re: Self, version 2.0

Just finished reading Mr. Eby’s Self, version 2.0 post and I
fully agree with one of the comments:

Just another note. It’s funny how similar our experiences are to the
Christian concept of being born again. I sometimes wonder if we’re
not all having the same experience but coming to them from very
different paths.

In fact, until very late in the reading I was fully convinced that he
was describing a Christian experience. Mostly everything written would
describe perfectly how my life was changed after truly discovering
Christ.

Before that happened, I was constantly afflicted by a sense of utterly
failure. Hardly anything that I did made me feel better. Any
and all sense of happiness and sucess quickly faded. I had
a hard time living through each day.

But now, after being born again in Christ, I look back and hardly believe
on the things that I did or said. That old self or him as
Phillip said looks to me like a distant cousin, one of those that you
haven’t meet in ages and barely remembers his name.

In the past I always tried to have a relaxed approach at life. However
that had to happen on my personal strength. You have to be really
strong to live your life like that and not have a breakdown every now
and then. I had those 4 month cycles where I would breakdown and cry
for a whole day. That was depressing.

I’m a new person now. I’ve been freed from those issues and my new
self is a much happier and relaxed person. Not on my own strength
anymore but because of Christ Jesus my Lord and Savior.

Not that I speak in respect to lack, for I have learned in whatever
state I am, to be content in it. I know how to be humbled, and I know
also how to abound. In everything and in all things I have learned the
secret both to be filled and to be hungry, both to abound and to be in
need. I can do all things through Christ, who strengthens me.
— Philippians, 4:11-13

Faith is such a controversial subject to talk about. It’s
extremely uncommon to see people profess their personal faith
nowadays. Yet, they are thirsty and start to realize that there’s a
hole in their lives that just cannot be filled. That hole is too
big. In fact it’s so big there’s only one thing that is a perfect
fit and capable of filling it.

Why is it easier to those people to believe in books and religion
invented by some random person than in Christ and the Bible?
It’s really sad to see this as a Christian.

It’s so much simpler and painless to believe in God and Jesus. Yet,
people seek for relief and put their faith on the most unbelievable
things. People put their faith in man-made images and idols. They go
through endless hops and paths filled of pain in the search of
something that they don’t know, but can only be found in God.

The God I believe is not the God of hate and anger, but the God of
Love
. The Christ I believe is not dead. The cross could not stop
him. Death could not stop him. Instead, he was raised on the third
day and now sits in heavenly places!

For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor
principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers,
nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to
separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
— Romans 8:38-39

Might yourself discover the love of Christ, and have Him be the
responsible for a change in your life. Might you find happiness and
joy, and be able to look back to your old self and not recognize
him so great the change He will operate in your life.

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7 thoughts on “re: Self, version 2.0

  1. Another Random…
    """Why is it easier to those people to believe in books and religion invented by some random person than in Christ and the Bible? It’s really sad to see this as a Christian."""

    Well, since you ask…

    I’ve come to realize — not a profound realization, just one I hadn’t thought of for some time — that of all the things I *could* become, a Christian is not one of them. I could gain faith or lose faith, I could believe in any number of things — I haven’t closed myself to such things. But I couldn’t become a Christian any more easily than I could start believing in Zeus.

    Christianity is a tradition. I know *of* that tradition — probably more than most of my secular friends, and maybe more than several of my Christian friends. But I’m not of that tradition; my family is a couple generations into secular humanism now. I can take on new philosophies, but taking on a new tradition is a rather odd experience. Why one instead of another? Certainly when there is a spiritual vacuum many people reach into their peer group and their past, and they find Christianity. But neither my past nor my peer group has Christianity, and my spiritual life has not been a vacuum. And so where would my faith in Christ come from? These things don’t emerge from the ether.

    So, there you go. To some of us Christ is just a random person, and The Bible is just a random book, and there’s nothing that can be changed about that. I think, on some level, there’s no going back — if *I* had turned away, I could turn back, but separated by generations the shift becomes permanent.

  2. re: tradition
    I disagree with that. If that was the case, then no single person in China would be Christian. Yet, the number of Christians is exploding in China.

    1. http://tinyurl.com/7qrao
    2. http://tinyurl.com/dm4da

    I, too, never expected to be a Christian myself. I was a great fan of humanism and positivism. I had tried budism. And while all of this seemed to bring some peace and a sense of completeness, it was all too shallow.

    Then I tried Christianity. And now there’s no turning back. My faith has grown day after day. I had experiences with God. Once you are really into Christianity there’s just too many evidence that God exists and that Jesus was really the Savior to not believe.

    Think about it. Where is Zeus? What did he do for you? What can he do for you today?

    God sent his son Jesus to live on earth and die for us. No other ‘god’ out there would do the same.

  3. Uncommon?
    <i>Faith is such a controversial subject to talk about. It’s extremely <b>uncommon</b> to see people profess their personal faith nowadays. Yet, they are thirsty and start to realize that there’s a hole in their lives that just cannot be filled.</i>

    Surely you jest… the US has become more overtly evangelical Christian centric over the past 20 years than at any time since the post-WWII ‘modern era’.

    It hasn’t helped any.

  4. And what’s wrong with Zeus?
    I’m shocked, positively shocked, that you’ve dismissed a personal relationship with me, Zeus, son of Chronos, supreme ruler of Mount Olympus.

    Free souvlaki to all who follow me.

  5. re: US
    That’s right, the US is a exception to this. I don’t live in the US though, but in Brazil and evangelic christianity is more of a silent (or forcibly silenced) revolution here, with the main communication channels (tv, radio and newspapers) constantly attacking it.

  6. Hi Zeus!
    Maybe you were in vacation when I’ve visited Athens, but I didn’t meet you there.

    The souvlaki was great, though. :)

  7. China et al
    There is a social and power relationship between China, Christianity, and the Western world. The indians in the Americas had no tradition either, and yet I would hardly call the conversion one of spontaneous faith. It’s not to say such mission work is always coercive, but it is often manipulative, and very consciously so. Whatever it takes to save their souls. And China is ripe for it, because they don’t have a monotheistic tradition, and I think monotheism is quite compelling when coming from other traditions. There’s a reason why polytheism has largely disappeared.

    As for Zeus, he’s done just as much for me as Christ has. I mean, c’mon; all the gods I don’t believe in are on equal footing. And as for God sending Jesus to die… that whole thing makes zero sense to me. I mean, God *is* Jesus. Whatever that is supposed to mean. And he died, but so what? We all die. Most of us die for more than 3 days, so I’m unimpressed by the sacrifice. And heck, I read everything Jesus said — which is about 10 pages worth of material, he wasn’t exactly prolific — and it doesn’t exactly jump out at me as revelatory. And I’ll be damned if I’m going to listen to Paul. Haha, I think I made a pun of sorts. A heretical pun.

    I recognize that Christian faith — and most faith, regardless of religion — is something I don’t understand, that I can’t empathize with. You can’t reason about faith, I accept that. But it goes both ways — I accept (and am entirely comfortable) with the fact that I can’t use reason to convince you not to be a Christian. I don’t have any desire to convince you of that. But similarly you won’t be able to use reason to convince me (or anyone) to be Christian. You can use the language of reason, but that’s just a facade. In using that language you might convince someone of something; but you didn’t do it with reason. You connected with some desire, some as-yet restrained belief in them, some image, something that was there before.

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