Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Just going by what I feel...

I had a very interesting discussion with someone recently about "spirituality". She told me that she formed her beliefs on the basis of what she feels.

I suggested to her this wasn't perhaps the most reliable way to go, because someone else could form their beliefs based on what they feel and arrive at a contradictory view. She told me that she would never say that such a person was wrong, but she just felt her view was right for her.

I told her that the Bible gives good evidence for us to take seriously what it says about what happens after death, and she immediately and dogmatically told me that there is no hell. I stopped her just to point out to her that it sounded like she was saying I was wrong, despite the fact that she had said she would never tell anyone that. She seemed a bit embarrassed at this and tried to back away from the charge that she had said I was wrong, and yet she would not back away from the belief there was no hell. I told her just to accept that she thought I was wrong - there is nothing wrong with that, it is not immoral to disagree with someone's point of view. I told her we both think that the other person's view is incorrect, but the point I made was that she holds her views based on her feelings, while I was actually presenting evidence for mine.

I spoke to her about the fulfilled prophecies of the Bible giving good evidence that the Bible is no ordinary book, and when it speaks about our future we ought to take it seriously. I spoke about the teachings of Jesus Christ and how He had proved His claims to deity by His life, by His teachings, and by His rising from the dead.

She is free to disagree with my point of view, but if she is going to reasonably disagree with it she has to address the evidence, or else present more compelling evidence for her point of view.

I told her that the message of the Gospel actually accounts for our intuitions and experience. We recognise a standard of righteousness, and we know we have fallen short. The Bible doesn't lower the standard or fudge on justice, but it provides a Substitute in the Son of God. He took the punishment and paid the penalty that our sins deserved and God's justice demanded, and when I turned to Him for salvation He gave me new life, just as the Bible promises, so I know in my own experience this is true. And if this is true, then it's not just "true for me". It is true for all - we have broken God's law, and Jesus Christ is the only way a righteous God can accept guilty criminals like us.