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Dead Zone => The Bottomless Pit => Topic started by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 07:27:37 PM

Title: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 07:27:37 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.

Some things you need to know:
1. I love to debate. If I seem like I'm getting heated it's not because I'm angry it's just because I get in a certain mode.  :) Please forgive me if I seem rude or angry.
2. If you're smart or sarcastic with me I'll probably be the same way back, not because I'm offended or angry, just because I love sarcasm.  :D
3. Please support your claims/views with either your logic or evidence. I can't refute or agree with claims which I don't understand or know why you've drawn them.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Nick on January 06, 2011, 07:35:30 PM
I don't believe that an imaginary sky daddy exist but if one did why does He hate amputees?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 06, 2011, 07:42:12 PM
My biggest question is not about your god but about how people can believe that stuff. Can't christians see that they are following a myth just the way the Dogon people of Africa and the hindu's of India and the new age pagans of today, and ancient greeks and romans with their plethora of gods. were or are following a myth? Can't you understand that each person who believes a myth is just like you, no matter which myth they believe.

Does your religion make you feel so good it must be true? Well so do other religions make other people feel good. Coincidence? I don't think so. Happy thoughts breed happy thoughts. But god stories don't breed gods.

Explain why your belief is so special.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 06, 2011, 07:47:38 PM
Since you've directed discussion here:

If they were completely subjective across cultures, societies, and religions then they would just be morals. My argument is that there are morals that extend across all of humanity as a whole. A sense of right and wrong that everyone has. This is the moral law
How do you determine whether a moral law is right or wrong?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Odin on January 06, 2011, 07:48:33 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God.

I've asked this question many times, so I'll ask it of you.  I assume you don't believe that ALL the Bible is true, and to be followed to the literal meanings.  For example, you probably don't believe in death as punishment for working on the Sabbath, or stoning of disobedient children.  You probably don't really believe that the graves opened up after the resurrection and the holy dead men arose and appeared to many in the holy city, as in Matt 27:52-53. 

So how do you, a normal human being, take the inspired word of the Creator of the Universe, the Great I Am, the Alpha and the Omega, the god of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, and decide which parts to believe and follow and which parts to disbelieve and reject? 

Odin, King of the Gods
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 06, 2011, 07:51:00 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.

Welcome.

Given that I strongly suspect that your gods do not exist I do not have any problems or concerns with them.

You don't stay awake at night wondering what Darth Vader is going to do next do you?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 06, 2011, 07:52:12 PM
What differentiates your god (really godS if you're a christian) from any other gods throughout mankinds history?  Why should I believe in your god over any of the others?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 07:53:11 PM
Why did god himself(according to the bible) kill millions of people,just because he was unhappy?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 07:56:43 PM
why did god have siblings?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: MadBunny on January 06, 2011, 08:02:14 PM
What differentiates your god (really godS if you're a christian) from any other gods throughout mankinds history?  Why should I believe in your god over any of the others?

This actually can be a very pointed question.

In short, I like to ask people what criteria they would use to deny the existence of OTHER religious figures, and if they are willing to use the same standard on their own.

As a simple example: Why don't you believe that Zeus is the King of the Gods, and sits atop Mt Olympus, with his pantheon?
Ultimately what you wind up with is a 'winnowing' of the apologia, anyplace where the same exact argument can be applied to more than one god or deity throw it out, and continue till you've reached the core of the argument and look at it rationally.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Larissa238 on January 06, 2011, 08:03:31 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.

I just posted this somewhere else, but I can tell you one of the things that made the lightbulb go off in my head. It has to do with Deut 22:28-29.

http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy+22:28-29&version=NIV (http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Deuteronomy+22:28-29&version=NIV)
Quote
28 If a man happens to meet a virgin who is not pledged to be married and rapes her and they are discovered, 29 he shall pay her father fifty shekels[a] of silver. He must marry the young woman, for he has violated her. He can never divorce her as long as he lives.

Sorry to make this personal, but I don't see any other way. I was raped by my stepbrother. He didn't get caught and it's almost impossible to prove rape in a US court, so I didn't pursue legal action. I have PTSD from this. I was ashamed for many, many years, feeling that it was somehow my fault. I was extensively abused (physically, sexually, mentally... there was no part of me that remained okay after that). I *still* sometimes battle the idea that me being abused was my fault. I know it's not most of the time, but sometimes when I'm weak I get that little voice inside my head saying things like "He did this to you because you looked at him in a way he thought was an advance" or other bullshit like that. I was 5. I didn't know any better. This lasted till I was 14. He stole my innocence. I'm not talking about my virginity per se, I'm saying he stole my childhood. So excuse me if I get passionate about the subject of rape.

So, back to Deut. If a man rapes a woman and gets caught, he has to pay her dad some money and then he gets to marry her. They can never get divorced. My heart goes out to all the poor women who were subjected to this bullshit. In this verse, the so-called good and moral Christian god signs away the life of the woman. The poor woman now gets to be raped for the rest of her life. She has no out, God has spoken. How the hell does someone think that this is okay? It's one of the most disgusting things I have heard of in my life.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 08:07:23 PM
^^^ so rape is ok with biblegod as long as you pay off Daddy. Then the women gets victimized again having to marry the man that RAPED her,that is also OK with god.Larrissa sorry to hear about this
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 08:24:17 PM
well JT?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 06, 2011, 08:27:26 PM
Wow.  He asked!

Why can't non-believers just die, as opposed to going to burn in Hell for all eternity?  I mean, what is the problem with just denying us access to the Kingdom?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 06, 2011, 08:28:23 PM
God Dam Larissa238!!!!  I realize you are reletively new to this forum and I'm glad you're here, but we seem to learn something very, very deep and personal with you every other post!  I can't beleive you make up this stuff up but I'm almost surprised you haven't used turning to god as an excuse for your lifes many challeges.  Anyways, I didn't mean to go on a tangent but I'm glad you found this forum and feel comfortable in your own skin here!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: MadBunny on January 06, 2011, 08:28:46 PM
^^^ so rape is ok with biblegod as long as you pay off Daddy. Then the women gets victimized again having to marry the man that RAPED her,that is also OK with god.Larrissa sorry to hear about this

Well, it's all contextual see.
If you base a womans value on the state of her hymen you get this sort of thing.
We still do it today to some degree.  We just call it a 'Dowry'. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dowry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dowry)

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 08:32:37 PM
^^^ so rape is ok with biblegod as long as you pay off Daddy. Then the women gets victimized again having to marry the man that RAPED her,that is also OK with god.Larrissa sorry to hear about this

Well, it's all contextual see.
If you base a womans value on the state of her hymen you get this sort of thing.
We still do it today to some degree.  We just call it a 'Dowry'. 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dowry (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dowry)
but this Dowry thing is more of a class system thing and less of a god thing....and according to the bible this behaviour is ok as long as someone with a penis gets paid
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: MadBunny on January 06, 2011, 08:39:44 PM
That's true, but it's a way of directly putting a dollar value on a womans 'intact' status, which ultimately is what the bible seems to be concerned about which is why I used it as an example.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 08:41:11 PM
Ahh understood
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 06, 2011, 08:56:08 PM
1. What would happen if you stopped believing tomorrow?
2. Whatever your answer, why isn't it happening to me?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 08:57:32 PM
Sorry, I'm not going to be able to respond as often as I'd like or as specifically as I like.

To Larissa concerning the verse in Deuteronomy about rape:
http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm (http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm)
That verse is not actually referring to rape as the website will show. I'm really sorry for all that happened though.

The other big issue was why Christianity is right while other religions are wrong. This would take a very long time to discuss all the many reasons I believe this but here's a very simple answer (I can go into more detail if you'd like me to):
Let's say at least hypothetically that God does exist (I can argue scientifically why he must exist if you'd like but I won't do that this time). If there really is a God, then one religion must be right and the others must be wrong because they are all different in some way. And every other religion (unless there's one I don't know about) is based on works getting you into Heaven. Basically if you're a good person your whole life you go to Heaven/ reach enlightenment and if you're a bad person you go to Hell/ come back as a cockroach through reincarnation. Christianity is the only religion that offers the chance to get to Heaven through grace alone. And this is the only way that being allowed in Heaven makes sense. How good do you have to be to get into Heaven? How bad do you have to be to be sent to Hell? (Christianity is also the only religion I know of where people aren't sent to Hell by God; instead they are offered grace from Him) How can a holy and perfect God accept sinful/bad people into Heaven without a form of redemption? How can your works save you if they are the very thing that condemn you? Most importantly if works are the way into Heaven then every other religion in the world got it right but they all have different gods. So which god is the real god who judges works? But Christianity is the one religion that is different. It doesn't require you to have done enough good things to get into Heaven. It's based on grace. Also, another huge difference is that our God is alive. Justin Martyr (non-Christian extra-biblical author) wrote Dialogue with Trypho which said that the tomb of Jesus was empty, although he claimed the disciples had stolen the body. Other extra-biblical sources confirm that the tomb was empty. But how/why would the disciples steal the body? There were two Roman guards who knew they would die if the body was stolen and never claimed the disciples stole the body. Then the disciples were all killed for their beliefs (all but one who was boiled alive and then exiled). Why would the disciples die claiming in something that they themselves made up?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: MadBunny on January 06, 2011, 09:02:52 PM
Good post JT812, thank you.

Yes, it is good to take things and look at them from in a comparative way.  Your bible (assuming that you're a Christian) doesn't allow for 'just nice' people to get into heaven, the whole 'sacrifice of Jesus thing' either results in Universal Salvation, meaning that everybody get it equally or it's an extortion, meaning it wasn't much of a 'grace'.

I don't want to get you swamped in this thread like you are in the others, so I'll ask you a simple question: Is Hitler in Heaven, according to the criteria in your bible?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: sammylama on January 06, 2011, 09:04:59 PM
Other extra-biblical sources confirm that the tomb was empty . . .


Whoa!  You know I just can't let this slide. 

Please, go into further detail on those "extra-biblical sources." 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 06, 2011, 09:05:56 PM
This thread is a bad idea, IMO.  There is too much breadth of questions for one person to answer in any decent amount of time, and the thread will be way too confused for any of the questions to be investigated in any depth.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 09:09:27 PM
what are the specific terms in which your god offers grace,what excludes you from grace specifically?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Larissa238 on January 06, 2011, 09:21:01 PM
God Dam Larissa238!!!!  I realize you are reletively new to this forum and I'm glad you're here, but we seem to learn something very, very deep and personal with you every other post!  I can't beleive you make up this stuff up but I'm almost surprised you haven't used turning to god as an excuse for your lifes many challeges.  Anyways, I didn't mean to go on a tangent but I'm glad you found this forum and feel comfortable in your own skin here!

I made this thread just for you: http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17267.0.html (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17267.0.html)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 06, 2011, 09:24:15 PM
This thread is a bad idea, IMO.  There is too much breadth of questions for one person to answer in any decent amount of time, and the thread will be way too confused for any of the questions to be investigated in any depth.

I agree. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ashe on January 06, 2011, 09:28:02 PM
Other extra-biblical sources confirm that the tomb was empty . . .


Whoa!  You know I just can't let this slide. 

Please, go into further detail on those "extra-biblical sources." 

That, and why God "must" exist, scientifically.

Although I echo some of the others in saying this is probably a very bad idea. This thread is going to be swamped so fast.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 06, 2011, 09:31:53 PM
I agree. Tomb empty. Scientifically god must exist. Quite a wide range. Separate threads, one on each, would be really really nice.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 06, 2011, 09:41:12 PM
Justin Martyr (non-Christian extra-biblical author) wrote Dialogue with Trypho which said that the tomb of Jesus was empty, although he claimed the disciples had stolen the body.
I'm sorry, but why are you writing things that are not true? You're off to a bad start.

Justin Martyr was an early Christian apologist and also later gained the status of a saint. He also never said anything like that the tomb was empty or that the disciples had stolen it.
His "Dialogue with Trypho" was written as a piece to deduct from scripture why Jesus should be considered the Christ and why Christianity is the new Law. In the introduction to this piece of apologia he goes through several scenarios of what could have happened to the body of Jesus (like that it could have been stolen) but that those notions should be dismissed because God is truly God and resurrection would be worthy of God, so that must have happened.


Quote
Why would the disciples die claiming in something that they themselves made up?
Why would the cult leaders of the Heaven's Gate sect commit suicide alongside their followers to get to the UFO hidden behind the Hale-Bopp comet if they knew they made it all up?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Emily on January 06, 2011, 09:42:37 PM
...this should be fun.

JT, I think you've bitten off more than you can chew. Good luck. BTW: When it comes to debating the members here can be pretty brutal (based on your other thread I highly doubt you've encountered some of the great atheists minds on this board. This might be a whole new world of debate for you)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 06, 2011, 10:03:18 PM
I'm gonna let the other guys field the bulk of your response #20, and I'm gonna focus on this last little tidbit:

Quote
Then the disciples were all killed for their beliefs (all but one who was boiled alive and then exiled). Why would the disciples die claiming in something that they themselves made up?

Even by biblical accounts, this ain't true.  Judas has 2 contradictory accounts of his death, but neither involve martyrdom.

And of course, John supposedly died of old age.

As far as the rest goes, who knows how they died?  The only reports of them dying are based on legends and not put down in writing until in some cases centuries after they were supposedly killed.  And these accounts are pretty suspect to say the least.  For example, supposedly Peter was crucified (although no mention of whether of whether he was given a chance to recant his beliefs or even whether or not he tried to).  But this was documented in the acts of Peter.  Even the church doesn't consider this too reliable, apparently, since it didn't make the final cut into the bible.  It also contains stories of Peter making dogs talk and resurrecting dead fish.  Does that sound like a reliable source to you.

Why don't you enlighten us with how you know how the apostles died.  Please include all contemporary accounts documented at that time, as well as evidence that they were given the option to recant their beliefs but refused.  Otherwise, can we dispense with this nonsense of "all the apostles died for their beliefs"?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 06, 2011, 10:18:23 PM
Ooh! Oooh! I've got a question!!!

What's up with the whole "mutilation of baby cocks" thing???

It's supposed to be a covenant, right? Shouldn't a *grown man* make that decision for himself? Maybe something like a batmitzfah (sp?) or a gang initiation?

Like, hey little Timmy. You'll be 14 and a man soon. Will you stay in the church, make the covenant with god, and slice off all the skin on the end of your ding a ling?

And then little Timmy gets to say "Why, SURE dad! Of COURSE I will!" or "WHA!? HELL NO!!! LET ME OUT OF HERE!!!"

I dunno, see... It strikes me that forcing a helpless baby to make deals with the almighty creator of all existance (who incidentally seems to have *many* strange fetishes about goats and blood and genitals and whatnot) when they're incapable of exercising their "free will" and making that decision, and then on top of it hacking on their dicks when they can't defend themselves... It's, umm.. Well, weird. Really, REALLY weird.  :-\

I mean, there's A LOT of weird stuff in that old book... But the junk trimming has always struck me as amongst the oddest.

And it's become "normal", which is freaking SCARY man! Like what if some religion cropped up where an infant had to be butt-plugged with some sort of holy device in some bizarre ritual? The practitioners would be jailed immediately, and the entire country would be in an uproar about it! But yet we let CIRCUMCISION slide like it's nothing! In MY eyes, having never been a Christian and being on the outside looking in (but still being cut as a baby (which I'm still pissed about)), butt-plugging an infant would STILL be less of a crime than CUTTING PIECES OF HIS DICK OFF.

You know there are Rabbis who apparently SUCK THE BLOOD OFF with their MOUTHS? Big story out of New York... Something like a few dozen babies contracted hepatitis from it I think. And only THEN, when the babies got sick, did it become an issue.

So yeah. Baby cock mutilation in the name of the Lord. WTF??? What kind of a weird-o supreme being insists on something like that???

 3, 2, 1, GO!!!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 10:20:32 PM
I don't want to get you swamped in this thread like you are in the others, so I'll ask you a simple question: Is Hitler in Heaven, according to the criteria in your bible?

Not to avoid the question at all, but I didn't even know he proclaimed to be a Christian. But even if he did I would say no. Because all though we are saved by faith and grace alone, the result of true salvation is always works.
And I agree with everyone, this is a lot to cover and I don't have time to do it all, but I'd like to at least hit some of the big stuff, but thanks for being understanding that I can't cover it all  ;D

Justin Martyr was an early Christian apologist and also later gained the status of a saint. He also never said anything like that the tomb was empty or that the disciples had stolen it.
His "Dialogue with Trypho" was written as a piece to deduct from scripture why Jesus should be considered the Christ and why Christianity is the new Law. In the introduction to this piece of apologia he goes through several scenarios of what could have happened to the body of Jesus (like that it could have been stolen) but that those notions should be dismissed because God is truly God and resurrection would be worthy of God, so that must have happened.

Quote
Why would the disciples die claiming in something that they themselves made up?
Why would the cult leaders of the Heaven's Gate sect commit suicide alongside their followers to get to the UFO hidden behind the Hale-Bopp comet if they knew they made it all up?
You're right about the Dialogue with Trypho, I'm really sorry about that. But Toledoth Yeshu is an extra-biblical source that does confirm that the tomb was empty. Plus the Jewish Officials of the time were doing all they could to stop the spread of Christianity. If the apostles were claiming that the tomb was empty and Jesus was alive all the Jewish officials would have had to do was bring the body out of the tomb. They would have done anything to stop the spread of Christianity (considering they killed tons of people for it) but they could not produce the body of Jesus.

As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity. This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful, source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know, and was not controlled by our current scientific laws. I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer. That's irrelevant though. The most important scientific problem with evolution is creation itself. In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance. It also required a source of energy that did not exist at one time to begin to exist (spontaneous generation). This phenomenon would be considered impossible to happen at another time in our universe and in order for it to happen whatever created all that we know must have exceeded the physical limits of everything we know. That entity would have to be a divine or at least supernatural presence, namely God. I've heard some make the claim that the Universe could be eternal but that is impossible because the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics states that there is a gradual loss of energy in our universe meaning at some point there will be no energy left and at another point there had to be a "full" amount of energy (the beginning of the universe). I've had many people argue that the impossibility of creation by evolution does not equal creation by God. But my argument is not that evolution simply did not create the universe, it's that a supernatural force is the only possibility to the creation of our universe. That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: sammylama on January 06, 2011, 10:22:25 PM
This thread is a bad idea, IMO.  There is too much breadth of questions for one person to answer in any decent amount of time, and the thread will be way too confused for any of the questions to be investigated in any depth.

Reminds me of a thread our pal UniversityPastor started a while back . . .

Still, with god as a co-pilot, and a little divine intervention, keeping up should be a breeze for christian folk . . .
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ashe on January 06, 2011, 10:23:31 PM
What created God?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 06, 2011, 10:27:13 PM
What created God?

The Bigger Bang.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Emily on January 06, 2011, 10:28:26 PM
In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance.

What does the second law state. (I ask this because many creationists ignore one important, three word phrase, which the second law includes)

Note: The earth is not an isolated system.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 10:39:20 PM
It's supposed to be a covenant, right? Shouldn't a *grown man* make that decision for himself? FORCING a helpless baby to make deals with the almighty creator of all existance when they're incapable of exercising their "free will" and making that decision, and then on top of it hacking on their dicks when they can't defend themselves... It's, umm.. Well, weird. Really, REALLY weird.  :-\

Well like you said it was part of a covenant with God, but it's really not that weird. I don't know where you live but there are TONS of people in America who were circumcised as babies with no choice but the choice of their parents.


Why don't you enlighten us with how you know how the apostles died.  Please include all contemporary accounts documented at that time, as well as evidence that they were given the option to recant their beliefs but refused.  Otherwise, can we dispense with this nonsense of "all the apostles died for their beliefs"?
Pliny's Letters to Trajan and other extra-biblical sources such as Tacitus' Annals, book XV (I can find more if you want) confirm that anyone professing to be a Christian were to be put to death. If they renounced their faith they were allowed to live. Certainly the apostles would have been at the top of this list and certainly nobody would have continued to believe if the apostles themselves renounced their beliefs. Further, if the apostles had renounced their beliefs this certainly would have been written down and any rumors of their martyrs would have been crushed because there was a large movement to stop the spread of Christianity.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 06, 2011, 10:42:44 PM
What created God?
There is no need for a creator of God because he is eternal. But we know that the universe cannot be eternal.

What does the second law state. (I ask this because many creationists ignore one important, three word phrase, which the second law includes)

Note: The earth is not an isolated system.

That usable energy is transferred to unusable energy over time. It would probably just be easier if you told me the three word phrase, haha
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 06, 2011, 10:42:58 PM

Well like you said it was part of a covenant with God, but it's really not that weird. I don't know where you live but there are TONS of people in America who were circumcised as babies with no choice but the choice of their parents.


My bold.  Circumcision is unnecessary, do you understand?  It has absolutely no basis for being done, outside of ancient religious beliefs, and now, according to you, popularity?  If Jesus jumped off of a cliff...oh, never mind.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ashe on January 06, 2011, 10:43:21 PM
Certainly the apostles would have been at the top of this list and certainly nobody would have continued to believe if the apostles themselves renounced their beliefs. Further, if the apostles had renounced their beliefs this certainly would have been written down and any rumors of their martyrs would have been crushed because there was a large movement to stop the spread of Christianity.

You say "certainly" for things you can't have certainty for.
You have absolutely no grounds to say that "certainly" nobody would have continued to believe. You just don't know that. People have believed stupid things in the past for stupid reasons; they still believe stupid things for stupid reasons; they continue to believe stupid things for stupid reasons. The cults of the world confirm this.

Your logic is as shaky as your science.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: sammylama on January 06, 2011, 10:44:58 PM
But Toledoth Yeshu is an extra-biblical source that does confirm that the tomb was empty.

I urge you to go here (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Toledot_Yeshu) and do a little bit of research on what you have just claimed.  Your standards would have to be fairly lax to accept a manuscript likely constructed between the 4th - 6th century as a viable source for the supposed "empty tomb."  Also, which version were you referring to?  There are many.

Quote
Plus the Jewish Officials of the time were doing all they could to stop the spread of Christianity. If the apostles were claiming that the tomb was empty and Jesus was alive all the Jewish officials would have had to do was bring the body out of the tomb. They would have done anything to stop the spread of Christianity (considering they killed tons of people for it) but they could not produce the body of Jesus.

Please provide your source(s) for this information and go into a little more detail.  For instance, what, exactly, were the Jewish Officials doing to stop the spread of christianity (instead of saying "all they could do").

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ashe on January 06, 2011, 10:45:17 PM
What created God?
There is no need for a creator of God because he is eternal. But we know that the universe cannot be eternal.

The universe as we know it cannot be eternal.
We have no idea what the universe was before it was the universe, or before it had the properties it has today.

On the other hand, you stipulate that something much more complex than the universe could ever be is eternal (without anything but your opinion to buttress this). Special Pleading, party of one? Special pleading, your table is ready.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 06, 2011, 10:48:18 PM
As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity. This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful, source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know, and was not controlled by our current scientific laws. I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer. That's irrelevant though. The most important scientific problem with evolution is creation itself. In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance. It also required a source of energy that did not exist at one time to begin to exist (spontaneous generation). This phenomenon would be considered impossible to happen at another time in our universe and in order for it to happen whatever created all that we know must have exceeded the physical limits of everything we know. That entity would have to be a divine or at least supernatural presence, namely God. I've heard some make the claim that the Universe could be eternal but that is impossible because the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics states that there is a gradual loss of energy in our universe meaning at some point there will be no energy left and at another point there had to be a "full" amount of energy (the beginning of the universe). I've had many people argue that the impossibility of creation by evolution does not equal creation by God. But my argument is not that evolution simply did not create the universe, it's that a supernatural force is the only possibility to the creation of our universe. That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.

I'm guessing you're an artist because you're really good at drawing conclusions.  :)

This is the sort of thing where we'd like to have references. I've been reading a number of scientific magazines and web sites for years,  including plenty of physics and astronomy sources, and nothing I've ever read (outside of unqualified creationist garbage) has ever made these claims, that I  know of.

Pretending something is impossible unless god did it doesn't impress me much. Scientists are gradually whittling down the unknowns in physics and as of yet they haven't found any indication of something so fantastic it has to be called god. Unless you can show me your sources, I'm going to have to just flat say you are wrong.

In this instance you're sort of like a 'D' student describing everything you know about science and proclaiming you understand everything. Those of us who studied a little harder aren't going to be giving you any breaks.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 06, 2011, 10:49:14 PM
It's supposed to be a covenant, right? Shouldn't a *grown man* make that decision for himself? FORCING a helpless baby to make deals with the almighty creator of all existance when they're incapable of exercising their "free will" and making that decision, and then on top of it hacking on their dicks when they can't defend themselves... It's, umm.. Well, weird. Really, REALLY weird.  :-\

Well like you said it was part of a covenant with God, but it's really not that weird. I don't know where you live but there are TONS of people in America who were circumcised as babies with no choice but the choice of their parents.

Yes, it IS weird. YOU'RE CUTTING PIECES OFF A BABY'S DICK. WITHOUT IT'S PERMISSION. FOR RITUALISTIC PURPOSES!!!

In what possible reality is that NOT weird!? What is wrong with you!!??  :o

I'm AWARE it's very common. But you're totally ignoring what I'm asking. You're instead telling me what I already know.




*What kind of God asks such a thing? Would YOU ask such a thing of somebody???

"Hey Marty. I know you said you'd help me move this weekend... But I'm gonna need you to go ahead and slice off the tip of your penis to know you're serious."

???? I dunno man. Sounds like ancient bronze-age desert dwelling goat-herder superstition to me. And not so much the mandate of some perfect, all powerful, timeless deity.

 Especially when you throw in all the other stuff about goats, animal sacrifice, slavery, virgin-sold-to-her-rapist policy, etc.




*Where does that child's "free will" come into play? He has no choice in the matter.

I would put forward that it's done this way because the clergy knows that if they DID wait until the child was old enough to make this decision for themselves, they'd see one DRASTIC drop in church attendance. See, according to your religion, it's *required*. But very few sane person would volunteer for such a thing. Only the MOST devote bible beater would do so.

So what do you do? You do it when they're defenseless INFANTS with no say in the matter.

Real classy.  &)

If you are a god, and it's SO important, and you have no intention of giving the individual a choice in the matter, why not just snap your fingers and change the human genome so that foreskins just <POOF!> dissapear from Christian peni? Why put it in the hands of the parents?

What possible PURPOSE does it even serve? It's supposed to be this big agreement between god and man, but it's done (as I've said, MUST be done) before the person even has the capacity to understand the magnitude of the arrangement.

I'd further suggest that having to make the choice YOURSELF, as a young adult, would be in every possible way more effective in ensuring the individual remembers the alleged importance of it.

Seriously. I want you to think about this. Aside from physically branding you as a Christian/Jew for LIFE, and aside from the fact that the overwhelming majority of young adults/adults would leave the church altogether before volunteering for such a thing, it not only serves literally no purpose what-so-ever to do it when they're a baby, but it effectively removes all meaning from this so called "covenant", since it's not so mch a "covenant" as it is a FORCED practice on a defenseless baby.


*If a religion popped up over night that encouraged anally violating an infant with a piece of religious iconography during some bizarre ritual, and "TONS of people" started doing it to their kids... You wouldn't think that's a little WEIRD to say the least?

And anally violating a baby is no worse than, again, CUTTING PIECES OFF OF IT'S GENITALS. It's the exact same level of sick. Yet you've been told by your religion that there's "nothing weird about it", and never questioned it. That would bother the hell out of me if I were you.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 10:50:05 PM
The earth and the sun are not eternal.....stars eventually die,planets get hit by space debris
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 10:53:00 PM
how bout addressing some of my questions like why god had siblings?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 06, 2011, 10:58:09 PM
how bout addressing some of my questions like why god had siblings?

I'd like to see an answer to that too. And wasn't Yahweh married at one point? lol
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 06, 2011, 10:59:05 PM
Pliny's Letters to Trajan and other extra-biblical sources such as Tacitus' Annals, book XV (I can find more if you want) confirm that anyone professing to be a Christian were to be put to death. If they renounced their faith they were allowed to live. Certainly the apostles would have been at the top of this list and certainly nobody would have continued to believe if the apostles themselves renounced their beliefs. Further, if the apostles had renounced their beliefs this certainly would have been written down and any rumors of their martyrs would have been crushed because there was a large movement to stop the spread of Christianity.

Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.

None of your "certainly"s above are at all certain.  They are just you reading between the lines and inserting what you really want to be true.

By the way regarding the rest of post 20:

I'm gonna assume that you have no evidence forthcoming on how the apostles died.  So, regarding the rest of post#20:

You have not offered scientific evidence for god.  You have made a false statement (the same "more and more scientists BS) followed by a complete misrepresentation of the big bang and the laws of thermodynamics, and finishing with an argument from incredulity.  Not scientific evidence.

And this whole nonsense of how xtianity is the only religion where you get to heaven by grace is not true.  The same concepts exist in Hinduism and Islam to name two.  And many religions throughout mankinds history did not have a heaven and hell.

And this "god is alive" stuff, I'm not following.  Are you suggesting for a moment that xtianity is the only religion involving anthropomorphication?  Really?

I am not a Master debater like you, but shouldn't the first rule be to had your facts straight before making statements?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 06, 2011, 11:02:54 PM
in the few hours he has been here he has not answered one question completly
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Omen on January 06, 2011, 11:04:02 PM
Why does Jewish messianic prophecy and eschatology have absolutely nothing to do with Christianity?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_eschatology (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jewish_eschatology)

Most of the textual requirements concerning the messiah, what he will do, and what will be done during his reign are located within the Book of Isaiah, although requirements are mentioned in other prophets as well.

    * The Sanhedrin will be re-established (Isaiah 1:26)
    * Once he is King, leaders of other nations will look to him for guidance (Isaiah 2:4)
    * The whole world will worship the One God of Israel (Isaiah 2:17)
    * He will be descended from King David (Isaiah 11:1) via King Solomon (1 Chron. 22:8–10)
    * The Moshiach will be a man of this world, an observant Jew with "fear of God" (Isaiah 11:2)
    * Evil and tyranny will not be able to stand before his leadership (Isaiah 11:4)
    * Knowledge of God will fill the world (Isaiah 11:9)
    * He will include and attract people from all cultures and nations (Isaiah 11:10)
    * All Israelites will be returned to their homeland (Isaiah 11:12)
    * Death will be swallowed up forever (Isaiah 25:8)
    * There will be no more hunger or illness, and death will cease (Isaiah 25:8)
    * All of the dead will rise again (Isaiah 26:19)
    * The Jewish people will experience eternal joy and gladness (Isaiah 51:11)
    * He will be a messenger of peace (Isaiah 53:7)
    * Nations will recognize the wrongs they did Israel (Isaiah 52:13–53:5)
    * The peoples of the world will turn to the Jews for spiritual guidance (Zechariah 8:23)
    * The ruined cities of Israel will be restored (Ezekiel 16:55)
    * Weapons of war will be destroyed (Ezekiel 39:9)
    * The Temple will be rebuilt (Ezekiel 40) resuming many of the suspended mitzvot
    * He will then perfect the entire world to serve God together (Zephaniah 3:9)
    * Jews will know the Torah without Study (Jeremiah 31:33)
    * He will take the barren land and make it abundant and fruitful (Isaiah 51:3, Amos 9:13–15, Ezekiel 36:29–30, Isaiah 11:6–9)


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 06, 2011, 11:05:28 PM
What created God?
There is no need for a creator of God because he is eternal. But we know that the universe cannot be eternal.

We don't know the universe can't be eternal.  And why no need for a creator of god again?  How do YOU know he can/can't be eternal?  As far as I can tell, you just really want such a god to exist.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 06, 2011, 11:07:06 PM
But Toledoth Yeshu is an extra-biblical source that does confirm that the tomb was empty.
Just the same as before.

The "Toledoth Yeshu" does no such thing as to confirm that the tomb is empty.

It is a medieval text based on originally orally stories from around second to third century which are nothing else than a derogatory jewish parody of the gospels.


Quote
Plus the Jewish Officials of the time were doing all they could to stop the spread of Christianity. If the apostles were claiming that the tomb was empty and Jesus was alive all the Jewish officials would have had to do was bring the body out of the tomb. They would have done anything to stop the spread of Christianity (considering they killed tons of people for it) but they could not produce the body of Jesus.
If Jesus would have really been crucified, there would have been no tomb. His body would have been left to rot on the cross and when it almost fell off it would have been dumped into a mass grave.

You operate under the assumption that Jesus existed. Yet a character that never existed can't have a body either. You first have to establish that the story of Jesus in the NT is real.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: rev45 on January 06, 2011, 11:09:06 PM
I'd like to see an answer to that too. And wasn't Yahweh married at one point? lol
Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't marriage originally meant for people to make political or family pacts with others?  If so who was he making deals with?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 06, 2011, 11:21:17 PM
I'd like to see an answer to that too. And wasn't Yahweh married at one point? lol
Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't marriage originally meant for people to make political or family pacts with others?  If so who was he making deals with?

Nobody, of course. Cuz gawd did it for LOVE.  :'(

He's a romantic that way, I hear.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Nick on January 06, 2011, 11:28:50 PM
How about the fact that the apostles were made up as well.  The whole thing is a myth story.  Therefore, you can have to body getting up and the apostles  spreading the story.  Some have linked the 12 apostles to the 12 signs of the Zodiac with Christ being the "Sun"  or "Son".  It is a myth story and not a very good one.  Mirtha was a better read.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 06, 2011, 11:35:33 PM
The other big issue was why Christianity is right while other religions are wrong. This would take a very long time to discuss all the many reasons I believe this but here's a very simple answer (I can go into more detail if you'd like me to):
Let's say at least hypothetically that God does exist (I can argue scientifically why he must exist if you'd like but I won't do that this time). If there really is a God, then one religion must be right and the others must be wrong because they are all different in some way.

Unless of course this god deliberately created different religions for different groups of people. In which case your little rationalization crumbles to dust.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 06, 2011, 11:41:50 PM
Pliny's Letters to Trajan and other extra-biblical sources such as Tacitus' Annals, book XV (I can find more if you want) confirm that anyone professing to be a Christian were to be put to death.
Funny thing that you should mention Tacitus' Annals...

There are two very important things about this passage in Tacitus' Annals:

1) This passage in the Annals is about the persecution of Christians by Nero. It is strange however, that this is the only passage in all of Tacitus' numerous works, where he mentions this. Nowhere else in all his writings does he write so much as a single sentence about this.
It is even stranger, that early Christians, who did have access to his works, never mention this. Clement of Alexandria or Tertullian, two of the great early apologists, simply don't know about this passage or any persecution of Christians by Nero despite having access to Tacitus' works (including the Annals).
The earliest point in history, that this passage in the Annals is mentioned is in the fifteenth century. Strangely nobody ever noticed it before...

2)Assuming the passage is genuine and written by Tacitus himself, his sources are likely of christian origin instead of any official records, because there are a number of flaws in the passage in question:
a)Pilate was a prefect and not a procurator. (and if he had been a procurator then Tacitus would have written his title as “procurator of XYZ” and not just called him “procurator”)
b) Tacitus does not use Jesus' name but writes “a man called Christ was executed.” “Christ” is a title, not a name. Why should the Roman records say that “the Messiah” was executed?


Seriously, JT812. You need to look a little more closely at what you reference as "evidence"

Quote
Certainly the apostles would have been at the top of this list and certainly nobody would have continued to believe if the apostles themselves renounced their beliefs.
If they existed in the first place, which still has not been established.

Quote
Further, if the apostles had renounced their beliefs this certainly would have been written down and any rumors of their martyrs would have been crushed because there was a large movement to stop the spread of Christianity.
If the apostles never existed, they can not renounce their beliefs and there would be now records of them doing so.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 07, 2011, 12:03:08 AM
As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity. This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful, source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know, and was not controlled by our current scientific laws.

 I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer. That's irrelevant though.

 The most important scientific problem with evolution is creation itself. In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance.

It also required a source of energy that did not exist at one time to begin to exist (spontaneous generation). This phenomenon would be considered impossible to happen at another time in our universe and in order for it to happen whatever created all that we know must have exceeded the physical limits of everything we know. That entity would have to be a divine or at least supernatural presence, namely God.

I've heard some make the claim that the Universe could be eternal but that is impossible because the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics states that there is a gradual loss of energy in our universe meaning at some point there will be no energy left and at another point there had to be a "full" amount of energy (the beginning of the universe).

I've had many people argue that the impossibility of creation by evolution does not equal creation by God. But my argument is not that evolution simply did not create the universe, it's that a supernatural force is the only possibility to the creation of our universe. That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.

Don’t worry, I went ahead and added spacing so it’s easier to read your quote for everyone….

I love it when scientists can’t explain something to the christian liking they go directly to “god did it” or “See, that’s god”.  Anyways, you’re also forgetting the fact that scientists and cosmologists largely agree that at this singularity and moments after the big bang, that physics as we know it was probably very different and did break most laws if not all currently known laws.  Also agreed upon and breaking the rule is that the universe expanded faster than the speed of light at the very early stage.

I could go into more detail but you seem to be content taking the unknown and regurgitating it only to be another liar for god.  You may be able to falsely dupe other people around you like that but people in this forum are smarter than that.  Real nice though, the imaginary god would be proud but I’m sickened.

Is there any other science that we've learned in the last few 100 hundred years or so that would like to attribute to god!?  When you see a large flying plane in the air do you tell others around you that in no way are the wings on that plane large enough for air pressure to generate enough lift force per square inch of surface area to be able to fly and therefore god exists and is flying the plane.....
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Locke on January 07, 2011, 12:15:06 AM
Why does god hate figs?

Also, why hasn't your god eliminated cancer and other diseases? For my 16th birthday in February, I got something starting with a ca-- but it wasn't the Kia Forte I wanted, but cancer.

For my 16th birthday, I was in a hospital getting chemotherapy.  My mom had cancer when I was in 7th grade. My uncle just got diagnosed with cancer (very likely to be deadly). Their family is very religious, and yet their prayer did nothing.

How do you reconcile this with god creating man in his image? Did god die of leukemia billions of years ago? It would fit with your view of how the universe began.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: OnePerson on January 07, 2011, 01:52:55 AM
I like how people use words like "creationism" or "creator" in an attempt to sound neutral even though the only creator they're thinking of is their own god.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 07, 2011, 07:37:37 AM
I like how people use words like "creationism" or "creator" in an attempt to sound neutral even though the only creator they're thinking of is their own god.

Yes, this happens to me a lot in conversations with certain friends.  The words "we're not talking about God here, we're talking about natural law, and science."  Too funny...it's as though they are perfectly aware of how it sounds to try to claim they are being scientific, when in the end, they have only one choice left - God did it.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 07, 2011, 07:42:19 AM
I believe it was Eugene Scott who quipped that creationists IDers like to claim they do not know the identity of "the Designer" but his resume only fits a god.

But it is not as if lying is beyond these people.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: monkeymind on January 07, 2011, 07:56:15 AM
To the OP:

Does god have a poopie hole? If not, where does Holy Shit come from?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 07, 2011, 02:28:26 PM
This thread is just all over the place! JT, can´t you start a thread with a particular subject (for example, did Jesus exist?) instead of trying to cover everything?

JT, I have tried somewhat unsuccesfully to claim that Jesus really existed in another thread. What is your evidence that he ever existed?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Tykster on January 07, 2011, 03:03:26 PM
To the OP: Please describe your god's demonstrable attributes ( if any). 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Tykster on January 07, 2011, 03:27:18 PM
Also agreed upon and breaking the rule is that the universe expanded faster than the speed of light at the very early stage.

My bolding.

This caught my eye, so I did a little search and came up with this (http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=387), apparently no rule/law is broken.

Quote
[The] answer lies in the subtle difference between expansion that is faster than the speed of light and the propagation of information that is faster than the speed of light. The latter is forbidden by fundamental physical laws, but the former is allowed; that is, as long as you are not transmitting any information (like a light pulse), you can make something happen at a speed that is faster than that of light.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 07, 2011, 03:34:26 PM
^^^ Right, I may have misworded a bit.  I meant that most people think that absolutely "nothing" can travel faster than light, but space/universe itself actually can.  Thanks for catching that.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 07, 2011, 03:41:49 PM

To the OP.  Why do christians grieve so badly when they loose a loved one if they are supposed to be off with god in a the paradise of heaven?  They should be filled with happiness.  This emotion of saddness is either selfishness and/or your actual lack of belief in action for a period of time.

Why do christians fight tooth and nail to stay alive if they are diagnosed with terminal illness?  They seek out people who practice medice and science to save them from their of belief of not eternal nothingness, but absolute paradise with god.

Funny how even believers don't even believe when it comes right down to the actual reality of meeting their maker....
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Larissa238 on January 07, 2011, 04:32:40 PM
To DVZ3- Does this mean that there are *only* atheists in foxholes? I'd love to break that cliche once and for all.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dante on January 07, 2011, 04:36:35 PM
To DVZ3- Does this mean that there are *only* atheists in foxholes? I'd love to break that cliche once and for all.

Nah, it just means that they dont really and truly believe the delusion.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: sammylama on January 07, 2011, 04:44:39 PM
This thread is just all over the place! JT, can´t you start a thread with a particular subject (for example, did Jesus exist?) instead of trying to cover everything?

JT, I have tried somewhat unsuccesfully to claim that Jesus really existed in another thread. What is your evidence that he ever existed?

This I like!    :D



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 07, 2011, 05:05:01 PM
To DVZ3- Does this mean that there are *only* atheists in foxholes? I'd love to break that cliche once and for all.

Not quite sure what you mean here but Dante's reponse it what I was getting at.  Christians don't even really buy into it when the circumstances are such that they should accept their fate of their god, especially on their deathbed.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Larissa238 on January 07, 2011, 05:09:24 PM
To DVZ3- Does this mean that there are *only* atheists in foxholes? I'd love to break that cliche once and for all.

Not quite sure what you mean here but Dante's reponse it what I was getting at.  Christians don't even really buy into it when the circumstances are such that they should accept their fate of their god, especially on their deathbed.

There is a cliche saying "There are no atheists in foxholes" which basically means that when you are in a life or death situation, you default to believing in God. I remember being on a plane as a theist and being super worried when the plane hit pretty bad turbulence. Then later, after I deconverted, I had a bad flight. I just sat in the seat calmly, knowing that if it was the end, I was okay with that.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: nogodsforme on January 07, 2011, 05:19:20 PM

To the OP.  Why do christians grieve so badly when they loose a loved one if they are supposed to be off with god in a the paradise of heaven?  They should be filled with happiness.  This emotion of saddness is either selfishness and/or your actual lack of belief in action for a period of time.

Why do christians fight tooth and nail to stay alive if they are diagnosed with terminal illness?  They seek out people who practice medice and science to save them from their of belief of not eternal nothingness, but absolute paradise with god.

Funny how even believers don't even believe when it comes right down to the actual reality of meeting their maker....

Likewise the attitude towards miscarriage (god's abortion method) and legal medical abortion. The fetus/baby goes straight to heaven, nowadays does not even have to park at Limbo. No original sin or nothing, plus no chance to screw up and pick the wrong parents and thus the wrong culture and religion.  If they really believed, Christians would be the ones escorting women into the clinics..... &)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 07, 2011, 05:24:03 PM
To the OP:

Does god have a poopie hole? If not, where does Holy Shit come from?

I laughed so hard that I snorted!!  :laugh:
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Paperbackslave on January 07, 2011, 05:40:00 PM


As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity. This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful, source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know, and was not controlled by our current scientific laws. I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer.

I think this comes down to the same thing I've heard so many times: If you go back far enough (pre-Big Bang), then it must be god.  But just because we don't *yet* understand it, doesn't mean it must be god (Goddidit).

I've toyed with the notion that the singularity that we cannot explain at the center of black holes may be something akin to the singularity at the beginning of *our* universe.  Perhaps all singularities open on the other side to a Big Bang, or another universe? 

The point is - WE DON'T KNOW.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 07, 2011, 05:44:27 PM
The point is - WE DON'T KNOW.

Which is, of course, enough justification for me to legislate my religion and set on fire all who disagree.

You may begin your worship of me . . . now. . . .

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 07, 2011, 05:58:47 PM
I can argue scientifically why he must exist if you'd like but I won't do that this time

Please do! There are thousands of scientist and brilliant minds that would love to hear this "scientific" argument!

Quote
Christianity is also the only religion I know of where people aren't sent to Hell by God; instead they are offered grace from Him

Who created hell and who decides what criteria condemn a person to hell?? That being SENDS people to hell.

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How can a holy and perfect God accept sinful/bad people into Heaven without a form of redemption?

How can a holy and perfect God create imperfect beings?

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How can your works save you if they are the very thing that condemn you?

They don't. God condemns people.

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Also, another huge difference is that our God is alive.

How do you know this? Can you provide evidence?

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That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.

Who is we? If it is the creator of everything, did it create itself? How do you know which god it is? How do you know that it is not Zeus?

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There is no need for a creator of God because he is eternal. But we know that the universe cannot be eternal.

Again, who is this we? How do you know that the universe cannot be eternal? How can you say that the universe, something that you can observe and study, cannot be eternal but your God, something that cannot be observed or studied, can be eternal? And again, how do you know which god?
[/quote]
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 07, 2011, 11:31:06 PM
Sorry, I have no time to answer posts right now. :'( Hopefully I'll have some time tomorrow night. We'll just have to see.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jeff7 on January 07, 2011, 11:35:52 PM
JT.. you have a lot on your plate right now, here, and from the sound of it, not much time to answer. Might I recommend the advice that you might ask for some time to deal with all of this? It is, admittedly, a bit 'one against a hundred,' so if you really want to keep at this, don't be afraid to ask for some breathing room. (Now, if you'll actually take such advice as offered to many others who (unfortunately) haven't is up to you.)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 08, 2011, 01:21:11 PM
Sorry, I'm not going to be able to respond as often as I'd like or as specifically as I like.

Sorry, I have no time to answer posts right now. :'( Hopefully I'll have some time tomorrow night. We'll just have to see.


JT812,

As a moderator, let me give you some guidance.  I understand your time is limited, but you asked for this.  For future reference, do not start topics like this if you cannot put in the time to see them through.  Otherwise it is a disappointment for everyone.

In the mean time, if everyone could please hold off on adding to the questions until JT812 gets caught up, it would be appreciated.  Thanks.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: sammylama on January 08, 2011, 01:41:31 PM
I propose that JT812 pray to his god, and ask for a miraculous span of time to be opened up for him; for an increased ability to read text, understand theory and arguments, and formulate rapid (but accurate and referenced) responses; and lastly, that his typing speed be somewhere near 120 WPM.   

God is real and and answers prayers, after all.  Surely, this is a "worthy" cause . . .

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: changeling on January 08, 2011, 03:09:54 PM
^ That is easier than stopping the sun
like he did for Josua.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Cyberia on January 08, 2011, 05:36:03 PM
As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity. This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful, source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know, and was not controlled by our current scientific laws. I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer. That's irrelevant though. The most important scientific problem with evolution is creation itself. In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance. It also required a source of energy that did not exist at one time to begin to exist (spontaneous generation). This phenomenon would be considered impossible to happen at another time in our universe and in order for it to happen whatever created all that we know must have exceeded the physical limits of everything we know. That entity would have to be a divine or at least supernatural presence, namely God. I've heard some make the claim that the Universe could be eternal but that is impossible because the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics states that there is a gradual loss of energy in our universe meaning at some point there will be no energy left and at another point there had to be a "full" amount of energy (the beginning of the universe). I've had many people argue that the impossibility of creation by evolution does not equal creation by God. But my argument is not that evolution simply did not create the universe, it's that a supernatural force is the only possibility to the creation of our universe. That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.

The moderators have asked that we stop posting new questions, and I will honor that.  When you get time, please post a response to me here.  What you have said above is not correct.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 09, 2011, 09:42:05 AM
I'm not going to be able to quote people properly (with references) because some of the quotes are from earlier pages. Sorry about that.
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Pretending something is impossible unless god did it doesn't impress me much. Scientists are gradually whittling down the unknowns in physics and as of yet they haven't found any indication of something so fantastic it has to be called god. Unless you can show me your sources, I'm going to have to just flat say you are wrong.
My argument is not a "god did it" argument, and I hate it when atheists claim this is the argument Christians are using, because those who don't believe in God use the "we don't understand it" argument. There is a reason Scientists don't fully understand the Big Bang. That's because it breaks so many laws of science it's impossible to understand on a deep level because it's not even possible that it could happen due to all the scientific laws we now know, which it breaks. And you say they haven't found any indication of something so fantastic it has to be called god. What about the show Through the Wormhole? In an interview Morgan Freeman stated that some scientists are at the point where they don't know what could be responsible for certain things other than God.
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And anally violating a baby is no worse than, again, CUTTING PIECES OFF OF IT'S GENITALS. It's the exact same level of sick.
No it's not. Circumcision can have health and cleanliness advantages. It's commonly practiced, because it's not that weird. Anally violating a baby has no benefits and it's really really weird. I can't even believe you made that comparison. Why is circumcision an option at hospitals? And raping the baby isn't?
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how bout addressing some of my questions like why god had siblings?
Jesus had siblings because he was God in an earthly form. He was fully God but also fully human. And a lot of humans have siblings. I don't see why this is an issue?
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And wasn't Yahweh married at one point? lol
Nope.
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Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.
Actually, yes, they were. http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html (http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html)
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You have not offered scientific evidence for god.  You have made a false statement (the same "more and more scientists BS) followed by a complete misrepresentation of the big bang and the laws of thermodynamics, and finishing with an argument from incredulity.  Not scientific evidence.
Tell me where I'm wrong. You asserting that I don't understand something with no explanation of why it's wrong is not even a valid point.
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And this whole nonsense of how xtianity is the only religion where you get to heaven by grace is not true.  The same concepts exist in Hinduism and Islam to name two.  And many religions throughout mankinds history did not have a heaven and hell.
Which I said some believe in works to reach enlightenment. Hindus believe in works in order to be reincarnated into different people or things, not grace. Islam does not believe in grace either. I'm not sure why you would claim either of these did.
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Why does Jewish messianic prophecy and eschatology have absolutely nothing to do with Christianity?
It has everything to do with Christianity. All of those quotes were completed with the coming of Christ, either in a physical or symbolic way.
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You operate under the assumption that Jesus existed. Yet a character that never existed can't have a body either. You first have to establish that the story of Jesus in the NT is real.
You obviously haven't done your research. Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of Christianity start if Jesus didn't even exist? You could know Jesus was real without any sources but I'll give you some anyway.
"Christus, from whom the name had its origin, suffered the extreme penalty during the reign of Tiberius at the hands of one of our procurators, Pontius Pilatus, and a most mischievous superstition, thus checked for the moment, again broke out not only in Judaea, the first source of the evil, but even in Rome, where all things hideous and shameful from every part of the world find their centre and become popular. Accordingly, an arrest was first made of all who pleaded guilty; then, upon their information, an immense multitude was convicted, not so much of the crime of firing the city, as of hatred against mankind. Mockery of every sort was added to their deaths. Covered with the skins of beasts, they were torn by dogs and perished, or were nailed to crosses, or were doomed to the flames and burnt, to serve as a nightly illumination, when daylight had expired. Nero offered his gardens for the spectacle, and was exhibiting a show in the circus, while he mingled with the people in the dress of a charioteer or stood aloft on a car." -Cornelius Tacitus
"At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good and he was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive; accordingly, he was perhaps the messiah concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders." -Flavius Josephus
"Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others" -Flavius Josephus
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Anyways, you’re also forgetting the fact that scientists and cosmologists largely agree that at this singularity and moments after the big bang, that physics as we know it was probably very different and did break most laws if not all currently known laws.  Also agreed upon and breaking the rule is that the universe expanded faster than the speed of light at the very early stage.
Cool, obviously I don't agree with them. Tell me how it's possible that the Big Bang was able to break all of our current scientific laws but nothing else can.
JT.. you have a lot on your plate right now, here, and from the sound of it, not much time to answer. Might I recommend the advice that you might ask for some time to deal with all of this? It is, admittedly, a bit 'one against a hundred,' so if you really want to keep at this, don't be afraid to ask for some breathing room. (Now, if you'll actually take such advice as offered to many others who (unfortunately) haven't is up to you.)
I appreciate that. It would be nice if the bigger questions/concerns were given here. It's hard to answer everything when small & big questions alike are being asked.
The moderators have asked that we stop posting new questions, and I will honor that.  When you get time, please post a response to me here.  What you have said above is not correct.
Ok, you're good to go now  :)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 09, 2011, 12:30:07 PM
Yah had siblings NOT asking about Jesus we know he had sibs......explain why GOD did
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 09, 2011, 12:34:35 PM
Thanks for your replies JT812:

To the members involved in this discussion, can we stay focused on this latest set of replies (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17265.msg383239.html#msg383239) from JT812 until they get hashed out?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: TopolX on January 09, 2011, 12:41:16 PM
My argument is not a "god did it" argument, and I hate it when atheists claim this is the argument Christians are using, because those who don't believe in God use the "we don't understand it" argument. There is a reason Scientists don't fully understand the Big Bang. That's because it breaks so many laws of science it's impossible to understand on a deep level because it's not even possible that it could happen due to all the scientific laws we now know, which it breaks. And you say they haven't found any indication of something so fantastic it has to be called god. What about the show Through the Wormhole? In an interview Morgan Freeman stated that some scientists are at the point where they don't know what could be responsible for certain things other than God.
You are saying god did it though aren't you? If you believe the big bang is impossible and you keep mentioning god it's quite clear you believe god did it. Of course what you didn't think of is that the big bang only breaks the laws of science we understand (only some of them at that) and we understand little compared to all there is to know so no it's not impossible just not understood which is an acceptable answer as we have only just begun to progress upon the path of knowledge and understanding which will ultimately give us definitive answers for the questions we have asked since we were first capable of asking them. Also since when did Morgan Freeman become a noted academic? He's a good actor and a great narrator but he's no Steven Hawkings and I doubt he's in much of position to be considered a credible source of information.

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You obviously haven't done your research. Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of Christianity start if Jesus didn't even exist? You could know Jesus was real without any sources but I'll give you some anyway.
There is already a debate thread discussing this very thing so all I will do is point you there (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/board,82.0.html) with this comment: Even if Jesus as a man existed none of your sources point to his divinity like in the stories so you have failed to justify your view and support your point. If you want to worship a good public speaker why not worship Ghandi or Hitler who did pretty similar and we know they existed.

Take all the time you need JT and feel free to respond to others first.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 09, 2011, 01:02:09 PM
JT, can´t we clear out each of the questions in order instead of trying to discuss them all at the same time? This thread gets very hard to follow...

Can we pick one question and properly discuss that one before we move on to the next one? Trying to simultaneously discuss and debate 10 different subjects is kind of overwhelming for everyone here...
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 09, 2011, 02:05:43 PM
You obviously haven't done your research.
Oh, but I have. Based on your replies in this thread so far and also on your extra-biblical "contemporary" historical sources you brought as evidence for Jesus existence, I'd rather suggest you spend some more time doing research.

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Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of Christianity start if Jesus didn't even exist?
And now you're just falling back to fallacies to push your point.

This is both an appeal to belief as well as an appeal to popularity. "A lot of people started believing X, thus X must be true."
That certain aspects of Christianity made it appealing to both the ruling elite (for whom it was a useful tool) as well as to the uneducated masses (for whom it made their hardship a little bit more bearable) is by no means an argument that the story of the NT is actually true.

"Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of the Islam start if Mohammed didn't even exist?"
"Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of Buddhism start if the Buddha didn't even exist?"

And as a side note it should not be forgotten that Christianity only became such a "HUGE" movement after it was declared state religion of the Roman empire and was spread by the sword. In the time before that it was far away from being a "HUGE" movement.

Shouldn't it also give you pause that according to the NT thousands of Jews revered Jesus and witnessed his miracles yet the areas where all of the NT is supposed to have taken place were also the ones where Christianity was hardly picked up at all?

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You could know Jesus was real without any sources
Can I interest you in some snake oil? A lot of people swear on it, so you can know it works without any sources to show the claim is real, right?

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but I'll give you some anyway.
I had some hopes to see something new, but unfortunately that's not the case.

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Cornelius Tacitus
I shall quote myself:

There are two very important things about this passage in Tacitus' Annals:

1) This passage in the Annals is about the persecution of Christians by Nero. It is strange however, that this is the only passage in all of Tacitus' numerous works, where he mentions this. Nowhere else in all his writings does he write so much as a single sentence about this.
It is even stranger, that early Christians, who did have access to his works, never mention this. Clement of Alexandria or Tertullian, two of the great early apologists, simply don't know about this passage or any persecution of Christians by Nero despite having access to Tacitus' works (including the Annals).
The earliest point in history, that this passage in the Annals is mentioned is in the fifteenth century. Strangely nobody ever noticed it before...

2)Assuming the passage is genuine and written by Tacitus himself, his sources are likely of christian origin instead of any official records, because there are a number of flaws in the passage in question:
a)Pilate was a prefect and not a procurator. (and if he had been a procurator then Tacitus would have written his title as “procurator of XYZ” and not just called him “procurator”)
b) Tacitus does not use Jesus' name but writes “a man called Christ was executed.” “Christ” is a title, not a name. Why should the Roman records say that “the Messiah” was executed?


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"At this time there was a wise man who was called Jesus. And his conduct was good and he was known to be virtuous. And many people from among the Jews and other nations became his disciples. Pilate condemned him to be crucified and to die. And those who had become his disciples did not abandon his discipleship. They reported that he had appeared to them three days after his crucifixion and that he was alive; accordingly, he was perhaps the messiah concerning whom the prophets have recounted wonders." -Flavius Josephus
Ah, the good old Flavius Josephus and his "Antiquities of the Jews." It's a classic which always turns up in any discussion about historical evidence for Jesus.

It has just one little flaw: This whole passage about Jesus is a complete forgery.

There are a lot of things wrong with this passage, so I will name a few for good measure.

a) The passage does not fit in with the surrounding text.
b) The whole passage is extremely pro-christian in writing. That should make you wonder, as Josephus was a pharisaic jew, who did not hide his dislike for the new Christian cult in his other works. It even makes Josephus seem Christian, given how highly he speaks of Jesus, even going so far to wonder if he can actually be called a man.
c) In this passage Josephus calls Jesus “messiah”, yet according to the church father Origen Josephus did not recognize Jesus as messiah nor did he believe in any other Christian claim of miracles of Jesus.
d) Josephus writes about this period of time in some of his other works too, but this passage or any passage mentioning this is nowhere to be found in those.
e) None of the early apologists like Tertullian, Irenaeus, Justin Martyr, Clement of Alexandria and not even the church father Origen, who otherwise quoted often from Josephus' works, picked this up and you have to keep in mind that they had access to the Antiquities and were actively searching for passages and quotes like that. The earliest point in time, where this passage is mentioned in 324 AD by Eusebius.
f) As late as 891 AD this passage still does not appear in most works concerning the “Antiquities of the Jews.”
g) Even several centuries later there are versions of the "Antiquities of the Jews" that are reported to be missing this particular passage.

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"Festus was now dead, and Albinus was but upon the road; so he assembled the sanhedrim of judges, and brought before them the brother of Jesus, who was called Christ, whose name was James, and some others" -Flavius Josephus
Another interesting passage from the Antiquities of the Jews

But once again it's of not much use since "who was called Christ" is deemed to be a later interpolation. This little line is one of the two only times Josephus ever uses the word "Christ" (the other time the word "Christ" turns up is in the forged passage you cited before this one).

And just as Christians always demand that verses out of the bible should not be taken out of context, we should also look at this passage in context. Because, surprise, the aforementioned Jesus turns up again just a few lines below that one.

"on which king Agrippa took the high priesthood from him [Ananus, the one who brought James to court], when he had ruled but three months, and made Jesus, the son of Damneus, high priest"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 09, 2011, 02:45:39 PM
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"Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of the Islam start if Mohammed didn't even exist?"
"Why did a HUGE movement of the spread of Buddhism start if the Buddha didn't even exist?"

Not the best example, Asmoday.  There is a broad acceptance, historically, of the existence of a Hindu prince Sidhartha who became known as Buddha later on.  And Mohammad was certainly a real historical character.

The question is not one of existence, but of divinity.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 09, 2011, 04:14:30 PM
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My argument is not a "god did it" argument, and I hate it when atheists claim this is the argument Christians are using, because those who don't believe in God use the "we don't understand it" argument. There is a reason Scientists don't fully understand the Big Bang. That's because it breaks so many laws of science it's impossible to understand on a deep level because it's not even possible that it could happen due to all the scientific laws we now know, which it breaks. And you say they haven't found any indication of something so fantastic it has to be called god. What about the show Through the Wormhole? In an interview Morgan Freeman stated that some scientists are at the point where they don't know what could be responsible for certain things other than God.

If you're not arguing "goddidit", then why the last sentence?  You're arguing god-of-the-gaps, which is just another form of "goddidit".

Exactly what laws of science does the big bang theory breaks?  Even if it did break a lot of scientific laws, and thus, should be considered non-science; that does not gives us any reasons to assume goddidit or that any sort of supernatural beings did anything.  It would just mean we'd be back at square one on this issue.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 09, 2011, 04:15:32 PM
Not the best example, Asmoday.  There is a broad acceptance, historically, of the existence of a Hindu prince Sidhartha who became known as Buddha later on.  And Mohammad was certainly a real historical character.
I knew that this would come up if I use those examples but actually those questions are valid.

In the case of Siddhartha it is currently held that he was born around 600 BCE yet different sources and authorities even go back as far as 1300 BCE for his birth. Not to mention that practically all the names in the myth are highly symbolical. The stories about him in different texts are on par with what we would call Christians out for if they tried to sell it to us as proof or evidence.

And also in Mohammed's case we can't say with certainty that he was a historical character as he is described. It is often stated as fact but the truth is that Mohammed certainly isn't subjected to the same scrutiny as other mythological figures. Which may have something to do that your health might be in danger if you do so much as doubt the writings of the quran let alone doubt the prophet (like professor Suliman Bashear whose own students threw him out of the window of the classroom when he taught that the quran developed as a religion gradually within the historical context of Judaism and Christianity rather than being the revelation of a prophet.). The earliest biography of Muhammed dates more than 100 years after his supposed year of death and all we have of it are fragments that survived in other texts.
Especially recent research done by Muhammad Sven Kalisch, a devout muslim convert and first professor for Islamic theology in Germany points to the conclusion that Mohammed as described by muslim sources most likely never existed.


Having said that, I fully concur though that the important question is one of the assumed divinity and not of the existence as the possibility is there that there was a person being the basis for the myth.

All I'm saying though is that in the case of Mohammed and Siddhartha (as described in the quran and the hadiths and in case of Siddhartha in the Buddhacarita, Lalitavistara S?tra, Mah?vastu, and the Nid?nakath?) we don't have any more evidence for their existence than we have for the existence of Jesus (as described in the Bible).
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 09, 2011, 04:51:57 PM
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Anyways, you’re also forgetting the fact that scientists and cosmologists largely agree that at this singularity and moments after the big bang, that physics as we know it was probably very different and did break most laws if not all currently known laws.  Also agreed upon and breaking the rule is that the universe expanded faster than the speed of light at the very early stage.
Cool, obviously I don't agree with them.
Why? What part of the calculation do you dispute?
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Tell me how it's possible that the Big Bang was able to break all of our current scientific laws but nothing else can.
I am disappointed that you did not consider that there must be laws that control such a singularity - we simply do not know them. The present laws, although sound as far as they go, cannot explain.

This is similar to the understanding that planets went in circles, only to later find that the orbits were ellipses. Circles were a good approximation. Or Newton's law of gravity - good enough to put a man on the moon, but Einstein altered it slightly.

You see, science it travelling along a long road, finding truth as it goes. God is sitting in a hut and denying it all.

As your answer is "God did it" do you ascribe all that you can't understand to God?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 09, 2011, 05:33:03 PM
I'm not going to be able to quote people properly (with references) because some of the quotes are from earlier pages. Sorry about that.

You better learn quickly.  From one "newbie" to another, they tolerate bad quoting about as much as U2 tolerates an innovation.  Open two browser pages . . . "paste" in the name of the person your are responding to . . . profit.

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My argument is not a "god did it" argument, . . .

Of course it is, and this has been show to you by others so I will not (http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/deadhorse.gif).

Worse, your fallacies distill to "I Don't Understand it . . . so . . . Goddidit!!"

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Jesus had siblings because he was God in an earthly form. He was fully God but also fully human.

Sorry, son, that is modern theology irrelevant to the biblical texts and earlier traditions.

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And wasn't Yahweh married at one point? lol
Nope.

Yup.

You need to actually study science as well as religions.

brkt ’tkm lyhwh šmron wl’šrth

Shantih  shantih  shantih


--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 09, 2011, 06:55:04 PM
I'm not going to be able to quote people properly (with references) because some of the quotes are from earlier pages. Sorry about that.


Hi JT,

If you click the "quote" link within another person's post, it will open a reply box with their post quoted.  It will include the person's name and a link back to that post.  That makes it much easier to understand whom you are quoting and from what post.

The quoting FAQ is here (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,4259.0.html), but I do not believe it has instructions for that.  I suggest you practice quoting in different ways in the test area.  If you have questions, PM any moderator.




Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Barracuda on January 09, 2011, 07:07:38 PM
I rarely get an answer from christians to this question, JT:

Why would God require human sacrifice (Jesus) in order to forgive sins? Doesn't seem to make much sense when you think about it. Wouldn't he just be able to forgive under his own will? Don't see much point, or even relevance, in the whole crucifixion part.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 09, 2011, 08:15:25 PM
??? did it start with the Pagan animal sacrifice to the Gods,later picked up as a sacrifice to the jewish god
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 09, 2011, 09:23:37 PM
Specifically to the Christian myths, it is a late innovation to deal with the fact that "whatever" groups thought was "it," "it" never happened.  That "it" includes the eschaton.  So the "why" and "how" he got executed became a subject of much debate.  In Mk, he gets executed.  In Lk, it is a great injustice.  In Jn?  Junior is in control of everything.

And there a numerous "reasons" given to deal with questions like "how could he be executed?"  On of my favorites is that the human Junior was "adopted" by Big Daddy after the baptism and then departed at the execution!  I do not think Mk intended it that way, but I can see how people could--and did--interpret it that way.  In fact, the text of Mk is altered in some witnesses to "fix" that!

So, in looking for such answers, later believers looked back to sacrificial myths for an explanation.  They also needed a reason to have people still follow.  I mean, if he "died for your sins" then why bother now?  Are they not gone?  Oh wait!  Let us introduce an "original sin" we all have.  Blah . . . blah.  This is how religions develop: asking questions and making up answers.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: lotanddaughters on January 09, 2011, 09:47:03 PM
Sorry, I'm not going to be able to respond as often as I'd like or as specifically as I like.

To Larissa concerning the verse in Deuteronomy about rape:
http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm (http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm)
That verse is not actually referring to rape as the website will show. I'm really sorry for all that happened though.

Hey, everyone, this crazy shit is coming from a Christian who is "open to questions".  ;D

JT, I am so glad the Creator of the universe finally decided to inspire someone to come out with a website to clear this shit up. People have lived entire lives believing that the Creator of the universe actually meant rape! And guess who's fault it is? It's theirs. They chose(with their God-given "free will") to live during a time that had no internet!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 09, 2011, 10:35:43 PM
Sorry, I'm not going to be able to respond as often as I'd like or as specifically as I like.

To Larissa concerning the verse in Deuteronomy about rape:
http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm (http://www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/ot_and_rape.htm)
That verse is not actually referring to rape as the website will show. I'm really sorry for all that happened though.

Hey, everyone, this crazy s**t is coming from a Christian who is "open to questions".  ;D

JT, I am so glad the Creator of the universe finally decided to inspire someone to come out with a website to clear this s**t up. People have lived entire lives believing that the Creator of the universe actually meant rape! And guess who's fault it is? It's theirs. They chose(with their God-given "free will") to live during a time that had no internet!

Boy, what a mess this Bible book is.  When you stop and see it for what it has become, it's a miracle of beyond biblical proportions that anyone knows what any of it means!

And by the way, I have said this before and it bears repeating.  The Bible is not completely understood by a single human alive or dead.  And how can some doofus on this board make such a claim?  Simple.  There has never been a time when the complete set of original texts were ever put together, ever.  So, logically, no human has ever been privy to the complete set of original texts, thus no complete understanding of the entire set of books has ever existed.

Yet, here we are today, watching the believers run around and proclaim knowledge that they simply cannot possess.  The best we have are what the most agreed upon historians have come up with.  And much of that is speculation based on secular knowledge, but at least it's not tainted by blind faith and wishful thinking!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 09, 2011, 11:01:07 PM
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Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.

Actually, yes, they were. http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html (http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html)

I'm not seeing any references to apostles here, nor to anyone who has supposedly witnessed a resurrection.  So...care to try again?

I hope you're not just looking at evidence that xtians were at one time persecuted as some kind of proof.  I could point to all kinds of religions throughout history who have undergone persecution and oppression.  The inquisition comes to mind off the top of my head.  The persecution of the native peoples of central and south America, etc.  In fact, I would say most religions throughout history have spread through force and oppression.  The fact that xtians once were at the receiving end certainly doesn't prove anything. 

But you seemed to want to indicate that xtianity is separate from other religions because the apostles, that is to say the supposed eye witnesses, would have had to allow themselves to be killed for what they knew was a lie.  So I'll ask again, what evidence do you have for how any of them died?

More to follow...
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 09, 2011, 11:28:51 PM
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And this whole nonsense of how xtianity is the only religion where you get to heaven by grace is not true.  The same concepts exist in Hinduism and Islam to name two.  And many religions throughout mankinds history did not have a heaven and hell.

Which I said some believe in works to reach enlightenment. Hindus believe in works in order to be reincarnated into different people or things, not grace. Islam does not believe in grace either. I'm not sure why you would claim either of these did.

Before I answer this, let's backtrack a bit.  Your claim was that xtianity was separate from the others because it was the only one where you could get into heaven through grace alone, and wouldn't get sent to hell by this god, you just were or weren't given grace.

For starters, again, the concepts of an afterlife are not even close to being universal throughout the religions of mankinds history.  Among those who do, many dont or didnt have a heaven or hell, just one place.  Some believed in reincarnation.  Alot of religions just have people die.

Christianity in particular is pretty fuzzy on the subject of a heaven and hell.  I mean, I know you like to pick out the nice parts which give you some idea of a "heaven", but the bible isnt particularly clear overall.  If you believe the bible is a true story, you would have to believe that such a "heaven" was an afterthought.  After all, Adam and Eve weren't supposed to even die.  (Eve wasn't supposed to even exist at first, but I won't get into that).  So...why would there have been a "heaven"?

But as far as xtianity being the unique one where you get to eternal paradise through "grace alone" that's not true.  For islam, take a read through of the Sahih Islam chapter 39, book 15:

http://islam.us/hadith/muslim/039.smt.html (http://islam.us/hadith/muslim/039.smt.html)

For Hinduism, read through the concept of "Kripa" and tell me what you think.

I'm gonna have to let someone else tell you how your view on the "scientific proof" behind your claims is off, because I had a long day at work and am working early tomorrow.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 09, 2011, 11:33:41 PM
Better yet Jetson,but how is the inspired book of the lord need edidting or even translation? why if it is ALL inspired BY God has some of it been edited out? Did the editors not want some of the truth known? Did they feel it was unnessecary for God's followers to know every phrase that was the inspired word of God?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 09, 2011, 11:38:25 PM
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Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.

Actually, yes, they were. http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html (http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html)

I'm not seeing any references to apostles here, nor to anyone who has supposedly witnessed a resurrection.  So...care to try again?

I hope you're not just looking at evidence that xtians were at one time persecuted as some kind of proof.  I could point to all kinds of religions throughout history who have undergone persecution and oppression.  The inquisition comes to mind off the top of my head.  The persecution of the native peoples of central and south America, etc.  In fact, I would say most religions throughout history have spread through force and oppression.  The fact that xtians once were at the receiving end certainly doesn't prove anything. 

But you seemed to want to indicate that xtianity is separate from other religions because the apostles, that is to say the supposed eye witnesses, would have had to allow themselves to be killed for what they knew was a lie.  So I'll ask again, what evidence do you have for how any of them died?

More to follow...
The Government and the United Church had killed of 90% of my peoples population by 1862 So the christians have nothing to whine about as far as persecution goes
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 09, 2011, 11:47:27 PM
Better yet Jetson,but how is the inspired book of the lord need edidting or even translation? why if it is ALL inspired BY God has some of it been edited out? Did the editors not want some of the truth known? Did they feel it was unnessecary for God's followers to know every phrase that was the inspired word of God?

Easy. Every single letter, word, sentence, paragraph, and book/letter, was written by some human.  Whether or not the writings were god inspired is of little matter.  The entire Bible is an incomplete, poorly written, translated and ultra-edited set of mythological stories and non-sense.  And as time marches on, the Bible morphs and morphs into whatever someone wants it to be.

Since there was never a commission to create a Bible, we are left with a hodge-podge of writings that when put together, make about as much sense as interspersing chapters from Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, and Narnia and calling it the inspired works of VoldeFrodoSlan.

What is really unfortunate, is that these ancient writings could be used to help us better understand human history.  But instead, they are falsely given divine authority and claimed to be something WAY beyond what they are.  And instead of us getting a proper understanding of the texts, we have to walk on egg-shells about it, so as not to upset the deluded masses.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 09, 2011, 11:51:46 PM
My point exactly a book inspired by god would NOT require an editor

The secret societys that hold the ancient writings could open up brave new worlds anthrpologically speaking
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 10, 2011, 01:18:05 AM
My point exactly a book inspired by god would NOT require an editor

It's worse than that. A god providing a book to people when 90% or more of those folks were illiterate? Some scholars aren't even convinced JC could read. At least god could have done it in comic book form. Shazzam! Pow!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 10, 2011, 03:08:00 AM
*raises hand*  I have a question.  However, since JT is buried at the moment, I'll wait until the Mod gives me the go signal.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 10, 2011, 03:50:26 AM
WRT the argument that Christianity must be true because it's the only religion that offers "salvation by grace through faith," that's question-begging.  It rests on the premise that the One True Religion must offer salvation by grace through faith.  The notion that the One True Religion must agree with Christian doctrine (and thus, be Christianity) is the issue under discussion.  It can't be simply assumed as a starting premise.

Let us say, for the sake of discussion, that human beings possessed a kind of "receiver" for "the Divine" and/or "the Spirit World" (however defined).  If it were true that all religions agreed on the basics except Christianity, which stood out as unique, this does not provide any evidence that Christianity is accurate and the other religions are wrong.  If anything, it's the other way around.  Example: Let's say you have a bunch of astronomers looking at Mars through telescopes.  They all describe pretty much the same thing--a reddish planet with blotches of darker brown and small polar ice caps.  But there's one astronomer--we'll call him Percival Lowell--who reports seeing an extensive network of artificial canals on the planet.  Proof of an advanced civilization on Mars!

Should we automatically assume that Lowell's perception is the correct one because he isn't like all the others?  To the contrary, we would lean strongly toward accepting the observations of the other astronomers, especially as their description is replicated over and over again by more observers, and Lowell's isn't.

If it were true that "all those other religions" taught that "salvation" had to be earned by good works (such as charity and demonstrations of piety), but that Christianity alone taught salvation by cognitive works (believing the right set of doctrines), relabeled as "faith," then we would be confronted with the agreement of most human observations of "the Divine"/"the Spirit World" on one conception of "how things work" while one smaller group of observers claimed the opposite.  Since "all those other religions" are separated by time and space (origins on different continents in different eras, etc.) they could not have deliberately harmonized their observations, or all come to that agreement based on cognitive bias related to adherence to their in-group.  The "agreement" transcends in-groups, linking groups that could not even have communicated with one another.

On the other side of the scale, is this one in-group pledging loyalty to a different creed.  Looking through their documents, it is pitifully easy to find dogmatic statements designed to stifle inquiry and questioning of the group's teachings.  Example: "But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed."  --Galatians 1:8

From this, a rational person would have to conclude that the multiple, corroborated experiences/observations of "the Divine"/"the Spirit World" coming from all the spiritual teachings of mankind save one are much more likely to be accurate than the willfully closed-minded dogmas of the odd religion out.

However, it is not nearly this simple.  "All those other religions" don't teach "salvation by works" because they don't all even teach a doctrine of "salvation."  The Eastern religions (as I understand them) are about transcendence of or escape from "the self" (the "I" or "ego," which we recognize as our individual persona with its limitations and hang-ups and dramas), not about perpetuating its existence forever in a paradise.  This becomes especially clear in the more "stripped-down" versions, like Zen Buddhism.  Wicca does not have a concept of "salvation" or a notion that there's anything to be "saved" from.  There's a vague notion of a pleasant afterlife called "the Summerlands," but as far as I can tell, getting there is not even a primary concern.  Wiccans generally believe that what you "send out" ("magickally" or otherwise) comes back to you, for some Wiccans, three times over.  What goes around, comes around.  Their rituals are concerned with things in this life--celebrating the natural cycles (solstices, equinoxes, etc.) and achieving desired beneficial results through the use of "magick."

In a nutshell, many religions don't even have a recognizable doctrine of "salvation," much less one of "salvation by works."  And furthermore, Christianity is not without its own implications of salvation by works.  Look up any of the passages where Jesus describes his future act of dividing the sheep and the goats, selecting who goes to Heaven and who goes to Hell.  In all cases, he makes his Judgment Call based on what the people have done, not on whether they got the right answers on a Celestial Quiz.  Example:

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Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, [i.e., claim him as "Lord and Savior"--get the Celestial Quiz right, say the right stuff] shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.

--Matthew 7:21

The surrounding verses emphasize this over and over again.  "By their fruits you shall know them," etc., etc..  At the very least, it must be admitted that the Celestial Quiz has a lab component.  Thus, we cannot say that Christianity teaches a doctrine of "salvation" by faith (believing the right things) alone.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Cyberia on January 10, 2011, 03:52:12 AM
As for scientific reasons God exists. More and more scientists who now believe in the Big Bang are beginning to believe in The Singularity.

Maybe laypeople do.  Cosmologists/physicists don't.  There was no singularity at the BB.  There was something like a singularity.  Singularities don't explode.


This was (as I understand it) an infinitely small, infinitely powerful,

Volume approached zero, but couldn't be zero.  Energy was HUGE, but finite.  We know this because the universe doesn't have infinite mass.


source of energy that exceeded time and space, created everything we now know,

It created spacetime and matter, not exceeded.


and was not controlled by our current scientific laws.

Er, well, no.  We lack, and need, a Theory of Quantum Gravity to explain the details before 10-43 seconds.  BUT.....nothing that happened then can violate currently known laws either.  It is still bound (limited) by current laws.

And yea, we can trace the ENTIRE universe back to 0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000000001 seconds.  Pretty cool, no?


I find it amazing that scientists would recognize this as the cause of the universe (exactly what God is without emotions) but refuse to even acknowledge the existence of an Intelligent Designer.

Water runs downhill.  It forms pretty droplets and pools of it swirl along the way.  Intelligently Designed, or following the laws of physics?  The same is true for the universe.  It's just unraveling according to physics.  Galaxies swirl and clump.  Particles condense and interact.  As a whole it gets quite complex, but at any given time, each interaction/event is rather mundane and regular.  There's no magic to it.


That's irrelevant though. The most important scientific problem with evolution is creation itself.

We get tired of correcting "believers" on this.  Evolution deals with the increasing complexity of biologic lifeforms over time.  Abiogenesis deals with the origin of life itself.  Big Bang Theory deals with the birth of the universe.  VERY different things.


In order for the Big Bang (or any other theory I know of for that matter) to take place it would require that the Laws of Conservation in every way (mass, matter, energy, momentum, etc) be broken in this one instance.

I can't fault you for not knowing the cutting edge of physics.  Although, cutting edge means the last 10ish years.

The breakthrough here came with the realization that Gravity is "negative energy".  Even simple equations show this, and this has been known for a long time.  But physicists just accepted this as a peculiarity with the "sign" and not physically meaningful.  They blew it off. 

Recently (10ish years) they have -- in the course of pursuing Quantum Gravity, which necessitates chasing down all the loose ends -- come to realize that: no, the sign correct and Gravity actually is NEGATIVE.  Gravity is always attractive.  Objects in a gravity field have less energy than the same object outside a gravity field....in other words...gravitationally bound objects are in an energy minima ALWAYS.  It ALWAYS take energy to escape from a gravity field.

There is also a symmetry between matter and gravity.  Matter emits gravity, gravity works on matter.

What this means, is that all the energy/matter in the universe (positive energy) is balanced by an equal amount of gravity (negative energy) at all times.  The TOTAL energy of the universe is precisely ZERO.  Conservation of Energy isn't violated then.

Several big name physicists have publicly written about this recently: Lawrence Krauss and Stephen Hawking.  It's called The zero-energy universe hypothesis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-energy_universe).


It also required a source of energy that did not exist at one time to begin to exist (spontaneous generation).

This happens all the time for quantum mechanical objects, and conveniently, the "like-a-singularity" at the BB was just that.  :)


This phenomenon would be considered impossible to happen at another time in our universe and in order for it to happen whatever created all that we know must have exceeded the physical limits of everything we know.

Correct (finally!)  ....just joshing ya

(speculation below)
It can't happen IN spacetime.  There are energy threshold issues even if it can....ie: It's hard to gather up all the mass of the universe to test this.  This is likely the difference between singulaities and the BB.  Spacetime prevents singularities from exploding, but no spacetime existed at T=0.


That entity would have to be a divine or at least supernatural presence, namely God.

There seems to be an entirely natural, self-consisent way for this to happen.  No diety required.


I've heard some make the claim that the Universe could be eternal but that is impossible because the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics states that there is a gradual loss of energy in our universe meaning at some point there will be no energy left and at another point there had to be a "full" amount of energy (the beginning of the universe).

Well, if the universe is cyclic (and it doesn't appear so currently) then then energy CAN be eternal quite easily, as it just gets recycled at each Big Bang/Big Crunch.

If it isn't, then the Zero-Energy method above works.


I've had many people argue that the impossibility of creation by evolution does not equal creation by God. But my argument is not that evolution simply did not create the universe, it's that a supernatural force is the only possibility to the creation of our universe. That supernatural force is the author and creator of everything, the one whom we call God.

If you were right, you'd be right.  But you're not, so you're not.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 10, 2011, 09:14:40 AM
*raises hand*  I have a question.  However, since JT is buried at the moment, I'll wait until the Mod gives me the go signal.


Hi all,

It is up to JT to give the go signal.  When ever he is ready for more questions, he just has to say so.  Sorry if I was vague on that. 


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 11, 2011, 03:09:39 PM
I'm sorry but this is gonna be another broad response to the questions asked.

Jesus had to be killed because God set up sacrifice as the means to forgiveness of sins. Therefore an ultimate sacrifice was required to forgive sins.

The Bible has multiple translations for clarity. It was edited to be as accurate as possible as the original texts. This has nothing to do with God, just human error.
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Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.

Actually, yes, they were. http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html (http://www9.georgetown.edu/faculty/jod/texts/pliny.html)

I'm not seeing any references to apostles here, nor to anyone who has supposedly witnessed a resurrection.  So...care to try again?

I hope you're not just looking at evidence that xtians were at one time persecuted as some kind of proof.  I could point to all kinds of religions throughout history who have undergone persecution and oppression.  The inquisition comes to mind off the top of my head.  The persecution of the native peoples of central and south America, etc.  In fact, I would say most religions throughout history have spread through force and oppression.  The fact that xtians once were at the receiving end certainly doesn't prove anything. 

But you seemed to want to indicate that xtianity is separate from other religions because the apostles, that is to say the supposed eye witnesses, would have had to allow themselves to be killed for what they knew was a lie.  So I'll ask again, what evidence do you have for how any of them died?

More to follow...
You asked if it was referring to Christians' denying the resurrection and being killed and said no. In fact that is what the letters were about. No, I said nothing about them being persecuted proving Christianity is true. People wouldn't have suffered for their faith during the time immediately after Jesus when they were preaching his existence and power if he wasn't doing miracles and even more so if he didn't exist. That's foolish.

But as far as xtianity being the unique one where you get to eternal paradise through "grace alone" that's not true.  For islam, take a read through of the Sahih Islam chapter 39, book 15:

Their salvation is still through works. The grace of God just helps people get to Heaven in Islam. In Christianity it is grace alone.

kcrady,
The difference here is that everyone is not claiming the same thing (like a scientific observation). They all say that works do something but completely differ on what they do and how they work. Sometimes I like analogies & sometimes I don't because you can make one up for anything so it applies to what you're saying. My point was all other religions are different from Christianity in that major way but also very different from each other (therefore it's not like scientists all making one claim). If you want me to give you verses confirming salvation by grace I will, but it's really a waste of your time to try and argue with me that the Bible doesn't teach salvation by grace.

Quote from: Cyberia
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BUT.....nothing that happened then can violate currently known laws either.  It is still bound (limited) by current laws.
Then the Big Bang is impossible. I'll respond to the rest of what you said later, right now I have to leave.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Tykster on January 11, 2011, 03:15:00 PM

The Bible has multiple translations for clarity.

Needed a new signature, thanks....  ;D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 11, 2011, 03:26:56 PM
The Bible has multiple translations for clarity.

You're kidding right? This is a joke,yes? Please, somebody tell me this is just a Poe and this isn't a serious statement.

It was edited to be as accurate as possible as the original texts.

So........ the bible was edited, to as accurate as possible to the original texts.

It was edited (a word meaning to modify, adapt, or delete) to be accurate to the original.

You know what,I'm trying to think of a smart-ass comment that I could use to mock this. But honestly, I don't think I can top this.

"It was edited to be as accurate as possible to the original texts." This is pure gold.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 11, 2011, 03:39:46 PM
About Jesus sacrifice:

* Wouldn´t it have been better to just have the disciples nail him to the cross then? Why should Jews suffer endless hate and persecution for just playing along in God´s cosmic plan.

* Also, since Adam and Eve never existed in the first place, how did humans become in need of atonement for sins?

* What kind of loving and merciful God would set up a system of blood sacrifices to forgive sins? Wouldn´t sacrifice an innocent animal or human be considered a new sin? So you forgive a sin by making a new even worse one??

Atonement and salvation through blood sacrifice - The Atheist Experience #628 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zeVVk9mZ0GE#ws)

The Atheist Experience #622 God sacrificing himself to himself and his inferior design (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o3F5Rmsiejg#)

Christians Should Thank Jews For Crucifying Jesus - Atheist Experience 334 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RVuogrNVi2A#)

Why did God want Jesus to be sacrificed? (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jz6XRwtM2jg#)

What is the ultimate sacrifice that mankind knows ? - The Atheist Experience show (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bNQhV_OBlok#)

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 11, 2011, 04:34:05 PM
Jesus had to be killed because God set up sacrifice as the means to forgiveness of sins. Therefore an ultimate sacrifice was required to forgive sins.
And who required that sacrifice?  God. So there is no "had" here at all. God *wanted* to use blood sacrifice as a forgiveness of sins.  And sacrifice means a permanent loss.  Where is it here?  An animal's death is permanent, why change the rules for JC? 
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The Bible has multiple translations for clarity. It was edited to be as accurate as possible as the original texts. This has nothing to do with God, just human error.
funny how these "multiple translations for clarity" have caused many wars and deaths.  AGain, reality shows that you are simply wrong.
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Their salvation is still through works. The grace of God just helps people get to Heaven in Islam. In Christianity it is grace alone.
Except when James and Jesus say it isn't. 
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People wouldn't have suffered for their faith during the time immediately after Jesus when they were preaching his existence and power if he wasn't doing miracles and even more so if he didn't exist. That's foolish.
yes it is foolish and unfortunately people do it all of the time. See "Heaven's Gate". See all of those Christian sects that other Christians tried (or suceeded in) exterminating. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 11, 2011, 04:44:19 PM
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People wouldn't have suffered for their faith during the time immediately after Jesus when they were preaching his existence and power if he wasn't doing miracles and even more so if he didn't exist. That's foolish.
yes it is foolish and unfortunately people do it all of the time. See "Heaven's Gate". See all of those Christian sects that other Christians tried (or suceeded in) exterminating.
Velkin, I'm sure it won't surprise you that JT was already told that on page one of the thread when he brought the exact same argument. He chose to conveniently ignore that point of my reply to him.

I would not be surprised not to see a reply to this here either.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 11, 2011, 05:01:29 PM

Their salvation is still through works. The grace of God just helps people get to Heaven in Islam. In Christianity it is grace alone.

What about the parts of the bible where it states that god simply chooses who goes to hell and who goes to heaven. That he, in fact, chose whether that would happen before you were born, irregardless of anything you might do? What about the parts that say that god deliberately condemns people to hell? Or how he causes some people to disbelieve in him in order to condemn them? You really have never read that book, have you?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 11, 2011, 06:22:42 PM
Vessels of wrath they are.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 11, 2011, 09:25:17 PM
Jesus had to be killed because God set up sacrifice as the means to forgiveness of sins. Therefore an ultimate sacrifice was required to forgive sins.

Why the hell would a divine, supposedly all-powerful, being require himself to sacrifice himself in order to forgive “sins”?  Do you honestly feel this makes rational sense?

And how does that jibe with the whole worldwide flood tale?  I mean, if he was doing that to wipe out all the “evil” people (and “evil” animals presumably), why not just forgive Noah and his family of such “sins” right then and there and start everyone off with a clean slate?  Or for that matter why not just come down and sacrifice himself to himself then instead?  Seems odd he would change his approach like that.

And what exactly was accomplished with this “forgiveness of sins”?  I wasnt alive 2,000 years ago, I didnt have any “sins” back then.  Does this mean that my current “sins” are forgiven but those committed by people 2300 years ago werent?  What was different in China if you died a few days before this supposed event as compared to if you were born a few days later?  Did anyone notice the difference? 

And please tell me how this was a “sacrifice” anyways.  If you believe in the whole “3 divine persons in one god” idea (which also makes no sense by the way), it wasnt his “son”, it was him.  And he was pretty much just taking a quick vacation down to earth (although inexplicably didnt do a thing for 30 years of it), got tortured a bit then when right back to heaven.  Getting nailed to a cross might be pretty painful, but it’s nothing compare to the years of intense suffering many cancer victims go through.  Certainly nothing compared to the hell on earth of “locked-in syndrome”.  Certainly nothing compared to the slow agonizing death of ALS.  If the Jesus of the tale had lived through any of those afflictions, that might be a bit more impressive.

Sorry, it makes no sense, and it didnt happen.  Time to get over that and move on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 11, 2011, 09:34:04 PM
You asked if it was referring to Christians' denying the resurrection and being killed and said no. In fact that is what the letters were about.

No actually I asked you how you know how the apostles died (or for that matter anyone how who supposedly witnessed such a “resurrection” taking place died).  I did that here:

Why don't you enlighten us with how you know how the apostles died.  Please include all contemporary accounts documented at that time, as well as evidence that they were given the option to recant their beliefs but refused.  Otherwise, can we dispense with this nonsense of "all the apostles died for their beliefs"?

Then again here:

Were Pliny's letters to Trajan referring to the apostles?  Were they referring to xtians denying the resurrection?  No.  So yes, please find more sources.

And again here:

I'm not seeing any references to apostles here, nor to anyone who has supposedly witnessed a resurrection.  So...care to try again?

Now, finally, I ask it in bold and in caps:

DO YOU HAVE ANY EVIDENCE FOR HOW THE APOSTLES DIED??? DO YOU HAVE ANY EVIDENCE FOR HOW ANYBODY ELSE THAT WOULD HAVE WITNESSED SUCH A RESURRECTION DIED???
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 11, 2011, 09:52:51 PM
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No, I said nothing about them being persecuted proving Christianity is true. People wouldn't have suffered for their faith during the time immediately after Jesus when they were preaching his existence and power if he wasn't doing miracles and even more so if he didn't exist.

They would if they hadnt actually witnessed any such thing.  They would have if they had just been told such nonsense and lived in a time where such things couldnt be recorded and word of mouth was pretty much the only way news spread, leading of course to exaggeration and addition of little embellishments and “miracles” to the stories as they went from person to person.  They would if they really knew nothing else of what we now know through modern science.  They would if they had convinced themselves that this was how they were going to get to eternal paradise. 

Sort of like how one flies planes into skyscrapers or blows themselves up in crowded marketplaces to get to heaven and be with their 72 virgins.  Sort of like how one asphyxiates himself to get on the spaceship behind Halle Bopp comet.  Or drinks kool-aid laced with cyanide.  Etc etc. etc.

They would have died for such beliefs the same way that many thousands of natives in the americas died for their beliefs rather than convert to xtianity.  They would have died for such beliefs the ways the Cathars or the Jews would have during the inquisition.  I could go on...

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That's foolish.

No, actually “foolish” is being an adult in the 21st century believing in invisible beings in the sky. 

Very “foolish” is believing that such a god would just expose himself in a small population in a localized region of the world in a specific time in history where there was really no means of recording such events, and expecting them to get the word out to everyone else gradually over the following couple of millenia.

Extremely “foolish” would be believing in today’s and age in tales of talking snakes, men staying alive in a fish’s stomach, talking donkeys, etc etc.

And “MORONIC” would be to make a statement such as this:

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The Bible has multiple translations for clarity. It was edited to be as accurate as possible as the original texts. This has nothing to do with God, just human error.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 11, 2011, 10:08:30 PM
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Their salvation is still through works. The grace of God just helps people get to Heaven in Islam. In Christianity it is grace alone.

From Sahih Islam, book 39:

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Chapter 15: NONE WOULD ATTAIN SALVATION BECAUSE OF HIS DEEDS BUT IT IS THROUGH LORD'S MERCY (THAT HE WOULD ATTIAN (sic) THAT)

(source: http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/muslim/039.smt.html (http://www.usc.edu/schools/college/crcc/engagement/resources/texts/muslim/hadith/muslim/039.smt.html))

Now granted, you can probably point to another of the writings in islam stating something a bit different.  But then again, I could point to plenty of places in the judeo-christian bible about how you would need “works” to get this “grace” from this supposed “god”. 

And that’s really the problem with religions isnt it?  You just take the parts of the stories you like, discard the parts you dont, and then you create this “god” in your imagination that fits all the things you want it to be. 

There’s nothing that separates christianity from any of the other thousands of religions throughout mankind’s history.  It’s all just mythology.  You happened to be born in a time and place where christianity was the local cultural superstition.  Would have been different had you been born in Athens in 5th century BCE, or 6th century China, or in the Andes mountains in the 13th century, or modern day Kandahar.  It’s just mythology, nothing more.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 12, 2011, 08:46:46 AM
Velkin, I'm sure it won't surprise you that JT was already told that on page one of the thread when he brought the exact same argument. He chose to conveniently ignore that point of my reply to him.

I would not be surprised not to see a reply to this here either.

no, it doesnt' suprise me a damn bit. I figured *someone* had to have mentioned this way earlier. I do find these willfully ignorant liars for Christ quite amusing when they evidently think no one notices their actions. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 12, 2011, 02:31:08 PM
The Bible has multiple translations for clarity. It was edited to be as accurate as possible as the original texts. This has nothing to do with God, just human error.
So what does that say about this 'God' that he/it allows his/its message to be potentially screwed up by humans considering how important it supposedly is?

Think about this.
If a god created and truly loves humans and wants them to be able to join him/her/it in an eternal paradise or heaven
AND it has rules that it wants the humans to follow OR wants them to have 'faith' in it to attain this goal...
why would this rule book/instruction manual EVER be open to interpretation. There would be no 'context' - everything would be straightforward and easily understood. This god is supposedly omnipotent - there would be no need for it to be translated. The words would 'magically' change to the reader's native language.

Either a) your god does not really love his creation
b) your god is an incompetent buffoon
OR
c) your god does not exist.

Hmmm....
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 12, 2011, 08:27:56 PM
I hate to be like what every other Christian you probably see on this site is like. I hate to leave because I could argue all day against your points. But that's irrelevant since it's pretty apparent everyone on this site is already very determined in their beliefs and it's obvious that many (not all) just have a blatant hate for religion/God in every way. Claiming that Muhammad, Jesus, and Siddhartha are all made up is just ridiculous. Even if all these people were real that wouldn't make any of their religions true, but people feel the need to try and disprove their very existence because of their strong ill-will toward religion. This clearly marks someone who has lost all open-mindedness and true research and resorted to accepting and investigating anything that could even possibly show religion isn't true. It's not searching for the truth, it's just finding ways to claim God isn't the truth. There are people on this site whom I feel would have a reasonable conversation/debate and be open-minded. But far too many post comments that aren't even worth responding to and that attack parts of Christianity they know nothing about. I understand not believing in God, but attacking a religion you don't actually understand is just sad. At least search for the truth and not additional ways to insult people. I know that some users are going to make fun of me and claim they hurt my feelings, but you didn't. Go ahead and make fun I really don't care. I enjoy debating and seeing other people's beliefs but when people aren't even willing to be reasonable it's just frustrating. And I would stay on despite the frustration but unfortunately I don't have enough time. Maybe I'll comment on posts occasionally but I just didn't realize the time committment holding up this post would require. I'm sorry to bail on you guys (and girls) but my time here is over  :'( Happy camping!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 12, 2011, 08:55:19 PM
Claiming that Muhammad, Jesus, and Siddhartha are all made up is just ridiculous

 So you believe these others existed? so how about Zues,Mercury,Odin,Posieden,Aries The Raven,Thor Isis,Horus are the NOT made up,or is it ridiculus to think they are as real as your 3 examples
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: rev45 on January 12, 2011, 09:03:20 PM
I hate to see you go but I also don't like to see you misrepresenting many people's positions on religion.  Some here may genuinely hate religion.  But if you were to stick around you would see that many here are asking religion the hard questions and when theists try to answer them, they find themselves out of their league.  It's not that we're close-minded toward a god or gods existing, its the theists who can't answer the questions to any sort of satisfaction. From what I see the discussion isn't about disproving a god, it's about refuting the claims of theists.  And the claims tend to be the same thing over and over.  I've seen theists ask people on this board to consider points that they bring up and when those points get shot down quickly, its because this board has seen the same arguments many times.  It's not that we've not considered your religious belief to be true, it's that we've found no answers to our questions in it. 

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Cyberia on January 12, 2011, 09:17:38 PM
Dang, and I was hoping to learn why the Big Bang was impossible.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: rev45 on January 12, 2011, 09:25:31 PM
^ http://www.seekthetruth.org/bb.html (http://www.seekthetruth.org/bb.html)
Here you go.  The entire theory refuted in about 50 sentences. ;)  Read if you want to drop a few IQ points.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 09:52:57 PM
It's not that we're close-minded toward a god or gods existing, its the theists who can't answer the questions to any sort of satisfaction.

What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof. We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof. The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.





Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: wright on January 12, 2011, 10:14:38 PM

What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof.

I will give you the benefit of doubt and assume that you don't mean this as a general statement. Certainly I know Christians who are very shrewd, intelligent people about lots of things. It's just that they do not apply their critical thinking to their religious beliefs.

We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof. The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.

Bolds mine. Unfortunately, I think you're right. Can you see how this unquestioning acceptance of what one is told is not a good thing?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Asmoday on January 12, 2011, 10:39:12 PM
I hate to be like what every other Christian you probably see on this site is like. I hate to leave because I could argue all day against your points.
Isn't it a strange coincidence that practically all Christians who claimed to be "open to questions" and who would love to "argue all day against [our] points" have to leave all of a sudden and are just to busy to be able to continue posting if their arguments get shot down one after the other?

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But that's irrelevant since it's pretty apparent everyone on this site is already very determined in their beliefs
I seriously wonder what you expected? That people would convert en masse?
That we never ever heard these arguments before and that there would be no responses countering said arguments?

We're open minded but that does not mean we gobble your arguments up without thinking. Open mindedness doesn't mean that you can't defend your point of view.

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and it's obvious that many (not all) just have a blatant hate for religion/God in every way.
And here it's getting ridiculous. Nobody is hating God here. We don't believe in God. We don't hate entities we deem fictional.

I'd rather say that you are not used to having your arguments countered and properly examined. Posting on an atheist board certainly leads to different results than posting on a christian board where at least half the thread will consist of "You're so right! Bless the Lord!" no matter what you actually said as long as the last line reads either "so God did it" or "that proves Jesus was real."

And, let's face it, your arguments were lousy. I'm not even saying this in a mocking way; they were simply bad. Your tries at presenting extra-biblical contemporary sources for the existence of Jesus are more than enough evidence of that.
First you list a Christian apologist and saint as nonbeliever who backed up the empty tomb story (Gee...I still wonder how that particular mix-up could have happened...  &)) then as your second attempt you try to sell us a medieval Jewish parody of the gospel as "contemporary" and "historical" evidence and last but not least you try to drop the bomb on us with accounts of Tacitus and Josephus (of which the former is dubious and of which the latter is a known forgery).

And you seriously wonder why your arguments were met with contempt at best?

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Claiming that Muhammad, Jesus, and Siddhartha are all made up is just ridiculous.
I think you have not understood my argument at all.
I even further clarified it in my response to Azdgari.

Most atheists will not deny the possibility that an actual human was the basis for a particular myth but there is no evidence that the aforementioned religious figures existed as described by the respective religious texts.

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Even if all these people were real that wouldn't make any of their religions true, but people feel the need to try and disprove their very existence because of their strong ill-will toward religion.
Emphasis added.

I'd rather call it a strong determination to find out the truth and reality. Just because many people believe something as a given does not mean it is that way.

You base your life on ancient writings. Doesn't that alone warrant that these writings are subjected to the same, if not even greater scrutiny than "normal" historic texts that make extraordinary claims?

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This clearly marks someone who has lost all open-mindedness and true research and resorted to accepting and investigating anything that could even possibly show religion isn't true.
Quite the contrary.

It is a sign of open-mindedness to look at all kinds of research and not just accept the status quo.

And I can't help but wonder what it says about your open-mindedness when all you brought forth in defense of your position are forgeries, parodies and biased sources and you run when you get called out for every single one of them?

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It's not searching for the truth, it's just finding ways to claim God isn't the truth.
If there existed scientific evidence in favor of God's existence I'd happily present that, too.

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There are people on this site whom I feel would have a reasonable conversation/debate and be open-minded. But far too many post comments that aren't even worth responding to and that attack parts of Christianity they know nothing about. I understand not believing in God, but attacking a religion you don't actually understand is just sad.
Let's be honest here, even the posts you responded to you haven't actually answered.

That you are unable to answer the questions, which in turn makes the discussion uncomfortable for you, is not our fault.

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At least search for the truth and not additional ways to insult people.
Did it ever occur to you that we are doing just that? And that "the truth" does not happen to be what you believe in?
Which incidentally might also be the reason why you find the responses to you so outrageous?

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I know that some users are going to make fun of me and claim they hurt my feelings, but you didn't. Go ahead and make fun I really don't care.
For someone who doesn't care you certainly tried very hard to write a post that says you actually do.

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I enjoy debating and seeing other people's beliefs but when people aren't even willing to be reasonable it's just frustrating.
I'm sorry that I have to correct you on this but there is a difference between "being reasonable" and "being gullible."

To say it bluntly, you expected us to be the latter. You could not hold yourself up in this debate because practically all your arguments have been shot down rather quickly.

I don't doubt that you enjoy debating but I do doubt that you have debated with many people before who have insisted on you backing up your arguments properly or who called you out on the fallacies you use. The way you handled replies pointing out such things is evidence for that.

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And I would stay on despite the frustration but unfortunately I don't have enough time. Maybe I'll comment on posts occasionally but I just didn't realize the time committment holding up this post would require. I'm sorry to bail on you guys (and girls) but my time here is over  :'( Happy camping!
When you started here I thought you could bring something new to the table. After all good Christian members are few and far between.

Well, let's just say that after your "mistake" with Justin Martyr I already knew it would be disappointing. And that you "suddenly" discovered you don't have enough time to continue posting here did not really come as a surprise.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: rev45 on January 12, 2011, 10:42:00 PM
What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof. We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.
This is one of the arguments that is brought up time and time again called Russell's Teapot.  Will you accept without proof that there is a china teapot orbiting the sun and it's too small to be seen with our best telescopes?  We can come up with an almost unlimited amount of ideas for which no proof will ever be found.  I would hope that you would need something more than just a person's word before you would believe what they say.  Do I know with 100% certainty that a god does not exist?  No.  All I can do is listen to the claims put forward by someone who does believe and make my decision based on all (if any) evidence they bring. 

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 12, 2011, 10:48:20 PM
It's not that we're close-minded toward a god or gods existing, its the theists who can't answer the questions to any sort of satisfaction.

What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof. We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof. The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.

No, no, no.  Why do I have to keep repeating myself to you?  We are NOT in the same situation AT ALL.  They are not even CLOSE to the same.  Please try to understand this very, very simple idea.  Atheists, in general, do not claim to KNOW anything with absolute certainty.  They just don't.  At times, it may seem that when we say something like "there are no gods", or "god is imaginary", that we are making some claim of absolute certainty, but we are not.  Most of us would gladly accept a proven god - when something is proven, what would be the point of denying its existence?

It means that, there is NO EVIDENCE or PROOF of any god.  That's all.  And some of us, like me, will push that idea a bit harder, simply because we have so little reason to even consider that a god was anything BUT imaginary.  Keep in mind that you would be very hard pressed to find an atheist who will claim there are no gods with 100% certainty, but...to them, it is pretty much the same thing as saying there are no microscopic purple mammals hiding under our eyelids.  What is the point of pushing such an idea?  Well, to many atheists, it amounts to about the same thing as positing that a specific god is actually real, and really cares about you and me.  It's silly, like Santa!

On the other hand, far too many theists fly through here and claim that they know their god is real, and that they know their god cares abou them, and yes, even that they know that they will be accepted in the kingdom of heaven, simply because they have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior.  That is the epitome of close-minded.  They will NEVER accept the idea that their god is not real.  It's kind of sad, really.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 10:56:23 PM
I will give you the benefit of doubt and assume that you don't mean this as a general statement. Certainly I know Christians who are very shrewd, intelligent people about lots of things. It's just that they do not apply their critical thinking to their religious beliefs.


But when the buy they are far more inclined to buy a concept.

We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof. The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.

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Bolds mine. Unfortunately, I think you're right. Can you see how this unquestioning acceptance of what one is told is not a good thing?

But they/we/me don't accept everything. For example, myself and many others see churches or formal religions as just man made.

Many of us will also have different view points at the same time. That may at first seem like a contradiction but it is not. Our one consistent belief is the answer is some being or beings. That is the starting pont if you like. Just as your starting point is no beings of any type provide the answer. But sometimes you might think there is only one universe at other times your view could be there are many universes.

Both sides also have their own bias in how they see evidence.







Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 11:09:06 PM
This is one of the arguments that is brought up time and time again called Russell's Teapot.  Will you accept without proof that there is a china teapot orbiting the sun and it's too small to be seen with our best telescopes?  We can come up with an almost unlimited amount of ideas for which no proof will ever be found.  I would hope that you would need something more than just a person's word before you would believe what they say.  Do I know with 100% certainty that a god does not exist?  No.  All I can do is listen to the claims put forward by someone who does believe and make my decision based on all (if any) evidence they bring.

This the key point. As a "type" we don't need the same amount of evidence as you need and we don't collect the evidence for reproduction at any time.

But what we believe has a degree of it "feels right and looks right".

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Do I know with 100% certainty that a god does not exist?  No


Likewise, I don't know with 100% certainty that God or a god or gods etc. exist or existed.

But for me it seems more likely that God or gods are the solution to how all this got here.

One thing that often crossed my mind is that if we had another sense then the answer could be obvious. Imagine if you will that human life becomes extinct on earth and a bunch of very advanced aliens arrive. However, these aliens have possesed th sense of sight. Could you imagine the difficulties they would have with windows in buildings and cars. Why did these earthlings make all these structures weaker with this material etc


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 12, 2011, 11:12:49 PM
Dinosaurs, can you go create a topic in the Introduction section, and tell us about yourself?  Your world views, religious beliefs, background, etc.?  It appears that you are not a typical Christian to me...it will help us in understanding where you are coming from in these replies.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 11:20:00 PM

On the other hand, far too many theists fly through here and claim that they know their god is real, and that they know their god cares abou them, and yes, even that they know that they will be accepted in the kingdom of heaven, simply because they have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior.  That is the epitome of close-minded.  They will NEVER accept the idea that their god is not real.  It's kind of sad, really.

OK. You know Apollo 11 landed on the moon. How do you know that. What real evidence do you have except what you have read or seen on TV etc.

But you are 100% certain Apollo 11 went to the moon but with zero real evidence.

You are 100% certain because it all seems possible and there is no way you could see a conspiracy being pulled off.

But to a "moon landing hoax" person you are totally close minded.

What you are failing to grasp with this topic is as I have already posted and that is how different people see "evidence"

From my perspective it is impossible to understand how you can so clearly eliminate a superior being or beings from the equation.





Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 11:21:30 PM
Dinosaurs, can you go create a topic in the Introduction section, and tell us about yourself?  Your world views, religious beliefs, background, etc.?  It appears that you are not a typical Christian to me...it will help us in understanding where you are coming from in these replies.

In what way am I not typical?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 12, 2011, 11:28:14 PM

On the other hand, far too many theists fly through here and claim that they know their god is real, and that they know their god cares abou them, and yes, even that they know that they will be accepted in the kingdom of heaven, simply because they have accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior.  That is the epitome of close-minded.  They will NEVER accept the idea that their god is not real.  It's kind of sad, really.

OK. You know Apollo 11 landed on the moon. How do you know that. What real evidence do you have except what you have read or seen on TV etc.

But you are 100% certain Apollo 11 went to the moon but with zero real evidence.

You are 100% certain because it all seems possible and there is no way you could see a conspiracy being pulled off.

But to a "moon landing hoax" person you are totally close minded.

What you are failing to grasp with this topic is as I have already posted and that is how different people see "evidence"

From my perspective it is impossible to understand how you can so clearly eliminate a superior being or beings from the equation.

Hey, no one is asking everyone to believe everything they see and hear.  No one is telling you that you MUST believe science, or NASA, or THE FUCKING ASTRONAUTS that flew up there and walked around (I have personally met Buzz Aldrin, not that it would prove he went to the moon, of course.)  It's OK to consider hoaxes, and conspiracies....but - what is the point?  Why?  When we spend all of that money, time, effort, and resources to put men on the moon, and then televise it, bring back samples, leave equipment up there...why would anyone bother with such a HOAX?  And why would anyone have a need to follow such nonsense?

Were you standing there in person when the rocket shot up from the ground and blasted out of our atmosphere?  I was in an airplane and I literally saw the space shuttle on its rocket shoot through the cloud bank and scream into space, out of sight.  Where in the world was it going? 

Anyway, I will be patient for a bit longer and just remind you that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE.  But we really need to look for those things that are demonstrable, real, and useful.  Gods - eh, not very useful.  Not to mention they don't really explain anything.  When someone say's God did it, they are being completely lazy.  They don't care about the truth.  They WANT God to be real.  There's nothing great about that at all.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 12, 2011, 11:28:34 PM
I will give you the benefit of doubt and assume that you don't mean this as a general statement. Certainly I know Christians who are very shrewd, intelligent people about lots of things. It's just that they do not apply their critical thinking to their religious beliefs.


But when the buy they are far more inclined to buy a concept.

We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof. The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.

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Bolds mine. Unfortunately, I think you're right. Can you see how this unquestioning acceptance of what one is told is not a good thing?

But they/we/me don't accept everything. For example, myself and many others see churches or formal religions as just man made.

Many of us will also have different view points at the same time. That may at first seem like a contradiction but it is not. Our one consistent belief is the answer is some being or beings. That is the starting pont if you like. Just as your starting point is no beings of any type provide the answer. But sometimes you might think there is only one universe at other times your view could be there are many universes.

Both sides also have their own bias in how they see evidence.
YA YA the 38,000+ denominations if Christianity are here because they all AGREE on everything....And no I dont know if they landed on the moon....all I know is what they told me......I am suspicous as to why they have not returned as technology is now 10,000X what it was in 1969
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 12, 2011, 11:29:20 PM
Dinosaurs, can you go create a topic in the Introduction section, and tell us about yourself?  Your world views, religious beliefs, background, etc.?  It appears that you are not a typical Christian to me...it will help us in understanding where you are coming from in these replies.

In what way am I not typical?

Well, if you are, let us know!  Describe your upbringing, and how you came to your beliefs - but not here, do a new thread in the Intro section.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 12, 2011, 11:47:25 PM

Were you standing there in person when the rocket shot up from the ground and blasted out of our atmosphere?  I was in an airplane and I literally saw the space shuttle on its rocket shoot through the cloud bank and scream into space, out of sight.  Where in the world was it going? 


Just a small point, the Space Shuttle not only did not go to the moon but in fact it only does low earth orbit.

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Anyway, I will be patient for a bit longer and just remind you that ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE.  But we really need to look for those things that are demonstrable, real, and useful.  Gods - eh, not very useful.  Not to mention they don't really explain anything.  When someone say's God did it, they are being completely lazy.  They don't care about the truth.  They WANT God to be real.  There's nothing great about that at all.

While we are on space, Werner von Braun was a "born again". Hardly a lazy and stupid man.

To many peope God is demonstrable, real and useful.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 12, 2011, 11:53:35 PM
In what way can he be demonstrated?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:00:59 AM
If he were demonstrable,real and useful NONE of us would be here argueing about it now would we?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 12:01:21 AM

Just a small point, the Space Shuttle not only did not go to the moon but in fact it only does low earth orbit.

While we are on space, Werner von Braun was a "born again". Hardly a lazy and stupid man.

To many peope God is demonstrable, real and useful.

Really?  I thought we had a runway on the moon, for the shuttle to land?  Man, I need to get out more!

Yes, being born again is nice and all, but if it means he believes that there is a god out there, he is delusional at best on that particular side of his brain.

God being demonstrable to many people is a fun thought, but it in no way actually demonstrates the existence of said god.  At best, it demonstrates than many people think a god is real, and useful.  Quaint, I suppose. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:03:05 AM
In what way can he be demonstrated?

It is demomnstrated to the person who believes it is demonstrated. It is really that simple.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:04:49 AM
Well, if you are, let us know!  Describe your upbringing, and how you came to your beliefs - but not here, do a new thread in the Intro section.

Done
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:06:20 AM
In what way can he be demonstrated?

It is demomnstrated to the person who believes it is demonstrated. It is really that simple.
Then why are you here -seriously,why?,Belief is not demonstratable proof
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:08:28 AM
If he were demonstrable,real and useful NONE of us would be here argueing about it now would we?

Again, in the eyes of the beholder.

To your eyes the solution will come via science. To my eyes we will never have the science. I posted an article yesterday by Paul Davies on pre Big Bang. He says "nothing" so let's pack our bags and go home.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:12:25 AM
what solution do you think I am thinking,where science has the answer? In your bio you did not state GOD ,just a higher power
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:12:34 AM
Belief is not demonstratable proof

Belief is the result of evidence, feeling, you name it.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:15:06 AM
That is no answer,that is using circular logic,again I ask WHAT EVIDENCE are you speaking of ?is it measurable?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 12:15:35 AM
Belief is not demonstratable proof

Belief is the result of evidence, feeling, you name it.

Yes, we get this sort of dialog now and then from some folks.  But honestly, it doesn't add value to what science is doing to help us figure stuff out.  For that, once we have a reasonable hypothesis about something, we have to remove feeling and imagination and get to the work of finding evidence and facts, testing, proving, and falsifying in order to clear away the clutter, and get to some level of truth, even if it is not exactly right.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:16:12 AM
what solution do you think I am thinking,where science has the answer? In your bio you did not state GOD ,just a higher power

I did say at the moment I am putting more store in the Bible which hence means God but it is also a phase I have been through before.

But the "higher power" has been my view for most of my adult life except from about age 20 to 32 or so.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:19:36 AM
Born in Europe or america? If you had read the Koran from an early age would you believe in that form of god?  You said you had evidence care to share......Then maybe we can discuss my evidence for bigfoot in an indepth manner
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 12:22:16 AM
How can there be a "higher power" (Deism by the way)?  Can't there only be something simpler in nature rather than something more complex going back in time?  Every day we are making discoveries about our universe that tells us there are natural processes at work on fundemental level of physics that we can calculate and make very reliable predictions.  How can a higher power be predictable in nature!?  This logic has never computed with me.

And speaking of logic, I see you are a programmer.  What came first and why...Windows 7 or Dos 6.0? Do you think it first took the complexity of Windows 7 to create Dos 6.0? You do see where I'm going with this higher power philosophy right?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:23:36 AM
That is no answer,that is using circular logic,again I ask WHAT EVIDENCE are you speaking of ?is it measurable?

I would not call it measurable in the sense you are looking for but it must be for me otherwise I would not hold the belief.

Consider for a moment various major news items. Could be war in Iraq, whatever you like. Different people will all have the same evidence but their views will be different. I would even expect atheists to form different views even though they have the same evidence.

Can you give me one piece of evidence that means this whole show got itself going all by itself. And don't do the usual.....No but I know there was no being or beings involved...

Give me the evidence.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:24:48 AM
In what way can he be demonstrated?

It is demomnstrated to the person who believes it is demonstrated. It is really that simple.
It was demonstrated to Joseph Smith some years ago,why are you not a Mormon.......he is as believable as any current updated censored version of any of the bibles out there.......I also am adept at using circular logic
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:25:11 AM
Born in Europe or america? If you had read the Koran from an early age would you believe in that form of god?  You said you had evidence care to share......Then maybe we can discuss my evidence for bigfoot in an indepth manner

Australia.

But Islam is an Abrahamic religion.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 12:26:34 AM
That is no answer,that is using circular logic,again I ask WHAT EVIDENCE are you speaking of ?is it measurable?

I would not call it measurable in the sense you are looking for but it must be for me otherwise I would not hold the belief.

Consider for a moment various major news items. Could be war in Iraq, whatever you like. Different people will all have the same evidence but their views will be different. I would even expect atheists to form different views even though they have the same evidence.

Can you give me one piece of evidence that means this whole show got itself going all by itself. And don't do the usual.....No but I know there was no being or beings involved...

Give me the evidence.

Atheists don't know how it got started with the exception of the big bang.  But prior to that, we just don;t know.  No one does.  Except, of course, the theists!  Instead of being honest, they use their "feelings" to decide that there must be a god, or a higher power at the helm.  It just feels right...but it explains nothing.  See the difference?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:28:14 AM
Every day we are making discoveries about our universe that tells us there are natural processes at work on fundemental level of physics that we can calculate and make very reliable predictions. 

And just think for a moment. Science has gone from Steady State to Big Bang....so science has introduced a beginning....and as well can't go pre Big Bang.

Sometimes I think with all its money the catholic church funded a Big Bang theory :)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:28:34 AM
That is no answer,that is using circular logic,again I ask WHAT EVIDENCE are you speaking of ?is it measurable?

I would not call it measurable in the sense you are looking for but it must be for me otherwise I would not hold the belief.

Consider for a moment various major news items. Could be war in Iraq, whatever you like. Different people will all have the same evidence but their views will be different. I would even expect atheists to form different views even though they have the same evidence.

Can you give me one piece of evidence that means this whole show got itself going all by itself. And don't do the usual.....No but I know there was no being or beings involved...

Give me the evidence.
The Raven discovered my people on a Naikoon beach hiding inside a clamshell about 12,000 years ago. The "story" has been passed down since the "dawn of time". That is how I know you are worshipping a false diety
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:30:40 AM
It was demonstrated to Joseph Smith some years ago,why are you not a Mormon.......he is as believable as any current updated censored version of any of the bibles out there.......I also am adept at using circular logic
[/quote]

But I have already said the Bible has been a phase for me at different times. Also, my phases with the Bible are Old Testament so I am not Christian in that sense.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 12:34:03 AM
Every day we are making discoveries about our universe that tells us there are natural processes at work on fundemental level of physics that we can calculate and make very reliable predictions. 

And just think for a moment. Science has gone from Steady State to Big Bang....so science has introduced a beginning....and as well can't go pre Big Bang.

Science goes as far as it can go with the technology of its era and makes theories based on this data.  It was shown in 1929 by Hubble that the steady state universe was completely wrong and changed cosmology virtually overnight.  What Hubble showed is that galaxies were moving away from eacth other.  And rolling back time all the matter in the universe must have been closer together.  Makes sense right!?

Now, what we don't know and are able humbly admit is that we don't know what was pre big bang and was started it all.  But science certainly doesn't take the smug, arrogant position like christians making extrodinary claims with perfect confidence.  You can see the difference right...?

But thanks for taking the ignorant stance that we will never know more tomorrow than we do today. Nice.  This was proven wrong not only yesterday, but again today.  How many more days do you want to stick with that type of mindset?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:34:57 AM
So because you dont know that answers,you stop seeking knowledge?So OT is that to say you dont believe Jesus will save anybody?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JeffPT on January 13, 2011, 12:37:43 AM
what solution do you think I am thinking,where science has the answer? In your bio you did not state GOD ,just a higher power

I did say at the moment I am putting more store in the Bible which hence means God but it is also a phase I have been through before.

But the "higher power" has been my view for most of my adult life except from about age 20 to 32 or so.

I see the "higher power" belief as stemming from a lack of available knowledge.  I've thought about this one a lot lately so bear with me..

On one side, say... the far right side... you have the hard core believer.  Usually this believer has at best a rudamentary knowledge about science and the way it works.  When this is the case, it is easy to believe in a "higher power" because there are so many unanswered questions.   

On the other side, say... the far left side... you have the atheist.  Many times, this atheist is someone who knows a LOT about science and the way it works.  This leads to having many fewer questions about the universe because they have studied the answers that scientists have been able to provide and find their arguments convincing.   

Nearer to the middle of the line is where a lot of people sit.  They have lots of questions but they also have lots of answers.  As time passes and more people have access to higher learning and with the internet going full swing, I think there will be a continued trend away from religion. 

Now, for me, there was a time when I wasn't too interested in any of this stuff. I didn't care about religion at all, and science was cool but not a big draw for my free time.  During that time, for all intents and purposes, I sat the middle of the line.  But once I studied the religious question more, and realized that Christianity was just a big lie, then it was like the flood gates opened up and I wanted to know as much as I possibly could about the universe.  I started to swing toward the left of the line. 

At some point in that process, I realized that religion was a convenient answer people gave when they couldn't accept the term "I don't know".  It suddenly occured to me that all the questions I didn't have the answers to, were just questions that science had not fully been able to work out yet.  That everything really should be considered natural until evidence presents itself to think otherwise about anything.  Could the universe have been created naturally? Yep.  Could we really just be evolved species of animal?  Hell yep.  :)  So here I sit on the far left of that line. 

I have no problem with the idea of a higher power.  I do not believe it's true, but I hold out for more evidence before making final judgement.  It's fine for me because usually people who believe like that aren't going to tell me I need to believe it, or tell my kids to believe it, or try to make government policy around it, etc.       
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:37:52 AM


Atheists don't know how it got started with the exception of the big bang. 



Do you agree that Big Bang gave it a beginning? And does Big Bang only apply to our universe?

Quote
But prior to that, we just don;t know.  No one does.  Except, of course, the theists!  Instead of being honest, they use their "feelings" to decide that there must be a god, or a higher power at the helm.  It just feels right...but it explains nothing.  See the difference?

Because a being or beings is the logical solution.

And we obviously have no idea what such a being or beings would be like. Perhaps they are part of the "physics" that operates pre Big Bang or perhaps in some master type universe.

What I feel very sure of is the solution is not available from whatever can be gathered in our universe.

Search around on Pre Big Bang.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 12:38:43 AM
And thanks for avoiding the tough question about your philosophy, I'll post it again...

"And speaking of logic, I see you are a programmer.  What came first and why...Windows 7 or Dos 6.0? Do you think it first took the complexity of Windows 7 to create Dos 6.0? You do see where I'm going with this higher power philosophy right?"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 12:40:43 AM
Because a being or beings is the logical solution.

So the bigger the explosion and release of energy, the more complex a being has to be to have started it.  Got it!  Errr wait, that doesn't make any sense.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:43:18 AM
So is the earth only 6000 yrs old? Adam and eve real? Genesis? the flood? or are they just metaphors,and is your "belief in a higher power" where you said you had proof just a cop out?

As I told you a giant Raven found the first people hiding in a clamshell 12,000 years ago so I know YOU are WRONG
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:44:23 AM
The Raven discovered my people on a Naikoon beach hiding inside a clamshell about 12,000 years ago. The "story" has been passed down since the "dawn of time". That is how I know you are worshipping a false diety
[/quote]

So you can't give me the evidence.

That's Ok because even Hawking and Co can't ;D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:46:01 AM
But thanks for taking the ignorant stance that we will never know more tomorrow than we do today. Nice.  This was proven wrong not only yesterday, but again today.  How many more days do you want to stick with that type of mindset?

Search on Pre Big Bang.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:46:44 AM
I told you I know you are wrong because my "story" came about 8000 years before your "story" again when have I said ANYTHING about science or the big bang?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 12:48:12 AM
So because you dont know that answers,you stop seeking knowledge?

No, I am continually looking and that is probably why I swing around a lot.

I have no desired outcome as it has already been decided.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 12:48:24 AM
Dinosaurs, since you're a higher power diest type, and you avoid tough questions trying to get you to explain your postition better, I'll ask you this instead.

What type of evidence or knowledge is there that would change your mind about the "higher power" philosophy?  What specifically would you like solidified in science or anything that would change your perspective about it?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 12:51:05 AM
So because you dont know that answers,you stop seeking knowledge?

No, I am continually looking and that is probably why I swing around a lot.

I have no desired outcome as it has already been decided.
If it has been decided why are you here ? to save us? fat chance....your version of god has all but made my people extinct
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 01:03:38 AM

I see the "higher power" belief as stemming from a lack of available knowledge.  I've thought about this one a lot lately so bear with me..


I think that is partly correct. But no one has the knowledge but your feelings or the way you see things will determine which side of the table sit.

Quote

On one side, say... the far right side... you have the hard core believer.  Usually this believer has at best a rudamentary knowledge about science and the way it works.  When this is the case, it is easy to believe in a "higher power" because there are so many unanswered questions.   



But his belief is fueled by his experiences.

Quote

On the other side, say... the far left side... you have the atheist.  Many times, this atheist is someone who knows a LOT about science and the way it works.  This leads to having many fewer questions about the universe because they have studied the answers that scientists have been able to provide and find their arguments convincing.   


Well you got the political part right ;D

By the way, which scientific work on pre  Big Bang do you follow. What was convincing about it.

Quote

Nearer to the middle of the line is where a lot of people sit.  They have lots of questions but they also have lots of answers.  As time passes and more people have access to higher learning and with the internet going full swing, I think there will be a continued trend away from religion. 


This is the big percentage of the population.

The drift away from formal religion was well under way when i was at high school, early 1960s

But I think the drift away from "there must be something there" is very small.

Quote


I have no problem with the idea of a higher power.  I do not believe it's true, but I hold out for more evidence before making final judgement.  It's fine for me because usually people who believe like that aren't going to tell me I need to believe it, or tell my kids to believe it, or try to make government policy around it, etc.       

If you have no bias or do not work on a “statement of position” it is very hard to eliminate a “higher power” from the equation.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 01:15:59 AM

I hope you understand that using the term "higer power" is synomous with "magic". And when I hear people say that I hear "the universe started by magic".  And we simply don't beleive in magic nor is there any evidence supporting this magic theory.

There is and are natual processes that we know and many that we still don't.  But that's just it, it's not magic, it's known and still to be determined processes at play. No magic.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 01:28:29 AM
And thanks for avoiding the tough question about your philosophy, I'll post it again...

"And speaking of logic, I see you are a programmer.  What came first and why...Windows 7 or Dos 6.0? Do you think it first took the complexity of Windows 7 to create Dos 6.0? You do see where I'm going with this higher power philosophy right?"

I think so.

If you mean.......Let's assume Big Bang is correct then the "higher power", if it exists, is a product from pre Big Bang or in other words, it was not the starter the motor but just something further down the chain..
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 01:37:39 AM
Dinosaurs, since you're a higher power diest type, and you avoid tough questions trying to get you to explain your postition better, I'll ask you this instead.


I simply don't have a locked in position. I think you are used to the "born agains"

Quote
What type of evidence or knowledge is there that would change your mind about the "higher power" philosophy?  What specifically would you like solidified in science or anything that would change your perspective about it?

I am not really sure. I suppose it would depend on how my own experiences were shaping up. For example. let's say my own experiences started to change in such a way that I lost the feeling that something else was involved, that alone would probably be enough for me to jump to your side of the table.

As a side note, I said at the moment I am putting more store in the Bible and have done that at times in the past, however, I don't see the God in the Bible as the "big power". Branch manager if you like. The only reason I mention that is if the Bible and God are shown to be 100% false my view on the higher power would not change.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 01:39:59 AM

If it has been decided why are you here ? to save us? fat chance....your version of god has all but made my people extinct

What I mean is the start of the universe or universes is all done. Whether it be by a higher power or did it itself or whatever, it has been done. There is nothing we can to do to change the method by which the whole show got going.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 13, 2011, 02:04:34 AM
Dinosaurs, since you're a higher power diest type, and you avoid tough questions trying to get you to explain your postition better, I'll ask you this instead.


I simply don't have a locked in position. I think you are used to the "born agains"

Quote
What type of evidence or knowledge is there that would change your mind about the "higher power" philosophy?  What specifically would you like solidified in science or anything that would change your perspective about it?

I am not really sure. I suppose it would depend on how my own experiences were shaping up. For example. let's say my own experiences started to change in such a way that I lost the feeling that something else was involved, that alone would probably be enough for me to jump to your side of the table.

As a side note, I said at the moment I am putting more store in the Bible and have done that at times in the past, however, I don't see the God in the Bible as the "big power". Branch manager if you like. The only reason I mention that is if the Bible and God are shown to be 100% false my view on the higher power would not change.

this begs the question - can you imagine anything that would change your mind? I can. There are criteria that have to be met for me to believe. What criteria - except for a vague hunch - were met for you?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 02:33:15 AM

I hope you understand that using the term "higer power" is synomous with "magic". And when I hear people say that I hear "the universe started by magic".  And we simply don't beleive in magic nor is there any evidence supporting this magic theory.

There is and are natual processes that we know and many that we still don't.  But that's just it, it's not magic, it's known and still to be determined processes at play. No magic.

Well I guess anything that happens that does not obey our natural laws is magic. Correct?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 13, 2011, 02:43:07 AM

this begs the question - can you imagine anything that would change your mind? I can. There are criteria that have to be met for me to believe. What criteria - except for a vague hunch - were met for you?

As I have already said, if my experiences were to change. For example, perhaps I have had years of coincidences etc and my new life experiences change and in the process expose the past as coincidences.

As to the science required, hard for me to say as I am not a theoretical physicist. Let me give you an example of what I mean. Let's say we have a rifle and one person says the muzzle velocity is 1500 f/s and another says it is 3000 f/s. The bullet is a typical lead core with guilding metal jacket. Without a chronograph what is an easy way to tell which velocity is correct? Some one who knows about shooting steel plate will have the answer with one shot, very easy. In fact he can probably pick 2300 f/s from 2600 f/s, not even open to doubt. However, if you ask someone who is not familiar and thus lacks the knowledge then they can't state that is a test that will prove the muzzle velocity is either 1500 f/s or 3000 f/s

But maybe the science answer for me is the same for you where you can then stae 100% there is no god or gods or God
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 13, 2011, 03:43:34 AM
Well I guess anything that happens that does not obey our natural laws is magic. Correct?

Too bad it never happens.  Oh, I know, you like to elevate your willful ignorance to "magic."

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 08:47:20 AM
Well I guess anything that happens that does not obey our natural laws is magic. Correct?

Too bad it never happens.  Oh, I know, you like to elevate your willful ignorance to "magic."

--J.D.
What about the Big Bang? We've already discussed how that does break many laws. Magic!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: DVZ3 on January 13, 2011, 09:56:27 AM
There is and are natual processes that we know and many that we still don't.  But that's just it, it's not magic, it's known and still to be determined processes at play. No magic.

Well I guess anything that happens that does not obey our natural laws is magic. Correct?

This is absolutely not correct and a very naive conclusion to make.  There are many people right now that have spent their entire lives and academic careers studying exactly how and why things work today that we didn’t know yesterday and that comment is a slap in the face to them and human understanding.

Everything, at least in our observable universe seems to obey natural laws all around us.  But there are many that we don't completely understand.... yet. Like how exactly life formed, what happened pre-big bang, what exactly is going on inside a super massive black hole. We are still using our scientific methods to get a better understanding.  Again, no magic, but consistent processes of nature we mere humans are just starting to see the large iceberg of universe underneath the water sort of speak.

I mean honestly, have you ever seen a well executed magic trick?  It really does seem like magic in front of your eyes that the physical laws of physics are being broken.  However, when you find out how the trick is done its no longer magical anymore but a mere illusion that obeys our natural laws.

Our universe is big, bigger than we can comprehend at times.  And it’s filled with phenomenon that just seem like magic to the untrained eye.  But the more you learn about math, physics, chemistry and cosmology, the more we find out about how the tricks are done.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 13, 2011, 10:36:40 AM
I hate to be like what every other Christian you probably see on this site is like. I hate to leave because I could argue all day against your points. But that's irrelevant since it's pretty apparent everyone on this site is already very determined in their beliefs and it's obvious that many (not all) just have a blatant hate for religion/God in every way. Claiming that Muhammad, Jesus, and Siddhartha are all made up is just ridiculous.
but you have no evidence that they do so wahahhhh.  and ah the usual claims that atheists are close minded.  Sorry, I just don't have to accept any myth as true with no thought. You would have me do that just for yours.  Sad.
Quote
Even if all these people were real that wouldn't make any of their religions true, but people feel the need to try and disprove their very existence because of their strong ill-will toward religion.
No, no ill will, just wanting to see evidence, not pious prating by people who think they know things and demonstrably don't. 
Quote
This clearly marks someone who has lost all open-mindedness and true research and resorted to accepting and investigating anything that could even possibly show religion isn't true. It's not searching for the truth, it's just finding ways to claim God isn't the truth.
unless you are psychic and have evidence, you are bearing false witness and are indeed a liar. Open-mindedness is not accepting anythign on someone's say so.  It is looking for evidence. The problem you have is that when you claim evidence and someone asks you for it, you are cornered since you don't have it.  And then this starts.

Quote
There are people on this site whom I feel would have a reasonable conversation/debate and be open-minded.
then challenge one of these people to a one-on-one debate. But I *know* you won't.
Quote
But far too many post comments that aren't even worth responding to and that attack parts of Christianity they know nothing about. I understand not believing in God, but attacking a religion you don't actually understand is just sad. At least search for the truth and not additional ways to insult people.
  sorry dude but I *was* a Christian and I have read the bible several times, both as believer and as not. It is not an insult to ask for evidence. Sorry you think so but that claim is weak.

Quote
I know that some users are going to make fun of me and claim they hurt my feelings, but you didn't. Go ahead and make fun I really don't care. I enjoy debating and seeing other people's beliefs but when people aren't even willing to be reasonable it's just frustrating. And I would stay on despite the frustration but unfortunately I don't have enough time. Maybe I'll comment on posts occasionally but I just didn't realize the time committment holding up this post would require. I'm sorry to bail on you guys (and girls) but my time here is over  :'( Happy camping!
Nope, no fun making from me at least. I am going to call you what you have demonstrated yourself to be.  Being reasonable isn't accepting what you say without question.  Sorry, fail on that definition.  When you only want a soapbox, to preach and to validate yourself and your myths, you'll never get it here. 

you know for someone who was going to leave, I see that you are responding like dino would to his thread. Curious that....

I do love how once the hard questions start coming so many Christians become cowards and run away.  They always have some great excuses on why.  You've hit most of them and they are as usual, baseless claims, outright lies and whines.  Golly, one more Christian who suddenly has no time!  How not suprising.   &)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 10:42:22 AM
Dino ....answer the question posted ealier is the universe 6000 yrs old created by a higher power or is it billions of years old ,,,,where science is only begining to trace its beginings as technology allows it? I dont have the big bang answers (I have only what I have read about it) our science knowledge has expanded much in the last decades and we are trying to look back billions of years

 Your default stand Goddidit is LAME
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 13, 2011, 11:02:05 AM
But far too many post comments that aren't even worth responding to and that attack parts of Christianity they know nothing about.

Speaking of not knowing anything about Christianity. I never got a response on my questions regarding salvation.


What about the parts of the bible where it states that god simply chooses who goes to hell and who goes to heaven. That he, in fact, chose whether that would happen before you were born, irregardless of anything you might do? What about the parts that say that god deliberately condemns people to hell? Or how he causes some people to disbelieve in him in order to condemn them? You really have never read that book, have you?

I'm assuming that you claim to know about Christianity. So this should be an easy answer for you.

As a corollary to the questions above, out of the 100+ ways to salvation listed in the bible, which/how many of those methods are true? If they are all true, then how am I supposed to hate the world and everything in it (John 2:!5) and subsequently be a friend to it (James 4:4)? How am I supposed to fear god, yet not be fearful of anything? And why am I going to hell for being circumsized? I certainly didn't get any say in the matter on whether or not someone chopped off a piece of my genetalia as a baby. If I pray to god hard enough, will he glue the missing pieces back on to me so that I can get into heaven?

I want to be saved, so how do I do it?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: changeling on January 13, 2011, 01:38:24 PM
So in other words, JT812, if we aren't just awestruck with all of your rhetoric
you are going to take your basketball and go home.

How pathetic.

Bye now!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 13, 2011, 05:52:14 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.
Let's assume that I follow all the moral commandments required by god except believing in him, am I going to heaven or hell?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 05:55:55 PM
I have time for a short post  ;D
I'm sorry about the comments about people being close minded, hating god, etc, etc. I didn't mean everyone, I just meant some.

As a corollary to the questions above, out of the 100+ ways to salvation listed in the bible, which/how many of those methods are true? If they are all true, then how am I supposed to hate the world and everything in it (John 2:!5) and subsequently be a friend to it (James 4:4)? How am I supposed to fear god, yet not be fearful of anything? And why am I going to hell for being circumsized? I certainly didn't get any say in the matter on whether or not someone chopped off a piece of my genetalia as a baby. If I pray to god hard enough, will he glue the missing pieces back on to me so that I can get into heaven?

I want to be saved, so how do I do it?
Here's what you need to understand about the Bible. It speaks in absolute statements. What I mean by that is it takes everything to one extreme and presents that idea. For example, in Proverbs 26:4 it says, "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself." But then immediately after that in verse 5 it says, "Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes." At first, this may seem extremely contradicting, but obviously the author meant to write them both since they're right after each other. They are both true, but written as absolute statements. An English example is "Many hands make light work" and "Too many cooks spoil the broth". Both are true sometimes but each are written as absolute statements. So the Bible works in the same way. And the Bible doesn't say you're going to hell for being circumcised.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 05:58:23 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.
Let's assume that I follow all the moral commandments required by god except believing in him, am I going to heaven or hell?
Hell. Because actions can't save you. That's the whole reason Jesus came. We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Nam on January 13, 2011, 06:06:57 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.

How can a person have a problem with something that they do not believe exists?

-Nam
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 13, 2011, 06:26:56 PM
And the Bible doesn't say you're going to hell for being circumcised.

"Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing ... ye are fallen from grace." Galatian 5:2-4

I'm sure you have some alternate interpretation of this then? Since you have the superior biblical knowledge I'm sure you already knew about this and were just joking when you said it wasn't in there.

Here's what you need to understand about the Bible. It speaks in absolute statements. What I mean by that is it takes everything to one extreme and presents that idea. For example, in Proverbs 26:4 it says, "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself." But then immediately after that in verse 5 it says, "Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes." At first, this may seem extremely contradicting, but obviously the author meant to write them both since they're right after each other. They are both true, but written as absolute statements. An English example is "Many hands make light work" and "Too many cooks spoil the broth". Both are true sometimes but each are written as absolute statements. So the Bible works in the same way.

So the bible isn't contradictory. It just says one thing and then says the exact opposite..........I think you might need a dictionary if we're going to continue this.

Leaving that aside however, there are four problems with this.

1)I wasn't quoting the same authors regarding salvation. I was quoting different verses from different books. So the author did not mean to write them both, one author gave one instruction, and then a second or third author gave a completely different instruction later.

2) You are not applying this to the criteria that was set out. My comment was about the exact instructions given on how to achieve salvation. "Too many cooks spoil the broth" is a folk proverb. Not an instruction from god. The instructions cannot both be true. You cannot hate the world and everything in it, yet love it. You cannot be fearful and yet without fear. None of this addresses the questions.

3)By your own admittance then, the bible is a useless book. If we're supposed to follow a large set of contradictory (and yes, that is the right word; look at your dictionary), then it simply becomes a matter of us making our own decisions about right and wrong anyways. After all, how are you to decide when you should hate the world, and when you should love it? Since you are required to do both and there are no instructions given on when to do which. Ultimately then it boils down to doing whichever one you want, whenever you want to do it. Which is no different from if you just ignored everything the book had to say.

4)You did not address anything that was said. I asked you which of these 100+ methods of salvation you are supposed to follow. Then cited specific means of salvation as examples, all of which you ignored. Instead you trotted out a bunch of old proverbs that have no bearing on the discussion. You didn't even address the initial post I quoted in the post before either. We are not discussing proverbs and folk sayings. We are discussing specific instructions regarding salvation and how they are to be followed.

You cannot have two absolute statements that are true and contradict each other. In fact you were asked how to resolve this conundrum, something else which you didn't do. You are dodging the issue, and not very well might I add. This doesn't address on anything said so far in the two posts.

Edit:As an addition, I should also point out that most of the methods for salvation are not contingent on simple faith and are matters which require you to perform certain actions. Since you claim that works aren't important, I'm guessing that this is why you ignored every detail of the issues that I raised.

Tell you what, let's play a game. You show a part of the bible that says that your position in the afterlife is determined on nothing more than faith. And for your one, I'll show you three that are based one either works or gods whim. Then we'll see who runs out first. (Hint:It won't be me.)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Grogan on January 13, 2011, 07:04:48 PM
Hell. Because actions can't save you. That's the whole reason Jesus came. We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.

I'm sorry if this was covered, but am I to understand that you believe that original sin and by proxy Adam and Eve are historical figures that actually existed as accounted for in Genesis?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 13, 2011, 07:15:23 PM
I have time for a short post  ;D
I'm sorry about the comments about people being close minded, hating god, etc, etc. I didn't mean everyone, I just meant some.

As a corollary to the questions above, out of the 100+ ways to salvation listed in the bible, which/how many of those methods are true? If they are all true, then how am I supposed to hate the world and everything in it (John 2:!5) and subsequently be a friend to it (James 4:4)? How am I supposed to fear god, yet not be fearful of anything? And why am I going to hell for being circumsized? I certainly didn't get any say in the matter on whether or not someone chopped off a piece of my genetalia as a baby. If I pray to god hard enough, will he glue the missing pieces back on to me so that I can get into heaven?

I want to be saved, so how do I do it?
Here's what you need to understand about the Bible. It speaks in absolute statements. What I mean by that is it takes everything to one extreme and presents that idea. For example, in Proverbs 26:4 it says, "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest you be like him yourself." But then immediately after that in verse 5 it says, "Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes." At first, this may seem extremely contradicting, but obviously the author meant to write them both since they're right after each other. They are both true, but written as absolute statements. An English example is "Many hands make light work" and "Too many cooks spoil the broth". Both are true sometimes but each are written as absolute statements. So the Bible works in the same way. And the Bible doesn't say you're going to hell for being circumcised.

Oh dear another Christian who doesn't know when and how the bible was written, and by whom. It is like giving a translation of "Moby Dick" to a hitherto isolated band of aboriginals, land-locked in the middle of Australia and asking them to come up with what it is about.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 13, 2011, 07:29:48 PM
What about the Big Bang? We've already discussed how that does break many laws. Magic!

Save it does not.

Now run along and do your homework.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 07:46:33 PM
I am a confessing believer in and follower of Jesus Christ and I believe the Bible is the inspired Word of God. I would really like to know what's your biggest questions/concerns/problems etc. with God, specifically the God of the Bible. I may not be able to answer everything you say or ask, but I would love to do what I can.
Let's assume that I follow all the moral commandments required by god except believing in him, am I going to heaven or hell?
Hell. Because actions can't save you. That's the whole reason Jesus came. We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.
If Jesus was real he would have only reached a handful of Jews AT MOST........Absolutly the lamest answer from a christian yet
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 07:49:24 PM
Hell. Because actions can't save you. That's the whole reason Jesus came. We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.

JT812,

This reply is, for all intents and purposes, a lot of personal preaching, which is against our forum rules.  Please consider adding evidential support for your replies.  Personal opinions are fine, as long as they are stated as such.

Thanks!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 13, 2011, 08:38:12 PM
^ http://www.seekthetruth.org/bb.html (http://www.seekthetruth.org/bb.html)
Here you go.  The entire theory refuted in about 50 sentences. ;)  Read if you want to drop a few IQ points.


WOOOOOOOOWWWWWWWWW.

First I was all   :) and then went   :? :laugh:    :-\ &)    :o  :(  :'(

That was... Special. Thanks.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Locke on January 13, 2011, 08:40:11 PM
Why does god hate figs?

Also, why hasn't your god eliminated cancer and other diseases? For my 16th birthday in February, I got something starting with a ca-- but it wasn't the Kia Forte I wanted, but cancer.

For my 16th birthday, I was in a hospital getting chemotherapy.  My mom had cancer when I was in 7th grade. My uncle just got diagnosed with cancer (very likely to be deadly). Their family is very religious, and yet their prayer did nothing.

How do you reconcile this with god creating man in his image? Did god die of leukemia billions of years ago? It would fit with your view of how the universe began.

Any chance I can get an answer yet?

Also, please skip past the default "This guy 6000 years ago ate an apple" or "They're not praying hard enough" stuff.  Thanks.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 08:47:14 PM
Quote: Alzael
Quote
"Behold, I Paul say unto you, that if ye be circumcised, Christ shall profit you nothing ... ye are fallen from grace." Galatian 5:2-4
I can't believe I even have to answer this. The verse clearly states that circumcision won't help you because you are fallen from grace. Not that you are fallen from grace because you are circumcised. So no alternate interpretation needed. Just reading the verse.  ;)
Quote: Alzael
Quote
I wasn't quoting the same authors regarding salvation. I was quoting different verses from different books. So the author did not mean to write them both, one author gave one instruction, and then a second or third author gave a completely different instruction later.
As a Christian I believe the author is the same in every case, God. But that doesn't matter.
Quote: Alzael
Quote
You are not applying this to the criteria that was set out. My comment was about the exact instructions given on how to achieve salvation. "Too many cooks spoil the broth" is a folk proverb. Not an instruction from god. The instructions cannot both be true. You cannot hate the world and everything in it, yet love it. You cannot be fearful and yet without fear. None of this addresses the questions.
I'm guessing you're referring to Luke 14:26 which says, "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple." The word "hate" is a Semitic expression for loving less (Genesis 29:30-31; Deuteronomy 21:15-17; Matthew 10:37) This command means we must love God above all things, he must be #1 in our lives and we should "hate" everything in comparison. However we are still called to love those in the world.
Quote: Alzael
Quote
By your own admittance then, the bible is a useless book. If we're supposed to follow a large set of contradictory (and yes, that is the right word; look at your dictionary)
I just explained why it's not contradictory. It would be appreciated if you didn't use arguments that have already been refuted, are clearly not true, and irrelevant. Thanks!
Quote: Alzael
Quote
You did not address anything that was said. I asked you which of these 100+ methods of salvation you are supposed to follow. Then cited specific means of salvation as examples, all of which you ignored. Instead you trotted out a bunch of old proverbs that have no bearing on the discussion. You didn't even address the initial post I quoted in the post before either. We are not discussing proverbs and folk sayings. We are discussing specific instructions regarding salvation and how they are to be followed.
I've already discussed this, but once again we are saved only by grace. However, works are ALWAYS the result of salvation. That is why Paul can say we are justified by faith alone and not by works in Ephesians, and James can say that faith without works is dead. "We are justified by faith alone, but justifying faith is never alone; it is always coupled with works." -Brad Cooper We don't attain salvation by what we do, it is a gift that is given to us by God. But real salvation will always result in works because it is a committment to following Jesus. And if you're not doing anything then you're not following anybody, so you're not really saved. So grace and works don't contradict each other.
Quote: Alzael
Quote
You cannot have two absolute statements that are true and contradict each other. In fact you were asked how to resolve this conundrum, something else which you didn't do. You are dodging the issue, and not very well might I add. This doesn't address on anything said so far in the two posts.
That's what my entire post earlier was about. How seeming contradictions aren't contradictions at all. Maybe you should go back and read it again.  :D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 08:49:28 PM
Why does god hate figs?

Also, why hasn't your god eliminated cancer and other diseases? For my 16th birthday in February, I got something starting with a ca-- but it wasn't the Kia Forte I wanted, but cancer.

For my 16th birthday, I was in a hospital getting chemotherapy.  My mom had cancer when I was in 7th grade. My uncle just got diagnosed with cancer (very likely to be deadly). Their family is very religious, and yet their prayer did nothing.

How do you reconcile this with god creating man in his image? Did god die of leukemia billions of years ago? It would fit with your view of how the universe began.

Any chance I can get an answer yet?

Also, please skip past the default "This guy 6000 years ago ate an apple" or "They're not praying hard enough" stuff.  Thanks.
Sorry to hear that. I think (correct me if I'm wrong) your question is basically, "why is there bad in the world?" And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world. Since bad is just the absence of good (as dark is the absence of light), then bad will exist in the world just as surely as dark existing in the world.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 08:50:15 PM
Goddidit is the lamest answer I revoke my last lame answer statment
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 08:52:25 PM

Sorry to hear that. I think (correct me if I'm wrong) your question is basically, "why is there bad in the world?" And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world. Since bad is just the absence of good (as dark is the absence of light), then bad will exist in the world just as surely as dark existing in the world.

JT812, This is going to be your last example of basically preaching, right?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 08:55:15 PM
JT show me with proof that sin leads to death

 You cant give me the murder excuse because god told his followers to murder on a regular basis,,,he just failed to call it murder and called it justified killing. However he did not want you to kill the young virgin females,,,,just fuck em and marry em,or better yet fuck em and make them SLAVES

Or are you saying because the god loving christian sins a child in Africa or Asia starves to death?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 09:12:17 PM

Sorry to hear that. I think (correct me if I'm wrong) your question is basically, "why is there bad in the world?" And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world. Since bad is just the absence of good (as dark is the absence of light), then bad will exist in the world just as surely as dark existing in the world.

JT812, This is going to be your last example of basically preaching, right?
I'm sorry, I'm not trying to preach though, I'm answering a question that's being asked. What makes it any different from stating your views as fact as me stating mine as fact? I'm not trying to be rude, I just don't understand.
JT show me with proof that sin leads to death

 You cant give me the murder excuse because god told his followers to murder on a regular basis,,,he just failed to call it murder and called it justified killing. However he did not want you to kill the young virgin females,,,,just fuck em and marry em,or better yet fuck em and make them SLAVES

Or are you saying because the god loving christian sins a child in Africa or Asia starves to death?
I can't show you with proof, you asked why God did something and I told you what the Bible says about it. If you give me a question on why God does something, then you must give me the assumption that God really exists & therefore the option to discuss the nature of God. I'm sorry there is bad in the world. I personally don't believe God predestines all our actions and therefore I don't believe that God is responsible for all the bad in the world.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 09:15:47 PM
Well how about your opinion? how does sin equal death? my first example or my second? You made the statement sin= death
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 13, 2011, 09:23:36 PM
Here is a question:

How come there is neither logical nor physical evidence for the reality of the xian god?

Would a simple and clear demonstration of the existence of the divine be incredibly useful, and an act of the greatest benignity? Maybe with a few refreshers thrown in every generation or so to make sure everyone is covered. It would be great to have it all sorted out, and I promise you I will happily convert and paint "fancy that!" on my forehead. Think of the millions of people who keep stubbornly insisting on some proper reasonable evidence of the existence of the divine - they could all be saved! Surely that would be a good thing?

How come there are millions of Amerindians that lived after the birth of Christ and before columbus, but who nevertheless had never heard of Christianity? Do they go to hell or not? Did god not like them as much? Surely they must have sinned, but they could not be redeemed by Jesus as they had never heard of the man.

What about the millions of people who grow up in a region where they teach them Islam in stead of Christianity?

How is Christianity in any way more reasonable to believe than belief in Zeus or Odinn?

How come the majority of the Christian concepts and stories are just like other mystical stories that were going around at the time, like the Mithras service or the Isis worship?

How come the Bible has so many instances of slavery in it, and yet Christians do not seem to approve of slavery? Clearly the bible has nothing against it.

How come that I, a relatively blameless man, must go to hell for all eternity just because I happen to feel that a big decision, like deciding that there is an intelligence out there in charge of the whole universe, needs a pretty good reason to believe it?

How come you approve of the fact that I must be tortured for all eternity? I have never done anything to you, and I for one would never condone you being set on fire, be it for a short amount of time or a long one.

I will have some more later, but these should tide you over for a bit.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 13, 2011, 09:24:34 PM

JT812, This is going to be your last example of basically preaching, right?
I'm sorry, I'm not trying to preach though, I'm answering a question that's being asked. What makes it any different from stating your views as fact as me stating mine as fact? I'm not trying to be rude, I just don't understand.


Make your best attempt at providing evidence for what you claim.  I know that you have opinions about what scripture means, but you should show how you arrived at that conclusion, and even state clearly that this is your interpretation.

Also, if you have a concern about a specific reply, you can use the Report to Moderator button.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 13, 2011, 09:35:38 PM
I can't believe I even have to answer this. The verse clearly states that circumcision won't help you because you are fallen from grace. Not that you are fallen from grace because you are circumcised. So no alternate interpretation needed.

My apologies, this is my fault. I had simply assumed that you would be smart enough to read the intervening lines between the two fragments. Go back and actually read it please. You were the one claiming knowledge of the bible so you should know this. Then redo the comment. It does not say that it won't help you because you are fallen from grace. You are fallen from grace without being circumsized.

 
As a Christian I believe the author is the same in every case, God. But that doesn't matter.

Then god is a very bad writer.


 
I'm guessing you're referring to Luke 14:26 which says, "If anyone comes to me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be my disciple." The word "hate" is a Semitic expression for loving less (Genesis 29:30-31; Deuteronomy 21:15-17; Matthew 10:37) This command means we must love God above all things, he must be #1 in our lives and we should "hate" everything in comparison. However we are still called to love those in the world.

No, I was actually thinking of "Love not the world, neither the things that are in the world. If any man love the world, the love of the Father is not in him" John 2:15. However as for what you quoted. Your justification for this is pathetically weak.

First off, the word that is used in the bible is "miseo" or sometimes "misos". This is a word which means "to hate, pursue with hatred, and detest, or to be hated or detested". Apologists try to claim that "to love less" is also a way to interpret the word. However this isn't supported by anything that I know of. The word itself is used in our language to indicate hatred as well (misogyny, misanthropy, etc.). Bottom line, there is no source at all (outside of biblical apologists), to my knowledge that translates "misos" as "to love less". Even most christian sources don't do that, such as BibleStudyTools. Unless you can actually support this, it doesn't help your case.

Secondly, even if that was a valid interpretation it's still only one possible definition of the word. You can't show where he doesn't mean hate in the sense of detest and loathing. So at best the point shows nothing (assuming your initial point about the translation was valid, which it so far isn't). The same applies to your other examples as well, but I wasn't citing any of them anyways.


 
I just explained why it's not contradictory. It would be appreciated if you didn't use arguments that have already been refuted, are clearly not true, and irrelevant. Thanks!

No, you didn't. You ignored what the word contradictory means and then tried to dodge around the issue by calling both statements true and absolute. Like I said, invest in a dictionray. Or at least think before you type.

 
I've already discussed this, but once again we are saved only by grace.

Or simply because god said so. Which I notice you still fail to address.

 
That's what my entire post earlier was about. How seeming contradictions aren't contradictions at all. Maybe you should go back and read it again.

No, they're still contradictions. you're just ripping them apart, stitching them back together like frankenstein. Then hammering them with a mallet until they're in a shape that'll fit into your brain. Case in point"

"We are justified by faith alone, but justifying faith is never alone; it is always coupled with works." -Brad Cooper

If that actually isn't really stupid to you, then there's not much hope for your mental development.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 13, 2011, 09:35:54 PM
So I guess by making a dramatic exit then returning, you start off with a clean slate and no longer have to worry about all the previous questions?  Because I'm still wondering how christianity is different from any other primitive cultural mythology.

I think it's pretty obvious the whole "no would die for what they knew was a lie" argument is thoroughly debunked, right?  Because despite three tries, you have yet to provide any evidence as to how any apostles died or anyone who may have witnessed the resurrection would have died.  So that's done, right?

And the whole "only christianity enables you to heaven by grace alone" nonsense is out, right?

And your whole argument against te big bang seems to boil down to just "it's impossible and that's that", right?  You have no intention to refuting anyone's post to the contrary.

And I'd actually like to get an answer to my post about how the crucifixion wouldn't really have been a "sacrifice at all", how it makes no sense why it would be necessary, and how it doesn't fit at all with the great flood tale. 

You're a Christian because that was what the prevailing cultural belief around you was.  You were TOLD to believe it and you didn't question it.  Whenever you brought up "Jesus" or "god" you were met with signs of approval from those around you.  When you strayed away from it, this around you disapproved.  So you come up with increasingly cockamamie explanations of why the facts don't fit, why your religion is the "right one".  You create this perfec being in your head, that you really want to exist, and pick out the parts of the bible you were brought up on that reinforce this belief, and find rather convoluted explanations to explain away the parts that don't.

The emperor has no clothes, buddy.  It's over.  If you want to have a "rational" discussion, you have to start questioning the existence of this invisible friend.  He doesn't exist.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 13, 2011, 09:41:17 PM
^^^^ why would they put Jesus in a tomb anyways? leave him for the vultures like the others killed in the same manner
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 13, 2011, 09:52:18 PM
I'd like to hear a response to Posi-Bob, JT812. I suggest you respond to the previous people before you keep trying to go rounds with me as well. You still have a long list of others who were dodged before I chimed in and they have dibs.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 13, 2011, 11:19:38 PM

JT812, This is going to be your last example of basically preaching, right?
I'm sorry, I'm not trying to preach though, I'm answering a question that's being asked. What makes it any different from stating your views as fact as me stating mine as fact? I'm not trying to be rude, I just don't understand.


Make your best attempt at providing evidence for what you claim.  I know that you have opinions about what scripture means, but you should show how you arrived at that conclusion, and even state clearly that this is your interpretation.

Also, if you have a concern about a specific reply, you can use the Report to Moderator button.

Ok, appreciate it, I'll do my best. Let me know if I do it again.

Quote: Positivaob
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So I guess by making a dramatic exit then returning, you start off with a clean slate and no longer have to worry about all the previous questions?  Because I'm still wondering how christianity is different from any other primitive cultural mythology.
Haha exactly! Nah, just a huge snow/ice storm basically shut down my city giving me much more time than I anticipated. But I did already answer that (people didn't like it, but I answered it). That's a long post though but I'll attempt to explain it again later.

Quote: Positiveaob
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I think it's pretty obvious the whole "no would die for what they knew was a lie" argument is thoroughly debunked, right?  Because despite three tries, you have yet to provide any evidence as to how any apostles died or anyone who may have witnessed the resurrection would have died.  So that's done, right?
Because any extra-biblical evidence I give is discredited because they claim it's not real. I see where they're coming from but if writings were tampered with you would think people would notice that (maybe I'm wrong though). However, I think the biggest proof they were real is the Biblical writings that included the disciples (some which were written by the disciples) during this time. If they didn't exist then others would have contested the validity of the documents originally and they never would have become popular. The historical evidence alone would have discredited itself extremely early on if the people in it weren't real, but that didn't happen. I think it's very obvious the apostles were real and died claiming what they believed for these reasons.
Quote: Positiveaob
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And the whole "only christianity enables you to heaven by grace alone" nonsense is out, right?
Nope.
Quote: Positiveaob
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And your whole argument against te big bang seems to boil down to just "it's impossible and that's that", right?  You have no intention to refuting anyone's post to the contrary
I wish somebody would refute my post! Nobody has given anything to the contrary except, "you don't understand it" which is an obvious statement showing they must not either.
Quote: Positiveaob
Quote
And I'd actually like to get an answer to my post about how the crucifixion wouldn't really have been a "sacrifice at all", how it makes no sense why it would be necessary, and how it doesn't fit at all with the great flood tale.
You'll have to post it again, I don't remember.

Quote: Vivisectus
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How come there is neither logical nor physical evidence for the reality of the xian god?
Constantly asking Christians for demonstrable scientific evidence for God is as fair as me asking for religious evidence for the Big Bang. I can give you scientific evidence to a degree, but obviously God isn't governed by science so I can't just prove him to you with science. As for logical evidence for a God there is lots! I would love to talk about some of that if you would like to, or if that interests you read books such as Mere Christianity by CS Lewis.
Quote: Vivisectus
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Would a simple and clear demonstration of the existence of the divine be incredibly useful, and an act of the greatest benignity?
I don't always know the ways of God but perhaps this would cause people to just believe there was a God worldwide and ruin true saving faith for some people. And simply believing that God exists won't save people as James 2:14-16 says.
Quote: Vivisectus
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What about the millions of people who grow up in a region where they teach them Islam in stead of Christianity?

How is Christianity in any way more reasonable to believe than belief in Zeus or Odinn?
There's a lot of disagreement on this even among Christians. Some say that people who have never heard are not held accountable and therefore not condemned. Others insist all who are not saved will go to Hell. I'm not sure where I stand yet. Still trying to decide what the Bible says.
Quote: Vivisectus
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How come that I, a relatively blameless man, must go to hell for all eternity just because I happen to feel that a big decision, like deciding that there is an intelligence out there in charge of the whole universe, needs a pretty good reason to believe it?
What makes you a good man? Have you ever sped in a car? Hated someone? Held a grudge against someone? Slandered someone? Lusted over someone? Been prideful? Been selfish?

Quote: Alzael
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You are fallen from grace without being circumsized.
Sorry for being rude before but you are fallen from grace whether or not you are circumcised. The point of this verse (continue reading) is that circumcision vs. uncircumcision accounts for nothing.

Quote: Alzael
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First off, the word that is used in the bible is "miseo" or sometimes "misos". This is a word which means "to hate, pursue with hatred, and detest, or to be hated or detested". Apologists try to claim that "to love less" is also a way to interpret the word. However this isn't supported by anything that I know of. The word itself is used in our language to indicate hatred as well (misogyny, misanthropy, etc.). Bottom line, there is no source at all (outside of biblical apologists), to my knowledge that translates "misos" as "to love less". Even most christian sources don't do that, such as BibleStudyTools. Unless you can actually support this, it doesn't help your case.

Secondly, even if that was a valid interpretation it's still only one possible definition of the word. You can't show where he doesn't mean hate in the sense of detest and loathing. So at best the point shows nothing (assuming your initial point about the translation was valid, which it so far isn't). The same applies to your other examples as well, but I wasn't citing any of them anyways.
You have to take scripture in light of the rest of scripture. That's the reason I gave the example from Proverbs earlier. To show that two contradicting absolute statements must be combined in order to make sense of some verses. Here, the only way to make sense of hating your family while being commanded to love everyone is to translate hate as "love less". Reading the Bible is not always just straight forward, it must be taken in light of all other scripture. This is why theology exists.
Quote: Alzael
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"We are justified by faith alone, but justifying faith is never alone; it is always coupled with works." -Brad Cooper

If that actually isn't really stupid to you, then there's not much hope for your mental development.
I know it's a deep concept, but you claiming I'm dumb for understanding a concept that you can't doesn't do much for making me respect you. I felt this quote made it pretty clear what the difference was and how works and grace worked together. You could read some books on it I guess. It really does make sense. I'm sorry if you don't understand.

Quote: 12 Monkeys
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^^^^ why would they put Jesus in a tomb anyways? leave him for the vultures like the others killed in the same manner
Well if he claimed he was the Messiah (whether you believe he was or not) and did miracles (whether you believe or not) obviously someone is going to put him in a tomb.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Locke on January 14, 2011, 12:07:15 AM
Why does god hate figs?

Also, why hasn't your god eliminated cancer and other diseases? For my 16th birthday in February, I got something starting with a ca-- but it wasn't the Kia Forte I wanted, but cancer.

For my 16th birthday, I was in a hospital getting chemotherapy.  My mom had cancer when I was in 7th grade. My uncle just got diagnosed with cancer (very likely to be deadly). Their family is very religious, and yet their prayer did nothing.

How do you reconcile this with god creating man in his image? Did god die of leukemia billions of years ago? It would fit with your view of how the universe began.

Any chance I can get an answer yet?

Also, please skip past the default "This guy 6000 years ago ate an apple" or "They're not praying hard enough" stuff.  Thanks.
Sorry to hear that. I think (correct me if I'm wrong) your question is basically, "why is there bad in the world?" And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world. Since bad is just the absence of good (as dark is the absence of light), then bad will exist in the world just as surely as dark existing in the world.

Part of it was that. Another third was "why does prayer not work, even for the very religious" and a third part was "If god supposedly made us in his design, why are there so many useless parts in the body and chromosomal issues that can arise?".

 Out of curiosity, do you believe mankind is inherently good or bad?  As I'm a confirmed Catholic (for my parents), I was generally taught the concept of an all-powerful, *loving* god, and mostly believe that people at least have good intentions. 

Although I'm technically a catholic, I never believed in a god sending people to hell, which I guess made me more of a universalist.  Why do you think a god would "create" people just to send to hell? The AmerIndians question earlier is asking the same thing.

Lastly, to the mods -- even though he's ignoring a lot of posts, is posting a philosophical (not even very religious) post really against the TOS? That seems a bit strict.

-sorry for the abrupt sentences, I'm typing from an ipod.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 14, 2011, 12:26:04 AM
Doesn't really seem like "preaching" when one's being asked for one's position in the first place, eh?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 14, 2011, 01:25:04 AM
Quote: 12 Monkeys
Quote
^^^^ why would they put Jesus in a tomb anyways? leave him for the vultures like the others killed in the same manner
Well if he claimed he was the Messiah (whether you believe he was or not) and did miracles (whether you believe or not) obviously someone is going to put him in a tomb.

No Roman would, that's for sure. If Jesus actually existed, Rome didn't care if he claimed to be the Messiah. Dozens of wandering preachers were claiming to be the Messiah back then. New wannabe Messiahs were popping up every other day.

Jesus was just another political execution to them, treasonous in the eyes of Rome. Rome didn't fuck around with treason. It was pretty much the worst crime they had. They went out of their way to make examples of those who were found guilty of it.

In reality, if a preacher like Jesus was building support and creating unrest amongst the Jewish population, Rome would have reacted in kind. Which means, first and foremost: Absolutely not a chance in hell they'd let the body be buried or entombed as per Jewish custom.

What IS likely, and this is going to be hard to hear I imagine, but it's the truth... What IS likely is that the body was removed from the cross and either A.)Cremated in a mass grave with the other prisoners B.)Cut into pieces and fed to dogs or C.)Decapitated, the body burned, and the head paraded back and forth in front of the Forum.

This would have all been done within hours of the death.

They'd make absolutely sure allll the other Jews knew that if you fuck with Rome, you would not get your religious last rites. Rome knew the power of religion well. They knew what a deterrent that sort of thing was.

But okay, let's pretend that, somehow (GODDIDIT! A BUNCH!) a few Jewish peasents/apostles/whatever managed to take down Jesus' 12 foot tall crucifix, pull the nails from his hands and feet, and run off with a 180 lb body right under the noses of a quarter of a Roman Legion (crucifixion detail).

How long do you suppose the whole operation took? Ten minutes? Twenty minutes? We're talking about a lot of movement and noise here, especially pulling a 12 foot tall 300 pound crucifix out of the ground along with a 180 lb body, and you can't be fast AND stealthy.

Now somehow the legion doesn't notice at all, even though they would have had pre-mandated orders for what to do with the bodies of high-profile criminals and were likely keeping a pretty close eye on those prisoners, just waiting for them to kick off so they could wrap it up and move on to the next assignment).

So yeah, they run off with this 180 lb body (on foot, I guess, because horses aren't exactly stealthy), away from a HILL that provided exceptional view of the surrounding terrain (and still the Centurions are sitting around picking their noses I guess) and put it in a tomb.

It sounds like a freaking Loony Toon! I can just see the Jews running miles away from this hill kicking up trails of dust while their legs spin around in circles like a helicopter rotor, and the Romans just sit there all looking around for the Goodyear Blimp.

But moving on, somehow Rome finds out about this whole little goof, and posts GUARDS outside the tomb, even though A.)They'd have absolutely no reason to do so, given that they didn't believe a word of Jesus supposed magical status and B.)They knew where their runaway body had gone to.

Any particularly good reason why Rome would waste perfecltly good Centurions guarding this non-magical treasonous Jew corpse that was declared an Enemy of Rome? Instead of retrieving the body? And please don't tell me they couldn't move the boulder or whatever. It was a slave empire. They could and did move a lot more than boulders.

Just letting the Jews entomb this prisoner was a slap in the face to the Empire. No WAY they would have just shrugged and said "oh damn. There's a boulder in the way. Well, put some guards on it just in case he COMES BACK FROM THE DEAD."???

Nothing about this story makes any sense. You have to create magical occurance after magical occurance, all these seperate rationalizations and explanations that are really pretty far out there in order to buy into it.

But what happens when we assume the story is just that; a story? Allll the awkward plotholes suddenly make sense! Because it's FICTION.

Ever notice how a theist, defending the stories of their faith, sounds and awful lot like somebody trying to explain away the plotholes in a movie or book they love? Well, I certainly have. And yet, with things that really happen, you don't hear those kinds of things, do you? When it's real, the story just makes sense.

From the outside looking in, man, I'll tell you. It's embarassingly obvious to me that it's just a primitive empowerment story for ancient goat herders. If you put half an effort in, and read it like you would any other fable or myth, without all the weight of a lifetime of being told "THIS IS TRUE" behind it, you'd see it really is quite a silly story.

Especially if you know a little bit about ancient Rome.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 14, 2011, 05:24:25 AM
The point of this verse (continue reading) is that circumcision vs. uncircumcision accounts for nothing.

I did keep reading. That isn't the point of the verse. It clearly starts out by saying that everyone who is circumsized cannot be saved by grace. Then makes a shift to say otherwise. Or if you want to go beyond the one verse you can look at most of Genesis 17. Irregardless you still haven't shown that it means what you say it means, beyond this being another biblical contradiction.

You have to take scripture in light of the rest of scripture. That's the reason I gave the example from Proverbs earlier. To show that two contradicting absolute statements must be combined in order to make sense of some verses. Here, the only way to make sense of hating your family while being commanded to love everyone is to translate hate as "love less". Reading the Bible is not always just straight forward, it must be taken in light of all other scripture. This is why theology exists.

This is called a rationalization. Like I said, you're trying to take two contradictions and force them to mean something coherent. This is also what is known as the "Magic Decoder Ring". You're claiming to know the proper way to read the bible, without any actual justification for why it should be interpreted in that way. It also makes much more sense that the bible was written by a bunch of primitive humans decades or centuries apart, each with their own views and motivations.

Also, as I pointed out, it does not mean "to love less" by any known translation of the word that I'm aware of. I know of one apologist that tries to make that argument. Other than him, even most of the christian sites that I'm aware of don't tranlate it to mean that. And no greek lexicon or dictionary translates it out to mean anything else but "to hate or detest." But I'm sure that you weren't simply ignoring that point out of dishonesty. Right?

As I said, you're rationalizing. Trying to change words and meanings to justify the position you want to take. Just as you try to claim that you have to combine contradictions to make sense of the bible. If you have to combine "absolute" statements to make sense of them, then they aren't absolute (again, I suggest you use a dictionry). What they are, is two contradictions that you're trying to make coherent by changing their meaning to something else. This is also unjustified. Why is it not possible that someone, or perhaps both of them are just wrong? Especially if you have to jump through so many logic hoops just to make it not sound crazy? Why is your way of looking at it valid when everyone elses isn't?


I know it's a deep concept, but you claiming I'm dumb for understanding a concept that you can't doesn't do much for making me respect you. I felt this quote made it pretty clear what the difference was and how works and grace worked together. You could read some books on it I guess. It really does make sense. I'm sorry if you don't understand.

I understand it perfectly. It's just really stupid. It's a shallow statement made to appeal to the minds of people who are used to not actually thinking about the nature of their beliefs. It isn't profound, or deeply meaningful. It's the philosophical equivalent of popcorn. Something light and fluffy to tide someone over until a real thought comes along.

Also I notice that there are still a lot of issues that you're avoiding any response to.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 14, 2011, 05:30:45 AM
I understand it perfectly. It's just really stupid.

+1 and succinctly put.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 14, 2011, 05:54:19 AM
Let's assume that I follow all the moral commandments required by god except believing in him, am I going to heaven or hell?
Hell. Because actions can't save you. That's the whole reason Jesus came. We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.
Ha! That's the first straight answer I get to this question.

This may have been how you read it anyway, but is there a distinction between me knowing about god and me not knowing about god in the scenario? Like, would it help if I had never heard of christianity but still followed all his moral tenets?

Also, are there other prerequisites to get into heaven? Do I have to believe and also follow the rules? To which extent? Doe my motivation for believing factor in?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 14, 2011, 06:21:21 AM
 

Also, are there other prerequisites to get into heaven? Do I have to believe and also follow the rules? To which extent? Doe my motivation for believing factor in?

He's just going to refer you to the response he made to me in post #208. That's as far as he seems to go in answering any questions.

As a sidenote.

Reading the Bible is not always just straight forward, it must be taken in light of all other scripture. This is why theology exists.

Theology is not the same as interpreting a religions writing and scripture. They are actually completely separate disciplines.  What you mean to say is "That is why biblicla hermaneutics (or exegesis) exists." Not that I really expect you to understand the difference, but simply put your reading is not theological in nature. It's hermaneutical, and very badly so. You need more justification for interpretation than saying that this is the only way it makes sense.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 14, 2011, 07:47:01 AM
Eh. I was just planning to be a drive-by in this thread in any case. It was obvious it would be swamped in no time.
Good thing to know I'm going to hell no matter how many people's lives I'll save through selfless sacrifice, though. And being saved through grace alone is just classy. If appeal to consequences was an argument, why would I not join a works-based religion?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 14, 2011, 07:59:55 AM
Eh. I was just planning to be a drive-by in this thread in any case. It was obvious it would be swamped in no time.
Good thing to know I'm going to hell no matter how many people's lives I'll save through selfless sacrifice, though. And being saved through grace alone is just classy. If appeal to consequences was an argument, why would I not join a works-based religion?

Actually, going by his current logic (if you want to call it that) if you save peoples lives and do good things then you have grace. Because they're the same thing. Yet they aren't the same thing, of course. Grace and works go hand in hand, but you only need faith to get in and not works.

Also I note that this "grace and works" tact of his only cropped up after I pointed out all of the other 100+ ways to be saved. Until then he was pretty unambiguous about actions having no place in it. It's only now that he's trying to conflate the two, without actually conflating the two.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: NoLongerDuped on January 14, 2011, 08:20:28 AM
Greetings, everybody. It's been a while since I posted on this here site.  But as you can see, I've still been "lurking". I enjoy reading much of the logic I find here, and lately have started visiting more often. That being said, I was moved to respond to this post.
If this god person was so just, why is it that millions of children die before ever knowing the comfort a full belly can bring? Why is it that people who believe in this daydream aren't protected in some way from "some" of the evils of this world. I'm aware that my question doesn't make a whole lot of sense, so I'll try to elaborate.
It seems to me that believing in this thing, being as "just" as it is supposed to be, would bring "some" form of protection if the person's heart is truly pure. I've heard about the whole "free will" thing, and I don't buy it. I just get tired of the whole "I'm not perfect, just forgiven" mentality. Forgiven by "who"? And for "what"? I'm starting to get the urge to ramble, so I'll end it here, for now.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 14, 2011, 10:01:13 AM
OK. You know Apollo 11 landed on the moon. How do you know that. What real evidence do you have except what you have read or seen on TV etc.
Apollo landing on the moon and a man walking on the moon are much more plausible than an invisible, undetectable sky genie.

Also, another huge difference is the Apollo landing doesn't require or necessitate belief. It doesn't require building of houses of worship and attending that worship 2 to 3 times a week. It doesn't request tithing. It doesn't require constant devotion. It doesn't require studying a confusing, rambling book.

At the end of a debate with an A-Moon Landingist the Moon Landingist can shrug his shoulders and say "meh, whatever"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 14, 2011, 10:18:02 AM
And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world.
Sin leads to death.
Jesus died for out sins
What sin did Jesus commit?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 10:22:47 AM
Sin leads to... all the evil in the world.

I'll ask you the same thing I've asked every Christian whom I've ever heard say this: Please explain how hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes and floods are caused by sin.  (I've never received an answer to this... will you be the first?)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 14, 2011, 11:10:04 AM
Because any extra-biblical evidence I give is discredited because they claim it's not real. I see where they're coming from but if writings were tampered with you would think people would notice that (maybe I'm wrong though). However, I think the biggest proof they were real is the Biblical writings that included the disciples (some which were written by the disciples) during this time. If they didn't exist then others would have contested the validity of the documents originally and they never would have become popular. The historical evidence alone would have discredited itself extremely early on if the people in it weren't real, but that didn't happen. I think it's very obvious the apostles were real and died claiming what they believed for these reasons.
Because they aren't real.  You've been asked again and again for evidence and again and again you simply make baseless claims.  You've been shown how your claims support nothing.  First, the books in the bible cannot be demonstrated to have been by the disciples.  Nothign support this.  There were thousands of supposed "gospels" around, and they disagreed.  They became "popular" because of the political act of a ruler.  We have Paul evidently not knowing about the supposed "facts" in the Gospels. We have no evidence for any of the supposed events, and you'd certainly have thought such "truth" would have kept the location for the supposed tomb where JC was buried.  But no, we have at least three claimants for that. Do you think that if these things were real, they would forget that?

With your claims, any religon would be considered true just because people believe in it.  Are you good with that?  That the Egyptian pantheon, the Norse, the Chinese, are all as valid as your religion? 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 11:26:35 AM
JT812, point me again to where you know how the apostles died, or how anyone who would have witnessed the resurrection would have died?  Because as far as I can tell, in all 4 or 5 replies you have had to this question, you have only given evidence that xtians were once persecuted for their beliefs.  I am asking specifically for evidence of how the apostles died or for how anyone witnessing the resurrection would have died.

Please don't make some nonsensical leap of logic that "certainly the apostles would have been the top of the list and would have died the same way".  The Romans were just trying to stamp out a growing movement which, like all growing movements, would have been interpreted as a threat to their government.  This happened many many times throughout history.

That doesn't mean they looked at xtianity, quaked in their boots, and panicked "we've got to stop this now!!!". They were just trying to stop what they perceived to be a threat.  So the idea of a set of "apostles" might not have even existed back then.  They might not have found such apostles.  They migh have found them and murdered them despite such men screaming for mercy and denying the story up and down.  The apostles might have gone into hiding pretending for the rest of their lives to be someone else, living happily ever after.  The apostles might have been caught and pretended to be someone else and died anonymously.  The apostles might have died screaming for mercy and recanting their beliefs.  Or they might not have even existed in the first place.

So again, now for the fifth time, please show me some evidence for how the apostles died, or any potential eyewitnesses to the resurrection died.  Don't use the "I'm overwhelmed here" excuse, because you keep responding to my question, just with dodges and non-answers.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 11:29:42 AM
So your response to my pointing out evidence in other religions, such as in Islam, that your fate after life is determined by the grace of a god alone is just "nope"? 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 11:33:05 AM
Reposted for your convenience, JT.

Jesus had to be killed because God set up sacrifice as the means to forgiveness of sins. Therefore an ultimate sacrifice was required to forgive sins.

Why the hell would a divine, supposedly all-powerful, being require himself to sacrifice himself in order to forgive “sins”?  Do you honestly feel this makes rational sense?

And how does that jibe with the whole worldwide flood tale?  I mean, if he was doing that to wipe out all the “evil” people (and “evil” animals presumably), why not just forgive Noah and his family of such “sins” right then and there and start everyone off with a clean slate?  Or for that matter why not just come down and sacrifice himself to himself then instead?  Seems odd he would change his approach like that.

And what exactly was accomplished with this “forgiveness of sins”?  I wasnt alive 2,000 years ago, I didnt have any “sins” back then.  Does this mean that my current “sins” are forgiven but those committed by people 2300 years ago werent?  What was different in China if you died a few days before this supposed event as compared to if you were born a few days later?  Did anyone notice the difference? 

And please tell me how this was a “sacrifice” anyways.  If you believe in the whole “3 divine persons in one god” idea (which also makes no sense by the way), it wasnt his “son”, it was him.  And he was pretty much just taking a quick vacation down to earth (although inexplicably didnt do a thing for 30 years of it), got tortured a bit then when right back to heaven.  Getting nailed to a cross might be pretty painful, but it’s nothing compare to the years of intense suffering many cancer victims go through.  Certainly nothing compared to the hell on earth of “locked-in syndrome”.  Certainly nothing compared to the slow agonizing death of ALS.  If the Jesus of the tale had lived through any of those afflictions, that might be a bit more impressive.

Sorry, it makes no sense, and it didnt happen.  Time to get over that and move on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 11:48:08 AM
Quote from JT812:
Quote
I wish somebody would refute my post! Nobody has given anything to the contrary except, "you don't understand it" which is an obvious statement showing they must not either.

Way back in post #112, cyberia wrote an excellent refutation of your post.  We're all waiting for you to respond to it. 

Christianity is just cultural mythology like any other.  It started off in a time when word of mouth was pretty much the only means of spreading news and recording events.  People knew little of science and were generally uneducated to what science was known.  So as a result, someone claiming to be a son of a god could, with a little charisma and maybe a parlor trick or two, convince alot of people that he was telling the truth.  If and when he was killed, the legends would then take on a life of their own, being added to and embellished upon with each retelling of the tales. Someone would say, "well he didn't really die, he just went into the sky", then maybe "I heard that he rose up from the dead", etc etc.  Anyways over decades of retelling from village to village, it would become more and more extravagant.  And of course, it would gradually merge itself in nicely with any older legends and "prophecies".  Sometimes it would be put in writing by literate people, but the stories would differ.  It wasn't until a couple of centuries later, that a council would determine which of these writings were the ones they would consider the truth or not.  And of course they would make sure it jibed with any foretellings in the previous writings.

All this is the same process that any religion goes through.  Sometimes they overcome the initial adversity and stick, more often than not they fail.  Xtianity is one of he ones that made it.  But it's still just cultural superstitions, nothing more.  And you still have done nothing to show otherwise.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 14, 2011, 12:08:00 PM
Raymondkhessel, Jesus wasn't a threat to the Roman State. He was demanded killed by the Jewish community not the Roman Officials. So instead of making up some elaborate story you could make fun of (which I noticed is done a lot on this site; arguments I never made are set up for me so they can be mocked and destroyed), you could have simply looked up what the Bible says happened. "When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked fro the body of Jesus. The Pilate ordered it to be given to him. And Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had cut in rock."

I did keep reading. That isn't the point of the verse. It clearly starts out by saying that everyone who is circumsized cannot be saved by grace. Then makes a shift to say otherwise. Or if you want to go beyond the one verse you can look at most of Genesis 17. Irregardless you still haven't shown that it means what you say it means, beyond this being another biblical contradiction.

These are the type of things that cause me to have to put way too much time into these posts and not be able to fully answer big questions. This verse is CLEAR. If you can't understand it, I'm sorry, maybe you should start reading things that require deeper thinking. Galations 5:4-6 says "You are severed from Christ, you who would be justified by the law (circumcision meant you were part of God's covenant which led to justification before, but now it accounts for nothing); you have fallen away from grace. For through the Spirit, by faith, we ourselves eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness. For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision counts for anything, but only faith working through love.

Quote: Alzael
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I understand it perfectly. It's just really stupid. It's a shallow statement made to appeal to the minds of people who are used to not actually thinking about the nature of their beliefs. It isn't profound, or deeply meaningful. It's the philosophical equivalent of popcorn. Something light and fluffy to tide someone over until a real thought comes along.
If you understand it then why do you keep claiming it's impossible? I've told you how they work together and you still keep asking how they work together. I know (not being sarcastic) it is a deep idea, I would probably have to write something very lengthy to really give it justice, but it's obvious you don't understand it, whether you say you do or not, because you keep making a big deal about it. I'll try to explain it further if you want though. It would help me if you told me the part that doesn't make sense to you though so I can address that specifically.

Quote: Alzael
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Actually, going by his current logic (if you want to call it that) if you save peoples lives and do good things then you have grace.
Not true, obviously you have misunderstood what I'm saying.  :-\
If this god person was so just, why is it that millions of children die before ever knowing the comfort a full belly can bring? Why is it that people who believe in this daydream aren't protected in some way from "some" of the evils of this world. I'm aware that my question doesn't make a whole lot of sense, so I'll try to elaborate.
It seems to me that believing in this thing, being as "just" as it is supposed to be, would bring "some" form of protection if the person's heart is truly pure. I've heard about the whole "free will" thing, and I don't buy it. I just get tired of the whole "I'm not perfect, just forgiven" mentality. Forgiven by "who"? And for "what"? I'm starting to get the urge to ramble, so I'll end it here, for now.
I've tried to answer this before but this is hard to answer as even I don't fully understand it yet. But part of being a Christian is growing in your understanding of God. Some people on this site would find it abhorrent that I would follow something I don't fully understand, but I would remind you that you don't fully understand science. Saying that, here's my answer. Evil, sin, etc. is the absence of good. If you have good then you also have a capacity for evil. Just like if there is light you have a capacity for darkness, simply if the light is removed. When the good is taken out of this world then evil, death, sickness, etc. is the result. And I believe in free will so you'll have to explain to me why you don't believe it.
And the reason for that is sin. Not just original sin (which is part of it) but sin committed every day. Sin leads to death and all the evil in the world.
Sin leads to death.
Jesus died for out sins
What sin did Jesus commit?
None, that's why it was a sacrifice.

I'll ask you the same thing I've asked every Christian whom I've ever heard say this: Please explain how hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes and floods are caused by sin.  (I've never received an answer to this... will you be the first?)
After original sin, Adam and Eve, God said that the earth would no longer be perfect and that it would now be dangerous and cause pain. Since their sin made them not perfect it also resulted in the world not being perfect. Which is why thorns, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. exist. In my opinion.

Quote: Velkyn
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There were thousands of supposed "gospels" around, and they disagreed.  They became "popular" because of the political act of a ruler.  We have Paul evidently not knowing about the supposed "facts" in the Gospels. We have no evidence for any of the supposed events, and you'd certainly have thought such "truth" would have kept the location for the supposed tomb where JC was buried.  But no, we have at least three claimants for that. Do you think that if these things were real, they would forget that?
Thousands? I've never heard that. What facts did Paul not know? People here act like people during the time of Jesus were all retarded. They had common sense and they wanted to retain historical accuracy. People would not have accepted even the historical authenticity of the Bible if it had not been real. Especially early on. And why was there such persecution to those who believe in Jesus. Surely there wouldn't have been punishment by Roman law for people following a guy that never existed. That would die on its own rather quickly. Why would Christianity spread so quickly if Jesus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Don_Quixote on January 14, 2011, 12:16:56 PM
Quote: Velkyn
Quote
There were thousands of supposed "gospels" around, and they disagreed.  They became "popular" because of the political act of a ruler.  We have Paul evidently not knowing about the supposed "facts" in the Gospels. We have no evidence for any of the supposed events, and you'd certainly have thought such "truth" would have kept the location for the supposed tomb where JC was buried.  But no, we have at least three claimants for that. Do you think that if these things were real, they would forget that?
Thousands? I've never heard that. What facts did Paul not know? People here act like people during the time of Jesus were all retarded. They had common sense and they wanted to retain historical accuracy. People would not have accepted even the historical authenticity of the Bible if it had not been real. Especially early on. And why was there such persecution to those who believe in Jesus. Surely there wouldn't have been punishment by Roman law for people following a guy that never existed. That would die on its own rather quickly. Why would Christianity spread so quickly if Jesus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.

[/quote]

Why did the gods of the olympus religion would spread so quickly if Zeus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.
The same question could be made to santa claus, fictional characters or all movies? Why would Harry Potter-mania would spread so quickly if Harry Potter wasn't real?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 12:18:20 PM
I'll ask you the same thing I've asked every Christian whom I've ever heard say this: Please explain how hurricanes, earthquakes, tornadoes and floods are caused by sin.  (I've never received an answer to this... will you be the first?)
After original sin, Adam and Eve, God said that the earth would no longer be perfect and that it would now be dangerous and cause pain. Since their sin made them not perfect it also resulted in the world not being perfect. Which is why thorns, hurricanes, earthquakes, etc. exist. In my opinion.

That doesn't make a lick of sense.  Hurricanes are caused by people eating fruit...?  You are joking, right?

Or are you maybe saying that after they ate the fruit, Yahweh changed the way the atmosphere works, so now we have hurricanes?  In that case, it isn't sin that causes hurricanes, it's Yahweh.  So that's not an answer, either.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 14, 2011, 12:21:31 PM

Maybe laypeople do.  Cosmologists/physicists don't.  There was no singularity at the BB.  There was something like a singularity.  Singularities don't explode.
Ok from what I've seen and read it was described as a singularity. Either way this small ball of super energy is said to have existed.


Volume approached zero, but couldn't be zero.  Energy was HUGE, but finite.  We know this because the universe doesn't have infinite mass.
Sorry, I was using the word infinite in a calculus sense. It's just approaching infinity because you can't ever really get there.

It created spacetime and matter, not exceeded.
It has to come before spacetime and matter to create it, no?

Er, well, no.  We lack, and need, a Theory of Quantum Gravity to explain the details before 10-43 seconds.  BUT.....nothing that happened then can violate currently known laws either.  It is still bound (limited) by current laws.

And yea, we can trace the ENTIRE universe back to 0.0000000000000000000000000000000000000000001 seconds.  Pretty cool, no?
If still bound by current laws then my point stands. The Big Bang is impossible as it breaks many of our currently known laws.


Water runs downhill.  It forms pretty droplets and pools of it swirl along the way.  Intelligently Designed, or following the laws of physics?  The same is true for the universe.  It's just unraveling according to physics.  Galaxies swirl and clump.  Particles condense and interact.  As a whole it gets quite complex, but at any given time, each interaction/event is rather mundane and regular.  There's no magic to it.
If you look at the universe and study the intricacies of it, you will certainly not call it "mundane".

We get tired of correcting "believers" on this.  Evolution deals with the increasing complexity of biologic lifeforms over time.  Abiogenesis deals with the origin of life itself.  Big Bang Theory deals with the birth of the universe.  VERY different things.
But evolution requires some sort of starting place, and most who believe in evolution use the Big Bang as their model for creation.

I can't fault you for not knowing the cutting edge of physics.  Although, cutting edge means the last 10ish years.

The breakthrough here came with the realization that Gravity is "negative energy".  Even simple equations show this, and this has been known for a long time.  But physicists just accepted this as a peculiarity with the "sign" and not physically meaningful.  They blew it off. 

Recently (10ish years) they have -- in the course of pursuing Quantum Gravity, which necessitates chasing down all the loose ends -- come to realize that: no, the sign correct and Gravity actually is NEGATIVE.  Gravity is always attractive.  Objects in a gravity field have less energy than the same object outside a gravity field....in other words...gravitationally bound objects are in an energy minima ALWAYS.  It ALWAYS take energy to escape from a gravity field.

There is also a symmetry between matter and gravity.  Matter emits gravity, gravity works on matter.

What this means, is that all the energy/matter in the universe (positive energy) is balanced by an equal amount of gravity (negative energy) at all times.  The TOTAL energy of the universe is precisely ZERO.  Conservation of Energy isn't violated then.

Several big name physicists have publicly written about this recently: Lawrence Krauss and Stephen Hawking.  It's called The zero-energy universe hypothesis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-energy_universe).
So gravity still existed when nothing did? Well how convenient! Even if that's true it doesn't negate the fact that the Big Bang would still violate the laws of Conservation of mass, matter, momentum, etc. even if not the conservation of energy.

This happens all the time for quantum mechanical objects, and conveniently, the "like-a-singularity" at the BB was just that.  :)
Give me an example when spontaneous generation happens.

It can't happen IN spacetime.  There are energy threshold issues even if it can....ie: It's hard to gather up all the mass of the universe to test this.  This is likely the difference between singulaities and the BB.  Spacetime prevents singularities from exploding, but no spacetime existed at T=0.
So what caused this point of energy to explode?

Sorry for not responding until now. I forgot about this post!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 14, 2011, 12:28:47 PM
Why did the gods of the olympus religion would spread so quickly if Zeus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.
The same question could be made to santa claus, fictional characters or all movies? Why would Harry Potter-mania would spread so quickly if Harry Potter wasn't real?
They weren't said to be real people. Obviously people aren't turned off to fictional characters who are said to either be invisible (Zeus) or fictional (Harry Potter). Jesus was claimed to be a real person. If he didn't even exist or do anything that early Christians claimed then there would have been no following. This is so obvious. If I started going around saying I had a friend named Charlie that could heal people and was going to save the world and claimed he was travelling around with me, when people realized he wasn't there nobody would follow me. However, if I said he was invisible I could still probably convince a few people to follow me. But Jesus was claimed to be a REAL person.

That doesn't make a lick of sense.  Hurricanes are caused by people eating fruit...?  You are joking, right?

Or are you maybe saying that after they ate the fruit, Yahweh changed the way the atmosphere works, so now we have hurricanes?  In that case, it isn't sin that causes hurricanes, it's Yahweh.  So that's not an answer, either.
The world going from perfect to broken is the answer. In a bad world bad things exist.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 12:39:33 PM

That doesn't make a lick of sense.  Hurricanes are caused by people eating fruit...?  You are joking, right?

Or are you maybe saying that after they ate the fruit, Yahweh changed the way the atmosphere works, so now we have hurricanes?  In that case, it isn't sin that causes hurricanes, it's Yahweh.  So that's not an answer, either.
The world going from perfect to broken is the answer. In a bad world bad things exist.

That still doesn't explain anything.  How can two people having once eaten a piece of fruit be responsible for every earthquake, hurricane, tornado and flood that has ever occurred or ever will occur?  It just.  Doesn't.  Make.  Any.  Sense.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 01:04:26 PM
That still doesn't explain anything.  How can two people having once eaten a piece of fruit be responsible for every earthquake, hurricane, tornado and flood that has ever occurred or ever will occur?  It just.  Doesn't.  Make.  Any.  Sense.

Read Genesis and you will have your answer.

But if you say Genesis is bullshit then no point discussing the pair of fruit eaters.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 01:15:40 PM
That still doesn't explain anything.  How can two people having once eaten a piece of fruit be responsible for every earthquake, hurricane, tornado and flood that has ever occurred or ever will occur?  It just.  Doesn't.  Make.  Any.  Sense.

Read Genesis and you will have your answer.

I have read Genesis, more than once, and I still don't have "my" answer.  (It isn't my answer, it's yours, but that's an aside.)

Quote
But if you say Genesis is bullshit then no point discussing the pair of fruit eaters.

It's not even a question of whether Genesis is true or not.  I'm only talking about whether it makes sense -- which it doesn't.  What Genesis says is that Yahweh cursed the earth, gave Eve labor pains, and so on because of their snack.  That doesn't mean that all the suffering in the world is caused by their having eaten the snack, it means that all the suffering in the world is caused by how Yahweh chose to react to their having a snack.  In other words, what JT originally said -- that all the evil in the world is caused by sin -- is not supported by scripture, especially inasmuch as Yahweh could have reacted differently.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 14, 2011, 01:17:29 PM
Read Genesis and you will have your answer.

The Earth is not flat, son.

Quote
But if you say Genesis is bullshit then no point discussing the pair of fruit eaters.

The Earth is not flat, son.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 14, 2011, 01:25:31 PM
The world going from perfect to broken is the answer. In a bad world bad things exist.

How does moral knowledge break a perfect world? 
Would you not say a breakable world is an imperfect world?
What the hell was a Moral Knowledge Tree doing in the middle of the allegedly perfect[1] world anyway?
And what about that Life Tree? 
 1. but breakable, so not actually perfect
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 01:26:39 PM
pianodwarf

God deciding to make the "perfect" unperfect was His decision but the trigger was Adam and Eve raiding the tree out the back.

He could of reacted different but He didn't.

But I tdon't think I am reading you correctly.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 14, 2011, 01:30:13 PM
Someone remind the Dinosaur that he has the wrong god, and there is not "Royal We" in Biblical Hebrew. . . .

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 14, 2011, 01:34:08 PM
Perhaps I can clarify Pianodwarf's post for you, Dinosaurs:

1. Some guy warns a child that if she becomes curious about what's in a particular closed room, then she will be killed.
2. The child beccomes curious about what's in that closed room.
3. In response, the guy not only kills her, but also goes home and breaks every window in his house with a hammer.

According to your reasoning, the child's curiosity is what broke the windows in the man's house.  See the problem, here?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 01:46:18 PM
Perhaps I can clarify Pianodwarf's post for you, Dinosaurs:

1. Some guy warns a child that if she becomes curious about what's in a particular closed room, then she will be killed.
2. The child beccomes curious about what's in that closed room.
3. In response, the guy not only kills her, but also goes home and breaks every window in his house with a hammer.

According to your reasoning, the child's curiosity is what broke the windows in the man's house.  See the problem, here?

No, I said it was the trigger. I also know what you are getting out with breaking unrelated items. However, that was all part of moving the from the perfect world to the unperfect world

But is pianodwarf making a moral judgement on God's punishment?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 14, 2011, 01:49:39 PM
Dinosaurs apparently never bothered to read the myth to learn why YHWH lies to man.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 14, 2011, 01:50:02 PM
Quote: Velkyn
Quote
There were thousands of supposed "gospels" around, and they disagreed.  They became "popular" because of the political act of a ruler.  We have Paul evidently not knowing about the supposed "facts" in the Gospels. We have no evidence for any of the supposed events, and you'd certainly have thought such "truth" would have kept the location for the supposed tomb where JC was buried.  But no, we have at least three claimants for that. Do you think that if these things were real, they would forget that?
Thousands? I've never heard that. What facts did Paul not know? People here act like people during the time of Jesus were all retarded. They had common sense and they wanted to retain historical accuracy. People would not have accepted even the historical authenticity of the Bible if it had not been real. Especially early on. And why was there such persecution to those who believe in Jesus. Surely there wouldn't have been punishment by Roman law for people following a guy that never existed. That would die on its own rather quickly. Why would Christianity spread so quickly if Jesus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.

and here's the problem. You are ignorant of your own religion and its history.  Well, golly you didn't know something. NO KIDDING.  But that doesn't make it not true.  Paul has no mention of the actual life of Jesus as presented in the gospels.  Why not?  Why does Paul never use what Jesus supposedly said to support his arguments? 

And nice strawman but fail.  Sorry, we don't act like the people in 1 AD or earlier were "retarded".  They did fine, just look at the Greeks and Romans. For instance, why did the Romans keep such records and have nothing about a magic man who gathered *thousands* of people around him regularly, in a very fractious occupied land?  Why nothing about that?  And if the Jews and Christians  had any inclination to retain historical accuracy, why did they fail so miserably?  Why is there NO evidence of any of the important events in the bible?  Why is there no date for the "exodus" or any reports of suddenly Egypt being decimated by contemporary nations? Why were there no great invasions then? Why no reports of any earthquakes at the supposed time of JC's cruxifiction?  Why no mass sightings of the day turning to night? 

People weren't accepting the historical accuracy of the Bible. They were ignorant by and large and they were accepting the story as true, just like many accepted that Zeus existed, etc, because they didn't know any better. There's a reason why the nonsense in the bible doesn't happen anymore, because we have recording equipment and the scientific method.  "Early on" doesn't matter since again, we have huge numbers of alternate gospels, etc from that "early on" period.  There was lots of disagreement. 

And ah, the usual Christian "but it has to be true if they were persecuted for it and they still kept to their religion". Sorry, not valid.  People can believe a lot of stupid things and be persecuted for it and it's still not true.  How about the People's Temple?  People believed in Jim Jones and followed him to the point they fled the US to Guyana.  They drank the kool-aid, and that's where that phrase comes from.  They believe in something so stupid but they did it anyway.  People ike to feel special, that they have a magic source of knowledge no one else has and it helpes even more if they are told that by being persecuted it's EVEN BETTER!  It validates them and their religion.  Christians, who weren't as persecuted as many Christians think, though they persecuted, were a threat to the Roman Empire.  So were rambunctious slaves, women, Celts, etc.  Nothing special here at all.  And so what if Christianity spread quickly?  So did the Greek religion when Alexander's armies invaded lots of places clear to India.  And what is "quickly" to you?  A thousand years to cover just the mediterreanan?  1500+ to get anywhere near the Americas or Asia?  All the while transportation modes were improving. 

The historial facts are facts.  Your myths are myths and have nothing.  You try to claim correlation implies causation and you fail. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Azdgari on January 14, 2011, 01:51:13 PM
Perhaps I can clarify Pianodwarf's post for you, Dinosaurs:

1. Some guy warns a child that if she becomes curious about what's in a particular closed room, then she will be killed.
2. The child beccomes curious about what's in that closed room.
3. In response, the guy not only kills her, but also goes home and breaks every window in his house with a hammer.

According to your reasoning, the child's curiosity is what broke the windows in the man's house.  See the problem, here?

No, I said it was the trigger. I also know what you are getting out with breaking unrelated items. However, that was all part of moving the from the perfect world to the unperfect world

But is pianodwarf making a moral judgement on God's punishment?

No, he's not making a moral judgment about it (at least, not in that post).  He's saying that even if one believes the Genesis account, attributing stuff like earthquakes to Adam and Eve eating a fruit is as nonsensical as attributing those broken windows to the little girl's curiosity in my example.

Both the earthquakes and the window-breakings would be properly attributed to a conscious, deliberate decision by the deity and the guy in question, respectively.  They are the ones who did it.  Nobody made them do it.  Why try to shift responsibility to someone else, in this case an innocent (or two)?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 01:55:27 PM
No, he's not making a moral judgment about it (at least, not in that post).  He's saying that even if one believes the Genesis account, attributing stuff like earthquakes to Adam and Eve eating a fruit is as nonsensical as attributing those broken windows to the little girl's curiosity in my example.

Both the earthquakes and the window-breakings would be properly attributed to a conscious, deliberate decision by the deity and the guy in question, respectively.  They are the ones who did it.  Nobody made them do it.  Why try to shift responsibility to someone else, in this case an innocent (or two)?

^^^^ Yes.  This.  Thank you.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 02:01:54 PM

No, he's not making a moral judgment about it (at least, not in that post).  He's saying that even if one believes the Genesis account, attributing stuff like earthquakes to Adam and Eve eating a fruit is as nonsensical as attributing those broken windows to the little girl's curiosity in my example.

Both the earthquakes and the window-breakings would be properly attributed to a conscious, deliberate decision by the deity and the guy in question, respectively.  They are the ones who did it.  Nobody made them do it.  Why try to shift responsibility to someone else, in this case an innocent (or two)?

So if it is not a moral judgment then an error in how the Bible is taught?

But I still don't see it the way you are describing things, that is breaking them into components. In my opinion the punishment was to render earth a less than perfect place and so hence .........earthquakes, child birth, cancer etc and etc.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 02:07:50 PM
But I still don't see it the way you are describing things, that is breaking them into components. In my opinion the punishment was to render earth a less than perfect place and so hence .........earthquakes, child birth, cancer etc and etc.

Yahweh gave a very specific penalty for eating the fruit: he said that they would die.  That's all, nothing more, nothing less.  Therefore, it makes no sense to ascribe earthquakes and tornadoes to eating the fruit.

Are you getting it yet?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 02:53:47 PM

Yahweh gave a very specific penalty for eating the fruit: he said that they would die.  That's all, nothing more, nothing less.  Therefore, it makes no sense to ascribe earthquakes and tornadoes to eating the fruit.

Are you getting it yet?

Well for starters they did not die. ;D

But is it open to translation.

But let's just assume it is definitely "die" and we put to one side they did not die, at least not at that time, then is your issue a moral judgement of God or the teaching that earthquakes are due to original sin.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 14, 2011, 03:01:20 PM
In my opinion the punishment was to render earth a less than perfect place and so hence .........earthquakes, child birth, cancer etc and etc.

Kind of a limited way of looking at things, no?  The universe is just a stage for us, or a tool for your god's wrath.  Not an interconnected system in which we warrant only brief, supporting roles. 

And what makes you think eden was "perfect"? 

You have not answered my questions:
What is perfect about a world where people have no moral capacity?
Would you not say a breakable world is an imperfect world?
What the hell was a Moral Knowledge Tree doing in the middle of the allegedly perfect world anyway?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Don_Quixote on January 14, 2011, 03:06:46 PM
they didn't die, so that makes God  a liar
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 03:11:53 PM
In my opinion the punishment was to render earth a less than perfect place and so hence .........earthquakes, child birth, cancer etc and etc.



Kind of a limited way of looking at things, no?  The universe is just a stage for us, or a tool for your god's wrath.  Not an interconnected system in which we warrant only brief, supporting roles. 

And what makes you think eden was "perfect"? 

Are you now accepting God as a possibility........"or a tool for your god's wrath"

What God says to Adam and Eve after the fruit, child bearing issue, weed and thorns in the crops....suggests pre the fruit all was perfect as per God's creation.


You have not answered my questions:
What is perfect about a world where people have no moral capacity?
Would you not say a breakable world is an imperfect world?
What the hell was a Moral Knowledge Tree doing in the middle of the allegedly perfect world anyway?

1) Perfection was pre the raid on the fruit tree

2) What you mean by "breakable"....spirit, split the earth in half?

3) No idea
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 14, 2011, 03:21:27 PM
Raymondkhessel, Jesus wasn't a threat to the Roman State. He was demanded killed by the Jewish community not the Roman Officials.
Do we actually have more than one source for that?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 14, 2011, 03:21:43 PM
dino, how pathetic.  People can talk about characters and this has nothing to do with them admitting anything.  Is this the best you have? 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 14, 2011, 03:30:39 PM

1) Perfection was pre the raid on the fruit tree


How can something be "perfect" if it's so utterly destroyed just by munching on a fruit or two?

Also, you didn't answer the question.


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What is perfect about a world where people have no moral capacity?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 14, 2011, 03:40:21 PM

Yahweh gave a very specific penalty for eating the fruit: he said that they would die.  That's all, nothing more, nothing less.  Therefore, it makes no sense to ascribe earthquakes and tornadoes to eating the fruit.

Are you getting it yet?

Well for starters they did not die. ;D

Right, I know -- and that's something we've discussed here quite a bit as well -- but I'm trying to keep this thread on-topic.

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But is it open to translation.

Translating from one language to another one always leaves some "wiggle room", but there's no way you can go from "if you eat the fruit, you will die" to "if you eat the fruit, I will wreck the earth's crust, screw up the atmosphere, cause fires to start sporadically and haphazardly, and all kinds of other nasty stuff that I feel like doing".

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But let's just assume it is definitely "die" and we put to one side they did not die, at least not at that time, then is your issue a moral judgement of God or the teaching that earthquakes are due to original sin.

I do have an issue with how Yahweh handled (and still handles) the fruit thing according to the doctrine, but again, I'm trying to keep this on-topic.  My original point stands: if Yahweh decided to implement plate tectonics and everything else because a couple of people ate the fruit -- and they did not know that that would be a consequence of eating the fruit -- then the blame for it lies on Yahweh, not on Adam and Eve.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 04:49:38 PM
dino, how pathetic.  People can talk about characters and this has nothing to do with them admitting anything.  Is this the best you have?

Not sure what mean or are getting at.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 04:54:33 PM

1) Perfection was pre the raid on the fruit tree



How can something be "perfect" if it's so utterly destroyed just by munching on a fruit or two?


You know the munching on the fruit was against Gods one big order.


Also, you didn't answer the question.


Which question Aaron

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 05:04:41 PM

I do have an issue with how Yahweh handled (and still handles) the fruit thing according to the doctrine, but again, I'm trying to keep this on-topic.  My original point stands: if Yahweh decided to implement plate tectonics and everything else because a couple of people ate the fruit -- and they did not know that that would be a consequence of eating the fruit -- then the blame for it lies on Yahweh, not on Adam and Eve.

Won't comment on other parts of post as you deemed it off topic.

OK, so blame is with God. I think we already had that earlier. So again what is your issue. The wrong thing is being taught in terms of original sin and earthquakes etc and/or God's morality.

Given what is in the Bible and putting to one side what we can't mention, what do you think the result of original sin should have been. And No, that is not a question to produced an answer around what we can't talk about.

Perhaps it might need a thread of its own?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 14, 2011, 05:19:34 PM
We are messed up sinful people who can't be with God, but he gave us a way to have our sins forgiven, which is sacrifice. And Jesus was the ultimate sacrifice, allowing us to be saved through his grace if we choose to follow him. If we got into Heaven based on our actions we would all go to Hell.
You have posted something like this before in this or another thread and I asked you a question regarding this that you did not answer. So..I will try a second time...

If we are messed up sinful people and bible god or any other god created us - he/she/it CREATED us that way. The creator, not the creation, is responsible for any design flaws.  According to the bible and what you are describing here, bible god set humans up for failure. Especially if he/it knew everything that would happen. How can you not find that absolutely repulsive?

Anyway sin is a made up word created to make people feel bad about being human. How would you know if I would go to hell based on my actions? You have no knowledge of my actions. Basically you are saying it doesn't matter. God is great. We are wretched, pathetic, worthless, evil sinners. We must grovel at his feet and beg him to forgive us for how horribly he created us.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 14, 2011, 05:23:12 PM
Sin leads to death.
Jesus died for our sins
What sin did Jesus commit?
None, that's why it was a sacrifice.
So, not sinning also leads to death. It would therefore seem that sin does not affect the outcome – we die anyway.
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People here act like people during the time of Jesus were all retarded. They had common sense and they wanted to retain historical accuracy.
Yes, but there is not the slightest proof that the gospels were written for another 70 years. There is not the slightest proof that Jesus ever existed.

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People would not have accepted even the historical authenticity of the Bible if it had not been real.

But they would have accepted the historical accuracy of unicorns and cockatrices, also mentioned in the bible. (I think they were just a little less well educated and informed than us, don’t you?)

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And why was there such persecution to those who believe in Jesus.
The concept is that a political movement against the rule of the scribes and Pharisees was taking place. The movement generally disapproved of the rigid adherence to the laws invented by them. Obviously, this is the same as going on a protest march and speaking against the government in North Korea – the leaders get executed or flee to some other country – which is what seems to have happened (see the imprisonment and execution of various troublemakers apostles or as we say, political activists.

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Why would Christianity spread so quickly if Jesus wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.

No it’s not. In those days travelling preachers (prophets) were 10 a penny. You will note that Christianity never got a foothold in the area in which it is said to have started. Instead, it’s first major site of growth was Rome.

Why did that happen? Well, in Rome you were miles from the site of the alleged incidents, there were no TV news crews, there was no internet and books were very, very few. The travelling prophets could claim anything for their political movement and nobody could contradict them by producing proof to the contrary. You will note that Paul makes very little if any mention of Jesus’ miracles and other ‘wondrous signs’.

And your question back at you,

Why would Islam spread so quickly if Allah wasn't even real? It's nonsense to say that at least the historical facts aren't true.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: nogodsforme on January 14, 2011, 05:26:51 PM
Pagans suffered and died for their faith-- at the hands of Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Does that make Pagan beliefs true? After all, nobody would die for a lie, right? And why would religious authorities attack false beliefs so strongly if they weren't a threat?

Paganism was the most widespread and long lasting belief system in human history. So, since so many people believed in it and it lasted so long, it must have been true, right?

Pagans believed that their gods were real, powerful and interacted with human beings. So, the gods must have been real, powerful and interactive with humans, right?

Pagan beliefs and practices were adopted into Christianity and continue today as Christian traditions (Christmas trees, Easter eggs, miraculous birth of the magical being, said being rising after death, etc). So the pagans were right?

And oh, yeah, Islam spread way faster than Christianity did, and did not need any one ruler to force it on their empire like the Romans did. Today Islam is the fastest growing major religion. So it must be true....
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 05:48:33 PM
Quote
Quote
dino, how pathetic.  People can talk about characters and this has nothing to do with them admitting anything.  Is this the best you have?

Not sure what mean or are getting at.

Very simple.  When someone points out the illogical or cruel behavior of the god figure described by the judeo-christian bible, it is not an admission that such a being exists.  It is to show that a belief in such a figure as real is ridiculous.  It's like pointing out that Darth Vader was cruel for destroying Alderaan.  It's not an admission that Darth Vader exists.

As far as your assertion goes that we should "read genesis" for an explanation as to why natural disasters like the 2004 tsunami or the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, etc happen, I'm quite confused.  To the best of my recollection, there is nothing in genesis of how the distant descendants of Adam and Eve (and again this is not an acknowledgment that such a tale is true) would be punished for her eating the fruit.  Much less that the meteorological patterns would be changed such that periodically, but very randomly, natural disasters would wipe out large numbers of his creation, orphaning innocent babies and small children, leaving parents without their beloved children, and leaving hundreds of thousands sleeping on the streets and susceptible to horrible cholera outbreaks.  Oh, and of course then sending xtians on relief missions to help out those remaining alive from this disaster that he could have just not caused in the first place (still trying to figure or the logic in that).

Even if you somehow believe the genesis story is true (and it's mind-boggling that in the 21st century you feel that way), I really don't see how you make this logical leap that periodic natural disasters are a result of a woman once eating a fruit.  I think you are going from if a=b and b=c, then h must equal x.  It is a rather bizarre non sequitur to draw such a conclusion.

Which brings up another question to the original poster, and I guess to you also.  Why didn't he just come down and sacrifice himself to himself right after Eve ate the fruit?  Or why not do it instead of flooding the whole world a few millennia later?  Why wait until some random point in history, to a very localized people in a small region of the world who had no means of getting the word out to others except via word of mouth, and kind of screwing all the people before them?

Do you really think that makes sense, or do you find it just a tad more likely that it is just the local cultural mythology of those same people, who of course considered themselves the "chosen people" of that god they followed?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Cyberia on January 14, 2011, 05:55:21 PM
It has to come before spacetime and matter to create it, no?
No.  The problem you are having is related to the Frame of Reference you are choosing.  That's not your fault, it's a product of your experiences in life.  EVERYTHING you have experienced leads you to the conclusion that Cause always precedes Effect.  You can even point to college level physics classes to back this up.  So you feel safe in your assertion.

But your assertion is not correct.  It CAN'T be correct.  The Frame of Reference you are using DID NOT EXIST before the Big Bang came INTO existence at the Big Bang.  (EDIT: See you made me do it!!!)  How can there be a "before time"?  See the problem?  This is where any and all "First Cause" arguments break down.  The (temporal) chain of causation ONLY applies within our universe.  Attempting to do so only generates an OUT OF SCOPE error.


If still bound by current laws then my point stands. The Big Bang is impossible as it breaks many of our currently known laws.
You keep saying this, but provide no examples.  Evidence please.


We get tired of correcting "believers" on this.  Evolution deals with the increasing complexity of biologic lifeforms over time.  Abiogenesis deals with the origin of life itself.  Big Bang Theory deals with the birth of the universe.  VERY different things.
But evolution requires some sort of starting place, and most who believe in evolution use the Big Bang as their model for creation.
I believe there is an error in your logic in there somewhere.  That's a greatly humorous quote by the way, wouldn't surprise me if it popped up on a few sigs around here.  :)


I can't fault you for not knowing the cutting edge of physics.  Although, cutting edge means the last 10ish years.

The breakthrough here came with the realization that Gravity is "negative energy".  Even simple equations show this, and this has been known for a long time.  But physicists just accepted this as a peculiarity with the "sign" and not physically meaningful.  They blew it off. 

Recently (10ish years) they have -- in the course of pursuing Quantum Gravity, which necessitates chasing down all the loose ends -- come to realize that: no, the sign correct and Gravity actually is NEGATIVE.  Gravity is always attractive.  Objects in a gravity field have less energy than the same object outside a gravity field....in other words...gravitationally bound objects are in an energy minima ALWAYS.  It ALWAYS take energy to escape from a gravity field.

There is also a symmetry between matter and gravity.  Matter emits gravity, gravity works on matter.

What this means, is that all the energy/matter in the universe (positive energy) is balanced by an equal amount of gravity (negative energy) at all times.  The TOTAL energy of the universe is precisely ZERO.  Conservation of Energy isn't violated then.

Several big name physicists have publicly written about this recently: Lawrence Krauss and Stephen Hawking.  It's called The zero-energy universe hypothesis (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zero-energy_universe).
So gravity still existed when nothing did? Well how convenient! Even if that's true it doesn't negate the fact that the Big Bang would still violate the laws of Conservation of mass, matter, momentum, etc. even if not the conservation of energy.
I try to refine my explanations so laypeople, particularly creationists, can understand them.  I can't fathom how you reached THAT conclusion from my above statement.  Could you explain it further?  While it seems clear to me, that fault might still be mine.

Gravity and matter came into existence together, simultaneously at T=0.  Or infinitesimally after T=0 if you want to get picky.  They are duals of each other.  They balance each other.   The HUGE energy of the BB was the "matter" side.   It's irrelevant if you think of matter being created first, or gravity coming first, or both.  All three cases are literally the same.


This happens all the time for quantum mechanical objects, and conveniently, the "like-a-singularity" at the BB was just that.  :)
Give me an example when spontaneous generation happens.
Virtual Particles (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Virtual_particle). 


So what caused this point of energy to explode?
The Uncertainty Principle is going to be the ultimate cause, regardless of the specifics.  However, regarding the specific chain-of events in this situation: "We don't know, actively working on it" also would be a correct answer.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 06:01:26 PM

As far as your assertion goes that we should "read genesis" for an explanation as to why natural disasters like the 2004 tsunami or the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, etc happen, I'm quite confused.  To the best of my recollection, there is nothing in genesis of how the distant descendants of Adam and Eve (and again this is not an acknowledgment that such a tale is true) would be punished for her eating the fruit.  Much less that the meteorological patterns would be changed such that periodically, but very randomly, natural disasters would wipe out large numbers of his creation, orphaning innocent babies and small children, leaving parents without their beloved children, and leaving hundreds of thousands sleeping on the streets and susceptible to horrible cholera outbreaks.  Oh, and of course then sending xtians on relief missions to help out those remaining alive from this disaster that he could have just not caused in the first place (still trying to figure or the logic in that).

Even if you somehow believe the genesis story is true (and it's mind-boggling that in the 21st century you feel that way), I really don't see how you make this logical leap that periodic natural disasters are a result of a woman once eating a fruit.  I think you are going from if a=b and b=c, then h must equal x.  It is a rather bizarre non sequitur to draw such a conclusion.



This doubling up with pianodwarf might be a rule against that???


Which brings up another question to the original poster, and I guess to you also.  Why didn't he just come down and sacrifice himself to himself right after Eve ate the fruit?  Or why not do it instead of flooding the whole world a few millennia later?  Why wait until some random point in history, to a very localized people in a small region of the world who had no means of getting the word out to others except via word of mouth, and kind of screwing all the people before them?


I don't know.


Do you really think that makes sense, or do you find it just a tad more likely that it is just the local cultural mythology of those same people, who of course considered themselves the "chosen people" of that god they followed?

I find many things in the Bible don’t make sense when God is all powerful and knowing. But if He is lower horsepower then more things fit into place.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 14, 2011, 06:06:23 PM
Quote
Quote
dino, how pathetic.  People can talk about characters and this has nothing to do with them admitting anything.  Is this the best you have?

Not sure what mean or are getting at.

Which brings up another question to the original poster, and I guess to you also.  Why didn't he just come down and sacrifice himself to himself right after Eve ate the fruit?  Or why not do it instead of flooding the whole world a few millennia later?  Why wait until some random point in history, to a very localized people in a small region of the world who had no means of getting the word out to others except via word of mouth, and kind of screwing all the people before them?

Do you really think that makes sense, or do you find it just a tad more likely that it is just the local cultural mythology of those same people, who of course considered themselves the "chosen people" of that god they followed?

This is just wonderful logic! Thank you for that new twist to the absurd Jesus sacrifice idea...  :) :)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 06:06:50 PM
But your assertion is not correct.  It CAN'T be correct.  The Frame of Reference you are using DID NOT EXIST before the Big Bang came INTO existence at the Big Bang.  (EDIT: See you made me do it!!!)  How can there be a "before time"?  See the problem?  This is where any and all "First Cause" arguments break down.  The (temporal) chain of causation ONLY applies within our universe.  Attempting to do so only generates an OUT OF SCOPE error.


So we can’t go outside our universe? With Big Bang we have reached the end of the road.?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 06:16:53 PM
Quote from jt812:
Quote
Saying that, here's my answer. Evil, sin, etc. is the absence of good. If you have good then you also have a capacity for evil. Just like if there is light you have a capacity for darkness, simply if the light is removed. When the good is taken out of this world then evil, death, sickness, etc. is the result. And I believe in free will so you'll have to explain to me why you don't believe it.

First off, this whole "good is to bad as light is to darkness" nonsense fails miserably.  Light (and heat if you want to go there too) is an actual measurable thing.  It is a form of energy, can be detected and objectively measured.  "Good" and "bad" are abstract concepts.  They are adjectives representing how closely one abides to subjective rules of morality of a particular culture.  They are subjective, immeasurable, and, although they are opposites, neither one represents the absence of the other.  I could just as easily state "good just represents the complete absence of bad in this world" and it would make as much logical sense.  So please don't bring up that stupid Internet story ahoy how some kid speaks up to his atheist teacher using nonsensical analogies such as this.  And please don't try to claim it was Einstein or some other unsubstantiated nonsense.

As far as your belief in free will, this is where you just go into logical spaghetti.  There is absolutely positively indisputably NO way you can reconcile the concepts of free will and omniscient god.  It is absolutely impossible.

If you believe in free will, you would have to believe there is a very real possibility that you never even would have made it to this planet and thus any plan for you would have failed.  Your father could have made a free will decision to not marry your mother.  They could have made a free will decision to have intercourse the month before you were conceived, meaning they would have had a baby with a completely different chromosomal make-up and YOU would not have been born.  Some random person could have made a free will decision to drive drunk and struck and killed your mother when she was a child.  Your mother could have made a free will decision to have an abortion.  In fact the same goes for anyone of your ancestors. 

Your god, if he exists, either has a plan for you and was really keeping his fingers crossed that every one of a gazillion free will decisions went just right, or there is no free will.  OR... he just flat out doesn't exist.  He's just the product of ancient superstitions kept alive by a large scale cult mentality.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 06:27:39 PM
Another quote from JT812 (sorry, I'm having problem using the quote feature with my iPhone):
Quote
People here act like people during the time of Jesus were all retarded. They had common sense and they wanted to retain historical accuracy.

Sure, just like the highly accurate accounts of the olympean gods as documented by the ancient Greeks.  Or the highly accurate accounts of gilgamesh as documented by the ancient Sumerians.  Or the highly accurate accounts of Thor and Loki and Odin in Valhalla as documented by the ancient Nordic people.  I could go on and on...

But those people weren't retarded either, right?  So where's he difference?  Let's please not go back to that nonsense about how the apostles or other eyewitnesses died for their beliefs.  I think we've thoroughly debunked that right?  And since all you have is "nope" to the idea that there is nothing unique about the xtian concept of where and how you get where yu want in the afterlife, I guess we can assume that's out too.  So again, unless you think all these other cultures were "retarded", what makes them wrong and the ancient Hebrews right (with alot of editing in later centuries of course)?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 06:32:59 PM
Dinosaurs,
Admitting you don't know is the first step towards rationality.  Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?  When you realize the answer is it is because you were told to believe it by the culture you were raised in, and would have been completely different in another time and place, then it's time to re-think things. 

Sounds like that's what you should be doing right about now.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 14, 2011, 06:40:26 PM

This is just wonderful logic! Thank you for that new twist to the absurd Jesus sacrifice idea...  :) :)

You're welcome!  Of course, I still cant figure out how such a "sacrifice" would be necessary from a supposedly all-powerful god, or how it would even be a "sacrifice" anyway.  But whatever.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Cyberia on January 14, 2011, 06:40:35 PM
So we can’t go outside our universe? With Big Bang we have reached the end of the road.?

I think you'd be surprised at how much subtlety and complexity is involved with those questions and their answers.  In general, No and Yes, respectively.  But specifically, maybe and maybe, depending on which model/theory you are using.  Empirically, we don't yet know precisely which case our universe fits, but we can rule out all but a handful of categories.

The Plank probe, which has just reported it's initial finding, is going to produce decades of research on this subject and really narrow down the possibilities.  Unfortunately we're going to have to wait another year for the final CMB data.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 06:48:26 PM

I think you'd be surprised at how much subtlety and complexity is involved with those questions and their answers.  In general, No and Yes, respectively.  But specifically, maybe and maybe, depending on which model/theory you are using.  Empirically, we don't yet know precisely which case our universe fits, but we can rule out all but a handful of categories.

The Plank probe, which has just reported it's initial finding, is going to produce decades of research on this subject and really narrow down the possibilities.  Unfortunately we're going to have to wait another year for the final CMB data.

That as I remember is similar to what a theoretical physicist said in this sort of debate on a data base sites non DB forums.

I could have this upside down but I seem to remember him saying something about Plank and some incredible small number.

I might over the weekend go back to the thread and find a couple of key postings and see what you think.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 06:58:20 PM
Dinosaurs,
Admitting you don't know is the first step towards rationality.  Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?  When you realize the answer is it is because you were told to believe it by the culture you were raised in, and would have been completely different in another time and place, then it's time to re-think things. 

Sounds like that's what you should be doing right about now.

I have done it every which way for the last, probably 45 years, at least since I was 15. Caused a family shit stir in the family (Catholic)when I bought Darwin's book with pocket money I had saved ;D

Quote
Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?

It is the personality in combination with life experiences.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 14, 2011, 07:59:19 PM

No, he's not making a moral judgment about it (at least, not in that post).  He's saying that even if one believes the Genesis account, attributing stuff like earthquakes to Adam and Eve eating a fruit is as nonsensical as attributing those broken windows to the little girl's curiosity in my example.

Both the earthquakes and the window-breakings would be properly attributed to a conscious, deliberate decision by the deity and the guy in question, respectively.  They are the ones who did it.  Nobody made them do it.  Why try to shift responsibility to someone else, in this case an innocent (or two)?

So if it is not a moral judgment then an error in how the Bible is taught?

But I still don't see it the way you are describing things, that is breaking them into components. In my opinion the punishment was to render earth a less than perfect place and so hence .........earthquakes, child birth, cancer etc and etc.
there are 38,000 plus ways of reading the Bible hence there are 38000+ christian denominations. They all agree on the core story but each and every one interprets that coree story in their own way EPIC FAIL
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 14, 2011, 08:01:11 PM
Dinosaurs,
Admitting you don't know is the first step towards rationality.  Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?  When you realize the answer is it is because you were told to believe it by the culture you were raised in, and would have been completely different in another time and place, then it's time to re-think things. 

Sounds like that's what you should be doing right about now.

I have done it every which way for the last, probably 45 years, at least since I was 15. Caused a family shit stir in the family (Catholic)when I bought Darwin's book with pocket money I had saved ;D

Quote
Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?

It is the personality in combination with life experiences.
You have failed to elaborate why or how you ignore scientific exploration and discovery for a book that has more holes in it than a sieve
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 14, 2011, 08:03:56 PM
Pagans suffered and died for their faith-- at the hands of Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Does that make Pagan beliefs true? After all, nobody would die for a lie, right? And why would religious authorities attack false beliefs so strongly if they weren't a threat?

Paganism was the most widespread and long lasting belief system in human history. So, since so many people believed in it and it lasted so long, it must have been true, right?

Pagans believed that their gods were real, powerful and interacted with human beings. So, the gods must have been real, powerful and interactive with humans, right?

Pagan beliefs and practices were adopted into Christianity and continue today as Christian traditions (Christmas trees, Easter eggs, miraculous birth of the magical being, said being rising after death, etc). So the pagans were right?

And oh, yeah, Islam spread way faster than Christianity did, and did not need any one ruler to force it on their empire like the Romans did. Today Islam is the fastest growing major religion. So it must be true....
Christians in early America did the same thing to the aboriginal population,they considered us heathans
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 14, 2011, 08:43:32 PM
pianodwarf

God deciding to make the "perfect" unperfect was His decision but the trigger was Adam and Eve raiding the tree out the back.

He could of reacted different but He didn't.

But I tdon't think I am reading you correctly.

You make no sense again mate. This is the kind of theological contortianism that people revert to if they want to hang on to their pre-conceived notion at all cost. In any case - point me towards any reason you have to believe that is not your desire to believe.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 14, 2011, 08:46:03 PM
Dinosaurs,
Admitting you don't know is the first step towards rationality.  Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?  When you realize the answer is it is because you were told to believe it by the culture you were raised in, and would have been completely different in another time and place, then it's time to re-think things. 

Sounds like that's what you should be doing right about now.

I have done it every which way for the last, probably 45 years, at least since I was 15. Caused a family shit stir in the family (Catholic)when I bought Darwin's book with pocket money I had saved ;D

Quote
Your next question should be why did you believe it in the first place?

It is the personality in combination with life experiences.

Which translates to: because I feel like it, and because there are a whole bunch of things that happened to me that made me feel like it.
No more, mate. Thats really all there is. This is fine - but you cannot make any statement based on it that has anything to do with anything outside your own thoughts. You must be honest and say - I have no proof of this, except for a strong feeling, which I treasure.

Whats so wrong with that?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 14, 2011, 08:49:46 PM
JT, I asked you a bunch of questions earlier- will you have time to address them at all? I know there is a lot of them and there will be a lot of ground to cover, but the number of logical problems seem to numerous that I feel like I have barely scratched the surface, and I do appreciate a good honest debate about these things.

If you just dont fancy it, let me know and I'll move on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 10:47:07 PM
pianodwarf

God deciding to make the "perfect" unperfect was His decision but the trigger was Adam and Eve raiding the tree out the back.

He could of reacted different but He didn't.

But I tdon't think I am reading you correctly.


You make no sense again mate. This is the kind of theological contortianism that people revert to if they want to hang on to their pre-conceived notion at all cost. In any case - point me towards any reason you have to believe that is not your desire to believe.

Probably because that is written in the context set by pianodwarf. That is, the assumption the part of the Bible where Eve in Genesis eats the forbidden fruit is true while at the same time ignoring what God said to Adam and Eve would happen if they ate the forbidden fruit.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 10:50:52 PM


Which translates to: because I feel like it, and because there are a whole bunch of things that happened to me that made me feel like it.
No more, mate. Thats really all there is. This is fine - but you cannot make any statement based on it that has anything to do with anything outside your own thoughts. You must be honest and say - I have no proof of this, except for a strong feeling, which I treasure.

Whats so wrong with that?

Of course I have no proof.

But if I jump to your side will I have proof?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 10:57:41 PM

You have failed to elaborate why or how you ignore scientific exploration and discovery for a book that has more holes in it than a sieve

Scientific discovery takes me to the beginning and then says we can't go any further. Thus the answer is supernatural, either as in a god or gods or a set of laws that are outside our laws and thus supernatural.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 14, 2011, 11:11:21 PM
Are you now accepting God as a possibility........"or a tool for your god's wrath"

Good gracious, no.  Have you ever heard of literary criticism?  To discuss the character Ophelia in Hamlet, one need not believe Ophelia was an actual person.  Ophelia = yhwh.  Only Ophelia is more pleasant.

What God says to Adam and Eve after the fruit, child bearing issue, weed and thorns in the crops....suggests pre the fruit all was perfect as per God's creation.

Perfect?  Or just better?  I think "perfect" is an unjustifiable embellishment. 

1) Perfection was pre the raid on the fruit tree

So people incapable of moral knowledge is a perfect state?  People not knowing the difference between good and evil is perfect?

2) What you mean by "breakable"....spirit, split the earth in half?

I don't know.  You are the one who used the term first.  You tell me.

3) No idea

And that does not make you curious?  That does not set off alarms or raise any warning flags?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 14, 2011, 11:23:26 PM

What God says to Adam and Eve after the fruit, child bearing issue, weed and thorns in the crops....suggests pre the fruit all was
perfect as per God's creation.



Perfect?  Or just better?  I think "perfect" is an unjustifiable embellishment. 


But if we are discussing the eating of the fruit and pre and post the eating of the fruit then we are discussing in the context that the Bible or at least that part of th Bible is true. Do you agree with that?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 15, 2011, 01:27:39 AM

What God says to Adam and Eve after the fruit, child bearing issue, weed and thorns in the crops....suggests pre the fruit all was
perfect as per God's creation.



Perfect?  Or just better?  I think "perfect" is an unjustifiable embellishment. 


But if we are discussing the eating of the fruit and pre and post the eating of the fruit then we are discussing in the context that the Bible or at least that part of th Bible is true. Do you agree with that?
A dog with less knowledge than adam and eve knows not to crap on the carpet. The dog knows it is wrong but may not understand the consequences.
Saying that Adam and Eve must not have had the knowledge requiered to know the consequences.... God as he always has done,did a terrible job of explaining himself
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 01:43:26 AM

Saying that Adam and Eve must not have had the knowledge requiered to know the consequences.... God as he always has done,did a terrible job of explaining himself

Didn't God say they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 01:45:16 AM
You know the munching on the fruit was against Gods one big order.

This doesn't really answer my question.  How can muching on a piece of fruit ruin perfection forever?  Doesn't it strike you that it can't be called perfection if it takes so little to ruin it forever?  Seriously; a fucking fruit?   :?



Quote

Also, you didn't answer the question.


Which question Aaron

The one I posted at the end of my post.   &)

Here it is, again:

Quote
What is perfect about a world where people have no moral capacity?

Screwtape asked this question, but you gave no real answer to this.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 01:52:53 AM

This doesn't really answer my question.  How can muching on a piece of fruit ruin perfection forever?  Doesn't it strike you that it can't be called perfection if it takes so little to ruin it forever?  Seriously; a fucking fruit?   :?


I think this whole area was covered with pinaodwarf and if I press on with it I think it will be classed as trolling as I am up to 30%. and have tried to cross reference my postings with the warning times to see which type of post is causing the trolling problem.


What is perfect about a world where people have no moral capacity?


Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 02:28:57 AM
I think this whole area was covered with pinaodwarf and if I press on with it I think it will be classed as trolling as I am up to 30%. and have tried to cross reference my postings with the warning times to see which type of post is causing the trolling problem.

...............  :?

That... wasn't even about the subject.  Methinks that if you actually answer questions instead of playing "woe is me", no one would say you are trolling.

Now can we get back on subject?



Quote
Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.

Wow, I'm surprised to see a christian conceed this point.  Of course, I think this does raise a few more questions for you; was god unable or unwilling to create a perfect world?  Why or why noy?


edit: fixed quoting
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 02:46:03 AM

That... wasn't even about the subject.  Methinks that if you actually answer questions instead of playing "woe is me", no one would say you are trolling.

That has not been the case. I might have missed a couple but I have answered/repsonded to about every post directed to me. You might not like the answer or agree or whatever.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dkit on January 15, 2011, 03:45:53 AM
I've removed the off-topic posts in case anyone was wondering what happened.

I would suggest not making PM's public, even if it's an anonymously generated warning. 

Back to your regularly scheduled program.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 03:49:16 AM

That has not been the case. I might have missed a couple but I have answered/repsonded to about every post directed to me. You might not like the answer or agree or whatever.



To quote myself:

Quote
Now can we get back on subject?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 04:02:15 AM
Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.



Wow, I'm surprised to see a christian conceed this point.  Of course, I think this does raise a few more questions for you; was god unable or unwilling to create a perfect world?  Why or why noy?


I simply conceded as I saw the next stage being the trolling. But let's see how we go.

Now the very fact we are discussing this must mean for the sake of the discussion we assume that God existed and created everything as described.

Thus God created the perfect world, simple.

And you said his communication was poor to Adam and Eve. Not so, he told them they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit. Can't be much clearer than that.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 15, 2011, 04:41:29 AM
Now the very fact we are discussing this must mean for the sake of the discussion we assume that God existed and created everything as described.

No.

Still cannot identify the god, I see.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 15, 2011, 04:45:22 AM
And you said his communication was poor to Adam and Eve. Not so, he told them they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit. Can't be much clearer than that.

So curiosity and knowledge is bad, blind obedience is good?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 05:06:27 AM
And you said his communication was poor to Adam and Eve. Not so, he told them they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit. Can't be much clearer than that.


So curiosity and knowledge is bad, blind obedience is good?

If a God tells you that you will die if you do something then I would not class that as blind obedience.  ;D

But what are you trying to establsh here given you think the whole thing is a fairy story. If it is to seek my opinion on the basis of being the believer then a couple of factors have to be considered.

1) Assuming this is the ultimate creator then the reasons would be fine for the Adam/Eve/Apple deal.

2) To take the view that all was not proper with the Adam/Eve/Apple deal then that would mean a change in belief has occured. Basically God would be dropped down the ladder a few rungs.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 15, 2011, 07:59:09 AM
But if I jump to your side will I have proof?

Proof of what?  (Hint: if you say, "Proof that God doesn't exist", you're making a fundamentally erroneous presupposition and will have it immediately and forcefully corrected by a number of people, so be ready for that.  Fair warning.)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 15, 2011, 08:26:19 AM
But if we are discussing the eating of the fruit and pre and post the eating of the fruit then we are discussing in the context that the Bible or at least that part of th Bible is true. Do you agree with that?
Goodness gracious, of course not. You don't start an interpretation of any text with the assumption of its content's veracity. If it's needed for proper interpretation (propaganda, historical texts, etx), you strive to confirm stuff beforehand by cross-referencing content with rl evidence (archeological, say).
The story can be literal or metaphorical and still say the same thing. In the absence of evidence of anything in it being documentary, I'd say we approach it like any other book.



Also, how would A&E (in the context of a fictitious story) know what they were doing was wrong when they couldn't yet distinguish good and evil? They didn't know about shame, fear, much less death, how would they know to follow the command?
Seems to me they were damned for finding out that finding out what was wrong was wrong.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 11:15:16 AM
Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.


Thus God created the perfect world, simple.

Gah, which is it?  This, and your trolling nonsense tells me you're not serious about this conversation.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 15, 2011, 11:29:57 AM
Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.


Thus God created the perfect world, simple.

Gah, which is it?  This, and your trolling nonsense tells me you're not serious about this conversation.

I think we have to give the theists a slack. Their ability (just look at William Lane Craig) to try to rationally defend complete nonsense would make them real talents as lawyers.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 15, 2011, 12:11:09 PM


Which translates to: because I feel like it, and because there are a whole bunch of things that happened to me that made me feel like it.
No more, mate. Thats really all there is. This is fine - but you cannot make any statement based on it that has anything to do with anything outside your own thoughts. You must be honest and say - I have no proof of this, except for a strong feeling, which I treasure.

Whats so wrong with that?

Of course I have no proof.

But if I jump to your side will I have proof?

You will believe in things that you have reason to believe in - not just what you want to believe. You do not need proof to not believe in something - do you need proof to extinguish your belief in smurfs, the flying spaghetti monster, Russells teapot? No, you don't. You would only believe in them if you had reasonable evidence of their existence.

You have supplied not a shred of reasonable proof, so unless you can find some, you will have to admit that your only reason to believe is your desire to believe.

You can try to skirt the issue and you can try to find cracks in my philosophy, but that does not change the fundamental issue, which you have still not addressed. I think the only honest response is to admit that you believe because you like believing.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 12:16:01 PM
I think we have to give the theists a slack. Their ability (just look at William Lane Craig) to try to rationally defend complete nonsense would make them real talents as lawyers.

Kinda hard, though, to figure out which bit of nonsense they're defending when they say yes and no to both answers.

Right now, I'm pretty sure Dinosaurs is just trying to be goofy.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: black ink on January 15, 2011, 01:42:41 PM
First, hi to everyone.

I have been a regular "guest" here and I just just joined because I am disturbed by what JT812 wrote that mankind is to be blamed for all the tragedy caused by disasters that has inflicted our world since the beginning. So now I have few questions for JT812 that I hope he can clarify.

1. Are we also responsible for that giant red storm in Jupiter? How about when pieces of the comet hit Jupiter? What about the the volcanic activities in the moons beyond?
2. Is this the belief of all Christians, that mankind's "sin" is the cause of every tragedy?

I'm only asking because I don't like being blamed for suffering of people I've never met before.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 15, 2011, 01:50:35 PM
First, hi to everyone.

I have been a regular "guest" here and I just just joined because I am disturbed by what JT812 wrote that mankind is to be blamed for all the tragedy caused by disasters that has inflicted our world since the beginning. So now I have few questions for JT812 that I hope he can clarify.

1. Are we also responsible for that giant red storm in Jupiter? How about when pieces of the comet hit Jupiter? What about the the volcanic activities in the moons beyond?
2. Is this the belief of all Christians, that mankind's "sin" is the cause of every tragedy?

I'm only asking because I don't like being blamed for suffering of people I've never met before.

Welcome!

Good post! As Dawkins says it his "God Delusion", it is really incredibly arrogant and petty to believe everything that goes on on our Earth and the universe somehow is related to personal, human experiences like some girl having pre-marital sex or that two men happen to fall in love with each other...
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 15, 2011, 02:32:28 PM
2. Is this the belief of all Christians, that mankind's "sin" is the cause of every tragedy?
I know you're not asking me, but thankfully no.
It depends on the denomination and individual character. It's a very common interpretation of the story; and another one that christians can ignore to lead lives with a semblance of normalcy. Of course that puts them into danger of being called "no true christians" and of course they'll be going to hell according to other no-true-christians.

Quote
I'm only asking because I don't like being blamed for suffering of people I've never met before.
Yeah, this one always got me as a kid. The miracles I could deal with, even the slaughters, but this is just so clearly unfair.
I also don't like being culpable for something I did not do, much less thanking the guy who thought it wise to get himself temporarily killed in order to forgive me for someone else's transgression.
The whole A&E thing strikes me as a cop putting a charge to his balls in order to forgive me for the parking ticket my warden-of-state grandfather got while in the cop's care. I'm still getting the parking ticket, of course.

It makes much more sense in the preceding non-canonical myths where god is merely one survivor among several after a grand battle between Marduk and Tiamat. Those stories incidentally also explain why god was unable to prevent the snake from tempting Eve or why the origin of angels is not mentioned in the bible at all.


And welcome to the forums, of course ;)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 15, 2011, 06:28:53 PM
Ok, it was not perfect pre eating the fruit.
...
I simply conceded as I saw the next stage being the trolling. But let's see how we go.


Dinosaurs,

It looks like you conceded a point dishonestly and then went right back to it.  Is that a fair assessment?

If you keep doing things like this, no one will want to talk to you.  How would you like to try to have a discussion with someone who does that?  Rather frustrating, don't you think?

regards,
Screwtape

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 15, 2011, 06:29:04 PM
I'm only asking because I don't like being blamed for suffering of people I've never met before.

Well . . . should you not have thought of that . . . before YOU TOOK THAT LAST POPTART!!!!1!!!!!!ELEVENTY!

--J.D.

P.S. Welcome to the Forums (http://www.millan.net/minimations/smileys/wavesmile.gif) (http://www.millan.net)






P.P.S. Two drink minimum. . . .
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 06:50:58 PM
It looks like you conceded a point dishonestly and then went right back to it.  Is that a fair assessment?

If you keep doing things like this, no one will want to talk to you.  How would you like to try to have a discussion with someone who does that?  Rather frustrating, don't you think?

regards,
Screwtape


But surely the tone of my reply indicated it was not a true response and I explained why. But if moderators send me warnings about troll posts it would be more instructive to point to the posts rather than me guessing the style of post based on the approximate times of their warnings.

Instructions should not be riddles. For example, Ambassador Pony posts on the thread below to respond to William before further posting. Obviously I responded to the William post immediately above Ambassador Pony's instruction post. But that was not the post it was Williams 5 above.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 07:00:29 PM
But surely the tone of my reply indicated it was not a true response and I explained why. But if moderators send me warnings about troll posts it would be more instructive to point to the posts rather than me guessing the style of post based on the approximate times of their warnings.

Instructions should not be riddles. For example, Ambassador Pony posts on the thread below to respond to William before further posting. Obviously I responded to the William post immediately above Ambassador Pony's instruction post. But that was not the post it was Williams 5 above.

Seriously, is this your tactic; to lawyer your way through a conversation so that you don't actually talk about the issue at hand?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 07:13:12 PM
But surely the tone of my reply indicated it was not a true response and I explained why. But if moderators send me warnings about troll posts it would be more instructive to point to the posts rather than me guessing the style of post based on the approximate times of their warnings.

Instructions should not be riddles. For example, Ambassador Pony posts on the thread below to respond to William before further posting. Obviously I responded to the William post immediately above Ambassador Pony's instruction post. But that was not the post it was Williams 5 above.



Seriously, is this your tactic; to lawyer your way through a conversation so that you don't actually talk about the issue at hand?

How did you come up with that view. If moderators would point to the posts they say are troll it would be easier.

You will also note the moderators demand I answer any questions. Well I could answer No Comment but that won't count. Or give my own style and true answer but that will be "troll" at least based on me guessing if it would be troll. Thus if it looks like my true answer would be deemed as troll then I am only left with a simple concede type answer and which I would have thought was obvious.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 15, 2011, 07:13:33 PM
Instructions should not be riddles.

Mk 4:10-12: And when he was alone, those who were about him with the twelve asked him concerning the parables.  And he said to them, "To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of Big Daddy [Stop that.--Ed.] but for those outside everything happens in parables so that they may indeed see but not perceive and may indeed hear but not understand lest they should turn again, and be forgiven." [RSV corrected--Ed.]

(http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/lookaround.gif)

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Tinyal on January 15, 2011, 07:42:29 PM


How did you come up with that view. If moderators would point to the posts they say are troll it would be easier.

You will also note the moderators demand I answer any questions. Well I could answer No Comment but that won't count. Or give my own style and true answer but that will be "troll" at least based on me guessing if it would be troll. Thus if it looks like my true answer would be deemed as troll then I am only left with a simple concede type answer and which I would have thought was obvious.

Dinosaurs, you don't quite seem to understand the meaning of 'Trolling' (and the way English works 'trolling' is the word you are looking for - a 'troll' is, in the context of this (and many other) forums, a person who posts just for the sake of getting a reaction, or who continually posts meaningless or inappropriate statements or reply's to honest questions).  I am sure the Mods will correct me if I am wrong, but please keep the above definitions in mind.   An example of trolling would be if someone asks you why you made some sort of statement, and you reply with nothing but bible verses - or make some other inappropiate reply such as 'oh well', or 'just because', or similar statements.  Do that enough times on this discussion forum (remember this - discussion goes 2 ways here, we do not tolerate people preaching to us, or quoting the bible back at us -- many of us have had decades of people doing that to us, and quite a few of us have read / studied the bible start to finish more than once.)

Another example of 'trolling'  this is a discussion forum, you came here of your own free will, the rules are easy to follow and well documented - replying 'no comment' under these circumstances is not acceptable.  Do you now understand why?

Lastly, a bit of unasked for advice:  when you ask a question , you will get honest, well-thought out and (in many cases) researched & documented replies.  On this board (again, I am not speaking for the moderators, this is just my own view from my own experiences here, and I am quite sure the mods will correct me if I'm wrong), you really should consider giving the same sorts of reply's to others questions - it's only fair

There is also the ability to simply say 'I need more time to properly reply', or ask for a one-on-one room so that you don't get overwhelmed with trying to answer too many replies.

Just a bit of friendly (unofficial) advice, and some examples to assist you.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 08:30:08 PM
How did you come up with that view.

You answered your own question in the very same post.   &)


Quote
You will also note the moderators demand I answer any questions. Well I could answer No Comment but that won't count. Or give my own style and true answer but that will be "troll" at least based on me guessing if it would be troll. Thus if it looks like my true answer would be deemed as troll then I am only left with a simple concede type answer and which I would have thought was obvious.

See?  Instead of answering questions and sticking to the actual topic on hand, you give us bullshit with this lawyering/stonewalling tactic of yours.  Less lawyering and more discussions will net you fewer accusations of trolling.  If you're confused about what the mods are telling you, you can always ask them for clarifications; whenver on the fourms directly or via PMs.  Did you ever consider that?  I'm guessing you already knew you could've done that, but chose to bullshit us instead for your jollies.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 08:37:26 PM

See?  Instead of answering questions and sticking to the actual topic on hand, you give us bullshit with this lawyering/stonewalling tactic of yours.  Less lawyering and more discussions will net you fewer accusations of trolling.  If you're confused about what the mods are telling you, you can always ask them for clarifications; whenver on the fourms directly or via PMs.  Did you ever consider that?  I'm guessing you already knew you could've done that, but chose to bullshit us instead for your jollies.

Point to previous posts that you consider as lawyering.


If you're confused about what the mods are telling you, you can always ask them for clarifications; whenver on the fourms directly or via PMs


What the fuick do think I have been doing. I have asked them to point to previous postings they consider to be trolling.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 15, 2011, 09:44:15 PM
If you understand it then why do you keep claiming it's impossible?

I didn't claim it was impossible. I claimed you were wrong. To reiterate a point that you ignored, if you have to combine two absolute statements in order to make sense of them then they are not absolute. An absolute statement is complete, perfect, and final. If an absolute statement says that you should hate the world and everything in it. As an absolute, you cannot turn around and bring in another statement about loving the world. Any change or qualification made to the statement renders it non-absolute.

Go back to post 225 and actually address the points made there instead of creating strawmen.

I've told you how they work together and you still keep asking how they work together. I know (not being sarcastic) it is a deep idea, I would probably have to write something very lengthy to really give it justice, but it's obvious you don't understand it, whether you say you do or not, because you keep making a big deal about it.

Yes, you have said how they work together. You're still wrong. You're still using words and terms dishonestly, twisting them to mean something different to suit your goals as has been pointed out a couple of times now.. You still are refusing to respond to several very glaring flaws and omissions in your posts. And it's still really stupid.

You are not demonstrating any degree of depth. You are demonstrating a vey strong lack of ability to think. Your ideas are not deep. If you had actually given them any real thought you would not have to constantly duck and avoid the issues raised against you. This sort of thing is resorted to so often by Christians that we have pet-names for these tactics. Which I also mentioned previously.

To repeat myself once more, and I expect you'll ignore again. You are rationalizing. Your only claim to why this is how the bible should be read is because you say that this is the only way that makes sense. This is what we call the "Magic Decoder Ring". You are claiming to know how to interpret it without any actual justification for why your method is valid. This is especially laughable considering the few thousand other versions that would disagree with you. You have no valid reason for why it should be read that way. Merely an appeal to your own minds inability to think of any other option that you can use to make sense of it. Of course there's always the option that the bible was written by a bunch of primitive humans decades or centuries apart, each with their own views and motivations, and has nothing to do with a real god. That would make a lot of sense. However like everything else that you obviously don't like to think about you ignore that.

You cannot defend your beliefs with any level of rational or intelligent thought so you resort to twisting words around, so that contradicting statements can fit together yet still be absolute. You spend your time lying about what words mean, and anything else to make your position seem rational. You are arguing from faith. And faith is not deep. It is the shallowest form of thought, because by it's very nature, it is unexamined.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Aaron123 on January 15, 2011, 10:00:35 PM

Point to previous posts that you consider as lawyering.

In this thread alone, I'm seeing it in post 300, 305, 320 and 322.

In post 300, instead of answering a question, you babble some nonsense about trolling.
In post 305, you retract a concession you made earlier, making up some nonsense about trolling
In post 320, you complain lawyer about how the mods didn't explain everything to you down to the last detail
In post 322, you make some more nonsense about trolling.

You're also doing this in the "How Do Adherents Explain Evolution" thread, and the mods aren't too happy with you there.  Seriously, I'm getting tired of talking to someone more interested in tactics than they are with whatever topic we're suppose to be talking about.

Just talk about what's on-topic, and I'll be happy to have a talk, but otherwise, there doesn't seem to be much point in trying to carry a conversation with you.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 10:11:11 PM
But if we are discussing the eating of the fruit and pre and post the eating of the fruit then we are discussing in the context that the Bible or at least that part of th Bible is true. Do you agree with that?

Goodness gracious, of course not. You don't start an interpretation of any text with the assumption of its content's veracity.


Also, how would A&E (in the context of a fictitious story) know what they were doing was wrong when they couldn't yet distinguish good and evil? They didn't know about shame, fear, much less death, how would they know to follow the command?
Seems to me they were damned for finding out that finding out what was wrong was wrong.

But the Bible was wriiten for others to read. It is reasonable to assume that God had informed Adam and Eve what "death" was. 

Also, if I remember correctly Eve had to be tempted by the serpent and resisted and I think she said someting about dieing etc.


Another point. Why did God put the forbidden fruit there as a temptation? That would indicate He needed a "test" to see if they would obey which would indicate He was not all powerful. Secondly, did he need an excuse so either he could change the world so as it would no longer be perfect or was it because He was a limited god and what He had created was imperfect from the start and He needed to cover that up. But either way that sounds like He knew the Bible would be written.

As an aside was the serpent a snake or did it God change it to a snake after Adam and Ave took ate the fruit.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 15, 2011, 10:27:22 PM

Point to previous posts that you consider as lawyering.



In this thread alone, I'm seeing it in post 300, 305, 320 and 322.

In post 300, instead of answering a question, you babble some nonsense about trolling.
In post 305, you retract a concession you made earlier, making up some nonsense about trolling
In post 320, you complain lawyer about how the mods didn't explain everything to you down to the last detail
In post 322, you make some more nonsense about trolling.


When I said "Point to previous posts that you consider as lawyering" I meant previous to trolling warnings. You have only pointed to the "post warning" threads.


You're also doing this in the "How Do Adherents Explain Evolution" thread, and the mods aren't too happy with you there.  Seriously, I'm getting tired of talking to someone more interested in tactics than they are with whatever topic we're suppose to be talking about.


I will check the thread.


Just talk about what's on-topic, and I'll be happy to have a talk, but otherwise, there doesn't seem to be much point in trying to carry a conversation with you.

But it was you or another poster said I should raise any issues with the moderators and either on a thread or a PM

Personally I would much rather free posting and if you think it was trolling then don't respond. But surely if I was deliberately trolling I would have started threads. I have been on several forums and the troll has always been a thread starter. I am happy to accept the moderators or others see some of my postings as trolling as it is after all in the eye of the beholder but I have not set out to make trolling posts.

But let's forget it and move on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Odin on January 15, 2011, 11:32:11 PM
As an aside was the serpent a snake or did it God change it to a snake after Adam and Ave took ate the fruit.

I can't believe you are seriously arguing about this obvious fairy tale as if it were true.  To any open mind, it's obvious that the story is an alegory, and has no basis in fact. 

The reason most of us here reject the Judeo/Christian deity is just because the stories, if taken literally, are too ridiculous to be taken literally.  Talking snakes, a man living in the belly of the great fish, a global flood, the Exodus which never happened (no archaeological evidence), and the absolute heinous story of Job -  these are enough to make a thinking man reject the whole religion out of hand.

Odin, King of the Gods
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 15, 2011, 11:58:07 PM
Dino you "think" she said something about dying? God either said it or he did not. She either told the talking snake about death or she did not
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 12:21:33 AM
Dino you "think" she said something about dying? God either said it or he did not. She either told the talking snake about death or she did not
Genesis 3:3 and 3:4
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 16, 2011, 12:32:18 AM
Raymondkhessel, Jesus wasn't a threat to the Roman State. He was demanded killed by the Jewish community not the Roman Officials. So instead of making up some elaborate story you could make fun of (which I noticed is done a lot on this site; arguments I never made are set up for me so they can be mocked and destroyed), you could have simply looked up what the Bible says happened. "When it was evening, there came a rich man from Arimathea, named Joseph, who also was a disciple of Jesus. He went to Pilate and asked fro the body of Jesus. The Pilate ordered it to be given to him. And Joseph took the body and wrapped it in a clean linen shroud and laid it in his own new tomb, which he had cut in rock."

Yeah. I know what it says. He would have been an enemy of the state for causing civil unrest among the Jewish population. Rome wasn't the Jew's personal hitsquad. They had their own reasons for going along with it, in the context of the story.

There was nothing stopping the Jews from murdering a blasphemous preacher in an alley someplace if they wanted it bad enough. But that doesn't make for good storytelling, and the god in the story is really big on dramatics. So we get Rome acting incredibly Un-Roman in a very silly empowerment story for the disenfranchised. Go, underdog! Way to beat the system, Jesus!

I'm telling you, having studied ancient Rome pretty extensively, as well as the findings of those who have spent LIFETIMES doing so, there's not a chance in hell that actually happened, despite what the story book says. The story that was written, I remind you, decades after the event supposedly occured anyway.

I mean, s**t, it says in the book that Spiderman's vigilante lifestyle is totally cool with the NYC Police Dept., right? That they just give him a golfclap when he goes all aggravated assault & battery on some purse-snatcher, right?

Riiiiight. You know NYC. You know reality. You know there's not a chance in hell NYPD Blue would give Peter Parker a pass.

But operating within the rules of the Comic Book universe, of COURSE it's completely plausible. There's aliens and living planets and planet-eating dudes in it! And oh yeah, it's FICTION. It doesn't HAVE to adhere to reality. Because people are MAKING IT UP.
 
What, I ask you, where the Romans DOING with the body between the time of death and the alleged evening? Are we to believe that it was just stored someplace for some unfathomable reason? To what end? To take pictures of it like Jesse James? Probably not, I'm guessing.

If the intention was to parade it around the Empire as a warning, like I said earlier, they would have just used the head. It would have been decapitated immediately after taking it off the cross. They did this all the time and it was the standard for political exeuctions.  And the body would have been burned with the other "refuse" (criminal corpses).

And again, if they REALLY wanted to piss off the Jews, they would have fed it to dogs.

I know it's ugly man. It's gruesome and it's sad and it's very anti-climactic, and please believe me when I say that I'm not telling you this s**t to get a rise out of you or disrespect your A#1 superguy. I literally look at the bible in the same way I look at harry Potter or any other work of fiction; it has absolutely no value to me beyond the harm that I perceive it doing, so I apologize if I come off as flippant when I talk about it.


I'm not a Christian and never have been (though I've read 4 different bibles front to back and read the Catholic bible twice), and when I first found about this stuff a few years back, even *I* was sickened and depressed about it. You'd kind of have to be a monster not to be. Because assuming Jesus was actually real, and assuming he wasn't even divine in any way, he certainly didn't deserve such an inglorious end if he was really spreading around all this warm huggy goodness that's attributed to him. 

I'm telling you this because it is what the overwhelming majority of historians and archeologists - REAL ones without an agenda, I might add (as in not the biased "historians" Christian websites like to point to; the ones who were Thelogians FIRST and then got into archeology in order to reach a very specific conclusion BEFORE analyzing the evidence) have concluded after untold lifetimes spent studying the practices of ancient Rome.

Now admittingly Jesus' specific execution is rarely, if ever, mentioned when historians are discussing the subject. And this is because, with the exception of the afore-mentioned "theological historians", there's not a lot of incentive to do so, given the utter lack of reliable data outside of the bible itself that would validate Jesus Christ as an actual historical figure (please don't bring up Tacitus).

When you're outside looking in, without the burden of a lifetime of religion on your shoulders, it's not hard to juxtapose the story against the backdrop of reality in ancient Roman archeology and quickly come to the conclusion that the pieces simply do not fit. Like, at all. Like, at ALL at all. In no way, shape, or form.

Like it or not (and who WOULD like it?), it's the way the Empire ran their s**t. It's what they did. It's how they operated. And they hung clay cocks over their doorways as fertility totems too. They were a wacky bunch of people.

You don't have to take my word for it, honest. I'm sure you know how to use google. All you have to do is stay away from any website with a Christian agenda stick to actual verifiable research and you can see that it's pretty unanimous outside of the pseudo-science and selective research for self-aggrandizement that goes on within the circles of your club.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 16, 2011, 12:35:52 AM
Dino you "think" she said something about dying? God either said it or he did not. She either told the talking snake about death or she did not
Genesis 3:3 and 3:4
Say it then before we have to go through this
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 12:58:31 AM
Genesis 3:3 and 3:4



Say it then before we have to go through this

Did not have a Bible hand at the time.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 01:15:32 AM
Raymond

I have read before what you said about the Romans and Jesus.

I have two questions regarding history.

How accurate do you regard history and in particular the details, not just the overall view. For example, I think Custer's Last Stand, which I think was promoted by his wife, changed after discoveries at the site were uncovered by a grass fire and the new evidence showed it was just the opposite in that Custer's men either froze on the spot or ran for their lives. However, that does not alter Custer and his men being wiped out by a collection of Indians.

Second question. Does history literature make any reference to the Bible.

Thanks in advance.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 04:12:26 AM
Another false analogy: it would be that Custer's Last Stand not only never happened, but the American Indians invented spray cheese.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 04:15:36 AM
Did not have a Bible hand at the time.

Noblesse Oblige (http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Bible%2C+online).

--J. "Yet I am Poor!  Because I am a RIVER to My People!" D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 04:39:10 AM
Did not have a Bible hand at the time.

Noblesse Oblige (http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Bible%2C+online).

--J. "Yet I am Poor!  Because I am a RIVER to My People!" D.

Never even thought of it.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dkit on January 16, 2011, 04:46:30 AM
Doctor X, that was freakin' cool! 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 05:24:37 AM
But that's irrelevant since it's pretty apparent everyone on this site is already very determined in their beliefs

Let' see...how can I put this?  Oh yeah: bullshit!

See, as atheists, we have no requirement to be "determined" in our beliefs.  We have no reason to accept the idea that stoutly clinging to a belief in the face of mountains of contrary facts is an act of heroism.  As a Christian, you do.  It's the theme of most of the famous Bible stories.  When Joshua's trying to figure out how to go about committing genocide on the people of Jericho without siege engines to defeat their vaunted fortifications, Yahweh's answer is: trumpets!  When Moses leads his people into a tactical debacle, pinning them against the sea as the Egyptian chariot brigades roll down on them, the Biblical solution is: stick your arms out and believe that Yahweh will make the water defy physics and open to let the Israelites through, then close up on the Egyptians when they try it.  And so on.  If you believe really, really hard in something, the more preposterous the better, you possess the heroic virtue of great faith.  And in doing so, you can (supposedly) make the Cosmos bend to your will (in the Name O' Jesus, of course). 

Most of us atheists here are of a scientific/rationalist bent, which means that, for us, being really "determined" to believe in something isn't a virtue, it's a vice we call "cognitive bias."  Furthermore, it doesn't take any effort or determination to accept a naturalistic world-view at all.  The universe and everything in it that we have actually found and documented behaves exactly as would be expected if there are no Invisible Magic Persons (gods, demons, angels, faeries, sprites, ghosts, djinn, kitsune, etc.) running around using supernatural powers.  No equation of physics needs to include a variable to account for the existence or actions of such beings in order to model the behavior of reality accurately.

We can look at a Hubble Telescope picture of a stellar nursery or a supernova remnant and say, "Oh, cool!"  As a Christian, you either have to just close your eyes and say, "La la la la laaaaa, I can't hear you!  The stars were all created 6,000 years ago and there aren't any more being born!" (fundamentalist) or you have to find a way to claim special divine inspiration for the Bible while admitting that it got pretty much everything it ever says about the Universe; its age, form, and operation completely wrong (liberal).  It takes quite a bit of "determination" to believe that magic is such a real, powerful, and dangerous force that forbidding its practice on pain of death as the Bible does is a rational policy while simultaneously knowing that people like David Copperfield and Chris Angel are crafting clever illusions and no one can really wield sorcery in blatant ways, like turning staffs into living serpents.

and it's obvious that many (not all) just have a blatant hate for religion/God in every way.

Can you provide evidence that this alleged blatant hate: A) exists; and B) is the reason many here do not accept Christianity?  It is, after all, possible to hate having cancer, and still accept the fact that you have it.

Claiming that Muhammad, Jesus, and Siddhartha are all made up is just ridiculous.

Maybe...  I'm not very familiar with the evidence for and against the existence of Mohammad and Siddartha.  To my knowledge, Mohammad left a nascent empire behind him after leading his troops in battle, so unless I learn of evidence that Muslim control of Saudi Arabia happened without him and he was invented later, I'm willing to credit his existence as a historical figure.  Did he fly to heaven on horseback or crack the Moon in half?  My guess is you would join me in being extremely skeptical of such claims.  WRT Siddartha, I don't know enough about India's history or the relevant historical evidence in favor of his existence or opposed.  As I understand it, a Buddhist could accept the non-historicity of Siddartha and still be a Buddhist, since it is the teachings rather than the man that are most important, and the teachings definitely exist, regardless of their origin.

When it comes to Jesus, I have studied that issue in greater depth, and I think there is quite a bit of strong evidence that "Jesus" was originally conceived of as a mystical figure, an intermediary between the divine and human realms, like the personified Wisdom in Judaism or the Logos in Greek spirituality.  The earliest Christian writings (the authentic epistles of Paul and other pre-Gospel NT epistles) speak of a heavenly Christ revealed through visions and interpretation of Scripture, and have nothing to say about a human man who recently walked the wilderness of Galilee.  The Gospels themselves are midrashic constructs, basically Hebrew Bible fanfic that reworks stories and passages from the Hebrew Bible to combine them into a "biography" of the Christ.  That this "biography" was not meant to be read as historical fact is evidenced by the way the various Gospel writers would move "events" in "Jesus' life" around to suit their themes, or create entirely different narrative contexts for a particular "saying of Jesus."  The Gospel authors did not write as people striving to create an accurate historical account of recent events.

Even if all these people were real that wouldn't make any of their religions true, but people feel the need to try and disprove their very existence because of their strong ill-will toward religion.

What's the connection here?  It's quite possible to have a lot of ill will toward Stalinism without having to believe that Stalin was a myth. 

This clearly marks someone who has lost all open-mindedness and true research and resorted to accepting and investigating anything that could even possibly show religion isn't true. It's not searching for the truth, it's just finding ways to claim God isn't the truth.

Again, it takes no effort on our part to live in a Universe without your god in it as a real being.  That's just the way reality is, whether we--or you--like it or not.  Believers have entire branches of theology dedicated to trying to explain why they live in a godless Universe.  See "theodicy" and "the hiddenness of God."  Some of us may take an interest, and try to figure out why people like you are so determined to believe in this stuff.  Some of us may think that religious beliefs are harmful, especially when adopted as national policy, or that, say, having one of the major political parties of the most powerful nation on Earth taken over by people who actively look forward to the destruction of the world is A Bad Thing. 

But we don't need to "find ways to claim God isn't the truth."  All it takes to do that is to live in a Universe that behaves solely according to generalized principles of physics (IOW: no magic/miracle) and which is not the Universe the Bible predicts.  Since we live in such a Universe and have no others we could move to if we wanted, we have it easy.  You're the ones who have to continually strive for faith and struggle to suppress doubt.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 05:29:11 AM
Doctor X, that was freakin' cool!

(http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/_rich__by_koffeeben.gif) Noblesse oblige (http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/snooty.gif)

--J.D.

P.S. (http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/cheerleader-sad.gif) But you gave me no respect. . . . (http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/waaaa.gif)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 16, 2011, 06:33:19 AM
But the Bible was wriiten for others to read. It is reasonable to assume that God had informed Adam and Eve what "death" was.
It is somewhat reasonable - as in "compatible with the text". It's just that it's also speculative - as in "not in the text". We might as well read Goethe's Faust, than speculate about what else the devil may have told Faust.
Since the bible was written for people to read, wouldn't it be "reasonable" to assume that everything deemed important by the author would have been put in there? Unless he screwed up, of course.


Quote
Also, if I remember correctly Eve had to be tempted by the serpent and resisted and I think she said someting about dieing etc.
Is it not "reasonable" to assume that if she did and still accepted, she was unqualified to make such a decision? More importantly, if she was to accept death in order to eat the apple, what of it? That still doesn't make it a sin. And if it did, how would she know?

God told her not to do it. She didn't know obeying was the right thing to do.
God told her what would happen. She didn't know those would be bad things.

This is a story about people being held accountable for what they did at a time where they did not and could not have had any concept of accountability.


Quote
Another point. Why did God put the forbidden fruit there as a temptation? That would indicate He needed a "test" to see if they would obey which would indicate He was not all powerful. Secondly, did he need an excuse so either he could change the world so as it would no longer be perfect or was it because He was a limited god and what He had created was imperfect from the start and He needed to cover that up.
I don't know. The text fails to answer those questions as far as I'm aware, especially in the light of other claims made in the bible which seem to directly contradict the notion that god is imperfect.
I will say that if the author of this particular piece of the bible wanted to make god all-knowing and all-powerful, he made a piss-poor job of it. In this he's far from alone though.


Quote
But either way that sounds like He knew the Bible would be written.
What?
That's not an admissible interpretation of any text. Characters do not act in order to look better to the target audience or influence them. Characters don't know anything. Authors make it appear so. And authors are well aware that they are writing for other people, which is reflected in their texts - with or without intent. There is nothing even vaguely surprising or special about that.
Do you know how easy it is to write a story with a character who seems to know that the story will be written? It's fucking trivial.

Besides, this is not even biblical, it's speculation on your part.



In short, you are again assuming that god exists and what he did or did not do rather based on what's consistent with the text, rather than interpreting the story as you would any other.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 06:49:47 AM

In short, you are again assuming that god exists and what he did or did not do rather based on what's consistent with the text, rather than interpreting the story as you would any other.

Does the text indicate God existed?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 07:12:40 AM
Does the text indicate God existed?

Which god?

I know . . . you cannot answer that question.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 16, 2011, 08:25:30 AM
Does the text indicate God existed?
It's not a meaningful question.
Does Star Wars indicate Vader existed? Yes, within the confines of fiction, which is bar any real-world interest unless we can find corroborating evidence. In recourse to reality? It may mean to, but that's hardly relevant. So no.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 08:37:16 AM
But Star Trek is teh r34lz!

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 16, 2011, 08:57:00 AM
Did not have a Bible hand at the time.

Noblesse Oblige (http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Bible%2C+online).

Never even thought of it.

Seriously?  Your defense is that you're stupid?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 09:07:16 AM
Did not have a Bible hand at the time.

Noblesse Oblige (http://lmgtfy.com/?q=Bible%2C+online).

Never even thought of it.

Seriously?  Your defense is that you're stupid?

(http://stuff.orly.ch/img/blog/zomg-you-ve-won-internet.gif)

And . . . of course, the thread.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 16, 2011, 10:04:37 AM
^^^And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc. I'm sure you have great ways to claim they're not true though! Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???



Modbreak:  removed nested quoting
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 16, 2011, 10:17:15 AM
Quote from: JT812
And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc.

JT812,

It seems to me that such an investigation would support, rather than contradict KCrady's post. It's understandable if you aren't up to a response, but you should admit to it, if that is the case.

In my time here, I've often found that fundamentalist-type theistic apologists, losing ground to an onslaught of reasonable objections and demonstrable contradictory evidence, latch onto a convenient explitive, or rude post, to excuse themselves from responses to the more substantive arguments.

Too often, "these two guys called me a name! I am leaving! Sorry I don't have time for a forum of meanies" occurs at just the right time. Thoughtful, clear arguments are left answered only by a generalized parthian shot.

I don't think it's fair.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 16, 2011, 10:34:17 AM
And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

I don't think I was being "jerky".  What Dinosaurs said really was pretty freakin' stupid: "I'm using the Internet right now, but I don't have ready access to a bible."  That's almost like saying that you're standing in a library but that you can't find any books.  Sheesh.

Quote
And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc.

Nope.  You make the claim, you back it up.  That's the way it works... we're not going to do your work for you, anymore than we would expect you to do our work for us.

Quote
I'm sure you have great ways to claim they're not true though! Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???

In fact, it usually is, but even so, you've got things backwards.  It's not that we presuppose a conclusion and cherry-pick evidence to support it -- that's what Christians do.  Atheists look at evidence and then draw conclusions from it.  That's why we're atheists.

By the way, I'm still waiting for you to respond to this:
http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17265.msg385165.html#msg385165 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17265.msg385165.html#msg385165)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: black ink on January 16, 2011, 10:45:05 AM
Noman Peopled:
Thank you for your reply, but I really want to know the point of view of Christians who think this way. It is the third time I read it here, I can still remember the first time by someone calling himself "reason". He (reason) also think that sickness and desease are caused by this "sin" thing, and he also blame it on everybody causing it. I wanted to join then, but I was too angry that I fear my first post would get me banned immediately. I'm glad one of you guys responded to him.

This time I hope JT812 can explain.

Danielos:
Thanks for the welcome.

Doc X:
Thanks also.
What is the meaning of "!!!!1!!!!!!ELEVENTY!"? I see it a lot of times here, but I don't understand it.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 16, 2011, 11:22:12 AM
Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???

No, you're just being a child at this point. Only an idiot would take historical writings to be true and trust them to be reliable. Unless, of course, they were backed up by actual facts, evidence, and research. This does not happen with nearly everything mentioned in the bible. The facts, evidence, and research regarding history shows that it's wrong, demonstrably so.

I realize that it may be difficult to grasp the concept, but the reason we don't believe the historical information is true has nothing to do with it being in the bible. It has to do with it being wrong.

As for telling us to google this stuff, we have. It's your job as the one making the claim to present your own evidence. I guarantee that myself and many of the others have been through all of this "evidence" many, many times. That's why your half-assed attempts at trying to prove the bible aren't taken seriously. Because it's been done and been presented better, by Christians who knew this stuff way better than you do. And the evidence was just as weak then, as it is now.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: rev45 on January 16, 2011, 11:37:32 AM
And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc. I'm sure you have great ways to claim they're not true though! Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???
What extra-biblical accounts?  You mean the ones that bertatberts completely refutes in replies 235 and 236?  It's a long read so you might want to set some time aside to read it.
http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php?topic=13232.210 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php?topic=13232.210)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 16, 2011, 12:04:00 PM
I think we should avoid acting as jerks as much as possible. We should welcome theists to participate here because without them it would only be a discussion among atheists and not an inspired and intellectually stimulating debate. And who knows, if we manage to be convincing enough we may actually deconvert a few...

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jedweber on January 16, 2011, 12:44:50 PM
Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???

I've heard this charge from apologists many times, and it always annoys me.  As Alzael said, it's ridiculous. Objective historians DON'T automatically trust other sources as true and reliable, and make a special exception for the Bible. All sources need to be examined critically. Even if we accept that they have actual knowledge of an event, and likely contain some truth, we still must take into account the motives and agenda of the author, and the circumstances under which it was written. We may accept some of its claims and not others (especially supernatural ones.)

For example, historians may accept that Josephus was involved in the Jewish War and accurately described many of its aspects. (which are confirmed to some extent by other evidence.)  However, no one today takes seriously his claim that the Emperor Vespasian was the Jewish messiah foretold in the scriptures. (We might chalk this up to him being a Jew who sided with the Romans and had to appease his Roman patrons in his writings.)

Christian apologists would never accept such an approach to the Bible. They don't accept critical evaluation, if it leads to a conclusion that one part may be true and another is likely to be invented or mythologized. They start out with the assumption that the Bible is inerrant and infallible. No good historian would ever approach any source that way. So in fact, it's apologists who want us to treat the Bible differently from all other sources.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 16, 2011, 01:10:32 PM
JT 812 - You are getting your ass handed to you ......because you assert without evidence,claim without facts and pretty much have to bulshit in order to keep up you resort to whining ?

Modbreak:  removed nested quoting
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 16, 2011, 01:20:20 PM
How do you think Jt 812 the Japanese history taught in Japanese schools differs from the history taught in American schools in reference to WW2? How about if the original inhabitants of North America wrote the history books? And the REAL history of North America were told?

 You are what you have been taught from an early age maybe? Are you as naive as you seem? There are mountains of contrary to any and all religions,but because a few people of any faith get together and write THEIR version of history does not make it the correct version.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 01:27:49 PM
And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

(http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u264/DoctorX_photos/FAIL/ceef9414.jpg)

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 16, 2011, 01:34:20 PM
Quote
And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc. I'm sure you have great ways to claim they're not true though! Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???

Not trying to be a jerk, but you are pleading persecution and then focusing on what you want to address only. Don't be a crybaby if people joke around, and address the points of the debate, or else people will not take you seriously anymore.

Also, the proper way to treat a historical text is to take historical text and treat them critically, keeping in mind who we think wrote it, if it is internally consistent, what other texts say about the same subject, in what kind of cultural environment the writer lived, what the writers agenda probably was, if what has survived is a translation or is in the original language, if passages have been quoted elsewhere, etc. etc et. This method must be used for the bible as well if you want to draw historical conclusions from it.

What you do not do is say "This book says it is the word of god, and I am going to believe that because the book says so, and because doing so makes me feel good" which is the method of critical analysis that you seem to be proposing.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 01:38:13 PM
What is the meaning of "!!!!1!!!!!!ELEVENTY!"? I see it a lot of times here, but I don't understand it.

From those who hit their key board with unnecessary excitement, often forgetting whether or not they have engaged the "Shift" key.  As demonstrated Here (http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/posting).

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 16, 2011, 01:58:13 PM
Dino, still no response? You have not yet addressed or conceded the point that you have no reason to believe in a god other than your desire to do so? Are you just going to avoid the issue and only address what you want to address?

It can be difficult to realize that a hitherto treasured position is untenable. It took me three days of struggling before I gave up my agnosticism and vague pantheism. But when the logical conclusion stares you in the face, you can either admit it or lie to yourself.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 16, 2011, 03:28:45 PM
JT812,

This is now two dramatic exits you have made.  Is it gonna stick this time? "You guys are being jerks!", "just google it, you'll see!". Are you serious?  This is becoming painful to watch.  If you don't have anything to back up your position, just bow out GRACEFULLY. Because right now, youre embarrassing yourself.

Again, and this goes for Dinosaurs also, you are a christian because you lived in a time and a place where xtianity predominated.  From an early age, you were told to believe this.  You were met with signs of approval when you talked about this "Jesus" or "god" and learned to associate "god" with "good", "christianity" with " moral".  When you went to church or talked about "Jesus" you got positive feedback.  The christians were always the "good" people.

Bu it was predicated on bullshit.  It's a cult, nothing more.  It's all just cultural superstitions.  There is nothing that separates Christianity from any other primitive belief system.  There is nothing especially unique about how christians believe you get to an afterlife of happiness.  In fact the xtian bible is sort of all over the place about it.  You just like to pick out the parts you like about heaven and go with it. 

There is nothing unique about how christians were persecuted or died for their beliefs.  And there is no evidence, none, that any apostles or other potential eyewitnesses died in such a way.  So, people dying for xtianity are no different than anyone else who have died for their delusional beliefs.

Again, the emperor has no clothes.  It's a myth.  A large scale cult.  And it's time for you to move on.  Stop with the whole "you guys are just being mean to me!" defense and come to your senses.  This has become tiresome. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 03:51:11 PM
Dino, still no response? You have not yet addressed or conceded the point that you have no reason to believe in a god other than your desire to do so? Are you just going to avoid the issue and only address what you want to address?

It can be difficult to realize that a hitherto treasured position is untenable. It took me three days of struggling before I gave up my agnosticism and vague pantheism. But when the logical conclusion stares you in the face, you can either admit it or lie to yourself.

Its on How to do Adherents Explain Evolution thread
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 16, 2011, 03:51:52 PM
Maybe they don´t have time to be online here 24 hours a day. Give them a break...
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 16, 2011, 03:57:25 PM
Danny....he has said he is not coming back twice now
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 16, 2011, 04:01:43 PM
Danny....he has said he is not coming back twice now

Well, Dinosaurs is online here now. Maybe he has done some Christian homework...  ;)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 04:02:28 PM
JT812,


Again, and this goes for Dinosaurs also, you are a christian because you lived in a time and a place where xtianity predominated.  From an early age, you were told to believe this.  You were met with signs of approval when you talked about this "Jesus" or "god" and learned to associate "god" with "good", "christianity" with " moral".  When you went to church or talked about "Jesus" you got positive feedback.  The christians were always the "good" people.


I went to a Catholic school. At age 15 I bought Darwin's book with my pocket money. My father told me when I turned 16 he and my mother would no longer make it compulsory for me to go to Sunday Mass. He also said he did not give a fuck but my mother wanted age 16. My father was not real big on religion but he was a motor mechanic and used to get a lot of work from the get togethers outside the church after Mass.

From about age 20 to age 32  I was atheist. The only times I have been to a church since I was 16 was weddings and funerals. Thats 46 years ;D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 16, 2011, 04:23:41 PM
Raymond

I have read before what you said about the Romans and Jesus.

I have two questions regarding history.

How accurate do you regard history and in particular the details, not just the overall view. For example, I think Custer's Last Stand, which I think was promoted by his wife, changed after discoveries at the site were uncovered by a grass fire and the new evidence showed it was just the opposite in that Custer's men either froze on the spot or ran for their lives. However, that does not alter Custer and his men being wiped out by a collection of Indians.

Well, I hear what you're saying. And it's kinda frustrating, you know? Before the invention of the camera really, all of history is pretty much heresay of one form or another... "Written by the men who held the pens" and all that. So there's always the philosophical conundrum of, you know... How accurate can anyone ever REALLY get?

The more well-documented it is, and the more different sources that can testify to the accuracy of a given record, I think the more stock we can put in it... But yeah, from a philosophical standpoint, we can't ever *REALLY* know for sure for sure for sure.

So what choice do we have but to simply gather the best information we can and try to put together the pieces as best we're able? The alternative is just to ignore history altogether, which obviously nobody in their right mind would want to do.

But some stories, people, etc. are more verifiable than others. For example, I often hear theists counter Jesus' questionable historical existance by asking something along the lines of "Well, how can you know George Washington really existed?"

But I don't think that's fair. There's all kinds of records of Washington, from different sources completely removed from each other... Over the course of entire lifetimes. First hand accounts by other people who knew him. We have a grave, and a body, and writings from the man... We have his "supposed" signature, the house he lived in... And all the facts check out and so forth. So it's not really comparable.

Especially since nobody ever claimed anything terribly fantastic or supernatural about Washington.

Unfortunately, the further back you go in time, the more questionable the records become generally speaking.

Now when it comes to Jesus, I'm playing devil's advocate when I bring up the lack of evidence for his physical existance. As I said, I've never been a Christian, and I have no vested interest in proving the point, but I always assume, for the sake of arguement if nothing else, that at the least there was probably a preacher by that name wandering around ancient Palastine. I think that's more or less a safe bet, if for no other reason than it was a pretty common name from what I understand.

But I gotta tell you, being an unbiased observer to the story, it always struck me that the Jesus of the bible, even if completely mundane and non-supernatural, was an amalgamation of different characters. I think that explains some of the, for lack of a better term, odd behavioral differences from chapter to chapter... Like the smiting of an innocent fig tree. That just didn't seem very Jesus-ly to me.

The fig tree story, among others, seems to me much more likely to be a parable or something that they just attached to Jesus to give the story some weight. The guy is pretty damn enlightened in most of the other stories... Seems REALLY weird that he'd suddenly get pissed off that a tree wasn't blooming out of season and that he'd curse it as a response.

And if you buy that he was a god, or the son of one or whatever, I mean, come on... All the more reason he'd know that it's not the tree's fault that it's not fruit-bearing season.

What I'm saying is, I think the historical Jesus, if he actually existed, was kind of smudged into a composite of different individuals and parables when they put the bible together a few centuries later, as a vehicle for the different rabbi's to squeeze in ALLLL the lessons they wanted to include without having to rely on less substantive characters.

Sorry, kind of going of on a tangent here... Trying to illustrate that Jesus was dead and gone by the time the bible was written... Whatever you believe: Never existed, was just some guy, or was a super-powered engine of rightous street justice with an irrational spite towards fig trees.

Point is, when it comes to history, especially history that goes THAT far back, we just kinda have to go with the best information we have. Unfortunately for all of us... There's precious little for the events in the bible.

But for the stuff we CAN say we "know" (with at least a reasonable amount of certainty - like that Napolean was a dick, for example lol) ...We have to be open-minded enough to accept revisions as more information becomes available, or new theories are introduced to the scene.

When I was in highschool about 10 years ago, my history teacher told us the number one reason for Custer's loss was because he was impatient... Apparently there was a contingent of soldiers a day or two's ride behind him that were packing 3 or 4 gatling guns among their supplies... If the guy had waited a few days... Different story.

The stuff about his men freezing to death... Never heard that before, but if that's what the modern consensus is, and if that's what genuine historians and archeologists are saying, I'm inclined to modify my understanding of the situation. To do otherwise, I think I'd be being dishonest with myself for the sake of my own gratification.

But I'll tell you this right now: I don't care WHO says it, Pluto is a goddamn PLANET in my book. And I'm always going to call it one lol.  ;D

Oh. And somebody once tried to tell me that John Wayne was gay. Can you believe that crap? But I don't care. I could see a picture of the Duke in drag driving a rainbow-colored Scion and I STILL wouldn't buy it.

I'm selective sometimes. Probably a good thing I'm not an actual historian lmao.  :laugh:
Second question. Does history literature make any reference to the Bible.

Thanks in advance.

Well, sure it does. All over the place, starting after the bible's creation in... what was it? The 3rd century? When Constantine had the council put it all together.

But there's really no contemporary documentation of most biblical stories or even of Jesus... Aside from a very few guys like Tacitus, that have always been shown to either be forgeries or what not.

That's one of the biggest clinchers for me, considering how spectacular most of the stories are. I mean, after Jesus rose from the dead (quite a claim in itself obviously), the story goes on to say that the dead rose from the grave and started walking around Jerusalem (it WAS Jerusalem, right? Correct me if I'm wrong.)

Now that seems to me to be something of serious historical worth. I just can't accept that something like that would happen, and not become a concrete documented occurance by every historian of the day. s**t, it makes the murder of Julius Caeser seem absolutely insignificant by comparison!

Or even further back... ALL the first-born of Egypt keeling over dead in the OT... There's no WAY I can accept that such a thing happened, divinely-mandated or not, and it didn't make it into *any* Egyptian records. We can find all kinds of conclusive evidence about who King Tut's grandparents were, and even the names of some of their slaves... What they liked to eat and the games they played for fun in their down-time...

But no reacord of an ENTIRE generation being wiped out down to the last kid? That is one HUGE pill to swallow, just speaking for myself personally.

Anyway, at the end of the day, who really knows, right? History's a mystery. I'm critical and skeptical about almost any historical occurance unless I can find a ton of evidence to support a particular set of facts. If that's not available, the only choice I think I have is just to take the information that's available and try to process the most likely Truth. And that's the best I can do.

And you know, it really pisses me off, too, if I can be honest... That history, and especially ancient history, is so damn murky. Doubly so that it's murky because of centuries of cultures conquering OTHER cultures and burning their libraries, or individual ancient historians with an agenda writing up the "facts" of a person place or thing with bias.

I don't believe in "sin" at all, obviously, not being a Christian... but I think if there were such a thing, where you could do *wrong* to the universe or to humanity as a singular entity... maaaan... fucking with history would be one of the worst. What greater crime can you commit than falsifying our history? You're literally pissing on the legacy of man.

And if we don't know for absolute certain where we've been, how the hell can we know for absolute certain where we're going?

Meh. Apologies for going on about it so long. Hopefully I answered the questions. Just had to get some of that stuff off my chest since ya put the questions in the old thought-box.  :)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Danielos on January 16, 2011, 04:41:10 PM
I went to a Catholic school. At age 15 I bought Darwin's book with my pocket money. My father told me when I turned 16 he and my mother would no longer make it compulsory for me to go to Sunday Mass. He also said he did not give a fuck but my mother wanted age 16. My father was not real big on religion but he was a motor mechanic and used to get a lot of work from the get togethers outside the church after Mass.

From about age 20 to age 32  I was atheist. The only times I have been to a church since I was 16 was weddings and funerals. Thats 46 years ;D

Interesting... So you converted from atheism to Christianity? What convinced you that the Christian God is real?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 04:49:00 PM
Many thanks Raymond.

I think with Custer they say a lot of the men froze on the spot with fear because a lot of the guns were loaded, single shot, one in the breech.

As an aside, how often have you seen a news article whereby you have direct knowledge on the subject and know the news article is leaving a lot out of the story.

In the case of Jesus do you think it is possible that historians deliberately left him out for polictical, religious or similar reasons. I am a very keen gun owner and Australia is very anti gun both gov't and media. Things I read, including would would count now for short history, leaves a real lot out and what is left out is the product of an anti gun gov't/media. Could this also apply to history not documenting other big "miracle" events back in days of old.

Given there was no TV/Radio in those days to spread the message I find it amazing that Christianity and later Islam got going in such a big way. It just seems to me that something big must of happened.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 05:09:10 PM

Interesting... So you converted from atheism to Christianity? What convinced you that the Christian God is real?

Well I did not revert to being a Christian as such. I basically dumped that at age 15. But I am a believer in a supernatural but I don't completely discount the Bible/God. I have a few boxes I can tick for what I am and I swing around a lot with them.

With the move from atheism that started to take some hold when i was about 28. Don't really know why. But it is fair to say my atheism was not real overpowering. In other words if we had internet forums back then i would not of been on a forum sprouting the cause for atheism

But what pulled me over the line in 1980, when I was 32, was with my insurance business i started doing business with medical specialists. Naturally enough when you are taking about life and disability insurance then if at least one of you has some interest in this topic then it surfaces and I always had the interest. Well, the medical specialists in many cases were religious and up to and including "born again" In Australia the private practice medical specialist is the top IQ and the highest education in the land. Non stop from age 18 to around age 35. But to cut a long story short when I queried several of them they answered along the lines of....you can't do this job and leave work without knowing there is something there pulling strings. The ones that were "born agains" were not church affiliated in fact against churches as is the case with many "born again" Australia. That was important because that removed the issues pf church influence since so many hospitals are church owned.

One insurance client I have is Director of Emergency Medicine in one of our major hospitals. Wait for it. He runs Bible class once a week from his home.

Now you may think it is strange that at this level of education that you have people at the "born again" level and that includes the 6000 year old earth. However, as I have previously posted if someone’s starting point is God existed then Noah'a Ark and all the rest is not an issue.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 05:51:49 PM
And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

My sig quote says it all.

And for the many posts I don't have time to respond to specifically to, google extra-biblical accounts of Bible, Jesus, crucifixion, etc. I'm sure you have great ways to claim they're not true though! Because normally you would take historical writings to be true and trust them as reliable, but if it talks about the Bible then it's obvious even the historical information is made up!! Right? Right???

So I take it you believe that Ramses II singlehandedly defeated the Hittite army at the Battle of Qadesh thanks to the supernatural intervention of Amun-Re because there's a historical account of the event carved in stone on a massive temple pylon at Karnak?  Do you believe that Achilles was magically invulnerable except for his heel because he is a main figure in a historical account of the siege of Troy?  Since archaeologists have famously found Troy, as well as the tomb of King Agamemnon (another major figure in the events of the Iliad), we now have historical proof for the existence of the Greek pantheon (Athena, Zeus, Apollo, Hera, etc.), right?  Or do you...maybe...you know...read a historical account critically, especially when it's making supernatural claims instead of "taking it to be true?"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 16, 2011, 06:50:54 PM
Dinosaurs,
Are you serious?  THAT is your "personal experience" that makes you follow christianity?  I thought you were gonna talk about some nonsensical "miracle" you experienced, or maybe that you had turned your life around and stopped doing drugs or something because of your beliefs.  But all you have is a straight up appeal to authority???  And a false one at that.

"False" for several reasons.  First and foremost, the data doesn't back it up.  In one study, physicians were twice as likely to cope with major problems in life without relying on a god (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1490160/ (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1490160/)).  And I can tell you from MY personal experience (I'm a physician) that the majority of us DON'T believe the bible is a true story.  Outside of the topic of medicine, physicians essentially have the same thoughts on things as anyone else.

Which brings up the other reason why it's a flawed appeal to authority.  Why the hell would physicians know more about this than anyone else?  At least in the US, there's nothing in the med school curriculum dealing with biblical study.  I would be willing to bet in Australia it's no different.  (By the way, what you said about Australian physicians going from 18 to 35 is flat out NOT true.  Their education lasts no longer than here in the US).  Why do you think doctors would know more about a "god" than anyone else?  If you're saying it's because doctors have higher IQs, then what follows is that MY opinion (as a physician) counts more than YOURS because I apparently have a higher IQ.  I'm just using your reasoning.

From the way you're describing it, you were never really "atheist" at all.  You just sort of stopped giving a crap about xtianity as a teenager.  Then you met some people who you thought were smart and when you heard they were xtian, you just jumped right back into it.  Is that seriously how you determine your beliefs?  "This guy's smart, I'm just gonna believe what he does."? 

You like appeals to authority?  Google "Project Steve" and see what you think.

Form your OWN opinions on god beliefs, dont just do it based on what doctors think (or what hou seem to think that they think).  Trust them on medical matters.  I can tell you as a physician myself, there is nothing in the medical school curriculum that gives us advanced insight into whether or not invisible beings in the sky exist.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 16, 2011, 06:59:48 PM
And dinosaurs, when I was talking about you being born in a time and place where christianity predominated, I wasn't just referring to your mother and father.  I was talking about the culture around you.  Had you been born and raised in Kandahar, you would have been steered towards Islam by those high-IQ doctors you met.  Had you been born in Athens in the 5th century, the real "high-IQ" type would have, wait for it, been convincing you that a guy in a flaming chariot was riding across the sky every day. 

Again, what about christianity sets it apart from all other primitive mythologies, aside from it being what you were brought up to believe in the culture around you, and of course by some high-IQ doctors around you?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 07:05:40 PM
What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof.

Proof is for mathematicians and makers of whiskey.  What we want before being convinced of something is evidence.  Why?  Because "evidence" is that which indicates that the thing we're considering believing has anything to do with reality.  This isn't "closed-minded," it's just good mental hygiene.  You don't really believe every claim anybody makes do you?  If you get an email from someone claiming to be a Nigerian prince who will give you a million dollars if you send him your bank account information so he can use it to transfer his money out of Nigeria before a corrupt government gets it, so he can use it to Feed The Children, do you just fork over the information?

If so, please let me know.  I have this bridge I'm looking to sell--prime location, a main commuter route into Manhattan Island.  Trust me, it's a great deal.  Plus, if you order now, your penis will grow by an inch! 

We are both in the same situation to start with, that is, neither of us knows the answer. Equally, I am close minded to the need to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked before I go with something.

Strawman.  We don't need "to get every piece of evidence and all the boxes ticked" before we "go with something."  What we do, is look at the evidence we do have, make our best effort at an unbiased probabilistic estimate of what this says about reality, and go with that.  And perhaps most importantly, remain willing to change our model of reality in the face of new evidence or counter-evidence.  When it comes to such things as talking snakes and global floods which fail to interrupt the construction of the Pyramid of Saqqara and real, live, sticks-to-serpents sorcery, the evidence we have now is quite sufficient to reduce the probability of such things asymptotically toward zero.  But hey, maybe you can show us something we don't already know.  Maybe somebody will invent a perpetual motion machine tomorrow and we'll have to completely overhaul our understanding of physics.  But...don't bet on it.  <---note the statement of estimated probability, rather than dogmatic certainty.
 
I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof.

OK, that sort of atheist would be consistent.  One who demanded high standards of critical thought WRT Christianity while accepting the validity of homeopathy without question would be a hypocrite.  Is that what you're getting at?

The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.

You're bypassing the ultimate issue here: what is real, and how do we know?  Either there is an actual reality, or there isn't.  If there isn't, then we're living in a solipsistic universe (or at least I am; the rest of you are figments of my imagination), and I suppose I can make up whatever l like and it becomes real.  If there is an actual reality, then whether we choose to apply critical thought (make our beliefs "pay their way" with evidence) or not has nothing to do with what is real.  If I say, "Well, I like the idea of flying saucers, so when it comes to flying saucers, I am going to accept and also act with far less evidence, so that means that 'flying saucers exist' is a default position for me," that does absolutely nothing to increase the probability that flying saucers actually exist.

What you're really saying here is "We religious/spiritual people don't give a damn about what's actually real or true.  We'll just decide to avoid looking too hard for truth in case our cherished beliefs should turn out to be false, and call our willful refusal to seek evidence a 'default position.'  'Cause wishing our religion is true makes it so, right?"

But they/we/me don't accept everything. For example, myself and many others see churches or formal religions as just man made.

But why don't you accept everything?  On what basis do you choose which things to examine critically and which things to just accept?  Personal preference?  I hope you're not in any position which entails responsibility for other lives (pilot, doctor, engineer, etc.).  "I don't want to believe this little kid could have cancer, so I won't bother to do a biopsy on the tumor.  Plus it'll save her mom and dad the cost of the biopsy!"

Many of us will also have different view points at the same time. That may at first seem like a contradiction but it is not. Our one consistent belief is the answer is some being or beings.

"The answer" has just gotta be some kind of magical human person, it's just gotta!  Well, why?  I mean, other than the fact that it would be awfully nice if we could use our social intelligence to negotiate, appease, beg, and cajole the Universe into doing what we'd like the way we can with other human beings.  As evolved social primates, we have a much greater degree of "social intelligence" for relating to other primates like ourselves (finding mates, appeasing the more powerful, dominating the less powerful, making alliances and deals, etc.) than the kind of intelligence we need to relate to a non-personal, naturalistic Universe.  It's much easier to become the most popular kid in school than it is to master calculus.  Not because the former is actually easier than the latter (ask anyone in the field of artificial intelligence--getting a computer to do calculus is much, much easier); it's because we have much better brain hardware for social intelligence than for higher mathematics.

That is the starting pont if you like. Just as your starting point is no beings of any type provide the answer. But sometimes you might think there is only one universe at other times your view could be there are many universes.

You're assuming that whatever arbitrary "starting point" we might choose actually matters when it comes to figuring out what is real.  Reality is what it is regardless of what cognitive procedures we adopt (unless solipsism is true, O figment of my imagination).  The only question is, will our cognitive procedures, our chosen starting point, etc. work to help provide us with an accurate model of reality?  I, for one, would never want to get heart surgery from someone who thought they could pick whatever "starting point" for the process they liked.

Both sides also have their own bias in how they see evidence.

Yes, but the evidence itself, if it is genuine evidence of what reality is doing, isn't biased.  It just is.  A quasar 10 billion light-years away is a quasar 10 billion light-years away.  It has no "bias" against the notion that the Universe was created some time after the Sumerians invented beer.  It's just.  A quasar.  10 billion light-years away.  Which means: it look the light ten billion years to get here from there.

So the question is, having admitted that we all have biases, what do we do?  Do we just enshrine our biases as beyond question and use them as our criteria for deciding what is real?  Or do we try to develop methodologies we can use to overcome and correct for our biases, so that we can asymptotically approach the most accurate possible model of reality?  Most of us atheist/rationalist/skeptic types here would agree with the latter position, and point to things like the scientific method, logic, and reason as methods that generally work pretty well, and tend to self-correct over time.  We have pretty much everything humans have ever come to understand about reality (all of which is Not Magic, BTW) as our evidence that these methods work. 

What evidence does any religious/spiritual person have that any religious/spiritual method actually works for the purpose of discovering and understanding religious/spiritual reality (assuming such a thing exists)?  Go back a thousand years: every culture had its very own cosmology.  For some, Earth rested at the center of a set of concentric crystalline spheres which held the Sun and planets.  For others, it sat on the back of four elephants, which stood on the back of a turtle.[1]  And so on.  Then science came along, and we set about systematically observing the Cosmos and testing our models of reality against the evidence of the Cosmos itself.  Lo, and behold!  Today, people from all those disparate cultures can agree on a single cosmology: heliocentric solar system, elliptical planetary orbits, Big Bang theory--despite whatever preferences they might have had for their pre-scientific native cosmologies. 

Now look at the realm of religion and spirituality: still at the "turtles" stage, where every culture has at least one, maybe even dozens or hundreds, of religions; and within each religion, a bevy of mutually-antagonistic sects, each certain the others are Vile Heretics.  Come up with a methodology that enables Christian and Muslim and Hindu theologians/mystics/clergy/whatever to sit down and determine to their mutual agreement which, if any of them, is right despite the biases they all bring to the table, and we'll talk.  Until then, you're all just making up whatever you like and pretending it's true.
 1. What did the turtle stand on?  Another turtle.  It's turtles all the way down.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 08:16:46 PM
And the true nature of this site comes out... Whoever can be the biggest jerk wins!  ;D

My sig quote says it all.


That is funny ;D

Modbreak:  fixed quote
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 08:36:25 PM
This the key point. As a "type" we don't need the same amount of evidence as you need and we don't collect the evidence for reproduction at any time.

Why do you care less if your religious/spiritual beliefs are true, than you care about, say, whether a used car salesman is telling you the truth about the working condition of an automobile?[1]

But what we believe has a degree of it "feels right and looks right".

What "feels right and looks right" is basically another way of saying, "our cognitive biases."  You've already admitted that people have biases that can color their perceptions.  People also have different ideas on what "feels right and looks right."  Just ask any religious/spiritual person who believes in a different religion than yours.  So how would you go about trying to find out if something actually is right (i.e., in accord with reality)?

Likewise, I don't know with 100% certainty that God or a god or gods etc. exist or existed.

But for me it seems more likely that God or gods are the solution to how all this got here.

On what basis?  And since God or gods are likely to be much more complex (greater intelligence, capabilities, etc.) than human beings or "all this," how did the God or gods get there?

One thing that often crossed my mind is that if we had another sense then the answer could be obvious. Imagine if you will that human life becomes extinct on earth and a bunch of very advanced aliens arrive. However, these aliens have possesed th sense of sight. Could you imagine the difficulties they would have with windows in buildings and cars. Why did these earthlings make all these structures weaker with this material etc

Since the aliens are "really advanced," and they're capable of interstellar travel, they would almost certainly have instruments that can detect light even if they don't have eyes or any equivalent on their bodies.  Just like we have radio telescopes that can pick up radio waves, X-ray telescopes that can detect X-rays, gravimetric sensors that can detect distortions in gravitational fields, etc., the aliens would have instruments that can detect light and translate it into sonar signals or whatever they use.  With these instruments, they could tell, after some investigation and experimentation, that the weaker structures were light-permeable, and from that deduce that the creatures who built them had naturally evolved light sensing ability.  They might even be able to deduce this from the fact that we lived on a planet with a light-permeable sky (so that light-sensing would be useful in an evolutionary context), whereas they evolved on, say, a place like Europa, under an all-covering sheet of ice so that there was no light in their environment to see. 

In the same way, we could deduce that life on Europa would probably use echolocation or some other form of sense modalities than light-detection.  They might be able to detect Jupiter's powerful magnetic field.  So if we discovered odd magnetic coils as part of structures on Europa, we could measure the local distortions they caused in Jupiter's magnetic field and have a fairly decent chance of deducing their function, or at least that their creators were able to sense magnetic fields.

OK. You know Apollo 11 landed on the moon. How do you know that. What real evidence do you have except what you have read or seen on TV etc.

But you are 100% certain Apollo 11 went to the moon but with zero real evidence.

What do you mean, "zero evidence?"  There are Moon rocks in the Smithsonian!  Then, let's see...there's the tens or hundreds of thousands of people who worked on the Apollo project including a couple guys named "Buzz Aldrin" and "Neil Armstrong."  Anybody with a high-school education in mathematics and the willingness to put forth the effort can do the calculations that will show that the Saturn V rocket was capable of bringing the astronauts to the Moon and back.  You can go--again, to the Smithsonian, and see the re-entry capsule the astronauts returned to Earth in.  There's all the TV footage.  There's the fact that the Russians, with whom we were in a "space race" at the time, and who had their own space program and tracking systems, didn't call foul.  And so on.  All kinds of evidence.

What's the evidence for the huge conspiracy that would require the absolute, 100% complicity and cooperation of millions of people (including Soviet enemies who would have had much to gain from humiliating the U.S. if they exposed the fraud) both at the time and since? 

You are 100% certain because it all seems possible and there is no way you could see a conspiracy being pulled off.

Well, let's say 99.9999% certain.  Or at least "I think there's much more evidence that Apollo 11 landed on the Moon than there is for a Giant Moonbat Conspiracy to fake it."  But heck, we could all be brains in jars.   :o

But to a "moon landing hoax" person you are totally close minded.

Me: *points at Moon rock in the Smithsonian*  "Moon rock."

Conspiracy theorist: "You closed-minded dogmatist!"

What you are failing to grasp with this topic is as I have already posted and that is how different people see "evidence"

So, there's no such thing as actual evidence, since reality is whatever we think it is, right?  Brilliant!  Then I take it you'll buy my bridge?  I'll sell it to you for $10,000.  A steal!  You could put up toll booths on it and make that back in a day!  So, whaddaya say?  You're not gonna go and ask for any sort of proof that I actually own the Brooklyn Bridge, are ya?  That would mean you're closed-minded.

From my perspective it is impossible to understand how you can so clearly eliminate a superior being or beings from the equation.

Because the...you know...actual equations can model the behavior of our Cosmos from the scale of billions of light years down to the probability functions of sub-atomic particles, and do it accurately, without needing to include any variables to account for the existence and/or action of any Invisible Magic Persons.

Edit: Oh yeah: WRT the evidence for the Moon landing, one of the things that the astronauts did while they were there was put up a reflector, so that people on Earth could bounce lasers off of it and use that to precisely measure the distance between the Earth and the Moon.  So, anybody with the right equipment and skill can bounce a laser off that reflector right now, today.  Russia, China, Richard Hoagland, anybody.
 1. "Yes, I'd like a test-drive.  And my friend here is a mechanic, mind if we take a look under the hood?"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 08:53:12 PM
Dinosaurs,
Are you serious?  THAT is your "personal experience" that makes you follow christianity?  I thought you were gonna talk about some nonsensical "miracle" you experienced, or maybe that you had turned your life around and stopped doing drugs or something because of your beliefs.  But all you have is a straight up appeal to authority???  And a false one at that.


Are you serious that you need every single thing fucking written out for you.

I said the medicos pulled me over the line. Someone compares two cars in great depth and picks one to buy. His mate says "which car have you decided to buy" and he replies "the xyx car, it was colour that pulled me over the line. His mate says "so they were that close"



"False" for several reasons.  First and foremost, the data doesn't back it up.  In one study, physicians were twice as likely to cope with major problems in life without relying on a god


Please be specific. Physicians is a term used in America that covers all doctors. I specified medical specialists in private practice



And I can tell you from MY personal experience  (I'm a physician) that the majority of us DON'T believe the bible is a true story.  Outside of the topic of medicine, physicians essentially have the same thoughts on things as anyone else.



Dinosaurs,
Are you serious?  THAT is your "personal experience"


(By the way, what you said about Australian physicians going from 18 to 35 is flat out NOT true.  Their education lasts no longer than here in the US). 


MBBS by age 25. FRACS, FRACP..do want me to keep going?  They will get to accredited medical registrar by around age 29 and FRACS etc about age 33 to 35.

MBBS is the general practitioner. Please at least attempt to have some accuracy on something you should know about.


From the way you're describing it, you were never really "atheist" at all.  You just sort of stopped giving a crap about xtianity as a teenager.  Then you met some people who you thought were smart and when you heard they were xtian, you just jumped right back into it.  Is that seriously how you determine your beliefs?  "This guy's smart, I'm just gonna believe what he does."? 

No, I said I was on the way around age 28, the medicos were 4 years later above.

I did not say I jumped back in. I said "Well I did not revert to being a Christian as such"

Please try and read postings correctly. What could help you is to paste the post under where you are posting


You like appeals to authority?  Google "Project Steve" and see what you think.


“authority is the police, gov’t, your boss if employed and so on.



Form your OWN opinions on god beliefs, dont just do it based on what doctors think (or what hou seem to think that they think).  Trust them on medical matters.  I can tell you as a physician myself, there is nothing in the medical school curriculum that gives us advanced insight into whether or not invisible beings in the sky exist.


I will repeat again, at 28 I was on the way out of atheism and 32 the medical specialists pulled me over the line.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 16, 2011, 09:01:49 PM
I think we should avoid acting as jerks as much as possible. We should welcome theists to participate here because without them it would only be a discussion among atheists and not an inspired and intellectually stimulating debate. And who knows, if we manage to be convincing enough we may actually deconvert a few...

Don't underestimate the value of being a jerk sometimes. You'd be surprised at how often the thing that most gets through to a person is a smack upside the head, and a "What are you, an idiot?" And there are more people than you'd think who deconvert (eventually) from sites like this. It just isn't usually the ones like JT812. They're usually too far gone into the delusion. The ones that will be deconverted are the ones who lurk the boards as guests, since they're usually the ones that are unsure and genuinely curious. These conversations are more for them, as opposed to the theist that's actually involved in the discussion.

We had a person join not too long ago, who talked about how he had lurked on the forum for a long time before becoming an atheist. It was watching the terrible arguments put forth by the theists, all the dodging and special pleading, as well as how easily they were shot down by the people here that started to convince him. Those are the people that are really going to be swayed either way. Theists like JT812, Dinosaurs, and Hgouls are more like examples as opposed to potential converts.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 16, 2011, 09:02:53 PM
Dino, still no response? You have not yet addressed or conceded the point that you have no reason to believe in a god other than your desire to do so? Are you just going to avoid the issue and only address what you want to address?

It can be difficult to realize that a hitherto treasured position is untenable. It took me three days of struggling before I gave up my agnosticism and vague pantheism. But when the logical conclusion stares you in the face, you can either admit it or lie to yourself.

Its on How to do Adherents Explain Evolution thread

No it isn't - I looked, theres nothing there.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 09:09:58 PM
kcrady

I have a few things to do on and off so I will come back to your two posts when I have clear time as they are very long.

By the way, the easiest way to convince someone that Apollo 11 was not a hoax is just say to them "if it was a hoax why did they push their luck with the conspiracy and run Apollos 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17.

I went to quite a bit of trouble to meet Eugene Cernan when he came to Australia. Had about half an hour with him as by then all the interest from the public had dies down.

You may already be familiar with this but if not it is an excellent forum

http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php (http://forum.nasaspaceflight.com/index.php)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 09:13:51 PM

It just isn't usually the ones like JT812. They're usually too far gone into the delusion. The ones that will be deconverted are the ones who lurk the boards as guests, since they're usually the ones that are unsure and genuinely curious. These conversations are more for them, as opposed to the theist that's actually involved in the discussion.


100% spot on. Same for many issues.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 09:18:41 PM

No it isn't - I looked, theres nothing there.


It's there, post 310

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 16, 2011, 09:21:27 PM
Well, the medical specialists in many cases were religious and up to and including "born again" In Australia the private practice medical specialist is the top IQ and the highest education in the land.

*Makes Note Not to Have Surgery in Australia*

Quote
One insurance client I have is Director of Emergency Medicine in one of our major hospitals. Wait for it. He runs Bible class once a week from his home.

Now you may think it is strange that at this level of education that you have people at the "born again" level and that includes the 6000 year old earth.

Not at all given how few actually read the texts--they would understand that "born again" is a horrible mistranslation--however, critical thinking, science are all processes and not attributes.  Fail to apply them, and you cease engaging in them.

I know physicians who have explored homeopathy despite the debunking of it, there are surgeons who apply a very risky therapy--without any positive evidence--because it became "standard of care" out of desperation.  They do it out of fear of being sued and that human feeling they should "do something in the face of hopelessness.  There were many who launched on to "facilitated communication" believing they had "opened the mind" of autism.

They did not.

Wallenstein's Great and Desperate Cures demonstrates the truly poor science behind what is more properly called "leucotomy" rather than "lobotomy" when mated with a strong emotional pressure to "do something."  Egaz Monitz--who championed the idea initially--claimed--I am not making this up--that basically drilling holes in the white matter of the frontal lobes [Contains the axons or communicative processes of the neurons that reside in the cerebral cortices or "gray matter."--Ed.] "untangled" them.

You see, various mental illnesses were the result of . . . "tangled" axons.  Now, one might ask, was there any evidence for these "tangles?"  Answer: less than Keanu Reeves talent for Shakespeare.  As in "none."  This "mechanism" was thought up afterwards to justify the procedure . . . given that the patients were . . . "better" as in "less of a bother to staff."

Of the many illnesses claimed to be cured by leucotomy--rivals the claims of bowel cleansing . . . actually, given that sudden damage to the frontal lobes often results in urinary and fecal incontinence we [GET ON WITH IT!--Ed.]--right . . . one of the illnesses claimed to be cured was "sexual deviancy."  Now, to be fair, you rob a man of his initiative--his drive--and he may be less likely to get out of the chair, go off, and molest someone.

Unfortunately, that did not prove to be the case--in one celebrated case of a serial pedophile, leucotomy merely robbed him of his judgment and, frankly, conscience.  Before, he felt at least hesitant and guilty when he prowled the local park for young boys--after the procedure . . . he did not care.

The history of breast cancer surgery is another wonderful example of FAILure . . . to . . . communicate! [Stop that!--Ed.]

Yes, I mean, "failure to apply the scientific method."

I highly recommend the venerable Fads and Fallacies in the Name of Science by the wonderful polymath [He just likes to use "big words."--Ed.]  Do not floccinaucinihilipilificate sequipedalian prose [Get on with it!--Ed.]--wonderful . . . Renaissance Man Martin Gardner as well as Voodoo Science by the true curmudgeon Robert Park for examples of what happens when science ceases being science.

However, nevertheless, and with over-subordination, that does not apply to either modern cosmology or evolutionary theory.  If anything, it demonstrates how proper application of science, critical thinking, et cetera corrects foolishness--even well-meaning foolishness.

So I am neither surprised nor impressed that "doctors"--even Australian doctors--do not universally apply critical thinking as do few in reality.  One of the reasons "double-blind" experiments are so stringent is that it is very difficult to eliminate bias in anything.

Modern cosmology and evolutionary theories succeed on both fronts.  As the old saw goeth: "Electrons don't lie, all others much show data."

Quote
However, as I have previously posted if someone’s starting point is God existed then Noah'a Ark and all the rest is not an issue.

And you remain incorrect.  Of course, you never identify which god. 

Now pardon me whilst I commence beating my scribe. . . .

--J. "Some Men . . . You Just . . . Can't . . . Reach!" D.

[Edited to redact to the Textus Receptus--Ed.]
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 16, 2011, 09:25:21 PM

In the case of Jesus do you think it is possible that historians deliberately left him out for political, religious or similar reasons.
What reason could the Romans have to do that? They took an interest in the security of the Empire and employed spies; they would noticed and recorded new movements starting... but they didn't. Josephus, whose report of Jesus, is recognised as a forgery, recorded a lot of detail embarrassing to the Romans about life in Palestine/Israel at the time, that's still around.

What reason would the religious side have? They succeeded (according the the Bible) in having him killed - they won and, as you say, victors write history. So why no writing? The could have written anything - lies, propaganda, anything, but there is nothing.

I can suggest no motive for leaving him out; what makes you think that he was deliberately left out?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 16, 2011, 09:51:52 PM
I don't know even where to begin on this.

Below quotes from dinosaurs.
Quote
Are you serious that you need every single thing fucking written out for you.

I said the medicos pulled me over the line. Someone compares two cars in great depth and picks one to buy. His mate says "which car have you decided to buy" and he replies "the xyx car, it was colour that pulled me over the line. His mate says "so they were that close"

If by "pulled me over the line", you mean into insanity, then this might make sense.  Really so far all you have done on this thread is say a whole lot of nothing, followed up with "but doctors say so".  Again, the fact that doctors say it means nothing.  If doctors tell you to take a certain medicine, listen to them.  If they tell you you need a surgery, listen to them.  If they tell you they believe in invisible guys in the sky as described by ancient Hebrew writings, time to think on your own.  It shouldn't pull you over a line.  It shouldnt sway you when you're "this close".  It shouldn't matter to you any more than if a lawyer, a hairstylist, or a janitor says it to you.

Is that "fucking" clear to you?

Quote
Please be specific. Physicians is a term used in America that covers all doctors. I specified medical specialists in private practice

What the hell difference does it make if they're in "private practice" or not?  Does that represent a more advanced form of physician to you?

Quote
MBBS by age 25. FRACS, FRACP..do want me to keep going?  They will get to accredited medical registrar by around age 29 and FRACS etc about age 33 to 35.

MBBS is the general practitioner. Please at least attempt to have some accuracy on something you should know about.

You have absolutely no clue what you are talking about.  Yes, you do get your bachelors in medicine/surgery (MBBS) at around age 24, if you start after graduating secondary school at age 18.   You then complete a one year internship after which you are licensed to practice medicine although most complete 2 further years as resident medical officers.  So we're looking at about age 27. 

Unless of course, you want to specialize which is why I assume you referenced the designation of fellow of the royal Australasian college of surgeons, but now you're talking more about work experience, not "going straight through to 35" whatever that means.  But I really don't understand what that has to do with one's knowledge of any god, bible, or a reflection of their IQ for that matter.

Now, I'm sure everyone here has enjoyed the education on Australian medical school education.  But the bottom line is, this remains an appeal to authority.  And a puzzling one at that, since as I've explained, nothing in a medical education qualifies you as more an expert on anything else but whatever field of medicine you were trained in.

 And yes, that does represent an appeal to authority, because unlike what you seem to think an appeal to authority is:
Quote
“authority is the police, gov’t, your boss if employed and so on.

An appeal to authority represents an argument that someone whose opinion is authoritative on the subject says so and therefore must be right.  You were trying to claim that because some doctors, I mean "private practitioners", said it so it must be true.  A classic attempt at an appeal to authority and a classic FAIL.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 16, 2011, 10:24:10 PM

In the case of Jesus do you think it is possible that historians deliberately left him out for political, religious or similar reasons.


I can suggest no motive for leaving him out; what makes you think that he was deliberately left out?

I asked if it was possible :)

And for reasons of a political nature as I outlined with guns in Australia.

As you say they were victors and could write what they like but perhaps their perceived best option was just leave him out in the hope it would die on the vine.

The Australian political system has two major parties. However, our electoral system means that minor parties can get seats in parliament and if they get 10% of the vote they have big influence because they can hold the balance of power, that is, either major party needs their vote to get a majority.

We had a minor party called One Nation and it really took off. Probably similar to the American Tea Party and very disliked by the media, which is very left wing in Australia. But once One Nation got quite big the media and the politicians simply ignored it. Media coverage just dried up and One Nation died on the vine. Often no coverage is the best weapon.

I simply find it amazing that with no TV/Radio etc that the Jesus thing could grow to what it grew to unless something happened long ago.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 10:55:34 PM
In what way can he be demonstrated?

It is demomnstrated to the person who believes it is demonstrated. It is really that simple.

No, it isn't.  While an inner, mystical experience may be very convincing to the person who has it, it is not a demonstration.  "Demonstration," by definition, is showing someone else.  If your evidence for a god, or alien abduction, or whatever is something subjective that is applicable only "to the person who believes it," it is not a "demonstration."   
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 16, 2011, 10:57:11 PM
To many peope God is demonstrable, real and useful.

This statement is self-contradictory.  The "to many people" clause is a statement of subjectivity.  As in "To many people, country-western is the best kind of music."  "Demonstrable, real and useful" are statements of objectivity.  If a god's existence was "demonstrable," you could demonstrate it instead of trying to appeal to the impossibility of demonstration ("But the Moon landing could be a hoax!  How could anyone ever know?!").  If "god" was useful, the people using it would gain an advantage that people without it lacked, which would, again, be demonstrable.  If magic worked, sorcerers could do things the rest of us couldn't.  If there were Jedi Knights, they would have advantages over ordinary cops.  And so on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 16, 2011, 11:11:11 PM
Sorry, I was slam packed busy again today. No possible way I'm responding to all the posts. But whoever said that was my second dramatic exit; I never claimed I was leaving that time, just the first time (until a surprise snow storm hit and I had tons of time on my hands). I'll start replying again. And I wasn't using that as an excuse to not respond to posts. I happily will. The only reason I even commented the jerks thing is because there is so much of it that it clouds the posts and takes up so much time reading through meaningless insults. A lot of them are very funny (and I thought that signature, whoevers it was, was funny too). It's just hard when I've got little time to read over lots of insults with no reasoning or thought and 1) not respond to the insults over the questions and 2) pick out what's truly meaningful. Feel free to make jokes, there's just too many sometimes and it makes real discussion impossible.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 16, 2011, 11:13:44 PM
And there's lots of people getting frustrated that I'm not responding to their posts. You have to realize there are tons of you and just me and Dinosaurs on the other side. I don't have time to hit everything. Feel free to keep reminding me of posts but understand that I might not be able to get to it (if I don't then keep reminding me b/c eventually I'll address it). Thanks!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 16, 2011, 11:15:07 PM
And random question. How do you add respect/ know why you had respect added?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 17, 2011, 12:28:07 AM

No it isn't - I looked, theres nothing there.


It's there, post 310

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820)

...but there is nothing there that deals with the points I made?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jeff7 on January 17, 2011, 01:02:31 AM
@JT:  ...what?

First you snap out about those on this site here being close-minded, despite utterly rejecting at least the 'Jesus/etc. aren't real' argument out of hand without responding or providing any reasons as to why, or at least ones that haven't been sufficiently shown to at least be possible.

Secondly - lots of insults and little thought? Don't get me wrong, I may not agree with plenty of the wording used, but come on now, there are several good thoughts and points made you could easily find through everything. From the outside of this discussion so far, I'd say it still looks like you're attempting to dodge, but m' willing to give the benefit of the doubt - others, maybe not so much.

However - if you're really willing to go at this, and I mean really, no 'oh, you're being mean so I'm not going to respond to your points' or vanishing/unable to handle it - I suggest starting this over again, perhaps. Or/otherwise, narrowing the topic back down again. Leaving it open to questions in general is going to get you a lot of responses. Which, if you then answer them, will then likely receive numerous responses right back. (And I think you've seen just how much some people here can write and develop their thoughts!) Are you up for it?

What I always like to ask is a small number of questions, to begin things off with. 1.) Why do you believe? Was their some event in your life? Upbringing? Considered the evidence? 2.) I think it's been brought up before - the magic decoder ring. How do you know which of the Biblical stories, etc. are to be taken at face value/are parables/etc.? 3.) What do you think of denominations of the church? Of how their are so many thousands upon thousands, with many claiming to be the only way? 4.) Of the following, is the bible: inerrant? Inspired, divinely or otherwise? Something to be followed fully, to the letter? And, to each, why? 5.) Do you know how the bible came to be?

Just a small sample of such questions, of which I'm curious to find out your answer to. But, there are a number of other posters that probably really want your response, so by all means, I can wait.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 01:02:44 AM
Vivisectus



It's there, post 310

http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820 (http://whywontgodhealamputees.com/forums/index.php/topic,17176.msg385820.html#msg385820)



...but there is nothing there that deals with the points I made?


I followed Ambassador Pony's instructions.

And

Dino, do you intend to respond to William honestly. Accepting that you were wrong about the forum being a place where people discuss something that doesn't exist?

I don't intend to allow any of your messages to get posted until then.

I just checked and there are no posts waiting to be cleared.

Perhaps you can collect and list your points in a single post.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: natlegend on January 17, 2011, 02:00:01 AM
Dinosaurs:
Quote
The Australian political system has two major parties. However, our electoral system means that minor parties can get seats in parliament and if they get 10% of the vote they have big influence because they can hold the balance of power, that is, either major party needs their vote to get a majority.

We had a minor party called One Nation and it really took off. Probably similar to the American Tea Party and very disliked by the media, which is very left wing in Australia. But once One Nation got quite big the media and the politicians simply ignored it. Media coverage just dried up and One Nation died on the vine. Often no coverage is the best weapon.

Indeed, One Nation was very popular in Queensland. However, the two major parties saw Pauline Hanson for the real threat she was and started a witch hunt that largely involved use of the media. She was branded as being racist primarily, a cleverly chosen label that completely grated against the Australian psyche.

One Nation never fizzled out. After Pauline Handon was sent to jail for supposed fraud (which was later retracted) she could take no more and left politics. And I don't blame her. What the media did to her was outrageous.

Dinosaurs:
Quote
I simply find it amazing that with no TV/Radio etc that the Jesus thing could grow to what it grew to unless something happened long ago.

^^^ So this point is invalid.












Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 17, 2011, 02:36:32 AM

Interesting... So you converted from atheism to Christianity? What convinced you that the Christian God is real?

Well I did not revert to being a Christian as such. I basically dumped that at age 15. But I am a believer in a supernatural but I don't completely discount the Bible/God. I have a few boxes I can tick for what I am and I swing around a lot with them.

With the move from atheism that started to take some hold when i was about 28. Don't really know why. But it is fair to say my atheism was not real overpowering. In other words if we had internet forums back then i would not of been on a forum sprouting the cause for atheism

Did you not believe, or did you just not care?

But what pulled me over the line in 1980, when I was 32, was with my insurance business i started doing business with medical specialists. Naturally enough when you are taking about life and disability insurance then if at least one of you has some interest in this topic then it surfaces and I always had the interest. Well, the medical specialists in many cases were religious and up to and including "born again" In Australia the private practice medical specialist is the top IQ and the highest education in the land.

Well its certainly the highest medical education, but otherwise a massive generalization.

Medical professionals can be as deluded as anyone outside of their chosen field of expertise.

Non stop from age 18 to around age 35. But to cut a long story short when I queried several of them they answered along the lines of....you can't do this job and leave work without knowing there is something there pulling strings. The ones that were "born agains" were not church affiliated in fact against churches as is the case with many "born again" Australia. That was important because that removed the issues pf church influence since so many hospitals are church owned.

One insurance client I have is Director of Emergency Medicine in one of our major hospitals. Wait for it. He runs Bible class once a week from his home.

Try not to be too impressed by medical professionals. They are just a very advanced form of mechanic.

Plus they are human, and subject to all the foibles and biases that entails.

And this is essentially an argument from authority, which is a logical failure.

Now you may think it is strange that at this level of education that you have people at the "born again" level and that includes the 6000 year old earth. However, as I have previously posted if someone’s starting point is God existed then Noah'a Ark and all the rest is not an issue.

Certainly if you believe in magic, then you can believe six impossible things before breakfast.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: kcrady on January 17, 2011, 02:52:57 AM
In the case of Jesus do you think it is possible that historians deliberately left him out for polictical, religious or similar reasons.

That depends on what you mean by "Jesus."  The super-powered, miracle-working Jesus of the Gospels could not have been suppressed in this manner because his supernatural displays would have reached too wide an audience.  People who, for example, joined the 800,000 or so pilgrims coming to Jerusalem for Passover and witnessed the sun and stars being shut off for three hours at his death, the "great earthquake," and people crawling out of their graves and walking into the city would have returned home to spread the tale both orally and in writing.  Suppressing that would be like the Japanese government preventing anyone from learning that Godzilla stomped Tokyo in 1962, by making sure all the reporters kept mum.

If by "Jesus" you mean the sort of figure most NT scholars think was the grain of sand at the center of the pearl of myth and legend created by Christianity--a simple yet charismatic itinerant teacher and prophet--sure, they could have either refused to acknowledge him or considered him not "newsworthy."

However, this would not explain why the earliest Christian writings--the New Testament epistles, especially the authentic Pauline epistles--would do the same.  These writings speak of a Christ who is a cosmic, divine figure revealed through the Hebrew Scriptures and visionaries like Paul.  They know nothing of a man who recently walked the wilderness of Galilee, no manger, no Wise Men, no Blessed Virgin Mary, no ministry of teaching and miracle-working in Judea, no resurrection of Lazarus, no Via Dolorosa, no Calvary, no Holy Sepulcher.  Even when appeals to a historical Christ and his authoritative teachings or deeds would clinch their argument, the Epistle writers do not cite him.  Instead, they'll quote passages from their ancient Scriptures, or make reference to figures like Abraham, Jacob, or Esau.

Given there was no TV/Radio in those days to spread the message I find it amazing that Christianity and later Islam got going in such a big way. It just seems to me that something big must of happened.

What about Mormonism or Scientology?  Did "something big" have to happen for them to spread, increasing their likelihood of being true?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 17, 2011, 03:09:35 AM
Dino

theres only one - you have no reason to believe what you believe except the fact that you want to believe them.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 03:19:51 AM
Dino

theres only one - you have no reason to believe what you believe except the fact that you want to believe them.

Is that something I said about atheists? I am not sure what you want me to do.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 03:50:45 AM
ksm

I found the medical specialist had by far the highest percentage of religious people from any of the various professions. By profession I mean where a university degree is mandatory.

With the medical specialist the number that are religious drops down a fair amount when thet are staff specialists. Staff specialists in Australia are employed in the public hospistal system. Although figures are probably distorted because staff specialists are rarely surgeons. Most are physician specialists, cadiologist, neurologist, nephrologists and so on. I have no idea what GPs are like as did very little business with them.

The incidence of religion seems to increase as incomes get very high and in relation to the occupation. In other words a plumber eaning real big money is more likely to be religious than a plumber who is an employee.

The reason I gathered  this informantion (as other have done for the same reason) is the atheist who is fairly strong, that is, not some one who says they are an atheist because they think the Catholic church is wrong, buys differently to the person who is fairly religious. For best results the written presentation you give them comparing policy wording etc is done differently for each.

I have found strong atheism to most likely occur with white collar university qualifications and where there are no sales ingredient and the income is usually lower than the management people. I have found the highest incidence of religion with with white collar workers is with salesman and especially when self employed or commission only and where it involves canvassing as opposed to waiting for a potential custom to telephone or walk into the show room. As a side note, the big earning medical specialist, say the $2 million and up in Australia are very good salesmen. In fact the two best salesmen I have met were medicos, a cardiologist and a caardothoracic surgeon. Not only was the cardiologist top at "selling" his hospital; setups, GP referrals but other cardiologists under him. And with patients he is unbelievable. I took my late mother to him and when mum came out I asked her how she went and she said 'I have never felt so good in my life". As a side note that bloke is a real strong Islamer (arab) and the cardiothoracis I mentioned was devout Catholic, mass every moring stuff.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 04:05:58 AM

Well I did not revert to being a Christian as such. I basically dumped that at age 15. But I am a believer in a supernatural but I don't completely discount the Bible/God. I have a few boxes I can tick for what I am and I swing around a lot with them.

With the move from atheism that started to take some hold when i was about 28. Don't really know why. But it is fair to say my atheism was not real overpowering. In other words if we had internet forums back then i would not of been on a forum sprouting the cause for atheism


Did you not believe, or did you just not care?


My move away from religion at 15 was a combination of the Catholic church and what I saw as a lot of stupid contradictory man made stuff, the rebel in me, always did and still dislike authority and rules. Darwin's book probably added the "logical factor" :)

There was no particular reason for the start of the move out of atheism. Although there is no doubt that having been involved in the world of selling, canvassing etc was an influence, probably much bigger than I know.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 05:58:32 AM

MBBS by age 25. FRACS, FRACP..do want me to keep going?  They will get to accredited medical registrar by around age 29 and FRACS etc about age 33 to 35.

MBBS is the general practitioner. Please at least attempt to have some accuracy on something you should know about.



You have absolutely no clue what you are talking about.  Yes, you do get your bachelors in medicine/surgery (MBBS) at around age 24, if you start after graduating secondary school at age 18.   You then complete a one year internship after which you are licensed to practice medicine although most complete 2 further years as resident medical officers.  So we're looking at about age 27. 


Sorry mate but you don't have a clue. FRACS and FRACP typically comes 7 to 10 years after after graduation, which is about age 25.
Do you want put money on it? Put up or shut up.  Are you prepared to bet it is age 27 to get to FRACS or FRACP. Actually I will give you some leeway and assume you meant 30.

If you put an insurance application in on a doctor 30 and under the question that asks about qualifications you put FRACS or FRACP the insurance company would immediately contact the agent and ask is there a mistake on the date of birth. Age 30 and FRACS does not compute.

And atheists say they only deal with facts.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 17, 2011, 06:10:37 AM
Aren't dino and positive from different countries? Thus, both presenting facts?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 17, 2011, 06:27:19 AM
Aren't dino and positive from different countries? Thus, both presenting facts?

For some strange reason, Dino conjures:

(http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u264/DoctorX_photos/FAIL/fe0fd6cd.jpg)

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 06:30:43 AM
Aren't dino and positive from different countries? Thus, both presenting facts?

But I have said Australia plenty of times.

But I bet he can't find a practicing cardiothoracic surgeon in the US of A aged 27 or neurosurgeon etc ;D ;D ;D

A typical medical specialist in Australia will lauch his private practice rocket at around 35, some at 34.

Actually I should not even give him 3 years leeway since he is the big fact man. Lets jump back to age 27

As an aside the FRACS is Fellow of the Royal Australian College of Surgeons. FRACP is Fellow of the Royal Australian College of Physicians. The other medical specialties are FR*****. The UK drops the A, that is, FRCP or FRCS

An Australian surgeon will have on his card MBBS FRACS and physician specialist MBBS FRACP. If the surgeon becomes a Mr or a big deal generally he will often leave MBBS of his card. Sort of ego thing...anyon can get MBBS so what bother mentioning it.

But American doctors tend to just call themselves John Smth MD. America also uses "physician" to cover any type of doctor.

But America also has its college qualifications and societies such as FACS for Fellow of American College of Surgeon or FACC Fellow of American College of Cardiologist. Quite a few Australian specialists also have FACS or FACC

In theory an MBBS (GP qualification) could do surgery in Australia because he has a batchelor of surgery but without FRACS there is no hospital that allow it etc. in other words he can't do it.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 17, 2011, 06:43:12 AM
Are you serious that you need every single thing fucking written out for you.

I said the medicos pulled me over the line. Someone compares two cars in great depth and picks one to buy. His mate says "which car have you decided to buy" and he replies "the xyx car, it was colour that pulled me over the line. His mate says "so they were that close"
So, which car is the true car?



By the way, the easiest way to convince someone that Apollo 11 was not a hoax is just say to them "if it was a hoax why did they push their luck with the conspiracy and run Apollos 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17.
I doubt that. The better way is to give them the location of the mirror and access to a laser, or the pictures India shot of the landing site - and neither will shut them up either. See, it's equally easy for them to posit a plausible reason why they would do it as it is for them to posit one why they would. It's not even like we have precedent to go on as is the case with Roman census practises since the whole thing is by definition hush hush. Unapproachable by mere logic, one might say.



Also, this evidence arbitrarity stuff pisses me off.
Just fucking no. You may interpret evidence any way you like, but that doesn't mean it's evidence for whatever you pulled out your ass.
Evidence is in the eye of the beholder. Which is precisely why people (well, unless the topic is religion or something) look at evidence from other angles, cross-reference it with other evidence, get other beholders to confirm what they saw; so they can be sure that that the interpretation is not merely what they thought they saw. In short, to remove the evidence from the eye of the beholder as much as possible.
There is no such thing as true for me or demonstrable to me. It's either true/demonstrable or it isn't. It only says something about the people employing such language than about anything else. It is not true to them, or demonstrable; they have merely accepted it.
If it works for you, it isn't therefore true. If it's a good thing for you, it isn't therefore true. If it makes sense to you, it isn't therefore true. It doesn't matter if "you" is just the one of you, or half a billion people.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 07:23:31 AM
Are you serious that you need every single thing fucking written out for you.

I said the medicos pulled me over the line. Someone compares two cars in great depth and picks one to buy. His mate says "which car have you decided to buy" and he replies "the xyx car, it was colour that pulled me over the line. His mate says "so they were that close"


So, which car is the true car?


You have missed the point. The point being that lots of analysis might have been done by someone but they don't need to write pages about it. As I said with the car example the colour pulled him over the line. In other words after careful analysis both cars were so close the choice of car came down to something very small.

By the way, the easiest way to convince someone that Apollo 11 was not a hoax is just say to them "if it was a hoax why did they push their luck with the conspiracy and run Apollos 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and 17.




I doubt that. The better way is to give them the location of the mirror and access to a laser, or the pictures India shot of the landing site - and neither will shut them up either.


That's too hard and if they are not in any way science minded you have to waste your fucking time explaining about the laser and mirror.

BUT, they rapidly appreciate that a big conspiracy is not something you try 6 more times.


Also, this evidence arbitrarity stuff pisses me off.
Just fucking no. You may interpret evidence any way you like, but that doesn't mean it's evidence for whatever you pulled out your ass.
Evidence is in the eye of the beholder. Which is precisely why people (well, unless the topic is religion or something)


The topics on this site are religion.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 17, 2011, 09:12:34 AM
@JT:  ...what?

First you snap out about those on this site here being close-minded, despite utterly rejecting at least the 'Jesus/etc. aren't real' argument out of hand without responding or providing any reasons as to why, or at least ones that haven't been sufficiently shown to at least be possible.

Secondly - lots of insults and little thought? Don't get me wrong, I may not agree with plenty of the wording used, but come on now, there are several good thoughts and points made you could easily find through everything. From the outside of this discussion so far, I'd say it still looks like you're attempting to dodge, but m' willing to give the benefit of the doubt - others, maybe not so much.

However - if you're really willing to go at this, and I mean really, no 'oh, you're being mean so I'm not going to respond to your points' or vanishing/unable to handle it - I suggest starting this over again, perhaps. Or/otherwise, narrowing the topic back down again. Leaving it open to questions in general is going to get you a lot of responses. Which, if you then answer them, will then likely receive numerous responses right back. (And I think you've seen just how much some people here can write and develop their thoughts!) Are you up for it?

What I always like to ask is a small number of questions, to begin things off with. 1.) Why do you believe? Was their some event in your life? Upbringing? Considered the evidence? 2.) I think it's been brought up before - the magic decoder ring. How do you know which of the Biblical stories, etc. are to be taken at face value/are parables/etc.? 3.) What do you think of denominations of the church? Of how their are so many thousands upon thousands, with many claiming to be the only way? 4.) Of the following, is the bible: inerrant? Inspired, divinely or otherwise? Something to be followed fully, to the letter? And, to each, why? 5.) Do you know how the bible came to be?

Just a small sample of such questions, of which I'm curious to find out your answer to. But, there are a number of other posters that probably really want your response, so by all means, I can wait.
I didn't mean responses weren't thought out. There have been some great questions and responses with LOTS of thought put into them. I just meant the insults were usually thoughtless, because (in general) they don't even apply.
1) I was brought up in a Christian home all my life, BUT I didn't just accept it because it's what my parents brought me up in. As a little kid that's what I did at first. I got "saved" after having a fun day at the fair when I was 7 because I knew I was supposed to do that at some point. However, this meant nothing and I just did it because I had been told I should. Later in life, age 13, I got saved for real. My life turned around. I became a noticeably different person. And eventually I started to become very interested in apologetics and if God really did or did not exist. I read arguments from both sides (without commenting because I didn't know enough) and never saw an argument that persuaded me Christianity/ God wasn't true. Most of the arguments I saw were "I don't understand why God would do that" or "that doesn't make sense" arguments about God which didn't phase me because I didn't know the answer to any of those questions either but I knew that would make more and more sense as I began to understand the nature and character of God. Eventually, I started looking more at scientific arguments about the existence of God and it did bother me at first. There were some pretty convincing arguments from the other side (atheist) and I began to wonder if God really was real. So I began to look on and reflect on and pray about the existence of God. And I saw and felt God move in ways only he could. You can call it the placebo effect all you want, but it's not; it's real. And that is why I believe in God  :)
2) By taking every story in light of the rest of scripture. I personally believe in the events of the Bible as real stories, but parables, analogies, etc. do exist. Sometimes it might be difficult to know what is a parable, analogy, or true story unless specified, but that doesn't interfere with anything you would want to argue about. I'm sure this question was asked so you could bash some of the stories found in the Bible, and if that's the case then feel free to do so because I believe many of the stories listed in the Bible to have actually happened.
3) I hate denominations. They are all small differences that split the Church apart. And many times, denominational beliefs are elevated above Biblical beliefs. It all comes because of different interpretations of scripture, which is fine until it causes division in the Church.
4) Fully inspired by God because it says so in 2 Timothy 3:16. And I believe it should be followed, HOWEVER, many of the Old Testament laws no longer apply after the coming of Christ.
5) Written over a long period of time. Gathered together at councils and made into one book. (I'm guessing that's what you're talking about)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 17, 2011, 09:22:47 AM
Also, this evidence arbitrarity stuff pisses me off.
Just fucking no. You may interpret evidence any way you like, but that doesn't mean it's evidence for whatever you pulled out your ass.
Evidence is in the eye of the beholder. Which is precisely why people (well, unless the topic is religion or something) look at evidence from other angles, cross-reference it with other evidence, get other beholders to confirm what they saw; so they can be sure that that the interpretation is not merely what they thought they saw. In short, to remove the evidence from the eye of the beholder as much as possible.
There is no such thing as true for me or demonstrable to me. It's either true/demonstrable or it isn't. It only says something about the people employing such language than about anything else. It is not true to them, or demonstrable; they have merely accepted it.
If it works for you, it isn't therefore true. If it's a good thing for you, it isn't therefore true. If it makes sense to you, it isn't therefore true. It doesn't matter if "you" is just the one of you, or half a billion people.
I've done all this (and I'm sure dinos has too) and I'm still a Christian. I looked at the evidence from the side of atheism and theism (more specifically Christianity). I looked at the evidence and asked other people about what they believed. I saw that Christians had experienced something. So I talked to other Christians and they confirmed. So I looked at more and more stories of life change and saw in these cases that my interpretation and experience was the same as many people and therefore not just a personal delusion or misconception.
And the true/ demonstrable argument doesn't hold up. Let's look at science! Those who believe in the Singularity have demonstrable evidence that they believe is true. If they talk to other people then there will be many people who confirm that they are correct. They can give demonstrable data for what they believe is true. And then there's those who believe in multiple dimensions. If they asked other people, there would be many who confirmed that they are correct. They could give demonstrable evidence and data for their models. They both have demonstrable evidence for what they believe to be true but both are wrong. So even if demonstrable evidence can/cannot be provided for the case of a God (which I believe it can but), does it matter? Because demonstrable evidence can be provided for a lot of things that aren't true.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Tykster on January 17, 2011, 09:30:57 AM
When trying to get a diverse sample of answers to ones questions, it would probably be a good idea to ask people outside of the bubble you're in. Otherwise..... well, you're the result.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 17, 2011, 09:45:10 AM
So I began to look on and reflect on and pray about the existence of God. And I saw and felt God move in ways only he could.

Have you considered getting a girlfriend?

Quote
You can call it the placebo effect all you want, but it's not; it's real.

Then explain why it wants children to be tortured and die.  Since it is willing to . . . "move" you . . . but is unwilling to "move" others?  Are you . . . "Special?"

Quote
I personally believe in the events of the Bible as real stories, . . .

What you believe is irrelevant to what actually is.  The histories of the biblical texts are mythic, the Earth is not flat, there was no Global Flood--either of them--et cetera.  You might as well believe in Harry Potter. . . .

Quote
4) Fully inspired by God because it says so in 2 Timothy 3:16.

Which is a late, forged letter contrary to the far earlier texts.  It was created, particularly, to deal with the problems you have: an inability to explain what the stories fail.  So the author appealed to "theopneustos"--something foreign to the traditions.  Why else would one text call another the "lying pen of scribes?" Nevertheless, if a "god" "inspired" a mess that thinks the Earth is flat and was suppose to end a good 1,900 years ago . . . well, time for you to find another imaginary friend.

Quote
And I believe it should be followed, . . .

You wish to sacrifice your first born?  Best you not get a girlfriend then. . . .

Quote
HOWEVER, many of the Old Testament laws no longer apply after the coming of Christ.

Not according to the NT.  You REJECT the NT?!!!1!!!1!11

No, son, you merely read excuses that allow you to maintain your willful ignorance into the texts.  When you cannot find it, you claim "allegory" and make it up and pretend it is there.  Sorry, your tactics are old and fail.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 17, 2011, 10:44:14 AM
How do you think Jt 812 the Japanese history taught in Japanese schools differs from the history taught in American schools in reference to WW2? How about if the original inhabitants of North America wrote the history books? And the REAL history of North America were told?

 You are what you have been taught from an early age maybe? Are you as naive as you seem? There are mountains of contrary to any and all religions,but because a few people of any faith get together and write THEIR version of history does not make it the correct version.
here are some that are easy to answer take a shot. History is written by the victors of conflicts .....so it is pointless because it only tells one side
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 17, 2011, 11:00:26 AM
When trying to get a diverse sample of answers to ones questions, it would probably be a good idea to ask people outside of the bubble you're in. Otherwise..... well, you're the result.
Clearly the same goes for you.

Quote: Doctor X
Quote
Then explain why it wants children to be tortured and die.  Since it is willing to . . . "move" you . . . but is unwilling to "move" others?  Are you . . . "Special?"
Is it that he is unwilling to move or others are unwilling to believe?

Quote: Doctor X
Quote
What you believe is irrelevant to what actually is.  The histories of the biblical texts are mythic, the Earth is not flat, there was no Global Flood--either of them--et cetera.  You might as well believe in Harry Potter. . . .
The Bible doesn't claim the earth is flat and there is lots of evidence for a global flood.

Quote: Doctor X
Quote
Not according to the NT.  You REJECT the NT?!!!1!!!1!11
Once again, scarecrow argument. I don't reject the NT and the NT doesn't claim that all the OT laws still apply. It clearly shows that they don't.
How do you think Jt 812 the Japanese history taught in Japanese schools differs from the history taught in American schools in reference to WW2? How about if the original inhabitants of North America wrote the history books? And the REAL history of North America were told?

 You are what you have been taught from an early age maybe? Are you as naive as you seem? There are mountains of contrary to any and all religions,but because a few people of any faith get together and write THEIR version of history does not make it the correct version.
here are some that are easy to answer take a shot. History is written by the victors of conflicts .....so it is pointless because it only tells one side
Ok, so you've proved that not all history books can be trusted? 1) That doesn't prove the Bible can't be trusted and 2) There is evidence contrary to just about everything. How do you think creationists argue against atheists? By giving evidence contrary to what they believe. So does that make you wrong too? And your bend on reality causes you to make just as many conclusions based on the evidence you're given as my take on reality. Given the same evidence we could both come to different conclusions. Because you start with a "God doesn't exist" mindset (whether you admit to it or not, it's obvious you do) and I start with a "God does exist" mindset. We are both still open-minded (hopefully) but we most likely will come to different conclusions (not because of ignorance) but because of initial mindsets.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 17, 2011, 11:13:11 AM
And random question. How do you add respect/ know why you had respect added?


You click one of the arrows above the post, next to the number.  The number may be postive, negative or 0. If you click the up arrow, you add respect.  If you click the down arrow, it gives a negative.  However, negatives are not counted on your total respect score. 

There is no way to know why the score was given as it is set up now. 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 17, 2011, 11:17:04 AM


You click one of the arrows above the post, next to the number.  The number may be postive, negative or 0. If you click the up arrow, you add respect.  If you click the down arrow, it gives a negative.  However, negatives are not counted on your total respect score. 

There is no way to know why the score was given as it is set up now. 

Thanks!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Zankuu on January 17, 2011, 11:19:29 AM
[...] there is lots of evidence for a global flood.

What do you consider as evidence?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: black ink on January 17, 2011, 11:38:34 AM
JT812,

I know you need to reply to a lot of questions, but I was hoping you can answer mine.
I'll repeat. Since you blame natural disaster (storms, earthquake, and all that) on the sins of man, do you also blame us on that giant storm in Jupiter on man?
I will also add one more question.
Do you think it is justified to blame all this on man?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 17, 2011, 12:32:28 PM
Instructions should not be riddles.

Hah! This is funny! This is exactly why I think the bible is a load of shit.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 17, 2011, 01:51:49 PM
What do you consider as evidence?
I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood". If you don't feel like doing that then I'll copy and paste it for you if you want me to.

JT812,

I know you need to reply to a lot of questions, but I was hoping you can answer mine.
I'll repeat. Since you blame natural disaster (storms, earthquake, and all that) on the sins of man, do you also blame us on that giant storm in Jupiter on man?
I will also add one more question.
Do you think it is justified to blame all this on man?

I've never really thought about it. But I think you might be missing the point (maybe not though). Basically original sin led to the earth being perfect to the earth being broken. This led to imperfection in life and earth. Whether the entire universe (or even earth for that matter) was free of storms before "the fall" I'm not sure. I'm not even sure if original sin is what caused storms. I just assume it is because they are destructive and all bad entered the world after original sin. That's what I believe at least.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jetson on January 17, 2011, 01:57:37 PM

I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood". If you don't feel like doing that then I'll copy and paste it for you if you want me to.


Oh dear...please don't ever ask me to do that again.  eeeww!
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 17, 2011, 02:16:51 PM
Oh dear...please don't ever ask me to do that again.  eeeww!

There, there Jetson, just read some science journals, something by Shakespeare, and maybe a little Christopher Hitchens or Dawkins and all of the stupid will wash away.

JT812, take some serious firendly advice from me. Don't start trying to prove the flood was real. You will get eviscerated and very, very quickly. The entire idea is a monument to theistic idiocy.

As a sidenote and some other friendly advice. Don't copy and paste either. Make your own arguments. If it's just copying to provide evidence to back up your claims that's fine. But if you have to copy and paste the arguments of other people, just don't make the claim. Argue it in your own words and show that you understand what you are talking about yourself.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jeff7 on January 17, 2011, 02:21:02 PM
First, thanks for the response.

1) I was brought up in a Christian home all my life, BUT I didn't just accept it because it's what my parents brought me up in. As a little kid that's what I did at first. I got "saved" after having a fun day at the fair when I was 7 because I knew I was supposed to do that at some point. However, this meant nothing and I just did it because I had been told I should. Later in life, age 13, I got saved for real. My life turned around. I became a noticeably different person. And eventually I started to become very interested in apologetics and if God really did or did not exist. I read arguments from both sides (without commenting because I didn't know enough) and never saw an argument that persuaded me Christianity/ God wasn't true. Most of the arguments I saw were "I don't understand why God would do that" or "that doesn't make sense" arguments about God which didn't phase me because I didn't know the answer to any of those questions either but I knew that would make more and more sense as I began to understand the nature and character of God. Eventually, I started looking more at scientific arguments about the existence of God and it did bother me at first. There were some pretty convincing arguments from the other side (atheist) and I began to wonder if God really was real. So I began to look on and reflect on and pray about the existence of God. And I saw and felt God move in ways only he could. You can call it the placebo effect all you want, but it's not; it's real. And that is why I believe in God  :)

And I went through the same thing, JT. Just recently, in fact, over a period of several (6ish?) months. I read deeper and deeper, buried my head in numerous books upon the subject, along with a number of other sources, such as this very forum. I, like many others on this forum who were once Christian, sought and prayed desperately and often. (I for months, some for years.) And yet - nothing but silence.


2) By taking every story in light of the rest of scripture. I personally believe in the events of the Bible as real stories, but parables, analogies, etc. do exist. Sometimes it might be difficult to know what is a parable, analogy, or true story unless specified, but that doesn't interfere with anything you would want to argue about. I'm sure this question was asked so you could bash some of the stories found in the Bible, and if that's the case then feel free to do so because I believe many of the stories listed in the Bible to have actually happened.

A few things: How do you define what is real/historical/etc.? Genesis for example, of the (two) creation stor(ies), do you regard that as truth, or something else? Why or why not? And the same for other stories in the bible. Do you believe in YEC, the Ussher date for creation, etc? As to the worldwide flood, I'll ask you this: why did other civilizations at the time not seem to notice the fact they were being wiped out for being so evil, and the fact that there are numerous 'great flood' stories through cultures. (No, that is not evidence such a flood happened, either.)

3) I hate denominations. They are all small differences that split the Church apart. And many times, denominational beliefs are elevated above Biblical beliefs. It all comes because of different interpretations of scripture, which is fine until it causes division in the Church.

You didn't answer my question, though. (Or, I guess, I might should have worded it differently.) How do you know which such interpretations of scripture is correct?

4) Fully inspired by God because it says so in 2 Timothy 3:16. And I believe it should be followed, HOWEVER, many of the Old Testament laws no longer apply after the coming of Christ.

As was already pointed out, and I believe your failed to respond, is the fact that we very much see the Pastoral Epistles (1+2 Tim, Titus) along with a few other letters as not written by 'Paul,' the writer of about half the letters in the NT. I would like if you'd please respond to this/Doctor X's point.

5) Written over a long period of time. Gathered together at councils and made into one book. (I'm guessing that's what you're talking about)

Yes. But to go along with the previous points, how do you know what was in fact, divinely inspired? How about the Gospel of Mary? Or the Apocalypse of Peter? 3 Corinthians? The letters not written by Paul in the NT? The other texts of early Christianities, such as various other gnostic texts? Why were those not included? Did the people gathering them together have inspiration/guidance, or other motives? And so on.

I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood". If you don't feel like doing that then I'll copy and paste it for you if you want me to.

No, JT. Provide evidence to back up your claims. I would prefer if you didn't copy and paste, either, but instead using such to argue your point. But be careful, as said, when trying to prove the flood..
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Zankuu on January 17, 2011, 04:43:47 PM
What do you consider as evidence?
I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood". If you don't feel like doing that then I'll copy and paste it for you if you want me to.

I'd like to read over your best evidence that attests to a real worldwide deluge and we can work from there.

• What I don't want are copy pastes from a layman of an apologetic website.
• What I do want are citations from scholarly works that back up any scientific claim.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 17, 2011, 04:49:12 PM
What do you consider as evidence?
I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood".

If you start a poll you'll find that at least 99% of members know every little lay tidbit of stupid that such an activity would reveal.

One would not even need to google, you could do a wwgha (old forum and new) search and find each thread where that ridiculous and ignorant claim has been cut to shreds. You'll also recognize some names, so take it easy on us if you find some of us overly dismissive of the same old tired, ignorant BS.

 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 17, 2011, 05:02:02 PM
I know everybody got pissed at me last time I did this but you can google "evidence for global flood". If you don't feel like doing that then I'll copy and paste it for you if you want me to.
I think I have an idea where you're going wrong. There's no denying that there were floods on the earth from time to time - you only have to look at Brazil and Australia today. However, you seem to think that at some time in the past, they all happened together.

This is probably difficult maths for you but if you work out the surface area of the world, and multiply that by the height of Mount Ararat, the amount of water is something like 100 times the amount of water presently on the planet. Where has it all gone?

See? You have to think about these things.

Quote
I'll repeat. Since you blame natural disaster (storms, earthquake, and all that) on the sins of man, do you also blame us on that giant storm in Jupiter on man?
I will also add one more question.
Do you think it is justified to blame all this on man?

Quote
I've never really thought about it.
Do you think that you should?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 17, 2011, 07:49:38 PM
Jt812
as a geologist, I am unfortunately very familiar with the utter nonsense that creationsits try to claim as evidence for any global flood.  I ask you to pick one part that you think is the best evidence and then present it here.  I am willing to work with you through all of the technicalities that you might not understand.  But do realize there is NO evidence for the flood claimed in the bible and people have been showing that Christiansn are wrong for a very long time.  Other Chrsitians like "dinosaurs" here on thsi forum try desperately to make excuses for this lack, like 'god hid all of the evidence".  This makes me quite sure that Christians can't agree on anything and the whole thiing is a myth, just like any other religion. 

 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 17, 2011, 08:06:00 PM
Well, that and the Earth is not flat. . . .

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Positiveaob on January 17, 2011, 08:27:10 PM
Dinosaurs,
I very much know what I am talking about with medical education, quite a bit a more than you do.  But I am done with this BS because: A) it is absolutely irrelevant to the point at hand, B) you're wrong (but then again, you're trying to claim that the world was created in 6 days, so...) and C) I got better things to do than gt into nonsensical name calling contests with anonymous people on the Internet.  If you want to keep barking, have fun.  I'm done.

Your assertion that the majority of specialists are religious is not backed up by any data whatsoever, is based on personal experience which you have relatively little of (compared to those of us in the profession), and is at best a very flawed appeal to authority.  Nothing in the education of a physician, regardless of your specialty, gives you any special qualifications whatsoever with regards to the accuracy of the christian bible.  This whole line of reasoning is just plain ridiculous. 

JT, please tell me you have something to back up this assertion that there is evidence for the biblical flood.  We've already been down this road several times this thread where you were asked to back up your claim with evidence.  Surely you realize by now that no one here is just going to accept such a statement without any evidence backing it up.  Dont just show evidence of a "big" flood that killed alot of people.  We've had several such floods in the last decade alone, that does nothing to show the biblical flood tale was eve remotely true.  What proof do you have?  Is this gonna be like the "there is plenty of evidence the apostles died for their beliefs" again?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: nogodsforme on January 17, 2011, 08:43:33 PM
I have a background in earth science. I will try to remain calm and I will speak slowly so everyone, including JT812 understands. (Deep calming breath.)

There. Was. No. Worldwide. Flood.

There. Is. Not. Enough. Water. On. The. Planet.

To. Cover. All. The. Mountains.

Even. If. All. The. Glaciers. Melted. At. Once.

If. It. Was. Caused. By. Magic.

It. Would. Still. Have. Had. To. Leave. Evidence. Behind.

Massive. Amounts. Of. Evidence. All. Over. The. World.

Very. Obvious. Physical. Evidence. That. Could. Not. Be. Hidden.

Unless. God. Wanted. Us. To. Think. There. Was. No. Flood.

Geology. Would. Be. An. Entirely. Different. Field.

Based. On. The. Obvious. Fact. Of. A. Global. Flood.

All. Human. Cultures. Would. Have. Been. Utterly. Destroyed.

Subsequent. Disease. Environment. Would. Have. Killed. Any. Survivors.

No. Plant. Life. Could. Have. Survived.

Without. Plants. No. Animals. Or. Humans.

There. Would. Be. No. Egypt. No. China. No. Native. Americans.

Human. DNA. Would. Show. Only. One. Surviving. Family. Line. (Noah.)

Fossils. Would. Be. All. Jumbled. Together.

Dinosaurs. With. Bunnies. Trilobites. With. Kangaroos.

Tropical. Species. With. Temperate. Species.

Fossils. Would. Not. Be. Found. In. The. Layers.

With. The. Most. Simple. Forms. Below. More. Complex. Organisms.

Always. Differentiated. By. Region.

There. Is. No. Such. Evidence. Anywhere.

Therefore. No. Flood. :'(

(Deep cleansing breath.)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 17, 2011, 08:49:58 PM
That and the Earth is not flat. . . .

Years ago, inspired by the suggestion of another poster, I did a literal "back of the envelope" calculation based on the most forgiving requirements of both flood myths--allowing for the tallest peak to be the tallest in the Levant and not actually the world, for example.

Leaving aside the true objections of nogodsforme, the amount of water delivered in the time period specified would flatten mountain ranges.  "Where" this water came "from" and "where it went"--Ort cloud?  "Lol!"--is never explained, of course.  In one of the myths, the Earth is flat in a "bubble" in the cosmic waters so Elohim merely has to open the windows in the firmament above and the . . . well . . . trap doors to the "fountains of the deep." 

Where all this comes from, of course, is the frightful realization that if the stories are "wrong" all other prejudices and beliefs based on them become suspect.  That is the heart of Christian Fundamentalism: a willful blindness to evidence.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 09:53:44 PM
What you are close minded to is accepting something without proof.


Proof is for mathematicians and makers of whiskey.  What we want before being convinced of something is evidence.  Why?  Because "evidence" is that which indicates that the thing we're considering believing has anything to do with reality.  This isn't "closed-minded," it's just good mental hygiene.  You don't really believe every claim anybody makes do you?  If you get an email from someone claiming to be a Nigerian prince who will give you a million dollars if you send him your bank account information so he can use it to transfer his money out of Nigeria before a corrupt government gets it, so he can use it to Feed The Children, do you just fork over the information?


Here is a simple scenario. I am trying to sell or do a deal with someone. Information is sent by talking on the phone and sending written information and several times. However, I am not getting anywhere. So I get the person to agree to an meeting. I sign them up at the meeting. Why. What new evidence did they see.


When it comes to such things as talking snakes and global floods which fail to interrupt the construction of the Pyramid of Saqqara

So you have a date for the flood?
 

I think the keen atheist is an atheist as a default position. In other words other aspects of his life are the same, that is, no acceptance without proof.


OK, that sort of atheist would be consistent.  One who demanded high standards of critical thought WRT Christianity while accepting the validity of homeopathy without question would be a hypocrite.  Is that what you're getting at?


I would not call him a hypocrite but rather I would say it was very unlikely. Maybe we can get somewhere with this. Let's say we have a health problem and things are not going well with the doctor so the alternative health man goes on the agenda. At this point we know nothing about them. Thus we both start at "information/evidence" collecting and for the sake of the exercise we will assume we are collecting the same information. I think I will be having a meeting with the naturopath much ealier than you. I will go a lot more with "feeling" and thus will be there much earlier than you.

On the other hand there will be subjects where I go to extremes to gather information. Have you heard of Kolby profile or Kolby test. If not it is one of those things where it rates you in four different categories and it is very accurate. One of the four categories is called Fact Finding and I score maximum in that one. But another category is Quick Start where I am also very high. A third category is Follow Through and I am very low. With Follow Through there is a bit more to it than the name suggests but this purpose it follows the name. I reckon you would be high on Fact Finder and Follow Through but low on Quick Start. I won't worry about the four category here. A result is then obtained which is basically in the format of how you work or operate and things you will insist on doing.

If someone asked the high Fact Finder how to change the tyre on a car. The high Fact Finder will great detail and probably even include how to do it if the car is on an angle off to the side of the road. He will even cover what needs to be done if the jack won’t work. If the person asking is low Fact Find he will hate all this information coming here his way.

The religious/spiritual or whatever you might call us, accepts and also acts with far less evidence or proof and this applies to his life in general. Thus his position on the spritual is also a default position.


You're bypassing the ultimate issue here: what is real, and how do we know?  Either there is an actual reality, or there isn't.  If there isn't, then we're living in a solipsistic universe (or at least I am; the rest of you are figments of my imagination), and I suppose I can make up whatever l like and it becomes real.  If there is an actual reality, then whether we choose to apply critical thought (make our beliefs "pay their way" with evidence) or not has nothing to do with what is real.  If I say, "Well, I like the idea of flying saucers, so when it comes to flying saucers, I am going to accept and also act with far less evidence, so that means that 'flying saucers exist' is a default position for me," that does absolutely nothing to increase the probability that flying saucers actually exist.

What you're really saying here is "We religious/spiritual people don't give a damn about what's actually real or true.  We'll just decide to avoid looking too hard for truth in case our cherished beliefs should turn out to be false, and call our willful refusal to seek evidence a 'default position.'  'Cause wishing our religion is true makes it so, right?"


Not at all. We simply see things differently. For example, the fact that the moon and sun have the same apparent size from earth so as to give us a real nice eclipse is something that will make me think is something going on here. Now I don’t take that in isolation. But for you it is simply a case of that was just chance and so you move on.

But they/we/me don't accept everything. For example, myself and many others see churches or formal religions as just man made.



But why don't you accept everything?  On what basis do you choose which things to examine critically and which things to just accept?  Personal preference?  I hope you're not in any position which entails responsibility for other lives (pilot, doctor, engineer, etc.).  "I don't want to believe this little kid could have cancer, so I won't bother to do a biopsy on the tumor.  Plus it'll save her mom and dad the cost of the biopsy!"


“Feeling” Actually your comment on saving lives etc is not 100%. Many times the “saver” who gets the best results is one who can move fast without needing to get all the forms filled in and every last piece of information.

Many of us will also have different view points at the same time. That may at first seem like a contradiction but it is not. Our one consistent belief is the answer is some being or beings.



"The answer" has just gotta be some kind of magical human person, it's just gotta!  Well, why?  I mean, other than the fact that it would be awfully nice if we could use our social intelligence to negotiate, appease, beg, and cajole the Universe into doing what we'd like the way we can with other human beings.  As evolved social primates, we have a much greater degree of "social intelligence" for relating to other primates like ourselves (finding mates, appeasing the more powerful, dominating the less powerful, making alliances and deals, etc.) than the kind of intelligence we need to relate to a non-personal, naturalistic Universe.  It's much easier to become the most popular kid in school than it is to master calculus.  Not because the former is actually easier than the latter (ask anyone in the field of artificial intelligence--getting a computer to do calculus is much, much easier); it's because we have much better brain hardware for social intelligence than for higher mathematics.


Actually given the number of people who can master calculus and the number of people who can become leading politicians etc maybe the calculus is easier to master. But I know what you mean.

I find people who can master the calculus are not good at seeing a total concept. They have to bite off pieces bit by bit. In fact it is quite interesting sell such a person disability insurance, especially if you want to replace the policy they have. It is an exercise in policy wording and terms and conditions and it takes the calculus man forever to get there.

However, I have not said it has to be human like. Many times I have posted that the supernatural will be laws that exist outside our universe which would bring us back to pre Big Bang

That is the starting pont if you like. Just as your starting point is no beings of any type provide the answer. But sometimes you might think there is only one universe at other times your view could be there are many universes.


You're assuming that whatever arbitrary "starting point" we might choose actually matters when it comes to figuring out what is real.  Reality is what it is regardless of what cognitive procedures we adopt (unless solipsism is true, O figment of my imagination).  The only question is, will our cognitive procedures, our chosen starting point, etc. work to help provide us with an accurate model of reality?  I, for one, would never want to get heart surgery from someone who thought they could pick whatever "starting point" for the process they liked.


The starting point is due to both personality and what surrounds us which might be called evidence. The “evidence” that you can see and feel yourself sends you on the long search to get an answer that will match your calculus.

And with the cardiothoracic surgeon you might be surprised at just how much “gut feeling” is used.

Both sides also have their own bias in how they see evidence.



Yes, but the evidence itself, if it is genuine evidence of what reality is doing, isn't biased.  It just is.  A quasar 10 billion light-years away is a quasar 10 billion light-years away.  It has no "bias" against the notion that the Universe was created some time after the Sumerians invented beer.  It's just.  A quasar.  10 billion light-years away.  Which means: it look the light ten billion years to get here from there.


You missed the point. It is a fact that the moon has the same apparent size as the sun when viewed from earth. Both of us agree on that 100%. But as I said above you see that evidence as just another chance happening. I see it as another piece of evidence that makes me wonder.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 10:08:01 PM
Dinosaurs,
I very much know what I am talking about with medical education, quite a bit a more than you do.  But I am done with this BS because: A) it is absolutely irrelevant to the point at hand, B) you're wrong (but then again, you're trying to claim that the world was created in 6 days, so...) and C) I got better things to do than gt into nonsensical name calling contests with anonymous people on the Internet.  If you want to keep barking, have fun.  I'm done.


You obviously know something less than fuck all.

You told me I was full of bullshit as to the time to get to private practice medical specialist. Your claim of age of 27 is so fucking wrong it is unreal. As I said, put up or shut up. And did you find me some practicing cardiothoracic and neurosurgeons who are age 27 ;D ;D I even specified Australia which makes it easy to establish because of FRACS etc

But there is no point talking to someone who can't admit a mistake and where it is so clear. Your age 27 is like saying 3 + 5 =11 but what is amazing is you are happy with that and it is not as if the answer comes via some debate.

But I assume other atheists on the forum are not like you.

Don't waste your time responding to this post unless it is to admit you fucked up big time.
 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 11:06:30 PM
Kcrady,

I will skip a few points in this post because I think it would duplicate the posting I just did


Likewise, I don't know with 100% certainty that God or a god or gods etc. exist or existed.

But for me it seems more likely that God or gods are the solution to how all this got here.


On what basis?  And since God or gods are likely to be much more complex (greater intelligence, capabilities, etc.) than human beings or "all this," how did the God or gods get there?

Of course this question is what leads to a god or a set of laws outside our universe, either way that is supernatural.



One thing that often crossed my mind is that if we had another sense then the answer could be obvious. Imagine if you will that human life becomes extinct on earth and a bunch of very advanced aliens arrive. However, these aliens have possesed th sense of sight. Could you imagine the difficulties they would have with windows in buildings and cars. Why did these earthlings make all these structures weaker with this material etc



Since the aliens are "really advanced," and they're capable of interstellar travel, they would almost certainly have instruments that can detect light even if they don't have eyes or any equivalent on their bodies.  Just like we have radio telescopes that can pick up radio waves, X-ray telescopes that can detect X-rays, gravimetric sensors that can detect distortions in gravitational fields, etc., the aliens would have instruments that can detect light and translate it into sonar signals or whatever they use.


You have missed the point completely. I am not discussing whether such aliens could detect light. I have assumed they can’t for the example

If the aliens suddenly gained the sense of sight then windows in the car, the building etc. would cease to be a mystery.


OK. You know Apollo 11 landed on the moon. How do you know that. What real evidence do you have except what you have read or seen on TV etc.

But you are 100% certain Apollo 11 went to the moon but with zero real evidence.


What do you mean, "zero evidence?"  There are Moon rocks in the Smithsonian!


How do know they came from the moon.

Note:  I used Apollo/Hoax and an example. I am not a follower as I am very keen space program follower.


 Then, let's see...there's the tens or hundreds of thousands of people who worked on the Apollo project including a couple guys named "Buzz Aldrin" and "Neil Armstrong." 


I have met Eugene Cernan, spent 30 minutes with him. How I do I know he was not lying.

Do have any direct evidence man landed on the moon or are you relying on other people.


Anybody with a high-school education in mathematics and the willingness to put forth the effort can do the calculations that will show that the Saturn V rocket was capable of bringing the astronauts to the Moon and back.  You can go--again, to the Smithsonian, and see the re-entry capsule the astronauts returned to Earth in.  There's all the TV footage.  There's the fact that the Russians, with whom we were in a "space race" at the time, and who had their own space program and tracking systems, didn't call foul.  And so on.  All kinds of evidence.


The command module is not what landed on the moon. And even so it would only prove that it re entered at bit blow escape velocity


You are 100% certain because it all seems possible and there is no way you could see a conspiracy being pulled off.




Well, let's say 99.9999% certain. 


Why not a 100%


From my perspective it is impossible to understand how you can so clearly eliminate a superior being or beings from the equation.



Because the...you know...actual equations can model the behavior of our Cosmos from the scale of billions of light years down to the probability functions of sub-atomic particles, and do it accurately, without needing to include any variables to account for the existence and/or action of any Invisible Magic Persons.


Sounds like the magic person did a good job



Edit: Oh yeah: WRT the evidence for the Moon landing, one of the things that the astronauts did while they were there was put up a reflector, so that people on Earth could bounce lasers off of it and use that to precisely measure the distance between the Earth and the Moon.  So, anybody with the right equipment and skill can bounce a laser off that reflector right now, today.  Russia, China, Richard Hoagland, anybody.


How do you know. Have you done this yourself?

It seems all your “evidence” is hearsay, what you read or what you saw on TV.

I can match all of that from the hoax side. I guess that is why you are not 100% :D







Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 11:23:11 PM
I have a background in earth science. I will try to remain calm and I will speak slowly so everyone, including JT812 understands. (Deep calming breath.)

If. It. Was. Caused. By. Magic.

It. Would. Still. Have. Had. To. Leave. Evidence. Behind.


Not so. If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic. It's very simple. If it is magic it does not have to meet normal criteria. If it has to meet such criteria it is no longer magic.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 11:28:28 PM

This is probably difficult maths for you but if you work out the surface area of the world, and multiply that by the height of Mount Ararat, the amount of water is something like 100 times the amount of water presently on the planet. Where has it all gone?


That's for the atheists to find out ;D ;D

And we do have big floods here in Australia at the moment. Huge.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 17, 2011, 11:56:08 PM
Not so. If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic. It's very simple. If it is magic it does not have to meet normal criteria. If it has to meet such criteria it is no longer magic.

I think this qualifies as the new stupidest thing ever uttered by a theist on this site, in my experience. Congratulations are in order.

There's nothing to say that magic doesn't leave evidence. It may not have to meet normal criteria, but that doesn't in anyway preclude leaving evidence that the event took place. This of course assumes that it even was magic. Which is equally stupid to suggest since you have no way of justifying the claim. Also considering the huge number of natural laws that would have to be violated and the massive amount of reality and history that would have to be altered to make a biblical flood work.........basically you're just an idiot to even make that suggestion.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 17, 2011, 11:58:17 PM
After having been on this forum since January 12 to say I am impressed by the incredible amount of research the atheists have done  and continue to do would be a great understatment.

Given the research is huge and ongoing it must be hard to prove this god did not exist.

Of course I might be wrong and your research is only small and stopped long ago.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:06:51 AM
Not so. If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic. It's very simple. If it is magic it does not have to meet normal criteria. If it has to meet such criteria it is no longer magic.


I think this qualifies as the new stupidest thing ever uttered by a theist on this site, in my experience. Congratulations are in order.

There's nothing to say that magic doesn't leave evidence.


But if evidence has to be left then it is not magic.

I will try and make this very simple for you.

Just like you or I, God can burn some Hydogen and water will be left.

But He does not have to obey the natural laws. He can change them, cancel them, suspend them and also limit those changes to a local area.





Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 12:08:57 AM
And a Magical Being that could make the Earth flat, have plants evolve prior to the creation of stars, raise humans on his flat Earth, decide to destroy them with a very impractical method, then erase all traces of it--including turning a flat disk into a sphere--care not about children suffering?

Someone asked about how you can "prove a negative"--Dinosaur just proved his god is not good.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:12:18 AM
decide to destroy them with a very impractical method, --J.D.

I assume you are referring to the flood.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 12:15:43 AM
And a Magical Being that could make the Earth flat, have plants evolve prior to the creation of stars, raise humans on his flat Earth, decide to destroy them with a very impractical method, then erase all traces of it--including turning a flat disk into a sphere--care not about children suffering?

You forgot the part about where after he destroys them, he recreates every single human civilization that existed at that time. Recreated all of the people and cultures that were destroyed exactly as they were before the flood so that all of the empires and nations that existed at the time could carry on as if nothing had happened. 

Not to mention about a dozen other flaws that I can think of just off the top of my head.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jim on January 18, 2011, 12:22:51 AM
@ Alzael, Doctor X:  I think Dinosaurs has a point.  Magic can do just about anything the human mind can conjure, which is a lot.  For instance, flood the earth (because that is the only way for a magical being to get rid of us pesky humans... I guess?) and then make the water disappear.  I could think of better ways for magic to do its dirty work, but never mind that.  Hey, the earth could have been flat, once, too.  Maybe it was made round, later.  By magic.

@ Dinosaurs: talking about magic that is invisible and leaves no trace is pretty weak.  The reason why is because you've got nothing to back it up with.  All the evidence for such a thing is nowhere to be seen (as if by magic). So, magic gets a few lines in one book written by goatherders, but there is evidence of never a full-scale global flood everywhere on the globe.  That's actual evidence for NO BIG FLOOD: the shape of the land, the quantity of water, the whole lot.  The score is not in your favor.

But, you're siding with magic, anyway?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 12:28:42 AM
You forgot the part about where after he destroys them, he recreates every single human civilization that existed at that time. Recreated all of the people and cultures that were destroyed exactly as they were before the flood so that all of the empires and nations that existed at the time could carry on as if nothing had happened.

Of course!  He also makes you think we have been around for 100,000s of years! (http://i170.photobucket.com/albums/u264/DoctorX_photos/Smilies/freakingout.gif)

Lice (http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/01/110106164616.htm)

He can do all that . . . but not help Little Suzy with the metastatic osteosarcoma because . . . fuck her, right?

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jim on January 18, 2011, 12:30:09 AM
He can do all that . . . but not help Little Suzy with the metastatic osteosarcoma because . . . fuck her, right?

Maybe magic is like that.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 12:34:17 AM
@ Alzael, Doctor X:  I think Dinosaurs has a point.  Magic can do just about anything the human mind can conjure, which is a lot.

I think not, for he has painted himself into a corner, and a particularly nasty corner with pealing paper, urine stains, and a slightly imperceptible but persistent sent of mackerel.

By appealing to "magic" ala Lucy Lawless' "Wizard" he then must explain--since his Big Daddy can do such extraordinary things--his FAILure to act now.  This brings us right back to the original video . . . the Genesis of this board: why not heal an amputee? 

Like . . . Little Suzy?

If he wants to continue to play sophomoric games such as "how do you KNOW your penis is still there when you let go of it" he will get nowhere.  As I remind people who play the "imagination" card, when my fist pummels their face into a fine goo, their imagination will behave as if their face is being pounded into a fine goo.  It is like arguments on whether or not you see the same color I see when you see red: we actually do not . . . but we will agree that red is red and not blue.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 12:36:20 AM
Maybe magic is like that.

Which brings us right back to my point--which is mine--that it is then not "good" by any relevant definition of "good" you wish to offer, and not "a small village with a majestic view of the Nene Valley."

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 12:36:28 AM
I have a background in earth science. I will try to remain calm and I will speak slowly so everyone, including JT812 understands. (Deep calming breath.)

If. It. Was. Caused. By. Magic.

It. Would. Still. Have. Had. To. Leave. Evidence. Behind.


Not so. If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic. It's very simple. If it is magic it does not have to meet normal criteria. If it has to meet such criteria it is no longer magic.
There is a billion times more evidence for man landing on the moon than there is for ANY god
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:37:03 AM

@ Dinosaurs: talking about magic that is invisible and leaves no trace is pretty weak. 

It's strong enough for countless websites in opposition to be produced, you blokes to research your hearts out. Fuck me, they even had a huge seminar for it in Australia last year, which aslo doubled for a collection of Australia's leading left wingers ;D They even had their messiah Dawkins as the lead speaker.

English atheists decided get the Atheis Bus and Australian atheists copied that.

It was responsible for this website.

Poweful stuff this God chap. ;D ;D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 12:37:19 AM
@ Alzael, Doctor X:  I think Dinosaurs has a point.  Magic can do just about anything the human mind can conjure, which is a lot.  For instance, flood the earth (because that is the only way for a magical being to get rid of us pesky humans... I guess?) and then make the water disappear.  I could think of better ways for magic to do its dirty work, but never mind that.  Hey, the earth could have been flat, once, too.  Maybe it was made round, later.  By magic.

Unless he's suddenly understood how magic works than he doesn't have a point. Without knowing how magic works he can't make a  claim as to what it does or doesn't do. He's simply saying out of whole cloth that magic doesn't leave evidence. But unless he can define what magic or how it works, it makes the statement about seven flavours of stupid.

For example:
"If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic."

He is defining the rules of magic. That magic does not leave evidence. That magic does not have to meet any normal criteria. This is just him talking out of his ass. He has no idea how magic works or by what laws it operates at (if any). Most magic traditionally in primitive cultures operates by laws, supernatural laws, but still laws. Saying that magic can do anything the mind can conjure makes an assumption about how magic works that you don't know is true or not.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 12:39:55 AM
Maybe magic is like that.

Maybe a lot of things are true. But that doesn't mean you can claim to know the rules of something that you can't even actually describe or show exists. Which is exactly what he's pitifully trying to do. Set up the rules for magic in such a way that they serve his case.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 12:41:47 AM
@ Alzael, Doctor X:  I think Dinosaurs has a point.  Magic can do just about anything the human mind can conjure, which is a lot.  For instance, flood the earth (because that is the only way for a magical being to get rid of us pesky humans... I guess?) and then make the water disappear.  I could think of better ways for magic to do its dirty work, but never mind that.  Hey, the earth could have been flat, once, too.  Maybe it was made round, later.  By magic.

Unless he's suddenly understood how magic works than he doesn't have a point. Without knowing how magic works he can't make a  claim as to what it does or doesn't do. He's simply saying out of whole cloth that magic doesn't leave evidence. But unless he can define what magic or how it works, it makes the statement about seven flavours of stupid.

For example:
"If it had to leave evidence, then it would not be magic."

He is defining the rules of magic. That magic does not leave evidence. That magic does not have to meet any normal criteria. This is just him talking out of his ass. He has no idea how magic works or by what laws it operates at (if any). Most magic traditionally in primitive cultures operates by laws, supernatural laws, but still laws. Saying that magic can do anything the mind can conjure makes an assumption about how magic works that you don't know is true or not.
Are we talking illusions or actual magic? we can explain how we use illusion for magic.....but to prove "magic" would be near immpossible if it was "real"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:42:17 AM
Alzael

God is supernatural.

1) He does not have to leave evidence or

2) He can leave evidence that is misleading or

3) He can leave evidence of a normally expected type of evidene

He can do what He likes.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 12:49:17 AM
Are we talking illusions or actual magic? we can explain how we use illusion for magic.....but to prove "magic" would be near immpossible if it was "real"

Actual magic. At least I assume that's what Dino is talking about since he's trying to use it to justify altering reality on a global scale. Several times over (at least ten times would be required off the top of my head). And he has to go to these lengths of idiocy just to allow for even the remotest possibility that the flood was true.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 12:50:08 AM
Which makes "magic" a useless appeal--you cannot confirm it, test it, and, worse, you cannot rely or predict with it.  Returning to my old saw the "I am Snogging Nicole Kidman Example" [All rights reserved.--Ed.], I can claim that OH GOD RIGHT NOW . . . HOLD ON > > > YES!!! SURRENDER DOROTHY I have Nicole on my lap.

What?  Evidence?  Well, she is invisible--and does anyone really want to see me naked on a video cam . . . can you afford the charges?  Oh, but I only appear clothed . . . and the fact that Nicole is speaking, now, to a "United Friends of the Iguana Anus Parasite Ball" in Sidney, Australia is EASILY explained by the fact that that is a "Magic Nicole" who does not really exist but by all you PUNY EARTHLING TECHNOLOGY will SEEM to be real!

Blah . . . blah . . . blah.

You can make no predictions with it.  You cannot test it.  It is a sophomoric argument most dispense with just before they realize Objectivism is an attempt to make narcissism a philosophy and there are better beers than Budweiser . . . some of them are actually beers.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 12:52:52 AM
Real magic is as provable and realistic as his god is Dino why are you digging yourself deeper?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 12:55:24 AM
Which makes "magic" a useless appeal--you cannot confirm it, test it, and, worse, you cannot rely or predict with it.  Returning to my old saw the "I am Snogging Nicole Kidman Example" [All rights reserved.--Ed.], I can claim that OH GOD RIGHT NOW . . . HOLD ON > > > YES!!! SURRENDER DOROTHY I have Nicole on my lap.

In fairness, if we were talking about magic in the sense of spells and incantations as they've been commonly practiced you could probably meet some of those criteria. It wouldn't hold up in terms of evidence, but you could confirm, test, and predict with it to a degree, since there are set rules and guidelines for the procedures and what can and cannot be done.

However he's using magic as a "it can do anyting" pill. Which makes it, as you said, completely uselss. And, as I said, really stupid.

I don't know if JT812 is going to post anything else here or not. But if JT has nothing more to say then I vote we just close the thread. There's no useful reason to talk to Dino since he's really just a bad parody of a theist.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:58:41 AM
Alzael

Just for moment assume God existed, created the universe.

What limitation do think He would have?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 12:58:49 AM
Which makes "magic" a useless appeal--you cannot confirm it, test it, and, worse, you cannot rely or predict with it.  Returning to my old saw the "I am Snogging Nicole Kidman Example" [All rights reserved.--Ed.], I can claim that OH GOD RIGHT NOW . . . HOLD ON > > > YES!!! SURRENDER DOROTHY I have Nicole on my lap.

In fairness, if we were talking about magic in the sense of spells and incantations as they've been commonly practiced you could probably meet some of those criteria. It wouldn't hold up in terms of evidence, but you could confirm, test, and predict with it to a degree, since there are set rules and guidelines for the procedures and what can and cannot be done.

However he's using magic as a "it can do anyting" pill. Which makes it, as you said, completely uselss. And, as I said, really stupid.
Deja vu, dreams, visions all can give you insight but they are only a reflection of what is going on in life,hardly "magic" And if that is the only thing Dino has he may have reached the lowest point in this discussion
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 01:03:07 AM
Deja vu, dreams, visions all can give you insight but they are only a reflection of what is going on in life,hardly "magic" And if that is the only thing Dino has he may have reached the lowest point in this discussion

I was referring to actual spells and rituals. Not that they're anymore real, but if you study such things, a lot of those could be subjected to an actual process of research and study like Doc X outlined.

And I actually thought he reached the lowest point in the discussion a while ago.


Modbreak:  fixed quote
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 01:26:21 AM
I meant ,,,,he resorted to it using the "its unexplainable magic"
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 18, 2011, 01:42:59 AM
Here is a simple scenario. I am trying to sell or do a deal with someone. Information is sent by talking on the phone and sending written information and several times. However, I am not getting anywhere. So I get the person to agree to an meeting. I sign them up at the meeting. Why. What new evidence did they see.

Sounds irrelevant to the example.

Some people just prefer face to face discussions, some people cave in under interpersonal pressure.

So you have a date for the flood?


Many of the people who claim the flood occurred do. They claim that it occurred with human history.

Not at all. We simply see things differently. For example, the fact that the moon and sun have the same apparent size from earth so as to give us a real nice eclipse is something that will make me think is something going on here. Now I don’t take that in isolation. But for you it is simply a case of that was just chance and so you move on.

It doesn't matter how you "see it". It either is or it isn't. Either the relative size and position of the moon versus the sun is a coincidence or it isn't.

And the moons orbit is increasing, so I would say that it is a coincidence.

“Feeling” Actually your comment on saving lives etc is not 100%. Many times the “saver” who gets the best results is one who can move fast without needing to get all the forms filled in and every last piece of information.

Doesn't answer the question, plus it is anecdotal and without support.

Actually given the number of people who can master calculus and the number of people who can become leading politicians etc maybe the calculus is easier to master. But I know what you mean.

Strawman. The most popular kid in school is not a leading politician but even that is irrelevant.

Our brains are wired for social interaction, not mathematics.

We attribute all kinds of events to external personal agents because that is how we are built.

I find people who can master the calculus are not good at seeing a total concept. They have to bite off pieces bit by bit. In fact it is quite interesting sell such a person disability insurance, especially if you want to replace the policy they have. It is an exercise in policy wording and terms and conditions and it takes the calculus man forever to get there.

Massive generalization, again.

However, I have not said it has to be human like. Many times I have posted that the supernatural will be laws that exist outside our universe which would bring us back to pre Big Bang

Irrelevant. It does not have to be human it just has to be an entity.

The starting point is due to both personality and what surrounds us which might be called evidence. The “evidence” that you can see and feel yourself sends you on the long search to get an answer that will match your calculus.

And with the cardiothoracic surgeon you might be surprised at just how much “gut feeling” is used.

And without years of training, studying, working under other skilled surgeons how useful would that gut instinct be? How accurate would it be?

A correct guess backed up by a vast amount of experience is not unusual.

Plus that's anecdotal and without any support. How often does such a person talk about when their guesses were wrong?

You missed the point. It is a fact that the moon has the same apparent size as the sun when viewed from earth. Both of us agree on that 100%. But as I said above you see that evidence as just another chance happening. I see it as another piece of evidence that makes me wonder.

Given that the moon's orbital radius is increasing all the time, I don't.

When I'm reading you posts what I see are guesses, generalizations, arguments from authority and incredulity.


Quote from: modbreak

Unnecessary quoting removed.  ksm, please refrain from excessive quoting.  Thanks.
~Screwtape
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 02:11:47 AM

Given that the moon's orbital radius is increasing all the time, I don't.


How long ago did the moon and sun have the same apparent size and when will they no longer have the same apparent size.

I won't respond to the rest unless Kcrady does not respond.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jeff7 on January 18, 2011, 02:25:16 AM
@Dinosaurs:

Doctor X already brought it up, sorta, in another response, but since I have the book nearby, I think Carl Sagan makes quite the excellent analogy/statement of this point.

Let us suppose a friend tells you he has a dragon in his garage. Taking you to his garage, he waves his hands about vaguely. There's plenty of stuff in the garage, but no dragon. But of course, this is an invisible dragon, you see. So, them, you propose the idea of spreading flour on the floor to get the dragon's footprints. Excellent idea - except, this dragon floats. Hm.

Infared sensor to detect the dragon's fire? It's heatless.
Spray pain the dragon to make it visible? The dragon is incorporeal, and it won't stick.
And so on.

As Sagan asks, "What's the difference between an invisible, incorporeal, floating dragon who spits heatless fire and no fire at all?" Very certainly, the dragon could quite possibly exist. There is no way to prove the dragon does not exist, as seen by the numerous attempts to find such. Best evidence (the fact that there's no evidence of such dragon, to our current knowledge dragons do not exist, etc.) suggest the contrary, in fact.

Your assertion (inconsistencies with the God of the bible based on one or another's opinions notwithstanding) God could very well have done all that, changing the evidence etc. etc. might, supposedly, be true. Problem being, we can only go with what current knowledge tells us, while working to expand such at the same time. Unfortunately, unless God Himself comes down at some point to tell us 'oh hey, guys, guess what I did one drunken night, man, that rearranging everything to fuck with your scientists in the future, wooo, man!' or some such, such statements as those about God and evidence are useless. (And again, seeming rather inconsistent with usually suggested biblegod.)

(..in my head, this post made a lot more sense, but seems to have lost some form upon actually typing it. Hm.)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 03:01:19 AM
@Dinosaurs:


Doctor X already brought it up, sorta, in another response, but since I have the book nearby, I think Carl Sagan makes quite the excellent analogy/statement of this point.

Let us suppose a friend tells you he has a dragon in his garage. Taking you to his garage, he waves his hands about vaguely. There's plenty of stuff in the garage, but no dragon. But of course, this is an invisible dragon, you see. So, them, you propose the idea of spreading flour on the floor to get the dragon's footprints. Excellent idea - except, this dragon floats. Hm.

Infared sensor to detect the dragon's fire? It's heatless.
Spray pain the dragon to make it visible? The dragon is incorporeal, and it won't stick.
And so on.

As Sagan asks, "What's the difference between an invisible, incorporeal, floating dragon who spits heatless fire and no fire at all?" Very certainly, the dragon could quite possibly exist. There is no way to prove the dragon does not exist, as seen by the numerous attempts to find such. Best evidence (the fact that there's no evidence of such dragon, to our current knowledge dragons do not exist, etc.) suggest the contrary, in fact.

Your assertion (inconsistencies with the God of the bible based on one or another's opinions notwithstanding) God could very well have done all that, changing the evidence etc. etc. might, supposedly, be true. Problem being, we can only go with what current knowledge tells us, while working to expand such at the same time. Unfortunately, unless God Himself comes down at some point to tell us 'oh hey, guys, guess what I did one drunken night, man, that rearranging everything to fuck with your scientists in the future, wooo, man!' or some such, such statements as those about God and evidence are useless. (And again, seeming rather inconsistent with usually suggested biblegod.)

(..in my head, this post made a lot more sense, but seems to have lost some form upon actually typing it. Hm.)

Jeff,

Most people who believe something supernatural is behind this whole show basically have that belief because of what they see around them. It just seems impossible without a creator or some supernatural.

Noah’s Ark is not the cause of the belief or the proof of the belief.

With your dragon, I would equate the missing footprints, no spitting fire etc of the dragon to Noah’s Ark. But lets say around the suburbs there are dogs ripped to pieces, a horse looks like a T Rex bit etc. I would equate the latter to the heavens and all the things that your side of the debates writes off as chance or coincidence.

So for people like me everything around us adds up to God. On the other hand everything around you adds up to no God.

With that in mind you can see the view of the Ark will be different for each of us.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: natlegend on January 18, 2011, 03:06:38 AM
Dinosaurs:
Quote
And we do have big floods here in Australia at the moment. Huge.

What the fuck does that have to do with anything? How dare you even mention it?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 03:14:27 AM
Dinosaurs:
Quote
And we do have big floods here in Australia at the moment. Huge.


What the fuck does that have to do with anything? How dare you even mention it?

What's your problem?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 03:57:44 AM
However he's using magic as a "it can do anyting" pill. Which makes it, as you said, completely uselss. And, as I said, really stupid.

ExACTly!

Heck, I declare--through Magic--that I am kicking everyone's asses on this forum.  YOU ALL LOSE!! Ha! Ha!

Care for rematch?

You lose again!  AHA!HA!

You do not notice this because of . . . MAGIC!

It amazes me that anyone actually buys such rationalization.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 04:00:38 AM
How long ago did the moon and sun have the same apparent size and when will they no longer have the same apparent size.

To whom, son?

To whom?

Quote
I won't respond to the rest unless Kcrady does not respond.

So if kcrady does not respond to you you will cease posting?

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 04:13:57 AM
Doctor X already brought it up, sorta, in another response, but since I have the book nearby, I think Carl Sagan makes quite the excellent analogy/statement of this point.

The reason I eschew Sagan's example is because his straw opponent does not define what a dragon is.  As a venerable teacher of the arts martial in Hong Kong likes to quip: "'Dragon style?'  Dragons are mythical creatures!  You practice a mythical self-defense?!"

Which is rather the point: Sagan's opponent is able to move the goal posts, we have not established what his claim is that he demands his opponents refute.  This--in the other thread--is why Randi's procedure with testing claims worked: it forced the claimant to define exactly what he will do.  As Randi will affirm, logically, that the guy FAILs does not "prove" he cannot do it--that he has not done it or will not do it--it proved he could not do it when he stated he could.

I use the "adult male African elephant in your rectal vault" example [Pat. Pend.--Ed.] because:

1. It amuses me.
2. It is defined--we have a definition for "rectal vault," "adult male African elephant," "in," and, of course, "spray cheese."

I have actually had someone try to debate me on whether or not the rectal vault can contain an adult male African elephant!  :?  "How do you know an adult male African elephant cannot fit in my rectum?!"

You can imagine the temptation to respond to that!  I thought the example is rather obvious.  However, yes, we rather do have information on the capacity and . . . er . . . "failure" of human rectums.  Notice I did not state SuperHuman Rectum--so, no, you do not have the ability for your rectum to . . . well . . . "expand" and all of that.

Now this may seem silly, but the point remains: you can disprove a negative if you define exactly what we are suppose to disprove.

[ZZZZZzzzzzzzzz--Ed.]

This is why I held Dino's feetsies to the fire on identifying his god.  I rather think he knows he is screwed--he tried to appeal to the general "god of the KJV" but found out that would not work.

So he has consistently fled from the question.

As he flees from all attempts to offer specifics.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: natlegend on January 18, 2011, 04:39:44 AM
Dinosaurs:
Quote
And we do have big floods here in Australia at the moment. Huge.


What the fuck does that have to do with anything? How dare you even mention it?

What's your problem?


Don't you dare compare your mythical worldwide flood to the very real misery that is being felt by thousands of Australians right now.


Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 04:44:53 AM
(http://www.freethought-forum.com/forum/images/smilies/_iloveaus__by_zacthetoad.gif)

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 04:47:36 AM
Natlegend

If you read properly you would see it is not a comparison.

But I suggest you go back in the thread and look at Graybeard's post.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: natlegend on January 18, 2011, 05:11:53 AM
Natlegend

If you read properly you would see it is not a comparison.


Then why bring it up?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 05:23:00 AM
Natlegend

If you read properly you would see it is not a comparison.




Then why bring it up?

Mentioned in passing.

Ask Graybeard why he mentioned it.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 18, 2011, 05:34:39 AM
So, which car is the true car?
You have missed the point. The point being that lots of analysis might have been done by someone but they don't need to write pages about it. As I said with the car example the colour pulled him over the line. In other words after careful analysis both cars were so close the choice of car came down to something very small.
No, you missed my point. Your criteria had nothing to do with veracity if you didn't ask your colleagues whether the car was the true one and they substantiated it. At best, it was a very poorly chosen analogy.
Also, you haven't shown much in the way of analysis.

That's too hard and if they are not in any way science minded you have to waste your fucking time explaining about the laser and mirror.

BUT, they rapidly appreciate that a big conspiracy is not something you try 6 more times.
I can get into the "they're too lazy to try" camp. You're right, it's not likely to convinve them either.
But who, for instance, said anything about six more times? They could've filmed it once and then released the footage over the years. Also, they did risk it once, why wouldn't they again? The CIA got their fingers burned in most of their large-scale covert operations, and still they did it again and again. This is quite well-documented. Nothing to show that conspirators aren't idiots, either.
Point being, I can readily think of any number of reasons why they would continue. If I don't buy the laser, I'm not buying vague speculations about motivations of people who keep their actions hidden by definition. I can move goalposts numerous times without sacrificing plausibility. Credibility is another matter.

Quote from: Dinosaurs
Evidence is in the eye of the beholder. Which is precisely why people (well, unless the topic is religion or something)
The topics on this site are religion.
Yeah no shit. That was exactly the problem I was talking about. People do their very best cross-referencing what I've seen called "hearsay" if they want accurate results. But when religion is concerned, this is sidestepped in favor of "it was magic, natch, natch" or "it's faith" or "it feels right" or "X people agree with me" or some such.

I've done all this (and I'm sure dinos has too) and I'm still a Christian. I looked at the evidence from the side of atheism and theism (more specifically Christianity). I looked at the evidence and asked other people about what they believed.
See, belief is already an interpretation. You don't ask them what their interpretation is, you ask them what they see, so you can get the facts first and thenform a solid basis for interpretations. One might think it'd be clear you also ask people who arrive at different interpretations, and people who have never heard any interpretations whatsoever to eliminate bias. Oh, and then check your interpretations to the best of your ability.
I hold it as fact that no evidence can be used to link anything logically to god. I can concede that calling that a fact is wrong if you show evidence that can be used to substantiate the opposite - cold hard facts everybody can agree on. Not interpretations.
I was talking about the eye, wasn't I? Not the brain.

Quote
I saw that Christians had experienced something. So I talked to other Christians and they confirmed. So I looked at more and more stories of life change and saw in these cases that my interpretation and experience was the same as many people and therefore not just a personal delusion or misconception.
Such as this. People are having incompatible spiritual experiences all the time. They can be attributed to a great many things, and in fact they have been attributed and causally linked to brain states, endogenous drugs, and other quirky phenomena. By "beholders looking from further away". Objectively, in lab conditions and in the field. Many can be artificially induced. And demonstrably the experiences' interpretations hinge heavily on cultural and personal presuppositions.
This is exactly what I meant when I said that evidence is not therefore evidence for your interpretation, even if it seems to make sense. The question is, how and why does it make sense? Gut feeling doesn't begin to qualify.

Quote
And the true/ demonstrable argument doesn't hold up. Let's look at science! Those who believe in the Singularity have demonstrable evidence that they believe is true. If they talk to other people then there will be many people who confirm that they are correct. They can give demonstrable data for what they believe is true. And then there's those who believe in multiple dimensions. If they asked other people, there would be many who confirmed that they are correct.
This is ... completely beside the point?
I was saying that other people are asked what they see. Not only what they have already deduced, whether logically or not. When finding out what's hard fact, you don't go around asking for hypotheses. What is this, empirical democracy? Get the facts first, confirm them as best you can; then form a hypothesis and compare to others.
All I said was that there is no such thing as "demonstrable to someone". It's either demonstrable or it isn't. People may of course be wrong if they think something's demonstrable but "demonstrable" is quite clearly defined. If you have evidence for X and X later turns out to be bogus, then what you thought was evidence for X wasn't really evidence for X, now was it? You just thought it was. This happens all the time in science and elsewhere. Rules of conduct are in place that allow and in fact necessitate this to happen.
In the case of the flood, what appears to be evidence for the YECs scientists can gut it with what appears to be much, much more evidence for old Earth. So far YEC's haven't even managed to point out inconsistencies. While we're at it, scientists can use their interpretation of the data to find oil fields, build nuclear reactors, and construct genomes from scratch. What confirmation does that god thing have for any kind of accuracy?

(The "singularity" is not something that exists btw. It's an expression meaning some state where our explanatory powers break down. You can't have any more or less evidence for a singularity than you can have evidence for a mathematical problem. There are cultural singularities, technological singularites, black hole singularities, purely mathematical singularities, all quite different from the big bang singularity.
Believing in multiple dimensions should not pose a problem since we seem to live in four of them. For the time being, adding some more seems to solve some problems. It's hardly the end-all be-all theory (as none of them are) and is in fact disputed. But that's beside the point as physicists agree on the evidence - which was the entire point of my rant. But not on high-level interpretations beyond perception - which were not.)

Quote
They could give demonstrable evidence and data for their models. They both have demonstrable evidence for what they believe to be true but both are wrong.
As long as they don't go around touting it as the absolute truth, what of it? Maybe they got it wrong - their interpretation mind you, not the evidence. (Which just stresses the importance of making sure evidence is in fact factual.) We know so much now it takes decades to find out if an educated guess doesn't pan out. So if you have evidence calling into doubt those interpretations or an alternative explanation consistent with the evidence, go on and publish them. Unless you forgot to carry a 1 somewhere, scientists will be jazzed. Until then, they seem to have a lot more substantiation than "feels right".
And again, they aren't arguing about the evidence, though they may argue where it points. That's "argue" with "arguments".

Quote
So even if demonstrable evidence can/cannot be provided for the case of a God (which I believe it can but), does it matter? Because demonstrable evidence can be provided for a lot of things that aren't true.
All evidence is demonstrable by definition. If it's not demonstrable it's not evidence. Mathematical models or deductions are not evidence. Whether evidence can be used as evidence for something specific is another thing entirely.
If a thing is not true, the failure is in the interpretation or perception of the evidence, not in the evidence. To make sure this isn't that much of a problem as it clearly can be, see my entire post. And it's far from a perfect system, people being people.

Oh, and interpretations are not equally valid just because they're interpretations, either. It's basically the same argument. You follow lines of thinking that demonstrably lead to more demonstrably accurate results. You follow logical deductions based on objectified data, you get GPS. That validates the merits of your interpretation (in terms of accuracy if not veracity) and the methods that were used to arrive at it (in terms of workability) - maybe to a limited extent, but at least, hey, we got GPS out of it, so it's more accurate than Newtonian mechanics.
How do religous people arrive at their interpretations and how can those be confirmed as something else than brainfarts? That is the distinguishing factor.



It is a fact that the moon has the same apparent size as the sun when viewed from earth. Both of us agree on that 100%. But as I said above you see that evidence as just another chance happening. I see it as another piece of evidence that makes me wonder.
Quoting myself:
Another funny thing: neither the earth's nor the moon's orbit are circular, so the appearant sizes of both objects change when seen from Earth.
The sun's appearent diameter varies between 31.6–32.7 minutes and the moon's between 29.3-34.1. So sometimes the moon appears bigger then the sun and vice versa (and no, their mean angular sizes don't match either). Hell, the variance of the moon's appearent size is noticeable with the naked eye. Also, total and annular eclipses (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Annular_eclipse#Types).
Also, it's not "evidence of chance". It's just chance. See, chance is not an entity, it's statistics. Its not true or wrong, it's a mathematical model. We may be wrong about it not being a planned occurence, if someone finds evidence that seems to point to the contrary we could at least consider it. Your opinion does not qualify.

Bonus ratios:
moon (small) : sun (small) = 31.6 : 29.3 = 1.08
moon (large) : sun (large) = 32.7 : 34.1 = 0.96
moon (small) : sun (large) = 31.6 : 34.1 = 0.93
moon (large) : sun (small) = 32.7 : 29.3 = 1.12

Professional photographers us astronomical calculators to predict when the sun and moon will appear particularly impressive due due to proximity .



Unless he's suddenly understood how magic works than he doesn't have a point. Without knowing how magic works he can't make a  claim as to what it does or doesn't do. He's simply saying out of whole cloth that magic doesn't leave evidence. But unless he can define what magic or how it works, it makes the statement about seven flavours of stupid.
^^^
This.
It's an inadmissible statement under the same criteria he's using. To put a little spin on it, the logical conclusion would be that the flood never appeared to happen even to those caught up in it. It doesn't leave evidence, see. Of course Dino doesn't say that, that'd be stupid.
As I heavily implied in the other thread Dino prominently features in, he's making a "strong" case that if Shmoople exists he can do flarg. Oh, and there's no tangible evidence of any flarging because that's just how Shmoople wants is.

How this "looking at the same thing differently" continues to carry weight I'll never know. Since there's nothing to be observed in the case of the flood by Dino's own definition, but still it happened for sure.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 18, 2011, 05:44:20 AM

Given that the moon's orbital radius is increasing all the time, I don't.


How long ago did the moon and sun have the same apparent size and when will they no longer have the same apparent size.

I won't respond to the rest unless Kcrady does not respond.

The rate is about 3.8cm per year.

But I have no idea how much closer the moon has been, and over what time frame (though I guess 4.5 billion years?)

http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=294 (http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=294) - about 500 million years.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 06:02:00 AM


The rate is about 3.8cm per year.

But I have no idea how much closer the moon has been, and over what time frame (though I guess 4.5 billion years?)

http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=294 (http://curious.astro.cornell.edu/question.php?number=294) - about 500 million years.

So it just happens to be at the right distance during man's presence on Earth so he could see the eclipse.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 06:10:53 AM
That's too hard and if they are not in any way science minded you have to waste your fucking time explaining about the laser and mirror.

BUT, they rapidly appreciate that a big conspiracy is not something you try 6 more times.



I can get into the "they're too lazy to try" camp. You're right, it's not likely to convinve them either.
But who, for instance, said anything about six more times? They could've filmed it once and then released the footage over the years. Also, they did risk it once, why wouldn't they again? The CIA got their fingers burned in most of their large-scale covert operations, and still they did it again and again. This is quite well-documented. Nothing to show that conspirators aren't idiots, either.
Point being, I can readily think of any number of reasons why they would continue. If I don't buy the laser, I'm not buying vague speculations about motivations of people who keep their actions hidden by definition.



And the so called "factual" research most of the atheists have is not directly their own. And as you have explained it easy to be lied to.


.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 08:18:29 AM
Yes, you cannot actually rebut the research so you throw in quotation marks.

Unlike you, however, they have actually done the research . . . did not just . . . "research the Internet."

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 18, 2011, 08:46:46 AM
Alzael

God is supernatural.

1) He does not have to leave evidence or

2) He can leave evidence that is misleading or

3) He can leave evidence of a normally expected type of evidence

He can do what He likes.
When I do card tricks, I know how I do them. Do you think that God knows how he does these miracles? (Floods, Plague, stopping the sun going round the Earth, etc?)

If He does know how He does them, He could tell us and then He wouldn't be supernatural.
If he doesn't know, it is something beyond the knowledge of God that He possesses and, someone or something would have had to create Him and given Him tht power.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 08:56:06 AM
You know, the picture posted by Grimm in The Truth About Prayer thread rather applies:

(http://i.imgur.com/x6dJA.jpg)

Dino proposes a deity that can alter the very structure of the universe--to make a flat disk a sphere without leaving any evidence--yet the child remains suffering without alleviation.

Not a god for Gentlemen to worship, no.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: jtk73 on January 18, 2011, 10:35:03 AM
God is supernatural.

1) He does not have to leave evidence or

2) He can leave evidence that is misleading or

3) He can leave evidence of a normally expected type of evidene

He can do what He likes.
Then he is.
1) Irrelevant or
2) Dishonest and cannot be trusted or
3) Indistinguishable from being nonexistent.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 10:39:25 AM
Dino give it up
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: nogodsforme on January 18, 2011, 10:58:53 AM
Now god uses magic to create a flood that leaves no evidence that a flood happened...but tricks us to think something completely different happened, like no flood!

Why are we supposed to believe that there was this flood again? Where else in life does anyone accept crap like this as real?

Like, I paid you the money I owed you, directly into your bank account.  But it was magic invisible money that makes your bank balance look as if I did not pay you the money. In fact, it subtracted money from your account so it looks like I removed money from your account. But I insist that you believe me when I tell you I paid you. ;D

Like, as if I had that magic "psychic" surgery that left the tumor inside me and I am exactly as sick with, say, cancer of the uterus as I was before. Except that in the case of the flood, the psychic surgery rearranged my internal organs to look as if I had a different configuration entirely, no uterus but testicles instead.  :o

See, I cured your uterine cancer but you can't tell because you are magically now a man and don't have a uterus! I magically changed you into a man to hide the fact that I did the magic surgery on you and removed your uterine tumor.

I saved your life, although there is no way you can tell. Fork over a million dollars.  Zot! Not even the psychic surgery charlatans would try to get away with that one.... :P

I am incoherent with the very concept of magic invisible stuff that changes the world to look as if there was no magic invisible stuff...along with the insistence that we believe in magic invisible stuff that looks like there is no magic invisible stuff.

That's it! I'm becoming a satanist. At least they have fun with their magic invisible stuff.... &)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: velkyn on January 18, 2011, 11:15:52 AM
So you have a date for the flood?
no, and you don't either.  Christians try to claim dates for the flood and then when shown that there is no evidence, they refigure that date or claim that
Quote
we can't know, just like you. And with the cardiothoracic surgeon you might be surprised at just how much “gut feeling” is used.
evidence of this claim?  It seems only an appeal to authority to validate a ridiculous claim.  My husband has some heart issues. I dont' recall his cardiologist making any decisions based on any "guts".  She had EKGs, results from catheterizations, stress tests, etc and finally my husband's Wolff-Parkinson-White problems are taken care of after two catheterization abalations.   Shall I ask her, dino?
Quote
You missed the point. It is a fact that the moon has the same apparent size as the sun when viewed from earth. Both of us agree on that 100%. But as I said above you see that evidence as just another chance happening. I see it as another piece of evidence that makes me wonder.
evidence of what, dino? Your god? Which god is that? The one in the bible?  Why does it make pretty displays in the sky?  To impress us?  Well, that might have worked in ancient times and up until the Middle ages but when we realized what was happening, it wasn't the sky darkening because the gods were angry, it was the moon's orbit that caused it.  As has been shown, the pretty show isn't permanent.  Did God get tired of a nice "diamond ring" photo? 
(http://eb173.com/db5/00481/eb173.com/_uimages/eclipse4-DiamondRingEffect.JPG)

I pass on the research I know about because it's replicable.  I have enough of a background in many sciences to know when to question someone's claims.  I don't blindly believe in things like you seem to, dino.  You want us to believe that there is a God because there are solar eclipses.  That's ridiculous to me since first, any god could do this, and second, what was the point?  You keep wanting to claim your god is not the "manager" of this universe but the real creator, but then you have it doing silly little parlor tricks.  You are like every other theist in that you, in this day and age, have to rely on parlor trick and coincidence for your evidence of such a being.  Why are there no big miracles now, ones that no one can explain like were claimed in the bible and in other religions?   

Your god has become so vague with so many excuses that it is essentially meaningless.  We can see nothing in this universe that indicates any type of god, yours or any other theists.  We have facts like there is nothing that shows any magical global flood.  You try to claim that those facts might be wrong and lies but again you fail at showing that any of them are wrong.  And what's even more funny, you use the same science and facts daily but oooh, when they show your myths are ridiculous they suddenly become untrustworthy.  How "convenient".
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: screwtape on January 18, 2011, 12:11:57 PM
So it just happens to be at the right distance during man's presence on Earth so he could see the eclipse.

What is so important about seeing an eclipse?  How is that evidence of anything?  Is that a "what are the odds" kind of fallacy?  You can play that game all day with anything. 

And you know, it already is not a perfect fit.  Not all eclipses are total.  The apparent relative size of the moon varies because of eliptical orbits.  This (http://www.windows2universe.org/physical_science/physics/mechanics/orbit/perihelion_aphelion.html) shows the example with the earth and sun.  The same thing applies to the moon.  If the moon is at the aphelion, it does not completely cover the sun and you get a ring.  It is called an Annular Eclipse (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_eclipse#Types).  I was fortunate to witness and photograph one in 1994.  I regret to be the one to tell you god was not to be found anywhere near it.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 12:20:27 PM
You want us to believe that there is a God because there are solar eclipses.  That's ridiculous to me since first, any god could do this, and second, what was the point? 


I said the sun and moon having the same apparent size when viewed from Earth is just one of example of things that make me think in the direction of a supernatural.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: commonsense on January 18, 2011, 01:55:52 PM
After having been on this forum since January 12 to say I am impressed by the incredible amount of research the atheists have done  and continue to do would be a great understatment.

Given the research is huge and ongoing it must be hard to prove this god did not exist.

Of course I might be wrong and your research is only small and stopped long ago.

As there was any further need for you and JT, this post truly highlights your ignorance , unlike yourself all of the non believers here have searched extensively to "prove" the existence of god and through being honest with themselves and due to there being no tangible evidence at all they unselfishly ( without a collection plate ) share their well researched and factual knowledge with people like yourself.
The knowledge of scripture of many of the atheists here surpasses that of many christians I have ever known , the intellectual intelligence shared by poster's in this thread alone is staggering without the benefit of "god sprinkles " or mythical magic stories to fill in the gaps.


Does to be "born again" really mean the human brain is restored to infant beliefs ? evidence clearly exhibits this!
 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 02:01:57 PM

As I heavily implied in the other thread Dino prominently features in, he's making a "strong" case that if Shmoople exists he can do flarg. Oh, and there's no tangible evidence of any flarging because that's just how Shmoople wants is.

How this "looking at the same thing differently" continues to carry weight I'll never know. Since there's nothing to be observed in the case of the flood by Dino's own definition, but still it happened for sure.

This whole debate hinges on God existing or not existing. Everything else that is discussed such as evolution, the Catholic church etc and etc is all secondary.

You and I both see what we regard as evidence. You think my evidence as well as myself are completely fucked. That is OK but it is my evidence. On the other hand I think you (meaning atheists) are missing things. In fact having been on this forum for a week has locked me in harder on this side of the table. Maybe you would be interested to know the reason. The forum works on the basis of a very restricted debate system, not free flowing as if we were having a beer together. Thus my posting are all moderated and that of course means I post to suit a moderator. But the atheists themselves also like the restricted debate. That to me means you miss out on things. People who like a debate restricted will also by pass or eliminate lots of potential information.

See this sort of thing with actuaries in life and disability insurance. A new policy will be getting introduced and different agents will explain to the actuary what they see as problem areas. The actuary will not listen or accept such information or the format of the information etc. So we then go through the usual process of the policy range being introduced and then all the fuckups. If the actuary did not automatically discount information then we would not have to go through that fucking process every fucking time.

The forum indicated that you are like the actuary and as such a lot is missing from your evidence.

But to move on, in terms of this topic the person like me is not looking for in depth analysis of evolution or whatever. For me it is about if God or gods exist.

The actuary goes through all his numbers as well as other issues of course but the agent looks at the whole overall thing because he will sell it, deal with the underwriting etc and etc. If there are problems then the actuary’s numbers are fucking meaningless because the policy won’t work, that is, too hard to sell or underwriting or quote systems etc. and back to scratch we go.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: commonsense on January 18, 2011, 02:04:38 PM
Alzael

God is supernatural.

1) He does not have to leave evidence or

2) He can leave evidence that is misleading or

3) He can leave evidence of a normally expected type of evidene

He can do what He likes.

1) of course not this would cause people to believe in him.

2) that cheeky little devil

3) that's all good as long as it's not evidence that can be perceived by humans as being evidence.

he can do whatever you imagine he likes hey Dino ? did you learn that answer in Sunday school ?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 18, 2011, 02:10:43 PM
Dino

Showing that there is no evidence for the existence for god is easy. Even someone of such pedestrian intelligence as myself can do it!

Explaining this to people who refuse to concede the point because they cling to rationalizations for what they have already decided to believe is hard.

By your own admission, if there is no evidence for the supernatural, then this is ok because it is the supernatural and it could have supernaturally hidden the evidence. Therefor you can believe anything you want, because it is the supernatural.

What I am saying is that in that case, you only reason to believe is still your desire to believe.

If you can show me a compelling reason to believe I will change my mind. If you cannot, then you must admit you believe what you believe because it makes you feel good.

You continue to ignore this and do not address the points made. This is not honest.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 02:11:03 PM

As there was any further need for you and JT, this post truly highlights your ignorance , unlike yourself all of the non believers here have searched extensively to "prove" the existence of god and through being honest with themselves and due to there being no tangible evidence at all they unselfishly ( without a collection plate ) share their well researched and factual knowledge with people like yourself.

To listen to them tell it God can be disproved very quickly, just Noah's Ark will do the job. However, you are saying it needs extensive research. Well "extensive" would be huge based on what these members say about research.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: commonsense on January 18, 2011, 02:22:03 PM
That's for the atheists to find out ;D ;D

And we do have big floods here in Australia at the moment. Huge.

There is nothing for atheists to find out they already don't believe , as you are claiming this to be a factual event ,proving this lays on your shoulders.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 02:26:08 PM

By your own admission, if there is no evidence for the supernatural, and this is ok  because it is the supernatural. Therefor you can believe anything you want, because it is the supernatural.


What I said is there is evidence, at least for me that a supernatural has been at work. Now of course if a supernatural exists then surely you would agree trying to figure it/he/she out would be futile, purely for entertainment purposes.

But if you read what I posted to Noman Peopled above this post you will see I don't your evidence collecting and interpretation as being 100%, nowhere near it.



If you can show me a compelling reason to believe I will change my mind. If you cannot, then you must admit you believe what you believe because it makes you feel good.

You continue to ignore this and do not address the points made. This is not honest.

Likewise, if you can show me a compelling reason not to believe then I will change. But I know you don't get all evidence.

Pre Big Bang in my opinion puts either side of the table at a draw for being or beings. But for supernatural then 95/5 in favour of supernatural.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 02:44:47 PM
Alzael

God is supernatural.

1) He does not have to leave evidence or

2) He can leave evidence that is misleading or

3) He can leave evidence of a normally expected type of evidene

He can do what He likes.

Do you have a definition of supernatural, and an understanding of the rules involved in it? If not then:

1) You do not know this, cannot know this, and are making it up.

2)You do not know this, cannot know this, and are making it up.

3) You do not know this, cannot know this, and are making it up.

You are making it up.


Just for moment assume God existed, created the universe.

What limitation do think He would have?

I don't know. I have no qualification to judge on what his limitations would be. There are many possibilities at play here. His power may be solely limited to the one act of creating, it's possible that he spent almost all of his power on that single act and cannot accomplish much else. It is a possibility that he is only capable of acting in a god-like capacity at certain times of the year. There is the possibility that he is omnipotent, yet is rendered powerless in situations where it could be proven that is working. He could be all-powerful in most circumstances and yet have a vulnerability against the colour yellow.

I do not know, nor do you. As you have no information regarding gods abilities aside from your sad little delusion, nor evidence of such abilities. It is dishonest to make claims about what god can do, since you are only assuming. Lacking any information on gods abilities, and lacking any evidence or way in which to discover gods abilities, you do not get to just make random claims.

Lacking any evidence, the only honest option is to disbelieve. As I said, you're just being increasingly more and more stupid in vain and pathetic attempts to defend your own stupidtiy.

Do you have anything to offer the discussion that demonstrates you have put actual thought into it?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 02:48:49 PM
Dinosaurs, start by providing actual evidence for some of this. Cease your attempts at stonewalling and stop making baseless claims. If you have any actual proof of how magic and gods powers work then provide it. Otherwise I suggest that you stop trying as hard as you can to look like a cartoon character.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: nogodsforme on January 18, 2011, 04:41:05 PM

As there was any further need for you and JT, this post truly highlights your ignorance , unlike yourself all of the non believers here have searched extensively to "prove" the existence of god and through being honest with themselves and due to there being no tangible evidence at all they unselfishly ( without a collection plate ) share their well researched and factual knowledge with people like yourself.

To listen to them tell it God can be disproved very quickly, just Noah's Ark will do the job. However, you are saying it needs extensive research. Well "extensive" would be huge based on what these members say about research.

The only way that Noah's Ark could be a true account of a real event is if it all happened magically. There are no facts or evidence to support that this could ever have happened, because there is no proof of the existence of magic. Having established that, I will just have some speculative fun here.

Do you know how many temperate insect species there are in the world? Do you know how many desert plant species there are? How many species of tropical frog? How many species of spiders? Arctic mammals? Bats? Viruses? Bacteria?

You don't know. I don't either. Nobody knows. Humans have only documented the existence of a fraction of the total species that there are on the earth.

But Noah knew about every last one of them, and knew where to find them all and how to move them all safely to the Middle East without modern transportation. In torrential rain.

Noah also knew how to create the appropriate habitats for all of them--tropical warm and wet to tundra cold and dry. How to keep all the food that each animal needs fresh without refrigeration.  How to keep the predators from eating the prey. How to keep the fast reproducing pairs of mice and other rodents from mating and overrunning the boat.

Do you realize that bees and ants are social animals and cannot exist if you only have two? Bees, by the way have to have living flowering plants to survive. Where did all the live pollen-producing flowers come from?

Koala bears eat only eucalyptus leaves. Fresh eucalyptus leaves. From the living plant. Two pounds a day. From Australia.  Speaking of Australia, do you know that a pair of rabbits can reproduce a litter of 8 every 28 days? Did Noah and his family toss the extra couple hundred bunnies overboard, feed them to the coyotes or eat them all?

Have you ever visited a zoo, an aquarium or a botanical garden? Do you have any idea how much work it takes to care for just a handful of different species when they all need specific food, temperatures, ventilation, sanitation and waste disposal?

Do you know how much poop one elephant produces every day? I looked it up.  One male elephant can produce 500 pounds of crap in 24 hours. Multiply that by 40 days, baby, and mucking out the boat is a more than full time job for Japeth the Unlucky, who also gets to transport the intestinal parasites, disease bacteria and nifty viruses.  Who gets the rabies? Who gets the face-eating bacteria? Who gets the plague?

I know, logistical problems are just magicked away. God took care of  these issues, and the story never details just how it all happened. Bible literalists have to make up all kinds of weird sh!t. Like, the animals were all magically asleep so they did not have to eat, drink, mate or poop. or, all the species were eggs or larvae or seeds or babies.

But the bible don't say that, do it? It say the animals marched onto the boat two by two. Not the animals were carried on in test tubes and terrariums two by two. And the bible is a really long book with a lot of space devoted to lists of names and begatting. There was room for some details of the whole Noah thing.  Aren't you concerned that you have to keep making more ridiculous sh!t up to explain and justify the weird sh!t you believe?   Can't you just admit that it never happened and is a metaphor or folk tale?

You would think that god would have left some of that advanced technology around for Noah et al to use after the flood was over. But he just whisked it all away with his wand, the species magically all returned to the apropriate places on the planet and everything went back to primitive-- leaving it up to science to re-discover and re-invent refrigeration and sanitation all over again thousands of years later. Damn. 

Maybe that's why Noah got drunk as soon as the voyage was over. How can you keep them down on the prehistoric desert oasis town, once they've experienced the Biosphere Super-Duper-Ark 64000 Transport Vehicle with the special secret Yahweh powered mega-habitat/science lab/luxury cruise liner interior? You're talking the Starship Enterprise, only built out of wood and sealed up with pitch. Riiiiiight.
 
You realize that we could not replicate anything close to a Noah's Ark today, with all the science and technology at our disposal, but you expect us to believe that it was possible in some ancient society? Why do you accept that this magic event happened in the absence of any reason to think it did? I'd be embarassed for you, but it would be a waste of time. :o 
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 04:44:34 PM
^^^^ You forgot to point out that the bible also gives conflicting details on the flood. Such as how many of each animal there were (either 2 or 7) how long the flood lasted (40 days or 150) etc.

As an interesting side note about the fossil deposit that creationists say occurred during the flood.

In the Karoo Formation of fossils in Africa, there are fossils which range from small lizards to animals the size of a fox. There are 800 billion animal fossils which exist there. This translates to 21 animals for every 1 acre of land on earth if all of those fossils were created during the global flood (which is the theistic claim). This is just one fossil deposit.

A very conservative estimate is that there are about 100 fossils elsewhere on earth for every one fossil in the Karoo formation. Taking this into account it means roughly 2,100 animals per acre during the time of the flood.

However, only a very small percentage of animals that die become fossilized. If we assume that 1 in every 1,000 animals becomes fossilized (which is an insanely high probability) then this amounts to 50 land animals per square foot of land wandering around at the time of the flood.

This is more than the earth could even begin to support.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 18, 2011, 04:48:56 PM
I said the sun and moon having the same apparent size when viewed from Earth is just one of example of things that make me think in the direction of a supernatural.

Do you shit your pants everytime you are dealt a hand of cards?

Because the odds that you got that particular hand are astronomical. Consider how easily impressed you are (due to admitted ignorance, which there is nothing wrong with), show some humility and be honest.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 04:55:56 PM

Do you shit your pants everytime you are dealt a hand of cards?

Because the odds that you got that particular hand are astronomical. Consider how easily impressed you are (due to admitted ignorance, which there is nothing wrong with), show some humility and be honest.

Ridiculous comparison.

To use the cards and make it a closer comparison the cards themselves would have to be first made and at random.

So the cards have to be made from some self starting process and then when they arrive we have to get a specific hand dealt.

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: xsfizzix on January 18, 2011, 05:23:34 PM
How can you keep them down on the prehistoric desert oasis town, once they've experienced the Biosphere Super-Duper-Ark 64000 Transport Vehicle with the special secret Yahweh powered mega-habitat/science lab/luxury cruise liner interior? You're talking the Starship Enterprise, only built out of wood and sealed up with pitch. Riiiiiight.

LAWL! Funniest thing I read all day.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 18, 2011, 05:26:36 PM
I don't know where the debate is at anymore and I don't want to read pages of info to find out, so I'll just comment once I understand what's going on.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 05:31:19 PM
I said the sun and moon having the same apparent size when viewed from Earth is just one of example of things that make me think in the direction of a supernatural.

Do you shit your pants everytime you are dealt a hand of cards?

Only when he throws dice.







Thank you, I am here all week.

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 05:33:02 PM
I don't know where the debate is at anymore and I don't want to read pages of info to find out, so I'll just comment once I understand what's going on.

Just start from where you left off. Ignore the stuff going on with Dinosaurs. It's largely irrelevant and barely qualifies as filler.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ParkingPlaces on January 18, 2011, 05:58:28 PM
Apparently it's pretty easy to think you're winning when you're making everything up. Dinosaur says he thinks the odds of a creator are something like 95/5. He's pulling numbers out of his butt. That's why they stink, I guess.

It is not my opinion that the earth never had a flood. If something other than the bible said that such an event had occurred, I'd think about paying attention. But since reality doesn't match that story in any way, shape or form, I ignore it.

Nogodsforme, you did good in the above post. Very good.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 06:06:13 PM
Apparently it's pretty easy to think you're winning when you're making everything up. Dinosaur says he thinks the odds of a creator are something like 95/5. He's pulling numbers out of his butt. That's why they stink, I guess.


I said

"Pre Big Bang in my opinion puts either side of the table at a draw for being or beings. But for supernatural then 95/5 in favour of supernatural."

Look up what supernatural means.



Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: ksm on January 18, 2011, 06:08:11 PM
You want us to believe that there is a God because there are solar eclipses.  That's ridiculous to me since first, any god could do this, and second, what was the point? 


I said the sun and moon having the same apparent size when viewed from Earth is just one of example of things that make me think in the direction of a supernatural.

This just makes you sound gullible.

I mean 1+1 = 2. That can't just be a coincidence right? How can it be that 1 is exactly one half of 2? Obviously there is a god.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 18, 2011, 06:08:26 PM

Do you shit your pants everytime you are dealt a hand of cards?

Because the odds that you got that particular hand are astronomical. Consider how easily impressed you are (due to admitted ignorance, which there is nothing wrong with), show some humility and be honest.

Ridiculous comparison.

To use the cards and make it a closer comparison the cards themselves would have to be first made and at random.

So the cards have to be made from some self starting process and then when they arrive we have to get a specific hand dealt.

You didn't imply that the moon existing was the miracle for you. You stated that the moon being a certain size is what turned your crank. I can only respond to what you write, Dino. I'm not a mind reader.

So, the process that leads to moons in general is one of your special moments. Alright. I see! You understand how probabilities function in the non-universe. How have you determined this? What experiments where done in none-existence to determine how probabilties function in that medium? Can you link to the number that represents how probable universes are in existence (or, non-existence)? I sure hope they show their work, the Nobel committee will be keen to hear it.

(Of course, this response assumes you understand how planets and moons are formed from the stellar debris of dead stars, and that you're going right back to the tired canard of "how did this all come to be? What are the odds? OMFG! It must be a real big number for this sample size of one to be produced!!!!")

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 06:15:14 PM
This just makes you sound gullible.

I mean 1+1 = 2. That can't just be a coincidence right? How can it be that 1 is exactly one half of 2? Obviously there is a god.

What are the odds of the earth forming and including that moon.

How much different would the world be if our moon was not so large in relation to our size.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Grimm on January 18, 2011, 07:11:24 PM
This just makes you sound gullible.

I mean 1+1 = 2. That can't just be a coincidence right? How can it be that 1 is exactly one half of 2? Obviously there is a god.

What are the odds of the earth forming and including that moon.

How much different would the world be if our moon was not so large in relation to our size.

Let's see if you can follow along with this analogy.

My backyard has a deck.  I have a lawn dart.  You and I stand on the deck, and I hand you the lawn dart.  Without looking, you're going to throw the lawn dart back, over your head, and at the yard.

Assuming I have 2*10^35 blades of grass in my yard, and assuming even distribution of that grass, what is the likelihood that you, throwing the dart, will hit precisely the same blade of grass twice? 

Mind you - not twice in two throws.  Just twice.  How many throws would you need to guarantee that you'd done so?

Now.  What is the likelihood you'll hit grass - not a specific point.  Just grass?

What is the likelihood that your dart would land in that particular spot in a single throw?

Is that particular spot particularly special?

If you throw the dart again, is the new spot particularly special?

Assume that a third party walks up to the scene - seeing where the dart has hit.   Is it right for him to exclaim that the current location of the dart is divine because it is practically impossible that it would hit that very spot?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Ambassador Pony on January 18, 2011, 07:12:42 PM
What are the odds of the earth forming and including that moon.

1
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Doctor X on January 18, 2011, 07:19:00 PM
Ridiculous comparison.

Ipse dixit but incorrect.

Quote
To use the cards and make it a closer comparison the cards themselves would have to be first made and at random.

They are.

Next. . . .

--J.D.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 07:31:08 PM


Assume that a third party walks up to the scene - seeing where the dart has hit.   Is it right for him to exclaim that the current location of the dart is divine because it is practically impossible that it would hit that very spot?

But the spot hit is special for him.

You are informed today by NASA that they will send you to the next planety system discovered. They have the technology to get you there. When you arrive you have to leave your space ship without a space suit and walk around for a day.

What are the odds that you will survive without a space suit.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 07:41:09 PM
What are the odds of the earth forming and including that moon.

How much different would the world be if our moon was not so large in relation to our size.

The odds are 1. Because it happened. Learn how probability works please. The flaw with claiming that  the forming of the universe, or that life appeared in the universe with very small odds is that those odds are impossible to work out. There is no other universe that we can look to for a comparison, so any attempt to work out the probability is just making a number up. Which is what theists do.

Could you please try to gain at least a small portion of actual knowledge if you're going to continue with this?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Dinosaurs on January 18, 2011, 07:44:23 PM

The odds are 1. Because it happened.

Exactly. After the event.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 07:49:44 PM
Apparently it's pretty easy to think you're winning when you're making everything up. Dinosaur says he thinks the odds of a creator are something like 95/5. He's pulling numbers out of his butt. That's why they stink, I guess.


I said

"Pre Big Bang in my opinion puts either side of the table at a draw for being or beings. But for supernatural then 95/5 in favour of supernaturall."

Look up what supernatural means.
In my folklore (as a Haida) we have a lot of supernatural beings,dozens upon dozens. Is this god? or is this just another delusional tribe like yours? how can you say your supernatural beings and occurrences are real and mine are not? The stories of MY supernatural beings outdate yours by at least 5000 years.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: 12 Monkeys on January 18, 2011, 07:51:35 PM
This just makes you sound gullible.

I mean 1+1 = 2. That can't just be a coincidence right? How can it be that 1 is exactly one half of 2? Obviously there is a god.

What are the odds of the earth forming and including that moon.

How much different would the world be if our moon was not so large in relation to our size.
NOW you are just BABBLING
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Agamemnon on January 18, 2011, 08:24:51 PM
Dinosaurs' posting regarding supernatural beings removed for improper quoting of wiki definition.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Graybeard on January 18, 2011, 08:31:16 PM

The odds are 1. Because it happened.

Exactly. After the event.
Yes, that's how odds are calculated.

Did you mean "What are the odds of it happening again?" - That's a different figure but as there are a really huge number of stars, it is not really that huge.

What are the chances of God making another earth and moon, again? Or making a man out of dust, again? Or stopping the sun from going round the earth (sic), again.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Alzael on January 18, 2011, 08:39:06 PM

The odds are 1. Because it happened.

Exactly. After the event.

Which I covered above. Please try to stop being stupid for just a few seconds. As a favour to everyone else on the forum.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 18, 2011, 11:24:00 PM
I see we're talking probability. If we're gonna do that, why not talk about the probability of life forming at random? I've read (and maybe this has been refuted so correct me if I'm wrong) that the chance of 1 amino acid forming at random is .000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001% And what's an amino acid? Well cells, yes super small cells, are made up of proteins, and those proteins are made up of amino acids. Assuming there are 7900000000 protein molecules in one cell (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK21473/ (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK21473/)) and 100 amino acids are required to form one protein (not sure about this, but this is the closest estimate I could find) then the chances of forming one cell by random chance is .000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000079 And this is a generous estimate as it gets MUCH smaller that each formation of amino acids into proteins and proteins into the actual cell would occur at the same time. We're talking much closer to 000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001 x 10^-7900000000! (where "!" represents a factorial) That's a very, very, very, very, small number. If that number were just x10^-60! then the new result would be .00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001
So x10^-7900000000! would probably be like .00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000000001 if I had to guess (but it's probably MUCH MUCH MUCH MUCH bigger)
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 18, 2011, 11:28:58 PM
And if you don't know what a factorial is then here's an example:
50! = 50x49x48x47x46x45x44x43x42....etc
and the value of 50! equals 304140932x10^64
So just try to imagine how big 7900000000! is
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 18, 2011, 11:31:28 PM
]

Quote
What I said is there is evidence, at least for me that a supernatural has been at work. Now of course if a supernatural exists then surely you would agree trying to figure it/he/she out would be futile, purely for entertainment purposes.

You have not provided said evidence

Quote
But if you read what I posted to Noman Peopled above this post you will see I don't your evidence collecting and interpretation as being 100%, nowhere near it.


I have read the post and failed to register any point that makes any sense. You seem to be saying that there could be 8 reasons not to buy a house, but all those negative reasons when seen together make a compelling positive? This makes no sense.

Quote
If you can show me a compelling reason to believe I will change my mind. If you cannot, then you must admit you believe what you believe because it makes you feel good.

You continue to ignore this and do not address the points made. This is not honest.

Likewise, if you can show me a compelling reason not to believe then I will change. But I know you don't get all evidence.

I have - I have shown that you have no reason to believe except for your desire to believe. Can you show me a compelling reason not to believe in the invisible pink unicorn?

Quote
Pre Big Bang in my opinion puts either side of the table at a draw for being or beings. But for supernatural then 95/5 in favour of supernatural.

That is entirely arbitrary and you cannot - and do not - back it up. Pre big bang we cannot say anything - if big bang is the theory we choose to accept or not!

You are just dodging the issue, you are not addressing it, and you continue your intellectual dishonesty. You sir, disappoint me. Your only reason to believe remains your desire to believe.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Agamemnon on January 18, 2011, 11:36:02 PM
Dinosaurs' posting privileges are suspended until tomorrow for trolling.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 18, 2011, 11:42:12 PM
With those stats God seems like a pretty good option. Heck, you may as well stop arguing unicorns don't exist. Because the likelihood of them existing is probably as good as one cell forming by random chance.  :D
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Vivisectus on January 18, 2011, 11:46:28 PM
With those stats God seems like a pretty good option. Heck, you may as well stop arguing unicorns don't exist. Because the likelihood of them existing is probably as good as one cell forming by random chance.  :D

Exactly. Your belief is just as random as the invisible pink unicorn. Congratulations! You have stumbled onto the truth.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Agamemnon on January 18, 2011, 11:51:23 PM
With those stats God seems like a pretty good option. Heck, you may as well stop arguing unicorns don't exist. Because the likelihood of them existing is probably as good as one cell forming by random chance.  :D

What is the probability of a god forming by random chance?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Jeff7 on January 19, 2011, 12:37:25 AM
With those stats God seems like a pretty good option. Heck, you may as well stop arguing unicorns don't exist. Because the likelihood of them existing is probably as good as one cell forming by random chance.  :D

Yes! Yes! Thank you for finally showing the proof of Allah's existence that we've been waiting for! The one, true God!

I'd like to request a reply to my post, reply 426 if possible.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Grimm on January 19, 2011, 01:12:53 AM


Assume that a third party walks up to the scene - seeing where the dart has hit.   Is it right for him to exclaim that the current location of the dart is divine because it is practically impossible that it would hit that very spot?

But the spot hit is special for him.

You are informed today by NASA that they will send you to the next planety system discovered. They have the technology to get you there. When you arrive you have to leave your space ship without a space suit and walk around for a day.

What are the odds that you will survive without a space suit.

Mars has two moons, both exceedingly small - Phobos and Demios.   These moons have no real effect on we earthbound humans.  Different toss of the lawn dart.

Jupiter has 63! moons.  This is surely divine!

The problem with your argument is simple:  being amazed at the characteristics of our moon doesn't make that moon supernatural in origin.  I would posit that if we had two moons, you could (and would) find similar arguments for their specialness.

Now - on to JT:

And if you don't know what a factorial is then here's an example:
50! = 50x49x48x47x46x45x44x43x42....etc
and the value of 50! equals 304140932x10^64
So just try to imagine how big 7900000000! is

Where did you get your first probability - the one of a protein forming at random?  If that probability is off, your entire calculation is off.

Given that scientists have caused spontaneous assembly of amino acid chains into proto-protiens with regularity in the lab, do you think that perhaps your probability may be wrong?

Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: RaymondKHessel on January 19, 2011, 01:19:44 AM
Sigh... So "magic" is the answer to everything. If it's amazing, magic. If it's really complex, magic. If I don't UNDERSTAND it, it's magic. If it's too crazy to possibly be real, it's magic.

First off, I've said this before... When you create the cosmic equivellent of Superman, and give him ALL the powers, you always get the jerky kid on the block wanting to be him when you play superheroes, and nobody wants to play with the jerky kid as Superman.

Because he can do EVERYTHING, the jerky kid has literally infinite loopholes to conjure up, as long as he can keep playing make-believe.

It's a self-contained system of impenetrable self-delusion. As soon as somebody planted a seed in your mind that said "Oh, our god can do ANYTHING. So use your imagination, go nuts! Whatever it is, our magical Superman can do it!"... As soon as that was planted, booyah. That's it. You just castrated your ability to think critically about anything you hear regarding Superman. You've backed yourself into a logic-free zone that it is literally impossible to escape from as long as you can keep rationalizing and inventing new powers and adventures for Yahweh.

But like a Superman comic, there comes a point when it's TOO MUCH RETARD. Sure, you can get by 100 issues having him fight off common criminals, but eventually, to keep things interesting, you have to start bringing in the moon men and the dwarf from dimension X and Bizarro God.

THINK ABOUT THIS MAN, FOR THE LOVE OF THOR: The flood, Noah's Ark, whatever... You go down this LAUNDRY LIST of absolute absurdities... "Poofing" 100 times the world's water into place in order to flood everything and then "poofing" it all away along with all the evidence and laying down completely ALTERNATE evidence in it's place to not only cover your tracks but paint a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT PICTURE... ALLLL that entails... Quantum wormholes on the Ark and all...

Layer after layer after layer of absurdities and needless complexity. Why?

For DRAMA. Because God snapping his fingers and simply changing the nature of reality is BORRRING in a storybook. And it wouldn't sink in with the ancient desert goat-herders it was written for. Yahweh's deeds had to compare with those of Jupiter and Romulus and Mars. You needed serious DRAMA to be compelling.

BECAUSE IT IS A STORY BOOK.

What POSSIBLE purpose would it serve, to operate this old-school MEGA miracles with their infinite layers of logical problems and the replacement of literally EVERY SINGLE SCRAP of evidence with evidence that seems to point to the exact OPPOSITE answer to "magicdidit".

"To show he's god!" To who? Noah would have been impressed with or without a big goofy flood killing everybody if 99.9% of all life on Earth "pooofed" out of existance. And certainly not to modern man, given that all the evidence has been removed and replaced, only to EVER be acknowledged in this single ancient frankensteined manuscript, full of rape and murder and slavery and misogyny, that's not only in DESPERATE need of an editor, but that is for some unfathomable reason written in riddles and uses 14th century Medieval English and an insane number of farming/animal references... Almost like it was written for primitive, superstitious, gullible goat-herders.

 Your god is WOEFULLY inefficient, is what I'm suggesting here.

What blows my mind, is that some people can seriously hear the hundreds of things about a story that don't make sense, that they KNOW doesn't conform to anything they know about the laws of nature or how reality works, and for which there is absolutely not a single solitary shred of actual evidence, outside a poorly written and frankly barbaric 1,700 year old book...  And ACCEPT IT, in all it's silly over-complexity and nonsensical-ness... 

While the obvious, glaring answer, three words long, and *completely* in-line with every observation ever made and documented by those who cared to look into it, is simply

"It never happened."

"Poof!" Goodbye logical failings! Sionara layer upon layer of absurdity! Adios, need for... <snicker>... Excuse me... Magic.

I will say though, I really do appreciate that it's just right out there on the table this time around... The word "magic" I mean. SOO many of our theist guests dance around that word like their shoes are on fire. I'm glad we're all mature enough <snicker> to actually call it what it is here.

But you know, I've seen Penn Jillette catch a bullet in his teeth. Still no amputees growing back limbs. And all the modern "magic" coming from the magical god place is basically indistinguishable from the mundane freak occurances, which strikes me as pretty silly. Back in the day, catching a bullet in your teeth would get a bible written about you. WAY less magic required to convince the rubes of ancient Palastine.

Yet in this day and age, with lasers and X-ray and space vehicles and fiber optic cable and wireless internet, when the world basically *NEEDS* an old school miracle of biblical proportions to make any kind of impression on anybody outside the indoctrinated masses, we get jack s**t. Not even HALF of a talking donkey. Just a moldy old book and an army of brainwashed rubes who still believe in magic in the 21st century.

Freaking unbelievable. That's why it's better if you're an Asian. Jesus and Yahweh hate people with slanty eyes and have never really hung out in any of the slanty-eyed countries. So sure, maybe 98% of all Asians in history are roasting in hell, but Christ. At least those damned celestials are great at math, huh? So they didn't TOTALLY lose out, and they get to live in blissful ignorance of rarely having to endure conversations like this outside of theology courses in school.

God, make me an Asian. You are the Lord of Poofery. I have faith you can do it; make it so!     
...

<checks skin>

Damn. Still the same Yankee-Mick-Squaw I've always been.

Dissapointing track record, to say the least.

Well, if the guy who made universes can't do it, I'm sure any hack plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills could at least make an attempt. I might come out of it looking like the Elephant Man, but shit. It's a START.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 19, 2011, 06:05:28 AM
This whole debate hinges on God existing or not existing. Everything else that is discussed such as evolution, the Catholic church etc and etc is all secondary.
That is complete and utter nonsense. A debate about god's existence cannot hinge on god's existence. It would be a pure hypothetical or a logical clusterfuck.

Quote
You and I both see what we regard as evidence. You think my evidence as well as myself are completely fucked.
Yes.

Quote
That is OK but it is my evidence.
There is no such thing as "your" evidence. It's either evidence or it isn't. I detailed this twice now. I may be wrong about my notion of evidence but at least I can tell you why I hold it to be evidence for/against X. As in "rationally" and "logically", i.e. according to guidelines that are provably better at arriving at conclusions than any other system of thought, with the sole assumption that what we see is not completely random or fake input. I also detailed how evidence is not therefore evidence for everything logically consistent with it.

Quote
The forum works on the basis of a very restricted debate system, not free flowing as if we were having a beer together.
True, but arguments would not be more/less valid in a debate over a beer.

Quote
Thus my posting are all moderated and that of course means I post to suit a moderator.
Well, you are pulling stunts like claiming that the appearent size of the moon fits the sun's after several posts debunking the claim that this is even true, including mine, is in some way an indication for an entity, while failing to provide any logical link. Your moon argument boils down to "stuff is the way it is -> god exists".
You didn't detail any other such indications so we have no way of gauging their worth, but they'll be useless without a link to god.

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But the atheists themselves also like the restricted debate. That to me means you miss out on things. People who like a debate restricted will also by pass or eliminate lots of potential information.
A lot of which will be bogus. Everybody does that, everbyody has rules of thumb to go by in order to not be completely swamped by irrelevant information, like invisible dragons.
Also, I did gain a lot of information from you. I have merely not accepted it as it's illogical, irrational, universally applicable to every supernatural entity with sufficient power that can be posited at will, and you're confusing simple facts (some of which you merely mistakenly think of as facts) with evidence for god despite your own assertion that other evidence is null and void by virtue of said entity's motivation, yet your assessment of evidence is the correct one, because there is no distinction between formally objectifiable evidence and what one random guy will accept as evidence.
if I got something wrong, please correct me.

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See this sort of thing with actuaries in life and disability insurance. A new policy will be getting introduced and different agents will explain to the actuary what they see as problem areas. The actuary will not listen or accept such information or the format of the information etc. So we then go through the usual process of the policy range being introduced and then all the fuckups. If the actuary did not automatically discount information then we would not have to go through that fucking process every fucking time.
Also you regularly confuse what's desireable with what's true. Policies are about what people want and can do. Actuaries are results of policies discarding relevant information because they're not about truth. Which car is the true one?

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The forum indicated that you are like the actuary and as such a lot is missing from your evidence.
No, a lot is missing from our information, as is the case with all not-all-knowing people. You've been equivocating facts with "evidence for X", which is entirely unwarranted. You have yet to present anything resembling a cogent argument, or put forth any rational reason why we should think that "your" evidence is in instead "evidence for what you claim".
If I refuse to accept Doyle's rants about faeries as true on the exact same basis I am rejecting your notions while listening to them for hours is not "missing the evidence". It's not even "missing the information". It's just that if I demand evidence and his strongest hint presented is to go look how the moon very roughly covers the sun I have no reason to assume the information I'd miss if I just left would be of any relevance whatsoever.

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But to move on, in terms of this topic the person like me is not looking for in depth analysis of evolution or whatever. For me it is about if God or gods exist.
Yay. So ... evidence? As in "objectifiable evidence independent of the observer"? You know, real evidence.
Also, before we turn to god again, could you please clear up for us how you know what god is capable of when that entails making itself utterly unknowable at will?
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: Noman Peopled on January 19, 2011, 06:32:23 AM
And if you don't know what a factorial is then here's an example:
50! = 50x49x48x47x46x45x44x43x42....etc
and the value of 50! equals 304140932x10^64
So just try to imagine how big 7900000000! is
1) What are your numbers referring to? Which environment? How many molecules? In which time frame? Your numbers are meaningless without including those factors. The chances to get a specific number with dice is not 1/6th. It's 1/6th per throw of one dice. How many dice, how many throws?
I assume the numbers only counts the Earth, which is already a generous assumptions. If so, you have to multiply them by the number of all similar environments in the entirety of the universe, past, present, and future. In short, you'd have to include the frequency factor as well as the astronomical time factor and space factor.

2) What are the odds that an ice crystal in the atmosphere grows into the exact proverbially unique snowflake it ends up as? Almost zero. What're the odds that they grow into a snowflake? Very much near one. The bland, boring laws of physics account for complexity forming and in fact inevitably following from simpler rules and ingredients. See the similes of the grass yard and the deck of card already presented. It's extremely unlikely that nothing extremely unlikely will happen under extremely limited and simple rules.

3) Speaking of which, what's this "random"? Under certain conditions, amino acids form automatically. There is a always a chance factor, but that doesn't mean it's fully random. The exact shape of the snowflake is largely random but it will inevitably form under certain conditions.

4) Again, no logical link to god. "Unlikely stuff happens -> god."

//edit:
5) Missing information. We don't know all the way amino acids may form or if life may be possible in other forms.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: William on January 19, 2011, 08:44:33 AM
I see we're talking probability. If we're gonna do that, why not talk about the probability of life forming at random?

No we don't need to talk about the "probability of life forming at random" because it didn't do that  &) 

Only dishonest Creationists love to say that, and love to shoot it down too in the hopes it will impress their ignorant supporters.  No scientists hold it as a valid position.  It's a disgusting little strawman invented by Creationists, and so the process of attributing it to the theory of evolution and then shooting it down is nothing but a grubby lie for internal consumption.

It does not impress scientists - it makes scientists laugh/facepalm at Creationists.

Do you want me to help you stop spreading the lies?  Or do you prefer to lie for your deity?  What would your deity do?

Certainly there are underlying random processes at work in nature but life (self-organising chemicals systems) evolve through selection which is NON-RANDOM.  Get it?  Selection adds information - incrementally.  One little improvement at a time.  Chance provides the raw material - selection shapes it into functional information - simply ignoring the vast majority of changes that don't add value. 

So all your fancy probability calculations are plain wrong - either very ignorant or otherwise mischievous lies. 

Firstly, the probability of incremental improvements by chance is conditional probability - entirely different to the probability calculations used by Creationists. 

Secondly, we are talking about biopolymerisation - and specifically template directed autocatalytic processes.  Every type of polymer has unique probability of forming and growing spontaneously - hugely affected by concentration, temperature, and catalysts.  Creationist probability calculations conveniently ignore all of this.

Thirdly we are talking about beginning with primitive biopolymers competing with each other for raw materials in aqueous environments - enclosed within spontaneously forming membranes, where concentrations can increase enormously and reactions can be shielded from contaminants. 

All these concepts make Creationist probability calculations completely nonsensical.

You can't take a sophisticated end product after billions of years and say:"Look it's too complicated NOW to have formed by chance."  It didn't form by chance - it was shaped by selection from humble beginnings.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 19, 2011, 09:16:33 AM
And if you don't know what a factorial is then here's an example:
50! = 50x49x48x47x46x45x44x43x42....etc
and the value of 50! equals 304140932x10^64
So just try to imagine how big 7900000000! is

Thank you, I think it's pretty safe to say that the regulars here know what a factorial is.  Please don't be insulting.

Regarding your attempts to show how "improbable" it is for amino acids (and, subsequently, life) to arise randomly, I refer you to http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/abioprob/abioprob.html (http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/abioprob/abioprob.html) .  Sample passage:

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I will use as an example the "self-replicating" peptide from the Ghadiri group mentioned above [7]. I could use other examples, such as the hexanucleotide self-replicator [10], the SunY self-replicator [24] or the RNA polymerase described by the Eckland group [12], but for historical continuity with creationist claims a small peptide is ideal. This peptide is 32 amino acids long with a sequence of RMKQLEEKVYELLSKVACLEYEVARLKKVGE and is an enzyme, a peptide ligase that makes a copy of itself from two 16 amino acid long subunits. It is also of a size and composition that is ideally suited to be formed by abiotic peptide synthesis. The fact that it is a self replicator is an added irony.

The probability of generating this in successive random trials is (1/20)^32 or 1 chance in 4.29 x 10^40. This is much, much more probable than the 1 in 2.04 x 10^390 of the standard creationist "generating carboxypeptidase by chance" scenario, but still seems absurdly low.

However, there is another side to these probability estimates, and it hinges on the fact that most of us don't have a feeling for statistics. When someone tells us that some event has a one in a million chance of occuring, many of us expect that one million trials must be undergone before the said event turns up, but this is wrong.

Here is a experiment you can do yourself: take a coin, flip it four times, write down the results, and then do it again. How many times would you think you had to repeat this procedure (trial) before you get 4 heads in a row?

Now the probability of 4 heads in a row is is (1/2)4 or 1 chance in 16: do we have to do 16 trials to get 4 heads (HHHH)? No, in successive experiments I got 11, 10, 6, 16, 1, 5, and 3 trials before HHHH turned up. The figure 1 in 16 (or 1 in a million or 1 in 1040) gives the likelihood of an event in a given trial, but doesn't say where it will occur in a series. You can flip HHHH on your very first trial (I did). Even at 1 chance in 4.29 x 10^40, a self-replicator could have turned up surprisingly early. But there is more.

1 chance in 4.29 x 10^40 is still orgulously, gobsmackingly unlikely; it's hard to cope with this number. Even with the argument above (you could get it on your very first trial) most people would say "surely it would still take more time than the Earth existed to make this replicator by random methods". Not really; in the above examples we were examining sequential trials, as if there was only one protein/DNA/proto-replicator being assembled per trial. In fact there would be billions of simultaneous trials as the billions of building block molecules interacted in the oceans, or on the thousands of kilometers of shorelines that could provide catalytic surfaces or templates [2,15].

Let's go back to our example with the coins. Say it takes a minute to toss the coins 4 times; to generate HHHH would take on average 8 minutes. Now get 16 friends, each with a coin, to all flip the coin simultaneously 4 times; the average time to generate HHHH is now 1 minute. Now try to flip 6 heads in a row; this has a probability of (1/2)^6 or 1 in 64. This would take half an hour on average, but go out and recruit 64 people, and you can flip it in a minute. If you want to flip a sequence with a chance of 1 in a billion, just recruit the population of China to flip coins for you, you will have that sequence in no time flat.

So, if on our prebiotic earth we have a billion peptides growing simultaneously, that reduces the time taken to generate our replicator significantly.

Okay, you are looking at that number again, 1 chance in 4.29 x 10^40, that's a big number, and although a billion starting molecules is a lot of molecules, could we ever get enough molecules to randomly assemble our first replicator in under half a billion years?

Yes, one kilogram of the amino acid arginine has 2.85 x 10^24 molecules in it (that's well over a billion billion); a tonne of arginine has 2.85 x 10^27 molecules. If you took a semi-trailer load of each amino acid and dumped it into a medium size lake, you would have enough molecules to generate our particular replicator in a few tens of years, given that you can make 55 amino acid long proteins in 1 to 2 weeks [14,16].

So how does this shape up with the prebiotic Earth? On the early Earth it is likely that the ocean had a volume of 1 x 10^24 litres. Given an amino acid concentration of 1 x 10-6 M (a moderately dilute soup, see Chyba and Sagan 1992 [23]), then there are roughly 1 x 10^50 potential starting chains, so that a fair number of efficent peptide ligases (about 1 x 10^31) could be produced in a under a year, let alone a million years. The synthesis of primitive self-replicators could happen relatively rapidly, even given a probability of 1 chance in 4.29 x 10^40 (and remember, our replicator could be synthesized on the very first trial).

Assume that it takes a week to generate a sequence [14,16]. Then the Ghadiri ligase could be generated in one week, and any cytochrome C sequence could be generated in a bit over a million years (along with about half of all possible 101 peptide sequences, a large proportion of which will be functional proteins of some sort).

In other words, spontaneous production of the early building blocks of life is not at all unlikely.  In fact, it might even have been inevitable.  Once those were produced, things weren't happening "at random" anymore, so probabilities are no longer meaningful.
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: naemhni on January 19, 2011, 09:25:26 AM
Oh, and by the way...

http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-01-asteroids-life-ingredients.html (http://www.physorg.com/news/2011-01-asteroids-life-ingredients.html)

"A wider range of asteroids were capable of creating the kind of amino acids used by life on Earth, according to new NASA research."
Title: Re: I'm a Christian Open to Questions
Post by: JT812 on January 19, 2011, 09:38:30 AM
Where did you get your first probability - the one of a protein forming at random?  If that probability is off, your entire calculation is off.

Given that scientists have caused spontaneous assembly of amino acid chains into proto-protiens with regularity in the lab, do you think that perhaps your probability may be wrong?
Here are some sites listing the probability I gave:
http://www.seekfind.net/Evolution_And_Statistics.html (http://www.seekfind.net/Evolution_And_Statistics.html)
The Atheist ODDS (http://www.y