Author Topic: For Theist: Genesis 1:1, why anyone bother interpreting this as if a god exists?  (Read 1740 times)

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Offline Quesi

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If not a summary of the video then, tell us in your own words. 

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

You believe this.  Why?  We see it as a really good story that was created by people who had no idea that they were standing on a globe, on a planet that orbited a huge sun, which is similar, but still so different, from the billions of stars that populate our galaxy, which is one of billions of galaxies. 

I can see why people believed this in the past.  When they thought they lived on a flat slab, with the "heavens" above them.  But we know so much more now. 

Greybeard watched the video, and he says that the only argument offered was that the universe "looks designed."  That is not a very strong argument.  There must be something else that makes you believe that it was not only a god, but your God, that is responsible. 

Offline jetson

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Maybe you would even make a good neighbor.

I'm an excellent neighbor.  :)

Now go ahead and give the summary a try.

I am father to four energetic boys.  I make a terrible neighbor.    &)

I dunno if I will try or not.  The only reason I have stuck it out this long is in hopes that at least some are open to new ideas about Christianity.

First, we'll need some actual new ideas!

Offline Omen

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At any rate, thank you to those that are not like "them".  Maybe you would even make a good neighbor.

No need to project hostility because your insecure enough to be threatened by being held accountable  for your 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 Jstwebbrowsing

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At any rate, thank you to those that are not like "them".  Maybe you would even make a good neighbor.

No need to project hostility because your insecure enough to be threatened by being held accountable  for your claims.

Let me clarify.  Once you get past the vocabulary there is nothing left to be intimidated by.
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 Omen

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At any rate, thank you to those that are not like "them".  Maybe you would even make a good neighbor.

No need to project hostility because your insecure enough to be threatened by being held accountable  for your claims.

Let me clarify.  Once you get past the vocabulary there is nothing left to be intimidated by.

So I can expect you to support your claims from now without equivocating, hesitation, and whining?

Are you going to return and address the questions asked of you in this thread?
"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 Jstwebbrowsing

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At any rate, thank you to those that are not like "them".  Maybe you would even make a good neighbor.

No need to project hostility because your insecure enough to be threatened by being held accountable  for your claims.

Let me clarify.  Once you get past the vocabulary there is nothing left to be intimidated by.

So I can expect you to support your claims from now without equivocating, hesitation, and whining?

Are you going to return and address the questions asked of you in this thread?

For you?  No.  For someone that has demonstrated the ability to have a civil conversation even with the likes of me, perhaps.  I am still on the fence.
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 Alzael

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I dunno if I will try or not.  The only reason I have stuck it out this long is in hopes that at least some are open to new ideas about Christianity.

I'll ignore the fact that you first and foremost have no new ideas to show us. Really anybody who's only source of evidence is a two thousand year old book cobbled together for different ancient manuscripts has no business even trying to pretend that their ideas are new. But let's deal with something else.

What exactly are you going to open people up to? You can't even form your own arguments. You just had to link an entire video because your own ability to justify even your most basic beliefs is so poorly lacking. You can't prove or even define your own beliefs. And more to the point you're entirely closed to new (or rather any) ideas yourself. Every single time you've been shown something that did not agree with your narrow view of the world you've ran away or tried to dodge and avoid it.

So what makes you think anybody could ever be open to you when you possess neither open-mindedness, nor the ability to even properly form and communicate your ideas?
"I drank what?!"- Socrates

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Offline Alzael

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For you?  No.  For someone that has demonstrated the ability to have a civil conversation even with the likes of me, perhaps.  I am still on the fence.

Jst, as it stands so far about four or five people on the forum have asked you to address these questions. Don't try to use being annoyed at Omen as an excuse for not answering for your claims. I remind you that the rules of the forum state that you are responsible for doing this. You do not get to just make claims and then ignore it when you get called on them.

Now will you respond to the numerous calls to answer for your claims or not?
"I drank what?!"- Socrates

"Dying for something when you know you'll be resurrected is not a sacrifice.It's a parlour trick."- an aquaintance

Philip of Macedon: (via messenger) If we enter Sparta, we will raze all your buildings and ravage all your women.
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Offline Jstwebbrowsing

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Allow me to paraphrase

I'll ignore the fact that you first and foremost have no new ideas to show us. Really anybody who's only source of evidence is a two thousand year old book cobbled together for different ancient manuscripts has no business even trying to pretend that their ideas are new

You can't even form your own arguments. You just had to link an entire video because your own ability to justify even your most basic beliefs is so poorly lacking. You can't prove or even define your own beliefs

Quote
Now will you respond to the numerous calls to answer for your claims or not?

The answer is no.  I give up.  I accept defeat.  You win.  You've outsmarted me at every turn.  I will not again attempt to inform anyone here of my religious beliefs for the little while longer I am here.  If someone would like to ask me a question because they genuinly want to know my answer then they can do so in PM.  I'm just thankful I'm still smart enough to wipe my butt.

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 Alzael

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It's not about winning or losing. It's about ideas. We're just waiting for you to actually present some of value.
"I drank what?!"- Socrates

"Dying for something when you know you'll be resurrected is not a sacrifice.It's a parlour trick."- an aquaintance

Philip of Macedon: (via messenger) If we enter Sparta, we will raze all your buildings and ravage all your women.
Spartan Reply: If.

Offline Omen

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So I can expect you to support your claims from now without equivocating, hesitation, and whining?

Are you going to return and address the questions asked of you in this thread?

For you?  No.  For someone that has demonstrated the ability to have a civil conversation even with the likes of me, perhaps.  I am still on the fence.

Why is it uncivil to require you to be honest and accountable?
"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 Omen

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The answer is no.  I give up.  I accept defeat.  You win.  You've outsmarted me at every turn.  I will not again attempt to inform anyone here of my religious beliefs for the little while longer I am here.  If someone would like to ask me a question because they genuinly want to know my answer then they can do so in PM.  I'm just thankful I'm still smart enough to wipe my butt.

So all you ever wanted was a one sided conversation, where you never have to be responsible for what you claim and are allowed to just make up whatever you wish whenever you wish?

Why would anyone believe you to be an authority on anything?
"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 Omen

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It's not about winning or losing. It's about ideas. We're just waiting for you to actually present some of value.

I'm getting sick of this shit of being accused of acting 'uncivil' just because I ask him to be honest and up front.
"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 Jstwebbrowsing

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It's not about winning or losing. It's about ideas. We're just waiting for you to actually present some of value.

I am not convinced of this.  I'm fully convinced that if I stated the grass is green that someone would argue with me.

I evidently can't even convincingly state that I'm not a Christian.  Now how this is even humanly possible that I can say I am not a Christian, not do the good things Christians are supposed to do, and yet still be a Christian is far beyond my understanding, but this is the case.  Do you think I could get one of you guys to argue this case with God for me?  Because I don't think he thinks I'm a Christian.
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 Omen

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It's not about winning or losing. It's about ideas. We're just waiting for you to actually present some of value.

I am not convinced of this.  I'm fully convin..

What is stopping you from answering the dozens of questions in this thread, from multiple people asking you for one simple solitary thing.. that should be your responsibility from the very beginning?

Can you actually answer this question, without making up an excuse to avoid responsibility?
"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 Jstwebbrowsing

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It's not about winning or losing. It's about ideas. We're just waiting for you to actually present some of value.

I am not convinced of this.  I'm fully convin..

What is stopping you from answering the dozens of questions in this thread, from multiple people asking you for one simple solitary thing.. that should be your responsibility from the very beginning?

Can you actually answer this question, without making up an excuse to avoid responsibility?

I just don't think there will be any good comes from such a conversation, but I'm not so sure nothing bad will come from it.  While I think some of you are partly to blame, I mostly blame myself.  I am not a Christian and I should not be speaking for one.  The only thing that I can see that has come from my conversations are hostilities.

And I can't help but think that if I had obeyed the Bible none of this would have resulted.  Aside from the fact that I should not be here, if only because my faith is weak, I should not have proceeded to speak for a Christian because this too is what I have learned from the Bible I should not do.  If I had obeyed either of those two things then there would be no hostilities here with me and I would not have added to anyone's hostility toward God.

So I am repenting.
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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I don't want to be like those that burned witches.
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 Omen

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I just don't think there will be any good comes from such a conversation, but I'm not so sure nothing bad will come from it.  While I think some of you are partly to blame, I mostly blame myself.  I am not a Christian and I should not be speaking for one.  The only thing that I can see that has come from my conversations are hostilities.

Have you considered that this fear of yours is linked to how you feel about whether or not your beliefs are warranted?

What is the worse that could happen, you could be wrong?  I'm wrong about a million things a day, my wife tells me all about it all the damn time.
"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 Jstwebbrowsing

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I just don't think there will be any good comes from such a conversation, but I'm not so sure nothing bad will come from it.  While I think some of you are partly to blame, I mostly blame myself.  I am not a Christian and I should not be speaking for one.  The only thing that I can see that has come from my conversations are hostilities.

Have you considered that this fear of yours is linked to how you feel about whether or not your beliefs are warranted?

Yes I have.  Contrary to popular belief everything that I have learned about religion has been since adulthood.  And my particular beliefs on not celebrating holidays and not participating in warfare and that there is no burning hell are quite unpopular with my family.  So I have not adopted these beliefs through peer pressure.  In fact, it is quite the opposite.

And I haven't accepted the beliefs at face value.  I chose Jehovah's Witness because the way they interpret the Bible it does no contradict itself, at least not in my mind.  I am, however, not qualifed to become a baptized member.

Among other things I smoke cigarettes.  Now I would prefer to believe as some Christians do that smoking can be okay.  This would be better for me.  But I simply don't see that the Bible teaches it is okay. 

Everything I see in the Bible, such as I should not smoke, seems to be for my own good.  So I see no need to reject these teachings as being bad.
« Last Edit: May 11, 2012, 11:06:14 PM by Jstwebbrowsing »
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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Oh, and it also does not contradict science as far as I am aware.
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 Zankuu

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Everything I see in the Bible, such as I should not smoke, seems to be for my own good.  So I see no need to reject these teachings as being bad.

I won't argue that there aren't great, moral verses to be found within the Bible, because there are...

Deuteronomy 15:7
If there be among you a poor man of one of thy brethren within any of thy gates in thy land which the Lord thy God giveth thee, thou shalt not harden thine heart, nor shut thine hand from thy poor brother.

...but I'm not going to shield my eyes and pretend the ugly and savage scripture isn't there.

Deuteronomy 25:11-12
If two men are fighting and the wife of one of them comes to rescue her husband from his assailant, and she reaches out and seizes him by his private parts, you shall cut off her hand. Show her no pity.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline Alzael

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Oh, and it also does not contradict science as far as I am aware.

Then obviously you didn't read it. You said this before in the other thread where you asked where Genesis contradicted science. I told you exactly the ways in which it contradicts science.

Not to mention the flood, which we have gone over before, utterly contradicts science. It does actually contradict science as far as you are aware, you're lying. You've been shown several times how it contradicts science. The same with evolution and the Big Bang Theory.

I chose Jehovah's Witness because the way they interpret the Bible it does no contradict itself, at least not in my mind.

Much as in the way it didn't contradict science?

Ok sure, so if it doesn't contradict itself why are there two different genesis accounts? Did Noah take two of every animal, or seven? Was Abijam mothers Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom, or Michaiah the daughter of Uriel? Were the animals formed from the Water or the Ground? How many days was it before Jesus ascended into heaven? I could go on for quite a while.......
"I drank what?!"- Socrates

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Offline Graybeard

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The only reason I have stuck it out this long is in hopes that at least some are open to new ideas about Christianity.
There are no "new ideas" in Christianity. If it is in the Bible, it is "of God." If it is not in the Bible it is lies and "of Satan."

Ecc 1:9 The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

Re:22:18: For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
Re:22:19: And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.


The most perfect understanding of Christianity (if you accept the Bible) must have been a few days after Jesus ascended to heaven. At that time, the Apostles had 100% knowledge. There could be no more knowledge as the "Teacher" was dead.

Over the years, people came to see that many things in the Bible were garbage, savage, immoral, stupid, tedious, expensive, irrational, etc.

At this stage, like many religions before and since, Christianity should have done the decent thing and died, but no... there was big money in religion... read on ->

The Church then organised various deep-thinkers (or as we say, Snake-Oil Salesmen) to try and explain the inexplicable. If Jesus had wanted this to happen, He would have given us all the information we needed and he would not have inspired people to write lies for Him.

St Augustine realised that apologists were not progressing the Faith - they were saying stupid things and making things up as they went along: (A long quote, but I hope it helps:)

Quote
Saint Augustine (A.D. 354-430) in his work The Literal Meaning of Genesis (De Genesi ad litteram libri duodecim) provided excellent advice for all Christians who are faced with the task of interpreting Scripture in the light of scientific knowledge. This translation is by J. H. Taylor in Ancient Christian Writers, Newman Press, 1982, volume 41.

Usually, even a non-Christian knows something about the earth, the heavens, and the other elements of this world, about the motion and orbit of the stars and even their size and relative positions, about the predictable eclipses of the sun and moon, the cycles of the years and the seasons, about the kinds of animals, shrubs, stones, and so forth, and this knowledge he hold to as being certain from reason and experience.

"Now, it is a disgraceful and dangerous thing for an infidel to hear a Christian, presumably giving the meaning of Holy Scripture, talking nonsense on these topics; and we should take all means to prevent such an embarrassing situation, in which people show up vast ignorance in a Christian and laugh it to scorn. The shame is not so much that an ignorant individual is derided, but that people outside the household of faith think our sacred writers held such opinions, and, to the great loss of those for whose salvation we toil, the writers of our Scripture are criticized and rejected as unlearned men. If they find a Christian mistaken in a field which they themselves know well and hear him maintaining his foolish opinions about our books, how are they going to believe those books in matters concerning the resurrection of the dead, the hope of eternal life, and the kingdom of heaven, when they think their pages are full of falsehoods and on facts which they themselves have learnt from experience and the light of reason?

Reckless and incompetent expounders of Holy Scripture bring untold trouble and sorrow on their wiser brethren when they are caught in one of their mischievous false opinions and are taken to task by those who are not bound by the authority of our sacred books. For then, to defend their utterly foolish and obviously untrue statements, they will try to call upon Holy Scripture for proof and even recite from memory many passages which they think support their position, although they understand neither what they say nor the things about which they make assertion."

So, as you see, there are no new ideas.

I hope this helps.
« Last Edit: May 13, 2012, 06:50:00 PM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Omen

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And I haven't accepted the beliefs at face value.

You haven't yet described a means that which you came to belief that hasn't been at a minimum superficial and at an absurd degree dishonest to the extreme.  When you actively work to avoid the burden of proof for your own claims, rationalize towards your own dishonest presuppositions, and intentionally obfuscate conversations - it is not something that suggests that you've arrived to your beliefs through reasonable examination.

Quote
I chose Jehovah's Witness because the way they interpret the Bible it does no contradict itself,

You have systematically avoided contradictions pointed out to you, responding with incredulous denials, red herrings, and pleading fallacies.  Literally inserting arbitrary ideas to rationalize it away, rather than answer it.

Quote
no need to reject these teachings as being bad.

This has nothing to do wiht establishing the validity of biblical claims.  This is purely circular reasoning based on a subjective projection of god as yourself and you're agreeing with yourself.
"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 Omen

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Oh, and it also does not contradict science as far as I am aware.

I smited you for this because you can't possibly make this statement without knowing that you're lying right to our faces.  You started a thread, where you openly lied about scientific subjects while at the same insisting that you had researched them.  You delivered a polemical apologetic appeal, presenting scientific conclusions on the opposite of your own assumed religious conclusions.

You can't be more anti-science then you already.
"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 MadBunny

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It's my experience that atheists generally know more about Christianity than Christians do.

On top of that, like the cherry on top of a banana split, an arrow to the knee, or frosting on cake we also tend to be more aware of fallacious arguments as well.  Kalaam,[1] St. Anselms, Pascals, so called 'Intelligent Design' and so forth.  It is these powerfully stupid arguments that led me to my 'so I used to be an atheist' posting a short while back.

As a rule, most Christians that I know can't even really get past the 'ignostic'[2] threshold. 

That doesn't really surprise me though.  I've long held that to be in a position to argue a point most effectively one must be able to at least functionally understand the counterpoint arguments.  I have zero doubt that members like Graybeard, Omen, or DeathOverLife could easily argue *for* any number of Christian subjects reasonably effectively.  Heck I can; but I try to make a point of not winning arguments that have a net deleterious effect.

I guess the point I'm making is that most Christians are not going to even understand the question posed in the OP without some kind of preface or education on the topic of logical thinking.
 1. one of my favorite actually
 2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ignosticism
Give a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a night.  Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

Offline MadBunny

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Yes I have.  Contrary to popular belief everything that I have learned about religion has been since adulthood.  And my particular beliefs on not celebrating holidays and not participating in warfare and that there is no burning hell are quite unpopular with my family.  So I have not adopted these beliefs through peer pressure.  In fact, it is quite the opposite.

And I haven't accepted the beliefs at face value.  I chose Jehovah's Witness because the way they interpret the Bible it does no contradict itself, at least not in my mind.  I am, however, not qualifed to become a baptized member.

Among other things I smoke cigarettes.  Now I would prefer to believe as some Christians do that smoking can be okay.  This would be better for me.  But I simply don't see that the Bible teaches it is okay. 

Everything I see in the Bible, such as I should not smoke, seems to be for my own good.  So I see no need to reject these teachings as being bad.

I may have missed it elsewhere Jstwebbrowsing, but do you define yourself as a Christian, or simply as 'religious'?

Give a man a fire, and he'll be warm for a night.  Set a man on fire and he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

Offline screwtape

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I may have missed it elsewhere Jstwebbrowsing, but do you define yourself as a Christian, or simply as 'religious'?

informal jehovah's witness
Links:
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Guides & Tutorials

What's true is already so. Owning up to it does not make it worse.

Offline Omen

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I may have missed it elsewhere Jstwebbrowsing, but do you define yourself as a Christian, or simply as 'religious'?

Jehova witness, but it also changes whenever he needs to equivocate or refuse to respond.

Case in point: Earlier fool blown creationist nonsense, then suddenly science agrees with the bible!
"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