Would you tell your child if they don't behave well enough they will be punished forever, and no matter how hard they try, they will always fail, and they will never know if they did well enough until they die, and will likely spend eternity being burned alive along with the rest of the world because very few people are chosen to avoid this fate, and well good luck with that so jump through all these hoops trying to do it, and it must be done our way, all the other ways are wrong, because just in case, because it is not clear and rather confusing why a loving God would condemn the majority of his own creation when he could have chosen differently and it takes mental gymnastics to justify it, is better than being wrong?
In my opinion that is unintended psychological abuse that can follow most people that were raised that way for all their lives, feeling fear, shame, guilt, and never feeling good enough, always falling short as a "sinner". Yet this is the depressing "good news" that is supposed to be joyful of many mainstream, fundamentalist religions. Brainwashing is a great way to make sure your "sheep" stay in line and don't venture into other pastures, using a fear tactic to get compliance. The emotions of fear and love cannot occupy your mind at the same time. Fear is a low vibration, however love and peace are the highest vibrations you can experience.
No thank you to religion that uses fear as a tactic. Moral superiority and pious self-righteousness are a slippery slope and warned about, yet it seems to be the very basis of a lot of religious viewpoints. I will take my positive, loving, peaceful Oneness Metaphysical Spirituality over that brand of condemning and judgemental religion, all day long, for eternity. Without any fear whatsoever! I believe God is unconditionally loving. This life is a journey with lessons to be learned along the way and is all a part of our spiritual growth to understand our connection with Divine Spirit.
I believe there are many paths to God, no matter what your religion or spirituality may be. God is within you, created you and loves you right now just the way you are, a perfect child of God! You may stumble, you might fall, but God is there to always lift you up! It doesn't diminish your worth or value to be human.
To me, Jesus is not what mainstream religion says. Jesus is love. God is love. You can choose to be love. To follow Jesus is to act from a place of love, charity and forgiveness. No hoops required. No fear. No hell. You are forgiven. You can vibrate higher and walk a path to greater enlightenment. That is joy!
Love, forgive, show empathy and do not look down on other people. Have faith in yourself and in a merciful God.
“Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. "
- Luke 3:7
"Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy. You will again have compassion on us; you will tread our sins underfoot and hurl all our iniquities into the depths of the sea."
- Micah 7: 18-19
"And he said to her, “Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace. Your suffering is over.”
- Mark 5:34
"Whoever exalts himself will be humbled; but whoever humbles himself will be exalted."
- Matthew 23:12
Let it be so and so it is. God bless you and Namaste.
Rev. S. Castle