g                      i                      n                      k                      w                      o                      l                      d                      .                     n                     e            t  






[your walk



helping to build community

emerging community resources

for your walk in faith






add your site  


hard questions : God's plan


june 01, 2002 - If we are part of God's "perfect plan" and we screw-up all the time, how does that change the concept of perfection? 

well, i think this is going to be a short one:  on one level i have say - i have no idea, yet on another level i tend to think that just because we are imperfect, that has nothing to do with God - 


God's plain is perfect, and in that perfection humans have no place in it - that is to say, God's plan directs us, we do not direct God's plan.  


july 01, 2002 - "how does the theology of 'once saved always saved' fit into a postmodern theology?"

I find this question interesting.  On the “modern” side, the contemporary church (and even modern traditional churches) has rejected the concept of “sin,” yet they have embraced the concept of “salvation.”  On the other side, we in the postmodern church have accepted “sin” (because we see it all over the place), and we have rejected the concept of salvation – not on a whole scale basis – we ask, "how can God save evil people?" or "how can God save continually evil people?"  You see, God can, and will, save everyone, everyone who accepts him and walks with him.  But we say, “there must be a limit” – and I believe there is a limit.  The question for me, and I think on a postmodern level, is not that a person can not be saved, but that they can walk away from that gift at any time.  i will admit, that at some level the answer to the question is somewhat dubious.  because at some level, as a postmodern person, i want to say, "it does not matter."  we spend so much time determining if someone else is saved, we forget it's all in God's hands.  simply follow God, and all else is cool.


Salvation is a gift from God.  Those who hold to a once saved, always saved concept believe that salvation is a gift and God would never take back a gift.  I agree, but that has nothing to do with the issue.  It is not that God is taking back a gift; it is that we are rejecting the gift.  So you see, losing our salvation is not that God takes it away; it is that we through it back in his face.  If we consider the parable of the Sower and the Seed in Luke 8: 5-15, we see that we ourselves have some responsibility to continue to respond to the truth of the Gospel. The fact that God is certainly in charge does not negate our personal responsibility to 'remain on track' as Christians.


We are all sinners and will continue to sin, so we can lose our salvation?  No, that is not what I believe scripture teaches, nor is that what I am saying.  We do not lose our salvation because we sin, unless we sin so much as to grieve the Holy Spirit, we lose our salvation because we walk away for it and God – remember, we can come back at anytime, God will always take us back.  If we have free will, and we do, we can move away for our salvation; we are free to chose and we are free to reject – we can move the other way and walk away from God.


Salvation is a wonderful gift from God and should be seen as such.  As followers we need to spread the word of God to the entire world, and let then know of this wonderful gift.  But we must do so honestly.  I remember taking to a pastor about salvation and he said, “over the past year we have introduced over 500 people into a salvation relationship with Jesus Christ.”  I asked where they all were (his church was 150 people) and he said he did not know – but that they were saved – I think and a contemporary church we have made a whole lot of lost wet people, and introduced very few to a lasting relationship with Jesus Christ.


september 01, 2002 - doesn't all the suffering, in this world, prove that there is no God?

this answer is going to be short and sweet.  not, pain and suffering does not prove there is no God - it does prove that people are not willing to follow the teachings of God - 


we have hunger, because churches are more concerned with how big and pretty their church building is then the hungry around them.  we have homelessness because churches are developing 60 million dollar building programs, and yet would not spend a dime of building housing for the poor.  we have child abuse, because the church is not a safe place to run to, and they are more concerned with keeping their insurance rates down, then punishing the speaking out.


God said, this is how i want you to live - "love everyone and care for everyone" but the church heard, "love only those who think like you - then not too much.  care for only those you do not touch, and never go too far because they have to learn to help themselves."  imagine if we all work 100% to end hunger, abuse, homelessness?  this is something we can not blame God for - we have to put it on our shoulders.


october 01, 2002 - Can a sincere non-christian get into heaven?

This is a great question, the answer I am certain will tick some people off – but here goes.  Taking scripture as a whole, I would say “no.”  Scripture speaks over and over that in order to get into heaven on needs to be in relationship with God, and that happens through a relationship with Jesus Christ.  So, if you are not a follower of Christ you are not in relationship with God.  For some this point of view is “harsh.”  But I don’t think it is.  I think God is giving us every opportunity to follow His teachings and walk the walk He has selected for us – and that requires action on our part.  If we believe in our hearts that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God – God on earth in flesh – then we would willing, openly and lovingly should want to follow His path – this includes knowing that those who accept and follow will be in glory with Him, and those who do not, will not. 


I am certain there are some who are more “politically correct” then I who would disagree and call my understanding “closed minded” and “wrong” – but is it?  I was watching Phil Donahue on MSNBC the other night and he used the “will devote Jews and Muslims got to hell?”  as a litness test to show how “close minded” Christians can be.  Forgetting that a devote Jew and a Devote Muslim has just as strong a beliefs in what they believe as a devote Christian has in their beliefs.  To have a faith, to trust in God, is to take God at his word – to trust in His promise (read Romans 5) and know that it fits in His plan.  Given that, if I am standing at the pearly gates and a “sincere non-christian” comes along and God allows them in, all I can do is say – “praise God, for God is so gracious.”  


november 01, 2002 - when do we get some answers? After all, the load is getting heavy and somewhere in the mix I can't help but ask, "Where is the glory?"

 my first thought centers on the "aloneness" i am getting from the question - you see, I have found that over time people who ask “where is God” are actually asking, “where are the people who claim to follow God?”  I believe, if we can't figure out an answer to the problem maybe, just maybe, we need to be living in community and allow others to help us figure out the problem?  But for most people, that’s a hard one – after all, we’re americans, and americans do it all themselves.  as americans we have this "alone and tuff individualism" - but in a scriptural community we are never truly individuals, we are always connected in community - all ARE brothers and sisters in relationship with God - so, it could be that we need to allow others to help us understand the problems.  besides, if the load is getting heavy, share it with another - you will soon find that the load is lighter - and when we share with others in a God centered community - we always see the glory of God.  So you see, for me, the question is not so much “how come God won’t take this heavy load from me?” as much as it is, “why won’t I give up this load to others in the community?”