reply to post by sacgamer25
Unless I try harder, I see nothing wrong with your logic. A very careful, thoughtful and open read of the New Testament gives a better understanding
for those willing to take the time. The ONLY way to Heaven, and path to a better life while waiting, however, is a very vivid experience with a very
literal personage known as Jesus, who is indeed quite alive and available for those who can see through to it, and that's what Jesus told Nicodemus,
you must be born again to see the Kingdom Of God. But I'm not quick to judge those who haven't had the profound experience that some of us have had,
either. God has a different way and different time for each of us.
My experience brought me to the point of being born again, but it took a while. My life was such a mess, and I had nowhere to turn, that I shook my
fist and challenged God. I said I wanted a personal visit, not Bible studies with moldy books. And then, being a bit of smart alec, said that to prove
that I hadn't had a dream, would He leave some candy bars on my nightstand.
Well, I can tell you that God wasn't really thrilled about having a punk like me talk to Him like that, and for some time I really suffered, I mean
really suffered. But then while reading a book about how to get God's attention, more specifically an in depth discussion about the Beautitudes
(Matthew 5, first several verses), I gradually began to strengthen my appreciation for Jesus and the plan of salvation. But by then my strength had
withered so badly that I could hardly walk, and one day collapsed on the bed. At that point, something of immense power, or rather somebody, jumped
off the nightstand, hovered over me, and said "Indescribably Delicious" - and I was at the same time overcome with the most indescribable and
delicious feeling. This immense power, or as I soon understood was the Holy Spirit," picked me up and I was then saturated with the most intense
quality of mercy that I could have never imagined, and also swept up and taken with great force to Jesus, though at the time hadn't a clue as to what
was going on. As I approached the 2nd major stop on this journey, another immense power saturated me with a welcoming, cosmic embrace while speaking
the words "Union Of All Things." These were the words, but this was NOT just anything or anybody, this was the spirit of Jesus Christ, no question
about that whatsoever. Overhead was a simple crown of gold, ethereal gold, but far more real and vivid than physical gold, plus it being made of the
very royal character of Jesus Himself, that's right, all things in the spirit world of the Kingdom is made of the very presence of God.
I stopped for a short while under the crown, and was bathed in sparkling jewels of kindness. Then, suddenly, I was thrust into such brilliant light
that I couldn't see at first, like walking into bright sun from a dark room. In a short while, I could tell that I was being carried aloft at great
speed and could soon make out a blue ribbon in the distance. Soon, I could see that this was a river, and I was briefly slowed and turned towards it
as if blown by a wind, but this wind was waves of extreme love of such grand and glorious character that you cannot explain in any wordly terms. I was
then taken closer to the river, which then spoke specifically to me, the River Of Life, and you could feel life flowing from the river with these
words. On either side were huge canyon walls, and as I was taken down the river, was increasingly overtaken with exquisite ecstasy. When approaching a
bend in the river, the feelings were so overwhelming that it seemed impossible to face the increasingly sense of delight and peace. But before
rounding the bend, pop, it all went off like a TV set. I was next only aware that the first character that had swept off the nightstand was now
carrying me in His arms, actually, rocking me as if I were a baby. The spirit had also assumed a sort of amorphous but vaguely distinct shape of a
large man with a huge smile on His face as He rocked me to and fro.
Well, so, of course, I was a bit upended by this experience, to say the least, but the rest of the world hadn't seemed to notice, and even many
"Christians" didn't believe it. It was particularly non convincing in many churches, because they take certain Bible passages to mean that you
cannot be born again unless you speak in tongues, which I never have in the 31 years since then. Not every church has such odd hangups, though, many
of them are made up of people who have all had similar experiences and have no trouble recognizing that I am, like them, indeed, born again.
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, you MUST be born again to see the Kingdom of God." Jesus to Nicodemus, asking how a person could get to Heaven.