|Choose one or the other|
- but you can't have both!
"Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see." (New Living Translation 2007)
In Ephesians 2:8 Paul teaches that it is this kind of faith that causes God's grace to save certain people.
"By grace are ye saved, through faith."
Paul did NOT say:
"By grace are ye saved through proof."
It is not possible to have faith in something that you know to be true, because the proof is so overwhelming that you know that it is true. Therefore faith becomes superfluous. For example I know that I am typing this article on my computer. I don't have faith in that. I know it to be true because I have abundant proof that it is true.
The mechanism of salvation, according to Paul, is NOT proof; it is faith. Mix faith and proof together and proof absorbs faith and all that you are left with is the solid irrefutable proof. I would be misusing the English language to say that "I have faith that I am typing on my computer." I know that I am typing on my computer because the level of the proof for the hypothesis is overwhelming.
This is something that Christadelphians have never seriously considered and it has led to much confusion in their thinking about their faith.
We Ex-Christadelphians have thought it through and that is why we left the religion.
Let me explain:
Falling For The Faith Trick
If a Nigerian email scammer offers to transfer eighty million dollars into your bank account, you don't know that you are going to be rich, because you don't have any proof that the money will actually arrive. But you could have faith that it's time to celebrate your coming good fortune.
In exactly the same way, Christadelphians write to me saying that they have the promise of eternal life in Christ's Kingdom. They are celebrating something that has not yet arrived; and may not.
Say something like that to an Ex-Christadelphian and you are going to make their head spin; because we are realists. We are rational. We are not naive. We have common sense. We are not going to fall for an Iron Age Christian confidence trick any more than we would send our bank account details to a confidence trickster in Nigeria.
When we read Hebrews 11:1 we smell a rat. It's the same feeling we get when we see an "I need your help to transfer some money out of Nigeria" in the in-box of our emails. We think to ourselves "Yeah ........ Sure.......Like I'm stupid enough to believe that!"
Christadelphians read Hebrews 11:1 and they fall for it. They fall for the confidence trick because they want it to be true.
Confidence tricksters say "You can't trick an honest man." In other words, people have to be avaricious in order to fall for the confidence trick that is proposed. That's exactly what Christadelphians are. They are avaricious to live after death so they willingly fall for the prank that the apostle is playing on them. They swallow the Gospel like a fish taking the bait.
Then, like puppy dogs chasing cars that they can never catch, they give and attend endless lectures hopelessly trying to prove the things that they believe. They don't realise that if they ever did discover actual proof for the things that they believed, then their faith would fly out of the window and they would instead know that what they believed was true.
But without faith they cannot be saved! Therefore the vain quest to find proof to support their faith is a endless game of chasing their tails. Proof does not validate faith; it eliminates it and replaces it with a certainty that does not require faith any longer.
But according to Paul, that's not what God is demanding. God is asking for faith, not proof.
If there were a God he could easily provide convincing proof. But that does not happen. Therefore either God does not exist, or he does not wnat us to have any credible proof for his existence.
The reality of course is that there is no God and that's why there is no proof.
The Reward For Seeking Proof Is Death
Proof saves no one. The wages of proof is death. Proof is a cold, hard road to follow with endless grave at its end. It takes nerves of steel for us Ex-Christadelphians to turn away from the tempting Christadelphian path of faith that supposedly leads to fame, glory and eternal life in the Kingdom.
But we do turn away and instead we choose to trek through the wilderness of reality. Because we are smart enough to know when we are being conned and Christianity is one almighty confidence trick. Poor Nigerians don't send millions to Western bank accounts and Christadelphians are never going to rise from the dead. They are going to endlessly rot in the earth alongside us Ex-Christadelphians and we will all finally be in the same united fellowship - the fellowship of the dead.
|Faith and Proof|
I'll tell you the answer:The answer is that your faith is weak. You don't really believe the things that you profess. So you spend much time and effort trying to prove it to yourself to try to stop those niggling little doubts that gnaw at the edges of your faith.
What Destroys Faith
One of two things destroy faith.
1. The first is the discovery of proof. Faith then instantly evaporates and is replaced with certainty.
2. The second is the awful realisation that there is no credible proof. Faith then dies a slow, lingering, excruciatingly painful death.
I know because it took approximately thirty years for my faith to die. It started to die about ten years before I resigned. It began as tiny doubts that drove me to ever greater efforts to validate my faith. It ended thirty years later, not with a bang, but a whimper, as it breathed its last breath and I was free. That's why I worked so hard preaching for the Christadelphians in those final years. I was trying to validate my own faith.
Nowadays I watch other brethren frantically trying to defend their faith in ever more elaborate ways. It's like watching a drowning swimmer atop the Niagara Falls flailing their arms trying to swim away from the edge. I watch idiotic CALS videos on YouTube where, for example, John Hellawell claimed that a proof for God is the instruction in Leviticus for people to wash their hands. Another brother claimed that because Egypt has many ruins it's a fulfilment of a prophecy in Ezekiel. I could go on; but I won't. You see my point. They are scraping the bottom of an empty barrel looking for grains of proof for an impossible hypothesis.
Why bother? Why not accept that they don't need any proof for their faith or it would not be faith?
You can't have both because faith and proof don't mix.
Take your pick of one or the other. Christadelphians choose faith while Ex-Christadelphians choose proof.
Which is your choice?