Author Topic: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)  (Read 6620 times)

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Offline OldChurchGuy

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #87 on: December 25, 2013, 08:27:53 PM »
Is it correct to conclude you understand the Bible to be the divinely inspired interrant Word of God to be taken literally unless the wording in a given passage uses simile's such as "like" or "as"? 

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy

I believe the original autograph to be the divinely inspired, inerrant Word of God.  He used different men over different ages as His scribes and He used different literature styles such as historical narrative, poetry, apocalyptic writing, parables, and letters. The Word of God uses symbolism and imagery at times such as in Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation, so no, it is not every word taken literally, but that's always a good place to start if possible.

Makes sense.  It is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Ever curious,

OldChurchGuy
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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #88 on: December 25, 2013, 09:04:37 PM »
Is it correct to conclude you understand the Bible to be the divinely inspired interrant Word of God to be taken literally unless the wording in a given passage uses simile's such as "like" or "as"? 

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy

I believe the original autograph to be the divinely inspired, inerrant Word of God.  He used different men over different ages as His scribes and He used different literature styles such as historical narrative, poetry, apocalyptic writing, parables, and letters. The Word of God uses symbolism and imagery at times such as in Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation, so no, it is not every word taken literally, but that's always a good place to start if possible.

Makes sense.  It is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Ever curious,

OldChurchGuy

Then you are behind the times.  Much of the recent academic studies place the writings of the New Testament from about 40 AD for the Gospel of Mark to no later than 110 AD for the book of Revelation.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline OldChurchGuy

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #89 on: December 25, 2013, 09:14:08 PM »
Is it correct to conclude you understand the Bible to be the divinely inspired interrant Word of God to be taken literally unless the wording in a given passage uses simile's such as "like" or "as"? 

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy

I believe the original autograph to be the divinely inspired, inerrant Word of God.  He used different men over different ages as His scribes and He used different literature styles such as historical narrative, poetry, apocalyptic writing, parables, and letters. The Word of God uses symbolism and imagery at times such as in Daniel, Ezekiel, and Revelation, so no, it is not every word taken literally, but that's always a good place to start if possible.

Makes sense.  It is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Ever curious,

OldChurchGuy

Then you are behind the times.  Much of the recent academic studies place the writings of the New Testament from about 40 AD for the Gospel of Mark to no later than 110 AD for the book of Revelation.

To quote the famous movie Cool Hand Luke, "What we have here is a failure to communicate".  Please re-read my post.  I am not disputing the date the scholars believe the writings took place.  I am saying it is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle - Philo of Alexandria

Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn't anyone who doesn't appreciate kindness and compassion - Dalai Lama

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #90 on: December 25, 2013, 09:16:55 PM »
I speak only for myself.  If at any time I give the impression on this exchange or any of the other exchanges on this website that I am speaking for Christianity then I apologize as that is never my intent.

You spoke of teaching a Sunday School class - the assumption is that it was in a Christian context since Buddhists and Hindus don't have "Sunday School." You use the moniker "OldChurchGuy," again implying Christianity.  Subtle inferences.

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The second sentence confuses me (as you can tell, I confuse easily).  The sentence "If you claim to be a Christian yet you do not have faith, then you are misled or misleading." is what I am referring to.  How is the word "faith" being defined.

You mentioned faith, these are your words:  "It would appear where we differ is the opening sentence 'So when Jesus said that He is the only way to the Father...'.  If I understand you correctly, you interpret that to mean that Jesus actually said those words (or, at best, words to that effect) and you take that on faith.  I have no problem with you taking such a statement on faith.  Where we differ is that I do not treat my faith as irrefutable fact as it appears you do.  Put another way, you have faith that Jesus said these words and you have faith that these words are not added by some author sometime after the fact.  I admit, I do not have such a faith." 

How do you define faith?

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Regarding the third sentence, for me, the Bible (the Hebrew Bible aka The Old Testament and the New Testament writings) is a collection of stories written by many people (very few of whom are actually known) all trying to describe what it is like to experience God.   So if that means I don't blindly trust it as being 100% the word of God, then you are correct.  The conclusion is based on the perception that no two Christians, even Apologists, are 100% unified on interpreting the entire Bible.
[/quote]

So you just hope you get something out of the text, not knowing if what you read is inspired by God or just a man's opinion?
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline Boots

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #91 on: December 25, 2013, 09:17:29 PM »
Christianity is the only religion that offers salvation through grace by faith in the atoning work of Jesus Christ.  All other religions say "get there the best you can and hope your good works outweigh the bad." So just to make sure it is said - all beliefs are not equal in validity and not equal in what they believe.

Wait a second.

Grace, defined by a quick google search (emphasis mine): (in Christian belief) the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.

Yet you claim you need faith for that grace.  How is that free and unmerited?
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #92 on: December 25, 2013, 09:25:06 PM »

To quote the famous movie Cool Hand Luke, "What we have here is a failure to communicate".  Please re-read my post.  I am not disputing the date the scholars believe the writings took place.  I am saying it is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy

Props for the Cool Hand Luke quote - one of my favorite.

Are you familiar with the Septuagint?  It is the Greek translation of the complete Hebrew Old Testament.  It was completed approximately in the last 2nd century BC. 

Are you asking if the copies are also inspired in the same way the original was, or are you asking me if the copies are true to the original, because if that is what you are asking, then do the research and see the variances in the oldest texts available and you will see that none of the variances change the meaning of the text, so we have reasonable assurance that the texts are very faithful to the original.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #93 on: December 25, 2013, 09:27:11 PM »
Christianity is the only religion that offers salvation through grace by faith in the atoning work of Jesus Christ.  All other religions say "get there the best you can and hope your good works outweigh the bad." So just to make sure it is said - all beliefs are not equal in validity and not equal in what they believe.

Wait a second.

Grace, defined by a quick google search (emphasis mine): (in Christian belief) the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.

Yet you claim you need faith for that grace.  How is that free and unmerited?

I think that I understand what you are asking, but I would like for you to clarify.  Are you asking how grace is free and unmerited if it requires faith to receive it?
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline OldChurchGuy

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #94 on: December 25, 2013, 09:42:52 PM »

To quote the famous movie Cool Hand Luke, "What we have here is a failure to communicate".  Please re-read my post.  I am not disputing the date the scholars believe the writings took place.  I am saying it is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.  So does the "original autograph" pertain only to the original manuscripts or also to the copies which are a few centuries later?

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy

Props for the Cool Hand Luke quote - one of my favorite.

Are you familiar with the Septuagint?  It is the Greek translation of the complete Hebrew Old Testament.  It was completed approximately in the last 2nd century BC. 

Are you asking if the copies are also inspired in the same way the original was, or are you asking me if the copies are true to the original, because if that is what you are asking, then do the research and see the variances in the oldest texts available and you will see that none of the variances change the meaning of the text, so we have reasonable assurance that the texts are very faithful to the original.

Yes, I am aware of the Septuagint.  Not sure what the point is, though.  Would you please clarify how knowing when the Septuagint was written is significant for this exchange?

I am asking if you believe the copies are true to the original.  There appears to be a contradiction and I ask for clarification, please.  I understand the word "inerrant" to mean " Containing no errors.".  Yet the above response appears to concede there are variations.  But the variations are not errors, correct? 

Ever curious,

OldChurchGuy
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle - Philo of Alexandria

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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #95 on: December 25, 2013, 10:01:22 PM »
I am saying it is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.

Quote
Yes, I am aware of the Septuagint.  Not sure what the point is, though.  Would you please clarify how knowing when the Septuagint was written is significant for this exchange?

If Malachi was written approximately 350 BC, it was the last book of the OT canon to be written, yet in less than 200 years there would be a Greek translation of the entire OT.  That's considerably less than "1,000 years after the fact."  In fact, much of the OT (1 Samuel and forward) was written 1,000 BC and after. Many of the Prophets were written between 700 and 350 BC.

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I am asking if you believe the copies are true to the original.  There appears to be a contradiction and I ask for clarification, please.  I understand the word "inerrant" to mean " Containing no errors.".  Yet the above response appears to concede there are variations.  But the variations are not errors, correct? 

You probably know all of the variants by heart OCG. Is it an error when a scribe transcribes 100,000 instead of 10,000?  Yes, obviously that's an error.  But thankfully we have several ancient manuscripts to compare to each other and we know where the "potholes" are in certain manuscripts.  But nothing that can be attributed to scribal error has ever changed one doctrine.  If you want, I can recommend some good resources for your "ever curious" self to do some quality research into this topic.

Space and time do not allow for a really good treatment of this subject in a forum, but i will be more than happy to have a long-term PM discussion of this with you and any others who want to tag along.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline OldChurchGuy

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #96 on: December 25, 2013, 10:42:41 PM »
I am saying it is my understanding the oldest complete set of the New Testament writings are about 200 years after the fact and the complete Hebrew Bible is about 1,000 years after fact.

Quote
Yes, I am aware of the Septuagint.  Not sure what the point is, though.  Would you please clarify how knowing when the Septuagint was written is significant for this exchange?

If Malachi was written approximately 350 BC, it was the last book of the OT canon to be written, yet in less than 200 years there would be a Greek translation of the entire OT.  That's considerably less than "1,000 years after the fact."  In fact, much of the OT (1 Samuel and forward) was written 1,000 BC and after. Many of the Prophets were written between 700 and 350 BC.

Quote
I am asking if you believe the copies are true to the original.  There appears to be a contradiction and I ask for clarification, please.  I understand the word "inerrant" to mean " Containing no errors.".  Yet the above response appears to concede there are variations.  But the variations are not errors, correct? 

You probably know all of the variants by heart OCG. Is it an error when a scribe transcribes 100,000 instead of 10,000?  Yes, obviously that's an error.  But thankfully we have several ancient manuscripts to compare to each other and we know where the "potholes" are in certain manuscripts.  But nothing that can be attributed to scribal error has ever changed one doctrine.  If you want, I can recommend some good resources for your "ever curious" self to do some quality research into this topic.

Space and time do not allow for a really good treatment of this subject in a forum, but i will be more than happy to have a long-term PM discussion of this with you and any others who want to tag along.

I am not disputing when the documents were originally written.  What is the earliest known complete edition of the Hebrew Bible? 

If I understand things correctly, it is OK if there are errors in the Bible because there are other manuscripts to compare the errors with and reach a rational conclusion.  Correct? 

Sincerely,

OldChurchGuy
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle - Philo of Alexandria

Whether one believes in a religion or not, and whether one believes in rebirth or not, there isn't anyone who doesn't appreciate kindness and compassion - Dalai Lama

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #97 on: December 25, 2013, 10:55:00 PM »
I am not disputing when the documents were originally written.  What is the earliest known complete edition of the Hebrew Bible?

If the Septuagint was translated in the 2nd century BC, then you know you have one date for a complete edition.

If Malachi was written approximately middle of the 4th BC, then you could not have a complete edition prior to that.

Quote
If I understand things correctly, it is OK if there are errors in the Bible because there are other manuscripts to compare the errors with and reach a rational conclusion.  Correct?

There are scribal errors in some manuscripts. I.E. Where two different manuscripts would say 10,000 and a third would say 100,000. The scribal errors have been identified by theistic and non-theistic scholars alike. And yes, it is possible to take the context of the immediate passage, compare to other text within the Bible, and compare the different manuscripts to rationally conclude a correct reading.  Other historical documents suffer the same problems, but there are more ancient copies of the books of the Bible than there are of the historical texts, so we have more confidence in the accuracy of the Bible than we do Homer's Iliad and Odyssey or any writings about Julius Caesar, yet few people ever question the accuracy of those texts.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline OldChurchGuy

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #98 on: December 26, 2013, 12:16:43 AM »
I am not disputing when the documents were originally written.  What is the earliest known complete edition of the Hebrew Bible?

If the Septuagint was translated in the 2nd century BC, then you know you have one date for a complete edition.

If Malachi was written approximately middle of the 4th BC, then you could not have a complete edition prior to that.

Quote
If I understand things correctly, it is OK if there are errors in the Bible because there are other manuscripts to compare the errors with and reach a rational conclusion.  Correct?

There are scribal errors in some manuscripts. I.E. Where two different manuscripts would say 10,000 and a third would say 100,000. The scribal errors have been identified by theistic and non-theistic scholars alike. And yes, it is possible to take the context of the immediate passage, compare to other text within the Bible, and compare the different manuscripts to rationally conclude a correct reading.  Other historical documents suffer the same problems, but there are more ancient copies of the books of the Bible than there are of the historical texts, so we have more confidence in the accuracy of the Bible than we do Homer's Iliad and Odyssey or any writings about Julius Caesar, yet few people ever question the accuracy of those texts.

I am beginning to get a bit dizzy by what comes across as the dancing around the key question.  Which means I am not phrasing it correctly.

We seem to be agreed the Septuagint was translated in the 2nd Century B.C.  How far after this date is the oldest known complete version of the Septuagint?  2nd Century B.C.? 1st Century B.C.? The 1100s A.D.? 

I think it is safe to say the Iliad, the Odyssey and writings of Julius Caesar are not considered religious texts divinely inspired by a god.   So I am not sure the argument is valid.  An extraordinary claim for a text to be divinely inspired by God would seem to demand extraordinary proof if you are trying to convince others your theology is sound.   

As always,

OldChurchGuy
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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #99 on: December 26, 2013, 03:28:49 AM »
Happy to answer.  I want to be sure I grok the question though - do you mean "do I consider the concept of free will important in the context of understanding the message of the Bible", or "do I consider having free will to be important in general in the world", or something else?

Actually I just want you to share your thoughts and/or questions on free will, wherever such thoughts lead.  I think it will lead to a good discussion.  I'm not trying to box you in with a question that is spelled out a certain way in order to receive an expected answer or an answer that may be deficient because the question was deficient.

But if you want to drop the topic, I understand.

Everyone here will affirm that I will talk free will until the cows come home!  Which is why I wanted to be sure I understood your question before  I dived in.  But here is the nutshell précis.....

Free will does not exist.
The Bible requires there to be free will to be in any way coherent.
Yahweh would know there is no free will, ergo the Bible is not god-inspired.
The Bible places a lot of emphasis on free will, despite Yahweh making it clear he prefers automata that do not exercise their free will.
In heaven, there is either no free will, or constant chance of losing salvation.  It is likely there is no free will in heaven, but that that is a good thing.
Taken as a whole, mankind would be better served in religious terms by never having free will.  All the benefits of man having free will apply to Yahweh, not to man.

Quite a lot there - sorry.  I may split this thread.....but not while I'm on my ipad, it would drive me buggy.
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 Boots

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #100 on: December 26, 2013, 09:22:00 AM »

Wait a second.

Grace, defined by a quick google search (emphasis mine): (in Christian belief) the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.

Yet you claim you need faith for that grace.  How is that free and unmerited?

I think that I understand what you are asking, but I would like for you to clarify.  Are you asking how grace is free and unmerited if it requires faith to receive it?
yes
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

"We humans may never figure out the truth, but I prefer trying to find it over pretending we know it."  ~ParkingPlaces

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #101 on: December 26, 2013, 09:34:44 AM »
So you're saying that humans can't know right from wrong.

Can you tell me your theory of how humans decide what is right and what is wrong?

Yes, it is very simple. Two people are stranded on a desert island. They must then agree (tacitly or otherwise) upon a set of rules that both might survive until rescuers arrive. There is no need for a god.

Have you any other questions?
RELIGION, n. A daughter of Hope and Fear, explaining to Ignorance the nature of the Unknowable. Ambrose Bierce

Offline Boots

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #102 on: December 26, 2013, 09:58:42 AM »
So you're saying that humans can't know right from wrong.

Can you tell me your theory of how humans decide what is right and what is wrong?

Yes, it is very simple. Two people are stranded on a desert island. They must then agree (tacitly or otherwise) upon a set of rules that both might survive until rescuers arrive. There is no need for a god.

Have you any other questions?

Nice and succinct, Gray.  Please allow me to add one thing: proof positive that no god is required is the case study of my 2 children.  We are an a-religious household, neither child has any belief in a supernatural supreme being of any flavor (unless you count Santa, my youngest still believes).  These are two of the most polite, well-rounded, and "good" kids you ever want to meet.  They know that some people believe in a diety of some flavor, and that folks go to church to "hear a priest make speeches, and for people to make vows" (<--my youngest's near spot-on description of what she thinks going to church is!)  But they know what hurst other people, and what makes other people feel good.  They do the right thing because it's the right thing.

They also know that other kids/families can look down on them for their lack of superstitions--that the followers of the Xian god, for example, can be extremely intolerant of their atheism, depsite that, to mmy kids, it makes no sense to believe in a god.  My children have been persecuted (mildly, but persecuted nonetheless) for their atheism by Christians, who I see every day of the week play the persecution card with no justification, and no appreciation of irony or recognition of hypocisy.

My point: even if I didn't know where morality came from, I sure as heck know it does NOT come from any god.
* Religion: institutionalized superstition, period.

"Many of my ultra-conservative Republican friends...have trouble accepting the idea God is not a Republican. " ~OldChurchGuy

"We humans may never figure out the truth, but I prefer trying to find it over pretending we know it."  ~ParkingPlaces

Offline jtk73

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #103 on: December 26, 2013, 03:18:21 PM »
Because he is intelligent and intelligent people write down what they want others to know and understand?
a) Yahweh, even if he exists, did not write the bible., b)Yahweh is not 'people', he is supposedly an all-powerful, all-knowing being - I would expect a level of communication more advanced than humans could ever devise., c) No, if there is something THIS important and Yahweh really wants everyone to know and understand, he would appear to each and every individual and give them the message TO THEIR FACE and the message would be the same for EVERY SINGLE PERSON that has ever lived, is alive today or ever will live.

Throwing this in because it was a reply to me and it was somewhat related.

Why does He need to come down and answer your questions?
Because I can't get straight, logical answers from his collection of stories nor from any of his followers. He's supposedly all-powerful. It would take him all of 0 seconds and more importantly zero effort.

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Why don't you start with what information you have and work with that?  Most people don't ever make a sincere effort to take the information that has been given them and use it
Why would I do any of the above mentioned if there is no definitive, demonstrable evidence that any of it is true. If I am going this route, why choose Christianity over Hinduism or Islam? They have information that I can start with. Can you give me one single, logical reason why Christianity is more valid than Hinduism?

I'm putting in the exact amount of effort that I see Yahweh putting in.

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...or they come with a closed mind and presuppositions (i.e. "The bible if false, but I'll try it." Atheists reads the book of Numbers. "Yep, just like I thought, no answers.")
This is a huge assumption on your part. I've read enough of the bible to know that a majority of it doesn't match up with reality. I'm sorry, should I assume the bible is true and then read it? Should I do this with all other books that I read?

Forgot some more of my questions that you had replied to...
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You won't understand why Yahweh is worthy of worship because you are predisposed to not want to know.
Huge, unwarranted assumption on your part. Also, I didn't say that I don't understand. I said that he doesn't behave like a super-intelligent, all-loving, all-knowing, all-powerful entity. He behaves like a tantrum throwing toddler and I don't see that as worthy of worship. I actually see that as worthy of disdain.

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But I would answer your question if you will explain how you would be qualified to pass judgment when you can't even spell it correctly.
Firstly, they are both valid spellings, genius. Secondly, I explained exactly why I was MORE THAN qualified to pass judgement on Yahweh's childish behavior and instead of agreeing or refuting me, you snub an incorrectly perceived spelling error. Nice dodge.

« Last Edit: December 26, 2013, 04:23:12 PM by jtk73 »

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #104 on: December 26, 2013, 03:39:50 PM »
We seem to be agreed the Septuagint was translated in the 2nd Century B.C.  How far after this date is the oldest known complete version of the Septuagint?  2nd Century B.C.? 1st Century B.C.? The 1100s A.D.?

If you have a complete Old Testament - all 39 books by Christian division (some of the 1st and 2nds were one book instead of two in Hebrew) - and it was translated somewhere between 200 BC and 100 BC, then you be comfortable that you had a complete Hebrew collection that we call the OT between 200BC and 100 BC.

If the 39th book wasn't written until around 350 BC, then you would not have had a complete collection of all 39 books prior to the 39th book being written.

A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #105 on: December 26, 2013, 03:42:58 PM »

I think it is safe to say the Iliad, the Odyssey and writings of Julius Caesar are not considered religious texts divinely inspired by a god.   So I am not sure the argument is valid.  An extraordinary claim for a text to be divinely inspired by God would seem to demand extraordinary proof if you are trying to convince others your theology is sound.   


The comments in regards to Homer's and Julius' writings was within the context of what we were talking about - scribal errors on subsequent copies, not divine inspiration. 

Are you a used car salesman, because when I was a used car salesman I used the same diversionary tactics.  Someone would be talking about gas mileage and I would ignore their comments and start talking about the sound system.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #106 on: December 26, 2013, 03:52:53 PM »

Free will does not exist.

Please clarify or expound on this.  Are you saying that even if your worldview (I'm assuming based on everything I've seen you post that you are an atheist - correct me if I'm wrong) is correct and there is no God that man does not make choices based on his own will? 

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The Bible requires there to be free will to be in any way coherent.

Agreed.

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Yahweh would know there is no free will, ergo the Bible is not god-inspired.
The Bible places a lot of emphasis on free will, despite Yahweh making it clear he prefers automata that do not exercise their free will.
In heaven, there is either no free will, or constant chance of losing salvation.  It is likely there is no free will in heaven, but that that is a good thing.
Taken as a whole, mankind would be better served in religious terms by never having free will.  All the benefits of man having free will apply to Yahweh, not to man.

Quite a lot there - sorry.  I may split this thread.....but not while I'm on my ipad, it would drive me buggy.

All this is dependent on your assumption that there is no free will.  I'm looking forward to hearing how you get there, even if it is in a new thread.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline Astreja

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #107 on: December 26, 2013, 03:54:07 PM »
Can you tell me your theory of how humans decide what is right and what is wrong?

Yes, it is very simple. Two people are stranded on a desert island. They must then agree (tacitly or otherwise) upon a set of rules that both might survive until rescuers arrive. There is no need for a god.

Further to what Graybeard said, there is a natural bias towards sustainable behaviour patterns in most, if not all, successful cultures.  Think about it:  Would you want to live in a town where people regularly broke into one another's houses and killed the occupants?  Probably not. You'd move to another town, or even get together with people who were just as fed up as you, and start another town with clear-cut rules of what was allowable.  You might even designate the best fighters as the town defenders.

Most humans aren't stupid enough to bite the hand that feeds them, or to crap in their own beds -- They realize that the best way to avoid trouble is not to start it.
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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #108 on: December 26, 2013, 03:57:03 PM »

Wait a second.

Grace, defined by a quick google search (emphasis mine): (in Christian belief) the free and unmerited favor of God, as manifested in the salvation of sinners and the bestowal of blessings.

Yet you claim you need faith for that grace.  How is that free and unmerited?

I think that I understand what you are asking, but I would like for you to clarify.  Are you asking how grace is free and unmerited if it requires faith to receive it?
yes

If I put $500,000,000 dollars in an account with your name on it, just because I wanted to, would the fact that you have to use your debit card, write a check, or go to the bank to make a withdrawal make my act of grace anything less than an act of grace?  Would you merit the $500,000,000 any more just because you appropriated it?  No. Your works or worthiness did not initiate the gift.  Your effort is only required to enjoy the grace gift, not to initiate it.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline jtk73

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #109 on: December 26, 2013, 04:01:01 PM »
If you differentiate the person of Yahweh into God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit
So you are polytheistic? You believe in three gods?

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then no one has seen the Father
Convenient...

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but God the Son said if you have seen Him then you have seen the Father.
Sounds like schizophrenia.

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God the Father is Spirit
What the frell is a Spirit?

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God the Son was Spirit but took on the flesh of humanity.
This sounds both disturbing and gross.

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So no one, including me, has seen the Father or the Holy Spirit. I have not seen God the Son.
Odd that.

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But that leaves the spiritual sense of visitation.
Was LSD any part of this 'visitation'?

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but according to the biblical worldview, resides within me continually.
That sounds weird. So he's there when you are trimming your nose hair or pooping? Does he have his mail forwarded?

Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #110 on: December 26, 2013, 04:10:19 PM »

Free will does not exist.

Please clarify or expound on this.  Are you saying that even if your worldview (I'm assuming based on everything I've seen you post that you are an atheist - correct me if I'm wrong) is correct and there is no God that man does not make choices based on his own will?  .

Yup.

All this is dependent on your assumption that there is no free will.  I'm looking forward to hearing how you get there, even if it is in a new thread.
Because all the evidence points to there being none.  If you believe there is, I'd be fascinated to hear how if works.
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 gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #111 on: December 26, 2013, 04:26:36 PM »
Because he is intelligent and intelligent people write down what they want others to know and understand?
a) Yahweh, even if he exists, did not write the bible.,

Have you ever heard of an amanuensis, a secretary, or someone who takes dictation?

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b)Yahweh is not 'people', he is supposedly an all-powerful, all-knowing being - I would expect a level of communication more advanced than humans could ever devise.,

If it was more advanced than humans could ever devise, then how could humans understand it?


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c) No, if there is something THIS important and Yahweh really wants everyone to know and understand, he would appear to each and every individual and give them the message TO THEIR FACE and the message would be the same for EVERY SINGLE PERSON that has ever lived, is alive today or ever will live.

You are imposing your morality into the situation.  What determines, other than your wants, what Yahweh should or should not do?  Would He be unjust for giving some the information and not all?  If so, by whose standards is He unjust?  Yours or His?

Throwing this in because it was a reply to me and it was somewhat related.

Why does He need to come down and answer your questions?
Because I can't get straight, logical answers from his collection of stories nor from any of his followers. He's supposedly all-powerful. It would take him all of 0 seconds and more importantly zero effort.

I'm sorry that you've not gotten straight, logical answers from any of His followers.  I'll be glad to work through the questions, share what I know whether logical or not, and let you know if I don't know an answer. You can PM me with questions or start a new thread.

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Why don't you start with what information you have and work with that?  Most people don't ever make a sincere effort to take the information that has been given them and use it
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Why would I do any of the above mentioned if there is no definitive, demonstrable evidence that any of it is true. If I am going this route, why choose Christianity over Hinduism or Islam? They have information that I can't start with. Can you give me one single, logical reason why Christianity is more valid than Hinduism?

I'm putting in the exact amount of effort that I see Yahweh putting in.

So how much of the Bible have you read? You said you've read at least some of "his collection of stories." What did you read?  What questions were you looking to answer?


How much do you know about Hinduism, a complex religion of 3.3 million gods?  I still have a lot to learn about it. How much time do you have to discuss this topic?  Who's the judge of what is "logical"?


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...or they come with a closed mind and presuppositions (i.e. "The bible if false, but I'll try it." Atheists reads the book of Numbers. "Yep, just like I thought, no answers.")
This is a huge assumption on your part. I've read enough of the bible to know that a majority of it doesn't match up with reality. I'm sorry, should I assume the bible is true and then read it? Should I do this will all other books that I read?
[/quote]

No, don't assume anything.  Have an open mind - consider the possibility that it is true and try to forget your prejudices towards it.

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Forgot some more of my questions that you had replied to...
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You won't understand why Yahweh is worthy of worship because you are predisposed to not want to know.
Huge, unwarranted assumption on your part. Also, I didn't say that I don't understand. I said that he doesn't behave like a super-intelligent, all-loving, all-knowing, all-powerful entity. He behaves like a tantrum throwing toddler and I don't see that as worthy of worship. I actually see that as worthy of disdain.

A lot of aspersion here.  Do you want to discuss specific instances where you believe God acted like a tantrum-throwing toddler and discuss these in their context?

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But I would answer your question if you will explain how you would be qualified to pass judgment when you can't even spell it correctly.
Firstly, they are both valid spellings, genius. Secondly, I explained exactly why I was MORE THAN qualified to pass judgement on Yahweh's childish behavior and instead of agreeing or refuting me, you snub an incorrectly perceived spelling error. Nice dodge.
[/quote]

you must be British.  and no, you haven't explained to me in a "straight, logical answer" how you are qualified to pass judgement or judgment on any deity.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #112 on: December 26, 2013, 04:48:16 PM »
If you differentiate the person of Yahweh into God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit
So you are polytheistic? You believe in three gods?

No.  I believe in one God.  Because He is not human, He does not have to be like a human, who can only exist as one person. He reveals Himself as one God who is three persons.  There is no contradiction.  The three are of the same "essense" or godness.

The closest approximation I can come to this in human terms is "I am one human with three roles.  I am a father, a son, and a husband.  At no time do I quit being a father so that I can be a son, or quit being a husband so that I can be a father."

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then no one has seen the Father
Convenient...
[/quote]

The concept of a being so transcendent over humanity that a human could not look upon it and live is "convenient"?

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but God the Son said if you have seen Him then you have seen the Father.
Sounds like schizophrenia.
[/quote]

No, schizophrenia implies that there are split minds.  Jesus (God the Son) and God the Father are of the same essense, mind, and will.

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God the Father is Spirit
What the frell is a Spirit?
[/quote]

What the hell is "frell"?

What is a Spirit?  God never really explains it in a straight-forward, logical way.  Jesus says that the Spirit gives life.  The Bible says that God breathed His Spirit into Adam so that Adam became a living soul. A spirit is a living being, but not a human. I only know about God as a Spirit and about spirits from what the Bible says.

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God the Son was Spirit but took on the flesh of humanity.
This sounds both disturbing and gross.
[/quote]

Why disturbing and gross?

God the Son somehow took on a second nature, the nature and physical form of a human being, in Mary's womb.  After He was born, He had to physically endure all that humans endure - stubbing His toe; getting hungry, tired, and thirsty; betrayal and rejection; and death (though a much worse death than most humans experience) - so that He could empathize with His creation.  This should be comforting and encouraging.

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So no one, including me, has seen the Father or the Holy Spirit. I have not seen God the Son.
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Odd that.

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But that leaves the spiritual sense of visitation.
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Was LSD any part of this 'visitation'?

No, I was stone-cold sober.

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but according to the biblical worldview, resides within me continually.
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That sounds weird. So he's there when you are trimming your nose hair or pooping? Does he have his mail forwarded?

The Apostle Paul was warning Christians about having sex with prostitutes.  He said that Jesus is even there when you have sex with a prostitute. 

"Do you not know that your bodies are members of Christ? Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a prostitute? Never! Or do you not know that he who is joined to a prostitute becomes one body with her? For, as it is written, “The two will become one flesh.” But he who is joined to the Lord becomes one spirit with him. Flee from sexual immorality. Every other sin a person commits is outside the body, but the sexually immoral person sins against his own body. Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body." (1 Corinthians 6:15-20, ESV)

I have spent a lot of time trying to at least address your comments.  You bring up valid questions and I will gladly spend time trying to address them in more detail if you are sincere and earnest in your desire to hear answers from a biblical Christian perspective.  If you just want to hurl insults and make derogatory statements towards Christianity, the Bible, and God, then that will be apparent as the discussion progresses and I will likely not waste any time indulging you.

Peace and grace.
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #113 on: December 26, 2013, 04:54:32 PM »

Because all the evidence points to there being none.  If you believe there is, I'd be fascinated to hear how if works.

I would be more fascinated to hear how, in your opinion, humans have no free will.

But for me, humans have a certain amount of free will within certain spheres in our lives.  Are we free to choose to grow gills and swim underwater like Kevin Costner in Waterworld?  No. But am I free to choose to sign on to the Forum or ignore the Forum? Yes.

We all have choices each day to make.  Within those choices, we have free will.  Even the spheres we live in can be changed and the choices we then have each day will change.  EX: As long as I continue working at the same employer, I only have certain choices I can make (get up and bathe or not, wear a tie or not, leave work at 4 or 5 pm, etc.), but if I exercise my free will one day and just not show up for work, then I will lose some of the choices I had and get different choices (get food stamps or beg).
A dog barks when his master is attacked. I would be a coward if I saw that God's truth is attacked and yet would remain silent. - John Calvin

Offline Hatter23

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #114 on: December 26, 2013, 05:09:02 PM »
Your perspective assumes that you know at least as much, or more, than Yahweh.  That would be the only position from which you could then pass moral judgment on Him.


I do not need to know every possible detail of the life of a person who instigated genocide to pass judgement on said person as morally lacking and vile.

So your premise is invalid.
An Omnipowerful God needed to sacrifice himself to himself (but only for a long weekend) in order to avert his own wrath against his own creations who he made in a manner knowing that they weren't going to live up to his standards.

And you should feel guilty for this. Give me money.

Offline jtk73

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #115 on: December 26, 2013, 05:50:03 PM »
Have you ever heard of an amanuensis, a secretary, or someone who takes dictation?
Oh, you mean like the person or persons who took dictation for Joseph Smith (the Mormon dude) as he translated the golden tablets.

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If it was more advanced than humans could ever devise, then how could humans understand it?
Because understanding is different than devising.

Also, you must have missed this part..
Quote from: jtk73
b)Yahweh is not 'people', he is supposedly an all-powerful, all-knowing being - I would expect a level of communication more advanced than humans could ever devise.,

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You are imposing your morality into the situation. What determines, other than your wants, what Yahweh should or should not do?
This has nothing to do with morality or my wants. It has everything to do with logic -
a)Yahweh has a desire (everyone be saved, have a personal relationship, what-have-you..)
b)Yahweh has every ability to fulfill that desire (all-powerful, all-knowing)
c)Everyone is 'saved', begins a relationship, .... Oh, wait.
Either the desire is not there, the ability is not there or Yahweh is not there.

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Would He be unjust for giving some the information and not all?
If not receiving the information results in suffering, absolutely. It would also infer that he is not all-loving as many of his followers claim.

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If so, by whose standards is He unjust?  Yours or His?
Anyone that is not a sadist.

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I'm sorry that you've not gotten straight, logical answers from any of His followers.  I'll be glad to work through the questions, share what I know whether logical or not, and let you know if I don't know an answer. You can PM me with questions or start a new thread.
It's not really your or other followers fault. You just have horrendous source material.
Why do you have to answer my questions of him, for him?

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So how much of the Bible have you read? You said you've read at least some of "his collection of stories." What did you read?  What questions were you looking to answer?
In my entire life, I would approximate that I have read about 90 - 95% of the bible. Again, enough to see that it does not match up with reality. Enough to think that the light in which the writers portray Yahweh, is not the light in which they were hoping to portray him. Or maybe it was. Maybe they thought a jealous, petty, vindictive sky wizard was cool.

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How much do you know about Hinduism, a complex religion of 3.3 million gods?
I know Hinduism has one god with many aspects. In what way is it any more complex than Christianity? What does complexity have to do with validity in regards to religion?

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Who's the judge of what is "logical"?
Logic.

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No, don't assume anything.  Have an open mind - consider the possibility that it is true and try to forget your prejudices towards it. A lot of aspersion here.  Do you want to discuss specific instances where you believe God acted like a tantrum-throwing toddler and discuss these in their context?
For the purposes of discussion (I don't believe any of this) - The garden of Eden, the flood, the plagues visited on Egypt, the bald dude with the attack bears, the tower of Babel, Sodom & Gomorrah, Job's ordeals.

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and no, you haven't explained to me in a "straight, logical answer" how you are qualified to pass judgement or judgment on any deity.
Firstly, your original question was referring to Yahweh. Now you are referring to any deity. It is entirely possible that there exist a deity or deities that are morally superior to me - Yahweh is not one of them. Still see no evidence for any of them, so even if they exist, they are irrelevant.
Also, I haven't murdered a single person in my entire life. That, immediately makes me morally superior to Yahweh