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Featured What do you think happens when we die

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by dfnj, Feb 3, 2018.

  1. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    I already covered what I believe the soul is in a previous post. Here are some other things about the soul that I wrote up and posted to others:

    The soul comes into being at the moment of conception and it animates the human body. The body needs a soul or it cannot live, but the soul does not need a body, so it continues to exist after the body dies. The body is destructible and temporary so eventually it dies; the soul is indestructible and eternal so it lives forever in the spiritual world.

    The soul is the sum total of the personality so it is the person himself; the physical body is pure matter with no real identity. The person, after he dies and leaves his physical body behind remains the same person, and he goes to the spiritual world where he continues the life he conducted in the physical world. The soul takes on some kind of a spiritual form made up of heavenly elements that exist in the spiritual world. We cannot possibly know what that world is like, which is one reason what no religious scriptures have ever described it. It is a Mystery of God.

    The soul is our true identity. The soul communicates its desires through the brain to the physical body, which thereby expresses itself. The body is just a vehicle that carries the soul around while we are alive on earth, a place to house the soul. The soul is our self, our true reality; the body is just our outer shell.

    The nature of the soul is a mystery no human mind will ever unravel.

    “Thou hast asked Me concerning the nature of the soul. Know, verily, that the soul is a sign of God, a heavenly gem whose reality the most learned of men hath failed to grasp, and whose mystery no mind, however acute, can ever hope to unravel. It is the first among all created things to declare the excellence of its Creator, the first to recognize His glory, to cleave to His truth, and to bow down in adoration before Him. If it be faithful to God, it will reflect His light, and will, eventually, return unto Him. If it fail, however, in its allegiance to its Creator, it will become a victim to self and passion, and will, in the end, sink in their depths...” Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, pp. 158-159

    We cannot know the nature of the soul but we can know the function of the soul.

    The soul cannot be perceived in the material world except as it is expressed in outward signs and works. The human body is visible, the soul is invisible. Nevertheless, it is the soul that directs human faculties. As outer circumstances are communicated to the soul by the eyes, ears, and brain, the soul communicates its desires through the brain to the physical body, which thereby expresses itself.
    I do not know what Gehenna is according to Baha’i belief. You would have to ask another Baha’i who knows the Bible better than me. As an entity, the soul is indestructible but it can be lost in the sense of having gone stray and losing eternal life:

    Matthew 16:24-26 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
    16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    Everlasting life is eternal life and it is explained here what that means: 60: THE IMMORTALITY OF THE SPIRIT (1)

    All souls continue to exist in the spiritual world but they are deprived of eternal life if they are distant from God. The way to get close to God is through a Manifestation of God, which was Jesus in His dispensation. We can now get close to God through Baha’u’llah and gain eternal life:

    John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

    1 John 5:13 I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life.

    Likewise, Baha’u’llah wrote...

    “The Book of God is wide open, and His Word is summoning mankind unto Him. No more than a mere handful, however, hath been found willing to cleave to His Cause, or to become the instruments for its promotion. These few have been endued with the Divine Elixir that can, alone, transmute into purest gold the dross of the world, and have been empowered to administer the infallible remedy for all the ills that afflict the children of men. No man can obtain everlasting life, unless he embraceth the truth of this inestimable, this wondrous, and sublime Revelation.” Gleanings, p. 183
    I cannot get into parts of the Bible for which I do not know the Baha’i interpretation, but I do not believe the soul of Adam dies because the soul cannot die; it can only be distant from God in this life and the afterlife. I do not believe in “The Fall” so I do not believe that all the sins of humanity are on Adam: 30: ADAM AND EVE
    Did it ever occur to you that you have interpreted the Bible incorrectly and Jesus is not going to return? Did it ever occur to you that there is a new rock? If you are wrong, there will be no second chances. :(
     
  2. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    My belief is that all written communication from God ceased when we had the complete Bible (ending with the Revelation and writings of John, the last apostle)....both the Hebrew Scriptures and the Christian writings tell us one story. We need both for the complete picture to be understood.

    Paul wrote...."For we have partial knowledge and we prophesy partially, 10 but when what is complete comes, what is partial will be done away with. 11 When I was a child, I used to speak as a child, to think as a child, to reason as a child; but now that I have become a man, I have done away with the traits of a child. . . Now, however, these three remain: faith, hope, love; but the greatest of these is love."

    Mature Christians manifest these traits, no longer needing the milk of God's word, but graduating to solid spiritual food. (1 Corinthians 13:11-13; Hebrews 5:12-14)

    We believe that the last prophet was Jesus Christ...Hebrews 1:1-2..."Long ago God spoke to our forefathers by means of the prophets on many occasions and in many ways. 2 Now at the end of these days he has spoken to us by means of a Son..."

    When Jesus was to come again, it was to take the remaining members of the "chosen ones" to heaven to rule with him (metaphorically called his "bride") and these will rule over redeemed mankind on earth (Revelation 21:2-4; Revelation 20:6)....and he will judge mankind with a view to rewarding them or evicting them. (Matthew 25:31-33)

    Your Faith in Baha’u’llah is commendable, but we do not believe that he is anything to do with Jesus Christ.

    He did not come close to fulfilling anything that the Christ promised to carry out. He is of interest only to Baha'is. His words mean nothing to us.

    We too cannot commit ourselves to God until the age when we are mature enough to be accountable.

    I was raised as an Anglican but soon came to see the whole church system as a gigantic fraud....they were teaching things that were not from the scriptures. Like the Pharisees of Jesus' day, they clung to man-made traditions and did not practice what they preached. I became a JW in my twenties after an intensive 2 year study of the Bible. It changed my life.

    Unless you teach what Jesus taught you cannot understand the basis for his first appearance. The Old Testament as you call it, was all the scripture Jesus had to teach his apostles. He changed nothing in those teachings because God does not change and his law was perfect. The Hebrew scriptures were the foundation upon which Christianity was built. Nothing is superseded...it is just better understood as God's day of reckoning gets closer. (Proverbs 4:18)
     
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  3. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    We do not believe that this life was planned for us. This life is not a test or a qualifier for heaven. This life is the result of God allowing humankind under the devil's influence to experience the full consequence of the choice they made in Eden. They believed a liar and fell in to his trap. There is now rebellion and disobedience in God's family of free willed sons (both in heaven and on earth) and this is why we suffer. We can see first hand what happens when sons rebel and leave their father, to do their own thing, independently.

    Are you familiar with the parable of the prodigal son? (Luke 15:11-32) When the younger son demanded his inheritance so that he could leave the family to determine his own course in life, his father gave him his share and simply let him go. The son squandered his money on immorality and false friends who all disappeared when his money ran out. He soon found himself destitute and hungry. Only then did he realize, after he had lost his whole inheritance, how well off he had been in his father's house. He came to his senses and realized that his father's hired hands were better off than he was, and if he stayed where he was, he would probably die because no one cared about him. He determined to return to his father and humble himself, asking to be treated like one of the hired men. As he was returning home, his father saw him in the distance and ran out to meet him with open arms and thanked God that his son had returned to him. The son asked that his father allow him to live and be treated as one of his workers, but the father would not hear of it and threw a big feast in honor of his return.

    What does this parable teach us? First of all that our inheritance (our life) is ours to do with as we choose. God allows us to 'spend' that in inheritance however we want. The choices we make will have a big effect on the way our lives will turn out. We may suffer because of our own bad choices, or someone else's.....but if we learn from the consequences of those choices, we will not want to make them again....or we can go on making bad choices and mess up our lives completely. God will not interfere.

    It teaches us that sometime we are better off than we realize and we can lose everything that is important to us by thinking we know better than our father. Its a hard lesson, but we have no one to blame but ourselves.

    Parents never stop loving their children and if they leave, parents always hope that they will come "home". But they can't force them to.

    You will notice that the Father in the parable did not argue with his son, but quietly gave him what he asked for and let him go. He did not try to find him or to persuade him to do anything....he left it all up to him. This is what I believe this life is all about. Its about God providing a safe and happy environment in his house for his children to grow up and feel safe. But if they rebel, his allowing his children to experience what it means to 'leave home' and spend their inheritance, can teach them valuable lessons.

    Our parents want us to remember all the things they instilled in us and to remain in their house under their protection....God is the same...but he will not stop us from leaving, nor will he chase after us. If we fall on hard times and remember the security of being in his family and want to return, a humble spirit is required and we will be welcomed back.

    I believe that God created this world with no pain or suffering originally. It was the rebels who got us kicked out of that world and in to this one. We have God's promise that all will return to they way it was meant to be once all the lessons are learned and precedents are set.

    The Christian scriptures were written by and for the "chosen ones". It was these ones whom God chose to rule with Christ in heaven. They will be priests and kings (Revelation 20:6) which presumes that they will have subjects as well as sinners for whom to perform their duties as priests.

    I'm afraid I don't understand what you mean here....? What do you have that is "very frightening"?
     
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  4. Derek500

    Derek500 Wish I could change this to AUD

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    It depends on how deep we're buried. Six feet deep basically worm and baterial food. Left on the surface in the country I live in, basicaly vulture and other carniferous food.
     
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  5. Thief

    Thief Rogue Theologian

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    only tow possibilities.....you follow your body into the grave.....or
    you stand from your carcass

    if you stand....heaven will decide what happens next
     
  6. 'mud

    'mud ~~ Life is Stuff ~~
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    ~~ LIFE ~~
    hey Thief,
    Do `souls` have feet ?
    Stand up ???
    or......float away...what is it ?
     
  7. URAVIP2ME

    URAVIP2ME Veteran Member

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    In a nut shell, so to speak, there are those, according to Revelation 20:6, who I find have a first or earlier resurrection over the majority of mankind. They have a heavenly resurrection to that heavenly spirit world.
    Whereas, the majority of mankind will be awakened from death's sleep ( Not any bodies from the graves, some have No graves ) but a returning to life of the dead person in a perfectly healthy physical body on Earth.
    So, the Bible speaks of two (2) different resurrections: Some heavenly, and some carnal or fleshly.
    The man named Daniel at Daniel 12:2; Daniel 12:13 looked forward to standing up again on Earth.
    Meaning Daniel will be part of the humble meek people who will inherit the Earth as Jesus promised at Matthew 5:5.

    Those resurrected to that spirit world, aka heaven, have two (2) jobs to do as per Revelation 5:9-10.
    What it is like is that they are to serve mankind living on Earth as *kings* and *priests*.
    As heavenly *kings* they will take care of governmental responsibilites towards people living on Earth.
    As heavenly *priests* they will take care of spiritual duties towards people living on Earth.
    That to me is what the coming 1,000-year governmental rule of Christ over Earth is about.
    The wicked will be gone as mentioned at Psalms 37:9-11; Proverbs 2:21-22.
    God will bring to ruin those ruining Earth as per Revelation 11:18 B.
     
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  8. Sha'irullah

    Sha'irullah رسول الآلهة

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    I can only hope I can be judged by the gods and cleansed of my human frailty. I wish to be the most ardent servant amongst whom I pray to. It would not bother me if I was brought back unto this Earth and made a fungus, a fly or a disease just as long as I play my part.
     
  9. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for sharing your beliefs. :)

    I have a completely different interpretation of the Bible verses so I do not believe in any physical resurrection of bodies. Physical bodies are not intended to live on earth past the time that they die physically. I believe that all resurrections are spiritual and they happen in every new age when God sends a new Messenger, which Baha’is refer to as a Manifestation of God.

    As it says in the passage below, “Resurrection is the birth of the individual to spiritual life, through the gift of the Holy Spirit bestowed through the Manifestation of God. The grave from which he arises is the grave of ignorance and negligence of God. The sleep from which he awakens is the dormant spiritual condition in which many await the dawn of the Day of God.”

    Resurrection, Paradise, and Hell

    “An important part of the Báb’s teaching is His explanation of the terms Resurrection, Day of Judgment, Paradise and Hell. By the Resurrection is meant, He said, the appearance of a new Manifestation of the Sun of Truth. The raising of the dead means the spiritual awakening of those who are asleep in the graves of ignorance, heedlessness and lust. The Day of Judgment is the Day of the new Manifestation, by acceptance or rejection of Whose Revelation the sheep are separated from the goats, for the sheep know the voice of the Good Shepherd and follow Him. Paradise is the joy of knowing and loving God, as revealed through His Manifestation, thereby attaining to the utmost perfection of which one is capable, and, after death, obtaining entrance to the Kingdom of God and the life everlasting. Hell is simply deprivation of that knowledge of God with consequent failure to attain divine perfection, and loss of the Eternal Favor. He definitely declared that these terms have no real meaning apart from this; and that the prevalent ideas regarding the resurrection of the material body, a material heaven and hell, and the like, are mere figments of the imagination. He taught that man has a life after death, and that in the afterlife progress towards perfection is limitless.” Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, pp. 20-21

    The Great Resurrection

    The Day of Judgment is also the Day of Resurrection, of the raising of the dead. St. Paul in his First Epistle to the Corinthians says:—

    Behold, I shew you a mystery; We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed. For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.—I Cor. xv, 51–53.

    As to the meaning of these passages about the raising of the dead, Bahá’u’lláh writes in the Book of Íqán:—

    … By the terms “life” and “death,” spoken of in the scriptures, is intended the life of faith and the death of unbelief. The generality of the people, owing to their failure to grasp the meaning of these words, rejected and despised the person of the Manifestation, deprived themselves of the light of His divine guidance, and refused to follow the example of that immortal Beauty. …

    … Even as Jesus said: “Ye must be born again” [John iii, 7]. Again He saith: “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the Kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit” [John iii, 5–6]. The purpose of these words is that whosoever in every dispensation is born of the Spirit and is quickened by the breath of the Manifestation of Holiness, he verily is of those that have attained unto “life” and “resurrection” and have entered into the “paradise” of the love of God. And whosoever is not of them, is condemned to “death” and “deprivation,” to the “fire” of unbelief, and to the “wrath” of God. …

    In every age and century, the purpose of the Prophets of God and their chosen ones hath been no other but to affirm the spiritual significance of the terms “life,” “resurrection,” and “judgment.” … Wert thou to attain to but a dewdrop of the crystal waters of divine knowledge, thou wouldst readily realize that true life is not the life of the flesh but the life of the spirit. For the life of the flesh is common to both men and animals, whereas the life of the spirit is possessed only by the pure in heart who have quaffed from the ocean of faith and partaken of the fruit of certitude. This life knoweth no death, and this existence is crowned by immortality. Even as it hath been said: “He who is a true believer liveth both in this world and in the world to come.” If by “life” be meant this earthly life, it is evident that death must needs overtake it.—Kitáb-i-Íqán, pp. 114, 118, 120–21.

    According to the Bahá’í teaching the Resurrection has nothing to do with the gross physical body. That body, once dead, is done with. It becomes decomposed and its atoms will never be recomposed into the same body.

    Resurrection is the birth of the individual to spiritual life, through the gift of the Holy Spirit bestowed through the Manifestation of God. The grave from which he arises is the grave of ignorance and negligence of God. The sleep from which he awakens is the dormant spiritual condition in which many await the dawn of the Day of God. This dawn illumines all who have lived on the face of the earth, whether they are in the body or out of the body, but those who are spiritually blind cannot perceive it. The Day of Resurrection is not a day of twenty-four hours, but an era which has now begun and will last as long as the present world cycle continues. It will continue when all traces of the present civilization will have been wiped off the surface of the globe.”

    Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era, pp. 220-222
     
  10. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    My belief is that written communication from God will never end. The Qur’an and the Baha’i Revelation are from God. There will be more Messengers of God in the future, throughout all eternity.
    The same man Jesus is not going to return. Jesus never promised to return in the same body, not once. Christians just wanted that so they thought that is what some verses meant, but they had to completely misconstrue verses to make them mean what they wanted. Jesus said he would send His Spirit in John 14, 15 and 16, but that is not the same thing as returning in the same body. A physical body cannot come back to life and ascend to the sky as there is no atmosphere up there.

    It was the Christ Spirit that ascended, not His body, and that is what the angels saw in Acts 1:10-11. That makes perfect sense since angels can see spirits. Descending from heaven upon the clouds means that the spirit of Jesus, the Christ Spirit, will be made manifest from the heaven of the will of God and will appear in the form of the human temple. Though delivered from the womb of Mary, Jesus in reality descended from the heaven of the will of God, so Baha’u’llah descended in like manner, from the heaven of the will of God.

    If God intended the Bible to say that Jesus would return then why didn’t Jesus say He would return? Jesus never said He would return, never.. He said His work was finished here and He was no more in the world (John 17:4, John 17:11). He said you would see the Son of man come down from the clouds of heaven; He did not say “you will see me come down from the clouds of heaven.” Jesus was the Son of man but Baha’u’llah was the return of the Son of man, because He had the same Spirit.
    I already know that Baha’u’llah means nothing to Christians. If He did, they would be Baha’is. ;) Baha’u’llah fulfilled all the prophecies for the Return of Christ and all the Messianic prophecies will be fulfilled during the Messianic Age. William Sears, Thief in the Night
    My father was raised in the Anglican Church and later became a nonbeliever. He died before he heard about the Baha’i Faith. My mother was raised Greek Orthodox and dropped out of the Church and later became a Baha’i, Besides the belief that Jesus is God, how are JW beliefs any different from other Christian beliefs? Trinitarians claim their interpretation of the Bible is right and that JWs and Mormons are heretics. All these different kinds of Christians are reading the same Bible. If the Bible meaning is so clear, why do Christians disagree? :confused:
    Why do Christians have a different Bible than Jews? Jews have the Torah/Tanakh and Christians have the Old Testament. According to Jews I talk with on another forum, Christians changed the scriptures to make it appear as if Jesus was the Messiah. Jesus was “a Messiah” but clearly Jesus was not the Messiah of the Old Testament. Sure, you can say that Jesus will fulfill fulfill those prophecies when He returns but the problem is Jesus has not returned and there is no reason to believe He ever will. This was a Christian hope, a fantasy, and one that has caused harm to humanity, because Christians believe that Jesus will do everything to fix the problems in the world when He returns... but still no Jesus. They just keep pushing the date forward, one more year....;)

    God’s Day for reckoning has already come.

    “Great indeed is this Day! The allusions made to it in all the sacred Scriptures as the Day of God attest its greatness. The soul of every Prophet of God, of every Divine Messenger, hath thirsted for this wondrous Day. All the divers kindreds of the earth have, likewise, yearned to attain it. No sooner, however, had the Day Star of His Revelation manifested itself in the heaven of God’s Will, than all, except those whom the Almighty was pleased to guide, were found dumbfounded and heedless.” Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 11
     
  11. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    I do not believe in the Fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden so I do not believe in Original Sin. I do not believe there is an entity called Satan, but rather that Satan represents the lower selfish and material nature of man:

    “Observe that if, according to the suppositions of the People of the Book, 7 the meaning were taken in its exoteric sense, it would be absolute injustice and complete predestination. If Adam sinned by going near the forbidden tree, what was the sin of the glorious Abraham, and what was the error of Moses the Interlocutor? What was the crime of Noah the Prophet? What was the transgression of Joseph the Truthful? What was the iniquity of the Prophets of God, and what was the trespass of John the Chaste? Would the justice of God have allowed these enlightened Manifestations, on account of the sin of Adam, to find torment in hell until Christ came and by the sacrifice of Himself saved them from excruciating tortures? Such an idea is beyond every law and rule and cannot be accepted by any intelligent person.

    No; it means what has already been said: Adam is the spirit of Adam, and Eve is His soul; the tree is the human world, and the serpent is that attachment to this world which constitutes sin, and which has infected the descendants of Adam. Christ by His holy breezes saved men from this attachment and freed them from this sin. . The sin in Adam is relative to His position. Although from this attachment there proceed results, nevertheless, attachment to the earthly world, in relation to attachment to the spiritual world, is considered as a sin. The good deeds of the righteous are the sins of the Near Ones. This is established. So bodily power is not only defective in relation to spiritual power; it is weakness in comparison. In the same way, physical life, in comparison with eternal life in the Kingdom, is considered as death. So Christ called the physical life death, and said: “Let the dead bury their dead.” 8 Though those souls possessed physical life, yet in His eyes that life was death.

    This is one of the meanings of the biblical story of Adam. Reflect until you discover the others.”

    Some Answered Questions, pp. 125-126
    I agree with all of that. :)
    As I said before, I do not believe that we will ever go back to the Garden of Eden and live on earth in a paradise. ;)
    I do not want to argue about what scriptures mean. I do not know where these interpretations originated but clearly, we disagree.
    If people die and they lived for the things of the flesh and relied upon those for their happiness and they suddenly realize that they no longer have a physical body, but rather a spiritual body, then they will have no way to gratify their desires. The following excerpt from a book written by a spirit communicator depicts hell as I think it might be like. It is not a place; it is a state of mind (soul). Please note that this is not a Baha’i Writing as we have no real depictions of hell in our Writings, although we have a pretty good idea because we are told that hell is a lack of spiritual qualities and distance from God.

    “All this my brother told me afterwards. Those who die filled with thoughts of selfishness and sensuality are attracted down the grey avenues toward this hell of the senses. The darkness of the deep forests appalls, the loneliness is intense. At last, light is seen ahead. It is not the light of heaven, it is the lure of hell. These poor souls hasten onwards, though not toward destruction; there is no such thing. They hasten down into conditions that are the counterpart of their own interior condition. The Law is at work. This hell is a hell of the illusions and is itself an illusion. I find this hard to credit. Those who enter it are led to believe that the only realities are the sense passions and the beliefs of the human 'I'. This hell consists in believing the unreal to be real. It consists in the lure of the senses without the possibility of gratifying them. I was told a great deal more about this awful region, but I must not pass it on. The angel said that the 'condition' would ultimately dissolve into nothingness. Hell or apparently that part of it we are speaking about, depends for its existence on human thoughts and feelings. The race will never rise to greatness until the passions are controlled. This refers to nations and to individuals. On earth I was never interested in such matters. I did not realise the existence of the sexual canker at the heart of human life. What a terrible thing this is! Do not wait until you come over here. Set to work at once. There is no time to lose. Gain control of self. Then retain control by emptying yourself of self. All the thoughts of lust and passion, greed, hatred, envy, and, above all, selfishness, passing through the minds of men and women, generate the 'condition' called hell.

    Purgatory and hell are different states. We all must needs pass through a purging, purifying process after leaving earth life. I am still in purgatory. Some day I shall rise above it. The majority who come over here rise above or rather THROUGH purgatory into higher conditions. A minority refuse to relinquish their thoughts and beliefs in the pleasures of sin and the reality of the sense life. They sink by the weight of their own thoughts. No outside power can attract a man against his will. A man sinks or rises through the action of a spiritual law of gravity. He is never safe until he has emptied himself completely. You see how I emphasise this fact. Some of these thoughts came to me whilst I waited in that gloomy forest. Then the angel and my brother returned. They had found him for whom they sought. He would not come away. They had to leave him there. Fear held him. He said his existence was awful, but he was afraid to move lest worse conditions should befall him.”
    Private Dowding, pp. 33-35
     
  12. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    You are, of course free to believe that. But since Jesus said that "salvation originates with the Jews", I have no reason to follow Islam or its scripture.....or yours.

    John 4:21-22....To the Samaritan woman at the well he said..... “Believe me, woman, The hour is coming when neither in this mountain nor in Jerusalem will you people worship the Father. 22 You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, because salvation originates with the Jews."

    Jesus was Jewish.....not Muslim, not Bah'ai. His disciples were to separate from Judaism because there was nothing that could be reconciled in their teachings. The Pharisees taught from their tradition and Jesus spoke from scripture. I follow the teachings of the Christ.

    I never said he would. Christendom can't make up its mind about Jesus' resurrection. Was it bodily or in spirit? JW's do not believe that Jesus was raised in the body. We believe that he was raised "in the spirit" as Peter confirmed. (1 Peter 3:18)

    We believe that his "presence" as king was discernible by a sign that he gave to indicate that he was ruling in his Kingdom, (Matthew 24:3) directing the greatest preaching campaign the world has ever seen.....but rather than being visible, it was to be identified by a number of world events all in one time period called in the book of Daniel "the time of the end". (Daniel 12:4) By the time Christ visibly manifests himself at the end of this present system of things, it will be to judge mankind and to separate them into the only two categories there are..."sheep" and "goats". (Matthew 25:31-33) One group lives....the other dies.

    Jesus was not raised in a physical body. He will never be a human again. His earthly mission is complete. He is now a heavenly King about to take over the reins of earthly rulership to finish what God began in Eden. (Isaiah 55:11)

    I understand that that is your belief but it does not fit the scriptural model at all.
    In the Bible spirits could manifest themselves in the flesh. It isn't that angels can see spirits....it is that angels (spirits) can materialize and dematerialize human form at will. Three of them visited Abraham at Mamre and Lot in Sodom. They ate and drank like any other humans. One acted as God's spokesman. (Genesis 18)

    What Jesus' apostles saw in Acts ch 1, was a spirit in a materialized body. He simply rose from the ground, dematerialized as a cloud obscured him from view, and returned to heaven.The angels said he would return in the same manner as they saw him leaving. It was witnessed only by his closest companions, it was not visible to the world in general.

    Who told you that?

    John 14:2-3....Jesus said...."In the house of my Father are many dwelling places. Otherwise, I would have told you, for I am going my way to prepare a place for you. 3 Also, if I go my way and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will receive you home to myself, so that where I am you also may be."

    He was going to prepare a place for his disciples in the house of his Father and return to take them "home" with him.
     
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  13. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    You can believe that if you wish. I do not. Who has ever heard of Baha’u’llah? I don't even know how to pronounce his name! .....now tell me who hasn't heard of Jesus Christ?

    Perhaps.....but I wouldn't count on it.

    Such as....?

    Actually, JW's do not believe that Jesus is God. He is the son of God.....the "only begotten son of God" and the one sent forth by God....but he never once said he was God.

    The various denominations of Christendom disagree.....but we are no part of Christendom. We hold no beliefs in common with most of them. Jesus was Jewish but denounced the Jewish sects because they taught different things....Christendom is the mirror image of Judaism....falling into sectarianism by following men, and clinging to man-made tradition over the word of God. Jesus and his apostles foretold a falling away in Christianity, just as it happened in the Jewish religion.

    Jews will not accept Jesus as Messiah because it makes them into the murderers of their own savior. Of course they are going to find excuses not to acknowledge him. But no man will ever come who fulfills the Messianic promises better than Jesus did. He has yet to establish his Kingdom on earth, but world events indicate that it is closer than ever. (Matthew 24:3-14)

    He is here already, ruling "in the midst of his enemies" (Psalm 110:1-2) and backing a world-wide preaching work just as he said he would. (Matthew 24:14; 28:19-20) The end has not come yet, but it will. (Matthew 24:36-39)

    "This is a proof of the righteous judgment of God, leading to your being counted worthy of the Kingdom of God, for which you are indeed suffering.
    6 This takes into account that it is righteous on God’s part to repay tribulation to those who make tribulation for you. 7 But you who suffer tribulation will be given relief along with us at the revelation of the Lord Jesus from heaven with his powerful angels 8 in a flaming fire, as he brings vengeance on those who do not know God and those who do not obey the good news about our Lord Jesus. 9 These very ones will undergo the judicial punishment of everlasting destruction from before the Lord and from the glory of his strength"
    ( 2 Thessalonians 1:5-9)

    I believe that you will see very spectacular events in the not too distant future that will change your mind. The Bible's prophesies will be fulfilled. (Revelation 1:7; Isaiah 55:11)
     
    #113 Deeje, Feb 6, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2018
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  14. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    As Jehovah’s people, we are ‘well-fed’, so to speak, aren’t we! When you read Luke 10:21, you see why.

    You might enjoy this, Deeje. It’s from ‘2001Translation.com :

    http://www.2001translation.com/NOTES.htm#_165

    (This website has no connection with JW.com, but many [not all] of their links are enlightening [they’ve restored the Divine Name, even in some of the Greek Scriptures], and I find it helpful to post from sites that aren’t link to us....more might read it.)
     
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  15. Kelly of the Phoenix

    Kelly of the Phoenix Well-Known Member

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    Who heard of him at the time?

    But Romans killed him.
     
  16. Nakosis

    Nakosis crystal soldier
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    I've got two, actually 3 possibilities.

    One, we cease to exist.

    Two, we wake up to realize our entire life was just a dream, nothing of what happen here was real.

    Three, we start another dream/life with little to no remembrance of our past existence.

    While I suspect the first is the reality, I could work with either number two or three as well.

    Regardless, whatever we did, or didn't do in this life becomes irrelevant after we die.
     
  17. Deeje

    Deeje Avid Bible Student
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    Everyone who came to hear him preach...thousands at a time. Since it was only by word of mouth (no phones or internet) then it was quite an achievement to be as well known in such a short time.

    Have you not read the gospel accounts?

    It was the Romans who drove the nails, but it was the Jews who made the accusations and held an illegal trial with false witnesses to convict Jesus of breaking their law. Since they had no right under Roman law to execute anyone, they had him arrested and Pilate interrogated him and then presented the man to the Jewish mob as one who was innocent of any capital crime. When the Jews clamored for his execution, he then washed his hands of innocent blood when he realized that these Jews were going to report him to Caesar for treason. He threw in a flogging for good measure and did as they demanded.

    "Pilate said to them, “Then what shall I do with Jesus who is called Christ?” They all said, “Crucify Him!” 23 And he said, “Why, what evil has He done?” But they kept shouting all the more, saying, “Crucify Him!”
    24 When Pilate saw that he was accomplishing nothing, but rather that a riot was starting, he took water and washed his hands in front of the crowd, saying, “I am innocent of this Man’s blood; see to that yourselves.” 25 And all the people said, “His blood shall be on us and on our children!”
    (Matthew 27:22-25; John 18:29-31; John 19:1-7; 12-16)

    The death of Jesus is laid squarely at the feet of the corrupt Pharisees.
     
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  18. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    That is interesting. Jesus’ disciples had to separate from Judaism because there was nothing that could be reconciled in their teachings. The Pharisees taught from their tradition and Jesus spoke from scripture.

    The Pharisees were attached to their religious traditions and that is why they rejected the “new teachings” of Jesus. Baha’u’llah was born into a Muslim culture and He was a Muslim, just as Jesus was born into a Jewish culture and was a Jew. So Baha’u’llah was to Islam as Jesus was to Judaism. The Muslims were attached to their religious traditions and that is why they rejected the “new teachings” of the Bab and Baha’u’llah. They persecuted the Bab and Baha’u’llah for the same reasons as the Pharisees condemned Jesus. They were attached to their former Prophet Muhammad and to their religious traditions.

    History repeats itself. Jews and Christians reject the “new teachings” of the Baha’i Faith because they are attached to religious tradition. Just think about it. If all the Jews had rejected Jesus His Cause never would have survived and thrived and there would be no Christianity. Thank God not all Muslims rejected Baha’u’llah and there were a few who carried His Cause far and wide, just as the early Christians carried the Cause of Jesus far and wide.

    I am glad you follow the teachings of Jesus, but the teachings of Jesus are not the teachings of Paul. Paul started His own religion and changed the course of Christianity.

    I follow the teachings of Baha’u’llah, since Baha’u’llah is God’s Manifestation for this new age.
    “quickened by the Spirit” could mean many things. I agree that Jesus was raised in Spirit, but this verse means something different to most Christians who believe that Jesus’ body rose from the dead.

    I did not know that JWs believed that. Most of Christianity has made up its mind so you are sure swimming against the tide, a tide is going in the wrong direction. This is what Baha’is believe about the resurrection: 23: THE RESURRECTION OF CHRIST
    So you believe that Jesus was ruling in spirit from the Mount of Olives after the crucifixion, or is that where you believe Jesus is now? If He has no body, how is Jesus going to visibly manifest himself at the end of this present system of things? So who are the sheep and who are the goats and what are the criteria by which they are judged?

    Here is what I believe about Daniel Chapter 12. Christians have misconstrued much of the Bible because God never intended the Bible to be fully understood until the time of the end:

    Daniel Chapter 12:4 But thou, O Daniel, shut up the words, and seal the book, even to the time of the end: many shall run to and fro, and knowledge shall be increased. 8 And I heard, but I understood not: then said I, O my Lord, what shall be the end of these things? 9 And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end. 12Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.

    The early Church fathers simply interpreted the Bible the way they did because they could not understand it. As Daniel said in Chapter 12:9 “And he said, Go thy way, Daniel: for the words are closed up and sealed till the time of the end.”

    The “unsealing” was not supposed to take place until the time of the end: Daniel 12:12 “Blessed is he that waiteth, and cometh to the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days.”

    The 2,300 years was up in 1844 and the book was unsealed. There is a starting point from which the waiting in Dan 12:12 began, so if one knows how to do the math, the thousand three hundred and five and thirty days comes out to the exact year the Bab came to announce the coming of Baha’u’llah. This and the math is explained by Abdu’l-Baha in Some Answered Questions, 10: TRADITIONAL PROOFS EXEMPLIFIED FROM THE BOOK OF DANIEL.

    There is a consistent core to scripture but only a Manifestation of God can know what that is... Baha’u’llah knew what the Bible meant because He was a Manifestation of God... That is what Daniel 12 was all about, that the “book” would be unsealed at the time of the end when Christ returned... Before that, people would run to and fro and not understand the Bible, and that is why Christianity is so divided to this very day...
    I agree with that in part. Jesus was not raised in a physical body and He will never be a human again. His earthly mission was to spiritualize humanity and thereby prepare the way for the Messiah who would complete His mission. Jesus’ mission was completed before He died and went to heaven, so there is no reason for Jesus to return to earth.

    So I guess you believe that Jesus is the Messiah of the Old Testament. I of course believe Baha’u’llah was that Messiah, the Return of the Christ Spirit, the Promised one of all religions and ages. Some OT prophecies referred to Jesus but the prophecies for the Messiah of the latter days refer to Baha’u’llah.

    Isaiah 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

    That verseis very vague. Don’t you understand that verse is not at all clear in its meaning and that different Christians could interpret it totally differently? And they will all say that they are right. :)
    There is no scriptural model. There are just Christians running to and fro thinking they “know” what the Bible verses mean, but in many cases they are wrong, which is self-evident by the fact that they cannot agree on what the verses mean, after over 2000 years. ;)

    I do not know the Bible well enough to know all the details and it does not really matter now because we have new scriptures now, the Writings of Baha’u’llah. I do not believe that people rise from the ground and materialize into a body because that goes against science. I know the usual retort to that is that “God can do anything because God is omnipotent” but what it all boils down to is how verses are interpreted. Christians cannot even agree what they mean, but now that the Book has been unsealed by Baha’u’llah, Baha’is know what they mean and what they do not mean. Simply put, after Jesus died on the cross His soul ascended to heaven and that is where it is now, at the Right Hand of God, along with the souls of all the other Manifestations of God who have died, including Baha’u’llah. That is where we will all go when we die and we will see Jesus or Baha’u’llah if we are worthy to meet Them. There is no reason to stay on this earth after the body dies, and we can’t because the body will be dead. Bodies do not rise from graves.
    Return to earth to take the disciples to heaven? How can that be, since the disciples died about 2000 years ago? Are they supposed to rise from their graves and ascend to heaven too? Do you wonder why there are so many people dropping out of Christianity and becoming nonbelievers? It is because they cannot believe what goes against science, and this is the Age of Reason. Saying “but it’s in the Bible” no longer cuts it because the Bible is the writings of men and there is no way to verify that anything in it ever happened as it was recorded.
     
  19. Trailblazer

    Trailblazer Well-Known Member

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    Sure, over 2,000 years after Jesus walked the earth everyone now knows who He was. :) It is true that a lot of people have not yet heard of Baha’u’llah but not that many people had heard of Jesus either, 165 years after He walked the earth:

    Just how small was the Christian movement in the first century is clear from the calculations of the sociologist R Stark (1996:5-7; so too Hopkins 1998:192-193). Stark begins his analysis with a rough estimation of six million Christians in the Roman Empire (or about ten percent of the total population) at the start of the fourth century... There were 1,000 Christians in the year 40, 1 400 Christians in 50, 1 960 Christians in 60, 2 744 Christians in 70, 3 842 Christians in 80, 5 378 Christians in 90 and 7 530 Christians at the end of the first century.

    These figures are very suggestive, and reinforce the point that in its initial decades the Christian movement represented a tiny fraction of the ancient world.”How many Jews became Christians in the first century?

    The fact that you have not heard of Baha’u’llah shows that you live in a very small world, cloistered in your own religious community. The Baha’i Faith is a widely recognized world religion. It is still small by comparison to Christianity and Islam, but it is closely trailing Islam in its growth rate. The growth rates from 1910-2010 are as follows: Judaism .11%, Christianity 1.32%, Islam 1.97%, Baha’i 3.54%. Growth of religion - Wikipedia
    I do not count on Christians becoming Baha’is, in fact I count on that they won’t, at least not until we gain more prominence. Then the Christians will feel threatened and they will attack the Baha’i Faith, as this has been predicted. We are waiting for that day because that is when the Baha’i Faith will spread like wildfire. :D
    I suggest you read this book: William Sears, Thief in the Night

    It is online to read. There are also other books and websites that go over the prophecies that were fulfilled as well as videos.
    I fully agree with all of that. I never knew the apostle predicted the falling away of Christianity. Christianity has fallen away from the teachings of Jesus and follows the teachings of men, just like Judaism. I now understand why the Trinitarians call you heretics. They also consider Baha’is heretics because we do not believe Jesus is God, among other things. ;)

    I also agree that Jesus is not God. He never said He was God and most of the doctrines of the Church are false doctrines. Baha’is believe that Jesus was the Son of God and we believe in the Virgin Birth. We believe that the Virgin Birth is a mystery of God and that He was conceived by the Holy Spirit, but not that God was literally Jesus’ Father, since God has no biological Son.

    Jews will not accept Jesus as Messiah because it makes them into the murders of their own savior. Of course they are going to find excuses not to acknowledge him. But no man will ever come who fulfills the Messianic promises better than Jesus did. He has yet to establish his Kingdom on earth, but world events indicate that it is closer than ever. (Matthew 24:3-14)

    I agree that Jesus fulfilled some prophecies for the Messiah but He did not fulfill all the Old Testament Prophecies and that is one reason why many Jews rejected Him. Baha’u’llah fulfilled all the prophecies for the coming of the Messiah and the Return of Christ and the prophecies that refer to what will happen during the Messianic Age will be fulfilled in this new age as the result of what He revealed in His Writings. Baha’is believe that it is humans who will fulfill those prophecies (such as the attainment of world peace) by following the Plans Baha’u’llah laid out. This short video has a few of the prophecies Baha’u’llah fulfilled:


    If that is true, how come Christianity is on the decline? Christians keep saying the end is near but they have been saying that for many years. Now that the world situation continues to worsen, Christians believe that means that the time of the end is near and Jesus is coming. What you see going on in the world today was predicted by Baha’u’llah… As the result of the Coming of Baha’u’llah…

    “This is the Day in which God’s most excellent favors have been poured out upon men, the Day in which His most mighty grace hath been infused into all created things....

    Beseech ye the one true God to grant that all men may be graciously assisted to fulfil that which is acceptable in Our sight. Soon will the present-day order be rolled up, and a new one spread out in its stead. Verily, thy Lord speaketh the truth, and is the Knower of things unseen.” Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, pp. 6-7

    Likewise, Baha’u’llah chastised the Christian clergy for turning away from Him, saying that He was the Return of the Spirit of God (Jesus) and that the Word which the Son concealed (as per John 16:12-13 ) had been made manifest. These are some excerpts from longer Tablets:

    “O kings of Christendom! Heard ye not the saying of Jesus, the Spirit of God, “I go away, and come again unto you”? Wherefore, then, did ye fail, when He did come again unto you in the clouds of heaven, to draw nigh unto Him, that ye might behold His face, and be of them that attained His Presence? In another passage He saith: “When He, the Spirit of Truth, is come, He will guide you into all truth.” Gleanings From the Writings of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 246

    “WE, verily, have come for your sakes, and have borne the misfortunes of the world for your salvation. Flee ye the One Who hath sacrificed His life that ye may be quickened? Fear God, O followers of the Spirit (Jesus), and walk not in the footsteps of every divine that hath gone far astray… Open the doors of your hearts. He Who is the Spirit (Jesus) verily, standeth before them.” Proclamation of Bahá’u’lláh, p, 92

    “The Word which the Son concealed is made manifest. It hath been sent down in the form of the human temple in this day. Blessed be the Lord Who is the Father! He, verily, is come unto the nations in His most great majesty.” Proclamation of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 84

    “This is, truly, that which the Spirit of God (Jesus Christ) hath announced, when He came with truth unto you, He with Whom the Jewish doctors disputed, till at last they perpetrated what hath made the Holy Spirit to lament, and the tears of them that have near access to God to flow….” Proclamation of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 19


    This is the full Tablet to Pope Pius IX: Proclamation of Bahá’u’lláh, p. 83-86

    Similarly, Baha’u’llah chastised the Jews for turning away from Jesus.
    The Bible prophecies have been fulfilled and continue to be fulfilled as we speak… :)

    Revelation 1:7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

    “every eye shall see him” does not refer to physical eyes. It does not mean that the eyes of every human being on earth will see the return of Christ, because obviously this would be impossible. Rather, it means that everyone will know who the return of Christ is.Referring to Baha’u’llah as He whom God shall manifest, the Bab said that eventually the Faith of Baha’u’llah will cover the earth.

    “The object is that when He whom God shall manifest shall appear, all shall have been educated in the Bayán, that none of the believers in the Bayán may remain outside belief in Him; should one do so, the Command concerning him is as the Command concerning him who believeth not in God. I swear by God that in the Manifestation of Him whom God shall manifest all shall unite in helping [the propagation of the Faith], not one will remain on the earth who shall not enter into Paradise.”” (The Persian Bayán, Vahid V, Chapter 4, Momen, p. 364)
     
  20. Hockeycowboy

    Hockeycowboy Well-Known Member
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    .........

    You know, I claim to be a Christian, and I agree with you!
    Because the Bible says that. Jesus indicated that, too. -- John 6:44

    I hope you will read this short article (paragraph, really), and then the linked document, "The Resurrection" (link at end of paragraph).

    http://www.2001translation.com/NOTES.htm#_112

    Another interesting account, is when Job prayed to die, to be relieved of his pain. (Job 14) He asked God, "that You would set a time limit for me, and remember me."
    So he expected that he'd be dead for awhile, but not forever.

    Take care.
     
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