Architecture Marvels

Chateau of Cheverny 🇫🇷 ​🏰

A magical place which enchants visitors of all ages. The Château de Cheverny is a grand estate which has been in the same family for over six centuries. Cheverny has always been lived in and every generation has made a great effort to take care and embellish it with a true passion. In 1922 it was one of the first private homes to open its doors to the public.

We appreciate the splendour and delight of real life in a castle. The owners invited us to discover this fantastic and vivid heritage: from the botanical park to the magnificent interior of the Château; the hunting dog kennels to Tintin’s exhibition and the gardens through to the forest.

The Château de Chenonceau is a French château spanning the River Cher, near the small village of Chenonceaux in the Indre-et-Loire département of the Loire Valley in France. It is one of the best-known châteaux of the Loire valley.

The estate of Chenonceau is first mentioned in writing in the 11th century. Chenonceau castle is well furnished with Renaissance furniture, a good collection of 16th and 17th century tapestries and a great number of masterpieces. 

The bedrooms of the ladies of the chateau, who played major roles in the history of Chenonceau are the most exquisite. Paintings by Le Primatice, Rubens, Le Tintoret, Rigaud, Nattier are among the most famous names that can be found here.

Chateau d'Artigny 🇫🇷 🏰

Chateau D’Artigny is an 18th century-style château located in the heart of the Loire Valley, 15 km from Tours. It offers luxury 5-star accommodation with a spa, pool and gastronomic restaurant. The current structure was built between 1912 and 1928 to serve as residence to perfumer François Coty.

As we rented our own car in order to drive to this Chateau, we found ourselves driving in the night through a dark forest with tree branches joining above us to form a tunnel like passageway, there were no street lamps and no moon light as soon as we drove into the forest we could only see our car headlight infront with complete pitch darkness in the rear view mirror, it was a scary experience and we were so happy when we finally saw the light at the end of the tunnel and it was breath-taking to see the Chateau light up with purple and yellow lights.

Château de Chambord 🇫🇷 🏰

The Château de Chambord in Chambord, Centre-Val de Loire, France, is one of the most recognisable châteaux in the world because of its very distinctive French Renaissance architecture which blends traditional French medieval forms with classical Renaissance structures.

While the chateau’s immensity, facade and estate are enough to impress, its main attraction could very well be its central staircase. Attributed to Leonardo da Vinci, the brilliant inventor, the Chambord staircase features a design concept that was unique at the time: two spirals that intertwine, giving outside observers the impression of a single structure. And yet anyone who has climbed the stairs can attest that it is possible to reach the next floor without crossing paths with another person who is walking at the exact same pace: at best, they may glimpse one another through the slits carved into the inner side of the staircase.

Step into awe at CHIJMES Hall, filled with unique charm and ambience. An exquisitely restored early Gothic styled 19th Century chapel with intricate design and detail, it’s the perfect location to make memories that will last a lifetime.

Boasting enviable high ceilings and detailed stained glass windows, the chapel’s columns and corridors also bear lovely motifs of flowers and birds – all adding to its lasting allure. Gazetted as a National Monument in 1990, CHIJMES Hall is indeed a stunning venue in the heart of the city.

Marina Bay Sands Hotel 🇸🇬

Marina Bay Sands is a destination for those who appreciate luxury. An integrated resort notable for transforming Singapore’s city skyline, it comprises three 55-storey towers of extravagant hotel rooms and luxury suites with personal butler services. In addition, its architecture is made complete with the Sands SkyPark which crowns the three towers.

At the Sands SkyPark be prepared to be wowed by the 360-degree views on the observation deck. As hotel guests, we really enjoyed the breath-taking experience of swimming in the infinity-edged swimming pool overlooking the horizon. Diving into the pool before dusk and witness the picturesque view of the sunset from the pool’s edge, 200 metres in the sky.

Shanghai Tower, China 🇨🇳

Shanghai Tower is a 632-metre, 128-story megatall skyscraper in Lujiazui, Pudong, Shanghai. It is the world’s second-tallest building by height to architectural top and it shares the record of having the world’s highest observation deck within a building or structure at 562 m. We had afternoon tea at The Ritz Carlton with a great view of the Shanghai Tower. 

Taipei 101 🇹🇼

With a height of 1667 feet or 508 meters, Taipei 101 has the distinction of being the third tallest building in the world, and tallest outside the Middle East.

Its spire adds to its height, and the total makes it higher than the Kuala Lumpur Petronas Twin Towers. The name, Taipei 101, is derived from the fact that the building encompasses 101 floors.

We had a delightful afternoon tea at The Ritz Carlton Hotel which was in perfect view of Taipei 101 building in the background and Gem really loved the food.

Ho Chi Minh City Hall 🇻🇳

Ho Chi Minh City Hall, officially called the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee Head Office is the city hall of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. The hall was built in 1902–1908 in a French colonial style. Since 1975, the building has housed the Ho Chi Minh City People’s Committee. 

Although the building is not open to the public, it is popular for its photo opportunities. Tourists can take photographs outside and many people choose to do this at night when the building and its grounds are lit up.

Barack Obama Quotes

Barack Obama Inspirational Quotes

Barack Obama is the 44th President of the United States. His story is the American story — values from the heartland, a middle-class upbringing in a strong family, hard work and education as the means of getting ahead, and the conviction that a life so blessed should be lived in service to others. He took office during the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression during the 1930s, when one-fourth of all workers were unemployed and people traveled the country looking for food and work. President Obama and his wife, Michelle, are the proud parents of two daughters, Malia and Sasha.

“Change will not come if we wait for some other person or some other time. We are the ones we've been waiting for. We are the change that we seek.” – Barack Obama
“We are reminded that, in the fleeting time we have on this Earth, what matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame, but rather how well we have loved and what small part we have played in making the lives of other people better.” – Barack Obama
“Keep exploring. Keep dreaming. Keep asking why. Don’t settle for what you already know. Never stop believing in the power of your ideas, your imagination, your hard work to change the world.” – Barack Obama
“You can’t let your failures define you. You have to let your failures teach you.” – Barack Obama
“When times get tough, we don't give up. We get up.” – Barack Obama
“When ignorant folks want to advertise their ignorance, you don't really have to do anything, you just let them talk.” – Barack Obama
“Don't be afraid to ask questions. Don't be afraid to ask for help when you need it. I do that every day. Asking for help isn't a sign of weakness, it's a sign of strength. It shows you have the courage to admit when you don't know something, and to learn something new.” – Barack Obama
“If somebody is different from you, that's not something you criticize, that's something that you appreciate.” – Barack Obama
“Just because we have the best hammer does not mean that every problem is a nail.” – Barack Obama
“The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something. Don’t wait for good things to happen to you. If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.” – Barack Obama
“Hope is not blind optimism. It's not ignoring the enormity of the task ahead or the roadblocks that stand in our path. It's not sitting on the sidelines or shirking from a fight. Hope is that thing inside us that insists, despite all evidence to the contrary, that something better awaits us if we have the courage to reach for it, and to work for it, and to fight for it. Hope is the belief that destiny will not be written for us, but by us, by the men and women who are not content to settle for the world as it is, who have the courage to remake the world as it should be.” – Barack Obama
“Our destiny is not written for us, but by us.” – Barack Obama
“Every single one of you has something you're good at. Every single one of you has something to offer. And you have a responsibility to yourself to discover what that is. That's the opportunity an education can provide.” – Barack Obama
“We did not come to fear the future. We came here to shape it.” – Barack Obama
“It's not just enough to change the players. We've gotta change the game.” – Barack Obama
“Where you are right now doesn't have to determine where you'll end up.” – Barack Obama
“I've come to embrace the notion that I haven't done enough in my life. I've come to confirm that one's title, even a title like president of the United States, says very little about how well one's life has been led. No matter how much you've done or how successful you've been, there's always more to do, always more to learn, and always more to achieve.” – Barack Obama
“Don’t ever let anybody tell you that your efforts don’t matter or that your voice doesn’t count. Don’t ever believe that you can’t make a difference. You have.” – Barack Obama
“Mothers are the rocks of our families and a foundation in our communities. In gratitude for their generous love, patient counsel, and lifelong support, let us pay respect to the women who carry out the hard work of motherhood with skill and grace, and let us remember those mothers who, though no longer with us, inspire us still.” – Barack Obama
“Learning to stand in somebody else's shoes, to see through their eyes, that's how peace begins. And it's up to you to make that happen. Empathy is a quality of character that can change the world.” – Barack Obama
“Hope in the face of difficulty. Hope in the face of uncertainty. The audacity of hope! In the end, that is God’s greatest gift to us...A belief in things not seen. A belief that there are better days ahead.” – Barack Obama
“A change is brought about because ordinary people do extraordinary things.” – Barack Obama
“What we can do is to live out our lives as best we can with purpose, and love, and joy. We can use each day to show those who are closest to us how much we care about them, and treat others with the kindness and respect that we wish for ourselves. We can learn from our mistakes and grow from our failures. And we can strive at all costs to make a better world.” – Barack Obama
“If you only think about yourself - how much money can I make, what can I buy, how nice is my house, what kind of fancy car do I have? - over the long term, I think, you get bored. I think your life becomes diminished. The way to live a full life is to think: What can I do for others?” – Barack Obama

Jim Rohn Quotes

Jim Rohn Inspirational Quotes

For more than 40 years, Jim Rohn honed his craft like a skilled artist—helping people the world over sculpt life strategies that expanded their imagination of what is possible. Those who had the privilege of hearing him speak can attest to the elegance and common sense of his material. It is no coincidence, then, that he is still widely regarded as one of the most influential thinkers of our time, and thought of by many as a national treasure. He authored countless books and audio and video programs, and helped motivate and shape an entire generation of personal-development trainers and hundreds of executives from America’s top corporations.

“Formal education will make you a living; self-education will make you a fortune.” – Jim Rohn
“Let others lead small lives, but not you. Let others argue over small things, but not you. Let others cry over small hurts, but not you. Let others leave their future in someone else's hands, but not you.” – Jim Rohn
“Words do two major things: They provide food for the mind and create light for understanding and awareness.” – Jim Rohn
“The difference between where you are today and where you'll be five years from now will be found in the quality of books you've read.” – Jim Rohn
“You must constantly ask yourself these questions: Who am I around? What are they doing to me? What have they got me reading? What have they got me saying? Where do they have me going? What do they have me thinking? And most important, what do they have me becoming? Then ask yourself the big question: Is that okay? Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.” – Jim Rohn
“The problem with waiting until tomorrow is that when it finally arrives, it is called today.” – Jim Rohn
“Success is nothing more than a few simple disciplines, practiced every day; while failure is simply a few errors in judgment, repeated every day. It is the accumulative weight of our disciplines and our judgments that leads us to either fortune or failure.” – Jim Rohn
“I think everybody should study ants. They have an amazing four-part philosophy. Never give up, look ahead, stay positive and do all you can.” – Jim Rohn
“You have two choices: You can make a living, or you can design a life.” – Jim Rohn
“Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.” – Jim Rohn
“We suffer one of two things. Either the pain of discipline or the pain of regret. You've got to choose discipline, versus regret, because discipline weighs ounces and regret weighs tons.” – Jim Rohn
“Learn how to separate the majors and the minors. A lot of people don't do well simply because they major in minor things.” – Jim Rohn
“The ultimate reason for setting goals is to entice you to become the person it takes to achieve them.” – Jim Rohn
“You've got to believe in the possibilities. You've got to believe that tomorrow can be better than today. And here's the big one. Believe in yourself.” – Jim Rohn
“What you become directly influences what you get.” – Jim Rohn
“If you don't change your approach than you will never change your results!” – Jim Rohn
“Nourish the mind like you would your body. The mind cannot survive on junk food.” – Jim Rohn
“The twin killers of success are impatience and greed.” – Jim Rohn
“Discipline has within it the potential for creating future miracles.” – Jim Rohn
“Learn to express, not impress.” – Jim Rohn
“The more obstacles you face and overcome, the more times you falter and get back on track, the more difficulties you struggle with and conquer, the more resiliency you will naturally develop. There is nothing that can hold you back, if you are resilient.” – Jim Rohn
“Failure is not a single, cataclysmic event. You don't fail overnight. Instead, failure is a few errors in judgment, repeated every day.” – Jim Rohn
“Let others lead small lives, but not you. Let others argue over small things, let them complain over what might have been, but not you. Let others cry over small hurts, let them be discouraged, let them be revengeful and vindictive, but not you. Let others leave their future in someone else's hands, let them become materialistic and empty, but not you. Let others become ungrateful and stop praying, but not you! Let others give up, but not you! For you know in whom you believe and you know that He is always able. Now, that's you!” – Jim Rohn
“Character is a quality that embodies many important traits, such as integrity, courage, perseverance, confidence and wisdom. Unlike your fingerprints that you are born with and can't change, character is something that you create within yourself and must take responsibility for changing.” – Jim Rohn
“Learn how to turn frustration into fascination. You will learn more being fascinated by life than you will by being frustrated by it.” – Jim Rohn
“Learn how to turn frustration into fascination. You will learn more being fascinated by life than you will by being frustrated by it.” – Jim Rohn

Nelson Mandela Quotes

Nelson Mandela Inspirational Quotes

Nelson Mandela was a social rights activist, politician and philanthropist who became South Africa’s first Black president from 1994 to 1999. After becoming involved in the anti-apartheid movement in his 20s, Mandela joined the African National Congress in 1942. For 20 years, he directed a campaign of peaceful, nonviolent defiance against the South African government and its racist policies. Beginning in 1962, Mandela spent 27 years in prison for political offenses. In 1993, Mandela and South African President F.W. de Klerk were jointly awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for their efforts to dismantle the country’s apartheid system. For generations to come, Mandela will be a source of inspiration for civil rights activists worldwide.

“There can be no greater gift than that of giving one’s time and energy to help others without expecting anything in return.” – Nelson Mandela
“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” – Nelson Mandela
“It is in your hands to create a better world for all who live in it.” – Nelson Mandela
“I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.” – Nelson Mandela
“Do not judge me by my success, judge me by how many times I fell down and got back up again.” – Nelson Mandela
“Fools multiply when wise men are silent.” – Nelson Mandela
“Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine, that a child of farm workers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.” – Nelson Mandela
“What counts in life is not the mere fact that we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” – Nelson Mandela
“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.” – Nelson Mandela
“If you want the cooperation of humans around you, you must make them feel they are important - and you do that by being genuine and humble.” – Nelson Mandela
“A winner is a dreamer who never gives up.” – Nelson Mandela
“May your choices reflect your hopes, not your fears.” – Nelson Mandela
“Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings.” – Nelson Mandela
“Everyone can rise above their circumstances and achieve success if they are dedicated to and passionate about what they do.” – Nelson Mandela
“Freedom can never be taken for granted. Each generation must safeguard it and extend it. Your parents and elders sacrificed much so that you should have freedom without suffering what they did. Use this precious right to ensure that the darkness of the past never returns.” – Nelson Mandela
“For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.” – Nelson Mandela
“Live life as though nobody is watching, and express yourself as though everyone is listening." ~ Nelson Mandelas why it is such a powerful weapon.” – Nelson Mandela
“My dream would be a multicultural society, one that is diverse and where every man, woman and child are treated equally. I dream of a world where all people of all races work together in harmony.” – Nelson Mandela
“A real leader uses every issue, no matter how serious and sensitive, to ensure that at the end of the debate we should emerge stronger and more united than ever before.” – Nelson Mandela

Nick Vujicic Quotes

Nick Vujicic Inspirational Quotes

Nick Vujicic (“voo-yi-chich”) is an Australian-American born without arms or legs who has become a world-renowned speaker, New York Times best-selling author, coach and entrepreneur. Nick faced tremendous obstacles in life from, living life without limbs, to being bullied at school and fearful for his future with no purpose in sight.  Without hope, his feelings of helplessness and isolation led him to attempt suicide. Nick persevered through life’s challenges and discovered key principles which enabled him to find his purpose and turn obstacles into opportunities; making him one of the most sought-after keynote speakers in the world!  Millions of people have found hope, purpose and the strength to overcome their challenges through Nick’s inspirational speeches and powerful coaching.

“I honestly didn't think miracles could ever come from my broken pieces, and I was disabled in fear that my dreams would always remain as dreams. Don't give up on you. Don't give up on God. Don't give up on love.” – Nick Vujicic
“People always complain that they can't do this and they can't do that." "If we look at our lives and concentrate on things that we don't have or wish to have, that doesn't change the circumstances. The truth is that we have to focus on what we have and make the best out of it.” – Nick Vujicic
“I am gonna try again and again, because the moment I give up, is the moment I fail.” – Nick Vujicic
“Just because I don't understand god's plans does not mean that he is not with me.” – Nick Vujicic
“You do not know what you can achieve until you try.” – Nick Vujicic
“Having faith, beliefs, and convictions is a great thing, but your life is measured by the actions you take based upon them.” – Nick Vujicic
“There's no point in being complete on the outside when you're broken in the inside.” – Nick Vujicic
“You don't know what God can do with your broken pieces until you give God your broken pieces.” – Nick Vujicic
“I never met a bitter person who was thankful. Or a thankful person who was bitter.” – Nick Vujicic
“When you can't get a miracle, you can still be a miracle for someone else.” – Nick Vujicic
“If God can use a man without arms and legs to be His hands and feet, then He will certainly use any willing heart!” – Nick Vujicic
“To effectively communicate, we must realize that we are all different in the way we perceive the world and use this understanding as a guide to our communication with others.” – Nick Vujicic
“Motivation gets you through the day, but inspiration lasts a lifetime.” – Nick Vujicic
“To wish for change will change nothing; To make the decision to take action right now will change everything.” – Nick Vujicic
“I may have absolutely no control over what happens to us, but we can control how we respond. If we choose the right attitude, we can rise above whatever challenges we face.” – Nick Vujicic
“Don't give up on God, because God will not give up on you.” – Nick Vujicic
“It’s what you practice in private that you will be rewarded for in public.” – Nick Vujicic
“The greatest rewards come when you give of yourself. It's about bettering the lives of others, being part of something bigger than yourself, and making a positive difference.” – Nick Vujicic
“Risk, then, is not just part of life. It is life. The place between your comfort zone and your dream is where life takes place. It's the high-anxiety zone, but it's also where you discover who you are.” – Nick Vujicic
“In life you have a choice: Bitter or Better? Choose better, forget bitter.” – Nick Vujicic
“It's a lie to think you're not good enough. It's a lie to think you're not worth anything.” – Nick Vujicic
“I’ve come to believe that all my past failure and frustration were actually laying the foundation for the understandings that have created the new level of living I now enjoy.” – Nick Vujicic
“Fear is a bigger disability than having no arms and no legs.” – Nick Vujicic
“You can either be angry for what you don't have or thankful for what you do have. Do your best and God will do the rest.” – Nick Vujicic
“The greater the struggle the more glorious the triumph.” – Nick Vujicic
“Keep moving ahead because action creates momentum, which in turn creates unanticipated opportunities.” – Nick Vujicic
“Failure is not important, how you overcome it is.” – Nick Vujicic
“If we all could be a true friend to someone, praying and encouraging one person somehow, that's a first step in being part of making the world a better place.” – Nick Vujicic
“Have you ever felt trapped in circumstances, then discovered that the only trap was your own lack of vision, lack of courage, or failure to see that you had better options?” – Nick Vujicic

How can a loving God send someone to hell?

How can a loving God send someone to hell?

In order to address the question of a loving God sending someone to hell, we need to define a few terms and correct a few wrong assumptions. Our definitions must be biblical, and our assumptions must be correct.

We must first define the term loving God. This phrase assumes some things about God, and answering the question at hand according to flawed assumptions leads to wrong conclusions. Our culture defines a “loving God” as a completely non-confrontational being who tolerates anything we want to do. But that is not a biblical definition. First John 4:16 says that God is love. That means that He does not possess love as we do; He is the very definition of love and therefore cannot do anything that is unloving. The law of non-contradiction states that something cannot be both true and untrue at the same time. So, if God IS love, then He cannot be at the same time unloving.

So the first fallacy present in the question “how can a loving God send someone to hell?” is the idea that allowing people to go to hell is an unloving act on God’s part. If we humans decide that God is somehow wrong to allow unrepentant sinners to pay their deserved penalty, then we have declared that we are more loving than God is. We have set ourselves up as God’s judge and jury and in doing so have closed the door to deeper understanding. Therefore, the first step in answering this question is to agree with Scripture that God IS love; therefore, everything He does is an expression of that perfect love.

The second fallacy presented by the question “how can a loving God send someone to hell?” concerns the word send, which denotes an action only on the part of the sender. If a man sends a letter, sends a request, or sends a gift, all action was done by that man. No action was taken on the part of the letter, request, or gift. However, this understanding of the word send cannot be applied to the question at hand because God has given human beings freedom to participate in their life choices and eternal destinations (John 3:16–18). The way this question is worded implies that, if anyone goes to hell, it is the result of God’s unilateral action, and the person being sent to hell is a passive victim. Such an idea completely disregards the personal responsibility God has entrusted to each of us.

“How can a loving God send someone to hell?” The entire question is wrong. A better wording is “If God is love, then why do some people go to hell?” Romans 1:18–20 lays the foundation for the answer: “The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse” (emphasis added).

There are several key points in this passage that give us glimpses into the heart of God. First is the fact that people actively “suppress the truth.” People have been given enough truth to know and surrender to God, but they refuse it. Self-will wants to deny God’s right to tell us what to do. So, with the truth in front of them, many people turn away and refuse to see it. Atheist Thomas Nagel has said, “It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God and, naturally, hope that I’m right in my belief. It’s that I hope there is no God! I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that.”

Second, Romans 1 states that God has “made [God’s nature] plain to them.” In other words, God has taken the initiative to make His truth known to everyone. History has proved this since time began, as every people group has sought some understanding of a Creator to whom they owe allegiance. Such knowledge is an integral part of what it means to be created in the image of God (Genesis 1:27). Romans 1:20 then says that “people are without excuse.” And to whom would they give such an excuse? The very One who says He has made Himself known to them, if they would only humble themselves and accept such revelations. God judges each of us according to the truth He has given us, and Romans 1 states that we each have enough truth to turn toward rather than away from Him.

When answering the question “how can a loving God send someone to hell?” another facet of God’s nature comes into play. God is not only love, but He is perfect justice as well. Justice requires adequate payment for crimes committed. The only just punishment for high treason against our perfect Creator is eternal separation from Him. That separation means the absence of goodness, light, relationship, and joy, which are all facets of God’s nature. To excuse our sin would require God to be less than just, and to allow sin-tainted humans into His perfect heaven would render that place less than perfect. That’s why only the perfect Son of God could go to the cross in our place. Only His perfect blood was an acceptable payment for the debt we each owe God (Colossians 2:14). When we refuse Jesus as our substitute, we must pay the price ourselves (Romans 6:23).

God gave us the freedom to choose how we respond to Him. If He forced us to love Him, we would be robots. To give us no option but obedience would be a violation of our free will. Love is only love when it is voluntary. We cannot love God unless we have the option of not loving Him. Because God honors our autonomy, He will never force surrender or loyalty. However, there are consequences for either choice. C. S. Lewis summarizes this truth in his classic work, The Great Divorce: “There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, ‘Thy will be done,’ and those to whom God says, in the end, ‘Thy will be done.’ All that are in Hell, choose it.”

 

“How can a loving God send someone to hell?” Got Questions Ministries https://www.gotquestions.org/loving-God-send-someone-hell.html

Is there life after death?

Is there life after death?

Job, speaking out of his despair, asked, “If a man dies, shall he live again?” (Job 14:14, ESV). All of us have been challenged by this question. Is there life after death? What happens to us after we die? Do we simply cease to exist? Is death a revolving door of departing and returning to earth? Does everyone go to the same place after death, or do we go to different places? Is there really a heaven and hell?

The Bible tells us that, yes, there is life after death. This world is not all there is, and mankind was made for something more. At death, the body ceases to function and begins the process of returning to the earth, but the spiritual part of man lives on: “The dust returns to the ground it came from, and the spirit returns to God who gave it” (Ecclesiastes 12:7; cf. Psalm 146:4).

To those who are redeemed and have their sin forgiven, God gives eternal life, an existence so glorious that “no eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9, NLT). This eternal life is inextricably linked to the Person of Jesus Christ: “Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent” (John 17:3). In Jesus’ prayer in this passage, He equates “eternal life” with a knowledge of God and of the Son. “Whoever has the Son has life” (1 John 5:12).

Jesus Christ, God incarnate, came to the earth to pay for our sins and give us the gift of eternal life: “He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed” (Isaiah 53:5). Three days after His crucifixion, Jesus proved Himself victorious over death by rising from the grave—He is life personified (John 11:25) and the ultimate proof that there is life after death.

The resurrection of the Christ is a well-documented event. The apostle Paul invited people to question the over 500 eyewitnesses who saw Jesus after His resurrection (1 Corinthians 15:6). All of them could bear testimony to the fact that Jesus is alive and that there is indeed life after death.

The resurrection of Christ, which gives us the sure hope of life after death, is the cornerstone of the Christian faith (1 Corinthians 15:12–19). Because Christ was raised from the dead, we have faith that we, too, will be resurrected. As Jesus told His disciples, “Because I live, you also will live” (John 14:19). Christ was only the first of a great harvest of those who will be raised to life again (1 Corinthians 15:23). Just as God raised up Jesus’ body, so will our bodies be resurrected upon Jesus’ return (1 Corinthians 6:14).

The fact of life after death does not mean everyone will go to heaven, however. People will continue to exist after they die, and there will be a resurrection someday, but God makes a distinction between the resurrection of the just (those who are in Christ) and the unjust (those who die in their sin): “Multitudes who sleep in the dust of the earth will awake: some to everlasting life, others to shame and everlasting contempt” (Daniel 12:2). Paul put it this way: “There will be a resurrection of both the righteous and the wicked” (Acts 24:15).

Each person must make a choice in this life, a choice that will determine his or her eternal destination. It is appointed for us to die once, and after that will come judgment (Hebrews 9:27). Those who have been made righteous by faith in Christ will go into eternal life in heaven, but those who have rejected Christ as Savior will be sent to eternal punishment in hell (Matthew 25:46). Hell, like heaven, is a literal place. It is a place where the unrighteous will experience the never-ending, eternal wrath of God. Hell is described as a lake of fire where the inhabitants will be tormented day and night forever and ever (Revelation 20:10). In hell, there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth, indicating intense grief and anger (Matthew 13:42).

God takes no pleasure in the death of the wicked but desires them to turn from their wicked ways so that they can live (Ezekiel 33:11). But He will not force us into submission; if we choose to reject Christ, the one and only Savior, we reject the heaven that He has prepared, and we will live eternally apart from Him. Life on earth is a preparation for what is to come. Faith in Christ prepares us for life after death: “Whoever believes in [God’s Son] is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son” (John 3:18).

Everyone will experience life after death in some manner. For believers in Christ, life after death is eternal life in heaven with God. For unbelievers, life after death is eternity in the lake of fire. How can we receive eternal life and avoid hell? There is only one way—through faith in Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die” (John 11:25–26).

The free gift of eternal life is available to all. “Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them” (John 3:36). We will not be given the opportunity to accept God’s gift of salvation after death. Our eternal destination is determined in our earthly lifetimes by our reception or rejection of Jesus Christ. “I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation” (2 Corinthians 6:2). If we trust in the death of Jesus Christ as the full payment for our sin, and we believe in His resurrection from the dead, we are guaranteed eternal life after death, in glory (1 Peter 1:3–5).

 

“Is there life after death?” Got Questions Ministries https://www.gotquestions.org/is-there-life-after-death.html

Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?

Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?

We live in a world of pain and suffering. There is no one who is not affected by the harsh realities of life, and the question “why do bad things happen to good people?” is one of the most difficult questions in all of theology. God is sovereign, so all that happens must have at least been allowed by Him, if not directly caused by Him. At the outset, we must acknowledge that human beings, who are not eternal, infinite, or omniscient, cannot expect to fully understand God’s purposes and ways.

The book of Job deals with the issue of why God allows bad things to happen to good people. Job was a righteous man (Job 1:1), yet he suffered in ways that are almost beyond belief. God allowed Satan to do everything he wanted to Job except kill him, and Satan did his worst. What was Job’s reaction? “Though he slay me, yet will I hope in him” (Job 13:15). “The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away; may the name of the LORD be praised” (Job 1:21). Job did not understand why God had allowed the things He did, but he knew God was good and therefore continued to trust in Him. Ultimately, that should be our reaction as well.

Why do bad things happen to good people? As hard as it is to acknowledge, we must remember that there are no “good” people, in the absolute sense of the word. All of us are tainted by and infected with sin (Ecclesiastes 7:20; Romans 3:23; 1 John 1:8). As Jesus said, “No one is good—except God alone” (Luke 18:19). All of us feel the effects of sin in one way or another. Sometimes it’s our own personal sin; other times, it’s the sins of others. We live in a fallen world, and we experience the effects of the fall. One of those effects is injustice and seemingly senseless suffering.

When wondering why God would allow bad things to happen to good people, it’s also good to consider these four things about the bad things that happen:

1) Bad things may happen to good people in this world, but this world is not the end. Christians have an eternal perspective: “We do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Corinthians 4:16–18). We will have a reward some day, and it will be glorious.

2) Bad things happen to good people, but God uses those bad things for an ultimate, lasting good. “We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). When Joseph, innocent of wrongdoing, finally came through his horrific sufferings, he was able to see God’s good plan in it all (see Genesis 50:19–21).

3) Bad things happen to good people, but those bad things equip believers for deeper ministry. “Praise be to . . . the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. For just as we share abundantly in the sufferings of Christ, so also our comfort abounds through Christ” (2 Corinthians 1:3–5). Those with battle scars can better help those going through the battles.

4) Bad things happen to good people, and the worst things happened to the best Person. Jesus was the only truly Righteous One, yet He suffered more than we can imagine. We follow in His footsteps: “If you suffer for doing good and you endure it, this is commendable before God. To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps. ‘He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.’ When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly” (1 Peter 2:20–23). Jesus is no stranger to our pain.

Romans 5:8 declares, “But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Despite the sinful nature of the people of this world, God still loves us. Jesus loved us enough to die to take the penalty for our sins (Romans 6:23). If we receive Jesus Christ as Savior (John 3:16; Romans 10:9), we will be forgiven and promised an eternal home in heaven (Romans 8:1).

God allows things to happen for a reason. Whether or not we understand His reasons, we must remember that God is good, just, loving, and merciful (Psalm 135:3). Often, bad things happen to us that we simply cannot understand. Instead of doubting God’s goodness, our reaction should be to trust Him. “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight” (Proverbs 3:5–6). We walk by faith, not by sight.

 

“Why does God allow bad things to happen to good people?” Got Questions Ministries https://www.gotquestions.org/bad-things-good-people.html

 

 

Why does God allow the innocent to suffer?

Why does God allow the innocent to suffer?

There is so much suffering in the world, and it is felt by everyone to one degree or another. Sometimes, people suffer as the direct result of their own poor choices, sinful actions, or willful irresponsibility; in those cases, we see the truth of Proverbs 13:15, “The way of the treacherous is their ruin” (ESV). But what about the victims of the treachery? What about the innocent who suffer? Why would God allow that?

It is human nature to try to find a correlation between bad behavior and bad circumstances and, conversely, between good behavior and blessings. The desire to link sin to suffering is so strong that Jesus dealt with the issue at least twice. “As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, ‘Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?’ ‘Neither this man nor his parents sinned,’ said Jesus” (John 9:1–3). The disciples made the mistake of assuming that the innocent would never suffer and assigned personal guilt to the blind man (or to his parents). Jesus corrected their thinking, saying, “This happened so that the works of God might be displayed in him” (verse 3). The man’s blindness was not the result of personal sin; rather, God had a higher purpose for the suffering.

Another time, Jesus commented on the deaths of some people killed in an accident: “Those eighteen who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them—do you think they were more guilty than all the others living in Jerusalem? I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish” (Luke 13:4–5). In this case, Jesus again discounted the notion that tragedy and suffering are the result of personal sin. At the same time, Jesus emphasized the fact that we live in a world full of sin and its effects; therefore, everyone must repent.

This brings us to the consideration of whether such a thing as “the innocent,” technically speaking, even exists. According to the Bible, “all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). Therefore, no one is “innocent” in the sense of being sinless. We were all born with a sinful nature, inherited from Adam. And, as we’ve already seen, everyone suffers, regardless of whether or not the suffering can be linked to a specific personal sin. Sin’s effects permeate everything; the world is fallen, and all creation suffers as a result (Romans 8:22).

Most heartbreaking of all is the suffering of a child. Children are as close to innocence as we ever see in this world, and for them to suffer is truly tragic. Sometimes, innocent children suffer because of the sin of others: neglect, abuse, drunk driving, etc. In those cases, we can definitely say that the suffering is the result of personal sin (just not theirs), and we learn the lesson that our sin always affects others around us. Other times, innocent children suffer because of what some might call “acts of God”: natural disasters, accidents, childhood cancer, etc. Even in those cases, we can say that the suffering is the result of sin, generally speaking, because we live in a sinful world.

The good news is that God did not leave us here to suffer pointlessly. Yes, the innocent suffer (see Job 1–2), but God can redeem that suffering. Our loving and merciful God has a perfect plan to use that suffering to accomplish His threefold purpose. First, He uses pain and suffering to draw us to Himself so that we will cling to Him. Jesus said, “In this world you will have trouble” (John 16:33). Trials and distress are not something unusual in life; they are part of what it means to be human in a fallen world. In Christ we have an anchor that holds fast in all the storms of life, but, if we never sail into those storms, how would we know that? It is in times of despair and sorrow that we reach out to Him, and, if we are His children, we always find Him there waiting to comfort and uphold us through it all. In this way, God proves His faithfulness to us and ensures that we will stay close to Him. An added benefit is that as we experience God’s comfort through trials, we are then able to comfort others in the same way (2 Corinthians 1:4).

Second, He proves to us that our faith is real through the suffering and pain that are inevitable in this life. How we respond to suffering, especially when we are innocent of wrongdoing, is determined by the genuineness of our faith. Those with faith in Jesus, “the pioneer and perfecter of faith” (Hebrews 12:2), will not be crushed by suffering but will come through the trial with their faith intact, having been “tested by fire” so that it “may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 1:7, ESV). The faithful do not shake their fists at God or question His goodness; rather, they “consider it pure joy” (James 1:2), knowing that trials prove that they are truly the children of God. “Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him” (James 1:12).

Finally, God uses suffering to take our eyes off this world and turn them to the next. The Bible continually exhorts us to not get caught up in the things of this world but to look forward to the world to come. The innocent suffer in this world, but this world and all that is in it will pass away; the kingdom of God is eternal. Jesus said, “My kingdom is not of this world” (John 18:36), and those who follow Him do not see the things of this life, good or bad, as the end of the story. Even the sufferings we endure, as terrible as they can be, “are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us” (Romans 8:18).

Could God prevent all suffering? Of course He could. But He assures us that “all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28, KJV). Suffering—even the suffering of the innocent—is part of the “all things” that God is using to accomplish His good purposes, ultimately. His plan is perfect, His character is flawless, and those who trust Him will not be disappointed.

 

“Why does God allow the innocent to suffer?” Got Questions Ministries https://www.gotquestions.org/innocent-suffer.html

Did God create evil?

Did God create evil?

At first it might seem that if God created all things, then evil must have been created by God. However, evil is not a “thing” like a rock or electricity. You cannot have a jar of evil. Evil has no existence of its own; it is really the absence of good. For example, holes are real but they only exist in something else. We call the absence of dirt a hole, but it cannot be separated from the dirt. So when God created, it is true that all He created was good. One of the good things God made was creatures who had the freedom to choose good. In order to have a real choice, God had to allow there to be something besides good to choose. So, God allowed these free angels and humans to choose good or reject good (evil). When a bad relationship exists between two good things we call that evil, but it does not become a “thing” that required God to create it.

Perhaps a further illustration will help. If a person is asked, “Does cold exist?” the answer would likely be “yes.” However, this is incorrect. Cold does not exist. Cold is the absence of heat. Similarly, darkness does not exist; it is the absence of light. Evil is the absence of good, or better, evil is the absence of God. God did not have to create evil, but rather only allow for the absence of good.

God did not create evil, but He does allow evil. If God had not allowed for the possibility of evil, both mankind and angels would be serving God out of obligation, not choice. He did not want “robots” that simply did what He wanted them to do because of their “programming.” God allowed for the possibility of evil so that we could genuinely have a free will and choose whether or not we wanted to serve Him.

As finite human beings, we can never fully understand an infinite God (Romans 11:33-34). Sometimes we think we understand why God is doing something, only to find out later that it was for a different purpose than we originally thought. God looks at things from a holy, eternal perspective. We look at things from a sinful, earthly, and temporal perspective. Why did God put man on earth knowing that Adam and Eve would sin and therefore bring evil, death, and suffering on all mankind? Why didn’t He just create us all and leave us in heaven where we would be perfect and without suffering? These questions cannot be adequately answered this side of eternity. What we can know is whatever God does is holy and perfect and ultimately will glorify Him. God allowed for the possibility of evil in order to give us a true choice in regards to whether we worship Him. God did not create evil, but He allowed it. If He had not allowed evil, we would be worshiping Him out of obligation, not by a choice of our own will.

 

“Did God create evil?” Got Questions Ministries https://www.gotquestions.org/did-God-create-evil.html