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In the Name of God بسم الله

Dave follower of The Way

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  1. When you read the accounts of Jesus life and teaching in the Gospels you see Jesus the Messiah and his followers coming into conflict with the Jewish teachers of the Law because they didn't strictly keep the Jewish law. They didn't cerimoniously wash before meals, they didn't observe the Sabath in the way expected, they were friends of people who were desipised and considered 'sinful', they didn't avoid people who were ill with 'unclean' diseases. Jesus the Messiah uses these things to teach that true faith in God is not a matter of outward observences but a matter of a heart change. Jesus the Messiah even teaches that ritual religious practice like regular prayer and fasting is not enough to please God. Jesus the Messiah focuses on a picture of God who joyfully and generously forgives and welcomes even the rejected and dispised. He gives hope for people like you and me who know we fail and fall short of God's standards. I see no movement away from these teachings of Jesus. In fact they are emphasised and encouraged. Even today the gospels are read every Sunday. Jesus the Messiah is held up as an example. We are called to follow his teaching which brings life, freedom and joy, and which opens a way to knowing God as our intimate Fathern and experiencing the fullness of God through his Holy Spirit living in us. All this based on the teaching of Jesus the Messiah.
  2. And replying to @Irfani313 This is an important question but unfortunatly it has no basis. The accounts of Jesus life, teaching, death and resurrection were not writen by Paul. They are faithful accounts written by eye witnesses and from them we can learn who Jesus was and the significance of his death and resurrection. The teaching of Paul explains and defends those accounts. He does not add to them but draws conclusions and brings the historical events into the light of the Hebrew Scriptures showing how the person of Jesus the Messiah fulfills and completes the promises of God. Jesus taught the people before he had died and been resurrected. It was therefore not possible for him to refer to it directly. At times he refered obliquely to his reign and comming glory. On the other hand Paul writing from post the death and resurrection of Jesus the Messiah, was able to understand the teaching of Jesus the Messiah in the light of those events. He was able to give instruction and interpritaion to the followers of Jesus to enable them to live a holy life of love and service to God and those around them. This is exactly what Jesus the Messiah both taught and exemplified.
  3. Your interpretaion of this verse is making your prophet and Ali on a level of guardian with God. It is almost deifying these two people. Only God can be our Wali. Whereas the sunni translation suggestion "friend" does not elivate any people to the level of protector along with God. The same word Wali is used for God in Qur'an 2:107 Do you not know that to Allah belongs the dominion of the heavens and the earth and [that] you have not besides Allah any protector or any helper? This is a common theme in the Qur'an that only Allah can be our Wali. No human, however highly we regard them can have that place.
  4. Jesus didn't leave a seccessor. Why because he is still alive. A living person doesn't need a seccessor. Jesus today is exercising his authority and power which has been given him by God. He is rulling from his throne today. John, the friend of Jesus the Messiah, saw a vision of heaven. He discribed what he saw in Revelation chapter 5. When he talks about "The Lamb" it is a metaphore describing Jesus the Messiah who died and was raised to life. 11 Then I looked and heard the voice of many angels, numbering thousands upon thousands, and ten thousand times ten thousand. They encircled the throne and the living creatures and the elders. 12 In a loud voice they were saying: ‘Worthy is the Lamb, who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and strength and honour and glory and praise!’ 13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, saying: ‘To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honour and glory and power, for ever and ever!’ 14 The four living creatures said, ‘Amen’, and the elders fell down and worshipped.
  5. The forgivness section is not about how we are forgiven but the extent to which we are forgiven. God's forgivness is there for all who come and ask for it. That forgiveness is provided through the sacrifice of Jesus. But the prayer is a call to us to forgive others. Jesus the Messiah tells the story faithfully recorded in Matthew 18:21-35 There was a servant who owed a lot to his lord and was forgiven, but later he went and didn't forgive someone who owed him a little. The lord heard about it and removed his forgivness. The lead us not into temptation section has nothing to do with where sin comes from - human depravity, or satan, or 'the world' - we know that God will not tempt anyone it is not his nature to do that. So the prayer is asking God to hold back temptation or to help us to avoid it. It is not wrong to ask God to help us not to face trials, it is human nature to want this, but in praying this prayer we are offering our lives into God's hand asking both for protection but also for the strength to overcome when God allows temptation into our life. I know I need to ask God for help to overcome the 'whispers of the devil'. He is a good God and will provide the strength and a way out so I will be able to avoid or not be overcome temptation. Our Father, makes this a family prayer. And it is often called this. We are in God's family he is our Father, and Jesus is our elder brother he is the head in the family. It is important that we don't take this prayer out of the context of the accounts of Jesus and his teaching in regard to the difference between his relationship with The Father and our relationship with The Father. Both Jesus and his followers call God Father, but we call God Father as created beings subject to him, whereas Jesus the Messiah calls God Father on a completly different level as the eternal expression of God's living word.
  6. What do you mean by intercede or intercession? For an intercessor to be effective the person needs to have influence and position before the one they come before. God is Holy, all powerful and separate/different from his creatures. Our intercessor before God needs to have authority to stand in God's presence with nothing getting in the way of his pleading for us. If the person comes with failings of their own it makes their intercession invalid because they need an intercessor themselves. We need to be careful that we don't credit God with a disregard of the seriousness of our shameful acts and the sin we do that makes us dirty. All the people you mention as possible intercessors, except Jesus the Messiah, never claimed to have any right in and of themselves to stand before God. But Jesus the Messiah declared "I am The Way, The Truth and The Life. No one comes to The Father (God) but through me." (John 14:6) In saying this he was claiming ultimate authority as the only valid intercessor on behalf of people. I agree with your prayer - May God protect us on Judgment day. How does that fit with your first comment "If God wants me to go to hell, I will go to hell" What is the point of asking and hoping for protection if your destiny has been set by a capricious God? I don't believe God wants anyone to go to hell. It is completley against his character. God's desire and aim is that all be rescued on the day of Judgment. He calls out to us to come to him and be included in his family. Jesus the Messiah truly interceeds for those who come to him and his intercession is effective and valid. I have no fear of the outcome of Judgment Day because my intercessor has already opened the way and I am already accepted by God and a member of his eternal family.
  7. This is an interesting perspective - You are equating the worship of Jesus with the worship of an idol. This would be understandable if those first followers of Jesus were not monotheists. But although, as you say, the grekk background belivers soon out numbered the Jewish background believers, we see no argument in the stories of Acts about the person of Jesus. In fact the first followers, including Paul, honoured Jewish tradtions by worshiping in the Temple and in synagogues, and by teaching from the Jewish scriptures. When you study Greek and Roman mythology, unlike your comment, you find very little that echos their myths in the stories and beliefs about Jesus. Jesus was not a powerful, promiscuous, angry demigod. His life was one of purity, humility and suffering, caring for the poor and marginalised, seeking obscurity rather than fame. His divinity didn't come as his humanity was purged out of him. He is seen as pre-existant before all time. There is no point where he came into existance by some "divine promiscuity" (God forbid). His suffering and death, therefore, did not remove his humanity making him able to join the pathanon of gods in 'heaven'. Rather, he carried that humanity through death to resurrection and ascension to 'the heavenly realms'. See this hymn to Jesus from Ephesians chapter 1 19 [That you may know God's] incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is the same as the mighty strength 20 he exerted when he raised Christ from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms, 21 far above all rule and authority, power and dominion, and every name that is invoked, not only in the present age but also in the one to come. 22 And God placed all things under his feet and appointed him to be head over everything for the church, 23 which is his body, the fullness of him who fills everything in every way. My OP asking "What if it is true?" finds an answer in this hymn writen only 30 years after Jesus death and resurrection.
  8. This is a very high position to place a person. Can a human being rescue us from the consiquenses of rejecting God? The prayer Jesus the Messiah taught describes who The Father is, The Father is in heaven. This points to power and authority over all creation. So "Our Father in heaven" talks about an intimate relationship with the powerful God - "in heaven" is not about distance or separation. The prayer goes on and says "May your name be kept holy" So although God can be known as Father, we are reminded to worship and come before him with awe and respect.
  9. Yes - I used watercolour - I've tried acrylics but feel watercolour creates something with a different atmosphere.
  10. Thank you for drawing attention to this acount - When you read this in the context of the whole Gospel acount of Jesus the Messiah and his life and teaching you see that it fits with the person Jesus the Messiah was. He was a real human with real feelings and aprihensions, like you and me. In the face of the suffering he was about to go through he acknowledged to God what was on his heart and yet subited to the road that he had chosen to tread. When I am facing pain and hardship, I can learn from this example and be honest to God about my fears but also submit to him knowing his will is best. Your understanding of the humanity and divity of Jesus is the problem here not the fact that Jesus talked about his "soul". It is not Jesus' soul that made him divine. Every human has a soul. So Jesus the Messiah had a soul like evryone else. Jesus by nature was human and also by nature was God, but we see here in the accounts of the garden and the cross Jesus the Messiah willingly submiting to the plan of redemtion and deliverence. A plan we can all take advantage of as we seek to find a solution to the shame we face before the Holy and righteous God. Yes you are right - the disciples were looking for a victorious King Messiah figure who would defeat the Romans in battle. So Jesus talking about death and resurrection did not make sence. At the time of the crusifixtion their dreams were shatered. The confusion you talk about is very realistic and is in fact one of the reasons to see the gospel acounts as authentic as they don't put the subsiquent leaders of the church in a good light. However Jesus rose from the dead and the disciples were transformed by his appearences and teaching and subsiquently by the gift of the Holy Spirit. Acts chapter 1 3 After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. We too, today, can meet the risen Jesus and know his power to transform our muddled thinking by the power of the Holy Spirit.
  11. Yes the older English wording is a bit different. I can understand why, as a Muslim, you might say "Aren't in heaven" The idea of seeing God as Father is an amazing picture of acknowledging the community of believers "Our Father". And also of acknowledging the protection, care and provision that God gives. These characteristics of our loving God are so beautifully encapsulated in the phrase "Our Father"
  12. Thanks for these examples, They have some importantb requests. However, they are not in the Qur'an - do they have the authority of scripture? The prayer Jesus the Messiah taught is recorded in books which the Followers of Jesus see as having divine authority for life and conduct.
  13. Thanks for all your helpful comments and interpretaions. I woke up thinking if a visitor comes to our house in a car we invite them into the house we don't leave them in the car. Why didn't we invite God into our house? The most important visitor who could ever come.
  14. Yes the Hebrew Scriptures give great detail to this building and when Solomon finished building, at the dedication he prayed an amazing prayer see The Hebrew Bible 2 Chronicals chapter 6 18 ‘But will God really dwell on earth with humans? The heavens, even the highest heavens, cannot contain you. How much less this temple that I have built! 19 Yet, Lord my God, give attention to your servant’s prayer and his plea for mercy. Hear the cry and the prayer that your servant is praying in your presence. 20 May your eyes be open towards this temple day and night, this place of which you said you would put your Name there. May you hear the prayer your servant prays towards this place. 21 Hear the supplications of your servant and of your people Israel when they pray towards this place. Hear from heaven, your dwelling-place; and when you hear, forgive. Is this a prayer we can pray too? "Hear my prayer and my plea for mercy and when you hear forgive"
  15. God communicates - so his word would be coexistant with him. By his word he made everything that has been made. The Trustworthy Injil states John Chapter 1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. If all things were made by the word of God, that word must have pre-existed all of creation. God's word is the source of life - creative power - and as such can't be an inanimate book. Another reference in the Injil to the creation talks about the role Jesus the Messiah had in the creative act. Colossians chapter 1 15 The Son [Jesus the Messiah] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. The term 'Son' here has no sexual or procreative implications (God forbid!) and the idea of 'firstborn' is talking about pre-eminence. There is nothing in creation greater or more important than him. The word of God is living and active and can bring new life, spiritual life, even to us today!
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