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Many would answer: Well, that depends.  The common view of what morality means might differ from person to person.  This begs the question then: What exactly is morality?  One dictionary definition is this: "A system of ideas of right and wrong conduct."*  That is an admittedly broad definition of morality.  Perhaps then, the larger question might be this: Who gets to set the standards as to "right and wrong conduct?"  First, let's examine one aspect of morality - sexual morality.  The world we live in is changing rapidly as to sexual mores.  Do you have doubts about this?  Please question your grandparents or some other trusted senior, ask them if they feel societal views on sexuality have changed dramatically from the time they were in school.  You might be surprised by the answer.  Not too many decades ago, the idea of living together without being married was frowned upon by society and was labeled as "living in sin."  Homosexuality (sodomy in particular) was viewed as an abomination and even outlawed in some places. Getting a divorce and marrying another was also viewed as sinful, and even today in a few lands (i.e. Philippines et al) is illegal.  Yes, societal views on sexual morality has changed and keeps changing.  Many applaud this as a good thing.  What about you?  

This piece is not written to condemn anyone.  Rather, like my journal entries in the past, it is written to highlight the Bible's viewpoint on the issue at hand.  Some feel that the Bible is an out-dated, old-fashioned book that has no relevance to modern living and standards.  As a result, these persons may feel that they are in the best position to decide for themselves what is moral and what is not (Genesis 3:5).  Is that how you feel?  Others are convinced that the Bible is an inspired book, one that has been written for the benefit of all humankind ( Timothy 3:16,17).  I encourage you to dust off your Bible and examine the following verses for yourself.  Only then will you be in an educated position to determine your future choices in relation to morality.  

First, back to the question as to who gets to set the standards as to right or wrong.  For God-fearing persons, the answer is obvious - God does (Isaiah 48:17,18).  Yet as the scripture cited earlier from Genesis pointed out, it is Satan's contention that humans should be able to decide for themselves right from wrong.  What this statement implied was that humans do not need the Creator to tell them what to do, how to live.  He insinuated that humans, as well as angels (see Genesis 6:1-4; Revelation 12:9), being free moral agents should have the right to self-determination.  This was a direct challenge to God's sovereignty, or his right to rule.  It also propelled Satan to the status of a "god" (see 2 Corinthians 4:3,4), a rival to Almighty God.  Adam and Eve chose to pursue an independent course, and their offspring (us) have suffered as a result (Romans 5:12).  Nevertheless, many will say that we are better off for it.  But look around you.  What do you observe?  Is mankind really better off on their own, making their own moral decisions?  Sexually transmitted diseases run rampant, some incurable. The divorce rate is sky-rocketing, tearing families apart.  Abortion is a global pandemic (my word choice) that many feel goes against the very grain of what it means to be moral.  Teen suicide is increasing, often related to dating too young, break-ups, with sexual jealousies often being a root cause.  Children born out of wedlock are frequently at a disadvantage, financially and from a familial standpoint, though there are, of course, exceptions to this.  The list goes on as to the ills that have been visited upon society as a result of the so-called "new morality," a movement that first began about 50 or so years ago, when rock-n-roll, the use of hallucinogenic drugs, and rebellion against established order combined to create a "perfect storm" that  significantly changed the western worldview (Judeo-Christian) on morality (see 2 Timothy 3:1-5).

Now to the issue at hand: What does the Bible have to say about sexual morality?  Please turn in your Bible to 1 Corinthians 6:9,10.  Here the scriptures make clear that any who practice fornication (sexual immorality i.e., generally sex outside of marriage), any who practice homosexuality, or adultery... will NOT inherit God's kingdom (see also Revelation 21:8).  You see, God created human sexuality both for pleasure (Proverbs 5:15-19) as well as for pro-creation (Genesis 1:28).  However, HIS standards dictate that such be limited to married persons (Matthew 19:3-9).  This seems harsh to many, even impossible.  Yet many have adopted these and other Bible standards and have managed to live happy lives.  

So, what to do if you really want to live a morally clean life (from the Creator's point of view) but are finding it difficult to measure up?  Take heart!  You can ask for Holy Spirit (the power beyond ourselves) to accomplish this (Matthew 7:7,8; 2 Corinthians 4:7).  The good news is that once you exercise faith in Jesus' shed blood, repent of the former deeds, turn around to a new life (new attitudes, new way of thinking), salvation is still possible, no matter what things you practiced in the past, no matter how long you practiced them (see Acts 3:19,20; 1 Corinthians 6:11).  

No doubt many will read this and find it distasteful, an attempt to turn back the clock, as it were.  That, of course, is to be expected.  This piece is being offered for those who (1) want to know what the Bible really teaches on the matter and (2) wish to draw closer to their Maker.  But it is also written for those faithful church attendees who are confused because their church may have adopted some or all of the current trends on morality.  This was foretold to occur long ago (2 Timothy 4:3,4).  By putting your trust in God and in His inspired word and adopting His viewpoint on morality, putting it into practice in your life, you can be assured of being on the right path  (Matthew 7:13,14).  

* American Heritage Dictionary

**for more information visit JW.ORG
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:icontheimpossiblewriter:
TheImpossibleWriter Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
It sounds like you are almost preaching a sermon there
Nicely done
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner Mar 4, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
Thanks, but the Scriptures get all the credit
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:icontheimpossiblewriter:
TheImpossibleWriter Featured By Owner Mar 7, 2014  Hobbyist Writer
I agree there
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:iconheart-to-ink:
Heart-To-Ink Featured By Owner Dec 8, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Wow. I can't give you a big long comment like the ones below mine, but I can say you did a really nice job on this. A lot of thought and a lot of referencing. It takes a lot of guts to post something like this and I'm glad you did ^^
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thanks for reading
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:iconmoon-lit-words:
moon-lit-words Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013
some of these comments have me wanting to inarticulately rant ^^; in particular, i cannot wrap my mind around the wall of ignorance that says Catholics aren't Christians. that's all the further i'm getting into that subject

recently, i've started listening to american family radio during some of driving shifts for work. i feel their hearts to be a little narrow, their words to portray too much self indulgence, but they introduce good things to consider as far as a Christian based culture - morality, i suppose, as you put it

i'm too tired tonight to read through your bible references, but i shall later. perhaps after doing so, the readings will have answered some questions i wanted to come to you, personally, about, regarding Christian morals in our culture

thanks for writing and sharing; sorry i don't get around to much of what you do
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
yes please read the verses, that's what is truly important.  :)
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:iconreverand-tom:
Reverand-Tom Featured By Owner May 23, 2013
I finally got a chance to read this. This is great and on the money. Anytime people get away from what the Bible teaches, mankind becomes god instead of God--and mankind tends to set their own standards. Anything to say that either God does not exist, or they don't need God in their lives. I could easily start preaching here, but nevertheless, you did an outstanding job here. Keep it up! :happybounce:
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 23, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thanks so much
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:iconreverand-tom:
Reverand-Tom Featured By Owner May 24, 2013
I also looked at some of the comments you received for it. You defended yourself quite well on the negative ones. Keep up the good work.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 24, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thanks again, let the Scriptures be our guide... (John 17:17)
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:iconsonofyeshu:
SonofYeshu Featured By Owner May 22, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"Nevertheless, many will say that we are better off for it. But look around you. What do you observe? Is mankind really better off on their own, making their own moral decisions?"

Best few lines of text I've read ever since I came to dA
What magnificence built into the very framework of creation.
Jesus........... is just Master!
May Jesus forever be praised. Amen.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 22, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thanks so much, and let's praise the ONE who Jesus praised too (Matthew 11:25)
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:iconsonofyeshu:
SonofYeshu Featured By Owner May 24, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Amen, Glory to God
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:iconsapphire-x-dreams:
Sapphire-X-Dreams Featured By Owner May 19, 2013
Excellent article. We must all continue to pray and ask for the Spirit to place a hedge of protection over our hearts so we can obey GOD's teachings, not mans. Thank you for answering the call to post this! :)

GOD BLESS~!
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 19, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
So nice to hear an appreciative response
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:icondelice1941:
Delice1941 Featured By Owner May 19, 2013
:rose:
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:iconpurpleink777:
PurpleInk777 Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
Hi,

You don't know me, but I found your journal and its accompanying work, after having posted a philosophical work, just now. :)

I must say; I agree 100% with your essay. As a person who believes stongly in sound morals, I'm extremely grateful to find such treasures as this! :nod: Thank you for sharing! :salute:

May the King of the Universe bless you richly, for exploring the topic of morality in an intelligent manner! :)
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 19, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thanks, but i can only take minimal credit, since the Scriptures are quite clear. but thanks so much for the kind words
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:iconpurpleink777:
PurpleInk777 Featured By Owner May 19, 2013
But of course! God-breathed, inspired Scripture is the best method of reaching others, when it comes to speaking of such things! God's Word is final - no matter how secular society may view morality! ;)

But you're quite welcome, all the same! :iconhowdyplz:
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:icondelphifilm:
delphifilm Featured By Owner May 18, 2013   Filmographer
I think moral is indeed about right and wrong. Only that is to be asked who sets wrong and right? In a democracy the majority decides about it. But government alone cannot implement moral.
I think that moral is a slight power that emerges from thymos and eros. Thymos is everything for a group. Eros is everything an individual decides and achieves for oneself. Thymos is the complement for this. Systembiologists say that a group of apes is more resistent to harm, the more it can keep balance between eros and thymos. Everyone who needs somebody else for favors, is doing favors for others - and versavice. So it seems to be about balance of needs and favors. This sounds like a modern definition of moral, and it is.
Religion driven morality does not seem progressive to many people. Just take what is presented on tv as being reality. We have this weird scripted reality tv - but that would go to far, now.
This kind of moral seems too detailed and people wonder where the scripture takes the truthfulness.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
from the Almighty Creator of heaven and earth (Revelation 4:11)
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:iconbullet-magnet:
Bullet-Magnet Featured By Owner May 17, 2013
In western civilisation there is no worse source of morality than the Bible, a book that doesn't only endorse slavery but tells you how to buy and sell them, while also promoting the most disgusting idea in human history: vicarious redemption by human sacrifice.

There are a great deal of problems in the world, many of which we actually know the solutions to. Solutions that will work if put into wider practice, yet the parties of god stand squarely in the way. We already know that the only solution to poverty that works is the emancipation of women and giving them control over their own reproductive system, both of which are perfectly opposed by the bible. Proper sexual education and access to proper resources will deal with STDs and teen pregnancy, yet the religious resist these measures. We already know that abstinence-only education only increases the prevalence of these social issues, this is observed fact. It is no secret that the most religious nations suffer the most from STDs, teen pregnancy, violent crime and poverty, while the least religious nations suffer the least. Religion is both the cause and the effect of these conditions: it actively promotes views that degrade human civilisation, and those degradations drive people to religion for all other sources of assistance have been eliminated. Which is does whole heartedly: all sources of public assistance in America are under constant assault by religious lobbies who don't want the competition, especially not competition from anyone who can provide real help and not just imaginary help.

We know empirically and logically that biblical morality has failed utterly. It doesn't just fail to correct the problems in society, it actively causes them. Biblical morality is the worst corruption in our society, and we see this in all the people who believe that the terrible things that it promotes are actually the highest good. It's like waking up in topsy-turvy town every single day.


As for the fifties being the start of a decline, it was not. Every single generation has been decried by those before it as being useless narcissists who will wreck everything, yet every generation has seen a vast increase in wealth, health, education and lifespan. Things are better now then they ever have been. What the older generations see as moral decay is actually just young people being young people who will eventually grow up and get over themselves just like their parents and grandparents did. There was a story in the Atlantic called "Why American Marriages fail," which said "The rock upon which most of the flower-bedecked marriage barges go to pieces is the latter-day cult of individualism; the worship of the brazen calf of the Self." Basically exactly what you said of the fifties. But this was published in 1907. It's been repeated every decade since and every decade before. It's the equivalent of observing today's toddlers and concluding that everyone born after 2010 are reckless delinquents who will pull your hair, draw on the walls and throw bowls of cereal on the floor without even considering the consequences of their actions. Generation sociopath, that's our preschoolers. Kids today, eh?
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
as mentioned in a previous comment, religion in general has been a force for bad, not for good. there are those who truly try to live up to Bible standards and find their lives elevated above the morass of filth being promoted as freedom of choice, and are generally happier for it. millions of Jehovah's Witnesses in 236 lands are living proof of such.
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:iconbullet-magnet:
Bullet-Magnet Featured By Owner May 17, 2013
It's the bible's standards that are the problem, not people's failure to live up to them. Nobody lives up to the bible's standards, they exclusively live down to them. They're truly awful, and all of us can do vastly better than even the best that the bible has to offer. It's not even hard. It aims that low.

As for the Jehovah's Witnesses, they are some of the worst examples of this that I know of, who always find themselves on the wrong side of social justice issues and frequently opposing life-saving medicine. Those who have escaped their clutches have yet to recover from the experience, and their families refuse to speak to them. It's called "shunning," you may have heard of it? Utterly obscene. [link] and make no mistake: it is the believers who turn their back on those they used to love, not the other way around, whatever they may tell you on the inside to justify their disgusting behaviour. Shunning hurts, but it is not pain caused by disbelief, it is pain deliberately inflicted by the faithful on the very people they are supposed to love unconditionally. I don't know why they work so hard to make this world worse and the people in it more miserable, but they are very accomplished at it.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
your views are skewed toward hatred and intolerance. it appears that you consider yourself a reservoir of wisdom, but you have nothing of value to offer anyone else. JW's embrace medicine and technology, you are sadly mistaken. and nowhere in the Bible is the idea of "unconditional love" taught. Armageddon will demonstrate the folly of such thinking (Revelation ch19).
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:iconbullet-magnet:
Bullet-Magnet Featured By Owner May 18, 2013
I'm not intolerant or hateful of people, but I am intolerant and hateful of ideas that deserve it. those ideas clearly harm the people who believe them and the people those believers come into contact with, and they are not based on reality.

It frankly doesn't matter if unconditional love is in the bible, it is a requirement of being a good human being (so I'm not surprised that it isn't found in the bible, incidentally the murderous fever dream you cited isn't even on topic). If a child of mine became a Jehovah's Witness it wouldn't do a thing to stop me loving them, but the inverse cannot be said. Any doctrine that can cause a parent to stop loving their child over such things is harmful to humanity, and it is no surprise that it is the same doctrine that praises Abraham for being willing to murder his own son just because he was told to. Awful, awful things. It's total moral bankruptcy.


As for JWs embracing medicine: does the blanket ban on blood transfusions ring any bells? I can only wonder how many lives that could have been saved were not because of this, as I wonder how many needlessly died between 1921 and 1952 when they forbade vaccination, or between 1967 and 1980 when they forbade organ transplantation. All three of which are the result of a rejection of reality-based thinking that is a religious hallmark, and it kills people.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
your ignorance of the truth and attempts to slander are not without precedent, to be sure. Jesus said that true christians would be hated and reviled, and you supply living proof. regarding the Bible mandate to "shun" unrepentant sinners (1 Cor ch5), JW's are hardly the only ones to practice such. shunning DOES NOT mean that we stop loving, just the opposite. shunning is a form of discipline designed to bring a sinner to their senses. before you take issue with this denial of continued society, which you call awful, awful, consider this: society at large practices a form of "shunning every time it locks up or sentences to death a murderer, pedophile, rapist, etc. etc. etc., or would your "unconditional love" allow these persons to roam free, without repercussion. the truth is, your argument against shunning is both hypocritical and hollow. regarding JW stand on blood use in medicine, we follow the Bible's admonition to "abstain from blood," (Genesis 9:2-4; Leviticus 17:10-16; Acts 15:19-21). if you had educated yourself on the subject you would find that none of JW's are COMPELLED to refuse blood, anymore than they are compelled to follow the many other Bible commands. when a person learns God's view on the sanctity of blood, he/she makes a PERSONAL decision not to accept. interestingly, non-blood medical mgmt is a growing field in hospitals all around the world. why? because doctors, surgeons and others are coming to regard such as a SUPERIOR form of treatment.

I write all of this, not for your sake, since you have made your views clear on the Bible and Christianity. i write it for the sake of the honest-hearted ones who will be reading these comments. please refrain from commenting further. thanks
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:icondangolovesyou:
DangoLovesYou Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Student Writer
Hey, I really liked your essay. Truthfully, I appreciated seeing your viewpoint so intelligently and fully expressed. You clearly know a lot about your subject, and your points were logical and well-supported. I'm an atheist, but this is really giving me a lot to think about, and it's very challenging to counter. Really, it's a treat to read. My only question would be between the connection of divorce rates and sexual morality. A couple can abstain from sex out of wedlock, and still have a failed marriage within just a couple of years. Perhaps I'm just being dense, but I was wondering if you could go into more detail on that, if you have a second. Please understand that I'm not trying to criticize, and I mean no disrespect. Aside from that, your points are excellent and mature.
Thank you for the enjoyable read! :)
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:iconmoon-lit-words:
moon-lit-words Featured By Owner Aug 7, 2013
less to persuade, more to encourage: tommy's words might the intervention of Christ reaching out to you. as he said: it's nice to see an open-minded atheist
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I'm so happy to find an open-minded atheist. thanks for commenting. to answer your question regarding divorce, yes, there are MANY reasons why people end up in divorce, sexual infidelity being just one of those reasons. if you read the verses in 2 Timothy 3:1-5, it exlpains how people's attitudes would change for the worse during the last days, on multiple levels. thanks again.
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:icondangolovesyou:
DangoLovesYou Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Student Writer
I read the verses a couple times through, and I think I understand your point. It's definitely something I'll be thinking about. Thanks for the clarification! :)
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 18, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
that is all i could ask for! thanks for reading
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:iconthe-golden-knight:
The-Golden-Knight Featured By Owner May 17, 2013
Bill and Ted got it right: "Be excellent to each other, and Party on, dudes!" Same (if not doubly) goes for sex: it's awesome when personal space isn't a problem.

My Mom still hates gays, lesbians, queers, whatever you want to call them. But I'm indifferent and neutral to the topic. And that doesn't relate to me, but like you're saying about talking to grandparents, sometimes it still goes so far back as the parents you still live with and have to put up with through your college years.

And no, I couldn't care less about some book of religion even if I tried. It could be a Bible (or *the* Bible, since I can't ignore the issue), some obscure oath, or even a code of honor. OK, so I appreciate cultural diversity, but I'm indifferent and unmoved by such texts that have things as plausible as a real-life Superman (parting oceans and talking snakes actually both sound like good ideas for comic books). But as far as such cultures go, I'm a Jedi! (Well, Neo-Gnostic if you want to be 'politically correct'.) I just trust my gut, use The Force, and fire from the hip. It's worked so far, with my almost 21 years of existence. What am I talking about? Well, Mom and/or Nana has a Bible in the basement, but I'm not going to dust it off. I'd rather play games or tweak them until I get to feel like *I* am God.

But I *like* abortion, and commoners are idiot peasants; the same so-called "ninety-nine percent" during that "Occupy X" movement. From what I observe, it's like the Medieval Divide, where there's a separation in terms of moral clout between the Noble and the Common. Yes, ideally commoners *should* be able to think for themselves, even though they are so stupid and arrogant it's disgusting. At least among the proven noble such arrogance has some claim of legitimacy since nobility is ideally *earned*. Now, I'm actually Libertarian in ideals, but I'm just saying it would be nice if I didn't have to be tethered to someone else's stupid mistakes. If there wasn't such divide, we wouldn't have something called authority figures - in common words, 'police'. Heck, we wouldn't even *have* "law" or "government" in that ideal case.

Going back a bit, divorces are up not only because commoners have lost commitment, but because commoners oftentimes find themselves in conflicting compatibilities with their supposed love relations. Marriage can only last if there is mutual intimate affection, and most of those peasants can't find that in each other. As a result, relationships have supposedly grown more casual. And the relationship itself has always been a screening test to see if there *is* that compatibility for long-term marriage (unless it's a 'casual relationship', or for that matter, casual sex).

Teen suicide is directly linked to this because the commoners have become so cynical since work from school and/or job is so inhumanely overbearing, families spawn ridiculous undue stresses upon their children all throughout the first 20 years of their existence or longer (I'm still dealing with it myself), and the weaker-willed peasants outright give up, resorting to suicide.


Long lecture short, I think much from Christian religion in general is a bunch of crock! :bleh: I put up with my girlfriend being Catholic simply because I love her too damn much. :tighthug: And it's that kind of love that idiot peasants can't find no matter how hard they struggle. Many of us 'sin' while living fruitful and happy existences. The only important point that "God" cares about is whether you give it its proper respect for literally creating *and* being All Existence collectively! "God" doesn't care *how* you express this respect, though. That's how the Crusaders got to Heaven (parodied in a Robot Chicken sketch: "I killed thousands in the name of my lord!"). :nana: From what I understand, that was basically a bunch of Christians slaughtering a bunch of Muslims, yet that was their way of paying homage to "God". So technically, that is morally just. Maybe I have my facts backwards, but if not, then my point stands valid.

And you think that was better or at least less punishable than fornicating or abortion?! More epic, maybe, but the morality still stands: according to Christians of that clan, killing for "God" is as just as your conscious can make it.

But that's not to say nothing good has come out from the 'main religion'. I mean, it tries to instill a sense of chivalry and honesty into all of us. But my point is, there are other ways to learn of the most important virtues (like Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, as I've cited earlier as an example), and such ways won't backlash independent or free thinking - nor do you get the result of frustrating (or *as* frustrating) parents. Christianity as you preach gets at least one thing right: Redemption. The trouble with these kinds of religions is that they all act as if they are *the* only right way.

Sorry for taking so much time, but I was writing this while bored at school waiting for time to pass, and also I wanted to write an essay on philosophy. It's what I do! ;p

Kick ass! :iconyeehawplz:
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:iconapostolicshadowninja:
Not saying this to offend or anything, but affection is not enough for a marriage. Real, true love is more than just feelings of lust or passion or affection. To quote from the Bible, "Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all thing, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never ends." 1 Corinthians 4-8. If one person truelly loves another, they will always continue to love them even if that person never loves them. They will strive to help them in every way, and do all the things to make that person happy, even if they themselves never have the chance to truely be happy. Love isn't always romance either. It could also easily be the love for a brother or sister or friend. That's a mistake made too often. But without this true kind of love, no marriage has a hope of lasting.

God never actually told the Crusaders to go kill the Muslims. God only ever told people to love your enemies, and to spread His word. God is violent himself when he wants to be (even *He* will only put up so much crap). Read Revelation, you'll see what I mean (if you do read Revelation, pay attention to the seven trumpets and you might be convinced that the Bible isn't a bunch of Bologna. It's not obvious, but if you study certain events in history and think of how someone in the Bible time would see those events it becomes pretty obvious). God promises hell to those who don't follow his rules.

I don't consider Catholics Christians. They violate way too many of God's rules.

I have one last thing to say. You're last statement, "The trouble with these kinds of religions is that they all act as if they are *the* only right way." Because you see, if you are a Christian you cannot accept that any other religions even have a possiblity of being correct. We are what you call an exclusive religion. We believe the words of our God: "...He that heareth my word, and believeth on him that sent me, hath everlasting life, and shall not come into condemnation..." (John 5:24) "And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life." (John 5:40) "And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)"...every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist..." (1 John 4:2) I won't bother showing you verses about the antichrist to prove what his fate will be. You probably have at least an idea of that.



Excuse me for my preaching. ^^; I hope you don't find this offending in any way. The last thing I want is a spiritual battle right now.
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:iconeremitik:
Eremitik Featured By Owner May 21, 2013
If you dont consider Catholics Christians, what religious group do you consider to be Christian?
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:iconapostolicshadowninja:
I cannot consider Catholics Christians because they blatantly ignore one of the most important rules in the Bible. That is, to worship no other god besides the Lord. Catholics worship humans and pray to them as well as angels. For instance, they pray to Mary. Mary was a human. She was blessed by God to carry Him in her womb and to raise Him, but she was as human as I am, and has as much power as me. Actually, she has less because she is dead and I am not. Same for all the other saints. They would probably fall dead if they knew that they are being treated as divine beings. Angels in the Bible are constantly telling humans not to worship them. Angels are only warriors and messengers and praise singers to God. They do only what God tells them to do. They don't take prayers because they don't act on their own accord. They don't actually have the power to do anything either without God's permission. If they went off and did things on their own they would be fallen angels, or demons, not servants of God.

I believe a Christian is a person who strives to be like God. I am part of what is called an exclusive denomination of Christians which means I believe there is only one way, and those who don't take that way will burn in hell. I won't say anyone is going to hell, but I will point out what the Bible says, one of which is not to judge. I believe that the only way to get to heaven is to repent, be Baptized in Jesus name, and recieve the Holy Ghost, evidenced by speaking in tongues. Those of my belief know that it takes much more than just that though. That is only the beginning. It's sad how many people don't even realize that much. It's sad how many people think God is three people. It's sad that so many people believe they know Him, but in truth have never even met Him.
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:iconeremitik:
Eremitik Featured By Owner May 23, 2013
A well put argument against Catholics. Thank you for explaining your position without resorting to a "holier than thou" attitude.
If I may ask- when you say "God" do you mean Jesus? I am under the impression that Christians follow the teachings of Jesus, which by extension, is the teaching of God as well, I guess...
I can see where people would be confused as to God being three different people, ie: Father, Son and Holy Ghost. For me, I believe it is to mean that they are different aspects of God- Jesus is God made into flesh and blood; "Father" is God himself and Holy Ghost is his spiritual aspect.

As far as going to hell, what about people like Ghandi, one of the most selfless people to ever live? Do you think he went to hell?
And what about native or aboriginal tribes who have never heard the word of God?

I am not trying to start a bitter argument here. I am just trying to understand your point of view.
My personal belief is that all religions are just different ways that man has created to worship God and that they all contain aspects of God himself and that there is no one true religion.
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:iconapostolicshadowninja:
You are welcome. I don't like "holier than thou" attitudes.
Yes, I do. I am an Apostolic Pentecostal, also known as a Oness Pentecostal. That means that unlike most Christians, I believe that the Father, Son and Holy Ghost are all the same person. Father is a title, son is a title, and spirit is a title. There are about 100 arguments I can make for my beliefs so I won't get into that. But being an Apostolic Pentecostal also means I follow whats called Holiness standards, which is really dressing in a different way.

I really hate to answer these sort of questions. Really I do. But, I believe that simply being a good, or even a great person isn't enough to get to heaven. I don't know if Ghandi is in heaven or hell, or any other great people. I personally think a lot of really, really good people will be in hell. But hey, I'll be totally okay if I'm wrong. As for those who never heard... I'm not really sure. As Christians it is our job to spread the Word, but not everyone will hear. Although there was a point in time where no one but the Isrealites could go to heaven. Sad, but that was God's choice, and since everything belongs to Him, He gets to do whatever he wants.

Thank you for not trying to start an argument, and I have no intention of fighting with you, as long as you don't fight with me. As long as this stays as us trying to understand each other and not convince each other I'll be okay.

My belief is that not all religions worship the same God. In the Bible, God states that there are false gods in several places, but I'll only tell you one. "For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him." I Corinthians 8:5-6. Also, my God came to earth and died for me. Any other god is not my God. Some people actually worship spirits of things (Native American tribes and etc.) though I believe they tried to worship the true God as well. They were incorrect to do that because God is a jealous god and does not share his worship with any being, no matter what they are.

I have a question for you now. You aren't a Christian right? Do you believe the Bible is true? And do you worship at all? In any way?
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:iconeremitik:
Eremitik Featured By Owner May 25, 2013
Again, well thought out statements...
Am I a Christian?? I guess, technically, I am. I was baptized as a Christian, my parents being of the Protestant denomination. Twice I have asked Jesus into my "heart". Once when i was a child and again when I was a teenager. Since those times, I have come to question the Christian faith, and subsequently, all religions, due to a variety of reasons- the "holier than thou" attitude of certain Christians being one of them.
I believe that faith is a very personal thing for each one of us. When I encounter people who preach/proselytize/stand on a soap box, that their religion is the one, true religion and I will burn in hell unless I concede/convert/believe exactly as they do, especially when I find out that these same people dont behave in what I believe is a Christian manner, I have a big problem with that.
Please done think I am condemning you for your belief. You have stated what your belief/faith is but you have not tried to convert me or tell me that I am wrong. I respect that. You may think that, but you havent said it. ;)
Do I think the Bible is true? I think it is a truthful account of what "man" interpreted Gods word to be. Much like I think the Koran is as well, for example.
I dont really worship in any way. I do believe there is a God, though. I believe I have felt his/her/its power and influence. (I hope you dont take offense at my gender ambiguity of God.)
I do believe that there are "false" gods out there but I also think that most religions worship the "one true God"- its just in a different way than Christianity.
I know part of my unsurety is the type of person I am. I tend to question everything and I have a difficult time with anyone who is sure of anything. Especially people who think fact is the same as belief and are willing to condemn me for their belief when it is not a fact. For example; its a fact that the sun is hot. Its a belief that it will still be hot tomorrow.
I also think that these people who preach to me, and others, genuinely want us to be saved as they feel they have been.

Apostolic Pentecostal? I havent heard of that denomination before.
Do you believe as you do because that's what your parents have taught you to believe? Or have you looked into other religions/Christian denominations and found AP to be the one that resonates with you the most?
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:iconapostolicshadowninja:
I have always been taught that fighting with people (or preaching/getting on my soap box/etc.) is pointless. The people who really have any interest at all will talk to me like you are now. I know you have no interest in converting, but I feel it is right to share what I believe with anyone who is truely willing to hear and leave it at that. There's nothing else I could do anyway. After people know what I believe it's up to them to decide if they want to believe it too. There is absolutely no point in harrasing them. If anything that will just drive them away. Also, I try to keep my opinions about people (whether they're going to heaven or hell) to a minimum. I try not to think about who's going where at all. It isn't good for anyone.

Heh. I have no issues with you calling God an He/Her/It since I personally don't think "He" really has a gender. I think people just call Him HIm because 'he' can be used in general, and He came to earth as a man. Also, I'm glad you've felt God before. It's amazing how many "Christians" I know who haven't.

I am not surprised you haven't heard of AP before. Not many people have. We're pretty small. Technically, we weren't even an actual denomination until 1914 (roughly around there at least) when the Azusa Street Revival happened. We however, believe we are the same as the original followers of Christ were. We are pretty oddball-ish and you can usually easily pick out one of us from off the street. AP has actually done fairly well in Africa.

Why do I believe what I believe? Well, to be honest, it did start with only my parents. They taught me what I believe, but they did always back it up with the Bible. Eventually I was baptized and got the Holy Ghost. However, after that, there was a time where I seriously questioned my beliefs. I never considered that God wasn't real, it's just uncomprehensible to me, but I seriously wondered if what I believe was right. In truth I backslid, though you couldn't tell by looking at me. I was careful never to let anyone see what I was feeling and thinking on the inside. And then something happened. I have no idea what it was, but one night at church all my doubts just disappeared. I really don't know why it did, to this day I still wonder, but I have never once questioned what I believe since that night. I also have verses to back up most of what I think, so that helps I think. One issue I do still have though, is that during that time I started watching anime, and I still haven't stopped. Most Christians I know, my denomination or not, condemn me for this. Aparently, anime is evil, and anyone who watches or -God forbid- likes it, is possesed. And yet those same people watch things like Harry Potter (which I myself haven't watched). I'm not saying these people are bad, or Harry Potter is evil, but I truely cannot understand them. I can't see how anime is worse than Harry Potter. It's not like I watch the pornography stuff, or the homosexual stuff, so I honestly don't see the wrong in it. So long story short (too late probably), no denomination is filled with perfect people. Hope that answers your question!
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(1 Reply)
:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
hmmm... a bit of a ramble to be sure, especially from someone who has lived the grand sum of 21 years. anyway, regarding so-called christianity (i.e., christendom - look it up) all i can say is that much of what is done in the name of Christ in fact has absolutely nothing to do with him. Gandhi said it best (paraphrased) " I love Christ, but I don't like christians, because you don't act like Christ." Amen! true christians follows the narrow path of love and kindness, rare today to be sure Matthew 7:13,14).
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:iconeremitik:
Eremitik Featured By Owner May 21, 2013
The problem I have with most religions is their self proclamation of being the "one true religion".
Ghandi is arguably one of the most selfless and giving humans the world has ever seen. I just cannot understand how person like that would be doomed to "hell" just because he is hindu and not christian.
Personally, I believe that there is no one "true" religion. I believe God to be among them all and the Bible to be just one guide to morality.
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 21, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
that is a common conception. thanks for commenting
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:iconkieth-wolfe:
Kieth-Wolfe Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
thanks for posting this :D now i actually know where in the bible these standards are. (i've been trying to find them, but that was like looking for a needle in a haystack with my ADD [minor, but still makes reading, studying, and the like difficult]). thanks!
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
you are welcome, there are many more references to God's view on morals. if you have a cross-reference Bible, it can be especially helpful!
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:iconkieth-wolfe:
Kieth-Wolfe Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
i don't, i really do need to get one :/ thanks for the advice though!
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
thank you, but all glory goes to the One who has the right to set the standards for all
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:icon7lulu7:
7LULU7 Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I feel like I misunderstood some parts of the bible after reading this. This is an excellent piece of work i must say :love:
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:icontommyboywood:
tommyboywood Featured By Owner May 17, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
it's an easy thing to do, especially since many church representatives no longer concern themselves with discussing moral issues, leaving their flocks confused
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