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Let's have a polite discussion of religious beliefs

  1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
    Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago

    Possible?  Interesting?  Shortest thread ever?

    I was raised in a conservative Christian family, but no longer refer to myself as a Christian.  I am agnostic, meaning I live in a world full of possibilities; many questions few answers.

    I am interested in learning how people who know that their conclusions regarding religion encompass a universal truth have gotten to that point.

    1. Pamda Man profile image60
      Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I didn't understand this part. But yeah, why not? Just keep Mr. Usman out of the way. smile

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
        Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Many posters have stated that their particular religious beliefs, or non-belief, are truths that should be accepted by all.  How did they come to this realization?  A book?  An event?

        1. Pamda Man profile image60
          Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Ah, I understand now.

          My atheism has something probably to do with the Bible. I found too many illogical sentences in it. But after some thought, I find myself in a paradox because, as I said in my hub, I cannot use false statement to support my view. The Bible is false statement because I do not believe in it. But then I stuck with my atheism and discovered science. I found science very logical. Everything had a reason.

          Probably the biggest reason for my atheism is that God never transformed into matter in front of me. Some people say that God does not need non believers to believe. And I just get sick of this shhit (Really, no offence). I've heard people get miracles from God, and then I ask, why are there so many people suffering in the world? And I ask again, why do those people who suffer still believe in him? I find this really intriguing. And that is why I wrote a hub on religion.

          http://hubpages.com/hub/Why-do-people-b … n-religion

      2. candice5 profile image61
        candice5posted 7 years ago in reply to this

        and squidward

    2. 0
      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I would like to meet a person who is religious, and thinks there is a universal truth. I have only met peopel who think they are saved and everyone else is going to hell.
      sorry, this did not answer  your question, but I second your motion....

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
        Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        It sounds to me like you have met people who think they know a universal truth.   They believe that they and others with their beliefs will live forever with God, while others with different beliefs are condemned.

        Maybe your point was about "Universalism", the belief that all people, regardless of belief are destined for heaven.

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          dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          oh, I see.
          seems your getting more reasons why people gave up on religion then why they beleive. thats too bad.
          Yes, I have definately "met" people who think all others are condemned. I am condemned now too.
          I want to point out a thing I was taught, not sure what I think about it now, but its a belief I dont see many people here mentioning.
          about "if there is a god, why all the bad?"
          basically..God made everything. He gave humans free will. They exercised thier free will, to do the one thing they were forbidden to do, in a sense they said...like rebellious teenagers.."I dont need you God! I will make my own decisons."
          It hurt God greatly, but like a parent would, he let them go. He gave them guidelines for life..the Bible..and said "ok. do it on your own then." So we have a predetermined amount of tiem to try and live our lives without God doign anything. Eventually, hes gonna step in and sya "see now? you do need me."
          anywya...thats what I was raised with...

      2. glendoncaba profile image82
        glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        The universal truth is love.  Love has two sides: justice and mercy.  God's character is merciful and longsuffering.  At some point every government including the divine government allows justice to take its natural course.

        Because of love we have free will.  God does not force.

        Because of love we have forgiveness.

        There are millions of christians who do not subscribe to the view that everyone else is going to hell. Hell is a matter of what you sow is what you reap. 

        the 10 commandments law is a law of love.  They express love for God and love for humanity.

        The christian gospel pictures a loving Saviour inviting you to come for pardon and power to be overcomers.

        1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
          Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Justice includes punishment.  Is punishment an act of love?

          1. glendoncaba profile image82
            glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Discipline is an act of love.  Ask any parent or teacher.

            Punishment in this discussion is more like you reap what you sow.
            Punishment of final destruction is inevitable because sin is self-destructive and could not be allowed to continue in the new earth.  Do you want murder and death in paradise?

            Yet ..."God is not willing that any should perish"

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            dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            do you have kids?
            REALLY not being a jerk here. But I would have to say..absolutely 100 percent, punishment is an act of love.
            I do not mean arbitrary beatings, but an actual giving of results to an action. like, if a baby puts something in a light socket. You slap their hand, not hard, not abusive, just enough so it stings so they dont do it agian.. to keep them safe. see?

            1. Pamda Man profile image60
              Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Actually, since the kid has suffered from the shock already, he already learnt his lesson and won't ever do it again. Beating him wouldn't be nice. And once you beat him, he will be adapted to it, and in the future, when he does something, he will wait for you to beat him. If you know what I mean.

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                dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                ok. sorry, I meant BEFORE the fork actually goes in to the socket, becuase babies under the age of one dont understand..no...hit his/her hand just hard enough to make them drop the fork. this hurts less then an electric shock, and next time they have a fork, they will not put it in the socket. clearly, I would not hit a kid after they got shocked!! sheesh..that would not be punishment, just mean. If my baby got electricly shocked, I would scoop them up and hug them and take them to the hospital to make sure nothing was damaged...I meant to slap their hand to prevent the shock!!!!!! I never said beat....trust me...I know all about beatings...

            2. Eaglekiwi profile image76
              Eaglekiwiposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Our word discipline actually comes from the word Disciple, which means to teach and intruct. smile

              If Punishment doesnt include justice, then I would consider it unjust and unmerciful

              I come from a family of nine children and discipline was our security , we knew exactly where the boundaries and consequences were ( didnt stop us trying to overstep them ,mind you ) lol but they were there to protect , like God laws IMO.

            3. Ron Montgomery profile image60
              Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              No kids, just cats 'n dogs.  My question was genuine, no particular answer anticipated.  You gave good examples of loving punishments.

      3. ledefensetech profile image80
        ledefensetechposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        There are universal truths out there.  They surround us, all you have to do is open your eyes.  Gnostic Christianity was one of the ones branded as heretical at the Council of Nicaea but one of the interesting parts of their theology was the belief that there is secret knowledge that you have to dig for in order to understand.  It's my belief that the Church Fathers didn't want to encourage people to dig for truth because that would expose the inconsistencies in their theology.  It is interesting to note that some of the greatest Enlightenment thinkers were trained by Jesuit Priests.  So there is something to religion, it's just not what most people think.  You have to dig deep.

    3. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Can you keep it polite?

    4. Mark Knowles profile image59
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Interesting. Lets see if I can keep it polite. smile

      I was raised Church of England. My Grandfather was a verger for one of the London churches. High church - which for those of you who are not familiar - is as close as protestants are allowed to get to Catholicism - lots of golden idols and extended three hour services etc.

      I was sent off to church boarding school for being a naughty boy and was "encouraged," to study the bible, go to church every morning, hours of "divinity," every week - including homework, which was a bit of a shock, especially as the punishment for not doing it was a good thrashing with a cane.

      Luckily, the priest at the school was "having some doubts," about the whole thing and was pretty open minded to discussions that centered around the validity of the bible as being the "word of a god."

      The simple fact is - if you read the good book, without having taken a "leaf of faith," it doesn't really make any sense.

      But, if you can (as I did) discard the notion of an external god, it makes perfect sense. No having to worry about the illogicality of Adam and Eve being actual people. No cognitive dissonance in seeing evidence in front of your eyes that we were not "created," but rather evolved. None of that stuff.

      Now - as to absolutes. I do not see the bible as containing any absolutes, because I read it differently to those who believe that Jesus was an actual person and it is necessary to accept this to go to heaven.

      If you instead imagine that all the characters in the bible (including jesus and god) are actually not real people - but instead they are aspects of one's own personality, then it starts to make more sense. Which is what I think the intention was of the original writers.

      Pretty polite huh? big_smile

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
        Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Very. More importantly it was informative. Which original writers are you referring to?  OT and NT ?  Or just certain books?

        1. Mark Knowles profile image59
          Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          The whole thing. As far as I am concerned, the entire book is an attempt to explain things we either did not then, or do not now understand, and to explain the human condition.

          Who hasn't felt like Jesus when they did something selfless, or felt like the beggar in the good Samaritan parable, or any of the other characters at some time or another?

          1. mobilephone guide profile image60
            mobilephone guideposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            funny thing is. try reading the Bible as a psychological book. criticize and observe the people and how they think and interact. it's interesting.

    5. 60
      Kimfredposted 7 years ago in reply to this
    6. 60
      sxr24kposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I was once a devoted christian, I went to youth group, was there every Sunday for Praise and Worship, now I really dont believe that there is a Divine entity who is waiting for us at the end of our life.  I really believe now that we are really here by chance, and things happen at radom. I went through so many hard times while I was a christian and still do now, and unfortunately, the only thing that the Christian church can offer is prayer, Im still waiting for those prayers to help me in mine and my family's life. This is a great and very sad topic for me.

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
        Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        After rejecting the idea of a divine power that has control of your destiny, do you feel that you have the power to affect the hard times that have befallen you or are you at the mercy of randomness?

    7. mohitmisra profile image60
      mohitmisraposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I read a lot after getting enlightened and came to the understanding that man since ages has been having this experience of making contact with god.Spiritual books gave me a lot of solace as I was unable to talk to anyone about my experience without being called crazy.The only difference is the language to describe this revelation such as satori or samadhi. Then  they all describe this super entity as the Light . smile

    8. 60
      lelananhposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Thanks for the suggestion, I wish it had worked.


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      1. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Couldn't you find it? or is the link bad? I will take a look, thank you.
        This is the main link, http://www.bltc.com/
        sorry, i sent you to the wrong page!

      2. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this
    9. 60
      lelananhposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Life is too short to be serious, laugh it up.



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  2. Colebabie profile image59
    Colebabieposted 7 years ago

    Good luck Ron. smile

    My father was raised Jewish, but it was forced and he never believed in it. Now, no religion for him.

    My mother was raised Catholic, but kinda half-assed. She believes in God, but does not practice any religion.

    Me, agnostic. I've researched some religions, been to churches, temples, etc. But they're all too closed in for me, and I don't believe in what they teach. There is no way that only one religion is "correct", which is why it's a personal thing. My parents let us make our own choices. I wrote a hub called "My Lack of Religion" I've gotten some interesting comments, mostly positive.

  3. 0
    pgrundyposted 7 years ago

    I'm agnostic I guess. I was raised Catholic and struggled with that mightily--finally let it go in my mid 40s. Looked into Buddhism, learned a lot, didn't join that either.

    I'm not a joiner.

    For me, the most honest answer is, I don't know. I respect mystery more than certainty. There's way more we don't know than there are things that we do know. I'd rather just acknowledge that than pretend to understand what I don't understand.

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Is there any conceivable event that could solve the great mysteries?  If a ghostly image appeared to you in the middle of the night claiming to have the answers would you: Listen?  Assume you were dreaming?  Check your meds?

      1. 0
        pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I had a near death experience and 'saw God'. If that didn't do it, I guess nothing will.

        It's not an easy discussion, but I understand where I am with it perfectly. You know these forums. It's not an ideal place to get into it.

        Muslims believe that you should never show an image of God--or some such thing--that's what I understand. My feelings about it are similar to that. I can't understand God, I'm partial, not big enough. Anything I say about God will be a perversion of what God is.

        Does that make sense? The thing is, it makes sense to me and that's what matters. I'm the person I have to live with. smile

        1. Pamda Man profile image60
          Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          pgrundy, what was your near-death experience?

          1. 0
            pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Just the standard pop out the top of yer head into a brilliant all-know all-loving timeless living light.

            Same old, same old. big_smile

        2. Ron Montgomery profile image60
          Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          It makes perfect sense to me.  The personalization of your truth is what I find interesting.

    2. marinealways24 profile image62
      marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I must say, this is one of the most humble and brilliant comments I have ever seen on hubpages. Not only because I fully agree with it, but because it's humble and realistic. Thank You for posting this.

      1. 0
        pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Wow, that was nice of you to say that. Thanks.

        Usually these religious discussions go south pretty fast. So far so good. smile

  4. jenblacksheep profile image85
    jenblacksheepposted 7 years ago

    I was brought up Jewish and just kind of assumed that it was all true. When I was a teenager (around 15 or 16) I started questioning things. Even through my childhood I kind of disbelieved some of the things religion told me, but very quickly decided that if God was all loving he would just accept that.

    To be honest I hated my childhood. There was nothing especially bad about it. It was just dull and boring and I felt very restricted by religion. More importantly than religion I am of the opinion that everyone should try and be happy and I couldnt that reconcile that with my miserable childhood and religion.

    In the end I ditched religion and God and decided it was more important to make myself happy. I couldnt see how there could ever be a God and IF there was he would surely understand my need to be happy especially since I don't hurt other people in the process.

    I am very interested in religion though. I like arguing about it and learning about other people's experiences.

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I had many Jewish friends during my childhood, and my interactions with them had much to do with my rejection of Conservative Christianity.  I was taught that my Jewish friends, who of course had not accepted my savior, were destined to burn in Hell.  I decided I would rather burn with them than spend eternity at the feet of the god who condemned them.

  5. jenblacksheep profile image85
    jenblacksheepposted 7 years ago

    Condemned to burn in hell by an all loving God of course!

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Yes, but there are Hubbers who believe in this concept, and even though I don't, I am interested in knowing about the path that led them there.

    2. Jerami profile image79
      Jeramiposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I am sometimes asked if I am a Christian. The answer depends upon their defination of what that is. I do not want to be grouped into the religous defination either. I do believe in God and the son, We can have a relationship with the father and not be a member of any group

      1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
        Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Do you believe that salvation is only possible through Christ?

        1. Eaglekiwi profile image76
          Eaglekiwiposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I believe in the Bible ,I know it has  been through many hands and consquently has flaws. Not perfect by any means. But its message to me offered hope ,when I had none,and trust me I read and observed many different people from afar and close up.

          In the Bible it states that Jesus Christ is the ONLY WAY to God.

          "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved." (Acts 4:12)

          I have been to different churches ,some one visit ,others months.
          It dooesnt take too long to know the difference between geunine caring people and fake wanna be's.

          Hey thanks Ron , this is looking like to be the coolest thread ,thumbs up smile

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            dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            see..this is my point about faith in God, not the same as religion....people mess things up.
            nowhere does the bible say you have to do anyhting, besides accept Jesus' sacrifce, as a gift. say thank you..
            all the rest of it, all the "rules" are just God sayong..hey, if you eat raw pork your gonna get trichinosis...at least this is the view I have come  to now. maybe...

            1. Eaglekiwi profile image76
              Eaglekiwiposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Yea tradional mumbo jumbo, some of them are either freaky or funny lol

        2. Jerami profile image79
          Jeramiposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I believe that God is God and he can have as many diffrent covenants with as many diffrent peoples as he chooses with or without my aproval. Maybe this is why we are not to judge others? We don't know all of the facts. When we do know it all, maybe then it will be OK for us to judge.  I don't want to be judge!! too much responsability

        3. Born Again 05 profile image79
          Born Again 05posted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Yes I do believe that salvation is only possible through Christ.Your question is sincere and I'm answering you with that same sincerity. I have written my testimony of how I came to that conclusion in a hub called How I Met The Savior. The Lord changed my heart. I do hope you'll just take the time to read it. It certainly answers the first quetion you asked.

    3. 0
      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      think of it this way
      hell maybe was translated incorrectly. in some parts of the Bible, hell simply means the grave. So, if hes like our father, if we do worng, we get punished. like, if I tell my kids..if you stand in the street your going to get hit by a truck. Am I hitting them with the truck? Am I being mean? Or I am just saying what will happen if they do that...
      besides, the Bible has plenty of parts where it says things like...god is a jelaous god..exacting judgemnt...all that. look what he did to soddham and gomorrah!
      All I am saying, is, these are some of the things people truly believe, and why. Hope that sorta made sense.

  6. Ron Montgomery profile image60
    Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago

    dm,
    Yes, I think we could have anticipated a polite discussion among agnostics.  The test will come when the atheists and the strongly religious join in.  Can we keep it civil or are strongly held views incompatible with civility?

    1. 0
      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      in my experience....no. sorry. you have no idea the things that have been said to me in my life becuase I questioned a belief...
      either for God or for evolution...

  7. glendoncaba profile image82
    glendoncabaposted 7 years ago

    The great problem is free will.

    take away free will then we would all be obedient robots.

    Thats what we would love but God's government is based on love and love does not force.

  8. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    This is good. No fires. So far so good. smile Perhaps Mr. Usman died?

  9. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    Ah I see. My bad. smile

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      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      typing is way harder then talking face to face. no way to see all the body language and then there is such a huge cultural differnece here...  smile

  10. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    I prefer typing than talking face to face. Because I, like pandas, hide. big_smile Really need a chatroom here....

    1. 0
      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      thats basically what this is....

  11. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    No, I mean a real-time chatroom.

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      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      write that in the idea? sugggestions? forum.

  12. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    Yea I did.

    Hey have you figured out the other two speakers yet, for An Abrupt Arrival?

    1. 0
      dennisemattposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      argh. you and your riddles...I quit thinking about it when you  said you were joking...come on!!! did I get even one right? or is there no converation? YOU ARE A TROLL!!!!! I will never get over the bridge.  smile

      1. Pamda Man profile image60
        Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        You got all 4 correct, 2 more to go. big_smile You are better than my friends already, they only got sun correct.

  13. glendoncaba profile image82
    glendoncabaposted 7 years ago

    The Jewish Day of Atonement rituals of Yom Kippur demonstrate the need for purgations and mediation.  Both provided by a loving God.

    The scapegoat ritual shows that sin goes back on head of deceiver.  Sin in the person of azazel is cast into the wilderness shows sin must be removed from the camp of God at final judgement. 

    The cross of Jesus deals with purgations. The burning hell removes sin forever in order for earth to be renewed.

    That is love.  The universal truth you are looking for.

    The OT has many great object lessons of salvation.   

    Love gives the planet a second chance.

    BTW the scientific scenario also predicts a fiery cleansing when sun goes super nova.  Either way there is fire.  Choose which scenario you believe.

    1. Pamda Man profile image60
      Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      It's not fire. It's gas. wink

      1. glendoncaba profile image82
        glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Fire.  gas.  Nuclear fusion. fission.  same endgame isnt it.  solar system destroys itself is the final scene of evolution.  Right?

        But please I'm open to expanding my scientific understanding.

        So the idea of a burning hell is not that strange.  thats all I'm saying. 

        what do you think about the lessons from Yom Kippur?

        1. Pamda Man profile image60
          Pamda Manposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Even if our earth ends, there is still other solar systems out there.

          1. glendoncaba profile image82
            glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Of course.

            But we are on planet earth dear boy.  And we are mortal.  Trapped in time and space.   

            Jesus will return to give immortality.

            Cute how you guys have a way to ignore something as fundamental as the logical beauty of the sanctuary system mentioned above.
            Yom Kippurim took care of the question of sin with detailed rituals which led to catharsis giving hope to the nation of Israel that they were made right with God for one more year.

            A great object lesson in the universal questions of love, sin, forgiveness, and judgment.

            I think I'll do a thread on Yom Kippurim.

            1. Randy Godwin profile image93
              Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Just wondering, how do you know the solar system will destroy itself and not be destroyed by something else?

              1. glendoncaba profile image82
                glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                I dont.

                Just quoting your theories that also predict evaporation of planet in the end one way or other.  I'm open to the latest theory. 

                Strange that both sides expect similar apocalyptic climax.
                Makes you think.

    2. Make  Money profile image72
      Make Moneyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      The Catholic belief in purgatory comes from the word purgation.  It's similar to dennisematt's example of slapping a child's wrist.  They are being purified in purgatory but on the way to heaven.  We believe only saints go directly to heaven without going to purgatory first.  The idea of purgatory is actually supported by quite a few Bible verses.  Here's a Q & A on purgatory.

      1. 0
        sandra rinckposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        It's called Hell.  Catholics will go to hell first to be refined by the fire before you can enter heaven.  lol 

        Sounds like the Muslims belief too.

  14. jenblacksheep profile image85
    jenblacksheepposted 7 years ago

    Being brought up Jewish and having been to the synagogue countless times I can guarentee that the majority of people that go to the synagogue on Yom Kippur are there because tradition dictates they should and because they feel they ought to. I doubt many of them know anything about the prayers or really believe that what they are doing is going to make a difference in their after lives (or whatever you want to call it).

  15. Ron Montgomery profile image60
    Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago

    G, you have claimed a knowledge of a universal truth:

    "The cross of Jesus deals with purgations. The burning hell removes sin forever in order for earth to be renewed.

    That is love.  The universal truth you are looking for."

    How did you come by this truth?  Are the condemned in Hell being shown love?

  16. 0
    ralwusposted 7 years ago

    Isn't your request an oxymoron?

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      No, just a regular moron.

  17. Make  Money profile image72
    Make Moneyposted 7 years ago

    No it's not eternal like hell Sandra.

    1. 0
      sandra rinckposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      but you still go there. to hell that is.

      1. Make  Money profile image72
        Make Moneyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        No smile

        1. 0
          sandra rinckposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          yes smile

          1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
            Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Sandra, in the spirit of this thread, could you please edit your recent posts?

            1. 0
              sandra rinckposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              What do you mean?  The bible says that everyone who dies goes to Haides, haides it the term for Hell which is a term for the grave, therefor they all go to hell. big_smile

  18. Make  Money profile image72
    Make Moneyposted 7 years ago

    Let's have a polite discussion of religious beliefs. smile

  19. 60
    Kimfredposted 7 years ago

    I have also intrested in from where people get their faith. I believe in God but figure he doesn't have much to do with me. I am fascinated by true believers I just don't understand them.

    Kim DeOliveira

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      That's an interesting statement.  Do you mean that God has forgotten you? Or perhaps that he has little influence on your daily life?

    2. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      It helps when you see the world as the scene of a great controversy between good and evil.  Some religions see good and evil as necessary complements.  The Christian religion sees good and evil as polar opposites.  The problem is that some believers see themselves as good and all others as evil.  This bad attitude has turned off many persons.  And they dump on all believers in fora like this.

      God is good.  We are all born evil though with great potential for good.  Religion is really about how we choose good or evil.  In the gospel of Christ, God actually comes seeking us in the person and ministry of Jesus Christ.

  20. Davinagirl3 profile image61
    Davinagirl3posted 7 years ago

    Whenever I went to church, as a child, I always wanted to raise my hand and ask questions.  My mom used to spend the whole time telling me that I couldn't ask questions.  It didn't take me long to realize that church wasn't very diplomatic.  I still have a lot of questions.

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      You raised your hand during sermons?

    2. 0
      sandra rinckposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I always wanted to be part of the choirs but was never accepted for some reason.  Then when I was finally allowed in, I quit. lol

      1. Davinagirl3 profile image61
        Davinagirl3posted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Not being accepted at church is a hard pill to swallow.  I don't blame you for quitting.

  21. 0
    pgrundyposted 7 years ago

    There's a difference between faith and religion. You can ditch your religion for excellent reasons and retain your faith. Lots of people do that.

    1. Davinagirl3 profile image61
      Davinagirl3posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I believe I have done it!

  22. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    I am according to the bible still a Christian. I am not. The bible portrays god as jealous, vengeful, and petty. In my understanding these are human weaknesses, and I am unlikely to worship something with less morals than many humans.
    Also I do not expect to be threatened by a god. The threats against non believers is particularly obnoxious, as it makes no allowance for those who will never see a bible. I could go on to describe the hundreds of threats made by "God" but suffice to say, I believe none of it.

    1. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Great to see your smile again.

      Yes the bible makes allowance for those who dont hear about jesus.  I'll come back after a family meeting to explain the text from romans about the times of ignorance.  Her majesty needs me now for a family meeting. smile

      1. Randy Godwin profile image93
        Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Please Glendoncaba, no scripture or your take on it.  And something else I'm curious about, do the people in your church know you are posting on this site and do they read your posts?

        1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
          Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          I am interested in what he has to say.

        2. glendoncaba profile image82
          glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          1.  Someone made a statement about the bible.  Not me.  I simply allowed the bible to defend itself.  So you have a quarrel with the bible.  I did not interpret it.  Just read the text which by the way is Acts 17:30 and not Romans.  This is a thread about religious beliefs so there is no rule against the bible.  Why do you have a problem when i quote from the bible, yet you are happy when the agnostics accuse the bible of misleading or discouraging them. 

          2.  I do not write anything here that is in conflict with the fundamental teachings of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.

          http://www.adventist.org/beliefs/fundamental/index.html

          Implicit in your comment is a wise observation.  If anything it is not the practice of my church to engage in religious debates, as I said elsewhere we prefer to do personal bible studies.  So you are correct with one concern, it is pretty unusual for us.  Not recommended.  We prefer to go into homes and on streets and help people and tell them about Jesus.  You are lucky. big_smile

          Thats one of the reasons I dont post more.  big_smile

          New media is in some way the homes and streets of the digital generation so I will see if even here I am making any headway for Jesus.  I am willing to participate in polite discussions.

          I view this forum as an exercise in cross cultural communication and I am willing to learn and share. Brave new world.

          Why exactly are you concerned about my being here?

          1. Randy Godwin profile image93
            Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Firstly, I have no concerns with you being here and this shouldn't make any difference anyway.  The problem I have with your posts is it seem as if you are using this forum to preach.  We all have the ability to read the Bible or any other religious or atheistic books we please.  You post scripture and then give YOUR take on it.  This is okay in church where some are willing to hear it.  But your interpretation of what the scripture means is just that, your interpretation. 

            A suggestion, just post the chapter and verse of the passage you wish to use and let each decide for him or herself.  That way those of us who do not wish to read this stuff again can just skip on to where something interesting lies.

            I have no doubt there are those who may enjoy reading scripture here but I don't understand, with millions of bibles available, why put the same scriptures on this site?  What is your purpose, do you really expect to save souls here?

            1. glendoncaba profile image82
              glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Why dont you complain when other persons quote scripture in order to bash scripture? 

              If it is polite to quote bible in order to bash the bible then it is OK to quote bible to give another perspective that believes that the bible is the inspired word of God. 

              Same way the other fellow quotes Koran.

              Or Vedas.

              Or Torah.

              Or Bhagavad gita.

              Anyway if anyone wants to join in a discussion addressing the universal truth of salvation that believes in quoting the bible then:

              http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/18537

              1. Randy Godwin profile image93
                Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                I really do not place much faith in whoever quotes the bible.  It is only a book written by common men.  Unless you can prove the authors were inspired by god your statement is useless.  And who decided the universal truth of salvation?  Have you polled everyone in the universe?  I don't think so.  You have decided there is a god and can't rest until others think the same as you.  No one chose you to tell others what to believe, you chose yourself.  This is what I detest about religious fanatics and their arrogance.

                1. glendoncaba profile image82
                  glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                  You guys get all hot under the collar without reading the original post:



                  Encompass a universal truth.

                  Naturally most replies will say something like this:

                  "there is no universal truth except we dont know everything there is to know so all religions are wrong."  OR "the god of the bible is a wrong belief and FSM is a better god".

                  Then along comes glendoncaba and says wait a minute, suppose most of christian civilisation was taught incorrectly because of politics and greed.  Suppose the bible really portrays a God of love.  Furthermore suppose the post reformation period is the closest we have come in christian history to understanding salvation by faith.  Hey just suppose?  maybe we could have a discussion about the universal truth that I have arrived at:  that God is love. 

                  Just suppose? 

                  You could quote Voltaire and all the philosophers to state your arguments, Sartre, Marx etc.

                  But Christians must be able to state the source of their arguments.

                  Otherwise this would be a philosophy forum and not a religion forum.  And I am no expert in philosophy.

      2. glendoncaba profile image82
        glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Now where were we.  Yes someone says the bible makes no allowance for those who never see a bible.  That was not Romans by the way the refutation of that is Acts 17:30 from Paul's address at Athens.

        "God overlooked people's former ignorance about these things, but now he commands everyone everywhere to turn away from idols and turn to him."

        1. earnestshub profile image87
          earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Hello again, nice to see you.
          Yes I am familiar with the bible, you may have forgotten.I would rather not quote from religious tomes in reply.
          Suffice to say we do not see the bible in the same way verse for verse.The word is supposedly god, and a literal biblical god could crawl under my carpet and not leave a bump!

          1. glendoncaba profile image82
            glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            I was responding to this statement from you.  Acts 17:30 suggests some mercy for times of ignorance.

            In fact without quoting bible we believe that God judges us based on the light we have received.  Hence the person in pre-Christian culture can only be judged based on how he responded to the revelation of God and love.  When the gospel is heard they you are judged based on your convictions.

            Its not cut and dry.  People are given time to make up their minds hence the word probation. 

            The apparently senseless slaughter in OT was dealing with nations who had been warned and rejected the laws of God.

            To our modern minds the stories are pretty harsh.  Some interpreters prefer to see them as military campaigns in order to palliate the effect.

            1. earnestshub profile image87
              earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Yes I know smile
              I agree, that is an allowance. smile

            2. earnestshub profile image87
              earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              So that gets rid of the old testament? What about the NT? Same old same old...

    2. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      The god represented in the bible is certainly displayed in a less than favorable light making me doubt that his story is autobiographical.  A great many people have read the same stories that you and I have, and have come away with a belief in God as love in it's most perfect form.

  23. Jane@CM profile image59
    Jane@CMposted 7 years ago

    As I've grown older, my beliefs have changed.  I was raised in a strict Catholic church, thought God was to be feared and was so afraid of damnation.  I remember being confirmed, it was horrible, the nuns told us that the bishop would point to us and ask a question & if we answered wrong, we wouldn't be confirmed.  Of course, he didn't ask one of us a question.  I remember nothing about confirmation class either...I think I mentally blocked it out.

    My mom died when I was 17, six months later, her sister (my favorite aunt) died, two months later my fiance dumped me because I was an emotional wreck, shortly thereafter my dad died.  I quit believing all together.  What kind of God would  take all the people who loved me away & leave me alone?

    When I met my husband, who is a Christian, he introduced me to a man I had not met, Jesus.  I do believe now.  I don't believe any longer that God is a horrible awe full God, but I do have a really hard time reading what happens in the Old Testament, frankly - I'm on the fence here, because I do read fear in the Old Testament.

    I want to believe that I am going to Heaven or to a place that is far better than the world we live in now. 

    In all honesty, I'm on the fence about of lot of things written in the Bible.  So why do I believe?  It gives me hope & something to hang onto.

    Sorry - this reply is longer than I thought it would be.

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      You're reply was terrific and given the depths of it's contents I don't see how it could have been made shorter.

      You experienced more pain in a few months than most of us do in a lifetime.  I have yet to lose a close family member and can't begin to understand how you must have felt. 

      You have identified a phenomenon that is of great interest to me.  The "need" to believe.  I think that most people are happier when they believe in a concept like eternal life that is given by a creator even if they cannot logically describe why they believe.  It gives me hope and something to hang onto is to me, a valid answer.

  24. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    Glendocaba, thank you but I am more than familiar with the bible.smile

  25. Haunty profile image83
    Hauntyposted 7 years ago

    I politely admit I've not read this thread. I also admit this is probably the first religious thread I ever wrote in. My religious belief is that there is no God who would appreciate you depending on him/her. If you do so in Heaven you can bear the great banner of shame for eternity. smile

  26. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    That is so, Ron. I have heard many people explain to me why they still believe.

  27. 0
    pgrundyposted 7 years ago

    I don't like this way of framing life as a true/false pop quiz with very high stakes attached to performance. What kind of God would create such a situation? It has always struck me as cruel and perverse. I don't believe God is like that, and if he is like that, I want to be on some other team.

    1. marinealways24 profile image62
      marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      lol Did you steal my words? I'm jk. I do however find it amazing/strange that I share some of your exact same beliefs when I have individual belief as you do.

    2. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Thats why the word grace was invented.  Salvation is not earned.  Free.

      God come after us to save us.  Left to ourselves, we would feel just like you do now.  Left to God, Jesus went to cross to take care of how you feel now and offers you the choice to simply trust in Jesus and obey.

      We cant save ourselves by our performance.  We are saved by faith in the merits of Jesus.  we cant earn our way to heaven.

      1. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        "Left to ourselves, we would feel just like you do now."

        How presumptuous of you to say this!

        1. glendoncaba profile image82
          glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Its not a dreadful multiply choice.  there is a mediator who is on our side.  His name is Jesus.

          Left to ourselves when we hear the hell fire erroneous doctrines we feel discouraged.  I am seeking to share the view that God wants to save us more than see us burn.

          1. 0
            pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            It doesn't feel true to me that's all. I'm not discouraged or afraid of the fire and brimstone doctrines, so I don't feel the need ot be saved. I don't believe God is like this. It's clear though that many people do and that they get something out of it that I don't understand. So I'm not challenging your belief but I don't accept it for myself. Free choice, I can do that. smile

          2. earnestshub profile image87
            earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            No we do not feel anything, the hell and brimstones are what they are. The words of bone ignorant and some may say psychotic men.

      2. marinealways24 profile image62
        marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

        It is much easier to believe anothers reason for the unknown than to debate your individual reasons.

  28. 0
    pgrundyposted 7 years ago

    earnestshub I know what you are getting at here. It's overkill. If God is great and good, why the hard sell? Something is 'off' about that.

    1. earnestshub profile image87
      earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Yes Pam, i agree, something is off about it.You can use religious tomes and their variants to prove or disprove anything. What the bible attempts to desribe is the human condition, as does the Quoran. I prefer the Greek gods, as they are seen as symbolic, representing the same thing through the different gods, and their characteristics. Again each one mirrored in the human Psych.

    2. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      In the life of Jesus we find Him teaching that men had obscured the love of God by painting Him as a stern judge just looking out to see us do something naughty like an unfair parent.

      It's traditions of religious people that obscured the 'truth'.

      Just like in the middle ages it left the masses in darkness until they had the bible in their own language. 

      I know my catholic friend is going to pinch me for my history lesson now.

      I really must take randy's advice and stay out of the forum, when I'm not in trouble with my agnostic friends i have to step on the toes of my orthodox friends. 

      (Yea randy You are right.  This thing is too global to discuss around here and my approach requires hard look at all beliefs as well as history).  Might hurt my cause when folk misunderstand.

      There is a time and place for the truth but i wonder if it is hub forum.

      1. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        smile Maybe not if you claim to know the truth from the bible, it like the quoran has been open to the widest of interpretations and translations.

  29. manlypoetryman profile image68
    manlypoetrymanposted 7 years ago

    Dear ya'll...(I promised myself I would stay out of this topic on hub world-I've been round and round on other post sites).

    Is it quite possible that perhaps an individual is perfectly Ok...within his own religious beliefs...However, like all religions...they are called on...in some manner...to aid and/or help conversions to their particular religion?


    Then...at what point do those that do not believe in that religion become offended...and are they equally offended by everyone's opposite religious beliefs (outside their own)...or are they opposed to hearing only about God more than...let's say thinking that applies only to atheism?

    Just a thought for this (U.S.A.) Saturday morning?

    1. earnestshub profile image87
      earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      For me it is simple. Don't try to ram it down my throat, and I'm OK with it.

      1. 0
        pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Same here. I don't understand what's so hard to understand about that!

        1. manlypoetryman profile image68
          manlypoetrymanposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Done...Pgrundy! Glad to oblige, Mam'...If people recall their bible teachings...God is a God of free will, love...and non-condemnation! (did not spell check condemnation?) Have a great day! (I'm busy today...and about to step away from computer...but will be back...) Later, MPM!

      2. manlypoetryman profile image68
        manlypoetrymanposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Done...Now wasn't that easy, my friend! Now...I can get back to being in last place over at the (redux) post...and staying one step ahead of you...Earnest!

  30. Ron Montgomery profile image60
    Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago

    "We are all born evil though with great potential for good. "

    glendoncaba

    This in my mind is one of the greatest flaws in Christian philosophy.  I believe the concept of original sin is evidence that this religion was created to subjugate people who could be deceived into believing it.  As we are all born evil, through no fault of our own, we must of course be saved by (conveniently) God's spokesmen here on Earth, i.e. the politically powerful church.

    I believe the polar opposite of your statement.

    We are born good, but with great potential for evil.  Who has ever committed a sin at birth or even as an infant?  We cannot sin until we learn to do so.  Eve's supposed sin is further evidence of what I have stated above.  The early church did not want knowledge to spread among the masses, especially women.  These concepts and their forced acceptance under pain of death laid the groundwork for centuries of evil, perpetrated by tyrants, supported by corruptable clergy.

    1. 0
      pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      The thing is though, whatever we believe, we have a choice about whether to push it on others or just go about our business living by the principles that seem right to us. It's not the belief that humans are born bad and need salvation that is a problem, it's the need of so many Christian sects to press that belief on others. I can't see any good reason for doing that. A lot of it, crazy as this may sound, is just manners, just a matter of good manners.

      The reason these religion hubs go south so often, and the reasons religion goes south, is the need of each  one to be the ONLY path, the ONLY truth.

      I think Christianity in the U.S. in modern times has been especially guilty of this, and with the world so scary and confusing right now, this kind of pushy Christianity is getting more and more popular. But it all comes down to this: Manners. Don't get up in your neighbor's business if he's not harming you. smile

    2. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Actually i don't believe in original sin.  Evil nature, evil and depraved tendencies we are born with. We are born in sin but not born sinners.  Thats why I used the word evil instead of sin.  So we are born with evil tendencies which when acted on constitutes sin.

      Augustine taught original sin was sin of entire human race not just Adam.

      Arminius (1560-1609) reacted to teachings of Calvin and said Adam in his original state was fully capable of total and voluntary obedience to God.  Because of sin Adam became destitute of original righteousness and exposed to misery and death.  This infirmity was passed on to his descendants.  As a result without God's help human beings are unable to obey God or attain eternal life.

      The evil tendencies and the sinful state might be called sin but they do not result in guilt and punishment.  The inborn tendencies to evil are only imputed as sin when one consciously and voluntarily decides and acts on them through personal actual sin, in spite of God's grace and power pointing you otherwise.  The responsibility for sin is then the human will.

      This is the Arminian position and largely reflects my theology of sin.  In my opinion.  Hence we don't practice infant baptism, but wait for the person to reach an age of accountability before we baptize.

  31. SparklingJewel profile image65
    SparklingJewelposted 7 years ago

    Now, here is a different take on God...God is and always has been the same, Yesterday, Today and Forever...and all that...it is the minds, hearts and souls of the people that change over time.

    So, its not that God was the fear mongering overlord, but the natural evolution of the people in their perception and actions that caused their own demise.

    I tend to beleive that we create our own reality, we are of God image, so are co-creators with God...we just don't beleive it fully, we are still finding it out.

    For example...During Moses' time it was more like "instant karma" when someone was finally actually given some rules (when Moses came down from the Sinai with the tablets, the people now were fully conscious of thier choice to obey or not. They didn't choose to beleive and some were swallowed up by the earth, some were nearby and came close to death, maybe they were closer to beleiving, just not dead sure they didn't believe like those that were swallowed up. And then there were those that did beleive that were not close to the being swallowed up by the earth in fire and such  (I am remembering the 10 Commandments movie scene from the old TV production from when I was a child.

    Well we know how many times that group of people were in and out of grace with God through the ages...many just weren't getting it firmly and completely...so things kept going that way for ages. Eventually Jesus had to come and show another way.

    My point being that the different cultures and religions were given the same rules/laws from God, they just came out in  words and actions in  different ways according to the cultures.

    So, Actually each older times' religion is just another version of the same story of how to learn to find God within. The Bible is one, the Koran, another, Hinduism another, Tao another and so on.

    So, before and during and after old testament times up till Jesus, it all boils down to learn the laws, obey and you'll be ok, at least be on the path to finding truth and not totally rejecting it, otherwise you create your own demise by not living within the boundaries of safety.

    We are all here to learn the lessons of how to stay in accordance with the Universal order of how things work, to enable us to reunite with God/Creation. We are to be learning the lesson that it is the power of our own consciousness as co-creator with God that causes our own demise or not.

    And when Jesus came it was a grace to help us to try another, additional  way to find God. The human understanding was ready, some were in need to have new understanding because they were stuck at a particular level of not getting it, and some needed new understanding to move even closer to God from where they were. Souls, hearts and minds were evolving.

    1. manlypoetryman profile image68
      manlypoetrymanposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Well Said...Matter of fact...that was Great!

  32. Pamda Man profile image60
    Pamda Manposted 7 years ago

    Join us, and you shall have bamboo. Click here to join us.

  33. jenny88 profile image61
    jenny88posted 7 years ago

    Is the hubs a religous group as there are so many religous questions


    I might start a hub/thread on this

    Jenz

    1. SparklingJewel profile image65
      SparklingJewelposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Hey Jenz, how's it going?

      HubPages is an online writers "place" where anyone can write an article (a hub) about whatever they want. Within HubPages there are forums where members can discuss issues. You happen to be int he religion forum here. There are other forums.

      And yes, you could write a hub (an article) about something religious and others could read it and comment on it,

      OR you could start a thread within a specific forum, where anyone could communicate with you about what your thread is about.

      a hub and a thread are two different things to do on HubPages.
      big_smile   I hope I am perceiving your understanding correctly, if not I apologize. big_smile

  34. Ron Montgomery profile image60
    Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago

    Don't get up in your neighbor's business if he's not harming you.

    pgrundy

    This would make an excellent 11th commandment

    1. 0
      pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      LOL! It will have to be the 12th. I'm pretty sure the 11th is "No pain, no gain." big_smile

  35. Bibowen profile image90
    Bibowenposted 7 years ago

    I chose to follow the Lord when I was young. Throughout my life I have listened to unbelievers give reasons why they don't believe. But I have never heard from them any good reason why I should reject my experience of God as veridical. The Bible talks about a "narrow road" that leads to eternal life and I believe we must follow that road. Jesus said that He was the only way to eternal life. He is our road to God.

    Not everything in life is rationally demonstrable. Some things we think through and some things we accept. I take as a given that there is a God and that He gave His Son as a sacrifice for our sins that we might have the hope of eternal life.

    We see what we want to see in life. The Bible says that if we will seek God, we will find Him. Pascal said that God has given sufficient knowledge of Himself so that we can find Him, yet not so much knowledge so as to make belief compulsive. For the person that wants to know God, God will make himself known to that person.

    1. SparklingJewel profile image65
      SparklingJewelposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      veridical...what does that mean? or what did you mean to spell? I had to look up Pascal, too...a French philosopher, huh, what century?

      1. Bibowen profile image90
        Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        One dictionary says that "veridical" is "Coinciding with future events or apparently unknowable present realities." To use the definition "I take my experience of God as corresponding with unknowable present realities."

        Blaise Pascal (1623–1662) was a French mathematician and philosopher who made major contributions to probability theory.

    2. 0
      pgrundyposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Sorting the world into believers and 'unbelievers' strikes me as arbitrary and rather arrogant. Why would anyone seek to dissuade you from your beliefs? I certainly don't. So why do you presume that because I do not share YOUR beliefs, I am therefore an 'unbeliever'?

      Why not set your beliefs as the standard for your own behavior and your own life and leave judgment of others to God? If indeed there is a mote in my eye, leave that problem to me. You have no way of knowing or understanding where other people stand in relation to God, and in my view it is not your business.

      1. tantrum profile image61
        tantrumposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        You're wasting you time in this guy!   He's been rude in almost all posts  lol

      2. Bibowen profile image90
        Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        As for sorting believers and unbelievers, I am not doing that. I believe they are grouped that way, but I have no way of knowing who is in which category. It's not my scheme of division. If it were up to me, I might arrange it differently. But I believe the scheme is true and I believe it is God's call.

        If you will note the rest of the passage ("mote in my eye") Jesus was telling the Pharisees to take care of their sins so that they could exercise correct judgment.

        But, I believe we can make judgments in matters of religion and that this is moral and right. Your claim that "Why not set your beliefs as the standard for your own behavior and your own life and leave judgment of others to God?" All that we do is predicated on some belief. It seems arbitrary that we would not exercise judgment when it comes to religious matters. Yet, we exercise judgment in other matters (this forum is an example). Such a distinction appears arbitrary.

        I do not accept the premise that religion is merely a personal decision. Faith has a public dimension and it is just as valid to state our experiences in matters of faith as it is in any other. It strikes me as arbitrary that we can't "judge" when it comes to matters of faith but we express our opinions about everything else.

        1. ledefensetech profile image80
          ledefensetechposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Opinions are just that, opinions.  You can't test those over the lifetime of a person.  In order to really understand which opinions are right, you really have to look and see how they've played out historically.  Your belief that religion is a "public" dimension is particularly worrying.  That belief has had a hand in atrocities beyond count, secular and religious. 

          People's beliefs are a personal decision.  We all of us have differing value systems and make decisions according to those value systems.  Those decisions also have consequences.  The smart person will analyze those consequences, identify those values and beliefs that caused those consequences and either continue with the behavior in the case of good consequences or not continue with the behavior if the consequences are not good.

          You, yourself, make decisions based on your value system, which is your right.  You have no right to force those values on another.

          1. Bibowen profile image90
            Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            I would agree with most all you have said here. I agree with what you said that "People's beliefs are a personal decision." But if your point is to say that this is the only expression of religion (that is a private one) then I would say that that is an attempt to suppress religious expression (not physically, of course). The Constitution's First Amendment prohibits Congress from prohibiting the free exercise of religion. The First Amendment assumes that religion will have a public expression and prohibits government suppression.

            As to your final statement, I also agree. No one should seek to coerce belief. 

            I think the first paragraph has some problems. An opinion may not be just an "opinion." When it comes to values, if you were to say "it's wrong to torture children or that the Nazis were wrong to gas the Jews," that's not just an opinion: it's an opinion and it's also right.

            Second, the historical record of an opinion is irrelevant as to the truth of the opinion and I think most epistemologists would agree with that. One tribe may have found it useful to enslave another. However, its usefulness is irrelevant as to the rightness of the opinion. Historical analysis is helpful when considering usefulness; if that's what you are trying to say, I agree. But I don't have to wait for the "march of history" to know that child molestation is wrong.

            Finally, your statement "That belief has had a hand in atrocities beyond count, secular and religious" I think is also true. But beliefs have equally done much good when publicly expressed. That beliefs are publicly expressed is not the problem; the problem is the nature of the belief in whether it is true or not, good or not.

  36. glendoncaba profile image82
    glendoncabaposted 7 years ago

    I'm going to that demonstrates how the universal truth of God's loving provision of salvation is demonstrated in the Hebrew sanctuary with its climax on the Day of Atonement.

    http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/18537

    Such a thread will be a discussion from Torah as well as NT.

  37. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    The meaning of religious books has been discussed by "believers" for thousands of years now. There is no conclusion to draw from any version of them. Think about it. More than 300 different beliefs from studying the same books! Hard to get a pass on that! There is little agreement within religion as to even the basic belief systems they invariably promote, from flat worlders, to "my way or the highway" statements about a particular way to see a god, one thing remains. Dogma.

    1. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Personally I could do without the confusion myself.  The story of the cross of Christ is simple, beautiful, and powerful.  God became man in order to take care of the problem of sin and restore harmony (eventually) in the universe.

      Like the Matrix trilogy Neo has to take into his body the virus of Smith in order to destroy the anomaly in the matrix.  Those Wauchowski brothers are on to something with their fusion of so many philosophies, but using the Judeo Christian concept of catharsis.

      1. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        It is as hard for America to make a non religious structure in a movie story as it is for you to not quote the bible. smile Even though the series starred a local actor, I was less than entranced by the cathartic base. Top marks to the Simpsons though! Very well researched. smile

        1. glendoncaba profile image82
          glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Dont you think it is human to seek catharsis?

        2. glendoncaba profile image82
          glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          But dont you see, Matrix trilogy used concepts from so many sources.  It did not preach.  it is postmodern.  Yet could not escape the human dilemma, the need to deal with evil.

          One of my very early hubs:
          http://hubpages.com/hub/Does-Matrix-Spiritual-Reality

          Warning:  its a little preachy.  Dont read it if you have a problem with Jesus. smile

          1. earnestshub profile image87
            earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            Well that describes me smile the problem with Jesus bit. The feeling for me from the movies were that they preached in the way 90% of this type of movie does.Not very subtle Hollywood....

            1. glendoncaba profile image82
              glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Preachy describes my hub:

              http://hubpages.com/hub/Does-Matrix-Spiritual-Reality

              Not the movie.  The movie is too eclectic to be preachy.

  38. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    It's called indoctrination. There is a natural human tendency to put the blame somewhere else, or hand over your life to someone else... thus religions form, thousands of em!

  39. Randy Godwin profile image93
    Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago

    "You guys get all hot under the collar without reading the original post."


    I certainly am not hot under the collar, so you are mistaken yet again.  I'm trying to understand why you feel you must convince others you are right.  I wonder if you are merely trying to convince yourself or simply need confirmation by others that you are indeed saved.  I am completely satisfied with the answers provided by science concerning our role on earth without making something mystical about it.

    Much of our past history has been corrupted by those who thought THEY knew the truth about how others should believe.  You are no different in your preaching about what religion to adhere to. I have no doubt if you had lived in the time of the Aztecs you would have believed the high priests when they said it was necessary for you to allow your children to be sacrificed in order to make it rain.  Especially if it was written in their bible.  Talk about religious faith, these ancient people had more faith in their gods than you have in yours.  Would you sacrifice your children if your god told you to?

    1. Bibowen profile image90
      Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      But, RG, you believe you are right and that you know how others ought to believe, namely, that they should believe correctly, like you. After all, you know the truth, being, that people that think they know the truth have corrupted history.

      Yes, had we lived during the time of the Aztecs we would likely have participated in child sacrifice, children would be hewed to pieces and burned, much in the same way their lives are snuffed out in American abortuaries today....

      At any rate, the fallacy is that you assume that by explaining where a belief comes from, you have validated or negated that belief. But where a belief originates is irrelevant as to its truth claim(s).

      1. Randy Godwin profile image93
        Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I could care less how you believe Bibowen, or anyone else as far as that is concerned.  And where a belief originates has everything to do with truth or claims of truth.  Believers however, seem to fear facts and reality as it threatens their reasons for believing the things they adhere to.  No problem for me as I prefer to live among those who are not afraid to see the world as it is, not as you would have it.

        Spread your propaganda if you wish, you are among many who have caused countless death and misery since man decided to control other men through superstitious belief and threats of everlasting hellfire to those who don't see things your way.  Burned any witches lately?

        1. Bibowen profile image90
          Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          As I said, where an idea originates is irrelevant as to its truth claim. Let's say some animist 1,000 years ago comes up with what we call Boyle's Law (the relationship between pressure, volume and temperature of a gas). The fact that he came up with the idea does not touch the truthfulness of any phenomena in nature.

          You really should rethink such a puerile idea.

          As for the witches, we were afraid to strike the matches for all the gas you were using on the Jews....

          1. Randy Godwin profile image93
            Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            I agree with this type of truthfulness, but just because someone invented a god thousands of years ago does not mean this is truthfulness either.  Even after all of the centuries there is still no proof that god, exists unless you care to prove it.

            Cotton Mather was a man such as yourself, claiming to be a godly man, he stacked the deck against innocent persons accused of witchcraft all in the name of your god. Son of a preacher man he too thought he knew what his god required him to do.  Speaking for god often results in these types of consequences as history shows.  And what does the Jews have to do with me?

            1. Bibowen profile image90
              Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              If God does exist, then it is simply mistaken that God fulfill your demand for the level of evidence that you will be satisfied with before you'll accept Him. God stipulates the level of evidence. And God has given sufficient evidence to make belief possible, yet not so much evidence so as to compel belief. As evidence for this, we see around us a universal and transcendent belief in God.

              Also, you don't demand "proof" in other areas of life. The bar is too high. In risky matters (like flying in an airplane), you don't demand "proof" that the plane will land. You take a certain amount of risk based on available evidence.

              The best evidence is that God exists and that He is the best explanation for why the universe is the way it is.

              I've never claimed to be godly. I am a sinner that is saved by the grace of God. Because someone does something in the name of God is no more an indictment against God (or me) than someone that went out and committed a crime in your name. Are you culpable just because someone goes out and does something wrong and says "But, I did it for you"? How is God indictable just because someone did something sinful in His name?

          2. Mark Knowles profile image59
            Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            See - this is why it is all but impossible to have a polite discussion of religious beliefs. The bible is true and anyone who suggests other wise is puerile.

            The simple fact is that there is a rather large difference between physical laws that are measurable and an invisible super being. wink

            Puerile to think otherwise, I would agree, but there you have it. Merely repeating that you think the bible is true over and over will not make it so. Sorry.

            1. Bibowen profile image90
              Bibowenposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Well MK, had you read the entire discussion, you would know that what was offered was an illustration and it was an illustration to point out that the performance of an opinion is irrelevant as to the truth claim of the opinion. It had nothing to do with making the case for "an invisible super being."

              So, if you want to misapply my illustration to points that have nothing to do with the original point being made, then knock yourself out.....

              1. Mark Knowles profile image59
                Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

                My mistake. I thought you were arguing that the the physical law you quoted was true and it did not matter where it originated to make it true. And that this was the same with the claims in the bible. Where these claims come from do not matter - they are still true.

                Sorry. In that case I agree with you. Where the truths come from do not matter. The bible is un-provable and false. Nothing will change that, and the information in it is nothing like the physical law you were referring to as an illustration.

                Thanks for clearing that up. wink

    2. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      You ask a very repulsive question.  Did you read my hub and see how I adore my children.  Careful now.  sad

      I believe in a God who sacrificed Himself.  Knowing  what I know your question is hard for me to answer so allow me to go to history of patriarchs.

      Abraham was willing and he is the father of the faithful.  This was after God told him that the offspring would be fruitful so we all assume that Abraham believed that god would bring Isaac back from the dead.  Abraham's experience showed that the God of the bible does not require human sacrifice but provided a sacrifice.

      Now I know I must do that thread on sacrificial system of the Jews.  Not children but lambs etc.  Go post there to continue this topic.  Promise you it will be boring & illogical.  Half of the time. big_smile

      http://hubpages.com/forum/post/283499

      If no one posts then I'll conclude that people only want to discuss philosophy and not religion.

      1. Randy Godwin profile image93
        Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I agree the question is repulsive, but it deserves an answer from you unless your faith in your god isn't as strong as those of the heathen Aztecs.  Because they had more faith than you does it mean they were right in their beliefs?  This shows how having faith in a deity does not mean the faith is rightfully placed.  How can you show your faith is better placed than theirs, after all, they sacrificed more than you.

        1. glendoncaba profile image82
          glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          The answer was right there under your nose.

          Abraham is a role model of faith and he was tested by God on the same issue and he agreed to sacrifice Isaac, and would have done so had the angel not intervened.  So logically we would all be doing it if God Himself did not promise and provide a Sacrifice.  God sacrificed the Son so that all we need to sacrifice now would be pride, lust, greed.

          The object of faith does not validate faith.  Faith must be shown to be reasonable and consistent with the ethics of love and the sanctity of life.

          Faith in nazism does not make it right.

          1. Randy Godwin profile image93
            Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            I do not ask for an answer from a novel, I asked you what you would do if told by leaders of your faith to sacrifice your children.  Would you then decide to think for yourself instead of taking their views?

            1. glendoncaba profile image82
              glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

              Novel?

              Well well.

              Given the historical context of 2009 i guess i would shoot them, at least stone them, and then you for suggesting.  big_smile

              Back in the stone age who knows what I would have done.  Perhaps you would have been the high priest.  And I the rebel who believed there had to be a better way, looking for the white sails over the horizon with paleface with a book of news of a God who does not require human sacrifice.

              Give me that novel any day.

    3. glendoncaba profile image82
      glendoncabaposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I still point you to the relevant question in the original post.  My observations remain unchanged. Go pick on something written by an atheist to show me you are honest.

      Once we keep it polite I can participate.  A little less than usual.  My hub challenge is important.

  40. fierycj profile image84
    fierycjposted 7 years ago

    This thread aint looking that polite to me. smile

    1. earnestshub profile image87
      earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      smile We have both seen worse fiery!

  41. Randy Godwin profile image93
    Randy Godwinposted 7 years ago

    I think we can all agree truth is not controversial.  But unproven statements put forth as truths are.  The bible and god are unprovable no matter what spin one may apply to them.

  42. waynet profile image46
    waynetposted 7 years ago

    No thanks, I'd rather....http://img525.imageshack.us/img525/8742/whateverle3.gif

    1. Ron Montgomery profile image60
      Ron Montgomeryposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      You stole my hub idea mad

  43. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    Hello Mohit smile Have you looked in to the bit that is known about the sub conscious? I find it a very interesting study, along with the theories of dirty DNA. What do you think?

    1. mohitmisra profile image60
      mohitmisraposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Hi earnesthub can you expand on the dirty DNa please.

  44. earnestshub profile image87
    earnestshubposted 7 years ago

    I think the appropriate link may do a better job of explaining it Mohit smile
    Still looking for the link

    1. mohitmisra profile image60
      mohitmisraposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Ok thank you smile

      1. earnestshub profile image87
        earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I found the site Mohit, http://paradise-engineering.com/
        the info is here, I will keep looking, but this is a huge site.I do recall it is in the section on The molecular biology of paradise though!

        1. mohitmisra profile image60
          mohitmisraposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Thanks will look it up.

          1. earnestshub profile image87
            earnestshubposted 7 years ago in reply to this

            IFor Mohit, the site is huge, I will look for the relative article/item for you.
            Please allow some time smile
            David who owns this group of websites must be one of the hardest workers online! He and his associates built and maintain this monolithic site. It is so big that it took me two years with 4 dictionaries to read it, No, I must be honest I just remembered, I still have not finished all of it! smile

  45. quietnessandtrust profile image60
    quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago

    Religion can be "man made" and for the most part what we see today is just that. It is not pure. It has been adulterated by lies while maintaining an appearance of truth. This keeps the sheep at the feeding troff and the building full.

    A relationship is quite another matter. We need to ask ourselves just one question and that would be.

    DO WE WANT TO KNOW AND HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH THE TRUTH???

    Do we want to know the answer to the question "what is truth?"

    So what is truth? Not your truth, because that can contain even the slightest lie or error. Not my truth, because it could contain the same.

    We are welcome to "our opinion" but, they are tainted far to often and they vary from moment to moment, person to person, they can be changed when more of THE TRUTH is revealed to us, so an opinion is shaky.

    My truth and your truth are both impure and limited in understanding.

    THE TRUTH stands above anyones opinion or point of view, because THE TRUTH is not subject to making an error or lying. THE PURE TRUTH cannot be deceived at all. Men often get some truth and quickly twist it and destroy many with mindless religion.

    THE TRUTH cannot be changed by anyones opinion or perception or list of so called facts, THE TRUTH cannot be changed by mens formation of any one of 300 religions.

    THE TRUTH IS THE TRUTH and dwells in a secret place far above our tiny minded concepts of "my truth" or "your truth" that make us feel comfortable and fat and satisfied.

    Our perception, we think, is our reality. NO, reality is alone REALITY and your perception is limited and often a pure illusion. The difference between an illusion, a perception and TOTAL REALITY is often hard to see.

    But make no mistake, TOTAL REALITY AND THE PURE TRUTH are not subject to our limited understanding. THEY ARE FAR ABOVE US ALL.

    THE TRUTH can find an error in any of us.

    So, does anyone want to know THE TRUTH? Or are we afraid to know?

    1. marinealways24 profile image62
      marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I don't think Jesus is the truth.

    2. Mark Knowles profile image59
      Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I have THE TRUTH.

      Do you want to know what it is? Although - you are probably not going to like the answer............

      1. marinealways24 profile image62
        marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

        We came from chimps and there is no reason or purpose or nothing divine to life?

        1. Mark Knowles profile image59
          Mark Knowlesposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          no

          1. marinealways24 profile image62
            marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

            lol , I'm interested to see.

      2. quietnessandtrust profile image60
        quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Say on.

  46. Colebabie profile image59
    Colebabieposted 7 years ago

    The truth is, I didn't read all of that. But I think I know what you're trying to say.

    1. marinealways24 profile image62
      marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      lol I just said what he is trying to say.

    2. quietnessandtrust profile image60
      quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Some reason you did not read all of it.

      I mean, the truth behind your reason is???

      1. Colebabie profile image59
        Colebabieposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        I just didn't care to read it all. It was repetitive with no real meaning to me. Sorry.

        1. quietnessandtrust profile image60
          quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          OH OK....Truth has no meaning?

  47. quietnessandtrust profile image60
    quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago

    Hummm...to all those who just posted above me.

    I saw no answer to the standing questions.

    1- So, does anyone want to know THE TRUTH?

    2- Or are we afraid to know?

    3- DO WE WANT TO KNOW AND HAVE A RELATIONSHIP WITH THE TRUTH???

    I never said who or what THE TRUTH is...that is why I am asking you all the very direct, frank and personal questions above.

    We all have relationships with people, pets, places and things.

    So I though it good to ask the questions.
    NOT "your truth" NOT "my truth" NOT your mothers...THE TRUTH.

    1. marinealways24 profile image62
      marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

      Now you are absolutely lying. I posted your answer above, yet you said no one knows what you are hinting at. You aready said what your truth was in one of my hub comments.

  48. tantrum profile image61
    tantrumposted 7 years ago

    who could possibly be afraid of the truth ?

    1. tantrum profile image61
      tantrumposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      So no answers ..just what I expected

    2. quietnessandtrust profile image60
      quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I am not afraid of THE TRUTH.....I am asking the question of others.

      The question(s) are on the first post I made.
      I have been busy on other hubs and email.

      I reposted the questions above as well...please read the original.

      Shalom

      1. marinealways24 profile image62
        marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Your truth is not others truth. There would be no individuals.

        1. quietnessandtrust profile image60
          quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          Truth defined:

          1. Reality; actuality.
          2. often Truth that which is considered to be the supreme reality and to have the ultimate meaning and value of existence.

          You say:
          "Your truth is not others truth. There would be no individuals."

          My reply is: How many times do I have to say it "NOT MY TRUTH OR YOUR TRUTH".....BUT THE TRUTH.

          Your truth and or mine....is not the same as THE ULTIMATE TRUTH and or reality....we are to tiny an "individual" to be THE TRUTH.

          Ever "thought" you knew the truth about something and found out you were wrong, all the while believing and arguing "your truth" to someone???

          THE TRUTH transcends "your's or mine"

          I am talking about THE ULTIMATE TRUTH, just like the definition states.

          Shalom

          1. marinealways24 profile image62
            marinealways24posted 7 years ago in reply to this

            lol again, this is your truth. Are you the creator of the universe? Can you answer all of the unknowns of the universe? No. Why? Because you do not know absolute truth no matter how your phrase it. You assume you know which leads me to believe your belief is based on assumptions.

  49. quietnessandtrust profile image60
    quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago

    Awaiting a reply :-)

    1. tantrum profile image61
      tantrumposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      you are waiting the reply of colebaby. I asked you a question. So what's your answer?  35 minutes ago! And you're always late I just saw u by chance

      1. Colebabie profile image59
        Colebabieposted 7 years ago in reply to this

        Someone is waiting for my reply? What was the question?

        1. tantrum profile image61
          tantrumposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          you're not getting any question, the guy only wants 2 post alone

        2. quietnessandtrust profile image60
          quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

          The question(s) are on the first post I made up above.
          I have been busy on other hubs and email.

          I think the original post has been quoted in other replies too.



          Shalom

  50. tantrum profile image61
    tantrumposted 7 years ago

    why do you aske people that are not here? Can't u see they've moved ages ago?

    1. quietnessandtrust profile image60
      quietnessandtrustposted 7 years ago in reply to this

      I move around to other things when nobody is posting...I for sure am not avoiding you.

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