:16–17 (NIV)
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Counselor to be with you forever— 17 the Spirit of truth. The world cannot accept him, because it neither sees him nor knows him. But “YOU KNOW HIM”, for he lives with you and will be in you.
He’s a Good Man, He’d Never Do That!
Your family and closest friends know you best. They know what you most likely will do, or not do, in major circumstances. For instance if someone told my wife that I was going to look for someone that had wronged me and I had said that I was going to pour gasoline on them and burn them to satisfy my anger; she would think they were out of their mind and tell them “apparently you do not know my husband very well; he would never do such a thing”. It’s the same way with The God that I know; when you really know Him you instinctively know some of the things that are taught about Him “CANNOT BE TRUE”. When someone tells me that God sent His Son into the World to save the world (John 3:17, 12:32, 47; 1John 4:14) but His purpose and mission will be mostly a failure as most people will end up in a eternal burning torture pit, “HELL” to suffer in pain forever because He has some other need to satisfy his anger toward them for the sin His Son already suffered and paid for, also which, by the way; according to the Scriptures; God is not holding against them (2Cor 5:19). Or they will go to Hell because of their unbelief due to The Father not drawing them to Himself (John 6:44) Or they may go to hell even because of an absence of ever having any opportunity to believe in Christ because of where they were born and how they were incorrectly taught about God in that religious culture; makes no difference. It is “to hell with you” you did not measure up or follow the right directions…. This sounds utterly absurd and is the height of blasphemy and deprivation of character toward our most loving and gracious heavenly Father.
This my friends is why I cannot and will not accept the traditional teaching of hell. Because The GOD, I “KNOW” would not do or agree to such a thing; it would never even inter his mind.
Jeremiah 7:31 (NET) – GOD SPEAKING
7:31 “They have also built places of worship in a place called Topheth in the Valley of Ben Hinnom [Greek “Gehenna” the word usually translated hell in the gospels] so that they can sacrifice their sons and daughters by fire. That is something I never commanded them to do! Indeed, it never even entered my mind to command such a thing!”
Jeremiah 7:30–31 (The Message)
“The people of Judah have lived evil lives while I’ve stood by and watched.” God’s Decree. “In deliberate insult to me, they’ve set up their obscene god-images in the very Temple that was built to honor me. They’ve constructed Topheth altars for burning babies in prominent places all through the valley of Ben-hinnom, altars for burning their sons and daughters alive in the fire—a shocking perversion of all that I am and all I command.
Think about it people…
The wonderful truth is that God in His Love and Sovereignty has chosen to save the world through Christ Jesus this is the REAL GOOD NEWS! (Luke 15:3-6; Jhn 3:17, 12:32,47; Act 3:21; Rom 5:18-19; Eph 1:9-10; 4:4-5; <Isa 45:23; Rom 14:11; Phl 2:9-11; 1Cor 12:3;>1Tim 2:3-6; 4:9-11, Rev 5:13) Like Abraham, I am fully convinced that He is full well and able to do what he wants and what He has promised!
Romans 4:21 (NKJV)
(Abraham) and being fully convinced that what He had promised He was also able to perform.
He cannot fail one iota, He is GOD! I could go on and on with hundreds of verses, but this should be sufficient for my point. If you want much more information on this topic just go to this website www.tentmaker.org from there you can find many, many more resources.
As I have pondered these things for many hours and thought of all the really good friends and other acquaintances I have had through the traditional church. I have come to a conclusion as to why anyone would believe such a horrendous lie about our Glorious Loving Father and Savior of ALL creation.
First of all I don’t think most SERIOUSLY THINK about what they are really believing and saying so flippantly when they say; and make supposedly humorous church signs outside their buildings indicating someone will be “ETERNALY” BURNED IN AN EVERLASTING FIRE! Like “Think it’s Hot Here?” – Not Funny! What an unbearable hideous thought; stop and REALLY THINK ABOUT IT….. FOR-E-V-E-R billions of years and no relief, no let up, no mercy whatsoever; the time for that is over… (Although “His mercy endures forever” repeated 26 times in Ps. 136 alone) And eternity is just starting my friend… And for what purpose? What will it accomplish in the eternal plan of GOD? What GOOD will it do? Are not all GOD’S works GOOD? And how is this “justice”? For a lifespan of an average man even if one sinned continuously? When you really think about this; I know you don’t want to, but force yourself to stop and just think about this for just 10 minutes, just keep going farther and farther into the future, lifetimes pass, civilizations pass away, stars burn out, whole galaxies spin into oblivion and the man, women, or child is still BURNING IN THE FLAMES – SCREAMING IN AGONY – nothing has changed and nothing EVER will just continuous howls of pain and torment…… sentenced to EVERLASTING PUNISHMENT AND SUFFERING HORRIFIC TORMENT IN FLAMES OF FIRE – for a lifetime of sin; common sense tells me something is wrong with that picture friends….
Think For Yourself
Secondly, like I did at one time; they trust the translators of the bible way too much without ever questioning them or it. Paul said we should “test all things” and “keep that which is good”. By the way, did you know that the apostle Paul who we get most of our theology from, who wrote about two thirds of the New Testament never bothered to mention “Hell”. You will not find that teaching in his writings anywhere! Hmmm you’d think if it were as bad as it is preached and that serious He’d of given it a little space, at least a verse or two. Paul only uses the Greek word “hades” one time which in other places is translated hell; and in that place he declares that it is rendered powerless 1Cor 15:54-57. When something as serious as our eternal wellbeing is at stake I believe we should take every precaution to be sure we know the truth about what we believe. Including looking up words that have been translated and retranslated from one language to another where they are giving information on this most important subject.
FOR-EVER and EVER?
First of all there cant be two “Evers”, two “Ages” yes; or ages and ages, not Evers… For instance the word translated “Forever” is 99% of the time from the Greek word aion that either means “an age” – eon directly into English; which is about time, not timeless or eternal; scripturally it can mean a long of short time but always having a beginning and an end. Or it is the adjective of that same noun. Simple grammar will teach you that an adjective derived from a noun can never have more value or force than the parent word allows. For example the adjective “hourly” can never any meaning other than having to do with “hours” – the noun it is derived from; it could never mean yearly in other words. I could go deeper but time will not permit. It is sufficient to say that the underlying language of the bible rarely uses the word for eternal accept where it has to do with the attributes and character of GOD and NEVER in conjunction with punishment. Most do not know that there are many versions of the bible that do not even have eternal punishment in them at all and most of them were written 100-200 years ago. Most do not know enough about church history to know that Universal Salvation was the predominant teaching of the early church during the first 300 – 500 years. These are documented proven points I am making that are easily checked out on Wikipedia; or if you like, read the early church fathers. And that’s the problem most of today’s church leaders and people attending worship never question or check out anything; they just blindly believe what they are taught having way too much trust that their professors and teachers really know what they think they know. Yes I’m speaking of the education the pastor received in seminary too. He or she was too busy to question everything or do even more studies – just get the assignments done, get good grades and go on with ministry, right?… Jesus once said “when the blind lead the blind…….” You finish it. I’m not saying this in a derogatory fashion; just to point out that if you can’t see something you don’t know what you’re not seeing… The same way I believe Jesus meant it. Neither am I trying to blame or point a finger. I do not know everything but I want to share and sanction what I know is right. What I don’t know I am working on and will continue till I cross over to the other side. It is our responsibility in this life to continue to gain knowledge, wisdom and understanding; proverbs says
Proverbs 4:7 (NKJV)
7 Wisdom is the principal thing;
Therefore get wisdom.
And in all your getting, get understanding.
So I will continue to strive for this treasure as long as I have breath. I don’t want to be like the lazy servant that only returned the one talent he was given. None of us is going to agree 100% with each other or be 100% right all the time. But we don’t need to close our eyes to truth that is staring us in the face just because we don’t want to see it because it will rock the boat or even tip the boat over. I would rather be hanging on to a small stick of truth that cannot sink than to be relaxing on the Titanic for a leisurely cruise headed for a collision.
The traditional church, its leaders and followers have done untold good and wonderfully blessed this world; I am thankful for that and my associations with it in the past. I am not trying to condemn the church. I am trying to correct an error that is holding back multitudes from a real relationship with Our God through Jesus Christ Our LORD! Now that I have come to know our GOD better; I know that He is immeasurably more awesome and good than we had ever imagined or thought. This, my friends is the GOOD NEWS that I am so fervently trying to get out. I believe when the world really sees the REAL GOD and how he “Really is” we won’t have to beg anyone to come to church; we will have to get out of the way of the stampede headed that way!
(Luke 2:10, ESV)
“And the angel said to them, “Fear not, for behold, I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people.”
When we walk in The Spirit of GOD, Knowing the Mind, Heart, along with Irrefutable, Unchangeable, Character of our most Wonderful, Awesome, All-Sovereign, All-Powerful, All-Knowing, All-Present, All-Loving, GOD and Savior, keeping these as first and foremost in our thinking; it will bring us into a Relationship with CHRIST that will easily and permanently answer many questions you could never learn from a worldly or religious point of view.
Grace, Peace, and Love to All,
Dennis D. Caldwell