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Stats: 2,212,178 members, 4,829,694 topics. Date: Saturday, 23 March 2019 at 07:45 AM
|Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by TheArranger: 1:24am On Mar 14|
Two evangelicals came to my door and told me that if evolution were real, they would be able to evolve hats atop their heads on a hot day instead of needing to purchase them. Like bruh....
I was so amused that I decided to see what else they would say, and we ended up talking for a good 20 minutes, starting with a ground-level explanation of evolutionary theory. They didn't get more insane than the hat-evolution remark though. Just seemed like ignorant, deeply misled kids doing what they were told to do.
As the conversation moved forward, I started applying my values-based communications training to the encounter with the goal of making them like me, then whipped it all around on the fellas at the end of our chat by revealing that I'm an atheist. They were astonished and said they thought atheists were all self-centered, unkind people. Then I gave the younger one of the two men, who looked no older than like 21 or 22, a copy of "The God Delusion" and said I didn't expect him to read it until he had questions of his own that his theology could not answer. He thanked me, and the older man complimented me on my attitude toward people with differing views.
In all, it felt like I made a tiny bit of difference.
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|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by CAPSLOCKED: 7:20am On Mar 14|
GOOD ONE BROTHER.
WE SAVE THE SOULS THAT TRY TO SAVE US.
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|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 8:01am On Mar 14|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by IAmSabrina(f): 9:02am On Mar 14|
TheArranger:Lol. Good one
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Martinez39: 1:48pm On Mar 14|
"... if evolution were real, they would be able to evolve hats atop their heads on a hot day instead of needing to purchase them."
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 10:00pm On Mar 14|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by MuttleyLaff: 10:07pm On Mar 14|
TheArranger:"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it."
Ihedinobi3:Evangelicals somewhat or not, are Christians
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 8:06am On Mar 15|
MuttleyLaff:I know that. I was wondering why he identified those two specific individuals as evangelicals. I wouldn't be surprised if he met Mormons and called them evangelicals just because he wants to make a point against biblical Christianity.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by MuttleyLaff: 8:17am On Mar 15|
Ihedinobi3:and because it's just a colloquial he decided to use
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by OpenYourEyes1: 8:31am On Mar 15|
You did not tell us why the preachers analogy sound ridiculous to you.
He made a good point if you consider that most evolutionists often use adaptation which happens almost instantly to prove evolution..
Humans do change from fair skin to dark skin under the sun - this adaption.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by OpenYourEyes1: 8:53am On Mar 15|
According to darwin, complex creatures evolve from more simplistic ancestors naturally over time."
If the above is true, apes should be the most advanced life form after humans . Questions is why are apes not builders instead we have builders from "less advanced" life form like birds, termites, bees, squirrels, grasscutters, etc.
Learn to think for yourselves and stop relying on myths.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 12:32pm On Mar 15|
When I read where he gave the guys a copy of The God Delusion with the irony surrounding it this really cracked me up.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by IAmSabrina(f): 7:35pm On Mar 15|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by TVSA: 7:59pm On Mar 15|
I never liked the idea of evangelism even when I was still a believer. It has this arrogant tone, going to people's house to tell them your belief and proclaim judgement on them if they did not agree with you. The worst part was persuading people to follow you to church
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 8:42pm On Mar 15|
The irony that the "delusion" in question is a reflection staring back at its "owner" who tries to "give" it to someone else in the hope of curing them of their delusion.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 8:49pm On Mar 15|
Not speaking in defense of anything but I believe they seek your permission first before speaking to you about their belief which I know it lies in your power to decline. You make it sound like they foist their belief down the throat of anyone and everyone they approach which is rather unfair to them especially now you deem yourself no longer associated with their belief system.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 9:11pm On Mar 15|
Zither:Excuse my intrusion, but I thought to use the opportunity to point out a thing or two.
You have a point. I doubt that many evangelists foist their beliefs on anyone. The biblical position is really that the Gospel should only ever be offered to those who want it. So, it does make sense and is to be expected that good evangelists would not throw their faith in other people's faces. It is too precious, after all, to offer to people who have no sense of value for it. In fact, I believe that the gift of evangelist gives believers who possess it and are spiritually mature and tested for ministry a special ability to identify evangelical opportunities.
Personally, I have very little sense of evangelical opportunity. When I was much younger, I was not even aware of such a thing as evangelical opportunity. I'd just walk up to people and start berating them with what I thought they needed to hear. It was what we were taught we should do. As I grew up, I did it less and less. When I eventually began to learn the Bible seriously, I accepted completely for the first time that while, like every other believer, I am responsible to share the gospel with unbelievers willing to hear it, I am not by a long shot any kind of evangelist. It is very hard for me to even find a way in to speak to an unbeliever about the Lord, so I almost never do. My own gift is far more abrasive. If anyone comes to the Lord Jesus as a result of interacting with me, they would be really humble people because I am far more of a protector than a scout. I do lace everything I say with the Gospel but I don't really go out of my way to "preach to the lost".
Unfortunately, not many believers take the Bible seriously enough to know both how these things work or how to handle people like the OP.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by TVSA: 9:26pm On Mar 15|
I agree with you Zither. But when you give them a chance out of courtesy, then they pass their boundary. A guy kept coming back to my place just to lure me to his church. I later realised it was their church mandate to win certain number of souls per person to the kingdom.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by IAmSabrina(f): 9:26pm On Mar 15|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 10:28pm On Mar 15|
No intrusion committed. This, as every other thread in this section, is a discussion board so feel free to "intrude".
Your experience goes to show we learn. We make mistakes as Christians but we learn. It is God's gift of grace at work. No preacher, or evangelist should subject others to involuntary audience of their preaching in the sense of holding or detaining them at a spot till they are done preaching to them. This approach is infuriating and un-Christlike. Even Christ had to leave a city when the people of the city begged him to depart from there after news of his deliverance of a demon-possessed man had spread to the city.
If a person is not willing to listen to what one has to say about Christ then the wise reaponse is to let them be. They must be willing otherwise the preacher or the evangelist risks being adjudged a fanatic.
Truly, I commend your approach towards reaching out to the lost who are willing to hear. This should be our approach towards evangelism. Like you said, believers should be open to opportunities for evangelism, and not force their religious opinion on others.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 10:38pm On Mar 15|
True. They are known to do that. Just let them know you are uncomfortable with their persistent checking-up on you. That should solve it. Believe me, I know it could be quite inconvenient so I'm not in support of their action.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 11:10pm On Mar 15|
IAmSabrina, I am very familiar with this path. I know it might seem uncharacteristic but can we not argue for a change? Can we actually interact without recourse to verbal fisticuffs?
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by IAmSabrina(f): 11:45pm On Mar 15|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Martinez39: 11:55pm On Mar 15|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Martinez39: 11:56pm On Mar 15|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 6:36am On Mar 16|
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 6:39am On Mar 16|
Lolzz. I tell you. Wisdom is profitable to direct. I just don't have that desire for argument...ra ra. Aren't you tired of the incessant religious argument on this section? If you're not, I am hence the white flag I waved to IAmSabrina...
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 12:02pm On Mar 16|
Zither:I couldn't agree more.
In fact, our Lord never spoke to the crowds that gathered to Him without using parables. That was a tool through which He gave the Truth to those who might not truly want it. Because the Truth was "cloaked" or "hidden" in the folds of the true stories He told them, they couldn't be offended by it. But there was enough of it apparent to encourage those who truly wanted to know the Truth to come to Him and ask to be taught about it, just as His disciples did in fact.
The Truth is by nature an uncompromising, unyielding thing to encounter. It's like an implacable enemy for most people. And why not, considering that we are all God's enemies by nature and He is a far greater adversary than we have any hope of defeating. If we can pretend either that He is not there to be defeated or that we have managed to get Him to capitulate somehow, then we can carry on our lives here on earth with little concern. That is what the Bible calls "having (one's) conscience seared as with a hot iron" and being "blinded by the god of this world". It is the only way that anyone can persist in unbelief. If such an unbeliever were forced to listen to the Gospel, it would seriously disturb the illusions that he has so painstakingly woven around himself. Not only would it unsettle him, it would only cause him to fight harder to convince himself that his illusions are absolutely real and solid. And the only way that he knows how to do that is to attack the Truth or its messenger. In fact, as the example of Stephen (and our Lord Himself earlier even) shows, when the unbeliever sees how impenetrable and impregnable the Truth is, how uncompromising and unyielding, how absolutely adverse and implacable, he turns his sights on the messenger. This is how persecution and martyrdom happens. If we could get rid of all believers (whether by making them unbelievers like ourselves or by killing them), they imagine, we can actually decide what the Truth is for ourselves.
Of course, not all unbelievers head that way. Some do begin to take a more critical, objective look at the house of dreams they have built for themselves and ask if they might not truly be lies. This can happen at any point. Even an ardent persecutor and murderer of Christians can turn around. It is for these ones that sometimes Christians speak and act like Stephen and our Lord did at the end. But for the most part, I believe it is wiser to couch the Gospel in language that allows the hearer to completely ignore it if they please.
In apologetics, which is a ministry I am called to, sometimes the believer cannot avoid putting the Truth out with no parables. This is often because of the circumstances. Christian apologetics is not merely defense of the Faith - in fact, it is hardly that, in my opinion -, it is actually defense of fellow believers who are troubled by the lies of antagonists who are not content to stay in their unbelief but will rather raid Christian camps and try to pick off stragglers and harass the hordes, so to speak (think of the Amalekites: Deuteronomy 25:17-18). That is, these antagonists actively attack the Faith. This instantly brings such people into the zone of conflict and it is very hard indeed to avoid offending them with the Truth because of how close they bring themselves to it.
The result of such exercises is usually growing and festering antagonism toward all Christians with increasing desire to murder them. They are the fastest tools deployed once persecution begins. In fact, I am absolutely certain that this is what will happen from the midpoint of the Tribulation onward: the desire to remain in indifferent unbelief will be almost completely lost for the vast majority. Christians who will be content to just carry on with life without getting in anyone's face with the Gospel will still be sought out for all sorts of debates and arguments which, when ending inevitably in the Christian's favor, will only drive the antagonists to murderous madness. They would just be too pleased to haul off any believer they find then to the Beast's deputies who would only be too happy to imprison, torture, and kill them.
It's impossible to please such antagonists. You can't avoid them; you can't reason with them. Your death, which is twisted into a false concept of victory over the Truth, is the only thing that can give them any pleasure or joy at all.
I wish very deeply that believers will prepare themselves for such people. Even if these were not the waning days of the Church Age, they are always a threat. Believers who don't know the Bible are easily seduced or threatened by them into abandoning the Faith. Not every believer is gifted to be an apologist nor do they need to be. What matters is that the believer knows and understands the Truth of the Bible. That will always be sufficient to keep them spiritually safe from such people. But because there will always be Christians who are weak in understanding, there will always be mature believers gifted to protect them from the sophisticated lies that such antagonists weave to weaken Faith.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 2:07pm On Mar 16|
Ihedinobi3, you've made much sense in this post of yours. I am wowed.
When you linked aggressive opposition to the truth and Christian persecution by unbelievers with the unbelievers' need to defend their conviction of what is deemed "truth" to them I couldn't agree with you more. This calls to memory the book, Foxe's Book of Martyrs.
But for the most part, I believe it is wiser to couch the Gospel in language that allows the hearer to completely ignore it if they please.
This sums it up nicely.
However, to be fair to unbelievers, not all house murderous tendencies in their minds in order to defend their conviction from the age-long threat of being exposed as the falsity it is, but since you also associated this possibility with the prophesied Tribulation phase this is a certainty. After all history always repeats itself.
The most important thing, I would add, is for the believer to learn how to abide in Christ. While reaching out to the lost this will guarantee a means that is
sufficient to keep them spiritually safe from such people.
A remarkable exposition that underscores the theme of the irreconcilable difference between the notion of truth and its justification.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 4:05pm On Mar 16|
Zither:We're exactly of the same mind.
Regarding unbelievers, I did say,
"Of course, not all unbelievers head that way. Some do begin to take a more critical, objective look at the house of dreams they have built for themselves and ask if they might not truly be lies."
We were all unbelievers once, after all. Nobody was born a believer. That is a perspective worth hanging on to because once we lose it, we become unbearably arrogant.
In fact, during the Tribulation, not every unbeliever will throw in with Antichrist. Plenty enough of them will refuse to take his mark or join in the persecution of Christians. Not so plenty that it will make a difference though. In fact, such people will be comparatively very few indeed and possibly far between. It is possible to be an indifferent believer. The vast majority of unbelievers today are indifferent about spiritual matters. They don't care what the Truth is. They want to live life on their terms and worry about the consequences later, whenever that may be.
Unfortunately, however nice and non-threatening an unbeliever may be in their indifference, they are not friends to the Truth, so even after living under the perfect conditions of life in the Millennial Earth under the Rule of the Lord Jesus, they will rise up to try to overthrow Him. So, it will never be a good idea to expect much from an unbeliever. One may hope that some dear one may be saved because they are so nice, but unbelief is by definition implacable enmity against God. It is a refusal to give God His Due. The unbeliever accuses God of lying in one way or another even if they never admit such a thing. So, they are not people we should expect much from.
The most important thing to keep in mind about unbelievers, in my thinking, is that as long as they are alive, they may yet repent and believe... Or they may not. So, we ought not to treat them like they could never become part of our family or as though it is absolutely certain that they will be. This is another place where we must be gentle and harmless like doves and very shrewd like snakes.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Zither: 6:37pm On Mar 16|
On point. I am of the same opinion as well. One most important reason I don't want to engage in argument with them anymore is that the only job of the Christian is to tell them the message, that is, if they're willing to hear. The job of convicting them of their sins belongs to the Holy Spirit. Argument, as you know, has done nothing but fan the flame of their unbelief.
Come to think of it, if they won't listen to Jesus knocking on their hearts will they listen to us imploring them to open their hearts to Jesus? I doubt it much.
As regards the Millennial Reign after which is the Armageddon, the unbelievers will wage war against Christ and His Redeemed because they would have come to terms with their fate as any unbeliever who is alive at that time must definitely have taken the mark of the Beast OR worshipped his image so they acknowledge that their condemnation is certain even if they get to taste a very very little of paradise on earth. This informs why they will readily take up arms against the King of kings and His people after the devil has been released from his 1000 years of torment in the Bottomless Pit.
The fact that they cannot all be saved is a truism. Only we pray that many be saved so they can be snatched from the fire. The believers too should tread very carefully when reaching out to them so that their actions do not result in the unbelievers drifting further away from Christ, neither should they let their guards down so that they are drawn into the perdition of the lost and be disqualified from the race.
|Re: Lol. I Can't Even, You Guys.... by Ihedinobi3: 7:54pm On Mar 16|
Zither:I agree for the most part. Proverbs 26:4-5 is actually what led me to accept my gift in apologetics. Before I got to understand what the Faith is about, I skirmished enough times with antichristians to develop an antagonistic attitude toward them, which was unhealthy. Today, I am at peace with the gift and exercise it as often as I have the opportunity to. The reason, as I said before, is not to convert any unbeliever. That is the job of evangelists. An evangelist with a gift for apologetics would be very different from me. I am a pastor-teacher by gifting, and apologetics is only one way the gift manifests itself. It operates to protect fellow believers, not to convert unbelievers. Many believers are attacked by the lies that unscrupulous antichrists tell. So, I challenge the lies and expose them as lies for believers willing to benefit from my gift. That is what all the debating is about. As I said, everyone has their own gift and everyone should operate within their gift. But the differences in operation should not lead anyone to condemn one in favor of the other.
As for the Millennium, it appears that your understanding of this differs from mine. Armageddon actually occurs before the thousand years of our Lord's Reign. It happens at the end of the seven-year Tribulation when the Antichrist gathers all the armies of the world to level Israel and exterminate the Jews once and for all. They will be fighting at the final stronghold in the Third Temple when the Lord Jesus returns and wipes out all the armies gathered there. The Beast and his prophet will be thrown into the Lake of Fire then too. Following that, the Lord Jesus Himself will regather all Israel from all over the world and screen them into the Land. This will be the first time that Israel will occupy the full territory that God promised to their fathers.
Then, the Lord Jesus will raise the Temple Mount so that it is the highest mountain on earth and He will enlarge and beautify the Tribulational Temple as His Earthly Palace. The description is in Ezekiel 40. From there, He will rule over the whole earth for a thousand years.
His government will be worldwide and all resurrected believers will participate in some way. Unresurrected believers, that is, those who believe in the Lord after He returns and are still in mortal flesh, will also participate in that thousand-year reign. There will be unbelievers too because free will will still exist for those still in mortal flesh. The earth at this time will be a paradise, a perfect place for human existence. Because of the continued existence of human beings in sinful flesh though, there will still be a justice system, a perfect one this time, that restrains the impulses of the sun nature so that everyone who wants to can enjoy to the full the perfection of a world perfectly ruled by the perfect Monarch.
At the Lord's Return, all those who had already believed in Him and continued to up to that point will be resurrected whether they are alive or dead. So, they will be immortal throughout the Millennial Reign. Satan and all his fellow rebels angels will be thrown into the Abyss at that same Return. That, in fact, is very likely what we who believe up to that time will do.
So, the uprising I spoke of is a different war from Armageddon. In fact, Armageddon was a war but it is likely that this uprising will not get far enough to become a war. Yes, it will result in persecution and harm for Millennial believers, that is, mortal believers, but when the hordes surround Jerusalem, the Lord will wipe them out with fire from Heaven.
After this, the whole creation will be destroyed, and the Lord will judge Millennial believers for their eternal rewards (like He did at the Second Advent for believers of the Church Age), then He will judge all unbelievers from Cain until the last one to die in that rebellion in order to demonstrate to them how deserving they are of their punishment. Then, all unbelievers will be thrown into the Lake of Fire with Satan and the other rebel angels.
After this Judgment of the Great White Throne, the Lord Jesus will create a new Universe in the blink of an eye, a perfect Cosmos with absolutely no stain of all the wickedness that happened in the Old one. Then, the Father will bring down the New Jerusalem (a massive city with beautiful forests of trees, wide boulevards and lodgings like nothing the architects of this world have a prayer at conceiving) to the New Earth (where there is now no sea, rather there are huge rivers filled with amazing marine life and perfect in every way) and all believers of the Church Age will take their lodgings in it with the Father and the Lord Jesus having their Throne in the middle of the City on the tallest mountain on that new earth too.
Millennial believers will populate the rest of the new earth and come to New Jerusalem to show off the amazing things they build and discover and whatnot in their nations. We will together with them and the Father and the Lord Jesus and the elect angels rule over the whole Universe without ever having to deal with sin or any of the troubles of this current creation. This is Eternity.
That is what we are told in the Bible. Eschatology is probably the most distorted doctrine of the Bible, with each teacher and each denomination coming up with all manner of madness that believers often have little idea how to judge. It doesn't help that Revelation is probably the worst translated book in the Bible and that even in manuscripts the copyists took too much liberty there as well. But we can learn the Truth, if we want. Eschatology is critical to our Faith because it describes the Joy of our Hope and what makes everything we must suffer now worth it. Our inheritance is amazing beyond words. In fact, we are not told everything about it in the Bible, but what we are told at all is mind-blowing, to put it mildly. The first time I learned it, it was all I wanted to read. The descriptions of New Jerusalem, the amazing rewards we earn for our faithfulness in following the Lord Jesus, seeing and being with God forever, being part of a huge eternal family comprising human beings and angels where everyone loves you perfectly and you are exactly the same way toward them, a vast cosmos very likely much bigger and more complex than this one filled with light and no darkness at all...I could go on.
Apart from the Person and the Work of the Lord Jesus, that is, that He is God Who put on real humanity and that He died spiritually to pay for our sins, the thing that Satan attacks more than anything else is our understanding of the Promised Inheritance of the Saints.
I should add that this is only to explain what I understand to be the biblical teaching, so we need not agree on it. I haven't put it forward in order to provoke a debate, just FYI. I would be equally happy to hear what you believe about it and agree to disagree if necessary.
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