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    Triund's Avatar
    Triund Posts: 271, Reputation: 24
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    #1

    May 1, 2010, 10:17 PM
    Before Jesus
    The question came to my mind after reading an email from my friend who is non-Christian. In the email he said that people were going to heaven even before Christ came on this earth. I know that there is no way we can go to heaven except through Jesus. I do not doubt it. Just curious to know that others who were not in the group of Isreal, how was Lord God bringing them to HIM like HE is doing now through Jesus.
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    Wondergirl Posts: 39,025, Reputation: 5431
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    #2

    May 1, 2010, 10:20 PM

    Please read Hebrews 11. That should answer your questions. The magic word is "faith."
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    arcura Posts: 3,773, Reputation: 191
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    #3

    May 1, 2010, 11:52 PM
    Triund,
    One should remember that Jesus as the Word Of God was around since before time.
    Also we know that there were people in heaven long before Jesus was born as a man, Jesus and named some Himself said so and named some of them.
    Also keep in mind that Moses and Elijah were with Jesus at His transfiguration and both of them had been centuries dead of the body.
    So the must have been in heaven long before the birth of Christ.
    As Jesus said, God "Is the God of the living" not the dead and those that went to heaven before His birth were living.
    So you can tell your email friend about that.
    God was loving and merciful all throughout the bible as He is today.
    Peace and kindness,
    Fred
    I Newton's Avatar
    I Newton Posts: 110, Reputation: 8
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    #4

    May 2, 2010, 02:51 AM

    Hi Triund

    If you want to go by the Bible, Jesus specifically said that no man has gone to heaven. You can quibble about word meanings etc, but that is what he said.

    The only scriptures we have that may confuse us is ones that say that some men were taken up into the heavens, which of course could mean into the heavens where birds fly so as to provide a means of escape for them so they would not die at that moment.

    The other scripture has us considering a vision of Moses and Elijah with Jesus. You can believe that this vision contradicts Jesus word that no man has gone to heaven before him or you can believe that no man DID go to heaven before Jesus.

    Jesus even spoke of John the Baptist being the greatest man on earth but even the lowest in heaven is greater than John. (John was dead at this time, so if you want to think that men went to heaven before Jesus, you would have to believe that John was not one of them.

    Then of course, if people did go to heaven before Jesus came to earth, then there was nothing that had to be saved.

    If they went to heaven before Jesus and they went to heaven after Jesus, then Jesus did nothing. Many will argue that it was the way in which they are saved that is different, but that is all said because they have to believe that men did go to heaven before Jesus.

    Until Jesus died for us on the cross, there was no way we could get into heaven, that is why Jesus had to come and save us.

    If he did not come and lay down his life for us, mankind would be doomed.

    Jesus allowing us to be forgiven, gave us the resurrection.

    Lazerus did not go to heaven, he was to remain in the ground until the last day when all from the tombs would hear Jesus voice and come out of the tombs.

    Jesus death gave us salvation, gave us forgiveness so we could go to heaven.

    Those who did not hear the word, but had good hearts would have been taken to heaven when Jesus opened the way.

    Everyone had the chance to be forgiven and later go to heaven, but the Jews were chosen as God’s special people; to stand out from the rest. They had God’s teachings and guidance and so they also had great responsibility to do as he said.

    The other nations did not have such responsibility; hence they were left to fend for themselves.

    But they too were accepted into heaven when Jesus cleansed the sins of everyone; not just the Jews, not just Catholics, not just Protestants.

    God is not partial, anyone can be a Jew. But if you take on the role of a Jew, you must also live up to his standards; that is the responsibility the modern day ‘Jew’ has to face.
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    sndbay Posts: 1,447, Reputation: 62
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    #5

    May 2, 2010, 01:24 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Triund View Post
    Just curious to know that others who were not in the group of Isreal, how was Lord God bringing them to HIM like HE is doing now through Jesus.
    The OT has many written words concerning God's communication to all souls. And it is also written that they were all led by the same spiritual Rock as we today, by following Christ Jesus.
    1 Corinthians 10:1-2-3-4 Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea; And did all eat the same spiritual meat; And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

    Christ Jesus was the WORD of God made flesh, and as it is written in John 1:1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
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    ScottGem Posts: 64,966, Reputation: 6056
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    #6

    May 2, 2010, 01:36 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Triund View Post
    I know that there is no way we can go to heaven except through Jesus.
    I'm sorry, but I have a MAJOR problem with that statement. If you want to say "I believe..." or "I have complete faith..." or "I have no doubt..." you will get no argument from me. But when you claim to "know" something that there is no absolute proof of I have to object. Especially when what you claim to know goes against what I and many others believe, I have to object.

    Frankly, I don't believe in a heavenly paradise. But if one does exist, I strongly believe that it is not restricted to people who worship a certain way. I believe, as long as one follows what is often called the Judeo-Christian ethic, the Ten Commandments, the Golden Rule, etc. In other words, as long as one lives a good and moral life, then they will be admitted.
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    #7

    May 2, 2010, 02:00 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by I Newton View Post
    Hi Scottgem

    The question then is ... what is a good and moral life?
    While I don't disagree with what you wrote, I think I defined what I meant by a good and moral life. But I will take it one step further. One does not have to believe that Jesus was the son of God to follow his teachings about moral issues.
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 39,025, Reputation: 5431
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    #8

    May 2, 2010, 02:06 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    But if [a heavenly paradise] does exist, I strongly believe that it is not restricted to people who worship a certain way. I believe, as long as one follows what is often called the Judeo-Christian ethic, the Ten Commandments, the Golden Rule, etc. In other words, as long as one lives a good and moral life, then they will be admitted.
    And maybe just maybe that is what belief in Jesus Christ really is, that it's all encompassing based on the Two Greatest Commandments, Love God and Love Each Other as manifested by each of us living "a good and moral life."
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    Fr_Chuck Posts: 81,301, Reputation: 7692
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    #9

    May 2, 2010, 02:40 PM

    Jesus came as a sacrifice, to be the one to replace all of the animal sacrifice, Before Christ the Hebrew nation had a covenant and promise from God. They looked forward to his coming and acted on it though faith with the rules of the Old Testdment. Since Jesus fulfilled the promises of the bible, he finished what was started with the promises given to Adam.


    And of course there were people in Heaven before Christ that is told and shown to us in the many stories of the Old Testement and of that in the New Testement
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    Fr_Chuck Posts: 81,301, Reputation: 7692
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    #10

    May 2, 2010, 02:45 PM

    I will note "I Newten" this is Triund's thread, not yours, you were the one trying to move it to address your non related issues.

    And it is your posts that have been deleted

    Please do not try to run the boards and tell the OP that they need to address your issues.

    Your obvious lack of Christian knowledge is annoying at best but you side track answers by moving in non related directions because of it.
    dwashbur's Avatar
    dwashbur Posts: 1,421, Reputation: 175
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    #11

    May 2, 2010, 03:43 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    I'm sorry, but I have a MAJOR problem with that statement. If you want to say "I believe..." or "I have complete faith..." or "I have no doubt..." you will get no argument from me. But when you claim to "know" something that there is no absolute proof of I have to object. Especially when what you claim to know goes against what I and many others believe, I have to object.
    Jesus himself was the one who said that no one comes to the Father, i.e. can have eternal life, except through him. Either he was right, and no one can live a "good and moral" enough life to satisfy God's demands and hence the only way they can make it is through him, or he was wrong and his death was essentially pointless. Those are two diametrically opposite points of view and they can't both be correct.
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    #12

    May 2, 2010, 04:06 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by dwashbur View Post
    Jesus himself was the one who said that no one comes to the Father, i.e. can have eternal life, except through him. Either he was right, and no one can live a "good and moral" enough life to satisfy God's demands and hence the only way they can make it is through him, or he was wrong and his death was essentially pointless. Those are two diametrically opposite points of view and they can't both be correct.
    And what proof do you have that he actually said those words? Or that those words represent a reality? This goes back to the Rabbi Gelman column I posted in another thread. If you take the bible, literally, word for word, you will find several instances of diametrically opposite passages.

    If you find comfort in your faith in Jesus and that by following his teachings and worshiping him as the son of God you will find salvation or heaven or whatever, then I'm happy for you. But the fact is that your belief in the Bible is a matter of faith, not provable fact. And as long as that is the case, you (nor anyone) cannot make it as a statement of fact. I'm not challenging your belief, I'm just challenging making a statement that it is established fact. Doing so challenges my beliefs. If it's wrong of me to challenge your beliefs, it's wrong for you to challenge mine.
    dwashbur's Avatar
    dwashbur Posts: 1,421, Reputation: 175
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    #13

    May 2, 2010, 04:26 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    And what proof do you have that he actually said those words? Or that those words represent a reality? This goes back to the Rabbi Gelman column I posted in another thread. If you take the bible, literally, word for word, you will find several instances of diametrically opposite passages.

    If you find comfort in your faith in Jesus and that by following his teachings and worshiping him as the son of God you will find salvation or heaven or whatever, then I'm happy for you. But the fact is that your belief in the Bible is a matter of faith, not provable fact. And as long as that is the case, you (nor anyone) cannot make it as a statement of fact. I'm not challenging your belief, I'm just challenging making a statement that it is established fact. Doing so challenges my beliefs. If it's wrong of me to challenge your beliefs, it's wrong for you to challenge mine.
    When did I say it's wrong for you to challenge my beliefs? I have never even hinted at such a thing.

    Actually, my belief in the Bible is based on 30 years of intense study of the original languages, the histories behind the manuscripts, form- and redaction-critical examination, and all the rest. Be careful before you make such absolute statements about someone you don't know. I've spent my whole life digging into this from every angle I can find, and the fact is, those words are reliable. Some of the earliest and most reliable copies of the New Testament we have are from the gospel of John, and there's an unbroken succession of copies that all say the same thing in that passage. If you disagree, the burden of proof is on you to show that they're *not* actual words that came from Jesus himself. You're free to disagree about that, of course, and as a patriotic American who believes in free speech, I will adamantly support your right to be wrong ;)
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    I Newton Posts: 110, Reputation: 8
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    #14

    May 2, 2010, 04:47 PM

    Fr Church

    >I will note "I Newten" this is Triund's thread, not yours, you were the one trying to move it to address your non related issues.

    And it is your posts that have been deleted>

    What on earth are you on about?

    You obviously found my post upsetting.

    I also apologised to Triund for diverging, which is something I have never seen anyone else apologise for on this site.

    I even saud that if anyone would like to answer my post they can start another thread.

    What problem did you have with my thread Fr Chuck?

    Is there ANY of my posts you would like to address?

    Or do you just delete them?

    Is this a Christian site or a Catholic site?
    Wondergirl's Avatar
    Wondergirl Posts: 39,025, Reputation: 5431
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    #15

    May 2, 2010, 04:54 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by I Newton View Post
    <And it is your posts that have been deleted>
    What on earth are you on about?
    It's good that you aren't complaining then.
    I have never seen anyone else apologise for on this site.
    I've been here nearly three years now. It happens all the time on most of the boards.
    I even saud that if anyone would like to answer my post they can start another thread.
    The rule is that one doesn't hijack someone else's thread. If one wants to bring in a new idea, it is up to that person to start a new thread.
    Is this a Christian site or a Catholic site?
    "Totally Christian -- and even more Christian than I gave it credit for in the beginning," responded the Protestant.
    ScottGem's Avatar
    ScottGem Posts: 64,966, Reputation: 6056
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    #16

    May 2, 2010, 05:10 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by dwashbur View Post
    When did I say it's wrong for you to challenge my beliefs? I have never even hinted at such a thing.

    Actually, my belief in the Bible is based on 30 years of intense study of the original languages, the histories behind the manuscripts, form- and redaction-critical examination, and all the rest. Be careful before you make such absolute statements about someone you don't know. I've spent my whole life digging into this from every angle I can find, and the fact is, those words are reliable. Some of the earliest and most reliable copies of the New Testament we have are from the gospel of John, and there's an unbroken succession of copies that all say the same thing in that passage. If you disagree, the burden of proof is on you to show that they're *not* actual words that came from Jesus himself. You're free to disagree about that, of course, and as a patriotic American who believes in free speech, I will adamantly support your right to be wrong ;)
    First, if you are so used to research then you should be more careful about questioning what someone says. I never said that you said it was wrong to challenge beliefs. But that IS what you are doing. According to what you just posted, the earliest documentation is from the gospel of John. Even if that is is accurate, then it's the word of John that Jesus said such, doesn't prove that Jesus said it. I'm not sure how you can state that it is fact. And you ignored the question if it being reality. I'm not saying they aren't the words from Jesus, just that there is no absolute proof they are. That leaves the burden of proof on anyone claiming they are. And, yet again, even if he did say it, what proof is there that its reality.

    From what I know of the subject, the words New Testament was not written down until Emperor Constantinople 300 years AFTER the death of Jesus.

    The only real fact here is that belief in the Bible is a matter of faith. That there is no absolute proof of any of it. If there were then everyone would follow the same religion. So when you state that the Bible is factual you challenge my belief that it is not.
    Athos's Avatar
    Athos Posts: 1,089, Reputation: 55
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    #17

    May 2, 2010, 05:19 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by dwashbur View Post
    Actually, my belief in the Bible is based on 30 years of intense study of the original languages, the histories behind the manuscripts, form- and redaction-critical examination, and all the rest.
    Your "study" is not an argument based on reason. As you say, it's based on faith - not the same thing.

    Be careful before you make such absolute statements about someone you don't know.
    Aren't you doing the very same thing? Supporting his right to be "wrong"?

    I've spent my whole life digging into this from every angle I can find, and the fact is, those words are reliable.
    The "fact" is? You're confusing fact with your belief.

    Some of the earliest and most reliable copies of the New Testament we have are from the gospel of John, and there's an unbroken succession of copies that all say the same thing in that passage.
    You're not responding to Scott's point.

    If you disagree, the burden of proof is on you to show that they're *not* actual words that came from Jesus himself.
    Sorry, but you carry the burden. You cannot "prove" that they are the words of Jesus by challenging Scott to prove they are not. It doesn't work that way.

    You are, however, entitled to believe anything you want. Belief is not the same as fact.
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    Fr_Chuck Posts: 81,301, Reputation: 7692
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    #18

    May 2, 2010, 05:41 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by I Newton View Post
    Fr Chuch

    >I will note "I Newten" this is Triund's thread, not yours, you were the one trying to move it to address your non related issues.

    And it is your posts that have been deleted>

    What on earth are you on about?

    You obviously found my post upsetting.

    I also apologised to Triund for diverging, which is something I have never seen anyone else apologise for on this site.

    I even saud that if anyone would like to answer my post they can start another thread.

    What problem did you have with my thread Fr Chuck?

    Is there ANY of my posts you would like to address?

    Or do you just delete them?

    Is this a Christian site or a Catholic site?

    Talking about : I deleted two of your posts where you were demanding answers to your posts and complained about Truiund high jacking the thread,

    I deleted posts that appear to be obvious trollish or trouble making, I have moved you to that opinion at this point

    Yes, posts do normally say they are sorry and correct their behavior after getting both unofficial and official warnings about their attitude and their posts.

    This is a Christian site, which includes Catholics since they are Christians, ( something you seem to refuse to accept)

    Your posts are fairly obvious ideas from some of the christian cult teachings, anti catholic, anti jewish , don't accept the trinity and more.

    Another issue you come acting like you want to learn what Christianity really is, but refuse to accept some of the basic teachings of it and act like you already know what it is.

    So yes your behavior is for from acceptable, and you don't come on another persons thread and start demanding they answer your questions.

    And before you answer this, don't, stick to the thread or don't post. All of your posts will be reviewed very closely.
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    dwashbur Posts: 1,421, Reputation: 175
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    #19

    May 2, 2010, 06:58 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by ScottGem View Post
    First, if you are so used to research then you should be more careful about questioning what someone says. I never said that you said it was wrong to challenge beliefs. But that IS what you are doing. According to what you just posted, the earliest documentation is from the gospel of John. Even if that is is accurate, then it's the word of John that Jesus said such, doesn't prove that Jesus said it. I'm not sure how you can state that it is fact. And you ignored the question if it being reality. I'm not saying they aren't the words from Jesus, just that there is no absolute proof they are. That leaves the burden of proof on anyone claiming they are. And, yet again, even if he did say it, what proof is there that its reality.
    Is it reality? That gets us way too far afield of the original topic, and should probably be a separate thread. It's clear that you want to reject the reports in the gospels, and that's your privilege. But historical investigation says otherwise.

    From what I know of the subject, the words New Testament was not written down until Emperor Constantinople 300 years AFTER the death of Jesus.
    Run that by me again??

    The books of the New Testament were all written before the end of the first century, probably either by apostles of Jesus such as Peter and John, or by companions of apostles such as Luke and Mark. Even a scholar as liberal as John A. T. Robinson concluded that all the books, even the gospel of John and Revelation, were written before A. D. 70, the destruction of Jerusalem. I don't necessarily agree that the Johannine writings were that early, but it illustrates the point. I suspect you're thinking of the councils that established the canon, which is to say, which books actually belonged in the New Testament and which ones didn't qualify. But everything was written while the generation that knew Jesus was still around. There's a story that Constantine, after his conversion, commissioned the scribes in Alexandria to make 50 copies of the New Testament, so that may be what you're thinking of. But we have part of a copy of John's gospel that dates from A.D. 125, less than 40 years after it was probably written; we have papyrus copies of several of the gospels and epistles from the second century. The earliest complete copy of the New Testament that we have, Codex Sinaiticus, dates from somewhere around the fourth century, but comparison of it with the earlier papyrus copies shows that the vast majority of the New Testament text comes to us in the same form and words that the original authors wrote.

    The only real fact here is that belief in the Bible is a matter of faith. That there is no absolute proof of any of it. If there were then everyone would follow the same religion. So when you state that the Bible is factual you challenge my belief that it is not.
    To some extent, all historical conclusions are a matter of faith; we have to believe that the people who recorded events knew what they were talking about. That's as true of the New Testament as it is of Caesar's Gallic Wars or Thucydides' Peloponnesian War or anything else. Historical investigation of the New Testament shows that it is accurate; for a quick overview of just one of the gospels, see A. T. Robertson, Luke The Historian In The Light of Research. You can read it on Google books: Luke the historian, in the light of ... - Google Books

    And in historical investigation, "absolute proof" is a myth. But we can go with the probabilities, and the probabilities favor the accuracy of the New Testament. If you choose to believe otherwise, that's your prerogative. But it means your belief goes contrary to the evidence.
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    dwashbur Posts: 1,421, Reputation: 175
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    #20

    May 2, 2010, 07:06 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Athos View Post
    Your "study" is not an argument based on reason. As you say, it's based on faith - not the same thing.
    That's not what I said. Please go back and read it again and realize that you got it backwards.

    My belief is based on evidence. Blind faith is no faith at all, it's wishful thinking. I've asked the hard questions, that's why I went after those sciences I mentioned. You can try to redefine everything I do as faith if you want to, but you're wrong. I'm not a CSI, nor do I play one on television, but I follow the evidence wherever it leads. That's how I ended up where I am.

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