Salvation through Love alone = God alone?


#1

Well, this got my thinking and I’m going to post this is most forums about religion. Here it goes…

How do we reach salvation? Is salvation for Christians only? Can anyone, even atheists, reach heaven? My answer - yes. My thoughts:

What I’m starting to believe now is that if salvation is through Jesus, who is God, who is Love, then anyone is able to reach heaven through the act of Love, because God is Love, and Jesus is God.

Are people damned because they never got the opportunity to know Christ? Where’s the equal opportunity? Or maybe there IS one? Can those people indeed reach salvation through acts of Love that come from the heart, not of pride? Can sharing God’s Love be good enough for salvation? Is believing in doing Love like believing in Christ?

Just my thoughts. I sorta rushed this since I wanted to get this out before bedtime :).

God Bless.


#2

:extrahappy:


#3

I dunno what that’s supposed to mean? Is this what the Catholic Church teaches?


#4

I was glad to see that there are Christians who feel that others can also get to Heaven. I used to think that only Catholics got to Heaven. Then I changed my thinking to include all Christians. I then married a Hindu man. Marrying him changed my thought process completely. He has since become a Christian but the rest of his family remained in the Hindu religion. If we believe in a kind and forgiving God, then we must believe that He wants each of His children to be with Him in Heaven. People who are not Christians are still His children. It’s not up to us to decide who gets to Heaven and who doesn’t. I decided long ago that I’ll simply leave that up to God. He can make that decision; not me.
I must add that I have a beautiful picture of Christ that my Hindu sister-in-law sent to me from India.


#5

Does it look like this?:smiley:

http://www.bu.edu/alumni/bostonia/graphics/2004/spring/lord/lord02.jpg


#6

Not at all. Your picture reminds me of Buddha. My picture shows the Risen Christ and is absolutely beautiful.


#7

You know what would be a cool picture for me though?

A picture of Christ in the clouds, below Christ, Buddha, Mohammad, Abraham, etc, looking down on earth watching people of different religions holding hands and giving praise. :slight_smile:

Maybe someone can photoshop? Hehe, that’s just me.


Anyway, back to topic. What does everyone else feel about the topic?


#8

Does any Catholic here have AIM? I want to talk about my views on salvation. I’m not really liking the ‘post, wait 5 minutes for reply’ thing. And besides, there are other things I want to say.


#9

So if God = Love then can Love = God?

[quote=1 John 4:7-8] Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God. He that loveth not knoweth not God; for God is love."
[/quote]


#10

God is love.
Love is blind.
Therefore, God is blind.
:shrug:


#11

im currently talking about this subject. so i bring it back


#12

You have the patience of Job.

My emoticon reflected my belief that your original post represented (though perhaps using debatable language) the magisterial Catholic teaching that a sincere desire for God (that is, for Love) can potentially open the gates of salvation, even for a Christian.:wink:


#13

Hmm, I kinda get what you are saying? :shrug:

I’ll try to elaborate more on what I think.
I’m totally against salvation through good works, good works being doing so in order to get a reward. Anyone can do the good works Jesus desired all of us to do, love from the heart. With that being said, does that type of good work, coming from an atheist, show that they understand what true love is, therefore they understand who God is, since God is love?

Is that type of salvation still through works from the heart alone? Is that possible? Really, how is a non-Christian saved? Do they have to wait until they end up in purgatory? or can they have an idea just by following their heart with what is wrong and what is right, not because they do it for a reward, but because it’s part of who they are?

Can they have faith in love? Love being, the humbleness, the loving nature, patience, etc? If they have faith in love, doesn’t that mean they have faith in God? So then is the atheists salvation complete because they have faith in love?

Faith + Love = Salvation

Sorry if it sounds confusing. :slight_smile:


#14

I take an Eastern Orthodox perspective on this: salvation is never complete – it is an infinitely on-going process. And the atheist can take that first step, if she chooses.:smiley:


#15

Oh, wrong choice of words. I didn’t mean complete as in saved, I meant salvation is possible for an atheist because of their faith in love? This also goes for Buddhist, Hindus, etc., they either worship a god, or no god, but they still have faith in love.


#16

repentance is the method for salvation.

Is salvation for Christians only?

yes.

Can anyone, even atheists, reach heaven?

no.

because God is Love,

can you be more specific?

I meant salvation is possible for an atheist because of their faith in love?

I have no idea what you mean.

Are people damned because they never got the opportunity to know Christ?

There is no ‘chance’ with God. He knows who his family is before they are birthed.

I sorta rushed this since I wanted to get this out before bedtime

It sounds like your theology comes from your dreams. If this was a new age forum, you’d find more support for your stream of consciousness insights.


#17

If what you say is true, that even kind, loving Christ-denying atheists are saved then the Gospel has no power and Jesus Christ was sacrificed in vain, which is the worst blasphemy that could ever be uttered.

You are taking a phrase (presumably) from 1 John. What does he say in the same place? (4:7) “This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him.” and "This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. "

1 Corinthians 13.6
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth.

How can you reconcile that verse with your ideas?


#18

The English word love is completely worthless in attempting to understand what love means biblically.

The Biblical definition of love is found in II John 6 “this is love (agape) that we walk after his commandments”

There is no word in the New Testament Greek for our word love. We have incorporated several Greek words into our English word “love”. In 21th century America we have confused and misused three of these Greek words: agape, phileo, and eros. The first two are both translated “love” in the New Testament. The word phileo (love) means to be affectionate. Men corrupt the word agape (love) when they quote the Bible and imply that that agape is affection. John said, “God is love (agape)”. Jesus said we are to love (agapeo - verb form of agape) our neighbor and our enemy (Mark 12:31; Matt. 5:44). He was not saying that we are to be affectionate (phileo) to them. He was saying that we are to “God” (agapeo) them, since God is love (agape). We are to give our neighbor and our enemy all that God is --his instruction. When we love (agape) our enemies we feed them the only food that is legal (prescribed) for sheep to consume (the law - instruction in God’s word). The Lord defined legal food for his people when he said to Adam, “You may eat of all the trees of the garden except – (Gen. 2:16,17)”. Love (agape) is feeding on the word of God. We love (agape) others when we fellowship (eating at the Lord’s “spiritual” table) with them, as we instruct in God’s word. If a man does not believe God and read his Bible (understanding instruction himself), he cannot possibly love ( agapeo/agape) his neighbor or his enemy as Christ commanded us to do. To love (agape) does not mean to show affection (phileo) to them, but rather to give them the truth of God’s word. “All the law (nomos - legal food - instruction) is fulfilled (finished or accomplished) in one word – thou shalt love (agapeo - give God’s instruction) thy neighbor (Gal. 5:14).” “Love (agape) worketh no ill (evil) to “his” (agape is the person, God) neighbor: therefore love (agape) is the fulfilling of the law (Rom. 13:10).” God is not affection (phileo). He is instruction in truth. “Thy word (instruction) is truth (John 17:17).” There will be a shortage of love (agape) at the end of time. Jesus said, "because iniquity (unlawful food) shall abound, the love (agape - instruction in the word) of many shall wax cold (Matt. 24:12; Amos 8:11,12).


#19

Good point well made. :slight_smile:


#20

And this is coming from a…?

Because God is Love, a non-christian can have faith in love, which is the same as faith in God?

Maybe it is from a dream, I don’t remember. But I long for universal peace, and I see that happening when everyone learns how to love the way God intended us to love. I’ve seen people find this kind of love from other religions. I’m totally cool with that, and I pray that they continue to love that way. I feel this is what God wants, and if another religion is a way God shows His love, so be it. The type of love that loves the person because of who they are, not because of what their religion background is. Accepting that they are God’s creation and has learned to love the same way. The love that says they can love the same way Christians love, even as a Buddhist or atheist.

When a non-Christian helps us, we may say, “thank God”. I thank God because of His love through them, and if it’s part of their well-being that’s even better, and I would pray for him to enter heaven because of their faith in love.

Not to be mean or anything, I was really looking for a Catholic response to my question.

But thanks for contributing.


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