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    World Religion & Speculative Theology - Thread: How can an unbeliever please God?

    1. #11
      Albion's Avatar
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      Quote Originally Posted by Arsenios View Post
      I simply went after evils in my own soul that had no business being there...

      THAT is quintessential repentance, it turns out...

      Big surprise for me too... An atheist...

      Arsenios
      Obviously you were not actually an atheist.

    2. Likes Lämmchen, Josiah, Arsenios liked this post
    3. #12
      MennoSota is offline Expert Member
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      Quote Originally Posted by Albion View Post
      Obviously you were not actually an atheist.
      Yes, I question this as well. No atheist would believe they have a soul or that they could exorcise something that is written into their gene code by nature itself. An honest and truly thinking atheist would argue that the entire Universe is determined by nature and nature's function. We act as we do because it is programmed by nature for us to act exactly that way.

    4. #13
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      Quote Originally Posted by TurtleHare View Post
      The Justification thread got so long that I did not want my question to get lost in the mess of things and here we can talk about a thing that was brought up and is important and yet it does not fit with what I was taught. How can an unbeliever please God is my question and it is from that thread where Arsenios said he repented for years as an atheist and that it justified him. How is that even possible?

      God flatly states the unbeliever CANNOT. "Without faith, it is IMPOSSIBLE to please God." Anything unclear there? One without spiritual life ergo can't do anything spiritual.


      Now, theologicans speak of CIVIL righteousness. Luther spoke much of this, appropriately praising this. ALL are capable of doing relative good to one's neighbor.... and being praiseworthy (including by God) for such. These may be acts VOID of faith, the Holy Spirit and justification - but still of value in view of our fellow human beings. I have a Buddhist friend who does MUCH good for others - and what is good is good. Relatively speaking. BEFORE MAN.


      But BEFORE GOD, anything "good" to HIM must be from faith..... and must flow from LIFE..... and is empowered and directed by the Holy Spirit. It is impossible for one without spiritual life to do anything spiritual. It is impossible for one without faith to do anything with faith. It is impossible for one to be directed and empowered by the Holy Spirit without the Holy Spirit. Before humans, a DOG can do a good work (and they often do - even saving people from death) but that's not a good work unto God; it is fruitful to man but it is NOT a good work or pleasing unto God. "It is IMPOSSIBLE to please God without faith." For centuries (long before the Reformation) Christians made this distinction between civil and religious righteousness - "good" before man and "good" before God. It is an important distinction.... if for no other reason, it makes Christianity true, that even the Pharisee (who was as good in the civil sense as likely possible) is still a DEAD man needing salvation....



      - Josiah




      .
      Last edited by Josiah; 06-04-2018 at 10:10 AM.
      We are justified by works - just not our own.

    5. #14
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      Quote Originally Posted by TurtleHare View Post
      The Justification thread got so long that I did not want my question to get lost in the mess of things and here we can talk about a thing that was brought up and is important and yet it does not fit with what I was taught. How can an unbeliever please God is my question and it is from that thread where Arsenios said he repented for years as an atheist and that it justified him. How is that even possible?
      The only possible way an unbeliever can please God would for the unbeliever to become a believer by accepting the sacrifice of Christ and accepting His righteousness.


      Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
      "Therefore, having been justified by faith, [a]we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ Romans 5:1

    6. #15
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      Repentance (turning away from what one's knows is evil/ wrong in their own life) is indeed possible prior to the reception of faith in GOD.

      what Arseneos wrote is spot on with my own experience.

      No one said they repented from unbelief in GOD as an atheist. Repent means stop or turn away from; not begin to believe in GOD.

      Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
      Faith in selfless Unity for Good.

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    8. #16
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      Quote Originally Posted by popsthebuilder View Post
      Repentance (turning away from what one's knows is evil/ wrong in their own life) is indeed possible prior to the reception of faith in GOD.

      what Arseneos wrote is spot on with my own experience.

      No one said they repented from unbelief in GOD as an atheist. Repent means stop or turn away from; not begin to believe in GOD.

      Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
      Repentance is not JUST a turning away from sinful things. It includes turning TO God. What are you turning away from if not TO God? If you're turning from sin you're turning to something holy. Men without faith cannot do that. They can stop sinning but they aren't really turning are they? Without God they can't be holy. They are still sinful. Without faith in God anything they do is not considered good as has been pointed out a few times here.
      "Christianity does not require more work but more trust." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "Bearing fruit does not make you a branch. A branch is a branch because it grows from the vine." Pr. Jonathan Fisk
      "A Christian's life is not defined by what the Christian does. It is defined by Christ and what He has done for us." Pr. Rolf David Preus

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    10. #17
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      Repentance is turning from a thing....not towards a thing.

      One cannot turn towards GOD without being found of GOD.

      one cannot magically go from atheism to theism on a whim. One must be convinced of GOD. This comes after sincere attempted repentance and is of GOD alone, not of the person who just chooses to believe one day.

      Quote Originally Posted by Lämmchen View Post
      Repentance is not JUST a turning away from sinful things. It includes turning TO God. What are you turning away from if not TO God?
      Sent from my Moto G (5) Plus using Tapatalk
      Faith in selfless Unity for Good.

    11. #18
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      The word repentance means to change your mind from Greek μετάνοια
      "Therefore, having been justified by faith, [a]we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ Romans 5:1

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    13. #19
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      Quote Originally Posted by RichWh1 View Post
      The word repentance means to change your mind from Greek μετάνοια
      this, it is turning away from not turning to
      Isaiah 40:31

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    15. #20
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      I suggest people read about the Great Thessalonian Revival and the repentance of turning from idols to God.
      1 Thessalonians 1
      [9]for they keep talking about the wonderful welcome you gave us and how you turned away from idols to serve the living and true God.

      Repentance: Turning away from to go toward God.

      God becomes our love, our passion, our greatest joy.

    16. Likes RichWh1 liked this post

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