Beliefs

Discussion in 'Faith & Religion' started by Adam Fields, Feb 11, 2015.

  1. Adam Fields

    Adam Fields Member
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    What does everyone believe in terms of religion? This post is not meant for bashing anyone and I expect everyone to hopefully be civil in this discussion. I just enjoy hearing the opinions of others and what they believe. Personally I am not a religious person but I have no problem with anyone who believes differently than me. I feel that if what you believe makes you happy then it is right for you and there is no problem with that.
     
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  2. Ruth Belena

    Ruth Belena Active Member
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    I've studied several of the world's major religions, and some of the lesser ones. I find it fascinating to discover the similarities and differences. They have much more in common that things that separate them. I think all the religions have some element of truth, but none of them are actually true.

    I was brought up as a Christian, but I no longer consider myself to be of any particular faith. I can't believe that there is a supreme being who is watching our every move and deciding who dies young and who lives into old age.
     
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  3. Adam Fields

    Adam Fields Member
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    I feel almost the same way. I feel that religions borrow and share concepts from each other. Ultimately I think life is about being a good person. Even the concept of Christianity is borrowed from much older Sumerian texts.
     
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  4. Richard Paradon

    Richard Paradon Well-Known Member
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    I tend to agree with you as many religions or paths have a lot of similarities. I like the number three as it seems to pop up in a lot of spiritual ideas. Trinity in the Christian faith, and my lighting three sticks of incense. At the end of one version of the "Lord's Prayer" it goes "The Father, the Son and the Holy Ghost." When I finish my prayers, I always bow three time. I suppose there are many other such examples as well.
     
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  5. Teresita Campaner

    Teresita Campaner Active Member
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    I believe in God. God send the Spirit so that in all times and places people can be in a personal relationship with Jesus, God with us. What we have, life, freedom, love, we have received as pure grace, all is grace. In Christian life, it is better to talk about thanksgiving than about duties and obligations.
     
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  6. Mal Campbell

    Mal Campbell Well-Known Member
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    I'm actually an atheist. But, as @Adam Fields says, this is my "belief", and I have no problems with other people's beliefs, regardless of what they are - as long as they don't harm others, or advocate violence. I believe in tolerance, above all else - live and let live.
     
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  7. Ken Anderson

    Ken Anderson Veteran Member
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    I am a Christian. Although I am not formerly a member of any organized denomination, I was raised in an Evangelical Covenant church. I have served as a deacon, youth pastor, and interim pastor for a couple of Grace Brethren churches, as a deacon in a non-denominational Church of Christ (non-instrumental), an interim pastor of a non-denominational Christian Church, and as a deacon in an American Baptist church. I often visit with people in a local Amish colony and, when I am up north, where my land is, I attend a non-denominational church that is nearly Adventist in its teachings, although the pastor would deny that. As long as I am permitted to disagree, I don't feel that I need to agree with everything that I hear from behind the pulpit in order to fellowship with fellow Christians.

    Personally, I believe in:
    • The Authority of the New Testament -- I believe in the words and teachings of Jesus, as being the key to the interpretation of all Scripture. Where Jesus did not speak, I believe in going as close to the source as possible, which would include the words of those who were personally taught and commissioned by Jesus. Next, I would consider strongly the teachings and practices of the early church, being nearer to the source. The Old Testament is valuable as history, and as a means for understanding and appreciating the promises adherent in the New Covenant.
    • Discipleship -- A true Christian endeavors to follow Jesus in his daily life. This is not to say that any of us is perfect, but that our focus should be on practice rather than creed, and daily discipleship is more important than doctrine. Although I accept that we are saved by faith, and not by works, I must also believe that faith without works is dead. Reconciling the two, I suspect that our faith is known through our works and, while we cannot have faith without works, works without faith are useless.
    • Jesus is Lord -- Our allegiance to our Lord should have precedence over all other loyalties, including family and government. In particular, I fear that the intermingling of Christianity with patriotism in the United States, at least, has proven to be a grave disservice to Christ. Although I have not yet managed to separate myself from politics or political considerations, I believe that I would be a stronger Christian if I were to do so, since only then could I be a true citizen of God. I fear the dangers to my citizenship in the Kingdom of Heaven so long as I remain a citizen of the World.
    • Believer's Baptism -- In every instance in which baptism is mentioned in the New Testament, where it was possible, we are told that a person believed and (then) was baptized. Questions about whether or not baptism is essential to salvation are beyond my pay grade but, at the very least, baptism is our first act of obedience. Baptism by immersion seems to be the closest to emulating the practices of the early church, but I am not willing to argue that baptism by sprinkling or pouring are invalid, my best guess being that intent weighs strongly here.
    • Set Apart from the World -- As Christians, we should be set apart from the world. To me, this runs contrary to the practices of many of the Christian churches, which seem to be designed so as not to make waves, or to stand out. If we are to emulate the New Testament or early church, the life of a Christian should be distinctive, reflecting the teachings of Christ. Non-Christians should look upon Christians and know that there is something different about them.
    Personally, I do not believe in:
    • The Assurance of Salvation -- In Philippians 2:12-13, Paul writes, "Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed -- not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence -- continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, for it is God who works in you to will and to act according to his purpose." I do not believe that we can be assured of our salvation. Personally, I can attest to the fact that I often fall short, not only of the perfection that is found in Christ, but in living up to the things that are within my power. I do not believe that sin is inevitable after we have become Christians, but that it is something that we choose, and which we will have to answer for. As I am not God, I cannot know precisely where the lines are, and just as I have asked Christ into my life and heart, I can also reject Him. I do, however, believe in the hope of salvation.
    • The Rapture -- However, neither do I disbelieve in it. I am an agnostic on the idea of the rapture; I don't know what to believe about it. The word is not found in Scripture, and there are several theories regarding the rapture. In my opinion, the rapture is extra-biblical speculation based on interpretations of Scripture whose accuracy cannot be known for sure.
    If I had to choose a denomination, and I don't, I would guess that my beliefs are most closely aligned with the Mennonites although, for most of my life, I haven't lived near enough to a Mennonite church to be able to attend. I often visit with the Amish, and am on a friendly basis with the head of the Smyrna, Maine colony. I agree with much of what the Amish believe, and I find their lifestyle to be attractive, although it is not my own, obviously.
     
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