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Christianity Admin on 19 Nov 2006 12:55 pm

Religion and muscular dystrophy

The article:

Student finds empowerment in religion to continue life-long battle

The article offers a succinct explanation of what has gone wrong with the student’s body:

Stober, a 23-year-old MU student from Sedalia, has Duchenne muscular dystrophy, a degenerative disorder affecting one in every 35,000 males who inherit from their mothers a recessive X-chromosome with a mutated dystrophin gene. Dystrophin produces muscle proteins that enable the muscle to stay strong and develop. The absence of dystrophin weakens muscle cells, eventually causing them to die.

One day, there will be a cure for this disease. Science is the force that will create the cure. God is nowhere to be seen. God has not cured this particular patient, nor any other muscular dystrophy patient. If God were to exist, and if God were to answer prayers as the Bible promises, then this disease would not exist.

And yet…

“I couldn’t imagine responding as well as I have to my disability without the strength I got from my faith,” Stober said.

And…

“He (God) gives me a hope for the future, a purpose and assurance that he’s going to work things out for my benefit,” he said.

And…

“And this is the dream,” he said. “When I graduate, I want to go to seminary to become more knowledgeable about the Christian faith. I’m called to write, to teach, to speak, to defend the Christian faith. I think I have a story to tell.”

Unfortunately for Stober and everyone else who suffers from this disease:

Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy eventually affects all voluntary muscles, as well as the heart and breathing muscles. Survival is rare beyond the early 30s. Death typically occurs from respiratory failure or heart disorders.

Why isn’t the story obvious? Why isn’t it obvious that God is imaginary based on the evidence inside his own body? If God were to answer prayers as the Bible promises, this student, and millions of people like him, would simply pray for a cure. Instead, every cure comes from science, or the body heals itself. It has been proven without question that every answered prayer is nothing but a coincidence.

Therefore, the question shifts. What is this student, and billions of others like him, gaining from their belief in an imaginary friend? And why would a newspaper write an article about someone who professes such belief?

What is the rational replacement for an imaginary friend?

27 Responses to “Religion and muscular dystrophy”

  1. on 20 Nov 2006 at 9:51 am 1.Jimson said …

    People believe in God because God gives them hope.

  2. on 20 Nov 2006 at 4:41 pm 2.Dave said …

    Because of the intense fear of death and the unknown (since no one has returned from death to report what happens afterwards) weak-minded people still need this crutch of silly superstition to lean on. The only solution is education. Teach the children about logic, reason, common sense and how to tell the difference between reality and superstition. We should also teach people that death is a part of the life-cycle and not to be feared.

  3. on 22 Nov 2006 at 8:11 am 3.Brayton said …

    Although i believe education is one of the key elements in our struggle to help people recognize their delusion, its gonna take alot more, its got to be at a cultural and social level, their have been too many educated suicide bombers to put too much hope in education alone. I cant profess to know the exact plan of action, but, as we have seen far too often, reason and logic alone are often blunted by the blind faith of religions followers.

  4. on 22 Nov 2006 at 7:45 pm 4.Justin said …

    The only crutch I’ve read in this entire article is the delusion that God does not exist. First off, this entire article is built off straw-men.

    I have repeatedly seen this kind of argument: “If God were to exist, and if God were to answer prayers as the Bible promises, then this disease would not exist.”

    But the Bible says, 1 John 5:14-15, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything ACCORDING TO *HIS* WILL, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us–whatever we ask–we know that we have what we asked of Him.”

    If any of you want to attack the teachings of Jesus, learn what He says. He made it explicitly clear when teaching all of His disciples that we are to pray that GOD’S will be done.

    Jimson, you wrote that people believe in God because He gives us hope. Yes, and no. He does give us hope, but that isn’t why we believe in Him. Maybe, as hard as it might just be for you to accept, we find that there is more logic in God, Jesus, and the Bible, than science.

    Dave, you wrote: “Because of the intense fear of death and the unknown (since no one has returned from death to report what happens afterwards) weak-minded people still need this crutch of silly superstition to lean on.”

    1. Jesus returned from death, and Lazarus returned from death. So to say that no one has returned from death would be a lie.
    2. If you were to actually engage the material, you would find more logic in Christianity.

    Brayton, you don’t even have an argument.

    E. Y. Mullins writes:
    A redeemed drunkard, with vivid memory of past hopeless struggles and new sense of power through Christ, was replying to the charge that “his religion was a delusion.” He said: “Thank God for the delusion; it has put clothes on my children and shoes on their feet and bread in their mouths. It has made a man of me and it has put joy and peace in my home, which had been a hell. If this is a delusion, may God send it to the slaves of drink everywhere, for their slavery is an awful reality.”

    If anything, all of you need to seriously read Josh McDowell’s “A Ready Defense” and if you don’t come to the rational conclusion that he, I, and every other professing Christian has, then you are your very own definition of “delusional”.

  5. on 24 Nov 2006 at 3:51 pm 5.Brian said …

    Wow – Justin says it’s delusional to not believe in God, which is by default an unprovable position. That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard. Is it delusional to not believe in Vishnu? Oh, of course not, that’s not the ‘God’ you’re referring to.

    Then you pull one Jesus quote from the Bible and suddenly you know what he has to say on faith and prayer? I could pull 5 more quotes where Jesus makes no mention of ‘God’s will’ but rather talks about the power of faith. I think you need to read how ridiculous the concept of God’s will is right here.

    And finally, you provide 1 example of someone helped from ‘religion’, and suddenly all religion is good? How about Scientology? That’s helped lots of people. You think Scientology is good?

    The delusion you suffer from is your single-minded viewpoint that ‘my religion is the right one and better than yours’.

  6. on 24 Nov 2006 at 10:17 pm 6.Daniel, 18 said …

    First, I’d like to say that the Bible makes no reference to God causing any evil. This is because evil is not a substance and cannot be caused.

    While we’re here, let’s talk about the Bible. Let’s imagine for a moment that you believe what Scripture says…
    -and if you’re going to quote any of it, please know the context in which it was written and WHY before you do-
    From cover to cover it tells a story. The beginning is not a way of life, but a history. Then from Jesus on, it turns the past way of “religion” upside down – doing away with traditions and routine sacrifices entirely, and proposing that faith is where the Truth is. (All this made possible by the story you’ve heard a million times: Jesus was you’re voluntary sacrifice, taking the punishment for you’re sins.)

    That’s hard to swallow, I know.
    Question: “The whole first part is just a history? That means that all the history was a waste of time to read about, doesn’t it?”
    Answer: No. If we didn’t know where we came from, how would we know where to go? Right?
    Maybe that’s too vague.
    Better answer: If we didn’t know how things happened in the past and the mistakes that were made, what’s to stop us from doing it again?
    I’ll be a little offensive: We have the Biblical history of religion and it’s effects, and yet there are still churches doing the same “religious” junk. (ex. “sacraments,” let’s get real. If those routines forgive sins, I should be able to click my heels and do it.)

    Think of it like this: The Old Testiment shows us how faith began, the New Testiment tells us how to perfect it. And from a Biblical standpoint, one that is taken in TRUE context, THATS why you’re diseases still exist. Not because God want’s them here; the Bible does not say that God has a hand in any suffering. But because of the lack of faith, disease stays. I’ll go a little deeper into that in a minute…

    I’m sure you’re still wondering why I began by saying that, “evil is not a substance.” You were probably thinkin, “but Daniel, there’s so much evil in the world! You’re in denial!”
    Not at all. Evil is not the abundance of “bad,” it is the total absense of Good.
    (Even though some people read segments of Scripture and think it means that God causes bad things to happen, it says nothing of the sort. Two things it does say though is that, 1) “God works all things together for good of those who love Him, who are called according to His purpose.” And, 2) Everything that God created is good.)
    So it’s only a little rediculous to base you’re assumptions of God’s vengeance in Old Testiment writings, when, in reality, such things can be explained with the New Testiment to say that you’re afflictions are no longer bound to you by science, but lack of faith and will. So God is not the author of such things, but rather such things spawn from the absense of God – and God’s absense is a choice that we make. And I can prove or disprove this by either saying that my own experience in having perfect health – with absolutely no sickness – for 3 years is either due to my last 3 years of devotion to faith in God… or maybe I am just the new stage of human evolution. What do you think?)

    By now you either think I’m crazy, or you’re realizing that intelligence is not unknown to faith.

    And if you like, I can explain to you God’s Will at a general level, but not a personal level.

  7. on 24 Nov 2006 at 11:48 pm 7.Brian said …

    I’ll take the former – that you’re crazy. If you attribute 3 years of ‘perfect health’ to your faith in God, then you definitely are crazy, and obviously haven’t read a single word at the website.

    How would you explain an Atheist who had the same run of luck of health? He’s just lucky, whereas you’re blessed? That’s typical Christian egotism. And how about the boy in this article? He’s not as ‘blessed’ as you? If this boy dies tomorrow, was his faith not strong enough? You’re the perfect epitome of everything that is wrong with the Christian mentality.

    You need to read this website to come to the understanding that nobody is blessed, and nobody is damned. God answers no prayers – not a one.

  8. on 26 Nov 2006 at 12:17 am 8.Daniel, 18 said …

    I’m sorry for you’re sake if my belief bothers you, it bothers me too. But the difference between us is this: I’m convinced that what bothers me is True, and you’re convinced that what bothers you is flase.

    Maybe my ability to be set free from addictions (substance and immorality), along with my contentment in all circumstances can both be explained by my own determination to change my own life. That would only be logical right? I have often thought of that myself and tried to convince myself of that as well. But the evidence that defies logic convinces me otherwise. You probably thinkin, “what evidence? I see no reason to believe what you think is ‘Truth.’” My answer is this: you haven’t seen what I’ve seen.
    I will gladly tell you what I’ve seen, but you’re response has been predicted by a similar case (Read John 9 after all this, and you may be able see what I meant in that last sentence). After all, you didn’t see it, so why should you believe?

    …I’ve seen a man respond to God’s direction and breathe life back into a baby after it had died and been dead for several minutes shortly after birth.
    …I’ve seen evidence of the power of prayer when a woman’s husband died; then after the African method of embalming, three days of prayer and a faith encouraged by God’s fulfilling of past promises (Hebrews 11:35, in particular), she saw him raised from the dead beneath a church during a meeting where a man named Reinhard Bonnke was speaking.
    …I’ve seen divine protection in the power of prayer before; my two brothers walked away unharmed after totaling 3 cars and 2 motorcycles over a 2-3 year timespan (not to mention the accidents that didn’t total the cars).
    From examining a crash site from each brother, I saw a few remarkable things:
    -The first one was a Toyota Corolla that went off the road going about 90+ mph (he always drove too fast back then). He over-corrected, went back across and off on the other side where his car did three and a half cartwheels, turning it into a crushed corolla tin can. A few scratches, no real damage was done to him.
    -One of the other brother’s cars left the road just before a bridge (maintenance records suggest that the CV-joint on the front-left wheel seized up, causing a violent pull to the left). His car missed the first concrete pillar of the bridge by about 3 inches, it “flew” beyond the laws of trajectory, bounced on the riverbank and then resumed flight until it had cleared the river.
    *I’ve said before: God doesn’t cause problems, but He can do a lot of impressive things in the midst of them.* All this, I believe, because of my mothers relentless faith and her continual prayers that God protect us.

    These are just a few things that I’ve seen.

    Being an American, this is the opinion that I’m entitled to. I won’t project my opinions on others, but I will tell my story.
    You’re entitled to your opinion, and I won’t deny you that. But that doesn’t mean I won’t argue my case. I love critical thinking. :-)

    I’m sorry if all this does is step on your toes. Maybe you could offer a better explaination for these events by luck or coincidence without even pulling an “imaginery friend” into the mix. But science is usually what people swear by if they don’t believe God exists, and since science sure couldn’t do it this time – I’ll stick with faith.

    Have a great day! I do enjoy writing you.

  9. on 26 Nov 2006 at 5:43 pm 9.Kellan said …

    Daniel, read these verses:

    Lam 3:38, Jer 18:11, Is 45:7, Amos 3:6, Ezek 20:25

    Some are direct and some are ambiguous (aren’t all bible verses somewhat ambiguous?), but it’s rather clear God creates evil.

    Then again, there are some verses (Cor 14:33, Deut 32:4, James 1:13) that say he does not create evil. How someone can base their life off of such an evil and contradictory book baffles me.

  10. on 29 Nov 2006 at 2:31 am 10.Daniel, 18 said …

    -I read those verses-
    It would seem rather clear God creates evil, if you take one sentence (or in one of these cases – half of an idea) from the chapter of one book of the Bible and base you assumptions of the entire collection’s content on it.

    I do like your arguments, but they’re surface level (and by that I mean one verse deep). Let me explain it the way I interpret it.
    What I’m about to say makes perfect sense when you keep it in context, whether you agree with me or not.
    But I did agree with you on the “aren’t all bible verses somewhat ambiguous?” comment though, but only to a degree. But that degree ended after my heart grasped 1 Corinthians 2:14. That one is far from ambiguous. Anyway, back to the point. Does God create evil?

    In the Old Testament, evil could be described as something happening that the people didn’t expect and didn’t like – something that caused grief or trouble. This made a lot of sense to them back then when they studied the Torah, but what about now? –If you read the text, every “evil” thing associated with God was, in all reality, only justice.
    In the New Testament, evil has a whole new face. It goes from being people-focused to God-focused. Evil is no longer what goes against the people, but what goes against God.
    That is how I see it. If I’m wrong, show me, and I’ll go back to the drawing board.
    But let’s probe some verses anyway. That’s what we’re here for.
    Lamentations 3:38
    Lamentations is the sequel to the book of Jeremiah, written in a poetic format. Jeremiah wrote these poems (chapters 1-4) to tell the story of Jerusalem’s fall. Your scripture of choice is where Jeremiah is recollecting Jerusalem’s refusal to heed God’s warning. Thus, the evil from God’s mouth, the warning, their punishment spoken of, was brought upon them because of their own unrighteousness. However, chapter five does not stick to the same poetic patterns as the other four do. This is because it was Jeremiah’s prayer for God’s mercy – not planned to tell a story like the others, but just to pray. I think this was Jeremiah’s way of expressing his feelings after all his warnings were rejected and Jerusalem was lost. –This is another beautiful thing about God; He’ll give us plenty of warning, but will never force Himself on us. However, should we choose our own path, our destruction is our own.
    Jeremiah 18:11
    If you continue to read the rest of that chapter, you see that the prophet states the rest of God’s warning. This is why evil/disaster was coming – in a nut shell – they betrayed God and worshipped idols. Not only does this remove the divine protection they would have had, but it throws the door wide open for evil’s repercussions. This, of course, ends up happening and that’s why Lamentations exists – because Jeremiah was lamenting over Jerusalem’s decisions.

    For the Record: I’d like it to be known that because Isaiah 53:10-12 became reality; vengeance and destruction are no longer God’s intension (2 Peter 3:9). But like I said, we’re given a choice. In this case, Jerusalem chose poorly. And this is a repeating pattern in the next three prophets that you mentioned as well (Isaiah 45:7, Amos 3:6, and Ezekiel 20:25); you just have to read the whole chapter to get what their saying. But all the vengeance ended when Jesus took our place. So now it’s up to us whether we accept His sacrifice and walk in God’s Truth or not. But that’s a different sermon…

    Now, let’s be realistic… If you propose that any book’s content be evaluated by “one liners,” then ALL literature would be meaningless. Every good novel, story, essay, poem, etc. – all contain an Introduction, a Body and a Conclusion (I’m sure you know this, but I’m just about to make a point); if you draw single lines from any story, essay (whatever), some lines will make sense, some will not. That’s why I keep mentioning context; you must know the why’s, how’s and where’s of the story to understand that it’s deeper than just a few words.

    I get the feeling you’re trying to discredit the Bible just because “one liners” don’t make sense to you. I’ve been in the same boat. When I was a secular zealot, I tried to discredit the Bible, partly because it didn’t make sense to me. But when I read a little deeper than just one verse, it started making more sense; in part, I think this was because I gave it a chance. That’s when the Gospel became a reality to me.

  11. on 30 Nov 2006 at 2:51 pm 11.Joshu said …

    Okay, on the evil vs not evil topic, lets look at this from a logical/philosophical point of view, and not use the bible at all. Why? Because anybody worth their salt in religious studies can make the bible say whatever they want (as with so many other compilation books, having so many different authors in the whole thing, sometimes multiple with a single book, many of them will have far from the same moral viewpoint, and interpret things they record with different nuances and moral interpretations in mind. In other words, anyone can make the bible say anything given enough searching and interpretation. Anyway…)

    1. God is supposed to be the creator of all things. An omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient force who can accurately know (and control) the future as well as nature. For argument’s sake, we’ll say he purposely gave humankind free will. (Because if he didn’t, then god very obviously created evil, no matter how you look at it.)

    2. By above, God created man.

    3. Evil is given several defintions, I’ll address each:
    a. Evil is the absence of Good
    b. Evil is the absence of God
    c. Evil is when things don’t go to God’s plan
    d. Evil is that which actively strives against God
    e. Evil is that which goes against God’s rules.

    4. Now, given each, I will address, but first I must point out. Some people claim the absence of something does not exist. (Darkness doesn’t truely exist since its just an absence of light). However, giving a creating God, evil is just as existant as good is. This can be seen by an artist who paints. The artist paints areas, but some areas are left blank so the lack of color can show through. This is a stylistic descision, and exists in the final piece as much as the given colors do, and is just as intentional. If God is a creator, evil exists just as readily as good…
    a. “Evil is absence of good” Biblically, when God created the Earth, he said ‘It was good’. God has the ability to know the future, so he would know what would evenetually come of it. Yet, he still called it ‘good’. This means one of several things. Either God was lying (thus, making God partially evil as most would label lying an act of evil), God didn’t know what the future held (then all prophecies are just pointless, as God doesn’t truely know the future), the bible is wrong in places (therefore, most Christian beliefs are up for debate instead of being so clear-cut as they like to pretend), and, since god is omnipresent, God is not wholly good.

    b. “Evil is absence of God” So there are places God is not. God is supposed to be ‘Omnipresent’, or existing everywhere. If Evil, by this definition exists, then ‘God’ is not really ‘God’, but a pretender who’s only ‘Often-present’, not ‘Omnipresent’. And technically, although unlikely, it becomes possible to kill ‘God’ if everything was evil at once, leaving no place for ‘God’ to exist.

    c. “Evil is that which goes against God’s plan” Funny thing is, I hear this come from the mouths of the same people who often claim, “All things work towards God’s glory and towards his plan.” Talk about hypocricy! For something to go against God’s plan, assuming God qualifies as ‘God’, that can only mean a few things: Either it really is part of God’s plan, just doesn’t look like it, or something has the capability to oppose God AND WIN in some circumstances. In which case, God is not so absolute as believed, and not worthy of absolute trust.

    d. “Evil is that which actively strives against God” Of all the definitions, this is the one that holds up to the best scrutiny, however, God made the things that strive against him. And God knows the future. Therefore, God wanted to be strived against. In this case God wants evil. God created evil, and wants it.

    e. “Evil is that which goes against God’s rules” Again, as per the painting comment at the beginning, this means God created evil. He defined ‘good’ and ‘evil’ and gave options for both. If you believe scriptures, its is shown most clearly in his creation of ‘the tree of the knowledge of good and evil’. However, it should be pointed out that the ‘evil’ choice of eating of the tree was made when Adam and Eve had NO concept of Good or Evil yet. Thereby, God set it up to happen like that pretty much on his own. (Ever tell a small child not to touch something and then they have to touch it? It’s kind of like that. However, God’s better at reverse psychology than most parents, probably) In this case, God very obviously still created evil, and directly, but the even stranger possibility exists that God is trying to con us into doing evil! In this, Evil is obviously a design choice by God.

    The end result is this: Either God made evil (and intentionally at that) or ‘God’ isn’t all God’s cracked up to be.

  12. on 30 Nov 2006 at 2:55 pm 12.Joshu said …

    (oops, just realized it labeled the ’3′ part as ’4′, just so you don’t get confused by the typo.)

  13. on 03 Dec 2006 at 2:38 pm 13.MWStover said …

    There is, y’know, a tradition in certain strains of Gnostic Christianity that Yahweh (God of the Old Testament, doncha know) is in fact “The King of This World” — who’s usually known by his more colloquial nickname, Satan (“The Accuser” — from Job), and that Jesus was actually sent by the Creator of All Goodness and Light and Puppies and Such, in order to break Yahweh’s hold on this world.

    Which is also (probably by no coincidence at all) essentially the storyline of C.S. Lewis’s “Planets Trilogy”: OUT OF THE SILENT PLANET, PERELANDRA, and THAT HIDEOUS STRENGTH, which make pretty good reading, even for atheists. Lewis was pretty nimble when it comes to rationalizing Christian faith.

    If you want to beat up on Christians, don’t waste your time on lightweights.

  14. on 04 Dec 2006 at 6:22 pm 14.MrMiyagi said …

    Hi, Daniel

    Judging by the regular replies above, I assume you will find this reply of mine. I also assume that the ’18′ is a reference to your age.

    I’m 42 this year. I grew up as a christian in South Africa. Everyone in my family, and everyone I knew, was also christian to some degree. I don’t recall ever hearing from a non-believer.

    When I was 18, I was a devout christian. My faith grew such that at 20 I was teaching a sunday school class, and I had begun a correspondence bible study course. By 30, I began finding out about becoming a pastor myself.

    It was then that my thyroid packed up, it went overactive and I came within an inch of having a massive heart attack. Grave’s disease also severely alters your personality, making you extremely anxious and aggressive. This is simply because of permanently elevated adrenaline (the “fight or flight” hormone)

    It was then that I realised that to a great extent, or personalities are driven by chemicals, not attitude. No amount of praying was going to help, but a shot of radioactive iodine did the trick.

    From then came a long deconversion process, a time of emotional turmoil and self doubt, then anger at having been lied to, and being suckered all my life. Finally, after nearly 5 years, I achieved a level of peace I could not have imagined as a christian, a peace that maintains and sustains me all the time.

    You are still young, and you have (I hope) a long life to look forward to. All your posts contain only the repeated dogma you’ve heard from the pulpit. I can see you are intelligent, and there is a spark of independent thought detectable. Please don’t lose that.

    I’ve gone on too long already, but getting back to the original topic – Uncurable diseases. I can feel empathy for the individual in the story, and all other terminal patients, especially the young. What anxiety and fear must accompany them? Every day they are reminded of their mortality, every hour they sense and feel death stalking them. If religion gives them some hope and comfort, that is all well and good. My beef is with those who would profit by that person’s misfortune, those that sell false hope to him and his family.

    I hope that you will accept my opinion in the spirit (oh, boy) that it is given.

    Regards,
    Mike

  15. on 06 Dec 2006 at 12:47 am 15.Daniel, 18 said …

    I regret to announce that this may be my final response. I was fortunate enough to have a class giving a final everyday for the next week (minus the weekend of course). Therefore, time will no longer be a luxery – especially after the semester ends.

    Mike, assuming you might see this, I appreciate your friendly response. Faith and religion are hard to understand. I don’t presume to have it all figured out, but I do know that most people keep faith at arms length their whole life and totally miss out on the whole thing. Your only half way through with your life (I hope), and I pray that everything works out for you.

    I’ll be impressed if someone can sift through this some-what unorganized expression of what I believe. haha

    Now to my concluding point… If I am wrong and all this “Jesus stuff” is bogus, then I guess everyone would say it’s been a waste of life. I don’t believe so… This is why:
    If I spend my life on selfless ambition – what have I lost? What have I gained? I gain the satisfaction of my Father in heaven – that’s enough for me.
    “I dont believe in all that mumbo jumbo, Daniel. And besides, what if you’re wrong?”
    You believe what want, same as me – this is our God-given right. And I have no doubt in my faith – this is what Jesus wanted His disciples to do (you know, after every big miracle He was always asking something to the effect of, “Why do you still doubt?”).

    Enough about me, this is the whole point of my post:
    Let’s all imgaine for just a minute that I’m right. You can spare a minute of your 60-80 year life (if your the average person, I’m sorry for you if your under average), can’t you? What if we are “spiritual beings” as well as physical? What if there is a part of us that will live for eternity?
    -Just think, what if you could have been around for the last 400 years and actually seen the development of America. That seems like a really long time, huh?-
    Now try to compare a 2 inch thread to the length of the universe, from one end to the other. (Yes, I know, there’s nothing that suggests that the universe ends.) That’s my point. I would rather be a saint, living for God and those around me, than to spend my life trying to get ahead, just to find out it was just a piece of thread.

    That is worth the risk to me.

    Thank you for your time. Goodnight, and God bless.

  16. on 06 Dec 2006 at 5:17 pm 16.Kassandra said …

    Firstly, I have to say that I completely agree with Justin. Secondly I just want to say thank you, because this argument has helped me with my Bible assignment.

  17. on 10 Dec 2006 at 4:36 pm 17.Meri said …

    Daniel,

    In case you come back to look at this blog, I wanted to let you know that I read this exchange with interest. I also wanted to ask you two questions:
    1) Have you read what is on the “whywontgodhealamputees” website?
    2) Why is it that there are so many different religions in the world with so many diverse beliefs about God? If the God of the Old and New Testament is the one, true God, why would He sit back and let billions of people worship ‘false’ gods, convinced that they were leading righteous lives? Why would He allow them to be “deprived” of the blessings of Christianity? Why would he not reveal Himself, once and for all, so that everyone could get on board? Does that make sense to you?

    Good luck with your finals. Hope to see you back here some day.

  18. on 17 Dec 2006 at 6:20 pm 18.Shaunna said …

    i have a question for you all:
    is christianity just a crutch for weak people to lean on? and i dont only mean weak as in physically, im looking for emotionally and mentally too.

  19. on 20 Dec 2006 at 1:02 am 19.Tsdjrct said …

    Hello
    britney

    G’night

  20. on 20 Dec 2006 at 3:02 pm 20.Loi P said …

    “How about Scientology? That’s helped lots of people. You think Scientology is good?”
    Good point. Tom Cruise claims that Scientology helped him with his dislexia (or however it’s spelled). I have a dislexic Christian cousin and she hasn’t been “healed by God”.
    “Lewis was pretty nimble when it comes to rationalizing Christian faith.”
    He was also nuts. I’ve been reading The Screwtape Letters and he says that when a person prays they must get down on their knees. I highly doubt that you do so when you pray.
    Yes, I understand that he was intelligent but very smart people have believed stupid things.
    “Now, let’s be realistic… If you propose that any book’s content be evaluated by “one liners,” then ALL literature would be meaningless.”
    Stella! Stella!
    Sorry, I couldn’t help myself. ;)
    “is christianity just a crutch for weak people to lean on? and i dont only mean weak as in physically, im looking for emotionally and mentally too.”
    I did mention this a little earlier. Just because a smart person believes something doesn’t mean it’s true. So in other words, a person can be a Christian and still be very intelligent. Einstein was a Christian. Well, he was a Deist if you want specifics.
    Emotionally? I don’t think so. I think the only difference is the beliefs- “I can do this” or “I need somebody else’s help to do this”. When it comes down to it, it’s just a measure of self-confidence.
    That’s about all I want to say. Good day, you’ve all been very interesting!

  21. on 24 Dec 2006 at 5:39 am 21.MrMiyagi said …

    Hi, Shaunna

    You posed the question about whether christianity is just a crutch for weak people.

    I think you have already answered that question for yourself. Accept it, and continue searching. Follow many of the links here for more information. And hang in there, deconversion is a rough ride, but worth it!

    I only have one caveat regarding your question – The reference to ‘weak’ people. I don’t think most christians are weak. Not mentally, not physically, and certainly not emotionally. They’re not weak, they are just deluded. Someone has sold them a guilt trip and then sold them the ‘cure’ too. They’re so focussed on their failings that they can no longer see their strength. In fact, focussing on their own strength is seen as a sign of weakness!

    Happy holidays to all, and let’s see what 2007 brings.

    Regards,
    Mike

  22. on 05 Jan 2007 at 11:43 am 22.Matthew said …

    Linked

    Nothing is so aggravating as calmness

  23. on 05 Jan 2007 at 12:19 pm 23.Abigail said …

    Referer

    I care for riches, to make giftsTo friends, or lead a sick man back to healthWith ease and plenty. Else small aid is wealthFor daily gladness; once a man be doneWith hunger, rich and poor are all as one

  24. on 05 Jan 2007 at 1:29 pm 24.Matthew said …

    Readed

    God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference

  25. on 05 Jan 2007 at 1:54 pm 25.Matthew said …

    Readed

    When you hire people that are smarter than you are, you prove you are smarter than they are

  26. on 05 Jan 2007 at 3:28 pm 26.Thomas Fahy said …

    Dear Matthew,

    I’m not sure what bearing your statement has on the headline issue, but the statement is a glowing example of a logical fallacy. A logical fallacy in the context of this post is likely to lead to an argumentum ad logicam–an argument from fallacy. Consequently, any subsequent conclusions drawn form the argument will be false.

    In a rational world, logic has the nifty ability to shut down debates that do not subscribe to reason, given your opponent comprehends fully the requirements of logical debate.

    For more information relating to logical fallacies and argumentation theory, click on my name. You will find very simple guidelines with which debates in a blog of this kind may be constructed. Argumentation is a simple and elegant means whereby which many individuals with contentious viewpoints may resolve their differences in an orderly fashion. It requires a little homework, but it is worthwhile.

    Sincerely,

    Thomas Fahy

  27. on 17 Jan 2007 at 3:50 pm 27.Daniel said …

    Readed

    The Promised Land always lies on the other side of a Wilderness

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