I took the liberty to start another thread on the Baha’i Faith, since the previous ones all have reached their 1000 post limit.
I think it can pretty fairly be said that of the huge number of false prophets who have come and gone, that claimed to be the Return of Jesus Christ in the glory of the Father, the claim of Baha’u’llah is without doubt the most likely to be true.
After all, the fact that there have been 5000 post discussions on His claim her on the Catholic forum is in itself a testament to how much exploratory work is at hand on His claims and Mission. (Please correct me if there are any other threads in CAF where there is a claim to a Return of Jesus Christ)
The main themes of discussion seem to revolve around the trinity, the resurrection, however the Bahai Faith is founded on so much more and I hope we can discuss the “so much more” a lot more
So please fire away with any questions dear friends
Please don’t assume or give the false impression that you’ve managed to generate a lot of interest in or prospective converts to your religion just because you’ve been given a forum for your views. The mods here have been very generous in allowing you to spread your message.
However, the real reason that there have been 5,000 posts is because a lot of people have gone to a lot of trouble to show you why you are wrong, and because a fair number of Baha’i have been called in to defend your religion’s claims that a mere man, Baha’u’llah, was Jesus returned.
Hi Servant. I know this wasn’t directed at me but I thought I’d give an answer. I actually am very ignorant of Baha’i and hope to learn a little here.
The thief in the night reference that Jesus makes doesn’t mean he will be hidden and unrecognizable, or that his coming will be secret only to a select few, but only that his second coming will be sudden and unexpected.
His final coming will be obvious and clear to the entire world. So we won’t have trouble recognizing Him. He says himself, “For as the lightning comes in the east and shines in the west, so will the coming of the Son of man be.” (Mt 24:27) It’s impossible to miss lightning, so we won’t be able to miss Him when He comes. He also says this,
Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken; then will appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. (Mt 24:29-30)
So according to Jesus, the entire world will see Him coming. There will be no mistake or doubt. There will be certain signs preceding it as well. Pretty straightforward really. Nothing confusing or secret about it.
I’ve never heard of Baha’u’llah before this to be honest, so I think, given Jesus’ own warnings of false prophets as well as His detailed descriptions of His actual return, that’s a pretty strong indicator that Baha’u’llah was not Jesus returned. If he was, according to Christ, the entire world would have seen him coming with all the angels in the glory of heaven. But that’s not the case.
If however, the expression of ones views and religious beliefs is requiring of other peoples generosity, ESPECIALLY when there is a choice to read or not to read, then there is a need for a new heaven and a new earth more than you yourself would give credit to
…again, we Baha’is appreciate deeply the dialogue that has been entertained by the posters on the Baha’i threads. We are after all, first and foremost God’s creatures, and for that and that alone, we love, cherish and feel connected with you all
Unfortunately, I cannot find any other mere man that has achieved what the “mere man” Baha’u’llah has achieved within such a small expanse of time. The Baha’i Faith has united people from every single religious, cultural, socio-economical, racial and national background on the planet. The second most widespread religion on earth, wityh 160 years… Can you name one other “mereman” that has done that truly Godly act?
Good question. I would say that first, the context of both verses Matthew 24:43 and 1 Thessalonians 5:2 make clear they are talking about an unexpected coming.
Watch therefore, **for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. ** But know this, that if the householder had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have watched and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready. For the Son of man is coming at an hour you do not expect. (Mt 24:43)
Jesus’ whole point about the parable is we have to be ever vigilant because he’s coming at an unexpected time. He says it himself very plainly here, it really doesn’t require any special interpretation or exegesis, with all due respect. Some parts of Scripture do, I agree. But this really isn’t one of them.
You seem to be under the impression that coming at an unexpected time, and the whole world seeing Him are mutually exclusive, but that doesn’t follow from anything He said (in fact it contradicts it) nor does it logically necessitate it. My whole house could be not expecting the robber to come in while we are watching TV, but when he does break in and catches us off guard and holds us hostage at gun point, we all see him. So I don’t see a reason to interpret this verse as meaning we would miss Jesus’ coming, especially when Jesus says exactly the opposite.
But as far as who interpreted it this way. As Catholics we believe that Christ himself established the Church and gave her His authority and as such she is the ultimate interpreter of Scripture. And the Church has repeated what Jesus himself said, that He’ll come in an hour we don’t expect, and that all the world will know and see Him because when He comes that will be the end of history and He will judge the living and the dead
You can read more about it in paragraphs 668-682 in the Catechism if you would like.
Robyn p - It may not have been that easy, there is a lot of meaning in these verses that is not so straight forward, consider this next verse
“But watch yourselves lest your hearts be weighed down with dissipation and drunkenness and cares of this life, and that day come upon you suddenly like a trap. For it will come upon all who dwell on the face of the whole earth. But stay awake at all times, praying that you may have strength to escape all these things that are going to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.” Luke 21:34-36 ESV
If ones was to take this as it states, then you must never go to sleep! Thus the Stay awake at all times must be a spiritual meaning, that is be spiritually awake and ready!
It is also the same as the scripture you posted
Therefore, stay awake, for you do not know on what day your Lord is coming. But know this, that if the master of the house had known in what part of the night the thief was coming, he would have stayed awake and would not have let his house be broken into. Therefore you also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an hour you do not expect. Matthew 24:42-44
So if we are to take them spiritually then there is no reason why it can not mean that most will not see the Thief and He will have come and gone before they know they have Missed Him, it is very rare a Thief in the Night is Caught in action!
This next passage is immense!
For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. Matthew 16:27
It could be that this passage refers to Baha’u’llah who is known as The Father, the angles were the tens of thousand of Souls that gave their life for this cause in its beginning.
Paragraph 674 and following seems to be saying that the gentiles and the Jews must recognise Christ, before Christ can return.
That looks quite different from the Bahai understanding, that God sends a seer, prophet, or Manifestation of God (who is the return of the Word), when people have turned away from God. A doctor comes to a sick man, not to a healthy one. In other words, Bahais use the language of “return” in the context of the cycle of God’s people turning away from God and being called back to God, which for Catholics (correct me if I am wrong), would be called the history of the pilgrim church moving towards fulfilling God’s will. The catechism on the other hand uses the term “second coming” in the context of the end of that history, when God’s will has been fulfilled on earth.
So when Bahais say, Christ has returned, they mean God got so fed up with the lack of progress that he gave the pilgrims a push on the back to get them moving again, but Catholics hear them saying, we got to the end of the road, we’ve arrived. Naturally they won’t agree on whether it has happened, because they are talking about 2 different things.
Jesus took great pains to urge His followers to see/hear (to understand) with spiritual eyes/ears (he that has eyes to see, let him see, he that hath ears, let him hear) or they would miss the true meaning of His words. Baha’u’llah explains how an outward and literal fulfillment expected by the people will never happen in a sudden, miraculous way because that would force belief. He writes:
"As the adherents of Jesus have never understood the hidden meaning of these words, and as the signs which they and the leaders of their Faith have expected have failed to appear, they therefore refused to acknowledge, even until now, the truth of those Manifestations of Holiness that have since the days of Jesus been made manifest. They have thus deprived themselves of the outpourings of God’s holy grace, and of the wonders of His divine utterance. Such is their low estate in this, the Day of Resurrection! They have even failed to perceive that were the signs of the Manifestation of God in every age to appear in the visible realm in accordance with the text of established traditions, none could possibly deny or turn away, nor would the blessed be distinguished from the miserable, and the transgressor from the God-fearing. Judge fairly: Were the prophecies recorded in the Gospel to be literally fulfilled; were Jesus, Son of Mary, accompanied by angels, to descend from the visible heaven upon the clouds; who would dare to disbelieve, who would dare to reject the truth, and wax disdainful? Nay, such consternation would immediately seize all the dwellers of the earth that no soul would feel able to utter a word, much less to reject or accept the truth. "
(Baha’u’llah, Book of Certitude, p. 8
Please explain what you (or Baha’u’llah) understand from the following words of Jesus:
53 Jesus said to them, “Very truly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in them. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me. 58 This is the bread that came down from heaven. Your ancestors ate manna and died, but whoever feeds on this bread will live forever.”
Abdu’l-Baha, Baha’u’llah’s son and appointed interpreter, dealt with your question this way:
Question.—The Christ said: “I am the living bread which came down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof and not die.” 1 What is the meaning of this utterance?
Answer.—This bread signifies the heavenly food and divine perfections. So, “If any man eateth of this bread” means if any man acquires heavenly bounty, receives the divine light, or partakes of Christ’s perfections, he thereby gains everlasting life. The blood also signifies the spirit of life and the divine perfections, the lordly splendor and eternal bounty. For all the members of the body gain vital substance from the circulation of the blood.
In the Gospel of St. John, chapter 6, verse 26, it is written: “Ye seek Me, not because ye saw the miracles, but because ye did eat of the loaves, and were filled.”
It is evident that the bread of which the disciples ate and were filled was the heavenly bounty; for in verse 33 of the same chapter it is said: “For the bread of God is He which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.” It is clear that the body of Christ did not descend from heaven, but it came from the womb of Mary; and that which descended from the heaven of God was the spirit of Christ. As the Jews thought that Christ spoke of His body, they made objections, for it is said in the 42nd verse of the same chapter: “And they said, Is not this Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we 98 know? how is it then that he saith, I came down from heaven?”
Reflect how clear it is that what Christ meant by the heavenly bread was His spirit, His bounties, His perfections and His teachings; for it is said in the 63rd verse: “It is the spirit that quickeneth; the flesh profiteth nothing.”
Therefore, it is evident that the spirit of Christ is a heavenly grace which descends from heaven; whosoever receives light from that spirit in abundance—that is to say, the heavenly teachings—finds everlasting life. That is why it is said in the 35th verse: “And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to Me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on Me shall never thirst.”
Notice that “coming to Him” He expresses as eating, and “belief in Him” as drinking. Then it is evident and established that the celestial food is the divine bounties, the spiritual splendors, the heavenly teachings, the universal meaning of Christ. To eat is to draw near to Him, and to drink is to believe in Him. For Christ had an elemental body and a celestial form. The elemental body was crucified, but the heavenly form is living and eternal, and the cause of everlasting life; the first was the human nature, and the second is the divine nature. It is thought by some that the Eucharist is the reality of Christ, and that the Divinity and the Holy Spirit descend into and exist in it. Now when once the Eucharist is taken, after a few moments it is simply disintegrated and entirely transformed. Therefore, how can such a thought be conceived? God forbid! Certainly it is an absolute fantasy.
To conclude: through the manifestation of Christ, the divine teachings, which are an eternal bounty, were spread abroad, the light of guidance shone forth, and the spirit of life was conferred on man. Whoever found guidance became living; whoever remained lost was seized by 99 enduring death. This bread which came down from heaven was the divine body of Christ, His spiritual elements, which the disciples ate, and through which they gained eternal life.
The disciples had taken many meals from the hand of Christ; why was the last supper distinguished from the others? It is evident that the heavenly bread did not signify this material bread, but rather the divine nourishment of the spiritual body of Christ, the divine graces and heavenly perfections of which His disciples partook, and with which they became filled.
In the same way, reflect that when Christ blessed the bread and gave it to His disciples, saying, “This is My body,” 2 and gave grace to them, He was with them in person, in presence, and form. He was not transformed into bread and wine; if He had been turned into bread and wine, He could not have remained with the disciples in body, in person and in presence.
Then it is clear that the bread and wine were symbols which signified: I have given you My bounties and perfections, and when you have received this bounty, you have gained eternal life and have partaken of your share and your portion of the heavenly nourishment.