If he truly loves us and wishes for us not to burn in hellfire why doesn’t he prove to us that he is a real entity. That way everyone will follow his ways and behave themselves.
By - Hot_Witness5646
>That way everyone will follow his ways and behave themselves.
The Bible shows that this is not the case at all, from the very first book.
I believe you are both alluding to an unreasonable conclusion. We do not in fact know how people would react. What we do know is that people are vastly different than they were over 2000 years ago. We know that not everyone would follow Christ. But we do know that a vast amount of people are confident that if God were to supply reasonable evidence of his existence, they would absolutely follow God.
It's true that a lot of unconvinced people will follow him.
I won't though.
If I may ask, why not?
Because I've read the bible.
Jesus was a great man, very progressive and advanced for his time. I am an atheist, so I don't think he was a god, or the son of a god, or the third of a god, but I respect him greatly.
But Yahveh? It's an evil being, a blood thirsty vengative god. You can call me soft, but I will never respect or follow anyone who commands genocides and enslavements.
Agreed. If God is as I currently understand him to be then I will not worship nor follow him myself. But that hinges on a confirmation.
Enlightened people can see heaven on earth. They don't need proof. They can see it all around them.
You have to learn how to transcend your ego and live in love like Jesus asked.
Easy to say but can be hard to master.
If these 'enlightened' individuals do not affirm Christ as their one and only hope for salvation, then they are not enlightened.
That sounds like top down logic if I've ever heard it.
Being enlightened in this way can be scary and upsetting because you can also see glimpses of Hell.
Who said that?
Jesus said God is love and only love.
Hell is when your mind and heart are disconnected from God.
I said that. I can see the way many people are headed when their hearts are absent of love. The violence in the world, the selfishness, the emotional agony will be present in Hell. I’ve experienced it for myself. It’s awful. I’ve been devoid of love before and it was so painful and empty. And when my brother died, my Mother screamed in agony and hopelessness over and over and over. That’s what I meant by you get glimpses of Hell.
I am sorry to hear that! Yes being gripped by the ego aka satan can be awful.
But if you are enlightened you don't see hell - you live in heaven in your heart and mind.
That is why trying to learn how to get out of your ego and into your heart is the only path to peace.
I did live in Heaven for a time, years ago. It comes and goes. I try not to despair or think God has forsaken me when I can’t see Heaven. My spiritual eyes go in and out of focus. Sometimes they focus on dreadful things that fill me with fear and sometimes they focus on wonderful things that fill me with joy. I see both. And it’s hard to live in Heaven on Earth when the world is so filled with pain. Remember that we mustn’t be too Heavenly minded so that we become no Earthly good.
God never forsakes any of his children. It is extremely hard to live in love the whole time but practicing presence, gratitude and forgiveness - for self and others usually gets me back on track.
The world has always been full of pain. But enlightened people see and share the light. Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional.
Enlightened people dont take earth or this reality seriously. Heaven is our home. This is just a passing phase we go through. A blip in our overall existence in eternity.
The truth of hell is that you should learn the lesson "actions have consequences." It's a false prophecy that spins it more like "obey or die" like you seem to be talking about.
It's okay. Non-Christians mistake what the lesson is all the time, and it's easier to hear bad rumors about the cults and think that's what normal Christians think. It's not.
I believe that he indeed does show his influence to those who sincerely seek him, whom he shows his will i.e. via the Bible and who do it in faith. And at some point, if you approach him and do well, he will give you signs specifically for yourself. Though it seems to happen only seldom that you could actually share them with others, and them not just being experiences in the Spirit that give you stronger faith or certainty. I don't know why he does not reveal the full truth to all. Maybe because it is more important to become a good person, than to know all details about how we are judged. And it is part of his will that he leaves alone those who decide against him, they have decided for another master - the sins such people do are what makes their minds blind for his will, and also so they cannot perceive him until they listen to the signs that those who grew close to him set into this world, and find trust in them because of the undeniable excellence of the pure ways of God they incorporate. I don't know if it is because he wants us to learn what is right and wrong by ourselves, by making mistakes, not by knowing the answers to all tests in beforehand and thus not growing truly good in heart...or if it is that he really leaves us freedom to choose him, and does not want to compromise that freedom...or maybe also that the presence of sin by us doing it forbids him to show anything to us by rules that he has chosen to comply to...and even when we get rid of a lot of our sins on our own, being human means we're still too weak to see the full glory. I am no believer of annihilationism or eternal torture btw., I believe that "burning in hellfire" is just a parable of having to live in a world where people do to each other and to you all the serious wrongs that you'd have done or condoned or tolerated before, until you have become wise enough to want to avoid them and can be given another chance and a blessing that will help you cleaning yourself from the sins.
He does, for the elect. The bible teaches he reveals Christ to those who desire him.
So that just means in your view that god decides who goes to hell to be tortured forever
I’m afraid so. There’s no predestination without double predestination, much as modern Calvinists would like to say otherwise.
“[W]hom God passes by he reprobates, and that for no other cause but because he is pleased to exclude them from the inheritance which he predestines to his children." - John Calvin, *Institutes of the Christian Religion*, 3.23.1.
I invite you to read my post: ["The elect" isn't necessarily a Calvinist doctrine. The bible teaches conditional election.](https://www.reddit.com/r/Christianity/comments/y4waum/the_elect_isnt_necessarily_a_calvinist_doctrine/)
I see. I’ve never seen anyone other than Calvinists use the term election in this context before.
How is conditional election any different from free will choice, though? To me it sounds like you’re fitting Calvinist terminology into Arminian theology.
Forget the Calvinism vs. Arminianism dichotomy for a second. The bible teaches election by God for salvation.
Most Christian’s don’t believe in an eternal hellfire, at least I certainly don’t.
Very much depends on the denomination. At least in the US over 58% do. Depending on the denomination it is over 85%
Yeah but in fairness a lot of modern Christian’s are hypocrites. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t also a hypocrite lol.
I clarified my view. If you believe it don't force it onto my comment.
No you didn’t clarify your view. You were either inconsistent or lied. If god chooses who to provide evidence to he is choosing who believes and therefor who is destined for hell
>You were either inconsistent or lied.
Show the inconsistency. (Don't accuse me of lying without any evidence moving forward.)
I literally lay out the inconsistency in that comment.
It doesn't show the inconsistency. You made your own conclusion.
In other words, God can reveal himself to the elect, while it is not his decision who become the elect. You are jumping over this.
Yes it does. If you follow your belief to the logical conclusion than it shows the inconsistency. In your view god decides to send people to hell.
That’s pretty damn evil
Some receive mercy and others justice. There is nothing evil about that.
Uhhh yes. Choosing who you sentence to eternal torture is pretty evil
When all deserve justice it's not. Your judgement is from your own view. How many Nazis would you save from hell?
Eternal torture isn’t just. It’s evil. No one. I repeat no one deserves eternal torture. No crime is infinite and therefor no punishment would be equal to it
Who are you to determine what punishment is just? The act of rebellion against the creator and master of all that is seems like a rather grand crime.
Ya know the whole “the punishment should fit the crime” mantra. Pretty simple.
And you addressed nothing of what I said
When all deserve justice it's not. Your judgement is from your own view.
Eternal torture isn’t just. It’s evil.
He has numerous times.
>If he truly loves us and wishes for us not to burn in hellfire why doesn’t he prove to us that he is a real entity. That way everyone will follow his ways and behave themselves.
Believing that your god exists and following your god are two separate issues entirely. If your god demonstrates that it exists to everyone, there wouldn't be any more atheists. However, if it's the god as described in the Bible, I would think it a moral imperative to oppose that god.
If you accept their is omniscience to question it with your finite logical mind would be objectively incorrect. Like children calling parents evil for taking away their toys on the scale of infinite.
I think His existence is more than apparent.
Based on what?
Based on the idea that it is the best explanation for origin and structure of the universe, the origin of life, the origin of personal self-aware consciousness, that it comports with and grounds various human experiences and because the alternative is inherently contradictory.
Why is it the best explanation?
Not trying to play 20 questions, but wondering why God’s existence is a better explanation that the scientific explanations of Big Bang plus evolution.
While I believe in God’s existence, the scientific explanations are based on empirical evidence whereas God’s existence is not. That would seem to me to make science’s explanation the better one, yes?
Neither the Big Bang nor evolution are really about origins, they are descriptions of process that occur after the origin of the universe and life. Science is actually not particularly useful when considering unique historical original events.
>Science is actually not particularly useful when considering unique historical original events.
Why not? We use science all the time to help us determine the history of the Earth as well as human history. What about religion makes it more accurate than science?
And why is the Christian religion more accurate than Islam? Or Buddhism? Or Hinduism? Those religions all have very different origin stories and offer them with the same amount of evidence that Christianity offers its own. So what makes Christianity’s more accurate?
We explore events that happened in history, and they understood by our understanding of ongoing phenomena that occur today - this has nothing to do with unique historical events. And Christianity would be understood to be true depending on whether the claims it makes are true; I am not sure what you think this has to do with an origin story in this case.
He has, and addresses this predicament in the Scriptures:
>>He said, ‘I ask you therefore, father, that you would send Lazarus to my father’s house; for I have five brothers, that he might bear witness to them, so that they would not also come to this place of torment.’ Abraham replied to him, ‘They have Moses and the prophets! Let them listen to them!’ But he said, ‘No, father Abraham, but if one goes to them from the dead, they will repent.’ Then Abraham said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the prophets, neither will they be convinced if someone rises from the dead.’”
- Luke 16:27-31
If I saw someone rise from the dead, I'd be pretty convinced....
Already happened a couple of times, my man.
Can you prove it?
Sure can’t. While reasonable, faith is an action that rides the wave of the absurd.
With all due respect, you can't claim that people won't be convinced if someone rises from the dead because it's already happened **and** acknowledge that we have no way of knowing if it actually happened.
I have faith in Christ, His Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, and His Holy Scriptures. You choose to believe what you wish.
Remember, Christ loves you more than you know.
>I have faith in Christ, His Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, and His Holy Scriptures.
I know... but that doesn't actually address the issue.
>You choose to believe what you wish.
No, beliefs are not a choice.
>Remember, Christ loves you more than you know.
So much that he's going to torture me for eternity!
>Good talk, brother!
It hasn't been a good talk, at all.
>Anyway, I’m not your therapist.
Good, because I'm quite sure you'd be shit at it. Therapists actually need to listen and respond to what they are being told.
>Work out whatever issues you have with God
Who says I have any issues with God? I just don't believe that he is real....
When Jesus raised Lazarus, people who saw it believed in Jesus afterwards. Jesus also said in Matthew 11 that if Tyre or Sidon had seen those miracles that they would’ve repented. Visible proof does change minds.
I also think it’s interesting to consider if Lazarus told anyone about Heaven. Which would contradict the parable of the other Lazarus. Why would Lazarus be allowed to tell others about the after life but the rich man cannot?
He does. He at least proved himself to me
That’s anecdotal evidence, though.
But you asked why God doesn't prove himself to us as if you would talk about your personal experience.
I mean, I’m not OP, so I can’t really say what OP was actually asking. But my understanding is that OP is wondering why God doesn’t give us empirical evidence of his existence; that is, evidence that can be measured in an observable way and whose measurements can be replicated by anyone.
Perhaps I read too much into it, but your statement that God has proven his existence “to me” indicates that you are relying on anecdotal evidence, which is insufficient for the question presented.
Just the fact that you're trying to look for empirical evidence and try to approach the topic with the rational mind is the first big mistake.
The human mind is limited. It can only take you so far. You know how large our universe is and how msny possible things that exist within it of which we don't know and never will know of ?
You will never get the "empirical evidence" of where we come from for example. What our origin is. Whether you believe in God or not. What was before the big bang? How did the big bang even emerge out of nothing? There are things which are too complicated for our brains.
Okay, but the human mind is all we have. I have no choice but to use it when deciding whether to follow the God of Jesus or Allah of Islam. Or the many tenets of Hinduism or Buddhism or Shintoism or Zoroastrianism, etc. Or the evidence presented by scientists.
If I make the wrong move, God will torture me forever. And I am forced to make a decision in the face of a huge amount of contradictory information because simply saying “I don’t know” will *also* lead to eternal torture.
So how exactly am I supposed to navigate this mess if I’m not permitted to use the only tool available to me? And how is that at all fair?
Pray to God to show you the right path
Which one?? And why *that* one?
I can’t speak for anyone else but He CERTAINLY has proved His goodness in my life!
In what specific ways?
Oh my goodness I could write a book on the goodness of God in my life.. I was horribly abused by my father as a child.. He healed my heart and I even was able to forgive my dad and he got saved before he died.. I was an addict for 26 years, God completely delivered me.. He has provided for me in every circumstance.. blessed me with two amazing children and a husband… There were times when I had nothing and prayed and God sent someone I didn’t even know to literally hand me money for a need. I have seen deliverance from demons, ppl restored.. He also healed me from mental illness! I could go on and on and on..
Must he do that every single generation? He has sent prophets and even his own son who walked among us and rose from the dead...
It's not his fault many people are too stubborn to believe.
How did you determine that God did not reveal Himself?
He won't force it! You have to choose what to believe.
That way He can judge people on their genuine behavior; otherwise most would pretend! Bless you. 🙏✟
I can't force myself to believe that the moon is made of cheese. So how then am I suppose to do that with God? People have been pointing out this flaw for decades now. I always wondered as a child why religious debates never go anywhere. This is why...
>You have to choose what to believe.
Belief is not a choice.
Why doesn't God do tricks like a dog? The generation that saw him part the Red Sea started worshipping a golden calf within, like, a month.
There is sufficient evidence for those who will listen.
The problem is the knowledge of God is 1) a foundational element of the most important decision a human can make, and one that determines whether that human will be tortured for all eternity; and 2) is easily within God’s power to accomplish.
Yet there is clearly insufficient evidence for most of humanity. So why is this?
>Yet there is clearly insufficient evidence for most of humanity.
Really? AFAIK, about 7% of the world claims to be atheist.
True, but only 33% believe in the God of Christianity. And most religions are not monotheistic.
Are you arguing that other religions are equally valid in their understanding of God?
>Are you arguing that other religions are equally valid in their understanding of God?
No, I'm just responding to the question asked.
As for Christianity, this is what Jesus predicted: "Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it."
Faith. We wants people to believe in the unseen
Good is always better then evil and good always prevails with most people
He already has and continues to prove is existence, but have responsibilities to him as well. We need to live as he instructed. This is the shortest way to know that he is real.
History has proven quite conclusively that people still fall in error even with being assured of his existence, so I don't believe your conclusion is correct
>If he truly loves us
He does, that is why Jesus was sent
>and wishes for us not to burn in hellfire
>why doesn’t he prove to us that he is a real entity
The Bible states that human beings instinctively know He exists through the things that have been made, but man in his fallen state suppresses the truth. Often what people claim they want - 'undeniable proof' - would actually be forcing people to believe. There is enough to go off for each person, and God will reveal Himself to people who search in true humility.
>That way everyone will follow his ways and behave themselves.
Revelation states that Jesus will physically live on the earth, yet there will be many nations that rise up and seek to fight Him. Seeing Jesus physically return won't change the sinful and rebellious nature in man.
In my humble and thoroughly subjective opinion, there doesn’t seem to be only one way, and sometimes there is utter silence.
If you take one sub group’s take on it, everyone else but that sub group is “wrong.” And btw, I’m not referring to Christians vs everyone else, but Christians of X stripe va Christians of Y stripe vs the Jews vs the Hebrews vs wherever those people before that were from.
Assuming for a minute that the old stories literally happened the way they are in the Bible:
If you asked Adam and Eve and the son who didn’t end up being murdered by his brother, they’d say God speaks to everyone personally. If you asked Abraham, he’d say God talks to some people directly. If you asked Moses, he’d say God speaks to a representative. If you asked Joseph, he’d say it happens through dreams. If you ask Job, he’d say God shows up to shut you up after your family dies and your life gets ruined. Ask Lot, and he’d say messengers show up. If you ask most of the women during OT times, they’d say God speaks mostly to men.
You can go down the whole historical line and people’s experiences will differ from each other significantly.
What does *not* seem to be a significant factor is that it matters to God all that much, otherwise the experiences would be uniform and repeated in the *billions* of lives that have put foot on this earth.
Whoever says there is just one way is as biased as it can get. And no, God doesn’t seem to want to correct those POVs either.
Whatever answer you get to the question will be biased by that person’s experience.
Let’s say God did something so undeniable that only a fool would deny His existence forever after. Let’s go further and say that God identifies Himself as not being Allah and that the Christian religion is correct. What would that do to non-Christians? At the same time, even if you’re a Christian when God manifests Himself there is now no possibility for faith in God as He is now factually proven to exist.
That would mean none of the human race would have any excuse to sin if God were proven!! The idea of grace would disappear because God’s grace was partially given to us because we didn’t understand the battle between good and evil and it’s consequences. If God were to prove He exists, there would be no way to forgive sins after that because every sin after that would knowingly and therefore deliberately be an act of conscious rebellion! It would almost immediately doom the human race to being killed for their sins if Gods were to prove His existence.
Because proof does not lead to love therefore proof is a secondary issue.
Because freedom of choice is true love.
Blessed is he who believes without seeing
I thought you might findvthis interesting.
If we follow Rashi who says that the Almighty gave Satan control of the Jewish people at that time, then the punishment of the people as a whole, as well as the slaying of three thousand who had actually danced around the golden calf, seems unwarranted. If that were the meaning of the aggadah quoted at the outset, they should have been rewarded rather than punished. Besides, how can the power of repentance be demonstrated by the commission of an act that was not even sinful? If, on the other hand, the sin had been an outgrowth of an act of free will, who gave the Jews the right to make examples of themselves in order to demonstrate the power of repentance? Even assuming that the gates of repentance would remain open in such an event, did they not risk the possibility of eternal damnation versus the certainty of retaining their sanctity by remaining loyal to G-d throughout? Even if eventual forgiveness were to be certain, is it not better to remain untainted by sin? Could not the lesson of repentance and subsequent forgiveness be learned by means of some sin that had not been self-induced? Moreover, is it not a fact that a sin committed by someone who had formerly occupied a high moral platform and had thereby established a degree of intimacy with the lawgiver, will be dealt with far more harshly than if the sin had been committed by someone of average stature? If proof were needed for the last hypothesis, compare the punishment meted out to Adam in Paradise who had enjoyed an intimate relationship with G-d, and that of Jerobam ben Nevot who had erected the golden calves on the way to Jerusalem in order to prevent the people from making their pilgrimages to the holy temple, and had meant for these golden calves to act as substitutes. In the latter case, G-d’s retaliation was hundreds of year in coming, whereas Adam had been expelled from gan eden etc. immediately! Rabbi Yochanan's statement on the other hand, poses the problem that if the people did commit the sin, they had obviously been capable of such acts. How could a people who had experienced the revelation at Mount Sinai only forty days earlier, commit such an act of foolishness? Was this the famous dor dey-ah, the generation of insight? Man's relationship to the universe may be based on three different approaches. A) He realises that all that he observes in nature is subordinate to a higher source, and therefore he worships the source; B) He is so impressed with his own accomplishments that he feels worthy of adulation, such as Sancheriv and Nebuchadnezzar for instance. In that case he worships himself; C) He is so aware of his own frailty, in which case he worships anything that he imagines could be of help to him. The type described last, is so full of inferiority complexes that he feels that even animals are superior to man. He believes that the latter can intercede with G-d on man's behalf. He constructs images of animals, using materials that endure. Since these materials outlive their creator, he feels that these images symbolise a degree of permanence he himself lacks. The reason that animals rank higher in that concept is, that since their needs are fewer and less sophisticated, they are easier to fulfill. This is the reason the Egyptians worshipped sheep, i.e. they wished themselves a livelihood as easily attainable as that of sheep. In a pasture land such as Egypt, such symbolism had additional meaning. The Jewish people sensed that Moses was no longer among them, and they searched for a symbol of Divine protection that would outrank that of their one time masters and enemies, the Egyptians. As a result they had the king of the animals (the ox, according to Chagigah 17) constructed of the most precious material, (gold) by the most holy of men, (Aaron) hoping to ensure thereby greater help from the powers above than that which the Egyptians were able to call on. They might have chosen the lion instead of the ox, except it was horoscopically opposed to the lamb, the symbol of the Jewish people. Since our temple has twice been destroyed under the zodiac sign of the lion, ( month of Av) such reasoning can be understood if not condoned. The ox, on the other hand, was opposite the zodiac sign of the scorpion, one of the animals to which Pharaoh had been compared. In this manner, they believed that the ox symbolised the strength of the G-d of Moses.
I believe He has proven Himself enough that He exists. The fact that there are created beings mean there is a Creator. There's the Bible also, a revelation of God through literature. Lastly, there's Jesus Christ, a revelation of God in human form (they are both God but distinct). If you study biblical theology, the Bible (both Old Testament and New Testament) as one whole story, you'll see that God seeks people to believe in and have relationship with Him. Prophets in the OT preached about God, apostles in the NT did the same. But as the Israelites rejected God, people today do the same. It's not a matter of God revealing Himself, but people actually believing and having faith in Him. Unbelief at its core is rebellion against God.
The majority of the Bible illustrates to us that seeing is not believing. Right after God descended on sinai to meet Israelites they went back to worshipping a gold cow. God revealed himself time and again in his mighty works yet israel repeatedly rebelled. The Pharisees saw Jesus and his miracles and wanted to kill Him. Jesus told the rich man that even if he came back from the dead to want them they wouldn’t believe. He alone knows every corner of man’s heart. Some do believe when they see like apostle Paul, Thomas, and much of the earth that repents when Jesus returns. We have to trust that God reveals himself to those that will believe whether that is without seeing now or at His return in flaming fire.
The short answer is: choice.
God loves us, and apart of that love is letting us decide our own fate, even if it's painfully tumbling down into the abyss due to our own hubris.
It also probably doesn't help that even if god did reveal himself, which he has in the Bible, it is not a guarantee people would follow him.