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Old 3rd December 2017, 6:46 AM   #316
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Hi TheFinalWord,

It's a matter of either taking the Bible literally or seeking the deeper/hidden meanings. I accept also the Progressive Revelations of the Living Word.

Somewhere in this thread I've posted links to articles about the (Christian) Ritual of Holy Communion, and about the spiritual validity of 'blood sacrifice'.
Hey Ronnie - I guess from my side I see things similar to the final word. I'm not following how you connect the "literal" what happened with the metaphorical deeper "spiritual truth" that is being conveyed.

I see there as being both a "literal" story of what happened - but then I see the spiritual layer in which this literal physical occurrence was meant to convey and represent a deeper spiritual truth. This is of course exactly what a parable is. A simple story in human form meant to explain something spiritual.

For me my interpretation is very simple. Physical blood in the story of christ represents the life essence or "spirit" so to speak of god.

His death represents the "consequences of sin". Right moral action leads to "life". Wrong moral action leads to "death". His death was thus symbolic of taking on the consequences of others wrong moral actions to relieve them of this "deathly" burden. His "spilling blood" so to speak is simply a metaphorical representation of that. Him sacrificing his "spirit" to restore us. Then his subsequent resurrection shows that through his "spirit" those who have sinned are redeemed and restored. The transcend the consequences of their sin\mistakes through his grace and are born anew into "eternal life".

It is essentially one of the oldest narratives in literature and mythology. Death and rebirth. The phoenix rising from the ashes. So for me this is the "spiritual truth" I take from the physical story. It is the "born again story". The one who is reborn must go through a "metaphysical death". Dying to sin - reborn to "god".

"Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.” “How can a man be born when he is old? Nicodemus asked. “Can he enter his mother’s womb a second time to be born?” Jesus answered “Truly, truly, I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. "

I guess the thing I haven't understood from you is how you are connecting what physically happened - with what this was meant to represent spiritually. I may be completely wrong on this - but it seems like you want to change what physically happened so you can then adjust the "meaning" of the parable thus you are searching for alternative scriptures and translations. Can you explain to me exactly how you connect "what physically happened" with what it "spiritually represents". I think that would give me and also Finalword a better understanding of your view.

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Old 30th December 2017, 7:48 PM   #317
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For example, when I read the text you are writing on me. I am reading it literally...I am taking your words as it appears to me you intend for them to be taken. That's the most straightforward, rational way to read any text.
TFW, then you are not likely to ever grasp my full meaning, because I also use analogy, symbolism and similes as part of my verbal expression. If you take it literally...well... ...then you will run into the exact same problems as if you took Jesus’ parables literally. (We know that he was not actually referring to a physical-on-Earth wedding celebration, and bridegroom and guests, right? We know that there must be a deeper, hidden {esoteric} meaning behind his ‘literal’ words.) Equally so for, for example, ‘mustard seed’ and ‘camel through the eye of a needle’.

So, when I said, “It's a matter of either taking the Bible literally or seeking the deeper/hidden meanings,” I wasn’t actually talking about translations between Aramaic, Syrian or Koine Greek. I was saying, let’s start to think about what Jesus was actually alluding tospiritually or at a spiritual/higher level – when he talked about a ‘bridegroom’ and a ‘bride’. (The words, ‘bridegroom’ and ‘bride’, themselves are going to be translated basically the same, even in Koine Greek, or Jesus’ language <which we can also call ‘Hebrew’>, or English.)

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“How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked.
Have you read the The Gospel of Nicodemus (The Acts of Pontius Pilate)? In that same collection, you will find that ‘prodigal’ means ‘the son or daughter who left God’ – not someone who miraculously, and without merit, was redeemed by God.

TheFinalWord, I get that you see yourself as a student of Christian theology and doctrine, but, can we truly counsel Christians, as Barnabas would counsel, if we just always stay literal when it comes to interpreting Jesus’ sermons and teachings, and the New Testament and all the other apostles’ gospels, teachings and sermons?

BC1980’s doubt seems to me to be addressed in the epistle of Barnabas just mentioned. Jesus Christ came precisely to dispel such doubts, and to help BC1980 and all of the rest of us to come to the truth of the One True God. Would you, then, want to add to Christian doubt simply because of a predetermined (stubborn or prideful) position or view?
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Old 30th December 2017, 11:05 PM   #318
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Have you read the The Gospel of Nicodemus (The Acts of Pontius Pilate)? In that same collection, you will find that ‘prodigal’ means ‘the son or daughter who left God’ – not someone who miraculously, and without merit, was redeemed by God.

TheFinalWord, I get that you see yourself as a student of Christian theology and doctrine, but, can we truly counsel Christians, as Barnabas would counsel, if we just always stay literal when it comes to interpreting Jesus’ sermons and teachings, and the New Testament and all the other apostles’ gospels, teachings and sermons?

BC1980’s doubt seems to me to be addressed in the epistle of Barnabas just mentioned. Jesus Christ came precisely to dispel such doubts, and to help BC1980 and all of the rest of us to come to the truth of the One True God. Would you, then, want to add to Christian doubt simply because of a predetermined (stubborn or prideful) position or view?
I have never heard of either of these, so I will check them out.
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Old 31st December 2017, 6:03 AM   #319
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TheFinalWord, I get that you see yourself as a student of Christian theology and doctrine, but, can we truly counsel Christians, as Barnabas would counsel, if we just always stay literal when it comes to interpreting Jesus’ sermons and teachings, and the New Testament and all the other apostles’ gospels, teachings and sermons?
You can always look at deeper meanings, but that is predicated on having an accurate understanding of the basic meaning. You cannot arrive at valid deeper truths, if the most basic understanding is false. In other words, you cannot convey to me deeper understanding of Jesus' resurrection if you do not accept the basic truth that Jesus resurrection was physical.
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Old 2nd January 2018, 3:21 PM   #320
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In other words, you cannot convey to me deeper understanding of Jesus' resurrection if you do not accept the basic truth that Jesus resurrection was physical.
You state the obvious, my friend – and here I thought we were intellectually past that, by now! . On the other hand, if Jesus’ resurrection was NOT physical, then any understanding of it that is based on it having been physical will necessarily be wrong, won’t it?
(I don’t want to debate if it was or was not physical; I’m pointing out that all spiritual students need to be aware of other people’s primary worldview and will then be able to use critical analysis skills to recognize any inbuilt or inherent flaws in logic and arguments that arise from that worldview.)

If you read some of the Christian texts that are not included in the New Testament, for example, Letters of Herod and Pilate, denial of Jesus’ actual, physical resurrection seems, to me at least, to be more about resisting the truth. Even the signs surrounding Jesus’ moment of death on the cross must be seen in a new light, especially in view of the reports of ‘Charinus and Lenthius Recount their Experience upon being Raised from the Dead on Christ’s Resurrection’ (in The Gospel of Nicodemus, link in my previous post.)

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You can always look at deeper meanings,
If we want to live a genuine, truly spiritual life – as Jesus himself taught it (or any of the other true prophets, for that matter) – then seeking the esoteric or deeper/hidden spiritual significance of their outer words is an imperative, not an option.

This is clear even if we just take one example from Barnabus’ epistle (link in my previous post):
“BUT why did Moses say, Ye shall not eat of the swine…? Answer: that in the spiritual sense, he comprehended three doctrines, that were to be gathered from thence.
“Besides which he says to them in the book of Deuteronomy, And I will give my statutes unto this people. Wherefore it is not the Command of God that they should not eat these things; but Moses in the spirit spake unto them.
“Now the sow he forbade them to eat; meaning this much: thou shalt not join thyself to such persons as are like unto swine, who whilst they live in pleasure, forget their God, but when any want pinches them, then they know the Lord; as the sow when she is full knows not her master, but when she is hungry she makes a noise, and being again fed, is silent.”
So, if people just take the original, “Ye shall not eat of the swine,” literally – and then the only thing they do for their spiritual progress is refrain from consuming any physical pig-meat products – well, surely you yourself can see the consequence. (No need for me to state the obvious. .)
To me, also, we now need to apply a new standard of critical analysis whenever there is mention of ‘milk’ and of ‘meat’ and of ‘eating’ in spiritual texts – what is the spiritual or inner or higher meaning (the ‘solid food’), because there is always such for ‘those with ears to hear and eyes to see’, which means those who are willing to go beyond just the physical/literal.
Brothers, I could not address you as spiritual, but as worldly—as infants in Christ. I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for solid food. In fact, you are still not ready, for you are still worldly. ~ 1 Corinthians 3:2 [Berean Study Bible]
There are many references to ‘weddings, wedding guests, bridegrooms and brides’ – and, for the ‘infants in Christ’, they won’t go further than it being about wearing nice clothes (‘wedding garments’) when we attend physical weddings; and they will treat all references to ‘lamps, oil and lamp-stands’ in exactly the same way – as it being only about physical/outer lighting.
But, if we want or hope to ever become mature in Christ, then it behooves us to seek a mature view of his teachings and of his Mission and life in general.
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Old 3rd January 2018, 5:09 AM   #321
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You state the obvious, my friend – and here I thought we were intellectually past that, by now! .
So, just to clarify, you are agreeing with me that Christ's resurrection was physical? I must have missed that.
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Old 3rd January 2018, 3:08 PM   #322
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So, just to clarify, you are agreeing with me that Christ's resurrection was physical? I must have missed that.
TFW, in my response to you, I said, “...denial of Jesus’ actual, physical resurrection seems, to me at least, to be more about resisting the truth.” And, in another post in this thread, I said, “I do believe that when they went to find [Jesus’] body in the tomb, it was not there. This, we Christians call the Resurrection of Christ. I think it happened this way, but then I choose to apply, to my best current abilities, my own spiritual knowledge, and logic and intuition, to come to some type of conclusion about whether or not it was a physical or a spiritual ‘event’.”

To clarify: I think/believe that Jesus’ physical body went in to the tomb and it was not physically there when Lady Magda and the others went to look for it. That is the physical aspect.
However, I don’t keep that as some separate, non-spiritual event from which I cannot learn something to help my own spiritual progress or becoming mature in Christ. I put it in context with the fact that, even before his crucifixion, Jesus could do marvelous things with his physical body and through his physical body. I do not yet understand the spiritual meaning of the transfiguration of Jesus’ physical body and/or how that event supported his ability to raise up his physical body from the tomb. I also see Jesus’ ascension as both a physical and a non-physical event – one second he could be physically seen and the next he could not, which accomplishment, we of course cannot help but see a reflection of, in the resurrection. (I do, of course, understand the outer words explaining the physical-manifested phenomena surrounding the transfiguration; hopefully you realize that’s not what I’m talking about.)

Thus, I don’t fixate on the resurrection or, for that matter, any single demonstration of Jesus’ personal Christhood. If we look for the true ‘milestones’ in Jesus’ life, then we can eventually come to see the ‘Spiritual Initiations in Matter’ that he passed and publicly demonstrated. My understanding is that we each, individually, also need to pass all of them, culminating in ‘the Initiation of the Ascension’. I am aware that a purely literal study of the outer words in the currently-accepted Christian texts, teachings and doctrines will not bring you to see this; nevertheless, I believe that we need an understanding of how we can face and pass these Initiations ourselves. Put another way, we need to eventually be able to ‘put on our own wedding garment’ so that we can be united with the ‘Bridegroom’. These are not spiritual or Divine Mysteries that we are forbidden to know, or cannot or should not know.

There are priests, ministers and others who see themselves as spiritually advanced, who nevertheless will try to shame, humiliate or belittle me into silence or to not ask questions that they haven’t yet properly answered for themselves – if they’d even considered it in the first place – so, like BC1980, I also have struggled with my own ‘issues’ of how and why and what kind of God would allow this type of world to exist. People who want to know the answer to that question, in a way that seems reasonable and rational and is thus acceptable also to the linear/outer mind, obviously cannot get there by blind (and deaf and mute) faith, alone. The good news is that this is not the type of faith that Jesus taught or came to bring – “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”
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Old 3rd January 2018, 6:19 PM   #323
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For me my interpretation is very simple. Physical blood in the story of christ represents the life essence or "spirit" so to speak of god.
Justanaverageguy, Within a living physical body, our own physical blood may be associated with our own individual life-essence, yes – but, what has that to do with killing another human Being or spilling another human Being’s blood? (Even if you take Jesus as being one and the same as God, he still was in human form at the time of his murder/execution.)

If you accept that killing is against the Law of God, how do you reconcile that God must have desired, required or sanctioned the violation of God’s own Commandments for the killing of Jesus (or of God’s own human form, however you want to look at it) – just to give a gift to sinners including Lucifer and the Fallen Beings and their legions? Further, if killing Jesus/God and spilling his blood is a violation of the Law of God, how can this possibly, on any level, have been a spiritual act that might have or did result in anything spiritually constructive or positive?
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It is essentially one of the oldest narratives in literature and mythology. Death and rebirth. The phoenix rising from the ashes. So for me this is the "spiritual truth" I take from the physical story. It is the "born again story". The one who is reborn must go through a "metaphysical death". Dying to sin - reborn to "god".
It is a false teaching – designed to control people and keep them in spiritual ignorance and in a state of blind, mute and passive faith – that Jesus’ crucifixion-and-resurrection was God’s gift to sinners so that we do not need to do our own ‘dying to sin’ and ‘being reborn in God’. The spiritual truth is that we have to qualify ourselves to face and pass these Initiations ourselves. Jesus did not do it for us – or we would no longer need to embody on Earth; we would have transcended the Wheel of Birth and Rebirth.

Yes, it is a ‘born again’ story – which is the same as ‘a prodigal child returns’ story – but it is that we each individually need to return to God by ourselves, by our own path. We have to do the work ourselves; Jesus did not do it for us. (I don’t really understand a need to have had Jesus do it for us. I suppose it could be fear and unwillingness to take full spiritual responsibility for one’s own redemption and salvation – maybe fear of being unable to do that, than not being willing to personally do the work?)
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...it seems like you want to change what physically happened so you can then adjust the "meaning" of the parable thus you are searching for alternative scriptures and translations.
So...I’m not really sure what physical events, in the life and times of Jesus, it comes across that I want to change. I’m even more confused when you say that I want to “adjust the ‘meaning’ of the parable” – whose meaning, whose parable, and what parable??? (And, even if you say the pope’s, doesn’t mean that I don’t get to adjust his meaning of his parable however I want to! .)

As I already said to TFW, alternative translations only give a generally same overview of a word or passage. And, why not alternative scriptures when we are seeking spiritual truths? Bhuddism and Manichaeism (for but two examples) have as much to offer as the Christian texts. Most assuredly, though, I do not limit myself only to ancient and centuries-old documents – I do also accept expressions of the Living Word, although I am selective about current-day messengers (which, if I’m not mistaken, you have mentioned at least one whom you yourself follow – is it also in an attempt to “adjust the ‘meaning’ of the parable”?)


As BC1980 expressed, when we are trying to make sense of death and suffering on this planet, the answer is not always available in only one or another form, or religion, or area of study – to me, there is nothing wrong with keeping an open mind and a more dynamic worldview that can change to accommodate new scientific facts or spiritual insights as they come into our awareness – while at the same time being willing to reconsider and eliminate what is clearly non-constructive or potentially holding back our own spiritual growth and progress

In Light and Love.
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Old 4th January 2018, 1:49 AM   #324
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First up - happy new year all. Hope you had a wonderful start to 2018 Now on to the discussion .....

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It is a false teaching – designed to control people and keep them in spiritual ignorance and in a state of blind, mute and passive faith – that Jesus’ crucifixion-and-resurrection was God’s gift to sinners so that we do not need to do our own ‘dying to sin’ and ‘being reborn in God’. The spiritual truth is that we have to qualify ourselves to face and pass these Initiations ourselves. Jesus did not do it for us – or we would no longer need to embody on Earth; we would have transcended the Wheel of Birth and Rebirth. Yes, it is a ‘born again’ story – which is the same as ‘a prodigal child returns’ story – but it is that we each individually need to return to God by ourselves, by our own path. We have to do the work ourselves; Jesus did not do it for us. (I don’t really understand a need to have had Jesus do it for us. I suppose it could be fear and unwillingness to take full spiritual responsibility for one’s own redemption and salvation – maybe fear of being unable to do that, than not being willing to personally do the work?)
So like I said earlier I don't disagree that some sections of the christian church misunderstand the teaching but I wouldn't call it completely false. If you read Jesus words - the scripture itself is pure. Claiming that "jesus did all the work" is misguided and he never said any such thing. Of course we still need to do our part which he spoke of numerous times. But I do believe Jesus actions were necessary to provide a new avenue - a new path to god that previously didn't exist. This is what many (I would say most) christian teachings speak of. That being a kind of spiritual intervention\redemption - where by the spirit of god directly enters a sinner and restores them both physically and spiritually. I already mentioned earlier how this is something I experienced personally. While running off on the wrong the path - being directly entered by the holy spirit and restored and brought back to the fold. With out this avenue many would be spiritually lost.

My view is Jesus physical life provided the avenue for this to occur. His laying down his physical life - was necessary for him to be able to perform the same with his "spiritual body" which he sacrifices for this restoration to occur. This is how I view the purpose of his life - to provide this avenue. Once restored however ..... the work still falls to us to use our second chance wisely. Life is perpetual - thus the gift of eternal life is not something that you earn once for eternity. It must be continually earned again - and again - and again. There is no saved forever - but there is a lost forever and jesus life and actions provided a safety net so to speak.

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So...I’m not really sure what physical events, in the life and times of Jesus, it comes across that I want to change. I’m even more confused when you say that I want to “adjust the ‘meaning’ of the parable” – whose meaning, whose parable, and what parable??? (And, even if you say the pope’s, doesn’t mean that I don’t get to adjust his meaning of his parable however I want to! .)
Well from what I have read your view seemed to go against Jesus words regarding the new covenant. You stated on numerous occasions that personal karma must be balanced by the individual and there is no possibility for others to intervene. EG:

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"How I interpret it is that we must settle our own spiritual or karmic debts down to the last ‘jot and stroke of pen’; it’s our responsibility and we must do it personally, individually. "
My view based on personal experience and the words of Jesus in the NT is that he came with a new convenant. One that superseeds the "old law". This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you. Jesus told the exact same parable many different ways - over and over again to try to convey the message he came for. The born again parable - the prodigal son parable - the lost sheep parable - the good shephard parable - the barren fig and the vinyard keeper parable. Its the exact same story on repeat in different metaphorical forms - and his own physical life tells the exact same story. Jesus\God sacrifices himself and puts you on his shoulders and carries you - fertilizes the ground around you - restores your "money" that you wastedon sinful actions - refills you lantern when you have wasted all the oil. Otherwise you would have been lost. This was the new covenant - a new agreement not previously available. It goes above and beyond the previous law of personal karma which was all that was previously available.

He directly spoke to the differences between the old law - that of karma - and his "new covenant" that of spiritual restoration of sinners through the parable of the wine skins.

"And he spake also a parable unto them; No man putteth a piece of a new garment upon an old; if otherwise, then both the new maketh a rent, and the piece that was taken out of the new agreeth not with the old. And no man putteth new wine into old bottles; else the new wine will burst the bottles, and be spilled, and the bottles shall perish. But new wine must be put into new bottles; and both are preserved. No man also having drunk old wine straightway desireth new: for he saith, The old is better."

Here he states that the old method - that of following Karmic law of our own accord is the best and purest method. But he comes a new path a new covenant - new wine. Available to sinners to restore them. If one can follow the old path - it is preferable to the later which requires restoration through him. Basically we have covered this ground already. I see Jesus life as the embodyment of this parable and my understanding is so does the majority of the christian church. You advocate for the "old wine" as well you should. But Jesus came with new wine for those who couldn't manage this and just quitely - even if you think you can ..... its pretty good to know you have him at your back should you make some serious errors as I did.

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As I already said to TFW, alternative translations only give a generally same overview of a word or passage. And, why not alternative scriptures when we are seeking spiritual truths? Bhuddism and Manichaeism (for but two examples) have as much to offer as the Christian texts. Most assuredly, though, I do not limit myself only to ancient and centuries-old documents – I do also accept expressions of the Living Word, although I am selective about current-day messengers (which, if I’m not mistaken, you have mentioned at least one whom you yourself follow – is it also in an attempt to “adjust the ‘meaning’ of the parable”?) As BC1980 expressed, when we are trying to make sense of death and suffering on this planet, the answer is not always available in only one or another form, or religion, or area of study – to me, there is nothing wrong with keeping an open mind and a more dynamic worldview that can change to accommodate new scientific facts or spiritual insights as they come into our awareness – while at the same time being willing to reconsider and eliminate what is clearly non-constructive or potentially holding back our own spiritual growth and progress
Sure absolutely agree and yes your correct - I also follow other teachings as well But I think the new teachings need to be "compatible" with what we already know to be true - so as always we need to be careful when judging new teachings which I'm sure you are. As Jesus said "Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep's clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves". The rule of thumb is as jesus stated always to judge a tree by the fruit it bears. See the lives of the teacher and the people that follow the teaching ..... see if they are truly producing "good fruit" and asses based on this.

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Old 4th January 2018, 2:31 AM   #325
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Hello Ronni,

Thanks for your thoughtful reply. Happy New Year to you and average guy!

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TFW, in my response to you, I said, “...denial of Jesus’ actual, physical resurrection seems, to me at least, to be more about resisting the truth.” And, in another post in this thread, I said, “I do believe that when they went to find [Jesus’] body in the tomb, it was not there. This, we Christians call the Resurrection of Christ. I think it happened this way, but then I choose to apply, to my best current abilities, my own spiritual knowledge, and logic and intuition, to come to some type of conclusion about whether or not it was a physical or a spiritual ‘event’.”
To clarify: I think/believe that Jesus’ physical body went in to the tomb and it was not physically there when Lady Magda and the others went to look for it. That is the physical aspect.
Thank you for clarifying. When you said earlier, you thought we were past this, the above response is why I wanted clarity. What I mean by physical resurrection is different than what you mean by a physical resurrection. Both in terms of what a physical resurrection means, but also its significance to the core tenants of Christianity. But that is okay, we just have a disagreement here, hence the purpose of this forum!

I believe Christ's interaction with Thomas and the disciples after his resurrection, for example, is critical to understanding not only what Christ's resurrection means, but also it clarifies all of the old testament prophecies about the resurrection of the dead at the end of time.

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Thus, I don’t fixate on the resurrection or, for that matter, any single demonstration of Jesus’ personal Christhood.
I believe they are important as the miracles Christ accomplished legitimized his claim as Messiah. For example, the feeding of the 5000. The Jews at that time knew immediately what that miracle meant. Moses fed the Jews with manna, and what Christ fed them with was greater than manna. Hence, what I mean about the literal and the spiritual. Christ literally fed the 5000 with actual food. But he also implied a spiritual lesson that the real manna was his body, which was sacrificed for our sins. He also clarified the spiritual meaning of the miracle through his teachings (e.g. bread of life). He even ordained communion to help us remember the physical act of his death (the passion) and pouring out of his blood.

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If we look for the true ‘milestones’ in Jesus’ life, then we can eventually come to see the ‘Spiritual Initiations in Matter’ that he passed and publicly demonstrated. My understanding is that we each, individually, also need to pass all of them, culminating in ‘the Initiation of the Ascension’.
I don't believe that Christ's resurrection is meant to transmit to us that we are undergoing our own initiation of the ascension.

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There are priests, ministers and others who see themselves as spiritually advanced, who nevertheless will try to shame, humiliate or belittle me into silence or to not ask questions that they haven’t yet properly answered for themselves – if they’d even considered it in the first place – so, like BC1980, I also have struggled with my own ‘issues’ of how and why and what kind of God would allow this type of world to exist.
I am sorry you have experienced that. A true minister should know that they are not spiritually advanced. The only insight they have is due to what little revelation God has revealed to them. All good they accomplish is not through their own power or "spiritual advancement". It is accomplished only by God the Father working through them. All of our good works are as filthy rags before the Lord. We are only justified by grace in the sacrifice of Christ, as evidenced by His physical resurrection (proving that he defeated death, e.g. nor did his body see decay, Psalms 16:10; Acts 13:35), not good works. One area I do agree with you is that we should not put our faith in man. If we start putting a pastor or minister on a pedestal above Christ, we will be disappointed. They are sinners saved by grace.

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“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.”


Thanks for that verse Ronni! Anyway, I am starting to feel a bit bad as I don't want you to think I am ganging up on you. However, if you want to perhaps discuss, maybe we could start a new thread? I also don't want to hijack BC1980's thread...

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Old 4th January 2018, 6:07 PM   #326
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Anyway, I am starting to feel a bit bad as I don't want you to think I am ganging up on you. However, if you want to perhaps discuss, maybe we could start a new thread? I also don't want to hijack BC1980's thread...
TFW, I actually think that our discussions are remaining on-topic (whereas I felt that Justanaverageguy and I were going off on tangents). However, BC1980, if you would rather have these more recent posts moved to a new thread, please do not feel badly about asking the mods to do that.

TFW, I don’t feel ‘ganged-up on’ by you - I appreciate being able to share our views.

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> what a physical resurrection means, but also its significance to the core tenants of Christianity...
> I believe [the resurrection and other demonstrations of Jesus’ personal Christhood] are important...
> I don't believe that Christ's resurrection is meant to transmit to us that we are undergoing our own initiation of the ascension.
To be honest, I’d never considered that ‘physical resurrection’ could mean other than ‘physical resurrection’ – but I’m happy to expand my view on that, if needed. For me, Lazarus also went through a physical resurrection, but perhaps others don’t see it that way – from your perspective, does there need to be a physical etherealization or ‘dematerialization’ of all the physical atoms and electrons that make up the physical body (as happened with Jesus’ physical body) for it to be what you mean by ‘physical resurrection’? (Without going into a whole ‘everything-is-Energy-and-Energy-cannot-be-destroyed’ discussion, that’s the crux of my view on this.)

I agree with you – wholeheartedly and 100% - that all of Jesus’ ministry, up to his ascension and including his ‘miracles’ and resurrection, are important. For me they are important for our individual, personal spiritual learning and progress. Certainly his resurrection does not speak to us about the Initiation of the Ascension; his actual ascension does that. His resurrection demonstrates the Initiation of Resurrection. Both Initiations form part of the process of us ‘being born again in God’ or ‘returning Home to God’, that Justanaverageguy mentions.

(Just to be clear: It’s not that we are facing either one of these Initiations right now; most of us still have a long way to go before we will be spiritually qualified to face them.)

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Life is perpetual - thus the gift of eternal life is not something that you earn once for eternity. It must be continually earned again - and again - and again. There is no saved forever - but there is a lost forever
Our spiritual life is perpetual, yes; our ‘Soul’ needs to be ever-transcending. But this is not the same as: once we have reached our personal ascension point, we can permanently rise above the need to re-embody in the material world of form – or, put another way, if we understand and truly follow Jesus’ teachings and admonishments, then we can free ourselves from the cycle of suffering, death and rebirth. There are unascended Beings and Ascended Beings. Any of the latter can, of course, always ‘fall’ again – as Lucifer did – but we are still so far below that (level of consciousness) that it need not be a concern at this point.

Being ‘lost to God forever’ entails a Lifestream or Spiritual Being choosing for itself what, in The Book of Revelation, is called the Second Death. To my present understanding, if we ever get to that point, it will be a very conscious decision on our part, so, again, nothing to fear at this point.


You and I have a very different understanding of the ‘new wine and wineskins’ parable. If you want to take it as you no longer needing to personally balance your own negative Karma, then that is your free-will spiritual decision to make. If you also follow some Bhuddist practices (which, if I’m not mistaken, you do), then I’m sure that you have reconciled, to your full satisfaction, all the differences between Christian teachings on Karma and Bhuddist teachings on the same – or, if not yet, are still working on such a reconciliation.

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> But I think the new teachings need to be "compatible" with what we already know to be true -
> The rule of thumb is as jesus stated always to judge a tree by the fruit it bears. See the lives of the teacher and the people that follow the teaching ..... see if they are truly producing "good fruit"
My personal motto is, “I don’t know what I don’t know.” It helps to keep me humble, and stops me from getting into spiritual pride and arrogance of thinking that I already know what is and is not spiritually true; by which I mean: true IN CHRIST and true IN GOD, not ‘true amongst men’ or according to what human Beings want to be or tell themselves actually is (spiritually, or, for that matter, scientifically) true.

As TheFinalWord pointed out, if you start off with a false premise for your basic ‘truth’, then you cannot help but be misled and misguided from there; you cannot have true Christ Discernment, and thus you will not be able to properly/accurately assess who, IN THE EYE OF GOD, is and is not producing ‘good fruit’.

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I am sorry you have experienced that.
Thanks, TFW. I think that all serious spiritual students experience the same thing, though. There are many, at all levels of creation, who would not see the Light of Christ on Earth, so persecution is just part of the Path of Personal Christhood – as Jesus himself will attest to! .

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I never doubted the concept of free will until I realized that I couldn't will myself to believe in God or Jesus.
BC, it can indeed be a quandary and a challenge! . So far as wanting to, in a sense, ‘force’ yourself to believe in any concept, idea or image about which your heart and/or your mind is telling you, “This isn’t right/proper,” or even, “This isn’t God-like or Christ-like” – to me, it is a better, more constructive thing to heed your own Inner/Intuitive Voice and follow where and how it directs.

It also may (or may not?) help to think of your will power as functioning separately from your free will, the latter being a bit more complex than we may think – which I myself only found out in more recent years, when I was still mightily struggling with my own questions and anger at God, or, at least, at my own concept/version/image of ‘God the Creator’, at that time.
I don’t know if you follow current authors/messengers – if not, just ignore this next bit, please. For me, I found articles such as are available on this page on Free Will, very helpful to start to turn my thinking around. Not that it stopped being a struggle...only that it got better over time and with my leaving no stone unturned as I continued plugging away at it.

Thanks again, BC, and all contributors to this thread; and wishing you much joy and attainment on your own path.
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Old 7th January 2018, 12:12 PM   #327
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I thought I would make a thread about this ongoing issue in my life because I don't feel comfortable talking to anyone about it. I've always had doubts about the existence of God, but those doubts never seemed to matter until the past few years. To me, the world seems depressing and pointless without the hope of God or an afterlife. I think a lot of this has been spurred on by seeing my parents get older and finding it very depressing that when they die, they may cease to exist and I'll never see them again.

Part of me thinks religion is a complete sham that we made up because we are all scared to die. Heck, we spend our entire lives fighting against death. Another part of me feels that the idea that God doesn't exist is just as preposterous. How can the world be so complex without some kind of divine creator? I'm not really interested in debating if God exists or not. I'm looking for people who have similar struggles who would like to share how they cope. I feel like my mind is full of strife on a daily basis, and it's kind of affecting me negatively at this point.
BC1980,

I have struggled with having faith my entire life. Many of the sentiments you have described resonate with me.

How do I cope with my struggling faith? There are a few things that I consider when wondering about my lack of faith:

1) The current times. There used to be a time in history where simply saying these doubts aloud would have been considered blasphemy and severe consequences could have been brought about the “struggling” individual. That being said, I think it’s a lot easier to have doubts in a society that is becoming more agnostic/atheist. It’s my opinion that cultural and societal beliefs have a HUGE impact on an individual’s perception of the world. Therefore, had I been brought up in a time where God-fearing people were paramount, perhaps my faith would be less in question. At this time in my life, I know far more people who are either indifferent to religion/faith or are agnostic/atheist. IDK, this is just something that I think about.

2) The idea that faith and religion are synonymous. I used to struggle with my faith because I had a hard time adhering to religious ideologies. In the course of my 32 year old life, I’ve been a participant in the Catholic, Baptist, Jehovah’s Witness, and Mormon religions. They all believe in Jesus Christ as the savior and all read the Holy-Bible, but their tenets and perceptions of the Bible and God are all very different. Having difficulty adhering to their ideologies, I automatically found myself denying my faith. But as I look at my belief system now, I conclude that faith and religion are not necessarily synonymous and that perhaps I simply haven’t found the missing piece to my puzzle.

In short, I don’t think that anyone can truly ever be 100% doubtless or devout. Accepting that one has doubts does not make one an atheist and accepting that one is devout does not eliminate doubt.
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Old 8th January 2018, 11:13 AM   #328
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Thanks for that verse Ronni! Anyway, I am starting to feel a bit bad as I don't want you to think I am ganging up on you. However, if you want to perhaps discuss, maybe we could start a new thread? I also don't want to hijack BC1980's thread...
I'm fine with the thread going off on some tangents. I think the original topic is so broad that it can't help but go off on other tangents at times. Sorry I haven't responded in the last few days to some really great posts. This thread always makes me think a little harder, and I've been kinda busy for the past few days.
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Old 8th January 2018, 11:18 AM   #329
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BC1980,

I have struggled with having faith my entire life. Many of the sentiments you have described resonate with me.

How do I cope with my struggling faith? There are a few things that I consider when wondering about my lack of faith:

1) The current times. There used to be a time in history where simply saying these doubts aloud would have been considered blasphemy and severe consequences could have been brought about the “struggling” individual. That being said, I think it’s a lot easier to have doubts in a society that is becoming more agnostic/atheist. It’s my opinion that cultural and societal beliefs have a HUGE impact on an individual’s perception of the world. Therefore, had I been brought up in a time where God-fearing people were paramount, perhaps my faith would be less in question. At this time in my life, I know far more people who are either indifferent to religion/faith or are agnostic/atheist. IDK, this is just something that I think about.

2) The idea that faith and religion are synonymous. I used to struggle with my faith because I had a hard time adhering to religious ideologies. In the course of my 32 year old life, I’ve been a participant in the Catholic, Baptist, Jehovah’s Witness, and Mormon religions. They all believe in Jesus Christ as the savior and all read the Holy-Bible, but their tenets and perceptions of the Bible and God are all very different. Having difficulty adhering to their ideologies, I automatically found myself denying my faith. But as I look at my belief system now, I conclude that faith and religion are not necessarily synonymous and that perhaps I simply haven’t found the missing piece to my puzzle.

In short, I don’t think that anyone can truly ever be 100% doubtless or devout. Accepting that one has doubts does not make one an atheist and accepting that one is devout does not eliminate doubt.
Thank you for sharing. I agree that we all have doubts at some point. The majority of us anyway. My faith has ebbed and flowed. There have been times I've had no doubt in God and and afterlife, and there have been times when I've thought the entire concept is stupid. The older I've gotten, the more concerned I've become about dying and what happens after that. What is the point of life, ect? I suppose that's to be expected.
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Old 8th January 2018, 2:50 PM   #330
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I'm fine with the thread going off on some tangents. I think the original topic is so broad that it can't help but go off on other tangents at times. Sorry I haven't responded in the last few days to some really great posts. This thread always makes me think a little harder, and I've been kinda busy for the past few days.
That's cool!

I understand. Me either. The responses have gotten long and it takes a lot of time to respond as you have break each paragraph down. But I will get back in here as well!
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