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Popular notions, Bible clash over heaven
Baptist Press ^ | July 17, 2008 | Norm Miller

Posted on 07/18/2008 6:46:18 AM PDT by Alex Murphy

GRAPEVINE, Texas (BP)--Have you ever noticed that when a discussion turns to a recently deceased celebrity, someone invariably says, "I know he's looking down on us right now"? It doesn't matter how godless the person was, his peers refer to him as being in a better place and then gesture skyward.

Mark Coppenger, professor of Christian apologetics at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, sees a lamentable example of that in the 1941 poem "High Flight," which was quoted in tribute to astronauts who died in the 1986 explosion of the Space Shuttle Challenger.

Not all the astronauts were Christians "but we were told they 'slipped the surly bonds of earth to touch the face of God,'" Coppenger noted. He also recalled a cartoon in a Chicago newspaper that depicted the late sports announcer Harry Caray being welcomed by Saint Peter at the pearly gates, even though there was no evidence Caray was redeemed.

"Everywhere you turn, culture ignores the Bible to make gassy pronouncements on the afterlife," Coppenger said.

Such secular cultural perceptions are uninformed by the truth and seem to be based on the delusion that one's eternal destiny is determined either by heinous deeds or good poll numbers.

Some people assume the dearly departed are in heaven because they weren't notorious sinners. People want to believe the departed went to heaven because they know they themselves are sinners and want to believe they are not bad enough for hell. "I'm not as bad as the other guy," goes the thinking. "God will somehow understand in the end that we were pretty good people, and based on our overall behavior He should let us into heaven."

In a 2004 address at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, David Dockery, president of Union University in Jackson, Tenn., said, "Even those who retain some vague idea of heavenly bliss beyond this life are slow to acknowledge the reality of final judgment and condemnation. Modern men and women live with the mindset that there is no heaven, no hell and therefore no guilt."

FOCUSED ON THIS WORLD

Steve Lemke, provost of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary, said so much error is found in popular thinking about eternity because there's "less preaching now about heaven and hell than in previous eras." He attributes that trend to the upward social mobility of Southern Baptists.

Until the 1950s, Southern Baptists were mostly rural, small-town folks and heaven was the only respite many poor people expected from their hardscrabble existence, Lemke noted. "So we lived with hope and our eyes on the skies, awaiting Christ's return," he said.

But with increased education and income, Southern Baptists moved to suburbia and began enjoying a fairly comfortable lifestyle with a focus on coping in this world, Lemke added.

"We don't give nearly the attention we should to eternity," he said. "Popular preaching focuses on how to have a better marriage, better relationships and how to cope with struggles.

"It is important that we address these topics in preaching and teaching, of course, but not to the neglect of a focus on eternity," he said. "By this very focus on meeting needs in this world -- to the neglect of preaching on heaven and hell -- we are showing by our actions that this world is more significant than the world to come."

Malcolm Yarnell, associate professor of systematic theology at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas, sees two causes for the neglect of preaching on eternity, both of which "reflect the power of contemporary culture to distort the message once-for-all given to the saints."

"First, our people and pastors are increasingly interested in making heaven here on earth," Yarnell said. "The modern pursuit of material wealth and comfort, alongside the overarching desire to avoid pain or physical problems of any type, is a longstanding and pervasive influence in our culture. Rather than challenging such a mindset, some of us quietly cave into the demand for sermons to consider primarily mundane matters.

"Second, the subject of hell is not exactly the most comfortable subject to address," he said. "Postmodernism, with its attendant religious inclusivism and aversion to judgment, is the dominant outlook of our cultural elite, especially in the media; to condemn non-Christians to an eternity in hell is considered impolite, even rude."

"In the 1950s of my childhood, it was easier to preach on hell because there was more widespread conviction that the Bible was true," Coppenger added. "Or perhaps it worked the other way around: There was greater respect for the Bible because ministers preached the whole counsel of God, including the reality of hell, without embarrassment, mumbling, or marketing spin."

A NEED TO HEAR THE TRUTH

People think about the afterlife, but they need to hear the truth amid the eschatological blather espoused by the New Age movement, Mormonism, universalism, and other false religions, Coppenger added.

Yarnell agreed: "We don't clearly enough make the biblical connection between the doctrine of heaven and hell and the life we live today. The unfortunate consequence of this neglect is that we too easily live like permanent residents of the City of Man rather than the resident aliens we are, headed to our good end as Christ's people in the City of God."

Even people on opposite sides of the Calvinism issue seem to agree on certain matters of eternity, Yarnell added.

"Both traditional Baptists and Calvinist Baptists look at Scripture as inerrant and the supreme source of our doctrine," Yarnell said. "The New Testament is filled with references to heaven and hell. There is not a page of Scripture that, directly or indirectly, does not call the hearer to consider his eternal standing before an eternal God. If you derive your proclamation from Scripture, you will preach heaven and hell. On this, all conservative Southern Baptists will agree."

Muslims may talk more about eternal consequences than do evangelicals, says former missionary Eddie Pate, associate professor of missions at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary.

"Heaven and hell are issues I talked about all the time with Muslims," Pate said. "Many of my best conversations revolved around these topics. I would guess that, during our years on the mission field, heaven and hell were topics in at least half the conversations I had with Muslims.

"Muslims believe people who follow the pillars of Islam will go to heaven -- at least they hope so," Pate added. "But Muslims can't speak with any assurance like Christians can. They can't embrace 'Christ died once for our sins, once for all, the just for the unjust that he might bring us to God' (1 Peter 3:18). They have no such confidence."

Mormons, on the other hand, teach a universalistic view of an afterlife, explained Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary President R. Philip Roberts, who has written and lectured extensively on cults.

LDS founder Joseph Smith was traumatized by the accusation that his brother who died as a teenager had gone to hell and fashioned a religion in which "everyone is going to a better place," Roberts said. "Whether you are as evil as Adolf Hitler or whatever your lifestyle, you're at least going to go into a celestial kingdom, which Mormonism teaches is a far better place than this life and world, a place of great bliss and happiness."

Smith included all his elements of an afterlife -- becoming like gods and having many wives -- after becoming involved in polygamous affairs, Roberts noted. "His doctrine of the afterlife was created to satisfy his need to provide some kind of quasi-universalism and to cover his moral failures," he said.

THREE REASONS TO PREACH ON ETERNITY

Preaching on the doctrines of heaven and hell are vitally important because they "teach us not only of the life to come, but teach us much about how we should live in the everyday of life today," said David Nelson, theology professor and academic vice president at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary in Wake Forest, N.C.

"The doctrine of heaven and, yes, the doctrine of hell, lead us to reflect on the greatness and goodness of God who is holy and who is love, who is beautiful and glorious," Nelson said. "To fail to teach these doctrines is to fail to teach of the fullness of God by whom we are all to be filled, as Paul puts it in Ephesians 3."

"No preacher in his right mind enjoys preaching on hell," added David Allen, theology dean at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. "Hell is a place terrible beyond imagination. But no preacher in his right mind can avoid preaching on hell. As Paul said in 2 Corinthians 5:11, 'knowing the terror of the Lord, we persuade men.'"

Allen said he preaches about hell for three reasons:

1) It is a biblical doctrine. Jesus spoke more about hell than about heaven. Jesus uses the word "Hades" four times in his preaching and the word "hell" 11 times. Eighteen of the 28 times Jesus uses the word "fire" in the Gospels, he is talking about hell. If there is no hell, then there is no punishment for sin.

2) We are commanded to preach the whole counsel of God (Acts 20:27). The Lord will hold his preachers accountable for preaching all of the Bible, not just the parts of it people like to hear.

3) Jesus lived, died and rose again so people would not have to go to hell. Only Jesus can save someone from his sins and from hell.

"Doctrinal preaching is drastically needed in our churches," Allen said. "Believe it or not, most people in the churches want to know what God said about heaven and hell. In fact, most lost people want to know as well. When I preach on hell, I have found most people give serious attention during the message.

"Remember, one should never preach on hell as if he were glad people were going there," he added. "If you don't preach with a tear in your eye, at least preach with a tear in your heart when you preach on hell. Speaking the truth in love in the power of the Holy Spirit is a powerful thing. Trust God to bless your preaching in this area and you will not be disappointed -- and neither will your people."

Eddie Pate remembers when he first listened to a cassette tape of Jerry Spencer, his uncle, preaching on hell.

"One summer, 30 years ago, as I painted a house, I listened to that same cassette tape over and over," Pate recalled. "The title of the sermon was 'If Hell Is Hell and We Don't Tell, What Kind of People Are We?'

"The title and the theme might sound 'old school' these days, but I hear that question go through my mind almost every day," Pate said. "As leaders and pastors we must regain the passion, emotion and depth of feeling that comes from understanding that our unsaved friends are indeed lost and bound for an eternity in hell outside of Christ. We must bear precious seed, weeping."


TOPICS: Apologetics; Evangelical Christian; Religion & Culture
KEYWORDS: afterlife
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1 posted on 07/18/2008 6:46:18 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy

If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity. Nice message /s


2 posted on 07/18/2008 6:51:03 AM PDT by Moonman62 (The issue of whether cheap labor makes America great should have been settled by the Civil War.)
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To: Alex Murphy

*** “God will somehow understand in the end that we were pretty good people, and based on our overall behavior He should let us into heaven.” ***

Pelagius would be proud.


3 posted on 07/18/2008 6:52:11 AM PDT by Gamecock (The question is not, Am I good enough to be a Christian? rather Am I good enough not to be?)
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To: Moonman62

Nope. That’s according to Christ.


4 posted on 07/18/2008 6:53:08 AM PDT by Gamecock (The question is not, Am I good enough to be a Christian? rather Am I good enough not to be?)
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To: Alex Murphy

Does it truly hurt Christianity if Ronald Reagan used the words from a poem in memorializing national heroes? I can understand the greater point, but still...


5 posted on 07/18/2008 6:53:15 AM PDT by PghBaldy (Obama is hiding something about his birth, parents or name- but what?)
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To: Moonman62
If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity.

I've got some news for you:
1) I'm not a Baptist.
2) If you aren’t redeemed, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity.

6 posted on 07/18/2008 6:53:22 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Moonman62
If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity.

You say that like the baptists are the ones that came up with that doctrine. Obviously, that isn't true. That doctrine comes straight from the Bible.
7 posted on 07/18/2008 6:54:15 AM PDT by JamesP81 (George Orwell's 1984 was a warning, not a suggestion)
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To: Alex Murphy

Amen. Being focused on the world is dangerous. Too many evangelicals see lost man as their primary focus, rather than Christ Jesus. This results in church becoming a haven for spiritually dead people, with the saints being droned into submission or departing for a true church. Worldlings invite other worldlings to entertaining event-driven religious meetings, all the while convincing one another that they are approved in the Lord. Spurgeon said, “If your religion does not make you holy it will damn you to hell.”

The church must first and foremost focus on the Lord. It’s primary mission on Earth is to disciple saints of God so they are equipped to go and proclaim Christ to those who are perishing.


8 posted on 07/18/2008 6:55:29 AM PDT by Manfred the Wonder Dawg (Test ALL things, hold to that which is True.)
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To: Manfred the Wonder Dawg
invite other worldlings to entertaining event-driven religious meetings

But how else can we get the lost into the church!?! < sarc>

Has anyone out there actually thought about the possibility that the worldliness we are told to avoid might just mean during worship?

9 posted on 07/18/2008 7:00:18 AM PDT by Gamecock (The question is not, Am I good enough to be a Christian? rather Am I good enough not to be?)
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To: JamesP81; colorcountry; Pan_Yans Wife; MHGinTN; Colofornian; Elsie; FastCoyote; Osage Orange; ...

Ping


10 posted on 07/18/2008 7:02:38 AM PDT by greyfoxx39 (Tagline on vacation during the grand experiment.)
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To: Moonman62
If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity. Nice message /s

Not a Baptist message, but a Scriptural one.

Romans 3:23 - For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.

Romans 6:23 - For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is enternal life.

Romans 5:8 - But God commended his love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.

John 14:6 Jesus said to him "I am the way the truth and the life; no man cometh to the Father but by me."

11 posted on 07/18/2008 7:02:57 AM PDT by VRWCmember
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To: JamesP81

Baptists, historically, have had to back-to-back distinctives that are noteworthy:

a) Individual soul liberty;
b) the priesthood of the believer.

Baptists who understand their Bibles and their heritage are not likely to make a statement that implies that there is any such thing as a Baptist redemption. Baptists don’t believe that they have any corner on redemption or salvation. They don’t believe that being a member of their churches is either pre-requisite to, or sustaining of, salvation. Baptists don’t believe that water baptism (by any mode) can save, can keep one saved, or contribute to salvation.

Baptists don’t believe in a “Baptist way” to Christ or to the soul’s salvation. They do believe that there is a Bible way, and that is a Person, Christ Himself in the virtue of His Blood Sacrifice (for our sins) and Resurrection (for our justification). (Romans 8:3; 4:25; etc.)


12 posted on 07/18/2008 7:07:18 AM PDT by John Leland 1789
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To: Moonman62

“If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity. Nice message /s”

I think they actually read that somewhere...


13 posted on 07/18/2008 7:08:02 AM PDT by aMorePerfectUnion
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To: Gamecock
Has anyone out there actually thought about the possibility that the worldliness we are told to avoid might just mean during worship?

Yes, just the other day when I attended a rock concert (Journey, Heart, and Cheap Trick) I was struck that the crowd was reacting much the same way as some of the worshippers I see at the new Evangelical Churches I attend. - - Enraptured, swaying back and forth, arms raised in the air.

I think we need to remember it isn't the music, but the Lord we worship.

14 posted on 07/18/2008 7:08:17 AM PDT by colorcountry (To anger a conservative, lie to him. To anger a liberal, tell him the truth.)
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To: Moonman62
If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity. Nice message /s

You'd better believe it.

15 posted on 07/18/2008 7:09:47 AM PDT by Watershed
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To: JamesP81

no, the doctrine didnt ‘come from the bible’, it came from Christ’s mouth to his apostles, they in turn preached it, and wrote in their letters to the various churches to their appointed bishops and priests to preach it....after that that one holy catholic and apostolic church preserved those writings and under the guide of the holy spirit, brought together the books that became the bible, and preserved that for future generations.


16 posted on 07/18/2008 7:10:01 AM PDT by raygunfan
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To: Alex Murphy

So what about people, past and present who have never had the opportunity to hear of Christ? Just suppose they have never ‘sinned’, and by their nature unkbnowingly abided by the 10 commandments? Are you telling me Jesus Christ would send them to fry in Hell?

I believe Jesus is Love, not vengence and hate.


17 posted on 07/18/2008 7:11:58 AM PDT by Dudoight
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To: Dudoight
Just suppose they have never ‘sinned’, and by their nature unkbnowingly abided by the 10 commandments?

Are you familiar with all 10 commandments?

18 posted on 07/18/2008 7:14:22 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
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To: Alex Murphy
2) If you aren’t redeemed, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity.

Hmm...Where do you get that idea? It's not mentioned in the Scriptures anywhere that I can find.

19 posted on 07/18/2008 7:16:01 AM PDT by Truth Defender (History teaches, if we but listen to it; but no one really listens!)
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To: JamesP81
You say that like the baptists are the ones that came up with that doctrine. Obviously, that isn't true. That doctrine comes straight from the Bible.

It does? Please tell me where you find it.

20 posted on 07/18/2008 7:17:50 AM PDT by Truth Defender (History teaches, if we but listen to it; but no one really listens!)
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To: Alex Murphy; All
1. I'm neither Calvinist nor Mormon but I can say with a modicum of certainty both John Calvin AND Joseph Smith were nasty individuals.

2. According to Christian "Doctrine", had Adolph Hitler accepted jesus as his Lord and Savior, he too would have been headed for the Pearly Gates. That's an even "nicer" message. That's why deathbed conversions are empty.

3. Those who claim they will go to Heaven because they are born-again are comparable to someone who would walk into a state lottery office and claim winning because they believe they have the true numbers.

It's based upon an imperfect interpretation of a few chapters of one document.

4. I wouldn't share a one floor elevator ride with most people who claim they will be going to Heaven, no less an entire afterlife.

21 posted on 07/18/2008 7:19:55 AM PDT by britt reed (His followers believe Obama is the "Second Coming", those with open eyes recognize the Golden Calf.)
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To: Alex Murphy

Well, I meant as to moral behavior. Of course these souls cannot rememer the Sabbath, etc.

But there must be good, innocent people who have passed through this world and never heard of Christ. I just can’t see Our Lord damning them to hell.

I have known good, moral, kind, decent agnostics/athiests. They innately reject all the worldliness and sin that Christians reject. I guess Our Lord has damned them by your standards.


22 posted on 07/18/2008 7:22:47 AM PDT by Dudoight
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To: Alex Murphy

And in reality, no one really knows what happens after we die.


23 posted on 07/18/2008 7:23:53 AM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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To: Alex Murphy

I have even different news;

-I don’t believe there is a hell, and no one can prove it either way!!


24 posted on 07/18/2008 7:25:46 AM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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To: colorcountry

I had the same experience when I attended a Paul McCartney concert. I had never been to a big rock conert like that. It did look something like worship at an evangelical church.


25 posted on 07/18/2008 7:27:38 AM PDT by bethelgrad (Chaplain serving my beloved Marine Corps)
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To: JamesP81
I think you're putting a comma in the sentence that isn't there. It reads...

If you aren’t redeemed according to the Baptists, you’re going to fry in hell for all of eternity.

The meaningful part is redeemed according to the Baptists. There is no comma after redeemed.

This is significant because we all need to be redeemed, but what exactly does that redemption involve? The Bible is our only source of undisputed Apostolic teaching.

Paul clearly writes in 1 Corinthians 3:10a "By the grace God has given me, I laid a foundation as an expert builder, and someone else is building on it."

The Baptists are building on the foundation laid by the Apostles. We do not need to be redeemed according to the Baptist view, but to the Apostolic view. Now the Baptists may be in complete agreement with the Apostolic teaching, but only time will tell. 1 Corinthians 3 continues "the fire will test the quality of each man's work."

The Apostles are the foundation, and everything else is built on that foundation. Only foundation is Truth without question. Everyone else's work will be judged with fire.

26 posted on 07/18/2008 7:31:16 AM PDT by Tao Yin (Hey, this thread isn't ecumenical)
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To: Dudoight

I think the concept that when we die, we are teleported to another planet called Heaven a bit odd.


27 posted on 07/18/2008 7:33:08 AM PDT by Dog Gone
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To: Alex Murphy

How about this for a poem:

I guess ya aren’t expectin’ no resurrection to soon,
World doom.
That story’s got to be bunk about that trumpet tune,
Cheese on the moon.
Well won’t your peepers get the creepers when you realize,
It’s all happening before your eyes.
Oh my, you’ll fry as we wave good bye to you.
— Daniel Amos


28 posted on 07/18/2008 7:34:18 AM PDT by Guyin4Os (My name says Guyin40s but now I have an exotic, daring, new nickname..... Guyin50s)
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To: Dudoight

Read Romans chapter 1. Paul through the leading of the Holy Spirit gives some insight regarding those outside the hearing of the gospel. It is this thought that helps motivate those who commit their lives to the work of missions.


29 posted on 07/18/2008 7:34:54 AM PDT by Binghamton_native
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To: Dudoight
"So what about people, past and present who have never had the opportunity to hear of Christ? Just suppose they have never ‘sinned’, and by their nature unkbnowingly abided by the 10 commandments? Are you telling me Jesus Christ would send them to fry in Hell?"

Romans 2:11 For there is no respect of persons with God.
2:12 For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;

Romans 3:23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;

"I believe Jesus is Love, not vengence and hate.

Jesus loved us so much he died for our sins. But make no mistake, Jesus said in John 3:3 Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
And Jesus repeats this warning in John 3:7 Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.

The word "must" means that there is no other way to see the kingdom of heaven.

FReegards,
DocRock
30 posted on 07/18/2008 7:40:38 AM PDT by DocRock (All they that TAKE the sword shall perish with the sword. Matthew 26:52 Gun grabbers beware.)
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To: Alex Murphy

Noteworthy article. My Pentecostal grandmother refers to the concept of preaching “heaven and hell” as that “old time religion”.

What are the primary doctrinal differences between Baptists and Presbyterians?


31 posted on 07/18/2008 7:41:09 AM PDT by rbmillerjr ("bigger government means constricting freedom"....................RWR)
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To: britt reed
That's why deathbed conversions are empty

Only empty deathbed conversions are empty. The criminal on the cross next to Jesus had a deathbed conversion that seemed to work just fine.

Luke 23:43 Jesus answered him, "I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise."

32 posted on 07/18/2008 7:47:49 AM PDT by Tao Yin (Hey, this thread isn't ecumenical)
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To: britt reed
2. According to Christian "Doctrine", had Adolph Hitler accepted Jesus as his Lord and Savior, he too would have been headed for the Pearly Gates. That's an even "nicer" message. That's why deathbed conversions are empty.

Actually, a Calvinist would more likely tell you that Hitler was predestined to be unregenerate and that he is burning in Hell right now. A "deathbed confession" would not happen unless God willed it to happen. So, yes, they pretty much are empty. None of us (Calvinists) believe we can "fool God", and live lives of debauchery and then cash in our redemption card on our deathbeds. God saves whom He chooses to save.

33 posted on 07/18/2008 7:49:06 AM PDT by Sans-Culotte
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To: Alex Murphy
I think the author is a tad too hard on the use of "High Flight". The poem was written by a young RAF pilot during WW2. As the pilot was (obviously) alive when he wrote it, it was really an attempt to describe the exhilaration of flight. It is usually quoted when remembering someone who loved aviation.

Ironically, the pilot who wrote the poem died in a mid-air collision with a fellow RAF pilot.

34 posted on 07/18/2008 7:52:06 AM PDT by Sans-Culotte
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To: John Leland 1789
Baptists who understand their Bibles and their heritage are not likely to make a statement that implies that there is any such thing as a Baptist redemption. Baptists don’t believe that they have any corner on redemption or salvation. They don’t believe that being a member of their churches is either pre-requisite to, or sustaining of, salvation. Baptists don’t believe that water baptism (by any mode) can save, can keep one saved, or contribute to salvation.

Being a southern baptist and Christian for the past fourteen years, I'm pretty familiar with all this. And everything you say is correct. Salvation is not dependent upon being a baptist, but being a Christian. I choose to go to a baptist church because our church teaches God's truth. If it didn't, I'd be somewhere else.
35 posted on 07/18/2008 7:57:13 AM PDT by JamesP81 (George Orwell's 1984 was a warning, not a suggestion)
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To: DocRock

Doesn’t God know when He creates someone, if they are going to live a life that will have no opportunity to hear of Christ? If so, then isn’t that the same as creating someone that is doomed at birth, to go to hell, no matter what?


36 posted on 07/18/2008 7:58:59 AM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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To: Tao Yin
That's why deathbed conversions are empty

Only empty deathbed conversions are empty. The criminal on the cross next to Jesus had a deathbed conversion that seemed to work just fine.

Luke 23:43 Jesus answered him, "I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise."

Dysmas, or St. Dysmas, if you're a Catholic, was quite possibly unaware of the existence or message of Jesus Christ, giving some semblance of a true deathbed confession upon Christ's message.

Hitler, on the hand, was very much aware of the message of Christ. He was raised a strict Roman Catholic and considered the priesthood.

Two totally situations.

edit/update: in my previous post, I didn't capitalize the name of Jesus. There was no intentional slight. I must proofread a bit more diligently.

37 posted on 07/18/2008 8:00:26 AM PDT by britt reed (His followers believe Obama is the "Second Coming", those with open eyes recognize the Golden Calf.)
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To: raygunfan
no, the doctrine didnt ‘come from the bible’, it came from Christ’s mouth to his apostles, they in turn preached it, and wrote in their letters to the various churches to their appointed bishops and priests to preach it

Obviously, you are correct. When I made my comment I was operating under the assumption that the bible, having been written by the Apostles at God's direction, has authority being that it records the Lord's teachings. Didn't mean to confuse anyone there.
38 posted on 07/18/2008 8:02:24 AM PDT by JamesP81 (George Orwell's 1984 was a warning, not a suggestion)
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To: britt reed

That’s why deathbed conversions are empty
Only empty deathbed conversions are empty. The criminal on the cross next to Jesus had a deathbed conversion that seemed to work just fine.

Luke 23:43 Jesus answered him, “I tell you the truth, today you will be with me in paradise.”

Dysmas, or St. Dysmas, if you’re a Catholic, was quite possibly unaware of the existence or message of Jesus Christ, giving some semblance of a true deathbed confession upon hearing Christ’s message.

Hitler, on the hand, was very much aware of the message of Christ. He was raised a strict Roman Catholic and considered the priesthood.

Two totally different situations.


39 posted on 07/18/2008 8:02:45 AM PDT by britt reed (His followers believe Obama is the "Second Coming", those with open eyes recognize the Golden Calf.)
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To: Truth Defender; VRWCmember
It does? Please tell me where you find it.

Post #11 deals with this quite nicely, I think.
40 posted on 07/18/2008 8:04:13 AM PDT by JamesP81 (George Orwell's 1984 was a warning, not a suggestion)
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To: Sans-Culotte
A "deathbed confession" would not happen unless God willed it to happen. So, yes, they pretty much are empty.

You contradict yourself. You have no way of knowing which are "empty" and which are not.

41 posted on 07/18/2008 8:04:54 AM PDT by SoothingDave
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To: stuartcr
Doesn’t God know when He creates someone, if they are going to live a life that will have no opportunity to hear of Christ? If so, then isn’t that the same as creating someone that is doomed at birth, to go to hell, no matter what?

You've discovered Calvinism.

42 posted on 07/18/2008 8:06:47 AM PDT by SoothingDave
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To: britt reed

maybe in his youth he was a “strict roman catholic”. As an adult he privately despised the Catholic Church (not in public, as that would alienate many Germans and indeed most of Christianity, which he considered “weak” and, ironically, “Jewish”.)

as far as considering the priesthood, I think you have him mixed up with Stalin, who considered becoming a priest in his youth and went to a seminary.


43 posted on 07/18/2008 8:11:12 AM PDT by ChurtleDawg (voting only encourages them)
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To: britt reed

Agreed, two totally different situations.


44 posted on 07/18/2008 8:13:23 AM PDT by Tao Yin (Hey, this thread isn't ecumenical)
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To: Moonman62

All religious orders aside, he’s spot on.


45 posted on 07/18/2008 8:14:34 AM PDT by stevio (Crunchy Con - God, guns, guts, and organically grown crunchy nuts.)
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To: britt reed
Hitler, on the hand, was very much aware of the message of Christ. He was raised a strict Roman Catholic and considered the priesthood.

Who are you to judge who was "very much aware" of anything?

Many are subjected to the Gospel but do not respond to it until God draws them in. I wouldn't automatically discount anyone's conversion, no matter how late.

Who would have thought Saul the persecutor would become St. Paul?

46 posted on 07/18/2008 8:17:16 AM PDT by SoothingDave
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To: SoothingDave

So are Calvinists right or wrong?


47 posted on 07/18/2008 8:17:56 AM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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To: stuartcr

Misguided.


48 posted on 07/18/2008 8:20:17 AM PDT by SoothingDave
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To: Moonman62

We didn’t say it, God did...check a Bible.


49 posted on 07/18/2008 8:21:01 AM PDT by LiteKeeper (Beware the secularization of America; the Islamization of Eurabia)
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To: SoothingDave

Is that for sure or just a hunch? How is it determined?


50 posted on 07/18/2008 8:22:46 AM PDT by stuartcr (Election year.....Who we gonna hate, in '08?)
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