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Thread: The "Gift"

  1. #1
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    Default The "Gift"

    I don't think I'm arguing semantics if I point out that God is not giving a gift to people on Earth.

    As Wild Rose pointed out in a different post, and I paraphrase - a gift is something you don't have a right to. You didn't earn it or merit it, so you don't deserve it. It's given freely by ...well, whoever gives out gifts. That's what makes it a gift.

    God is NOT giving a gift.

    What he gives - eternal life supposedly - has conditions.

    If you accept his love, you get eternal life. If you don't accept his love, you don't get eternal life.

    Therefore, it's not a gift. You have to do something to merit this eternal life. God points out what you need to do - at the very least accept Christ as your savior, and presumably follow the Ten Commandments - even though they were given to the Jews.

    Therefore, since God is not giving you a "gift" but a reward - you either merit that reward or you don't and if you continue to try to "walk with God", even if you stumble every now and then, you merit his blessings.

    If you don't walk with God then you don't merit his blessings, even though you seem to receive them.

    Therefore, again, I exhort Christians to "think positive! " "Thank you, Lord, for all your blessings. I'll do my best to merit them." That's so much more positive and uplifting than "well, gee, God, thanks for this but I'm such scum I wonder why you even bother with me." That's got to be so tiring for Him to hear... (At least, one would hope so!)
    "Let joy and innocence prevail."

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  3. #2
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    You make a good point. This is one of the reasons I don't buy into the idea of eternal salvation granted before judgement.
    .

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  5. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex McAlpine View Post
    I don't think I'm arguing semantics if I point out that God is not giving a gift to people on Earth.

    As Wild Rose pointed out in a different post, and I paraphrase - a gift is something you don't have a right to. You didn't earn it or merit it, so you don't deserve it. It's given freely by ...well, whoever gives out gifts. That's what makes it a gift.

    God is NOT giving a gift.

    What he gives - eternal life supposedly - has conditions.

    If you accept his love, you get eternal life. If you don't accept his love, you don't get eternal life.

    Therefore, it's not a gift. You have to do something to merit this eternal life. God points out what you need to do - at the very least accept Christ as your savior, and presumably follow the Ten Commandments - even though they were given to the Jews.

    Therefore, since God is not giving you a "gift" but a reward - you either merit that reward or you don't and if you continue to try to "walk with God", even if you stumble every now and then, you merit his blessings.

    If you don't walk with God then you don't merit his blessings, even though you seem to receive them.

    Therefore, again, I exhort Christians to "think positive! " "Thank you, Lord, for all your blessings. I'll do my best to merit them." That's so much more positive and uplifting than "well, gee, God, thanks for this but I'm such scum I wonder why you even bother with me." That's got to be so tiring for Him to hear... (At least, one would hope so!)
    Another slight misunderstanding on your part.

    The Gift is the opportunity to make that choice. Without the willing sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ not one person would be redeemed from death, hence no choice. With His sacrifice we as humans can now choose to stay in the state of death (Death in Spiritual terms means Separated from God) or we can choose Life. That is the Gift the ability to make the choice and the only Sinless sacrifice that could be made to pay the redemptive price was Jesus Christ.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cbut1 View Post
    Another slight misunderstanding on your part.

    The Gift is the opportunity to make that choice. Without the willing sacrifice of the Lord Jesus Christ not one person would be redeemed from death, hence no choice. With His sacrifice we as humans can now choose to stay in the state of death (Death in Spiritual terms means Separated from God) or we can choose Life. That is the Gift the ability to make the choice and the only Sinless sacrifice that could be made to pay the redemptive price was Jesus Christ.
    Choice was a key long before Jesus lived. In Deuteronomy we read:

    I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live...

    Jews have always insisted that scripture and law have always been about how to live this life. We hear this in Jesus' words as well--that he came so that we may have a more abundant life now. This life is the gift--it's not about waiting for some future gift. Scripture, and Jesus himself simply offer instruction on how to use this gift to get the most out of it.

    I have books on how to get the best use out of my cell phone. Yet, I do not use my phone to its greatest potential. It is good to reflect, sometimes, on whether the gift of life is being used to its greatest potential.




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  9. #5

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    If Deuteronomy 8, and Luke 14 mean anything to us, it us that Pride is a "deadly sin," and I believe God wants us to be humble.

    The instant I say
    - "I have earned this," or
    - "I deserve this,"
    I am also saying, however politely,
    - "I understand God," &
    - "Now I have backed Him into a corner. By my actions I have forced Him to give me what I want."

    I've been sharing more openly sharing from my story recently and will continue for now.

    What the HELL did I do to deserve God's gifts? Others may deserve them. I do not.

    Jeff is a man (If you don't already know, I'm not gonna tell you.) I am an undeserving wretch trying every day to earn my gifts.

    I come from a very strong traditional nuclear family. In 2008, while I was married, in my 40's and raising an adolescent son, my mother died of cancer. Then my brother died of Huntington's. Then my sister, (Huntington's). Then my sister (in-law) blew her face off with a shot gun, then my father was accused of a heinous crime and hung himself.

    I am alive.
    They are dead.
    My life is a gift.
    I did not earn it, not yet anyway.

    Weaker, more self-centered and more self-pitying than God intended, I was strong on the outside but crushed on the inside. (Irish). As such I became homelessly addicted to alcohol, my brother, the only other survivor from my childhood family, was hopelessly addicted to pain-killers.

    A better man would have recognized the havoc his addiction is causing and sought help. But I am an oppositional defiant type (Irish) and I stopped seeking help the instant any one said I need it.

    * Did I mention I am an undeserving wretch?

    When I finally lost everything, wife, son, house, car and any household items I could pawn or lose in an unpaid storage unit, I went to detox/treatment.

    There were 7 people in my detox unit. Six are dead or relapsed. I have been giving a gift. My 'treatment group' had 13 people. Ten are dead or relapsed.

    Steve is dead. Chris is dead. Jim is dead. Mark is living in an ally. Nate and Autumn are living in their car. Kim is selling her body on a street corner in Miami.

    I don't deserve it.
    I am not a better person than they are.
    I am not less of an addict than they are.
    My life is a gift.
    My sobriety is a gift.

    Deserve it? Earn it? I'm trying to earn it. Trying to do stuff for me sure didn't work out so well.
    Where in the heck am I?

    Maybe I should have asked for directions.

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  11. #6

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    In the year 2000, Mel Gibson released "The Patriot." Near the middle of the film two black men are marching down a road among a. column of American patriots.

    One of them says to the other "My master says if I fight in this war, when it's over, he'll give me my freedom."

    The other one responds with a slight scoff, "Boy. Whatcha gonna do with your freedom?"
    Where in the heck am I?

    Maybe I should have asked for directions.

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  13. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaius View Post
    If Deuteronomy 8, and Luke 14 mean anything to us, it us that Pride is a "deadly sin," and I believe God wants us to be humble.

    The instant I say
    - "I have earned this," or
    - "I deserve this,"
    I am also saying, however politely,
    - "I understand God," &
    - "Now I have backed Him into a corner. By my actions I have forced Him to give me what I want."

    I've been sharing more openly sharing from my story recently and will continue for now.

    What the HELL did I do to deserve God's gifts? Others may deserve them. I do not.

    Jeff is a man (If you don't already know, I'm not gonna tell you.) I am an undeserving wretch trying every day to earn my gifts.

    I come from a very strong traditional nuclear family. In 2008, while I was married, in my 40's and raising an adolescent son, my mother died of cancer. Then my brother died of Huntington's. Then my sister, (Huntington's). Then my sister (in-law) blew her face off with a shot gun, then my father was accused of a heinous crime and hung himself.

    I am alive.
    They are dead.
    My life is a gift.
    I did not earn it, not yet anyway.

    Weaker, more self-centered and more self-pitying than God intended, I was strong on the outside but crushed on the inside. (Irish). As such I became homelessly addicted to alcohol, my brother, the only other survivor from my childhood family, was hopelessly addicted to pain-killers.

    A better man would have recognized the havoc his addiction is causing and sought help. But I am an oppositional defiant type (Irish) and I stopped seeking help the instant any one said I need it.

    * Did I mention I am an undeserving wretch?

    When I finally lost everything, wife, son, house, car and any household items I could pawn or lose in an unpaid storage unit, I went to detox/treatment.

    There were 7 people in my detox unit. Six are dead or relapsed. I have been giving a gift. My 'treatment group' had 13 people. Ten are dead or relapsed.

    Steve is dead. Chris is dead. Jim is dead. Mark is living in an ally. Nate and Autumn are living in their car. Kim is selling her body on a street corner in Miami.

    I don't deserve it.
    I am not a better person than they are.
    I am not less of an addict than they are.
    My life is a gift.
    My sobriety is a gift.

    Deserve it? Earn it? I'm trying to earn it. Trying to do stuff for me sure didn't work out so well.
    I appreciate this. Much of what I see is the way God can still work to bring about goodness when there appears there is none to be had.




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  15. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Meriweather View Post
    I appreciate this. Much of what I see is the way God can still work to bring about goodness when there appears there is none to be had.
    Thank you.

    🎶 Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound,
    that saved a wretch like me . . . 🎶

    There is no medical formula or psychological therapy that distinguishes me from those dead.
    I am not a better person than they.
    I am not less of an addict.
    I didn't want it more, understand it better, read harder, pray harder etc. etc..

    I sat in the same therapy sessions in the seat next to them. We prayed TOGETHER.

    There is not a single "All ya gotta do is . . ." that explains why I am alive, have my wits and do not crave a drink today.

    I didn't have more faith, nor do better works. I am not better than they are, am am not being rewarded. I am not more deserving.

    If I were, I would today be telling people "Do this and you will get that. I am deserving. Be deserving and you will get it too."

    I'd be shouting the method from the rooftops!

    Maybe God has something in store for me. Maybe I'm just one more pimple and He didn't bother to end me.

    Best I can do is go to meetings and share my story with others, and, from time to time, put myself at risk and share it 'in public' like this as well.

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  17. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Meriweather View Post
    Choice was a key long before Jesus lived. In Deuteronomy we read:

    I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live...

    Jews have always insisted that scripture and law have always been about how to live this life. We hear this in Jesus' words as well--that he came so that we may have a more abundant life now. This life is the gift--it's not about waiting for some future gift. Scripture, and Jesus himself simply offer instruction on how to use this gift to get the most out of it.

    I have books on how to get the best use out of my cell phone. Yet, I do not use my phone to its greatest potential. It is good to reflect, sometimes, on whether the gift of life is being used to its greatest potential.
    Aww but this is where the Hebrews (not all) also made the mistake. The Messiah already was, "From the Foundation of the world" and was already presented to them through the Law.

    The Lord said to the Rich young ruler that asked what must I do to be saved; keep the Commandments (the Law), Which the law reflects the righteousness of the Lord, the Purity of the Lord, the Sacrifice of the Lord. The Hebrews were by Faith choosing life through obedience to the Law/the Messiah.

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