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Christians Are Fear Mongers!
By NiteOwlDave
Evangelical Christians are to be blamed for fostering all of this after-life, damnation scare stuff we hear about, right?
Wrong. No way, Jose!
The Bible certainly speaks of a literal Heaven and Hell, but it must be pointed out that those who know little or nothing of Christianity are haunted by fear of the coming judgement.
All non-Christian people, from pagans to idolaters, have that fear.
A built-in conscience—which we all have—directs people to visit their local witch doctor or has them rely on fetishes, amulets, or undertake a sacred pilgrimage in an attempt to earn salvation or to appease whatever god, spirit, or image they believe to exist.
Such "life insurance" practices are quite similar worldwide and can be traced back for thousands of years before the advent of Christianity.
Those who advance the teachings of the Bible cannot be blamed for launching the concept.
Concern over eternal damnation continues today and, it says here, that this instinctive fear will continue to haunt mankind no matter how scientifically-smart we become.
Well, science cannot factor away the sense of right and wrong which God placed in each of us at birth.
It is our God-placed conscience which regularly whispers to us.
Some listen to the voice, but most don't.
From a "Christian" perspective, one must point a bony finger directly at the Roman Catholic Church for instilling a hopeless sense of guilt that has its ardent followers doomed to a place of misery, at least for a season.
Catholicism dogmatically claims that the Church dispenses the graces of Christ through its sacraments—graces which can be lost by failure to live up to its rules—and thus there is no way to know for sure that one will make it to Heaven.
Roman Catholicism involves its members in many forms of attempted appeasements of God in order to earn Heaven or lessen one's time in its purgatory.
Endless Masses offered on behalf of the dead are paid for by their survivors in the hope of lessening the purgatorial suffering of the deceased.
Some priests, monks, nuns, and concerned followers today wear haircloth underwear, put rocks in their shoes, flog themselves, etc., in the hope of earning forgiveness of sins and becoming more worthy of Heaven.
Millions of Roman Catholics all over the world make pilgrimages to shrines, light candles, pray to saints in Heaven, wear scapulars and medals, and employ crucifixes as a means of appeasement of God in the hope of meriting God's forgiveness.
It must be crushing to a Roman Catholic when someone like the late Cardinal O'Connor of New York states that neither he nor Pope John II nor Mother Teresa (or anyone else) could know with certainty what their eternal destiny might be.
This, he declared, was the official teaching of the Roman Catholic Church.
If kindly Mother Teresa is possibly shoveling coal in purgatory, the rest of us ain't got a snowball's chance!
One may also point an accusatory finger at the evangelical Christian for instilling the fear of Hell.
Isn't the "born again" Christian just as guilty of taking the same "Get-ready, Hell-awaits" stance as the Roman Catholic?
The answer is an unqualified "Yes!"
However, there is a vast difference between what the Roman Catholics threaten and what the evangelical propagates with regard to the afterlife.
The evangelical draws his total truth from the Bible which he believes to be the inspired and completed Word of God and allows no room for any add-on theology.
Roman Catholicism puts strong stock in its church tradition and history.
With the Roman Catholic, the inspired Canon of Scripture is a part—indeed a major part—of its theological mix.
That is unfortunate because the Bible gives clear hope for eternal life with a living Christ upon death. Roman Catholicism does not.
The Bible points to total forgiveness of sins NOW and a guarantee of eternal life to anyone who will honestly confess they are a sinner and calls out to Christ for His completed salvation.
Reject or ignore Christ and you choose Hell.
Place your total faith in Christ and you choose Heaven.
"Lord Jesus, I confess to you that I am a sinner.
I believe that you shed your blood and died for my sin.
I believe you provided for my total salvation when you died and rose again.
Right now (add time and date), I invite you into my heart as Lord and Saviour.
I ask you now to direct my life.
Thank you for saving me."
Anything else?
Yes, begin attending a church where, as they say, the Holy Bible is wholly taught, and get baptized to publicly declare your faith in Christ.