If God exists and he in fact does interfere with our lives why does he let bad things happen to good people? Why does he let people suffer who don't deserve to? Is this one big ass game to him or is there something that we can not understand in the works here? Maybe he doesn't interfere at all, or maybe.....maybe he does not exist? Don't think negatively of my due to my thoughts as of now I believe in God. I am just asking the question that people are afraid to ask.
Your thoughts are logical and would not lead me to think negatively of you. I think these questions and lack of satisfactory answers are part of what makes me have a hard time believing in an intervening deity. Why let some suffer so horribly if it can be stopped? Either a God can do something and chooses not to or a God exists and can't interfere or a God doesn't exist.
New International Version (NIV)
The Rich Man and Lazarus
19 “There was a rich man who was dressed in purple and fine linen and lived in luxury every day. 20 At his gate was laid a beggar named Lazarus, covered with sores 21 and longing to eat what fell from the rich man’s table. Even the dogs came and licked his sores.
22 “The time came when the beggar died and the angels carried him to Abraham’s side. The rich man also died and was buried. 23 In Hades, where he was in torment, he looked up and saw Abraham far away, with Lazarus by his side. 24 So he called to him, ‘Father Abraham, have pity on me and send Lazarus to dip the tip of his finger in water and cool my tongue, because I am in agony in this fire.’
25 “But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. 26 And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’
27 “He answered, ‘Then I beg you, father, send Lazarus to my family, 28 for I have five brothers. Let him warn them, so that they will not also come to this place of torment.’
29 “Abraham replied, ‘They have Moses and the Prophets; let them listen to them.’
30 “‘No, father Abraham,’ he said, ‘but if someone from the dead goes to them, they will repent.’
31 “He said to him, ‘If they do not listen to Moses and the Prophets, they will not be convinced even if someone rises from the dead.’”
Yea, nice story. You got any proof other than words? I'd believe a man rising from the dead, but I'd have to see it with my own eyes. We as a human race have evolved from the past, we don't just believe every story read or we hear.
Dont flatter yourself. This question has been asked many times before you did.
I just wrote a hub that once again addresses that good and bad things happen to all ppl, saved or unsaved. It's called Money doesn't solve money problems. We are all on the same earth, spinning at the same pace. The rain falls on the just and the unjust.
That bad things happen to the just and unjust, the righteous and unrighteous, doesn't explain why God allows it to be that way. Or does it?
I'm interested in how people answer that question myself. Psycheskinner gave one answer, but there are others as well - the red herring of free will being necessary, for example.
Your only interest is pissing off Christians, nothing more.
Um, I am interested in how people resolve this dilemma. Perhaps you would like to engage with that in a spirit of mutual understanding rather than suggest people shouldn't care or are trolling--which I don't see. I see people here who do care and actually want to understand how other people see the world.
For example, if this seemingly arbitrary suffering has a purpose, what might it be? If we are incapable of understanding this purpose on earth is that understanding provided in heaven?
That seems like a bit of a dog in the manger attitude to me. Non-interest should logically lead to non-participation. Unless you feel there is some virtue in actively suppressing this discussion, and if so I would be curious as to what that reason is?
I dont disguss God with atheists. My experience with atheists when discussing God always result with insult to both me and God. Done.
Not nonplussing God with atheists would lead you to not be commenting on this thread. What you are doing is actually trying to stop atheists discussing God with other people. Why does that offend you? Surely those people can make their own decisions as to whom they discuss God with?
Other than you contributions I was seeing sincere discussion, but you are quite successfully sabotaging that effort.
Stopping an atheist from posting a comment is not possible. I have asked a number of atheists to not comment on any of my forums, but they do it anyways with insults. Discussing God with atheists is a waste of my time.
That is exactly my point. I was not discussing God with you yet you twist my words around as if i was.
And yet you are replying...to an atheist...in a forum...for discussion. I think psycheskinner has you pegged but not all Christians.
Dog In The Manger? I do not understand this reference.
Basically she just said, "if you didn't care you wouldn't be in here. So stop the trolling and open your damn mind."
As for your first response Psyche I like your last sentence and when you put it with Autumns theory we might have an answer.
1. Either God exists and we can not understand these things while alive in earth or...
2. There is no God and there are no consequences for our actions other than those we receive on earth.
If a Christian gets PO'd when asked to explain their belief, that's a Christian (or anyone else) that needs to be avoided.
A Christian doesnt need to explain his beliefs to be rideculed.
When you beat down all walls and get to the core of any religion the answer to these kinds of questions will lie in the belief of "blind faith". I do not have that. I want answers. Until then neither I nor anyone who thinks like me can be wrong on any level. On Earth or in the afterlife. We can not be blamed for living in 2013 and being logical thinkers who are not quick to believe what we read in a book that was written.....well we actually don't know when it was written and we don't know who wrote it. What we do know is that the Romans ruled the world for many years, so I am sure they had a large influence on what is in the GOOD BOOK
New International Version (NIV)
The Great Commission
16 Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
I don't find that answer particularly offensive, and I'm a Christian. Maybe his intention was to attempt to answer a question in good faith (pardon the pun). Not everyone who doesn't believe in God is out to sabotage or humiliate or anger those who do.
Alot of them are here in these forum hubs. You cant denie it.
I didn't say there weren't those folks here. I said not everyone. If it's impossible to delineate between some and all, and we react the same way to all despite markedly different behavior from some, that's really our problem, not theirs.
Sister I have friends who are atheists and at times we talk God, and there are no insults on other side. as a matter of fact, an ex-atheist friend of mine is now agnostic. These atheits here who invade Christian forums are only here to ridecule, nothing more.
This is a Christian forum indeed.
Shall I say the Christians who invade this forums are only here to speak nonsense.? Well as I'm not a Christian like you, I don't make sweeping insults, though nobody has told me to forgive seven seventy times.
Well next time have the sense to not join in a Christian forum.
Next time, have sense to look at what forum you are posting. It says "Explore»Religion and Philosophy»Discussions»If God exists.......", see not a Christian forum at all.
Again messed up?
Going down through this particular discussion again, the only insults I see are from a single Christian. Not from the atheists, not from reasonable Christians or from anyone else but you.
Kind of says something, doesn't it? Like, maybe, there's a reason you find so many insults coming your way?
Interesting, because you've said very clearly more than once that talking to an atheist about God is a waste of time. You've never specified that you only mean the atheists here. I have many friends who are atheists. Several of them are active participants in these forums.
The atheists here are hardly invading anything when they post here. It's a public forum. Provided they follow the TOS, they've as much right to be here (and in any numbers) as anyone else. If one feels constant ridicule is being heaped upon them, they learn to steer clear of those doing the ridiculing. Steering clear would also mean (at least in my opinion) not baiting those folks with insults and ridicule of one's own.
It is entirely necessary when discussing God to A)remember that each person to whom you respond is an entirely unique individual and B)to treat them the way you hope they will treat you.
And, I can't help now but to be utterly confused. You say you are a universalist, and yet you believe that atheists are not worthy to discuss their universal savior with you?
Of course it is - to an omnipotent God there are no intermediate steps or requirements necessary to achieve the final goal. Not bad things happening, not eternal torture (or fear of it) and not free will. The biggest reason it's a red herring, though, is that lots of bad things happen that do not come from the free will of the one suffering. The starving infant, the person losing their home to a tornado, etc.
No, it's not. You're subscribing to the fallacy that if God can do anything then He must do EVERYTHING. It's simply not true. Because if it were, then we really are just robots, doing whatever we're programmed to do.
BTW I buried my wife not too many months ago, so if you want to talk about the "suffering of those who didn't choose it" trust me, I have thought about this a great deal more than many in this forum, I daresay. Not all, but many.
Why shouldn't we. How one answers this question has profound implications in terms of what kind of world we live in.
Yes, last time I checked God does not exist according to your observations, so what difference would her answer make to you? I'm guessing none.
You know, not everyone comes to these forums to regale anyone that will listen with their belief system.
Some of us come to learn. About differing beliefs, about people and how they think - how they come to conclusions as much as what those conclusions are. Knowing what you believe is pretty worthless information unless you can explain why you hold those beliefs.
Why do you come to the forums? To learn how and what others believe or to simply pound out your own beliefs with no reasoning or "why" ever offered?
I don't see anything in that hub that addresses why good and bad things happen to all people, I read a bunch of "you must love God" stuff in there along with some complaining about not having any money and despising those who do.
This is a question that has been asked since before the Bible was written, and is asked and discussed within the Bible.
I know that those who put their faith in Jesus will see Heaven, even if they've had horrible crummy lives here on Earth. Those who don't will not, even if they had seemingly teflon lives with all sorts of riches and whatever here on Earth.
I know for a lot of people that is insufficient. And I understand that. I've had to wrestle with that on a very personal basis. My wife died recently and I don't think anyone who knew her would argue that if one member of the family had to die it shouldn't have been her. In fact she was probably the strongest believer in our family. Yet she suffered horribly for decades with disease and eventually succumbed to cancer. It was the most horrible thing I've ever gone through, taking care of her while she slipped away, and I would not wish it on my worst enemy. My kids are pretty ripped up, especially my middle son. And yeah, we ask "Why?" But I know that she is in Heaven with Jesus, and I can't say that about all the people I know who died who were believers. I hope to someday see her again.
She told our daughter that one day they would dance in Heaven.
Why? Why can't you say other believers go to heaven?
Because I take what Jesus said very literally, and He pointedly said on more than one occasion that many who called themselves believers were not going to be in Heaven.
I should clarify. That does not mean I feel free to judge people. I'm sure that if I were to indulge in such a practice and I still got to Heaven, I would be very surprised at who made it and who didn't. I take that as my cue to be more careful about what I say and do. I will not be judged for anyone else and no one else will be judged for me. I am responsible for myself.
Jesus was said to have said many things that never happened. Prayers can't move mountains and the end of times did not come within his generation.
If you don't judge others who do you know who is doing the right things. Maybe the Catholics and only the Catholics get in. Although just saying only some get in seems silly to me. Do all the muslims not make it in because they were born to muslims?
I was always under the impression that there are many poor or incorrect translations in the English bibles and this instance concerning “moving mountains” would one of these poor translations. Possibly something like “faith can do GREAT things” or “ faith can do things that you would think would otherwise be impossible”
I also believe that when scripture speaks of the end of days, they are speaking about the end of days for that Hebrew Nation which Jesus was talking to. That Hebrew Nation did come to their end of Days when that group of people were scattered to the four corners of the Roman Empire which began in 135 AD and was completed before 150 AD when there wasn’t a single Hebrew to be found in all of Israel and Judea.
As for judging others?? By whatever measure you judge another so shall ye also be judged. I think it would be best to not be a hanging Judge, but to be an extremely fair judge and honest judge or better yet, Don’t judge at all. That is the measure of judgment that I want .. not at all.
When we put down these physical bodies everything that happened to us in this plane will be of little consequence.
The question is not, "Can prayers move mountains?"
It's, "Why have we never seen this happen?"
Personally, I don't know the answer to that one. Many people have off-the-cuff remarks ready, but I'm not one of them.
I'm not one to say that ONLY Baptists or Reformed or Lutheran or Catholics will get in. Jesus' admonishment to "Judge not lest you be judged," although meant for the priests and teachers of the law who set such impossibly strict standards for getting into Heaven that no one could meet them, is still valid. It's not my job to decide who will get into Heaven, that is for God alone. I just need to be doing my best to make sure that I'm one of them.
At the risk of sounding liberal, I think that a great many people get hung up on church governance as the yardstick by which they will be judged. And that's a huge mistake.
Now obviously you can't have it all ways. I'm not a universalist, as we all know. But if someone is a universalist, I don't think that all by itself would keep them out of Heaven. And certainly by the same token, the need to believe in a Righteous Judge (which the Bible clearly indicates God to be) should not preclude that He is a Loving Father (which the Bible also clearly indicates.)
And yeah, as a Prod I don't see how reliance on tradition can actually supersede what the Bible says. I'm a Sola Scriptura guy. Nevertheless, I don't think that someone who actually puts their faith in Jesus, even if they also pray to St. Anthony, will truly be denied entry.
All that having been said, the one thing I try to keep in mind is that it's not my job to judge. God has reserved that for Himself. Yes, we need to differentiate between good and bad here on Earth, which is not always that easy, but we don't decide who goes to Heaven and who doesn't.
Ha ha ha ha. Good one Chris. Wouldn't want to sound liberal now would we.
After my carefully built image as an arch-conservative, you mean?
Seriously though, Calvinists are not supposed to be liberal. I think if that happens we get our TULIP card burned at the door and immediately married off to a Methodist in Minnesota. By a female pastor.
I will tell you a story from Mahabharata.
One day a brahman and a sudra was brought to the court for similar crime and the court teacher asked the eldest of the kaurava and pandava Princes, to test them, about the punishment they would give. (Brahmans belong to the highest caste and was well respected while sudras are of low caste- menials at that time). The kaurava prince said that as the crimes being the same the punishment should also be the same (human standard)(then the standard was, not punishing or punishing lightly a brahmin while heavy punishment for sudras for the same crime) while the pandava prince said that the brahman should get a higher punishment for he knew what he was doing and he should have acted as a model for low castes. The divine standard- higher the power and responsibility higher the punishment.
So compare this to the god of Bible, has he ever acted anything more than like a despotic maniac? For children eating fruit he gives death, then forgetting him for a few minutes he institute barbaric punishment and he prescribes barbaric punishment for crimes (an eye for an eye) then suddenly without explanation a volte-face asking everyone to love others which he himself do not follow (whoever "speak" against his alter ego- the ghost will get hell).
Being a god at least one should expect consistency instead he act like human despot whose mood and action no one can predict hence gave no idea how to please.
So what is the "god standard" to to which the human standard can be compared?
Wow. You missed a lot of points there.
You are aware that "eye for an eye" was actually prescribing a LESSER punishment than was common at the time? So that in actuality, God was prescribing more HUMANE treatment than was common?
However, I do thank you for the story. My knowledge of Hindu and Indian lore is lacking and I am always grateful for opportunities to learn more. And I'm totally serious.
I was not saying that he was not giving a more humane treatment for the time, what I say is that for a being that transcend time, it is a barbaric act. For a human who cannot see beyond the immediate future, it is humane but for a god who can see thousands of years into the future it is barbaric.
And if I understand correctly the treatment is not more humane but just is prevalent in most societies(in the middle east) of that time heavily drawn from the akkadian, sumerian and assyrian laws and stoning and killing ones child for disobedience is not humane at all, from any angle.
The key is the phrase "for a human who cannot see beyond the immediate future." God gave rules that were more humane than the surrounding societies because humans needed the small steps. Had He just simply said all at once "I don't care what happens, forgive the other person and keep your peace," then most of the Hebrews would have deserted and gone to groups that practiced more in line with what they already thought as human beings. Or been massacred by surrounding groups that weren't as dainty.
Surrounding societies actually allowed for retribution that was out of line with the offense. This was also not equally applied to everyone, rich people could virtually enslave a poor person over some relatively small infraction while they themselves got no punishment for doing the same thing TO a poor person. This was the other innovation, not just that the punishment "fit the crime" but that the punishment applied to everyone. Granted, Jewish society did not always practice it that way (an age-old story, little different from today) but the idea was there, which it was not in other societies.
The rule is regarding interaction between the jews, hence the comment about surrounding group is moot. Though the bible depicts the jews as fools who cannot see beyond the tip of their nose, a whole population cannot be so foolish. A whole population who saw god, was at the gun point for any offence is not going to desert god for asking them to love their brother. And god always used extreme punishments to bring them back to fold, including torture and death. So at the least, god should have behaved more humanely. So saying'they wouldn't have obeyed' is a lame excuse for god made them do anything he wished and his punishments were always in the extreme (killing innocents because David took a census for example)
Also when Jesus preached the condition around hadn't changed.
Unfortunately history does not support this Chris. There is no much difference between jews and their neighbours in terms of laws. You might remember that when a jew strike another jew and if he is dead any day the punishment is death while if it is a slave that is struck, if he is dead after the first day there is not much punishment while if it is the slave that strikes the punishment is death. And this from code of Hammurabi " If a patrician has stolen ox, sheep, ass, pig, or ship, whether from a temple, or a house, he shall pay thirtyfold. If he be a plebeian, he shall return tenfold. If the thief cannot pay, he shall be put to death."
which shows the gradations just opposite to what you say
Well, you've certainly overstated your case.
Getting to the "slave" part first, I dealt with that in a hub. The one about "Does the OT teach slavery." Go read that and then tell me what you think.
As for the first part, wow. No, actually the Bible does not portray the Jews that way and I wonder more about you than the Bible. But assuming you are not anti-semitic, the Bible does show constantly that the Jews deserted God in whole or in part to go do what they wanted. And there would be long, sometimes very long, periods of time where nothing seemed to happen because of it. Then there would be punishment.
And I DID say that the laws weren't always applied the way they should have been.
I don't think much about it other than that you have taken much pain, rather more pain than the original translators over a century, to change the meanings of words to give it a new meaning.
You also tried to differentiate the slaves and give your opinion of which type is mentioned when only the word slave is mentioned.
But again we are not discussing about the morality of keeping a slave, are we? We are discussing whether the punishments were any different from the groups surrounding israel, or is their any special humanity in the laws of israel. You said there is punishment only to the poor in other groups while definitely it was not the case. And even in israel, even the king does no wrong. But as there are frequent intrusions by foreigners, "it is the god's way of punishing the kings".
The bible "does show", but real history and human psychology does not. Excuse me if I mention India too much, Isalm was spread in India with the help of sword, especially in its initial phase(not all). The hindus were very adamant and only at the threat of death they converted. But did their second generation reverted when the threat is gone? No, they remained adamant followers of Islam. The history is similar across human culture, it took great pains to change humans existing form and in peace time it is rather very slow and in war time they hung to the old, the one they are familiar and comfortable with, till they are defeated and forced to change.
Just take the history 200 years before. There were despots and the peasants condition were very poor, did they revolt? Very rarely, compared to the injustice meted out to them, and only when the conditions become unbearable. Now think of the jews,they are the people who have 'seen' and were in the 'presence' of god. They know he is worse than a dictator and his punishments were death and disaster. So either they should be fools to wish simply to change the agent of worship from someone they 'know' to some 'unknown' one, or
Now Jews were never a great nation but a small nation mostly under foreign control or threat constantly. Being god's favoured people they need an explanation for their small size and sub-ordinate status. They sinned and what else is a better explanation? And as most of the time they were under foreign rule, the bible says they deserted god continuously, which is far from the truth. If god had asked them to treat other fellow jews just like what jesus had asked they would never desert god for that, because according to bible, god gave them laws directly and before them they had no laws.
Then as I said, when jesus preached the new law, the conditions were same. So why did god chose a time that was least fit?
History actually DID show. Do you remember the stories several years ago where the person "discovered" the pottery and then tried to trumpet it to the world, only to have it point out that the Bible had actually already discussed this?
I like your psychologizing. I've grown to appreciate this aspect of some people. Some of it is extremely clever. I'm not being in the least sarcastic when I say that. It doesn't mean I agree with you, but I can respect a good construction.
UNless you specify I have no idea what you are talking about for though I read much, newspapers are not part of it. Nor I watch tv.
I was not psycholgizing but offering an explanation why the bible is contradicting history. Israel never was a great nation and there is nothing left, not even a stone from the great builder Solomon and even then it was a small nation subordinate to local powers, not worth mentioning in history except for the religions it gave rise to. It also should be mentioned that the 'wise' Solomon who conversed with god in dreams and built a temple for him was a polytheist.
(And according to history books a strong monotheism, the Yahweh, came to prominence only in 7 century BC.) and much of the bible was written down only after that.
Well, we're kind of in the same boat here then.
Which history books? A majority of them? A majority of them written after a certain time? A majority of them found in certain libraries? Written by historians with a particular bent? That's not accusatory, it's just that if you say "history books" that's kind of non-specific.
I actually heard this on NPR and saw it on nbcnews.com (msnbc.com back then.) I don't remember the date. But some historian had found an ancient Jewish pottery inscribed to "YHWH and his Ashtoreth" (I think, it was one of those pagan goddesses) and tried to make it sound like Israel had in fact always been polytheistic and only the writers of the Bible were truly monotheistic. It was then pointed out by multiple people that this did not in the least contradict the Bible, that there were known periods of polytheism which, in the Bible, were always bringing God's wrath on Israel.
Israel was NEVER a great nation?
The 7th century mention was from penguin history by J M Roberts. Then I have one by nehru and susan beur.
Yes they were polytheistic and was mentioned in bible. I said Solomon was polytheist and from where did I got that information? Bible only because there is no Solomon outside the bible.
Not a great nation before the present century, if by great nation one means a great civilisation or an empire. An assortment of tribes in an area too small to be spotted in a map is not great. And the prominence of bible is only because of Christianity. The Bible was written later only after monotheism started ruling and disloyalty to Yahweh was attributed to their failure while in reality the neighbours had superior technology (iron for philistines) or superior numbers or both (messopotomia, assyria)
And if israel has seen god (which in reality is myth just like the myths of any other tribe) why should they go to another whom they have not seen? Are they fools not to study from experience?
But we were discussing an entirely different thing,
Why didn't god asked jews to love one another, at least the jews.
I'll get to the rest of it later, but as to that last sentence:
What do you think the Mosaic Law was all about? Yes it taught the Jews how to love and honor God but it also taught them how to love and honor each other instead of devolving into some Hatfield/McCoy feud in perpetuity.
That "love one another" was not the same one jesus advocated, was it? That love was by taking an eye for an eye before forgiving while jesus' s was show the opposite cheek, exactly opposite.
If, and only if, and ever only if, and in no other way than if, humanity had been a pacific bunch of guys hanging out together and God came along and slapped down that ONE piece of law, then you would be correct.
Now you are confusing me. Didn't jesus slapped the law?
What made mr.god change his view given that the conditions were all same?
You say the condition was not good? Then what change occurred during jesus time?
You say neighbours were hostile? My question is why can't Israel practice it among themselves, instead of practising it on outsiders like jesus said? The neighbours were more hostile during jesus time. And before that time god specifically asked jews to kill even children of neighbours (forgetting that he himself created them), so loving fellow jew wouldn't have been a problem.
No Israel was not an empire and wasn't meant to be. It was supposed to be God's nation.
After monotheism started ruling. No, I don't think Moses lived after monotheism started reigning. But even if so, so what? If the victors write the history and God is the victor then I don't get your point.
That the Philistines had superior technology and the Assyrians greater numbers is no secret. Preachers talk about it from the pulpit. It makes the Israelite victories over them that much more amazing.
No it's not a myth.
Why do people who are taught things they know to be true stray from that truth no matter what it might be? History is riddled with such instances. Usually it's because what they go to allows them to do something that their own teachings forbid (in this case the Bible usually hints or outright states that this was sexual in nature.) And when negative consequences don't come right away, people tell themselves that it must have been false, that they were mislead and such things don't really happen. I believe this is called 'human nature.'
It was never a great nation. It existed as a nation hardly for 600 years that too at the mercy of its neighbours. Its stories too are copies from its neighbours(mostly). God's nation? Is their any nation that has not claimed such?
The victors history is different. The looser just managed to keep together their version of history which was later taken over by christians and manipulated for their ends.
Only once in a while. Most of the time they were near slaves. A fanatic religion helped to keep the cohesion, even then only Judah survived.
It is. There is nothing to suggest otherwise.
What has this to do with god suddenly changing from "eye for eye" to "show the other cheek"?
No it's not a myth. Repeatedly saying that it is does not make it so.
The looser? Are you referring to Israel or yourself? (Sorry, just couldn't resist that one. In case you didn't get it, riddie, I'm referring to your misspelling of "loser.")
Actually, yes. In history there have been many, many nations that never once claimed to be God's nation. Even in modern history. Again, it helps if you don't defeat your own point.
It is, as you said repeatedly saying does not make it reality. Israel was formed by a group of people coalesced from many lands to that land and they were nomadic. Moses story and exodus is a myth written during the Babylonian time. Noah is from Mesopotamia. David(may be Hazael) and Solomon(may by Shamanser) were not real people they might have got the stories from near by powers. That is we have no historical evidence of the grand stories mentioned in bible. And they were never an empire nor a civilization. They had a nation from around 1000BC to 500Bc(in case of Judah), during that time also rarely independent. After Babylon, the time of independence is even less.
You misspelt, riddle!
Modern history. I am talking about the pagans, that is the nations without christianity. Ancient Indians and Chinese claimed it.
No, Riddie, I did not misspell "riddle."
And you're right, simply saying it doesn't make it true. Nevertheless, true it is.
Ok, I'll be happy to hear the evidence. I too can claim god talked to me, but that'll just be a claim.
I'll (along with other historians) be happy to hear the evidence of exodus, moses, david and solomon.
What is the basis of "nevertheless", indians got a better literature where god fights for them and win and they have a nation to prove, a nation that is established without the help of westerners who wanted to get rid of them and fulfil prophesies.
I think I confused you and that is my fault. Let me recap
YOu said if god had asked, jews wouldn't have obeyed him?
My reply is what needed clarification.
1) jews were polytheists to start with but by 7th century bc they became monotheistic and from then onwards remained so in spite of Babylonian exile which came soon after their monotheism.
2) once accepted people remain so till another power comes to disperse the former.
According to bible jews disobeyed god even after being with him and knowing that his punishments are severe. Only a fool will openly rebel against a power without any aim or hope of redemption, so were they fools?
Why didn't god asked jews to love one another then especially if he was going to give barbaric punishments?
Jesus time was no different from the ot times, then why god suddenly decided to give the love message then?
Is that a joke? You're talking about an entity that cursed men and women for all time simply because they disobeyed. Such an entity has no concept of what is humane treatment, which is once again shown in His lack of any morals or ethics with an eye for eye vengeance system. Humane indeed.
You have also missed the point. Yes, there is an element of "all of nothing" in there but that does not mean that any given moment will mean you go to hell for all eternity. That was why Jesus went up on the cross. It sounds unfair to a lot of people both inside and outside the faith but the fact is that a really horrible person who truly turns to Jesus just before he dies has a better chance of making it than a sweet person who spends their life saying, "I don't need Jesus."
That is one very good reason why your religion needs to be rejected. It can only attract really horrible people.
Like that awful Mother Teresa... what a horrible person she was.
"The study is based on accounts of doctors who visited Mother Teresa’s so-called “homes for the dying.” The found terrible conditions, Newser reported — poor hygiene among patients, hunger, lacking medical supplies. Some patients were even denied necessary medical care, doctors said. Even Mother Teresa didn’t get care there — she went to an American hospital, Newser reported. And the reported conditions weren’t for lack of money. Teresa’s Order of the Missionaries of Charity had hundreds of millions in donations, Newser reported." The Washington Times
Mother was very concerned that we preserve our spirit of poverty.
Spending money would destroy that poverty. She seemed obsessed with
using only the simplest of means for our work. Was this in the best
interests of the people we were trying to help, or were we in fact
using them as a tool to advance our own “sanctity?” In Haiti, to keep
the spirit of poverty, the sisters reused needles until they became
blunt. Seeing the pain caused by the blunt needles, some of the
volunteers offered to procure more needles, but the sisters refused.
We begged for food and supplies from local merchants as though we
had no resources. On one of the rare occasions when we ran out of
donated bread, we went begging at the local store. When our request was
turned down, our superior decreed that the soup kitchen could do
without bread for the day.
It was not only merchants who were offered a chance to be generous.
Airlines were requested to fly sisters and air cargo free of charge.
Hospitals and doctors were expected to absorb the costs of medical
treatment for the sisters or to draw on funds designated for the
religious. Workmen were encouraged to labor without payment or at
reduced rates. We relied heavily on volunteers who worked long hours in
our soup kitchens, shelters, and day camps.
A hard-working farmer devoted many of his waking hours to collecting
and delivering food for our soup kitchens and shelters. “If I didn’t
come, what would you eat?” he asked.
Our Constitution forbade us to beg for more than we needed, but,
when it came to begging, the millions of dollars accumulating in the
bank were treated as if they did not exist.
For years I had to write thousands of letters to donors, telling
them that their entire gift would be used to bring God’s loving
compassion to the poorest of the poor. I was able to keep my
complaining conscience in check because we had been taught that the
Holy Spirit was guiding Mother. To doubt her was a sign that we were
lacking in trust and, even worse, guilty of the sin of pride. I shelved
my objections and hoped that one day I would understand why Mother
wanted to gather so much money, when she herself had taught us that
even storing tomato sauce showed lack of trust in Divine Providence.
.For nearly a decade, Susan Shields was a Missionaries of Charity
sister. She played a key role in Mother Teresa’s organization until she
Yes, let's assume the woman who spent her entire life serving the "untouchables" was horrible.
Im sure while we sit here in our air conditioned homes, watching our TVs, and typing away our personal opinions on our lap tops that it was this tiny nun who was to blame and not some sort of bureaucracy issue. I would think that if she failed at 95% of what she attempted, she still is a more compassionate servant than any of us could ever pretend to be.
You mean like many of the scandals she was involved...
That was one of your less intellectual juxtapositions.
Yet, we see a lot of evidence that Christianity does attract horrible people. Or, does it make more sense that it is Christianity that teaches good people to do bad things. Which is it?
Alright, I know I am allowing myself to get sucked into a discussion that is actually off point of the original topic but that doesn't mean you don't have a point worth discussing.
Yes Christianity does attract horrible people and yes some of those people continue to be horrible after they claim to become Christian. This brings to mind several responses:
1) It sounds to me (and please correct me if I'm wrong) as if you're saying that Christians are ipso facto horrible people. That's just simply not true. Some are and some aren't. Some Muslims are horrible people and some aren't. Some atheists are horrible people and some aren't. Becoming a Christian doesn't change your personality, that takes work by the individual. And sometimes you're only seeing one part of a person, and it may be the one you really disagree with. Dawkins, when I've seen him, comes across as arrogant, acerbic and ready to say nasty things about Christians and Christianity simply because he enjoys doing it. His wife (who used to be a companion on Dr. Who if I'm not mistaken) probably sees a very different side of him, at least most of the time.
2) A related but separate point: All kinds of philosophies and belief systems attract all kinds of people for all kinds of reasons. Islam gets a lot of converts among violent prisoners. But before that, Christianity did (and still does.) Some of these people really do change, and some don't. Again, the person needs to do some work on their own personality, but sometimes it's because their "eyes have been opened" as to why the way they were living wasn't working so well.
3) If you're truly asserting that Christianity teaches people to do horrible things:
a) It depends on the person. Christianity teaches most people that they need to be loving. Not everyone absorbs the message but that is what it teaches.
b) Other systems also could be said to teach people to do horrible things. Even atheism. It depends
on how you look at it.
Chris, you're a hoot! I love it that you keep your sense of humor during all of these discussions. You're a good person.
There is a great amount of difference in the task of using good judgement and standing in judgement of another person. Once you place yourself in a position of judge over another person you are basically taking responsibility for your discernment of that person and responsibility for the effects of that discernment. However we use judgement every day. If you don't judge the right distance to a plank of wood it might just be far too close to your head than you would like. Just remember that our use of language was not the contemporary use of the language of the day when the bible was written. You have to add some common and sometimes uncommon sense to understand what is trying to be conveyed.
Save me a seat by the fire, Chris, we'll play checkers.
I saw where rad man pulled his comment out to question it, and I was shocked that it was made. I am sorry for your loss, but I have to note that this is one of the primary problems with this type of belief. Seriously. We sit in judgment of the living and make each other's lives miserable in the process. And then we judge the dead? That's a heavy burden. Condemning so many so callously and out of hand. I'm shocked you don't understand how alien this behavior would be to a loving God. Does the need to ease your own mind outweigh the needs of others? Must the idea of God be personalized to the detriment of others?
I understand the pain of losing a loved one in this reality, but I can't imagine my loved one's being more special than any other; to any but myself. It's difficult to follow how anyone could make a statement such as the one you made, concerning other people's situation after death. How do you resolve such a stance to kindness and love?
a) I think you need to read subsequent comments I made before 'judging' whether I really 'judge.'
b) I've said before that I believe in a Loving God but I also believe in a Just God. If you're going to preach Universalism (even Christian Universalism) to me then you need to produce some detailed documentation. Jesus was not shy in talking about the horrible end that awaits those who don't follow Him.
Chris, if you believe in heaven and you think someone didn't make it you are judging the dead. I don't see any other way to view your statement.
Let's just say I wonder about it. As a human I'm as skeptical of foxhole conversions as anyone, but as a believer I have to accept Jesus at His word that if you truly believe and repent, you'll make it in. And I've seen people who were believers do things I couldn't reconcile, but then if someone were to examine my life at such close range they would say the same of me.
I have my moments like anyone else, but I don't decide who made it and who didn't.
Where did Jesus say if you repent and believe you'll make it into heaven?
New International Version (©2011)
Jesus said to her, "I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die;
2 Two other men, both criminals, were also led out with him to be executed. 33 When they came to the place called the Skull, they crucified him there, along with the criminals—one on his right, the other on his left. 34 Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”[c] And they divided up his clothes by casting lots.
35 The people stood watching, and the rulers even sneered at him. They said, “He saved others; let him save himself if he is God’s Messiah, the Chosen One.”
36 The soldiers also came up and mocked him. They offered him wine vinegar 37 and said, “If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself.”
38 There was a written notice above him, which read: this is the king of the jews.
39 One of the criminals who hung there hurled insults at him: “Aren’t you the Messiah? Save yourself and us!”
40 But the other criminal rebuked him. “Don’t you fear God,” he said, “since you are under the same sentence? 41 We are punished justly, for we are getting what our deeds deserve. But this man has done nothing wrong.”
42 Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you come into your kingdom.[d]”
43 Jesus answered him, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.”
17From that time Jesus began to preach, and to say, Repent: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand.
3I tell you, no! But unless you repent, you too will all perish.
14Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God,
15And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. [Repent, and then believe. Not vice versa]
Also, although it's true that in most cases thinking your loved one was "more special than any others" would be an emotional response (which, in the face of grief I don't care if the person was a documented ogre, I would never say to the survivor "I can't imagine thinking your loved one more special than any others,") among those who actually knew Lisa there is no opposition, she was very special. And it's her strong belief in Jesus that convinces me that she is with Him, not her specialness as a human being.
That sucks man. This is what I am talking about. She was the biggest believer and still suffered. WTF. That is not fair. I don't mean to light a fire under you Chris, but you have to keep an open mind to the fact that she might not dance with anyone in heaven because that may be a fantasy. This is the type of stuff that pisses me off. she was probably a good person and this happens to her. She suffers. Isn't that why Jesus supposedly died? Didn't he suffer for all of us. Or was that just the earliest version of Superman before he traded he cut his hair and traded the robe and sandals for a cape and red boots?
According to the bible, Jesus didn't die so that we won't have to. Jesus dies so that those who believe in him will go to heaven when they are die regardless of how much they suffer..
I understand what you're saying but Jesus didn't die to alleviate physical suffering in this life. In fact, He said that if we follow Him there's a good chance we will suffer more. He died so that we could be with Him in Heaven, where there will literally be no suffering.
Is it a fantasy? A lot of people make the mistake of thinking that I've bought into some kind of indoctrination but the fact is that not only did I not grow up in a Christian household, I was really not a Christian at all. I have felt God's hand in my life and felt the presence of the Holy Spirit. Take that any way you want, I certainly don't expect you or anyone else to simply accept it, but it was God who changed my mind. So I had to decide what I do and don't accept in His word. And some things I will admit that I don't understand but I do know there's a Heaven.
With all due respect, no one has ever been afraid to ask those questions, especially in these forums. But kudos to you for choosing a topic that will get you a ton of attention from forum participants.
The blatant self-promotion... it burns my eyes.
It makes me want to go to his hub and post a link to one of my barely related hubs in his comment box...
Edit: I visited his hub... amazingly, it too burnt my eyes.
You know what, you're absolutely right.
It was unnecessary and I'm sorry. Curt is kinda what I do, in the future, though, I'll try to save it for those who are a bit more deserving of it.
Just a heads up though... It is kinda frowned upon to link to your own hub in the forums except if you are asking for help with making/editing/improving it.
God exist and so evil does too. In the bible, it is not only God that controls our lives, there's also the presence of evil who's there to ruin and test our faith. Maybe God really do have the power to go against the evil's will, but He wont do it coz He wants us to see the power of Him in our lives, just like what He did to
Well, if he wants us to go through what Job did then that would make him the evil one.
In a court the judgement is only after hearing the arguments of both sides. But the theists judge only after hearing god's side though they say one shouldn't judge. I am wondering why Mr. Satan fail to argue his case even though all the lawyers are on his side.
Well, some churches (that I have attended) actually teach that Satan pleads his case against you in the courts of the holy. This is where the judgment comes in at. Your life is presented as evidence. Satan pulls up all the wrongs you have done, but Christ steps in and basically reminds God that one believes in him and that he died so that we can get in.. Based on all of the information, God renders the final Judgment.
(NOTE- I stated that this is what some churches I have been to do. I did not state whether I believe this or not. Quite frankly, I dunno what happens once my eyes close for good other than the fact that I will be dead and I will know nothing more on this earth, and yes I am aware of where some of you stand here. I have no proof of anything)
I kind of get your point from a Child's perspective if a parent scolds them for doing a bad thing they will often scream back,"But that is not fair!" I don't think going through hard times makes God evil no more than scolding the child makes the parent evil. Also, it was not God that did those things to Job. It was Satan trying to make Job renounce God. You see that is what Satan wishes for us to do today. He wants us to say "There is no God." If Satan can make that happen then He feels like he has made some type of victory of his complete and total defeat, but here is the thing. Satan has limits to how far he can go. Those limits are set by God and God will in the end be the ultimate judge of who is faithful and true, not Satan. It is like God is the father you always needed but sometimes did not wish for. He saves us by warning us that the fire is very hot and will burn us, but a lot of us put our hands in the fire anyway.
I have read a short story and this is how your question was answered..
Why do you think a lot of people are not properly groomed?
Does it mean that beauticians or barbers do not exist?
Beauticians and barbers do exist. Those ungroom people do not go to salon to consult and let themselves be groomed.. Same as God... We just need to consult him and lay our lives on his own hands .
Also, in my opinion.. Why there are poor people? Most of them are having a vice like playing in casino.
Or they are too lazy to work...
Why they are sick? They are using cigarettes and eating food that are dangerous to their health.
Not following God have consequences.
Man's greatest attributes are only possible through diversity. Or, because its fair.
Suffering is a by-product of free will. He has all the power in the world in the life of those who devote their lives to Him but cannot interfere in the lives of those who have chosen this world over Him. And merely not making Him more important that anything else empowers the devil for the first commandment is to love the Lord first. If that is done, Satan has power. A desire to promote oneself and trample over everyone else empowers Satan. So now you can see that most of the world empowers Satan; directly or indirectly. What is the result of Satan's power so conveniently handed to him? Suffering.
So the blame goes to God when it should go to us. Maybe we should do something about the suffering. Maybe we should ask God to use us vessels to spread peace.
Why did God watch Jesus suffer? Why does He let Himself suffer? I've asked that question to Him once during the darkest hour of my life. I thought He enjoyed seeing me suffering because He did nothing. Only later did I realize that was far from the truth. Without suffering comes no spiritual refinement. How can one offer comfort to another when they have never suffered?
God does exist - the reason why He puts up with our self-inflicted pain is because He cares.
This life is a test and going through the ups/downs in life is what makes us stronger and allows us to get closer to God.
e.g. to become the top athlete one needs to go through much pain and training. In a similar way to get heaven you need to prove yourself to God.
Do you really believe and obey or are you pulling a fast one. Going through tribulation in life filters out those that simply deny GOD, to those that accept everything in life happens for a reason and that is God.
Actually, you only believe God exists. There is no evidence one way or the other. It is all pure speculation.
That is completely disconnected from reality, unless of course, the tens of thousands who starve to death every day are getting closer to God because they're dead.
One need only do nothing but give up their entire intellect and hand it over to blissful ignorance to prove themselves to God.
Another disconnect from reality that insults every single person who has ever lost a loved one to cancer, disease, etc.
Well I am a Hindu, 52 years of age ! According to me, there is a very important relationship, with what you sow is what you reap. God as you know made unlimited Earth, Water, Air, Resources for us. Mankind made money, made divisions, we got equated by Money, life could have been made simpler are more benevolent, but people became more selfish, more cruel, this created shortages in an Abundant world. So, the people got caught in a race that they created. Hence what you see are problems coming out of Mankind's version of Life.
As a Christian I honestly cannot give an answer. Only God knows why he allows things to happen and one day he will reveal his reasons to you.
Let me give that example:
Lets say you are running a marathon, and before the start of the race God declared you, because of his knowledge and wisdom, to be the winner of the marathon. What you are asking is why does not God put you in a car, or a jet plane, and take you to the finish line?
The answer is because that is against the rules of marathon running, not fair, and would not help you become a better runner.
What is the meaning of victory if it is not earned? Where is the wisdom in driving you to the finish line?
But God is cheering you on, handing you water, and yelling words of encouragement and support. He had provided you with the training, the shoes, the cloth, the knowledge, and helps you more than you can possibly imagine; he simply will not drive you or fly you to the finish line.
The answer is amazing, and it will free you in every way possible; you simply do not know enough of the facts. But it is also complicated because you must have the correct information:
Let me give a small example, or better yet, let me tell you what happened:
In the most powerful gathering that has ever been held and that represented the three different kinds of creation and God almighty, we witness the birth of humanity. And God had created humanity very weak. But as soon as humanity was made it was declared the ultimate winner, and the best of all other creations, and the most powerful entities under God were commanded to bow down to the new weak creation. And there were two different types of creation present. The angels of God are made by God never to disobey, and what God designs does not malfunction. Everything in creation must follow the design that was made for it.
We were designed different, and so was our enemy. The two of us-unlike the angels-were given the power of choice and it is the choices that we have made that brought us where we are now: asleep at the wheel and heading for the cliff. Now let me tell you about your enemy: your enemy-like us-has the power of choice and he has lived in the company of God with the angels for thousands or millions of years and had achieved so much knowledge, stature and power that is truly unimaginable and when God commanded him, the highly powerful highly knowledgeable, to bow down to us the weakest, his arrogance did not allow him to obey God, he refused to recognize us as the winners-the best of all creations. He did not have the knowledge that God had; that although mankind was created very weak it is the potential and destiny of mankind to one day defeat its number one enemy, and emerge victorious. Our enemy refused to give us the respect that we deserve so he became to us the fiercest of enemies. And as soon as the fight started he took us out of heaven started killing us and turning us against each other, and brought us to where he has us asleep at the wheel and heading for the cliff, and we are powerless to do anything about it.
Of course the answer to you is that you are strong and you are capable of defeating your enemy ON YOUR OWN, because God already declared you the winner at the moment of your birth (Humanity's birth), and helping either side is against the rules. Does that make some sense?
The reason bad things are happening is because we are missing some crucial facts:
1: Your enemy is waging war on you, and has done so since humanity's birth. He does not want you to be the winner that God had declared you to be.
2. God is your side, helps you more than you know and had already declared you the winner of everything, but he trusts you enough to defeat your enemy on your own. The Rules will not be broken.
First: What makes you think that atheists just don't know enough of the facts?
Second: can you demonstrate or prove that ANY of this is true?
There are lot of stories. A LOT of stories. They all have the same amount of proof - namely - NONE.
It's nice to have a common enemy wether it's real or not is irrelevant to those attempting to control the masses.
In terms of suffering caused by other people, traditional Christian theology suggests that a world without suffering, where people are forced to do good, would be less-good than a world with suffering where people choose to do good. In terms of suffering caused by nature, Christian theology suggests that original sin put the harmony between humanity and nature out of whack., hence the disharmony between the two until such time as it is corrected.
If god did exist and did intervene in our lives, I don't believe there is currently any way of knowing, independently of god, whether those interventions are "one big ass game", malevolent in nature, or benevolent. How could we possible make that determination? What frame of reference would we use?
They typical answer to this is "mysterious ways"--that is, the suffering has some higher purpose we are unable to understand.
LOL. The Red Pill is hard to swallow. Trust me, some days I just want to live in the fantasy world and pretend I don't know the things I know, but its too late. Can't go back.
I believe that the reason good people suffer is because there is a Devil and he is the reason for all suffering not God.I believe that things happen for a reason and only God knows the reason.We all have to go through trials and tribulations thats just life..I know that God is real because he has been there for me all my life .If it wasnt for God I would have never gotten through the things I have..I also believe that we are living in the end times and the people that remain are going to have to go through a lot worse so if the good people get taken home early its a blessing instead of a bad thing.We look at it only for how a loss effects us because we will miss that person,but that person is in a place where there is know more sickness or sorrow only happiness and that is really not a bad thing.We will get a chance to see that person again when we go home.God gives us a free will and he will not go against that will.I believe sometimes people choose to giveup and want to go home and God will never go against what we want in are hearts.
The situation with the devil includes it's own questions like the 'necessity of free will' point raised earlier.
Given that God is omnipotent the Devil must be permitted to exist for a reason (?), such as to provide humans with the option to be evil--with the corollary that some people experience suffering through no fault of their own.
So kmbacon. God saves you a bunch of times, but let Chris Neal's wife suffer for a decade? What makes you better? And that's pretty f'd up if you ask me. I hope this God a good explanation for these types of things.
From the surface to me and you it may seem to look that people experience suffring ,but I believe God will never allow us to bear mor than we can handle.I think he steps in before this happens.The reason for all of the suffering in our world is are own fault we will be are own demise .The world has gone against the principles of the bible allowing men to marry men and so on.God loved us so much that he sacrificed his own son to die painfully on the cross so that we would not be bound to hell.He knew this was the only way.We are all sinners and incapable of being perfect. .
So...if god won't give you more suffering than you can handle, does that mean that thousands of children can handle dying of starvation or cancer? Satan is only allowed to carry out suffering with gods permission - see job. It was god that made the bet with him in the.first place.
Furthermore, there is nothing wrong with gay marriage. Your Bible says all gay people should be killed, but that was over 6000 years ago, and I don't see you running around executing gays - unless you live in uganda.
Where does the bible say that ALL Gay People should be killed. Honest question...
I'm not aware of any such verses.
It depends on whether or not you wasn't to use the old tranent to justify opposition to homosexuality.
I do remember the bible saying that A Man lying with a man is an abomination. But there are many things which is an abomination. I can be wrong but I don't remember any instruction to kill two gay men unless it was the same chapter that said a man lieing with an animal both of them should be killed. Don't remember exactly what that verse said.
"If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them." (Leviticus 20:13 KJV)
I'll just point this out. Julie and I have discussed it. Leviticus was a priestly law. Meant to be followed only by the Levites (the priestly tribe of Jews in the Old Testament). It was not intended for the other 11 tribes of Israel, and it was never intended for Gentiles.
Favorite argument of atheists, but not something that any Christian (unless they are a Jewish turned Christian descended from the Levites) is bound by.
Were that the only place where comments were made, you might be able to convince Christianity, as a whole, that they are mistaken in their interpretation. It isn't. Christians have risen above many things written in the Bible which caused discrimination. This issue is another hurdle they'll eventually have to jump.
True, Emile. I recognize that there are other references to it in scripture, but most of them are references to OT law. Even in the earliest days of Christianity, it was being taught by Jews, and there are multiple places in the OT where Jesus or God the Father Himself (in Peter's case) points out quite specifically that Jewish laws do not apply to Gentiles. Of course, that could be the modern Christian's way of 'cherry-picking.' Either way, it makes sense not to apply laws written millenia ago for a specific nation of people to ourselves today, unless we've been specifically commanded by God to do otherwise.
Was the God of the bible a racist? Racist is probably not the right word as being Jewish is a religion and not a race. But as you said he was giving rules to a particular group and appeared not to care about the rest of us. Or so said the Jews of the time. We understand it's wrong to make particular rules for a particular group of people as most countries have laws making us all equal. It just strikes me odd that God would separate us and choose a particular group of people as his favourites. How strange would it be if we had laws against homosexuality only for Jews as we don't want any Jewish sperm waisted? Yes we have religious freedom and sometimes we bend the rules to adhere to that freedom, but that is different then having laws separating us on ethnicity. Isn't it?
I'm not thinking it was racist on God's part...if that were the case, his law would have applied to all semitic races and the rest of us would never have been included.
But, that's the fact of the bible. At least of the Old Testament. It was indeed inspired by God, written by Jews for Jews.
Personally, I see the concept of the "chosen people" put aside a bit in the New Testament, but that's just me.
Of course the NT is seen for all of us, but the Jews did't buy it did they? They prefer to think of themselves as the chosen people. What does this say about the OT and for the most part the NT as it was based on the OT? Inspired by God or inspired by the concept of what people can accomplish if they think they are a God's chosen people?
I think a lot of scriptures are inspired by God for a specific people in a specific time. Jews don't believe the NT is inspired scripture at all. As to how they feel or think about being God's chosen people, I'm fairly certain that at this point in history, they wish He'd have chosen someone else.
Unfortunately, all we can honestly say is the the Old Testament was written by Jews for Jews, anything beyond that is pure speculation. In the case of divine inspiration, it is highly unlikely considering how many religions boast the same claim, even though their messages are completely different.
I should have said that's the belief about the OT. I apologize for the confusion.
Leviticus 18:22 Do not lie with a man as one lies with a woman; that is detestable.
20:13 If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death; their blood will be on their own heads.
You and me are safe then... Poor Elton is a gonner though.
Maybe that's why so many "Christian" men enjoy lesbian porn. Nothing wrong with it... it's just the guy gays that deserve to die.
I always laugh when christians point to this part of Leviticus to condemn homosexuality while remaining willfully ignorant of the other death-sentence crimes in the surrounding chapters. Leviticus was a holiness code for priests, and was not even intended for the common, jewish people. Yet people want to pick out laws that are still applicable today while blatantly ignoring the ones they don't like. Lesbians are evil in the new testament, so while I may not be condemned to death, I'm certainly not considered a good person. Oh well.
"Was not intended for common Jewish people?"
That's a completely new one on me. Where did you get that?
The book itself. The book Leviticus means "relating to the Levites" which were the tribe set apart to be priests to god. They had different laws and different standards of behavior than the typical jewish population, and although a lot of these laws were culturally more widespread, they were intended to set not only the Jewish PEOPLE apart from the surrounding pagans, but to further set the PRIESTHOOD apart from everyday layperson culture. The levites were expected to adhere to a stricter standard than the jews as a whole.
Chapters 1-5 are relating solely to sacrificial offerings, which makes sense since the Levites were the ones doing the sacrificing. the rest of leviticus is debated among biblical scholars, whether it was a standard of cleanliness for all Jews or if it still maintained specifically to the priesthood. From everything I've read/studied in biblical history, it was originally intended for priests, but as Jews continued to strive for purity among the caananites, it was expanded to include the rest of the jewish people as well. I had a great article on this debate somewhere, but I seem to have lost it in the shuffle. If it resurfaces, I'll send it to you.
I would like to see it. I'll admit I haven't read Leviticus in a while but I was familiar that there is a great deal that pertains specifically to the priests in there. Still, it seems that there's also a lot pertaining to the "common" Jew at least in how they present their offerings.
It just seems sensible that many of those rules would have been also pertaining to the general population.
I think that's a large part of the problem, however, with taking a 6000+ year old book that was written specifically for a particular people at a particular time in a particular setting and a particular culture and trying to discern it's meaning, it's context and it's ramifications for life here today. I've spoken to my jewish friends about the Jewish law, and almost all of them universally maintain that the laws that governed the priesthood were far different than the laws that pertained to the common layperson. Additionally, they point out that the context of Leviticus is relevant as well. They were strangers in a strange land, and surrounded by hostile, pagan rivals. they were commanded to set themselves apart from these pagans - often by extreme measures. As Judaism grew, a lot of these laws were no longer relevant - and no longer observed by the common people, especially after the destruction of the Temple.
The destruction of the Temple is a turning point no matter how you look at it. So much of the Law dealt with the Sacrifice, yet now the one place that Jews were commanded to go in order to make that sacrifice no longer exists.
I think about that a lot.
Yes, there are difficulties with taking a document that even most evangelical theologians agree was written for a specific people in a specific time in a specific place and extrapolating that out, but then it would hardly be original to do so. Jesus commented on the fact that the Priests of His day were doing exactly that.
The Levites were one tribe of twelve of the Jewish nation, Chris. Leviticus is the law that was specifically handed down to them as the priestly class. It did not apply to the other eleven (which Julie referred to as the common Jewish people). And it most certainly did not apply to the Gentiles - as is true of all of the Jewish law.
What did and did not apply to Gentiles is a separate (but related) discussion. I'm well aware that Leviticus (or "He called" if you want to get real technical) was mostly instructions for the Levites (the clan of priests) on how to conduct themselves and the sacrifices. And I'm not one of those who point back to Leviticus as the be-all and end-all of The Law. I've written a hub where I pointed out that the Mosaic Law was not intended for Gentiles (although those who follow Jesus are a slightly different case.)
It just seems to me that some of those laws were originally meant to apply to all Hebrews, not just the Levites.
No, I don't think that the tassles was meant for the Benjamites or the Rubenites. But laws applying to bestiality and homosexuality were.
did you put those two things together accidentally or on purpose? There are a lot of sexual sins in Leviticus that you could have paired together, and I find it interesting (and a bit appalling) that you selected those two if it was anything more than coincidence.
Additionally, even if you can prove your case that the laws of bestiality and homosexuality applied to the jews in general, you would have another battle in applying them to gentiles and/or christians. How do you pick and choose which laws to follow? Did you refuse to touch your wife when she was on her period and burn every piece of clothing/furniture that she touched? That's in Leviticus to. I think that cherry-picking ancient literature becomes dangerous. You follow the lines that you agree with, disregard the ones that seem stupid and ignore the ones that you simply don't want to follow.
Here's the thing Chris, homosexuality is not a choice, and since that is the case Christians need to understand that if they believe God made us then he also made homosexuality. I've heard preachers say that we should just not act on it. This really has very little to do with sex, we fall in love with whoever we fall in love with. Would God be asking JM to live a loveless life? Marry a man and wreak his life? This just don't act on it doesn't really work out, it's what's got the vatican in trouble.
I understand that Iran has strict laws against homosexuality and they claim homosexuality doesn't exist within it's boarders. Who are they kidding?
Obviously, only themselves.
Homosexuality is a subject I have largely staid away from for precisely this reason. Some of the nicest people I've ever known are gay. And I learned a long time ago that I'm not gay, and that has nothing, nothing, nothing whatsoever to do with my being a Christian (at the time, I was surrounded by people who would not have blinked had I declared I was gay and I certainly had the opportunities to explore. And I was also not a Christian.)
I've never been quite sure what to make of the whole thing. I don't like to say that gay people are going to hell simply because they're gay. I don't believe that "God hates fags" (and I apologize to anyone who is offended. I truly don't use language like that.) Nevertheless, the verses (and here I'm not talking just Leviticus) remain. So I think a lot about that but am not sure what to make of the whole thing.
Simply this, one can remain good irrespective of the presence of god or one can remain bad in spite of god.
People who choose to be good and Christian will remain so, by ignoring the passages and beliefs (the beliefs of ancient people) while the bad will continue to insist that the holy books be kept to the word and it is that which dictate morality, to cover their shortcomings or attain their ends.
At the risk of igniting an argument that I am not intending, I feel that a clarification is in order here.
What we as human beings tend to think of as "good" does not always cut it with God. And that was true when the majority of people believed in a very OT kind of God. (As an example. Please don't say there never was such a time. It depends on where you lived.)
Which is why Jesus went to such lengths to say that many people who think they are following Him will not be getting into Heaven.
Now, I think a lot about this stuff and I don't always feel that I have an answer, but one thing I do feel pretty confident about based on reading the Bible is that a lot of what human beings consider to be "Good" or even just "Acceptable" is rejected by God. And I know that there are those who will use that to say that it just proves "God is evil" (I'm sorry!) or some such thing but that just goes to a different point I often make, which is that rather than judging God by human standards we should be judging humans by the standards of God.
Should we then set up laws pertaining to slavery as what's told in the bible?
It's not that we have it wrong, it's they had it wrong a few thousand years ago. The bible was written with the ethics of the time which should be an indication that it wasn't Gods words.
The same goes for the Quran as well when it attempts to explain the universe, it falls on it's face.
1) The bible states that we shouldn't judge at all by any standards lest we be judged ourselves
2) If we are living by what we think the bible is saying regarding good works but ultimately it isn't good enough by God's standards, then would that not imply that God left standards of living that ultimately are impossible for us to meet which means possibly we could be doing the best possible work but still lose out in the end (if hell is real)
3) If premise 2 is correct, then what was the point of Christ going on the Cross again? If he died for us and we are trying to live by his example then how can we hope to achieve heaven?
1)The Bible states that we should not judge other people, specifically whether they will get into Heaven because we are then in danger of being judged by our own yardstick and being unpleasantly surprised by what that judgement is. We must make judgements as to what is good or bad, the only other alternative is just to sit passively and wait for whatever will happen to happen.
2) This is true.
3) It is that very death which is meant to atone for our sins once and for all so that we can get into Heaven. He bore our sins upon Himself. There is no other way. The phrase "lamb of God" is literally meant that he fulfilled the function of the lamb in the Temple sacrifices, except that instead of removing specific sins for a specific person during a specific time He took away all sins for everybody for all time. We still have to accept that sacrifice and His lordship.
Okay, but you stated in your other post that we should start judging people by God's standards. I was just reminding you what the bible states regarding Judging others. We cannot really judge someone's actions by any standards either because as depending on the action the person acting may actually be doing it for a reason that isn't bad.
2) Stating that this is true, you have opened up two new problems:
A: From a Christian point of view (especially an evangelical one), this statement takes away the primary reason that some do good works. To tell someone that even in doing good they will still go to hell ups the stress level for them and also affects the teaching in some of the churches.
B: If this statement is true, it sorta reinforces the case for the atheists that even if God were real He still isn't someone to be worshiped because if we do good but still go to hell then what's the point?
Yet another can of worms opens up here. If your second premise is true and even if we do good we're going to hell, than this implies that even those who accept his sacrifice and lordship fall under that category as well.. Which leads me back to my response to your point 2. I understand that there are some that do good solely with the intention of trying to get in in an effort to buck the system, but for the rest of us, this doesn't look good for the team (especially for those who are trying to gain converts)
I'm not trying to be argumentative here, Chris. What I am trying to do is show you that even from a Christian perspective, the points you've raised basically almost makes this a no- win (or a slim margin) win for us which contradicts some biblical principles.
That's fair. When I say we need to judge men by God's standard, not God by men's standard, what I'm saying is that people who are anti-religion almost always act as if Jehovah were simply a slightly more powerful Greek god. And of course the Greek gods were projections of human beings, just with greater power. It doesn't work like that and instead of all these horrible labels people want to slap on God because they judge him by what they, the human (the creature) deems to be right and wrong, they should turn it around and think about what God (the Creator) deems to be right and wrong and why.
Obviously if people were only judged by God's standard, no one would ever make it. Which is the entire point of the sacrifice, and the Sacrifice, in the first place.
Beth was a little upset when I told her what I'm about to say to you, so don't be offended.
Are you sure that's not just a rationalization to explain the lack of ethics in of the bible? It seems to me it would be more likely these ethical dilemmas are present because the books were written by mere men with no help from God thousands of years ago.
I'm not offended, but I'd think you know me a little better than that.
Yes I'm sure.
The ethical dilemmas are present because God, although He certainly does operate in people's lives indirectly and occasionally directly, does not directly take over the body of the human being and direct what they do.
In other words, we still have free will.
In fact, if the books had been written with no help from God at any point, it seems to me more likely that either a) God would indeed be shown as helpless, and not just to those who consider anything other than micromanagement to be utter helplessness or more likely b) He would be victorious to the point where the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross would be pointless under any definition.
I haven't seen Beth around here lately. Didn't know she was still here.
Actually, from an evangelical point of view, this statement does absolutely nothing of the sort. Perhaps it's because I read reformed theologians (the Puritans are pretty typical of Reformation Theology, as of course are Calvin and Luther) but when I read the Bible I see that people are not good within themselves, and that it is only through Jesus' sacrifice that we can get into Heaven. Christians are still expected to do good, but we must understand that it's impossible to earn our way into Heaven, no matter how many or what kinds of good works we do. The Sacrifice is a gift, and if we are able to earn it then it is no longer a gift it becomes a wage, and God becomes our employer, beholden to us for wages and benefits. The Bible does not teach that.
With all due respect to my atheist friends my experience is that they don't need this reinforcement. They reached that conclusion just fine on their own. And I can understand why they would think that, to be honest. If I didn't believe in the literal existence of God I wouldn't be kindly disposed either. Although I put forth my arguments I am well aware that unless they become convinced that God actually does exist this is only intellectual exercise. And again, the point is that Jesus is the only way we get to Heaven. That's the sum total of the NT.
That next part I'm not going to quote because I don't really understand how you got there. It's like you completely skipped over the part of "His sacrifice atones for our sins" and got stuck somehow on "we earn our way into Heaven by our good works." If you believe that then you do, but to say that I'm arguing that people are going to hell no matter what is not correct. I'm saying that no one can earn their way into Heaven. But if they accept Jesus then Jesus will accept them into Heaven. So there is still a way to get there.
I don't believe I sidestepped that part at all. I got to that point because in your initial statement that started this conversation, you stated
This statement makes no mention of accepting Jesus. Once I replied with the questions you've raised, you then stated
From my perspective, this appeared to create a contradiction since your statement said that Jesus stated that people that think they are following him won't make it, then you stated that if we accept the gift of sacrifice we will get in because Jesus bore our sins on the cross. Because of this, I continued down the path that we are currently on now. As I had stated earlier, I wasn't trying to be argumentative. The way I read it is what led me to continue to push the thought for clarification.. I apologize if I misinterpreted anything, but I was continuing to ask so that I made sure I was clear about what you were saying. I really hope you weren't taking any offense or getting frustrated by me line of reasoning
I guess I made a couple of assumptions that I should not have.
You almost lumped me in with some of the others, didn't you?
I assumed that 1) as a Christian you would already work from the POV that the Sacrifice is what gets us into Heaven, not works, and 2) that you've already read enough of my postings (even recent ones) to know that is what I believe.
1) I do..
2) Your post that prompted this conversation appeared to say something something different than your norm, which prompted my questions and further comments.
Sorry. Aspergers. Sometimes I need things spelled out more directly.
Nothing to say sorry for. It's times like this that's why I try as much as I can to make sure I understand everyone as much as possible
Do you have Aspergers? I wouldn't have guest, but I'm only asking because you mentioned it and I'm sure autism is not something you joke about.
I have two children with autism, one severe, so you're right. I don't joke about it.
I have not been officially diagnosed but I have many of the "symptoms" of it.
Of course the DSM V is doing away with Aspergers as well as PDD-NOS. Look it up, I don't feel like explaining at the moment.
1. Deepes, I have passed on this previously, but really must comment, as I have seen you reference Matthew 7 many times now. When being called into account for actions or comments, I have also seen unbelievers quote this portion ad nauseum. For clarification, while it is true that no man can know with certainty another man's ultimate destination, we are clearly called to judge their words and actions in order to correct, expose, discern or even separate from them. I have not gone into great detail for the sake of brevity and to not get too "preachy", but if you are unaware of this I will be more than happy to elaborate with examples.
Even the frequently misused portion in question is not a command not to judge, it is a warning not to judge hypocritically or lightly. If I judge, will I be judged by the same measure? Absolutely! I have been, and am found sadly wanting...which is why I need a savior, (as do those whose words and actions I am called to judge). It is a call for caution and discernment that indicates you need to remove the log from your eye first...but note it does not say this cannot be done, but rather that it should be done...and then we can proceed to "judge" and counsel another. What this does mean is that correcting others is seen by God as serious business which should not be taken lightly.
I have already edited this a dozen times to shorten it, as there is so much to cover. I will leave it here for now, and elaborate further if requested.
2. I expect you know all have fallen short of the glory of God, and salvation is not of works lest any man should boast. That is the point, and the reason Christ's sacrifice was necessary. His perfect life did not pay for anyone's sins, it simply meant He did not owe the debt He paid, meaning His payment could be applied on our behalf.
3. We do not "achieve" heaven. If we could and did, that would be to our glory. Salvation is a gift, we can accept or reject, not something we can earn or deserve. If we could do it on our own, Jesus would not have had to die for our sins.
I hope this helps, and is received in the spirit in which it was intended.
You are absolutely correct, I have referenced Matthew 7 several times here on HP (and for good reason). When I mention that scripture, it's usually in response to those who simply pass judgment (condemnation) on specific posts made by others trying to correct, expose, or separate without trying to gain an understanding of a specific action or post. For example, let's say from a distance, we see a parent smack their child repeatedly upside their head. There are some who will judge the actions to be wrong from the distance of what is seen and try to correct or expose them as being abusive. But what we sometimes fail to see is that there was a bee flying around their child's head and they were frantically trying to swat it away.. (keep in mind, I'm not holding myself as exempt from this. I have been guilty of judging actions without trying to understand)
Edit: There are also some that I see here that quickly tell atheists and others that they are blinded by evil. I also have been accused of not being Christian although I do believe in what the Bible says as well as believe in Christ and the gift that was given to us
With this in mind, When I try to post, I try to ask questions for things that are not totally clear but I also try to word statements in a manner that will help me to gain understanding through clarification (such as what I did with Chris, who has replied and clarified himself further) rather than simply being dismissive or judging something to be wrong, absurd, etc.. I try to express my points in a manner of stating what concerns I see with a certain idea rather than telling someone they are wrong.
I am certainly aware that all have fallen short of the glory of God as well as everything else you mentioned. The reason for my question is that Chris' prior comment basically implied that (from his perspective) for some it doesn't matter what they do they will still go to hell regardless of the good works they do. I was pointing out the implication in an effort to understand if this is what he was truly stating.
I am also aware that salvation is a gift that we are given by God and it is up to us to accept the gift. Once again, although I probably could have worded things differently, the overall thing I was trying to do was to make sure I had an understanding of Chris's belief regarding this subject.
It was definitely received in a good spirit because i see the spirit in which it was intended to be delivered. You and I are similar in our approaches believe it or not.
Thank you for the response Deepes. I appreciated the opportunity to clarify Matthew 7. It wasn't really that I felt you were misusing it, but I know to those who don't understand the context of scripture, it makes it look like Christians are not to make judgments and speak out, when in fact we are called to do just that. To Christians, they need to make sure they are at a point where they are ready to do this, and even then it should be done thoughtfully...not emotionally, (cautionary words which apply to me as much as any).
I appreciate your desire to try to clarify Matthew 7. That scripture points more to condemnation. Not to be confused with the context of understanding (as it is expressed in other books). I try to gain understanding of others' perspectives in an effort to maintain communication. Thankfully, this has worked so far because I get in fewer debates because I understand (for the most part) a majority of the others I communicate with. I still need clarification on some things, But I try to live by the motto "Seek to understand before seeking to be understood". Once you understand someone else's point of view and the reasons behind it as well as their communication style, it becomes easier to be able to express yourself with them by choosing your words more carefully.
Like you stated, thoughtfully rather than emotionally
In that case Chris, you are doing a great sin by not following Leviticus and by not giving away any money you have.
Jesus can say whatever he likes, but one follows him only as is practical.
If I'm a Christian then why am I bound by Leviticus?
As far as I know about Christian mythology the god of NT is the same one as the OT, and the the god of nt said that not even a letter should be changed from the laws and that he had come "not to change" but to fulfil laws.
Then you would have to wonder why Jesus allowed the woman to live instead of being stoned to death, wouldn't you?
Actually, we wonder how many women have been stoned to death before and since.
That completely sidesteps both the question and the point.
Just to be clear, you didn't deal AT ALL with the point being discussed, you introduced something else into the discussion which then you attempt to make the focal point. I've been too tired and overworked lately to remember exactly which logical fallacy this is, but it is one.
The Jews are not allowed to kill by Romans, Jesus didn't have to bother about it.
But of course,like any mythology, the story is riddled with contradictions.
I'll reply to your recent post a little later, I am trying to find out the hub you mentioned. Quite a lot of hubs you have.
That completely sidestepped the point.
Okay, let me rephrase, why didn't Jesus say, "I would say stone her as the Law commands except of course the Romans won't let us."
When I said contradiction, I meant contradiction within the nt, jesus sometimes did say contradictory things.
He said no letter shouldn't be changed then he said not to kill for adultery, isn't it a contradiction because ot say to kill.
What He said was that the person who was without sin should cast the first stone.
I guess saying that you shouldn't kill because of adultery is one way of looking at it but honestly, in almost 47 years of both being Christian and being NOT Christian, I have never ever heard anyone else say that. The more accepted interpretation would be along the lines of "Judge not lest ye be judged." He was saying that it's all well and good to uphold the Law but that if you yourself have broken it then who are you to judge?
The way I understand the verse is that Jesus was saying something like (with hillbilly slangg" Yep du law duz say it be by law we can kill the whore; but it don't say we gotta! ?... Hay guys, lets awl look at everybodys sins and maybe, While we already got it going ,... we might want to do some more judgin after we stone this Sinner? Do ya want ta but first what do you wanta doo this this young woman?
One glaring problem with Chris's interpretation is that by his argument Jesus could have killed the woman. Since he didn't, that probably isn't the right interpretation.
Not at all. I said no such thing. Most commentaries I've read don't even put forth that Jesus was being asked to kill the woman, just whether He would go along with what the Teachers of the Law and the Priests had decreed to be the correct interpretation of the Law, which left no room for mercy.
In all likelihood they probably hoped He would say she should be stoned so they could turn Him over to the Romans for doing something illegal under Roman law.
I disagree, but I try to take the most direct approach to understanding. Jesus was known by then for keeping company with those looked down on. Didn't he have a tax collector as a disciple? He said something about people complaining that he was a drunkard because he enjoyed a party, as opposed to John who had an austere life. I think, the question was asked simply because they knew he would show mercy and they believed it would make him look bad to those standing about. I don't think anyone thought he would advocate her death. Such behavior would be completely alien to the rest of his ministry.
YUP That is the reason them other guys was suposed-ta hav brung Jesus in to it for.. ta do
IF the story was added later.. these two understandins wuz the only lesson I cud see in it ta try to understand.
Then he was giving the most intelligent reply, wasn't he? Given the situation he could neither convict nor acquit.
That's one way of looking at it, and although I don't think that the was the main thrust of the story I also don't think that's an unfair assessment of one aspect of it. Whether or not this particular story is apocryphal, there were many stories where the priests and teachers of the law were attempting to catch Jesus in some kind of trap (even the Herodians at one point, no friends of the Pharisees, were in on it.) And He consistently gave answers that confounded everyone.
I don't know ?? I can see two different realities attempting to be formed?
Which printing of the Bubba translation was that from?
I wanted to say a certain state just uses a form of symbols instead of words, but I think Emile will give me a verbal smack down.
I believe you may have been thinking of the State of Incoherence.
Incoherence Aint no state ..... It's a town bout 60 miles north of Little Rock Ark.
10 miles north of Little Rock is Big Rock
15 miles north is Rolling Rock
23 miles north is Rocking Roll
37 miles north is Beersville
42 miles north is Whiskeyville
55 miles north is Inebriation
60 miles north is Incoherence
So you go from Little Rock to Big Rock to Rolling Rock To Rockin Roll to Beersville to Whiskeyville to Inebriation to Incoherence.
No one ever remembers.
Probably not. I have no idea what you are talking about.
Anyway, when have I ever given you a verbal smackdown? I thought we were simpatico.
I was afraid I was getting close one day when I said something about "all y'all". Remember?
I can't really talk now. I made the best dinner mankind has ever seen and I have to eat it. (Yes, I took step by step pictures or it would have been a total waste.)
You might be correct. The problem is that I live in Indiana, and I truly knew I was becoming a Hoosier (sorta) when I started laughing at Kentucky jokes.
Close one. I had to look up Hoosier because I thought you were implying you were so close to Canada that you were becoming a Hooser eh? I was abouut to tell you to take off, eh
Actually I find that doubly funny because when I first met my late wife that was what I thought too. She used to get mad at me when I would make "take off" jokes.
"A Hoosier is not a hoser!" she would yell.
Having lived in Indiana, I don't know. I love this place but some of the people here... put a touc on 'em. They already have the beer.
The funny thing about this (and Chris especially, i'm pretty sure that you agree with me here). The story of Jesus and the Prostitute was not in the original manuscripts. It wasn't added for hundreds of years. This is a fact that is accepted by most secular and religious biblical scholars worldwide, so to use this to make a point seems a bit silly to me.
Christian source's commentary:
http://www.christianitytoday.com/ct/200 … -31.0.html
http://www.dallasobserver.com/2008-04-2 … scripture/
Yes, it's true that this is not in the earliest manuscripts. I'm leery of Christianity Today, and to be fair the Dallas Observer was simply reporting on the Christianity Today article, but I pulled out my handy-dandy Johnny Mac ESV (if you don't get the reference, just trust me. This is about as conservative evangelical as it gets.) And the footnote on the passage said this:
"This section dealing with the adulteress most likely was not a part of the original contents of John. It has been incorporated into various manuscripts at different places in the Gospel (e.g. after vv. 36, 44,52, or 21:25), while one manuscript places it after Luke 21:38. External manuscript evidnce representing a great variety of textual traditions is decidedy against its inclusion, for the earliest and best manuscripts exclude it. Many manuscripts mark the passage to indicate doubt as to its inclusion. Significant early versions exclude it. No Greek church father comments on the passage until the twelfth century. The vocabulary and style of the section also are different from the rest of the Gospel, and the section interrupts the sequence of John 7:52 with 8:12ff. Many, however, do think that it has all the earmarks of historical veracity, perhaps being a piece of oral tradition that circulated in parts of the Western church, so that a few comments are in order. In spite of all these considerations of the likely unreliability of this section, it is possible to be wrong on the issue, and thus it is good to consider the meaning of this passage and leave it in the text, just as with Mark 16:9-20."
There is a whole book about this (several, I'm sure) out there to be written (probably already have been) that take into account Biblical scholarship, criticism, history and theology. Points that are not touched on at all in the CT piece (and again, bless the Observer but it was simply a rehash of the talking points of the CT article. Meaning it added nothing at all to the discussion.)
MacArthur, who is not usually given to such equivocation, has a point. Consider the meaning. But the fame of this particular passage does not mean it is the only passage you can cite in a discussion, and if someone refuses to accept it don't get hung up on it.
Muh hillbilly done got a little rusty with me not usin' it too much and all. I gots tuh read it a few more tahms to be persuaged Ah unnerstands whut yuh'z sayin.
Why has he not thinking the same when he was talking to the jews hardly 1000-1400 years before? Then he didn't say 'throw stone only if you have not sinned'.
So glad you mentioned this...I jumped on it as soon as I saw it. Where is lesbianism condemned in the NT? I don't remember ever seeing it?
Start at Romans 1:18 through the rest of the chapter, The word lesbian isn't used but little doubt what the writer is talking about.
and oh please enlighten me. What is the CONTEXT of what the writer is writing about?
Before you answer this question, keep two things in mind:
1) JM (though atheist) is a bible scholar with a degree.
2) JM is a lesbian
Edit: Sorry, J.. I had to give the warning
*smirks* Deepes, you're ruining all of my fun. I was looking for a new toy to chew on.
He has a kind soul, Deepes does. And he just wants to give 'em a fighting chance.
oh I want them to have a fighting chance too. It's no fun if they just flop over and play dead before it even gets going.
Right?! All the good hunters are that way, J.
Right?! All the good hunters are that way, J.
that is IF they ever respond. Deepes may have frightened them off :-) I don't know if we're intimidating, exactly, but we are a crapload of awesome.
If y'all are doing the chasing, Can I be the prey?? oh wait, it's not that kind of hunt, is it?
do you have an innate desire to be ripped to shreds? If not, then I don't think you would enjoy it very much.
Since when have you seen any theist just flop over and die on these forums?
surprisingly, I've ran into a couple who hit-and-run posts like crazy. When confronted, they curl up into a little faith ball and just pray that the atheist will go away. It makes me sad, really. I like a challenge.
You know that happened to me the other day. Someone really wanted to read me the riot act, and when I responded (with questions even), he completely ditched me.
Eh. His loss. I'm lots of fun.
Let me guess, simply the "you're going to hell and that's my last word to you" types?
yep. They don't want to be questioned, and the don't want to be forced to defend defenseless beliefs. When questioned, they just retreat, stick their fingers in their ears and start singing amazing grace until you go away. Unfortunately for them, I don't go away well. *smirks* It's fun in a completely different sense.
**Sticks fingers in ears** LA LA LA LA LA LA I'm not listening...LOL!!
I miss all the fun, just cause I gots kids and stuff that require silly stuff like food and baths and sleep.
And before anyone asks, I can prove I have kids... and anyone who requires such proof will have a random number of children (between 1 and 4, I'll role a die) show up on your doorstep... with suitcases.
Melissa - I fully accept on faith that you have children. Please don't roll a die on my behalf. I'm great with kids - in as much as I can load them up with chocolate and water guns - and then give them back to their respective parents.
I got the atheist to accept something on faith...
I win the internet.
No worries, when faced with the prospect of having my children it is not uncommon for people to have sudden religious experiences.
Namely a sudden surety that hell is real... and a desire to strap a bomb to themselves and run into a crowd.
You just had a little religious experience cause you were coming from way farther back on the spectrum.
*giggles* that's perhaps a string of the funniest posts that I've ever encountered. Thank you for improving my Monday :-)
We miss you too Melissa!!
No need to prove it to us.. we believe you
Nah. The person in question didn't believe in hell.
A kind soul? look at the post in question.. Does it look like they will be afraid of a warning? Perhaps maybe I said it hoping to touch a nerve or two to get it going.
Chew on? HMMM... nevermind, I'm not gonna touch it
Even when I was not a Christian (and I was VERY not a Christian) I never understood why guys like to look at that. I just can't fathom it.
I do believe you missed your calling then. You are apparently far more suited to become a Buddhist monk than a Christian.
I refuse to explain on the grounds it may incriminate me.
I've started to post comments that addresses this issue.
i think I read someplace "the power of life is in the sperm" and another about it being in the blood.
My only argument about gay men would be that in my mind it seems to be detrimental for a mans sperm to be deposited within that organ that is designed to absorb "whatever" directly into the blood stream.
It also seems very possible that when a man’s body absorbs sperm into his body, this somehow alters the genetics of the man, and also that this effects the genetics of his of spring "If" he later has any. There are many things which we do to ourselves that can harm generations to come.
I'm not a doctor nor do I know if any of that has any truth, But it seems to me that it would have to, to some extent.
So children’s genetic abnormalities can be caused by the "sins" of their forefathers. Not that they are purposefully passed out as punishments, but simply facts of life.
I often wondered how all that LSD that was used in the 60s affected the psychological abnormalities that are prevalent in many of the 40 year olds in society today.
Shouldn't anything that we do today that has harmful affects on generations to come be called a sin?
It is none of our jobs to pass judgments .... I think … no harm no foul
It makes far more sense to look at illnesses and genetic abnormalities and even homosexuality for that matter as Darwin did. Random genetic changes that propel evolution. If the changes work, they get passed on, if not they don't. We don't need to blame anyone for mistakes made by anyone. I have a cousin with a 7 year old son of in the deep dark middle of a bone marrow transplant, do we need to add guilt to his parents table? Do we tell Chris his wife passing was his fault? Do we tell anyone who has lost a child (my complete sorrow to Melissa and Mo and any others who've lost a child) that it was their doing?
The only people who gain are those who do the accusing. It makes their lives make more sense as it confirms that they have done everything right. Until something happens to them, and I've seen when that happens.
Thank you, Rad.
And I think there's a lot - a whole lot - of sense in what you've said here. Nature does what nature must to protect and renew itself as far as I can see.
I hope this doesn't come across apearing arguementive, It isn't intended that way.
I wasn’t intending to be placing blame upon anyone for any particular action and reaction. It just seems that everything I have done in this life has had a direct effect upon it. Some of those things still affects my children today. My financial success and failures affect their lives. I do believe that everything that I have done or not done which affects my bodily chemistry before my children were conceived had an effect upon their body chemistry. If I had or my father or grandfather did things which affected me in any of these ways, should I blame myself or them, certainly not!
Nor should we blame an unseen entity for allowing me or my forefathers for our contribution to the evolution processes.
Society takes credit for our scientific advances. We should also take credit for all the little side effects which are caused from those advances. The food preservatives we take into our systems, the recreational drugs and those prescribed by our doctors, all have their positive and negative effects upon society both today and in the decades and sometimes generations to come.
I think this is the reason for many the dietary laws which were established 3500 years ago. Do these same laws still apply today? Many of them don’t, I think, because that would be like closing the barn door after the horse has gotten out. Society as a whole has been on this path for a long time, and I don’t know what can drastically change the path we are on or alter our momentum.
When a train or plane crashes who should we blame, The builder?
I agree with you. We should not be throwing blame around. We should not live in a state of sorrow for ever. If we know there is something we "can" do to prevent something bad from happening ...“again”... and don’t, maybe that is a different story.
And, in the exactly the same context, we should not be throwing praise around, especially to invisible sky daddies.
The guy in the sky. The big cheese, The head honcho. The figment of many's imagination.
Did the thousands of priests who raped and molested little boys read this before or after they stuck their penises in those young MEN?
what about it? I find it interesting that in Romans, similar to the passover story in Egypt god "turned them over" to homosexuality, like he hardened Pharaoh's heart, when Pharaoh was fully inclined to let the Israelites go, just so god could keep plaguing him and his people. This is not a topic about homosexuality in the bible. It's about suffering and sin in the world. I am fully aware of what Romans says - especially in the context of the passage which specifically relates to idolatry and temple cult prostitution. It says nothing about a sexual orientation. Furthermore, I would maintain that if someone was to be born gay and they try to "force" themselves into straight relationships to try to comply with societal or god's laws, THAT is unnatural. There is nothing unnatural about being gay. Is it a minority? Sure. If it wasn't, the human race would die out. But the fact of the matter is that all sorts of animals practice some form of homosexuality - even exclusively in some cases - and since animals don't "sin" and they're acting based on their instincts, it would appear to be entirely natural - whether you like it or not. How many times do you see two male dogs humping each other? Do you tell them that they're sinning? Do you stone them to death? I'm assuming not. There is a big difference between a committed, monogamous relationship and a same-sex lust fling - especially in the context of idol worship or temple cults, and the research keeps pointing to a combination of nature and nurture which influences homosexuality. I would maintain that, if your god existed, he would have made me this way. I had my first crush on a girl when I was in 4th grade. I was not molested nor did I (at least at that point) have a negative experience with someone of the opposite sex. Are you really going to tell me that at 9 I consciously made that choice, knowing that I would be mocked, ridiculed, physically assaulted and be called names for the rest of my life?
You say that the suffering in the world is because of humans but also that God can step in and intervene when he wants to. So that's the question, why doesn't he stop children from starving, being abused, getting cancer, etc.? We go through it and "handle it" because we have to.
just because I'm currently watching a documentary on Auschwitz, Germany, the Nazi policy and the holocaust, i'm pretty sure that the 8 million people who were exterminated in camps around Europe during WWII would disagree with your assessment. I'm pretty sure that they DID, in fact, experience a lot more pain, suffering and grief than they could handle - and millions of them died horrible, wasting deaths. This included men, women and children - Jews, gypsies, children, homosexuals, twins and more. You're telling me that sin caused this - that these people somehow deserved what they got because they were sinful? How moral is that? How moral are you to assert such a detestable, deplorable and indefensible position?
Tens of thousands of children starve to death every day praying for God to step in with a morsel of food.
Religions are our demise.
So, men marrying men is a problem for you?
Gods can't die, so his son never died, it was all faked to fool everyone.
You have to be kidding. Do you know anything about history? Slaves used to hang from trees (Who the f can handle that). I do not agree with the, "gives us all we can handle and steps in when its too much crap".
If God exists, he is an incredibly malevolent being who should be destroyed and/or imprisoned at all costs.
I've found that if you ignore him he goes away. It appears only the critical thinkers can look at the God of the bible and Quran for what they are. There are those who are afraid to ask the difficult questions.
What about those of us who ask the difficult question yet still conclude there is a God?
Good question. The OT, the NT, the Quran and the book of mormon all are description of what God wants of us, none more valid than another. Which ones get ruled out? Which ones were not Gods words? Which were fabrications? All of us want to live forever in peace and harmony, but just because we want to doesn't make it possible. Is reality too difficult for some? Pick a book and run with it, it doesn't matter which one as each followers of the books all make the same claims.
Following one of those books does not necessarily mean you don't deal with reality. And, as some of the hubbers in these forums so amply attest, failing to deal with these books is no guarantee that you're dealing with reality.
I don't know that much about the Book of Mormon or the Quran. I do know that the Bible, whether you only accept the OT or believe the whole thing, attests that peace is not going to happen here on earth, at least not as a long term condition. There will always be strife. Take religion away and there will always be strife. If everyone were to be the exact same religion there would still be strife. That's reality. A reality that many don't want to deal with, and so they believe that if religion were wiped away we would magically have some Aquarian age of peace, love and understanding (and what's so funny about that?)
And of course if history had ever shown that a lack of religion actually led to any kind of utopia, you would get a lot more people trying it. But in places where it has been officially imposed, it still hasn't lead to any kind of great society. If anything, exactly the opposite. Yet when confronted with this fact, those who believe strongly in that system always fall back on "They didn't do it right." Gee, that was sure dealing with reality.
A lot of people like to say that all the great religions are consistent in the big points and differ on the small points. It's actually the opposite. God is not God in the Book of Mormon. Allah is not the same as Jehovah, and belief in Jesus as God the Son would be utter blasphemy as well as quite beyond the imagination of most Muslims. And I don't say that hyperbolically. I used to live next door to a Muslim and we had a couple of conversations. He was a really nice guy and I certainly didn't push it, when I saw him getting upset I backed away. He agreed to the conversations and we wound up finding that we didn't agree on hardly anything religiously. He is a Sunni and no radical. No beard, he didn't make his wife wear a hijab. He gave me a Quran, which I read some until my wife made me throw it away. The Quran teaches that such a thing is simply not possible.
The point of that being, just picking a book and running with it is actually not a good idea.
Some of us that ask the difficult question yet still conclude a belief in God usually have developed a different understanding of God than is normally set out in mainstream.
You can't be mad at this guy for being mad at God. It just seems really evil to let people suffer if you have the power to stop it. Can't wait till "The Man of Steel" comes out. Might be a fantasy, but so to might be the bible. At least Superman uses his powers to help people. If he heard a person cry for help he would get up put his cape on and help that person.
It seems to me a good account has to include people given things they did not handle or could not meaningfully be said to be able to handle, like a baby born with a genetic defect that kills them before or immediately after birth.
You only have to read the book of Job to figure most of this out. Job was a very righteous man in the sight of God. Satan approaches God and wants to test Job. God limits Satan, to you can do whatever you want to those around Job, but you can't touch Job. Satan proceeds to kill off all of Jobs children, and take all of Jobs wealth. Satan again approaches God, and says he wants to test Job further, and God allows it. God is constantly working to build our character up for His service. God, having our salvation and happiness at heart will allow Satan to test us sometimes. God does this to make us stronger, not to punish us, although sometimes it feels like punishment.
I was abused by a relative at the age of 8, for along time I wondered why. Then one day God lead me to a recovery program, where I discovered I could help others that had been abused. That has been a blessing to me and God. Our mess becomes God's Message.
The other aspect of this question has to do with bad things happening to good people, these people could be like Job going through a trial. It could also be, that God looking at their hearts, knows something we don't know, looking in from the outside. I hope this helps.
I'm truly sorry you were taken advantage of, it's incredible unfair.
"Satan proceeds to kill off all of Jobs children, and take all of Jobs wealth. Satan again approaches God, and says he wants to test Job further, and God allows it."
To bad god didn't consider Jobs family or Job for that matter. Instead he's making bets with Satan. Who in their right mind would treat their children that way.
So God just buddies up with Satan and says yea lets F with this guy Job? I don't get it. No wonder that word "Job" is now used to describe "struggling" as most of us do every day when we go to work and half our money goes right back to the system that then uses it to line there already fat pockets.
How does that explain someone like an unborn baby going through a trial of fatal congenital illness when they cannot do anything about it one way or the other?
A common question of unbelievers is,"If ther is a God, why does He allow war,birth defects,disease,etc.?'Since they know in their hearts that God must exist,what they are really asking is,"Why doesn't God use His power to stop or change things?'
The reason for wars,birth defects,disease,and othr problems that plague humanity is that Sin has caused them.They did not exist until sin came into the world.Because of what sin,selfishness,and Satan have done to human society,and the planet,God has seen necessary to do for man what man can not do for himself.
Through Christ,God provides a solution to the ills of the world.The victory of the redeemed is not that they transform the world,but that they overcome the world by the transforming power of God's Spirit in them.Through Christ,His Spirit resurrects them from death in trespasses and sins,and lifts them in their spirits into a realm of faith above the world system and its iniquity.People transpose the ills of society from self and Satan to God.Our problem is not that God is unfaithful,but that man is unfaithful.Transposition is a common error in man.
We must realize our persprctive is not God's.Ours is based on what we see naturally.We don't understand as God understands,which is the reason we must act by faith.In the midst of our greatest crisis His Transcendent Glory is to take what was meant for evil and turn it around and make it work for our good.
Okay, i'm going to stop you right after your first paragraph. You asserted "since they know in their hearts that god must exist"
This assumption is wrong. Just flat out wrong. Why do you assume people that lack a belief in god know, in fact, that a god exists but deny him? Nothing could be further from the truth.
I am not an atheist because I had bad experiences as a missionary, a theology student or a biblical scholar, although I had many bad experiences. I am not an atheist because I am uninformed about christianity or I don't know what I'm talking about - quite the contrary. I'm an atheist because there has simply been no proof of god presented that has stood up to scrutiny. People have been trying to prove god for over 6000 years, to no avail. If there was real, verifiable proof of god, there would be no atheists. There would still be anti-religionsists who would refuse to worship a god they deemed cruel or immoral, but there would not be people insistent on denying a god's existence.
Were evidence ever presented for any god determined to be sufficient, I would be faced with a choice. I could either accept that god and agree to worship him/her/it, or I could reject it - not because I didn't believe it existed, but because I rejected its principles, morality or ethics. You seem to have little understanding about atheists and other non-believers, and you seem to completely discount the millions of others who accept a belief in a god, but it's a different god than the one you presuppose.
The rest of your post is little more than a short sermon. It's what you believe, but nothing you can demonstrate or prove to anyone else. It's a story in a few thousand year old book that has been altered, subtracted, added to and translated hundreds of times. You believe that book is true, probably because you were told it was. Have you really examined it for yourself?
This guy has a point. All these years where is the proof? If science can explain how we came from nothing and have the brain capacity to question our existence I will then have to take his route and debunk belief in God. Until then I have to believe all of this was created meaning there must be a creator. I just don't know why things have to be like this. I understand we have free will so there will always be suffering....we do have ourselves to blame as far as cancer and alot of other things. we created tvs, cell phones, microwaves, radio towers, etc. i guess maybe God is just letting us stew in our on juices. I can live with that. But if he is helping some people and not others, I have an issue with that. It is not JUST, it is not RIGHTEOUS.
Wow, and I thought my kid died because of a combination of bad genetics and random chance. It's nice to know that it was because of sin.
In response to another post of yours it's also nice to know that God doesn't give us more than we can handle. Spoken like someone who has never been given too much to handle... Unless ativan and mental institutions were part of God's plan, God did indeed give me more than I could handle.
But hey thanks for downplaying my grief! Nice talking to you.
I did not know that your child died. I'm sorry. I can relate.
I mention it on occasions, especially when I'm feeling upset about it anyway and a post pushes the thought even more forward.
I know you can relate and thank you for your sympathy.
We have quite a bit in common, you know. We just argue a lot about the things we disagree on.
You and Rad Man. If I wasn't such a firm Calvinist we'd probably have nothing to argue about at all.
Melissa I feel your pain. I'm going through some rough times myself right now. I am glad we have a forum to communicate and share our experiences and mind states.
I see no logic in the sin of people in the past causing suffering to babies now. That explanation seems the least logical and least fair to me. By comparison "mysterious ways" is much more palatable.
I wouldn't flatter yourself red pill. This reality is a pimple in eternity. Suffering is the pus, to put it crudely. No one minds asking why God allows it. What we don't want to discuss is how much of it is self inflicted.
How much starvation would there be, if we fed our neighbors? How much disease is attributable to natural causes, that we have the means to alleviate? How much disease is directly attributable to pollution of our resources and our life styles?
Name one thing that causes suffering and an honest evaluation will show that we not only allow it in some instances, but attribute to it in others. I have family who have died from cancer. Painful deaths. God didn't do that. We did. And starvation is no one's fault but our own. God is our scape goat.
I can really get behind this answer, Emile. I once saw someone say that the reason they were afraid to ask God the really tough questions: Why do you allow starvation? Why do you allow disease? Why do you allow homelessness, etc., was because they were afraid of what would happen when He asked them the same questions.
I agree Emile we did do this to ourselves and we still do. I said that in a response before I even read your comment. What I have a problem with is the what if's. Some say that God "helped" them or "saved" them a bunch of times. If this is true what makes them deserving of savoir and others not?
We as humans are biologically fitted to survive. This is explained by Darwinism. The world changed around us even without our wrong doing and we had to survive. That survival instinct is what keeps you and everyone else from giving all your money and food to the poor. Fear of your own extinction. So it all goes back to the creator. The world changed us and then we changed the world in order adapt to survive.
We all live in the same reality. What we can't do is view reality exactly as the next person. I have no more of a problem with someone saying shame on God than I do with someone saying his ways are mysterious. What I do scratch my head at is why, over all of these centuries, we ponder God's involvement, while not attempting to resolve our own.
I suppose, it is to show that we do care, but are not empowered to effect change. And, maybe that is true, individually; but aren't we ensuring we continue to be ineffectual by continuing to discuss God's responsibility to us? No matter what I think on the subject of God at any given moment, I can't blame suffering on the cosmos. Because I know I don't do all within my power to make a difference. If I don't why would I expect a higher power to?
That makes no sense, there is only one way to perceive reality, in which reality has complete control over that perception. Reality does not change from person to person.
Perceived reality does, however. And I suspect every single human being on earth is wrong about some parts of it.
I know what i believe but I also know that some profoundly wise people disagree with me. So there should, IMHO, be a level of uncertainty about anything, which allows discussion without insult.
A rose is a rose is a rose...
If it is not perceived as a rose, to what is it perceived that is not a rose?
A rose is a rose. Yet, your understanding of what a rose is is completely different from another. You may perceive a rose as a beautiful and fragrant flower. Another may perceive a rose as a dangerous plant; evidenced by the stitches in a finger from raking it across a thorn. Another might be allergic, so perceives the rose as a thing to be avoided, at all costs. The rose remains unchanged, no matter how it is perceived. Consensus of belief doesn't effect the fact that the rose exists, nor does it change what it is. However, your opinion of the rose doesn't negate the reason for another person's opinion of the rose.
But its still a damn Rose. The reality is its still a damn rose. If you blend it up and put it in your morning smoothie, its still a damn rose.
No, it isn't. My understanding is the understanding of what reality exhibits the rose, just like everyone else.
Sorry, but we all perceive those qualities of a rose, regardless of whether we prick our fingers or are allergic.
Yes, I understand you operate on belief systems, that would be the problem on your part not being able to understand a rose.
We aren't talking about opinions, however I understand your reading comprehension skills lack the necessary synthesis to understand we aren't talking about opinions.
Your need to insult has grown tiresome. Proceed with your delusions ATM. I wish you the best with them.
As usual, nothing to say. Of course, your insults are not tiresome?
If I have insulted you in this conversation, then I apologize. I don't think I have. It would be a matter of perception if you thought I had.
However, your inability to understand philosophical discussions is not my fault.
Do you consider that an insult after an apology?
No. It wasn't meant as one. Face it. You will not participate in a philosophical discussion. Not that I have ever seen on this forum. You constantly attempt to belittle my contributions by comments that have nothing to do with the subject being discussed. Heck, you spent three pages yesterday insisting the use of the words 'we' and 'you' were somehow debatable.
Honestly, at most moments, I find your odd manner of participation interesting. However, insulting me by insisting I have reading comprehension problems (which we both know is not true) has run its course. I don't like to be in a position to trade insulting barbs. I won't do it anymore and I won't continue any more exchanges with you when you stoop to it.
Then, don't accuse others of the same thing.
If you don't consider your behavior insulting, that's your refusal to attempt to consider how your behavior affects others.
At least I had the decency to offer an apology when you claimed you felt insulted. I hadn't insulted you, yet I offered it anyway out of respect for your feelings.
Either way, I've lost any respect I might have had. I won't be reading your posts anymore. It's a waste of time.
I usually reply to him with basically "Yes dear, whatever you say". It has the dual qualities of being both condescending and an unarguable dismissal.
It's been effective for me.
You mean you'll actually stop misreading posts and comment on what people actually say? I'm shocked.
Whatever delusion works best for you ATM.
And, thanks. I'm playing a game of scrabble. I wasn't happy with the points available with the choices I could see. I saw you had posted and, suddenly, I realized I could run the word troll down another word and score big.
And, there I was convinced your responses had no value. I stand corrected.
Yes, I can imagine when one is wrong, that would work to soothe a bruised ego.
I did not say, or imply, that reality changes from person to person.
"Because I know I don't do all within my power to make a difference. If I don't why would I expect a higher power to?"
HOW ABOUT THE FACT THAT ITS A HIGHER POWER. You can not compare yourself to a higher power. the comparison is illogical. Based on what we are to believe God can not be compared to anyone or thing.
As far as reality goes, we may not even know what that is. we could all be spirits trapped inside a human shell. we could all be in the matrix right now oblivious to the "real world". We base reality on what we see, hear, taste, feel etc. What if those senses are manufactured? But that's a different topic for another day.
I disagree. Probably since, if there is a God, I'm not certain what good would come of treating a species capable of understanding cause and effect the same as a species incapable of reasoning would be treated. If we can solve our problems, but refuse to since a higher power could do it...what does that say of our philosophy?
More is expected of someone who has ultimate power and control.
Do we expect the President to act like us? I could punch someone in the face if they disrespected me. If the POTUS did that how would we look at him? "With great power comes great responsibility." A quote from a comic book that means more to me than anything in the GOOD BOOK.
Well, I've never been one to attempt to transfer blame. But, speaking of the president; if we acted like the presidents do we would be jailed in some cases, tried for crimes against humanity in others.
I have no idea what railing at the unfairness of life accomplishes other than to avoid responsibility. If there is eternal life after this reality, whatever we suffer here and now will mean nothing there. It matters here, where we all share existence. There is no god sharing this existence, on this level. Whether one exists, or not, is a philosophical question. Suffering is not. It lives among us. To approach suffering with philosophical questions serves no good to anyone. If we agreed as to what the responsibilities of a God would be, does that alleviate suffering? Does it serve any purpose, to anybody besides the comfort of transferring blame?
The bible never says "God wont give us more than we can handle." That is an old wives tale.
He does promise to never leave us or forsake us no matter what.
It is also very high on my list of "punchable" phrases. Those are the phrases that I believe when uttered to someone in a time of extreme emotional stress, that it should be completely legal to punch the utterer in the mouth.
Every cloud has a silver lining.
Everybody has problems.
Look on the bright side
And anything resembling "When this happened to my (brother, sister, mother, father, self)"
During a funeral please include:
"He's in a better place"
"Time heals all wounds"
"I'll miss him too"
"Everything happens for a reason"
AND MY ALL TIME FAVORITE (for a mother that lost a child)
You're young, there's still time to have another.
Had I not been semi-catatonic with grief, that woman would have not one tooth left in her mouth.
Edit: I would also like to include from a recent forum... God lost a son too.
How long did it take until you were able to function again?
I'll let you know when it happens.
It took two months to get out of the loony bin though. So I guess I was functional by some standard at that point.
Yeah, this one got me too. Especially considering it was my question being answered
That promise gets broken tens of thousands of times every day.
You mean God breaks His promise? But you don't think He's real.
You make no sense sir.
Hmmm... although this has been explained to you several times, you continue to bring it up. Perhaps, the words I used in previous explanations were too difficult to understand? Should I use single syllable words? Dumb it down to a child's level of understanding?
How does one explain something to you?
Sherlock Holmes isn't real, either, but I am still able to analyze his actions and draw conclusions about his character. Same rule applies.
I am not sure that a putative sentient being that is both omnipotent and omniscient could be said to have a character/personality etc.
Oh, trust me; I know plenty. I know that he commands parents to kill their children at the very first instance of disobedience (which would occur around age 2 or so?), he tells men that it's okay to rape women as long as they give her father some pocket change and then force her to marry him, he also tells men that women who have sex before marriage should be tortured until they die, and that anyone who doesn't believe in Him should be tortured and beheaded. And he will send all non-Hebrews into the darkness of Hell for their transgression of not being born to the right parents.
...But he loves you!
"B-B-But Paul said Gentiles could avoid Hell!"
Paul was a spy sent by Rome to dismantle the Judeo-Christian movement and/or pacify it so that they wouldn't turn on Rome. Not to mention, he was Jewish and this new movement that blasphemed his religion would have disgusted him, and he would do anything to pervert it and watch it fade away (which is why he advocated celibacy, too!).
All we know is what is written about God's Character in a few old books and those books do not reveal a good character. Have you modified your God to suite your needs?
There is a god, but each person is selfempowered. If you think and believe and not aware of what you believe you can plant seeds of bad things for yourself. God did not make bad things happen You did. How does a person see his own believes. Slow down in life, get away from it all, quiet time. You will start to see how what you believe becomes true. Is it god or is it you that is creating bad things.
Well you have to distinguish between two types of that problem, namely the problem of evil. The problem of evil can apply both to moral evils and to natural evils. Moral evils being people committing crimes that harm others, and natural evils being something like the existence and life cycle of a virus. Theist (not me) tend to work out the moral problem succesfully in a philosophical sense. Their argument tends to go something like this: we have freewill, given to us by god. This good is a greater good than lets say taking that freewill away to protect people. A common analogy given is that a parent lets their children run outside in the woods, even though the chances of them getting hurt are there. They do this because they know the benefit of allowing that child the freedom to do so. So the theist make a stronger case for the moral problem of evil. What is particularly interesting is the natural evil argument. If there is an all powerful, all good god out there, why not create a world in which viruses did not exist, that basic human physiological systems did not break down so dramatically, at young ages (children dying of leukemia, other cancers) and the like. We all know this argument all too familiar and the theist is generally stuck (in a philosophical sense, theologically they can do anything they want...).
LOL By all means..Toilet to the left.. I'll hold your hair back for you
Point to ponder. The only thing you know is that JM claims to be a Bible scholar. People make all kinds of claims on these forums. Having read her posts in the distant past, I saw no evidence to support that claim. We do have a poster with a PHD in Theology, so comparing the two is like apples and oranges.
Secondly, what does someone's sexual orientation matter? Why must someone be warned of it?
lol... question it all you want. I don't really care if people believe me or not - it is what it is. I know the truth, and the people that truly know me know the truth. What anonymous hubpage posters think of it or my background is ultimately irrelevant. I don't particularly care one way or another. I don't need to prove myself to you or anyone else.
I wasn't asking for proof. That is the great thing about this environment. Your words prove who you are. And who you aren't. I, too, don't care what anyone thinks I am, or am not. (I probably shouldn't have included the word too in that)
I don't have an ax to grind.
that's not necessarily true. I've seen people with no secondary advanced education put forth brilliant arguments that have blown me away. I've seen PHD scholars put forth arguments that a fifth grader can refute. This environment may be good for many things, but it's not necessarily an accurate judge of character on all fronts, and judging a person's intelligence, background or mental philosophy is flawed when you use mere blips of posts on any forum to do it.
Degrees in Scripture and degrees in Theology are two totally different animals, Emile. So, what you see from a Ph.D. in theology will be very different from what you see from a scripture scholar. While one has a lot of philosophy behind it, the other is more or less a historical and linguistic endeavor. At least that's been my experience from having been taught by both.
And, look, I know it makes you want to vomit, but occasionally, it's fun to be just a tad playful. None of is really the type to descend on someone like a school of hungry sharks.
No. Evangelicals do not have degrees in Bible studies.Granted, they claim to; but I knew a guy once with a 'degree' in petroleum distribution he got in the army. I know it tickles them to claim a degree, but what does this mean? Really.
The attempt to intimidate another Hubber by announcing JM not only had a degree, but was also a lesbian. Egads. Or, better yet...wtf?
No Evangelical has ever gotten a degree in Bible Studies? And no one has ever gotten a degree while in the Army?
I wasn't trying to intimidate another hubber by providing that information.. Just giving said hubber pertinent info to consider when preparing a response.
Then, please. Explain why JM's sexual orientation is pertinent. Are you in the habit of starting a conversation with 'By the way. I'm heterosexual.' Because I don't know of any juncture where I needed to announce this.
And, if JM is a Bible scholar then I would assume this would be evident in the ensuing conversation. I read through the conversation where you three were so sure that no one had a chance against her. Really? Do you think that Hubber won't be intimidated? Ok, if she's read JM's usual argument..then, no. But, if not, then that Hubber might be hesitant to engage.
I have a usual argument? that's news to me.
In fairness to you I haven't read a post of yours in months. There was nothing original in them so I stopped. I'm sure you haven't read mine either. So, don't act offended.
wasn't intending to act offended, since I'm not offended at all. Aren't you jumping the gun a little bit with your assumptions?
Yeah... Took a simple comment and added a bunch of implications that weren't there and all of a sudden I'm trying to intimidate someone as if I'm a cyber bully
I didn't add any implications. But, hey. I apologize for the intrusion. You guys can return to your conversation about hunting for unwary victims. I threw up. I feel better now.
once again, the poster I commented on was making a comment using scripture to target lesbians. When JM responded I also responded by letting the poster that was targeting lesbians know that JM is a lesbian.Plain and simple. It's no different that If I saw someone posting something that would be targeting something close to you and you responded. I'd let that person know that this is close to home.
How did you gather that we believe nobody had a chance against her? Reaching a little, aren't you?
No, I don't think I'm reaching. But, as to targeting lesbians. Everyone knows Paul was a homophobe. He ranted on the subject on more than one occasion. I know a Methodist minister who assumes he was homosexual. He thinks Paul was wrong, but simply struggling against himself.
You can't argue that there was no discrimination within religion back then. To claim passages aren't openly discriminatory is fruitless. It seems to me it shouldn't be denied, Christians should simply recognize it as wrong and contrary to any teachings of the guy they claim to follow. Paul was no prophet. He was just a little man with a big ego. He got some things right and some things wrong. He was human.
Huh? I didn't say that Evangelicals have degrees in Bible Studies? I just said that theology and scripture scholarship are two very different things. And, what does getting a 'degree in the army' have to do with anything?
I'm sorry. You just confused me.
Claiming a degree means nothing. Claiming anything here means nothing. Especially if your argument doesn't support your claim. I thought someone said she was a Bible scholar. I'll have to read back through to find out what the claim was.
My point with the army comment was we call lots of pieces of paper degrees. Attempting to claim some type of authority because of one is ridiculous. What DM set the stage for was to imply that the Hubber who commented was at a disadvantage because of an unprovable claim. Appeal to authority, where no authority existed.
Okay. I see what you're saying. I was just saying that if you were to compare the posts of a Theology scholar to those of a Scripture scholar, they would appear very different, because the studies are very different. To backtrack a bit...I will say that this has been my experience in the Catholic Church. In chatting with my husband just now, he says that has not been his as an Evangelical, so in short...I may not know what the hell I'm talking about.
No harm done. Sorry if I caused any confusion.
In Evangelical circles, Apologists tend to be Theologians. Not always, but often the better known ones have a training in theology, usually a Masters and often a PhD.
However your point is valid because the two disciplines are not interchangeable. But in Evangelical circles a training in theology, especially systematic theology, is often considered a basic foundation for apologetic work, and a thorough knowledge of Scripture is an absolute must.
Well, you know, after I thought a bit more about it and discussed it with my husband, I realized something. In the Roman Catholic Church, as well as in Orthodox Christian churches and, in many cases, the Anglican Church, a theology degree does speak to something different than one in scriptural studies. While a thorough knowledge of scripture is required for both, a great deal of philosophy and theosophy is studied in theology as well. For us, a degree in scriptural study is more of (at the risk of repeating myself) a historical and linguistic endeavor. My husband and I agreed that in Evangelical circles, since, for the most part, the Bible is the sole authority, it makes perfect sense that theological study would involve a deeper study of scripture.
Does that make any sense?
Sorry, I implied nothing of the sort.. I was simply making an observation for the hubber. I didn't say anything about any disadvantage or anything of the sort. I didn't even mention anything about their claim being unprovable.. You missed with this one... Sorry
Look, I have to be a task master around here sometimes, Deepes.
I guess one of us has to be an adult sometime around here.. I guess it was your turn today LOL
Indeed. But I've fueled myself with a perfect pot of coffee today, so I'm totally on the ball...which usually means I'll be slightly playful throughout the day. Hmm. Probably means I should stay out of the forums.
Nah.. Just remember that whatever comment you make might be twisted...LOL
Whatever comment she makes is probably twisted already
yup and being who the rest of us are we will take the twisted comments and run with them..
OK OK OK.. I will
I was trying to be generous...LOL
Hey Mo... SHe said it, not me..
Excuse me? What basis are you using for the sweeping statement "Evangelicals do not have degrees in Bible studies?"
I dunno, we all go for some of the more outlandish posters
Yes she has claimed this and has proven it to me. As such I took her evidence for what it was..
The warning in question was in regard to a scripture post that seemed to be targeting lesbians. JM asked a question and i was just giving the person things to consider when preparing a response.
Good grief, everyone. No playing around. Get back to the subject and be serious.
That's all I have to say about that.
I am sorry I haven't gotten back to you. I waited because I wanted to think not only about what I was going to say but also about what you actually said. Unfortunately, when I went back to try to find the original comment I can't find it anymore, and some of the things I wanted to say I don't think I can phrase correctly without being able to refer back to it.
I'm sorry I offended you.
I hope you saw my comment to Rad Man, but that doesn't cover all the things I wanted to say. I'm still looking for it. I haven't stopped wanting to talk to you, I just didn't want to be glib about anything.
do you mean this one?
did you put those two things together accidentally or on purpose? There are a lot of sexual sins in Leviticus that you could have paired together, and I find it interesting (and a bit appalling) that you selected those two if it was anything more than coincidence.
Additionally, even if you can prove your case that the laws of bestiality and homosexuality applied to the jews in general, you would have another battle in applying them to gentiles and/or christians. How do you pick and choose which laws to follow? Did you refuse to touch your wife when she was on her period and burn every piece of clothing/furniture that she touched? That's in Leviticus too. I think that cherry-picking ancient literature becomes dangerous. You follow the lines that you agree with, disregard the ones that seem stupid and ignore the ones that you simply don't want to follow.
yes that would be the one.
Now I need to spend time reading and thinking about it again.
I will say one thing though, and I hope you already know this about me. In spite of the fact that I am a Calvinist, I'm not an "OT Christian." I try to find what Jesus had to say about any given thing or what is in the NT. I also don't quote "eye for an eye" when discussing punishment.
That, combined with other things I've written both to you and Rad Man will hopefully give you a little insight into what I think, but I don't pretend that I've addressed your issues en toto.
I didn't really think it through when I wrote that. I apologize for my thoughtlessness. Like I said, I don't want to be glib. I will say, and I assume you read this when I wrote it to Rad Man, that I don't subscribe to the "God hates gays" theory of who's going to hell. And like I wrote previously, many of the nicest people I've ever known are gay.
As early as the ninth grade I was aware that gay men all claimed that they had "always been that way." And I thought about that and believed it, even though I didn't understand why they were attracted to men and not women. I lived in a pretty conservative, small town in New Hampshire while attending my senior year in high school, and while taking my psychology class the subject came up. I was the only one in the classroom who didn't subscribe to the theory that they either chose it or were led into it, but when I brought it up the teacher quietly let me know that I shouldn't go there.
I know that there are people who claim that reparative therapy has "cured" them. This is a very small number, to be sure. I do not bring this up in order to rub your nose in it or say that I think if you just tried harder that you'd be straight. I don't claim to know anything about stuff like this. The only thing I do claim is that I believe that we are all created in God's image. I know that brings up a whole raft of other questions. And if you think I'm being a bit chicken by not dealing with them now, you're right. But on the other hand, I also don't want to just charge into something. I do want to converse, and understand, and think about things. I hear and read a lot of different stuff by a lot of different people and I try to think about it all.
Again, and I know I've said this before, I'm not an "OT Christian." There are NT verses about a lot of things.
So you phrase a question to Chris:
"Are you sure that's not just a rationalization to explain the lack of ethics in of the bible? It seems to me it would be more likely these ethical dilemmas are present because the books were written by mere men with no help from God thousands of years ago."
This is how you phrase it to me:
"You understand that's a rationalization right?"
One is respectful and asks his opinion... the one to me simply states that you're right and I'm wrong. You have humility and discussion with Chris, with me... your statement leaves no room for conversation at all.
*are you sure
*it seems to me...
*You realize... right?
Yes Beth, and I believe I explained and apologized to you so I rephrased the question for Chris. I honestly didn't think I was offending you, but if I had I'm sorry. It's sometimes difficult to express myself and remain conscious of others sensitivities. Check with Chris, every once in a while he gives me s*@t. Then we both move on.
I see you've done quite a bit of editing... so in response.
I don't know if those things are true or not. If they are, then I can only assume she made a terrible mistake. If God provided her with what she needed and she didn't use them, then my heart goes out to the ppl who didn't receive what they needed. *If that is true.
Like I said though, her life was spent as a sacrifice for others and for God. She once saved the lives of 37 children as they were caught in a battle between the Israeli's and Palestinian's. This tiny, old, frail nun, negotiated a cease fire. Why would you not focus on the good she did instead of any mistakes? We are all guilty of mistakes... would you want yours posted on the internet for the world to see after you die? Or would you hope to be forgiven?
I'm just saying that glorifying a person based on their acts of charity is not always what it seems. There are a lot of organizations and articles that have been published in reputable formats that decry the harm that she caused as well as the benefits that she provided to the people she "served". Look into it for yourself before putting her on a pedestal sarcastically to attempt to prove a point. If this is true, imagine what could have been accomplished and the number of lives that could have been saved if she used what she was given.
Furthermore, I go out and try to do my part. I feed the homeless on a regular basis. I contribute to secular charities. I try to help those around me who are in need - not because I was ordered to, or because I'm hoping for a heavenly reward. I do it because it's the right thing to do for other human beings who are suffering.
No, she knew exactly what she was doing, no mistakes.
Yes, well this is just another one of those scenarios you brought up but failed to do your homework.
So what? Many folks step in to negotiate cease fires, we don't hear you praising them.
Yes... this seems right. ATM tearing down Mother Teresa for her work. All has been revealed. This speaks of your character. There's nothing left to discuss.
Actually perhaps you need to see the documentaries about her work and involvement with corruption. I was raised as a Catholic and thought she was feeding the poor in India. What she was doing was facilitating a painful death as she thought pain brought people closer to God. There were some that a trip to the hospital would save a teenage life, but she wouldn't pay for the cab ride so she let the die. Did she die in the same place she helped so many die?
Yes, a narrow minded view of Mother Teresa is the preferred view. It speaks of HER character, not mine.
The Bible is nothing more than a good book of parables. Stories to condition mankind in understanding society of rhythm and structure, reducing chaos and crime. If you have not seen the documentary on religion, you should watch it. You will learn that every society has had a Bible like guide for it in every culture of folks. Since way before the beginning of our civilization, there were similar stories told that has been acted upon and embellished since the very beginning and even before that. If you understand evolution, you understand that for all of us to have come from a single cell individual, this would have destroyed mankind in that deformities alone would have prevented the procreation of all walks of life. For this reason, sisters and brothers do not get married and have babies. If they did, the baby would be outrageously deformed and more than likely not survive the gestation period or birthing process. It is a romantic story, many of the Bible stories are romantic in that to believe them as written would be much easier than to try to tell a story to all people and expect it be followed if it were just a guide. Rather we instill fear and regret for people if they do not follow it, they will perish. If you do follow it, there is after life.
I personally choose to believe in the higher power that is capable of making things for my life better. This higher power is in me, it is me and everything about it is me. I have the power to do all things, I own the rights to my life and try to be a good person, knowing that to be a bad one has consequences I wish not to be familiar with, I think you have the picture for me. The beauty about spirituality is that it starts in you and in me. The huge concern I have is when society has placed the Bible as a book that all must follow each and every scripture, then there is an issue within this belief. For what is good or right for you, may not be the case for me. This is when self convictions start to work and should help you determine what to do or how to behave based on your own self convictions.
Watch the movie/documentary from Bill Maher, Religulous- it helps to see the illogical aspect of the organized religion that we know of today in our century. Whether you are in agreement or not, it will help educate the uneducated regarding this type of world wide religion.
Good luck relying on yourself when you have cancer. Good luck relying on your own power when you get arrested for drunk driving... even though you only had two beers. Good luck relying on your own mind when you fall on the ice and receive a brain injury... or when someone you love dies and you sink into a deep depression and you can't get out of bed, let alone go to work.
Life comes with nothing but uncertainty... and these trials come for the believer and the unbeliever. But there is no hope if this is all you have... and if this *is all you have, you have nothing.
Beth hon, please understand that if YOU don't have God YOU have nothing. That's you. There are plenty of other people, myself included, that have no particular need for God to deal with trials.
Belief in his presence is nice and calming, I guess, but I handle things exactly the same way now as I did when I was not a Christian. When I pray, I pray for things like strength and patience.
If I was arrested for DUI, I'd call a lawyer. If I had cancer, I'd call a doctor. When someone I love dies and I slip into a deep depression, I call a shrink. (several actually)
I just never was the kind to pray for God to help me out of a tough situation. If he's in a prayer-answering mood, then I'd much rather he'd feed those kids praying for food than fix my DUI ticket.
I was always a "Trust in God, but tie your camel" kinda person anyway.
I would do the same things Melissa... call a doctor, call a lawyer etc.
Yes, God brings comfort, but that's not what I'm talking about. I'm talking about when your strength runs out and you have no one left to rely on. I've ministered to women in prison before... it's a dark place... ppl are screaming, moaning, crying. They don't see their kids anymore cause they wrote bad checks. I'm saying the world deals you blows that your lawyer can't protect you from. Your doctor can prescribe chemo, but then he'll ask you to pay the bill whether you live or die. There is something better. Someone who loves you and wants to be your help in time of need. He wants to have a relationship with you because He made you... you matter to Him. I didn't even mention the fact that He created you for eternal life. This life is not the end. Endurance is not your only hope.
There are still people who get through without God and without anyone else. They have the inner strength to pull through all on their own.
It's kinda silly to say that those people don't exist and it's kinda insulting to say they have "nothing"
I am, personally, quite proud of pulling through some of the trials in my life with nothing but my own intestinal fortitude. That made me better and it made me stronger. No God needed, and in some cases God would have actually been a hindrance.
Please understand, I know they exist... there are some ppl out there with amazing fortitude. I was just telling my husband today that I was always impressed with Paul Newman and JoAnn Woodward... They were a Hollywood couple, He was one of the most beautiful men that ever lived... and yet they kept their marriage together. They raised a family and founded the Hole in the Wall gang. And though this is all just from memory, I don't believe they ever found a use for God. It is not an insult at all to say that we need a savior. Do you understand my belief? For me to hear someone say they need no God, when I have no doubt that it was the blood He shed for their sin that could save their soul... it would make me heartless not to share the hope I have.
It's not an insult to you Beth, but it is insulting to people who do it all on their own. I understand your belief, I really really do. I, obviously, on some level have a reason that I NEED God as well. But, there are plenty of people who DON'T... and telling someone what they need is always insulting, especially if they are going about their business quite fine on their own. They obviously already have what they need.
By all means, share your hope, but realize that it's YOUR hope. If it's not anyone else's then you are wrong to assume that it will help them. It's like telling me that because you hope for a Jaguar that I should buy one.
If I knew a plane was going to crash and I begged you to wear a parachute, it would not be an insult for me to get on my knees and plead with you. I cannot make anyone believe... I can only tell them what I personally know to be true and if they deny it, Ive done my best. It is not comfortable, no. Dealing with ATM on a daily basis is not preferable. Being called a liar or foolish or insensitive is not the way I would choose to spend my day... but I will do all I can to offer you hope here on earth and hope for salvation. I have a love in my heart for all of you. Some of you are easy to love... but some I don't have as much in common with... and I know that God would have me love them on His behalf. I will try harder to let His spirit lead me, though I'm only human and I'm just back from a very low valley... I'll try to do better.
But you aren't telling people to wear a parachute Beth. Not really. You are actually kinda telling people who already have a parachute on to take it off and wear one you think is better. To them, the parachute that they are wearing has been proven to be effective. Taking it off to put on one you think will work just as well makes no sense at all.
I guess that is how you see it, I can't change that.
I wasn't questioning the accuracy of your beliefs hon, I was just telling you how others may see it. A different perspective helps sometimes.
Don't change Beth. You state what you believe to be the truth. As do we all. I may not agree with your perception, but I respect it. And you, for most part, appear to be respectful of other beliefs. Since no one can prove anything, respect is all we have to fall back on; when on the subject of cosmic reality
Thank you so much Emile. I was wasn't looking forward to opening this thread this morning... but your encouragement was definitely a pleasant surprise... thanks again.
Beth, Most of us here respect you. Your posts (whether I agree or not) add value to conversations as well as have added some perspective that I hadn't considered. I appreciate seeing you posting as well.
I second that, Beth. You are a genuinely kind and good-hearted person and we all see that and respect you for it. Remember, every now and then, we're all going to get ruffled feathers and maybe even feel as though people are sort of jumping on us. That's usually when I step away. Or try to. At least for a little while. Sometimes I don't make it before I say something ... less than diplomatic.
But every day brings a new opportunity to share and learn and to gain a new, perhaps even a better, perspective. Never be afraid to come back.
I sorta disagree with the last sentence, Melissa, but I agree with the overall message I think you are trying to convey. The parachute people are wearing may have been proven to be effective all the way up to that particular point, but this does not always mean that it will be effective the day that they actually need it. Sometimes, people can become complacent, comfortable and so secure in the knowledge that their parachute is working just fine that they stop checking it to make sure that it is still structurally sound. sometimes, it does help to have another set of eyes that care enough to kinda look out for you and check your parachute while checking their own (Now I admit that there are some that are so busy checking others that they forget or refuse to check their own). For instance, I know I have a tendency to go way out into left field with some of our sillier conversations, but in the moment I don't even always realize that I'm going too far.. That's why I rely on my friends like you, Mo, JM, Rad Man and others to reach out and pull me back.
I've digressed, but my overall point is that sometimes, when we are offering our own parachute or a better parachute to someone else it is out of love and the fact that we sometimes feel that we see something valuable that another might not.
Too early... no coffee
I wasn't really giving my view but trying for an empathetic view of what the attempt to convert is like to someone getting along quite fine on their own.
And essentially that's what we're talking about here... attempting to convert.
Well that makes Beth a saleswoman and the non-believer as a potential lead. It helps to know when you your lead already has something you're trying to sell. Telling a lead that they don't really have what you're trying to sell is a poor sales tactic. Jedi mind tactics rarely work.
Salesman: You need this car.
Lead: I've got a car.
Salesman: No you don't.
** Hands you coffee** Good morning Melissa.
I see what you mean, but not every sales pitch is an attempt to convert. Sometimes, what we see is a sales pitch is merely an information session.
Yes and no. Its not really an information session if the person you're "informing" already has the information and has made an informed decision against it for whatever reason.
Good morning, love!!.. And I totally agree with what you're saying. No If you have all of the info you need, then it definitely isn't an information session. At the same time, sometimes different messages have a different impact once it's all examined.
And that is sometimes true, but I don't think its very common. Do you like being told that you're lacking something, and that you really need something else?
To be honest, No I don't, but not because I always think I have it all together. I don't like being told that I'm lacking something because I strongly dislike the idea that I might have missed something. Because of this, I don't get indignant (much) when others tell me that I'm missing something because I always look for ways that possibly my life and quality of life can improve from what it is at this point. Because of this idea, I at least hear what someone has to say with as open of a mind as possible then make the decision as to whether or not I will apply it. But I at least consider most points of view, hence why I listen to you and some of the others.
JM, we are here every day, on a religious forum... discussing at length our perspective on spirituality and Atheism. I am no different from anyone else. Maybe it is me that you take issue with. People have different personalities and maybe mine is irritating to you. I can't hardly change my personality every time I meet a new person, somewhere along the way, I would disappear and become a hollow shell. I am simply stating my beliefs, just as everyone is. I try to be kind and respectful, but I am only human. I, like others, will feel the need to defend myself, joke, banter, get serious and have fun, but above all else, I will always do my best to speak openly and honestly. As I said, it's important to me to be authentic.
Beth, are you the only person I respond to? Do I single you out to the exclusion of anyone/everyone else? The answer is no, therefore how can I take issue with you personally? Have you not seen my interactions with Chris or bberean?
In fact, the post you responded to wasn't even directed at you. I'm reallyfailing to see why you're taking this so personally like a personal attack when in reality its anything but.
The less alert I am, the more blunt I tend to be. Keeping that in mind, is it okay if I address this in a bit when I might have a bit more aptitude for diplomacy?
No need to address it at all if you don't choose to. Even if you feel the need to address, when addressing me, I've sorta learned that not everyone has the same definition of diplomacy. Sometimes it's better to tell me if something I've said is the dumbest thing you've ever heard.. It doesn't hurt my feelings.. much..LOL
This is when the fights start. I don't mean between you and I, but between groups. I've got a parachute that I've checked and you assume yours is better and attempt to take mine off my back. If you need yours then stick with it, I won't take it away but will fight to keep mine.
True, but there is a difference between trying to take yours off your back (which will cause a fight) and simply offering a different one because there may be a flaw in it but backing off when it is refused. What you've stated is interesting because although some believers certainly try to force their parachute on non-believers, it appears that some non-believers here try to take the parachute of belief off the back of a believer when they tell us we need to get rid of the parachute of God and give us the parachute of reality. Same principle in reverse. From your perspective you may see yourselves (generally speaking) as offering a parachute that you see is better, but for some believers, you are trying to force their parachutes off their back by calling it rubbish, delusional, etc..
No, she's under the delusion that her parachute is something everyone needs because she needs it. It's childish thinking. Not being able to understand that others think differently then oneself.
So you don't think that everyone needs to live in "reality"?
No of course not. If an illusion gets one through life then so be it. It's the assumption that everyone needs the same illusion that is problematic.
But the question is, how do you know for sure which of you is living the illusion?
But Whose evidence? The evidence you see reaffirms the reality you live in and the evidence a believer sees reaffirms the reality they live in.. so you're still saying "mine" is better than yours because my evidence confirms my reality.
What evidence does a believer have? You know I've asked that and never gotten an answer other than personal thoughts. I've demonstrated that many believers are gullible when it comes to others stories that support their belief. I've been looking because I'd rather have an afterlife, but because I want one doesn't make it happen.
I can supply evidence all day as to the power of prayer or lack there of, the ability of the human mind to create illusions, to the lack of understanding of the universe in holy books, to the lack of basic morality in holy books, to the inability of believers to even agree on what God is, to the cruelty of this world.
My 16 year old at dinner last night was talking about his grade 11 world religions course he is just finishing (taught in a Catholic school) said the only religion that makes any sense is Buddhism because it doesn't punish, instead it rewards for good behaviour. We all know positive reenforcement works best, why do we bother with punishment. We don't even train our pets that way anymore. And yet here we have someone telling us to do as they do or fear hellfire. Sounds like something written a few thousand years ago that needs to be updated.
Come and talk to me when you have evidence.
I think that "evidence" is completely subjective to the individual. Each person is influenced by the evidence type that they prefer.
I'm cool with anecdotal evidence for the most part. My ex would have required 4 peer-reviewed publications complete with pie charts and 20 sets of statistics to buy toilet paper.
Of course my ex-husband is an anal retentive ass. Just sayin'
If something works for me, that's all the evidence I need and I really resent being told that I'm gullible because of it. I'm about the most cynical, jaded individual you could meet.
There are certain areas of life where anecdotal evidence is perfectly fine.
But, with that, I would have never tried to convince my ex to buy Charmin with the phrase "Because I think it's the best". If I didn't have the kind of evidence he required to fulfill his personal burden of proof, I wouldn't have tried to convince him. If he a peer-reviewed article that sandpaper was the best toilet paper, who am I to care what happens to his ass?
I said (many) not (all) are gullible.
Someone claiming they know God exists is only evidence of what they think. Someone claiming they know Big Foot exists is not in and of itself evidence that Big Foot exists, for that you'd need a live or dead Big Foot. If the power of prayer worked statistically it would be at least some evidence. If one religion was void of cancer or illness it would be at the very least some evidence.
Because what she says contradict logic. Why! she even contradict herself. She (every theists except pan theist) says that the glass is empty and full at the same time which is nonsense.
Not every theist says that. There are theists other than pantheists that have never uttered or implied that..
Every theist propose a creator which is contradicton. Is their any theist who do not propose a creator?
What does that have to do with saying the glass is empty and full at the same time?
I don't really.
I don't necessarily need to believe that he created the universe to believe he exists. My oldest kid found a group that believes that God and the universe were created at the same time... I need to find that paper so I can google it and post a link...
But I already have hope and understanding. You claim you KNOW something that which you THINK and this is why ATM is all over you yet gives respect and kindness to other believers. This is why you are told that what you say is a lie. We know you have no way of knowing. I'm glad you found something that get you through life because it appears something you need. But for those who don't need an afterlife and prefer reality, we don't see what you see which should be for you an indication that what you see may not be reality.
You are beginning to sound like a knock on my door. If you continue I'll start to sound more like ATM but without the patients.
thank you, Melissa. I hear the "if you don't have god, you have nothing and therefore everything is meaningless" all the time, and it really grates on me. I don't need a god for strength. Everyone has hardships, and some of us have learned that you take the good with the bad and look forward to what's next. If I need help, I ask real people that I trust, and they're usually more than willing to lend a helping hand. Other than that, I've learned to rely on myself and I take pride in my accomplishments and try to learn from my mistakes.
I don't have a god, but that doesn't in any way shape or form mean that I have nothing. This was posted on Gretta Christina's blog titled "9 questions to never ask atheists, and why they get upset if you do" and I found it particularly fitting.
2: “How do you have any meaning in your life?” Sometimes asked as, “Don’t you feel sad or hopeless?” Or even, “If you don’t believe in God or Heaven, why don’t you just kill yourself?”
The answer: Atheists find meaning and joy in the same things everyone does. We find it in the big things: family, friendship, work, nature, art, learning, love. We find it in the small things: cookies, World of Warcraft, playing with kittens. The only difference is that (a) believers add “making my god or gods happy and getting a good deal in the afterlife” to those lists (often putting them at the top), and (b) believers think meaning is given to them by their god or gods, while atheists create our own meaning, and are willing and indeed happy to accept that responsibility.
In fact, for many atheists, the fact that life is finite invests it with more meaning — not less. When we drop “pleasing a god we have no good reason to think exists” from our “meaning” list, we have that much more attention to give the rest of it. When we accept that life will really end, we become that much more motivated to make every moment of it matter.
Why you shouldn’t ask it: What was that we were just saying about “dehumanization”? Experiencing meaning and value in life is deeply ingrained in being human. When you treat atheists as if we were dead inside simply because we don’t believe in a supernatural creator or our own immortality… you’re treating us as if we weren’t fully human. Please don’t.
It's quite clear to everyone in my life that my purpose in life comes from a source other than God. My faith adds value to my life, but it is in no way the center of my life.
I once heard a preacher say that God should come before everything, even my children. I stood up and walked out. I never returned again. I discussed it with one of my more zealotous friends who agreed that God does, indeed, come before her children... because God was her maker.
I informed her that my parents were my makers as well, and if there were a fire I would literally step on my parents (who I love dearly) to get to my kids. If necessary, I would throw them out the window so my kids would have something soft to land on.
A digression, I know, but for some of the faithful there is literally nothing else to them but their faith. These people cannot possibly conceive of a person without faith having anything to live for. It comes from knowing that without their own religion, they would be essentially a lifeless husk.
These are the most dangerous of the zealots. They absolutely cannot question anything about their faith or form any opinions on their own. Their entire self-esteem is a house of cards. This makes them, essentially, narcissists by proxy. Basically unstable, dangerously defensive and most assuradly bat-shyte crazy.
This is what get YOU by, and that's okay, but don't assume everyone is the same.
Good points.. the more we operate in principles, the less we need miracles
I found that funny. If you get arrested for drinking while driving you need God? What? Where was he when I was getting behind the wheel?
Hey, Beth. Hope all is well with you and your family. I'm not sure exactly how you interpreted this post from the Compliance Doctor, but to me (And I could be wrong), but it appears that he or she is a believer. In reading his/her comment, I see principles that realistically can be held and good for believers if we take a good look at it. If I may (or if you choose to read it...lol) I would like to break it down based on how I read it (which simply is different, the way you read it could be 100% correct depending on how CD meant it). Let me break it down from the deepes mind (NOTE- THE FOLLOWING INTERPRETATIONS, BELIEFS, ETC ARE PURELY AND SIMPLY THOSE OF DM AND MAY OR MAY NOT REFLECT THE VIEWS AND OPINIONS OF ANYONE ELSE. I COULD BE WRONG AND DO NOT EXPECT ANYONE TO ACCEPT MY INTERPRETATIONS!!):
While I disagree with the statement that the Bible is nothing, I do agree that it is a book of parables and stories (NOTE- YES I SAID THAT IT IS A BOOK OF PARABLES AND STORIES THAT TELL A STORY AND HAVE A POINT, BUT THAT IS NOT STATING WHETHER THEY DID OR DID NOT HAPPEN AS WRITTEN). Look at some of the more well known stories:
Creation- Genesis 1 basically gives a basic illustration of how God created everything. The truth of the matter is that the writers don't know for sure how God created everything (And in present day, yes I know that we have no actual idea on how everything was created in general as we do not have proof either way)
Adam & Eve- simple story of the fall of man into sin.
Noah's flood- God's wiping the slate clean and starting over with the world.
Now looking at the parables that Christ gave, There are principles contained in each parable on how to live the best possible life you can for the good of society (Yes, my atheist friends, I am aware that these same principles can be found in other books)
This is unfortunately true. The parables in the NT are meant to be taught as a guide to living a good life because it is best for society. Unfortunately, There are some denominations of Christianity that rather than teach the parables and using them as a guide to teach proper ethics and morals of what is the best way to live and act for the good of others and society, they rather resort to the "turn or burn" method of telling people to be good (not necessarily always do good) or else they're going to Hell.
I am still quoting CD on this next question, but I'm numbering the different points to save me the time of breaking each one up:
1) This statement appears that he is spiritual and does believe in a higher power.. For you, me, and other Christians, this higher power is God, so everything after this I'm working off our beliefs.
2) The bible teaches that we fall under the guidance and covering of the holy spirit which was sent to us as another comforter after Christ's ascension. So The power is within us (if you believe in the holy spirit) or if not, see my next point
3) The Bible teaches that we are made in God's image. This (in my opinion) is not limited simply to physical appearance. We have the ability to do things for ourselves that a lot of people would rather wait on God to do yet wonder why it isn't getting done. In relation to your point wishing him luck if something bad happens, we have the power to get ourselves out of these situations by applying basic principles (lawyer, doctors, etc). The more we operate in principles (and common sense), the less we need miracles.
4) Philippians 4:13.
5) Free Will- enough said here
6) Basic everyday ethics. Be a good person and do good things for people and good things happen. Do bad things and bad things happen what we don't want to happen.
7) Society's interpretation of the bible does dictate that every scripture of the bible must be followed exactly as it is written (depending on how one chooses to interpret the scripture). But the truth of the matter is that even the most devout among us doesn't fallow every single word in the bible because a lot of those things changed with the life and death of Christ and are no longer supposed to be followed.
8) Speaks for itself. What works best for you (generally speaking) in relation to your life may not be best for anyone else. As such, we should not be trying to force our beliefs down anyone else's throat because not everyone is going to agree with us. We also cannot pass judgment on them for choosing to do what they feel is best for their life.
9) For those that believe, this is where the holy spirit that dwells within those who believe in the holy spirit comes in.
Once again, I'm not sure how you interpreted this comment and there are some things that I disagreed with in some of the wording that CD used, but hopefully there is something in how I look at it that may help.. If not, maybe this will still open up some interesting dialogue.
This is twice now you have felt the need to interpret a post for me. Interesting.
I don't feel the need to interpret anything for you. You interpret it how you choose. I was simply looking at it from a different set of eyes. We all have our own perspective on things and I was simply giving mine. I truly don't mean any harm by it, so if you feel that I am insulting you or being condescending toward you, then please by all means accept my sincerest apology.
I don't understand your point. Atheists go through adversity all the time and deal with it just as well as anyone else.
This is much more what I was expecting this morning. lol
I have nothing to sell. Were I to be selling something, I would receive payment.
I have nothing to benefit from anyone recognizing their need for Christ.
Im sure you will all rise up to tell me the twisted things I would gain, but I try at all times to be authentic.
If you do not want to have an open mind towards another point of view, as I said last night, I cannot force my perspective on you. You are free to consider it or reject it, period, but I will not shy away from telling others that what Christ offers cannot be found anywhere on earth, or even within ourselves. It is not an insult... not a commentary on the strong fiber others are made of, it is an acknowledgment of the goodness of God. I offer this perspective in love, do with it as you please.
So essentially "You need God whether you think you do or not and I will continue telling you how much whether you want to hear it or not because I love you"
Cool enough... However please realize that people are going to be offended and annoyed by it and you don't really have the right to complain about being told that.... since you seem to be aware of it already.
It's the reason I send JW's and Mormon's away from my door. Not necessarily because I disagree with them, but because if I wanted them to tell me Gods message I would ask. I feel bad for the treatment that they get from some people, but quite honestly they HAVE to know that their behavior is invasive and annoying, so they kinda are asking for whatever they get.
Beth, speaking solely for myself, I see the authenticity within you. I don't see anything wring with your opinion or your beliefs. They are YOURS and have no effect on me. My responses to you are never meant to be disagreeable with you for the sake of argument. If they are different it's a measure for me of giving a different perspective of something in an effort for the continuing exchange of ideas. We all have something we can learn from one another. I try to be respectful of everyone who is respectful of me, but I unfortunately do not know completely how each of you think. This is why I offered an apology to you (as i do anyone else) if anything I might say or might have said falls within the realm of insulting to you
I recognize YOUR need for Christ. Many of us don't NEED fairytales. You are projecting your need onto others and assuming we all need them to get through the day. That's insulting.
When you stand before God, you can tell Him how insulting my attempts to make you aware of His love for you were. I don't know what else to say Radman... I believe God is real, and that He loves you and that His presence in your life would benefit you greatly. I can only say it so many ways... it is up to you how you will receive that info.
That's better. You said believe. But your still preaching. I'm not sure how else I can explain your delusions to you as well. I've tried so many times and it doesn't get through. There is no evidence what's so ever to suggest we have an afterlife, it's just wishful thinking. A discussion can't take place when one is preaching. The door closes.
When you stand before God, you can tell Him how insulting my attempts to make you aware of His love for you were. I don't know what else to say Radman...
Since neither of us are going to stand in front any fictional character, let me tell you, its insulting to ask as to believe in stories that are utter nonsense and needs either a psychological need or lack of intelligence to believe.
I believe God is real, and that He loves you and that His presence in your life would benefit you greatly. I can only say it so many ways... it is up to you how you will receive that info.
You can believe any nonsense (should say BS) you want and according to you, you need it but we are not kids and we don't want your idiotic stories unless you tell it as fantasy.
Let me act like you,
Beth it will be better to get rid of these nonsense and live life responsibly, it will benefit you.
This is an illustration of your parachute point.. To you, you may not be trying to take Beth's parachute off of her, but it appears that you're stating that essentially, her parachute is inferior to yours which carries the implication that she needs to take it off and try yours.
I did no such thing. She is stating hers is better and telling me I need hers, I'm saying leave me alone, I'm fine. I'm glad she has what she needs, but so do I. Where did I say my parachute was superior?
You stated that her need was in a fairytale. you've basically stated leave you alone, your parachute is just fine, but her parachute is not real (to you), which in itself suggests a superiority in your parachute because yours is real (to you). we may simply have to agree to disagree on this one, but just because you you don't specifically say the words "my way is better" you still are implying the same thing by saying "your way is stupid"
I didn't say or suggest it was better. If one needs a fairytale to get them through life then so be it. It's the projection onto others that's the problem. If you see someone struggling you can tell them what you do to get through life, but projecting ones beliefs onto others who are doing just fine is the problem and childish. Assuming everyone struggles with the afterlife is childish and maturity together with education can help.
Beth (since you addressed me) or anyone else out there who wants to weight in,
This is my problem in a nutshell. We all know that you, specifically, don't accept any claim that comes around just because someone says its true. Yet at the same time, you seem to expect atheists to do what you are unwilling to do yourself - accept a claim that you say is true, just because you say it is. How much proof would it take for you to convert to Islam or Hinduism? Probably a lot, if you were even willing to consider the possibility at all. We are just like you, except we go one god further - yours. Whenever we ask for evidence, we get stories of a personal nature that cannot be tested, confirmed or verified. We get those stories from other religions as well. Without evidence, there's no reason for just to accept any of them, and if we did, we would be forced to accept ALL of them.
If you can provide an example of what would be enough to convince you that Allah or zeus was real, we may have a starting point for mutual understanding and conversation. Standing there and just insisting that we NEED to believe what you believe because its your opinion that its true isn't going to get you very far.
Again... we are on a religious forum. What would you like me to say from now on?
I could agree with everyone and drop all opinions of my own.
I could deny that God is real so that those who don't believe will find me more palatable.
I could make sure all my posts are watered down.
Ex: "It is my belief that God is real, and only my assumption based on my life experience that God (as least the entity that I refer to as God) loves all of mankind on a personal level. (If He is indeed real, which I realize that you do not acknowledge.) It is only my belief that rejecting salvation would be a mistake..." etc....
However, which of you, who oppose faith, uses this kind of phrasing with believers?
We all plainly speak our beliefs. You ask me to walk on eggshells when it comes to my belief, but I personally have been spoken to quite rudely many times concerning my faith (on a religious discussion board, where debate is invited.)
I believe you are greatly offended, but not because what I said was offensive.
It's not my wish to offend, but to share honestly what I believe, just as you do.
Notice how you feel you have the right to say anything and preach to anyone at anytime, but we have to be respectful and watch what we say or you feel your getting picked on. You can preach if you like, but I'll say what I like as well. Notice that other theists get plenty of respect, if you want that respect you've got to give it first. I've given you plenty up until know, and I'll continue to do so as long as you show respect back. If you're going to preach so will I.
I wasn't disrespectful to you at all Radman... and I think you have misunderstood my tone from the first moment I posted on this matter. All I have said is that I'm not sure how you would like to edit me differently... We are on a religious forum. I'm sorry that you're offended that I would sound preachy, but if I did, I can't really apologize for that. I would apologize for cussing at you, or saying something hateful or for being mean on purpose (or even on accident)... but for sounding preachy? I'm a Christian. I believe, without a doubt that God has called me to speak of His love, His forgiveness and the salvation He offers to all men. I can't apologize for talking about that... and especially not on a religious forum.
And what anybody is asking is that you to give evidence(substantiate) to what you say.
Your only argument is, believe as I say because I said it and I will not believe you because I don't say that.
"and especially not on a religious forum."
Religion and philosophy forum and not evangelist forum. This is a forum for discussion not conversion or evangelization.
This *is discussion. If you don't want to convert, that's not my business... how many times do I have to say, do as you please? If I do not have proof that moves you to reconsider, and you do not have proof that causes me to reconsider, then conversation over.
If a certain statement or post causes me to share that a life without God is missing something incredible... so be it. It doesn't change anything for you. That is my belief. I cannot take anything from you. I've done nothing to you. In my opinion, too much has been made out of this, but that's ok... it's all a part of debate. I'm not upset as some of you seem to think. I am however a little surprised by the response after all that's been said on these discussions, but freedom of speech is a good thing. Disagree with me, I'll be ok.
If a certain statement or post causes me to share that a life lived within a fantasy is missing something incredible... so be it.
I too will try, though RadMan and JMc tried before.
You can believe anyone you want. You can believe a modern priest or an ancient priest. You can believe Mahatma Gandhi or Saddam Hussein and nobody is going to question you. But this is a discussion forum and when you come here and state, for example, you believe Mahatma Gandhi, you will have to explain. It is like the question answer section at the end of a presentation (that is why it is called a forum: and you made your presentation- you believe Gandhi when he said…..). People can ask you why you believe, why you think him as correct and all. Other people might support you, but that does not mean that the questions are superfluous but your supporters are willing to answer for you. But it is not the number of people who support that decides the answer, but by rational discussion and by supporting and opposing evidences. So you will have to tell your reasons, won’t you?
Evidence (or your reason), you may say your personal experience. But how do we know that you are not making it up? How is your personal experience any better than mine? Unless you supply that which can be substantiated and rational, we will have to take your experience just based on your words. That will be just like taking your initial assertion as true. So the argument will just be “I said so”, but we are just as egotistical as you. We are not going to take it just because you or Obama or Jiang Xemien said so. If we are going to accept it, it should rest on the sound principles of reason and logic.
So all you are asked is instead of asserting, just because we do not think as you do our lives are meaningless, substantiate your position with reason and logic. Simply asserting that our lives are meaningless or we lack something incredible, is insulting to say the least .
At a lighter note; yes it is incredible and that's why we do not believe it.
Did you let ATM use your account? This sounds like something he would say.
I'm letting her know that if she continues to preach and not discuss I'll do the same, but don't complain that she is being attacked as is her way. Her stating that she knows what's best for us all is getting a little tiring so I attempted to let her know what it sounds like.
It was a joke (maybe a bad one). I got your point.
I gathered it was a joke, but others may not see it that way. Perhaps I should eat something, you know how I get when I'm hungry (Joe Pesci).
Here, have a Snickers. You get a little angry when you're hungry. Better?
Now, let's everyone move on.
It's gonna be a golden day.
Those commercials kill me.
OMG, Deepes, me too!
''Look for anything with an O!"
"Let's do this for Mother Russia!"
What are you super models?
When my blood sugar levels get low I know it because my wife brings me food.
We all have a point, Deepes. It's just about keeping from stabbing each other with the sharp ends of them.
True. The issue is that we don't always seek to stab each other, but we all sometimes like to run with scissors with out shoes tied together in a room of banana peels and oil...LOL
I've never seen a more accurate description of a forum discussion, Deepes!
Thanks.. I try
Don't ask where the metaphor came from.. It just made sense considering that when we do post things in forums We aren't always trying to offend anyone, but sometimes when we are posting, we are running with our scissors (our logic, rationalizations, and egos). When running, we sometimes slip on the banana peels (fallacies) and oil slicks (emotional over analysis). Next thing we know, someone is bleeding and clutching scissors embedded in their chest (where the heart is) and that's where things get messy because instead of understanding that it was a slip, we sometimes are focused on the pain. This causes us to take our scissors and stab back.
Ah, you misinterpret. I found the language amusing, but the idea was something that very seriously touched me.
Yeah, Riddle pointed that out for me.. Which I appreciate it.. My foot doesn't always taste good...LOL
That was what beth said and you just asked beth to uphold such views. Why the double standard?
Though 'half of you are intelligent' and 'half of you are idiots' means the same thing, the latter is insulting and beth is using the latter type. Instead of telling others that their life lack something she could say her life is meaningful and is the reason why Mo or Mellisa rarely get insults while she and her kin regularly get insults.
I didn't mean it as an insult. Rad wasn't attacking Beth and Beth wasn't attacking Rad. Rad just made a comment that I've seen ATM make in similar situation.
This works both ways. There are some non-believers that behave the same way.
Again, works both ways.
No argument here. Aren't they the cutest?
riddle, thank you for the compliment. I want to step out a little here, though, and put up a bit of a defense for Beth, and for everyone else who may tend to sound a bit ''preachy'' when they're talking about their faith, or lack thereof. Any of us who has been involved in HP forum discussions for any length of time can honestly say that it comes from both sides (well, in actuality, EVERY side) of every issue from time to time. In addressing just the religious forums, I believe that it's absolutely critical - not recommended, mind you, but critical - when discussing religion to keep in mind the known and unknown experiences of the person with whom you're discussing the topic.
I, personally, can handle almost any anti-religion argument that someone throws at me with little to no personal umbrage. I feel that every viewpoint is valid. If I believe that God created us in His image, which I do, I can't look at someone who's trying to be logical, rational, and reasonable in a discussion as wrong. My feathers get ruffled and I get ready to duke it out with anyone, though, who throws the whole ''religion is a crutch for the weak'' argument at me. First, I am not weak, and have been through many life events that have tested my strength at a level I could never have even imagined before going through them. Second, I don't turn to my faith because I'm weak. I turn to it because it shores up my innate strength - but it's only one of the things that does. Love and support from my family and friends do as well.
All that being said, what a lot of people do not understand when discussing religion with a certain type of theist is that we really do experience our faith as a personal relationship with a creator - a father if you will. Imagine that in the middle of a discussion about your family, someone told you that A) you are delusional because they really don't exist, or B) the same person who is arguing that your family doesn't exist then tells you that your family is made up of sadistic, cruel, egomaniacs, or C) that you're wrong to discuss the love you have for your family because other people don't want to hear about it.
Now, I'm not getting into the debate about God's existence here, nor am I prepared to have a discussion about the Bible. BUT, keep in mind that a person's experience of God is important in the interpretation of their words about Him. Beth is in love with God. She believes that His existence has, in fact, been proven to her - more than once and over and over. What may sound preachy to others might simply be her way of defending someone she loves very deeply. The trouble comes when others hear from her that their life is meaningless because they do not know, acknowledge, believe in, or love the one who gives her life its greatest meaning.
From person to person, what gives life meaning differs VASTLY. As Melissa has mentioned, for her it is her children. For Rad, it is his family. For Julie, it's her wife, and a constant quest for knowledge and truth. It's different for all of us. Evangelicals and fundies may get pissed off to hear me say this, because for them, it should be God alone. For me, it is God, but I look around at every person He's put into my life - my husband, my child, my other family, and my friends - and see HIM in them. So, for me to devote my life to, and see its purpose and meaning in, them is to love Him back the way He has loved me.
When Beth speaks of a lack of meaning without God, I don't believe that what's she's saying is that everyone's life is meaningless but hers. I hear that she can't imagine that others live without the greatest joy and the greatest meaning that she has ever known - God.
I'm not trying to speak for Beth, nor am I trying to speak for those who may disagree with her. I just think that all of us have a tendency toward myopia when it comes to these things - and there is an awful lot to be seen much farther off. Remember, for a lot of us theists, God is not a concept, or an idea, or a topic of debate - He is a person with whom we are involved in a deeply loving and deeply meaningful relationship. While it may seem like a fairy tale to many, it is a reality for us. We are not trying to force that relationship upon anyone else, we're simply trying to share why it makes us joyful and fills us with wonder.
Sorry to ramble, but I think sometimes it's important to see all sides of an issue when your back gets up about one in particular. Melissa tried to help Beth with that earlier, and I just want to try to help some of you who may not see it from Beth's POV.
You once again hit the nail on the head and I think it's similar to what I may have tried to say yesterday. It takes a certain level of maturity to understand that not everyone is as you. God is real for you and not for me. We both give our opinion and respect and understanding is hopefully given. But respect and understanding is not what we get when one side looks down upon the other and then demands respect back. It's the old I'm okay your okay, rather than I'm great and have a few vices and you should just wish you were me.
To an extent I agree Mo, but to hear ones life lack meaning repeatedly is irritating. Who can comment better about my life, than myself?
That's a true, true thing. But to hear that one is delusional, unintelligent, or refusing to live in a reality that cannot be clearly defined gets frustrating as well. Unfortunately, each attitude is a defense mechanism against the other. Rarely do we stop and listen to the other long enough to understand that what each is saying may have some merit. That's all I meant to say in that long and rambling missive.
I never said any one is delusional[But I am insistent on returning favours ]. All I ask anyone is to explain themselves without contradicting themselves. See I don't even ask them not to contradict me. Beth stated something with a contradiction, I asked her to clarify and all I got was my life is meaningless.