Nicu Butoi

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The road forwards that actually goes backwards

I am visiting two sick people who share the same terminal illness. Their suffering is increased by the fact that they are brothers and that a mother’s broken heart lies at the core of it all. One of them is a businessman. The other, a servant of the altar. Their mother’s greatest frustration is that her wish to take some of the suffering...

What do we do with our guilt?

Nothing else on earth judges a person as ruthlessly as their own conscience, and truthfully, nothing else should. The painful process happens before and after the harm has been done.

Suicide: What does the Bible have to say about it?

Every human being, without exception, is a potential suicide. If we look at suicide as a process of self-judgment, condemnation, and execution, every human being walks down this path, at least some of the way.

Why do bad things happen to good people?

The question in the title is a protest which expresses a fair amount of suspicion towards God. It is a barely concealed condemnation of God and His actions, the strange rebellion of a world that sees itself as morally superior to God. People forget Scripture's words in the book of Job: Beware lest wrath entice you into scoffing (Job 36:18, RSV).

If God exists, why would I matter to Him?

If God exists, why would I matter to Him?

Don’t all religions lead to God?

It is convenient, but also superficial, to say that all religions lead to God. However, this attitude is pervasive, and usually lasts only until one has had a chance to see the difference the various religions make in people's lives.

My Friend’s Friend | Friendship and God

You really don't realize what your thoughts about God are until you have nothing left but the conviction expressed in the book of the prophet Jeremiah: My Father, my friend from my youth (Jeremiah 3:4).

Divergence and confluence

My daughter recently posted on our family website a photo of our niece celebrating while holding a beautiful fresh rose, tall and slim, just like her. I looked at the photo for a long time then wrote under it: "Two vines." I pondered some more then wrote, "One of these vines knows why it is here on Earth, but I wonder if the...

How can I become authentic?

"Suppose I go to the Israelites…and they ask me, ‘What is his name?' Then what shall I tell them? God said to Moses, 'I AM who I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: I AM has sent me to you'" (Exodus 3:13-14).

How can I be accepted by God?

Imagine the conversation between God and Adam after Adam had sinned, seen himself naked for the first time (in more ways than one) and hidden from God. To the piercing question, "Why did you hide?" Adam replied, "Because I was naked". Reading between the lines, we detect the subtext: "I hid myself, for one cannot come naked before God."

Why did Jesus have to die for us?

Taken as a whole, this question sounds like a painful cry, springing forth from the depths of the human being in the midst of the darkness of uncertainty and doubt. This question, however, consists of multiple sub-questions. We will address the ones that are most essential and capable to open our minds, in light of the teachings of He who holds all knowledge...

Changing without change

Our greatest, most desperate need today is not the type of change which loses its power over time, but that which leads to our transformation into a permanent Good.

Can I trust the Bible?

The Bible is not the product of an event or a circumstance, but of time, study and especially of the journey that humanity took on its way to its development. But could it be that all the time that has passed has also eroded its relevance? How much confidence can we still have in the Bible, in the 21st century?

Is Jesus the only way to God?

This seemingly innocent question has probably caused more unrest in the last 2000 years than any other. It is, in fact, an echo of the concern of the ancient Jews to determine whether or not Israel was God's only people on earth. It also represents the echo of history that has witnessed wars born of the desire to legitimise a supreme deity.

How do I know God exists?

You must picture me alone in that room in Magdalen night after night, feeling, whenever my mind lifted even for a second from my work, the steady, unrelenting approach of Him whom I so earnestly desired not to meet. That which I greatly feared had at last come upon me. In the Trinity Term of 1929 I gave in, and admitted that God...