Calling all Christians

JuLeah - posted on 02/13/2011 ( 75 moms have responded )

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Okay, another can of worms. Please know, I am asking. I don’t mean to offend. Mostly.

I have a new roommate who is a ‘born again Christian’ and self identifies as ‘fundamental.



I am Jewish.



Let me start by saying I know many many Christian who don't believe as my roommate does, so I am not speaking about all.



Okay, so as he has explained things to me, any day (and I mean any day) Jesus will be putting in an appearance for the second time.



Everyone who believes as my roommate does will be … forgot the word … but basically, sucked up into haven to spend all eternity with Jesus. The rest of us will be left here.



Now, you have to be a Christian like he is (my roommate) and not just any old Christian. You have to believe what he believes, exactly as he believes, and you have to be thinking about Jesus when Jesus arrives or you won’t get sucked up.



He tells me that he will catch himself throughout the day not thinking about Jesus and shake in his boots; What if that had been the moment?



It goes without says, I am not going.



Now, to be flip, I am not really seeing the down side to this event and may be the first Jew in history to be praying for it to happen. Think about it. Who is leaving? All the folks that don’t much like me anyway. My family and friends will all be here and we will have dealt with the surplus population.



But, as I understand, it will not be as good as all of that, because us left here are in for a bad bad time. Fire, damnation, pain, suffering, darkness (except for the fires) … you get the idea.



So, here finally, is my question. I was taught that we humans have free will. Why don’t born again Christian believe in free will?



Now my roommate says, “Of course you have free will. You have a choice.”



My choice is “Do what I say or go to hell” ??? That is a choice?



A friend of my Aunt was robbed at gun point some years back. They caught the fellow and he said in his defense, “But she gave me her purse”



And, in fact, she had. He put a gun to her head, asked for the purse, and she handed it right over.



But, and here is what the prosecuting side countered with, she was not really given a choice.



If you are not free to say No, then you are not free to say Yes.



So, whatup with the free will thing? Why would Jesus, who sounds based on all reports to be a wonderful fellow, want to put people in this position? Why would Jesus want people with him who are only there cause they don't wanna go to hell? To do this to someone doesn't seem like the Jesus I have come to understand through other conversations with folks who believe in him.

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Dana - posted on 02/14/2011

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There's a problem with your post though Kati, no Christian thinks that your father can just say he believes and then get into heaven. That isn't how Christianity works, I don't think you fully understand how it does work from your posts that I've read.

Jenni - posted on 02/14/2011

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Well I'm going to stop pretending I actually understand the Bible. Take it literally, don't take it literally. All the contradictions, it's crypticness. What scripture is the word of God, which isn't.
I just hope for everyone who is religious that God isn't petty enough to condemn your soul because you picked the wrong thing to believe about him.

Desiree - posted on 02/14/2011

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We should always remember the bible was written by men not by heavenly being who had nothing to gain. So its all up to interpretation.

Jenni - posted on 02/13/2011

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Sorry I'm not religious... but I did have that gun held to my head when I was a kid... so maybe my input won't mean much but...

Isn't Jesus, God, the Holy Spirit all one? So when Jesus said "Believe in me and thou shalt be saved" he was possibly just refering to belief in God? Not just himself? Ahhh... but then there's good old John 3:16 "For God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten son. That whosoever believeth in him shall not perish but have eternal life."

Do you really think God, an infinite being; would be so petty as to not allow certain people into his crib because of what scripture they choose to believe or not believe? Or how they interpret scripture?

Man if getting into heaven is a lottory I already lost because I didn't buy the damn ticket.



Edit to add: God really needs to update his FaceBook profile more often. I can't seem to keep track of which religion he is currently in a relationship with. Seriously dude, pick a religion and stick with it... stop being such a mad playa!



"God has changed his relationship status to "single".'



Jennifer Tofflemire awwww *hugs*

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Sal - posted on 03/20/2011

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i would define my religion as christian but i have found the born agains that i have had anything to do with very hard to deal with, i am sure that there are many many wonderful born again christians out there (i just haven't met them) one guy i knew was so ridgid that there is no room for anything but his way, the fact that i was christened a christian, i chose to become confirmed as a teenager wasn't enough i still wasn't getting into heaven, i never used drigs, no criminal habbits, pretty tame love life, but he was, even though he had a checkered past, drugs, petty crimes, promisurity all that jazz but the fact he was "born again" put him in the right group....the thing i really couldn't take to was that someone who didn't have any concept of god and religion (i used a lost tribe /remot goat hearder sort of person in my argument) had lived a good life, cared for his family helped his neigbours, loved his land and animals couldn't go to heaven because he hadn't "given by free will his commitment to jesus" hmmmm who do i think should get in, not the petty thief, id go the remot goat herder....
another "friend" suggested i should ask forgiveness for my sin....i asked just the one??? surely i have more than 1....he looked like i had 3 heads and said "your son was born out of wedlock, thats what you should ask forgivenss for" hmmm my son is my sin, not buying that one it is the year 2000 buddy.....

Isobel - posted on 03/20/2011

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Every generation since the inception of the bible there has been a group who have believed they were living in end days...you are living a LONG, fine tradition.

Johnny - posted on 03/19/2011

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What if it's all true? Well, then... fantastic!!! Sounds like it will all be quite a fascinating journey. For a non-believer though, it's just about as likely that the bible is true than as Harrry Potter was a real wizard living in England. Personally, I'd rather Harry Potter were true, but if the bible is, that would be interesting too. Especially seeing how all the contradicting truths in the bible manage to work themselves out. As for that mighty god, I'm sure if he's up there he's not to concerned about what we think. But that's just me. I just could never believe in those stories no matter how hard I tried.

[deleted account]

I loved those books! I have no clue how it's going to happen and I don't spend my time worrying about it, but I love those books. :)

[deleted account]

I said on page 2, don't watch the movies - they were STUPID. Read the books - WAY better :) My biggest problem with them though is that people seem to think the events int he book are for sure going to happen, when in fact the books are the interpretation of what *could* happen as seen by the authors :)

Kelley - posted on 03/19/2011

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What if it's all true?
What's not to love about a Mghty God who didn't have to give us a way out (Jesus sacrifice) and yet we are worth it to Him?
It wasn't fear that brought me drew me to Him, It was overwhelming acceptance that won me.
How many people do you know that even in your worst moment/betrayal, still want to fight for you?

Mrs. - posted on 03/19/2011

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Ah, the "Left Behind" Christians. I think Kirk Cameron may have taken over for Jesus for them, but I don't know for sure.
Here's a link to a movie about the whole vanishing Christians-hellfire for the Jews/others thing. The Washington Post called it, "...a blundering cringefest, thanks to unintentionally laughable dialogue, hackneyed writing and uninspired direction. The more this movie tries, the worse it gets. Its sincerity ends up becoming a bulging bull's-eye for rotten-tomato throwers." Could be an interesting Netflicks choice, no? ;)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Left_Behind...

Kelley - posted on 03/19/2011

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Not so, When Jesus returns all will be restored! no sickness or disease, etc...

But make no mistakes HE will be doing the kicking ass! in the final round.

It's my favorite part of the story :)

Kelley - posted on 03/19/2011

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Rapture, I think there are alot of misconceptions out there. There is the thinking that 'Poof" the body of Christ is pulled from the world, that thinking is because of a scripture that says the hindering spirit (the Followers of Jesus who pray against the enemies of god and man) will be removed so that the antichrist will then rule, and then God will pour out judgment, the reason for the followers of Christ being pulled is because He assured His followers that there is 'no comdenation' in Jesus (that's probably why I try Extremely hard not to be condemming or judgemental because we were also warned as Christians that howerver harsh we have been with judgement, the same measure will be applied to us).
Some think they are in the tribulation now.
That particular part is in Revelation, and I'm sure there's more to the story than we could really know, Revelation is a scripture writtten in code and symbolism and it's events aren't nessiceraly told in order.
HE is a God of grace, and mercies, and love.

Isobel - posted on 03/19/2011

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no...it's about the end times...I forget what it's called now...when the good Christians get sucked up to the sky to live with Jesus and leave the rest of us here to burn ;)

Kelley - posted on 03/19/2011

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Hey I just got here, who's leaving?

I thought the question was about why Christians believe Jesus is the'Only way to the Father'?

I'll look for the going away question, I think I saw it in this thread?

anyway, as to the roommate having to think about Jesus 'All the time'. well, in my personal faith (by the way that's exaclty what we are called to do ... work out our Faith as Christians on a personal level - not to everyone's elses standards)

I try to live my faith in everyday, with how I treat others and my realtionships.

I don't think we were supposed to constantly feel like its a quiz or test with every moment, doesn't that kind negate the fact that as a Christian it's not me who saves me, but Christ Jesus already did that?

Mabel - posted on 03/19/2011

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I love that website Kati!!!! Only the ones left behind can really do a good job of taking over the care for a religious persons pets.....hahaha kind of ironic I think =)

Kelley - posted on 03/19/2011

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Hi Juleah, This is a great discussion, so where do I begin? How 'bout with relatability. Before I made th decision that I wanted to be a follower of Yesua Messhaic, I felt very 'forced' on the issue. I grew up in a traditional christian home. I grew up knowing that Jesus was born of a virgin, He is God's only begotten son, and that He died on the cross and rose again on the third day. I already believed it. but I had no personal relationship.
I worked in a factory that actually built amplifiiers for the fire and food of the mission field... and then in late years it didn't hurt their busines that Micheal Jackson and cindy Lauper, etc.. (showing my age a little) found the product we built to be 'Good stuff :) anway. These women on the assembly line would talk about church and their faith and I used to just tune them out and thnk 'yeh-yeh'yeh ' Iknow Got it!
It asn't until I had to come to terms with the fact that I wouldn't and couldnt' be perfect and to be in the presence of God I had to be sinnless, just because litterally sinn cannot co-incide with HIM.
My personal relationship and realizing just what Jesus-Yeshua really did for me really impacted me in full when my brother died. He was a young man and cut short in life, but when I realize That the Heavenly father Loved us so much that His Son was the only perfect sacrifice that would pay the price of my sin... Everybody's sin that I understood why the ONE way to the Father had to be throught Yeshua. It's no different than a Jailer (Satan) hold all of our sins in front of the Judge (Creator of the Universe) and let's face it all of us are guilty of sin in our lives, But when He's sees His Son's perfect sacrifice, and the blood that paid the price for that then the enemy no-longer has any hold on us. The accuser must stop the accusations because the jailers fee was paid for in full.
How does my brother bring this so close to my heart? If anyone has ever lost a child - especially one who was innocent, or you've ever watch your parents go through the agony of loosing their child, and believe me I was their when my mother was given the news... she made a sound that only wounded anilmals make and quite honestly the kind of wanted to die, even wished they could've died for my brother, You see God has this kind of love toward us and Jesus His only begotten son also loved us this much that HE laid down his life that our Heavenly Father would have this kind of loss any longer.
Sooo if some one were to come to the door and say "Hey Jason sent me to you I loved him - (especially if you apply this to a soldier- they lay down their lives for us everyday) those parents are going to receive you!!! But if you disregard the sacrifice and trample on that life given then will they not turn you away? How much more so is this for Your Heavenly Father?
Kelley

Becky - posted on 02/15/2011

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Your roommate has some ummm, interesting views. I have never heard that we have to be thinking about Jesus every moment or we won't end up in heaven. Yikes! Since I'm typically preoccupied with keeping my 2 daredevil toddlers alive, I guess I'm doomed!
I do believe in Jesus as the Son of God and in his sacrifice for our sins. I also believe that it is up to God to decide what happens to us after we die, not up to us. I am not going to presume to judge who will be in heaven, whatever that may be in actuality.

Johnny - posted on 02/15/2011

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Well, if this is hell, then for me it's really not all that bad. Certainly not bad enough for me to take up a "personal relationship" with a god that I don't really believe in at all. I always thought hell was really supposed to be all about constantly burning agony and torture. Like a deterrent against bad behavior. If I'm already in hell, then I might as well just live it up.

Merry - posted on 02/15/2011

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According to my little explanation, this is sort of like hell. Garden was 'heaven' we sinned so we got sent out of heaven into 'hell' which is what we call earth! Then we get a shot at the second heaven or go to a more permanent hell. And then of course the new heaven and the new earth and stuff.

But, yeah, earth is like pre-hell.

If hell is just being separated from god then that's what earth is to all who don't have a personal relationship with god.

[deleted account]

JuLeah,
I'm not weighing in on this one, but I just wanted to let you know that your OP CRACKED ME UP! I've been sick for over a week and that made me laugh so hard...I needed it! Especially this part:
Now, to be flip, I am not really seeing the down side to this event and may be the first Jew in history to be praying for it to happen. Think about it. Who is leaving? All the folks that don’t much like me anyway. My family and friends will all be here and we will have dealt with the surplus population.

I'm not Jewish. I used to be a Christian. I am now pretty much Agnostic. But that is some funny shit, and along the lines of why I'm not a Christian anymore.....

I also couldn't agree more with the line, "If you are not free to say No, then you are not free to say Yes." Not to be flip but, AMEN! LOL

[deleted account]

Laura, I absolutely love everything you just said. Especially about not understanding everything. Of course we don't. We aren't God. All I know for SURE is that He knows what He's doing.... even though I haven't got a clue.

Merry - posted on 02/15/2011

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To me it's something like this, god made man and woman perfect, sinless, and they lived in 'heaven' on earth. He said don't eat this fruit, but left us capable of disobeying. They chose to disobey, so they had a consequence for that action-hell, separation from god.

If god is perfect, he can't accept imperfection, not like he doesn't want to, but because he is actually perfect he literally can't be with imperfection.

So he sort of had a bust, his creation chose against him. He took them from their 'heaven' and let the sin they chose affect their lives.

Humans got wicked and yet god still wanted them to be able to redeem themselves because we are his creation that he cares for. So he set up some strict laws including sacrifices for the people to be able to redeem their souls so to speak.

They, if they wanted, could now try to follow his words, and ask for forgiveness, and sacrifice to redeem their sins.

Then god sent Jesus to be the perfect sacrifice.

Jesus took all the sins past present and future and paid the debt when he let us kill him. Now our sins are paid for, all we need to do is acknowledge his payment and accept gods forgiveness. If we do this, we are 'cleared' our sins and we can be in fellowship with god. Because we aren't covered up by our sins.

So, when we die we are as if we had never sinned, and we go to the second 'heaven' he has made since we wrecked the garden.

Those who choose not to accept jesus' payment and who don't ask god for forgiveness aren't getting punished, they are getting what they 'deserve' from sinning in the first place in the garden.



Ok, I have a hard time with the whole hell thing, I just feel that god is too loving to make his children suffer so much. I have a hard time thinking he can let people die who have never heard of Jesus go to hell. And what about those who were raised in a religion without Jesus, do they go to hell?

Idk, I don't have all the answers.

I guess it just comes down to the immense power of gods perfection. Like he is so completely without fault that he literally can't coexist with anyone who is sinful.

But I struggle thinking about, say the native Americans. They never even heard jesus' name until we came and started taking their land and killing them. Do they have no shot at heaven?

Idk

Sorry, I know Christians always seem to have it all wrapped up in a neat bow, but really, we don't always understand everything. But the main points of what I believe do seem crystal clear to me and I hope that as I search for answers I will be comforted.

If not, who knows. But thing about people in hell just puts me in a horrible mood, I don't think anyone deserves to go to hell.

Janessa - posted on 02/15/2011

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It was not just the sumerians that believe in history of creation but that of africans and mayans all those stories relate to one another.

Janessa - posted on 02/15/2011

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Actually allot that is in the Jewish bible or the christian bible came from the Sumerians. So that is why I have a hard time believing todays relgion. I do believe in God and I feel it but I do not believe in today religions really. Because I believe there is aliens and life in our universe and the religions keep humans down and not wanting people to seek the truth how we came to this earth.

Rosie - posted on 02/14/2011

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or cyndel, you can be a MUCH better person than most "christians" claim to be, and still theoretically not get into heaven. how is it that my scum bag, murdering, rapist, abusing father can say he believes on his death bed and "get into heaven" yet someone like me who has done nothing but good her whole life, but doesn't believe anymore, is "damned to hell" ? if there is a god i don't feel he would allow that to happen to either one of us.

Brandi - posted on 02/14/2011

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I think your roommate is crazy. I am a Christian. I do believe in the rapture, but I believe that as long as you live right, I am sure you know right from wrong, and treat people nicely, and believe in a Heaven and Hell, that you are saved.
That is what I believe anyway.

[deleted account]

To Juleah you are awesome I haven't laughed so hard in ages. Not being disrespectful but it's just you have a very funny and objective view and this is a great topic. I'm not getting into the religious side of things here I mean your guess is as good as mine the main thing is you have faith in whatever you believe in. Man some of these posts were hilarious you ladies rock!

Cyndel - posted on 02/14/2011

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First of all, most Christians in no way believe like this. It is unbiblical and a false prison. Jesus isn't a cruel God who requires you to constantly think on him to make the 'rapture'. Honestly I don't think it is any day now that Christ is coming back, honestly I'll be surprised if it happens before I'm a very old woman, if then more then likely it will be in my grandkids or great-grandkids time. There is still so much to be done before that time.

Now to answer the questions in your last paragraph:
Jesus does so because of humanity's innate sinfulness. We must repent and turn from sin accepting the gift of salvation Jesus gives removing our sin completely and replacing it with his cloak of righteousness, to go to heaven to be in the presence of the Father.
To be honest, would heaven be heaven if there were unrepentant rapist allowed in who had no interest in changing his ways, or a pedophile, or a murderer, or even a bully who just wants to make you miserable? God wouldn't be a loving Father to his children if he allowed people into heaven who hated him and only wanted to harm his children.
Would you allow someone to live in your home who every day went out of their way to hurt you and your children?
There is a choice, repent, turn away from sin, accept the perfect love of Christ, and live the rest of your days giving glory in everything to Christ...or live without him for
eternity in hell.

Jenn - posted on 02/14/2011

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God isn't petty at all - it is man that is. Men are the ones who wrote the Bible. Men are the ones who like to argue over what is right and what is wrong. Men are the ones who interpret things the way that suit their own needs. I personally just feel like if you do believe and try to be the best person that you can be, then that is what God wants. I'm pretty sure God doesn't care how you interpret the Bible, nor does he care if you believe in rapture or whatever else.

Jenni - posted on 02/14/2011

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Ok ok. I was "challenging the interpretation of the Bible" but I'm not trying to single out Christians. So yeah.... moving on...

[deleted account]

Jennifer, it's really okay. I thought of most things you said as "challenging" which is funny that you say that wasn't your intention.

I went back and read and you said you were trying to understand arguments...which is a totally valid statement in a debate like this. People trying to understand and asking tough questions... I hope it was clear that I'm totally okay and not offended by that?

Like I said though, I've got to go...in like five minutes...lol!

Jenni - posted on 02/14/2011

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My intentions were not to disprove Christianity. After rereading my posts I think it was made pretty clear that I wasn't even challenging the validity of Christianity.

But feel free to point it out to me in PM because I'd really like to know where I was trying to disprove Christianity or poking fun of it.

I appologize if i did come across that way because it was not my intention.

[deleted account]

I don't know it seems pretty clear to me. Maybe I'm having an off day or something. Questions and challenges are people trying to understand or even disproof Christianity (or whatever the topic for debate is). Oddly enough, I'm okay with jokes typically. I just felt that some things that were said took it a little too far...especially when someone was asking serious questions. I'm going to go ahead and apologize for being sensitive. I know that my beliefs are unpopular and up for scrutinity.

And I won't be part of this debate any more today. I have to go get my MIL from the airport in New Orleans...a 4 hour round trip journey. Maybe I need to step out anyway. =)

[deleted account]

Sara, thanks for the clarification.

Jennifer, making fun is entirely different from challenging and questioning.

I'm sorry if I caused a diversion. Back to the debate. =)

[deleted account]

For a pretty easy way to understand TWO PEOPLE'S understanding of the book of Revelations in the Bible (the book that deals with the rapture) read the Left Behing series by Tim LaHaye and Jerry B. Jenkins. They are FICTION, but based on what 'may' happen after the rapture. (Oh, and the movies with Kirk Cameron are crap... the books are WAY more entertaining and easy to understand). They are a bit preachy, but it does take the scripture and make it a bit easier to understand in "real people language"

In the end, some Cristian denominations take the book of Revelations as gospel, and some denominations don't. Some think John ate a few too many magic mushrooms and had a tripped out dream (which he took as the word of God) and some think God did actually communicate to John what would happen.

Me? I personally believe that if I live my life in a good and unselfish manner, and I use my life to better the earth and the lives of others, then I'm good for the whole "afterlife" thing. :) But then again, I don't even believe in Hell, so...

And Kati - that person offering to take care of raptured people's dogs is kidding themselves - don't they know that the movie "All Dogs Go To Heaven" explained that all dogs are inherently innocent? Therefore, the dogs would be raptured too :D

Jenni - posted on 02/14/2011

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Sara, I hope you didn't take what I said as "making fun of Christianity" I'm more poking fun at or trying to understand why there is so much arguement among religions. The point I was trying to make to Juleah (with a little bit of humour) was it should be enough to believe in God and live your life according to what you believe God wants from you. God wouldn't want people arguing over what to believe about him.

Sara - posted on 02/14/2011

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It was off topic, so I deleted it Sara. I figure Juleah wants her questions answered and not an argument about something else.

[deleted account]

I'm not so sure about the fear of Hell. Never really something I've worried about. Maybe for some...if that's what is focused on at your particular church. Yes, I believe Hell is a real place, but I don't have fear of it. It's not why I chose to believe. I chose because of the love of God...it's totally indescribable.

By the way, I totally love how JuLeah asked a serious question to get some clarification and people come on here to make fun of Christianity. You want our respect (and from what I've seen on this particular forum, most Christians show utmost respect for those that are not), please respect us. I'm not talking to those that are challenging Christianity. That is totally appropriate and understandable on a debate board.

Jenn - posted on 02/14/2011

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OK - but Jesus dying for our sins, and the promise of eternal life is NOT the same thing as "rapture". So I stand by what I said that it is NOT clearly stated in the Bible. What you are referring to is that our souls will be saved - not that Jesus is going to come down to Earth from the Heavens to sweep us up to be with him, and that those non-believers will be damned to Hell. Those are 2 very different things.

Sara - posted on 02/14/2011

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There's a comet coming in 2014 that will pick you up and take you to Jesus if you shave your head, and in the case of men, cut off your balls. Come join me, we can all drink the magic koolaid and go together!

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