1. Welcome to Religious Forums, a friendly forum to discuss all religions in a friendly surrounding.

    Your voice is missing! You will need to register to get access to the following site features:
    • Reply to discussions and create your own threads.
    • Our modern chat room. No add-ons or extensions required, just login and start chatting!
    • Access to private conversations with other members.

    We hope to see you as a part of our community soon!

Featured Why does god need to test us?

Discussion in 'Religious Debates' started by SigurdReginson, May 16, 2021.

  1. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    I've heard it said that god tests us with the challenges we face in life... But why? What's the point? What's the end goal of this test?

    In known nordic mythologies, Odin takes the best warriors with him to Valhalla to train and get ready to fight in Ragnarok. Their test in life shows their fighting skill so they can be of actual use to the gods in that apocalyptic war. That makes sense to me...

    What about Yahweh, though? What possible reason is there for testing us? What's this test for, and why does he need/want for us to pass it? Why does he care whether or not we pass this test, and why did he even make the test in the first place?
     
    • Like Like x 3
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
    • Useful Useful x 2
  2. lewisnotmiller

    lewisnotmiller Grand Hat
    Staff Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    May 6, 2013
    Messages:
    19,600
    Ratings:
    +11,958
    Religion:
    atheist
    And why is the test so different for each person? I'm no fan of standardized testing, but man...some level of parity would be nice. Well...not nice for me, since I got the cushy ride, in relative terms, but you get the idea.
     
    • Like Like x 7
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
    • Optimistic Optimistic x 1
  3. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2017
    Messages:
    4,519
    Ratings:
    +1,253
    Religion:
    Itiswhatitis
    So you can essentially and basically become one with God. That is become a fit extension for the glory of God. A conduit if you will for the Spirit of God to flow or move through. So if God is the light; you're the lamp. I would venture that it's far better than being cannon fodder in a war against frost giants.
     
    • Like Like x 2
    • Informative Informative x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  4. MatthewA

    MatthewA Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2021
    Messages:
    775
    Ratings:
    +607
    Religion:
    Christian
    You are right about what you are asking about:

    So according to the Lord Jesus Christ himself - He says that a person must take up their own cross: (Matthew 16:24-26) And the disciples went through many challenges, including being put in prison for being Christian. Faced many different challenges going to different provinces, and traveling around the land of Israel, all 12 of the Apostles would go and teach about the good news of the coming of the kingdom the lost sheep of Israel.

    When you ask about suffering or testing of the Faith of a Christian:

    Looking at Romans 5:

    Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, 2 through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; 4 perseverance, character; and character, hope. 5 And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.​

    Suffering for the sake of Christ Jesus - because not everyone will love you, or accept you; also means us today in this life suffer for the sake of Christ because of that when people may not accept you for just simply being a Christian, and believer in God and Jesus Christ. ~ Pray for those people would be the response of a believer.

    Suffering ups and downs of experiences in life; with or without God produces your character: Having God in your life allows a believers character to be conformed into the image of Christ Jesus ~ starting to live by the spirit more; which also produces a person who preservers and continues on having hope and trust in God because of people maybe rejecting you, or not having anything to do with you, or whatever it is. Continue to trust in God and your character of your experience will continue to grow. Hope brings no shame to believer because of the Holy spirit that has been given to them because of their faith, and the Love God has shed into a believers heart.

    There are promises of rewards in heaven; Reward - Thompson Chain Reference - : Suffering endured ~ Notice suffering : Thinking about this word and Christianity is funny because it one of the least expected notions that is of suffering for Christ.

    ~ Though because of Christ Jesus we understand he lives with in us as believers (Galatians 2:20), and because of the holy spirit/spirit of Christ we can have (Galatians 5:19-26), a life by living by the spirit instead of the flesh ~ though it takes faith and some may disagree or not believe any of these things are possible.

    There are promises of eternal life:
    Eternal - Thompson Chain Reference -

    There are promises of spiritual resurrection
    Resurrection, Spiritual - Thompson Chain Reference -
    Resurrection - Thompson Chain Reference -

    There are promises of justification by faith:
    Justification - Thompson Chain Reference -

    Always will be about the Lord Jesus Christ and what He did for mankind on the cross; and being risen again 3 days later by God ~ Imo; never praise or believe me always check the bible and see what it has to say! Take care unto you all and your families.
     
    #4 MatthewA, May 16, 2021
    Last edited: May 16, 2021
    • Informative Informative x 1
  5. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    Hmmm... But why does he need that? Why does he need for us to be an extension? Surely he was complete before our creation: he is all perfect. So why would he need that of us?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  6. 74x12

    74x12 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2017
    Messages:
    4,519
    Ratings:
    +1,253
    Religion:
    Itiswhatitis
    It's hard to say; but I think he really wants to include us somehow because he just likes us. He did lose a lot of angels (the Bible indicates about 1/3rd of the angels) that started a war in heaven. So some people believe we are meant to replace them.

    Ultimately, I believe God's motive is simply love for his creation. He looks at us as offspring.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  7. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    But why does god want us to build character?

    I've often heard it said that we exist for god's pleasure, but where does character fit in? Also, why are there so many unnecessary challenges in life? What character do I build when I stub my toe?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  8. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    That's a positive outlook on the issue. I like that. :D

    Not sure I find the answer satisfactory, though. Still seems rather unnecessary.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 2
  9. MikeF

    MikeF Proponent of RAEism
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2020
    Messages:
    519
    Ratings:
    +222
    Religion:
    None
    I think the question is, "Why is one person's cross much bigger and heavier than another persons cross?"
    I don't think you, or Jesus, has addressed why there is a disparity in suffering. Do you have insight as to why that would be?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  10. MatthewA

    MatthewA Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2021
    Messages:
    775
    Ratings:
    +607
    Religion:
    Christian
    All I know is that there are resurrected bodies everyone in this world are going to get: from a condemned spiritual body because of unbelief and having no spiritual life due to unbelief; and people whom are resurrected this way go outside of the kingdom of God: (Revelation 22)

    According to the bible: Believers who believe on Christ Jesus; are going to be resurrected. As well as those who do not believe. Believers who live and try to do with will of God (which is in link in my signature if you would like to know more about the will of God for believers.) Are going to be given a spiritual body; and their are all different types of measures of faith according to scriptures (Romans 12:1-3)? Each believer will build character, in preserving for the hope which is found even after this life of going on to be with God and the Lord Jesus Christ; and the body that will be given to that believer will be judged based on the good and bad they did in their life; and then receive a spiritual body afterwards.

    Speaking now back on the unbelievers: they are said to be outside the kingdom of heaven and the believers inside of the kingdom heaven: which is know to me as the Heavenly Jerusalem, which houses spiritual bodies which some are outside the kingdom, and some are inside of the kingdom, : : If possible it would be cool to have a job to do or something maybe go to the outside of the kingdom to help others come to see the truth and help them to the light.

    There are some of my thoughts, ideas, and beliefs when it comes down to the reason of being tested in the faith, of a Christian and not sure there is much more I can say other than do not believe me check out what the bible has to say about these things. It is possible for me to be wrong.

    Thank you, that is all I know : SigurdReginson
     
    • Informative Informative x 1
  11. Jimmy

    Jimmy Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2019
    Messages:
    2,628
    Ratings:
    +859
    Why does life test?
    There is no why
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  12. MikeF

    MikeF Proponent of RAEism
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2020
    Messages:
    519
    Ratings:
    +222
    Religion:
    None
    If God sees us as His children, then he can only be described as an absentee parent. It's as if a parent were to stick a list of do's and don't on the fridge and then left for good. Hardly the best way to raise a child.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  13. Brickjectivity

    Brickjectivity Veteran Member
    Staff Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2012
    Messages:
    31,711
    Ratings:
    +12,390
    Religion:
    liber-scripta grim Christian
    Maybe God doesn't.

    The tetragrammaton is typically translated as LORD or is left untranslated for a reason. Unless we know the reason we can't say for sure what the testing of Abraham is about. (Genesis 22) There is a large question mark on this term, but we don't actually need to know it to understand that God doesn't tempt Christians.

    Long before Christ and even long before the Talmud when there was once a Canaanite pantheon of twelve gods one of whom was named 'Yahweh' or something like it at that time the tetragrammaton may have referred to a tribe rather than a specific entity we think of as a god, possibly a tribe's real estate marker or some other complicated instrument we no longer use today. That is because the Canaanite pantheon is not necessarily the same thing as an Egyptian ones. The Egyptians pillages the Canaanites for thousands of years in the name of the gods. The Canaanites may have had a different and subversive concept of gods just as the Jews did after the creation of the Talmud. The Jewish concept of God is subversive, and the Canaanite pantheon may have been equally subversive -- an anti-pantheon or something of that nature, perhaps a mockery of the Egyptian pantheon. We don't know. What we do know is that from the Canaanites appear the Jews with a very subversive concept of deity, and we know that the Canaanites had some sort of pantheon.

    For this reason we cannot based upon the story of Abraham alone determine what the testing of Abraham means. It may have been that his community doubted his sincerity. It may have been that Abraham, having sent away one wife and son, had created doubt about where his commitment was. It may also be that this test was instigated by an enemy, someone who provoked the test. The scripture does not explain, and the word often translated 'LORD' is unexplained. Therefore maybe God doesn't test people even in this scripture. Where it says the LORD tests Abraham it doesn't necessarily mean God tests people. The two concepts may not be the same exactly.

    Moving forward in time we have the Christian God which is a distillation of the concept of divinity, that which is hidden and the principle underlying all explanations of things unexplained. Concerning God Christians have this from James:
    [Jas 1:13-14 NIV] 13 When tempted, no one should say, "God is tempting me." For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone; 14 but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.​
     
    • Informative Informative x 2
  14. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    I might agree with that. I also might say there is no test. There is simply life, and challenges are part of life... Throw a creator in the mix, and those challenges are planned. They exist for a reason.

    I can't fathom why god wouldn't make life without challenges instead...Maybe so people wouldn't get bored? He could make it so we didn't get bored, though, so it's not that.

    If everything was planned according to god's will, I don't see the point in creating adversity other than to introduce suffering, but to what end?... I don't see why suffering would be a necessary aspect of life given that god could make life in any way he wanted.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  15. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    Hmmm... A very interesting bird's eye perspective that creates more questions than it does answers. I like that. :D
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  16. Mestemia

    Mestemia Advocatus Diaboli
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2005
    Messages:
    49,554
    Ratings:
    +14,081
    Religion:
    not a theist
    What makes you think the test is for his benefit?
     
    • Like Like x 1
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  17. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    Ok... From what I can tell, challenge benefits me in a world where challenge exists. How does my experience with challenges in life benefit me in an afterlife where I will never see challenges again? It'd be like practicing for baseball, and then when I finish practicing, never touching the sport again. What was the point of practicing for baseball in the first place?
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  18. MatthewA

    MatthewA Active Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2021
    Messages:
    775
    Ratings:
    +607
    Religion:
    Christian
    SR,

    Who says that challenges might suddenly stop in the afterlife?

    Could God have something for us to do even though we might not bodies? Now some might believe differently than this; and believe that maybe there will be a new world, and new heavens; and they will go and be resurrected there. ( I personally do not believe this myself anymore and have accepted from Paul the resurrection of the spiritual body which is given by God through faith and raised again 1 Corinthians 15 ).

    My thinking on the afterlife if there are people who are still out there in the darkness, and are lost, need help so maybe that will be a challenge trying to reach people so they can be set free from the darkness by seeing the light, and the truth about the light found in Christ Jesus, and help them come back and be set free of their bondage. Bondage is a terrible thing to be in; its restrictive and there is not freedom.

    I could be wrong; anyway thank you for the polite conversation ! :)
     
  19. Mestemia

    Mestemia Advocatus Diaboli
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2005
    Messages:
    49,554
    Ratings:
    +14,081
    Religion:
    not a theist
    You will have to ask someone who believes in an afterlife.

    Do you believe that practicing for baseball will have absolutely zero crossover into other aspects of your life?

    I am curious.
    Why do you shift from tests to challenges?
    Your usage indicates you believe them to be the same thing.
    Which if you do, that is fine.
    I am merely wanting to verify it.
     
    • Friendly Friendly x 1
  20. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
    Premium Member

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2019
    Messages:
    1,905
    Ratings:
    +2,605
    Religion:
    None
    Other aspects? Maybe. Aspects that matter in a meaningful or critical way? Doesn't seem so.

    Hmm, I suppose they are not the same thing, though tests must include challenge as an element, otherwise there really would be no point for the test to begin with. Anyone could pass it without any real effort at all, and the test would be meaningless.

    Maybe instead of the baseball example, we could use an underwater basket weaving class as an example. What's the point of passing that class and getting my degree in underwater basket weaving if I will spend minimal time in my life underwater and will never weave a basket again after it's over?

    In an afterlife where I will never know sadness and hardship again, why do I need to experience sadness and hardship in the first place? If it's some kind of test, it doesn't seem like it would prepare me for anything I'd actually be doing in the afterlife.
     
    #20 SigurdReginson, May 16, 2021
    Last edited: May 16, 2021
Loading...