Author Topic: Do they really believe?  (Read 15456 times)

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Offline screwtape

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #116 on: October 27, 2010, 03:19:14 PM »
Hard to set aside 1) there is no factual evidence that Jesus did not exist. 

What would constitute factual evidence of a thing not existing?  An example I often use is a dog I do not own.  I do not own a dog.  How would I go about proving that?  There is no evidence.  My only evidence is a lack of evidence.  What positive "factual evidence" could I provide that would establish for anyone the fact I do not own a dog?

Points 2) and 3) are covered by that.

Or, if I wanted to demonstrate to you the poor reasoning you are using: there is no factual evidence mermaids do not exist. There is no factual evidence that Lord Krishna was not divine. There is no factual evidence Sasquatch is a hoax.  I could go on, but if you get the point, we can stop here.


my little four year old wants to hit her sister, and then not get in trouble, but if I am a good parent I will discipline her and teach her there are consequences for bad behavior. 

Hell and your daughter are not equivalent analogies.  Do you punish her eternally?  Or is your punishment meant as a lesson?  I presume it is a lesson to encourage good behavior for the rest of her life.  What then, is the lesson of hell?  We learn it too late for it to be of any benefit.  And if jesus H took our punishment already, how can you even say there is a hell for me to go to?


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Offline velkyn

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #117 on: October 27, 2010, 03:35:00 PM »
why, hello phelix, back to dodge more posts? 

I believe.  I was raised in a Christian home and taught the bible, but it wasn't until I experienced what my limited vocabulary would call conviction.  It wasn't guilt, it was a realization that my life didn't line up with God's plan, as much of it as I knew (from former bible studies).
ah, more of the knowign what God "really meant". 

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I was living by my rules and a life void of any submission to the teachings and commands of God as lined out in the bible.  I began to pray and ask for forgiveness, I truly repented, in the sense that my life radically changed that day. I no longer had the desire to smoke (2 packs a day), to drink (i would pass out most days - bartender and bestfriend owned the bar), to cuss it was my only language of expression, and to womanize (my goal was to never go a day without sex with a girl).  My desires became to live by what God's word taught, to love others, to forgive, to abstain from sex till marriage, to abstain from all appearances of evil, to try and tame the tongue, to treat my body like I would the temple of God, not to destroy it or defame it.
and a bit of glurge to make it sound so dramatic. 
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Now that doesn't mean I always succeeded in living the perfect Christian life, but the Gospel doesn't fix your sinful nature, it covers it.  The proof of one's faith should be seen in how they live their life, but not condemned for every mistake.  I believe that God did send Jesus, to die for my sins.  I don't have any doubt to the truth of the story or to the truth of my salvation, or the truth of scriptures, what I don't believe is that I can express or argue my belief in such a way as to convince anyone.  But I do believe, I choose to believe, and am convinced.
so it's basically useless.  I have not seen one Christian act any better than any other human being, just because they were a believer.  And of course, you don't doubt it. if you did, you'd just be plain ol' phelix, who just has to live life like everyone else and not have a special invisible friend.
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Offline Asmoday

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #118 on: October 27, 2010, 03:50:11 PM »
And if jesus H took our punishment already, how can you even say there is a hell for me to go to?
See, that is the beauty of the scheme. Jesus "took our punishment" but when it comes down to it he took "our" punishment selectively. If for whatever reason you don't jump through the hoops when the big sky daddy tells you to, it turns out that Jesus hasn't taken your punishment but you have to face it on your own.


Guy A: Hello there! I just wanted to tell you that I paid for your parking ticket. In fact I paid for the parking tickets of all the people in town.

Guy B: That's...uh...nice, I guess. But I never got a parking ticket.

Guy A: Don't be silly, of course you did. Your great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-great-grandfather once got a parking ticket from my ancestor. See, says so right here in the book a friend of mine wrote. And that parking ticket has to be paid by every member of your family. Says so in my book.

Guy B: That's crazy...

Guy A: Nah, don't worry, I already paid the ticket for you.

Guy B: Well...uhm...thanks for that then... *cough* weirdo *cough*

Guy A: Now, let's go to your house so I can explain to you how you have to thank me for it for the rest of your life, what you must do from now on and what you are not allowed to do from now on.

Guy B: No way! You think I'm stupid? Get lost, buddy!

Guy A: Well, it's your choice of course. If you don't want to take it, it's fine with me. See that guy over there? He'll collect the debt of the parking ticket and will just torture you for the rest of your life as payment for the ticket. He really gets off from that kinda stuff.

Guy B: What? You said you paid that ticket already!

Guy A: Well, of course I did. I paid for everybody. Only if you say No to my offer you'll still have to pay for your own despite me having paid for everybody already. I don't see what's so hard to understand about that? Anyway, your choice. Take your time, no pressure.


Obviously nobody would buy into that stuff in the real world if someone stood in front of them trying to sell them that. Strangely though in the real world it works like a charm for people going around telling everybody an invisible man paid their parking ticket for them.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2010, 03:54:17 PM by Asmoday »
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Offline Alzael

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #119 on: October 27, 2010, 03:59:26 PM »
^^^^ The one thing that you left out though, is that you can't even pay the parking ticket yourself. You have to accept this guys offer in order to pay the ticket. This is why I always say that god is the ultimate mob boss.
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Online Dante

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #120 on: October 27, 2010, 04:07:56 PM »
Obviously nobody would buy into that stuff in the real world if someone stood in front of them trying to sell them that. Strangely though in the real world it works like a charm for people going around telling everybody an invisible man paid their parking ticket for them.

That's because you can't PROVE that the invisble man didn't pay your parking ticket!

I mean really, how delusional is that?
Actually it doesn't. One could conceivably be all-powerful but not exceptionally intelligent.

Offline phelix22

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #121 on: October 27, 2010, 05:42:04 PM »

Faulty logic, not that I had many expectations as far as logic was concerned. The burden of proof is on the person making the claim. Without evidence to prove that Jesus did exist, of which there is none, the only rational conclusion is that he didn't.

Wow, no evidence?  Ever studied antiquity.  Ever heard of BC and AD.  Ever read the Matthew Mark Luke John.  I mean this discussion board is full of people stating there is no God, they demand proof of anyone who contradicts, and yet I ask for proof and I get, "na hah, you gotta prove it." - paraphrase. 


No factual evidence that he did suffer either. Especially when one considers that if he were a representation of god there's no reason why he would actually suffer. There's nothing to stop him from simply not feeling pain if he wanted to.
see above


Same as above, no evidence that he did die, or even that he lived. All that happened to Jesus is that he resurrected himself a few days later, then went up to party in heaven. So essentially Jesus at worst had a bad couple of days for us. Consider me underwhelmed.
  same as above.  At least see the double standard here.



If you were an all-powerful being then you would have no need to punish her. If all you wanted was to teach her to be good you could do that without doing anything bad or unpleasant to her. You certainly wouldn't have to throw her a pit of fire. Anything you wanted to do or to her could be done without any need for punishment, unless you just got kicks out of punishing your children. Also since you created everything, you created sin. You gave her the capacity for sin and to engage in bad behaviour, you didn't have to. Being all-knowing you knew she would commit the sin when you gave her the ability. This would make you the one responsible for when your daughter did something wrong, at least for the most part.

Here is a big can of worms you are bringing into the conversation "God created Sin".  but lets skip to the end, i would be responsible for her doing something wrong because I gave her the freedom to do what she wants.  Ummm no.  her choice, she knew the rules, she broke the rules, she pays the price.  If it were my fault for giving her the freedom, then couldn't we blame the government for every crime?

Offline phelix22

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #122 on: October 27, 2010, 05:44:06 PM »
be back tomorrow to "dodge" posts more.

Offline Asmoday

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #123 on: October 27, 2010, 06:33:24 PM »
Wow, no evidence?  Ever studied antiquity.  Ever heard of BC and AD.  Ever read the Matthew Mark Luke John.  I mean this discussion board is full of people stating there is no God, they demand proof of anyone who contradicts, and yet I ask for proof and I get, "na hah, you gotta prove it." - paraphrase.
I just have to say a few words about this.

phelix22, either you haven't informed yourself much about this or your knowledge consists solely of materials from Christian fundamentalist sources.

There is no evidence for Jesus' existence; neither for a Jesus as described in the bible nor for a historical and purely human Jesus.

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Ever studied antiquity.
If you are talking about Josephus' "Antiquities of the Jews"; that one is a forgery.

If you are talking about the antiquity in general then you are also going to be disappointed. Not only is there not a single record of Jesus from the time he's supposed to have lived but all other accounts used by Christians as evidence for a historical Jesus have been shown to be either forgeries or they are not evidence at all because they are written about the beliefs of Christians decades (in some cases centuries) after the time Jesus is supposed to have lived.

And I hope you don't think the bible counts as evidence. The bible is the book making the claim. Just like the quran is not evidence for the events and claims made in the quran.

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Ever heard of BC and AD.
No evidence at all.

This dating method has been invented by a sixth century monk named Dionysius Exiguus (emphasis on "sixth century") and it was not even commonly in use before 800 CE.

But if you count this as evidence for the existence of Jesus already, then what about all the other dating methods in the world? Is the Muslim dating method evidence for the existence of Mohammed and the truth of the quran? Is the Chinese calendar evidence for the gods connected to the years?

And what of the names for our days? Is the use of the name "thursday" evidence that Thor exists?

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Ever read the Matthew Mark Luke John.
Ever informed yourself when the gospels have been written and by whom?

The earliest of the gospels has been written 70 CE. Not one of the gospels has been written by an eye witness or the apostle of the same name. In fact the books we know as the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John today had been around for a long long time before they got their names.

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they demand proof of anyone who contradicts, and yet I ask for proof and I get, "na hah, you gotta prove it."
You don't seem to understand how things work.

Christians are making the claim "God exists" so it is their duty to show that their claim is true. Just the same as if I claimed Aliens would communicate telepathically with earth through toilet seats. In that case I would have to show my claim is true.

As screwtape has already explained to you: You can't prove a negative. I can't prove the Flying Spaghetti Monster does not exist. I can't prove Russel's teapot does not exist.

BUT that you can not prove something does not exist does not mean in reverse that the baseless claim of it's existence is valid.
That is what you and many Christians are going for, but you are the ones who have to show your claim "God exists" is true. Not the other way round.
« Last Edit: October 27, 2010, 06:38:40 PM by Asmoday »
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Offline tradesecret

Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #124 on: October 27, 2010, 07:38:35 PM »
I was skimming through your post and just had a question.

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My God does not damn you.
Since you say that your god doesn't damn me could you please explain Revelation 21:8?
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"But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."
I'm one of those unbelievers and according to this verse I will be in the "lake that burns with fire and brimstone."  Now I enjoy swimming but not in a burning lake.  So if I have to be in this burning lake for all eternity for not believing in your god, well it sounds like I'm damned.



I can certainly appreciate that this verse provides us with an example of punishment for the above mentioned groups of people.   Is this damnation brought on by God or by the person? Is that not one of the age old questions? My view is that God as judge certainly will meet out his justice in his own time. I suppose it could even be understood that this is an example of God damning people. I take the view that there is a first cause and a second cause. God made the world and the people. The people sinned fully understanding that to sin deserved death. Therefore God sentences them to death. Man or humanity however chose to sin - and thereby damning themselves to the consequences of that action. Similarly in our society. A person kills someone fully knowing that if caught they will go to prison or in your country maybe get the death sentence. It is still the judge who determines the sentence. So really both the criminal and the judge damn the person to whatever punishment the person receives.

My view is that God set up the world and humanity chose to do it their own way. God is hence a first cause - but humanity is the second cause.  I suppose that is why I take the view that God does not damn - although I can see how it can be read that way. I think blaming God as the first cause for damning people to Hell is like the crook saying - it is the Judge's fault for finding me guilty of murder. A good example of blameshifting and attempting to avoid responsibility. 

Offline tradesecret

Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #125 on: October 27, 2010, 08:01:22 PM »
Oh dear....you don't get it, do you?

My God does not damn you. Why do you think you are so important that God is just waiting up there or wherever he is - waiting to damn you. ..... You dont even believe in God - so I cannot imagine why it would be a problem for you.
It isn't, because I don't believe a word of it.  What I a, trying to do is get YOU to see how many contradictions there are in what you believe, how much mental gymnastics you have to go through to keep your impression of your god and being good.

Read your comments here:
...without the faith that God has given to me - then I would not be able to believe....How does someone drum up faith? It is not like you can go down to the local market and buy some. .....I say that I have faith because God gave it to me.
You are quite clear that faith and belief comes from your god.  Your god doesn't intervene, that person doesn't have faith.  Your god has not intervened with me, so I have no faith.  Your god, therefore, has decided I will have no faith.

And, when I die, by your god's rules, for having no faith I will suffer for eternity.

Read that again.  Because of what your god decided, I will suffer forever for something I have no control over.  Your words.  Your Bible.

That's the point your waffley reply conveniently skipped.  That if your god solely determines who has faith, then to condemn the faithless for HIS inactions is nothing less than evil.

You know I always find it amusing that people who dont believe in God devote so much time and energy in discussing God.

I do it mostly because there are so many people like you that worship a monster, and call it good.  And if that was a private thing you did in your home, then I'd have no problem.  But all those monster-worshippers are out in public, condemning, pushing for laws that meet their god's dictates.....your belief impacts on my life, despite the fact that it has no foundation.  THAT is why I spend time opposing something I do not believe.

Actually when (or if) you die in Hell - that will be because you have sinned - not because my God did not give you faith.

Your presumption is that you are innocent and that God is responsible for any wrong that you do and therefore responsible to make sure you dont get damned. I reject that presumption.

Nobody who ever gets sentenced to Hell will be undeserving or innocent. The Bible teached that all people have sinned of their own free volition and therefore everybody deserves death - or Hell (whatever you want to call it).  All people including both you and ME deserve Hell - we are all if you like living on death row because we have all decided to do our own thing - sin. That is the point that you are avoiding.  That is the real issue.

The fact that I was living on death row - in sin meant that the only way out of it for me was for someone else from myself to do something to help set me free.  I could not do it myself. I cannot will myself to be alive or will myself out of prison. IF I am dead in sin then I am dead.  If the governor of the prison or God in this case determines for whatever reason to give me faith or to die on a cross - it has nothing to do with me. I cannot will him to do it - I cannot will him not to do it. I was never asked if I wanted Jesus to die on the cross. I was never asked if I wanted faith. This is why I say choice is irrelevent and why I say that every other form of discrimination is irrelevent - race, birth, sex, sexual orientation, religion, social position, social wealth, profession, colour, intelliegence, etc.  I did not choose God - I could not choose God. I was dead in sin.

If you suffer in eternity it is absolutely your choice and your own responsibility. You reject God - well I call that sin - but that is your choice. We have all sinned - no one is innocent (including children, the handicapped, foetuses, intellectually challenged, etc) If this is the starting point - then choice becomes irrelevent. At that point - if God is merciful to any and give grace and faith - no one can say that they deserved it. No one can say that they earnt it. He does not have to give any mercy. He does thankfully.  But he does not have to - and if we expect that he should then we are practising "guilt manipulation".  No governor has to grant a pardon to any prisoner. If a governor does not grant freedom - he is not evil.  It is the prisoner who broke the law. It is the prisoner who condemned himself. TO blame the governor only demonstrates that the person thinks that they did not do anything to deserve their punishment. (Now I grant that is a more interesting question but it is a different issue)


Offline tradesecret

Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #126 on: October 27, 2010, 08:05:49 PM »
Tradesecret:

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How does someone drum up faith? It is not like you can go down to the local market and buy some. The local church does not have any in storage that you can collect or borrow.



Wrong. Your brain is very much like a market. With shelves stocked full of ideas and thoughts and emotions and beliefs to choose from if you so desire. Faith is in the beliefs section of your brains market. God is in the ideas section. If one decides to pull the god idea off the shelf then they immediately must go to the beliefs section and grab some faith off the shelf to make the idea of a god believable to their minds. Since there's no tangible or physical connection possible between the two shelf choices, the compatible check feature of your brain, the faculty of reason, tells you that this is not a very good idea and that there's something wrong here.

But along comes the emotions and spoils everything. The fear of death and wishful deluded thinking usurp the power of the faculty of reason in some, and their brain at that point is powerless and abused.

The church helps keep the faith shelves stocked in the brains of the deluded and wishful thinkers.



Thank you for that moment of laughter.

Offline Alzael

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #127 on: October 27, 2010, 08:12:05 PM »
Wow, no evidence?  Ever studied antiquity.  Ever heard of BC and AD.  Ever read the Matthew Mark Luke John.  I mean this discussion board is full of people stating there is no God, they demand proof of anyone who contradicts, and yet I ask for proof and I get, "na hah, you gotta prove it." - paraphrase.  

Yes I have heard of BC and AD. The concept was created by a monk named Dionysius to replace the Diocletian years because he didn't like having a system that was reminiscent of a guy who liked to torture christians for fun. He wanted to number it back to the conception of Jesus, and he miscalculated by several years. I've read Matthew, Mark, Luke, John. All of which have questionable authorship, none of whom ever met Jesus and likely weren't born before his death. In fact none of the bible authors ever met Jesus. They're not even all that consistent in what they write, especially John who probably came last.

In the case of Mark, who likely came first he claims to be a follower of Peter. So much so in fact that there was a time when his gospel was known as the Petrine gospel. A lot of scholars like to place his place his writing of the gospel at around 70 CE, but since he uses a lot of words and phrases that also appear in the letters of Ignatius it could conceivably be closer to the second century. Mark also leaves out most of the important aspects of the Jesus-myth like the virgin birth, the three wise-men or anything really surrounding his birth. Instead he refers to him as coming from Nazareth.

Matthew used Mark as inspiration but he wanted the Jesus-myths to be palatable to his fellow Jews so he tried to work in some add-ons to what Mark wrote. He deliberately left out detail in order to have seven generations each from Abraham to David and David to the Exile, and the Exile to Jesus. It should also be noted that Matthews geneology doesn't fit with other geneologys mentioned in the bible.

Luke was basically the same for the gentiles. He took Mark and used whole tracts of it and then changed or added many other things to suit his needs. Because he was writing to a Roman audience as well he tries to portray them better than in the other gospels. As example in Mark, Jesus is whipped by Roman soldiers, but in Luke it is Herod's soldiers.

John tried to bring the Jewish and newly-formed Christians back together with his gospel, thus making it compatible with both faiths, which is why his is so radically different from the previous three.

But this is digressing since nothing you said even begins to constitute proof for anything. You didn't even make the attempt which is very sad. As for the last bit, as Asmoday pointed out and I pointed out previously it is you who are making the claim. There is nothing for us to prove.

Here is a big can of worms you are bringing into the conversation "God created Sin".  but lets skip to the end, i would be responsible for her doing something wrong because I gave her the freedom to do what she wants.  Ummm no.  her choice, she knew the rules, she broke the rules, she pays the price.  If it were my fault for giving her the freedom, then couldn't we blame the government for every crime?

It's your fault because you made her the way she is. You created sin not her. And you can't claim to give her the freedom to do what she wants, because you're punishing her for doing it. This is not free will, it is circumstantial will. Free will requires a lack of consequences and constrainsts, hence 'free'. If you can only do what you want within certain restrictions than you do not have freedom. As you yourself said yourself, there are rules. This is not giving her freedom. You could have made her incapable of doing bad things. This can't be considered an imposition on freedom because this is already the case. There are many things that we as humans cannot choose to do. Such as fire energy rays from our eyes. We cannot choose this because we lack the ability to do it. So we could have simply been created without the ability to do bad things and we could still have free will, assuming you can even prove that we have free will. And again, as an all-knowing being you knew that all of this would happen when you created her, so you knew from the start that she would do this and you would have to punish her and did nothing to stop it.
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Offline tbright

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #128 on: October 27, 2010, 08:17:32 PM »
Christians are making the claim "God exists" so it is their duty to show that their claim is true. Just the same as if I claimed Aliens would communicate telepathically with earth through toilet seats. In that case I would have to show my claim is true.

I've seen this many times. We have offered many, many evidences, which you continue to claim are not evidence. Your threshold of proof is beyond any reasonable measure or standard for what would be acceptable as proof for that day and time. So it's not that evidence has not been presented, because it has. The issue is what you would consider enough evidence to be worthy of consideration to make a change.

For me, OT prophecies that were realized in the person of Jesus Christ were very, very convincing. Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.

For many of the prophecies fulfilled, see HERE.

Offline Astreja

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #129 on: October 27, 2010, 08:47:01 PM »
Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.
I have a much simpler explanation.  The rabbis performing the circumcisions noticed that babies circumcised on Day 8 bled less than other babies, and by the time the scriptures were written down it was already a tradition to wait till Day 8.
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Offline tradesecret

Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #130 on: October 27, 2010, 08:47:56 PM »
Tradesecret,

Your post is pretty typical of Christians coming here, the usual backpedaling, etc.  Do you understand why I think it’s nonsense when you claim to “have known God’s presence”?  It’s because all theists, of any religion, claim the same thing. Are all gods true then? 

I was a Christian too. I was sure God was good and sure that I “felt” something.  But I could also feel that I heard Santa’s bootsteps on the roof too. Not exactly the best verification of the existence of some mythical being.  And what a bizaare church you supposedly went too.  Talk about a textbook example of how ridiculous religion is, when Christians are all sure that they and only they are “right”. Just like you.   

You have claimed this  “God made me believe his unbelievable story” which is, frankly, hilarious. What a great way to dispense with any personal responsibility.  Oooh, God made me do it.  LOL  Sorry, don’t believe it at all.  You found a myth you liked that made you feel good and you now want some divine excuse for accepting such nonsense. Religion is a heady draught.  You become the best thing ever, so important that a omnipotent/omniscient/ omnibenevolent deity is concerned for you and only you. I do love how Christians decide that they are so special and that everyone else, who God didn’t take a *personal* involvement in are damned just by that whim.     

I’m sure you wouldn’t use the term that God altered your mind
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God made me believe his unbelievable story
but that’s exactly what you are claiming.  You’ve created your own religion, so you can feel superior that God has told you what he “really” meant.  You pick and choose which pretty baubles you find attractive.  and if your mom prays to her god that you’ll change back, I do think she thinks you’ve lost faith and are damned.  Why pray if she didn’t feel that way?  Why appeal to this god which is ostensible your god, to change you if you aren’t wrong?  You want to claim that God changed you and then you want to turn around and claim that it’s a choice.  That’s a contradiction, TS, you can’t have your cake and eat it too.  And comparing this forcible action by God to a human trying to change a person’s mind is just pathetic.  I do enjoy when Christians must depower their god in an attempt to make a poor analogy. 

You have made claim after claim about God, first and foremost, that God *made* you believe. See in the preceeding paragraph, no equivocation, you are trying to claim a fact.   

Quote
My God does not damn you. Why do you think you are so important that God is just waiting up there or wherever he is - waiting to damn you. What a peculiar thing to think.  I do believe in the elect. You dont even believe in God - so I cannot imagine why it would be a problem for you. You know I always find it amusing that people who dont believe in God devote so much time and energy in discussing God. Welll that is you choice.
As has been already noted, funny on how your bible says that your God does indeed damn people.  And I love your indignant whines about how dare anyone think they are so important that God is just waiting up there. Hilarious to hear that from someone who is sure that God is just waiting to force belief on him. It doesn’t’ surprise me at all that a vain person like you is sure that they are “elect”.  All of this whining about how you made a choice and then you come up with that.  And the reason that I choose to discuss God is to demonstrate how ridiculous it is and to demonstrate how ridiculous believers are. Christians are so silly.  None of you can agree on what your God really means but you are all sure you have the right answer.  We have Christians saying that there are elect or that it is totally free will; that people are damned or not; that you need grace and/or faith and/or works to get saved; that god gives faith or not; etc.  Of course it is of no benefit to you to actually have to think about your faith, if you did that, you’d likely lose it.  But you have so much of your self-worth wrapped up in this belief that you run away, whining that “I don’t have to prove God to you.”  And that you have never met anyone who has taken up the challenge to prove the bible wrong is a lovely indicator on just how willfully ignorant you are.  I’m quite willing to take it up, just by pointing out that none of the vital events of the bible have any evidence of ever happening and plenty of evidence to the contrary. 

And you’re right, it definitely doesn’t take a genius to believe in God.  Nice appeal to a fallacy, http://www.nizkor.org/features/fallacies/appeal-to-popularity.html,  there, TS.   



Hello  thank you for the compliment. Firstly, I do not think that I have back-peddled. Often when people discuss things for the first time - there will be misunderstandings about different words and meanings and ideas. People here seem to come from a broad background - and this is why clarification is necessary. Clarification is not necessarily back - peddling - but if it makes you feel better - think whatever you like.

MY church was bizzarre - and we certainly had lots of views - church people generally get along pretty well - it is more than doctrine. My sports teams always had people from many backgrounds - difference does not have to be big factor.

You say you were a Christian - well good for you.  I am not going argue the point - it would be of no use for me or you. You are what you are. You know my view that once you part of the elect - that election cannot be lost. Feelings have never been a big thing for me - the LDS have feelings too - bright fuzzy warm feelings. The way one lives their life is a better demonstration of what one really believes.

If you understood the elect and calvinism - you would not make comments that show your ignorance about me thinking I am special.  

My mum does not believe I am damned despite your view - how sweet you are :)  She does pray for me and she does pray that I will become a bapist once again. Like me - she believes that each of us at different levels of maturity. She thinks I am growing through a phaze.

I am not picking and choosing my religion. I follow the tenants of traditional Christianity - from Christ, Paul, Augustine, Luther, Calvin.  This is the Reformed view and in accord with the Westminster Confession of Faith.  It is true that I have rejected much of Catholicism - and Dispensationalism and much of modern fundamentalism.  So what? My faith is similar to many millions of people and disimilar from millions - perhaps billions others.  Atheists have no common theology (allegedly) but the doctrine that God does not exist. You think I throw up bad logic?

It is true that I dont think that God has altered my mind - and perhaps that is just part of my foolishness.  I think it is more that he opened my eyes - you call it what you will. It is possible that I am simply brainwashed -(anything is possible).

I have explained that God made be believe and that after that I see it (at least in my own mind) that it is a choice. Of course I cannot choose to leave this view - but I would not even if I could.  That is not a contradiction. That is something you have not even come close to establishing.

You say that I waffle - (and I do) but you are also guilty. Wrt to God damning - I have answered that notion above in the previous post. Shortly and for your sake - I say that God is the first cause - and God is the judge. As the first cause - he is in control of all things -as the judge he does condemn.  But people in this world sin - and they know the consequences even if they dont believe that it is true. All people sin. Crooks cannot blame the judge for the punishment they have been sentenced.  The crook can only blame themselves. To move away from personal responsibility to blame the judge is absurd.

Why should Christians agree? If we agree - then it is a sham - if we disagree - then it is false. The obvious conclusion should be that whether Christians agree or not - is not really the issue. What about large groups of Christians? Take the Eastern Orthodox Church - their doctrines have not changed in 1000 years. Does this make them right? Who knows?

As for me believing that I am right - what a strange and pecular mind you must have to even think that this is arrogant or elitist or whatever. Every person on this planet thinks what they think is right - when they know it is wrong - then they change it - dont they? I mean do you have any thoughts in your brain that you know are wrong and yet you hold onto them? There are many thoughts that I have that I dont know the answer to - and there are some that I believe that I am right. Of course I am always open to being proved wrong. But what is proof? Does it even exist?

Are you saying that you are prepared to use your own faith to believe in God? If you look at my challenge - I said it had to be in relation to the God of the Bible - not to a God you can just pick and choose. I think this should be interesting - even if it is just to see you try and prove a point.

For the record - I am not running away from trying to prove God exists. I simply am not going to enter into a debate about whether God exists or not. i hold to presuppositional apologetics as a a standard. The Bible never attempts to prove God exists - it assume He does. I do as well. For me to attempt to prove God exists - gives away the farm from the beginning. It begins with the assumption that God does not exist. An assumption that I cannot and do not agree with.

Offline tbright

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #131 on: October 27, 2010, 09:07:19 PM »
Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.
I have a much simpler explanation.  The rabbis performing the circumcisions noticed that babies circumcised on Day 8 bled less than other babies, and by the time the scriptures were written down it was already a tradition to wait till Day 8.

Actually, many would have died and the Hebrew people would have been defenseless and short many male defenders. And external bleeding was not necessarily the issue as internal bleeding is the primary problem for infants their first week of life.

Offline Asmoday

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #132 on: October 27, 2010, 09:41:45 PM »
Christians are making the claim "God exists" so it is their duty to show that their claim is true. Just the same as if I claimed Aliens would communicate telepathically with earth through toilet seats. In that case I would have to show my claim is true.

I've seen this many times. We have offered many, many evidences, which you continue to claim are not evidence. Your threshold of proof is beyond any reasonable measure or standard for what would be acceptable as proof for that day and time. So it's not that evidence has not been presented, because it has. The issue is what you would consider enough evidence to be worthy of consideration to make a change.
*sigh*

No, the threshold is not beyond reasonable measure or standard. We would not be having this conversation if Christians could present evidence instead of a bundle of forgeries and writings that are not even close to evidence for a historical Jesus.

Besides, you make it sound like this was only an issue of atheists. Guess what, every non-fundamentalist christian archaeologist and historian asks the same question and comes to the same answer: There is no evidence for a historical Jesus.


Quote
For me, OT prophecies that were realized in the person of Jesus Christ were very, very convincing.

[...]

For many of the prophecies fulfilled, see HERE.
Have you missed the part were I said that the bible is not evidence for the claims made in the bible?

I guess so, otherwise you'd realise that this is a circular argument you are building there.

You can not prove the bible with the bible. Just like you can't prove the quran with the quran. Don't you realise that these "prophesies" are not evidence since all the authors of the NT had full access to the OT?

But concerning those prophecies; what about the hundreds if not thousands of prophesies Jesus did not fulfill? LINK
He also did not even come close to fulfill the original, most important prophesies required to be called messiah.

Quote
Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.
Got any links to scientific medical sites for that?

[Also: What Astreja already said. (BTW. bleeding more does not equal death as you would like to have it. It simply means bleeding more, not bleeding out.)]

And while we're at it, if that impressed you so much, could you also tell us how much you were impressed by God's supreme knowledge of insects having just 4 legs, bats being actually birds and of God's absolute wisdom concerning genetics and breeding, when the bible says the colour of young goats is influenced by the colours of the poles the parents mated in front of.
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Offline JeffPT

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #133 on: October 27, 2010, 10:31:03 PM »
For me, OT prophecies that were realized in the person of Jesus Christ were very, very convincing.

This is just so stupid.  The minute you understand that the Old Testament was written BEFORE the New Testament, a third grader could see that all they had to do was WRITE IT IN that Jesus was the fulfilled all the prophecies.  When you couple that with the fact that the NT writers wrote 30 to 70 years AFTER he died, it is a no brainer that they made it up.  Nobody was there to counter the claims!  And when you also combine it with the fact that the bible has some completely outrageous claims that are not supported by any outside sources AT ALL, can you not see why we disregard the "evidence" you all present as completely worthless?  I just don't see how a thinking human being can believe what you claim to believe.  It's so dumb!   

Your threshold of proof is beyond any reasonable measure or standard for what would be acceptable as proof for that day and time.

Do you want to know what would be acceptable as evidence worthy of consideration?  Ok let me give a few things you could provide that would help validate the claims a bit. 

A. 2 or 3 independent, contemporary sources indicating that Jesus existed as a historical figure.
B. Written reports by eyewitnesses who claimed to see the actual resurrection take place, and not just "an empty tomb" for which we could have a million    natural explanations. 
C. Something akin to a non-fake Shroud of Turin that could be accurately dated to within a few years of Jesus supposed death.
D. Evidence of detailed fulfilled prophecy from the NT.
E. Multiple eyewitness reports from people who saw all the dead people get up out of the ground and walk around Jerusalem.

This is not asking a lot.  I am not asking for videotape of his entire life.  I am not asking for DNA testing.  These are basic things that you would expect to find in order to validate any historical claims being made. Do you really think of this stuff as beyond any reasonable measure?  Really?   

Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8Th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8Th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.

This?  This is your evidence? The most powerful being in the universe wants foreskins on the 8th day because we CLOT best on the 8th day, and thus we run a smaller risk of DYING from the procedure?   Well, if this is the case, don't you think it would have been a lot easier to make people NOT have to circumcise in the first place?  What kind of sick cosmic plan has a diety saying "Hey, give me your foreskins.  I love them! But don't cut 'till the 8th day because I don't want anyone to bleed out from it!" If you had a single shred of intelligence in you, you would understand that it would be far safer not to cut off the foreskins and cause any bleeding in the first place, regardless of the timing you mention. 

On digging a bit, the only person I can find that makes this claim at all is named S.I. McMillan, who, of course, is a religious nut job who happens to have medical training.  He seems to have written a few books and they all revolve around living via the biblical teachings.  Every site that mentioned him was a Christian site, and I could not find one single peer reviewed research article to back up what he claims about the 8th day prothrombin levels being highest.  Could you please post any peer reviewed documentation that backs up this "research"? 

But even if was proven to be true, let's look at the risks involved with circumcision vs. just leaving it alone...  Here is an entire page of them, listed in alphabetical order...  http://www.cirp.org/library/complications/

This was written in big, bright red letters in the middle of the page and I thought it was worth quoting here.

[CIRP Comment: No one knows if a newborn baby has a bleeding disorder. Although circumcision cuts through arteries and veins that provide blood to the foreskin, it is not customary to do a clotting factor test prior to circumcision. If a bleeding disorder exists it will be discovered only during the course of the operation.

Post-circumcision bleeding is an extremely serious matter. Substantial bleeding cannot be tolerated, because the quantity of blood is an infant's body is quite small. Bleeding can lead to exsanguination, followed by hypovolemic shock, followed by death. Post-circumcision bleeding requires immediate medical attention.]


So God, in his infinite wisdom, chose the 8th day to chop at baby peckers because it was the best day to avoid clotting issues, but he didn't think that maybe it was a better idea NOT to go hacking at it until they were much older, because compared to an adult, a baby has very little blood in their body to start with, and the risk of death is much less?  The average adult has around 10 pints of blood in their body.  A newborn under 1 month has around 10 ounces.  Yeah, God sure is smart!  Did you know, on average, 117 children a year die from botched circumcisions?   (Journal of Boyhood Studies, Vol. 4, No. 1, Spring 2010, 78-90)  Do you have the guts to say the truth?  That all 117 of those children died because their parents were stupid? 
 
I just don't get it.  It's completely moronic.  All of it.  Circumcision is genital mutilation and it should be a criminal offense to perform it to children who have no say in it at all.  If someone is willing to have it done to them later in life, then fine, let them choose it themselves.  But doing it to a defenseless child is an abomination. 

No, tbright, God is completely fake.  Top to bottom fake.  Nothing about it is true.  There is no such thing as the Christian God.  Circumcision is stupid and dangerous at any age, the prophecies are easily understood for what they are once you understand the timing of the writings, and all the so called "evidence" that all of you produce amounts to zero.  I have little hope for you ever getting out of your delusional state, but I wish you luck with it nonetheless. 

Whenever events that are purported to occur in our best interest are as numerous as the events that will just as soon kill us, then intent is hard, if not impossible to assert. NDT

Offline ParkingPlaces

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #134 on: October 27, 2010, 10:39:29 PM »
Instead of circumcision, why didn't god just make Adam already circumcised?

Omnipotent my ass!
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Offline tbright

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #135 on: October 27, 2010, 10:48:09 PM »
Quote
Also, the one that got me was the ritual of circumcision to be performed on the 8th day as commanded by God. That particular procedure has been proven to be best performed on the 8th day as a child's ability to clot blood are actually the highest is his whole life. Abraham couldn't have known that.
Got any links to scientific medical sites for that?

I've provided one before. It was from Johns Hopkins, so I doubt you'll be able to disprove it. The old forum is down, so I'm unable to pull it from an old post at this time. I'll keep checking though.

Offline Emily

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #136 on: October 27, 2010, 10:49:58 PM »
The old forum is down, so I'm unable to pull it from an old post at this time. I'll keep checking though.

the old forum is here;

www.whywontgodhealamputees.com/forum/index.php

It doesn't seem to be down. What was your username? what was the thread it was in?
« Last Edit: October 27, 2010, 10:54:11 PM by Emily »
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Offline tbright

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #137 on: October 27, 2010, 10:58:36 PM »
The old forum is down, so I'm unable to pull it from an old post at this time. I'll keep checking though.

the old forum is here;

www.whywontgodhealamputees.com/forum/index.php

It doesn't seem to be down. What was your username? what was the thread it was in?

I got it. Thanks. It kept saying that the site was busy, so I thought it was down.

I don't know how to refer to the site, so I'm just copying it word-for-word. And it was from Merck, not Johns Hopkins.

Vitamin K:

Prevention


"Phytonadione 0.5 to 1 mg IM (or 0.3 mg/kg for preterm infants) is recommended for all neonates within 6 h of birth to reduce the incidence of intracranial hemorrhage due to birth trauma, and classic hemorrhagic disease of the newborn (increased bleeding risks 1 to 7 days after birth). It is also used prophylactically before surgery. Some clinicians recommend that pregnant women taking anticonvulsants receive phytonadione 10 mg po once/day for the 1 mo or 20 mg po once/day for the 2 wk before delivery. The low vitamin K1 content in breast milk can be increased by increasing maternal dietary intake of phylloquinone to 5 mg/day."

From Merck Manuals Online Medical Library. Link: http://www.merck.com/mmpe/print/sec01/ch004/ch004m.html

With a child who spent 10 days in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, I am quite familiar with this very common issue and many others. The birthing process is quite a miracle.

Offline tbright

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #138 on: October 27, 2010, 11:03:04 PM »
Quote
I just don't get it.  It's completely moronic.  All of it.  Circumcision is genital mutilation and it should be a criminal offense to perform it to children who have no say in it at all.  If someone is willing to have it done to them later in life, then fine, let them choose it themselves.  But doing it to a defenseless child is an abomination.

So why is Johns Hopkins recommending it as it has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS?

http://www.jhsph.edu/publichealthnews/articles/2006/gray_circumcision.html

Offline Emily

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #139 on: October 27, 2010, 11:09:06 PM »
The reason I ask tbright is because if it was on the old forum old forum members probably commented on your post. I'd just like to see how they attempted to disprove it, because I am sure they tried too.

If the forum is available to you you can go to the thread on the old forum and copy/paste the link to the thread.
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Offline ParkingPlaces

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #140 on: October 27, 2010, 11:28:59 PM »
Quote
I just don't get it.  It's completely moronic.  All of it.  Circumcision is genital mutilation and it should be a criminal offense to perform it to children who have no say in it at all.  If someone is willing to have it done to them later in life, then fine, let them choose it themselves.  But doing it to a defenseless child is an abomination.

So why is Johns Hopkins recommending it as it has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS?

http://www.jhsph.edu/publichealthnews/articles/2006/gray_circumcision.html

That it happens to help lower the chance of contracting that specific disease, which a)evolved thousands of years after circumcisions were first performed and b) is normally contracted only by doing things the church considers a sin, makes your concern on this particular subject kind of whimpy.

Uncircumcised men have a more sensitive penis, and apparently enjoy sex more. I wouldn't know. But you wouldn't want me to use that as a reason not to do it because apparently enjoying sex is something we're not supposed to do anyway.

edit: fixed spelling
« Last Edit: October 28, 2010, 12:13:45 AM by ParkingPlaces »
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Offline JeffPT

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #141 on: October 28, 2010, 12:07:18 AM »
Quote
I just don't get it.  It's completely moronic.  All of it.  Circumcision is genital mutilation and it should be a criminal offense to perform it to children who have no say in it at all.  If someone is willing to have it done to them later in life, then fine, let them choose it themselves.  But doing it to a defenseless child is an abomination.

So why is Johns Hopkins recommending it as it has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS?

http://www.jhsph.edu/publichealthnews/articles/2006/gray_circumcision.html

So does condom use.  And while the Johns Hopkins study says circumcision is 48% effective, condom use has been shown to be around 87% effective in slowing the spread of HIV.  And it's a lot fucking safer than circumcision. If, as you seem to be saying here, God was telling us to circumcise in order to prevent HIV and AIDS (as if he was looking out for our best interests), why do we not hear a single mention of condom use (a vastly superior method of HIV prevention) from the omniscient god of the bible who obviously would know what condoms were and how to use them?  Or better yet, why doesn't your God just get rid of fucking AIDS in the first place? 

What do the catholics have to say about condom use?  hmm. Let's see here...

From: Family Values Versus Safe Sex, December 1, 2003. 
Quote
The Catholic Church has repeatedly criticized programs promoting condoms as a totally effective and sufficient means of AIDS prevention. The different Bishops’ Conferences all over the world have expressed their concern regarding this problem. The Catholic Bishops of South Africa, Botswana and Swaziland categorically “regard the widespread and indiscriminate promotion of condoms as an immoral and misguided weapon in our battle against HIV/AIDS for the following reasons. * The use of condoms goes against human dignity. * Condoms change the beautiful act of love into a selfish search for pleasure – while rejecting responsibility.

You know, cutting a hole in the esophagus and inserting a direct food line to the surface of the skin is a great way to bypass the trachea, and thus stop people from choking, but people don't do it because it's just easier to encourage people to chew more. Surgical procedures are about risk vs reward.  With circumcision, the risks far outweigh the rewards.  It's not even close.  Do you really think the rewards of genital mutilation outweigh the mountainous list of complications you can have from circumcisions?  Not even close.  It's still incredibly stupid.  The worst part, however, is thinking that an all powerful sky man gets something special out of humans removing a piece of their genitals in His honor.  If you could only see how stupid that thought is.     

Whenever events that are purported to occur in our best interest are as numerous as the events that will just as soon kill us, then intent is hard, if not impossible to assert. NDT

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #142 on: October 28, 2010, 05:26:15 AM »
The fact that I was living on death row - in sin meant that the only way out of it for me was for someone else from myself to do something to help set me free.  I could not do it myself. I cannot will myself to be alive or will myself out of prison. IF I am dead in sin then I am dead.  If the governor of the prison or God in this case determines for whatever reason to give me faith or to die on a cross - it has nothing to do with me. I cannot will him to do it - I cannot will him not to do it. I was never asked if I wanted Jesus to die on the cross. I was never asked if I wanted faith. This is why I say choice is irrelevent and why I say that every other form of discrimination is irrelevent - race, birth, sex, sexual orientation, religion, social position, social wealth, profession, colour, intelliegence, etc.  I did not choose God - I could not choose God. I was dead in sin.

If you suffer in eternity it is absolutely your choice and your own responsibility. You reject God - well I call that sin - but that is your choice. We have all sinned - no one is innocent (including children, the handicapped, foetuses, intellectually challenged, etc) If this is the starting point - then choice becomes irrelevent. At that point - if God is merciful to any and give grace and faith - no one can say that they deserved it. No one can say that they earnt it. He does not have to give any mercy. He does thankfully.  But he does not have to - and if we expect that he should then we are practising "guilt manipulation".  No governor has to grant a pardon to any prisoner. If a governor does not grant freedom - he is not evil.  It is the prisoner who broke the law. It is the prisoner who condemned himself. TO blame the governor only demonstrates that the person thinks that they did not do anything to deserve their punishment. (Now I grant that is a more interesting question but it is a different issue)

And you STILL are not addressing my point - indeed, your response is STILL carrying the same contradictions.

"...the only way out of it for me was for someone else from myself to do something to help set me free.  I could not do it myself..." 
"God in this case determines for whatever reason to give me faith "
"I did not choose God - I could not choose God. I was dead in sin."

To summarise: it was impossible for you to repent/find god/stop sinning on your own.  It required god to intervene and give you belief.

But THEN you try to say:

"You reject God - well I call that sin - but that is your choice"

Sorry, but this directly contradicts what you said before!!!

"You can't choose god" you say, but also "you will be damned because you did not choose god".

I'll say it again slowly:

If we cannot believe in and accept god without god FIRST doing something to MAKE us believe.....
Then if god does NOT take that first action, we will NEVER believe - and so NEVER be saved.....
Then it is therefore down to god's choices - and god's alone - whether we become saved.

Seriously - do you not see the huge contradiction in what you are saying?
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #143 on: October 28, 2010, 05:39:34 AM »
Now that doesn't mean I always succeeded in living the perfect Christian life, but the Gospel doesn't fix your sinful nature, it covers it.  The proof of one's faith should be seen in how they live their life, but not condemned for every mistake. 

See, that's my point (presuming you believe in an omniscient, aomnipresent, all-seeing god).

If Jesus were constaly manifest to you - perhaps only that YOU could see him, but otherwise as real and "there" as any human being.  Constantly standing a couple feet ahead of you, watching you all the time.....would you sin?  COULD you sin?  Not in a "my free will is overridden" way, but just something you would not do (like if your mother was watching you).

If god is everywhere, sees everything, how is that any different?  How do you find yourself able to sin in the first place, if you truly believe your god exists?
Just because you've always done it that way doesn't mean it's not incredibly stupid.
Why is it so hard for believers to answer a direct question?

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Re: Do they really believe?
« Reply #144 on: October 28, 2010, 08:37:18 AM »
So why is Johns Hopkins recommending it as it has been shown to reduce the risk of HIV/AIDS?

This makes me nutty when people tout this completely out of context.  You have to understand that HIV is not a condition people randomly "catch".  It only reduces the risk of HIV under very specific circumstances - if you are porking someone who is HIV positive without a condom. If you tend to not pork people with HIV or if you tend to use a condom when porking, circumcision does nothing for you.  Circumcision is not like a vaccine or a magical talisman that keeps away the AIDS.

And just so you are clear, circumcision in the jewish tradition was never meant to promote a healthy penis.  It was a blood and flesh sacrifice to a god as a symbol of people's loyalty to that god.  See Exodus 4:24-25

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