Is it such a bad thing? In the book of Mathew 13 in the Bible, Jesus mentions,
47 "The kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind.
48 Which when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down and gathered the good vessels, but cast the bad away.
49 So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from the among the just."
Why do we ignore or resist this doctrine by not living accordingly and teaching our children that one must do what is right and just
and not what is wicked and unjust?
Wouldn't it solve a lot of problems in the world to do what is good for the sake of one's own salvation
... in the final analysis?
"Why do we ignore or resist this doctrine by not living accordingly and teaching our children that one must do what is right and just
and not what is wicked and unjust?"
Because we don't assume a fable from the distant is actually true? Because right and just, wicked and unjust, vary by culture?
"Wouldn't it solve a lot of problems in the world to do what is good for the sake of one's own salvation
... in the final analysis?"
Have you stopped beating your wife? The question is nonsensical as it assumes something that isn't true - the idea that there IS "salvation" to be had.
50 "And shall cast them into the furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and the gnashing of teeth."
Even I did not want to add Mathew 13, 50 because the teaching is so gruesome to contemplate.
And yet, who would do the wicked things they do or contemplate doing, if they knew their eventual fate?
... and wouldn't they study more closely in regards to what truly/actually
IS "WICKED" ?
I think you have to understand many people who do things you, or I, might classify as wicked by biblical definition don't see that as wicked. Sometimes what you might classify as wicked is a reaction to an interaction with someone who considers their actions not wicked.
You are going to have to define wicked. All the way around. It's more a state of mind than an action. I say many people who deem themselves righteous are in a wicked state of mind. I would think that is just as bad, if not worse, than someone who does something wicked. Because the person who did something wrong can repent much more easily than a person who claims moral superiority.
If you cannot look at how your actions negatively affect others, if you justify hatred toward your fellow man as cosmic understanding, you've missed the point of Jesus's ministry. You can't truly fear God if you think you are God.
There are varying concepts of “wickedness” among cultures and religions – what is wicked in the eyes of an orthodox Jew or Muslim is wonderful to an orthodox Christian or Hindu. The reverse scenario is also true.
Nonetheless, I think there is a basic instinct of right and wrong in every person. For example, someone like Rudolf Hoss, who was responsible for the deaths of 2.5 million people in Auschwitz, felt all along that something was not right. Same thing with the appearance of so many terrorists – do they not feel somewhere inside that their actions violate an interior law?
"Nonetheless, I think there is a basic instinct of right and wrong in every person."
Yes, there is - the Golden Rule. It is present in nearly all (or just all) religions and philosophies. It is also very commonly twisted completely out of shape as an excuse to not follow it.
But beyond that single (largely ignored) precept, there is no universal set of morality. Murder, human sacrifice, infanticide, cannibalism, slavery, witchcraft, rape; all have been practiced somewhere, somewhen, as perfectly acceptable. Some were even condoned in Christian or other scripture.
Prostitution, alcohol, "immodest" dress, child/spouse abuse, racism/sexism, homosexuality, forced physical mutilation; all are practiced, or not, according to local notions of right and wrong.
I’m speaking of conscience, which though informed by precepts like the Golden Rule, is more inbuilt. May it be deformed and deafened, such as in the cases you mentioned? For sure, especially if an entire culture practices it. Eventually it feels normal as may be seen with many Nazis. Somewhere beneath it all, though, I believe the sense of right and wrong persists in all persons except perhaps psychopaths.
Yes, a conscience. But what a conscience finds right or wrong is trained not born, and that comes from the culture it is in.
No, those things listed do not indicate a deformed or deafened conscience; they indicate a culture different than ours. Again, what is right and wrong is different in every culture, except for the mostly ignored Golden Rule. That doesn't make all but yours deformed - it makes them different.
True, cultures vary and practices become normal with time, but perhaps a group mentality has prevailed. In my opinion, conscience is inborn then trained, if parents or guardians are doing their job. Even before official training, babies have an innate aptitude for right and wrong as this study indicates...
https://medicalxpress.com/news/2010-05- … onths.html
Or did the babies choose the thing they thought would help them get what they want?
But if babies are born with morality built in they wouldn't lie. They wouldn't grab toys from other kids. They wouldn't hit other kids.
And all cultures would have the same basic morality set...something we know is not true.
My dog did something over and over after I yelled and yelled at her not to do it. Was my dog immoral?
No, just hungry for the tidbits she could smell in the trash.
Wilderness - Yes, babies take awhile to reach maturity. Does that eradicate the possibility of a basic moral instinct? Despite differences in cultural perceptions, though, I think there is a universal sense that unjust murder is wrong, for example. After all, we see a worldwide scorn of terrorists, because we recognize the injustice of their actions. Is that simply a trained awareness?
In any case, I suppose we will have to agree to disagree on this matter, because neither of us can really prove our point satisfactorily.
Can we at least agree on this: the need for conscience formation in children? Also, that this formation should include a basic understanding of the Golden Rule: “Do to others as you want them to do to you.”
"I think there is a universal sense that unjust murder is wrong,"
I think you are right, for I've never heard of any culture where unrestrained killing of people of that culture is considered right.
At the same time I can only think you are right if the culture, not you, gets to define what an "unjust" killing is. As soon as you demand that only your definition is the right one and all peoples agree with it the whole thing falls apart for there is no universal agreement on the "rightness" of anything at all.
The terrorists, for instance; do you really believe that those terrorists consider their actions "wrong" and believe their god will hate them for their actions? Do you really believe that the millions of parents in China that killed their female babies did so under the theory that it was "wrong"? Do you believe that the Church, operating the dungeons of the Inquisition, did so believing it was wrong?
You cannot simply declare that your concepts of right and wrong are the "correct" ones and everyone in the world, deep down, agrees with you because they are born with that knowledge. A quick glance around, or even a shred of history, shows that to be false for both historical and modern people have failed miserably in behaving according to what we consider right and wrong.
Yes, children must be taught right from wrong (they need a conscience). And that teaching must conform pretty will with the cultural norms of the society they live in. If the morals of their neighborhood require covering the body with cloth, for instance, then they cannot be taught it is OK to go naked into the world, for they shall surely suffer as a result if they do.
In the first place, I’ve nowhere declared that my concepts of right and wrong are correct. Nor do I believe everyone should conform to a single standard. As an example, I learned how to paint icons when I was young. I pray before icons, as do many Christians. If I were a Muslim, this would be heterodox behavior. Who is right in God’s eyes? I can see the beauty of the Muslim’s conception in this regard, even though I don’t follow it.
On the other hand, I stand on my declaration…unjust killing is wrong and people know it, unless they are psychopaths or the society around them conditioned their conscience to believe otherwise. It’s possible to have a warped conscience. This is what I observe in terrorists, for example. If societies, especially parents, condition their babies and children to extremist views, then they are bending consciences in the wrong direction. It’s like someone forming a tree into a weird shape when it naturally desires to take a beautiful shape.
I’ve wondered how accountable terrorists are before God, for instance. Does God overlook their crimes because society twisted their conscience from the beginning? Or, does He know they have violated the so-called natural law that He wrote on their hearts?
"In the first place, I’ve nowhere declared that my concepts of right and wrong are correct."
No, but nowhere have I seen where any other concept is right, either. All of your examples of what is right appear to come from your own conscience, without regard to what anyone else might think or believe.
"Nor do I believe everyone should conform to a single standard."
Then I'm getting lost, as everything you've said indicates you think we are born with our morals and that only one set is actually right.
"On the other hand, I stand on my declaration…unjust killing is wrong and people know it"
Was it "unjust" to kill a misbehaving slave? An immodestly dressed woman, or a girl that went to school? Was it "unjust" to kill someone wearing two types of cloth or sassing their parents? All done in the name of "right".
For that statement to be discussed you have to define what "unjust" means, and to every peoples in every country and eon.
"It’s possible to have a warped conscience. This is what I observe in terrorists, for example."
Why? Why is it warped? Because they don't agree with you? I'm not following the train of thought here; first you say you don't have all the answers then you say that those with a different set of answers is warped.
No reason to wonder what God thinks, for there is no indication there IS a god (any god). Likewise, saying that a god has written a "natural law on their hearts" makes no sense at all, for it, too, can neither be shown to be true nor is it common to all cultures; if it happened then different laws were written on different hearts.
Bede, it continues to come down the the same thing; you claim that all people have the same set of morality that you do, and if they don't it is because they are warped (read: "wrong"). Now you've added that a god has impressed those morals, as a "natural law" onto every heart, but that too is demonstrably false as it varies with culture.
The Golden Rule may (very loosely) be considered a natural law, as man evolved as a social creature and it is necessary to get along with the rest of that society. Reject that "law" and you will never benefit from the people around you, so it could be considered, in some part, to have evolved with us and thus be a natural law.
But that's about it: only those morals that support and aid in reproducing the species can be considered either natural or universal, and that list is exceedingly short. It boils down to the Golden Rule, which covers nearly all of our interactions with other people.
I agree with everything you said, Dan. Those claiming to know what a god wants are merely projecting what their own ideals are. Nothing more..
True. But worse is that so many people become unwilling to set aside cultural training and really look at history and even other contemporary cultures. That ability dies as the belief in a god that has decided right and wrong for everyone comes into being in far too many.
Dan –While I can see your point, the concept of natural law/conscience is too much of a universal phenomenon to dismiss altogether.
Consider: virtually all religions and ancient philosophies have some notion of it; “There is indeed a law, right reason, which is in accordance with nature; existing in all, unchangeable, eternal. Commanding us to do what is right, forbidding us to do what is wrong.” (Cicero, De Re Publica)
Nonetheless, I perceive we’re going around in circles, so I may have to bow out of this discussion.
Many believe that conscience comes from soul and is inborn. They also believe that there are good souls and bad souls.
There are no bad souls. There are misguided souls with bad character developed during many lifetimes, but the soul itself is not bad.
Where did you get your metaphysical training?
You are speaking of the spirit that is a part of the creator or what you call God. The soul is different from the spirit, a lower level, yet not physical. The soul is developed by the human, and you are correct that it is a product of many lifetimes. If the soul gets on a whole line of "bad character," as you put it, like Hitler or Genghis Khan, it develops badly and becomes inherently bad. Like a rotten egg. Would you say that a rotten egg has only "rotten character"? "That there are no bad rotten eggs?"
God created the angels good; by their own choice, some became demons.
Who tempted them then? The only one left--according to Xtians--is god.
God didn’t tempt the angels but gave them a test to evaluate their fidelity and humility. The devil tempts us to lure us away from God. In either case, a choice is involved.
Now why would an omniscient creature test anything at all? It already knows all the answers!
I do not think he is testing us. As you ask, why would be test us?
He said go, procreate and live your lives, after the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He is not interested in testing us. He is interested in us following our wills and eventually loving Him enough to go "home" in Spirit.
He gave us freedom within boundaries. The boundaries are to be strictly followed which is why fear was instilled into man regarding wickedness and injustice throughout the entire Bible.
My question is, are the boundaries so bad?
We would all agree one should be just and one should not be wicked.
What boundaries are "too much"? or too extreme.
I know one: God said not to lay with someone of one's own sex.
There you go!
God also said if you rape someone pay their dad 20 silver shickles and she's your wife. There you go!
He tested them? What were the questions asked of them, if you don't mind my asking? Just a synopsis will be satisfactory..
I say the soul is the spirit. The spirit/person becomes in the habit of being led by true self-soul/spirit and/or illusive self-ego according to soul evolution through use of will.
My understanding is spirit = soul = true self
(Spirit = God)
Its all one, but we are small bits (spirit) of the whole (Spirit.)
I think you are correct. My father was an atheist, yet he lived by the Golden Rule. As far as the Christian concept of salvation, there are religious beliefs far older than Christianity that believe that the creator loves his creations and that they don't need to be "saved."
People who don't follow The Golden Rule have no fear of God.
I would never follow a god that says I have to fear "him". I believe in God's love and not wrath. When people say that their God is a wrathful god, I tell them I won't follow a god that isn't loving. Then they say oh yes, he is a loving god if you do do what he says. Then I tell them, your god is a two-faced psychopath, and I won't follow him either. My creator is a loving god. The New Testament was written by Rome, and it twists Jesus' teachings around to their own uses.
Again, +10000000000000000000000000000000000000000000, many traditional, conservative, & fundamentalist religionists believe that God is/should be a wrathful, punishing, & vengeful God to be...…..feared.
Dear GM – God is definitely not all-wrathful. Consider the many manifestations of His goodness and mercy, such as the Good Shepherd and the parable of the prodigal son, etc. Take a look at this Rembrandt which in I saw St. Petersburg some years back…
You're either saying that god is dead (the good shephard) or that a fictional tale told long ago (and known to be fictional when first told) indicates God's kindness. Followed by an extremely anthropomorphic painting derived from the imagination of a painter long ago.
And THIS is what you propose should be accepted as evidence that your god is not all-wrathful? It fails on every count.
If it were a photo taken by the viewer this may mean something, but a painting by someone who lived long after Jr. supposedly existed, isn't worth much except as a rendering by a famous artist.
Yes, if we naturally know what is good and bad, right and wrong, wicked or unjust, perhaps the fear of God is unnecessary.
What do we do to protect what is innate?
Is it just providing love and taking away fear?
No, Parents must model what is right and wrong.
Adults must model according to a conscious knowing.
It hurts the soul of the child, unconsciously, when the adults in charge run amok.
Adults must possess a conscious recognition of what they know,(within) to be wicked and not wicked.
It would solve major problems to do what is prophesied to do and repent towards correcting ourselves to teach the children how to be corrected to be able to do what is just and good.
Who decides what is just and good? You? Me? Hitler? The Pope, or some other Christian VIP?
God. God knows what is good for us. He created us. For instance He
(according to The Old Testament) says we should not "lay with animals". Why? because, (I would surmise,) we are higher than the animals and it would hurt our spiritual evolution toward the light of God, (according to my understanding based on sources other than the Bible.)
(Gross as that is to us in this day, it says it right there in the Bible that man did this in the past.) There are many specific things we should not do listed in The Old Testament.
In all reality, the Bible is a very confusing book. Some things make perfect sense, some do not.
"(according to the Old Testament...)
Jesus said he came to fulfill the law. In other words, the OT became obsolete. We were to follow the teachings of Jesus whose basic teachings can be summed up as "Love."
Besides, the God or gods of the OT were just space aliens anyway. Anyone would be foolish to take them at their word.
If I were God, would I want all to fear or love me?
On the one hand, if I’m only terrifying, then all will despair. On the other hand, if I’m a namby-pamby, sweetie-pie, then all will be presumptuous. They will turn to the golden calves and have no regard for my commands.
Therefore, I think a balanced picture is best.
I asked you about the tests god gave the angels as you claimed. Did you miss the question or was simply making the claim up? You don't get by with such claims without being called on it, Bede babe.
Sorry Randy - I didn’t forget. I’ve given it some thought and done some research. There are a number of theologians across the centuries who propose that the angelic test involved an option of humble obedience or rebellion. There’s no official teaching though, as scripture is mostly veiled on the question.
A certain mystic named Mary of Agreda said that the test was this: God gave the angels foreknowledge of the Incarnation, that is, God would become man. Furthermore, the angels would have to serve and adore the God-man. Lucifer rebelled at this notion because of the superior intelligence of the angelic nature to human nature.
There’s more to it but that’s all I can say for now.
That's all you can say because you don't even know who wrote the old novel, Bede. Common men compiled the book by throwing some of the old stories out and keeping those they agreed with. There was no guidance from the god you claim and no questions put to the angels. Just wishful thinking on your part...
Old goat herders didn't have a clue about the factual world they lived in.
There were a number of texts floating around in the early days of the church, such as the Gospel of Thomas and the Apocalypse of Peter. Collectively, we know them as the apocrypha. Anyway, to avoid confusion among the faithful, the church fathers made an official canon of approved texts – those they believed were inspired texts. This took place around AD 393 in Africa. There were several councils, though.
As far as common men composing the texts – in a way, you are correct. Many of them were lowly shepherds and fishermen. I personally think they were inspired instruments…no one will coerce you feel likewise, not even God.
"Those they believed were inspired texts"
Of course they did, their livelihood depended on it. This was the reason Mary Magdalene was depicted as a harlot instead of Jesus' girlfriend. It just didn't fit their idea of him being mortal and a god at the same time.
At any rate, I'm not vouching for a god of any sort as there may be millions of them, but I doubt seriously there's only one. Why would there be? Were there many gods at one time? Did your god kill all the rest?
You're so sure there is one god you're trying to convince others to believe the same, but what if you're wrong and piss the wrong god off at--not only you--but the people you've convinced you're right?
You see, I don't wish that kind of weight on my shoulders, but you can have at it if you feel the need.
Ah yes, I believe in one God as I believe the inspired texts! Muslims also believe in one God, but don’t see Him as three persons. There’s something for you to gnaw on – One God yet three persons!
See, there's at least 100 gods including the ancient Greek, Roman, as well as, New World gods to consider. None are worthy of being worshipped in my opinion, but have at it, and try to convince others of your own beliefs.
Unless that is, you want to earn brownie points or something. The alternative is to awful to consider if you're wrong.
... so the options are: believing in one god, many gods, or no god.
How about one prevailing spirit which is in each of us.
if this is the case, then allowing abortion is wrong based on the fact that we are rejecting a child/creation of Spirit, not created by you, but God Himself.
it is injustice to start a opportunity for life and then stop it. It is rejection. It is a lack of love and it is causing suffering to an innocent soul who is waiting and hoping to reincarnate.
well, I am allowed to have and state my opinion. No one has to argue with me... but of course this is a public forum. So have at it.
Nope, it's your opinion no matter how wacky...
Yes, you are allowed to have your opinion and voice it. But don't expect anyone to sit idly when your opinion is put into law. I'm not talking about the abortion issue in particular, but that too. I am still referring to your homosexual comment.
Why must one believe any of those choices? What happened to "I don't have enough information to make an informed decision."?
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