Jehovah`s Witness/Experience of God
Im asking this, because I have seen many christians saying that the experience of Father and Son, will be available only "after death" or in the "Second Coming/Presence and generally not in the present state. Also Jesus says to Thomas, "Thomas you saw me and you believed, blessed those who didnt see and believed".
So, are Christians walking only by faith and study of Scriptures, without any communication with God? Is faith without experience enough? And how can someone have a personal relationship with Jesus, if he hasnt met Him?
ANSWER: Greetings from halfway around the world,
These are really great questions, and I will do my best to answer them from a mainstream Christian perspective. As far as experiencing the Father and Son, I believe that we experience them both in our present and future states, although in very different ways. It concerns me that there are Christians who say they don't experience God in their present state, because I absolutely believe that true Christians experience God.
How do they experience Him? One way that all true Christians experience God is by having the old removed and the new put on (2 Cor. 5:17; Eph. 4:22-24). This is a powerful experience for those who have done so. True Christians experience Christ because He lives in them (Gal. 2:20). We also experience God through answered prayers. There are also many other individual ways that people experience God such as healing, an intervention of some kind, daily guidance through the Holy Spirit, etc.
We can have a personal relationship with Jesus without seeing (or meeting) him. This, in part, is what Jesus was referring to when He made that comment to Thomas. 1 John 1:3 says that the fellowship is with the Father AND the Son. How do we fellowship with the Father and the Son? We simply talk to them. In John 14:14, Jesus says that we can ask Him anything in His name. Most importantly, we allow Christ, who is in us, to determine our course of action. We submit ourselves to the will of God.
Paul spells out what is "enough" in Gal. 2:16. We are justified by faith in Christ. If you place this within the entire context of the Bible, Christ lives in true Christians. The Christian is justified by their faith in Christ. Their faith in Christ results in taking off of the old and putting on the new. Their becoming a "new creation" results in their works.
So, true Christians will demonstrate works BECAUSE they have been made a new creation BECAUSE Christ dwells in them BECAUSE of their faith in Christ. True Christians realize that they have already been justified. The verdict has already been made in their favor. 1 John 5:13 says that we can KNOW that we have eternal life. There is a great freedom in this knowledge.
The type of experience with God that we have after this life will be very different, and frankly much better. Much of the book of Revelation demonstrates what being in front of the throne of God will be like. We will all be judged based on what we did (Rev. 20:12), but remember that we know what our verdict will be. And of course, Revelation 21 shows the magnificence of our future home.
Now you must ask yourself, do you experience God? Does Christ live in you? Have you taken off the old and put on the new? Are you already justified or are you trying to earn justification? Do you KNOW that you have eternal life? If not, you can.
I hope I was able to help explain my perspective. Please follow up if you have any further quesitons.
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QUESTION: Thanks. Of course I have.
Do you mean that Christians have no character and free will anymore? Are you saying that Christ enters into their body and controls it? If that is so, it wouldnt be an experience, but a possession. How can two different personalities(a Christian+Jesus) exist in the same body? And what happens when the Christian sins?
As about "new creation" I found your verses. I think Paul means Christians are already saved, even if "new creation" hasnt yet existed. Bodies are still mortal, but Christians are saved for the future.
What youre saying about miracles, its very interesting and I'd like to know where I cant find TRUE CHRISTIANS that make miracles IN THE NAME OF JESUS. I also have a question about this, but maybe on another subject.
I am glad that the answer to the most important questions was yes for you. The subject of predestination vs. free will is a touchy one and has been debated over and over again. Frankly it's not a debate that I care to entertain. For someone to be dogmatic on the side of predestination suggests that God isn't fair or didn't come to save the whole world, just a few. For someone to be dogmatic about free will suggests that God isn't in complete control and that we can do something to help the situation.
I believe that God is sovereign and that we are chosen by Him as His elect. That is why we boast in Him and not of ourselves, as we can do nothing to earn this. I believe that God drew me to Him, and I believe that I responded to that calling. I also believe that God knew ahead of time that I would respond this way. Does that suggest predestination or free will? My finite mind cannot truthfully answer that question.
Regarding Christ in us, I have never really thought about two personalities existing in the same body. I have many times experienced an inner struggle between doing the right thing or the wrong thing, and I can very clearly feel the tug of God's will for me vs. my fleshly desire. I wouldn't say that we under the control of some possessive being. I would say that we humbly submit to the authority of Christ.
As far as if a Christian sins, 1 John 2:1-2 helps us in our understanding. "My dear children, I write this to you so that you will not sin. But if anybody does sin, we have an advocate with the FatheróJesus Christ, the Righteous One. He is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world."
This verse should also be paired up with Romans 6:1-2 that clearly states that we should not take advantage of our grace by living in sin.
I like your other thoughts regarding Paul's writings.
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QUESTION: I understand what you say.
You mean you felt a power and you welcomed this power inside you. It seems like free will. Anyway, this is another subject.
Do you know christian organizations that are famous for performing miracles in stadiums or whatever? I had seen a poster about "Dr Jesus" but didnt notice which christian section announced miracles in the name of Jesus and the date of the event has sadly passed.
In this time of technological hell and orthologism, miracles are necessary for shuting up the mouth of unbelievers and giving real hope to the believers. Miracles are against laws, so it would be really shocking to see these things happening, to see deadly diseases like cancer be beaten. To even see Death striken!
In the Bible miracles happened also from distance!, Jesus healed a daughter when her mother asked this from Him. But not only these, many dead were raised that period! I have read a book of an unbeliever comedian Lucianus who derides all the miracles that were performed in his time by various figures.
Its very important for me to know people that are PROVEN WITH GUARRANTY as mediums of the mediator Jesus Christ!
Of course faith is pre-needed. Jesus said that if you have faith you can do whatever.
Thanks, waiting your thoughts.
I am somewhat familiar with the things that you are talking about. Generally those "healing sessions" occur within the Pentecostal and/or Assembly of God congregations. These denominations tend to focus on the Holy Spirit moreso than other Protestant religions. As a result, demonstrations of the power of the Holy Spirit are more prevalent there.
In all honesty, I have never experienced miracles this way, so I can't really comment on them. I am hesitant to call all of them out as frauds even though some are. It's just something that I don't completely understand.
Now, I have definitely experienced miracles where there is absolutely no question that the hand of God was involved, particularly with one of my children. These miracles, however, did not come from some spiritual person coming and healing my child. It occurred through God's control of natural events that far exceed coincidence. Without going into detail just know that my child should not be alive, many times over. And yet, through a series of spectacular, and unexplainable circumstances, my child is alive and very healthy.
That said, I absolutely believe that miracles exist today. I also firmly believe that the miracles that occur will give glory to God and not to any person. That is why I am much more concerned about knowing Jesus Christ personally than knowing people who claim to be mediums for Him.
If you have specific questions about Pentecostalism or Assembly of God, there is a section for that in Allexperts under Religion/Spirituality; Christian-General; Assembly of God. The experts there may be more qualified to speak on these matters.
Of course, I welcome your questions and do hope to continue our discussions.