I have enjoyed many "debates" with folks here on the Hub, but in the long run, its seems those that believe still believe and those that don't still don't. Why is this?
Could it be, Christians, that we allow the nay-sayers to have their say while we are trying to not be offensive? The Bible is offensive to them. Let it be so. In many cases, we allow them to set the subject. Then we try to move them with a few nice words and a couple of verses. If we put a few drops of clean water in a mud pile, does it make the mud clean? Proverb 26:4-5.
Jesus set the tenor of his sermons. He also responded to those that confronted Him, but it a manner befitting. Remember when Nicodemus came to him "at night" with questions. And when Jesus would answer, old Nick would come back with a lame question or excuse. But Jesus would not go there. He brought him back to the substance and purpose of His walk on earth, "Ye must be born again."
Yet we, time and again, fall into this trap of defending God and the Bible, neither of which is in need of such. When the devil tempted Christ, the Lord answered with the scripture. Too many times we respond in the intellectual realm when we are dealing with the spiritual realm.
So, my brothers and sisters in Christ, lets use the Hub as they do, to assert our position as opposed to highlighting our inadequacies. Post your thoughts with a knowledge that you are a messenger to the world. You can bet you are going to get some noxious, hateful and immature responses. When you do, know that you are following the call, Matthew 5:44. And don't feel bad when you stumble around or fall back, like Peter was found so often doing. Get up and get back in it.
Be wise but harmless, Matthew 10:16 and ready to respond, 1 Peter 3:15. But don't get to heady. These folks on the other side of the Cross need to be answered, not assailed. And they are no different than we once were, 1 Corinthians 6:9-11.
Do not necessarily assume that if someone disagrees with you they are somehow anti Christ.
I do find offense in the fact that you call your view point clean water and those in disagreement the mud pile.
Perhaps, if you took the time to think about how your words were perceived you would choose them more wisely and not sound a tad hypocritical in the OP.
Beyond a direction to try make sure all have been exposed to the gospel message, are you aware of any scripture encouraging or directing believers to preach or reason at all to/with those who have rejected spirituality? I am aware of verses that I believe say the opposite and based on the fruitlessness of such ventures I have consistently seen wherever tried, I understand why that would be.
I suspect there were none in the audience on the mount who denied there was a god, (even if they did not yet know the true God), or any who denied spirituality. Even if not utilizing the Holy Spirit for spiritual discernment, at least knowing there is a god and seeking to know Him makes people open to hearing and learning from scripture. Is this not where our efforts belong? If so, even engaging in much of the dialogue with those whose only purpose is to oppose the message is simply wasting time that could be better utilized. Your thoughts?
Interesting that you dishonestly use the words "rejected spirituality," when you mean - "do not believe religionsists' claims."
This is why your religion causes so many conflicts.
Ha ha. Got me again. Pearls. I'll leave my post as is because of the humour and irony found within.
I appreciate your seeing that. As with spell check errors, (my phone comes up with some doozys and I don't always catch them right away),...when done in fun because of the irony it's nice you see the humor and don't take offense. You recognize when folks are mocking vs light-hearted humor.
I know that Rad has dyslexia, but that was just a dropped letter... something that happens to all of us, every day. I was hoping he wouldn't mind being included in a joke I would have made for any of us, myself included. His response made me laugh. It's nice to laugh with each other instead of the constant back and forth.
I don't believe there is a mean bone in Beth's body. I'm dyslexic and type quickly and usually don't see my errors right away. That one was down right funny. Someone in the past has described my spelling and grammar as lazy. I didn't really take offence to her ignorance.
It should be known that because I don't agree with any of you doesn't mean I don't respect you or are angry with you. It's just that I'm right and you're wrong.
Well put. I believe there are a couple that give us direction, Proverb 26 for instance. Verse 4, it would appear, says it is a mistake when we argue/debate with the unsaved about things that are natural to man and on their terms. But then verse 5 says we are to try to convince them with the Word as opposed to just walking away and appearing a loser or quitter. At least that is how I see it. Jude says we should convince with love but when that doesn't work, we should include the "fire." Ephesians 4 says God gave the church folks of different stations which I believe would include different gifts. And what he gave you may not be the same as the next person. We deal with various personalities so we have to have varied personalities to deliver the same message of salvation by various means. And Paul was quite explicit that how you bring the Gospel message is none of my business, as long as it gets preached, Philippians 1:13-18.
Hopefully, this addresses both of your last comments.
You make an absolutely valid point.
When I speak to those who are true Christians I get good feedback. When I speaks to hardened people of the world they recoil as though they have been presented a poisonous snake.
Our present society has so deafed and blinded people to the point they will not even look over the sinfful walls they have built around them.
I have found by trying to live what I have learned from the Bible quietly in front of them tends to soften that wall so we can begin to have a dialog.
I have a distant friend who uses a completely different tactic. He just starts out by almost bagering a person until they are so angry they walk away. I feelthis guy is trying to grab the person by the shirtfront and throw them through the gates of Heaven.
I think his way of approaching people contributes to those who will not in any way listen to your soft and truthfull words or to the gentle calling of the Holy Spirit.
All we can do is keep trying to work the fields and pray for God to reap the harvest.
Have a great and blessed day.
Who are you sir/ma'am? I am curious about your faith. Shameful... pigeonholing ppl, don't you think? lol... sorry.
I would respond that, by your words, you are not in line with that. By my interpretation of the passage when put into the context of the actions of Jesus. Going against the teachings of Christ by using the meanderings of Paul to justify behavior patterns doesn't qualify as following Christ. So, I think you can (hopefully) follow that to its logical conclusion
We are all hypocrites in some fashion. However, you make my point. One does not refer to the the writings of Paul or any other portion of scripture as "meanderings" and say "I believe." The Bible, in its entirety, is the Word of God. To pick and chose what one likes or approves of and throw out the rest, then why bother with any of it. So we go back to 1 Corinthians. It is impossible to understand spiritual things using worldly logic. You must be born again, accept Jesus Christ as you personal savior. Get your eyes off the things of the natural mankind for understanding. Yup, we are all hypocrites. Some hypocrites are saved and some are not.
What you don't seem to understand is that by insisting that the entire Bible is the word of God, thus allowing yourself to act in opposition to the example of Christ, is completely against the teachings of Christ. You can't have it both ways. If you are going to call yourself a Christian walk in his footsteps. Not Paul's.
And you won't. Because here you are. Seeking conflict under the guise that it is necessary for your religion. Because you seek to believe words tell you to do so. Because you seek to use those words to justify belief that a God wants it of you. Because you choose the example of the behavior of someone other than Christ to use as your model, thus sidelining everything he stood for and giving us a prime example of what he taught against.
Couple things. It is said Thomas Jefferson had the thinnest Bible of his day because if he didn't like what was on the page, he tore it out.
Second, the Bible, that is the whole Bible, 66 Books is the Word of God. Jesus Christ is the Lord. Therefore, all that is in it are His words. The writer is not the author. So your arguments seem to be with God. And I make no apologies for what His word says.
2 Corinthians 11:3-4; Galatians 1:6-12; 2 Timothy 3:1-7 are more words of Paul.
Matthew 4:4 and Luke 4:4 are the Words of Christ.
None are my words nor are they words that may be discarded by the Christian simply because they do not fit with their expectations.
Hey, you discard anything that implies you shouldn't do what you are doing here. Are you saying what's good for the goose isn't appropriate for the gander?
I am not trying to be difficult, however, again you have lost me. My position is one either accepts the whole Bible or none of it. There is no middle ground, as much as I am certain we would all like to find some at one time or another.
Just so long as you understand that is your position, not a fact, not a position held by most main stream Christians and not something you adher to unless it's convenient.
So you are saying that addressing specifics with specifics is improper. And if everybody else is doing whatever cuz it makes them feel better, that I am obligated to "do it" also. And that a Christian is a person that follows whatever doctrine is most pleasing. And that the foundation of what one believes is not really a foundation at all.
I'm not sure I have ever heard this position applied in any area of endeavor or thought, let alone in Christianity.
I don't believe we have an understanding, not even an "agree to disagree." Your position is most untenable.
Actually, I'm simply pointing out that this is your position. You don't follow the laws in the Bible, in its entirety. So,.your claim is going to be perceived as 'the entire Bible is the word of God, but some of those words don't matter. Just the ones I deem appropriate'. It's setting yourself up for some seriously raised eyebrows.
So one can't say they are Christian if they don't except every word of the entire bible as being divinely written? Jesus was said to have said that he didn't come to change any of the OT scripture, yet we don't use much of the laws of the OT and you take the word of someone that never physically even met Jesus over the works given to you that were supposedly of Jesus?
There may be an unintended nuance there, but its up to God to make the decisions, certainly not me. All I am supposed to do is tell people about Jesus Christ then turn it over to Him.
I believe the entire Word of God, OT and NT, has equal value and validity. An "apostle" dealt directly with Jesus Christ. He was given a mission(s), spread the Gospel. They did it in many ways, one being in writing. They were and are the messengers of God.
Okay, well you've told me about him, will you know leave it to God and leave me and others alone. Every single person with a radio or television has heard of Jesus. Your job is done according to your own words. Thanks.
What is the percentage of threads started by Atheists compared to those started by ppl of faith, do you think?
What I will do is not coming looking for you. I am here as long as the Lord pleases, if you have a need to talk, understanding that your commenting on a Christian site means you want to talk. I don't want to be adversarial just true to what I believe to the best of the ability that God gave me.
Yet there you are being adversarial all the time.
So you are starting to understand why your religion causes so many conflicts. Yet you always leap to attack anyone who points that out. Why?
Im like Lisa on the Simpsons... I'm gonna marry a carrot.
Lisa's a tree-hugger and these little mean girls were teasing her. It went something like this:
Girls: Lisa loves nature so much, she's probably going to marry a carrot! Are you going to marry a carrot, Lisa?
Lisa: (dripping with sarcasm) Yes, I'm going to marry a carrot!
Girls: (gasp!) She admitted it! She's going to marry a carrot! Lisa's going to marry a carrot.
Lisa: (rolls eyes)
I have to ask (with respect) do you really think what 1 Corinthians 2:12-16 says is factual and honest? Do you think your own thoughts are the thoughts of God?
Yes, I am sure the words are factual and honest. I find the truth of them on a daily basis. And "No" regarding my thoughts.
If I went with my thoughts and my personal reactions I would be the worst example of a Christian. I have to temper even the words I write here. But most times, if I take a moment, I restrain myself because of God. Notice I say most times. When I react improperly, folks don't see me directly, they see God. And if that is what God is all about, then who needs it. This person, me, was changed in many ways years ago, but I'm still working on it. I think differently but many times am at war with myself because old words and ways are enticing.
Spiritual discernment does not make me smarter, more intelligent. It just helps me to better understand the Word of God. It makes me realize what changes God has already made in me, but that there is more to do.
Paul describes himself as the chief of sinners. Must not this be the perspective of all believers, not because it would prove out in a head to head comparison, but because we don't have the dirt on anyone like we do on ourselves, so by shear volume we would stand out as the worst we know, in our own eyes?
Okay, let's make a deal then okay? You claim becoming a Christian helps you to become a better person, and I'll have to take your word for that. I say leaving Christianity has helped me become a better person, will you take my word for that and stop preaching to those who claim that are better without religion?
"But we have the mind of Christ." Do you have the mind of Christ, are your thoughts his?
The only real difference between a believer and an unbeliever is faith. Like Peter said, 1 Peter 4:18, I just barely got in the door, and that by the Grace of God.
We are all quite similar in word and action. Some are better actors than others. Some more intelligent. I don't claim any special gifts as a person.
The OP was, hopefully clear though regarding its purpose. All are welcome to join in on my OP's but expect to hear the Bible preached. If I go to your OP, I would expect to hear your position.
The scripture you pointed to says "But we have the mind of Christ." When I asked you if your thoughts are Gods thoughts you said no, why is that?
It's my opinion that there are many difference between those of faith and those without, and I can show you the differences with statistics.
Over the centuries, Christianity has been forced to mature; to evolve into what it was not. We see that in that Christianity as a whole no longer condones slavery, no longer condones murdering children for misbehavior, no longer convicts children for the sins of the father. There is a long list of things the faith used to accept as word of god but no longer do.
Islam still proselytizes with the sword, just as Christianity used to do (and still does in limited areas), but it is no longer mainstream and the practice will vanish in the future (by the sword if necessary). Christianity has grown beyond that, but will never be perfect ethically. No one will.
Secular (or other religions) views on such things as inter-racial marriage and gay rights are more modern examples of this, as are women's rights. One day believers will be forced to accept that their "sharing" should not be random public speeches and displays, but kept behind their own doors and by invitation only. The world will change and Christianity will either change with it or die out as radical Islam will.
Malachi 3:6 and Hebrews 13:8-9 tell me God has not and will not change His plan. But you are correct in that the world has changed, Romans 1:20-32 make it clear.
Unfortunately for such prattle He already has. Witness the murder of every living thing outside the ark because they didn't follow the plan. Unless you think that from the start He planned on sending all those innocent babies and people that never heard of Him to burn forever? Consider also the scattering after the tower, where he had to change His plan because men built something they shouldn't. Or even the change after Eve bit, unless He intended all along to kill all her progeny and bring death to man?
The "mind" of God has been a mystery to me in many areas. As to the retributions you named, they are not part of of the mystery. We reap as we sow. And "No" I do not believe the innocents are punished as suggested.
From your earlier post in this thread:
"My position is one either accepts the whole Bible or none of it."
Accept that your god murdered millions of innocents in just the flood and is directly responsible for His change of plans when Eve took the bite.
Inappropriate preaching is what is offensive, whether it is for the Bible, Justin Beiber or CocoPuffs.
It's the religious forum. Maybe we could dump the 5th amendment and you could give him a list of things that are permissible to talk about online... like they do in China and Iraq.
To believe; is to feel with your heart and not all people can feel in the same ways as others. There are road blocks people have put up for their own protection (so they believe) but weather others want to believe it or not, we are a product of something greater and this is why we feel, period! We where created in the likeness of our Creator; God. When one is so pumped, its only understandable to boast and brag. Better to brag about another than yourself and I choose to brag about God!
How self righteous of you. This would be why your religion causes so many conflicts.
that's all well and good to say. People can say anything. You can say that about God, Muslims can say similar things about Allah, Hindus can say it about Krishna, atheists can say it about the Flying Spaghetti monster. The point is, words are cheap, unless you can back those words up with actual, you know, evidence.
Or living a life of such obvious profound quality that people want to know how you did it,and come and ask you about it.
When the rude evangelists cone knocking on my door during my precious weekend, they are unwelcome.
Yes, actions do speak much louder than words.
It makes me think of this guy in my home town who would preach in the main street with a portable amp for long hours and often late at night. He would make his young kids line up and stand behind him as he went on for hours. I never listened much to what he said because any guy who would do that to his little kids is a jerk.
I have much….. much…… evidence! I remember God and the heavens and though there is much controversy and debate upon the topic of what we remember in life; I will bet my own life upon what I KNOW because I have nothing to lose here on earth but only the heavens to gain! This is my purpose to educate others about our majesty; God. Man has put up these divisions and different religions, not God! There is only one God; who is the God of all! I will be publishing a book soon to educate and inspire others on God. Greater is the man who has not seen and still believes!
So educate me. You know nothing about me, but show me your undeniable evidence.
To educate does not mean I am going to tell you about you!! You're the only one who knows you!! I am here to educate others on God!
LOL Doesn't seem to be forthcoming.
That's what usually happens, isn't it?
Christian: I have lots of evidence
Atheist: show me some
Had a lingering dread the other night that I was back in high school, but couldn't get to class because I couldn't find my locker and didn't remember the combination and the office wasn't helpful, then while still dreaming realized why I couldn't remember where my locker was or what the combination was. I haven't been there for more than 30 years, I was my age now. I don't remember many dreams but I remembered that one. So two or three days later my kid in high school tells me a story of how he had to rush to his locker to get his gym cloths and for a brief second was afraid he wouldn't remember his locker number.
The Lord was sending me a message through my dreams, I don't yet know what it was, but it's evidence that God exists. Did you see that coming?
Take a couple days break and I find the believers and non-believers enforce the words of Solomon, "There is nothing new under the sun."
My friends, the believers continue to fall into the trap of the unbelievers repetitive questions of which they know there is no answer.
The unbelievers still ask the same questions and still respond in the same way.
Words get twisted to fit a position. Words get ignored to justify a position. Why are things as they are in Syria? Read the Hubs. Different people, different location, same mind sets. (I'm sure this comparative will bring a rebuttal, which will also solve nothing.)
There is an occasional laugher such as the ones that qualify their position because they think that is the way things should be or they want it that way, or the ones that need an amanuensis to help with spelling (better check mine).
So I will just answer several of the comments before moving on ...
No, Yes, Maybe, Um, You can't prove that, I can't prove that, I don't want to hurt your feelings, I don't care you I hurt your feelings. Lord, what fools these mortals be!
I think that covers it.
Some just don't want to hear; no matter what evidence you set before them. "Knock and the door will be open to you; seek and you shall find" (Matt 7:7) Without diligence and a genuine heart felt desire to know; nothing will be learned or acknowledged. To argue with foolishness only puts me at the heart of it; and I will not do this. Seek answers through scripture. When there is a will there is a way. The only reason why you don't see is because you choose not to see. I will continue to pray for the lost as my heart goes out to all. My plea rested.
Or… we have looked at your version of God and found him to be either impotent or morally deficient and concluded that the God itself must not exist. There is something wrong when we have children under five dying by the millions a painful hopeless death and millions more thanking the lord for a football win.
Some simply can't see the evidence.
"The only reason why you don't see is because you choose not to see."
Or perhaps because some just can't seem to honestly accept the words of ancient. ignorant. barbarians, passed down through generations, that an entity from another universe, unseen and undetectable, actually created this one. We can all, of course, pay lip service to such a belief, but actual belief is another story.
You said you had evidence, and that you would show it to us. Now you say that there is no evidence that we will accept. A) isn't it a bit presumptuous of you to assume that without even trying and B) does that mean that you admit that your original statement is false? Or C) could it be that you actually don't have any evidence whatsoever, but want to blame us for your inability to produce it?
I have read the Bible multiple times in multiple languages. I don't buy it, and the Bible is not evidence - it is the claim. What's your point?
You seem a wise and lovely person, donnalynnfennell! May God bless you with ever greater wisdom and the beauty that comes from our Lord!
Beyond pain and hurt is hope. Without hope; how can one strive? This is the purpose in life: spiritual growth. There's hope in you; look deeper within yourself. Pain should not stop one in their tracks. It doesn't keep you from living your life day to day; does it? It shouldn't stop you from seeking God. There's more to life than what's in front of your face. Press on friend.
No, the purpose of this life is to leave the world around us a better place. To leave fond memories in those that knew us when we die. To enjoy life as we accomplish these things.
Not to create an imaginary place we call "spiritual" and pretend that it is important to us.
If you believe the purpose of life is "to leave the world around us a better place. To leave fond memories in those that knew us when we die. To enjoy life as we accomplish these things.", is this merely an opinion in your opinion? Or do you consider it a fact or definitively correct? What has led you to this conclusion? What if there were no God and all life was going to end shortly due to a catastrophic event; why would these "purposes" be meaningful? Would they even be the purposes of life in such a situation?
LMAO. You invented a meaning to life that renders this existence meaningless which makes life meaningless to you and life here and now empty. Nice job. You could learn something from living in the here and now.
I consider this existence very meaningful! To live is Christ... While going to be with the Lord is most advantageous to us, living here on earth means fruitful labor.
And I am very grateful to God for the here and now, for every day of my life, whether good days or hard days. I don't take my life or the lives of my loved ones for granted. There is so much here to be grateful for... from a beautiful little flower in the forest to the amazing blessing of a child.
Though being with the Lord will be better by far, there are some things created only for the current earth that should be appreciated and enjoyed while here. Enjoy! But look beyond as well!
Yet that's not what you wrote. You wrote inaccurately that I "invented a meaning to life that renders this existence meaningless which makes life meaningless to (me) and life here and now empty." If you figured as much, and you understood how meaningful I consider life even here, why would you write something different?
Again, if you feel the meaning of this life is to get you into heaven in the after life then you've rendered the meaning of this life meaningless to this life.
Getting into heaven is of the utmost importance for us personally. Yet the purposes extend much further, and in the truest sense the meaning isn't about us but about the Lord. We do see the importance of eternal life over the significance of spiritual gifts and abilities when Jesus said, "do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven." (Luke 10:20)
But beyond this eternal life, there are many purposes to our lives on earth. "For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." (Ephesians 2:10)
And let's not forget to enjoy and give thanks for all things we receive in this life! "This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it." (Psalm 118:24) Jesus said, "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly." (John 10:10) Yes, the Christian can be the most deeply joyful of all people (even in sorrows) as they embrace the here and now and the joys of both this life on earth and eternal life!
It is as much opinion, or fact, as the statement that the purpose of life is to grow spiritually.
And much more factual than the unstated but implied opinion that growing spiritually means accepting the specific god of Christianity as truth.
I wasn't comparing it to other stated purposes of life. Rather, I was wondering what you are basing your opinions about the purposes of life on. And do these alleged purposes hold if all life will end shortly?
But I WAS comparing it to other stated purposes, at least in the validity of the statement.
Nevertheless, it is a true statement...for me. We all, after all, concoct our own "purpose" for life. No one else can do it for us - any such purpose is as personal as the nose on our face is.
And no, it doesn't matter if the world ends tomorrow, any more than it does if there is no god. It is the journey, short or long, that matters; not the end point.
Thanks for explaining. I do find it peculiar that making the world a better place and others' memories of us are still considered meaningful purposes if the world potentially ends tomorrow. Then we're left only with current enjoyment. And enjoyment alone, while a positive, isn't very meaningful in a lasting way.
If the only meaning to life were the meaning we ourselves defined and attributed to it, that would be dismaying to me. Is it dismaying to you, or are you satisfied with that?
Well, it is dismaying to me that some people attribute a meaning attributed to a mythological, non-existent creature from another universe as more important than their own actions. We're even there.
But when it comes down to it, there is no difference. You've made up your own meaning; to obey the commands from barbarians millenia ago - I've made up mine according to what I find important (the legacy I leave behind). The only real variation is that I find the journey until the world ends (and it will when I die) important; you find the moment of death important, with the assumption that all your mistakes and errors are automatically forgiven. You don't want responsibility for your bad actions to count while I recognize they are a part of what I am.
Let's say you were right. Then we've both defined the meaning of life for ourselves.
Let's say Christians are right. Then they've accepted the meaning of life given by the Lord of the universe, and only those who refuse this are attempting in vain to attribute their own meanings to life.
So whether you or the Christians are right, there's zero chance you've done anything but attribute your own meaning to life. This would be dismaying to me, but maybe it's not to you.
I find this journey of life VERY important, though eternal life is FAR MORE important. A believer and an unbeliever can both find life on earth important, though for the unbeliever all is lost at the moment of death.
You express no desire to be free from your mistakes and errors, and even seem comfortable enough with them, as if you are grossly minimizing them and their effects. Why wallow in filth? Why not rather be cleansed and made new and move forward blemish free? How much greater things there are! There was a GREAT price that was paid for ALL our mistakes and errors - the precious blood of our loving Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! For this those who have been cleansed and made new are eternally grateful.
As enlightening as you try to make your comments sound, its easy to get depressed that there are people with this kind of mindset.
You place more importance in an afterlife no one can confirm since they are already dead than you do with the life you are currently living.
If you can do me the favor...do not quote from the bible. The simple fact that there are more religions than just christianity puts into question its credibility, let alone the contradictions it contains. For you to quote it in response to this comment means absolutely nothing on my end.
Hello, Link. The importance we place on life here on earth could still be equal, even if I place greater importance on eternal life than earthly life. Life is a precious thing, and to understand the greater importance of eternal life does not imply that our earthly lives are not considered of great importance.
At first I thought you were asking me not to give Scriptures at all, but then I saw you meant in my reply to you. I can certainly honor your specific request in this reply to you, though Scripture still guides what I think and say.
First, "what ifs" are only useful in intellectual games, and what I will leave behind me is no game. It is real (unlike the imaginary entity you assume will wipe your ledger clean) and very important to me.
Yes, I have attributed my own meaning to life, just as you have. No difference, even though you are willing to claim knowledge that yours comes from another universe.
All is ended for the believer, too. Whether you think you will live for an eternity (a fate far worse than death) or not has no bearing on whether it will happen. It won't, in spite of your claims to the contrary, so why pretend a meaning from afar? It isn't there.
I accept my mistakes because I take full responsibility for them. No one is going to wipe them away as if they were never made, and this makes me (seems to me) far more careful to live the life I wish it to be than someone that knows their mistakes will not matter. As far as "being cleansed" from the results of my decisions and actions, well, it isn't going to happen for any of us. Nothing to be gained by pretending it is, except perhaps to free one from worry that what they do is good or evil.
Are you beginning to see the problem in this kind of discussion? You will continue to claim absolute knowledge you absolutely do not have, and I will continue to call you on it. You will continue to state a god paid the price of your ill conceived actions; I will continue to deny any truth in the statement. Until you understand that belief does not equate with knowledge you will never truly understand the stance that those that do understand that are going to take.
Living eternally is only "a fate far worse than death" if life continued "as is" eternally (or became more difficult than on earth and continued for eternity). But eternal life with the Lord is a different matter altogether, and is beyond what you or I could imagine in its glory and magnificence.
Through the power of the Holy Spirit we can live lives here on earth that overcome our fleshly sinful nature. The leading of a pure life is of the utmost importance to those who have been in the presence of the Father and desire more of the Lord (for sin separates us from God). In addition, love is the natural outcome of the Holy Spirit within us. Anyone who intentionally sins because he/she thinks it will be forgiven anyway and so it doesn't matter, shows him/herself to at the very least lack understanding and spiritual maturity, and they show that they are not walking with the Lord, who is light. It should be the aim of Christians more than anyone else to put to death the sinful nature as they live instead according to the Spirit.
I'm sorry, but you have exactly zero idea what life would be under your god. Only the word of people 2,000 years dead, and that is not enough to know anything.
Not all of us need your "Holy Spirit" to live a good life. The only possible reason to invent such a thing is for that automatic forgiveness; the forgiveness that only exists in a mind intent on doing wrong.
You have not been in the presence of a creature that does not exist. We've been over this in that you will continue to make such claims; claims that can only be considered false as you steadfastly refuse to provide proof (or even evidence) of it.
Likewise you don't know what the outcome of a life within an imaginary spirit is; we've already been over this.
Yes, it should be the aim of Christians to live a good life, but unfortunately it is not. The continual fight to repress and persecute any who do not believe is perfect evidence of that (and claiming they are not "true Christians" shows nothing except that the one making such a claim has set themselves up as judge).
Wilderness, we know only as much as is revealed to us.
The job of the Holy Spirit is to convict us of sin, lead us into all truth, empower us, seal us in the Lord, and so on. Forgiveness comes from the Father through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.
I have been in the presence of the Lord. Providing proof to another has nothing to do with what has or hasn't occurred. I have a dog and a cat, and the fact that I've provided you no proof of this (and really couldn't without revealing my identity) doesn't change the truth of it at all.
It is the aim of Christians to lead a "good life", and most certainly that is the aim of those who are walking closely with the Lord. I spoke of what it looks like to be walking with our Lord. I am not here attempting to imply anything about the authenticity of any Christian's claims (though we do know that all who claim to be Christians are not). My comments did not relate to salvation. You see, a person may be an "infant" Christian, still immature, stumbling and/or for a season not walking with the Lord.
Then you know nothing, as nothing has "been revealed" to you (unless you want to count that your god is probably just a myth).
You have no clue to what the job of the mythical Holy Spirit is, even if it does exist. Forgiveness comes from the one harmed, not a mythical creature made up to fleece the marks of their coppers.
No you haven't, you just claim that you have. You want people to believe impossible claims you have to provide proof, and if you don't want them to believe there is nor reason to say such things.
No you didn't; you spoke of what you've decided it looks like to be good. That may or may not have been what the ancients decided was right, and probably isn't as we as a people have developed morally considerably since the time of the barbarians.
See how that works again? You make unsubstantiated statements that are known to be false, and I call you on them. And you then make the same statements again and get called again. You don't learn what it means to speak honest, verifiable truth and I don't know what it means to believe in myths without supporting evidence. We live in different worlds, you and I, and you just don't get what it means to use reason and honesty when making statements.
Truth exists independent of proof or evidence offered. For any number of truths, you may or may not be given evidence, yet none of these truths are ever affected by the evidence offered or the lack thereof.
"The righteous will live by faith". This is God's design. We either come to him in faith or we don't. I understand that some personalities (i.e., "sensing" types) have a harder time letting go of their own demands for PHYSICAL evidence BEFORE seeking the Lord. God your Creator knows this. But "God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in the Spirit and in truth." (John 4:24).
Nonetheless, natural humans have been given plenty of natural, physical evidence of the Lord: all of creation exists as a powerful testimony of the Creator. Yes, in these last days attempts are being made to silence the testimony of creation by claiming it is all possible without a Creator (given enough time), YET at best these beloved theories would describe a PROCESS and even INFINITY could NOT bring about the majesty and brilliance that the all-powerful and all-knowing Creator has brought about.
Rad Man speaks often of studies that show use of intuition gave the wrong answer to participants. These studies show what they were designed to show: There exist things for which we should NOT use our intuition (even things that are counter-intuitive). Despite there being "sensing" and "intuiting" types, ALL people have been designed so that they can make use of both their sensing and intuiting abilities. We must know when to use each. It is true that in many matters, we are better off using our sensing abilities. But it is also true that in other matters we are better off using our intuiting abilities. So just as Rad Man may warn: use your "logic and reason" ("sensing") when appropriate; likewise I exhort you: make use of what has been labeled as your "intuiting" abilities just for a starting point. The spiritual cannot be attained by the natural. You must look with spiritual eyes and listen with spiritual ears. If you desire to meet the Lord who exists in the spiritual realm, you must cross over from the natural into the spiritual.
Jesus Christ came in a natural human body at the appropriate time. He now has a new spiritual body. The time is coming when the old order will be replaced by a new one. When Jesus Christ returns, all flesh will see his glory. But until that time, do not think that you can go to God Almighty, Creator of the Universe who is "Spirit", with your demand that he "prove" himself to you in the natural realm to satisfy your reliance on the physical world. Make use of the other abilities God has given - your intuiting abilities - to go to him in faith. And as your faith increases, the spiritual WILL cross over into the natural and you will begin to see amazing things for which there is no natural explanation! Mountain movers may be few, yet it only takes A LITTLE faith.
You are absolutely correct; truth exists independently of man's ideas of what is correct and true. But that has nothing to do with trying to convince others of that truth; that requires either evidence or a willingness to accept the bald claims of the speaker.
Faith, in other words. Don't you find it convenient that God requires us to accept Him without evidence? Could it be that it is because it isn't there? That it is all a lie, and if examined too closely the truth becomes evident; a truth not borne out by the words of the priests and prophets wanting us to believe them without proof?
The reasoning person does not simply accept claims as fact, any more than you accept mine. Faith, belief and a desire that something be true is insufficient reason to accept as truth that which contradicts what we KNOW to be true. That you wish to live forever just is not a reason to decide you will, in other words.
I'm glad we agree that "truth exists independently of man's ideas of what is correct and true".
THEORETICALLY it could all be a lie and the need for faith a cover-up, and I would certainly agree with your line of reasoning IF I hadn't already met the Lord and didn't already know him intimately and didn't experience his manifest presence and hadn't already been sealed by the Holy Spirit... As it is, I cannot deny the One I already know. The flaw is not with your logic, for it is very sound, yet human logic comes short of the truth. For the truth isn't based on what seems right or logical to humans. It is God's truth, in a realm above ours, and attained only by those willing to step out in faith when they hear the call of the good Shepherd. It isn't my words I hope you will take. It is that call I hope you will heed, and when you do, EVERYTHING will change!
May God, who is faithful even when we are not, be faithful to all his promises, and fulfill what has been promised! Blessings and love to you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, Wilderness!
Thanks for reminding me why I rejected your religion many years ago. Much as i think it is wonderful that you think you have something we do not - I find that extremely off putting, and I don't believe you know something special.
Thanks once again - don't you get extra time in purgatory for pushing people away like this?
The time is near… repent… the time is near… repent.
And here we are 2000 years later. Even Paul and Jesus said that time would happen in there generation. You are just using scare tactics.
BTW, intuition will not give you the right answers for questions of which you have no experience with. None of us have any experience with any Gods especially not someone who does't believe any Gods exist. Our intuition will tell us if rain is coming because we have experience with rain, but a child who have never seen rain will not no it's coming.
Please don't project onto me a desire to use "scare tactics". Your own desire to induce fear as a form of "punishment" was made evident in a previous post in this forum. When I was saying that you'd never have the satisfaction of me learning anything after death if you were in fact correct about there being no God, then you attempted to convince me that I likely had chosen the "wrong" God and the true God would be angry with me. You didn't believe this to be true, but it seems you thought I might consider it a possibility (given my belief in God) and suffer for it. I don't consider it a possibility, but your ill-will came across loud and clear. I understand why I'm not your favorite person, but perhaps you could take a more compassionate approach even toward those you don't care for?
This brings something up. I've noticed you being very "nice" to one of my sisters, who you previously persecuted heavily. When I'd encouraged her in the past regarding one of her forums you were speaking against, she'd commented that you consistently treat her like that. I'd noticed your verbal persecution of her as well. Being wise, she noted when you gave your "favor" to others. For example, after Jane revealed that she is not a Christian, you stated to Jane that you were growing more fond of her. My sister called you on it, and said something like this: "She's still the same Jane, but now that you know she's not a Christian, you like her." Your sudden "favor" bestowed on my sister who you previously persecuted wouldn't have anything to do with a recent "shout out" my sister gave four or five Christians recently, would it? If she reads this, I hope she will be cautious about the friendliness you are suddenly displaying toward her, and that she'll recognize possible motives. We always maintain hope that we'll be a light for someone in darkness, but we must also be cautious of those still in the darkness. You know she is strong in faith, but I know it is more than a strong faith - she is sealed by the Holy Spirit. She may have become upset for a time, but she won't persecute Christians with you, Rad Man.
Please stop twisting the words of Jesus and Paul. The generation that sees all the end-time signs will NOT pass away until all has been accomplished!
Persecuted huh? Not seeing any of that myself. I thought bearing false witness was a sin? Guess that one doesn't apply to you either.
Who are you talking about? Are you jealous? Sounds like it to me.
What appears to be happening here is you can dish it out but can't take it.
I wish no one any ill-will.
I find it interesting that you feel persecuted while you say things like "We always maintain hope that we'll be a light for someone in darkness, but we must also be cautious of those still in the darkness."
"The generation that sees all the end-time signs will NOT pass away until all has been accomplished!"
Talk about the twisting of words. I guess this time you decided not to use the actual scripture?
I'm not clear on what "dishing out" you're referring to, Rad Man. You've projected onto me that I attempt to use "scare tactics", which I don't. I've never been one to speak much on hell, for example, and when I have it's to say I HOPE it's an eternal death rather than an eternal suffering. But you were attempting to instill fear in me when you said something you personally didn't even believe: that I'd likely have chosen the wrong God, and the true God would be angry with me for my actions, as I'd probably have done more harm than you. It was hateful, and was not at all what I do to you or anyone else - which is to speak what I truly believe/know in the hopes of some coming to the Lord and gaining eternal life.
It takes a VERY large ego to form the opinion that I (or anyone) would be jealous of favor you bestow. I've seen you do it before when someone acts in line with what you approve - either saying they are not a Christian, or speaking ill of God or speaking ill of Christianity or Christians - you begin to say positive things to/about that person. So I was wondering if your sudden change from persecution to approval of this Christian related to a recent shout-out of other Christians she gave. And I also wanted you to know that she won't join you, so if you're sensing you might have some sway over her, I'm telling you that you won't because she is sealed by the Holy Spirit.
The Lord may certainly soften your heart, Rad Man, but right now it's hardened. We are wise to proceed with caution around those who with hardened heart speak out brashly against God, against the Christian faith and against Christians. You are often more personable, engaging and interested in deeper discussions of religion as compared to many "God-haters" in the forums, which I think tends to give people a false sense of hope for/about you. But you hate God (even if you want to call it the "idea" of the "Christian God", and say you can't hate what doesn't exist) more than the least engaging of them and you seek to destroy the faith of Christians at every point. The human temptation is to think we'll "win over" an atheist, and often we become quite friendly with the world in this pursuit, but our job is simply to bring the good news in love and humility to those who will receive it. No one can receive it with a hardened heart. So until God softens your heart...
Here is the Scripture: "So you also, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near. Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all things take place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away." (Luke 21:31-33)
Scripture indicates this is highly unlikely. I too get duped, but then am reminded. There are much more fruitful evangelistic pursuits. Trying to win over the atheist is akin to Satan tying up a believers time, for the most part, and it only serves to frustrate.
On the other hand, I happen to like many of the atheists here so I participate on occasion for social reasons. That is not frustrating because I am going into it with no illusion they will be swayed any more than I will be by their beliefs.
Yes! I think most of us with a heart for evangelism have been duped in this way many times. It's a topic very relevant in this forum and one I think a lot have been thinking about.
There are some positive interactions between believers and unbelievers in the forums, but sadly it looks like much is negative - from manipulation and twisting of words, to taunting and mocking, to stabs at God, the Word, Christianity and Christians, and so on.
Please stop persecuting non believers. I know the commandments do not apply to you, but - once again - thank you for reminding us.
Cat, are you seeing, by reading the responses and darts directed at Christianity, that most of the folks on the other side of the Cross are there by choice, independent of John 3:18. And that is a shame to the Church. It seems, for the most part, they had a belief in God at one time or another, but they have allowed organized religion to sap their interest and integrity. They allowed men to win and ego is now eating at them for this. Yet they see no avenue back to God where the can keep their individually, the ability to pick and chose what they want to believe. So, in response, they now are getting even with comments directed toward anyone that has a belief other than theirs. Seems they have all read the Bible, but it makes no sense to them. That's scriptural, Matthew 13:11. Their comments convict them of this. Yet, they still are interested in God else they wouldn't take the time to troll the Christian hubs. I see their continue diatribes as pleas for help such as Acts 2:37, but they can't quite make the break to Acts 2:38. And, too, remember we are not that much different than they, 1 Peter 4:18, except we are saved by the Grace of God, and they cannot understand that, therefore it is an abomination to them, something to be ridiculed.
Too bad this entire post is a blatant, arrogant, self righteous lie. You know nothing about what's in my mind or heart, you don't get to put words in my mouth and for someone so offended that I called you out on a fallacy that you insisted it was a personal add hominem attack and would not continue the contain on another thread, you seen to have no problem saying personal things about atheists that you assume but cannot possibly know (unless you're omnipotent) but never bothered to ask. Does that double standard ever bother you?
Right. Everyone is arrogant and self-righteous, except for you, of course. You're right and everyone else is wrong. You attack and insult and can't see that you are the worst hypocrite of all.
Where was the attack and insult? Can you quote the specific line(s)?
Link, it's the tone of her message and her attitude. She called him a bladent and arrogant liar.
Did you read past the first sentence of that comment Lybrah? Because it was directly after that JM gave the reasoning as to why that was said.
If you did, i would like to ask you a question. Would you not think me an arrogant liar if i sat there and told you that your belief in god was based on problems you had with your father growing up, directly after you telling me the true reason for your belief? I have absolutely no knowledge of your relationship with your dad, but would it not be arrogant of me to assert that?
Now take a look at the comment JM was replying to and tell me you cannot see the parallel.
Link, it's hard for me to articulate what I want to articulate without getting banned from the forums. All I can say is that throughout the course of the day, I've been basically analyzed and judged by someone who thinks she is totally above everyone else, knows everything because she studied the bible, is so self-righteous and arrogant, yet throws insults at people and is the pot calling the kettle black. This infuriates me. I never wanted to even talk to her in the first place, but she jumped in because it is her place to criticize others. But she must be right.
"God sent His son to DIE FOR YOUR SINS...and He is coming back soon...enjoy the tribulation.
Austinstar, you're the silly one. Logic? Please!!!
Overall, this hub sounds like a rip off of someone else's..."
Did JM's judging and analysing happen before or after your comment there Lybrah? You seem to have a habit of misrepresenting things and ignoring your own role in Them in order to play the victim.
The reason I bring up my education is not out of pride, self righteousness or judgement. It's because I'm sick of people assuming that I've never read the Bible, I don't understand it or I'm ignorant of Christian history or theology. It's simply a lose lose situation. No matter what we do, blatantly incorrect and condescending assumptions are made. Correcting these incorrect assumptions are seen as hatred, arrogance or persecution. Trying to tie atheists into these little preconceived boxes is absurd. Christians certainly don't like it when it's done to them.
That's the funny thing. Tone does not come across in the Internet. We as human beings infer tone, often incorrectly, based on our personality, frame of mind and preconceived ideals. She cannot possibly know what tone or attitude was intended, sees nothing wrong with telling atheists what they think, feel or know but is offended, enraged and angry when we actually defend ourselves. I don't understand that mentality. I'm more than willing to admit when I'm wrong and apologize, and I've done it in the forums multiple times. The inability to take personal responsibility for someone's own words and across is completely foreign to me as an adult.
Have you seen what she has called me the last few hours?
Except I said the post, not the person themselves who said it. Do you really not see a distinct difference there? One is a personal attack, one is not. Probably why some of us are rarely if ever banned, while others are banned constantly. Just a thought.
Right. They throw bible verses at you and think that they know everything. Then you get attacked personally, which some of them love to do. You cannot stick up for yourself, or you are branded a child. You can't with these people.
Lybrah, thank you for your comments. I missed one thing earlier though. The responses one gets from the other side of the Cross solidify the inerrancy of the Bible which is the truth and proof of the Living God. Note what the unbelievers did and said at the foot of the Cross, Mark 15:29-31. Another fulfilled prophecy, Psalm 22:7-8. No, we can't take offense personally. Their enmity is not aimed at us, but at God. Hebrews 10:31.
You are right. They need to tear Christ down so that they can feel better about themselves.
Yeah, can't tear something down that was never put up to begin with.
You called me, personally, the worst hypocrite ever, when I specified the post, not the person. You accuse me of horrible things. I understand that you're angry, but lying about people or projecting things onto them is not the way to have a conversation here or in the real world. I'm sincerely sorry you don't seem to get that.
Of course, you know it all, don't you. You have such a way of talking down to people, it infuriates me. I'm not projecting anything. You clearly cannot see for yourself how belittling you are.
If I'm that bad, why are you still taking to me? I don't have s problem with you as a person, although I dislike some of your behavior. You clearly have a problem with me. No one is forcing you to talk to me. Why keep going? Say whatever you want, didn't make it true, thankfully.
You have a great evening, lybrah.
Yes, logic and reason can sometimes seem like they are belittling when you are on the wrong side of logic and reasoning.
Perhaps that why we have some interesting discussions. I understand I'm not going to change you and you understand the same about me so we can talk about all the things I'm right about.
Hope the last part of that wasn't supposed to be representative of it.
LOL. I only speak the truth. I in fact believe if there is a God your chances of picking the right one is minuscule and attempting to persuade others may put you in bad light with said God. I'm doing nothing different than you are doing when you speak of the afterlife and how you will be in God's favour and I will not. It's simple something for you to think about the next time you make such claims about darkness or hell or heaven.
Oh, are you talking about Beth? As I said previously I believe her to be a good person with honest intend. She showed on that occasion her honesty, she I told her such. All that being said I expect to not see you praising anyone one her ever again as you seem to think I'm not allowed to therefor you must not be allowed to. I'll bet if I went back a few pages I'd see you praising someone for what they said. I personally will give praise if I feel someone has made a valid point, Christian, Muslim or not. There were some very honest good Christian people who have become valued friends of mine who no longer participate because of the comments of the more fundamentals.
Oh dear, now you state that I'm incapable of love because of a hardened heart. Such a hateful, thing to say.
"But you hate God"…"you seek to destroy the faith of Christians at every point." " but our job is simply to bring the good news in love and humility" Where is the love and humility in that?
Notice the "this generation" as opposed to "The generation". Talk about twisting words.
I stand by my words of Beth, perhaps you could learn something from her, I have.
First and foremost I have never indicated that I will be in God's favor for eternity and you will not because I have no way of knowing if you will one day be born of the Spirit. I have said before and will say it again - You MAY yet be my unborn brother!
You have made it very clear that you do not believe God exists, any "god", so your attempt to convince me I'd likely picked the wrong one and angered the real one was see-through.
Praise people all you want. I took note that she went from one you persecuted perhaps most to one you were positive toward since her somewhat recent shout out of several Christians. I found it consistent with your overall methods. You should know you will not sway her. She is the Lord's and is sealed by the Holy Spirit.
She has been honest throughout the threads, including every time you persecuted her. Her shout out was not some isolated incident of honesty, though it certainly caught your attention and seemed to change the way you thought of her and treated her. She may or may not see your new approval of her as a positive thing. I have an opinion on it, but that counts little.
Your heart is hardened toward God and the things of God. I said nothing about you having an inability to love.
This is love: That Jesus Christ lay down his life for us. That while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Giving you this message is love, though nothing compared to the love of the Lord for us ALL.
No need to squabble over words, we can as easily say THIS generation speaking of the one that witnesses all the end time events.
I agree wholeheartedly that I can learn from Beth. I have on many occasions. I'm glad you believe you can as well.
Same old. You've made the threat that if I don't think as you do I'll not go to heaven. If I don't change my ways. Same old.
You keep bringing this up. I must have touched a nerve. Give it some thought and you may see the truth in it.
I've persecuted no one, but the last few post I could point to some very nasty things you said about me personally. I don't expect to change her thinking at all, she's said her faith makes her a better person so I wouldn't take that away from her. Just as my lack of faith makes me a better person, would you want to take that away from me?
Well, you've worded it differently this time haven't you? The problem is feeling have nothing to do with wether on believes in a God or not. Some rational thought needs to take place for one to see that. If your daughter grows up and falls in love with a drug dealer, you'd tell her to use reason. Now when we apply reason to what is described as an all powerful all knowing God that allows millions of children to die without ever even hearing about God and therefore going to hell while allowing a murderer to find Christ in prision and make it in to heaven we see a problem. You might tell your daughter to think of her future and that of any children they may have and use reason instead of love especially if we don't even have evidence that the drug dealer exists. Don't be saying I called God a drug dealer.
That's not love, that's a story. You may love the story, but that doesn't mean it's a story and a scary story at that because it's one of human sacrifice when no sacrifice was needed.
No need to squabble over words and add or omit any?
Great, it may be a good Idea to show her some respect and stop treating her like a minion and telling me what she is thinking as if she is unable to do that for herself.
John 14:6 ESV
Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.
Breaking my self-imposed ban here for a post and then I'm gone again. I find it very telling that positive, friendly interactions between atheists and Christians are looked upon with suspicion and bitterness. It seems to be the crux of these forums and is one of the reasons I left. (Besides the bullying and stalking, that frankly I just can't be assed with.) Friendships among people of differing faiths (or none at all) are discouraged by a specific kind of person who seems to want animosity and bitterness rather than open discussion and understanding. This is certainly not a Christ-like attitude, it is the attitude of an abusive personality that is threatened by any of their "cult" conversing without "outsiders." Beth's faith is pretty strong, I seriously doubt she is going to suddenly convert just because she can have a conversation with an atheist without being antagonistic. It's sad that this is discouraged. Very sad. And very against the Word.
As much as I have fairly obvious personality-conflict with Beth, if she said something (and I have no idea what it was) that "called down" other Christians, I am forced to admit she likely had a very good reason to do so and she has my grudging respect for taking a stand. I would probably warm to her after that as well... not because of the Christian vs. Atheist thing, but because I know that it would be hard for her to stand against a group that has given her acceptance. It's a human reaction to be kind to people who have done things that are difficult.
The paranoia that human kindness out of an atheist is an attempt to convert them is telling. To make that assumption, one must have the kind of mind that operates in that way. In short, that person is likely the kind of person that isn't kind without an ulterior motive. I've found that such accusations generally tell far more about the person making them than the person(s) they were aimed at. They also speak of a person who doesn't understand empathy. So basically, a sociopath or narcissist.
Anyway, I'm off again. Not going to be reading responses because I basically DGAF. I'm only here because my interest was temporarily peaked by an outside conversation. And, in closing, good on you Beth.
I haven't been reading this thread... I don't think. I don't know if I've even posted on it. I only read cause I saw your name, Melissa.
I will read back later, maybe since I am apparently involved in something, but I have to go to work at 4 am. Kill me. (Don't literally if you are a psychopath reading this.)
But about that comment you made... about our personality conflict... we were friends at one time, Melissa, remember? We bonded over Beyonce. lol
I hope one day there will be nothing negative between us. I have reached out to be friends several times (with the phone call offer, 'member?) So all that to say, glad to see you. So sorry for the animosity that took over. Hoping for a brighter future someday. And take care of yourself.
That's just more of your super-ego talking. Read your own words again with that in mind and you'll see it as well, if you are open to it.
The parallels are interesting, aren't they?
There exists our "flesh", spoken of in the Word. It wants what it wants, is physically minded and lustful for the things of the world, etc. Freud took note of this aspect of humans and labeled it the "id".
There exists our "soul" - our very beings. God breathed into humans and they became living "beings" or souls created in his image. Freud took note of this aspect of humans and labeled it the "ego".
There exists our "spirit", spoken of in the Word. Our spirits connect with HIS Spirit. Freud took note of this aspect of humans, TWISTED it to say it all came from our parents and culture, and labeled it the superego.
Be careful about what humans teach you, Rad Man. True wisdom comes from above, not your earthly teachers or even your own mind.
LOL, your a human aren't you? Should I be careful about what you teach?
I would have to say the if we were to describe who we are it would be a collection of the different parts of our mind or of our minds as a whole.
Remember the super-ego is not present in young children it develops as is dependant on our observations. It exist in all of us with the possible exception of sociopaths. You can give into it's desires if you like, but you are also training your ego to give into the desires of the ID as well. That may be why we have so many Christians in our prison systems and so few Atheists.
We should be careful of what ALL humans teach (pastors, teachers, prophets, researchers, etc.) and should carefully examine it to see if it lines up with what is taught by the Word and the Spirit. Truth comes from the Word and the Spirit.
We are to bring our flesh into submission to our spirits. This is a human struggle. But when we are filled with the Holy Spirit, then the submission of the flesh is increasingly effortless and successful.
God has designed us with a conscience (spirit?), to be fed by his Holy Spirit. Our conscience IS fed and affected by our parents and other authority figures. This also seems to be God's intent and plan. In a sense the parent "plays God" to the young child. Those who never receive the Lord will still have a conscience that has been and is fed by earthly models. When someone is "born again" of the Spirit, and has the Lord within, then they will receive directly from the Holy Spirit. But they must abide in the Lord to continually receive from the Holy Spirit.
There are many reasons the children of God would be tempted to sin and even would fill jailhouses: 1) The introduction of God's law brings forth the desire in humans to sin (think Adam and Eve); 2) God calls the "least" - calls the outcasts, the sinners, the "low lifes" by human standards, and these are the people who fill jails (you also have to consider that many come to the Lord WHILE in jail because of their hardship, and it's not that they WENT to jail while a Christian); You have no idea what these struggling people would look like WITHOUT the Lord; 3) The tempter and his mighty forces WILL focus on God's children (though they hate all of us created in God's image; they hate those who accept their rights as children most of all); Remember the Dragon (Satan) has waged war against them! So you will find all manner of demonic attack against God's children. It is in Satan's interest to oppress and attack Christians, and it is even in his interest to encourage nonbelievers to become good little citizens for no other reasons than to deceive, confuse things and even convince them they're so good on their own they have no need of a Savior.
All life will not end shortly and so what if it does.
It's much like us asking what happens you we find out that God never existed.
You wouldn't know if all life were about to end shortly. And now when you say "and so what if it does", isn't it you who appears to view life as meaningless?
If God "never existed" I wouldn't find this out, as I would simply die and be no more. So though it seems you'd love to say "I told you so", you'd never get this opportunity. I'd simply go off joyfully believing in my Lord and be no more. BUT God does exist and I will joyfully be reunited with him. And I will not say "I told you so", but you may say to me and your wife and your mother and many others, "You told me so. Thank you."
Sure I would, if a massive commit was about to hit earth, some would still mostly likely survive. Science does tell us when the earth will no longer be able to sustain life, but that's millions of years away. But even then we could be in other solar systems at that point or there could be and most certainly is other life out there.
Even if God does exist logic tells us you most likely have picked the wrong one and may have caused more damage than I and that wouldn't sit well with your Gods.
There is no reason to think all life will end. The earth has been hit will massive commits in the past and life exists. Even if humans die out that doesn't mean life will not continue. It's arrogant to think one we count as life.
So to you life would still be meaningful if humans died out or were destroyed? That's pretty interesting.
Everything has to be just so in this universe for our existence. If anything goes awry...
Your theory and expectation is that there is no God. So if this were true, you'd never get the satisfaction of me finding out you were right after all, because after death, I'd find out nothing.
Someone else's theory and expectation is that their false god, for whom they have a second hand faith, is the true one, but since neither you nor I believe this, there is no concern of what this false god will have to say by either me or you.
My and my brothers and sisters in Christ around the world believe in and expect the return of the One True Lord. Our expectations will be fulfilled and our hopes will not be disappointed. We will have the satisfaction of this, yet we will not rejoice or gloat over those who refused the message, as many wish to do over us. Through the power of the Holy Spirit we will overcome the fleshly nature that might gloat, and we will instead take the attitude of Jesus Christ, and Stephen after him who was filled with the Holy Spirit, and say "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."
You missed it completely.
About 29,000 children under the age of five die daily – 21 each minute – mainly from preventable causes. More than 70 per cent of almost 11 million child deaths every year are attributable to six causes: diarrhoea, malaria, neonatal infection, pneumonia, preterm delivery, or lack of oxygen at birth.
And you going on about hope. Your or my hope? negating the hope of those children or there parents who tirelessly prayed for their child to live. Life is not about hope, your hope to meet with God, but about survival for millions simply because they were born in another place.
You see, I'm not talking about my pain. Why do so many Christian simply gloss over hard facts and pretend God found their keys. It's sad and embarrassing and it's right in front of your face.
Again, the God you trust either can do nothing to save the 29,000 children under 5 that will die today or choses to do nothing. Pick one.
For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life. And who is equal to such a task? Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, as those sent from God. (2 Corinthians 2:15-17)
It's no wonder we're "stinky" to some!
Hello All. I see we are still at square one on the issues, but I must say Cat you are doing a superb job. Amen, brother.
Yeah, disagreeing, mocking, criticizing etc is not persecution. It's disgraceful and shameful to say that it is. It minimizes and trivializes the actual suffering of task people who are legitimately suffering for their beliefs in other parts of the world. Arguing about religion heatedly on the internet and being asked to back up your assertions and having your beliefs or statements criticized and even mocked when you cannot does not equal persecution, regardless of however you try to spin it.
Unless you are being forcibly prevented from worship, unable to go to church, affected, put in jail, tortured, beaten, executed, etc, you are not being persecuted. Develop a thicker skin, recognize that your freedom of speech equally applies to those who disagree with you whether you like it or not and deal with the fact that not everyone believes what you believe and everything will be good.
Persecution is simply defined as "hostility and ill-treatment, especially because of race or political or religious beliefs" and it most certainly does include criticizing and mocking! There are LEVELS of persecution, no doubt, and no one is comparing the verbal taunts and emotional damage done in the forums with the imprisonment and murder of Christians around the world (anymore than we compare the emotional / verbal abuse of a spouse with the murder of a spouse). But we do recognize that all forms of both persecution (from the least to the greatest), like all forms of violence from least to greatest, are wrong and harmful, often on an unknown level, as psychological damage can be much greater than anticipated.
I was speaking of persecution of a sister, so me developing "thicker skin" would have no bearing on this. Anyway the persecution itself wasn't the point I was making, but rather the suspicious turn from persecution to favor following a shout out against several Christians, and my concerns about the motives of this new "favor".
I'm sorry, but it's completely asinine to insist, despite numerous correction attempts, that an atheist hates god. It's simply not true. You cannot logically hate something that you genuinely do not believe exists. If that's what you believe, that's fine, but you simply can't assert it as fact, and it is completely arrogant and rude to assume that you know what's going on in someone else's heart and mind better than they do.
Secondly, regarding the hardened heart, God is responsible for hardening people's hearts in the Bible and then punishing them for what he did.
Please take note that I allowed for it to be his hatred of the "idea" of the "Christian God". This he can hate EVEN if he does not believe in God. He is the most active person in the forums, expending GREAT time and effort to cast down the "Christian God", the Word, the Christian faith, pastors, Christians in general... Even if he were not to acknowledge his hatred, his actions have already told of it.
Our hearts often tend toward hardness. But God softens who he desires to soften. "Hardening" our hearts may even be leaving them in their own natural state.
Not entirely true, can you please attempt to be honest when you are speaking about me?
"But you hate God (even if you want to call it the "idea" of the "Christian God"
You said I hate God even if I call it something different which assumes I'm to stupid to understand what I hate.
I'm not the most active person in these forums at the moment and we haven't seen the most active person in some time.
I'm afraid you are sadly mistaken, I hate no one. I do dislike it when people tell others that if they don't believe in their version of nonsense they must have a hardened heart which means they must have something seriously wrong with them.
I do understand how frustrating this much be for you because I can see it in your words.
No, what you said was "But you hate God (even if you want to call it the "idea" of the "Christian God", and say you can't hate what doesn't exist) " asserting that the subject of his hate was god regardless of what he says to the contrary. Rad and other atheists, myself included, speak against the actions of many Christians, the behavior of many Christians and criticize (and even ridicule) the beliefs that Christianity is comprised of, because in many ways it affects us personally. If all believers were content to keep their beliefs and faith personal and did not try to force others via legislating to comport with those beliefs, we may still criticize the beliefs themselves but I doubt many of us would be as active. I enjoy debates about religion and belief personally because it affects me and I've studied it and its effects my whole life. I'm sorry, but that does not amount to hatred no matter how many times you want to say it does. That would be like me Insisting that you and other believers hate atheists because you spend so much time arguing with us, telling us about hell (universal you, not you specifically) etc regardless of whether we already know or not. Being told that you hate something does not mean that you actually do. It's your preception, and I'm sorry but in this case, I'm fairly certain that your preception is incorrect. Rad is a genuine, kind and warm hearted guy - to Christians and non Christians - all the time. He doesn't hate anyone, and criticizing a belief does not equate to hating a believer. You're way of base, and Insisting that you're correct had no more legitimacy than if I were to start telling you that you hate atheists every time I encountered you in the forums.
Telling someone else as a fact that their hearts are hardened, etc. Is not only arrogant, it's insulting - and you really don't appreciate it when someone does it to you in reverse. You accuse them off twisting things, etc. You're welcome to your opinion and your belief, but presenting those as fact against another hubber is incredibly rude.
At every point, Rad Man expresses that he hates the very idea of the "Christian God" who he claims is a child murderer and such, hates the Christian faith, and hates the Word given to us. You can deny it all you want, and he could even deny it verbally, but all his posts would belie him. Does it take effort to convince yourself that he has no hatred for the "Christian God", the Christian faith and the Word? Do you truly not see his efforts to tear down belief and faith?
Let's be honest about what we hate. Here's what I hate: lies, deceit, Satan and his forces, darkness, violence, apathy, manipulation, taunting, mocking, blasphemy, irreverence, tolerance of wickedness, minimization of evil, etc. There is no person I hate, but I will readily acknowledge hatred for any THING that stands opposed to God and his ways. So I hate mockery, but not the mocking unbeliever; deception (intentional or not), but not the person who deceives; blasphemy, but not the person who blasphemes the Lord, etc. You likewise say you do not hate the person, the Christian. Okay. Rad Man would likely say the same. But what IS hated, while not a person, is evident, and it would probably be better to hate a person than (the idea of) the Lord, the Word and the true faith.
Speaking spiritually, the soft heart receives the Lord, the hard heart does not. I am not implying anything about a "soft" or "hard" heart in the earthly sense of it, which is to speak of a kind person versus a cold person.
There is only One God and he makes people right with himself only one way - through faith in our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Can you find even one quote where rad has said he hates anything or any one? I'm sure he hates, as I do, the behavior that allows believers of any kind to try to trample another person's rights or liberties. I'm sure he hates the interpretation of beliefs that allow believers of any God to torture and kill and injure those who believe differently. You can see that as hatred of your God or your beliefs, but how you see things doesn't necessarily comport to anyone else's reality but yours. There are some believers of many different faiths who glow with love for their fellow human beings. They treat others with respect and kindness, and are treated with kindness and respect in return. Others, like those who threaten with hell out tell non believers to "look forward to the tribulation" do not. I respect kindness, decency and respect. I can respect many of your statements and your faith, but I cannot accept your assertions, assumptions or claims of fact that are not backed up by anything that is true or meaningful to anyone but you. These assertions and accusations of hatred and persecution are meaningless. You can believe them all you want, but they're most certainly not true. They are no more true than me Insisting repeatedly that while you say you hate Satan and lying etc, etc, you truly hate unbelievers, and your words and actions show the truth of it, regardless of whether or not you admit it. I doubt you would take kindly to such repeat assertions. Why, then, treat others the way you do not want to be treated?
Sure, Rad loves... loves the Word...loves the Truth, the Life and the Way. Loves the Creator, God Almighty, the Ruler of all. Loves His people, loves the bride of Christ... Wait, I don't know that Rad will agree.
Who doesn't hate wicked interpretations of Scriptures used to justify harm of others? Every Christian I know hates that. So then you're saying he hates only what we hate? Silly me, thinking he was attacking the Way!!
In this post you say, "I respect kindness, decency and respect." A few posts back you indicate that mocking and criticizing Christians is okay and doesn't qualify as persecution; we should just get thicker skin. Which is it?
Truly I wish we would speak in love only, but I do understand the frustration and anger. I sympathize with those stumbling on either side. We all stumble, it's called being human. But the aim needs to be higher. Surely we can agree that such actions as mocking the faith and the faithful are not okay? Or maybe not. Mock if you must. You know the Word well, no doubt, and I will never imply otherwise. So you already know... God cannot be mocked. We reap what we sow. To Him be all glory both now and forevermore. Amen!
So...you can't find the quote then?
I was also under the impression that JM said it was fine to mock and critisize BELIEFS when they are presented as fact with nothing to back it up. Mocking and critisizing still doesn't count as persecution. if you are being discriminated against, assaulted, jailed, and barred from public places because of your faith, THAT is persecution.
Your message would be better received if you stopped being dishonest, stopped twisting words around, stopped ignoring requests to back up your claims, and actually paid attention to what was being said.
I already conceded that Rad Man loves the Way, loves the Lord, etc. etc. etc. Loves, loves, loves! No quote needed.
Again, here's the definition of persecution that seems to be escaping some: hostility and ill-treatment, especially because of race or political or religious beliefs. This would include criticizing and mocking someone's religious beliefs. Persecution, like abuse, occurs on various LEVELS. We are not stating that the taunting, mocking and such against Christians is equivalent to the imprisonment, murder and such of Christians throughout the world, any more than we consider the mental abuse of a partner the same as the murder of a partner. Nonetheless, we recognize that ALL levels of persecution and abuse are unacceptable and often more harmful than understood or acknowledged. And so the aim is to eliminate ALL LEVELS of persecution, just as it is the aim regarding partner abuse.
And here is what some seem to be missing as well. Critisizing and mocking beliefs does not constitute as hostility and ill treatment towards the person holding those beliefs. I am not sure why you seem to think criticizing and mocking go hand in hand either, if believers attempted to answer questions posed to them and/or provide evidence for their claims from the start, mocking in any form would rarely happen. There would be no need for it.
There is a major difference between "your beliefs are silly" and "you are silly because of your beliefs". For whatever reason, the people who cry persecution the most cannot tell the difference between the two, even when explained to them in the simplest way possible repeatedly. If you can point out an example of the latter, we might make some form of progress.
So Would you agree that atheists are persecuted for their non belief as well then? If you do, I would hope you realize they are persecuted, by your definition, much worse than Christians are.
But this is not your aim. Please stop persecuting non believers. Thanks.
So you can't find one example of rad saying he hates anything, but you think you know his intention and motivation better than he does?
There is nothing wrong with criticizing, condemning, mocking or ridiculing a belief. Some beliefs are ridiculous, and they should be challenged. If I believe that drinking gasoline and hanging out next to a bonfire will prevent cancer, then that belief is ridiculous. The thing is that mocking, challenging or criticizing a belief is not the same thing as attacking or persecuting the person who believes it. Challenging beliefs and ideas leads to progress. It leads to innovation. It leads to conversation, explanation and understanding. I don't have to respect beliefs or ideas. You sure don't. Many other believers sure don't. I noticed that you didn't bother Correcting or speaking out against Lybrah, a fellow believer, and some of the rude and insulting things she was saying to me and others. But you expect atheists to be respectful across the board and call out any other atheist who isn't? Why are we expected to maintain a higher standard and police or own, when many Christians don't seem to bother?
Interpretations of Scripture - or anything else - are interpretations. They're opinions. Some are general consensus, some aren't. In case you haven't noticed, even Christians can't agree on interpretations. There are thousands of denominations as a result. So if Christians can't even agree, why should we? Unless you are claiming to be god, who are you to decide which interpretations are good, and which are wicked? The good ones are the ones you agree with, the wicked ones just happen to be those that you don't agree with? Don't you see that as convenient? Additionally, in case you didn't notice, various interpretations have drastically changed in the last 2000 years.
What i hate are people who insist that their beliefs are fact and that everyone else should fall in line, just because they say so. For every Bible verse a Calvanist can point to and claim it justifies their doctrine, a Catholic can use another verse to show is wrong and their interpretation is correct. Same goes for Baptists, for Lutherans, for pentecostals, etc. It's all subjective, and people see what they want to see. Maybe the atheists are the one looking at the whole thing without doctrinal bias and realizing that it doesn't make sense - only to be lambasted because even though we're reading the same words, we don't have an invisible magic friend whispering in our head the difference between what it says and what it really "means" to justify how it makes sense. Maybe if God was half as good of a communicator as he was a killer all this wouldn't be left up to interpretation in the first place.
Yes, I know what the Bible says, but just because I don't buy it and you do does not mean that you're right and I'm wrong or visa versa. Without evidence to support your claims, however, there is no reason for me to simply take your word for anything.
Rad hates nothing of God; Rad loves everything of God. No quote or post indicates otherwise in all his thousands of posts. Nothing but love. I conceded. (I'm Lisa marrying the carrot now.)
Mocking the Lord, mocking the Word, mocking Christians, telling those who've walked with the Lord they're delusional, etc. etc. etc. This is all okay because it's only challenging our beliefs. Okay, marrying the carrot.
It is true that I do not believe or even respect all beliefs. Yet I don't visit sites of other religions, seeking out people of other religions to tell them how ridiculous their god, their beliefs, their doctrines, etc. are. When someone of a Mormon faith, for example, comes to me in my neighborhood I don't mock them. Rather, I say we agree that Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior. But I have concerns about what's been added by the Mormons, particularly what contradicts Scriptures. It's all very respectful, very pleasant. We disagree, but no mocking is done.
I've heard mention of a recent dispute between a couple of you and Lybrah. But I wasn't following it and don't know what it involved. I don't expect atheists to "police" their own. I've seen no such policing going on (with one exception in my 8 months here), and have seen instead a blind eye turned toward any and all manipulation, taunting, etc. of believers. I have to be honest, if I were prone to stereotyping and I were to stereotype atheists based on my interactions with them here, I'd be stereotyping them as downright mean and uncaring. But I'm not prone to stereotyping, I understand those in the forums are not representative of all, and I have not experienced this sort of negative behavior from atheists in person (the conversations with many in person have been quite enjoyable). Perhaps it points to the difficulties in written, online communication. Perhaps forums are not a worthwhile avenue for either party.
As for interpretation of Scripture and knowledge, I'll say simply this: Christians of every denomination say in unity that Jesus Christ is Lord! We say this by the working and knowledge that comes from the Holy Spirit. Whatever else the Spirit does or does not reveal to us is insignificant in comparison. You will not find much criticism from me of any of the denominations (any more than you'll find much criticism of my brothers and sisters in Christ) for I believe they/we all have their/our own strengths and weaknesses. I align myself with no denomination. I seek only to be led of the Spirit and to worship the Lord in unity with others.
Again, you looking solely at someone’s interaction on the internet in a contentious forum and deducing from that alone that it indicates hatred is meaningless. One could easily say the same thing about some of your words and behavior towards non-believers or Christians that disagree with you, but you would insist that it simply isn’t true – which also is meaningless. You can marry the carrot all you want, but simply deciding that someone is full of hatred due to forum posts is equally ridiculous – but you can’t even admit that much, even when the person you’re talking about has disagreed and shared his view.
I’d ask you to point out where someone has insulted a Christian, and not criticized their beliefs. If that happened, I imagine a ban was soon forthcoming. I’m sure it happens. I’ve seen it happen on both sides. I try to speak out against it – but if it’s a Christian, other Christians usually come to their rescue with “oh, it was deserved” or “oh they’re defending their faith” or “all we’re all sinful and fall short of expectations”. If an atheist does it, however, it’s used to justify the accusation that we’re persecuting you. Again, a double standard and the smell of blatant hypocrisy.
I’ve gone around and around in circles with you explaining why I personally have these discussions, but you either don’t accept it or you don’t care for my reasons, and want to just invent your own and decide on a whim that your reasons are more true than the person actually doing it. But, once again, for the record, I have these discussions because
1) I want to. It’s fun for me. It’s a hobby that I find enjoyable. As soon as it stops being fun, I’m not going to continue.
2) Since I was raised in the faith, worked as a missionary and studied in a Christian university, I have knowledge and interest in the subject. That interest didn’t vanish overnight as soon as I realized I didn’t believe it anymore, and expecting it to simply disappear is unrealistic. Therefore these conversations allow me to talk about it and understand different points of view.
3) Christianity in particular affects my daily life. Laws are being passed and enforced based on Christian ideals that conflict with and infringe upon my rights and liberties – and the rights and liberties of others. Until that changes, I will fight against the illegality of inserting a particular religion in government, daily life etc.
There was no recent dispute, and you don’t need to look any further than THIS forum. I responded to a post by someone, saying that the post was a lie and hypocritical. I didn’t not call the person who wrote it any names. I find it arrogant to the extreme when Christians deem it fitting and appropriate to tell non-Christians what they think, feel or believe, and I said as much. To that, I was called personally the worst hypocrite, and she attempted to insult me. You did nothing. I’m sorry, but me and several other atheists have come to a Christian’s defense if we see that a line has been crossed, or that a newcomer is being overtly rude/insulting/breaking the rules. If you haven’t seen it in all of the forums you’ve graced with your presence, then you’re either intentionally missing it, or you’re not paying attention – but to assume that it’s never happened when I know it has because I’ve done it and personally witnessed it is a falsehood. Deciding that atheists online are mean and uncaring is similarly meaningless. You’re deciding something based on your biased view of what you’ve witnessed on a single site. Trust me, we’re downright pleasant compared to some other sites and some other writers on BOTH sides. What I say in the forums is in a very specific situation to a very specific group of people. It is not indicative necessarily of how I treat others in the real world. These conversations get heated constantly – strangely, when I have religious conversations outside of hubpages, both people are polite, the conversations are actually productive and we both leave smiling and sharing a beer. I don’t think you understand the nature of forums and the conversations that take place there if you think this is truly indicative of real life behavior. If you want to think I’m cruel or mean or angry, that’s certainly your prerogative – but you’re wrong. Unfortunately, I don’t think you’re ever going to change your mind. Fortunately, however, what you think of me really matters very little.
Hostility and ill-treatment? You think criticizing and condemning certain words and actions and behaviors of people is hostility and ill-treatment towards the person as an individual? Sure you can take it that way, but again – how you take something isn’t necessarily indicative of its overall truth. Sure you can decide that words on an internet are hostile or that you're being ill-treated, but I define those terms differently. I would say that if your religious beliefs were outlawed, and you were thrown in jail for practicing them, that would be ill treatment. I would say being dragged out by a mob and having rocks thrown at you to be hostile. Both of those things are being faced by Christians around the world. If you want to believe that you're being persecuted because someone is saying mean things (according to you) on the internet, then yeah - I think a thicker skin needs to be developed, or those conversations should be avoided. Claiming persecution because you don't like how you're being talked to demeans the real, actual suffering experienced by many around the world - and not just Christians, either. You choose to be offended by something. I choose not to. Maybe it's just one of our fundamental differences. By your definition alone, however, you and most other Christians I’ve interacted with on this site are guilty of persecuting atheists and other Christians of varying denominations that do not agree with your positions. Are you going to admit that, then, or is it another hypocritical double standard?
Oh – and not every Christian denomination proclaims Jesus as Lord in the way that you do. Some don’t accept him as equal to God. There are still lots of variations. So your point there is rather moot.
I usually don't read the long responses but yours caught me. It did have some good points, points that both sides of the debate should take note of. But then came your "Oh" statement at the end and it generated a couple questions.
"Christian," how would you define the word? Can one be a Christian and not believe that Jesus Christ is the Lord God? Can one be a Christian and not believe that every word of the Bible is God given, inspired, in its original form? Does following a doctrine or attending a certain church make one a Christian? And let's not see these as sanctimonious statements. They do not negate people from being good people with good intentions because they are not "Christians."
For the more "adamant" against Christianity, I accept the reasoning mind weights both sides of a subject as it should before responding. However, the questions are quite direct as to subject matter. Let's not confuse the issue with questions regarding "proving or disproving God's existence," that is outside the subject matter and do not merit replies at this time.
Allow me to point out that it is still possible to insult someone without blatantly calling them names. And yes, tone can be deducted online. As for choosing to be offended, I don't think anyone chooses to feel bad, sometimes you can't hold back tears or laughter. Emotions are going to exist whether you "choose them or not."
That being said, "you're silly because of your beliefs" and "your beliefs are silly" do have different meanings, yes, but both are negative statements and can be interpreted as insults.
If you don't want to be told how silly your beliefs are, you should stop pushing such silly beliefs. Odd - you despise non believers and think your Invisible Super Being will punish them for eternity for not believing - do you not think this is insulting?
Most adults are capable of taking criticism and knowing that it has nothing to do with negativity or insults. Even teenagers manage that. Helps them to become better people. Odd how keeping an open mind does that.
If someone told me my work ethic sucked because my station was always messy and i dressed and worked like a lazy bum, they arent insults if they are true (does that sound familiar at all?). Now if i am the best worker out of the whole company and strive to be the bestest best ever, to then have someone say those things, since they aren't true they would be negative insults. I can choose to be offended by either one, but only the second example would i have any true right to be offended by.
So to clarify, "you are silly because of your beliefs" is a negative insult. "your beliefs are silly" is criticism provided actual reasons are given. In most cases, they are given, in your case specifically, they always are given to you. You just ignore them and think you have been insulted for no reason.
Link, there is a way to say things. You should always try to be tactful and stay as positive as possible.
Just like you do, right? You're the example we could all follow of tactful and respectful? Treat others like you want to be treated? I'm fairly certain that the thing that had you so upset was the fact that I was treating you EXACTLY the same way you were taking to me and others and you didn't like it one little bit.
Are you for real right now Lybrah? I cant even begin to comprehend how you will sleep tonight after saying that. This has to be the pinnacle of hypocrisy i have ever witnessed.
I question your beliefs, you get offended because you cant answer the questions.
You insult me because of that and I put on my sarcastic smarty pants, to then be told i am hateful and need jesus.
You defame me amd gloat about it, i get legitimately pissed off about it, but i am still hateful and need jesus.
Even after all of that, i continue to ask you questions in regards to your faith, you still cannot answer them, insult me along with others, ignore your own role in all disputes and attempt to play the victim even when you are shown to be in the wrong by MULTIPLE people.
But...i am the one who must remain tactful and positive at all times....
I would assume you are going to take your own advice, and from this point on i should never see you say another negative thing again, right? then maybe, just maybe, we could actually have a conversation where you dont have to insult or threaten me will hellfire, and i dont have to a sarcastic donkey to point how hypocritical you are being.
Wouldnt that be nice?
You are forgetting the 11th Commandment.
"Thou shalt do as I say, not as I do."
Link, will you let go of the defaming thing? Don't you forgive and forget? I do not consider being ganged up upon by several people as I was proved wrong. I still think I am right and they are wrong. I will try to be nicer to you from now on.
Ahh, my bad. I guess i could have chosen the plethora of other things you have done to make the same point. Which would you have preffered? Threats of hellfire? Calling people fools? Wishing suffering upon people with whatever tribulation is coming?
I am sure you dont see the hypocrisy here, but you do realize that you are the last person to talk about forgiving and forgetting right? I can barely disagree with you without you calling me some such name, saying that i need jesus, or just being condescening in general, BEFORE i start being sarcastic to you.
Do you know the reason people "gang" up on you? Because it sounds like you have absolutely no clue, even though its been spelled out to you each and every time. Unless you can, oh i dont know, point out specific examples, no you arent right. At all. But since you have been asked a dozen times to do that and ignored the request each time, you will continue to see it your way i am sure.
I could really care less if you are nicer to me specifically or not, the more you arent the more i will point out your flaws and hypocrisy.
What you SHOULD do is be a nicer personal in general, and hopefully by extension a better christian, because you are failing incredibly in both departments as of late.
Link, I do not think myself worse than any other person on here. The person who has shown the most tolerance, grace, and maturity is Cat. Everyone else, including you, has had their moments.
Hmmmm, tolerance, grace and maturity?
What exactly is she tolerant of? Me saying nice thing and being kind to believers? No she doesn't tolerate that.
Where exactly has she shown grace? The grace in telling me that I have a sinister dark plan for being nice to someone and then acting like that someone is too stupid to protect herself?
Maturity? really? Is it mature to suggest that atheists are offended by the word of god, or of believers preaching it. Is it mature to have believers constantly telling us what we are offended by, without bothering to ask - to be told what we think, what we feel, what we know, what we believe. No matter how many times someone tells us we're angry, or bitter, or rude, or hateful or hiding the truth from ourselves, it doesn't make it any more than bold assertions that have no basis or meaning in any reality outside of the person asserting its mind.
Hmmmm, how should we word it so that you will not feel insulted? Say for example someone came here and went on about how Santa is watching us and making a list. How exactly would you propose you tell him his belief is silly?
Chances are the person wouldn't believe what they were saying and would be messing with you. Still, just given the chance that they were mentally ill, I'd hope no one would ridicule, taunt or mock the person believing in Santa.
Believing in Santa and other characters is abnormal behavior. Belief in God is normal human behavior. Neither should be ridiculed, but one if truly believed should be referred for help, while the other should be understood as normal behavior.
"Can one be a Christian and not believe that Jesus Christ is the Lord God?"
Yes - not all Christians believe in the trinity whereby 3 entities are actually one. Only one is the God that created the earth, and it wasn't Jesus.
"Can one be a Christian and not believe that every word of the Bible is God given, inspired, in its original form?"
Yes. As the bible is full or errors, contradictions and outright falsehoods, very few Christians accept it as written. It all needs "interpretation", and everyone interprets it differently. Unspoken (and unacknowledged) is that a god of love would not produce such errors or write in such a way that no one could understand the meaning is a good indication that it was written by man, for man's purposes.
In addition, in the original form (written in a dead language that no one today can truly understand and after being passed down verbally for centuries) it is not even available to the vast majority of people today. Unless, of course, you want to claim that the people picking and choosing which of the ancients texts were to be included in the bible were "inspired" by God as they promoted their own beliefs and power structure with the selections and translations.
What then is the purpose of the Bible in Christianity if it is not believed, in total and as inerrant? On what logical premise does this belief system reside?
It is a completely illogical belief system. Glad you asked.
Organized religion, which defined both the religion we know today AND it's holy scriptures, was and is designed to control the masses, maintain the power base of the VIP's and pad the coffers of the church.
As far as logic in religion - it is nonexistent.
But not all denominations hold that the Bible is inerrant and infallible. Not by a long shot. And biblical scholars have agreed by majority for the most part that it is simply not possible in many instances to know what the original texts even said, and many of the epistles specifically were not written by the person who claims to have written them. This is nothing new in scholarly circles, but the majority of Christians either didn't get the memo or want to argue against the scholarship with no credentials with which to do so.
As far as what defines a Christian, it's not me. If someone tells me that they're a Christian, I'm most likely going to take it at face value. I was never a person to go around measuring people with the no true scotsman fallacy where if I don't like their doctrines, practices or beliefs and interpretations, they're not a "real Christian" like this other person is. Could they be lying? Sure. But trying to determine what makes a true Christian just gets a bunch of religious people arguing amongst themselves and chasing their tails. You don't need atheists to be divisive. You're divisive enough all on your own. If someone's interpretation, doctrine, behavior, etc. Doesn't line up with what you think it should be, be the kind of Christian that you want to be. Telling someone that they're not a real Christian is ludicrous especially on the Internet with a bunch of strangers, and it's not your determination that matters in the long run. I doubt if God was real, he'll walk up to you in judgement day and ask for your opinion or assessment on other people's souls. In fact, I sincerely doubt he would require or want any humans assistance, do you?
It is the Lord who defines who is and who is not his own. Romans 8:9 - However, you are not in the flesh but in the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God dwells in you. But if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, he does not belong to Him. Romans 4:14-16 - We have seen and testify that the Father has sent the Son to be the Savior of the world. Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God, God abides in him, and he in God. We have come to know and have believed the love which God has for us. God is love, and the one who abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.…
It makes sense that those who do not believe the truth of our Lord will take at face value anyone's claim to be a Christian. Yet we know there are many wolves in sheep's clothing and many proclaiming Jesus with their mouths whose hearts are far from him.
While God alone knows who will be saved in the end, we can and should use discernment so that we recognize who is of Christ presently (doesn't mean those who are not won't later be born again). One of the most basic ways to recognize is given in 1 John 4:3 - By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God; and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God; this is the spirit of the antichrist, of which you have heard that it is coming, and now it is already in the world.
Re your earlier post, JMcFarland, I'm concerned about the minimizing of lesser levels of persecution (e.g., taunting, ridiculing and mocking) against Christians. I'm as concerned for others as for myself, so it won't suffice for me personally to develop thicker skin. You outright say mocking and ridiculing are okay. They're not. I am curious, do you think that emotional abuse of partners should not be addressed because it might diminish the appreciation for "real" partner abuse, such as severe beatings and even murder? You see, that's not how these things work. The more unacceptable you make the least of the behaviors (whether persecution or abuse), the more unacceptable ALL the behaviors are eventually viewed. I hope you'll reconsider your acceptance of this lowest level of persecution.
Not so concerned for others? Only Christians. It's funny how you can insult, ridicule and demean, but that's okay because it's not directed at Christians.
BTW, if you are really interested in saving people why not put your efforts in people who have never heard of Jesus? Those are the ones that have no chance. Those are the ones that your God is said to have put forth actions that disallow these people from joining you in heaven. Those are the people who through no fault of there own are doomed according to you, while the murderer finds the lord in his last hours and gets in. That must be a heaven burden to carry.
I've never tried to ridicule you, Rad Man. Calling you out on your attacks against the "Christian God", the Word, the Christian faith, and your verbal persecution of Christians, does NOT itself constitute ridicule and persecution.
I've also never said anyone is doomed. My God saves, and who and when he saves is up to him, not me.
But your advice to "put your efforts in people who have never heard of Jesus" is not bad advice, though it is a very small group these days. Christianity has (as prophesied) reached, been embraced by and changed the lives of people around the world (as opposed to other religions being more specific to certain areas).
I have an idea. And it's a good one. The next time I show you and others how silly and illogical your beliefs are why not (rather than crying about being ridiculed and persecuted) attempt to show me how wrong I am.
I am not sure why you insist on being dishonest.
Can you quote where JM said it was perfectly okay to mock and ridicule christians for no reason? Because i can quote where she said it was okay to criticize and mock any beliefs that are asserted as fact with no evidence. I am not sure how you see criticism to be on par with intentional emotional and physical abuse and murder.
Please go tell the families of the people who have been murdered for their beliefs that you are being persecuted by random strangers on the internet because they disagree with you and see if they take you seriously.
I didn't say JM considered herself to have no "reason" to ridicule and mock. So what if there's a "reason"? Some also justify abusing partners, saying they asked for it by doing something wrong. I don't consider any "reason" to justify any level of persecution, just as I don't consider it to justify abuse.
I also did NOT compare verbal persecution of people of faith to the beating and murder of partners. What I compared it to was the verbal/emotional abuse of partners.
The beatings, imprisonment, murder, etc. of Christians is the greater level of persecution. Ridicule, mocking, taunts, etc. are the lesser level of persecution. Likewise, beating, murder, etc. of a partner is the severe form of partner abuse, while verbal / emotional abuse is the lesser form. The more unacceptable we make the lesser forms of harmful behavior (whether persecution or abuse), the more unacceptable all forms are viewed, and we move in an ever more positive direction in this area. AND it's been found that these often minimized verbal forms are far more damaging than people realize.
Hold on. Calling you on your beliefs and pointing out how illogical and irrational they are is now "abuse."?
Thank goodness you guys are no longer allowed to burn atheists at the stake as you used to be allowed to do.
No, it's persecution.
Lower levels of persecution (verbal taunts, ridicule, mocking, etc.) was compared to lower levels of partner abuse (verbal and emotional) in that both are viewed as insignificant compared to the greater levels - beatings, murder, etc., YET both are still harmful AND we need to move toward greater intolerance of ANY LEVEL of persecution, just as we are moving in that direction regarding abuse.
Well - I have an idea. Why don't you stop spreading your fear mongering beliefs and I will stop pointing out how ridiculous they are. Then no one gets berated for not believing (as you do all the time) or told that you are speaking for god and no one gets their beliefs ridiculed (as I do all the time).
Do we have a deal?
Cat, no one is taking away your rights. You enjoy and utilize the freedom of speech granted you by the bill of rights, and if anyone tried to take that from you, I'd be first in line to fight for your right.
Comparing your definition of persecuting to spousal verbal/emotional abuse fails on so many levels, I find it hard to believe that a therapist would use it. Abuse of any kind causes demonstrable harm. Criticizing, mocking or challenging a belief does not. Beliefs do not have feelings. If you choose to take a criticism of your belief personally, it is not the problem of the person making the statement, it's your problem. You choose to be here and participate on these forums of your own free will, and you're free to leave anytime you like. You dish it out constantly to other Christians and non believers who confront you. While applauding and defending the bad behavior of those who do agree with you. You don't see that as persecuting though. It's only somehow persecuting if it's happening to you or someone you agree with and support. Why is that?
What seems to be happening is that you're confusing push back against your traditional Christian privilege as persecution. Suddenly you can't get away with saying and doing whatever you want without resistance from people who don't agree with you. You see that resistance as persecution. It's not.
Your beliefs can't get offended, only you can. You cannot separate the criticism of your belief from a criticism of you as an individual, and most people are able to distinguish the difference. It's part of definition maturity. Or, On the flip side, it's entirely possible that you are able to tell the difference, but you're choosing to see it as persecution because Jesus said that people persecuted for believing in him would be rewarded and you want your share.
Should everyone on both sides be nicer? Probably. But even admitting that, you do not have the right to expect others to fall in line with the way you expect to be treated - especially when the person making the expectation turns around and displays the exact same type of behavior that they're condemning. You're not able to impose rules on others that you expect them to abide by when you do not abide by them yourself. You're railing against atheists on the Internet, but by YOUR own definition, you are just as guilty of persecuting them as you think they are of persecuting you.
Well He hasn't asked for any advice in the past, and He doesn't change.
The word "Christian" is an enigma in today's world. It is a scriptural word which identifies a certain group of people and not that group to which the word is commonly applied today. However, it does identify a certain group by their faith and belief.
Perspective has somewhat to do with defining Christianity, and we can only really speak from our own perspective of the subject. Theologians of today are another of the many fulfilled prophecies of the Bible.
If we do not like something or it doesn't have the profit level we want, or a myriad of other reasons, we are free to ignore it the item and move on to that which is more pleasant. (You are free to ignore me as I do certain other purposefully "less than pleasant" folks.)
To pull all these together, God authored a Book which at times may be mysterious to all of us. However, it does not fit with the mores' of today's world. And the folks that defend the Book do not agree with the pc. So now comes the theologians of greater knowledge. They have new and profound ideas about what God is all about. So they decide, either as individuals (ESV) or as groups (NIT) to re-invent the meanings of words. The result is confusion among the people listening but peer pressure (love that term) does not allow for the majority to voice a question let alone an opinion. And, the theologians, they run around slapping each other on the back for a job well done. And their followers don't even know they have been fleeced, morally and economically.
And now we come back to the Bibles of today. Whose words are they really? Are it God's word written for the benefit of mankind or are they corrupt writings, written for a purpose, to draw in the masses and make a buck? Check the inside cover of these Bibles the world uses today. Is it "copyrighted?" How does man copyright God's words? And what is the purpose of a copyright? To insure nobody but you makes money from its $ale$.
The word "Christian" identifies folks that believe Jesus Christ is the Lord and savior of all. The Bible is the record of His works, and more, things predicted, things that led up to His works and things that will take place after His earthly travels. And we are seeing them take place.
So, then, how can folks hold to a Bible and say I am a Christian, but I don't really believe the Bible is true? We all stumble around the planet being and doing things we know are not right, even when we try not to. But this is just the lot of mankind, and I don't expect that to change. However, it does not equate to the hypocrisy (acting) of those the pick and choose what to believe from day to day based on what feels good or is the most lucrative.
Interesting, so you don't like it when I agree and let a Christian know that I agree with them, but it's okay for you to do that.
Rad Man, I've applauded you for being nice and encouraging toward Christians before. For example, when you defended Headly after JM dissed him, and you encouraged him to write a book, I said how sweet that was.
The problem is not that you're suddenly being nice and encouraging to this particular Christian who you were previously nasty toward, but the problem is that you're being nice to her ONLY AFTER AND BECAUSE she dissed several Christians upon coming in at the end of a situation you instigated.
See the difference? I'm encouraging your NICE behavior... look how sweet that you defended Headly and encouraged him. In contrast, you're encouraging NASTY behavior... she spoke against four or five Christians WHO DID NOTHING WRONG and several of whom were defending me against YOUR inappropriate comments!
Please let this end here. I know your bitter when I called you out like that, I had forgotten what this was all about and I really don't want to discuss you any more.
Not going for the deal to stop the "abuse" and "persecution" then?
Odd how no religionist ever takes the deal that would prevent all this conflict. Wonder why.
Do you mean me Cat? Did I diss anyone? I surely didn't mean to if I did.
It really wasn't such a big deal. You were having a difficult day and were frustrated with several of us (me and a couple of Christians defending me against Rad and others), as well as another Christian or two not involved in that.
I guess my thinking is that we should be cautious about any sudden favor coming from worldly places. As much as we all desire love and acceptance, there are a few people here that would make me concerned if they suddenly started singing my praises. You're a lovely person, Beth, and beloved of our Father, and I wasn't trying to say anything that would upset you or make you feel badly. I guess in a sense I was telling Rad: back off! I'm sorry if I've put you in an uncomfortable position.
I know the thread you mean... notorious. I remember feeling like the fighting should stop. It was incessant and out of control. I think we spend a lot of time here and we get really invested, but if we step back and catch our breath, I think we will see that if we simply let things go, the arguments cannot persist. I think of Jesus going to the cross. Who was more innocent than him? Yet he spoke not a word in his defense. I think of his admonition to turn the other cheek. That's why I make a lot of jokes. I have the choice to say nothing, which I have been railed for. I can defend myself, but I have seen (as with your case that day) it becomes chum in the water. It draws more sharks and starts a frenzy. So sometimes, the hardest thing to do, is to walk away... let ppl say unfair and even untrue things about you, and know that your Father in Heaven knows the truth. In the long run, that is all that matters. Once we get caught up in defending ourselves... who will be here to defend our faith? I know that you have a heart to simply see that the truth of the word is shared, and I stand behind you on that, but when it comes to personal defense... (something we all do at times) we have to suck it up and walk away at some point, and the sooner the better.
Yes, I understood your point in all that. Still the defense wasn't only for me, but for all in similar situations. I tend to be quick to defend others I see being taunted as well. Same in person. I was always the tiny kid standing up to bullies literally twice my size. From an early age, if I saw someone taunting someone else, I'd run up and try to stop the bully (had to learn boys don't actually like girls coming to their defense). I still have to be stopped from going up to strangers who are yelling at someone (like in incidents of road rage) and warned that someone could pull a gun out one of these days. I suppose the "quick to defend" is a part of my personality I should curb when it comes to self, and perhaps maintain only for others.
Is there a reason then that you only seem to defend other believers in these forums, and never a non believer who, by your definition of the Word, being persecuted by a believer?
In person, do you ask someone's religious preference before you come to their aid? I'm sorry, but I'll defend anyone regardless of their beliefs I'd they're being attacked (actually attacked, not your meaning) and If you're just as guilty of the behavior you want to criticize us for, how are you ANY better?
If people are being rude to each other, I'm not going to defend either one, and I'm not going to say anything. They can work it out.
I don't ridicule you or others. I've called out ridicule and other attacks against God, the Word, the Christian faith and Christians. There's a big difference.
I don't care the beliefs of the people being bullied, and I don't ask them. If I saw you being bullied, I'd come to your defense. But the squabbles I've seen you in looked mutual to me.
Still not going for the deal then. Why is that?
Got to ask - how do you "attack" a god?
In this case you were accusing me of being malicious for saying I like someone and also assuming the other person can't defend themselves. All that when the other person wasn't even here. Talk about persecution and school yard bully tactics.
I think you own me an apology. You've kind of apologized to Beth, but not me.
You got "brownie points" from me when you defended Headly and encouraged him; Beth seems to have gotten "brownie points" from you when she gave a "shout out" to several Christians. It seemed you were happy to see critical behavior toward Christians, and that wasn't right to me and it concerned me. I also can't say I'm okay with a lot of what I've received from you in these forums, Rad, or your comments against God, the Way, the Word, the faith and the brethren. But you know what, you felt persecuted, you feel you should receive an apology, so then I am sorry. I don't want you feeling persecuted or wronged. I just want you to curb some of the negativity and the kudos to others for any negativity toward Christians.
Rad, some ppl used to single out Motown and say she was the only real Christian. Or they would say if they were to get saved, it would be by someone like her. (Not that it works like that. lol) But I remember feeling singled out as a bad guy while she was treated as a friend. Suggesting that there is a competition between us Christians is a ludicrous notion. But for sure I felt that many were trying to turn it into that. So I am thinking that deep down, that may be how Cat feels. Imagine if she said...
"I share my beliefs in this forum, b/c that is what this forum is for. It hurts me when you choose to embrace everyone who doesn't get behind something I've said. When I become your enemy, and even ppl who share the same beliefs as mine, become your friend, it makes me feel singled out and I wonder if you are doing that on purpose, simply to hurt me. I am a nice person and I wish you could see me for the person I am, instead of the villain you want to make me out to be."
She is not attacking you, she just questions your motives. She is not perfect, but surely you are not either. Maybe you owe her an apology as well. In an argument, there can never be a solely right person.
She was questioning my motives for giving you kudos. She mentioned that my motive may in on the dark side and that I was trying to be nice to you so I can take advantage of that niceness. That is a rather wicked way of thinking and for that I do not owe her an apology.
I don't believe Mo was ever called a real Christian or the only Christian and I can't imagine anyone every saying if we'd switch sides it would be because of her. She was attacked by many because of her Catholicism which I was able to identify with because of my background. The thing is none of us Atheists were able to debate her because of her inherent logic and kindness. If I could find a world where everyone was like her (and I mean everyone) I'd pick it. She is for me at least a very close personal friend and I can only hope she feels the same for me. I have the very same relationship with at least 4 other Christians that used to and possible still post their opinions here.
I am a very apologetic person, I do so to my family and friends all the time. If I'm wrong I'm the first to admit it. But I don't think I should say sorry for saying nice things about you or anyone else.
You don't have to explain your relationship with Motown, I am glad that you have it. I was only using it as an example.
I don't think you should apologize for saying something nice. I just wondered if her feelings might not bear some truth. Often there is a seed of truth in our impressions of others, even if they are not complete truth. If there is no seed of truth in the suggestion that someone disagreeing with Cat might not make you more fond of them, then you don't owe her an apology... but then this is between you and Cat. I don't factor in at all so I'll let you two work it out, I only wanted to offer a perspective if it helped.
Well, I've said it repeatedly that I would not take or attempt to take your ideas away from you if you say they make you a better person. I have a good relationship with many believers and have never attempted to convert them on a personal level.
I find it interesting that you guys give each other props and kudos all the time, but when a Atheists gives the same to a Theist it's suddenly thought of as suspect and part of some dark plot. I do understand that that's part of your indoctrination, but it is really not fair to your fellow human beings.
This character assassination is rather troubling if you ask me.
Chapter 5, page 12, paragraph 3 in The Book of Indoctrination. "Whenever a non believer is kind to any believer, it is to be considered suspect and the believer must immediately confront the Atheist concerning his questionable action."
And the squabbles I've seen you in look mutual to me. What's your point? You say you don't get involved if both people are rude, but you go back later and quote mine the conversation so you can use it as proof that atheists "attack" believers, regardless of how those believers are behaving. I'm sorry, but your double standard is ludicrous coming from someone with a psychological degree, and the condescending diatribes seem a bit much. You most certainly have ridiculed me and many others. You can say you haven't, but to quote from your posts "the evidence to the contrary is clear for all to see".
Holy Crap, you are still not understanding and attempting to make me look like a monster. I don't believe your God exists especially as you think he does. I don't believe your God is a child murderer, I know the texts says he is and feel the text is juxtaposed to the God you feel you love.
Sorry, but the God you love doesn't exist and the conflicting, contrasting text is evidence of his none existence.
Let me ask a question, because I'm genuinely curious.
Short of giving believers every concession off the bat and rolling over, admitting that believers were right about everything and pretending to convert, what is it that believers want from atheists?
It seems like no matter what we do, we are somehow at fault. If we try to talk about Scripture, we are told that without the "spirit" we're incapable of understanding it, but if we don't try to talk about Scripture, we're told that we just need to read it.
We're told that without an education in theology, we're a waste of time, but if we get an education and mention it, we're accused of being arrogant and criticized for not getting the "right" one or it was clearly wrong.
If we do our own research, we're accused of not knowing what we're taking about, but if we quote other research, we're accused of being biased.
When we speak respectfully and intelligently, we're accused of being insincere and pretentious, when we criticize the belief, we're accused of persecuting the believer.
These conversations are becoming more and more meaningless if you are unsatisfied regardless of what you get. Believers expect to be treated as an individual and not lumped in with other believers, but atheists are referred to in a lump a large majority of the time.
Believers argue with us about what being an atheist even IS, but if we do the same, we're arrogant, uninformed and rude. What is it you want from us? (Universal you)
We're not going to convert without some kind of verifiable evidence. The Bible is not evidence, it is a claim - and half the time we seem to know it more fluently than many believers do. It's frustrating, understandably. Probably for both sides. I'm just curious.
Ok, so all I've read was a few posts between Cat and Rad. I don't know what Cat is suggesting with the "shut out" thing. I haven't shut out anyone in anyway. I'm still the same obnoxious person Ive always been... running around telling jokes and loving God in the meantime.
I don't know why Rad likes me better all of a sudden, but that's kind of him nonetheless.
So, about shutting ppl out... IDK, did I disagree with something a Christian said? Im sure that's all together possible, we all have our own minds, just as Atheists, but that doesn't mean I don't still love my bros and sis's in Christ. I love the Atheists too, though sometimes I can get hurt or angry, 'cause (surprise) I'm 100% human. I'm trying to sin less, that doesn't make me sinless.
I don't know why anyone's even interested in me right now... I was off running amok on other threads, so I still don't know what I did right or wrong, but I'm still the same me. Doing WAY better than when I first met you all, but still struggling with some tough issues.
How weird that this post falls in the middle of this thread, but I just feel like I missed something and I don't know what.
Actually, at first I had no idea who she was talking about. It's a sad day when someone get uptight when someone gives someone respect.
Who me? Did I get uptight? I honestly just don't know what anyone's talking about... but don't stress over it. I'm just going to sneak out the back door. Just pretend I was never here.
It was a simple shout-out, as one labeled it (rather than shut-out, which would be much more extreme) at a time recently when you were frustrated or upset with several Christians as well as a non-Christian forum friend. Not really such a big deal. BUT Rad Man's response has been to turn nice toward you since / because of this occurrence in much the same way he suddenly became "fond" of Jane when she said she wasn't a Christian (which you called him on). While I have full confidence in your standing in the Lord, I don't care for his tactics, and sometimes I feel compelled to bring to light what appears to be going on "in the shadows". Though I don't have concerns about your salvation because I know it's secure, I am concerned when certain people become friendly with my brothers or sisters for the wrong reasons, such as to encourage the speaking against Christians, which they themselves LOVE to engage in.
But if you see it as a tactic, it is a non issue. If he were a brother, you could offer a rebuke of some sort, but he is a non believer. He does not follow your rules or share your faith. It is just one of those things you have to let go of. It is neither here nor there b/c it is a behavioral choice. How can he be held to the same standard you would hold a brother to? He has no god.
I suppose it was most about the threat of it.
Anyway, I do encourage people to higher standards (avoidance of taunting and ridiculing, for example)regardless of their faith or lack thereof. I think in some ways to say they can't be held to certain standards because they're not people of faith is disrespectful to them. As a people we're moving toward greater empathy and greater intolerance of taunting and such, and I think it's important to address these particular matters regardless.
Thank you Beth. I've been attempting to say something similar, and I agree.
Someone being nice to someone else is sinister to you? Weird.
See Beth, I'm being forbidden to be nice to you and you are being told to be careful of my intentions, as if you are unable to make up your own mind or form opinions.
For the record I've always been nice and concerned for Jane. I've made real friends with many of the Christians in these forums and I've never discussed religion with them outside of these forums unless we were discussing these forums. I've had years of discussions with Beth and wouldn't dream of changing her beliefs as she has said they make her a better person. But I'll still discuss them in appropriate forum.
I do not work in the shadows and rather dislike your implications.
I think I'm done here as we are no longer discussing anything of interest.
JM - Most of the Christians on here, including me, do not have as our aim to ridicule any of your beliefs, especially beliefs that are very personal and important to you. You've acknowledged that you think this legitimate behavior and you engage in it. What you and others are generally offended at from me or other Christians here is our beliefs themselves, which come from the Word of God. The very idea that there is but one God and some have met him offends you. And it goes from there.
When you ridicule God it's often worse to us than you ridiculing our mother or children who we love dearly, because we love God most dearly of all and have an intimate, personal relationship with him. When you ridicule our faith, you ridicule that which is most important to us.
Ridicule and taunting (even indirect forms that avoid bans) by anyone in any form and in any manner are damaging psychologically. The comparison to emotional partner abuse was to demonstrate that we can be concerned about milder forms of a behavior while recognizing and appreciating that there exist even more serious forms. No one is attempting to compare the greater forms of persecution with the lesser forms. Yet the verbal forms are damaging and should not be tolerated, regardless of their lesser status. I'm sorry if insisting on this destroys some of the fun for those who delight in ridicule and mocking.
When you assert that your faith and your god specifically is true over all others with no proof outside of your own personal experience, you ridicule mankinds capacity for logic and reason as well as insult thousands of other religions.
A way to avoid ridicule and mocking on both sides? Stop asserting your beliefs as fact.
Simple. Doesnt mean you have to stop talking about god though.
I would not pour my life into a theory. I would not put my faith into something I didn't feel sure of. No one takes a leap of faith unless they believe. Otherwise, they are simply suicidal.
It's interesting that the Muslims, jews and a host of others have taken the same leap of faith and they also feel sure.
Right, and that is my point. You'd be a fool to give your life to something you didn't think was fact. He is asking us to claim it is not fact. I believe God is fact. To say otherwise, would make me a liar. Should I lie about my convictions to please him? Is he willing to do the same for me?
But all those other people have a different version of God and what God is. Hindus think there are thousands of Gods and have taken that leap of faith. Muslims believe Jesus was just a prophet like Mohammad and have taken that leap of faith. The jews think jesus was a fraud and have taken that leap of faith. Therefore your leap of faith is rendered just like theres as they are as convicted in their faith as you are.
They are just as faithful if not more than you are. Does that mean they must be correct as well?
Just so you know, i have never denied that a god exists. What i have denied is that a specific god exists over all others due to lack of evidence.
In a resonable debate, both sides present facts in order to justify their beliefs. When one side neglects to do so, consistently, but asserts that their belief is true, it is no longer a debate.
I believe i have asked you in the past for proof of your faith, not in this thread though. Each and every time i ask a believer of god the same question, it is the same answers. Its all based on faith and nothing concrete. That's not the problem though, the problem is the assertion that your beliefs are fact when no one can prove as such. If you havent realized it yet...thats predominantly the core of any argument a theist is likely to have with an atheist.
If you wish to avoid arguements, then stop asserting your beliefs as fact unless you can prove they are with actual evidence. There is nothing wrong with saying "I believe this to be true", but there is everything wrong with saying "I know this to be true" with nothing to show for it outside personal experiences. One is presented as an opinion to others while still remaining fact to yourself, while the others is arrogantly claiming fact and denying all others that claim similar truths.
Thought i had made that clear from get go.
I believe my faith to be fact. I didn't obey you... I hope you can make peace with that.
...umm....did you read that whole comment?
That part specifically?
I surely did. I responded to your original post quite a ways back. I don't know what we are still discussing. There is nothing left to say.
Im done with the evasion and dishonesty of this thread. Fun while it lasted. Gudnight
I've got all kinds of game consoles in the house. I've no idea how to work them, but once in a while I'm allowed to give it a try. I'm not bad at the racing games, but it's a good thing I was never called to war because I'm the first guy to get shot every time.
Yeah... it's weird right? How we let our sons and daughters play at war.
It's pretty realistic. I wonder if they are suffering sorts of trauma b/c of it.
I think they understand that it's a game. Once in a while make them watch a movie about war and it's horrors and it'll put things in perspective. Only my youngest plays those kinds of games and he's the most passive person imaginable. I have a video of him playing with and loving a ladybug when he was about four that would make you cry. It's available on my Facebook page if you want a look see. I know you know where to find me. His older brother in the video was not showing any compassion, but he now has a heart of gold.
My two sons play... call of duty. One is kind of serious and intense, yet funny, oddly enough. and the other has a giant cotton candy heart. how old is your cotton candy kid?
15. Here is a few drawing his older brother did of him yesterday. His older brother is rather talented.
Yes he is talented... very much so.
My cotton candy kid is 15 also.
Thanks, he had a summer job doing these and improved dramatically. He finishes one in 10-15 minutes.
I bet it takes food a long time to get to their stomachs.
Wow! Since he's that skilled and can make them that fast and effortlessly, he might really go far with this!
Fantastic that you feel so sure of it and that it gives you comfort.
But again, this falls within the realm of your personal experiences, not any definiable proof you can give to a random person on the street and instantly convert.
Otherwise there would only be one religion and one denomination of said religion.
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