What if that’s not what God wants?

Catholics say that God wants us to overcome evil within ourselves. In actual fact, esoteric christians believed that to become part of the Kingdom of God, you need to overcome evil in the sense that you need to learn to overcome your sense of aversion towards pain and suffering. Jesus Christ came to model this way of life by giving himself to be crucified by fallen men.

He said in Matthew 16: “24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul?

Jesus also said in John 6:”48I am the bread of life. 49Your ancestors ate the manna in the wilderness, yet they died.50But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which anyone may eat and not die. 51I am the living bread that came down from heaven. Whoever eats this bread will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”

Moreover, Peter who is the closest of the twelve disciple of Jesus Christ  said in 1 Peter 5:10 “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” This suffering here is not interpreted by esoteric Christians as a suffering that is inevitable, but a suffering that is willed by God to teach us to overcome aversion and become strong and powerful. Suffering is interpreted here as purposed in itself. There is no other true reason behind being exposed to evil like accomplishing a particular mission that God wants accomplished here on earth.

(Joshua 1:8-9 NIV) Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. {9} Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.”

(John 6:33 NIV) For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world.”

(Romans 6:23 NIV) For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

(1 Corinthians 4:20 NIV) For the kingdom of God is not a matter of talk but of power.

(1 Corinthians 10:13 NIV) No temptation has seized you except what is common to man. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it.

(Galatians 6:7-8 NIV) Do not be deceived: God cannot be mocked. A man reaps what he sows. {8} The one who sows to please his sinful nature, from that nature will reap destruction; the one who sows to please the Spirit, from the Spirit will reap eternal life.

(Ephesians 4:24 NIV) and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

(Hebrews 13:16 NIV) And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased.

 

 

 

On the opposite side of the spectrum, we find Pentecostal christians who teach that humanity became sinful by nature because of the fall, thus all humanity deserves the punishment of eternal damnation. However, Jesus Christ came to pay for our sins by giving himself as a pure living sacrifice not for us to model his painful path, but to set us free from having to make any sacrifice except what we are led to make by the Holy Spirit. This type of sacrifice usually does not involve giving oneself to the cross literally, but only metaphorically through evangelism and mission work.  This involvement usually should not lead to poverty or sickness but on the opposite, Pentecostals believe that if we are being obedient to the Holy Spirit, our work for God should be rewarded here on earth and lead to health and prosperity.

Jesus said in John 10: “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” The meaning of life is interpreted by Pentecostals as materialistic life on earth; and this leads to the common understanding of a life without an imposed suffering. The only suffering that Pentecostals tolerate is one which the Christians were willing to face during their mission for God, hence the promotion of the theory that the more you are involved in mission work, the more you’re bound to be attacked by the enemy. This processed philosophy has even expanded to those who are not yet involved in Ministry work. In trying to justify pain in the believer’s life, Pentecostals explain this away by the fact that even when a person is not involved in ministry yet, God can still have a plan for them to get involved. This can trigger attacks all the same.  However, when pentecostals fail to see a legitimate explanation to the persistent suffering in someone’s life, they often explain that away by the presence of sin in the believer’s life.

The following are verses which Pentecostal Christians use to explain the justification theory.

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God

1 Peter 5:10 “And the God of all grace, who called you to his eternal glory in Christ, after you have suffered a little while, will himself restore you and make you strong, firm and steadfast.” Pentecostals believe that God wants to save the world from its sins and He uses humanity; namely Evangelical Christians and Pentecostals as his hands and feet, to achieve his will.   However, due to the existence of the enemy who is partly in charge of this world, because of Adam’s sin, then pain is almost inevitable to a certain degree when  doing God’s work.  This suffering here is not interpreted by a suffering that is willed by God, but a suffering that is inevitable,  due to the existence of evil.

(Psalms 46:1-2 NIV) For the director of music. Of the Sons of Korah. According to alamoth. A song. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. {2} Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,

(Isaiah 61:1-3 NIV) The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, {2} to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor and the day of vengeance of our God, to comfort all who mourn, {3} and provide for those who grieve in Zion– to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair. They will be called oaks of righteousness, a planting of the LORD for the display of his splendor.
(Psalms 84:11-12 NIV) For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless. {12} O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.
(Psalms 68:19-20 NIV) Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Selah {20} Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign LORD comes escape from death.
(Psalms 62:7-8 NIV) My salvation and my honor depend on God ; he is my mighty rock, my refuge. {8} Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge. Selah.
(Psalms 54:4 NIV) Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.
(2 Corinthians 9:8 NIV) And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.
(1 John 4:7-9 NIV) Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. {8} Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. {9} This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.”
Ezekiel 37:9 “Then He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD, “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they come to life.”

But What was God’s Intention from the Beginning?

What we mean by that is God’s intention at the very beginning, long before the fall took place. To learn that, we need to study the creation and at the top of it, God himself.

So, Who is God?

(John 4:24 NIV) God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”

(1 John 1:5 NIV) This is the message we have heard from him and declare to you: God is light; in him there is no darkness at all.

(1 John 4:7-9 NIV) Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. {8} Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. ”

(1 John 4:16 NIV) And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in him.

(Revelation 21:3 NIV) And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.”

(Matthew 12:28 NIV) But if I drive out demons by the Spirit of God, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

Genesis 1:2 “The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.”

Genesis 6:3 “Then the LORD said, “My Spirit shall not strive with man forever, because he also is flesh; nevertheless his days shall be one hundred and twenty years.”

Genesis 41:38 “Then Pharaoh said to his servants, “Can we find a man like this, in whom is a divine spirit?”

Exodus 31:3 “I have filled him with the Spirit of God in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds of craftsmanship.”

(Deuteronomy 4:24 NIV) For the LORD your God is a consuming fire…

Job 32:8 “But it is a spirit in man, And the breath of the Almighty gives them understanding.

Job 33:4“The Spirit of God has made me, And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.

Psalm 139:7 “Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence?”

Isaiah 42:1“Behold, My Servant, whom I uphold; My chosen one in whom My soul delights I have put My Spirit upon Him; He will bring forth justice to the nations.

Ezekiel 36:27 “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

 

This article is in the process of being written.

 

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