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Study shows Christianity is set to become a minority faith as soon as 2060

  
Via:  CB  •  2 years ago  •  293 comments

By:   Alex Collett

Study shows Christianity is set to become a minority faith as soon as 2060
According to the study, damaging sex abuse scandals and cover-ups in the Catholic, Southern Baptist, Mormon and other churches are seeing people drift away from Christianity across much of the developed world.

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Christianity is set to become a minority faith in the US as soon as 2060 as millions embrace secularism, study reveals

In its 'Reorganized Religion' study, Pew Research Center reveals the number of U.S. adults identifying as Christian has dropped from 90 percent in the 1990s to 64 percent now, and will likely decrease into a minority faith over the coming decades.

The findings show the share of Christians is set to fall to as low as 35 percent by 2070.

The decline is due to Christians switching to 'nones' - a secular mishmash of atheists, agnostics and those with no religious identity - which is set to grow from about 30 percent nowadays to as much as 52 percent by 2070.

The percentage of other adherents of faith, such as Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists is set to double in share mostly driven by immigration, the study also revealed.

According to the study, damaging sex abuse scandals and cover-ups in the Catholic, Southern Baptist, Mormon and other churches are seeing people drift away from Christianity across much of the developed world.

Christians often being among the most outspoken critics of progressive policies on gay marriage and abortion are other reasons why people are turning away from the faith.

Bob Smietana, the author of 'Reorganized Religion', said Christianity's decline may imperil "faith-based institutions that play a central part in community life', which, he added, could be 'weakened or disappear".

They would include the "food pantries at churches, the shelters, or robust faith-based disaster relief" efforts that assist the needy in the U.S. and abroad, Smetana wrote on social media.

Such Christian charities as Catholic Relief Services and the Salvation Army assist millions in the U.S. and beyond, arranging everything from food parcels to adoption schemes.


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CB
Professor Principal
1  seeder  CB    2 years ago

I 'hate' to see this happening, though by then I will have aged considerably.  But, it is clear, that the hypocrisies, meddling in secular affairs, and personal/group ambitions are 'killing' Christian faith.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @1    2 years ago

But, it is clear, that the hypocrisies, meddling in secular affairs, and personal/group ambitions are 'killing' Christian faith.

Maybe people are just growing out of iron mythologies. 

Yahweh may soon go the way of Santa Claus and the Easter bunny.  Sure you talk about them, but grownups know they're not real.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
1.1.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    2 years ago

I hear you. Now to be clear, I am a Christian for a set of reasons which I feel strongly are spiritual. But there is no denying this: I 'knew' this day would come if/when/now evangelical Christians persist in being 'unbridled' in schemes and deceit.

Thus, while I hate this for true believers, it is 'just desserts' being laid out for stubborn, sanctimonious, disingenuous, self-righteous people who try to take over other people's lives under a facade of religious expression.

Right now, I question not my own faith, but the system of belief of others who can so callously and arrogantly lie, cheat, and steal from others. I almost want to 'run' from association with them in disgust.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.2  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1    2 years ago

I find great solace in my faith, I happen to be a Roman Catholic, a practicing Catholic … I found that, for me, the externalities of my faith bring me a sense of peace. … My son died, and he had this set of rosaries on and I’ve been wearing it since and I will wear it till I die. … I’m not saying when I pray the rosary God’s gonna help me — it’s just solace. President Biden

“When I get up in the morning, I meditate,” Cory Booker said. “Actually, I pray on my knees, and then I meditate.”

“I think it’s unfortunate [the Democratic Party] has lost touch with a religious tradition that I think can help explain and relate our values. At least in my interpretation, it helps to root a lot of what it is we do believe in, when it comes to protecting the sick and the stranger and the poor, as well as skepticism of the wealthy and the powerful and the established.”  Pete Buttigieg

“I’m actually really active in the Senate Prayer Breakfast. I chaired the National Prayer Breakfast.  The Senate Prayer breakfast is actually a really important thing and nobody knows what is talked about  – liberals go there I promise – and it is a way for people to tell the stories about their lives and to able to have some common ground without people pointing fingers.  Faith is very important to me, it helped me get through my dad’s addiction. I think everyone should be able to practice whatever religion they want in this country. That’s the United States of America. Or not practice religion.  But for me that’s a very important part of my life.” Amy Klobuchar

Since these are indeed grownups, is their talk just political pandering?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
1.1.3  seeder  CB  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.2    2 years ago
“I think it’s unfortunate [the Democratic Party] has lost touch with a religious tradition that I think can help explain and relate our values. At least in my interpretation, it helps to root a lot of what it is we do believe in, when it comes to protecting the sick and the stranger and the poor, as well as skepticism of the wealthy and the powerful and the established.”  Pete Buttigieg

Please source this quote with a viewable reference. :)

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.4  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  CB @1.1.3    2 years ago

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
1.1.5  seeder  CB  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.4    2 years ago

Very well. I see it there. Thank you! :)

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.6  Ozzwald  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.2    2 years ago
I find great solace in my faith, I happen to be a Roman Catholic, a practicing Catholic … I found that, for me, the externalities of my faith bring me a sense of peace. … My son died, and he had this set of rosaries on and I’ve been wearing it since and I will wear it till I die. … I’m not saying when I pray the rosary God’s gonna help me — it’s just solace. President Biden

Congratulations. 

Children find great solace in the knowledge that Santa Claus will deliver them wonderful presents on December 25, it is good for them to feel that way.  It doesn't matter to them whether Santa is real or not, it is only when they get older and critical thinking convinces them that Santa is not real.  But until them, they will be content with their faith that Santa is real.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
1.1.7  JohnRussell  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.6    2 years ago

I'm sorry, but there have countless brilliant people, including eminent scientists , who have believed in God. It is a vast overstatement to claim that religious faith amounts to childlike thinking.  The truth is no one knows. 

If you can prove there is no God , let's hear it. 

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.8  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.6    2 years ago
Congratulations. 

For what?

You still haven't answered my questions, do you think that those Dem religious quotes represent political pandering?

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.9  Ozzwald  replied to  JohnRussell @1.1.7    2 years ago
I'm sorry, but there have countless brilliant people, including eminent scientists , who have believed in God.

So?  Doesn't make them right since not a single one of them can supply evidence to that existence.

It is a vast overstatement to claim that religious faith amounts to childlike thinking.

Why?  Children do not need evidence, they believe what their parents and others tell them to believe.  What is so different between god and Santa?  Both are entirely faith based.

The truth is no one knows.

So why would you put faith in something you just admitted you don't know?

If you can prove there is no God , let's hear it. 

1 - I've read many of your comments, and know you are an intelligent person, so you know it is impossible to prove a negative.

Plus, all my statements are my beliefs, and I do not believe in a god, and no one has ever been able to provide 1 single piece of evidence for me to change or even question that belief.

2 - You are the one claiming the existence of something, therefore burden of proof is on you to provide the evidence to that.

3 - Can you prove that Santa doesn't exist?

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.10  Ozzwald  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.8    2 years ago
Congratulations. 
For what?

For finding solace. 

If believing in iron age mythology helps you find inner peace, that is a good thing regardless of the truth behind the mythology.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.11  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.10    2 years ago
If believing in iron age mythology helps you find inner peace, that is a good thing regardless of the truth behind the mythology.

I'm a lifelong agnostic.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.12  Ozzwald  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.11    2 years ago
I'm a lifelong agnostic.

You're a practicing Catholic agnostic?

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.13  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.12    2 years ago

No, just agnostic.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.14  Ozzwald  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.13    2 years ago

No, just agnostic.

Now I'm confused.  You previously stated, " I find great solace in my faith, I happen to be a Roman Catholic, a practicing Catholic … ".

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.15  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.14    2 years ago
Now I'm confused.

Yes, you confused a President Biden quote for me.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
1.1.16  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.15    2 years ago

Such confusion could have been avoided had you used the block quote feature for your quotes, or lacking that, quotation marks for the Biden quote.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
1.1.17  Ozzwald  replied to  Drinker of the Wry @1.1.15    2 years ago

Yes, you confused a President Biden quote for me.

As Sandy-2021492 pointed out, PUNCTUATION.

There are multiple ways to show quotations in these comments.  You chose to use none.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
1.1.18  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @1.1.17    2 years ago

Thanks, it required repeating,

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
2  JBB    2 years ago

Jesus would probably not be a Christian anymore...

Fundamentalism is a plague upon all of our houses!

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
2.1  Texan1211  replied to  JBB @2    2 years ago
Jesus would probably not be a Christian anymore

Jesus was a Jew.

So, you are technically correct, except for that whole "anymore" stuff.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2  Gsquared  replied to  JBB @2    2 years ago

Jesus was a Jew his entire life, and the disciples who actually knew Jesus also remained as Jews for all of their lives.

It was Saul of Tarsus, known to Christians as St. Paul, who never knew Jesus, who started the Christian thing going after he had a "vision" on the road to Damascus.  Probably because of some mushrooms he ate.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2    2 years ago

G', is the point here Jesus a Jewish man, knew Gentiles would not be under the Law? And, subsequently, a different designator was appropriate?

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.2  Gsquared  replied to  CB @2.2.1    2 years ago

Jesus primarily preached to Jews, although there is Biblical evidence of a few isolated instances of ministering to Gentiles.  He instructed his Apostles:  "Go not into the way of the Gentiles".

It would seem to be a matter of faith as to whether Jesus intended his ministry to reach the Gentile world.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.3  Ozzwald  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.2    2 years ago

Biblical evidence = oxymoron

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.4  Gsquared  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.3    2 years ago
Biblical evidence = oxymoron

Um, not exactly.  Are you aware that most historians accept that there was an historical Jesus, regardless of the question of divinity?

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
2.2.5  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.3    2 years ago

Exactly, if Jesus was a real person, where is the body?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.6  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.2    2 years ago
Matthew 10:5 
These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them: “Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans;

Matthew 12:21 
“And in His name the Gentiles will hope.”

Isaiah 49:6 
He says, “It is too small a thing that You should be My Servant
To raise up the tribes of Jacob and to restore the preserved ones of Israel;

I will also make You a light of the nations
So that My salvation may reach to the end of the earth .

Source:

My friend G', surely salvation extends beyond the singular nation of Israel in the 'promise,' even in these verses.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.7  Gsquared  replied to  CB @2.2.6    2 years ago
salvation extends beyond the singular nation of Israel

As I understand it, that is Christian doctrine.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.8  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.7    2 years ago

It is Isaiah and Matthew, both, doing the speaking and delivery. Neither men being Christians in their lifetimes. Yes?

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.9  Gsquared  replied to  CB @2.2.8    2 years ago

Yes, both were Jews.  Isaiah was, of course, a Jewish prophet who, according to the Bible, lived 600-700 years before Jesus.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.10  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.9    2 years ago

And both testaments writers prophesied gentiles ("nations") seeing salvation. :)

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
2.2.11  Gordy327  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.3    2 years ago

It's also circular reasoning 

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.12  Ozzwald  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.4    2 years ago
Are you aware that most historians accept that there was an historical Jesus, regardless of the question of divinity?

Are you aware that "Yeshua" was the equivalent to "John" as far as common names?  Your statement is the same as saying Spiderman exists because people named Peter exist.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.13  Ozzwald  replied to  Gordy327 @2.2.11    2 years ago
It's also circular reasoning

Yes. The bible uses itself as evidence to itself.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
2.2.14  Gordy327  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.13    2 years ago

Like I said, circular reasoning. A classic logical fallacy.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.15  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.12    2 years ago

Hi Ozzwald, do consider this: though "John" may be as common as "Ozzwald" can be eccentric (no offense intended), it is an insufficient argument to make that common usage dilutes or dissipates the life of an individual or the detail work written about him. Your comparison would be better served if you contested the historical existence of "the spiderman" or "the historical Jesus."

The "historical Jesus" a specific individual is who G' has asserted historians have given some consensus to his existence; not a "population" of Jesus'.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.16  Gsquared  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.12    2 years ago

Read the link I posted and take your argument up with the historians.

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.17  evilone  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.4    2 years ago

From your link, Flavius Josephus was the first to mention Jesus 94 years after Jesus would have died on the cross. Josephus Helonized his work to appeal to his audience. He omitted some stuff and spit shined some other stuff. There are also multiple version of the manuscript Antiquities of the Jews  found around Europe and the Middle East that were altered where many passage are not in other copies and passages that do not match the style of other parts of the book. Josephus would not have claimed Jesus as the Messiah making the whole book suspect. Most modern Greek scholars think it is partially authentic at best.

There was a Roman historian Tacitus who references "Chistus" and his execution by Pontius Pilate written c AD 116 is probably the best evidence, but is no way definitive.

The oldest parts of have no mention of Jesus, but the Talmud in later commentaries of the Germara could be considered evidence. Jesus is not mentioned by name, but there is talk of a virgin birth to the illegitimate son of a Roman soldier Panthera (the Greek work for virgin is parthenos) and the "miracles" as black magic. 

Mara bar Serapion wrote to his son while in a Roman prison about the death of "the wise king of the Jews" the dating of this letter is in dispute.

After this all the historical biblical scholars are all Christians like Greek scholar Eusebius Pamphilus who became bishop of Caesarea Maritima in AD 314. His prejudices are well known, but is called the Father of Church History. He was a trusted adviser to the Roman Emperor Constantine and also wrote Constantine's biography. 

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.18  Gsquared  replied to  evilone @2.2.17    2 years ago

I am not a Christian and I have no stake in the game.  However, when I was a student studying history at Berkeley a few decades ago, I knew several Ph. D. students in the field of intellectual history of the early Roman Empire, many of whom were Jewish, and they all concurred in the belief, common among historians, that there was an historical Jesus.  Other than that, and what I have read, I have no further knowledge, and it makes no difference to me anyways.

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.19  evilone  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.18    2 years ago

At one point in my adult life I was seriously contemplating becoming a Lutheran Paster (I am now a atheist). I've had a lot of time over the years to go down various internet rabbit holes. I find a myriad of subjects, including history, fascinating. I should have been an anthropologist... 

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.20  Gsquared  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.13    2 years ago
The bible uses itself as evidence to itself.

Historians use the Bible as some evidence of what they consider to be historical fact, the existence of a person named Jesus who gained notoriety in Jewish society, much as historians use Caesar's "Commentaries on the Gallic Wars" as some evidence that Caesar conquered Gaul. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
2.2.21  TᵢG  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.4    2 years ago
Are you aware that most historians accept that there was an historical Jesus, regardless of the question of divinity?

They hold that there was one or more individuals who likely lived and were the inspiration for the biblical accounts.

But the critical question for Christianity is Jesus' divinity.   And, next to that, a divine Jesus dying and resurrecting.   

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.22  Gsquared  replied to  evilone @2.2.19    2 years ago
I should have been an anthropologist... 

There is nothing stopping you from continuing to study and learn.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.23  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.15    2 years ago
Hi Ozzwald, do consider this: though "John" may be as common as "Ozzwald" can be eccentric (no offense intended), it is an insufficient argument to make that common usage dilutes or dissipates the life of an individual or the detail work written about him.

Understood, and I do not dispute the fact that someone name "Yeshua", probably existed at that time.  But again, pushing that argument is the same as saying Spiderman exists because someone named "Peter" exists.

Your comparison would be better served if you contested the historical existence of "the spiderman" or "the historical Jesus."

Except there is no "historical" Jesus, he exists only in the bible and other documents that reference that mention in the bible.  Outside the bible there are no other references to him.

The "historical Jesus" a specific individual is who G' has asserted historians have given some consensus to his existence; not a "population" of Jesus'.

No historians can provide any evidence of the existence of a "divine" Jesus.  They can only show that people by that name existed, and maybe that there was an historic Jesus that preached, nothing about any divinity.  So no evidence that they are talking the same person as the bible references.

Like I said, I can prove that Peters exist, I can show they exist in New York, I may even be able to prove that a few in New York have the last name of Parker.  But if any get thrown off a building, none will swing away on their webbing.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.24  Gsquared  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.21    2 years ago
the critical question for Christianity is Jesus' divinity.   And, next to that, a divine Jesus dying and resurrecting

As I said, I am not a Christian and I have no stake in the game.  I did, however, study a lot about the intellectual underpinnings of Christianity, since a large part of my emphasis as a student was the intellectual history of the early Roman Empire.  I wrote a study about the concept of the wandering of the soul in "The Confessions of St. Augustine" (for which I received an "A++ Excellent" from one the the leading professors of intellectual history at Berkeley), as well as studies on various other concepts including a well-received paper on syncretism and the cult of the sun god when I was an undergraduate enrolled in a graduate seminar.  Then, instead of following the professional academic path, I went to law school!

 
 
 
afrayedknot
Junior Quiet
2.2.25  afrayedknot  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.23    2 years ago

But if any get thrown off a building, none will swing away on their webbing.”

Tis the ‘tangled web’ we weave when discussing any religion…always man-made and thus inherently self-serving.

One thing to adhere to a religion, another to be spiritual…give me the spiritual every time. As spirituality is introspective, never intended to ask others to believe in a similar vein. 

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
2.2.26  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.23    2 years ago
Outside the bible there are no other references to him.

Jospehus’ Description of Jesus
3. (63) Now, there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, if it be lawful to call him a man, for he was a doer of wonderful works-a teacher of such men as receive the truth with pleasure. He drew over to him both many of the Jews, and many of the Gentiles. He was [the] Christ; (64) and when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross, those that loved him at the first did not forsake him, for he appeared to them alive again the third day, as the divine prophets had foretold these and ten thousand other wonderful things concerning him; and the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.

The Antiquities of the Jews, Book 18, Chapter 3
From The Works of Josephus,
translated by William Whiston
Hendrickson Publishers, 1987

Therefore, to scotch the rumour, Nero substituted as culprits, and punished with the utmost refinements of cruelty, a class of men, loathed for their vices, whom the crowd styled Christians.

Christ the founder of the name, had undergone the death penalty in the reign of Tiberius, by sentance of the procurator Pontius Pilate, and a pernicious superstition was checked for the moment, only to break out once more, not merely in Judea, the home of the disease, but in the capital itself, where all things horrible and shameful in the world collect and find a vogue’ (Tacitus, Annals of Imperial Rome, tr, M Grant (Harmonsdsworth: Penguin Classics, 1985), 15.44.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
2.2.27  TᵢG  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.24    2 years ago

Understood.   

Do you agree or disagree with the statement of mine that you quoted?

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.28  Gsquared  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.27    2 years ago

I would agree.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.29  Gsquared  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.23    2 years ago
there is no "historical" Jesus

Yet most professional historians disagree.

No historians can provide any evidence of the existence of a "divine" Jesus.

I'm not aware of any competent, recognized historian who claims to have such evidence.  Are you?

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.30  evilone  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.22    2 years ago
There is nothing stopping you from continuing to study and learn.

Only time... 

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.31  evilone  replied to  TᵢG @2.2.21    2 years ago
But the critical question for Christianity is Jesus' divinity.

This is where the rubber meets the road....

This was established by decree at the First Council of Nicaea in 325 AD.

In 431 the First Council of Ephesus called into question Mary's virgin birth and claiming Jesus must be 2 people - one divine and one human. Having Mary given birth to the human and could not be called Theotokos, or one who gives birth to God.

In 451 the Council of Chalcedon denied this line of questioning and excommunicated Nestorius (the Archbishop of Constantinople) for it and in all councils since chosen only to recognize the Nicaean Creed. It also broke apart the Church of the Eastern Roman Empire and established the primacy of Rome.

To me it looks like the divinity of Christ is a political statement.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.32  Ozzwald  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.29    2 years ago
Yet most professional historians disagree.

Let me rephrase, there is no historical divine Jesus.

I'm not aware of any competent, recognized historian who claims to have such evidence.  Are you?

Nope, which is why I said there are none.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.33  Ozzwald  replied to  evilone @2.2.31    2 years ago
To me it looks like the divinity of Christ is a political statement.

7d59a646-d06c-4830-b621-290de59d8c97.jpg

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.34  Gsquared  replied to  evilone @2.2.31    2 years ago
a political statement

It's pretty well-recognized that religion and politics are intimately entwined in most societies.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.35  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.16    2 years ago

A 'solid' link too! :)

I think what some critical thinkers strive for instinctively is some acknowledgement that since an idea/image/issue of God is entering history—God as God would not let it pass without equivalent reporting, pronouncements to an onlooking world, and 'fanfare.' Along that line of reasoning; were God to 'fond' over Jesus' day—there would not/could not be agreement to an ignominious death. 

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.36  evilone  replied to  CB @2.2.35    2 years ago
... what some critical thinkers strive for instinctively...

Just evidence of claims made. Nothing more, nothing less. That of course is opposite to edict of "For we live by faith, not by sight." Which I take as, "Stop asking questions and do as you're told." by those who wrote it.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.37  seeder  CB  replied to  evilone @2.2.36    2 years ago

I'm confused, Evilgenius: There has/is acknowledgement faith/belief is not necessarily 'air-tight.' Why digress into demanding faith to state what it by design can not? It is faith after all. At least as far as for those who are not impacted by faith. (I give credence to people of faith (or which I am one) who can attest to our living differently from what we used to do going forward as a type of evidence seen "in" our flesh. Of course, I am not speaking of persons who have a 'SAID' belief which produces no 'fruit' in and of itself!)

As for men/women who try to spin faith into a sort of "evidence" - that horse is dead already—by definition. Faith is what believers hold on to (and the 'abiding' power of Spirit-which is UNSEEN) in place of a physical body, or body of scientific or legal evidences.

To that end, why not just request/demand people of faith (religious expression) live up to the 'higher calling' of their beliefs and not dwell in the murky mire/bottom/lower decks of the same?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.38  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.23    2 years ago

I am confused. Your initial statement led me to consider you are concerned Jesus's existence (physically born of a woman named Mary and a father named Joseph) could not be anymore than a written fantasy. . However, that Jesus can exist, have said and discussed what is on record during his life (death at 33), been crucified. The "historical Jesus" of biblical record.  Is this the Jesus you contest?

Or, do you contest the historical record of Jesus' existence, based on the spiritual man/son whose narrative includes miracles and resurrection accounts?

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
2.2.39  devangelical  replied to  CB @2.2.38    2 years ago

uh, joe wasn't his dad...

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.40  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.23    2 years ago
Like I said, I can prove that Peters exist, I can show they exist in New York, I may even be able to prove that a few in New York have the last name of Parker.  But if any get thrown off a building, none will swing away on their webbing.

So. . . I take it you wish to see this specific Jesus for yourself?

Because you do not 'trust' (have faith in) others to have seen this Jesus of record and record his story in a book (or set of books). And that, because the scrolls/books of his 'day' were not scientific journals (where was the scientific community in that day)

Consider this:

Jesus lived a peasant's existence from an unremarkable birth; was never schooled as a Rabbi, was followed by 'rank and file' laborers, was confusing to  -  leading to hated by the leaders of his people, was not given any exceptional title, greeting, or seat at any table by the keepers of Jewish history in his time,  and yet of all the characters in the biblical book/s it is this Jesus whom is most remembered, esteemed, and holds a play in the heart of countless generations.

"Peter Parker" could be envious were he not a cartoon figure known by millions.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.41  seeder  CB  replied to  devangelical @2.2.39    2 years ago

Touché, Sir. Well-played. The "pinch-hitter" has arrived in great form too may I add.  :)

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
2.2.42  Gsquared  replied to  CB @2.2.35    2 years ago

Well, CB, isn't your stated position based on faith?  Not everyone has the type of faith that you, and others, do.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.43  seeder  CB  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.42    2 years ago

Yes, based on faith. But which position I state do you have in mind?  I don't quite grasp what the comment is conveying. And not sure if I answered it sufficiently. :)

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.44  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.38    2 years ago
Your initial statement led me to consider you are concerned Jesus's existence (physically born of a woman named Mary and a father named Joseph) could not be anymore than a written fantasy.

Correct, the jesus we are talking about, the biblical, divine jesus.  Or are you talking about some random guy that happened to be living at that time with the same name?

However, that Jesus can exist, have said and discussed what is on record during his life (death at 33), been crucified. The "historical Jesus" of biblical record.  Is this the Jesus you contest?

Yes, and you know it.  There is no evidence that the jesus of the bible existed.  Sure there is evidence that someone else with the same, common, name existed, but that is not who we are talking about.

Or, do you contest the historical record of Jesus' existence, based on the spiritual man/son whose narrative includes miracles and resurrection accounts?

There is no evidence of the "biblical" jesus.  Claiming that someone of the same name exists, therefore the biblical one exists is a ridiculous premise.

So take the evidence you have of the existence of Jesus, and provide the evidence that he was divine as described in the bible.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.45  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.44    2 years ago
So take the evidence you have of the existence of Jesus, and provide the evidence that he was divine as described in the bible.

I don't have to do this for you. It is not an obligation of faith to prove anything (friend) Ozzwald to anyone. As you know by now from my comments over the years, I don't impose my faith, personal it is, upon anybody. That it is personal is biblical too.

The Spirit comes to those who seek/knock/find God (though God is not far from anybody).

It is a mistake for somebody to try to 'force' you or someone else to come into this or any other faith against your will. I don't/won't care to make an attempt.

As for the Bible—"the Word"—it has altered the paths of countless lives, my own included. Some of those lives for good and inversely some for sordid gain (on the spectrum anything can be good/bad/abused). Its potency is what it is. It reads as it reads. Correspondingly, it changes lives as 'they' change.

Peace. :)

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.46  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.45    2 years ago
I don't have to do this for you. It is not an obligation of faith to prove anything (friend) Ozzwald to anyone.

Faith is for beliefs without any supporting evidence.

I don't impose my faith, personal it is, upon anybody.

You are the one that brought up your beliefs, and now you are the one that is refusing to provide any support of those beliefs.  If you're not trying to impose them, why bring them up and continue to argue about them?

The Spirit comes to those who seek/knock/find God (though God is not far from anybody).

Bull.  Gobbledegook, word salad meaning nothing.  It is 1 sentence away from faith healing.  

Faith healing = If you weren't healed it is because you didn't have enough faith.  But it is never god's fault just yours for your lack of faith.

It is a mistake for somebody to try to 'force' you or someone else to come into this or any other faith against your will.

It is a mistake to look at something with a clear mind and to examine all evidence, pro and con, before making a decision that will effect the rest of your life?

As for the Bible—"the Word"—it has altered the paths of countless lives, my own included.

And has probably caused the deaths of more people throughout history, than any other book ever. 

Its potency is what it is. It reads as it reads.

The bible supports slavery, rape, pedophilia, misogyny, genocide, and much much more.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.47  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.46    2 years ago

What part friend Ozzwald do you not understand that this article which talks about decreases and 'tamping down' of the Christian faith in this country suggests to you that I, personally, am using it as vehicle to exhort Christianity? There have been a series of other discussions that are 'weaved in' to this article by others with my consent or letting those threads be. There is not 'push' to promote religion coming from me.

Indeed, my main point for posting the article is people have exasperated the situation so that the Christian faith is 'failing' because of them. Politics being the latest 'realm' to cause distrust and confusion in the ranks of the faithful who are repulsed by what they hear and see.

So I take it you are just a critic and nothing more? The bible is not the cause of any negativity in my life or in the lives of millions upon million other readers and faith participates. Indeed, these folks BRAG/INSIST on the positive changes it brings/brought them.

That being said, you are correct, other people have abused the 'hard parts' within its historical pages out of ignorance, selfish ambitions, and want of filthy lucre.

If the Bible has not done anything good for you; perhaps give it time. Who knocks what you might need before all is said and done in this life.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
2.2.48  Jack_TX  replied to  CB @2.2.45    2 years ago
As for the Bible—"the Word"—it has altered the paths of countless lives, my own included. Some of those lives for good and inversely some for sordid gain (on the spectrum anything can be good/bad/abused). Its potency is what it is. It reads as it reads. Correspondingly, it changes lives as 'they' change.

Very well said.  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.49  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.46    2 years ago

One last thing I want to address with you: Your 'issue' with the historical life/fact of Jesus.

I am told there once lived a biblical Jesus, separate and apart from all other Jesus named persons of the period. Judaism 'divided' because of him. A faith was founded based upon that individual's life and manner of living. Followers  were/are in place because of him.  People died because of following him. People left the Temple 'faith'  because of him. Churches were built around his sayings and teachings. A way of life exist because of him.

In other words, the 'thing' has been built from the ground up due to this one individual: Jesus (of Nazareth). Furthermore, to deny Jesus physical existence one would have to be willing to deny Peter, Mary, John, and a host of 'cohorts' their proper existences too. Are you prepared to do this?

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
2.2.50  evilone  replied to  CB @2.2.37    2 years ago
I'm confused, Evilgenius:

What's so confusing - skeptics want evidence - evidence is diametrically opposed to Faith.  

To that end, why not just request/demand people of faith (religious expression) live up to the 'higher calling' of their beliefs and not dwell in the murky mire/bottom/lower decks of the same?

Nothing I posted even remotely touched on that. I have, and will continue to point out hypocrisy when I see it, but will be up to those of Faith to fix their own houses.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.51  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.47    2 years ago
What part friend Ozzwald do you not understand that this article which talks about decreases and 'tamping down' of the Christian faith in this country suggests to you that I, personally, am using it as vehicle to exhort Christianity?

Never claimed you are, based on the seeded article.  However based on your commentary in the seeded article, wellllllllll........

Indeed, my main point for posting the article is people have exasperated the situation so that the Christian faith is 'failing' because of them. Politics being the latest 'realm' to cause distrust and confusion in the ranks of the faithful who are repulsed by what they hear and see.

Or maybe people are changing because they are finally out growing an iron age mythology.  But I seriously do agree that the "faithful" should be repulsed by what they are hearing and seeing.

The bible is not the cause of any negativity in my life or in the lives of millions upon million other readers and faith participates.

The bible is responsible for the loss of a woman's rights to her own body, should she get pregnant.  The Anti Abortion (pro life) movement is born from religion.  This isn't the only thing that religious zealots, who are also law makers, attempt and sometimes succeed at because they feel their god is directing them.

If the Bible has not done anything good for you; perhaps give it time.

Why would I give that much power over me, to a book of fiction? 

When you can explain why slavery, rape, pedophilia, misogyny, and genocide should be considered moral and good, I will take another look at the bible.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.52  seeder  CB  replied to  evilone @2.2.50    2 years ago
Nothing I posted even remotely touched on that. I have, and will continue to point out hypocrisy when I see it, but will be up to those of Faith to fix their own houses.

I agree, Christians historically are a mixed-bag of attitudes and deeds. And I won't try to defend the indefensible. "H," my very essence is affected positively and negatively by the actions/antics/schemes/achievements of others, living and dead, in this great faith.

Still, it would not hurt you, to focus on some of the good this faith has done throughout humanity's time on Earth. We, believers, are not all creepy, villains, looking to consume more than what can be found right and in good order in the world.

 
 
 
cjcold
Professor Quiet
2.2.53  cjcold  replied to  Gsquared @2.2.4    2 years ago

And other biblical scholars believe that Jesus was simply a composite of the many traveling preachers of the time. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.54  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.51    2 years ago
Never claimed you are, based on the seeded article.  However based on your commentary in the seeded article, wellllllllll........

I do not deny I am Christian (as you all certainly well know over the years); but I am at odds with those in my faith who lie, cheat, and steal from others their liberties and freedoms while under a Christian banner/standard. That is, I will accent the positives of the faith as often, if not more so, than its negatives. The two things can be carried out simultaneously.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.55  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.51    2 years ago
The Anti Abortion (pro life) movement is born from religion.  This isn't the only thing that religious zealots, who are also law makers, attempt and sometimes succeed at because they feel their god is directing them.

People can twist anything into a 'pretzel' prison of the mind that they wish. Just look at what the republicans/conservatives are doing in the immediate: forbidding abortion as policy while wrapping their arms around Hershey Walker in Georgia for the sake of power and its 'play.' God ain't in that. It's all 'man' with a religious façade laying on top of it. Exposing their passion as a desire for power and really not about the abortion activity at all.

CAUTION! Be as fair to religion as you are to science - distinquish each in its own right!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.56  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.51    2 years ago
When you can explain why slavery, rape, pedophilia, misogyny, and genocide should be considered moral and good, I will take another look at the bible.

Ozzwald, when you can explain to me, why humanity does 'half' the dynamic things it does—good and bad—you and others like you can educate the rest of us. :)

In Ancient times, I can at best assume politics and policy was different than it is today. Because look at it, even now we have a segment of our 'freedom loving' nation that wants girls and women who are forced to have sex leading to pregnancy to bear the 'offense' offspring; Putin is killing Ukrainians simply because they can't of yet stop him; girls can produce eggs and enter puberty at really early ages apparently; and, conservatives are attacking the whole of the female populations world-wide even though few (if any living) can claim to being here without a girl or woman's efforts. Thus, females ought to be revered instead of subjugated.

Were I born into ancient times, I would like to think I would 'work' tirelessly a little bit like Jesus to effectual right some of the wrongs. . . which humanity is just coming around to call out as wrongs two-thousand plus years later.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.57  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.54    2 years ago
I do not deny I am Christian (as you all certainly well know over the years); but I am at odds with those in my faith who lie, cheat, and steal from others their liberties and freedoms while under a Christian banner/standard.

And you should be applauded for standing up for your beliefs and pointing out the hypocrisy of others.

That is, I will accent the positives of the faith as often, if not more so, than its negatives.

Most refuse to even acknowledge the negatives in the christian bible because it challenges their faith.  So again, good on you for acknowledging that all is not roses.

The two things can be carried out simultaneously.

Yes...kind of.  But before you start pointing out the good of your religion to someone, you should also point out the bad parts.  For that important a decision in your life, you need to make it with eyes wide open and considering the pros and cons.

Unfortunately churches also hide the bad parts of the bible.  Most christians never bother reading the bible, and so are unaware of the parts that do not show a wise and benevolent god, or the contradictions between what the church tells you, and what the bible tells you.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.58  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.55    2 years ago

CAUTION! Be as fair to religion as you are to science - distinquish each in its own right!

I expect the same amount of evidence from science as I do from religion.  Do you?

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.59  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.56    2 years ago
Ozzwald, when you can explain to me, why humanity does 'half' the dynamic things it does—good and bad—you and others like you can educate the rest of us.

That's not the point.  The bible is held up as an instructional of how one should live their life (by the church).  Yet, the bible approves of and supports things which we would consider horrific.

In Ancient times, I can at best assume politics and policy was different than it is today.

Is there any time in history that YOU would consider owning another human being as property, moral?  The ability to beat and rape that human being on a whim, as long as they don't die within a few days?

Why does the god of the bible feel that it is fine?

I would like to think I would 'work' tirelessly a little bit like Jesus to effectual right some of the wrongs.

Except these "wrongs" that you would strive to make right, are approved of, and supported by the christian god. 

So would you work against god?  Or do you feel god was mistaken in approving of them?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.60  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.58    2 years ago

Now why would I expect a book written before the 'age of enlightenment' to be a science book or to equal a science book? Also, we already have consensus religion and faith is not science and math. Give unto Caesar that which is Caesar's and unto God that which is God's.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.61  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.57    2 years ago
Yes...kind of.  But before you start pointing out the good of your religion to someone, you should also point out the bad parts.  For that important a decision in your life, you need to make it with eyes wide open and considering the pros and cons.

Ozzwald, I am a Christian living a celibate (homosexualized) lifestyle (alone and without child/ren) believe me I am "intensely" aware of the shortcomings of my faith in terms of what some say, do, enact, and wish for, towards me and my 'kind.'

Case in point.  I have been recently verbally abused by someone who ought to know better about my past sexual state/activity, although sex and its relationship is long since absent from my days. . . and nights. Go figure. Damned if you do-damned if you don't. And yet, I persist in 'inner' joy of Spirit. I charge such antagonism to the person-not to the religion itself which tells us all to 'be better' than. . . that!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.62  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.59    2 years ago
Is there any time in history that YOU would consider owning another human being as property, moral?  The ability to beat and rape that human being on a whim, as long as they don't die within a few days?

What kind of question is this? Live vicariously yourself:

It's Before Christ (BC) era. You have not heard there is such a thing as the Jewish God or a set of Jesus' teachings and the world around you is figuring 'it' -the surrounding world-all out in real time

. What would Ozzwald do? Would you capitalize in the moment to own something/somebody/ies?

Do you capitalize on opportunities which come your way in today's world?

What kind of 'spirit' do you possess 'today'?

What kind of 'spirit' might you have possessed in the ancient world?

Who said to participate in owning another person, by default, is to mistreat, beat, and 'ravish' them?

Slavery in the ancient world was wrong, but then so is genocide in today's world: Do you see God ending genocidal wars in our 'age'? Has God ended slavery in 'modern times'?  No! These matters exist because of people persisting in doing them even though higher percentages of the world's people have dropped the practices.

For example; Russia's Putin is demolishing and driving out Ukrainians; setting them 'to feet/flee,' and threatening nuclear war/utter destruction of tens of thousands thereabouts. That is a twenty-first century failure to live in peace with one's fellow citizens of the Earth; God has not put this 'spirit' in the heart of the Russian leader - in is what is in the man (Putins energy) coming out for all to see! 

God meets people were they are. Fault God for that if you wish, but it will be futile to do so.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.63  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.60    2 years ago
Now why would I expect a book written before the 'age of enlightenment' to be a science book or to equal a science book?

That's not even close to the question I asked.  Is that why you didn't bother to quote my question in your reply?

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.64  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.61    2 years ago
Ozzwald, I am a Christian living a celibate (homosexualized) lifestyle (alone and without child/ren) believe me I am "intensely" aware of the shortcomings of my faith in terms of what some say, do, enact, and wish for, towards me and my 'kind.'

Then one has to ask, why do you subscribe to a religion that disdains you and your lifestyle so much?  You are acting against your own religion and god's writings.

You can believe in any god you chose without the trappings of the various religions that just re-interpret the bible in any way they see fit.  Why identify as a Catholic, Protestant, Baptist, etc., etc.?

Case in point.  I have been recently verbally abused by someone who ought to know better about my past sexual state/activity, although sex and its relationship is long since absent from my days. . . and nights. Go figure. Damned if you do-damned if you don't. And yet, I persist in 'inner' joy of Spirit. I charge such antagonism to the person-not to the religion itself which tells us all to 'be better' than. . . that!

As I have said before, that is good on you for that kind of attitude.  But that does not recognize the fact that organized religions will back up that type of antagonism.  Just one example, although it is an extreme example, is Westboro Baptist Church.  Yet other Baptist churches remain silent about their actions, thus implicating themselves in the hatred.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.65  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.63    2 years ago
I expect the same amount of evidence from science as I do from religion.  Do you?

Nope. Prophets are not scientists, apostles did not have access to any microscopes. And I think it is sickening for anybody to 'exploit' ancient people for their lack. If you don't want to dignify what they offer to the world then don't, but no need to diligently work to pound 'em into powder for not having the education succeeding centuries have lain at your feet.

Nope I do not expect EQUALITY of science and religion evidence under the circumstances expressed above. :0

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.66  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.64    2 years ago
Then one has to ask, why do you subscribe to a religion that disdains you and your lifestyle so much? 

Good question. The implication is it must have something to do with "the Message"! Frankly, there is only so much liberty or version of liberty that any one person can withstand in these bodies anyway. And then, trade-offs of all kinds and types take place. Also, I was tired of one night stands. Of course, someone might say well you could get married - in the 90s not allowed. By the 2010s too accustomed to just walking 'my path.' Persists to (path) today. Besides, marriage is not for everybody anyway, right?

The issues I 'tackle' related to homosexuality in this present 'age' is for me, specifically. I defend the youth of today and tomorrow who are launching out in expression or continuing to chart their own path to freedom and liberty, against political foes and self-righteous religious types who won't leave them alone to figure life out for themselves. I confront politicians, religious types, and others who attack my fellows.

I am old(er) and mostly tending my bodily aches and pains. Love is shelved for now. :)

You can believe in any god you chose without the trappings of the various religions that just re-interpret the bible in any way they see fit.  Why identify as a Catholic, Protestant, Baptist, etc., etc.?

You can believe in any god you chose (sic). . . .  No, there is something in the religious world labelled: "the Call."  But I won't try to belabor it here. Maybe you have heard others mention it?

Actually Westboro Baptist Church is/was an extremist hate group "church" given to ridiculous cultist activities and a facade of primitive religion. It was not affiliated with any other church of its kind. Thus, in this country it had no 'authority' or contemporary it purposed to share interests and association or 'control.'

Yes, it would be nice if other churches spoke up more about the 'trying,' 'taxing,' issues of today, but it is what it is. Freedom allows them to be non-respondent if it is what they choose. Thankfully, other churches are reserved and do not JOIN into the fray caused by Westboro's small but 'loud' congregants.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.67  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.63    2 years ago
Is that why you didn't bother to quote my question in your reply?

It is not needful to respond to every question directly or 'on its face' - sometimes I choose to answer in a manner expressly to move the conversation forward. That is, not every question needs its own 'tailor-made' reply. The answer can come in various forms, statements, and even pictures and symbols.

That said, I chose to 'go back' and pull this question 'up' for remarking so as to complete a train of discussion.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.68  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.65    2 years ago
Nope. Prophets are not scientists, apostles did not have access to any microscopes.

What in the bible requires microscopes?  You are willing to take what religion tells you, today with today's technology at face value?  Isn't it time to relook at the bible with all the knowledge we have today, to understand if what it claims is even feasible?

Living in a whale's stomach?  40 days/nights of a global flood?  Talking donkeys?

And I think it is sickening for anybody to 'exploit' ancient people for their lack. If you don't want to dignify what they offer to the world then don't, but no need to diligently work to pound 'em into powder for not having the education succeeding centuries have lain at your feet.

This is not exploiting ancient people, the bible is the word of god, so shouldn't god know everything without needing a microscope?  Or is your god NOY all knowing?

Nope I do not expect EQUALITY of science and religion evidence under the circumstances expressed above

So when a priest or holy book tells you something you accept it blindly with no thought to its viability or truthfulness?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.69  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.68    2 years ago
When a priest or holy book tells you something you accept it blindly with no thought to its viability or truthfulness?

That is a fair question. However, trying to tackle it here is beyond the scope of discussion I care to get into. That is, these 'concerns' you just brought up are not what I am focused on. Simply put: I choose not to keep 'jumping' different tracts of thought—pulled out of one and into something else altogether. That said, people of faith, focus on the spiritual components of the bible narrative with more concentration than physical issues-as it is a set of books wrapped together for a larger spiritual messaging.

The "whale" and the "fhe flood"  and "talking donkey" will have to wait until another day (for me).

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.70  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.69    2 years ago
That said, people of faith, focus on the spiritual components of the bible narrative with more concentration than physical issues-as it is a set of books wrapped together for a larger spiritual messaging.

Tell that to the women that have lost control of their own bodies if they get pregnant.

I will agree that many focus on spirituality, however many of them do so without the bible or organized religion.  Those that follow the bible do so knowing that the bible tells them to spread the word of god (and to even kill non-believers in many cases).

Simply put, and to end this discussion which has gone on longer than either of us thought it would. 

  • If you believe the bible is the "word of god", you MUST accept everything it says since god is supposed to be omniscient.  
    • So to say you are a (i.e. Catholic) but do not follow the Catholic bible, means you are not a Catholic.  You can't have it both ways.
  • If you don't believe the bible is the word of god, then you must acknowledge it is a book written by man, and probably does not represent god.
    • To make it more obvious, the stories from the bible were written down years and decades after they occurred.  You ever play "telephone" in school???
 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.71  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.70    2 years ago
You ever play "telephone" in school???

Yes. Enough to know it is not relevant to how I express faith in God. Thank you for sharing your thoughts. Anything more you wish to add will be considered and appreciated accordingly. As always use what you can from above and trash what you can not. :)

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.72  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.70    2 years ago
Tell that to the women that have lost control of their own bodies if they get pregnant.

As far as I know, abortion is not a biblical topic of discussion. It is a political matter which (due to Herschel Walker's revelations and exposure on the subject matter) has pulled the cover off the pro-life politicians who use abortion as a wedge issue to get votes (and power).

I will agree that many focus on spirituality, however many of them do so without the bible or organized religion.  Those that follow the bible do so knowing that the bible tells them to spread the word of god (and to even kill non-believers in many cases).

Simply put, and to end this discussion which has gone on longer than either of us thought it would. 

  • If you believe the bible is the "word of god", you MUST accept everything it says since god is supposed to be omniscient. 

A blanket statement (in bold), and well you know that remarks and words written down must be qualified.

A 'blind' follower of God is a problematic fool who lacks proper training in the use of spiritual matters and can fall prey to scripture twisting. In addition, 'blind' worshipers/people help stir up the difficulties in the faith and cause the future falling away or failure to enter in the first place the church world faces. -CB.

Therefore, s/he should ask God for wisdom to understand what it is s/he is to do with unclear, vague, limited use, statements and passages found on the pages of 'the book' before using the book to quicken his/her error in application or 'speedy' demise.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.73  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.72    2 years ago
As far as I know, abortion is not a biblical topic of discussion.

Pro life, anti-abortion is religious at it roots.  There is no scientific basis for taking away a woman's rights to her own body.

Therefore, s/he should ask God

Ask someone you cannot see, hear, touch, smell or taste?  Very one-sided conversation.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.74  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.73    2 years ago

Okay, then you can point to the biblical 'root' in the bible that informs you pro-life and anti-abortionists are 'bible' correct to ignore a girl's and a woman's right under state and federal laws to choose. I will take a long, deep, look into it then.

You can not sense a spiritual presence in your life. . . there was a time I could not either. It is the difference between those who can and those who can't, I am sure.

At 2.2.70 you wrote: I quote:

I will agree that many focus on spirituality, however many of them do so without the bible or organized religion. 

What spirituality might you agree with  "that many" be channeling without seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, or tasting? Who are these people you are extending the benefit of the doubt? Why 'segregate bible and organized religions from your 'list'?

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.75  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.74    2 years ago
Okay, then you can point to the biblical 'root' in the bible that informs you pro-life and anti-abortionists are 'bible' correct to ignore a girl's and a woman's right under state and federal laws to choose. I will take a long, deep, look into it then.

If you can't see the connection between religion and the anti-abortion crusade, there is absolutely nothing I can say or do to make you see it.

You can not sense a spiritual presence in your life. . . there was a time I could not either. It is the difference between those who can and those who can't, I am sure.

There is a medical term for people that see or hear "spirits" or dogs talking, but the good news is that there is also medication for that.

What spirituality might you agree with  "that many" be channeling without seeing, hearing, touching, smelling, or tasting?

I know several "spiritual" people, but when they talk spirituality, they are talking nature and their inner selves.  Not some invisible sky fairy.

Why 'segregate bible and organized religions from your 'list'?

Because the bible and organized religion make claims that they cannot back up. 

They offer answers to questions, with no way to justify those answers.  And god help you (snicker) if you should question those answers. 

They threaten you if you do not believe them, and the bible even calls for the death of unbelievers.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.76  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.75    2 years ago

Thank you for the privilege of your time.  I have nothing new to add to your perspective.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.77  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.76    2 years ago

Thank you for the privilege of your time.  I have nothing new to add to your perspective.

Agreed, I believe we have hit an impasse on this discussion.  Thank you for keeping it civil, and I hope you feel the same about my replies.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.78  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.77    2 years ago

It's all good. These matters take whatever time is required to explain, elucidate, or rebuke.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
2.2.79  Ozzwald  replied to  CB @2.2.78    2 years ago
These matters take whatever time is required to explain, elucidate, or rebuke.

Have to admit it is nice to be able to dig deeper into the details, even if we do not agree, without the name calling.  Again, thank you for a very interesting discussion.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
2.2.80  seeder  CB  replied to  Ozzwald @2.2.79    2 years ago

You made my day! Thank you! :) :) :)

Let's do it again. . . soon.

 
 
 
Kavika
Professor Principal
3  Kavika     2 years ago

If Christians become a minority faith they will have brought it on themselves.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
3.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Kavika @3    2 years ago

I agree. I, even I, have questioned what this faith (of mine) is up to, as many are 'ship-wrecking' and driving it 'aground' and using terror tactics to force unbelievers to live by something other than spiritual power to 'ignite' a spiritual 'walk.'

Compare:

Zechariah 4:6  So he said to me, “This is the word of the Lord to Zerubbabel: ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the Lord Almighty." I Corinthian 3:6  "I planted the seed, and Apollos watered it, but it was God who made it grow."

Christians ought to remember their role is to serve/assist in and not to compel. Growth of/in/through faith, belongs to God alone.

This is surely taught/recorded/explained right there in the 'book'!

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
4  Jack_TX    2 years ago
Christianity is set to become a minority faith in the US as soon as 2060

I cannot imagine it taking that long.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
4.1  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Jack_TX @4    2 years ago
I cannot imagine it taking that long.

Well if emulating Christ is what makes one a Christian, they became a minority long ago. It will take a while longer for those who go through the motions but don't actually act Christlike in their everyday lives to become a minority because now it's become more of a white rightwing conservative 'brand'.

“I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.” - frequently attributed to Mahatma Ghandi

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
4.1.1  Jack_TX  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1    2 years ago
Well if emulating Christ is what makes one a Christian, they became a minority long ago.

If that's the criteria, they were never a majority to begin with.

 
 
 
Ozzwald
Professor Quiet
4.1.2  Ozzwald  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @4.1    2 years ago
Well if emulating Christ is what makes one a Christian, they became a minority long ago.

That's why they are constantly redefining who and what Yeshua is.

 
 
 
Gordy327
Professor Expert
4.2  Gordy327  replied to  Jack_TX @4    2 years ago

I'm not seeing a problem with it either.

 
 
 
Hal A. Lujah
Professor Guide
5  Hal A. Lujah    2 years ago

Religious people believe some weird shit.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
5.1  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Hal A. Lujah @5    2 years ago

People are strange
When you're a stranger
Faces look ugly
When you're alone

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
6  JohnRussell    2 years ago

The article, at least the title, is poorly worded. 

Christianity will most likely, in fact almost surely,  still be the dominant religious faith in 2060.  "Secular " or "atheist" are not faiths. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1  seeder  CB  replied to  JohnRussell @6    2 years ago

Hi John. I think the distinction, which admittedly is hidden in plain sight, is this:

1.

Christianity is set to become a minority faith in the US as soon as 2060 as millions embrace secularism, study reveals.  The decline is due to Christians switching to 'nones' - a secular mishmash of atheists, agnostics and those with no religious identity - which is set to grow from about 30 percent nowadays to as much as 52 percent by 2070.
In its 'Reorganized Religion' study, Pew Research Center reveals the number of U.S. adults identifying as Christian has dropped from 90 percent in the 1990s to 64 percent now, and will likely decrease into a minority faith over the coming decades.

Many will either remain unbelievers throughout their lives; or many will simply abandon their faith/belief system for cause.

2.

The percentage of other adherents of faith, such as Jews, Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists is set to double in share mostly driven by immigration, the study also revealed.

Christianity will lose its preeminent position in the hearts and minds of Americans (possibly the world over). In which case, those who wish to believe in something will look for another 'choice' not willing to prostitute itself or endanger good people simply for its own sordid gain/expansion/competition purposes.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
6.1.1  JohnRussell  replied to  CB @6.1    2 years ago

I saw that. I still would argue that Christianity will remain the dominant faith because secular and atheist are not religious faiths. 

Christians will be a minority among the whole population, but they wont be a minority among religious believers, in other words people who have faith. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.2  seeder  CB  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1.1    2 years ago

Ah, okay. I can not say ye or nay when you put it this way. :)

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.1.3  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @6.1.1    2 years ago

In the USA this is likely.   I do not see (and certainly do not wish to see) Islam supersede Christianity (especially in the USA).

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.4  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @6.1.3    2 years ago

The 'unknown' question is there for consideration: Can "Nones" manage absolute power without giving in to its corrupting influences noticeably better than people of faith considering nothing would be considered sacred?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.1.5  TᵢG  replied to  CB @6.1.4    2 years ago

Who are the 'nones' (non-believers?) and what is the absolute power they 'manage'?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.6  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @6.1.5    2 years ago
'nones' - a secular mishmash of atheists, agnostics and those with no religious identity.  —from the Seed.

The "absolute power," in quotes, wielded by church leaders as unbridled religious expression is driving itself down to: abuse of power and authority, political and armed warfare, and excesses of judgement.

I am not judging 'nones' for coming up/finding a place in the "stratosphere' of political expression where they should have been all alone; I am curious if Nones with the proper amount of political power will do better than the religious 'ones' who are failing us now. :)

Of course, I realize that no one can 'know' exactly what will happen in the years after 2060/70. It's just speculation.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.1.7  TᵢG  replied to  CB @6.1.6    2 years ago
I am curious if Nones with the proper amount of political power will do better than the religious 'ones' who are failing us now.

Political power often stems from the same root as religious power — the belief in authority rather than being convinced by 'the data'.   Thus an entirely secular society of human beings are apt to secure power through authority and abuse just as a society based on religion.

The advantage of religious authority, however, is that people will be more cooperative when the stakes are the greatest.   In short, it is easier to wield religious influence than mere political influence.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.8  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @6.1.7    2 years ago
Political power often stems from the same root as religious power — the belief in authority rather than being convinced by 'the data'.   Thus an entirely secular society of human beings are apt to secure power through authority and abuse just as a society based on religion.

That is interesting and telling. . . its 'saving grace' will be its ethical rules and policies instead of its morality codes?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
6.1.9  TᵢG  replied to  CB @6.1.8    2 years ago

Hard to say what causes one society to be so bad compared to others.   But I think a constitutional Republic is a critical part of the equation.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
6.1.10  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @6.1.9    2 years ago

It would appear to me that all sorts of believers make attempts to legislate something in or out of existence by appealing to a higher authority; whereas secularists appear to legislate based on what degree a activity, or conduct, can be safely and appropriately advanced.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7  Drakkonis    2 years ago

There is no single reason that explains the decline of Christianity in the US. The truth is that the reason for the decline consists of a number of factors. I won't bother to list them since anyone who's interested should do the research themselves. 

I believe, however, that the two greatest factors are the concerted efforts of a large portion of those in academia, media and secular humanist organizations that desire to eliminate the influence Christianity has had on this country and the West in general, and the other is that Christianity is a hard religion to follow in that it asks everything from its followers. It seems to me that even many Christians think Christianity is simply about accepting Christ as savior and that's pretty much it. Try to be a nice person, go to church as often as you can get yourself to go and just get on with your life. When they find this doesn't produce the desired results they fall away. Again, there are other reasons as well. 

In any case, I feel both sad and a bit relieved about the decline. Sad that so many have fallen or will fall away, perhaps to their eternal demise. But I also feel as if this will remove the dross from the church, as well, leaving what remains stronger. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.1  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7    2 years ago

Hi Drakk, I actually find your 'ode to relief' interesting. It seems to say by concentrating and condensing itself down to its new reality (in the future) our mutual faith can get off the treadmill of "producing" for production sake and to brass tasks of some much needed self-reflection and self-correction. It is true that "exploding" and mass expansions, can become unwieldy, untidy, and cause considerable excesses and waste. 

Matthew 11:12 "From the days of John the Baptist until now, the kingdom of heaven has been subjected to violence,and violent people have been raiding it."

And so it has been throughout the Christian 'era,' as people strive and contend to be in such a great faith as this-bringing with themselves attitudes seeking power, influence, and sordid gain. Remember, there have always been 'hanger ons' from the inception of the faith who simply misunderstood the (spiritual) purposes of doing good. They sought after the control and authority, and positions of leadership this faith affords any who affiliate within it.

So yes, some period for a proper consolidation can be a useful 'cooling down' cycle for our great faith.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.2  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Drakkonis @7    2 years ago
I believe, however, that the two greatest factors

It couldn't have anything to do with widespread cover-ups of child abuse in some of the largest Churches, the exposure of supposed 'moral' leaders caught doing exactly what they're telling their parishioners not to, or the many TV evangelists and ministers caught shearing the sheep and living lives of opulence, right? No, no, blame it on "those in academia, media and secular humanist organizations" who are determined to follow the constitution keeping a separation of church and State for ALL religions, not just the non-Christian ones.

Sad that so many have fallen or will fall away, perhaps to their eternal demise. But I also feel as if this will remove the dross from the church, as well, leaving what remains stronger. 

Oh yeah, there's another turn-off that many Christians are apparently completely oblivious of, telling others they're going to burn in hell for eternity or are "dross" if they don't live the way Christians tell them to. I'm sure that's had nothing to do with the declining numbers... /s

Dross: noun - something regarded as worthless; rubbish

No doubt it will be easier for those 'Christian warriors' to pull the trigger in their hoped-for war on the heretics, 'Armeggedon', when they're indoctrinated to believe that any non-Christians or those not abiding to Christian moral codes are 'worthless rubbish'.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.2.1  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.2    2 years ago
It couldn't have anything to do with...

As a major cause for decline? No, I don't think so.

Oh yeah, there's another turn-off that many Christians are apparently...

I'm not sure why you think we're unaware how offensive what the Bible has to say is to many people. It literally tells us it would be an offense to many, so, no surprises there.

No doubt it will be easier for those 'Christian warriors' to pull the trigger in their hoped-for war on the heretics, 'Armeggedon', when they're indoctrinated to believe that any non-Christians or those not abiding to Christian moral codes are 'worthless rubbish'.

If so, you're most likely speaking of people on the political right who are "unchurched" but use Christian ideas in defense of political beliefs. 

Prior research found that Christian nationalism was strongly associated with voting for Trump in the 2016 U.S. presidential election. However, the effects of Christian nationalism may depend on voters’ religiosity. Using national data, we assess whether the association between Christian nationalism and Trump support differed for churchgoers and nonchurchgoers and find that Christian nationalism is not significantly associated with Trump support among churchgoing voters. Instead, Christian nationalism is only significantly associated with Trump support among unchurched voters. These results suggest that while religious sentiments remain key correlates of political attitudes and behavior in the United States, these ties may have less to do with embeddedness in traditional religious organizations and more to do with the ways people use religious narratives in everyday life to construct and defend symbolic boundaries. At a time when fewer Americans attend religious services, religious narratives about Christian nationhood may have their strongest political effects when, and perhaps because, they are detached from religious institutions.

The relevance here is that those who may dream of the scenario you present may claim Christian ideas and beliefs but only so far as they perceive it supporting their political beliefs, whereas those who actually attend church are less likely to support Christian Nationalism because religion is less about politics and more about actual pursuit of Biblical goals. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7    2 years ago

I hope that the decline is due more to the rejection of 'believe this because you should' in favor of 'believe this based on the evidence'.    I hope it is due to an increase in critical thinking coupled with available information.    A move away from lore and into formal methods for ascertaining fact from reality itself.

There might be a creator, but until we have evidence of same there is no point attributing divinity to the words and ideas of ancient men whose collective works are contradictory and flawed (as one would expect).

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.1  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3    2 years ago

The Christian Faith is facing an internal existential crisis in the United States, as its successful free expression has expanded to a point where it is folding in on itself. That is, leaders are taking unfounded liberties unto themselves while one can surely question whether they have their 'ear,' mind, and heart attuned to Spirit leading.

Since Christianity is a faith-belief, since the biblical writers were not 'educated' men of the times they lived, since critical thinking was in place in the lives of the prophets and apostles (ordinary men and women) no one should be compelled to join its membership or plea its 'case' who do not or can not accept it.

(Note: There was something else I wish to add to the second paragraph that escapes me right now. I am distracted by needing to end this and take off for a while.)

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.2  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  TᵢG @7.3    2 years ago
I hope that the decline is due more to the rejection of 'believe this because you should' in favor of 'believe this based on the evidence'.

If it is, I still think it is the result of so many having seen the hypocrisy and abuse that has been exposed, where one starts to think critically instead of just accepting belief because they have many examples of why they may not want to put their trust in such organizations. When Churches were viewed as infallible I think it was easier for many to suspend their disbelief and follow the path of least resistance. Now that infallibility has been shattered which allows more people to actually ask for proof of their claims instead of just blind obedience.

Also, with the hypocrisy and abuses exposed the threats of fantasy eternal damnation lose their weight and power and often become turn-offs toward organized religion for those who no longer blindly trust what religious leaders tell them.

There might be a creator, but until we have evidence of same there is no point attributing divinity to the words and ideas of ancient men whose collective works are contradictory and flawed (as one would expect).

I agree.

 
 
 
Drinker of the Wry
Junior Expert
7.3.3  Drinker of the Wry  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.2    2 years ago
I still think it is the result of so many having seen the hypocrisy and abuse that has been exposed

Perhaps those leaving the church will continue to support charity work such as migrant shelters.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.4  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3    2 years ago
I hope that the decline is due more to the rejection of 'believe this because you should' in favor of 'believe this based on the evidence'.

I assume you hope for some sort of engagement on this issue but I can't really do it anymore. No matter how hard I try, you simply can't see that your position has no more support than mine does on a scientific level. You can't see that your position rests on faith just as much as mine does. At some point it dawned on me that we were like that Star Trek episode called "Let That Be Your Last Battle." I don't want to do that. It serves no useful purpose. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.5  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.2    2 years ago
If it is, I still think it is the result of so many having seen the hypocrisy and abuse that has been exposed, where one starts to think critically instead of just accepting belief because they have many examples of why they may not want to put their trust in such organizations. When Churches were viewed as infallible I think it was easier for many to suspend their disbelief and follow the path of least resistance. Now that infallibility has been shattered which allows more people to actually ask for proof of their claims instead of just blind obedience.

This may describe some who claim to be Christians but no one who claims to think critically would claim Christianity is a homogenous entity. I know many pastors who will tell you that if you believe what they say simply because they're the pastor then you're a fool. More importantly, the Bible practically begs people to find out for themselves. To read, think, think critically, meditate and pray. To find out the truth for themselves. When those of us who actually do the things the Bible talks about, we aren't putting our trust in an organization. We are putting our trust in God because we have a direct relationship with Him, not an organization of the kind you're thinking of. 

Of course, I've most likely wasted a lot of electrons in saying this, since it seems to me you prefer your prejudices and biases to someone who is telling you that what you've described above does not apply to the life I live as a Christian. You will continue to simply put us in the shallow Pidgeon hole you've created for us because it's nice and simple and doesn't require a lot of thought. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.6  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.4    2 years ago
You can't see that your position rests on faith just as much as mine does.

If you think that my position rests on faith then you have invented a position for me.   What is 'my' position as you envision it?

My positions are those whose likelihood of truth are supported by evidence and logic.   For example, our species is the result of evolution:  variations selected by virtue of offering survival / reproductive advantage in a changing environment.   This is cross verified by multiple disciplines ... most recently genomics.

I did not do the original research so you could play word games and claim that I have 'faith' in the collective conclusions of current and past scientists.   If so, the difference between that and religious faith is that what I hold as an approximate to truth is grounded on tiers of evidence and logic, is predictive and the predictions can be tested, and is the result of refinement based on empirical evidence over time.

Faith that the Christian God exists and was, as simply one example, the sentient entity who created our species by instantiating an Adam and Eve homo sapiens pair is based solely on lore.   It defies all that we know through science and has no evidence whatsoever to back it up.   

If one stretches the word 'faith' to encompass both of these scenarios one is simply playing fast and loose with the English language.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.7  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.5    2 years ago
it seems to me you prefer your prejudices and biases to someone who is telling you that what you've described above does not apply to the life I live as a Christian.

I'm describing what I've seen to be the majority of rightwing conservative Christians. If you're in the minority and your life doesn't resemble these other so-called Christian's I've described, then that's great. But claiming I must "prefer" my "prejudices" is essentially claiming I'm not seeing what I'm seeing and it's just my prejudices against Christians that inform my positions is ridiculous. The problem with that assumption is that the people I describe do exist (you've admitted it yourself) and they exist in quite large numbers.

As I said above, "if emulating Christ is what makes one a Christian, they became a minority long ago". All you seem to be saying here is that you claim to be among the minority of "real" Christians. However, you're also the one who called those who leave the faith "dross" aka "worthless; rubbish" which doesn't seem all that Christlike to me. The Christ in the bible welcomed the prostitutes and tax collectors who he knew needed his teachings most and was admonished for it by the Pharisees who seem to me to be the ancient version of rightwing conservative Christians who pray in public for the adulation and try to show off their supposed self-righteousness while calling the commoners ʽAm haʼaretz" or "people of the dirt" or "dirty people", not too unlike calling people "dross".

You will continue to simply put us in the shallow Pidgeon hole you've created for us because it's nice and simple and doesn't require a lot of thought.

Then perhaps you haven't actually been reading my comments. Do I have harsh criticism for those Christians I've described? Yes. Was it because I grew up as a liberal progressive and I just don't know anything about evangelical and fundamentalist Christians and don't care to spend much thought on the topic? I think anyone who has really read many of my comments knows that couldn't be further from the truth.

I was one of them. I was raised as a hardline evangelical Christian by a Christian pastor father. I myself was a pastor for over a decade and have read the bible, both Old Testament and New, cover to cover at least 3 times in my life, not including the thousands of bible quotes I would use or reference in my sermons. My criticism of rightwing conservative Christians comes from knowing them deeply and being a part of their world for many years.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.8  seeder  CB  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.7    2 years ago
However, you're also the one who called those who leave the faith "dross" aka "worthless; rubbish" which doesn't seem all that Christlike to me. The Christ in the bible welcomed the prostitutes and tax collectors who he knew needed his teachings most and was admonished for it by the Pharisees who seem to me to be the ancient version of rightwing conservative Christians who pray in public for the adulation and try to show off their supposed self-righteousness while calling the commoners ʽAm haʼaretz" or "people of the dirt" or "dirty people", not too unlike calling people "dross".

And yet, I don't believe this is the significant problem/existential crisis for the Church. The evangelical church with its large and pronounce white component, has been caught red-handed holding up a 'champion' who will not surrender to truth and peace. And worse the visible evangelical 'wing' has been exposed as power-mongers and it is now and will continue to devastate the unity and utility of the Church 'world.'

Privately, since being on NT, I can not tell you have many times recently I have been so repulsed by conservatives not listening to the voice of those whom they wish to subjugate and treat unprincipled that I actually caught myself-several times-wanting to walk away from faith altogether. I literally 'searched' my mind for an exit out of it. Only to realize where will I go?

That is close to departure. . . .

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.9  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.8    2 years ago
Only to realize where will I go?

Channel your faith into that which enabled our existence.   Try to seek an understanding of same by a deeper understanding of the reality that we have been provided.

That would be my suggestion.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.10  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.9    2 years ago

Good thought. TIG, at this point, I will state that true 'religion' leaves an indelible mark on the heart, mind, and spirit of an individual. Subsequently, It is not so easily "remedied" by the pathetic state of affairs in one of its religious 'wings.' True faith is not the same as for those who 'play' at faith, but are soon found to be shallow , pretentious , and after cheap grace .

Of faith it is said that when one finds it, it is like a pearl of great price : Thus, it can not be cast aside (so) easily.

This is what I meant by rhetorically asking: "Where will I go"?

John 6: 68 Simon Peter answered Him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have words of eternal life.

Of course, in such an instance a 'door' opens up in front of me and other believers to try to 'labor' in aid another brother or sister who is navigating away from truth and towards error. (of a spiritual nature).

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.11  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.7    2 years ago
I'm describing what I've seen to be the majority of rightwing conservative Christians. If you're in the minority and your life doesn't resemble these other so-called Christian's I've described, then that's great. But claiming I must "prefer" my "prejudices" is essentially claiming I'm not seeing what I'm seeing and it's just my prejudices against Christians that inform my positions is ridiculous. The problem with that assumption is that the people I describe do exist (you've admitted it yourself) and they exist in quite large numbers.

And I am describing what I have seen for myself. I spent 20 years in the military. I've been to churches all over the US and other parts of the world and, while I have seen some strange things, I have never seen what you describe. So, the question I have to ask myself is, why haven't I seen what you describe if it is as prevalent as you indicate? Statistically, I'd have to at some point, yet I never have. 

As I said above, "if emulating Christ is what makes one a Christian, they became a minority long ago". All you seem to be saying here is that you claim to be among the minority of "real" Christians. However, you're also the one who called those who leave the faith "dross" aka "worthless; rubbish" which doesn't seem all that Christlike to me.

Then I would have to say you know neither Christ nor the Bible. Jesus himself states in no uncertain terms that many will be cast into outer darkness where there will be "weeping and gnashing of teeth." You don't discard things that have worth. 

Further, you seem to think that I am standing in judgement of those who leave the faith, as if it is something I have determined on my own judgement. That isn't the case. You seem to think what I say comes from myself. I'm only saying what the Bible itself says about such things. If you like, I'll quote it. For instance...

“Son of man, the house of Israel has become dross to Me; all of them are bronze and tin and iron and lead in the furnace; they are the dross of silver. Therefore, thus says the Lord God, ‘Because all of you have become dross, therefore, behold, I am going to gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. Ezekiel 22:18-19.

To understand the sample verse, you need to understand that this is from God's point of view. This isn't God coaxing naughty children into doing the right thing. It is an iron fisted insistence that His standard's are the only ones that matter. Israel has broken the covenant they entered into with God, and after years of patience on God's part, He's finally had enough and puts them into the furnace. He will eliminate all those who refuse to repent until only those who do are left. 

You have your ideas about good and bad, right and wrong. What is acceptable and what isn't. Thing is, unless those things match what God has declared, it's worse than meaningless. In Christianity, the center of existence isn't ourselves. It is God. If what we are, think or do isn't centered on God, it's worthless. We were created for His purposes and if we don't live that way, it's worthless. This isn't because God is a tyrant. It's because we simply don't have the ability to do anything of worth on our own because we don't have the ability to know what is really good or evil on our own. All one need do is look at human history to know this is true. Or, even if we do know, we can't do it for very long without corrupting it, either individually or collectively. 

The Christ in the bible welcomed the prostitutes and tax collectors who he knew needed his teachings most and was admonished for it by the Pharisees who seem to me to be the ancient version of rightwing conservative Christians who pray in public for the adulation and try to show off their supposed self-righteousness while calling the commoners ʽAm haʼaretz" or "people of the dirt" or "dirty people", not too unlike calling people "dross".

First, let's get something straight about Jesus 'welcoming prostitutes and tax collectors.' Jesus did not accept them because they were those things. He thought they were as sinful as the Pharisees did. What differentiated Jesus from the Pharisees was that Jesus offered a solution where the Pharisees simply offered judgement for the purpose of highlighting their own supposed righteousness. That is, Jesus did not hold the position that it was okay to be a prostitute or a tax collector. His position was/is that, yes, you are a sinner and you're bound for Hell, but I come to provide a way for your sins to be forgiven if you deny yourself and follow me. He expected his followers to stop what they were doing and, instead, live a life in obedience to God. 

As for your complaint about modern conservatism, I think you get it wrong. Since conservatives aren't homogenous I'm sure some are as you describe, but I think they would be a small minority. What most conservatives, in my opinion, are against is the Left's use of the needy to promote their agenda. The Left, and I capitalize the Left to indicate the extreme left, doesn't give a damn about the needy, the poor or anyone else. They care about power and they'll use anyone to get it. So, from my perspective, what you consider conservatives calling the needy as people of the dirt is a mischaracterization of what's actually happening. What conservatives are actually doing is fighting what the Left is doing with what you describe as 'people of the dirt' is doing with such people. Conservatives give way more money to helping 'people of the dirt' than Leftists do.  

I was one of them. I was raised as a hardline evangelical Christian by a Christian pastor father. I myself was a pastor for over a decade and have read the bible, both Old Testament and New, cover to cover at least 3 times in my life, not including the thousands of bible quotes I would use or reference in my sermons. My criticism of rightwing conservative Christians comes from knowing them deeply and being a part of their world for many years.

I'm not stupid enough to deny your experience. However, I will state that the number of times you've read the Bible is irrelevant. There are secular/atheists who know the Bible much better than you or I and, still, they remain secular/atheists. It doesn't really tell us anything. I could care less if you read the Bible all the way through every year of your life since you learned to read. The only relevant thing would be, why did you abandon it? Based on what you've written here, I can only conclude it is because of the actions of other people. 

I can't count the number of times I've heard people say some version of, "I couldn't be a Christian, or I stopped believing in Christianity, because of (some account of those who said they were Christian.) Usually, it goes something like, I stopped believing because of the hypocrisy in the church. I'm not exaggerating when I say I find this as amazing as someone who declares running one's fingers through a table saw blade is a good idea. 

Christianity isn't about what anyone else does. It isn't about what's relevant, politically, at any particular point in time. It is about what you yourself will do in relation to God. It is "do what you want, but as for me, me and my house will serve the Lord." You say you were raised as one of "them". I don't know what that means to me but I don't believe there was no one who actually followed the Lord that you could not point to as an example of a real Christian. If there really wasn't then I can only say you should have left wherever you were at and at least searched for something that you thought followed the Bible. 

In the end, someone who actually understands the Bible and believes God would never abandon the faith. This is because a real believer would believe that serving others rather than self is the better course, which is what God Himself does. They would believe that, no matter the personal suffering it brought, doing what God commands us is worth the price which, by the way, we didn't even pay. 

Lastly, I am the prostitute. I am the tax collector. I am the worst of sinners. I do not measure up to God's standards any more than the God denier does so I do not consider myself anyone's judge. When I speak of dross, that isn't my judgement. It's simply what the Bible, God's word to us, says. If you were a pastor who actually knew God, you'd know what I mean. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.12  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.6    2 years ago
What is 'my' position as you envision it?

It isn't what your position is, it's why you hold it. 

My positions are those whose likelihood of truth are supported by evidence and logic.

I say the same for my position. We both have the same sets of data but arrive at different conclusions. 

For example, our species is the result of evolution:

The relevant portion of what you call evolution is that it is an unguided, mostly chance process. This is an impossible assertion to prove and, therefore, a position of faith. 

I did not do the original research so you could play word games and claim that I have 'faith' in the collective conclusions of current and past scientists.   If so, the difference between that and religious faith is that what I hold as an approximate to truth is grounded on tiers of evidence and logic, is predictive and the predictions can be tested, and is the result of refinement based on empirical evidence over time.

This isn't what I am referring to and I think you know it. Whether or not gravity exists or what its properties are is not in dispute. Whether or not it is an invention of God or not, is. That you restrict the answer to such a question to what is physically, empirically answerable is a matter of personal faith in a specific system of belief is just that. A matter of faith. That is, it isn't so much what you believe, it's why you believe it. 

Faith that the Christian God exists and was, as simply one example, the sentient entity who created our species by instantiating an Adam and Eve homo sapiens pair is based solely on lore.   It defies all that we know through science and has no evidence whatsoever to back it up.

A position held by a strict materialist. That is, for what the Bible to be true necessarily means that it must be put in scientific terms for it to be valid. That is a position of faith. 

If one stretches the word 'faith' to encompass both of these scenarios one is simply playing fast and loose with the English language.

Not at all. That is, it isn't I who is playing fast and loose with language. Science doesn't force you to hold the views that you do. If it had such power, why are there those who deny what you believe? Since this is obviously so, you choose to believe what you do because you have faith it is the right course of action rather than something forced upon you. You believe what you do because of internal factors, not external. Faith. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.13  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.11    2 years ago
You don't discard things that have worth.

Wow.  Those who don't believe are worthless.  That is one of the most religiously bigoted and unchristian things I've heard anybody say, even from a Christian point of view.  Did you entirely misunderstand the parable of the prodigal son?

As far as DP's experience of the hypocrisy of many church leaders - you needn't rely only on his personal experiences.  A quick perusal of the news will show you he is right.  The cover-up of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church.  Evangelical girls made to apologize to their congregations for having been the victims of sexual abuse.  Grifting by the likes of Kenneth Copeland, Creflo Dollar, Joel Osteen.

But if you want personal experience, I can offer up that of an online friend.  She was sexually assaulted as a teenager by her pastor.  She confided in a friend, who told the pastor and his wife.  The two of them then told her that she would be sinning if she told anybody - burdening others with her problems and ruining the reputation of an otherwise good man who slipped.  She was told that if she informed her mother, her mother would stop coming to church and "lose her salvation".  So she didn't tell anyone else for decades.  She was told she could only talk to another pastor or the wife of her abuser, if she felt she needed to talk to somebody.  So maybe consider that, in all those churches you've visited, you haven't heard the entire truth of every congregation member.  There might be people sitting in the pews who are the victims of abuse by leaders in that church, and you might never have had a clue, because the cover-up was so effective.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.14  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.11    2 years ago

I disagree. I disagree with pretty much every single word in your tiring diatribe. If you haven't seen the world of Christianity I described, then you have your head buried in the sand.

You say it's not your judgement but Gods, which of course is what every fucking judgmental asshole Christian has been doing for centuries. If it turns out the God of the bible actually exists, I'll take the judgement from them, not you or any other self-righteous snob.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.15  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.12    2 years ago
It isn't what your position is, it's why you hold it. 

My position is that there is no evidence that the Christian God exists (the god defined and attributed by the Bible) and thus there is no reason to believe said god exists.   My position is that the Bible offers no evidence that it contains divine truth but plenty of evidence that it is indeed merely a product of ancient men unassisted by a divine guide.

I say the same for my position. We both have the same sets of data but arrive at different conclusions. 

You conclude that the Christian God exists and is as described by the Bible and that the Bible is divine truth.   There is no data supporting that conclusion.

I conclude that the Bible contradicts itself and is thus not the perfect word of a divine entity.    I do not conclude that no divine entity exists, just that the Bible is almost certainly merely words of ancient men spinning tales.   The data for the contradiction is the Bible itself.   But if we were to look at specific items that reveal ignorance of reality as revealed by modern science (what one would expect of ancient men), the creation event vs. evolution, origin of languages, worldwide flood, etc. contradict what we have learned of our history through science and the data here is empirical, tested and overwhelming.

The relevant portion of what you call evolution is that it is an unguided, mostly chance process. This is an impossible assertion to prove and, therefore, a position of faith. 

We have substantial fossil records showing the evolution of species.   Genetics clearly shows the relatedness of species (showing common origins in the phylogenetic tree).   The 'unguided process' has been witnessed repeatedly with various species in nature ( ) and of course in the lab with microorganisms ().   You (and everyone else) witnessed the evolution of the COVID-19 virus play out worldwide in real time — the mechanism of evolution is undeniably real.

Whether or not it [ gravity ] is an invention of God or not, is.

There might be a sentient entity who engineered the forces in our universe.   There is no way to argue that either way.   I do not claim that no sentient entity exists, however you claim that one exists (impossible to prove) and, much worse (replete with contradictions) that it is the highly attributed entity described by the Bible.   

In short:  we agree gravity exists and that we can describe it (albeit not completely) in formal mathematics rooted in formal physics.    How gravity came to exist in our universe is unknown (science can identify the distinction of gravity from weak nuclear, strong nuclear and electromagnetic forces but cannot speak of its origin).   Thus science holds that we do not know the origin of gravity.   You, however, claim gravity is a product of the Christian God yet have no data whatsoever to support even the existence of this god.

Our positions are profoundly different.   Mine are rooted in science and logic and go only as far as the evidence;  yours are rooted in the unsubstantiated words of ancient men (and logic).

That is, for what the Bible to be true necessarily means that it must be put in scientific terms for it to be valid. That is a position of faith. 

That is NOT my point.   My point is that we know that the Bible is imperfect based on science and logic.   That is not a position of faith; it is the exact opposite.   A book that declares the origin of our species was two created homo sapiens who simply popped into existence by the hand of the Christian God contradicts well-founded science.   A book that declares our planet was subjected to a planetary flood contradicts well-founded science.   The book is wrong.   It is imperfect.   Words attributed to God are shown to be wrong.   The Bible contradicts what we know and contradicts itself;  it therefore is imperfect.    The words attributed to a perfect God are imperfect — a critical contradiction.   A perfect omniscient god who can be surprised, angered, disappointed, persuaded, etc. is a direct contradiction.    My conclusions are a result of real data and logic, not faith.

Not at all. That is, it isn't I who is playing fast and loose with language.

Your basic response is to simply deem my ' approach ' as a position of faith.   Simply tossing a label is not an argument.

Science doesn't force you to hold the views that you do.

An odd thing to proclaim.   I agree, science does not force one to hold particular views.   

If it had such power, why are there those who deny what you believe? Since this is obviously so, you choose to believe what you do because you have faith it is the right course of action rather than something forced upon you. You believe what you do because of internal factors, not external. Faith. 

And, as I noted, you continue to play fast and loose with the word ' faith '.   You have greatly expanded the meaning of the word ' faith ' from " belief in God or in the doctrines or teachings of religion " to ' being convinced of something '.

If I stated that I hold that the Earth is a spheroid, you would call that ' faith '.   That, Drakk, is playing fast and loose with words.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.16  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.11    2 years ago
Lastly, I am the prostitute. I am the tax collector. I am the worst of sinners. I do not measure up to God's standards any more than the God denier does so I do not consider myself anyone's judge.

Ahem, I planned not to address the "series" of interactive comments between you, Dismayed Patriot, Sandy, and TiG, but this statement stuck out to me (among "the Leftist/conservative comparison which was shall we say. . . 'imperfect matching'). Moving on to my issue:

This quote above is rhetoric. I can say this because you have evidenced that you consider yourself more than me, thus you sat in judgement of me. How? I, known to you as a brother in this faith, you won't 'lower' yourself to address in comment as you seek out others who with certainty explain they have no need of your, my, our faith. Often, you accuse me of being a friend to these 'worldly' people (possibly so and in one case-yes openly), but clearly. . . I can not be a 'friend' to you, . . . brother in the faith.

Why do I say this: CB @7.1

You snubbed me, though there were 'encouragement' and evenso much that could be 'entered into' between two believers in a shared faith/experience. Subsequently, that quote (above) is merely rhetoric-clearly you have decided that I am not even 'worthy' of time to comment.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.17  seeder  CB  replied to  CB @7.3.16    2 years ago

One more thing:

1 John 4:20 If someone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for the one who does not love his brother whom he has seen, cannot love God whom he has not seen.  Source:

compare:

Matthew 6:14 For if you forgive other people for their offenses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive other people, then your Father will not forgive your]offenses.  m

When a woman was caught in the act of adultery (John 8:1-11) , RELIGION LEADERS looked to their strict doctrinal beliefs and determined she should be terminated (stoned) as a mandatory requirement for ending a corrupting influence. It is/was what the Law requires after all!

Jesus looked beyond the adulteress' flaw and delivered to her love and forgiveness she so desperately needed in this moment in that it could possibly make her a better person at some point in the future. Jesus demonstrated for all to see - what he talked about: Forgiveness.

The religious leaders surely harbored memories of past offenses they were forgiven of; o r soon would need forgiveness for committing ahead. And if they did not expect God to hold them to an EXACTING standard (without mercy) they should not judge others without emphasis on compassion.

Accordingly, how many times should the religious leaders forgive this woman—

Matthew 18: 21 Then Peter came up and said to him, “Lord, how often will my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? As many as seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.

— Jesus forgives over and over and over and over and over. . . and (repeat).

The moral of the story: People should forgive each other and talk to each other , while leaving final judgement up to God alone.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.18  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.13    2 years ago
Wow.  Those who don't believe are worthless.  That is one of the most religiously bigoted and unchristian things I've heard anybody say, even from a Christian point of view.  Did you entirely misunderstand the parable of the prodigal son?

Well, based on what you've said here, I'm sure that you misunderstand the parable. But aside from that, have you actually read any of the Bible? If so, do you get the impression that God is some version of a chill surfer dude who's cool with everything as long as we're nice to each other or does He have very defined ideas about what is and isn't acceptable behavior to Him? The Bible describes a theistic God, not a deistiic one. 

As far as DP's experience of the hypocrisy of many church leaders - you needn't rely only on his personal experiences.  A quick perusal of the news will show you he is right.

It isn't a matter of whether or not he's right about those things happening. I know they are happening. The question is how prevalent is it? I do not believe it is as prevalent as some like to make it seem or I should have run into it by now in my own experience. That is the point. 

 
 
 
afrayedknot
Junior Quiet
7.3.19  afrayedknot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.18    2 years ago

“The question is how prevalent is it?”

Is not once enough, in the name of god?

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.20  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.18    2 years ago

Yes, Drakk, I've read the entire Bible several times.  You forget that I mentioned, I grew up Christian, in a fairly fundamentalist church.

I've read it enough to know that the words attributed to Christ were much different from those of the writers of the OT, and much different from Paul's.  If one calls oneself a Christian, one ought to pay more attention to those of Christ.  He who told the parable.  He who made it clear from that parable that he does not hold anyone to be worthless.

You don't believe the hypocrisy and abuse are prevalent, but many of your comments could be characterized as abusive of those who do not share your beliefs, so your perception of abuse may be skewed.

It's not just the overt abuse, you know.  The sexual abuse and financial exploitation.  There's the emotional abuse, too.  Telling a child they were born deserving damnation is abuse.  Condemning a lack of faith in that which can in no way be demonstrated is abuse (and a trick shared with non-religions con artists).  Oppression of entire groups - women, LGBTQ people, those of other races - is abuse, and has been committed by various denominations at some point in history.  Promoting religious bigotry is abuse - calling Catholics idolaters, for example, or accusing Jews of killing Jesus, which is somewhat common among evangelical churches.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.21  Drakkonis  replied to  afrayedknot @7.3.19    2 years ago
Is not once enough, in the name of god?

It should not occur even once, in God's name, obviously, but that is irrelevant to the point. I began this thread explaining what I thought the two biggest reasons were for people falling away from the faith. Apparently, those reasons were not suitable to DP and suggested that I was ignoring a more immediate and larger reason. I told him that no, I didn't think what he presented was a major reason for people leaving the faith. It's actually more of an excuse, to my mind. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.22  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.21    2 years ago
It's actually more of an excuse, to my mind.

DP pointed out that many people are realizing that the emperor has no clothes.  This response blames those speaking the truth.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.23  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.11    2 years ago
It's because we simply don't have the ability to do anything of worth on our own because we don't have the ability to know what is really good or evil on our own.

Well, back again to morality.   I submit that no human being knows what is really good or evil (in terms of absolute morality) and there is no clear divine direction.

So how, exactly, do you propose people determine what is really good or evil?   If this comes from reading the Bible then we could reinstitute slavery and be good with God.    Surely you see the problem.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.24  seeder  CB  replied to  CB @7.3.17    2 years ago

From the elapsed time and the total disregard, it is evident that some here would not forgive the adulterous woman, instead opting to take the pharisaic mindset and stone/terminate/ this woman.

Jesus found/illustrated/demonstrated a different way and so we see some would snub their noses at his approach/attitude/handling of the situation.

Perhaps it is possible that Jesus' manner of dealing with this woman would offend such people.  Hmmm.

Such is the way for those who practice asceticism. Well, I shall move on.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.25  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.20    2 years ago
were much different from those of the writers of the OT, and much different from Paul's

From my reading of the bible there are three distinct ideologies being expressed. There is the unforgiving, go kill your neighbors or make slaves of them, even the women and children, and take the land I have "promised you". Then there is the forgiving, turn the other cheek, welcome back the prodigal son, praise the non-believing Samaritan for his good works teaching of Christ. And lastly there is the organized controlled congregational proselytizing of Paul who used the story of Christ to build a doctrinal religion around, one that didn't allow women to preach and used the threat of damnation and the promise of Christs return to control them.

He who told the parable.  He who made it clear from that parable that he does not hold anyone to be worthless.

I imagine many of todays fundamentalist's feel very much like the prodigal sons brother in regards to those who aren't living as they live but still see success and blessings. I think a bigger question in their minds isn't 'why do bad things happen to good people?' but 'why do good things happen to people they have judged as bad?'. 

"25 “Now his older son was in the field, and as he came and drew near to the house, he heard music and dancing. 26 And he called one of the servants and asked what these things meant. 27 And he said to him, ‘Your brother has come, and your father has killed the fattened calf, because he has received him back safe and sound.’ 28 But he was angry and refused to go in. His father came out and entreated him, 29 but he answered his father, ‘Look, these many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your command, yet you never gave me a young goat, that I might celebrate with my friends. 30 But when this son of yours came, who has devoured your property with prostitutes, you killed the fattened calf for him!’" - Luke 15:25-30

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.26  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.20    2 years ago
I've read it enough to know that the words attributed to Christ were much different from those of the writers of the OT, and much different from Paul's.  If one calls oneself a Christian, one ought to pay more attention to those of Christ.  He who told the parable.  He who made it clear from that parable that he does not hold anyone to be worthless.

Look. I'm not trying to poke you in the eye or something or accuse you of wrongdoing, but I simply can't understand how you can say this even an approximation of the truth and why I asked if you actually read the Bible. The words of Jesus, Paul and the OT are in agreement. They aren't saying different things, unless one reads them selectively. Like you are apparently reading the parable. 

The parable wasn't about a person's worth. The parable was about God willingness to forgive and take a person back as long as they turned away from their sinful life and came back to Him. 

This is how the parable would have been understood to those Jesus said it to. In their culture, the father would have been the ruler of the family much in the way a king is over a nation. As one of the father's sons, the son in the parable would have been expected to obey and serve his father much like anyone serving their king, holding the same views and goals as the father. That is, the son would have been expected to promote and work towards his father's interests, not his own. That was a son's duty. 

But in the parable, the son rejects his father and asks for what isn't rightfully his until after his father's death or when the father decides to give it. Then the son goes and wastes all that was given to him by the father on useless, meaningless pleasures. In the end, it ruins him and realizes what he really had with his father. 

Broken and humbled, he returns to his father, asking for the lowest position among his father's servants, not even asking to be still considered his son, if he could just be under his father's protection. But the father's heart was so great he forgave his son and lavished him with love and restored his position in the family. 

The parable is about God's eagerness to forgive us and bring us into His family if only we would return to Him. It isn't about our intrinsic worth. In fact, the story goes out of its way to illustrate that the son had no worth apart from his father and that, in spite of it, the father showed mercy and love for his son. Not because the son had earned it or was worthy of it, but because that was the father's nature. The father bestowed worth on his son that the son didn't have on his own. This is the point of the parable. 

You don't believe the hypocrisy and abuse are prevalent,

Not what I said. I said I don't believe it is as prevalent as some would have us believe. Also, I should have made a distinction between what I consider the Christian church and what you probably do. I don't consider the RCC, Mormons, JW's and others like them as actual Christian churches because although they will tell you they believe in Jesus Christ as savior, what they mean by that is very different from what the Bible says and what mainline protestant churches believe. 

but many of your comments could be characterized as abusive of those who do not share your beliefs, so your perception of abuse may be skewed.

I know my comments are considered to be abusive to most here. I wish it could be otherwise but I'm not going to tell you less than the truth because of that. But, also, the blame can be shared by those who consider my words abusive. I am not aiming at anyone in particular, with the possible exception of CB, and even then, I'm not trying to abuse him. I just reject what he says as Biblical. But for the rest, I'm talking about a set of facts as expressed in the Bible, not addressing anyone in particular. If they choose to think I'm pointing a finger at them, I can't do anything about it. 

It's not just the overt abuse, you know.  The sexual abuse and financial exploitation.  There's the emotional abuse, too.  Telling a child they were born deserving damnation is abuse.

This is too general to reply to, specifically, so I will reply in kind. That is, generally. So, do these things occur? Yes, of course. But are they the rule or are they the exceptions? And do these things occur outside of the Church? Yes, of course. More or less, though? 

Condemning a lack of faith in that which can in no way be demonstrated is abuse (and a trick shared with non-religions con artists).

This one is frustrating in the extreme because of the hypocrisy necessary to make the claim. By making this claim you are condemning those who you believe differently than you do, so, you condemn yourself for what you condemn them for. Do you not see how impossible a situation you put yourself in? 

Oppression of entire groups - women, LGBTQ people, those of other races - is abuse, and has been committed by various denominations at some point in history.

More hypocrisy. Do you not oppress pedophiles? Zoophiles? Yes, yes, now you're going to trot out your argument as to why but it doesn't matter. What matters is that you are making such judgements according to what you believe is right. You're still going to make your argument as to why anyway so let me just give you my response to it now, since I already know what you will say. 

What can you point to that proves that such things are wrong? A group of people wrote something on paper and called it a law? There's lots of paper. They can write any laws they want to at any time that says the opposite. Just look around at various governments all over the world and the laws they have. How many of those do you reject, even though they are laws? A state outlawing abortion, perhaps? So, law is a no-go as an answer. 

Human decency? That would be laughable. How many atrocities have been committed over the history of the human race? How many times in our own lives have we been petty and unloving or indifferent to those around us? How about to the world that keeps us alive? 

So, really, what you've said here about oppression of entire groups is that we don't agree with your sense of morality, which you can't defend any more than we can, objectively. So, again, you condemn us for what you yourself are doing. Fun, isn't it? 

Promoting religious bigotry is abuse - calling Catholics idolaters, for example, or accusing Jews of killing Jesus, which is somewhat common among evangelical churches.

And yet more condemnation by someone who can't prove her own morality any more valid than anyone else's. That morality, generally speaking, seems to be that anyone should be able to do whatever they want to do unless it harms another person. Again, what can you point to that says that's actually moral and, equally important, who decides what constitutes harmful behavior and why? 

For the Christian, at least, we do have some standard to which we can point to justify calling Catholics idolaters or Jews the killer of Jesus. The Bible. Is the theology and actions of the Catholic church supported by what's in the Bible? I do not believe that it is. Did Jews kill Jesus? It says they did. 

(And before you call me antisemitic, I'm simply stating a fact as recorded in the Bible. The relevance is that the people who should have welcomed God come in the flesh rejected him for their own desires. It wasn't that they were somehow different from the rest of us. They weren't. God could have chosen someone else besides Abraham. Someone in China for instance, or America, and it would have turned out the exact same way. The Bible might have said that the descendants of George Washington killed Jesus.)

In the end, what it comes down to is that I believe something different than you do. You condemn what I say but I do not take it personally. I understand that, regardless of what you think of me as a person, what really bothers you is what I believe. I don't consider you any better or worse a person than I am. I just believe you're wrong in what you believe. That's unavoidable. That's life. 

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
7.3.27  Trout Giggles  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
the RCC, Mormons, JW's and others like them as actual Christian churches because although they will tell you they believe in Jesus Christ as savior, what they mean by that is very different from what the Bible says and what mainline protestant churches believe. 

All denominations differ on how they interpret The Word. That doesn't make them any less Christian than you For Crissakes! How many fucking wars were fought over that very concept?

You should be ashamed of yourself. You don't get to judge who is a Christian and who is not based on their doctrine/beliefs.

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
7.3.28  devangelical  replied to  Trout Giggles @7.3.27    2 years ago

fringe evangelicals cannot seem to grasp the constitutional concept that in this country all religions are equal to no religion.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.29  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.25    2 years ago
From my reading of the bible there are three distinct ideologies being expressed.

I'd say that's a pretty good example of how many view the Bible. I think it's wrong in its entirety but it sure is a popular view. 

From my reading of the Bible there is one continuous story about how God will redeem the lost. 

The OT begins with a loving and patient God, who creates the universe and the earth. He creates creatures in His image to rule over it in His name, but they reject Him and go their own way. Rather than destroy them and start over, He is patient with them and begins His plan to rescue mankind. He creates a covenant with one man. Later, He makes a covenant with that man's descendants, giving them laws by which they will be acceptable to Him, but they keep breaking it over and over again. God disciplines them but keeps giving them opportunities to repent. Sometimes they do but eventually they break it again. The message of the OT, in one respect, seems clear. God is holy and He will not accept anything less than holy into His kingdom. It is also clear that man is unable to meet those terms. 

The New Testament, or the new covenant is the part where God's solution to the problem is presented. Namely, Jesus. Jesus does two things while he is on earth. The first and most obvious was to die on the cross a completely innocent man before God, satisfying God's sense of justice for the sins committed by those who put their faith in Jesus. The second was to illustrate what a true human being was intended to be. What it would look like. And it wasn't that he did everything perfectly. It was why he did them. His Father was the center of his life. The Father was his identity and he was completely humble and obedient before Him, even though by his very nature he was equal with is Father. 

Put slightly differently, what Jesus did was take our sins on the cross as if he were the guilty one and impute to us his perfect life as if we had lived his, and show us the kind of life the Father wanted the Israelites to live all along in the OT. 

As for Paul, I have never understood the accusations of creating a system of control, as such appears neither in his words or his recorded life. If that was his goal, he doesn't seem to have benefitted from it personally. Rather, what I see is one who spread the good news, explained the theology behind what God is doing in the world and give instruction for the practical application of the words Jesus spoke.  

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
7.3.30  Jack_TX  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.13    2 years ago
Wow.  Those who don't believe are worthless.

That's not actually what he said.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
7.3.31  Jack_TX  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.20    2 years ago
I've read it enough to know that the words attributed to Christ were much different from those of the writers of the OT, and much different from Paul's.  If one calls oneself a Christian, one ought to pay more attention to those of Christ.

He just quoted Christ and you called him a bigot.  

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.32  Drakkonis  replied to  Trout Giggles @7.3.27    2 years ago
All denominations differ on how they interpret The Word. That doesn't make them any less Christian than you For Crissakes!

That would depend on how you define what a Christian is, wouldn't it? Perhaps you define Christian is anyone who claims to be one. If so, why should that be the standard? Why shouldn't the standard be what the Bible says it is? 

How many fucking wars were fought over that very concept?

Not as many as you probably think. Very few wars were fought for religious reasons. That isn't to say that religion doesn't factor into other wars but those wars were not fought for religious reasons. 

You should be ashamed of yourself. You don't get to judge who is a Christian and who is not based on their doctrine/beliefs.

If you mean I don't get to judge individuals as to their Christianity, I would and do agree. I am speaking of their belief doctrine/systems. I am speaking of their theology. And what gives me the right to judge that is what's in the Bible they claim to follow. To be more specific, the Bible commands it. 

Take the RCC, for instance. The core of Christianity is Jesus and his substitutionary death on the cross. Everything rests on that. What Protestantism and the RCC believes about that is very different. The Bible makes it clear that we are saved by Christ's atoning sacrifice alone. The RCC will tell you they believe the same but won't tell you (not right away) that it's also works.

I'll try to keep it short, but it goes like this. In the RCC, accepting Christ saves you but you're only completely saved at particular moments. Specifically, if you go to confession and confess your sins to a priest and, for whatever reason, you die the instant the priest forgives you (which is another problem) you go straight to heaven. But, if you die an hour later and you commit even the smallest sin of thought, now you have to go to Purgatory and suffer for a period of time. Christ's sacrifice isn't enough to completely cover your sins. But it is even more strange than that. There's a sort of "go fund me" thing where you can do good deeds for those who are in Purgatory so they can get out sooner. There's sort of a bank of good deeds the RCC maintains that handles the transactions. 

Thing is, there's absolutely no support anywhere to be found in the Bible for this. Not without mangling verses and context out of recognition. But it also ignores the logical inconsistency of it all in the first place. First, it means that the blood of an infinitely powerful God isn't enough to save you. You have to make up for what He lacks. Really? Second, if good deeds could be the basis of your getting out of Purgatory, a sort of mini Hell, why would God have needed to die on the Cross in the first place? Just do enough good deeds, suffer for a while in Purgatory and, bam! You're in like Flint!

That's the example. The point is that Christianity is defined by the Bible. Just as "doctor of medicine" is defined by whatever doctors get accredited by. Why do you think it is wrong or unreasonable for me to define Christianity by what the Bible says it is? Interpretation. Yeah, i know. But are you claiming that anyone can claim Christianity even though it directly contradicts what the Bible describes a Christian to be? Then are you prepared to claim anyone who says they are a medical doctor simply because they say they are, despite evidence to the contrary? 

In the end, it seems you are upset with me because I don't go along with the wisdom of this generation. That is, everyone's truth is actually truth and I have no right to argue otherwise. Sorry. That's not my belief. 

 
 
 
devangelical
Professor Principal
7.3.33  devangelical  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.32    2 years ago

gee, maybe you can enlighten us here by ranking all religions from nearest to and farthest from god.

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
7.3.34  evilone  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.32    2 years ago
That would depend on how you define what a Christian is, wouldn't it? Perhaps you define Christian is anyone who claims to be one. If so, why should that be the standard? Why shouldn't the standard be what the Bible says it is? 

A fine example of The No True Scotsman logical fallacy.  

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.35  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.23    2 years ago
Well, back again to morality.   I submit that no human being knows what is really good or evil (in terms of absolute morality)

Agreed and, ironically, that's the point of the episode in the Garden of Eden with the serpent. The devil lied when he said we'd be like God, able to say what is good and what isn't. Human history is evidence of the lie. 

and there is no clear divine direction.

This I disagree with and, since I do...


So how, exactly, do you propose people determine what is really good or evil?

I can't answer your question according to the terms you set. 

If this comes from reading the Bible then we could reinstitute slavery and be good with God.    Surely you see the problem.

The problem I see is that you don't understand what the Bible says. What words of Paul, Peter or James, for instance, would lead you to believe that Christians would think they could reinstitute slavery and be right with God? 

As to your previous post. You provided specifics concerning what you believe. That's fine, but it also misses the point. Again, it isn't what you believe but why you believe what you do that is taken on faith. And I am not playing fast and loose with the word. I'm using it in its normal context. The basic meaning of the word is defined...

Faith: complete trust or confidence in someone or something.

the next definition is the same, except it provides a specific target of faith.

Faith: strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.

Listing them separately gives the impression that there are two different concepts being described but that isn't the case. One can easily replace "science" for "God" in the second definition without changing the meaning of faith, since there are those who believe science will deliver the human race from its problems and deficiencies. Faith is faith, regardless of where it is placed. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.36  Drakkonis  replied to  evilone @7.3.34    2 years ago
A fine example of The No True Scotsman logical fallacy. 

If you think so it would only demonstrate you don't understand what constitutes the No True Scotsman fallacy. If so, don't feel alone. Most don't understand it, in my experience. 

The No True Scotsman fallacy isn't about the idea that one can't define what constitutes a thing. if that were the case, we'd need to toss dictionaries. For instance, if you look up the definition of Scotsman you will find...

  1. a male native or inhabitant of Scotland, or a man of Scottish descent

So, to at least some degree, being a Scotsman is a defined thing not open to interpretation. That is, a black woman in Africa who's ancestry is purely African could not credibly declare they are a true Scotsman without redefining what it means to be a Scotsman. 

Where the fallacy occurs is when one ascribes a generalized characteristic that would not logically be a basis for defining what a Scotsman was. For example, if one said no true Scotsman would put brown sugar on their oatmeal when many people born and raised in Scotland actually eat it that way, that would be an example of the fallacy. It doesn't mean there are no true Scotsmen. 

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
7.3.37  Jack_TX  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.32    2 years ago
If so, why should that be the standard? Why shouldn't the standard be what the Bible says it is? 

To be fair, exclusive reliance on the Bible is a very protestant mindset.  

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.38  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
I am not aiming at anyone in particular, with the possible exception of CB, and even then, I'm not trying to abuse him.

Well, being religiously snobbish especially to "CB" is interesting and curious, because of all the assembled here: we OUGHT to be able to talk. Therefore, yes there is some abuse occurring towards me. But, I digress. :)

I just reject what he says as Biblical.

That's rich. Dares to come from an individual who refuses to engage me 'full frontal' in discussion or debate too. As Gloria Gaynor would say: "I will survive."  (I have no choice.)

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.39  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
More hypocrisy. Do you not oppress pedophiles? Zoophiles? Yes, yes, now you're going to trot out your argument as to why but it doesn't matter. What matters is that you are making such judgements according to what you believe is right. You're still going to make your argument as to why anyway so let me just give you my response to it now, since I already know what you will say. 

What insolence! Next, comes blaming these individuals for their peculiarities involving a child and an animal. Followed by they can't be born that 'way' . . . to which I would as what entity is 'in-charge' of the overseeing of human nature anyway?

But, you don't ask me for 'participation' so I am not on the hook for an answer: "Whew!"   /s

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.40  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.29    2 years ago
The OT begins with a loving and patient God, who creates the universe and the earth. He creates creatures in His image to rule over it in His name, but they reject Him and go their own way. Rather than destroy them and start over, He is patient with them and begins His plan to rescue mankind.

Regarding the logic of this.    The OT also begins with a perfect omniscient (and omnipotent) God who knew that His creatures would "reject Him".    Thus, logically, His plan was to create creatures who would reject Him and then later would "rescue mankind".

Adam, Eve, et. al. were created by God who knew they would reject Him and that He would then punish them and all of their progeny and that later on He would "rescue mankind" (after destroying almost all life on the planet in a great flood).

Sound to me like a 'plan' dreamed up by fallible men looking for spectacular effect.    An all-powerful entity with perfect knowledge of past, present and future has, per the Bible, intentionally created creatures He knew would fail and knew He would punish (and then bring to the brink of extinction) only to have them reproduce like crazy and go right back to all sorts of sinful activities per their nature.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.41  Drakkonis  replied to  Jack_TX @7.3.37    2 years ago
To be fair, exclusive reliance on the Bible is a very protestant mindset.

True. However, without involving what I have faith in at all, what sense would it make to do otherwise? What I mean is, if you have in your possession something that defines what a thing is and believe what it says about that thing, why would I do anything else, given the nature of the subject? 

It seems to me that the offense I am guilty of to many here is that I am stating something definite that applies to all, whereas they seem to believe something along the lines of each person gets to create their own reality. That is, pinning Christianity down to a specific thing offends because it restricts the definition. 

Right now, it seems as if there is a battle within our country between those who believe there is a concrete reality and those who believe reality is whatever you want it to be. I've watched you participate in NT for a long time. I know which side you're on, even if your beliefs aren't the same as mine. I know you know what I speak of, regardless of whether you agree with it. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.42  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
 Did Jews kill Jesus? It says they did. 

Drakk', I really had not plans to get pulled into your 'orbit' since you don't want me in it, but damn-discussion expansion is needed. Technically, Romans killed Jesus the Christ, as forced collaborators with the intent and will of the Sanhedrin. This nuance is important.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.43  sandy-2021492  replied to  Jack_TX @7.3.31    2 years ago

He himself admits that his comments are abusive in the eyes of most here.  I believe there is a verse somewhere that says "As ye sow, so shall ye reap."  Make bigoted comments, have your comments called out as bigoted.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.44  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.35    2 years ago
This I disagree with and, since I do...

Then where does one turn to get this clear divine direction?

I can't answer your question according to the terms you set. 

Why not?   There are no terms (intentionally) set by me.   My question is very simple:  "So how, exactly, do you propose people determine what is really good or evil?"

The problem I see is that you don't understand what the Bible says. 

Good grief.

What words of Paul, Peter or James, for instance, would lead you to believe that Christians would think they could reinstitute slavery and be right with God? 

Nowhere in the Bible does God state that slavery is immoral yet there are myriad versus where God acknowledges and condones slavery ... and even establishes divine rules for proper enslavement.   If God does not consider slavery immoral then He has done a remarkably bad job of communicating this critical element of objective morality.

Again, it isn't what you believe but why you believe what you do that is taken on faith. 

I addressed why I am persuaded certain things are likely true and others likely false.    You ignored that and simply repeated your complaint.

The basic meaning of the word is defined...  "Faith: complete trust or confidence in someone or something."

First of all, when a person speaks of faith in a religious context the above meaning is NOT what is assumed by readers.   It is sophistry to use the word 'faith' in a religious context while claiming to be using the generic definition.

Second, using even the generic definition, I do not have complete trust or confidence in any human being.   That is, it does not matter what a person claims, it matters what they can evidence.   It is the 'data' that matters, not the person.     Further, I do not have complete trust or confidence in even the scientific method (the most likely 'something').   We know the method is imperfect.   So anything we get from science is taken as an approximation to truth based on some confidence level.   The confidence is a result of the quality of the data, the verifications / challenges that have taken place, and the accuracy of the predictions.   It is not a complete trust or confidence but rather a level of confidence based on the most objective factors human beings have devised to date:  empirical data, logic, verification, falsification, prediction.

Faith in the religious sense, in contrast, is indeed complete trust or confidence in someone (religious authority figures) or something (the Bible, Qur'an, etc.).

Two very different usages of the word 'faith' with very different meaning and consequences.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.45  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
I don't consider the RCC, Mormons, JW's and others like them as actual Christian churches because although they will tell you they believe in Jesus Christ as savior, what they mean by that is very different from what the Bible says and what mainline protestant churches believe.

So the 1.2 billion Catholics, the nearly 17 million Mormons and 19 million JW's aren't really "Christians" because they don't believe in Christ the way you do?

Well aren't we lucky to have apparently found the next Messiah on earth in you who can magically determine who is or isn't righteous and who is or isn't a Christian. /s

Here's a rope and pully to get that rafter out of your eye...

"7 Judge not, that ye be not judged. For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?" - Matthew 7:1-3

 
 
 
evilone
Professor Guide
7.3.46  evilone  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.36    2 years ago
If you think so it would only demonstrate you don't understand what constitutes the No True Scotsman fallacy. If so, don't feel alone. Most don't understand it, in my experience. 

Sorry buddy, but you don't seem to have a clue what logic is, let alone how to define a logical fallacy- 

So, to at least some degree, being a Scotsman is a defined thing not open to interpretation.

You are so far afield...

Here's the simplest example:

Joe: No Scotsman would drink coffee with sugar.

Sally: My uncle Semus, born in Edibourgh drinks his coffee with sugar.

Joe: No true Scotsman would ever put sugar in their coffee.

What Joe is trying to do in the above example is the same thing you are doing - defining what it means to be a "Real" Scotsman (or in your case "Real" Christian). The dictionary defines Christian as: 

Chris·tian
/ˈkrisCHən/
adjective
  1. relating to or professing Christianity or its teachings.
    "the Christian Church"
noun
  1. a person who has received Christian baptism or is a believer in Christianity.
    "a born-again Christian"

You can, of course, point out where you think some Christians could be wrong, but you can't logically redefine words for your own benefit.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.47  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.29    2 years ago
The OT begins with a loving and patient God, who creates the universe and the earth. He creates creatures in His image to rule over it in His name, but they reject Him and go their own way. Rather than destroy them and start over, He is patient with them and begins His plan to rescue mankind. He creates a covenant with one man. Later, He makes a covenant with that man's descendants, giving them laws by which they will be acceptable to Him, but they keep breaking it over and over again. God disciplines them but keeps giving them opportunities to repent. Sometimes they do but eventually they break it again. The message of the OT, in one respect, seems clear. God is holy and He will not accept anything less than holy into His kingdom. It is also clear that man is unable to meet those terms. 

This 'telling' of the narrative is quite interesting, because clearly God is more. . . patient. . . with humanity than some Christians are with their fellow Christians they won't even 'reply' to even though they can see and hear from them. I have no compunction (guilt), as I have extended my 'hand,' quite often. :)

What Would Jesus Do? Jesus was patient with humanity too. Else at this point-there would be no faith to hold on to or misinterpret as the case may be!

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.48  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  devangelical @7.3.33    2 years ago
gee, maybe you can enlighten us here by ranking all religions from nearest to and farthest from god.

I think it's clear he considers ALL other religions, denominations and sects to be inferior to his own brand of protestant Christianity. He's a Protestant Christian Supremacist. And I wouldn't be surprised to find out that his brand of Protestantism is likely 90+% white.

" Protestantism’s troubling history with white supremacy in the US"

Notions linking “whiteness” to Protestantism were further entrenched in the second half of the 19th century, when immigrants from Ireland, Germany and Italy came to the U.S.   bringing Catholicism with them.

These non-Protestant, non-Anglo immigrants   were seen as “less white”   than more established Anglo communities and were subject to significant discrimination.

Only after assimilation into Anglo cultural norms, especially speaking English, were they granted the social and economic privileges that came with “whiteness.” Yet many continued to experience   anti-Catholic discrimination.

And the U.S. continued to see other immigrant groups – Latino, Jewish, Asian and Middle Eastern – racialized, discriminated against and set as perpetual “foreigners” in contrast to the norm of the white Christian American.

The supposed superiority of white Protestantism, supported by interpretations of biblical texts, was for centuries used to   justify the institution of slavery.

Biblical texts were also used to   justify segregation and Jim Crow. Even the   Ku Klux Klan rooted their ideology of white supremacy in Protestant   theology and the Bible.

Protestantism's troubling history with white supremacy in the US (theconversation.com)

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.49  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.32    2 years ago
In the end, it seems you are upset with me because I don't go along with the wisdom of this generation.

Better than just getting possibly upset, Trout G', would do better to point out to that Catholics have more than our 'mainline protestant' Bible. They have deuterocanonical scriptures, aka: Apocrypha. 

Furthermore, while "Apocrypha" did not make the 'council' canonization into our 'mainline' protestant bible, the argument goes the Roman Catholic Church 'popped' out protestant belief (systems plural), similar to this 'birth' given Christianity out of Judaism.

 
 
 
Gsquared
Professor Principal
7.3.50  Gsquared  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
Did Jews kill Jesus?

Crucifixion was a Roman punishment.   The ancient Jews stoned people to death.

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
7.3.51  Jack_TX  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.41    2 years ago
However, without involving what I have faith in at all, what sense would it make to do otherwise?

I'm simply stating that if we use completely protestant interpretations of everything, we will unsurprisingly end up with very protestant definitions and conclusions.   Whether or not we adhere to things like Papal epiphany or church tradition, they are certainly meaningful to millions of Christians worldwide.

It seems to me that the offense I am guilty of to many here is that I am stating something definite that applies to all, whereas they seem to believe something along the lines of each person gets to create their own reality.

Your offense is being an infidel.  You reject the chosen religion of Liberal Politics, so you must be condemned.   

Make no mistake, for many of the people you see here, Liberal Politics is most definitely their religion.  It is the source of their moral code, it is how they decide right from wrong and differentiate good people from evil ones.  They don't understand your faith and don't want to.  They will misrepresent the Bible, Christian doctrine, and your statements.  It is far easier to attack your beliefs than it is to defend their own.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.52  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Jack_TX @7.3.51    2 years ago
Whether or not we adhere to things like Papal epiphany or church tradition, they are certainly meaningful to millions of Christians worldwide.

The debate over which Christian denomination "gets it right" reminds me of some '30 somethings' still living in their parents basement arguing online about which are more powerful, Marvel or DC Universe superheroes...

Your offense is being an infidel.  You reject the chosen religion of Liberal Politics, so you must be condemned.

All I'd love to hear is a smattering of humility and words to the effect of "All other religions and denominations, even atheists, could be right and I could be wrong, but I choose to believe in my brand of religion because it makes me feel good and that's good enough for me. It's not up to me who lives or dies or possibly goes on to an afterlife of either ecstasy or suffering, I am not the judge and jury and would never wish eternal suffering on even my worst enemy".

It's not about rejecting "the chosen Religion of Liberal politics", it's about not being so damn judgmental of others and refraining from proclaiming themselves "victims" because their brand of Protestant Christianity is no longer put up on a pedestal in American society.

Unless one can definitively prove their brand of religion is better than any other brand/religion, they should probably refrain from proclaiming their brand/religion superior to all others, especially when they can't even prove the God they claim to worship exists.

Liberal Politics is most definitely their religion

Nope.

It is the source of their moral code, it is how they decide right from wrong and differentiate good people from evil ones.

Nope. And who the fuck are "they" anyway? Anyone who doesn't accept your brand of Christianity as truth? Anyone who dares say "Happy Holidays!" to you instead of "Merry Christmas!"?

All moral codes are based on whether an action harms or helps a human. Only with religion do we find the justification for harming non-believers as being "moral".

They don't understand your faith and don't want to.  They will misrepresent the Bible, Christian doctrine, and your statements.

Nope on all counts. His Protestant Christian Supremacy is easily understood as he's basically stated it multiple times over. To "misrepresent" the bible would require there to be a definitive interpretation/translation which clearly there is not. Misrepresenting Christian doctrine would require a definitive Christian doctrine to misrepresent. Instead we find over 2000 different Christian denominations all with their own doctrines. And his statements could not be clearer so there's no need to misrepresent them, most of the time he's literally being quoted.

It is far easier to attack your beliefs than it is to defend their own.

Well that's true for just about any debate. It's always easier to pick out the flaws in your opponents argument than it is to patch up and defend the holes in your own. But for someone to simply refuse to accept even the possibility of any flaws in their own argument while constantly launching attacks on others as he has done is childish. It's the "I'm rubber and you're glue" elementary school playground defense.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.53  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.44    2 years ago
Then where does one turn to get this clear divine direction?

Seriously? What did I say I did not agree with? 

and there is no clear divine direction.
This I disagree with and, since I do...

I disagree with your claim there is no divine direction. While I didn't specifically state it, I obviously think the Bible provides the direction. Therefore...

Why not?   There are no terms (intentionally) set by me.

... is obviously false since you claimed there is no divine direction when you know I believe otherwise. While you may believe that, I do not and have no need to restrict myself to your view. In other words, you structured your question to discount or ignore that the Bible does provide divine direction and that I answer your question on some other basis.  

Nowhere in the Bible does God state that slavery is immoral yet there are myriad versus where God acknowledges and condones slavery ... and even establishes divine rules for proper enslavement.   If God does not consider slavery immoral then He has done a remarkably bad job of communicating this critical element of objective morality.

You don't seem to understand that this is your point of view rather than a statement of fact. More specifically, it is your judgement of God's actions concerning slavery based on nothing more than your concept of morality. Furthermore, it ignores the possibility that God can be against slavery yet still allow it because it serves a moral purpose to do so, whether you personally understand it or not. 

As an example, I give you the story of Joseph in Genisis. Joseph was sold into slavery by his own brothers. An institution not created by God, but by man. In spite of the horrible injustice created by his own brothers, God used it to save the very people who sold him. And not simply for their sake but for us all, because eventually, through the line of Jacob, Joseph's father, Jesus would be born, who would save all who would put their faith in him. 

I addressed why I am persuaded certain things are likely true and others likely false.    You ignored that and simply repeated your complaint.

No, you didn't. You addressed what you believe, not why you believe it. For instance, you believe that the Bible is the words of people, not God, because you see logical contradictions and scientific inaccuracies. I read the same words but arrive at a different conclusion. Therefore, the words in the Bible cannot be the source of our difference but, rather, the assumptions and presuppositions with which we approach the words. When I say your position is one of faith as much as mine is, I am speaking of the assumptions and presuppositions with which you examine the words of the Bible. In fact, your entire approach at life. as is mine. You have faith that your approach is the correct one, even though you can't objectively prove that it is correct. 

First of all, when a person speaks of faith in a religious context the above meaning is NOT what is assumed by readers.   It is sophistry to use the word 'faith' in a religious context while claiming to be using the generic definition.

Except it isn't I who uses the word in a religious context. It is you who is attempting to force that interpretation. I am simply using it in its plainest meaning. 

Second, using even the generic definition, I do not have complete trust or confidence in any human being

Okay. Never said you did, so not sure why you're going there. 

Further, I do not have complete trust or confidence in even the scientific method (the most likely 'something').

Um, now who's actually using sophistry? While what you say here is undoubtedly true, it's pretty clear you trust it enough to inform what you say and do. That is, even though you admit it could be in error, it's still the platform from which you argue.

Faith in the religious sense, in contrast, is indeed complete trust or confidence in someone (religious authority figures) or something (the Bible, Qur'an, etc.).

LOL! You don't know what you're talking about. If only what you say here were true! Unfortunately, it isn't. People of faith have doubts as much as you do. And they are as sure as you are. 

Two very different usages of the word 'faith' with very different meaning and consequences.

I disagree. The only difference between them is one is generic and the other focuses on a particular belief. It would literally be the same if the second concerned faith in science or wishful thinking. In other words, the second is simply a subset of the first, not something "very different". 

In any case, you're making this harder than it really is. You have faith that your view of reality is the correct one, even though you can't empirically prove it. Same as my view. It's really that simple. Suppose this argument was about whether we are real or simply simulations in some hyperintelligent alien's supercomputer. How could we know which is which? We can't. Comes down to faith. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.54  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.40    2 years ago

The point of the bible is this: The prophets and apostles never claimed to be telling the whole driving motivation of God. Paul, even wrote, we see 'darkly.' That is, there is plenty about the character of God we can not dis cipher from our limited text (books of the bible) and location (on Earth) in a universe of universes. For instance, I 'crushed' a flying bug on my computer screen recently and immediately regretted it. The bug, tiny, inconsequential to me, was undertaking its 'day' on the expanse of my 27" monitor of light and 'scribbles' and then it was mashed to death. That is its perspective. Mine being I continue on 'today' after having ended its time and space as a being. I have a better sense of what goes on in the world than it does, by definition of 'placement' as a human being and one who has more continuance.

So what am I saying? If there is God, then God  has a 360° degree grasp on why all the universes exist and more to the point why Earth has to 'ordeal' in this manner to bring about some plan its inhabitants can only play a limited role in helping to punctuate or achieve.

(I know, I know. That is a 'mouthful' of rhetoric, indeed. Hopeful that it conveys a smidgen of something on reflection.)

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.55  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.41    2 years ago

I don't know what you just said there, but it did not touch on or 'cover' what you think it could sufficiently.

The fact is, as I have been suggesting and stating our Christian faith is what it is; written as it is written; accepted by Christians as 'concrete' teaching and we move in/out/through it.

We 'defend' it, because we CONTRACTED to it/what is on its pages. Others, are CONTRACTED to other sacred doctrines and applications, and world philosophies.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.56  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.45    2 years ago
So the 1.2 billion Catholics, the nearly 17 million Mormons and 19 million JW's aren't really "Christians" because they don't believe in Christ the way you do?

[deleted] Where did I say they weren't Christian because they don't believe what I do? And are you really going with an ad populum fallacy? 

Well aren't we lucky to have apparently found the next Messiah on earth in you who can magically determine who is or isn't righteous and who is or isn't a Christian. /s

Sarcasm. i guess that's the best you can do when you don't have a real counter argument. 

"7Judge not, that ye be not judged.For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?" - Matthew 7:1-3

If I applied that verse the way you do then I couldn't ever condemn the actions of one who rapes and murders a seven year old child. And I bet you completely miss the way I just worded that sentence. It says I condemned the actions, not the person. The person I leave to God. 

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.57  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.26    2 years ago
The parable wasn't about a person's worth. The parable was about God willingness to forgive and take a person back as long as they turned away from their sinful life and came back to Him. 

Of course it was.  The father (God) was watching and waiting anxiously for his son, who had NOT yet returned to him (was still defying him) to do so (was still dross, according to your interpretation).  Do we wait anxiously for that which we find to be worthless?

I don't consider the RCC, Mormons, JW's and others like them as actual Christian churches because although they will tell you they believe in Jesus Christ as savior, what they mean by that is very different from what the Bible says and what mainline protestant churches believe.

And members of those churches would likely consider that to be religious bigotry.  Wars were fought over this shit, Drakk.

I'm not going to tell you less than the truth because of that.

"Your opinion" does not equal "truth".

More hypocrisy. Do you not oppress pedophiles? Zoophiles?

Preventing people from harming others isn't oppression, Drakk.  Women don't harm anybody by being women.  Black people don't harm anybody by having more melanin in their skin.  LGBTQ people don't harm anybody by being LGBTQ.  Pedophiles who do not act on their pedophilia aren't harming anybody, and are free to go about their lives so long as they keep it that way.  We prevent harmful actions.  We do not punish for innate characteristics.

I understand you'd rather not see the difference.

For the Christian, at least, we do have some standard to which we can point to justify calling Catholics idolaters or Jews the killer of Jesus.

Jews killed Jesus?  Do tell.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.58  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.53    2 years ago
While I didn't specifically state it, I obviously think the Bible provides the direction. Therefore...

That is what I expected you to say.    How is it possible for the Bible to provide the direction for objective morality when it is demonstrably interpreted in wildly different ways?

I doubt there is a work that has more diverse / contradiction interpretations than the Bible.    Explain how, in your mind, it is possible for the Bible to be the mechanism whereby God clearly communicates objective morality.

... is obviously false since you claimed there is no divine direction when you know I believe otherwise. 

So?   That is not setting any terms for you.   I have made an argument.   You then are free to make yours.

In other words, you structured your question to discount or ignore that the Bible does provide divine direction and that I answer your question on some other basis.  

Just stop this, Drakk.  You want to debate the style of questions and presumed intent and I am interested in you simply answering direct questions.   How does the Bible communicate objective morality?   This DOES imply that objective morality is a singularity and thus it would necessarily be consistently understood.   So the objective morality that you get from the Bible would necessarily be the same objective morality that another believer would get.   If believers 'get' different objective moralities then clearly the Bible does not clearly communicate objective morality.

You don't seem to understand that this is your point of view rather than a statement of fact. 

It is a fact that the Bible does not condemn slavery.   It is a fact that there is no "thou shalt not own another person as property".    It is a fact that God acknowledges slavery (matter-of-fact) and then goes on to express rules of proper enslavement.   

Furthermore, it ignores the possibility that God can be against slavery yet still allow it because it serves a moral purpose to do so, whether you personally understand it or not. 

Okay, allow this possibility.   Let's presume that God is against slavery yet allows it (without saying a word to the contrary yet providing rules for it) for reasons known only to Him.   So how do you get the clear objective moral statement from God that owning another human being as property is immoral?    Stated again for emphasis:  where do you find the "thou shalt not own another human being as property" objective moral statement?   Did God leave this critical moral factor out from the medium whereby He communicates objective morality (and not just to ancient men but to modern men reading the Bible)?

For instance, you believe that the Bible is the words of people, not God, because you see logical contradictions and scientific inaccuracies. I read the same words but arrive at a different conclusion. Therefore, the words in the Bible cannot be the source of our difference but, rather, the assumptions and presuppositions with which we approach the words. 

You and I both know that the Bible was written by ancient men.   Fact.   You go beyond that, without any evidence, and proclaim the Bibledivine.   I rebut your claim of divinity by pointing out the contradictions of the Bible.   Instead of explaining how contradictions can possibly exist in the Word of a perfect God, you resort to 'we just read it with different assumptions and presuppositions'.    I follow the evidence and the evidence does not suggest that the Bible is anything more than the work of ancient men.   Indeed, the evidence argues that the Bible is clearly the work of ancient men.    Its errors and contradictions are what one would expect from the authors given what they knew.

You flat-out ignore the errors and contradictions and simply deem the Bible the divine source of objective morality.

You have faith that your approach is the correct one, even though you can't objectively prove that it is correct. 

You continue to equate 'faith' as used in a religious sense with 'faith' in a very general sense (and I do not even agree with the general sense).   That is sophistry and it bugs me that you employ such tactics.   I am convinced that my approach yields a better approximation to truth then merely accepting words in an ancient book that have no empirical evidence, are contradictory, and have no predictive power and thus no verification.  

I am convinced that following the evidence to wherever it leads is superior in terms of approximating truth than mere acceptance of authority.

I am simply using it in its plainest meaning.

You are using the word in its most general meaning with the intention of equating faith (most general possible meaning) with faith (religious).   You are clearly attempting to argue (hell, you wrote it) that my 'faith' in science (language I do not support as I noted) is equivalent to your faith in religion.   That is cliché sophistry and I would have thought us well past that point.

Never said you did, so not sure why you're going there. 

I am breaking down the definition you provided for 'faith' and illustrating how it does not apply to me.

While what you say here is undoubtedly true, it's pretty clear you trust it enough to inform what you say and do. That is, even though you admit it could be in error, it's still the platform from which you argue.

So how is what you wrote different from what I wrote (and indeed for you to label it sophistry)?:  "Further, I do not have complete trust or confidence in even the scientific method (the most likely 'something')."    It essentially states that I do NOT blindly accept every finding of science.   Thus I do not have COMPLETE trust or confidence even in the scientific method.   The obvious reason why (as I explained) is that human beings do make errors and not all scientists are honest.    To wit, the word 'faith' even in its most general sense, does not reflect my position on science.

Science is typically the platform from which I argue (actually, my platform is evidence and logic) so that is true.   What is NOT true is your translating this into "complete trust or confidence".   That is quite incorrect and you should have known that by now.

You don't know what you're talking about.

You are intentionally missing my point.   Of course most religious people have doubts and do not believe everything they hear.   I was contrasting two approaches:   one that is based on evidence, logic, verification, falsification, predictability versus one based on mere acceptance of authority.    Most religious people will not believe every word professed by their religion but those that they do believe are based on faith:  "complete trust or confidence in someone (religious authority figures) or something (the Bible, Qur'an, etc.)".    You supplied the definition.

Nothing new here:   religion = accept as true based on authority,   science = accept as likely true based on demonstration of same

In any case, you're making this harder than it really is. You have faith that your view of reality is the correct one, even though you can't empirically prove it. Same as my view. It's really that simple. 

Drakk, I am not going to allow you to wedge 'faith' into science and in so doing claim that religious faith is the same as being persuaded by the evidence, verification, predictability, of a scientific theory.

Suppose this argument was about whether we are real or simply simulations in some hyperintelligent alien's supercomputer. How could we know which is which? We can't. Comes down to faith. 

Good example.   My answer is that we have no way of knowing (as you noted).   That is, my answer is 'we cannot tell'.   There is no faith there.   Now if your answer is 'I know we are not a simulation because I just know' then that would be faith.


Going back to an opening example.    You and I agree that the Bible was written by ancient men.   The evidence overwhelmingly supports our mutual conclusion.

You go one step further and state that the Bible conveys divine truth because the authors were inspired by God.   This is where we part company.   I see no evidence that supports your claim (and quite a bit that challenges it).    Your next step is pure faith.   I do not make that step because I do not operate on faith.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.59  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.53    2 years ago

Per @7.3.58, these are the pivotal questions I have asked you to address:

  1. How is it possible for the Bible to be the mechanism whereby God clearly communicates objective morality (i.e. provide the direction for objective morality) when it is demonstrably interpreted in wildly different ways? 

  2. Where do you find the "thou shalt not own another human being as property" objective moral statement?    God discusses slavery repeatedly yet fails to ever deem it objectively immoral.   Does this mean that slavery is objectively moral?   How can anyone possibly know from the Bible that it is objectively immoral to own another human being as property?
 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.60  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.54    2 years ago
The prophets and apostles never claimed to be telling the whole driving motivation of God.

Understood.   But I posed a problem:  the Bible contradicts itself.    Why would a work that is self-contradicting be considered the divine Word of a perfect, omniscient God?

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.61  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.57    2 years ago
Of course it was.

Really? Then why does the father in the parable say that the son was lost but now is found? What does being lost mean in the parable? If the son has worth regardless, what point is there in his return to the father? Truth is, you're reading the parable to mean what you want it to mean. Who wouldn't want it to mean that we're okay with God no matter what? Yeah, I'm not perfect but I want to be and that should be enough, right? But all that does is put your own will first, rather than God's. 

And, if you're honest, isn't that really why you aren't a Christian anymore, if ever you were? You prefer your will, your desires, over God's? 

"Your opinion" does not equal "truth".

I agree. But if you think all I am doing is giving you my opinion rather than relating what the Bible says, then prove it by producing a Biblical counter argument. 

Preventing people from harming others isn't oppression, Drakk.

That sounds nice, doesn't it? But doesn't it depend on what constitutes harm? Apparently, you believe people get to make their own moral rules, assuming it doesn't harm anyone else according to some standard you hold. Why is your standard the standard? Who are you to say the LGTBQ community isn't harming anyone? 

Maybe you think I'm playing a game here but I'm not. I'm dead serious about what I am saying. There's no room for games. You may recall past arguments I've had with TiG about morality. There are only two positions concerning morality. For the classic Atheist, morality is simply a designation for what an individual or society considers proper behavior. It' isn't based on any objective source and can change on the whims of that individual or society. For the theist, morality is determined by God and is unchangeable as the laws of nature. 

So, when you say preventing people from harming others isn't oppression I can say I agree but at the same time, know we do not agree what constitutes harm. To you, opposition to the LGTBQ agenda is harming their desires for what they want for themselves. To me, it is opposition to what separates people from God. 

Also, because I oppose such things as the LGTBQ agenda, it seems to me you attach all manner of opposition, expressed by anyone in any manner, to me. That is not the case and is unfair. For instance, there are those who claim that it would be Biblical to execute those of the LGTBQ community, and because there are, you load that onto me. At least, that is the impression you give, in spite of the fact all I have ever said about the LGTBQ community is that they are not following God's design for us or His will. 

Women don't harm anybody by being women.

I agree. 

Black people don't harm anybody by having more melanin in their skin.

I agree. 

LGBTQ people don't harm anybody by being LGBTQ.

 I disagree. It is against God's will for mankind to do such things. 

Pedophiles who do not act on their pedophilia aren't harming anybody, and are free to go about their lives so long as they keep it that way.

I agree. 

We prevent harmful actions.  We do not punish for innate characteristics.

Again, I agree. However, in the list you provided there are different categories you attempt to present as one. In the first two, you list physical characteristics that aren't dependent on interpretation by any sane person. The second two are not physical characteristics but, rather, predilections for certain things. In other words, behavioral phenomena. In the case of the LGTBQ community, you give them a pass because of your selective sense of morality but do not do so for the pedophile, for the same reason. 

Regardless, we are left with the same question. What recommends your sense of morality over mine? And please don't present some chain of reasoning as to why you think your morality is valid. It would be just what you, personally, feel is valid. Unless you are prepared to claim you are the arbiter of morality it would be meaningless. Morality is either a real thing in the sense that natural laws are, like gravity, or it's simply a designation for what a particular person or society believes is right. If it is the second, you have no basis for saying my morality is wrong. 

Jews killed Jesus?  Do tell.

If you really have read the Bible, why would I need to? Why would I need to tell you that Pilot wanted to release Jesus because he found him to be innocent but was forced by the Jews to crucify him? You would already know this and not ask this question. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.62  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.59    2 years ago
How is it possible for the Bible to be the mechanism whereby God clearly communicates objective morality (i.e. provide the direction for objective morality) when it is demonstrably interpreted in wildly different ways? 

I imagine you think you are asking a simple, straightforward question here. You're not. It assumes that, if there is a problem with God communicating objective morality through the Bible, the problem rests with God and the Bible rather than those who read it. Since you are a proponent of critical thinking and logic, why is it you don't consider the problem is on our side rather than God's? 

Take the Kenneth Copeland's of the world. Even you, who I do not think understands the Bible at all, recognizes that he uses the Bible for his own ends rather than God's. Do you think that invalidates God's word because he does? Is your thinking something like, the Bible can't be true because, Copeland? 

Within the mainline Protestant world, the Bible isn't interpreted in 'wildly different ways.' There are differences but they are mostly on issues that don't concern salvation. And those differences aren't wild. 

Where do you find the "thou shalt not own another human being as property" objective moral statement?    God discusses slavery repeatedly yet fails to ever deem it objectively immoral.

That would be incorrect. You are basing your argument on the fact that it isn't stated in the manner the Ten Commandments were and that slavery is always evil. It isn't. I myself was a slave for 20 years. I was a slave voluntarily and I don't regret it or hold my former masters as evil because of it. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.63  seeder  CB  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.57    2 years ago
Pedophiles who do not act on their pedophilia aren't harming anybody, and are free to go about their lives so long as they keep it that way.  We prevent harmful actions.  We do not punish for innate characteristics.

While this one is definitely beyond the scope of this discussion, it is something which society will have to deal with someday. Why? Because pedophiles do appear to need somebody 'fit' to their liking in this life. As a homosexual, I have long endured the hardship of society that 'detested' me. I can pity these folks who appear to born 'this' way in a world that detest them.

Not now, nevertheless. It's simply too big a discussion for a 'foot-note.'

Okay, and frankly, I don't even know where one should grasp its 'ends.'  But, it sits there. . . here. . . haunting society's capacity to understand those who suffer this. . . affliction. . . and a society who truly, deeply, love and want the best opportunities for their children.

Well, I just stepped into the wading in of a 'deep' conversation pool. . . getting out if it right about NOW!

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.64  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.61    2 years ago
Then why does the father in the parable say that the son was lost but now is found?

You're the one saying that those who haven't repented are dross - worthless.  Before the prodigal son had repented, had his father stopped waiting and hoping for him?  No.  Do we wait and hope for that which is worthless in our eyes?  No.  To his father, the prodigal son was not worthless, even while he was prodigal.

And, if you're honest, isn't that really why you aren't a Christian anymore, if ever you were? You prefer your will, your desires, over God's?

How can I not prefer my will over that of a being I do not believe exists, Drakk?  Do you look for commandments regarding your behavior in works of fiction?  If so, do you think that's rational?

Relating what the Bible says is also not relating "truth".  It's just relaying what somebody claims is the truth, without support.

But doesn't it depend on what constitutes harm?

I would say that the best person to ask whether an action is harmful is the (supposed) object of that action.  Women will generally tell you that they are harmed physically, emotionally, financially, and socially by patriarchal religions.  Black people will generally tell you that they are harmed physically, emotionally, financially, and socially by the use of religion to justify racism (and in particular, race-based slavery).  LGBTQ people will generally tell you that they are harmed physically, emotionally, financially, and socially by the use of religion to justify bigotry against them.

The victims of pedophiles will tell you that they have been harmed physically, emotionally, socially, and (sometimes) financially by pedophiles.

I have not been harmed in any way by another person being female (or male), black, or LGBTQ.  Nor have you.

To you, opposition to the LGTBQ agenda is harming their desires for what they want for themselves. To me, it is opposition to what separates people from God. 

That's not for you to determine.  Nobody should be expected to reference the supposed will of a very likely imaginary being to determine whether their existence is moral.

My morality is based on not causing harm.  Yours is ok with causing harm, so long as it's to the "right" people, as determined by a tribe of warlike people who lived millennia ago, who cobbled together the myths of their neighbors to fashion a god who just happened to agree with them about who the "right" people to hurt were.

Why would I need to tell you that Pilot wanted to release Jesus because he found him to be innocent but was forced by the Jews to crucify him? You would already know this and not ask this question. 

The Jews were under the thumb of Rome.  They were in no position to force Pilate to do anything.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.65  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.60    2 years ago

Do you have one of those contradictions to put forward? How about your best contradiction and let's consider it. Otherwise, I can't span the 'books' trying to figure out what I should hone in on stating.

For instance, I think you are seeing this as a contradiction: 7.3.40 . . .

An all-powerful entity with perfect knowledge of past, present and future has, per the Bible, intentionally created creatures He knew would fail and knew He would punish (and then bring to the brink of extinction) only to have them reproduce like crazy and go right back to all sorts of sinful activities per their nature.

But, should I deal with it or wait for 'another'?

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.66  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.62    2 years ago
I myself was a slave for 20 years. I was a slave voluntarily

If you could leave anytime and were there voluntarily, then you weren't a slave.

Slave: noun - a person who is forced to work for and obey another and is considered to be their property.

Not only does the bible not condemn slavery, it condones it in very specific ways. And not only that, it also makes racist distinctions between how slavery of Jews, which was more indentured servitude, was to be different than slavery of foreigners. The Israelite's were told they could take slaves from the foreign cities they conquered and own them and their children in perpetuity and they could beat them as they wished as long as they didn't kill them. With Israelite 'bond slaves', most often due to inability to repay debt, there was a limit to how many years they could be indentured, their children were not enslaved, and they were not to be beaten.

If your brother with you becomes so poor that he sells himself to you, you are not to make him serve like a bond slave. Instead, he is to serve with you like a hired servant or a traveler who lives with you, until the year of jubilee. Then he and his children with him may leave to return to his family and his ancestor’s inheritance. Since they’re my servants whom I’ve brought out of the land of Egypt, they are not to be sold as slaves." - Leviticus 25:39-42

"There will always be poor people in the land. Therefore I command you to be openhanded toward your fellow Israelites who are poor and needy in your land. If any of your people–Hebrew men or women–sell themselves to you and serve you six years, in the seventh year you must let them go free. And when you release them, do not send them away empty-handed. Supply them liberally from your flock, your threshing floor and your winepress. Give to them as the LORD your God has blessed you." - Deuteronomy 15:11-14

20 “Anyone who beats their male or female slave with a rod must be punished if the slave dies as a direct result, 21 but they are not to be punished if the slave recovers after a day or two, since the slave is their property." - Exodus 21:20-21

"44 Your menservants and maidservants shall come from the nations around you, from whom you may purchase them. 45 You may also purchase them from the foreigners residing among you or their clans living among you who are born in your land. These may become your property46 You may leave them to your sons after you to inherit as property; you can make them slaves for life. But as for your brothers, the Israelites, no man may rule harshly over his brother." Leviticus 45:44-46

Is this truly objective morality?

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.67  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.61    2 years ago
For the theist, morality is determined by God and is unchangeable as the laws of nature. 

And yet those "unchangeables" are reflecting all sorts of odd hues in the present of one man Donald Trump. Trump for several years has been the idea picture of evangelical/fundamentalists 'Cup of tea.'

A more unbridled man ranging to and fro in subjective behavior this nation may not have ever seen! And yet fundamentalists will vote for and probably describe such a man as 'after God's own heart' today and in 2024.

How can that be. It just is.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.68  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.61    2 years ago
To you, opposition to the LGTBQ agenda is harming their desires for what they want for themselves. To me, it is opposition to what separates people from God. 

God dealt with what separates people from God in Jesus' resurrection. You 'pronounced' it here:

7.3.32 The Bible makes it clear that we are saved by Christ's atoning sacrifice alone. The RCC will tell you they believe the same but won't tell you (not right away) that it's also works.

So is the believing LGBTQ member saved by grace alone, or using the RCC approach must 'do/add' something 'workable'? According to your own words you can't have the cake and eat it too!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.69  seeder  CB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.61    2 years ago
LGBTQ people don't harm anybody by being LGBTQ.
 I disagree. It is against God's will for mankind to do such things. 

Then what amount of weigh should your disagreement carry? Your position, okay as you call it God's position is harming homosexuals. So much so that they can not exist in society unmolested and a part of a striving social group because of what God says. And yet, they live long ('insufferable') lives (mentally imprisoned) while heterosexuals enjoy sufficient abandon to love 'hard' for a lifetime. 

This planet is not a prison, no matter what you feel or suggest, Drakk! Better leave LGBTQ alone to enjoy the time they have-since God according to your understanding will not welcome them into "H."  Albeit, in "H" no one is having sexual relations of any kind. 

Jesus even shared there are no marriages happening or 'honored' in "H" either. So . . . .

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.70  seeder  CB  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.64    2 years ago
The Jews were under the thumb of Rome.  They were in no position to force Pilate to do anything.

Powerful comment overall. But, this quote above falls to politics. The assembled Jews threatened to petition (appeal to) Caesar had Pilate denied them crucifixion:

4 Once more Pilate came out and said to the Jews gathered there, “Look, I am bringing him out to you to let you know that I find no basis for a charge against him.” 5 When Jesus came out wearing the crown of thorns and the purple robe, Pilate said to them, “Here is the man!”

6 As soon as the chief priests and their officials saw him, they shouted, “Crucify! Crucify!”

But Pilate answered, “You take him and crucify him. As for me, I find no basis for a charge against him.”

7 The Jewish leaders insisted, “We have a law, and according to that law he must die, because he claimed to be the Son of God.”

8 When Pilate heard this, he was even more afraid, 9 and he went back inside the palace. “Where do you come from?” he asked Jesus, but Jesus gave him no answer. 10 “Do you refuse to speak to me?” Pilate said. “Don’t you realize I have power either to free you or to crucify you?”

11 Jesus answered, “You would have no power over me if it were not given to you from above. Therefore the one who handed me over to you is guilty of a greater sin.”

12 From then on, Pilate tried to set Jesus free, but the Jewish leaders kept shouting, “If you let this man go, you are no friend of Caesar. Anyone who claims to be a king opposes Caesar.”

Pilate was induced to carry out this execution against his will. Still, technically, it was a collaboration between two 'kingdoms.'

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.71  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.62    2 years ago
why is it you don't consider the problem is on our side rather than God's? 

Because God is all-powerful and all-knowing.   Only God would be capable of clearly communicating objective morality to all human beings (creatures with whom He has full creative control).   Surely you believe that God is capable of this task yet when you recognize that this task has NOT been accomplished you do not blame the source but the recipients.  

Why would you even entertain the notion that the failure to consistently communicate God's objective morality lies with human being recipients of the divine message rather than the creator and source of the message:  God?

even you, who I do not think understands the Bible at all,

Don't resort to cheap insults.   

recognizes that he uses the Bible for his own ends rather than God's.

And his interpretation of the Bible is one of countless many.   The Bible, as a tool for clear communication, is (as I have noted) demonstrably flawed.   

Do you think that invalidates God's word because he does? Is your thinking something like, the Bible can't be true because, Copeland? 

I sometimes wonder if you read my comments.   I do not argue that the Bible is not true because people abuse it.   I have argued that the Bible is self-contradicting.    I am looking at the data, not the people.   One example, which I will repeat, is that the Bible defines God as perfect and omniscient yet also defines God as one who can be surprised, persuaded, angered, and saddened.   It is a direct contradiction for an entity with perfect knowledge of the future to be surprised, etc. since He knew exactly what was going to happen (perfect omniscience).  

Copeland, et. al. are irrelevant to my point.

Within the mainline Protestant world, the Bible isn't interpreted in 'wildly different ways.' 

Easy example:  Ken Ham vs. Hugh Ross (or, if you prefer, Francis Collins).    If you have not observed any debates between these gentlemen then I recommend you do and note the profound difference in interpretation.   Yeah, they all believe God is the creator, etc. but their interpretations of the Bible are staggeringly different.   And we are talking about interpretations of the Bible, not the abstract nature of the Christian God.

That would be incorrect.  You are basing your argument on the fact that it isn't stated in the manner the Ten Commandments were and that slavery is always evil.

My argument is that nowhere in the entire Bible does God condemn the owning of human beings as property.    If this is incorrect, cite the passage where God deems owning another human being to be immoral.

It isn't. I myself was a slave for 20 years. I was a slave voluntarily and I don't regret it or hold my former masters as evil because of it. 

Equating military service to slavery ('owning another human being as property') shows that you have no answer.   You are again playing fast and loose with words ... now expanding the word 'slavery' to encompass voluntary service.

Note how many times I stated 'owning another person as property'.   I do that to mitigate the feeble rebuttals based on word games.

Finally, do you expect anyone to buy the notion that the slaves of ancient time were all indentured servants ... voluntary work units ... rather than property that can be, for example, part of the inheritance passed to children?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.72  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.65    2 years ago
But, should I deal with it or wait for 'another'?

I would love for you to deal with that example.

 
 
 
Dismayed Patriot
Professor Quiet
7.3.73  Dismayed Patriot  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.72    2 years ago
I would love for you to deal with that example.

And don't forget to include this in the contradiction:

"5 Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great upon the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was altogether evil all the time. 6 And the LORD regretted that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart." - Genesis 6:5-6

How exactly does that square with an all-powerful entity with perfect knowledge of past, present and future? Also, you'll notice Moses attributes some other human conditions to this all-powerful immortal entity, grief and a heart.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.74  sandy-2021492  replied to  CB @7.3.70    2 years ago
Pilate was induced to carry out this execution against his will.

Well, opinions vary on that, even among the writers of the Gospel (who were not Matthew, Mark, Luke, nor John).  

Regardless, all of the Gospels agree on one point - Roman soldiers, not Jews, killed Jesus.  So biblically speaking, saying the Jews killed Jesus is incorrect.

And when those soldiers killed Jesus, they didn't just go through the motions.  They mocked and tortured him.  Well, at least in three of the Gospels.  The fourth, not so much.  That doesn't sound like a group of people being forced to carry out an execution.  That sounds like a group of people who are enjoying carrying out an execution.  If it actually happened that way, that is.

 
 
 
Trout Giggles
Professor Principal
7.3.75  Trout Giggles  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.32    2 years ago

I find you offensive. My POV is that anyone who believes that Jesus died for their sins is a Christian. Now, they may not always act like one, but if they say that's what they believe, so be it.

I find you really offensive when you go bloviating on about any denomination that's not main stream protestant. That's simply your opinion but one I think you should keep to yourself.

And please. I'm done. Your long winded paragraphs are a bore and don't amount to anything more that you like typing words on a keyboard.

 
 
 
afrayedknot
Junior Quiet
7.3.76  afrayedknot  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.74    2 years ago

“That sounds like a group of people who are enjoying carrying out an execution.  If it actually happened that way, that is.” 

Burning ‘witches’ at the stake. Hangings in the public square. Lynchings. Our own short history is replete with the most ugly of examples of meting out ‘justice’ in the name of a god that is nebulous at best and at worst, exalted in so many…too many abhorrent acts. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.77  seeder  CB  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.74    2 years ago

The crucifixion of Jesus, as Jesus himself said was a fait accompli established in scripture and prophecy from Genesis throughout the books of the Bible.

There are numerous statements which with certainty surmise the 'gospels' view is The Jewish Leadership (Sanhedrin/ and crowd populace) set-up the Roman Leadership with a tumultuous undertaking in order to see that Jesus would receive state punishment; which Jewish leadership was not authorized to carry out. The words in 7.3.70 are explicit and plain.

That said, I have never blamed Jewish people then or now for the death of Jesus other than it is a fact in the biblical record of history. It is what happened. It is what it was. It was unfortunate. And no-one not involved in the 'event' as it played out is responsible or accountable for it.  :)

What has been done since to Jewish people over the crucifixion of Jesus is wrong, evil, and hateful.

I have never been told or preached to to hate Jewish people over Jesus' loss of life. No matter how many times I read the aforementioned scriptures on how Jesus came to this demise-the fault remains in the ancient past-no where else. Period.

One more thing: despite preaching on this subject matter in the black church-using our loud preaching style, no one, certainly not that I know of, comes away thinking Jews should be persecuted for activities prophesied in scriptural before the beginning of the world.

Finally, I hope I am clear as I can be on this point!

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.78  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.72    2 years ago
An all-powerful entity with perfect knowledge of past, present and future has, per the Bible, intentionally created creatures He knew would fail and knew He would punish (and then bring to the brink of extinction) only to have them reproduce like crazy and go right back to all sorts of sinful activities per their nature.

Well. It is a curious thing that is being asked (of me) here. Keep in mind, as human beings locked in present time and space alone, who have not seen all the periods and activities of humanity, who have not and can not sensate experiences from all of living humanity, who have no knowledge of what it means to live in the moment of being created (formed) and to cease to exist (decompose). . . .

Here is quite something we must understand and resolve to accept: I, we, will not be able to scale down the slope and into the depths and conscious state of a deity or 'deity' - where one does not believe in such entity/ies.

The Bible, for its part, attempts to use plain language,metaphors, and such other descriptors to make humanity aware of another realm of existence beyond our own. The books are not a perfect, all-encompassing set of narratives about the goings-on in the realm of Spirit-beings. That is, the books of the Bible only deliver as much information as is needful to make human understanding possible of what Spirit wants for humanity in its abode.

|

Man is created in the image of God, it is said. To be clear, the image of God is not causing us to be God, God "associated," or "little gods" or even anything beyond humanity's established and known limited behaviors, attitudes, and physicalities. So what is this image that we are?

Near as I can tell it is humanity's high intellect which is imaging God. High(er) intellect evolving upward.

|

As to the quote above, with what has come before above, let me take a stab at it:

God as overseer?

God, it appears to me, seems to have placed humanity in its own sphere of power, control, and influence, and so one can imagine if there are other lifeforms in this galaxy or galaxies, or universe and universes-those lifeforms possibly could be in their own sphere of power, control, and influence too.

God as Pruner?

It is possible (though hard to prove), God is a creative 'gardener' who planted creation here on Earth in the rich dirt of attitudinal and behavioral energies to see what humanity can accomplish with striving against one another. From time to time it becomes 'needful' for the gardener to 'weed' humanity, in order for it to have space requirements to reestablish itself in the good ground of the planet. Thus, reproductive energies are poured on the 'heads' of men, women, boys, and girls and bodies and minds become fertile in imaginations, dreams, inventions, and of course-offspring.

God as Farmer/Director?

It is possible God has supplied, equipped, and left 'standing' directives for creation to manage itself, surrounded by spectrums spanning out in all directions, coursing individual and collective course paths in order to learn what humanity can do with great power meted out to it across a single expanse of eons.

All spectulations of course, because what can a 'prisoner' of time and space really know about an entity of great power locked in and out of time and space by its very nature?

 
 
 
Jack_TX
Professor Quiet
7.3.79  Jack_TX  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.52    2 years ago
It's not about rejecting "the chosen Religion of Liberal politics",

Keep telling yourself that. 

it's about not being so damn judgmental of others and refraining from proclaiming themselves "victims"

The irony here is enough to throw the earth out of its orbit.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.80  seeder  CB  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.73    2 years ago

God is Spirit and we do not have an exacting standard and understanding for what spirit is. How are we to understand Spirit communicating with fleshly, limited, creatures? What would such communication look like? What would relative to the times communication with humanity in ancient times translate into? What would communications relative to the twenty-first century translate into?

There would be differing characteristics for sharing, for sure. After-all, we have sciences and physics now to list a few upscalings in human consciousness and ability to process information and data.

Thererfore, when a higher being chooses to address its 'subordinate' or lower creatures. . .an exchange/s can occur in one of two ways:

1.  The deity expands its creatures capacity to process information/data to 'fulfill' need to know;

2.  The deity uses corresponding language skills relative to the listener at its stage of development/evolution.

God need not regret anything or repent of anything God does with/for/to humanity-for if the concern is grave; simply 'unmake' humanity. That is, erase humanity's 'canvass' and start again. Or, group and discard the weak (energy) human offense. And start again.

Attributing human characteristics and conduct to God is simply a communication technique employed by writers to convey messages otherwise not translatable.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.81  Drakkonis  replied to  Dismayed Patriot @7.3.73    2 years ago
And don't forget to include this in the contradiction: " 5 Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great upon the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was altogether evil all the time. 6 And the LORD regretted that He had made man on the earth , and He was grieved in His heart." - Genesis 6:5-6

Oh, thanks! You saved me some trouble by choosing one of the more popular "contradictions". So, yeah, let's look at this one. Here is the full text describing this section that most, if not all, Bibles as describing how wicked the world had become.

1 When human beings began to increase in number on the earth and daughters were born to them, 2 the sons of God saw that the daughters of humans were beautiful, and they married any of them they chose. 3 Then the Lord said, “My Spirit will not contend with humans forever, for they are mortal ; their days will be a hundred and twenty years.”

4 The Nephilim were on the earth in those days—and also afterward—when the sons of God went to the daughters of humans and had children by them. They were the heroes of old, men of renown.

5 The Lord saw how great the wickedness of the human race had become on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of the human heart was only evil all the time. 6 The Lord regretted that he had made human beings on the earth, and his heart was deeply troubled. 7 So the Lord said, “I will wipe from the face of the earth the human race I have created—and with them the animals, the birds and the creatures that move along the ground—for I regret that I have made them.” 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord .

People like to reduce all of this down to one word. Regret, or sorry, or repent depending on the translation. How could God regret or be sorry for something, right? Wouldn't that mean He didn't see it coming or was surprised in some way? But this ignores the context which leads to the word. It also ignores how we ourselves often use the word the way God does here. Not to express surprise but, rather, disgust.

" I'm sorry I ever trusted you! ", doesn't necessarily mean the person was surprised by the betrayal. They may well have expected it but gave the person a chance anyway because they felt it was the right thing to do. But when they say " I'm sorry I ever trusted you ", they are expressing their disgust or disappointment in the other person, not actual surprise at the betrayal. 

Also, you'll notice Moses attributes some other human conditions to this all-powerful immortal entity, grief and a heart.

And? Is this a problem? 

 
 
 
afrayedknot
Junior Quiet
7.3.82  afrayedknot  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.81    2 years ago

“…Bibles…”

Never to disparage your faith, as that is the foundation of any belief, but know that whenever the bible is invoked as being fact, know you lose the argument in any attempt at persuasion. Peace. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.83  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.81    2 years ago
" I'm sorry I ever trusted you! ", doesn't necessarily mean the person was surprised by the betrayal. They may well have expected it but gave the person a chance anyway because they felt it was the right thing to do.

God would not, by His definition in the Bible, ' trust ' human beings to do anything.   God already knew what human beings would do.   There is nothing unknown to ' trust '.   And there is no way to give a person a ' chance ' since God already knows how the future turns out.     

I remain curious as to why you cannot see the fundamental contradiction:

An entity with perfect knowledge of the future would not ' trust ' because He knows the outcome.   He would not be disappointed, feel betrayed, etc. because He knew well before the event what was going to happen.   There is no ' let the human beings act to see what happens ' because He already knows what they will do.   


If I were to right now rewatch season 5 of '' I would not be surprised, etc. by anything the characters do.   Given I have the equivalent of 'perfect knowledge of the future' with respect to these characters (up to and including season 5), there is nothing to trust, nothing to be disappointed in, etc.   

God knew that human beings would fall short of his directives and that he would drive them (and all animals) to the brink of extinction.   He created human beings knowing all we would do, when we would do it, why we would do it, etc.   

God being surprised / disappointed / ... is like a writer being surprised / disappointed / ... by how she chose to conclude her story.   

The Christian God, as defined by the Bible, is a contradiction and cannot exist as defined.    A god might exist, but God is NOT the god as defined by the Bible.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.84  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.83    2 years ago
God would not, by His definition in the Bible, ' trust ' human beings to do anything.   God already knew what human beings would do.   There is nothing unknown to ' trust '.   And there is no way to give a person a ' chance ' since God already knows how the future turns out.     

I remain curious as to why you cannot see the fundamental contradiction:

An entity with perfect knowledge of the future would not ' trust ' because He knows the outcome.   He would not be disappointed, feel betrayed, etc. because He knew well before the event what was going to happen.   There is no ' let the human beings act to see what happens ' because He already knows what they will do.

As pointless as this will be, you once again do not understand the Bible. You're examining this from the perspective of what TiG thinks God would do according to TiG's ideas about God. It completely seems to escape you that an infinite God is communicating with an extremely finite creation of His called man who, due to the fall, is mostly clueless about what is good and moral or what is bad and evil. 

Geez! Just look at human parents. While they're not infinite in any sense, even they speak to their children in the same way. "Little Jonny! You said you wouldn't touch the vase! Now look at it! I regret trusting you to not touch it!"  Except what the parent says here isn't what the parent necessarily means. A parent knows they have to give children opportunities concerning trust. What the parent is actually trying to convey to the child is the sense of disappointment the child's failure in a trust issue generated. The parent wants the child to feel a sense of guilt and shame. Since the parent isn't God they couldn't "know" the child would fail but they wouldn't necessarily be surprised when the child fails because that is the nature of children. They have to be taught the importance of trust and accountability so the parent doesn't necessarily mean they regret giving the opportunity for trust, since opportunities are the only way to teach the child. It doesn't mean the parent made a mistake. It doesn't mean the parent didn't see it coming.  

In the verses we are currently talking about, we aren't discussing an event that came as a surprise to God. We are being told about God's reaction to what man had made of himself and why God decided to destroy them. He is teaching those who believe in him about trust and accountability. About the importance of proper behavior and the motivations for it. He was speaking to people from that point until now. Communicating to us.

A good portion of that message was that, left to ourselves, we would devolve so badly, morally, God would not tolerate us any further. And, by left to ourselves, if you care to look you will notice that God pretty much left us alone. There were no laws given. The one attempt God made was with Cain and Cain ignored him. The rest was us left to ourselves and the result was so bad God destroyed the world. God hit the reset button but this time, took a more visible role. 

Lastly, we were made in God's image but that doesn't give us the same attributes God has or in the same way or to the same degree. A picture of me is not me and can't do what I can do. Similarly, while we may be images, we are also finite. God is not. We may know what love is but we cannot know it, express it or experience it to the degree an infinite God can. Comparing a Raspberry Pi to the Fronteer Supercomputer doesn't even begin to illustrate the difference. So, when God speaks, it can be taken for granted that He is dumbing it down to something we have a chance of understanding. 

Everything I've said here is a rational explanation of the verse. Yet you are going to reject it because it doesn't fit with what you need the verse to say to support your preferred interpretation. Put another way, you aren't going 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.85  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.84    2 years ago
You're examining this from the perspective of what TiG thinks God would do

Take God out of the equation (as I did in several examples).

Surprise / disappointment / ... comes from learning something that you did not know.   An entity with perfect knowledge of the future cannot be surprised / disappointed / ...

This basic logic  has nothing to do with religion or a god.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.86  sandy-2021492  replied to  CB @7.3.77    2 years ago
There are numerous statements which with certainty surmise the 'gospels' view is The Jewish Leadership (Sanhedrin/ and crowd populace) set-up the Roman Leadership with a tumultuous undertaking in order to see that Jesus would receive state punishment; which Jewish leadership was not authorized to carry out. The words in 7.3.70 are explicit and plain.

And still may not be true.

What is quite ironic here is that, even if the Jews did kill Jesus, well, they were following their scriptural law, and somebody who supports scriptural law devised from the same scriptures used by their own religion really has no right to complain.  Those folks claim that those scriptures are the source of morality, and really shouldn't be arguing with the carrying out of that morality.  If Jesus was found guilty of heresy, by Mosaic Law, he should have been put to death.

Ah, but those folks want Biblical morality only when they agree with its interpretation and application.  When it's enacted on one of their own, they're not so fond of the concept.  Now we have new covenants, and salvation by faith, and all that shit.  They want to have their cake and eat it, too.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.87  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.85    2 years ago

Yep. Pointless. I must love futility. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.88  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.87    2 years ago

Snarky editorials are not a persuasive rebuttal.

Pretend you are the author of a fictional short story.

You plan out the personality and behavior of each character and weave them into a series of storylines which will, ultimately, entertain readers and satisfy them with a good ending.

You, the author, have perfect knowledge of the future of the characters and the story.

Explain to me how you, the author, can be surprised by anything that happens in your story.


Perfect knowledge of the future means there is nothing new for you to learn and thus it is impossible for you to be surprised.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.89  Drakkonis  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.86    2 years ago
What is quite ironic here is that, even if the Jews did kill Jesus, well, they were following their scriptural law, and somebody who supports scriptural law devised from the same scriptures used by their own religion really has no right to complain.  Those folks claim that those scriptures are the source of morality, and really shouldn't be arguing with the carrying out of that morality.  If Jesus was found guilty of heresy, by Mosaic Law, he should have been put to death.

Given what the NT says, there's no way to make sense of what you've said here. It bears no connection to the story's events, themes or purpose for being written. It addresses none of it. The real irony is that you do so but then chastise Christians for ''complaining" about what happened to Jesus. You literally pose the question "IF Jesus was found guilty of heresy, by mosaic law" but completely ignore everything the NT says in answer to the question, and then go on to say no one should have the right to complain. That, Sandy, is irony. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.90  seeder  CB  replied to  sandy-2021492 @7.3.86    2 years ago
If Jesus was found guilty of heresy, by Mosaic Law, he should have been put to death.

And so Jesus was put to death, through crucifixion, by Jewish leadership and under Roman authority. According to prophecy.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.91  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.88    2 years ago
Pretend you are the author of a fictional short story. You plan out the personality and behavior of each character and weave them into a series of storylines which will, ultimately, entertain readers and satisfy them with a good ending.

And that is exactly what you are doing and why this is futile. You already have your conclusion and your reasons for it any anything that falls outside of that isn't allowed to be considered. That was why you didn't address one single thing I posted in 7.3.84 , as if I had said nothing and you had only paused to take a breath to continue with what you were originally saying. 

And so, we're back to your argument, as if you are completely unaware of the possibility of any other. And pointing this out is simply " Snarky editorials are not a persuasive rebuttal ." Neither is pretending that the person you're speaking to hasn't made a rebuttal, TiG. Do you even realize we aren't even arguing about the same subject? I am explaining why God, who knows everything that will happen, would say what He does. You are arguing why you think the Bible is fiction. Do you not see you arguing one thing while I argue another as futile? 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.92  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.91    2 years ago

I intentionally simplified things and removed God and the Bible out of the discussion entirely.   I have intentionally focused on a question of logic.


Explain to me how perfect knowledge of the future leaves any possibility to learn something new.

(It does not; no learning is possible since all is already known.)

Explain to me how an entity with perfect knowledge of the future can be surprised.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.93  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.92    2 years ago
Explain to me how perfect knowledge of the future leaves any possibility to learn something new.

Explain to me where God learns something new. Show me where He was surprised. You know what? I'm not going to wait for your response. I'll provide an example for you. I'll put it in a different post. 

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
7.3.94  JBB  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.93    2 years ago

Are you kidding? Have you even read the Bible?

From Genesis to the New Testament the Bible is a story of God learning from and being changed by His relationship with His creation, mankind.

Adam and Eve were disobedient. Cain killed Able and hid it from God. God killed most of mankind in the flood then decided to never do that again. God sacrificed His Son to atone for what went wrong with God's creation of this world.

Mostly God learned by living and suffering though Christ. Why would God need a new covenant if He did not recognize a need for change? God is evolving, beginning to end.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
7.3.95  Texan1211  replied to  JBB @7.3.94    2 years ago
From Genesis to the New Testament the Bible is a story of God learning from and being changed by His relationship with His creation, mankind.

That may come as a shock to a particular poster here.

Supposedly, it isn't logically possible.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.96  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.92    2 years ago

Since you ignore what I said about Genesis 6, I'll present something else I think you would consider a good example for your argument. 

In Genesis 22, God commands Abraham to sacrifice his son to Him. Abraham obeys but before committing the sacrifice God stops him, saying...

“Do not lay a hand on the boy or do anything to him,” said the angel, “for now I know that you fear God, since you have not withheld your only son from me."

If someone picks up the Bible and reads this account and the words of this verse, knowing nothing else, one could reasonably conclude that, until this point, God did not know whether Abraham would obey Him or not. This is how you would take the meaning of this verse. You would take it in isolation and insist on a literal translation of just these words. "for now I know..." implies that he did not before, would be your argument. And, if we isolate it this way, you'd be right. However, doing so strips it of all context and context is as much a part of meaning as the words themselves. Something you insist we leave out. This leaves you with trying to make your point on technicalities rather than context and meaning.

So, what's really going on in this account? Well, to explain that is the trickiest part because it will mean asking something you may not be capable of doing. I doubt that you can because you've never been able to do it in all the time I've known you but, I have to ask anyway. You need to forget looking at this as something theoretical and, instead, just look at this with an eye for consistency according to the story. You should be able to do this, since I assume you can look at the works of Arthur C. Clark in that manner. You believe they are fiction but that is irrelevant to whether the story is plausible or not given the parameters set by the author. Unfortunately, you seem unable to do this with the Bible. But I'm going to try anyway. 

So, while there's a list of attributes associated with God, to understand what's going on with Abraham and sacrificing his son, the one's probably most relevant are that He knows the future and He knows what is in everyone's heart. The question then, if God knows these things, becomes why did God ask Abraham to sacrifice his son if he already knew that he would because He knows the future and knows Abraham's heart?  

The answer is, to show the rest of those who would seek Him what kind of faith He is looking for. God promised Abraham that Isaac would be the vessel through which God would keep His promise to Abraham about his descendants. Abraham's faith was that, although he didn't understand how God could keep this promise if Isaac was sacrificed, he believed God would still keep it regardless of his lack of understanding. This is the entire point of the episode in in its entirety. The reason God says, "for now I know" was to emphasize Abraham's faith. He could have said, "I knew you would obey me and offer up your son" but that obscures the point God wished to make, risking losing it in the shadow of His attribute. "for now I know" becomes a figure of speech in the manner of God speaking of his "strong right arm" or sheltering those who belong to Him under His "wing" or "preparing My arrows for war." God has no need of such things. They are simply figures of speech employed to convey ideas in a manner we can understand because of the way we think. 

But it doesn't end there. Not only was the episode intended to illustrate the kind of faith God looks for rather than highlighting His omnipotence, it illustrated what God would do in response to such faith. God stops Abraham and provides the sacrifice Himself, a foreshadowing of what Christ would do. God pays the price Himself, rather than us. 

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.97  Drakkonis  replied to  JBB @7.3.94    2 years ago
From Genesis to the New Testament the Bible is a story of God learning from and being changed by His relationship with His creation, mankind.

Um, yeah.... Let's look at what you provide as examples. 

Adam and Eve were disobedient.

True. How is this an example of God "learning" anything or being changed? Given the lack of explanation, I am left to assume you believe God did not expect this to happen. If so, why? 

Cain killed Able and hid it from God.

If Able's death was hidden from God, how did God know to confront Cain concerning it? 

God killed most of mankind in the flood then decided to never do that again.

You present this as if God regretted what He did in destroying the world with a flood rather than saying that this was a one time deal. If so, present your argument as to why this was an act of regret.

God sacrificed His Son to atone for what went wrong with God's creation of this world.

This is not an example of change on God's part. It is an example of blame shifting. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.98  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @7.3.95    2 years ago
That may come as a shock to a particular poster here.

Texan, I swear, you have yet again entirely missed my point.

JBB has observed that God learned per the Bible.   That is what I pointed out too (surprise, disappointment, etc.) are all a result of learning something new.

The contradiction is that God, per the Bible, has learned yet God, per the Bible, has perfect knowledge of the future.   

In general, any entity with perfect knowledge of the future already knows everything and thus there is nothing whatsoever left for it to learn.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.99  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.96    2 years ago
The reason God says, "for now I know" was to emphasize Abraham's faith.

You provide an example where God chose to not reveal what he already knew.    I suppose you wish, with this story, to imply that in every case where God expresses 'learning' or 'lack of knowledge' that this is always a pretense for our benefit.

Okay, let's go to the beginning with Adam and Eve.   If God knew that Adam and Eve were going to disobey Him, then why did he create them (and the environment) where this would happen?   God is in control of everything yet He right off the bat engineered a situation where He knew that He would punish Adam & Eve and all of humankind.   I suspect you will dismiss this as a parable.   If not, God simply set Adam and Eve up to fail.

Next, God knew that human kind would turn foul and that He would need to reboot.   He knew at the point of creation that He would need to flood the planet and kill off all life sparing but a few individuals.    He certainly is described by the Bible as learning something new and reacting to same but you will likely argue that He really did know he would need to reboot and that is just part of God's plan which is too complex for human beings to understand.   

And, in every other example one could offer, you will ultimately tell us that the apparent contradiction is always our lack of understanding and that God does indeed have perfect knowledge, does not learn, is not surprised (no matter how clearly the Bible describes the learning emotion) and any behavior that looks like God is reacting to something He has learned is simply an illusion based on our limited ability to comprehend the ways of God.

Not persuasive.   The Bible describes a god with perfect knowledge of the future who also learns.   Your answer (no doubt) is that all learning expressed in  biblical language is, essentially, a lie — it is not really learning ... God is just pretending to be surprised, disappointed, persuaded, etc.


An entity that has perfect knowledge of the future has nothing left to learn.   Learning is impossible.   Surprise, disappointment, etc. are impossible.

Do you agree or not?

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.100  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.97    2 years ago
You present this as if God regretted what He did in destroying the world with a flood rather than saying that this was a one time deal. If so, present your argument as to why this was an act of regret.

I am curious as to how you explain God knowingly creating the human race and this planet when he knew that He would essentially reboot.

Would you write a short story if you knew ahead of time that you would toss the only copy of it into the fireplace before anyone read it?

Ah, yes, we do not understand the mind of God.   To God this all makes good sense.    Not persuasive.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.101  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.98    2 years ago

Friend TiG, I think a point that is being overlooked here is how scripture uses the word: "Perfect."  For instance, a 'perfect' being should have need of nothing, whatsoever, as long as that perfection can be maintained and another word, 'pure.'  First consider this, God uses a curious turn of phrase in scripture to describe God:

Exodus 3:14 God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM. This is what you are to say to the Israelites: ‘I AM has sent me to you.’ ” 

I remember first reading that, thinking I was about to learn what to call God plain and simple. Instead, Moses is giving a definition of sort to go share with the tribe of Israelites.  For years I wondered its meaning. It is never really elucidated in scripture. God simply "AM" what we are explained about God.

Subsequently, for the believer, God is Spirit and what we know of Spirit. We look at God's perfection through that glass/prism. And we see many 'shades' of the Creator as 'delivered' in scripture.

Another frame of reference: God is "the House." In every endeavor supervised by governments, business, casinos even there is another turn of phrase:

"The House knows all."

Those who have authority over governments, businesses, and especially for this example: casinos knows when and where every feature or possibility for control of the 'levers' of its systems exist and operate.  "The house" is always in control in a casino. Game machines, randomly set, pay out according to design and 'house' purposes—no more and no less.

Therefore, while there are automation in place, and random acts, and even things crashing into one another autonomously, there is an 'overseer' who does not permit manners to go completely off the rails: Game Tilt.

God in this scenario is: "The House."

We are left to wonder how a perfect God could make imperfect creatures, until we realize (and accept) that scripturally humanity is not of the same essence as God. That is, we exist in limited, corruptible, changeable (dynamic) flesh and bone. Always issuing forth from other flesh and bone which is corruptible, limited, and changeable.

(Note: It is late, I am tired. Gonna end here in 'sleepy mode' so I am stopping this her—.)

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.102  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.93    2 years ago
Explain to me where God learns something new.

Did God always know that human beings were to grow so sinful that he would destroy them all?

Every biblical passage that describes an emotion such as surprise, anger, disappointment or shows God being persuaded to change His mind is an example of learning. 

And in every case I suppose you will claim that the words of the Bible are misleading and that an entirely different meaning must be drawn. 

At this point, I would suggest that the Bible itself needs to be scrapped and rewritten because it certainly is not a clear guide for anything, much less morality.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.103  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.101    2 years ago

Define 'perfect knowledge of past, present and future' for me.

 
 
 
sandy-2021492
Professor Expert
7.3.104  sandy-2021492  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.89    2 years ago
Given what the NT says, there's no way to make sense of what you've said here. It bears no connection to the story's events, themes or purpose for being written. It addresses none of it. The real irony is that you do so but then chastise Christians for ''complaining" about what happened to Jesus. You literally pose the question "IF Jesus was found guilty of heresy, by mosaic law" but completely ignore everything the NT says in answer to the question, and then go on to say no one should have the right to complain. That, Sandy, is irony. 

You want to apply your scripture to everyone else's morality.  The Jews at the time applied their scripture's morality.  You saying that the comparison makes no sense doesn't fly just because you said it, Drakk.  You want one sauce for the goose, and another sauce for the gander.

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.105  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.99    2 years ago
An entity that has perfect knowledge of the future has nothing left to learn.   Learning is impossible.   Surprise, disappointment, etc. are impossible. Do you agree or not?

Okay, since you aren't going to stop asking this pointless question let's get this over with. 

Yes, I agree that a being with perfect knowledge of the future has nothing left to learn, can't be surprised and the rest. 

Next?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
7.3.106  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.99    2 years ago

All human religions are cultural expressions. The "Adam and Eve" story is there, in different versions, across many if not all original groupings of human beings. It is known as the universal creation myth. 

Where I disagree with the atheists is when they say there is no value to religion and the "silliness" of these stories proves there is no God. I give God credit for more subtlety. If there is a God and he created the earth and its inhabitants, why are there so many differences among people? Not physical differences attributable to the evolutionary process, but differences in custom, belief, tradition, etc? 

The great philosopher of eastern thought Alan Watts ultimately considered himself an atheist, or more accurately an agnostic, but he did allow that a God may be playing or experimenting with the nature of his creations. Not only on earth, but throughout existence. God could clearly allow various groups of humans to experiment with their belief in "God" and create their own parameters for describing God's nature, power and majesty. Does the great variance of religious belief on earth bother or trouble God?  Why would it?  If the universe is timeless and endless what we see here could be just a tiny part of an infinite plan that we will never comprehend. 

Just follow the golden rule and marvel, that is all we can do. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.107  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.105    2 years ago
Okay, since you aren't going to stop asking this pointless question let's get this over with. 

The 'pointless' question was asked because it is foundational to my point and you refused to address it.

Yes, I agree that a being with perfect knowledge of the future has nothing left to learn, can't be surprised and the rest. 

Then you agree that it is not possible for God —as defined in the Bible— to have any reaction to a circumstance that connotes learning.   To wit, it is logically impossible for said God to be surprised, angered, disappointed, persuaded, pleased, etc.    


Now, addressing your post @7.3.84 (in spite of the snark):

It completely seems to escape you that an infinite God is communicating with an extremely finite creation of His called man who, due to the fall, is mostly clueless about what is good and moral or what is bad and evil. 

Why on Earth would you think that 'escapes me'?    I have asked you how God communicates objective morality to 'clueless' human beings given the Bible demonstrably fails to do so with any discernable consistency.

Geez! Just look at human parents.

Human parents do not have perfect knowledge of the future.   So your analogy is awkward at its onset.  

Except what the parent says here isn't what the parent necessarily means. A parent knows they have to give children opportunities concerning trust. What the parent is actually trying to convey to the child is the sense of disappointment the child's failure in a trust issue generated. The parent wants the child to feel a sense of guilt and shame.

Thus you argue that the Bible depicts a God saying that which He really does not mean.   In general, if that is how you want to roll, then any time there is a logical contradiction you can simply claim that the Bible does not actually mean what the words state.   A wonderful tool for confirmation bias, IMO.   Also, you are at odds with other Christians who hold that God does indeed have emotions (and thus necessarily learns).   Which interpretation is the 'true' interpretation?

In the verses we are currently talking about, we aren't discussing an event that came as a surprise to God. We are being told about God's reaction to what man had made of himself and why God decided to destroy them.

Stop right here.   When did God decide to destroy them?   Logically, God would have decided to destroy them before the creation event.   Since God does not learn (perfect knowledge, nothing to learn) there is no decision to be made based on the playing out of life.   Thus, logically, God created human beings and all of creation with flaws with the intent that He would then destroy it all later on after it has festered.   One of many indications that your chosen method of interpretation is irrational.

He is teaching those who believe in him about trust and accountability. About the importance of proper behavior and the motivations for it. He was speaking to people from that point until now. Communicating to us.

You are (still) dismissing the language used in the Bible.   What value is the Bible if it cannot be taken in plain English ... if one must ignore select, common words (or redefine them) in order to get the 'true' meaning?

A good portion of that message was that, left to ourselves, we would devolve so badly, morally, God would not tolerate us any further. And, by left to ourselves, if you care to look you will notice that God pretty much left us alone. There were no laws given. The one attempt God made was with Cain and Cain ignored him. The rest was us left to ourselves and the result was so bad God destroyed the world. God hit the reset button but this time, took a more visible role. 

Drakk, consider this carefully.    If God has perfect knowledge of the future that means reality is predetermined.   God is not leaving human beings alone, he has it all planned out and is letting the machine run the course that He knows it will run.   There is no way for free will to exist if the future is knowable and God, per the Bible, knows the future (perfectly!).

So, when God speaks, it can be taken for granted that He is dumbing it down to something we have a chance of understanding. 

And that is exactly what one would expect.    If God seeks to communicate with human beings He necessarily needs to express things in terms we would easily understand.   You argue against plain English.   You argue that the Bible does not mean what the plain English reading connotes.   Whenever there is a problem with the Bible you abstract and offer a meaning that resolves the problem by flat out ignoring the words used.    You have done that here by ignoring every word in the Bible that connotes learning:  surprise, anger, disappointment, persuasion, joy, sorrow, disgust, etc. with the claim that God is merely pretending to have these emotions so as to relate with mere human beings.    You employ the same technique when attempting to reconcile the fact that God never deems the owning of human beings as property to be immoral.

Ultimately, instead of acknowledging the contradictions in the Bible, you redefine the Bible to avoid the contradictions.    By executing this choice you have illustrated that the Bible cannot be taken as the word of God since you, and everyone else on the planet, can spin any meaning you wish, can ignore the actual words used in the text, and claim that your interpretation is the true interpretation and that all those contradictions are just illusions resulting from the disparity between the intellect of an infinite God and mere human beings.    

In short, any problem with the Bible will be addressed by you claiming that "one must interpret the Bible beyond the words used".


Your argument ultimately rewrites the Bible piece by piece.   Your version consists of a God with perfect knowledge of the future who creates a reality with human beings whose individual futures are all known (even before they exist) and God then intercedes (as a character in His story) to teach select human beings lessons.

As I noted, this is very much like writing a story.   God is the author.   God defines the characters, the plot, the storyline, the events and the conclusion.   God shapes the story so that the characters all behave as He wishes and through all of his actions ensures the desired end (God's plan).    

Thus human beings are automatons carrying out their lives according to a grand plan that has already determined their future and the future of all reality.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.108  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @7.3.106    2 years ago
It is known as the universal creation myth. 

And, as such, should not be taken as the divine word of a perfect God?

Where I disagree with the atheists is when they say there is no value to religion and the "silliness" of these stories proves there is no God. I give God credit for more subtlety. If there is a God and he created the earth and its inhabitants, why are there so many differences among people? Not physical differences attributable to the evolutionary process, but differences in custom, belief, tradition, etc? 

The typical agnostic atheist position is that the Bible should not be taken as the divine word of a perfect God because there is no evidence that supports this view and an abundance of evidence that illustrates the Bible is merely the work of ancient human beings (no divine guidance).

Who has argued that the 'silliness' of the stories proves there is no God?    I have argued that the contradiction in the Bible prove that the Christian God cannot possibly exist as described by the Bible.   The Bible defines a God with perfect knowledge of the future yet also speaks of God being angry, sad, pleased, disappointed, regretful, etc.   That is a contradiction:   an entity cannot have perfect knowledge of the future yet also 'learn' something new.   Without new information it is not possible to be angry, sad, etc.

[ Even Drakk in this thread acknowledges the contradiction and has argued that God really is never angry, sad, disappointed, etc. but rather is simply dumbing down divine intellect into emotions so that human beings can understand Him. ]

That does not mean there is no god (no sentient creator), it just means that one cannot take the Bible as the divine word of a perfect God because it has defined God as a contradiction.   Some argue that the divinity of the Bible is there but one must look beyond the language of the Bible to see it.   Obviously, not a persuasive argument.


Given the Bible is reinterpreted (and at times aggressively so) it has no single 'divine' interpretation.   Thus it should not be viewed as divine.

A more rational approach, IMO, is to not attempt to understand God through ancient books that clearly cannot be used to communicate the divine but rather to attempt to understand God by learning about that which He created.

To wit, there might indeed be a sentient creator.   If so, all we can do is attempt to understand same by analyzing that which it created ... our universe.   And, similarly, we have no possible way of knowing the creator's intent or plan.   There is no will for us to attempt to satisfy.   There are no rules other than those of reality (e.g. we all die).   There are no divine requirements to satisfy and rewards/punishments as consequences.  So nobody can speak for the creator and state "God hates fags", etc.    There are no religious authorities, no special rituals required to please the creator, etc.    We are all entities living in a reality full of marvels for us to explore.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.109  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.103    2 years ago
Define 'perfect knowledge of past, present and future' for me.

Perfect knowledge as stated would mean 'knowing all' -not able to be impressed upon by anything which occurs; choreographed.

However, we know instinctively that could not be how the Bible means the use of the phrase, because God created imperfect creatures and imperfect nature—both positionally: DYNAMIC. That is, nature and its 'subordinates' have been given power/energy to affect/alter their surroundings-near and far.

I get/see your point which you are after. However, it is not the 'sterile' treatment of the word that is important or practical.

The use of the word, perfect, is explained by its context across the many books of the Bible. You may have heard me (others) use the word, the books of the bible are"reconciled to each other."  That is, the books are 'made friendly' - harmonized, by what each shares brings-as each book reveals something new/other about how God interacts with humanity.

To go farther, for the believer, each book builds on its 'component' which came before (as least as lain out inside the book covers).

For instance, to say God is perfect past, present, and future would signify:

1. God can not make any decision which leads to error of any kind.

2. God can not create imperfect, dynamic, creatures. Therefore,

3. God can not create creatures of flesh and bone or natural things.

Where would humanity end up then? We would not exist. . Subsequently, "'perfect' past, present, and future" can not mean - without humanity and the natural order (where matter crashes into one thing or another repeatedly). 

It goes without saying. 

We reconcile the words of the Bible.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.110  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.109    2 years ago
However, we know instinctively that could not be how the Bible means the use of the phrase, because God created imperfect creatures and imperfect nature—both positionally: DYNAMIC. That is, nature and its 'subordinates' have been given power/energy to affect/alter their surroundings-near and far.

You and Drakk represent entirely different interpretations of the Bible in this regard.   And that is not surprising.   The interpretations of the Bible are many.  

The fact that there is no way to secure the definitive interpretation of the Bible is equivalent to the Bible being unable to serve as 'divine direction'.

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
7.3.111  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.108    2 years ago
To wit, there might indeed be a sentient creator.   If so, all we can do is attempt to understand same by analyzing that which it created ... our universe.   And, similarly, we have no possible way of knowing the creator's intent or plan.   There is no will for us to attempt to satisfy.   There are no rules other than those of reality (e.g. we all die).

Let's say you someday learn the ultimate physical reality of the universe, the scientific "explanation" for it all.  So what? It is ultimately meaningless. 

People like you act like science can explain everything. Even when it does it has no meaning. They are just processes. It's like saying paint drying has a meaning. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.112  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @7.3.111    2 years ago
Let's say you someday learn the ultimate physical reality of the universe, the scientific "explanation" for it all.  So what? It is ultimately meaningless. 

I do not sense that you appreciate the value of knowledge.

People like you act like science can explain everything.

Then you clearly do not understand what I am writing.   I have never stated nor implied that science can explain everything.   That is a ridiculous notion and is demonstrably not true.   Science, for example, cannot explain why we exist and likely never will be able to do so.   

In short, you have a very strange idea in your head and it is not based on what I have written.

Even when it does it has no meaning. They are just processes. It's like saying paint drying has a meaning. 

Science is more than a process.   Science is also the body of knowledge that has been accumulated using these methods.   It is amazing that you find no meaning in this.   Everything that we experience in modern society is a result of applied science.   It seems odd that I need even make such a comment.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.113  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.110    2 years ago
The fact that there is no way to secure the definitive interpretation of the Bible is equivalent to the Bible being unable to serve as 'divine direction'.

I don't see the relevance of what Drakk' (who does not consider me in any way of use to anything he writes, and won't even address me to attempt to 'reconcile' or harmonize) states has to do with what I shared with you. Ideally, Drakk' has shunned me. So, this is a distraction.

There is no definitive 'interpretation' for a set of ancient books "transiting" down the corridors of time and space with no obvious end in sight. The Bible is a book largely meant to affect the 'inner' beings of humanity in a variety of ways. People of faith use it in this manner. Albeit, traditionally, heterosexuals can get more agreement out of 'the book' based on its homogeneity with a patriarchal society structured toward family/kinship. Still, homosexuals 'long' for and are affected by a need and a drive towards formalized spirituality and seek to belong in a community of religious affiliation and association too.

As to what God is 'doing' about all of this. . . we, like, you wait patiently to see what its end will look and be like!

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.114  TᵢG  replied to  CB @7.3.113    2 years ago
I don't see the relevance of what Drakk' (who does not consider me in any way of use to anything he writes, and won't even address me to attempt to 'reconcile' or harmonize) states has to do with what I shared with you.

Two Christians with wildly different interpretations of the Bible.   You two are simply examples of what I have noted:   there is no definitive 'true' interpretation of the Bible.   All we have are claims of 'this is how you interpret the Bible'.   Mere claims, as I have expressed to Drakk, are not persuasive.

There is no definitive 'interpretation' for a set of ancient books "transiting" down the corridors of time and space with no obvious end in sight. 

Agreed.

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.115  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.114    2 years ago

Persuasion is not what I am after, friend TiG. I am simply offering discussion. God, gives the increase (persuasion), if any is to be gained.  Drakk' and I are not to be used as object lessons - anymore than the Pharisee class and Jesus. This, too, is a distraction from the points I share! As I can not defend or explain a fellow faith traveler who won't even address me.

    There is no definitive 'interpretation' for a set of ancient books "transiting" down the corridors of time and space with no obvious end in sight.  Agreed.

Of course not. The books are held to the highest standard meaning they will receive the 'highest' critical analyses and blanket criticism from individuals and groups who do not accept their spiritual 'outlook.' Plus, each translation of the books into natural languages, changes and shifts focus, in some cases and in various ways, for the culture being entered into. It is a natural phenomenon. Finally, the biblical writers, peasant folk and similarly positioned, did not pen words designed to withstand centuries of 'deconstruction' - it simply was not in the scope of what they thought or could think about presenting. Therefore, it behooves believers to 'inhabit' the meaning of their faith and position it to stay relevant to the times they live.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
7.3.116  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.98    2 years ago

I swear, can you get any more high and mighty?

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
7.3.117  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.112    2 years ago
Let's say you someday learn the ultimate physical reality of the universe, the scientific "explanation" for it all.  So what? It is ultimately meaningless. 
I do not sense that you appreciate the value of knowledge.

Knowledge without a context is meaningless. 

 
 
 
JohnRussell
Professor Principal
7.3.118  JohnRussell  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.112    2 years ago
Science is also the body of knowledge that has been accumulated using these methods.   It is amazing that you find no meaning in this. 

The search for the origins of the universe is not applied science. It is seeking ultimate knowledge because it is interesting. That is not meaning. 

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.119  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @7.3.116    2 years ago

Pay attention to what people are writing so that you have a clear understanding of the actual point before you opine.   You guessed ... and guessed wrong.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.120  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @7.3.117    2 years ago
Knowledge without a context is meaningless. 

Wouldn't the context of knowing the ultimate physical reality of the universe be "what is our origin?".   

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.121  TᵢG  replied to  JohnRussell @7.3.118    2 years ago
The search for the origins of the universe is not applied science. It is seeking ultimate knowledge because it is interesting. That is not meaning. 

Knowing the origin of the universe would expand our knowledge of physics.   Why would you presume that expanding our knowledge of physics would not lead to application of same?   Much of General Relativity was not applied until decades after Einstein's death.   Would you have dismissed Einstein's theoretical work as meaningless?

Very strange discussion.   Never had anything like this before.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
7.3.122  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.119    2 years ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.123  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.107    2 years ago
Then you agree that it is not possible for God —as defined in the Bible— to have any reaction to a circumstance that connotes learning.

Correct, with a caveat. When Jesus was here, living as a human being, he was living as a human being. He didn't know everything God knew because we don't know everything God knows. He was surprised on more than one occasion. It was a limit he accepted for the accomplishment of what he was here for. 

To wit, it is logically impossible for said God to be surprised, angered, disappointed, persuaded, pleased, etc.    

God can't be surprised or disappointed. God can be angered or pleased and I don't see why you would include these emotions as they have no connection to a perfect knowing of the future. Persuaded depends on point of view.   

Why on Earth would you think that 'escapes me'?

Because you keep taking context out of the argument and reduce it to what you think is the simplest terms. That is, you look at a concept that you think applies and consider nothing else. This is your own words, TiG.

I intentionally simplified things and removed God and the Bible out of the discussion entirely.   I have intentionally focused on a question of logic.

This would be relevant if what was under discussion was simply, "Can an entity with perfect knowledge of the future be surprised," but that isn't what the argument is about because the answer to that is self evident. The argument is, was there an event where God was surprised in the Bible or behaved as if He did not know something before it happened or some similar thing. 

Your argument is that God can't be as described in the Bible because you think there are occasions where He is surprised, which I reject, except for the already explained circumstance.

I have asked you how God communicates objective morality to 'clueless' human beings given the Bible demonstrably fails to do so with any discernable consistency.

This is begging the question, TiG, and you do it all the time. You ask a question that already assumes the conclusion, which you put in terms of being a given when it certainly is not. And your argument just keeps on standing on that fallacy. 

Human parents do not have perfect knowledge of the future.   So your analogy is awkward at its offset.

Which would be a relevant point if the purpose of the analogy had something to do with whether or not human parents had perfect knowledge of the future. 

Thus you argue that the Bible depicts a God saying that which He really does not mean.

Thus I argue that God knows His audience and speaks to them accordingly. 

In general, if that is how you want to roll, then any time there is a logical contradiction you can simply claim that the Bible does not actually mean what the words state.   A wonderful tool for confirmation bias, IMO.

On the other hand, you can do what you do right here. Say that there is a logical contradiction as if the contradiction is proven beyond contestation and, as a bonus, the only meaning the words in the Bible can mean is the meaning you assign them. Then argue as if the other guy agrees with what you've established no matter how much he states otherwise.  

Also, you are at odds with other Christians who hold that God does indeed have emotions (and thus necessarily learns).

Where have I said, or given the impression that God doesn't have emotions. And, why would having emotions such as being pleased, happy or angry have to do with learning? 

Stop right here.   When did God decide to destroy them?

From His perspective, before anything was even created. From ours, when He made the pronouncement. 

Logically, God would have decided to destroy them before the creation event.

Correct.

Since God does not learn (perfect knowledge, nothing to learn) there is no decision to be made based on the playing out of life.

This is in error. There is no logical basis for this being true and learning wouldn't be a relevant factor. It suggests, in error, that God is subject to the future rather than its creator. Past, present and future are the result of decisions He made before time began. 

Thus, logically, God created human beings and all of creation in a manner that would lead Him to then destroy it later on.   

Although the statement immediately doesn't logically lead to this one, you are correct.

One of many indications that your chosen method of interpretation is irrational.

An empty statement, since there is no explanation as to what is irrational about it. 

You are (still) dismissing the language used in the Bible.   What value is the Bible if it cannot be taken in plain English ... if one must ignore word (or redefine them) in order to get the 'true' meaning?

Several reasons. First, no one of any language simply reads words and then assume the words, by themselves, have conveyed the intended meaning. There is a saying. Context is king. All of us have experienced someone reading something they completely got wrong until someone explained the context. It's as common as grass.

Second, when we read the Bible we are reading English but the Bible wasn't written in English. Making it harder, it was written to a different culture and a different time. So, for a moment, let's just stick with today.

A story is written down by an Eskimo about a brave hunter who saves his tribe in a cruel winter. The story is written so that future generations of Eskimos can be enriched by it. A non-Eskimo is entranced with the story and writes it down in English. Problem is, snow features a lot in the story and Eskimos have something like 50 words for snow. To the Eskimo reader, the context of the story depends on which word for snow is used but the problem for the translator is that English has few distinctions for snow. So, what the English reader hears will be different from what the Eskimo reader hears. Now, magnify that by time and you might understand the answer to your question. In order to understand what's actually being said, you have to dig. You have to understand what is written as they would have heard it.

This is why I say you don't understand the Bible. You read it with your scientific, modern Western mind and think you get the meaning but you don't because you don't have the context. Perhaps one might say why doesn't God just magically make the translation work so we get the same context as they got. The Bible doesn't directly say, however, it gives clues, in my opinion. It says to seek God and search out His word as if we were seeking riches. That is, put the same sort of effort as you would for what you value most. What this does is make us think. And think critically, whether you believe that or not. 

TBC

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.124  TᵢG  replied to  Texan1211 @7.3.122    2 years ago
Please stop acting as if your writing is so mystical and deep that no one understands it.

Again you fail to understand.   My point was that my writing was quite clear and that you failed to even read carefully enough to see the point.

You did not know what you were talking about.   All you have done in this tread is troll and disrupt adult, thoughtful discussion.

 
 
 
Texan1211
Professor Principal
7.3.125  Texan1211  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.124    2 years ago

[deleted]

 
 
 
Drakkonis
Professor Guide
7.3.126  Drakkonis  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.107    2 years ago
Drakk, consider this carefully.    If God has perfect knowledge of the future that means reality is predetermined.   God is not leaving human beings alone, he has it all planned out and is letting the machine run the course that He knows it will run.   There is no way for free will to exist if the future is knowable and God, per the Bible, knows the future (perfectly!).

You sound like a Calvinist. What you're saying here is pretty much what they believe. You and I aren't having this discussion because we choose to, but because it's part of the program God has running. They believe this because they believe for God to be truly Sovereign, free will cannot exist in any meaningful way. 

The logical problem I see with such a view of a God who is not supposed to be subject to anything other than His nature is that it puts an unnecessary or unprovable restriction on God, limiting His power. It is saying that God cannot accomplish His purpose if man has some measure of free will. That is, if someone can defy God's desire for that person's life then God cannot be Sovereign. Man has the power to thwart His will. Makes sense, right? Unless...

Unless God, in His sovereignty, grants that power to man. If He has granted that power does that mean God can't know the future or work toward His stated ends? To categorically state that He could not would necessarily mean that one would not only have to understand time in its entirety, something that still escapes us, but also a complete understanding of God in every detail and time's effect on Him, if any, along with an explanation of why some version of free will would prevent God from knowing the future. 

And that is exactly what one would expect.    If God seeks to communicate with human beings He necessarily needs to express things in terms we would easily understand.   You argue against plain English.

Um, you might expect that but that doesn't make it so. Also, what makes you think they aren't easy to understand? Perhaps the actual problem are your assumptions and preconceptions, pride and the rest that is the actual problem? As for arguing against plain English, covered in the previous post. There isn't really any plain English in this case. 

You argue that the Bible does not mean what the plain English reading connotes.

I argue that the Bible doesn't mean what your modern Western mind leads you to believe what you think it says. 

Whenever there is a problem with the Bible you abstract and offer a meaning that resolves the problem by flat outignoring the words used.

Because you want me to take them without context. Get used to it. 

You have done that here by ignoring every word in the Bible that connotes learning:  surprise, anger, disappointment, persuasion, joy, sorrow, disgust, etc. with the claim that God is merely pretending to have these emotions so as to relate with mere human beings.

Nope. I'm disagreeing with your interpretation. There's a difference. Also, again, what's the deal with emotions? 

You employ the same technique when attempting to reconcile the fact that God never deems the owning of human beings as property to be immoral.

I don't attempt to reconcile anything. I don't know why God allowed it, even though I know He doesn't like it. I have my opinions as to why He does but that's all they are. I believe that, had He done what you demand, there would have been a lot more suffering than there was. 

Ultimately, instead of acknowledging the contradictions in the Bible, you redefine the Bible to avoid the contradictions.

That's an interesting point of view, TiG. What am I actually redefining? The Bible or what you declare it says? For thousands of years people have read it the way I have, but you come along, declare it is thus, and anyone who disagrees is redefining it? What size is your hat? 

By executing this choice you have illustrated that the Bible cannot be taken as the word of God since you, and everyone else on the planet, can spin any meaning you wish, can ignore the actual words used in the text, and claim that your interpretation is the true interpretation and that all those contradictions are just illusions resulting from the disparity between the intellect of an infinite God and mere human beings.

Do you think my "interpretation" is something odd? A one off? Unusual? Billions of people over thousands of years have the same interpretation. How many still believe in Zeus? Why don't they? But your whole rant is rather meaningless as it can be applied to anything, not just the Bible. Take socialism, for instance. How about what the definition of what a woman is? 

Anyway, this is all the time I have to waste. Usually, when I engage with you this way, I wonder if I'm actually talking to you or, really, talking to anyone else who might read what I say with an open mind. I never really know the answer. 

 
 
 
CB
Professor Principal
7.3.127  seeder  CB  replied to  TᵢG @7.3.107    2 years ago
If God has perfect knowledge of the future that means reality is predetermined.  

Ahem TiG, your statement ignores the fact that the word "perfect" needs to be qualified in biblical usage . Scripture defines its usage through expression . For instance, "perfection" does not mean God can do something "impossible":

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible . Matthew 19:26

When reading this verse from the Bible, excitement can rise up in a reader to shout and cheer: God can do anything !

Only to be faced with a possibility (at least linguistically) that God doing anything would mean God can make a rock God can't lift: impossibility .

So we have to stay within parameters of language and context when we 'formulate' these theories and representations of God.

The word, "perfect" in the Bible is qualified by the writers context and usage.

 
 
 
TᵢG
Professor Principal
7.3.128  TᵢG  replied to  Drakkonis @7.3.123    2 years ago
When Jesus was here, ...

I was referring to the Father, aka Jehovah aka Yahweh.   It is typically Yahweh who is attributed with omniscience.   I would not make an argument that the Bible defines Jesus as omniscient so we are in agreement here.

God can't be surprised or disappointed. God can be angered or pleased and I don't see why you would include these emotions as they have no connection to a perfect knowing of the future. Persuaded depends on point of view.  

Again, if you write a story and have full control over the setting, situations, characters, events, etc. you have perfect knowledge of your story across time.   If you make a character that would cause anger, how could you the author be angered?   You knew the character would engage in this act, you are in total control of everything.    Same logic goes with being pleased.   If you already know what is going to happen in the story you control, how could you be pleased?   Both anger and pleasure are a reaction to new information.   If you already have all the information there is nothing to trigger anger or pleasure.

If you put your dog in a closet with food and water for 24 hours, will you be angry when you find 'accidents'?   We are not omniscient, but that certainly simulates certainty in human terms.

This would be relevant if what was under discussion was simply, "Can an entity with perfect knowledge of the future be surprised," but that isn't what the argument is about because the answer to that is self evident. The argument is, was there an event where God was surprised in the Bible or behaved as if He did not know something before it happened or some similar thing. 

No, my point is that the Bible defines God as a contradiction.   It states that God has perfect knowledge and then states that God was surprised, angered, etc.   And it most definitely does do this.   Your response is that we must not take words like 'surprise' or 'anger' literally and that these are simply a divine pretense to relate to our relatively primitive minds.   That I find to be an feeble and unpersuasive argument.  I do not buy the 'sure, that is what it says but that is not what it means' argument especially since your particular interpretation is but one of many.   I see no reason to hold that have nailed truth.

Your response also misses the point I made.   The Bible does indeed define God as a contradiction;  you simply claim that the Bible cannot be taken literally.

This then leads to my overall point that the Bible cannot be taken as divine guidance.    If one cannot simply read the Bible and understand divine direction then the Bible is an entirely ineffective means of communicating same.   If readers cannot even hold that the Bible declaring God angry actually does not mean in any way that God is displeased then the Bible is largely worthless for divine communication.

Your argument is that God can't be as described in the Bible because you think there are occasions where He is surprised, which I reject, except for the already explained circumstance

I do not just think this, it is in the Bible.   You are free to offer grand interpretations but you cannot change the words used.   You cannot change what the Bible actually states.   And that is my point.   The Bible is an unreliable source because even the God it defines is a contradiction.

Consider this:

Genesis 6:5-7
And God saw that the wickedne