Easter Island

Easter Island

Reading Time: 5 minutes

Above Image by SoniaJane from Pixabay

Most of us have seen the pictures of the Easter Island stone heads and wonder who and why a civilization would have created such statues. Easter Island is found off the coast of South America, specifically the Chilean coast. Easter Island is one of the most remote locations on earth. Yes, even more remote than the North or South Poles. One would have to travel nearly 2000 miles to find another human settlement or neighbor to borrow a cup of sugar. If not for the island heads, Easter Island would be just another Pacific island among the thousands that dot the Pacific landscape.

Archaeological evidence suggests that the island was inhabited in the 1300s by Polynesians who, for reasons unknown, created these massive heads at over 250 locations across the island. Evidence also tells us that the island was originally heavily forested. In the 1700s, Europeans discovered Easter Island with some 3000 Polynesian islanders, but the forests had disappeared.

In modern years, scientists had concluded that the Easter Island Polynesian culture had decimated the forests in an effort to move/roll the gigantic heads to their current locations scattered across the island.

As to why this extinct and ancient civilization built these monoliths, we may never know, but researchers have found large quantities of red paint/dye around their bases, suggesting they were painted. Other evidence indicates the island culture had ceremonies associated with the Easter Island heads.

All this I found interesting, but what has surprised me, and caused me to write this particular post, was the very recent discovery that the Easter Island Heads, were not just heads, but they had bodies attached.

I remember as a young boy seeing pictures of the Easter Island Heads in National Geographic and wondered who made them, and why they would make them. Then, nearly 50 years later, I discovered there was a whole lot more than just the heads. Some of these statutes are 40 feet tall and over 75 tons in weight.

I wonder how many of us will be shocked to find there is a whole lot more to God than just the generic, sterile, relatively uninvolved being that so many nod to, like an acquaintance across the room, but don’t give him much more thought.

No doubt many have devoted their lives to him. Life-long sacrificial service is their vocation, and they gladly give all they have to those in need. Mother Teresa comes to mind, but I am sure there are countless others who remain nameless except to those they have served, and to God.

How many declare, God must be a powerful being but conclude, due to the condition of our world, He must have limits? How could an all-powerful God allow the evil that takes place in the world today? If a God is omnipotent, he must be powerful enough to stop evil. The problem of evil is one that many Christians struggle with and don’t have an answer to.

Why would God allow the millions to be slaughtered in wars that took place in the 20th century? Why would God allow millions of children to starve in Africa and Asia? Why would God allow the abuse of innocent women sold into prostitution? Why would God allow…?

If we look at the big picture and ask the question of why would God allow, then we must look at the small picture and ask the same. Greg Koukl put it this way in his book Faith Is Not Wishing, “The answer to the question ‘Why doesn’t God stop the evil?’ is the same answer to the question, ‘Why doesn’t God stop me every time I do wrong?’ There is a virtuous quality to human moral choice that both dignifies us and makes serious evil possible.”1

We can’t expect God to stop the suffering caused by evil in this world unless we expect him to do the same for us on a very personal level. He would have to stop us from lying, cheating, coveting, stealing, blaspheming, and a host of other actions on every level of our lives. Why do some cry foul when someone lies about them and damages their character when just the other day they were gossiping themselves? Why do some point the finger at those who commit adultery, yet they have those thoughts daily? Divorce, debt from greed and selfishness, physical and verbal abuse, and murder can be found everywhere, but only when people are affected in a way that they don’t like, do they want God to stop it.

If people were honest, they would admit that their freedom of choice, to do as they please, is paramount in their lives. Too many believers have what Dinesh D’Souza calls, cafeteria Christianity. These believers go through life attending church when they feel the need. Pray to God when they have a need. Quote scripture (more often misquote scripture) when it supports their need. “Spare the rod, spoil the child.” “God helps those who help themselves.” “Money is the root of all evil.” “Cleanliness is next to godliness.”((Craig, William L. Hard Questions Real Answers. Wheaton: Crossway, 2003. Print.)) These sayings and many more dot our culture and may imply the existence of God, but in reality, they are used to support their choices just as they use their God to support their beliefs, decisions, and opinions.

William Lane Craig wrote, “…the chief purpose of life is not happiness, but the knowledge of God. One reason that the problem of evil seems so intractable is that people tend naturally to assume that if God exists, then His purpose for human life is happiness in this life. God’s role is to provide a comfortable environment for His human pets. But on the Christian view, this is false. We are not God’s pets, and the goal of human life is not happiness per se but the knowledge of God – which, in the end, will bring true and everlasting human fulfillment. Many evils occur in life which may be utterly pointless with respect to the goal of producing human happiness; but they may not be pointless with respect to producing a deeper knowledge of God.”2

When we contemplate the universe beyond our solar system, beyond our own Milky Way Galaxy, which holds hundreds of millions of stars, and the hundreds of millions of other galaxies, which is expanding and accelerating, we get a glimpse of God beyond the figurehead. However, when we consider the other scale of our existence and peer into the tiny details of atoms, electrons, protons, and gluons, which exist less than a billionth of a second, we can only shake our heads in awe and wonder at what God has created. Hugh Ross wrote, “Personal observation over the past few decades tells me that the greatest earthly fulfillment humans experience comes from serving and pleasing God.”3

Romans 1:20 says, “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” As our knowledge of our universe increases with technology, so does our misuse of God to suit the desires of our hearts. If you put forth the effort and explore God beyond the need for Him to answer an occasional prayer, you will find there is more to him than you ever realized.

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Easter Island by James W Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Koukl, Greg. Faith Is Not Wishing – 13 Essays for Christian Thinkers. Signal Hill: Stand To Reason, 2011. Print. []
  2. Houdmann, Michael. “What are the most common things people think are in the Bible that are not actually in the Bible?” Got Questions. Gotquestions.org, 2002. 9/20/2013. []
  3. Ross, Hugh. Why The Universe Is The Way It Is. Grand Rapids: Baker Books, 2008. Print. []

A Unique World View

Reading Time: 4 minutes

I recently had an engaging conversation with an acquaintance about a wide variety of topics. Ranging from life after death, near-death experiences, child-parent relationships, and the value of human beings. At one point, I mentioned one of the novel features of Christianity. Precisely the logical, sequential, and deductive nature of the Gospel. For example, we all have the capacity to love, but if we love, we must have free-will, and if we have free will, we can commit evil, and if we are bound by evil, we need a savior, and finally, a savior gives us hope for redemption. On the fly, I could not do it the justice I can here, but I wanted to take a moment and look at each step.

Most of us will agree that love is the ultimate ethic. Some like to think that God is love, nothing less, and nothing more. Some may even quote 1 John 4:7-8 to support their belief. Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. Yet scripture makes it quite clear that God is not only loving but just, Jeremiah 17:10 I the Lord search the heart and examine the mind, to reward each person according to their conduct, according to what their deeds deserve. God is not only just, but has a host of other character traits. Luke 6:36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful. Psalm 119:90 Your faithfulness continues through all generations; you established the earth, and it endures. Psalm 71:19 Your righteousness, God, reaches to the heavens, you who have done great things. Who is like you, God? Love is just one of the many character traits of God.

When God created us, He also gave us free will. Again most would agree you can’t have love unless you have free will; otherwise, we would be nothing more than biological androids pre-programmed to act, feel, and believe what we were programmed to. Proverbs 16:9 The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. If you don’t believe in free will, then you must conclude your opinion is pre-determined. As is mine and we have nothing to weigh and consider because every thought is pre-determined. Moist robots, nothing more. Mark Clark put it this way, “Given unguided evolution, it is not likely creatures such as you and I would ever develop ‘true’ beliefs. We would only develop beliefs that helped us survive.”1 Take it a step further, and you can rightly conclude we should doubt every belief we have, yet NOBODY lives that way. 

Given that we have free-will, to believe as we choose, then comes the possibility of sin. Just look around, sin in our world is not only a possibility but a reality and we experience it every day. Scripture lists several behaviors that just about every sin you can think of would fall into one of these listed. Proverbs 6:16-19. There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies, and a person who stirs up conflict in the community. For argument sake, I will call sin evil.

Since we are surrounded by evil and are all responsible for it, we need a savior, and we find that in Christ. He came to this world for the specific purpose of rescuing us. We are captives and have no hope of escape. Isaiah 61:1 The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners, John 12:44-47 And Jesus cried out and said, “Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who sent me. And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness. If anyone hears my words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world.

Finally, since we have a savior, we have hope for redemption. Ephesians 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, Colossians 1:20-22 And through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross. And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him,

Love > Free-will > Sin > Savior > Redemption

What other world view, what other religion, offers this rational and sequential doctrine or ideology? None. Ravi Zacharias wrote, “The verification of what Jesus taught and described and did make belief in Him a very rationally tenable and existentially fulfilling reality. From cosmology to history to human experience, the Christian faith presents explanatory power in a way no other world view does.”2

Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay


A Unique World View by James W Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

  1. Clark, Mark. “Problem of Science.” The Problem of God. Zondervan, 2017, pg. 36 []
  2. Zacharias, Ravi. “Behind Every Question.” The Logic of God. Zondervan, 2019, pg. 3 []
Response to homosexuality

Response to homosexuality

Reading Time: 6 minutes

Image by Sharon McCutcheon from Pixabay

Keep the love going as we peacefully protest Fire church Sunday after pride. During the pride event you will have a chance to hear Flip Benham and other representatives of Fire church throwing damnation our way. Lets show them that they cannot come into our community and intimidate us.
We will meet just before Service begins, and protest as they gather, we will have a silent protest as service is going and let them have it as they leave for the day.

Remember we will be peaceful and respectful, something they don’t understand. We are going to STAND TOGETHER AS A COMMUNITY to show that our love is stronger than their hate.1

The above was a post on qnotes, an LGBT community calendar in North Carolina. The church they were protesting was Fire Church located in Concord North Carolina. Number 1 on the church’s vision statement: Fire Church is “Living out and cultivating the values and ideals of the New Testament, which include holiness, purity, sacrifice, service, community, fellowship, spiritual empowerment, worship, intercession, and divine presence.2

It sounds like a church I would enjoy attending, and after reading the whole of their vision-statement, I would feel comfortable recommending it to anyone who lived near by. Yes, in their list of ‘What They Believe’ there could be some theological issues for some, but as my wife recently reminded me, it is the plain things that matter.

I am not sure what prompted the desire on the part of the LGBT community in Concord, North Carolina to want to protest the church, but it could be the book written by the church founder, Dr. Michael L. Brown, author of A Queer Thing Happened to America. It is on my Amazon wish list.

What I wanted to focus on and share was the outcome of this and  the response by the Fire Church to the protest by the LGBT community.

According to Examiner.com, Brown was out of the country during the protest, but posted this response on his blog: “On behalf of FIRE Church, I want to extend to you the warmest welcome and let you know that we are thrilled that you are here with us on Sunday. We have been praying for you for a long time!

As always, you will only meet with love, kindness, and respect from the FIRE leadership and congregants, and we proclaim to you once again the amazing grace of God. Jesus died to save us from our sins, heterosexual and homosexual alike, and only in Him can we find forgiveness, redemption, and transformation. Jesus alone is the Healer, Savior, Deliverer, and Transformer.

It has been my personal joy to have shared meals together with the last two editors of Q-Notes as well as to have given an open mic to the past editor of Q-Notes so he could share his own story in our church building. Our doors are open to you, our hearts are open to you, and as Jesus gave Himself for your salvation and well being, we are committed to following in His footsteps.

Should you ever want to have an open forum for the purpose of mutually respectful discussion on the issues that divide us, we would gladly host that event in our church building or participate in one of yours. Let us know what we can do to help make that happen.3

Sure enough, when the protesters arrived at Fire Church they were embraced with smiles and warmth by the congregation. The protesters were invited into the service and offered water, snacks, and truth.
This was no surprise really, according to Examiner.com. Scott Volk, one of the pastors at Fire Church, wrote in response to the protest announcement, prior to the protest, “As the pastor of FIRE Church, I just want you to know that you’ll be greeted with the same love and compassion as we always endeavor to show anyone–you are more-than-welcome! You make mention of the ‘hate’ that we show. Yet, in all our years here we’ve only desired to reach out with love to everyone in the local community here whether they are labeled as gay or straight. Hopefully, you’ll see that love demonstrated on Sunday as you protest.4

This post prompted the following replies from some of the followers.

Love is the most disfigured mask that hate wears.”

You can fool yourself, Mr. Volk. You can fool your parishioners. But you can’t fool God. He knows what’s in your heart, and it isn’t love. It’s hate.

FIRE Church…how perfect, a church that symbolizes HELL.
What these fire church people probably don’t understand is that spending an eternity ANYWHERE with them is what I would consider a true HELL. They should concern themselves with their own pathetic lives and leave other alone to theirs…5

Scott Volk and others pointed out that those who said Scott was a hater, had never met him. Volk took it a step further and invited anyone who wanted to come over to his house to meet him, his family, and enjoy a dinner. Hats off to Scott Volk for showing such tolerance. His actions show us the true meaning of tolerance, that is putting up with something we find disagreeable. The biased media, where most are educated on culture and current events, has changed the meaning of tolerance to acceptance, or approval.

As Christians, we are called to point out Jesus to others. Some may do this by their quiet, respectful, loving manner, hardly saying a word, but offering a daily sacrifice of time and relationship to others. Extroverts may share by engaging people on the street, with a bull horn, or casual conversations about their faith. Most Christians fall somewhere in between the two extremes, but where ever they stand, it is their job is to share Christ.

Our goal for members of the homosexual community should be no different than the goal for the heterosexual community. Turning a homosexual to a heterosexual is not a requirement for salvation; Jesus Christ is.

Over the years, I have had multiple students who have entered the gay community, and all of them have continued to receive the same love and concern from me they had prior to their life style choice.

Yes, I think homosexuality is a sin, but so is sex outside of marriage, and the lustful thoughts every man or woman has if they allow themselves to.

The Fire Church and their staff showed us how to respond to the LGBT community and we need to take note. Following the event, Dr. Brown reported, “The next day, Monday, Aug. 27th, the leader of the protest called into my radio show to apologize publicly for the protest, explaining that their ‘anger  … was aimed [in] the wrong direction.’ And then he said these words: ‘Once we got there Sunday morning we were greeted with absolutely perfect love. I mean, it was fantastic.’ Praise God!6

After the event, one protester wrote, “On another note, My partner and I had dinner with Dr Michael Brown and Pastor Scott Volk to talk about our differences last week. While we didn’t change any opinions, we were able to get our stance on the issues out on the table.7

A month ago, someone posted on Facebook Matthew 7:1, in reply to someone calling homosexuality a sin. “Do not judge, or you too will be judged.” It is absurd: we all judge, and make judgments every day. From when to slow down for or drive through a yellow light, to what we think of our friends’ parenting style. The difference is when we make moral judgments. Some think we ought not to judge, quoting Matthew 7:1. Read the rest of Matthew – you will see that He is talking about judging someone when you yourself are sinning worse than they are.

If we were to take that passage literally, we would never be able to call a friend or family member on their infidelity, abusive behavior, drug addictions, or any unhealthy habits or life styles.

So, for those of you who quote Matthew 7:1 when I am making a judgment you don’t agree with, quit judging me. I am entitled to my opinion, and you should be more tolerant. Can you hear my sarcasm and see my eyes rolling?

Sources:
1. “Peaceful Protest of Fire Church in Concord” Qnotes. goqnotes.com, 26 August 2012. Web. 19 June 2015.
2. “Vision Statement” Fire Church. Fire-church.org, 2012. Web. 23 June 2015.
3. Smith, James-Michael. “LGBT group cancels protest because church is ‘too nice’” Examiner. Examiner.com, 28 August 2012. Web. 20 June 2015.
4. Ibid.
5. “Peaceful Protest of Fire Church in Concord” Qnotes. goqnotes.com, 26 August 2012. Web. 19 June 2015.
6. “The Gay Protest That Encountered the Love of God” Charisma News. Charismanews.com, 8 August 2012. Web. 23 June 2015.
7. “Peaceful Protest of Fire Church in Concord” Qnotes. goqnotes.com, 26 August 2012. Web. 19 June 2015.

Creative Commons License
A response to homosexuality by James Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://www.dev.christianapologetics.blog.

42 Questions Christian’s can’t answer

Reading Time: 8 minutesWhy can’t the all-powerful God forgive someone of their sins after they die? Example: A Christian man that is seemingly on God’s good list makes a stupid decision and decides to drink a little too much at the fish fry. On his way home he crashes into a mini-van killing a mother, her two children and himself. This man led a very faithful life and made one stupid, yet grave mistake. If this man did not ask for forgiveness of his sins before the electrical activity in his brain ceased, then God will judge him and send him to hell to burn for eternity.

I had read other blogs about Pucket who had asked the above question, and 50 others, and I had read he was a former Christian, who had a solid grasp of the Gospel. Frankly, this question shows a tremendous amount of ignorance concerning salvation and the good news of the Gospel, so it surprised me.

The New Testament is packed with scripture that gives us a view of salvation that is simply based on our acceptance of the gift Christ offers. Christ saves all those who believe in Him, and it is not conditional on our asking forgiveness on every single sin we commit. Not only is that unnecessary, but impossible.

The above illustration by Pucket can be carried to the extreme with another simple example. Say a Christian man who has lead a nearly sinless life was walking across the street carrying a gift and flowers for his wife of 30 years. Walking across in the opposite direction is a lovely young girl, in a short skirt, and top that shows off her nearly perfect figure. For a moment, this Christian man lets his thoughts wander into sin after they passed each other. Then, suddenly, a car that had been speeding ran the red light and instantly killed this man.

To suggest God would condemn this man to eternal separation from Him due to this one moment, before he could ask forgiveness, is silly. The verses of scripture that address this are numerous, so instead of constructing an argument, I will let scripture speak for itself. I have listed just list a few below.

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

John 5:24 “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life.”

John 6:37 “All that the Father gives me will come to me, and whoever comes to me I will never drive away.”

Acts 4:12 “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”

Romans 1:16 “I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile.”

2 Corinthians 5: 15-19 “And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men’s sins against them. And he has committed to us the message of reconciliation.”

Titus 3:5-7 “He saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us generously through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that, having been justified by his grace, we might become heirs having the hope of eternal life.”

Acts 13:39 “Through him everyone who believes is justified from everything you could not be justified from by the law of Moses.”

This question, and the scripture above, are a perfect lead in to asking, “Who then is going to heaven?” It is surprising how many think they are, due to their general, good behavior. The Pew Research center did a survey a few years ago asking how many Americans believed in a God or some kind of universal spirit, and over 90% responded positively. 1 Out of those respondents, 74% believe in heaven, but only 59% believe in hell. Pewpoll11

 

 

 

 

 

That suggests quite a few people have the notion that we are going to heaven no matter what kind of life we led.  In other words, some people believe that everyone will get a ‘get out of jail’ Monopoly card that will work in the afterlife, guaranteeing a seat in heaven.

Heaven33

 

Pewpoll22

 

Another figure that was worth mentioning was the percent of those who have a religion, felt that many religions can lead to eternal life. A shocking 70% feel that their way, (their own religion), is not the only way. Not surprising was the religions of Hinduism and Buddhism lead the way with 89% and 86% believing their religion is not the only way into heaven. 2 Not far down the list is the Evangelical believers, and 57% of them feel Jesus is not the only way to heaven.

With these kinds of figures, I would ask what is the point of Jesus? If we can just lead a relativity good life, where our generous actions and behaviors out weigh the selfish actions, and that would usher us into heaven, then why bother with the whole Jesus thing? Obviously, many Christians believe that. Where do they get that idea? Another Pew Research poll said, “Even among white evangelical Protestants, nearly three-quarters (72%) of those who say many religions can lead to eternal life name at least one non-Christian religion that can lead to salvation.” 3

Salvation is a gift. It is not something you can earn through good works or asking forgiveness each and every single time you sin. Salvation through Christ allows you to live a life free from condemnation, but with the realization that there was a price paid, because a just and righteous God demands it. This realization comes into play every day as we recognize it is impossible to live a perfect, sin free life. Ravi Zacharias said, “Jesus did not come into this world to make bad people good. He came into this world to make dead people live.” 4

When a person repents, accepts Christ as their Lord and Savior, their sins are forgiven, past, present, and future. This does not mean you go and sin all you want because of the get out of jail free card. God looks at the heart of a man, He knows their intent, their purpose. 1 Samuel 16:7. Gill’s Exposition puts it this way, “…though the heart is deceitful, it cannot deceive him, because he judges not according to outward appearance; he sees and knows the heart; and none but the Lord, or he who is Jehovah, can so search the heart as thus to know it.”

Mark Mittelberg told a story of a business man who was on an airplane sitting next to a pastor. Their conversation was polite and surface at first, but after a few minutes turned to more serious topics. The pastor was asking the man if he believed in heaven, and if so would he be allowed in. The business man felt he would because his good deeds surpassed his selfish deeds.

The pastor then gave the man an illustration on a napkin, by drawing a ladder that would reach up to heaven. Each rung on the ladder represented a spot for one person on earth. Up at the top is God, because He is perfect. Each person on earth would be placed on the ladder according to their good deeds. The higher up the ladder, the more good deeds a person did. The lower the part of the ladder were the Hitlers, child molesters, and mobsters.

The pastor brought up Mother Teresa, who has admitted she has sinned many times in her life, this, despite her being considered one of the most caring, giving, and ethical persons who ever lived. She would not consider herself even past ½ way up the ladder. The pastor then mentioned Billy Graham, who many in America consider to be an outstanding moral and ethical man, who has lead a long dedicated life serving the Lord. The pastor pointed out that Billy Graham would not consider himself above Mother Teresa, and has said he has sinned many times in his own life. The pastor then marked a spot for Billy Graham below Mother Teresa on the ladder, and both were below the ½ way mark.

He then asked the man where he would be on this ladder, who hesitantly wrote his name near the bottom below both Mother Teresa and Billy Graham. The pastor let that sink in for a minute as the business man contemplated his good deeds compared to those icons of honorable human behavior.

The pastor then asked the business man where he thinks the cut off point on the ladder would be for those who ‘get’ to go to heaven for their good deeds, and if he would be above it. The business man replied, “I guess I am screwed.” to which the pastor replied, “Well welcome to the club. We’re all in that kind of predicament. And here’s the real problem: do you think, if you got serious and tried to to do good for the rest of your life, you could ever hope to climb above Mother Teresa?” 5

The point is driven home in the above story. It is not about leading a good and moral life, but accepting the gift of salvation, and realizing it is a gift that everyone should be thankful for. The latter illustration works well because each and everyone of us can be placed on this ladder according to our deeds in this life. Everyday we walk by, talk to, work with, wake up next to someone who may be above us or below us on the ladder, but where we are placed on the ladder has nothing to do with being ushered into heaven.

laddertoheavenAccepting the gift of salvation that Christ offers, and realizing we can never reach the top of this ladder because of our own works is key. Our nature tells us to hang on tight to whichever rung of the ladder we are clinging to. We try not to get our fingers stepped on by the person above us, and at the same time try to mash the fingers of the person attempting to climb past us. If we are not careful we might slip down further, below those we were above moments before. All the while Jesus is telling us to let go, lean back, and fall into His arms, and he will then lift us, not only above the spot where we were on the ladder, but then, up and past those who were above us because of their good deeds.

It is that moment you fully realize no one on the ladder will ever make it into heaven, because you can’t climb into heaven, but only fly there, in the arms of Jesus.

Sources:

1. “Religious Beliefs and Practices.” Pew Forum. Pewforum.org, 1 June 2008. Web. 17 September 2014.
2. “Many Americans Say Other Faiths Can Led to Eternal Life”, Pew Forum. Pewforum.org, 18 December 2008. Web. 19 September 2014.
3. Ibid
4. “A Loving God Wouldn’t Send People To Hell” The Mumbling Christian. Mumblingchristian.com, 20 February 2009. Web. 20 September 2014
5. Mittelberg, Mark. The Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask. Carol Stream: Tyndale House, 2010. Print

 

 

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42 Questions Christian’s can’t answer by James Glazier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://www.dev.christianapologetics.blog/.

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