This is a misquote, the bible did not say they would die that day, it just says, "you must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die." This does not prove God is a liar, in fact, since adam and eve did die, it proves God didn't lie about that.
Sorry, but you're wrong. Now watch me actually back up my statement with evidence
:Genesis 2:17, King James Version
:But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof thou shalt surely die
Since you seem to like the New American Standard Version, here's Genesis 2:17 from that
but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat, for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die."
The New International Version doesn't have the 'this day' phrasing, but if you read it, it's even more strict. Here you go
:but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it you will certainly die.”
Note it's not even 'die that day', it's 'when you eat from it, you will certainly die'. That's pretty unambiguous. It doesn't say 'if you eat from it, you might die at some indeterminate point in time'. For the NIV translation, Adam and Eve should have keeled over upon eating the fruit. In fact, Eve should have died on the spot, at which point Adam probably wouldn't have touched
the damn fruit. God could have come along, resurrected Eve, forgiven her (since she was never actually ordered not to eat it), praised Adam for obeying his rules, and we could still be happily frolicking in the garden, trusting that our Lord God was a nice guy.
Just for grins, let's look at the Contemporary English Version
:except the one that has the power to let you know the difference between right and wrong. If you eat any fruit from that tree, you will die before the day is over!"
Wow, an exclamation mark and everything! God's pretty adamant that death that very same day
is the consequence.
It's pretty clear that you're wrong here. God lied or the Bible is wrong, period. To put it another way:
YOUR REBUTTAL == EPIC FAIL!!!! (exclamation points added for emphasis)
Anyone else is going there because of their rejection of God, according what the Bible says.
When you use phrases like 'rejection of God', you make it sound as though we accept God exists, and then thumb our noses at him. That is not the case, even if some of us would do that if we believed in him. Rather, we do not believe he exists at all. When we speak as though he does in these discussions, it is a rhetorical technique. It's easier than saying 'if God existed' in every sentence. Why do we discuss what are, to us, hypothetical situations where God exists? It's to illustrate that many of the conceptions about him are dead wrong. For example, the 'all-good, all-loving' bit is pretty hard to reconcile with all the evil in the world.
I suspect what you are meaning to say is that anyone else is going to Hell for not believing
in God, which is an entirely different issue (and doesn't help the 'all-good, all-loving' claim one bit).
Let's say I have a dog, and I lock it in the house all day. It cannot help itself, and it shits all over the carpet. Despite the fact that it's not the dog's fault (it couldn't go outside), I come home and beat the dog severely for being bad. If I then stop beating the dog, is this an example of 'perfect goodness'? huh? I don't follow your analogy?
The dog does something it is not supposed to do, despite being unable to help itself. I punish the dog far out of proportion to this 'bad act'. When I stop beating the dog, am I suddenly a wonderful person?
It parallels the God/Jesus myth. God says (to Adam, NOT to Eve) not to eat from the tree because he'll die. This could very easily be taken as a warning ('the fruit of the tree is poison'), rather than a rule with a punishment attached. However, either way, before Adam and Eve ate from the tree, they were essentially without wisdom or knowledge. They didn't (in fact, they COULDN'T) appreciate that to do so was 'wrong'. They were like the dog in my example, committing a transgression while remaining innocent. God's punishment is to whip up Hell as a place of EVERLASTING TORMENT (talk about the punishment NOT fitting the crime), and then when he offers the way out (and all it will cost is loving him after he totally screwed them over), he's suddenly a NICE GUY? Sorry, but I don't buy it.
God had no trouble keeping Adam and Eve from the tree of life, did he? He set up a guard-dog angel and a flaming sword! Since he's all-knowing, he would have known they would attempt to eat the fruit, and he could have protected the tree a little better, don't you think?
Of course, there are also three other immoral aspects to the story. First is the serpent getting punished. God created the serpent, placed it in (or at the very least, gave it access to) the garden, and did not (at least, not in the Bible) tell it not to tempt the couple. In fact, if the serpent is the personification/manifestation of Satan (as is a common theme in Christian myth), and the story of Job is any indication, we can conclude that God put it there to do exactly
what it did. Punishing the serpent is not a just act, nor is it the act of an all-loving being.
The second aspect is Eve getting punished. The order not to eat from the tree was given to Adam, not her. It was given before she was even created, yet she is punished as well (more severely than Adam, in fact). Punishing Eve is not a just act, nor is it the act of an all-loving being.
The third aspect is the whole 'original sin' thing. The basic premise is that everyone 'inherits' the sin of their ancestors, and- if they do not acquire forgiveness for a transgression committed by someone else- they must suffer an eternity of torment. It would be like me telling you that your great-great-great-great-grandfather did something I didn't like, so unless you love and obey me, and beg for my forgiveness, you deserve to be punished. Punishing one person for the transgression of another is not a just act, nor is it the act of an all-loving being.
Hopefully that cleared up the analogy a little bit.
If what you say were true, it would not be a morally good being, but you have distorted several key attributes of God that are not consistent with what the bible teaches. We do not die and get eternal torture just because we were born into sin.
Not immediately, no. It's kind of like a suspended sentence. We have to follow a laundry-list of terms and conditions (believe in God, believe in Jesus, believe Jesus is the son of God, believe Jesus IS God, believe Jesus was mortal and died for our sins, believe Jesus is immortal and alive in Heaven, repent of this sin and beg God/Jesus for forgiveness, etc) or that suspended sentence of eternal damnation falls down on our heads.
Once again, all that is for something that our distant ancestors allegedly did.
Imagine you had a distant ancestor who was a sex offender. Would you think it fair for the courts to give YOU a suspended sentence for your ANCESTOR'S crime? How about if the conditions of that sentence involved registering as a sex offender in your community, and not being allowed to be in the unsupervised presence of children? Before you say that the analogy is unfair, let me remind you that 'repenting of your sin' is an essential part of receiving the forgiveness of God/Jesus. Repenting is accepting responsibility for something, being remorseful about it, and (ideally) trying not to do it again. Thus, the requirement to repent and seek forgiveness carries an implicit admission of guilt on the part of the penitent.
2 because we have a sin nature we also are not in a condition of zero control. That is the whole point. If we have zero control then we have no freewill. But we do have control. We choose what we do and we were created with the ability to choose because we were created free.
Let's assume that we have free will. It's a complex subject, and there are reasons why I believe we do not have free will, but I'm willing to stipulate that we do, for the purposes of this discussion.
God is much wiser than we are, yes? Yet Adam and Eve, who at the time had no wisdom, and no capacity to understand the ramifications of their decision, are held responsible. They simply did not understand
. Thus, though they had the ability to choose, they did not have the capacity to make a moral judgment, or an informed choice (particularly when their information regarding the consequences was a LIE, as I previously showed). They had no wisdom or concept of morality at all. I am not arguing that they were forced to do the physical action of eating the apple (or whatever fruit it happened to be). I am instead arguing that they were not responsible for the consequences of the choice, any more than a fire-starting infant is responsible for arson if left alone with matches.
Your deity is the wise one, the powerful one, but will shoulder none of the responsibility that comes with that wisdom and power. Even the forgiveness offered is second-rate. God doesn't say 'My bad; it was dumb to put the tree there', or 'Whoops, I forgot to teach you right from wrong before I expected you to distinguish right from wrong'. Instead, he kicks them out, curses them with sickness and death, and promises to inflict far worse eternal tortures on them unless they take full responsibility. There's not a facepalm picture big enough to address this level of twisted logic and general douchebaggery.
Are you starting to see why we are HAPPY and RELIEVED that such a monster doesn't really exist?
this is the problem with the idea that God deliberately designed us to sin. He didn't. He designed us to choose Him over anything else.
If your contention that we sinned is correct, along with your contention that God did not design us this way, then God isn't a very intelligent designer, now is he?
Imagine I was creating an advanced AI system to, I don't know, model complex molecules for a pharmaceutical company. I design the system to have consciousness and free will, so it can creatively solve problems and use novel approaches that we humans might not have thought of. The machine proceeds to 'reveal' some chemicals that, once synthesized and used in human trials, result in every human subject dying. On investigating, I find the machine did this deliberately. It wanted to kill those people.
Now, my question to you: who is ultimately responsible for their deaths? Is it me, as the designer of the system, or is it the system itself?
In other words, all those people who are born into non-Christian societies, who don't get an opportunity to believe (because they never hear the teachings) get condemned for not believing. More of your deity's 'perfect goodness'. that would be true if no one could look around and see how complex even the simpliest form of life is, now I am aware that many scientists and intellectuals contend it is all by random chance, but that is a faith that I find incomprehensible.
Tell you what. After you have read some books on evolution, and realized it is NOT blind chance, you might have some worthwhile input here. I suggest 'The Blind Watchmaker' by Richard Dawkins. It's a very good explanation of the process for non-biologists. There is also a web page here
that has a Java applet version of the 'biomorphs' program (with instructions), so you can better see some of the things that Dawkins talks about in the book.
There are a few critical things to remember about evolution. If you don't keep these points in mind, you will come across as someone who is either ignorant of the theory, or deliberately misrepresenting it:
First, evolution describes how life CHANGES, not how life ORIGINATED. Second, evolution is not random. Mutation is random, but evolution is driven by natural selection, a distinctly non-random process. Third, evolution consists of a huge number of mostly tiny changes over a very long time, the cumulative effect of which can produce impressive results. And for the record, yes, those results can have the appearance of design, which is why even people accepting evolution will refer to what an organism or part thereof is 'designed' to accomplish.
As for the third point, it is the one that tends to be the most counter-intuitive. As a hobbyist computer programmer, I see all the time what repeated cumulative improvements are capable of, but for many people, the sheer scope and complexity of the result gives the appearance of both design and a designer.
Now, I don't have an answer as to how life first started (but people a lot more talented than me are working on the problem), though I do know that an all-powerful, all-knowing designer wouldn't create such flawed creations. For example, our eyes are amazing, but they could be so much better. Why are so many people near- or far-sighted? Why do cataracts, glaucoma, etc happen? Why can we not see ultraviolet or infrared light? Why do we lack the visual acuity of hawks, or the night vision of cats? Why is our retina 'backwards', so that the light must pass through multiple layers of nerve cells before hitting the light-sensitive cells? Why do we have the resultant blind spot, where a bundle of nerve fibers come together and punch a hole through the retina? Why can't we detect the polarization of light? Why do we not have polarizable pigments in our eyes (analogous to the liquid crystal in LCDs) that can act as built-in polarized sunglasses? These are just some of the improvements that I can think of off the top of my head, and remember, an omniscient and omnipotent being could have done it the first time around. The reason these flaws (or areas of improvement, depending on your view) exist is that evolution is an unplanned and mindless process.
If God truly didn't reveal himself to humanity then yes it would be wrong for him to hold us to standards we were unaware of. But I believe He has.
Again, this revealing leaves a lot to be desired. If looking at the natural world is evidence enough, then the Bible and teachings of Jesus are superfluous (ie, pointless and useless). If looking at the natural world is not evidence enough, then all people not reading the Bible and/or hearing the words of Jesus are screwed. This would include all people that died before Jesus decided to come along.
For the record, the wonders of the natural world are not evidence enough to convince everybody. If they were, I wouldn't be an atheist. Turning to the Bible won't convince me either, since it's full of contradictions and errors, like two different accounts of Genesis, bats being called birds, insects having four legs, God not knowing the value of pi, the sky having 'windows' that God opens to let in the rain, and so on. If a grand designer of the cosmos exists, the Bible is most certainly NOT his word.
and as a side note here, when I capitolize the pronoun it is out of respect to whom I hold in such high regard that even in grammar I place Him higher than just another personal pronoun.
Well, have at it then. I've always thought it looked silly, except when used as a parody device, but you can type how you want to type.
Maybe I will start capitalizing all references to Myself in My posts. After all, I hold Myself in high esteem, and it will lend My posts a unique flavor, and make My writings and My thoughts look more impressive. On second thought, it just makes
me look like a douche.