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Thread: What God did Abraham love?

  1. #11
    Senior Member Tehilah Ba'Aretz's Avatar
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    I would limit my response to the ones who have faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I know some orthodox Jewish people who have a profound love for God. More than one has told me that God is real to them on a personal basis. I've heard stories of miracles, healing and divine protection. More than one has confessed that Jesus revealed Himself to them in their prayers. Several have told stories of friends or relatives who have deathbed encounters with someone or something and said something to Jesus at the moment of death.
    I confess that I am troubled by the idea that God would deliberately deny salvation to a people group, any people group. I am not willing to allow anyone to accuse the entire people called Jews of rejecting Jesus based on racial prejudice or suspicious theology. I am not capable or worthy of the position of judgment of who God will bring into the kingdom either. I do have questions and I confess that I lean toward believing that God loves the Jewish people and is currently working very hard to be sure that all Israel will be saved. However, that really isn't the OP here, is it?

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  3. #12
    Senior Member Colonel's Avatar
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    I know some orthodox Jewish people who have a profound love for God. More than one has told me that God is real to them on a personal basis
    This is often what people tell Christians in order to stall or reject the idea that they need a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Sufi (mystic) Muslims and New Agers do the same thing. Some generically religious people will also say that they feel a connection to some kind of God or force. As opposed to for instance Hindus they may well claim that their connection is to the one true God and that Jesus Christ isn't necessary for that.

    More than one has confessed that Jesus revealed Himself to them in their prayers
    How do you know it was Jesus ?
    Last edited by Colonel; 08-02-2015 at 07:33 AM.

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  5. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Tehilah Ba'Aretz View Post
    I would limit my response to the ones who have faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. I know some orthodox Jewish people who have a profound love for God. More than one has told me that God is real to them on a personal basis. I've heard stories of miracles, healing and divine protection. More than one has confessed that Jesus revealed Himself to them in their prayers. Several have told stories of friends or relatives who have deathbed encounters with someone or something and said something to Jesus at the moment of death.
    I confess that I am troubled by the idea that God would deliberately deny salvation to a people group, any people group. I am not willing to allow anyone to accuse the entire people called Jews of rejecting Jesus based on racial prejudice or suspicious theology. I am not capable or worthy of the position of judgment of who God will bring into the kingdom either. I do have questions and I confess that I lean toward believing that God loves the Jewish people and is currently working very hard to be sure that all Israel will be saved. However, that really isn't the OP here, is it?
    Speaking as a Gentile believer to a Jewish believer, you might want to reconsider the perception of "salvation" from a specifically Jewish perspective rather than a christian one.

    I believe that "Salvation" as a concept has been perverted by christianity to mean something different to what it originally meant to those who initially heard it.
    OT history makes it clear that salvation was deliverance from Philistine, Famine and plague etc. Nowhere in the OT do we see any particular reference to salvation as "heaven when you are dead".
    In preaching the Gospel, Jesus was very specific that "the Kingdom of Heaven is nigh unto you." ie. not merely something for when you die!

    Heaven when you are dead is something that has grown out of christian tradition, but how scriptural is it?

    Look at Matt19v16. The rich young man comes to Jesus asking "Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?"
    If anyone asks that question today, they would be met by an eager flurry of people directing him to the sinner's prayer in Romans10, or something similar. However if you look at the passage carefully, you will see that Jesus gives him the run around, and the man leaves disappointed.

    If we were to witness that in any of our churches, people would be really offended at the missed opportunity to get someone into heaven. But if Jesus isn't fussed, why should we be?
    The simple answer is that the gospel message was aimed at where we are on earth, not when we die!

    To unwrap the story.-
    The man came to trade, "What good thing must I do". The man's mistake was in thinking that eternal life could be earned.

    His question of what "good" or "good thing/deed" was therefore answered in similar terms of reference! Jesus might well have said, "If you want to earn eternal life by your own goodness, you must obey all the laws for all time without fail."

    20"All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?"

    21Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."


    Now I am sure that all on this forum know that you cannot buy eternal life by good deeds, so why did Jesus mislead that man?

    It seems to me that Jesus invariably responds to people at the place they happen to be at that time. Therefore to those who sought righteousness by personal goodness, he just made it clear the level of goodness required.
    ie. He set them up to fail, and that is precisely what the beatitudes are about, impossibilities. Once we realise the futility of our own attempts, we stop striving and seek the mercy of God instead!

    Clearly Jesus was not in the least concerned about that man's eternal state, so why should we always be so worked up? Why worry about Jewish or any other evangelism? It is the Holy Spirit that gets people into heaven, not evangelists.

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  7. #14
    Senior Member Colonel's Avatar
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    So does that mean that we do not need to evangelize, the result will be the same regardless ?

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  9. #15
    Quest:I believe a Jewish person who really does love the Father will be led to Jesus by the Holy Spirit and will recognize Him…
    I agree, and how very reformed of you!

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  11. #16
    Administrator fuego's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tehilah Ba'Aretz View Post
    I confess that I am troubled by the idea that God would deliberately deny salvation to a people group, any people group.
    God doesn't deny anyone salvation. It's open and free to all. But one does have to meet His conditions for it. Paul in Romans is pretty clear about what a person has to do to be saved. But I certainly agree that any sincere person truly seeking to know the true God, that He will reveal Himself to him in the person of Jesus.

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  13. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by fuego View Post
    God doesn't deny anyone salvation. It's open and free to all. But one does have to meet His conditions for it. Paul in Romans is pretty clear about what a person has to do to be saved. But I certainly agree that any sincere person truly seeking to know the true God, that He will reveal Himself to him in the person of Jesus.

    I can almost completely agree.. except the one wee bit that God reveals Himself first.. we respond to to that.


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  15. #18
    Super Moderator Quest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Francis Drake View Post
    Speaking as a Gentile believer to a Jewish believer, you might want to reconsider the perception of "salvation" from a specifically Jewish perspective rather than a christian one.

    I believe that "Salvation" as a concept has been perverted by christianity to mean something different to what it originally meant to those who initially heard it.
    OT history makes it clear that salvation was deliverance from Philistine, Famine and plague etc. Nowhere in the OT do we see any particular reference to salvation as "heaven when you are dead".
    In preaching the Gospel, Jesus was very specific that "the Kingdom of Heaven is nigh unto you." ie. not merely something for when you die!

    Heaven when you are dead is something that has grown out of christian tradition, but how scriptural is it?

    Look at Matt19v16. The rich young man comes to Jesus asking "Teacher, what good thing shall I do that I may obtain eternal life?"
    If anyone asks that question today, they would be met by an eager flurry of people directing him to the sinner's prayer in Romans10, or something similar. However if you look at the passage carefully, you will see that Jesus gives him the run around, and the man leaves disappointed.

    If we were to witness that in any of our churches, people would be really offended at the missed opportunity to get someone into heaven. But if Jesus isn't fussed, why should we be?
    The simple answer is that the gospel message was aimed at where we are on earth, not when we die!

    To unwrap the story.-
    The man came to trade, "What good thing must I do". The man's mistake was in thinking that eternal life could be earned.

    His question of what "good" or "good thing/deed" was therefore answered in similar terms of reference! Jesus might well have said, "If you want to earn eternal life by your own goodness, you must obey all the laws for all time without fail."

    20"All these I have kept," the young man said. "What do I still lack?"

    21Jesus answered, "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me."


    Now I am sure that all on this forum know that you cannot buy eternal life by good deeds, so why did Jesus mislead that man?

    It seems to me that Jesus invariably responds to people at the place they happen to be at that time. Therefore to those who sought righteousness by personal goodness, he just made it clear the level of goodness required.
    ie. He set them up to fail, and that is precisely what the beatitudes are about, impossibilities. Once we realise the futility of our own attempts, we stop striving and seek the mercy of God instead!

    Clearly Jesus was not in the least concerned about that man's eternal state, so why should we always be so worked up? Why worry about Jewish or any other evangelism? It is the Holy Spirit that gets people into heaven, not evangelists.
    If you are speaking of evangelistic style, Paul said that to the Jew I am a Jew and to the Greek I am a Greek (paraphrased).

    1 Corinthians 9:19-23
    19Though I am free and belong to no one, I have made myself a slave to everyone, to win as many as possible. 20To the Jews I became like a Jew, to win the Jews. To those under the law I became like one under the law (though I myself am not under the law), so as to win those under the law. 21To those not having the law I became like one not having the law (though I am not free from God's law but am under Christ's law), so as to win those not having the law. 22To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some. 23 I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

    Yes, it's the Holy Spirit that reveals the truth to the heart, reveals the open door of opportunity to the soul, and does the work of birthing them into the Kingdom...but there is clearly a responsibility on the part of the evangelist to be sensitive to the wisdom and direction of the Holy Spirit. In this passage Paul seems to be saying that it's imperative and could cost souls if we are not..He says 'to win'. We know he is not saying HE saves them but is at least implying his actions play a key role in that process..

    That is why the evangelist is called and gifted to serve...so I am saying that the evangelist should have a keen burden for those they are led to share the gospel with..

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  17. #19
    Senior Member Colonel's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fuego View Post
    God doesn't deny anyone salvation. It's open and free to all. But one does have to meet His conditions for it. Paul in Romans is pretty clear about what a person has to do to be saved. But I certainly agree that any sincere person truly seeking to know the true God, that He will reveal Himself to him in the person of Jesus.
    Jesus would reveal himself as Jesus and tell whoever it was that "this is the price you have to pay for salvation, to believe in me" and not in some generic God or generic version of God, even the Jewish version of him. He would not reveal himself as "the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob" and leave it at that.

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  19. #20
    Super Moderator Quest's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Femme* View Post
    I agree, and how very reformed of you!
    Ah..no...

    Is it possible to love GOD and not Jesus? No. Jesus said to the Pharisees that had they KNOWN the Father they would recognize HIM..that had they loved the Father they would love Him..because to see one was to see the other.
    Two things stated here...1. They were not born again so loving God and recognizing Jesus would have been done in an essentially lost person. (total depravity denies that ability) 2. I only acknowledged here that some who claimed to be God followers were actually not and some actually were. That, IMHO is all Jesus was saying as well. Some were hypocrites and some were sincere.

    I understand how one could presume I was saying the Hly Spirit only draws those that love God but that was not the case..I was responding to what Tehilah Ba'Aretz was discussing..."I confess that I am troubled by the idea that God would deliberately deny salvation to a people group, any people group." And that while the culture at large may be rejecting Jesus, that God deals with individuals.

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