Author Topic: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)  (Read 10283 times)

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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #232 on: December 30, 2013, 10:44:56 PM »

I just posted my definition of sin another thread, but I'll give it here as well:  Sin is anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God.  So when I speak of sin, it is within this context.

Do you want to continue the discussion of payment of sin?

So, is all sin black and white?  Is there a 'gray area' of sin?

Such as? Is there something specific that you have in mind?
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 MadBunny

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #233 on: December 30, 2013, 10:51:51 PM »
I don't believe in sin.  That's you.

I'm trying to get a clear idea of what you think sin actually is.  I mean, are you committing sin just by conversing with atheists instead of trying to stone us to death?

Is there more than one punishment, ANY punishment for sin?
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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #234 on: December 30, 2013, 10:58:35 PM »
I don't believe in sin.  That's you.

I'm trying to get a clear idea of what you think sin actually is.  I mean, are you committing sin just by conversing with atheists instead of trying to stone us to death?

Is there more than one punishment, ANY punishment for sin?

I gave you an answer already.  Are you badgering me?  Moderators, are you taking notice of this?

Again, I'll type it out really s-l-o-w-l-y for you:  Sin is anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God (God of the Bible).  Other people say this is a clear explanation of my belief.  What part of "anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God" do you not understand (I know you don't believe that sin and God exists, that's not the question.)   Would it help if I put it in Spanish for you?

Is there more than one punishment for sin? The Bible says the wage of sin is death.  More than physical death, it is the eternal destruction that never ceases (according to my particular understanding of death, hell, lake of fire, etc.)

But if you don't believe in God of the Bible, and you don't believe in absolute objective moral truths, then there is no such thing as sin, therefore no punishment of sin.
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 MadBunny

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #235 on: December 30, 2013, 11:37:03 PM »
Did you?  I didn't see it, my apologies.  If you link the post I'll go back and read that.
If you think this is badgering, feel free to report it over the sound of my laughter.  Please remember that from my perspective I'm talking to somebody who thinks I *deserve* to be tortured and burn in hell beyond the heat death of the universe.

From your post here it looks like sin is whatever you want it to be.  How very convenient.  A bit too convenient don't you think?

To clarify: the punishment for sin is death (plus).  The plus part being eternal torture in one form or another depending on your sect I suppose.  This is actually a pretty common understanding, I wanted to be sure it was also yours as well.

Again, is there a 'gray area' sin?  Like a 'little sin' that doesn't result in eternal torture, is it pretty much just black and white?

Is telling a lie a sin?
Is talking to an atheist a sin?

It seems to me that if your rules are black and white then eventually you're going to break one, and suffer the penalty, but if the rule has gray area then it's just a suggestion rather than a rule.




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Offline median

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #236 on: December 31, 2013, 12:13:12 AM »
The idea that the all-powerful, all-good, god Yahweh (the alleged deity of the bible) is morally perfect (and all loving) cannot be rationally defended while still maintaining that Satan is roaming the earth like a lion "seeking whom he may devour".

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.

So there is a double standard then? Are you trying to argue that your alleged God 'thing' can be self contradictory? Under what circumstance (any circumstance) is it morally justified to allow a 'lion' in your house to devour your children but at the same time say that you "love" your children? Further, how can you argue that we are "made in the image and likeness of God" if you think your alleged deity allows this? "Moral perfection" has absolutely no meaning if you admit that your alleged God can violate his own rules.

You are quite wrong in your assertion above. I do not claim to know more than this "Yahweh" imaginary thing of which you speak - b/c I don't think it is real. However, there is still a direct contradiction with your theology and you haven't resolved it just by spinning or rationalizing (aka - the "bigger purpose" argument - as that argument could be used by Muslims as well). Both attempts fail to demonstrate a resolution to the conflict in your theology. An all-loving being would not allow a lion to 'devour' his children. Would you?

If you're willing to admit that you wouldn't do it (and that it would be immoral for you to do so) then please demonstrate how it CAN be moral for your alleged God but not for you.

God allegedly created hell (a place for Satan) but then allows Satan and his minions out of hell to torment his alleged children. Such actions are neither moral nor loving.


What is your source for saying that God ever had satan and his minions in Hell ever?  The Bible doesn't say that they have ever been in Hell yet, but if you know of a verse that says so, please share it and I'll stand corrected.


You just misrpresented my argument. Please read it again. I said according to your bible God created hell for this alleged 'Satan' character, Matthew 25:41 and Revelation 20:7-10.

Now, is hell separation from God? If so, then Satan has been in hell since he and the angels were thrown out (in this myth).


Regarding your take on God tormenting His children, again 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.


Ah but see, you too have also passed moral judgment upon this 'god' conception you have in your mind. You have determined that this 'thing' is "good". How do you know that? By what process have you come to that conclusion? If your moral reasoning has been corrupted by "sin" then you have no reliable means for making that determination.



The truth comes out - you believe you are morally superior to God. The problem of evil does not disprove God's existence nor His holiness nor His love for humanity.

Are you familiar with martial arts?  How do students become better skilled?  By facing opponents.  Sometimes facing opponents stronger and better skilled than they are.

Satan and his minions can be used by God for good in someone's life if it brings that person into a better understanding of God and their relationship to Him and others. God can use negatives to bring about much positive, but at the time it may seem like eternal torment, because we are limited in our understanding of God and our own selves.

Peace and grace.

The truth has been out for a long time. Your God is imaginary and the problem of evil does in fact disprove your alleged deity, but of course that subject is not directly related to this OP. Morality is about well being and the minimization of harm. If you attempt to talk about anything else besides that, then you aren't talking about morality. In that sense, I am in fact morally superior to this wacko 'god' creature you believe in, and you know what, so are you. I'm guessing that you wouldn't allow a lion to devour your children or your family, would you? And yet you think your God would allow his children to be devoured, right?

I will await your response as to how you think this alleged God can allow these things and still be called loving, but until then this argument has been dealt with. The God of the bible is either not loving or imaginary. I go with option #2, just like I go with that option regarding all of the other man-made gods from history (as likely you do too!).


Doesn't it seem at least a little bit hypocritical that any time you think God did something that was beneficial to you, you can say he is "good" - but when horrific things occur you don't find yourself lifting your hands and saying, "Thank you God that you allowed such horror"? Did you say, "Praise Jesus for all those Nazi slaughter houses" or "Thank you God for the horror of Jeffrey Dahmer"? I don't think you did, but if so that would make you one sick individual who has sacrificed his own reasoning and moral sense for a mere belief in an old book.

Your God is not your standard of morality. You are.

p.s. - Your martial arts analogy fails as well b/c w'ere talking about a lion against a child who cannot defend itself again such a thing (aka - an invisible demon vs a physical person). Never-mind the fact that the very concept of 'immaterial person' is incoherent, loving parents of martial arts students do not put their kids in the ring to fight with creatures that would kill them.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2013, 01:05:48 AM by median »
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Offline median

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #237 on: December 31, 2013, 12:35:05 AM »

Wait which proposition are you making? Clearly you are not claiming one or the other, or you would be breaking the law of the excluded middle. Lets then consider the middle.:

How can we have the freedom to do anything if we do not have the freedom to fail. If we do not have the option to be harmed, if we do not have the option to harm others, how then could we ever chose to be good? Please list any scenario in which God could stop something bad from happening to us without taking away our freedom to chose.

The problem with this argument is that you are forwarding that God is a parent to humanity in the same way that a mother is a parent to their child. The position of creator of the universe and humanity may hold certain moral implications that neither you nor I understand. But I will leave you with this, Does not even a Mother, after her child grows up, let her child forge his or her own path?

The bible refers to this alleged god as "father", and all over the place draws comparison to god being a parent type figure. Perhaps you need to go back and read those parts more carefully.

This last part here is a false analogy. A loving mother (or a loving father) would remove a roaring lion from the midst of her/his children immediately. Yet your alleged deity does not under your theology (aka - sorry your imaginary deity is not loving). But of course we would in fact expect these kinds of vile writings from MEN (just like we see in Islam and hundreds of other cults through history).

Now, if this alleged 'god' thing holds "certain moral implications" (that you can't understand - and which are btw contrary to it's own rules) how have you then come to the determination that this thing is good? It could very well be that this being is the evil one and you are being tricked, especially since this would force you to accept that horrific acts of murder, rape, incest, or any any other disgusting or vile act could be deemed 'good' (aka moral) even when you find it repugnant. Sorry, to such things I call bullshit.

To the first argument, "freedom to fail" has absolutely nothing to do with allowing a hungry lion to eat your children in the backyard. You ask about a scenario in which this alleged god could save us from harm but not remove our freedom, as if you don't think this is possible. Have you read your bible? Numerous places are there in which this allegedly occurs (such as the parting of the red sea - they still had choice). An intervention from a deity has nothing to do with free choice (just look to your doctrine of Satan and the angels dude). They supposedly had direct access to this "God" and still rebelled. I'm sorry, freewill has nothing to do with this.
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Offline median

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #238 on: December 31, 2013, 01:10:21 AM »
God did come down and answer questions.  He left a whole big book of answers.  Some people come to it with preconceived notions though and can't glean truth from it because of their prejudices.

Oh the irony...



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Offline Anfauglir

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #239 on: December 31, 2013, 07:29:02 AM »
I don't believe in sin.  That's you.

I'm trying to get a clear idea of what you think sin actually is.  I mean, are you committing sin just by conversing with atheists instead of trying to stone us to death?
Is there more than one punishment, ANY punishment for sin?

I gave you an answer already.  Are you badgering me?  Moderators, are you taking notice of this?

Again, I'll type it out really s-l-o-w-l-y for you:  Sin is anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God (God of the Bible).  Other people say this is a clear explanation of my belief.  What part of "anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God" do you not understand (I know you don't believe that sin and God exists, that's not the question.)   Would it help if I put it in Spanish for you?

Spanish I don't think is necessary.  But what would be useful, I think (that would address what MadBunny is asking) is to at least begin a definitive list of what actually pleases/displease Yahweh.  Without such a list, as MadBunny says, it can become whatever you want it to be at any particular time.

I'm sure we've all seen the film with the psychopathic bad guy.  All his henchmen tiptoe around him, never quite sure what to say in case today is the day he doesn't like it (and of course he always gets his comeuppance because someone ends up not telling him something for fear of his reaction....but I digress!).

I'm equally sure that you in no way see Yahweh as that kind of being - he is a loving and GOOD creature, and would be devastated to think that the creatures he loves are in any way unclear about what is good and what is not - in this case, what is sin and what is not.  So I would expect - from a loving and good god - that his top priority would be an unambiguous list of what pleases him, and what does not.  So I would be grateful if you could make a start on that list with some specifics of sins, rather than the vague and (to the current unbeliever) frankly unhelpful "sin is whatever Yahweh doesn't like".
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 median

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #240 on: December 31, 2013, 11:53:49 AM »

Why does He need to come down and answer your questions?  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, 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.")

You won't understand why Yahweh is worthy of worship because you are predisposed to not want to know.  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.

Muslims, Mormons, Hindus, and countless others try to say this same thing to us non-believers. Your words are exceedingly ironic in that you came to the bible with an assumption that it was true (which was influenced by the culture of which you grew up - aka you started with your conclusion). The problem with your assessment though is that I (and many others here) believed like you do for nearly 20 years. I later discovered how irrational theology is and how Christians have to spin, rationalize, dodge, use confirmation bias, and/or lie to continue arguing for it.


These things are evidenced in you by your own words - aka the irrational arguments you chose to accept for deism first (namely an argument from ignorance/incredulity fallacy - likely among others) and then onto full superstition in the bible. How can you claim to be neutral and/or open-minded when you are wholly committed and uncritical of your own view? 

Evidence here:
Quote
I don't know why God chose to reveal Himself this way in different places in the Bible.  Since the Bible says that He is one God but expressed as the three Persons, then I guess He is just trying to help us understand Him.  Why does He call Himself Jehovah Jirah in one place, Jehovah Nissi in another, etc?  Each time it reveals something of His character.

The "trinity" is just one example of religious SPIN. The bible does not say "one god in three persons". You say that. If you were actually willing to be critical of this view you would accept it as a direct contradiction. 3 cannot equal 1, and that the bible says there is only one god but then mentions multiple gods. Your reinterpretation of it (and those of your predecessors) is a spin tactic b/c you started with the conclusion that it CAN'T be a contradiction (in fact the Jews and other Christians don't even accept it but that is where your confirmation bias begins). How convenient that you do this with all of your theological beliefs (assume that they can't be false and then mold/squash/reinterpret them to fit your prior theological commitments). Honest skepticism (the kind you would practice toward Islam, etc) says otherwise.

This is far from being open-minded. It is closed-minded in the highest degree b/c you have committed yourself to confirmation of your assumptions NO-MATTER-WHAT.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2013, 12:07:50 PM by median »
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Offline Hatter23

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #241 on: December 31, 2013, 01:59:38 PM »
Care to address the fact that sin does not remain sin over time.....the example of women speaking in church is a fine example....a sin until the early 20th century

Just because something once considered a sin is being done now doesn't mean that it is no longer a sin. 

like vegetable gardens, shellfish, and mixed fabrics
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.

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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #242 on: December 31, 2013, 06:22:43 PM »
Did you?  I didn't see it, my apologies.  If you link the post I'll go back and read that.
If you think this is badgering, feel free to report it over the sound of my laughter.  Please remember that from my perspective I'm talking to somebody who thinks I *deserve* to be tortured and burn in hell beyond the heat death of the universe.

From your post here it looks like sin is whatever you want it to be.  How very convenient.  A bit too convenient don't you think?

How is "anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God" "convenient"? Especially if you were to read the Bible and determine what is says is the nature and character of God.

Quote
To clarify: the punishment for sin is death (plus).  The plus part being eternal torture in one form or another depending on your sect I suppose.  This is actually a pretty common understanding, I wanted to be sure it was also yours as well.

Yes, there is physical death and then eternal torment.

Quote
Again, is there a 'gray area' sin?  Like a 'little sin' that doesn't result in eternal torture, is it pretty much just black and white?

Is telling a lie a sin?
Is talking to an atheist a sin?

It seems to me that if your rules are black and white then eventually you're going to break one, and suffer the penalty, but if the rule has gray area then it's just a suggestion rather than a rule.

Telling a lie is sin.  Talking to an atheist is a conversation.

Based on what Jesus said, I believe that there are degrees of punishment, but it will all be eternal:

Then he began to denounce the cities where most of his mighty works had been done, because they did not repent. “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. But I tell you, it will be more bearable on the day of judgment for Tyre and Sidon than for you. And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? You will be brought down to Hades. For if the mighty works done in you had been done in Sodom, it would have remained until this day. But I tell you that it will be more tolerable on the day of judgment for the land of Sodom than for you.” (Matthew 11:20-24, ESV)
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

Online Azdgari

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #243 on: December 31, 2013, 06:56:46 PM »
Yes, there is physical death and then eternal torment.

And unless you disagree with your god's judgment of what's right and just, you yourself must be glad for it.  It is, after all, right and just - no?
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Offline MadBunny

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #244 on: December 31, 2013, 07:04:30 PM »
Well your bible god is pretty fickle.  I'm sure you're perfectly aware that it's fairly easy to make the bible say almost anything you want it to say. [1]

For example there is a commandment against killing, yet plenty of commandments to stone people to death.

Does this mean that all the people who follow his commandment (to kill) are now bound for hell?  Have all the Christians in our military willingly given up their place in heaven?

If telling a lie is a sin, will you burn in hell for all eternity if you tell somebody they have a pretty baby, when they have only an average looking baby?  Or is that only the minor hell?  Raising the question of course of what all these other afterlife punishments are.

If you get a tattoo?
-------------------------------- - - - -

It's interesting that you think there are degrees of sin though.  That rather more than implies that you don't think the bible itself is absolute, which unless I'm mistaken is apparently also probably a sin.   

So how does one navigate this particular obstacle course?  I know that Catholics have their confession and priestly absolution, along with their celebration of the human sacrifice by eating the flesh and blood of the sacrifice.  I'm not aware of any particular mechanism in other sects that carry the same role.
 1. Including that there is no sin, and everybody, even the 'bad' people go to heaven.
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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #245 on: December 31, 2013, 07:07:53 PM »
The idea that the all-powerful, all-good, god Yahweh (the alleged deity of the bible) is morally perfect (and all loving) cannot be rationally defended while still maintaining that Satan is roaming the earth like a lion "seeking whom he may devour".

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.

Quote
So there is a double standard then? Are you trying to argue that your alleged God 'thing' can be self contradictory? Under what circumstance (any circumstance) is it morally justified to allow a 'lion' in your house to devour your children but at the same time say that you "love" your children? Further, how can you argue that we are "made in the image and likeness of God" if you think your alleged deity allows this? "Moral perfection" has absolutely no meaning if you admit that your alleged God can violate his own rules.

You are quite wrong in your assertion above. I do not claim to know more than this "Yahweh" imaginary thing of which you speak - b/c I don't think it is real. However, there is still a direct contradiction with your theology and you haven't resolved it just by spinning or rationalizing (aka - the "bigger purpose" argument - as that argument could be used by Muslims as well). Both attempts fail to demonstrate a resolution to the conflict in your theology. An all-loving being would not allow a lion to 'devour' his children. Would you?

If you're willing to admit that you wouldn't do it (and that it would be immoral for you to do so) then please demonstrate how it CAN be moral for your alleged God but not for you.

How can He allow His believers to be tempted and go through trials and tribulation? 

Because I believe the rest of the story:

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-4, ESV)

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. (James 1:12-14, ESV)

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. (Romans 4:1-5, ESV)

I'll stop there.  It's a perspective/worldview issue that shows how diverse our opinions are.

Quote
God allegedly created hell (a place for Satan) but then allows Satan and his minions out of hell to torment his alleged children. Such actions are neither moral nor loving.


Quote
What is your source for saying that God ever had satan and his minions in Hell ever?  The Bible doesn't say that they have ever been in Hell yet, but if you know of a verse that says so, please share it and I'll stand corrected.[/font]


Quote
You just misrpresented my argument. Please read it again. I said according to your bible God created hell for this alleged 'Satan' character, Matthew 25:41 and Revelation 20:7-10.

Now, is hell separation from God? If so, then Satan has been in hell since he and the angels were thrown out (in this myth).

Okay, now that you've provided more information, I can see your reasoning.

According to Job, Satan is free to enter into the presence of God.  See Job chapters 1 and 2. Satan roams the earth according to 1 Peter 5:8.

I don't know of any verses that say Satan has ever been in Hell.

One day Satan and his minions will be tossed into the lake of fire according to Revelation and Matthew, not Hell:

“Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels. (Matthew 25:41, ESV)

This eternal fire is the Lake of Fire.

And the beast was captured, and with it the false prophet who in its presence had done the signs by which he deceived those who had received the mark of the beast and those who worshiped its image. These two were thrown alive into the lake of fire that burns with sulfur. (Revelation 19:20, ESV, italics mine)

And when the thousand years are ended, Satan will be released from his prison and will come out to deceive the nations that are at the four corners of the earth, Gog and Magog, to gather them for battle; their number is like the sand of the sea. And they marched up over the broad plain of the earth and surrounded the camp of the saints and the beloved city, but fire came down from heaven and consumed them, and the devil who had deceived them was thrown into the lake of fire and sulfur where the beast and the false prophet were, and they will be tormented day and night forever and ever. (Revelation 21:7-10, ESV, italics mine)

Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone's name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire. (Revelation 20:14-15, ESV)

Quote
[/font]

Regarding your take on God tormenting His children, again 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.


Ah but see, you too have also passed moral judgment upon this 'god' conception you have in your mind. You have determined that this 'thing' is "good". How do you know that? By what process have you come to that conclusion? If your moral reasoning has been corrupted by "sin" then you have no reliable means for making that determination.

"If your moral reasoning has been corrupted by "sin" then you have no reliable means for making that determination." That actually works both ways.

But, you do make a good point.  How can I, with a reasoning flawed by sin, make the determination that God is good?  It is because of my sin that I can recognize His goodness. 

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The truth comes out - you believe you are morally superior to God. The problem of evil does not disprove God's existence nor His holiness nor His love for humanity.

Are you familiar with martial arts?  How do students become better skilled?  By facing opponents.  Sometimes facing opponents stronger and better skilled than they are.

Satan and his minions can be used by God for good in someone's life if it brings that person into a better understanding of God and their relationship to Him and others. God can use negatives to bring about much positive, but at the time it may seem like eternal torment, because we are limited in our understanding of God and our own selves.

Peace and grace.

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The truth has been out for a long time. Your God is imaginary and the problem of evil does in fact disprove your alleged deity, but of course that subject is not directly related to this OP. Morality is about well being and the minimization of harm. If you attempt to talk about anything else besides that, then you aren't talking about morality. In that sense, I am in fact morally superior to this wacko 'god' creature you believe in, and you know what, so are you. I'm guessing that you wouldn't allow a lion to devour your children or your family, would you? And yet you think your God would allow his children to be devoured, right?

I will await your response as to how you think this alleged God can allow these things and still be called loving, but until then this argument has been dealt with. The God of the bible is either not loving or imaginary. I go with option #2, just like I go with that option regarding all of the other man-made gods from history (as likely you do too!).


Doesn't it seem at least a little bit hypocritical that any time you think God did something that was beneficial to you, you can say he is "good" - but when horrific things occur you don't find yourself lifting your hands and saying, "Thank you God that you allowed such horror"? Did you say, "Praise Jesus for all those Nazi slaughter houses" or "Thank you God for the horror of Jeffrey Dahmer"? I don't think you did, but if so that would make you one sick individual who has sacrificed his own reasoning and moral sense for a mere belief in an old book.

No, Christians don't give thanks to God that evil happens, we give thanks to God that one day He will exact justice for all evil done.  We thank God that ultimately He is in control, even if we can't quite make sense of it.

Your God is not your standard of morality. You are.

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p.s. - Your martial arts analogy fails as well b/c w'ere talking about a lion against a child who cannot defend itself again such a thing (aka - an invisible demon vs a physical person). Never-mind the fact that the very concept of 'immaterial person' is incoherent, loving parents of martial arts students do not put their kids in the ring to fight with creatures that would kill them.

Ok, sorry for the poor analogy.  I guess parents don't put their children on the football field to get their necks broke or get fatal heatstroke either?
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 #246 on: December 31, 2013, 07:15:31 PM »
I don't believe in sin.  That's you.

I'm trying to get a clear idea of what you think sin actually is.  I mean, are you committing sin just by conversing with atheists instead of trying to stone us to death?
Is there more than one punishment, ANY punishment for sin?

I gave you an answer already.  Are you badgering me?  Moderators, are you taking notice of this?

Again, I'll type it out really s-l-o-w-l-y for you:  Sin is anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God (God of the Bible).  Other people say this is a clear explanation of my belief.  What part of "anything that you think, say, or do that does not please God" do you not understand (I know you don't believe that sin and God exists, that's not the question.)   Would it help if I put it in Spanish for you?

Spanish I don't think is necessary.  But what would be useful, I think (that would address what MadBunny is asking) is to at least begin a definitive list of what actually pleases/displease Yahweh.  Without such a list, as MadBunny says, it can become whatever you want it to be at any particular time.

How about Augustine's list:  "Love God, and do what you please."?

And no, it cannot become "whatever you want it to be at any particular time."  Rebellion against God in any form at any time in history never pleases God.  Self-exaltaion, selfishness, pride, arrogance, etc. never please God at any time.  Use your common sense please.

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I'm sure we've all seen the film with the psychopathic bad guy.  All his henchmen tiptoe around him, never quite sure what to say in case today is the day he doesn't like it (and of course he always gets his comeuppance because someone ends up not telling him something for fear of his reaction....but I digress!).

I'm equally sure that you in no way see Yahweh as that kind of being - he is a loving and GOOD creature, and would be devastated to think that the creatures he loves are in any way unclear about what is good and what is not - in this case, what is sin and what is not.  So I would expect - from a loving and good god - that his top priority would be an unambiguous list of what pleases him, and what does not.  So I would be grateful if you could make a start on that list with some specifics of sins, rather than the vague and (to the current unbeliever) frankly unhelpful "sin is whatever Yahweh doesn't like".

This is one area that is difficult to proceed in because of the vast difference and distance between our world views.  :(

We both have presuppositions.  You presuppose that you can pass moral judgment on God.  I presuppose that God is so vastly transcendent that the things I don't understand are just that, things I don't understand, but that God has His reasons and a higher good that He does not reveal.

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 #247 on: December 31, 2013, 07:25:08 PM »

Why does He need to come down and answer your questions?  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, 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.")

You won't understand why Yahweh is worthy of worship because you are predisposed to not want to know.  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.

Muslims, Mormons, Hindus, and countless others try to say this same thing to us non-believers. Your words are exceedingly ironic in that you came to the bible with an assumption that it was true (which was influenced by the culture of which you grew up - aka you started with your conclusion). The problem with your assessment though is that I (and many others here) believed like you do for nearly 20 years. I later discovered how irrational theology is and how Christians have to spin, rationalize, dodge, use confirmation bias, and/or lie to continue arguing for it.

These things are evidenced in you by your own words - aka the irrational arguments you chose to accept for deism first (namely an argument from ignorance/incredulity fallacy - likely among others) and then onto full superstition in the bible. How can you claim to be neutral and/or open-minded when you are wholly committed and uncritical of your own view? 


As I have said several times, I suffered from a case of "cultural Christianity from the time I was 12 until I was 38.  Then I became an unbeliever for nearly 5 years.  I believed that the Bible was nothing but ancient myths.  Then I believed for a year that there was a Creator, but He was the Deist Creator and that had no effect on my life. Nor did this Deist view validate the Bible in any way, as I did not associate the Creator with Bible-god. My conversion was at a time when I could not have been more inclined NOT to believe the Bible.

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Evidence here:
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I don't know why God chose to reveal Himself this way in different places in the Bible.  Since the Bible says that He is one God but expressed as the three Persons, then I guess He is just trying to help us understand Him.  Why does He call Himself Jehovah Jirah in one place, Jehovah Nissi in another, etc?  Each time it reveals something of His character.

The "trinity" is just one example of religious SPIN. The bible does not say "one god in three persons". You say that. If you were actually willing to be critical of this view you would accept it as a direct contradiction. 3 cannot equal 1, and that the bible says there is only one god but then mentions multiple gods. Your reinterpretation of it (and those of your predecessors) is a spin tactic b/c you started with the conclusion that it CAN'T be a contradiction (in fact the Jews and other Christians don't even accept it but that is where your confirmation bias begins). How convenient that you do this with all of your theological beliefs (assume that they can't be false and then mold/squash/reinterpret them to fit your prior theological commitments). Honest skepticism (the kind you would practice toward Islam, etc) says otherwise.

This is far from being open-minded. It is closed-minded in the highest degree b/c you have committed yourself to confirmation of your assumptions NO-MATTER-WHAT.

No, I actually struggled with the concept of the Trinity after God saved me in 1998.  Just because I am reconciled with the concept now does not mean I have always been. 

You and a few others in the Forum are guilty of engaging in some kind of self-projection, perhaps, in attributing to me things that aren't true.  You seem to know my entire life and how I have always thought, and what internal and external influences have caused me to be made in the image that you have made me in.  I don't approach you guys this way; I would appreciate the same treatment.
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 #248 on: December 31, 2013, 07:28:15 PM »
Yes, there is physical death and then eternal torment.

And unless you disagree with your god's judgment of what's right and just, you yourself must be glad for it.  It is, after all, right and just - no?

I am saddened that any would rebel against God and choose eternal torment.  I am glad that God is a God of mercy who offers forgiveness for the repentant but offers justice for those who reject Him.  I do not place the value of a human over the value of God's character or His right to be obeyed and worshiped.  I know this may be offensive to you, but I am trying to explain how I believe, which is a mainstream Christian view of this subject.
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 #249 on: December 31, 2013, 07:30:13 PM »
Well your bible god is pretty fickle.  I'm sure you're perfectly aware that it's fairly easy to make the bible say almost anything you want it to say. [1]

For example there is a commandment against killing, yet plenty of commandments to stone people to death.

Does this mean that all the people who follow his commandment (to kill) are now bound for hell?  Have all the Christians in our military willingly given up their place in heaven?

If telling a lie is a sin, will you burn in hell for all eternity if you tell somebody they have a pretty baby, when they have only an average looking baby?  Or is that only the minor hell?  Raising the question of course of what all these other afterlife punishments are.

If you get a tattoo?
-------------------------------- - - - -

It's interesting that you think there are degrees of sin though.  That rather more than implies that you don't think the bible itself is absolute, which unless I'm mistaken is apparently also probably a sin.   

So how does one navigate this particular obstacle course?  I know that Catholics have their confession and priestly absolution, along with their celebration of the human sacrifice by eating the flesh and blood of the sacrifice.  I'm not aware of any particular mechanism in other sects that carry the same role.
 1. Including that there is no sin, and everybody, even the 'bad' people go to heaven.

Are you wanting to have a discussion about why murder is a sin, but when God said "annihilate the Amalekites" that it is not a sin?
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

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #250 on: December 31, 2013, 08:04:06 PM »
gzusfreak:  It frankly sounds as if the god you believe in is just as fickle as any of the numerous pagan gods that you don't believe in.  "Killing another human being is a sin unless I tell you to."  So how do you know that he actually commands something?  I mean, where's the unambiguous, objective signal that he gives that can't be interpreted any other way than the one he intends?

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #251 on: December 31, 2013, 08:10:06 PM »
I am saddened that any would rebel against God and choose eternal torment.

Not remotely related to what I said.

I am glad that God is a God of mercy who offers forgiveness for the repentant but offers justice for those who reject Him.

So I was right.  If you believe that Madbunny, or anyone else, gets sent to hell to roast for all eternity - you are glad of it.

I do not place the value of a human over the value of God's character or His right to be obeyed and worshiped.  I know this may be offensive to you, but I am trying to explain how I believe, which is a mainstream Christian view of this subject.

I do understand that your beliefs require you to hold the most ultimately passionate hatred imaginable for those who disobey your god.  That is what is required in order to desire that sort of punishment for them, after all.

As long as you acknowledge the incredible amounts of hatred involved in your beliefs, I'll be done here.
The highest moral human authority is copied by our Gandhi neurons through observation.

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #252 on: December 31, 2013, 08:11:53 PM »
Gf how do you view war....ww1 ww2 Iraq,Israel ?  War is sometimes  the only solution a Christian president has at his disposal,does this anger a god,or does said god see it as just?
There's no right there's no wrong,there's just popular opinion (Brad Pitt as Jeffery Goines in 12 monkeys)

Offline MadBunny

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #253 on: December 31, 2013, 08:20:07 PM »

Are you wanting to have a discussion about why murder is a sin, but when God said "annihilate the Amalekites" that it is not a sin?

I'd say start small.  Why is killing a sin, yet stoning somebody to death not a sin?
Certainly however your example fits within the discussion just fine though.

I am curious to see where you take this.  Most Christians I talk to like to use the new testament of their bible as a 'get out of contradiction card'.[1]
 1. Hmm, I should make one of those..
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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #254 on: December 31, 2013, 08:50:38 PM »

Are you wanting to have a discussion about why murder is a sin, but when God said "annihilate the Amalekites" that it is not a sin?

I'd say start small.  Why is killing a sin, yet stoning somebody to death not a sin?
Certainly however your example fits within the discussion just fine though.

I am curious to see where you take this.  Most Christians I talk to like to use the new testament of their bible as a 'get out of contradiction card'.[1]
 1. Hmm, I should make one of those..
if he keeps moving the goalposts how can you win a dispute?
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Offline gzusfreke

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #255 on: December 31, 2013, 09:06:32 PM »
I am saddened that any would rebel against God and choose eternal torment.

Not remotely related to what I said.

Its hard to say, since you edited that part out.  Getting snippy wid it!


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I am glad that God is a God of mercy who offers forgiveness for the repentant but offers justice for those who reject Him.

So I was right.  If you believe that Madbunny, or anyone else, gets sent to hell to roast for all eternity - you are glad of it.

I do not place the value of a human over the value of God's character or His right to be obeyed and worshiped.  I know this may be offensive to you, but I am trying to explain how I believe, which is a mainstream Christian view of this subject.

I do understand that your beliefs require you to hold the most ultimately passionate hatred imaginable for those who disobey your god.  That is what is required in order to desire that sort of punishment for them, after all.

If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen. And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother. (1 John 4:20-21, ESV)

I love you Azdgari and desire that God would save you and that you could find eternal life in Him.  That last thing I want for you is for you to suffer eternal damnation.  But the Jesus said that our love for Him must be of such quality that even our love for our own family would appear as hate in comparison.  I would be wrong to not want God to show justice for those who refuse His mercy.  What is He left with if they refuse His mercy except to be just?

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As long as you acknowledge the incredible amounts of hatred involved in your beliefs, I'll be done here.

Your portray a straw man, but I'm ok with you being done here.
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 #256 on: December 31, 2013, 09:12:35 PM »
Gf how do you view war....ww1 ww2 Iraq,Israel ?  War is sometimes  the only solution a Christian president has at his disposal,does this anger a god,or does said god see it as just?

As he sat on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what will be the sign of your coming and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered them, “See that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and they will lead many astray. And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not alarmed, for this must take place, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.
“Then they will deliver you up to tribulation and put you to death, and you will be hated by all nations for my name's sake. And then many will fall away and betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will arise and lead many astray. And because lawlessness will be increased, the love of many will grow cold. (Matthew 24:3-12, ESV)


Jesus, talking with His disciples before His crucifixion, was telling them about the end of times.  He recognized (not the same as ordered or promoted) that wars would take place.  Why? Because lawlessness will be increased - meaning people will act more wickedly.  People will act on their flawed sin nature.

As for me passing judgment on whether a war was just or not, even though I've studied history, it was only in junior high and high school many, many years ago and I learned what I needed to make a good grade.  I am in no way an expert historian or subject matter expert on any war.  I don't have enough information to make the judgment call that you wish me to make.
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 #257 on: December 31, 2013, 09:13:49 PM »

Are you wanting to have a discussion about why murder is a sin, but when God said "annihilate the Amalekites" that it is not a sin?

I'd say start small.  Why is killing a sin, yet stoning somebody to death not a sin?
Certainly however your example fits within the discussion just fine though.

I am curious to see where you take this.  Most Christians I talk to like to use the new testament of their bible as a 'get out of contradiction card'.[1]
 1. Hmm, I should make one of those..


Ok, starting 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 MadBunny

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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #258 on: December 31, 2013, 09:18:10 PM »
if he keeps moving the goalposts how can you win a dispute?

He's the one trying to convince others that a set of rules written for bronze age gatherers regarding a fictional entity are somehow valid.  It's roughly analogous to discussing the metallurgical properties of Mithril.

I'm more curious about how he manages to maintain his own cognitive dissonance on the issue. 
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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #259 on: December 31, 2013, 11:44:09 PM »
Is war right or wrong...... Yes or no.... Is there ever a reason to invade a territory for the purpose to kill another human?
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Re: Divine Indifference and Moral Character (Humans vs. God)
« Reply #260 on: January 01, 2014, 02:52:16 AM »
I love you Azdgari ...

No, you are lying through your teeth - though avoiding the sin of honesty, at least.

You cannot both love me and feel that I deserve to be burned for eternity.  These are mutually exclusive feelings.  You're lying about one of them.  Pick.
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