That was absolutely amazing, Shelby. Enjoyed it thoroughly.
Glad to have obliged, dear Nick (again, the greatest of love and peace to you, dear one!).
It is just so difficult for me to consider evidence I cannot perceive.
I totally understand that and I believe it safe to say, dear tec (the greatest of love and peace to you, as well, dear one!) does, too!
Is it your fault? No, I suppose not, but you should be able to comprehend the conundrum it presents.
Dear one, WE understand YOUR conundrum; we have been there. Just like YOU (rather, many of those who disbelieve as you do) SHOULD be able to understand those who still "believe" in the manner you once did, since you were once there. But I don't find that same patience and tolerance. Indeed, I seem to see more lack of tolerance... and inability to "suffer fools" (although most who are this way were once such fools, themselves).
Why is that, exactly? Wouldn't it be quite hypocritical of me to either have once not believed... or thought I believed but based on blind faith... to now know what I know and then take issue with you for not being where I am? Really, wouldn't love simply prompt me to share what I do now know... while waiting patiently FOR you to get it... while not judging or loving you less if you can't/don't? Sure, I want you to know/see/hear what I do; I want EVERYONE to know/see/hear. But that's not up to me... anymore than it's up to disbelievers to MAKE believers see/get what THEY now get.
Like trying to describe the sunset to a blind person, perhaps.
I would disagree on the basis that at least a blind person would entertain that there IS a sunset... and at least try to IMAGINE it. Sure, she may not see it exactly as I do (then, again, she may... especially if she had SOME sight previous to becoming blind). But if the blind person says to you, "There is NO sunset because I'VE never seen one...", well, what can you do with that??
Or the fourth dimension to someone who can perceive only three.
Again, if the person perceiving only three will not even entertain the possibility that there is fourth... and that it must be seen differently than the other three... the likelihood that he WOULD see the fourth... even if it was right in front of his face... is slim to none.
I am left with two possibilities. Either I just don't have the ability to perceive the things you do, or perhaps the things you perceive don't exist. Stalemate.
No stalemate, unless you want it to be, dear one. Because the difference between your thinking and, say, mine... is that I realized I had to believe I COULD have such an ability, even if I didn't to start with. Like basketball - I may not have the ability to dunk, YET... but I at least have to believe I can OBTAIN it... in order to ever do so. Same thing with flying: true, I may not be able to fly on my own (with this body), but there is now a means for this BODY to fly, yes? What if folks had stuck with the notion that man can NEVER fly... in ANY manner? Once you rule out the POSSIBILITY... you might as well go and sit down and leave off whatever it is you THOUGHT possible.
Anyway, basically I'm reading into your post that at least parts of the Bible are, indeed, not an accurate source of information for one to know God and there are other apocryphal works that need to be considered in addition to the parts of the Bible that are ok.
That's not accurate, dear Nick... and I have to say that I'm surprised. Because it tells me that you still don't quite get it: there is only ONE accurate Source of information to know God: His Son, the Holy One of Israel, JAHESHUA, the Chosen One of JAH. ONLY him. However, there is information in the Bible that is accurate ABOUT these two... as well as a whole lot that is NOT accurate... and information in other writings, including the current Apophrycal works... and other writings that have not even been found, yet... or, while perhaps found, not revealed to the world at large.
But it is all irrelevant. It can only tell you ABOUT them... and even then it's limited, if not inaccurate. It can not help you KNOW them... which should be the goal. I have found, though, that while a whole lot of people SAY they want to know God/Christ... when it all comes down... they don't. Not really. They want to SAY they know God/Christ. Meaning, they want to know ABOUT them. But actually getting to KNOW them? Uh-uh. I cannot tell you how many people have posted/PM'd, "Okay, Shelby, how can I do this?"... only to beg off when I respond and say, "Here's what you do; you can do this, anyone can - even call me, here's my number, I'll help if you need it, but you really don't need me..." Silence. Most stop posting on the board altogether.
Also that one who believes as you and Tammy do is free to hear what he wishes and refrain from hearing what he wishes not to.
Nope, you got that one backward, too, dear one: anyone who believes/disbelieves as YOU do... is free to hear... or refrain... what we are sharing on these matters. Unlike religion... we have no "penalty" proclamations to share. The GOOD news... doesn't include proclamations of doom, gloom, and destruction. It is merely a message regarding an OPEN Door... that ANYONE who WISHES... can enter through... and receive life. Will some receive death/destruction? Yes. But who that IS... is NOT for us to say, at all. God is righteous, so we trust that WHOMEVER it ends up being, everyone who is NOT a part of that will rejoice and be glad. Unfortunately, today, for some "christians", it's homosexuals, Muslims, communists, even some minorities. For some Muslims, it's the same, except for "christians" vs. them. Everybody has "somebody" they want to "go."
Us? We would rather everyone just woke the heck up... learned the law of the NEW Covenant, which is love... EVEN of one's enemies. Ever gonna happen? We believe not so much. Because there are more "influences" pitting man against man than religion. Many more... and some not even of the physical world.
It sounds a little like cafeteria Christianity except that you get to fill your tray with the food from other restaurants too.
Because you have misunderstood me, dear one. "Cafeteria", yes, if you lack faith so as to need the Bible, writings, etc. But isn't that what gets most of those who claim to follow God, Christ, etc., in trouble? Surely, you know the atrocities committed in the name of "God" and "Jesus"... because of what either is... or people claim is... written "in the Bible", yes? The TRUTH, however, is that there is only ONE table to eat from... and ONE "dish": Christ is that table... and his flesh and blood that dish. TRUE food... and TRUE drink. Eating from the Tree... of Life.
I do get the distinction that the Bible is a volume of books rather than just one, but the central characters are all pretty much connected.
Okay, so back to my library analogy: you're in the "fishing" section of the "sports" section. Central theme (fishing)... but you don't need to read every book. Do you?
As a body of technical writings it is not something to which I would refer if I had a question.
WONDERFUL!! It SHOULDN'T be what you refer to! Not as to God and the technicalities related to Him, at least. Again, the BEST Source for that... is Christ!
But I do prefer steelhead to bass and bass to tuna, now that you mention it.
Okay, see? So, in that section you would read the books that pertain to catching steelhead, yes? Of course, since you also prefer bass, you might peruse some of those, as well. But the bass books aren't going to give you the DETAIL you need as to catching steelhead. Right? Even so... wouldn't you get even more/better info from the author? Of course, you would. But even better than the author... what about the SUBJECT of the particular book? Wouldn't he/she be able to give you the BEST information? (You know, if steelhead could speak, I mean - LOLOLOL! "Hey, Steelie, so what's the BEST way for a guy like me to catch one 'o youse? Do youse like worms? Are are youse guys more into sardines?")
I think I'll have to reread your post tomorrow when I'm not so knackered.
Knackered? You read my post when you were knackered?!! Well! I don't know whether to be insulted... or grateful! LOLOLOL! (BTW - what's "knackered"? )
It is non-addictive (although it can be habit forming in those who are not disciplined, so that doesn't apply to you) has no known lethal dose and is reported to produce satisfactory results in terminal cancer patients. If I was in chronic pain I would at least try it.
Well, since I consider you a straight-up kind of guy... with a good head on his shoulders... I will certainly take that under advisement, dear one - LOLOLOL!
Good day... and, again, peace to you, my dear!
YOUR servant and a slave of Christ,