I think perhaps it might help in discussion if I offer some background of where I’m coming from. I grew up in an atheist home amid some rather harsh conditions. I too, was atheistic for many years.
The contact that I had from professing “Christians” were my teachers in a rural public school. Yet these Christian believers taught evolution and anti-Christian values to thousands of young children. Obviously, their salaries were of far greater importance than their personal convictions so that was their testimony. Their convictions merited no consideration and also were of many theological persuasions.
The term “Christian” is a broad brush. They include Catholic, Baptist, Lutheran, Mormon, Nazarene, Unitarian, Pentecostal and thousands upon thousands of other religions and denominations that cannot agree on the first “Christian” principle – that of salvation.
Their teachers span from Bishop Fulton Sheen to Oral Roberts, Herbert Armstrong, Billy Graham, John Calvin, etc. etc. They teach every conceivable idea ever come to man.
Their various religions seem to be tailored for the greatest personal benefit for their teachers and their organizations with little regard for truth or integrity. They are primarily commercial institutions that prey upon the masses of the unlearned.
Moving along, I realized my mortality and began questioning if there might possibly be something beyond the grave. (Not likely, but worthy of investigation.) In a sense you might say that when I looked, I saw the “hand of God.”
I saw a dead, dried-up seed emerge into life with a root hunting downward for the soil and the sprout turning green and reaching for light. The sprout split apart into two leaves. Under magnification I could see nutrients flowing through tiny veins within the new plant. (Just an accident of nature?)
I looked for the beginning of life – the primordial ooze that produced simple, one-celled animals. Under magnification, I saw a protozoa moving about within a drop of water. It could ingest and digest food and it displayed fear of its enemies, running away by its own locomotion. And it procreated by the dividing of its nucleus, into two identical, perfectly formed single celled animals. (Simple? No – astoundingly complex and a miracle within itself.)
So I began going to various churches and sat under the teaching of many, many teachers that all taught conflicting BASIC doctrines. (Which doesn’t seem to bother them because they routinely meet for a “Pastor’s Luncheon” where they discuss the numbers they’re running and their baptisms.) I couldn’t find a reputable, God – fearing teacher in the lot.
So I acquired a KJV bible, a NAS bible, a Book of Mormon, a Dake commentary, a Strong’s and a Vine’s and began reading. In the bibles, I started at Genesis and was convinced by 2nd Kings that the God of Abraham was indeed the intelligent force responsible for all that I was seeing in nature.
If a genuine understanding of the scriptures is to be discovered, I’m sure the keys to finding it depends to large degree upon understanding more about Judaism and God’s chosen nation since the majority of the bible is written to, about and for Israel.
I have never known anyone of the Jewish faith personally, but only in passing on a few rare occasions and I’m not a bible scholar, having worked my whole life in automotive manufacturing. I’ve been forced to take upon this task of study (one that I’m not particularly well suited) for lack of finding many teachers having integrity, but only having an interest in power and money.
Hey, I know my days are numbered and I’m already in the autumn of my years and moving into winter. I’m not looking further into mainstream Christianity groups where the big numbers are represented and truth is twisted and turned. Throughout the bible it has been the large groups that have chosen destruction, while only the smallest ‘remnants’ sought righteousness and found favor with God. Those who aim to take refuge in the large organizations seem to be in the greatest peril, historically.
As I have said, I’m not here to provoke or demean anyone else. I’m only trying to find my own way through this world and to hopefully find favor with God at the end of it.
The “list of 3 events” was something I first heard from Curt Crist, in Hendersonville, NC.