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Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #29 on: May 03, 2012, 10:05:18 PM »
Well it might be cool if everyone could speak in poetic language, but people like me would just be out of luck.

According to my understanding it is a blue print.  Jesus did build upon it, but never did he teach, nor does the Bible as a whole teach, that sincerity is the only requirement for prayer to be answered.

The OP asked for a christian point of view.  This is mine.

The fact that sincerity alone is not sufficient for the worship of God, of which prayer is a part of, can be demonstrated with this scripture.

"For I bear them (Israel) witness that they have a zeal for God; but not according to accurate knowledge; for, because of not knowing the righteousness of God but seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness."  -- Romans 10:2-4.

Paranthesis mine.
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #30 on: May 04, 2012, 02:57:28 AM »
However, the first requirement must be that we are praying about something that God would approve of answering.

Indeedy.  So why does your god ignore so many prayers from people wanting to know if he exists?  Isn't that the first step towards the relationship that he wants with all of us?  Why did he ignore the prayers of those who slid slowly away from faith, desperate to stay believers?

Why does your god ignore the prayers of those who want to know him, Jst?
« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 04:28:03 AM by Anfauglir »
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 velkyn

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #31 on: May 04, 2012, 09:16:38 AM »
When his disciples asked Jesus how to pray he recited what is commonly known as the "Lord's Prayer".  Hence Jesus himself showed about which things are proper to pray about.  By this he also listed the order of importance.
Yep, heard this one too. More OneTrueChristian claims and ignorance of your bible.  Your JC says that any prayer (not just this formula) is what will be answered immediately and positively if asked in his name.  As I have indicated, the only out you might have is if it’s “god’s will” but then that makes any prayer worthless since it either will have been done in any circumstance or will not and your prayer means nothing to this god. 
let’s look at the whole context of the “lord’s prayer”:
Quote
Luke 11:1 One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord,teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” 2 He said to them, “When you pray, say:
“‘Father,hallowed be your name,your kingdom come.
3 Give us each day our daily bread.
4 Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation”
5 Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6 a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ 7 And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ 8 I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need.
9 “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. 10 For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.
11 “Which of you fathers, if your son asks for a fish, will give him a snake instead? 12 Or if he asks for an egg, will give him a scorpion? 13 If you then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!

the version in Matthew 6 is:
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“‘Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,10 your kingdom come,your will be done,on earth as it is in heaven.11 Give us today our daily bread.12 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.”
   He also says to pray in private, something soooo many Christians don’t do then it goes to say that one should not put up stores of earthly wealth and trust this god for everything, the “birds of the air” speech.

The two versions are quite different in context, aren’t they? One says to pray/ask for anything and the other says to pray/ask for nothing and simply trust in this god. So which one do we follow, jst?   And your claims that god will only answer that which he finds okay, really begs the questions: doesn’t your god find healing people something okay to do?  saving the starving?  protecting children?  keeping a soldier safe?  and on and on of all of the prayers that I would answer positively in an instant if I could but your god doesn’t. 
« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 09:20:34 AM by velkyn »
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Offline Omen

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #32 on: May 04, 2012, 10:35:14 AM »
"For I bear them (Israel) witness that they have a zeal for God; but not according to accurate knowledge; for, because of not knowing the righteousness of God but seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness."  -- Romans 10:2-4.

Christian A believes something different than Christian B.

Both Christian A and Christian B use the same verse above to criticize each other.

Who's right?

How do these rhetorical tautological ( circular ) statements inform anyone of anything, that isn't just inserted as self promotion without the ability to validate one's own claims?
"Religious faith is the antithesis to knowledge, it is the opposition to education, and it has to act in animosity against the free exchange of ideas.  Why? Because those things are what cause harm to a religions place in society most." - Me

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #33 on: May 04, 2012, 11:09:04 AM »
Simple.  God decides if it is sincere.
Convenient, how this explains away all of the prayers that God doesn't answer.  God must have felt they weren't being sincere enough to justify a response.  Or perhaps it's something else instead, I'll elaborate below.

Quote from: Jstwebbrowsing
Faith would be backed up by action.  For example, if a person asks God for wisdom then their faith might be demonstrated by searching the Bible for wisdom.  In this case, the Bible shows for one to gain wisdom from God one MUST do both simultaneously.
Even more convenient.  So they could be completely and totally sincere in asking God for wisdom, but if they didn't also search the Bible, they wouldn't get it.  And someone could read the Bible cover-to-cover, but without asking God for wisdom at the same time, they also wouldn't get it.

Do you not realize that this is just a fancy way to rationalize away all the instances where God doesn't answer prayers (because they aren't 'sincere'), doesn't give wisdom when asked for it (even if the person is sincere), and so on?  In other words, this line of reasoning cloaks the actual facts of the matter in a deception, this person didn't pray sincerely, that person didn't read the Bible while he was asking God for wisdom, therefore God chose not to dignify them with so much as an acknowledgement that he heard them.  Sure does a number on the idea of a loving, caring God, doesn't it?

Offline Energized

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #34 on: May 04, 2012, 11:58:32 AM »
Quote
and jst, you've just proven my point, the utter deceitfulness and ignorance of a Christian.  You've relied on the exact nonsense that all theists do.  You try to claim that only a positive answer means one is appropriately "sincere", and ignored the other equally valid options,  your god is an ass and no one has the right "forumula" or your god doesn't exist and theists are delusional.

You yourself have provided the key to understanding answered prayer.

Quote
21 “Not everyone who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’(Q) will enter the kingdom of heaven,(R) but only the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.(S) 22 Many will say to me on that day,(T) ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name and in your name drive out demons and in your name perform many miracles?’(U) 23 Then I will tell them plainly, ‘I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!’(V)Wiki

It can also be said that not everyone who says to me "Lord, Lord" will have their prayers answered.  If I sincerely pray for someone to die of a heart attack that does not force God to answer such a prayer.  In fact, he would find such a prayer "detestable."

The belief that God would answer a prayer solely based on sincerity shows ignorance in what the Bible actually teaches about prayer.

And sometimes God leaves prayers, seemingly, unanswered.  However, the first requirement must be that we are praying about something that God would approve of answering.  I mean I could sincerely pray for the earth to spontaneously combust.  However, the Bible shows that no such prayer will ever even be considered.

Your examples are laughable. You essentially say god won't answer "detestable" prayers and cite 2 examples that are quite over the top. Your own bible shows just how eager god is to answer detestable prayers from his chosen in the OT. While I don't see any examples of god making someone spontaneously combust, god doesnt' seem to mind sending bears to rip children apart. Your examples are FAIL.

How about answering prayers about starving and abused orphans in North Korea? Is that detestable to your god? Out of the billions of people on earth, surely at some point over the last 60 years some TrueChristian has asked that these children be spared of their horrible situations. And lo and behold, there they still sit in squalor, starving and being abused by the people that are supposed to care for them.

I want you to tell me why god wouldn't make himself known by miraculously saving these children?

And don't you dare regurgitate the party line about how god uses these as examples on what NOT to do as a christian.

If god truly wants a relationship with us, he is doing a PISS POOR JOB of it. Or maybe, just maybe, he isn't there...

E.

« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 12:04:22 PM by Energized »
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Bringing torment and pain to others.
O damned soul wallowing in your sin.
Perhaps it is time to die?'

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Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #35 on: May 04, 2012, 01:29:19 PM »
I will answer those questions that seem to have a reason other than to stir up contention.

Quote
So why does your god ignore so many prayers from people wanting to know if he exists?

First I would ask what sort of answer were they looking for?  What would it take to convince them?  Are they asking for a [miraculous] sign?  The Bible shows this is not going to happen during this time.  But apart from that what would be convincing to them?

Quote
but then that makes any prayer worthless

Here is one reason given by the Bible, and this is in harmony with what I said earlier about searching scripture.

"He that is turning his ear away from hearing the law—even his prayer is something detestable." (Proverbs 28:9)

This is my last statement showing that God does not answer just any prayer no matter the sincerity of the prayer. 

Quote
Christian A believes something different than Christian B.

Both Christian A and Christian B use the same verse above to criticize each other.

Who's right?

Yes this is the real problem for the search for truth.  How is someone to pick who to believe?  Don't think I have not asked myself this same question.  In fact this almost caused me to reject the Bible.  Perhaps my choice is wrong.  But at this point I cannot identify where it is wrong.  It does, however, address many questions that are left unanswered by others.

There are many scientific theories about this, that, and the other.  Some conflict and some don't.  How do you decide which to believe?  Or are they all correct?  Or are none correct?  The same can be said of religion.  It ultimatley is up to the individual to decide but because there are lies, and misunderstandings does not mean the Bible itself is wrong.  Maybe I am a liar, but this does not mean the Bible itself lies.

It is debatable if some prophesies in the Bible have come true.  However there are some that obviously have come true.  I will give one example of a prophesy that should be obvious to anyone that it has come true.  These prophesies are partly, but not soley, the reason I concluded the Bible is true.  And I do not wish to debate all the prophesies as some are debatable.  I just wish to provide one that is not.

"And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come."  (Mathew 24:14)

This is a very bold statement for someone 2000 years ago to make.  And while this has not yet been fully realized, as is evidence by the fact the end has not yet occured, it is well on it's way and there is no reason to believe it will not be completely fulfilled.  By the time the end comes noone will be able to claim ignorance, at least not unwillful ignorance.  But lets not change the topic to prophesy.

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So they could be completely and totally sincere in asking God for wisdom, but if they didn't also search the Bible, they wouldn't get it.

Perhaps they will be given some but the answer is a resounding no.  Someone may object what about those that don't or haven't in the past had access to the scriptures or even been exposed to the idea of Christ.  These will be resurrected upon a paradise earth and given the opportunity to learn and act in accordance.  This is why Satan will be unrestrained again for a "short time".  It is in order to test such ones.  By the time all is said and done ( by the end of the 1000 year reign) EVERY person that has ever lived will be given the opportunity to learn.  In our day, however, there is almost no excuse for ignorance.

Quote
And someone could read the Bible cover-to-cover, but without asking God for wisdom at the same time, they also wouldn't get it.

Yes this is what the Bible teaches.


Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline jdawg70

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #36 on: May 04, 2012, 01:36:46 PM »
Well it might be cool if everyone could speak in poetic language, but people like me would just be out of luck.

According to my understanding it is a blue print.  Jesus did build upon it, but never did he teach, nor does the Bible as a whole teach, that sincerity is the only requirement for prayer to be answered.

The OP asked for a christian point of view.  This is mine.

The fact that sincerity alone is not sufficient for the worship of God, of which prayer is a part of, can be demonstrated with this scripture.

"For I bear them (Israel) witness that they have a zeal for God; but not according to accurate knowledge; for, because of not knowing the righteousness of God but seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the Law, so that everyone exercising faith may have righteousness."  -- Romans 10:2-4.

Paranthesis mine.

It still seems to me that Jesus simply failed to answer his disciple's question insofar as 'how to pray' is concerned.  I stand by the idea that the blueprint that Jesus gave to those questioning is pretty useless without explanation of the blueprint.  That blueprint does not rule out sincerity as a requirement for answered prayer, but it certainly doesn't include it, or, in fact, explain anything at all as to what a proper prayer is.

I'm not really clear on your interpretation of Romans 10:2-4, because I don't necessarily see that as a plea for sincerity.  It seems more a question of faith than sincerity.  But my interpretation of that bit of scripture is probably spotty at best.
"When we landed on the moon, that was the point where god should have come up and said 'hello'. Because if you invent some creatures, put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, you f**king turn up and say 'well done'."
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Offline Omen

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #37 on: May 04, 2012, 01:43:12 PM »
Quote
Christian A believes something different than Christian B.

Both Christian A and Christian B use the same verse above to criticize each other.

Who's right?
It does, however, address many questions that are left unanswered by others.

Such as?

Quote
There are many scientific theories about this,

Such as?

Quote
that, and the other.  Some conflict and some don't.  How do you decide which to believe?  Or are they all correct?  Or are none correct?  The same can be said of religion.

No, science doesn't work like this.  Either a scientific theory is supported by evidential observation, prediction, experimentation.. or it isn't.  Either it is falsifiable or it isn't.  No where is it limited to one's arbitrary decision.  Neither does logic.

Quote
Maybe I am a liar, but this does not mean the Bible itself lies.

You are dishonest.

Quote
It is debatable if some prophesies in the Bible have come true.  However there are some that obviously have come true.

Such as?

Quote
"And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come."  (Mathew 24:14)

Jesus doesn't fulfill a host of Judaic Messianic Prophecies and they are swept under the rug of the 'second coming', the 'second coming' has no biblical support in Judaism or claims associated with the Judaic Messianic Prophecy.  I challenged you on this before, but you didn't see fit to respond.

You've managed to not answer anything and equivocate in response to everything.  You made several unsupported assertions, falsely described science out of your own ignorance, and hypocritically ignored the own problems in your own claims.

It's not just a narrow problem between believing Christian A or Christian B, its the problem of distinguishing claims from Christian A, from Christian B, Muslim C, Scientologist D, etc. etc. etc. to infinite.  The issue is that the claims that you make associated with your religion are nebulous to the point of being meaningless.  You make circular appeals to nonsense that ANYONE could claim at ANY point, in the complete absence of any reason to believe it.

Why don't you seem to care that your claims are so vague and nebulous as to be meaningless?
« Last Edit: May 04, 2012, 01:44:51 PM by Omen »
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Offline jdawg70

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #38 on: May 04, 2012, 01:48:51 PM »
Yes this is the real problem for the search for truth.  How is someone to pick who to believe?  Don't think I have not asked myself this same question.  In fact this almost caused me to reject the Bible.  Perhaps my choice is wrong.  But at this point I cannot identify where it is wrong.  It does, however, address many questions that are left unanswered by others.

There are many scientific theories about this, that, and the other.  Some conflict and some don't.  How do you decide which to believe?  Or are they all correct?  Or are none correct?  The same can be said of religion.  It ultimatley is up to the individual to decide but because there are lies, and misunderstandings does not mean the Bible itself is wrong.  Maybe I am a liar, but this does not mean the Bible itself lies.

Well, it *isn't* really up to the individual to decide objective truth.  That's what makes it objective truth after all.  How do you decide which to believe?  How about this: the one that describes objective reality most accurately, and predicts the behavior of objective reality most reliably.  If I have one hypothesis that models the motion of the sun as a being of significant power dragging it across the sky with a chariot, and another hypothesis that models the motion of the sun as mechanistic behavior of the basic interactions of matter, than I'll have to go with the hypothesis that is *best supported by the evidence*.

And if *both* of those hypothesis are ill-supported by the evidence, I'll dismiss them both and say 'I don't know how the sun moves about in the sky'.  And maybe this is where you're actually deriving your claim to 'ultimately it is up to the individual to decide' - that it is a function of the subjective person that decides what the threshold for acceptable evidence is.  That is an interesting topic for conversation in and of itself, but probably outside of the scope of this topic.

I believe you when you say that you've asked yourself the question "how is someone to pick who to believe"?  But that's kind of the issue - you should base your beliefs not on the whims of a person but on the preponderance of evidence.  You shouldn't really care if 1 person or 4 billion people say "the sky is purple".  The sky's color is what it is independently of the thoughts and beliefs of sentient creatures.  If you want to find out what color the sky is, look at the sky.  Measure the wavelength of the light emitted from the sky.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #39 on: May 04, 2012, 01:52:30 PM »
Perhaps they will be given some but the answer is a resounding no.  Someone may object what about those that don't or haven't in the past had access to the scriptures or even been exposed to the idea of Christ.  These will be resurrected upon a paradise earth and given the opportunity to learn and act in accordance.  This is why Satan will be unrestrained again for a "short time".  It is in order to test such ones.  By the time all is said and done ( by the end of the 1000 year reign) EVERY person that has ever lived will be given the opportunity to learn.  In our day, however, there is almost no excuse for ignorance.
No, your answer is a resounding no.  Who are you to dictate to others what God meant or didn't mean?

Quote from: Jstwebbrowsing
Yes this is what the Bible teaches.
No, it is what you teach.  Again, who are you to decide that this is what God means or doesn't mean?

All you're doing here is rationalizing why you believe what you do and why you think that it's accurate.  But who's to say you are?  Lots of people have their own ideas as to what the Bible means and what God says.  Are we to believe that you, out of all those people with different ideas, got it right?  This is actually a serious question.

Offline Omen

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #40 on: May 04, 2012, 01:59:44 PM »
There is a more distinct issue in that religious ideology is nested in layers of solipsism and various kinds of equivocating rhetoric meant specifically to distance the claims themselves from any kind of intellectual higher criticism or skepticism. Apologist go out of their way to concentrate on how they use language to describe an issue, often through misrepresentation, to make appeals to an audience of people that believe already rather than an audience that doesn't believe. Very little apologia is concentrated towards rationalizing belief to those who do not believe. For this reason much of religious ideology doesn't even have a seat at the table of higher criticism, to the absurd point that even if a god were to exist the means in which they claim their religious ideology and defend it would make it impossible to determine if they even had the right one. ( much less that there is one )
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Offline velkyn

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #41 on: May 04, 2012, 02:13:15 PM »
I will answer those questions that seem to have a reason other than to stir up contention.
aka, not the ones that ask the really hard questions.
Quote
First I would ask what sort of answer were they looking for?  What would it take to convince them?  Are they asking for a [miraculous] sign?  The Bible shows this is not going to happen during this time.  But apart from that what would be convincing to them?
  Are you saying your god couldn’t convince a mere human?  And the bible had no problems in having miracles for the express purpose of showing that JC was who he said.
Quote
John 10: Do not believe me unless I do the works of my Father. 38 But if I do them, even though you do not believe me, believe the works, that you may know and understand that the Father is in me, and I in the Father
Your excuses are typical.  You wish to declare that your god doesn’t do miracles anymore, and contradict your fellow Christians.  You claim that atheists don’t ‘really want evidence and that is a lie. 
Quote
Here is one reason given by the Bible, and this is in harmony with what I said earlier about searching scripture.
"He that is turning his ear away from hearing the law—even his prayer is something detestable." (Proverbs 28:9)
This is my last statement showing that God does not answer just any prayer no matter the sincerity of the prayer.
  No, that is a verse from the bible with no attempt to explain it, not your last statement at all.  just one more dodge.  You keep claiming to know what exactly it is that your god wants in prayer but fail to present it.  and jst, when I was losing my faith I hadn’t already lost it, so my ear was still turned to this god.  Another failed excuse on your part. 
Quote
How do you decide which to believe?  Or are they all correct?  Or are none correct?  The same can be said of religion.  It ultimatley is up to the individual to decide but because there are lies, and misunderstandings does not mean the Bible itself is wrong.  Maybe I am a liar, but this does not mean the Bible itself lies.
evidence, Jst.  And no the same thing cannot be said about religion since we still have no evidence to support any yet.  And the bible itself does lie.  Sorry to burst your bubble but it’s true.  Your god claimed to destroy the city of Tyre to the point of it never being found again.  The city of Tyre has some 60,000 people in it, and we know the archaeology of its old city too.  Your god made a claim that is not true.  That’s the one good direct lie.  The fact that none of the essential events in the bible have ever been shown to have happened, that’s just even more evidence. 

Who cares if Matthew 24:14 is “bold”, it’s a lie from people who thought the world was much tinier than it really is. Where’s this “end will come”?  How many Christians have claimed that lie so far?  The JW’s are the funniest, claiming that the end times started with invisible things since their claims of real events failed miserably.

It seems the only excuse for ignorance is religion. And jst, just great how you think some magical omnipotent, omniscienet being needs to “test” anyone.  Why does it need a test? It already supposedly knows everything it wants to know.  Those people were spared by this knowledge that they were believes.  You want us to believe that god removes that information from his mind and has to have a bloody war again to “test” people? 

and sad to say, I asked for help understanding the bible from this god when I was a believer.  It failed in that too. 

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Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #42 on: May 04, 2012, 02:35:19 PM »
I will address only those questions formed with reasonableness.  A person that would ask for an example of contradictory theories does not seem reasonable to me and will never convince me of anything in this matter.  My thread about questioning the origin of life and evolution demonstrates there are such theories.  And again, I gave an example of a prohesy that is being fulfilled and this is totally dismissed.

Quote
It still seems to me that Jesus simply failed to answer his disciple's question insofar as 'how to pray' is concerned.  I stand by the idea that the blueprint that Jesus gave to those questioning is pretty useless without explanation of the blueprint.

You should keep in mind that Jesus was speaking to those that already were familiar with all the scripture that was available at the time.  Jesus was not speaking to those that had no prior knowledge of prayer.  It is assumed they already had some knowledge.

In this instance Jesus showed what it acceptable to pray about.

1.  The sanctification of Jehovah's name.
2.  Praying for his kingdom to come.
3.  Praying for personal needs.
4.  Forgiveness for sin
5.  Not to be led into temptation

Jesus did not say God would not answer any other prayers but these are the most important things to pray about.

But before one can decide the meaning of any subject in the Bible all references and teachings on the subject must be taken into account and harmonized.  Otherwise, someone may conclude sincerity alone is enough for prayer to be answered but this is simply not true according to the Bible as a whole.  And I don't believe this is one of those instances that theists are in disagreement.  And this is why a person MUST search the Bible to find the wisdom needed to please God.

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I'm not really clear on your interpretation of Romans 10:2-4, because I don't necessarily see that as a plea for sincerity.  It seems more a question of faith than sincerity.  But my interpretation of that bit of scripture is probably spotty at best.

Yes, faith is also what is required, above and beyond sincerity.  Most reasonable people will conclude more than sincerity is required as you have demonstrated by your own understanding, coupled with your reasonableness.

As far as the interpretation of Romans 10:2-4 consider this.  Before Paul's conversion he was one of the foremost among those oppressing the christian congregation.  Paul was already a highly religious person and even based his belief on available scripture.  Paul was very zealous for his religion.  But as scripture goes on to show Paul was simply wrong, at least in certain matters.  Did Paul pray for the christians to simply go away and did he do so zealously?  Perhaps, but would/did God answer that prayer?

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Well, it *isn't* really up to the individual to decide objective truth.  How about this: the one that describes objective reality most accurately,

I am in agreement.  To me the universe shows intelligent design.  Others disagree.  An athiest says a christian has no evidence of a god and concludes there is no god.  However they too have no evidence that god does not exist, so I conclude there is but not simply because of this however.  To me the Bible is more evidence.  It comes down to what one chooses to believe.  To me it seems they, or at least some, say, "Science and the universe exists therefore God does not."  I conclude the opposite based on the same evidence.  Somewhere there has to be a first uncaused cause for the existance of the universe if there was in fact a beginning.  Athiests offer no answer.  The Bible does.

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But that's kind of the issue - you should base your beliefs not on the whims of a person but on the preponderance of evidence.

I do so to the best of my ability.  I do however base my work to some extent on the work of others as do scientits, but I do test if their ideas are correct the best I am able.  I have no desire to reinvent the wheel in other words.  Seeing the fulfillment of prophesy I mentioned above is more evidence.
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #43 on: May 04, 2012, 02:48:26 PM »
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Are you saying your god couldn’t convince a mere human?

No, I'm saying that things that didn't work in the past to convince them have no need to be repeated.

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You wish to declare that your god doesn’t do miracles anymore, and contradict your fellow Christians.

Have you seen any?  It seems reasonable to conclude that God does not.

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You keep claiming to know what exactly it is that your god wants in prayer but fail to present it.

No I do not.  I claim more is required than sincerity and have provided proof from scripture.

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Who cares if Matthew 24:14 is “bold”, it’s a lie from people who thought the world was much tinier than it really is.

Nevertheless it has happened and not just in their tiny world. 





Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #44 on: May 04, 2012, 03:07:51 PM »
Don't think to skate out of answering the question I raised, jst, just because you think it isn't "reasonable".  It was a completely serious question and I expect an answer - why do you think you have the correct interpretation of the Bible, instead of all those others with different ideas but at least as much conviction about them as you have?

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #45 on: May 04, 2012, 03:17:51 PM »
Don't think to skate out of answering the question I raised, jst, just because you think it isn't "reasonable".  It was a completely serious question and I expect an answer - why do you think you have the correct interpretation of the Bible, instead of all those others with different ideas but at least as much conviction about them as you have?

I did not intend to do this.  But give me a moment.  I'm on the phone.
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline jdawg70

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #46 on: May 04, 2012, 03:25:50 PM »
I will address only those questions formed with reasonableness.  A person that would ask for an example of contradictory theories does not seem reasonable to me and will never convince me of anything in this matter.  My thread about questioning the origin of life and evolution demonstrates there are such theories.  And again, I gave an example of a prohesy that is being fulfilled and this is totally dismissed.

Are you referring to:
"And this good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come."  (Mathew 24:14)

Because that really isn't a prophesy being fulfilled.  That's more like a plan being executed to success.

Example:
Let's say that the Chinese government made the following declaration:
"In 20 years China will be the dominate economic power in the world."

And, lo in behold, in 20 years, we find that China is indisputably the dominate economic power of the world.  Would you say that a prophesy was fulfilled, or that China's push to be that economic power was successful?

What I'm really getting at, though, is that it is rather difficult to say for certain that a prophesy was fulfilled.  You haven't ruled out other explanations aside from 'divine revelation'.  Christianity has been, and is, an evangelical religion, which is to say that one of the tenants of the belief structure is to spread the word.  Is it really all that surprising that it was successful?

A more poignant prophesy would have been on the order of "In 2000 years the world shall be engrossed in the Bible, replicated at fantastic speeds onto parchment accessible by any and all persons upon this and far away lands."  That's a bit more specific and substantially less ambiguous prophesy.

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Well, it *isn't* really up to the individual to decide objective truth.  How about this: the one that describes objective reality most accurately,

I am in agreement.  To me the universe shows intelligent design.  Others disagree.  An athiest says a christian has no evidence of a god and concludes there is no god.  However they too have no evidence that god does not exist, so I conclude there is but not simply because of this however.  To me the Bible is more evidence.  It comes down to what one chooses to believe.  To me it seems they, or at least some, say, "Science and the universe exists therefore God does not."  I conclude the opposite based on the same evidence.  Somewhere there has to be a first uncaused cause for the existance of the universe if there was in fact a beginning.  Athiests offer no answer.  The Bible does.
First.  They also have no evidence that Fxlax the Intangible Conqueror doesn't exist, but that doesn't lend *any* credence that Fxlax *does* exist.  But I can say with a straight face that I do not believe that Fxlax exists.  Same can apply to god.  I could have exactly 0 pieces of evidence that god does not exist.  But in the face of no evidence that god does exist, when asked the question "Do you believe that god exists?" I have to say 'no' - which makes me an atheist.  No evidence for the non-existence of god required, because I have no existence *for* the existence of god.  "Burden of proof" and "positive assertion" are two key phrases you may wish to familiarize yourself with.

Second.  It doesn't come down to what one chooses to believe.  The existence or non-existence of god is a question that has an answer irrespective of what any sentient creature believes.

Third.  Not sure who says "Science and the universe exists therefore God does not", but I'd believe that those people are out there.  The conclusion does not logically follow from the premises and therefore the statement is logically incorrect.  The correctness of the conclusion is another matter.

Fourth.  On 'uncaused cause' and existence.  Atheists offer no answer - well, I don't think that's true, but I'll just go ahead and accept that premise for this conversation.  So, atheists offer no answer and the bible does offer an answer.  Are you just looking for an answer or a *correct* answer?  Here, let me go ahead and give you another answer then:

The universe exists and has a beginning.  Something established that beginning.  That beginning is a cosmic, uncaused, non-sentient, blue pogostick.

Now you have 2 answers.  Is one right and the other wrong?  Are they both right?  Or are they both wrong?  How can you tell?

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But that's kind of the issue - you should base your beliefs not on the whims of a person but on the preponderance of evidence.

I do so to the best of my ability.  I do however base my work to some extent on the work of others as do scientits, but I do test if their ideas are correct the best I am able.  I have no desire to reinvent the wheel in other words.  Seeing the fulfillment of prophesy I mentioned above is more evidence.

I understand deferring to authority figures.  I don't really have access to time on the Hubble or have a particle accelerator at my disposal, so sometimes I'm kind of stuck referring to authority.  However, if, in principle, authority is the ONLY evidence I can muster, well, that should be cause for alarm.

So, to the best of your ability, are you actually convinced of the fulfillment of prophesy?  Have you critically analyzed these prophesies?  I would say that, with respect to the above prophesy you talked about above (assuming I was right in which one you were referring to), you haven't.  Because on the face of it, it's an incredibly vague prophesy at best and frankly just looks like a Vision statement of a company trying to fulfill it's goals and actually succeeding.
"When we landed on the moon, that was the point where god should have come up and said 'hello'. Because if you invent some creatures, put them on the blue one and they make it to the grey one, you f**king turn up and say 'well done'."
- Eddie Izzard

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #47 on: May 04, 2012, 04:23:25 PM »
The most distressing thing about prayer is that there are many very deserving people who pray in the most sincere way possible for the most desperate reasons. And god always says no.

I once sat with a poor peasant woman and her baby as the child died of typhoid in a third world hospital. That mother prayed and prayed, night and day without even stopping to eat the food I brought her. She prayed until she was utterly exhausted and on the point of collapse. The baby died. :'(

Was this women not sincere enough? Was the prayer not for a good enough cause? Was it for a frivolous or selfish purpose, to enrich someone with some unneeded luxury? Was the prayer to cause someone harm?

No.

The only comfort I had is that everything that we could have done for the baby medically had been done. I could offer that woman no comfort, because I don't think the baby went to a better place, or is in heaven with the angels,  or died to be a part of god's wonderful plan. She probably tried to convince herself of that stuff, and her church would certainly tell her that stuff. But the fact remains that poor babies get sick and die.

I would never tell that lady that there is no god who could have saved that baby. But I know that her prayers were wasted, said into the empty air. She might as well have been praying to Satan or Krishna or Hera or to Harry Potter. Or to me. It would have ended the same way.

So, god says no to prayers for poor, dying babies said by their frantic, grieving moms. Either god is as evil as can be, or there is no god. I choose door number two.  :P
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #48 on: May 04, 2012, 05:12:26 PM »
JST your fellow Christians do not agree with you and think that God performs miracles daily. It could be a miracle plane crash survivour or almost anything.....are they wrong?
There's no right there's no wrong,there's just popular opinion (Brad Pitt as Jeffery Goines in 12 monkeys)

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #49 on: May 04, 2012, 05:26:27 PM »
Don't think to skate out of answering the question I raised, jst, just because you think it isn't "reasonable".  It was a completely serious question and I expect an answer - why do you think you have the correct interpretation of the Bible, instead of all those others with different ideas but at least as much conviction about them as you have?

While some things in the Bible may be "gray" some things are not so much.  I am certain the Bible teaches that God will allow the truth to be known, at least to the extent it has been revealed.  Some will, and always have, accurately known the truth.  These people have always been a minority.  I would not expect things to be different now.  Have I discovered this minority?  Perhaps, but perhaps not.  But the Bible says they do exist, and they will teach the truth.

So when I say a person must choose what to believe I'm not suggesting this belief will change things.  As much as I see people believing in a burning hell, I myself do not see this teaching in the Bible.  But it's either one or the other.  Either there is a burning place of fire where "departed souls" are tortured or there is not.  In fact, coming here is mostly for the purpose of testing my beliefs.

All I am saying is that the truth exists and I ask consideration be given to what I have learned and been taught.  If I am wrong then I would like to know it.  My quest has not been the quest of becoming a christian insomuch as a search for the truth for what the Bible really is meant to teach.  Even if God doesn't exist, the Bible teaches something.  What does it, for a fact, teach about God?  This has been my question.  Like you I don't want opinions I want fact.

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Because that really isn't a prophesy being fulfilled.  That's more like a plan being executed to success.

I do not view this as being any different from all other prophesies in the Bible.  They are all about God executing his plan, or more accuratey his purpose.  In addition this was not just anyone making this claim.  It was the son of God.  His statement was a statement of fact and not a statement of hope this would happen.  It therefore is a prophecy.

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What I'm really getting at, though, is that it is rather difficult to say for certain that a prophesy was fulfilled.  You haven't ruled out other explanations aside from 'divine revelation'.  Christianity has been, and is, an evangelical religion, which is to say that one of the tenants of the belief structure is to spread the word.  Is it really all that surprising that it was successful?

Yes I agree.  This is just one strand of evidence and in itself doesn't prove anything in totality.  But once strand after strand keeps adding up there comes a point that it can no longer be coincidence.

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They also have no evidence that Fxlax the Intangible Conqueror doesn't exist, but that doesn't lend *any* credence that Fxlax *does* exist.

But the point I was making is that they base their opinion on a lack of evidence.  The same they say I do.  They want evidence?  So do I?  How could I base my opinion on a lack of evidence?  I've never hear of Fxlax so I will use Santa.  If Santa exists then there would be presents from him under the Christmas tree, but this doesn't happen.  If God exists then there would be intelligent design.  Intelligent design does exist.

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Third.  Not sure who says "Science and the universe exists therefore God does not", but I'd believe that those people are out there.  The conclusion does not logically follow from the premises and therefore the statement is logically incorrect.  The correctness of the conclusion is another matter.

I agree.  It's how one "interprets" the evidence.

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The universe exists and has a beginning.  Something established that beginning.  That beginning is a cosmic, uncaused, non-sentient, blue pogostick.

First the answer must be something with the ability to create the universe.  God seems a reasonable consideration.

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Fourth.  On 'uncaused cause' and existence.  Atheists offer no answer - well, I don't think that's true, but I'll just go ahead and accept that premise for this conversation.  So, atheists offer no answer and the bible does offer an answer.  Are you just looking for an answer or a *correct* answer?

No I want the correct answer.  But at this time there's only one option to choose from.  Unless I "believe" science will eventually come up with another.  And if they do it may very well be God.

Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline 12 Monkeys

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #50 on: May 04, 2012, 05:31:20 PM »
Your last statement....the correct answer. It can't be found where you are looking,because you ignore all things based in fact,and put your eggs all in the faith basket.
There's no right there's no wrong,there's just popular opinion (Brad Pitt as Jeffery Goines in 12 monkeys)

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #51 on: May 04, 2012, 06:01:32 PM »
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The most distressing thing about prayer is that there are many very deserving people who pray in the most sincere way possible for the most desperate reasons. And god always says no.

This is a very very sad story and it is not uncommon for people to completly lose faith after such a thing.  I am just curious to know.  Did this woman?

And I would ask have you searched the Bible for an answer?  According to my understanding it is part, not of a plan, but of an issue.  The issue is that of rulership over the earth.  God created the earth with the intention of ruling it.  If in fact, God is ruling the earth now then he is certainly to blame.  However, beginning with Adam and Eve, mankind struck out on it's own to rule itself and decide what is right and wrong on it's own.  God has allowed them to do so and to let them decide for themselves if they can do it as good as he can.  But note that God did warn them that if they chose to be independant that they would ultimately fail when he said "thou shalt surely die."  I'm sure this broke Jehovah's heart when he began to allow this.  According to my undertanding he still is feeling this hurt and a lot of anger is building up along the way.

While I am not saying that God does not at all help anyone at anytime, I am saying that he must allow us to experience this suffering to prove to ourselves, as a whole, that we need his help.  So yes sometimes prayers like that go unanswered and I know it pains God himself greatly.  But God is not to blame.  If mankind was doing things God's way, as opposed to the self-destructive way, and these things happen then yes it is God's fault.  But as long as mankind, as a whole, is doing things that God has warned them not to do then you cannot blame God for them suffering the consequenses.

This is the ENTIRE theme of the Bible.  It is not "salvation".  Salvation is just a byproduct.  The entire theme of the Bible is the establishment of God's kingdom on earth.  God's kingdom isn't something that christians experience in their heart.  It's a real kingdom with rulers and subjects.  This Kingom will eventually take over this earth and God will present his case and demonstrate his ability to rule the earth.  During this time the Bible promises there will be no suffering at all.

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JST your fellow Christians do not agree with you and think that God performs miracles daily. It could be a miracle plane crash survivour or almost anything.....are they wrong?

I do not know enough about what the Bible says in this matter to form a good opinion.  He may perform "small" miracles of a nature like this or he may not.

But so far as performing miracles to prove his existance no.  So far as humans having the ability to perform the miracles of the Apostles no.



Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #52 on: May 04, 2012, 06:02:44 PM »
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Your last statement....the correct answer. It can't be found where you are looking,because you ignore all things based in fact,

Please provide me with fact that I should not believe in God.
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #53 on: May 04, 2012, 06:04:30 PM »
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because you ignore all things based on fact

Like what?
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline Quesi

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #54 on: May 04, 2012, 06:12:02 PM »


And I would ask have you searched the Bible for an answer?  According to my understanding it is part, not of a plan, but of an issue.  The issue is that of rulership over the earth.  God created the earth with the intention of ruling it.  If in fact, God is ruling the earth now then he is certainly to blame.  However, beginning with Adam and Eve, mankind struck out on it's own to rule itself and decide what is right and wrong on it's own.  God has allowed them to do so and to let them decide for themselves if they can do it as good as he can.  But note that God did warn them that if they chose to be independant that they would ultimately fail when he said "thou shalt surely die."  I'm sure this broke Jehovah's heart when he began to allow this.  According to my undertanding he still is feeling this hurt and a lot of anger is building up along the way.

But if he is an all-knowing, all-powerful, god, he knew that this was going to happen.  He set humanity up to suffer. 

And now he is getting angry about it? 

He is just a crotchety old patriarch who sets everyone up to fail, and then cuts them out of his will because they are so incompetent? 

Is this really a god who is worthy of your love and respect? 

Offline nogodsforme

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #55 on: May 04, 2012, 06:17:19 PM »
Of course this woman did not lose her faith. She would say something like what you just did. But somewhere in her head she knows that if she had been in Europe, Japan, or some other place with better living conditions and health care, her baby probably would not have died. Guess god listens to rich peoples' prayers more often. Especially in those godless socialist countries.

Things like infant mortality rate are not randomly distributed accross the earth. The more devoutly religious a country or region is, the more likely it is for your baby to die. The more a place relies on science and less on religion, the more likely it is that your baby won't die. Strange how that works the opposite of the way religious people say it should.... &)
Extraordinary claims of the bible don't even have ordinary evidence.

Kids aren't paying attention most of the time in science classes so it seems silly to get worked up over ID being taught in schools.

Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #56 on: May 04, 2012, 06:18:23 PM »
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But if he is an all-knowing, all-powerful, god, he knew that this was going to happen.

He also knows how it is going to end.  With perfection.
Ye are my witnesses, saith Jehovah, and my servant whom I have chosen; that ye may know and believe me, and understand that I am he: before me there was no God formed, neither shall there be after me.

Isaiah 43:10

Offline HAL

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Re: praying to god to make himself known
« Reply #57 on: May 04, 2012, 06:19:19 PM »
He also knows how it is going to end. 

Then what's the point of it all?