Tag Archives: holiness

What in the Hell?

fires of hell?

Scot McKnight has an intriguing post regarding Sharon Baker’s book Razing Hell: Rethinking Everything You’ve Been Taught About God’s Wrath and Judgment. His article here.

After you read these 7 considerations (from Scot’s post), will you please comment here?

1. Theodicy: how does God deal with evil if it, in effect, exists for ever in a hell-state? Does evil not continue to exist, even in spite of the statement in Revelation 21:1-4 that death and suffering will be no more? So, the issue here is squaring God’s goodness with eternal evil.

2. Eternal hopelessness: a traditional hell does not permit any hope after death for anyone, including those who have never heard. Is there a law that says God’s grace can only be active in the temporal sphere — that is, during our physical lifetime?

3. Eternal evil: does not the traditional view entail the view that God never really does purge his world of evil?

4. Justice vs. Love: the issue here is an old one. If God is love, how does justice fit in with that love. Is God ambivalent or split? An image of God that emerges for many is a cruel father who guides people to think of eternal punishment as an act of love.

5. Eternal divine violence: assumptions are that punishment is an act of violence and eternal punishment would mean God is eternally violent. She connects this view of God with acts of violence in history. She thinks God’s violence contradicts God’s love.

6. Retributive justice: again, a major issue is that God’s justice in the Bible — in Christ — is restorative but hell is a belief in a retributive justice that never becomes restorative.

7. Eternal punishment for temporal sin: how can it be just to punish a human being, who sinned temporally — that is over a life time (and no more), for an eternity for that temporal sin?

Shadowlands: This Real Life illustration pictures ‘Divine Love’

old spice guy

Old Spice gives us a great take on manliness; über coup for Isaiah Mustafa today!

Is God manly?

We live in the shadowlands. The goodness and love we find is a shadow of perfection, of the Eternal Mind. God, the Divine. The source of pure love and goodness, or mercy and grace.

God is not the father you had, God is the Father (or mother) you wish you had, and still need.

At the moment, I don’t think it can be better shown than in this clip of precious love that sees us through. (Olympian, Derek Redmond and his dad. It’s great stuff.)
Friends, let us love each other this way.

Our First Learning Group is finished.

Here are a few quotes from participants:

“All in all, one of the major things I gleaned from Brother Lawrence, was the similarity of my struggle to his battle, to get past punishing myself  for my failures and losing my focus on God. It seems that when BL finally internalized the concept of God’s grace, he realized that as soon as he saw the disconnect in his life it was foolish to waste time beating himself over it (asceticism, which could take that quite literally, especially in BL’s day!). He learned to immediately return to the position that was already his because of God’s grace, continuing in the joy of His presence.”

“I’m glad Brother Lawrence seems like such a regular guy. He prays things like “God, I can’t do this unless you help me,” and when he messes up, “God, I *always* do that, and if you don’t help me I won’t ever do better!” That I can relate to!”

“I loved that Brother Lawrence was his own man – it was just him and God becuase everyone elses ideas confused him, so he just went straight to God. It was nothing in between – he would just get up – own the difficulty and carry on!!”

“For me, Brother Lawrence broke down some of my pre-assumed barriers by helping to break the secular and sacred divide that has happened in my life. I have often thought… okay, now it’s prayer time, then work time, then church time, then social time… etc. In reality, those separations don’t exist, and it’s immensely helpful to integrate our whole lives.”

Learning exchange invitation to YOU!

Brother Lawrence
Brother Lawrence-Practicing the Presence of God

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