“It’s Not a Religion, It’s a Relationship”

May 12, 2007

I hear those words uttered frequently from my fellow Christians….”It’s not a religion, it’s a relationship.”

I do believe that a relationship with Jesus is the most important things that we can experience, and the most important part of Christianity. That being said….I still have to argue with those who claim that Christianity is not a religion.  I do believe that it’s a relationship, but I believe that it’s a religion as well.

Religion is a belief (spirituality, some might say), and the practices associated with those beliefs.  God created us, and reveals Himself to us, so we do have that belief in Him. We also have practices associated with that belief, such as baptism, ministering, helping the poor, etc.

God basically created Judaism, giving priests instructions to teach the knowledge God gave them and the practices He commanded. Man might have changed it a bit, but God created it.

The Bible does seem to speak of true religion on a positive note….So I can’t help but disagree when people say that Christianity isn’t religion, or that we shouldn’t be “religious.”  Religion is belief and practices, and we shouldn’t forsake the belief in God, nor should we forsake the practices that He has commanded.

Are you in a rut?

May 6, 2007

Here are some words of encouragement….from someone else 🙂

“Smiley” Faces

March 13, 2007

Sometimes when I’m writing letters or notes….actual handwritten things, I get the urge to insert sidways smiley faces, like “:)” or “:P” or “:D” or “:-)” or “;)” or “;-)” or “^_^” or….well, you get the idea.

I guess drawing smileys, in and of itself, isn’t that bad….but the fact that I want to draw them sideways on a handwritten paper is, well….a sign that I’m on myspace to much : P < – – See?

Why I Don’t Believe in Eternal Torment

March 13, 2007

This is a post I made for another discussion forum, but I spent some time on it, so I’ll throw it on here.  This blog lists some of why I don’t believe in the mainstream concept of hell, aka eternal torment.

I definitely don’t believe there is a hell now, because the Bible says that the dead know nothing (Ecclesiastes 9:5).  If we went to heaven or hell when we died, Lazarus probably would have said something about it worth writing down (John 11:17, 43).

I believe that the dead are dead until they are resurrected.  The dead in Christ are resurrected first, then the rest (Revelation 20:4-6).  Notice it says the “second death” has no power over the people who are part of the first resurrection.  Again, as we see in Ecclesiastes 9:5, the dead know nothing.  That’s enough for me to be confident that the dead are destroyed, not kept alive in suffering.

More scripture supporting the destruction of the wicked includes:

Ezekiel 18:4, Ezekiel 26:21, Ezekiel 28:18-19, Malachi 4:1, Psalm 37:20, Psalm 104:35, Isaiah 47:14, Nahum 1:10

I believe that it’s important to remember that words like eternal and forever aren’t always literal, things can be lost in translation.  If I say “may the king live forever,” that’s not necessarily literal.

2 Peter 2:6 and Jude 1:7 might be compared…..the fire might be eternal, the punishment might be eternal, but the life isn’t eternal.  Sodom and Gomorrah are obviously no longer standing, right?

The promise of eternal life was promised to God’s people, to those who have righteousness, by faith.

Romans 2:7, Romans 6:23, 1 Corinthians 15:53-54, 1 Timothy 6:16, 2 Timothy 1:10, and…

John 3:16
16″For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

I believe that there are two kinds of people, those who will receive eternal life, and those who won’t.

I’ll try to wrap this up by showing that the lake of fire, which is called the second death(Revelation 20:14), is on earth(Revelation 20:14), and it seems earth is destroyed(Revelation 21:1).


I do admit that there are a few verses that are hard to understand, I see where people are coming from on each side, but this is what I believe.  The weight of evidence on the subject points to destruction, not eternal torment.  If anyone has any questions….ask.  I certainly haven’t covered it all in this one short blog, but I think the scripture speaks for itself.

I could probably expand on all this, but for now, I’m done. 

God Bless 🙂

Short Assessment of Operating System Users

March 13, 2007

Mac users tend to be the most over zealous, imo….even when they might not know what they’re talking about.  Windows users for the most part don’t seem to care too much, although there’s a few who are antiMac.  There are zealous linux users, there’s a lot of antiWindows linux users, but they at least seem to know a lot about what they’re talking about, for the most part.

Daylight Savings

March 13, 2007

I love the surreal feeling that comes with daylight savings…..I got out of my last class (at 7pm), and there was actually sunlight out!  Awesome…. 🙂

A Beautiful Day

March 12, 2007

Today was an beautiful day 🙂

I’m always astonished at how quickly winter passes.

Trust strangers

March 11, 2007

How much do you trust random people?

I was studying at the library at my school, downtown….huge library, when this guy who was studying near me walked over and asked me to watch his stuff while he used the bathroom.  I had no problem with that, and it didn’t seem that odd at the time, but then I realized….it is a bit odd.  I didn’t know that guy, at all.  It was probably pretty obvious that I was a student, though, and not one of the homeless guys walking around (which we plenty of,  on our lovely urban campus).

At my old school, if I was studying on the top floor the library, and I got thirsty, I would go to the bottom floor to get some white hot chocolate….leaving my stuff where it lay, on the top floor.  This isn’t my old school, though.

How much do you trust completely random people?  Is that something you would do?

I might write a real blog one of these days…. 🙂

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Metro

March 2, 2007

So I transferred from Mines to Metro, recently. Metro’s a nice school, but it’s certainly very different. One thing I noticed is that there are a ton of smokers here(I don’t know why that is, or why I thought it was interesting, but yeah). I think the classes are a little easier, but that could be because I’m taking easier classes. Another thing I noticed is that people here seem more disconnected(with the school). A lot of people here workfull time, I think. This girl I talked to yesterday said she was working 40 hours a week on top of taking 18 credit hours at metro…..that’s a buisy schedule.

On another note, John Edwards came to the school yesterday 😛

The Law

February 21, 2007

As a Seventh Day Adventist, I get asked about “the law” from time to time…people want to know why I keep some parts of the law (such the Sabbath, obviously), but not other parts (most mosaic law).  Most of the time it’s the Sabbath specifically they want to know about (or the dietary laws).

I can easily show that the Sabbath is blessed and Holy, which has nothing to do with the law.  I did, however, write a brief summary on “the law” for another discussion forum, so I’ll share that here.

Before I even start, I’ll point out, intuitively, that it makes sense that the Ten Commandments would be ten timeless principles, not nine timeless principles and one temporary standard. Each of the Ten Commandments are principles that we should live by, and would certainly be principles to live by even if the Ten Commandments were never given. They all existed even before they were given.

While the book of the law does contain moral principles, the letter of the law was done away with. The book of the law was given after the Ten Commandments wer given, because of transgression. The book of the law contains instructions for atoning sacrifices and stuff like that. This wouldn’t have been necessary if not for the stubbornness of Israel (and Man).

A brief summary of the history of the law:
God speaks the Ten Commandments to all Israel, for all to hear (Ex 20:1-17). The People ask Moses to be their go-between guy with God (Ex 20:18-19). God speaks to Moses the words of the covenant with Israel (Ex 20:22-23:33). Moses recites the covenant and its judgments to the people (Ex 24:3). Moses writes the book of the covenant, builds an altar, and confirms the covenant with sacrificial blood (Ex 24:4-8). Moses goes up the mountain for forty days and nights (Ex 24:12-18). God writes the Ten Commandments in stone, with His own finger, and gives them to Moses(Ex 31:18). Moses breaks the two tablets (Ex 32:19). God writes the second set of tablets with His own finger and gives them to Moses (Ex 34:1). The second set was the same as the first (Deut 10:1-4). –The Ten Commandments: Twice removedwas used as a quick reference for this timeline.

As we can see, the Commandments were treated differently from the start.  Obviously the Ten Commandments were special, spoken to all Israel by God, written on stone by His own hand, placed in the most holy place of the most Holy room in Israel (where as the book was placed beside, Ex 40:20). 

– > For those interested, the book “Ten Commandments: Twice Removed” discusses this in depth, going over tons of scripture showing the differences, how the Commandments are spoken of as glorious, while it’s known from the start that the book of the law is a witness against Israel(Deut 29:20-21 and much other scripture I might include later). The way I see it, the book contains the Holy Justice system, which Jesus fulfilled.

Let’s take a closer look at the book of the Law, shall we?
The book of the law contains several different types of Law, which I’m sure should be obvious. Firstly, there are moral laws, or moral principles. Laws such as….not sleeping with men, and other stuff like that. These things should be obvious. There are also ceremonial laws, which were added because of transgression, to atone for laws which have been broken, for sins which had been committed. Finally, since Israel was a very real nation (a theocracy, I believe), they obviously had civil laws….laws for governing the people of the government, determining government structure, punishment….just like the laws of the governments that exist today.

So yeah….There’s my view on “the Law,” some of why I believe that the Ten Commandments are special and timeless, as well as why I believe other parts of mosaic law should be kept(dietary laws, for example, are for our health, and taking care of our bodies is definitely a Biblical principle).  A good book for more info is The Ten Commandments:  Twice Removed, as well as the Holy Bible (obviously).

I hope to write a little more on the Sabbath in the future, giving further scriptural support, as well as write about a few other things.  I’ll try to blog at least once a week, if not more.

God Bless you all, and happy Wednesday 🙂