Nice thesis, great ideas. One thing you should be aware of, though. The Old Testament does not contain a hell concept. There's hint of that kind of thinking in the book of Daniel, perhaps the last Old Testament book written. But the full doctrine of hell emerges in the New Testament with Jesus being the one to first deliver the teachings. Even the turn-your-other-cheek Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapters 5-7 contains several disturbing hell verses. Yes, there are many verses in the New Testament that imply all are saved in the end (though many mainstream Christians will deny this), but there are equally many that say numerous if not most people will be damned. It's contradictory, and one simply has to pick and choose. I think we should pick and choose the kind and generous stuff and disregard the punitive stuff, but many Christians see that approach as misguided if not downright evil.
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thanks for your comments and kind words and clarifications... w
In the old testament rules were set up for our own protection. The 10 commandments were given to try to live by, but man had to realize that he couldn't...therefore he needed GOD, his creator. We were never created to do life alone.
You talk of God's jealousy, judgement, and wrath, which are all reflected in the Old Testament-but you forgot to mention the God of grace who used sinful people, like David to accomplish his works over and over again-when they turned to him. God is like we are to our children. We set guidelines, but our emotions are a mess as our children make decisions-and we hope they make the right ones. As always-there are consequences to our bad decisions. God tells us how to live life...we have to choose which path we'll take. He didn't make us robots.
The God of the new testament is the same as the God of the old. The new covenant was created once Christ died and arose. No more blood had to be shed..no more animal sacrifices. Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice who walked the earth reflecting his father's personality. We are able to SEE God through Jesus' ways. He never changed. The rules are the same-except for the foods. I believe he was trying to keep HIS people healthy and as time went on, ways to "keep" food and prepare it changed. Acceptance was always God's way of loving people-but he loved the sinner, not the sin.
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