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Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #348 on: April 05, 2012, 11:30:47 PM »
Hi 12 Monkeys,

Please explain about us Indians in North America,if you will. I bet all you can come up with is regurgitations from history books,written by the victors. To most Americans Gen. Custer is a war hero,to me he is a murderer.again history is written by the victors.
You’re trying to equate an event that a few people were part of, most people only heard about through a limited source, and does not define us as a nation to an event that thousands of people were part of, had many sources of information and defined them as a people, a religion and as a nation. Please explain. Also, please take into account the Jewish concept of truth and covenant in your explanation.

Your belief that only ancient hebrews tell the truth and Islam,and other religions are false is laughable
I understand what you’re saying. To an atheist the idea that any of them are the truth is laughable. Since none of them are true it’s only hubris for a person to say that any one of them is true.
As I have stated HISTORY books are written by the victorious....It does NOT make it truth or FACT in any way.....Custer is an American hero,,,unless of course you are an Indian
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Offline caveat_imperator

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #349 on: April 06, 2012, 02:12:15 PM »
Even with history books, we still have silly tales like George Washington and his cherry tree.
And we have people today like david barton making up lies and trying to pass it off as history.

In fact, he has a book coming out this month about Thomas Jefferson.
http://freethoughtblogs.com/rodda/2012/04/02/starting-to-debunk-david-bartons-new-book-the-jefferson-lies/
You can't prove a negative of an existence postulate.

Offline SimpleCaveman

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #350 on: April 07, 2012, 11:01:54 AM »
Brakemen,

I have to say that you are a very patient man. Thank you for your explanation.

Screwtape made the comment that the people of the ancient mid east at the time of the supposed Exodus had few informational sources in which to contrast against the claims of their local priests. You then claimed that this was contradicting the Oral Tradition and the written documents of the era, implying that the Biblical histories would have been kept accurate by those. I replied that the modern examples of religious historical rewrites that show that the Oral Tradition and writings that are very clear and evident today are not sufficient to keep religious stories accurate, and that Screwtape was very correct in that local churches can mislead their flock easily into believing stories that are historically and factually untrue.
Unfortunately, the analogy is not the same. A comparison of the two would show that. It’s similar to what 12 Monkeys is trying to do, but even more extreme. Joseph Smith got his information allegedly through a source that only he saw (and a couple of others later). He was the source of all information. This is being compared to something that thousands of people experienced. It defined them as a people. The Joseph Smith story is not on the same scale at all. Maybe at a general abstract level it is and that’s where the hand waving comes in. Once we get to the specifics it falls apart.

Offline SimpleCaveman

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #351 on: April 07, 2012, 11:17:57 AM »
Hi screwtape,

I've noticed that too.  It seems to happen if you have a nested quote anywhere in your post after the footnote.
Thanks.

You are a real help. 
You’re welcome. :)

I assumed some civilizations had libraries, just not the iron age jooz.  They were barely a civilization, afterall.  The ONLY thing they gave to modern culture is monotheism. No math.  No science.  No architecture. No art.  If you want to count the bible as literature, okay, fine, but understand that is a function of the popularity of their religion.  The greeks added nearly as much in the field of literature and their religion has been defunct for nigh 2000 years.  So if reformed judaism (aka xianity) had not caught on, no one would be reading the torah and regarding it as great lit other than jews.
I’m wondering what do you picture things were like back then? The Hebrews were not an isolated group. In fact, Palestine was in the middle of things all the time. Everyone wanted to conquer them. They were vassals of some sort for most of their history. As the conquered, it’s no wonder they didn’t do as much as the conquerors. But they did do some things such as, as you mentioned, monotheism and Old Testament. (By the way, I’d be interested in the explanation of where they came up with monotheism.) The Temple of Solomon would be another.

However, that’s a distraction from the main point. The people of that region, even 2500 BC, were much more literate than you give them credit for. The Jews had people who were able to read and write. The Bible references these and documents that were ancient to them. And again, we can’t discount oral tradition. The analogy of the telephone game is highly inaccurate.

Had there been a moses and had events occurred as written in the OT, then sure, he probably would have been literate.  But that puts the cart before the horse in a lot of ways, doesn't it? 
  • You treat the evidence of the Bible differently than other books because you don’t believe in God.
  • You denigrate the Hebrew people because they did believe in God.
  • You say there was a big conspiracy that took place that convinced thousands of people that their fathers experienced something that they didn’t really experience because the Hebrew people’s history can’t be true (see above).
  • Therefore you have to assume there was no Moses in order to not give any credence to their history.
I’m not sure there’s even a horse with that cart.

First, they thought it was less reliable to write it down.  The primitive rubes!  They had no idea just how faulty human memory is.  Then, when they got around to writing it down, it was 200 years after jesus H.  Oh man.
That is a good point. It’s clearly a culture that is entirely different from ours. And that’s all cultures of that time, not just the Hebrew culture. They put a very strong focus on the spoken word and human memory. Do you think they would have done that if their experience didn’t support it? You look at them as “primitive rubes” with “faulty memory” because they lived 4000 years ago, were Jewish and believed in God. How prejudiced is that?

Human memory, when exercised, is very powerful. The problem today is that we don’t exercise it. People, even today, memorize very large portions of text. Think of actors doing one-man plays. And back then they purposefully wrote it in such a way as to make it easier to memorize. C’mon screwtape, you searched a couple of Wikipedia articles, but you didn’t do any real research into these questions. I figured if you found your own sources, you would ensure they were objective and not slanted one way or another. Let me start you off with an article from the Catholic Encyclopedia of 1911. Clearly not secular, but gives a good review and discussion of the topic. There’s also Prof. John Bright’s book “A History of Israel”, which looks at the history from a scientific and archeological perspective.

bold mine.  So this whole business about Moses writing the Torah is ambiguous and a relatively late invention. 
You should look deeper than just Wikipedia. Even that article refers to other views. Did you dig into them? It’s really not a late invention. The Mosaic authorship was referred to both in the Old and New Testament.

What is a good catholic like you arguing over jewish traditions for? 
Because as a good Catholic I understand that our faith and traditions are a continuation of the Jewish faith and traditions. God’s plan of salvation started with Adam and culminated with Jesus Christ who was a very devout Jew.

Offline SimpleCaveman

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #352 on: April 07, 2012, 11:24:01 AM »
Hi kaziglu bey,

Just one? Couldn't do it sorry, especially since I read through and replied to everything before I read this last part :P I think it is suffice to say that there are a few things (the ones I suspect that you think we are re-hashing) that I just simply disagree with you about, and you with me, and I am not sure that such a point will be reconciled, so we should each assume that the opponent holds that position.
You’re completely correct. I apologize for not putting that part at the beginning of the post. It would have saved you a lot of time and hassle.

I’m sure you’re right that some of these points won’t be reconciled. I recognize that from the beginning and that’s not my issue with re-hashing sub-topics. Whether we agree or not though, the conversation can move to a deeper level by addressing all the points of each side, rather than re-stating the same points over and over. We’re doing this on some sub-topics, but on others we’re not. My guess is that it’s for two reasons: one is that there was such a big gap and we have to do extra work to “catch up” and the other is that we have so many sub-topics going on in our conversation that, again, it’s extra work to keep things straight. If all this back and forth is only a slam at each other, like it is with other posters, then the extra work is silly and wasted. All the work I do for a single post (and for some posts I do quite a bit of research and thinking so that I am confident what I post is accurate) is silly and wasted.

However, if the conversation is one of sharing our thoughts, experiences and feelings in order to work towards a mutual understanding of where we agree and disagree, even if not complete mutual agreement, then the extra work is required.

<soapbox>
What I call “shotgun posts” made by others do not improve our world or make us better people. These are two kinds of posts, drive-by posts where someone throws something in without knowing the context and then you don’t see them again unless someone fires back. The other “shotgun posts” are the ones with topics, attacks and snide remarks all over the place like the spray of a shotgun. The purpose of each is to disrupt and distract. Their ego is so great that they think they are the only ones with the answers and they don’t listen to anyone else unless that person agrees with them. I don’t want to post like that or respond to them.
</soapbox>

Anyway, I’m done with the soapbox. Thank you for your patience. Let me explain what I mean by the “off-topic” comments. One example is we were talking about how to read the Bible in light of Jesus Christ. (Which, by the way, was already off-topic. :)) You asked “But the participants in the OT did not have Jesus, why shouldn't we read it without Jesus?” I responded with two reasons why. Instead of addressing the reasons and continuing with “how to read the Bible in light of Christ”, I see the response as taking another direction, that is “there would have been no need of a savior if God hadn’t done all the things he did.”

So yes, you are correct. “Jesus, Jewish people or God” are not off-topic in a conversation about Christianity. However, Christianity is a huge topic and our conversations, to be productive, have to be, and have been, much more focused. We can’t come to a mutual understanding of agreements and disagreements about, for example, “how to read the Bible in the light of Christ,” if we don’t stick to “how to read the Bible in the light of Christ.”

With that said, if I can pick the topic of our conversation going forward, then I’d like to stay with that. In fact, I’m going to stop this thread and start a new one. It’s now Holy Saturday and Judas has already done his thing. Tonight begins Easter when Jesus rose from the dead and changed the world forever. Let’s move from the one to the other.

Besides the poetic reason :), here’s the practical reason. When people read the OT parts you keep referring to, they have questions. Everyone does not just atheists. Atheists, or those inclined to atheism, read it and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They rebel (just like Judas) and say, “I am so much better than this God. If this is what he is, then I want nothing to do with him.” And God let’s them have their will.

Theists read these parts and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They submit and say, “You are so much greater than me, God. I don’t understand what this is. Show me more of who you are, so that I can understand.” And God responds with Jesus Christ. He’s the answer to our question and without him God has no answer. It is critical to the understanding of God, the Bible, the world and ourselves to know Jesus Christ. We can explore this in the next thread.

I won’t start the thread today. I’m already late for other things I have to do, like mow the lawn – darn weather :). But I will in the next couple of days. I also will only be spending at most an hour a night on it. That may mean delays, but if I limit myself to that then I can probably post even when things get busy. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing.

Thank you, kaziglu bey, for these conversations. I wish we could be doing this over beers, but we make the best.

Offline SimpleCaveman

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #353 on: April 07, 2012, 11:24:51 AM »
Hi 12 Monkeys,

SC To the last point Velkyn made....we have libraries dating back 12 to 15 thousand years....they are the stories our totem poles have told over all those generations.  Each family has a history lesson in the totems standing in front of their houses. Then you barbarians came along and destroyed it as devil worship

 12,000 plus years and 90% of the population gone by 1862,and you call us heathens
I don’t know what I can say. I agree that our history in the United States has many tragedies and how we treated Native Americans is one of them. I grew up in the middle of a Potawatomi reservation and many of my friends were Potawatomi’s (and a couple of “non-friends”, too.) I understand that there is a great loss in our nation and world. I am deeply sorry for the evil that has been done to your people.

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #354 on: April 07, 2012, 05:01:53 PM »
A sidetrack
I understand what you’re saying. To an atheist the idea that any of them are the truth is laughable. Since none of them are true it’s only hubris for a person to say that any one of them is true.
As I have stated HISTORY books are written by the victorious....It does NOT make it truth or FACT in any way.....Custer is an American hero,,,unless of course you are an Indian
[/quote]
The thing here is that The American Native lived in a superstitious state that demanded war and aggression. To fight bravely was the single goal of the male. The problem was that, in the invaders, the Plains tribes met a enemy tribe more powerful than themselves.

I have not the slightest doubt that had the tribes had the weapons that the invaders had, they too would have used them in conquest.

I give you this quote
Quote
Hoig (1993, 25) also emphasizes that a strong warrior “ethic permitted the killing of enemies, the capturing of slaves, the stealing of horses from other tribes, and the taking of scalps as trophies of war.  [In addition to gains in prestige, these deeds were  … extolled as virtues by war societies, by rituals of personal endurance such as the tortuous sun dance, and by feast-dances that celebrated exploits of warriorship.  The concept of war for the Plains Indians was interrelated with religion.”  One aspect of these religious beliefs was the importance placed on a warrior’s medicine bundle, a “wrapper containing a set of sacred objects indicated by the spirit” (Lowie 1954: 157).  The “spirit” was a supernatural being seen in a vision that the individual purposely sought through isolation, self-mutilation, fasting, and other practices.  Medicine bundles apparently contained a pipe, tobacco, paints, and perhaps many other items, but the precise combination of items was proprietary, as it was believed to provide the bundle owner with power.  Indeed, “Among Plains Indians no medicine was more sought by ambitious young men than war medicine. 
from "Intertribal Conflict on the Great Plains:Cultural Versus Economic Explanations, or is There Really a Difference?" by Bruce L. Benson, DeVoe Moore Distinguished Research Professor, Department of Economics, Florida State University 32306 available at http://www.isnie.org/ISNIE06/Papers06/08.3/benson.doc (MSWord or MSWord Reader required.) /sidetrack.[/i]

Carry on.
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Offline screwtape

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #355 on: April 07, 2012, 06:21:59 PM »
I’m wondering what do you picture things were like back then?

I'm not sure how to answer that if it was not meant rhetorically.

Everyone wanted to conquer them.

I'm not sure that is exactly the right way to put it.  They were wimps sandwiched between superpowers, constantly getting squished by one or another of them.  At least that last part we seem to agree on.

By the way, I’d be interested in the explanation of where they came up with monotheism.

It was how they saved face and maintained some kind of... self esteem after the Assyrians trounced them.  The jews believed in a whole pantheon of gods - the elohim[1].  yhwh was one of them.  Baal another.  El another.  Asherah another[2].  When the Assyrians soundly defeated them and burned to the ground the home of yhwh, it was not just a military defeat, but also their god Marduk demonstrating power over the puny yhwh.  You would think the hebrews would, you know, realize yhwh wasn't looking out for them.  But that was too terrible a conclusion to accept.  So instead they doubled down on denial.  They cooked up this story that they must have been punished by yhwh for idolatry [ed -yeah, idolatry, that's the ticket].  It also meant that marduk was a mere puppet to yhwh.  So, in a game of theological one-upsmanship, they declared their god not just the most powerful, but the only.

They solidified their idea of a singular god while in babylonian exile.  Ezra came back with a "new" torah.

There is a book entitled "The Evolution of God" by Robert Wright.  It presents a highly plausible explanation of how the human animal went from spiritism and animism to polytheism to monotheism.  He bends over backward to try to accommodate the possibility of gods because we seem to be making moral progress.  Apart from that nonsense, it was excellent.

The Temple of Solomon would be another.

Are you sure?
Quote
there is no direct archaeological evidence for the existence of Solomon's Temple, and no mentions of it, in the surviving contemporary extra-biblical literature.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solomon%27s_Temple

If it did exist and the OT is accurate, they didn't build it.  They had to import the skills
Quote
King Solomon requested the aid of King Hiram of Tyre to provide both the quality materials and skilled craftsmen.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solomon%27s_Temple#History

Pretty pathetic they couldn't even build yhwh's house themselves.  Kind of like the US having to contract out to India for IT.

The people of that region, even 2500 BC, were much more literate than you give them credit for.

How literate were they?  How literate am I giving them credit for?  I'm not sure I said one way or the other.

The Jews had people who were able to read and write.

I never said otherwise.

And again, we can’t discount oral tradition.

Why not?  If not, what weight should it be given?  Should we call it "inerrant"?  Is that really reasonable?

You treat the evidence of the Bible differently than other books because you don’t believe in God.

How do I treat other books?  What other books are you talking about? 

I treat the bible as I do because it sounds like stories that contain gods you and I both agree do not exist.  I have found no reason to treat the bible as anything other than ancient jewish mythology.

You denigrate the Hebrew people because they did believe in God.

I am not sure I denigrate them any more than I would denigrate, say, the Hittites or any other group of primitives who contributed almost nothing of value to the world.

You say there was a big conspiracy that took place that convinced thousands of people that their fathers experienced something that they didn’t really experience because the Hebrew people’s history can’t be true (see above).

I said what, now?  A "big conspiracy", did you say?

And are you now claiming that the OT is literally true? 

Therefore you have to assume there was no Moses in order to not give any credence to their history.

Ah, no.  I do not think there was a Moses as reported in the bible, because that would be absurd.  There may have been a guy named moses who did something significant around whom many stories arose and to whom later generations attributed all sorts of things.  And I do not need to believe that in order to dismiss the bible as history.  We have history to do that. 

You know, archaeologists used to run around the desert with a bible in their hand trying to use it as a guide for where to dig.  They were not very successful.  Once they stopped assuming the bible was literally true, history started to make more sense.  They used to think all languages derived from hebrew because of the whole Babel story.  Once they stopped that nonsense, they were able to understand how languages actually evolved.


That is a good point. It’s clearly a culture that is entirely different from ours. And that’s all cultures of that time, not just the Hebrew culture. They put a very strong focus on the spoken word and human memory. Do you think they would have done that if their experience didn’t support it?

Who cares if their "experience" supported it?  Their experience was rooted in memory, which is horribly faulty. We know this because we have studies done with the scientific method that pretty conclusively show this to be true.  Against that, their experience amounts to absolutely nothing.

You look at them as “primitive rubes” with “faulty memory” because they lived 4000 years ago, were Jewish and believed in God.

Are you arguing they weren't primitive?  What were they then, modern? 
Are you arguing they weren't rubes?  What do you call people who believe in talking snakes, skeptics?

I really think you are out in the weeds on this one, SC.


Human memory, when exercised, is very powerful.

Not really.
http://voices.yahoo.com/how-reliable-memory-6602648.html?cat=5

Try a book titled The Invisible Gorilla.  The idea that memory is awesome is an illusion.  It is actually terrible.  So is the idea that we have amazing potential, if we only learned how to use it.  They did a study where people were talking to a guy.  As they were talking, someone walked between them carrying a door.  It separated them briefly and completely obscured their view.  They changed guys while that happened.  A minority of people even noticed.

And can you remember my first sentence of this post verbatim? 

http://www.newadvent.org/cathen/11646c.htm
http://www.thethoughtfulchristian.com/Products/0664220681/a-history-of-israel-fourth-edition.aspx

I'll take a look.

You should look deeper than just Wikipedia. Even that article refers to other views.

You mean like the ones of rabbis who stated the obvious, that it was unlikely moses wrote it? <-- the ones you glossed over?

The Mosaic authorship was referred to both in the Old and New Testament.

Yes, referred to, but not explicitly claimed and not so ardently asserted.  Who's given the short shrift to whom now?

 1. yeah, just like the name they used for god.  funny coincidence, that. 
 2. in fact, asherah was yhwh's wife at one point
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Offline kaziglu bey

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #356 on: April 07, 2012, 10:45:18 PM »
Hi kaziglu bey,

You’re completely correct.
I WIN!!!!! lol just kidding. Although, that statement, if taken out of context.... nevermind. Really tired from a long day, so I'm a little silly. 
Quote
I apologize for not putting that part at the beginning of the post. It would have saved you a lot of time and hassle.
Oh no problem at all! I'm unfortunately unemployed, so I have plenty of time on my hands. I prefer mental exercise to physical exercise anyways. I just couldn't believe that you would type all of that, and not expect me to respond. Like, yeah right.

Quote
I’m sure you’re right that some of these points won’t be reconciled. I recognize that from the beginning and that’s not my issue with re-hashing sub-topics. Whether we agree or not though, the conversation can move to a deeper level by addressing all the points of each side, rather than re-stating the same points over and over. We’re doing this on some sub-topics, but on others we’re not. My guess is that it’s for two reasons: one is that there was such a big gap and we have to do extra work to “catch up” and the other is that we have so many sub-topics going on in our conversation that, again, it’s extra work to keep things straight. If all this back and forth is only a slam at each other, like it is with other posters, then the extra work is silly and wasted. All the work I do for a single post (and for some posts I do quite a bit of research and thinking so that I am confident what I post is accurate) is silly and wasted.

However, if the conversation is one of sharing our thoughts, experiences and feelings in order to work towards a mutual understanding of where we agree and disagree, even if not complete mutual agreement, then the extra work is required.
I would say that you certainly do seem to put a lot of thought and effort into your posts. I don't think I could rightly accuse you otherwise. But, on the places where we seem to reach the most fundamental disagreements, I think that it is safe to say that, given two entirely different current worldviews, our perspectives will be different to an extent that we just will not agree.

Quote
<soapbox>
What I call “shotgun posts” made by others do not improve our world or make us better people. These are two kinds of posts, drive-by posts where someone throws something in without knowing the context and then you don’t see them again unless someone fires back. The other “shotgun posts” are the ones with topics, attacks and snide remarks all over the place like the spray of a shotgun. The purpose of each is to disrupt and distract. Their ego is so great that they think they are the only ones with the answers and they don’t listen to anyone else unless that person agrees with them. I don’t want to post like that or respond to them.
</soapbox>
I don't deny that this happens on this forum, but it seems to me at least that the theists are often the more guilty (or, perhaps sinful?) in this regard than atheists. Given what I have said about perspective though, I fully anticipate that you will disagree.

Quote
Anyway, I’m done with the soapbox. Thank you for your patience.
I have the patience of a Jedi.
Quote
Let me explain what I mean by the “off-topic” comments. One example is we were talking about how to read the Bible in light of Jesus Christ. (Which, by the way, was already off-topic. :)) You asked “But the participants in the OT did not have Jesus, why shouldn't we read it without Jesus?” I responded with two reasons why. Instead of addressing the reasons and continuing with “how to read the Bible in light of Christ”, I see the response as taking another direction, that is “there would have been no need of a savior if God hadn’t done all the things he did.”

So yes, you are correct. “Jesus, Jewish people or God” are not off-topic in a conversation about Christianity. However, Christianity is a huge topic and our conversations, to be productive, have to be, and have been, much more focused. We can’t come to a mutual understanding of agreements and disagreements about, for example, “how to read the Bible in the light of Christ,” if we don’t stick to “how to read the Bible in the light of Christ.”
Indeed, I thought that you would be discussing this. I think this is where there is a fundamental difference of perspective, and I will demonstrate what it is. You believe that the OT clearly should be interpreted in light of Jesus[1]. In other words, you accept what the Bible says, and the interpretation of it that is most familiar to you[2].  I believe that since the OT writers clearly did not know Jesus, nor were they expecting his arrival, nor were they concerned with worshiping him for fear of hell, and since many of the OT laws and regs were totally not in concordance with what Jesus taught, even though one of the things that he taught was that the OT law was still the real deal, and we can't submit questions to the Celestial Inquiry Panel to clear matters up (which would be, you know, SUPER helpful, and would have prevented thousands of years of bloodthirsty religious violence), and we can't be sure if we are supposed to love our enemies or utterly destroy them, which are two completely opposite positions, yet both are mandated by God in the Bible, who inspired the OT which we are supposed to ignore, but only sometimes, the 10 commandments are cool and all that, but the rest of it is just old Jewish stuff, lets just interpret that in the light of Jesus. DO YOU SEE HOW I AM HAVING DIFFICULTY ACCEPTING YOUR POSITION HERE!!?! LOL sorry for shouting, it's just that I think it really is such an important and essential point to address. That is just a small sample of the issues that need to be rectified before I can concede to say "Yes, let us seriously look at how the rape, ethnic cleansing, and horrific mass murders of the OT are Good and Just and Righteous in the Light of Jesus, Our Lord the Savior." I can't shut off my thought process. To paraphrase Christopher Hitchens, I could only currently do what you are asking me, " at the low price of the surrender of my critical faculties".

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With that said, if I can pick the topic of our conversation going forward, then I’d like to stay with that. In fact, I’m going to stop this thread and start a new one.
That's cool with me. Fresh start never hurts. I can kinda see this going nowhere at this point, which is kind of what I think you think too. 
Quote
It’s now Holy Saturday and Judas has already done his thing.
Sure, and every single Christian would be totally fucked if he didn't.
Quote
Tonight begins Easter when Jesus rose from the dead and changed the world forever.
Grab your firearms, its the Zombie Invasion!
Quote
Let’s move from the one to the other.
Sure.

Quote
Besides the poetic reason :), here’s the practical reason. When people read the OT parts you keep referring to, they have questions. Everyone does not just atheists. Atheists, or those inclined to atheism, read it and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They rebel (just like Judas) and say, “I am so much better than this God. If this is what he is, then I want nothing to do with him.” And God let’s them have their will.
Well, that's YOUR interpretation of what happens. Here is mine:
"Gee, this book called the Bible is just nuts. The apparent main protagonist (and, oddly enough, also the main antagonist), God, spends half of the book demanding that people worship and follow him, and completely destroy anyone who doesn't, man or woman, young or old, strong or infirm, sane or insane, born or unborn, good or evil, just or cruel, as well as demanding that animals be needlessly butchered and burned in his name, so that he can delight in the aroma and be entertained by his servants as they splatter animal blood all over everything while praising him for allowing them to do all of this. God gives out 10 commandments, which are supposed to be the absolute basis of morality, of which 4 are nothing but God saying "ME ME ME ME ME ME ME!!!!!!!!!!!!! and have nothing to do with morality at all, just God's Ego Trip. Be nice to mom and dad, ok that's good, but nothing about not abusing children, do not kill, ok thats cool too, but there's no do not rape[3]. Do not steal, good good, don't bear false witness, very good, don't commit adultery, ok that's perhaps good advice, but doesn't really need to be legislated. Then we have what can only be considered thought crime, as in do not covet. It's the very thought of wanting something someone else has. Not even wanting to steal it, just wanting to have it. In other words, a desire for something better than you already have. So there a whole lot of ambition and motivation, driven by a desire to also have nice things that other people have. Note that this commandment also treats women as the property of men, just as an ass or a slave. Oh yeah, I almost forgot, slavery isn't forbidden by this God either. Wow. What a guy. People actually believe that the character, God, as described in this book, is real, and did all of that stuff, and raises people from the dead, and demands foreskins, and will punish you forever if you don't bow down to him, is REAL?!!?!? BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! They probably also believe in the talking snake thing, lol, bet they believe Harry Potter is for real too, and they go around hunting Horcruxes HAHAHAHAHAHAHA"

That's a rough idea of what is going in the mind of this Atheist. It's no different than a critical examination of any book. It is just as absurd[4] as believing that Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban is real, and that you don't watch out, you will receive the Demetor's Kiss. That is how it appears to me. If you came to me, and told me, in all seriousness, and with utter conviction, and with a warning tone, pointing to a clearly fictitious document as evidence, that Sirius Black had escaped from Azkaban, I would be doing you a favor to have you institutionalized. I'm not saying that you should be institutionalized, I think actually that you are fairly sane and reasonable, but I just think that you have somehow reached a horribly wrong and silly conclusion (Sirius Black prison break,or God is Real) based on horrible evidence (Prisoner of Azkaban, or the Bible), and somehow are just entirely unable to see that. You have to entirely de-activate your BS detector to buy into any of the claims in the Bible. For the love of Pasta, it says that insects have FOUR legs. It says Pi=3. It says giants are totally real, and so are dragons. Snakes talk. A 600 year old guy got over 400.000 species of beetle, from 6 continents, onto a boat 450 feet long[5]. God created the whole universe and everything in it out of nothing. But he didn't realize Adam would need a wife, and had to make her out of one of Adam's ribs. You think that any book that could say such things is the path to eternal salvation? Good luck with that. I sincerely mean it. Good luck.

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Theists read these parts and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They submit and say, “You are so much greater than me, God. I don’t understand what this is. Show me more of who you are, so that I can understand.” And God responds with Jesus Christ. He’s the answer to our question and without him God has no answer.
Whereas to me, this is a complete non sequitur, and I don't understand how yet ANOTHER innocent person suffering and dying is supposed to make things all better again. That is just a seriously twisted idea. And if you seriously believed it to be true, wouldn't it require you, in order to do as much actual good as possible, in order to truly imitate Christ, wouldn't YOU have to ensure that you endured at least as significant suffering as your savior? Are you willing to do that? And if you are not willing to do that, what use could your servitude ever possibly mean to him?
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It is critical to the understanding of God, the Bible, the world and ourselves to know Jesus Christ. We can explore this in the next thread.
Then how come the people who are most against science, who are the loudest protestors of Darwin and true discovery of the world, have always been those most vocally in support of Jesus?

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I won’t start the thread today.
I should hope not, you'd damn well better have some kind of response to that! :P
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I’m already late for other things I have to do, like mow the lawn – darn weather :). But I will in the next couple of days. I also will only be spending at most an hour a night on it. That may mean delays, but if I limit myself to that then I can probably post even when things get busy. It doesn’t have to be an all or nothing.
Whatever you can do, life gets in the way sometimes.

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Thank you, kaziglu bey, for these conversations. I wish we could be doing this over beers, but we make the best.
Yikes! for a minute there, I thought you said bears. God happens to send his ursine familiars after us blasphemers from time to time, can't be too careful. Hope you have a good night, or whatever time of day it is there.
 1.  Whatever that means! I think that there could be a lot of ways to interpret it in the light of Jesus. As evidence, I present to you the thousands of denominations of Christianity and their not congruent state
 2. I believe in your case Roman Catholic, with a little bit of your own flavor likely, here and there. Shall we call it Simple Catholicism, or Roman Cavemanicism?
 3. again, an area where we fundamentally disagree, specifically as to whether the word "kill"="rape" (I contend that they do not)
 4. Actually, much more so, considering that there are quite extraordinary claims, lacking in extraordinary evidence, present in the Bible.
 5. Inspired by a late member of ours, Brian Sharp, who's resting in peace because he will never have to answer the door to Jehovah's Witnesses again.
Seriously though... What would happen if the Great Green Arkleseizure didn't fram up the rammastam before the hermite curve achieved maximum nurdfurdle velocity? Now THAT would be something. AmIrite?

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #357 on: April 08, 2012, 01:13:17 PM »
Hi 12 Monkeys,

SC To the last point Velkyn made....we have libraries dating back 12 to 15 thousand years....they are the stories our totem poles have told over all those generations.  Each family has a history lesson in the totems standing in front of their houses. Then you barbarians came along and destroyed it as devil worship

 12,000 plus years and 90% of the population gone by 1862,and you call us heathens
I don’t know what I can say. I agree that our history in the United States has many tragedies and how we treated Native Americans is one of them. I grew up in the middle of a Potawatomi reservation and many of my friends were Potawatomi’s (and a couple of “non-friends”, too.) I understand that there is a great loss in our nation and world. I am deeply sorry for the evil that has been done to your people.
Thanks for the statement of your views,but what does this have to do with the fact that history is written by the victorious?. There is the real version of history and the history written by those who win
There's no right there's no wrong,there's just popular opinion (Brad Pitt as Jeffery Goines in 12 monkeys)

Offline velkyn

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Re: Question for Christians about Judas
« Reply #358 on: April 09, 2012, 09:55:46 AM »
Unfortunately, the analogy is not the same. A comparison of the two would show that. It’s similar to what 12 Monkeys is trying to do, but even more extreme. Joseph Smith got his information allegedly through a source that only he saw (and a couple of others later). He was the source of all information. This is being compared to something that thousands of people experienced. It defined them as a people. The Joseph Smith story is not on the same scale at all. Maybe at a general abstract level it is and that’s where the hand waving comes in. Once we get to the specifics it falls apart.
oh my, let’s see, we have a book claimed to be the source of all information and then a line of men who have claimed to be the source of all information on this god. 

And more lies on how “thousands of people” experienced anything that the Catholics claim as true, of course with no evidence that this is the case. All of the lies about the Hebrews, funny how none of them are supported by archaeology or the contemporary writings of the real civilizations in the ANE.  No libraries to show how “literate” that SC is sure the Hebrews were.  NO evidence of anything about the exodus, no evidence for anything about the cruxifiction.  Yep, SC, your handwaving makes it all fall apart.  and cute to see you whine about posts that you don’t like.  Ooooh, shotgun posts.  Poor thing, how dare no one not ask you hard questions and expect you to support your basless claims with actual evidence. 

Gee, and we get more of the lies that Christians tell when trying to disregard atheists and people who don’t worshp their particular version of their god.  Really, SC?  The whole lie about everyone who doesn’t agree with you being only “rebellious”?  That’s all you’ve got now?  I suppose it is, when you have no actual evidence, you just have to resort to lying about people. 

Besides the poetic reason :), here’s the practical reason. When people read the OT parts you keep referring to, they have questions. Everyone does not just atheists. Atheists, or those inclined to atheism, read it and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They rebel (just like Judas) and say, “I am so much better than this God. If this is what he is, then I want nothing to do with him.” And God let’s them have their will.
  and again, woooo the conveniences of how your god lets some people have free will and then screws others over. 

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Theists read these parts and ask, “How can a good and gracious God do this?” They submit and say, “You are so much greater than me, God. I don’t understand what this is. Show me more of who you are, so that I can understand.” And God responds with Jesus Christ. He’s the answer to our question and without him God has no answer. It is critical to the understanding of God, the Bible, the world and ourselves to know Jesus Christ. We can explore this in the next thread.
  You know SC, I did exactly this and got no answer! Not a peep. So again we see the Christian make up lies on how their god responds to them and golly agrees with them.  There’s no evidence that JC even existed so your desperate attempt to claim him as an “answer” fails again. 

"There is no use in arguing with a man who can multiply anything by the square root of minus 1" - Pirates of Venus, ERB

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