What life should a Christian live to be Christian?

(GJDS) #121

Universalism is still debated within Christianity to this day, and a recent discussion I came across suggested ‘hopeful universalism’ as perhaps a modification of Calvinism and the elect.

(Mitchell W McKain) #122

By “all the time”, I don’t think he meant always or that everything we say wrong, but more like we say something wrong in every speech or paragraph. For example, if I say one of my employees makes mistakes all the time, I don’t mean that every single thing they do is mistake.

(Mervin Bitikofer) #123

Thanks for the … uhhh … clarification, Mitchell. I probably should have loaded it down with a bunch more emojis to clue in all the literalists out there that this is my geeky attempt at humor.

(Mervin Bitikofer) #124

Here is another antidote to keep around to our whole “privatized religion” persuasions that are so popular in our western culture today. It’s a recent interview of Bishop Barron. Prepare to be smiled at if you view it [you’ll see what I mean]. But as always, the good Catholic Bishop has a lot of interesting and good things to say. Start about 4 minutes in if you’re the impatient type and want to skip past all the initial banter.

(Mitchell W McKain) #125

I am sorry… but that particular attempt at humor ranks right down there with puns at the bottom of the barrel. I simply assumed that your attempts at humor would little more elevated than that. :grin:

But perhaps I should also have realized that being confused about what he meant wasn’t so likely either. Does my choice of which I went with say more about me after all? Sometimes I do think there is a little bit of Bones (Dr. Brennan) in me.

(Shaun) #126

I am very humble before the truth and God, but not humble before another follower. If someone shares his thoughts, I always appreciate either I agree or not. That’s the level of my humility.

(Shawn T Murphy) #127

I guess you do not understand humility. A Christ-like response to something that you do not agree with is to remain silent.

(Shaun) #128

Then I am very Christ-like. I have done a lot like that. Sometimes I even think it’s not polite to keep silent when someone is expressing his opinion.

And I don’t think it makes a person not humble if he merely expresses his opinion. If he tells people what’s right and wrong, what they should do, then he’s not humble.

(Richard Wright) #129

Hello Mitchell,

For one, I never called anyone a heretic, only that certain statements made were, at least in my mind, heretical. That was that we can’t glorify God. We can and are called to, which is crystal-clear in scripture and I used many passages to show this. In fact, our purpose is to glorify God. What Mitchell has done is to respond with, "God doesn’t need to be glorified, that we can’t add to his glory, and now that we weren’t created to glorify God. But I never said those things. I said that it is heretical to say that we can’t glorify God.

This is interesting coming from someone who doesn’t believe that there is unauthentic Christianity. In any case, I just try to glorify God in whatever I do, deliberately, every day. I see that as my purpose in life. Whether that can add to God’s glory or not is a theological question.

Ceasing to do evil, which is repenting, and helping those in need are part of the life of the Christian life, so I’m definitely for them. However, I don’t think we’re are called to go out and, “seek justice and correct oppression”, whatever that means. We have a higher calling now, to imitate Christ. We may in some way mitigate against injustice and oppression as a consequence to imitating Christ, but we aren’t called to go out and do those things.

I’d have to agree with Mervin that this thread has started to devolve. No, I’m not a Mormon and I wasn’t trying to pick a fight, I was just wondering what your views based on what you posted. But let’s end this particular debate since it’s not relevant to what we’ve been discussing.


Though we agree on some particulars, it seems we disagree on what a Christian is. You’ve stated that we shouldn’t try to please and/or glorify God, yet these are fundamental to the faith:

"In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven." (Matthew 5:16)

Jesus commands us to glorify the Father.

“I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord.


Hello Shaun

I’m not sure what you’re saying here. Jesus said, “to him who has been given much, much is expected”. (Luke 12:48). Paul says in 1 Corinthians God has distributed different gifts. We have different talents, situations, backgrounds, and are at different stations in life. We therefore have different roles and expectations, but we are all called to imitate Christ as his followers. Is that what you were trying to say? If not, please explain more fully. Thanks!

(Christy Hemphill) #130

No, this is a discussion forum where the whole point is for people to bring up their disagreements, not remain silent. Sure, some people can be un-Christ-like in the way they express their disagreement, but silence is not the only option.

(Shawn T Murphy) #131

This is like I love Quora. People ask questions and many people answer those questions. The person who initially asked the question has knocked on the door, and they have to use their free will and intellect to choose the answer that is logical to them. This forum gets off on tangents too often and it hard to find a coherent answer to the original question.

(Mitchell W McKain) #132

Incorrect. To say that you should look elsewhere when people talk about authentic Christianity is not the same as saying there is no such thing is unauthentic Christianity. Christianity is a wide spectrum but it is a religion which can be distinguished from other religions by the beliefs agreed upon in Nicea 325AD. However people who talk about “authentic Christianity” are invariably trying to chop Christianity down to their small provincial section of it. Just because it falls within the definition of Christianity doesn’t mean that it is good. And the fact they are pushing such narrow bounds should be viewed with considerable suspicion because there is considerable danger that they are using Christianity for the purpose of power and manipulation. And I have already explained why this obsession with glory is also suspicious. Jesus is the best lens through which God, the Bible, and Christianity should be understood. And we see no interest by Jesus in His own glory – quite the contrary. Instead His view is that real greatness is found in being the servant of a servant. Maybe it is the translation of word and if the word “glory” didn’t seem so opposite of the idea of being a servant of servants then my objections would disappear.

Right and this is another source of suspicion on my part that the above is really about your own glory.

Isaiha chapter one makes it quite clear that God’s message to religious people is that He is rather sick of their religiosity and would really rather they “cease to do evil, learn to do good, seek justice, correct oppression, defend the fatherless, plead for the widow.”

And this is how you know that those like the Pharisees are more about looking good (seeking their own glory), because they would really rather bend justice to their own benefit and use oppression themselves to crucify those of God, like Jesus, who make them look bad.

Incorrect. I not only haven’t stated any such thing, but explained that I do such things as sing to glory of God myself. I am just rather suspicious when this becomes the focus of a person’s Christianity. That seems a little off to me.

(Christy Hemphill) #133

I guess that’s the difference between a discussion forum and a question/answer site.

(Jay Johnson) #134

Yes. And I always tell the truth … except when I lie.

(Robin) #135

What do you mean by “multiple lifetimes and fate through which all debts are paid”??

And what happens to the Prodigal Son who does not want to return home??? That happens too…And whatever happened to John 3:3??

(Robin) #136

I appreciate your thoughts…maybe even think cinnamon buns are great — but unhealthy and too fattening…and yes, withholding truth could be deadly, depending on the situation…in the case of biblical issues, sometimes the consequences are eternal …Worse, then, than too many cinnamon rolls!!

(Shawn T Murphy) #137

The answers to these questions are in the early Christian theory called the Apocatastasis or the restoration of all thing. In John 3 Jesus tells Nicodemus that he must be born again in a new lifetime, then he would be able to reach the Kingdom of God. This passage has been misinterpreted since the 6th century, and today the born-again Christians think that they can become perfect (Matt 5:44) in one lifetime, but it takes much longer to purify the soul.

(Shaun) #138

Hi Richard,

I totally agree!

But what is Christ-like? What exactly we should do to imitate Christ?
If you ask 100 Christians, you may get quite a few different answers. Then do we need an authority to decide what is “orthodox” and what is heretic? And, if we let the Bible decide, did the authors describe Christ’s life fully and accurately?
I guess your answer is yes.

One more question. Christians are required to take care of other people’s life, but should they also take care of their own life, and how? That important question has not been discussed enough.

(Robin) #139

So we are back to Origen, again, Shawm?? I can see why he was and is controversial, though important in other ways. But this does not at all address the issues and questions raised in my earlier remarks, or even the question abput the determined prodigal above. And in John 3:3. where do you see Jesus’ referencing being born again in a new lifetime?

Stick to the original discussion, please. And go light on the cinnamon rolls. You are not getting any younger.

(Shawn T Murphy) #140

I am on the original discussion as to what it means to Christian. Origen is still recognized as one of the greatest Christian Church Fathers. I asked you to reconcile the three tenets of Jesus’ teaching to explain that as Christian, we should love everyone equally and think about how Jesus will fulfill His promise that none will be lost and that even the prodigal son will eventually come.

You asked about John 3:3. Please read the whole chapter, specifically 3:3-5.

Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. Nicodemus saith unto him, How can a man be born when he is old? can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb, and be born? Jesus answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.

“Enter the womb a second time” sounds like reincarnation to me.