Author Topic: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?  (Read 37004 times)

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Offline Prejah

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #377 on: October 17, 2013, 07:00:07 PM »
Not true! A woman is not permitted to divorce her husband, only the husband can divorce from his wife.

Read the damn Bible, you obviously haven't.

-Nam

Please post the exact passage you are referring to. We will then analyze it in the proper context of the whole chapter.

No. Not because it isn't there but because you're just going to make excuses for it. That's all you do. That and call us "illiterate", and frankly you call me or anyone else here that again, I'm going to let loose on you. I don't have a "Watched" because I'm a nice guy. I have it there because I'm the direct opposite.

What I will do, however, is give you the chapter/verse and you can actually crack open your precious book that you obviously have never read (because if you had, you'd know that verse).

1 Corinthians 7:39.

By the by, when divorce is mentioned in the Bible, it is always about the husband divorcing the wife, not the other way around.

-Nam

What bible version are you reading where passage 7-39 deals with divorce. Mine does not (NIV) Even the KJ does not use those words in that verse. Perhaps you can clarify further? Excuses are not on the forefront, but we seem to be talking about two different verses. In fact earlier in that particular chapter it mentions divorce and indeed says a woman can divorce a man. Not sure where you are getting the other things from-which is why I inquired about what particular bible you are reading from (or most likely not reading)

Just for clarity, every Christian does not have the bible memorized verbatim. I'm sure skeptic guessed you were talking about 1 Corinthians, but he was asking for clarity, as am I.

Cheers

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #378 on: October 17, 2013, 07:01:24 PM »
Hey, Skep....
can you run over to my house this weekend and drive off some demon-deceived-Catholics who also happen to be my in-laws?  You cannot come in the house (cuz you is scary), but I'll send them out on the front lawn, ok?  Have at 'em, I can smell the sulfur!

lol I am not scared of Catholics. I said I have no fear.

What I would tell them is that "the leaders of your church are worshiping Satan and tricking you into thinking it's Jesus. Look up the satanic symbols all over the Vatican and priest's garments. It's best to get out and leave the false doctrine."

I have nothing against the followers of the religions. Like I said, I can only be the messenger.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Angus and Alexis

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #379 on: October 17, 2013, 07:05:21 PM »
I have nothing against the followers of the religions. Like I said, I can only be the messenger.

Buuuuuuuuuuuut, the messenger of a false god?

Or the "One true Godtm"?
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Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #380 on: October 17, 2013, 07:12:26 PM »
I imagine dangerous people do not like being called dangerous.

Let me be clear: you are willing to absconce any personal responsibility for ethical decisions based upon the whims of an objectively unverifiable willful entity.  Remember the whole 'I'd kill my kid if god told me to' bulls**t?  THAT MAKES YOU A MONSTER.  YOU WOULD KILL YOUR OWN KID TO SAVE YOUR OWN A$$ OR PLACATE THE WHIMS OF SOME OTHER ENTITY.



OK, I am seeing that we seem to have a bit of a misunderstanding. No problem with misunderstandings. I can clarify why you are having a misunderstanding.

The child is not my child. The child is God's child. If God tells me to give give Him one of his children, then I will. I will never kill one of God's children on my own. No way.

We all deserve forgiveness. I love murderers in a spiritual sense. "Hate the sin, love the sinner" is the common phrase. I hate what they are doing, but I love them anyway. Hopefully, they can become right with the Lord before they die. No one is beyond redemption.

I do not see how this type of pure love can be seen as dangerous. Once you get the materialistic thinking out of the way and focus on the spiritual, it becomes easier to see it form our point of view.

I hope this helps to clear up the misunderstanding.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #381 on: October 17, 2013, 07:32:58 PM »
Atheism never offered me anything either.
Atheism isn't about offering anything, it is simply a lack of belief as you should well know claiming to be a former one.
Religions claim to offer things however I have yet to see anything in the world that would give the smallest amount of credibility to this.
Please feel free to show us all something........not a quote from a book.

Fair enough. it was the lack of belief that didn't offer me anything then. It was depressing. Much happier now as a believer. It's like my eyes were opened.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #382 on: October 17, 2013, 07:36:40 PM »
I have nothing against the followers of the religions. Like I said, I can only be the messenger.

Buuuuuuuuuuuut, the messenger of a false god?

Or the "One true Godtm"?

Yahweh has shown His power over the false gods.
Nobody has ever shown power over Yahweh. The false demons that tried, failed.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #383 on: October 17, 2013, 07:56:46 PM »
Buuuuuuuuuuuut, the messenger of a false god?

Or the "One true Godtm"?

I will let Jesus answer your question:

Matthew 12:
22 Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute, and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see. 23 All the people were astonished and said, “Could this be the Son of David?”

24 But when the Pharisees heard this, they said, “It is only by Beelzebul, the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons.”

25 Jesus knew their thoughts and said to them, “Every kingdom divided against itself will be ruined, and every city or household divided against itself will not stand. 26 If Satan drives out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then can his kingdom stand? 27 And if I drive out demons by Beelzebul, by whom do your people drive them out? So then, they will be your judges. 28 But if it is by the Spirit of God that I drive out demons, then the kingdom of God has come upon you.

As you can see, it is not possible that God is a false god. Jesus squashed this myth 2,000 years ago.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #384 on: October 17, 2013, 08:12:15 PM »
[Yahweh has shown His power over the false gods.
Nobody has ever shown power over Yahweh. The false demons that tried, failed.
I am disappointed by your argument.

The main dissatisfaction is that, for the above to be true, (i) the Bible needs to be inerrant. It isn't, we know it isn't. (ii) You cannot presuppose that there are gods.

But that aside, let us look at the defeat of the god called Yahweh by the god called Chemosh:

1Ki:11:33: Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in mine eyes, and to keep my statutes and my judgments, as did David his father.

Human Sacrifice The King of Moab.
2Ki:3:25: And they beat down the cities, and on every good piece of land cast every man his stone, and filled it; and they stopped all the wells of water, and felled all the good trees: only in Kir-haraseth left they the stones thereof; howbeit the slingers went about it, and smote it.
2Ki:3:26: And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too sore for him, he took with him seven hundred men that drew swords, to break through even unto the king of Edom: but they could not.
2Ki:3:27: Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall.  And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.


This event is also recorded on the Mesha SteleWiki

It records the campaign that took place between 848 and 841 BC, the only time when Joram and Jehoshaphat were both on the throne. Although the Israelite campaign met with some success, it appears that Moab retained its independence. This is confirmed by the Mesha Inscription.

The point is that here, a human sacrifice was made to Chemosh and the armies of Israel, commanded by God, retreated. At least that is the version that the Israelites would like you to believe.

But now you need to go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mesha_Stele#Text and read what a powerful god Chemosh is and how the possible human sacrifice was not done in the face of the Israelites if it were done at all.

I will not go into the instances of human sacrifice to God in the Bible but, this was obviously "powerful magic" to the Israelites that truly worried them[1], and thus we have, as the final act of a desperate god, the folk tale of the crucifixion - a god sacrificing his son.

However, this imaginary crucifixion, when looked at logically, can result in only two conclusions:

Jesus was God as well and therefore could not die.
Jesus was not god but some wandering zealot who ended up dead.

As you won't like the second, I will remind you that gods cannot die and therefore there was no sacrifice.
 1. Today we see it in its proper light as the work of a criminal lunatic
« Last Edit: October 17, 2013, 08:16:24 PM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Nam

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #385 on: October 17, 2013, 08:17:01 PM »
Not true! A woman is not permitted to divorce her husband, only the husband can divorce from his wife.

Read the damn Bible, you obviously haven't.

-Nam

Please post the exact passage you are referring to. We will then analyze it in the proper context of the whole chapter.

No. Not because it isn't there but because you're just going to make excuses for it. That's all you do. That and call us "illiterate", and frankly you call me or anyone else here that again, I'm going to let loose on you. I don't have a "Watched" because I'm a nice guy. I have it there because I'm the direct opposite.

What I will do, however, is give you the chapter/verse and you can actually crack open your precious book that you obviously have never read (because if you had, you'd know that verse).

1 Corinthians 7:39.

By the by, when divorce is mentioned in the Bible, it is always about the husband divorcing the wife, not the other way around.

-Nam

What bible version are you reading where passage 7-39 deals with divorce. Mine does not (NIV) Even the KJ does not use those words in that verse. Perhaps you can clarify further? Excuses are not on the forefront, but we seem to be talking about two different verses. In fact earlier in that particular chapter it mentions divorce and indeed says a woman can divorce a man. Not sure where you are getting the other things from-which is why I inquired about what particular bible you are reading from (or most likely not reading)

Just for clarity, every Christian does not have the bible memorized verbatim. I'm sure skeptic guessed you were talking about 1 Corinthians, but he was asking for clarity, as am I.

Cheers

Chapter 7 talks about the do's and don'ts of marriage. What men can do, and what women can't. It states that a man can divorce a woman (never mentions a wife can divorce her husband), and that verse states that even in divorce she belongs to him. So, he can remarry but she can't or she will become and adulterer. She can only remarry if her husband (ex or otherwise) dies.

Once she marries him she is, basically, his property for life, even in divorce. The whole chapter is about marriage and divorce how you think it is not is baffling.

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #386 on: October 17, 2013, 08:21:47 PM »
[Yahweh has shown His power over the false gods.
Nobody has ever shown power over Yahweh. The false demons that tried, failed.
I am disappointed by your argument.

The main dissatisfaction is that, for the above to be true, (i) the Bible needs to be inerrant. It isn't, we know it isn't. (ii) You cannot presuppose that there are gods.

But that aside, let us look at the defeat of the god called Yahweh by the god called Chemosh:

1Ki:11:33: Because that they have forsaken me, and have worshipped Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, Chemosh the god of the Moabites, and Milcom the god of the children of Ammon, and have not walked in my ways, to do that which is right in mine eyes, and to keep my statutes and my judgments, as did David his father.

Human Sacrifice The King of Moab.
2Ki:3:25: And they beat down the cities, and on every good piece of land cast every man his stone, and filled it; and they stopped all the wells of water, and felled all the good trees: only in Kir-haraseth left they the stones thereof; howbeit the slingers went about it, and smote it.
2Ki:3:26: And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too sore for him, he took with him seven hundred men that drew swords, to break through even unto the king of Edom: but they could not.
2Ki:3:27: Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall.  And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.


This event is also recorded on the Mesha SteleWiki

It records the campaign that took place between 848 and 841 BC, the only time when Joram and Jehoshaphat were both on the throne. Although the Israelite campaign met with some success, it appears that Moab retained its independence. This is confirmed by the Mesha Inscription.

The point is that here, a human sacrifice was made to Chemosh and the armies of Israel, commanded by God, retreated. At least that is the version that the Israelites would like you to believe.

But now you need to go to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mesha_Stele#Text and read what a powerful god Chemosh is and how the possible human sacrifice was not done in the face of the Israelites if it were done at all.

I will not go into the instances of human sacrifice to God in the Bible but, this was obviously "powerful magic" to the Israelites that truly worried them[1], and thus we have, as the final act of a desperate god, the folk tale of the crucifixion - a god sacrificing his son.

However, this imaginary crucifixion, when looked at logically, can result in only two conclusions:

Jesus was God as well and therefore could not die.
Jesus was not god but some wandering zealot who ended up dead.

As you won't like the second, I will remind you that gods cannot die and therefore there was no sacrifice.
 1. Today we see it in its proper light as the work of a criminal lunatic

I am not following the power this god showed over Yahweh.
Can you explain your question/point? I'm not seeing it.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Zankuu

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #387 on: October 17, 2013, 08:24:40 PM »
skeptic54768, this might end up being a lengthy reply but there’s just so much I disagree with you on. I hope you find this reply reasonable.

1. ON ANIMAL SACRIFICE
“With that said, I would like to say that Jesus' sacrifice was important because He willingly did it. That is the ultimate act of love.” - skeptic54768

If Jesus is God (John 1:1-1-14), the creator of all things, and God is all knowing (Isaiah 46:9) then the entire plan is asinine, sacrifice and all. Seriously, Jesus’ sacrifice means nothing if the sacrifice is to and for himself.

If God has the attributes of being all powerful, all knowing, and has the ability to foresee the future, are you telling me that the best he could come up with is a plan which involves designing purposely flawed creations (man, woman, and the snake), temporarily leaving and setting up the perfect opportunity for man to be tricked, eventually drowning his flawed creations and regretting it, then eventually sacrificing himself to himself so his creations can be spared the eternal torture? It just doesn’t make any sense. Why not skip the whole dramatic flood event and get straight to sacrificing himself? Or better yet, why not just forgive without the sacrifice?

“In the Old Testament, blood of an innocent lamb was used on the door's of the Hebrews. This represented how an innocent animal must be sacrificed to atone for sins.” - skeptic54768

Animal sacrifice…I don’t even know where to start. I guess this is what I want to know first- how does slitting an animal’s carotid artery and having its blood spill out translate over to atonement? Really, please explain the mechanism behind the forgiveness. How does it work? Why does an innocent animal have to be involved? Saying that something clean is needed in order to be used to redeem the dirty doesn’t explain anything. That’s just a subjective rule of forgiveness a god created. What is Yahweh’s obsession with innocent blood? And he isn’t the only god of antiquity that’s obsessed with blood sacrifice:
  • Kisin, the Mayan god of death required blood sacrifices.
  • Tezcatlipoca, an Aztec god required sacrifices for atonement.
  • Jupiter, a Roman god, was calmed by the spilling of chicken and cow blood.
  • The Sumerian gods accepted animal sacrifice in order to keep the peace.
  • Greek gods were fans of the entrails, lard, and spices.
  • Germanic gods were appeased by animal sacrifices.
  • The list goes on and on...

So tell me something, 54768, how is your god any different when it comes to animal bloodshed? You claim that these other gods were just demons in disguise, but honestly, I can’t tell your god Yahweh apart from Kisin, El, Thor, Marduk, Jupiter, Zeus, or Tezcatlipoca. To bring it full circle, you said that Jesus’ sacrifice to himself for humanity’s sake was the ultimate act of love. An ultimate act of love would not require a sacrifice in the first place. If you want to forgive someone then you just forgive that person with no strings attached. Let’s say I wronged you, 54768, and you decided to lovingly forgive me. What would be more loving and forgiving: 1) simply forgiving me or 2) having me slit the neck of the nearest pigeon and splash its blood on a park bench, or 3) crucifying 54768 Jr. on my behalf?

Any sane person (or deity) would go with #1.

The sacrificial lamb plan is not a plan I would expect from an intelligent moral agent. I sincerely mean that.

2. ON SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES
“I had a spiritual experience with God. […] Many people around the world always claim to spiritually experience God […]” - skeptic54768

Spiritual experiences are a dime a dozen and aren’t convincing. The problem is people say they have spiritual experiences with gods other than yours, and they use these experiences to claim their god is real, just like you do. Muslims saw angels, Hindus saw and became one with Brahman through meditation, et cetera et cetera et cetera- there are millions of these accounts and they aren’t any more or less convincing than Christian experiences.

Your friend saw a flaming cross in front of his face while he read the Bible? So what? There are countless Muslim testimonies on the internet with nearly identical stories: they were reading the Koran and had a spiritual experience while reading it (saw the word Allah spelt out, felt Allah’s warm glow, saw the face of Muhammad). You wouldn’t take any of that as proof the Koran is true, so why would you take your friend’s story as evidence the Bible is true? Your societal bias is showing.

3. ON YAHWEH’S IMMORALITY
“The firstborn were killed by God because Pharaoh killed the firstborn males of the Hebrews. What should God have done about that?” - skeptic54768

How about not murder the Egyptian firstborns? I would have expected a benevolent being with ultimate intelligence to have educated the Pharaoh. If you were God what would you have done? If you tell me you also would have started slaughtered innocent people then you need to check yourself in to a hospital, because you’re a sociopath. And you may very well say “Sure I would!” in order to make excuses for Yahweh, but I doubt you would order the mutilation of children like he does, or for that matter, carry it out like Moses and his army does in the book.

You also have to deal with the problem that this was all God’s plan from the start. He designed the Pharaoh in such a way that he would kill the Hebrew’s firstborn males. He knew he was going to get his own rocks off getting revenge by killing innocent Egyptians. Why? Because he planned it “In the Beginning…” If God didn’t want to slaughter children then he simply wouldn’t slaughter children. That’s sort of the perk of being a god, you get to make the rules.

“Even today imagine if someone witnessed their own baby murdered right in front of them by someone. I can't even imagine what they would do in retaliation.” - skeptic54768

If my child was murdered in front of me the last thing I would do is grab a kitchen knife and murder someone else’s child. The length you’re going to in order to justify Yahweh murdering innocent children is impressive. You’re so afraid of questioning Yahweh you’re willing to create loopholes so he gets a free pass on things you find deplorable.

But I have been the Lord your God ever since you came out of Egypt. You shall acknowledge no God but me, no Savior except me. […] The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open. –Hosea 13:4-16

So Yahweh sends an army to murder children and gut pregnant women. But God knows best right? Those unborn children were God’s anyway. He can spill as many fetuses and placentas in the dirt as often as he wants, because Yahweh's got that ultimate love, right? That’s quite a loophole for barbarism.

4. ON BELIEFS AND ATHEISM
Here are the reasons you’ve presented for your past atheism:
  • You thought god-belief was silly. (You haven’t explained why.)
  • You thought people that believed in god were stupid. (You haven’t explained why.)
  • You thought you were smarter than god-believers. (You haven’t explained why.)
And here are the reasons you presented for your conversion to Christianity:
  • Biblical predictions seem to have come true.
  • The state of the existence prior to the Big Bang isn’t fully understood.
  • Your friend saw a burning cross.
  • Prayers were answered ambiguously.
  • An argumentum ad populum: If many believe so, it is so.

You haven’t elaborated on why you were an atheist, but from what you’ve typed you had poor reasons for being an atheist then, and you have poor reasons for being a Christian now. I believe there have been many atheist to Christian conversions. But the reason why many atheists don’t believe them is because their reasons for being an atheist are bad reasons, and not based on rational and critical thought. We always hear “I was big into drugs and I just wanted to sin” or “I was angry with God” and these are truly poor reasons to not believe in the supernatural. Now if you had said, “One reason I was an atheist was due to the fact that Yahweh existed as a pagan Canaanite god prior to being the god of Israel,” then that would have been a good reason for nonbelief in Yahweh. Do you see my concern about your reasons for your past disbelief?

“Plenty of people think they are worshiping God, but they are following a false religion. Since I am not following a false religion, I am not one of those people that the verse is speaking about.” –skeptic54768

You haven’t explained how you know you aren’t following a false religion. If the holy book of the religion you follow says it isn’t a false religion, you’re using circular reasoning for support. For example:

Believer: "I’m not following a false religion."
Nonbeliever: "How do you know?"
Believer: "Because the Bible says so."
Nonbeliever: "Why should I believe the Bible?"
Believer: "Because the Bible says all other religions are false. Therefore, I’m not following a false religion.”

See why circular reasoning is considered illogical? Plus, this sort of argument can be used to support any religion.

5. ON PROPHECIES
“I know the Bible is true because of all the prophecies coming true.” - skeptic54768

Biblical prophecy isn’t the least bit convincing. Since you mentioned the prophecy involving the destruction of the Holy Temple, I’ll use that as an example. Here's Jesus' prediction in Mark 13:1-4:

As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!” “Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John and Andrew asked him privately, 4 “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?”

Let's ask ourselves the following:

When did the Siege of Jerusalem take place? 70CE.
When was the Gospel of Mark written? No earlier than 70CE.

Case closed.

So we have an unknown author living during the Roman-Jewish War (which involved the destruction of the Holy Temple) that wrote about a man that supposedly predicted the destruction of the Holy Temple. Let that sink in for a minute, then you'll understand why this Biblical prophecy isn’t convincing to nonbelievers and skeptics. But! But the passage is written in present tense! If the temple was already destroyed, why would the author of Mark write it in such a way!? Isn’t it obvious, skeptic54768? The author of Mark is a Christian. He's hardly unbiased and he’s writing a story about Jesus 70-80 years after Jesus’ death. One can conclude that the author wrote it this way to ensure that Jesus’ "prediction" came true.
 
6. ON WOMEN AND SLAVERY
“The Bible says that everyone is equal. This is in contrast with other faiths who think some people are superior, like Islam. Women are treated terribly in Islam, but given free choices in Christianity.” - skeptic54768

When Christians say things like this it makes me wonder if they’ve actually read their own Bible, or studied Christianity’s past. Or know anything about the history of women’s rights. You do realize it’s a relatively new development (18-19th century), right? And here a sample of Biblical equality:

Old Testament:
If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father.  Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.  –Deut. 22:28-29

New Testament:
Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. -1 Cor. 14:34–35

Those are just off the top of my head. There are many more verses that go into detail about how you should chop off the hand of a woman that attempts to stop a fight between two men, how women are treated like property and spoils of war, and how a rapist can force a rape victim to marry him. Much of this is from God’s holy mouth. So I really don’t care what Jesus supposedly said about woman and equality, because it only makes God seem like a flip-flopper on the issue, and Christians certainly didn’t interpret the Bible the way you are for thousands of years. Isn’t it funny that when the moral values in a society change that God’s values suddenly change? SPAG at it's finest.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline Nam

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #388 on: October 17, 2013, 08:24:43 PM »
Skeptic,

Graybeard is being elegant in saying: READ THE DAMN BIBLE FOR ONCE!

Okay, maybe not. But I am.

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #389 on: October 17, 2013, 08:51:38 PM »
Animal sacrifice…I don’t even know where to start. I guess this is what I want to know first- how does slitting an animal’s carotid artery and having its blood spill out translate over to atonement? Really, please explain the mechanism behind the forgiveness. How does it work? Why does an innocent animal have to be involved? Saying that something clean is needed in order to be used to redeem the dirty doesn’t explain anything. That’s just a subjective rule of forgiveness a god created. What is Yahweh’s obsession with innocent blood? And he isn’t the only god of antiquity that’s obsessed with blood sacrifice:
  • Kisin, the Mayan god of death required blood sacrifices.
  • Tezcatlipoca, an Aztec god required sacrifices for atonement.
  • Jupiter, a Roman god, was calmed by the spilling of chicken and cow blood.
  • The Sumerian gods accepted animal sacrifice in order to keep the peace.
  • Greek gods were fans of the entrails, lard, and spices.
  • Germanic gods were appeased by animal sacrifices.
  • The list goes on and on...

So tell me something, 54768, how is your god any different when it comes to animal bloodshed? You claim that these other gods were just demons in disguise, but honestly, I can’t tell your god Yahweh apart from Kisin, El, Thor, Marduk, Jupiter, Zeus, or Tezcatlipoca. To bring it full circle, you said that Jesus’ sacrifice to himself for humanity’s sake was the ultimate act of love. An ultimate act of love would not require a sacrifice in the first place. If you want to forgive someone then you just forgive that person with no strings attached. Let’s say I wronged you, 54768, and you decided to lovingly forgive me. What would be more loving and forgiving: 1) simply forgiving me or 2) having me slit the neck of the nearest pigeon and splash its blood on a park bench, or 3) crucifying 54768 Jr. on my behalf?

Any sane person (or deity) would go with #1.

The sacrificial lamb plan is not a plan I would expect from an intelligent moral agent. I sincerely mean that.

2. ON SPIRITUAL EXPERIENCES
“I had a spiritual experience with God. […] Many people around the world always claim to spiritually experience God […]” - skeptic54768

Spiritual experiences are a dime a dozen and aren’t convincing. The problem is people say they have spiritual experiences with gods other than yours, and they use these experiences to claim their god is real, just like you do. Muslims saw angels, Hindus saw and became one with Brahman through meditation, et cetera et cetera et cetera- there are millions of these accounts and they aren’t any more or less convincing than Christian experiences.

Your friend saw a flaming cross in front of his face while he read the Bible? So what? There are countless Muslim testimonies on the internet with nearly identical stories: they were reading the Koran and had a spiritual experience while reading it (saw the word Allah spelt out, felt Allah’s warm glow, saw the face of Muhammad). You wouldn’t take any of that as proof the Koran is true, so why would you take your friend’s story as evidence the Bible is true? Your societal bias is showing.

3. ON YAHWEH’S IMMORALITY
“The firstborn were killed by God because Pharaoh killed the firstborn males of the Hebrews. What should God have done about that?” - skeptic54768

How about not murder the Egyptian firstborns? I would have expected a benevolent being with ultimate intelligence to have educated the Pharaoh. If you were God what would you have done? If you tell me you also would have started slaughtered innocent people then you need to check yourself in to a hospital, because you’re a sociopath. And you may very well say “Sure I would!” in order to make excuses for Yahweh, but I doubt you would order the mutilation of children like he does, or for that matter, carry it out like Moses and his army does in the book.

You also have to deal with the problem that this was all God’s plan from the start. He designed the Pharaoh in such a way that he would kill the Hebrew’s firstborn males. He knew he was going to get his own rocks off getting revenge by killing innocent Egyptians. Why? Because he planned it “In the Beginning…” If God didn’t want to slaughter children then he simply wouldn’t slaughter children. That’s sort of the perk of being a god, you get to make the rules.

“Even today imagine if someone witnessed their own baby murdered right in front of them by someone. I can't even imagine what they would do in retaliation.” - skeptic54768

If my child was murdered in front of me the last thing I would do is grab a kitchen knife and murder someone else’s child. The length you’re going to in order to justify Yahweh murdering innocent children is impressive. You’re so afraid of questioning Yahweh you’re willing to create loopholes so he gets a free pass on things you find deplorable.

But I have been the Lord your God ever since you came out of Egypt. You shall acknowledge no God but me, no Savior except me. […] The people of Samaria must bear their guilt, because they have rebelled against their God. They will fall by the sword; their little ones will be dashed to the ground, their pregnant women ripped open. –Hosea 13:4-16

So Yahweh sends an army to murder children and gut pregnant women. But God knows best right? Those unborn children were God’s anyway. He can spill as many fetuses and placentas in the dirt as often as he wants, because Yahweh's got that ultimate love, right? That’s quite a loophole for barbarism.

4. ON BELIEFS AND ATHEISM
Here are the reasons you’ve presented for your past atheism:
  • You thought god-belief was silly. (You haven’t explained why.)
  • You thought people that believed in god were stupid. (You haven’t explained why.)
  • You thought you were smarter than god-believers. (You haven’t explained why.)
And here are the reasons you presented for your conversion to Christianity:
  • Biblical predictions seem to have come true.
  • The state of the existence prior to the Big Bang isn’t fully understood.
  • Your friend saw a burning cross.
  • Prayers were answered ambiguously.
  • An argumentum ad populum: If many believe so, it is so.

You haven’t elaborated on why you were an atheist, but from what you’ve typed you had poor reasons for being an atheist then, and you have poor reasons for being a Christian now. I believe there have been many atheist to Christian conversions. But the reason why many atheists don’t believe them is because their reasons for being an atheist are bad reasons, and not based on rational and critical thought. We always hear “I was big into drugs and I just wanted to sin” or “I was angry with God” and these are truly poor reasons to not believe in the supernatural. Now if you had said, “One reason I was an atheist was due to the fact that Yahweh existed as a pagan Canaanite god prior to being the god of Israel,” then that would have been a good reason for nonbelief in Yahweh. Do you see my concern about your reasons for your past disbelief?

“Plenty of people think they are worshiping God, but they are following a false religion. Since I am not following a false religion, I am not one of those people that the verse is speaking about.” –skeptic54768

You haven’t explained how you know you aren’t following a false religion. If the holy book of the religion you follow says it isn’t a false religion, you’re using circular reasoning for support. For example:

Believer: "I’m not following a false religion."
Nonbeliever: "How do you know?"
Believer: "Because the Bible says so."
Nonbeliever: "Why should I believe the Bible?"
Believer: "Because the Bible says all other religions are false. Therefore, I’m not following a false religion.”

See why circular reasoning is considered illogical? Plus, this sort of argument can be used to support any religion.

5. ON PROPHECIES
“I know the Bible is true because of all the prophecies coming true.” - skeptic54768

Biblical prophecy isn’t the least bit convincing. Since you mentioned the prophecy involving the destruction of the Holy Temple, I’ll use that as an example. Here's Jesus' prediction in Mark 13:1-4:

As Jesus was leaving the temple, one of his disciples said to him, “Look, Teacher! What massive stones! What magnificent buildings!” “Do you see all these great buildings?” replied Jesus. “Not one stone here will be left on another; every one will be thrown down.” As Jesus was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter, James, John and Andrew asked him privately, 4 “Tell us, when will these things happen? And what will be the sign that they are all about to be fulfilled?”

Let's ask ourselves the following:

When did the Siege of Jerusalem take place? 70CE.
When was the Gospel of Mark written? No earlier than 70CE.

Case closed.

So we have an unknown author living during the Roman-Jewish War (which involved the destruction of the Holy Temple) that wrote about a man that supposedly predicted the destruction of the Holy Temple. Let that sink in for a minute, then you'll understand why this Biblical prophecy isn’t convincing to nonbelievers and skeptics. But! But the passage is written in present tense! If the temple was already destroyed, why would the author of Mark write it in such a way!? Isn’t it obvious, skeptic54768? The author of Mark is a Christian. He's hardly unbiased and he’s writing a story about Jesus 70-80 years after Jesus’ death. One can conclude that the author wrote it this way to ensure that Jesus’ "prediction" came true.
 
6. ON WOMEN AND SLAVERY
“The Bible says that everyone is equal. This is in contrast with other faiths who think some people are superior, like Islam. Women are treated terribly in Islam, but given free choices in Christianity.” - skeptic54768

When Christians say things like this it makes me wonder if they’ve actually read their own Bible, or studied Christianity’s past. Or know anything about the history of women’s rights. You do realize it’s a relatively new development (18-19th century), right? And here a sample of Biblical equality:

Old Testament:
If a man is caught in the act of raping a young woman who is not engaged, he must pay fifty pieces of silver to her father.  Then he must marry the young woman because he violated her, and he will never be allowed to divorce her.  –Deut. 22:28-29

New Testament:
Women should remain silent in the churches. They are not allowed to speak, but must be in submission, as the law says. If they want to inquire about something, they should ask their own husbands at home; for it is disgraceful for a woman to speak in the church. -1 Cor. 14:34–35

Those are just off the top of my head. There are many more verses that go into detail about how you should chop off the hand of a woman that attempts to stop a fight between two men, how women are treated like property and spoils of war, and how a rapist can force a rape victim to marry him. Much of this is from God’s holy mouth. So I really don’t care what Jesus supposedly said about woman and equality, because it only makes God seem like a flip-flopper on the issue, and Christians certainly didn’t interpret the Bible the way you are for thousands of years. Isn’t it funny that when the moral values in a society change that God’s values suddenly change? SPAG at it's finest.

That is a lot of questions and points! Wow! Admire the dedication!

Please tell me which ones you find most important. I can not respond to everything. I'm getting a headache thinking about all the quote tags.
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Zankuu

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #390 on: October 17, 2013, 09:03:33 PM »
Please tell me which ones you find most important. I can not respond to everything. I'm getting a headache thinking about all the quote tags.

I found those 6 points most important, barring evolution (since you're discussing that in the Insect Gear thread). I don't expect you to tackle them all in one post. But "1. ON ANIMAL SACRIFICE" would be a nice place to start.
Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline Nam

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #391 on: October 17, 2013, 09:16:40 PM »
Please tell me which ones you find most important. I can not respond to everything. I'm getting a headache thinking about all the quote tags.

I found those 6 points most important, barring evolution (since you're discussing that in the Insect Gear thread). I don't expect you to tackle them all in one post. But "1. ON ANIMAL SACRIFICE" would be a nice place to start.

You're still asking too much from him. Present half a question.

;)

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline median

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #392 on: October 17, 2013, 09:16:45 PM »
Once you get the materialistic thinking out of the way and focus on the spiritual, it becomes easier to see it form our point of view.

The problem is that the word "spiritual" has no meaning. It is not tied to anything and has no referent (just like the word schmarbelfarben has no referent). "Spiritual" is a nonsensical term that has not been coherently defined. It is just another word that has been adopted, used, and assumed to have meaning by religious people. If you disagree then maybe you can begin by attempting to provide a coherent definition of "spiritual" (what it is, and not what it is not).



Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Offline skeptic54768

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #393 on: October 17, 2013, 09:24:02 PM »
Once you get the materialistic thinking out of the way and focus on the spiritual, it becomes easier to see it form our point of view.

The problem is that the word "spiritual" has no meaning. It is not tied to anything and has no referent (just like the word schmarbelfarben has no referent). "Spiritual" is a nonsensical term that has not been coherently defined. It is just another word that has been adopted, used, and assumed to have meaning by religious people. If you disagree then maybe you can begin by attempting to provide a coherent definition of "spiritual" (what it is, and not what it is not).

spir·it·u·al
?spiriCHo?o?l/
adjective
adjective: spiritual

    1.
    of, relating to, or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.
    "I'm responsible for his spiritual welfare"
    synonyms:   nonmaterial, incorporeal, intangible; More
    inner, mental, psychological;
    transcendent, ethereal, otherworldly, mystic, mystical, metaphysical;
    rareextramundane
    "your spiritual self"
    antonyms:   physical
        (of a person) not concerned with material values or pursuits.
    2.
    of or relating to religion or religious belief.
    "the tribe's spiritual leader"
    synonyms:   religious, sacred, divine, holy, nonsecular, church, ecclesiastical, faith
Matthew 10:22 "and you will be hated by all for my name’s sake. But the one who endures to the end will be saved." - Jesus (said 2,000 years ago and still true today.)

Offline Nam

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #394 on: October 17, 2013, 09:25:53 PM »
You so did not write that. You have to source your material or it's considered plagiarism.

-Nam
This thread is about lab-grown dicks, not some mincy, old, British poof of an actor. 

Let's get back on topic, please.


Offline Azdgari

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #395 on: October 17, 2013, 09:59:29 PM »
Pfft, isn't the whole idea of "plagiarism" part of the great Atheist Conspiracy?  Real, faithful people don't have to be honest about sh!t, Nam!
I have not encountered any mechanical malfunctioning in my spirit.  It works every single time I need it to.

Offline median

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #396 on: October 17, 2013, 11:07:46 PM »

spir·it·u·al
?spiriCHo?o?l/
adjective
adjective: spiritual

    1.
    of, relating to, or affecting the human spirit or soul as opposed to material or physical things.
    "I'm responsible for his spiritual welfare"
    synonyms:   nonmaterial, incorporeal, intangible; More
    inner, mental, psychological;
    transcendent, ethereal, otherworldly, mystic, mystical, metaphysical;
    rareextramundane
    "your spiritual self"
    antonyms:   physical
        (of a person) not concerned with material values or pursuits.
    2.
    of or relating to religion or religious belief.
    "the tribe's spiritual leader"
    synonyms:   religious, sacred, divine, holy, nonsecular, church, ecclesiastical, faith

Your copy/paste doesn't tell me anything about the word "spirit" as used by you and other theists. It doesn't give me what I asked for. I asked for a POSITIVE definition of what "spirit" or "spiritual" means. That is, I am asking for a description of the alleged Noun (just like if someone asked for a description of the noun "chair"). What makes up a spirit (in positive terms, not negative terms)?

Btw, Nam is right (thx Nam!). The copy/paste you provided is plagiarism by the rules of this forum. You need to cite your sources and just so you know (I thought this was obvious) I'm asking for YOUR DEFINITION, not someone else's written in a dictionary. Didn't you know that philosophical discussions such as this often debate the meanings of terms? Quoting the dictionary doesn't help you here.
« Last Edit: October 17, 2013, 11:11:59 PM by median »
Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence. Carl Sagan

Offline Iamrational

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #397 on: October 17, 2013, 11:11:08 PM »
That is a lot of questions and points! Wow! Admire the dedication!

Actually that right there was complete ownage. You look at that mountain of arguments and you don't know where to start. It makes your head hurt. Don't fret though. It would make my head hurt if I tried to argue an inferior position and someone laid it down like that on me.

The greatest part about that post is everything coming together in its entirety. What is mean is Christians always can talk their way out of one argument. But when you lay down point after point it is so much harder to dance around it all.

Offline Iamrational

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #398 on: October 17, 2013, 11:12:58 PM »
Oh I missed this part. Skeptic says well this is amazing, where should I start?

Z says well how about you start at number 1. OK I am a dork I know I am going back to reading only

Online jaimehlers

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #399 on: October 17, 2013, 11:37:19 PM »
OK, I am seeing that we seem to have a bit of a misunderstanding. No problem with misunderstandings. I can clarify why you are having a misunderstanding.

The child is not my child. The child is God's child. If God tells me to give give Him one of his children, then I will. I will never kill one of God's children on my own. No way.
This actually makes you far more dangerous and threatening, not less.  It means you see no problem with killing any child, no matter who the parents are, provided God tells you to, because they're "God's children" to begin with.  The child's actual parents have no say in the matter, whether or not they are members of your religion, because you would be carrying out God's will, not your own.

If you actually tried to do this, if you actually tried to murder a child because you believed God had told you to, I would consider it an irredeemably evil act, and would try to stop you any way I could.  On top of the murder of a child, you would cause irreparable harm to anyone else who cared about the child; it could not be justified by "but God told me to!"

I strongly advise you to speak to someone about this, because you're a Jim Jones in the making.

Quote from: skeptic54768
We all deserve forgiveness. I love murderers in a spiritual sense. "Hate the sin, love the sinner" is the common phrase. I hate what they are doing, but I love them anyway. Hopefully, they can become right with the Lord before they die. No one is beyond redemption.
In a sense, I agree with you.  No matter what someone does, no matter how crazy they get, they don't stop being a human being.  But there are some things that can't be forgiven, because they show that someone is too dangerous to others to be allowed to continue to live.  In that case, they deserve to die, but as swiftly and painlessly as possible.  My efforts at 'redemption' would be proactive, trying to convince them not to do such things if I was aware of them in advance.  Much as I am trying to do now, with you.

Quote from: skeptic54768
I do not see how this type of pure love can be seen as dangerous. Once you get the materialistic thinking out of the way and focus on the spiritual, it becomes easier to see it form our point of view.
What, you mean like thinking of it as sending someone to meet God instead of an act of murder?  No, I consider that to be exceptionally dangerous.  Once you rationalize murder away like that, it's far too easy to justify actually going through with it.  The worst part is that it isn't love of any kind, let alone pure love.  Love doesn't cause you to kill the object of your love.  Love is when you put someone else ahead of yourself.  Frankly, I'm not sure what it is that would be masquerading as love for you to be able to commit murder and say it was because of love.
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 08:49:20 AM by screwtape »

Offline Angus and Alexis

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #400 on: October 18, 2013, 02:02:05 AM »
Congrats skeptic54768, your argument in a nutshell is.

My god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god .

In that case, the flying spaghetti monster is the real god because pastafarians say so because pastafarians are always right because the flying spaghetti monster is the real god because pastafarians say so because pastafarians are always right because the flying spaghetti monster is the real god because pastafarians say so because pastafarians are always right because the flying spaghetti monster is the real god because pastafarians say so because pastafarians are always right because the flying spaghetti monster is the real god because pastafarians say so because pastafarians are always right because the flying spaghetti monster is the real god.

See how this does not work?
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Offline Jonny-UK

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #401 on: October 18, 2013, 06:36:32 AM »
The child is not my child. The child is God's child. If God tells me to give give Him one of his children, then I will. I will never kill one of God's children on my own. No way.
I really don't know whether to just reply here or call the police.
You would kill a child if your imaginary friend told you too?
I must have missed that quote earlier. As a parent i can assure you that no one who claims to love a child could do that unless seriously mentally ill.
This is also a big point against the claim of there being a loving god. Why would he ever allow a person he supposedly loves to be killed or tortured or raped or starving?

Quote
Congrats skeptic54768, your argument in a nutshell is.

My god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god because the bible says so because it is the word of god because my god is the real god .

Exactly, and why I asked him earlier.....................is there anything outside the book ?
"Do I look like someone who cares what god thinks" - pinhead

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #402 on: October 18, 2013, 06:41:06 AM »
The child is God's child. If God tells me to give give Him one of his children, then I will.

lol I am not dangerous. I find it funny that atheists seem to describe Christians as dangerous.

Yeah.  Absolutely hilarious.  I can't imagine why we atheists would ever think that Christians are dangerous.

54768 , you've just told me that if you thought god wanted you to kill my child, you would kill them.  Can you honestly not see how that makes me believe you are dangerous?
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 Graybeard

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #403 on: October 18, 2013, 07:14:20 AM »

I am not following the power this god showed over Yahweh.
Can you explain your question/point? I'm not seeing it.

You said that no other god had defeated your god. The evidence is against you because we see that the god Chemosh defeated Yahweh when Chemosh and Yahweh decided to fight.

Quote
I will not go into the instances of human sacrifice to God in the Bible but, this was obviously "powerful magic" to the Israelites that truly worried them, and thus we have, as the final act of a desperate god, the folk tale of the crucifixion - a god sacrificing his son.

However, this imaginary crucifixion, when looked at logically, can result in only two conclusions:

Jesus was God as well and therefore could not die.
Jesus was not god but some wandering zealot who ended up dead.

As you won't like the second, I will remind you that gods cannot die and therefore there was no sacrifice.

What do you not understand about the above?
« Last Edit: October 18, 2013, 08:10:51 AM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Prejah

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #404 on: October 18, 2013, 07:50:03 AM »


Chapter 7 talks about the do's and don'ts of marriage. What men can do, and what women can't. It states that a man can divorce a woman (never mentions a wife can divorce her husband), and that verse states that even in divorce she belongs to him. So, he can remarry but she can't or she will become and adulterer. She can only remarry if her husband (ex or otherwise) dies.

Once she marries him she is, basically, his property for life, even in divorce. The whole chapter is about marriage and divorce how you think it is not is baffling.

-Nam

Perhaps you need to read chapter 7 again?

10 To the married I give this command (not I, but the Lord): A wife must not separate from her husband.  11 But if she does, she must remain unmarried or else be reconciled to her husband. And a husband must not divorce his wife. Doesn't this contradict what you said about men divorcing their wives? Men are being told they cannot divorce their wives

13 And if a woman has a husband who is not a believer and he is willing to live with her, she must not divorce him.Clearly gives the authority of the wife to divorce the husband if for just reason-which living with non believer is not.  Nowhere in this chapter, that I can see, does it state that a woman is the husband's property and cannot divorce him if the situation is just. NIV  What version are you quoting from?

This is why skeptic says to start at the verse and work up from the chapter. People who don't understand it tend to get confused when they pick a verse to stand on.

Offline Jag

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Re: Jesus - What Kind of Sacrifice Are You Talking About?
« Reply #405 on: October 18, 2013, 07:53:46 AM »
Well, THIS should be fun!

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"It's hard to, but I'm starting to believe some of you actually believe these things.  That is completely beyond my ability to understand if that is really the case, but things never cease to amaze me."