Author Archives: startingoverwithchristianity

Original Sin

The Doctrine of Original Sin says that what people are at the core of their being is filthy, disgusting sinners. The most basic fact about you is that you are a piece of filth, rotten to the core. You are so rotten that you nauseate God.

Why are you that way? Is it because you choose to sin? No. You are that way because God made you so that you could do nothing but sin. But even though God made you so that you could not help but sin, God still holds you accountable for sin and wants to burn you in hell for it.

That, believe it or not, is the foundation on which Protestant and Roman Catholic beliefs are based. All of Protestant and Roman Catholic Christianity start with that one belief, the belief upon which everything else is based. That’s where both start.

But that leads to a horrible picture of God. It also leads us to have a horrible picture of ourselves, and it leads us to have a horrible picture of others.

Let’s leave all that behind and consider something different!

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

The Trinity

The idea of the Trinity prevents Christians from seeing God the way Jesus taught us to see God—as being like the best human fathers. It’s interesting to go back in Christian history and see how and why the idea of the Trinity developed, and what it was originally intended to mean. Ancient Christians were struggling to come up with an understanding of exactly who Jesus was. The idea of the Trinity emerged from that.

Although Western Christianity does not realize this, their view of the Trinity eventually morphed into the belief that there are three separate Gods. But are there really three separate Gods? Does the main God, the Father, want to burn us in hell but can’t because His Son Jesus stands in the way?

This podcast offers you an opportunity to rethink what you’ve heard about the Trinity and also rethink the picture of God the Trinity paints.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

Jesus and Social Problems

Why did Jesus not address the social injustices and inequities of His time? Slavery, the relegation of women to second-class status, cruel and inhumane punishments, just to name a few—all these things were common in Jesus’ day, yet He did not criticize them. Jesus reserved practically all of his criticism for the religious leaders. Why did He ignore the societal injustices and go on a campaign against the religious leaders?

Christians have given various answers to that, none of which are satisfactory. And so we must look at this question in a different light. When we do that, we’ll find something that has implications for how we live our daily lives–the things you do make who you are, and who you are will follow you for all eternity.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

Living in Today’s World

It’s hard not to get disgusted with the political circus going on in Washington, D. C. It’s also hard not to wring your hands over the state of things in the world.

Let’s put all that into perspective. The way we’ll do that is to consider a Christian belief that’s not talked about a lot—Jesus sitting at the right hand of God.

We won’t look at it like most Christian do, as God and God’s assistant sitting on their separate thrones. We’ll look at it in an entirely different way.

If your mind is open enough to consider this, you can have an entirely different perspective on life.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

Life Before Birth

Did some part of you exist before you were born? Most Christians would immediately answer “no.” We are told the Christian belief is that nothing about you existed before you were born.

However, that hasn’t always been the belief in Christianity. A segment of ancient Christianity believed that a part of you has existed since before God made the universe. A segment of ancient Christianity also believed in reincarnation. Those beliefs, though, were snuffed out 1500 years ago by The Church.

In this last segment of our three-part series on the soul, we look at what it really means to say that human beings have a spiritual part to them. We try to come up with some kind of understanding that goes beyond the dogma of institutional Christianity.

In doing so, we find a completely different version of what Christianity is all about, what human beings really are, and what God is like.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

The Soul, Consciousness, and the Nature of Reality

For part of this podcast, we go outside Christianity and consider an idea from cutting-edge science. For all the hoopla surrounding modern science, there are many questions science cannot answer. These are questions about the “why?” in addition to questions about the “how?” They are some of the deepest questions of life, questions people really want answers to. But science doesn’t have those answers. And so, it ignores the questions. As a result, science has brought us no closer to answers to the deepest questions of life than people were two or three thousand years ago.

In this podcast, we consider a theory that does not ignore the deepest questions of life–the theory of Biocentrism. This theory is directly opposite one of the main assumptions of modern science–that life began from the physical, that the physical came first and then life developed from the physical elements. This is one of the unquestioned assumptions on which modern science is based.

Biocentrism, though, says that life was first, and that the physical develops from life. A fascinating concept to explore!

Then, we look at some of the things Jesus said in the Gospels. We find that they fit very well with the idea of Biocentrism.

So what do we do with that?

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

The Soul (part one)

This is the first in a two-part series on the soul.

But in the scientific age, and in the age where Christianity is increasingly focused on our lives here on earth, talking about the soul seems so outdated! Why would anyone waste time talking about old-fashioned notions like the soul?

Actually, the soul is the key to understanding what Christianity is really all about, and no, I’m not talking about getting your sins forgiven!

In this podcast, we look at the concept of the soul. What is the soul? Do we really have a soul? What actually is the soul?

We look at life, how science has no definition of what life is and really doesn’t know what life is.

Finally, we come up with an overall definition of what the soul is.

That prepares us for part two of this series on the soul, where we will look at the nature of reality itself and a fascinating intersection of Christianity and cutting-edge science.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

End of Life Decisions

Death is a part of life, and everyone will face it. Many times, when a person’s life is nearing its end, they have to make what are called “end of life decisions.” Do they want feeding tubes, kidney dialysis, ventilators, and other life support measures? If so, which ones? Under what circumstances? At what time do they want life support discontinued, or do they want it continued indefinitely?

And then there are various medical treatments. How do you decide which treatments you want and how far to go with the treatments? If you have cancer, do you want the entire gamut of surgery, chemotherapy, radiation, immunotherapy, and experimental treatments? At what point do you stop treatments? Do you have to have treatments at all, or is it OK to reject treatments?

These are questions many people will have to face. Unfortunately, people often don’t consider questions like this beforehand. As a result, they often have to make them on-the-spot, under pressure, during a very emotional time, and without having the time or clarity of mind to really consider them. Or, what’s even worse, perhaps family members have to make those decisions, not knowing what their loved one would want.

No matter what your age and no matter how healthy you are, now is the time to consider end of life issues. This podcast considers end of life issues from a Christian perspective. What is the Christian perspective on life support, rejecting or accepting treatments, and other issues people face as their life draws to a close?

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

Why Should I Believe Christianity?

There are many religions in the world other than Christianity. The followers of those religions are just as convinced that their religions are true as the followers of Christianity are convinced that theirs is true.

But even if you’re not interested in religion, there are many different philosophies of life that can substitute for religion. The followers of each of those are also convinced that their particular philosophy of life is true.

Given all that, given this wide range of competing religions and philosophies of life, why should anyone believe Christianity? If it’s just one among many, how can anyone really believe it?

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.

Where Is God?

You don’t have to accept what churches and organized Christianity say in order to be a Christian! You can break free of all that, go beyond the mess organized Christianity has made of things, and find what Christianity is really all about! Our podcasts help you do just that.

This podcast considers the question, “Where Is God?” The most popular way Christians today think of God is that God is off up in heaven. Some Christians believe God never does anything in the world, is never involved in the world at all. He just sits up in heaven doing nothing here in the world. He might have a feeling of “love” for us, but that’s it. Other Christians, though, believe God controls everything in the world, pulls the strings and controls every single move every person in the world makes. Both of these ideas share a view of God that says God is distant from us, removed from us. Even Christians who believe God pulls all the strings and controls everything believe He does it remotely, from way off up in heaven.

This leads most Christians to see a separation between us and God–we’re here on earth, God’s somewhere else.

That’s how The Church and organized Christianity tell us we’re supposed to look at God.

But of course, we don’t have to do what The Church and organized Christianity say. In this podcast, we look at the question, “Where Is God?”, starting not with what organized Christianity tells us, but starting with what we find in Jesus. When we do that, we find a very different way of looking at God.

For a transcript of this podcast, click here.