My own personal stance against religious hypocrisy - both my own, and any others who seek to hurt people in the name of God.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

In the Beginning

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Genesis 1:1 New King James Version

I started with the first first in my Bible on purpose. It symbolically represents the beginning of this blog. I guess it's my way of asking for God's favor.

The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters. Genesis 1:2 New King James Version

Isn't that the way of it? God creates something. Then it is damaged, ultimately losing its form.

I expect I was a beautiful baby. All the others I've seen are, so why not? As a very young person it must have been wonderful to look into innocent eyes which could not comprehend wrongdoing. Then I aged. I learned wrongdoing. I learned violence. I learned how to do harm.

All of these things I learned damaged me. They hurt others, but they damaged me. No longer was I innocent. No longer was my spirit beautiful to behold. I had become without form, and void.

Then God said, "Let there be light"; and there was light. Genesis 1:3 New King James Version

On the morning of my 19th birthday, 4:00 a.m. to be precise, God put light in my heart and began the process of recreation. Unfortunately, while he was able to accomplish the same task with the world in seven days (six - the seventh day he rested), it has taken much longer with me. And God doesn't get much rest in the process. In August of this year it will be 34 years since that fateful morning when I began to cease to be void and take on new form. The new form will ultimately be the same form as Christ himself. But it's taking a long time.

I would like to believe that there has been much progress over the past few years. Tragedy and distress have finally got my attention enough for me to pay attention and learn something. What I have learned best is the simplicity of God's gospel. His gospel is one of love and forgiveness. Not condemnation and hatred. So that is what I focus on.

Forgiveness is a major theme with God. The Old Testement, created by Jewish writers, reveals it over and over and over again. It's the entire New Testament gospel.

I have been reading the Quran. It is from this website. The Translator is Dr. Rashad Khalifa. I began reading it last Sunday and continued this morning. Here is some of what I read today. It is from a portion titled, 2-The Heifer (Al-Baqarah).

[2:30] Recall that your Lord said to the angels, "I am placing a representative (a temporary god) on Earth." They said, "Will You place therein one who will spread evil therein and shed blood, while we sing Your praises, glorify You, and uphold Your absolute authority?" He said, "I know what you do not know."

[2:31] He taught Adam all the names then presented them to the angels, saying, "Give me the names of these, if you are right."

[2:32] They said, "Be You glorified, we have no knowledge, except that which You have taught us. You are the Omniscient, Most Wise."

[2:33] He said, "O Adam, tell them their names." When he told them their names, He said, "Did I not tell you that I know the secrets of the heavens and the earth? I know what you declare, and what you conceal."

[2:34] When we said to the angels, "Fall prostrate before Adam," they fell prostrate, except Satan; he refused, was too arrogant, and a disbeliever.

[2:35] We said, "O Adam, live with your wife in Paradise, and eat therefrom generously, as you please, but do not approach this tree, lest you sin."

[2:36] But the devil duped them, and caused their eviction therefrom. We said, "Go down as enemies of one another. On Earth shall be your habitation and provision for awhile."

[2:37] Then, Adam received from his Lord words, whereby He redeemed him. He is the Redeemer, Most Merciful.

Of course, I am ignorant, on my own, but this is what I read from this short passage. "He redeemed him." That's forgiveness. To me, it appears the Quran begins speaking of God's forgiveness very early. If I am correct in my understanding, then the Quran is also telling us forgiveness is an important attribute of God.

Forgiveness bespeaks love. Without any love there can be no forgiveness. The greater the presence of love the greater the capacity to forgive. This is important to remember. For me, anyway.

To be loved by anyone is to be loved by God. To be forgiven by anyone is to be forgiven by God. Where God does not forgive, there is no forgiveness. Where God does not love, there is no love.

This is what I believe.

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