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Rob Bell quotes (showing 1-30 of 255)

“The moment God is figured out with nice neat lines and definitions, we are no longer dealing with God.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“What we do comes out of who we believe we are.”
Rob Bell, Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality
“Our tendency in the midst of suffering is to turn on God. To get angry and bitter and shake our fist at the sky and say, "God, you don't know what it's like! You don't understand! You have no idea what I'm going through. You don't have a clue how much this hurts."

The cross is God's way of taking away all of our accusations, excuses, and arguments.

The cross is God taking on flesh and blood and saying, "Me too.”
Rob Bell
“It’s easy to take off your clothes and have sex. People do it all the time. But opening up your soul to someone, letting them into your spirit, thoughts, fears, future, hopes, dreams… that is being naked.”
Rob Bell
“If the gospel isn't good news for everybody, then it isn't good news for anybody. And this is because the most powerful things happen when the church surrenders its desire to convert people and convince them to join. It is when the church gives itself away in radical acts of service and compassion, expecting nothing in return, that the way of Jesus is most vividly put on display. To do this, the church must stop thinking about everybody primarily in categories of in or out, saved or not, believer or nonbeliever. Besides the fact that these terms are offensive to those who are the "un" and "non", they work against Jesus' teachings about how we are to treat each other. Jesus commanded us to love our neighbor, and our neighbor can be anybody. We are all created in the image of God, and we are all sacred, valuable creations of God. Everybody matters. To treat people differently based on who believes what is to fail to respect the image of God in everyone. As the book of James says, "God shows no favoritism." So we don't either.”
Rob Bell
“Love is giving up control. It’s surrendering the desire to control the other person. The two—love and controlling power over the other person—are mutually exclusive. If we are serious about loving someone, we have to surrender all the desires within us to manipulate the relationship.”
Rob Bell, Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality
“Why blame the dark for being dark? It is far more helpful to ask why the light isn’t as bright as it could be.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“Agape doesn't love somebody because they're worthy.

Agape makes them worthy by the strength and power of its love.

Agape doesn't love somebody because they're beautiful.

Agape loves in such a way that it makes them beautiful.”
Rob Bell, Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality
tags: love
“Freedom is not having everything we crave, it's being able to go without the things we crave and being OK with it. ”
Rob Bell
“Because with every action, comment, conversation, we have the choice to invite Heaven or Hell to Earth.”
Rob Bell
“It takes quite a spine to turn the other cheek. It takes phenomenal fortitude to love your enemy. It takes firm resolve to pray for those who persecute you. (with reference to Matthew 5)”
Rob Bell
“Missions then is less about the transportation of God from one place to another and more about the identification of a God who is already there [...] You see God where others don't. And then you point him out. So the issue isn't so much taking Jesus to people who don't have him, but going to a place and pointing out to the people the creative, life-giving God who is already present in their midst. ”
Rob Bell
“Your job is the relentless pursuit of who God made you to be. And anything else you do is sin and you need to repent of it.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“God has spoken, and everything else is commentary.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“Most of the Bible is a history told by people living in lands occupied by conquering superpowers. It is a book written from the underside of power. It’s an oppression narrative. The majority of the Bible was written by a minority people living under the rule and reign of massive, mighty empires, from the Egyptian Empire to the Babylonian Empire to the Persian Empire to the Assyrian Empire to the Roman Empire.

This can make the Bible a very difficult book to understand if you are reading it as a citizen of the the most powerful empire the world has ever seen. Without careful study and reflection, and humility, it may even be possible to miss central themes of the Scriptures.”
Rob Bell, Jesus Wants to Save Christians: A Manifesto for the Church in Exile
“Love demands freedom. It always has, and it always will. We are free to resist, reject, and rebel against God's ways for us. We can have all the hell we want.”
Rob Bell, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived
“Salvation is the entire universe being brought back into harmony with its maker.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“The danger is that in reaction to abuses and distortions of an idea, we'll reject it completely. And in the process miss out on the good of it, the worth of it, the truth of it.”
Rob Bell, Sex God: Exploring the Endless Connections Between Sexuality and Spirituality
“As we experience this love, there is a temptation at times to become hostile to our earlier understandings, feeling embarrassed that we were so "simple" or "naive," or "brainwashed" or whatever terms arise when we haven't come to terms with our own story. These past understandings aren't to be denied or dismissed; they're to be embraced. Those experiences belong. Love demands that they belong. That's where we were at that point in our life and God met us there. Those moments were necessary for us to arrive here, at this place at this time, as we are. Love frees us to embrace all of our history, the history in which all things are being made new.”
Rob Bell, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived
tags: god, love, past
“Love Wins”
Rob Bell
“Christian' makes a poor adjective”
Rob Bell
“Whether we are reading the Bible for the first time or standing in a field in Israel next to a historian and an archaeologist and a scholar, the Bible meets us where we are. That is what truth does”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“Everybody is following somebody. Everybody has faith in something and somebody. We are all believers.”
Rob Bell
“Jesus is God's way of refusing to give up his dream for the world.”
Rob Bell
“If the gospel isn't good news for everybody, then it isn't good news for anybody.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“Jesus is bigger than any one religion. He didn't come to start a new religion, and he continually disrupted whatever conventions or systems or establishments that existed in his day. He will always transcend whatever cages and labels are created to contain and name him, especially the one called "Christianity.”
Rob Bell
“[The Bible] has to be interpreted. And if it isn’t interpreted, then it can’t be put into action. So if we are serious about following God, then we have to interpret the Bible. It is not possible to simply do what the Bible says. We must first make decisions about what it means at this time, in this place, for these people.”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith
“As obvious as it is, then, Jesus is bigger than any one religion.

He didn't come to start a new religion, and he continually disrupted whatever conventions or systems or establishments that existed in his day. He will always transcend whatever cages and labels are created to contain him, especially the one called 'Christianity'.”
Rob Bell, Love Wins: A Book About Heaven, Hell, and the Fate of Every Person Who Ever Lived
“When we deny the spiritual dimension to our existence, we end up living like animals. And when we deny the physical, sexual dimension to our existence, we end up living like angels. And both ways are destructive, because God made us human.”
Rob Bell
“Think about some of the words that are used in these kinds of discussions, one of the most common being the phrase “open-minded.” Often the person with spiritual convictions is seen as close-minded and others are seen as open-minded. What is fascinating to me is that at the center of the Christian faith is the assumption that this life isn’t all there is. That there is more to life than the material. That existence is not limited to what we can see, touch, measure, taste, hear, and observe. One of the central assertions of the Christian worldview is that there is “more” – Those who oppose this insist that this is all there is, that only what we can measure and observe and see with our eyes is real. There is nothing else. Which perspective is more “closed-minded?” Which perspective is more “open?”
Rob Bell, Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith

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Velvet Elvis: Repainting the Christian Faith Velvet Elvis
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