Post details: "God isn't fair if He damns the good and saves the bad people?"

02/27/06

Permalink 05:29:37 pm, Categories: By Trent, GraceHead counseling, 1183 words   English (US)

"God isn't fair if He damns the good and saves the bad people?"

by Trent

Christianity inspires some tough questions:

One person is most famous for killing 33 young men and boys after homosexual relations, but in the last 30 seconds of his life becomes saved before being executed. Another man is an atheist, but dedicates his life to making the earth a better place for all peoples, and saves mother and 9 children from being hit by freight train, losing own life in process. How can the good person Go to hell and the other one be saved...how can Christianity be fair?

That is what I was asked. Here is how I answered:

[More:]

Common assertion: "God could love me, but then I might do something that gives God no other choice but to rightfully hate me. Likewise, God could hate me now, but I might do something that obligates God to love me."

The above sentiment is "common" among the religions of the world. Your question even follows the premise making it up to Christianity to defend why God may not favor the lovely, or He might disfavor the unlovely, but if I address this topic directly, then I am avoiding the deeper issue. There is a perspective from which these comparisons between lovely and unlovely, or between "good" and "bad" are made irrelevant.

The deepest comparison is between what is in "Alive with God" and what is not.

The key for religion is then to relatively do good and relatively avoid evil, if that sounds good to you, then triple your efforts and try to earn God's favor. However, the key to Christianity is to become Alive with God, and by His Spirit to arise from our current condition of death.

In the Bible we are confronted with the perspective that we are "dead" even though we seem to be alive ... and that only God has "real life." This is what Jesus was trying to explain in John Chapter 3:
(6)Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7You should not be surprised at my saying, 'You must be born again.' ... (16)"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not *perish* but have eternal *life*.

And again about "life and death" in Chapter 5:
(24)"I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has *crossed over from death to life*. (25)I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when *the dead* will hear the voice of the Son of God and those who hear *will live*. (26)For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son to have life in himself.

I could go on and on, but I'll leave you with only one other quote from John Chapter 6:
(47)I tell you the truth, he who believes has everlasting *life*. (48)I am the bread of life. (49)Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, *yet they died*. (50)But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and *not die*. ... (53)"I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, *you have no life in you.* (54)Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood *has eternal life*, and I will raise him up at the last day.

Now if the verdict is that we are dead, then what does it matter if we have a pungent death-stench or if we are perfumed? What is really a "bad" death, as opposed to a "good" death? Death is death.

It doesn't matter how bad we stinketh ... if we are dead, then the answer is no real solution other then the impartation of LIFE. So, cleaning up (or comparing) our dead corpses is simply an avoidance of the deeper issue. The corpse needs LIFE, not perfume.

Jesus even confronted the hyper-religious who were wanting to clean up their death stench through a bunch of pious acts of devotion as recorded by Matthew in Chapter 23:
(27)"Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men's bones and everything unclean.

I invite you to read the rest of Matthew chapter 23 to see the full context, and echoing statements.

So, we can go round and round talking about how relatively clean one dead man's tomb is to another dead man's tomb, that is a superficial argument. They are both full of dead men's bones.

We all need the same thing, and it isn't a superficial solution that can be accomplished by behavior modification. We are as flowers in a vase, detached from life. We bloom for a season, and soon ruin and decay and are among the perishing, but those that are taken from the vase and are attached to a vibrant living plant will soon spring to life, and their vital signs will slowing begin to match that of the plant's vital signs. In short, a grafted branch will become as alive as the vine. And that kind of connection to real life doesn't avoid the deeper issue, and it doesn't pathetically try to fool the Gardener by trying to paint up and perfume a rotting branch in a vase. The Gardener is no fool. No amount of perfume or paint will confuse Him about what is living and what is dying.

John 15:4-6
(4)Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me.
(5)"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. (6)If anyone does not remain in me, he is like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.

Lets go back to your question: "How can the good person Go to hell and the other one be saved...how can Christianity be fair?"

What difference could it possibly make whether we are "good" or "bad" by comparison? It isn't that any of us are more deserving of death in hell, for we are already dead, and the dead don't belong with God. But, this offer remains to all that are willing, and it doesn't matter if you are a stinky branch in the vase or a perfumed branch in the vase ... come as you are willing let yourself be born a second time by the Spirit of God. Take the Life of God that spilled forth from His Son, and be renewed and quickened from a current condition of death, for this blood can vitalize even the most withered among us.

Titus 3:5 he saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of his mercy. He saved us through the washing of rebirth and renewal by the Holy Spirit,

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Comments, Trackbacks, Pingbacks:

Comment from: Lisa [Visitor]
YESS!!!!
I wish I knew all of this when I was young. Alas--better late than never. Too long I had equated my relationship/salvation on the basis of "Good/bad" instead of "dead/alive". When our sight gets shifted from the incorrect foundation to the proper foundation 'alive/dead', it puts things in a whole new perspective, aye? I LOVE the comment, "Corpses need LIFE, not perfum" right on target!
Blessings
Lisa
Permalink 02/27/06 @ 19:31
Comment from: Reid [Visitor] · http://www.faithgambler.com
many people are going to be surprised when at the gates of heaven entering in, many people are veiled.
Permalink 02/27/06 @ 19:39
Comment from: Mrs Zeke [Visitor] · http://evolislovebackwards.blogspot.com/
Trent I know this to be true but I have to admit I have to fight my own daily demons telling me I have to earn it. I never will stand in front of anyone and judge there salvation it is not my place and I can at least be willing to say I don't get it.

My worry is always even though I use Grace everyday I don't want to abuse Grace. Accepting it is done I believe so I am accepted is wonderful but still I am to keep a watchful eye, not have my ears itched and so on....sigh maybe someday ill get a better balance its not easy for me.

Love now tomorrow is not promised to anyone
Permalink 02/27/06 @ 21:15
Comment from: jeff [Visitor] · http://demerging.com
Even Jesus wouldn't allow anyone to call him "good". What makes us think we have anything to do with it all???

Nicely done.
Permalink 02/27/06 @ 21:28
Comment from: Lori [Visitor]
Amen brother Trent..you hit the ball out of the park on that one... haha..

How lovely is Grace...

Lori
Permalink 02/27/06 @ 22:06
Comment from: Trent [Member] · http://www.GraceHead.com
Mrs. Zeke,

I know what you are saying. These are things that every GraceHead
grapples with.

I thought of two articles that might edify you:
License
to sin.

and
For
years, I had tried to earn my share of God's love.


Let me know what you think.

Ripening still,
Trent
Permalink 02/28/06 @ 11:14
Comment from: Pam [Member]
Trent,

Our natural condition is so much more dire than the common perception of being a bad person made good through faith in Christ. Being dead in our trespasses and sins calls for resurection which can't be achieved through human reform.

Pam
Permalink 03/03/06 @ 17:45

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