Tuesday, October 28, 2008

tiny toes

There was frost on the windshield this morning, and we had light snow flurries yesterday. It is rather nippy outside right now, so I went back to some pictures from a hot July afternoon. This scrumptious munchkin is pure joy to his Uncle Craver. I don't think we figured out exactly what he was saying, but I DO remember that he said it with conviction. The lad knows what he wants... Like all of us though, that doesn't automatically mean he always knows what he needs. And though he may ask questions, he may not always ask the right questions.

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Speaking of questions, last night a friend told me about a question somebody was struggling with. "Why does a good God make anybody go to hell?" My buddy felt (and I agree) that the wrong question was being asked. We should be asking instead, "Since God is holy and we are not (except Christ alone), why would a good God allow anybody at all to go to heaven?" And yet He does; God provided a way by sending His own Son.

And .

We grownups can be complicated and overly skeptical sometimes, can't we? We need the faith of a child. A faith that does not criticize, judge and condemn his caretaker and provider, but completely trusts. A faith that says, "I may not understand everything about you, but I need you and can't survive without you."

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I feel so much warmer now. :-)

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10 comments:

just journaling said...

"Why does a good God make anybody go to hell?"
Sounds like a question a child would ask. I assume an adult had asked this particular question...? Apparently, he or she is not a believer or the question would not have been asked in such a way. How would you have answered this struggling person if you were in their presence, Craver?

Shoebee said...

I feel warmer now too. It is such a shame that we adults loose our innocence.

Craver Vii said...

(Just Journaling, it was someone from another church who asked the question, and I think it was somebody who already believed, but didn't know how to answer the objection.)

But I have been asked this question before, and just as I said, I usually start out by turning it right-side-up and asking, "How does a God who is good allow anybody at all to go to heaven?" My question suggests that the default position for humanity is the bleakest of situations. And it should be, because salvation is impossible, if it is up to man. The good news is that once we get a grasp of our predicament, he doesn't leave us there, condemned for eternity... God Himself paid the price through the blood of His son Jesus... that whoever believes on Him would be brought into a right relationship with Him. I'll put it this way: we won't ask for a doctor until we're ready to admit that there's something wrong with us.

The good news about Jesus is not all cotton candy sweetness, it's a big deal... real big. You know, I did not weep at first, on the day I believed, but since then, there have been many occasions where the appreciation of the event was too big for my heart to contain, and the emotion forced it's way out through tear ducts.

The better we understand the chasm that separates us from God, the more we appreciate the meaning of "grace." And we receive it by simple faith. Total, no strings attached, 100% complete trust... like a child.

Jules~ said...

The toddler qualm is so cute. I too get mixed up between my wants and needs.

I like the second part of your post too. This is a question worth struggling over and it is actually the question that brought me to God in the first place.
It has taken me quite a while to wrap my brain and heart around this concept but I understand so much more now than I used to.
It is not God's desire to make anyone go to hell. It breaks His heart and He grieves whenever someone goes to hell. People go to hell because of their craving need for independence, control, and individuality. When these things are catered to then God is pushed away and God is rejected.

Have you by any chance ever read The Shack by William Young?

Craver Vii said...

Haven't read that book Jules~, and I probably won't. But I wouldn't mind hearing your take on it if you've read it.

Kudos! You touched on something important and I want to point that out. It is not God's desire to send people to hell. That is so right. Just because He predestines some to salvation, does not automatically mean that he predestines the rest to condemnation. (That's called "double-predestination.") All fall short; nobody deserves heaven. God doesn't have to save anybody, and it is pure grace that he saves some.

To illustrate the point regarding double-predestination, imagine a fireman being tried for murder because he saved some people from a burning building, and the families of the unfortunate victims saying he chose to let them die by virtue of the fact that he chose others to live. That's silly!

mommanator said...

dont ya know he is saying HEY YOU GUYS MY TOES ARE GETTING SANDY!

mommanator said...

how you mire 2 thoughts is good craver!

Shammickite said...

So it's a little chilly at Chez Craver? I think it's pretty cold at home in Ontario too, but here we are at the beach in Florida, where it's supposed to be warm and sunny.... but obviously something is wrong and it's been record breaking cold temps for the past 3 nights. Warmer weather is forecast for next week.... gotta love that sand and sunshine!
And I don't think God whoever she is would make anybody do anything or go anywhere especially something as nasty as go to hell, we all have our own free will and we make our own choices where to go. perhaps I'm classed as a non believer... and what is a believer anyway?

Shiloh Guy said...

CraveMeister,

On Sunday nights our small group is going through a series of videos on "Dog and Cat Theology." Have you heard of it? It's based on kind of a joke. Cats: (no offense intended to Jazzy) You feed them, provide them with kitty litter and catnip, give them a nice place to sleep, shelter them, and caress them (when they deign to hang around you). When you come home from work the cat just might approach you for a second and maybe rub against your leg. The cat looks at all this and says, "Wow! You do so much for me and make me so happy, I must be God!" Dogs: When you come home from work they jump up and down and bark and wag their tails and run around you. You feed them, clean up after them, give them a place to sleep, shelter them, pet them, and they say, "Wow! You do so much for me and make me so happy, you must be God!"

The premise is obvious. Our American churches are full of "cat" Christians and "cat" theology.

Craver Vii said...

Thanks 2x Mommanator.

Shammy, I consider you a dear, sweet friend. I hold you in high regard for your talent. But I would also urge you to press on, considering things pertaining to God, and the ramifications of those beliefs. I wish only the best for you.

Shiloh Guy, would you send me email about the small group curriculum? We are just beginning a new study. We will be going through Packer's Knowing God with a study guide. It will be something like 20 weeks. Previously, we did Sproul's Systematic Theology and liked it a lot. There were a couple things we did since then that weren't received as favorably as those two.