Is hell in the bible? What if I quit church? Didn't Jesus die on the
cross to save everyone? Do I have free will? Is God mad at the world? Where's God? I don't understand the Bible! Am I going to burn in hell if
I sin? Is there a heaven? My pastor says I have to be baptized. Where is my dead mother? Is
Satan real? Does God really care if I love Him? Is there a hell? Why
is there so much evil in the world? Isn't God in control?
Q: Paul has a lot of commandments
to “do this,” and not “do that,” lest we be “castaways.” We know that there
is universal salvation, but between that and the here and now, we have
Pauline commandments. For example, in Galatians 5:13 Paul says, “For,
brethren, ye have been called unto liberty; only use not liberty for an
occasion to the flesh.” In 5:16 of the same book, Paul says, “Walk in the
Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh.” In 5:19-21, Paul
lists seventeen things that we should definitely not do. If we walk in the
Spirit, the Spirit produces fruit (9 things) that are most desirable. And in
Galatians 5:24, Paul adds: “They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh
with the affections and lusts.” And people that do such bad things shall not
inherit the kingdom of God. (Gal 5:21). There is a lot of “don’t’ do” here.
My question is: How is this accomplished?
A: First, it is important to note that Paul gives
exhortations, not commandments. These are not “have to’s,” as was the case
with the Law of Moses; Pauline teaching is antithetical to the Law of Moses.
In other words, you will not lose your salvation if you don’t do what Paul
says. Why? Because your salvation is not in accord with works, lest anyone
should be boasting (Romans 3:27-28).
I am a spiritual seeker, just like you. I have sampled the religious
institutions of humans and found them unable to contain the greatness of God.
All my life, I have had deep questions about God and my relationship to Him: Why
am I here? Why is there so much evil in the world? Is the universe coming to an
end? What will happen to my unbelieving loved ones after they die? How important
is it to attend a church? I didn’t find answers in church. In fact, most of the
churches I attended or visited didn't even want to hear the questions. Read more...
HOW TO QUIT CHURCH WITHOUT QUITTING GOD Why Going to church today is
unbiblical, un-Christlike, and spiritually risky "Confronting
hypocrisy, contradiction, and cult overtones in modern-day Christianity
head-on, Zender raises serious criticisms without renouncing true faith. A
truly fascinating book." -Michael
J. Carson, The Midwest Book Review
Revised from original edition
"Zender's conversational writing style turns discus- sion about strict religious dogma into a fun-filled frolic.
Although vehemently spiritual, he is the Robin Williams of the roadside tent revival. -Dwight Greene,
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"The greatest tragedy in mankind's entire history may be the hijacking of
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